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Infiltration: Stage 1


obax

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This assassin recruit has been given the assignment to infiltrate the authorities and join their ranks, to better her chances of achieving world domination, or a fulfilling career, whichever comes first.

 

Obstacle The First - The PREP Test

 

This is the test wannabe cops must pass to even be considered for hiring by any police forces in my province. There's a physical component as well as a written/aptitude portion. I'm not so worried about the latter, I'm able to get practice versions of the written and video portions, and will do so closer to the test date. The former scares me a bit, or, more specifically, the part where you have to jump a wall and the beep test scare me a bit.

 

All my goals for this challenge will help me move towards being able to pass this test, either directly or indirectly. I will not likely be capable of passing the test by the end of the 6 weeks, but I will be several steps closer to being able to.

 

Goal #1 - BEEP! (+2 STA; bonus +0.5 for every extra 1/2 level achieved)

 

I tried the 20m beep test a while back and achieved level 4. My goal is to increase this score by one full level by the end of 6 weeks. The ultimate goal is level 6.5 or higher, but I don't think I can improve that much in 6 weeks. Increasing one level seems achievable, and more than one level a bonus. To achieve this goal, I will be running intervals at an indoor track at least 2x per week, consisting of a warmup (~5 mins jogging), 6x 30 sec hard run/1.5 minutes slow run (to be increased to 1 min hard running/1.5 min slow running as soon as I feel able), then a cooldown (~5 mins jogging). This will be followed by at least 4x 100m sprint/100m walk, but this may be reduced/eliminated depending on how my shin splint-like injury progresses.

 

Goal #2 - Stretch, goddammit! (+2 DEX)

 

I'm terrible at stretching, meaning I'm terrible at making myself do it, and also terrible at actually doing it because I'm so inflexible. So. I will stretch at least once per day, even on my day(s) off. I will also attend at least one yoga class (with my sister to hold my hand, yes I'm a sissy), either at the gym or at the yoga place my sister goes to. An offshoot of this goal is to practice some simple balance yoga poses as part of my stretching routine (even if the people at the gym look at me funny when I'm pretending to be an airplane), because my balance is terrible.

 

Goal #3 - Wheeeeeeeee(t) (+1 WIS, +1 CON)

 

I'm intrigued by the idea behind the paleo diet. I'm not, however, a believer in denying oneself anything, but rather in being mindful of what, when, how, and how much one eats. I'm in full favour of limiting (even severely limiting) the intake of things, such as refined sugar and gluten, that cause so many people so many problems. So I'm starting with wheat. I don't feel I'm prepared to go fully gluten-free, as this seems like a lot of work (I'm sure it's not really a lot of work once you get used to it, but I'm a baby step kinda gal), so I'm going for obvious things like bread and pasta. I will cut out other grains when I can, and try to figure out some of the things to look for on labels that are code for 'wheat' or 'wheat-related products' (and actually look for them). I will also do some research about things I eat on a regular basis (like oats and yoghurt) to determine what they do and do not do for me nutritionally, and if there are alternatives that would be better and make me equally as happy to eat. I will then seek out these alternatives and try to incorporate them into my life.

 

I recognize that this goal is a bit vague. This is not so much a measurable goal as one that I will feel I succeeded at or not by the end of 6 weeks. I don't anticipate eating absolutely zero wheat during the 6 weeks, but there will be a tipping point beyond which I'll consider myself unsuccessful. I'm generally a self-aware and honest person, and not afraid to admit failure or fault, so I feel I'll be able to accurately judge myself on this one. If week one goes poorly, I'll try to quantify this a little more, but for now I'm satisfied with this.

 

Life Goal - Where'd you get those peepers? (+1 WIS)

 

Part of the PREP test is a vision test, which I'm fairly certain I will not pass. So I'm determined to go to my eye doctor with the requirements, get him to tell me if I meet them or not, and when he tells me I don't, I'll ask him about laser eye surgery. I've been avoiding this for some time now, because I'm horribly afraid he'll tell me there's no way to fix my vision enough to meet the requirements and I'm SOL, and I have no idea how I'd deal with that (not well, most likely). But this is something I need to do, and should have done a long time ago before I got my mind really set on this path. If he tells me laser surgery will work for me, I will A) start saving money; and B) contact a police recruiter to get it sorted out exactly what I need to do (I know there are extra forms to fill out) and when. I'm not currently going to think about what I will do if he says it won't work for me, because I honestly have no idea and the unknown is scary.

 

And that right there is my first ever 6 week challenge. Yikes. I mean, woo hoo! Officially starting Monday, as I've had a week off of running (both sick and injured) and want to ease back into the intervals.

Dare mighty things

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Woo hoo indeed, nice to have you there. :) Seems like you know what you want and you know how to reach it, so I bet you'll have a very successful first challenge.

 

Good luck!

Nuala, level 13 Robot mistress of pain, Assassin Guild leader

 

First journey: The Rise and fall of an Assassin

#1, #2, #3, #4, #5, #6, #7, #8, #9, #10, #11, #12, #13

Second journey: Crawling back

#1

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Great goals and good luck on this challenge!

 

For your eye surgery option perhaps maybe you'll get it kinda thing:

 

I went to MEPS (I was all set to ship out for OCS for the Marine Corps) and failed because of my vision. I was notified that I had to get eye surgery in order to pass. Thus I did my research. I shall pass this unto you!

 

You CANNOT get Lasik (at least for the military and therefore I wouldn't recommend it as a police officer). Why, you ask? Lasik is done by peeling back the flap of your epithileal layer of the eye, fixing the retina, then letting the peel set again and scar over. After just a few days you are 20/20 and the scar goes away with blinking. THE CATCH: If you ever get punched in the face, hit in the eye, a beareagle attacks you (okay maybe not that) it can dislodge the flap and you will be blind until they fix it.

 

You CAN get PRK. PRK is the *original* Lasik eye surgery. It is more permanent and dependable but therefore takes more time to heal. How it works kinda: Instead of peeling back your epithelial layer that layer is taken off completely and the eye is fixed. Your eye is made of cells that rapidly regenerate so within a week's time the layer taken off grows back in and massive blinking, lots of eye drops and a few weeks later the scar is completely gone and you are 20/20 (or in my case I expect to maybe get to 20/15). HOWEVER: how long it takes you to heal depends on your genes. I personally healed fast but didn't get 20/20 for like eight months! My friend did PRK after me (same doc) and healed fast and was 20/20 in just two weeks.

 

As for paying for it I got a great deal from CareCredit (from  GECapital Bank) of 0% for  I think 18months. I paid I think $2,800 for my surgery.

Surge, Level 3 Wood Elf RangerSTR 13.5 | DEX 4.5 | STA 9.5 | CON 7.5 | WIS 9.5 | CHA 5"Surge Supra : Rise Above"

 

Operation: Just Do It

"When running up a hill it's alright to give up as many times as you wish; as long as your feet keep moving."

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Hey, thanks for that info! I'm not one to jump into something like that without thoroughly investigating it all. And I would definitely talk to a police recruiter about what is and is not allowed in that respect. But it's good to know all that going into it, so I have some idea what my eye doc is talking about. And really I think I just need my distance vision to be perfect, I can have pretty poor reading vision, I think (at least, that's what makes sense to me considering the nature of the job. The eye doc will have to confirm).

 

As I stand right now, my reading vision is perfect, and my distance vision is not but is not terrible. I can function just fine without glasses if I have to, but legally I need them to drive (just barely, I almost passed the vision test for my license with no glasses on...). So I'm hoping those are all factors in favour of me being able to get what I need rather than being SOL...

Dare mighty things

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You're welcome :) if your vision really isn't that bad you'll recover much faster than I did. Keep us updated I'd love to know what ends up happening!

Surge, Level 3 Wood Elf RangerSTR 13.5 | DEX 4.5 | STA 9.5 | CON 7.5 | WIS 9.5 | CHA 5"Surge Supra : Rise Above"

 

Operation: Just Do It

"When running up a hill it's alright to give up as many times as you wish; as long as your feet keep moving."

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Good luck on your challenge! I like the wheat reduction one. I'm really not that big of a bread/pasta person myself, but they are just such constant staples, even if I don't go out of my way to eat them.  

rybo, level 4 Human assassinSTR 16|DEX 7.5|STA 9|CON 12|WIS 8.5|CHA 5 

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...but they are just such constant staples, even if I don't go out of my way to eat them.  

 

Yeah, that's my main problem too, it's not hard to cut them out, but I find it hard to eat enough other stuff to effectively replace what I'm no longer eating. And my living situation is such that I don't often cook dinner for myself, so if it's pasta for dinner, it's pasta for dinner. Part of my goal is, in a case like that, to make a point of fixing myself something different, even if it's just some eggs and yoghurt and veggies/salad (which is actually a really awesome meal in my books...) Where I work has few healthy options for meals too (a drug store, which claims to care about your health, then goes and sells all the crap food that lead to that blood pressure medication in the first place), so I'm trying to bring my own food more often, and if I have to buy some frozen thing, pick one with rice rather than pasta.

 

I'm sort of hoping that a nice side effect of this goal will be to increase my fruit/veggie intake, because I have to replace that bread with something or I'm gonna be hungry. I thought about making 'eat more veggies' my goal, but then figured the wheat one might lead to the veggie one sort of by default and went with that instead.

Dare mighty things

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Good luck with the PREP test preparation, it is great that you have something concrete to work towards! My partner is in Police Foundations right now and they focus the gym classes on passing the PREP test. One bit of advice, watch your form. The testers have the right to take away points if they feel the form is not correct in some portions of the PREP test. 

Level 1


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Food Goal #1: 5 Servings of Fruits/Veg for 30 Days


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Fitness Goal #1: 5000 Steps for 30 Days


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Life Goal #1: Keep a Room in Peak Shape for 30 Days


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That's a good tip I didn't know about, but I have no idea what form I'm supposed to be following... Hmmm, now I'll have to figure out a way to find that out. I'm going for the Toronto police force, and they give you a free practice run of the whole test, so hopefully I'll at least find out about form then.

Dare mighty things

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Welcome to the ranks!  Rooting for your success with the application to the force (infiltrate and overcome!).  Eye surgery always seemed kind of radical to me, but then "surgery" in general gives me the willies.  Have you considered just memorizing the eye chart?  When the medic/doc asks me to read the smallest line I can see I always start with "made in China"...

 

7 foot walls give lots of people trouble.  The trick is getting your center of mass above the top as quickly as possible and then getting your leg on top for a roll over.  You can do a muscle up in a pinch if you've developed that kind of strength, but you'll do better to use your momentum from your approach run.  Be mindful that it's easy for your lead foot to slip on the wooden wall if your sole is damp or muddy, or has a poor tread.  The chain link fence will usually have a spot that's got an impression from where most people plant their foot.  Usually somewhere near center mass.  This can work for you or against you.  If it's deep it will give you a "step".  If it's shallow it might cause slippage.  Just look for it and decide accordingly.  In a pinch you can climb it by putting your fingers and toes between the links.  Make sure to plan your landing on the far side, a bad drop might roll your ankle.

Cro Magnon Assassin
 

 

 

"Hold my beer and watch this..."

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Hey hey! Nice goals you have there! You shouldn't be so hard on yourself when it comes to trying new things like yoga or running, After all, you've got this whole community behind you! I'll hold your hand during yoga, if I could :P

Level 25 Final Fantasy Rebel

My Epic Quest | My Journey | Currently on the Trial of Orthos
Str: 60 | Dex: 23 | Sta: 66 | Con: 28 | Wis: 55 | Cha: 14

Goals for 2021:

Spoiler
  • Build my brother a Destiny 2 Lamp
  • Learn how to do a Handstand
  • Play 1 song on the acoustic guitar
  • Clean up the Christmas Decorations and finish setting up my apartment (hang things up, plus some other few things that need to be organized)
  • Re-introduce Pull-ups into my routine
  • Build a shelving unit next to my Desk

"No matter what, if you can hold your head up high, you've done the right thing."

"When you stand with your family, your family stands with you."

"Write what needs to be written."

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7 foot walls give lots of people trouble.  The trick is getting your center of mass above the top as quickly as possible and then getting your leg on top for a roll over.  You can do a muscle up in a pinch if you've developed that kind of strength, but you'll do better to use your momentum from your approach run.  Be mindful that it's easy for your lead foot to slip on the wooden wall if your sole is damp or muddy, or has a poor tread.  The chain link fence will usually have a spot that's got an impression from where most people plant their foot.  Usually somewhere near center mass.  This can work for you or against you.  If it's deep it will give you a "step".  If it's shallow it might cause slippage.  Just look for it and decide accordingly.  In a pinch you can climb it by putting your fingers and toes between the links.  Make sure to plan your landing on the far side, a bad drop might roll your ankle.

 

Fortunately I don't have to jump a 7 foot wall in my test, only a 4(?) foot one (whatever 1.2 metres is in feet...). Not that I don't appreciate the tips, being able to climb a 7 foot solid wall would be awesome. But I'm far, far off from that. And to answer your question about memorizing the eye chart, I've considered it (semi-seriously), but if I got caught I'd be in a lot of trouble, I imagine... Laser eye surgery would not be something I'd normally consider (though I do like the idea of not having to buy contacts any more), but I gotta do what I gotta do, and the way I see it, this is something I gotta do.

 

Hey hey! Nice goals you have there! You shouldn't be so hard on yourself when it comes to trying new things like yoga or running, After all, you've got this whole community behind you! I'll hold your hand during yoga, if I could :tongue:

 

Dawwwww, thanks! I've done a lot of new things over the last while, so I'm getting better at it. I'm just glad my sister is so willing to be my hand holder, I dunno what I'd do without her. Trouble is, she's not interested in EVERYTHING I'm interested in, so I'm gonna have to man up eventually if I ever want to, say, start climbing (which I do). 

Dare mighty things

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Early start on a couple of goals: no (obvious) wheat today. There may have been gluten or something in the salad dressing, but like I said, baby steps. I'll worry about the code words on the labels at a later date.

 

Also, I stretched! On my day off! Yay! Admittedly, I only got my legs/hips stretched, not my upper body. I ran out of time before work (read: I was lazy for most of the day), but since my legs/hips are the location of most of my current aches and pains, I figure that's the important place to start.

 

Challenge to start officially tomorrow. I'm actually excited, which, if you knew me well, would weird you out.

Dare mighty things

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Stretching is one of my weak areas, too. I used to be crazy flexible when I was younger, but now I groan whenever I have to bend over to pick up a pencil. I may have to do that with you.

I've been doing a half-assed paleo diet for a while. I've realized I used to eat so much wheat because it was quick and convenient. Woke up late and need a quick lunch for work? Throw on some pasta or make a sandwich  No time for breakfast or don't feel like cooking a snack? Get some toast. So one of the keys to kicking it, I think, is to make sure you have lots of quick-cooking, convenient things in your pantry and fridge.

 

I'm rooting for ya. You can do this!

Ember Phoenix
Mk 0 Bionic Assassin
STR 0 | DEX 0 | STA 0 | CON 0 | WIS 0 | CHA 0

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Thanks! I'm already having a hard time thinking of things not wheat based that I can grab and go. I work until midnight most nights, and I'm often hungry when I get home. In the past I'd grab a few crackers just to fill up my stomach a bit so I could sleep, but now I actually gotta think about it. Cheese would be easy, but probably not so healthy. I had an egg last night, but I already eat a lot of eggs, and I feel like eating 4 or more in a day is a bit much. I'm just gonna have to work at it, I feel like it'll still be a success even if I eat a bit of wheat now and then, because for me it's as much about the learning as the doing. I have a feeling I'll be upping my oat intake, which just fine by me...

Dare mighty things

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Raw veggies and fruits are the ultimate "grab and go" foods.  Zero prep (except rinsing) and they tend to fill you up fast.  Not as satisfying as grains, probably because they digest well, but there's no way around that.  Cheese is a good filler too, more satisfying that fruits and veggies.

Cro Magnon Assassin
 

 

 

"Hold my beer and watch this..."

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First official day of my challenge. I met the 'no wheat' goal, I think, though there could have been flour in the sauce of the leftovers I had for dinner. I'm going to pretend there wasn't, but it was awfully thick for that to actually be true... Today was a gym day, so no running, but I'll be running tomorrow. And I did stretch thoroughly after my workout, it felt grand! I really should be doing it after work too, but it's hard to get geared up for, like, 30 mins of stretching at midnight......

 

I'll be bugging my sister about a yoga class starting tomorrow or so. And I'm still afraid of the eye doctor, I'll work on that...

Dare mighty things

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Keep it up! I don't know if I'm liberal about diets but havin a little wheat in the sauce doesn't seem like it matters too much. I'm sure that stretching felt amazing. You don't have to do 30 mins when you get home from work do you? Maybe shorten it?

Surge, Level 3 Wood Elf RangerSTR 13.5 | DEX 4.5 | STA 9.5 | CON 7.5 | WIS 9.5 | CHA 5"Surge Supra : Rise Above"

 

Operation: Just Do It

"When running up a hill it's alright to give up as many times as you wish; as long as your feet keep moving."

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I'm not too worried about flour in sauce either, hence the pretending it didn't exist. I'm a big believer in mindfulness, though, so I think it's important to acknowledge that it probably did exist and I'm choosing to ignore it. I'm trying to teach my sister about mindful eating, but it's hard because it comes naturally to me and not to her...

 

30 mins might be a bit of an exaggeration, but if I want to stretch all the things that need it after being on my feet for 8 hours, then it's close. I hold each stretch for between 1 and 2 minutes, and there are minimum 9 stretches I should be doing, 6 of which are legs so require 2 'reps' (for lack of a better term).

 

I suppose I could just do a mini version after work, and maybe I'll give that a try tonight, but I find if I only hold something for, say, 30 seconds or so, I don't get a very deep stretch. I guess some is better than none, though, so I'm gonna try to make this an unofficial add-on to my goals.

 

Incidentally, I like how 'responding to you' turned into 'convincing myself to actually stretch after work'. I guess that's why this place is so great!

Dare mighty things

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Why are you scared of the eye doctor?

Level 25 Final Fantasy Rebel

My Epic Quest | My Journey | Currently on the Trial of Orthos
Str: 60 | Dex: 23 | Sta: 66 | Con: 28 | Wis: 55 | Cha: 14

Goals for 2021:

Spoiler
  • Build my brother a Destiny 2 Lamp
  • Learn how to do a Handstand
  • Play 1 song on the acoustic guitar
  • Clean up the Christmas Decorations and finish setting up my apartment (hang things up, plus some other few things that need to be organized)
  • Re-introduce Pull-ups into my routine
  • Build a shelving unit next to my Desk

"No matter what, if you can hold your head up high, you've done the right thing."

"When you stand with your family, your family stands with you."

"Write what needs to be written."

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Why are you scared of the eye doctor?

I'm not really scared of him, per se (he's actually a family friend). I'm scared he'll tell me I can't have laser eye surgery for some reason, or that it won't give me perfect distance vision, which is required if I'm going to be a cop, which is why I'm doing this 'getting in shape' thing in the first place. I should've done it before I really had my heart set on this particular career change path, but I really gotta do it before I take my test.

Today's workout: A mixed bag at the track. Minor technical snafus set a poor beginning tone, and then the intervals were HARD. But I did 'em, with only minor shin pain. Stretched a bit, then did 4x Soccer Field Sprints (SFS), so called because it's from one end of the soccer field around which the track goes to the other, with a walk back across between sprints. It's a bit more than 100m I think, but the artificial turf is oh so cushy. I think I'm gonna try doing sprints on this whenever I can to help mitigate the shin pain. I really like sprinting, so after the 'enh' intervals, it felt good.

More thorough lower body stretching when I got home from the track, no time for the upper body. I cooked myself lunch for tomorrow instead of stretching after work today.

Tomorrow I volunteer all day in a city 3 hours from my house. I have yet to make it to the gym after a volunteer day like this, so tomorrow will be a first, even if I have to go to the co-ed gym and work out with all those sweaty guys. I took Sunday off this week, so no more days off 'til next week!

Oh, and turns out there wasn't any flour in my sauce yesterday, it was apples and the pectin therein that made it so thick! So yay! But then I read the ingredients on my sausages I'm cooking for the next couple days and there's wheat crumbs in 'em, so boo to that. But I'm eating them anyway. I'm calling it a mindful choice to eat the food I have.

Dare mighty things

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A side note on not eating wheat: I don't notice myself wanting it most of the time, and it's been pretty easy to just avoid it (crumbs in my sausage notwithstanding...) (wait, that sounds a bit dirty... It's not, I promise...). But I do find myself drooling a bit when people at work buy pasta and bread. Like some guys bought a bunch of those Sidekick package dealies, which I don't even like, but all I could think was 'Man, I could really go for one of those'. But then they left and so did the thought to eat them. It's not a challenge, really, I have enough willpower to just say no if it was presented to me, and I'm not about to snatch a customer's food off the checkout counter and run like a maniac into the back and start stuffing my face. I just thought it was interesting that I'm reacting this way.

Dare mighty things

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Not counting my sausages, no wheat today, and some glorious stretching after my bodyweight workout at the gym. I timed it all this time to make sure I was being even. AND I discovered the T.V. near the TRX frame that's always tuned to a news channel has a clock on it that shows seconds, so I have an accurate way of measuring my dead hang. That's not challenge related, but I was excited so I had to share. 

 

Running again tomorrow. Hopefully my technical issues are smoothed out and it goes better. My shin was a bit sore today, so I may skip the sprints if it's still bothering me tomorrow, though that's the part I like the most. Then yoga with my sister, yay! Lookit me, meeting a goal! Woo!!

 

On the down side, my cold seems like it could be making a comeback. I'm hoping my immune system can hold the line...

 

Still scared of the eye doctor. Next week maybe I won't be so much of a baby. Maybe...

Dare mighty things

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Haha glad your response convinced you! Also, great food choices! I find myself feeling the same way. Especially with sweets and it gets worse after I eat an apple (I guess because it's sweet too?).

 

I'm sorry that your shins hurt. A friend of mine who runs mucho marathons took the time to teach me how to run a year or so ago and I stopped ever having pain running. The trick he told me was to always kinda land on the instep of the foot (where the ball is, is that the instep?), keep back straight and pump arms. I found that by landing on that instep or whatever it's called I got no tension hitting my knees and no unneeded impact went to my shins.

 

Hope that helps you. I think Steve has a beginners running guide on NF too, I haven't read it but I imagine it'll have the same form?

 

Hope your cold goes away!

Surge, Level 3 Wood Elf RangerSTR 13.5 | DEX 4.5 | STA 9.5 | CON 7.5 | WIS 9.5 | CHA 5"Surge Supra : Rise Above"

 

Operation: Just Do It

"When running up a hill it's alright to give up as many times as you wish; as long as your feet keep moving."

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