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  1. Strength training challenge is HERE, brosciencers! I spent all summer doing conditioning work to prep for my annual Savannah Century bike event, so I'm ready for a change up both mentally ("wallballs? AGAIN?") and physically, as six conditioning workouts a week have put me in a state that I can most easily describe as cat-like: sleeping 18 hours a day, eating everything, and prone to biting. I was going to call this challenge The Crossover Episode and dedicate it to the greatest TV crossover of all time, Magnum P.I. meets Murder She Wrote, but then I rabbit-holed deep into the youtubes and was reminded of this movie: Oh, my god. This movie. This has to be - along with Breakin' 2: Electric Boogaloo and The Beastmaster - one of the highlights of early 80's terrible cable movies. I cannot get enough of how terrible it is. So this challenge I am going to do primarily strength work, and let the Warrior side of my Rangering come out to play. I may or may not wear bad 80's gang colors. Since I can't figure out how to put photos up anymore, you'll never know. I am also for once going to use the S.M.A.R.T. goals guidelines for the most part, to keep me on one goal and not wander off into complete life-reinvention. I did tweak the guidelines a little... but as the Mantis likes to say, the day I use something completely "as directed" will be the day the earth slowly decays from orbit and plunges into the sun. (See also: Rangerbrain) SMART goals are usually Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Results-focused, and Time-based. I give you: S.M.A.A.R.T Goals: SPECIFIC: I want to put 10% on my 1RM for three lifts: Back Squat, Deadlift, Sled Push. I will do this by focusing my gym work on lifting: 4 reps at 4 rep Max for almost all moves. This (according to someone I don't entirely trust on the internet) will give me the greatest strength gains with minimal added mass. Lower reps would give me greater absolute strength gains, but I have to remember I am not Kara Webb and I want to be smart about injury prevention. I have to figure out my 1RM for squat and deadlift, so I'll be doing that Sunday and Monday. The last time I was squatting for powerlifting I could do 175 for 3 reps but that was months ago. It's probably less now. But that was also as part of a pyramid set that started with 90 pounds for 20 reps and went up 10 pounds and down 2 reps with each set, so who knows what I can do as a stand-alone. I tested my max Sled yesterday. I can push 210 pounds for 200 feet three times. I'd already done DT right before it so I wasn't totally fresh, but it's a good baseline. MEASURABLE: Even my limited math faculties can determine what a 10% increase is. Better yet, there's a calculator in my phone. ACHIEVABLE: I think 10% is attainable. It's [whips out phone] 21 pounds for the sled, and I'll know the other two numbers by Monday after my second 1RM workout. ACCOMPANIED: This second "A" is where we begin to veer off the standard a little. I almost always train solo (even when I ride with the Mantis, we start together and then after 5 miles he goes off to set fire to the pavement while I slog along) and frankly that shit is getting old. You are all lovely humans and I adore you all, but there's no getting away from the fact that y'all are on the other side of a computer screen somewhere and I'd like to build some sort of a workout crew to hang out with. I actually have one good friend who, like me, does a bastardized form of crossfit, and another who has done one Spartan Race and is signed up for another, and a couple of other people I know who do various workout things, so I'm going to try and rope some of them into active activities (hiking, trail run, climb everest, whatever). I'm also going to force myself to join a couple of cycling groups to do group rides with people, and I may book a session with one of the trainers at the gym so I've got some extra support there. I should check out the "local nerd" board on here too. I know there's a couple of people in my area-ish. My boyfriend joined a gym and is working out again (he's by far the fitter of the two of us) so I'm going to wrangle one "couples" workout a week somehow. Although I'd like to take a moment to be a dick and point out that he joined Planet Fitness. REAL FOOD: I'm not going to talk about nutrition because dealing with it makes me want to gnaw off both my hands, but I'm going to go back on a paleo-real-food-eating track, which seems to keep me from eating like an unsupervised four-year-old. I guess this means giving up tacos for a few weeks. Gah. Just kill me now. TAUNTING: I am here to LIFT and I want to hear some smack talk to motivate me. I openly invite any and all Warriors including @Br0din, @Vincent Van Bro (nice new handle, dude), @Emerald_Dragonfly, @TiffanyD (fave warrior girl, yo!) @elvenengineer, and @Sam Ashen to come talk trash on my puny crossfit gains. Extra points given for humor. I wish @hermionegainser was still here. I miss that girl. Motivational smack trash also invited from Rangers, obviously. Best motivational takedown gets a mixtape of music I stole from @DarK_RaideR's various threads. I'm done with the carrot. I AM HERE TO EMBRACE THE STICK. Warriors... come out to plaaaaaaaayaaay....
  2. I just got back from an Epic Trip. To some of my favorite places. Where we hung out with a few of my closest friends. Coming home has been... an adjustment. I haven't actually been that happy to be home. I miss my life in the Steiermark, even though that was more than 5 years ago. Coming back put me back in a beautiful place, but it's still a neighborhood on the far side of a town that has no Backerei, Konditorei, oder Bahnhof. We do have a couple PNW-style coffee shops. Trouble is, I'd trade a convenient Starbucks any day for twisting streets and a little café. But this is my reality right now; I live here with my bf and our families. Europe is a possibility in the future (especially for university!), but I am accepting that being here is my right now. The trouble is... Kummerspeck (lit. sadness bacon) due to Heimweh... and it`s turning me into a Schweinhund. Instead of getting mad at myself, I`m getting back into the swing of things. I need to see some stats on my pudginess. 5 days/wk weigh in, logged in a google doc. I need to re-establish my range of motion and core. My ROM test for my shoulders is good with push ups, hips by squats, core gets better with sit ups or wheel rolls. I can space that stuff over the day to keep myself moving. CF can also be used to knockout a bunch of those (or a day`s worth).100 each of [squats, push ups, sit-ups] 5x/wk My language skills are slipping. Duolingo or something... I so much enjoyed speaking German again that it is really hard for me to want to pick up French again. But this is where I`m headed to in a few months, and I said when I was hired that I would be fluent in 2 years. That was 3 years ago. Anyone who is a native French speaker and would be willing to work with a beginner, drop me a line! French 5 days/wk Any other ideas, folks?
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