Wednesday, March 29, 2006

In-Line Skating and Judo - a good combination?

So I haven't posted in a while. This is very true. I also haven't been going to class as often as I would like. Responsibility at work and at home have been piling up and so has the fat around my waist.

I got on the scale the other day and I was shocked. I realized that because I haven't been exercising lately, (and because I have been giving in to temptation) I have been gaining weight. I decided that I needed to supplement my Judo with other Aerobic exercise to take off those extra pounds.

Of course, in NYC, doing this isn't difficult, the trick is doing this without spending money. I realized that my office is close to the Hudson River Park - which, among other things, contains a skating and biking path. I decided to make use of my in-line skates and use them to get me in better shape. So yesterday I about 5-6 miles in three 1.75-2 mile spurts. I hope to do that more often on non-judo days to get my cardio-vascular system a daily workout and to burn some calories. Thankfully the weather is getting warmer, and this will prove to be a good activity for the next several months.

All that aside - I think in-line skating is a great compliment to Judo training. Obviously skating will improve my balance, improve my flexibility and increase my stamina. It is also lower impact than both Judo and running, so my cross-traiing will not take a toll on my knees.

What do you think? Do you agree or disagree? What do you do to Cross-train?

Tuesday, March 07, 2006

How Americans Became so Fat

Firstly, let me apologize for not posting in a while. I have been super busy both at work and at home, and quite Frankly, I went to Judo for the first time in six weeks yesterday. It felt good to be back, and I was happy to see my sensei and dojomates. Considering that I will also be away from the dojo for parts of April because of Passover, I will try to maximize my time in the Dojo for March.

Because Judo has been off my mind for the last few weeks, I wanted to talk about fitness. I have made it no secret that one of the many reasons I returned to Judo in 2004 was for fitness. I had no exercise in my life, and I needed it desperately. Combining Judo and diet changes took me from 230 lbs (104 Kilos) down to about 195 ( 89 Kilos) in about six months. However, since then I have given back between 5-10 lbs. This is probably due more to my lack of exercise over the past few months and not due to changes in eating. (Although I have fallen off of the wagon a bit).

Since New Year’s I have been exercising regularly every morning (nothing major, just some simple calisthenics and stretching). However, I see the need to put some regular cardio into my daily routine. Judo is great on many levels, but its biggest shortcoming is that you are limited in what you can do without a partner and a dojo. Currently, if I don’t get to the dojo, my Cardio is limited.

Going back to the topic of this post, Americans got fat when we started to eat indiscriminately and stopped exercising. Yes, a lot of people belong to a gym, but how many of them go? And even the ones that go, what are they doing there? If we would only put in 3 hours of intense cardio a week, we would all be lighter and in better shape. That being said, if I am not going to Judo at least 2x a week, I need to find Cardio elsewhere. I have thought about running.

The problem I have with running is that I’ve never done it. I was always a big skater and ball-player, but running or jogging was just not something that I have ever done before. Yet somehow, it needs to be something that I need to start doing.

I was going to put a running goal here, but I won’t. I don’t think it’s prudent to do that until I start running and figure out a reasonable goal for myself. But if you are a Judoka or not a Judoka, and have some running tips – post em’ here, I and all the other readers of my blog will appreciate it.