Almost forgot about this…

It’s been quite some time since I last wrote anything, even though I promised myself I’d do it a lot more.

Since the last post here, Seven and I got married and moved 560 miles from our apartment in Indiana to a new apartment in Gaithersburg, MD so she could start a new job. I suppose most people who would read this already know these things, but I guess it’s good to have just in case anyone else out there wants to know.

It’s been just over a month since I drove that 17-foot U-Haul through the hills of Appalachia and it’s been interesting since then. There are up sides and down sides to being here, I’m trying to focus on the former instead of the latter. Included in those up sides would be a whole lot of really cool things to see and do, including some fantastic county, state, and national parks. We’re allowed to have a grill, so we bought a 22.5″ Weber, which has seen plenty of use.

Overall, it’s been an excuse to try many new things and try to work toward building the life that we both want to live, which is what I’ve always been about. Sometimes, we get distracted from what we want.

It’s good to get a reminder and a chance to refresh those goals from time to time.

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New things in the works

Provided everything stays on the schedule I’ve tried to set, I’m about two weeks out from launching a project that I’m actually pretty excited about.

Once I overcame the excuses and fear of the unknown, it was easy to get the ball rolling. Now, that ball is picking up speed every time I check something off my to do list.

Did I say I’m excited?

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Training log: 10/23/13

Hey, everyone else keeps a training log on a blog, why not me too?

Sumo Deadlift:

  • 135 x5
  • 185 x5
  • 225 x5
  • 275 x5
  • 315 x3
  • 345 x3
  • 375 x3 x5

Hyperextensions (bodyweight):

  • 10 x4

Standing Overhead Press:

  • 45 x5
  • 95 x5

Negative pullups

  • 2 reps


I had planned to do a lot more of the presses but I had aggravated my shoulder on Monday so decided not to push it. Same reason for only doing two negatives, it started bothering me. Didn’t even try the barbell rows I’d planned. It’s stupid of me to not maintain my shoulder health so I’m keeping a resistance band at my desk at work to do pullaparts throughout the day.

On the up side, the deadlifts were a volume PR. They didn’t feel the smoothest so I’m going to repeat 375 next week but the PR stands.

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Weak points

There are a lot of things I’m terrible at and I need to improve upon to keep moving forward. I started down that track before but got frustrated at how embarrassingly bad it was, then created excuses to not keep doing the things I knew needed done.

I need to pull more. I’m too heavy and weak to do a single pullup.

I need to do more kettlebell swings and snatches to improve my conditioning.

I need to do band pullaparts daily for healthier shoulders.

I need to do mobility work daily for healthier hips.

I need to do more glute bridges and hip thrusts to work on glute activation.

I need to stop making excuses to avoid doing the things I need to do.

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Six months?

I’m seeing that it’s been 6 months since the last post. That’s far too long, because it means there hasn’t been much meaningful progress on things.

Well, that’s not entirely true.

I’ve had some problems and some successes. I’ve picked up some new habits and interests. Focus has shifted here and there. I realized that some of the things I wanted to do weren’t that important to me after all, so I abandoned those in favor of other things.

Back problems are still a big concern. After the last major blowup, the plan needed reworked. Unfortunately, I haven’t stuck to it as rigorously as I should. It’s purely my own fault for allowing excuses to get in the way. That has to stop.


On the up side, there have been some other successes to focus on as well. Seven has now lived with me for just shy of four months now. I’ve continued to rapidly pay down my debts, putting me in a pretty good position overall. The meadmaking has been going well, with several different successful batches and some more intriguing ones in various stages of progress now.  I’ve completed the prototype for my very first card game, though no playtesting has happened yet (over the winter, for sure). Things aren’t bad by any stretch, but they can always be better.

Once again, it’s time to regroup, declutter my brain, and push on.

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Complacence leading to discontent

Alright, so not everything is always great and wonderful. That’s not a surprise, anyone who is always doing well is either lying or on something. We all have ups and downs. Lately, I’ve felt stagnant. I think it’s the extended winter and the wild weather swings we’ve had that are screwing me up. 

It happens from time to time. When it does happen, I usually go back to the well. Strip out all the extra crap, take it all back to basics, and figure out how to get back on track. This time is a little different though. Time just keeps flying away and there isn’t that much to show for it. Continue reading

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Keto update 1

Yes, I know I haven’t been on this even a week yet but things are going pretty well thus far. I’ve dropped pretty much all excess water and the scale is still trending downward. Energy levels are good, strength isn’t suffering too badly, and I’m not as foggy as I have been when running PSMF. In all, it’s going well so far. We’ll see if that keeps up.

Something I’ve never done before one of these experiments is blood work. I didn’t do it before starting but it’s still early enough that I should be able to get a pretty solid baseline.  I’m getting:

  • CBC
  • CMP
  • TSH/FT4/FT3
  • Lipid Panel
  • Ferritin

I should have the results from LabCorp in a week(ish). I’m not expecting this first set to be great but I do expect to see improvement in subsequent tests. I’ll probably try to do a set every 6-8 weeks, at least for a while. Along with measurements, photos, and weight, the lab tests will give me a new dimension to the metrics I can track.

I’m excited as ever to see how this is going to all turn out.

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Recognizing opportunity

I’ve been missing my camera lately. Haven’t been able to take a lot of time to get out and shoot lately.

Last weekend, I went to the Arnold Sports Festival just as I do every year. Needless to say, there are plenty of opportunities to shoot interesting things there. Those photos will be up when I get the time to do all the editing.  This isn’t the kind of thing I want to talk about in this post though. This one is about learning to recognize the less obvious opportunites.

Continue reading

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Playing the keto game

I started a new experiment yesterday. I’m doing my first traditional cyclic ketogenic diet (CKD). Having done many stints of a PSMF over the years, problems with and benefits of ketosis aren’t new to me but have never done a regular CKD.

The basic idea of the CKD is to eat very low carb (what most people can relate to as Atkins induction) but then have a carbohydrate-based refeed every so often (usually 7-10 days, depending). There is a lot of hard science as well as a wide range of personal experiences that support the idea of keto as a healthy lifestyle, and that’s what it is: a lifestyle. The problems tend to happen when going off. Fortunately, there’s really no need to ever go off. Once the goal is reached, boost intake for maintenance. Pretty simple, really.

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Deconstructing the gun debate (Part 3)

This is the third part in this series. Read part 2 here.

Last time, we looked at the specific crime information by not only weapon but by time. This time, we’re going to explore the crime data a little closer. A lot of people are pushing gun control as a matter of public safety, saying that fewer guns will equal less crime and fewer deaths. As we saw before, the crime part isn’t really right. As you’ll see, the part about fewer deaths isn’t really right either.

Continue reading

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