Archive - February 2013

Lean Attitudes
My Road to The Death Race – What I’ve Learned since the POCAR
Featured Corn Fed: Marcus Miller
Da Hills!

Lean Attitudes

Change is emotional, it can take a huge toll on our attitudes and our progress when it comes to fitness.  I got into a funk the last few weeks in my own quest for abs.  I was discouraged and feeling like I was not making progress.  My weight hadn’t changed much and I felt tired.  I dug out these three principles that I wrote when I started my journey.  They are my own Lean and Mean Principles.

For me, Lean and Mean is a whole body attitude…mind, body, and spirit.  All three of these things work together or work against each other.  I was out of sync in all three and I was struggling to make any headway with my training, subsequently, my own attitude was poor and training behavior was reflecting this (mostly in the diet area).  Once I really decided to focus on ALL of the crucial elements, the physical part became much easier.  Now my weight hasn’t changed but a pound this week (for the positive) but I feel leaner, I feel tighter, and I notice my strength growing in key areas.  I can only attribute it to a harmonious balance in all three areas of mind, body, and spirit.

Lean Thinking – actively progressive, willing to commit and make changes.  Fat thinkers do not move physically or mentally. 

Lean Attitude – Optimistic, realistic, honest with self.  Willing to see the benefits of the changes and actively pursues a better personal state.  Fat attitudes = fat minds and body.

Lean Actions – I move with purpose now.  I have goals that I can measure and I actively pursue not only improving myself but also sharing what I learn with others.  I believe my successes obligates me to help others. 

Anyway, my quest is back in full swing.  Will the abs be present at the Midwest Spartan Sprint…maybe.  I do know I will be closer than I am today.

Previously Fat Guy

My Road to The Death Race – What I’ve Learned since the POCAR

For many of you, you may not know what POCAR mean or stands for.  Along with Michael Sandercock, Erik Krantz, and Josh Cuthbert, we attempted to do this potential 48 hour orienteering challenge that is hosted yearly by the Purdue Outing Club and the info for them is  Anyway, I am not going to go into depth on this but will only touch base of what happened and what I learned from it.  It started Saturday at noon, and we started out strong and covered ground quickly….one thing I learned about myself is I can burn up some hills and can do it quickly and over and over again.  That was, for me, a personal challenge after seeing what Killington Mt. did to me.  Someone mapped all the points we got, somewhere around a third of the total, and point to point, it covered 50K worth…so we know we went way over that with some of the paths we had to take.  With Michael and Erik with the compasses, we never got lost or turned around and never walked away without finding the points.  Great job guys!  Josh and I were more along for the ride which may have been worse because we didn’t have the course to keep our minds busy… after grabbing the 9 points and heading back for more, we took a break, ate, and were off, this time to the furthest ones away which seemed like an eternity…literally!  Having got those, we were all pretty beat and, despite our better judgement, decided to get a little sleep and see where we were in the morning.  Big mistake!  Not only were we a little sore, but it was damn cold!  The race was over for us but the lessons learned from this I will take with me into another endurance of its equal.

Lesson Learned:  Never stop, no matter what or how good it may feel, because if you do, the race is over.  Keep pumping my legs because if I had that much success just by running more, hitting the weights hard to add more power will only increase the success I had.

There, done with the wrap-up…I know I may be missing things but getting knowledge from the few things that stuck out in my mind are what’s important.

So, since the POCAR, I have upped my game in hopes that it will prepare me for the hardest thing in my life right after the most sacred thing in my life.  I will be getting married roughly 24 hours before I, along with several hundreds of the worlds finest athletes, go into a mind battle with Joe and Andy.  My meals I am eating consist solely of a Paleo nature and combining that with the supplementation I have been on has really been showing big gains in such a short amount of time.  I bought a new pack and boots and tested them out yesterday in order to see how my body and mind would react to them.  I have never carried an 80 lb. pack and haven’t worn boots since I was a child.  I was telling people I was going to do a 20 mile ruck but to be honest, I didn’t know how far I would need to go before knowing.  You may ask knowing what?  I can’t tell you that, that is for each person to find that answer to that question themselves.  I can only describe that as a connection between your body and mind.  It is like the two of them come together like when the train engine hooks up to its cars and they click together (only analogy I could come up with).  It took me 9 miles, actually 7 to feel that click, I had to walk an additional 2 miles under the scrutiny of the DNR officer to my van…I bet he loved seeing that…a guy completely covered walking with a pack big enough to hide a dead body and an axe and machete sticking out the back.  Do you know the feeling of when you are warming up for the big game and you are zoned in nothing around can stop your warm-up?  Last time I felt that was in high school when I started as defensive end….


Featured Corn Fed: Marcus Miller

Featured Corn Fed
By: Marcus Miller

What was your first OCR? SR Midwest in October of 2011

What is your next OCR? SR Indiana

Tell us more about yourself, Marcus.
I’m a 23 year old male nurse, in a long term care pediatric unit of a medium sized childrens hospital, I am there more than anywhere else, i usually am there to wake em up and get em ready for the day, and even as far as bedtime stories, or guarding from monsters (i make a darn good protector from things that go bump in the night) but I was a failure as a youth, but I have always had my goals set high, i was 250 pounds (combined, squat, deadlift, and bench press) away from a junior olympic weightlifting spot in 2006, 2 fights away from a golden glove award and a pro bout, and a knee injury away from competing for a state championship in high school wrestling (189 pounds!), I have only ran 2 obstacle course races due to finances, but im working on doing a few this year. I was apart of the petition for the founders race and man has it evolved from there, you guys are amazing, and even though im not as athletically gifted as you all endurance,speed wise, i make sure everyone gets over an obstacle before i do, meeting you guys was great, and i cant wait for my corfed round 2.

Next time you see Marcus on the obstacle course be sure to say hi! We would like to thank Marcus for his time and for sharing a little piece of his story with the rest of us. Keep up the amazing work, Marcus! We’ll see you again soon at the next race!

Da Hills!

Hills. The word sometimes used to refer to life’s obstacles, trials and tribulations. Us OCR racers use the term to identify…hills. Some big, some small, and, as with many things in life, when we talk about hills, size does matter. I write about this today following my race this past Saturday. This is two races now in a row that I failed to respect the hill. The first race was New Years day. I was not one bit prepared for the hills that loomed at me every step of the race.
Two days again, I faced the same thing. It was only one hill this time but it was a big, big hill, straight up into the sky as far as the eye could see. My Corn Fed buddies Dan, Jeff, And Phillip can attest to the enormity of said hill. We all see workouts telling us to incorporate hill training into your workouts, whether it is hill repeats or endurance running training. Both OCR training and marathon training work them into the routines. I am here to tell you to not ignore the advice.
A little bit of hill training for me could have made a big difference, if not just simply how to keep solid form and consistent pace, neither of which I had, and of which I became painfully aware of as, and I will call her The Lady in Gray, passed me effortlessly on the hill. The angst is more compounded by the fact she was probably 20 years older than me. (I hope I am moving that well in 20).
SO today I started my workout with a hill routine. A bit slower than my normal run, and a bit shorter but every bit as intense. I will not ignore the hills anymore. My advice is find that monster of a hill near you and take it on one day a week with everything you have. It can only help, and I venture to say some intestinal fortitude will be forged.

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