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My Big, Fat Greek Lunch....and more Tabatas!

Saturday, September 03, 2011

So who knew that there was a large enough of a Greek Orthodox population here in the Ft Walton Beach area to hold an annual Greek Festival!

Now I'm not Greek, but I certainly enjoy a well-baked phyllo dough stuffed with spinach and feta cheese (spanokopita);

nicely layered moussaka;

orzo salad;

baklava, appropriately crisped;

and my all time favorite, the "bird's nest" kadaif;

You see, Labor Day weekend is our anniversary weekend, so this was as much a date for SWMBO and I as it was a culinary adventure. After hanging out on the back deck all morning watching the whitecaps generated by Tropical Storm Lee, we decided to hell with it, we're going out!

It was a pretty decent time, and we also got some shopping done (SWMBO had a long list of items from Bed, Bath, & Beyond, as well as me making good on the promise I made to buy her some new running shoes....cha-ching!)

So Spark friends, what else could I possibly do this afternoon except to get my a$$ over to the gym to burn off the generous helpings of olive oil and feta I consumed today!

I hit the stationary bike, got warmed up, then went into the Tabata intervals I've been talking about these past few days. I am most definitely digging them! Those short bursts of very hi-intensity, going all out, are tough as hell, but they get my heart rate way up there, I get a great sweat going, and I find that my mind is totally focused on exercise and absolutely nothing work, no home, no "I should take care of...." thoughts, just right here in the moment.

These are very short bursts over a period of just 4-5 minutes with recovery time built in. What I have found is that I can do these 5 minute Tabatas on different equipment. I started off on the stationary bike, then did some on the elliptical, then picked up a pair of dumbbells and did shoulders. So at the end of a 60 minute cardio session, I had worked out a great variety of body parts, some of them very intensely and 2 hours later, I still feel a very invigorating "burn".

That's good because my Big Fat Greek Lunch cost me 1000 calories, so burn, baby, burn!

Good night Spark friends!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:


    A 1000 calorie culinary adventure?! Awesome willpower! Although tabatas sound like they should have been part of the menu.

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HAKAPES 9/4/2011 2:35AM

    You only did 1000 kcal for this tempting Greek eating feast? That is awesome! I'm sure you controlled a lot of poriton control to do that!

Happy you signed up for the 5% challenge!

I also love those burning sessions!

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HEALTHIERKEN 9/3/2011 11:04PM

    You're the Man, GETSTRONGRRR!!!!!

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TIFFGETSFIT 9/3/2011 9:04PM

    Sounds like a great (and YUMMY) day!

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REBECCATKD 9/3/2011 8:05PM

    Oh, that 1000 calories sounds so worth it! Hey, you evened it out and went to the gym -- keep burning!

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RRP546 9/3/2011 6:59PM

  good nite to you

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Tabata tonight....then weights!

Friday, September 02, 2011

Well I took today off to make it a 4-day weekend....then I also decided that I'd take Tues-Fri off next week as well, so I'm about to enter 10 straight days off from work.....unheard of I tell you. It's OK though, I rarely get the full time off and will likely go in a few hours a few times next week.

But I digress....Today, I was a workout animal! And the plan is to continue that trend through next week.

First off I helped SWMBO with some household chores this AM....mostly being her pack mule to move boxes and "craft containers" from her studio room to our garage storage shed. I don't have the heart to claim it as cardio, and any ST benefits I got from it were from exercising patience as I arranged, then re-arranged the "craft containers" in the storage shed by season. Oh yeah, each 25 gallon tub is marked "Fall decorations", "Christmas ornaments", "Easter", "4th of July".....I could open a Micheal's franchise in our backyard. Apparently the goal is (for me) to rotate the most recent required containers to the front each season....I'm very happy to be so needed
emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

But I finally broke free and made it to the gym. I actually went a little early to warm-up before lifting and decided to try the Tabata Intervals I blogged about a few days ago (
). WOW!!! I had downloaded a playlist that times various intervals and used the beginner set of 10 seconds all out/20 seconds rest (actual goal is 20 second full out/10 seconds rest)

Well I got to admit, they were pretty amazing! I tried them a few times on the stationary bike, then on the elliptical, then again on the bike (trainer guy was late). I feel pretty motivated to start doing them as part of my regular cardio workout. I was warmed up and sweating in no time. Overall, it felt great to change up the pace frequently; it helped to stay focused in a way that just droning on and on for 30-40 minutes doesn't do. Here's a link to an article that gives a pretty good explanation of them:

Lifting went great everything else, consistency is the key for me. I've been able to get in 3 good sessions a week these past 3 weeks and have felt massive improvements. I'll keep it going next week, then see what I can do on the road through the rest of September.

That's all for tonight Spark friends, have a good night!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

NEEBREW 9/4/2011 10:04AM

    I followed your links and read about the Tabata... really intriguing, especially the paragraph that stated a 20 minute workout proved more beneficial than a 5 hour weekly workout total.

I'm going to try it today at the gym... I can't wait!

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REBECCATKD 9/2/2011 9:24PM

    I missed your earlier blog and will have to check it out. What the heck is tabata?

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MOBYCARP 9/2/2011 8:38PM

    emoticon Congrats on being consistent, and making progress with that consistency!

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Peanut Butter stays at home!

Thursday, September 01, 2011

Well I'm kind of glad this week is winding down. Lots to do, lots of demands on my time....and September is going to be a roller coaster. I'm flying to Virginia on Sept 11 (should be a hoot!), and then I'm on the road the rest of the month and into October; Salt Lake City, Orlando, Las Vegas, Charlottesville, parts unknown.

So I've got another week to get my act together and man up for a month of eating well on the road and working out, else I'll lose any gains I've recently made. I've been really consistent about working out lately, even if I've missed a day or 2, so I'm loathe to slack off there.

I'm going to take a few days off from work next week to finish up some stuff around the house, so that'll be a good chance to work out regularly and get in decent shape before hitting the road. I usually do pretty good getting cardio in while traveling...ST is a little tougher, so I might pick back up with the 100 pushup/200 situp program.

Good news; when I'm on the road, peanut butter stays at home!

Good night Spark friends!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:


    My goodness, so many places to go - Kinda makes the head spin just thinking about it. And, OMG, packing, like that would be a nightmare for me! Ahh, but you're a guy - Not such a tough job. :-)
Peanut butter - Hmmm, that's what I had last night after my ST workout at the gym. 1/4 cup almonds, 1 tablespoon peanut butter placed side-by-side on a small plate. Almonds dipped into peanut butter, one precious little almond at a time, until that feeling of ecstasy was so great, I felt I could not possibly stand it any longer. Oh, and the almonds and peanut butter were all gone anyway. Perfect timing.

Have a safe trip!


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AMEDEAU 9/2/2011 11:45AM

    Wow, that is quite a bit of travel. It's great that you are thinking about some of the pitfalls already. I'm wishing you the best to stay on track.

I know that previously, I have had issues of falling off the work-out wagon when I have traveled.

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Don't piss off your Personal Trainer!

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Deter me once, shame on you (work)....Deter me twice, shame on me (I will not be deterred)

So, today had all the potential makings of another 14 hour day at the office. I got in around 6:00 AM to get ready for tons of meetings, employee feedback sessions, yadda-yadda-yadda. It was pretty non-stop from early AM till late afternoon...same as yesterday. But yesterday, I stuck around till 8:00 PM, blew off the gym, and regretted it all night

Today I came real close to blowing off the gym again

It was 5:30, I was already late for my session with trainer guy, and I was this close to calling him up and cancelling.

Instead I called him up and said, "I'm delayed, I'll be there by 6:00 PM"

Wahoo! Probably the best decision I made all day!

We worked out back and legs pretty hard for an hour. It was just what I needed, because it has been a frustrating 2 days.

Here's the beauty of it: Trainer guy looks at me when I walk in and says, "You don't look happy"

"That's probably because I'm not. Let's go Monkey Boy"

That was probably the dumbest thing I said all day.

Here's some free advice to everyone....don't get surly with your personal trainer, they'll just make your life so painful, that any other frustrations or pains you have will quickly become inconsequential.

He opens up his notebook, erases a few things, scribbles down some new things, and next thing I know, he's telling me I need to "rep out" each set.

If your not fluent in gym-speak, "repping out" means that I basically keep doing whatever exercise he has me on (did I mention we did back and legs today) and keep doing them to muscle exhaustion. No counting to 8 or 10 and we're done. Oh no, just the constant "let's go go 3 more, 2 more, 1 more, 1 more, keep going, 1 more, come on you got 1 more in you"

"How many freaking 'one mores' can you keep adding you sadistic bastard? Are you enjoying this" (I just thought it, I didn't have the energy to speak)

Next thing you know, Old Jed's a millionaire.....I can't even remember what I was frustrated about at work.....I just channeled all that hate into trainer guy, who I'm cursing for every dime I'm paying to help get me in shape. Pretty much a Charlton Heston moment ("Hate keeps a man alive"--Ben Hur)

But by the end, I felt better. Trainer guy kept my motivation up, pushed me past what I felt I could do on my own (Hey, I'm here to tell the story), and, after I fired him twice, we scheduled our next session for Friday afternoon

So, life is good, working out helps relieve even the most frustrating of days, and the difference in my thinking today is that I WILL go to great lengths to workout and I WILL NOT be deterred!

Good night Spark friends

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

LAWLAW3 9/5/2011 6:15PM

  oh pay them in five pound note esp if its like 300 youre paying him and that will piss him off before you start. and one bag of pounds to take the piss it funny to do it....

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LAWLAW3 9/5/2011 6:08PM

  I always love winding uyp my trainer and he winds me up back, then we argue I train with him five days a week,and simply love winding him up any ideas would be great thanks but will call him monkey boy and gonna use that sadistic bastard quote thats funny

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DZSWEETIE2005 9/2/2011 9:13AM

    Hahaha I fire my personal trainer all the time! And he quits on me after I give him crap all the time! But it never sticks!! :)

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    emoticon. "Monkey Boy"? To your PT? Apparently you are a masochist or have a hitherto undisclosed death wish. You are lucky to still be here with us LOL!

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HEALTHIERKEN 9/1/2011 11:21AM

    Your blog titles are always so intriguing, and your posts well worth reading! "Monkey Boy" ??????!!!!!!!! You're lucky you're still alive : ) And more power to you for sticking with that trainer, and double more power to him for sticking with you : ) : ) : )

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KA_JUN 9/1/2011 8:51AM

    Great blog, suffering builds character, good for you for "encouraging" your trainer to drop the hammer. emoticon

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TIFFGETSFIT 9/1/2011 8:16AM

    HAHAHAHAHAHA!!!!!!!!!!!! This post was a great way to start my day :-) Good job Bicycle Man (is that annoying yet? Okay, good. Just checking ;-) Show Monkey Boy who's boss!!!!!

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    How many freaking 'one mores' can you keep adding you sadistic bastard?"

I am dying here - Laughing my arse off! Not even sure if I will be able to sleep tonight - this blog is too funny.

On Tuesday night at the gym I made some sarcastic comment to my trainer after she asked at the END of a grueling session if I was OK. I said, "Oh, yeah, in fact I could do 100 abs right now"
BAM! She had me down on the floor so fast doing those damn abs, I thought I would surely die from it. It was the most BURNING ab workout ever and, let me tell ya, I'm still in pain from it.
Still, I agree, there's nothing like a good workout to change a bad day's direction.

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JUNEBUG1944 8/31/2011 10:57PM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon MONKEY BOY??? MONKEY BOY???? You are a glutton for punishment, aren't you? emoticon emoticon emoticon

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PAMSPARKS 8/31/2011 9:26PM

    Awesome post, good advice, great pics to go with it! Thanks for sharing!

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I'm a Birthday Hero

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Well I'd rather be lucky than good.

My damn good luck made me SWMBO's hero see it's her birthday. Yeah, yeah #2 son and I took her out Saturday for an early birthday celebration, but today's her actual birthday and it just worked out that I had a major local function to attend in town tonight, some wacky 5-course dinner with fish, fowl, and Gulf seafood on the menu, and I got to take her along all dressed and foo-fooed up.....and it was FREE!

Beats the hell out of the vacuum cleaner I was thinking of buying her.

After a fairly hectic day at work, I told my front office guys that I had to be walking out the door at 4:15 I made it to the gym and did my fastest ever chest & shoulder routine (it's a lot more tiring when you cut the chit-chat and break times out). Came home, showered up and jumped into the monkey suit while she dolled up her hair, then I scarfed down a banana to squelch the hunger pangs before arriving.

Lots of mingling and a glass of ginger ale for me and SWMBO, then the dinner chimes sounded. Luckily, I scoped out what was on the menu ahead of time, so even though I was somewhat hungry, I didn't overdo it on any of the danger items (oysters rockefeller and the crab & lobster bisque)....SWMBO, bless her heart, can take a nibble or 2 of an appetizer or a sip or 3 of soup, then she's done...not a second thought....I tried to take my lead from her.

So it was very nice event, good company, and it turns out we had a lot in common with the folks at our table. She was happy, everyone squeezed her and gave her birthday hugs, and I got credit for a birthday night out.

Lucky over good any day!

Tomorrow....I experiment with.....Tabata Intervals!

Good night Spark friends!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

LENKA763 8/31/2011 8:26AM

    Happy Birthday !
My son and your SWMBO(I have no idea what it stands for)are born on the same day.

well, good for that you are he hero.I tried so hard and it did not turn out the way I intended.

maybe next year,right?

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JULIAMOONCHILD 8/30/2011 11:00PM

    Sounded like a great night out. Always the case when it involves food and the word FREE!
And big bonus - You got to work out at the gym before going.
Love it! emoticon

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