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  1. Welcome all! I’m a married parent of 4 kids aged 0-8. I’m ultimately an adventurer at heart, though I train similar to a lot of Rangers (and I’m something of a Druid Paladin which is also something of an equivalent to a Ranger). I love hiking, exploring, traveling, and other fun things with the family. Since shortly before joining Nerdfitness, my physical training is typically built around injury rehabilitation (which happens a bit more often due to autoimmune arthritis) and training to be able to travel, explore, and play with my family. I have a pretty effective Disney World training system, and try to ensure that at any point I’m strong enough to carry my whole family somewhere. That has become more difficult as the years go on but I can still do it for the most part. I am also an enthusiastic suburban homesteader bent on establishing an orchard and vegetable garden, so things can get pretty out-doorsy depending on my goals. My needs mean I do a variety of types of training, and my earliest two physical training goals were “run fast” and “be able to competitively play any sport I come across.” I prefer to avoid gyms and do a lot of body weight training. At the beginning of the year, we welcomed baby 4 into the family, my cat was diagnosed with feline dementia a few months ago, we adopted a kitten (our third cat and Rex’s first), and I’ve returned to work from my parental leave. At the beginning of this year, we started shopping for an existing business with a professional kitchen to give a physical location to our small cottage bakery. I’m not at liberty to discuss more at this time, only to say it’s a thing that we are working hard on. The fruit trees and bushes are all doing well. Deer chomped my kumquat tree, my serranos, and my Carolina Reapers (just the tops and clearly with regret) but they’re recovering and I’m still crossing my fingers that we’ll get some fruit from them. The Ranier is dead, but a replacement will be here in August or September. The berries are exploding again, now that the sun is in full force and we’re home to water them regularly too.. The fence is DONE (functionally, though I still have work to actually do when it’s not a trillion degrees outside). Healthwise, we’ve been living the keto lifestyle for a little over 5 months, and we’ve found it to be incredibly easy to stick to 99% of the time, meaning we’re seeing more success and I’m burning less willpower on food-related stuff. I am past my arbitrary goal weight, and I’m focusing hard now on maintaining around this weight while achieving my goal composition. The last time I was this weight was before I met Jessie and when I was in my student teaching (yeah, before the wrestling coach gig!) That is, one of the best shapes of my life. I want to be lean and strong, not skinny and weak. (Tried that and hated it). I have been focusing hard on my calisthenics since shortly after the start of the last challenge and when testing today, I hit a new pull up record of 10 last challenge. I can do 7 solid pull ups with le bebe in a harness and that’s basically my starting weight at the moment, though he’s getting bigger faster than I’m losing weight; in fact, I’ve hopefully reached my minimum and I’ve shifted to building muscle for a while. My plan is to work on bulking up for a while and after I add a good chunk of muscle I’ll return to cutting my body fat. It’s within the healthy range and bordering on the fitness range. This may mean I have to add gym time with heavy weights or make more or my own weights since I think that’s what will put muscle on the best. Goals: 1. Sleep. As best as possible. I’m a nonfunctional mess without sleep and can sacrifice it for a few days ok but then I have to make it a super high priority to regain it. With le bébé getting older this is easier but teething means there are still rough nights. 2. My basic calisthenics routine with Woody and Rex and Bo Peep. I’ve been hitting the upper body he’s but I need to get back into my lower body and core. Currently I’m at 10 pull ups and ?? push ups. I need to do a max push up test here. I’ve been doing the 25-push ups a day challenge in July so I hope that’s translated to progress. Woody was doing those with me but had a rough scooter accident where he sprained a wrist and that threw it off. Woody, Rex, and Bo Peep started dance last night and start swimming Saturday so we’ll be at the YMCA twice a week. I’m still doing the calisthenics but since we booked a Disney trip in December and are traveling on a vacation with my family in a few weeks, I’m back into DW Prep mode. I’ll be doing all the usual loaded carry exercises plus step ups, courtesy of my friends who answered my panicked call when I realized I no longer have a 15-story building’s worth of stairs to climb. 3. Take one concrete step forward per day- at least one tangible, visible thing to make life better. This ranges from things as small as “dig out the replacement toaster” to as big as “reorganize the playroom.” I don’t have to complete the bigger ones as long as I make progress. 4. Take one concrete step forward per day career-wise. I need my job but I’m not satisfied in it and otherwise need a change. I need to hone/adapt skills and look for other opportunities. -> Currently, this involves working towards dramatically expanding a part-time business into a full-time business, which would have Jessie running that business full-time and likely have me also working it full time within the next few years. I’ve also continued to interview elsewhere to help give us options. I really want the business to work though. 5. It’s watering time. It’s hot and dry now. We scrapped the one planned bed and I moved the blackberries. We’re going to nicely finish what we have before we add more. 6. Therapy. I have a new diagnoses and new medication that have been, it feels, pretty life changing. I finished intensive therapy that was also insanely helpful prior to that and I am continuing with less frequent sessions. My goal is to better learn how to manage ADHD and how to be a more connected, present, and supportive husband and father. I think I have been progressing well. I feel healthy. I am excited about how this has gone. There’s a lot going on. I’ve started a lot more regular D&D sessions with the kids. We’re a good chunk of the way into the Lost Mine of Phandelver. I’m seriously considering a TikTok channel detailing their exploits because they’re a lot of fun- a regular human fighter (who will likely become a Paladin) played by Woody,, a Dragonborn Barbarian who will 100% be multiclassing Druid played by Rex, and a higher level Tibbit multiclassing Druid and Rogue played by Bo Peep, who is a volatile sometime-companion and sometime-ally who can also wild shape into a dog. They love it and so do I. I told them we’d start a TikTok channel to tell their story, and if I manage to get that off the ground I’ll let y’all know- I did post one intro video but haven’t posted about the actual sessions.
  2. Welcome all! I’m a married parent of 4 kids aged 0-7. I’m ultimately an adventurer at heart, though I train similar to a lot of Rangers (and I’m something of a Druid Paladin which is also something of an equivalent to a Ranger). I love hiking, exploring, traveling, and other fun things with the family. Since shortly before joining Nerdfitness, my physical training is typically built around injury rehabilitation (which happens a bit more often due to autoimmune arthritis) and training to be able to travel, explore, and play with my family. I have a pretty effective Disney World training system, and try to ensure that at any point I’m strong enough to carry my whole family somewhere. That has become more difficult as the years go on but I can still do it for the most part. I am also an enthusiastic suburban homesteader bent on establishing an orchard and vegetable garden, so things can get pretty out-doorsy depending on my goals. My needs mean I do a variety of types of training, and my earliest two physical training goals were “run fast” and “be able to competitively play any sport I come across.” I prefer to avoid gyms and do a lot of body weight training. At the beginning of the year, we welcomed baby 4 into the family, my cat was diagnosed with feline dementia a few months ago, we adopted a kitten (our third cat and Rex’s first), and I’ve returned to work from my parental leave. At the beginning of this year, we started shopping for an existing business with a professional kitchen to give a physical location to our small cottage bakery. I’m not at liberty to discuss more at this time, only to say it’s a thing that we are working hard on. We have several new fruit trees, including a kumquat tree, and they’re all still alive. My Ranier cherry tree is alive but hasn’t woken up and I’m not entirely sure what to do about it. I have to replant an apple tree that sunk as well. The berries are exploding. The fence had an incorrect section sent (another return and replacement!) and this last piece should ship soon, meaning that I’ll finally be able to finish the darned fence. Fingers crossed. I hope. This never should have taken more than a day or two but here we are lol. Speaking of dragging projects, our bathroom remodel snowballed. It’s almost a ground-up remodel of the small bathroom now. But it’s gonna look good. Healthwise, we’ve been living the keto lifestyle for a little over 3 1/2 months, and we’ve found it to be incredibly easy to stick to 99% of the time, meaning we’re seeing more success and I’m burning less willpower on food-related stuff. I am past my arbitrary goal weight, and I’m focusing hard now on maintaining around this weight while achieving my goal composition. The last time I was this weight was before I met Jessie and when I was in my student teaching (yeah, before the wrestling coach gig!) That is, one of the best shapes of my life. I want to be lean and strong, not skinny and weak. (Tried that and hated it). I have been focusing hard on my calisthenics since shortly after the start of the last challenge and when testing today, I hit a new pull up record of 8. It’s probably not an actual strength record since I could previously do 6 but at 25 lbs heavier, but I’m on the way. I can do 5 solid with le bebe in a harness and that’s closer, so I’m expecting to hit an actual strength record soon. Goals: 1. Sleep. As best as possible. I’m a nonfunctional mess without sleep and can sacrifice it for a few days ok but then I have to make it a super high priority to regain it. With le bébé getting older this is easier but with teething on the horizon that adds a potential complication. 2. My basic calisthenics routine with Woody and Rex and Bo Peep. I’ve been hitting the upper body he’s but I need to get back into my lower body and core. Currently I’m at 8 pull ups and 35 push ups. I recently read a study of endurance athletes that suggests full keto adaptation occurs at about 6 months and the performance dip corrects. I’m still doing the calisthenics but since we booked a Disney trip in December and are traveling on a vacation with my family in a few weeks, I’m back into DW Prep mode. I’ll be doing all the usual loaded carry exercises plus step ups, courtesy of my friends who answered my panicked call when I realized I no longer have a 15-story building’s worth of stairs to climb. 3. Take one concrete step forward per day- at least one tangible, visible thing to make life better. This ranges from things as small as “dig out the replacement toaster” to as big as “reorganize the playroom.” I don’t have to complete the bigger ones as long as I make progress. 4. Take one concrete step forward per day career-wise. I need my job but I’m not satisfied in it and otherwise need a change. I need to hone/adapt skills and look for other opportunities. -> Currently, this involves working towards dramatically expanding a part-time business into a full-time business, which would have Jessie running that business full-time and likely have me also working it full time within the next few years. I’ve also continued to interview elsewhere to help give us options. 5. It’s watering time. All but my peppers are planted or died sad deaths on the patio, but we have 1 solid bed. The second needs to be installed, I have a pile of clay dirt to deal with, a ton of weeding to do, and I gotta keep everything alive since the heats of heck have arrived. 6. Therapy. I have a new diagnoses and new medication that have been, it feels, pretty life changing. I finished intensive therapy that was also insanely helpful prior to that and I am continuing with less frequent sessions. My goal is to better learn how to manage ADHD and how to be a more connected, present, and supportive husband and father. I think I have been progressing well. I feel healthy, though I’ve been pretty amped up the last few days during the remodel chaos and whatnot. There’s a lot going on. I’ve started a lot more regular D&D sessions with the kids. We had a few false starts and some practice sessions but they’re finally getting into the Lost Mine of Phandelver. I’m seriously considering a TikTok channel detailing their exploits because they’re a lot of fun- a regular human fighter (who will likely become a Paladin) played by Woody,, a Dragonborn Barbarian who will 100% be multiclassing Druid played by Rex, and a higher level Tibbit multiclassing Druid and Rogue played by Bo Peep, who is a volatile sometime-companion and sometime-ally who can also wild shape into a dog. They love it and so do I. I told them we’d start a TikTok channel to tell their story, and if I manage to get that off the ground I’ll let y’all know.
  3. Trying something new! Hope y’all like it!
  4. Barking up a different tree... I'm taking a leaf from how I'm feeding our dogs and cat (balanced raw), because macro-counting and I don't mesh. My main aim for this challenge is to check how much I eat. Too much, too little, just right? I think I'm getting the balance of macros mostly right, most of the time. I want to eat what I feel like, without guilt of following some or other 'diet' with no subconscious guilt talks about why I should swap my batter-covered fish for plain fish... I still like a bit higher protein and fat to carbs though. But back to the dogs... When you work out how much to feed dogs and cats, you go on a formula of 3-3.5% for working dogs (1-2hrs serious work+30min. play per day). [2.7kg food - way too much for me] 2.5% for some exercise (30min.-1hr per day) [2.25kg food - still too much], and 2% for a sedentary lifestyle (<30min. exercise per day) [1.8kg food - little bit too much for me still], 1.5% for this human's experiment [1.35kg food - just right?] Dogs/cats are NOT fed this low, ever! I added this for myself as I found 2% a tad too much still. Now I'm not a dog, I'm built differently, my body works differently, and the amount of exercise I do with my not so compact and sleek body, is very little compared to what they pull off with their bodies. Think of a sausage dog jumping onto a bed 3x his height! No way can I jump 3x my height/length. I just like the uncomplicated way of measuring balanced food eaten. So I'm starting off on LESS THAN SEDENTARY amounts. Thus aiming for: 90kg body weight at 1.5% I should be eating less than 1.35kg of food per day. This does not include water, black coffee or tea. I'm literally plopping my plate of food on the scale, weigh it, and let my little spreadsheet do the calculations for me. Thus far I had one day with 1.41kg of food (I felt it was a bit too much) and another day with 1.18kg of food (weight of plate not included ). In the meantime I'm trying to make peace with the fact that I'm a woman with some big muscles, and a good, strong and able body. This is not a scientifically formulated experiment. Do not try this at home! Now on to the other topics of the day... Those who checked in last time, may remember that we've started our boys on an exercise routine 3 mornings a week (Mon/Wed/Fri). Between hubby and myself we try to help them w.r.t. form and encouragement, while doing our own routines. Youngest (Rocco) has taken to it like a dog to a bone, while Oldest (Adam) wasn't as enthusiastic at first. But it seems both are now keen enough, and both are excited about our upcoming hike (10-12Nov It will be their first, and our first as a family - if the weather permits) and some future Waterra obs.course races (family fun, not big league). Anyway, on to this challenge's goals for myself: Bible study (5x/week); Exercise (BW - Mon and Thurs)(Walking Tue, Wed, Fri afternoons); Dry fire practice (Wed); Food (as explained above)(7x/week); Water (1-2bottles of 750ml every day, min.); Sleep (<21h30 every night). See, nothing new. I'm just struggling to get my exercise in on a Monday morning if I do bible study first, because I tend to leave my own routine to help the boys, and obviously don't get my exercise in then. And space is a problem if we all train at the same time. If I can fit in a big chunk of my routine before Rocco gets up (5h30), it should work. The boys need to exercise before they are allowed on the computers that day. Exercises: BW - Mondays and Thursdays Joint Circles (warm up) Jumping Jacks (Star Jumps) 20x Push ups (try for full - improving every week) 4x5 Abs Roll Out 3x10 (left, straight, right) Goblet Squats 2x10@10kg X Lunges 2x10 Inclined Pull Ups 2x10 Sit-Twist Stretch Shoulder and Chest Stretches Touch Toes Stretches (Yeah! I can touch my toes again!) Walking - Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Fridays Tuesdays: walk during lunch time (12h00-14h00) with hubby in the plantations behind his office block. It's normally around 5km serious hill work. Wednesdays: walk during boys' Lego course (13h00-14h00) on flat farm road, mainly in the sun. Work on speed, maybe a slow jog *gasp*. Fridays: walk with boys and dogs (new) (14h00+) in the field close to our house. Not sure of distance as I've never walked here before. Hubby and the boys have and they tell me there are sometimes farm goats and some cattle grazing there, which we have to be careful of, but otherwise it should be safe enough. The rest of my days are still the same: home school - mornings, finances - afternoon or evening, household chores - during the day, boys' extra murals - afternoons... I've had my say... Your turn!
  5. I made a status yesterday that I was going to try starting morning yoga with my almost 3 year old and her 3 year old friend that I've started babysitting 3 days a week. Today marked the first day my daughter has even seen yoga. (She's mimicked my squats and lunges around the house and even has her own toy kettlebell, but this is new territory for us!) So, I Googled. I YouTubed. I came across the video below and figured it was worth a shot! Bright colors, friendly presenter, easy poses... Yep. I did the whole 20 minute video myself. I pretended to be a lion that couldn't roar, stand tall like a giraffe and bend back like a camel. And the kids moaned for fruit snacks and 'Pocoyo' and I had to suck up all of that sadness that this would be a great way for all of us to do something together. I'M A PROUD LION, DAMN IT. Everyone starts somewhere. I guess I start with kids yoga. Let's see if it gets any better tomorrow.
  6. Hi. I'm new here. I stumbled across this site a few days ago when I was looking up intermittent fasting, which I find fascinating. I love the concept, the attitude, and the community, so here I am. I'd say I'm nerd-ish, but that's mostly because I don't spend as much time being nerdy with my fellow nerds as I'd like. Two kids, one gall bladder, and 3 1/2 years ago, I was pretty healthy--fit, a healthy weight, eating well, reasonably happy. I've struggled with all these things all my life, and I thought I had them all figured out. Not so much. The pregnancy hormones telling me to EAT ALL THE THINGS ALL THE TIME!!! kicked me back into unhealthy eating habits, and I was so exhausted (it's hard work growing a human being) that I slid back into slug mode. Add the two little sleep-terrorists (I cannot remember the last time I slept 6 hours straight, much less 7 or 8), and you have the perfect recipe for now-me--BMI 32+ (!), binge eating crap, legs achy after just a 20 minute walk. WTF? That's just not working for me. I gave a lot of thought to what motivates me. Without a doubt it's my kids. They're aged 8 months and 30 months, and they're delightful, if I may say so myself. Yes, I want to be healthy again for myself, but what really gets me off my butt is wanting to be healthy and happy to be a good example for them, to have the energy to play with them, and to be around for them for a long time. I didn't have any of that from my parents. Sooooo...... My main goal is to get back to a normal-range BMI by the end of the year--that's 136 lbs for 24.9, a 42 lb loss--via cleaning up my diet and moderate exercise. I'd like to get back to my "fighting weight" of 120, but I plan to re-evaluate my goals as I become more fit. I started a sort of fitness diary, and here are my goal, current lifestyle mods, and progress-monitoring plan: Goal: To have a BMI of 24.9 or less (136 lbs or less) by December 31, 2015 To do this, I will 1. Eat no more than 24 g of added sugar (none from HFCS) daily, 2. Eat only between the hours of 8 a.m. and 8 p.m., and 3. Spend at least 60 minutes being active every day. This can be formal exercise, walking, yard work, house work, or active play with the kids. To log my progress, I will take monthly photos, frontal and side views, both clothed and in underwear, and I will weigh in monthly. So far, so good. I started this quest on May 22, and I've taken my photos and stepped on the scale. I've done great with my eating, haven't had a mis-step there yet, but the Beginner Bodyweight Workout kicked my ass. Well, my quads. I did two sets, which was a set too many, and caused myself days of pain--not achiness but actual NSAID/analgesic-required-to-sleep pain. Stupid lunges! Today I'm feeling much better, capable of moving again, and I shall!
  7. Hello lifters! I hope I'm putting this topic in the right place (sorry if it's not, but I couldn't find anywhere that looked like a better spot). I have a rather silly question for people who lift kettlebells. For the next challenge, one of the things I plan on doing is a kettlebell exercise video. I'm all set with the stuff for me to do it, but my son had started really enjoying exercising with me. He's 3 1/2. He will not stand for not having his own "kettlebell" when I'm doing the video. Can anyone recommend a good stand-in? Something easy to fabricate/buy that will be sturdy enough for a little kid to use, but also won't damage things (too much) when he gets bored of following the video and just starts swinging it around? I have considered just giving him the tea kettle to use (or getting a toy tea kettle, cutting off the spout, and painting it), but I would love to hear other thoughts. Thank you for your help with my silly question!
  8. Battle Log. Here it is! I started this in 2012, inspired by Nerd Fitness. This is what I do instead of challenges now, as it's more long-term. i was doing both, but it was too much paperwork. I'll explain as I earn points in each of the nine areas.
  9. Probably the nerdiest thing about me is that I LOVE to watch anime. Probably the thing that I DO most often is MOM stuff. (in fact I am giving my daughter a bath right now!!.. well she is playing with toys in the bath.. I am sitting on the toilet next to her typing.) I'd like to find other people who are dealing with marriage, kids, keeping up with nerdy past-times AND trying to get healthy (in whatever way you choose). Because if we are honest with ourselves our first priority is NOT fitness (what?!!). It is probably our families, but we can STILL do it!! It is difficult, but not impossible. There are days where you meet all of your goals, YES!!! There are days where you barely make it out covered in finger paint and poop, Noooo! So we... We who battle everyday to keep fitness in the mix. We who finally get the kids to bed and instead of collapsing on the couch choose to do push-ups or a work-out DVD... We can do it!! Who is with me?? If you are participating in the 6 week challenge please let me know!
  10. Hellooooooo.... Well, for those of you that perchance glanced at my last challenge they will notice that I went from Shanghai > London > Canada. So now I'm in Canada and by the end of this challenge I will go back to Shanghai (yay summer holidays!!!). My last challenge focused on being centered, happy and as non-stressed out and healthy as possible during those weeks. It went fairly well for the first part of it, but by the time I got back to Canada I had an epic, epic burnout and spent about a week being a piece of exhausted flesh. That part is mostly OK now, but what I would like to gear up for is going back to Shanghai. And the thought of that makes me want to grab the kid and hide in the woods. 1. I don't want to go back to Shanghai. 2. I don't want to go back to Shanghai. 3. Seriously? We were not supposed to be in Shanghai this long. I've been away from Canada for almost 12 years now, that part is fine. But I was NOT supposed to get stuck in one place this long. A few years ago we were supposed to go to Brazil, then it was India, then it was Vietnam. Now...meh. Shanghai for another few years. OK, the positive parts are I have a fairly good job (which was very, very frustrating last year but they've PROMISED me certain changes this year which should make it better), I have a fantastic place to live, great friends there, a good support network and a serious quantity of vacation time throughout the year. Things could absolutely be worse. Also, right now I'm going to an AMAZING gym that is kicking my ass in all sorts of awesome ways and I'm totally loving. Air is clean, kid is happy, food is good, I get to see my family and it's a good, long visit. The goal: Go back to Shanghai happy to go, knowing that I've set things up for myself so that it will be a good school year. I'll have enough support, the kid will be getting everything he needs to keep thriving, and we have plans for some awesome holidays. Mini-goals: 1 tiny goal per week Week 1: Work out 4 times (I'll be away from gym at my mom's place, so this is a little tricky), hand in papers (finishing up my masters credits) two days early Week 2: Shop for food, don't buy any unnecessary crap. Week 3: Have fun with b/f while he's in town! Poutine only twice. Go out on at least two dates sans kid. Week 4: Keep working out! Week 5: Remain sane while packing, travelling on a plane with a toddler on lap. Meditate at least 10 min per day. Week 6: Do not sink into depressed coma when returning to Shanghai, see friends, enjoy life, sign up for gym. Daily Goals: Keep refrigerator free from gross food Do not go to bed with dishes in sink Buy one of those swiffers (f you environment!) for the kitchen floor. I have the reusable pads in Shanghai, but not here Keep bathroom clean Meditate daily using Omvana app if nothing else Big Goals: Retail Therapy: Only purchase the following (these are MAXIMUM numbers, I don't shop in Shanghai, it's all over priced crap and I'm really trying to reduce my shopping foodprint). It's soo easy to overshop when I'm here, but I want to buy fewer clothes overall, but more that are better quality that will last more than a season without turning to dust/unwearable professionally. So I really save my yearly clothing budget for when I'm here, and overall I feel like I shop a lot less. Also, I am personally trying to boycott any shop that does not meet minimum safety requirements in their manufacturing, which sadly cuts out quite a few (say good bye to H&M, Gap, Old Navy). -good quality shirts for work X4 -good quality skirts for work X2 -sandals for work, flats for work -tshirts X4 (literally I have zero right now, I just threw out my last one) -a good school bag -a few new workout tops Talk to the man: Make a specific list of what needs doing week to week and work out a schedule with b/f on how to do it. This year I was 'housewife of the year' despite working a full time job. This is not cool. Date night. It's happening. I mean, with my b/f. This is more a him thing than me thing, but for our relationship it needs to be a 'we' thing or there isn't going to be much left. Kid: OMG we have so much fun together, and I really hate going back to work but I know it's sooo necessary for both of us. So, we're going to keep doing Music Together, and I would like to find him at least one more weekly thing we can do together. I think soon he can start to help out more with food choices and planning, but he's just a toddler! Me! All me!!! Keep working out! I have a lot of resources I can use (I bought some very cool DVD sets before I came away for the summer I haven't touched, really), I want to keep on working out like I'm doing here (more weights than I've ever used before), get in some yoga where I can, and maybe even back to Muay Thai a little. I have even suggested we go to Muay Thai on date night since that's where we met to begin with. Make a gratitude board for our apartment in Shanghai. I'm not at all crafty, but I'm pretty sure I can handle this. I think it involves glue and some cardboard. No grading, I just do it or I don't. I could make a rubric and see where my 'areas of opportunity' are, but I don't know if that would help. I'll think about it. Dang, I need to get this paper finished, all I can think of is rubric and learning challenges. Tomorrow is very soon, I think I'm ready. The picture is my dad, lifting my kid.
  11. Lammis

    Balance, timing.

    Soo.... After last challenge, my newbie challenge, I chose assassin as my guild. But it was a super hard choice, as I have a lot of yoga going on, have for a long time, and finding balance has always been one of the key focal points of my life. So this time I'm going to post here, because I feel like this challenge I need to bring in a little more zen, and a little less badass. A few things are happening in the next few weeks, most of which are awesome, but all of which are hectic, different, and prone to pulling me off balance. 1. End of the school year, YAAAAAAHOOOO!!!! 2. Ten days of personal development training in London. 3. 12 days with my inlaws. 4. 3 international flights alone with a toddler. 5. Going to visit my family in Canada (which will be awesome, and I'll get to be with them for a month). The background to this is, I'm a international school teacher in Shanghai, and my family lives in Canada. This is BY FAR not my first flight with the toddler on my own, but international flights are tedious enough on my own when I can quietly get bombed and watch bad movies, when I can do neither, it's a slow version of hell with a 25 lbs kid on my lap/running up and down the aisle. While in London my in laws will be flying in from Germany to care for the kid when I'm in class, which is fantastic for everyone. Then I go back to Canada and see my family with said kid, his dad/my boyfriend will eventually fly in for 10 days at the end, which is also great. But, it's a lot of moving around, a lot of being fed, a lot of times when I'm not necessarily going to be able to choose my own food (MIL is German, her food is awesome but heavy) a lot of jetlag, and a lot of disrupted schedule. When I'm back in Canada I can go to my dad's awesome gym, my brother's awesome MMA club, eat awesome healthy food. So...that. But that will be at the end of the challenge. That will be the prize. So, next 6 week, with the toughest being the mid 3, I'm going to prioritize BALANCE. Workout goals: - 3X a week: BWW/yoga workout. I'm going to try and get a prasara yoga book when I'm in Canada, but I'm totally comfortable with the workouts I've been doing and I'm going to keep on doing them. Also, I have two Barre PIlates classes left on my card that I'm going to use next week when I have a little extra time when I'm not working and the kid is at daycare. - 1 min where I do all the FULL pushups I can, with whatever time left in that minute in plank. Last week I did 15 pushups, then two days later only 10. - keep on working on my headstand to scorpion. Pre kid, this was not an issue, now it is. Pre kid I did 5X a week 90 min Muay Thai classes, I was buff. So this is taking some work, but I'd like to get back there, mostly because it's fun. - keep working on handstands as much as my shoulder allows it - prioritize backbends in yoga flow. I need to stay open to this whole thing. Especially when I'm in London. Other goals: As chez as it sounds, I have the Omvana app on my ipod and it's really working for me. It gives me 5-20 min meditations that i can just throw on while I'm on the bus to school, or on the plane, whatever. I'd like to do 5X a week. Create a packing list/what to buy list. Basically just get through the next few weeks as organized as I can possibly be. This part is obviously also going to require some flexibility and going with the flow. ENJOY the training. I'll be doing another section of my masters degree. I had a fantastic time two years ago when I did it, I had to take a year off when I had the kid, and I'm pumped to be going back. The location is outside of London in a converted manor house on what is now a golf course and convention center. So it's beautiful and kind of looks like Hogwarts. I'm really hoping I can get a bike and go back and forth by bike, it will be about a 30 min trip so that will be a great way to sneak in some more movement. Food: Keep it balanced. I'm actually in reasonably decent shape with this one right now, it should be OK. When I'm in England though, that will be harder. Not because good food is hard to come by, not at all, just because I won't be the one cooking all the time/choosing what I can eat. We'll have to play that one by ear. MIL can't be offended. Also, I'm a little tiny bit worried about what she will want to feed the kid, but you know, grandmas are for spoiling, and I am very prepared to let that go. Besides, he could use some fattening up. He's so freakin active that it's hard to keep weight on him anyway. Oh also? In England? Gluten free english muffins. I'm saved a lot by the fact that GF food in China is very expensive and often shit quality, so I just don't go over bready when I'm here. But there??? Granted last time I was there I was pregnant, but I ate a lot of english muffins and peanut butter. Both delightful in moderation. Grading...um? Yay or Nay? I don't really want to focus on this part, I just want to keep my eye on the prize. If things go awry, well I really have to keep my focus and let shit go. So that's it. I'm sure I'm leaving something out and I'm a day late posting due to random internet issues at home. It's not overly complicated at all, I don't even know if it's challenge worthy, but I want to stay focused and not get caught up and I could use some support in that area. Happy Challenging!!! P.S. "Balance. Timing." Were the only 2 words my old thai boxing instructor knew in English. He said them a lot. He was a million years old and could kick anyones ass. I remember him fondly.
  12. Hi all, I am training for a half marathon in August and am looking for cross training options that will support my running goals and that can be done with or near my boys (ages 5 and 8) on the days they are with me. This could mean activities done around the home, or outside with the kids participating, or just outside in an environment where the kids can play some other activity nearby (like a park or school athletic field). Basically, no gym, no classes. I'm hoping this thread could become a resource for other parents as well. In a related question, is it okay to vary my cross training activities, or should I stick with a few for the duration of the program (14 weeks). Some activities that have come to mind are: yoga - not sure if this is aerobic enough kettle ball swings - is this appropriate for a strength training day or a cross training day? outdoor workout stations tennis - I think the boys would really like this. Not sure how much of a workout I would get. cycling - both boys can bike, not sure how much of a workout I would get unless I put it in low gear and spin like crazy. paddle boarding - does it train the right muscles? Any ideas would be greatly appreciated. Thanks!
  13. I'm getting a bit of a jump start, but here's the outline for my 12th challenge. I want to live up to my chosen alias. My life could stand more tenacity, especially given my tendency to program hop. It could also use more glee, so I'm going to spontaneously burst into choreographed song and dance every once in a while. No, wait, that's not right. See below for my plans to be more tenacious and glee-ful. Main Goal: Build muscle and lose fat, aiming at 175 lbs and 14-15% body fat by my 40th birthday (Dec 2016). Currently at 150 lbs and ~18% BF and just turned 37. Mission 1: Complete a 31-day hard hat challenge where I will perform at least one set of bodyweight exercises every day. [+2 STA, +1 DEX] I'll already be working out 4 times a week as part of the Engineering the Alpha program (see next mission), and each of those workouts includes some bodyweight activity. That just leaves 3 days a week to fit in one set of BW exercise. Seems simple, right? I guess that's the point of the 31 day challenge. Requires tenacity and establishes consistency. I started January 1 and will continue through the 31st. I'll be mixing up my exercises with Decline Push-ups, Diamond Push-ups, Dips, Pull-ups, Hanging Knee Lifts, and Suspended Chest Flyes once my suspension straps come in. If I get crunched for time, I may just bust out some air squats or regular push-ups. Grading: A = 28-31 days B = 24-27 days C = 20-23 days D = 15-19 days F = <15 days Mission 2: Continue to follow the Prime and Adapt phases of the Engineering the Alpha program. [+2 STR, +2 CHA] I started the EtA program midway through the last challenge, but didn't really dedicate myself. So, I took advantage of the Bonus Holiday Challenge to re-start Phase 1 (Prime) for two weeks. For this challenge, I'll complete weeks 3 and 4 of the Prime phase and then do weeks 1-4 of the Adapt phase. Following the program should result in increased strength and reduced belly circumference, but I don't want to set specific bench marks because my body never reacts quite like I think it will. This one will be more of a pass/fail. Grading: A = Complete Prime and Adapt F = Do not complete Prime and Adapt Mission 3: Follow a 16/8 fasting/feeding pattern along the guidelines of the Engineering the Alpha program, tracking calories and macronutrients at least 5 days a week. [+3 CON, +1 WIS] I will follow the preset guidelines for training and non-training days and track using MyFitnessPal. The diet requirements change a bit when I move from Prime to Adapt, but I'm going to shoot for falling within a certain range of the prescribed macros. For the Prime stage, I'll shoot for 85-100 grams of protein a day and 50-100 grams of carbs per day. I'll figure out Adapt before Week 3. I'll probably use http://www.eatthismuch.com/ for help setting my menu to match my macros. For scoring, days within 10g of goal (above or below) will be full points for the day, within 20g = half a point, within 30g = a quarter point. Over 30g above or below for the day disqualifies. I'll award points for both protein and carbs. I'm stealing this from Hammlin and modifying it, so I have no idea how reasonable it is... 51-60 points = A 41-50 points = B 31-40 points = C 21-30 points = D 0-20 points = F Life Mission: Have fun with the family! [+2 CHA, +1 WIS] My goal is to complete at least 3 weekend activities from the Geek Dad's Guide to Weekend Fun with my kids. I want to spend more time investing in them and less time interacting with my phone. My kids are still pretty young (2 and almost 5), so I'm limited on how many of the activities are age-appropriate for them, but I think I can find 3 good ones. Currently considering: Superhero ABC book using construction paper, glue sticks, and pics from the internet Geeky Art Prints with shaving cream and food coloring Alien Drums with various lengths of PVC pipe See the World From the Sky with balloons and a Flip video camera Grading: A = 3 projects B = 2 projects C = 1 project F = 0 projects There you have it! I'll add in my starting measurements by Monday. edited 1/3/14 to add attribute points, scoring, and detailed description of missions edited 1/6/14 to correct scoring on goal #3
  14. THE JOURNEY CONTINUES... Installment three. MAIN GOAL. Lower bodyfat percentage. ADDITIONAL GOALS FOR THIS CHALLENGE. Stick to personal trainers 21 day Paleo meal plan. Blog about it. LIVE IT. Work out 6 days a week in some fashion for at least 30 minutes. Drop the self-depreciation. Seriously. LIFE QUEST. One craft project a week with my children. One main craft project for myself for the duration of the challenge. MOTIVATION. This weird and oddly humbling feeling that I discovered whereby it's okay to live in the moment and not sweat the small stuff. It's given me so much more momentum than I thought it would. BEFORE STATS.
  15. Hey, I'm teaching some kids in secondary school (ages 13 - 14) about the importance of silence in our lives. I was thinking of adding some meditation, or Yoga or Tai Chi and was wondering if some of you druids could give me some suggestions for good exercises?
  16. This is rather exciting, isn't it? Welcome to my first challenge. Let's go: Main Quest: Where do you want to be in a few months? I want to be living on a paleo diet. I'm a Weight Watchers leader, but I don't think the two ideas are mutually exclusive. Both involve a lot of vegetables, after all, and I won't get fired for going paleo. I trialed a paleo diet for my husband and I last year (before Christmas) and we both felt better for it, especially my husband. Along with paleo for us, I want to work on a better diet for our two children. Last year both our 4 year old son and 2 year old daughter were diagnosed as autistic (our son is severely so) and as a result we cut out additives and preservatives from their diet. The difference was apparent within 24 hours! But the kidlet's diet is fairly unvarying and rather lacking in vegetables, yes even if I hide them. Pick three incredibly specific goals (diet and fitness related) that will help you achieve your Main Quest. 1. Cut the milk in my coffee back to nothing. This is harder than it sounds! I love my coffee. I used to have a LOT, around seven a day, but I cut it out entirely for Lent last year and after 40 days with no caffeine I decided that I didn't need that many after all. We have a K-Fee machine, and the milk frothery thingie min is 130ml of milk. Yesterday I was down to 125ml, today it's 120ml. I'm going to slowly reduce the milk over the six weeks until it's all gone and there's no longer any dairy in my diet. I think I'll have to make a bigger black coffee though... 2. Setting up a time for meal planning each week and twice weekly shopping trips. This is harder than it sounds with the two kids! They love going grocery shopping, but it'll be easier without them. 3. Organise an appointment with an autism-specific dietician and get a program for the kids. Our son is a sometimes fussy eater - except with fruit, where he'll eat ANYTHING - but our daughter steals any leftovers and will hang off our knees like a dog looking for scraps. She's classified as obese, but that's apparently okay at the moment as she's growing taller and not gaining any weight, so she's kinda thinning out. Oh, and if anyone has any suggestions for a completely child-proof fridge lock that doesn't involve chains and a padlock I'd love to hear about it. Our fridge door is currently shut with duct tape to keep our son out, because he can open anything child-proof. Life Side Quest: A quest not related to diet and fitness that will help level up your life. Cleaning up the bungalow in our back yard. We rent our house and there is a MASSIVE back yard with a two room bungalow in it. The back room has the adults books and all of my knitting/crochet/sewing equipment and books. I cleared it out beautifully last September but it's become a bombsite again, so I'm just going to clear out a lot of things to the op shop and various friends. The front room in the bungalow is being turned into an ABA workroom for the kids. My husband and I are undergoing our first training course at the end of February and I want the front room to be our kid's workroom. That's going to involve sorting out the kid's stuff and painting the room as well, not to mention fixing the sagging ceiling. If I can I'll paint my backroom too - a nice workroom would be inspiring for me too! Whelp, that's my plans. I'm currently rather unwell with bronchitis, but most of what I want to do doesn't involve much leg work, so that's okay. I'll be back to my normal exercise next week, hopefully, which will help with my current sanity levels. I'll keep you all updated
  17. Whenever I meet new people I get nervous and start talking nonstop about myself so that after a 10 minute conversation I've usually learned nothing more than their name. So, let's try that shall we? I'm normally called Andrea and I live in Melbourne, Australia with my husband, two kids, a cat and a large amount of yarn. When my daughter was six weeks old (August 2011) I joined Weight Watchers (again) and lost 18kg, 30kg in total from the day I had my baby. It took me 33 weeks, and I started working for the company as a leader almost straight away. My weight was 63kg, I weighed almost 15kg less than when I got married and the same as I did at 16! Life was pretty sweet. In February of this year our son (currently four) was diagnosed as severely autistic and my neatly placed house of cards came crashing down. I didn't plan meals, I didn't shop properly, I ate everything in sight in between crying fits. To add insult to injury our daughter was also diagnosed as autistic, albeit a milder varient that her brothers. I just want to make clear that I don't plan to use my childrens conditions as an excuse to wallow in pity and booze and Tim Tams. I don't even like Tim Tams. I'm currently 67.9kg (that was this morning's weigh in) and not particularly impressed with myself. I'm coming to the Rebellion as someone who knows what she has to do and know that there's no reason she can't succeed. My biggest problem has always been motivation, and a deep abiding loathing of exercise. However, I have on my side the greatest partner in crime in my husband who I sent to Nerd Fitness with the proviso "Read up on this and tell me we can do it". His enthusiasm was fantastic, with the result that we've both started a paleo based diet today (I'll eventually wean myself off my coffee addiction) and the two of us getting up early to exercise - me off and sprinting with the 20 minute interval training and my poor husband trying to execute the beginner body weight workout with a very interested two-year old trying to assist. What do I want from here? I want to be able to run 5km with my dad. I want to be less tired and more active. I want to wake up without a feeling of dread each morning. I want to be awe inspiring. What am I bringing to this? Stubbornness. Personal knowledge of success. The ability to quote Princess Bride from the opening computer game noises to the closing music. A mind so flexible I can pull it out of my ears and tie it under my chin. Oh, and a Sonic Screwdriver toothbrush. Bring. It.
  18. Probably the nerdiest thing about me is that I LOVE to watch anime. Probably the thing that I DO most often is MOM stuff. (in fact I am giving my daughter a bath right now!!.. well she is playing with toys in the bath.. I am sitting on the toilet next to her typing.) I'd like to find other people who are dealing with marriage, kids, keeping up with nerdy past-times AND trying to get healthy (in whatever way you choose). Because if we are honest with ourselves our first priority is NOT fitness (what?!!). It is probably our families, but we can STILL do it!! It is difficult, but not impossible. There are days where you meet all of your goals, YES!!! There are days where you barely make it out covered in finger paint and poop, Noooo! So we... We who battle everyday to keep fitness in the mix. We who finally get the kids to bed and instead of collapsing on the couch choose to do push-ups or a work-out DVD... We can do it!! Who is with me?? If you are participating in the 6 week challenge please let me know!
  19. Alrighty, then... time to get this done! MAIN QUEST: To weigh 190 lbs by September 8, 2013, and to have a body fat percentage of <15% by Dec 31, 2013. Mission #1: Eliminate soda and other sugary drinks from my diet, completely. I currently drink around 500 calories a day in soda and other sugary drinks. By eliminating these, alone, I shed 3,500 calories (that's one pound) per week from my diet!!! I will replace these drinks with 100 ounces of water each day, supplemented by teas (unsweet) and coffee (black) as needed for now. A: No sugary drinks in a day; 100 ounces of water. B: No sugary drinks in a day; 75 ounces of water. C: No sugary drinks in a day; 50 ounces of water. D: One sugary drink in a day; 50 ounces of water. F: 2+ sugary drinks in a day or <50 ounces of water. Mission #2: Prepare (and eat) five Zero Willpower Eating System meals each week. The ZWES was designed by Six Pack Shortcuts. It focuses on preparing healthy meals on Sunday and freezing / refrigerating for consumption throughout the week. Five meals a week is a great start, I think. Next challenge around, I will kick this up a notch. A: Five ZWES meals in a week. B: Four ZWES meals in a week. C: Three ZWES meals in a week. D: Two ZWES meals in a week. F: 0-1 ZWES meals in a week. Mission #3: Perform Six Pack Shortcut exercises five days a week. I will start with their Insane Home Fat Loss program for two weeks, then switch to the Six Pack Shorcuts program with two extra workouts of IHFL each week. A: Five SPS workout days, with two extra sessions of IHFL. (Or simply five IHFL workouts the first two weeks.) B: Four SPS workout days, with two extra sessions of IHFL. (Or simply four IHFL workouts the first two weeks.) C: Three SPS workout days, with one extra session of IHFL. (Or simply three IHFL workouts the first two weeks.) D: Two SPS workout days, with one extra session of IHFL. (Or simply two IHFL workouts the first two weeks.) F: 0-1 SPS workout days, or no extra sessions of IHGL. (Or simply one IHFL workouts the first two weeks.) LIFE QUEST: Start every day with an Hour of Power, and a Next-Day Planning Session every night. My Hour of Power will consist of: My workout Deep breathing exercises Gratitude Bible reading JournalMY MOTIVATION(S) I am so frustrated by how difficult it is to play with my kids. I feel sore and winded every time I try getting down to play with them, and that makes me cranky and unable to be totally present for them both. Also, I want to enjoy adventures with my wife and keep my... umm... bedroom stamina high! I want to be able to devour her on a regular basis (and have her WANT me to devour her because of my sexy abs and arms)! Finally, I am sick and tired of being seen as the un-athletic friend! I enjoy playing sports, but I lack motivation because I feel winded and unable to perform at the level of my friends. NO MORE! My wife, Rachel My daughter, Kate (1 yr, DOB 4/18/12) My son, Jack (1 mo, DOB 6/25/13)
  20. I'm going to be a Dad in June! I have every intention of remaining committed to my running and overall fitness throughout the kid's life, and a running stroller seems like a great way to minimize time spent away. What brands, features, and details should I be considering? A reasonable price is, of course, welcome, but I'm okay with spending extra if it means a better experience or a safer ride.
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