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About Knightwatch

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    my advice? deadlift.
  • Birthday 08/18/1978

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  1. KW, checking in! Things have gone pretty well this week! I haven't reweighed in, despite my plan to do so every couple days, but I likely will tomorrow, to see if there's been any progress on that front. I did have a fairly disastrous strength session on Monday, where I've learned that my handstand pushup strength has fallen right off a cliff. Ah well, I'll be sure to add in some extra light sessions of them in coming weeks, and hopefully they'll start creeping back up again. Otherwise, I had two decent strength sessions, and two WODs. First strength session I hit some shoulders (to make up for the atrocious handstand work!) including some strict pressing with the axle bar, and working up to a heavy single on deadlifts. Second session was a lot of squatting, which is a movement that's given me a lot of pains lately, both literally and figuratively. I've scaled back pretty far on load, and just trying to be patient in building it back up. Otherwise I'm using a lot of other unloaded movements to keep the ol' legs progressing. The first WOD I got in was a more obstacle course style one my friend and I pieced together, which included some traversing of the monkey bars, which, lemme tell you, is something I haven't done for, uh, DECADES. Man, I'm awful at it haha. But I figure that's like step one in being a roof jumpin' skyline runnin' vigalante type! The other was a lot of squats, thrusters, and cals on the ski erg and bike, done with a partner, but the "non working" partner had to hold a sandbag the entire time. And it lasted 40 minutes. Ow. Finally, I've gone for two light runs so far this week. Well, they've been more walk-jog intervals a la one of those C25K programs, but it's a start! I'll be getting in a ruck tomorrow or Saturday morning, as well. Tomorrow will also be a chest/bench day, and I think I've got the framework for a fun conditioning session I'll plug in afterwards. Otherwise, today's a rest day, though I'll probably do some mobility/stretching later on. Gonna work on the KDubcave a bit too. I'm decidedly butlerless, and I can see why that's such a popular option for my crimefighting peers.
  2. Heya friends! I'm now back home, same and sound. Unfortunately, the gym in town where I was staying actually closed for a couple days due to a wide ranging power outage, so I wasn't able to lift. Bah! But, I got in a couple more walks, and last night, when I got home, I did the first session of the Dan John Pullup Challenge. Tomorrow I'll have a more official kick off to the Challenge, with my first roper workout back. Hope everyone has had a great weekend! Happy Halloween!
  3. Boy oh boy oh boy, can I ever relate to the "aspirational reading" pile. I've got my stack as well, and I'm TRYING to resist buying any more books until I'm done with at least a few of them. We got this!
  4. So, right off the bat, a couple obstacles to overcome: First, I'm starting out by being out of town for a couple days. No biggie though. I'll try to get to a local gym I've been to a few times, both tonight and tomorrow for some workouts. Today we're dealing with a snowless Nor'Easter in the area, but I went for a short walk down to the water this morning, so, one "moving in the AM" for the week is done! The other obstacle I'll face is that I'll be ENDING this Challenge out of town, too, and more specifically, out of country. But again, I can easily make do with whatever I have access to, and if nothing else will focus on bodyweight stuff and mobility. Bookending the Challenge by being on the road, however, does compress my timeframe a bit in getting the pullup challenge in. Here's what that's going to look like, by the way, given my slight adjustments. I'll be doing these reps with about 25 pounds of added resistance: session 1 2-2-1-1 reps session 2 2-2-1-1 reps session 3 3-2-1-1 reps session 4 3-2-1-1 reps session 5 3-2-2-1 reps session 6 3-3-2-1 reps session 7 reps 4-3-2-1 session 8 4-3-2-1-1 reps session 9 4-3-2-2-1 reps session 10 4-3-3-2-1 reps session 11 4-4-3-2-1 reps session 12 5-4-3-2-1 reps session 13 AMRAP test My plan is to do a few sessions a week, usually at the beginning on my workout, between my warmup and primary strength movement. The volume isn't too bad, and if I stay on task, I should be able to knock them out swiftly. If I can get, say, 6 or 7 reps under load by the end of this little experiment, I oughta be able to hit one of my "stat bump" goals of getting 8 bodyweight pullups. So we shall see! Besides, if I'm planning on being a costumed vigilante superhero striking fear in the hearts of evildoers, I better be able to haul myself AND my armor and gear up over a wall, right? Right.
  5. KNIGHTWATCH 1st Level STATS STR 13 DEX 10 CON 9 INT 12 WIS 12 CHA 10 * I used one of those online test things to get a general sense of where my stats currently stand, and then I honestly brought them all down a little bit. Why? Well, I'm thinking of myself as "first level" here, and want to give myself "room to grow", so to speak. CURRENT BENCHMARKS/PROGRESS FOR STAT BUMPS STR Press 190 x5 Squat 305 x 5 Bench Press 265 x 5 Deadlift 415 x 5 Close CoC #1 gripper 8 times per hand * I feel this is something that's presently within reach, but I'll have to dedicate a little bit longer to them, and get back on track with grip training. That's really fallen off. As I hit these numbers in the course of my training, I'll check them off, and then all are completed I'll get +1 STR DEX 16 unbroken dips 8 unbroken pullups 20 unbroken doubleunders * Alright, so, obviously the dips and pullups are still kinda under the realm of "strength". But when I consider dexterous characters, especially in the way I'm thinking of them (Bruce Wayne with gymnast rings in his gym), I also imagine handstands and muscle ups. I'm waaaay off from both, but the dips and pullups are basic building blocks towards them. And there's not much simpler in the realm of "body control" than just moving it up and down. The dubs, meanwhile, are just a real basic "skill" involving coordination and timing and such that I used to be able to do in limited numbers, but have lost along the way. Once I can pass all three tests, I'll set new benchmarks and gain a +1 DEX CON 1 mile unbroken run 4 mile ruck Lose 8 pounds * Obviously the basics of endurance are covered here, but also the pure health element, too. After I hit these I'll add a +1 to my CON, and set new, higher goals. INT Finish 8 books Accumulate 8 hours in study or practice in a non-fitness skill * Pretty straight forward, here. Finish 8 books of any length, and practice or study something for 8 hours total. Can be split among a few skills (3 hours each of Duolingo and, I dunno, researching how to get HAM radio certified, and a couple hours of lessons on guitar) That'll earn me a +1 INT, and a new set of benchmarks. WIS Accumulate 2 hours of meditation Complete 2 books of Bible * Another simple concept. Obviously Wisdom can be reflected in lots of ways, but a real basic one is to work on calming my mind and studying my faith. After this +1. maybe I'll explore some of those other manifestations of WIS. CHA Finish 3 chapters of PN L1cert Write and publish 3 blog entries * Like WIS, Charisma can take many forms. I'm thinking of it in terms of "leadership" and communication this time, two ways that I can work around my social awkwardness and interact with people
  6. Aaaaaand, we're back! Heya folks! I'm gonna be revisiting an idea I had earlier in the year, my own character sheet style tracking system, which I'll explain a bit later on. But what will the next few challenges look like, "thematically"? What'll get me fired up as we begin to close out one year and begin looking towards another? Well, thinking in terms of street level superhero origin stories always works for me. Training for a purpose, taking back the city, depending on grit and toughness and resourcefulness and skills, building out the home base. Batman, Daredevil, Punisher, Arrow; all of them speak to me on a deep, deep level. The ultra skilled, autonomous secret agent thing also fires me up. The obvious choice here is the Jason Bourne films. Not only for the awesome action scenes, athleticism, and situational awareness, but the fact that he's....remembering who he is. Sometimes I really, really feel that I've essentially forgotten my identity. Here's to remembering (and to maybe becoming a hypercapable parkour ninja spy by degrees, too!) I also am drawn to stories of mystery, dark and ancient forces moving against humanity, creepy tales of brave investigators fighting a desperate rear guard battle against the tide. Supernatural (well, early on anyway) spoke to me, as do the books of John Connolly, and games and stories based around the Cthulhu mythos (I'll take my tentacle blasting with a tiny bit more hope though, thanks!) The gun slingin', dread tome totin', library delvin' hardboiled detective is a thing in my schema of total awesomeness, trust me. Think something like Dresden Files, with a little less overt, inate magical ability. I think one of the things I like about these tales, besides the plain ol' light against the evil themes, is how you often need ritual and forgotten tomes and dangerous knowledge as well. The quest for knowledge, balanced with the pursuit of physical badassey, balanced with a fight for human souls. Oh, heck yeah. Speaking of detectives, there's the totally mundane mystery novels featuring characters like Elvis Cole or Spenser. Seriously, if you had me describe my idealized self, it would look a lot like Spenser. Those novels were so instrumental in shaping my as a younger man, and perhaps they will be again as I reshape myself after getting off track for a while. I'd be remiss if I didn't mention the world of The Division. Capable badasses "activated" when all the chips are down and tasked with rebuilding society after the collapse of everything? Uh, yeah. Need I say more? And finally, of course, there's the good ol' Rangers of D&D and fantasy fiction lore. Now, much of the "character fantasy" I build my fitness journey around are modern era heroes, but I can't help but get wicked pumped when Aragorn is introduced in the books or films, and I almost always play a ranger or scout-like character in fantasy gaming. Two aspects I'll definitely take directly, though, is the value of being outdoors, rediscovering a love for the wilderness. The other thing I'll be borrowing is the classic D&D stats for a character sheet I'll maintain over the year. So, that was probably all more information than what you really needed but I think it was therapeutic to kinda spell it out for myself, remind me while I started this whole journey in the first place. Now, what about specific GOALS for this Challenge, outside the longer term character building? 1) Lose 5 pounds or more Pretty strightforward here, right? Lose about a pound a week or better. Given how much spare poundage I'm hauling around, this should be doable. 2) At least three times a week, in the morning, go for either a walk, a ruck, or a run What I'm gonna aim for is 4-5 times a week, but 3 will be good enough for a win. This'll help with the weight loss goal above, as well as building discipline, especially as the weather turns ever colder. 3) Complete Dan John's weighted pullup program. Initially this was written as a 12 DAY program, I'm gonna allow myself to take a couple extra recovery days from it, though, turning it into more of a 12 SESSION program. And in fact, I'm likely gonna add a sort of "on ramp" in the form of two extra session at the beginning. I'll spell out the whole program in the new few days. OK, that's about it! Gonna grab the second post in this thread as a placeholder for the "stat block" as it stands today. I hope everyone has a great Challenge! Lets go do the things!
  7. And we're back! Overall, things are progressing well. Here's what the training has looked like these last couple days: MONDAY, 9/13 DB BENCH PRESS 50s x 10 60s x 10 70s x 8 80s x 8 100s x 6 120s x 6 One of my longer term plans is to hit the 120s for 10. That's, um...a ways off. But still got one more than last time I tried 'em! Then I hit the following WOD: 13 descending ladder to 1, of burpees and situps 1 ascending ladder to 13, of incline DB bench and bent over DB rows Closed things out with 5x20 banded pressdowns TUESDAY, 9/14 HIP SQUAT STATION 95 x 8 135 x 8 185 x 8 225 x 8 225 x 8 225 x 5 HEELS INCLINE GOBLET SQUAT 2pd x 10 2pd x 10 2pd x 10 Then, the following partner WOD: 2 rounds of: 250m row, EACH 500m row, EACH 2 rounds, of 600m bike, EACH 600m bike, EACH Whew. That was sneaky and terrible. Today I'm taking a bit of a rest day, though I plan on going for my walk, and perhaps doing some mobility and calisthenics later on today. Now, as for the other habits... Water, I've been pretty good at. If I haven't hit an exact gallon, well, I've been drinking more water for more. Cooking a fresh meal? Monday I batch cooked something that I had fresh for dinner than night, a beef and rice skillet thing. Yesterday, I made steak tacos. Meditation? Ooh, been struggling on this one a little. Only one day since this weekend, so, gotta carve out a little time tonight. Walking, I've been doing OK. About every other day, which is ROUGHLY on track fro a success, but I'd like to get maybe 2 days on to every 1 off, so, gonna get onto in tonight for sure.
  8. Taking today off from training, but the last few days have gone pretty well. Here's a rundown of what I've been up to: MONDAY, 09/06 Started the day with a mile stroll, and then hit shoulders in the gym. Strict press, DB upright rows, and standing DB press drop sets. I followed that up with a WOD, during which I accumulated 300 KB swings, 75 pushups, and 75 DB rows. TUESDAY, 09/07 Lots of squats on Tuesday. Back squats for 3x5, followed by 3x10 front squats. Then in the WOD, there were squat cleans, wallballs, and running. My legs still aren't quite right today. I also kinda "tested" there I am for mex reps strict pullups. Got 6, so, my first kinda-long-but-still-fairly-short term goal there is to get to 8. Can I do it in 5 weeks? We shall see! WEDNESDAY, 09/08 Chest day (is best day). Started things off with banded benching, and then moved onto the incline with an axle bar for 3-4 times through a strip set. Then, yet another WOD, since I wated to test out a potential one I'll be coaching tomorrow. 5 rounds of 3 heavy sandbag over-shoulders, 6 incline DB bench with a 4-second negative, 9 calories on the ski erg, and a 100ft prowler push. I also had started the day with a 2 mile ruck with 30lbs. So, all in all, not too bad. I've also been doing well on water intake, buuuuut, a little weak on cooking and meditation. Looking to right that part of things tonight!
  9. Ugggggggghhhhh. Just posted a long update aaaaaaaaand lost it. Argh. I'll try to retype it all, but, for now, just reporting that all's going OK so far. Will edit/update when I've rewritten. *grumble grumble*
  10. SO, this challenge is going to be a bit of an experiment for me. I've become more and more interested in the development of good habits, but, I've found that I put too much pressure on myself to do things perfectly. Even if I break the habit down into something really easy, if I miss a single day, well, I consider the whole thing a failure and go off the rails. A weird thing happens if I relieve a little bit of the pressure though, and tell myself that 50% of the time is good enough....suddenly, I seem to do the things a lot more frequently and easily than I do after a failed attempt at "perfect". This isn't something I've exactly quantified, so I'm gonna try tracking it the next few weeks and see if I have more success than past attempts. The following will be "habits" that I will consider a success if I do them on more than 50% of the days throughout the challenge: WALK (OR RUN, OR HIKE, OR RUCK) ONE MILE OR MORE DRINK ONE GALLON OF WATER STRENGTH TRAINING MEDITATE OR BREATHE OR PRAY FOR 10 MINUTES COOK A FRESH MEAL POST HERE ON THE FORUMS Now, none of that exactly makes a "program", and I still have specific shorter and longer term goals I'm working on. But that's all on top of the foundation for the next few weeks, of just getting in and doing the damn thing (at least half the time, anyway). I'll make a "progress" page and "character sheet" kind of placeholder below this post, and one for tracking the above habits. So, more to come!
  11. Alright friends, I've been quiet this week, but I've been plugging away at my goals. I've hit two of three strength sessions with one on tap for today, done two runs and will probably do another tomorrow, and hit some additional conditioning. Areas I've struggled more with is on the cooking and studying front. I've done a little of both, but a bit short of my goal. But, I've still got some week left in order to get it back on track! I've also consumed some Spenser each day, in the form of listening to a more recent audiobook during my daily errands and walks and such. Jumping in on another more recent one today! Love the way that Ace Atkins updated the character a bit, his books really feel like some of the classic Parker era, but a little less repetitive/dated (even the staunchest Parker fans tend to admit he hit a several year dry spell around the mid to late 90s or so). Gonna do a little bit of studying for my cert now, and hit some deadlifts, shoulders, and conditioning later on before coaching all evening. After running a bunch of sessions I tend to have lowered willpower, and being tired makes it a lot easier to say "fresh start tomorrow" and just get a pizza or something. I'm supposed to play some golf tomorrow though (a very unSpenserian outing, I'll be the first to admit!), and that means beers and hot dogs, so, obviously not much of a fresh start. All the more reason to stay on track and cook up something decent tonight. I'll update later with my workout and dinner!
  12. The first book was Godswulf Manuscript, and while it's perfectly serviceable, Parker was still kinda finding his character. Early Autumn is the best jumping on point, I feel. It's probably the 6th or 7th book in the series, but does the best job of kinda articulating the Spenserian ethos. The other good start is a few books earlier, Promised Land (which is also where the old 80s series chose to adapt as their pilot episode)
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