Sigh…my dream was to be a professional football player, or at least, an athlete. I ran the steps, did the off season conditioning, lifted weights, did sprints and…alas…my best 40 yard dash was a bit under…SIX seconds. (a decent lineman’s time in those days was 5.2-5.3)
The above photo: when I played for Yokota High School in the Fall of 1974; I started on the varsity as a sophomore and that was to be my peak (small school). JV in Texas the next year, and mostly rode the bench my senior year (played just enough to letter).
How rotten of an athlete was I?
- I failed the Air Force Academy’s physical fitness test (too slow on the shuttle run..not enough pull ups, etc. Barely passed West Point’s and Navy’s.
- In the Navy…1982, I could run a sub 40 10K, sub 19 5K. I aced the Navy Flight cross country run (“PT-ed it”), the swim test, did well on pull ups, aced sit ups, passed the broad jump…but…flunked the obstacle course the first time I tried it..even though I practiced. I got it the second time, but still…best shape of my life, and I struggled with a task that required me to show some body control and agility…though the strength and endurance speed was there.
- As a kid: I frequently failed PE tests…I got laughed at because I was one of two guys who could not climb the rope. The gym teachers berated me and ridiculed me.
When it came to athletic ability and kinesthetic intelligence, I was basically “special needs.”
But all of my effort to become an athlete (or at least be a 40th-50’th percentile high school athlete) drew me to running and weightlifting and general fitness stuff.
Fast forward to now.
Yep, that is my back. And the only way I can stay active in lifting and walking is to do a LOT of physical therapy…a LOT of it.
So, every day, prior to working out, I do about 30-35 minutes of back/glute/core/rotator cuff exercises..and if I switch from a lifting session to a walk, I do at least 10-15 minutes more (mostly hamstring stretches and “open book” stretches. I need to. A year ago, even walking 0.5 miles was painful.
And so, today, PT/stretching added 45 minutes to my workout and there are times when I resent that I need to do it. But the other choice: don’t stay active, and that isn’t an option.
Yes, yes, I know, a cancer patient or a heart patient would gladly trade places. That is why I need to remember to be grateful that my chronic condition can be made tolerable with some extra effort (and time) on my part.
So today: again 8:45 to about 11:45, with lifting taking 70 minutes (with farmer’s walks) and walking taking 60; the rest was PT (before, and in the lifting to walking transition and after walking) and time to put equipment up, change shoes, top, etc.
Today: full PT
deadlifts: 10 x 134, 10 x 190, 10 x 225 low handle
10 x 265 4 inch handle.
5 x 300 8 inch handle
Farmer’s walk: 100 feet: 52, 68 lb and 2 sets of 70 feet (to the garage door and back) with 79 lb (44 plate, 2 13.2 plates, (6 kg), 8 lb handle, .5 lb collar).
Then my 4 mile walk; started off as a 5K but felt good enough to make it 4 and get 25 miles for the week. That is what the PT gets me.
Note: this was the final day (March 5) for my old walking shoes. I started to use them on May 29, 2022. I’ve walked 822 miles since then, but given my commuter walks and my “to the stadium and back” walks, I’d say I put about 700 miles on these old shoes.