I want to do the Box Splits!

I want to do the Box Splits!

I want to be able to the box splits!  I’ve always thought it would be a cool “party trick” to be able to do.  Not to mention how useful it would be for martial arts for me to be able to kick that high!  Keep in mind that I’m only 5’7 – maybe 5’8 on a good day!  For me to deliver a head kick to an opponent, it is all likely that any opponent will be taller than me!  I can already kick above my own head height to be honest.  But I want to be able to kick higher!  I want to be able to do the splits!

box splits

What am I going to do about it?

I’ve realised that groin and hip flexibility isn’t going to improve by itself for me!  I already have my dynamic warm up routine (SEE IT HERE) that I do daily.  And this helps keep me nimble and mobile and agile.  And it does help maintain a level of flexibility.  But for me to improve my flexibility to the extent of being able to do the splits, I am going to have to start incorporating some specific flexibility training.

I was kind of hoping the flexibility would come by itself, simply through the act of practising lots of high kicks on the bag.  But no such luck, I’m afraid!

box splits

Ballet?

As it happened, a ballet instructor down the gym happened to see me training on the bag, and asked if I wanted to be able to improve my flexibility and do the box splits.  My answer, was absolutely!

She had me go down into a Frog Stretch, which I am all too familiar with.  It’s a pretty standard stretch for the groin and adductors and hips.  But this little innocent looking ballet instructor has an evil side!  She had me push my feet against the wall behind me, so that I was locked in position. And she began pushing down on my lower back to open up my groin even more!  Wow, it hurt!  As the minutes passed, I eased deeper and deeper into the stretch, until I was maxed out at my flexibility limit.  She simply said “good, now hold it”.

box splits

Another 10 minutes later of almost aggressively holding the stretch and trying to push as deep as I could go, I was actually sweating and breathing heavily!  It was relief when the 10 minutes was up, and she said I could stop!

I slowly and carefully got off the floor, and as I walked across the gym, I felt like I had just gotten off a horse!  She called me back over.  For a moment I was terrified that she would make me do it again.  Luckily, she didn’t, but said to do the same thing again tomorrow. And the next day.  And the next day.  If I keep doing it daily, this is what is going to get me doing the box splits and kicking higher!  Then to prove her point, she dropped into the splits with ease and gave me a look that said “see!”

box splits

My Box Splits Plan

So this is where I’m at now. I’m continuing to do my daily mobility routine.  I’m continuing to practice Muay Thai kicks on the bag as often as I can (though I am limited still because of my injured knee).  But now at the end of every training session, I plan to spend approximately 10 minutes of suffering as I go into a deep (almost aggressive) frog stretch.

Note, that I have to do the stretch at the END of the workout, because it feels so physically draining that I literally couldn’t do anything else in the gym after!

Let’s see how this goes! Hopefully it won’t be long before I’m writing a follow up post with loads of pictures of me showing off how flexible I am!  To be continued!

Operation “Don’t Get Fat Over Xmas!” – Get Dan Diced / Reverse Dieting Progress Update

Operation “Don’t Get Fat Over Xmas!”

 – Get Dan Diced / Reverse Dieting Progress Update

As it stands, it’s been about 8 weeks now since Operation Get Dan Diced came to an end.  And as you know, I have been “reverse dieting”. This is to gradually get my metabolism, food intake, and activity levels back to “normal”.  Of course, Christmas time has brought with it a few extra “challenges” as expected!  But don’t worry, I’ve been following my own advice! The advice that me and Jake Weekes gave in our Brain Gainz Christmas series!

Operation Dont Get Fat Over Xmas

Reverse Dieting

Just to remind you, “reverse dieting” is the process of gradually increasing calorie intake, and / or reducing exercise levels.  The idea is to make small changes week after week, to give the body’s metabolism time to adjust.  This is to minimise unwanted fat gain. This would occur if I were to simply immediately up the calories and reduce the training.   I.e. how often do you see people diet down to a target body weight. Only to “rebound” hard and pile the weight back on after!

Operation Dont Get Fat Over Xmas
Operation Dont Get Fat Over Xmas

Christmas

Keep body fat in check over Christmas involved a little bit of planning, but nothing too outrageous. I spent the week over Christmas with family and relatives.  It involved a lot of travelling.  And there was lots of delicious food around and lots of temptation!  But it wasn’t too difficult.

Operation Dont Get Fat Over Xmas

As per the advice from the Brain Gainz videos, I kept my step count consistent. Though it involved some early morning and / or late evening walks.  I continued to fit my workouts in. This was through sneaking off during quiet times in the day. Because I was travelling, I would get gym day passes.

Operation Dont Get Fat Over Xmas

But probably most importantly, I ate mindfully.  I roughly tracked my food using MyFitnessPal. Portion sizes were just guessed, and I filled up mostly on vegetables and protein (lots of sprouts and turkey!).  I opted for mainly lower calorie options like sugar-free jelly for dessert.  

Operation Dont Get Fat Over Xmas

But eating like this did allow me to “save” calories for things I really wanted. Like pigs in blankets. And for the fact that on Christmas Day, I ate like 2 of these big Lindt chocolate bears myself!

Operation Dont Get Fat Over Xmas

My Stats

My body weight right now – now that the Christmas water retention and bloat has gone – is 74kg.

Daily calorie intake is on average around 1,800 calories.  But to be honest, I haven’t been very strict on sticking to this lately. So some days are higher and some days are lower.  But it balances out to average about 1,800 cals a day.

My training doesn’t really have a strict schedule right now. But I do try and do some kind of exercise most days.  Some days this is really easy stuff, like just my knee rehab exercises and some stretching.  And other days I’ll do some hard bag work (to the best of my ability, since I have to still be very careful about moving around on my bad knee).  Weight training has kind of come to a halt over the last few weeks.  I’m just having more fun right now. I am doing other forms of exercise rather than lifting weights. And I’m still getting a good sweat going and still burning calories!

My step count is about 15,000 steps most days, which is what it was before I started getting “diced”.

Brain Gainz Christmas Advent Calendar Day 7

BRAIN GAINZ Christmas Advent Calendar Day 7

Simple advice here, guys!

When Frank the Tank is trying to get you to have another 12 beers, be smart and just say “no”.

Whether its booze, cake, or anything else, say “no” when you’ve had enough!

See the video!

 

Myself and Jake Weekes of Leaner Stronger are bringing you a special Christmas series of Brain Gainz over the Christmas period.

For each day leading up to Christmas Day, we will be bringing you tips on how to have a great Christmas and still stay lean, fit and healthy!

Brain Gainz Xmas Day 7

And if you haven’t done so already, be sure to download my ebook:

A Fun Christmas WITHOUT the Weight Gain!

Download your FREE copy of my ebook!

Brain Gainz Christmas Advent Calendar Day 6

BRAIN GAINZ Christmas Advent Calendar Day 6

It has all been very negative so far, but we DO want you to still enjoy Xmas and have fun!
And yes you can, and without sacrificing your health and fitness.
See the video!

 

Myself and Jake Weekes of Leaner Stronger are bringing you a special Christmas series of Brain Gainz over the Christmas period.

For each day leading up to Christmas Day, we will be bringing you tips on how to have a great Christmas and still stay lean, fit and healthy!

Brain Gainz Xmas Day 6

And if you haven’t done so already, be sure to download my ebook:

A Fun Christmas WITHOUT the Weight Gain!

Download your FREE copy of my ebook!

Brain Gainz Christmas Advent Calendar Day 5

BRAIN GAINZ Christmas Advent Calendar Day 5

OK guys, this one is short and sweet and very much to the point!
And of course as always, me and Jake Weekes maintain our professionalism at all times
See the video!

 

Myself and Jake Weekes of Leaner Stronger are bringing you a special Christmas series of Brain Gainz over the Christmas period.

For each day leading up to Christmas Day, we will be bringing you tips on how to have a great Christmas and still stay lean, fit and healthy!

Brain Gainz Xmas Day 5

And if you haven’t done so already, be sure to download my ebook:

A Fun Christmas WITHOUT the Weight Gain!

Download your FREE copy of my ebook!

Time Management, Planning, and Weekly Schedule

Time Management, Planning, and Weekly Schedule

“I have no time to exercise, and no time to eat healthily”

This is the excuse I hear so many times from people who think they just can’t fit any exercise or healthy eating into their busy schedule.
Let me show you how in most cases, even for the busiest of people, this is NOT true!  There are “hidden” time slots during the day that you might not realise at first glance!
So, with a little bit of planning and organisation, you CAN fit exercise and healthy eating into your busy life after all!
See the video!
time management
time management

Brain Gainz Xmas Advent Calendar Day 4

BRAIN GAINZ Christmas Advent Calendar Day 4

It’s OK to take some time off from training.
But think twice before taking the whole of December off!
See the video!

 

Myself and Jake Weekes of Leaner Stronger are bringing you a special Christmas series of Brain Gainz over the Christmas period.

For each day leading up to Christmas Day, we will be bringing you tips on how to have a great Christmas and still stay lean, fit and healthy!

Brain Gainz Xmas Day 4

And if you haven’t done so already, be sure to download my ebook:

A Fun Christmas WITHOUT the Weight Gain!

Download your FREE copy of my ebook!

 

Brain Gainz Christmas Advent Calendar Day 3

BRAIN GAINZ Christmas Advent Calendar Day 3

We’ve already talked about how many extra calories will be eaten over Christmas.

But what about the huge drop in exercise?

See the video!

 

Myself and Jake Weekes of Leaner Stronger are bringing you a special Christmas series of Brain Gainz over the Christmas period.

For each day leading up to Christmas Day, we will be bringing you tips on how to have a great Christmas and still stay lean, fit and healthy!

Brain Gainz Xmas Day 3

And if you haven’t done so already, be sure to download my ebook:

A Fun Christmas WITHOUT the Weight Gain!

Download your FREE copy of my ebook!

 

Brain Gainz Xmas Advent Calendar Day 2

BRAIN GAINZ Christmas Advent Calendar Day 2

Brain Gain Xmas Day 2: Do you dare to know how many calorie the average person will eat in their Christmas meal? Or even scarier, how many calories on average will be eat in total on Christmas Day?

 

Myself and Jake Weekes of Leaner Stronger are bringing you a special Christmas series of Brain Gainz over the Christmas period.

For each day leading up to Christmas Day, we will be bringing you tips on how to have a great Christmas and still stay lean, fit and healthy!

Brain Gainz Xmas Day 2

And if you haven’t done so already, be sure to download my ebook:

A Fun Christmas WITHOUT the Weight Gain!

Download your FREE copy of my ebook!

 

Brain Gainz Xmas Advent Calendar Day 1

BRAIN GAINZ Christmas Advent Calendar Day 1

Brain Gain Xmas Day 1: Be wary of all those extra calories, and reduced exercise levels!

 

Myself and Jake Weekes of Leaner Stronger are bringing you a special Christmas series of Brain Gainz over the Christmas period.

For each day leading up to Christmas Day, we will be bringing you tips on how to have a great Christmas and still stay lean, fit and healthy!

Brain Gainz Xmas Day 1

And if you haven’t done so already, be sure to download my ebook:

A Fun Christmas WITHOUT the Weight Gain!

Download your FREE copy of my ebook!