April 9th, 2008
Electricity, originally uploaded by jbar2008.
So I have been a home owner for over a year now. During that time I have learned to do some home repairs, however, electrical work is not my strength. In fact tonight my wife and I were having a conversation about home repair. It became evident that my wife doubts my man abilities as far as home repair is concerned. I then took it upon myself to show my wife that she was wrong in judging me, and I made an attempt to impress her by doing some electrical work. This is a picture of the switch that I changed out. I almost shocked myself because I didnt shut off the breaker so there was juice in the wires. I accidently touched the wires together and sparks flew! My wife laughed at me. I solidified in her mind that I lack man abilities involving home repair. I guess at least she won’t ask me to do much around the house.
March 29th, 2008
Temple, originally uploaded by jbar2008.
My wife Sarah and I were sealed in the Salt Lake temple on March 13, just a couple of weeks ago. Here is a picture of us with her family on the steps of the temple after the sealing. It was such an awesome day.
I am starting to just blog from my phone because I can send pictures right to the blog. There may not be as much writing as in some of my other entries but as the old saying goes, a picture is worth a thousand words.
I am so excited about life right now. I feel like I am on track to accomplish my wrestling goals and I am accomplishing many of my other goals in life as well. There is nothing like setting a goal and reaching it that will keep you motivated to just keep going. After going to the convention that I just went to in vegas I am more excited than ever about the American dream and living it.
March 28th, 2008
Toughest Man I’ve Met, originally uploaded by jbar2008.
This man’s name is Markus Lattrel. I think that he is the toughest man that I have ever met. He was a navy seal and he fought his way out of the mountains in Afghanistan. I don’t even think that I can entirely give justice to his story, but he was shot, blown up, captured, tortured, and his entire team was killed in the mission. He spoke at the 2008 Medassets healthcare summit in las vegas. I have been here since Wednesday and I fly home today. The convention has been amazing! I’m so glad that I was able to come out for this. I will write about the trip in more detail when I get home.
March 25th, 2008
Hi everyone, it has been too long since I have last posted on the blog. I have been pretty busy lately with a lot of different things. I wrestled in the pan am championships and got the weight qualified last month, after that I headed to Slovenia for a tournament and was successful there. After I returned from the tournament in Slovenia, I headed to Utah for a week. My wife and I were sealed in the Salt Lake temple on March 13th. We were both so excited to be able to do that. It has been a huge goal of ours, and I am so glad that we were able to accomplish that goal. I don’t think that there has been a time in our marriage when we have been happier.
So this week has been a great one as far as training goes. This morning we had a great sprint workout that was a little different than we have done before. We went to the Bear Creek Trail, a cross country trail with plenty of hills, to run some sprints. The sprints were all uphill, and then we reached the top of the hill we had other exercises that we did like pummeling or doing lifts or executing technique. It was a great workout, and my legs were hurting this afternoon! I made sure that I got in a good ice bath after our afternoon practice so that I can get some of the soreness out. We have a recovery center here on complex that has some different modalities for recovery. I like to alternate between the steam and the cold bath to recover. It really does wonders, especially when you are hitting a hard training cycle.
Tomorrow the world team is heading out to Las Vegas to go to a convention for Medassets. I am pretty excited about the convention because I have heard that it is a pretty good time. I don’t know exactly what we are going to do, but TC told me that he went last year and that it was awesome. We are going to be doing some training while we are out there too. I am not crazy about everything that goes on in Vegas, but I am a big fan of the restaurants and buffets that they have there. I don’t know if any of you know this, but I am a pretty big eater, in fact I am going to have to be pretty careful after I am finished wrestling so that I don’t swell up like the good year blimp! I will make sure that I pace myself while I am out there so that I don’t make myself sick. I will fill you in on how the trip goes. Good luck to everyone. I hope that you are making great progress with all of your goals!
March 2nd, 2008
Great seat!, originally uploaded by jbar2008.
I have a great seat in the plane. I even have enough room to cross my legs and relax. I’m off to Slovenia.
March 1st, 2008
Yesterday I wrestled in and won the Pan Am Championships that were held in Colorado Springs. I won four matches en route to winning the tournament and in doing so I was able to qualify the weight class for the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing, China. I am really excited about this win. To be honest with you I feel like there is a huge amount of pressure that has been let off with this tournament. Now that the weight is qualified I can focus on winning the Olympic Trials later this June. I wrestled four matches. I wrestled a guy from el salvador, canada, brazil, and cuba. My toughest match was with the cuban. He is a pretty talented kid, and he won the first period by virtue of the coin toss. In the second period there was some confusion because I turned him in a front headlock, but they scored the move 2-2. With this he would have won the period and the match because they said that he scored last, however, I had scored a point earlier that they had forgotten to put up on the scoreboard so I was really ahead 3-2. Then in the third period I took him down and turned him and won the match. The tournament was actually really fun. There were a lot of friends and family that showed up to support me at the tournament. It would have been nice to catch up with some of them a little bit more, but during tournament time I usually separate myself from everyone so that I can focus better. I think that it is sometimes harder watching a wrestling tournament than actually wrestling in one. The reason for that is because when you are competing you at least have control of what you are doing in a match. When you are up in the stands watching all that you can do is hope and pray for the best.
I felt like I was well prepared for the tournament and that I wrestled well. There are still situations that I want to improve upon, but that is the name of the game. I have to get ready to compete with and beat the best at the Olympic Games. I have been involved with the sport of wrestling for quite some time now, and it is interesting to see how the intensity picks up during an olympic year. All of the years in between are tough and grueling as well, but there is just something about the Olympics that has everyone elevating their game. Now is the time that you have to make that extra push to outwork and stay ahead of the people that are coming after you. It is a challenge, but it is fun. There is nothing like overcoming obstacles. The pressure and the resulting nervousness that comes with pressure is uncomfortable, but when you are victorious there is nothing else like it in the world. It doesn’t just relate to wrestling either. Everyone faces challenges all of the time, and I love it when people stare at an obstacle and are determined to overcome it. Sometimes you win and sometimes you lose, but as long as you keep attacking the obstacle and improving there is success.
February 8th, 2008
Today I weigh in for the Dave Schultz tournament. There was a group that weighed in yesterday, and they are wrestling today. I on the other hand, weigh in today at 2:30. It is nice to have so much time between weigh ins and our competition. We usually weigh in the night before, but they have bumped it up a couple of hours. I don’t feel like it really affects me that much because I don’t get too heavy. We get a 2 kilogram allowance which is nice. Later this month at the Pan Am championships we will have to make scratch or exact weight. Anyway for this tournament there are a lot of foreign teams that are here. The training center is looking like a zoo now with all of the competitors that are here. I think the place that feels the affects of the crowding the most is the cafeteria. There are so many athletes, and tournament help that get their meals at the cafeteria this time that the workers in the cafeteria are working at a mad pace just to keep everyone fed. They kitchen staff tends to stay pretty most of the time as it is, but when you add all of these other people into the mix, it can get really wild. Times like these make me very thankful that I live off complex.
I am looking forward to getting in some more matches. It is a perfect time to tune up for the Pan Am championships that are coming up so soon. I have some family that are coming in from out of town to watch this weekend, and there are some people from church that are planning on coming to check out the competition. It is nice to at least have one competition that takes place in an area where I know a lot of people that can come and watch. I feel bad for some of the people who are trying to work it in to their schedule to come watch. For one reason, I usually never have an exact time to tell people when to come watch. I can tell them that if they stop by between 9 and 2 that I might wrestle, or that if they stop by between 4 and 8 to wrestle they might see me. It is kind of like waiting for the cable guy to show up. You never know what is going to happen.
February 7th, 2008
Glad to be home., originally uploaded by jbar2008.
I am glad to be home . Trips are always fun, but really there is no place like home. Actually I am pretty happy that we made it home yesterday. The weather in chicago has been pretty bad lately. On Monday when we were flying to Chicago from Denver, we were delayed for about three hours due to fog in Chicago. I didn’t realize how bad it was untilwe were landing in Chicago. One minute we were descending and I looked out the window and couldn’t see any city lights. The next minute we touched down and I was surprised. At that moment I better understood the delay. The weather was bad when we were leaving Chicago too. A little while after we had taken off over 700 flights were canceled flying out of Chicago. In fact the lady that I sat next to on the plane had been stuck in Chicago since Monday. She seemed happy to be getting home as well.
Anyway now it is time to get back to work. I weigh in tomorrow to wrestle in the dave schultz international open on Saturday. There are a lot of tough teams in town, and this tournament should be a great one. I am so excited to compete again especially at home. It would be nice to compete at home more often, but I am happy to compete at home at least once a year.
February 5th, 2008
Chicago Cup, originally uploaded by jbar2008.
Tonight the men’s greco team had a dual meet with the Bulgarian team. We beat them 5 out of six matches. Lindsey Durlacher started the night off right by beating his opponent. It was a close match, he found a way to win. Willie Madison lost to Armen Nazarian, and for those of you who know who he is you know that he is tough, a multiple time Olympic and world champion. Harry Lester looked explosive as ever and dominated his match. TC Dantzler was a home town favorite and won his match by turning his opponent in two consecutive periods. I won my match. I have been wanting to score more on my feet and I was able to do that tonight as I won my match. Dremiel Byers also won his match by reverse lifting his heavyweight opponent from the mat and tossing him over his head for a bid five point throw. We wrestled in the welsh ryan arena at Northwestern University and there was a pretty good sized crowd there to watch it.
All in all the event was very well organized and it was a lot of fun. We started the day off by working out at niles high school, and I actually met one of my high school coach’s coach. He coached down in the San luis valley, coincidentally where my wife is from. It is amazing that it is such a small world. A few years ago I didn’t even know that the San luis valley existed and now I run into people with ties there all of the time. After our workout we went to city hall and met the mayor of Chicago. We snapped some photos and had a good time, then we ate at the espn zone and played some games there. When we has finished with that we went back to the hotel and rested before it was time to head to the competition site. We went to the competition, signed some autographs, wrestled, had a nice meal and now it is the end of a long day. The event was great though. I wish that we had more events like this one, and I hope Chicago wins the bid for the 2016
February 3rd, 2008
family picture, originally uploaded by jbar2008.
Well I have finally taken the time to get a picture set up on the blog. It has taken me quite awhile as I am sure that you can tell. I am really excited about being able to post pictures while I travel too. Apparently I can post pictures from my email on my phone so I think that is amazing. However, when I am travelling internationally I am not sure if I will be able to make posts like that, but I am still really excited about this.