Threading the needle: where is the line between a university adapting to the times and ceasing to be a university?

Workout notes are the end.

So, what is the purpose of a university? But…”not enough students paying enough tuition” means “no more university.”

Where is the balance?

I am NOT putting down job training programs; we need people to do certain jobs and students need to learn them somewhere.
And a “theory only” education doesn’t prepare someone for the workplace.

But a “technology only” education prepares the graduate to be unemployable as soon as technology changes; I’d guess that a firm grounding on the principles of a subject is more necessary than ever.

And there is something else. I think there is a value in: “hey our program is demanding; not everyone can get through. Are YOU one of those who can?” But that seems to be out of favor; instead it is “come here and we’ll get you through..”

But..again, “no students” means “no college.” But “shallow education” means “eventually our graduates won’t be respected.”

I am sorry that I have a lot of questions but no answers.

Yes, these thoughts are inspired by recent events (this is an idea of what happened). I’d rather not get into specifics as it isn’t my intention to attack someone who is working hard and making good faith, but difficult decisions.

Workout notes
rotator cuff
pull ups: 5 sets of 10 (decent)
bench press: 10 x 135, 2 sets of 3 x 185
inline: 4 x 150
decline: 10 x 170 (good)
clean and press: 7 x 100, 10 x 95
shoulder press (dumbbell) 10 x 45
rows: 3 sets of 10 x 115
goblet squats: 6 x 30, 6 x 50, 6 x 60, 6 x 70 (decent integrity)
back squats: 3 sets of 5 x 95 (not a typo); I do better with a medium stance ..not quite legal depth.
plank (2:30)
easy 2 mile walk outside (felt good)
Bodyweight: 198.7 with sweatpants and heavy shoes (probably about 195 undressed)

Very quickly

My head wasn’t into the running after Nancy’s yoga class …

so 2 on the treadmill in 22:40
3 on the track: first was 8 laps in the outer Riverplex lane (1.09 miles), then the next 16 were done 3 x (1 walk, 2 run) for 15, then the last lap ran: 36:10 total, with 11:45 for the last 8 laps (6 outer, 2 inner)
I got the miles, felt ok afterward, and that was the point.

I am a universe away from the genuine athletes

And yes, today’s workout went ok. Afterward: I weighed 196.7 with sweatpants (about 194 with no clothes) so the weight is moving in the right direction;

pull ups: 5 sets of 10 (left elbow/forearm…probably from front squats (holding the bar))
rotator cuff
incline bench: 10 x 135, 5 x 150
decline bench: 9 x 170 (wasn’t quite comfortable enough to attempt a 10’th rep..but this is 5 lb up)
dumbbell shoulder press: 10 x 50, 10 x 45, 10 x 45
machine rows: with 120: 3 sets of 10
goblet squats: first 6 x 25, then later: 6 x 50, 6 x 70 (to the sill..knees might have bowed in a bit)
clean and press: 6 x 95
back squats: (in between the first and 2’nd goblet squats) 3 sets of 5 x 95. Depth is still lacking.
plank (2:30
head stand This all took 55 minutes.

back home for 20 more minutes: hex bar squats: 6 x 176, 3 x 220 (231 felt too heavy for reps), 6 x 209
Romanian 6 x 145 (better check my back..these should have been more challenging)

Yes, I worked up a sweat. But I am not kidding myself: there is a universe of difference between what I do (and have ever done) and what the genuine athletes do.

Politics: Jerry Jones will beat Paul Krugman

First: I did my morning workout: yoga with Ms. V and then 5 treadmill miles: 5.2 going up every 5 minutes (32:54 at 3) then 42:41 at 4, 52:24 at 5. I didn’t have the pep to go too much under a 10 minute pace toward the end (19:30 for the final 2). I felt good but must have looked terrible getting off of the treadmill.

Now about politics: I see this so often.
1. Liberals lionize someone..either a kid (here or here) or some orange haired “activist.”

2. Conservatives attack: “that kid needs to learn some….(insert “history”, “policy”, “economics”)” while smirking.

3. Someone like Paul Krugman pounces point out that said activist is saying basically true things.

4. Liberals say “see…I told you…listen to the kid…even Krugman (or some other expert) says that they have it basically right…”

And we lose. Why?

Politics often has little to do with facts; conservative attacks are more about “neener neener…those libs are following some dumb kid (or weird activist)” hoping that the undecided say “ I want to ally myself with THEM?” That is, “is THAT the kind of team I want to join?”

The correctness of the ideas has very little to do with it.

And that is where Jerry Jones, the owner of the NFL Cowboys, comes in. The Cowboys are the NFL’s most profitable team and, by objective measures, perhaps the most popular team.

Yes, the do have a distinguished history; at one time, they WERE among the NFL’s elite, year in, year out.

But that was a long time ago. In the 24 seasons since their last Super Bowl win (1996, after the 1995 season):

1. Regular reason: they are 20 games above .500, with a record of 202-182 (about a 9-7 season average).
2. Playoffs: they have appeared 10 times and have…FOUR Wild Card Round wins to show for divisional round wins..which means zero appearances in the NFC championship game.

Reality: the Cowboys are a very average franchise, in terms of on the field success. And yet, they remained viewed as one of the top franchises.
That is “marketing” and Democrats are dreadful at it.

That is, IMHO, why we lose so much.

Finding balance

Ok, when to rest, when to go easy, when to go hard? For an older athlete (or, in my case, “athlete wannabe”) this is a challenge because:

1. The formula changes with age, and the older you get, the more rapidly the formula changes. What worked 5 years ago won’t work now.

2. There is, at least for me, an almost constant background of “soreness/aches and pains” that every older person has. If I only trained when I did not have these, I’d never train at all. That is just how it is.

So last weekend’s dead lift session and 6.6 mile “run” (shuffle) left me with sort of tired legs.

Upper body was good to go though:

Rotator cuff
pull ups: 4 sets of 10 at first, then a scattered 3 sets of 5 later.
bench: 10 x 135, 3 x 185, 3 x 185 (left warm limited me)
incline: 10 x 135 (slow set; almost 10 singles where I did not rack the bar)
decline: 10 x 165 (easy)
clean and press: 9 x 95, 8 x 95 (regular sized 25 plates) superset with
stiff legged dead lift: 2 sets of 6 x 95 (felt good; strict form)
dumbbell shoulder press: 2 sets of 10 x 45 superset with
machine rows: 3 sets of 10 x 115.
The above took 45 minutes

Then 2:30 plank, McKenzie (forgot to do head stand)
Walked home: did super set:

hex bar: 2 sets of 6 with 176
front squats: 3 sets of 6 with 67
sumo dead lift: 6 x 188

This took about 20 minutes and got me out of breath. But I think it was enough to make the tired legs feel better.

Book of Mormon plays in Peoria

We caught the matinee. And yes, this came out in 2011. It is easy to find the commentaries and a synopsis of the plot.

But though it was “over the top” comedy and the vulgarity might repulse some (simulated sex, dysentery jokes, “maggots in my scrotum”, etc.), and their depiction of Mormon theology wasn’t accurate, they did make some true comments about humans, suffering, the relevance of “hope through myth” and how missionaries might (have?) changed things to get people of a different culture to accept..and how sometimes religions bifurcate into different religions.

The profaneness was “with a point.”

And so, I enjoyed the humor, music, acting…pretty much everything about it.

Bradley women retain first place; beat Drake 77-76

First my own sorry workout: a 6 mile ish (1:22 worth) of shuffling a sort of random course.

While out there I saw the Bradley track team training..those guys ..they are just doing something different with their bodies than what I am doing. We were all moving somehow…I was averaging about a 12:30 pace for about 6.65 miles. My legs felt so heavy from yesterday’s workout.

Then came a nice Indian buffet with B and then…

Bradley Women’s basketball hosted Drake. A rough start 10-2 Drake..but Bradley’s defense stepped up and BU went on a 17-1 run to take command..for a while. It was 40-30 at the half.
The second half was intense; Drake cut it to a 3 point game and then took a brief lead late in the 4’th quarter.

BU didn’t panic though; they stayed with team basketball and took a 1 point lead late. Drake came back but BU came back and it was 75-73 late. Drake had a chance to tie but threw away a pass. Then came a huge stop..foul and with 4 seconds to go, a HUGE pair of free throws. Drake hit a last second 3 to cut it to 77-76, but only 0.2 seconds were left. BU inbounded the ball…game!

(yes, you can see me in this last video, top row under the radio announcer top)

I feel so good for the team. First place MVC…

Reaching my old bench press

Though my lifetime best bench press was 310, I did that when I weighed 230 lb. I got 300 at a body weight of 226 back in 1985. But at my current weight (197-198) my best bench press was about 260 or so.


today’s workout: at home: home basement, then home treadmill.
I did 10 sets of deadlifts: (collars: 5.5 lb. each)

6 x 132 hex
6 x 145 Sumo
6 x 145 conventional
1 x 189 conventional
1 x 233 conventional
1 x 255 conventional
1 x 260 conventional
6 x 233 Sumo
6 x 167 Romanian
6 x 176 hex

That was my best deadlift workout in a very long time..and I had no back pain.

Then a 5 mile walk on the treadmill in 1:01:30; 12 minute mile for the last one.

The singles: really didn’t feel that bad. But the deadlifts took about 35-40 minutes to do; I got quite a bit of rest between sets. And that is the value of doing these at home.
As far as the weight being accurate: realistically, probably not, but close enough. What is certain is that I am stronger than when I first started; when I first started, I could NOT get 232 in my home basement set up, or 225 in the gym.

Of course, well, my max sucks but it sucks less than when I first started.

And that is my motto: suck a little less every day.

Final remarks: the last single didn’t feel THAT was challenge but I think I could have done a bit better.
and the 6 x 233 Sumo set was a major improvement from a few days ago when I couldn’t get 1 x 233. Then again, I was nice and warmed up this time.

Bradley women dominate a good Northern Iowa team 61-47

Northern Iowa came in with an 11-5 record which included wins over Iowa (NCAA in 2019), Iowa State and Missouri. They had made the NIT last season.
But Bradley put on the best defensive performance I’ve ever seen from a Bradley team, holding them to 17 first half points and lead 28-17 at the half. It was a low scoring game..with the score 3-2 after 5 minutes of play.

The 3’rd quarter saw BU step it up on offense while maintaining its smothering defense..the lead was 47-26 after 3 quarters. The lead built up to 21 before a mini rally cut the lead to 10 with 1:20 or so to go.
It ended 61-47.

Bradley is getting respect nationally.

Before I forget

I seem to have a bit of trouble with short term memory lately.

So I am writing down what I did, before I forget:

rotator cuff
pull ups: 5 sets of 10; went ok
front squats: 6 x 45, 6 x 65, 6 x 85
bench press: 10 x 135, 3 x 185 (strong..didn’t want to push it), 5 x 175
decline press: 10 x 165 (easy..time to step it up)
shoulder press: dumbbell: 10 x 50, 10 x 45, 10 x 45
shoulder press: barbell: 4 x 95
rows (machine) 3 sets of 10 x 110
goblet squats: 6 x 25, 6 x 75, 6 x 75 (last set: touch the bench)
I played around with back squats; pretty bad (4 x 45, 4 x 95)
plank: 2:30
16 laps outer lane (walk) 29:14 (even pace).

I was more efficient with this workout; I didn’t feel weak which surprised me. I still don’t get why back squats are so hard for me to do at all; front seems easier.