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how to get toned

What Super Power Do You Covet?

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What Super Power Do You Covet?

When you prepare for your crime fighting mission, what power do you expect to most rely on? The sheer amount of cardio you have to do will happen regardless. We discussed this in a previous post. But once you swoop into action, would you prefer to save the day as quickly as possible, pick something up and move it to safety, or deduce how the crime took place, so you can stop it from happening again.

Basically, would you prefer to have super speed, super strength, or super deduction?

All three skills, speed, strength, and deduction, are needed in some capacity for any hero. The super power describes which of the three you prefer to rely on, enjoy using the most, or use by default without thinking. 

For example:

You come to a stone wall. How do you get to the other side? Do you smash a whole and walkthrough? Do you run up and jump it?  Do you look for a door? 

Your instinctive answer is your super power. The primary gift you should look to hone and keep sharp in case of use. The other two skills are viable options you should always mix in, just in case. It would suck to rely solely on finding a door, only to determine there isn't one.  

Your super power is the anchor to your training. It's what you should resort to when you fall of the wagon, when you're feeling unmotivated, and what you measure and test your progress against.  

We are going to analyze and break down what parameters will be most useful for your desired super power.

 

Super Strength

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You are going to pick up anything that isn't strapped down. You are the one your friends call when they are moving. Some asshat parked their car in your spot? Move it. Locked yourself out of the house? Knock down the door. You prefer to wield giant hammers, clubs, axes, or two handed swords, swing them once, and go home.

The first rule of strength training, is that you don't get strong by being strong. You don't improve strength by trying to lift 500lbs that won't budge. You don't improve strength by always and only lifting your max. You can realistically hit your max lift once. It takes so much of your energy to do so however, that you can't do it a second time.  

To improve your strength you want to work in full body compound movements. You want weights heavy enough to tax your whole body, while at the same time being light enough that after you have set them down, you can still pick them up again. And again. And again. And again. And again. And then maybe rest.

 

Super Speed

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Lines are the worst. Walking in a pack downtown makes you want to pull the skin off your face. You can totally run faster than rush hour traffic. The fastest way to get from point A to point B is a straight line, walls and private property be damned. Your jab is your favorite weapon and your wit is quick.

Speed is most effective in short bursts. The longer you spend doing something, the more energy it takes to keep doing it, the more you slow down. So when training for speed really you want to focus on two things. 1) Your top speed being higher. 2) The amount of time you can maintain your top speed, or close to it.

Plyometrics are your best friend.  Sprints, jumps, and other short bursts of power are going get you going faster, sooner. 

 

Super Deduction

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You know who the killer is within the first act of the episode. Crosswords and sudoku are your jam. Getting a question to something you don't know the answer to is both exciting AND an excuse to jump down a rabbit hole of research and thought experiments.  Your quick thinking prevents fights from escalating in the first place. Your understanding of physics and obsessive nature help you excel at things like climbing, darts, and billiards.

Just like strength and speed, your ability to deduce information from observing the world around you is physically trainable. To make it a superpower you have to be able to rely on it when you don't have time to think. When panic sets in and the chips are on the table, being able to tell whether someone is left or right handed doesn't matter unless you can apply the knowledge at full speed.

To train your deduction you want stimulate your mind in between spikes of adrenaline.  Playing memory in between a tabata, or tick tack toe in between heavy lifts can scratch this itch.

Which  of these powers do you feel calling to you? Which of the descriptions best describes how you see or would prefer to interact with the world? Lets discuss! If you want to learn more about how to exercise for character type, make sure to check out "How to Train for the Life You're Currently Living Part 2: Superhero Special Moves," on the products page!

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How to be Comfortable Being Uncomfortable

How to be Comfortable Being Uncomfortable

I love my couch. It is soft, and comfy, and just the right shape for both my dogs and my cat to snuggle over me like an extra blanket. After a long day of kicking ass with positivity, collapsing into my fort made of adorableness brings me a loving sense of euphoria. Every time I'm pretty sure I will never get back up, but that only feels so comfortable because I've spent the rest of my day being uncomfortable. It's the contrast of putting my body through stress and getting it sore that made the comfort so possible.

“But I don't want to be sore, or uncomfortable. It sounds painful, and I'd rather not be in pain.” I agree. I don't want to be in pain either. In fact our e-book “The Superhero Blueprint” discusses working to not have chronic pain and inflammation. However! I also say tough. Too bad. Tough noogies. Because while chronic pain can and should be thwarted, pain as a whole is going to happen whether you like it or not, and in some cases may be necessary.

In a mirrored universe where instead of kicking ass with positivity I spend most days on that same couch covered in the happiness that is puppies and kittens, it will feel decent for the first couple hours. After that my eating will be out of boredom rather than hunger. My food will taste bland and require oodles of extra salt, deep frying, and sugar in order to garner any kind of reaction. I will become tired from all my doing nothing. My butt will fall asleep, as will my hamstrings, and my ankles, which I won't notice until I try to stand up to use the bathroom. When I do stand up, or possibly even while I'm still stuck in the couch depending on how long it's been, I will notice that my joints are stiff, stuck, and fucking SORE.

No matter what you do, at some point, soreness will set in. That uncomfortable pain you want to avoid will exist either way. You can either put it to work or let it keep you from working. You can either use it to better yourself and improve your life, or it can take over your life and keep you from living.

What? Why? How?

Science SAID so that's how. Hahahaha puns.

Your body is a crazy, amazing, efficient machine. It is way smarter than you. It has to be in order to survive all the stupid shit we put it through. Your body has mechanisms built in that solely exist to fix stuff you fuck up. For example: there is a part of your sleep cycle that's sole job is to make sense of the things you sucked at today, and make you better at them. This is why you can end yo-yo practice frustrated and confused, and comeback the next day and kick ass at it. While you were unconscious your body found the missing links of yo yo stardom and put them together. 

Because of systems like this, your body readily adapts to the stimulus you give it.
This is known as the SAID (Specific Adaption to Imposed Demands) principle. Your body will adapt to its demands whether you choose to give it any or not. The way you sit, the way you stand, the way you walk, all play a part in how you body adapts. So if you spend most of your time in a fixed position at work, either standing or sitting, and spend most of your time in your favorite recliner at home, your body will adapt to those positions. When you move it will hurt because your body will have no idea how. The muscles in your legs, core, and back, that are supported by your chair, will have been turned off.

If you give your body demands to adapt to, it will. Putting demand on your body is by nature uncomfortable. In order for it to acknowledge and change from the provided stimulus, it must be more or different from what your body is used to. Part of the being uncomfortable will come in the form of being sore. So one way or another you will be uncomfortable and sore. The question is, is your body sore from adapting to your chair or is your body sore from adapting to exciting stimulus?

The choice is yours.