Passport

February 29, 2008

Today, my main goal is to get out to Walmart, get passport photos taken, back to the post office and get my passport stuff all filled out and filed. I have a 3 hour window to get this done, from noon to 3pm. I also need to get my front left tire filled, as well as a few other minor errands.

EDIT: Er…I don’t have my birth certificate. Passport dealeo will have to wait it seems.

So…this weekend is super busy. Like, busy enough I might be working superlatenight Friday and Saturday just to get things done. I have to finish that points reclamation for Stats, and I have a ton of work to get rolling on for Project Sim. I got electrical take offs. All of the takeoffs should be done by Sunday evening so we can get the other “administrative” portions done Monday-Wednesday.

My mind is going “GAH!” for the most part, but there’s still that portion in me that’s saying “Hooray, it’ll be fine because Jill will be here Tuesday afternoon.”

Yup. That definitely makes me happy. 4 days and she will be here. Thank goodness.

And getting the passport is just one of a bunch of other things I need to do for the post-wedding life get-readiness. So it’s totally worth it.

Brain no worky. Shutting up now.

Results are In…

February 27, 2008

I got a 99% on my “Career Documents” cycle for Technical and Scientific Communications. 198/200. Awesome. Now if only I could get Stats grades like that…

Also, check this out. I have lost 8 lbs in three weeks. This is what I looked like before I started exercising and eating right:

This was on February 10th, and I weighed 172 lbs.

This is this morning:

It is February 27th and I now weigh 164 lbs.

What I’m Doing:
It’s not that drastic of a lifestyle change really. First, I researched every little bit of weightloss/bodybuilding technique and information. I came up with a few key things:

  1. Water is crucial. Without sufficient water, your body retains what little you take in in fat. Also, by drinking plenty of water, your body will kickstart your metabolism again, and this will allow you to lose fat faster. I upped my intake from 1-2 8oz glasses a day to (now) about 90oz a day.
  2. Caloric intake is also crucial. Duh. You have to work off 3500 calories for every pound of fat. Do the math and you find that for each pound you want to lose per week you will need to work off 500 calories a day more than you consume.
  3. Exercise is critical. Another big duh. But seriously it is. You can’t just diet and expect results to last. You also won’t see results if you just jog/run la di da for an hour each day (ok, so you will, but they won’t be anything special). You have to push yourself. Make yourself drop to your knees, and then push yourself to go a bit farther. And cardio alone will not suffice. Sure, you’ll lose fat, but you want to look good, right? Alright, then lift. Yup. Lift. You don’t have to bulk up, but…
  4. Muscle is crucial as well. The more muscle you have on you, the more calories you burn at rest. While it might not seem like much (and I don’t truly believe it is that much), it will help. Think of it like a pH buffer. Your water in your tank is fluctuating up and down in pH so you add a buffer to lock that range in to a smaller range. Muscle is kinda the same thing in my book. You workout, you gain muscle intentionally, and that muscle helps you buffer your weight.
  5. Junk food is critical. What?! Yeah, I think it is. If you are on a low calorie diet, your body will kinda get used to it, and it will start to adjust to just burning off 1700 calories a day (or whatever you are taking in). By throwing in one day a week where you eat crappy, your body tells itself “Crap guys! We still have to work hard and burn off 2000 calories a day!” Not only that, but you probably won’t feel too great after the day of unhealthy food, and it will motivate you to keep eating healthy.

So specifics? Alright.

Diet:
Most days I eat a few high-protein meat melts.  So I’ll have basically a tuna sandwich with a slice of deli cheese on top of it, and put that in the Foreman grill to toast it. Each of these runs about 300 calories. I also eat a variety of fruit and veggies. Right now that consists of broccoli, fresh spinach (not out of a can), oranges, grapefruit, and celery. Some of that goes well with peanut butter, some doesn’t.

Additionally, I take a multivitamin each morning, and a protein powder drink after each workout. If you want to get the amount of protein you need (1g per pound of body mass [and it’s not lean body mass, as I thought, just body mass in general]), you almost have to supplement your protein intake. At 164lbs I need 164g of protein. Tuna has 27g per serving. I eat tuna or chicken three times a day, but it still isn’t enough. The extra 50g from the protein powder helps me get what I need.

And of course, I have a ton of water to go with all that.

Exercise:
I do a mix of things here. Basically, the majority of my “good” workout is Tae Kwon Do. I throw on my workout playlists (a mixture of hard rock, fast rock, metal, heavy trance, anything high energy/BPM) and start punching. The air. There is no resistance here, it is all my body against itself. I throw the hardest, fastest punches I can for as long as I can. I put up fast, hard blocks. I kick with as much power as I can muster. All in to the air. There are obvious drawbacks to this exercise setup if you look at it from a martial art view, but I get by. I am forced by the small corridor in my room that I workout in to be accurate, or ding my legs and arms up against the wooden loft frame.

I also use resistance tubing/bands to do weight lifting. This is basically shoulder presses, flys, curls and a few other exercises. I have dumbbells as well that I use for weightlifting.

Then there are the exercises that require no equipment. I do pushups. I do knuckle pushups on the hardwood. My knuckles hate me for it, but it’s a good thing. I do situps, crunches, leg lifts, and all those good old ab exercises. I do  hard downups, which is basically a squat, a pushup, and then a calf raise/jump.  And I also do pullups and chinups on my loft frame. I’m up to about 5 or 6 right now. 

So I feel pretty good about all that. Still have a long ways to go, but I’m getting there.

I think the title sums up how I feel right now? Yup.

Also, it might win my “Longest Title Evar” award

Title is a lyric from MG! The Visionary’s “Rainwalkin'”

Too much stuff just exploded in my face all at the same time, and has my head swimming in circles. I am having horrible lucid dreams, and I can’t get a good night’s rest with them. I wonder if there’s a remedy for that?

Lots of drama and conflict right now. All at a time when I just need to get work done for the next two weeks. There are a total of six conflicts that have risen up since last Friday. Went through two of them (one of them being the biggest) today.

And I have a ton of school stuff too. I didn’t fare well on my Stats exam (60%) despite me knowing how to do everything (picky grading). A lot of it was technicality though, not many actual wrong answers. So now I have to essentially take a second exam to make up half the points I missed (for you non-math folks, that means I can get up to an 80%…) which looks like it will take a number of hours this weekend.

Typical busy as heck week this week. Next week looks so crazy I don’t want to think about it. Jill will be up here while I get the last bit of the first part of the Project Sim project wrapped up (“I” being my team and I). Lots of projects, little bits of time to fit them all in.

Main problem: Stats. I don’t have a fancy graphing calculator, and it seems like the class is a “Here’s how you punch in numbers in a TI-89 to get the answer” lecture half the time. There is some good instruction, but I just can’t get it all without a TI-89 (and there is no freakin way I’m shellin out 100 bucks for one).

________________________________________________________________________________________

Good portion of the post…

I am getting in shape and it feels great. In 3 weeks I have lost 7 pounds. I feel more muscular, and I kinda look it too. Most importantly, I just don’t feel out of shape. I feel like I’m getting closer to what I should be. I’m on Traineo and that is keeping me logged and motivated.

Basically, I’m just doing 30-45 minutes of hard Tae Kwon Do cardio, which really works the muscles strenuously (it’s not so much an endurance exercise like jogging/running) as well as weight training with dumbells and resistance tubing. I’m also going to try to get to the racquetball courts at least once a week for good agility-based cardio.

Jill and I are 100% working on this together, and it is so much easier with a good motivator to push you and to make you feel good about what you are doing. I have progress pictures on Flickr, but there’s not much to see in the stomach-focused photos. Right now it is mainly in the arms, calves and shoulder that there is any visible change. I’m fine with that, because I feel the muscle through the flab now, which is awesome. It’s like licking to the center of a Tootsie-pop! Except the hardness layers are reversed, and you don’t lick fat off. Hmm. That may have just been a bad analogy.

Anyway…losing weight=good. Still having a flabby layer=bad, but motivation to keep going.

Race

February 20, 2008

But only one of us is ready on Day One to be commander in chief, ready to manage our economy and ready to defeat the Republicans.

– Hillary Clinton

And that is why she deserves to fail. She wants to defeat half the country while promoting her half. That divisiveness just doesn’t get things accomplished. Obama has right wing support, Clinton has very little.

Two AM

February 20, 2008

Man, I need sleep. But I need to finish out the finish work takeoffs for my project sim project that is due in approximately 13 hours. I have been staring at the paint specs for a while and need to snap out of it (hence blogging now instead of working).

I meant to be done at 1am. Unfortunately, Jill and I had an argument/long discussion that took up a good three hours or so of the evening. That pushes me back to 4am, which leaves me with about three hours of sleep. And the argument was actually kind of good. It sounds weird, but I enjoy knowing that we can argue without yelling at each other or leaving mad, so I really kind of like to argue. Odd eh? Perhaps it just reinforces the fact that we love each other enough to get over it.

Tomorrow is a supremely long day, which means I either have to nap after project sim class or do something or other to keep energy up. Basically, I have either class or working on the project sim project from 8am-4pm, Bible study from 6-7pm, and then my very last broomball game ever at 9pm.

I will be playing sans shirt. And since this is the last game I will ever play on campus, sans pants.  Screw the weather. It is expected to be in the single digits before windchill, but that doesn’t faze me.

Along the fitness lines, my workout routine, as random and sparse as it is, seems to be working. Not for dropping weight (though I am down two pounds from last week to 170lbs) and losing my gut, but getting muscles up and working where they should. I can actually feel muscles in my arm again. And I think I look better, personally. If I can lose the belly, I will be happy, but it is going to require a significant amount of cardio and eating right: both things I tend not to get around to when I am busy with school.

Just got new toys. I got resistance tubing, which after working with for a while I have concluded is pretty neat. They don’t provide quite enough resistance on their own, so I doubled them up, and it seems to work a bit better. Shoulder presses are pretty effective with the tubing, as are triceps curls. Bicep  curls can be done, but it takes more reps to feel the burn. The cool thing is that the burn is one of those deep burns that I can’t get with just dumbell bicep curls. Don’t know why, but it just is.

Back to working. Think I am going to go to 1pm Stats.

I often wonder how Catholics get by. They rely on the catechism so heavily that it seems that they have forgotten the Bible. The Catholic television station (EWTN) just reinforces this idea, as there is hardly ever talk of things Biblical, only that stemming from the catechism.

When I am done with all my work and exams tomorrow I can expand this Biblically, but for now, this will serve as a placeholder.

I am not trying to argue against Catholicism (discussion is something I long for, as iron sharpens iron), but  I do have a serious problem with the general state of the Catholic church in America being so tradition-bound that they become blind to the glory and love of God; even to the point of non-salvation! [Colossians 2:8 See to it that no one takes you captive through philosophy and empty deception, according to the tradition of men, according to the elementary principles of the world, rather than according to Christ.] This is not to say that Protestantism has no problems. Routine church-going does not a Christian make.

OK, this was supposed to be just a placeholder, and I have work to do, so I must stop short for now.

Ping Pong Sucks

February 15, 2008

Not the game, ping pong. The fact that sickness keeps ping ponging between class members. I have had flu-like illnesses at least four times this year. Luckily, nothing has really wiped me out for more than a day. I have a feeling that this one might.

Vitamin supplements, upping my water intake to 96oz/day, and staying warm. I feel kinda bad (slight understatement) right now.

Never had a flu where I had to boot. What is this evil?