Cabo Dolphin Adventure

Here are the pictures of the Dolphin Adventure in Cabo San Lucas.


Royal Caribean Vision of the Seas cruise review

I am taking one blog and dedicating it to the review of my cruise and the accommodations.
We arrived at the Long Beach terminal at 1:30pm on Sunday and proceeded to check in, before we knew it we were on the ship without our kids :) We went to our room and dropped off our carry on bag and proceeded to explore the ship. First off on the 10th floor is the running track (1479 feet around, or 3.5 laps to about one mile). On the three days at sea, I was able to get in a 10, 14.5, and 5 mile runs) That would be my first international 1/2 marathon! :) The fitness center is also on the 10th floor. In the fitness center they have about 10 treadmills, a aerobics floor, some machines, and dumbbell's. We checked into the Vitality program and that is a program where if you partake in one of their fitness activities they give you a vitality token which you can cash in at the end of the cruise for some gifts. I still have 4 or 5 left, so if someone is going on a Royal Caribbean cruise and would like them, send me an email. Also on the 10 th floor is the shuffle boards. From there we went up to the 11th floor which is a night club. We then proceeded to the 9th floor where at the front of the ship is the buffet, then making our way back is the main pool and 4 hot tubs (although not too hot more warm, this is one of my few complaints about the ship). Behind the main pool is the indoor pool with the glass roof and two more hot tubs, this area is for adults only, is seemed to be a social area for adults and was decent area to hang out, because you do not have the wind that you get at the other pool, remember the ship is going around 25 miles an hour. Finally behind the indoor pool is the spa, where Lori and I both got a couples massage (90 minutes) which was in a corner room with the wall of windows looking out the side and back of the ship. I wanted this room for my cabin. The two ladies that gave us a massage, did an excellent job.

Some other notable items about the ship, our room was on the fourth floor inside in the very front of the ship, next to the main theater, so we hear the music/ performance each night. Although this was not too bad, we could have had the dining room next to us or above us. I heard from someone on the 8th floor, that they could hear people walking by the pool above them, if they listened carefully. While researching the cruise ship, I learned to bring clothes pins to hang up the wet clothes in your cabin, however I did learn that the hangers will hang from the privacy screen in the room, so you can hang the clothes from the hangers.
This being our first cruise, I brought the sleeping pills, and we did not need them, the ship literally rocked us to sleep each night, it was so peaceful and great. I did set my alarm to go off at 5:30 each morning, so I could get up and go running. I would start in the pitch dark and watch the sun slowly creep up into the sky. With that and watching the dolphins in the water while running, was a nice treat. Running on a moving ship, is a lot like trail running. Although the surface is flat, with the movement of the ship, the track would go up and down very slowly with the waves, I have heard some people complain about it, but I loved it. The track went from the front of the ship to just before the smoke stacks, so you never smelled the exhaust of the ship.

The first night we went to the dining room and was escorted to our table, and was greeted by our waiter and assistant waiter. Boon was our waiter and he was from China I think. The assistant waiter was Mariska and she was from South Africa. I told her that I want to bring her home with us (OK, her fiance can also come along). This was her first cruise as a employee, and she did an extremely wonderful job. I ordered a coffee and Lori ordered hot decaf tea with dinner. Each night, we would get to the table and my coffee cup and creamer was on the table and Lori's tea cup and teabags were there waiting for us. By the time we would get seated, the hot water for the tea and coffee would be pored for us. We shared a table with two other people, a lady and her 4 year old son. We somehow only had dinner with them 3 times during the entire cruise. Very nice people and a pleasure to have at the table.

We were anchored in Cabo San Lucas, because of the shallow bay, on Tuesday and we signed up for the activity of swimming with the dolphins at the dolphin pool, worth every penny that we spent. After the briefing and getting life vests on, we were able to sit on the side of the pool and pet the dolphins, then we would jump into the water one at a time and the dolphin would come up and kiss us on the cheek, and then we would be able to kiss the dolphin. We then went into the middle of the pool with a bar and held it up for the dolphin to jump over (I did it twice, holding the bar not jumping). I then had the dolphin roll over and laid on its stomach and went for a ride around the pool WOW that is awesome. Near the end we all (about 8 of us) got into the pool and the dolphin swam around us and we got to pet it and splash around with this awesome animal. We decided to purchase pictures of us with the dolphin and they cost $25 each or a CD with 8 for $100.00 which is what we did. I will upload them later. We then proceeded to go to Poncho's Mexican restaurant. Lets face is around the bay, is the tourist trap area and even a Hooters there. We started to get away from the main area and asked a taxi driver where he would recommend and he sent us to Poncho's which was real good food and great Margaritas. The restaurant is located at N 22° 52.900 W 109° 54.795. After lunch, we did a little shopping and made our way back to the ship.
The next morning we docked were in Mazatlan and when we got off the boat, we walked along the dock to the front of the ship between ours and the Princess cruise ship in front of us and caught a catamaran boat that took us to the island across the water way, where we walked a short distance to the beach where we put on life vests and went for a short 4 mile paddle in a kayak and this was done as a large group of 10 to 15 boats of two. About 1/2 way around cactus Island I decided to jump into the water to cool off. Very refreshing. We then proceeded to paddle the boats back through the surf and to the beach, where we had food and drinks available to us. The group then had the option to go hiking, or swim. Lori and I decided to go swimming in the ocean, since we can go hiking anytime at home. Lori got her hair braided on the beach and I bought a hammock swing. We made it back in plenty of time to do some shipping near the port terminal.

The next morning we arrived in Puarto Viarta, where we caught a zodiac boat and took it to the small town of Boca located at N20 30.760 W105 18.949 where we then boarded some big trucks and that took us to the to the base camp for the Zip lines at N20 28.776 W105 16.044. Here we got fitted with equipment and got on some mules to take us to the top of the mountain where we did about 12 different zip lines ranging anywhere from 50 feet with a angle of 50 degrees to 600 feet with a much less angle. The first several zip lines are above the jungle trees and have a great view and maybe 300 feet down to the ground. After about 7 different zip lines we then rappelled down a waterfall into a crisp clean pool of water. A couple of more zip lines then we walk out onto a platform over a waterfall and do a free fall rappel. The last zip line is set up as two, so two people can race across the 500 foot canopy covered run. You get going about 50 mph at the fastest part, this was such a rush, and once again worth every $$. The pictures that their photographer took sell for a couple $100.00 for a CD. They do not print pictures there, but you get a CD.

The next two days at sea started with the captain getting on the intercom to announce that we would be pulling into Cabo San Lucas to drop off someone that needs medical attention. Some elderly lady was walking on the deck and apparently slipped and broke her hip. So, we pulled in to the bay and dropped a lifeboat that they loaded her into and drove her to a waiting ambulance and the boat returned and we headed back out to sea.

We were in Long Beach on time on Sunday morning where we elected to take our own bags off the ship rather than having the valet service do it. We were one of the first off the boat and were heading to Six Flags for the day. We got there 10 minutes before it opened.

Let me say this about Six Flags Magic Mountain. If you are going there for any other reason than roller coasters, you will be very disappointed. It is full of teen agers and dirty. There is gum everywhere from people spitting it out and even throw-up on some of the ride platforms. They have about 12 good roller coasters and it costs $60 to get in plus $15 to park. Weigh your options before going. We did have fun riding the rides and some scared me to death (X2 ride).

Over all a great vacation, and now back to catching up on all the work.


Race Report for Cactus Cha-Cha 2008

The race was great, it started off cold (for us thin blooded humans). It started off almost on time. First Lori was part of the 5K wave, and she did awesome. She ran the entire time, with out her ankle giving her any trouble.
The called the 7 miler group to the start and I headed for the middle of the pack. Chad headed for the back of the pack. Within 1/4 mile Chad had passed me, so I just paced my self off of him. We got to a sign that indicated it was 1 mile for the mini-cha-cha. They take an additional loop so it was only about .7 miles in for us. It caught some people off guard that there was the first mile. I continued to pace behind Chad for a few more minutes, then I continued to pass him up the hill. I never looked back for him after that, I just focused on running the best I can for the entire time. At about mile 3.2 we encounter 4 switchbacks and the person that was following behind me asked if I was going to run the entire way up. I said "you bet I am" I then asked the only person in front of me if they were going to run up them and the person just got out of the way and I took off up them. At about 3\4 of the way up, I came upon a large group of people that were briskly walking so I just fell in behind them for about one minute. When I crested they all seemed to pull off to catch their breath, and I took off down the other side of the mountain. I was out of the technical area and along a flat area, so I looked down at the distance and it read 4.88 miles, then BOOM, down I go. Got the knee and wrist banged up, but I do not think I missed a beat, I was up and going, only this time focusing on the trail. I then came across the finish line at 1:12:58. 5 minutes better than last year and a new PR for me. Oh yea, Wes I did beat Chad, but that will be short lived (I will gloat in the mean time).

In the morning I head to this:

To go here:


The deep FREEZE Arizona style

I was reading our local trashy newspaper, and here is what is heading our way:

If you have been waiting patiently for fall, your perfect weekend has arrived.
Today will be warm, but it all begins to change on Saturday when cool weather - yes, actually cool - rolls into the Valley from the north.

High temperatures Saturday and Sunday will remain in the 70s, according to the National Weather Service. The last time a weekend stayed below 80 degrees was in March.

Last night I went for a run with Chad to stretch our legs, before the Cactus Cha Cha run on Saturday. With the forecast, I will need to find my parka and Yacktracks for the early morning run. I think we will hang out with Chad and Julie on Saturday and Sunday before we get snowed in, we will head for Mexico.


Just keep swimming

Last night, we went to the gym for a swim. we did 700 yards. Lori wants me to start swimming, to help build my cardio and as a preventive measure for injury. I need a goal for most activities that I get involved in, so I found a training plan that is 0 to 1760 yards in 8 weeks. It has me swimming 3 days a week, starting with 700 yards 4@100, 4@50, and then 4@25 with no more than 15 seconds rest between each set. For the most part, I did well, and then hit the spa. We started packing for the cruise, and I think I packed more workout clothes than any other clothes. I even packed The Stick and the Trigger Point roller and ball. Tonight Lori and I are getting together with Chad for a run, should be a great evening with the weather, etc.

My friend Michelle has given me an "I Heart Your Blog" award!

Thanks a lot, Michelle!!!

This comes with another responsibility: to post another six random facts about myself and "tag" another six bloggers with some blogging love.

Here goes nothing:
1) I have OCD, Once I get something going, I do not let it go.
2) I LOVE politics, you know there is the right way and the wrong way to look at things.
3) I have a slight fear of snakes, I can look at them in a cage, and even hold them if they are handed to me, but I fear comming across one in the wild. I am prepared for when it does happen, I know what to do and that is to get Chad between the snake and I.
4) I hated school until I went for my master(s) degrees. From grade school through college I was happy with just a passing grade, and they were not all passing. My first graduate degree I graduated with a 3.2 gpa and my MBA I graduated with a 3.8 gpa.
5) If I could go back to school, I probably would choose Law school.
6) I am the black sheep of the family.

So there you have it.

I am hereby tagging:1) Bob2) Chad3) Julie4) Lisa5) Pat and6) Poke


Weight loss in the wrong direction

First off, the food intake has not change, and the exercise has only increased and I gained 5 lbs since Friday. Now for the truth behind the numbers, DRUGS (Legal prescription drugs). I am one of the many people each year that seeks treatment for ADHD each year. I have been taking medication for about 4 years now, and the drug I have been on has a side effect of weight gain, high heart rate, excessive sweating, etc. About a month and a half, I started a reduction of the quantity I was taking and started to see results on the scale, with minimal effects, which was good. As of a week or so ago, I had eliminated the medication. The results were a successful/failure type of results. I was short tempered, dizzy, shakey (more than normal), and the weight was pouring off. Saturday, I got to the point where I had to go back onto the medication. I followed up with my Dr. yesterday and he had some good news for me. He is removing all his patients that take the drug I am on, and changing them over to a new drug, that does not have the side effects of the old one. Needless to say, I am optimistic and happy. I started the new drug today, and will see how it does over the next month. He also wanted me to follow up with a local Internal Medicine Dr (that he goes to) to have my metabolism, cholesterol, and other checkups, to make sure that we do everything possible to get me in top mental/physical shape.
I know that you are thinking that this is maybe TMI, but I wanted to share this with you, and get some frustration off my shoulders.


Another slide in the right direction.

New Book for the Vacation in 9 days:

This morning, I weighed in at 186.8 (187) and only 9 days to go till I go on vacation.
I lost 10LBS in the last 18 days.

Last night, I got with the running group and knocked out 7.63 miles in 81minutes. I ended up burning 1341 calories :)

Here is what I did yesterday:
7.63 miles

Food Intake:
Honey Bunches of Oates: 130 Calories
Milk: 60 calories
Cliff Bar: 240 calories
Salad w/ South Beach Italian Dressing: 100 calories
Carrots: 25 calories
Celery: 35 calories
Sugar Free Jello w/fruit: 50 calories
Almonds: 50 calories
Redvines: 420 calories
Beef Tip Meat: 200 calories
Steamed Veggies: 70 calories
Total: 1380 calories

Final Result (This morning), 187 lbs. 17 to go
Total Resting Metabolic Rate (RMR) (2129) - 1380(Consumed) = 749 deficit
Total Calories burned exercising = 1341
Total FAT Calories used = 2090


Moving down the scale again

This morning, I weighed in at 188.0 and only 10 days to go till I go on vacation. I would like to be at 180 by next Sunday morning, but we will see what the big man wants for me.

Last night, I was able to kick some dirt and scored 5 miles in 50 minutes. For those of you in congress or our banking industry and can not do any math, that would be a 10 minute mile pace per mile. I ramped up the pace to see how the calories would pay out. I ended up burning 755 calories :)

Here is what I did yesterday:
Run: 5 miles

Food Intake:
Honey Bunches of Oates: 120 Calories
Milk: 60 calories
Cliff Bar: 240 calories
Oatmeal to go: 220 calories
Tomatoes: 25 calories
Celery: 35 calories
Apples X 2: 70 calories
Almonds: 150 calories
Cheese (laughing cow) X 2: 70 calories
Banana: 90 calories
Carrots: 50 calories
Hershey's miniature chocolate: 125 cal

South Beach Turkey Dinner: 240 Calories
Water: LOTS AND LOTS================================

Total: 1490 calories

Final Result (This morning), 188 lbs. 5 down and 18 to go.
Total Resting Metabolic Rate (RMR) (2129) - 1490(Consumed) = 639 deficit

Total Calories burned exercising = 755
Total FAT Calories used = 1394


Flat Line Day

When I got on the scale this morning, it showed a little less than yesterday, but basically the same 189. I did return my shoes AGAIN to REI. I got home and realized they gave me a pair of 4E width, so I went back and got a normal width.

Here is what I did yesterday:
Run: 5 miles

Food Intake:
Oatmeal Pancakes X2: 283 Calories
Jelly: 100 calories
Egg: 70 calories
Carrots: 35 calories
Chicken Breast: 185 calories
Yogurt: 100 calories
Apples X 3: 105 calories
Banana: 108 calories
Healthy Choice Chicken Dinner: 290 calories
Milk: 90 calories
Cliff Bar: 250 calories
Recees Peanut Butter Cup (1 cup): 130 Calories
Total: 1746 calories

Final Result (This morning), 189 lbs. 4 down and 19 to go.

Total Resting Metabolic Rate (RMR) (2129) - 1746(Consumed) = 383 deficit
Total Calories burned exercising = 732
Total FAT Calories used = 1115

I did drop .5 lbs, but rounding has left me the same as yesterday for the weight loss.

Here are some of the more fun foods that some of us love and their caloric values:

Candy Corn: 20 pieces, 140 calories, 36 grams of carbs, and 28 grams of sugar !
Cinnabon Cinnamon Roll: 730 calories, 24 grams of fat, 114 grams of carbs, 1.5 grams of fiber !!!

I hope that none of you are picking up a 6 pack of Cinnabon Cinnamon rolls for a lunchtime snack.