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  1. Challenge #9 For the first/second challenge in 2016 (and the first ones under the new rules) I decided to go with the general Rebels instead of spending time in the cozy assassins guild (aka I'm getting out of my comfort zone). This "trip" (and further ones in the future to other guilds) had actually been planned for some time, now seems like the perfect opportunity. The overall Challenge Goal will not change from last year (as implicated by the challenge theme) and will probably take some more challenges: getting rid of the belly (aka take the fat out of skinny-fat), measured by bodyfat percentage. Right now I'm at about 23%, the goal for this cycle of challenges is less than 15%. With the old format I'd planned to get down to under 20% after this challenge, but for 4 weeks, that is probably too much.... I'll go with a goal range of 20-21%. Background story (this time it takes place in the universe of Mark Anthonys Last Rune series) Everyone at the Grey Tower said I was crazy. But I'm not. I have a goal. The runespeakers are just hiding in their books ignoring the real world. They know the end of the world is coming, but do they do anything? No! Sure, they are looking for the solution. But nothing seems good enough, so they continue looking.... I've been on this quest since I became a Master of the Grey Tower myself. There is only one dragon left in Eldh. He has the power to stop the Pale King. Maybe he will not help us or not in the way I hoped, but still my quest is better than those of my brothers wasting time. I cannot give up. I have gathered the necessary knowledge and the runes are guiding me. The only thing I have to do is follow through. Through the wastelands of the east, the free cities of the south and now the desert of the south. I'm wandering, though I'm not lost.... I have a goal! QUEST 1 : NUTRITION I'm putting a little more weight on quality in this area. Still going to track my intake, like last challenge. But I also want to do some paleo batch cooking. Mission: Track Calorie/Protein/Fat/Carb intake and stay within range Eat at least 80% paleo Batch cook something paleo once per week QUEST 2 : SIMPLE & SINISTER [ I OF XII ] This will be the year of Kettlebell for me. Each challenge will have a Swings and TGU quest programmed after Simple & Sinister. The miniumum amount of work for the whole year is 30000 Swings and 1500 TGU (per side), but technically it could be up to 36600/1830. But that is all just a background workout and shouldn't interfere (negatively I mean, positive results are hoped for of course) with whatever I focus on in my challenges. Mission: 50 - 100 Swings per day (either two or one-handed) usually with a 24kg but on light days with 16kg 5 Turkish Get-Ups per side per day with a 12kg or a 16kg an occasional day off is fine like once a week QUEST 3 : INTERMITTENT FASTING I used to have good experiences with those. But stopped because it interfered with work (meals were a very important social thing at my old workplace). Now it is time to get them Fasting days back. Mission: Once a week don't eat for 24 hours QUEST 4 : STRENGTH (ENDURANCE) WORKOUT This quests purpose is two-fold. Like last challenge it is supposed to keep my strength at a good level (don't want loose them gainz). Also since a pure calorie burn workout quest didn't work out (haha) last time, I'm incorporating this into the strength goal. Mission: Minimum Strength Workout (one exercise out of two of Push/Pull/Hinge/Squat) 4x per week Strength Endurance Worktout (like EMOM or for time or AMRAP for example) 2x per week Maximum Strength Workout (3 exercises out of one of Push/Pull/Hinge/Squat) 2x per week LIFE QUEST : JOB + APPARTMENT HUNTING This interim solution is coming to an end (like it should), now I need a new job and place to live for about the next 15 months (aka a base of operations and a budget to tackle those big life quests) Mission: Send out applications Since I can't see how the Character Creation and Epic Questing integrates with the stat points I'll leave them out for now.
  2. Here we are at the beginning of a new year. It's a time that I spend like Janus - looking both back and forwards. Thinking about what I've accomplished and using that reflection to plan out the new year. Unlike most of the population, I do pretty well at keeping "New Year's Resolutions" because I have a plan. And I have this group to help encourage me to follow through. (Thank you!) Prior Years2013 - The Return of the JediI stopped GAINING weight and starting working up to running and doing strength training again. Really, I’d let all workouts and sports slide since about 2005 (when the Temple of the Jedi online group that I had run imploded and I lost my confidence and focus). I didn’t run any of obstacle course races that I planned that year, despite Cline's excellent coaching. In fact, I didn’t run any races at all that year since I kept spraining my formerly-broken ankle. But I kept recovering and training. I didn't give up - and that was a major accomplishment. I had gotten heavily into emotional eating and lots of wine while working on my doctorate - so this was a watershed year for improvements in my diet. I wasn’t perfect (I still struggle with eating and drinking when stressed), but I woke up and started making better choices most of the time. I probably improved my BF %, but I wasn't measuring it yet. 2014 - The Quest for the Mal RavenneThis was a good year. I lost 14 pounds and dropped from 37.33% to 33.5% body fat during the year. I can now run a 5K straight. And I am able to do pull-ups with only 1/2 of my weight in assistance on the pull-up machine. I deadlifted 85 pounds for the first time. I have been much better at eating healthy foods, drinking water, and cutting WAY back on both coffee and wine. I think I am finally turning my life around and setting a good base for getting BACK to being the person I want to be. Weight at start of 2015: 167.1 lbs and body fat % ~ 33.5%. I’d been down to 165, but it bounced back up over the holidays. I will have to be really very good the rest of this week in order to win my t-shirt at the gym!!! Overarching goal for 2015: weight <= 149 lbs and body fat % <= 31%, although I certainly hope to do better than that. I’m setting monthly milestones instead of challenge milestones right now. I can figure out the goal weight for each challenge from that. How will I do it??Running: increase my long run from 3 to 5 miles each week and continue 5K race training as in 2014. I've been pretty steady in the running/cardio category, but I also now have a full-time job again and will need to adjust. I am thinking that I may actually become morning runner again. Strength training: prep for OCRs based on Fitocracy’s Tough Mudder training guide and a gradual progression of some basic strength training exercises. Strength training is one of the things that I really don't tend to enjoy, but I like the results. It will be a lot of upper body work and basics like deadlifts and squats. But also things like planks and Jacob's Ladder and climbing at the local climbing wall. Oh yea, I also hate heights. Better get good at burpees. Eat like I give a f*uck: IIFYM + Loseit.com Premium + Thug Kitchen cookbook. Seriously, my daughter gave me this cookbook for Christmas, and it is a fun read. But it also has great recipes for making basics (like ketchup) from scratch so that you have healthy alternatives for most things. The cookbook is vegan - I don't intend to go completely vegan, although I never had a weight problem when I was a vegetarian. I honestly don't think GRAINS are the problem with the US industrial diet. Refined foods - especially corn syrup are. Yes, throw things at me for blasphemy, but I'm going to focus on cooking up a good omnivore diet that focuses much more on vegetables and whole grains than meat ..... and in true Rebel fashion, we'll see what happens. Supporting GoalsHave an adventure every weekDo one each of these:Charity 5Ks (TBD)Mother's Day Walk (2 miles)Bubble Run http://www.bubblerun.com/events/minneapolis/Color Run http://thecolorrun.com/twin-cities/Light Run http://www.torchlight5k.com/page/show/502315-event-infoZombies Run TBDWarrior Dash https://www.warriordash.com/location/2015-warrior-dash-minnesota/Spartan Sprint TBDTough Mudder https://toughmudder.com/events/2015-twin-citiesArcheology/Ancient History trip .... MAYBE. This is a stretch goal because of the new job. I need to do the cruise and possibly a wedding this year; so I'm not sure where another vacation will fit into 2015.Cruise to AlaskaHiking the local trails, especially the Superior Hiking TrailIngress!!!Geocaching100 geocachesHide cachesTravel bugs Overcome my two left feetI am generally clumsy and have been since I matured quickly and young. Karate classes helped me improve greatly - and I want to get back to feeling like I move easily and gracefully through my environment again. Wear contacts - peripheral vision really helps me, but I have trouble getting contacts that I can use day in and day out. We never can quite get the fit and the prescription right. Yoga - I had been dreaming that I was doing the crow pose. Why?? No clue. But I'm interested in doing hand balancing, in large part because high school gym class was a nightmare that I'd like to overcomeDance classesMartial arts classesParkourClimbingHandstands!!!(Re)build a baseAfter moving, it takes a while to figure out where everything goes. A lot of my basement gym stuff got tossed in a corner - it's time to find places for all of it and start using it. Also ... other tools need to be purchased. I really like LoseIt's minimal frills interface and vetted nutrition information, and since I'm tackling the difficult task of losing weight while building muscle, I need to pay attention to intake and macros.Pullup bar installed (Thanks to hubby, this one is done before the challenge starts!)LoseIt! premium membershipClean out and organize the kitchen - then use it!Make my own sandbag(s)750words.com?Basement workout areaGarage gymAgility training locationObstacle training locationParkour trainingGet my mojo back This goal has "underpants gnome" written all over it. I know it. But a BIG part of being fit - for me - means winning the HEAD game as much as fixing my kitchen or creating a workable exercise plan. I KNOW how to be fit. I have been very fit at different times in my life, and then something happens, and it all falls apart. So, my first challenge goal will be to put myself on the couch through writing 750 words PER DAY, exploring what factors support and which factors derail my healthy lifestyle. 750 words per day (http://750words.com/???) “on the couch†and see what comes up in terms of goals and barriersOther challenges .... TBD
  3. Hi! I'm 0gravity I'm starting a log here to keep all of my things in one place. A short intro - I'm a 35 year old guy who just trying to stay in shape. Bouldering is my sport, and I spend more time doing that than any other physical activity. I have specific goals and training techniques specifically to improve at bouldering, which you will see below eventually. I also until very recently weight trained regularly, and recently I have switched into trying to develop specific bodyweight only skills such as the handstand, and have left the weights behind for now. I was climbing pretty well in the Fall, then I had elective surgery in November to remove hardwear from my ankle. I was unable to climb for four weeks, and now I have been climbing indoors for four weeks, after four more weeks (February 15) of climbing indoors I will be able to climb outside again. My work hours are a big obstacle to me. Currently I work 3AM to 3 PM, three days a week. In March, I will be switching to the opposite shift, 3PM to 3AM. I think this will be much better for me and involve less caffeine and hateful alarm clocks. My short term goals (by February 15 - taken from the challenge thread) 1. Complete a v6 indoors updated: Complete a v7 indoors 2. Campus 1-5-9 (metolius spacing) - each side - will explain later updated: Campus 1-6-10 both sides 3. Complete sets of 5x5seconds of m4/m4 and 35slope/35slope on beastmaker 1 hangboard - again needs explanation, later 4. advanced tuck front lever x10 seconds 5. one arm lockoff x10 seconds each side 6. freestanding handstand x15 seconds 7. tuck planche x10 seconds 8. wall headstand pushups x5 with full ROM 9. pistols x5 each side 10. Run 5Km in <30 minutes Medium term goals - (by April 1) 1. Finish Pow Pow (v8), at the Sad Boulders, which has been my project off and on for years Long term goals - (by 12/31/15) 1. Planet of the Apes (v6), Joe's Valley 2. Gibbs Cave (v8), Squamish 2. Finish Soul Slinger (v9) at the Buttermilk Epic Goals (any time, but if I don't get them by ~age 45, most of these will never happen) Stained Glass (v10), Bishop Xavier's Roof (v11), Bishop Mandala (v12), Bishop Spectre (v13), Bishop Midnight Lightning (v8), Yosemite Valley The Orb (v8), Rocktown The Shield (v12), Little Rock City Karma (v11), Fontainebleau Rainbow Rocket (v11), Fontainebleau Duel (v11), Fontainebleau Shosholoza (v12), Rocklands
  4. July 16, 2014 Hi guys! I'm back! Lots of things have been going on in my life in the year or so that I've been away, but I've already covered all of that in my profile. So just a brief snap shot: I got hurt. both shoulders and my left hip. I've spent the last year trying to overcome the pain and recover some of my range of motion and now I'm finally in a place where I can pick up from square one, assess my current abilities, set my goals, plan my path to success, and begin recovering lost ground. Goals, for now... Run 10k non-stop. Run 5k in 20 minutes or less. Freestanding Pistol Squat. 3 sets of 10 per leg. One arm push ups. 3 sets of 10 per arm. Freestanding handstand push ups. 3 sets of 10 Front/back body levers. 60 seconds, full extension. Muscle ups. 3 sets of 10. Injury proof, become Anti-Fragile, and improve mobility. The Plan Physical: Create, and do a bench mark workout in a controlled environment to get a progress point. Build a habit around consistent training and recording progress and stats on a weekly basis. Build a habit of stretching after every workout, and do lots of mobility work on cardio days. Be sure to log workouts daily, and do stats and pics every third week.Dietary Build a habit around tracking what I eat using MyFitnessPal. Incorporate my current line of supplements into an approximation of a paleo diet. While tracking my diet, it is more important to be full on good foods, than to hit a certain calorie goal and be hungry. Today I am super busy with errands and "I just got back from camp" stuff, so my next post, tomorrow, will include my workout plan and starting stats. See you then. -Church-
  5. Second Challenge [ September 16th – October 27th ] Endangered Initiation Part I Where I came from. Where I went after. So, I'm gonna change some things for this challenge. Not the substance or motivation of my quests or goals though, they just got a nerdy renaming. While my long-term goal is still loose my skinny-fat and lean up (Motivation: Health + Looks), I'll tackle different things in my main quest to get there, building on what I've done in the last challenge and learning from my mistakes. Thanks to kiwis great inspiration I'm going to (try to) post daily updates this time instead of half-weekly (which didn't really work out anyway). And I've also decided to write a background story to push the motivation a little bit further, inspired by various others. BACKGROUND STORY The grand master had summoned the initate right after sunset. “Youngling, you know three pillars of the Jedi there are: the Force, Knowledge and Self-Discipline. Strong in the force you may be, but your lack in the other two it makes only more obvious. Improved you have some recently. But that you've done before, only to deteriorate again.†Being reminded of his failures over the last years since he'd entered the temple, the initiates cheeks started to glow slightly red. “As things stand now – here to warn, not discourage you I am, mind – pass the initiate trials you will not!†“What will happen then?†He asked with fear in his eyes. “Asked to leave the order you will be not, I think, but without passing the iniate trials a padawan you cannot become! No shame it is to join the Jedi Service Corps, have you thought about which branch in that case you would like to join?†“The educational or explorational branch for sure, I know I can do a lot of good there! But that's not where my path leads me, I know it.†“Good it is, that you are prepared for whatever your future will be, but right you may be.... I have a feeling, too, even greater good will come to pass, if you become a padawan and then a knight! Still time there is for you, to master your weaknesses.†The initiate mustered all his strength and met the grand masters gaze. “I'll try, master!†“No!†The grand master shook his head vigorously. “Do it or do it not, there is no try!†“But how can I meet the standard of the trials, then? What do I have to do, Master?†“Your first problem, youngling, is your body; not the body of a Jedi it is. Don't think your sneaking out of the temple to savor the food, you've been used to, has gone unnoticed. Lessened that may you have, but still your are weakened by that, dead weight you carry around with you.†The initiate recognized this old problem of his immediately, but he knew the way to fix and also that he was on a good way to do so if he didn't have a fallback now, so he just nodded. “Next thing the control over your body is. As a padawan you'll learn how to use your skill to alter and control what is around you, but that you only can do, if control your own body you can. More about the basics of combat you must also learn on your way to this goal, because that is how the order teaches you control and discipline over yourself even in a stressful situation.†He knew he'd had ups and downs over the years, with the latter exceeding the former by far. With consistency since the beginning this would've been an easy thing to achieve, but consistency was something, that had mostly been lacking here. It wasn't taught by the teachers of the order, because they couldn't teach it to him, he knew he had to handle that himself. “Not least but last, from knowledge grows wisdom, therefore, while you concentrate on mastering your physical self forget to study and research you must not!†Almost forgotten the various tasks were, he had been given by the librarians. Although he liked them, even had some of them selected himself, they had been easily pushed back by his other more urging-seeming duties. MAIN QUEST – Mastering the Pillar of Self-Discipline (Leaning Up/Body Recomp) GOAL I – Dead weight reduction (+2CHA, +1WIS, +1CON) “A Jedi with the force he flows like a leave, not a dead rock he is, blocking its current!†While I want to continue with general paleo living and IF without the need to monitor everything I eat, for the sugar demon, that has befallen me, another approach is more helpful, I think. Eating a lot of fruits and drinking juices and smoothies all the time really satisfied my sweet tooth while going completely paleo, but that tooth has to go now! Therefore I've decided to do a detailed monitoring goal for this challenge. That means: A] Keeping a food journal (macronutrients + sugar + calories), and thereby (hopefully) B] Reducing sugar intake Grading: A – B conditions, but a sugar intake reduction compared to both the start of the challenge AND the week before B – C conditions, plus a sugar intake reduction compared to the start of the challenge or compared to the week before (whichever is easier) C – D conditions, plus keeping a food journal for at least 36 days D – at least 90% Paleo and two 24h IF per week (assigning a passing grade to something I already managed to do in the last challenge seems too easy, but I wanna make those habits really stick) F – less than 90% Paleo or less than two 24h IF GOAL II – Body Control (+2STR, +1DEX, +1STA) “The outer core of self-discipline this is!†Still mostly a calisthenics goal. But I want to expand a little, because I noticed my endurance has been slacking. Do some exercise every day (minus a rest day a week). Although preferably not exactly the same thing two days in a row. Broken down into two subgoals: A] Strength through calisthenics and gym twice a week each B] Speed and Endurance through running twice a week Grading: A+ - A conditions plus able to do Close Push-Ups [2*15], Pull-Ups [2*8], Full One-Leg Squats [2*8], Angled Bridges [2*8], Frog Leg Raises [2*15] after the challenge A – Exercise on 36 ouf of 42 days: at least 11/12 calisthenics, 11/12 gym, 11/12 running B – Exercise on 33 out of 42 days: at least 10/12 calisthenics, 10/12 gym, 10/12 running C – Exercise on 30 out of 42 days: at least 9/12 calisthenics, 9/12 gym, 9/12 running D – Exercise on 27 out of 42 days: at least 8/12 calisthenics, 8/12 gym, 8/12 running F – Exercise on less than 27 out of 42 days GOAL III – Combat Skill (+1CON, +1STA) “Not how to be a warrior you learn here, but how to apply your self-discipline in any situation!†No lightsaber training here, sorry to dissapoint you. I started with karate practice in the middle of the last challenge again after a break of over six months. Need to refocus here a little bit for obvious reasons. Which breaks down into two subgoals again: A] Go to Karate practice twice a week B] Practice one kata and one kihon plus stretch afterwards every night before going to bed and thereby being able to do Heian 1-5 again (just memorywise, not with perfected techniques yet) at the end of the challenge. Grading: A+ - A conditions plus getting an all-clear for green belt examination in december A – Going to Karate practice 11/12, doing the nightly routine at least 36/42 and memorizing Heian 1-5 B – Going to Karate practice 9/12, doing the nightly routine at least 30/42 and memorizing Heian 1-4 C – Going to Karate practice 8/12, doing the nightly routine at least 24/42 and memorizing Heian 1-3 D – Going to Karate practice 6/12, doing the nightly routine at least 18/42 and memorizing Heian 1-2 F – Going to Karate practice less than 6/12 SIDE QUEST – Mastering the Pillar of Knowledge (+5WIS) “A true Jedi is not fooled by informations other give him, he seeks knowledge out himself!†Still writing my masters thesis on this one, but this time more specifics on how to achieve it. Simple hour-counting didn't workout quite that good for the last challenge. I'm going to give myself specific tasks to be done for each next day and grade according to how I fulfilled them. Grading: Daily grading: 1 points if I successfully complete all the tasks for the day, half a point for partially completing them and zero points for no or insufficient completion A – 6 points a week / 36 points per challenge B – 5 points a week / 30 points per challenge C – 4 points a week / 24 points per challenge D – 3 point a week / 18 points per challenge F – 2 point a week or less / 18 points per challenge
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