The Spectacular Spider-Squirrel

My Spartan Startin’

So, I figure now is as good a time as any to start posting my journal of life-changing habits.

I’ll start with a little about me. I’m a 37 year old (almost 38!) dude, husband to a gorgeous wife (going on 17 years of bliss), and daddy to seven of the most awesome kids this world has ever seen; I’m 6’3″ (1.905m) and weigh in at 193 lbs. (87.54kg) here on Planet Earth.

Well, that’s today.

When this journey began, roughly 9 weeks ago, my mass measured 218 lbs. (98.88kg) in this same gravitic pull. Mix in this factoid: a full 22% of that mass was blubber. If you’re keeping tabs, that’s nearly 48 lbs. of fat! That’s a whole 6yr old kid!!

So, anyway, somewhere along the way I got all motivated and stuff.

Engineering The Alpha
I came across this book, can’t quite remember how, but it just grabbed my attention. So, I bought it. I consumed it, readily. I also spent time researching the concepts & philosophies espoused by authors John “Roman” Romaniello and Adam Bornstein — in fact, thinking back on it, I probably spent more time in research than in reading until I got to the actual Prime phase of the book.

Regardless, I was a believer and committed to following through on things. The results speak for themselves. I lost over 25 lbs in about 6 weeks. I reduced my body fat percentage from 22% to 15%. Whereas before I had 48 lbs. of fat kid hanging off of me before, I now have only 29 lbs., and it’s continuing to drop. Oh, and I’ve increased my lean body mass in that same timeframe. This is legit.

This isn’t what the post is about, per sé, so if you want to learn more then go read it for yourself.

Amazon Link: Man 2.0: Engineering the Alpha

“Well,” you ask, “what IS this post about, then?”

I’m getting there. Actually, we’re there. Now.

Obstacle Course Racing
My friend Jonathan invited me to be a part of some crazy obstacle-filled mud run called a “Tough Mudder”. Jonathan (JD, to me) was already a good friend, a brother in Christ, fellow competitive old man, and a teammate on multiple adult flag football teams of which I had been a part the past two years (couple of Championships in there, for the record), so if he was doing it, I was in.

And then I looked into it. I wasn’t ready. I may’ve been playing football, but there’s no chance that the little bit of exercise & conditioning involved with our football games was enough to prepare me for a 10-12 mile trek through 25 obstacles! Crap!

So, I had my external motivation. Time to lose fat, build muscle, and condition my cardiovascular strength to withstand the rigors of this Tough Mudder run.

And then a hurricane cancelled our race. Crap, again. Now what?

WOD Are You Gonna Do?
On June 13 this year (2013, for those of you looking into the future, or reading from the future) I discovered that Spartan Race was having a free WOD (that’s Workout Of the Day, for the uninitiated) a mere 2 miles from my house that upcoming Saturday. Neat! Sounds like fun! So, I attend.

What an idiot…

I figured it’d be an hour, I’d sweat, work hard, and then go home to my wife and kids as if it were just another day. Nope. Two and a half hours later, nearly 2400 calories burned, and having baked in nearly 90° weather the whole time, I was destroyed. And stinky. And soaked with sweat. And…

…and I FREEKIN’ LOVED IT!

It was UH-mazing. I felt ridiculously fantastic. I’m in. I’m hooked.

So, I go check out SpartanRace.com and get thinking about doing a race or two. Then three. Then four.

“There’s a Spartan Sprint in PA! That’s not too far away.”
“Ooh! And a Super Spartan here in Virginia!”
“Hmm. If I just complete a Spartan Beast, I’ll earn the vaunted Trifecta Tribe medal, and complete my Spartan status. And there’s one going on in the Carolinas!”

Next thing I know, I’ve purchased a 2013 Season Pass and have signed up for FOUR Spartan Races. Five, if you count the “Hurricane Heat” that I’m running immediately before my second Sprint.

And so it began.

Today, I’ve signed up for additional OCRs, including the Hero Rush, a rescheduled Tough Mudder, and I’m planning 2014 now. Already signed up for next year’s Superhero Scramble in the Carolinas.

I’m addicted.

My wife calls it the best mid-life crisis she could’ve ever hoped for, for me. I’m cool with that.