Rebel Ramblings – The Pursuit of Toughness #3

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So week 2 of Operation World’s Toughest Cox has concluded and just like every other week it had its share of ups and downs. I’ll get the downs out of the way first so that we can take a shovel, bury them in the yard, and put a tombstone up that reads “learned from and moved on.”

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My goals for the week were as such:

* Make yoga once this week
* Get in 1 trail run

* Run 15 miles total
* Get in a savage beach workout
* 4 weight training days
* minimum 30 total minutes on the “Lateral X”
* Increased vegetable intake
* Increased breakfast intake
* Reduced night time eating intake

Soakin' in the chakras!

Takin’ in the chakras!

Unfortunately extreme fatigue reared its insubordinate, grotesque head and I didn’t make yoga. That’s the only physical goal I didn’t make but it’s a pretty big one for me. I LOVE the centered focus you get but even more so I love the flexibility training that it forces me to do in ways that I don’t do normally. Stretching aside you work muscle groups, tendons, and ligaments in a way that you’re not going to get from a weight training session, circuit class, cardio, or anything else. That’s the reason why I love Zumba…

Pictured: Mid-Zumba Love

Pictured: Mid-Zumba Love. I’d like to think Denise feels similarly on the inside.

 

When else are you going to move your body in such a way that knocks all the cobwebs out, gets you limber, increases blood flow to areas normally lacking, works up a sweet sweat, AND you get to have fun? As my favorite Zumba Instructor of all time (and one of my all time favorite people in general) Jessica LaVenter states it’s exercise in disguise!

This is Jessica. Soak in the wisdom.

This is Jessica. Soak in the wisdom.

To be fair though… There are a lot Zumba routines that are DEFINITELY not disguised… The exercise punches you square in the face and laughs at you while you try to get up and keep the rhythm with the rest of the class.

Realistic depiction.

Realistic depiction.

As for the nutritional component I decreased my veggie intake from last week but it was still up from average. My breakfast intake was good and my late night eating was… ehhhh. Better than average but I definitely had a few more bowls of cereal than I should have.

And a couple of mini donuts, some chocolate pie, and some In N’ Out to boot… I’M ONLY HUMAN!!!

In reality a few unwise choices aren’t going to derail me in the slightest! They will, however, throw some sludge on my progress train tracks and with World’s Toughest Mudder merely a few months away there is no time to waste!

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Don’t get me wrong, this has nothing to do with perfectionism… I’d like to think that I pretty much represent the anti-perfectionist because I believe big time in yin yang philosophy. To know good you must know bad and vice versa. That is MAJORLY generalized of course… There are opposite ends of the spectrum on everything meaning one thing cannot exist without the other. Now I’m not talking to know of sadness and happiness but rather to knowing sadness and happiness and experiencing that they hold each other’s hand and guide each other through the dark spots. I apply that to my health, well being, and intense training. I accept it all and know that as long as I’m doing the best that I can then I am the best me that I can be at any given moment which you should NEVER beat yourself up over. It’s when you start short changing, cutting corners, negotiating your worth, and straight up giving up that you should start kicking your own ass and answering your own person judge, jury, and executioner.

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My shortcomings also have nothing to do with weight loss. I don’t look at those donuts, bowls of cereal (frosted flakes for you curious kittens out there), In N’ Out, chocolate pie, or anything else I forgot as hindering my weight. Between my training schedule and bringing the same energy as Richard Simmons on a speed binge to the boot camps I run I’m never short on caloric needs. Hell, I lost 4 pounds this week! I’m thankful beyond words that I have achieved activity as normalcy in my life thus allowing a little bit more food leeway for a food addict like myself. Does that mean I don’t feel shitty when I eat things I shouldn’t? Sure as hell doesn’t! Does that mean it doesn’t knock me on my ass like a hibernating bear when I eat enough to feed a family of 5? Heck no… Does it mean I don’t feel the side stitches that aren’t normally there when I go for a run to try to “filter out” the shit food I ate? Every time…

Another realistic depiction.

Another realistic depiction.

I think you get my point.

If you don’t then I’d like to break it down further… Any health goal you choose is going to take a lot of hard work. If your natural, everyday life brought you towards that goal then it wouldn’t really be a goal now would it? You wouldn’t need to put effort out thus negating any hardship & achievement in one fell swoop.  To alter your lifestyle in a way that goes against your urges is extremely difficult even when we realize those urges are not self serving in the slightest. Well I’ve conquered altering my lifestyle after more than a decade of trying to find the balance. You wouldn’t think normalcy would be so exhilarating but I might as well be Tonka with his head out the window I’m so stoked!

 

Exactly like that.

Exactly like that.

With this newly acquired balance I can now focus on the things that REALLY matter… My overall health and the effects that activity and nutrition have on my overall happiness. Not the scale, not how clothes fit, not what I look like… Happiness. I’ve learned that being active and eating well enough is vital to my happiness. When I’m feeling down there is usually a direct correlation to my activity levels/food intake. I know this about myself and adjust accordingly when I need to. I’m going to do this forever because of that and in no way is that overwhelming now but it sure as hell used to be!

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So that’s pretty much how I feel about that I guess… It really helps me to spew my thoughts on this little white screen but I also hope that somebody somewhere is reading this and recognizing their own inner-monologues, goals, and tested intentions and that brings strikes a motivated chord somewhere deep down to keep going even when the going gets tough.

For all that thought process I am stoked to say that I ran my 200th mile this week in about a 7th month time span. I’m pretty proud of that. Small cox for some but big Cox for me! My grip strength training improved drastically in just 1 weeks time and I’m sore in places I haven’t been in awhile which makes me feel all the more better weirdly enough… The beach workout was the gnarliest one yet as we covered 4 miles of coastal running, 200 sand digs, 240 Push-ups with barrel rolls, and 12 god-fucking-awful sand dune bear crawls. I’m pretty convinced that those sand dunes are a masochist’s wet dream. In the end, I’m giving my all and it is all that I can do and exactly what I need to do. I’m taking my body to the limit on my terms and it feels great.

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More importantly, I’m staying sane.

Well... saneISH.

Well… saneISH.

Until next time…

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– Rebel8

Witness Rebels Make History…

Truth

The 11th challenge of the Hulk/Rebel legacy is officially coming to a close today.

Every challenge, I put together a slideshow from start to finish, telling a rough guided story of the highs and lows, experiences and memories, smiles and sweat… Everything is chronicled here.

I encourage everyone to watch, even if you have never been a part of the Rebellion before… The Rebellion is a mentality, not a “members only” group. Everyone is a Rebel family member, and these slideshows showcase exactly how much fun taking care of yourself and working your heart and soul with people who want the same thing. We all have different exteriors, but the INTERIOR, your heart and soul, is where we all share the same spirit…

These slideshows showcase exactly how amazing that human spirit is and all the incredible things born of it.

AhhhhhOOOOOO!!!

– Rebel8

 

Get Your Rebel Shirt!

 

Hello Rebels!

As many of you know, I love to go against the grain and strain my creative muscle when it comes to art projects. Unfortunately, these art supplies are not cheap. Luckily, I think I’ve found a way to keep on spreading the good rebellion word and still get art supplies AND put food on the table!

I have calculated the cost of how much it would cost to order and ship blank shirts as well as getting one can of spray paint, and that total comes to $12. For $12 I can custom make you a Rebel shirt to make shirt your outfitted with the newest movement gear!

I have 4 colors I’m offering (Electric Green, Purple, Teal, and Orange to make sure the world sees ya!) with sizes going up to 3X. The shirt material is a 50/50 Poly-Cotton T-shirt blend perfect to workout in or rock for no reason. Be sure to include your shirt size and color request in the special instruction box available upon snagging your shirt!

So, I’ve provided an easy access PayPal system to make sure this runs super smooth and is easy for everybody!

Thank you for helping spread the Rebellion word! 

Click on “Buy” to get yourself a custom Rebellion T-shirt!

Click on “Donate” to help out various Rebellion art projects by donating a can of spray paint!

Official PayPal Seal

A sampling of over 100 shirts made :).

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Party Time! Rebe11ion style!

It’s time to party again!

Well, it’s that time of challenge season… Time to get down and celebrate! A LOT of hard work and life changing realizations have come about this challenge, and it’s that fact that is going to make this wrap party one of the best we’ve ever had.

Nobody lays out the details better than the main proprietor of the end of challenge wrap parties… Bobbi Rivera! So, here is all you need to know:

Hey Rebels!

Since our end of challenge party is due to be celebrated the weekend before Turkey day, I think this would be the perfect theme.

Please join us in a day of thanks for all the awesomeness that is Rebel and celebrate with your other family 🙂

The details:

  • Saturday November 17th
  • 2:00 p.m.
  • Location: Lomitas School House (Santa Rosa)
  • Cost: $20 per person

[For those curious, the cost goes into spot and equipment rentals AS WELL AS the turkey, desserts, and drinks, which can all cost quite a bit unless teamwork is called. I just wanted to not only debrief you as to where the money goes but to also thank Bobbi for making something that could be MUCH more expensive, cheaper :). – Josh]

I think it would be amazing if everyone could please bring the side dish that your family loves most. Whatever is most requested at your thanksgiving table that you’d like to share.

I will be handling the turkey, desserts and drinks along with the details and I think this will be yet another fabulous day with my Hulksters.

We’ll have a keg (Thanks again to Tom Walton!) and wine and some other options.

Please message/text me, respond on the Rebe11ion page, or e-mail me (Aliveinaphoto@gmail.com) if you will be attending, also if you could please let me know if you’re bringing a guest or two (not only welcome, but hoped for!) and what side dish you’ll be bringing so we don’t end up with nothing but sweet potatoes and green bean casserole!

I will need full payment and RSVP’s by the end of October at the absolute latest so if there are any problems just let me know. Otherwise, I am super stoked to get this going!

Thanks!

– Bobbi Rivera

Behold our LAST “Rebel X Hillbilly Ho-down Wrap Party”

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Check out the slideshow chronicling “Rebel X” (#10)

Lastly, Click HERE for FULL breakdown of the Trinity Challenge (#9)

I can’t wait to celebrate with you all! Awards, slideshow, good food, great people… it doesn’t get much better. AhhhOOOO!!!

– Rebel8

I Need 6 people I’ve never worked with before…

Hello eager reader! I’ve got some pretty big and exciting news! If you are interested in participating in a 6 week program starting November 1st that will not only provide amazing results for your body, but more importantly your mind then please read on!

Preface:

What I need are 6 motivated Anytime Fitness members who would like to take part in this program with me. You will take part in 2 workouts a week (each workout being 29 minutes) with myself as well as a virtual workout on Anytime Health. I will be teaching you the ins and outs of AnytimeHealth.com so you have the proper tools to keep track of nutrition, educate yourself on various topics from stretching to proper rest and recovery, and much more.

There is only one catch… I can’t ever have worked with you before. If I have ever done any sort of training with you, then you are disqualified from being able to participate (doesn’t mean I don’t have other classes and programs going on :)). The goal here is to be able to get feedback from a completely neutral standpoint with people unfamiliar with how I train. If that’s you OR you know somebody this would be really good for, pass the word on and/or let me know! E-mail AllLevelsTraining@gmail.com.

Basic Overview:

Meet & Greet: October 27th @ 12pm. This is where all 6 team members and myself meet up, get familiar with each other, and I provide you with an in person account of what you’re in for as I prep you for your first workout that starts 5 days from this point! 

Start Date: November 1st (Thursday @ 5:30pm)

End Date: December 15th (Saturday @ 12pm)

Workout times: Every Thursday @ 5:30pm and every Saturday @ 12pm for 29 minutes (virtual workout is something you can do on your own time OR you can plan to do it as a group… it will be your call!)

Cost: $180

Fun Details:

I will be creating a Facebook group for the 6 super stars who are able to sign on board. I will be providing shirts hand made by myself, as well as testing your fitness progressions in a fun and unique manner. The style of workout is going to be cardio and function based. I guess what I’m saying is that I’m going to keep your heart rate up, blood pumping, and body working the entire 29 minutes. These workouts are all about working smarter, not for duration. I didn’t go with “smarter, not harder” because you better believe you’re going to be working hard! That’s the beauty of it though… if it were easy, it wouldn’t be special!

We WILL be cutting through Thanksgiving and various holiday rituals, parties, and plans. This is a prime opportunity to rebel against all that with sweat and determination. I’ve got faith in you 😉

Once again, e-mail me at AllLevelsTraining@gmail.com and I will provide you with more details as they come! Let’s get it!

– Rebel8

PS if you don’t know anything about me or why I do what I do, please look watch this video that sums it up nicely:

The 11th Hour!

The 11th Hour

This workout plan is designed to be done in an adequate space with adequate equipment. Whether that be a garage with space or your gyms local aerobic room when it’s not being used, this is NOT something that can be done at home but IS something you can use to educate yourself while getting a REALLY good workout (or, just get a really good workout if you’re familiar with these exercises).

The breakdown:

The 11th hour consists of 11 exercises put into an order that will completely work the entirety of your body while testing aerobic endurance, strength, conditioning, and the ability to keep going when you’ve convinced yourself you can’t. This format is essentially my Tough Mudder circuit class format, only this workout design doesn’t change week to week the way my class does. 

You will do each exercise for 30 total seconds (no less) back-to-back-to-back until you’ve completed 5 rounds. The word “break” is not in this workouts vocabulary. You go STRAIGHT THROUGH 6 TIMES. Just wanted to make that very clear!

The Setup:

Listed below are the exercises in the order that you are going to do them, with the tools needed in parenthesis. Be sure to set all the stations up before beginning the circuit. If you have the tools to do MOST of the exercises, but not all, then do the closest equivalent. Don’t have equalizers to do push-ups? Do regular push-ups. Don’t have 2 BOSU’s to do squats on? Use air discs, balance boards, half foam rollers, or just the floor if in a crunch!

You can start ANYWHERE in the circuit you wish, as long as you complete the rounds entirely. You can click on the title of each exercise to get a video link on what the exercise is so you’re not left in the dark.

  1. Standing BOSU Shoulder Press (BOSU & 5lb, 8lb, or 10lb dumbbells)
  2. Equalizer Chin-Ups (2 Lebert Equalizers)
  3. Burpees (Floor Space)
  4. BOSU Mountain Climbers (BOSU)
  5. Wall-Sit with Bicep Curl (Wall Space & Dumbbells ranging from 5-20 lbs)
  6. Alternating Reverse Lunges w/ Barbell (Barbell weight of your choice… 8 lbs and beyond!)
  7. Double BOSU Squat w/ Medicine Ball Extension (2 BOSUs and a medicine ball weight of your choice)
  8. Hands Up Bicycles (Mat & 2-8 lb dumbbells if you want an added challenge)
  9. Exercise Ball Russian Twists w/ Dumbbell (Exercise ball & 5-10 lb dumbbell)
  10. Dynamic Crunch w/ Medicine Ball (Mat & Medicine Ball of your choice)
  11. Lebert Equalizer Push-ups [Only follow first half of the video!] (2 Lebert Equalizers)

So a reminder… 30 seconds per exercise, 6 rounds straight through, no breaks!

Be safe and have fun!

– Rebel8

The 500 Club!

The 500 Club

The 500 club is a straight to the point, no nonsense style core workout that will work every single inch of your most important muscle groupings. From your lower back and hip flexors to your abdomen and beyond, this workout is not only effective, but VERY adjustable! Able to complete one round in a breeze? Do 2! Want an added boost to the workout? Incorporate dumbbells and BOSUs!

The actual workout itself consists of doing the following exercises and allotted repetitions all in a row (That’s one round):

  • Forearm Plank Knee Drivers (50 Reps)
  • Crunches (50 Reps)
  • Straight Arm Plank Position Toe Tappers (50 Reps)
  • Flutter Kicks (100 kicks)
  • Straight Arm V-Sit Twists (50 Reps)
  • Jumping Jacks (50 Reps)
  • Straight Arm Plank Position Hand Tappers (50 Reps)
  • Crunches (50 Reps)
  • Arms Extended Prone Cobras (50 Reps)

If you tally the rep counts, you’ll see that’s where the name derives… 500 repetitions! If able, proudly become a member of the Grand club! The 1,500 club and beyond! This workout can be done at home or at the gym!

To help you out, I’ve provided brief videos of each exercise being done so you aren’t left in the dark:

-Rebel8

Hanky-Plank Challenge!

The Hanky-Plank challenge!

First and foremost, “Hanky-Plank” means nothing. It rhymes and it’s catchy, so you’ll remember it… Now that you’ve uncovered my hidden agenda there it’s time to get down to brass tacks! (PS I am certain it’s not “tax” if that’s what you’re thinking right now. Trust me, I am well versed in my haberdashery skills).

The challenge is simple; Every OTHER day, hold a 5 minutes accumulated plank. It doesn’t have to be 5 minutes in a row, but does need to total 5 minutes. Once you are able to 5 minutes in a row, then it’s simple… Add another minute! If you get to the point where you can hold a 5 minute plank continuously, then go to 6. Once you can do 6, then go to 7… Trust me, the numbers won’t be climbing at a rate you won’t be able to keep up with :).

To start, watch this video as a guide on how to implement the perfect plank and keep it perfect:

The goal; To strengthen your core to the max! Out of all the exercises in existence, I believe the plank is the most structurally sound when done right. It reinforces your body from the inside out, incorporating your entire body in learning how to work together as a whole. Having a strong plank will not only better the quality and effectiveness of your workouts, but also your life! It is functionality training at it’s finest when done right, and that’s what I’m here for… To make sure it’s done right ;). By the end of this thing, I hope to have created some plank MONSTERS!

The prize; You will get a special “Plank Specialist” t-shirt provided and designed by myself, customized to YOU, as well as a highlighted spot on the shovel when it comes time to sign it! You have earned both simple-yet-prestigious prizes if you are able to take the top plank spot!

The rules:

1) The winner will be decided during the end of challenge fit test once both teams have done said test. DURING the challenge however, I strongly encourage doing the plank in the “knees down” position if it is too much for your lower back. Hurting yourself is not worth it when the goal is to better yourself.

2) Follow the instructions of the video carefully. Be AWARE of what every part of your body is doing and listen to your body if it says it’s time to take a break. There’s a difference between sharp lower back pain and a difficult exercise. As human beings, we have an instinct that tells us when something is harming us as opposed to when something is just hard. Listen to that instinct. Along the same line,

3) If your lower back starts to hurt, then rest until you are able to perform the exercise WITHOUT your lower back taking all the pain. That means your body isn’t strong enough to go any longer, but it doesn’t mean you’re not working it effectively. The important thing here is a healthy body, not “as long as possible at all costs.”

4) We are going on the honor system here, since in the end the fit test will show the practice!

I promise that if you follow these guidelines your plank time will not only go through the roof, but your body will feel like brand new! It we will be hard work, but that’s what makes it worth it. The benefits FAAAAAAAR outweigh the energy output used in tackling this challenge. You will have a reinforced structural integrity that you will be able to reap the benefits from well past your workouts and into your every day life.

Game on ;).

– Rebel8

1st Rebe11ion Boot Camp… Over.

Watch the video Rebels! A message from me to you :).

Click HERE to read up on “The Shovel!”

Click HERE to read up, watch, and listen to the new Rebe11ion team song!

– Rebel8