Archive for July, 2010

Two Week Countdown Checkup

Sunday, July 25th, 2010

Since getting my official invite about a week ago I’ve filled out a bunch of paperwork for G4, and I believe am all locked and loaded to go to Venice Beach for American Ninja Warrior 2 in just two weeks.  Since I laid out a pretty detailed 5 point preparation program, I thought it would make sense to review my status on each of those tracks as I make my final preparations to compete in two weeks.

GRIP STRENGTH & ENDURANCE – I said at the beginning that there was “no substitute for a kung fu iron grip”, and that is still the case.  I was doing great in preparation for this until about three weeks ago when I strained my left hand during a climb.  After just trying to “train through it” for a while, I realized that I need to rest it, treat it, and rehab it if I was going to be able to run the course in Venice Beach.  After resting and treating it the last couple of weeks, including acupuncture twice (needles in the back of your hand hurts!), yesterday I worked out on it in some specific obstacle training and was happy to find that the strength has returned, although there is still some pain.  But as long as the strength is back, I can swallow the pain as long as I know I’m not doing further damage.

GENERAL STRENGTH – Feeling good, have been training harder and keeping to my plan for this.  Not trying to add muscle mass, but improve general strength.  Been doing a lot of core work too here, which has been great.

BURST CARDIO – Doing more here in the last couple of weeks, particularly since I’ve had to lay off my hand, and have been working hard at maintaining topline sustained cardio.  Been jumping some rope here old school too.

FLEXIBILITY – Have made great strides here.  Doing cardio more frequently and some heavy-duty stretching a few times a week have made me more flexible than I think since I was a teenager.  Didn’t even have to go to yoga to do it 😉

WEIGHT LOSS – Ummm…not so great here.   At the moment I am 216…11 pounds lighter than where I started three and a half months ago.  13 pounds shy on my goal of 203 which would have represented a 10% weight loss.  If I can get down to 210 for the event I’ll be feeling pretty good, but that’s still 6 pounds in the next two weeks.  Don’t know if I can do it, but I honestly only care a little bit about it at this point.  I’ve done what I could 😉

With two weeks to go, the only thing that really matters is getting my hand right so I can compete at 100%.  Weight, flexibility, etc., don’t matter a thing compared to that.

It’s officially on at Venice Beach!

Wednesday, July 14th, 2010

I got my official invite today for a guaranteed spot in American Ninja Warrior 2!  Yessssssssss!  Yesterday G4 announced that it would be held at Venice Beach on August 7th and 8th.  They announced open tryouts for people who want to come line up and run the course over the two-day weekend, so you know every free-runner, skateboarder, martial artist, and Hollywood stuntman in the greater LA area is coming out to play.  It is going to be a madhouse!  So I was SUPER-relieved today to get contacted by G4 giving me a guaranteed running spot and time, and avoid the need to stand in line all weekend just for a chance to run the course.  But I’m guaranteed now baby!  It’s on at Venice Beach!

More details to follow soon…

Still Waiting, Hand Jacked, Losing Weight

Monday, July 12th, 2010

Man, still haven’t heard from G4 whether I have an invite or not.  Neither has anybody else, aside from last year’s competitors who have been selectively contacted.  But no new applicants have been invited yet.  The event is less than 4 weeks away.  Going crazy!

My hand is sort of jacked up right now, hurt it climbing.  Not so bad that I wouldn’t compete, and it is definitely getting better, but that’s the last thing I need right now.  Got acupuncture last week which definitely helped, and will get another session later this week.  It is actually fine for Ninja Warrior obstacles, just the small crimpy holds for rock-climbing, my primary training exercise, are kind of painful.  I’ll be ready to go if called though!

After plateauing on the weight loss project at 220 (only 7 pounds down from where I started), my wife put me on the Atkins diet.  I’ve lost another 7 pounds in the last 10 days, and am feeling pretty good (not weak from weight loss), so I’m finally making progress.  Dieting sucks though, and I’ve been having MASSIVE food cravings.  Trying to be strong though 😉

Still Waiting, Still Training

Thursday, July 1st, 2010

Here we are on the first day of July, and I’m still waiting like everyone else to hear the time, date and location specifics for the American Ninja Warrior event which is maybe only 4 or 5 weeks away.  A couple of weeks ago Ninja Warrior posted on its Facebook page that they were close to finalizing the logistics, including for an awesome location with stadium seating for those that want to watch and a “kids course” for the little people to run.  Since then silence…until yesterday, when G4 apparently emailed the competitors from ANW 1 last year to notify them that the dates would be August 7th through 9th for a 3-day stretch.  Hopefully this means they will publicly announce the specifics soon, and can begin calling the people who submitted videos and they want to invite (nobody has gotten a guaranteed invite yet, presumably G4 is waiting to finalize time/date/location specs first).

In the absence of getting contacted by G4, I’ve been keeping up with my training, although I’ve struggled to maintain focus the last few weeks to be honest.  Lots of rock-climbing and grip strength stuff.  Some cardio and flexibility.  I feel off the wagon a bit last week when I went to the World Series of Poker to play in a couple of events…Vegas is hardly the best venue for training 😉  I’m hoping I get called soon with an invite, as I know that will inspire me to pick up my training over the remaining 5 weeks before the actual event.   Fingers crossed!  Waiting is hard!