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Hello, all! Last challenge, I got some bad news and found out that I wasn't accepted to OCS. It's a bummer, but I did find out that I was very close to making it. This means I have a really good chance at making it in with the next selection board! In order to do that, though, this challenge is going to focus on resetting my mindset, recentering my goals, and rebuilding my strength because I pushed my body a lot last month. In fact, I pushed myself so hard that I gave myself shin splints! Which... ouch. Not fun. I'm going to try and make this challenge a little less complicated than the last few though, and just stick with the "reset, recenter, rebuild" theme.  Also, I have a Spartan race May 12! I want to make sure I'm ready as possible for that. I think by sticking to my goals I should be able to do that. 

 

Reset:

This is the recovery portion of the challenge. I pushed my body too hard, to my detriment, last month. I need to make sure I'm taking time to recover, or in other words, reset my body back to where it was pre-shin splints/burnout. The goals:

  • Daily exercises for my lower-body targeting shin splints. This will include a lot of the stretches that @Xena recommended to me during the last challenge! Also important is hip flexibility.
    • How I'll keep myself accountable: I'll need to check off a box every day in my bullet journal saying that "yes, I did these." I'll put in a habit tracker to keep myself accountable
  • Foam roll a minimum of once a week. Full-body foam roll, no excuses. 
    • How I'll keep myself accountable: another check in the bullet journal! This one won't be in the habit tracker, but will be a box in my "to-do list."

 

Recenter:

Self-care is something I struggle with, and I've noticed that when I don't do it, I tend to spiral into dark gloomy places and just don't do as well. The goals this time? Self-care and journalling.

  • Self-care: take half an hour to do something that brings me joy that isn't exercise (gasp) or watching Netflix each week. Bonus points if it's something creative like finishing one of my craft projects (or mending the jeans I've been putting off mending for months now).
    • How I'll keep myself accountable: another box on my to-do list for the week!
  • Journalling: When I started journalling a couple of months ago, I noticed that it really helped! And then, of course, I kind of stopped. The goal is to get back to consistently journalling at least 3 days a week.
    • How I'll keep myself accountable: a row in my habit tracker!

 

Rebuild:

I need to rebuild the basics, even while I'm letting my body recover. 

  • Push-ups: I would like to be able to do a minimum of 40 consecutive push-ups even while tired and sore after a long day of PT/after a tough gym session. I want to get as close to 40 push-ups by the end of the challenge as I can 
    • How I'll do this: Do [X] amount of push-ups a day, 6 days a week! Sundays are rest days, and will have no push-ups. 
      • Week 0, Tuesday- Saturday: 50 push-ups a day
      • Week 1: 50 push-ups a day
      • Week 2: 60 push-ups a day
      • Week 3: 60 push-ups a day - NO PUSH-UPS THURSDAY-SUNDAY BECAUSE SPARTAN RACE
      • Week 4: 60 push-ups a day
    • How I'll keep myself accountable: A special row in my habit tracker each week
  • Pull-ups: not just for the PFT, but for my Spartan race that I'm running in May! (But mostly for the PFT and OCS.) The challenge? Do either the workout my OSO gave me or do an Armstrong workout 3xs a week. That's it. Just 3. Also flexed arm hang practice 3xs a week! 
    • How I'll keep myself accountable: Well, I'll be at the gym 3xs a week already! I'm going to just keep doing what I've been doing for the past couple of weeks
    • Special exception: I'll be doing only 2 days of pull-ups on Week 3, to make sure I'm well-rested for my spartan race!
  • Running: with shin splints, I can't do as much running as I would like, and definitely can't do any sprinting until probably after the race. I can, however, make sure I do 2-3 miles 3 times a week. Hill training is okay, slow runs are okay, even a 5k is okay as long as I'm taking time to make sure I can recover. 

 

Bonus challenges:

  • Sign up for an intro/free cross-fit class!  At the OCS Prep Day I did this past weekend, the PTI I survived met said that a great way to build endurance is to do CrossFit. As such, a bonus challenge I'm setting for myself is to sign up for an introductory/free crossfit class at a local crossfit gym. Ideally, I'd be able to get a couple of weeks of free classes by trying out different gyms to see how this goes.
  • Try to do a handstand a day. This is just for fun. I've gotten pretty good at doing minimally-supported handstands, where I'll have a foot lightly touching the wall for balance, and I can even hold myself up without any support for 2-3 seconds! I haven't done handstands in a while though, and would like to get back to practicing those again. 
    • No need for a habit tracker, as this is just for fun.

 

Well, that's it for now, I think! 

Edited by NicTheRugger
Edited to amend push-up challenge to Doug's great idea!
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3 hours ago, NicTheRugger said:

I would like to be able to do a minimum of 40 consecutive push-ups even while tired and sore after a long day of PT/after a tough gym session. I want to get as close to 40 push-ups by the end of the challenge as I can 

When I had a push up challenge, I went the route of doing x pushups every day. Not all at once, just throughout the day. Have a minute and no one is watching? Drop and do 5! Waiting for the shower to warm up? Drop and do 15. Fitting into the day made it a game to get to the number I had set and took some of the pressure off. The hard one was on those days that I couldn't find motivation, I'd have to force myself to do a bunch before bedtime or have an F for that day. Made doing them the next day easier as I didn't want to have to face that the next night.

 

Other than that, I like your goals and strategies. 

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13 hours ago, GoodDoug said:

When I had a push up challenge, I went the route of doing x pushups every day. Not all at once, just throughout the day. Have a minute and no one is watching? Drop and do 5! Waiting for the shower to warm up? Drop and do 15. Fitting into the day made it a game to get to the number I had set and took some of the pressure off. The hard one was on those days that I couldn't find motivation, I'd have to force myself to do a bunch before bedtime or have an F for that day. Made doing them the next day easier as I didn't want to have to face that the next night.

 

Other than that, I like your goals and strategies. 

Oooh, I like this so much better. That actually works much better with my schedule too! I'm going to change my challenge to do this instead. Thanks for the idea!

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On 4/15/2019 at 3:37 PM, JessFit said:

FIRST FOLLOWER! Great goals, I can't wait to watch you smash them. 

Thanks!! Same to you!

 

On 4/15/2019 at 5:27 PM, Xena said:

Good luck! Very nice organized list of goals, and you have great motivation!

Thank you! Let's hope that I can stay as organized as my goals haha :lol:

 

19 hours ago, Elastigirl said:

Love your goals and your plan to make yourself accountable!

Thank you! I really like using my bullet journal as an accountability measure. I have it open on my desk every day at work, so I can see the boxes staring at me all blank and unfilled, which motivates me to get the tasks done!

 

Quick update: no handstands yesterday, because it was an absurdly busy day, and as I'm coming to realize, I can't do all the things all the time. I need to focus on priorities, and then fit in the fun stuff as needed. I did get in a nice 3.5 mile run yesterday with a friend after work. We broke it up into 2 fartlek sessions of 9 minutes (2 minutes recovery pace, 1 minute race pace, repeat for 9 minutes), and then did a C25K workout for the last mile, because of my shin splints. And I hit 50 push-ups yesterday! Also got some good stretching in for the shins after the run.

 

Just finished my morning pull-up workout. Thinking about modifying the workout my OSO gave me so that it's a combination of the Armstrong workout and the workout she gave me. The partial ROM exercises don't seem to be helping me much, so maybe doing band assisted pull-ups instead will help more. 20 push-ups in and it's not even noon yet! No handstand yet, because I feel weirdly self-conscious and kind of silly doing handstands at the gym. Tonight though, for sure.

 

In career news, I've been invited to a second interview at a District Attorney's office in my state. I applied last challenge after I initially failed my PFT, and had a first round interview that same week.  I guess that means they like me? A little worried about what would happen if I get the DA job, decide to leave my current company for it (because I went to law school to be a DA, not do tax law), and then get accepted to the Marines. But as I haven't gotten that job, I'll cross that bridge when I get to it. That's all for now, folks! I'll check in with you all later.

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You know those weeks where you're just tired all the time? It's one of those weeks for me. I feel like I haven't had a "free" weekend where I wasn't doing something other than basic chores for the past 2 months. Realistically it's been about a month, but still. I'm feeling a bit burnt out and tired. For Easter weekend, my family (parents, sister, and I) are driving up to New York to visit my little brother at his college so he's not alone for the holiday. That's about 3 hours of driving, one way. We'll leave tomorrow, and come back Sunday afternoon. Weekend after that, I'm planning on going to an intro crossfit class and dealing with a yard sale. First weekend of May, going to pick up my brother from school, and then the weekend after that, it's partner's med school graduation/Marines leadership exercise/Spartan race. The first weekend I'll be "free" is the weekend of the 18th. Yikes. I miss having free weekends and time to sleep in. 

 

In other news, did a C25K "run" yesterday with my work friends. I say "run" instead of run because there was walking involved. But we actually did 3.1 miles (a full 5k!), and outside of the 5 minute warm-up/cool-down, the walking intervals were very short (1 minute, 2 minutes, 2 minutes) so that's okay. My shin splints were particularly grumpy yesterday in (for?) my left leg, so I was going much slower than I normally would be, sans shin splints. Hit only 45 push-ups yesterday, and no handstand. Got in some more shin splint stretches, and taught them to my friends as well, so that way they don't end up like me!

 

Today:

Pull-up workout at gym, and I'm at 35 push-ups for the day. Still need to handstand. I did some hip strengthening exercises at the gym, and some calf-raises. Haven't done much else yet in terms of stretches. I just realized that I haven't done any flexed arm hangs this week... I'll have to do one tonight when I get home, one tomorrow before I leave for NY, and one on Sunday when I get home.

 

I've registered with the crossfit gym that I want to take the intro class with. Unfortunately, I can't sign up until exactly 1 week before, so I'll need to sign up tomorrow. But I'm partway there! I'm so excited!

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Can you take a personal day from work and just veg? Sounds like it might be helpful with how crazy your schedule has been. 

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Ugh, I hate shin splints...hopefully they're not giving you too many issues :(

I can relate on the lack of free time, this weekend my body said "nope" and I ended up sleeping in till 9:30 on Saturday (granted, I didn't get home from work till 1am, but very unusual for me) then slept till 8;30 Sunday when I had gone to bed at 9...sometimes if you don't take the time your body will take it for you ;) 

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On 4/19/2019 at 11:42 AM, JessFit said:

Can you take a personal day from work and just veg? Sounds like it might be helpful with how crazy your schedule has been. 

I decided to take this Friday off for that exact reason! I'm hoping that a mostly lazy Friday will be just what the doctor ordered. I'm going to work out, of course, and do the house cleaning that way I can focus on crossfit, the yard sale, and going to my cousin's birthday party (a new thing that got tacked onto my weekend) on Saturday, and rest on Sunday. 

 

On 4/20/2019 at 5:38 PM, DJtrippyT said:

good luck! As a fellow bullet journaler I like your habit tracker idea.

Thank you! I'll admit, the habit tracker is a bit of a pain to keep up with at times, but it's pretty good at keeping me accountable (for the most part).

 

3 hours ago, RES said:

Ugh, I hate shin splints...hopefully they're not giving you too many issues :(

I can relate on the lack of free time, this weekend my body said "nope" and I ended up sleeping in till 9:30 on Saturday (granted, I didn't get home from work till 1am, but very unusual for me) then slept till 8;30 Sunday when I had gone to bed at 9...sometimes if you don't take the time your body will take it for you ;) 

That sounds lovely! I somehow lack the ability to sleep in. Even on weekends, I find myself waking up before 6, and it can be tough, especially since all I want to do is sleep! I'm hoping that I'll be able to sleep in on Sunday though.

 

 

Week 0 update:

This 0 week was definitely a challenge. I felt super busy and tired, and somehow didn't get nearly enough done! I'm going to take the flexed arm hang off my challenge, since I just never remember to do it while I'm working out, and I'd rather do actual chin-ups when I pass by my bar at home. I'm going to stick with the push-ups though, since I was able to do 10 consecutively in a pretty quick fashion on Saturday. I didn't hit 50 every day last week, but I'm going to do my best to hit that this week. I also ate way too much this past weekend. It was delicious, so I don't feel too bad, but I'm pretty sure I put on at least 3 pounds from all of that food. 

I also didn't journal enough last week. Just the once. And no self-care either. Admittedly, that was because I was in New York all weekend visiting my brother for Easter, so my normal weekend schedule got pretty disrupted. No foam rolling this past week either... woof. But, on the plus side of things... I signed up for that free cross-fit class for next Saturday! It's 90 minutes long, which is both exciting and a little nerve-wracking. What am I going to be doing for those 90 minutes?! How sore am I going to be after that?

 

I've scheduled that second-round interview for this Thursday. I'm excited but also nervous, because the reality that I may actually get this job is starting to sink in, and I really don't know what to do. On the one hand, I would love to work for a DA's office. It's what I went to law school to do, it gives me the opportunity to help people, both by recommending diversion programs and treatment programs to people who really need it, and by helping victims of crimes. On the other hand, if I get selected for OCS for the September class, then I have to quit that job after only 3 months and that's not really fair on the DA's Office. It's also not the most professional thing, and considering how small the legal community can be, I'm worried about long-term repercussions to my professional reputation. There's also the fact that if I get and accept the job, I have to move closer to where I'd work. And considering I may be leaving in September, that means I'd have to find short-term housing, either by living in a motel for 3 months, or by renting an Air BnB for 3 months or so. It's just stressful and I'm really not sure what the best option is. It would be so much easier if I knew what was going to happen for September. 

 

Today's update:

Went to the gym this morning and did most of the workout my OSO gave me. I'm going to try something new, where I do the "warm-up" (which is really a workout, when you do 4-5 sets of it) in the morning, and then mid-afternoon and evening do the Armstrong method. So somewhere between 3 and 4 pm, I'll do 3 sets of max-effort push-ups, and then in the evening, do the prescribed Armstrong workout for the day. I'm going to follow the "beginner" workout, because it's only 3 days a week, and I'm not physically ready for the 5 days a week one. I think that would be too much for my body. This way, I'm hitting my pull-ups and push-ups in one fell swoop on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays! Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Saturdays will just be push-ups scattered in throughout the day. I'm at 20 push-ups for the day so far. I'm hoping I can do the last 30 during that 3-4 pm period today. 

 

I'm really tired after my weekend. I didn't sleep well over the past few days, so I'm pretty groggy today, and it's why my post is such a wreck right now! I'm basically writing stream of consciousness, checking only for spelling. I think that's it for now. I'll check in again soon. 

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What it is about Week 0 that makes it so exhausting?  Same thing here.

 

I wouldn't worry too much about having to leave a new job after only three months, particularly if you get accepted to OCS.  They will understand - you need to do what's best for you.

 

We are very like-minded, BuJo-wise.  I can't start my day until I have consulted mine.  I track everything in it.

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On 4/22/2019 at 7:05 AM, NicTheRugger said:

I'm at 20 push-ups for the day so far. I'm hoping I can do the last 30 during that 3-4 pm period today.

Let us know if you get that last 30 in today. Just imagine a big old half-ogre watching and cheering you on.

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On 4/22/2019 at 2:08 PM, BlackCatMagic said:

What it is about Week 0 that makes it so exhausting?  Same thing here.

Allllllllllll of this!

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15 hours ago, GoodDoug said:

Let us know if you get that last 30 in today. Just imagine a big old half-ogre watching and cheering you on.

I did! I've been 2/2 so far this week, and I'm already halfway through for today's 50!

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An Update:

 

Did 3 miles with Couch to 5k yesterday with a couple of friends. Hit 50 push-ups! I'm noticing that my sets are already getting better. I was struggling to do just 5 reps for a single set last week, but now I'm pushing sets of 7 or 8 reps on the reg! If only progressing with pull-ups was this easy...

 

Speaking of pull-ups. I seem to be backsliding. I haven't been able to hit 4 chin-ups since my PFT! I'm not sure what happened. I don't know if it was just sheer dumb luck that I hit 4, or if my muscles are just tired, or something but it's really frustrating. I'm going to try to do sets both in the morning and evening, to see if that helps. Maybe I should start greasing the groove again? Or do something like my push-up challenge and try to hit 50 chin-ups a day? It's a bit harder to do that though, since I'm limited to doing those in the morning and evening, when I'm at home. It's not like I can stick a pull-up bar up in a doorway at the office! I want to keep moving forward, not backward, and I'm frustrated that I came so far, and now I'm apparently going in reverse. I decided to take a pause from my OSO's workout today, and went back to one of my old workouts, which is a combo of weightlifting and bodyweight stuff. Does anyone have any advice about what might be causing this regression?

 

Worked out at the gym today, I'm at 25 chin-ups (some w/ resistance bands, some just on their own), and 25 push-ups. Still haven't done a single handstand this week... I should really get on that! Maybe I'll book a conference room for 15 minutes and do a handstand or something haha. Journaled on Monday, and I'm on track to journal again tonight. 

 

That's all for now. See y'all soon!

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I know when I was trying to get my pull-ups I found that I had to go hard for a while and then give it a rest, after a couple days rest, do a test to see how many you can do. When I did that, I would find I had made a breakthrough. Push-ups I could just keep going but pull-ups required that rest to make real progress.

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21 hours ago, GoodDoug said:

I know when I was trying to get my pull-ups I found that I had to go hard for a while and then give it a rest, after a couple days rest, do a test to see how many you can do. When I did that, I would find I had made a breakthrough. Push-ups I could just keep going but pull-ups required that rest to make real progress.

that just might be what I have to do! 

 

An update: 

I heard from my OSO yesterday, she wants me to come in for another PFT within the next couple of weeks, to start off the application process for the next selection board. I'm a little nervous, truth be told. I'm taking it May 10, that's both the latest and earliest I could push it off, since I already conveniently had that day off. I'm going to take Sunday through Tuesday off from pull-up training to see how I'm doing on Wednesday. 

 

Things so far challenge wise: I have my intro to crossfit class on Saturday, I'm still horrible at keeping with my handstand challenge. I've been doing my stretches regularly, and Tuesday was actually the first day I was able to run without shin splints. I haven't gone running today because I wanted to sleep in a bit this morning, considering I slept horribly last night. I'm going to use my day off tomorrow to enjoy a nice out-door run. I'm going to bust out my trail running shoes and the bug repellent and hit the trails! Doing alright on the push-ups. All in all, not a bad first-half of the challenge!

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Hello, friends! Checking in for the past few days. I had yesterday off, which was amazing. I really needed that day off. I treated myself to a poké bowl, and it was good! Nothing super special, but it was nice. That counts as my self-care for the week.

 

I also cleaned the house and went for a run!

 

Today, we had the yard sale (not very successful this week) and my "Elements of CrossFit" class. It was less CrossFit and more learning how to do the basic weightlifting motions safely and accurately. I'm going to sign up for a couple of classes to see how I like it there.

 

I didn't get to 50 push-ups Thursday or yesterday, but I did do handstands! I was able to hold a 5 second unsupported handstand yesterday, which is super exciting for me. I haven't been able to do that in years!  Shin splints are doing much better. Running hasn't been painful this week, which is great! I'm going to stick with these stretches to make sure this doesn't happen again.

 

I think that's it for now. Bye, folks!

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Week 1 write up:

While I didn't hit all of the goals for this week (forgot the foam rolling... d'oh!), I had a pretty good week. I took my Intro to Crossfit class, which checks off that goal. I did 4 handstands. did push-ups almost every day, even if I didn't get to 50, and journalled. I did3 pull-up workouts. Only 2 runs, but I probably did about a mile of pushing/carrying heavy objects up my driveway, which is maybe 90m long. 

 

Short write-up, but I'm really happy with my week 1.

 

Today:

I did a real cross-fit class for the first time and oh. my. goodness. I hurt. My lower back is screaming at me every time I move. I haven't done deadlifts in a while, and even though my form was solid (per the instructor), I'm having lower back spasms and pain because I'm just not used to deadlifts. I also may have lifted too much in a first attempt, trying to figure out what my 65% amount was.

 

Today's workout was.... brutal. I am so incredibly sore right now. That being said, it was super fun and I'm definitely thinking about signing up for a membership. 

WARM-UP
COACH LED
 
METCON
METCON (WEIGHT)
E2MOM 10
5 DEADLIFTS (65%) (75 lbs)
5 PULL-UPS
10 PUSH-UPS
15 AIR SQUATS
METCON
METCON (TIME)
21-15-9
SUMO DEADLIFT HIGH PULL(75/55) (45 lbs)
MEDBALL SIT-UPS (20/14)
MOBILITY AND RECOVERY
 
Because of this workout, I'm 50/60 push-ups for today! About half of them were knee push-ups, after a certain point, but I'm still counting them towards my total because reasons. I'm looking forward to an ice pack and then a hot epsom salt bath tonight for my lower back. We'll see how I'm feeling tomorrow. I'm also going to pick up some Tiger Balm for immediate application. I don't care how smelly I'll be at work. I am SORE. 
 
In other news... GAME OF THRONES LAST NIGHT, OH MY GOSH. That was a night for some serious lady power! Very inspiring for this Amazon ranger, for sure. I don't want to spoil anything, so that's all I'm going to say on it. But I definitely spent the first hour and a half I was at work nerding out with my friends. That's it for now! Bye, friends.
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