Rowing pneumonia

concept2 holiday challenge 2016Last week, I felt like crap. Finally, the day before Thanksgiving, I huffed and puffed to my motorcycle and puttered down the clinic. Diagnosis: walking pneumonia. So, I am dosed with antibiotics and other drugs but missed the first day of the 2016 Concept2 Holiday Challenge.  Maybe I’ll do some really light meters tonight starting tonight, Black Friday, but either way, I’ll do my best with whatever the state of my erging pneumonia, my rowing pneumonia.  

If I am going to throw my leg over my Model C Concept2 rowing ergometer with pneumonia, an infection that inflames air sacs in both of my lungs, filling them with fluid, then you can jump on your own Concept2 Indoor Rower and pull some meters between last Thursday, November 24th, through Christmas Eve, December 24, 2016.

TRX HOME Suspension Trainer

TRX suspension trainer straps review and exercises

TRX HOME Suspension Trainer

My personal TRX hanging from a real hotel door.

I love my TRX Suspension Trainer Straps. These days, I have it set permanently attached to my apartment’s front door with the included door anchor. But only when I use it. It is amazingly portable and stuffs into the included webbed pouch.  

I’ve taken it everywhere, be it in the bags of my motorcycle or in my TUMI roller of on my shoulder in a Filson bag. When it comes to training on the road, TRX straps travel much better than carrying weights or anything else with you.

Also, door-mounted exercises are limited but if you’re brave, you can walk or run to a local school or park and hang it from a tree limb or jungle gym using the included suspension anchor.

I mostly use my TRX Home Suspension Trainer for assisted push-ups, assisted curls, assisted squats, chest presses, inverted rows, tricep-presses, chest fly, chest press, shrugs — so many body weight exercises with such excellent possibilities for assistance.

My Own Personal TRX Straps

My personal TRX straps

The straps are really your friend.

It’s been a while since I have looked over the TRX site. It looks like they have three levels of TRX trainers:

If I were to do it again, I would probably just get the TRX Go as lighter is better and I am not a heavy-user or heavy abuser.

Another TRX hotel stay

Another TRX hotel stay

I might even get a TRX Go that is dedicated to travel and lives in my luggage instead of messing with the set I have set up permanently, and taped-down with duct tape, on the front door of my apartment.

That said, it’s my fault that I am not a heavier-user.

Once the grips start getting chopped up and torn and so forth, I am sure that some electrical tape or duct tape might help for a while — but I have had my TRX straps for years now and that’s never been a problem.

I am not a heavy user and I don’t so many exercises that require me to stuff my feet into the loops, so I don’t know if certain exercises wear down the foam grips/handles differently than the exercises I do on them.

Continue Reading

Only Put Water into Your Body in this Adapted Water Fast

I have never posted an infographic until today but this one is really smart: while a water-only fast can surely do amazing things to cleanse your body, it’s also has some potentially dangerous side-effects. How about just stop drinking anything besides water along with your normal diet?  Swap out all the soda, juice, milky tea and sugary coffee and just replace everything with water. Other than that, keep everything else the same.  The following infographic goes through the entire plan and its benefits. After the jump.

Continue Reading

40-4-40 Challenge Concept2 40-minute 40th anniversary

Just completed my 40-minute 40-4-40 Concept2 40th anniversary challenge!

40yr-challenge-web-hhco9I just completed the first ever — and probably only — 40-4-40 “pop-up” Challenge that Concept2 spontaneously launched on November 2.  The challenge was simple: row for 40-minutes on November 6th in honor of Concept2’s 40th anniversary.

It was slow and I broke it into two pieces, but I got it done. It’s all part of turning myself around as I have had a really anti-productive few months — actually more like six months! An entire six month since I recorded my last run! It’s been an eternity!

I am back in the saddle again. Actually, to be a little more precise, my Concept2 Model C with a brand new PM5 HR upgrade.

40-4-40 Challenge Concept2 40-minute 40th anniversary

Continue Reading

2016 Concept2 Skeleton Crew Challenge

Skeleton Crew Challenge today through Halloween

skeleton-2016webJoin me today, October 25, in the seat of your Concept2 Indoor Rower or standing astride your SkiErg, through Halloween October 31st, as we pull 31,000 meters in honor of all the candy and alcohol you’ll be consuming at all the Halloween parties and hand-outs you’ll be attending over the next six days.  

While 31 kilometers on their erg is nothing, the Skeleton Crew Challenge is an awesome first step towards rowing for distance and rowing for meters instead of rowing for power or speed.

Rowing for meters can even allow you to knock out meters while you’re knocking out your Amazon, Hulu, and Netflix queue.

If you think about it, it’s really only 19.2625 miles, divided by 6, only 3.21041666667 miles/day or 5166.66666667 meters/day.

Easy peasy.  

Good luck and here are all the deets!

Sharita Jennings joins ROWViGOR as coach of the Express class

Sharita Jennings joins ROWViGOR as indoor rowing coach

Here’s the latest update from pop-up indoor rowing studio, ROWViGOR:

ROWViGOR Indoor Rowing Coach Sharita Jennings

Coach Sharita Jennings

“I would like to introduce our newest Coach Sharita!  Sharita will be teaching a special Express Class in the mornings at 7:15.  Express is a 30 minute workout that combines upbeat movements with our signature erg-based exercises designed to get your heart pumping for those with limited time before work.  We will be releasing the weekday schedule for the Express Class soon but in the meantime here is a little bit about the newest member of our team:”

“Sharita is a self-proclaimed “fitness extraordinaire” dedicated to motivating everyone to get active and coming up with endless ways to make fitness fun! Sharita teaches everything from strength conditioning to high intensity interval training classes. She’s also a trainer with The North Face Mountain Athletics, helping people prepare for their next big adventure through community workouts. On top of all that, Sharita runs a fitness blog at and she contributes to various online fitness publications like ActiveLifeDC and”

“Help us in welcoming Sharita to the team!”

Row Vigor Logo“Your ROWViGOR Team”

“Email: [email protected]
“Phone: (877) 410-2481

Coach Morgan McGovern ROWViGOR

ROWViGOR adds US National Rowing Team member Morgan McGovern as trainer through October

Row Vigor LogoI just received this note from my friends at ROWViGOR:

It is our pleasure to introduce you to our newest Coach Morgan McGovern. Morgan is perhaps the coolest person we know – she is a member of the US National Rowing Team, a graduate of Georgetown, All-American and  oh yeah she speaks Somali.  

Morgan will be teaching our most challenging class yet called ‘The Guantlet’.  This class will be focused on those who are, or have been, competitive rowers or those just looking for a challenge.  Unfortunately Morgan will only be with us until the end of October so book your class with this superstar Coach now!

2016 Concept2 Fall Team Challenge

Fall Team Challenge day two of 30

I have fallen off the horse big time. In fact, in Reddit’s Fitness subreddit, redditors are so sick of people like me. I’ve had a terrible failure to launch.  Joining 9Round, XSport Express, and even Concept 2 Rowing Plan by Fitness Matters, didn’t do the trick so far. My excuse? I’m too weak! I’ve gone to ground!

slowrowSo, my plan is as follows: row as many slow meters as I can over the rest of the Concept2 Fall Team Challenge. So, last night, while I was watching so many hours of Captain America: Civil War, I pulled a slow 2:45 to 2:50 or so row for as long as I wanted, then stopped, relaxed, drank some water, and then sat down and got back to it.

I don’t have any more to report because I would like to spend more of my time rowing than writing blog posts about rowing. I’ll report more on my CSA, my diet, my changes, my goals, and my lifestyle in general.


I just walked across the African Continent

28381183844_653b45e294_bSo, I had been really slowing down on steps in my constant war towards defeating sedentarism towards my 10,000 steps-per-day but I blame my FitBit Surge. So, I figured out if you can run two FitBit devices concurrently. The answer is yes so I bought a cheap FitBit Zip from eBay for like $35 and set it up and now the steps are coming back like crazy. Even though I feel like my Surge is seriously glitching all over the place with its shitty interpretation of my sleep and my treadmill steps, I understand that my arms are pretty stable as I work from my treadmill desk (as I am doing right now as I write this). So, the steps are returning en masse and I was almost instantly rewarded by FitBit Mail with an email entitled Congrats on earning your Africa badge!, ”

Staggering! You’ve earned the Africa badge

It’s a jungle out there, but that’s not stopping you—because at 5,000 lifetime miles, you’ve walked the entire length of Africa! If that’s not a reason to go bananas, we don’t know what is.


It’s the simple things in life, I tell ya!

FitBit Surge Plus FitBit Zip

FitBit Surge gypped me on steps so I added a Zip

14251534834_f80b6f9c4f_oI do most of all of my daily steps on my LifeSpan Treadmill Desk DT-5. Since I am working on this desk all day, I am oftentimes leaning over a little, putting pressure on the built-in arms pads with my arms, and typing, typing, typing, isolating my movements so that I can focus on writing emails, contracts, proposals and hours client service work.  

9296076444_5191c574e5_oIt all used to work just fine, until recently. In the last months my FitBit Surge stopped logging my sleep accurately and it also never recorded more than 1,700-4,500 or so steps-day even though I’ve been working on the treadmill for hours all day long.

So, I assumed that FitBit changed its algorithm.

28895504532_5e42239b11_bFor a while these updates were good as my FitBit stopped recording my motorcycle trips as steps.

But now, my wrist-mounted FitBit Surge doesn’t record my treadmill steps well at all.

28381183844_653b45e294_bSo, I went onto eBay and bought a brand new FitBit Zip for super-cheap, added it to my FitBit devices (apparently the FitBit app can support multiple devices now — great news!), and all of a sudden I have so many more steps (and it’s not even ten AM this morning).  

So, I have things sorted.

PS: if FitBit reads this, yes, I have already done a couple hard restarts on the Surge it and it hasn’t helped the surge at all.