Wednesday, November 30, 2005
I keep forgetting to take my protein drink at night.
* * *
Things seem to be going well at home, except for my wife having a bad cold.
Music wise things are going good. I'm getting a little writing time in and working on some ideas. On one of the things I wrote, I played it out on the computer and my daughter was "you wrote that yourself?!" Which I took as a compliment. The first piano and guitar piece my son said, "who helped you write that!?" Which was one of those underhanded compliments.
I'll keep working on it.
Tuesday, November 29, 2005
11/29/05 Catching Up
Not really sore from yesterday's workout. That's OK. Not weighing in at the moment.
* * *
Having time off always reminds me that although what I do at work is important, it isn't always as fulfilling to me personally as playing and writing music.
Also, I'm gonna have to get smart and disciplined around the money stuff. Also getting more gigs will help.
I'm just basking in the enjoyment I get out of the music for now. I'm kinda psyched that the kids are willing to do some basic jazz stuff. I think reading music, writing out solos, and performing stuff in this way will give a big increase to the other stuff that they want to do. They want to start performing originals so that will hopefully come out of the jazz and blues work - even though that may not be the styles they end up sticking with.
Monday, November 28, 2005
11/28/05 Back to Bloggin
Started the higher volume workouts. We'll see how it goes. I'll keep going on this program until about Valentine's Day to see if it really works.
Did go running on Thursday. Didn't the rest of the weekend.
Couldn't sleep, but it was because there are so many things I'm excited about. Wish work was one of them, but oh well.
Today was high volume deadlifts, Wedensday I did a bench workout and Friday the squat workout. With this new program, I'll keep my days the same as far as the powerlifts, but they will be different in the volume and exercises that go with each day.
Tuesday, November 22, 2005
11/22 Que Chinga!
OK. My weight is down to 167.2, I'm stronger than ever, people tell me I look more muscular, but apparently I'm not. My body fat went up to 23.9% from 23.6% on 9/6.
Time to get over that and move on. The guy at the UNM Exercise Physiology lab made some recommendations and I'm going to give them a shot.
Instead of 1-3 home cardio sessions, he wants me to jog or run for 30 minutes twice a week. We discussed it and it looks like Saturday and Sunday. I can still do one cardio at home.
He would rather have me miss a weight workout than one of the cardio workouts. Since I doubt I'll miss many weight workouts it will be good to keep up on the cardio.
He also suggested that I use high volume for mass and go down in weight for a couple of months. He liked that I alternate, but said for this next round maybe building mass back up would be good. So more sets with higher number of reps.
He also thinks that a protein drink before going to bed will help with the muscle mass loss.
I'll try all of these things and report in. Next bodyfat check will be in January!
Monday, November 21, 2005
11/21/05 Cyco Workout 1
I figured since I don't have anywhere particular to go, I could workout like crazy. So I did. I hobbled over to the computer after finishing my workout and started on a can of tuna. Here's my workout for today. All in pounds.
Deadlift 130x12; 170x10; 200x8; 220x4/4
EZ Bar Curl 50x8/8
Tricep Extension 50x10/10, my forearms still get this weird pain so I backed off.
Concentration Curl 10x30; 15x20
Dumbbell Extension 10x30; 15x20
Leg Curl 45x15; 50x12; 55x10; 65x6; 60x8; 45x10
Leg Extension 50x30; 50x25; 60x20; 65x20; 60x25
Tomorrow is bodyfat check in! Wish me luck and the ability to walk there!
I wanted to slam my arms, but because of this pain in my forearms I had to back off. Figured it was OK to hit legs today because Weds is bench day anyway. On Friday I hope I can do more on arms and give them a good working over. Then I'll be back to sane workouts next week!
Friday, November 18, 2005
11/18/05 Squat Day!
My back/shoulder workout went well also. I'm noticing that I'm developing "traps" and then my wife also commented on that this morning. Nice. I'm not doing anything specifically for traps, but it's a side effect of the other exercises I do.
I did end up doing 20 minutes of cardio at lunch yesterday.
I took next week off of work, but I'll still be working out, and trying to update the blog.
* * *
Personally things are going great overall. Went last night to see an elder Chicano poet named Raul Salinas. Also performing was a local group of young guys called Con Razon. The bass player is 17, the drummer looked younger, and the guitar player/singer was the older brother of the drummer. Looked like early 20s to me. They were good. It was nice. I also dropped the idea to the organizers that my kids are playing music as well. This will be a series on the Chicano Movement so hopefully we can get a gig or two out of it.
Working on writing, ear-training, sight singing and such. I do pretty well playing by ear, but I want to understand deeper what I'm hearing. I also want to be able to transcribe. Since people are asking me for lessons I'd like to have stuff written out for them and I haven't found the music I play written out. There's one book that goes to a CD of classic Tejano stuff, but the transcription sucks in my opinion. I'm thinking that when I get good enough at this, I'll correct and improve the transcription and send it to the publishers and offer to finish the rest of the book.
Kids have a performance tomorrow night with their voice class and on Sunday there is a March to Give Homage to the Petroglyphs.
Angus Young top short guy! He's the same height as me.
INS Raid of Wal-Mart construction site. Amazing how the people interviewed don't blame the contractors, but blame the workers. All while they talk about unions - so much for working-class solidarity.
One Third of Cancer Deaths Avoidable. I'd like to hear what your thoughts are on this article. I'm kinda mixed on it.
Thursday, November 17, 2005
11/17/05 Money Stress
This summer we had voice lessons, modeling pictures and stuff like that. So I guess I'll hope that the settlement from my grandmother's house will help. I'll get my tooth done at least and hopefully pay off the van.
Otherwise its just extra stress. Maybe this is the connection to cortisol and why poor, working-class and some middle-class become obese more as groups.
I stayed up until close to midnight last night watching a dress rehearsal for my kids' voice class and then helping with homework. I did get to outline a song done though. And I started to read up on my music theory around jazz harmonization.
I didn't workout this morning but plan to do some cardio at lunch.
Wednesday, November 16, 2005
Chemical Weapon Use
OK, so the US troops were using all of this heavy and hot protective equipment during the invasion of Iraq because people were convinced that the Iraqi's would use chemical weapons. None were use by the Iraqi's.
Now, after the US denied using WP as a weapon it turns out they did. Let's see add that to torture, bombing wedding parties, etc...
RealAge Tips 11/16/05
Get your fill of vitamin C, especially when the temperature starts to dip.
Researchers continue to explore the potential benefits of vitamin C for combating the common cold. A recent study suggests it may be beneficial only in extreme cold. In studies of people under physical stress in very cold weather, vitamin C reduced the incidence of colds by 50 percent and symptom days by 8 percent.
Get a leg up on achy joints by exercising the pain away.
Resistance training, range of motion exercises, and walking increase quality of life and reduce pain and stiffness in people living with leg and knee osteoarthritis, a recent study reveals. For an exercise program designed especially for your needs, enlist the help of a physical therapist. To help keep you motivated, work out with a buddy.
Although logging extra hours at the office may put extra cash in your pockets, it takes a toll on your health.
Research shows that working extra hours may increase the risk of occupational injuries and illnesses, regardless of job type. In a study, people whose occupations required frequent overtime were 61 percent more likely to become injured or sick. Stick to a 40-hour workweek whenever you can.
Leg extensions and curls went well. What I'm doing now is to add weight on the extensions and then take it off for the curls. I was doing the same weight before.
* * *
Did some transcribing of "pasaditas"* from Esteban Jordan and realized that they are getting easier for me. The ear training and studying has helped. I also see how "Steve" really does thing with minor changes but makes a big difference in sound.
He studied Jazz for awhile and brought some of that in. So I'm gonna take what I'm working on and start practicing in C, G and F, then A and E. Those are the keys most people play in. I'll eventually get to D, B, Bb, Eb, and Ab. There are very few Chicano songs in Db and F# but I'll get to those eventually.
I figure within a year I'll be writing my own tweaks on Esteban an other pasaditas.
Everything is going pretty well at home. I'm taking three days off next week to have the whole week off. I hope to get some cleaning and organizing done!
*Pasaditas, aka Adornos, in English this would called ornamentation or "licks."
A good cartoon from Boondocks.
Tuesday, November 15, 2005
I'm on the run all day today. My daughter is home sick. That combination sucks. My son was home yesterday and I was running around then too.
* * *
Work seems to boil down somedays to this rhetoric about "victimization" and a weird attempt to be in control of everything - under the rhetoric of "leadership." Seems kinda co-dependent to me, but doesn't seem like that's a good conversation to have at work. I'll see about lasting it out another year just 'cause I gotta pay bills.
Things seem to be going good with the kids and school. Personally things are not bad right now, and I'll try to bask in that as much as I can.
Oh, and someone's looking into the cancer preventing properties of beer! It's about time!
Monday, November 14, 2005
11/14/05 Catching Up
Had an awesome workout. Squatted 170 for 3 sets of 8. I'll keep going up 5 to 10 pounds depending on how strong I'm feeling. My goal will be to keep at sets of 8 for awhile.
Figured since I had the day off, I'd push it. So I went for burn on the leg extensions and curls. A little lighter weight but more reps. I was still feeling it last night! I was wiped and couldn't really push my arms, mostly because I didn't rest long enough. I was trying to keep shorter rest periods.
Did some walking on both Saturday and Sunday with my wife. That was nice. We get talk and move around all at the same time.
Did a light but high rep deadlift workout. I'll be going up 20 pounds a week until I'm at sets of 5. I was doing sets of 12 today with 110 pounds. Next week I'll see how much I can get with 130, and so on.
* * *
Had a nice weekend. We're not sure about the kids staying in voice class. The teacher doesn't listen very well to what we'd like.
We went Saturday to a graduate recital for a friend in Viola at the university. It was really cool. The kids thought it was cool, but still nodded off at times. She had worked on some of those songs for 3 years!!! Puts things in perspective.
Wrote a "Study" for piano and guitar yesterday. It wasn't as hard as I thought, and it actually sounds allright. Its not complicated or anything like that, but it should be a good start with the kids.
Also going through this jazz composition book. Just getting ideas. My voice has been scratchy so I haven't done as much as the sightsinging as I'd like. I'll get back on it this week.
Bueno, this Chicano has a lot more to say but it'll have to wait, got stuff to rush off to.
Thursday, November 10, 2005
Dr. Hussman's Info
Now I've been on a steady stream of working out and slowly changing my diet for almost 11 months now. So when I saw Hussman's Page on Bodybuilding.com, I thought it would be good to share that.
* * *
Things are going well. Still thinking about the possibility of a 75k/year job that I passed up (before I knew how much more it was gonna pay!). It would be good for bills, but I don't know if it would have been good for the rest of me.
I'm going to start working on writing some blues instrumentals. We have rehearsal this weekend and I'm still waiting for a call back on a job at a casino resort for a conference. That would be really nice, but I'm getting concerned because we haven't heard. Of course this woman called a month ago and said she'd call me next Monday, and it took like 3 weeks to get it together.
Anyway, I also heard a "rock and rythm" band from a middle-school on the radio today. They were pretty good. Motivated me to keep pushing the kids to get together what they say they want - a really good band. I think its gonna be up to me to keep the inspiration up during these weird high school years. Like I've said before, even if they don't totally get into it, I want them to have the basics nailed enough that if they decide to go for it later they won't have to struggle with fundamentals.
Wednesday, November 09, 2005
One Rep Max Table
1 * 100
2 * 95
3 * 90
4 * 88
5 * 86
6 * 83
7 * 80
8 * 78
9 * 76
10 * 75
11 * 72
12 * 70
USING THE TABLE: This is how you use the table. Find the number of reps to concentric failure that you can perform with a certain weight. In other words, if you can only do eight reps with a certain weight and could not possible do another full rep, that is your point of failure. Find the percentage associated with that number of repetitions from the table above.
Now, divide the weight that you can do by that percentage using decimals (83 percent equals .83) and that will give you an approximation of your one repetition maximum. For example, if you can perform 10 reps with 175 lbs. in the bench press, that means that 175 lbs. is 75% (0.75) of your one repetition maximum. So you would take 175 divided by .75 and that would equal 233 lbs.
This table give me a little higher number than other calculators, but its just a guess. If I was serious and competing, then I'd now for sure, but for the meantime, this is more than enough.
The rest of my workout went well also. Not bad. Feeling good about it. Staying at the same weight, so I'm hoping that I'm burning off fat and gaining some muscle. Guess that's a constant worry and I'll just have to deal with it until the 22nd.
* * *
Things seem to be going well overall. Someone had told me they were gonna tell me about a job. Instead they told my boss. Sounds like a good job. I really don't think I was up for a corporate gig. But it would have been nice if the other person would have followed through on the invite.
The extra money would have been great, but I don't know if worth it. To make big bucks for a year and then take off would have been nice.
Anyway, like I said, overall things are pretty darn good.
Tuesday, November 08, 2005
11/8/05 Cardio Day
Minimal soreness in my middle back from the deads yesterday. Nothing too bad.
* * *
Personal stuff - everything's pretty good. I finished my antibiotics for the tooth infection. Noticing that my scratchy throat is coming back. I will have to go to the doc soon if this keeps up. I'm going to schedule a check-up. Hopefully I can get an appointment before the 23rd to keep it lined up with the bodyfat check.
Still working on my sightsinging and some blues piano stuff. The scratchy throat is making it hard. No pain, just irritation. Maybe I just need to increase my C intake.
Monday, November 07, 2005
Seguro Que Hell Yes!
Legs were stiff all weekend. They didn't hurt much. But if I sat for a long time and got up it was hard to walk. Nothing too bad, but something to observe as I plan to keep slowly increasing my squat poundage.
Deadlifted 210 today. 3 sets of 4. I think I'll go down to 170ish and do sets of 8 and increase that weight until I can do 210 for 8. Then I'll start pushing again at higher weight for sets of 5. I'm using my standard weights right now. But once I push past 210, I'll probably go to using the olympic weights. My leg and arm workout for today went good. Did 55 for sets of 12 and 8 on extensions and curls. Did 50 for sets of 10 on arms. Will go down and start coming back up on legs, probably to 45, then 50 and 55. Arms will continue to go up 5 pounds each workout until I get to a weight where I'm only lifting for 8. Then I'll go up 2.5 or 5 depending on how it feels.
I got up to 170 on the bench for 2. So I went back down 115, then 135. I'll probably go 140 and stay there if I can't do sets of 8.
My weight is staying at 169-173. I'm gonna try to be please and on the 22nd I'll find out if any of that is muscle increase and fat decrease.
* * *
Personally I'm on a natural high for today. These are the things I'm focusing on from recent to past.
The Dia de Los Muertos event yesterday rocked! I think we had 1500-2000 people turn out. For Albuquerque, that's a HUGE event. I am in charge of the entertainment at the event and we changed some things that need tweaking. But overall it was freakin awesome! We had Danzantes outside. There were two samba drumming groups outside that were polite enough to take turns and stay far enough away from the danzantes not to drown them out.
Indoors we had an elementary school mariachi group then two chingon Chicano blues/rock bands. There's some fine tuning to the changes we made, but overall I'm happy with my work. Someone was sending reporters to me saying I was a key organizer. I never thought of myself that way, but I realized duh, the entertainment is a big deal!!!
I'm already planning ideas for next year! Hope to see some of you there.
I'm still feeling good about average guy stuff. Robert sent me this link for powerlifting.
The music stuff is going well. The kids are still happy about being called bad ass and I'm hoping to keep things going there. We may go jam with the blues guys after new years. That would be cool for them.
I'm still keeping the support of a co-worker saying I look "good." And another co-worker being proud of my 170 bench.
Well, that's all for now!
Friday, November 04, 2005
How Big Can You Get? Don't Spend A Dime Until You Read This is one of those articles that talks about realistic expectations.
One rep Max testing Guidelines seem to be good to help one figure out where one is on bench and leg presses.
I've been wanting to write a post about the fine print in many ads that say "results not typical." Maybe soon.
11/4/05 Hell Yeah!
Today I didn't feel bad at all about any of my lifts. I'm sticking with increasing my 3 basic lifts - deadlift, bench and squat. I'll work on the rest, but I know you can only push in so many directions at one time.
I'm not losing weight, but my pants still fit alright so that's good. I will be adding some intensity to my cardio and cut soda from my diet. As for my lifts, I'll keep going up slow but steady on the basic lifts and go up depending on how I'm feeling on the lighter and support lifts.
The ultimate goals I had for these lifts were/are bench 225, squat and dead 320. But as I learn about my body and its potential all of this may change. As a 5'2" guy who should weigh around 155 instead of 170, I'll see. I haven't seen any charts for lifters my size so I'll just keep guessing.
* * *
This all is going well along with the idea that this guy who is an awesome guitarist complimenting my kids group. I try to keep in mind that a friend of mine also told me that I am the best accordionist he's played with.
I guess I'll be holding these things up to myself and hope that they eventually drown out the crappy background message. Maybe I'll even think I'm good at my day job too! I've been told I'm a great meeting facilitator, so I need to just run with that.
A few people tell me I'm too hard on myself and I always tell others not to be hard on themselves. It's time for me to work at walking the walk.
Thursday, November 03, 2005
The "Average" Guy
Darn that little voice.
Anyway today at a staff meeting we were doing appreciations of each other and I appreciated her for talking with me about workout stuff and mentioning that my clothes fit better. She then asked me to announce how much I was benching. Everyone, even the guys seemed impressed, so I thought I'd look up what the "average" guy lifts.
Average Guy stats:
The average guy is 175 pounds and 5'9". Well, at least I'm close to average on weight, just 7" shorter! So maybe 157.5 would be my "average." If I can muscle up, that weight wouldn't be too bad.
So here's the scoop - (this is for one repetition)
The average 20-29 year old benches 180 pounds
The average 30-39 year old benches 158 pounds
The average 40-49 year old benches 143 pounds
The average 50-59 year old benches 128 pounds
The average 60-69 year old benches 116 pounds
For average, I should be able to do 27 push-ups, 36 sit-ups in good form within 1 minute. And run a mile and a half in 12:51. I don't know if I'm there yet. I may measure soon. But I'm happy to be benching above average. And I'm happy that I'll be benching at least 180 by the end of the year!!!
If you take these by 90% (my difference in height from the average guy) then I'm doing really good! 142 would be my max if you calculated straight across. But I think there is a more scientific scale they use in powerlifting for this.
OK, I'm gonna finish learning what's average.
* * *
Saw a movie called DIG! about two groups. One called The Dandy Warhols and the other called The Brian Jonestown Massacre. Interesting.
Keeping up on my sightsinging stuff. I may get good at this.
Wednesday, November 02, 2005
I actually don't know the health impacts of marijuana. But I've been thinking that if class status causes so much stress it makes sense people would self-medicate.
My elbows/forearms are still not ready to do heavy curls but I can increase weight a little bit. I'm gonna have to really work it to make sure I get some fat off for the 22nd bodyfat check. Giving up sodas should help.
* * *
Personal life? Everything's pretty stable this week. Looks like one group will have a gig for New Year's Eve. My kids' group may play at the Sandia Resort in December. That will be cool, and its a paid gig. They're happy about it. Gigs is what keeps them psyched.
I've been working on my sightsinging and eartraining. The eartraining book I ordered came in. It's good, but of course, I'll have to figure out how to do the exercises for myself. Luckily I think I can use the computer to do the transcription exercises. I'll also be able to use it with the kids.
I've been working with them on recognizing the 1 beat, and chord changes for a 12 bar blues progression. Also some basics of soloing over a blues progression. This week I'm gonna add note recognition. I'll hit a note on the keyboard and have them try to match it. My hunch is that they don't hear everything that's going on. I don't either, but I have more years in my belt to get through stuff easier than they do. I would have done a degree in music if I could have passed eartraining class. Funny because I play by ear.
Come to think of it I would have been a physicist if I could pass calculus. But I could ace my physics classes, go figure!
Tuesday, November 01, 2005
Public Health stuff
If you're like me you were taught growing up that health is your individual problem. Public health talks about external factors that impact health of the population as a whole. Often its hard to figure out the difference between the apples and oranges so to speak.
Maybe the Population Health Forum has good stuff. I'll check it out but also feel free to see yourself.
Inequality Kills - DDLM Pondering
"Does inequality really matter? The poor have what their grandparents would think unimaginable luxuries - TVs, telephones and washing machines. So why should it matter to them if in some unseen stratosphere the gated kleptocrats on company boards award themselves staggering sums of money? Does anyone really mind the gap?"
"However rich a country is, it will still be more dysfunctional, violent, sick and sad if the gap between social classes grows too wide. Poorer countries with fairer wealth distribution are healthier and happier than richer, more unequal nations."
"Life expectancy in rich nations correlates precisely with levels of equality. So Greece, with half the GDP per head, has longer life expectancy than the US, the richest and most unequal country with the lowest life expectancy in the developed world. The people of Harlem live shorter lives than the people of Bangladesh. When you take out the violence and drugs, two-thirds of the reason is heart disease. Is that bad diet? No, says Wilkinson, it is mainly stress, the stress of living at the bottom of the pecking order, on the lowest rung, the stress of disrespect and lack of esteem. Bad nutrition does less harm than depression."
"Wilkinson's message is that social environment can be more toxic than any pollutant. Low status and lack of control over one's life is a destroyer of human health and happiness. The wealth gap causes few to vote or participate in anything in a world of fear, conflict and hostility."
"It is not primarily five-a-day fruit and veg or obesity that need targeting, but social injustice itself."
OK go read the rest for yourself.
Woke up today coughing and tired so I'll have to walk at lunch and/or dinner.
According to Muscle and Fitness magazine - "drinking large amounts of beverages sweetened with fructose adds bodyfat - even when you consume fewer calories overall." Guess that makes the eliminating sodas a non-debatable issue for the next 3 weeks at least.
They also said that for burning calories taking rests of less than one minute between sets is more important than doing high repetitions. So I may try that too, lifting about 4-8 reps instead of 8-12 but going at it with shorter rests. I'm also going to up my creatine from 3mg to 5 or 6mg. Trying to keep what muscle I have while continuing to burn off the gut.