Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Welcome Back

Welcome back
Your dreams were
Your ticket out
Welcome back
To that same old place
That you laughed about

Jon Sebastion

I missed you guys :)

I know this is not going to come as a big shock to any of you but here's how my summer has gone. I have played a ton of sand volleyball, I have seen some amazing concerts, and I have lost weight down to my lowest number in 20+ years only to have 15 lbs come back on. I am so tired of fighting this same old 5% up and down on the scale that I needed to try something new. So I am really excited that I will be going to a place called Fitness North at the end of August... but more on that later. Lets get you caught up on what's been going on in Madison.

I bought a new car. This is the "newest" car I have ever owned. It is a 2009 Dodge Charger. I love it. It is ridiculously spacious inside. It has the one feature I wanted in a car...An ipod dock, I know I'm simple. And it looks like a beach at most times due to all the sand I drag into it. And there appears to be sweat stains and the sweet smell of 100 degree volleyball clothes in the car.

Let's start with my favorite day of the summer and one of my favorite nights ever. Jackson Browne played a solo acoustic show in Madison and I had the pleasure of enjoying the show with my wonderful friend Paul and our lovely wives. We had dropped a Sunshine Daydream sweatshirt off at the tour bus early in the day with a song request. And Jackson did not disappoint playing the pretty rare 'Love Needs a Heart' for me. And no show would be complete without me stalking my all-time favorite for a picture. Gracious, friendly and so politically in line with me. Nothing but respect for, in my mind the greatest American songwriter in my life. We are still running on empty for sure.

As long as we are talking concerts I got to do something I have never done before this weekend. I got to see a Beatle live in concert. And Sir Paul did not disappoint. 3 + hours, 40 songs, a ton of Beatles tunes, and a ton of Wings songs as well. Including my all time favorite Wings tune Maybe I'm Amazed. The show was at Wrigley Field on about as sweltering a night as you could imagine. When I got in the car after midnight the thermometer still read 92. I was a sweaty happy mess. Got to hear Let It Be, Hey Jude, Live and Let Die, Eleanor Rigby, All My Loving, Something, Day in the Life, Daytripper, Drive My Car, Yesterday, and so many more. A fine night with some very happy people.

Wouldn't be a summer without seeing my current favorite Miss Sara Bareilles out in support of her great new CD. Road tripped down to Millikin College in Decatur, Illinois for the show. And was rewarded with some very nice seats compliments of Sara's drummer. Another great night with a good friend.

The concert itself didn't blow me away but the experience sure did. After a 30 year break I got to see Jimmy Buffett in concert again. But more importantly I got to spend sometime with some very special friends. Including my great high school friend John Kennedy holding up the palm tree. Also these fabulous women who came into Madison for the weekend. These are all Fitness Ridge girls who know how to have a very good time. Can't say enough about how fun it was to have all of them in Madison for the weekend.

Like Springsteen and Jackson Browne, the 30 year break between shows for me is a big regret. I hate that I hid in my house for so many years and missed so much... Not any more. The parking lot is hard to describe but I have never seen so many people having such a good time tailgating like professionals. I thought I knew had to throw a tailgate but not compared to these people who brought boats, buses, bands and beaches for their parties.

I am certainly spending as much time in the sand as possible, playing four nights a week. I love it and can not imagine being without it. I really love to compete, but I really love to win. And my teams while not on top every night are first or second 3 out of the four nights. Mostly happy that my knee has held up really well. I had a hip issue early in the year that had me miss a couple weeks but happy to report that all seems well know

Here's my Sunday team wearing the new Volleyball jerseys.

I have done a couple 5K's this summer, my favorite taking place on a really cold windy morning. It was the Spring Sprint for the Arb. I was slow and I didn't think I wanted to do it, but I was awfully happy with how much of it I ran. I certainly miss the support I get when I do these races with other people and I think that keeps me from doing more, but I'm always content and satisfied when I'm done no matter how small the number of people that finish behind me is. It was 2 :)

One of my favorite Christmas gifts this summer was a Wisconsin hiking book. This was a solo hike I did at Natural Bridge, which you can see a tiny bit of behind me. I wish I had done a few more of these than I did but I really enjoyed all the ones I did. I loved the ones that wound around many of the lakes in the area. I do love walking by water. Which leads me to my next big adventure.

I have been stuck at my current plateau for too long. I need to try something new especially nutritionally. I had heard really good things about a fairly new program that was up on the shores of Lake Superior, called Fitness North. I spoke with the new owner and he wanted to come down to Madison to do a fitness evaluation and nutritional protocol for me in advance of coming. We also got a chance to have a long talk about their philosophy, their program and their plans. Leif Anderson kicked my butt in my gym here in Madison and I really look forward to much more of it. The facility is blow you away beautiful nestled on the shores of a gorgeous lake. There are two daily hikes, swimming classes, circuit classes and really the intense personal contact that used to exist at the ridge before the massive expansion. Each week is limited to 18 people. He seemed most proud of their follow up and family approach to their guests. He certainly impressed me by his desire to come meet with me and address my food issues. Anyone who sees "great promise" in me is the optimist and support I need. I have seen a lot of people spend a lot of money and have fabulous results in a structured on site program. I wish I had seen more who continued to keep going after they left, myself included, and it really struck me that it seemed like the number one goal of this program was to follow up after you leave and make sure you continue what you start at home. I think the small number of campers makes this much more manageable. I really can't wait to spend a week at a place I have never spent time at. I'm not going to lie I'm not sure I would survive in January, but August 28th it's going to be fabulous.

Here's me and my new guru :) I have a brand new eating plan. One that makes sense, one that is supervised, one that is designed for me and I am genuinely excited. I can't wait to head the shores of Lake Superior on August 28th for a week. If you want to go I know they are offering a special now that is buy one get one half off. So feel free to join in the new adventure.

That's your update. I will certainly be writing much more often and discussing my new protocol in much more detail. Until them Peace, Love, Lobsters, and the happy return to work of my racially offensive nicknamed NFL team. It's really time to change that name on my sweatshirt. Jim


Sabine said...

Glad to have you back.
I am going to check out this place for sure. I spent a week at a different "resort" this summer prior to Fitness Ridge.
Looking forward to your updates

Anonymous said...

It really is great to have you back on here blogging and encouraging all of us to keep going. Your fight that you struggle with is the same one that the rest of us face. Thank you for being so open and willing to share that for our sakes.

Fitness North sounds fantastic! Wish I could come in August but too short of notice right now.

Enjoy, can't wait to hear all about your new endeavor! You really are an inspiration and I admire your determination!

Deb said...

You look great - sounds like you had an awesome summer and I can not wait to hear about your new adventure and how your new personalize plan works. Take care friend!!!

BobbyC said...

Jake looks exactly the same after all these years. There is a touch of gray, but it suits. Remember words only have the meaning that we give them. A new generation can and often does change the meaning of a word. Let's make Redskin mean powerful, brave, winners of the NFC East, perennial playoff threat, and all around great team. We will all feel better.