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Hazard

Can I eat MORE and still lose fat? Let's find out!

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Welcome to my Challenge thread.  I'm not new to NF.   If you're a Level 1, then I'm your Guild Leader

 

My 4 Week Challenge is posted in this Level 1 subforum in the hope that you seeing how I format and organize my Challenge might help give you ideas for your own.  What I hope you'll take away from reading my Challenge is how straight-forward my Main Quest is, and how my Support Quests are directly aimed at helping me make progress on my Main Quest.  

 

                                  There's great power in simplicity.

 

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My Main Quest presently is to...

  • Drop bodyfat.  At least 1 lb per week.

 

 

My Support Quests for this challenge

  1. Eat 2400 calories daily.  (I'm tracking via MyFitnessPal).
  2. Burn off calories jogging for an hour, 6 days per week.

 

 

 

Quest Note:

  • In this challenge I'm trying to eat as many calories as I can get away with eating -- while still losing at least 1 lb per week on average.  I'll be adjusting my calorie allowance every two weeks (down or up), if needed, based on my rate of weightloss.

 

(Optional, Side Quest)

  • As a side quest, I may start doing some strength training again.  But it's optional, and not a priority.  If I do it, it'll come after I get my jogging done for the day.

 

 

 

 

About Me

 

My Muggle name is Chris.  I'm a 41 yr old sort-of-retired guy happily at home being the primary caregiver for my two-and-three-quarters year old daughter.  Which is the Best. Job. Ever.  The pay is non-existent, but the benefit package is fantastic and calls me "Daddy."  Which is the most awesome word that's ever been invented, and if you disagree, then dishonor on your cow.

 

ColorlessEnragedHarvestmouse-size_restri

 

 

My recent(ish) fitness journey:

 

For eight months, I did a Walk to Mordor, walking the 1700+ miles it's estimated Frodo and Sam walked from Hobbiton to Mt. Doom.  It started off slow, just a couple of miles a day, but as my feet toughened up all Hobbity-like I was able to put in more and more daily distance.  That Walk to Mordor became the foundation upon which I've been building up to what I'm doing now.

 

My daughter still slept most of the day back during my Walk to Mordor, which gave me a lot of time to walk.  But as she's gotten older, she sleeps less during the day.  When she's awake, my focus is on her.  Which means as she's gotten older, I've had less and less time for exercising.  In order to keep getting those wonderful calorie-burning miles done with less time, I've had to do them faster.  To do that, I had to start doing some jogging, and so I transitioned from doing only walking to doing jog/walk intervals.

 

I use an iPad to watch videos while on my treadmill, which keeps me from getting bored.  For the last couple of months, I've also entertained myself by doing curls and overhead presses with dumbbells during the walk intervals.   Which made me kinda feel like I'm in an action video game, doing my 'attack moves' while on the go.

 

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When I first started doing jog/walk intervals, my only intention was to get to the point where I could jog a 5k every day.  But jogging was hard!  I couldn't jog for very far.  And when I did jog, I got out of breath quickly.  Plus, it made me sore (my poor knees, ankles, and foot arches!).  I kept working at it though, and got to the point where I could do a jog/walk 5k nearly every day.  I would jog a little distance, then walk that same distance.  Over and over until I finished. 

 

I still wanted more though.  I wanted to be able to jog the full 5k distance without walking any.  In fact, I wanted to be able to jog further than a 5k.  I wanted a 5k distance to feel easy, so that I wouldn't have to worry about whether I could complete 5k distance, but instead I'd know I could complete the distance and could focus on getting faster at it.

 

To make a 5k feel easy, I decided to improve my conditioning -- by pushing myself to go further with my jog/walk intervals.  Even if I had to do the longer distance at a slower pace.   I went from doing jogged/walked 5ks nearly every day, to challenging myself to do jogged/walked 10ks nearly every day.  And that quickly turned into me pushing myself even harder, so that I was doing 10 miles (16k) nearly every day.  

 

Then, at the beginning of last challenge, I thought to myself... if I'm doing 10 miles regularly, well, that's ooonly 3-ish miles away from a half-Marathon.   Could I.... possibly.... maybe...... do half-Marathons every day?!?   The thought excited me!  And scared me.  I had this thought rolling around in my head for several days.  Did I really want to try it?  I wasn't sure that I could pull it off.   13.1 miles (21.1 km) seemed like such a long distance.  People spend time training just to do a half-Marathon once, and here I was thinking about trying to do it every, single, day?  That's insane!!   So, of course, I did it Because that's how I roll.  *thuglife*.   During last challenge, I completed 25 half-Marathons.  Not only that, but on one of those days, without taking a single walking step, I actually jogged a complete half-Marathon!  Something I've never done before in my life.  Achievement Unlocked!  :victorious:

 

But.

 

But, but, but. 

 

Doing that much distance takes me a lot of time.  I'm slow at it.  I was having to wake up very, very early in the morning in order to get all those miles done before my daughter woke up.  I was persistently sleep-deprived during last challenge, living off only 5-6 hours of sleep most nights.  That was fine for a short-term challenge.  But it couldn't continue.  I knew I had to make some changes so that I could get better sleep. 

 

And, I remembered why I started increasing the distance in the first place.  It was just to improve my conditioning.  To make jogging a short distance feel easier.   I had succeeded.  The job I set out to do, was done.  It was time to get back to the point of it all.

 

I've had a couple of good months of weightloss.  Between the 19+ lbs  (8.6+ kg) I lost in January, and the 7+ lbs  (3.2+ kg) I lost in February, I've had a fast start to this big "Cut".  I'm actually several months ahead of where I expected to be.  So it's time to chill a bit, and let my cut settle into something that will be sustainable for the months to come.  

 

That's where my Quest goals for this month's challenge come into play.

 

 

If you got this far, thank you very much for reading.  I'd be delighted if you continued to visit my challenge thread, and kept me company throughout this month as I continue along my journey.   If you have any comments or questions, please feel free to post them.  Your comments are appreciated, and your questions are welcome.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Daddy is definitely in the top 5 words, I don't have a cow ;)

I'm still in awe of all those halves and can't wait to see what you accomplish this challenge!

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On 3/11/2019 at 12:22 AM, Tanktimus the Encourager said:

Following! I'm here not to dishonor my cow.

On 3/11/2019 at 6:39 AM, RES said:

I don't have a cow ;)

 

Speaking of.   When we took our dog to the vet the other day to get her kennel shots updated, there was a baby cow in the waiting lobby.  :lol:.

 

 

On 3/11/2019 at 7:16 AM, WhiteGhost said:

Here to keep you company for this part of the journey

On 3/11/2019 at 7:25 AM, Waanie said:

Following :).

 

Welcome aboard!

 

 

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following! I legit HATE HATE HATE jogging. it's just not what I enjoy doing. BUT I applaud anyone who does, especially for extended periods of time over long distances!

 

so excited to see how you do! :)

 

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On 3/14/2019 at 3:26 PM, mmead0105 said:

following! 

 

Welcome! 

 

1 hour ago, annyshay said:

Hey Hazard! Hey!

 

Oh!  I caught an Anny!  Hi! Hi!

 

 

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Weekly

Progress Report

 

Review of Support Quests

 

  • Did I eat 2400 calories daily?

For 5 of 7 days, yes.   Probably not on the other 2 days. 

 

I had social obligations on Monday and Thursday that involved eating at restaurants where I couldn't accurately count calories.  So my total for those two days is up in the air, but my calories on those days were probably higher than my target.  Especially on Monday, since that involved a pizza buffet. 

 

For the five days on which I could count, I ate an average of 2399 calories, in a range of 2387 - 2402.  Which is pretty spot on.   I'm happy about that.  Since I did lose weight for the week, especially in light of the two restaurant days, this suggests that I will probably be able to increase my calorie target.  But I want two weeks of results while eating at the same target before I mess with it.  So I won't be changing it this week.

 

 

  • Did I jog for an hour 6 days of the week?

Yes.

 

When I was preparing my goals for this challenge, I aimed for a treadmill calorie burn of 625 cal.  Which, based on my experience, is roughly what I burn doing 5 miles, and I knew I could cover 5 miles in an hour at a slow steady jog.  I made a mistake though.  I was basing my 625 cal number off of how much I burned across 5 miles during my treadmilling in previous challenges.  But!  I did almost all of my miles in previous challenges using jog/walk intervals.   Because I was fully jogging my miles this week, I was actually burning more calories across 5 miles than when I did it with walked intervals mixed in.

 

My treadmill calorie burn range for this week's jogs was 702 - 772.   My average was 732 calories.  That's a good 100 calories more per day than I planned.  Whoops!  :lol:.  But that's okay.  I want to stick with an hour on the treadmill.  If I happen to be burning more calories while doing it --  then Yay me.  :).

 

 

 

Review of (Optional) Side Quest

  • Did I do some strength training?

Yup.  I made the opportunity to train on two days.   After my hour jogs, I hopped on my exercise bike for 2 minutes to "activate" my knee muscles a little better, then went straight into training.

 

On Tuesday I worked:

  • box squats
  • press
  • deadlifts
  • horizontal rows
  • dips

 

On Friday I worked:

  • box squats
  • bench press
  • deadlifts
  • chinups
  • handstands

 

This is the first week that I've done most of these things in over a year.   It's been more than two years since I touched a couple of them.  It went fine though.  I'm not as strong as I once was, obviously.  That was predictable and expected.  But I slipped right back into doing the exercises like putting on an old familiar coat.  They felt good.

 

 

 

 

Review of MAIN QUEST

 

  • Did I drop at least 1 lb for the week?

 

Yes.  I dropped 1.6 lbs   

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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35 minutes ago, Hazard said:

I was fully jogging my miles this week

Wow, 1 full hour of jogging every day is no small feat.  It's also a significant step up from where you were.  Very impressive!

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On 3/17/2019 at 10:37 AM, WhiteGhost said:

Wow, 1 full hour of jogging every day is no small feat.  It's also a significant step up from where you were.  Very impressive!

 

Thank you. 

 

 

 

On 3/18/2019 at 1:56 AM, Akura said:

Any particular reason why you run on a treadmill instead of outside?

 

The main reason is because my daughter is too young to leave alone at home.   But I also prefer running in my house anyway.   The advantages are numerous -- such as central heating/ac, restroom access, a shelf to set my tablet on, power outlets and the internet.

 

 

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20 minutes ago, Hazard said:

The main reason is because my daughter is too young to leave alone at home.   But I also prefer running in my house anyway.   The advantages are numerous -- such as central heating/ac, restroom access, a shelf to set my tablet on, power outlets and the internet.

 

Good reasons! XD

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On 3/19/2019 at 11:15 AM, Hazard said:

The main reason is because my daughter is too young to leave alone at home.   But I also prefer running in my house anyway.   The advantages are numerous -- such as central heating/ac, restroom access, a shelf to set my tablet on, power outlets and the internet.

Let's not forget the all important no rain/hail/sleet/snow/wind to deal with either...I don't understand when people say they don't like treadmills then let the weather hold them hostage.

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Weekly

Progress Report

 

This'll be short. 

 

I'm sick.  I've been sick for most of this week.   I haven't jogged in a few days, and I don't restrict my diet when I'm sick.  So my weight's up. 

 

It happens.  I'll deal with it when I'm feeling better.

 

 

 

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20 hours ago, Hazard said:

I'm sick... I haven't jogged in a few days

 

Go for a walk every day, if possible. Sun, movement, fresh air... Will make you feel better.

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hope you feel better soon! 

I know my mother in law is sick right now with some stomach thing and my son has a cold :( 

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Thanks everyone.  I'm on the mend.   I've still got the sniffles and coughing up the occasional phelgm.  But I was able to exercise this morning, and I'm back on calorie counting today.

 

 

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Progress Report

 

 

In our last episode, I was recovering from an illness that put my diet and exercise goals on hold for roughly nine days, spanning across two challenge weeks.  I'm pretty much recovered now.  I'm still coughing up some lingering phlegm from time to time, but it's not preventing me from exercising. 

 

Spring equinox was on March 20th, and the season is here in full force now.   The weather is lovely, the flowering beautiful --- and every cubic inch of air is saturated with pollen.  I expect I'll be coughing stuff up out of my lungs for a few more weeks.  Either that, or flowers will start growing out of my nose.  :lol:

 

 

In any case, the Quest result of my illness is that I'm 2.5 lbs heavier at this morning's weigh-in.   And I gained back about a 1/4 inch around my tummy.   It's disappointing.   But sick happens.  It's done.   I've eased back into my questing over the last few days, and am going full force again as of this morning.  I expect to have positive progress to report on next week's update.

 

 

 

 

In the meantime.   I was helping a dude over on this thread, who wanted to be able to do his first chinup/pullup.   After a few weeks of working with him, he seems to have disappeared.   I had made some progression videos for him, as I worked him through the levels trying to figure out which stage he's weak at and would be best spending training time on.   I figure some of my challenge readers might have the chinup/pullup goal too (whether in this challenge or as a longterm goal), so rather than let those videos go to waste I'm reposting them for you here.

 

To make best use of them, just start with the first (deadhangs) and work your way through each progression until you find the one that's appropriate for your current level of strength.  You can test up the progressions on the same day if you want, or do them on different days if you'd like to be fresh each time.  It doesn't matter.  Whichever way you prefer is fine. 

 

 

Level One, is to have (or train to get) enough strength to be able to hold onto the bar.  The Dead Hang lays the foundation. 

 

Grab the bar, feet off the ground, and hold on for however long you can.  I've found that, in general, if you can hang onto the bar for about 25-30 seconds, then you may have enough grip strength to safely try the next progression level.  But that'll vary with the person.  Some people may be able to safely test the next progression despite a shorter deadhang time, and some people may want to wait and develop a longer deadhang time before trying the next level.  Don't compare yourself to other people's needs.  Just do what you need for you.   Whatever the case, being able to hold a longer deadhang is good for everybody.  The longer you can hold it, the better.

 

Here's my Deadhang Demo vid:

 

 

-----

 

 

Level Two, is testing/training with fully bent arms.  Do a Flex Hang.

 

Use a chair, stool, box, the safety bars on a rack, or even just jump up if you're able to catch yourself in a hold at the top.  Whatever method you have or prefer for getting up into the position is fine.  Like with the deadhang, hold on as long as you safely can.  Also like with the deadhang this'll vary with each person, but I've found that people in general can try the next progression reasonably safely when they have enough strength to flex hang for about 20 seconds.   Longer is better.

 

Here's my Flexhang Demo vid:

 

 

-----

 

 

Level Three, is being able to lower yourself under control.  The Chinup Negative.

 

To do a chinup negative, get into the Flex Hang position, then slowly lower yourself as best you can down into the Dead Hang position, at which point you can put your feet down and let go of the bar.  That's one repetition.    If you can do 3 repetitions reasonably slowly and under control, back to back without much rest/pause between reps, then you'll probably have enough strength to start working the next level.  

 

Here's my Negatives Demo vid:

 

 

In any case, it'll be easy to know when you're ready to train on the next level.  It'll be pretty obvious to you, because you'll find it happening almost accidentally anyway when your negatives get strong.

 

-----

 

Level Four, is having enough strength to control yourself at the mid-point of a chinup.   You'll do this by lowering yourself into, and holding, a 90 Degree Flex Hang.  

 

Climb/Jump/whatever yourself into the top Flex Hang position, and then lower yourself by doing a negative.  This time, however, pause when your arms are at a roughly 90 degree angle, and hold yourself in that position as long as you safely can.    As usual, it'll vary per person.  But in general, I've found that when a person can hold themself under reasonable control in the 90 degree flex hang for about 15 or more seconds, they tend to be strong enough to begin safely trying the next level.    Being able to hold the 90 degree flex hang longer is, of course, better.

 

Here's my 90 Degree Flexhang Demo vid:

 

 

 

---

 

The dude I was helping didn't post a reply after that.  And I was making the vids on the spot for helping him.  So that's as far as we got.

 

If anybody reading this is working through my recommended progressions and needs training help, don't hesitate to ask me your questions.  I'm here.  I've been a Guild Leader for 5 years, and was the Assassin Guild's Leader for most of those years.  I'm a free resource.  Take advantage of me.  Ask your questions.

 

Or if you need the next progression level, and would like me to give it, just let me know.  I'll be happy to make the next progression demo, as long as someone tells me they're actually making use of these.

 

 

 

 

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You are amazing with those videos/progressions. I had never thought about holding myself into a flex hang or 90 degree hang. Currently my pull-ups/chin-ups have regressed to the point that I can still get my chin above the bar, but it is very uneven in the first part. I am currently working on leg-assisted pull ups just to get the form down again, but I will give your progressions a go today.

 

I love your powercage, by the way :). It looks like you can do almost anything you need on it, whether it is BW-exercise or picking up heavy metal. 

 

 

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I like those progressions.  At what point do you think it is good to start working the scapular activation?  I usually tell people to do that about the same time they start working on the flex hang, so that they build up strength at both the top and the bottom of the hang (which I find to be the weakest links in the pullup motion)

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