Pandemic fueled change

It sure looks as if the US has decided that the pandemic is “over”; I see that as wishful thinking, though the omicron surge has come down quite a bit, and I feel safer doing things. I went to another basketball game with mask, though masks are not required anymore. I’ll stick with them for a while.

By the way, the women lost but they played a decent game against Illinois State, one of the conference’s better teams.

I think there will be another wave to come as this virus mutates quickly and we are so interconnected. We need to get the world vaccinated.

During the pandemic I started to work out at home; I was running at the time but that wound down a bit and a back/piriformis issue bit an end to my regular walking. That has gone on for some time, though, *finally*, I am starting to see some honest improvement. Yes, walking with Barbara (who is so slow) was a bit painful, but teaching is better, and my walk was better, for 10 minutes.

But as far as the body: 2013 vs 2022:

What is hidden: at the time of the top photo, I was running 5K races at less than 8 minutes per mile. Now…even if I were able to run train again…my 2019 5K races were, on my best days, 9:30’sh pace, and over 10 mpm on my worst days.

That is hidden in the photos.

The current definition is probably due to push ups. Now the number of pull ups I can do has regressed a bit (heavier body weight) and my bench press is down by 10 lb or so..but I haven’t had time to fully recover from the shoulder injury as yet. I am on my way back.

Workout notes:

Friday Pull ups: sets of 5 and 10; enough to get to 60. The wide grip felt extra good; it all was ok. I mixed in some of the PT here, and push ups: sets of 25, alternating sissy and feet elevated

Then even more PT..took me to 6:50.

Bench: a bit different as I wanted to practice going up evenly; I focused on my left arm. 10 x 145, 10 x 150, 1 x 189, 6 x 161

rows: usual 3 sets of 10 with each arm (60)

curls: 3 sets of 10

shoulder: lessened it here: 2 sets of 10 x 88 trying for better ROM

Then stretching

Today: warm up

Deadlifts 10 x 134, 10 x 184, 10 x 234

main set: 285: 3, 3, 3, 3, 4 best sets were 3-5 .

Stretching

15 minute walk (14:40 pace); great up to 10-11 minutes.

Finish PT (leisurely pace) and yoga series.

Total: about 2:10 or so…doesn’t seem like it should have been that long, given my workout was 1:10..then again, that is 1 hour of PT and I gave myself rest.

Respite?

Well, what is going right:

COVID is down locally; now about 50 cases per day.

So, tonight, I’ll mask up and go to a men’s basketball game.

The academic year: ok, so far.

Glute: well, it hurt..well, the pain migrated to below the hip, on the side of the leg. BUT I seem to have found stuff that helps. Stay tuned.

Workout notes no cyling for a while.

Friday: pull ups (2 sets of 10 singles, 10, then 6 sets of 5, including wide grip and chins), push ups 25 flat (before pull ups), 30 sissy, 30 feet elevated, 15 deficit.

bench: 3 sets of 5 x 166, single with 184

rows: 3 sets of 10 single arm

curls 3 sets of 10

shoulder: 10 x 99, 10 x 104 (questionable ROM, 10 x 93 (better ROM)

Saturday: deadlifts, rehab and yoga
rehab included fire hydrants, clam shell, banded walks, dead buts, twist crunches, side leg lifts etc and yoga poses including Frog pose. (I keep my upper body higher and on a level with my butt..kind of resting on my elbows.) (source)

Headstand: 1:40 worth (not hard); did some sun salutes, warrior 2-triangle, pyramid, reverse warrior series, trees, and single leg Romanian deads (weightless)

I really felt some release.

Deadlifts: 10 x 134, 10 x 184, 10 x 234, then sets of the 3 minutes
280 x 3, 3, 3, 3, 4 (didn’t want to press my luck with a 5’th rep)

Note: deadlifts were first; rehab and yoga/stretching came later.

Whack a mole with variants

Cases are falling; the indoor mask mandate (which is often not followed here) will go away on Feb. 28; our society is “over covid.”

But COVID is not over us:

And so the careless (and the immuno-compromised) will discover this; some the hard way. The medical profession is already weakened by burned out nurses and doctors…so …and those who want open, unmasked schools, might find that the increasingly understaffed schools don’t have enough healthy staff to stay open.

And so it goes…enjoy the lull (relative lull, anyway) while it lasts.

Me: N-95, KN-95 and KF-94 masks, choosy about things (no being unmasked indoors around strangers) and I’ll withdraw from large gatherings when local cases/infection rates are high.

We are all Florida now.

Workout notes pull ups, push ups, rehab, deadlifts. Glute pain: much reduced but still there.

I started with 25 push ups, 40 single pull ups outside (10 seconds), set of 10, set of 5 wide, 5 chin ups, 30 sissy push ups, inside for 25 more, then 2 sets of chest-tap push ups.

Deads; 10 x 134, 10 x 184, 10 x 234, then 10 x 280 high.

Digging back out.

Yes, we are still paying the price for the December/January wave, but things are much better …there will be less death in the near future.

And I am thinking about going to men’s basketball games again, with KN-95 of course.

Workout notes: I’ve had to cut back on the cycling; I think that I increased intensity and duration too quickly. So, it might be a warm up, rehab, short (30 minute) type of thing. I don’t feel that bad this evening.

And I am getting about a mile of walking every day, just going to and from work a couple of times. It isn’t much but I might deliberately extend this when the snow finally leaves.

Today, it was 16 minutes (5 miles), rehab with banded walks, etc., then 30 more minutes. (10 miles).

Who is wrong?

I think Bill Maher gets some important things right. But he is spectacularly wrong here:

Yes, some are more vulnerable to COVID than others; in fact, I tell my students that I have to take precautions that might not make sense for them.

But…with his take on what President Biden said about the vaccines: the vaccines DID have 90-95 percent efficacy with respect to getting infected..PRE DELTA. New variants came along, and now, the efficacy with respect to infection appears to be 50 percent or so, though efficacy with respect to death is about 95 percent.

Now his swipe at the hypocrisy of leaders and politicians (bipartisan): ok, THAT was well deserved.

Maher also seems to discount morbidity; even if you are young, COVID can cause conditions that can become chronic. This country will need a lot of oxygen tanks in the near future.

Workout notes

some slight shoulder soreness…I wonder…seems to coincide with doing too many “to the floor” push-ups. Glute: tingles still there, though I did feel a pop and some relief last night..and I noticed that when I stretch the back in different ways, the pain is relieved or alternately, reproduced. So there is an interplay with the lower back.

Today: light stretching, deadlifts:

10 x 134, 10 x 184, 10 x 234 (latter was more work than I had anticipated ..but no back pain, at all)

then 3 sets of 5 with 280, new set every 3 minutes, used a belt. These were ok, but were work. I had some in the tank when I finished, but..maybe next week, IF all goes well, seek a 4’th rep. on set 5?

In defense of the anti-vaxxers …

Before you think I’ve lost my mind:

  1. I am vaccinated and boosted..and I wear the best mask I can when around others or indoors.
  2. I am in favor of mask AND vaccine mandates; the reason for the latter will be clear when I finish this post.

Now that being said, what I am I talking about?

Imagine your social pool being, say, highly religious people or people who are deeply skeptical of THE GOVERNMENT.

Then add to that some of the ridiculous stuff that comes from the left. Add to that the changing official CDC advice (yes, I know, the virus changed, we know more, etc.)

Add to that the polarization and just how unpleasant the left can be.

Then add to that: openly advocating for vaccines and/or mitigation measures can mean all but certain ostracization from friends, family and neighbors…when THAT is your world…

Bucking the trend is very difficult, and possibly life changing.

Would I have been able to do it?

And that leads me to mandates: IF the vaccine is required for the job…”well, I am sorry I got the jab but I need the job…”
It gives people social cover to get the shot.

Heavy snow on the way

10-15 inches expected.

Covid is dropping rapidly; still a high rate but the trend is in the right direction:

The last time we saw numbers like these: Hospital, Dec 8. Peoria: early December. Things are getting better.

Workout notes: 5 mile (fake) cycle, some rehab (with bands), 20 mile (fake) afterward.

How: 2.5-2.5-0 warm up, 0-17-3 afterward.

Adios to January 2022

I did not dream that we’d still be masked up, but it is necessary. Oh yes:

Yes, deaths..mostly from the previous surge. But ..at the store today, only one wasn’t wearing a mask. How about that?

Today’s workout:

pull ups (not that bad) 2 sets of 10 singles, 2 sets of 10, 4 sets of 5 including 2 wide, 2 chins

push ups: 30 sissy, 30 feet elevated, 15 deficit, 25 regular

stretches

bench: 10 x 134, 5 x 154, 5 x 154 both easy (butt on the bench this time; hips cramped a bit…need to work on flexibility)

rows: 3 sets of 10 each arm with 60

curls: 3 sets of 10

shoulder: 3 sets of 10 x 99 (so so)

muddling through

I went to a Women’s game today: lots of social distance.

Well, it ended 60-36 and was never close; it was 31-11 at the half and BU shot 21 percent from the field; finding the right mix has been a struggle. The women played hard but were overmatched.

Yes, I do not feel comfortable going to men’s games at this time. I’d like to see cases back down to early December levels; pity we don’t enforce the mask mandate nor do we have a vaccine mandate for fans, the way that the University of Illinois does.

Yes, I sure wish the government or private entities would enforce mitigation measures but they won’t; the depth of public support just isn’t there. So it is just “protect myself”. So, while I am vaccinated and boosted; I limit what I do based on current conditions. I went to football games but sold my Jan 3 Colts vs Raiders tickets as omicron was in full fury by then.

And basketball games went on hiatus; I recently started back with women’s games.

I teach in a N95.

Workout notes: deadlifts, rehab (clam shell, leg lifts, dead bugs, bridges), 1:02:30 (22 fake miles) on the bike; all at medium intensity.

10 x 134, 10 x 184, 10 x 224 warm up

belt: 3, 3, 3, 3, 5 x 275 with belt.

25 Jan: moving onward

The hospitalized numbers have dropped; ICU and ventilator numbers are grim but …well, and to keep it in perspective: 57 percent community vaccination rate.

If you want to get disgusted, you should read the OSF facebook page; lots of “in denial” trolls there. Resisting feeling schadenfreude when one of them ends up on a ventilator is tough.

Workout: 5 fake miles, lots of PT/yoga (30-40 minutes worth), then 20 more fake miles in 59 min. Breakdown: first session was 2.5-2.5-0, second was 2-14-4 (easy, medium, hard)

I had some tingles during the walk to and from..and some honest to goodness muscle soreness.