Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Week 13 (2013)

Week 13: March 14-30

Badminton: 4 / 5
School: 3 / 5
Misc: 4 / 5
Overall: 3.67 / 5

Productive week as all of our group's effort came together for the final copy of our Creatine Supplementation paper and presentation on Thursday. It was also nice to have Friday (and Monday) off so I can get caught up with some studies, but it was a real downer that I did badly on my Neuroanatomy exam. The UBC x ClearOne Tournament was this weekend, so it was nice to be in the tournament environment again as well :)

Song of the Week: Kingdom Hearts Piano Collections - 2nd Mov. Kairi - Andante Sostenuo. I tried playing this piece a long time ago but the end was kind of a turnoff because it was so hard to play. Now I'm trying to get back into it and I've forgotten some things, but still remember some parts, so basically it's just a huge mess :) The song is from the video game 'Kingdom Hearts' (somewhat of a cross between Final Fantasy and Disney characters, with original characters mixed into the franchise as well). This is the theme of Kairi, the female character in the game that the lead character kinda has a thing for. But stuff happens and I like to think of it as a song of enduring or patience. Beautifully crafted piece, though I don't know if I will ever play it as well as the recording. Maybe someday :)

Let's start with the rant about my Neuroanatomy midterm. Well... I really don't know what happened. It's not like I didn't study for it, but I think I just didn't know what to expect. I ended up studying too much extra stuff and spent too much time typing things out of the textbook to learn which weren't even tested. I suppose I'm either losing touch with what I need to know in school, or still trying to recover from being out of school for so long. I feel I'm a bit mixed up with what I need to know for the exam, and what may be interesting or of practical use to me. I love learning about things that I can relate to, but I guess I process things differently. I apologize if you expected this to be about Neuroanatomy, but I will be talking about exam writing. If the TA is marking my exam, it would really not matter so much what the prof is saying, to the extent that he provides what I need to know, but the answers I give should be catered toward the TA because he is marking. Therefore, it would be much more interesting to figure out what the TA is thinking, or asking the TA questions, if he is the sole marker of the midterms. This would be the second time I have been killed by TA's because they are the ones marking. They have a marking scheme, leaving less to the imagination, and it's also based on their own judgement. But that's just life... sometimes, things just don't work out. It's not that I didn't try, but I won't give up either. I'll see what I can do on this final, and at least I can try to fix a few things. My answers weren't detailed enough and I suppose I misinterpreted a major set of questions (got pretty much a page of zeroes). For the final, I'll make sure I work on giving more detail, and spend more time on knowing different types of neuro exam techniques for various scenarios.

In my Muscle Physiology class, we had our group presentation on creatine supplementation on Thursday. My part was pretty simple, despite an idea I came up with. I decided to present an analogy to my section on osmolarity, hypertrophy, and side effects and it actually turned out pretty well. I actually got a little nervous, though I'm not too sure why. Maybe I haven't been competing enough lately :P Regardless, there were two points in the presentation where I had to present, so after almost dying in the beginning, I regained my composure, put my flash cards away, and just winged it. Fortunately, it worked well enough! A big thanks to my group for putting everything together and doing a great job on their parts! We had about 50-60 references for our paper, so we really did cover a lot. After doing the paper, I think I might try supplementation, although I will wait until after my finals. There aren't really any side effects if you're healthy, except for some minor case studies here and there. So, if you are an athlete who could use a bit of extra power, then maybe try it out and see how it works. Remember though, there's about a 20% chance that someone could be a non-responder, so there is a little gamble. Also, it's probably not useful for endurance exercise, as the oxidative phosphorylation mechanism via the electron transport chain is much more effective than the phosphocreatine shuttle system. I won't get too detailed right now, but please ask away if you have any questions.

(Source: Me) Wearing the UBC x C1 Tournament shirt!
So, for my Easter long weekend, I participated in the UBC x ClearOne tournament. I entered singles and mixed (with Carmen), and there were quite a lot of matches to play. Overall, I think there's some good players out there, even though a lot of them play for fun. In the singles, I had a fairly easy time because we play so many matches in a short period of time that most of my opponents were really tired after the first set. Actually, I was starting to really feel the tiredness in the final, but it was worse for my opponents as I'm sure they're not used to playing so many matches. Regardless, I will definitely reconsider playing singles next time and let everyone else duke it out. As my level of singles isn't that great, I still hope people learned a few things here and there so they can improve their games. It's not that I want people to go out and train and compete more, I just think it's nice to learn something, practice it, and have a goal to look up to :) Mixed was a whole different story. I think I pretty much went all out and had to use my tactics to get the upper-hand on some teams. Mixed was a lot tougher than singles, even though it was my event. Carmen did well to hold her own, but it was probably helpful that I kept instructing her to do things. This lesson always comes back to haunt me in that "I told you so" kind of way, because it's just a sign that things may still work out if you don't give up and try your best. Trying your best isn't always about running faster, jumping higher, or smashing harder: sometimes it just means repeating instructions to your partner constantly to keep them in the game. Even though you may have said it a million times, to forgo a chance to speak up means that you didn't give it your best. Anyhow, some really good games and again, it's nice to see a good level of recreational players out there! I think it'd be nice to do some recreational player clinics, not so much about forcing them to do drills and stuff, but mainly just to answer some quick questions so that they can make tactical changes that will add to their games. A big thank you to UBC Badminton Club for organizing the tournament and ClearOne Badminton for hosting! It was a good weekend :)

(Source: Me)
(Source: Me)
Victory dinner w/ Carmen and Jiwoo at Gangnam (yes, really) Korean BBQ
(Source: Me) With Carmen!
(Source: Me) Okay...
(Source: Carmen) Victory Pinkberry!
Now that the tournament is over, my forearm is not in good shape. I suppose it's overusing my forearm muscles (especially the forearm flexors) to excessive levels, so it's actually quite sore and I really need to rest it and make sure it gets better for Peru. Some things I will try is to minimize using grip strength outside of badminton, so no more playing piano for a while (not that it's very useful anyway), and definitely no 1-3 RM deadlifts, which are probably responsible to that additional strain on the forearm. I may have to limit rows and TRX exercises as well, so I guess I'll be doing a lot of leg work this next week. Hopefully, the tapering period will aid in the recovery as well. My injury has not been officially diagnosed, but I'm pretty sure it's Golfer's Elbow, or medial epicondylitis. Obviously, the badminton is the key cause of the injury, but I think it may be due a bit to the shoulder, as I've had shoulder problems previously. The shoulders have been a bit better, but it's probably because I'm using more of my forearm to play. Basically, your body is really good at cheating for you, so technique is important, fixing imbalances is important, and recovering properly from injuries is very important. Oh well, hopefully heat, compression, and topical analgesics will tie me over this week. I might take an additional day off to rest my arm and maybe study for the upcoming finals coming up in a few weeks!

(Source: Me) UBC x ClearOne Tournament - MD
So that's it for this week! I know I'm late again, and it's getting pretty bad. I might need to make this biweekly because I don't have the time to write as carefully as I want to. I don't want to say anything bad, or wrong, and I would like to research and source my information properly, so either I write less per week, or more per two weeks. I don't know yet, I guess I'll see what happens in a week :P Sorry for rushing through this week!!

Thanks for visiting!

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