Retrospect: The New Plan

One week ago I created a new plan for myself, called the Never on a School Night plan; it involves seven components. I already posted a mid-week check in on Thursday. Here’s an update after week one.

One aspect of the plan was to treat this first week of the plan as a “cutting week” and to eat fewer calories. According to my food journal, I averaged just over 2700 calories per day during the week, which was at the bottom of the target range of 2700-2900 calories per day. This amount was about 400 calories per day fewer than the week prior, and about 700 calories per day fewer than the week before that, and 1100 calories per day fewer than the week before that! Wow. That’s a serious deficit, relative to my own intake in past weeks. Interestingly, my weight and body fat are pretty much flat from Aug. 2nd to Aug. 30th, in spite of (or because of?) the heavy cycling of calories. I find this fascinating but also a bit hard to interpret in a meaningful or convincing way. So, I continue to track and observe and report. Hopefully I will see some kind of trend emerge soon, either of building lean mass or losing fat or both. I suppose I don’t mind merely gaining strength and speed if everything else remains the same… but can it? I did register a 3.5 pound weight loss for the week, but it’s totally inconclusive what that means. That could be entirely water, for example.

For the record I feel like I look better and feel better than I did four weeks ago. It’s hard to gauge these things.

Everything else in the plan is ON track. Except for two things.

First, I have been having trouble getting good sleep (item #7). I hope this will just work itself out. Watching and waiting. It’s not because I’ve been staying up late or abusing any substances (except coffee… maybe I still drink too much?).

Second, when I did drink, on Friday and Saturday nights, it looks like I went overboard both times, exceeding my limit of 3 drinks. I am not sure that this set me back exactly, but I did notice a couple of disappointing things, namely, that drinking wasn’t as much fun as it should be and that it hurt me more than I wanted it to in the morning.

Finally, I have determined that one modification to the plan is necessary. The plan states that I should hit the gym 5 times per week during regular training cycles (the first five of every six weeks). But my body is now telling me I should probably alternate between 5 and 4 times a week, or stick to 4 times a week, with some play time in there in addition. So, that kind of training regime will not be considered contrary to plan.

All in all, I feel like things went well this week and I look forward to the coming week of training, rest, and working out!


A rest day. Taking Lena to preschool in a few minutes. Myself, working on class prep for tomorrow.


I’m in good shape. Actually, at 40+ years old, I’m now in the best shape of my life. I weigh about 180 lbs, at 13% body fat, and am stronger and faster than I’ve ever been.

I feel good about yesterday’s WOD, indeed, about the last three days in the gym, and before that, about the 5k and three days last week. I’ve done seven workouts and/or events since getting back to CrossFit on Aug 17th, 11 days ago. And I’ve had a bunch of new PRs in that time: Deadlift, Hang Power Clean, Turkish Get up, One Mile Run, Thruster, etc. New PRs in everything, except that pesky 5k. But even that showed such a dramatic improvement over the previous year that, well, I can’t complain.

General Health

Yesterday I mentioned that I had a probable viral sinus infection, with pain and tenderness in my right post-nasal cavity. By last night it had moderated to irritation and inflammation, but also new pain and tenderness had moved to the left. Today, I have no irritation on the right side, but I do have pain and tenderness on the left. Usually, these things progress by moving down into my bronchial tubes. No sign of that right now. Hopefully, within 24 hours, this very mild infection will have passed. Lena shows no sign of trouble, after her first sign of preschool-borne sinus illness, on Friday.

Other than this, my health seems more or less fine.

Diet and Discipline

The general program I laid out in a previous post (Never on a School Night) remains in effect.

Status: (1) food journal is current; (2) I have been keeping the flexible-paleo-Zone, with little or no sugar, very little starch, no processed grains, almost no whole grains, and almost no processed foods; (3) I have been treating this week as a “cutting week,” meaning I have kept my calories lower than usual &mdash, over the past four days it’s been 2500, 3000, 2500, 2400; (4) workouts are on schedule; (5) this is the first week of a five weeks on, one week off training schedule; (6) I have been adhering to the “never on a school night” plan for alcohol; (7) I have tried to get good sleep… the one hitch in my plan; I was wakeful last night, but managed at least to be in bed for 9+ hours (10:30 to 7:00 am).

In other words, all is according to plan.