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Mandelbaum

Mandelbaum: "It's Go Time!"

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My Main Quest: My goal is to run my first half-marathon. I set this goal back in April, but I have since acquired a stress fracture in my right foot. As I am in a walking boot/aircast until a time TBD, my main quest will be to increase my overall strength. For the next six weeks, I will focus on upper body strength while taking care of myself so that I can get back into running shape as quickly as possible (while not losing that upper body strength, of course!).

 

 

Mission #1: I will complete one unassisted chin up by the end of this challenge. I have been coached through band-assisted pull-ups and chin-ups on three occasions so far. I cannot stress enough how much I hated it, which is precisely why I chose this as a goal. To prepare for this feat, I will complete two strength training sessions per week, practice my form (hook grip) on a chin up bar at home, and stretch/massage my lats to aid recovery in between sessions.

 

This mission will be monitored daily, but will be graded on a weekly basis:

A = Attend two sessions, stretch/massage, and practice at home

B = Attend two sessions, stretch/massage, but do not practice at home

C = Attend two sessions, practice at home, but do not adequately stretch/massage

D = Attend two sessions, but do not stretch/massage or practice at home

F = Attend less than two sessions

 

 

Mission #2: I will consume 2,100 quality calories each day. Daily calories will be logged into MyFitnessPal to ensure appropriate carb-fat-protein ratios. I have been doing well with the Paleo diet since starting it last month, but sometimes struggle to get in enough calories before day's end. When I do reach my caloric goals, I am able to sleep through the night (a huge issue for me). Proper nutrition – and sleep! – will allow me to have intense workouts [see Adventure 1], help me recover the day after those intense workouts, and support the healing of my stress fracture.

 

This mission will be graded on a daily basis:

A = Logged 2,000 calories

B = Logged 1,900 calories

C = Logged 1,800 calories

D = Logged 1,700 calories

F = Logged < 1,700 calories

(These numbers will increase if I am able to start running again.) 

 

 

Mission #3: I will abide by the instructions given to me by medical personnel in order to rehab my stress fracture. I am less-than-great at listening to my body and being patient during the recovery process (particularly when there is no obvious wound). I will start physical therapy when the boot comes off (maybe the 31st?!), which I expect will entail several appointments and doing strengthening exercises at home each day in between those appointments.

For now, I will:

• Follow my orthopedist’s guidelines every day and not use my foot in ways I am not supposed to, such as walking without my boot on or using too much force (if he says low-impact, then keep it low-impact!)

After physical therapy starts, I will:

• Complete all rehabilitation exercises every day (or as directed)

 

This mission will be monitored daily, but will be graded on a weekly basis:

A = Followed doctor’s orders each day

B = Followed doctor’s orders six days

C = Followed doctor’s orders five days

D = Followed doctor’s orders four days

F = Followed doctor’s orders less than four days

 

 

Life Quest: This one is the scariest for me (yes, even scarier than pulling my chin up over a bar). I am a full-time student and am writing my dissertation - which has pretty much made me a shut-in. I need to get more comfortable in venturing out to see what the world (or at least my town) has to offer. I want to enjoy my life and "play" more, but my world has gotten very tiny of late. This six-week challenge is the push that I need to get me past the edge of my comfort zone.

My life quest, therefore, is to attend one social gathering (downtown, at the university…it doesn’t matter. It just needs to involve a large group of people that I don’t know and last for at least one hour. And the gym doesn’t count.).

 

This will be graded weekly, on a pass/fail basis:

Pass = Attended a social event

Fail = Did not attend a social event

 

My Motivation: My motivation is to get healthy by making myself my biggest priority. I have always put others’ needs before my own, often to the detriment of my physical and emotional health. After yet another Major Life Change in the past few years, I have realized that I need to take care of me before I can take care of anyone or anything else.  

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“Not well? What is illness to the body of a knight-errant? What matter wounds? For each time he falls, he shall rise again, and woe to the wicked.†

~Don Quixote

 

Time to sally forth!

 

 

Here are my current measurements (in centimeters):

shoulder width: 38

upper chest: 84.5

upper arm: 28 ® and 27 (L)

forearm: 24 ® and 23.5 (L)

waist: 66.5

thigh: 50.5 ® and 51 (L)

calf: 35.5 ® and 36.5 (L) 

 

Current weight:

111 lbs.

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Wow. This is a post full of awesome-ness! And all on an aircast! Hmmmm. Interesting correlation between food and sleep - I might have to do a bit of tracking myself. . .

 

Love the Quixote quote!

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Thanks for the encouragement, Ororo! Running was _the_ only thing keeping me sane, so I was ready to jump off a cliff when I got my diagnosis (instead, I settled for a good cry. In the doctor's office.). I'm working on convincing myself that my upper body focus was a choice and not some sort of consolation prize. Having the specific chin up goal seems to be helping (I'm getting the **** over it. Thanks, Steve!).

The change in my sleeping habits has been truly jaw-dropping. I would routinely wake up in the middle of the night and have to eat just to be able to fall back asleep (even if I ate dinner at 10pm). I don't know if it's the healthy fats or the lean meats (I used to get most of my protein through beans, tempeh, tofu, quinoa), but Paleo has made a HUGE difference in the quality and quantity of my sleep.

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Gosh. I think eating Primal/Paleo has the opposite effect on me. I'm already a light sleeper - typically can't make more than five happen - but with a healthy diet, my energy seems inexhaustible. I can barely manage four hours! 

 

But thanks to your insights, I'm going to put down more food and see if that helps. . .

 

Way to take something that could easily be used as an excuse as a motivation to achieve overall fitness! Kudos!

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@ Ororo, yes I have the same problem too. When I try to sleep I get even more energised than I was before I closed my eyes. This way i'll never complete my mission to sleep 8 hours a day!

 

@ Mandelbaum Good luck with your challenge. I know how scary it is to socialise, but that is not a bad thing I think. Some people are more introvert than others. Tip: If you feel to uncomfortable in, par example, a crouded bar like I do most of the times, just go home. You won't enjoy yourself and that will only give you stress. I hope that it wont happen though!

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Ororo and Shaunty - my Paleo diet gives me plenty of energy during the day, too. I think that eating lots of calories is what has helped me sleep through the night (good calories, of course). 

My Week 1 Update:

I haven't had such a successful week, and my sleep patterns have definitely been affected. My workouts have gone very well. Lots of progress (but I am still sore 4 days later. Crazy.). I did get my cast off on Wednesday (yahoo!), but it will be 2 weeks before I can start physical therapy. I am supposed to limit my walking, which I have tried to do, but visiting my parents this weekend got me out of my routine. I put my cast back on for the two hour drive back and also to do some shopping this morning (walking on Saturday made it really tender). I can say that Missions 1 and 3 were a success this week.

Mission 2 wasn't even close. No excuses - it just "wasn't a priority". I had two options for my Life Quest (both on Thursday night at the same time) and I did neither. Again, no excuses. This week will be better...I'm sure of it!

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No use crying over spilled milk etc. Just keep up the good work! We've still got five weeks to go after all. Is there a reason why you didn't went to the social gatherings? Was it because you didn't have the time, were lazy, or was it because you were to anxious? If it's the latter than maby you could use the 20-sec beast mode that Steve once talked about.

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Was it because you didn't have the time, were lazy, or was it because you were to anxious? If it's the latter than maby you could use the 20-sec beast mode that Steve once talked about.

This is great! I'd seen the 5 Ways to Immediately Appear More Confident  (Get out of Your Head is my favorite part) post, but not this one. Beast mode definitely ties into my Life Quest.

My slacking was a combination of time and anxiety. As a "make up", I went to an outdoor Boot Camp class on Wednesday. It's not technically "the gym", because you pretty much have to interact with the fifty or so other people there (you're in groups and/or get paired up). I am going to try to do two social activities today. Three of my friends graduate this afternoon and I will be attending the ceremony alone. Secondly, there is free outdoor music downtown tonight (a 5-min bike ride from my place), so as long as it's not raining I'll attend that, as well. Going alone will hopefully encourage me to chat up a stranger or two. 

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That is a lot of social activity! You go girl! I never read that post before, and I agree that Get out of your head is the best one. Although Smile is also a good one; once you start smiling your brain makes some hormomes that actually make you feel good. Furthermore people around you have the tendency to mirror ones movements so they will start to smile and feel happy too: win/win! 

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My Main Quest: My goal is to run my first half-marathon. I set this goal back in April, but I have since acquired a stress fracture in my right foot. As I am in a walking boot/aircast until a time TBD, my main quest will be to increase my overall strength. For the next six weeks, I will focus on upper body strength while taking care of myself so that I can get back into running shape as quickly as possible (while not losing that upper body strength, of course!).
 
 
Mission #1: I will complete one unassisted chin up by the end of this challenge. I have been coached through band-assisted pull-ups and chin-ups on three occasions so far. I cannot stress enough how much I hated it, which is precisely why I chose this as a goal. To prepare for this feat, I will complete two strength training sessions per week, practice my form (hook grip) on a chin up bar at home, and stretch/massage my lats to aid recovery in between sessions.
 
This mission will be monitored daily, but will be graded on a weekly basis:
A = Attend two sessions, stretch/massage, and practice at home
B = Attend two sessions, stretch/massage, but do not practice at home
C = Attend two sessions, practice at home, but do not adequately stretch/massage
D = Attend two sessions, but do not stretch/massage or practice at home
F = Attend less than two sessions
 
 
Mission #2: I will consume 2,100 quality calories each day. Daily calories will be logged into MyFitnessPal to ensure appropriate carb-fat-protein ratios. I have been doing well with the Paleo diet since starting it last month, but sometimes struggle to get in enough calories before day's end. When I do reach my caloric goals, I am able to sleep through the night (a huge issue for me). Proper nutrition – and sleep! – will allow me to have intense workouts [see Adventure 1], help me recover the day after those intense workouts, and support the healing of my stress fracture.
 
This mission will be graded on a daily basis:
A = Logged 2,000 calories
B = Logged 1,900 calories
C = Logged 1,800 calories
D = Logged 1,700 calories
F = Logged < 1,700 calories
(These numbers will increase if I am able to start running again.) 
 
 
Mission #3: I will abide by the instructions given to me by medical personnel in order to rehab my stress fracture. I am less-than-great at listening to my body and being patient during the recovery process (particularly when there is no obvious wound). I will start physical therapy when the boot comes off (maybe the 31st?!), which I expect will entail several appointments and doing strengthening exercises at home each day in between those appointments.
For now, I will:
• Follow my orthopedist’s guidelines every day and not use my foot in ways I am not supposed to, such as walking without my boot on or using too much force (if he says low-impact, then keep it low-impact!)
After physical therapy starts, I will:
• Complete all rehabilitation exercises every day (or as directed)
 
This mission will be monitored daily, but will be graded on a weekly basis:
A = Followed doctor’s orders each day
B = Followed doctor’s orders six days
C = Followed doctor’s orders five days
D = Followed doctor’s orders four days
F = Followed doctor’s orders less than four days
 
 
Life Quest: This one is the scariest for me (yes, even scarier than pulling my chin up over a bar). I am a full-time student and am writing my dissertation - which has pretty much made me a shut-in. I need to get more comfortable in venturing out to see what the world (or at least my town) has to offer. I want to enjoy my life and "play" more, but my world has gotten very tiny of late. This six-week challenge is the push that I need to get me past the edge of my comfort zone.
My life quest, therefore, is to attend one social gathering (downtown, at the university…it doesn’t matter. It just needs to involve a large group of people that I don’t know and last for at least one hour. And the gym doesn’t count.).
 
This will be graded weekly, on a pass/fail basis:
Pass = Attended a social event
Fail = Did not attend a social event
 
My Motivation: My motivation is to get healthy by making myself my biggest priority. I have always put others’ needs before my own, often to the detriment of my physical and emotional health. After yet another Major Life Change in the past few years, I have realized that I need to take care of me before I can take care of anyone or anything else.  
 
“Not well? What is illness to the body of a knight-errant? What matter wounds? For each time he falls, he shall rise again, and woe to the wicked.” 
~Don Quixote
 
Time to sally forth!
 
 
Here are my current measurements (in centimeters):
shoulder width: 38
upper chest: 84.5
upper arm: 28 ® and 27 (L)
forearm: 24 ® and 23.5 (L)
waist: 66.5
thigh: 50.5 ® and 51 (L)
calf: 35.5 ® and 36.5 (L) 
 
Current weight:
111 lbs.

 

Don Quixote, awesome!

So stay focused and remember you are your own hero!

Good Luck

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@ Ororo, yes I have the same problem too. When I try to sleep I get even more energised than I was before I closed my eyes. This way i'll never complete my mission to sleep 8 hours a day!

 

@ Mandelbaum Good luck with your challenge. I know how scary it is to socialise, but that is not a bad thing I think. Some people are more introvert than others. Tip: If you feel to uncomfortable in, par example, a crouded bar like I do most of the times, just go home. You won't enjoy yourself and that will only give you stress. I hope that it wont happen though!

 

 

In my best Morpheus voice "I know exactly what you mean!" I find the effect horrible when I first return to a Primal/Paleo diet . .the first week I barely sleep at all. But thereafter, it starts to balance itself out. Yet, I can never manage more than five hours when I'm eating clean. 

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Ororo and Shaunty - my Paleo diet gives me plenty of energy during the day, too. I think that eating lots of calories is what has helped me sleep through the night (good calories, of course). 

My Week 1 Update:

I haven't had such a successful week, and my sleep patterns have definitely been affected. My workouts have gone very well. Lots of progress (but I am still sore 4 days later. Crazy.). I did get my cast off on Wednesday (yahoo!), but it will be 2 weeks before I can start physical therapy. I am supposed to limit my walking, which I have tried to do, but visiting my parents this weekend got me out of my routine. I put my cast back on for the two hour drive back and also to do some shopping this morning (walking on Saturday made it really tender). I can say that Missions 1 and 3 were a success this week.

Mission 2 wasn't even close. No excuses - it just "wasn't a priority". I had two options for my Life Quest (both on Thursday night at the same time) and I did neither. Again, no excuses. This week will be better...I'm sure of it!

 

How did Week 2 go? And how's that stress fracture? 

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Hi, all. Thanks for checking in - and for the encouragement. It helps. I need to get on here (much) more often. I have been disheartened with my progress at school, so have been avoiding my computer these days. Probably not the best strategy, I know, but that's where I am. 

Challenge update: I have a fitness assessment at the campus gym (free!) every eight weeks or so. At this last one (Aug 6th), I'd dropped 3% body fat and was able to do 19 push-ups. My VO2 max was waaaay down and I could not do a chin-up, but those were to be expected. 

Sleeping and eating are back on track. I easily ate well over my minimum calories last week. I find it curious that your Paleo/sleep experiences are so different from mine. Maybe there's another factor that I've not taken into account.

We're between semesters, so no gym access. In the meantime, each day I'm doing an on-your-way-to-a-pull-up routine (I bought a pull-up bar) and light dumbbell exercises to strengthen my left arm (very much weaker than my right side, I've discovered). I am going to do a strength training session tonight, using the NF Dumbell Division workout as a guide.

I have been avoiding any impact with my foot and even limiting my walking. I guess I neglected to post that I was diagnosed with Morton's Neuroma (a nerve issue in my forefoot that makes it hurt to walk). I am pretty sure that will be the focus of my physical therapy sessions.

I did attend the graduation event, but fell asleep before the music started downtown. I am going to try for that again this week, though!

 

Okay...I am going. to. stay. more. connected. to my NF community.

 

Thanks again.

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Losing 3% bodyfat is great! I'm curious, are you able to see any changes?

I'm jealous! I want a pull up bar too! The only problem is that we have a very small house and no space to store the damn thing. I hardly have a place to do my bodyweight workouts, imagine working out with attributes. Luckely we have some playgrounds in the neighbourhood. It's just that I'm to shy to do my workouts in plain sight.

I've also noticed that my left arm is weaker than my right arm, it's not strange of you consider my right-handedness.

A shame you missed the music, but attending the event is a beginning right?

About being connected, don't worry about it. I made the choise to update every day, others only do that once a week. I think that there are lot of people that even ended the challenge (they haven't updated since the beginning). So I'm thinking your doing fine. Of course it's nice to hear more of you :)

Good luck with your training!

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I have added "NF update" to my planner, so now it will get done. :) 

About the percentage body fat loss: my clothes size didn't really change, but I noticed muscles/definition where I'd never ever had it before. Very cool. :) I had been getting soft sitting around so much.

I got a less-than-$20 pull-up bar from Amazon. It doesn't have to be bolted to the wall. My house is only 604 sq.ft., so I understand cramped spaces. I just keep the bar up there all of the time (it's overhead, so out of the way ). If I had a tall roommate it might not work out so well (I'm 5'1", so what's overhead to me

could knock someone else in the forehead). A friend loaned me a resistance band to help with the pull-ups for now (otherwise, I'd only be able to manage 'negatives').

 

I went to the physical therapist today. I will see him weekly for long while it seems. He gave me exercises to do every other day to strengthen my ankles and hips (my balancing mechanics are off, which is what caused the neuroma). He was nice and encouraging, so that was fantastic. No impact for a while and no weighted squats or overhead presses for now. I am thankful to just have a plan for recovery.

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It feels great to actually see muscle definition right! I can see my biceps now when I tighten them, I've never been able to do that before. The working out pays of (yeah!)

That pull up bar might be a solution. Maby I'll treat myself one once I'm able to do a full push up.

Good luck with the exercises the therapist gave you. I hope they help!

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Week 3 update:

Mission 1 - I attended one gym session (school was out for summer break and the gym just re-opened Friday afternoon). I completed my daily pull-up exercises. During my strength training session, I felt noticeably stronger than when I did those same (pull up) exercises a week and a half ago. The difference in strength between my left side and my right side (shoulder/bicep/tricep/forearm) seems to be getting more pronounced. My shoulders have a slope of about 45 degrees when I do a negative pull-up. I am going to try to let my left arm be the dominant one when I do my daily pull-up exercises this week and see if that helps.

Mission 2 - This is where things really fell apart mid-week. I am very much back on track with my schoolwork (yay!), but being in lockdown to get work done has caused me to run out of good food at home. I have been eating whatever I can get my hands on...not even healthy by non-Paleo standards. During those last few days, I did not bother to track my calories. However, my plan is to get groceries first thing tomorrow and do some cooking so I can get back on track for the week.

Mission 3 - This one came pretty easily this week. I did my PT homework as directed. School was out, so no opportunity to over-do things at Boot Camp.

Life Quest - I made it to the downtown music Friday night...and went to an open-to-the public football practice on campus on Saturday morning. I didn't have any Beast Mode moments, but I did exchange pleasantries, make eye contact, etc. I'm just glad I got out of the house. I was never one to go out in public alone (unless it was to a restaurant with my nose in a good book).  

Overall, a pretty good week, but I look forward to eating better in the coming days!

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Yeey!! Congrats on the achievements! I get the same problems with running out of food. I try not to buy to much at once and buy wilting veggies with discount daily (eating paleo is expensive) so I run out of things to eat very fast. Now that school started again I have to make some changes. I think of stocking my food every Saturday and Wednesday when a car is available (normally I go by foot or by bike).

Hurray for eye contact!

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I go to school by bike, too, so there's no stopping for groceries on my way home. There is a Farmer's Market downtown Wednesday afternoons. It's fresher, but not cheaper. The stocking up worked - I've been doing well in both quality and quantity of calories.

My big food issue is that when I'm being productive with my schoolwork, I don't want to stop to cook...or even eat. I'm afraid I'll lose momentum or something. Classes start tomorrow, so I'll be back in a routine of being on campus to tutor. Having structure is good.

Our school gym finally opened yesterday. I tend to not push myself hard enough when it's just me (vs. a class or small group), so I was happy to discover that I was sore today. :)

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Yea, working out in a group gets more out of you than working out alone (most of the time). I'm also a big fan of structure, during this first week of school I encountered some things that I had to get used to and I had to figure out how I would fit this eating and working out pattern into my schedule. But after a few weeks (I hope) we'll get used to it!

My sister also forgets to eat very often. Mostly I'm the one to tell her to eat something. Maybe you can put up an alarm that tells you to eat? It might encourage you to eat.

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Yiiiiikkkkes. I just had two of the longest/busiest days I've had in a long, long time. Yesterday morning I had a follow-up appointment with my orthopedist. I was given a cortisone shot in between my toes (for the Morton's neuroma). That was less-than-fun. Good news, though - he cleared me to start running on a treadmill in physical therapy in two weeks. Yay!!

 

Setting an alarm is a good idea. I've always wanted to do that to remind me to take stretch breaks from the computer, too. I can move around while I fix a snack. Very efficient. :)

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Mission 1: I have been following my pull-up plan. I went to two training sessions last week and plan to add a Boot Camp session this week.

 

Mission 2: This, again, has been my biggest struggle. I know that I'm alone in that, though. I am back on track now and it feels very good. My first substantial Paleo (two days ago) felt so nourishing. Some of that 'feel good' might be in knowing that I care enough about myself to have taken the time to prepare and enjoy a healthy meal. That's a big step - both stopping my schoolwork when I'm in the middle of something as well as putting myself first. 

 

Mission 3: I have been diligent about taking care of my foot. I only wear my sneakers, which now have insoles. I have been doing my PT exercises as directed (he added 3 more this past week). I've been doing so much schoolwork that the first time I left the house on Sunday was at 7pm to do my banded side-steps outside (I need 30m of space). At least it got me up and moving.

 

LifeQuest: I attended a 5k as a spectator (living vicariously!). It was inspiring. Also - I signed up for a Rape Aggression defense course here on campus. It won't start until after this challenge ends, but it will get me out there interacting with the world...and teach me some great skills (which I will hopefully never need).

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YEAH! Nice prospectives! Boot Camp and exercises are great. Having plans for after this challenge it good too! I think I'll have to start planning ahead also. I can empathise on the being busy part. School is keeping me occupied. Last year I neglected my homework and still got good grades, but if I want to get into Uni I'll have to do better. I guess I can't play computer games as much any more.

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Mission 1: Getting a little nervous about being able to "complete" this mission. I have been doing my pull up exercises diligently, but don't seem to be making the progress I think I need to be able to complete a chin up within the next week....I'll keep moving forward though and see what happens.

 

Mission 2: Peaks and valleys with my food intake. Started off weak, but have ended strong. For whatever reason, I have a renewed interest in being strict with my Paleo diet. I am dog-sitting for friends during our 4-day holiday weekend. Instead of trying to figure it out as I go along (like last time I was here), this time I packed some ingredients and snacks and went to the grocery store each day to grab something to make for dinner. My friends that I visited were surprised at how much I eat (big portions of meat and lots of veggies) and still look healthy. I am bringing my own meat and also a Paleo side dish to my parents' house tomorrow. I'm sure I'll get some looks and comments, but I don't care anymore. I know I'm doing what's best for me.

 

Mission 3: I must have done something to aggravate my foot at Boot Camp on Wednesday. I know what exercises to avoid (which I did...no lunges, running, bear crawl, burpees), but I must have done something because it's hurt ever since. I've used little ice packs to try and calm the nerve down. I see my physical therapist on Tuesday and will ask him if he thinks that I should contact the orthopedist to get another cortisone shot (they work very closely with each other). Frustrating. I don't want Boot Camp to slow down my timeline to start running again, so I won't be going for a while. I'll find something else to take its place for a few weeks. 

 

Life Quest: Hmmm...looking back, I don't think I did anything this week that would qualify as meeting this goal. Somehow the time got away from me. I just put something in my planner to do for this coming week, though. 

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