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  1. Wonder Woman Says ... Enough! Time to get my Hype back The Ranger Chaplain and several of the Ranger leadership decided to hunt down the Hype stealing thief. I've decided to join on this mission as the villains Lethargy and Holiday-Mode wants to take over my world. That cannot be allowed! There are only 7 weeks left till the Muddy Princess, and this princess has to be strong enough to face the music... mud-style. That will be the epic showdown between Wonder Woman, Lethargy and Holiday-Mode. I'm taking it a bit easier over 25-26 Dec. but then it's full steam ahead then it's week 0 build up, and THEN full steam ahead. MORNING ROUTINE: Get up at 5am - make coffee. Not going to tick off (To exercise I automatically have to be up at 5am) One of three short sets of exercises, every weekday morning (at least 1 of each every week - min.15x / max.25x) Bible study/Prayers every morning. Just to keep myself accountable. PRIZE: T-shirt to do Muddy Princess in. Can't have black, because markers won't show. It will have to be a light-ish colour. ADMIN: KEEP TRACK OF- Measurements: Eish, the numbers have climbed during the last couple of months. Just for admin/info though- Weight: 87kg Arm L: 32.5cm Arm R: 32.5cm Middle: 87cm Hips: 115cm Thigh L: 65.5cm Thigh R: 65.5cm Finances: 4 months/5 weeks !GET IT DONE! Sept Oct Nov Dec PRIZE: Fabric markers to draw on the t-shirts for the boys and I. Ok, I've already ordered these, BUT I can adapt that I'm not allowed to draw my own t-shirt if I haven't completed finances. HEALTH: Water/Tea: 0.5p for each 500ml water, or mug of tea. Min. 35p Max.50p Sleep: In bed by 22h00. Lights out by 22h15 IF lights out by 22h00, then ...??? PRIZE: ??? OTHER TRAINING: Self Defense with the boys (Mondays): try for 4x (doing with both boys) Cardio/Walk (Tuesday and Thursday afternoons): min.4x max.8x (doing with Adam) Strength (Saturday afternoon): just to keep my deadlifts going. Try for 4x PRIZE: ??? HYPE! - mini challenge: This will be one of 5 feats. It really depends on whether the specific feat happens during school holidays or not. Before the boys and I start with school again (extra murals start with a lot of driving around to get them places during the afternoon), I will have more time, and can fit more things in. I'm not really sure how to do this, actually. Is it only one session of that feat extra for the week? Am I supposed to try and get 4x 15min. sessions of the feat in during the week, on top of my other training? Am I just supposed to try and do extra on something/feat that I'm already doing? Hopefully final update! Once a week, do: Strength: Deadlifts see how much I can lift (31kg with bar weight included is my current top) Speed: Running from the monkeys are always an option, otherwise I'll see how many jumps I can do in 5min. with the jumping rope. Distance: Walking. See how far I can walk in 30min. +- 2.5 to 3km to beat. Combat: Play Star Wars on Kinect. That is a serious cardio workout! Rangerly/Outdoors: Walk in the Nature reserve if possible. This won't be fast or for distance, as I'll be walking with my boys. We stop often to discuss whatever we see, so the objective will be to just get out of the house and into nature with this one.
  2. The Battle of Wonder Woman & her Mighty Cats In Africa lives a woman, with short dark hair, a magic lasso, and an affinity to cats. Big cats, small cats, wild, tame; cats in many forms. This is Wonder Woman! She has been battling Dr. Stressor and Prof. De-Energizer for many a challenge, but in the last one, they drove her to her knees in an epic mental battle. They cut off her long locks which was the power to her physical strength. However, before they could deal a final death blow, her strong, tenacious, not-up-to-hype Super Friends rushed in to save her, and spirit her away to Africa. Her land of birth. Her stronghold where she can gather the tattered remains of her energy shield and strength, stand up and fight again. With her mighty lions by her side, she can face her two formidable foes. Not to win an epic all out battle, but to beat them back, slash them down little by little each and every day. To do this she has to get sound sleep, build her strength through various exercises, and each and every morning revel in the splendour and tranquility that is an African sunrise. No way around, only up and through. Did you know? I received this topic via email and of course it peaked my interests. So I thought why not a cat-themed challenge. I'm not going to score myself for a win or loose, I'm just going to try and equal, but preferably beat my last challenge's results. I realised that if I skipped this challenge, chances are very good that I won't be able to get back up and go on. So I'm here. Touch wood, but I'm not seeming to struggle with food or snacks at the moment, but definitely with exercises and routines. My energy is low, physically and mentally, but if I don't get back into routine, especially to train, then I can't get my energy levels up and my stress levels down. My own little lion, who has fought his way into our hearts, and terrorises the birds (and dogs, and neighbour's cat) in our garden every day. Stampy Cat, the night he sneaked into our house. He was +-4months old. Stampy Cat, almost 2yrs old and yes, he (almost) rules the roost. --------------------------------------------------- 00 --------------------------------------------------- MORNING ROUTINE: Up at 5h00/5h05 - 11 points/days to equal Bible Study - 20 points/days to equal Morning exercises: either routine 1 or 2 - 11 points/days to equal EXERCISES: Playball is finishing end of November. I was used to walking around the field while Rocco played. Now I'm going to have to make the effort to get up, go out and walk. Main focus is on Self Defense, Walking on a Tuesday OR Thursday, Strength training. So at least 3x a week. In between I have to get to gardening, which are sometimes a low impact exercise, and at other times a lot of strength training. WATER: 1/2 point for each 500ml bottle of water/juice/milk (no caffeine or alcohol) or mug of tea (herbal/rooibos). I almost never have juice, milk, milkshake, cooldrink, alcohol, etc. Main drinks are water, coffee, rooibos. So if I do have something else, which does not contain alcohol or caffeine, then it will count. 35 points to equal. READING: I am lagging behind on the two books that I'm reading. Dropped away totally sometime during the last challenge. I would like to read at least two chapters of each a week, but I should preferably get a move on now. I'm not doing myself any favours by not finishing this. NEW (sort of) Devotional: Spiritual Warfare Survival: Stop Walking on Eggshells SLEEP: I did really well by end of last challenge. In bed on time for more nights than those I went to bed late. I don't want to loose the momentum, but I realised due to my stress levels, I need more sleep. If in bed by 21h45, and lights out by 22h00 then 1 point/day; 23 points/days to equal If in bed and lights out before 21h45 then +1 All cat images welcome...
  3. Not so much Try Everything as I Won't Give Up, I Won't Give In... I Want To Try Everything, Even Though I Could Fail I still mess up but I'll just start again I keep falling down I keep on hitting the ground I always get up now to see what's next Health Water: At least 2x 500ml a day. Rooibos also counts as it doesn't contain caffeine. I'm actually drinking less coffee too. Sleep: Go to bed at 21h30, latest 22h00. (5min. leeway) I get up at 5h30, put the coffee on, pour it by 6h00, do Bible study, up and out of bed by 6h30. From now on I have to be out of bed by 6h15! (5min. leeway) 15min alone time somewhere during the day - just to breathe - as I can manage. Not compulsory to win the day. 23/28 days = 78% full prize R50 towards my prize I won’t give up, no I won’t give in Till I reach the end And then I’ll start again No I won't leave Gardening: I drew up a list of gardening jobs that still need to be done. I need to do at least one of the following once a week (Wednesday and/or Friday and/or Saturday): Cut and plant aloes Fill trenches Other gardening as needed Water plants (buckets/gray water) 4/8 days = 50% half prize; 6/8 days = 75% full prize R150 towards my prize Look how far you've come You filled your heart with love Baby you've done enough take a deep breath Don't beat yourself up Don't need to run so fast Sometimes we come last but we did our best Self Defense: Do some of the following, and work up to include the whole list in the end. Might take more than one challenge. Adam said he'll join me. (Monday) Joint Circles (every time) Jumping Jacks OR Burpees (every time) Aikido Steps (every time) Block Up/Down Palm to Nose Knee Strike Elbow Backwards Hammer to Ears Straight Punch 2/4 days = 50% half prize; 3/4 days = 75% full prize R150 towards my prize I wanna try everything I wanna try even though I could fail I won’t give up, no I won’t give in Till I reach the end To Do's: June Finances; July Finances; Serenity Roadworthy Test and Registration; Sassa Renewal; Add: Finalise Will; Mother's Day Prize Treat; Proof Reading; Home School History Project; Add: Paint trampoline frame; 6x done = full prize; R100 towards my prize Current Schedule: Monday: Adam and I Home Self Defense Tuesday: Rocco Playball - Adam, mom, I Walk | Rocco Dance Wednesday: Gardening Thursday: Rocco Soccer - I Walk Friday: Maybe Gardening | 1x Nature Club Otherwise Rest Day Satuday: Hopefully Gardening | 1x Walk @ Field Guide Course Sunday: Maybe Gardening Otherwise Rest Day PRIZES: Saw these most beautiful statues that a man makes, at the Farmer's Market. They are made from all kinds of scrap metal, broken tools and even spark plugs! They are pretty expensive though. Each category has its goals to achieve for the prize. This is not one of his, but it was something similar. He had all kinds of insects, birds, robots, airplanes, animals... I loved the imagination, creativeness and ingenuity that went into the creations.
  4. From Muddy Princess to Raising Superheroes... ok, I've always been trying to raise my two superheroes. This challenge I'm just (again) putting a conscious effort into it, specifically about health and fitness. I scandalously borrowed the title idea for this challenge from Banting's children's recipe book: Raising Superheroes. I'll be using some recipes from this book as well. Apparently I have a cape somewhere... While raising the next generation of superheroes I need to take care of myself as well. So although I'll be focusing on what The Boys are eating, drinking and doing in the background, here I'll mostly note my own feats of heroism w.r.t. health, exercise and sleep, to be the best Superhero mom I can be. Who am I kidding? I can't help but chat to my Rebel friends about all that is life. Health: Water & Rooibos: At least one bottle of water and/or some Rooibos. Coffee: No more than 3x mugs per day. Healthy Lunch: Yes/No. Breakfast and Dinner are mostly sorted, but lunch can be a bit much on the nerves especially if we are busy and The Boys are Hungry! Have lunch prepped and ready to take-and-go. Exercise: Only one morning with organised sport, which Youngest will take part in. Super Mom will have to save the day by getting them fit and strong! Mondays: BW Strength @ Home with The Boys. A walk during the afternoon would be an extra (not compulsory). Tuesdays: Youngest @ Playball; Oldest and SuperMom Walk; SuperMom and FriendC Walk. Wednesdays: Dance with Youngest +- 30min session. Thursdays: Self Defense with The Boys. Following our friendly neighbourhood Spiderman's programme. Thursday Rehashed: XBox Kinect game or OFF Fridays: BW Strength @ Home without The Boys. This is when I pull the irons out. Sleep: Every superhero has "kryptonite" and mine is lack of sleep. I must try and get at least 7hrs sleep in every night. Evening routine: 20h00 Boys shower. Then Oldest tells Youngest some bedtime stories. I tidy the kitchen, take out meat for next day to defrost, etc. etc. I shower. Say final good night. Lights off. 21h00 I must go to bed! 21h30 LATEST! EDIT: It keeps throwing out my images! What evil super villainy is this?
  5. Alright! New challenge! I feel like I should give some kind of update about how my life is going. I became a little unresponsive during the last challenge. Not because I'm not interested, I've just been so busy! I've gotten my license and am now driving every chance I get. Work is pretty spotty, though, due to me not having my own vehicle. I've got like a million projects going on- I've suddenly decided I'm interested in psychology, I'm writing a few stories, I've started this pixel art thing. Family is doing pretty well, so no news there. CHALLENGE: FEB 1 - FEB 26 MAIN QUEST: GOAL 1 - Eat at least ONE low-carb meal every day. GOAL 2 - Get basic parkour workout up to 4x12 (workout 2x a week) GOAL 3 - Stop drinking sugar (over the course of this challenge, completely phase sugary drinks out of my every day diet) LIFE QUEST - Get my own car So this time around I decided to try picking up a new skill- self-defense. I'd love to take some kind of martial arts class, but that's out of the question until I get my own car. I just live too freaking far away from everything. I'm continuing with my progress with the parkour basic workout, which consists of squats, push ups, pullups, and leglifts. I decided I want to stop drinking sugary drinks all the freaking time because it makes me feel like I'm putting my body through something bad, and also because I want to decrease my body fat percentage from %38 down to %30. I'm going to get my own car this month so I can finally pick up more work and actually go out and do things during the day while my parents aren't home. Gosh, sorry if this topic is such a mess! I'm really having trouble organizing my thoughts on account of all these irons I've got in the fire.
  6. Lately, the term “aliveness†and “practical self defense†have been thrown out there in regards to martial arts and styles. I wanted to put some meandering thoughts out there and see what others thought on the subject. There are multiple reasons for practicing the martial arts. Some choose it as a hobby, for fitness, for sport or possibly for self defense. I’m going to focus the thoughts on Self Defense for this lengthy piece. When I break self defense training down into two core components, I get the actual movements or techniques and also what I refer to as the mental toughness, or killer instinct. It is in a way what aliveness training gives you, the mental fortitude to accept ahead of time that you are willing to do violence on another if necessary. Many schools are good at the techniques, but maybe not so good at the mental toughness. Many places do a good job of the mental toughness, but perhaps are limited in their curriculum. Note the basic punnett square below: Like a good street fighter without training, you can do well enough with just the mental toughness. Similarly, a person with good training and technique, will do well enough, when push comes to shove even without a ton of mental toughness training. I think it is obvious that your preference should be a school that has a complete curriculum of solid techniques, as well as providing the necessary mental training necessary. Many people poo poo traditional martial arts as being non-relevant for self defense, and I can see where they are coming from. Many schools started to focus so much on the kids, that the violence training part got watered down. Then when those kids grow up and start schools of their own, they are starting from a watered down perspective. This created an opportunity for schools that marketed as being “deadly†or “mean†and “nastyâ€. Schools that went hard, hit hard, and pushed the mental toughness. Schools that want to sound tough, so they say they are used by Navy Seals, or Israeli Commando’s or some SWAT team somewhere. The concept of being “mean†or “Nasty†is not new, and not invented by these “hardcore classesâ€, targeting knees, groin, eyes, throat has been in every system since the start of hand to hand fighting. One thing in martial arts that kind of concerns me are incomplete systems. When someone says they formed their own style by throwing out the bad stuff and only keeping what works, it sets off a red flag in my head. Do they really think those “bad†moves were in the system for no reason at all? Or to be bad on purpose? Maybe they just did not fully understand it, or could not make it work for themselves. So they throw stuff away, then their students throw stuff away when forming their own schools, and what are you left with? Something possibly quite incomplete. This extends into the systems the Navy Seals learn, or Israeli Commandos use. They only use their hand to hand when their rifle, handgun and big knife don’t work. And by the way, their hand to hand only has to work long enough for their teammate to help them out. How are those moves and that training practical for an unarmed civilian by himself in a different setting? While this may seem like I’m picking on Krav Maga, this all could have been said about a different popular art in the 1980’s, and a different one in the 1970’s, etc. Saying you are learning Krav Maga is like saying you are learning Army Combatives. Krav was invented by Imi Lichtenfeld and taught as a supplement to the regular training a soldier may get. All Krav Maga is not the same, when it was brought to the U.S. it had to be changed to work for civilians in civilian settings, not just for soldiers. Different people that brought it here added different things, so that there are now different Krav Maga versions. What was added? Who added it? Where did it come from? How was it tested? If you add moves from a traditional martial art to make it work better, why not just learn that traditional martial art in the first place? My point is that you need to look at the school and instructor and not the style so much. There are traditional martial art schools that are very good, and use aliveness training to teach the mental aspects, and there are traditional schools focused on kids or sport or fitness. There are Krav Maga schools that are truly excellent at technique and mental training, and there are Krav Maga places that got their certification to teach after a couple weekends of training. There are good and bad; Tae Kwon Do, Kenpo, Japanese Karate, Kung Fu, Krav Maga, etc. places. How do you know? Visit several times. Do they practice self defense in a realistic manner? Do a lot of Law Enforcement and EMT’s train there?Does the instructor do a good job of explaining the movements?Is the class mostly physical or technical or a mix?Do they work timing and footwork?Do they add stressors to provide realism?My last point is that I’ve talked to many people from these “combatives†classes they took and how awesome they were. When I ask what they did, they say, “Lot’s of push ups, situps, squats, burpees,…†I say that sounds more like a fitness class than a self defense class. Well, then they say they hit pads too, so then it sounds more like a kickboxing class. Fitness aspects are important, but also not at the expense of valid technical training. And that fitness topic will be a thread of it's own soon.
  7. Joe Lewis is certainly a legend in the martial arts community. Not to mention being a champion kickboxer. He wrote an article for Black Belt, Top 10 martial arts for self defense Linky here The Short List, in no particular order: Kyokushinkai Karate Outlaw Tai Chi Bando Kajukenbo Chinese Kenpo Okinawa-Te Judo Aikijutsu Kickboxing Boxing What do you think? Agree, Disagree? Feel some particular art is missing? Discuss
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