There are two things I hate about Spring, moving the clocks forward and Lent. I have no control over the former but it’s my decision to participate in the latter.
Is daylight savings time even necessary anymore? Was it ever necessary? I’m thinking of moving to Arizona or Guam just so I don’t have to participate in it anymore. Springing forward really messes with my internal clock. It seems like it takes forever for me to get back on track. In reality it’s a couple of weeks before I’m automatically waking up at 5AM again, but that’s about two weeks of morning workouts I potentially miss. I didn’t swim at all last week because I had such a hard time waking up. The pool is only open for lap swimming in the early morning so if I don’t get over there by 5:30 I’m out of luck.
Then there’s Lent. I use Lent as a time to challenge myself, start a new habit, break a bad habit, etc. It’s not a spiritual exercise per se, I don’t make any kind of promise to God or anything, it’s just an event on the calendar that I try to make work for me. This year I gave up sugar. All sugar. No cheating. I’ve posted on here before that I think sugar is addictive, and it’s addictive in a way that makes you jones pretty hard when you go without. My hope is that by the end of Lent I no longer crave the sweet stuff and can go on sugar-free beyond Easter. But let’s be honest. Who’s going to enjoy a big piece of Easter dinner dessert? This guy.
I’m continuing my 30 day workouts. This is where I lay out a workout plan and do my best to stick to it throughout the month. The workouts increase in intensity (volume/weight/speed) throughout the month. At the beginning of the next month I mix up the workouts, add new routines, take out some others, and then begin again at a lower intensity. I believe this is called periodization. Every thirty days you’re ramping up to some tough workouts, but you’re willing to do it because you know that you’ll have time to recover, and it’s during the recovery when all the gains are made. That’s the theory.
Laying out the workouts ahead of time helps keep me focused and less willing to skip a workout. When it’s on the calendar I’m more inclined to do the workout. I really want to check off on that day. However, I do have to be flexible. There are a few evenings where I have some other obligation like work, kids, church, community, or whatever, and I don’t get my workout done. A lot of the time I will make it up, but sometimes you really do just have to skip. For instance, this month I’m squatting three times a week. I have a hard time recovering if I squat on back to back days, so I did simply skip a squat session last week because it just didn’t make sense to make it up.
I also built this box to help with my March workouts. I’m doing box jumps like the crossfitters. This box is very similar to what you can buy on-line, just not as nice. I’m not a carpenter but I cobbled this together with pieces of plywood I had lying around. It’s 20x24x30 inches. That gives you three different heights with which to workout. The plan is this, the first week I see how many jumps I can do in one minute, the second week two minutes, and so on. If that doesn’t get your heart rate up you are in much better shape than I am.
That’s not the only thing I’ve built to help with my workouts. A few years ago I built this rack. Again, I’m not a carpenter and again I put it together with 2x4s I had left from another project. I did have to buy the carriage bolts. On this I can do chin-ups, I can lower those cross braces and bench press in there with my bench, and I use it as my squat rack. When I’m squatting I raise up the cross braces to set the weight on if I get into trouble. I put carriage bolts on the front to set the weight on when I’m doing overhead presses. I’m trying to figure out a way to modify it so I can do dips, but haven’t come up with a good solution yet.
And so with that I spring my blog forward with one more post. Though it’s technically still winter, it’s 70 degrees outside right now, on a Sunday afternoon, which means it would be illegal and sinful for me to stay indoors. As soon as my grilled steak settles and I get this blog posted I’ll be out the door. God bless you and your family this Easter.