• Content count

  • Joined

  • Last visited

About realitycheck44

  • Rank
  • Birthday 10/24/1988

Contact Methods

  • Website URL http://
  • ICQ 0

Profile Information

  • Gender Male
  1. Don't shutdown the forum!

    This is terrible news. I don't post very often anymore so I guess I'm as much to blame as anyone, but I sure will miss this place and the friends I've made over the years. I don't use Facebook or other social media sites*, so this was the one little corner of the internet where I could discuss ideas with like-minded people. *Aside from a skiing forum. Which, interestingly enough, seems to have plenty of posters and activity. It even has a political subforum that is very active (which I avoid entirely). Anyway, it's a real shame this place fell by the wayside.
  2. Bad, bad, bad writing

    ^^Funny. It'd be nice to know whether each sentence or paragraph is by a single student.
  3. The Origin of Rights

    Maybe start by reading the essay by Ayn Rand that addresses the subject? It's called, "Man's Rights" (kind of a dead giveaway.) Also try:
  4. Happy Birthday Betsy Speicher

    Happy Birthday, Betsy! Thanks so much for all that you do.
  5. My Knee Surgery Adventure

    That sounds excellent, Abaco. I'm sure your doctor will tell you that even though you feel strong at 6-8 months post-surgery, that is also the time period during which you are most likely to reinjure it. I had a buddy who felt excellent and decided that playing in our playoff soccer game would be fine. He was wrong and ended up having a second reconstruction. Also: there is quite a debate about autograft vs allograft for ACL reconstruction. Each surgeon generally has an approach they use and recommend. Personally, I have concluded that a good outcome depends more on the surgeon than which technique he/she uses. The other vital step is finding a physical therpist who really knows their craft. Surgeons sometimes give good recommendations, but (in my experience) sometimes they are a bit out of the loop on the best physical therapists (particularly for athletes). Don't hesitate to "shop around" if you think you may not be getting the care you require. A final note on this topic: the "online presence" of any doctor/surgeon is unrelated to their skill as a doctor/surgeon. I have heard of marketing firms specializing in Search Engine Optimization specifically for doctors (to improve their online presence in search engine lists, i.e., Google). Some excellent surgeons have fancy websites with tons of facts, etc; others are basically unlisted. Just a heads up because it took me a while to figure this one out. PS. Apologies for the long, semi-rambly post.
  6. Teaching my son

    Another method that I've found particularly effective* is talking to him about his grades. If he works hard and gets an "A," does he think that someone who doesn't work as hard should get an "A" also? Some people are naturally gifted, and don't have to work as hard to get an "A." But they still deserve it. This makes more sense to me than your complicated scheme. Unless you plan on giving that money to his friends who don't earn as good grades as he does. The other method that is extremely effective, particularly for intelligent children, is to ask him why he thinks something. Next time he says "Dad, there's Obama!" ask him what he thinks about Obama, and then ask him to back up his argument with specific examples. If you do this correctly, he'll be forced to confront the holes in his thinking and re-evaluate it. And he'll learn a good lesson in being challenge to provide evidence for an opinion. Just my $0.02. *I don't have kids, but I found it very effective on my classmates when I was younger.
  7. Rachmaninoff Biography

    Quoting myself and bumping this thread because the Seattle symphony is hosting a Rachmaninoff "Festival" the first week of January!!! They're playing Piano Concertos 1 and 2 on Thursday (Jan 3) and Piano Concertos 3 and 4 on Saturday (Jan 5). I've been waiting...hoping for someone to play Concerto No 2 since I first heard it. I've seen the Third played four times now (2x in Seattle and 2x in NYC -- this past time (in Seattle) was the best), but they NEVER play the 2nd. I usually make a 'series' (3 performances), so I paired them with Tchaikovsky's Violin Concerto in D Major. I'm ecstatic!
  8. Mobility WOD blog

    Most of my injuries are as a result of pushing the boundaries of sports. Knee was an under-rotated front flip of a 30 foot cliff. Collarbone reconstruction was a misjudged jump. The current wrist injury was a binding pre-release going about 60 mph. The finger was a result of pushing my limits in the climbing gym. You may say these are stupid things to do, but I don't think they're a result of duplication. I make mistakes, but I think my lifestyle is sustainable, at least for 10-20 more years. I went through a bad few years, but I'm learning from it. I sleep more and take many more rest days than I did when I was younger. My workouts have changed from 3-4 times a week of low intensity to one time a week to 1.5 weeks of high-intensity work. I eat 300-500 calories every 3-5 hours.I'll read the book you offered. Thanks for the suggestion! Frankly, my personal experience make it difficult for me to believe the argument that the limiting factor is getting the liver to process the toxins and not getting bloodflow to the injured tendons/ligaments. Otherwise, all tendons and ligaments would heal at the same rate. But I'll definitely read the book and think about it. As always, thanks for your time.
  9. Mobility WOD blog

    This is what I mean by cold-water immersion therapy. It is a very different technique and purpose than icing (cryotherapy), which reduces inflammation. This technique doesn't work for everything, but I think it's patently false to say that there is nothing one can do to speed up recovery of tendons or ligaments.
  10. Mobility WOD blog

    Somehow, I missed this post by Ray. Also, I don't know how this turned into another thread of "RayK vs. the world." The point of this thread was to focus on the mobility WOD blog, which RayK has not commented on in the least. That blog does NOT (for the most part) advocate "stretching." It advocates mobility and positional control, which is a very different thing. Like Joss said, in my experience, the metabolic and cardio-respiratory system is NOT the limiting factor in healing an injury. Numerous examples in my own life have led me to believe this, regardless of what "research" or "experts" say, yourself included. Like you said in bold, tendons and ligaments are vascularlized, but have generally poor blood flow. My personal experience completely disagrees with your last statement, and I would love if you could back that up. In my opinion, the quickest way to heal an injury (unless it occurs as a result of a muscle imbalance) is to increase blood flow to the area. This way the toxins are carried away faster than they would otherwise be. This is what the "voodoo bands" and cold-water immersion techniques accomplish. In high school, when I was climbing alot on a bum hip, my left forearm got severe tendonitis in the wrist flexor tendons. I rested for years with no appreciable gain in pain relief. Pain was bad enough that pushups, pullups, bench press, etc all seemed to make it flare up. I started working with a CHT from Asia who understood the advantage of deep-tissue frictoin massage and ROLFing. While I understand that the research is still up for debate, I found that this was the only thing that made a difference for me. I've also head good things about eccentric loading, but have never tried it long enough to see if it truly works. Two other examples: A few months ago, I partly tore the extensor hood near the PIP joint of my 3rd phalanx. After waiting quite a while, I noticed no appreciable gains in comfort. I considered seeing a hand surgeon to fix the issue. After reading an excellent blog post by a top climber, I figured I’d give some of his “remedies” a try. After less than a week of trying the deep-friction massage and cold-water immersion techniques, the hand was feeling 75% better and I was back climbing shortly afterwards. Last time I tweaked a tendon on my knee, it was because I climbed Mt. Rainier off the couch (no training) last summer. Not surprising, descending 10,000 vertical feet in one 19 hour day was a bad idea and the knee didn't like it at all. I assumed I wasn't strong enough, and started working out again as soon as the knee could handle it (about a month). I did this with my best understanding of Ray's program. And I could barely walk around day 2-3 and was sore for a full 5-6 days afterwards, so I assume the intensity was about as high as I could get it. The knee started acting up again in April while skiing in 15" of new snow at 33* (basically, skiing in wet cement). This time, I tried deep-friction massage for the tissue and cold-water immersion. Those helped quite a bit, but doing the cold-water immersion for the knee is a pain. I was able to return to lifting and soccer, but I still get some pain hiking downhill. So I tried the “Voodoo floss bands” from the MWOD website. That seems to really help, more than anything else I’ve tried. You keep repeating yourself, but I wonder if you actually took a look at the site I linked or whether you’ll actually consider the arguments I’m making here. I don’t expect advice for free, but, then again, I’m not looking for your advice. If you feel like dialoging on these issues, I would be happy to learn from you experience. But I have learned a great deal from my experience in dealing with injuries. I do what works for me.

    Frankly, the alpinist Mark Twight is one of the most inspiring writers I've ever read. I know he's a fan of Rand, and I think his writing about the process of being the best you can be is superb. There's that quote from Atlas Shrugged where Hugh Akston says "[...] don't make the mistake of thinking that these three pupils of mine are some sort of superhuman creatures. They're something much greater and more astounding than that: they're normal men—a thing the world has never seen." Too often I see people lament their genetic ability rather than making it for it with hard work. I work hard. Twight makes me want to work harder (and smarter). I know they're lengthy, but they are too good to be cut down to a sentence or two: "Talk - Action = Zero." ________________________ "Those who aren't the real thing always find an excuse for their failings when confronted by the real thing. [...] This is a natural consequence of having been told from childhood, "you are a unique snowflake." Well you're not and I'm not. If you weren't given the gift, you can't get the gift so the best you can do - if your goal is important - is work as hard as you possibly can, pay attention every hour of every day and then maybe, maybe if you've done enough and been smart enough you'll emerge from the muck of mediocrity to shine a bit brighter than you shone before. Then, upon reflection you might decide your goal is a bit more important so you'll start paying attention every minute of every hour of every day. You'll find people who are better than you and you'll take an empty cup when you meet them. Their example will destroy or inspire you and if it's the latter you may stay and learn. You might imitate, doing as they do because you've already accepted that you do not know best - if you did you'd be leading the group they were trying to join. Perhaps being exposed to their superior ability will drive you to work harder than you thought possible, or necessary. Maybe you'll overcome your self-imposed (or worse, society-imposed) limitations and shine even more brightly. Wow, you're getting it: positive reinforcement for hard work and suffering. So maybe you give your goal even more significance and you begin cutting away the ideas and the expectations and the people who you believe prevent you from achieving it. Now you become a real selfish prick, and you begin paying attention every second of every minute of every hour of every day, and you sustain your awareness for weeks and months at a time. You no longer think yourself a unique snowflake, you're a steel-edged blade shaped like a snowflake and you're spinning at warp speed. You're the biggest fish in the pond. You're a badass. Now you have options. 1) If you think you haven't yet done enough, and you could do more, you might begin to understand that, the more capable you become, the higher the mountain rises ahead of you. At that moment you may recognize the existence of a legitimately serious group, ahead of you, above you, somewhere you're not. They are silent, implacable, constantly improving and evolving and because they are truly capable they are accessible to those who are genuine. Among them there's no defensiveness, no posturing or pretending, and they aren't interested in anyone else's. Selection for such a group isn't based on physical performance alone. Issues of character and commitment, and discipline and persistence balance physical talent. Because you clawed your way out of the muck, were "up all night, dedicated" and maintained interest for long enough to differentiate yourself from the short-attention-span sporting dilettantes who commonly brush up against this group they might accept you as an apprentice. If you empty your cup your chances are better. If you redouble your efforts your odds improve again." __________________ "Modern man is conditioned to expect instant gratification but any success or triumph realized quickly, with only marginal effort is necessarily shallow. Meaningful achievement takes time, hard work, persistence, patience, proper intent and constant self-awareness. The path to such success is punctuated by failure, consolidation and renewed effort. It is wet with the tears of emotional breakdown. Personal reconstruction is art. Discovering one's self, one's talent and ambition and learning how to express it is a creative process so may not be rushed. What's the hurry? Pressure to succeed according to a particular timeline comes from outside. If the goal is selfish self-improvement there is no schedule, no deadline. One's rate of progress is influenced by the intensity used to address the task. Hard, intelligent work speeds us along the path. Neurotic obsession and compulsion may steepen the trajectory but usually lead to illness and injury. In the end, the process takes as long as it takes -- you can't push the river. We are in it for the long haul."
  12. Mobility WOD blog

    Ray, two comments: 1. I am aware of what you do at Progressive Exercise at this point, and I'm in large agreement with the majority of your posts on the subject and exercise in general. That was an extremely long post above, but you never referenced the site that I linked above or gave an insight into how you personally combat compensation issues associated with injuries. The body is a "system of systems," that does an extremely effective job at covering up for an injury. I could (and did) workout 1x per week for 20 minutes focusing on two-five exercises, but this did NOTHING to help my compensation issues. Static stretching and mobilization efforts are completely different things. How can I get the most out of the leg press if my left hip is constantly on the verge of dislocating (which it was)? Doing the MOB that I linked above helps settle my hip back into the socket where it belongs. Are you suggesting this is a futile effort? Do you believe that, regardless of injuries or lack of mobility/functional positioning, one 20 minute workout is the solution? 2. I wonder what your thoughts on these two articles by Mark Twight, reknown ex-alpine climber and fitness fiend: He was committed to a similar, low-frequency, high-intensity workout regiment, but found that it left much to be desired for the endurance athlete (which is what it takes to climb mountains). Like I said, I have received exceptional benefit from the mobility site. I tweaked a tendon on the medial side of my knee that was being very stubborn to heal. While increased strength certainly helps motor control and is great preventative medicine, using this "voodoo floss band" technique has also been exceptionally helpful. Do you think this problem could have been solved just as quickly with rest and exercise alone? Why?
  13. Mobility WOD blog

    Thanks man. The thesis prize was just icing on the cake!
  14. Mobility WOD blog

    I see now that I misread a friendly suggestion as the idea that this site could only be of value if RayK said so. My apologies.
  15. Study Problems

    Wanted to bump this thread from a while ago, since I had received a significant amount of help and support from the member of this board. Decided it was time to check in, and I wanted to let you all know my progress. Not trying to brag, but I figured you'd want to know: I graduated from Webb last June (just over a year ago) with decent (...okay, good) grades. Senior year was tough. I completed a capstone ship design project (individually designed an entire ship from scratch in a 3-D modelling program) and wrote a thesis. My thesis was almost entirely outside the scope of the curriculum and required learning a few textbooks worth of new material to which I hadn't any exposure, but it's what I wanted to do and nothing was going to stop me. I worked like a slave, 20 hours a day, 7 days a week for almost a year, taking one day off a month (plus two weeks at Christmas). I was in the library when everyone else went to bed and back again before they woke up. It was difficult, but what a difference it makes when it's your idea. The thesis won a prize by the American Bureau of Shipping. I decided to work as an engineer for a bit before going back to graduate school. This winter, I'll apply to MIT, Johns Hopkins, and NTNU (Norwegian Institute of Technology), as well as UW and UMich as "safety schools." I play to study underwater robotics. Still haven't conquered my test-taking issues, but I'm working on it!