26 May, 2012

P90X Day 29: Chest, Shoulders & Triceps

Something new! Today is the first time for this workout. So, was it hard? Well, yes and no. The workout I had been doing on this day was Chest & Back. I’ve commented previously that that workout has become my favorite. I doubt Chest, Shoulders & Triceps is going to become my new #1. Still, it was a fun workout. And, I have to say that based upon how I felt two hours after, I got more out of it than I usually do on the first time attempting a new workout.

Still, I had my share of issues with it. Sometimes I wonder if it wouldn’t be better to start P90X by first spending a couple weeks trying out all the various workouts. That way you’d be familiar with all of them and have a baseline before your official day 1. I had my typical issues today: choosing the wrong weight, having to pause and restart an exercise because I wasn’t ready and didn’t fully understand how to do it, etc. It took me close to an hour and a half to do the one hour workout because of all of my pauses. And I’m still not sure I have the proper weight yet figured for all of the exercises. But, I think I’m close.

Speaking of the proper weights, when Tony says “you don’t need a lot of weight for this one”, listen to him! There are several exercises in Core Synergistics and this one, where 5-10 pounds is enough. If you go and pick up some 25s, you’re going to be hating life long before the exercise is over.

So, what did we have today? Lots of curls, flys & presses, and push ups. No pull ups today, but new push up types. One of the push ups was a one handed one. I think the very first time I saw anyone do that was Sylvester Stallone in one of the Rocky movies. I remember thinking to myself “How can anyone do that?” And I’ve never attempted one in my life. Until today. Did I do them? Yes, I did. Don’t have my sheet in front of me, but I think I did 10. Might have been 8. I can’t remember.

It wasn’t all sunshine and rainbows though. I did find a push up I can’t do. At least not yet. The clap/plyometric one. It could be because my carpet is too thick. I might try it again on a hard floor. But I think I only did 3 where my hands actually came together, and all 3 of those had bad landings. I didn’t even try to get my legs off the ground.

All in all, this was one of the harder workouts, I thought. Oh, who am I kidding? They’re ALL hard.

Afterwards, Ab Ripper X. I swear that one should come with a warning, “Abandon hope, all ye who enter”. It’s been a week and a half since the last time I did Ab Ripper. I was worried that I had slipped some in the interval, but that didn’t really seem to be the case. I don’t think I did quite as well on the sit ups, but it was pretty close. As for the rest, if anything I did a little better than I recall from the last time. It was a good feeling.

Tomorrow, back to Plyometrics, which is another that I haven’t done in a week and a half. Looking forward to it.

25 May, 2012

P90X Day 28: Phase I Complete

Today was X Stretch again, but more importantly, it was the last day for Phase I. That means we check body fat again. 11.64% today. Down from 12.25% on Day 1. I’d hoped to be a bit lower, but honestly I can’t complain. Getting below 10% at my age is going to be very hard. But I’ll keep plugging.

Also, according to the calcs, I’ve gained about 3/4 of a pound of muscle mass. Again, I’d hoped for more, but from what I’ve seen with others, it does truly look like gains accelerate as you go through the program. Which isn’t surprising. Still, the 3/4 of a pound makes sense, based on the calorie numbers I’ve been running. Seems like I need about 100 calories more a day, maybe slightly less, than I did a month ago. That’s consistent with a gain of slightly less than a pound of muscle.

Tomorrow, my old friend is back. Ab Ripper X. I haven’t done it in a week and a half. I guess I’ll find out if in the last week I’ve gotten better or worse during the break. But, before Ab Ripper X, I get a new workout: Chest, Shoulders & Triceps. I’ve heard conflicting reports about this workout. Some have told me it’s no harder than Chest & Back, just different. Others have told me it’s much harder. Pretty sure it’s the one with the goofy pull ups, and we all know how much I like those. I expect it’s going to be pretty hard. But I’m looking forward to finding out.

Also, the diet changes for Phase II. I lose about 25 g (100 calories) of protein per day, and gain about 50 g (200 calories) of carbohydrates per day. Despite nothing else changing, my total calorie number is supposed to be the same. You figure out how that works.

I’m still fudging the numbers a bit anyway, since I’ve discovered the totals are still too high for me. I’ll probably end up dropping my protein by about 30 g and increasing the carbs by about 30 g. Close enough.

Oh. I just realized I didn’t mention today’s workout at all. It was surprisingly good. I think I stretched farther than I ever have before on almost all of the stretches. It felt quite good. I still don’t like the hamstring stretches, but at least now I have to stretch farther to get the same amount of displeasure from them.

I expect to be totally wiped after tomorrow’s workout. Will let you know.

Stay tuned.

Who is Brett Kimberlin?

Today is “Blog about Brett Kimberlin Day”. Living in Indianapolis, I think I have a little bit different perspective on this sociopath than some, so I’m going to talk about his history.

If you know nothing about his present activities, this is the man who has been harrassing (that’s a mild word for it) conservative bloggers. Among his victims are Andrew Breitbart, Patterico, Liberty Chick, Aaron Worthing, & Stacy McCain. All of these people became his victims merely for writing blog posts about this man and his activities. I encourage you to read the links above. I would quote from them, but there’s too much there. I don’t feel I can properly excerpt any of it. But believe me when I say that his tactics against them have been nothing short of chilling.

Remember this scene from “The Untouchables”? Imagine Brett Kimberlin as Frank Nitti, and you’re getting warm. He’s been far worse than Nitti here though.


Anyway, on to the more distant past, and Brett Kimberlin’s initial “claim to fame”.

This is Brett Kimberlin:

Brett C. Kimberlin schemed to elude justice with a series of bizarre plots designed to murder, maim and rob his enemies, create havoc at Speedway and discredit the chief government prosecutor.

On sheets of yellow legal pad, Kimberlin asked another inmate in the Marion County Jail to arrange for the murder of Bernard L. (Buddy) Pylitt, the former first assistant U.S. attorney who coordinated his prosecution.

The offer contained a list of 10 names, including a potential prosecution witness, Robert Scott Bixler. Some names had crosses next to them. These indicated those marked for murder, it was learned.

“There were six to be killed, two or three to be roughed up and one or two were to be robbed”, a source said.

You might ask exactly what charges Kimberlin was facing and why he’d go to this trouble. Here’s your answer. This is Brett Kimberlin:

It was about ten minutes before 10 p.m. on Sept. 1, 1978 when the first two bombs went off. A third exploded at 10:45. They'd been placed in trash cans and dumpsters and no one had been close enough to be hurt, but the blasts were plenty large enough to do some real damage.

Still, it seemed like it might have been the work of teenage boys, who may have been sufficiently startled by their own handiwork to reconsider how they spent their idle time.

But the next night another bomb went off, and then another.

A Speedway High School gym bag had been left by itself, as if forgotten by a player. One of the parents, Carl DeLong, 39, walked over to retrieve it when the bomb went off. His right leg was nearly blown off and his left leg and right hand were severely damaged. Doctors tried to save his leg but had to amputate.

The bomb that maimed Carl DeLong on Sept. 6, 1978 turned out to be the last one, but residents of Speedway didn't know that. Each day people wondered when and where the Speedway Bomber would strike again. As far as the public knew, investigators had no idea who was behind it.

Brett Kimberlin is the Speedway bomber.

The shooter below is not Brett Kimberlin, but believed to have been working for him:

On July 29, 1978, Speedway resident Julia Scyphers, 65, answered a knock at her door. A man she didn't know was standing on her stoop asking about items she'd recently tried to sell at a yard sale. She let him into the garage to look at the items and he shot her in the head.

Mrs. Scypher's husband, Fred, 68, heard the bang and came out in time to see a car pulling out of the driveway. He would later tell police he'd gotten a glimpse of the man who'd come to the door.

Why would Kimberlin want this old lady dead? Good question. This is Brett Kimberlin:

Speedway police were puzzled by the murder. “She had no enemies,” they said.

But she did. Investigators learned her daughter, Sandra Barton was a close…very close friend of Brett C. Kimberlin. The relationship between the pair was complicated by his strange affection for Mrs. Barton’s pre-teen daughter, Debbie

The article I’m quoting was written in 1981. In 1981, that’s how they worded thing like that in the news, “strange affection for Mrs. Barton’s pre-teen daughter.”

Not following me, yet? Let me make it clearer with the following paragraph from the same article. This is Brett Kimberlin:

Investigators learned Debbie accompanied Kimberlin on several long, unsupervised trips, including holidays in Florida, Mexico and Hawaii.

Mrs. Scyphers violently disapproved of Kimberlin’s questionable relationship with Debbie and her mother.

Getting it now? “Strange affection”, “questionable relationship” are euphemisms.The author is trying very hard to state without stating that Brett Kimberlin is a pedophile.

This is also Brett Kimberlin:

Five years later, in 1988, Kimberlin vaulted himself into the national news when he claimed he'd once sold pot to Dan Quayle, then a U.S. Senator from Indiana and candidate for vice president. Quayle vehemently denied the charge and Kimberlin produced no proof beyond making the claim.
Kimberlin was paroled in 1994 after serving about 13 years of his 50-year sentence. But when he made no effort to pay the DeLong judgment his parole was revoked in 1997 and he went back to prison for about four more years, released again in 2001.

Finally, this is Brett Kimberlin:

Kimberlin is the business partner of leftist blogger Brad Friedman who frequently plays fast and loose with the facts. They are both involved with a group called Velvet Revolution which also receives funding from the Tides Foundation.

JTMP has received at least $70,000 in grants from the far-left Tides Foundation since 2006.  The 2006 grant in the amount of $60,000 was for general operations which means JTMP could use the funds without restriction. The 2008 grant of $10,000 was also for general operations.

Another noteworthy donor is singer and liberal activist Barbra Streisand who has given JTMP at least $10,000 through her Barbra Streisand Foundation since 2006 ($5,000 in 2006 for general operations and $5,000 in 2008 for general operations).

Yet another is Teresa Heinz Kerry, wife of Sen. John Kerry (D-Massachusetts).  Mrs. Kerry is CEO of the Heinz Family Foundation which has given JTMP at least $20,000 since 2006 (the grant was earmarked for general operations).

See, the “tolerant” left has no problems being associated with Kimberlin. In fact, the left loves him. Why?

Do the people at the Tides Foundation, Barbra Streisand Foundation, and Heinz Family Foundation know that they have given money to an organization run by a litigious, violent, radical felon who appears to delight in intimidating people whose views he disagrees with?

Oh wait. There’s no point in answering that question in the Obama era, is there?

Because he’s on their side, and he practices politics the Chicago way. Wow, and now we’re back full circle to Frank Nitti.

That is Brett Kimberlin.

24 May, 2012

Math Is Hard

The other day, I presented a lengthy, if somewhat boring rebuttal to the awful piece by Rex Nutting on President Barack Obama’s (D-USA) spending.

@politicalmath presented another one of his wonderful infographics on the subject late last night. If you haven’t seen it, it’s been promoted to Hot Air. I suggest you take a look. It makes many of the same points that I made, and a few more, but does it in a manner that’s a bit easier to read.

@JimPethokoukis has another. And another. Oh, and one more. The first one is inflation adjusted, which is excellent. The other two, point out the spending in terms of GDP. That’s good, but I prefer absolute dollars, at least if we’re rebutting Nutting. I think % GDP is misleading in this case, since GDP has shrunk. But, you may disagree. There are still some very valid points in all of his writings and I encourage you to read it. He makes one great point that I thought of myself just today, and I haven’t seen elsewhere.

Don’t the House Republicans get any credit for fiscal restraint the past two years?

Absolutely. Remember that if Obama had his way, spending would be much higher. Speaker Boehner keeps saying no and is to be commended here.

Finally, today @danieljmitchell posted a piece on the subject. I’m a big fan of Mitchell, but I don’t think this is his best effort. It’s much like mine. Long and meandering. But he makes one stellar point that no one else has made. And, it’s the actual point of this post. I’m going to dig a little deeper on this one point.

I think all four of us have pointed out that TARP is a big factor in the FY09 spending increase. And that since it balloons FY09, that makes the increases in FY10, FY11, and so on, smaller.

But wait…it’s worse than that!

TARP not only made FY09 spending larger, but it made FY10 and FY11 spending smaller.

Yes, you read that right. How? Because TARP repayments were counted not as receipts (revenue), but as negative outlays (spending) in the budget.

FY09’s budget was increased by $240 billion dollars due to TARP spending. FY10 was reduced by $95 billion due to TARP repayments, and FY11 was reduced by $65 billion from the same.

In other words, we spent $160 billion more the last two years than the government has been saying we spent.

Remember my graph?

Yeah, that dip in FY10 below 0? It never happened. When you exclude TARP repayments, FY10 spending is $3.552 trillion, a 1% increase over FY09 ($3.518T). FY11 spending is $3.668 trillion, a 3.3% increase over FY11, a 4.2% increase over FY09, and a whopping 23% increase over FY08!

And remember, I’m not doing anything with FY09’s numbers. And we’ve already established that a) FY09 is a poor baseline due to TARP & stimulus, and b) it’s questionable to assign much of FY09 to President George W. Bush (R-USA) in any event. But, even taking that as Obama’s staring point, his spending increases are $160 B more than Nutting is giving him credit for.

P90X Day 27: Yoga X

Nothing new to say about Yoga X. This is the 5th time I’ve done this workout, I think. I look ridiculous on the last couple of the active poses. I think it’s half moon and twisting half moon. Actually, it’s true of pretty much any of the stuff that begins with Warrior 3.

You have no idea until you’ve done this workout what it feels like when you make it through the first half. Of course, the second half, with Yoga Belly 7, isn’t really any better. But at least it starts off easier, and gives you a break. At the end of that first 45, I am completely drenched in sweat. Hard to believe that yoga could make you sweat so much.

One other minor thing I’ve noticed. I haven’t mentioned it before, but you hear a lot about people who do P90X, and how they’re in constant pain for the entire 90 days. They shouldn’t be. If you’re one of those people that after day 1, you can’t lift up your arms to shampoo your hair, then you’re doing it wrong. You could be pushing yourself too hard, but most likely you’re not eating right. That’s why they make those protein drinks people. A nice big protein drink right after a workout will greatly reduce your pain the next day.

Now, a little pain is ok, especially in the beginning. Heck, even now on day 27, my legs are sore after doing all of the yoga. But in the morning, I’ll be fine. Probably even sooner.

I don’t know why I brought that up. Just did.

Tomorrow, or some time this weekend, I’ll likely have at least one nutrition post. And next Wednesday or Thursday will see my first mini-review of the P90X program as a whole. By that time I’ll have done all the workouts, so I’ll have something to say. My full review will occur on or after day 90. But there will be a preliminary one next week.

Tomorrow, X Stretch and the end of Phase I. Stay tuned.

23 May, 2012

P90X Day 26: Core Synergistics And…a Bonus

Today was the second time for Core Synergistics. I won’t have to do it again for another 4 weeks. Near the end, Tony says “this may become your favorite workout”. I’m not sure about that, but I will say that if I could only do one workout out of the set, this would be the one.

Why do I say that? It feels like the broadest based and most intense of the workouts. At the end of it, I’m completely exhausted, from head to toe, and I’m drenched in sweat. There is a great mix of cardio exercises and strength exercises. And while there are a few that make me grimace, there are none that are just completely awful. Or any that might cause you to want to make adjustments because of bad knees or week ankles. And there are no exercises that bring on feelings of inadequacy like some of the pull ups can. Everything is doable by just about anyone. It’s just hard, and it’s non-stop. But it works your heart, your legs, your arms, your abs, in short, everywhere.

Now, a brief word about the entire P90X program. I believe I mentioned way back at the beginning that there are actually three different programs. The one I’ve been doing is what most people think of when they say P90X, but it’s really called P90X Classic. There’s another one that de-emphasizes strength training a little bit, in favor of a workout program that gets you lean and fit. It’s a bit easier, and is called P90X Lean (some people call it P90X Lite). The third is the most intense and is called P90X Doubles.

The three different programs flip around the workouts a bit. In Lean, you replace Chest & Back with Core Synergistics. Doubles is the same as Classic, but starting in week 5, you add an additional workout 3 or 4 times a week. This workout is called Cardio X, and you also do Cardio X in lean, replacing Plyometrics.

Why do you care about all of this? You may not, but I’ve been curious about Cardio X for some time. It’s the only workout in the series that’s not part of P90X Classic. Also, I was curious about it in that I was wondering how hard it would be to upgrade to Doubles.

So, today I did a second P90X workout. Not because I felt like the first one didn’t do enough for me. But just because I’m crazy and I wanted to do this Cardio X.

So, what’s Cardio X? It’s a mishmash of several of the others. It has pieces of Yoga X, Plyometrics, Kenpo X, and even Core Synergistics in it. In fact, there’s only one Cardio X exercise that doesn’t appear elsewhere, a variation of Jumping Jacks that Tony calls Wacky Jacks. It’s also the shortest workout, being only about 45 minutes long. I got a good workout from it, and had no trouble getting my heart rate up like I like. I also felt better during the yoga segment than I normally do during yoga. Not sure why. Maybe because it was shorter. Definitely, this was the “easiest” of the workouts, and there’s no doubt that length was a contributing factor to that.

Anyway, this workout is another good one. It’s lighter on strength than Core Synergistics is, and is heavier on cardio (big surprise, given the name). But it’s still another broad workout. If I wanted to turn P90X into a much more cardio based thing, I think I’d do Cardio X, Kenpo X, Plyometrics, and Core Synergistics. And throw in a couple days of yoga and stretches.

And if I wanted to do Doubles, the length is perfect for me. I prefer to do morning workouts, but the standard P90X workouts are 60-75 minutes (90 for Yoga X), and I don’t have that much time in the morning. But 45 minutes I could easily do and have done. The plan for Doubles is that you do a morning Cardio X 3 or 4 times a week, and then your regular Classic workouts every day in the evenings.

So, will I do that? I considered it, but no. As I keep saying, I’m really concentrating on the strength training here, and I would hate to do Cardio X in the morning and then not have enough left in the tank to get a good workout in the afternoon/evening. It’s the second one that’s the more important to me, and I don’t want to sacrifice it. So, I’ll be sticking with Classic, but it’s still nice to know exactly what’s in Cardio X, finally, and how hard it is.

Tomorrow, back to Yoga X. Then Friday is X Stretch and the end of Phase I of P90X. Stay tuned.

CBO Says We’re Between a Rock And a Hard Place

Interesting report released yesterday by the CBO. While it still depends heavily upon the static analysis that I’ve criticized so often in the past, it does still show the hard choices we’re going to have to make in the very near future.

In short, the report says that if the Bush tax cuts expire on January 1, then we will have a short recession in 2013. I think they’re optimistic about the length of the recession, especially taking into consideration external factors such as the economic crisis in Europe, but it’s not a pretty picture regardless.

Under those fiscal conditions, which will occur under current law, growth in real (inflation-adjusted) GDP in calendar year 2013 will be just 0.5 percent, CBO expects—with the economy projected to contract at an annual rate of 1.3 percent in the first half of the year and expand at an annual rate of 2.3 percent in the second half. Given the pattern of past recessions as identified by the National Bureau of Economic Research, such a contraction in output in the first half of 2013 would probably be judged to be a recession.

However, the CBO says that if the Bush tax cuts are extended, then GDP growth for next year will be around 4.4%. That’s extremely optimistic, considering the current state of the economy and the pace of the “recovery” we’ve had so far. I merely present it as a data point from which to judge the rest of their projections.

Unfortunately, extending the Bush tax cuts is not all sunshine and rainbows, according to the CBO. Since they believe that such an occurrence will limit tax revenue, they see this as a problem down the road. I can’t say it any better than the CBO did, but I will bold some key points:

If all current policies were extended for a prolonged period, federal debt held by the public—currently about 70 percent of GDP, its highest mark since 1950—would continue to rise much faster than GDP.

Such a path for federal debt could not be sustained indefinitely, and policy changes would be required at some point. The more that debt increased before policies were changed, the greater would be the negative consequences—for the nation’s future output and income, for the burden imposed by interest payments on the federal debt, for policymakers’ ability to use tax and spending policies to respond to unexpected challenges, and for the likelihood of a sudden fiscal crisis. And the longer the necessary adjustments in policies were delayed, the more uncertain individuals and businesses would be about future government policies, and the more drastic the ultimate changes in policy would need to be.

The CBO is going to keep hammering this home (and so will I), until someone other than Congressman Paul Ryan (R-WI-01) gets it. The economic path President Barack Obama (D-USA) has put us on leads to financial ruin. And we are very far down the path. Every day we delay doing something about it a) makes it harder to solve, and b) makes the required solutions more drastic.

Now, the CBO thinks that we can avoid this financial ruin by raising taxes. But, unless we can raise taxes to 30% of GDP without destroying the economy (we can’t), then the CBO is wrong. We may need to raise taxes. But we absolutely need to lower spending. And, until we commit to doing the latter, there’s no point in even considering the former.

One final point: politicians, regardless of party, who are ignoring this problem or pretending it doesn’t exist are endangering the future of America. These people must be stopped. Quickly. This is what the elections this November are all about. It’s very simple. You can either vote for America, or against it. The time to choose is now.

22 May, 2012

P90X Day 25: X Stretch

Nothing really new to say about this workout. It's the fourth time I've done it, I think. I will say this. Yesterday I mentioned that every workout has a few exercises that just make you cringe, when you see them coming up. That's even true for this one. I hate the hamstring stretches. Hate them. Hate them. Hate them. Someday I would love to get to the point where these aren't unbearable. I think I'm a long way from there, though. And it's hard to believe that I'll even be close to that in a mere 65 more days. Still, it's a goal for the future.

More and more, I'm considering doing a second cycle of this when I finish. I think I'll take a week off and then hit it again. Probably won't post about it every day the second time around, though. You're welcome. :) I may do P90X+ instead. I know I won't be ready for P90X2.

Democrats Biggest Problem: Math

You may have seen this article claiming the “Obama Spending Binge Never Happened” or the graph below today from the Democrats.

The graph is from the article. The only problem: the article is complete bunk. It’s interesting reading, but has some serious flaws, some of which I’ll detail.

Also, they retrieved their data from the OMB, and CBO. I have a problem with that, in that the CBO data doesn’t always agree with the Treasury department. I’m not sure why. But, since the Treasury is the last word on our fiscal situation, I’ll go with it for any historical analysis. I will use the latest CBO estimates for FY12-FY17, however.

Why am I going all the way out to 2017? Well, the author of the article wants to pretend that the major pieces of ObamaCare don’t go into effect next year. But they do. Since this is law that has already been passed and signed by President Barack Obama (D-USA), and it’s his signature legislation, it’s fair game to be included.

Now, for my graph, I go year-by-year, rather than look at 4 years at a time. Here’s my graph of percent change in outlays from year to year.


Now, there are some interesting things about this graph, to be sure. First, the only period where increases were consistently small was FY93-FY99. We never had a year in there above 4% increase. We on the right like to credit the Republican Revolution of ‘94 for the low deficits late in the decade, but the simple truth is that things were moving in the right direction even before President Clinton’s (D-USA) first budget (FY94). And remember, this has nothing to do with the dot com boom. This is outlays only, not receipts. Clinton and the GOP Congress should be commended for keeping outlays down through this period. Yes, they made lots of military cuts, and that’s one of the reasons things start climbing again after 2000, but the data is undeniable.

Now, notice that big spike for FY09. That represents an 18.2% increase in outlays from the previous year. It’s hard to see, but even FY08 had a 9.1% increase of FY07, so these were two bad years in a row. Of course, the reason for the increase in FY09 is the stimulus package, and TARP. The combined effect of these two on FY09 outlays is around $400 billion. Taking those out would cause FY09 increase to be a much more reasonable 4.8%.

Now, here’s the other problem with FY09. The article linked above notes that FY09 should fall under Bush's numbers, since he was President in September, 2008. September is the start of the next fiscal year. However, it does attach the stimulus money to Obama, since Obama signed that into law. Of course, the author, Rex Nutting, doesn’t mention that Bush never signed an FY09 budget. The Democrats refused to submit one until after the election.

(And you thought that Democrats avoiding submitting budgets was a new thing)

It was again Barack Obama who signed the omnibus spending bill funding discretionary spending for FY09. Of course, that’s only discretionary spending, not mandatory spending. Mandatory spending just increased at previously approved levels automatically. If this is giving you a headache, you’re not alone. I thought I’d write this post in about 15 minutes, but it’s taken much longer. So, who to give blame to for FY09? Bush should get blame for TARP, and Obama for stimulus and omnibus. But the rest? Typically, you’d assign it to the outgoing President. Is that right in this case? Maybe. I honestly don’t know.

Moving on to FY10, the year Nutting wants to start with for Obama, we see a 1.8% decrease in spending. Nutting tries to convince us that Obama’s a hero for this. But put it in perspective. From FY81-FY08, the average increase per year was 5.8%. So, to use some hard numbers, imagine that FY08’s budget was $1,000. Assuming average increases, FY09 would have been $1,058, and FY10 would have been $1,119. In reality, FY09 was $1,182, and FY10 was $1,160. In other words, the 1.8% decrease was a pittance. It should have been much larger. And FY11 should have had a decrease again. By now, there’s no TARP in the budget, and the stimulus money is almost all spent. And yet, our budgets are still much higher than FY08. But Nutting wants to convince you that we haven’t seen an increase in spending under Obama.

The CBO does project increases for Obama’s second term of 3%, 4.3%, 6.5%, and 4.1%. Three of the four years are below the historical average, though, and that doesn’t seem likely at this point.

If all of this is too much, let me sum up this way: FY87 was our first $1 trillion budget. FY02 was our first $2 trillion budget. FY10  was our first $3 trillion budget. FY16 is projected to be our first $4 trillion budget. If this sounds like Obama has reduced spending, then you’ve lost your mind.

21 May, 2012

P90X Day 24: Kenpo X

Another short one today.

No, really. I promise.

If you've been following this space, you know that Kenpo X has been giving me fits. Not because it's hard, but because it's a cardio workout, and I haven't been able to get my heart rate up to what I considered a good level. I also mentioned that around the middle of the last Kenpo workout, I thought that I had figured out what I was doing wrong.

I was able to test my theory today. And boy, was I correct. This was the most draining and exhausting Kenpo workout I've had yet. And after Core Synergistics yesterday, this doesn't feel like a "recovery" week at all. Feels more like a "torture Chris week". X Stretch tomorrow, so at least that's going tobe somewhat restful.

That's all for today. I have another post on diet and nutrition coming up. It just hasn't quite gelled yet. Soon, though.

20 May, 2012

P90X Day 23: Core Synergistics

Core Synergistics is new. Or at least, new in the sense that I haven't done it before. It's kind of a mishmash of cardio, strength, and ab exercises all focused on the core. And man, is it hard. Is it the hardest workout yet? I don't know. Maybe. Each workout is hard in its own way. And for each workout, there are a few exercises that cause you to groan when you see that they are coming up next.

Today's workout is no exception. This is definitely not a workout I'm looking forward to doing again. Fortunately, I don't have to do it again until...Wednesday?? I thought this was a rest and recovery week. Tomorrow is Kenpo X. What's restful about that?

One of the amazing things this particular workout shows you is how you can still get a workout even with very light weights. 5-10 pound weights are enough (at least for me) in most of the exercises here. You do a lot of reps with floor-to-ceiling type stuff with mixed curls and presses. No proble for the first 5-10 reps. By the time you get to 20 though, you're asking yourself just how many you're supposed to do. And the last 5 are downright painfull.

What else is in this package? Well, three new push ups for those of you that can't get enough push ups. And lunges, side lifts, and a couple ab exercises that look pretty easy at first until you find out that you'll be holding the position for 30 seconds or more.

Form is everything in this workout. Actually, I'm starting to learn that's true for just about all the exercises. If you don't do the exercise exactly right, you don't get the benefits. Even if you're just off by a little bit, it dramatically affects the befpnefits you receive. So something I have to keep reminding myself of, if the exercise doesn't seem that hard, watch the video closer and see what I'm doing wrong. For most of the exercises on most of the workouts, there's not all that much you can do wrong. A pull up is still a pull up. But, there are always some where that's not true. A lunge isn't a lunge if you don't go low enough, or if your knee is too far forward, etc. All of the exercises in Core Synergistics are of the latter variety.

Tomorrow Kenpo X. Stay tuned.