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Call it a comeback! RC is Back!


robert
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So jealous.. I know I have alot to work up to an I can not wait!! If only I had more time. I changed my work schedule starting in March so I will work 4 day weeks every other week so I have an extra day to crank out in the gym and get to running again in spring!! Love having things to look forward to.

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1/19/12

 

Thanks all.

 

I am moving to Austin, TX in a few days. So much to do before I go! I'm even stopping in a whole bunch of cities, it is taking me 2 weeks to drive there

 

Today was a rest day. I meant to update my journal earlier but it is flooding in Oregon and I couldn't get home last night. I stayed with a friend but didn't get online.

 

The good news is, I stayed with a childhood friend I've known for 20 years and he just decided to go Vegan a few days ago! So having me stay the night at his place and talk to him about all kinds of things vegan-related was very helpful for him and I am very happy for that opportunity.

 

I'm also very pleased with the Oregon State men's basketball team victory! I was in the 6th row cheering them on!

 

Lots to do today including attending the grand pre-opening of Veggie Grill in Portland, OR. It is a popular vegan restaurant in southern California. Welcome to OR, Veggie Grill!

 

Gotta go!

 

Have an awesome weekend everyone!

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1/20/12

 

Thanks!

 

There is still flooding going on in my home town where I've been for the past couple of months. People are stranded, some are missing, some are dead, and it's been a major news story out in our little corner of western Oregon. I guess they were right about La Nina. This area is supposed to be colder and wetter than usual this year. We had our driest December in over 100 years and were wondering when La Nina would actually kick in. Well, she kicked in and has kicked our faces in. I was stranded and couldn't even get home last night and stayed with a friend. I drove through water today and left town. My brother was apparently waist deep in water and we're all being reminded of the flood of 96 which left many of our neighbors in boats and to get around and our city flooded, including homes, businesses, main streets, etc.

 

I drove through the rain to come up to Portland to take care of some business before I leave for Texas on Tuesday. I feel like I have a lot to do before I move. I'm generally anxious by nature. I may take more than 50 flights a year, but I still have trip anxiety because I don't really live anywhere and I work for so many companies and have so many projects going on, I never know if I'll get everything done before any given trip. This move is by car. I haven't started packing yet and I'm out of town now, but I figure it will only take me 2-3 hours to collect all the things I want to take with me when I move to Texas next week.

 

Tonight I came up to pick up thousands of book postcards printed locally in Portland and also to attend the Grand Pre-Opening of Beaverton's Veggie Grill. I'm familiar with this vegan restaurant chain in Los Angeles and was happy to see one of the co-owners tonight. I also met the CEO and it was an outstanding evening in general. They're opening up 2 (so far, maybe more, who knows) locations in the Portland area, which is exciting. Anyone familiar with Veggie Grill? Like Native Foods, this vegan chain is expanding and it is so awesome and exciting!

 

Of course I headed to the gym after dinner. Enough rambling, RC, get on with the training.

 

I plan to train legs tomorrow so I gave my lower back one more rest day by tackling abs and triceps, two muscle groups that don't get hit quite as often when I do my big compound lifts in my 3 primary workouts (deadlift and bent over row day, squat and lunge day, and overhead press, pull-up and shrug day).

 

Workout:

 

Warm-up: 20 minutes on stair climber

 

Crunches

30

30

30

Left side crunches

30

30

30

Right side crunches

30

30

30

 

Hanging Knee Raises (I had been listing these as hanging leg raises, but my knees have been bent, so I mislabeled them)

20

20

20

20

25

25

 

Plank

30 seconds

45 seconds

80 seconds (Yes! Finally caught up with kareno's time for plank)

100 seconds

75 seconds

70 seconds

 

Push-ups (yes, I'm doing push-ups again for perhaps only the 5 time in 10 months, since my injury. Exciting!)

25

20

20

15

15 (and 5 sets is the most I've done in months and chest feels good, no sign of re-injury yet)

 

Two Arm Overhead Triceps Extensions

65lbs x 12

70lbs x 12

80lbs x 10

90lbs x 5

80lbs x 12

85lbs x 10

 

Solid abs and triceps workout! I've been feeling really skinny and a little bummed since I've been back at it for almost 3 months now and have been doing exclusively compound lifts since Jan 1st (the past 20 days) and even the scale has been frustrating me. But today after the workout and all those push-ups, I saw myself in the mirror and was reminded of that bodybuilder feeling for only the 2nd time since my return to lifting. I know I'm still not very heavy, but my consistency the past 3 months has yielded some results. I can see my leg muscle separation through heavy loose sweatpants when I train legs and I could see veins through my longsleeve shirt today and once I got to the locker room and chest was pumped for only the 5th time in 10 months, it was a bit encouraging. I even did a little bit of flexing and likely even cracked a smile as I experience the joy of being able to train again, consistently, injury-free.

 

I immediately ate a bunch of fruit (including raspberries....soooo good!) and a bar and now I'm having a couple of burritos before bed.

 

Leg day tomorrow then heading back to my home town and hope the water has receded. Heading to another OSU men's basketball game. One of my favorite activities. 6th row behind the basket, watching and cheering with my uncle. Some of my current favorite moments.

 

Have an outstanding weekend everyone!

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Hi Robert,

 

Good luck with your move. I am really sorry to hear about the flooding mate. I hope you and your family are ok and well. We don't get to hear about this news in the UK so it was a bit of a shock to hear, myself and my wife both share our concerns for everyone there and wish for everybody's safety.

 

Anyway all the best best and thanks again for the this 12 days challange.

 

Be safe,

Doug

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1/21/12

 

Thanks Doug. Things started to clear up and the sun was out today so water has been receding. There are many photos online. Here's one to show what it was like:

 

http://media.kgw.com/images/600*359/IMAG1793+corvallis+flood.jpg

 

 

I didn't sleep well last night. In fact, it was some of my worst sleep I've had lately. I was staying with a friend and just couldn't get comfortable. The heater was loud and keeping me awake, my stomach was upset from eating a bunch of food then going straight to the gym to train abs, then eating a whole bunch more food, all of it bean-based, multiple burritos, chili, etc. so I had a stomach ache all night.

 

Total sleep was very limited and then I got myself going and drove 90 min back home and went to the gym.

 

Today's workout went like this:

 

Warm-up: Row machine for 15 minutes, followed by stair climber for 15 minutes

 

Bodyweight squats

30

30

30

 

Barbell squats

45lbs x 20

95lbs x 12

115lbs x 12

135lbs x 6

135lbs x 6

115lbs x 12

 

I'm still not real comfortable doing squats and don't trust my lower back to do any more weight. I realize I'm not very strong on them at the moment so I try to focus on relatively slow and deep reps and I think I'm still building muscle using the weight I can manage.

 

Dumbbell Lunges

40's (80lbs) x 26 steps

50's (100lbs) x 22 steps

60's (120lbs) x 16 steps

65's (130lbs) x 14 steps (and almost fell over)

55's (110lbs) x 20 steps

55's (110lbs) x 20 steps

 

Combined with lots of stretching, those two exercises made up a 1 hour and 40 minute workout! Of course 30 minutes of that was warm-up and then another 10 minutes of stretching and bodyweight squats before I even touched weights.

 

Being low on sleep and even calories by time I started this lower body power workout, it was noticeable but I still pushed it very hard. I was gasping for air after my sets of lunges, which felt really strong.

 

Tomorrow will be a rest day and then I'll hit it hard on Monday with my deadlift and bent-over row workout.

 

After the gym I had some Vega and fruit and potatoes and quickly showered and headed in to watch the OSU vs. USC men's basketball game. OSU-great/NBA-great Gary Payton was there in attendance tonight and got a standing ovation (of course, being OSU's all time greatest player) from about 9,000 of us. I was sitting in the 6th row. I met Gary before the game and said a few words to him about how much I appreciated him as a player both at OSU and in the NBA. Then I watched OSU dominate USC and win by 19.

 

I leave for Texas on Tue and haven't even packed anything yet. Still a lot of work to do.

 

Enjoy Sunday. Do something meaningful.

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1/22/12

 

Thanks Steve. I final full day here before I hit the road.

 

Today was a rest day. I should be able to get a workout in on Monday and then I leave Tuesday morning. I'll likely workout that night once I reach my destination for the evening.

 

I did lift a bunch of heavy things today. I did a number of different farm work tasks that involved lifting and carrying so in a sense, I had a mini workout today. But it was an official rest day so I'll mark it down as that.

 

Hope everyone had a nice weekend.

 

Heading off to bed shortly. Lots to do on Monday.

 

All the best!

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1/23/12

 

Today I took another rest day. I honestly didn't plan on it but since I leave tomorrow to move halfway across the country, I just had so much to do. I've been busy non-stop since I woke up and it is now midnight and I still have a lot of work to do.

 

Rather than feeling down or guilty for taking 2 days off in a row, I'm recognizing that I've only taken 2 days off in a row a few times over the past 3 months of consistent training and sometimes that rest is just what I need. Last year I had planned to take an entire week off after 7 months of training 5.5 days a week on average. The day I planned to be my last day before a full week off was the day I injured myself and set me back an entire year.

 

Since I'm nearly halfway to that point where I overdid things last year, I'm actually quite content taking a couple of days off in a row, especially as stress is high, anxiety is high, and I haven't been sleeping as well as I'd like lately.

 

And I did that heavy farm work yesterday so I even got a mini workout in at home

 

Well, back to packing (not just my suitcases, but still have orders that need to be shipped out tomorrow).

 

Thank goodness I have Vega energy drinks and bars to get me through my drive tomorrow. Tomorrow is actually a very short drive. After I run a bunch of errands (making my list now) tomorrow, I'll head out around 1PM for a quick 4-hour drive to stay with one of our forum members (one of the coaches in our program) hit the gym.

 

Then I'll have a longer 6-hour drive to San Francisco the next day, then a 6-hour day to LA. I'm making the trips pretty short drives, while seeing people all along the way.

 

Super busy time in LA will ensue for a full week, then over to Vegas, Phoenix and eventually Austin, Texas.

 

Night, night all!

 

RC 2.0

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1/24/12

 

Thx! Yeah, I should probably rest more than I do. I'm a go-go-go kind of person.

 

Today I had an awesome day of deadlifts and bent-over rows. I met up with mjcollette, one of the trainers in our program and we hit the gym for 2 hours upon my arrival. I'll hit the gym in the morning and then drive 6-7 hours to San Francisco, which is much more time that I'll have for sleep. I'm looking at 4-5 hours. Hope to catch up on sleep in San Fran.

 

Here is a quick recap. I've got to get to bed soon.

 

Warm-up: 15 min on row machine.

 

Bodyweight squats

30

30

30

 

Deadlifts (coming from a few inches off the floor because this gym wasn't meant to have weights crashing into the floor so I put short step benches under which raised the platform about 4 inches off the ground)

95lbs x 20

135lbs x 12

135lbs x 12

185lbs x 6

205lbs x 6

235lbs x 2

245lbs x 1 (recent PR since returning to lifting, up 7 pounds from last week)

195lbs x 6

 

Bent-over rows

135lbs x 10

135lbs x 10

145lbs x 8

145lbs x 6

145lbs x 8

135lbs x 12

 

I had multiple Vega products and a banana during the workout. I was hanging out with one of our coaches i our New You for the New Year program as I traveled through her town so we chatted a lot between sets. That was fine because I was lifting heavy weights (to me) and needed longer rest periods between sets anyway. I also got a lot of stretching done.

 

After the workout we had vegan pizza and also some tofu and vegetable curry and now I'm having some fruit at nearly 2AM before I head to bed.

 

Up early for a morning workout for 2 hours or so and then the open road to the bay area.

 

Have a great week!

 

-RC 2.0

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Safe travels!

In Bay area, incredible veggie restaurant- one in Haight Ashbury or Berkeley-

"The Herbivore"

and if you need to stock up for the drive, "Rainbow Coop" in San Francisco. i know literally every Natural Store (almost) between Portland and San Diego on the I-5, and then some, or store w/in reason, so if you need a good recommendation --just ask-- --YELP works, too..online),( except El Lay- I only know a few in El Lay, Real Foods Daily being one of the best!! cause I despise it and stay away as much as possible, except for work)- but the veggie and vegan places abound there, and the Whole Foods and a few Independants are great for finding what you need. and when you drive to Austin...YOU have to stop on the way from El Lay out at a place called Mothers Market in Orange County--one of the best places ever for a vegetarian/ vegan to shop!

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1/25/12

 

Thanks! I appreciate it!

 

After about 4 hours of sleep, I got up and headed back to the gym for nearly 2 hours, just like last night. I had a great visit with mjcollete and an excellent dinner and even on four hours of sleep, I was pumped in the gym today! I woke up to bruises on my shins from yesterday's deadlifts, which was exciting.

 

When I got the to gym, I got right down to business, knowing I had a 7 hour drive ahead of me. I wouldn't recommend the combo of 4 hours training and 11 hours driving on 4 hours of sleep (factoring the past two days) but that's how I roll sometimes and I'll sleep in big time tomorrow. I'm also downing Vega like crazy to help with muscle recovery.

 

My workout went like this:

 

Warm-up: 15 Minutes on the row machine

 

Then started with pull-ups. This is my 4th week on this routine, but my first time starting with pull-ups. I have always begun the workout with overhead press. Today I changed it up.

 

Pull-ups

Wide

12

15

12

Narrow

16

16

14

 

Dumbbell Overhead Press

35's (70lbs) x 20

45's (90lbs) x 12

55's (110lbs) x 6 - Super set shrugs with same weight for 20 reps

60's (120lbs) x 5 - Super set shrugs with same weight for 15 reps

65's (130lbs) x 3 - Super set shrugs with same weight for 15 reps

60's (120lbs) x 6 - Super set shrugs with same weight for 15 reps

 

Dumbbell Shrugs - I usually do 6-8 sets but since I did so many super sets, I just did 4 more.

80's x 15

85's x 12

90's x 10

100's x 10

 

Even on 4 hours sleep, my lifts were right on par with what they usually are. I did roughly the same amount of pull-ups as usual, perhaps even went heavier and had better sets of overhead press, and shrugs were only 5 pounds lighter than usual, primarily because I had to lean too far over to pick them up and didn't want to go any heavier than 100's.

 

I finished with 20 more minutes on the row machine and specifically put my arms in placement for an upright row position so I could feel it on my anterior delts a lot. It was kind of a combo of fat-burning cardio with more shoulder work.

 

After eating Vega and shopping for food, I drove to San Francisco and arrived around 6PM. I stopped along the snowy Mount Shasta region for a brief lunch and the rolled into the Bay Area. I had dinner with the Publisher of VegNews Magazine and will be meeting up with Eco Vegan Gal tomorrow.

 

Now, it's time to quickly eat a bit more and get to bed! I already posted a new contest and prizes in the 12 Days section and it is time to call it a night.

 

-RC 2.0

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1/26/12

 

Thanks Hayley. I did push it pretty hard but also got plenty of rest today. I went to bed before midnight and woke up after noon! A full 12.5 hours of sleeping, and muscle-building recovery! It was awesome!

 

But at the gym I did drop a 25 pound plate on my foot and I have no idea why! I was even talking to mjcollete who I was training with, saying, "I'm not sure why I just dropped that plate on my foot." It was while taking weights off after doing deadlifts. They gym had a carpet rather than rubber mats so I wanted to break the fall of the weight with my foot. So in reality, I was concerned for the floor. Luckily I didn't hurt my foot.

 

Today, after that amazing 12-hour slumber, I really wanted to go the gym, but I also knew I needed a rest day to rebuild. I decided to go to the gym to sit in the sauna and steam room and hot tub. While walking through the gym to get to the locker room I was tempted to hop on a cardio machine to help me get ripped or pick up some weights. I actually had an internal mental battle going on in my head about it which tells me I'm back in the bodybuilding mentality. I opted for nearly an hour in heat treatments to help me "relax" and recover and got some good heat on my lower back, especially in the hot tub. My lower back takes a beating from deadlifts, bent-over rows and squats specifically, so today's rest day was nice.

 

I went to a vegan meet-up in San Francisco today and saw some old friends, met some new people and had a nice time away from the computer. Now it's after midnight and I'm up at 630AM for a workout before driving 6 hours to Los Angeles.

 

Better head to bed soon.

 

Have a great weekend! Hope to see some of you at the LA Fit Expo!

 

-Robert

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1/27/12

 

Thanks you two! I appreciate your well wishes for my travels. I had a rough one on the road Friday, but I made it.

 

Today's workout.

 

I woke up after 4.5 hours of sleep, trained legs for 2 hours, and then ran errands for two hours and drove for 8.5 hours to Los Angeles.

 

My workout was an epic effort. Even with little sleep and up at 630AM which is hours earlier than I normally wake up since I often work until 2AM or 3AM, I had a great, hard effort for legs with some of my best numbers since my return to training.

 

It went like this:

 

Warm-up: 15 minutes of playing basketball. It was so fun and my first time shooting baskets in about a year! Basketball is my favorite sport. It's about time I embrace it again! I just played by myself but did lots of jogging, running, sprinting, jumping and shooting. I worked up a great sweat in only about 15 minutes.

 

Invisible jump rope: 150 jumps

 

Bodyweight squats

30

30

30

 

Squats - I've been content only lifting up to about 135lbs because I don't trust my lower back to keep me upright, with all my past injuries. But this time I put little 2.5lb plates under my heels like I did a year ago. I wasn't able to do that over the past couple of months because my gym squat rack is on a wood platform with iron weights which slide around and I'd slip and fall. Putting the plates under my heels helps my hips and lower back dramatically. I can use better and deeper range of motion with far less stress on my injury-prone lower back.

 

45lbs x 20

95lbs x 20

115lbs x 15

135lbs x 12

155lbs x 10

175lbs x 5

155lbs x 10

 

I know the weights aren't very high, but for me, they are moving up and I feel good about that.

 

Dumbbell walking lunges

45's (90lbs) x 30 steps

55's (110lbs) x 28 steps

65's (130lbs) x 14 steps

65's (130lbs) x 16 steps

65's (130lbs) x 15 steps

65's (130lbs) x 17 steps

 

I fell over at the end of at least 2 or 3 of those sets. Really pushed it.

 

By now I had fully sweated through my shirt and sweatshirt, something that rarely happens for me. In fact it happened after squats, even before lunges!

 

Then I decided to keep crushing it, knowing I'd have an 8-hour drive after the workout. I went over to the Stair Climber.

 

Stair Climber for 20 minutes. I never pay attention to number of floors or any other stats, but someone asked recently. I climbed 171 floors.

 

I was at the gym for 2 full hours for a great leg workout.

 

Then a long drive for hundreds of miles on little sleep. Something I don't recommend, but knowing that I am made up of part-machine, I handled it. The machine safely landed in Los Angeles.

 

Have a great weekend!

 

RC 2.1

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1/28/12

 

Today was an amazing day!

 

I had a hard time getting out of bed after that 4.5 hours of sleeping, 2 hours of training, 8.5 hours of driving and then once I got to LA, 2.5 hours of hanging out with my hosts until I passed out around 1230AM. Then I awoke at 530AM to use the restroom and then finally up around 7AM. Then back in the car for 90 minutes to get to the Los Angeles Convention Center.

 

While there, epic things happened. Today was one of the best days in my personal and professional life. Upon arriving at the L.A. Fit Expo, I saw my friends Jamie Eason and Jay Cutler and then I have the rare opportunity to meet one of the greatest athletes in the history of his sport. I met and signed a book for former Heavyweight Champion of the World, the Baddest Man on the Planet, Mike Tyson! So cool to give him a little bro hug, chat veganism briefly, hear him give some shout outs about Vegan Bodybuilding and be able to sign a book for him. Later others told me they saw him reading through it. Pretty exciting stuff!

 

I also signed a book for a top production team member for The Ellen Show, and met up with all kinds of other athletes, models, bodybuilders, friends, etc.

 

Today rocked!

 

Then I went out with a friend of mine who's doing a photo shoot with me for a magazine cover on Monday (Koya Webb). She hosted a vegan dinner party at her house and was sporting a Vegan Bodybuilding & Fitness tank top the whole time. She's been on the cover of a bunch of magazines, including a couple recently. She brings a lot of muscle, so I hope I can hang with her! I still have a long way to go in my bodybuilding comeback, but after 3 months of consistency, I'm getting there.

 

Other great things happened as well. I met Jon Hinds, founder and owner of Monkey Bar Gym, and met up with a bunch of others.

 

Also got word from http://www.veganproteins.com and http://www.veganessentials.com that they both need more Vegan Bodybuilding & Fitness clothing. It's moving fast on their sites and a lot our clothing was on display today at the L.A. Fit Expo which was awesome!

 

Today I represented Vega at the Bodybuilding.com booth and I represented Vegan Bodybuilding & Fitness at the T. Colin Campbell Foundation booth.

 

Amazing day and I'm amazingly tired!

 

Oh, one of the best parts.....I got out in the sun! I saw sun for the first time in months! It is freezing and flooding in my town where I was a few days ago, and in the mid 70's, bright warm and sunny out here in Los Angeles.

 

Loving it!

 

RC. 2.2

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Yeah, he was nice and friendly and pumped about veganism. Enthusiastically told me he's been vegan for 3 years. I told him I've been at it for 17 years, signed a book for him and told him to get in touch anytime he wanted.

 

I grew up watching him fight, and watched biography shows about his life and it was cool to see him in person, talk with him briefly and know that he's now living a peaceful, vegan lifestyle. So cool! A highlight for me for sure!

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This is fantastic news mate. I am really excited for you. You keep up all the good work, networking and training and we'll all do our bit in whatever small way we can as well.

 

Looks like the negative perceptions about a vegan lifestyle are gradually being overturned thanks to athletes like yourself. Who could ask for a better celebrity representative than Mike Tyson - who in their right mind would dare tell him being vegan makes you soft!?

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1/29/12

 

Thanks buddy. Had another fun day today at the Fit Expo. Talked with 4x Mr. Olympia Champ Jay Cutler and met one of my all-time favorite pro wrestlers Brutus "the barber" Beefcake, among others.

 

Yesterday was an off day, though I did carry a lot of heavy bags and did a lot of flexing. So much so that I was sore today. Today was pretty much an off day too. I did a 15 minute P90X ab workout tonight with my friend for 15 minutes. It was my first P90X experience and it was a tough workout.

 

Tomorrow I'm heading to the gym in the morning and then have a photo shoot in the after noon. I'm not in my best shape, but I think once pumped, I'll be able to get some good shots.

 

I better sleep now. It is late, as usual, and I have been going non-stop for days now. Long days, short nights, early mornings.

 

Night!

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Even though this was a month’s challenge I will still keep updating my journal as its a great way to be accountable.

 

 

It has been a great month and I just want to Thank you Robert for all your hard work and information available on the website to newbie Vegans!!

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