Sunday, August 28, 2016

Did well enough

Nothing like a little 47 mile bike ride to start your morning. Luke, Jack & Onnie, Jen & Chris, and IronNerd.

The usual route around Robinwood, then over to the Traditions course, up to 67, to Loraine Cowan, and back again.

You can imagine how it went: long, hot, sweaty, and ultimately boring. Worst of all, it only burned 1300 calories!

Happy with the outcome. Did well enough. Hopefully it continues to improve.

We shall see.

Saturday, August 20, 2016

Teachers & Anniversaries

August 20th marks Parents' Day at The MS School of Math & Science. Wake up early, more meetings, more reassurances that our students are in good hands, and ample appreciation that we were willing to send our offspring "off to school" two years early. One kid has already gone home. A couple more are on the watch list. But Liam is doing well and he is settling into his new schedule with surprising ease. Hoping Meg sees the value, gets past her inherent fear of the unknown, and she could be the second McDougal to land here, in a couple of year.

After the formalities, we went from class to class and met each of Liam's teachers. Each one of them was amazing. It's pretty much a guided tour through college for Juniors & Seniors in High School. So many opportunities and challenges. Projects and expectations. Most (if not all?) of the instructors have post-graduate degrees. And many of them have their doctoral degrees. If things work out, Liam will have several high-value projects under his belt, lots of official research experience from internships at MSU, and a ton of college credits from two years of AP classes. We were excited about his possibilities before today, but we're even more excited now.

August 20th also marks an interesting anniversary: Jon Met Cindy in 1994. Eight thousand, thirty six days ago. Or, is slightly harder to believe terms: twenty two years. A hot August night. Her last one before nursing school. My first one after finishing Spring Semester at the University of South Alabama. We quoted Shakespeare and had too many drinks and a nearly vulgar amount of kissing. And more than two decades later: here we are: sitting the classroom of our oldest kid, thinking it may be the future for our youngest kid.


Friday, August 19, 2016

Happy To Be Reunited

Four hours to Columbus. Side quest: install a new firewall and smart power at a certain local donut maker. (Double dark donuts, mmmmmm!) Main quest: Visit with Liam for the first time in three weeks!

The work went well, despite doing most of it while precariously balanced atop a step ladder, having to one-handedly cut through a dozen zip ties, and being bombarded by a Divatastic cacophony of mutated pseudo-English from angry, unseen employees. Couple of brief scares while the cable modem slowly awoke from its digital slumber. But otherwise, mission accomplished!

Afterwards, Cindy parked half away to Georgia and BOOM Liam surprised me by walking in alone! All lanky and relaxed, like his Old Man, rapidly approaching six feet tall, and (hopefully) happy to see me. 
Our first official meal together was at our favorite Columbus dive: Little Dooey! Spectacularly flavorfull. Surprisingly lowbrow. You order at the register and then they "holler it" to the kitchen. Twenty minutes of killing flies along the window sill later, the deliciousness arrives. Wraps and shrimp and pulled pork, oh my! Really scary how good it is versus the quality of the facility. But we're not going to ruin the secret by telling anyone, other than you.

Afterwards, we were tired from the drive. And Liam was tired from a tough week at school. Unpacked at the hotel, management rolled in a giant coffin-like bed, for Meg, and we proceeded to work from our digital addictions to sleep at our own pace. Happy to be reunited, for however long it will last.

Thursday, August 18, 2016

Back To The River

This triathlon season hasn't gone as expected. An unexpected change of jobs, the closure of my primary training facility,  supporting Liam's transition to MSMS, and all the extra associated stress have severely degraded my training to the point where competing in the short term is just a waste of time and money. My biking is good but my run is poor and a swim session hasn't happened in weeks. So several races (Possum Town, Cultivation Nation, and Ryanman)  are no longer in my future, for 2016. 

The New Plan is to restart a 12 Week Training Program, and compete at River Roux on Saturday, November 12th. (Along with several running events  between then and now.) Resume my custom strength & conditioning. Resume my mobility. And resume my modified swimming drills.

So, it's back to The River for 2016. Stick along for the ride! 

Wednesday, August 17, 2016

The Big Pitch

Second visit to a big client today. Lots of new notes. Reports and admonitions. All the Sales and Partners and the CIO and IronNerd, together to present The Big Pitch. Selling ourselves and our vision for their digital future. Get them to come on board. In some form or another. They'd be a huge addition to our roster. With plenty of nummy technology to wade through. Lots and lots of it. One of our biggest assimilations to date. And another step towards achieving our goals as a small, local business.

Work. Work. Work. That's all you'd see of me recently. High end projects from a high energy guy. But something has to change, soon. This time last year, Your Humble Narrator was returning from a training camp in Chattanooga. Pretty much in top shape and ready to race. These days? See above! Work. Work. Work. And my shape is threatening to become: round.

At least we're done with The Big Pitch. Now on to other adventures.

Tuesday, August 16, 2016

In Da Mouf

My disappearances are never planned. They grow from a seed of discontent and blossom into mighty growths of Sloth & Lethargy. One day gets past me. Then one week. Ad nausea. For a while, there was significant volumes of training consuming my cycles. Like 2-4 workouts per day!  But recently my absence has been due to a boringly mundane reason: work.  My day job. That Which Pays The Bills.

After a coworker left, the main bulk of complex projects (and a full time schedule!)  fell very unexpectedly onto my shoulders. We forecast that it would be 6 months before they could generate 40hrs per week of work for me. We didn't make it 6 weeks! These days, it is non-stop at the office. And many nights my thoughts are fixated on projects: what's next, what needs to be done, what's behind schedule, what's going where.

It has negatively affected my mood and personal productivity. My fuse is short. My energy is gone. My time is completely gone. And nothing feels good any more. It is like slowly chewing through a buffet moments after major oral surgery. Nothing but numbness and disinterest in anything other than uninterrupted silence for as long as possible.

Trying to get back on track, though. Resume proper training. Reschedule mobility and recovery. Get in my steps. Get back to serious training of myself and others. Just try to shrug off the negativity of my nerdly ways during the day. And refocus on improving the situation while planning for a better tomorrow. One day at a time.That's the plan, at least. But, as Mike Tyson warned us: Everybody has a plan until they get punched in da mouf!