Category Archives: Uncategorized

Workout Journal, Day 9 (Vicki’s divorce.)

November 10, 2011 | By Adam Roberts | 450 Comments

There’s not much too report from the gym today. I cooked all morning (as you saw on my stimulating web show) and then ran on the treadmill for 40 minutes. While this was happening, I watched an episode of “The Real Housewives of Orange County.” I’m an east coast housewives kind of guy. While the housewives of New York and New Jersey are all distinct characters, the houeswives of Orange County are indistinguishable. They’re all blonde, big-boobed, and totally devoid of personality. They’re Stepford Wives minus the intrigue. On the episode I watched today, one of the indistinguishable wives was telling a chef what she wanted at her dinner party. “I know foie gras is a delicatessen in France,” she said. Funny, yes. But it was all downhill from there.

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Workout Journal, Day 8 (In which I take a shower at the gym.)

November 9, 2011 | By Adam Roberts | 2,787 Comments

Convenience-wise, it makes sense to take a shower at the gym. You walk into the gym clean and you leave the gym clean. You don’t have to drive home sweaty or even drive home at all if you shower at the gym. You can continue your day.

And yet, showering at the gym is something I’ve never done until today. I’m not sure why. I mean, ok, the hypochondriac in me is a little grossed at the prospect of standing barefoot in a stall where someone else just stood barefoot. (I could bring flip flops each time I go to the gym, but don’t want to.) Then there’s the issue of being naked in public. Of course that’s a very natural fear–it’s fodder for the all-time classic nightmare of showing up at high school naked. I suppose it’s a combination of hypochondria and fear of public nudity that’s kept from taking a shower at my new gym.

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Workout Journal, Day 7

November 8, 2011 | By Adam Roberts | 307 Comments

Today’s workout flew by (thanks to “Sex and The City” & the Chris March show on Bravo; I flipped back and forth between the two). It was a “bonus day” so that means just pounding it on the treadmill (no muscle-building circuits). It’s crazy when, during the interval training, it gets up to Speed 8. Then you’re really running for your life. I like it.

But I’m starting to fret a bit about the difficulty of seeing real changes when I can’t really focus on my diet the way normal people do who want to get in shape. I’m being good on Mondays and Tuesdays and mostly Wednesdays. Yesterday I had a tuna sandwich on whole wheat for lunch, a butternut squash chicken stew for dinner; today for lunch I had quinoa and a “fatouche” salad at Forage. Tonight I’ll probably have more of that chicken stew or, if I can convince Craig, we’ll go out for sushi. Tomorrow, I’m thinking a turkey sandwich for lunch. Not sure about dinner.

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Workout Journal, Day 6

November 7, 2011 | By Adam Roberts | 623 Comments

Today I teetered on the very edge of THE DANGER ZONE. I wasn’t close, I just leaned over and peaked over the railing.

Here’s what I mean: in the afternoon, I considered going home before going to the gym. This is THE DANGER ZONE. In the past, if I go home before going to the gym, I stay home. This was the case in New York when I’d come home after the coffee shop, find myself at my computer doing work, time would slip by and I’d say, “Eh, it’s probably not worth it.”

So today, when I considered going home between writing all those posts on my blog and my newsletter, I knew I was staring into the void. Which is why I drove straight to the gym and worked out.

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Workout Journal, Day 5

November 4, 2011 | By Adam Roberts | 0 Comments

That’s it! One week completed. And, I don’t want to jinx it, but it was a good week. I enjoyed going to the gym, I had good workouts each day, I ate moderately well and–most importantly–I felt really good afterwards.

Today I met with Danny, my trainer who laid out the plan that I followed this week. What I like about him is that he has a realistic approach to things. He doesn’t want me to overdo it, to cut too much out of my diet; it’s all about adapting to this routine gradually.

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Workout Journal, Day 4

November 3, 2011 | By Adam Roberts | 0 Comments

Pat me on the back, if you will, today I was impressive.

See, I’m cooking dinner tonight for SIX people (myself included) and usually, under such a circumstance, I would never, ever, ever take time to go to the gym. I’d spend the whole day cooking.

But not me. What I did was cook a bunch yesterday and then this morning I woke up and cooked, all so that I could take the hour necessary to work out and to stick to my program. So off to the gym I went after baking 3 layers of Hummingbird Cake. Today’s routine was that same sequence on the treadmill I talked about on Day 2. Because Tuesdays and Thursdays are “bonus days” according to my trainer (who’s trying to keep me realistic by only requiring I go to the gym 3 days a week) the treadmill routine is way less heart-stopping than the eliptical routine.

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Workout Journal, Day 3

November 2, 2011 | By Adam Roberts | 0 Comments

I won’t quit you, Workout Journal!

Sure, I thought about it this afternoon. “Do people really want a daily update about my workout routine?”

But this isn’t for you people. It’s for me. You don’t have to read it. I don’t know why you clicked this. Maybe you enjoy reading about sweaty Jewish gay people on treadmills. Or, in today’s case, an Elliptical.

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Workout Journal, Day 2

November 1, 2011 | By Adam Roberts | 0 Comments

Today was a perfect day at the gym. Mostly because it was a low-intensity day of interval training on a treadmill. Basically, I started at speed 3 and after one minute went to speed 5 then a minute later back to speed 3 then, the next minute, up to 5.5 and so-on until I was running my guts out at speed 8. Then back down .5 at a time.

What was nice about it was, even at the roughest moments (speeds 7 through 8) I knew I only had to get through one minute and then it’d go back to speed 3 and I could shake it off. This is actually the model for how I get through my writing in any given day: a little pain (picture editing, link embedding, proofreading), a little pleasure (checking e-mail, checking Twitter, checking Facebook). And so it was that 41 minutes later (I did 10 minutes of warming up at speed 2) I was covered in sweat but not at all beaten down like I was yesterday on the elliptical.

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Workout Journal, Day 1

October 31, 2011 | By Adam Roberts | 278 Comments

Are you more or less likely to quit the gym if you blog about going?

This is the question I’m putting forth as I return from the first day of the rest of my life (the 3rd time in 3 years I’ve had the first day of the rest of my life by joining a gym).

Here’s what I have going for me this time: a trainer. I paid for 5 half hour sessions that I’m spreading out over 5 weeks. Therefore, I’ll have at least 5 weeks of accountability. And after that, I’ll probably continue to pay to see the trainer once a month because, once again, accountability is key for me. Having someone to report to, to check in with and who can monitor what I’m doing will be a big help.

Plus, this trainer guy, Danny, is pretty cool. The last time I tried a trainer the guy was an ex-boxer who led me up a flight of stairs and told me to hit a punching bag for 20 minutes. Danny, on the other hand, really related to my situation as a food writer who eats fatty foods for my job and has to compensate somehow to burn more calories than I’m taking in. He’s a foodie too and talked to me all about his favorite L.A. restaurants.

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A Beginner’s Guide To Stephen Sondheim

October 27, 2010 | By Adam Roberts | 276 Comments

Stephen Sondheim turned 80 this year and there were numerous concerts, tributes, a Broadway show (“Sondheim on Sondheim”), and a recently published, self-annotated book of lyrics (reviewed here by Paul Simon) celebrating the man New York Magazine once called “God.” But for many, and I used to include myself in this category, the work of Stephen Sondheim is difficult to access; unless you go to the theater very often or you grew up watching primetime PBS, you probably haven’t had the chance to savor or experience the work of the man many consider to be musical theater’s greatest living artist. So here’s my attempt to make it easy for you, to provide you with a little roadmap so that one day you can become a bonafide Sondheim-worshipper, as I’ve become today.

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