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Nighctrawler_Bamff Refocuses

 

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Rescued from a misguided mob by a mysterious telepath, Nightcrawler now finds himself on a small jet with a man he knows nothing about other than his amazing and terrifying power.  

 

"Danke for the timely rescue, mein freund, and excuse the mistrust, but may I ask who you are and where we are going"

 

"Of course, Kurt.  I am Professor Charles Xavier.  I run a school in New York for young mutants, teaching them to use their abilities to aid mankind.  My students form a team called the X-Men.  You will be safe there and, if you are interested, we could use someone with your gifts."

 

"And if I refuse?"

 

"You will be free to leave and I will fly you anywhere you would like.  This is an offer, Kurt, not a demand.  I only ask that you give it some thought.  The choice will be yours."

 

Kurt is given the opportunity to be alone with his thoughts as they continued their long flight to America.  He takes the time to think back on all he has accomplished in the short time since he began performing for the circus he had been raised in.

 

 

Translation:  Time to review past challenge goals and get back on track!  I have not been doing well, especially with eating habits, for the majority of the last challenge and need to refocus.

 

 

Main Quest:  

As always...Gymnastics tricks!  I am continuing to work on back handsprings and aerials.  

 

Goals:

1.  Track Weight Watchers points!  The program works well for me, but I have fallen out of the habit of tracking what I am eating and, since it wasn't a part of the last challenge goals, I disregarded eating healthy all together and have been steadily gaining weight over that time.  Time to knock that off!

2.  Exercise!  All days off work must include exercise or a workout of some sort in addition to gymnastics.

3.  Splits!  Still working these.  Haven't really been giving it my all and feel like the progress pictures that I stopped doing after the first challenge that I worked on these would help motivate and will show the slow progress.

 

Life Goals:

1.  Cake!  So!  The baby shower cake I made for my coworker was so successful, one of her friends has hired me to make her baby's first birthday cake!  First cake I've ever made that wasn't a gift!  Still working out details, cake is to be finished 12/3/2014.  

2.  Choir!  Continue practicing for Christmas Choir.  Concert is 12/14/2014.  Already have most of it memorized pretty well, but will need to keep working on it until then.

3.  Costume!  Comic con is in January!  Need to get working on my upgraded Gambit costume!  Not planning to finish this within this challenge, but need to make some good progress.

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Nice! Definitely get back into the habit of splits progress pictures -- they're clutch when you are getting in this stage where you can't really tell on your own whether you've made any progress. I think I've mentioned it before, but try working oversplits sometimes after practice or once you are really, really warmed up at home: place your front foot on a mat, a few books, or some other type of raised surface and go into splits from there. Just make sure your hips STAY square -- if you are not square, you'll feel a stretch but it is not stretching the actual areas you need for nice splits and it encourages bad form.

 

That's great news about the cake! It really was very impressive, so I am not surprised people are taking notice. :)

 

 

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Nice! Definitely get back into the habit of splits progress pictures -- they're clutch when you are getting in this stage where you can't really tell on your own whether you've made any progress. I think I've mentioned it before, but try working oversplits sometimes after practice or once you are really, really warmed up at home: place your front foot on a mat, a few books, or some other type of raised surface and go into splits from there. Just make sure your hips STAY square -- if you are not square, you'll feel a stretch but it is not stretching the actual areas you need for nice splits and it encourages bad form.

That's great news about the cake! It really was very impressive, so I am not surprised people are taking notice. :)

You haven't mentioned that...will working over splits help even if I can't do regular ones?

Hashed out details on cake last night! Same type of cake as the last one: chocolate cake, berry filling, and vanilla buttercream. Theme is ladybugs. Cake will be white with a few flowers, grass up the sides, little ladybugs scattered around with black dots for their "footprints", two of them making the baby's name on the cake, then a small smash cake decorated as a large ladybug off centered on top. The picture in my head and the really poorly drawn picture in Paint look fun and exciting! Hopefully it will turn out how I picture it haha!

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Yes, oversplits can help even if you do not have your splits yet. They can be very useful for getting down that last 2-4 inches. I would definitely not recommend them for anyone who is just learning splits, but if you've been close for a while, they can help fast track you down to the floor, just like partnered stretches. 

 

You can do pushes of 5-8 seconds beyond where you would normally hang out at in your oversplits for maybe 3-5 sets as well to play with the edge of your limits. 

 

Again just make sure you are REALLY REALLY warmed up and do not do oversplits before warming up with your regular split and the lead-in stretches to that, deep lunge, hamstring stretches, etc. 

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Ok...so really horribly done concept cake drawing on Paint on the computer:

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The giant ladybug on top is a small (~4in round) smash cake for baby to eat/smash.

Like I said earlier, this is the first cake I've sold, so I'm trying to remember to keep track of how much time and money I spend on it so I can figure out if I'm actually making money off the cake and if so, how much. I'm charging $40 for the final product. So far I've spent $5 on chocolate melts for making the little ladybugs and about an hour consulting/research/coming up with ideas/paint drawing.

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Great challenge. Love all the creativity in your life goals.The cake sounds so cute. I used to make cakes when my son was little. I had fun doing it, but stopped due to my habit of eating the leftover bowls of frosting :redface-new:

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Great challenge. Love all the creativity in your life goals.The cake sounds so cute. I used to make cakes when my son was little. I had fun doing it, but stopped due to my habit of eating the leftover bowls of frosting :redface-new:

Ha! Thanks! My problem is the top of the cake I cut off to make it flat! Mmm!

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Ha! Thanks! My problem is the top of the cake I cut off to make it flat! Mmm!

Oh yeah, nom, forgot about that, that was good to too. I mean you have to taste it to make sure it's good, right? ;) 

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...just tumbling by to check out your challenge... :) Good going - are you working on anything else gymnastic other than the backhandsprings and aerials? You could maybe look at backflips, or frontflips if you want some more variety. What's your current ability in BHSs and aerials?

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...just tumbling by to check out your challenge... :) Good going - are you working on anything else gymnastic other than the backhandsprings and aerials? You could maybe look at backflips, or frontflips if you want some more variety. What's your current ability in BHSs and aerials?

I've landed a few front tucks recently on the floor on my feet! Only tried standing back tucks a few times on the floor with more success than I expected. I can do front and back easily on the tumble track!

Current back handspring progress:

https://vimeo.com/111607375

https://vimeo.com/111607404

Floor isn't consistent...good days and bad days...but coach Nick said the RO-BHS-BHS-BT in that first video is getting consistent enough to start moving it to the floor soon!

And aerials:

https://vimeo.com/111607450

Landed two of them from an elevated mat onto a mat in the foam pit on Halloween! They were really bad, but made a lot of progress of figuring out what I'm doing wrong and right and how things feel. Still have a ways to go...

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Aerials are getting soooo close! I put my hands down for all of them, but I could feel the difference when I had to push on the floor to finish getting around or when my hands touched and basically rested on the floor and probably could have made it without putting them down. The latter were not consistent enough though, and when I'd try it again I had to push on the floor to get around.

I was so excited to go work on them again tonight, but was reminded yesterday of a going away party tonight (which was a blast!).

Went for a run Monday and Tuesday, getting a bit cold for it...Tuesday my knee started not liking it a little bit and I ended up walking half of the 5K route so I didn't exacerbate the issue (felt fine later). It was FREEZING!! Wouldn't have been bad if I was running, but the low temperature and the really heavy wind made the second half of the "workout" awful! Hadn't worn a jacket because I planned on running the whole time and would have been fine. O well! Got it done and don't regret it!

As far as eating this week...used the remainder of my weekly points allowance today for the going away party, will have to be good the next two days. Worth it!

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Nice, you're doing really well with the gymnastics!

 

A physics note about he aerials: you probably realise that if you make your radius smaller you spin faster (e.g. tuck tight to complete a back tuck). In an aerial, having your hands outstretched makes you spin slightly less slowly than if they were retracted. I don't have any experience with the move, but physics says that once you have the consistency/power/confidence to try them hands-free, you'll find them slightly easier than you might expect :)

 

(Although I'm not advocating trying this until you actually feel ready)

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Nice, you're doing really well with the gymnastics!

 

A physics note about he aerials: you probably realise that if you make your radius smaller you spin faster (e.g. tuck tight to complete a back tuck). In an aerial, having your hands outstretched makes you spin slightly less slowly than if they were retracted. I don't have any experience with the move, but physics says that once you have the consistency/power/confidence to try them hands-free, you'll find them slightly easier than you might expect :)

 

(Although I'm not advocating trying this until you actually feel ready)

 

Completely agree with the physics logic.  However, the "proper" arms that my coach wants is straight out, not tucked in:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sYWW0BW51yI#t=51

Which I'm not worrying about at this point...that will come later when I can actually land them haha.

 

Do you have any panel mats you can use to throw aerials off of? Might help you get through the mental barrier of just NOT putting your hands down! :)

 

We do!  That is what I practice on the most to give me that little bit of extra time to get around.  Didn't use them last week, but when I am using it, they still aren't consistent.  Just need to do lots of them!

 

 

Week 1 Review:

Tough week.  One of my days off was taken by radiology training, but one of my work days was taken up by the lecture portion.  Was nice to not be in the vet hospital and do something different,  Also got a ton of free food, which made it worth it!  Difficulty though...Banfield (the vet clinic I work for) is owned by Mars...the chocolate company...the central office where we had radiology training had SUPER cheap chocolate!  I got really excited about how inexpensive they were and ended up buying two CASES of m&ms!  Spent $7 on 48 bags!!!!  But now they're in my apartment calling my name all the time, haha!

 

Gymnastics:  Aerial getting really close!  So exciting!!

Food:  Even with all the food challenges this week, I tracked everything!  Used all the weekly points allowance AND all the exercise points I had earned, but still stayed within the allowance!!  Down nearly 2lbs this week! 

Exercise:  Only had two days off this week (we work 12 hour shifts and normally get three days off a week), so only worked out twice.  Also went to gymnastics on Wednesday, but we had a going away party for a vet that had been training with us on Friday, so I didnt get to go to gymnastics that day.  

Splits:  Definite difference in depth between this week and last week!  Took progress pics last night, will post them in a minute from my phone.  

Life:  Finalized arrangements for cake.  Got my work schedule for next month, so we figured out the best time for her to pick up the cake and my timeline for when I need to do the different parts so the cake can be as fresh as possible for the party.

Pattern cut out for Gambit's trench coat, cut out muslin fabric to do a trial run, and got the first pieces pinned together.  Patterns are VERY confusing if you've never used one before.  I have wasted SO much time staring at the pattern and the instructions and searching tutorials online because I have no idea what I'm doing haha.  Also doesnt help that the pattern is labeled "advanced" and that is definitely not my skill level haha!

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Hello!  I saw in the weekly review updates that you're doing a splits challenge, too!  I'm working on the - when one leg is front and the other is back.  Seeing your gymnast videos made me thing that I should do some Googling for ideas on more stretches and what not.  Looks like you're doing great!

 

I love the video of your tumbles on the trampoline - my favorite part was the smile at the end!

 

The lady bug cake is adorable.  I just love the idea of a lady bug extra to be just for the baby to smash!

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Not sure how I missed the appearance of Nightcrawler in the forums!

 

Following along because X-men (duh), but staying for the gymnastics and cake.  ;)

 

What sort of routine did you use to get to your current level of splits?  And what sort of training are you doing now?

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