Wednesday, December 12, 2018

My Father ~ November 30, 1933 - December 9, 2018

"For this is a journey we all must take
And each must go alone.
It's all part of the master plan
A step on the road to home." 
-Christina Rossetti


My father Pavel passed away peacefully on Sunday, December 9th 2018 after a long and well-lived life.

My father was an artist, a craftsman, an engineer and a poet. His creativity was unending and even when the strokes he suffered took his language and his words, he continued to create with his hands until, that too, was taken from him.

There are so many things I can say about him as a father, an artist, a grandfather and a man but I think the most important is that he would give you the shirt off his back without a second thought.

Even now, after his passing, people are sharing stories of how and what he gave, especially the amazing wooden vases and flowers that he made in his basement workshop. If my father liked you, you got a vase and that's just how it was. He would give them away as gifts to nearly everyone who crossed his path and they are still cherished in many homes.

There is so, so much more that I can write about: his early life in Russia, his survival through WWII and the Siege of Leningrad and his childhood. I can write about how he was a dissident, a political refugee, a stranger in this land. I can write about how he lived here, became a citizen and made this his home but how his heart belonged to Russia. I can write about his motorcycle, the camping trips we would take by the Black Sea before we emigrated and the two suitcases my parents were able to bring when we left; one with clothes and one with family photos and books.

I can write about the poetry readings he took me too, the bedtime stories he used to make up every night about a character named "stupid" and his friends. I can write about the workshop he created in our home and learning to use the lathes, drills and saws to help with his art.

I can write about the Saturday mornings spent at craft fairs as we grew up, about bringing him to my high school history classes and translating for him as he spoke about what he experienced during the war, the random road trips and the vodka he flavored by hand.

I can write about his poetry, his travels, his hopes and dreams, his fears and his demons. His sense of humor and the practical jokes he played, his love for his family, the stories he used to tell and the Russian war songs he would listen to, the poems he wrote and read and the travels he took.

I could write and write and write and never fully be able to express who he truly was and what he was like so I will share the one story that truly encompasses who my father was to me.

In Russia, my father was an engineer and was expected to look the part including decent clothing but, at that time, his shoes were falling apart to the point where they were barely wearable. He and my mother scraped by with two kids (the younger two had not been born yet) and my mother finally got together enough money to buy him a pair of decent shoes. She insisted that he had to get them and so he finally went out to do that.

Two hours later he returned and walked into the apartment with a horribly guilty look on his face holding a wooden rocking horse behind his back.

My mother, shocked, asked "what is this?" and his reply was that it was for the kids. That we saw it when we passed a toy store days earlier and that we really wanted it.

Yes, my father spent his last few dollars on a wooden rocking horse for his children and continued to wear shoes that were falling apart.

That is who my father was and that is one of the many, many things he left with us. I know I inherited so much of who he was and the gifts that he had and I will always be grateful for that.

May his memory forever be eternal!

Wednesday, December 5, 2018

Needing to Pause...


I'm taking a short break from working out because I tweaked my shoulder on Push Day C and it's not feeling too good.

I don't plan to break for long, just enough for it to feel better and when I do work out again, it'll probably be at the gym rather than home (unless weather or circumstances dictate otherwise).

There's a lot I can accomplish at the gym that I can't at home and on days I can't make it to the gym I can still work out at home so it works either way.

For now though I need to rest my shoulder and polish up my gym workout!

Tuesday, December 4, 2018

Tuesday, December 4th Workout - Pull Day C - Back, Traps, Biceps & Forearms Plus Cardio & Yoga Stretch

I had a great workout today and I loved using my barbell! Tomorrow I have Leg Day C which has a couple of really tough exercises in it!

Pull Day C - Back, Traps, Biceps & Forearms Plus Cardio & Yoga Stretch: 2 hours, 10 Minutes Total Time

Warm-Up: 10 Minutes

Foam Rolling - hold 30 seconds per stretch & side:
Neck
Upper Back
Lats

Dynamic Warm-Up:
Forearm Plank:  3 planks x 30 second hold
Bird Dog - 10 reps
10 reps x bodyweight of every exercise of Pull Day C
Walk in Place - 1 Minute

Back, Traps, Biceps & Forearms: 57 Minutes

Superman with Heel and Elbow Squeezes - 3 sets x 15 reps: 3 x bodyweight

Seated Bench Single-Arm Anchored Band Reverse Lat Pulldown w/large handle- 3 sets x 15 reps: 3 x 30 lb band (doubled)

Standing 1-Arm Dumbbell Upright Row - 3 sets x 15 reps: 3 x 12 lbs

Reverse Grip Barbell Row - 3 sets x 15 reps: 3 x 10 lb plate + 2.5 lb plate on each side plus 12.9 lb barbell

Incline Bench Dumbbell Alternating Bicep Curl - 3 sets x 15 reps: 3 x 10 lbs

Anchored Band Hammer Bicep Curl w/tricep rope - 3 sets x 15 reps: 3 x 20 lb band (doubled)

Single-Arm Dumbbell Curl Over the Incline Bench - 3 sets x 15 reps: 3 x 10 lbs

Standing Behind the Back Dumbbell Forearm Extension - 3 sets x 15 reps: 3 x 3 lbs

Cardio: 35 Minutes: 
“Leslie Sansone's Walk At Home Burn Body Fat & Sculpt Your Arms: 2 Miles”: Fitbit info: time: 35 minutes, distance: 1.87 miles

Full Body Yoga Stretch (holding each pose for 15 seconds per side) - 28 Minutes

MyZone Info                                                       Fitbit Info

Monday, December 3, 2018

Monday, December 3rd Workout - Push Day C - Chest, Shoulders & Triceps Plus Cardio & Yoga Stretch

Today I started my "C" day workouts and it was a long workout day!

Push Day C had single-arm exercises for 5 out of the 8 different exercises so it took longer than normal. I also went lighter on the weights I used due to the fact that they were single-arm and could handle less weight and I learned not to go too high with the incline lateral raise :/ Plus today's cardio workout was 35 minutes long instead of 30.

I also had one new exercise I've never done before, the "around the world" exercise for the chest and I l liked it but I had to go super light on that one (3 lb dumbbells) in order to keep my form correct.

Pull Day C tomorrow (which also has several single arm exercises in it).

Push Day C - Chest, Shoulders & Triceps Plus Cardio & Stretch: 2 hours, 13 Minutes Total Time

Warm-Up: 10 Minutes

Foam Rolling - hold 30 seconds per stretch & side:
Neck
Chest Opener
Pecs

Dynamic Warm-Up:
Forearm Plank:  3 planks x 30 second hold
Knee push-ups - 10 reps
10 reps x bodyweight of every exercise of Push Day B
Walk in Place - 1 Minute

Chest, Shoulders & Triceps: 1 Hour

Incline Push Ups Using the Kitchen Sink - 3 sets x 15 reps: 3 x bodyweight

Single-Arm Dumbbell Flat Bench Alternating Chest Press/Chest Fly (vertical hold) -  3 sets x 15 reps: 3 x 8 lbs

Flat Bench Dumbbell Around the World -  3 sets x 15 reps: 3 x 3 lbs

Single-Arm Anchored Band Shoulder Front Raise w/large handle -  3 sets x 15 reps: 3 x 5 lb band (doubled)

Single-Arm Incline Bench Dumbbell Lateral Raise -  3 sets x 15 reps: 3 x 5 lbs

90-Degree Shoulder Pulses  - 3 sets x 15 reps: 3 x 3 lb dumbbells + heavy loop band around upper arms (15-20 lbs)

Single-Arm Overhead Dumbbell Tricep Extension Seated on Bench (dumbbells to the side of head) - 4 sets x 10 reps: 4 x 8 lbs

Dumbbell Triceps Punch Out -  3 sets x 15 reps: 3 x 5 lbs

Cardio: 35 Minutes: 
“Leslie Sansone's Walk At Home Burn Body Fat & Sculpt Your Arms: 2 Miles”: Fitbit info: time: 35 minutes, distance: 1.81 miles

Full Body Yoga Stretch (holding each pose for 15 seconds per side) - 28 Minutes

There's no MyZone info today because the monitor didn't log my workout correctly.       
   Fitbit Info

Motivational Monday

Sunday, December 2, 2018

Sunday, December 2nd Workout - Abs Day A - Upper, Lower & Obliques Plus Cardio & Yoga Stretch

Another great workout done and with today's workout I have finished my "B" days and am moving on to my "C" days tomorrow.

I'm losing inches, my body is stronger and I feel amazing! I can't wait for Push Day C tomorrow!

Abs Day B - Upper, Lower & Obliques Plus Cardio & Yoga Stretch: 1 hour, 53 Minutes Total Time

Warm-Up: 10 Minutes

Foam Rolling - hold 30 seconds per stretch & side:
Neck
Upper Back
Obliques

Dynamic Warm-Up:
Forearm Plank:  3 planks x 30 second hold
Hollow Hold - 3 x 15 seconds
10 reps x bodyweight of every exercise of Abs Day A
Walk in Place - 1 Minute

Upper, Lower & Obliques: 45 Minutes

Forearm  Plank with Leg Lift - 3 sets x Failure: 1 x 20 sec (8 leg lifts), 1 x 19 sec (7 leg lifts), 1 x 18 sec (6 leg lifts),

Flutter Kicks - 3 sets x 15 reps: bodyweight

Stability Ball Crunch  - 3 sets x 15 reps: 3 x heavy loop band around thighs (15-20 lbs)

Wall Toe Reaches - 3 sets x 15 reps: 3 x extra-heavy loop band around thighs (25-30 lbs)

Lever Crunch with Stretch Band - 3 sets x 15 reps: 3 x light stretch band (15 lbs)

Standing Cross-Body Crunch - 3 sets x 15 reps: bodyweight

Standing Dumbbell Side Bend - 3 sets x 10 reps per side: 3 x 10 lbs

Standing Dumbbell Core Stabilization - 3 sets x 10 reps per side: 3 x 10 lbs

Cardio: 30 Minutes: 
“Leslie Sansone's Just Walk: Walk Off Fat Fast - 30 Minute Big Burn”: Fitbit info: time: 30 minutes, distance: 1.65 miles

Full Body Yoga Stretch (holding each pose for 15 seconds per side) - 28 Minutes

MyZone Info                                                       Fitbit Info