Monday, January 31, 2022

Invite you to my funeral


One thing about gracefully-aging is acknowledging that my clock is ticking towards an eventual date with the Grim Reaper. As a former older colleague once said when I asked him how he was doing, and he replied:  I’m getting older and there’s nothing I can do about it.”  Recognizing this as my truth is being honest and transparent rather than some delusional thinking that I might live forever.

So, the clock towards the end of my life continues ticking, one second at a time, one minute at a time, one hour at a time, one day at a time and one year at a day. When it will all end, who know; I don’t for sure and never will. It’s a mystery of sorts having the potential to bring unwanted misery so it can best be handled, by me, with a little humor.

I recently had a chance to have such humor when talking to a younger man, young enough to be my son, who had just finished a landscaping project for me. He’s a joker of sorts, quick with his wit and words and very capable of beating me to the punch with a one-liner that gives both of us a roaring laugh.

He recently did this the other day and I had to one-up him with my own quick wit, and I tried and did deliver a clever response to what he had told me.

What was it that I told him?

I said, “Robert, I like you and you’re my man, so I’m going to invite you to my funeral.”

Pax Domini sit semper vobiscum

Monday, January 24, 2022

During my 66th year of life


Good day Pierini Fitness sports fans, I hope you had a wonderful weekend. Mine was good enough, or as financial guru Dave Ramsey would say, “Better than I deserve.”

Anyway, I suppose I start this new week in a reflective mode, looking back at the past twelve months of my life. Why am I doing this? It’s because my 66th year of life is slowly ending. In less than one month, my aging clock will strike 67 years and I’ll continue in my journey of trying to live a good and honest life. And while I’m at it, continuing in my fitness, health, and wellness journey as I, hopefully, continue to gracefully age.

Since 2008, my Pierini Fitness blog has been a cyberspace sanctuary where I share what’s on my mind. And during my blogging history, patting myself on my back, I’ve composed and shared some wonderful reflections of me being a middle-aged man. As expected, I did have some blogging time-outs where I was missing in action or AWOL as it’s known in the military. But let’s call them blogging sabbaticals because that sounds more sophisticated.

I’ve always said that when I’m an old man sitting in my rocking chair on the front porch crapping my pants and watching the world go by, I’ll always be able to go back to my Pierini Fitness blog and take great delight in the many blogflections I composed over the years, providing me countless opportunities to reminisce about a life well lived.

However, there will be a big empty spot about my 66th year of life because my blogging the past year has been more hit and miss. This is a shame because it wasn’t like I was sleeping the past year. There were many wonderful life experiences and joys I experienced but I failed to capture them in a written middle-aged man reflection.

This will be my loss about who I was and what I did during my 66th year of life.

Pax Domini sit semper vobiscum

Monday, January 17, 2022

My fitness training confirmation biases

I recently attended a continuing professional education seminar about best investments and investment strategies.  One term presented in the course, catching my attention, was investment confirmation bias. 

It was explained as an investor’s tendency to seek information that supports their beliefs, bias that leads to focusing only on information that reinforces their opinions about an investment, and selectively choosing which information to use resulting in a lack of diversification and investments that are too risky.

This confirmation bias term distracted me for a moment, making me think about what confirmation biases I may have in my middle-aged man fitness training journey. 

For example, what are my tendencies to seek information that supports my beliefs about my fitness training?  How do these tendencies result in me focusing only on information that reinforces my opinion about my current training methods?

I’m currently in the fitness training minimalist “camp” of primarily doing pull-ups, bar dips, kettlebells, and burpees in my fitness training rotation.  This means I’m excluding a lot of other training modalities such as isometrics, resistance bands, barbells, dumbbells, clubbells, maces and other fitness gadgets to name a few.

How much fitter could I be, and more efficiently, if I opened my eyes with a willingness to diversify my fitness training methods, and to seek out new knowledge about these other training methods?  What cardiovascular-respiratory conditioning and strength endurance levels am I “leaving on the table” with my current minimalist approach?

Am I doing too many burpees at the expense of something else?

While I continue pounding away this week with my status quo fitness training, maybe I should spend some of my rest and recovery time between exercises and training workouts thinking more about my fitness training confirmation biases.

Pax Domini sit semper vobiscum

Monday, January 10, 2022

Doing the singles thing


There’s a training cadence to meet the needs of everyone if you spend some time searching for and reading about it. From the time-tested beginner barbell training protocol of three sets of eight reps to the German Volume Training protocol of ten sets of ten reps. 

Whatever you want, it’s yours to be had; all you must do is show up and do the work and, more likely than not, you’ll make fitness training progress if the protocol you use has a progressive resistance component to it.

I’m currently playing around with singles. One way I trained with singles was doing a singles progression of about eight to ten rounds with the final rounds being about 90 percent to a personal best attempt depending on how I was feeling and how I did with the previously completed rounds. Then, I’d close with a bonus round using a weight that was about 65 percent of my one repetition max. I’d completed as many repetitions as possible which gave me a nice closing muscle hypertrophy feeling that the singles didn’t deliver.

Recently I started singles training for double kettlebell overhead press, double kettlebell rack squat, weighted pull-ups, and weighted bar dips. While nothing is cast in stone, the workouts completed thus far have been of 20 singles every minute on the minute. 

Time will tell what return on my training investment doing these singles gives me. As a minimum, experience lifting something heavy for me should make lifting something not as heavy a bunch of times easier to do. So long as the singles training has a progressive resistance component to it, I can’t help but thinking this training will be fruitful along with the other work I’m doing.

Here’s a recent workout using a pair of 24kg kettlebells and doing a singles workout consisting of 20 singles done every minute on the minute.

It’s kind of fun doing the singles thing.

Pax Domini sit semper vobiscum

Monday, January 3, 2022

Resurrecting weighted squat work

For one reason or another, I dodged weighted squat work in my 2021 fitness training. I can almost count with the fingers on my hand the weighted squats I did last year.  The squat training abstinence party is over.  This year I’ll be doing weighted squat work regularly in my fitness training.

One of my excuses was that I was running and didn’t want the weighted squat work to get in the way of my running workouts.  Not that I was doing any spectacular running workouts, but that was my excuse.

Another excuse was that I was doing some regular burpees workouts and didn't want squat work to get in the way of these intense workouts.

I had no problem making excuses, like many other aging middle-aged man fitness warriors who dodge the squat, blaming it on bad knees, a bum back or that don’t want their legs to get any bigger than they already are. 

I’ve done weighted squats at various times over my fitness training life and there’s no doubt that they’re good for me. Having a little age on my bones and knees aren’t legitimate excuses for not doing weighted squat work. I just must be sensible about the work I do, and I will.

Recently, I tested myself with a pair of 24kg kettlebells and was able to do five reps. It was hard because I was sporting squat depth rust and weak wheels from squat training neglect. This result has become my day one benchmark to measure progress.

Then a couple days later, I did a squat workout consisting of 20 rounds of double 24kg kettlebell rack squat singles done every minute on the minute. It was a hard workout, but I finished it and, honestly, wasn’t as sore the next day as I was expecting. Here’s my effort:

It feels good resurrecting weighted squat work.

Pax Domini sit semper vobiscum

Saturday, January 1, 2022

Happy New Year 2022!


Happy New Year 2022 Pierini Fitness sports fans and my sincere apologies for my prolonged AWOL here. I was gone for almost six months. This is terrible and there’s no excuse for it.

I have no excuse other than blogger lethargy. I’ve been living my gracefully aging middle-aged man life and had a productive fitness training year but selfishly didn’t take the time to share as I’ve done so often in my past. Maybe 2022 will be different; I hope so.

Until I can get back in my groove writing my middle-aged man reflections about living and dying, gracefully aging, and trying my best to live a good and honest life, I’ll focus on sharing what’s going on in my fitness training. I’m training as a usually have – at parks and at home doing pull-ups, bar dips, kettlebell work and burpees. Much to my surprise, I’ve not done any running workouts in a while. So, once again, I suppose this qualifies me for the designation of “retired fun runner.”  We’ll see.

Stop by and check out to see what I share in the new year and hopefully you’ll walk away with a great fitness training workout idea occasionally.

Until then, take care, be safe and Happy New Year 2022!

Pax Domini sit semper vobiscum