On October 13, 2010, in Miscellaneous, by scott

During the beginning of this year I was running regularly, lifting weights regularly, and not even giving a second thought about what I was putting in my mouth (due to the fact that it was more than likely health and clean.) I was getting back into decent shape and able to post a great (to me) time in a 5k while working toward longer distance runs in the fall.

Something happened in July which totally altered the routine I had developed for myself. I pulled my groin. Suddenly, there was a pain every time I lifted my foot off of the floor. Even worse, the pain that I felt while lifting my foot from the floor to the rudder pedal while working was at the point where I was using my arms to lift my leg. End result, about 3 weeks off of work.

I don’t honestly know how I did it, but I can tell you that it is something I don’t wish on anyone. The pain is something that is indescribable for me. My son liked to bounce on my knee, no more. My daughter would want me to pick her up for a hug, I couldn’t. I wasn’t able to walk without a limp anywhere. I wasn’t able to run. I wasn’t able to lift. I could lift the weights, but I couldn’t carry the weights from the rack to the bench.

The doctor told me to take it easy and stay down. Can anyone with an almost two-year-old and a four-year-old tell me how this would be possible?

Motrin, Advil, Tylenol, and Vicodin. These all became friends along with trying to stay down and constant ice packs on my groin.

Long story short, it is now October and I still feel pain after certain activities. I am doing my best to not overdo anything. The running is starting to come back. The weights are becoming more of a regular thing. Now to fix the food.

One thing that happened while laid up was something I look at with a bit of disappointment. I was not very active at much more than eating… and I’m paying for that now.

This leads me to where I am today: trying to push through a bit of pain to build up what muscle may have been lost. I know I did lose a bit due to my favoring the leg when walking for almost two months.

Oddly, for some strange reason, mowing the lawn put me out for the rest of the evening… and NO, I’m not trying to get out of the chore.

I am searching for that routine that I was familiar with for the first six months of this year. Energy to keep up with the kids. Motivation to get out and run at early hours of the morning while one the road. And the habit of working out, even if mentally I didn’t feel like doing it that evening.

Developing the routine for success. It hasn’t been easy, but I am determined to get back to where I was. To the point of at least one belt notch smaller. To the point of being able to bounce my son on my knee or pick up my daughter for a hug. To the point of being healthy for my wife, my kids, and myself.

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A Lesson in Humility

On May 1, 2010, in Miscellaneous, by scott

30:56. The time it took to run 3.1 miles this evening. 30:56! Three weeks ago, I ran this distance in 26:09. This evening’s run was a bit humiliating, a bit humbling, but much needed.

In a period of three weeks, I have not been running as often as I had before the 26:09 5k. Life happened. No races entered. No goals to train for. Oh, and a few things that also made it a bit uncomfortable to run.

The excuses:

Two and a half weeks ago I went to see a dermatologist due to a funky looking mole. He looked at it, said it probably wasn’t anything to worry about, but he wanted to take it off… so that’s exactly what he did.  (This particular mole was in an area that isn’t normally visible even if I’m just swimming trunks.) Knowing the possibility of removing this thing and potential recovery time, I ran 3.3 miles in under 30 minutes about an hour before the appointment.  (It’s amazing how a good run can help clear one’s mind)

The following week, I started the P90X program. WONDERFUL program and highly effective. The problem for me was when ‘Ab Ripper X’ turned into ‘Ab Puller Ouch!’ The first week went by and I felt great. The second week started with me not even being able to do one push up due to an ‘X-treme’ pain in my lower abs. It was at this point I decided that I should probably take it easy for a while.

Since the, I have jogged, hiked, and surfed, but nothing that pushed me too much… until tonight.

Abs feel ok, incision area feels back to normal, legs…. lungs… Where did they go?

Here is the set up for tonight’s run: (Please have a laugh at my expense!)

Wake up after having a couple tasty beverages last night

Panera Bread for lunch

Taco Bell Volcano Nachos for dinner <—-NOT a good idea before a run!!!!

Kids head to bed, wife rests her eyes, and I hit the pavement. It very quickly dawns on me that I can’t run my normal pace. After the first five minutes, my app is telling me I have only covered 0.4 miles!?! What? Have the GPS satellites changed positions?  What is this 10:40 minute/mile pace?

Legs feel like lead, pace and stride don’t feel right, breathing isn’t as easy as I have known it to be, the warmth of the nacho’s telling me they may need  TUMS, and the sweat that is pouring out of me all tell me that this run isn’t what I had become accustomed to. It was the necessary run to get things moving again.

After becoming frustrated with myself, I had to be honest with myself. It has been a while since I have had a decent run. It has been a while since I put good food/fuel in my body. It has been too long, and this was the start of getting back into my old cycle.

I kept putting one foot in front of the other, slowed the pace when I felt like I was working too hard, and put the miles in. Not the prettiest or most rewarding run, but one that I will remember.

This evening I have learned, if you fall behind on running, it’s time to lace up the shoes and get right back at it. No one can achieve their personal best without practice. It’s time to start training for a new personal record. Humiliated and humbled by a run, but still able to run longer than I was able to last fall when I started the C25K program, I look forward to my next run and returning to where I was three weeks ago. 26:09 NOT 30:56.

Happy Running!

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Pacific Sunsets

On April 25, 2010, in Travel, by scott

Over the past two months, every trip I have worked has put me in Hawaii for at least one night. The two locations where I find myself laying over are Kaanapali on the island of Maui and Waikiki on the island of Oahu. One photograph that I had always assumed would be an easy photo to make would be one of a Hawaiian sunset.  It turns out, this particular photograph would be one that would allude me for quite some time.

Waikiki Sunset

Timing. The largest obstacle I was facing  is the fact that when I fly back to the mainland, I am flying on the back side of the clock (aka red-eyes.) Another issue is the six hour time difference.

Due to the repeated trips to Hawaii, I have started to develop a routine (and I’m ready to get out of that routine!) Here’s a brief description of that little routine:

The arrival time is between 5 and 8 in the evening depending on the island. By this time, the sun is either setting or is about to set.

If the sun is still up, I run up to my room, change, then run back down to see if the sun is actually visible.

Bed around 8:00pm (which is 2:00am at home.)

Up around 4:00am (which is 10:00 at home.)

Out to run, take photos, and get food by 6:00am.

Try to rest throughout the day while seeing what I can see.

Do my best to get to sleep between 1:00pm and 3:00pm depending on the departure time.

If it is a later show time, I set the alarm to get up around sunset time. After the sun sets, back to bed.

Following this nap, it’s up in the middle of the night back home, then off to LA.

Most evenings, the cloud cover is to the point where the sky turns amazing colors, but the sun itself it not visible. The past two trips, however, this wasn’t the case.

The theme for this most recent trip’s photography was surfing. (I’m a geek like that, I go out with my camera, find a theme, and shoot as creatively as I can for that theme.)

Enjoy. If anyone wants any of these images, feel free to drop me an e-mail.

Surfboard and Sunset

Sunset, Surfer, and Sail Boats

Two weeks before the Waikiki photos, when the alarm went off in Maui, the sunset wasn’t ideal in my opinion, but there was still an opportunity to make a couple of photographs.

Maui Sunset with Tiki Torches

Torches, Trees, and a Setting Sun

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A Netflix Drama

On March 9, 2010, in Miscellaneous, by scott

The Truman Show. A movie my wife using to teach in her class. We have viewed this movie in the past, but that was a while ago, so she asked me if I could add it to our Netflix queue. The time constraint was that she needed it by Friday, February 26.

No problem! (or so I thought…)

I added the movie to our queue on Tuesday, February 23. When I added it, the queue said there would be no wait! The next day I placed one of our current movies in the mailbox figuring we’d get The Truman Show on Friday. If the mail had a hiccup or something along those lines, we should have had it by Saturday.

The next day my inbox showed a couple of messages from Netflix. The first being they received the movie I had returned and the second was that they were shipping Inglorious Basterds! I looked in my queue, and The Truman Show was still showing in the number one position as well as available ‘now.’

I then called Netflix customer service to ask about this and was told it was a mistake and he would have The Truman Show shipped out the next day and I should receive it by Saturday, February 27.  Saturday came and went… nothing. Monday, I get an e-mail FINALLY telling me that The Truman Show will be in my mailbox on Tuesday. Sadly, it was already too late as Crystal went to Best Buy and purchased a copy (for $6.00.)

Tuesday came. In the mailbox there was a Netflix disc inside of a USPS envelope. The Netflix package was destroyed and the post office placed what was left of the package in the envelope as well as an apology letter.

I showed the envelope to Crystal and we had a bit of a laugh over the whole thing. I then opened the envelope only to find out the movie inside was still NOT The Truman Show. but the Blu-Ray version of Valkyrie!  Once again a phone call was made to customer service. I had explained what happened and it was reported as a mislabeled disc.

By this point it was just ridiculous. I asked the gentleman on the other end of the phone line to please STOP The Truman Show from being delivered. He said he would take care of it and we ended the phone call.

Two days later, I get an e-mail telling me that Netflix received The Truman Show returned unopened and it was shipped back out again. To make a long story even longer, we did finally receive The Truman Show a week after intended.

We now have TWO discs more than our plan allows, they only show us as having one disc more, and we haven’t been able to watch any of them!

Through all of this, I do have to say that Netflix customer service representatives have been a courteous and friendly. At this point, all we can do is just laugh.

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On February 23, 2010, in Uncategorized, by scott

This past week, we lost my grandmother at 83 years young. Through much of the visitation and funeral, I was able to keep my composure. At the cemetary, we carried her by my dad. This was by far the hardest thing I think I have ever done. I miss them both so much. There are no words nor to expressions that I could do or say to symbolize or translate the pain in losing a grandparent or a father. I thank God for the time I’ve had with them and know some day, in the future, we will meet again. For now, I will mourn the loss, miss them both dearly, and enjoy the gift of family that God has been gracious enough to give me.

These were taken from my daughter’s third birthday. It just goes to show there is no such thing as taking too many photos or creating too many memories. I miss you, Oma. Someday, we will see each other again. For now, please say “hi” to your son, my dad. Miss you! (both of you!)

Oma With Her Smile


Four Generations (Minus Me/Daddy)

Oma and Madelyn

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