Downtime, but a little HIIT, too!

I’m beginning to realize the importance of balance in my life and setting aside time for recovery.  I am working on a post that will summarize a book that was recommended by a colleague of mine called The Power of Full Engagement that emphasizes rest and balance along four dimensions- physical, emotional, spiritual, and mental.  The physical part is a no-brainer.  As an athlete (some would say former, but real athletes know ‘once an athlete, always an athlete’), I fully understand and build into my workout program regular rest and recovery periods.  It is not so easy for me, however, to appreciate and apply that same discipline to the other areas of my life.

Which made this last weekend very, very important.  On the surface, three days in the Santa Cruz (CA) Mountains, spent listening to music; playing video games; laughing; drinking; eating; and watching basketball looks like nothing more than childish fun.  Five former teammates with an excuse to act crazy.  Well, aside from the fact that we really didn’t act crazy–the first sign, mind you, that we are getting old–it was actually a good time for us to connect in a way we hadn’t ever before.  As fathers and husbands, and as professionals in careers that have had their ups and downs, we provided for each other a much-needed refuel of energy and drive, of hope and optimism, and of passion and compassion.  With enough quiet time to reflect on things other than sports and women, we were able to give to each other comfort, guidance, and encouragement that only long-time friends can provide.  And I’m thankful to my wife and the wives and significant others of my dear friends for being so supportive of this much-needed MAN-cation. Read more of this post

5 x 5 in 25

When it comes to working out, last week was one of the worst I’ve had in a long, long while.  You see, since 1990, my first year in college, I’ve had this 3-Day Rule.  Simply put, I forbade myself from ever taking more than three days off from working out.  And except for maybe three or four times, I’ve made good on that promise.  No matter what– birthday, illness, holidays, even on my honeymoon as my wife would attest– when and if that fourth day hit, I made sure I did something.  Whether it was going for a quick run, doing some push-ups and sprints in the driveway, or going to the grocery store to buy gallon milk containers to use as makeshift dumbbells, I made sure I got my workout in.

Fast forward–um– a few years and I’m proud to admit that, even though I seldom break that pact with myself, I’m much less restrictive now, forgiving myself for the occasional lapse.  Even then, though, I make sure the workouts that I am able to get in make up for the ones I missed. Read more of this post

6 Workout Tips

In Today’s helping of Men’s Health Tips, they have 6 simple ways to get more out of your workouts.  Check it out!

Simple Push Up(grade)

Every morning (or at least most mornings) I get up and try to immediately do a max number of push-ups and max number of sit-ups.  While doing the push-ups the other day, I stumbled upon an easy upgrade that recruits your core and abdominals more.  Read more of this post