Round 2, Day 37 – Plyometric Cardio and DIY

I was cruising the internet last evening looking for DIY stuff for my garage. Now I have a chin up bar out there I was looking for ideas for other home made items and came across this little gem of a dip station and also this video of a similar but even more creative solution.

Either way, they both motivated me to try and build something this weekend if Ihave the time. I will post my results here, of course. If you have any suggestions for other home made items, let me know, I am always open to suggestion.

So last night I was doing the Plyo workout by Shaun T and thinking that although it is better than the P90X version in some ways, I have a hard time getting up to speed with the intensity right away. I actually wish some of the Insanity DVDs were about 10 minutes longer with a more graduated warmup. I seem to have calf issues with the warmup for insanity and when I do it causes the whole workout to be far more difficult because I have to keep resting to stretch my calf. I am also concerned over getting shin splints so I end up being (probably) overly cautious.

The most famous "sports bra" incident. Until now...

I also noticed that Tony hasn’t cornered the market on creepy comments as I heard Shaun T say to one of his participants “You hadn’t ever worn a sports bra before this”, a comment which could be interpreted one of several ways but just seems a little ewww.

On an unrelated note, I found out how to display each post in full on the blog front page rather than just an excerpt of each one. I prefer this to be honest. All I did was to change the <?php the_content(”); ?> from <?php the_excerpt(”); ?>. I used to know this stuff, it’s just all changing so quickly now it’s hard to keep up.

As a final note to get you back on the fitness track, someone sent me this short piece this morning which basically reinforces the notion of eating smaller more frequent meals:

The Dreaded 4:00PM Hungries

Neil Peace, MD, General Practice, 02:17AM Mar 17, 2010

Every one of my overweight patients describes intense hunger (or at least food seeking) at about 4 PM. Why? Mothers blame it on stress – kids come home – time to prepare dinner – and they eat. Executives say it’s the pressure – deadlines looming – and they eat. The builder says they finish work and suddenly hunger – and they eat. Many reasons are given. The 4 PM phenomenon is universal.Is it Ghrelin? This hormone from the stomach correlates with food seeking. Cummings1 showed a rapid rise in Ghrelin between 2 PM and 6 PM. But this 2-6 PM rise in Ghrelin is similar to the 8 AM to 12 noon rise in Ghrelin, before lunch, and yet people do not report the same intensity of food seeking before lunch. Frecka2 concludes that Ghrelin is more a follower than a leader – of eating patterns. The evolutionists say the 4 PM food seeking drive dates from 100,000 years ago. Then, you needed food before the sun goes down (a strong drive at 4 PM enhanced survival).

Ghrelin or not, I know that to ignore the 4 PM “hungries” invites weight loss disaster.

It seems most overweight patients try to “get through from lunch to dinner” without a snack. In my experience, this long gap is followed by over indulgence at dinner and a tendency to keep eating after dinner. “I had a full dinner but I didn’t feel satisfied, and I kept nibbling.”

Research is moving towards the “small and often” eating pattern. I urge patients to eat at about 4 PM. If the snack is ready beforehand, then there’s a chance it will be the correct energy intake. If the snack at 4 PM is a spontaneous purchase, then, in my experience, there is a high risk of excess energy intake.

I think the three-meals-a-day gorging-style of eating is out of date in 2010, but that debate can wait.

It is not easy to convince patients to stop at 4 PM and eat. I wish employers understood this phenomenon and catered to a short break at 4 PM.

Many Family Physicians are employers.

As a Family Physician what do you do for your own 4 PM “hungries”? What does your staff do at this time?

Round 2 Rest Week 1 Ends – Quit the gym, build your own.


I am not claiming to be the best handyman, you won’t see me on the next season of Handyman Superstar Challenge but I was impressed with myself at getting the chin up bar installed in the garage. It is nailed to the rafters and is high enough so that a) my feet can’t touch the ground and b) it is above the garage door when it opens. This also keeps my ego in check and will prevent me from doing workouts in the garage with the door open. Not that I would dream of doing that now… but who knows about the summer. I am also going to build some crossfit boxes that you use to jump up onto in order to increase leg power and in addition, I am thinking of building some dumbell holders that I can then install in the basement to get the dumbells off the floor.

I also quit the gym this weekend. I have put the membership on hold indefinitely so that I can spend the next few months on my DVD based fitness and taking full advantage of the gym I faithfully built in the basement. It will also save us $70 a month which will, I assume, go towards a cloth diaper service and not towards a new exhaust or HID headlights for the Jeep or Tony Horton’s 1 on 1 fitness.

The buildup was pretty simple, I suspended 2×4’s from the ceiling joists using 4 large nails each. I will eventually put a lag bolt through each one but for now they are OK. I had bought a hollow metal bar, 48″ long and drilled a similar sized hole through each 2×4 as you can see. I simply threaded the bar through the holes and as you can see, the last support is a little off in alignment. That was due to the fact that when I drilled the holes, at least one of them was at a slight angle. I am not sure how you would combat this without the use of a drill press but it doesn’t seem to have affected it in any way.

The bar was around $25, the wood I had laying around as spare pieces as I did with the nails. I will have to buy the lag bolts / carriage bolts.

I am around 260lbs right now and the bar I set up in the basement (which I will discuss at a later time) has a very slight bow to it now after some vigorous use. However, that one is across a 36″ door frame. I don’t expect this one will bend at all given the 3 support points.

My plan is not to hang from between the 2x4s since I would bang my head on the central support, but rather to use one hand on the outside of one end support and the other between the two far supports to give my head room to clear the bar.

Days 40-43 Major Malfunction, Long Weekend

So I kind of messed up this week. I did Kenpo on Thursday because I was sure that was the right thing to do. I realized once I checked the schedule that I was supposed to do Yoga on Thursday and Kenpo on Saturday. I actually ended up taking Saturday off (well, I did 45 minutes on the treadmill instead) instead of Sunday and then doing Yoga on Sunday. Then on Monday I built a large TV shelf to sit on top of the fireplace in the living room that would accommodate the tuner, the Satellite box, the DVDRW and both the Wii and the PS3. However, between fixing that up and installing it which took around an hour with the ridiculous amount of cabling involved and the small but significant amount of gardening that I did I managed to miss out my workout all together. So I now find myself on Tuesday without having done my Monday workout which means that I will now have to go without a day off this week.

So here is the plan.

Tuesday: Chest Tri Shoulders
Wednesday: Plyo
Thursday: Back and Biceps
Friday: Yoga
Saturday: Legs and Back
Sunday: Kenpo

This will get me back on track for next week which coincidentally is a rest week which fits perfectly.

So what did I do with my 4 days off? Well, I completely finished revamping the garage so that I actually have room to work and room to park the Jeep again. I built the shelf I just mentioned and installed it however if it works out fine and we like it, I will have to take it down and paint it black so it fits in. I did a good job with it too, routed the edges and everything to make it look professional! I also bought and installed a new stereo head unit for the Jeep, one with a USB port on front so you can use a flash drive for your music instead of CDs. That means I can get an 8GB memory stick and put every song I have ever heard on it! Nicole thinks we need a road trip now so we can listen to all that tuneage!

pioneerp3100I did manage to fix the broken fence on the walkout deck and do some gardening, attempting to rescue our front yard flower bed that I built last year from the grass that has overtaken it. Weird how I still have stupid holes in the actual lawn but the grass grows like crazy everywhere I don’t want it to. I also “fixed” the mirrors in the basement, ever since I installed them I have been meaning to glue them to the wall instead of having them rest on the rail I built for them. I had assumed that if I glued them to the wall they would all be aligned properly and would look perfect. Not the case. In fact, the wall is so messed up that the mirrors are even worse than they were. Oh well, lesson learned that if you want a mirror wall, get a large mirror, don’t try to make one from small mirrors. Actually, it would probably have worked OK if I had stuck the mirrors to a surface I knew was flat and then against the wall. Maybe I will try that if I can get them off the wall now. Stick them to a piece of MDF and then attach that to the wall… hmmm…

So there you have it, a few days of major achievements around the house but not the greatest outcome on the P90X front. Although, even though I missed 2 workouts I added 2 days of cardio. Maybe that will all even out in the long run.