Tuesday, March 31, 2009

"Heave away, boys, Heave away!"

I has an ouchie today. My fault. I hit the gym pretty hard yesterday.

To those of you who know me in real life, you know that I laugh at gyms. I believe in building strength through hard work and outdoor activity. Also, you noticed that I've gotten to be a fatass along the way now that I'm not lobstering anymore. Back in January I started trying to eat better and go for walks and stuff when I could, and about 6 weeks ago I started lifting weights again. 6 weeks of lifting weights is longer than I've ever stuck with it. I've been blessed with a large build, and have worked outdoors for most of my life, so I'm plenty big and strong, but from humping lobster traps, I hunch, and from not getting cardiovascular exercise at all in the past 2 years, my weight went through the roof. As of yesterday, I've lost 15 pounds in 2 months, and my eating habits, while not excellent, have improved. Work in progress, and things are looking positive.

Today, although I am a bit sore, saw us having a very productive morning. We kicked ass doing some sailoring. Our goals today included changing out some hawsers on deck and reslinging some of the tow gear hanging off the bow of the barge.
This barge has one 'ship line' a medium-diameter, 8-strand hawser that is twice as heavy as any other on board. It's the same as the hawsers we used on my last ship, which was 10 times heavier than this barge. The principal difference here being that on a ship, there isn't a need to throw the eye splice of a hawser onto a dock bollard from a distance... there are line handlers who meet you at the dock to do that. On a barge, very often, lines have to be 'flipped' off of bitts and bollards from a distance, and thrown on from a distance as well, to stop the barge. This is fun, and also very hard (for me).
Well, a ship line is not for throwing, unless you're Gene, the barge captain here, who is 6-foot 5 and 270 lbs. Even myself, at 6-foot and 270+ pounds (can't wait until that + is gone!), throwing that line is unpleasant at best. So this morning, we changed out some lines, end-for-ended others, and moved that damn ship line into a position where it'll be heaved on with the assistance of a capstan. Hopefully, no more aching backs.

As you were, then.

1 comment:

Jeff said...

Its nice to know that there are still sailors getting a work out from...work. Things at my place of employment are lets say, soft if not down right easy. Still if I relied on nothing but overtime to keep fit on my ship than the only sprains and strains I would have would be in the form of papercuts and tired eyes. Maybe its time I went back to work somewhere that ISO-ISM hasnt quite infiltrated to the fullest.