from PR to ER

Wednesday, July 27th started out great and ended in the crapper. Worked out, got a PR. Afternoon turned beautiful. Dug a sandcastle with my kids in the sun. It was an afternoon low tide and I went pipoboarding. Everything was awesome until I fell and broke my left radius (forearm).


400 meter run (50 meter turnaround)
Leg mobility
Shoulder mobility
50 jumping Jacks
10 push ups
10 x 45 x deadlift, clean pull, hang power snatch, ohs

Front squat
5×135, 3 x 170, 1 x 185, 7 x 1 x 195 @ 120 seconds

200 meter run active recovery

5 x 185 (PR)

Shoulder Press and Bent Over Row
3 x 5 at 90, 95, 100

Broken Left Forearm

Many spectacular smooth and in control rides. And then one slip… bam. I knew instantly that I’d snapped one of the bones in my forearm. Calmly… we gathered up our things and went to Seaside, the ER. They took good care of me. My dad and mom came down; a little musical cars followed and then, my dad drove me back to Portland.

Surgery today, Thursday, at 5:00 pm, with Dr. Bueller.

food journal 034

food tuesday july 26th 2011

coffee w/ half and half

weigh-in: 197.0 lbs

about 9:00 am
bites of leftover sausage and egg from kids breakfast

about 11:15 am
2 egg omelete fried in butter w/ fat slice of monterrey jack cheese
1 large grapefruit

about 1:30 pm
medium sized bowl of ground beef with tomato, spinach, and basil

selzter water

iced coffee w/ half half

a few raspberries, blueberries, and slices of banana, a sip of Yael’s beer, and maybe one bite of the kids’ dinner (see below for description)

surfing session (before and after: lemon ginger green tea… awesome pre and post cold water surfing)

… then

10:00 pm (post surfing)
white rice, pinto beans, large serving of chicken enchillada casserole (4 corn tortillas, chicken, musrooms, green chili sauce, monterrey jack, mexican farmer’s crumble, and cheddar cheeses, el pato sauce)

glass of tequilla with ice

piece of candy from Bruce’s: “dark chocolate peanut butter bar”

bowl of vanilla ice cream with boysenberry syrup (yes it has HFCS but I love it)

seltzer water

awesome tuesday Oswald gloaming session

“If the doors of perception were cleansed, everything would appear to man as it is, infinite.” — Aldous Huxley

surfing 12

Everything happens only once. It is so important to remember that even within a routine, even within a pattern of praxis, what you are doing right now is inherently unique and unrepeatable. We never return to a past moment. So: appreciation. For the now; for this happening that cannot exactly recur; for events the likes of which you may never again see.

Tuesday evening I arranged a hall pass for myself, and took off BEFORE kid bedtime to go hit the rising tide, and the lower evening winds, at Shorties. What a beautiful amazing session. I hiked all the way up the sand to the NW end of the beach. There were 4 foot waves W/NW; 10+ second period; warmish, 60+ degree water; glassy surface; light N winds mostly blocked by Cape Falcon on the north end. Blue sky. Amazing colors, light, and sounds. Not too many people.

It was surfing the way surfing should be. Calm. Gorgeous. Smooth. Many fun rides.

I would have kept going but I lacked the stamina. My hamstrings, calves, and quads started cramping up on both sides, it was actually quite painful. Giving in to my weakness, I left about 30 minutes earlier than planned. I was probably in the water about 90 minutes, from about 7:00 to about 8:30 pm. There were only 3 or 4 surfers who stayed in the water longer, until sundown at about 8:55 pm. It was glorious to return to the beach and not be in a rush. Sitting on a rock, watching the cliffs glow with the reflected orange of sunset, I enjoyed my thermos of lemon ginger green tea.

Then, in the gloaming and growing dark, I returned to a quiet house and a large, late dinner.

food journal 033

Food Journal for Monday, July 25th

Weigh-in 198 lbs

Coffee w/ half
A little heartburn and stomach sour this am
2 eggs fried in bacon grease
1 large banana
Coffee w/ half

Seltzer water
Coffee w/ half

Late Lunch:
One pulled pork taco: corn tortilla toasted in bacon grease, kale, pulled pork (a few ounces), Valentina sauce.
A small number of leftover French fries

Walk on the beach

4:30-6:30 pm: shot of vodka, club soda and lemon x 2

For dinner: white rice with home made ground beef and tomato sauce with fresh basil and spinach

Nighttime binge while reading:
Whiskey and club soda
Vanilla and Mint Chocolate chip ice cream with home made “hot fudge” <– quantity: large; this was serious binge behavior!

food journal 27-32

This entry covers Tuesday July 19th to Sunday, July 24th. Most of this week constituted a real vacation for me. After the visit from Danny, Anya, and family, during which we were (I was) only pretty bad, we had Ben, Deb, and family in town… and I was really bad. Vacation style eating, more of the same from my previous entry.

Usually, the day started slow. There were a few, but not a lot of big breakfasts and lunches… nor was there a lot of daytime snacking. Usually my days’ eating was focused on big dinners followed by dessert, and then nighttime binging. Several of them gave me nighttime belly aches that continued into the morning. One of them (I believe it was Friday, July 23rd, day 30 of the food journal) constituted a total gluten binge, involving wheat products at meals, snacks, and a shit-ton of pizza for dinner, followed by cookies and graham crackers into the night. I continued to eat things I normally wouldn’t through the weekend.

By Sunday July 24th (day 32), I woke up with a second day in a row of serious heartburn. The scale (which “must be” broken) claimed that I was around 199.4 lbs. Holy crap! And I felt terrible and bloated. I felt like I was at the bottom of a hole… emotionally… training wise… and physiologically. I almost didn’t eat any breakfast (coffee and a single scrambled egg). Yet I knew the day would not be friendly to good eating. I was going to have early lunch at a cafeteria in the “retirement village” where my grandmother lives, in Astoria, OR. Having checked out the menu on a previous visit, I knew what to expect. My expectations were not disappointed. “Fried” chicken, powdered mashed potatoes (a product I actually like), boiled carrots, olive drab steamed broccoli. At least I skipped the gravy and “rice pudding.” I ate a massive plate… too much. After returning to Arch Cape, I drank seltzer water and worked out. I started to feel better. (But there are other emotional issues there!) It was a beautiful afternoon. I decided to have a post workout beer… which may have been the healthiest food choice I made all day! I also ate leftover pulled pork (from dinner on Wednesday, I think). At that point, we realized that we didn’t really have proper groceries to make a healthy dinner. We decided, against normal policy at our place, to take our small children “out” to dinner. We ended up at a fish and chip house. I decided not to spend $22 on healthy grilled fish and steamed veggies. For half the price, I had deep fried battered cod and french fries. And heck, I even dipped it in cheap tartar sauce and “homemade” cocktail sauce (manifestly tomato ketchup with horseradish). I did not overeat. And I waited for the bloating, the discomfort, the heartburn, to return. It did not. I stayed away from the kitchen, then, until I was reading in the evening, well after kid bedtime. I finished off the day with a little bit of Rye, a bit of apple, a bit of dried papaya, dried mango, and a few chocolate chips. Compared with the previous week, this was incredibly moderate. I stopped all food intake around 10:30 pm.

For the next few days I know, or rather I feel, that I am going to be back on track. I will probably take a complete break from alcohol and sugars and will certainly return to a gluten free eating pattern. I may even go back to light intermittent fasting. Merely because eating that way makes me feel better, emotionally and physically. But I also know, from documenting my (ch)eating over the past 32 days in this journal, not to expect that things will sort themselves out on my own.

During this period I had some seriously, seriously embarrassing food days. Days that reminded me that my problem with food is really this two-edged issue of psychological compulsiveness and addiction. If I pour my energy into “healthy” eating, I can eat like a champion. But I rightly feel (and get reminded by more sane friends like Brian and Andrew) that this mode is ridiculous and leads to unhealthy “eating disorder” type behaviors. On the other hand, it seems as though I am incapable of eating like a “normal” person. In the absence of self-imposed fascistic controls on my diet, I become the cookie monster.

I don’t have the answer to this issue at the moment. I’d like to be a “food normal” … but really, I’m actually not. So I’ll be thinking about how to address this issue… compulsive behavior around food and diet… in the near future.

sunday deads, squats, cleans, etc.

Sunday afternoon, in the driveway at “Arch Cape Strength and Conditioning,” I completed the following workout. It made me feel fat and sluggish and weak, but I did it. Almost a week had elapsed since my last barbell workout. Too much time. This workout had slightly more total volume than the last, but other than that, doesn’t have much to recommend it.

Warm Up
1000 meter run
Shoulder mobility
20 jumping jacks
10 push ups
10 x 45 hang power snatch
10 x 45 ohs
10 x 45 back squat
10 x 45 deadlift

5 x 135
3 x 205
1 x 225
3 x 5 x 225
These felt totally doable.

Power Clean
1 x 135

Back Squat
5 x 135
3 x 170
1 x 180
3 x 5 x 180
These felt ridiculously hard. Not fun at all. Especially since they are at only 76% of my 1 RM.

Press and BO Row Supersets
3 x 5 @ 85, 90, 95
I am surprised at how great the shoulder presses are feeling lately! And I am loving bent over rows. Shoulder pain in the left has become almost a non issue. On the right, I’m at about 90%, ironically.

FYI: I did about 10 x 80 yards of light jogging between sets of all the above, a form of active recovery. These just kept my heart rate up just a little bit, and provided a sense of rhythm to the workout, preventing me from standing around daydreaming between sets.

1 x 140, x 160, x 170, x 180, f x 185 goddamnit!!!
This short sequence was a bit disappointing. My form is totally screwed up. On the 185 I clarked the bar; I didn’t even get a proper second pull. On all of the reps the bar is probably way too far out in front, away from my body. But at least I cleaned 180 again as I did last Monday.

Hang Power Clean
10 x 135
I threw these in just out of sheer frustration, and to re-emphasize to myself how important it is to pull close to the body and to get those elbows around fast.

Next workout: focusing on the cleans (Tuesday).

surfing, sandcastling, skimboarding

There are lessons one can only learn from surf and sand.

What a glorious week of skimboarding sessions… afternoon low tides Monday through Saturday meant that most days we were out kicking the pipoboards around. Also, great weather, and friends in town, meant lots of kids on the beach, and a heck of a lot of shovel time. Over the four day period of Wednesday through Saturday, Ben and I built three HUGE sandcastles for the kids to play in. Shoveling wet sand, digging moats, etc., we moved a couple of tons of gray basalt sands. This is much more of a workout than you might think. I definitely hardened up my hands a bit more. It was so fun to see the kids playing on these castles, splashing in the moats, screaming in delight as the waves washed them away. Hendrix was repeatedly invoked.

Surfing 10. Wednesday morning July 20th we hit Indian Beach for the super early dawn patrol session. Ben and I left Arch Cape at about 5:00 am, arrived at Indian Beach just about 5:30 am, got suited up, and spent about 80 minutes in the water. The old guys (Mark from Cannon Beach Surf and friends) were also out there. It was a lot of fun. The water was warm, the surface was clean, the swell was 4 feet, the tide was pretty high. I had a couple of good rides. I was back on the Doyle, newly repaired by Sandy at Cannon Beach Surf. Sandy was out there too, showing how it’s done… since 1957, I believe he said, in the parking lot after the session.

An ultimate pipoboarding session. Thursday evening July 21st, Ben and I hit the super deep dark gloaming on the beach at Arch Cape for an evening mid-tide pipoboarding session that was out of this world. Unforgettable, yet, indescribable, so probably doomed to oblivion. The light. The perfect flat sand. The utterly still air. The “warm” summer waters.

Surfing 11. Friday morning July 22nd we went back to Indian Beach for another dawn patrol. It was similar to last time, but much junkier, much much junkier. Fewer people in the water. We spent only about 60 minutes and then gave up. Again, I got a couple of good rides in. So I was happy. But it could have been better.

Friday afternoon was serious sandcastling and pipoboarding time.

We planned on another session for Saturday AM but I was SO SO SO wiped out after the week of debauchery and sand play that I opted instead for a sleep-in.

Saturday was another castle day and pipoboarding session. I got video and photos of our last sandcastle, and my dad got some ok video of my fat ass on the pipoboard. I’ll update this post later with some photos and youtube on the fun times.

Days of heaven.

food journal 21-26

This pathetic entry covers almost an entire week in which I didn’t compose new entries. Wednesday, July 13th (21), Thursday, July 14th (22), Friday, July 15th (23), Saturday, July 16th (24), Sunday, July 17th (25), and Monday, July 18th (26).

Days start out pretty well, usually. My morning meals have not been stellar, but they are ok. It’s always first coffee with half and half or milk. Then we usually have breakfast. It’s eggs, sometimes with cheese, and whatever breakfast meat we happen to have on hand, such as bacon or sausage or even smoked salmon. For carbs it’s fruit, or oatmeal, corn tortillas, or even none. On at least one of these days (today, day 26) my breakfast has been ridiculous. It was leftover pork ribs and a large slice of pizza. I kid you not. I give myself: B- grade on breakfasts.

Daytime snacks and lunch: I mostly haven’t been doing ‘snacks’ or ‘lunch’. With some exceptions, like, sitting on the beach after surfing yesterday I had peanuts and corn chips. Or occasionally I will have a tablespoon of almond butter, some fruit, a handful of peanuts, that kind of thing. Lunch is often skipped, or is leftover meats, with a little bit of fruit. I find that lunch tends to interfere with mid-day activity on the beach or in lifting, surfing, etc. Sometimes this means that “lunch” looks like a daytime snack. Grade on lunch and snacks: C+.

Dinner has been the main meal of the day, and usually the healthiest, with the exception of day 25, where we had Pizza. I can’t recall at present (end of day 26) what I ate last Wednesday. That’s not surprising. There has been fish stew and spinach (day 26), pizza, salad and crab (day 25), salmon, carrots, and green beans (day 24), bbq pork ribs, mashed potatoes, and broccoli (day 23); other meals, of which I am less certain of the timing, include ground beef with tomatotes, broccoli, kale, and zucchini (probably day 21). With the exception of Pizza dinner and cheating I have been probably 95% gluten free. Grade on dinner: B+.

Alcohol: “never on a school night” has not been in effect. But then, it’s not a “school night.” Beer, wine, liquor. All has been fair game. During the day, not so much (I have grown very fond of having a beer after surfing, though). Up to kid bed time, I am very restrained and discreet. After dinner, the later I stay up, the more I drink, it seems. Especially when the house is filled with old friends as it was over the weekend of the 15th-17th (days 23-24-25). Grade: F.

Post-dinner binge eating: yes. My sweet tooth is in total effect. Chocolate and butter (i.e. fudge sauce), random candies left lying around by the kids, ice cream, cheddar cheese, almond butter, even Pizza (on nights 25 and 26). Grade: D+

Weigh-in: 192.0. What this tells me is that, pretty obviously, whatever I am doing is not hurting the “bottom” line.

a great monday

A sunny day… the first in several days. I got plenty of exercise and vitamin D!

In the well-timed mid-morning low tide, Ben Walsh and I got a fair amount of pipoboarding. This is not a “workout,” but we did a large number of barefoot sprints on the sand, skimming, twisting. All in all, a great warm-up and “conditioning” session.

After this, I did some lifting.

Moved the bar into position, and then, a quick 10 x 45 hang power snatch. I felt ready to go.

Deadlift and Shrugs

5 x 135 DL plus 5 x 135 shrug

3 x 205 DL plus 5 x 205 shrug

1 x 220 DL plus 5 x 220 shrug

3 x 5 x 220 DL plus 3 x 5 x 220 shrug


5 x 135, 3 x 155, 1 x 175

3 x 5 x 175

Shoulder Press and Bent Over Row (Pendlay) in supersets
each x 3 sets of 5 @ 80, 85, 90


1 x 135, 155, 165, 170, 175, 180

I might have gone further if I I had more time! These felt good. I did do one rep at a higher weight than I successfully lifted on Thursday. And I went from 72% to 97% of my 1 RM. I’ll take it. I’m going to keep working on my clean here at the beach until I can report a PR.

Finally, after that, we went surfing.

Surfing 09

Another session of surfing, again at Short Sand beach. Ben came along on the soft-top. I had the super ugly. There was a good afternoon high tide. There was a little bit of sideshore chop in the newly resuscitated north winds, but the water was warm and the waves, though small, were mostly clean. That didn’t mean we did any fancy surfing, however. It was a pretty tame hour in the water, but a great way to end the day.

There was an additional “strength” element to this surfing adventure. Walsh and family and Baldwin and family… everything went down to Oswald. On the way back out I had JZ on my back in a kid pack, plus a backpack with wetsuit, etc., plus by longboard. I was probably carrying 80 lbs for a 3/4 mile hike up hill!

I was as physically drained after this day’s activities as I can remember being in a long time. I was basically in constant motion, sometimes lifting pretty heavy things, from about 10:00 am until about 4:00 pm.

Sunday mid-day

Surfing 08

Sunday I spent from about 1:30 to 6:00 pm out of the house, in a pretty active state. I went to Short Sand beach (in Smuggler Cove at Oswald West State Park) to surf for about 60 minutes or so from about 2:00 to 3:00 pm. The surfing was ok. Nothing huge, nothing spectacular. I caught the mid-day high tide. The wave I call “the tooth” and the channel by the rocks on the south east end I call “the elevator” were both working. I was in control of my board. Popping up and standing ok. The weather was ok, by which I mean: 60’s, gray, rainy. The water temperature was awesome: maybe 62? I was actually hot in my wetsuit. This was a real surfing day and I finally felt like I was back in the swing of things. Unfortunately, my knowledge of what surfing is like has reached the point where I am pretty conscious of what a weak surfer I really am. Oh well. This is obviously not the summer where I go semi-pro. Ha!

After hiking back up and packing up my car I actually hooked up with my family and friends and we hiked back down through Oswald to the beach and spent a few more afternoon hours there playing with the kids in the sand and surf. It was relaxing and fun. It stopped raining and almost got sunny. That was a blast.