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  1. Step 1: Buy ninja knives on Amazon for mad cheap Step 2: Build target and paint smiley face on it cuz why can't ninjas be happy Step 3: Giggle inwardly like a maniac as neighbors literally come rushing out of their houses to see what all the clanging is about Step 4: ???? Step 5: Become ninja Seriously. If you're looking for something a little different, this investment cost me about 20 bucks ($8 for the knives, $12 for some 2x4's and screws). The knives make a shockingly loud TANG when you miss, but the THOK when they stick is satisfying on some deep, caveman level. These are the knives, and here is a lovely guide to the target. I got maybe 1 out of my first 9 throws to stick. Then got 2 out of my second 9. At this rate, I will be a ninja by lunchtime.
  2. So, 2017 was hard for me. Me, basically all of 2017 I am still dealing with the existential crisis I dealt with all year, I gained all of my weight back that I had lost in 2015-2016, and I just let other people's issues come first, when I should have been prioritizing my own life. So, you know, 2017 can Anyway, 2018 is gonna be my year. I need it to be. Six years of graduate school really took a toll on my mental and physical health, and I refuse to go into my 30s less healthy than I went into my 20s. So, it's time to catch up on a few things. Actual footage of me trying to catch up to my goals We all know that I am someone who enjoys the video games, especially MMOs and RPGs. I have recently gotten back into Final Fantasy XIV, on which I have a level 70 Ninja and am leveling up Bard. So I thought I'd do an MMO/FFXIV-themed challenge for this first challenge of 2018. Specifically, I'd do some tank, healer, and DPS quests. Keep it simple of course. Here we go! Measurement Spreadsheet 2018 Road Map TANK: WARRIOR Quest 1: Strength training twice a week Bonus EXP: Work on pull ups Quest 2: Get 100g of protein per day Bonus EXP: Eat less than 120g carbs per day HEALER: SCHOLAR Quest 1: Read one book over course of challenge Bonus EXP: Any additional books read Quest 2: Finish up one research project over course of challenge Bonus EXP: Any additional projects completed DPS: NINJA Quest 1: Running, twice a week Bonus EXP: Interval training Quest 2: Stretching, every day Bonus EXP: Work on splits DPS: BARD Quest 1: Tennis, once a week (may replace with running if league isn't going) Bonus EXP: Win a match Quest 2: Write two blog posts over course of challenge Bonus EXP: Any additional blog posts written
  3. Recently I was inspired by seeing a couple of snowshoe hares in the woods up north. They were between their summer and winter fur colors (as above), which I found fascinating. They are survivalists, enduring all four seasons in extreme situations, with numerous predators and competitors. They have to be highly skilled (and a bit lucky) to survive. But mainly it was their alertness and mindful movement that inspired me. They reminded me that I've really been neglecting quadrupedal (QM) in the parkour training. A major part of this challenge will be a constant reminder to myself to include QM practice in my training. Another major aspect of this challenge will be defeating urge to back down or give up. The past few weeks have been hard on my body, and I'm not entirely sure why. I suspect I have been fighting off an infection, one that thankfully I have shown no other symptoms other than fatigue. I suspect the road trip up north I took last weekend took its toll, so I might be feeling the effects of that as well. Lastly, I also suspect it is just the change of the season that's affecting me. It's dark for longer in the morning. Days start out cold, requiring a jacket, but quickly progress to short-sleeve shirt weather by afternoon. And there's the temperature in my car if it's been sunny all day. It might as well be summer. That kind of wild variation throughout a day really seems to play havoc with my body. It makes me not want to move or go out. It also makes my body take a little longer to recover from workouts. Because of this, I am allowing for a somewhat lesser quantity in my workouts for this challenge, in the hope that the quality of my workouts will not suffer, and so that I can maintain a level of consistency. Part of not giving up or backing down (for the long term) is knowing when to slow down or dial back just a little bit (in the short term) in order to endure. I think I am currently at a point where this is necessary. Part 1 - The Daily/ Weekly Tasks: 1. Practice parkour, minimum of twice per week. I will shoot for three times per week, as I always have, but I am giving myself permission to opt for twice per week when I feel it will be better for my body. On days where the weather doesn't cooperate, training indoors with bodyweight exercises will suffice. 2. Practice Quadrupedal Movements (QM) with each parkour workout. Especially work towards developing the QM gallop. This can be done indoors on days with poor weather. 3. As always, daily meditation. This has become quite old-hat, but it's worth mentioning because it's worth doing. 4. Compliment each mediation with yoga and/ or qigong. I find adding a little moving meditation to the sitting meditation is very helpful. 5. Remember to play and have fun. Mix things up from time to time. Play with "ninja stuff" like shuriken, bokken, and nunchaku (I have recently made a assortment of bo shuriken from 7 and 10 inch nails - they are quite fun). Part 1 - The Daily/ Weekly Tasks (REVISED 10/30/2017): 1. Bodyweight exercises, three times per week minimum. This will continue until I am feeling up to snuff to continue outdoor parkour training. I plan to use the "grease the groove" approach to training rather than a fixed number of sets and reps done in one sitting. I plan to alternate between pull-ups/ dips and push-ups/ bodyweight squats. More days of training may be added, if feasible. 2. Play with weapons! Three times per week. Because being a ninja is fun! Shuriken, nunchaku, bokken, unarmed (my fists and feet are weapons)...all of it is fair game. 3. Daily yoga, qigong, and meditation in the evenings. This helps me stay physically and mentally put together. The physical side may be dropped once or twice per week, if needed to recover from injury or soreness. However, I have found that in most cases even a small amount of yoga or qigong, even through injury, is more beneficial than 100% rest. Part 2 - The Bullet Journal: This is a brand new thing for me. I saw it advertised by Jonesy in the Assassin's Den. I figure it's worth a shot, as I could really use a boost to my list-making and overall organization. I have joined the accountability group for this. I have no idea what I'm getting into. That's ok. Here goes nothing...
  4. it's august! it's hectic! I'm going to have a big august that will need to be weekifIed, and can only be unified by the training I have to do for the 8K I am signing up for on the VERY LAST DAY OF THE CHALLENGE! GOALS! * Do the Hal Hidgon Running Thing - which also includes getting the movements in on the other days, too. I'm following the HH 8K Novice program which I've done a few times before and like a lot. I'm already on week 7, what is this magicalness? out of a total of 8 weeks.... so this week I will do 7, next week 6, the following week 7, and then I'll have 8 the last week of the challenge / week of the 8K, right on schedule. the 8K is 9/9/17. * GET THE PROTEINS. this is going to be tricky because I'm going to be on the road for all of or partial weeks 1-3. so.... this will take some work. I'm aiming for 120 g ish or as much as I can get over 100 without being a disaster pants. Simultaneously, STICK TO THE BUDGETS. hit up that calorie budget yo. you know what works good for you. try to do your very best because YOU KNOW THAT THERE WILL BE SLIPPAGE WITH ALL THE TRAVEL. * WRITE THE THINGS DOWN and plan the things. This is super critical! I need to do this to meet goal #1, so it's kinda cheating. I'm ok with that. As my tkd instructor says - if you're not cheating you're not trying. Bonus planning points for reading up about strength training and prepping for convos with my dojo owner about deadlifting, because I'd like to give that a shot next month. ALSO, I didn't write ANYTHING down in my hobobujo last challenge and that bums me out. Here's my epic schedule: Week 1: PREP FOR BEACH / GO TO OHIO Week 2: BEACH BODY BEACH PARTY PLUS BONUS ECLIPSE Week 3: BUSINESS BODY BUSINESS TRIP Week 4: OH MY GOSH IT'S SEPTEMBER ok in? IN.
  5. What are some workout add ons that you guys think are a necessity for your martial art. From basic to advanced I want to put a list together of the things all monks think are important. This means anything you think overall for any martial art, or any that are specific to your style. Like upper and lower body condidtioning(locations and reasoning), Stretches (type and reasoning). It doesn't need to be long drawn out explanations but I'm a curious person. Thank you for your time! Thanks Peeps!, GodzillaofTokyo
  6. Hey guys! My husband and I will be running in the Mud Ninja! If anyone wants to meet up and run with us in the 11:30 wave, feel free to! Information: http://www.mudninja.com/?page_id=22 This will be my fourth mud run and hubby's first. It's a 5k with 25 obstacles to get over! also guaranteed to get you dirty and blood pumping. Check it out!
  7. Hi Nerds! I found this forum because it's an "epic quest for awesome" for the desk jockeys, nerds, and average Joe's. I'm an average Joe working my way up through the ranks in the American Ninja Warrior competition. I started my journey a month ago and now looking for support from people to help me through this process. It's a long road ahead to qualify, soooo I'm going to be posting my progress. I will be sharing everything fitness. Those will include what I'm digesting on a daily to keep my fitness up. What's hurting (i.e. grip strength, ego, soul...). I'll share my journey every step of the way that relates to health and fitness to hopefully inspire others to do crazy stuff because, who wants to live a "normal" life? Feel free to follow me on my YouTube channel for my "epic quest" to qualify: http://bit.ly/noobsvsninjas Here's my latest episode of my fails. http://bit.ly/noobsepisode4
  8. Third Challenge here on the forums first with the Assassins. The reason for the titlle is that Rock Lee is my favorite Naruto character and I find his story extremely inspiring.Now on to the goals Goal One A Shinobe has to be physically fit in order to carry out his missions. For this constent training is required. My goal for this challenge is to do something active every day exept Sundays. This can range from something as simple as a walk to a knock down drag out multi hour workout. Some sub goals I would like to reach are Three strength workouts each week with a focas on body weight Three cardio workouts per week Atleast one hour of martial arts practice per week Be able to do one arm pushups by the end of the challenge Be able to do one of my favorite bodyweight circuits 10 times through with no rest Be able to run for 20 minutes straight. Goal Two It is never known what a mission will entitle thus one must train for great muscular endurance as well as strength. This goal is to try to do 500 reps of a bodyweight exercise in a single workout over the fewest sets possible. The rough schedule for this is Week One. Squats Week Two. Pushups Week Three. Situps Week Four. Bench Dips(My triceps are my weakest body part thus I'm training them here) Week Five. Lunges(My triceps are followed closely by my legs) Week Six. Pullups(These are last because I have the most work to do on them) Goal Three With all the training and fighting a ninja needs to make sure his body is properly fueled. I'm going to try counting calories and hopefully be a bit more consistent with my eating habits since in my last challenge I would eat anywhere from 500(I forget to eat if I'm wrapped up in something) to probably over 10,000(It was my grandparants anniversary, we took them out to Golden Corral). Life Goal It's imperative that one be able to blend in and communicate wherever one may be. Learn two new words in Spanish every day. So thats my Rock Lee challenge. I'll post scoring and all later including a rough schedule. I've decided that if I score 90% or higher on all goals that I'll change my name on the forum since I've had some people tell me that my current one is hard to pronounce.
  9. So the Bye Weeks Challenge have made me realise something. Six weeks is too big a period of time for me to deal with in one go. It's like when I used to be at uni and would be given a huge assignment months in advance, I would do sod all for months and then live in the library for the last couple of weeks up until the deadline. Two weeks however is a much more manageable chunk. I feel like I can 'make a special effort for two weeks' in a way that sounds mentally exhausting to commit to for six weeks. Also with the usual six week format if I fuck up in the first couple of weeks I then feel like I have ruined the whole challenge so there is no point anyway. SO this time around I am breaking my challenge down in to 2 weeks blocks, starting unofficially over in the Bye Weeks Challenge. I will set my goals for the following two weeks. based on what I have learned on the proceeding two weeks. I might end up doing the same thing for another two weeks or I might make a few little tweaks.
  10. Main Quest Enjoy Every day of 2015 Current Quests 1 Pistol Squat 5s handstand 1 pull up 1 handstand push up Motivations be strong look good be a show off be happy be content have fun survive winter It's winter here now, and I just want to curl up under my doona until Spring returns. Unfortunately that's very unproductive and counter-intuitive, especially if I want to have an epically strong and shapely bod for when I can finally wear something that shows some skin without freezing my bits off. The lack of sun also makes me quite S.A.D, and I know this, so I'm taking it easy on myself and doing the bare minimum that I can and still feel like I'm doing good. Also things I know I should be doing but just don't. I just need to keep repeating my ideal habits until they are automatic and I don't have to angst over having to workout or do the damn dishes. Some quests are repeats from the last few, some are new because I need a change. QUEST ONE: Keep doing the moving about thing Bodyweight routine 2 days a week. Two days break in between for optimal rest (routine allowing). I'm trying to build strength here, no weight loss or meticulous calorie counting or anything. Just getting stronger and better at controlling my body, and proving to myself how awesome I can be if I put some effort in. My work schedule is all over the shop so I just need to fit in 1 hour of exercise two days a week around my work days. Probably going to end up being a week day and a weekend day. My current routine I've been doing for the past two challenges, and I still like it. It focuses on pushing, pulling, leg stuff and core stuff for some sort of coverage of all my limbs. As soon as I hit a plateau / feel too comfortable with an exercise, I'll change it up for something harder. This is where I'm at currently. Push: Decline Push ups. Going to work on getting my legs higher and get to doing handstand push ups. Well, and a handstand. xD Pull: Negative Pull ups. Following 50pullups.com, or near enough to it. Working towards an actual pull up. Legs: Bulgarian Split Squats with a 6kg dumbbell in each hand (12kg total). Working towards a pistol squat with some weight in my outstretched hands for balance. I can get down, but not up again at the moment! Core: Hollow Body Holds. Taken from GMB's handstand tutorial. Working on being able to hold my legs and arms out straight for a whole minute, then I'm moving to wall handstand things (I think) QUEST TWO: Do the sleeping thing. Between 8 - 8.5 hours sleep every night, preferably between 10pm - 6am. I've slept between 10pm - 6am every night this week and I've definitely noticed a more steady energy level during the day, especially while I'm at work. I can't afford to be exhausted from lack of sleeping (waitressing is hard enough) so I'm making this a thing that I have to stick to. Just getting 8 hours sleep is acceptable on the weekend (in case I stay up late or want a sleep in on days I don't have to work / workout) Should also help me be less S.A.D. QUEST THREE: Spread the discipline QUEST FOUR: Be nice to yourself every day! TL;DR; QUEST 1: Bodyweight sessions 2x a week. QUEST 2: Sleep between 8 - 8.5 hours every night. QUEST 3: 20 minutes of doggy play time daily. QUEST 4: Do something selfish daily. Quests 3 & 4 cancelled due to life. xD
  11. Name: Hammlin "Hammi" Race: Wood Elf | Class: Footpath Ranger Leader Level: 19 (STR):44.25 (DEX):41.25 (STA):32 (CON):31.25 (WIS):31.5 (CHA):27.25 Motivation: Bacon Bits continues to grow and he has begun to KICK. Mr Ham and I have decided that he takes after his dad and has already begun his karate training. I am apparently rocking an internal Dojo. My challenge quests are focused around the 12 week Bradley Natural Childbirth classes that we just started- designed to let me have a drug and mostly doctor free labor. Main Quest: Be Healthy for Bacon Bits (baby) Part III (June 9 - July 19) Missions: 1. Relax. 10 minutes, twice per day I will either take a nice calm quiet walk or use my Brainwave app. 2. Exercise. I have a checklist of pre-labor exercises that I am supposed to do everyday. 3. Tracking. The childbirth class that I'm in has specific food/macro-nutrient/dietary recommendations that we mark off and hand in at the next week class, all designed to help baby get what he needs. Life Quest: 4. Home. Things have taken a drastic turn since the start of the last challenge. In a story that is too long and personal to explain via the interweb, we sold our house (close June 23rd) and will be living with my mother in law for a couple months while we look for something that is more suitable for our family. The quest is to find a home by September.... Yikes... Like the last challenge, I won't be tracking or grading myself. I just need to be mindful and focused right now. I don't need one more thing to do or feel bad about, if I forget.
  12. This is my first challenge as an Assassin, and I'm very excited. Also determined. I'm sick of flaking out halfway through challenges. I want to be that version of myself where I put my whole being into everything I do and rock the shit out of it. Or, at least feel like I tried to rock the shit out of it, even if I fail. Even if I'm aching from DOMS. Gonna be a bit of that this challenge. xD MAIN QUEST: Enjoy Every Day of 2015 CURRENT QUEST: Get strong! do 1x5 pull ups do 1x5 pistol squats do a freestanding handstand for 30 seconds look better naked wear more black Quest 1 - Prepared for anything. Do this after waking up every day. I struggle to wake up easily some mornings, but getting up and moving normally helps. It should also prepare my body before I workout on the days I do also. (from Steve’s TMNT workout) • Neck rolls: 5 each direction. • Shoulder shrugs: 5 each direction • Arm circles: 10 each direction • Wrist Circles: 10 each direction • Bends at the waist and touching the ground: 10 reps • Hip circles: 10 each direction • Forward leg swings: 10 each leg • Side leg swings: 10 each leg • frogger jumps x10 Quest 2 - Ninja Skills I read through Waldo’s guide to body weights, and think I’ve built a full-body workout that I can push myself in and still feel like I’m achieving something. If I can see myself adding reps/minutes to exercises, then I can’t complain that I never see any results. 3 days p/week. Proficiency is when sets are completed with no shaking [do mobility first!] Super Set 1: 45degree incline push ups to failure x3 (working up to 3x10) inverted rows to failure x3 (to 3x10) 30s rest. Super Set 2: chair pistol squats to failure x3 (working up to 3x10) hollow body holds (up to 1min, work on straightening out) 30s rest. Quest 3 - Cleaning Ninja Clean the house, following; http://www.apartmenttherapy.com/how-to-clean-your-house-in-20-minutes-a-day-for-30-days-131142 Set a timer. Wear a ninja outfit. Make it fun! Just clean! The house is not looking too bad, but I'd like to make more of a habit of keeping it clean. I'm also pretty slack when it comes to things like cleaning the floors and shower and toilet, and I'm sure there are things I'm missing also. As I clean things, I become more aware of when it gets dirty and am more likely to clean it again when it starts to gross me out. Quest 4 - The Hit List Complete at least one task from this list daily (or anything else I consider productive not listed) Just because I need to fill my time with productive things, rather then staring at the internets all day. crafting leaving the house walking the dog meditating doing yoga gardening catching up with people I don’t live with not eating dairy (milk, cream, ice-cream, yoghurt - cheese is okay) not eating processed wheatyness (whole grains are fine) go to the actual gym Edit: Oh yeah, made myself a pretty spreadsheet to track my quests in. Edit pt. II: starting progress pics - BONUS!! TWO WEEK MINI HABIT MINI CHALLENGE I'm doing a mini challenge for the 2 week break between challenges! Starts here on this thread. basically to stop me falling off the wagon.
  13. Any Ninja Warrior fans here? I've become hooked on it, thanks in no small part to a post that Steve wrote on the Japanese version some time back. Just watched the most recent competition: USA vs the World. It had athletes from USA, Japan and Europe. And it was phenomenal. http://www.nbc.com/american-ninja-warrior/video/usa-vs-the-world/2811306?onid=189616#vc189616=1
  14. Heya Nerdly People! My name is Rachel, code name "Spaerrow" because if I could have an awesome ninja alter-ego, that is what it would be. This is what I've been up to so far and who I am: I am 22 years old and I'm on my last year of school to be a High School/ Middle School English teacher. However, I'm a multi-faceted nerd. My students have been pleasantly surprised that I catch their Zelda references and can brag about my bow-aiming skills in Oblivion. I can beat my fiance' and his friends in Super Smash Brothers any day (not bad for a girl,) and I love books and all things literature. (Check out the Wheel of Time series by Robert Jordan, you won't be disappointed.) I am also obsessed with getting healthy. I used to be a big girl. I got skinny the wrong way after discovering that I could control my weight. I got so excited and carried away with it that I was nothing but skin and bone with no muscle to my name. I took two jobs where I had tons of heavy lifting to do, therefore I became Wonder Woman. One job consisted of lifting furniture and the other consisted of lifting boxes and boxes of costumes (Halloween Store.) With a combination of malnutrition and lifting I developed a dehydrated disc that became cracked/torn and I was unable to walk for two weeks. My back has never been the same since. It's been over two years of daily pain and maintenance. I gained about 20lbs after transferring to the University and dropping my second job. It hurt to exercise so I didn't, and we all know how college eating goes. This happened for about a year. This June I became engaged to my best friend. He thinks I'm beautiful at any size (truly, not just him trying to help out my ego) but I want to look great for my wedding in less than 10 months. I began exercising, reading Nerd Fitness, eating Paleo (mostly) and I have lost a significant amount of inches and I actually have muscle!!! I am not where I want to be. I will never be stick-thin. I have wide hips and short legs and I'm ok with that, but I want to transform myself into the butt-kicking ninja I have always wanted to be. I know weight will fluctuate and if I keep on truckin' like I have then I will get to the body I've dreamed of, but I do NOT know how to help my back injury. It is better than it has been, but I really need advice on how to eradicate this persistent pain. I want to go hiking on our honeymoon in Colorado, I want to have kids, I want to play with them, I want to do handstands and jump over stuff, I want to help people move into new homes, and I want to grow old without being tied to a chair or a bed because my back won't allow me to live. So if you stayed long enough to read my story and you have some advice on how to heal this rusty old back of mine, or you want to talk about how awesome Zelda is, be my friend and talk to me! Peace out-- or whatever the kids say these days.
  15. Since I love getting a great start at the beginning of a challenge run, I'm going to do the best possible thing I can do to make the first week a week of a resounding success: go to a martial arts bootcamp at a beach site and relinquish control over my timetable to two crazy trainers who enjoy making us do push-ups in the water (in full gear of course) just a tad bit too much.[1] Oh, and what better place to write a PhD application to, well, anywhere-not-here than by putting us in straw huts with no electricity or paper whatsoever? Doesn't that sound great? … Okay, so now you know where my first week is going, let's talk about week four: the 50-year celebration of our martial arts branch in Germany and Europe, and we're hosting the event. Some 600+ people are expected to come. It's gonna get crazy. Not just that week, but also the weeks before, as everyone from our school slowly loses sanity and gives in to paranoia. Oh, and did I mention that the other Singapore application is due by end of June, right around the 50-year celebration above? … So yeah, by the looks of it, this challenge too is dominated by the "important and urgent"… and not the "important but not urgent", which is where I'm trying to get to. So, taking into account that I don't (realistically) have a lot of say in what I'll be doing, I'll be working on the small things which I can choose to do, in between everything else. In detail: Challenge Goals Burpees, burpees, burpees. To misquote a case study from Made To Stick: “Why are challenges successful? It's because of three things: Burpees, burpees, and burpees.â€[2] Therefore, I pledge to do (number of week) × 5 burpees per day, minimum. Convict Conditioning. I've been on and off CC for the whole of my NF career. If there is one major downside to this program,[3] I'd say that it is intimidating to restart if you've slacked on it for some time. (At least for me that's the case.) Therefore, I pledge to do round_up((number of week) ÷ 2) sets of at least one repetition of a CC exercise, one CC exercise per day. Both of these goals aren't exercise goals in the common sense, they're willpower goals. They're supposed to get me used to exercising regularly again. Therefore, while there is a steady increase in load (# of burpees/sets), right now I don't care about e.g. having at least 8 reps per set or so. Just that I show up and do the work, no matter how shitty it is. Side Quest Benjamin Franklin's 13 virtues. In his autobiography, Benjamin Franklin outlines 13 virtues he practiced to achieve moral perfection. I pledge to practice the 13 virtues according to Franklin's system (with modifications to virtue #12, chastity, because it's based on religion and IMO thus outdated) over the next 13 weeks. Each week, I will focus on exhibiting that week's virtue, as well as all preceding weeks' virtues, taking note of where I have failed to do so. This means that for this challenge, I will be practicing the first six virtues: temperance, silence, order, resolution, frugality and industry. And yes, there is a steady increase in load here as well. Book 7/Conclusion Of Book 6 …will come sometime next week if I find internet access, and at the beginning of week two otherwise. 1I swear I'm not making this up and I'm not exaggerating. They really love making us do this sort of stuff. 2The actual case study is about a local newspaper with above-average readership. Original: “… asked why the [local newspaper] Daily Record has been successful, [founder] Adams replies, ‘It's because of three things: Names, names, and names.’†(Chip Heath and Dan Heath. Made To Stick. p. 42) 3I hear that not everyone is happy with CC's progression system, its steps and conditions for advancing. But I don't feel knowledgable enough in calisthenics to pass (useful) judgement here.
  16. Kinda like... AMERICAN NINJA WARRIOR! Or not. Here’s what’s up: I’m going to partake in the Gladiator Rock’n’Run on September 6th, 2014. I’ve gone back and forth on my commitment to this ever since I first discovered its existence a couple months ago, only to realize that I was going back and forth because I am scared. Scared that I will not do well, or that I’ll embarrass myself. Mostly scared that I’ll be competing alone though. (Anybody accessible to the Detroit area feel free to join ) Anyway, the time for scared is not today. My interest in an event like this has never wavered, only my commitment. Its time to straighten that out. Besides, what better way to get my friends and/or family to join me than by proving I am serious and just doing one?! So, I’m just gonna lay my plan out on the line, and begin rambling my explanations afterward. Goal 1: Feed the beast Calories = 1600/day [sTA 2]Protein = aim for 125g/day (I'm really aiming for 150g but 125g is acceptable) [sTA 1 CON 1]Carbs = try for less than 130g/dayGrading for each of these is going to be simply one point for each day/42 days total. Aim for lots of days. Goal 2: Sculpt the beast I have an aggressive workout plan. Here 'tis: Weekly Schedule:MONDAY – Strength workout followed by hill sprintsTUESDAY – Kickboxing sessionWEDNESDAY – Yoga with core and balance focus (like a rest day)THURSDAY – Strength workout followed by hill sprintsFRIDAY – Long runSATURDAY – Strength workout with core focusSUNDAY – Kickboxing sessionGrading is out of 42 days, point for each day I complete the scheduled workout. Aim for lots of days.Stretching and/or mobility work after each workout will get me... [DEX 1]Making gains of some sort during each strength workout will get me... [sTR 3]Progress with hill sprints will get me... [sTA 2] and increasing my long run each week will get me... [sTA 1] ... because endurance = winningEpic kickboxing sessions that include lots of technique and form practice will get me... [DEX 2]... because I hang out with the monks so I should be more monk-y Goal 3: Rest the beast Aim for 11pm bedtime – because sleep is nice. Most days 10:30pm works well for me, but too often lately I ignore the clock for no reason, which never results in a morning workout. Grading is out of 42 days, point for each day. Aim for lots of days. [CON 1] Goal 4 [Life Goal]: Entertain the beast Read all the things – this is meant to be a fun goal. I love to read. <<gross understatement. I will allow myself time to read anything and everything I want, as long as I complete my daily challenge requirements, including workout, meal prep, etc. I have fun reading to do, and also work reading to do, and I’m not going to specify how much of each to do. I’m hoping that by giving myself permission to read whatever I want whenever I want, I’ll not feel that feeling of being on a “diet†and only getting to read work stuff. There is no grading. It’s just for funsies. [WIS 1] Rambling Explanations: (because I said I would) Yes, my challenge is challenging. Here are some thoughts on that: ​I did a lot of reading (let's call it research) to prep for this challenge. I read blogs, books and articles to gather different perspectives on training, diet, motivation, etc. I always feel like I can't make up my mind on what I want to focus on for each challenge, which results in me hastily choosing a path, only to see a shiny new path appear before I've reached the end. As a result, I feel very confident with the path I've chosen this time, because I have a reason, a why, for doing each each thing.​One of the themes I've caught from some of my recent reading has been that people always want a quick fix, the best results with the least amount of effort. And while I realize that there is another end to that spectrum, of people going too hard too fast and burning out, I feel that personally, I ride to close to the "make it easy for me" line. I always have this goal and want to see that progress and want to accomplish these things, but I don't want it to be too hard. I seem to subconsciously subscribe to the view that there has got to be an easy way to do this, I just haven't figured it out yet. It's time to push myself outside of my comfort zone. It's squishy here, and I will remain squishy if I let myself remain inside my squishy comfort zone.​How will I find time for these workouts, and not burnout, if I do in fact manage to complete them all? Well, the subject of each workout is explained like so:​Strength workout follow by hill sprints = mainly the Beginner Bodyweight Workout, with slight modifications. But this will also include a specific focus on certain areas I feel will particularly help on the obstacle course. Hill sprints, because I've read numerous times that people wish they had done these before an obstacle course. So I shall. Kickboxing session = a nice long sweaty punchy/kicky fest, but also technique practice. I'll be viewing this more as a dojo visit, because I can't actually go to a dojo. I do apologize if I put off any of you Monks with formal training, but I simply cannot afford that right now, and I'd like to still do the best I can with what I've got, and improve my form and stuffs. Yoga with core and balance focus (like a rest day) = whatever I feel like my body needs, be it stretching/flexibility stuff. A take it easy kind of workout. Long run = self explanatory. Don't be mad when my long runs aren't very long. The race distance is 6k so that's what I'm working towards.Strength workout with core focus = insert core exercises in place of hill sprints. Not sure which will suck more the next day. I'll keep you posted. So stay tuned, but beware. There will be much complaining, so much soreness, very loud music, cold showers, and burpee hate. Maybe some food porn? Yes, I am a little bit crazy. To prove it, I will owe myself 20 burpees for each day I skip a workout. Shout out to the 13th letter.
  17. Book 6 – Prologue (Previous act) After a few minutes of noise, the siren died down suddenly. From afar, I could hear footsteps approaching us. It was probably the guard team they had called for just now. I gulped. We were both underequipped and outnumbered. Things would be getting ugly any minute now. It was just me, Emma and the guard team now. “Sweetcheeks.†“Yes, Emma?†“You ready for this?†“I hope.†“You… hope?†“It’s better than nothing, right?†“True.†A second of pause. “Sweetcheeks.†“Yes, Emma?†“You know, the real fun begins once we’re out of this mess. But first, let’s focus on the mess.†“Wait… what? What do you mean, ‘real fun?’†“Your ninja training.†“Ninja training? That stuff again?†“Yup. Only this time, it’s for real.†“What that supposed to mean? Are you saying all the pain I went through so far has been for nothing?†“No, it hasn’t. That was your entrance exam, remember?†“You’re kidding me.†“Totally not. Oh, and also, congratulations on passing that exam!†Emma gave me a big hug. Or rather, a squeeze. A tight squeeze. “Th—thanks.â€, I replied, deflated. “You’re welcome, sweetcheeks. From now on, the fun will only increase, now that you’re a probationary ninja.†“You’re… you’re making me a probie?†“Yep.†“Oh boy…†“Tee hee, I’m glad you’re happy too.†“That’s not…†“Well, as I said, the fun will really begin once we’re out of this mess. So let’s do that first. Here they come!†*sigh* “Aye-aye, Coach.†Challenge goals For the first week: survive, with no lasting damages. I’m on a business trip. Or whatever you’d call “get your butt kicked by a grandmaster for 9 days straight, until it’s the shape of his footâ€. For the following weeks: track everything, intensify and socialize. Track everything. Write the following into my journal every day, so I have a clear view of how I spend my time:strength training (Am/ToD)[1]martial arts (Am/ToD)wake-up timePhD application work (Am/ToD)(computer) programming (Am/ToD)TV/video games/YouTube/etc. (Am/ToD)Progress on goals #2 and 3 below.Intensify. Do the above-mentioned things (except items #6 and 7) in higher intensity. This means more reps/whatevers, or more frequent sessions, or earlier time of day, or more proactive work. Yes/no mark, on a daily basis, per item.Socialize. Comment intelligently on a single person’s thread from my accountability group, and on a single person’s thread not in my group, preferably Monks and Assassins. Optionally strike a 2min+ small talk-ish conversation with A Real Human™… you know, like, face to face, and stuff. Yes/no mark, on a daily basis. “Overachiever†mark for also managing the optional.Rationale (Not for the first week… The rationale for the first week is “they promised me cookiesâ€.) The big theme here is “step up my game.†I already do things #1—5, just mostly haphazardly. So now, I’m adding intention and difficulty. As for the “socialize†goal: I’d describe myself as “cyclically socialâ€, meaning that I have phases where I am very sociable and phases where I’m socially distant and shut off.[2] For my own taste, I’ve spent too much time in a former phase. I’d like to return to the latter. So then. Let’s get dangerous! 1amount/time of day 2Interestingly, the latter phases tend to happen when I’m involved in video game sprees, or Bachelor/Master theses. Coincidence…?
  18. Immortal words of a Ninjutsu instructor, some years ago: <brandishing a pair of Sai> "Right! Anyone who thinks they're Raphael from the Ninja Turtles can just ***k off!" My Karate Sensei likes to include some kobudo in the class. Specifically we have been working on a couple of Bo katas and he is keen to have us learn at least one Sai kata (once more of us have our own Sai). The other day I saw the trailer for the upcoming Michael Bay TMNT reboot and that got me thinking... I've always liked swords. Now I'm learning some Bo katas and have the opportunity to learn Sai katas... all that's missing is the Nunchucks and I've got the whole TMNT gang! So why not go for it? TMNT originally appeared when I was a kid so it's of my generation. I've nothing to loose by learning some (more) Sai, Nunchaku, Sword and Bo techniques/katas! Furthermore, why not make it a TMNT themed challenge? Well, I don't do Ninjutsu these days but I do often wear a bandanna with lizards or newt shapes on it (I don't know why so don't ask) so Karate Newt might be more appropriate than Ninja Turtle. (I'm also very much NOT a teenager ) Fitness: April: Attend gym for some kind of strength training at least twice a week. May: Some kind of strength training at least twice a week. Probably bodyweight & kettlebells. Probably in my garden. Cardio: Walking, sprinting, swimming, cycling... anything - just Move! Str +1, Sta +1, Dex +1 Con +1 Karate: Keep attending weekly lessons. Keep practising the basics - stances, strikes, blocks, kicks. Do my grading. Dex +1, Wis +1, Cha +1 Unarmed Kata: Keep practising Fukyugata Ichi and Ni. Keep practising Pinan Shodan through Yondan. Learn Pinan Godan. Learn first three "two person katas" (can't remember what they're called): Kumite Katas Sta +1, Dex +1, Wis +1 Weapons: Keep practising Bo Shodan. Finish learning Bo Nidan. Learn one Sai Kata. Buy or make some Nunchuks and then learn one Nunchaku Kata. Find or develop a simple sword kata. Learn it. Str +1, Dex +1, Wis +1 Bonus: Get my own pair of Sai. Attend the Friday class (further away - more costly to get to) Wis +1, +1 Cha.
  19. The Shadow Mountains Ninjas live a sheltered life far away from modern society. Many people have searched for their location, but no one has ever found it. The Shadow Mountains Ninjas are famous for having the best Ninjas in the world. Their strength are remarkable, their wisdom is infinite and their badassary know no boundaries. The elder council in town recently decided that it is time to help those in the world that want to improve their health, to master their mind and become badass Ninjas. Therefor, in the summer of 2014 they will hold a three-month camp in the art of Ninja-hood. However, the elder council realized that they must have some kind of application process so that it is only those who are really dedicated that attend the camp. They then decided the following: On may 26th the journey starts for those of you who get enrolled to the camp (it is a six day journey to get there). This camp is NOT for the weak-minded. We don´t care what your physical capabilities are, we don’t care if you can do 1 or 100 push ups, but we demand that you possess the highest form of DEDICATION, and therefor, to be eligible to enroll you have to meet the following three demands: - The camp will be held in the Shadow Mountains and we live like our ancestors always have done, like hunters and gatherers. There are no stores where you can buy sugary food or any form of processed food that will drain you of your energy. We have to know that you are capable of living like we do and therefor, we require that you for a period of 6 weeks stick 100 % to paleo or primal food. A drug test is performed when you apply, and it will show any deviation from said food, and if you don´t pass, you can´t enroll. In other words, starting April 14th, I will only eat food that is paleo (or primal since I sometimes have to eat dairy products). - The training this summer will be extremely intense, and you will break all of your plateaus and get in the best shape of your life. But, we have to know you´ve got what it takes which means you have to stick to your training program for 6 weeks straight. For me, this means going to the gym 4-6 times a week. - We want you to show your dedication in an area of your choosing. We don´t care what it is, but it has to be an activity you do at least 2-3 times/ week, to show us that you are truly dedicated. I will climb (indoor or outdoor) 3 times a week (except one week when I am on vacation and there are no climbing possibilities). We also strongly recommend you prepare your body for - Waking up early, - Meditating on a regular basis, - Self care such as trigger point therapy. We will not yet release any more information about the camp, but we assure you that it will be EPIC. // The elder council Main quest I want to attend the summer course and finish it with honors! In this first challenge I will meet the three criteria above. Side quest I want to be as prepared as I can be when I enroll the camp and I will try to wake up early, meditate and do trigger point therapy. I will keep a scoreboard where I get one point for: - Waking up 5 am or earlier - Meditating in total 20 minutes or more during a day - Doing TP-therapy for 15 minutes or more during a day The maximum points attainable are 42x3= 126, and my goal is to reach 100. I will keep track of all the above figures in an excel sheet and post it every Sunday to have some accountability. OK, I am super psyched to do this. Anybody else out there that want to join me and go to the Shadow Mountains this summer? // The Swedish Ninja
  20. A new challenge! Allow me to begin with a brief update on my life. Last time I wrote to you it was on the eve of a job interview. It was a promising position in my city's Hebrew Social and Sports Club where they have a primary school. It was an opportunity to stay doing what I love (teaching) with great benefits and a very attractive paycheck. It was almost perfect for me and I really really wanted it. I say almost because the school is far from where I live and that implied a deadly commute and a whole new routine. The good news is that I got the job =D but I had to change my whole lifestyle around this new position. My workout, my fasting, my sleep, my study habits... all affected by this new routine. I felt like I was suddenly hurtled into chaos. The fact that I'm starting this thread two days late it's proof enough that keeping up with my healthy habits it's going to be a challenge. So I decided to follow the advice of "an old hag who talks too much" from one of my favorite videogames: Flemeth from Dragon Age. "Hurtled into chaos, you fight... and the world will shake before you." The Challenge is to make sure I stay in track with my healthy habits in spite of the chaos of my new routine. Diet and Fitness Goals Uno: I will keep tracking what I eat and make sure I fast (16-8) on weekdays. Now that I am a productive member of society have a regular paycheck, I can afford healthier food, but with money also comes the possibility to buy and eat whatever I feel like. So I want to make sure I don't fall prey of my anxiety attacks and eat whatever is at hand instead of a healthy choice. Dos: I will follow my workout routine and make sure I train Ninjutsu at least twice a week. My workout routine also changed entirely. I can only workout an hour or two before bedtime and I'm usually low on willpower by then, so it's going to be a challenge to remain on track. Also, mid-challenge I'm traveling to start training for the black belt with my shihan sensei and I want to show him that I'm prepared and ready and not at all rusty and dusty. Tres: I will take care of my willpower levels and make sure I do several things through the day to refresh my mood and willpower. We already know the importance of willpower and I believe without taking care of it, I'm going to fail. So I want to make sure I use these "power-ups" to stay with energy, calmed and with a healthy mood all day. For me, it means Respect my Sleep Routine (Lights off at 10pm - Waking up at 4:00am, Brief nap sometime during the day).Keep a constant practice of yoga and meditation.Remain accountable and share my progress on Nerd Fitness.Keep a tidy, organized and clean environment. (I'm crazy like that). Life Goal Catorce! I will read my assigned readings and make sure I study at least 2 hours every day. After I've returned from the school, all I want to do is sit down and play videogames or watch TV until It's bedtime and my grades and studies are suffering. So this will be also very hard. If I accomplish these things, I can look forward to try new things and to make serious progress in my healthy lifestyle, in my job and in my studies and eventually earn the title of Champion of Kirwall. “There are men who struggle against destiny, and yet achieve only an early grave. There are men who flee destiny, only to have it swallow them whole. And there are men who embrace destiny, and do not show their fear. These are the ones that change the world forever.” ―Flemeth
  21. Hi everybody! After reading Nerd Fitness for two years, I finally took the step to also join the rebellion. I don´t know why I have waited so long, but anyway, super thrilled to be here. So, who am I? A Ninja of course, but other than that, my name is Victor and I´m a 28-year-old Swede. Since being a Ninja currently doesn´t pay the bills, I work as a project manager by day and do my Ninjastuff by night. I have been interested in health and fitness for more than 10 years and I like many different types of training; stronglifts, bodyweight workouts, climbing, running, hiking and many more. In the Nerd area, I consider myself a noob. I love series/movies with superheroes, zombies, aliens and I have played my fair share of videogames over the years, but currently I just watch TV once in a while. I am your typical all-or-nothing personality. When I eat healthy food, I ONLY eat healthy food and no sugars, bread etc. But when I fall of the wagon, I eat mostly crap, and it takes me some time to get back on track. My challenges: I currently have some troubles with my knees, and therefor can´t run, but I´m working hard with rehab and strength training and am 100 % sure I will be able to run again, but I know it will take some time. My biggest challenge though is sugar, that’s my nemesis, my Darth Vader. I have tried to quit this shit for many times, but always strike out, but now, I´m going to kick his ass and blow up his freaking death star! I hope to become a active member in the community and feel psyched to do my first challenge: http://rebellion.nerdfitness.com/index.php?/topic/47041-preparation-for-summer-camp-in-the-shadow-mountains/ // Victor
  22. I know I know drinking juice is bad. Even the "healthy" stuff like Bolthouse and Naked Juice that are supposed to be good for you are loaded with sugar and you don't get the fiber like you would if you just ate the berries and apples etc....HOWEVER, what if I say threw a handful or two of berries and a slash of almond milk or water? Would that be just as bad or would I reap the benefits? Thanks!
  23. I keep getting lazy. I've been fighting this all my life and I've been losing for most of it, but I am going to turn that around no matter how long it takes. My last challenge was a disappointment, and after it ended I stopped doing everything aside from the climbing since I at least have my roommate to keep me accountable as we climb together. It occurs to me I really need an accountabilibuddy or six in order to not suck. As much as I wanted to do this on my own, it isn't working. In accordance with the prophecy, I am going to kick my own butt into gear and I'm going to find a way to make sure I don't slip again no matter what it takes. My first target this time is the same as last time but I'm going to be serious about it. I'm going to seriously work out three times a week. This is usually going to involve climbing, but that's not enough and it really never was. Sure my muscles hurt, but not all of them and I'm generally not working up a serious sweat. I've used climbing as an excuse to ignore working out a lot of areas of my body. This changes now. If I finish climbing and I have gas left in the tank, I'll empty it. Second target is stretching, I used to stretch every single morning for about 20 minutes, this was an awesome practice and I was getting steadily more flexible. Then I stopped. I'm going to start again. If I don't stretch in the morning I will stretch after work, and I will always stretch properly after climbing, as opposed to never (I've been very bad about this.) Third target is eating, same as last time, at least 3 times a week I'll make a point of making sure I get a properly prepared meal with some protein and green vegetables in it. Preferably every day of the week, but I know I need to take baby steps, one at a time. Final target is also the same as last time since my performance was a joke. I am going to declutter all the crap out of my life that I don't need and get things neat and tidy. No more distractions. This is going to be awesome.
  24. My most recent challenge, if I'm being perfectly honest, went much worse than I expected it to. I got lazy, and I screwed up. This time I'm going to fight as hard as I can against the laziness that's dominated my life until now. In accordance with the prophecy, this time I'll get it right. Let's get right to it. Goal 1: Simple, just exercise three times per week as a minimum. These have to be workouts where I seriously work some part of my body to the limit so that I'm actually gaining something from it. If I do more than three any extras are allowed to be more leisurely but of course working harder is preferred. Potential stat gains: Variable, depending on what I focus on. I'll put 5 points on the table for this goal to be divvied up. Goal 2: Eat at least three proper dinners every week. Sandwiches don't count unless they include at least one ingredient I cooked myself (eggs don't count). The dinner has to have a decent source of protein and at least one green vegetable. Con: 3. Goal 3: Do some sort of either climbing or work out with real weights once per week. Str 2 Dex 1 Sta 1 Goal 4: This goal will once again be to declutter my life since I didn't actually do it at all last time. Weeks one and two require an hour each, the following four weeks each require two hours.Wis: 3.
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