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Joe Delgado and Jason 2008

Joe Delgado's Racquetball Blog

Love racquetball. Here's my blog about it. When I get to combine things that I love like computers and racquetball, my kids and racquetball. My friends and racquetball. There's no better place for me to be.

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05/13/17 Happy 12th Birthday Jason

My older son, Jason (right), turned 12 today. Looking back at these twelve years seems like a blink. He's been doing great in school with some honors. Still working at karate and making some progress. Can't believe 6th grade is almost over. Then just two more years before High School.

He's a good kid that acts a little silly and I can't fault him for that. Sometimes I am a little too hard on what he eats, says, and fails to do.

Anyway love you Jason. Happy Birthday!

 

03/17/17 Don't really know where to Start

Racquetball has been consistently taking a back seat to other things in my life. It started innocuous enough, I would miss a day here or there. Then it would be a week, then two. Then I would play for a night and be sore for almost the entire weekend. Show up, get patronized, get angry, play harder, get more sore, miss more time. My wife and I went away on vacation last week and last night she had to work. I also have some sinus problems, so I wouldn't be able to play. So the short of it, been about three weeks since I played and a few weeks before that.

I remember the late Fred Letter telling me playing once or twice a week is not enough. He's been proven right time and time again. Except it's worse now. I need about three games to start getting warmed up and then I'm already tired and running on fumes.

Not giving up, just dumping. My rebounder is gathering dust downstairs since I haven't made it habit to work out. I have no problems following routines. I work on projects all the time and I hate breaking my habits, but seems I have a problem starting one that involves fitness or racquetball. I've been hanging on to Thursday nights and protecting it, but once a week is like a tease. Here's a taste of the fun you used to have, but you'll never get any better. Also the fact that I'm playing with guys that are ten, fifteen, twenty plus years younger than me. Some suck, some are very good. So I've been become the old guy that people are forced to entertain. Instead of the old guy with a ton of experience and skills. Don't think I ever really had the skills compared to other players, but I was making slow progress.

My boys need the fitness, so if I can't bring myself to start a habit for myself. I need to do it for them. They are getting a little too unfit for their ages. I don't want that to become a burden for them in the future. I would love for them to take up racquetball more often and learn to be more competitive and mentally tough. The world we live in, isn't getting any easier.

12/01/16 Matt's 8th Birthday

Well we're a lot more settled in the new house compared to Jason's birthday about six months ago. Matt is still firey as always and unique. He's getting a lot better at drawing and does well in math. He has made some good strides in reading, but still needs to push harder for that. Heard from his teacher in 2nd grade that he always wants to do more problems than the day before. He also helped a new student who doesn't know English very well and helped him get around. Of course, don't hear about those things from Matt.

Eight years seems to have gone by so fast. I feel like I need to actively spend time with my boys because like tomorrow it'll be gone. They will be grown up and looking to establish their own lives Past couple of years has engraved the fact that things never stay the same.




08/15/16 120 Mindset for Racquetball

About two weeks ago (8/4/16), I met up with my old friend, Rob, to play some racquetball. We meet about once a week or so. Always reminds me of the late Fred Letter's that's not enough advice. Usually the past few times have been really bad efforts on my part. I just quit before I get on the court. I'm out of practice. I'm out of shape. I've been standing all day at work. The list of excuses was endless. Rob and Sol are so much better than me now. It was just a big old pity party and my loses and scores reflected that. It did not feel good to play. Honestly, a couple of times I wanted to quit.

I've been watching a lot of Eric Thomas videos. I first started with ET with his "As bad as you want to breathe video", later moved on to his book, and been watching and listening to his videos and audiobooks. He's a great motivational speaker and I look forward to seeing him in person one day. One of his concepts is 120 as in 120%. So I took an image from his website put it as my phone's wallpaper. I hung it up at work and my office at home, but most importantly I flashed it in my head during every damn point of every damn game I played that night.

I still lost like four out of five games, but I played better than and tougher than I've been. I finally put the plug in. I was flying around the court like it was a tournament game. I held my opponent's score down and kept breaking his serve. He was getting frustrated and tired. I was on fire. I was out of breath and tired, but kept pushing past it. Kept going for that 120 and when I took a W. It felt real good! I wanted another one. I knew Rob would be pissed off (he hides it pretty well) and I think I lost more for wanting another win than to sticking with the 120%. It's a new concept, so I can let it go this time.

My problem has been I'm either on fire or I'm burnt out. 120 kept me focused on what I can do to win instead of just playing with intensity. There's no real quarters in Racquetball, but I usually have like one or two matches before I'm not playing well. Most tournaments are one or two day events, so by the next round I'm usually mentally and physically done.

After the last game, we shook hands and patted backs. It was like Rob hadn't seen me in a long time. As I walked to get some water, I turned and asked for another game. My body didn't want another game. It wanted to go home. Rob's racquet was already in his bag. So I just laughed it off, but mentally I wanted to try for another W. That 120 was still flashing and I felt like I can take more.

Anyway I wanted respect for myself that I'm going to stop my history of negative talk and negative play. I'm often not a negative person on the court...I tend to keep it inside and when it rises up it does so subtly. I've seen people way worse than me, but what I often do is enough to derail me and it needs to stop. For me, flashing that 120 was enough to keep that part of my brain off balance and quiet. When things are going well, that little voice has nothing to say!

I admitted to Rob after that my life hasn't been easy past few years, but there's nothing I can do about that. What I can do is do my best from here on. To work hard every day on what I want. To work hard to play my best and to win. I think that's key, doesn't matter what the field is. We need to show up to win. Anything else is not 120 thinking and not only does it open the door to that negative little voice (What Steven Pressfield calls Resistance) but we just invited it to the party. Win or nothing. 120 or nothing.

Yes, I'll be the first to say sometimes winning is just not happening. I remember playing doubles against someone that was like #4 in the world. It was an exercise in futility since everything was like an inch of the ground and rocketing past me well over a 100 MPH. The outcome doesn't matter. The effort needs to be there. It's not 120% of a Win. A match can only be a win or a loss. There's no 120% winning or losing. No 18 point games. The only thing that can be 120 is your effort.

I know flashing 120 in my head is not enough. I still need to work harder on getting in shape, keeping my mechanics up, doing more cardio, and playing more often...but I now believe it starts with expecting 120 of what you have. Can't go back and give 120% of yesterday. Can't go tomorrow and say I'll give 120 then. No. All you can do is give 120 now!

07/08/16 The Thursday Racquetball Crowd

Thursday is not one of the key days of the week at Busch for Racquetball. Monday and Wednesday are, but Tuesday and Thursday are my best nights to play. I haven't done two a week yet, I think once a week is starting to be a little more consistent. Maybe I can sneak in two soon.

Anyway Rob M. showed up and we played a few games then we started bringing in more people. First off was Ali and we played cut throat, then we brought in Carolina for doubles, but Ali had to leave. Both played well, I think Carolina had a pretty good foundation and a lot of heart. So can basically teach anyone anything, but to have that drive to keep trying and hanging in there...that's key to anything.

Then we saw Rob and Ron. Ron hasn't played doubles in like twenty years, so we reintroduced him and his partner. Ron showed some pretty good shot power, but Rob and I won. I had "analyzed" them before we started playing and shared my analysis with Rob. He was a little skeptical and brought up a good point that we sometimes we think we're better off the court than on it, but I have played lots of doubles and based on Rob's skillset and my rusty one. I kind of knew the outcome. By the time we finished the game, I had to leave, they wanted to run it back. I just said that's what Next Thursday is for. ;-)

Was fun. I'm glad Rob and I took the initative and invited people playing by themselves to play with us. Years ago when I first started if it wasn't for Mike Trachtenberg asking, "Do you want to play with me?" and then proceeding to beat us for months playing hand ball vs. our racquets. We wouldn't have learned as much as we did and wouldn't of had a good friend and lots of stories to tell.

Racquetball, to me, is a social sport, you can't really play unless you have an opponent. It's the most fun when people are pushing themselves to the limit. So hopefully Rob and I continue building the racquetball community at Busch.

06/11/16 Establishing Consistency.

Haven't had much consistency in my life past couple of years. I lost my Mom. Six months to the day, I lost my Dad. I've changed jobs after about sixteen years. I've packed up a moved to another house. Racquetball has been inconsistent and so have my businesses. Now I've been in the new job for about six months, about a month or two in the new place, and finally getting a little settled.

I was playing some racquetball with my friend, Rob, on Thursday and it was great to catch up. He was telling me about the Ladder/League and stuff. Then it came up about playing next week and if I wanted people to show up. I needed to show up consistently. It was a night for euphemisms

05/17/16 Happy 11th Birthday Jason!

Recently moved to another house and dealing with limited or no Internet for the past few weeks and all the problems that comes with it. Wish we did more for Jason on his birthday got him some gifts he wanted and my wife made him a strawberry cake with donuts and strawberries on top.

I'm very lucky to have two boys and Jason has been a great son. I wish he would not be so hard on himself over stupid stuff. I would also like to see him push himself and to dream big dreams. Seems like I always have to be on his case to do his homework and stuff, but I love him with all my heart. Looking forward to doing more coding with him and yes...even racquetball.

Eleven years is pretty amazing. Just goes to show how fast life moves. Looking back it seems like a blink. I am trying harder to make the present moments count more. Love you Jason.

04/10/16 Drilling and Killing

I started playing again a few weeks ago and I sucked. I sucked really bad. I doubted everything, but suffered through it. No, it wasn't one of those times I eventually triumphed. No complete failure. On Good Friday, work let me out early. So I went to the courts and just drilled by myself for like two hours. I practiced my down the lines, serves, lobs, etc. On my lines I had to do 50 correct on both sides and it took forever, but the end result I played and moved a lot better. I wish I could do that every day.

I'm very lucky to have two boys and Jason has been a great son. I wish he would not be so hard on himself over stupid stuff. I would also like to see him push himself and to dream big dreams. Seems like I always have to be on his case to do his homework and stuff, but I love him with all my heart. Looking forward to doing more coding with him and yes...even racquetball.

Eleven years is pretty amazing. Just goes to show how fast life moves. Looking back it seems like a blink. I am trying harder to make the present moments count more. Love you Jason.

04/10/16 Drilling and Killing

I started playing again a few weeks ago and I sucked. I sucked really bad. I doubted everything, but suffered through it. No, it wasn't one of those times I eventually triumphed. No complete failure. On Good Friday, work let me out early. So I went to the courts and just drilled by myself for like two hours. I practiced my down the lines, serves, lobs, etc. On my lines I had to do 50 correct on both sides and it took forever, but the end result I played and moved a lot better. I wish I could do that every day.

Part of me, wishes I had practiced first. I think I would have enjoyed those first few games more. I remember when people that were regulars would drop off and then come back after a few months. They would either go full hog (HAM) ;-) and try to play like they used to and disappear or I can see the misery on their faces as they realized it just not working...then they drop off for good.

My friend, Joe Curl, may have the right idea. He's practicing first. Of course, my way isn't so bad. It served as a catalyst, when I was getting destroyed left, right, and center. I was really angry. Not with myself or my opponents. I was just angry that I slipped that far. Not sure I would have spent two hours drilling if I hasn't got my ass kicked! Also having players make comments or do easy serves just fanned the flames.

Have a couple of things like taking an antibotic that weaken ligaments or tendons (just what I need) and moving in a couple of weeks. So I can feel the rust building back up. At least in the new house, there might be room for a rebounder, which would be great to just keep working on swing mechanics. Maybe just maybe the boys would be interested in it too.

So will take it easy until this medicine is out of my system and the move is done. Then will reclaim my Fridays. I wish I had another day during the week, but we'll see. A couple of things need to change.

12/02/15 Happy Birthday Matt

Matt's 7th birthday was yesterday and we went to Friendlys where he made his own sundae after dinner. Got him a lot of the toys he wanted. He's a good boy and likes to talk to everyone. Anyway love you boy!

Starting a new job in January and only working one of them instead of two. My wife is focusing more on her business and will be working less too, so hope we can focus more on family, racquetball, growing businesses, and having meaningful work in the new year!

11/09/15 Finally Scratched!

Played some racquetball with Leigh and Rob over at Busch (Cook campus you are dead to me!) and I had a blast. Of course, I forgot my braces so to say I was playing tenative was an understatement. I yelled at myself, "Play or you are going to get hurt." So eventually opened up and started to shake off some of the rust. I shared a couple of things I learned from some of the 20 somethings at work. Asked Leigh when he was going to get HAM. They both looked at me like I had two heads. So had to stop and explain (Hard as a Motherf...) and then explained salty, which to my limited understanding means don't get upset that you're losing, etc.

Anyway was very happy to play. Maybe I can play again on Wednesday and make it twice in one month. Haven't been as sore as I thought I would be. Maybe it's the daily protein powder? The almost daily stretching? Whatever it is, I'm grateful.

09/23/15 Better but still Stressed!

Had a chance to play racquetball a few weeks ago and didn't take it. Have another chance to play tonight, but I am recovering from shingles. Yep I got shingles at the early age of 43. It really sucks, it was so important to have a routine and friends to play racquetball with. Now it's like trying to dig a hole at the beach, there's always some sand that falls back in.

Between a full time and part time job, the kids, my wife's business, estate matters for my parents, property management, and a host of other things. I just started feeling like crap and I thought I had hurt myself wrestling with the boys or something, but that tender spot turned into blisters and wham classic case of shingles.

Some people who know my story say I am fortunate to have an estate to process. Yes it's kind of already changed my life in a positive way, but it has been a hard road to get there. Still dealing with the loss of my parents and don't have to look far for a laundry list of things to do. Sometimes it's crushing and other times I need to turn away from things just to have a moment of peace.

I know, I have a great chance to move things forever forward in my life. Also in the process of changing things for the better. Often change is slow and it's easy to think nothing is happening, but sometimes all we need to is think and do the next little thing and move the boulder a little closer. As long as it is moving...I can feel good about my progress.

05/13/15 Happy 10th Birthday Jason!! (Edited 5/15/15)

Been a hard few days remembering my parents. Dad's first birthday and the first Mother's Day without my Mom. It's real easy to get depressed especially working crazy hours and other things going on, but nice to see the smile on Jason's face for his birthday.

Hate to admit it, but he's already better at certain games than I am. Still have my Street Fighter title, for the time being, and we haven't spent much time playing racquetball. Yes, I know. I keep promising.

I played on Tuesday with an old friend, Frank Cai, and we had a blast catching up over at Busch. Sadly Cook/Douglas is no longer an option. They reduced racquetball to two courts that you can't reserve, so what's the point?

Anyway enjoy playing Minecraft with Jason whenever we have the chance, since he has a few regular friends he plays XBOX-360 with. I'm usually working, so I appreciate the time I can spent with my boys. Hope to change a few things in the next few months to improve that. Love you Jason.

 

12/01/14 Happy Birthday Matt!!

He's changed a lot this year. Going into Kindergarten and playing more X-Box with his brother. He is still very friendly and not shy despite the efforts of his big brother. Find myself losing more patience with the boys as they grow up. As some people have said, this is the easy part. Been worried about my Dad and his health, so even my son's birthday is shadowed by that to some degree.

Tried to play racquetball but the Cook courts were closed. Told the Director there that he tore out my heart. He replied well they are doing that across the country. Whatever they systematically took out racquetball. Big old f'ing thank you. Anyway sorry for the rant. Happy Birthday Matt. Love you.

11/25/14 Good and Bad News

Good news. I practiced some racquetball a few weeks ago and it bittersweet. Great feeling to play again and hit around with almost no discomfort or pain. Of course that joyous occassion was overshadowed by Cook/Douglas almost destroying racquetball. They went from five courts to two. The fate of some of the courts remains a mystery, but they are covered up. So I assume the worst. The floor was really slippery, so I didn't run around too much. My wife also wants to do some drills...don't know when we are going to have time to make that happen.

The first day I wanted to go back, 10/30/14, I had to take my Dad to hospital and he's been there and a rehab facility since. Lots of other issues and problems outside of that I need to keep private, but all I'll say I wish I could only worry about his care. That happened a little over eleven weeks since I lost my Mom (so not even three months), so as I said this year really sucked.

10/11/14 Discharged!

My surgeon discharged me the other day and I think I had one more visit of PT that we didn't square away in time, so I'm done. I get fitted for my brace on Tuesday, really thought it would be waiting for me at the Doctor's office, but no. I've waited this long, I can wait a few more days, weeks, whatever. Need to get back into the habit of working out and maybe drilling if I ever hope to recover from this crash landing. Hopefully I can hit the ground running with my two braces and play relatively pain free. At almost 43, I totally understand pain-free is not an option.

It's easy to not do what you are supposed to do like drill, excercise, and train. Seems like the second you make a hole the crap surrounding the hole just starts to fill it up. Need to start some new habits and keep working at them until it's automatic. Holding a racquet and hitting a racquetball again with old friends is my goal. Returning back to Leagues and Tournaments is down the road a bit.

10/02/14 Racquetball

2014 had some good, but mostly bad points. Tearing my ACL and meniscus...BAD. Taking my mom to the ER, watching her get a little better, then putting her on hospice, and watching her pass away...was the worst experience of my life so far. Don't want to go any deeper into that darkness. Could use some happy notes to finish out the year. A small light at the end of the tunnel...is my possible return to racquetball! I don't want to celebrate my return too quickly. I could have a minscius tear in my right knee. After spending close to ten months rehabbing my left knee. I don't want any more downtime. I also want to play at 100%. So we'll see.

10/02/14 Happy Birthday in Heaven Ma

Looking back at the last entry. My mom passed away four days later and today would have been my Mom's 84 birthday. The choices I had to make, pretty much alone, we're dreadful. It's hard to look back and think of the good times before hospice and her before deminitia. Growing up had my fair share of crap, but my Mom was always on my side. Yeah she was over-protective, but from all the places I could have crashed my life. I don't regret it.

Anyway a lot of things I wished I had done better or forced. Forced sounds like a bad word, but sometimes things need to change and sometimes there's only one way to do it. Gotta make something happen.

08/08/14 My Mom

My Mom has been on hospice care since about the middle of July, so been coordinating things, seeing my parents, giving family and friends updates. The whirlwind of emotions has been insane, but I was able to keep a level head and made some tough decisions by myself, since my Dad couldn't deal with it very well. Still can't. I don't know how the old pre-racquetball me would of handled it. Not to say I am a mountain of mental toughness fortitude or anything, just saying that I was weaker back then. I let a lot of verbal abuse get to me and lead into a downward spiral of self-doubt, self-hatred, etc. Now I just realize it's almost all noise, almost all BS, and almost all of it bounces off.

My Mom has always lifted me above the crap I had to grow up with. She was loving, compassionate, and maybe too over protective, but looking back at all the places I could have stumbled and ruined my life. She did a good job. I wouldn't change her for anything. Anyway love you ma. I'll make you as comfortable as possible.

06/29/14 Getting There!

Sorry I haven't been around much being pretty busy between work, the family, and other projects. It's hard to find a consistent time to work on anything racquetball related. Sad to say as of today, it's been one hundred and forty two days since I played racquetball. My ACL recovery is going well and my Physical Therapist (My Wife) at Ambient Rehabilitation LLC has been doing a great job. Most people at work can't believe I had my surgery in April and walking around as well as I am. Next week I start jogging, so one step closer to the courts.

Not sure what I am going to find when I get back. I thought more of my racquetball buds would be keeping in touch, but they are busy...out of sight, out of mind. Pretty soon it'll be like yeah there was this guy who ran this awesome league. What was his name again? I want to be playing again soon, but I need to seriously focus on better projects. Also need to take Enchanted Quill Press LLC to zero (near death) and in a new direction.

05/13/14 Happy 9th Birthday Jason

It really goes so fast. Thinking my older son, Jason, is almost ten years old. I can see his confidence growing and I think Karate has been a good influence on him. Anyway was really hard to get a good picture of Jason, so had to settle for a screen shot of a video.

Wish he was more into reading and writing. We play Minecraft together sometimes and Skylanders when his brother doesn't want to play. Hopefully we can salvage some of the Fall to practice some racquetball when I'm cleared of this ACL mess.

Love you Jason.

04/30/14 Working on the Third Week

Off crutches which is great and back to driving and work. Been working as hard as I can during Physical Therapy. Been walking without my brace, side steps, walking backward, doing exercises, and working the stationary bike which is probably the hardest exercise. My brace keeps slipping down and needs almost constant adjustment.

No word when I can start playing again. Have trouble raising my knee higher than just walking, but one step at a time. So far I can bent past 90 degrees by myself. Besides racquetball I can't wait to walk normally and ride bikes with my boys.

04/10/14 Almost One Week After

Been laying in bed watching movies and taking it easy. Had my sutures out today, but still taking pain medicine and my upper leg hurts. Been taking over the counter pain meds also.

My bud, Leigh, took me the Doctor since my wife was working. Getting in and out his car was a challenge and hope whatever needs to get reabsorbed does soon.

Getting really frustrated and short fused with my family. Sometimes they don't deserve it. So hopefully can get stronger and be in a lot less pain soon. Also wanted to thank my Mother-in-Law for helping out with boys and me during this time.

04/03/14 Day Before Surgery

Anyway nervous about tomorrow. Kind of stuck now can't play, can't walk fast, can't run after my kids. So if I was like 65 maybe those things wouldn't be as important, but at 42...I'm not done with racquetball or playing with my boys.

So hope after all this I'm back to playing 100% after six months. Spent the last few years playing without an ACL and afraid of hurting my knees. Losing to players sucked and losing without being able to go all out is terrible. Sure some people thought they one up'ed me, no they did not! Sucks the one day I didn't wear my brace, boom I get seriosuly hurt.

03/23/14 No Way Out.

Well been having pre-op PT for a few weeks now and can honestly say we're not going back to playing anytime soon. Even afraid of shifting in bed the wrong way for risk of hurting my knee.

Some people have told me horror stories like re-tearing an ACL from just throwing a frisbee. Others saw that the pain comes and goes. The worst...that my racquetball days are over.

Been in that afraid to get hurt stage since my first injury. That's a sad way to play without being able to go all out and play my best.

03/02/14 ACL Tear

Well I tore my ACL a few years ago and tore my minicus I guess recently since my knee swelled. I have to meet the surgeon to discuss options. I tried to play about three weeks afterward and that didn't work.

It probably would have happened with the brace since it was the wrong type. Anyway don't think I'll be playing racquetball anytime soon...maybe a year and a half.

02/24/14 Possible PCL Tear

Going for an MRI on Wednesday to show how bad my knee is. Basically my wife and my Sports Medicine Doctor have said the knee shifts more than my right knee and that causes the instability and pain. It popped back into place the last Thursday and has been a lot better, but not taking any chances. I saw some PCL braces online and they are different than what I have worn. So it might have helped actually wearing any brace, but I think it could have happened anyway.

Anyway the short of it, didn't follow my own advice. I often tell people coming back to the game to take it easy and almost all of them go all out and never return. I was dumb to think I could play all day at a Tourney after so long and was even dumber not wearing a brace. So hopefully I can see my wife for Physical Therapy and avoid surgery.

02/06/14 Ready or Not? Not.

Well if it wasn't for George asking me to play the Rutgers tourney I probably would have made up some excuse not to play. I'm glad I played, but I was dumb. I should have worn my braces from the start and aggravated an old injury.

Writing this on my iPad so its hard to type and collect my thoughts. Was great seeing old and new friends playing racquetball. I plan on hitting the courts tomorrow and see how the knee holds.

01/02/14 Happy New Year

In some ways good riddance to 2013. It was a pretty bad League last year with two long term friends almost ruining the league and having to be ejected from the group. I was pretty damn angry since they should have understood our struggles and we finally had some acceptance and even help from the staff. Well we basically lost all that ground and we're back at zero practically. Add the fact one of them wanted to bring it the highest levels of Rutgers until I wrote back that I was going to get a lawyer. Anyway it sucked and it sucked for the players involved as well.

12/01/13 Happy Birthday Matt

Keeping the tradition of posting pics of my boys birthdays. Matt had his 5th birthday today. He's in Pre-K and doing well. So he was so excited to have cake and some presents.

08/05/13 10th Racquetball League Tournament Ends

Long time between when it started and about when it ended. Sure we could have finished it in a weekend if we had everyone available at the same time and location for a weekend. Anyway either way it's done and it feels good to have another League in the books and more free time for more projects.

Just too many projects and too little time to work on them. John Acuff in his book says to be selfish at 5 AM and for a couple of days I managed to get out of bed (without an alarm clock) at 5 AM and work for like an hour. Problem is consistently in bed by 11:45/12:00, which means I am nearly a Zombie later in the day. Need to fall asleep earlier for this to work.

We had a pretty good pool of talent this league and some new faces which is great. Overall we had a good League. I need lay down some harsh laws about bullying staff for next time. There's always new territory to be mapped out in the League. Anyway we're done, got through the tournament rounds, had our party, and have everything in the books.

06/25/13 10th Racquetball League Tournament Begins

Tonight we started the round robin and single elimination tournament draws. Exciting times and the Elite draw has a lot of good players.

06/15/13 RU Players Get Better Rep!

Had a friend/customer of mine Joe stop by for some racquetball last night at Busch. Despite the cats and dogs rain, we had like four people show up. After rotating around singles and being told to get out at 7 PM. Joe said that we were a pretty good group of players. Having an outsider rate our game was pretty cool, since I've been away from the racquetball tournament scene for a number of years already. Yes, I'm still following that Dave Ramsey plan. Anyway was a good boost for our group since we've often been the bottom rung group.

The Travel League was a great way to get people playing each other and establishing some deep seeded competition. Maybe even some strong dislike of a particular group. Well as Bill Serafin said once there always has to be a villian.

06/01/13 Man I miss Cook

Cook being closed for the entire Summer really sucks. I can play over on Busch campus, but I don't think anyone really wants to play since they already played twice that week at the ladder for a few hours and probably don't have much left by Friday and the gym closes at 7. Tuesday is right inbetween the two Ladder nights. So just trying to make the best of it. I still don't like the Busch courts since they are panels, but the glass backwall should lead some interesting video and maybe that can intice some people to come out. Also need to let some Busch players know of my situation and maybe we can reconnect and play.

Still can't do Monday and Wednesday that's just how my schedule is with the boys' after-care and wife's work schedule. Oh well played a few games with Ben last night and introduced some of the doubles rules to two newbies who were playing squash in a racquetball court. WTF! Sorry I could not bear witness to that racquetball travesty and do nothing!

I will give Busch this, they have a good population of new players. The only problem, I don't think they are being consistently lead to a better Racquetball place.

06/01/13 League Notify App

Past couple of mornings been gathering ideas to help finish this league and future leagues. I would love for my business to take off, quit Rutgers, and have to find another way to run Leagues, but I need to look at reality. It might be some more time before I can do any of those things (Cue the "Sad but True" Metallica riff.). I read a great book Punch Fear in the Face, Escape Average and Do Work that Matters by Jon Acuff and I realized a lot of the things I've been doing for a long time deal with fear, false entitlement, and lot of other things that kept me "Average". I enjoy running Leagues, Programming, Racquetball, and Stringing. To put improvements on the shelf and avoid doing them just because they don't make money, interfere with other projects, and some negative future that may not happen is just being stupid and wasting time.

05/17/13 "I lost to Rob!?"

I don't know been seeking more fun with racquetball lately. Tonight played a couple of games and was laughing with Rob as he complains that people get upset when they lose to him as if he's that bad. Anyway have known Rob for a number of years and he has a pretty solid game. So One Lee and I were having fun saying, "I lost some points to Rob."

I played pretty well tonight thanks to pain relievers and I'm sure my foot tomorrow is going to be on fire. Anyway was nice to cut loose, have some fun, and earn some W's. Sadly I looked down at last Meanstreak racquet and noticed the frame was severely cracked. After so many years of faithful service they both bought it. I had to borrow an Ektelon O3 Red, thanks Mike, and did pretty good with that. So not sure if I can get a new stick by Tuesday, so we'll see.

05/13/13 Happy 8th Birthday Jason!

Jason's 8th BirthdayMy wife and I were looking at the past pictures here of Jason. Man the time really goes so fast. I get so caught up things that when I look back...there's only sadness at the wasted time. Yep it is very easy to be completely busy and accomplish nothing.

Jason has played Minecraft on iOS, Kindle, Xbox 360, and now PC. Pretty fun to share the game with him and teach him whatever I know about it. Sometimes I catch myself being a little too hard on the boy to excel at school. It's bad enough my wife and I have to both work and expect there's enough time to accomplish everything.

Update 5/14/13, should never really blog tired. Anyway tough balance to keep him focused, following rules, and not pushing too far. Anyway love you, Jason, keep learning and having fun.

12/18/12 Good Talent This League.

Been playing some of the group lately that has signed up for the League and looks like #10 is going to be a pretty good League with mostly higher level players filling out the ranks.

Played some doubles with my partner, Leigh, and it's been a while since we faced a good doubles pair. Tonight we had some pretty close games but lost and that's ok. To say I have a lot on my mind would be an understatement. Lots of work to do and if the work doesn't get done then the project can't sustain itself. If it can't sustain itself then it's going to exhaust a lot of resources rather quickly. So need to play the other game really hard.

So that's it for 2012 from RU Racquetball. Some people were joking around about the supposed apocalypse on the 21st, one of the players made an interesting point if all these people believe the Zombie Apocalypse is coming then it might happen like in that The Secret movie. I basically joked it's going to usher in a new age of Racquetball. I hope it at least ushers in a new path for my life and the life of my family.

12/08/12 Tenth Racquetball League Starting Up!

Ten Leagues over the span of ten years is pretty cool. I wish participation was up and for that part the money, but we have a pretty good group and still manage to get some work out of the software and website I wrote a long time ago.

My wife and I are starting a business together and that's going to be an incredible priority and require a ton of work to even have a chance, so might need some help from people to keep the League moving and in the books.

12/01/12 Happy Birthday Matt. (2/2)

Four. Was hard to get a decent picture with Matt opening a present wth his brother Jason jumping all over the place. My boys are pretty much polar opposites with Matt being the more outspoken of the two and always looking to be in the middle of things. I've told Jason on more than one occassion that he's going to make his brother tougher by giving him a hard time and so far it's been true.

Anyway Happy Birthday Matt. Love you and very proud of you.

Wish I could take the boys to racquetball more often but there's always something going on. Some place to go and some place to see. There was a juniors thing in Warren that I wanted to take the boys to, but had to meet a tree person for a couple of down trees and another company to fix my attic fan and take care of some other minor damage. Overall we were very fortunate with the storm and hope people are recovering as fast as possible.

12/01/12 Slow Improvements

Been working on changing a couple of things. Been pretty good about not eating junk snacks at work and reducing my soda intake. Also been lifting at the gym and trying to get my two times of racquetball in per week. Often the harder I go after something the worse it becomes, so making--what I hope-- are a couple of lasting changes that pay off in time. Birthdays always make me think about my life and my family. So hope I can lose some weight by my birthday on the 28th.

Weights seem to be helping me ramp up my MPH on some of my shots. Just from the sound in the court it sounds pretty good. If I can get my radar gun working correctly again, I'll probably be pushing the 105+ mark on some shots.

11/11/12 Hard to Stay Focused.

There's an opportunity cost when staying focused. Can't be totally focused on one thing and still manage to do another. One of the things I decided to focus on this month is a 50,000 word novel. Think I'm close to 2,000 words and I might need to consider breaking my focus on it if I can't get to 25,000 in about four days. Another thing that requires focus is MoneyBuckets 2.0 and yet another is our tenth racquetball League. Not to mention family, business, work, and racquetball. Starting to see the novel as being a very big commitment, but it's also something that's been cooking for a number of years.

The alternative is to work on things in spits and spurts and never really get close to completing anything. So going to push hard this week and try to get the word count up to 25K. If I can somehow manage that then I can push another 25K out and get the novel done. Then can work on other projects while editing and shaping the novel. It's been great to be writing again and looking forward to publishing another book.

08/04/12 You Show Up!

I emailed a co-worker when he asked me for a racquetball lesson that the first and most important lesson in racquetball is showing up. I posted it on Twitter and got a retweet which was cool. Anyway jotted down a poem this morning and while my son prompts me every five seconds about his lego city I'll post what I have.

You show up...
	When you're afraid.
	When you're hurt.
	When you're embarrassed.
	When you're tired.
You show up...
	When that voice in your head yells...
		"You suck!"
		"You're terrible!"
		"You'll never get any better!"
	When everyone tells you why are you wasting your time...
You Show Up!

Copyright 2012 by Joseph Delgado.

My warm up routine has been pretty silly lately. Been doing the dynamic stretch called the monster walk. Basically involves raising each leg straight out to waist height and then alternating. The short of it, my hamstrings have been acting up again a few months after taking off my brace. For some stupid reason I've been short changing myself on stretching and it was bound to happen. I usually play until I need to leave for home and then home is usually a mess until the boys go to sleep. Then I either hop on the computer or spend time with the wife and off to sleep.

Been playing about twice a week again, but weight is still a big issue. Just need to make some eating changes and hit the gym a couple of times per week. Hitting the gym has had a negative impact so far on my game, but working to get stronger and that's worth a loss on a pickup game or two.

05/14/12 Happy Birthday Jason

Jason 7thYesterday was Jason's 7th Birthday. Been posting pictures here of my boys since they were babies, so might as well continue with tradition. Wish I could do better for my boys and certain things like work need to be changed for good. Anyway Jason's been taking Karate and he's been doing well with his yellow belt. He's also been playing video games and working pretty hard in first grade. Think he'll do very well in creative writing and maybe game design. Since he's been making up games since he started talking. Think we're almost ready to hit the outdoor courts again, but I'll need to take him to see Battleship first. Probably not the best movie out right now, but he loves the game. Next big thing is Pokemon so he's always liked strategy games like Chess, Plants vs. Zombies, and other games.

So Happy Birthday Jason, Daddy loves you.

04/07/12 Still Here.

Been a long time since I blogged here…December 1, 2011. To my friends, everything is fine. To my haters, same. I've been giving the second group more time than they deserve lately. I finished it with something that Eric Thomas wrote in his book. He basically thanked his haters because it made him work harder. I guess that's all there is to it, the haters are only going to hate and to try to convince them otherwise is practically impossible and a complete waste of time. So need to improve and keep moving where I need to go for my friends, family, and my company.

Wrapping up another racquetball League and dropped the ball on a couple of occassions and recovered. I think it had to do with a lack of documentation and systems. I'm also wrapping up my time at Rutgers, but that's a long story and I think it needs to happen for my development and my future. I don't regret all the time I spent there, it helped bring my two wonderful children into the world. Ultimately it's no longer in my best interests to stay there.

I know, I've said this before. The difference this time around, I told my boss about eight weeks ago about my decision. Now things need to move on my part to follow through. After thirteen years, I might need to mourn that part of myself for a while and there's a few people I'll miss and a lot more that I won't.

I haven't been in the racquetball circuit around Jersey for a long time and when I leave Rutgers I'll be racquetball clubless. Well can always drop $10 and play with the guys or find another club and run into old friends and of course some old haters.


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