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  1. Challenge is outlined below: status updates at the top! Progress: 5k Time to Beat: 25:25 (8:17, 8:14, 8:08, avg pace 8:12) 5k Final Time: 25:01 (8:13, 8:07, 7.47, avg pace 8:07) Week 0: SAVAGE workout (Wed - 3x30 body weight squats, 3x50 jumping jacks, 2x50 crunches+incomplete set of 14, 2x5 pull-ups, 3x20 lunges, 3x10 burpees, 3x5 pull-ups, 2x20 Russian twists) body weight workout (Mon - 5x10 plyo pushups, 5x20 body weight squats, 5x6 ring pull-ups, 4x60s plank, 3x30s hollow hold, 3x30s side plank) 3+ runs (Tue - 3.4 mi, avg pace 9:33) (Thur - 3.5 mi, avg pace 10:04) Novel submitted 500+ words daily (Mon - 475 words) (Tue - 537 words) (Wed - 570 words) (Thur - 623 words) 3 blog posts (Nice Drivers) Week 1: SAVAGE workout (Thur - 3x10 plyo push-ups, 3x30 body weight squats, 3x30s side planks each side, 3x25yd side shuffled each side, 3x40 jumping jacks, 3x30s plank, 3x30s reverse plank, 3x25yds broad jumps, 3x25yd backwards jog) body weight workout (Tue - 5x12 side-to-side push-ups, 5x20 body weight squats, 3x25yd side shuffles (each side), 3x25yd bear crawls, 10 mins jogged in between sets) 3+ runs (Mon - 3.2 mi, avg pace 8:08[!]) (Wed - 3.1 mi, avg pace 10:03) (Fri - 3.1mi, avg pace 9:38) (Sun - 5.5 mi, avg pace 9:49) Novel submitted Not this week. (But I was never planning for this week. Too much like work when I'm on vacation.) 500+ words daily (Mon - 617 words) (Tue - FAIL!) (Wed - 1019 words) (Thur - Fail!) (Fri - Fail!) (Sat - 1017 words to make up time and get back on track!) 3 blog posts (1) (2) (3) Week 2: SAVAGE workout (Sun - 52 pickup workout! 95 squats, 33 push-ups, 34 burpees, 73 crunches, 82 jumping jacks, 62 mountain climbers, 3 minutes of hollow/arch hold work, 24 pull-ups) body weight workout (Mon - 3x6 ring dips, 3x6 ring pull-ups, 3x20 squats, 3x15s tucked L-sits, 3x10 ring push-ups, 3x10 body weight ring rows) 3+ runs (Tue - 3.1 miles, who cares about pace -- I was pushing the double stroller!) (Wed - 3.1 miles, 9:53 avg pace) (Sat - 5.8 miles, 10:03 avg pace) Novel submitted Twice! 6/21 and 6/22. 500+ words daily (Mon - 719 words) (Tue - 507 words) (Wed - 773 words) (Thur - 848 words) (Fri - took the day off for wife's birthday -- wrote extra earlier to make up for it!) 3 blog posts (1) (2) (3) (4) (5) Week 3: SAVAGE workout (Sun - 2 10-minute AMRAP sets: 4x7 assisted shrimp squats each side, 3x12 side-to-side push-ups, 3x25yd bear crawl, 3x30 crunches, 4x25yd side shuffled each side, 7x5 burpees, 4x10 mountain climbers, 3x40 jumping jacks ... +2 more sets of 7 shrimp squats for the mini) body weight workout (Tue - 3x7 ring dips, 3x6+1 ring pull-ups, 3x20 squats, 3x60s hollow/arch hold, 3x10 ring push-ups, 3x10 body weight ring rows) 3+ runs (Mon - 3.4 mi, avg pace 9:46) (Wed - 3.4 mi with the stroller, WHO CARES ABOUT PACE) (Fri - 3.3 mi, avg pace 9:43) Novel submitted NOT THIS WEEK. 500+ words daily (Mon - FAIL!) (Tue - 1217 words) (Wed - FAIL!) (Thur - 623 words) (Fri - 1038 words) 3 blog posts (1) (2) (3) Week 4: SAVAGE workout (Wed - 4x10 decline diamond push-ups, 4x7 assisted shrimp squats, 4x25yd bear crawls, 4x30 crunches, 4x5 ring dips, 4x5 ring pull-ups, 4x40 jump rope, 4x10 mountain climbers) body weight workout (Mon - 5x10 decline diamond push-ups, 5x7 assisted shrimp squats, 3x7 ring dips, 3x6 ring pull-ups, 2x60s plank) 3+ runs (Tue - 3.4mi, 10:03 avg pace) (Wed - 3.3mi, 9.47 avg pace) (Sat - 3.1 mi, 8:07 avg pace) Novel submitted Twice! 7/5 and 7/7. 500+ words daily (Mon - 772) (Tue - 523) (Wed - 630) (Thur - 1128) (Fri - 785) 3 blog posts (1) (2) (3) You guys. YOU GUYS. I am so FIRED UP. Why? Because I'm going to SAVAGE RACE in September. This is a big deal for me. Obstacle races have been one of those things that I watched from afar, thinking "yeah, that's kinda cool, maybe that would be fun to do one day." Then I got into Ninja Warrior and started doing a bunch of body weight exercises and handstands and cartwheels and stuff (check my previous challenges for details on all that), and "fun one day" turned into "when I work up the nerve." Well, just a week ago, my wife got me an early father's day present: an entry to Savage Race here in Georgia. AND IT'S ON. Pav is going SAVAGE. This challenge is about shattering barriers, overcoming obstacles, and pushing my limits. A couple of years ago, I started making some changes in my life. I took up running, and it was good. I started strength exercises, and it was good. I started writing regularly, and that, too, was good. (The act of writing, that is. Whether the writing itself is good is to be determined.) I've formed habits. Good habits. Maybe even enviable habits. But I can be better. To do well at Savage Race, I'm going to have to combine my running and strength work -- something I've never done. Those two worlds have been separate, but the more I experiment in parkour, the more I realize they are ultimately linked. Savage Race will cast those bonds in iron and blood, so I need to train smarter and harder in the coming months. And in my writing, that situation has come to a head. I've talked a little bit about my writing in previous challenges, but there's no more pussyfooting around. I've been working on my novel for a year and a half, I've edited it, gotten feedback from some friends, and re-edited it again. I can piddle in the sandbox until the sun goes cold if I let myself, but somehow, this feels like the time. Maybe it's the fact that I'm signed up for Savage Race. Maybe it's just kismet. But it's time to face the biggest dragon of all: I need to send that work out into the world and see if it can fly. So. Goals. There are only two, but those goals have sub-goals which will probably get overwhelming. 1. Train Savage. I need a minimum of two strength workouts every week, but I'd like to have three. These will be body weight focused, but they might include some agility and hand-balancing as well, as I don't want to neglect that stuff. But I want to shake things up, so I've downloaded the Savage Race training plan and I intend to make use of the exercises found therein at least once a week. That's a different style of workout than I'm used to -- time/AMRAP exercises rather than a fixed number of sets/reps -- so I hope that will test me in terms of stamina as well as strength. Further, I can't neglect my runs, since the course will be 5-7 miles punctuated with obstacles. So I need to stay on the ball there. But: THIS. IS. SAVAGE. I don't want to just maintain, I want to get better. So I want to run a 5k for speed at the beginning of the challenge and another at the end, with an obvious goal of improving that time in the interim. In terms of workouts, I want three runs a week minimum, though I'd like to make that four. In short, that's: 1 SAVAGE workout weekly (timed/AMRAP exercises) at least 1 additional workout weekly 4 weekly runs An improved 5k time BRING IT. 2. Write Savage. I'm a writer -- or I'm trying to be. I've been working on my first novel for about a year and a half, and there's no putting it off any more. The book is ready to go out. Maybe not ready for publication, but ready for a person who isn't me to get eyes on it. And let's face it; if I never put myself out there, I'm never going to get published, so it's time to face down this fear. That means submitting the work. Which means, in turn, researching some agents, tuning up the query letter, and ultimately pressing "send" a few times. The fact is, I have no idea how this part works, so I'm going to set a goal of submitting my novel to four agents over the course of this challenge -- theoretically, one per week, though that's not a hard and fast schedule or anything. Further, our last mini and a number of other factors conspired to get me really psyched about my next novel, and if there's one lesson I've learned about writing, exercising, and life in general, it's that MOMENTUM MATTERS. I've just started work on a new novel, and I want to make sure I'm consistently putting in work on that project while I'm shopping the finished work. For now, I want no less than 500 words a day, five days a week -- which would give me 10,000 words written on this novel by the end of the challenge. That's more than manageable, but it's summertime and I've got big fitness goals ahead, so I'm okay giving myself a little bit of leniency here. Finally, I want to get a little more consistent on writing for my website at Accidentally Inspired. I've been way too sporadic in recent months. As I said before, MOMENTUM MATTERS. So I want to make sure I'm posting a minimum of three times per week. In short: Novel submitted to (at least) 4 agencies over the course of the challenge 500 words/day, 2500 words/week, 10,000 words by the end of the challenge 3 blog posts weekly GET SOME. I could go on. There's so much more I want to be working on, but I think with my two major goals and my seven sub-goals I will have plenty to keep me busy. That, and the coming Assassin mini. So. Game on. Lock and load.
  2. This post will be rather like my challenge: simple, focused and slightly wacky. So... Let's Get Down To Business (can't say that without adding: to defeat...the HUNS) First order of business: March starts the Whole30! So it'll be 3-4 meals a day (depending on if I workout) of meat, veggies, fruit and nuts/seeds. For me it will end up being a whole60 as I'm doing it next month also so I've got to really get into a good routine that can last me 2 months. I'll be posting a pic showing my 3 meals that day as well. My motivation for the whole30 will be it helping me drop my extra bf from winter as all my training is easier with less fluff. Also it's a huge part of what keeps me in remission -this helps me know my true current strength and endurance limits so I can train accordingly. Second order of business: Obstacle Training - Crush PR's in 6 categories (each of these will be areas I'll be tested on in May) 1) Core -Toe Touches and Planche - just trying to see what my max on these is 2) Pull - Jumping and Half Pull-ups + Chin-ups working toward Full- Pull-ups 3)Push - Uneven Push-ups and Pike/Decline Push-ups working toward handstand push-ups -Also I hate military style push-ups but I am gonna try to make myself do them since I think I might hate them cause the muscle it works is just a little different from the above variations and it means I probably need to strengthen it. 4)Squat - Intermediate Shrimp Squat working toward Advanced Shrimp Squat - Also 20"-24" Box Jumps 5)Push-Up- Burpees (Spartan Prep Work) - See how many I can do in a set amount of time and work to increase that number, 6) RUN!!!! I'll be focusing on hills and mountains more than flat areas cause Mud and Obstacle Runs do involve, ya know, running. So yeah, that's gotta happen I guess. Plus, as I've previously mentioned, escape preparedness is never a bad thing, -be it from invading aliens, nefarious villains or just an overly friendly avalanche attempting to give you a hug... Also for the competition I'll need to remember to get photographic evidence of all my training accomplishments. In view of the fact that the Whole30 will take a lot of cook time and planning I'm gonna leave it at these two things since I want to give these my all and I need this month to be April and May's foundation. I'm going to again use climbing and ice skating as rewards for this challenge, it worked really well last time so there we go. My penalty is already in place -if I don't stick with the Whole30 and hit at least some of my goals this month then there's no way I can win in May. I will give myself bonus points if I get my studying done each night since I've got TONS of continuing ed for work this year in addition to my already full study schedule. Bonus points will be explained in the next post.
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