And We Ran Week 1 Day 2 (Emma)

Matt: Day 2 Exercise At Home

Weight: 199 lbs

I decided to do something a little different today. Instead of doing one of the workouts we have, I decided to arms and abs. Emma’s mom gave us some weights so I did bicep and tricep curls. Since it was raining this morning, Emma couldn’t run. She convinced me to do abs-centric yoga. It sucked. Don’t get me wrong, it’ll probably be effective but it was awful. I have no abs. But as Emma reminded me that is in fact the very reason I should be doing ab workouts in the first place. 

Emma: Day 2 Run (Rained out) 
I don’t know why Matt hates ab work outs so much! This one was called “V Cut”. I like it because it is effective without doing crunches. I also did the bicep/tricep stuff with Matt. I’m not so crazy about those. They bore me! Hopefully the rain won’t keep me inside tomorrow!

And We Ran Week 1 Day 2 (Matt) 

Matt: Day 2 Run

5 minute warm-up, alternate running one minute and walking for 90 seconds, 5 minute cool down 

Weight: 196 lbs

Today was my first early run. It was pretty dark and…I may have tripped a time or two. The sidewalks around my neighborhood are kind of uneven. My toe caught the edge of a sidewalk slab. Slightly. But I kept my balance and kept running.

Overall, running was easier today. Greta did incredibly well again. She pulled a little but otherwise she was a trooper. Once she learns to stay where we want her, she’ll make the perfect running buddy.

Emma: Day 2 Exercise At Home

I decided to modify my work out a little bit because I decided to take ownership and personalize my workout….OK OK I was DYING! So I did 2 set of “Korra” and did an abs routine for my 3rd set. “Korra” was chalk full of lunges and squats. It didn’t help that we played dodgeball the night before. Overall successful but painful! I am referring to the workout. Dodgeball was just all around painful!

And We Ran Week 1 Day 1 (Emma)

Emma: Day 1 Run

5 minute warm-up, alternate running one minute and walking for 90 seconds, 5 minute cool down 

Let it be known: today I ran. At 5:45am. In the dark. I had one of those light up snap bracelets and everything! I felt legit!

In all seriousness, the first day of running was not nearly as brutal as I feared. The single minutes of running went by very quickly. I had my trusty dog, Greta, to protect me from the creepers in the dark. This was quite the confidence boost for me to not be absolutely dying. I can do this!

Matt: Day 1 Exercise At Home

Weight: 199.5 lbs

First let me say, I am INCREDIBLY proud of Emma for going through with this running thing. I have tried countless times to get her to do any running. She hates it. I can’t overstate that. Hates it. So, good on her for going for it!

So anyway, back to my workout. It was so much harder than running yesterday. So much. The workout I did was called “Ready Player One. It kicked my ass. It involved burpees, punches, climbers, pushups, and high knees. Burpees are awful. Everything else would have been manageable but burpees suck. Then again, I guess that’s kind of the point. And I pushed through it so I know I can do it next time. It can only get easier, right? Let’s hope so.

And We Ran Week 1 Day 1 (Matt)

Matt: Day 1 Run

5 minute warm-up, alternate running one minute and walking for 90 seconds, 5 minute cool down 

Weight: 197.5 lbs

After far too long, Emma have I have decided to get back to exercising. So six days a week we’ll be trading off working out and running with the C25k app.

Today was my first day with the app. Having done this two years ago, I mistakenly assumed it would be a breeze. Not really. Don’t get me wrong, it wasn’t necessarily hard. It just wasn’t as easy as I’d hoped. But just like the last time I tried this, I know it’ll get easier.

I’m ashamed to admit a minute of running was almost too much at first. Just when I found myself wondering if I’d be able to last… the app told me a minute was already up. After that the minute of running felt a whole lot easier.

Last time I ran we didn’t have a dog. But I’m happy to say that Greta was great. I think she really enjoyed it. If anything, she enjoyed it too much. She kept running ahead of me and pulling. We’ll have to work on that over the next eight weeks.

All in all, I’m excited to be doing this again especially since Emma and I are in it together. Ideally, we’ll keep each other motivated. It’ll be great to see what changes in eight weeks!

Emma: Day 1 Exercise At Home

Weight: N/Ah

I begrudgingly decided that it was time to do something about my ever increasing weight since I stopped breastfeeding. I am NOT an exercise person by any means. Matt will tell you that he has tried to convince me to workout with him many times over the years. I was resistant because, let’s be honest, I didn’t want to put the time and effort into it. I was within a normal healthy weight for my age and height, why complicate things?  But lack of time/motivation for activity, stress, and poor diet have taken its toll on my body. I went from one of my lowest weights to, now, my highest. I am hoping with support from Matt, a new routine, and a little healthier diet, I can become a leaner, more zen version of myself.

We decided to alternate running and working out at home because the mornings worked out best for us and one has to stay home to be with the sleeping babe (lucky duck). We printed off several workouts we handpicked to be full body workouts that would keep us interested week to week. The C25K was a great program for Matt to get into running. As much as I hate working out, I absolutely LOATHE running! My dad has been a pretty serious runner in the past and it just never appealed to me. The time commitment, the nasty, sweaty clothes, the expensive shoes, the blisters, black toe nails, and pure exhaustion! Who would put themselves through that?!  But I decided to try, just so MAYBE I can jog short distances for a workout when I want to.

This morning, I picked “The Roaster” for my at-home work out. It is mostly jumping jacks with a few pushups, squats, planks, and mountain climbers thrown in. My legs were like jelly by the end of my 3 sets! Then I chose a back strengthening yoga routine to upkeep my touchy lower back. I have had issues with it on and off since I was 13 so I don’t want to new work out routine to literally throw it off balance. Lastly, I did 100 (5 sets of 20) crunches on the exercise ball.

It feels good to be making a step forward! Even though I am tired from getting up early, I already feel like I have more energy and am in a more positive mood. I knew I wanted to do this for the physical health benefits, but I think the overall benefits will be just what I need as well!



What Would You Do?

Oops… I keep forgetting about my blogging commitment. I don’t really have much to talk about. I guess I’ll tell a quick story about something weird that happened today.

I went to a cafe with some coworkers so we could play a tabletop card game over lunch. I know what you’re thinking and the answer is yes, we’re really cool. Anyway, halfway through our game, the girl at the table behind us tapped me on the shoulder. She asked me if I would watch her laptop. I agreed thinking it would only be a short thing. We were sitting next to the bathrooms after all.

But she didn’t go to the bathroom. She kept walking.

Seeing that she was walking toward the counter, I thought she was probably going to order something.

But she didn’t go to the counter. She kept walking.

Once she walked past the counter, I thought she was going to get some water.

But she didn’t go to the water. She kept walking. Right out the door.

At this point, my friends and I were stunned. Where was she going? Is this a set up? Are we on “What Would You Do?” with John Quiñones?

After a few minutes she came back into the store with big bag on her shoulder. She proceeded to leisurely walk to the counter and order something then wait at the counter until it was done. Upon receiving her coffee, she came back to her seat and sat down like she hadn’t just asked a group of strangers to watch her $1200 MacBook.

No “thank you.” No “screw you.” No acknowledgement whatsoever. I’m not sure if she was dumb or overly trusting or just incredibly entitled. Whatever it was she was definitely rude.

A Pop Cultural Education

As kids, we’re at the mercy of our parents. We eat what they decide we should eat. We wear what they decide we should wear. We experience the pop culture they decide we should experience. That’s how I missed out on some seemingly huge trends until I sought them out as an adult. Allow me to explain.

Being a boy, the bulk of my pop cultural education fell primarily to my dad. His likes became my likes because I wanted to be like him. For instance, my dad loved the Muppet Show. That’s why I’m a Muppet fan to this day. He loves Indiana Jones and Back to the Future. I love them too.

But it might be more telling to talk about the things my dad didn’t like. Two big pop culture touchstones come to mind. Brace yourself because these may shock you. My dad hates the Beatles.

I know. I know. Take a minute to calm down. Okay. Now keep reading.

Whenever a Beatles sing would come on the radio, he would change the station. When I asked him why he’d say that The Who was better. I’d always accepted that answer as fact because I had no reason not to believe him. In my sophomore year of high school I went through a classic rock phase and got a best of The Who CD for Christmas. Everything my dad had ever said about them was correct. I loved every song. It wasn’t until I was a freshman in college that gave a single thought to listening to the Beatles. I borrowed a friend’s Beatles 1 CD. After that, I was hooked. I realized that comparing The Who to the Beatles was like comparing pizza to chimichangas: they’re both awesome depending on which you’re in the mood for.

The second touchstone I missed out on just may get my nerd card revoked. Until very recently, I’ve only seen the original Star Wars trilogy once. I don’t have as clear an explanation for this one. All I can say is that my dad didn’t watch it when I was younger and I didn’t seek it out as I got older. Now the new movie is coming out so I thought I should watch them. I definitely see what all the hype was about! They’re really great. So much better than the prequels which I’ve seen numerous times because my parents had the movie channels.

Realizing how my dad’s tastes affected mine is pretty amazing. The different music and movies and TV that we experienced together informed who I am and the way I’ll pass things on to my kids. Sure, there were some gaps and some momentary lapses in judgement like our contemporary Christian music phase. But at least he didn’t get me into country. *shudder*

Donald Trump Scares the Hell Out of Me

Politics has never been my thing. I know that it has a profound effect on many aspects of my life but I’ve never been able to bring myself to get into it. Generally, my only opinion on politics is that politicians only care about winning for their party’s interests rather than representing their constituents. However, I have recently and rapidly formed an opinion on politics because of one man:

Donald Trump.

The man is a racist, xenophobic jingoist. He’s a spoiled child in the body of an oversunned 60-year-old. He can’t take criticism or any kind of a challenge. He has the vocabulary of a 3rd grader. And he scares the hell out of me. Well, not so much him as the fact that he’s so popular. I don’t understand it. His supporters say things like, “He’s a Washington outsider.” and “We need a businessman not a politician.” The problem with both of those statements lies in the fact that we need someone who knows something about foreign policy and diplomacy. Trump knows nothing about that.  I honestly believe if he were to be elected, our country wouldn’t last a year. And yet he remains insanely popular.

I think the most baffling part of Trump’s popularity is everything he’s gotten away with saying or doing. One such incident occurred a few months ago when Trump said he didn’t think that John McCain was a war hero because he “prefers his heroes not captured.” Think what you want about McCain but there’s no denying that he’s a hero. He was hung by his arms for so long during the Viet Nam war that his shoulders were permanently damaged. Beyond that, Trump is implying, for the sake of petty political squabbling, that POWs aren’t heroes. And somehow, his rightwing supporters let him skate on that instead of eviscerating him for having the audacity to belittle the sacrifices made by our armed forces.

Another idiotic claim he’s gotten away with is saying he’ll take 24-hours to explore any issue and know more than anyone on the subject. If I know anything about politics, it’s that politicians should have some knowledge of the situations they could face BEFORE they are elected into office. 24 hours could be too late. But that’s giving him the benefit of assuming that statement is even remotely true. It’s not. Much like everything else about Trump, it’s gross hyperbole.

And let’s not forget his campaign slogan: Make America Great Again. Let’s think about that for a second. Why does Trump think that America isn’t great? What does he think will change that? Actions speak louder than words and Trump’s actions have shown exactly how he thinks we can make America great for rich white guys like him. His first and only plan is to deport all illegal immigrants and build a giant wall along the Mexican border. And what was his justification for that? Illegal immigrants are bad people. Actually the specific term he used was “rapists.” Pretty telling if you ask me. Honestly, I think Trump’s slogan could easily be turned around on him and I hope that it is.

Here’s how I’d want it to play out. In a debate, someone (who is an actual politician) would say, “I like your slogan but I don’t like the sentiment you bring to it. You imply that we should make America great by getting rid of non-whites. I think we should make America great again by setting aside our petty partisan squabbling and grandstanding, reaching across the aisle, and doing what’s best for the American people, no matter their race, creed, sexual orientation or socioeconomic status.” Cue raucous applause that doesn’t end until Trump hangs his head in shame, walks off the stage and quits politics forever.

God, if it were only that easy.