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  • calendula
    replied
    I really connected with a lot of your previous post! I also feel impatient to see results in terms of my strength and fitness and can tend to pile on the challenges in the hopes that I'll see progress towards my goals faster. But since my goals are generally everything (cardio, strength, endurance, speed, mobility), I do tend to hop around a bit and pile intense cardio on to strength training and so forth. In the short term, I notice that this can also lead to feelings of failure as I feel "weak" when in reality what I'm often experiencing is muscle fatigue where my body still hasn't been given the chance to repair and build strength and is also probably confused about what it should be putting energy towards. Over time, as I continue to pile on the workouts, I find myself feeling "weak" every day when really I'm just fatigued in a new way every day.

    It is so difficult for me to grasp the balance of stress and rest. I really appreciate Darebee's approach of microworkouts and active recovery as tools to help us build a habit of exercise and combat a sedentary lifestyle. However, un-learning this "all or nothing" style of exercise will probably take me many years if I'm being honest. I end up reading the Rest, Recovery and Overtraining guide over and over again to keep me pointed in the right direction.
    The other takeaway from Darebee's guide and my own personal experience? SLEEP! Maybe it seems we should pay the same amount of attention to the quality of our sleep as our fitness routines


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  • TopNotch
    replied
    Thanks, Lady Celerity I imagine this will be quite a challenge for someone as impatient as I, but I need/want better results and if this is the way to get them...

    Day 878

    Challenges:
    ​​ Easy Core Challenge Day 14
    ​​ Plank Hero Day 6. How could I have missed a day when I started at the beginning of the month?! I guess that's what happens when you don't actually need to know the date and so don't know it. It's also because we can't cross out those squares any more.

    Today was another big Thinking day. I made plans and crossed them out because they included things that I wanted to do but don't need to do right now. For example, pretty much every day I've read Fremen has done an extraordinary number of Hindu squats and I've thought, "hmm, perhaps I should give them a go, they look like fun." Then I watched the Bioneer waxing lyrical about them, and I thought, "well, okay". And then I thought, "NO! I don't need them right now! Squats will put stress on my knee that is already under stress due to my dodgy ankle - first things first!" So reluctantly, I crossed Hindu squats off my To Do list. This sort of thing continued through the day - so frustrating! Finally I have decided that there is only one thing that I shall focus on other than my Taekwondo and ankle rehab, and that's my glutes. They are the powerhouse and stronger glutes will raise my game in both my MA and running. And they are far enough away from my ankles to be able to work them without really interfering with the ankles. So I went through all the workouts and selected those lower body ones that worked the glutes but did not contain squats or any one-legged poses like leg raises, and I shall do one from time to time but more likely not on training days. And I also started a new challenge:
    Glutes of Steel Day 1.
    I shall also go on gentle walks - no even moderately difficult mountains in the near future. No stress - I figure they'll still be there in three months' time! Just gentle walks. My usual one around the golf course so long as I go anticlockwise. And gentle cycling on the exercise bike. Just enough to raise the HR a bit and keep the blood flowing and make me feel that I'm not stagnating!
    A little bit of weights training with Marcy to top everything off, with a spot of isometrics, and I think that's it for the next three months. I'll finish these challenges, of course, but I can't/mustn't add anything else because I really don't want to get sidetracked again.

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  • Montserrat
    replied
    TopNotch It seems that working out is not only about doing planks, squats and lunges but also involves a lot of thinking!

    Reading about the progress you are making, with all its ups and downs, is very interesting. Keep it up!

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  • Lady Celerity
    replied
    TopNotch your plan sounds good. It's hard to slow down, as it feels like doing less isn't leading to much progress. However, in the long run it usually pays off. I've noticed that I see fewer results when I really push myself over a long period of time; usually a knee or foot starts to hurt and I feel fatigued. By dropping intensity and keeping structure I see better results, and I feel better overall. The trick is to still feel challenged; maybe that has to do with the type of workout rather than intensity. I hope your plan works well, keep us posted.

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  • TopNotch
    replied
    Day 877

    Challenges:
    ​​ Easy Core Challenge Day 13
    ​​ Plank Hero Day 12

    This was mostly a day for cogitation. As usual, the current AMA has both answered questions and raised issues.
    So I'm writing out my thinking here so it's not just on a piece of paper that ends up in the recycling bin.
    There are many things that I need to work on to improve my MA and fitness. I feel that I need to improve my running, my balance, flexibility and mobility, strength, cardiovascular fitness; I need to strengthen my hips, knees and ankles; I need to be able to apply power - oh, in short, I need to become a perfect physical specimen! And so I have devised various programmes to help me achieve these aims, all the while training four nights a week - two nights being mainly cardio, strength, and sparring; and two nights being full body activation with poomsae, which, while not being obviously cardio or strength, does require that pretty much every muscle in the body is turned on for the entire session. For a while, I squeezed running in on the other three days of the week. And I was stretching. And doing the occasional other activity - cycling, walking, weights, whatever seemed good on the day. Oh, and my podiatrist had provided me with exercises that I was supposed to do three times a week. Surprise, surprise, things were not really improving. Why not? Wasn't I working hard enough? What else did I have to do?
    Having recently got a clean bill of health from the cardiologist, I felt that I had no reason not to push myself as much as possible. But then I read something, and I wondered if that were perhaps not the best thing to do. I heard about zone 2 training and it seemed to me like a Good Thing. Unfortunately, it was not as easy for me as it sounded. I didn't expect it to be "easy" as what I had read suggested that staying at such a low level of exertion was difficult, but what I found most difficult was trying to determine exactly what that level of exertion looked like in my body. Fortunately, suddenly an AMA appeared! I tried to formulate my thinking into a coherent question for Damer who gave one of his well-considered responses, and this started me thinking. And then Montserrat asked another question, and in the answer to that, Damer said two more things that resonated with me:
    "When you mix exercises the way you do, you load the body's muscular, cardiovascular and aerobic systems but in a less structured way."
    "The hardest thing for us to realize when we train is that sometimes slower delivers faster results provided we do it in a structured way."
    I had read about how it was preferable not to do two programmes at the same time because they could essentially cancel each other out, so I was being good and I stopped that. What I hadn't realised until just now is that what I was doing was something similar (only nowhere near as good as a Darebee programme!), trying to work on everything I wanted or felt I needed to work on all at the same time. Two words in Damer's response particularly stuck out - structure and slower. I had already recently considered slowing things down with z2 training, but I still lacked structure.
    Obviously, the four nights I train are going to stay there. In a couple of weeks, I'll have three weeks off until the next term starts. So I pencil those into my schedule. What else has to be there? Again, obviously, my podiatry exercises. There is little point going to any therapist if you're not going to take their advice seriously. The podiatrist had said that these exercises were to be done pretty much to fatigue, and that I needed to have at least a day between to recover properly. I said that this term I was training four consecutive nights a week, and he said in that case, to do the exercises on a non-sparring night. Yet even having 7-8 hours between the exercises and poomsae wasn't really enough because my ankles were still so tired. And on other days when I did the exercises, I'd go for a walk either that day or the next. Where was the required rest? No wonder my ankle hasn't improved and I'm starting to feel some extra stress on my knee. So I'll have to do those exercises only two days a week and give myself the appropriate recovery period. Pencil that in. Peculiarly, I never really thought of those exercises as any sort of workout, but looking at them, I have 8 exercises, with 2 or 3 sets of 8-12 reps each (except for the jumping/hopping and skipping exercises which have more reps). Step-ups, calf raises, heel walks with weight, etc - just solid focus on the parts of me below the knee. To fatigue. Do I really need to add anything more?
    Yep. I need to do some upper body work and I need some fun. I can get both of these by playing with Marcy. Perhaps I'll add a bit of leg work before I do the rehab exercises, but with a focus more on the glutes and hips.
    And that'll pretty much be it. I'll still get out for the occasional walk, and sometimes I might hop on the exercise bike for a bit - particularly during the upcoming break, but other than that, I'm going to slow down (I know, I'm not really going so fast right now, but this is a different kind of slow) and try to focus on one thing at a time. It'll be a novel approach for me, and I'm guessing it'll be a challenge. I'll give it three months - I think that's a good length of time to try something; if there's no improvement in that time - well, then I've got it wrong and I'll have to hope for another AMA!
    Tomorrow I'll scratch things down on a piece of paper and give myself some slow structure.

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  • NancyTree
    replied
    Looks like a great hike! 😊

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  • Lady Celerity
    replied
    Looks like you and the lad enjoyed beautiful clear air

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  • Anek
    replied
    Ah well, then it's good that I don't actually have the brand of the seat, as it was installed by the shop they kept the package

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  • TopNotch
    replied
    Day 876

    Challenges:
    ​​ Easy Core Challenge Day 12
    ​​ Plank Hero Day 11. Challenging.

    It was sunny today but still quite windy, and when I went out, that wind brought the temperature down from 11° to 4°. Still, went up a new-to-me mountain. Not a bad climb and great views, but not terribly exciting. The Lad came with me and he quite enjoyed the walk. We were out for just under an hour and I don't think we walked more than about 3k. The elevation was only a little more than about 120m.
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    Poomsae training. As promised, we were taught Shipjin tonight. I'd like to say "we learnt" but I'm not sure I've "learnt" it at all! Every pattern builds on previous patterns but throws in something completely new. This pattern has two, possibly three, "completely new" things, which makes it as interesting as it is challenging.

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  • TopNotch
    replied
    Just teasing, Anek

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  • Anek
    replied

    Do you mean about a comfortable bike seat? I would need to look up what I got, I don't have it here. But it's a wide and I think gel-filled seat, no idea of the brand. Sorry! I can check tomorrow.

    Leave a comment:


  • TopNotch
    replied
    Day 875

    Challenges:
    Easy Core Challenge Day 11
    Plank Hero Day 10
    Exercise bike. About an hour at about 30kph. Still working on this zone 2 training, and at this speed with a tension of 5/10, I think I managed to stick in the zone. Maybe. Depending on what that zone actually is for me. It was quite sustainable except my bum didn't like it. Perhaps Anek can advise me here!

    Taekwondo training. A bit of running to warm up, lunges, reverse lunges, joint warm-up. Then some kicking - 5 instep es in own time, then 10 es, followed by 10 es turning, and 10 es side. On to the wall where we working the hip flexors for a bit before - oh dear - some fun stuff that was done with the children! We each got a small, light plastic hoop and had to put it over an ankle, holding the leg out to the side, and we had to get that hoop spinning. Hmm, yep, that was interesting. Then our partners had to throw the hoop over our extended, side-kick leg, and we had to try to catch the hoop by moving our legs if necessary. A lot depended on whether or not your partner had a good aim, or thought that you were holding your foot up somewhere about 30cm higher than your head. Or was that just my partner? Bit of hilarity there! On to pad work - first just cut kick on the spot, then up the line. My partner kept flinching... We then pushed our partners back and, while holding onto them, did two turning kicks to the pad, which meant you had to stick your bum out. Very elegant! My partner couldn't hold any more, so I got a new one for the next drill - punch with the back hand, then inner crescent kick with back leg over partner's head. My new partner was taller than me but he didn't have to duck much, though my inner crescent isn't so good as my outer. Finally the coach gave us five minutes to do any kick, so my partner (I think he was a third dan) held the body shield, and the four remaining adults did back side kick. The holder was giving good feedback, telling people to pick up the knee first, or not to swing out. To me, he said that my technique was good, but I had to kick him. Ah, too poomsae again! We don't need to worry about actually making contact with anything. I am very pleased, though. Last year, my back side kick was absolutely rubbish. First term this year, it was marginally better - I didn't fall over so often! Now I am relatively confident that I can do something that is recognisably a back side kick!

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  • TopNotch
    replied
    Thanks, DorothyMH

    Day 874

    Challenges:
    Easy Core Challenge Day 10
    Plank Hero Day 9

    Poomsae training. Before training started, I asked our champion how I can get that waist "snap". It constantly eludes me. He said that one drill he used to do was a quick waist twist, just back and forth, but quickly. He said after a little while, you really feel it down your midline. So we had a go (you can do stuff like that at training because we always do odd things and nobody seems to notice!), and he asked me if I felt it but I had to confess that I didn't. Perhaps that's because I've got a relatively strong core? Anyway, I'll keep doing that for a while, and he showed me something else that I'll also practice. Today we learnt another pattern. Or rather, I and two others learnt the pattern - the other three knew it already. Pyongwon. We'd started to learn it quite some time ago, but had never finished it. Today we went through it all, but my memory failed me a few times, and I totally screwed up the end, mostly through memory failure, but that was okay; I'm pleased with what I learnt. I'll go over it again tomorrow. On Friday, we're scheduled to learn the next pattern - Shipjin (which is the fifth black belt pattern, so if all my prospective gradings go as planned, I'll be grading on this pattern in 2035!). We have to download a scoring app on our tablets if we have one, because next week we'll be learning how to score.

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  • DorothyMH
    replied
    Congrats on Better Arms!

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  • TopNotch
    replied
    Day 873

    Challenges:
    Easy Core Challenge Day 9
    Plank Hero Day 8

    Taekwondo training. The temp barely crawled above 8° with the feel temp not going over 1.2° today, so it was hard to get out of my nice warm clothes into my dobok. As we were running laps for our warm-up, the coach commented on how the cool air shoots up our flappy sleeves! After the running, we did 30 seconds, without a break, each of jumping jacks, push-ups, leg raises, push-outs, mountain climbers and pre-squats. Some more stretching. Partner running and balance drills. Then kicking to pads - cut kick and then cut kick and turning kick.

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