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A lot has happened this past year which I fully intend to break down more in my battle log over the coming days. Many lifechanging things which is amazing.

 

This challenge ends one of the best years of my life, and I truly believe 2024 will be the best one so far.

 

So how do I end strong? What are my goals?

1 - Break 300lbs by the new year. I am currently at 305 lbs. This should be easily doable. I am down at least 85lbs, 5bls is NOTHING.

2 - Complete core 3 strength lifts and workouts each week.

3 - Stick to the meal plan

 

The breakdown

Number 1

Break 300lbs

The highest weight I reached this year was AT LEAST 390 lbs. I say at least because I know it was likely higher than that, but my scale broke. I am now down to 305 pounds. I will end this year below 300lbs. If I have already lost at least 85lbs five more is NOTHING. There's no reason why I can't. it's just that simple.

 

Number 2

Just over a month ago I sat down with my friend who owns a CrossFit gym and told him what I realized. I missed strength work. I had tried to get back into the gym doing all these workouts and cardio things and I hated it. I missed workout after workout because I just didn't want to do it. I loved CrossFit before when I was in better shape because I SUPPLEMENTED my own strength work/strongman training with CrossFit to improve my endurance.

 

So together we came up with a very simple plan to get me back into the rhythm of building my strength doing what I love. To be honest though when I lifted before I always had some nagging fears in my brain. I have crushed those fears (mostly), but at the same time I want to start smart and build a foundation. So on week one I found my 5 rep max, and came up with this simple plan to get back in the groove.

Day 1 - (Mondays) - Deadlift

Day 2 - (Wednesdays) - Overhead Press

Day 3 - (Fridays) - Back Squat

 

Each day I do a 5x5 at a certain percentage of my 5RM. What this means is that on the last week of this program I will be lifting 5x5 at (or above) my previous 5 rep max. Why am I doing this? Well one a lot of my issues with the lifts currently isn't the weight. But form. That's not to say that the weight isn't heavy. I have reached failure a few times. But I know there's some wasted energy here and there.  I supplement this lift with a short warmup, followed by some accessory work and ending with a killer prowler push. Each week I add 5lbs to the prowler. I started at 45 on the sled and am now at 85. Every minute I have to push down and back, with my rest time being whatever remains in that minute for seven rounds. The prowler is the perfect combination of strength and endurance for me. When I was in the best shape of my life I did something very similar but much harder. It was 10 rounds with a partner. 200lbs on the sled. But your rest was only the time it took your partner to do the down and back. 

 

I also have been going to PF 2 days a week to do more muscle specific exercises you can't get in a CrossFit gym. 

 

Number 3

Yes even with the holidays I am going to stick to the foods I have found that work for me and not indulge in holiday excess. This Thanksgiving I ate my own food before the event. The truth is that I do enjoy good food. And often times holidays involve a lot of that in not the best options. But what's most important to me during the holidays is spending time with family and friends. 

 

Now everyone is different. And my plan this time for weight loss is to certainly not require a strict unrealistic meal plan with no pizza, sweets, or holiday foods. The statement "Oh you can have one piece of pie it won't kill you!" Is certainly true. But for me right now it is just NOT WORTH IT. Why would I eat something that isn't going to help me towards my current goal, when it's just a momentary happiness. I will eat that piece of pie in at most a handful of minutes. It is not worth it. Right now I am still working on rewiring my brain and body. And the time to start introducing "cheat" options is not when I am so close to a major goal. 

 

The truth is the more I sit here the more I realize just how little the food matters to me at holidays. I understand that might not be true for everyone with their various traditions and such. But I don't feel any connection to the holiday foods or meals. I don't look forward to a turkey dinner with all the fixings (I actually hate turkey). There's no special family holiday meal that we cook for Christmas. Instead its a buffet of mish mashed dishes that we turn into a meal. There is only 1 food that sticks out in my brain as something I look forward to food wise at thanksgiving each year. And that is my Uncles smoked wings. And we didn't even do family thanksgiving this year! But I would have had a few of those this year. 

 

 

So in reality this challenge is more of a "keep doing what I am doing" with 1 goal. But I think that's a great way to start back up here on the forums.

 

 

  • Like 16

"All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given to us." - J.R.R Tolkien

"Progress, not perfection."

"Persist, Pivot, or Concede." - Matthew McConaughey

"Today I will do what others won't, so tomorrow I can accomplish what others can't."

Rants, Thoughts, and Workouts-->Battle Log | The Improvening (Current Challenge)

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1 minute ago, Artemis Prime said:

Welcome back! Congrats on the good year, and confident that you are going to make 2024 even better.

Thanks!

"All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given to us." - J.R.R Tolkien

"Progress, not perfection."

"Persist, Pivot, or Concede." - Matthew McConaughey

"Today I will do what others won't, so tomorrow I can accomplish what others can't."

Rants, Thoughts, and Workouts-->Battle Log | The Improvening (Current Challenge)

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1 minute ago, Salinger said:

Cant wait to see you crush your goals xx

Ditto!

  • Like 1

"All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given to us." - J.R.R Tolkien

"Progress, not perfection."

"Persist, Pivot, or Concede." - Matthew McConaughey

"Today I will do what others won't, so tomorrow I can accomplish what others can't."

Rants, Thoughts, and Workouts-->Battle Log | The Improvening (Current Challenge)

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You are going to kick that 5lb to the curb EASY!!

 

And HELL YES on getting back into the strength work! As much as I love the boxing I do, lifting has a huge place in my heart for a lot of reasons, and I was at my strongest and fittest when I was lifting consistently and also pushing things like proper form and making every rep count.

 

You got this and welcome back!!

Tell me, if you had the strength to take another step, could you do it?

Level ?? Bard & Monk of the Furious Heart

STR.55  DEX.43 STA.48 CON.51 WIS.53 CHA.65

 

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25 minutes ago, shaar said:

You are going to kick that 5lb to the curb EASY!!

 

And HELL YES on getting back into the strength work! As much as I love the boxing I do, lifting has a huge place in my heart for a lot of reasons, and I was at my strongest and fittest when I was lifting consistently and also pushing things like proper form and making every rep count.

 

You got this and welcome back!!

 

Thanks so much! 

 

And it's true strength really is where it is at. I get so caught up in all the things, keeping things simple and focused is a big thing I am pushing for now. I love moving heavy stuff around. I am looking more into how to do that effectively and improve. How to make sure the exercise is doing EXACTLY what it is supposed to do.

  • Like 2

"All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given to us." - J.R.R Tolkien

"Progress, not perfection."

"Persist, Pivot, or Concede." - Matthew McConaughey

"Today I will do what others won't, so tomorrow I can accomplish what others can't."

Rants, Thoughts, and Workouts-->Battle Log | The Improvening (Current Challenge)

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2 minutes ago, Elastigirl said:

Welcome back! Cheering you on!

Thanks its good to see you!

  • Like 1

"All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given to us." - J.R.R Tolkien

"Progress, not perfection."

"Persist, Pivot, or Concede." - Matthew McConaughey

"Today I will do what others won't, so tomorrow I can accomplish what others can't."

Rants, Thoughts, and Workouts-->Battle Log | The Improvening (Current Challenge)

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4 minutes ago, athousandwords said:

Here to cheer you on as you hit that 300# goal!

 

Happy Season 9 GIF by The Office

 

Thanks I appreciate it!

"All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given to us." - J.R.R Tolkien

"Progress, not perfection."

"Persist, Pivot, or Concede." - Matthew McConaughey

"Today I will do what others won't, so tomorrow I can accomplish what others can't."

Rants, Thoughts, and Workouts-->Battle Log | The Improvening (Current Challenge)

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4 hours ago, cn3wton said:

I had tried to get back into the gym doing all these workouts and cardio things and I hated it. I missed workout after workout because I just didn't want to do it. I loved CrossFit before when I was in better shape because I SUPPLEMENTED my own strength work/strongman training with CrossFit to improve my endurance.

I am a lifelong subscriber to the philosophy that the best workout is the one you'll do.  Well done recognizing that it was the workouts that were the problem, not working out.

 

4 hours ago, cn3wton said:

But for me right now it is just NOT WORTH IT. Why would I eat something that isn't going to help me towards my current goal, when it's just a momentary happiness. I will eat that piece of pie in at most a handful of minutes.

This is an epic realization.  I kind of want to reflect on what is/is not worth it to me right now.

 

4 hours ago, cn3wton said:

I am now down to 305 pounds. I will end this year below 300lbs. If I have already lost at least 85lbs five more is NOTHING. There's no reason why I can't. it's just that simple.

Get it!

  • Like 2

Life before Death

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10 hours ago, cn3wton said:

So in reality this challenge is more of a "keep doing what I am doing" with 1 goal. But I think that's a great way to start back up here on the forums.

 

Agreed! Welcome back, and can't wait to see you crush it in the new year!

RES...and I want to live days worth dying for

Current: RES: SET but not always ready

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Growth happens when you care more about the well being of your future self than the comfort of your present self!

"Pass on what you have learned. Strength, mastery. But weakness, folly, failure also. Yes, failure most of all. The greatest teacher, failure is." -Yoda

 

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Welcome back and following.  300 pounds is going to eat dirt!  

You Got This Do It GIF by iQiyi

  • Like 2

“You can’t wait until life isn’t hard anymore before you decide to be happy” -Nightbirde

 “Dreams do not come true all by themselves. They are nourished by the bounty of hard work”  -Unknown Disney Imagineer

 

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Following!!

Past Challenges: #1, #2#3#4#5#6#7#8#9#10#11#12#13#14#15#16

Current Challenge: #17

 

“Finish each day and be done with it. You have done what you could. Some blunders and absurdities no doubt crept in; forget them as soon as you can. Tomorrow is a new day. You shall begin it serenely and with too high a spirit to be encumbered with your old nonsense.” Ralph Waldo Emerson

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17 hours ago, Everstorm said:

This is an epic realization.  I kind of want to reflect on what is/is not worth it to me right now.

 

I spoke with someone in depth about this last night in fact. 

 

I said to her something along the lines of "Yes a piece of pie won't kill me. But after about 2 minutes and that is done I will spend HOURS thinking about how I should not have had that pie. I'm not saying that is the right mindset at all, but I know me and I know that will happen. And that is NOT a healthy relationship with food. So in the end I wont really enjoy the pie at all, so why even bother? I want to work on this mental relationship with food as it is certainly okay to eat foods that taste good and  you enjoy from time to time. But where I am right now on my journey is not the time to try to improve that too."

 

Be all end all, my relationship with food is horrendous. I can't fix that AND how I eat AND working out AND setting routines AND ETC. 

  • Like 4

"All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given to us." - J.R.R Tolkien

"Progress, not perfection."

"Persist, Pivot, or Concede." - Matthew McConaughey

"Today I will do what others won't, so tomorrow I can accomplish what others can't."

Rants, Thoughts, and Workouts-->Battle Log | The Improvening (Current Challenge)

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15 hours ago, Jackdaw said:

You've got your eyes on the goal, a realistic plan and a good attitude! I believe you can do it. Cheering you on! 

 

Thanks it is greatly appreciated!

 

14 hours ago, Stronkey Kong said:

Lol.  My goal is to not go over 300 lbs this christmas. 

 

Rooting for ya!

 

 

 

Everyone's goals are their own, I believe you can do it!

 

13 hours ago, Tanktimus the Encourager said:

Following.

 

Good to have you here Tank!

 

11 hours ago, RES said:

Agreed! Welcome back, and can't wait to see you crush it in the new year!

 

Thanks good to see you!

 

10 hours ago, Sepherina said:

Welcome back and following.  300 pounds is going to eat dirt!  

You Got This Do It GIF by iQiyi

 

Thank you and thank you for the encouraging gif!

 

9 hours ago, Sovalis said:

Following!!

 

Thanks!

  • Like 2

"All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given to us." - J.R.R Tolkien

"Progress, not perfection."

"Persist, Pivot, or Concede." - Matthew McConaughey

"Today I will do what others won't, so tomorrow I can accomplish what others can't."

Rants, Thoughts, and Workouts-->Battle Log | The Improvening (Current Challenge)

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11/28

 

Was an excellent day nutrition wise.

 

I knew I was going to be tired being out late Monday helping a friend with project testing, I can honestly say I recovered far better than I ever have. So things are working in that regard! It used to be if I didn't get AT LEAST 8 hours of sleep I would not be able to function. I had maybe 5-6 and was okay. Not a good habit but sometimes things like that happen and being able to function is a huge plus.

 

After work I met up with my cousin to get some photos done for my dating profile since the ones there are so old and not great. Definitely not something I would have done not too long ago and died of embarrassment. She refused to take money for it so I took her to dinner instead. Crushed the nutrition by getting steak and veggies. Wasn't even TEMPTED by any of the other stuff which felt great. She has always been more like a sister to me as all my cousins on my moms side grew up together. Many of us within a mile of each other! It was nice to open up about things and it was great for both of us. She had things she wanted to talk about and so did I. I dropped her off at home and felt so happy that I had done it. I need to make a point to see her a bit more! 

 

I did not go to the gym. After running around after work and the increasingly bad weather I made a judgement call to not go do accessory work at PF today. Which was always intended to be secondary to the primary strength days. But now I am a bit bummed I missed it! But it's not beating myself up over it because I missed a day, instead it's more man I want to get back in and do that workout. Another good mental shift with my relationship with the gym that I am very excited about.

 

All in all the routine I am settling into is working and I can't be happier. One of the biggest bonuses was starting to wake up to leave for work at 5:00 AM at the latest. With my commute on most days I get there around 6:30 am. This means I get out of work much earlier and have time for myself and other things at the end of the day. Which has been huge on easing the burnout side of my life.

 

I think that's about it. On to another great day!

 

 

  • Like 9

"All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given to us." - J.R.R Tolkien

"Progress, not perfection."

"Persist, Pivot, or Concede." - Matthew McConaughey

"Today I will do what others won't, so tomorrow I can accomplish what others can't."

Rants, Thoughts, and Workouts-->Battle Log | The Improvening (Current Challenge)

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47 minutes ago, cn3wton said:

But it's not beating myself up over it because I missed a day, instead it's more man I want to get back in and do that workout. Another good mental shift with my relationship with the gym that I am very excited about.

 

YESSSS. This is kind of where I'm at right now too and isn't it such an awesome shift to experience??  I'm happy for you!!

 

And congrats on a productive day too!

  • Like 1

Tell me, if you had the strength to take another step, could you do it?

Level ?? Bard & Monk of the Furious Heart

STR.55  DEX.43 STA.48 CON.51 WIS.53 CHA.65

 

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16 minutes ago, shaar said:

 

YESSSS. This is kind of where I'm at right now too and isn't it such an awesome shift to experience??  I'm happy for you!!

 

And congrats on a productive day too!

 

Yes it is and thank you!

"All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given to us." - J.R.R Tolkien

"Progress, not perfection."

"Persist, Pivot, or Concede." - Matthew McConaughey

"Today I will do what others won't, so tomorrow I can accomplish what others can't."

Rants, Thoughts, and Workouts-->Battle Log | The Improvening (Current Challenge)

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Sounds like an awesome start to the challenge - you're killing it! I love the idea of starting work early and getting to leave early. Especially this time of year when it gets dark so early, leaving at 5pm makes it feel like your day is completely over. 

  • Like 1

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12 minutes ago, athousandwords said:

Sounds like an awesome start to the challenge - you're killing it! I love the idea of starting work early and getting to leave early. Especially this time of year when it gets dark so early, leaving at 5pm makes it feel like your day is completely over. 

 

Absolutely it has been a huge game changer!

  • Like 2

"All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given to us." - J.R.R Tolkien

"Progress, not perfection."

"Persist, Pivot, or Concede." - Matthew McConaughey

"Today I will do what others won't, so tomorrow I can accomplish what others can't."

Rants, Thoughts, and Workouts-->Battle Log | The Improvening (Current Challenge)

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