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Lowenna's Challenge #2


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About me:

I'm working towards being skinnier and healthier, because being squishy is rubbish and being sick all the time is even more rubbish. Recently ex-veggie, recently gym-less and perpetually rubbish at early mornings.

Because I'm currently scales-less I will be measuring to keep track of things. I'll measure today, on the 14th of March and on day 28.

Today's measurements are:

Chest: 39"

Waist: 31"

Hips: 41"

The Goals:

I'm going to be doing the minimum, expected, cool thing, b/c I think that it is a rather awesome idea.

Fitness:

1. c25k

Last challenge I got a bit over ambitious and set running 5k as a goal. I will get there eventually, but it's quite a long way off, so I will be c25k-ing until I succeed.

Minimum - Train 2x per week

Expected - Train 3x per week

Cool - Train 4x per week

2. Callisthenics

The plan is to do a basic callisthenics work out two days on, one day off. This is what it will look like:

4x

10 rotational push ups

10 squats

10 inverted rows

10 lunges with rotation

My targets are push up related b/c I want to improve my upper body strength and b/c push ups are awesome. I'm still on girly knees on the floor push ups so proper push ups are the objective.

Minimum - 1 quality push up with straight legs

Expected - Do at least one set of push ups with straight legs

Cool - Do all 40 push ups with straight legs

3. Climbing

Had an awesome time climbing last Wed, so I want to keep it up. It's an amazing workout which doesn't feel like a workout.

Minimum - go climbing one more time

Expected - get my climbing competency to prove that I can belay properly

Cool - do climbing competency and climb a 6a

4. The Splits

When I say 'do the splits' I mean 'make significant progress towards doing the splits'. I neglected my flexibility last month so this month I'm making it a focus. The plan is to do daily stretching. Right now I'm 9.5 inches away from the floor in front splits and 13 inches away in side splits.

Minimum - Improve 2" on each

Expected - Improve 4" on each

Cool - Improve 8" on each

Diet:

1. No wheat and no dairy

Pretty self-explanatory I think. I'm allowing myself maximum 2 dairy related slips because giving up dairy means giving up chocolate and it's creme egg season.

Minimum - No wheat

Expected - No wheat and no dairy, with 1/2 dairy related fails

Cool - No wheat and no dairy

Life:

1. Write 3,000 words about Hegel and 3,000 words about Logic.

Have three essays to write for university. They are are all due in on May 2nd, but I want to get them done well in advance so I don't have to pull any all nighters (which is my usual strategy). They are one 3,000 word essay on Hegel (it's going to kill me) and two 1,500 word essays on Logic (yummy, logic is my favourite thing).

Minimum - Spend average of 1 hour per day working on essays

Expected - Finish both Logic essays and have a good plan for the Hegel one

Cool - Finish all three essays

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"The cure for anything is salt water - tears, sweat or the sea" - Isak Dinesen

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2. Callisthenics

The plan is to do a basic callisthenics work out two days on, one day off. This is what it will look like:

4x

10 rotational push ups

5 squats

10 inverted rows

5 lunges with rotation

My targets are push up related b/c I want to improve my upper body strength and b/c push ups are awesome. I'm still on girly knees on the floor push ups so proper push ups are the objective.

Minimum - 1 quality push up with straight legs

Expected - Do at least one set of push ups with straight legs

Cool - Do all 40 push ups with straight legs

i like the minimum/expected/cool thing too :)

for this circuit - what about upping the number on squats and lunges?

“There's only one rule that I know of, babies—God damn it, you've got to be kind.”
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for this circuit - what about upping the number on squats and lunges?

I suppose I could, but I'd have to up the number of push ups and rows, b/c I want significantly more work on my upper body than on my lower body. I could do 10 squats and lunges and 15 push ups and inverted rows. Hmmmm...

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"The cure for anything is salt water - tears, sweat or the sea" - Isak Dinesen

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actually, id up the legs and leave the upper body as is.

reasoning: one pushup doesn't equal the same workout as one squat. your legs can handle more (think about the normal use of your legs vs. the normal use of your upper body - you're walking around, going up stairs, squatting down all the time in your basic daily movement, but you're not pushing yourself up normally)

if you look at steve's bodyweight circuits you'll see that he doubles the reps for legs vs. upper body - and thats to get a general all around workout. most bodyweight circuits work that way.

(you can obviously do what you want, just my two cents :) )

“There's only one rule that I know of, babies—God damn it, you've got to be kind.”
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Okay, Spezzy, you've convinced me, I'm putting them up to 10. I must overcome my insane fear of bulking up my legs. Bodyweight squats are not going to do that.

CapN_Tommy I'm currently working on the old philosophy degree. Can you believe that Hegel an optional module and I was idiot enough to choose it. I thought it would be interesting, it was, but so tough.

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"The cure for anything is salt water - tears, sweat or the sea" - Isak Dinesen

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Okay, Spezzy, you've convinced me, I'm putting them up to 10. I must overcome my insane fear of bulking up my legs. Bodyweight squats are not going to do that.

:)

so bulking is your fear? squats won't make your legs bulk. trust me, if they did, i'd be huuuuuuuge by now :) my legs are actually smaller now with the insane amounts of squats that I do (i do weighted squats just about every day) than ever before in my entire life. the only bulk on them is pure fat :)

“There's only one rule that I know of, babies—God damn it, you've got to be kind.”
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Thanks, Spezzy, I've spent so long being indoctrinated by the fitness industry into think that all strength exercises lead to bulk that I can't get it out of my head, even though I know it's bollocks.

Progress Day 1 7/3/11

I had an amazing day today, mostly because I GOT A JOB!!!!!!!!!!!!! Very, very excited. You never know I might even be solvent by the end of this challenge. :D

Fitness:

1. Went for a little run. Couldn't find anything to time myself with so I'm not sure I ran exactly what I was meant to, but I did run.

2. Also did my callisthenics. Less said about my pathetic attempts inverted rows to better, but aside from that all went very well.

4. Spent nearly an hour stretching, I now have that lovely post-stretch relaxed muscle feeling. :)

Diet:

1. Success on both counts, despite the presence of cheese and biscuits in the house.

Lifestyle:

1. Ummm... yeah... not so much.

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"The cure for anything is salt water - tears, sweat or the sea" - Isak Dinesen

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Thank you Clawed, very interesting reads.

"Women are morbidly under muscled" - yes, yes I am, to such a degree that it's pretty embarrassing. Push ups and pull ups are my aim and god I'm a long way from the latter.

"Squatting will change your lower body and get you out of "Mom" jeans and into Brazilian ones faster than all those silly fitness magazine exercises combined." - I think I might stick this on my wall.

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"The cure for anything is salt water - tears, sweat or the sea" - Isak Dinesen

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You're welcome...I was impressed that men's journal actually had an article like that. I keep on seeing small changes in the fitness magazine industry that are encouraging. Now if they could throw out the bosu balls and figure out how to correctly swing a kettlebell and not use it like a dumbbell it would be perfect :)

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Progress Day 2 - 8/3/11

Fitness:

2. Whoops. I hurt sooooo much from yesterday, shoulders = dead

4. Whoops again

Diet:

1. Pancake Day, Pancake Day I tell you! What torture! But I stayed strong. I filled my world with bacon instead. :D

Life:

1. Spent 2 1/2 hours on Logic. Have titles for both essays decided and did some serious reading.

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"The cure for anything is salt water - tears, sweat or the sea" - Isak Dinesen

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trailgirl we could fight towards the pull up together, what are you doing towards them? I'm on inverted rows atm.

CapN_Tommy I googled Packzi, big mistake, they look amazing. Well done for resisteing. The Hegel is being ignored atm, I'm embracing the logic, it's much more fun :)

Progress Day 3 9/3/11

Fitness:

1. (2/2) Went for a run this evening. A noticeable improvement from last time. I went the exact same route, but there were two less walking breaks :).

2. (1/2)

4. (2/3) Another hours stretching this evening. Was a little stiff b/c I've been using my muscles lots lately.

Diet:

1. Yeah... I ate rubbish, but none of it was wheat-y or dairy-y

Life:

1. Nowt.

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"The cure for anything is salt water - tears, sweat or the sea" - Isak Dinesen

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Bacon! The candy of meats :) Good work on skipping the pancakes yesterday. And super congrats on the improved stamina for your run- that's great!

I read a study once that said doing ANYTHING in the gym is more anabolic than doing NOTHING sitting in front of the computer.

~Chris Shugart @ T-nation

Iron is full of impurities that weaken it: through forging, it becomes steel and is

transformed into a razor-sharp sword. Human beings develop in the same fashion.

~Morihei Ueshiba

Favorites:

* Robb Wolf Podcast #68- Matt Lalonde vs gluten (<-transcript)

*Documentary: Fat Head

*NF blog:Most Inspirational 20 Minutes

*Starting Strength Wiki

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Bacon! The candy of meats :) Good work on skipping the pancakes yesterday. And super congrats on the improved stamina for your run- that's great!

Bacon is pure perfection in meat form. Seriously, I went from craving sugar to thinking that bacon is the only thing I really want to eat right now...

And good job on avoiding wheat and dairy! That can be a lot of work, but it's worth it :)

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Bacon! The candy of meats :)

Might I venture that quality Gammon is a little better than bacon, or will I be smote down for that?

Thank you for all the congratulations, my lovelies, I am very proud (and surprised) about how well I'm doing on the poison avoidance.

Elizabeth, I should be graduating from my BA in a year and a bit, but the plan is to do an MA after that, so I will be at uni for quite a long time (at least that's the general idea)

Progress Report Day 4 10/3/11

Fitness:

2. (2/3) In the beginning there was Polish Death Metal, then Lowenna said "let there be push ups" and there were girly push ups! And so it was until the forth set whereupon Death Metal was replaced by Power Metal.

4. (3/4) Yoga to Power Metal, why the hell not? It was awesome.

Diet:

1. I had lunch at a patisserie (I'm not making this easy for myself am I?), but I had smoked salmon salad which was quite yummy. I'm just about to make dinner, which (shockingly enough) involves bacon.

Life:

1. I'm shit at life.

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"The cure for anything is salt water - tears, sweat or the sea" - Isak Dinesen

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Might I venture that quality Gammon is a little better than bacon, or will I be smote down for that?

No, you're allowed. Considering that I ate pork shoulder that was cured as bacon, I use the term "bacon" loosely. Though I consider ham and bacon to be two different things.

I actually think that most pork products are awesome, not just bacon. Because without pigs we would not have lard, which is like the most awesome (yes, I'm aware I like the word awesome when describing food) fat to cook with, ever!

Besides, even though I like bacon, there's little better than something like this (which I am having cravings for -- now time to locate some -- I've only ever had it at restaurants)

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Ham and bacon are entirely different and a gammon joint is another thing as well. IMO ham is that skinny cheap stuff you get in supermarkets and gammon is the awesome stuff which you make yourself.

ham<bacon<gammon

But all are awesome. My love of pork products is bizarre given my ambivalence toward pork chops. Lamb? Duck? Now you're talking.

I have never seen Guanciale before, I think that I must investigate.

The word awesome cannot be overused, particularly in the context of awesome food stuffs.

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"The cure for anything is salt water - tears, sweat or the sea" - Isak Dinesen

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Also, and how did I forget this earlier?, but this morning I fitted into a pair of jeans that haven't fitted for 6 months, they're still a little tight but they are on and do not look horrible. WIN!

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"The cure for anything is salt water - tears, sweat or the sea" - Isak Dinesen

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Fitness:

2. (2/3) In the beginning there was Polish Death Metal, then Lowenna said "let there be push ups" and there were girly push ups! And so it was until the forth set whereupon Death Metal was replaced by Power Metal.

4. (3/4) Yoga to Power Metal, why the hell not? It was awesome.

Awesome! I like to jam to Banane Metalik for workouts (a French gore-punk band, they dress as monsters, but well dressed monsters:

)
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Progress Report Day 5 11/3/11

first, and most importantly, j'aime Banane Metalik

secondly, urgh, urgh, uuuurrrrggghhhh, yucky day. Had a horrible sinus headache all day, followed by light-headedness and vague nausea as the day progressed. In addition ridiculously busy. Went out tonight and flaked out at 11:30 and I never make it home before 3am. So yeah, not grand.

Fitness:

Didn't do any of my scheduled stuff, it feels like a terrible excuse, but I felt horrible and couldn't face it. I did, however, cycle just over 10 miles today, not for exercise purposes just b/c I had a million and one things to do all over town. I guess it all helps.

Diet:

Still pretty much on track, no fails.

Life:

Very busy, very ill, very fail-y

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"The cure for anything is salt water - tears, sweat or the sea" - Isak Dinesen

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