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  1. Hello fellow Rebels. I am Valkyrie Rising and this will be my second challenge. Im still trying to figure things out, about myself and Nerd Fitness, so I figured this was a good place to start. I'm working hard on preparing for the year ahead but with not a lot of down time between X-Mas and New Years I had some issues trying to decide what my second challenge would be. What are my goals. What am I doing. I keep wanting to do all the things but I have to take it slow and easy due to some health issues I'm still working with and working on. So I'm keeping it simple for one more challenge to try and ingrain in my brain the habits my body needs. Main Goal: To return to the healthy state of being I was in 3 years ago. I don't want to lose a set amount of weight or be able to lift a certain amount of weight or run any races. (Yet) I just want my body back to feeling healthy as it was 3 years ago before cancer. This means getting back into eating healthy instead of just eating whatever is easy or quick or you can choke down without being sick. (Im pretty sure Im a giant mashed potato after 3 years of alot of mashed potatoes). Im barely into my 30's, I want my health back. I want to feel good walking up stairs and running and hiking and going back to Crossfit and eating good food that tastes good. But this is a process and it took 3 years to go from feeling good about myself to WTF BODY stop doing that to me! So to get to this goal here are my challenge goals. Goal 1: I will sleep a minimum of 6 hours a night. I learned the hard way in my previous challenge that if I don't get sleep it ruins my chances at achieving my other goals. Im a zombie, my body breaks down. I can barely manage to get through a work day because my body is still in recovery mode. I'm still recovering from anemia that put me in the hospital with multiple blood transfusions as a side effect of chemo and cancer. So not getting sleep when running on an exhausted body already just compounds the issue. So the key to making sure my other goals are met, which in turn works towards my main goal, is getting a good amount of sleep at night. I probably need 8 but Im not too horrible with this. However with finally being back at work Im noticing a pattern of not getting to sleep as early as I used to so want to keep that from becoming a bad habit. Goal 2: I will plan my meals and prep them ahead of time every week so I can bring them to work with me and avoid bad for me food and meals. I did this last challenge and it worked well once I got the hang of how it works for me. Im going to keep it up this challenge because I want to make it a habit and not a chore. Right now Im struggling to find delicious foods that dont bore me every week. Last challenge I think I had Harissa Chicken with chickpeas for 15 days in a row. So Im hoping this will help my branch out into new areas of cooking again while working to keep my calories and processed foods under control. I relied on convenience foods a lot during chemo treatments when I could eat and so I became too dependent on takeout, Grub Hub and stuff out of a box or can. Goal 3: Healthy Mind and Body needs a healthy environment. I need to clean my house. So my house isn't horrible. However trying to take care of myself and my home I had to make choices. At one point my closet rod fell and (Im ashamed to admit) I was too weak to lift it back up so alot of my clothes stayed laying on my closet floor. My clean laundry is piled on the guest room spare bed and when I need to get ready for work I go in there and pick through and run them through the dryer to get rid of wrinkles. My dishes get washed but sometimes I dont unload the dishwasher for a day or two. I have wood floors downstairs but upstairs is carpet and Ive been avoiding trying to drag the vacuum upstairs so the carpets are probably not in the best of shapes. In other words the house isnt a mess but its a mess. So Im going to clean one of the big rooms each week and one of the little rooms each week. Big rooms: Kitchen. Living Room. Bedroom. Master Bath. Little rooms: Guest room. Dining Room. (Just because I havent used it for anything in like..2 years so its clean just unused and dusty.) Guest bathroom. Half bath. Theres one room however that needs to see the light of day. It needs scrubbing from top to bottom, cleaning, airing out with fresh cold winter air. The computer room where I have lived for the last few years and existed. Its been my salvation. Playing games, talking to my online friends in games and through Discord. Wow, Destiny, Elder Scrolls. The fantasy world helped me forget the reality and made things easier but it needs to be returned to it's cleaner state. Bookshelves are empty from where I took books out and then let them pile on the floor. Cords are a mess from getting a new rig and not making it nice and neat behind my desk. New consoles means theyre all just stacked on top of each other, not good for heat issues and such I know. This is a big project so one week it will just be the computer room/3rd bedroom. So those are my goals. A little simple but with the start of the New Year my goal is keeping the healthy habits Ive started so they stay just that. Habits. Thanks and HAPPY NEW YEAR to you all. Oh, and just like last time.
  2. OH HI. Some of you (probably not a lot) already know me but I'll introduce myself anyway: I'm Virago! I've been a Nerd Fitness reader for a loooong time, I went to CNF 2015, and I even used to post here sometimes - but I'm horrible at forums Anyway, since I'm also the Rebel Support Leader at Nerd Fitness, and since I'm going to be helping Spezzy out with the forums now that she's COACHING FULL TIME FOR NF (AAAAAAHHHH HOW COOL IS THAT!!!!?!), I'm going to take another crack at a battle log. I've always wanted one here, and just been too scared/overwhelmed to do it. Well guess what: it's respawn time!!! More introductions (and, you know, battle-logging) to come, but for now I'm going to hit publish before I chicken out. LET'S DO THIS, NERDS!
  3. Rangering back up again, due to my incessant need to do all the things all the time. I imagine the main goal in this challenge would be prioritization, time management, and accountability. 1. Weekly Task List Because I've gotten used to [what I perceive as] chaotic and overwhelming schedules, I tend to wing it in life. Not only does it make my schedule even more unmanageable, I tend to miss a lot of important stuff as well. As said in Extreme Ownership, discipline equals freedom. I'll be working on my task list and priorities at the beginning of the week, and do my best to accomplish them. 2. Follow The Program I'm running a marathon on the first week of January, and I'm not sure why. I tried training for it classically by slowly ramping up the miles but the volume was killing me and eating up my entire day (even though I was able to hatch some sweet Pokemon out of it). Now I'm following Brian MacKenzie's 12-week program from The 4-hour Body, as it sounds more in line with my situation and goals (i.e. having a life other than running) and programming for oneself sucks. We'll see what happens. I would also like to maintain 1-2 BJJ sessions a week, and get some handstands in; nothing too crazy--just play and practice. 3. 22 Push-ups I was tagged by one of my students in the 22 Push-ups 10 days ago. I'm doing it. I'm not tagging anyone; I'm just doing it and if someone sees it or makes a donation, great. But I'd like to see it through, with 12 more days to go. Whether the movement is helping or not is beyond me, but I have had my own (now funny) experience(s) with it, so I don't really think I doubt my [primary] intentions. 4. Side Quest: Sleep Tracking Because I love sleep.
  4. I'm busy, really busy. I have a lot of things that I do and that I want to do well. I'm kind of in a funny exploratory place right now, where I'm trying to figure out how to do all the things I want to do, how to do them well, and how to feel like doing my very best is enough. Maybe I am totally delusional but I'm starting to wonder if maybe it IS possible for me to DO ALL THE THINGS. let's see, ok? I mean, it feels delusional, after I could only barely check in during the last challenge. but I'm up for it. * restrict the calories last challenge reminded me that yes, when you diet, it works. I did 2 weeks of a mild cut + good exercise and I saw my weight start to trend down instead of trend up. which is GOOD. SUPER GOOD. so, keep restricting the calories. * do the exercises. same old set of things: running tae kwon do body weight. I really need to work this back in, it's not going to be optional / as you will any more. this challenge I want getting this more incorporated into life as my ultimate measuring stick. my husband is super into running right now, and I'm so excited for him. he's got this super busy program mapped out and maybe out of FOMO I started to look at other training programs also. for YEARS I've avoided intermediate training programs because they have you running 5-6 times a week, and it's just super hard to think I can fit this in to my already packed life. BUT, I am going to increase my distance, and maybe start BW days with a little warmup run (or finish them with a warmup run?). example intermediate training program. work up to 4-5 days of running eventually, instead of 3. * get the sleep. yo, this is imperative. without sleep, getting up for regular exercise is nearly impossible. I have 2 late meetings during this challenge, so the rest of the time it's UP TO ME. that said, there's potentially 2 work trips to manage round, but I should be able to get this straight this week. * do your best. I've been thinking about all the things that I want to accomplish, and where my goals lie. I took the first step today to start working with a life coach, and for the next 4 weeks I want to really establish that process and confirm if it will work for me or not. I am really happy with my life. I'm really happy with all my interests and opportunities, both personal and professional. But I feel stressed about them - like I"m not being responsive enough, or that that I'm not able to make enough room for them. I want so figure out some tips to help with those things. so, do your best means do this. and do your best. the things I want to track are: how about them calories? did I do the bw workouts? did I get the sleep? and did I do my best. ok! let's do all the things!!!
  5. Injured ankle, boo. I'm banned from squatting, I can deadlift, but the PT would rather I didn't (so I won't *sigh*), so what does that leave?!?!?!?! BENCH! All the bench Bench in the morning Bench in the evening Bench in a pink tutu?? My last few lifting sessions are some combination of: Bench OHP dumbell stuff core stuff pull up/chin up stuff I should be SO JACKED by the time my ankle is fixed! As far as actual goals go, this shall mainly be a temporary placeholder. I really want to make some zero week goals. Zero week: Pick a new program. I am debating between: 1) Signing up for the Gold Medal Bodies Elements class (linked) - least stressful, perscribed workouts, and I think would be super helpful 2) Going in depth with the NF academy (which will still require some thought) - moderately stressful 3) Continuing on doing my own thing - most stressful This will be in addition to all the benching, of course. I really just need something to do on my off days, and yoga is a no go. So I need something else. I'm currently considering entering a competition bench only in January. We shall see. Possibly explore premium trial of Eat This Much - I like it, but I wish I had some of the premium features. But I've been hesitant to 'waste' my free trial on a week I won't be home. So I'll either go ahead and start it even though I'm going to be in a wedding this weekend, or I'll pick a two week time period to do it (the trial is 14 days long) I've been doing this thing where I don't eat dinner? Would not recommend. I also just need to get back to the basics a bit, so I'm going to make an excel (WHATZ UP EXCEL NERDS) and see how much that actually is. I feel silly for having a hard time keeping up, but the more I think about it, the more complicated it is, so it makes me feel less silly.
  6. I'd contemplated starting a Battle Log for some time now, but wasn't sure of the point. The point is here! . ^ yup, right there. I have completed my personal training sessions and have achieved my secondary goal weight. So Chapter 1 is complete. Now I have to learn how to go solo, and what I want to do next. Step 1: Starting Nerd Fitness Academy I joined last month, but I'll be using it as my new path. I was categorized into Level 4, and I want to defeat the previous bosses before I really start progressing. I just hit week 6 emails, so I'll be actually going through those starting now. Step 2: Workout Accountability If others are with me I will work out when sick, on shark week, etc., but I'm prone to making excuses when I'm solo. I need to learn how to not. Sundays: with brother and husband Week 1: MWF - husband has personal trainer on F, so I will meet at his gym Week 2: TTh - husband has personal trainer on T, so I will meet at his gym So danger days (DANGA!) are M, W, Th, and I have one W per month when I have to be somewhere by 6, so this makes it especially difficult. On the easier side, my gym is in the same parking lot as my car, so at least there's no excuse there. I'm at a local chain, and will be upping my membership so I can go to any location at any time. Step 3: Goals I need to figure them out. I'm happy about maintaining the weight, but would like to adjust my fat/muscle percentages (they're about even right now) and if I gain more weight in muscle, huzzah! I also want to get to chinup/pullup, and increase mah gaiiiinz, but unsure how to go about doing that quite yet. I'm feeling pretty good at my current nutrition macros, and I'm good at keeping track, so there may be adjustments but for now I'm leaving that alone.
  7. In my challenges so far the focus has been on trying to master a narrow choice of skills - handstands, backflips and Spanish. I've had some good progress, but there seem to be a few dangers with focusing too narrowly: even the most well-intentioned training can fail to produce success on a specific skillthere's a risk of overtraining (haha maybe not with Spanish, but seriously I can feel I've stressed out my sternum with excessive handstands this year)adding more variety to a narrow choice of hobbies makes it all extra funTherefore, the theme for this challenge will be variety! My motivation will remain to become proficient at gymnastics/tricking and related interesting Assassin skills. You know how in some video games they have those bonus levels, where you just run around like some beserk Supermarket Sweep contestent collecting extra point or lives within a short time limit? Well this challenge for me is going to be like that. I have 43 days and a checklist of items to collect. I'll never get them all, but the challenge is to get lots of them I'm going to have to take it easy with the handstand-type skills, so the minor injury in my sternum disappears rather than becomes a major problem. for that reason, I'm taking a three-week break from anything of the sort. Challenge #1: Make as much progress as possible with a variety of acrobatic skills! Rules: each item selected is worth 0.25 stat pointsthere are 4.00xSTR, 6.00xDEX and 3.00xCHA availablemaximum possible loot: +3 STR, +4 DEX and +2 CHA (and I'll be astonished if I get anywhere near this!)I'll mark each one with an 'X' if/when I achieve the goal __slackline: a friend bought one and so I have an opportunity to learn this! So far I can only balance for a few seconds and taking a step makes me fall off DEX (X) : walk a full 10 metres without falling off CHA (X) : + bonus points for doing this DEX (X) : consistently change direction without falling off __frontflips: currently doing them from a springboard to a crashmat but they look more like a forward roll that somehow avoids the ground, so I need to work on actually jumping before the flip DEX (X) : get some height so these are landed consistently on crashmats DEX (X) : no longer need springboard for this move DEX ( ) ; can consistently land onto the thinner mats CHA ( ) : + bonus points for the item above DEX ( ) : can safely land on thinner mats without needing prep beforehand (only counts if it's safe) CHA ( ) : can safely land on grass CHA ( ) : + bonus points for the item above __hopak: there's this crazy move some Ukrainian dancers do that requires some insane leg strength and I want to learn it: STR ( ) : learn to do this half-decently STR ( ) : able to keep this going for 20 seconds __cartwheel: embarassingly, I never learned to do these, and when I try them my feet only go to shoulder height. Time to learn them! DEX ( ) : some definite progress DEX ( ) : can sometimes do proper straight cartwheels CHA ( ) : can consistently do proper straight cartwheels DEX ( ) : can do these properly on both my left- and right-hand side __round-offs: cartwheels with extra movement! DEX ( ) : decent examples on the tumble track STR ( ) : can do these well on hard surfaces DEX ( ) : can do these properly on both my left- and right-hand side __backflips: I've been practising these for ages and still need a spotter to make it around safelyDEX (X) : any definite progressDEX (X) : no longer need spotters on the tumble track!CHA (_) : + bonus points for the item aboveDEX ( ) : safely unassisted on a hard surface (only counts if it's safe!)DEX ( ) : + bonus points for the item aboveCHA ( ) : safely unassisted on a hard surface without needing any prep beforehandCHA ( ) : + bonus points for the item above __handstands: had myself balancing for 4-5 seconds before taking a break to avoid over-trainingSTR (X) : 5-second holds again after taking a breakDEX (X) : 6-second holdsCHA ( ) : 7-second holdsDEX ( ) : 8-second holdsSTR ( ) :10-second holdsCHA ( ) : + bonus points for achieving 10-second handstandDEX ( ) : comfortably handstand into a forward roll (I only pirouette or bridge flop out of handstands so far...) __front handsprings: I can do poor handsprings on the tumble track. I should learn to do good onesDEX ( ) : considerably improve at doing theseSTR ( ) : have good form and powerful front handsprings on the tumble trackDEX ( ) : become able to do these without the tumble track for supportCHA ( ) : become sufficiently consistent at these that they can be done on grass __backwards walkover: going from a bridge to a handstand and going over the other side... I've never tried this!DEX ( ) : some useful practice of kicking up in a bridgeDEX ( ) : some useful practice of backwards walkovers from a raised position (to make it easier)CHA ( ) : able to do this moveSTR ( ) : + bonus points for doing a backwards walkover __muscle-up: I can do 5-10 pull-ups with good form. Next step is to learn a muscle up:STR (X) : some decent practice of the different componentsDEX ( ) : learn to do a "kipping" muscle-upSTR ( ) : able to muscle-up with less leg swingingSTR ( ) : able to muscle-up with good form __L-sit: tried this for the first time last week and it's haaard to even do a cheat version... This will be awesome for training my core:STR (X) : 10-second tuck holdDEX ( ) : split-second L-sitSTR ( ) : 5-second L-sit __plyometric pike jumps: jump up and touch your toes with straight legs on every consecutive jump. Excellent leg, core, and active flexibility exercise.STR ( ) : able to do 20 consecutively __powerlifting: in my first challenge I wanted to get to a combined strict press + bench press weight of 100kg, but abandoned this because of an injury. I'm now at 41kg (90lb) strict press and 56kg (123lb) bench press and have a small plateau to fight through in order to accomplish this:STR ( ) : improve at all (98kg total)STR ( ) : succeed (100kg total)STR ( ) : + bonus points for achieving 100kg Challenge #2: consistently do conditioning exercises 5 times per week. I must do 3 conditioning exercises each day for this to count. Suitable examples include:gymnastics, weightlifting, capoeira class etc,pull-ups or variations in the parkcore exercises such as V-sit sit-upsplyometricsanything else suitable (grip trainer doesn't count as I found it to be ineffective)+3 STA: A: 30 times in 6 weeks B: 28 times in 6 weeks C: 24 times in 6 weeks D: 18 times in 6 weeks __Progress: week 1: ___+_++ (3) week 2: +_+++++ (6) week 3: +_+++++ (6) week 4: +_+++_+ (5) week 5: __+_++_ (3) week 6: +_+++_+ (5) (B) Challenge #3: explore food! I eat pretty healthily, and also in huge amounts. Especially vegetables and porridge. However, I don't know how much I actually eat in terms of macronutrients, so I'm going to find out, by tracking everything I eat for a week and calculating the following macronutrients: carbs (all)carbs (sugar)fatsproteintotal caloriesI'm also going to experiment with Intermittent Fasting to see how that works. There are several ways of doing it, so I'm going to briefly try two contrasting ones, and report back with my experiences. +1 CON, +1 WIS: track macros A: accurate track for a week C: something less that is still useful to me tracked macros on 01 May - 07 Mayanalysed it for conclusions and posted results to this thread (A) +1 CON: try IF A: try two ways C: try one way tried "skipping dinner" fast on 30 Apr - 01 May (19 hours, successful)tried "skipping brunch" fast on 9 May - 10 May (14 hours, didn't work so well)tried "skipping brunch" fast on 16 May - 18 May (16 hours, felt lame afterwards) (C+)
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