Wednesday, April 25, 2012
How do you spell relief?
For me it was successful visit by my CEO....who just left today!
It was a great visit, but getting everything ready these past few weeks, especially as much as I've been on the road, has been pretty taxing. Add to that the fact that he was bringing his wife along, meant that SWMBO had a whole social agenda to put together for the 2 day visit as well.
Now I've known him for about 8 years....he actually ran my division way back then, and has obviously moved on to bigger and better things.
But there's nothing like a visit by the boss of all bosses to focus the mind as we got ready to give him a deep dive into all the different moving parts of the business.
SWMBO took his wife around town for a quick tour of the Emerald Coast while we were holed up with him in meetings all day. Then we hosted a reception for both of them last night.....and put them on their jet home early this morning
Overall it went great....I had him do a "town hall" with all our folks as well, which went over quite nicely.
So today I was especially glad to hit the gym at the end of the day for a nice bout of circuit training!
And some even better news is, I wrestled my schedule under control this afternoon as well. I cancelled a couple of trips these next few weeks, so lo and behold, I might be home for almost 3 weeks straight!
I told trainer guy that since we'll have so much continuity, to plan on putting some magick into our routines these next few weeks....change it up, pump it up, let's take it up a notch!
More to follow.....have a great night Spark friends!
Monday, April 23, 2012
So my new gadget-toy arrived this weekend....the Bodymedia Fit CORE armband!!
As a die-hard data hound, it really feeds my inner geek!
I got it Saturday, gave it a quick charge, then hit the gym for 45 minutes of HIIT on the elliptical. Wore it all night to see how it measured the "quality" of my sleep (not too bad....a little tossing & turning but a pretty solid 6 hours)
Sunday was a down day, so I got a good read for how many calories I burn on a day where I do absolutely nothing but putz around the house, drinking coffee, reading, and hanging out on Sparkpeople (about 2200 calories)
Today, I wore it all day at work, then at the gym where I did a 20 minute cardio warmup, then lifted for about 90 minutes....I'd like to see what it comes up with for total calories burned by the end of the day, especially compared to yesterday.
It's pretty unobtrusive....I really haven't noticed it at all, even while working out, which is real good, otherwise, it would have been back to Amazon in its box for a refund!
It tracks all sorts of Gucci data; steps, sleep duration, physical activity, etc. On Bodymedia's website, you can track food and it gives you the delta between calories burned & consumed. I have no desire to enter all my food twice, so I just take my total calories from SP and enter it into their total....QED!
My inner uber-geek is quite pleased at how I can slice & dice the data on their website. I can zero in on the flight of stairs I took in the morning to see how many extra calories I burned (10!), zoom into my gym session to measure how much of the activity was "vigorous" (15 minutes....not sure how they define that), see what's really going on when SWMBO accuses me (falsely) of snoring.....it's like having a Heads Up Display on all my vitals!
Now if I could just get a direct Wi-Fi feed into my brain.....
Have a great night Spark friends!
Wednesday, April 18, 2012
Well, here I am in Atlanta....again.....not stuck, just a long layover till my 11:00 PM connection back home....I've got a free 90 minutes, so I cranked open my little Verizon MiFi and decided to get caught up on Spark for a little bit.
It's been a busy few days....Monday was chock full of meetings, then I had to skedaddle to catch a flight from Kansas City to DC. Got into my hotel after midnight, hit the sack, then had my first meeting at 7:30 Tuesday AM. Luckily it was a conference, so all I had to do was sit back and listen, nodding wisely when the presenter made a good point.
The good news was, this conference didn't have any forced marches to the lunch buffet....we were on our own, so I was free to hit the gym as long as we were back in 90 minutes.
I can do that!
I now REALLY, REALLY like this Lolo Beatburner app for elliptical, and will likely check out the their app for indoor cycling as well. I figured out how to get it to scan my music collection, analayze it all for the BPM in each song, then it increases or decreases the beat, without losing any pitch, and uses that to cue you on how fast or slow you go.
It's a great workout! I basically got in about 40 minutes of awesome interval training and felt incredibly charged and energized afterwards!
Showered, dressed and made it back in time to sagely sit through the rest of the afternoons presentations.
My brother lives in DC, so I went over to his place (after a return visit to the gym to get in some ST!) for dinner & dessert Tuesday night. My 2 nieces (5 & 2) were energetic & adorable....and fascinated with my iPhone as the played angry birds, took pictures of each other, and watched movie trailers on Flixter!
I was going to leave at 9:00 PM when the kids went to bed, but my brother & SIL insisted I stick around for a while.....which stretched into staying till 1:00 AM!! I realized that their lives (they are both in their late 40s) now revolve around Disney princesses, iCarley episodes, and endless viewings of Ice Age and Mulan! They are starved for adult conversation, so I helped them get grounded back into semi-adult living!
So I was pretty groggy this morning after my 3 hours of sleep for the night....then had to get my game face back on for another 8 hours of presentations & discussions.....loading up with a Venti Americano from Starbucks helped immensely!
I definitely needed another lunchtime workout though, so I repeated yesterday's elliptical session and that helped make it through the afternoon.
Anyway, life is good....I know blogging helps me stay on track, so I figured my choices were to connect up & blog....or to veg in Atlanta unable to resist walking over to Aunt Annie's pretzels and assorted other temptations in the fast food hell that is Atlanta Hartsfield airport!
Have a great night Spark friends!
Sunday, April 15, 2012
Made it in to Kansas City earlier tonight....a surprisingly uneventful trip (except for the high speed abort on the runway in Atlanta....we taxied off, then got right back in line.....pilot said he had "a false positive" on an engine light)
Grabbed the rental car and drove to my hotel marveling at the rolling hills that make up this part of the country. For this Boston boy, transplanted to the flat Florida coastline, seeing undulating hills, covered with green, green grass and more than just a few cows & horses was a heartwarming sight.
But man 'o man the wind! Those big storms must have left something fierce in their wake here because it was a beautifully sunny day, but every time I stepped out of the car, I would get hammered by a deafening wind. I remember being fascinated as a kid, reading stories about the Mistral winds in Provence and how they would drive people mad after weeks of constant howling....how could wind do that to people?.....today I could see why!
Checked in to the hotel around 5:00, scoped out the area nearby and found the gym, changed, and went to get in some cardio, when....
Gym closes at 6:00 PM! What the HELL is up with that!!! It's 5:15, what kind of self-respecting gym would close at 6:00 PM on a Sunday?!?!
I just cursed under my breath and made a bee-line for the nearest elliptical (I didn't want to waste any time scoping out the rest of the joint!)
Plugged in that neat little Beatburn app I mentioned yesterday and cranked away for the next 45 minutes....and a good 45 minutes it was!
After reading and listening to the directions on the app a little better, I found out how to adjust it and it's a pretty cool piece of work! It keeps adjusting resistance settings and pace, giving very good audio cues and changing the tempo for the music to match your stride. There's supposed to be a way for it to read your playlists, grab songs that have the BPM required and/or adjust the BPM of your songs without messing with the pitch....more to follow if that works as advertised or not.
On the way back I spied with my little eye a very interesting looking Thai restaurant. Pointed the iPhone there and Yelp came up with a nicely augmented reality rating of 4.5 stars! Good enough for me, especially since some little banshee voice in my brain kept screeching "BBQ, BBQ, BBQ!"
Had a nice cup of Coconut Milk Soup and a serving of some quite nicely prepared Pad Thai Chicken....figured I couldn't go wrong ordering some staples of the cuisine and they did it just right. But whoa, here I was less than half way through the Pad Thai, when all of a sudden....I felt full.
It's an odd thing for me on the road to not clean my plate....but here I was, looking at a whole lot of rice noodles, strips of chicken breast, scallions, and bean sprouts telling myself, "I'm done"
Banshee voice in my brain: "But you're not done eating....there's more food there...that's wasteful!"
"Yeah, but I'm full....I just had a great workout....drank a lot of water....I'm full. Maybe I'll take it back to the room with me and have it for breakfast....that won't be wasteful will it?"
Banshee grabs head and screams, running around my table in a panic yelling NOOoooooooo.....
So that's what I did....Pad Thai is sitting in my fridge right now.....and hell, if I don't feel like eating it in the morning....I might just throw it away....in the end, I got a good meal, stayed within my calorie limits, got what I paid for.....and none of that is wasteful at all!
Have a great night Spark friends...tomorrow DC!
Saturday, April 14, 2012
So my boss calls me up from Vegas Thursday night and says, "Hey, can you go to a conference for me in DC next week?"
Me: "Well I'm going to be at meetings in Kansas City on Monday & Tuesday....when's the conference?"
Boss: "It's Tuesday and Wednesday....I really need you to go....we NEED to be there....it'll be noticed if we're not"
By which he meant I needed to be there.
Me: "OK, let me do some juggling around, see if I can't cram all our stuff into Monday. I can probably catch a late flight to DC Monday night"
Boss: "Great, let me know if there are any problems!"
Of course there won't be.....that's what I do.
And it really isn't that big a deal, but I've got to admit, the only part that really bugs me is that I'll miss my ST sessions on Monday & Wednesday night.....I've been on a really, really good roll.
I've been making great progress, and I feel like I've got myself on a real good weekly routine combining ST, cardio, HIIT, abs, push-ups, back strengthening.....everything's hitting on 8 cylinders. I workout 4-5 days in a row, take a day off.....hardly ever take 2 days in a row off anymore....3 days off is a red flag for me.....more than 2 days without working out is my path of decline
So it'll all workout. I can get in some pretty decent ST maintenance on my own. I freely admit, having trainer guy there pushes me way harder than I normally do on my own, hence the progress.
I tried out a new workout app today....I think I like it, but I'll need to try it out a few more times. It's called BeatBurn Elliptical and it was a pretty tough 45 minute workout.
It's pretty well designed and keeps the workout interesting, having you change the intensity and/or the strides/minute every 30-120 seconds.
All I know is I worked up a great sweat and the time flew by! Got in my push-ups today too, finishing another 6-day run.
Which is real good, because tonight we're taking #2 son out for Teppanyaki dinner at his favorite Hibachi grill! He gets to pick a dinner out when he brings home an all A report card. His choices vary between Hibachi grill, Chinese buffet, or Red Lobster....ahhh to be young and 18 and eat all you want without gaining an ounce!
But I was ready for him! Had a big green smoothie this morning (Yum!), grabbed an 8 piece sushi combo from the grocery store for lunch after working out, and here I am sitting at 800 calories for the day ready to face down the Iron Chef!
Have a great night Spark friends.....tomorrow, from Kansas City!
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