Health and Fitness Thread (2021)

With some of you guys being confined to their quarters, i still hope this isn’t a bad time to start a new health and fitness thread.

Despite my doc telling me that i shouldn’t run too much because of my slightly dissimilar leg lengths, i’ve decided that doing less cardio i’m off even worse. Squeezing in a decent bike ride after work feels like way more hassle. Besides i’m just going to trust myself on this, because since i’ve picked up barefoot running, it feels just incredibly good and i’ve had no joint pain whatsoever (that doesn’t go for my calves though, yikes). Still a good way off from last year’s form but that’s gonna improve quickly, just need to go careful on the feet not to hurt myself in the beginning.

Besides that, thanks to the tips from my doc I’ve picked up a daily routine of stretching and a few body core strength exercises that have completely cured my lower back issues (had developed a bit of a lordosis). I’ve even startet hitting the hangboard (which i absolutely despise) twice a week to get my finger strength back (haven’t trained since they locked up the boulder gym in October).

Overall i think I haven’t felt so at ease with myself since i was a kid. University filled up a huge part of my headspace. Doing sports feels more like fun again and less like something that I have to push myself to do.


So getting back in the saddle so to speak. Other than the PEs…I didn’t suffer too much during this past year + of COVID limitations. I’m about 10 lbs heavier…but with the doc clearing me to stop taking the blood thinners I’m easing back into this. Did a couple 20 mile bike rides this week and a couple 4 mile runs… Generally feeling OK if a bit low on overall energy.

Very gently easing into the running. A few days ago did the 4 miles with just 13:30 pace and tonight my wife came with me and it came down to 12:30 miles. Mostly just trying to stay injury free. I’m at about 215 lbs and I’d rather just shuffle run with low impact until around 200 lbs.

Also getting some pool time in…though my pool isn’t ideal…too short but whatever. I had a lime on an Intex Hydro Flow pool swim current generator a few months ago…but the deal fell through. I could really use one…


My wife wouldn’t move here without a pool. So we got one. Two good strokes and it’s time to flip-turn; spend all my time turning. So I got a tether. You can really wear yourself out with it but I really like the sensation of swimming freely. Water rushing over you when your are “in the zone”, stroke is efficient, etc.

Bought some ropes (the long heavy kind) instead. Deceptive workout those things.

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Yeah - I have a tether. My only real gripe with it is that you don’t get the water moving past your head, which actually makes the small dip of an air pocket that you breathe in when you turn your head. As a result, I find myself having to exaggerate that movement which feels kind of awkward. This is the gizmo I covet…but nobody has any in stock and I don’t think Intex continued them. There are alternatives…but they are really expensive…

Dropped about 25 lbs during lockdown doing yard work, then the social unrest hit. Being on standby in the office living off a steady diet of takeout food, and no exercise I ended up a net 45lbs heavier than I was pre-covid. Additionally I had been swimming about 1.25 miles 4 days a week pre-covid, that went out the window (I haven’t been in the water since October of 2019) with everything.

Finally decided this week at work, to get back to things. We have a reasonably nice gym if you’re into crossfit, which I am not. With two replacement hips, running is out as well. We do however FINALLY have heavy bags (side note: who in their right mind thinks we can run a police academy without having punching bags?! It took 15 YEARS to get them) in the gym.

So elliptical for warmup, small kettle bells for strength and range of motion work, and working my way back up in rounds on the bag for cardio. Currently at 3 rounds of shadow boxing, 3 rounds on the double end bag for timing, and 4 rounds on the heavy bag. Hopefully I can get back to 12’s on the bags, and I need to start adding some ab work in their too.

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I got this one a few years ago. It’s up to $95 now. Not fancy but works. Dude makes them, or used to, about 90 minutes from me.


I’ve never done a triathlon, but does that dude in the video look like he is lifting his head way too high out of the water? Good luck with the swimming simulator Chris. I would swim at our community pool, but don’t want to scare anyone into thinking that polar bears have migrated to South Carolina.


From what I was taught (a million years ago), yeah, you should keep your head/neck inline with your torso; in short, you use a lot of energy (and drag) trying to keep it above water. Done correctly I suppose your head, if you’re moving at any pace, will create a little ‘pocket’ for you to breathe.

That dude may not be moving fast enough (the flow isn’t fast enough with that gizmo) perhaps. I get bored quickly and always did ‘sprints’ or something like interval training in the pool; hard as I could for as long as I could, then repeat several times. All in a pool which makes things much easier.

Our complex is finally getting a pool but I fear it may not be long enough for the crawl stroke. Butterfly may be the ticket. Which I stink at - people have wanted to rescue me when I tried it :slight_smile:


Butterfly stroke looks like it will attract sharks. :rofl:

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Woot…! On a whim I was searching around yesterday…all the usual suspects (CraigsList, Ebay, Amazon) and no joy. But then I used my wife’s Facebook (ugh) to search Facebook Marketplace and there was a Hydro Flow just 20 miles south of Charlotte. Listed for $1000, I offered $800 and we settled on $900. I honestly don’t think the thing was ever used…it is in perfect condition.

Very simple mounting process…drill a couple holes in the concrete, put in some concrete anchors with some wingnuts on them…hook up the transformer and everything works perfectly! I did not have a chance to swim in it this evening…today was a bike day, but tomorrow morning I’ll give it a whirl. This is great (hopefully) because my pool is really too short for accurate lap times.

Did my usual ~20 mile ride today and felt as good as I’ve felt in a long time on it. 1+40 time, which is 5 minutes faster than a couple of days ago, and a full 15 minutes faster than two weeks ago. The 1200’ of elevation gain is still a killer…resulting in a lot of big chain ring to little chain ring switching. Would be great to find a safe route that had only a couple hundred feet, but whatever…


Had a nice afternoon ride today. Some showers came through and cooled things off just slightly…so I hit it before the muggy aftershock hit… :rofl: Pretty happy with a 1+36 ride…that is four minutes faster than a couple of days ago, and a full 21 minutes or so faster than a few weeks ago.

I had a little bike problem about 3/4 of the way through…I was pedaling and went to change from the little ring to the big ring and something jammed up. I got a momentary jungle of chain up near the front derailleur, backed off the pedal for a second and it fixed itself. But now I can’t get the derailleur to move the chain from the big ring to the small ring…so I had to manually put the chain on it. Not a big deal since much of my ride is climbing so I kept it in the small ring and just glided down the hills instead of pedaling…

Starting to slim down again. Was 230 lbs. at the height of COVID last year…now down to around 205 lbs…which is when I start to get my face back as my cheeks disappear… Keto has been working for me. My rides were pretty lackluster during the keto transition period where you just are totally sapped for energy. Now that I’m in ketosis my body switched to burning fat and I feel much better. I’ll switch back to a sensible diet at around 190 lbs. I think… A man can only take so much bacon, cheese, and eggs…ugh…

Healthy keto dinner tonight…low carb tortilla, some Don Peppinos sauce, mozzarella, pepperoni, some sliced up jalapeno and tomatoes. Good stuff…!


Dayum! Gettin’ after it! Lookin’ good Chris!


Swam about a mile this afternoon using the Hydro Flow - getting the hang of it now. I think for long distance, endurance swimming I have to stick with the one breathe per stroke technique for now. And I’m a creature of habit and can only seem to breathe reliably turning my head to the left. I guess good swimmers can go to both sides. I’ll be curious about the accuracy of the pacing and distance estimation of the Hydro Flow versus a true open water swim.

Kai has soccer practice tonight…which is good since that will give me an hour of running around the track too. This weekend I might try a self-made Olympic distance triathlon to see where I’m at with “bricking” all the workouts together.


Did a quick 50k asphalt grind on my MTB on Sunday evening. Last few months we’re a bit bumpy with getting 2 teeth pulled, then i had a mild cold and mid june i got my first covid shot which also impacted my ability to train. My grit is coming back now though, and for bonus points, my bouldering gym is back in business. Heading there today for the first time in > 6 months. Not sure how much my hangboard training has tided me over, probably going to be pretty brutal.


So Kai had soccer practice last night…so I was able to get on the track. Started with 2 miles, walked 1.5, then another mile. A roughly 10 minute/mile pace surprised me because I’ve mostly been running on gravel and have been doing 12 minute/mile. Do you guys notice a big change in times running on gravel vs. asphalt? It was really hot…I wasn’t pushing hard…but felt good throughout. My goal is not speed…just sustainable pace that minimizes injury potential. I actually felt pretty good. Bumped up a few pounds on my mini-vacation to Florida…went up to 209 pounds…am now down to 205 again and on Keto again. Goal is still 185 and a normal diet.


Heat has a huge influence on my pace.


I decided to do an Olympic distance DIY triathlon today… 1500 meter swim, 40K bike (24.9 miles), and 10K run (6.2 miles)… Proooooobably should have done it in the morning when it wasn’t 90 degrees…:hot_face: Was very happy-ish with the results though.

Swim - 22 minutes (which is wrong…it should have been maybe 38…so my HydroFlow lies!)
Bike - 1+50
Run - 1+28

I sweated out about everything I have though…


Time for a beer!

Two crappy Corona Premieres (low carb)…


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I’ll need to start measuring how many times I lift the bottle… That’s exercise right?

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