Tony Fremarek’s Fractional Update of the day

In this video post, I discuss the need to plan for any type of business disaster.  What happens if you get sick or injured for a prolonged period of time.  Who will run your business?  Do you have proper insurance coverage to make sure that this does not ruin you?  Have you reviewed a plan with key people in your organization so that they understand what they will need to do and how to “Step Up” to keep the business running.  Contact A Fractional CFO today to discuss this and other business issues. www.afractionalcfo.com

A Fractional CFO Update 02.15.2021

Tony Fremarek’s Thoughts on Exercising…Why the HELL aren’t you exercising? Part 2.

Home Gym

So the home gym started with the Bowflex weights and the adjustable bench. For anyone looking to start a weight training regiment at home, in my opinion, this is a fabulous start. It gave me enough weight to do chest exercises (bench pressing dumbbells is harder than a straight bar, so 90 lbs on each arm allows you to do a lot), back exercises, arms, shoulders, even legs. You would be amazed at the workouts you can put together with just dumbbells. This lasted for a number of years, as part of the process we updated the cardio equipment, and added a spin bike. I love to cycle, however finding the time, and having the weather cooperate was always a challenge. So the spin bike with clips for the pedals was a great addition. The Keiser M3i is the bike we have. For all the years of the home gym, it existed in our enclosed loft area, which worked…until I decided I needed to add more weights, and bought my half rack. My half rack from DICK’S Sporting Goods was a Christmas special a few years ago, that and the Olympic bar and weights gave me more options. So after everything was shoe horned into the loft area, we decided that we needed to convert that space to an office area for Becca, and the gym needed to find a new home.

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How do I fit it all in?
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Strategically placed equipment
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Cardio equipment plus dog toys for Kodi
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Is this good for the floor? Seems like a lot of weight.

Home Gym 2.0

The move to the basement was something I wish I had done years ago. As you can tell from the photos above, I had strategically placed all the equipment. It worked, but was a pain sometimes to move things around to workout. The other issue, I am 100% a morning person, so exercising at 6am, weights banging around, did not exactly make my family happy. Now that the equipment is in the basement, I have room to move around. It’s more quiet for the family, I no longer need to wear headphones to exercise as I can turn on the music on the stereo system. It also allowed me to add some additional pieces, namely a lat pulldown machine, that also lets you do pulling exercises.

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Tony Fremarek’s Lat Pull down Machine
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Tony Fremarek’s Gym

COVID-19

When COVID struck and all the gyms closed, weight training and cardio equipment disappeared from the stores, I could not have been more thankful for the home gym. While friends complained about the inability to go to the gym…my routine did not change. I actually think I may have missed an opportunity to run my own gym from home…or maybe not. I enjoy never waiting on equipment, or wondering if the guy ahead of me wiped down equipment, or put away the weights.

Other Training

So even though I have the full home gym, I do enjoy getting outside and exercising. In 2018 I trained for and ran in the Chicago Marathon 4:25:52, 8 seconds better than my goal. I cycle outside, still enjoy running outside, and even just taking a good long walk. For me…I need that exercise as a stress reliever.

Is a Home Gym right for you?

I’ll honest, getting to this point has taken years, somewhere in the 10+ range. If you can be patient to grow a home gym, and actually use it then go for it. I traded the monthly gym membership for saving up for new equipment, and growing the gym. At the end of the day, it’s all about getting moving. For me I love the gym, for others it’s about walking outside. The key is to find what works for you.

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In better shape at 49 than 30.
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Tony Fremarek the “Gym Rat” in my element.

Tony Fremarek’s Thoughts on Exercising…Why the HELL aren’t you exercising? Part 1.

I’m just going to say it…I LOVE to workout!!! If I could be a gym rat I totally would. Every bit of it I enjoy…well not every bit…I hate to stretch, and as I’ve gotten older I’ve needed to add that in. Free weights and Cardio are totally my jam.

The Early Years

Video games were in their infancy as I came to age as a kid. Sure I had a gaming console, but if I had my choice, I was OUTSIDE playing. Baseball, Football, street hockey, riding bikes, basically whatever, and whatever the weather. That activity served me well. As an active kid in my high school days, I played sports, and was always on the go. I could eat whatever and whenever I wanted…nothing says I’m a high school guy like eating a large sub sandwich from Sub City (shout out to my Carl Sandburg days) at 10pm on a Friday or Saturday night. I was always a big eater, I grew up in what I’ll call the clean plate club, with a Mom who cooked enough for another family or two to come eat dinner. I made it through College with working and going to school, mixing in some “weightlifting” classes for credit. Really it was like 4 or 5 different classes, each worth a credit or two, that even though they were named differently, it was really code for go to the gym for credit. Once college was done, and I began to work full time, my diet caught up to me. Fast food for lunch everyday, not exercising…the weight started to appear. I’ve thankfully been lucky over the years that with a little exercise, usually running, I can lose some of the gut. I remember vividly, going for runs the week before I got married since my tux pants all of a sudden felt a bit too tight.

Sympathetically Pregnant

Gina and I have had kids as part of the marriage equation forever. We were married in June of 1994, Anthony was born in July of 1995, Becca soon thereafter in March of 1997. So my wife did not grow up in the clean plate, make enough for 5 meals household (mostly because I know my father-in-law hates leftovers). She’s also a picky eater…but when she was pregnant…some of that changed. Nothing sounds better than a Pop’s beef sandwich and fries at 9pm on a Tuesday. So when she would crave it…like a good husband…I went and got it…and some for me as well. Let’s just say that Tony Fremarek was getting a little large.

The Day of Rekoning

Oh how I remember this day…It was my cousin’s wedding day. I had not worn a suit in I can’t tell you how long…well, it took every bit of sucking it in to get my pants on…then I had to stop and buy a belt on the way, since mine no longer fit around my waist. I had grown to a not so healthy 225 +/- pounds. Gone was the 30″ waist of my high school days, replaced with something larger. That for me was the day I decided I needed to start eating better, and exercising.

Tony Fremarek at Disney World in not slim days.
Tony Fremarek Looking “Not Slim”

The Gym

So I joined a gym. I instantly enjoyed it, I started the routine of exercising before work, literally rolling out of bed with my bag packed the night before, and was usually at the gym I joined at 5:30am when they opened. That became the new routine. Another motivator was traffic, I worked in DesPlaines, and lived in Plainfield…I quickly learned that traffic at 4:30am was considerably less than traffic at 6:30am. This was my first experience of the gym, and I enjoyed it. I made some friends, the guys who like me worked out every morning before work. We were mutual spotters for each other, and did the chit chat of sports every morning. For years I was the member of a gym, small gyms, larger gyms, Lifetime Fitness (by far my favorite of gyms), and the local Y (on more than one occasion). When I say years it was easily 15+.

Working from Home / Home Gym Time

As I started to work from home more often, going to the gym took too much time. The 15 minutes to the gym, the 5-10 minutes getting settled in, working out, then showering, then the drive home. Soon what had been great when I was beating the commute, became a fact that I felt like I was losing hours in the day, and needed that time for the rest of my life. That was when I decided to start my home gym. Gina had already been an at home exerciser, so we already had a treadmill and an elliptical machine. So I quit the gym, bought the Bowflex 1090 weights and an adjustable bench. My love of exercise was even more now…since weather no longer mattered, I didn’t need to battle rain or snow to trudge to the gym, plus my time was spent actually exercising.

To be continued…

Americans don’t suck!!!

The Impeachment of Donald Trump

Joe Biden has been President now for 21 days now. In his address he spoke of unity, that we need to come together as one country, not as Republicans and Democrats, but as Americans. While I will admit to the fact that I did not vote for President Biden, I agree with him that we need to come together as a nation. As the Senate begins the impeachment process, it makes me wonder about how we got here as a nation. Who or what is at fault? When did we become a nation so bitterly divided? I look back to the days of my youth, the presidency of Ronald Reagan, were we this divided then? Go back further to the election of 1960. President Kennedy won that election with an Electoral college vote of 303-219. President Biden won by a very similar number of 306-232. So we have been a nation divided before, not all elections are landslides. While President Kennedy clearly had missteps and issues as President, he also had successes, like putting the country on the path to land a man on the moon and safely return him to earth.

I have had a theory and a thought for sometime now. I firmly believe that what separates Americans is far less than what ties us together. I believe that what we collectively want as Americans is about 90% the same…it’s the 10% the divides us. You can debate the percentages, but I would bet that any number is higher than 50/50. My thoughts on what binds us as to our wants…

  • A Safe Place to live and raise our families.
  • A home to live in.
  • A Good Job to be able to provide for ourselves and our families.
  • An ability to get a good education. Not only college but trade schools as well…news flash…College isn’t for everyone.
  • The ability to express our thoughts and ideas, without ridicule.
  • The ability to express ourselves, again without ridicule.
  • Great infrastructure
  • Medical care

I know that this list can clearly be longer, but this would be a great start.

Back to where did we go astray? Is it the fault of social media? I think that plays a part. Back in the day you had to face someone to be mean to them. You had to watch the human element of how your words could damage or hurt a person. We have lost some of that humanity with Social Media. We have so many keyboard warriors who do great damage with a few keystrokes. I have had the honor of serving as an elected official for almost 12 years now. I try my best to make decisions in the best interest of residents and taxpayers of Plainfield Township. I have some folks that I like to call “The Tony Fremarek Fan Club”, who apparently know me so well, know how I think, why I do things, etc…even though most of these “fans” have never spent a minute talking with me. Would these keyboard warriors say those same things to my face, perhaps, or perhaps not. Am I willing to talk with them and listen to concerns and opinions on issues important to them. Absolutely.

I worry that our children deal with this on a regular basis and have become either numb or jaded towards it. How many kids today are bullied on social media? I bet the numbers are higher than reported? The better question…how many adults are bullied on Social Media? How many of us are guilty of attacking others over a difference of opinions? We can have debate…but why does it need to be personal attacks? Why can’t we agree to disagree? With that said, I’m not sure how our leaders, many of them part of the Baby Boomer generation, have lost the ability to communicate and share ideas and opinions, without a winner take all mentality. Where is the art of compromise? In most business transactions, I tell my clients that in a deal everyone should feel a little anxiety after a deal is done…if both parties feel like they gave up on some issues, and won others, then that is the art of compromise. If one person got everything they wanted…then either they had low expectations, or the other party got screwed. What happened to the ability to debate the issues, and to genuinely listen to others? Trust me…I don’t see this as a Republican issue or a Democrat issue…I see this as an issue with Americans.

Where does this leave us? More thoughts for another day…but let me leave you with this. As we begin the impeachment process…one that has a forgone conclusion of acquittal, can’t our elected officials be doing something more constructive? Why? Because As Americans, we Don’t Suck!!!