travis' brain dump


Are you one Tough Mudder?

by on Mar.13, 2011, under Fitness, General

Tough Mudder… for those that know what it is, you know what I’m talkin’ about… For those that don’t? Well, it’s 8-10 miles of obstacles of rock, water, tubes, walls, wood, fire, electricity and yep, you guessed it, mud.

What am I thinking? Honestly, I’m not quite sure, LOL.

I got drafted by Randy to join in this, sure to be, adventure at the end of June…  Am I ready for it? No way what so ever! What does that mean? Yep, you guessed it… intense training. Am I nervous? You bet!

Training starts tomorrow and boy I can’t wait… *face palm* Surely I’d have picked a better day to start than the day after DST begins eh? *rolls eyes* It’s about 18:30 right now and I’m feeling as thought it’s going to be hard to go to sleep tonight… only to turn around have to get up at the equivalent of 2:45 (3:45 DST) to start working out. For the record… I don’t give a rats rear end about the stupid reasons behind DST. It’s dumb, and it kills people. (I’m actually not being dramatic, read: Is Daylight Saving Time bad for your health?) Regardless, I will be up at the crack of dawn sweating to the P90X blues, working during the day and then taking on another interval training in the afternoons before dinner and slipping into a coma due to exhaustion, er going to bed. What better way to lose weight right? I’m actually doing pretty good.

I finally got rid of my “work related weight gain” that I acquired last summer due to insane hours and lack of working out for 3 months and the subsequent 2 months of recovery I needed after. *NOT* doing that again. Only 15lbs from goal weight overall! Of course, after I finish up with this I have no idea what I will weigh… In other news, along the way I’ll be hitting up a couple 10k’s if all goes well. The Bolder Boulder is a must but if I’m training for the Tough Mudder, you can bet I’m going to decimate my time from last year. Last year I came in at 1:14:50. I’m looking for sub one hour this year. While I don’t know for sure if I’ll land in the upper 40’s, I will be breaking the hour barrier and at least be in the mid to upper 50’s. (personal goal setting at it’s finest!)

Here’s to hoping I don’t hit the snooze button tomorrow!!!

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Your Shape: Fitness Evolved (Game Review)

by on Jan.03, 2011, under Fitness, Tech Stuff

Ok, so I figured I would do a few postings up about different things in 2011, specifically, game reviews and other various topics. While it’s fun to put up crazy computer problems, personal updates and rants, I think adding in some more informational things might help out quite a bit as well.

This game review is for “Your Shape: Fitness Evolved” for the Xb0x 360 Kinect.  For a comparison to work with, I have also played The Biggest Loser Ultimate Workout.

Out of the box, Your Shape is much easier to use than The Biggest Loser as far as interface goes. The interface for The Biggest loser is really hard to maneuver and lock onto target while Your Shape has a very intuitive system that actually keeps close proximity to your avatar and allows you to select, then confirm your action in an easy motion. It also helps you to warm-up a little while you’re traversing the menus… rather than small controlled movements of the hand, you’re using your whole arm and moving it around to select options within the menu system. Kinect tracking is also better in Your Shape as The Biggest Loser tends to lose you a lot more. You also have you change your angle a lot and it does a poor job tracking you in different positions. Another advantage to working out with Your Shape is that you’re able to see your body moving on the screen to ensure that your actions are being interpreted correctly by the system and matching the trainer’s poses and speed. The variety of the workouts between the two is pretty comparable, while The Biggest Loser has a little more variety and somewhat easier exercises, Your Shape focuses on form and speed matching the trainer to get the most out of your exercise as possible. When comparing similar timed workouts, I was able to burn nearly double the calories with Your Shape than The Biggest Loser per my Polar Heart Monitor. Both games do a poor job of actually tracking the amount of calories you’ve burned during a session.  Both The Biggest Loser and Your Shape give you some things that keep things from getting too boring in the form of challenges (The Biggest Loser) and Gym Games and Classes (Your Shape). One of the nice things with Your Shape is the expandability and the “classes” they have for things like a Zen Workout, Bollywood Dancing and Cardio Kick Boxing.

While the actual workouts themselves seem to lack some of the detail and technique you’d pick up in an actual gym in actual classes or sessions with a trainer, I personally feel that Your Shape delivers about the best you’re going to get from a video game. Ubisoft has done a great job with a first release workout game for the Kinect platform. While the scoring system sometimes falls on it’s face because the system can’t exactly tell you’re doing the move right or wrong, it still does a better job than The Biggest Loser. The only downside to both of them is they do fall short when verifying correct form and encouraging correct form when your form is improper. However, anyone who knows their body should be able to determine if they are doing the exercise right or not as you should actually feel the exercise as opposed to feeling pain or nothing from the exercise.

My recommendation if you’re looking for a workout game for the Kinect, Your Shape: Fitness Evolved.

Now to get my hands on EA’s new game and see how well that works.

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i am a professional blog slacker … :)

by on May.02, 2010, under Fitness, General, Personal

That’s me. I am the professional blog slacker. 🙂

Well, to be honest I think I have a decent excuse or ten… It’s been pretty hectic. I think where I last posted was a good sign things were ramping up to drive me completely nuts. To be honest, I don’t recall everything that has occurred over the last couple months but it’s been somewhere in the lines of tons of career work and lots of home related work (remodel, kiddos, car stuff, workout, etc) so needless to say blogging has been the last thing on my list.

So to bring my little online community up to speed for things they may or may not already know. I successfully made it into the 220’s (albeit high 220’s) on the weight loss and I’m hovering around 19% on the body fat count. I can’t complain really, that’s pretty good considering I was out around 270 when I started this whole thing two years ago. So, almost 42 lbs down and more than 6″ off my waist is nothing to be disappointed over. We’ll see how this next round goes. I’m doing quite a bit more cardio as Amanda and I are training up to run the Bolder Boulder at the end of this month. Projections say I should see around 215 again. That would be nice… lol

In other news, we finished cleaning up the three bedrooms and the hallway to the upstairs in the house with a little remodel. Nothing like pulling out all the insulation in the exterior walls and replacing it with 2 levels higher of an R factor to make things a little cooler/warmer in the bedrooms. 🙂 It pretty much wraps up most of the work in the house in the odd areas. All that’s left is the kitchen/livingroom combo remodel and the two bathrooms and this house is done. I kinda wonder what we’ll do after that… Hopefully start building the house in the mountains if all goes well. Some pictures will be posted up shortly if they’re not already there when this is read.

I also passed another birthday… 31, wooo… I dunno. I remember thinking as a kid that I would be lucky to see 21 and here I am with 10 more years on top of that, two kids, a wife, a career, debt and everything else that goes in between. Wow.

Tons of stuff in between but hey, I’m still alive and all is well so that’s pretty much where we’re at. Hopefully I can get at least one or two posts a month as things go forward eh? *rolls eyes* riiiight.

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(Workout) Week 4 Results

by on Feb.07, 2010, under Fitness

wow… bad cardio week… i mean, terrible. lol At least I didn’t really gain anything but I didn’t knock off as much as I had hoped for. I lost pounds but not so much bodyfat. Bummer.

This week’s results:

237.4 @ 21.14% bodyfat ( -2.0 lbs -0.19% bf)

So, the results thus far:

START:  246.2 lbs @ 24.31% bodyfat
EOWK1: 245.4 lbs @ 23.46% bodyfat
EOWK2: 241.4 lbs @ 21.94% bodyfat
EOWK3: 239.4 lbs @ 21.33% bodyfat
EOWK4: 237.4 lbs @ 21.14% bodyfat

Month 1 Results:  8.8 lbs and 3.17% bodyfat lost

Well this week is back to the gym with weights again and the switched up routine to start off month 2. Hopefully I can get some better results in by the close of this week. This week was just silly. I definitely had enough cardio in and hit my burn marks but I think towards the end my eating habits fell apart which led to some less than ideal results on the bodyfat drop. At least I actually landed my weight goal and the math says I’ll still hit my goal by 4/3.

We shall see.

I’m going to hit a good number this week… even if I can’t roll out of bed next Sunday from being wore out, lol.

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