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2013 Onwards to Adventure!!!

Discussion in 'Fitness Journals' started by Sharv, Sep 14, 2012.

  1. Sharv

    Sharv Active Member

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    Well, its been a long, long, long while since I've been entering and visiting the site. Had a few serious injuries and other odds and ends but have remained active all the same....just not quite like before. Previous journals have been lifting and bulking focused. And I've met with some success there but a nasty shoulder injury has really set me back over the last year. Its 'mostly' rehabbed but still a nagging problem. This past year has therefore allowed some time for reflection on what it is that I really enjoy and want to be doing.

    In a nutshell I like being fit from a strength and cardio perspective. I'd love to just be able to do anything someone challenges me with. I'm not stressed about bulking. I'd love to be bigger but its a bundle of work to get there and maintain given my body type and I've resolved that isn't what I really want anyway. Just fit. Fit overall. So....here we are.

    Over the last while I've been doing various strength work, bike riding a bunch and running (road and trail). Just did my first 10 km run last weekend (in over 15 years) and it felt great. But what I really want is to get back into doing multi-event challenges and adventure racing. I used to do a bundle of triathlons and duathlons in my 20's and loved the challenge. My body type is a slim and high metabolism one so it lends itself pretty well to this sorta stuff - though my joints aren't as springy as they used to be - now in my 40's. The rising trend in adventure racing courses like mud runs, spartan and tough mudder races looks like just the all-round challenge I need. Haven't done one before but I'm very excited to do a few next season.

    My tremendously fit brother in law is leaning heavy on me to do a Tough Mudder race in May 2013 though I honestly was thinking of trying my hand at a few shorter distance races first. However, good decision-making hasn't always been my strong suit :lol:. Regardless, there's going to be a few of these races in my future for Spring and Summer of 2013 and I wanted to track the training journey to get there.

    I'll post my starting stats just for the record in the near future. I'm not going to be bulking and won't be working out too much in the gym yet but the tracking might be interesting so I'll do it once per month. My cardio is pretty strong but not strong enough yet for me. There's 8 months until May (and the Tough Mudder) and I think I can rock my self up a fair amount by then.

    Next 3 months:

    Running: 2 - 3 days per week incl 1 short dist, 1 hill focused, 1 distance on trails.

    Cross train: biking 3 - 4 times per week. Usually just to work and back (10km each way) but will add some mileage on the way in to work.

    Strength conditioning: going to run through P90X for next 3 months. Swapping out some of the cardio-type sessions with the running and moving things around very slightly accordingly. There's a tonne of body-weight obstacles in the races so dips, chins, pull-ups and pushups will be a big focus for me and P90X sessions seem well-suited. I've run through the programme a number of years ago and I was happy with it. The tweaky shoulder will be a challenge overall; however, it seems worse with 'push' than 'pull'. I'm going to be honest right up front. I can't do a whole bunch of pull ups yet but I need to be able to. No ego tripping and exaggerating just honesty. I'll get there.

    Once we hit December weather is going to be getting crappy for excessive outdoor routines. May switch to the gym for a month or two. We'll see when we get there.

    Today....a rest day
     
    #1 Sharv, Sep 14, 2012
    Last edited: Sep 17, 2012
  2. Sharv

    Sharv Active Member

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    What a great run today!!! Saturday is my set trail running day and it went great. Yesterday (Friday) should have been a leg workout day so I made up for it by throwing in some hill / stair circuits. Basically 1 km to the trail valley and a 4 km out then back in the valley for a total of 10 km. A couple of runs right through the creek and every bunch of mud I could find. I suppose I looked a bit odd to all the other folks out for their morning walk - lol. Perfect workout - no joint pain at all but quads and glutes started to stiffen up on the way home so I'm pretty sure I'll be feeling this one tomorrow!! :claphigh:
     
    #2 Sharv, Sep 15, 2012
    Last edited: Sep 17, 2012
  3. Sharv

    Sharv Active Member

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    Sunday was a rest day but threw in some Abs and Core exercises for the heck of it. Legs were were stiff but not as bad as I'd expected. Left shoulder wasn't happy with the sustained arm-swinging of the previous day's run. All that said, I didn't feel as bad as I'd thought I would.

    Much to my dismay, I woke up too late this morning (Monday) to fit in my Chest & Back workout for today :(. So, I made it a Cardio day and threw in a longer bike route to work accordingly (17.5 km to work and 10 km back home).

    Tomorrow will be morning Chest & Back and a short road run ~5km later in the day.

    Note going forward...must stick to the workout schedule!!!
     
    #3 Sharv, Sep 17, 2012
    Last edited: Sep 17, 2012
  4. Sharv

    Sharv Active Member

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    Chest & Back routine done! Note that on the advice of my physiotherapist I'm doing all the pushups on an incline. I'm able to knock off 25 for each set and each variation (for a total of about 200) and I'm feeling it so it must be doing some good - lol. As I chug along and strengthen, I'll drop the incline a bit. Would be nice to be back on the floor again but the last time I got all hero about it I wrecked my shoulder again. Baby steps. Schedule is a bit wonky so I'll be doubling up today to be on track for tomorrow. So, going for a 5 km run at lunch. Its raining. Guess I'll get wet. :nod:
     
    #4 Sharv, Sep 18, 2012
    Last edited: Sep 18, 2012
  5. Sharv

    Sharv Active Member

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    Overview of 90 Day Schedule:

    As per my initial post, I am following the P90X program with modifications to fit in my running 3x per week. P90X program should wrap up early December. Biking to work with occasional mileage added is bonus cross training. Below is the current program but there will be modifications as I progress through the P90X program. I'll post accordingly. I'm considering this foundation / conditioning phase. I eat quite clean already and body fat is low. Am increasing protein intake but that's all for now.

    Monday:

    Chest & Back / Abs (P90X)
    Bike to work (bonus)

    Tuesday:

    Run 5-8 km - currently flat will graduate to hills/intervals/circuits/plyo

    Wednesday:

    Arms & Shoulders / Abs (P90X)
    Bike to work (Bonus)

    Thursday:

    Flat run 5-8 km

    Friday:

    Legs & Back / Abs (P90X)
    Bike to work (bonus)

    Saturday:

    Distance run (trails) 8 - 12 km - will progress to 16 - 20 km (10-12miles) race distance of TM by Spring. Will potentially hold steady or dip in dead of Winter but end goal is same. Various plyo throughout.

    Sunday:

    Active rest / sore legs day :)
     
  6. Whoracle

    Whoracle Well-Known Member

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    Another person who has the tough mudder bug I see. I want to do the one in so cal next year myself. Good luck man off to a good start.
     
  7. Sharv

    Sharv Active Member

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    Arms & Shoulders workout done this morning and rode the bike to work (no extra mileage though...tight on time...so it'll be 10 km each way only). A&S went very well. Had to sub out some of the Shoulder Press exercises with other shoulder exercises since my wonky shoulder doesn't like those one bit. Weight was light on them and there was no pain in any of the exercises. So very happy about that!

    Tomorrow, a lunch hour 5-6 km with our office Marathoner/Ironwoman. I can look forward to sore calves....again :)
     
  8. Sharv

    Sharv Active Member

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    Thx Whoracle! I haven't registered yet but the committment is made to do the Mudder in May in Toronto. These races look like a blast and a great full-body challenge. Thankfully it looks like there will be about a half dozen in our 'team' so there'll be people to push me off things, kick me in the ass or carry me as required :)
     
  9. Sharv

    Sharv Active Member

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    A quick note on my philosophy here. As noted I'm planning to do the Tough Mudder in May (maybe another race or 2 as well). Anyway, for those not aware, the TM is a 10-12 m (16 - 20 km) race with numerous military obstacles sprinkled throughout (about 20 - 25). The terrain is also exceptionally hilly. Endurance is key but not in the traditional marathon runner kind of way. Running will be key to training but must incoroporate lots of hills and trails. Also, necessary to keep in mind is that its really going to be 20 x 0.5 mile runs with an obstacle between each. As the race progresses, obstacles will occur while your are progressively fatigued (and wet and covered in mud). In my mind this translates as overall endurance and not just running. If you're a strong runner, it'll kick your ass. If you're muscular with no decent cardio, it'll kick your ass. I'm a fair runner and modestly toned. There's work to do!

    My intention is to go in to this thing strong and not just to finish (though that is a goal in itself :)) but to do it as best as I can with proper training and preparation. As such, I've tried to create a plan which addresses the demands of the event and my areas for improvement. I'll be changing things up and progressing through phases towards event day. Likely more intervals, more plyo, more trails and more hills. Bloody burpees, hill running and stair climbing makes me nauseous but its gotta happen. The fun part will be that this will all be happening in the Winter too :lol:.

    If anyone reading this has done one or similar race before and has some wisdom to add I'd really appreciate it. Cheers!
     
    #9 Sharv, Sep 19, 2012
    Last edited: Sep 20, 2012
  10. Sharv

    Sharv Active Member

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    I have a meeting today so no lunch hour run. In compensation, added some mileage on the way to work - 20 km in and then 10 km home.

    Dangit, had a slow motion wipeout on my bike just as I arrived at work this morning. Had to avoid a pedestrian and hammer the brakes. "Almost" saved it. Didn't hit the guy but dumped the bike. Only a bit banged up but hit my knee pretty good. And, oh, look at this, tomorrow is Legs day - ha ha ha. Nice to see the brakes work but inertia was a bit of an issue :)

    Tomorrow is Legs & Back day.
     
    #10 Sharv, Sep 20, 2012
    Last edited: Sep 20, 2012
  11. Shamie

    Shamie Senior Member

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    For a successful Toughmudder, you need really good upper body strength. You need it for the Berlin Walls, Mt. Everest, also for getting accross the monkey bars over the water, and a similiar thing with gymnastic rings. I don't have good upper body strength, so while I was able to the Berlin walls, I couldn't do the last two. I think most of the toughmudder events are mostly similiar, so probably the one you are doing has the same or similiar obstacles. Chin ups / pull ups would be good training. Which location are you doing?
     
  12. Sharv

    Sharv Active Member

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    Thanks Shamie for the input. I totally agree with your comments on upper body and I'm in exactly the same position. While I'll be maintaining and upping my running and including trails and hills, upper body is a big area for me to improve. Next 3 months will be general strengthening which will see some improvements but I'll be ramping that up in December especially pulls, chins and dips. Doing the event in Toronto....looks hilly. Otherwise, same types of obstacles I think. Some which worry me, scare me and terrify me. :) Which one did you do?

    I also like the advice, 'an unconvential challenge requires unconventional training methods!'
     
    #12 Sharv, Sep 20, 2012
    Last edited: Sep 20, 2012
  13. Shamie

    Shamie Senior Member

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    I did one this past May in Pocono Manor, PA. It also was relatively hilly. It is in the Pocono Mountains, but it is not exactly the Alps. :)

    I also was scared before the event (I almost didn't go). But it was no where as scary as I expected. One thing I wanted to do was - Walk the Plank. That was climbing up stairs (it seemed pretty high to me) and jumping into the water. I chickened out, and skipped that obstacle. That is the one reason I want to do it again, to gain back the respect I lost for myself by skipping that one.
     
  14. Sharv

    Sharv Active Member

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    Good to hear its not as bad in the end. I hear ya on the Plank. I'm just hoping to just keep moving forward and not think about it too much. My bro-in-law is a take-no-prisoners kind of guy and he'd never let me live it down so I'll have no choice but to just go for it. I'm hoping there'll be some pretty young gal up there at the same time and she can take pitty on me and hold my hand :lol:. Gravity will do the rest.

    I second going for it again and conquer it!!! :tucool:
     
  15. Sharv

    Sharv Active Member

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    Legs & Back done. Felt like stopping a few times with a "that's probably good enough" running thru my head. Soldiered on and finished it. Rode the bike to work. No extra distance so 10 km in and 10 km home. Will do the Abs tonight and some chins/pulls in the garage....

    Side note, I don't have any chin bar in the house so the chins/pulls in the P90X routines are just rows with the band. Not ideal AT ALL but thery're doing something at least and don't seem to bother my shoulder. So I've set Mondays and Fridays in the evening to do chins/pulls in the garage off the rafter support - ha ha ha - necessity is the mother of invention. I'd read that a good way to improve your chin/pull numbers is to figure out your max and then try 5 sets of 50% max and then just keep chugging along and after a week try adding one more rep etc etc. So, if you can do 4 as a max, then do 5 sets of 2. Going forward I'll log in the numbers for this since I think it'll be a quick and simple judge of progress. Perhaps, I'll do underhand on Mondays and overhand on Fridays to keep it nice and simple.

    From prev attempts 5 seemed my max. Was able to do 6 x 2 overhand today.

    Will bump to 5 x 3 next week.

    Tomorrow is trail running day. My fav :).
     
    #15 Sharv, Sep 21, 2012
    Last edited: Sep 21, 2012
  16. Sharv

    Sharv Active Member

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    Yee haw!!! Did my trail run today. Rained last night so it was nice and muddy :). Did about 9 km. felt pretty rough given that yesterday was a legs workout but got it done! Given the rain the creek was running fast and deep so no running thru the creek :(. Wore the new trail running shoes. They were awesome! It hurt a little to get them dirty tho :) Tomorrow I rest.

    Found a school yard with a good set of monkey bars where I'm not dragging my feet just near my house. Maybe 14 bars? Anyway, I ran thru them at the end of my run. Wasn't easy but I did it :lol: I'll keep that in there and hopefully get to a point where I can run thru them and turn around and go back in one shot (maybe even more!). There are other interesting equipment pieces there too and a big field that might allow for a good circuit train in future.
     
    #16 Sharv, Sep 22, 2012
    Last edited: Sep 24, 2012
  17. Sharv

    Sharv Active Member

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    Successfully rested on Sunday :).

    Chest & Back done this morning. Feeling like hard work but no sharp pain with any movements. Rode to work - no extra kms so 10 km in and 10 km out. Will do Abs and chins tonight and aim for 5x3.

    Shoulder is feeling pretty beat up from last week tho I think its mostly the running (since its happened before). No sharp pain (whew) just really worked and tired I think (hope). Holding it in your typical runner pose and then pumping it back and forth for an hour ain't what Mr Buggered-Up-Shoulder likes. The P90X schedule is probably working it quite a bit too tho I'm being quite cautious. Will book apt with physio soon and see how things are going. I don't want to wreck it but I was advised to work it.

    Tomorrow is running day. Somewhere between 5 - 6 km. Just flat but quicker pace with running partner at work. Damn calves hurt for 2 days last week when I ran with her lol. Looks like the Thursday noon hour run folks like to put in some misc workouts every km (ish) so maybe my schedule will switch slightly for a bit. So....Tuesday 5-8 km flat at pace. Thursday 5 km flat with plyo/strength intervals. We'll see how it goes.

    Status Update: Feeling pretty beat up (especially my shoulder) and a bit tired generally. Knees are holding up with the running which is good. Attitude is really positive. I'm excited to be at it and I think the workouts are the right choices at this stage. Really enjoying the Saturday trail run which will be an evolving day to emulate mud race type event. Need to put in more hills tho.
     
    #17 Sharv, Sep 24, 2012
    Last edited: Sep 24, 2012
  18. Whoracle

    Whoracle Well-Known Member

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    Maybe a couple days of rest are in order to get your shoulder better are in order?
     
  19. Sharv

    Sharv Active Member

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    Funny u mention taking a break. Started feeling a bit under the weather as the day wore on. Tried to do my chins but felt exhausted. Only managed 4x3. Think I'll skip the run tomorrow and try and get some rest.
     
  20. Sharv

    Sharv Active Member

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    I hate rest days imposed for injury or other health problems :(. Trying to remind myself how rest is an important part of the training process. Shoulder isn't that bad today and not feeling sick at the moment. Hate missing a run day but c'est la vie. If all goes well, tomorrow is arms & shoulders (I'll be taking that easy!).
     
    #20 Sharv, Sep 25, 2012
    Last edited: Sep 25, 2012

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