Sunday, December 7, 2008

The 7.5 stuff.

I've just returned from my benchmark setting 1.2km run. The time for me to beat and keep on beating is 7:57 - not a bad time considering that I haven't done any running for a while. I also ended up walking near enough to 400m of it, which while disappointing is certainly less than it could have been. Walking, is not really a problem for me now - during the holiday I was averaging probably 12-15km a day on the streets when I measured it on Google Maps, but probably closer to 20km when all the incidentals (like wandering museums etc) are factored in. Not really great aerobic exercise, but it did a bit for me obviously as by the end of the trip I'd lost 7.5kg, taking me to 169.1 which is below my stated aim for 01 Jan 2009, so that's a damn good start.

As for other things - I'm going to sign up with Gary Wagner again, who helped myself and Sarah greatly with the Original Bootcamp program, but whether it's individual sessions or just the online planning for the moment, I'm yet to decide.

A spanner has been thrown in the works with regards to picking a BJJ school to train with - there's rumblings that I may be moving offices with work, so depending on where I get landed, there may be a completely different set of schools to train with. But hopefully I should know about all that before too long.

In the meantime I'm also planning to see a doctor to get a full checkup to make sure that everything is still in working order, as well as to get things like bodyfat percentages properly tested.

Friday, October 10, 2008

Introducing the contestant

I'm starting this blog to chronicle several things. My training in BJJ and MMA (from scratch), my conditioning training, my diet and the outcomes that I'm getting from all of these. It's also to give me a sense of accountability for the duration of my training.

In the past I had played a lot of sport and done a lot of exercise. In my later years at school I generally had 2-3 training sessions a day for various sports and jobs (rowing, field hockey, boundary umpiring and gym sessions). When I went to uni, this fell off to no training sessions a day, but I made the mistake of keeping on with the same calorie intake. So, in no time I went from someone who was still never going to win Mr Olympia or fit into size M clothing to a slowly self-inflating fat-arse.

This stopped for a time when I got heavily involved with Rugby at university for several years. Then a full time job followed by glandular fever put me back on the bad path. Only in the past year or so with a lot of training with the Original Boot Camp program in Melbourne did I get back to anywhere near where I had been. Even then, old habits proved hard to kick and following a move in address and a change in the regular trainers at that group my wife (who had put me onto it in the first place) and myself lost motivation to attend.

Since then, I've trained at home and alone. Which is no way to do it. I hadn't set goals, I hadn't diligently trained or practiced and doing a few random sessions a week with little direct motivation isn't really going to do anyone any good.

Now, with a big overseas trip looming, I'm faced with being the fat, stereotypical tourist. Not a role that I ever really wanted to play under any circumstances. But I've worked hard to build some endurance for this trip (mainly by doing as much walking and mid-level cardio as I can, so that walking all day won't be a strain).

I keep getting told that goal setting is very important. My bodyweight has been sliding between 172 and 177kg of late (with an average of 175kg - that's about 385lb), which is more than I want to carry about. It's not comfortable, it's not enjoyable, clothing in my size is generally not really that great and damnit, I miss being fit. My long term goal for bodweight is to make it down to 120kg (265lb). I'm around 6'6" and have a fairly solid build (the widest part of me are still my shoulders, despite my diet's worst efforts) and I would rather still have a strong build than go down to stick figure type proportions.

In terms of the BJJ and MMA training - I am going to work on getting graded to White with 1 stripe. For MMA? Well, I think that's all about the learning experience - and given that there isn't really aren't many finite points within that experience beyond competing and winning. On the conditioning side of things - I want to be able to run 4km without having to slow to a walk by the time things are done. Short term? I'll be happy when I can do 1.2km (3 laps of a track) without having to slow. So, to set it out clearly,

in 12 months (by 1 Dec 2009)
  1. Get down to 120kg within 1 year
  2. Get graded to Whitebelt with 2 stripes in BJJ
  3. Be able to run a 4km time trial without slowing to a walk
in 1 month (by 01 Jan 2008)
  1. To get under 170kg (there's X-mas in there don't forget)
  2. Start BJJ training (find a school I can work with)
  3. Shave 30 seconds off my starting 1.2km time trial time.
Now, this isn't all about just weight loss for the sake of health and fitness, there's also a big lifestyle part of it too. My wife and I want to have children, and I don't want to be the kind of dad who has to do a fatty grunt every time I bend down to pick them up. Not to mention all the potential issues that obesity can have on things like sperm production, motility and health.

Once I come back from the trip, I'll be starting my introduction sessions at the two local BJJ groups to see which one I'd prefer to train with. So, the next post can be expected by 07 Dec 2008.