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darkstar

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  1. Hey guys, this will be my third challenge. Let's do this! The Goals Fitness 1. Strength train at least 3x a week (+2 STR) Bonus: Hold a full back lever for 5 seconds (+1 STR) 2. Stretch at least 3x a week (+3 DEX) Bonus: Do a full front split on both sides (+1 DEX) 3. Drop body fat to 10% (+3 CON) Bonus: Win the 6-pack PvP challenge (+1 CON) Life 1. Train in acrobatics / aerial arts at least 2x a week (+2 DEX, +1 STA) Bonus: Train on Dick Grayson's (aka Robin's) apparatus of choice, the Flying Trapeze, at any point during the challenge (+1 DEX) Comments Last challenge, I went in without any plan for tackling my body fat goal, and I ended up failing pretty badly. This time, I will incorporate these two tactics: 1. Drink a full glass of water or milk along with every meal 2. Track how good / full I feel every day at 2pm and 8pm (scale of 1-10, 1 being starving, 10 being Jabba the Hutt) and use the feedback to adjust my meals accordingly And yes, "Train in acrobatics / aerial arts at least 2x a week" is my "life goal". I am in the assassin clan after all :-D Starting Stats Height: 175 cm Weight: 145.0 lb Body fat: 12.0% [ATTACH=CONFIG]6287[/ATTACH] [ATTACH=CONFIG]6286[/ATTACH]
  2. - You rocked this challenge - It looks like you weren't kidding about the tattoos - Those costumes 0_o wow! Pile o' Tribbles is THE most adorable
  3. Thanks for the awesome template, Nuala! Challenge results: C+ overall [TABLE=class: cms_table] Goal Attributes Assigned Grade Attributes Awarded Comments Be airborne once a week +3 DEX, +1 STR A+ +3 DEX, +1 STR Took an aerial silks class every week; also took one additional class in aerial straps and one additional class in static trapeze over the course of the challenge Strength train twice a week +3 STR, +1 DEX A +3 STR, +1 DEX On the mark: twice a week every week Drop body fat to 10% +2 CON, +1 CHA D +0.1 WIS Went from 11.6% down to 10.8%, then right back up to 11.5% Get to Diamond league in StarCraft 2 +3 WIS, +1 CHA F n/a I abandoned this goal because I stopped playing StarCraft 2 halfway through the challenge [/TABLE] Final stats: Before: STR 3.0 | DEX 3.0 | STA 1.0 | CON 2.0 | WIS 4.0 | CHA 2.0 After: STR 7.0 | DEX 7.0 | STA 1.0 | CON 2.0 | WIS 4.1 | CHA 2.0 Parting thoughts I'm pretty damn psyched about seeing a challenge all the way through to the end for the first time! :-D I'm okay with the fact that I had to abandon my life goal--I'll just have to select a better goal next time. As for the 10% body fat goal, that could have gone a LOT better. I'll be reusing that goal next challenge, and I'll have a new plan of attack.
  4. SIIIIIIICK COSTUME! It suits you very well. Robin is such a beast, and for a kid without actual superpowers, he's pretty f***ing strong. Good luck with your novel. I'm a big fan of the "f*** it all, I'm just gonna go for it" style of ass kicking that you seem to be sporting these days :-D
  5. Some more thoughts on my 3rd fitness goal (getting to 10% body fat), and why it didn't go so well this challenge. The original plan was really simple: eat less, drop in body fat. What were some of the problems that came up? When I was eating less, I became way less productive in all parts of my life because (a) I had less energy and ( I spent all day thinking about food. Being hungry a lot of the time caused me to eat a TON when I wasn't paying attention / when the opportunity presents itself. Not only did this happen often enough to undo most of the progress I've made, it also makes me feel crappy and bloated for quite a while after eating. I found it difficult to build strength when I wasn't getting enough food (fuel). I think this is not actually true, but just an excuse I came up with What are some adjustments I'm going to make going forward? Focus on eating better quality food (more nutritious, less calorically dense, etc.) instead of on eating less. Figure out how much food I need to be at my peak (on a scale of 1-10, if 1 causes me to be hungry and distracted and 10 causes me to be bloated and lethargic, I'm aiming for 5), and consistently eat that much. Shift my emphasis from cosmetics (e.g. aesthetic quality of abs, number that shows up on the measuring device) to fitness / strength (e.g. ability to hold more advanced position in the progression towards back lever). After all... "Appearance is a consequence of fitness."
  6. Oops, it's been a while--I was out of town Mon - Wed of last week, and then I forgot to post when I got back. Time for a massive(ly condensed) update! Workouts in the past week: Tuesday 10/23: push ups and bodyweight squats (I was out of town) Wednesday 10/24: V-sits and supermans (still out of town) Friday 10/26: Strength training (back home) Saturday 10/26: Strength training (back home) Sunday 10/27: Aerial silks class Monday 10/28: Static trapeze class Today's workout: Yoga class Strength training Skin the cat: 5 with tucked legs (to warm up) Tuck back levers: 10sec x 5 Tuck front levers: 10sec x 5 Standing shoulder press: 8 (45 pounds), 8 (55 pounds), 8 (65 pounds), 6 (55 pounds), 8 (45 pounds) Lots of cable cross exercises (to strengthen rarely used shoulder muscles and prevent injury) Handstand balance training (against a wall): 5 attempts Summary of goals: Fitness goal #1 (take an aerial class every week): Success! (Counting yesterday's trapeze class, I'm technically done with this goal. But I've got one more aerial class for this challenge period on Sunday, and it's going to be awesome.) Fitness goal #2 (strength train twice a week): Just one more strength training session this week for me to hit the 6-week goal. Fitness goal #3 (10% body fat): This one didn't go so well; I might say more in a follow-up post. But not to worry! I'll have a better strategy / approach for the next 6-week challenge. Life goal: I stopped playing StarCraft 2 about halfway through the challenge because I just wasn't enjoying it, which caused me to abandon my original goal (getting promoted to the Diamond league). Meh, it is what it is. I swapped in a filler life goal related to personal finances, but it's just a filler. I get my next paycheck in a few days, so I'll check off the filler goal when that happens. Be on the look out for a better thought-out (and possibly more ambitious) life goal next challenge! :-D
  7. It's ultimately your call, but I think the takeaway is less so "practice front levers!" and more so "practicing certain skills can build up strength that helps a lot for seemingly unrelated skills".
  8. This is for both Dillpedo and Knockingdog. From the book "Building the Gymnastics Body":
  9. !!!!! I think we're at a similar place in our levers, so it'll be really cool to see our combined progress over time. I can't even TOUCH that ridiculous tuck planche though--well done! P.S. When I first read your workout, I read it as "Warmup: Tuck Planche", and I was like wait what?!?!
  10. OH SHIT WHEN DID JPRYAN JOIN THE CHALLENGE?! Don't you already have a six pack? :-D Anyway, I think it'd be cool if the end of this PvP lines up with the end of a 6 week challenge. Since we started in the middle of this one, how would you guys feel about having this PvP end with the next 6 week challenge?
  11. In your honor, I've started practicing precisions. I haven't found a good place to practice outdoors, but at the gym, when you put down two boxes and precision back and forth between them, people are like "??? what is that guy doing" :-P [EDIT] OH YEAH! Have an amazing trip--I look forward to hearing how it went.
  12. Aerial silk class today! I ended up practicing a lot of the stuff I learned last Thursday on straps instead of "typical" silks moves. - It's time to start working on back levers. Here's my current progress; I've obviously got a long way to go. Step 1: get that back flat! - I'm pretty happy with these (if you can't tell from the photo, the basic idea is to do a pike over one arm and hang by that arm) - I've got a LOOOONG way to go on these; the goal is to (1) not need a spotter to prevent me from pulling my arms out of their sockets, and (2) be able to let go with the other arm [EDIT] Gonna be gone tomorrow until Wednesday. Will continue updating when I get back.
  13. Realbrickwall, there are a few minor exceptions (for example, if you're working towards pseudo planche push ups, you can gradually move your hands from "by your shoulders" to "by your hips"); in general, though, that is great motivational advice, as long as the person receiving it is aware that some bodyweight exercises can be extremely dangerous if done before one is ready. This is especially fresh on my mind because I had a friend recently break his hand after trying to do hanging crunches (his knees weren't stable enough to support his weight). But CaraStarbuck obviously knows what's up, so we definitely don't have to worry here CaraStarbuck, here are a few exercises that I really like. Let me know if you want: (a) clarification / videos for any of them, or ( more exercises that I really like (I don't want to throw EVERY EXERCISE I'VE EVER DONE EVER at you, but I'm more than happy to tell you more if you want something in a specific category). And by the way, I don't have ANY experience teaching / coaching; I'm just telling you what exercises I personally find fun and helpful, so please take this with a grain of salt. - Circus style push ups: your hand placement is slightly closer together than usual, and your elbows go straight back instead of out; these are actually my default push ups - Box dips: put your hands on a small box / chair, put your feet on the floor, and then just do dips; if you want to make it slightly more interesting, lift your hips when you're at the top of the dip so that your body forms a straight line - Flying burpees: you'll want a nice open area for this one; travel forward as far as you can during the "jump" portion of the burpee; this one is BRUTAL - V-snaps: lie on your back with your hands straight above your head, then explosively bend at the hip (with everything else straight) so that your hands meet your feet in midair; to make it easier, bend your knees as your legs come up
  14. We'll see who's laughing when I unveil my 672 tattoos (*cough* sharpee *cough*)
  15. @Dillpedo Would you consider recruiting a traveling circus group for your ship next time you dock? They could train you when there's downtime...
  16. My intense workout: 2 minutes of "eat plain greek yogurt with bananas and walnuts" 2 minutes of "stand on this thing and try not to kill myself" 2 minutes of "time for back massage" 2 minutes of foam roller action Oh wait, today was a rest day :-D
  17. Holy shit! Congratulations on the wall handstand push ups--I've tried those and I know how difficult they are (translation: I can't do a single damn one), so serious props.
  18. @jpryan90 I think we'll let the community vote; when you cast your vote, you can decide what criteria you find the most important @Dillpedo I may or may not go buy some sharpies now
  19. Siiiick! But dude... I am gonna question your infiltration tactics. Having an Assassin avatar? :-P And thanks, AtSeaLevel and realbrickwall, for making me not feel like a traitor.
  20. Took an aerial straps class today. HOLY. F-ING. SHIT. The instructor had us work on: - Skin the cat - Progressions towards front lever and back lever (I am NOWHERE close to having them... but we all gotta begin somewhere) - This on strap (not trapeze like the picture)--I have it down :-D I'll take a pic if I ever get a chance - This on strap--not even close 0_0 I will need a LOT more shoulder strength for this one - Conditioning as we switched off (so I ended up doing 25x3 box dips and 10x3 hanging leg lifts in addition to what's listed above) Also, I'm pretty sure I destroyed all the nerve endings in my wrists. --- A diet-related adjustment: gonna try to get more protein; since I'm pretty anti "Protein Bar" / "Protein Drink", that means more chicken, etc. Also, I just realized that nuts have WAY more fat than protein, so while they're an awesome snack, they're not an efficient source of protein.
  21. Today's partial workout: L-sit mixed grip pull ups: 10, 10 Renegade rows: 12, 12, 12, 12, 20 Jumping pistol squats: 5, 5, 5 Feel like vomiting because I ate way too much way too soon before trying to work out: 5 minutes Adjustments for the future: - Full range of motion at the bottom of L-sit pull ups - Legs closer together for renegade rows, go for higher reps right off the bat - Form on jumping pistol squats was awful; gonna stick to regular ones for now and focus on improving form / endurance - Rather than trying to compensate for a crappy meal by attempting to work out 1 hour later, focus on not having crappy meals in the first place! [EDIT] I went back and finished the workout. Renegade rows: 12, 12, 12 Precision jumps: 20, 20, 20 Standing shoulder press @ 45 pounds: 8, 8, 8 Push press @ 65 pounds: 5, 5, 10 Tuck lever pull + tuck ice cream maker: 3, 3, 3
  22. 10% body fat, eh? I approve of your goal
  23. Wow, yeah, the comment on patience is a very good point, and definitely something to keep in mind. Uh, did somebody install bionic legs when you were sleeping?! That kind of pistol squat progress is just outrageous. Congratulations!
  24. I think we forgot something very important--how are we going to judge this PvP? I propose community voting on two prizes: (1) best six pack, and (2) most ridiculous progress, and we should set an end-date for when voting will happen. But! If any of you guys want to propose other suggestions, I would love to hear them.
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