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Raptron Hits Where it Hurts

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It's really not that bad of a sickness -- chest cold/bronchitis without a fever or anything as far as I can tell -- so it's really not impacting my workouts too much. I'm just tiring a lot more easily, dehydrating easier, and going to bed early. Also, I am starting to suspect that it's the reason my weight hasn't gone down at all in the last week and a half (in, fact, it's up 2# from this time two weeks ago and that can't all be stemming from one weekend of doggie sadness). 

 

Definitely get coughing more from laughing than from working out right now, hehe. I think I made it through the whole yoga session without coughing once. :)

 

Totally feel you on the slowing down. It's so easy to just go BAM BAM BAM, fast things. But nice, slow, deliberate thought and deliberate movements is such a nice change of pace. Feeling out your edge is such an important part of it and it makes it easier to toy with what is comfortable when you are so aware of where you are and what your body is doing. Love.

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Nice workout!  And I see that Burpee training.  Damned burpees.

 

Also I really wanted to try those cookies, but couldn't make it to Comikaze.  Damn.  Once again I miss out on delicious raptron food.

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Whoops, I didn't realize I was so behind in updating for the week. My cough/cold's mostly taken care of at this point, which is great. I finally have some energy again. 

 

Day 6.3

Rest day. 

 

Hips: 2/2

Lungs: 1/1

Gut: 3/3

Mind: This rest day felt deserved for once, so I didn't have any bit of antsiness or anxiety about taking the day for myself. I got to play video games with some friends of mine for the first time in ages and really strove to RESPECT THE REST DAY. 

 

Day 6.4

I had a very bad luck, no fun day at the gym on Thursday night. I did something weird to my left (chronically annoying) shoulder while I was on uneven bars, tore all sorts of weird tiny rips on my hands, and jammed my back landing a switch straddle leap with my back slightly hyperextended. It was really not my day. Did not have a good workout and my back has still been aching since then. It's definitely just a muscle strain and not a particularly bad one, but the nagging feeling of something off in my lower back makes me paranoid as all hell.

 

Hips: 3/3

Lungs: 1/1

Gut: 4/4

Mind: Bad days happen. While I was bemoaning these things at practice, they did not get me down because I kept telling myself that it happens and it's okay. You can't know going into a workout that stupid things will happen to you, and they were genuinely painful, so I did not feel like I was cheating myself out of working out, but rather preserving myself and trying not to injure myself further. The thin line between push-through-it-pain and injury-pain is so blurry a lot of the time, but when it comes to back stuff, I am going to keep erring on the side of protecting myself rather than adrenaline junkie-ing my way into more hurt.

 

Day 6.5

Bench day, hooray Friday. My back did not feel too bad on Friday, actually. The tweakiness didn't settle in until Saturday.

 

Warm-up row 500m in 1:59

 

Bench

5 x 45#

5 x 55#

3 x 65#

3 x 80#

3 x 90#

6 x 100#

5 x 85#

 

Burpees: 15, 16

Pike push-ups: 10, 10, 10

Pull-ups/Chin-ups (alternating): 1, 1, 1, 1, 1

Turkish get-ups with 12kg KB: 5, 5, 5 <-- Glad I upped the weight for these because oh man, so much more challenging and exciting like this. The weight feels a bit heavy leaning against my forearm, but I'm going to guess that is just because I am not used to it more than anything else? 

 

Cooldown row 500m in 2:09. I've gotten really lazy on rowing form for these cooldown rows. I might try focusing on speed at the start and then focusing on proper form at the very least for the cooldown rows. Lazy form just makes this shit harder.

 

Hips: 4/4

Lungs: 2/2

Gut: 5/5

Mind: Definitely adopted the hip conditioning and the rowing as part of my base workouts at this point. The only problem with that is I get kind of half-assed about them sometimes and wind up with poor form and poor commitment to the movements. I am going to try to be mentally better at committing to the movement for these things. 

 

Day 6.6

Morning practice. Back still wonky, so I didn't want to do any front tumbling. Hands still torn so I didn't want to do any bars. Everyone was super low energy and I spent most of practice stretching, working on static handstand holds, back tumbling, and conditioning. Sucked in terms of practice. It's okay because later we all met up for a birthday party and had a grand old time that also involved me drinking way too much and making an ass out of myself as usual (in an endearing way rather than a horrible way, I hope). 

 

Hips: 5/5

Lungs: 2/2

Gut: 5/6

Mind: I realized after Saturday's practice that I did not have a day where I really focused on process at gymnastics this week, which was one of my challenge goals. With all three practices this week turning out kind of poorly from a quality workout perspective, I must be due for a serious, dedicated three-of-everything style workout to reinvigorate my gymnastics. Unfortunately, my body has not wanted to comply with that and as I mentioned before, we're erring on the side of self-preservation over pushing it for a good workout.

 

Day 6.7

Got up, went to brunch incredibly hungover, walked around a farmer's market and vintage market hoping to find some fun plates or cake stands for food styling because I am THAT person but I didn't have much luck this time around. Got home, went back to sleep, but eventually got up and argued myself into the gym because I didn't want to be that much of a Sunday Sadsack of hangover garbage.

 

My back was tichy on rowing, so I biked for my warm-up 1.25 miles in 5 minutes.

 

Squat

5 x 45#

5 x 85#

5 x 105#

3 x 125#

3 x 145#

3 x 170#

7 x 190#

3 x 190# <-- being insubordinate to the program

3 x 190# <--""

 

DB bulgarian split squats w/40# dbs: 5, 5, 5

Hanging straddle leg lifts: 7, 7, 7

Pistol squats: 5, 5, 5

Burpees: 20, 14

Chins/pull-ups: 1, 1, 1, 1, 1

 

Again with the tichy back and my feet were incredibly sore from wandering around in heels for 8 hours on Saturday night, so I had literally 0 desire to go for a run. Instead, I doubled my bike cooldown to 10:00 minutes instead of 5:00 minutes. I probably should have done more, but I didn't have headphones and get so incredibly bored.

 

Hips: 6/6

Lungs: 3/4

Gut: 6/7

Mind: I am chafing a bit at the programmed weights for squat especially. I need to read the entirety of Beyond 5/3/1 because there are some more detailed options for getting in more volume on the lifts you feel more comfortable with and maybe I can incorporate those properly instead of just willy-nilly tacking on sets when I feel frustrated or bored. I really cannot wait to get this squat weight up. However, I have been still having issues with my right hip in the front-inner section of the joint, which I feel must be either a ligament or a tendon just aching while I do squats. It doesn't really bother me doing anything else, so I forget about it until squat day. Not sure what to do there. 

 

 

FULL WEEK SIX REPORT WILL COME TOMORROW. I didn't technically start my challenge until Tuesday of the first week, so it can't technically be over until this coming Tuesday. :)

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Okay, so Challenge Wrap-Up!

 

Weak Spot #1: Hips

*At least 3 hip conditioning exercises after EVERY workout

Result:  4 + 4 + 6 + 4 + 5 + 6 = 29/31

 

This goal worked really well for me because it followed the format that I've had success with before -- tacking additional tasks on to my workouts. The biggest problem with these types of goals for me is my own memory, which actually led me to forget about adding on my hip conditioning twice -- once in week one and once in week two. Otherwise the variance in numbers is just because some weeks I worked out 5 times and others I worked out 6 times. The dip in Week 4 is when I skipped two workouts (gymnastics and a squat deload day) after breaking up the dog-cat battle and moping around. I'll keep this type of goal close to the top when I create new goals.

 

Weak Spot #2: Lungs

*Row at least 500m before and after every gym session (3x week)

*Run at least 1 mile once a week

Result: 4 + 4 + 3.5 + 2 + 3 + 3 = 19.5/24

 

I dutifully did my C2 rowing before and after every workout with a couple of instances where I stationary biked instead. Again, this fell under the model of "things to tack on to my workout" and required only an additional 4 minutes (ideally) per gym visit. The running... well... honestly this is a repeat offense for me. I've previously had running in challenges and have completely blown it there as well. This challenge, I ran 2.5 miles out of a possible 6 which is really an egregious failure being padded by my dutiful rowing. The funny thing is that last summer and even the whole year before that, running was the only type of exercise I really did. I ran about 3x a week, not very far or very fast, but I was getting out there and doing it. These days I have so much trouble making myself go, even if I tell myself it's only going to be 10 minutes. I DO want to have better cardio endurance than I have and running seems like one of the best ways to do that -- plus I do like the idea of actually having FUN on a FUN RUN with friends of mine, who mainly choose running as their workout-oriented hobby. 

 

Any suggestions on how to better incentivize something like this?

 

Weak Spot #3: Gut

*Comply with calorie goal within 200 calories each day

*Comply with weekly calorie goal within 500 calories

*Post measurements/updates at 2 weeks, 4 weeks, and 6 weeks 

 

Result: 6 + 7 + 5 + 5 + 6 + 6 = 35/42

6/7 weeks within weekly goal wiggle room

 

I didn't POST the measurements/updates at 2 weeks, 4 weeks, and 6 weeks, but I can post them now.

 

First day of the challenge, I weighed in at 150.4 lbs after about 5 days of drinking and debauchery, so I wouldn't really call it an accurate starting point. I had been weighing in a bit over 148 the week prior to that. As of this past week, I was weighing in consistently in the low 145s with a low of 145lbs on Saturday morning. My weight is up this morning to 146, but again, drinking like an asshole this weekend, so I'm thinking I'll probably get back to the low 145s again by the weekend. Anyway, real weight loss was probably about 3lbs, which is far less than I was hoping for, but my compliance wasn't perfect and I probably set myself back at least a week or two from the Ruckus weekend of doom, gloom, and waffles.  

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Unfortunately, I couldn't locate my measuring tape the first two weeks of the challenge and the first two weeks were where I had the most results (obviously). The first delta you can ignore for this challenge, it's just from the previous measurements at the start of August, which is when I think I started my battle log previously. July was also the heaviest I've been in my life, so heyyy that's over at least. Second delta suggests I dropped a bit over 2 inches between the end of September and now, which is probably fair given that October has had really inconsistent compliance.

 

Pictures Sept 21 vs. Oct 28 (this morning)

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Totally did not fix my APT for the picture this morning. Naughty, naughty. I've also been having some digestive issues for the past few days, which I think is not helping the bloaty belly situation seen above.

 

159018be7f357fd23bcc79db4f3b6c79.png

I think the extra upper body work I've been doing [bw accessories, burpees, etc.] has actually made my shoulders a bit bigger!

 

So, verdict? I mean, I can see a difference at least in the front shot and my weight DID drop a little plus my measurements dropped a little as well. I had hoped this would be a sharp sharp 6 week cut where I could get to 142 or so, but that didn't really work out for me. My goal is to be around 138 for competition season mid-February. Because I missed 7 days of compliance, I am going to aim for 7 more days at the current levels. After that's through, I am going to attempt to raise cals gradually towards maintenance for at least 6 weeks before dropping to cut calories again. So, 1 week staying here and 6-8 weeks moving towards maintenance into 8 weeks of cutting. Hopefully.

 

Weak Spot #4: Mindset

*Focus on the process rather than specific goals and reflect on a moment each day that has improved my life

*Focus on the process during at least one gymnastics practice a week, going through full repertoire of skills

Result: 7 + 7 + 7 + 5 + 7 + 7 = 40/42

5/7 weeks process-focused workout

 

I liked this goal and I definitely was in a place a few times this challenge where I really needed it. I am a visual person, so I might benefit from some visual reminders of something like including a "process-focused" workout in my gymnastics plan for the week. Otherwise, I think this went really well. At the suggestion of Lupus, I did go through and pull out each of my daily reflections and compiled them into one document, which funnily enough had a lot of repeat refrains about focusing on the process, allowing myself to work on "fun skills" instead of gymnastics routine skills, and the merits of #justshowup: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1obpl5wivvCZOJVQtnAATpo_edOgS53ayQ0Avtm_eRfM/edit?usp=sharing

 

 

OVERALL TOTAL: 134.5/153

87.9%

 

Honestly, I really liked the format of this challenge and next challenge will ALSO be a weak points challenge, this time probably focusing on HIIT (ughhh), pull-ups (I need to up my game here, seriously), and spending time on uneven bars. 

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I think this challenge format really suited you. I really liked your daily "mind" observations.

 

As for getting to like running--are you able to run outside where you are (I forget if you're in a wintery place). For some people that helps. For me, (when I was trying to be a runner) Zombies Run really helped me. I was curious to see where the story went next so that provided me the motivation to get a run in. I still don't like running, but the Zombies were enormously helpful in actually getting me to run. Once you get in the habit or build up your CV capacity, then the enjoyment may come from being able to spend some quality healthy time with friends without feeling like your lungs will explode. ;)

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I think this challenge format really suited you. I really liked your daily "mind" observations.

As for getting to like running--are you able to run outside where you are (I forget if you're in a wintery place). For some people that helps. For me, (when I was trying to be a runner) Zombies Run really helped me. I was curious to see where the story went next so that provided me the motivation to get a run in. I still don't like running, but the Zombies were enormously helpful in actually getting me to run. Once you get in the habit or build up your CV capacity, then the enjoyment may come from being able to spend some quality healthy time with friends without feeling like your lungs will explode. ;)

I used that app this challenge! Completely saved me from failing! I was excited to run to hear the stories and the occasional zombie chase was exciting!

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I think this challenge format really suited you. I really liked your daily "mind" observations.

 

As for getting to like running--are you able to run outside where you are (I forget if you're in a wintery place). For some people that helps. For me, (when I was trying to be a runner) Zombies Run really helped me. I was curious to see where the story went next so that provided me the motivation to get a run in. I still don't like running, but the Zombies were enormously helpful in actually getting me to run. Once you get in the habit or build up your CV capacity, then the enjoyment may come from being able to spend some quality healthy time with friends without feeling like your lungs will explode. ;)

 

I run outside usually and don't really mind running in the cold so much. Once the snow comes, I'm not sure how much I'd want to because I prefer running on the trails near my house and I don't think they get cleared off. I've heard SO much about Zombies Run, but I just don't really find zombie stories that compelling these days. I might give it a try anyway, though since it comes so highly recommended!

 

Thanks!

 

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I used that app this challenge! Completely saved me from failing! I was excited to run to hear the stories and the occasional zombie chase was exciting!

 

You toooo. Augh, I'll try it. ;)

 

So I am extending these challenge goals for one more week and starting next challenge's goals next week, but I don't think I'll keep posting to this thread. I DID just want to say that I finally deadlifted 210# for the first time since JANUARY. Only one rep, but gah, I was so surprised when it came up that I just didn't even consider resetting for another go. Also OHP'd 80# for the first time ever. FINALLYYYYYYY. I love you, 5/3/1.

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I run outside usually and don't really mind running in the cold so much. Once the snow comes, I'm not sure how much I'd want to because I prefer running on the trails near my house and I don't think they get cleared off. I've heard SO much about Zombies Run, but I just don't really find zombie stories that compelling these days. I might give it a try anyway, though since it comes so highly recommended!

 

Thanks!

It's more about the story than the actual zombies. The zombies just provide motivation to sprint, occasionally.

 

There are probably other story-based running programs out there, I just don't know what they are. :)

 

 

 

Note: listening to it while running outside by yourself in the not-quite-light (whether that's morning or evening) can be pretty creepy. Especially if it's foggy. heh

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I struggle so much with running when I make it a goal. But when it's not a goal, I look forward to it. I hate setting distance goals or time goals or even frequency goals. But I've never wanted to be "a runner" if that makes sense? I have no desire to do races (I did a few and I hated them), other than maybe an occasional fun run that people aren't really doing for time.  

 

I used to enjoy running for the stress relief, and often found myself doing it to avoid a workout where thinking was required. Even lifting, which many say is mindless, involves a lot of thought for me. Apparently my maths aren't good when it comes to plates. ;) And often times I'm like, "Well, that was easier/harder than I thought. Now what do I do for my next set?" Running? None of that. Just hit the pavement, run, done. But if I make myself time my runs, or try to improve distance when I'm not feeling it, or try to run X times this week, it doesn't work. Back when I ran regularly, I ran 2-3 times a week, and it was hardly ever a struggle because after so many days without running, I missed it. But when I make it a goal, my mind rebels. I think partly because I know I'm not good at it, and feel like I'm judging my work. And partly because planning takes the "easy" out of it. 

 

So, that's my back story. What's your brain saying when you DON'T run? 

 

Right now I'm looking for an easy route I can take safely and regularly. With the only goal being to feel better after than I did before. End of goal. 

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Ugh, plate math; it takes me forever sometimes. I've been tempted to write out the plate math that the 5/3/1 calculator I use spits out for me because my brain gets so foggy when I am lifting (especially over the past 5-6 weeks while working at a caloric deficit). I wind up kind of half chanting numbers to myself while squatting down holding a wide assortment of plates, narrowing one eye to give the barbell on the floor a long glance. I think it took me a good 5 minutes to figure out loading up 170 the other day.

 

My brain is usually saying "ugh, why?" when I want to run. I've gotten some of the "ughhhhs" lately when it's come to getting my ass to the gym in the past couple of weeks, even though I am usually excited for lifting, but I've been able to silence those "ugh"s because my lifting/gymnastics schedule is pretty firmly set in habit at this point, after a year of working on the two on and off. I am always trying to run on a day when I've already worked out, so I think I justify it to myself saying "ehhh, you've already met your ACTUAL goals for the day, so why are you bothering with this piddling little run that will probably just make your shins hurt and your lungs burn?" I'm still figuring how I'd tweak my mental approach to the runs to make it not feel like that. 

 

With a goal focused on HIIT probably filling up my suck-o-meter to the thresholds I can personally bear, I'm not sure working on distance running is going to be in my goals for next challenge anyway. Maybe I can shelve it for now or just have random *BONUS MISSIONS* where I go for a run on a sunny Saturday afternoon during the challenge. 

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My brain is usually saying "ugh, why?" when I want to run. I've gotten some of the "ughhhhs" lately when it's come to getting my ass to the gym in the past couple of weeks, even though I am usually excited for lifting, but I've been able to silence those "ugh"s because my lifting/gymnastics schedule is pretty firmly set in habit at this point, after a year of working on the two on and off. I am always trying to run on a day when I've already worked out, so I think I justify it to myself saying "ehhh, you've already met your ACTUAL goals for the day, so why are you bothering with this piddling little run that will probably just make your shins hurt and your lungs burn?" I'm still figuring how I'd tweak my mental approach to the runs to make it not feel like that.

 

If you figure out a mental hint, please for the love of gods let me know.  I need to run more.  But... lifting+aikido+NP in my week means I also tend to have and "Ugh, running, WHY?" process...

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Surprisingly few! I did use the Ask Google feature thing once or twice though for kicks.

 

 

If you figure out a mental hint, please for the love of gods let me know.  I need to run more.  But... lifting+aikido+NP in my week means I also tend to have and "Ugh, running, WHY?" process...

 

 

Yeah, I'll gladly share if I ever figure it outttt. :P

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