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  1. I sat out the last few challenges due to vacation/work travel/life. I've been on-again, off-again with working out and eating healthy (big surprise, I know). I was supposed to do a Spartan Sprint last weekend with coworkers but we ended up deferring due to collective injuries and conflicts (I am not injured but not prepared). I think we're going to be targeting a race in early November, which means I have 7 weeks to ACTUALLY TRAIN THIS TIME. As many races as I've done, every single I time I've undertrained...not just butterflies-at-the-starting-line-doubts, but clearly missed too many workouts to perform optimally. Long Term Goal: 25% body fat This Challenge Goal: Feel my Feels Reading one of the NF articles combined with some thoughts swirling around my crazy-brain made me realize...so many of my struggles are coming from a place of anxiety. My poor eating choices, and maybe even my various maladies (headaches and gut issues) which wear me out and drain my motivation to work out. Those moments in the store where I grab the bag of processed carbs, I'm feeling despair, hating myself for being weak, desperately wanting to feel better. I'm eating (and drinking) and watching TV, even reading, out of that desperation - needing that instant numbing and pick-me-up. I KNOW that I feel better when I work out (seriously don't know how people who don't feel the endorphin rush work out ever), but that place of feeling like I might cry or scream in groundless misery is not a place of energy. I'm simultaneously wound up and drained by anxiety. So this challenge...I'm going to try not to numb/drown the feelings. Getting back into the meditation habit and being more mindful of my choices is a start. I've been succumbing to the sucky feels - fighting back starts with understanding. As a reality check, work right now is not even particularly stressful - I'm just not handling it well. Goal #1: Move 5x/week For the endorphins. Any combination of yoga/running/walking/spartan workouts/spin/climbing. Running-crying counts too. Goal #2: Mindful shopping and eating I know how to cook reasonably balanced meals. I'm not aiming for perfect paleo, but roughly: Breakfast - protein, Lunch - protein + veg, Dinner - protein + veg + carb I'm still struggling to find a way to balanced eating, but I'm tired of that post-work feeling-like-I'm-going-to-meltdown induced stop at the grocery store for cheese or chips. I've even fallen back into my popcorn addiction (I know it can be a healthy snack, but not the way I make it, ha). The real goal is, every time I want to buy/eat something unhealthy, to: Write down what I want and what I'm feeling Take 3 deep breaths (or start a meditation through the Calm app) As needed/available, use a non-food mood booster If I still want it, have it Ideally I will only eat unhealthy things when I am in a mental space to fully enjoy them, rather than a space of please-anything-to-make-it-better. Goal #3: Wake early, Meditate daily Just do it. Bed at 9. Lights out by 10. Up at 5. THE PREPARATION I'm pre-paying for a year of Calm so I HAVE to use it to get my money's worth. I will buy the yoga pass with gift cards, and pre-book my classes for the whole challenge Stock the fridge with healthy easy staples: Steamfresh veggies, deli meat, eggs Make a list of mood-boosters that are not food/alcohol Make a list of healthy quick meals/snacks and post it in the kitchen Give fiance $50, and if I miss a workout it gets donated to Trump's 2020 campaign *shudder*. If I hit all my workouts I'll buy new running shoes. THE REASONS JULY 2018 WEDDING!!! I bought my dress and even though I love it, I don't love how my upper arms look right now. Gotta work on those guns. Christmas in Spain - For one this is with my skinny sisters and mom and I'm sick and tired of being the heavy one in the pictures. I want to be able to indulge (TAPAS AND WINE) without feeling like I'm being judged by my mom, looking at me and thinking "this is why you're overweight". I wore holes in my size 10 jeans, and instead of buying new ones I squeezed into my size 8's. Since gaining weight again (142-->152lb) they are tight. I'm not buying bigger jeans. Spartan Sprint in November? My coworker is trying to talk me into doing a Spartan Trifecta next year. But based on my Sprint training track record I'm not ready to commit. But #1 is wanting to feel better all the time. Psst this is my wedding dress: Obviously this is not me. But the flower pattern in the fabric shimmers. Also it's sooooo comfy.
  2. Main Goal This is it. At the end of this challenge, I'll be traveling to Blue Mountain, Ontario, 12 October to 15 October for the 2017 OCR World Championships. I qualified as an Age Group competitor during the Spartan Sprint in Illinois in June, and will be competing in Saturday's 15k Standard Course race in the 50-and-over Age Group. I spent almost a full year building toward this race, but like in years past, I am coming into the fall season at less than my peak. Unlike previous years, however, my issues are not due to injury, but to my now-constant running companion, knee pain of varying intensity due to psoriatic arthritis. I'm coming to grips with this development, and learning when to be smart and back off, and when to push through. First, according to my doctor, the best thing I can be doing is moderate exercise. Now, he and I have a differing opinion on what constitutes "moderate," but that's a different argument. Second, I almost never experience pain while I'm exercising (especially if I'm smart and use KT tape on my knees). Pain comes later, so what I'm really dealing with is post-activity pain management. Knowing those things, and knowing that I now have five weeks until I step into the gate, here's my challenge: Goal: Run so that I don't finish last I've used my knee pain for a crutch for a good two months now, and either I need to come to grips with finishing dead last at Worlds and potentially being pulled from the course as a DNF, or I have to start running with intent. I have five weeks to build up some proficiency here, and I'm not starting from scratch. Goal: Run a minimum of four days per week. Must include a long run (7+ miles) on the weekend. Goal: Work Out so I don't lose my grip This is a World Championship course. They are bringing in signature obstacles from literally all over the world (Dragon's Back, Urban Sky, others I won't know about until they are confirmed) that will include at least one long, miserable uphill carry. Last year's race included a half-mile Wreck Bag carry up and down a Black Diamond run and the US OCR Championships at the beginning of this month had a Yoke Carry that people said was a quarter mile of misery. I need to keep up my strength. There will also be a good five or six rigs. I'm pretty proficient at rings and bars and whatnot but vertical grips get me. I've got five weeks to fix the fail here. I haven't abandoned my Grease the Groove pull-up work, but I need to modify it to include towel pull-ups: Goal: Strength Training Classes 2x per week. This includes both weight training and boot camp. Goal: 16 pull-ups per day, at least 8 with the towel Goal: Eat so that I look good in my jersey This may sound ridiculous and vain, but I'm really worried about this. I ordered one of the USA team jerseys from Legendborne, because while I plan on being able to compete in this sport for a long time, age and arthritis are catching up with me and who knows where the event will be held next year, whether I will qualify, or whether my body will be physically able to handle it. So I dove in and ordered one of these. All reports say that they fit tighter than my North Star Spartans jersey, and I have two of those and my GF doesn't prefer my tight-fit style. Legendborne doesn't have a loose-fit option, so I'm going to get something that fits tight like the above, only it won't come with the pre-sculpted six-pack as shown in the image above. My jersey will be here before the start of this challenge and I'm worried it's going to fit like a sausage casing. I'd be completely screwed, but I know what works for me as far as macros and weight loss, and I will be focusing on cutting weight over the next five weeks in order to meet my goal of not looking like I'm going to burst the seams on this thing: Goal: Be at or under my macro goals every day. Goal: Be accountable and Don't Give Up This challenge will be bracketed by Rugged Maniac on the Saturday of Week Zero and end with OCRWC on Saturday of Week Four. I have to stay accountable or I will not meet my goals for this year. This means no disappearing from the boards here. Y'all can't hold me accountable if I ghost out of here. Especially since my challenge recap should conclude with me holding one of these: It won't be gold as that's a podium place... but I want mine. Five Weeks of No Excuses.
  3. Even though I feel like I'm consistently bagging out on week 4 of the challenges, I've been challenging STRONG. the last couple of challenges I did so great! I hit goals, pretty much! I did the things, all of them! I kept doing the things! BUT.... after months or years or whatever I don't even know of just running and doing martial arts (OK IT'S A LOT OF RUNNING AND A LOT OF MARTIAL ARTS,) I need to mix things up. FALL is for FIGURING IT OUT. WHAT *IS* NEXT, DUDES? I don't know. that's kind of the point. But I can tell you that I did some bodyweight squats (somewhere between 30 and 100) in boxing on Sat. at the dojo and it wrecked my legs big time. I thought I wasn't getting DOMS because I was so super fit! NOPE, I am not getting DOMS because I AM NOT CHALLENGING MYSELF. so here's to challenging challenges. GOAL 1. Do Bodyweight Workouts. Go back to the academy, or pick a darebee exercise, and do it 2x a week. GOAL 2. Plan for next things. it's fall, it's dark in the morning, I don't want to get up and run in the dark. Get a schedule together and figure out if I'm going to start lifting weights or what. Can i fit in eskrima lessons on sundays? can I find 2 days to do heavy lifting (such as I am able to do) at the dojo while my husband is in school? NOTE ALSO that I am committed to running until 10/1, because there's a 10K I kinda want to do then. aaaaaand I still am going to be doing tkd as much as possible. GOAL 3. for real, work on the house. sweep the floor every week work with Fourteen to get his room straightened out . work with husband to get OUR room straightened out. work on the blue room which is currently a big disaster area and needs to be Eighteen's room when he comes home from college for break. work on the attic, which is rapidly returning to big disaster area from carefully cleaned and beautified new space and I just can't allow that to happen!. I don't have to do any of these things all the time (except maybe sweeping the floor) but I do have to plan these things in. here we go, fall! I got this!
  4. Main Quest: Reduce Mile Time and Decrease Weight/Body Measurements GOAL ONE: Veronica Lodge Run 3 days a week, any distance 1 mile or more. Veronica certainly has the moves. And I want to keep on moving. GOAL TWO: Kevin Keller Keep lifting. Kettlebells 3 times a week Kevin aptly notices that over the summer, Archie may have gotten a little bit of muscle. Maybe if I keep lifting, someone will exclaim “Kat got HOT!” at me out the window of Pop’s… GOAL THREE: Jughead Jones Track calories and macros - stay within a 4% variance with macros of 30% fat and protein, 40% carbs 5 out of 7 days a week. It’s about balance, right? We can’t all stuff our faces with burgers like Jughead and remain metabolically sound. GOAL FOUR: Cheryl Blossom Stretch hip, legs, and shoulders for 15 minutes twice a week. Cheryl is fantastic as stretching the truth and manipulation, which is why she’s the mascot for my stretching goal. SIDE QUEST: Archie Andrews Practice guitar 30 minutes a week. Archie chases his dream of being a musician, no matter what. He’s my role model for this goal. I miss it; and I need more time doing what I love. STRETCH GOAL: Betty Cooper Drink 1,600 ounces of water during this challenge Betty is the picture of responsibility and responsible adults drink their water.
  5. Last time I tried a complicated points based challenge and I struggled to keep up with it. So I'm keeping this challenge nice and simple, with a bit of stupid thrown in for good measure. The next few weeks are going to be a little crazy, with a few races and two weekends away. So I've worked out the amount of runs and strength workouts I can realistically do throughout the next 5 weeks. Runs: 19 This includes all races I'm running, except one OCR that I'm doing while I'm away, as it's just a 5km inflatable obstacle course that we're doing for my soon to be sister-in-laws hen weekend and there won't be that much running involved. The first weekend away I'll only be missing one long run but the second I'll be missing one 3 mile run and one long run. The bad thing is, that long run is the last one before my half marathon! Eeek! Strength: 10 This averages about 2 sessions a week. That's a little less than I'd like but it's probably all I'll fit in with everything else going on. I'll be doing mostly on bodyweight workouts and I'm going to focus on pull ups and core strength. Updates: 23 I suck at updating, especially over the weekend so I'm adding this in too. I'll also make sure when I update I check other people's challenges and comment as I've not been great at keeping up with people recently. I'm jumping straight in and starting this challenge today. Lets get stupid!
  6. Took a bit of a break, and now I'm back with a slightly different focus. I actually think this is going to be a difficult challenge for me, since I'm focusing more on making and breaking habits, which is a type of goal I'm notoriously terrible at. I'm pretty settled in my routine of Crossfit 3x/week, and am doing fairly well at meeting my numbers for ETP, so, while I will likely report on these, they won't be specific goals (some of my goals will be related, though). I will have 1 workout-related goal, related to running, which is also something I'm notoriously terrible at doing (consistently). I'll start all this officially on the 18th (I like my weeks to run Monday-Sunday), but for Zero Week I'll be doing my best to start sticking to these habits (it's going to be a process, so I'll need the practice). I'm debating on if I want to have a reward for being perfect, I like the idea to give me a bit of extra motivation, but I don't know what the reward would be... Breaking Bad (Habits) When I get home from work/the gym, it's very easy for me to eat, then laze in bed for the rest of the evening with the TV on (only sort of watching it) and messing around on the internet. I'm usually fairly exhausted, both physically and mentally, and this is the habit I've fallen into and the one that leads to me not being successful at making new ones. It's just so easy to laze then sleep, and it's not so much that I forget to do the other things I want to do, but that I'm distracted and by the time I think of it it's bed time. I always say I'll do it tomorrow but then the pattern repeats. So, first new rule: the TV can be on, but only while I'm doing something productive (ie. one of the following habits). Second new rule: no internet until I've completed my habits for the day. This means I might not be updating here daily, but I'll do my best. This one will be the key to success for all the others, and probably the hardest of the bunch. New Habit #1 ~ Physio and Stretching/Mobility This is a goal of mine almost every time I make a challenge, and I almost never fail to fail it. I've had ongoing hip issues and have not been dedicated with the physio assigned to me to help fix them, and so can't really judge if it's helping or not. And every time I feel like I'm getting in a good exercise groove, something gets tweaked and I have to take a week off to let it heal, and it's never serious, but it sets me back, more mentally than anything. Daily physio and a maintenance routine will help me keep up with other habits (like running), as it will hopefully remove any excuse to not do it (such as minor injuries and general aches and pains). And waiting until the end of the day when I work the late shift is not an option, at least for the physio aspect, I have plenty of time in the morning. New Habit #2 ~ Meal Prep I sometimes do ok with this, and sometimes not. I've found that I really need to meal prep 2x/week, doing it all on the weekend isn't viable (or rather, doing a whole week at one time isn't viable, things get boring and/or funky by the end of the week and it makes it easy to go off plan). The easiest days to do this are Wednesdays after the gym, and one of the weekend days (or spread it across both). Things I want to focus on are finding/creating dressings and sauces that aren't overly fatty but are very tasty, to liven up my chicken and rice (suggestions welcome), and incorporating more variety into my diet (specifically on the fruit and vegetable front). I also need to get better are packing meals the night before, so I don't have to rush as much in the morning. New Habit #3 ~ Logging Things I have a fitness log to fill out for my police application, and it's easy for me to skip it for a few days then fill in a bunch of days at a time. As long as this is only a few days, it's not that big a deal, but it's better if I log it daily. I log my food in MFP, and am doing fine with that, but it's infinitely easier if I pre-log my day. Having everything logged in ahead of time helps keeps me on track and avoid temptation, and will help with my goal of more variety, since I don't have to try to wing it and hope it fits. So I'll take some time before bed to plan out my day, and make sure I've got at least 1 fruit and/or vegetable in every meal. I should probably log my habits (apart from updating here), even if just with a check mark, to help me keep on track with them. I haven't decided how I want to do that, but I might just make a chart and stick it in my OPP fitness log, which will hopefully remind me to log both things daily. New Habit #4 ~ Sleepy Time Another goal that's perpetually in my challenges and which I perpetually am bad at. Going to bed on time and getting up with the alarm. The former is usually ok most of the time, the later not so much. Getting up on time will be a big one seeing as I now work 3/5 days a week at 8am, and have to have enough time to get ready in the morning. I'm hoping some of the meal prep stuff will help here too, since the more I get done the night before, the less I have to do in my sleep-deprived state in the morning. Workout Goal ~ Running My work schedule is now amenable to doing a workout every day Monday-Friday, so I will do so as much as possible. I now have two 1-9 on-call shifts (in the past one of my on-call shifts was 10-6 which pretty much killed my entire day), so the mornings of those days will be run days (unless I need to schedule an appointment). One of those days I will do the beep test at my gym, and the other I will do a hard 2.5k (1.5mi, which is part of fitness testing at one point). I will continue to do a 'long' run on weekends, keeping it at 5k until my hip starts to behave itself better (hopefully Habit #1 will help with that), then start working up to 10k. Workout Goal ~ Pushups I need to increase my pushup numbers for future police-related testing, so I'm going to start a 100 Pushup program (specifically this one), which will be tentatively done on the same days as I go to crossfit, so Monday-Wednesday-Friday. I haven't decided what to do if I do pushup in that day's workout, but I'll play that by ear depending on the number I do.
  7. Overview / Motivation: I'm still riding my high from completing my first Spartan Sprint a couple of weekends ago and I am hungry for more! My goal for this challenge and going forward is to maintain a balance of cardio fitness with strength in preparation for my 2018 run at a Spartan Trifecta. It's been a long time since I trained for something more than my general health and wellness, and I want to nurture the hunger and drive that resulted from the Sprint. Looking forward to hitting the weights again and keeping my burpee skills and running at a strong level. Main Quest: Maintain my fitness level form the Spartan Sprint and build more strength Side Quests: Average 6 Miles of Running / Week Points Potential: STA+3 Grading A= Average > 90% B= Average > 80% C= Average > 70% D= Average > 60% F= Average < 60% Average 180 Burpees / Week Points Potential: DEX+4 Grading: A= Average > 90% B= Average > 80% C= Average > 70% D= Average > 60% F= Average < 60% Average 3 Weight Training Workouts / Week Points Potential: STR+5 Grading A= Average > 90% B= Average > 80% C= Average > 70% D= Average > 60% F= Average < 60% Life Quest: Read the first 10 Chapters of Essentials of Strength Training and Conditioning Points Potential: WIS+3 Grading A= Average > 90% B= Average > 80% C= Average > 70% D= Average > 60% F= Average < 60%
  8. Law school is everything I hoped it would be and I love it but... it's a lot of work. WHO KNEW??? Anyhow - going to keep this challenge short, sweet, and to the point because I still have a legal memo to write and contracts to read tonight. Maybe more flare will go into it later, but... who knows. Quick update on what I've been doing: Nothing. No working out, no watching my eating, nada. All studying, sleeping, and trying to settle back in to the student life. Goals: 1) Walk the doggo every day. (Sidenote - I live with my pupper again!) 2) Get 3 workouts in a week. Doesn't matter how long/what they are/what they achieve. Just. Do. It. 3) Drink all the water. 4) Plan meals out and eat vegetables maybe? Somehow I went from eating a ton of veggies everyday to not knowing when my last one was (kidding - I ate a whole stuffed pepper yesterday ). That's it. Short, sweet, simple, accomplishable.
  9. With my latest HalfMarathon happening on October 15th the title works for me. So let's talk about the race shall we? First ... it will be SCENIC! As you can see from the route map we'll be running along some rather nice scenic sections of SF ... well not the start/finish, but once we get to the Painted Ladies, Panhandle, Golden Gate Park, and the Marina for sure. Oh did you see the HILLS! We start off with a NASTY hill - as you can see below. Man ... miles 1 to 3, 6 to 7, and 11 to 12 are gonna be tough! So we keep working through the Hal Higdon's Intermediate 1 Half Training
  10. I'm excited to be back after a taking some time off. I am happy to report I am settled into my new apartment complete with internet!! Still adjusting to my new routine and living alone (with the furry beastie of course). I recently went back to work after the having the summer off so I really am feeling my life changes...not in a bad way...but not always easy...to be expected. Seems like perfect timing for a new challenge (even some of the goals will seem very familiar). This challenge is all about consistency and routine with diet and exercise. And some running. Because running! I have finally reached my feel good about myself weight. I admit that this is partly because of my breakup and not having an appetite. Mostly it is because of Crossfit, running and hard work. SO my first goal is to maintain my weight. There are a few challenges other than my love of all things sweet and lack of willpower. First is going back to work. Going back to work is tricky because I have a very rigid schedule that makes eating when hungry difficult. I get lunch at noon, hungry or not. There is also ALWAYS candy available, often times snacks, and the dining hall. I am used to this and it is just a matter of getting back into the swing of things. A new challenge I am facing now that I am single for the first time in a very long time is that I have been eating out and drinking more than I'm used to. This usually happens in conjunction with socializing so it's good for me in some respects. My maintenance plan is diet and exercise...and a few general life goals. DIET 1. Log all food and drink into MFP. Try to stay within the calorie limits, not going to beat myself up for going over if it involves being social and going out with friends. If I am going over because I decide to eat a bag of chips for dinner, self flagellation totally acceptable. 2. Don't eat candy unless at the movies. It is acceptable for me to eat candy when watching a DVD only 2x this challenge (because I don't go to the movies a lot). 3. Plan and prep meals including lunch. EXERCISE 1. Make it to 3 crossfit classes a week. It is expensive, but I love it. I can only justify spending the money if I go 3x/week. My schedule will make this challenging but there are 2 classes during the week I can easily make and 2 on the weekends. The challenge will be to not get stuck at home after taking care of the dog. I get home at 6ish and class is at 7:30. 2. Run at least once a week, preferably a long run (4+) miles but any miles will do. I struggle with making time for both gym and running. I have 2 5ks coming up in October so I need to keep running. I am also considering running in costume (both are Halloween races) but I need some good ideas for running friendly costumes. LIFE 1. Domestic rangering...do it. Keep to my daily and weekly goals (won't bore you with the specifics unless you really want to know) 2. Don't isolate. It will be much easier for me to isolate now that I am working and have limited time. I need to stay connected to people. 3. Work on Epic Quest for Closure (that sounds super self-help-ish but I can't think of a better name right now). Basically I have a list of things I would like to do now that I am single like...reconnect with interests, try new things, do some things that I have always wanted to do...etc. That's it for now. Happy to be back and in much better space than I was for my last few challenges. I am going to try to get following my Rangers today...
  11. Nutrition This seems wrong. I feel like somehow the cart got in front of the horse? Or maybe on top? I need to get a plan in place for my meals and I need work my plan. I don’t feel like I’ve developed any bad habits, but I’m not actively controlling what I’m doing anymore either. Eating out of habit is how you get into bad habits, plus it’s kinda boring. I need to re-evaluate how many calories I’m eating and make sure I’m getting enough. On 9/7 I woke up feeling awful and stayed that way until dinner the next night. I can’t help but wonder if it was a lack of protein from eating a pescetarian lunch all week (2 servings of tuna and 3.5 servings of chick peas spread across 5 days). Exercise I got a little out of habit. The past few weeks I’ve gotten back into a weightlifting habit, but not really back on my running. I also want my Saturday long runs back. Half marathon or bust! I want to get to the gym and lift 5 days a week (taking some fiddling with the new commute) and run at least 4 days a week. Music I have been trying to re-learn/learn guitar over the past month or two. I’ve picked up a few chords but I’m stuck with mostly the old songs and basic campfire strumming. All I ever knew was some basic songs on acoustic and I don’t want to be stuck in the same boring rut. This challenge I want to work on music theory and scales which means reading my theory book and practicing my scales at least 3 times a week. In upcoming challenges I’m going to start fiddling with different styles of music to see what I like playing and what sticks. Spanish I’ve been working on this for a while. I try to do duolingo daily (I love the new bot upgrade!). I want to try and get into some kind of Spanish media. I’ve tried a few news podcasts and flipping on the Spanish language channel, but I can’t get into something. I need to find a castellan anime studio or a Chilean movie studio or a Colombian youtube channel or something. Suggestions welcome. Possibly encouraged. Maybe desperately needed. My ideal week: Mon: Lift, Run Tue: Lift, Guitar Wed: Lift, Run Thur: Lift, Run, Meal Plan Fri: Lift, Guitar Sat: Long Run, Nap, Guitar, Shopping Sunday: Church, Food Prep, Spanish Something or Other
  12. What a difference a couple key changes in my life is making! I'm still having tough days or moments emotionally, but regular sleep, exercise, the new work schedule, and cutting out alcohol are all working together to put me in a better state to handle those difficult times. I'm feeling good about this next challenge. Need to do some thinking about how I'll structure it, but my overall focus for September and the start of October is cutting weight as I train for this Spartan Sprint at the start of November. I think fitting into a pair of size 8 jeans I've had tucked away in my drawer is a good metric for my progress (with the added reward of having a new pair of pants going into the fall). I can currently squeeze myself into them, but the goal is for them to fit comfortably. Pictures would probably be a good way to document progress. I'll take a start picture going into the challenge, maybe a midway one(?), and then one at the end. *fingers crossed* This will give me a little extra push when my motivation is waning.
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