Monday, December 31, 2012

New Year's Resolution: To be boring

My New Year's Resolution can be summed up by three words: to be boring.

I want to be boring ...
... on my facebook / instagram activity
... in what I eat
... in my workout schedule
... in my morning routine
... in what I read

By developing habits, my efforts will be more focused. And I will actually get things done. While eating the same breakfast / lunch sounds boring, it will be easier to dial in my body for peak performance.

We are all different. For some, it is easier to develop a plan and stick to it. Others like to "go with the flow". I fall in the latter category to a fault. It is easy for me to keep changing things, but much harder to stick with one thing long enough to carry it to fruition. For that, I need clarity of vision and the discipline to patiently continue. To not stray from the right nor the left, but to walk in the way.

Sunday, December 30, 2012

Lifestyle Goals for 2013

Daily track expenses
Weekly financial check-up and savings evaluation (Friday)

"Paleo" --> CKD/IF
- Avoid: rice, noodles, bread, processed sugar, etc.
- Include: meat, fruit, vegetables, nuts and seeds
- Exceptions allowed: lentils / legumes, post-workout whey, 1 cheat day (Saturday)
- No beer; no more than 1 glass of scotch or wine per week
- No more than 1 cup of coffee per day
Meal planning for the week
- Sunday afternoon

Physical fitness
At least 2 rest days per week (Thurs, Sun)
Be more effective in the gym (be ready to work hard, idle less)

Social network
Limit Facebook to twice / day (<10 div="div" mins="mins" total="total">
Personal e-mail to twice / day (<10 div="div" mins="mins" total="total">

Morning routine
Exercise + shower
Bible reading & prayer
Audio Bible

Evening routine
Family devotions
Read book to expand the mind 
Bible reading (same as morning) & prayer

Saturday, December 29, 2012

CrossFit Goals for 2013

Goals to achieve by May 2013
                               Josh                       Jireh
Deadlift 10 x 405 lbs
(1 x 405 lbs)
1 x 450 lbs
(1 x 365 lbs)
Back squat 1 x 315 lbs
(1 x 285 lbs)
1 x 405 lbs
(1 x 375 lbs)
Front squat 1 x 250 lbs
(1 x 225 lbs)
1 x 315 lbs
(1 x 295 lbs)
Shoulder Press 1 x 175 lbs
(1 x 145 lbs)
1 x 200 lbs
(1 x 175 lbs)
Bench Press 5 x 185 lbs
(5 x 155 lbs)
1 x 225 lbs
(1 x 205 lbs)
Clean 1 x 225 lbs
(1 x 205 lbs)
1 x 300 lbs
(1 x 265 lbs)
Snatch 1 x 185 lbs
(1 x 155 lbs)
1 x 200 lbs
(1 x 180 lbs)
Jerk 1 x 225 lbs
(1 x 195 lbs)
1 x 275 lbs
(1 x 225 lbs)
Pull-ups (kipping) 50
Fran sub 4:30
sub 3:30
2 k row sub 7:00

Sunday, December 23, 2012

WOD 2012.12.22 - The Sower Revisited

Revisiting the Parable of the Sower

I'm in Luke now (audio Bible) and got the chance to hear Jesus tell the parable of the sower through Luke's account. Luke 8:14 stuck out to me, where Jesus explains about the seed that falls among thorns.

And as for what fell among thorns, they are those who hear, but as they go on their way they are choked by the cares and riches and pleasures of life, and their fruit does not mature.

At times, it hits me I haven't matured much in some areas. Still the same, or settling for much less. Not willing to take responsibility nor leadership. Not wanting to commit nor bear burdens. One of the causes is a lack of focus. I'm "choked by the cares and riches and pleasures of life". I get distracted too easily and do not remain. What's the cure? Jesus explains in the next verse.

As for that in the good soil, they are those who, hearing the word, hold it fast in an honest and good heart, and bear fruit with patience.

Wow. I need to hold fast to the word of God and continue in patience. Lord, help me hold fast to your word and keep pressing on.

WOD @ CFM (Dec 24)

While this song is playing, 1 burpee every time you hear the word "Thunderstruck"

12 days of Christmas -- CFM-style
1 Handstand Pushup
2 goblet squats 72/55
3 Toes to Bar
4 Ball slams 50/30lbs
5 Golden ring dips
6 Burpees
7 Pullups
8 Air Squats
9 KB Swings (72/55lbs)
10 Box Jumps (24/30)
11 1 Arm DB Snatch 45/25lbs
12 Mountain climbers
(Time: 38:39, my tank brother finished in 26:29!)
this one was pretty bad too. thankfully we didn't have to do 4 burpees every minute on the minute!

WOD @ Home (Dec 23)

12 days of Christmas -- Rak Chazak
this was the same one as we did at JHo's. a friend came over to do the workout ... by himself. so I decided to join in. we did it individual-style (instead of partner) to get it over with faster. we still didn't finish it. the burpees were killer. I ended up finishing the round of 10's.

WOD @ JHo's crib (Dec 22)

12 days of Christmas -- Rak Chazak (partner WOD; 30 min time cap)
... EMOM (every min on the min) 4 burpees (starting the workout with burpees)
1 frog jump around island thing (half way then run the rest)
2 pistol squats
3 shuffle burpees
4 MMA sprawls
5 squat jump and kick your butt with feet
6 Star pushups
7 jumping lunges (both legs = 1 rep)
8 pushups
9 squats
10 mountain climber pushups
11 jump over tire/wire
12 burpees

(partnered with Jenny, an awesome ball of energy! we got to the 2 pistol squats of the round of 9's)

WOD @ CFM (Dec 22)

10 min AMRAP
7 KB swings (eye level; 75 lbs)
7 push-ups
7 box jumps (30")
(score: 10 rounds - the same score as Alex! he's such a tank!)

rest 5 mins

10 min AMRAP
11 KB SDHP (75 lbs)
11 burpees
11 Russian twists (each side; 55 lbs)
(2 rounds + 7 Russian twists each side)
Russian twists were definitely the limiting factor; my butt was a bit sore / chafed from doing too many sit-ups yesterday, when we did "Annie" (50-40-30-20-10, double unders / sit-ups, 7:41). However, yesterday's workout was at 6 a.m.! First time in a while :) 

rest / chill

6 rounds
45 s snowboard jumps
15 s clapping push-ups
- 2 min rest -
6 rounds
45 s shuffle / burpees
15 s toe touch push-ups
Oh man .... if I wasn't already sore .. I am now. Mat and I did this to have a sample of what a Game Changer workout feels like. I am certifiably sore.

Thursday, December 20, 2012

WOD 2012.12.20 - Good soil

Good soil

In the opening of Mark 4, Jesus tells the parable of the sower to a large crowd. In his explanation to his disciples later, Jesus explains:

The sower sows the word. And these are the ones along the path, where the word is sown: when they hear, Satan immediately comes and takes away the word that is sown in them. And these are the ones sown on rocky ground: the ones who, when they hear the word, immediately receive it with joy. And they have no root in themselves, but endure for a while; then, when tribulation or persecution arises on account of the word, immediately they fall away. And others are the ones sown among thorns. They are those who hear the word, but the cares of the world and the deceitfulness of riches and the desires for other things enter in and choke the word, and it proves unfruitful. But those that were sown on the good soil are the ones who hear the word and accept it and bear fruit, thirtyfold and sixtyfold and a hundredfold.”
--Mark 4:14-20

I want to be good soil. Where I hear the word, accept it, and bear much fruit. Too often, I find myself similar to rocky ground with thorns! Wavering, lacking steadfastness and easily distracted by this world.


1 x 95 lbs, 1 x 145 lbs, 1 x 145 lbs
1 x 165 lbs, 1 x 175 lbs (failed)

Back squat (145 lbs; prescribed - 185 lbs)
KB swings (55 lbs)
Time: 7:27

Post-WOD double-unders: 77 (goal: 100 by end of year)

As I reflect back on the workout, I think back to the parable of the sower. From that story, I am reminded I need an unshakable foundation and a laser-sharp focus.

Unshakable foundation: This involves understanding the "why". What drives me? Why push hard? Why keep pressing forward? Why endure? Why work with diligence and excellence?
I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus. --Philippians 3:14
Laser-sharp focus: This focus is a clarity of vision. Your pursuit. Dreams. Goals. Aspirations. These need to be crystal clear, untainted by any distractions, refined through discipline.
But I discipline my body and keep it under control, lest after preaching to others I myself should be disqualified. --1 Corinthians 9:27
 (photo credit: Alexander Chiu)

As a random aside, last night, I had a Christmas party in downtown Toronto and was thinking about where to park after work. Then I stumbled across this awesome site! You can find the nearest free and paid parking spots in Toronto! How cool is that!

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

WOD 2012.12.18 - Prayerful vigilance

Jesus at Gethsemane

"Then Jesus went with them to a place called Gethsemane, and he said to his disciples, 'Sit here, while I go over there and pray.' And taking with him Peter and the two sons of Zebedee, he began to be sorrowful and troubled. Then he said to them, 'My soul is very sorrowful, even to death; remain here, and watch with me.' And going a little farther he fell on his face and prayed, saying, 'My Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me; nevertheless, not as I will but as you will.' And he came to the disciples and found them sleeping. And he said to Peter, 'So, could you not watch with me one hour? Watch and pray that you may not enter into temptation. The spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak.' Again, for the second time, he went away and prayed, 'My Father, if this cannot pass unless I drink it, your will be done.' And again he came and found them sleeping, for their eyes were heavy. So, leaving them again, he went away and prayed for the third time, saying the same words again. Then he came to the disciples and said to them, 'Sleep and take your rest later on. See, the hour is at hand, and the Son of Man is betrayed into the hands of sinners. Rise, let us be going; see, my betrayer is at hand.'"
--Matthew 26:36-46

The spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak. Oh how true this is! But Jesus says to watch and pray. To be vigilant, aware, not idle / slothful, and in prayer. Prayerful vigilance is a powerful thing.


Today was the last workout of the year at TCCC. This is the group that organized my first (unofficial) CF competition :) Here's what went down today:

Four rounds for time
1 bear crawl (gym length and back)
7 pistols (i.e. 1-legged squats)
1 stair ascent
7 butterfly sit-ups
7 bench jump-overs
(Time: ~10 mins)


After some rest, I stumbled over to CFM for the WOD. Today's workout felt good :) though an hour beforehand, I realized I should be more careful with what I put in my body. And for that matter, to be ever vigilant what I put in my mind, heart and spirit also. Here's what the workout looked like:

Shoulder press
5 x 95 lbs, 5 x 115 lbs, 5 x 125 lbs, 5 x 125 lbs (only got 3 reps)

Push press
3 x 145 lbs, 3 x 155 lbs, 3 x 165 lbs

20 min AMRAP
20 burpees
10 ball slams
20 body rows
10 ball slams
20 alt jumping lunges
10 ball slams
20 sit-ups
10 ball slams
(Score: 4 rounds + 10 burpees)

After a break, I practiced double-unders. Made it to 75. Think I finally found a rhythm. I just need to be relaxed. I'm hoping to make it to 100 unbroken by the end of this year.

Here is a really cool video on life, death and love. It tells the story of Jesus in a creative way. And here's an article titled "Stop Hanging Out with Women and Start Dating Them". Is hanging out an epidemic, or just where we are at in our society? What do you think?

Sunday, December 16, 2012

WOD 2012.12.16 - First CF comp

Awesome Verse(s) of the Day

But as he considered these things, behold, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream, saying, “Joseph, son of David, do not fear to take Mary as your wife, for that which is conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit. She will bear a son, and you shall call his name Jesus, for he will save his people from their sins.”
--Matthew 1:20-21

Workout(s) of the Day

Today was my first competition! It was a fundraiser for a friend going to Uganda with Raising the Village. While my brother came first and beat me in both workouts, I had a lot of fun and felt good about each workout. Here's what went down today.


3 Rounds for Time
9 Shoulder to overhead (135 lbs)
12 KB swings (55 lbs)
15 Wall ball shots (20 lbs / 10 ft)
Time: 7:21


30 DU (double unders)
25 Box jumps (30")
30 DU
20 Pull-ups
30 DU
15 Front squats
30 DU
10 Wall climbs (these were nasty)
30 DU
5 Handstand push-ups
Time: ... forgot :p

After the competition, I went to small group for our last meeting of the year. We had a potluck and gift exchange! Lots of fun! Love my extended family :)

I ended up getting peanut butter filled pretzels. But the gift I had before was pretty cool -- it was a CD by shai linne called "The Atonement". While it got stolen from me, my super awesome small group friend lent it to me for the week to listen to :) Stoked!

Friday, December 14, 2012

WOD 2012.12.14 - The Centurion

The Centurion

Today I started the New Testament on my audio Bible. I'm so excited~! Check out this passage from Matthew 8:5-13. Super cool!

When he had entered Capernaum, a centurion came forward to him, appealing to him, "Lord, my servant is lying paralyzed at home, suffering terribly." And he said to him, "I will come and heal him." But the centurion replied, "Lord, I am not worthy to have you come under my roof, but only say the word, and my servant will be healed. For I too am a man under authority, with soldiers under me. And I say to one, 'Go,' and he goes, and to another, 'Come,' and he comes, and to my servant, 'Do this,' and he does it." When Jesus heard this, he marveled and said to those who followed him, "Truly, I tell you, with no one in Israel have I found such faith. I tell you, many will come from east and west and recline at table with Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob in the kingdom of heaven, while the sons of the kingdom will be thrown into the outer darkness. In that place there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth. And to the centurion Jesus said, "Go; let it be done for you as you have believed." And the servant was healed at that very moment.

The part in bold is right about where chills were sent down my spine. Here is Jesus Christ, offering to come and heal, when he could have just spoken a word, healed the servant, and went on his way. And even still incredible is the response of the centurion. I think the part that really got me was, "For I too am a man under authority, with soldiers under me." We learn to lead others by learning to be led.

Ultimately, the Christian leader is characterized by how he is led by Christ.


After hearing this exciting story, how could I not workout? :) Here's what went down today:

Burpee pull-ups
SDHP (72 lbs kb)

2 min rest

2 for 1 wall balls (wall ball shot + squat in between!)
burpee box jump (20")

1 min rest

25 burpee toes-to-bar
50 v-ups

time: 29:08

I need to pace myself or I'll gas out quickly. First time doing the 2 for 1 wall balls. Tricky at first ... then it's just tiring! I'm excited for my first CrossFit competition this Sunday! Come out to CFM @ 1 pm if you're free! It's a fundraiser for a friend (I have yet to meet) going to Uganda!

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

WOD 2012.12.11 - Unafraid


At the gym today, I saw Psalm 56:4 tattooed on a friend's shoulder.

Here's what it says:

"In God, whose word I praise,
in God I trust; I shall not be afraid.
What can flesh do to me?"

Deezed. Reminds me of a picture I saw on tumblr.


On the drive home, a passage from Joel 2 stuck out:

"'Yet even now,' declares the LORD,
'return to me with all your heart,
with fasting, with weeping, and with mourning;
and rend your hearts and not your garments.'
Return to the LORD your God,
for he is gracious and merciful,
slow to anger, and abounding in steadfast love;
and he relents over disaster. 
Who knows whether he will not turn and relent,
and leave a blessing behind him
a grain offering and a drink offering
for the LORD your God?"
--Joel 2:12-14


Today's workout looked something like this:

Push Press
5 x 95 lbs, 5 x 135 lbs, 4 x 155 lbs, 1 x 175 lbs (lost grip)
5 x 95 lbs, 3 x 125 lbs, 3 x 125 lbs, 3 x 125 lbs

Deadlifts (225#)
Time: 9:47, 1 hr rest, 17:45

Monday, December 10, 2012

WOD 2012.12.10 - Steadfastness


"Count it all joy, my brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds, for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness. And let steadfastness have its full effect, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing." --James 1:2-4


2 rounds (with 45# bar)
8 snatch balance
8 Sotts press

Clean and Jerk
1 x 95 lbs, 1 x 145 lbs, 1 x 175 lbs, 1 x 195 lbs (PR!)
1 x 205 lbs (fail*), 1 x 205 lbs (fail**), 1 x 205 lbs (fail**), 1 x 205 lbs (fail**)
*failed the clean
**failed the jerk (i.e. clean PR!)

Skill work
Kipping HSPU (deficit)
Butterfly pull-ups

4 x 500 m run (not for time)

7 mins max burpees (106 reps)

Sunday, December 9, 2012

WOD 2012.12.09 - No accident

Rest day

Today is a rest day, and what an awesome rest day it has been! My caffeine today came only from green tea (no coffee for the first time in a while). I also resisted multiple urges to workout. My body needs the rest.

Accidental sin

At church today, we heard about how Adam and Eve sinned. One of the things that struck me was the progression of sin. For Eve, she saw, she wanted, and she took (in simple terms). James 1:14-15 says, "But each person is tempted when he is lured and enticed by his own desire. Then desire when it has conceived gives birth to sin, and sin when it is fully grown brings forth death."

In my own life, I find I don't so much "fall" into sin as I "walk" into sin. In sin, there are no accidents.

Accidental holiness

In the same way, there are no accidents in our pursuit of holiness. We don't just "stumble" into holiness. We need to toil and strive to be better each day. And to be never satisfied, since we are comparing ourselves to the holiness of Christ. Paul gives a good illustration with his own life in his letter to the Philippians. "Not that I have already obtained this or am already perfect, but I press on to make it my own, because Christ Jesus has made me his own. Brothers, I do not consider that I have made it my own. But one thing I do: forgetting what lies ahead and straining forward to what lies ahead, I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus. Let those of us who are mature think this way, and if in anything you think otherwise, God will reveal that also to you." --Philippians 3:12-15

WOD 2012.12.09 - Holy discontentment

"What If" by Nichole Nordeman (YouTube). A powerful song.

Team Workout at Harvest Bible Chapel (team blog). Quads sore. Those frog jumps. Haven't felt like this in a while.

Holy discontentment. Philippians 3:12-15. Pressing on to obtain the prize. Toiling and striving. Never satisfied. Comparing my life with the holiness of Christ. Falling short. Always. 

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

WOD 2012.12.04 - Abide

Spiritual WOD: Abide - John 15

v2 "Every branch in me that does not bear fruit he takes away, and every branch that does bear fruit he prunes, that it may bear more fruit."
  • Getting "pruned" isn't always fun, but I definitely need it so that I can bear more fruit.

v5 "I am the vine; you are the branches. Whoever abides in me and I in him, he it is that bears much fruit, for apart from me you can do nothing."
  • Abide. I need to be in Christ and let Him rule in me. The fruit of the Spirit -- love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, and self-control (Gal 5:22-23) -- is something I cannot produce of my own strength. I truly need Him. I am deficient, he is sufficient.

v7 "If you abide in me, and my words abide in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you."
  • "...and my words abide in you". Treasuring (and memorizing) His Word, which is of indescribable value. I long to long for more.

Physical WOD

Tue Dec 4

@ hotel - most awesome hotel gym I've seen so far!

4 x 8 @ 225 lbs
Clean complex
5 x (1 squat clean + 1 hang squat clean + 2 front squats) @ 135 lbs
*barbell harder to handle, and grip had to also resist torque, making for a cool workout

@ cfm

6 x 2 @ 345 lbs
WOD - FGB style (3 rounds for max total reps)
1 min burpees
1 min power snatch (75 lbs)
1 min wall balls (20 lbs / 10 ft)
1 min chest-to-bar pull-ups
1 min box jump (24")
1 min break
(Score: 208)

Mon Dec 3

5 km jog in Gananoque Trail (see photo in Instagram)

Sun Dec 2

200 push-ups not for time

Saturday, November 24, 2012

WOD 2012.11.24 - Favorite Sermon

Here is my favorite sermon, bar none.

"Therefore I tell you, do not be anxious about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink, nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not your life more than food, and the body more than clothing? Look at the birds of the air: they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they? And which of you by being anxious can add a single hour to his span of life? And why are you anxious about clothing? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin, yet I tell you, even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. But if God so clothes the grass of the field, which today is alive and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, will he not much more clothe you, O you of little faith? Therefore do not be anxious, saying 'What shall we eat?' or 'What shall we drink?' or 'What shall we wear?' For the Gentiles seek after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them all. But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you. 

Therefore do not be anxious about tomorrow, for tomorrow will be anxious for itself. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble."

--Matthew 6:25-34

Biblical Soul Care

Our church held a leadership workshop called Biblical Soul Care. We had 4 intense sessions packed into one day. There's so much to digest still. At the moment, I feel blessed, enriched and excited =)

7 a.m. outdoor WOD w/ The Repenters

On my way to church this morning, it was snowing. I was not looking forward to working out in the church parking lot. But I was super excited to see others (and their freezing faces).

Awesome music. Awesome friends. Awesome workout. #blessed

Tabata Circuit
1. Jump squats
2. Mountain climber push-ups
3. Jumping lunges
4. Sprints

Friday, November 23, 2012

WOD 2012.11.23 - Contentment

"Strength will rise as we wait upon the Lord"

Everlasting God, by Christ Tomlin

Content yet pressing on

These verses were shared from a friend in my men's group.

"You will seek me and find me, when you seek me with all your heart."
-- Jeremiah 29:13

"Delight yourself in the Lord; and He will give you the desires of your heart.  Commit your way to the Lord, trust also in Him, and He will do it.  Rest in the Lord and wait patiently for Him.  The steps of a man are established by the Lord, and He delights in his way.  When he falls, he will not be hurled headlong, because the Lord is the One who holds his hands.  Wait for the Lord and keep His way."
-- Psalm 37:4-5, 7, 23-24, 34

Learning to wait upon the Lord in all things, and that He alone is sufficient.

"Not that I have already obtained this or am already perfect, but I press on to make it my own, because Christ Jesus has made me his own."
-- Philippians 3:12

Content in this season of life. Pressing on to know Christ.


Rest Day. Wed and Thurs were also rest days. I blame the CrossFit Totals.

John Piper on the importance of taking care of our bodies.

Update: So, my rest day turned into a hangout at CFM for muscle-up work and 2 min AMRAPs ... which then turned into skill work on snatches, followed by a PR!

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

WOD 2012.11.20 - Courage

Thought for the day - Courage

What a powerful quote permeating every area of my life. Whether it is in the middle of a tough workout, or when I'm fighting for joy. "Quiet and steady dignity." What a perspective in midst of adversity!

6 a.m. WOD @ CFM

Thrusters (95 lbs)
Time: 5:45 (16 s PR)

7:30 p.m. WOD @ Outlaw North

2 min skipping
20 lunges
10 beat back
10 v-ups
10 pushups
2 min skipping

5 x 2 Back Squat @ 85% 1 RM
Warmup: 45#, 135#, 225#
5 x 2 @ 245# EMOM

For time:
200 m run
9 Power snatch (115#, 135# was rx)
200 m run
7 Power snatch
200 m run
5 Power snatch
200 m run

Monday, November 19, 2012

WOD 2012.11.19 - Forgiveness

This song is on repeat.


"No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord."
--Romans 8:37-39

Morning WOD @ random hotel in random city

Random exercises on cable machine

10 Rounds (not) for time:
Swim 1 length (~15 ft)
10 push-ups

Evening WOD @ CrossFit Markham

CrossFit Totals
1 RM Shoulder Press (145 lbs, PR!)
1 RM Deadlift (405 lbs, PR!)
1 RM Back Squat (285 lbs, PR!)

link to previous scores

Sunday, November 18, 2012

WOD 2012.11.18 - Discernment

Thought of the Day - Discernment

"Discernment is not knowing the difference between right and wrong. It is knowing the difference between right and almost right." -- C.H. Spurgeon

I need wisdom and discernment desperately. 

"Blessed is the one who finds wisdom,
and the one who gets understanding,
for the gain from her is better than gain from silver
and her profit better than gold.
She is more precious than jewels,
and nothing you desire can compare with her.
Long life is in her hand;
in her left hand are riches and honor.
Her ways are ways of pleasantness,
and all her paths are peace.
She is a tree of life to those who lay hold of her;
those who hold her fast are called blessed."
--Proverbs 3:13-20

Wisdom is invaluable. I would drive (/ run/ explore/ hike/ etc.) for hours just to get these precious jewels.


Rest Day. For real this time :)

Today, I'm thankful for forgiveness.

Saturday, November 17, 2012

WOD 2012.11.17 - One Passion

"Give me one pure and holy passion
Give me one magnificent obsession
Give me glorious ambition for my life
To know and follow hard after you"

One Passion: to know Jesus

"But whatever gain I had, I counted as loss for the sake of Christ. Indeed, I count everything as loss because of the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. For his sake I have suffered the loss of all things and count them as rubbish, in order that I may gain Christ and be found in him, not having a righteousness of my own that comes from the law, but that which comes through faith in Christ, the righteousness from God that depends on faith -- that I may know him and the power of his resurrection, and may share in his sufferings, becoming like him in his death, that by any means possible I may attain the resurrection from the dead." --Philippians 3:7-11

WOD w/ The Repenters @ HBCYR

For time:
25 jump squats
1 suicide
20 burpees
1 suicide
15 push-ups
1 suicide
10 knees-to-elbow (alternating standing crunches)
5 suicides
(Time: 4:48)


3 Rounds
5 strict pull-ups
10 tuck jumps
15 sit-ups

- then -

7 Rounds for Time:
12 thrusters (75 lbs)
9 toes-to-bar
250 m run
(Time: 19:08)

Thursday, November 15, 2012

WOD 2012.11.15 - Protect this house

Protect this house

"Above all else, guard your heart for it is the wellspring of life." Proverbs 4:23

Though of the day

Integrity. Aligning what you say with what you do. Now go get some!

WOD @ random hotel in random city


- then -

100 burpees for time
~ 1 min improvement from last year.


Chipper. ~20 mins. Not tough but tiring. Good to be back home :)

Monday, November 12, 2012

WOD 2012.11.12 - Healthy eating


Rest day

Then ... (haha yea, .... need to be better at rest) did this a few times in my hotel room.

Time: 3:31, 2:49, 2:21

Thought of the day - Healthy eating

I've been trying to eat healthy. Lots of greens. Cutting caffeine. No processed stuff. And so on. Travelling makes everything harder. Fast food is the norm. Entire pizzas become a regular dinner. No joke.

No, I didn't suddenly turn fat. But I can slowly feel it. Parts of my body only I notice slowly packing on small layers of fat.

Someone once said you are the sum of the small things you do. The little decisions each day.

I know I need to eat healthy. For my body, no question. It also helps my mind and soul when my body is well-nourished.

I find that eating healthy one of the easier disciplines. It's harder to always choose "healthy foods" for the heart, mind and soul. It's easy to fill it with junk or shallow things. However, it's the deeper things that are more nourishing and eternal.

Sunday, November 11, 2012

WOD 2012.11.11 - Angst

Physical WOD

7:15 a.m. in random driveway (post devos)

For time:
KB Swings (55#)
DB Thrusters (25# DB's)
(Time - 9:49)

1:30 p.m. in the same random driveway (Rak Chazak)

20 min AMRAP (Team WOD)
30 double unders

Spiritual WOD

6 a.m. in house of random driveway

Proverbs 11
Psalm 63
Philippians 3:1-9

11 a.m. @ Harvest Bible Chapel in random city

Excited! =)
So, today, the pastor preached a message from Galatians 4:12-20 on "Directions, Detours and Destinations" from the series "Grace Filled Living". In short, our direction should be a gospel-centred freedom -- to pursue Christ, and not spend too much time in less important things.  We should avoid detours, or temptations that lead us astray. And our destination? For Christ to be formed in us. Are we thirsting for God more? Are we growing in love? Do we grieve over sin? Are we quick to forgive? Do we delight in the body of Christ? Sensitive to His prsence? Yearn for Christ? I know Christ is being formed in me, though the process is far from done. Exciting =)
Thought for the Day - Angst

Angst. Men of old had this angst, a deep feeling of fear or anxiety. An angst to know God more. I want this to be true for me:
"Yes, everthing else is worthless when compared with the priceless gain of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. I have discarded everything else, counting it all as garbage, so that I may have Christ and become one with him. I no longer count on my own goodness or my ability to obey God's law, but I trust Christ to save me. For God's way of making us right with himself depends on faith." (Philippians 3:8-9, NLT)

WOD 2012.11.10 - Funerals

Physical WOD

7 a.m. @ HBCYR w/ The Repenters

20 mins
(1 suicide in between each set of burpees)

Score: 36/40, 176 burpees (prev score: 40/40, 180 burpees)

The weather was a bit chillier than 4 weeks ago, and the ground was especially cold. Nevertheless, we were blessed with wonderful weather.

Spiritual WOD

Victor then shared from James 1:22-25 about being more than just hearers of the word. We often forget who we are and get caught up in the day-to-day routine. I know sometimes I get convicted to change my diet or lifestyle after hearing a talk, then the next day, any remaining conviction vaporized.

Thought of the Day - Funerals

Yesterday (Nov 10) was my grandmother's funeral. She was one of the most beautiful women I've ever known and loved God so much.

During the funeral, there were two conflicting emotions. An emotion of intense sadness and loss. And an emotion of inexpressible joy that my grandmother is now with Jesus. While I mainly tried to keep an eternal perspective during the ceremony, I wonder if I can do this when someone closer to me passes on.

For the Christian, funerals are a celebration of someone's life, a time to grieve, and a time to rejoice. Strange, huh?

Friday, November 9, 2012

WOD 2012.11.09 - Knowing Christ

Workout of the Day - 6 p.m. @ CFM

Back squat
Warm-up: 2 x 45#, 2 x 135#, 2x185#, 2x225#
Working set: 8 x 2 x 255#

- then -

Skill work: Muscle-up progressions and dips

Thought for the day - Knowing Christ

"Indeed, I count everything as loss because of the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord." - Philippians 3:8a

Paul counted everything as loss. Everything. All the things he worked so hard for his entire life.

For me, "everything" would include my career, family, friends, church and CrossFit. This would also include all the "good" I've done in my life. All of it. Rubbish. Not bad in and of themselves. But compared to the surpassing worth of knowing Him.

What does it mean to know Christ? It's beyond just getting through the day with a checklist of tasks (do devotions, eat, work, workout, pray, go to church). Rather, the "tasks" we engage in should center around knowing Him more.

And if I engage in a task that takes away my affection for Christ? Even if that task is not sinful in and of itself? If knowing and being known by Him is my goal, I should strip away all that so easily hinders so that I can run the race set before me (Hebrews 12:1-3).

(reflections based on Matt Chandler's sermon "Christianity Made Simple" during Young Adults @ HBCYR)

Thursday, November 8, 2012

WOD 2012.11.08

9 a.m. @ Caveman Strong

Overhead squats (3 reps, pause at bottom)
45#, 65#, 85#, 105#, 115#, 125#, 135#, 135# (failed)
(Wrists were starting to hurt... need to work on these more)

- then -

For time:
Row 800 m
50 KB swings (eye-level, used 2 pood)
Row 400 m
(Time: 6:56)

- then -

12 mins of ...
3 strict pull-ups
3 pistols (3 each leg)
(Weakness: pull-ups for sure!)

12 p.m. @ Seaway Valley CrossFit

3 rounds of...
10 different exercises for 30 s each
5 mins / round; 1 min rest in between

6 p.m. @ CrossFit Markham

Skill work: HSPU

- then -

5 rounds for time:
10 hang power clean and push jerk (135#)
1 rope climb (legless... only did this for the first round)
(~30 mins... pretty heavy, though my body was probably weary from the travel, poor sleep / nutrition and the other work puts earlier in the day. Still a fun workout)

- then -

Off to Harvest Bible Chapel for Young Adults :) Matt Chandler preached from Philippians 3:1-9. CrAzy stuff!

Monday, November 5, 2012

WOD 2012.11.05

Yes, I missed my last class. And yes, it was due to work. But! The silver lining is .... I made it back home in time for the last CrossFit class. Sanity restored. I should be ready for the long drive tonight.

Here's what went down:

Clean and jerk
1 x 135 lbs, 1 x 155 lbs, 1 x 185 lbs (not clean, but a PR)
1 x 135 lbs, 1 x 155 lbs, 1 x 175 lbs

- Then -

3 x 225 lbs, 3 x 245 lbs, 3 x 250 lbs, 3 x 255 lbs, 3 x 245 lbs
3 x 245 lbs, 3 x 245 lbs, 3 x 245 lbs, 3 x 245 lbs, 3 x 245 lbs

While my legs will probably be a bit sore, at least I got my squat fix for the week.  The massive veggie shake (~50 g protein) should help too.

Friday, November 2, 2012

For those midnight drives

You are oxygen, on a late night drive, to clear my head when hope has passed me by ...

WOD (2012.02.11)

Shoulder Press
5 x 65 lbs, 5 x 95 lbs, 5 x 105 lbs, 5 x 115 lbs

Push Press
3 x 125 lbs, 3 x 135 lbs, 3 x 135 lbs

12 min AMRAP
3 squat cleans
9 thrusters
(95 lbs barbell. 7 rounds)

Thursday, November 1, 2012

10,000 Reasons

I don't quite have 10,000 reasons to bless the Lord, but I definitely have quite a few!

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Surviving long commutes

My commute to work is generally 1-1.5 hours. Sometimes longer (~2 hrs) when there are accidents or snow storms. Sometimes shorter (~40 mins) when I leave at 4 a.m. in the morning.
I took the 407 this week for the first time. It was as if I left at 4 a.m. with an extra two hours of sleep! After resisting for a year, I finally caved. My commute has been, dare I say, enjoyable! 

I also travel for work, driving for several hours at a time. After doing a hard workout, the last thing you want to be doing is sitting still for that long. Even if you didn't workout, sitting for long stretches at a time is not good for you.
I picked up a pair of Skins (compression gear) for my CrossFit workouts. I use these on occasion when I know my legs might die. I've recently started wearing them on long drives and for long days at work on the field. Incredible.
The last but most important part of my commute has been the time I've had in relationships. I get to talk to coworkers I drive, to a friend I carpool with, and most importantly, to my God.

I recently picked up a cable to connect my music player to my car's stereo system. I've been able to listen to music from the Vertical Church Band. I've been incredibly encouraged. During these long but precious commutes, I get the opportunity to worship my God and talk to the one who gave His life for me.

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

WOD Oct 29-30


Snatch: skill work and work on 1 RM
(PR: 145 lbs)

3 Rounds for Time
10 deadlifts (275 lbs)
50 double unders
(Time: ~10 mins)


Front squat (work towards a 5 RM)
5 x 135 lbs, 5 x 185 lbs, 5 x 195 lbs
5 x 205 lbs, 5 x 215 lbs, 2 x 225 lbs
(5 rep max: 215 lbs)

Skill work: HSPU, snatch

Saturday, October 27, 2012

WOD Oct 22-29


Rest Day

@ CrossFit Markham


1. Burpees / Rowing
2. Jump squat: With 45 lbs bar / without bar
3. Competition style push-ups / Russian twists (35 lbs)
4. Tuck jumps / knees to elbows
5. Ring rows / V-ups

8 rounds each, alternating between exercises
e.g. Round 1: 20 s burpee, 10 s rest; Round 2: 20 s row, 10 s rest; Round 3: 20 s burpee, etc...

PR - Got my first bar muscle-up!

@ HBCYR w/ The Repenters


1. Jump squats
2. Mountain climber push-ups
3. Jumping lunges
4. Sprints

Friday @ Western Pines w/ Jireh

3 Rounds (max reps)
1 min HSPU
1 min burpee thrusters (25 lbs dumbbells)
1 min KB snatch (55 lbs)
1 min break


Rest day

Wednesday @ CF Sarnia

Squat snatch: 5 x 2 @ 95 lbs
(1 rep = squat snatch from mid thigh + one from floor)
Drop snatch: 2 x 65 lbs, 2 x 85 lbs, 2 x 95 lbs, 2 x 95 lbs, 2 x 95 lbs
Snatch pulls: 5 x 2 @ 135 lbs

Tuesday @ Fit 4 Less w/ Joe 

Leg press: 3 x 10
Front squat: 5 x 5
Deadlift: 5 x 5

- Then -

7 min burpees (jumping on a 45 lbs plate)

Monday @ CF Sarnia

Push jerk
2 x 95 lbs, 2 x 115 lbs, 2 x 135 lbs, 2 x 155 lbs, 2 x 165 (singles)

- Then -

2 Rounds
20 Thrusters (115 lbs)
20 L-pull-ups (only did the first 10 as L-pull-ups; remaining were kipping)

5 min rest

2 rounds (only finished 1 round)
750 row

Thursday, October 11, 2012

WOD 2012.10.11

CFM @ 7 p.m.

Skill warm-up
3 rounds not for time
5 wall climbs
10 overhead squats (45#)
(wall climbs get tiring!)

For time:
70 burpees
60 sit-ups
50 kettlebell swings (55 lbs)
40 wall balls (20 lbs)
500 m run
(Time: 15:06)

Back squat
5 x 185 lbs, 5 x 205 lbs
5 x 5 x 225 lbs

Thrive Diet - Day 3 Reflections

Today, I didn't even have a cup of Teecino! I kept reusing my teabag from Starbucks this morning (Vanilla Roobios tea). Having lots of fruit on hand helps a lot with the coffee cravings. I also bought lunch at the cafe since they made curry. I had the vegetarian curry, and opted not to have the tandoori chicken (I know .. typing this pains me).

Shortly after lunch, I went for a swim. I know - maybe it wasn't the wisest idea. Nevertheless, I felt great after the swim. Lunch workouts do a great job at resetting my day. I came back recharged and ready to work some more.

One thing I noticed is that I'm a lot more regular. I also have higher overall energy levels. We'll see if I can get stronger on my CrossFit Totals from this vegan diet. As I'm typing, I'm eating my post-workout dinner of brown rice and vegetables =)

Excited for family devotions tonight! Romans 5 =) One of my favorite passages is Romans 5:1-8. Check it out!

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

WOD 2012.10.10

Paleo Challenge Part II: A Date with Fran

Today's workout was Fran: 21-15-9 of thrusters (95#) and pull-ups. I almost tied my previous score with 6:02 (missed it by a second!).

Going in, I decided to pace myself. From what I recall before, I would go hard on the thrusters, and then die. I made sure to keep a consistent pace and breathe. Here was how I broke it down (the latter part not by choice!):

21 thrusters: unbroken
21 pull-ups: 11-10
15 thrusters: 7-8
15 pull-ups: 5-5-5
9 thrusters: 6-3
9 pull-ups: 7-2

As relaxed as I looked (that's what my coach said), I was in pain, lungs burning, and forearms numb. To improve, I need stronger squats, better pull-ups / grip, and improve cardio capacity. My goal for the re-test is to maintain the same pace but to go through all movements unbroken.

Thrive Diet - Day 2 Reflections

Breakfast was a Vega One shake along with some warm soup (cauliflower / ginger) courtesy of my mom :) I ate my lunch (quinoa, eggplant, cauliflower) the moment I got to work. And then, I pretty much ate every hour on the hour! A pear at 10 a.m., a banana at 11 a.m., leftover salad / hemp protein shake at 12 p.m., some lentil soup shortly after, an orange at 1 p.m., ... and a 2 hour gap! ... before an avocado. On the way home, I ended up eating an apple. I snacked on some quinoa before CrossFit and had a protein shake after (some combination of hemp, pea and cranberry proteins). And I only had one cup of herbal coffee and it was oh so good! Staying coffee- and meat-free so far :)

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

WOD 2012.09.10

Paleo Challenge - CrossFit Totals

Today marks Day 1 of the "Paleo" Challenge. For this challenge, my partner and I are doing the Thrive Diet and doing the benchmark tests before and after this 6-week challenge. Here are my scores (1 rep max):

Back squat: 255 lbs
Shoulder press: 125 lbs
Deadlift: 365 lbs

Here is a link to my previous scores. 

Thrive Diet - Day 1 Reflections

No coffee. No meat. Those would have to be the toughest things. Yet here I am, 9 p.m., and have been caffeine-free :) I had some help from Teecino, an herbal coffee, for the 2 p.m. energy drop.

It's hard to stay full on a vegan diet. Or rather, I need to get used to a different kind of fullness. I'm used to the wonderful bloated feeling of eating a good slice of meat. I got really hungry in the afternoon and grabbed a Larabar. I wanted to eat another, but then forced myself to wait.

Dinner, after CrossFit as usual, was delicious, compliments of my mom :) I think I could get used to this diet ... for the next 6 weeks. Just need to avoid any positive thoughts of meat and coffee.

"I don't like eating meat. I'm not interested in drinking coffee. Repeat."

Monday, October 8, 2012

WOD 2012.10.08

Rest Day

Energy Management

Yes, it's yet another rest day. This is - in part - to make up for the missed rest day last Thursday. The main reason, however, is energy management.

I have a fixed amount of energy and need to choose my activities wisely. I will not do a hard workout if I have a tough work week ahead and am still sick. I will work on more creative activities in the morning, and more mechanical tasks later in the afternoon. Energy management is about knowing when and how to pace,  when to go hard, and when to say no.

"Paleo" Challenge

Our gym is holding a 6-week Paleo Challenge. The Paleo diet is based on foods available to cavemen during the Paleolithic Era (meat, vegetables, fruits, nuts and seeds). The Paleo Challenge will be done in teams of 2 with prizes given to teams with overall improvement in fitness, measured by body fat % loss, improvement in strength, and improvement in cardiovascular fitness.

My partner and I did this challenge last time following the Paleo diet as best as possible. This time, we signed up for the Challenge, except we will be following a vegan diet based of Brendan Brazier's Thrive Diet. The idea behind this diet is to keep your body alkaline to improve recovery. If you recover faster, you can train harder.

I expect to lose a bit of muscle, though I'm hoping not too much since one of my goals is to get a lot stronger. I stocked up on some vegan protein, so we'll see how that goes.

One of the other things I hope to get from the Thrive Diet is overall increase in energy. This will be interesting since I will be avoiding caffeine during this 6-week period (not even green tea). Let the games begin!

Sunday, October 7, 2012

WOD 2012.07.10

Sunday, October 7, 2012

Rest Day

9 a.m. @ HBCYR
"Good News", Romans 1:8-17
Expressing Thanksgiving (v. 8-10)
Filled with passion (v. 11-13)
Under obligation (v. 14)
Bold for the Gospel (v. 15-17)

Saturday, October 6, 2012

11 a.m. @ CFM w/ Victor

3 Rounds for Time
Run 800 m
20 Box Jumps (20")
20 SDHP (75 lbs)

Friday, October 5, 2012

6 p.m. @ CFM

Shoulder Press
3 x 95 lbs, 3 x 115 lbs, 3 x 95 lbs, 3 x 95 lbs, 6 x 95 lbs

Double unders
(I forgot my time, but sit-ups were definitely a limiting factor. My double-unders are getting better)

8 p.m. @ Home - with Victor, a good friend of mine :)

20 min AMRAP
10 DB snatch each arm (30 lbs)
20 SDHP (75 lbs KB)
30 Squat jumps

Thursday, October 4, 2012

WOD 2012.10.04

Rest Day

"Be watchful, stand firm in the faith, act like men, be strong. Let all that you do be done in love."

1 Corinthians 16:13-14


Update: "Rest Day" ended up looking like this

1 RM clean (got up to 185 lbs, failed at 205 lbs)

- Then -

3 Rounds for Time
12 OHS @ 95 lbs
21 Push-ups
400 m run
(Time: 15 mins)
Push-ups definitely the limiting factor.

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

WOD 2012.03.10

2012-10-03 @ CFM

Skill warm-up
3 Rounds
10 pistol squats (each leg)
10 strict pull-ups

7 mins
1 Hang Power Clean @ 145 lbs
1 Toe-to-bar
2-2, 3-3, ...(got up to 7 rounds)

15 mins to accumulate up to 5 min L-sit (rings)
(got a bit over 3 mins)

2012-10-02 @ CFM

1 mile run
GHD sit-ups / raises
4 x 9 squats @ 135 lbs

3 Power Snatch EMOM for 10 min @ 95 lbs
(did a few at 105 lbs, but poor form)

2 muscle-ups (scaled to 6 dips)
4 HSPU (kipping)
8 KB swings @ 72 lbs
(~5 rounds? wasn't keeping count)

Then .... got my first post-pneumonia muscle-up!

Sunday, September 23, 2012

WOD 2012.09.23

7 a.m. @ Home

Row 500 m

1. Row 4 x 500 

Titus: 1:57.2, 2:00.4, 1:59.3, 1:55.9
Josh: 2:01.2, 1:42.2, 1:48.7, 1:44.8 
Definitely slacked on the first round. Thanks Titus for the push! And congrats on the PR on that last set!
2. Tabata 
(8 rounds / exercise; 20 s on / 10 s off; 1 min break between exercises)

Squat Jumps

Titus: 45 (push-ups), 24 (burpees), 50 (squat jumps)
Josh: 55 (push-ups), 42 (burpees), 109 (squat jumps)

Sunday, September 2, 2012

Sight vs. Vision

Today at HBCYR, our pastor preached from 2 Kings 6:8-23. The story talks about the faith of 4 different people: Elisha, the prophet; Ben-Hadad, the King of Syria; Jehoram, the King of Israel; and Elisha's servant.

At one point, the Syrian army was sent to Dothan to capture Elisha. Upon seeing the army coming, Elisha's servant was afraid. Elisha's response? "Then Elisha prayed" (v. 17)

Prayer is often the last thing that comes to mind when I face adversity. I think it's because I lack vision. It is easy for me to be short-sighted, seeing the immediate and losing eternal perspective.

When Elisha prayed, his servant's eyes were opened to see an army full of horses and chariots of fire. When I saw "chariots of fire", a strong desire to run swelled within me. My run later in the evening was short-lived but good. It wasn't much. It wasn't fast. But it was something.

Our pastor also said something about conviction: "with clarity comes conviction". This reminded me of a talk I heard the other day on the radio. The pastor was talking about belief vs. conviction. What you say you believe is intellectual. What you really believe is conviction. How you act under pressure is conviction. I could believe that sex outside of marriage is wrong. But how would I act when tempted and under pressure?

For a long time, I've been complacent about my lack of vision. I've been wavering in my beliefs. Within me is a strong desire to develop clarity of vision and unwavering conviction. I can't be indifferent anymore. This is war (Ephesians 6:12). Rak Chazak!

Saturday, September 1, 2012

WOD 2012.09.01

CrossFit Markham @ 11 a.m.

First WOD in a month. Thanks pneumonia for the month off :) 
"Little Evil" 
3 Rounds 
Run 800 m 
30 Pull-ups 
30 Burpees 
Time: 43:03 ... I finished :)
The time off CrossFit has been good. I really like CrossFit and would spend a lot of after work at the gym. My last CrossFit workout was August 1st. While I was initially disheartened by this forced rest, I've found a new kind of energy. It's that kind of energy when you awaken to a deeper realization of purpose and meaning. With CrossFit temporarily gone, I've been able to focus on my spiritual growth and on honoring  God at work. CrossFit used to consume a big part of my life and would eat into those other areas. As I continue to recover, I look forward to giving God glory in my everything.
"for while bodily training is of some value, godliness is of value in every way, as it holds promise for the present life and also for the life to come." 
1 Timothy 4:8

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

WOD 2012.08.01

CrossFit Markham @ 7 p.m.

135 lbs x 5, 225 lbs x 5, 275 lbs x 5
325 lbs x 3 x (3 sets)

4 Rounds for Time
400 m run
10 hang power cleans
15 toes to bar
(25 min time cap, DNF - just finished the last 400 m run)

Technically, I shouldn't be working out with bronchitis. I should be in my bed and recovering. Nevertheless, I was itching to workout. My intensity was kept low enough so that I did not require much breathing (or else I would start coughing uncontrollably). The meds haven't kicked in yet, but I'm drinking honey lemon tea right now. While I also took some cough suppressants, I should stop taking those, since it's been over a week now (i.e. more than the 5 day maximum). I definitely have a new appreciation for the ability to breathe, especially during a workout :)


Yosemite HD from Project Yosemite on Vimeo.

Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Transportation is cool :)

I went to school for transportation and currently work in the field. If you're thinking about pursuing a career in transportation, or want to know more about the field, here's a cool video I found that shows why I enjoy working in transportation.

Food for thought

I seem to make the same mistakes again and again, especially when it comes to food.

Breakfast this morning was 3 eggs and some fruit. So far so good.

I got into work, downed a coffee and bought a banana muffin. I didn't really need the muffin, but enjoyed it anyways (a little oily though).

I had little to eat after and lots to do. I find I'm more productive in a semi-fasted state. Then .... lunch came. I ate my lunch I brought from home. So far so good. Then a couple hours later I bought lunch from the caf: stuffed turkey breast, potatoes, vegetables, bread pudding, and pop.

Two big mistakes:
- The second lunch: I definitely didn't need the extra calories.
- The processed sugar (bread pudding and pop): Big sugar spike = huge drop in mental clarity.

Small goals:
- Eat less, and skip meals / low-cal snacking--especially when I'm just sitting at the desk all day
- Avoid processed food: let's start with the pop, juice, and desserts (noooo!)

Monday, July 30, 2012

Not Afraid

Reflections on Research
Last .... last week, I took part in a research conference. It reminded me of how much I enjoyed academia; and gave me a refreshing perspective on the challenges of modelling travel behaviour. I had the week "off", which meant that I bounced between work and the conference, enjoying the best of both worlds. The only downside is the lack of sleep leading to my trip to Montreal that weekend, with the dragonboat team.

Dragonboat @ Montreal

Montreal was a lot of fun! Smoked meat, camraderie, the excitement of dragonboating, and good laughs. And I had a chance to experience some of Montreal's exciting night life. I even entertained the thought of moving there. Even scarier, I even thought about paddling in the upcoming year. I know, crazy, eh?

Battling Bronchitis
The past week I've been fighting a cough. It would hinder my running, and any other physical activity. I thought I just had a bad cough, so I got some cold/flu meds and got plenty of sleep. A week later, the cough persisted. I later learned that I should stop taking the cold/flu meds after 3-5 days if the cough doesn't stop, because chances are, I have a bacterial infection. Turns out I have bronchitis and got amoxicillin, a semi-synthetic antibiotic. Good thing I went to the doctor. If I kept taking the cold/flu meds, there would be a chance of developing pneumonia. Sometimes, coughs shouldn't be suppressed, especially if it's productive (i.e. getting rid of bad stuff).

WOD - Not Afraid
The idea of being "not afraid" permeates every part of my life. I am often afraid to try, to speak up, to give my best, being afraid to fail. I need to be not afraid to go there

Hang clean & split jerk
135 lbs x 2 (5 sets)
165 lbs x 2 (failed first attempt, completed last set of 2)

185 lbs x 5
225 lbs x 5 (3 sets)
-- 225 lbs was a "need to go there" weight for me. I didn't want to squat 225 lbs, but I knew I had to. Squats I never fun before, but feel so good after. 

Random Fun :)
- Handstands
- Kipping pull-ups (max reps: 17 ... goal was 20 by the end of March 2012 ... just a little behind)

Monday, July 16, 2012

WOD 2012.07.16

Sunday Reflections

This past Sunday, our pastor preached from Psalm 119:121-128. Here are a few things that stood out to me:

1. The weight of God's promises--you can take it to the bank
2. His mercies are new every morning
3. You know how well you are doing as a servant when you are treated like one--boom
4. We need to love His Word, and hate sin--the reverse seems easier


I gave a presentation today at a conference in Toronto. While the presentation generally went well, I know I definitely need to work on public speaking--Toastmasters?


I wasn't able to complete the entire workout, and ended up doing some random stuff. As I was hanging in the gym, it suddenly hit me that I have an attitude problem--yes, took long enough, I know. This arrogance. Sense of entitlement. Quick temper. Things that irritate me when I see in others. Painfully obvious in my life. I need to replace these with humility, patience, and perseverance.

4 x 3 Hang Squat Snatch @ 105 lbs (and some lighter working sets, and some failed sets)

"(power) Elizabeth"
Power cleans @ 135 lbs
Ring dips

I wasn't planning on doing this, but I saw Chris do this in around 3 mins. So I figured I'd give it a try. 20+ mins later .... yea. Weak, I know. But now I'm less weak.

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Your Great Name

This song speaks of the greatness of God's name, and how His name alone has great power. As I was listening to this song on my way to work, I thought about why I still do the things I should stop, and why I don't do the things I should do. Just thinking about the greatness of God's name seemed to bring clarity to all this ... even if just for a temporary moment in time.

Sunday, July 1, 2012

Spartan Beast Ottawa

Adventure in Lac Ste-Marie

How did you celebrate the Canada Day long weekend? My brothers and I decided to go skiing at Mont Ste-Marie ... without skis. More precisely, we spent our Saturday climbing up and down ski hills as part of the Spartan Beast Ottawa, which was in Lac Ste-Marie, about an hour north of Ottawa.

Pre-Race Excitement
As we finished checking in, we arrived on the patio of the chalet and were greeted by epic music, among them being the song by Vangelis, "1492: Conquest of Paradise", which we thought was super epic because of this clip.

We were just minutes from the start, excited and nervous about this run. While the race was advertised as a 20 km course, the announcer surprised us by informing us the course was at least 25 km.

My brothers look ahead, undaunted by the hill. Little did we know that we would climb all the way to the top ... and back down ... 6 times. And the top wasn't even in sight. Nevertheless, we were energetic and excited.

The First Hill
We finally made our way to the very top. We heard we'd have to do this "only" 3 times from one of the participants. However, this is us, about to head down, and just finding out that we'd have to do this 5 more times. Oh ... and you can't see the bottom of the hill in this photo--that's just partway down.

Before heading down, we had our photo taken by a fellow Spartan.

Fellow Spartans
After our 2nd ... or 3rd hill (we started to lose count), we found ourselves in a seemingly endless trail. We came across a 7-time Spartan finisher. We would end up pushing each other for much of the race.

Last Hill
This last hill definitely came as a surprise to us. When we found out we had to climb this last hill, we were shocked. We thought we finished all the big hills (according to a medic on the course). At least it wouldn't be as bad as the beginning, we were told. Well, here we are, gazing at the breathtaking scenery, with our breaths taken away by the grueling climb. Even though we thought we would be at the top, we soon discovered this was only halfway. Sometimes, looking back on how far you've come helps you press forward to finish what you've started.

Post-Race Dinner
The race took us a little over 8 hours. We were among the last finishers, but we finished! The volunteers were packing up, and the sun was setting. We had little interest in post-race photos and celebrations. We wanted to get back to Ottawa to meet up with the rest of the crew. So here we are, hanging with a friend who lives in Ottawa, eating to our heart's content!

Slow Fade

I heard this song on the radio and it definitely struck a chord within me. Small decisions made over the course of time can lead to seemingly unthinkable results. The song talks about how little choices, such as a fleeting glance or lustful thought, snowballed into relational disaster. "People never crumble in a day. Daddys never crumble in a day. Families never crumble in a day." As disheartening as this may be, there is hope in this truth: seemingly insurmountable obstacles can be overcome by making small choices in the same direction over a long period of time. So even if you someone who's crumbled through making poor decisions, you can also rebuild ... one brick at a time.

Sunday, June 24, 2012

This is Sparta!

My first Spartan Race!

Today was my first Spartan Race. I did the "Sprint" (5-7 km, ours was 7 km) with a few friends from CrossFit Markham. Next week is the "Beast" (~20 km) in Ottawa. In the meantime, here are some highlights:

Spartan Race - Post Race Photo

5-7 km run. 15 obstacles. Pure awesomeness. This was definitely a good prep for next week (knowing what to pack and what to expect). Still ... to think that we'll be doing this course 3-4 times .... blows my mind! I'm really excited for this Saturday! 
Post Race Dinner :)
After the race, we went to this awesome restaurant in Midland called MAD Mike's. It's a barbeque place where they make everything from scratch. I got a grass-fed bison burger, with an incredible homemade mustard, and sweet potato bun :) Definitely good times with awesome friends!

Saturday, June 23, 2012

CF Warm-up + Potluck food :)

6 p.m. @ CrossFit Markham

Today is a day of celebration! It's the first time I did the full CFM warm-up. One day, I'll say, "Your workout is my warm-up". But for now, I got owned by the warm-up. Anyways, here's what I did today:

3 minutes skipping
10 arm circles
20 pass through's with PVC pipe
stretches (groin, hamstring, hip flexor, etc)
- Then -
3 Rounds of
15 Overhead Squats (PVC pipe)
15 Sit-ups
15 Push-ups
15 Pull-ups (kipping)

Warm-up, then 5 x 5 @ 145 lbs

Reps: 10-20-30-40
Box jumps
Walking lunges (each leg)
400 m run
Time: 17:10, including idle time, thinking I was done after the 40 walking lunges :P

Post-WOD fun
Did some random rope climbs and HSPU. Got a new PR: 8 strict HSPU! My arms were so tired.

Potluck Prep

Tomorrow, we'll be racing at Toronto Island Dragon Boat Festival (we = Iron Dragons). As per tradition, we have a potluck. I decided to make "on-sale-meat awesome". Here are some snap shots =)

My share after slicing the beef :)

Beef diced, seasoned with jerk, and cooked. Unleash the pineapple!

Jerk beef + Pineapple = "on-sale meat awesome"

The final product for tomorrow potluck!
(Leftovers ... excellent!)