Texas Try. . . Athelete

Tuesday, August 23, 2005

I've really got to get out of the day-job thing.

This week, I learned someone nominated me for the 'Good Times Team.' By the way, if I ever find out who nominated me -- they're dead.

The 'Good Times Team' is in charge of work activities: happy hours, fun activities at work, etc. Of course, we're not allowed happy hours anymore because there was an 'incident.' Some people got trashed at a happy hour, and the talk became very sexual. I guess it upset some people, and well . . . there went happy hour.

We had a meeting today. The ideas people have are horrible.

The worst was this: each department create a putt-putt hole, and then as the day goes on, you can try your hand at sinking the putt. The department with the lowest score wins a prize.

I'm in hell. What in the hell is this?

On a good note, I sent off another chapter for the Photoshop book, and did a good hill session of running today at lunch. Nothing beats a meeting with the 'Good Times Team' like a rough run in the middle of the day.

Monday, August 22, 2005

Lately, I've been mixing the Body for Life program with triathlon. It's working pretty well. I'm lifting three days a week (on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday). Tuesdays I do some hard, interval or hills running. Thursday I do a swim workout. And Saturday's, I do a long ride.

I should take Sunday's off, but I'm training for a 1/2 marathon in September up in Dayton, Ohio. So I kind of just count Thursdays (my swim day) as a rest day. I work more on technique those days anyway, so it works out.

I'm liking the results. I'm not sure this kind of program would work for long races -- but for me and my Olympic-distance events it's just fine.

The hardest part's been the diet. For the most part -- I'm good. Until dinner. Not that I totally pig out or anything. But let's just say I could do better.

This past weekend, Niki & I took a B.A.B.I.E.S. class. I'm not sure what it stands for, but it's designed for new-to-be parents in their last trimesters of pregnancy. It talks about what to expect during the delivery, how to care for newborns afterward, and a bunch of other useful information.

It was a pretty good class -- although the thing lasted like 6 hours. During the first hour, the instructor showed a very graphic video of babies being born. The video left Niki in tears.

The instructor turned to Niki after the video finished and said, "I know, I know. It's very touching. The birth of a new baby."

"I'm not crying because it's beautiful," Niki said. "I'm crying because I'm scared to death."

I totally agree with Niki. I can't watch surgeries anyway. ER is enough to freak me out. I told Niki that we'll get her loaded up on drugs, and I won't venture onto the other side of the sheet they set up. Neither of us are doctors, nor have any desire to enter the health care industry.

We don't need to see what's going on down there. We'll leave it to the professionals. Let one's body do the work, as they say. The body knows what to do.

Thursday, August 04, 2005

Yesterday, Niki was let go from her place of employment. In a way, it's great. She was planning on leaving in October anyway for maternity leave. And, it's been getting stressful and weird there (I won't name any names).

But at the same time, it makes us a little nervous. We're now a one income family, with a baby on the way. Exactly what we figured would be the case, but it's a reality now.

I'm excited. And envious. I wish I could write full-time from home. Or train full-time and have sponsor's paying my living expenses. Maybe one day. At least as far as the writing goes. I can't see myself as a professional athelete. There are 60-year olds that pass me in some of these running races and duathlon's I do.

Don't laugh, though. Some of these 60-year olds are absolutely fearsome runners!

Sunday, July 31, 2005

It's off to brunch with the 'family.' A huge buffet with more eating. And then they're all coming over to see the new house, which is in shambles. We haven't had any time to work on it the whole week.

After that, I think Niki's going back to visit while I stay here and work. I use work loosely; it's really an excuse to have some downtime to myself. I want to get a workout in; some weights and cardio maybe. I need to go grocery shopping. I want to do some writing. There are articles that are due, along with some book chapters for a Photoshop book I'm doing. And then, there's another book in the works now about digitual photography coming up. I've got to write a table of contents for that before next Monday.

I think you have to make the important things in your life become lifestyle things. Eating clean and exercising should feel like drinking water. Finding the right kind of work should feel like breathing.

You don't do these things 5 days a week from 8 to 5, and then quit in exhausting over the weekend. Neither do you spend 60 - 70+ hours doing them either.

It's nice to have every part of your day broken up equally into these pieces (at least for me): family, work (writing), health. Maybe even religion or spirituality as a fourth (I like yoga -- which I would say not only helps you physically, but mentally and spiritually).

Sorry if I sound dramatic. I think I've just had too much family in my days lately! In-laws!

Saturday, July 30, 2005

It's been a busy week. My sister-in-law was married today. Niki & I have spent a week doing 'family stuff' and I'm tired of it now. I'm ready to take a break from family.

Every night we have some obligation, and it's just too much. Too much mingling, and people getting upset because they're tired, and too much eating and drinking crap, and then having to get up early because there's another whirlwind event the next day.

At the wedding today, I had to say one of those dumb, congratulation speaches into a video camera. I thought I did OK, but then the family decided we should watch it tonight. So 40 some people crowded into a room.

It was embarrasing. I looked like a geek. The camera was about two feet from my face. I was wearing glasses because Niki said they looked hip, but I looked like a toolbox. It was terrible.

I'm sick of weddings and family events and what have you. I want to be a hermit for the next couple months or so.

Niki & I are planning a trip to Ohio in September. There's the Air Force Half Marathon race. I really need to get some new shoes. The old ones I have are hurting my feet. Not good.

I'm looking forward to running that race. Endurance races are kind of cool. The fittest person rarely ever wins. It comes down to something else. Something deep within.

Which is just like life. Learning to dig deep is what life's all about.

Wednesday, July 27, 2005

Some day's, you just feel blah. You're not even sure why. You just feel that way. Today is one of those days for me.

I haven't eaten great today, which could be part of it. That, and last night I met some friends at a local 'watering hole.' I meant to only have one beer and then be off, but ended up having six.

Which is probably why I feel 'blah' today.

So I guess I feel guilty. I failed in living healthy today. And yesterday. It happens. Everyday's a struggle with choices. I made some wrong one's today and yesterday.

I'll do better tomorrow. It's all I can do.

Sunday, July 24, 2005

I've been studying (a little) for the NSCA Certified Personal Trainer certification. There was a test in August I planned on taking, but I don't think I'll be ready. So maybe I'll just wait until the October test. We'll see . . .

There's a lot of information, and I haven't been in school in probably a dozen years or so. Thus, reading a text book brings back all these terrible memories of why high school and college weren't the favorite times in my life (except for the part where you had the most amount of freedom with the least amount of responsibility. That was kind of nice).

Niki & I have a pretty busy day today. Just going over it in my head makes me think that I've nearly become 'suburbanized.' Which actually, is very nice, and I like it. I don't miss living in apartments with the fraternity guys above me blaring all their electronic stereo equipment (that's paid for with Best Buy credit cards). I don't miss the 2 a.m. blaring of motorcycles and hot rods as they fly through our parking lot.

I'm beginning to sound like an old, crotchety man.

Today, Niki & I are going to church with some friends. Afterwards, we're going to eat at The International House of Pancakes, and then come by and show them the new house. Of course, it's in shambles a little. I did a lot of work on it yesterday, but it's going slow.

Afterward, we'll run over the to local running shoe store. I need a new pair of sneakers for a half marathon I'm planning on running in September (the Air Force Half Marathon in Dayton. I would run the full marathon, but there's no way in hell I'll be ready for that by then). We'll then probably pick up a wedding gift for Niki's sister Amanda (she's getting married next weekend).

And then we'll come back. I'll do some writing while Niki goes over to her parents to work on Amanda's wedding stuff.

So is a boring day? To some, sure. But to me . . . it sounds wonderful, and I feel very blessed.