Sunday, February 27, 2011

I Want to Be Like This Guy

Growing up in Hawaii the beach and ocean were obviously a huge part of my life.  Sadly, I did not pick up surfing until my late teens (actually the latest teen).  I absolutely loved surfing (I still do even though I'm 3000 miles away from home).  One of my favorite surfers is Laird Hamilton.  He's fearless, innovative and his surfing is unbelievably instinctive.

He posted this on video the other day.  Watching this type of stuff makes me want to get back in shape and on a board so bad!  Check it out!

If I ever get back to Hawaii one of the first things that I'm going to do is buy a stand-up board and paddle.  I hear that it's a great workout and I admire the physicality and core strength it takes.  Here's a bit more stand-up by Laird.

From a fitness standpoint, Laird has been an inspiration to me for a while.  Take about 15 minutes to watch some of his surf videos and you'll quickly see how in shape Laird is and how well he's taken care of himself.  He put out an autobiography a few years ago called, "Force of Nature".  In it he talks about surfing, family, his childhood (which is actually a great story) and health.  I actually keep my copy of his book at my desk at work.  It's a great read.  What I love, is how much health and fitness is not just a part of his life, but a lifestyle instead.  He has a healthy balanced diet (which is not the easiest in Hawaii I might add), engages in strength training, yoga, obviously surfing, and general fitness to keep himself healthy.

Seeing these videos makes me want to get back into surfing shape.  I've got a trip home to Maui scheduled for Christmas... we'll see what I can do to get in shape by then.

If you aren't convinced about how rad Laird is... this will do it.  This is taken from a great surf documentary called "Riding Giants".  Pardon the mild language.

Happy surfing.

Cardio Push - Week Wrap Up

I'm feeling a bit under the weather today...which is no fun.  I'm hoping that I can kick this cough today so that it doesn't affect my week in the gym.

I'm noticing that the gym is becoming more and more of an obsession for me.  It's starting to feel good.  What I'm still working on and trying to get more control over is my diet.  In due time, I think that'll come however.  In terms of diet, I've learned a couple of things:

1. If you record what you eat, you're more likely to eat healthier.  I've found that my portion control is better and I'm more aware of when I'm missing out on certain food groups.  I don't think it's worth obsessing over, but it definitely has helped me.

2. Simple sugars kill me.  Enough said.

Here's what my workouts looked like this week:

Monday: Cardio
42 minutes on the elliptical - 4.25 miles

Tuesday: Crossfit Day
5 rounds of the following:
50ft lunges while holding a 45 lb bar above your head
21 burpees
The burpees killed me, but I ended up doing the workout in 22:36.

Wednesday: Crossfit Day
As many of rounds of the following in 20 minutes:
5 pull ups (I had to end up doing jumping pull ups...again)
10 push ups
15 squats
I completed 16 rounds

Thursday: Cardio
43 minutes on the elliptical - 4.3 miles

Friday: Cardio
35 minutes on the elliptical - 3.7 miles

Like I mentioned in an earlier post, I'm starting to go to the gym in the morning before work, so I'm hoping that I can do a couple days this week with two workouts.  Wish me luck!

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Morning Trips to the Gym

I woke up Monday morning (President's Day) and went to the gym.  It was sort of out of necessity.  I was going in to work for a few hours (by choice) and I had plans with my family after work, but I still wanted to get a workout in.  I got to the gym by about 6:45 jumped on an elliptical machine for about 45 minutes, jumped in the shower and was at work by about 8:00.  The rest of the day I was invigorated.

What tough about morning trips to the gym?
1. The gym is packed.
2. I cherish my sleep like it's gold.
3. My bed is so comfortable.

What's great about morning trips to the gym?
1. An early morning workout will kick start your metabolism.
2. Your family is typically still sleeping.
3. It's like jolt of energy for the rest of my day.

So...I've decided that I'm going to start making morning trips to the gym twice a week to do some cardio.  I'll probably still go to the gym during lunch to workout with my buddies from work, but this will give me some easy and needed "me time" in the gym (although it is difficult to stay motivated).

I calibrated Nike+ on my iPhone to record my workouts on the elliptical (my joints need low impact).  Hence the screenshots.
I'll let you know how it works out.  I anticipate that it will help with the weight loss over time.  Prior to my senior season for Volleyball in high school I wanted to drop a few pounds.  I started running three mornings a week before school and it got me in pretty dang good shape...I dropped the needed weight as well.

Saturday, February 19, 2011

It's Been a While...Week Wrap Up

So my gym membership went under for about a week (I'll spare you the details about expiring accounts, renewals and such), however I will say that I'm very glad to have my membership back.  I hated not having access to the gym...especially when it's only five minutes away on my lunch break.  It's feels good to back.

I got my membership reactivated on Thursday, so it's been a short week in terms of work outs.  Here's what the last three days looked like:

Thursday: CrossFit Day
The WOD called for the following:
7 rounds for time of:
15 kettle bells swings (55 lbs)
15 power cleans (95lbs)
15 box jumps

I wasn't feeling very good that day, so I ended up scaling the workout back to the following:
5 rounds for time of:
10 kettle bell swings (55lbs)
10 power cleans (95lbs)
10 box jumps (24 inches)

I kind of felt like a wuss for scaling it back, however, the workout still kicked my trash and made me sweat like mad.  It felt great.

Friday: Legs
5 sets of squats (10 reps) super-setted with 10 box jumps (24 inches).  I ended up doing 3 sets of 225, 1 set of 185, 1 set of 135.

After that I did sets of "side to side" jumps over a 8 inch tall, 18 inch wide box. 

It was a short workout, however I worked up a pretty good sweat.  It reminded me of the type of short quick workouts I used to do in high school for volleyball.

Saturday: Random + Cardio
4 sets of lat pull downs (wide grip) super-setted with reverse, close-grip pull downs ( 130lbs and 110lbs respectively)

3 sets of 1-armed, standing cable rows. 10 reps. (70 lbs).

3 sets of cable fly-presses, super-setted with push-ups. 10 reps of each.

35 minutes on the elliptical machine.

Tomorrow's a rest day: I never work out on's my day for church and family.  Looking forward to beginning another week on Monday!

Friday, February 4, 2011

Week Wrap Up

It's been a great week.  I'm feeling good...with the exception of some shoulder pain that is remnant of a volleyball injury.  Here's what my workout schedule looked like:

Monday: Crossfit Day
Eight rounds for time of...I did it in 22:59
115 pound Thruster, 5 reps
10 pull-ups
100 meter Sprint
1 minute rest

Tuesday: Crossfit Day
Squat Cleans.  7 sets of 3 reps (this is actually what aggravated my shoulder)

Wednesday: Crossfit Day
For time...I did it in 26:43
20 in Box jump, 50 reps
25 pull ups
55lb Kettlebell swing, 50 reps
40 lb dumbbell hang power clean, 50 reps
50 sit-ups
800 meter run
50 Back extensions

Thursday: Rest Day.  Thank goodness.

Friday: Legs
Front Squats/Bent Over Row supersets
Laying Leg Press/Standing Leg Press supersets
One leg bent over rows
Quad extension/hamstring curl supersets

My weigh-in midweek indicated that I've lost 8.5 lbs since the beginning of the year.  It feels good.

I'm looking forward to a busy weekend and a fun Superbowl Party with family on Sunday.  Enjoy your weekend everyone!

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Why I Love Crossfit

So I've been fortunate this past month or so to be working out with a group of guys from work.  They're big fans of Crossfit, so I've kind of been thrown into the middle of a crazy workout regimen.  At first, I was really intimidated by the concept and the workouts.  I'm still intimidated by some of it, but not as much anymore.

Courtesy of  This isn't me by the way.
If you aren't familiar with Crossfit, you should look into it.  It's a training program that is used by different law enforcement agencies, military personnel, athletes, and martial artists to name a few.  By design, the programs delivers fitness that is general, broad and all inclusive.  Workouts tend to emphasize multiple muscle groups in motion together.  The great thing about the workouts, is that they are scalable to whatever your fitness level.  My explanation does it no justice, so you should check out the Crossfit Website and the Crossfit Journal.

As I mentioned, I was really intimidated by it at first, however I have grown to love Crossfit.  Here are a couple reasons why:
1. Results.  Isn't this the ultimate reason you do a work out.  We do Crossfit workouts about three days a week.  In the last month I've lost 7 lbs.  I've also felt myself get stronger and increase stamina.
2. Adrenalin and Heart Rate.  Crossfit workouts don't take a lot of time (partly because in many of them you're competing for personal best times), however your heart rate skyrockets for some of's a great feeling.
3. Time.  Effective and efficient workouts.  That's great for me because I mostly go to the gym during my lunch break.
4. Satisfaction.  When you're feel great about the fact that you finished.

Needless to say.  I'm a fan.  Crossfit is really about "functional fitness" to me.  If you get an opportunity...look into it.  Like Milk, it'll do a body good.