What you tolerate you perpetuate.
Wanting to take a break from the more serious natured audio books I’ve been listening to recently, I found Jim Gaffigan’s Dad is Fat in my recommended reading list. Since I’m a fan of his comedy and wanted something a bit lighter, I added my name to the hold list at the local library (using Overdrive of course) for the audio book.
Starting off, I immediately recognized the narrator as Jim Gaffigan himself, an added bonus. In this book Jim offers short chapters about various portions of being a new dad, figuring out the new additions as they come, managing as a dad, and juggling life’s responsibilities after becoming a dad for the fifth time. While I can’t relate to that level of mastery he has seemingly acquired with five kids, I recognized many of his struggles and oddities as those that I’ve faced with just two kids.
The whole books comes across, intentionally or not, as an extended ode to his super-hero wife Jeannie. Jim, like many of us dads, assumes that the more attractive partners in our relationships have had special instruction in child rearing, but throughout the chapters in this book you see a story of a dad who figures it out, and makes it work, documenting all the idiosyncrasies of fatherhood along the way.
Any parent who has balanced work / life responsibilities while raising their little ones will likely find this audio book an entertaining reminder of the joys that we have been through, and the joys that our kids bring us. For any expecting parents, this is the book of things they don’t tell you in official parenting books, give it a read to know what you’re REALLY about to get into.
Ohh how I ache this morning.. Currently I am recovering from last night’s workout of: three rounds of 24 Switch Lunges, 110 lb Farmer Walk @ 200 feet and a 264 yard backwards run, but that’s not the story, lets talk about my garage gym that helped me feel these ‘growing pains’
About 18 months ago, I joined TNL CrossFit Tampa. I lost my cookies on the first visit and I was hooked. It was a bit pricey compared to a regular gym and the only time I could fit in the schedule was butt-crack early in the morning. Anna was only a few months old, Natalie was just starting back to work, and right in the midst of it all, I changed to a job that required constant travel, so I stopped.
Last year I was running late at night, making quite the habit of it for some time. I would help put the kids to bed, and go for a run. It was good, I was feeling great, continually increasing my pace and endurance, then life happened and that habit died as well.
Earlier this year I hit a number on the scale that is OK for most guys my age and height, but for me, it was a high point I’ve never seen, and I wasn’t particularly comfortable with. My clothes were tight, carrying the kids got me winded, and then I realized, this is not how you age gracefully.
A few months ago I started watching what I ate which helped me get back to a more reasonable weight, but still not to ‘sexy beast’ level that I was aiming for. Since I am the worst person in the world to keep to my diet, I knew I had to find something to compensate the occasional doughnut or the late night cereal cravings, I had to get active again.
After evaluating the gym options, pricing, and location I decided that I should just build my own gym in my empty garage. Since CrossFit style workouts work well for me, that was the type of equipment I would need.
After coercing my brother-in-law, Wes, to join in my adventure, I started to procure equipment. I found some on Craigslist, built a few items, and picked up a few items from a local gym supplier. For me, the accountability of having someone show up at your house makes it hard to allow myself to skip a day, and working out with friends/family is a good enough motivator not to slack during the workout. It is a good setup for me.
So far I have built 2 PlyoBoxes, Pair of Parallettes, and a Pull up Bar. I bought a set of weights, bars, and heavy kettle bells from a guy on Craigslist (pictured here) and we
stole got a really good deal on a squat rack from Craigslist, and to round out the initial collection, I picked up some odds and ends from a local retailer called Valor Fitness (their prices are MUCH more reasonable when you go to their warehouse than those listed on their website)
So far, we’ve been going at it for three nights a week, for about a month or so. There are a few other piece of equipment I want to pickup, but none are essential at this point. We have a friend who does power lifting who joins us on Sunday morning workouts, as well as a friend who is a CrossFit coach who is scheduled to start joining us soon as well. I get to squeeze in some people time during our workouts in great, as occasionally forget to do with our busy schedules. Life its good.
As an added bonus to being in better shape, I have met a few neighbors who also workout in their garages; building the community bonds through sweaty garages is awesome.
When you look at people who are successful, you will find that they aren’t the people who are motivated, but have consistency in their motivation. – Arsene Wenger
Arsenal football coach Arsene Wenger shared these simple, yet clear words about motivation. This simple statement describes what I’m doing wrong in my search for greatness, consistency. I often have
great ideas that I should pursue, or an angle to attract new opportunities, yet the follow through, or consistency in my motivation is what lacks.
As I’ve been mulling over the ebbs and flows of my motivation, I recalled wavy lines of a biorhythm chart; you put in your date of birth and today’s date, and it magically knows where your emotional, physical, and intellectual highs and lows are. I’m not sure how this magic works, or even how scientific the 1990’s website used to generate the below biorhythm actually is, but it’s fun. I’m not sure which one of those lines my motivation is tied to, but if I had to guess, its must be the physical one, as I’m definitely not on the top of my game these last few days, and I don’t have the motivation to figure it out right now, maybe in a few weeks when it comes back to me.
To improve is to change, so to be perfect is to have changed often. Winston Churchill
I’ve had change in the past few years, mostly of my own accord, mostly for the better, but not always comfortable. I am currently at a comfortably idle position in my career which my trusted advisors say is not always a bad thing; something I should take advantage of to do things for me, like blog more. For me, it is a change that puts me out of my comfort zone, makes me antsy and I don’t like it, but all my advisors say I need to stick with it, as too much change is no so good for the resume.
Lets see where it takes us.