Pain as an Option

I’ve never met Mark but we have shared time “under a log” (metaphorically speaking). Great post Mark!

Over Long Distances

“Pain is weakness leaving the body”. This phrase is common in fitness circles of every kind, with origins from the US Marine Corps. This phrase, of course, only refers to one type of pain – that of fatigue and muscle stress when exerting energy weight lifting, running, or performing body weight PT. The guiding theory is that pushing through the pain of fatigue causes you to come back stronger.

There is some truth to that statement, but there is also another pain. Pain is essentially the human body’s way of protecting itself from debilitating injury, from furthering damage to parts of the body that have been injured in some way.

I am often asked “Why would you want to subject yourself to the torture of GORUCK/Death Race/other seemingly stupid activity?”.

The answer is complex. There is a feeling of community, of camaraderie that is unmatched in these events outside of…

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Easter Clothes?


So my mom took me pre-teen cave dwellers to visit the cousins in ‘Bammer for Easter.  I think this is the first major holiday that Mrs. McBud and I have spent without them.  They will be missed.

My mom, an attorney by day and a professional shopper on the weekends, declared that she would take them shopping for some proper church clothes for Easter.  We did that a month or two ago, but they have grown a foot between the two of them since last Tuesday, so I encouraged her to do so.

Earlier today, I got a text from my mom saying Ansley Cate got Toms and Cam got Chacos.  I totally thought Chacos was an attempt for her to type “Navy Blazer.”  I am vaguely familiar with what a Toms reference is, but I had to Google the Chacos after she assured my that was no typo.

I guess in Alabammy they actually do wear shoes to church, so the new sleds will be needed.  But what about the rest of the gear Mom?

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Paleo Challenge

Today, our box is starting a “Paleo Challenge”.  The idea is that for 6 weeks, we will all eat clean and log our meals in expectation of getting more fit for the summer bathing suit season.

I had decided not to do the challenge weeks ago as I have no desire to log what I eat, nor to be held accountable.  I have lost 30 lbs, isn’t that enough?

Well, after looking at some pictures at myself in a competition yesterday, I decided that I need to be held accountable for what I eat (and drink).

So what is Paleo you ask?

Simply put, if you can eat it in its raw state, or if you can hunt it with a spear, you can eat it.  As Steve (Chucker) says, “If it tastes good or if man made it, spit it out.”  Sage advice from a 6’4″ beanpole of a man who apparently has no taste buds except on Tuesdays when it is perfectly acceptable to inhale donuts and Oreo Golden Originals.

Fortunately, I pretty much eat meat, veggies and fruit on a regular basis.  It’s the tortilla chips and the cold beverages that accompany them that might slow me down.   (And Alicia Moore’s Mac and Cheese).

I apologize in advance to all of the ladies in the challenge who have a pound or two to lose before bikini season.  A big man is stepping up and I assure you I could lose YOUR WHOLE BODYWEIGHT and still be bigger than Weaver.

I have 78 steaks in the freezer and am ready to get at it.  See you at 3 pm for the weigh in…I’ll bring the Krispy Kremes.

Posted in CrossFit, Food, Paleo | Tagged , , , , | 2 Comments


My Calluses are Smiling

August 17th, 2011 was the first time I met Helen.  I was not terribly scared of her, but, to be sure, I respected her.  I have met her a few times since and every time we meet, our time together seems shorter by the minutes.

Yes, I am having an affair with CrossFit and Helen is one of the many “named” workouts.  They name the workouts after women and I can’t say why as my kids (or boss) might be reading this.

As I mentioned, my first encounter with Helen was August 17, 2011.  2 months after I started my CrossFit journey.  Helen is a simple (but hard) workout.  It is prescribed as follows:

3 Rounds:

  • 400m Run
  • 21 Kettlebell Swings with 53# Kettlebell
  • 12 Pull-ups

Seems easy enough, right?

Now, it may surprise you, but when I started CrossFit, I couldn’t hang from the bar, never mind do a pull-up.  As every skill at CrossFit can be scaled, they expected me to not be able to do this WOD (workout of the day) without scaling.  So, as Todd and Brack were preparing me in the pre-WOD set up, out came these large rubber bands that resembled colorful flat tires.

These bands attach to the top bar and one is supposed to hold on the the bar, stand in the band, and proceed with pull-ups, the band assisting you along the way.  It rarely goes that way the first time I have since learned.  My first band was red.  It was reallllly skinny.  When I stepped into it, it went all the way to the floor.  No assist there.  I thought I might have killed it.  I was sure someone was playing a joke on me, not just over-estimating my strength.  It offered a mere 30 lbs of help.  Apparently I needed more.  I ended up using  a red, a blue, and a green band to help me – for a combined assist of 145 lbs!  That means if someone who weighs in at 145 lbs were to stand on these bands, they wouldn’t move.  I didn’t weigh 145 lbs….not even on the moon.

On to the Kettlebells.  I had some experience with Kettlebells, as I have one at home and was sure that youtube could instruct me as well as anyone, but I listened to Brack and Todd as they taught me the finer points of the American swing.  They were convinced I wouldn’t kill myself or anyone else, so I was given the go ahead to swing away.

Finally, there was the run….did I mentioned that I was topping 260lbs at this point in my life?  Asthmatic?  It was summer?  Nobody was chasing me?  Why would I run?  I fell forward into a determined walk.  Yes, I could do this.

So, I got to meet Helen.  My first CrossFit “named” WOD.  One of “the Girls!”  My time that day?  16 minutes and 37 seconds of hell.

This past January, Helen came knocking again.  A little lighter, a lot stronger, and with much more confidence.  I managed to not only improve my time, but my need for a rainbow of rubber bands to assist me was almost gone.  I needed only the red band.  My time was 14:52.  I was pretty stoked.

Finally, after meeting Fran a few weeks ago (I’ll introduce her later), I have mastered the pull-up without bands at all.  Fran required 45 of them, and I did all of them unassisted.  However, I met Helen again this week, and elected to use the red band again, just to see how much further I have come (that and my shoulder has been a bit tight…a fact everyone knows by now, as I am a big baby when it comes to my discomfort).

My time this week?  13:11

I am looking forward to meeting Helen again.  She is special to me.  I hope to see less of her each time that we meet.  Sub 10 would be nice.

Posted in CrossFit, Fran, Helen, Stuff I like, The Girls | Tagged , , , , | 5 Comments

Where the Hell Have I Been?

I’m back……

Where have I been?  Nursing hamstrings, dealing with the kids, looking for a 12 step program for CrossFit addicts.  You know…..around.

I will be getting the blog back in gear, though it may be a bit different.  I am told that I have changed a bit.

Losing 30 pounds will do that.

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The Karate Update: Hamstrung

Well, it was bound to happen.

Getting back into Karate has been awesome.  My kids are really digging it and have already advanced to white belt/green stripe.  I couldn’t be more proud.

The other guys from way-back-when and I are having a great time reminiscing about old times.  The other night, Kevin, one of the nicest bad-ass black belts you’ll ever meet, brought in some old newspaper clippings of us from 1985-1988.  We were in the paper more than I remembered it seems.

I was very impressed with the trophies (I am not sure where all of mine went?), but mostly I was impressed at how in shape I was.   If I knew back then how good I looked, I would have been impossible to be around.  Tan, fit, able to kick your butt.  It was so awesome to see myself at my best physically!!!

So what did I do to follow that awesome  feeling up?  Pulled a hamstring.  POP!  RIP!  OUCH!

Now, hamstrung with memories of rolling on the floor in pain, I look forward to getting back out there and creating some new memories with my kids.   Hopefully they won’t take 24 years to realize how awesome they are.

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A Belt Holds up Your Pants (unless you don’t have any)

Over 20 years ago, I trained under a nationally ranked Instructor and earned a Brown Belt in an Americanized version the Chong do Kwan style of Taekwondo.

I repeat, 20 YEARS AGO!

As a teenager, I went because I thought it would help me get chicks.  It didn’t (my wit and charm did), but it taught me discipline, respect for my elders, and, most importantly, self-confidence.

We had a great school.  It was truly a family…my home away from home.  We would spend practically every weeknight sparring with each other and practicing our forms (kata).  It seems like every other weekend, we would all shuttle off to a tournament in Savannah or Atlanta.  We were actually a pretty good school, particularly in forms, and we would always come home with some hardware.

So, fast forward 20 or so years.  A good friend of mine, Joey, who went on to get his Black Belt at the same school, is now opening up a new school that is fast becoming my new home away from home.  Joey and I spend hours a night trying to get back into shape before the new school officially opens.  Many of those hours are spent remembering how limber we WERE, how much quicker we WERE, and how much, well, younger we WERE.  Though we both agree, we ARE much smarter now.

For the most part, my Brown Belt is coming out of retirement for my own selfish reasons.  I want to get the Black Belt.   It is not the end so to speak.  You don’t just finish at black, pack up and go home.  You see, it symbolizes a great deal more that I am frankly not gifted enough to express.

Our old teacher, Pat Duncan, used to say, “A belt just holds your pants up, it’s the knowledge that matters.”  Joey repeated that to me the other day.  I still have most of the knowledge….flexibility is another matter.

I suppose, however, that my greatest excitement in all of this is that both of my kids want to join.  They were so excited when the got their Gi (uniforms).  Their first lesson was how to tie the belt, how to bow and how to get in a solid front stance.

My hope is that they find the martial arts home that I had growing up.  I have often lamented on this blog about how different their childhood is and how the things that made up my childhood memories didn’t exist anymore.

This won’t be the same, nothing is, but it will be different in a good way…

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A Father’s Weakness

This morning, my daughter broke down and bawled in my arms.

She hugged me harder than anyone ever has, as her tears soaked my shirt.  I asked her what was wrong and she replied, “I don’t know.  I’m not unhappy or anything.”  Confused, she let out a tear-muffled laugh.  She doesn’t know that her body is storing up hormones that will make her nuts.  She doesn’t know that she is growing up right before my eyes and that I am scared to death.

I squeezed her in my arms as if I was holding on for dear life.  My wife came in to see what was up.  I waived her off, not wanting to share this moment when my daughter needed her dad’s shoulder to soak up her tears.  It probably won’t be my last chance, but I couldn’t let her go.

My heart breaks because, no matter how hard we try, we will never be able to stop bad things from happening to those we love….and unsolicited hormone rushes in pre-teen girls are awful.  I felt helpless and needed all at the same time.  I felt like Holden Caulfield, trying to erase all the f–k you’s in the world…to no avail.

I have 3 older sisters, so I am KEENLY aware of how nutty teenage girls can be.  But, I don’t remember Amy being that crazy when she was 9.  I guess I was too busy killing invading aliens on my Atari to notice.   I notice now, and it really sucks.

I think I am lucky to be a guy.  Sure, some of my sisters’ attributes have rubbed off on me: I know who Laura Ashley is, I know not to wear seersucker after Labor Day, and I know how to braid hair, but I am very thankful that their hormones never rubbed off on me.

Y’all have it bad.

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I Turned 40.


This past week I turned 40. 

I am at an age now that I don’t care what you think, and, yes, my age and hair color are finally synchronized.

I have a hot wife, great kids, awesome friends, and an amazing job and these facts make me very excited for the next decade.

To celebrate the end of my birthday week, I think I’ll act my age and go play video games at Chuck’s house.

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