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Fit Monkey

Fit Monkey's First Challenge

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So...maybe I'm not doing this right, but here goes. I've "signed up" for the NF chin-up challenge - which the email said was 7 weeks, but these forum challenge things say they're 5 weeks...hence not sure I'm doing this right. Whatever. I wanna be able to do pull-ups someday. So I'm starting now.

Today I did the "benchmarks," and it was even less pretty than I expected. I made it to 20sec of hanging from the bar (TRX handles hung over my bedroom door, whatever) without my feet on the floor. I will say I did the full minute of hanging with my feet touching the floor, and didn't really rest before moving on - that may have been my problem. It was more my grip strength giving out than it was my "pull" muscles in my back and shoulders. But there's my benchmark. It is what it is, and I build from there, right?

 

My "5 week challenge" goals are...

1. Workout 5x per week - preferably 3 not-crossfit (because my gym has disaffiliated) and 2 cycling

2. Limit alcohol consumption to one (maybe two) day per week

3. Add progressions for the "chin-up challenge" to my 3 not-crossfit workouts (which still look a lot like CF, though more bodyweight and small dumbbells/kettlebells because I don't currently have access to barbells...yay, pandemic)

4. Finish painting the doors and trim in my condo - already one door/trim down!

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Welcome to our wacky place of fun and trust.

 

I am the Chief of General Menace, so you are in more than capable hands (don't believe anything the rest will tell you, j/k).

 

Regarding your challenge. You made an effort to sign up. You have made a plan. That's already more than doing nothing so it's a huge first step. Besides now you got the whole Ranger Corps backing you up.

 

I believe one of our longtime members @Elastigirl is also working on chinups. So I tagged her just now. You can do that by adding an "@" sign followed by a username.

 

Regarding the 5 and 7 week difference. The challenges over here run for 5 weeks with a rest week in between. The chinup thing is actually a different thing not directly related to this forum, but some people do combine those. If you want more info on the differences between that and this forum you could ask @Tanktimus the Encourager he is the overlord around here and an allround great guy. Besides I have a small bro-crush on him.

 

Anywho...

 

Your challenge looks pretty good for starters. Try to check in here often. Check in on other members cause everybody needs encouraging. And I'll stick around to check in on you a couple of times to see how you are doing!

 

 

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So...no cycling workout today. No workout of any kind because the painting got away from me. Curse past owner of this condo that used different trim around ONE door only, and then caulked it in like nobody's business (then didn't bother to paint the trim they'd so painstakingly caulked in...). Now I have to fix the wall as well. Ugh. But I got the bad trim taken off, most of the gross caulk residue scraped off, some touch-up spackling on the wall, and the frame primed as well as one side of the door primed. Just took waaaayyyyy too long. So cycling will be tomorrow, and hopefully a not-CF workout on Saturday to make up for missing today.

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19 hours ago, juliebarkley said:

Did you get that cycling in? Or any work on the chinups? Don't be afraid to post even if you aren't where you would like to be - we're all here to support you. :)

Thanks for asking! I'm finding it difficult to make time to type up posts - I compose them in my head, just having a hard time getting in front of the computer long enough to actually type them up.

 

Last week I did manage one more cycling workout on Friday, but no other strength work. 

 

This week has been a little closer to goal:

Tuesday - cycling workout (and OMG that was a *hard* one!)

Wednesday - not-CF workout plus bent rows - 15#DB 2x8 + 1x10

Thursday - cycling workout (not as hard as Tuesday, but still pretty tough)

Today I'm still feeling Tuesday's & Wednesday's workouts, so opted for regnerative stuff - foam rolling, yoga stretches, physical therapy exercises for scapular stability and thoracic mobility - plus the bent rows. 15#DB 2x8 + 1x10 again today, so planning to increase weight next workout, which I hope to do on Monday along with a not-CF workout.

So that's 4 workouts this week, an increase from the 3 I did last week.

 

Last week I kept alcohol consumption to 2 days, so that was good. This week I'll be at 4 days if I decide to have a glass of wine while dining socially distanced in her backyard tonight. I'm giving myself grace on this, though - focusing on awareness and mindfulness, rather than just restricting for the sake of restricting.

 

And painting progress continues - currently waiting for the 1st coat of paint to dry on the 2nd side of the 3rd door (out of 4), so I can get a 2nd coat on this afternoon.

 

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And in today's big action...sanding. So. Much. Sanding. Actually not really that much, but it was all I could do because I used up all my sandpaper. Got 3 of 7 windowsills sanded in prep for painting. Yeah, yeah, I know I'm supposed to be working on the doors, but it's been too hot to paint and I'm in a painting stage on door #3. So today I decided to start prepping the windowsills. I'm counting this as my workout today, because between the sanding and the vacuuming I spent 3 hours at it, and it was fairly athletic. I was sweating and my heart rate was elevated (not as much as during a "real" workout, but still elevated). I felt my core working, and definitely my shoulders and forearms. 

 

I should probably still do my bent rows to keep up progress on that front.

 

But I'm about to go pick up Mexican takeout for dinner - yes, including a Margarita. And yes, I had wine with dinner last night. So I guess today makes my 2 days of alcohol consumption goal, and it's only Monday. We'll see how that one goes this week. Tomorrow I get to "see" my immunologist for a video check-in on whether he thinks it might possibly be safe for me to start working again. (I have a Primary Immune Deficiency.) And I have a feeling I know what he's going to say, but then again he said what he said in March and again in May because we were both under the impression that this whole pandemic thing would be more under control by this time. I work in physical therapy, and literally just graduated and got my license as a Physical Therapist Assistant, this spring. As an entry level practitioner, I'm not qualified to provide telehealth services - and no one is hiring anyway, except hospitals and skilled nursing facilities, which my doctor wasn't going to let me work at anyway (he said outpatient only from the get-go when I started school). So yeah, we'll see how the alcohol consumption goal goes. I'm giving myself grace here, because stress!!!

 

But I WILL be riding my bike tomorrow. And sanding. So that's something.

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HARD cycling workout today. Increased my FTP by a couple of points, which makes me happy. Up to 118 now. Decided that I think I'll feel like I'm as powerful/fast/strong as I want to be when I hit somewhere in the vicinity of 160. Once upon a time I was at 146, and that was before starting on immune globulin replacement therapy. This medicine has made things like recovery and forward progress actually possible for me now, which has been a revelation. 

 

The bad news today was that the doc doesn't think it will be safe for me to start seeing patients in person anytime soon. He was like, "maaayyyyybe spring...we'll see what happens with the virus in the community, a vaccine, and so on." And since I'm newly licensed, I'm not qualified to provide telehealth. Not that anyone is hiring right now anyway. Which means the PTA license I just spent 2 years (and really 7 when you consider the entire journey from when I quit my soul-sucking purchasing job) earning...isn't really useful to me right now. Maybe I can get a job as a contact tracer...or I guess I could go back to purchasing...but did I mention the soul-sucking part of that? I really hated it by the end and really hate the idea of going back to it now, when I've worked so hard to be able to do something I truly love.

 

So I'm a little...no, a LOT...bummed. There's a lot I'm not saying here because it's complicated and off-topic. Suffice to say, life is kinda sucking pretty hard right now. But I'm going to go pick up some dumbbells because I didn't manage that yesterday and I want to continue making progress with the few things I CAN control...

 

Update - did my bent rows. 20#DB, 2x8 + 1x10. Kinda surprised I got the 10 reps on the 3rd set even with the increased weight today. Left side is definitely weaker than right, as getting the 10th rep was pretty tough. But I got it. Yippee for me!

Edited by Fit Monkey
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Agghh, sorry for the frustrating news.That must be so hard after getting your PT training, and now having to wait.Yay for doing the bent rows!

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Hey Fit Monkey, sorry to hear about the job difficulties, that's really tough. The attitude of focussing on what you /can/ control is great though, stick with that.

 

On 8/19/2020 at 3:14 AM, Fit Monkey said:

There's a lot I'm not saying here because it's complicated and off-topic.

 

Don't worry about going off topic here - a lot of folks talk more about their mental health than their physical health on the forums (and lets face it the two are inextricably linked). Obviously don't feel the need to share more than you feel comfortable with sharing, but we're here if you want someone to listen.

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Yay for the update with the dumbbells, the news about the work sucks! I have been working since i was 18 (almost 22 years now, god i'm getting old) and even though you made it pretty clear that going back to purchasing is soul sucking, i think it still beats no income, and possibly big gaps on your resume. Mind you i was raised pretty capitalistic (i guess is the best word, i'm not really into those descriptive terms).

 

On 8/24/2020 at 10:25 AM, Jarric said:

don't feel the need to share more than you feel comfortable with sharing, but we're here if you want someone to listen.

 

So much of this!

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As we draw to the conclusion of this 5-week challenge, I'm thinking of how it's gone...

- I'm happy with the progress I did make:

-- I managed 2 cycling workouts 3/5 weeks, despite some chamois/saddle "issues," which is an improvement from what I had been doing. One of the weeks that I didn't manage a 2nd workout was due to a migraine, so I don't really count that as my own failure.

-- 2/5 weeks I managed at least one other workout session, including some work on the "chin-up challenge"

-- I *crushed* the goal to get the doors and trim painted. All done, plus windowsills! I also got a bunch of little projects done as progress toward prepping the condo to sell.

 

- I think I probably set my expectations higher than might have been ideal for working out, considering the amount of work required on the home improvement front. I'm giving myself grace on this and chalking it up to a learning experience.

-- My partner doesn't do well with leaving things "undone," or less than fully cleaned up at the end of the day, which meant I spent a fair amount of time putting things back in order each day, rather than being able to just skip to my next activity (working out).

-- My energy levels fluctuated more than I'd have liked these last few weeks, in part because of emotional upset due to job stuff. I've never been unemployed for any length of time in my life, so this is a new experience to begin with. Add a doctor telling me that he doesn't want me working outside of my house until likely next spring because of the pandemic, and you throw a major wrench in the machinery of the profession I've been working toward for the last 7 years. I'm having to apply for work-from-home call center positions and other things completely unrelated to what I've *just* earned my license to do (physical therapy), because of an immune deficiency I was born with but which wasn't diagnosed until a few years ago. 

-- I still struggle with balancing things, even when I don't have a job to go to. Definitely some room for growth there.

 

So maybe the next challenge revolves around building a little more consistency - by baby steps - in the working out thing. I always feel better when I work out regularly, but I struggle with consistency because I let other priorities (home improvement projects, etc.) get in the way. I need to figure out some kind of low-energy workout option for days when I don't feel well enough for a full workout, so that I don't just skip it.

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