For anyone who's been under a rock today, Benazir Bhutto, would be successor to Pakistani President Pervez Musharref, was assassinated earlier today. I am not nearly fluent enough in the issues surrounding this to comment, other than to say that it's a freaking shame (yet not at all surprising) that people still see actions like this as a legitimate way of dealing with opposition.
In other news, the forecast for the housing condition isn't too great at all. An 18% drop next year, given about 6% inflation (pulling a real inflation number - one that includes fuel/home heating/food/etc - is a bit of a swag) since the height of the area real estate boom, translates to prices being off about 22% in real terms. That's a big drop. When I was on the linked page, there was a CountryWide Mortgage banner ad on the page (2, actually). They, and their brethren, contributed a whole lot to this situation. So did the speculators who just knew that they were into a can't lose deal with real estate. I have to check but I think prices in the region (based on median home values) are still up some ludicrous amount since 2000 - nearly 50%.
I certainly wasn't feeling very motivated to get through a lifting workout last night, but I did. Last night's workout was 3x20 minutes of cross training and then lifting. Once again, I chose running, elliptical and rowing for cross training. Both running and rowing are becoming quite a bit easier for me. My rowing efforts are nearly to where they were when I was erg rowing a lot about 10 years ago. Not quite there, but close. I used to be able to go 1:50/500 meters pace for a long ass time. Now I'm back under 2:00, but still a way to go. Before too long I should be able to pace at 7:00 miles in running. That's always been a tough barrier for me to break. I've run a mile as fast as 5:30, which isn't fast compared to a miler but it's pretty f-ing fast if you try to go out and do it. But that's a "fall dead across the finish line" type of effort. For any sort of distance, I've never gotten much below 7:00. Oh well, it's all academic except to track that yes, Virginia, my fitness does seem to be improving. For lifting, I am beginning to incorporate a little bit of weird stuff into my program - dumbbell bench presses on the Swiss ball and stuff - in an effort to create more functional fitness. That's what athletics is, after all, right? Integrated movements.
My biggest nemesis, the 10 lb tin of Danish butter cookies, is now finally vanquished. I think I had about 1600 calories of cookies (primarily sugar and lard)a day over the past two weeks. Good thing I still fit into my pants, although there is definitely a little bit of jiggle in the program these days. Knock wood, that ought to come off quickly enough when I pull my fist out of my mouth.
I found myself thinking about Tradezone races while I was working out last night. Strange. Not really thinking about breaking the tape or anything like that, but more trying out different scenarios like bridging and blocking and stuff.
All right then.