Thursday, September 30, 2010

VolleyBall 2nd Season Return

I returned to playing volleyball after a summer off and the first thing the coordinator said was, ”You’ve lost weight”, which was a neat little treat. I’m currently holding at about 285.5 or about 2 pounds or so up from the lowest in the blog. Not too bad.

My triumpant return to my second season of adult pick up volleyball… well, most of us were a bit rusty not playing all summer. I noticed my jump had improved, after all I’ve got less weighing me down than before!!! However, it will take time to rebuild accuracy. I’ve always joked that if a ball comes anywhere near me I can promise a hit but the direction afterward is totally a different matter.

I haven’t been blogging as much, I think partly to stressors (both good and bad) like after the car needed a head gasket *THEN* the master cylinder for the brakes went. The landlord finally pretty much finished the roof section over my part of the house last weekend. I’m hoping I can find a time stretch of reasonable uneventfulness to just sort of channel my chi so to speak.

I remember the first time last year I played volleyball, the morning after I seriously had trouble just getting off my futon to get to the bathroom and took serious consideration of giving up playing. This time, I did loose most games and I went home drenched in sweat. But the morning after was just a tiny bit sore, not much at all. Also a new perspetive that although I wasn’t playing my best I have more confidence that my skills will return in short order. I’ve always played for just the enjoyment of playing it anyway.

So what’s next? I’m not really certain. As I hover around the 60 pounds off mark I feel like there is some cross roads coming. I don’t really know what they are yet. I’ve never banned food and I don’t think I will ever start to, but maybe trying to add in some more nutritionally dense choices. I’d like to say the exercise thing will be more structured, but I’m just more of a zen type guy. I got a bit sick and the side effects of the medicine have given me a low grade headache I keep confusing for a low blood sugar hunger. Then again maybe that’s just an excuse.

Like I said, I feel like my “chi” isn’t centered and I’m coming to some crossroads but I’m not sure what’s next. I’ve been off the bicycle for a while now and I can’t pinpoint why… maybe it was just all the stress over fixing the car I can’t say. Maybe V-ball will bring me back. Then again maybe in some ways that drop of weight is slowly changing me into a different person in other ways than on a scale and I have to take some time to adjust to that too.

Some of this is that I don’t want it to be all about the numbers on a scale and know it's not. I think people get lost in the numbers and forget about the question of what’s next.

The Blogfather of Foolsfitness- Alan

Monday, September 20, 2010

Pow Wow Possibles Pouch

Above is a Micmac from the Mother Earth Creations Pow wow.(No, that guy is *NOT* me) But Below is *MY* new "Possibles Pouch"This bag I got at the Pow wow and was made by a traditional tanner with spare shoe leather. She originally designed it as a children’s bag but it is big enough to be an adult’s “Possibles Bag”. The small pouch could carry a small clay pipe and tobacco or some trading beads. I bartered with the lady for it with some of my own beads and a small otter pendant. Next I went to other traders and hunted down some bone for the tassels, and finally to yet another crafts woman who donated some glass beads and put it together for me. I gifted her a buffalo tooth and turkey feather in thanks for her work.

I think this pouch is a good illustration of our journey to become more healthy and fit. There was much searching and many stops along the way. If you look closely the beads do not mirror and match exactly, just as our journeys are not on perfect and on some ruff roads at times. I even had to switch out a couple of beads as I wanted to keep it closer to traditional and made the mistake of getting two resin ones.

I think we each carry sort of an invisible “Possibles Bag” with us in this journey. I like the name of it. Our intentions and desires are in that bag, but only if we have carefully collected them knowing what we really want. That bag can easily be filled with other things. It can only hold so much. Yet having “Possibles” in that pouch, we can’t know exactly what everything is that is in it either. There just might be more in there than we could possibly imagine! It’s only in searching and in intentional purposeful action can we try to pull that “possible” out of the bag.

I’d be great to just reach in and whip out six pack abs but it takes time to look for them, action and intention. I doubt they are in my bag. Yet a couple of years ago if you told me that racing a bicycle on a NASCAR track or seeing the two hundred’s on a scale again were in there I would have laughed at you. Who knew that was in there?! I found them with some hard searching and action.

Open up your “Possibles Pouch” and share with me what you find, and what it is your looking for if you feel comfortable with that. But at least on your own, open that pouch and think about what it is in there that you are looking for and reach for it with action.

At the Foolsfitness gym it’s that crazy Indian guy called “Wandering Mouse” who is the chief fool.- Alan

Monday, September 13, 2010

It’s Gone!

The tragedy! The horror! This travesty against Foolsfitness will not prevail! Since April 1st of last year I’ve had one “official” scale I’ve used at my work. She’s seen me after my 10 mile bike rides, buffet adventures, and we’ve walked this road together hand and scale for over a year… The company decided that it was best to use the best scale at another location with more access to the public. She left me with one parting gift to say farewell… 286.5 or just about half way to my vision of where my weight should be.

The new scale, or rather older scale came this morning to the office to replace her… like she could ever be replaced!!! This scale tried to win me over with a weight of 283. I think it’s pretty close to accurate as I have a digital scale at home. Moreover at the 59 pound off mark! Still, this scale isn’t *MY* scale.

I’m hoping to get a picture of the Pow-Wow up next post but of course wanted to share the above. Also, I attended a multicultural day event locally last weekend. I got to hear Celtic folk music and African drumming. There were booths of lots of local organizations. It’s funny, when I mentioned going to the event to a coworker she asked, “How was the food?” I answered that I didn’t partake. Sure there were food booths from cultures around the world, and now that I think about it they smelled good and might have been neat to try but I had just brought 3 granola bars to have over the day. It wasn’t about the food. Had I wanted to eat something there I guess I could have had if I had chose to, it just really wasn’t on the radar.

I think that’s part of the focus for me now that it isn’t a food question really. Rather it's not a food answer to the questions I'm asking. That’s why in the Foolsfitness pledge I say there are no “good” or “bad” foods. They just are things. Food is neither a friend nor an enemy. Some are denser in calories or nutrition… It’s the Foolsfitness UN-Common Sense, it’s not a diet at all. I don’t even like that word. It's almost a Zen transcendence where food isn't even in the question and thus it falls in order naturally.

There are no trick foods, magic pills, or workout gismos in the Foolsfitness Way. If I want pizza or soda I have some. If I didn’t that would leave me in fear over the food giving it some kind of power it doesn’t have unless I give it to it. Banning foods seems crazy to me. It gives them power when they are just things.

That’s not to say I just eat anything in any volume at all. Part of this journey is learning to understand what is sane. It goes back to the Foolsfitness Pledge of Power of the Plate, awareness, and choices. I don’t live on only cheeseburgers or just salads either. At that Pow-wow I made the choice to eat more high calorie foods in larger portions and enjoyed them... but it was a choice I made and was aware of.

In wanting to be more fit (notice I didn’t even say lose weight) I just am trying to honestly answer “Is this what I’m really hungry for?” Food fixes food problems (you need to eat to survive), but it’s just not a permanent and proper solution to some other things… It's just not the answer to some of the questions I've asked from it.

At Foolsfitness we just had pretzels for dinner!- Alan

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Camping in a Hurricane

What do you during a hurricane? You go camping of course! Foolsfitness enjoyed camping at a Pow-wow over labor day weekend. There was some cool stuff going on. I hadn’t camped for a little over a year and being 50 pounds lighter made a major difference. One simple thing I noticed was just zipping up the sleeping bag. With the exception of the zipper sticking a bit that bag actually fit. I also noticed setting up and breaking down now that I think about it I neither got winded, nor needed major breaks.

It was odd shopping for food. I was actually looking for dense caloric values this time as I wasn’t sure how much energy I’d be spending. The camp site is primitive (no power or water) and I’d be active moving about a lot… although I never danced in the circle.

The weather was an adventure. The first night it was near high 80’s, then the next night the hurricane Earl’s edge neared the area. It was just a bit of wind and a few hours of hard rain. Then the next night the weather system totally shifted and I could see my breath at night.

I tried to come reasonably prepared. There is a tarp over my tent secured to trees and staked in three locations with heavy stakes. I came early to set up before the rain. The tent itself had the small pin stakes and there was a ground tarp underneath, to help keep me dry.

The people next to me had a fire pit going late at night and one suddenly screamed “What is that coming out of the hole!” I’m not sure if the heat of the fire pit helped the little turtles hatch underground but my campsite was under siege by a raiding party of turtles determined to get to the pond below me.
It was strange to hear the little guys scuffing along the edges of the tent looking for a way around to get to the water. At one point the guy at the campsite next to me started collecting them in a bucket so they wouldn’t get stepped on and after showing them to other campers in the morning brought them safely to the water’s edge. He had over 20 of them!

I’ll write more specifically about the pow-wow part in the next post but this experience really got me thinking about how important preparation is in a task. Someone in another site had to borrow a camp hammer from me at one point and I even shared some wood. I prepared for the weather and what I’d need. It took thinking and work but it was important and paid off. Isn’t it like that in working to get fit?

Also I was very moved by those little turtles. They were singularly focused to get to the pond. Even in the bucket they were constantly moving and climbing over each other trying to reach their goal with every ounce of energy they had.

Perhaps that’s a lesson for us in this journey too. One is preparation and knowing the goal. I didn’t forget my camp hammer and had camp fire could be lit with a single match. I just bought a calorie counter book the other day and maybe a food scale is around the corner. The second is the perseverance of a turtle. Just keep on going. Being prepared and knowing your goal without the effort of single minded movement of trying to get to those goals won’t get you to the sweet water’s edge!

Next post some more specific pow-wow stuff from foolsfitness.- Alan