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So, what happens to your when you start getting a big head feeling a wee bit too proud of yourself? It reminds you that this is life after all and not a dream. And it all started shortly after my last post.

 

All the kids had a rough day at school and needed help with their schoolwork to right the ship. The weather turned shitty, so my wife moved her furniture restoration project to the basement. The fumes in my usual workout corner of the basement were over powering and I decided to change my workout for the day and go outside to run wind sprints, jump rope and do KB stuff. 31 degrees with a 20 MPH steady wind and a little rain is not a fun environment for rope jumps, the KB swings or even the sprinting as the pavement is slippery. 2 days later, my feet and left ankle still hurt. On top of that, the youngest woke up in the middle of the night complaining of sore legs (he's growing again) and after getting him to sleep and I had just fallen back to sleep the dog (notice I don't call her puppy when she's being decidedly uncute) decided she needed to go outside after slurping down all of her food for the day a few hours before. So, my sleep for the night took a hit, my ankle was throbbing, it was time for work and I had a fantastic attitude to start off yesterday. Then came the family drama.

 

I got a text from my mom that she and my father would not be making it the boy's spring concert at the school after telling them they would be there. I wish I could say this was the first time it happened, but it has become a rather irritating pattern. I'm left informing the kids and get to handle their disappointment and then after they've left the room I get to listen to my wife complain about what rotten grandparents my parents are. But, we did get an email from my MIL that they would be attending the concert. Oh goody, everything was coming up Milhouse! The junior high doesn't have a spring concert, so my daughter stayed home with the puppy and to clean the kitchen. After the concert, the in-laws came over "just for a few minutes". After getting the boys through their homework, ready for bed and in bed, they were still there. So much for my workout. They stayed until our youngest came downstairs and said plainly, "I can't sleep with all this talking." Turned around and went back to bed. They got the message and left 2 hours after the "just for a few minutes" comment, but who's counting.

 

And that was all it took to snap me out of my pity party. He loves Grandma and Grandpa, yet he was direct, honest and wanted to go to sleep. Meanwhile, I was sitting there trying to figure out how to get them to go home and still be polite about it -- all the while becoming angrier. Weird isn't it? I get angry and take it out on the world by doing stuff that's bad for me. Ha! Take that world! Wait...

 

They left, I took a shower and went to bed just like I would've if I had been working out. I got more than 7 hours of sleep last night, today has been more IF, less eating like an ass hole out of anger at everything around me and an overall better mood. I need to get better at letting things go I guess. Perhaps that's something for a future challenge. And gladly the plane only experienced some turbulence for about 36 hours and is back on course.

"You can't climb the ladder of success with your hands in your pockets." - Arnold Schwarzenegger

"The important thing is not to think much but to love much; and so do that which best stirs you to love." - St. Teresa of Avila

Current Challenge: Seeks Balance | Battle Log: Ye Olde Battle Logge | NF Character: Public Profile | Strava 

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Didn't really want to "like" the last post because all of that sounds annoying.  But I do think it's awesome that you were still able to get more than 7 hours of sleep!  I hope you have a good weekend!

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Atlantean Ranger

Epic Quest Level 4

 

"Remember - I'm still the king of the Seven Seas!  And if I wish I can command all the creatures of the sea to attack you - at once!"

 

 

 

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On 4/30/2016 at 7:36 PM, Aquamom said:

Didn't really want to "like" the last post because all of that sounds annoying.  But I do think it's awesome that you were still able to get more than 7 hours of sleep!  I hope you have a good weekend!

The sleep was definitely more work this week, but I did manage 7 hours even for the entire week. Whew! It was an annoying 36 hours or so, but in the grand scheme of things was short lived. Didn't make me less angry in the moment though.

 

12 hours ago, Xena said:

Annoying all around! Maybe you could coach/bribe your youngest to be helpfully blunt on other occasions ;-)

I am continually amazed by how simple everything is to little kids, and how much I could learn from them if I would just pay attention. I need to figure out how to have him teach me how to be more blunt and direct. What's weird is a tend to be incredibly direct with other people in my life. Family on the other hand...so, yeah, for now I just need o make sure I keep him near me when the extended family is around.

"You can't climb the ladder of success with your hands in your pockets." - Arnold Schwarzenegger

"The important thing is not to think much but to love much; and so do that which best stirs you to love." - St. Teresa of Avila

Current Challenge: Seeks Balance | Battle Log: Ye Olde Battle Logge | NF Character: Public Profile | Strava 

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On 3/29/2016 at 2:41 PM, jstanlick said:

For those of you who are also fans of Mark's Daily Apple you might already know what I mean about sleeping low. Essentially, avoid conventional wisdom to replace used glycogen be eating carbs right after intense exercise at night, combining that with intermittent fasting and only consuming carbs during the IF feeding window. That's the shortest explanation I can come up with, but feel free to follow the link and get more details.

 

For the last 11 weeks I have been following a program that has me feeling pretty good after having dropped from 220 to 212 pounds on the scale and dropping 4.2% in bodyfat percentage. The downside is that the first 6 pounds on the scale happened in the first 6 weeks, so it's kind of plateaued since then. I've got 1 more week of that program which corresponds to zero week and then it's time to either start it over again or try something new. With the success I've had, I kinda want to keep going with it but I feel like I could've done better with a better diet. I did break a few bad habits and perhaps I should be content to move along at that pace. So, I've decided to split the difference and do something different...for 1 month and then go back to the original plan. Consider it a 1 month de-load phase, but not quite. I'm still going to be running sprints and doing interval weight training circuits. However, I'm going to attempt to switch up my schedule so I'm doing those at night, sleeping more in the morning and drastically changing when I eat. Hopefully that kick starts some more serious fat burning. So here goes...

 

Week zero goals:

Finish what I started:  Yesterday was upper body training, today was sprints, tomorrow is a leg day and Thursday is upper body again. Friday is sprints, Saturday is legs and Sunday is rest. At that time, I will take all new measurements to see what the final tally is.

 

Week 1 - 4 Goals for days 1 - 6 in the week:

Goal #1: Intermittent fasting to eat only between noon and 8 PM. This is setup well by my previous challenges of eliminating the morning drive thru and the night time snacking. So, it's really a continuation of the path I've been on.

 

Goal #2: No carbs at all after training sessions. Protein is okay, but no carbs or the glycogen depletion experiment is out the window.

 

Goal #3: Moving training to the evening hours will be a switch for me, and probably the hardest part of this challenge as well as the most important. If this doesn't happen everything else falls apart. Without the training there is no glycogen depletion. I've always worked out in the morning as I can get it in before the day gets in the way and I end up not doing something at night. But, honestly, once the kids are done with homework and in bed, I'm either watching TV or playing video games. There's no good reason why I couldn't workout at night and just get more sleep in the morning. Even if it's just 5 sets of 20 burpees (just, ha!), that's not that time consuming, extremely tiring and can be done in any weather.

 

Day 7 is a rest day to do whatever I feel like.

 

Week 1 - 4 Goals for everyday in the week:

Goal #4: Sleep. Gots to get me some ZZZ's or once again this will fall apart. So, at least 7 hours of sleep a night. The ol' FitBit has me averaging only 6 1/2 over the last 3 months so I definitely have a lot of work to do. This is something I need to do regardless of training or nutrition. It could be a big reason why I've plateaued in the first place.

 

This is a rather unusual challenge for me. I don't generally create goals that are dependent on other goals as it seems like a setup for failure. But, I've promised myself that this is just for this month. Then it's back to dancing with the date that brought me this far in 2016 for the May challenge.

Okay, so let' wrap this up.

 

I think the grand experiment has been a success. The zero week was not a great one, but week's 1-4 went really well. Since I did my weigh in and body measurements to start that week so as to allow myself to fully judge the efficacy of sleeping low. Let's get to the goals.

Goal #1: Intermittent fasting went reeeeaaaaalllllyyyy well. There were only 2 days that I was non-compliant: 1) my birthday and 2) the aforementioned family stress day. I'm wondering if this goal and my last goal might have had the biggest impact in my success.

 

Goal #2: No carbs after workouts. This one ended up be fairly easy since I was working out at night. My workouts ended up after my IF feeding window, so I not only didn't eat carbs, I didn't eat anything.

 

Goal #3: Workouts at night. I was worried about this because it has always been too easy to let things get in the way in the past. But, making it a priority and being a little selfish this time around worked well. It dovetailed nicely in with the rest of my goals. It made it easier to fall asleep quickly (I was worried about the exact opposite), it got me away from staring at screens (which probably made the sleeping part easier as well), and I went to bed feeling good that I accomplished something that day regardless of how the rest of the day went.

 

Goal #4: Sleep at least 7 hours a day. I really didn't think I'd hit this. Especially after the first week. But, for the last 4 weeks 7 hours, 3 minutes of sleep. Not much over 7 hours, but its still over 7 hours and considering week 1 had an average of 6:41 each day, I think I did alright. Plus, I don't feel like I'm walking through a fog in the afternoons and I don't feel a need to eat something in the morning to help me wake up. Because of the extra sleep I don't feel exhausted at the end of the day and want to just veg out in front of the TV.

 

I was really surprised at how well the goals fit together to achieve the ultimate goal. So, how do I measure that? Lots of ways. I ran a 3.37 miles at the end of March at a 8:35 pace. Yesterday I ran 4.56 miles at an 8:22 pace. Mind you, this was without training for running. I ran once a week on the weekends on my cheat day. The rest of the week was short, intense, glycogen depleting workouts with body-weight circuits, KB complexes, sprints, jump ropes, etc. To increase my distance 50% and still lower my average pace/mile by 13 seconds was awesome. The other thing about that 4 1/2 mile run -- my split for the last 1/2 mile was the fastest of all of them as it was 7:54/mile. So, I still had some kick left at the end.

 

Also, the body & weight measurements. From April 4th - April 30th, my weight went down 5 pounds. I lost a combined 3.125 inches from my waist, chest and neck while gaining slightly in my arms and legs (1/2 inch combined). Considering I carry all of my fat in my chest and abdomen (my legs, arms and hips have never carried much excess flab), these are great results for me. In fact, this challenge has gone well enough that I'm debating changing up what my plan was for this upcoming month. I was going to go back to what I did the previous 3 months since this was an "experiment" to try some new things for me. Now, I'm thinking some of these changes should become a more permanent part of my routine rather than an everything 4 month surprise engagement. I definitely think IF and more sleep will be part of my routine. Night time workouts will probably stay as well. The workouts themselves might see more weightlifting return and less of the HITT and Tabata style, but on days I'm pressed for time they would make good substitutes. Plus, if the weather would ever get its head out its ass and warm up, I'd like to do more running or playing basketball with the kids. Hmmm, decisions for this next challenge, decisions, decisions...

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"You can't climb the ladder of success with your hands in your pockets." - Arnold Schwarzenegger

"The important thing is not to think much but to love much; and so do that which best stirs you to love." - St. Teresa of Avila

Current Challenge: Seeks Balance | Battle Log: Ye Olde Battle Logge | NF Character: Public Profile | Strava 

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19 hours ago, Xena said:

Congrats! Big success! It's nice to see your very positive energy after this challenge. I'm thinking of some little bits to try and steal. Have a couple ideas :-)

 

 

Thanks! By all means, steal away!

 

4 hours ago, lilbichy said:

GRATZY!!! sounds like an awesome challenge!  Excited to follow you on the next one!

 

Gracias! Although, the next one might be a bit boring as it is going to look a lot like this one. The only difference might be the workouts themselves. Planning on more strength training coming up.

  • Like 1

"You can't climb the ladder of success with your hands in your pockets." - Arnold Schwarzenegger

"The important thing is not to think much but to love much; and so do that which best stirs you to love." - St. Teresa of Avila

Current Challenge: Seeks Balance | Battle Log: Ye Olde Battle Logge | NF Character: Public Profile | Strava 

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