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Knightwatch

The Dark Knightwatch Rises

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So last Challenge was the first one since I've joined, several years ago, in which I didn't participate at all.  The last several before that had been somewhat lackluster anyway, and, frankly, I've been burned out for a long time.

 

But the fire is getting stoked once again.  By the end of the last Challenge, I badly missed being a part of one, and I started clearing my schedule some.  Work is still a pain, but I've started standing my ground more and more on the physical and mental limits of my coworkers and I, and it looks like there's a light at the end of the tunnel.  My health has to be a priority, and I'm beginning to treat it like one.

 

So going back to the overall goal of building an action-ready superheroic body, I'm looking to improve absolute raw strength, relative strength via bodyweight movements, and agility.

 

 

GOAL ONE: IMPROVE ABSOLUTE STRENGTH

 

batmanbench_zps89574e05.jpg

 

I'll be focusing on four primary lifts, and retesting one rep maxes at the end of 6 weeks to determine improvement.

 

* CURRENT PRESS: 200

* CURRENT DEADLIFT: 465

* CURRENT INCLINE BENCH: 245

* CURRENT SQUAT: 375

 

Programming will be six week cycle of 531, with Joker Sets and First Set Last protocols used.  Assistance work will vary, but I am looking to incorporate more bodyweight movements to assist with my second goal, and some bodybuilding type movements here and there, finishing with some quick conditioning work.

 

 

GOAL TWO: IMPROVE RELATIVE STRENGTH

 

batman%20pushups_zpslusiapzx.gif

 

By focus will be on upper body here, with pushups, pullups, and dips being the tests.

 

My goal is:

 

* 40 PUSHUPS

* 12 DEADHANG PULLUPS

* 15 BAR DIPS

 

The programming here will be high frequency pushups and chinup ladders alternated day-to-day, and dip worked into assistance work after lifting.  As I a) get stronger; B) get more efficient with the movements; and c) lose bodyfat through training and improved diet, this should be very do-able.

 

I'll also be including some work on the rings and handstand pushups here and there for fun, but I've been trying to do too much of late.  Gonna refocus on getting these basics down again, and then getting more ambitious.

 

 

GOAL THREE: IMPROVE AGILITY

 

batman%20agaility_zps20afmdv7.gif

 

I move like crap, and I hate it.  I've made some improvements here and there, but I've a long way to go before I can get back to being considered "agile".  Again, I have longer term ambitions here, but I'm starting light.  The plan here is:

 

* complete the Movement Vitamin from GMB.  It's a 28-day program; I just need to finish it in the 6 weeks, allowing myself for a few missed days or planned rests.  If I finish early, I've got another program to start in on...

* hold a 5 second inversion.  doesn't have to be the cleanest thing in the world, but progress will be made towards hand-balancing

 

Additional work will be done in the form of mobility and stretching sessions, and practice of the most basic tumbles like shoulder rolls and cartwheels.  Short term benchmark that may be out of reach right now but achievable again within a couple challenges, is the Kip Up.  I used to do them with no hands; I can get a basic one back.

 

 

LIFE GOAL: GIVE BACK

 

c65cf938-c11a-421d-8f7e-6c5bc9120707_zps

 

It's not enough to be a badass; you have to be a badass for something.  Goal here is to take at least three charitable actions.  Obviously more will be even better, but these need to be something a tiny bit more than the kindness that we should strive for every day.  This may be a sizable donation to something, serving at a soup kitchen, or taking part in a community clean up or something.  Whatever.  But three charitable things outside my normal routine.

 

OK, let's do this!

 

tumblr_n1x9c8z0vh1qf1j4qo5_500_zps1nfswb

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kept getting distracted by the pushup gif.

 

Much awesomeness here.

 

hahaha  :D

 

those goals are awesome, full all round fitness ability

 

Thanks!  Eager to get back to it!  :)

 

this will be a come back challenge for me too.

 

We got this, you and I.  We got this.

 

Yeah, man. Yeah.

 

Yessir.  :)

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OK, here we go, folks!  Day one!

 

Woke up early this morning, and did the first day of practice on the Movement Vitamin.  Probably spent about 15 minutes on it or so, and then will probably play around with it a bit more pre- or post-lift this afternoon.  Man, it right away exposed how tight my hamstrings and ankles are, so that gives me something to work on right off.

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This challenge is so well rounded it's making me sick. GMB movement vitamin program sounds really interesting -- looking forward to hearing more about it. :)

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This challenge is so well rounded it's making me sick. GMB movement vitamin program sounds really interesting -- looking forward to hearing more about it. :)

Haha, thanks! And so far it's pretty interesting. I like how they only give you one movement, day by day, instead of a whole system to read ahead on. I have NO idea what's coming, and I like that. :)

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I am going to stalk, I mean follow you for this challenge.  The GMB movement vitamin is something I am interested in but didn't want to spend the money on right now.  I look forward to the great things going on here!

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I am going to stalk, I mean follow you for this challenge.  The GMB movement vitamin is something I am interested in but didn't want to spend the money on right now.  I look forward to the great things going on here!

 

Follow away!  :D

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Yesterday's gym session went reasonably well.  Been struggling with low energy lately, but I'm hoping that it'll come back if I keep plugging away.

 

WARMUP

 

practiced movement vitamin's daily move again for a bit 

 

2 rounds of:

 

* 100 jumprope skips

* 10 pushups

* 10 squats

* 10 situps

 

 

PRESS

 

45 x 5 (superset with band pullaparts)

95 x 5 (superset with band pullaparts)

 

120 x 5

135 x 5

155 x max (got 8, +3 pushpress)

135 x 5

 

 

PULLUPS (superset after each press working set)

 

5

5

5

5

 

 

DIPS

 

8

8

 

*superset with*

 

RESERVE FLYS

 

20s x 10

20s x 10

 

 

RING PUSHUPS

 

10

10

 

*superset with*

 

LAT RAISE

 

20s x 10

20s x 10

 

 

And that was that!

 

Hoping to get in some deadlifts today, but not sure if my gym is open.  If not, I'll have to fit it in tomorrow at some point, despite the fact that I'm working a double.  May have to shuffle stuff around, but I'll make it work.

 

OK, off to work on today's Movement Vitamin!  

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Hmm, practicing some rolls today for GMB MV, and I'm learning that going back towards my left shoulder is all kinds of wonky.  Hmm, interesting.  One thing I like about this program is how it's not about perfecting a skill, but rather playing and exploring  a movement.  And be exploring, I'm learning about strengths and weakness I wasn't otherwise aware of.  Gonna keep at them through the day, sprinkled here and there.

 

I didn't update about eating last night, because there wasn't a whole lot to tell.  Had to rush from the gym to the bowling alley to meet up with a couple friends, to kickstart back an old tradition we used to have of monthly nights like that.  Tried to get a burger there, and it was just awful.  So, mostly just had some chicken tenders and a few beers.  Not great, but oh well, not too worried.  Right back to it today with some bacon and eggs, and about to have a salad in a bit with some chicken, and a protein shake later.  Tonight will probably be some chicken and veggies, and I'll prep a lot of food for my double shift tomorrow.

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Managed to get into the gym.

 

WARMUP

 

Just some hip stretches and some Good Mornings with the bar

 

 

NEUTRAL GRIP PULLUPS

 

 

just sets of 2 and 3 scattered throughout, part of the high frequency thing, not this workout proper, so to speak

 

 

DEADLIFT

 

135 x 5

185 x 4

225 x 3

275 x 2

315 x 1

 

365 x max (got 5.  maybe and shoulda had more, but I wasn't in the "pushing it" mood today)

225 x 10

 

 

So this is one variation I'm making with Wendler.  I do best on DL with one max set.  Basically, i'm gonna use the top prescribed set and just go for that, but add in more warmup sets.  I'll still add in Joker and backoff sets, but again, didn't feel like pushing it today.  With age, I'm finally learning to listen to my body.  Sometimes.  :P

 

 

ROMANIAN DEADLIFT

 

135 x 10

135 x 10

 

 

BULGARIAN SPLITSQUAT

 

bodyweight x 8

bodyweight x 8

 

 

SWISS BALL CURLS

 

OK, I used to do a lot of these.  Holy smokes, has my body changed in the last few years.  Going back to my earlier point about the GMB MV, one thing I'm really focusing on is just exploring and learning about my strengths and weaknesses.  So if you're not familiar with this movement, you're basically laying on your back, heels on the ball.  Then you lift your hips till you're forming a straight line, an then curl your heels towards your butt until your feet are flat on the ball.  In theory, your hips will rise even higher.  Yeah, that's where things just didn't work out for me.  If anything, my hips sorta drooped down some.  Not sure if this is mobility or strength, or both.  Something to work on, though!

 

Oh, yeah, did two sets of 8 of 'em.  Well, my versions, anyway.  :P

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SWISS BALL CURLS

 

OK, I used to do a lot of these.  Holy smokes, has my body changed in the last few years.  Going back to my earlier point about the GMB MV, one thing I'm really focusing on is just exploring and learning about my strengths and weaknesses.  So if you're not familiar with this movement, you're basically laying on your back, heels on the ball.  Then you lift your hips till you're forming a straight line, an then curl your heels towards your butt until your feet are flat on the ball.  In theory, your hips will rise even higher.  Yeah, that's where things just didn't work out for me.  If anything, my hips sorta drooped down some.  Not sure if this is mobility or strength, or both.  Something to work on, though!

 

Oh, yeah, did two sets of 8 of 'em.  Well, my versions, anyway.   :tongue:

 

Glad you explained. I didn't have the right picture from the name, but once you described them...oh yeah, I hate those. Plus they are awkward. I feel like the ball doesn't really end up in the right position and I have to adjust after a few reps. Just another form of torture.

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Glad you explained. I didn't have the right picture from the name, but once you described them...oh yeah, I hate those. Plus they are awkward. I feel like the ball doesn't really end up in the right position and I have to adjust after a few reps. Just another form of torture.

Well I'm glad I'm not the only one! :D

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