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There ain't no swing dancing going on this time! These swings are all about the kettlebell. Looking to improve on the gains I made over the last challenge, this time around the focus shifts to more kettlebell work and side thrust kicks. 1. Consistent kettlebell training - 5 times a week I had a lot of routines over the years but either I get bored to easily or I loose my motivation to easily. With that said, this time around I want to get in at least 5 kettlebell workouts a week. I have to do at least two set for it to be considered a workout with all five exercises in circuit form. 2. Focus on side thrust kicks - 5 kicks each leg 7 days a week I am aiming the bar pretty high doing kicks every day of the week but if I want to keep the momentum that I gained over the last few challenges, it's time to step it up a notch. 3. Mobility or flexibility work - 5 times a week I started doing some mobility work at my office each day and it seems to be helping my hips. I have also been doing hip flexor work along with my kicks in between my kettlebell sets so this shouldn't be too hard to reach. Extra credit - Publish at least one blog post each week I have been behind in my writing and if I ever plan on doing it for a living, I need to write a lot. The posts need to be at least 300 words and useful to be considered a win.
Since my schedule doesn't conform to my workouts, it's time to do some unconventional training. Knowing that I cannot train like I want to each day, I have to find a way to continue to improve with little or no energy after a long day at work. This goal for this challenge is to do something, even it's only for a few minutes each day. I know that I can at least do something since I have been doing katas every day for the last three years now and I figured I can do some type of training, even if it's only a few sets or a small group of movements. 1. Do some form of mobility / flexibility training three times a week. I am seeing a lot of improvement since I started doing Pavels' programs and I want to keep them going. If I get in at least three 15 minute sessions a week, I will be happy. Any more is extra credit. 2. Time to get big and strong I am feeling kinda small, especially my arms and I need to fill out my old shirts like I did in the past. The plan is do some form or kettle swings five days a week and throw in some pulling, pushing, squatting and loaded carries along with the hinge movement on days that I have the energy. 3. Karate, Karate and more Karate Kicks still need to improve and stances could be better too and those will be focused on throughout the day along with some focused training on at least two days each week. I used to do kicks in the bathroom at work along with some stance work and I think that has to happen again since I am work for so many hours. Since 50 was a big number for me, over the last year, I want to get in 50 of these mini workouts over the next four week. Life goal Get off my ass and work on alternate forms of income. I'll be honest, I like my job and what I do but I cannot keep working longer hours each week. My work / life balance sucks and all the hours at work is making me tired and crabby at home. This is a wake up call for me and I need to at least try something to move me toward this goal. It's time to stop wasting my off hours sitting on my ass and start doing freelance work building websites and writing content again which I really enjoy.
I always liked the idea of having enough time to work on a specific goal. When I was moving up through the ranks in Karate, I always had something to work toward and this might get that old fire started again. The four week challenges are good but I always seem to find myself changing goals every four weeks, so this time, I am going to spend the whole year of four week challenges improving my kicks. Goal 1: Kick five times per week. For many years now, I have been fighting an uphill battle with my side thrust kicks. For some reason, even though I have been able to improve in other areas, my side thrust kicks have always been my worst technique. This time around, 2017 seems like a good place to start improving them. For the next 12 months, the main focus will be getting my side thrust kick up to rib level with correct form and body mechanics. Kicking five times a week is the goal and the plan is to have quality instead of quantity. Instead of doing a high number of kicks each day, I am going to do five kicks with each leg with as perfect form as I can do. This number will increase as my form improves. Goal 2: Stance training three times a week. Even though I have made good progress with my stances, there is always room for improvement. The goal is to do some form of specific stance training three times per week which will include static and moving training. Goal 3: Mobility, flexibility, strength and stability four times per week. This goal I feel will help with both goals above. My hips are the best that they have been since I started Karate training many years ago but they need more work along with the rest of my body. This will include, all of the mobility routines I have done over the years, Tai Cheng, stretching or strength training. Each of the four days will include at least one of those areas. Extra credit: Headspace five days a week. Listening to Headspace seems to be helping my concentrate and focus better but I need more consistency and five days a week should help. Life goal: Create a plan that allows me to work for myself. I have a good job and even though I am grateful to have it, working for someone else for the rest of my life is something that I don't want to do. After working for 30+ years, I know that companies go under, management changes and bosses can just go crazy and fire people at their will and it is something that I have no control over unless I do my own thing. I plan on being there in the next four and half years but I need to start planning now otherwise it won't happen. I have a couple of projects that I think can take me where I want to go but I need to get them down on paper or screen and set deadlines for each one. I plan on spending at least one hour each week getting this plan in place. I know where I want be and now I need to map out how to get there.