This challenge has the ultimate end goal of completing a mini triathlon on Sunday February 4th. That's right, on the last day of the challenge.
Swim 250m, Bike 10km, Run 3km. A "short" race which will be my first triathlon in 4 years (I only just realised that it's been 4 years since I've done one).
My Current State
Last month was the first time in a while that I've actually been losing weight. Despite having a reasonably good diet, I lost little weight over the previous 12 months. For a while I wasn't sure what was wrong, now I think the missing piece of the puzzle is that I wasn't active enough. Over the last month, I've been doing more walking (though still a small amount), but I've added swimming and cycling into my training. In fact, I went 6 weeks without going to the gym and instead I did 2 training sessions a week. With this, I dropped around 4kgs last month which suggests to me that weight loss is a lot easier for me if I'm doing some cardio.
Weigh less than 90kgs (currently at 96kgs)
Be in ketosis for 1 month
Become a pro triathlete
Complete Mini Triathlon on February 4th
Swim once a week
Ride once a week
Run twice a week
Gym/Strength and Conditioning twice a week
Work like a machine
Change my work schedule so I focus on one project each day of the week
Ride my bike to/from work at least once a week
Create side income by choosing one of the following two options:
Offer tutoring services and resources in Mathematics
Start a blog on Skill Learning and build a strong subscriber list
Quests Explained in Detail
I accept that this will take 2-3 months to complete. If it happens quicker, good, means I can focus on other goals sooner. If not, that's okay, as long as I progress towards it.
90kgs is actually the first milestone in my weight loss journey. I think my final weight will sit somewhere under 85kgs, but right now, I have this first goal. Based on past experience, being under 90kgs means I can push myself to complete a 10km run without damaging my body. It's effectively the first point where exercise doesn't feel like it's a huge struggle and I don't get out of breath easily.
To achieve this, there are three main things I'll be doing
Stay in ketosis by saying no to all junk food
Completing 3-5 workouts a week
Going for short walks almost every day with my partner
I just recently read Mark Sisson's Keto Reset book. In it, he suggests easing into keto by eating low carb for 21 days, then sticking to strict keto for 6 weeks. Until the 21st of January, I'm in that low carb phase. However, I can push it a bit harder without too much effort by focusing on saying no to junk food. This effectively means for 21 days, no chocolate, no potato chips, no ice cream (the three sugary junk foods that I eat). This will train my willpower, something I haven't done in a few years.
Become a pro triathlete
Over 6 years, the sport I loved doing the most was running and triathlons. Hence I got back into triathlon training last challenge and aim to continue it this challenge (and ideally for many years). I'm following Power Speed Endurance (PSE PRO) workouts (formally Crossfit Endurance). This works better for me and allows me to have a life outside of training.
Currently I've been focusing a lot on skill development, especially with the swim. I barely did any skill/drill work for swimming yet now, the warmup + skill work is my workout (I don't even do the main set). In only a few sessions my swimming skill is a lot better. I now have a good rotation through the water, and I'm working on making my catch better. One thing that has slowed me down is my breath whilst swimming. I find I'm out of breath too quickly, but that might be because my workouts range from 1000m to 1500m of swimming. I guess I break down around the 800m mark, which is more than the 250m I need to do for my triathlon.
I put running on hold, because I was hurting my lower legs too easily, a consequence of holding on to extra weight and poor technique. This week, I'll do some Couch to 5k workouts for running coupled with skill work. Nice and simple so I don't overdo it.
Work like a machine
I'm doing a little experiment this month where I change up what work I do for my PhD on different days. For example, Mondays I work on my beta oscillation project. Tuesdays I focus on Data Analysis. Wednesdays are personal days/business focused. Thursdays are for spatial models. Friday for writing. I find I get work done quicker if I have a shorter, but highly focused timeframe to work on it. I think this will work well.
I've spent so much time following sites like Nerd Fitness, I Will Teach You To Be Rich, Live your Legend, that I'm convinced that once I finish my PhD, I don't want to enter the workforce, I'd rather be a freelance consultant and/or run an online business to help others. My main motivation for this is so I have extra time in my day which I can use to enjoy life rather than waste away in the office. The two things I mentioned above cover what I'm passionate about, Mathematics, teaching, and learning. I've attempted to get this started in the past, but fear stopped me from sending my work to people and getting their opinions on it. This year, that won't happen. I'll pick an idea, stick to it, and focus my time on promoting my material to people who'd be willing to read it.
If you can't guess by all the things I wrote, I really enjoy goal setting and making lists of things to do. It gives me something to dream about which motivates me to actually do the work I need to achieve my goals. If you want help setting goals, just shoot me a message, I'd be happy to help with it.
The most important thing I've learnt when setting goals is to work on one of them immediately after making them. For me, that's to head home early to go to the gym with my partner and do an Overhead press workout followed by a keto eggplant lasagna