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"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.