[Rowing Machine] 2018: Week 28 {235.5}

I am not in fitness for the crossfit, gym bro, “get buff” mentality. I’m in it for me, my general health, and increasing writing potential. I don’t want to give in to fatigue while writing, miss “the shot,” or not complete a task because I didn’t have the physical or mental fortitude. I view fitness, then, like sharpening a tool to a point that’s good enough rather than spending hours trying to make it perfect.

My Weekly Stats

Monday 2nd
Row #1: 5 minutes, 30.5 SPM [strokes per minute], 877 meters, 148 rows. I most enjoy rowing after a stimulating mental exercise, usually writing but also research, because, with the mind warmed up, I remember to row more thoroughly. Each stroke is more of an opportunity to strengthen and develop my form or to stretch obscure muscles.
Row #2: 5 minutes, 33 SPM, 983 meters, 157 rows. There were many factors contributing to me feeling fatigued today. Too many excuses to list here. I wanted to skip this set. Instead, I gave it my best effort, and now for sleep, to recover from today’s grind.
Wii Fit: 5 minutes [Triangle, Dancer, Plank exercises]
Stationary Jog: 0 seconds; some running across crosswalks
Bonus: 2 hours of walking, 4-8 hours of walking around the office.
Sleep: 5 hours

Tuesday 3rd
Row #1: 5 minutes, 31.5 SPM, 943 meters, 154 rows. The welt on my leg, from too quickly taking apart something, has subsided in pain and has scabbed over. Nausea decreased. I went to bed early and naturally woke up about 7 hours later, so that helped, but I’ll still take it easier today. Probably. I’ll try, maybe.
Row #2: 5 minutes, 39 SPM, 1139 meters, 177 rows. My under-the-bar rowing technique is starting to pay off, since my biceps are starting to bring in more muscle. It’s also nice that my leg is feeling better from that wicked welt, and though I’m behind on my writing pace, physically everything is back to normal.
Wii Fit: 2 minutes [Triangle]
Stationary Jog: 0 seconds; some running across crosswalks
Bonus: 1 hour of walking, 4-8 hours of walking around the office.
Sleep: 8 hours

Wednesday 4th
Row #1: 4.5 minutes, 43 SPM, 1136 meters, 183 rows. The first 20 seconds were delayed while I checked my seat – it was too wobbly, bolts were good – and then just ripped into it until I couldn’t move anymore. Still tired, but bounced back quickly, and I’m feeling good!
Row #2: 5 minutes, 38 SPM, 1145 meters, 179 rows. Life, for me, is soaking in everything and expelling that which is not useful. Get rid of the item without value, donate or destroy it, but don’t hold onto it. Thoughts are the same. In doing so, you focus your efforts on what you want. For me: health and freedom.
Wii Fit: 2 minutes [Triangle]
Stationary Jog: 0 seconds
Bonus: No additional exercise.
Sleep: 7 hours

Thursday 5th
Row #1: 5 minutes, 32 SPM, 902 meters, 144 rows. rowing after writing helps me focus, whether it’s brainstorming on something I couldn’t write well or an emptied mind that can just focus on where my muscles are, if anything feels sore, if I need to stretch more, or maybe just to relax with the time remaining…
Row #2: 5 minutes, 34.5 SPM, 1052 meters, 172 rows. The magic happens when you lose yourself in something. It’s a dangerous place to live, but to visit? For me, my best rowing sets are the ones where everything is chugging away, even if those aren’t the sets where I’m improving my form or practicing better ways.
Wii Fit: 2 minutes [Triangle]
Stationary Jog: 0 seconds; some running across crosswalks
Bonus: 2 hours of walking, 4-8 hours of walking around the office.
Sleep: 6 hours

Friday 6th
Row #1: 5 minutes, 29 SPM, 836 meters, 132 or 137 rows. When I’m not feeling as ambitious or motivated to do things like write or row, I know I’m tired. I know now that food only helps with a little bit of that. Rest is the bigger component to recoup and reestablish dominance on/over my goals and dreams.
Row #2: 5 minutes, 34 SPM, 1012 meters, 179 rows. What is important to you? Everything else is in the way.
Wii Fit: 0 minutes
Stationary Jog: 0 seconds; some running across crosswalks
Bonus: 2 hours of walking, 4-8 hours of walking around the office.
Sleep: 6 hours

Saturday 7th
Row #1: 4:30 minutes, 33 SPM, 914 meters, 161 rows. Ugh. I’m feeling sick in that sort of way where you can hold out for a few minutes, keep a good pace until some 80 strokes in, lose your breath, pick back up, then lose your momentum again. Rest up and strive for better tomorrow?
Row #2: Skipped
Wii Fit: 0 minutes
Stationary Jog: 0 seconds
Bonus: No additional exercise.
Sleep: 13+ hours

Sunday 8th
Row #1: 5 minutes, 37 SPM, 907 meters, 187 rows. In spite of a knot of nausea and fit of fatigue, I still wanted to put in a good set. Maybe it was for skipping yesterday’s second set, or maybe by pushing through, I could overcome these minor physical pangs preventing progress?
Row #2: 5 minutes, 36.5 SPM, 971 meters, 179 rows. It may be frustrating to hit the wrong note, observe a typo after publishing something, or not quite hit the mark on a meter count. Why are we so obsessed with perfection? Can’t we just let these blemishes accentuate our attempts? Roll through them all. Try again.
Wii Fit: 2 minutes (Triangle)
Stationary Jog: 0 seconds
Bonus: No additional exercise
Sleep: 4 hours

Stats And Stuff

235.5 pounds: up 0.5 pounds from 235.0 pounds

(Note: My goal is 1 gallon of water per day. One liter is 0.26417 gallons.)
Monday: 4.9 liters (1.3 gallons) of water, 1.75 liters of coffee, 1 cup of orange juice
Tuesday: 5.3 liters (1.4 gallons) of water, 1.75 liters of coffee, 1 cup of generic tea
Wednesday: 3.9 liters (1.0 gallons) of water, 2.0 liters of coffee
Thursday: 5.3 liters (1.4 gallons) of water, 1.5 liters of coffee
Friday: 5.3 liters (1.4 gallons) of water, 1.5 liters of coffee
Saturday: 7.6 liters (2.0 gallons) of water, 1.5 liters of coffee
Sunday: 3.8 liters (1.0 gallon) of water, 1.5 liters of coffee

Vitamins14 of 14
(I take: Multivitamin; Calcium, Magnesium, Zinc; Fish Oil; Vitamin C; Vitamin D; and Vitamin E.)

Rowing Machine Maintenance
– Check bolts: yes
– Clean seat: yes
– Lube chain: no

Aspiring Toward Goals

Last Week’s Goals:
Weight  [235.5 pounds]: [failed] I’m on the same weight plateau I’ve been fighting to get off of for the better part of the last year. I’ve made some progress, but when I think I’m losing weight, I find myself returning to terrible old eating habits, not exercising enough to relieve stress. I’m still obese.
Consistency: [neutral] Besides skipping Saturday morning’s set, I think I’ve been doing well enough. I can do more, as about half of my sets show that I’m not quite getting 1000 meters in 5 minutes, but that hasn’t really been a formal goal for me yet, so it’s not like I’m aiming for it…
Health: [neutral] Haven’t been great this week. I’m pulling too much weight around at work, trying to get things done, and not giving myself enough of a rest to keep up the pace. It’s tough work in that regard. Writing about moving furniture has been accidentally cathartic. Some desk jobs are stressful.

This Week’s Goals:
Weight: No weight gain. I ate through a hidden caché of chocolate that I’ve had stowed away. I feel sick, but I’ve been feeling sick anyway, so at least I’m riding a sugar high. Starting now, I’m going to try opting for better quality food when possible and ignoring junk food.
Consistency: I’m not quite ready to commit to 1000 meters on every 5-minute set. Maybe the evening sets? Unless I’m not feeling well? Between that, and trying to at least do one Wii Fit stretch every day, with some exception allowance, I have areas where I can be more fitness consistent.
Health: Diet, exercise, and sleep determine your health. Better diet, more exercise, and increasing the quality of sleep by both forging through my restless days by summarizing them in writing and actually trying to stick to a bedtime. Honestly, I’m over 30 minutes past my bedtime now, but I’m nearly in bed.

Future Fitness Plans
I might try doing push-ups. I can do planks well enough. Maybe I’ll expand out my daily exercise routine to include push-up counts, running in seconds count, along with the Wii Fit and stationary jogs? Actually, I will. I’ve just updated the template. I’ll try to do more machine-independent workouts.

Random Fitness Topics

From Good to Better
There are still many parts of my body that are fat, and I will probably always be unhealthy to some degree, but at least fitness has gifted me with this endurance toward mental and physical stress to where I can, even now, push through utter exhaustion to write some words.

Sober Living
Sobriety, for me, is about trying to escape the uncomfortable present into some kind of comfortable lie. It’s like seeing a photo of something that never happened, or wishing for some far away dream. It’s seductive, and creeps in quite frequently, without much of a respite except putting focus elsewhere.

Confronting Cortisol Circumstances
The more you face your fears, the easier it tends to be, mostly. I still have problems with basic human interaction, and would rather avoid talking to large crowds of people, but it’s only because I don’t really care to improve in this area. If I must, then I will.

Decompressing From Stress
There’s been a lot of talk about float tanks at work. It’s nice and all, but the think about floating is that you have to confront your darkest fears. It’s not that you hate your job, for example, it might be just that you dislike a colleague or the drive…

Wii Fit Highlights
Casually doing stretches during my laundry or when I have a few extra minutes before rowing might be the easiest way to keep it interesting. I might do more stretches, but for now these three – Triangle, Dancer, and Plank – are in my opinion the most effective in broadest possible stretches.

A Nice Outro
Decent week in fitness. I haven’t been able to say no to enough bullshit that’s kept me down. Stress can come up when you don’t feel like doing something and yet there’s some aching little sensation pulling you toward that negativity. I’ve just gotta tell that shit to simmer down.

Quotes: None
Sources: My fitness experiences.
Inspirations: Some fitness group on Twitter started trying to become friendly with me, but ended up pissing me off. Don’t get chummy with me! Sell your shit or go.
Related: Past weekly column entries.
Above: A quick sketch of the 90s ToyBiz Colossus’s barbells next to the real deal.
Below: None. Ran out of time.
Wii Fit Stats: Weight and BMI
Written On: June 30th, July 3rd, 4th, 8th
Last Edited: July 8th
My big goal is writing. My most important goal is writing "The Story." All other goals should work toward that central goal. My proudest moment is the most recent time I overcame some fear, which should have been today. I'm a better zombie than I was yesterday. I'm not better than you and you're not better than me. Let's strive to be better every day.