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  1. Luke Skywalker: Oh, come on! How could you know my father? You don't even know who I am. Oh, I don't even know what I'm doing here! We're wasting our time!Yoda: [sighs, looks upward] I cannot teach him. The boy has no patience.Obi-Wan Kenobi: [voice emanates from nowhere] He will learn patience.Yoda: Much anger in him, like his father.Obi-Wan Kenobi: Was I any different when you taught me?Yoda: He is not ready!Luke Skywalker: Yoda? I am ready! I— Ben, I can be a Jedi! Ben tell him I'm rea— [bangs his head on the low ceiling] Ow!Yoda: [to Luke] Ready are you? What know you of ready? For 800 years have I trained Jedi. My own counsel will I keep on who is to be trained! A Jedi must have the deepest commitment, the most serious mind. This one, a long time have I watched. All his life has he looked away to the future, the horizon. Never his mind on where he was [pokes Luke]. Hmm? What he was doing. [paces around] Adventure. Heh! Excitement. A Jedi craves not these things. [turns to Luke and points with his walking stick] You are reckless!Obi-Wan Kenobi: So was I, if you remember.Yoda: [still looking at Luke] He is too old. Yes. Too old to begin the training.Luke Skywalker: But I've learned so much.Yoda: [looking toward the sky] Will he finish what he begins?Luke Skywalker: I won't fail you! I'm not afraid.Yoda: [grimly] Oh! You will be. You will be. Main Goal I'm planning to to to Blue Mountain, Ontario, in October for the 2017 OCR World Championships. I could register right now as a Journeyman as I have completed the requisite three or more qualifying events since the last Championships. I don't want to just show up as an enthusiastic course-filler, though. I want to qualify as an Age Group competitor by earning my spot through competition. The black one on the left is what I'm after. How realistic is this goal? On July 30, 2016, I finished 24 minutes behind the OCRWC qualifier time for the 50-54 age group at Savage Race Chicago.This past February 25, I ran the Spartan Sprint in Arizona while sick as hell and finished 15 minutes behind the final OCRWC qualifier time. I am working with a running coach who has given me a plan to increase my speed over distance. I know I'm getting better, but I believe I still have time to make up. I've used my 10k time as my guideline for improvement, since it's the same distance or longer than my two A races for this year; over the past year and a half, I've knocked about 10 minutes off my PR for 10k and am working to trim even more off by the end of July, when my two "A" Races are held: Savage Race Chicago, July 30 Conquer the Gauntlet Des Moines, August 5 What will it take for me to get there? I now have 10 weeks to close the gap on my competition. I'm still slow enough over distance that some solid dedication will trim off large chunks of time, though. As I identified before the last challenge, it's going to take me, getting out of my head, casting off my own perceived limitations, and pushing beyond my comfort zone. What I want is still on the other side of comfortable. I'm not going to let the two races in this challenge cycle - the Chicago Spartan Super and Sprint on June 10-11, and the Minnesota Spartan Sprint at the end of this cycle on June 24 - alter my training toward my goal. I'm going to be doing a boatload of hills between now and June 24, because if I don't, I will die on the ski hill here at home, but that won't replace anything in my schedule, and it will make me a better runner overall anyway. The Chicago and Minnesota Spartans are B (Chicago Sprint) and C races on my calendar, and will be run accordingly. I will not be risking injury or fighting my way off-trail (like the hard-core "ON YOUR LEFT" people who expect others to yield during a section of a bushwhacked single-track and then leap through the brush when you can't, while cursing loudly) during either one of these events. I aim to enjoy all three, and if an OCRWC qualifier occurs at any, well, that's great, too. I've got ten weeks. Goal: Faster I've become faster than I was - three of my last four road races were all personal bests, and the fourth met a goal time - but if I want to be faster, I've got to run, consistently. Two challenges ago I put on more consistent miles and started getting the hoped-for results. Last challenge I got a new running plan from my coach, Josh, and I just set a PR in a 5k in terrible conditions at the end of the last challenge, even though I missed my own personal goal time. Now it's time to put on some significant mileage and be able to sustain those paces for longer, in order to achieve my goals. This will be the schedule for this challenge: Week Zero: 3 miles VO2 Max Monday, Hills Tuesday, 4 miles Lactate Threshold Wednesday, 3 miles Thursday for consistency, Hills Friday, 10 miles Saturday, Incline Trainer Sunday Week One: 3 miles VO2 Max Monday, Hills Tuesday, 4 miles Lactate Threshold Wednesday, 3 miles Thursday for consistency, Hills Friday, Badass Dash followed by 4 mile trail run Saturday, Incline Trainer Sunday Week Two: 3 miles VO2 Max Monday, Hills Tuesday, 4 miles Lactate Threshold Wednesday, 3 miles Thursday for consistency, Hills Friday, Chicago Spartan Super Saturday, Chicago Spartan Sprint Sunday Week Three: 3 miles VO2 Max Monday, Hills Tuesday, 4 miles Lactate Threshold Wednesday, 3 miles Thursday for consistency, Hills Friday, 10 miles Saturday, Hills Sunday Week Four: 3 miles Monday, 3 miles Tuesday, 3 miles Wednesday, 3 miles Thursday, Minnesota Spartan Sprint Saturday (this is also my annual Youth Group Mission Trip week, hoo boy), trail run Sunday Yes, I'm planning on either running or climbing hills almost every day for the next 10 weeks. This is what it's going to take. Goal: Stronger This has been working, but they moved one of my lift days at the gym. I'm replacing it with Boot Camp due to convenience. I need to be more consistent with my own body-weight workouts. Part 1: Week Zero: Lift Day Tuesday, Boot Camp Thursday, Obstacle Academy Friday, OCR WOW Weekend Week One: Lift Day Tuesday, Boot Camp Thursday, Obstacle Academy Friday, Badass Dash Saturday Week Two: Lift Day Tuesday, Boot Camp Thursday, Chicago Spartan Super/Sprint Weekend Week Three: Lift Day Tuesday, Boot Camp Thursday, Obstacle Academy Friday, OCR WOW Weekend Week Four: Youth Group Mission Trip where I'll be doing manual labor all week, MN Spartan Sprint Saturday Part 2: Continuing the Grease the Groove pull-up training method I stole gratuitously from @Big_Show. I'll be recording the total number of pull-ups completed every day, not just full dead-hang strict pull-ups. I wanted to average at least 20 per day over the last challenge, but it was more like 12-15. I'm aiming for 15 to 20 per day this time around. Part 3: Also during the last challenge, I tried to accumulate 200 push-ups per day; this wound up being more like 60 to 120 per day. I'm going to try again, shooting for 120 to 200 per day. Not hard if I get in a few sets of 20 during my workday at my desk. Challenge Plan Summary I can do this. Goal: Smaller I know my macros work. I'm still trying to refine so that I meet goals based on my daily needs; I'll be sticking with what I set the last time around, because actually meeting these targets daily was not so much "hit and miss" as "stormtrooper-level miss". 10 weeks of dedication to attempt to meet a goal I set before the first of the year. That's only two challenge cycles; not quite the home stretch right now, but I can see it from here, and I need to be ready. Here we go. We all know what Yoda would say here.
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