Peeking out and getting warmer

Well the season is changing once more to the tune of above 20F on a daily basis making things thaw, muddier and warmer. Well, if you’re like me where anything above 20F is warm then you’ll have plenty to be happy about that is except for the ice building up wherever there was snow.

Snow melt is cool, when it’s white. In the city it’s basically as dark and dirty, and festooned with garbage and road dirt. Who knows what else is in there, but enough to state that it is going away. I can safely say that wearing a windbreaker over a 1st layer of wool to workout in 25F weather is not unheard of since you’re shivering until you begin to move then you want that shell off also.

How in the world can people function wearing so much on their bodies while working out outside and feeling ok with 3+ layers on them is beyond my comfort zone, but hey they’re getting it done just the same. I heat up fairly fast once I start moving without really sweating under 15min of work. I have to really put out a lot of Jules to make me sweat plenty and at times the work at hand has me perspiring so much so that I can resemble a steam pipe at times. Funny sight to see steam rising off my body like i was doused with water and then unzip my shell and it’s like the steam pipe sprung a little leak.

With snot shots (farmer john’s) coming on a little more frequent when expending a lot of effort I find myself making sure the wind is always in my favor and not against me when I do them. I’ve seen may runners have a bad day when performing a snot shot (farmer john = holding down one nostril while blowing out snot from the opposite side and repeating the process on the other one) when it blows onto their forearm while performing such act is hilarious. I can state that I have not had that happen ever! Ha! Right, it’s happened to the most experienced of us all and it’s embarrassing but funny as hell also.

Enough about the snot shots. Let’s get to the sunnier days for training. Our training days had become a – ‘get out of the car, run to meeting area, get orientation, start workout, finish workout, take pics, and get the hell back into cars to warmup and head home’ affairs. There were days when it was so cold just waiting to start that jumping up and down became a constant warm up start of our warmup itself. Ever felt so cold that air would not want to come out of your mouth because it liked being warm inside you? Yeah, that happened on multiple occasions. Yet, here we are happy to state that we have made it to March!

March in the Midwest means different things to us than the rest of the country. Why? Well, we can expect at least more below freezing days regardless of what calendar day it is. We can expect more snow, and dreary days to come. It is what it is in the Midwest. Our winters can last longer than the calendar spring states. To which we just put on our ‘don’t give a F!’ Face, and attitude to continue doing what we do best. Live, Love, and Laugh at the changing climate that the season(s) throw at us to make us formidable individuals to face adversity with less angst.

Keeping things on an even keel makes things manageable and your stress levels low. Although we were pretty fed up with the snow here since we had no where to put it. All of the shoveling done within one week I had a stack of snow I shoveled to 1m/3Ft height and no place to turn safely out of my driveway on occasion. Helping others dig out really didn’t phase me due to my fitness, but man you’re going to really consider wearing the right clothes just to shovel since once again it must be stated that Cotton is NOT good for chores involving outdoors activities that require movement aside from just walking to the car.

Hydration on days like those mentioned above really is a must. Have you ever heard of anyone sweating while swimming? You’re not going to, but you do sweat and you need to hydrate. Electrolytes are a key, and you do need to make sure you get a balanced intake. Where can you get such items? You can Google electrolyte drinks, and you should choose a drink that should not have a LOT of SUGAR! Do yourself a favor and do your research since there is an unlimited amount of information on said drinks in the market. Be self sufficient and proficient on said subject matter since your health is at the forefront of your intake of electrolytes and the benefits you can have due to your intake.

I’ll leave you with this – make the time to get out in the sun. It’s coming out earlier and staying out longer. Walk, run, fast or slow. Get out and get your Vitamin D! Increase your potency. Be a healthier version of your previous self. Workout outdoors, enjoy nature even if it’s in an urban parkway. Find time to commune with Nature without distractions.

Be a better you, and when you can share that experience do so to enrich others with the benefits of a healthier lifestyle. It’s free to choose and be healthy. Lifestyles take time. One step, one min, hour, day, month, year at a time.

See you out there,

Gio

Icy, wintry, cold WOD with the RuFF crew in the early morning.

Take this cold weather…

Waking up every morning to a dark, cloudy (mostly), and cold day is what makes working out a little challenging yet very fulfilling. Why you ask? Why take it outside when you can rightly stay indoors and follow along to a live feed/zoom fitness class in the comfort of your own home?

Well, it is very simple. The people you surround with is the defining element in the chemistry of getting uncomfortable with like minded individuals to see these workouts through. It has become a truth to all of them involved that fitness is not a part time, or even less than a portion of their lives, but a staple to keep not just stress away but illness.

Leading by example to sweat, laugh, swear (a lot) these individuals I’ll call out right here. For the sake of not going in order of tenure with us there is :

Breath right strip Eleni, gear lugging Mike, Humble Matt, in the wings Courtney, Tall drink Al, the ever leading and not catchable Selene. My SgtMaj (USMC Ret) Weber that never has a stop nor idle in him, the Ironman (it’s too dark) Brian, the newly found youth Ron, the endurance go getter Liz, our EmpanadUs crew of Kevin, and Leslie (bro and sis) that are stellar athletes, it’s too cold Jae, our spark-plug athlete Jessi (i miss CA weather).

They are worth getting up and leading such a crew as this to make their lives, and those they interact with from immediate family, to co-workers to show that there is an alternative to just a regular life of just getting by but making a difference. A major difference in their health, and those they Love and care for.

Become a light in darkness so that others may follow and make a change for the better. There is nothing more rewarding than making people healthy, and happy.

The video links below shows a group of individuals tackling tough R.E.D. Friday workout. Getting into the fun of things while huffing, puffing, encouraging each other during the process.

Video link one – Thanksgiving WOD

Video link two – 12 Days of Christmas RuFF style

Get up, go out regardless of the weather and get it done! Be in the moment for you will get warm and the benefits outweigh the temps. Trust the process, for you will see very good returns.

Be safe, be strong, be smart and be willing!

See you out there!

Merry Christmas!

Mi A Gi

Keep moving, mental health is your reward

The continuing order to endure enclosed spaces for most people means a lot of time spent being either complacent in their life’s choices, or deliberate on staying focused and active. Which are you?

Well, for starters I like being active. I love to workout, mostly outdoors with my ruck, kettlebell, sandbag, hilly area or just a trail. Either way, I can make it work also at home since exercise is not exclusive to either out of doors or indoors in the context of moving. Complexity is not useful, simplicity is the norm.

Using basic movement patterns of push/pull, press, extension, flexion, and rotation you can basically move in any pattern that your body can get into without much effort, but the magic in that pudding is the amount of times you perform it, and frequency with a good serving of either resistance, time or speed.

Look around your environment right now. Where are you seated? Let’s begin with a simple chair, either folding, fixed four legged model with or without padding. Pry it up against a wall and you can use it for squats if you’re learning to sit and stand again for rehab or prehab. Squats once more if you are trying box squats with a weight to a prescribed depth. How about upper body work by performing dips, on one chair while legs are elevated on the other, or push ups with feet atop of seat while hands are on floor?

Core work? Sure, lets try this: Sit ups with elevated feet on the seat portion of the chair, plank holds in same manner, or glute work like butt biters- where your butt raises from the floor while feet (heels) remain on seat portion of chair for multiple reps. Bridges (one legged) with heels in the same place (atop of seat) go for multiple reps/sets. You see that it’s just imagination that is the limiter.

Food items – no, not raw food like chicken or frozen fish. I’m talking about canned foods, and there are plenty of sizes and weights to use for exercises. Cans in a backpack/rucksack wrapped in a towel so it doesn’t jostle around in the pack while you exercise with it. You can run with the pack, squat it, swing it, plank with it and press it. Imagination once again is your limiter. Indoors/Outdoors are your playground.

Just because you’re asked to stay home does not mean you should be sedentary. You need to keep moving, because mental health is not a given. You’ll need to make the effort to sweat a little and get the benefits you so desire.

Happy Easter All!!

Butt biters, dips, hill bear crawls, ground to overhead, and team squats!