Wednesday, March 31, 2010

getting better!

Woke up still sore from "Angie" on Monday but looking forward to the unknown (I'm on a streak of not checking the twitter page). It's feels good to just walk in and find out what the workout is right then; ignorance being bliss perhaps? Anyway, in today's WOD I got to face down an old foe of mine... the stripper deadlift.

for time:
100 wall-ball @ 20lbs medicine ball
25 deadlifts @ 225lbs barbell
1,000 meter row

18:49 rx'd. Felt good today. Not fast so much as solid. I was a little slow knocking out the wall-balls, and my deadlifts took awhile to be sure, but my form was solid throughout! Bye bye stripper deadlift - hellllllooooo solid form! Finishing with the thousand meter row at the end was cake, really just a matter of staying moving.

It feels good to have a solid training day right on the heels of getting tore up by "Angie!"

Happy hump-day everybody!

Monday, March 29, 2010

back at it

After an inconsistent training schedule over the last two weeks, and more than a few beers Saturday night at Maiko sushi (FYI have some of their AWESOME sweet potato cheesecake), I needed a good inna-yo-face kinda workout... and I got it this morning!

for time:
100 pull-ups
100 push-ups
100 sit-ups
100 squats

My time was 22:17 as rx'd. Not good, but not the worst time I've ever put down either. I've let my training and diet slide, and I'm fed up with it. I'm back to paleo-alkaline as of right now!

If you like Erika's Eat Clean Live Strong, go check out Eat This! It's a paleo friendly recipe blog run by the folks at CrossFit Santa Cruz Central. Looks like some tasty stuff there.

It's going to be another beautiful central Texas day! Make it a good one y'all!

Thursday, March 25, 2010

on being relentless...

"The truth is, everything that has happened in my life that I thought was a crushing event at the time, has turned out for the better... You learn that a temporary defeat is not a permanent one. In the end, it can be an opportunity."
- Warren Buffett, from this Wall Street Journal article about college rejection letters.

Also in the article was this one from Lee Bollinger, the president of Columbia University:
To "allow other people's assessment of you to determine your own self-assessment is a very big mistake. The question really is, who at the end of the day is going to make the determination about what your talents are, and what your interests are? That has to be you."

Sunday, March 21, 2010

a "health care" rant

Yep I'm going political on the blog again, so you've been warned. I'll be back to regularly scheduled posting very soon.

OK, so over the last week I've been trying to contact my elected representative in the US House, but Congressman Doggett's office refuses to answer phone calls or even acknowledge receipt of emails. Good times. I mean, can't they dig up some intern to catch phone calls? C'mon peoples! The Senate at least has a bounce email message that goes something like:

"We got your email - don't expect any further reply. Hugs and kisses, your Senator's lowliest staffer."

The congressional public relations non-response makes the above feel all warm and cuddly. Anyhow, I realize the deluge of calls and emails they are receiving right now is probably enormous, but hey - that's part of the job.

Why am I pissed about being totally ignored by my representative (as opposed to only mildly ignored)? Well, what follows covers a small amount of what's included in the health care bill that the House of Representatives is about to vote on in the next few hours...

This excerpt is from coverage by the Economist:

...the sums are questionable. The CBO (Congressional Budget Office) process has been so thoroughly gamed that the true figures could be quite different. The Republicans claim that it will cost far more and totally reject the idea that it will cut the deficit by such a sum over the second decade…

The CBO is required to score what Congress says it will do, not what it is likely will actually be done. Republicans have accused the Democrats of ignoring some spending and promising spending cuts that may never come. Revenues from an excise tax on “Cadillac” health plans may never materialise. And spending has been back loaded to disguise its scale.

The following portion is from ABC news:

The new tax on investment income is higher than the 2.9 percent tax proposed by Obama. House Democratic leaders increased it so they could reduce the impact of a new tax on high-cost health insurance plans strongly opposed by labor unions…

Taxing the rich to pay for health insurance would represent a significant departure from the way Americans have financed safety net programs in the past

Both Social Security and Medicare are supported by broad-based payroll taxes. Although the rich pay more — they have bigger incomes — the burden is shared by the middle class and even the working poor…

Medicare payroll taxes traditionally have been low and predictable: a 1.45 percent tax on wages, paid by both employers and workers. The money is taken out of workers' pay before they see it. There are no forms to file, no deductions to claim.

Since 1962, the share of the economy devoted to health care has risen to about 17% from 6%. Today, health entitlements account for about 5% of GDP but on current trend will rise to 7% in 2025 and about 15% in 2062.

That is the problem President Obama
inherited, as it were. Yet rather than fundamentally changing these incentives, he chose instead to create a new middle-class insurance entitlement that will transform the way U.S. health care is financed, and thus delivered. Such a "universal" system has been the core liberal aspiration since the age of Bismarck. But time and again this political ambition has been thwarted by American individualism, distrust of government power, the checks and balances of the political system, and, every so often, good judgment in Washington.

Once the health-care markets are put through Mr. Obama's de facto nationalization, costs will further explode. The Congressional Budget Office estimates ObamaCare will cost taxpayers $200 billion per year when fully implemented and grow annually at 8%, even under low-ball assumptions. Soon the public will reach its taxing limit, and then something will have to give on the care side. In short, medicine will be rationed by politics, no doubt with the same subtlety and wisdom as Congress's final madcap dash toward 216 votes.

As in the Western European and Canadian welfare states, doctors, hospitals and insurance companies will over time become public utilities. Government will set the cost-minded priorities and determine what kinds of treatment options patients are allowed to receive. Medicare's price controls will be exported to the remnants of the private sector.
All bureaucratized systems also restrict access to specialists and surgeries, leading to shortages and delays of months or years. This will be especially the case for the elderly and grievously ill, and for innovation in procedures, technologies and pharmaceuticals.
Eventually, quality and choice—the best attributes of American medicine in spite of its dysfunctions—will severely decline.

Democrats deny this reality, but government rationing will become inevitable given that overall federal spending is already at 25% of GDP and heading north, and Medicare's unfunded liabilities are roughly two and a half times larger than the entire U.S. economy in 2008. The ObamaCare bill already contains one of the largest tax increases outside the Great Depression or the world wars, including a major new tax on investment income—and no one seriously believes it will be enough.

Come to think of it - faced with the situation outlined above and voting "for" this healthcare bill - I can almost understand why my congressman won't take my calls. Now that I'm all pissed off again I'm going for a run. Peace.

Friday, March 19, 2010


"Wisdom is the principal thing; therefore get wisdom: and with all your getting get understanding."
- Proverbs 4:7

I recently read an excellent article titled The Carter Syndrome. While awkwardly named, I found it to be an good take on foreign policy in the Obama presidency. The author is Walter Russell Meade, who put out an excellent book on what he sees as the four "schools of thought" of American foreign policy:

In general, U.S. presidents see the world through the eyes of four giants: Alexander Hamilton, Woodrow Wilson, Thomas Jefferson, and Andrew Jackson. Hamiltonians share the first Treasury secretary's belief that a strong national government and a strong military should pursue a realist global policy and that the government can and should promote economic development and the interests of American business at home and abroad. Wilsonians agree with Hamiltonians on the need for a global foreign policy, but see the promotion of democracy and human rights as the core elements of American grand strategy. Jeffersonians dissent from this globalist consensus; they want the United States to minimize its commitments and, as much as possible, dismantle the national-security state. Jacksonians are today's Fox News watchers. They are populists suspicious of Hamiltonian business links, Wilsonian do-gooding, and Jeffersonian weakness.

Moderate Republicans tend to be Hamiltonians. Move right toward the Sarah Palin range of the party and the Jacksonian influence grows. Centrist Democrats tend to be interventionist-minded Wilsonians, while on the left and the dovish side they are increasingly Jeffersonian, more interested in improving American democracy at home than exporting it abroad.

The full article is here, courtesy of

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Happy St. Patrick's Day!

"May God grant you always:
A sunbeam to warm you,
a moonbeam to charm you,
a sheltering angel so nothing can harm you.
Laughter to cheer you,
faithful friends near you,
and whenever you pray - heaven to hear you."
- Irish blessing

Have fun and be safe y'all!

Friday, March 12, 2010

The 2010 CrossFit Games Central/Southern Texas Sectionals

IT'S ON!!!

Over 200 athletes will compete in a weekend long event organized and run by more than 100 volunteers. There are already more than 400 spectators registered to attend!

This.... Is.... Going.... To.... Rock.

Good luck to all the competitors! See y'all there!

If you aren't going to be there, you can be square and check for live updates!

12 March 2010

WOD @ CrossFit Central
"for time"
200 meter run
15 American kettlebell swings @ 2 pood
15 wall ball @ 20lbs medicine ball
200 meter run
15 American kettlebell swings
15 wall ball
200 meter run
15 American kettlebell swings
15 wall ball
200 meter run

My time was 11:30 rx'd. I got frustrated because I felt I was moving too slow by the start of the second round of KB swings, and since I was thinking about moving too slowly instead of focusing on each rep... I ended up moving too slowly. Ahhh the power of the mind. It sucks in when you realize what you've done to yourself! Lesson learned. From now on I'm going to be more disciplined with my thoughts/self-talk during a workout.

It turns out I got to put that lesson learned into practice immediately!

find your max height box jump

We were allowed only one step, no running start - and then just jump! Garth got an awesome 49.5" box jump in the class before us, so I was pumped up for this! This was truly a mental game, you couldn't allow any doubt in at all. Hell, you can't even think about not having doubts. It may sound trite, but I just kept saying "I can do this" in my head and quickly visualizing the completed jump, and you know what? I did it!

I got a 50" box jump!

Then in the wonderful way that CrossFit builds you up, but doesn't let your ego run wild, Charles came in to the class right after us and leaped to 53"! Talk about awesome to see! Great job Charles!

This morning I learned a powerful lesson, and what followed felt like play time! Love it!

Happy Friday y'all!

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

10 March 2010

"Consider what you give your attention to each day. It's a precious resource, and determines the shape of your life."
-Leo Babauta

I lifted the quote above from the post How to Reclaim Your Attention over at zenhabits. Read and heed!

WOD @ CrossFit Central
weighted strict pull-ups

AMRAP in 12 minutes:
12 russian kettlebell swings @ 2 pood KB
12 push-ups

my pull-up weights:
25-35-45 (got a minor muscle strain in my upper back on Monday so I did fewer sets, felt good though)

I completed 12 rounds + 12 swings and 5 push-ups rx'd. Fun!

Happy hump-day everybody!

Saturday, March 6, 2010

06 March 2010

"The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing."
- Edmund Burke

In Afghanistan a team of twelve Air Force Pararescuemen evacuated and treated over three hundred Afghan civilians after they were trapped by 36 avalanches in a place called Salang pass. Outstanding! The full story is here.

Rest day!

Friday, March 5, 2010

05 March 2010

WOD @ CrossFit Central
AMRAP in 20 minutes:
3 handstand push-ups
6 dumbbell cleans @ 45lbs DBs
9 pull-ups

I completed 7 rounds + 3 HSPU as rx'd. Fun! The full clean with 45lbs DBs slowed me down, had to break those up each time. Feeling good!

Happy Friday y'all!

and remember:

"Don't ask the barber whether you need a haircut."
- Warren Buffett, from his 2009 letter to Berkshire Hathaway shareholders

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

dig the quote

"If you do what you've always done, you'll get what you've always gotten."
- Anthony Robbins

photo courtesy of flickr

Just an awesome shot. This dude has some amazing skydiving photos... makes me want to go again!

03 March 2010

WOD @ CrossFit Central
"CrossFit total" continued...

285 PR - 295 PR - 300F

Felt good today! I really wanted 300 lbs (which would be 2x body weight for me), but like coach Rippetoe says:

"Deadlifts that are too heavy to pull generally don't take very long, the bar just kinda lays there."

Next time. Happy hump day y'all!