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  1. When I set goals for 2020 I was very conservative because I was about to have a baby - couldn't have predicted how much extra reason we would have to go easy on ourselves - so all my goals were related to finding a new balance and rebuilding/re-establishing what I'd won over the years. I allowed myself one bonus goal; writing. I need it for all my mayor life goals. I figure it's going to take me years to learn... and while I made a tiny little bit of progress this year, I'd love to finish the year with something tangible. Main goal; writing habit 5 days a week sit down to write something, preferably right after I've gotten the kids to sleep - to anchor the habit. It doesn't really matter what I write exactly, so I'm thinking I'll tell you guys stories behind a spoiler tag. It can be about anything that pops into my head, but expect a lot of gym / coaching / kids related things. I may also write other places, I'll just mention it here then. Sub goal 1; Keep up all the lifting and rebuilding cardio capacity. Approximately 4 strength sessions each week with a focus on deadlifts and all the single leg work, 5-10k rowing and any KB snatching I can manage to motivate myself for. (I'm not really properly lifting bells yet, I'd love to say it's just because I want to rebuild the strength foundation first, but it's really just because putting on different shoes and a belt seems like too much work in my current state) Sub goal 2; Over the years our house has become neater, cleaner, cosier, less cluttered- thanks to my amazing significant other this has actually been kept up over the past months. I'd like to double down on making my contributions (cooking, laundry and regular decluttering) and do something extra for the upcoming birthdays and holiday season. This includes baking all the cookies. For today's writing I'll just introduce myself.
  2. Hi! I'm KB Girl. Even though it's a lame name it's still quite accurate because i want to be the best kettlebell sport coach there ever was... and I'd like to be a somewhat decent athlete too* Currently i'm 6,5 weeks post partum, so this challenge i'll mostly be working on getting some strength and endurance back. *Because being an athlete is not fun exactly... but it's challenging and awesome and worthwhile. This video is from one of my best memories ever, my set during the european championships of 2018 (amateur category). The cheers from my teammates are amazing! And we had such a great time overall. Goal 1; move everyday Everything counts, but the following should be done at least once a week; Heavy deadlifts, kettlebell snatches, hip work, longer walk Goal 2; co-ordinate Honestly with 2 kids and one so young not much is being accomplished in our household.. but we do need food and clean clothes, and despite the gym being closed we do have work to do… and we also need to take care of each others wellbeing. For this one I’d like to sit down with Jaap for 5 minutes every evening and discuss our small, realistic goals for the next day, so we can help each other achieve them. (Work/home/selfcare) Bonus goals; Writing Finish pregnant and post partum athlete course Do artsy things in my bullet journal to wind down Re-organise my clothing and pack away pregnancy stuff
  3. Wonder Woman Teams Up Anew Diana gave the men around her a friendly smile as she entered the room. Everyone on their small team (The Justice League) were there: Bruce Wayne, the unofficial leader, also known as Batman, Clark Kent (Superman), Arthur Curry (Aquaman), Barry Alan (The Flash), and Victor Stone (Cyborg). Alfred was probably somewhere in the new headquarters’ computer room, sorting through tech., getting everything set up, making sure Bruce’s every whim is taken care of. Now that they were through the aftermath of Darkseid’s attack, they had to focus on plans to protect Earth in the future. There had been another huge battle waged in the cold north, in Sokovia, but by another group altogether, The Avengers. It was against a robot-alien-techno-thing that had gone rogue, if she understood the file that was passed on to her. Bruce has been talking of joining up with this group, to spread their resources more evenly over Earth. Seeing as Superman has been helping them incognito at times anyway, and Thor, a very distant relation of hers apparently (small world or galaxy, rather, isn’t it?), is going away indefinitely, it could work. They will háve to work together for Earth to survive, she corrected herself. The short and long of it is though, they have a whole Earth to cover, limited people with “special” powers and a lot of people who have to be trained in a very short space of time. Because the big war wás coming. Something about Infinity Stones. Diana concentrated on the rest of Bruce’s explanation. “So as it stands, I need to stay near Gotham, in reach of Alfred and Victor, who will be sprucing up our computer systems with outside help from Wakanda. Barry will stay here for further training and he has a new job to attend to during the day.” Bruce lifted an eyebrow in Barry’s direction, and was greeted with a big goofy smile. “Arthur and Clark will head up the underwater team looking for more para-demon lairs, as well as assisting with the training of the Atlanteans.” Bruce went on. That left her, she realised. She would have to go to the other team and help with training. She nodded with a small sigh. “The Avengers are hoping to train small groups of elite fighters who will help protect the world against terrorists, war criminals, bio-tech, and at times, aliens. But mostly elite human-, or enhanced human enemies to start with.” Bruce explained further. Nothing they didn’t already know. Diana and Steve will be heading up the training of these elite small groups. “Wakanda’s leader, T’Challa (Black Panther), has agreed to create a hidden training facility on his land in East Africa. The training will be overseen by Captain Steven Brandt Rogers, super soldier. The superhuman serum that enhanced Captain America's physical attributes also improved his mental faculties—such as cognition, perception, balance, aim, and reflexes—to near genius-level. He is just as lethal with his shield, as our Diana is with hers.” Bruce said with a slight smile. Bruce went on to explain in more detail to her, how similar their fighting styles were, pointed out some of the differences, and then emphasized that, as Captain Rogers came from a military background, he could also shoot extremely well. As their future missions will be focusing more on fighting terrorists, and enhanced-human enemies, Steve will be helping Diana further with her shooting skills. They will be training together, and train the newbs as well. Diana had a week in which she got everything ready, and left on one of Bruce’s private jet’s for Wakanda. She loved Africa. In fact she was there only a couple of months ago while recuperating from a vicious mental and physical attack. It is the ideal place to recharge your batteries, for there is a good reason they say the continent runs on “Africa-time”. People do not seem to hurry, and appointments are sometimes more a suggestion of time to meet, than a fact. The same could of course not be said of big cities, where everything ran around money and time. It was the exquisite rural vistas that drew her, and helped her heal. Then again, with what was waiting on them, and the background of T’Challa and his technologically super-advanced state, she doubted they ran on “Africa-time”. Wakanda itself was a smallish country, with villages, or settlements, in various nooks and crannies of the plato, which was itself on the side of a mountain. It lay on different levels each only reachable by huge swaying, roundabout rope bridges, marvels of engineering itself, other than the very small, dangerous air field of Wakanda. To the north was a huge mountain peak; the biggest desert lake in Africa was to the south, and inescapable cliffs to both the west and east. From the main lake ran three rivers, two of which surrounded Wakanda as well. It was near impenetrable, if you didn’t know your stuff. The settlements seemed to be randomly placed, but in actual fact was in strategic defensive positions with regards to the country, and the Vibranium they were protecting. The capital (Birnin Zana, also known locally as the Golden City) was on the banks of Lake Turkana, seemingly just another African city, but upon closer inspection the touch of technology could be seen everywhere. It was the most technologically advanced country in the world, despite its size. Due to it being cloaked, it can’t easily be detected. Diana gasped at the profusely growing plants everywhere. Even the farmland had to be maintained every day to stop the plants from taking back the space. As such she knew that her main diet for the next couple of months would be meat, vegetables and fruit. Very little starch (gluten specifically) based foods such as bread, rice, and pasta, and very little to no sweets, she told herself. The one “weak” point she had being chocolate, specifically Belgian, but in general any chocolate. The stash she brought along would have to last her this whole time. She was taken directly to the new training facility close to Warrior Falls, and the hive of activity continued non-stop as she was helped out of the Jeep. All around the sound of building, metal scraping, hammers hitting nails, the grunts and moans of hard labour permeated the air. “This way, please ma’am.” the soldier beckoned. “I am to take you to your room to deposit your bags, and then take you to Captain Rogers and King T’Challa” he continued nervously. He wasn’t prepared to meet such a lady. She had an air of regality about her, even though her demeanour was that of any normal person. They were told she was a female soldier, a fighter. She didn’t look like one. He lead her into a wood and grass building, seemingly no bigger than a three room house from the outside. They entered through a doorway with an invisible force field, which she of course could detect with no problem. Inside, the cool, plastered walls belied its humble outside appearance. The hum and vibrations of technology filled the air. Vibranium driven machines were running full steam, so to speak. She was lead down a long flight of spiralling stairs, along a winding passage with various doors leading off it. Beautiful tapestries depicting the everyday life of Wakandan people, were on display on the passage walls. They stopped in front of a nondescript door which the soldier opened for her. “Your quarters ma’am. This is a small lounge, with your room and private bathroom through those doors respectively. Meals are served three times a day in the dining room at the end of this passage, and you are welcome to help yourself to something in the kitchen off the dining room at other times. If you could please place your hand here,” and he motioned to a lighted rectangle next to the door. She felt a small prick on her thumb, and only just stopped herself from punching the rectangle. “Your bio-print is now registered with the system, and I’ll set it so only you have access to your quarters.” Diana looked on in amazement. She wasn’t quite comfortable knowing she was underground and surrounded by this much technology, but the room felt comfortable and airy with various lights shining out of niches in the walls. In the corner of the lounge was a small kitchenette, and she quickly peeked into her room when her bags were carried in. She will be most comfortable here. “We better not keep the gentlemen waiting any longer,” Diana said and turned to the soldier with a smile as he lead her out of her rooms. They went down one more flight of stairs, and her guide named the rooms as they passed them. The doors were not marked in any way as far as she could see. “Armoury or 'The Toy Store' as we call it” he explained with a huge grin on his boyish face. “Gun range, safety equipment, medical equipment, training rooms, exercise rooms, weights, bathrooms here and here, massage rooms, computer and tech.room for surveillance, offices for you and the Captain, and then the two boardrooms. One big, one small. The small one is where we are headed. And another large dining room at the end of the passage so you don’t have to go back upstairs for lunch.” He opened the door for her and blushed profusely as she smiled and thanked him, which stopped his nervous babble. Diana took a deep breath and turned to meet the two men in the room. She couldn’t stop the small involuntary gasp when she came face-to-face with Captain Steven Brandt Rogers. This is indeed going to be an interesting time. ----000---- Mental Health: First 15 bible study weekday mornings. Sleep: lights off by 21h45. Water/Rooibos: >= 750ml/day. Prize: For every 5 days (all three goals), I can buy an Aloe cooldrink/water at that time. Physical Health: Morning exercises (Mondays, Wednesday, Fridays - BW & other strength). (PASS: 10 days) Afternoon exercises (at least 3x/week, one long (4km) and two short (2km) walks). (PASS: 10 days) Gluten-based food OR starches, and chocolate once a week each, only. (More than that --> 10x burpees/each portion). No prize (well the prize for staying away from starches and chocolates are NO burpees! That's a win however way you see it.) FA Training: Dry fire practice mornings (Tuesdays, Thursdays). (PASS: 6 days) EDC at least 3x/week. (PASS: 10 days) Prize: AIWB holster for my belly band - no clip, slip into space but should hold form. Finances: Report to King T’Challa on March budget for training, or in Elize terminology: finish up to March finances on the spreadsheet. PS: still to add prizes, but this round I will focus more on dry fire training and edc-ing. Exercises are of course important, but they are basically continuing from last challenge with only small changes. I only have 6 weeks left till the Waterra OCR which Brandt (hubby) and I will take part in together. For those who don't know me, and haven't guessed as yet, I tend to ramble a lot about my daily life, my hubby and kids in my challenges and at times this becomes something of a "Dear Diary" monologue. I'm just mentioning that here, because I know that is not everyone's cup of tea.
  4. This challenge I will be channelling one of my favourite Disney women: Fa Mulan. While not technically a Princess, she is brave and strong and beautiful. She starts weak and works on herself to become a strong enough soldier to defend all of China. She’s pretty damn BadAss. As such I will be theming my regular goals around Mulan. Eat like a warrior (freggies, protein): In order to perform I need to maintain good eating habits. Continuing the 5-a-day freggie habit and bringing in the a-protein-with-every-meal habit. This could take many forms… meat, eggs, cheese, protein shake etc. Haven’t decided if we’re bringing back the Whole30, not likely seeing as we have a wedding to go to, my birthday, a concert which we’ll be staying with Mr’s Mum and sister… Actually thinking about it that’s going to be a ‘no’ on the Whole30, but good choices where possible. Marked x/5, x/3 daily. Training to defeat the Huns (gym): In 2.5 weeks will be my 25th birthday. I want to lift my bodyweight (70kg). I’ve been making steady increases in my weekly deadlift (46kg, 57.5kg, 65kg), and expect to continue this trend to at least 1RM my bodyweight. Only 5kgs to go, totally possible. Other than that, I will continue going to ROAR 3/week and BigLift+Boxing 1/week. Where possible I’ll tag along with Mr to any weekend sessions he goes to. Note: I will be aiming for 70kg even if my bodyweight goes down between now and then (I’ve lost 10kg since when I started at the gym in August down from 80kg, technically I should lose another 5-10 to fall in healthy for my height, but I want to start packing on some muscle, and we all know the scale lies about that). Marked running total x/4 per week. Birthday Deadlift PR is its own mark. Notes… in case I forget something (studying): As of Wednesday of zero week I will have completed the Business subject, but will have the second half of my Chinese Mandarin class to go (through to 5th June). I will continue to keep up with classes and homework too. I have two written tests upcoming and plenty more to learn, online quizzes and the such. Marking: All classes attended (3/week). Homework on 5days a week marked x/5. Side note: She's doing this with her left hand, which is hellah hard... you're almost better to just learn to write characters with your right because its so hard to follow the strokes and not get mega-smudged. Side-side note, I don't know all of these characters, but I see the depictions of woman, fire, people/person and sun. Huzzah for knowing some tiny things! Bonus goal~ Who is that girl I see? Skin-care erry day. I get topical eczema in one of my eyebrows and on one of my ears (lovely). It's not very noticeable, but goes away when I take proper care of my skin, so proper care I shall take. Daily cleanse and moisturizing cream to banish the eczema and the beginning of lines from living a quarter century. Mark daily Y/N.
  5. Kishi

    Kishi Says Clean

    It's fun to do music in my challenges again. I missed it. So, gonna keep this short and simple because I've started parts of it and I'm on a short amount of time. Yes, time. I was staring at my schedule - all the things that I wanted to do and want to do still - and it finally occurred to me: life would just be easier with more daytime in it. And the way that happens is to go to bed earlier. But it's not just about going to bed earlier. The truth is, a lot of my life is messy. I'm thinking about that a lot I guess because, well, my bro and I are looking at moving out of the parent's place. Yup, that's right. Now that Dad's back to dying as slowly as we can ask him to, it's feeling a little crowded under this roof. He, I, and a third roommate are looking at places where we might want to live where the rent doesn't suck. And I want to leave this place as well as I can. That'll be a lot easier if I clean my end of things up more. So. Clean time, clean house. Let's get to it. GOAL 1: CLEAN UP MY TIME - BED BY 11 GOAL 2: CLEAN UP MY SPACE - ONE WALL OF MY ROOM EACH WEEK GOAL 3: CLEAN UP MY GUT - ONE SERVING OF SAUERKRAUT A WEEK GOAL 4: CLEAN UP MY CATALOG - FINISH UNDERTALE TO MAKE ROOM FOR ME: ANDROMEDA Bonus-That-Isn't: 4 written pages a week. And with that, we're off to the races.
  6. "But Kishi, aren't you doing themed challenges?" Well, I'm still working through the WOT, but like I said, theming it was getting pretty thin. And since I'm still working my way through book 6, well, I didn't think it made a lot of sense to worry too much. I suspect that going forward, I'm going to have to let that sink into the background of things. Anyway. I'll have to post some Righteous Santa Justice or something once I'm at a computer that lets me do that. So. I went to give blood on Monday. Giving blood is a good thing to do - it burns calories, regulates iron, and oh yeah it saves lives maybe. It's also useful as a pseudophysical, which when I didn't have insurance was pretty great. And for the most part, the numbers came back awesome - pulse was a touch higher, but that's to be expected given that I have a sedentary job now. But that perfect blood pressure, tho. But then it got interesting when it came time to take my temperature. I clocked in low 97. Why is that interesting? Because a lowered temperature is a sign of a depressed metabolism. It wasn't something I'd ever really noticed before, but after seeing some of the discussions here on the board, I've begun watching that in myself. I was suspicious before: the fact that I couldn't stop being cold up in Boston wasn't just my delicate Southern constitution, and I've noticed that my internal temperature shifts depending on how much I've eaten. Even having taken to eating more, I've noticed that I'm hungry in the mornings, and three hours after I've woken up my hands are back to being cold again. How do you fix that? Well, barring some kind of medical intervention, your best bet or so I've heard is to eat more. A lot more. But I'm still not lean enough for it to make sense to pursue the fabled Dirty Bulk. No, no. We're not doing that. Instead, we're going to keep it clean and Low Carb, except for training days. The training, for its part, is going to have to be adjusted somewhat as well. I'm going to put this energy to work. Don't worry, though, I'm not talking about hopping on a treadmill or something like that. Everything is deliberate. And since I insist on being a socially normal person, I suppose Da Cheatz will come as they do. Goal 1: EAT ALL THE THINGS I'm not really exaggerating on this. The recommendation I got is to take maintenance and add 300 calories to it. Combined with my tendency to modulate my eating based on what I've done that day... oooooh. I'll be over 3000 calories on training days, man. Bring on the almond butter. And extra guac, and beef. No real carbs, though, not beyond some fruit periworkout and some beans at dinner. This will be tough. Low carb high calorie is expensive. In order to do that, I'm going to have to win the time to batch cook in the kitchen, when nobody else is using it. Spoilers: between my brother who is on bulk and my parents who cook at home, there is always someone using it. Haha, dammit. Okay. They don't call these Challenges for nothing. Goal 2: TRAIN HARD Well, if I'm going to take in all this energy, I might as well put it to work. I'm going to up the rep ranges some - from 5 to 8. No RPT work this time. I just want to lift heavy. Rucking will continue. Finishers, provided that the rest of the session has gone according to plan, will be reintroduced. I just got my first taste of a Versaclimber on Sunday, and... it's terrible. It's like a Stairclimber on steroids. Can't wait for next time. Beyond that, though, I think I want to build Finishers around crawls and carries as well, and I think I know how to do it. Goal 3: WRITE ON I need to find a way to keep my writing habit going. NaNoWriMo is always good for starting it, but I don't seem to stick out long past that. I end up getting distracted by side projects and such like that. But this year is different, on account of the fact that 1) I like the project I'm working on, and 2) I'm not desperate to submit things, since I have a good job now. There's no need for me to be distracted now, beyond the pull of the day to day. Goal 4: DO WORK SON I may be up for a raise at the end of the month. That's going to depend on my evaluation. That's going to depend on my work. Best get to it.
  7. The lions sing and the hills take flight. The moon by day, and the sun by night. Blind woman, deaf man, jackdaw fool. Let the Lord of Chaos rule. Aiyaa. I must hate myself. There's 47 different POV characters in this book, and the prologue is 30K words. But, lots of cool things happen here. Can't deny that. Anyway, the month's work is cut out for me. NaNoWriMo is up in about a week, and I got a GoRuck to perform. We're coming down to the wire in terms of how prepared we're going to be for that (and by we, I mean me. I'm sure @RisenPhoenix has this in hand). So, let's set the pieces on the board. One more dance along the razor's edge finished. Almost dead yesterday, maybe dead tomorrow, but alive, gloriously alive, today. Rand is an appropriate training stand-in again. He winds up wanting to build a school for men who can Channel, which is a thing not seen for thousands of years since the men who can do magic in this setting wind up going wildly, destructively mad. Still, his rationale makes sense - if the world's going to end soon, nobody's gonna live long enough for that to happen, and he might as well face it with as many allies as he can make. Fortunately, my circumstances are far less severe. But training is training, so training I shall do. We are going to tickle some Aes Sedai under the chin, rescue a mule, and put a snip-nosed girl on the Lion Throne. Oh, yes. That’s Aviendha. Don’t look at her crosswise, or she’ll try to cut your throat and probably slit her own by mistake. Two quotes for this guy? I didn't mean to, but the picture's too good and the cropped version of it is through the Wiki just doesn't play nicely with the code here. But it's appropriate anyway. Mat is the Writing Goal for this challenge. Yes. This is because he is going to tell a big story that's going to be very important toward the end of everything. And he can't stop talking. I cannot tell you the weather will be what it should tomorrow. I can tell you that Perrin and I will do what needs to be done, whatever can be done. And I don’t need to tell you that you will take what each day brings, whatever it is, and be ready to face the next. That is the kind of people the Two Rivers breeds. That is who you are. So, I've been dillydallying about with my money, which I shouldn't have been on account of the fact that this money has purpose and reason. I need to fix that. I have the tools I need to set it all up so that everything comes out automatically, without me having to even think of it. I have my savings account set, and my car payment set. But I still need to arrange my student loans, which means I have a few different difficult phone calls to make, as well as getting my credit card set up to be paid for. It feels like a difficult thing to do because it feels like what I'm doing is signing away a lot of money... but it's not that bad. And that's the point of it anyway. Student loans and credit card. Three lines I need to set up. One per week. That should do it. And while I'm at it, let's see if I can get some of the extra things coming out to not come out anymore. What is too absurd to believe is believed because it is too absurd to be a lie. Egwene Al'Vere is a young woman who once thought she would marry Rand. That didn't turn out to be true. There were much bigger things for her than that. Anyway, she's the reading goal. Which feels small - she's a real badass, actually - but then I remember what I'm reading, and suddenly I can live with it. 0 Week to warm up and we'll go from there.
  8. With his coming are the dread fires born again. The hills burn, and the land turns sere. The tides of men run out, and the hours dwindle. The wall is pierced, and the veil of parting raised. Storms rumble beyond the horizon, and the fires of heaven purge the earth. There is no salvation without destruction, no hope this side of death. It's such a happy story. Did I mention that? Just, this amazing, joyous thing. You'll want to dance after you read this. Anyway, things are not getting any easier for our heroes. Rand, having survived and been marked by his time in the Wastes returns to the west with an unstoppable army at his back. He sees his enemies, and he must stand against them. Let's get our game faces on. "Do you finally begin to trust me?" "I trust you like a brother. Until the day you betray me. You have a parole for what you have done, in return for your teaching, and a better bargain than you deserve, but the day you turn against me, I will tear it up and bury it with you." Rand is the catch-all for my training this time around. I am presently training with a mind toward building muscle, to take advantage of eating at maintenance and giving my body a break. I don't know if that'll last to the end of the challenge - if I find that I've put on too much bad weight to come with the good, I'll switch back to cutting, and my training will switch to reflect that. But as I mentioned to the Giant who has stopped in to see me, training to take advantage of the amount of food I'm eating now is a lot of fun. Beyond that, though, this challenge is going to be mostly about cementing myself around the new schedule and the commitments I have and figuring out just what I can get away with now. Holding your ground is not the same as going backwards. Everything always changes. The best plan lasts until the first arrow leaves the bow. If that sounds kind of like Napoleon or something, well, that's kind of on purpose. Mat accidentally'd his way into taking a level in badass last book. He survived something way back in book 1/2, and even though he was healed in 3, it left him with some holes in his memory that he was never okay with. He wanted those holes filled up. He was not specific with the right people as to how that would happen. Mat has a funny way of finding himself in the most chaotic places and situations. It honestly reminds me very much of my job. I want to do better at it, and I have a very concrete way of figuring out how to do that. I want to focus on working cases in the following order - priority cases, opening the new cases, developing the old cases. This is a set of numbers that's probably going to change as time goes by, because it's kind of chaotic. I will set a baseline of working the three priority cases I have now and completing opening procedures on the three cases that I will be assigned that follow, for a total of at least 6 cases per day. Beyond that, I'd like to touch on at least the five oldest cases in my queue, for a total of 11 cases per day. This may or may not be a realistic thing - it can be a lot to work on any given case, given what evidence has come in, what you have to do to reach claimants, to say nothing of the other behind-the-scenes stuff. Also, given the rather personal nature of these things, I'm afraid I'm going to have to be kind of vague in terms of talking about it. I won't be able to give you much more beyond what I've done. It's all I have to give, guys; sorry for that. If you must drown or ride a lionfish, you ride and hope for the best. Siuan Sanche is a hard woman who's made a lot of hard choices to be who she is and where she was. The former Amyrlin has been deposed, and is forced to make of her life what she can. I'm kind of torn between making a goal of not being late to anything and making a goal of getting through Deskbound. The latter wins out in the end for me because being a professional about things just seems like a very poor goal to think about. Of course I'm going to be on time for things - I have a grown-up job now. Being late is becoming foreign to me. But what is becoming familiar is a chair. That is unavoidable at this time. Maybe, eventually, I can do a standing desk, but at this stage it doesn't make much sense to ruffle feathers. So, I will make do with what I have. Get through Deskbound, run assessments, apply. "I mean to deal with the world as I find the world, for as long as I can." Why, yes, that is Moiraine again. And yes, those are portentious colors for a portrait, as if something terrible is about to happen to her. You shouldn't read anything into that. She is still seeking after stories, still writing, even as the world marches toward Tarmon Gaidon. She's a believer in a cause, marching toward something that she can barely see. Rand by this point sees her as a manipulator, someone trying to pull his strings for the White Tower, and this is true. But though she's sacrificed much, she never does so with thought to herself and what she might have wanted. She's a hard character to like, but she's just as hard to dislike when you see who she is and what she does. And why. And the things that she dares to do as a result of her sense of purpose and what she's trying to do... she's really incredible. Anyway, the reading and writing goal goes here. Time to take the week and see how it plays. Cool. Let's go.
  9. HI GUYS!! Welcome to my... what, 16th challenge here?? HOLY SNACKS. I honestly think I've lost count. Eep~ At any rate I’m clearly still on an FFXIV kick so for this challenge, welcome to the snowy city-state of Ishgard. This challenge is a little different from previous of mine in that the activity level has a bit of a different focus... I’m going to be doing a lot of tracking, logging, data-mining, and habit observing this go-around. Of course my regular fitness will still take place in the background! (And on my first quest!) Ishgard is as tactical as it is strong, so it seemed like a perfectly themed place to set up shop. So honestly the best job class to complete my quests would be Scholar, but I have leveled ZERO of Scholar so I’m going to take a smidge of liberty here and let ASTROLOGIAN head off this challenge!!! AST is based in Ishgard and there are lots of opportunities for research and higher learning in the city. I’ve named each quest after one of the Astrologian’s buff cards (similar to tarot cards), and am ready to dig into some studies... (witness; me making use of my $9.99/mo Adobe Creative Cloud suite~) The Bole - Deadlift Progression A long time ago in a land far away (like last year?) I managed to seriously twang my lower back while deadlifting. It was a combination of lack of skill, too much weight too fast, and a traditionally weak lower back that all contributed to the sadness. Since then I’ve shied away from any sort of deadlift because it really skeeved me out. (Aside: I also am of the long legged/short armed variety, which set me up for a little of a disadvantage anyway, positioning was always a little tenuous.) Slowly but surely I’ve been kind of excelling at one legged Romanian Deadlifts - I’m up to 50lbs right now with zero signs of low back strain or fatigue. I realized a week or so ago that I’m progressing really well with these because even when I started with around 25-30lbs, it would put a serious strain on my lower back. These days it’s still very taxing, but not in a painful way at all. SCORE! In the spirit of being a Very Careful Person (tm), I’ve decided to (gently) run with this knowledge and add some other drills to my workouts that will help me prepare for deadlifts in a future challenge. So, I will work on: Hip Hinges & Thrusts Romanian Deadlifts (Barbell) Dumbbell Deadlifts Rack Pulls - MAYBE - I have read serious conflicting information on the validity of these so I’m not sure if I’ll be adding them quite yet. More research! This list may change or vary as I research more over Zero Week but I aim to complete 8 sessions of this over the next 4 weeks - one heavier session at the gym and one lighter at home, since I have dumbbells - and see where it takes me. (And how much Tiger Balm I need to use.) A - 8 sessions of DL Progression completed B - 6-7 sessions of DL Progression completed C - <6 sessions of DL Progression completed The Balance - Food Tracking It’s time to start tracking my food intake again. (Insert non-enthused ‘yaaaaay’ here~) According to MFP the last time I tracked anything ended around February-ish? I’m not a person that can track my intake for 6+ months at a time, it makes me twitchy, and I get a little overwhelmed and unhappy with it and it’s just not good for my overall well being. So I track on and off in the hopes that the ‘on’ phase will help me get a good handle on the values of the things I’m eating, and help me make smart choices when I’m ‘off’. So I’ve been ‘off’ for a while and it’s definitely time to start again. No numbers to hit, no goals or macros to meet, just log everything for 4 weeks to see where I’m at, and use the data to decide where I need to improve. The caveat is that I won’t have MFP on my phone (this actually makes it less stressful for me!) and I’ll need to log my daily food from the desktop. Deal? Deal. A - 4 weeks logged B - 3-4 weeks logged C - Less than 3 weeks logged The Ewer - Limit Alcohol So I don’t drink a ton but it’s enough lately to really give me some gently unpleasant side effects such as - shittier sleep! - gently expanding waistline! - crappy skin! - feeling like a bloaty slug! - etc. I’ll maybe have 3-4 beers weekly now but I SERIOUSLY need to cut that back. I know I can, I don’t crave beer like I used to, and I’ve done this before and I can do it again. Limiting myself to 6 drinks over the course of 4 weeks. This one is sink or swim with zero middle ground. Easy, right?... A - 6 or less drinks F - More than 6 drinks The Spire - Managing Gil It’s time for me to sit down and take a long hard look at my financials and get my shit in order! I’m at a point now with my 32h/week job that I take in more than I expend, which is good. However, I really need to tighten the bootstraps and make my money work for me, instead of just -thinking- I know what’s going on. While I’m actively looking for something full-time I’ve decided that, when/if that does happen it’ll be great, but right now I need to start doing more to improve my current financial situation instead of... you know, just waiting. I’ll be utilizing You Need A Budget and MAKING EVERY DOLLAR COUNT. My biggest goal right now is to just be able to visualize how my money is working for me and get a little more aggressive with saving and paying some stuff down. (Luckily my credit card right now is 0% APR until April, which helps LOADS.) Oddly enough I’m STUPID EXCITED about this one and giving this system a go, as I’ve heard awesome things about it, and even reading it all over gets me hype. Again, I’m just tracking and gathering data for 4 weeks and using the results to see what kind of position I'm really in. A - Tracked financials for 4 weeks F - Tracked financials for <4 weeks BONUS QUEST! The Spear - Space Management GUYS I AM IN MY NEW VERY OWN COMPUTER ROOM!!! I’m so flippin’ excited, it’s so spacious and the lighting is lovely and I feel so chill and calm and happyyyyy~ Kell and I effectively each have our own “hobby rooms” now and we both are LOVING our new spaces! What this means for me is that I need to CLEAN. My room previously was storage, and still is to some extent, but now it’s up to me to go through the clutter in here and downsize/clean it up. Also get some shelves and my corkboard up on the walls, and some pictures I’ve been meaning to hang. This won’t be graded, but I’ll be posting photos and talking about it as I go, so yay! I THINK THAT'S ALL!??! I'm excited because these are all things I need to work on and will help to set a foundation (Ishgardian pun intended) for future endeavors. Let's gooooo~!!
  10. The Wheel of Time turns and Ages come and pass. What was, what will be, and what is, may yet fall under the Shadow. For centuries, gleemen have told of The Great Hunt of the Horn. Now the Horn itself is found: the Horn of Valere long thought only legend, the Horn which will raise the dead heroes of the ages. And it is stolen. And so we begin. Book II. In which a powerful relic is lost, and a powerful enemy is found. The last challenge went really well. A lot of things that I didn't expect to go right went... well, right. It's a series of facts and such that, to be honest, change a lot of things. I know now that I will be able to afford to travel and do the GoRuck in Boston. I know now that this training has a purpose, and a reason beyond fighting the entropy of long, long sits. And, as one might expect, however, there were complications attached to this - a change in the time I get up, and a change in my schedule, and a change in my training, and as such a change in my diet. In other words, I found something, only to lose a bunch of other things. Not really a big deal, because I can find those things again - I've done it before - but it sure does seem to fit the tone of the book, so here I go. Always something new, always something I didn't expect, and sometimes it isn't horrible. Poor Rand. He learned in the last book that he is a wielder of saidin, the tainted, masculine half of the One Power. He is marked as a doer of sorcerous deeds, doomed to madness and the worst death. But there is more to it than he knows, more than he can even accept... The Rand part of this challenge is to search for the new routine. Once it is found, I must do the new routine. This may sound like something that has a lot of the challenge as a whole wrapped up in it, but the truth is, it's really just about adjusting to a new schedule. Part of that means making the new schedule, and although I have it made up, it's not really complete yet. It will change again in a couple of weeks, once I begin the new job and see what there is to see. At present, mornings are devoted to meditation, prayer, postural practice and stretching, and handstands. I've altered the handstand training so that I'm not doing hollow-body work directly anymore. There's just no time if I mean to do this more days than not, and honestly, getting myself to the point where I'm standing in a perfect handstand will do all the same things anyway. So, what I'm doing at this point is dropping my time back down and bringing myself closer to the wall, to learn to control my kick-up and to get more used to the idea of full body tension as a straight line. Midday work will be about skill practice with the uchikomi, and shadowboxing. Maybe some skipping rope - wouldn't be hard to bring that along, but don't quite know where to fit it. Nighttime is Perrin's problem. I will wager two silver marks to two from each of you that I can beat both of you at once, just the way I said. You can't have fairer odds than that. There are two of you, and one of me, so two to one are fair odds. Mat, of course, has his own problems. He picked up an evil artifact in the last book, and it is slowly killing him. The good news, though, is that he will lose this dagger and regain his life. The bad news is that his troubles are only getting started. Part of his recovery is that he has to eat. He is surprised at how much he ends up having to eat, how much the Healing of his wounds costs him. Likewise, it is the same with me. I have been stuck at a plateau for the past three months in terms of shedding fat and getting lean, and this has been a function of a mismatch between my body's demands and my meeting them. Fortunately, I am back on familiar ground with me being mostly sedentary again. Unfortunately, I'm me, and I'm always keen to experiment with things. On days when I'm just doing handstands and S&S, I am dropping carbs and calories down low - 50-100g for CHO, about 1650+ total intake. I will be saving my carbs for the end of the day to help me feel full and satisfied. On days when I'm formally training, I will reverse everything - 30-50g of Fat, about 1950 calories for total intake. This is simply for now - if I get hangry, or if I feel like my energy is super-stinkin' low, I reserve the right to adjust. I also refuse to deny myself the pleasures of company - hence me being so low and hard on myself. Just in the past week, I've had three glasses of champagne, homemade BLT, and junk food. Please, please don't be afraid for me. I promise, it is unwarranted. And also I think my mother is going to sabotage me - I mentioned that I wanted to see if I could go lower safely and she said she didn't think I had much left to lose. I assured her that I'm being safe - and I am, really - but I doubt she believes me. Now I get to have that problem that all the other Nerds have when they live at home. Yaaaay. A young wolfhound must meet his first wolf someday, but if the wolf sees him as a puppy, if he acts the puppy, the wolf will surely kill him. The wolfhound must be a wolfhound in the wolf's eyes even more than in his own, if he is to survive. And what to say of Perrin? Poor man. He hears wolves in his thoughts. It wasn't his choice, but whether he likes it or not he too is being dragged along by virtue of who he is in the Pattern. But it's more than that too - he made a vicious axe, and he is strong with it, but it makes him sick inside and he knows not who he is. Perrin's challenge for me is all about iron - every day that I can, I want to be touching the iron. It can be S&S, or it can be strength training, but in either event it is possible to do something every day. It's a very simple, straightforward way of doing things... but that doesn't mean easy. I've stayed with you long enough, Rand. Why would I stop now? You see, I like you. I would like you even if you weren't ta'veren. Maybe I like you despite it. You do seem to get me neck-deep in hot water. In any case, I'm going with you. And I don't think you can really stop me. And at last we come to one of my favorite characters. Loial is an ogier, a gentle giant of the forest. He loves trees and growing things, but he also loves to read. He's traveling with everyone because he wants to see the world, although he didn't get permission to leave home before taking off on this adventure. But in addition to being a kind young man of 90 years, he's also a writer. He wants to chronicle the events as they unfold. He knows that being around people who literally warp reality as they go is bound to change things, and he wants to write that story. You can see where this is going. Read the next book, yes, but also write and work on my own thing. @erosan challenged me in @Starpuck's thread to write a more ethically nuanced take on the themes of Star Wars and like an idiot, I accepted that challenge. Unlike an idiot, I seem to have stumbled on some wonderfully gray ways to explore those ideas and to tie together a bunch of things that I never thought I could into a single project. Read and write. Read and write. ... I think that about does it for this round. As usual, it looks like much, but it is not really. Let the Dragon ride again upon the Winds of Time...
  11. Ok so managed to film my 85kg squats, 40kg overhead press and 120kg deadlift. With the deadlifts, I know I am squatting them up, however our plates do not lift the bar to the regulation 21cm's, so I kinda do a semi, deficit deadlift. I need to get to the gym and practice on a properly heighted bar.
  12. Hi, I live in Manhattan and was wondering if there are any NF'ers with a squat rack/bench at their apartment? My apartment is a bit small (it could fit but I have roommates) and there is always a long line at the gym for squat racks, so if there's anyone in the area who has one at home and wouldn't mind letting me use it a couple of times a week (could discuss payment, etc) that would be great. I understand there would be liability issues, but I'd hope we can work something out. ANd mods, if this is not a sanctioned topic please let me knwo. My intentions are simply to find a better way to lift.
  13. Deadlifts have always been my sticking point in competition. I'll go to pull the second or third lift and it'll feel tough and I'll just give up! Third attempt deadlift (135kg) - 2 December 2016 - Commonwealth Powerlifting Championships Yesterday I did my first competition for six months. My coach took charge of my attempts. I opened at 130kg (I've done it in training whilst feeling like death, so no fear on that) and then put 140kg in for my second attempt. I was terrified. It was tough. It went up but, as many of you will be aware, there are times when you go to pull a deadlift and a little bit of wee will leak out. It was just a tiny bit at 140kg but I locked out! My coach then put in my final attempt. He didn't tell me what it was. He just told me to cling on for dear life and not to stop pulling with no sense of self-preservation. Whatever happened, don't stop pulling until you succeed or the lift would fail to be legal (i.e. hitching or foot movement). So I did. I grabbed onto that bar, I pulled through my sticking point, I tried to lock it out. I tried so hard that I wet myself and the platform but I didn't let go. I didn't give up on myself! I didn't give up on myself! I may not have locked out that deadlift but I beat my deadlift demons down and I'm walking away thinking that there's a lot more there rather than hating myself for giving up when I could have got it!
  14. Legend of a Banished Man **this challenge features Rurik the wolfhunter from Urban[Wolf] by our own Wild Wolf** The forest was throbbing with the sound of animal nightlife. The noises made by bugs and the nervous wondering of rodents bared witness of the never sleeping force of wildlife. The warrior listened to this medley of sounds like it was an orchestra playing just for him. Sitting on a branch, resting his back against the trunk of the tree he began to fall asleep. He had strapped himself to the tree to avoid falling over if he tilted to one side or the other while sleeping. The last thought that crossed his mind was of gratitude for the ongoing summer that allowed him to safely sleep in the wilds. He opened his eyes. Something was off. Judging by the darkness only a few hours had passed since he fell asleep. There was still plenty of work to do for the night inhabitants of the summer forest. Yet it seemed like the forest itself was holding its breath. The warrior loosened the straps and searched his surroundings with an axe in one hand and a saex in the other. The shield was still tied to the tree… The Saex or sax is a big knife/small sword tipically used by saxon and germanic people He smelled the man in the way wolves do before hearing the steps on the soft leaves that covered the ground. He jumped to a lower branch and instantly to the floor, landing right behind the stranger. “You are too far from the main road to be just passing by†the warrior said as he pressed the seax against the man’s back â€I’m no brigand nor am I a murderer but I won’t hesitate to kill you, so don’t give me a reason†“oh, but that’s exactly why I’m here…†the warrior noticed the chainmail under the man’s cloak â€...wolf!†The man suddenly turned around hitting the warrior in the face with the back of his fist. The warrior backed off and raised his guard. The man ditched the cloak and stepped directly under the moonlight that made it’s way through the roof of leaves. The tall bearded man was wearing a mail hauberk and carried no shield, only an axe. And it was no wonder for it was the most ridiculous axe the wolfwarrior had ever seen. Ludicrously oversized and clearly to heavy to be wielded properly. One thing caught the wolf’s attention the most: the axe was double bitted. A waste of good steel. Obviously he had no idea of weapon handling or he wouldn’t be carrying that abomination. That man probably was the son of a lesser noble who fancied himself a werewolf hunter or an adventure-seeking merchant who got scammed by a weaponsmith. A hauberk “Go home lad, I take no pleasure in killing sheep†“Sheep? Sheep?! I’m Rurik, you beast! Remember my name for I’ll be the one to send you to Hell†“Alright...Rurik… tell me mate, how exactly are you planning on sending me to the cold embrace of Loki’s daughter?†the warrior found Rurik’s confidence entertaining. “With this!†The hunter cleared the 2 meters between him and the wolfwarrior in two steps and swinged his axe with lightning speed. So fast that the warrior could barely lean back to avoid being beheaded, but an inch of his beard was severed right away. Clearly that thing was sharp. Rurik kept on swinging that monstrous axe like it weighed nothing and the warrior just kept dodging and dancing to avoid the deadly double-bitted head. Suddenly his back hit a tree. There was no place to go and the axehead was traveling through the air aimed right at his forehead. As the wolfwarrior dodged the blow the axe got stuck in tree behind him.“It’s now or never†he thought and took a swing with his axe at Rurik’s head. The hunter dodged the blow but the warrior was already backswinging and the butt of the handle caught Rurik right in the jaw, knocking him to the ground. Although the wolfwarrior raised his guard again, Rurik didn’t move at all... He was unconscious. “Glass-jawed bitch†muttered the werewolf as he sheathed his axe and seax. “let's have a look at thisâ€. He ripped Rurik’s axe out of the tree trunk. It was at the least 6 times heavier than his own axe. He walked towards the fallen hunter and as he raised the weapon overhead for the finishing blow, Rurik opened his eyes and swept the werewolf’s legs in a swift motion. He felt like he was falling in slow motion “I can’t believe I fell for thatâ€. His head hit the ground and the oversized weapon flew out of his hands. Rurik was frantic: “you filthy beast, you can’t kill me! I was banished, cursed until I end every last one of your kin, and by the gods, tonight I’ll be one wolf closerâ€. And so began the axe dance once again, but this time the horn of Ruriks battleaxe drew a cut through the warrior’s tunic and into his flesh. This dance kept on going for what it seemed like an eternity and the wound was not healing. He had to turn, there wasn’t a choice. The hair began to grow all over his body, and his clothings teared as the shape of a humanoid wolf began to replace the human. “oh no, not tonight†growled Rurik as he jumped at the lycan. The hunter’s bare hands grabbed the transforming man’s throat but it was too late. The giant claw knocked him to the side and the whole beast followed along. Now the lycan had the upper hand. The blows did not manage to spread Rurik’s ribcage open due to the high quality riveted chainmail but the sound of the ribs cracking was perfectly audible. The warrior was in a frenzy. All of a sudden the attack lost some of it’s drive; stunned, the werewolf stared at his chest: all around his wound, the werewolf fur was falling off, showing bare human skin. Just Like that he turned back to human form… it wasn’t just a heavy axe after all. Rurik stood up with the torn chainmail hanging from his shoulders. He was in such a rage that with a firm pull, opened the few rings that held the mail together and grabbed his axe. The wolfwarrior was almost naked, only half his trousers and pieces of his tunic remained, let alone any weapons. He raised his fists and prepared for a final stand. The ulfhedinn intercepted the rushing hunter with a jab and a cross to the face. Rurik, with a broken nose and blood coming out of his mouth, kicked the warrior to the ground. He was just too weak from the blood loss. He landed on something hard. It was his seax! The hunter went for the killing blow but the warrior had already raised the short sword with both hands runing him through. Without a second of waste the ulfhedinn stabbed Rurik a second time causing him to drop the axe, which he grabbed and with a last effort sunk on the hunter’s back down to the handle. Despite of his injury, the wolfwarrior parched up his wound, reached for the spare clothes on his bag and left the forest behind. The sky was still dark when a banished man rose from the dead once again. “Fucking Wolf, that was my good hauberk…†Rurik muttered while sheathing the axe that not long ago was stuck on his back â€...you are gonna pay for this†In order not to die at the hands of the hunter, the Ulfhedinn must be quick and dextrous. For that reason, this challenge will focus on practicing my handstands and elbow lever as well as box jumps. As some of you perhaps remember, I've brought iron back into my life on the holiday mini, but I have not been serious about it. in this challenge I'll install a mandatory lifting day a week.I'll be adding some sidequests tomake sure I get sh*t done. GOALS Practice handstands, elbow lever and box jumps 4 times a Week(log every session on thread or it will not count for progressbar)Lift acording 5x5 plan every thursday(also log every session or it will not count for progress bar)Eat paleo with 2 weekly variances(log comosition or pic of said meal or it will not count for progress bar) SIDE QUESTS Practice 5 min a day with the didgeridoo and not more than 5 minutes.Build one or more of this home gym improvements(did I ever mention I'm DYB bitch, lol)​Medicine ball(10%)T handle(10%)Squat stands(40%)Bench(40%)​Make a daily "Stuff to Do" 4 item list, post it on my thread and do the stuffSo, every item on the "goals" list is worth 15%, 15% and 55% respectively and the "side quests" represent 5% each. According to this set up, all individual results are considered as non percetual results(a.k.a without the %) so that they yield a numbre between 0 and 100. Rewards will come depending on the final outcome. A= 100 - 90 B= 89 - 80 C= 79 - 70 below those values... I simply don't care REWARDS A- New pack of plates for the barbell B- Pull-up bar for the door C- Kindle version of "The Primal Blueprint"
  15. Back-story: I am in my masters program in college. I go to the school gym because as long as you are a full time student you get to use the gym limitlessly. So I've been lifting at this gym for months now. Working out has become my stress relief and deadlifts are my anger management. Today, IN THE MIDDLE OF MY SET,a student worker comes up and tells me some bs about the floor getting messed up and management doesn't want people to deadlift anymore. I asked if I could keep doing it if i bought my own bumper pads so the weights never touched the ground and he STILL said no. So I reracked my weights, didn't even finish the rest of my work out and just went to my car on the verge of tears. I feel like someone just told me my dog got hit by a car (not dead, just hit). What the crap am I supposed to do?!? I need my gorram lifts! It's worth mentioning that I'm happy if rent and utilities get paid every month, so I simply don't have money for an expensive gym membership. Mostly, I just needed to vent to people who would actually understand how I feel about being told that I can never deadlift at that the only gym I have access to.
  16. Hi! I'm Catherine (Cutebug) and this will be my first Challenge as a Ranger. I've been indecisive about my guild and staying as an Adventurer, but I think I have found my home. My Main Goal, as always, is to LOSE WEIGHT. Challenge #1 - Cut Out Dairy (cheese and milk) for 6 weeks. This morning, while walking to work drinking my tea, I felt the usual bit of "ickiness" from drinking milk. I don't *always* feel icky or bloated when I have dairy, in fact, it's mostly only if I have lots of cold milk, but it does occasionally happen. And I thought to myself, WHY am I making myself feel icky??? This may also result in me cutting out most, if not all, of my caffeine, as I can't drink tea without dairy milk, or else I get painful stomach feelings and slight nausea (before you go suggesting dairy alternatives, those don't work for my really strange random problem, unfortunately). I'll use coconut milk for any other "milk" requirements. Challenge #2 - Hike and/or Swim Weekly I recently fell off the hiking wagon. I'd like to pull myself back on. Also, I have challenged myself to swim across a lake at the end of summer, so I should probably do some swimming... Challenge #3 - Go to the Gym Twice Weekly I've been visiting the office gym once weekly for the past couple of months. It's been GREAT. I've finally started Deadlifts and Squats, which I couldn't do before due to lack of barbell. The gym also has a pull-up bar as part of the rack, so I'm training for that as well. I'd like to start going TWICE weekly instead of just once. This week will be my first 2x week. Personal Challenge: Make SeedBombs and Enact Guerilla Warefare on My Neighbourhood! I found this lovely sunflower flourishing in a vacant lot during a drought. The vacant lots around here are often littered with people's discarded appliances, furniture, and Tim Horton's garbage. I thought it was so amazing that this one flower randomly made its home in a place like that. So I am going to help nature reclaim the empty spaces and make the neighbourhood more beautiful. I'm also going to go forage for blackberries down the street because it seems like no one else is doing it. Mini Challenge: See that tractor tire in the first photo? I'm going to complete that movement I am starting in that photo. Right now I can only flip the tire from the inside. I'll keep trying and keep training in the gym until I can flip that sucker like they do in all the CrossFit videos and photos! Here's what I can do now
  17. Seussey

    Bye Bye Sugar

    Time to try this Six Week Challenge thing So my workouts are going awesome and in general my food is pretty good. I just have this small sugar addiction I need to kick, so here goes nothing or better put "here goes the Sugar". Main Goal: to reduce my sugar consumption to 64g a day. Sub Goals: - Get 7 hours sleep a night - Squat 75% of my body weight - Deadlift 75% of my body weight Start weight: 103.5kg Start measurements: - Belly 102cm - Waist 96cm - Bicep 33cm - Thigh 68cm RWAR!!!!
  18. Hi.... silly question..... When you're adding up the weight you're lifting (say, in a deadlift), do you count the bar? For example, does the below photo equal 20lbs, or approximately 65lbs (depending on the weight of the bar)? I'm trying to figure out how much to start with and aim for, but I need to know how to count first! I slapped a couple 25lb "thingers" on the bar last week and deadlifted that NP....
  19. Bit late starting the challenge, oh well. Main goal: Lose the belly (this is taking a backseat for a bit though) Challenge goals: (i have no idea how achievable these are, but i'm gonna give them a damn good shot) * 3 plate deadlift for 5 reps (140kg). Starting at 120kg. This works out at 3.3kg increase per week. I deadlift twice a week so if i increment by 2.5kg i can have a few small plateaus. * 1.5xBW squat for 5 reps. Starting at 1.3. I can either drop weight, increase lift or preferably both. I should be able to drop some regained weight to put me back at about 82kg, which means i need 123kg squat. Currently my 5RM is 111kg. Diet To help this i've switched up my diet a tad from previous challenges. Other than the last one where i started doing it. I'm following the eat-stop-eat pattern. I eat at or slightly above maintenance for 5 days a week and i fast for 24hrs twice a week (after dinner tues til dinner weds and after dinner fri til dinner sat). So calorie-wise i look something like: Monday: 2200-2500 Tuesday: 2200-2500 Wednesday: 800-900 Thursday: 2200-2500 Friday: 2200-2500 Saturday: 800-900 Sunday: 2200-2500 Any food goes as long as i make 120g of protein per day (100g on fast days). I need to slowly ease myself out of being obsessed by diet. This should still be a "cut" based on calories for the week. Exercise Continue current routine: Monday: Upper Tuesday: Squats and deadlifts Thursday: Upper Friday: Squats and deadlifts This setup puts squats and deadlifts at the points where i'm most fed during the week. Upper body wise i'm doing a fair bit of machine work at the moment as they aggravate my rotator cuff less. I've started re-introducing bench though. I have a physio/PT appointment at the gym on thursday so depending on what he suggests for fixing this cuff for good my upper body stuff could change, hence no upper body goal for the challenge. Not really overly bothered about weight, but if i lose some great. Start weight: 85.7kg Go!
  20. 2014 was kind of an epic year. I hate that I fell off the face of the earth, but for about 3 months there I was driving 3 hours round trip each day to the new job, which kind of sucked up any time that might have been available for reading the forums and posting. We finally got moved in August, although we’re still stuck in apartment hell while we try to find a house in our price range that’s worth the pain in the ass of buying a house. 2014 highlights! Fitness Did two beginner CrossFit competitions. Was not in last place for either. Did a Spartan Super. Did not die. Had fun. Found a new CrossFit box to train at. Being the new kid is no fun, but I’m getting to know people. PRs Front Squat - 175 Deadlift - 255 1RM, 225 3RM, 205 5RM 2k row - 9:16 Back Squat - 175 (back in February, something tells me it'd be higher now) Power Clean - 115 Life Got an awesome new job! Got to start my awesome new job about 2 weeks before Summer Reading began...eep! In two weeks, planned an entire Summer Reading program for teens, plus created a schedule for 75 teen volunteers (that one was scary) Won NaNoWriMo! 50k+ words written in November on what might someday grow up to be a novel. Binge-watched all 9 seasons of Supernatural in about 2.5 months. Not entirely sure if I should be proud or ashamed of this one. I might be a teensy bit obsessed. Thus the images/gifs in this challenge post. Started reading fanfiction. Why didn’t I do this before? Oh, yeah, because it’s an epic time-suck. Started writing fanfiction. Both awesome and horrible, because now I can’t stop. So 2014 was awesome. I’m looking forward to 2015! I have two main quests that I’m planning to alternate my focus on for each challenge. One is working on a weakness, the other is working on a strength that I want to get stronger. Quest 1: Pull-ups (starting with banded, working my way up to unassisted) Quest 2: 300+ lb. deadlift. The Challenge! Main Quest: To be able to do banded pull-ups in WODs Missions: CrossFit at least 4x per week, run on the rest days (because somehow I got talked into a half-marathon. I'm still not clear how that happened) Grading: A = 22+ CrossFit Days & 16+ Runs; B = 19-21 CrossFit Days & 14-15 Runs; C = 18 or fewer CrossFit Days & 13 or Fewer Runs If I manage more than 4 CrossFit days per week, the extra can count as a run. Strict pull-up training program 3x per week (http://www.boxlifemagazine.com/training/conquering-your-first-strict-pull-up) mmm....where was I? Oh, yeah Grading: A = 16+ days of pullup work; B = 14-15 days of pullup work; C = 13 or fewer days of pullup work Hit ETP macros daily Grading: A = 37+ days of good macros; B = 33-36 days; C = 32 or fewer days. Fitness Side Quest: Mobility work every day. A minute on each side in pigeon pose is the bare minimum. Grading: A = 37+ days of mobility; B = 33-36 days; C = 32 or fewer days. Life Side Quest: Write at least 500 words/day. Fanfiction, starting another novel, whatever. Grading: A = 37+ days of writing; B = 33-36 days; C = 32 or fewer days. If I get As on both of my side quests, I can buy a snarky workout shirt from my list. I'm not going to have the kind of time I used to have to comment on other people's threads. I'll try my best, but part of the reason I fell off the forums was because my perfectionist self shut down when I didn't have time to comment on EVERYTHING. Baby steps. I missed you guys!!!
  21. The sun burned orange through her eyelids. Devyn groaned and rolled over, burying her face in the warm sand. Sand? She pushed herself up, though she was blistered and sore. The bright light shone upon the white sand, blinding her for a moment. All she could see through her tears was an ocean of white contrasting with an ocean of blue. Ocean? She rubbed her eyes and tried to slowly get used to her blinding world. The sun was hot and she felt as if she had been the subject of its fury for a while. A bird screeched through the jungle. Jungle? A sudden and worrisome thought stabbed at her brain, more painful than the light in her eyes. She forced her lids open and saw that she was on a beach. Behind her was jungle. All around her was sand, ocean and trees. There was no sign of civilization anywhere. She walked around for a bit, difficult because the sand was so deep and she was so small. She trudged toward the trees and shouted. “Hullo?†A loud bird answered. She walked around some more, calling out her name, introducing herself to anyone who might be around. But it was only the animals and the sound of the waves that greeted her in return. An island. She was deserted on an island. That Blerch. That sunnabitch! That’s right. I’ve got to survive on a deserted island! How do I do this? By adopting a primal lifestyle of course! It’s the only way. Until I find a way off, it’s the only way. How do I do this? 1. Primal diet - I’ve got no choice. They don’t have a supermarket on the island. I have to eat off the land. Hunting, fishing and gathering. There’s no other way. I must follow a strict primal lifestyle. 2. Distance - There of course will be a lot of walking. Not only do I have to hunt, gather and fish, but I’ve got to find a way off this island! I’m also a kender, so staying put is not an option for me. The total circumference of this island is 150 miles. I must reach this distance through running, walking, swimming, rowing (or biking, shhhhh). This means I have to do one of these every single day. 3. Jumping - Because. Surely there’s got to be a lot of jumping involved. I’m not sure why yet, but I’m sure it will come up during my stay here. My jumping, because of all my problems in previous battles, has become a bit rusty. I can jump 12†but I need to level up. I will work on squats, box jumps, broad jumps and other lower body exercises to level up to an 18†jump. 4. Pull ups - Climbing trees, climbing rocks, running from large predators and accidentally running too far and falling off a cliff but saving myself by grabbing onto a lucky random branch hanging out off the side of the cliff. All of those things take upper body strength. And I have to do it to survive on this island. Or else large predator will eat me or I will not be able to hold onto the branch. I need to strengthen my upper body. To do this, I will do pushups, dips, weight lifting and assisted pull ups. My goal is to go from 75lbs to 35lbs on the assisted pull up machine. If I don’t do these things, I will not survive. But wait! There’s more! Luckily, I was stranded with my backpack. These are the only things that will keep my entertained. In it are books, pens and papers. I can read and write (OOC: because I’m a student of literature and creative writing) to keep myself entertained. I will be keeping a journal (either here or in the battle logs section) because that’s what stranded people do. On top of that, I have to build and maintain a shelter. This means daily work is involved. I need to keep my environment optimal for survival. And I must remember to play. Play to keep sane. So what’s the typical day in the life of a kender stranded on an island? From sun up to sun down, I will do my best to live the primal lifestyle. I have been doing it in bits and pieces in the past, but this is where I bring some of the most important elements together. I’ll wake up with the sun (my natural sunlight alarm clock) and hunt for some breakfast. I may or may not find any. Then I’ll probably do some reading or writing. Then I’ll have to take down my shelter. When I finish, I’ll walk around, trying to discover a way off the island. this might involve some adventuring which will lead to using my jumping and pull up skills. During this time, I’ll try to find some food. At the end of the day, I’ll rebuild my shelter, cook some dinner and then read or write until the sun goes down. Then I get a good night’s sleep until I do it again. Sure, that might sound dull, but I think it sounds kinda peaceful. And when a kender is involved, who knows what the next day might bring. tl;dr Got stuck on a desert island, now I have to eat good food and exercise to survive.
  22. Longtime NF reader, first time poster here. Please forgive the long-windedness. I'm currently in my first semester of Primary Care Paramedic training in Toronto, and our lift requirements have got me concerned. We're currently into our second week, but lift tests are coming up fast (week 5), and I'm only just finding out that I haven't got the strength. 3 weeks from Friday, we're supposed to do 5 different lifts with a 170-lb "patient" (weighted mannequin), and proper form requires that we squat deep (in one case, on stairs), lift, and hold a weight for an extended period of time. I'll attach a few links to example videos of these particular lifts, and I'll note where my college's form differs. It's important to note that these are all 2-person lifts., with the exception of the ambulance loading, which is essentially the same as the stretcher lift, just with one end in an ambulance. Stair Chair - (For us, we need to go up/down 2 flights of stairs, with a landing in between, twice – once at the head and once at the bottom. The bottom guy in the video carries with his arms extended, but we need to squat down low and grab the bar with arms curled to our chest and hands together, to lift from there. We need to do this squat both going up and going down, but being a bigger guy, my squats never seem to be low enough to lift without my back, even at 120 lbs – which is an insta-fail on our test.) Backboard/Stretcher Lift - (This is basically the same for us. Given that it's 2 different lifts, I've counted it as 2) Fore and Aft - (also basically the same So far my progress on all of these has been stuck at the 120 lb patient (even the 2-person lifts), and I just can't seem to lift any heavier. I'm obviously stepping my fitness regimen (until now, I've mostly been running, with occasional bodyweight training – sloppy I know, but I've been working on getting back on the wagon). Since forever, I've been trying to lose weight, and I'm not sure how to quickly put on the strength I need. I'm thinking lots of squats, deadlifts and curls at high weight (max 10 reps), but that's what I'm here to ask you. Can this 50-lb strength upgrade be done in 3 weeks?
  23. I’ve got 9 weeks until the Super Spartan I signed up for. I am also moving to another country 3 days after that. So my main quest this challenge is going to be further preparing for the Super and I’ll have a little side quest of getting things done to prepare for my big move. It’s going to be crazy, I am going to be busy, time is going to fly by! Last challenge I had a rough go after the halfway point, it looked like this: Week 1: 87% Week 2: 87% Week 3: 80% Week 4: 40% Week 5: 53% Week 6: 67% So this challenge I am going to add an extra rule in order to hopefully motivate me to keep at it throughout weeks 4-6. I am going to have to a minimum of 80% each week in order to pass that week. If I don’t get 80% I fail and get nothing for that week. I think it will work because I love seeing my stat points increase. I also need to post notes everywhere to remind myself that if I don’t put in all the effort I won’t get the points. SO my goals this challenge…. 1. Workout 3x per week. (STR: 2 DEX:1) I am changing up my workouts a little this go round. I love Love LOVE lifting heavy things but I need more practice lifting and moving my own body around. Once I relocate I am 95% sure I won’t have access to (and won’t be able to afford) a gym and weights so I will have to get a bodyweight routine under way. Instead of only barbell training I am adding my pull ups back in as well as some serious burpee work! Oh and hand stand practice too!!! I will have to separate my workouts in to barbells and bodyweights because I don’t have time in the mornings for bodyweight stuff. AM – Squats & Deadlifts PM – Pull ups, Burpees, & Hand stands 2. Run 2x per week. (STA:2) I don’t overly enjoy lots of running but I still need to keep doing it in order to be able to run the Super. I’m dropping down to 2 runs per week and I am pretty sure all the burpees from goal 1 will add some extra conditioning too. I will be doing 1 hill sprint type run and 1 long trail run each week. 3. 6 cups VEGETABLES every day. (CON:2 CHA:2) I had a food goal last challenge and I sucked at it….mostly because it was too vague and I allowed myself to throw in too many ifs, ands, and buts. This time I am really simplifying it. I am not sure if 6 cups will be way too much so I may tweak this goal after a few weeks. The plan with this goal is to eat all the veggies first so that I will be satisfied enough not to want any other snacky crap later on. 4. Post in my NF Academy battle log 4x per week. (CHA:1 WIS:1) I love the NF Academy women and have been slacking on my interactions with that forum. I want to keep this a big part of my life because it is a huge motivation for me to keep conquering my goals. When I am actively participating in the forums I am very successful with my goals so this should be a win/win. And then to prepare for my big move…..(WIS:2) - Change all addresses so my mail doesn’t get lost - Sell my futon - Sell my truck...stupid truck sell!!! - Move my horse and my dog :’( - Get extra insurance - Pack/purge more crap This is all stuff that needs to get done and in order to motivate me to get it done sooner rather than later (when I will be panicking) I am going to give 1 point for every 3 things I get done. Mini Challenge: I am going to participate as much as possible as long as it isn’t interfering with my other goals. So here we go again! LETS DO THIS!!!! **Any suggestions, critiquing, and comments are appreciated**
  24. What, exactly? Pawning the Regimental silver? Absconding with the NAAFI funds? Dancing the Darjeeling One-Step with Minnie Bannister? No, I say! And no again! Such antics are in my past! I’m a reformed man, dedicated to a life of brutal honesty and physical creakiness! *sound of a wine cork being slowly extracted* See, that was my 750 ml deadlift! OK, I’ll stop now. (Kingclumsy’s the only guy who gets the references anyway. J) The creakiness part is true enough. I’ve spent the last two challenges over with the Druids, sorting out my physical limitations and getting guidance on how to overcome, or at least accommodate, my various issues. I’m seeing a physiotherapist for my bum shoulder, getting an ergonomic assessment for my tennis elbow, and focusing on my posterior muscle chain to strengthen my knee. I’ve realized that I have been making a fatal mistake for the last several months. I’d been doing IF since September, and I’d dropped about 10 pounds. Then I stalled out between 223 and 227 pounds. I cut way back on desserts and white flour, worked out regularly, and nothing changed. So I started tracking my macros and total consumption on myfitnesspal, and had a Homer moment. I hadn’t been eating enough. I’d been eating this low-carb lunch, maybe 4-500 calories, no snacks, then trying to get in all my nutrition in a one-hour binge at dinner. I’d been eating under maintenance level, so my body was hibernating in spite of everything. I’ve also been shorting myself on sleep, worrying too much about things I can’t control, and not taking time for myself and my family. All this leads to my challenge for the next six weeks: Food : consume 2000 calories of high-quality goodness each day, 40% protein, 50% fats, 10% carbs. Track intake daily on MyFitnessPal. (+3 WIS, +3 CON) Exercise: Hit the gym at least 4 times per week, circumstances and insomniac children permitting. Emphasis on core workouts, cable pulls, seated and dumbbell rows, rack pulls, one-legged hip thrusters, HIIT cardio. If I can’t get to the gym, then I do yoga. (+3 STR, +1 DEX) Rehab: Do what the physiotherapist says. Do all the exercises and the stretches, do NOT do what she says to avoid. Schedule appointments and keep them. (+2 DEX, +1 WIS) Life: Try to be in bed by 11 each evening. The dishes can wait, Facebook can wait. Spend time with my wife after the kids go to bed, spend time with my kids on the weekends. We may try building a cigar box guitar. (+2 CHA) Onward and upward!
  25. Good morning and Happy New Year, First, the woot: I can now deadlift 45 pounds, which is half my body weight. I did 8 reps with the 45# BB the other day; I probably could have done more but felt like I was about to drop the bar and did not really want to risk dropping it on my feet. Second, the Thank You: I wrote out my list of resolutions this morning, complete with specific goals and a grading system. I learned that here, and I thank Steve and Staci and all of you for that. May the Force be with us all.
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