Archives for January 2018

Rebuilding a Superhero: Take Two, Part Two

by Aaron Einhorn

Here we are, one week into consistently focusing on fitness, diet, health and costuming.  I talked about my goals here and while we’re off to a slow start, it’s been an encouraging one. I managed to stick to my calorie budget (for the most part), exercised some, and, well, thought more about the costuming goals.

Fitness

When I weighed myself this morning, Sunday, January 28, 2018, I weighed 228. My goal weight is initially to get to 185 lbs. again, and from there, I may shoot as low as 165 – but a well-muscled 185 is perfectly acceptable. Last week, I weighed in at 231.9 pounds, so we’ve got almost four pounds lost.

I tracked my food intake this past week using the LoseIt app on my iPhone. I am using the app to set myself a goal of losing two pounds a week, which gives me a rough calorie budget of this past week of 1,857 calories per day. I am also specifically using the app to track my recommended levels of Fats and Protein. Results:

  • Sunday, January 21: 1,778 (-79)
  • Monday, January 22: 1,650 (-207)
  • Tuesday, January 23: 1,742 (-115)
  • Wednesday, January 24: 1,659 (-198)
  • Thursday, January 25: 1,781 (-76)
  • Friday, January 26: 1,639 (-218)
  • Saturday, January 27: 1,860 (+3)

I didn’t log any of my exercise in the app, which according to the specifics of the app, would have given me extra calories to eat.

I did not quite hit my goal of working out six days this past week. I did manage to run today (although that’s going to count for next week), and I did the  Jillian Michaels’ 30-Day Shred, one time this week. I’m going to try to make sure I do work out with the video at least twice next week.

That said, I did manage to hit my step total every day this week.

Sunday: 10,326 steps.

Monday: 10,353 steps.

Tuesday: 30 Day Shred attempted using 5 lbs. hand weights for everything except the Chest Flys in the third interval, which I used 10 lbs. for. This was really rough, and I ended up modifying a lot of the exercises and taking breaks, but I did it. And I hit my step total of 10,095 steps.

Wednesday: 10,272 steps.

Thursday: 10,437 steps.

Friday: 10,798 steps.

Saturday: 11,955 steps, helped out by doing a Hero’s Alliance event.

Costuming

There was not a lot of progress on costumes this week, partially because of how they still haven’t even revealed the full version of the costume on TV yet.

There was, however, a Heroes Alliance event, so I’d like to show off two pictures to demonstrate my current status.

From a Heroes Alliance event in the Fall of 2012

From a Heroes Alliance event in the Fall of 2012

 

 

See the guy there on the right in the Superman costume? That’s me, six years and over fifty pounds ago. When the Ohio chapter of the Heroes Alliance started, I wasn’t the biggest or strongest guy on the team, or the most in-shape one, but I was in good enough shape that I didn’t feel bad putting on a pair of tights.

I felt good about my body, I was putting on muscle, and kids seemed to enjoy meeting me as Superman. All in all? It was a pretty good place to be in.

This is the goal. This is what I want to get back to. I may even re-add Superman to my line-up in addition to the Mon-El costume – that’ll all depend on how things are going.

Me as Doctor Strange this past summer

Me as Doctor Strange this past summer

This is me in the costume I’m currently wearing for Heroes Alliance events. And it doesn’t look bad – but you’ll notice that there’s a lot of loose fabrics and a very wide belt – all of which are designed to cover a multitude of sins. And even with all that, I am noticeably broader in the waist than I was as Superman.

Right there? That’s one of the main reasons I want to lose weight and get back in shape. I don’t like how I look when I see myself in the mirror stepping out of the shower. And I love being a superhero for kids with the Heroes Alliance – I want to be back to the point where I can do that without shame.

Here’s the other reason:

27500411_10156486272895616_5397329113206739044_oThis is my family. From left to right, it’s my sister-in-law, me, my step-mother, a family friend holding my niece, Mira, Christina, my Dad, Cordy, and my brother.

I’ve been given some less than fantastic health screening results recently – nothing bad enough to panic me, but bad enough to say “Dude, it’s time to fix this.” I love being a superhero for kids with the Heroes Alliance. I love being a father, a brother, a husband, and a son to these amazing people even more.

The transformation continues…

Rebuilding a Superhero: Take Two, Part One

by Aaron Einhorn
Hello Internet! It has been almost two years since I’ve touched this blog, but I’ve realized that it’s time to bring it back. And what better place to start than with trying to make myself back into a superhero.

You see, long, long ago, I created a column on Comic Hero News titled Superhero Transformation. This column existed to chronicle my efforts to get in shape and to build my first superhero costume in over a decade – Superman.

That effort was originally based around wearing the costume to San Diego Comic Con, but that costume ended up leading me into helping to create the Ohio Branch of the Heroes Alliance, and has led to a lot more costumes.

Of course, life being what it is, there have been changes since I originally dropped from 216 to 185 lbs. Changing work schedules and increased activity from my children has given me less time to work out, and bad food habits have crept back into my life.

I currently weigh 231.9 pounds. This has left me fairly disgusted with myself. I’ve gotten rid of, or at least stopped wearing, every superhero costume I own that involves tight clothing (and spandex is right the heck out.) And I have made several halfhearted attempts at eating better or exercising more, but none of it has stuck.

So, what changed? Two things. The first was getting bloodwork back, and realizing that as I am now in my forties, my body (my glucose levels, cholesterol, and other factors) has been trying to tell me that if I don’t make a change, I’m not going to make it another forty years. The other one, for all of the vanity behind it, has been a costume. Which is a horrible reason to try to get in shape, but it worked out for me okay in 2011/2012, so let’s see if we can make lightning strike again.

The costume? Mon-El. Specifically, the version of the costume from the CW’s Supergirl. This costume, right here.

Chris Wood as Mon-El (photo from The CW)

Chris Wood as Mon-El (photo from The CW)

Nothing keeps me accountable as much as a public log of my efforts, and so that’s what I’m doing again. This won’t just be a log of my fitness though, because that would be utterly boring and of no interest to anyone who is coming here for the superhero stuff. I will also be showing off my WIP for the costumes I’m currently working on.

Fitness

When I weighed myself this morning, Sunday, January 21, 2018, I weighed 231.9 pounds. This was before any exercise, showering, or eating breakfast. My goal weight is initially to get to 185 lbs. again, and from there, I may shoot as low as 165 – but a well-muscled 185 is perfectly acceptable.

My intention is to track my food using the LoseIt app on my iPhone. I am using the app to set myself a goal of losing two pounds a week, which at my current weight, gives me a rough calorie budget of 1,857 calories per day. I am also specifically using the app to track my recommended levels of Fats and Protein. For future weeks, I will be including my daily results on sticking to that goal.

I also intend to work out five days a week. On Tuesday and Thursday mornings, it will be weight-training/circuit training. I’m starting off with using Jillian Michaels’ 30-Day Shred, which was the backbone of most of my success last time around. I intend to add some more intense upperbody and ab exercises in the evenings of those days as well, but those will not be for a few weeks, because my arms are plenty sore right now just from doing that video yesterday.

On Mondays-Wednesdays-Saturdays (or Sundays), I am returning to running. I’m in training to run the Walt Disney World Star Wars: The Dark Side Challenge race in April. That will have me running a 10k on Saturday of the race weekend, and a half-marathon on the Sunday. I will also be helping as a coach at my daughters’ school for the Let Me Run program, a running-program for boys in grades 4-8 that trains them up to run a 5K. The 5K for our program is on May 6th, with classes beginning March 12. Once those happen, the weekly sessions with the boys will probably be my daily runs, but I’ll be doing long runs on the weekends to get ready for the Dark Side Challenge. And I’ll be doing morning runs until those sessions begin. My younger daughter, Mira, participated in the girl’s version of this program, Girls on the Run, and it was a great experience for her.

Finally, I’m going to be using my FitBit, and making sure I hit 10K steps per day. On days I run, that should be easy. On days I don’t, I’ll have to work on getting those steps in. Fortunately, we have a new puppy who would probably appreciate the extra walks.

Daily run results, whether or not I actually did Jillian Michaels’ routine, and daily steps will be recorded here as well, starting next week.

Costuming

The Mon-El costume is my focus right now. I don’t even really know where I’m going to start with having that made. So, more details to come.

That’s where I’m at. Hopefully some of you have read this far and will keep me motivated. And maybe I’ll be able to motivate some of you.