Content-type: text/html Ray Manning

Monday, April 28, 2008 10:00 PM

Long Beach Grand Prix Weekend


On Tuesday I try to be productive at work before heading over to Raytheon to pick up my badge over there and attend a meeting. When I get home I lift weights for the first time in 9 days with light weight and high repetitions. It feels so good to lift again. And then I notice how

Wednesday is another bicycle commute. Note that during the bicycle commute it's a 16 mile ride to work with a single pannier full of clothes and towel followed by a 16 mile ride home with a single pannier full of clothes and a towel. Usually the ride home has a tailwind and today is no exception. After a shower I drive on down to the Library Coffeehouse to read (undistracted).

Thursday starts with the aquarium ride and a short detour due to final road closures and preparations for the Long Beach Grand Prix. During today's ride I can see where the legs are getting stronger from the bicycle commuting, but today the entire organism is a bit tired. The errands start with a haircut, buying 4 carnation plants, and trying to find new motorcycle gloves. After lunch I mow the lawn, trim the roses, and plant the 4 new carnations to go with the existing 4. By 3:30 pm I am tired and I get down for an hour nap. When I wake up itt akes me a while to get my bearings. The Thursday concludes with a good light weight, high repetition workout with the weights. Late on Thursday Person M_Fl comes over after work and we hang out for a while. He shows me his birthday tattoo of his birthdate in the form of a barcode. Though I don't like tattoos at all, this one is kind of okay (between his shoulder blades where very few people will see it).

On Friday I head north on the Los Angeles river bicycle trail for the morning ride. I can tell that the legs are going to be strong, but right now I am just so whipped and beaten. I'm slow today and I struggle along, but I'm glad to be home and be able to relax. When I get a chance I look through my records and find that I have not had a day off from working out since the middle of January - no wonder I am whipped. Well, one of these days I'll take off. There isn't much to be said for the rest of Friday except for doing laundry and working the abdominals - I am whipped and just do a bit of reading.

On Saturday I take the train to downtwon Long Beach for the we wander around for the practice and qualifying sessions. This is the last Champ Car World Series race ever. Maybe that is the reason that I don't quite "get into" the day's events as I normally would. But I'm happy when Justin "The Flying Giraffe" Wilson gets the pole for Sunday's race.

I get home and have dinner and then get in another highh repetition workout with the weights. I'm enjoying these workouts because it puts a longer time duration load on the muscles, I get a good pump from them, and there is less stress on the soft connective tissue. After the workout the telephone starts ringing. Person T_U wants me to go to a concert but I have to decline because I'm tired (from walking in the sun all day at the Grand Prix). Person DD_V calls and comes over and brings a Thai DVD that we watch. Well, we don't finish the DVD, so Person DD_V will burn me a copy for later viewing. When Person DD_V leaves near 11 pm, Person JC_T calls. I met Person JC_T at last Sunday's Songkran festival. We have a long conversation and it isn't until midnight that I'm off the phone and into bed for sleep.

On Sunday I stay in bed late and just enjoy having no committments or timetable for the day. I eventually get on the road bicycle and head north on the Los Angeles river trail. (The real Los Angeles river trail and not the Rio Hondo trail.) I ride along until the trail ends and turn around and come home. Today the farther I ride the less kinks, knots, and stiffness I have in any bodyparts. The same kinks, knots, and stiffness that almost caused me not to ride today. So it feels good to finish up the approximately 25 mile ride today.

I send the day doing some programming for work, reading, cleaning up and feeding the roses, and watching the Long Beach Grand Prix. It's time to go back to work.

Monday is a good day. I'm very productive at work, have a great high repetition workout after work (with an extra set of each exercise), and a 50 minute walk. Today is the day to get back to the healthy eating and I have very very little fat today.

On Tuesday I eat healthy, have a productive day at Northrop Grumman, work the abdominals (hard) when I get home, and then walk for 50 minutes. There's a film that I recorded a month ago called Never Die Alone that I fiannly watch and enjoy. It has plot twists, is gritty, and takes place in a nasty part of down Los Angeles.

Wednesday starts with a phonecall from the Northrop Grumman vice president at 6:12 in the morning. Panic time! The next three days are in a state of panic as we try to fix up the vice president's request and acocmodate the request (even though this is the same work that was denied funding earlier). As well as the work panic I manage to get in some good workouts, some long walks, and eat healthy. Though I wimp out on bicycle commuting twice during the week.

Saturday starts with the (almost) 27 mile loop ride. By one third distance I am out of muscle glycogen but I soldier on and I'm a bit surprised when the total time for the ride is a typical time. I then do the laundry and some grocery shopping (without re-loading the glycogen) and I am ready to collapse when I get home. So I sit back with a Subway sandwich, baked chips, and a diet Coke and qualifying from Barcelone, Spain for F1. When Fernando Alonso takes the pole in the closing minutes of the qualifying session I jump off the couch and give big yell - Oops, I hope I didn't startle the neighbors. But the joy is short-lived as the Kimster beats him a few seconds later with a time 81 thousands of a second faster. But it's great to see the Spaniard Alonso in a resurgent Renault in front of 200,000 Spanish fans do well! The rest of Saturday is blah because I'm still down on muscle glycogen and it's hot out. But I do trim, feed, and water the roses for more wild growth.

On Sunday morning I do the aquarium ride plus a little bit. And then I sit with 130,000 screaming Spaniards for the F1 race from Barcelona. The Spanish hero actually runs off the track and into the grass during the sighting lap and almsot hits the wall! I know this is going to be an eventfull race. I'm on my feet with the 130,000 fans at the start with the spine tingling! I love this! But by mid distance, with Alonso having performed better than expected, he's out due to a blown engine. You can see the fans making for the exit because if their hero is not going to win, then they don't care. At the end I wonder of any of the podium winners will spray King Juan Carlos with champagne, but they don't. I eventually get out for a 50 minute walk to the end the weekend.

The final tally for the weekend is car miles:5, motorcycle miles: 0, bicycle miles: 47, and walking miles: 4.

On Monday I'm stressed out from a vendor's lack of diligence. When I get home I have a great workout with the weights as I very slowly start to lift the overall weights but keep the repetitions high. Afterwards I trim a tree and then realize that a couple of large branches have broken off during recent winds and will take a few weeks of work to clean up and remove. When I'm tired I watch Sunday's recorded "Desperate Housewives" and enjoy it because it prominently features a golden retriever as a seeing eye dog. And then, because I need the spine tingles again, I go back and watch the sighting lap from Sunday's Spanish Grand Prix. The spine tingles are back as the 130,000 fans stand at the site of their hero coming past. And the spine tingles are back when he goes on the grass and amost hits the wall on the sighting lap as he warms up his tires. This cannot be bought!