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Found 20 results

  1. Recently on Catspaw’s challenges... … that’s a big ol’ whitespace there, yo. Okay, so I took a challenge off. That’s allowed; s’good refocus and recharge time. But even though the constant patter of my words here tapered off like sun breaking through rain, I wasn’t taking a break on the other side of the screen. Notable accomplishments since my last challenge include: - 150 lb split jerk - 160 lb clean - 180 lb front squat - Below the brick line - Being a lot calmer work/life wise. - Basically just free-eating successfully. It’s only coincidence that it feels
  2. Next verse, same as the first. Yeah, just like this, only for another 6 weeks. Catspaws gotta blahblahblah.
  3. Catspaw's Head Is The Only Thing In Her Way I need to do some letting go. Slightly less "intense, 100% engaged Catspaw" who strives for perfection or will die trying, and slightly more "whatever, I'm on the right path and having a good time doing it" Catspaw. Cuz sometimes that obsessive effort only makes you less likely to get there. Relax about bulking I'm partway through a bulk and just passed the number that always gets in my head: overweight on the BMI scale for my height -- which is, coincidentally, also the max weightlifting class line for women. And though I actually care a
  4. Catspaw Doesn't PR ... but she does get a hell of a lot stronger. This 6 week challenge is going to be all about getting stronger without PR chasing. In other words, taking Hyrule's advice to heart and focussing on genuine gains, and letting the PRs follow from that, rather than making it a PR-seeking challenge. The PRs will come. I have a crazy busy schedule this 6 weeks including: - 1 week work trip to Zurich - 2 days away from home speaking at a conference - 3 day leadership training - 4 day trip with friends - 3 day manager offsite That means that 19 out of the 42 days of t
  5. There's always that moment. The night before the heroes fight the final battle. It's quiet, somber. A brief time for reflection, a brief time for planning. You recommit yourself to your mission, paradoxically trying to both psych yourself up and calm yourself down. Though no victories may be named in these moments, this is where the real battle begins. Careful preparation and getting yourself into the right mindset is most of the way there. Everything that follows started right here. This challenge I'll be finishing up my cut and then gradually working my way back up to maintenance
  6. Double entendre. Working on lifting form. Working on body comp form. See what I did there? Cutting challenge for me, so what you can expect here is a lot of bitching about being hungry, some huge-effort strength preserving workouts, and taking the opportunity to really work on my lifting form across the board. Just cuz you can’t get stronger doesn’t mean you can’t get awesomer. Wait, why isn’t this thread on page 2 yet? It’s been posted a whole -8 seconds...
  7. RAWR! Primarily a strength-related challenge for me this time. Also a “don’t wuss out on the bulk†challenge, which is a prerequisite for the strength goals. Here’s some shit I pulled out of thin air: Press: +10 lbs (90) Snatch: +5 lbs (100) Bench: +10 lbs (145) Jerk: +10 lbs (135) Clean: +10 lbs (135) Front squat: +10 lbs (165) Back squat: +15 lbs (210) Deadlift: +15 lbs (260) These are just random goals. What I can promise is a lot of "blahblahblah" and six weeks of it. 2015: let's do this.
  8. Catspaw Tests Her Mettle Between the Spartan Sprint (mid Nov), Google GoRuck Challenge (mid Dec), a whole hell of a lot of lifting, and finally a bit of slow bulking, I'm pretty pumped that this is going to be a badass challenge of badassery. What you can expect to see here: I'm planning a hybrid PHAT (non-linear periodization) routine2 power days and 2 hypertrophy daysregular rucks (consistency, not extreme marathon shenanigans), andweekly Hyrule OLY classesBut this also means I need to take better care of myself: more mobility work and stretching,a greater emphasis on rest, recovery, de-
  9. Catspaw Isn't Distracted It's going to be a busy six weeks for me. Some of the things on my plate: A week of being primary on-call (aka: no sleep) plus a week of being secondary on-call. Lots of travel: a trip to Vancouver, two trips to Seattle. Leaving to go climb mountains in Japan for two weeks (end of week 6). Performance review season for all my reports. Taking on a bunch more responsibility at work. So basically it's going to be a challenge just to keep my head above water. The major risk factor is all of the travel and moving pieces and stress just causing things to start tumbling d
  10. Catspaw Has Her Shit Together Hello! I'm Catspaw. And if you don't know me, here's the quick summary: this is my ten zillionth challenge, I like eating delicious things, learning everything about everything, and I'm a bit of a dopamine addict. Throughout this challenge I'm hanging out with nerds in Toronto, New York and San Francisco, as well as working a stressful (but fun!) job, and really focussing on getting my shit together. Hence the name of this challenge. 1) Dial in the food 1800 / 1550 with leangains macros and 8 hr feeding window"Catspaw paleo": rice and some dairy, minimal n
  11. Catspaw Shoves Less Down Her Steak Hole This 6 week challenge goals: Eat a reasonable quantity of food.END OF GOALS. More details later, but here's the gist: I have a lot going on right now. I'm still going to the gym, training reasonably well, heck even hitting PRs, but food quantity has fallen way behind on my list of priorities. Unintentional bulking season ends here. I want to keep this goal nice and simple because I want to actually do it. .... also, I plan to use this thread for rants, workout logs, and similar type Catspaw blahblahblahs. You have been warned.
  12. Catspaw Has No Weaknesses A year and a half ago, I made a challenge to specifically address my weaknesses, and it went awesomely: I busted out my first ever chin-up, managed some decent plank times, and learned a lot about lat engagement. So often our challenges are about improving our strengths, when we would often get much better results by focusing on our weaknesses. That's what this challenge is about. Goal #1: Fix my busticated shoulder How: - Shoulder rehab exercises - Strengthen lats/shoulder muscles - Work on repatterning pushes and pulls Why: - It's been 9 months now and
  13. Catspaw's Simple But Not Easy Challenge Nice, clean, simple goals. Things I've done before and know how to do. But just because it's simple doesn't mean it's easy. It does, however, mean I am totally going to RAWR SMASH my way through this challenge. Be prepared for some epic awesomeness here. Be Strong I want a deadlift and bench PR. A real PR. Not a "best since I got sick" PR, but a "better than I've ever lifted before ever" PR. My body is starting to feel like it's my own again: strong, fierce, capable. I want to take it out for a spin. Deadlift goal: 225x1 (4 total plates,
  14. Like so many others, I finally got talked into making this an official challenge. Brief background: I like lifting heavy things, eating paleo, helping others, and a former abs-chaser. Around April this year I got really sick and everything fell on the floor. Aside from crippling headaches, my lifts have dropped by about 25% across the board, I've gained (doctor's orders) some weight and my hormones are all over the place. Alas. But you can't keep a Catspaw down! I'm finally feeling better enough to start back up at work on Dec 1st -- woohoo -- and I'm going to start reigning in the
  15. No formal NF challenge this time 'round, but I've decided to post a small snippet from my day every day. Will cross-post here for those who are interested. You can expect weird rants, out of context photos, conversations, inspirations, or other random shit. In essence, stories and meandering rambles. Goals are for another time.
  16. The "Catspaw Rises from the Ashes" Challenge "Why do we fall? So that we can learn to pick ourselves up." The last few months have been a huge teacher to me. When your health collapses, you're given the gift of clarity in terms of what really matters. I won't lie: I've had days recently when I wished myself dead so that I wouldn't have to deal with another day of feeling this sick. It has been nothing short of awful. But those lows make the good days that much sweeter. My health issues are an adversary but they are also an opportunity to learn and grow. An opportunity to pick myself
  17. I've been trying to figure out whether or not to participate in this challenge. My last challenge was stopped abruptly when some health issues popped up, and I'm still dealing with them and thus shouldn't really be focussed on something like seeing ab lines. At the same time, I want to keep making progress, I just need to be realistic about dialing it back a little and not making it one of my main daily goals. So maybe that's what this challenge is about for me: figuring out how to make progress into a quiet background process, ever improving but not feeling like an every-hour-of-the-day obs
  18. Now that I'm slimming down for the summer, raw strength is becoming less of a priority, though there is ample room still for ferocity in the gym. I'm pulling inspiration this challenge from the leopard: lithe but powerful. Leopards are lean, agile, supple and fierce, and it is the search for these attributes which brings me back to the assassin's den this challenge. I'm looking forward to hunting with you. 1) Leopards are lean Good start on my cut last challenge after a fun bulk in the winter. It's only gonna get trickier, but I feel like I'm getting a good handle on it, and so I want to kee
  19. Sweet and simple kids. Some things gotta grow, other things gotta shrink. Quantity counts, let's make that happen. Goal #1: Get halfway to pre-bulk size. That means losing: 1.5 cm from 2" above navel2 cm from navel3 cm from hips Goal #2: Through strength comes awesomeness. Add 5% to deadlift and bench (calculated 1RMs), rack pulls (3x3) and hip thrusts (2x10). I want to have reasonable goals given the cut above, but these'll give me something to focus on to ensure workout intensity. Deadlift 1RM: 228 -> 239Bench 1RM: 110 -> 115Rack pulls 3x3: 265 -> 278Hip thrusts 2x10: 1
  20. Change. It's what makes us grow and what makes us grow old. Time ticks ever forwards. Some of life's turns force their change upon you, while other things never change until you do. I've never been one to sit idly by and let time sweep me where it wills. So while all challenges are about change -- our attempt to move forwards towards some ultimate goal -- some challenges have more life "corners" than others. For me, this challenge is divided into many "before"s and "after"s. It's different, it's exciting, and it makes formulating goals tricky. So perhaps, instead of telling you ab
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