Category Archives: Mindset

Slimmer Fit

Dedication. Commitment. Focus. Effort. These are all things I need to focus on, and not just to reach the finish line at a Tough Mudder event. I’m getting married next year, and the qualities listed above are four out of hundreds of things I need to work on in order to be a better partner for my wife-to-be.

Getting in shape and becoming healthy are also on my list, and not just because I want to look good in wedding pictures (I’ll admit, it’s a nice bonus). By taking steps toward a healthier me now, I could be adding years onto my life. My dad died at 51, his dad at 59. I’m 27, and I don’t feel like my life’s halfway over. I want to give as many years as I can to my future wife and, hopefully, my future kids; the best way to do that is to start now.

Eating Better, Feeling Better

Early morning. One cup of coffee and a banana for breakfast. Sounds small because it is. But it’s enough to stop my stomach from rumbling, which is all I need in the morning. I should probably eat more, but it’s difficult.

That last sentence is actually a theme running through each of my days. As funny as it sounds, I don’t think I’m eating enough. I think it’s a leftover sentiment from the days when I would eat too much garbage food. Each item had a boatload of calories and guilt attached. Now, with the better, real food that I’m eating, I struggle to eat as much as I need. I keep hearing Little Voice saying things like, “You’re eating again?!” Even when it’s a stick of celery or something.

What a twat that guy is.

Fact is, eating healthy (in my mind) means eating real food, and eating enough to sustain myself. If that means eating more frequently, then fine. It’s not like I’m hitting the drive-thru six times a day. (Six times? Even at Taco Bell, that would be expensive.)

I’ve been looking at the search terms people use when they land on this blog. As you might expect, most of them are looking for ‘tough mudder training’ or a workout that will help them get into TM shape. Understandable, but I doubt that this will ever turn into that. This is just me documenting my progress toward a goal, and the thoughts/feelings that go along with that progress. From time to time, I may post a workout on here, but it would be more of an interest of mine than a prescription for you.

Enough for now. I think I’ve convinced myself to have a snack.

A Changed Mind

When I started Couch to Tough Mudder, my goal was very simple: to complete a Tough Mudder challenge within the somewhat-near future. When I created that goal, I didn’t have a plan on how to achieve it. (To be honest, I still don’t, but that’s the fun part.) I also didn’t understand the ripple effect that would be created in my mind by what, at the time, seemed like a relatively small decision.

The more I’ve thought about my quest, the more complex it’s become. I’ve realized that there will be much more to getting in great physical condition than just exercising, eating well, and getting enough rest. I’ve started thinking more about the origins of the foods I eat, and about the types of foods that I want to put in my body. I’ve started reading ingredient labels too, which has been a real eye-opener.

Essentially, I’ve put myself on a whole foods, plant-based diet. I’m not cutting out beef, poultry, pork, seafood, or dairy, I’m just eating less of them. Except maybe dairy, because I drink milk as often as dumb people use the term ‘YOLO.’ I would like to reign in dairy eventually, but baby steps come first.

Yes, I’ve been reading Michael Pollan’s books. Yes, I’ve seen Food, Inc. And yes, I do think the science and environmental/ecological arguments make sense. Hippie? Maybe. Healthy? Absolutely.

I’ll expand on this in a day or two. Basic thoughts: the type of food you eat is just as important, if not more so, than the amount; I have to lose a lot of weight in order to compete; designing a training regimen is going to be harder than I thought, but it’s something that must be done.

Push Through

Today sucked. Today was also huge. A very stressful day at work (combined with a strong desire to drive the 140 miles it would take to see my lady) made for an “off” feeling all day.

By the end of it, I just wanted to go home, push the reset button, and start again tomorrow. I had my gym bag packed and in my truck, but I was thinking about driving past the gym and saying ‘fuck it.’ Thankfully, I was able to guilt myself into going and busting out two miles of walk/jog. I’m very glad I did. Being in an off mood is no excuse for missing a workout, especially when you have the clothes and the time to bust a little ass.

I’m proud of myself for pushing through a mental wall, and making the effort to sweat a bit. I’m better and stronger for it. Fuck waiting–good things come to those who work.

Flu Daze

Last week, I had a bit of a sore throat. Yesterday, I came down with the flu. I sit at a desk all day, and work was a chore. I kept waiting for 11pm to come so I could go home and kill someone get some rest.

Obviously, this will affect training. I don’t feel well enough to move around the house, much less go run a mile or more. On the positive side, my caloric intake for the last couple of days has been a net loss, and with all the putrid barfing unfortunate sickness, that trend will probably continue throughout today.

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The vitamins that will help get me through this crisis.

I am trying my best to stay hydrated, if for no other reason than make sure I have something on my stomach. Dry heaving is the suck. I may venture into the world of actually eating something shortly. At some point today, I would like to make a training program for myself so I’ll be busting ass every day. The April 2013 Tough Mudder is closer than it seems on the calendar, and I have a lot of work to do to get ready for it.

Feel good, Mudder Lovers.

Good Links: I Came to Get Down

The last week or two, I’ve struggled with my journey. Mudder Lovers, I’m not bullshitting you when I say that the road ahead is difficult. It’s hard to keep working when you don’t see the results you want as quick as you’d like.

My dad used to say, “Son, take care of the pennies, and the dollars will take care of themselves.” That statement is all about not reaching the goal, but about building the habit.¬†Focus on taking one day at a time, and you will eventually get to where you want to go.

Anyhoo, during my downtime, I’ve been reading a really fun blog written by a really fun guy. The blog is I Came to Get Down, and it’s documenting a journey undertaken by the writer, Tony Flags, to slim down. Quick posts, but they pack a lot of punch. Milestones, emotions–they’re in here. It’s like a public journal about a struggle that, for some, can be a private hell. I Came to Get Down is, to me, one man talking about his way out of said hell, but he’s doing it all cool-like while sippin’ a brew. Because he can. Because Tony Flags is cooler than the other side of the pillow on ice in Alaska with Ice Cube drinkin’ a Coors Light. Check it out, get motivated, and get to work!

Failure

Yesterday, I had my first gym failure.

I was under the bench at 125 pounds. I got the first three sets easy, and the fourth set came with a bit of struggle. The fifth set, I really thought I could get it. I took a longer break, got some water, then took a deep breath and positioned myself under the bar.

1, 2…3…..4…….fuck.

I know, training is about building endurance and sometimes you fail but just get back on the horse blah blah goddamn. I know that outside of the gym. But inside the gym, I hated failing. Hated. It really burned me up. Putting the weight back on the rack, with the assistance of my spotter after having NOT completed everything I set out to do, was upsetting.

But, I’ll get it soon. I refuse to be ten short of a plate for eternity.

I’m done bitching, Mudder Lovers. Keep training, and keep your head up.