Friday, February 26, 2010

On the way home...

Heading back home from Japan today; my bus leaves in an an hour and a half. I did some roadwork today, a 7km interval run along the river between Machida and Fuchinobe. Fuchinobe is to where I take the train to our center each day. After I finished my river run, I walked into town and caught the commuter train back to Machida (my running work colleagues: this river trail is paved, and a good reason to stay in Machida when visiting the engineering center).

A successful week for fitness as I was able to get in about 3 hours of roadwork. Now I need to carry that success forward next week at home, then the following week in the Middle East. Fortunately, I only have to win one day at a time...8 hours and counting until my plane takes off for home and all the people who make it so.

Monday, February 22, 2010

Solitude in a Throng...

My hotel is in Machida, a suburb of Tokyo. Machida has a population density of almost 16,000 per square mile (almost 5800 per square kilometer). Those of you who know me best already know what everyone else will now know: I do not like crowds and I do not like closed in spaces.

Escaping the crowds to the confines of my 220 square feet (~21 square meters) hotel room is not a good choice for me, though it is fine for sleeping. Nor am I able to find regions like Johnson County, Wyoming where the population density is less than 1 person per square mile. Where does one get out and find solitude and space? Be up before everyone else. I handle cityscapes best between 4:00 AM and 5:30 AM. Today, during my roadwork (intervals), I saw maybe 10 people out this morning, and most of them were storekeepers getting ready to open for the day. And, there is something revealing of a city in its morning nakedness -- of times that once were and the hope the sunrise might bring.

I still have an hour and half before breakfast, so it is a good time for some Living Water...

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Facing facts

The first thing I have to personally note about this new assignment and its travels is the following: it will let me kill myself. The constant change of time zones and the constant eating out, along with the constant air travel and what that does to the body are all factors against my health. I peaked health-wise at 50: I was doing 8 mile runs in less than the time required of young Marines to graduate boot camp, and I was doing upper body training that would make a SEAL proud. BUT, I got into a lot of business travel and general health carelessness, and now I am starting over, and about 20% heavier.

As this will be my life for the next two to three years, I have to hang up the excuses and start doing a better job regardless of jet-lag. I have stay motivated to exercise, even though what my body can give today is a far cry from what it was almost 3 years ago.

Today, in Machida, Japan, I got up and did an interval run. Intervals are great for starting out, and with the hills around here, plenty of a workout, even for the 30 minutes I did the road work. This is the beginning, not the end. I have to keep applying myself to fitness like my life depends on it, because it does...

What does it mean?

What does "Protopolemstis" mean? It is a transliteration of the Greek "First Warrior". Many of you know my love for the Greek language, primarily the Greek of the New Testament. This compound word is used because of its multiple meanings to me. Now, I am not the very first warrior, nor even the primary one. But I am a road warrior, traveling on business more than 50% of the time (not that the 50% is defining qualification to call oneself a 'road warrior', either), and I am what my company calls a "domain champion". A domain champion is one who is chief or primary overseer for a discipline or 'domain', providing guidance to the those in the field and advising the management concerning the domain's direction and needs. Hence, I combined the two ideas into "Protopolemistis" (in the actual Greek: prwtopolemisthV). In addition, I have been asked to move from Houston, Texas to Paris, France, and what better excuse to start a new blog?