Week 12: Down with the Sickness

Sunday: August 27, 2023

Sunday was meant to be a Rest Day. The only thing on my agenda was to meet up with my friend and fellow MotovloggerOpens in a new tab., Trekkie MotoOpens in a new tab., and take a long Motorcycle Ride out to Jim Thorpe for Lunch. Along the way, we planned a stop at three Covered Bridges near the Trexler Nature PreserveOpens in a new tab.. There would be some light walking in and around the bridges, but that was the extent of my activity plans.

I returned home late in the afternoon and was sore and weary. I don’t know what came over me, but I decided to hop on the Concept 2 Rowing MachineOpens in a new tab. and sneak in a workout. I managed 6,349 meters in 30 minutes and was wiped out afterward.

Monday: August 28, 2023

Today was the big day when I returned to the gym! Unfortunately, expectations and reality didn’t quite mesh, and I was left feeling underwhelmed.

Last week, I had a consultation with a Trainer at Anytime Fitness. We discussed my goals, and he put me through some motions to see if I had any limitations we would need to work around. Later that week, he put together a workout plan and emailed it to me.

Based on our consultation, I expected our first meeting to be a mini-workout where we walked through one of the routines, determined weights for each set, and reviewed form. The reality was that the trainer was meeting me on his personal time (which I didn’t realize during our consultation), and we quickly reviewed all of the exercises for both splits.

In approximately 40 minutes, we covered 38 Exercises that I would need to remember when I returned to work out alone. The trainer had me do a few reps of each exercise, checking my form and advising me on technique. The problem was a complete oversaturation – too much information and insufficient time to absorb it all.

I plan to return to the gym on Wednesday for my first workout, and I’m already feeling overwhelmed.

Monday: August 28, 2023

Slim Down Dad - 23.08.28

On Monday evening, I got to thinking about my gym situation. I’m self-conscious and feeling a bit overwhelmed. What can I do now to make things go smoother at the gym on Wednesday?

I realized the trainer created a program heavy on Dumbells and Cables for me. The idea was to stick with higher rep ranges and lower weight to ease my way back into working out. I have a couple of Dumbells and Kettlebells at home – maybe I could recreate part of the routine to get a feel for it?

My modified at-home workout was missing several exercises, and I couldn’t find a Dumbbell or Kettlebell alternative. Even so, this workout took me 50 minutes and felt good.

I spent 1 minute resting between each set. I think I may tweak that a bit and group some exercises so they are done back to back with no rest. The workout I completed in my basement was almost 50% rest (1 Minute between Sets x 25 Sets) of my 50-minute total workout.

Bench Press (Dumbbell)15 lbs220
Pullover (Dumbbell)15 lbs312
Rowing (Machine)360 SecConditioning
Bent Over Row (Dumbbell)15 lbs220
Shrug (Dumbbell)15 lbs312
Bicep Curl (Dumbbell)15 lbs315
Hammer Curl (Dumbbell)15 lbs315
Speed Curls (Dumbbell)15 lbs320

Thursday: August 31, 2023

When I was a kid, my Mom used the adage, “It never rains, but it pours.” In case you’ve never heard it before, it means there was never one problem and always several to contend with simultaneously. In my case, Achilles Tendonitis was bad enough to work around. Now I’m dealing with COVID on top of it.

When I woke up on Tuesday Morning, I didn’t feel well. I was congested, I had a headache, and I felt like I was running a fever. In a rare occurrence, I turned off my alarm and returned to bed, hoping another hour or two of rest would ease my pain.

I slept another hour or so and dragged myself out of bed. At about this time, my oldest daughter came stumbling out of her room and told me she felt terrible. When her mother checked her temperature, it was clear why she felt so bad – it was 105 degrees.

Fortunately, my daughter had an annual well-check scheduled at the doctor first thing that morning. She was tested for COVID and the result was positive. That triggered me to take a test, which came back positive.

The worst of it for my daughter was the initial fever. She has been doing fine ever since it broke. For me, it has been wildly inconsistent. I’ll feel okay enough to work for an hour or two (desk job), and then I’ll feel exhausted and sleep for several hours. Other times, I’m dealing with sinus pressure, headaches, or fever chills.

I have taken a few days off from work to rest, and my activity has been minimal.

Friday: September 1, 2023

Slim Down Dad - 23.09.01

When my alarm sounded this morning, I awoke feeling much better than I had all week. My sinus pressure was significantly reduced, and my fatigue seemed to have passed. After finishing work, I felt good enough to exercise in my basement. It felt good to be moving and sweating (and not just sweating from a fever).

I modified my workout earlier in the week and was much happier. Rest time was reduced, and sets were grouped so I could daisy-chain them together.

I performed each group for three sets before moving on to the next group. Between groups, I took roughly 1 minute of rest to recover. Early on in the routine, this recovery time seemed adequate, but as I got deeper into the workout, I needed closer to 2 minutes for recovery.

Bench Press (Dumbbell)15 lbs20
Skull Crushers (Dumbbell)15 lbs20
Bicep Curls (Dumbbell)15 lbs20
Rowing Machine60 SecConditioning
3 Total Sets
Bent Over Row (Dumbbell)15 lbs20
Shrug (Dumbbell)15 lbs20
Arnold Press (Dumbbell)15 lbs20
Rowing Machine60 SecConditioning
3 Total Sets
Hammer Curl (Dumbbell)15 lbs20
Speed Curls (Dumbbell)15 lbs20
3 Total Sets

Saturday: September 2, 2023

Slim Down Dad - 23.09.02

I got a little overzealous in the original planning stages for the Lower Body portion of my Home Workout. I plugged in too many exercises, some of which would ultimately be too challenging for my current fitness level. Fortunately, I realized this before I got to work and began making adjustments.

The end result was three groups, each with an easy exercise that would serve as active rest to reduce my heart rate. This was a blessing in disguise as I hadn’t planned to be gasping for air after Kettlebell Swings.

I closed each group with 60 Seconds of Cardio on my rowing machine. I didn’t do an all-out sprint but pushed harder than I would on a regular rowing workout. The magic number I tried to hold was at least 250 Meters in 60 Seconds.

Even with the modifications, this Lower Body Workout was difficult, and I was proud when it was all over.

Kettlebell Swing30 lbs20
Plank30 Sec
Goblet Squat (Kettlebell)30 lbs20
Rowing Machine60 SecConditioning
3 Total Sets
Squat (Bodyweight)20
Superman30 Sec
Glute Bridge (Kettlebell)30 lbs15
Rowing Machine60 SecConditioning
3 Total Sets
Side Bend (Kettlebell) 15 lbs15
Hip Abductor (Standing)15
Rowing Machine60 SecConditioning
3 Total Sets


Hey, I'm Walt, the Dad behind SlimDownDad.com. Juggling life with three active children (All Girls 😳), I'm navigating the world of fitness and family. The main focus of this blog is to serve as a fitness journal - a place where I can share stories and look back on my progress. My ultimate goal is to create a space where I can inspire other fathers to get out and be more active while making memories with their kids. Let's take on this adventure together!

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