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DrFeelgood

DrFeelgood - Lean and Strong 2.0

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Hola, compadres.  Welcome to 2018's first installment of the continuing adventures of the incredible shrinking middle-aged man.  :D

 

Last year I rode the yo-yo a bit, and I don't aim to repeat those mistakes this year.  Additionally, I ended 2017 with a discovery about my coronary health that requires a pretty fair shake-up of my workout grind, which if I'm being totally honest had gotten stale and unproductive.  A shake-up, being just what the doctor ordered, may also be just what I need to break out of my rut.  And while we're shaking it's also a good time to mix up what I've been doing with my diet as well.


For the new and curious, Lean and Strong 1.0 was a constantly-evolving program I put together at the beginning of 2015 to do this:

 

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The program consisted mostly of lifting heavy weights, eating clean foods at a significant daily deficit, and focusing on proper sleep and stress management.  It worked gangbusters, but in the years since I've slowly regained body fat as I've battled through illness, injury, and major life changes.  I've also gotten bored, frustrated, and lazy with my goals.  I never set out to be a weightlifter or a bodybuilder, but I fell in love with barbells and that made it the path of least resistance for designing fitness challenges--which ironically meant that I altogether stopped challenging myself once I hit my initial goals (lean as of 9/15, strong as of 6/16).  Even when it stopped working I kept plugging away at the program and blaming myself for failures.  Then after a mild medical episode and copious testing I was told that I have thickened heart muscle and need to cut back on the heavy strength training.

 

Well to that I say, NUTS!  Mostly, that is. ;) I'm taking the medical advice to heart (heh) but I'm also not going to stop doing what I love.  Thus we arrive at Lean and Strong 2.0; a revamped program designed to take me from 40-year-old squish to 41-year-old badass.  By the end of 2018 I will:

  • Wear size 30W jeans;
  • Weigh less than 200 lbs; and
  • Be able to do 18 consecutive strict pull-ups in a single set.

That's it.  Everything else that's bound to come along in pursuit of those three goals is gravy.  18 pull-ups in '18.  I think I can, I think I can...

 

But that's a tall mountain to climb, and if I only focus on the summit then I'll get discouraged and quit.  So for the purposes of this challenge I'm focusing on just scoring that first pull-up and setting my baseline for all the other bodyweight (GASP!) fitness work I'm going to do.  As usual I'm going to track four objectives in pursuit of my goals.

 

1. Wake.  Good days start on time, so I'm going to continue to push myself to get up at the appropriate hour.  A pass requires me to get out of bed at the first alarm and get moving before 6:45 am.  If I oversleep (or snooze) but still make it to work on time then that's worth a 1/2 point.

 

2.  Eat.  I'm going to continue tracking my daily food intake and macro splits via MFP, but new for 2018 (at least this first challenge) is a different way of Intermittent Fasting (IF).  Rather than maintain a daily eating window I'm going to eat on a 5:2 schedule that allows for moderately higher targets on five non-fasting days then only a small allotment on two fasting days per week.  I've populated my spreadsheet with initial targets that should allow me to sustain a decent rate of fat loss.  I'm going to keep an eye on macros just to make sure I'm getting plenty of good fats and not overdoing it with sugars.  Good carbs will be planned for recovery meals after workouts, which leads me to...

 

3.  Move.  Power Cardio is dead.  It never really worked anyway, so I'm actually excited to try something new.  And for that new program I'm going to follow the Recommended Routine from /r/bodyweightfitness on Reddit.  I'm particularly excited that the RR permits a barbell variation for Squat work that will allow me to lift lower body fairly heavy three times per week.  Yes, this probably goes against the medical advice I was given, but since it's Squat and Deadlift I consider it a reasonable compromise.  The rest of the work is bodyweight strength with increasingly difficult progressions.  I'm going to have to spend the first week (at least) getting up to speed with my progressions, but for now I've populated my spreadsheet with the basics.  On Tue-Thu I'll walk for 1/2 an hour, either outdoors or on the treadmill at home; and Sat-Sun will be rest days, at least insofar as a suburban dad is allowed to rest on a typical weekend. :P

 

4.  Sleep.  In bed on work nights by 10:30 pm with lights out and ready for proper sleep.  This also requires all devices to be turned off--no ebook, tablet, phone, laptop, PC, or TV is permitted to break the darkness after 10:30.  I'm going to have to insist MFG helps me out with this, too, since she likes to read late.  We'll try to make time before bed to do that together, since...

 

I'm adding a couple of untracked life-goals.  One is to read the book I bought during hockey meet-up; I found a hard-cover edition of The Once and Future King by T.H. White.  The other is to do at least 1/2 hour of practice at Rocket League on five nights per week. :D  I really like that game and I want to get better at it, and dribbling and vehicle control training are very necessary.  Plus it'll be a good daily reward for sticking to my Move goals.

 

The usual spreadsheets are fabricated and ready to go for tracking my progress.  Standard weekly check-ins will consist of scale weight, belt notch reports, and progress photos.  The fancy shorts may make an appearance if I feel my performance has been up to snuff. ;)

 

Love you guys and I'm ready to rock 2018 with you!  Next order of business is initial check-in on Sunday morning.

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Following! :) The Recommended  Routine looks interesting. I hope it'll be as fun for you as heavy lifting!

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On ‎1‎/‎4‎/‎2018 at 8:34 PM, LadyShello said:

First and following!

Trophy awarded!  Glad to have you aboard, Shello.

 

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On ‎1‎/‎4‎/‎2018 at 8:41 PM, bker1370 said:

Second and following also

Welcome, bker.  Thanks for joining the crew!

 

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On ‎1‎/‎5‎/‎2018 at 12:37 AM, darkfoxx said:

Following!!

Awesome!  Happy New Year, df. :)

 

On ‎1‎/‎5‎/‎2018 at 6:32 AM, Tanktimus the Encourager said:

About damn time.

I mean, following.

Hey!  Sandbagging properly takes planning. :P

 

Glad to have you along, Tank, as always.

 

On ‎1‎/‎5‎/‎2018 at 8:20 AM, Terah said:

Following!

Woohoo!  Netherlands in the house!  Well, almost--8 days right? ;)

 

On ‎1‎/‎5‎/‎2018 at 9:32 AM, Ensi said:

Following! :) The Recommended  Routine looks interesting. I hope it'll be as fun for you as heavy lifting!

Aw yeah, Finland checking in. :)  Love ya, Ensi!

 

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Even if the bulk of the Routine isn't quite as fun as lifting I'll still have Squat and Deadlift to look forward to on each gym day.  It'll be awkward at first, for sure, but once I'm comfortable with the movements I think the RR will be entertaining and beneficial.  After all, I've never seen a gymnast who wasn't completely jacked lean and strong.  :D

__________________

 

I'm making smallish strides toward being back on plan.  Yesterday was the first time I've tried to eat mindfully since the last challenge ended, and while I mostly succeeded during the day the evening after dinner saw me fall a little too deeply in love with bread and cheese.  I'm pretty sure it was still an overall deficit, and there definitely wasn't any sugar, so it's the beginning of a win in my book.  I (finally) finished reading 1984 yesterday, so after tucking in the kids I was free to do a little Rocket League practice before heading up to bed on time.  Now my slate is clear to start on the new book.

 

The holidays, the medical stuff, and the off-weeks have all conspired to let me get far too comfortable being lazy over the last several weeks.  I don't have much planned for the coming weekend.  We're still playing financial catch-up, so anything that requires spending is off the table.  But the house has some chores that need tending, and the weather looks like it will cooperate, so that should get me moving a little bit.  I'll rake up a bunch of leaves and probably try to wash both cars, plus I'm making a meal to take to a band-mate who recently had a baby--I'll just double that so as to have family dinner done for Saturday too.  If I can stay a bit active Sat-Sun then I should be ready to hit the gym full force on Monday, but I don't relish the DOMSing I'm sure to endure next week.  Nothing for it, though; it's got to be done. B)

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43 minutes ago, T2sarahconnor said:

Following of course!  Looks like a solid plan.  I think we are in the same mindset with kicking it into high gear for 2018!  

The middle gears weren't doing it for me.  :D  I hope this year gets me back to where I want to be.

 

14 minutes ago, darkfoxx said:

Ooooh. I love that book and was totally thinking of rereading it soon!

I've never read it, and my inspiration for picking it out was Professor X's line at the end of X2.  Wolf has dibs on it when I'm finished. ;)

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18 hours ago, DrFeelgood said:

I'm adding a couple of untracked life-goals.  One is to read the book I bought during hockey meet-up; I found a hard-cover edition of The Once and Future King by T.H. White.  The other is to do at least 1/2 hour of practice at Rocket League on five nights per week. :D  I really like that game and I want to get better at it, and dribbling and vehicle control training are very necessary.  Plus it'll be a good daily reward for sticking to my Move goals.

 

Dammit! Thanks for reminding me sir. I'm re-downloading Rocket League tonight! I'll try and join you a few times a week :) 

 

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#RocketLeague2018Goals

 

1 hour ago, DrFeelgood said:

Wolf has dibs on it when I'm finished. ;)

 

WOOT WOOT!

 

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Loving the challenge brother! it was worth the wait. AND, I got to see pics of you with long hair! You look like Madmartigan from Willow :) (which isn't a bad thing. Val Kilmer rocked that roll!)

 

Marmartigan-2.jpg

 

Wolf

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Oooh great choice of book!! I haven't read it since high school but I remember absolutely loving it.  Staying up late to get through it ahead of my reading schedule for class was definitely one of those "huh... I really am a nerd" moments in my life hahah.

 

I like how you're taking your health as a priority but still working in what you love to do instead of letting it totally bum you out :) Yay 2018!

 

So those are calories on the "eat" line and times on the wake and sleep lines, right?

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On ‎1‎/‎5‎/‎2018 at 2:56 PM, Wild Wolf said:

Dammit! Thanks for reminding me sir. I'm re-downloading Rocket League tonight! I'll try and join you a few times a week :) 

 

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Holy crap that goal is unbelievably sick!  Someday my aerial skills will be half that good, and I'll be content. (not)

 

On ‎1‎/‎5‎/‎2018 at 2:56 PM, Wild Wolf said:

Loving the challenge brother! it was worth the wait. AND, I got to see pics of you with long hair! You look like Madmartigan from Willow :) (which isn't a bad thing. Val Kilmer rocked that roll!)

 

Marmartigan-2.jpg

Had you not seen that before?  I feel like I put it up all the time because I'm stuck living in past glories. :D

 

On ‎1‎/‎5‎/‎2018 at 3:52 PM, Raxie said:

Oooh great choice of book!! I haven't read it since high school but I remember absolutely loving it.  Staying up late to get through it ahead of my reading schedule for class was definitely one of those "huh... I really am a nerd" moments in my life hahah.

 

I like how you're taking your health as a priority but still working in what you love to do instead of letting it totally bum you out :) Yay 2018!

 

So those are calories on the "eat" line and times on the wake and sleep lines, right?

Thanks, it was a totally random find at the bookstore.  I still haven't started it yet, though.

 

I hope it turns out to be a reasonable compromise to keep squat and deadlift while working on bodyweight stuff.  I'll wait until mid-year or so before requesting another echocardiogram to see if it's having any effect on my heart.

 

Yep, the spreadsheet was initially populated with those targets, but I've streamlined it a bit since all of that data was redundant and cluttery.  I want it to be legible at a glance.

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Initial Check-in.  Dang, that's one heck of a sandbag!  Sunday morning's scale said 237.1 lbs; that's nearly 14 lbs. heavier than where I ended last challenge and higher than my highest recorded weight in all of 2017!  As of this morning it's already back down to the low 230s, which is about where I started last year.  Over the last two weeks I said yes to literally everything that was placed in front of me or which came to mind while at the grocery store.  The result is not surprising at all, and now it'll be a better story in a few months to say I lost 40 pounds instead of just 25. ;)

 

Incidentally, I now know why that burger in Austin was called 'The Beast'.  Wolf and I were disappointed that it wasn't bigger (that's what she said)...

 

Futurama-Oh-I-Made-myself-sad.gif

 

...so I mockingly re-labeled it 'Son of The Beast' prior to demolishing it.  But after almost a solid (heh) week of being bound up tighter than a Christmas ham I've decided that the burger does indeed merit its given name.  All that to say that hopefully my weight loss begins soon in earnest. :lol:

 

Anyway, my belt is straining Notch 39 at the moment which is as far as I'm willing to let it go.  The holidays were a lot of fun, but now I'm ready to buckle down and get serious.  This week's progress photos were accomplished after church, so the very-evident sandbag also includes an unweighed bonus breakfast. :P

 

ZnHWVhc.jpg

 

Here's my starting line.  Away we go...

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The weight will come off quickly, I'm sure, because it took you only a couple of weeks to gain it ;) I wish you patience and trust in your efforts!

 

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W1D1 - One measly half-point.  The day sort-of started without me.  I mean I was up and moving and all, but I don't really think I was present for much of it. :D  I made eggs and toast for breakfast then headed to church for music practice prior to worship service.  We did a couple of new songs with fun guitar parts, mostly just ad-libbing Ab major pentatonics over a blues progression that was kinda fun.  Then it was home for lunch (MFG's chilaquiles with avocado, yum!) and a day of rest.  I had a small afternoon snack with leftover fettucine alfredo, pistachios, and pecans.  Dinner was small-group potluck with green-chile chicken enchilada casserole, chips and guacamole, taquitos, and split-pea soup in one the group member's new Instant Pot. :lol:  We also took a couple of pumpkin pies for dessert, and since the group was a little smaller than usual I ate two slices with whipped cream.  Day ended up at 3262 kcal with way too much carbs and sugar, but it's still a good step back toward discipline considering what I've been eating recently.  No points, but I enjoyed it.

 

The afternoon slipped away too.  After lunch I played Rocket League for an hour or so, then I flipped over to the football game.  I was sore and tired from the previous day--I busted my butt all day on errands, chores (I got DOMS in my calves from raking the leaves in my front yard, how pathetic is that?), and cooking--so I stretched out on the sofa to relax a bit.  Next thing I knew it was halftime in the football game and MFG was telling me we'd need to leave for small-group in 10 minutes.  I wish I'd been more deliberate about napping because it could have been so much more refreshing if I'd just gone upstairs to my bed.  Oh well.

 

Since I'd lost most of my productive hours earlier in the day I overshot bedtime by half an hour to stay up and take care of some household stuff in preparation for the week to start.  I figured the afternoon nap would help cover any sleep deficit from going to bed slightly late, but then I was awakened at 5 am by some idiot revving his engine up and down my street in the dark.  Trying to get back to sleep was a chore, and that made it harder to avoid the snooze button this morning.  So that's a half-point for bedtime yesterday, but I'm already starting today in the hole, and with a not-minor headache to boot.

 

No biggie, I can put that behind me and get on with the rest of my program today.  I'm slightly anxious to go to the gym--it's going to be weird doing new bodyweight things--but I'm determined to do it.

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*shakes you by the collar*

 

WHY DIDN'T YOU TELL ME THIS WAS HERE! 

 

*ahem*... 

 

FIRST! *looks shifty*

 

50 minutes ago, DrFeelgood said:

 

ZnHWVhc.jpg

 

 

Is there a terribly sad short shortage in Oklahoma? 

 

30 minutes ago, DrFeelgood said:

then I flipped over to the football game. 

 

And that's all you gotta say about that, huh? ;):P

 

I hope you feel better today DFG. 

 

 

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40 minutes ago, Ensi said:

The weight will come off quickly, I'm sure, because it took you only a couple of weeks to gain it ;) I wish you patience and trust in your efforts!

 

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Yeah, most of it is junk weight, and I don't really care about the scale (he lied).  I just want to get on with leanness but without having to wait for it. :D

 

And IIRC they're about to be horrifically murdered in that scene. :lol:  Sometimes haste is warranted!

 

12 minutes ago, LadyShello said:

Count Sunday as your reset day.  Hopefully the headache did not carry over to today.  

Alas, the headache started today. :(  I'm blaming the goon in the ricer car.  I'm sure things will come around.

 

4 minutes ago, deftona said:

*shakes you by the collar*

 

WHY DIDN'T YOU TELL ME THIS WAS HERE! 

 

*ahem*... 

 

FIRST! *looks shifty*

I thought you knew. :P  I changed my signature, updated my links, and posted it to the end of my previous challenge like usual.  Should I put up a flashing indicator light in the shape of my calves? :lol:

 

You'll have to battle Shello for her trophy, but I don't recommend it--she's got hammers after all. ;)  That said, Bro Code prevents me from breaking up a girl fight, so y'all feel free to have at it.

Just make sure I get a front-row seat.

 

12 minutes ago, deftona said:

Is there a terribly sad short shortage in Oklahoma? 

Yesterday was comfy pants day.  I regret nothing.  Except the sandbag, obviously.

 

Next time I'll wear the tartan ones for you.

 

12 minutes ago, deftona said:

And that's all you gotta say about that, huh? ;):P

 

I hope you feel better today DFG. 

Well it was American football for one, between two teams I have little interest in for two, and I was unconscious for almost all of it for three.  About the only other thing I could add is that I used two pillows for my nap. :D

 

Thanks, I'm improving slowly.  I figure the gym this afternoon will either clear it up all the way or actually kill me; either way, problem solved. ;)

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5 minutes ago, DrFeelgood said:

I thought you knew. :P  I changed my signature, updated my links, and posted it to the end of my previous challenge like usual.  Should I put up a flashing indicator light in the shape of my calves? :lol:

 

Um I think I read the update on the last challenge on Tapatalk on my phone and thought "ah, I must check that out when I get home!" and then... just... didn't :(

 

7 minutes ago, DrFeelgood said:

You'll have to battle Shello for her trophy, but I don't recommend it--she's got hammers after all. ;)  That said, Bro Code prevents me from breaking up a girl fight, so y'all feel free to have at it.

Just make sure I get a front-row seat.

 

I would never fight Shello. I might hug her until she gets sick of me. Yes, that will be my strategy. 

 

8 minutes ago, DrFeelgood said:

Well it was American football for one, between two teams I have little interest in for two, and I was unconscious for almost all of it for three.

 

Ah, it's that darn language barrier again. I was just trying to gloat. IIRC you're an Arsenal fan? I thought you were referring to that.

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30 minutes ago, DrFeelgood said:

Should I put up a flashing indicator light in the shape of my calves? :lol:

 

Yes, please :)

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15 minutes ago, deftona said:

Ah, it's that darn language barrier again. I was just trying to gloat. IIRC you're an Arsenal fan? I thought you were referring to that.

Aw man, I didn't realize it was the third round already, so I haven't been paying attention to the cup.  Honestly it's hard to support English football here since so very little of it makes it to broadcast (and whatever does is usually in Spanish).  That's a disappointing result.  I even saw you and Sal talking about Forest on your thread, but I didn't put it together.

 

9 minutes ago, Ensi said:

Yes, please :)

I'll see what I can do.  It'll probably end up looking like a major award. :D

 

122208lampleg.jpg

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19 minutes ago, DrFeelgood said:

That's a disappointing result. 

 

Sir, you are mistaken. We completely had your pants down, it was awesome :D 

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