Exercice program – 12 weeks

After a major disruption in life… I’m starting again to take care of my body, some jogging (pain free!!), some gym, and a bit of open water swimming and surfing.  I think our body is one of our greatest treasures and should be well cared for. Besides, the physical is the the first pillar of a solid human foundation. The four pillars are: physical, mental, emotional and spiritual. As they are all chained together, when you work and improve one, it has a positive impact on the others too.
So now is the perfect opportunity to set a goal, and my goal is to keep the current weight (about 75Kgs) but to lower my body fat percentage. By the scientific method of seeing pictures of bodies with different percentages and comparing with myself, i can’t be far from the 25% percent. So the goal is around 15% body fat percentage.

The Exercise Program

Disclaimer, this is my own program. I spent some time experimenting what works for me and what doesn’t. Also, it addresses lots of personal variables, as time, more vs less crowded equipments at the gym, available items, hate of abdominal crunches, etc… you can take some ideas, but beware I’m not in any way an exercise expert, so don’t do anything that can hurt your health.

Weekly Program: 4 sessions (running, swimming, 2 times at gym). The order is irrelevant, and can change from week to week.

1 – A 10k, easy sub 60m run. But with some sprints to put the heart in high revs to burn off the accumulated particulate (actually the purpose of the sprints is to become more efficient runner by working above the lactate threshold). This is the primary cardio workout.

2 – A 45m swimming session in the pool. Just to swim non-stop at an easy pace. This is the main stretch, balance and relaxing training session. It also activates the muscles that can be left behind in the gym.

3 – A couple sessions in the gym. Maximum 50m each session.

Day 1
5m warmup: easy rowing/ciclyng and joints rotations

Shoulders (light weight as warmup follow-up)
Lateral Raise DB – 2×10 (lateral deltoid)
Alternating Front Raise DB – 2×10 (anterior deltoid)

Bench Press 3 sets of 12,10 and 8
Incline bench press, 3 sets of 12,10 and 8
Flies, 3 sets of 12,10,8 reps or
Dips, 3×10

CGBP EZBar 4×10
French Press 4×10

Myotatic Crunch and
Superset of 3×10

Day 2
5m warmup: easy rowing/ciclyng and joints rotations

Shoulders (light weight as warmup follow-up)
Lateral Raise DB – 2×10 (lateral deltoid)
Rear Lateral Raise DB – 2×10 (posterior deltoid)

Cable pulldown 12,10,8
Pull-ups 15 (in many sets has needed)
Seated rows 12,10,8
Deadlifts 3×10

Stand Up or Seated Curl 4×10
EZ Bar Curl 4×10 or
Preacher BB Curl 4×10
Hammer DB Curl 3×10

Myotatic Crunch and
Superset of 3×10

Actually the hidden and true goal, is to stick with this the 12 weeks. To have the strength and discipline to follow this calendar (even in the no good mood days, brain off days, rainy days, etc). In every way, with or without visible results, it will build a stronger version of myself by doing it. So help me God.

W1: R G2 G1 S24
W2: R G2 G1 S40
W3: R G2 G1 S10 (Xmas Week)
W4: G2 R G1 S26 (New Year Week)
W5: G2 G1 R S30
W6: G2 G1 S30 R
W7: G2 S24 G1

I never saw a wild thing sorry for itself. A small bird will drop frozen dead from a bough without ever having felt sorry for itself.

David Herbert Lawrence

Lisbon Half Marathon

Finally a sub 2 hour half marathon, exactly 1h57m53s, with a lot of mixed feelings.

The first couple kilomoters, simply impossible to run properly, just a big gymkhana with all kind of non-runners in the way,  from the baby stroller to the old ladys walking hand in hand to avoid getting lost from each others, and a lot more characters in the middle…. the second third of the race did a very good time, with many sub 5 kilometers, probably sub 50m 10ks (couldn’t get all the splits), but just dropped the hammer a bit too soon, so the last 4Ks were hard, stopped and walked a couple of times, maybe the mental working due to the strong pace that somewhere started to seem harder than what i was ready/mentalized to coup with.

Except the feet blisters (as usual….), everything ok at the finish, legs, knees, muscles. Cool. By now, the sub 1h50 seems really doable, without no major change in training or life style.

Anyway, probably not in this race, for sure that is a very scenic and fun course, and the weather usually is fine this time of the year (today a bit too warm though). But have to rethink it next year, 45 minutes in a line to get the bib-numbers, they ran out of time control chips ?? (so no official time for me and others), in the race day, 45 minutes to walk/crawl 500 meters from the train station to the race start, first kilometers you don’t run you gymkhana, near Praça do Comercio gymkhana again, missed 3 aid station water supply due to all the confusion, at the end another 30 minutes just to pass through to the exit…..

Next running objectives:
sub 50m 10K
sub 5m 1500m (that is very hard)

Ultramarathon Man

Just finished reading Dean KarnazesUltramarathon Man: Confessions of an All-Night Runner – and what an excellent and inspirational book it is. What it skips about training and nutrition delivers back in double in pure emotion. It makes my mind spin, just to think how can one run for 320Kms……

Some appetizers:

«If you can’t run, then walk. And if you can’t walk, then crawl.  Do what you have to do.  Just keep moving forward and never, ever give up.»

«Some seek the comfort of their therapist’s office, other head for the corner pub and dive into a pint, but I chose running as my therapy…»

«If it comes easy, if it doesn’t require extraordinary effort, you’re not pushing hard enough: It’s supposed to hurt like hell.»

«I’d  also come to recognize that the simplicity of running was quite liberating.  Modern man has virtually everything one could desire, but too often we’re still not fulfilled.  “Things” don’t bring happiness.  Some of my finest moments came while running down the open road, little more than a pair of shoes and shorts to my name.  A runner doesn’t need much.»

«The real battle was inside my head.»

«Life is a not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and loudly proclaiming: “WOW!! What a ride!”»

«Most dreams die a slow death.  They’re conceived in a moment of passion, with the prospect of endless possibility, but often languish and are not pursued with the same heartfelt intensity as when first born.  Slowly, subtly, a dream becomes elusive and ephemeral.  People who’ve lost their own dreams become pessimists and cynics.  They feel like the time and devotion spent on chasing their dreams were wasted.  The emotional scars last forever.»

Some seek the comfort of their therapist’s office, other head for the corner pub and dive into a pint, but I chose running as my therapy…

Running 24Kms in Lisbon Marathon

This was a busy weekend, signed up for the half-marathon event that runs parallel to the Lisbon Marathon. Lousy traffic jams downtown due to traffic Sunday restrictions and the marathon itself made it impossible to get to the starting line on time. So, what we did (me and TC) was to stop the car near Restauradores and start running with the “marathonists” well ahead of the half start line.

The scenary was very nice, running along Lisbon main avenues, the river and plazas. So, the aftermath was 24Kms in 2h30~ the longest run i ever did, with the last uphill through Av. Almirante Reis very hard to the legs and knees. As always the time is not important at all for a weekend runner, but was very nice to make such a distance.

Note to myself: a full marathon IS VERY VERY HARD looking back to the mental finish after “only” 24kms

At end i also won two nasty blisters, one at each foot, maybe due to wrong socks or just the plain distance…  now i go bath my legs in cold water…