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  1. The last challenge was primarily about 2 things; getting my squat up to what I deemed an acceptable level and setting a foundation for upper body work by getting my Row form and technique correct. I managed both of those, so for this challenge I'll be building upon that foundation and easing off the intensity of the squats. Despite being overweight for much of my life, you wouldn't be able to tell if you just looked from the waist down. Above the waist, however, I look like a sack of potatoes. Mashed potatoes. And functionally I'm not as strong as I'd like to be. And SL has kinda reinforced this (or at least made the difference more obvious) with squats taking up the majority of time and effort. With this in mind, my challenges for this month are as follows: 1a. Prioritise Upper body. Do my upper body exercises first. Hopefully this will get around the problem of running out of energy in the latter part of a session. 1b. Add 10kg to all 'none squat' lifts. Assuming that the theory above is correct and I have more energy for these lifts, I should be able to add 10kg to my Bench Press, Overhead Press, Bent-over Rows and Deadlifts. 2. Concrete on bracing. Whilst I'm pleased with my squat, I need to work on my technique, especially where my core is concerned. I'll be lowering the weight and concentrating on bracing my substantial middle section. 3. Cardio day. Once a week, do a day of cardio. I hate cardio. But I need to get rid of my substantial middle section. Once a week do something cardio-ish. Half an hour on the exercise bike, go for a walk and so on and so forth. Something. Anything. Not much, but a start. Now, watcha gonna do, Brother and/or sister, when Kong-a-Mania runs wild on you?!
  2. Br0thern and Swolemaidens, It is deemed time to partake in an epic challenge of body and mind. I have seen Br0's and Swolemaidens struggle and excel at all the glorious feats of strength like squats, deadlifts, snatch, clean and jerks just to name a few. I've also witnessed the awesomeness of the lifting Br0 with the shrugs, curls, bench press and calf raises. However, one neglected body part must be given its proper worship. The back. In light of this, I declare this month to be Rowvember. You shall go to your Iron Sanctuary and give worship by doing 10 sets of 10 1 arm rows within 10 minutes. Make sure you are doing proper 1 arm rows. This is a great example of a proper row. You are allowed to use straps. This was written with the intent you use Dumbbells, but kettlebells are allowed. If you have an idea for something else, ask for permission first for it to count. Cable rows are not allowed. As not all worshipers are at the same level of difficulty, so do the level that will challenge you. Weights in (m/f) Beginner 25lbs/ 15lbs and over +.5 str, +1 wis, +.5 con Medium 50lbs/ 30lbs and over +1 str, +1 con Hard 75lbs/45lbs and over +1 str, +1 con, +.5 sta Nightmare 100lbs/60lbs and over +2 str, +1.5 con, +.5 sta No one completed nightmare last time, but if someone is worthy. There is a secret hidden level that's so hard that it scared everyone for reals. Summary: 1-arm dumbbell row, your difficulty level, 10 reps each side, 10 sets; for time. Post your glory in this thread. This Challenge will run the entire month of November.
  3. [Important note: I'm posting now, and may be around a little for week 1, but I'm on stay-cation this week and won't officially start challenge activities until everyone else is on week 2. I'll make up for it on the break before the next challenge... probably. ^^;] Breaking news from the Goodfellow Cluster! Early this morning employees of the Ettin Conglomerate arrived for work at asteroid mining facility H414n and were surprised to find a group of heavily armed mobile frames guarding the docks. A representative for the group claimed to be acting on the collective will of laborers throughout Ettin territory who have been demanding improved wages and working conditions to no avail for several years. They stated an intent to guard the entrance to this mine against all intrusion until their demands are met, and have called on workers in other Ettin Conglomerate facilities to rise up in solidarity. While rumors of dissatisfaction within the Conglomerate have circulated since it severed ties with the Free Allied Ergotacrocies over 25 years ago, this is the first such act of open rebellion. You may recall our report last week regarding a shipment of advanced charged particle weaponry and SK-1 "Imp" mobile frames that had been reported by manufacturer Phayze Fructification, inc as "seized by pirates" during transport to the Oberon Tvier Solar Energy Collection Array. We reached out to PFi to ask if these could be those same units, and executive spokesman Destin Puck had this to say: Puck: "There is simply no way of identifying the stolen units short of examining the serial numbers etched onto the inner frame on the left underarm, and I'm certain that the thieves burned those off with a plasma welder long before selling the frames to whoever has them now. Even if these were the same units, PFi bears no responsibility for what may be done with property that's been stolen from us." More on this story as it develops, but for now let's turn to Alex for the latest on the Trundleball Quarterfinals! Alex? -- TL;DNR: Pointman - Ring Row/Bridge Progressions 4x/week GWACS - Post 2x/week to this thread + 4x/week in other threads Ground - Movement 15min 4x/week Pound - Meditate 10min 5x/week Let's get rebellious!
  4. Form check me, please! D: I feel like I'm not doing these quite right. I can't touch the weights to the ground between reps because it's like my arms aren't long enough... and if I squat lower, then I feel like my legs are doing wayyyy too much work just to keep me balanced. But the plus side is, here's my second video, all in one post. My form is definitely not good here.. is it as simple as this being too heavy? I've got the same problem as with the lighter weight in the first video, feeling like my legs are doing a whole lot of work just balancing. Am I just not used to it? Halp plz! D:
  5. So as many of you know, I've been trying to get to my first pull-up. It's been a long and arduous journey. Despite working on them pretty hard, I feel like I'm not much closer than I was before I started hammering them. I'm no expert, but I'm wondering if it's because my back is weak/I'm not activating it properly. I do notice that during my pull-up attempts (and my assisted ones), my arms get smoked but my back doesn't that bad. Then, when I was doing lat pulldowns the other day, it was the same thing. I sat straight, with a slight angle backwards, and really tried to contract like I was squeezing a pencil between my scapulae. But I still felt it in the arms more than anything else. Should I be doing seated rows (or other kinds of rows)? Or are there other cues I can use to make sure I'm recruiting my back?
  6. I have been doing inverted ring rows and all the video I've seen have people holding the rings parallel to their body. Is there any benefit / detriment to holding the perpendicular, either underhand or overhand? Thanks!
  7. Hey guys/gals! My family just received our tax return and I'm seriously considering getting a pull-up bar for our home. However, here's where I'm running into an issue... I've been recommended one that would do GREAT for pull-ups, if I could do a pull-up... but I can't... Here's my requirements: 1. I'm in a rental home with molding on the doors, but I need something that won't be bolted/screwed in place that can support my 250 lbs. 2. I need it to be able to be placed waist high, so I can do bodyweight rows. Does anyone know of anything out there that would work for me? I don't want to fall victim to any "as seen on tv" scams or get something that's going to destroy our doorways (landlords would be most displeased), but I need something that is going to challenge me more than a one arm luggage row. Any thoughts?
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