October 31, 2016

a year with my nutrition coach

I've been on a roll with my nutrition. By no means have I been perfect. I don't hit my protein goals as often as I'm supposed to. But I've nailed my calorie goals almost every day for close to 2 months. I've been working with my nutrition coach for a year now. Most of that time I was either struggling or had given up entirely. I'm finally getting some traction and consistency. But looking back I realize I learned more from the times I was failing than I did from the times I was doing great. But regardless of how I've been doing, the one consistent was that Barry, my nutrition coach has been there. He's been an unwavering force in my fight to become healthier, a better weightlifter, and get down to the 105k weight class. Since working with Barry I've learned a lot about nutrition for athletics and I've learned even more about myself. I've always known I struggle with food. & that I use eating as a stress relief. Working with Barry has helped me find other ways to deal with stress (still learning, still in the process). But what's helped the most was learning how to find out what's important to me and how to accomplish those things that are really important to me. He sent me an email awhile back. It was after my 4th time falling off the diet wago. It helped me peel back many of the layers of who I am, what's important to me, and why. Some of the revelations were surprising. Some of my reasons were much more dark and selfish than I ever thought I could be. The email said:

"Find your "Why"?
A very important, but sometimes overlooked factor in success or struggle with making changes is WHY you are making the changes.  Finding a good "why" or not can sometimes make or break your ability to change.  If you are trying to make a change because a magazine says you should or because you think it might be a good idea, you may not truly be motivated to make the changes over the long term.
If you can find a reason to make changes that legitimately motivates you, drives you and is genuinely important to you, the chances of sticking to the changes are increased significantly.  
"Why's" are extremely personal, too.  What motivates one person, may not carry any significance to another.  This is why it is important for you to take a look into your own, personal motivations.  Your "why" for working on your nutrition may be to improve your health, to improve your performance, to fit into your favorite pair of jeans, to look good in a bathing suit or to set a positive example for you children.  As long as it is really important to you, it's a good "why", regardless of what anyone else may think.
A good exercise for digging deeper into your "why" is to go through an exercise called "The 5 Whys".  If you are in the ProCoach program, you've probably already completed this.  If not, what you do is start by asking yourself "Why am I doing....?"  Once you have that answer, you ask yourself "Why is that important?" and continue to ask yourself "Why is that important?" until you've asked yourself "why" a total of 5 times.  By the 5th answer, you should be getting a pretty deep look into what is truly important to you.  For example:
Why am I working with a nutrition coach? Because I want to lose 20# and compete at the highest level possible at my sport.
Why is that important? Because I want to push myself to be the best that I can be and see what I am capable of, all while living a healthy lifestyle.
Why is that important? Because I want to set a good example for my children so they know that if they work hard they can accomplish great things and so that they grow up with healthy eating habits.
Why is that important? Because my biggest responsibility in life is to raise my kids to be the best they can be.
Why is that important? Because they are the future, and I want them to have the skills in life to do whatever they want.
Find your "Why" and find your motivation."

I sent my weekly report to my nutrition coach on Sunday. He sent me back an awesome email. It said:

"I have to tell you, I'm really impressed this time around!  You're doing an awesome job, and each week you're sending me something that you did during the week that is a really big step in the right direction, like eating within your calories even while hitting a Chinese food buffet.  That's seriously awesome.  Numbers were really good again this week.
That said, this is going to be a little bit of a tough week, because we're going to take your calories down a bit to get the scale moving again.  I think there's going to be an adjustment period this week, so do the best you can and think about the goals when things get tough.  Really focus on getting the protein in, because that will help you feel full.  Drink lots of water, eat lots of veggies, because those things also make you feel full and veggies have minimal calories."

See, my nutrition coach is awesome. It looks like this week will be tough. Wish me luck. I'll keep you updated periodically as to my progress! 

October 29, 2016

Farewell to Ski weightlifting meet report

Today I lifted in the "Farewell to Ski" weightlifting meet. The meet was comimorated to the life of hall of fame weightlifter Norbert Schemanski who died earlier this year. It was held at High Dessert Athletic Club in Albuquerque New Mexico.

 I weighed in at 143.69k. Thanks to my nutrition coach Barry Schroeder.

My snatches have felt strong, fast, and I've had the best form of my life. Even on warm ups I felt unbelievable!
-My first lift was a 94k. Easy.
-My 2nd lift was a 98k. Easy. It also set a new NM masters 105k+ 40-44ag state record.
-My third attempt was a 101k. It felt so easy I felt I may have over pulled it. So I didn't finish my 2nd pull and I missed the lift. Even though I missed it I was still really happy. It felt so easy! I should have made that lift. Actually, I could have made a heavier lift. I've never missed a lift and been so happy! I'm sure I'm good for a 102-104k. That makes me happy.

Next up was the clean and jerks. I was cleaning great during warm ups. But my jerks were atrocious. I missed a practice 115k jerk. I barely made a 119k clean and jerk on my last practice attempt.
-My first clean and jerk of the tournament was 120k. I cleaned it super easy. I barely made the jerk. Coach asked me if I wanted to go for a 123 or a 125k C&J. I said 123k. He told the volunteers, "put on 125k".
-I cleaned it easy. I missed the jerk. I wasn't even close!! I had one more attempt of 125. The state record  is 122k.
-on my third attempt the weight landed to far forward. It rolled a little down my delts and my back arched forward. Somehow I was able to roll the weight back and straighten my back. At that point i was stuck sitting in the hole. But somehow I was able to stand up with it! Standing up after landing in such a bad position took a lot of effort. If I was going to make the jerk it was going to have to be because of great form, because i blew all my energy with the clean. All I kept thinking was keep my elbows high! Keep my elbows high! And after I dipped and threw the weight up as fast & explosive as i could, it was a good lift!!!! If it would have been 125.1 i wouldn't have been able ti do it. It was that close! That was the absolute most i could have jerked. It was a lifetime PR and a state record by 3k!

Overall I set 3 new state records of 98k/125k/223k. I missed qualifying for the masters national championships by 7k. But I don't mind at all. This was the best weightlifting meet of my life. Not only by the amount of weight lifted, and state records, b
ut also by how great I felt in the snatches, and how great my effort was in the clean and jerks.

October 26, 2016

no calorie adjustment this week

I sent my nutrition coach my weekly report. My calories were perfect all 7 days. My protein intake was great 6 out of 7 days. But I still didn't lose any weight. My #1  goal is to lose 2 pounds a week. In most situations a nutrition coaches would drop my calories. But my nutrition coach knows I'll be competing in a weightlifting meet this weekend. So he sent me an email telling me hes not lowering my calories to ensure a good weightlifting meet. How awesome is that? I have some really awesome people in my corner helping me to qualify for the master national weightlifting championships. If it's at all possible I will do it. Maybe not this year. But I will.

October 25, 2016

overtime and weightlifting training

My new job seems to be in a constant state of chaos and is short staffed. Which is baffling to me because the pay is pretty awesome. I can handle a lot of B.S. for a job that pays as well as this one. On most of my weekends my Captain will call and ask if I can work at least one of my days off. Sometimes both of them. The constant change of hours and shifts has made it difficult to get adjusted. But like I said the pay is great so I'll just keep my head down and do what I'm asked when I'm asked.

For the next 5 months my days off were supposed to be Tuesday and Wednesday. But my Captain has asked if I'd work every Wednesday until he's able to get us fully staffed- which hasn't happened as long as anyone can remember. So I'm just assuming I'll be working 6 days a week for the next 5 months- at least. He was nice enough to work around the 2 hour block I need with my coach on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Fridays. So between that and the pay I'm happy as I pig in slop. I'll leave the complaining and dissident to some of my fellow coworkers who have no idea how how lucky we really are. I've got a great paying job that is willing to work around weightlifting training. What more could a man ask for?

October 22, 2016

the masters national weightlifting championships and the American open series

Friday was my last big day of training before I tapered for the October 29th weightlifting meet. My snatches were great but my clean and jerks were absolute crap. I'm pretty sure I could only clean a 127k right now. And I couldn't jerk 125k to save my life. If I can't clean and jerk at least 130k there's no way I can qualify for the masters national weightlifting championships. I was really hoping to compete in the masters national weightlifting championships. But it might actually work out well. Coach Joaquin Chaves asked all of us to compete in the American open series as a team. At the American open series not only could I compete as an individual on a national meet but I'd also get to be part of a national team competition. My coach and team are awesome. That sounds like a blast to me.

October 21, 2016

post and shift bidding

Today I bid on the shift and post I'll be working the next 5 months. The bidding is based on senority amd I've only been working this job for 4 months. My only real goal was to stay off swing shift. My wife and kids are only home in the evennings so swings would have been horrible for my family life. All in all i think i lucked out. The good news is I'll be working during days and I'll be able to train with Joaquin Chavez of High Dessert Athletic Club 3 days a week. The bad news is I'll be off of work on Tuesdays and Wednesdays. I think it'll take me awhile to get weekends off. But that's ok. I'll get there eventually. Until then I'll be happy as long as I can train at High Dessert Athletic Club.

The horrible post I blogged about a couple days ago was taken by a senior officer who wanted nights, weekends, and Holidays off.

October 18, 2016

lemonade out of crap

The duty station (post) I've been working the last week has been as bad as I thought it would be. Stressful. Dangerous. Talking to crazy people tests even the most patient of people. But the good news is I get to train with coach Joaquin Chavez 4 days a week. And being trained by Joaquin is worth working a stressful post. So as hard as it is to believe I'm going to try and bid for this full time. If I get it I'll be working that post for the next 5 months. That means 5 months of awesome weightlifting training. I could accomplish some great things in 5 months. I've followed my nutrition coach's advise for the last 40 straight days. I've gained a lot of strength recently. Chacho Taylor ages up into my division on January 1st. So I'll need to be at my best. 5 months of being coached by Joaquin Chavez and nutrition coach Barry Schroeder full time and I'll be a beast. As unbeatable as I could ever be. I'm thinking this horrible post is the best possible thing that could have happened to me and my weightlifting career.

October 12, 2016

crappy work positions and great weightlifting

After I retired from the penitentiary I got a job that's been really great. Until now. Starting tomorrow I'll be working in downtown Albuquerque in a high danger and high stress post. I'm dreading this new nightmare post, but there is an upside. I'll be getting off work at 4:30pm so I can start training 4 days a week with coach Joaquin Chavez of High Dessert Athletic Club. I can't say I'm happy about working this new post. But it's really perfect timing. The next weightlifting meet will be in 17 days & there's no one who can perfect my form in such a short period of time like Joaquin can.  If I'm even close to qualifying for the masters national weightlifting championships, Joaquin will make it happen.
I think weightlifting after working such a stressful job will help me keep my sanity. Thank God for weightlifting.

October 09, 2016

multiple weightlifting coaches

My nutrition coach is having me maintain my calories on training days. On non-training days I'll be dropping my calories from 3600 to 3200.

I've been thinking about how great my snatches were on Saturday morning. I have been utilizing two coaches. One, coach Vernon Smith, on Mondays has been helping me with snatches. And coach Joaquin Chavez on Fridays and Saturdays is working with me on both snatches and clean and jerks. Each one has been able to find and help correct different problems I have in my form. I'm looking forward to my next meet. I think I may do something spectacular with snatches. Although I'm guessing my jerks will be much less than than dazzling. Jerks have always been my achilles heel. It sucks I clean so much but can't jerk it. The clean is the hard part.

October 08, 2016

American barbell for weightlifting

When I can't train with Joaquin Chaves at High Dessert Athletic Club I train at Iron Soul in Albuquerque. It's mainly a powerlifting gym but they have drop plates for olympic style weightlifting too. They are open 24 hours a day, so there's never any reason to miss training. The only problem is Iron Soul only has one bar with olympic grips. So I went ahead and ordered my own bar. It's an American Barbell, black and chrome. It was on closeout pricing. Only $199. Now I won't have to wait around for people to finish thier workout to be able to use a weightlifting bar. I'll have my own! And it's my first step of building my own weightlifting gym in my garage! 

struggling with the jerk

This morning at High Dessert Athletic Club coach Joaquin Chavez had me build up to a 90k snatch. That's only 7k below the the state record, and it felt rediculously easy. After that I built up to %90 of my max clean and it also felt rediculously easy, but I pressed out the jerk everytime. It's absurd that I can clean so much, but can't jerk it. Jerks are supposed to be the easy part. My next weightlifting meet is on October 29th. I better get those jerks cleaned up or I can kiss the 2017 masters national weightlifting championships goodbye.