Archive for progress

Outie Like 5k’s!

Guess who has two thumbs, no shoes, and finished his first 5k last weekend? Well, a few people, but more importantly:

THIS GUY! (And this guy’s wife, too!)

I will admit, I was hesitant to sign up for a 5k.  I have been running 3 miles for a few months now, but it has always been so tough for me. Being a geek, I have a perfection complex about the things I commit to. If I was going to run the race, I wanted to be as prepared as possible, running 5k at warp 9 without breaking a sweat.

The problem: I really haven’t committed to running. I do it because I know I should, but I go for weeks at a time without a run, and I’m quick to cut a run short if I’m “not into it”, i.e. LAZY.

But, I went ahead and signed up for this race, and it rocked my balls off (figuratively)!

It was a beautiful day. Sunny and about 50 degrees at the start of the race. I met up with my buddies Greg and Jeremy who were also running the race. Both of those guys are also in the 30+ pounds lost in 2010 club.

Nerds 2^2 Ever!

Jeremy (on the right) was rocking his Vibram Five Fingers as well. We were the only ones wearing VFFs as far as I saw.

And before I knew it, the race had started. I loved running with friends (I have never done that before). Especially friends that run just a little bit faster than I do. I ended up and pushed myself a little harder to keep up with them. I didn’t stay with them the entire time, but just that little extra bit of chase improved my best time by 3 minutes. Which leads me to the finish:

I think I won!

I came through at 28:51, rocking my VFF Bikilas, and feeling good (Much better than the guy who came through vomiting about a minute before). I was really happy about my time. I could have gone faster if I pushed myself harder, but being my first race, I was more worried about finishing it without walking than how long it took me.

I was even more proud of my wife who finished in 34 minutes (and had only run 3 miles once a few months ago, and that was on the treadmill). Go Titsworth family! Yeah my last name is Titsworth… you got a problem with that?

I know everyone told me this, but it didn’t sink in until I jogged across the finish line: RACES ARE ADDICTIVE!

I can’t wait to sign up for more and keep running, improving my time, and going longer distances. I missed the sign-up for the trail race that was this upcoming weekend, but there are 10+ races coming up between now and Christmas. The one I’m most exciting about is the Krispie Kreme challenge, where you have to run 2 miles to the donut store, eat a dozen donuts, and then run 2 miles back within an hour. Sounds gloriously painful :)

I wanted to give a quick shout out to a few of the people who pushed me to keep running (even though they might not know it):

  • Jess over at Half of Jess for talking me into getting VFFs and for killin a half marathon in hers.
  • Brandon over at A Healthy Dad for making me realize I can run faster (that guy runs fast for someone who weighed 290 just 10 months ago)
  • Steve at Nerd Fitness for reminding me that nerds can have a six pack other than Mt. Dew.

Thanks guys! I suggest everyone follow them on twitter and check out their blogs. Good stuff, fo sho!

Hopefully, this is just the beginning of my running journey, and I’m sure I’ll keep you updated as I keep at it.

I’ll leave you with a few more images from the event:

VFF buddies

The running fam

After the Race (and a sleepy baby)

When the Cat’s Away, The Mice Will… Write a Lot of Blog Posts!

Image courtesy of foskarulla on Flickr

You may have noticed that I have been writing more these last few days. Partly, that’s because my wife and my sister packed up all of the kids, 4 total from 10 months old to 7 years old (God, give them strength.), and took off to the beach.

Only one ER visit so far during the trip!

So I am wifeless, kidless, and have extra free time on my hands. But mostly, I’ve been writing more because…

I’ve been feeling really inspired lately.

The weather is nice, the air is fresh, the world is getting colorful again. But for me, there are three primary reasons that I have been feeling so good. I thought I would share them with you.

1. I’m almost there

Image courtesy of Evil Erin on Flickr

It is hard to believe, but I am nearly at the end of my planned weight loss journey. All I have to do is “just tap it on in, tap, tap, tappy.” Last December, I set out a three phased plan to lose weight:

  • Starting out: I started at 236 lbs. (Boo this weight!)
  • Goal 1: Be down to 220 lbs by April for my fraternity’s annual graduate dinner. Check (though I gained 3 pounds from the dinner and Pabst Blue Ribbon that weekend)
  • Goal 2: Be down to 200 lbs by September for my 10 yr high school reunion. Check (and the old high school honeys couldn’t keep up with my tootsie roll)
  • Goal 3: Be down to 190 lbs by New Years Eve so my wife’s birthday present can be ABS (And back abs, ’cause there’s a Situation up in here)

Really, I didn’t know what I should set my end weight goal to be. I ended up and chose 190 because it was a good even number on the upper end of the “Normal weight” BMI chart. (Holy shit! I just realized I am in the normal weight range on the BMI chart!) I knew that would get me to a point where I would really be able to assess my body and reassess my goals.

Do I need to drop 10 more pounds?
Do I need to start training for a strongman competition?
Do I look like a tool being so skinny and need to start going to Mickie D’s again?

I wouldn’t know till I got there… Well guess what? I’m 3 lbs away from 190!

I’ll write up a bigger post when I finally get there, but for now, I’ll move onto Inspiration #2

2. There are soo many good books out there

Image courtesy of luis de bethencourt on Flickr

I have tried to stop watching so much TV lately. In case your wondering, September is NOT a good time to stop watching TV. But after a late summer TV binge where I watched a whole season of True Blood, Mad Men, Fringe, and 3 seasons of Stargate SG-1 (Only 234 Stargate seasons left to go!), I decided books should move to the top of my priority list.

I wanted to share some of the one’s that have stuck out. You may notice that they are all non-fiction and pseudo self helpy. That is why I’ve been so inspired.

  • Rework (by Jason Fried and David Heinemeier Hansson) – This book really changed my perspective on how I go about my work. It’s raw and minimalist and all-around amazing. The book link is to amazon, but even if you don’t buy or read this book, please check out Signal vs. Noise, the blog for the company that that the authors run… incredible stuff.
  • Switch: How to Change Things When Change Is Hard (by Chip and Dan Heath) – Wow, I’m must be all about multi author books. I am only on the second chapter of this book, but the book’s introduction is so impacting that I had to go ahead and mention it.  They use an analogy for the psychology of change that has completely tangibilitated the whole subject for me (it’s so good, I made up a word for it). The introduction is available in the Amazon preview, so if you have a few minutes, go read it. You will not be disappointed.

But I haven’t just been inspired by the good ol’ bounded paper books. There have been some epic e-books out in the wild. One of my new favorite things is reading e-books while I workout on the elliptical machine. I’ll hop on there late at night, and get fully absorbed in these books. An hour later, I realize I’ve burned 700+ calories and by brain has just been filled with wonderful knowledge and motivation. Here are two that really hit me.

  • Fearless Health (by Matt Gartland) – I think I have mentioned Matt before, but this *FREE* e-book is spectacular. It came out in August, and sat on my virtual nightstand for a while, but I finally picked it up, and I am really glad I did. The book is directly targeted at your mind and it’s role in becoming vibrantly healthy… and it doesn’t miss. Check out this book and Matt’s blog Healthy Lifestyle Design!
  • Rebel Fitness Guide (by Steve Kamb) – You all probably know by now that I’m a huge fan of Steve and what he does over at Nerd Fitness. This book does not disappoint. It not only gave me motivation and inspiration, but it lays out a clear exercise and eating plan that will lead you to become, well, a bad ass. I will admit I don’t follow his plan religiously since my wife and I take classes at the gym together, but if I missed a class at the gym, I attack his plan with a vengeance. (Is it odd that I go to a gym called Empire Fitness, but I actively train to be a part of the rebel alliance?)

And lastly, I just bought a bundle of minimalist guides from some of the pros like Leo Babauta of Zen Habits, Everett Bogue of Far Beyond the Stars, and Adam Baker of Man vs. Debt. This package was put together by another awesome author, Karol Kajda of Ridiculously Extraordinary. I’ve been a outside observer to most of these minimalist blogs and authors, checking out their blogs now and again when they had a viral post, but this package was too good to pass up. The package contains 17 books for $27! Some of the books I was already thinking about buying anyways at their full price, but at $1.50 apiece, I couldn’t not click.

Check out the 17 Minimalist Guides sale here, it is only available for two more days (stupid limited time offers and my inability to not fall for them). I can’t wait to dig in.

3. I am actively trying to better myself

I mentioned in my last post that I am trying new methods to meet some of the lifestyle goals I have been having problems with. I am still only two days into it, but I can already tell the Geek Into Shape Goal Board is keeping me focused and honest.

I woke up this morning with a bad craving for a Pumpkin Spice Latte  (did I mention I love the Fall), but I was able to withstand the urge because all I could think about was that little yellow post-it note that says: “NO $4 COFFEE”. So instead of going to the coffee shop, I worked out for an hour. Two birds, my friends! Two birds!

Here is my progress so far:

First progress report

Back to the Grindstone

Well, now I’m off to do manly things like mow the yard and clean out the garage (my Wife gives me chores, you know).

I would really appreciate it if you would share some of your recent  inspirations with me in the comments section.
Do you have any good book recommendations?
Am I missing a new fall TV show that I shouldn’t be?

2 Months Gone, 10 Years Gone…

I know, I’ve been gone a while. But, hey, that’s the way life is. Work. Youngest baby started to crawl. You know, the regular excuse type stuff :)

So, I thought I would update everyone as to what has been going on in my world. Have no fear, I’m not out of the exercise game. I have been a little inconsistent, but I have been chuggin’ along and making some great progress.

10 years already?

I just had my 10 year high school reunion this last weekend, and I made my weight goal for the reunion – UNDER 200 POUNDS! I haven’t been there since my freshman year of college. I am also now wearing size 34 pants, and need a lot of new clothes.

It feels so freaking awesome to be where I am. I still have work to do, but I am at a point where I feel very confident in my size and appearance. I no longer feel “fat”. I just feel like I need to shape up a little bit. I feel like I am in control of my weight now and it is manageable.

Here are some comparison shots (I unsurprisingly don’t have many pictures of myself, but I am becoming less camera shy as I lose weight… It’s amazing how that happens):

December 25, 2009 - Playing the role of the jolly fat man too well

September 4, 2010 - Teaching my daughter the fine art of cornhole

I still need to keep at it, but I am pleased with where I am, and the maintainable changes I have made to get to this point.

Ow, my calves hurt.

I am also up to running a 5k in my Vibram Five Fingers. It took me longer than I expected, both from laziness time constraints and muscle soreness.  I kept wearing my VFFs to this high intensity cardio class at the gym. I was doing alot of jumping and quick direction changes in the shoes, which really stressed some muscles I wasn’t used to using. I kept off my feet for a week here and there, which slowed my progress, but I didn’t want to put myself out of commision for longer with an injury.  I’m not in a hurry.

I plan on running my first actual race this weekend if I make it back to where my parents live. If not, there is a race in my current town at the end of the month. I plan on running with some of my buddies, one of which will be wearing VFFs as well. Not that I’m against running in regular shoes, but I feel like I’m in a special, cool club since I switched to VFFs.

Website and Podcast

Like I mentioned above, I’m not out of the game, but life is taking priority right now. I will probably switch gears to write more about my personal journey. There are so many good sources for fantastic original content out there, like Nerd Fitness and Healthy Lifestyle Design, so I just plan on switching to a mostly consumer mode on geeky fitness content for a while. If I do have something to say or something sparks my interest, you will definitely see a post here or a guest post somewhere else.

As for the podcast, I don’t want to be a pod-fader, so I won’t. I’ll just be a pod-not-very-often-updated-er.  I have a road map for about 30 more episodes, but it takes a bit of work to write, record, and edit the episodes currently. And I have some more ideas that are taking up more of my brain power currently.

So that’s me right now! What have you been up to?

Come on baby, it’s my birthday!

Photo courtesy of Christophe Verdier

Well folks, today is my 28th birthday, and I have never felt better about getting older.

Just a few facts about this year.

  • I became a father of two, Hudson was born in November.
  • I gained 15 pounds this year (sympathy weight from my wife’s pregnancy).
  • I lost 30 pounds this year (against all sleepless-night odds)
  • I can now run a 5K (though I haven’t done an official 5K)

But the biggest thing this year has been my change in mindset

I really feel I have broken that weight roller coaster that I have been on.  The last six months have been the longest period of sustained weight loss I’ve ever had.  I have changed my thought process of weight loss and dieting. I have squashed some bad habits and started some good ones.  I have re-started this blog, which has been a big help. And I have found a good support community online (twitter and the Nerd Fitness Forums).

Even though I’m a year older, I feel better than I did ten years ago. I exercise more, I eat better, I’m more content, and I’m not hung over 80% of the time.

I’m really looking forward to what my 28th year of life will bring.

**UPDATE!** As I mentioned earlier this month, I am only asking for healthy presents. Nothing that will distract me from my goals, only help them.  So here are the results! Thanks to my wife and the parents.

More pictures are posted over on my wife’s family blog, check them out if you are interested in seeing pictures of my cute kids!

In other news…

Check out my guest post on Nerd Fitness

In case you missed it, I had a guest post published on Nerd Fitness this week. It highlights 9 different sports and activities that allow you to be a geek while still getting a good workout in.  It was fun!  I like interacting with a new audience and Steve over at NF has definitely done a good job building a community up.

Geek Into Shape Podcast

If you are reading this, then you are probably aware that I just launched a podcast.  I am really excited to keep working on this project.  As a huge podcast nerd, I love the audio medium as a way to spread news, tips, and advice.  I hope to deliver some high quality and content-packed bits of information over the next few months.

So subscribe to the podcast feed or check it out on iTunes if you want to get the latest episode direct to your audio listening device.

One thing I am looking to do with this podcast is make it a community effort, so if you have any questions, suggestions, ideas for a segment, or would like to send in a segment of your own, please contact me.

Future Posts

As always, I am working on other more posts for this blog, so stay tuned!

What’s Up With George (Oooooooo-wheeeee)

I said whaaaat’s uuuuupppp… with thaaaaatttttt?

I haven’t posted in a few weeks so I thought I would write a quick update about what’s going on in my world and the world of Geek Into Shape.

I’ve lost my age in weight this year.

January 1st of this year I weighed in at 236 lbs. This was not a good thing.

But no worries!

This motivated me to hit fitness hard again this year, and this year, I found my click. I weighed in at 209.5 lbs last week, which means I have lost 26.5 lbs, which also happens to be how old I am, since the beginning of the year.  This is about the only time I wish I was 50 years old. This is also the lowest weight I have been in sevenish years.  I give myself a whopping boom-shaka-laka.

Birthday Goal

My birthday, which I share with the American flag, is coming up in a few weeks.  I would like to be down to 200 lbs by my birthday.  With my current schedule, I don’t know if I will be able to make this goal, but I will sure as hell try.

I have also been thinking about only asking for healthy things for my birthday. I was originally going to get a the Droid Incredible, but I’m not up for a phone upgrade until the end of the year, so my new – healthier – wishlist looks like this:

1. Vibram Five Fingers

I’ve heard so many good things about these. Which kind should I get – KSO? Sprint? Classic?

2. Daily Burn Pro Membership

I really just want the cool profile banner, plus I would probably use some of the Pro training plans

Shake Weight

This is is for the Mrs. *wink wink* *nudge nudge* *say no more* *say no more*

New Socks

Because you always have to get socks as a gift, and this time, I actually need them.

Geek Into Shape News

So I have been putting some thoughts into new ideas and projects for Geek Into Shape.

I have a few post ideas floating around the ol’ noggin’.  I haven’t had as much time to sit down and write these ideas out the last couple of weeks, but I hope to get there soon. So thanks for being patient!

I have also been playing around with some Android development.  I really want to make a fun fitness application that incorporates a game aspect (like Farmville/Mafia Wars) and an achievement system to fitness and nutrition.  I have a few ideas, but time is the biggest limitation.  I do love hacking away at code and learning new systems, so I really hope to free up some more time to work on this.

I am working with an old high school friend to get a couple of fun drawings and graphics for the site. I have been wanting to create a Geek Into Shape logo for a while, and I would love to use some of the drawings she will be doing.  I’ll unveil them as soon as I get them. So pumped!

The final update is that I have been working on a top secret Geek into Shape project that I can’t talk about yet… expect an announcement soon though…  Ok, it’s a Geek Into Shape podcast and it should be released this weekend. Man, I suck at secrets. More information coming soon!

So what’s up with you?


October Weight Loss Update

This has been a spectacularly crappy month for me.  I ended th month at 267 lbs which puts me at a 1.2 pound gain!  The month started off with a week of vacationing and overindulgence.  After vacation I didn’t jump back on things like I should have; so I basically just maintained.  Just look at the graph.

 

October Weight Loss Update

October Weight Loss Update

Losing weight is going to be hard these last 2 months.  It’s getting colder, and I really won’t feel like running in the freezing temperatures.  I’m going to give it a go though because losing weight is all about momentum.  I’m sure the holidays won’t do much to help, but I can be good on the non holiday days.  I need to finish this year strong!