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Bean

Bean's Grinder Challenge

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Another month, another challenge.

This one is going to look remarkably similar to the previous one as I am really happy with my current programming and making good strides - although I did struggle somewhat on my 5/3/1 programme.

So, without further ado, here are the strength/fitness goals for the challenge:

1) 5/3/1 programme - complete cycle three, which started today. The final weights in the last week of the cycle are OHP 65kg, Deadlift 145kg, Bench 95kg, Squat 125kg. My aim is to complete 3 good reps of each. Have to do one rep and try for as many as possible, I dediced on a +2 target. Reward: STR +2, STA +2

2) Kettlebell snatch. Carryover from previous challenge. 5x10 snatches each arm with 24kg belle. Reward: STR +1 STA +1 CON +2

3) Swim challenge. In honour of my son learning butterfly, I feel obliged to try this too. Therefore, weekly swim must contain at least two full individual medleys (4x25m). Reward: DEX +3

And, finally, my life goal challenge. This one is going to be fun. I love to read, but can't seem to find enough time. So, the challenge here is to read at least 5 books (one of which must be non-fiction) through the duration of this challenge. Reward: CHA +3 WIS +1.

Looking forward to it.

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Workout today:

OHP: 7 Reps @ 60kg, Deadlift 7 reps @ 130kg. Felt really good to be back in the gym after a week off. I was going to start with a deload week, but I was feeling good, so I started with week 1 of my cycle.

Should be done on a Monday, but Monday was a holiday here and I was still away. Had an amazing weekend and am slowly getting more proficient at archery which I tried again this weekend. Lots of fun.

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Wow! Your OHP is really great ! Any tips for plateau breakers? I am currently stuck on 120lbs. I do 5 reps for it to "count" as a PR though. :)

Thanks. OHP still has a long way to go to get up to bodyweight of 90kg. No special tips, at the moment I am just sticking to the 5/3/1 programme to see where that takes me. JDanger has posted a few tips about OHP and breaking plateaus. If I remember, he encourages you to mix up the reps and sets. e.g. if you are doing 5x5, try working to 3x10 or 10x3 with the same weights and then try moving up. Also, micro-weights if you have access are really helpful.

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Love the book goal! Have you seen that there is an NF book club starting up soon?

What kinds of titles are you interested in using as you 5 books?

Quite honestly, I haven't really thought about what I intend to read. Current unread books on my kindle include Elantris (Brandon Sanderson), The Legion (Simon Scarrow) and The Ninth District (Douglas Dorow). I also have a bunch of unread books on the bookshelf - one called The Language of Leaders (probably my non-fiction book for this list) and then random others including the new Mark Haddon book and Kim (Rudyard Kipling). So, at this stage, I figure I am simply going to pick up whichever ones appeals at the time and read that. I generally save my kindle books for when travelling.

Very cool on the NF book-club, I will keep watching the bulletin boards.

Exercise today:

Two consecutive days of gym is tough! Needed to do it as Monday was a holiday and I take my boy swimming tomorrow - can't mess with that programme.

Did squats (110kg x 7 reps) and Bench (85kg x 7 reps) and then some Kroc rows and hanging leg raises for assistance work. Felt good but my muscles are definitely protesting now.

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Holy moly, how did I miss your thread. So many threads! Fantastic goals as always Bean. I've never heard of any of those books on your virtual bookshelf, after I finish my reading goal this challenge, I may take a peek at those.

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Thanks. OHP still has a long way to go to get up to bodyweight of 90kg. No special tips, at the moment I am just sticking to the 5/3/1 programme to see where that takes me. JDanger has posted a few tips about OHP and breaking plateaus. If I remember, he encourages you to mix up the reps and sets. e.g. if you are doing 5x5, try working to 3x10 or 10x3 with the same weights and then try moving up. Also, micro-weights if you have access are really helpful.

Excellent ! Thanks for the directions ! I think I am going to stick to my 5X5 program for the next 6 weeks since that is aligned to my current goals but if I am still plateauing then, I shall try these suggestions.

I read somewhere on the interwebz that the OHP is the hardest thing to raise but have you noticed that superheroes are always OHP'ing the villains? :)

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Excellent ! Thanks for the directions ! I think I am going to stick to my 5X5 program for the next 6 weeks since that is aligned to my current goals but if I am still plateauing then, I shall try these suggestions.

I read somewhere on the interwebz that the OHP is the hardest thing to raise but have you noticed that superheroes are always OHP'ing the villains? :)

They're probably using push press. :) Still nothing to sneeze at though.

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I think being able to OHP over bodyweight is a genuine mutant power.

Awesome goals. I hear you on the not having time to read. I'm still trying to finish Let the Right One In. Once I start reading it's easy to keep going, it's the starting that's problematic.

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Swimming this morning.

Man, why did I set a goal to swim butterfly. I was trashed after two IMs. Did 72 lengths today - just had no juice left after the IM to get to my usual 80 or 90 lengths. My son was great - he must have done about 45-50 lengths this morning. He is really loving the gym time with dad.

So, in honour of the NF book club, I downloaded 1Q84 last night. Read the first two chapter and am intrigued but it looks like it will be heavy going. Also read some of Elantris - a weird story but I like his writing style. So those are my first two books on the list to be devoured.

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Double post mania.

I think I would be very happy if my superhero power was a bodyweight OHP!

Edited by Bean
Double post ...

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Bean has been struck down with the flu - just when coming into summer. Not pretty.

Can't breathe properly with horribly blocked nose and so sleep was bad.

Sorry fellow warriors - no burpees for me until I can breathe properly again and am better. Cannot take the risk as it will invariably result in asthma attach and chest infection if I overdo it.

:(:(:(

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Oh no. I'm sorry you're sick! Take some time to get well!

Also, 1Q84 is considered three books - the original Japanese (??) version was three books and when it was translated they made it one. I think you know that - I think you commented on the book club wall if I remember right. But just something ot consider in your "five books" count so the goal stays realistic.

I'm picking up my copy tonight at the library!

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That sucks man! Don't worry about the burpees, just get better quick and you can bring your South African fury out for the later challenges! Hope you get better soon!

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Feeling somewhat better this morning after spending basically the entire weekend in bed feeling sorry for myself. Still have some head-cold left but at least I can breathe properly again.

If I feel better by the end of the day, I may try a very light day in the gym tomorrow. We shall see.

On the plus side, I did get to finish one book (Elantris) over the weekend and make a fairly sizeable dent in 1Q84. I really enjoyed Elantris - very different fantasy story and am starting to get into 1Q84.

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quietly crept back into the gym this morning since I am feeling a lot better.

Still have a bit of a stuffy nose, but no other effects and I am no longer taking any meds.

Was 3 day today and I did squats and OHP. I did 5 reps each on the last last for OHP at 65kg and Squats at 115kg. I followed the "Jack" programme today since I am still recovering from being sick so was done inside 40 minutes. Then I stretched for 20 minutes.

It felt really good to be back in the gym, and Jack is actually pretty cool for that purpose.

I was doing some reflecting over the weekend on why I stuggled so much with squats in the last cycle. I was doing DL on a Monday and squats on a Wednesday. One potential reason is that my body (and particularly my CNS) was still not recovered by the Wednesday and so the squats were just too much additional strain. Squats don't seem to have the same effect on my CNS and so I am going to try switching it up and doing squats on Monday (well Tuesday today due to sickness) and DL on Wednesday. We shall see if that improves things. The squats certainly felt pretty good today although 115kg remains a heavy weight to lift.

Made more progress on 1Q84 last night. No plot spoiler here, but seriously, who devotes an entire chapter to the practice of kicking a guy in the balls? I was curled up in foetal position reading that chapter. I am waiting to see how this fits into the plot. Really strange book.

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Haha. I keep reading stuff about 1Q84 saying it could definitely get to the point much more quickly than it does. My book is STILL laying on my dining room table. I was hoping to finish my bedroom and read in there, but mabye I just need to get to it. That's a mighty big book. And even without having my own balls, I'm not looking forward to a whole chapter on ball-kicking. Ew.

I'm glad you're feeling better! Nothing like a good stretch after being in bed all weekend. I hope your swap of squats with DLs will produce the results you're looking for challenge! (Although, let's be honest, you always have great results! But I get that you know you could be doing something a little different/better and it's good you're trying new stuff.)

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Did the jack edition of 5/3/1 today due to serious time constraints. Bench and DL were done with 5 reps at 90kg and 135kg respectively. DL is almost at the three wheel mark - I think I do that next week.

Squats before DL definitely seems to work better. I don't have these intense pains in my legs such that it is hard to walk. Those are supposed to go away, but I have had them fairly consistently with the 5/3/1 programme. My wife thinks its funny!

Added 13,000lbs for the warriors in our mini-challenge.

Definitely feeling better and still steadily plowing my way through 1Q84 - would not be my first choice book, but I am enjoying it.

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Glad to see you're back in action! And it's a good thing I looked at your thread pre-gym this morning or I wouldn't have known we were tracking tonnage again.

I'm starting 1Q84 today, I had waited until I finished my previous book. I can't say I'm exactly looking forward to a chapter of ball torture, thanks for the heads up there.

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Went for a swim today - the first medley felt better, but the second was pure torture. By the end of the length of butterfly, I feel like I am drowning or close to it. And, to top it off, my son was laughing at me since I looked so awkward. His butterfly is actually starting to look like he knows what he is doing.

Did my 80 lengths, including the mandatory 2 IMs. Took a little longer today for some reason - will have to get some speed in there next week.

Tomorrow morning is a quick kettlebell workout at home and then the boys and I are off for a weekend together to go and hike in the mountains, swim and relax.

Friday's are so much better when they don't have work included in them. Also, Thursdays are so much better when there isn't a friday of work to follow.

So, last night I didn't feel like reading 1Q84. I picked the thinnest classic I could find in our bookshelf. It was only 90 odd pages, but I read it in one sitting (lying in the bath) and really loved it. I read Ernest Hemingway's "The Old Man and the Sea." What an enjoyable book, incredibly well written, really simple but at the same time quite profound. I feel guilty adding it to my challenge, since a 90 page book feels like cheating, but if I don't make it through the others then I am counting this one. It was a good book and did make me think about a few things.

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Went for a swim today - the first medley felt better, but the second was pure torture. By the end of the length of butterfly, I feel like I am drowning or close to it. And, to top it off, my son was laughing at me since I looked so awkward. His butterfly is actually starting to look like he knows what he is doing.

Did my 80 lengths, including the mandatory 2 IMs. Took a little longer today for some reason - will have to get some speed in there next week.

Tomorrow morning is a quick kettlebell workout at home and then the boys and I are off for a weekend together to go and hike in the mountains, swim and relax.

Friday's are so much better when they don't have work included in them. Also, Thursdays are so much better when there isn't a friday of work to follow.

So, last night I didn't feel like reading 1Q84. I picked the thinnest classic I could find in our bookshelf. It was only 90 odd pages, but I read it in one sitting (lying in the bath) and really loved it. I read Ernest Hemingway's "The Old Man and the Sea." What an enjoyable book, incredibly well written, really simple but at the same time quite profound. I feel guilty adding it to my challenge, since a 90 page book feels like cheating, but if I don't make it through the others then I am counting this one. It was a good book and did make me think about a few things.

Truer words have never been spoken.

I like your plan of keeping that book for a buffer, just in case.

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