Superwife - Camo belt - D

My wife of 8 years and mother of our three kids. She started TKD after the birth of Odie, our third child.

Princess - Camo Belt - D

Our seven-year-old daughter. She was originally supposed to be a spectator to Cowboy, but jumped in and has proven to have an incredible talent for the martial arts.

Cowboy - Camo Belt - D

Our six-year-old son. He is small for his age, so starting him in TKD is what got us into this mess. He is very close to our Chief Instructor, and his spirit is twice as big as he is.


Our youngest son, born in April of 2006. By the time he is old enough to start, we should all be Black Belts.

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Whining's Done

Whine whine whine. Bitch bitch bitch. Poor me poor me.

Ok, that's done.

31 days until Vegas. Time to get back on the treadmill.


Monday, January 22, 2007

Complete Collapse

I'm tired. I'm too busy. I worked out at TKD tonight. I have a meeting. It's cold and I rode my motorcycle today.

Excuses. All of which, if properly translated, equate to "I'm unmotivated and lazy."

These excuses led to, in the last ten days, a complete and utter collapse of my UBWT challenge. I have not lifted a finger--and in the most critical time of the last six months.

As it is now, for me to even come close to finishing on time I need to do something like 160 pushups and situps a day, and run 3.3 miles per day for the next two weeks. Ain't gonna happen.
And then, to top it all off, there was Mesa. Not only did I lose it in the last three weeks of the challenge--I lost it in the week prior to Nationals "dress rehearsal" in Mesa, AZ this past weekend. Even with that--I felt pretty comfortable going in.

What a disaster.

All the standard stuff aside of dragging 15 bags, three kids a wife and a mother-in-law to the tournament. Cowboy got his Tiny Tiger game on and got his trophy. Princess even pulled hers off, winning 3rd in forms and 1st in her first sparring tournament, despite getting punched full-force in the nose.

Then SW and I went.

To begin with, Alan and I were pretty nervous because we were the only adults with a half-belt in the convention center, and our ring went from us at Camo-R's to 1B-R. We felt a little better when watching their forms, though. For the ranks they were, they were atrocious. One guy finished his backwards, one guy forgot it halfway through. By the time they got to us, we were both feeling pretty good about our chances at placing.

Alan went, did his as good as I've seen him, and then I went, doing as good as I ever have. He got his scores--9.6, 9.6, 9.7. I got the same exact thing. We didn't even come in the top five. We were pretty pissed. I felt like we were given lower scores from either being lower ranked or doing a lower form. On top of that, we looked even more stupid because everyone there is in leadership club (every adult we saw all day, incidentally) and wearing black gear with a gold stripe on their belt. We look like real big tiny tigers.

Sparring didn't go much better. We've done one punching drill since since we began. I focused primarily on kicks. All the guy (a 1B-R) had to do was wait for me to get into arm's reach and he scored every time, with his back to the judges. Our punches tied, but since he had two judges on his side, every point he got was 2-1 in his favor. On top of that, the contact was a LOT heavier than I was led to believe, pretty much full-force kicks and punches. SW's ring wasn't any better. She was eliminated early, too, although her fight was much better than mine. The girl she was fighting against fired off two illegal kicks to the back and never got a warning. The girl then went against another girl in our class, and on the third kick to the back finally got DQ'd, opening it up for my classmate to take first--the only trophy any of us got. Compared to the last tournament, when every single person in my class won something, it left a bad taste in my mouth.

All in all, an extremely frustrating and demoralizing experience.

I don't mind losing at all. I do mind getting treated unfairly, which is what I firmly believe happened this weekend.

I'm debating whether or not to enter Nationals or just go and watch Princess take first again, even though no points are awarded to her since we don't do leadership club. If what I experienced this weekend is any indication of what to expect over the next two years I think my competing days are done for now.


PUSHUP: -1348
SITUPS: -1348
MILES: -27.1

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Thursday, January 11, 2007

Going the Distance

Class on Tuesday turned out to be a bust, because (again) all we did was drills. I did manage to pop Alan in the side of the head (totally accidentally) with a round kick during one of the drills when the instructor told me that I needed to be kicking higher. He mentioned that, starting tonight, that we would be in full tournament prep mode--so full sparring and focusing on SA#3 and weapons, if we decide to do them. I'm pretty sure that I'm going to hold off on doing SJB in competition for the time being.

I was a little worried, during the class, because my heart rate had jumped so high due to dehydration. When I got on the scale that night it read 201.4, but then I drank a 1/2 gallon of crystal light to bring things back into the norm. I've run every day this week, and motivation is pretty high.

Class tonight. Mesa in nine days.

26 days to go.


PUSHUP: -572
SITUPS: -572
MILES: -12.2


Tuesday, January 09, 2007

Final Month of UWBT

I am so tired.

With less than a month to go (28 days to be exact) on the Ultimate White Belt Challenge it has become crunch time. I'm catching up on my running, but my pushups and situps are suffering pretty badly right now. With limited time remaining, I've broken down the spreadsheet to keep a running total of how much of each I have to do each day. Right now I've managed to get the run down to 1.8 miles per day, but the pushups and situps are still close to 100 per day. I really just need one big day to catch up on each like I did back in November.

My record miles in a week is 23.7, which I did last month. I'm at 17.8 today, with four days to go. When you couple that with the 1000 or so calories I'm trying to keep myself limited to you can have some pretty drastic (both postive and negative) effects. After running (for the third time) last night, for a total of 10 (new record) in the day, I got on the scale hoping that the weight I had gained from last week had dropped back down below 210. My jaw dropped when the readout finally came up:


I am less than four pounds from my goal at Nationals, albeit I'm only that low when dehydrated after working out. And Nationals is still a month and a half away.

The negative effect, obviously, is fatigue from overtraining. Usually by this time of the week, after I burn all the stored calories I eat over the weekend, my energy drops like a rock. My metabolism slows to a standstill, too, and by Thursday I usually gain a pound back or two. But if I can be 205, hydrated, on Friday I will be one happy camper.


PUSHUP: -711
SITUPS: -711
MILES: -12.3



It seems that the intensity gets jacked up higher every class. Not so much with the physical part, since SW and I are ahead of the game fitness-wise, but with the content.

We went to class on Saturday because we're getting ready for Mesa. Since we won't have CJ1 down in time, we all picked which form to do--in most cases SA3. The school is doing a "competition class" on Saturdays now, so we learn CJ1 in our normal class, and SA3 in the competition class.

In the past five weeks since joining Black Belt Club we have only sparred once. There's only one other guy in the class (Alan), so we usually get paired up for everything. When we sparred that one time we were restrcited to kicks to the body only, and I beat him easily 5-0. He's pretty competitive, and was pissed that I had beaten him. Since then, he's told me several times that he's been practicing, with the only thought being to beat me in class.

When we have adult classes, the kids usually hang out in the lobby--unsupervised. To counter this SW and I bring in our portable DVD player for our kids to watch, and that normally keeps them out of trouble. On Saturday, there were more kids than normal due to the upcoming tournament. Both instructors were teaching, and the school owner was in his office, behind closed doors, with a customer. We were working on Bong Mahng Ee, which I have a pretty good handle on, when I saw Princess making her way to the office to knock on the door. I bowed out to see what the problem was.

Apparently there was some kid that I had never seen before playing with the DVD and not letting anyone watch it. I went over and tapped the kid on the shoulder, telling him not to touch the player and to share. He didn't even look up at me.

"I can touch whatever I want," he muttered. I was stunned on so many levels. One, I was an adult. Two, I was in uniform and higher ranking than he. And three, it was my DVD player for my kids.

"Excuse me--that is my machine for my kids. Do not touch it and let them watch. If you want to watch, too, then look over their shoulders." He didn't move. "Now." He rolled his eyes and got up, going over to his father, which I was amazed to find out was a few feet away and not paying any attention to his own kid.

When I went back into class I was completely frazzled. The moves I had been doing a few minutes earlier with ease were gone, and I looked like I had never been there before. A few minutes later, the instructor told us to go get suited up. When I went back out into the lobby, the kid was at it again so I took the DVD player and closed it, placing it into my bag. Now I was even more pissed, since my own kids couldn't watch a movie I had brought specifically for them. On top of that, I was the last one back on the mat, tying my stuff on as I went.

The first pairing was SW and one of the other girls. SW had beaten her easily, also, the last time we sparred. The girl also outweighs SW by about 20 pounds and is about six inches taller. The instructor briefed us that we were now going full-up, with kicks and punches allowed wherever we wanted within the rules. The match started and the girl attacked SW with full-force kicks. It almost looked like she was trying to hurt her. SW lost, and Alan and I were called up next, with me still pissed off at some seven-year-old that I didn't even know. I figured I would maybe try a kick to the head, but nothing flashy since I didn't feel that I have enough control to not hit him full force.

The instructor threw his hand up to start the match. I took a half step forward, and the next thing I knew I was seeing stars from a heel to the chin. My mouthpiece filled with blood. The instructor signaled three points. Apparently he was airborne when he connected. I didn't notice.

We started again and I managed to get a couple of kicks off, and Alan jumped, turned, and threw a heel into my stomach. Two points. Match over.

Mind you, again, we are half-camo-belts and this is the second sparring match I've been in since I was 17. To the best of my knowledge, it's Alan's second sparring match ever.

I was compeltely incensed when I left class. So was SW. When we started to talk about it, I realized that Alan's son was particularly rough on the kid he sparred against, too, throwing axe kicks and moves we hadn't ever seen before, except on UFC. I fully expected the instructor to say something about control, but he never said a word.

I'm a little torn as to how to handle sparring against him again, which should happen tonight. I'm pretty sure I could get some hurtful kicks off, but I don't want this to escalate to a broken nose for someone, which I could definitely see happening. At least now I know that he has a few more weapons in his repetoir, and will be a lot more defensive.


PUSHUP: -711
SITUPS: -711
MILES: -12.3

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Wednesday, January 03, 2007

There Really is a Santa Claus

Thank God the season is finished.

I'm not sure I could have kept going if this were to continue on for a couple more weeks. We had our first class back last night, Princess's second in the adult class. I feel bad for her, but am proud at the same time, since she is so small in a class full of big people. The instructor is doing a decent job of helpinbg her along, though I don't think she's going to get the same quality of instruction that she was in the K4K class. It's just too much for one instructor to be able to do.

On an extremely positive note--it turns out I left my bag not on the sidewalk in front of the church, but on the sidewalk in front of the school. So the instructors went out and stuck it in the office. It was like having a belated Christmas gift. Putting that belt back on felt better the second time than the first.

Seventeen days until Mesa, my official "warmup" for Vegas. Although we ran 15 miles over the break, I did barely any pushups or situps during the break. My mission in life is to catch up to be on schedule by the end of the month--that means 60 miles or so this month. It's going to be hard, but do-able. I'd like to start working on sprints so that I'm not winded after 3 minutes of sparring.


PUSHUP: -637
SITUPS: -567
MILES: -29.2