[Rowing Machine] Two Four Eight

You constantly face adversity when you exercise. Adversaries include: feeling like it, not giving your best effort, and exercising itself. Exercising hurts, even with properly stretching and practicing good form. Yet when my rowing machine teaches me figurative exercises in overcoming physical and mental adversities, in a controlled environment where I can stop exercising whenever it becomes too overwhelming, I can use these exercises to break free from old molds that don’t fit me anymore.

  • My Weekly Stats:
  • Wednesday Morning: 50 light rows. Realized I was pushing too hard, so I called down a bit, and it worked out much better. Even stretched a bit.
  • Wednesday Bonus: 50 decent rows. Not the heaviest pace but better than before. The new chair at work was too stiff, tweaking my back; swapped.
  • Wednesday Evening: 50 good rows. My arms felt sore, in that good way, after I wrapped up. I didn’t go furiously on it, so my legs weren’t spent.
  • Thursday Morning: 50 solid rows. Lighter pace than recent rows, which overall, was more fluid and didn’t wear me out. Ready to take on the day!
  • Thursday Bonus: 50 good rows. Some stupid stuff makes for good rowing energy. Just was careful not to overdo it. Gotta keep my back in check.
  • Thursday Evening: 50 good rows. Lighter pace. Noticed that around 30 I was starting to get tired, so maybe I’m accidentally going rough still.
  • Friday: 50 rows. What a chaotic morning! Getting grounded with rowing certainly is a way to keep things organized. Good, light pace.
  • Saturday: 50 light rows earlier. Wasn’t feeling well. Got some coffee, water, food, and got back to it for a decent set. Good warm-up!
  • Sunday: 50 good rows. Was feeling ill yesterday and unmotivated this morning. Pushed through it! My shoulders needed stretching.
  • Monday Morning: 50 powerful rows. Expended maybe a little too much effort on this set? Had a good pace, with good form, though I’m tired now.
  • Monday Evening: 50 light rows. Today was difficult. At least there is certainty in one’s rowing repetitions. Your efforts don’t lie to you.
  • Tuesday Morning: 50 light rows. Stopped my 5min sets after leaving my old gym. I should start again at home… now I’m ready to go, at least!
  • Tuesday Bonus: time 5min. 156 good rows. Knees hurt early on, back hurt later on, and paused incidentally at time. Feels good rowing longer.
  • Tuesday Evening: 50 decent rows. My right ankle is acting up right now, or I would have rowed longer. I must have bad form with my right foot.
  • Vitamins: 13 of 14
  • Weight: 248.5 pounds*
  • Last Week’s Goals:
    1. Routines: acceptable enough
    2. Read: just some Art of War
    3. Stretches: better now
  • This Week’s Goals:
    1. Just feeling better
  • From Good to Better
    • Life is all about the little decisions we make. There were two big sets of cookies at a work party on Friday. Before March, I would have grabbed one or two to snack on. Though I got sugar elsewhere, I still didn’t grab any, so that counts for something.
    • I took a good two hours to deep clean my kitchen. It’s much better organized now, cleaner, and has taken me closer to enabling me to figure out how to integrate my rice cooker, blender, and slow cooker into my cooking routines.
    • As I wrote about above, I’m going to start including 5 minute rowing sets into my routine, probably in the evenings. Maybe 3 or 4 nights a week at first? I only used to do that because it was a nice challenge to go at maximum resistance.
  • Sober Living
    • It all relates. The stress from work, life, and people can be too overwhelming. Then there’s a solution you know works. It disengages you completely from the stress and the reality that’s causing it. You just want that internal sadness to stop.
    • When I get in those mindsets, I go for random long drives. As I say, “I get lost to find myself.” This drive took me out to a poor part of town. As long as I stay on the up and up, I should be fine. The beer and wine section didn’t register for me.
    • * I also eat a lot when I get into these depressive mindsets where I can easily eat thousands of calories, healthy food doesn’t interest me, so it’s disgusting how nearly self destructive that can be, yet that’s better than indulging in other things, I guess.
  • Confronting Cortisol Circumstances
    • When you realize something isn’t working well, you’ve got to address it as soon as possible. Those conversations are by far the hardest in the heat of the moment, yet open up to better opportunities after the smoke settles.
    • Ignoring problems seems easier. Maybe by avoiding the inevitable, maybe the wound will heal in a way where it won’t hurt anymore? I used to think that way for the longest time. Now I rip off those bandages and expose the wounds to let them heal.
    • It’s not much better today than it was on Monday, but in a way, at least there isn’t the sense of hiding anything or living in a state of blissful ignorance. It’s all action from here on out, rather than avoidance, or something else.
  • Disengaging from Stress
    • I’ve been playing 30 minute stints of videogames on Steam and posting brief reviews on Twitter. Videogames are potent escapist activities. Forgetting about this reality’s stresses and going into a world where it’s all easier almost seems perverted.
    • I yelled at someone and was generally pissed off on Tuesday morning. That’s a problem. I was pissed off a few weeks ago too. That was also a problem. That was why I started trying to disengage more intentionally. Guess it’s not working. It’s a start.
    • I’ll go to bed after this post. I find it’s easier to write in the morning because I don’t have the weight of the day hanging on me. Everything’s still fresh, I have coffee, and working toward my goals feels more urgent, perhaps…
  • Photo
    • Colossus in Old Man Logan’s plastic tray. Two ideas here: it’s incongruent and shows some growth. Colossus doesn’t fit, almost like he’s grown out of the old mold. At least, that’s my “thinking too much about it” kinda thing I do sometimes…
    • The background is on my workbench again. It’s a nice companion piece with last week’s photo and fits in with the theme of taking these rowing photos “out and about” rather than in my light box or a more formal environment.
    • This is my 26th rowing post. It’s been a half a year since I took my health seriously again. I’ve made some good progress and hopefully in another half year, I’ll have more sustainable progress.
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.