A Happy St Patricks Day to You!

Happy St Patrick’s Day (a little late...) everyone.

My band GUPPY EFFECT is hosting a “Rock Out With Your Shamrock Out” Happy Hour show (6-9 PM) at the Bos Meadery tonight (Friday March 18). I'm guessing it will be poorly attended by those who went out and partied super hard last night (most people), on the official SPD. But its early hour and classier venue should appeal to the more modest partiers who didn't let instant gratis get the better of them last night.

Yesterday, I did a couple hours of contract work for UW in the morning before driving downtown to Madison’s one and only currency exchange to finally convert the pesos from our February vacation back into good ‘ol American greenbacks. I spent most of the rest of the day at the library writing content for my nonfiction book in progress, in between short breaks to read Harper Lee's "Go Set a Watchman" (stay tuned, a review of this racist, albeit well written, screed is coming soon via this blog). I’ve determined that I work best from about noon to 5 or 6 pm and if I spend most of the morning mellowing out and gathering my brain together, things go a lot more smoothly with the writing. I usually do some reading and free writing in the morning to loosen things up, unless I am putting in a couple hours working for THE MAN.

Wednesday was productive this week. I spent three hours in the morning working on a photo project for my guitarist Stefan before our Mastermind accountability group meeting at noon (only he and I attended). GUPPY EFFECT had a potent band practice from 2 to 5 PM and nailed all the material we’ll be rocking at the Bos show tonight. I had a very solid workout at Orange Theory Fitness Wednesday night too, getting about 20 minutes (out of 60) in the orange zone (that’s over 84% of maximum heart rate). I was satisfyingly sore and fatigued afterwards and through most of yesterday. My bum big toe was hurting after the workout, so I took a maximum dose of Naproxen and that neutralized the pain. No more than baseline joint pain this morning.

Wednesday's workout was my third of four monthly OT workouts that I can redeem at my current membership level (the lowest). I joined OT to motivate myself to workout more and it has definitely been motivating me. When hard cash is on the line, I want to get my money's worth. If you schedule a workout via OT and cancel it (like Deborah did on Wednesday, because she was wiped out after work), thy dock you $10 as a punitive measure. So it really keeps you on your toes (pun sort of intended). My original goal with regard to joining Orange Theory was to make a pact with myself to work out intensively for at least an hour each week. I have modified the goal a little bit though. Now it is simply to get the four workouts completed as soon as I can each month. It's similar to how I approach my work as well. I try to get ahead of it and if I hit my goal early, I "give myself a raise" by rewarding myself with some time off.

Since OT workouts are 60 minutes, I count it as equivalent to two 30 minute workouts per week. The CDC or whatever recommends 30 minutes of moderate exercise five times per week for maximum health benefits. So if I do an Orange Theory workout once a week at a minimum, I only need to do three 30 minute moderate workouts on my own. This is usually possible because I often try to power walk to places within a couple miles of home, and I bike ride longer distances on the weekends.

If I get my four requisite workouts out of the way earlier in the month, all the better. I will simply workout outside like I usually do until the monthly membership re-ups, then begin the cycle again. It will be a good exercise in...well...exercise...but also self discipline. Orange Theory has an app that works with their proprietary heart rate monitors, so I can still get some of the benefits of the gym workout when I am doing my own thing on weekends, provided I use the damn thing. One of the perks of Orange Theory workouts is that they are led by a personal trainer who can guide your performance and give you tips on good form. I am not sure how much benefit I get from that, or if it is worth the high cost of Orange Theory membership, but whatever. It’s there if I need it.

So, this weekend kicks off with GUPPY EFFECT’s Bos Meadery show tonight. It looks like I am going to a songwriting workshop on Saturday morning where I'll get one of my songs critiqued. It’s hosted by the Madison chapter of the Nashville Songwriter’s Association International and I think it is free, even if you aren’t a member (my membership has long since lapsed). On Saturday evening, my Rock Workshop class meets at the Madison Music Foundry (MMF) to work on some songs that will eventually get recorded at Blast House Studios, which is affiliated with MMF. On Sunday, I’ll likely attend the Bos Meadery open mic in the afternoon and then go to Funks Pub for the open jam stage on Sunday night, which I usually live stream on the Intarwebz. The rest of he time, I'll hangz with m'baby and chillax.

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