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Sunday I had to cut back on my push ups due to the fact that I’ve been doing some work on my back.  The extra work with my arms made my muscles quite tired.  Yesterday I cut back on my sit ups so I could spend some time in the workout room and because with the added exercises I’ve been feeling a little run down.  I don’t want to burn myself out.

Due to the fact that I do a minimalist workout, I don’t have a set schedule where I spend a lot of time in the gym.  Yesterday being my couch to 5k week 3, day 3 I set aside 30 minutes to go to the workout room.  Couch to 5k is an interval program which I fully took advantage of.  I did a little stretching and walked to the workout room (which is across the street from me) for my 5 minute warm up.  I had a couple of minutes so I did a couple of my batwing exercises with my weights.  I then got on the treadmill for my first minute and a half run.  After that was complete I went back to the weights and did my back workouts until it was time to run again.  I followed this routine for the duration of the half hour.

I feel good.  My legs and shoulders are tired today, however.  I wish my ice maker in my fridge was faster so I could take an ice bath after every run because it makes such a big difference.  Today being my squats day I could use that recovery method.  Still, I’m confident I can get in all of my squats.  I did 100 of them on Saturday and would like to stick with that number.

Yesterday my wife looked at me and said I look like I’m in great shape.  That was a good feeling.  I still have a long way to go but this was the first time she noticed.  It is things like this that drive me to keep going.  I’m enjoying getting in shape.  It is a fun journey and I’m thankful that I have this opportunity.

Have a wonderful day! I’m off to make lunch for my kids and watch USA vs North Korea in soccer. Go USA!

This is one of my favorite quotes. When I’m struggling to finish a run I just say “Pain is temporary, quitting lasts forever”

kaftan to bikini

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I struggled with my push ups yesterday.  Still, I managed to do 150.  The last set of 25 was surprisingly easier than the first set of 25.  The minimalist in my says that it is okay that I didn’t get in 200 push ups like I did last week.  The statistic obsessed guy in me was slightly disappointed.  Still, working on my back has become more important and if I was able to get to 200 before doing back workouts I can do it going forward.  Besides, 150 is still a good workout and will build muscle.

Today is one of those days where I feel tired and don’t want to workout.  I need to run today but I need to get to the grocery store as well.  I have a lot of sit ups to do but I’ll get them in.  I’ve found on days like today where I just get up and make myself go I perform very well.  Saturday I had a bad run because I didn’t hydrate enough.  Today I’m determined not to have that problem again.

I’ve also decided to work on my back muscles on the days I run.  The workout room I run in has some nice weights and benches where I can do my Batwing exercise, face pulls, and overhead band pull apart.  These exercises were given to my, as I’ve said before, by my friend Aaron.  They are designed to work the muscles in my back.  The reason for this is because my shoulder blades are starting to stick out too far due to the fact that my pecs have become so strong.  It is very obvious when I do push ups.  I lovingly call these exercises “Push up killers” because they have made my push ups harder and knocked 50 reps off my high score!

Top 15 Reasons To Run
From: TheRUNiverse.com

The reason people achieve greatness is because they are willing to do things that others don’t want to do.  I found this quote about David Beckham and thought I’d pass it along.

David Beckham’s former manager at Manchester United said that he “practiced with a discipline to achieve an accuracy that other players wouldn’t care about.”

You may not be training to be a great soccer player but doesn’t this give you inspiration to be passionate about whatever you do?

Yesterday was a busy day.  I did 100 squats.  A big number for me!

I enjoy Saturdays for many reasons but one of the big reasons is being able to eat whatever I want.  I didn’t really go crazy this week, however.  I enjoyed a large sub from a local Italian restaurant and some chips and brownies later in the day.  I only gained 3 lbs which should be easy to work off this week.  Last week I did well until Wednesday when I ate a pickle.  I woke up Thursday and had gained over 3lbs.  Pickles are okay to have on slow carb diet and this pickle contained no sugar.  The only thing I can think of is there was salt in the pickle and I retained water.  I do drink a lot of water but I should have lost that water weight pretty quickly.  Unfortunately I didn’t.  Those last two days of my week are where I really lose and I ended up being the same weight yesterday as I was the week before.  This week I have decided to stick to my normal foods and not eat anything outside of the norm.

I also got back on the treadmill yesterday.  I hadn’t run in a week and after running some errands for a couple of hours I came home and went running without drinking enough water.  This was a big mistake and even though I completed my run, it as a very difficult run.  It was Week 3, Day 2 of couch to 5k.  I ran a total of 9 minutes but the to longest runs were 3 minutes each.  Couch to 5k is an interval based training program that has you run longer intervals each week.  I do not like to struggle in my runs but at least I finished. Monday I will finish my week 3 runs and I’ll be sure to drink plenty of water prior to running.

My wife is talking about us running in a color run together.  It is a 5k where people throw colorful powder at you and by the end of it your clothes are all colorful.  I want to run a tough mudder which is more of an obstacle course type run.  A friend of mine from Michigan is running in one next summer and I would like to run in it as well.  If I’m not able to make it up to Michigan then I may try to enter the one in Jacksonville.  If I feel ready I might even do the run in Tampa in December.

When I was a scrawny kid (I was quite skinny) I used to stick my shoulder blades out to make my friends laugh.  I didn’t just stick them out, they were way out there!  I could have floated on water and used them as sails.  Over the past year I’ve worked on my posture and felt I had made some improvements.  A couple of days ago my wife took a video of me doing push ups and showed me how my shoulders stuck out so far while I do them.  I was horrified.  My back was straight but I looked like a hunch back!

I have a good friend that I met on twitter.  We’ve actually never met in real life but we email back and forth.  His name is Aaron and he is a weight lifter who has plans to compete in weight lifting.  He lifts weight that would break my arms off if I tried to lift it.  I asked him for advice on my shoulder blades and he prescribed some exercises for me.  One of which I needed a set of 10 lb weights.  The el cheapo in me ended up at Play It Again Sports where I picked up a couple of  10 lb hand weights that look like they got someone in good shape.  They show signs of use but to me that’s personality.  After my run I did a bat wing exercise  for my back and never knew how heavy 10 lbs could feel.  Aaron got a kick out of this but assured me that working small muscles like that will make a big difference in the future.

While weight training was not part of my original plan, I have a weak back that needs some attention.  The weights were only $12 and they’re easy to carry around so it wasn’t a big deal to pick them up.

Today is push ups day and I’m struggling with them.  I did 200 push ups  on Thursday.  I don’t believe this is why I’m struggling.  I believe it is from my bat wing exercise.  I may have to scale back my push ups a little bit in order to get my back muscles caught up.  In the long run it should help me overall.

I do feel like my minimalist workout is helping.  I’m seeing muscles develop and feel stronger all the time.  It is all about dedication.  I started a plan and stuck to it.  A little here and there, not even hard work, and here I am two months later doing things I never imagined I could do.  Wish me luck on the rest of today’s push ups!

Let me start with a little minimalist workout tracking update.  I did 170 sit ups yesterday despite being mesmerized by the Olympic Opening Ceremony in London for four hours.  How cool was it seeing London go from a small village to an industrialized city and having the queen sky dive with James Bond?

I generally consider myself a pacifist.  I also grew up playing sports and watching the Olympics.  To me, the Olympics are the pinnacle of athletic ability.  I don’t believe there is a higher goal in all of sports than the chance to represent your country and compete against the rest of the world.  There is also a political aspect to the Olympics whether we want to admit it or not.

In 1936 we saw an extreme instance of this where Adolf Hitler and Nazi Germany hosted the Olympics in Berlin.  Berlin, of course, a long time symbol of communism and extreme bigotry.  Adolf Hitler brought his perfect white athletes and sat and watched as Jesse Owens, a black man from the United States won 4 gold medals in track and field.  Not only that but Hitler’s propaganda film maker Leni Riefenstahl got it on film.  Before the Olympics, Hitler had made claims that his Aryan athletes were  superior to ethnic African athletes.  On a side note, Jesse Owens was a man of class and instead of commenting negatively on Hitler he simply told of how Hitler passed him and waved to him.

While the Olympics are generally a very civil event, I love my country and cheer for team USA as they go for gold in any sport they play in.  The pacifist in me wishes we could settle all wars with festive events like the Olympics.  The realist in me knows that this is not possible.  The political element makes it seem more important, however.

As a kid I imagined being an Olympic athlete.  To me there is no higher honor.  Men and women have competed for championships in their sport but there are champions who have never played in the Olympic games.  It represents the best of the best in the entire world.  Over 200 countries have sent their best of the best in each sport and only one individual or one team will hold the gold medal in the end.  It is a concept that fascinates me to this very day and one which I pass on to my kids to spark their imagination.

I have many readers from all over the world and I love and respect cultures from anywhere but I love my country and proudly cheer for them.  May the best country win!

I just created a facebook page for the blog.  You can friend me at: http://www.facebook.com/minimalist.workout

I love interacting with my readers and would love for you to friend me so we can talk more about health and fitness!

This is a sad statistic. Be the difference.

diets for all

Are you on a diet? Have you ever been on a diet? Lots of people start and most don’t finish. So where do you stand? Are you scared? Do you think you can do it?

I know personally that lots of times we can’t get victory all the time. Sometimes you have to forget how you failed last time. Learn and try again!


Remember this and prepare – if 90% of people fail at their diet then you have to make sure that you are going to do all of the things right

Only 10% of Dieters Succeed


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I feel great today and I was afraid I would be sore after doing 200 push ups yesterday.  I feel unstoppable at this point.  I can’t say that I’ll keep increasing at this rate but I’ve made a great leap forward and will be doing 200 each day this week.  I’ve talked about it before but I took the 100 push ups challenge a couple of years ago and ended the third week after being defeated in a terrible way.  Toward the  end of the third week’s push ups I collapsed face first into the floor an utter failure.

I’ve wondered, at times, if I’m too old and let my body go too long to be able to perform at the levels I did as a kid.  I’m happy to report that this isn’t the case.  I’m only 36 and have a lot of great years left in me.  If I continue the way I have been I will be much healthier in my late 30’s and 40’s and beyond than I was in my 20’s.  It’s too bad I let it go that long but I did have fun in my 20’s and I have no regrets.  Well, maybe soda which is my #1 enemy these days.

When I was 18 I worked at Burger King while in high school and even for about a year after.  One day I started seeing this old man jogging on the side of the road.  He would be there every day at the same time.  I imagined that he made up his mind one day that he wanted to be a running and went for it.  I would estimate his age at late 60’s, early 70’s.  Since he jogged close to my home I actually saw him for many years after.  Always jogging down the road much faster than I could have in my late teens or early 20’s.  I wonder what ever happened to him.

That guy probably didn’t know it but he inspired me.  I knew of quite a few people who would talk about him so I wasn’t the only person he inspired.  Motivation is contagious and once you make up your mind to do something you’ll be surprised how many people’s eye you’ll catch.  It will inspire others to make their own decision and start their journey to get in shape.

While the 100 push ups challenge is to do 100 in a row, I am still proud of my progress and will get there eventually.  For now, I’m enjoying my success of 200 for the day.

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