Remember You Signed a Death Waiver

I have been meaning to do a post like this…a short compilation of things on my mind or things I want to share, that by themselves, might not warrant a complete post.

Topic Number 1:  We ARE Tough Mudder Fluckers. 

While I do not want to make this blog about me and what I do every day (yawn), I feel a need to at least give you a quick synopsis of my 4.5 hour epic in Vermont on Saturday.  We were so fortunate to have no rain.  It wasn’t warm, and it was mostly cloudy and in the high 50’s, but it didn’t rain.   I’m not really sure why I am so grateful for that, given that within minutes of the “challenge” we were being sprayed with water from snow-making machines.  Each Tough Mudder course is unique, adapted to the local venue.  This venue was at a ski mountain in Vermont and was a new venue this year.  As a result the 2.5 hour “average” time to complete the course had to be totally made up, especially since it never changed even after they added 3 miles to the course and a dozen challenges.  In 2012 this race is going to be held at this location in July…totally will change the race.  I felt that overall the most difficult part of the race was dealing with the multiple challenges that involved 40 degree water.  You do this in July, and that makes the water a welcome sight.   And this is mud season in Vermont…not so sure about July.  I have never seen SO MUCH MUD. 

Team Tough Mudder Fluckers

You start out trying to avoid it…fairly quickly you are running right through it, hoping it doesn’t suck your shoe off (I threw my shoes out immediately after the race).  Sometimes it just went to your ankle, sometimes up your calf.  Despite my fear of the electroshock therapy, it turned out to not be much at all.  By far the worst was the “ball shrinker.”  The challenge itself wasn’t so hard, but the water you went through was bitter cold and you were in it for awhile…all they way in.  The scariest challenge for me was “walk the plank.”  It didn’t seem so bad standing at the bottom, but standing on top of the 15′ tower and looking at the water below that you had to jump into…scarey.  And once again the water took your breath away.  In the end, the highlight of the day was spending 4.5 hours with a group of people trying to fight our way to the end of the 10 miles of constant up and down the mountain, copious amounts of mud, snow, water,  nets and more mud.  Our entire team of 40-somethings completed the course as a team


There was laughter, fear, camaraderie, encouragement and a few warrior battle cries.  In the end, we all finished in one piece and it was a memory never to be forgotten.  Thanks Mudder Fluckers for an awesome, once-in-a-lifetime day.

Topic Number 2:  What’s With the 4 and 5 lb Dumbbells?!!

I do most of my personal training at a corporate gym.  The facility is pretty small, but has some decent, basic equipment.  There is a complete set of dumbbells, a few benches, and most importantly, a cable machine.  There are mats, a few stability balls, a medicine ball or two…and there is equipment that is pretty useless (and rarely gets used but takes up a lot of room).  No one ever asks me what I think the gym needs.  Periodically I will show up and there will be, for example, an entire new set of dumbbells or a new bench.  However, the other day when I showed up, randomly there were 3 brand new sets of 4-lb dumbbells and 3 sets of 5-lb dumbbells.  W…T….F??  We already had a set of 5-lb dumbbells…now we have 4 sets, along with 3 more sets of dumbbells that are a full 1 lb lighter.  Seriously, what a friggin’ waste of money.  I’m trying to get women to lift heavy weights, and now we have a lifetime supply of silly ass dumbbells…like those are going to make you a bad-ass (exasperated sigh).

Topic Number 3:  I’m not losing weight, but I eat really well…

I cannot tell you how many times someone tells me that they are having trouble losing weight, or they want to start losing weight, or they have recently put on weight that they want to lose…you get the idea…and yet (miraculously) they have a good, healthy diet.  Warning…if you aren’t able to handle a dose of tough love, please stop here…okay, you asked for it…Bulls***.  YOU CANNOT PUT ON WEIGHT or fail to take off weight if you have a perfect diet.  Do not try to tell me you have a thyroid problem…most likely you don’t.  If you really think you might have a problem, go get it checked out, then come back and read the rest after your doctor tells you that you do not have a thyroid problem.  I have recently put on a few extra pounds that I would like to take back off.  Generally I think I eat pretty healthy, and I exercise 8-10 hours a week.  But if you ask me why I have put on a few pounds, I will readily admit, it’s my diet.  While generally good, I am far from perfect.  Too much wine, eating out on the weekends (which generally translates into too much food) and boredom eating of things I shouldn’t (potato chips, peanut M&Ms) all adds up to a few extra pounds.  Recognize that in order to lose one pound a week (which most people are not happy with) requires taking in 500 fewer calories each and every day for seven days.  And that’s week one, one pound.  For the average woman, this translates to about 25% of your “maintenance” calories.  I think often people fail to really count all the little extra calories they take in here and there, that glass of wine they unwind with each night, that snack size candy bar they grab from the office candy bowl, the donut they have on Friday when someone brings them into the office, going out to dinner on the weekend…I could go on and on.  I am not trying to imply that it is easy to lose weight (if it were, none of us would be overweight).  But just don’t tell me you “eat healthy.”  Maybe you ate healthy yesterday or maybe you ate healthy Monday through Thursday…but it doesn’t take much to erase the gains.  So be honest.  If you really want to lose weight, write down everything you eat (studies show food journaling helps people to lose weight, probably because it makes them realize how much they are eating), watch portion sizes (a “serving” of pasta is 1/2 cup, cooked…that’s not a lot of pasta) and eat lots of vegetables.  In the end, while exercise is good, losing weight is about your diet.  Take a serious look at what you eat and stay away from the office candy bowl.

One last quick side note…last week I had the most “views” of my website yet.  Just want to thank all of you for reading.  Please pass along my web address to anyone you think might be interested in reading…thanks so much for your support.

About Lisa Van Dore

I have lived in Sherborn, Dover and most recently North Walpole, for a total of 15 years (and counting). Having recently been through the process of selling a home and buying (and renovating) a new one, I understand the conflicting emotions of excitement and anxiety inherent in the process, whether you are a seller or buyer, whether this is your first home purchase or your tenth. I have a BA from the University of Michigan and an MBA from Indiana University. My early career found me working as a CPA, and later as the controller of Crate & Barrel. More recently I spent seven years running my own personal training business. I understand the hard work and dedication necessary to build a business and a reputation...most of my personal training clients came to me by referral and my first client was still with me when I decided to leave personal training. This speaks to the level of effort I put forth for my clients, week after week. On a more personal note, I raced triathlon for seven years and more recently completed my first half marathon. In my free time I enjoy cooking, reading, Maine, hiking and, in the fall, following college teams are the University of Michigan (Go Blue!) and Texas Christian University (Go Frogs!).
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4 Responses to Remember You Signed a Death Waiver

  1. Maura Bennett says:

    Great post Lisa! You are funny!

  2. mary beth arigo says:

    Thanks Lisa- I love reading your blog. So informative and inspiring! (as I drink my beer and eat a brownie but hey, at least I’m well informed!)

  3. Bridget says:

    My sister and I just signed up for the 2012 tough mudder. We are using it as motivation to get fit! I loved your post! I would love your take on each obstacle if you ever have the chance! Bridget

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