Here’s a special “Black Friday” edition of the blog, and to those south of the border celebrating Thanksgiving, enjoy your break and stay away from the leftovers after the fifth day, and hopefully you still have some room left on your credit cards after your spending spree tomorrow. To my friends in Canada, have a great, uh, …. last weekend of November? Yeah, I think that will cover it.
1. Oh sweet baby Jeebus, it’s finally warming up again!! As mentioned in a previous post, it’s been pretty freakin cold here lately, so it’s good to be able to walk outside without the IMMINENT FEAR OF DEATH OR LIMB LOSS!!! One of the things I find when it gets that bone-snappingly cold is that joint problems tend to get a lot worse and people with old and new injuries tend to be more stiff and sore than usual, so having a longer warmup is always necessary. Getting that extra two or three minutes on a bike or treadmill will help keep that from being an issue, so when it gets crazy cold, everyone goes through an elongated warmup.
If I have a client with knees that are seriously messed up from osteoarthritis, such as here:
jumping into a resistance training program without a warmup will dramatically increase the pain and difficulty they will have during their workout. By spending a few extra minutes letting the tissues warm up and increasing fluid movement through the knee joint will improve performance and reduce soreness and stiffness during and after the workout.
2. I managed to hang up the Christmas lights last night, didn’t pull any kind of Clark Griswald moment and electrocute myself or cause any kind of bodily harm or destruction of property, but the true test will come tonight when the lights come on ALL BY THEMSELVES, BABY!!! Let’s see if the auto-timer will work properly or whether it will be an epic fail for a trainer to try to do something with electricity other than pushing the START button on the treadmill or cranking the iPod volume up to 12.
3. I recently found out how much of a nerd I am. I got a new copy of Primal Pictures Sports Injuries 2nd edition to add to my library, and when I opened it up, I had to show pretty much everyone who was within arms length. Lindsay even told me I was a dork. But I mean, IT’S SO COOL!!!! I mean it’s got some videos and pictures and MRIs and X-rays and animations and IT’S ALL JUST SO COOL!!!!! Mike Reinhold Tweeted a coupon for 20% off, and he’s now my new Santa Claus, albeit a very short, skinny and un-bearded version. If you want to take advantage of this, check out the Primal Pictures site and enter the coupon code “THX10”. It expires November 30th, so get your act together and check it out. Note, I’m not getting any kickbacks on this, but I think it’s pretty cool, so I’m passing it along to everyone.
4. I also decided to bite the bullet and check out Mike Boyle’s new on-line resource Body By Boyle, and all I have to say is this:
OMFinG, THIS THING ROCKS!!! If you haven’t checked it out yet, seriously, you need to. This program makes a lot of others bow down to the guy who has spent the last 30 years building this industry and forming the thought processes of countless strength and conditioning coaches, personal trainers, health care professionals, and anyone else interested in movement and health. Once I figure out some more of the features on it, I’m going to put my clients through hell, and also make them crazy strong and fit and stuff. I know, I’m a nerd, but deal with it, alright??
I will get paid if you sign up for this one, so definitely do it !! 🙂
5. My goal of being able to hit a 405 deadlift by Christmas took a gynormous leap forward this week as I managed to pull a 405 deadlift from the bottom block of the power cage. The next step will be to get it from the floor. When asked by a friend at work, John Stewart, “Was it an easy pull?” Me: “No, I wanted to die, and had to take two tries at it.”
I wanted to set this goal because I’ve had recurring back problems for a number of years that came to a head in March while at the NSCA conference in Las Vegas. I was in a session for sport performance and had to do a rapid turn and sprint, at which point I felt a sharp pain in my low back, resulting in a bulge in the discs between L4-5 and L5-S1. It took about a month and a half to be able to bend down to the floor without pain, and to even walk normally again, so to be able to get strong enough to pull 405 within 9 months of a major low back injury would be a huge personal victory for myself. This also inspired me to develop the book I’m in the process of writing, and which will hopefully come out in publication sometime early next year. It got me excited to train again after spending a few years in a resistance training funk, and helped me to get healthy again. Sometimes through the biggest tragedies comes the biggest triumphs.
Don’t worry, when it happens, I’ll post a video just to prove it was real.
6. Lindsay’s been driving me nuts this last week. Apparently with the Grey Cup in town and the Saksatchewan Rough Riders playing to win it all, she has decided it’s now time to become a giggling mess of stalker, reminding me that if she has the chance, she’ll propose to Wheaties boy himself, Andy Fantuz, flowing dark hair and all.
Rough Rider fans are absolutely the most insane and voracious fans of any sports team out there. I’ve had friends who were really into soccer and went overseas, wearing the wrong jersey in the wrong city and had people come over to them and try to burn the jersey WHILE THEY WERE WEARING IT, but this is a different type of fan. A type of fan who’s willing to wear a watermelon on their head, drink a case of Pilsner beer, and deck out not only their houses, but their garages, tractors, and friend’s neighbors’ cat in Rider gear.
Word to the wise: never argue with a Roughrider’s fan about their team. And definitely, DEFINITELY never mention “too many men on the field.” It brings about heartache and woe, and feelings of inadequacy to all.
7. Oh crap, I just realized there’s less than a month until Christmas. Oh crap, I just realized there’s 9 months until the wedding. Oh crap, I just realized I turn thirty in less than 10 months.
8. I tried unsuccessfully to grow a Movember moustache this year. While the cause is definitely admirable (most people grow them for a fundraiser for prostate cancer research), the premise leaves much to be desired. After not shaving for a week, I trimmed it down to get something that could pass as presentable. When Lindsay saw it, she said I looked like I should be patrolling the elementary schools in a windowless van and offering left-over Halloween candy to the kiddies, and that she wasn’t going to touch me while I had it, at which point I promptly shaved it off. This hasn’t stopped a bunch of other people from growing a stache, or at least trying to. Most of them look completely horrendous and somewhat silly, but there are a few who can somehow pull it off. Take a good friend of mine, Ed Picard. He can grow a full beard in a day simply by clenching hard, so to grow something is no problem, and he came up with this.
While his esthetics were spot on, and I think he may have used surveyors to accurately get lines that straight, I informed him that he looked like Screech during his adult phase. At this point, most people would laugh it off, make a smart-allecky comment back, take the joke and move on, but not Ed. His response was this.
as well as the statement “I never thought it would come to this, but it looks like I’ll have to start ramping up the intensity, if only to beat Dustin Diamond!” What do you think, people? Does he have a new costume in the making for next Halloween, or does his Mo simply kick Double D’s stache square in the face? Leave a comment below and we’ll figure it out together. It’s more fun that way.