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Brian tries a new approach


Brian.

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I promised I would be back to join the druids for this challenge after missing the last one and here I am. While I have been away I have increased my cardio work load a lot. My running has increased from 15k a week to 25k and I have been road cycling a lot. It's time for me to increase my strength and I can't do that with loads of running, god knows I've tried. The aim with this challenge is that I can put on some muscle while losing some fat.

 

 

Main Quest: Become supple and strong

This is the main reason why I joined NF back in March and I have had some great results so far. I have hit a bit of a plateu recently so it's time to completely change up what I am doing. I am going to reduce my running to one 30 minute run a week and increase my weight training.

 

 

Goal 1 - Weight training

I will following the New Rules of Lifting, I have already done the break in so now its time to step things up. I will be doing no lifting for the first week of the challenge though because I am coming off the back of a lot of training and my body needs a week off from lifting. For the first week I will continue to run in place of lifting. Starting in week 2 I will be lifting 3 times a week.

 

Grades: Training sessions completed - A=15, B=14, C=13, D=12

 

 

Goal 2 - Eating

For this to work I need to eat properly and that is something which I have let slide in the last 3 weeks. I'm not too bad when it comes to calories but I need to eat enough protein. I am aiming for 1g of protein per lb of body weight per day as a starting point for this challenge, for me that is 150g.

 

Grades: Days adhered - A=42, B=38, C=36, D=34

 

 

Goal 3 - Suppleness

The one thing that I regularly let slip is stretching and as a result I have tight hamstrings and stiffness in a few other areas. To remedy this I will stick to a regime of stretching & foam rolling to get rid of this limitation. I am aiming to do this 5 times a week as it shouldn't take longer than 10 mintues each time.

 

Grades: Days adhered - A=30, B=28, C=26, D=24

 

 

Life Quest: Relax

Another thing that I have noticed creeping into my daily life is the need to always be connected to technology. I don't know if this is the cause of some restlessness I have been experiencing but it will do no harm to disconnect from time to time. I don't mind how this is done so I am giving myself plenty of scope with this one. It can be drawing, walking in the country, reading a book etc but it must be done without technology. My phone has to be switched off and there must be no interuptions.

 

 

Goal 4 - Disconnect

Twice a week for at least an hour each time I will disconnect from the world and do something that I find relaxing. The thing being done is less important than the way it is being done. No technology!!

 

Grades: - Disconnect events (min 1hr each) - A=12, B=11, C=10, D=8

 

 

Motivation

My motivation is fairly simple, I do not want to go back to where I was at the start of the year. I was in an unhealthy state of mind and body. I know with what I have achieved so far that I can do it, I just need to stick with it. I have a picture of myself at the start of the year next to my bed, that is all the motivation I need.

 

Starting Measurements

Skinfold Fat - Abs - 21mm

                    - Tricep - 10mm

                    - Chest - 8mm

                    - Midmax - 17mm

                    - Supermax - 16mm

                    - Thigh - 14mm

 

Physical Stats - Chest 38"

                        - Arms 12.5"

                        - Waist 34"

                        - Hips 35"

                        - Thigh 21.25"

                        - Calf 14"

 

Weight - 153.6lbs

 

I also have a starting photograph to compare with at the end of the challenge. I think that just about covers everything, best of luck everyone.

1 Challenge completed.

 

 

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How far do you manage to run in 30 minutes?

These see, like good goals! Strength, eating, and stretching.

I'm always really bad at stretching after working out. I usually do a few token stretches for about a minute. That will probably be a goal for me next time!

Level 4

Wood Elf Assassin

STR: 12| DEX: 2| STA: 2| CON: 7.75| WIS: 9| CHA: 5|

Current challenge:

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Hey Brian, welcome back!

Congratulations on your goals, they seem well thought through and realistic.

What kind of protein will you focus on?

I am interested in your technologyfree time as well, it will be interesting to see how it evolves and how it affects you.

I have chosen to believe in myself.


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I love your disconnect goal!  Well, all your goals look good.  But I especially like that one :)  I may have to steal it in the future...

 

Best of luck to you!

 

Thanks, steal all you like :nevreness:

 

How far do you manage to run in 30 minutes?

These see, like good goals! Strength, eating, and stretching.

I'm always really bad at stretching after working out. I usually do a few token stretches for about a minute. That will probably be a goal for me next time!

 

I normally cover just under 6k unless I am really pushing the pace in which case its over 6k. I have found that while using a foam roller the last few days that my flexibilty has increased in my hamstrings already so I'm expecting some good things from this part of my challenge.

 

Hey Brian, welcome back!

Congratulations on your goals, they seem well thought through and realistic.

What kind of protein will you focus on?

I am interested in your technologyfree time as well, it will be interesting to see how it evolves and how it affects you.

 

Thanks Eve, I see you are still kicking ass. Protein wise most of it will be from food sources. I eat eggs for breakfast and have done since the last challenge and that normally provides me with 30g of protein, lunch will be turkey or tuna based so that will provide another 30g. I tend to snack on Almonds which is another 10g and my main meal will provide about 40g depending on what I eat. The remaining 30-40g will come from whey protein which I take with milk.

 

I expect to get technology withdrawl for the first few weeks, I love gadgets.

1 Challenge completed.

 

 

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I expect to get technology withdrawal for the first few weeks, I love gadgets.

 

Power failures can be quite amusing, because everyone in my house goes into major tech withdrawal.  Suddenly, we all start being productive somewhere other than the internet!

 

Thus, I am also curious to see how this challenge unfolds for you.  For all your goals :)  

One day, your heart will stop beating, and none of your fears will matter.  What will matter is how you lived.

-Henri Junttila

 

My current challenge

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I was back at work today after a bit of time off so I was feeling a little groggy by the time I got home. I decided to give some stretches a try that I found online. I'm fairly sure some of them are yoga poses or at least beginner poses. Anyway there were 10 stretches and it took me about 15 minutes, holding each one for 60 seconds. I feel quite good now that they are done.

 

Protein wise I hit my 150g today give or take 5g either way, today I surprised myself with just how clean I managed to eat.

1 Challenge completed.

 

 

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I decided to move on from the TRX because I think weight training would be more effective at increasing my muscle mass and strength. The other reason is that I really like doing squats and deadlifts and that cannot be re-created with the TRX. I am keeping the TRX though so that I can use it when I have to work away from home etc.

 

I hit my targets of 150g protein yesterday and I also did 15 minutes of stretching after a run of about 6km. I felt like I managed to stretch a bit further last night.

1 Challenge completed.

 

 

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So far so good with my eating goal even with the hectic nature of being at work. On a side note I have eaten very clean for the past week and decided a cheat meal was in order for my lunch. Ending my clean eating with a few hotdogs wasn't a good idea, I feel rough as hell now.

 

I've only missed 1 day stretching (Thursday) and I have even got in 2 6km runs along the way. Tomorrow morning I will attempt my first disconnect session.

1 Challenge completed.

 

 

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I was hoping to keep this updated more this past week but I have been so busy with work. I have apprentice engineers to train along with doing my own job and although I enjoy it, it has tripled my work load.

 

Anyway, I missed my stretching Thursday and Friday but completed it every other day so I'm on target there with 5 days out of the week. Eating wise I'm fairly sure I hit the target everyday, if I was out, it would have only been by 5-10g so I am counting that as successful. I have got a much better handle on what I plan to eat this week so as long as I stick to it I'll be fine.

 

I had my first weight training session today after taking a week off and I felt it. I'm doing 5x5 stuff for the first time so working out how heavy to go was a little tricky but I got there in the end.

 

Finally, I did my 2, 1 hour disconnects this week. The first I did on Saturday morning by reading The Unbearable Lightness of Being by Milan Kundera. I left my phone on silent in the other room to avoid temptation. I have to admit, it felt strange but I got through a lot more pages than I otherwise would. The second I did on Sunday while cleaning the kitchen. I would normally stick the TV or some music on but I did it in silence and found it strangely calming.

 

I even managed to throw in an extra run last week of just over 6km in 30 minutes.

1 Challenge completed.

 

 

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It's been a frustrating week and especially the past few days.

 

The short version is that I got in my 3 workouts, stretched 5 times and hit my 150g target 6 times. So, only 1 missed target, I dropped the ball with my 150g target today. I decided to have a bit of a cheat day and I really should have built a bit of slack into my target. The other problem which is quite a big one is that I got injured during weight training on Wednesday. I thought I might have a hernia at first but I'm pretty confident that I have actually strained or partially torn an abdominal muscle while doing squats. While it is healing I don't want to put any undue pressure on it from squats or deadlifts for a month or so.

 

My weight training is an upper/lower body split so I did my upper split on Friday without too many issues. As I see it I have a few choices. I have opted to stick with upper body weight training 3 times a week and to up my running to 3 times a week again. I have missed regular running this week and I can use it in place of my lower body weight training.

1 Challenge completed.

 

 

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Hey, don't let it get you down. I hurt my foot this weekend somehow so have had to stick to upper-body work as well. I'm just using it as a chance to really focus on my diet and some other non-goal things that have taken a backseat. That's why they call it a challenge :)

Cave Dweller Druid, Level 4

STR: 5 | DEX: 5 | STA: 9 | CON: 10 | WIS: 6 | CHA: 8 Start:1/2/1/3/6/2

 

 

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It's been a frustrating week and especially the past few days.

 

The short version is that I got in my 3 workouts, stretched 5 times and hit my 150g target 6 times. So, only 1 missed target, I dropped the ball with my 150g target today. I decided to have a bit of a cheat day and I really should have built a bit of slack into my target. The other problem which is quite a big one is that I got injured during weight training on Wednesday. I thought I might have a hernia at first but I'm pretty confident that I have actually strained or partially torn an abdominal muscle while doing squats. While it is healing I don't want to put any undue pressure on it from squats or deadlifts for a month or so.

 

My weight training is an upper/lower body split so I did my upper split on Friday without too many issues. As I see it I have a few choices. I have opted to stick with upper body weight training 3 times a week and to up my running to 3 times a week again. I have missed regular running this week and I can use it in place of my lower body weight training.

 

I hear you on being frustrated and having to change plans.....Life, huh!?  Keep in mind that this is about learning new ways of life and allow yourself time to heal. Still plenty of challengeweeks left!

Great work so far, I am so impressed by you :-)

I have chosen to believe in myself.


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