thisisnotajournal: (PT)
Set a PR for pullups today - six. My twin sister has my fat ass beat by just two. The creatine is doing me good.

Still working my way through the runs and still doing the core work. The ARC has these big old fifteen-pound medicine balls that make Mason twists hurt like a bitch. I think I might be at a slight caloric surplus, but - I dunno, it's a problem but it's not a Problem. I'd track calories if it didn't take so much fucking time. I think I'll just cut grapes out of weekday lunches and cut back from a cup of brown rice at dinner to 1/4th a cup.

GameStop took my PS4 and games (TLoUR, Wolfenstein: TNO, and Alien: Isolation) for $185. Not as much as I could have gotten off Craigslist, but at least they're off my hands now, and $185 can buy a lot of food and supps.

Anyway. That's all I got.
thisisnotajournal: (parts of me are pretty awesome)
MY KNEE IS BACK TO 100%.

Sorry for the capslock, but dude, if you were stuck on that fucking thing for three months, you'd be every bit as jubilant as I am right now. I'm back running on it, but not really - it's an interval-based eight-week program my physical therapist gave me. Run for X minutes, walk for Y minutes, repeat for Z sets. After that program's done I'll try for a mile three times a week, then move on to a mile and a half, then two miles, then two and a half, three - you get the picture. My pace is excellent - if I had to guess, I'd say I could keep around 6-minute-mile pace for the first couple of sets, maybe slowing to a 7- or 8-minute mile for the last few.

In other news - I saw the recruiting page for MARSOC and noticed tryouts are not restricted to 03XX MOSes. I might be putting the cart before the horse, but if I do get into the Corps, they say if you can run a 300+ PFT you can take basically anything it dishes out. I'd just need to work on my swimming some - get comfortable in the water and all that.
thisisnotajournal: (PT)
MY CREATINE MONOHYDRATE CAME IN TODAY.

I probably shouldn't be as hyped as I am about it, because realistically it's only going to help me with lifts and a little bit with aerobics (in the sense it'll up my lower body strength), but dude, I am ready to freaking crush these lifts after today. I'm already seeing big improvements with pullups and dips - hopefully I can transition to bodyweights with them soon.

The knee is still fucked. I'm foam rolling twice a day, focusing on hip flexors, adduction, abduction, everything the PT says - I even got a brace. I don't even know, man. It's been months and it feels like it's plateauing.

Whatever. All I can do is give it time, right? Fuckin' joints, man.
thisisnotajournal: (PT)
Boxing conditioning today:

-Three laps around Hutchison field
-A two-set circuit of:
  • A 50-yard suicide
  • 15 burpees
  • 20 crunches
  • 10 pushups
  • A 50-yard suicide
-Three two-minute circuits of:
  • 30 seconds of mountain climbers
  • 30 seconds of squats
  • 30 seconds of crunches
  • 30 seconds of partner leg hops
-One cooldown lap around Hutchison

Fuckin' boring, man. But at least I got to talk to the coach about getting on the fight team.

(Watch this space for news re: me getting chances to get the shit beaten out of me.)

Now I'm off to the gym to do my real PT for the day.
thisisnotajournal: (screw canon)
So MGS 5: The Phantom Pain just isn't doing it for me. Went into GameStop today to trade it in (along with Ground Zeroes, Arkham Knight, and some TellTale games) for some walkaround money.

What did I ultimately think of it? I don't know - I mean, I guess it'd end up being pretty fun if you had the spare time to dedicate to it as well as the inclination to take the initiative in varying the gameplay, but I don't. Part of it has to do with the plot. To me, Kojima has always seemed like he’s trying to pass judgment on things he’s not really qualified to pass judgment on - stuff like war, soldiering, and the ethics thereof - and maybe this is just a byproduct of my upbringing in the American style of storytelling, but some of the stuff that he seems to think is profound has always seemed long-winded and melodramatic to me.

Aaaaand then there's how he treats his female characters.

(Yeah, this is about Quiet again. Am I going to eat my words? Yeah, a little bit.)

I don't know really what to say except that I find it frustrating that it seems that Kojima decided that overtly sexualizing Quiet was somehow vital to the themes of the game. He can spout all that "BUT SHE NEEDS TO BREATHE THROUGH HER SKIN" stuff all he wants, it doesn't make it any less of a gigantic leap of logic for me. Call me cynical, but it feels more like her aesthetic came about as a result of a directive saying something to the effect of "BY GOD WE'LL HAVE A HALF-NAKED WOMAN IN THIS GAME OR DIE TRYING" than as a result of any serious brainstorming regarding the themes of the game.

I don't think Kojima's a misogynist, I just think he doesn't know any better and mistakes "shock value" for "artistic merit". It’s like getting mad at your dog for licking his balls, or your demented grandpa for forgetting it’s uncouth to drop racial slurs in polite company. You really wish he’d stop, but nothing you do gets through to him, and at the end of the day, as much as you wish it were otherwise, that’s just who he is and what he does.



The knee's a lot better. I've been working on hip adduction/abduction exercises, along with some IT band stuff on the foam roller, and it's gotten to the point where I can barely feel it on my bike anymore. Hopefully by mid-October I'll be able to get back to the squat rack and start loading up on plates, but I'm in no rush to re-injure it. Fortunately, I have blessings to take it slow at boxing conditioning tomorrow.

Went on a little bit of a shopping spree on Optimum Nutrition, too - snagged their Platinum casein and whey lines, along with some fish oil and 2,000 grams of creatine. It's a regular Barry Bonds Starter Kit.

I'm kind of frustrated that I seem to have plateaued at 180 pounds, but I can at least take comfort in the fact that my bodyfat is down to around - I don't know, 17%? 18%? Somewhere in there? Whereas back in February I was at 200 pounds and close to 30% BF. I think part of the reason for the plateau is because I stopped logging stuff in MyFitnessPal - which I will persist in saying I was entirely justified in doing, because there were annoyingly persistent bugs that switched around calories and macronutrients to the extent that the whole exercise was rendered moot. They say that's all fixed now with some new updates.

We'll see, MFP. We'll see.
thisisnotajournal: (Default)
Leave it to the Aussies to know how to put a sun-bleached hellscape on camera, am I right?

I think Tom Hardy did alright. At least I could understand him in this movie.
thisisnotajournal: (headdesk)
I probably shouldn't let Tom Hardy's complete lack of trigger and muzzle discipline bother me as much as it does.

But Jesus Christ he flags so many people he could be in front of the UN building. If I were Furiosa I'd break that thing off in his ass after the third time. Or at least pull over long enough to beat some sense into him.

I'm just waiting for Marvin to get shot in the face.
thisisnotajournal: (not all there myself)
So I picked up my copy of The Phantom Pain on Tuesday, and I'm about 7% of the way through, if the in-game completion meter is to be believed. I think that's good enough for a first impressions post.

Keep in mind that I try to make a habit of not talking about stuff I know nothing about, so if I don't cover an aspect of the game your best friend's uncle's aunt twice removed talked about in the way you wanted, that's probably why.



Should I start with the premise? I feel like I should start with the premise.

TL;DR, you play as Snake, AKA Big Boss, AKA Jack (it's canon). You're basically to soldiering what Muhammad Ali is to boxing, and you're making a go of the private sector after a stint in the Green Berets in the 60s left a bad taste in your mouth (see Metal Gear Solid 3: Snake Eater). After that, you fucked around in South America and the Caribbean for a while, building your private army (see Metal Gear Solid: Peace Walker and Metal Gear Solid: Ground Zeros) until New Shit Came To Light, you got coma'd for nine years, and your private army was basically destroyed.

But hey, it's 1984 and the Ruskies are in Afghanistan! LET'S FULTON ALL THEIR SHIT.

TPP is primarily a stealth action game, but it can be a quite fun third-person shooter with the right loadout, and there are echoes of Red Dead Redemption whenever you're on horseback. People (rightly) give MGS a lot of shit for its convoluted plots and backstory, but it's honestly not so bad in this one if you go into it with at least a general understanding of the events that transpired during and between Snake Eater, Peace Walker, and Ground Zeros. As per usual for the series, it alternates between hyper-realistic tactical action and sequences with superpowered antagonists that feel like a postmodern take on Japanese mysticism, with some goofy shit sprinkled around therein (keep a weather eye out and you can pick up a cassette that plays the sounds of a soldier shitting his brains out, preventing guards from opening the door when you're hiding in a portashitter). You split your time between Afghanistan, Africa, and a mid-ocean platform your PMC has constructed called Mother Base.



What I like:

- the controls are, for once, pretty damn great. You can transition between shooting and sneaking quite easily, and you'll quickly pick up what you need to know - unless this is your first video game, or you're the kind of tosser who likes to pretend it's their first video game.
- the missions are open-ended. Want to eliminate a Spetsnaz commander and his staff by sending a Carl Gustav through their window? You can do that. Want to get your secret squirrel on and infiltrate the hamlet he's hiding in before putting a tranq round in his ass and Fultoning him away to work for you? You can do that, too.
- the open world works excellently for stealth. Even if I usually default to the most efficient path, I love the feeling I get putting in legwork reconing a site before I go in.




What I hate:

- the game pretending I'll do anything but "auto-assign" and "accept all" when it comes to Mother Base staff and accepting rewards. Ain't nobody got time for that.
- weapons are not customizable. You cannot pick and choose sights, stocks, muzzle accessories, or what-have-you - instead they are handed to you as an ensemble. I've been told you can recruit a gunsmith later on in the game that changes this.
- at times, it becomes a pain having to open your iDroid to be able to competently navigate the game world and plan your next move.



Wild card:

People who've played a Metal Gear Solid game before this will not be surprised by the appearance of Quiet, and I think many of the Professionally Offended People out there haven't.

For those not in the know, Quiet is a recruitable friendly NPC you can pair up with on missions. She's also a mute sniper whose default outfit amounts to a black bikini and some torn pantyhose. The in-game justification given is that she was originally dressed in normal fatigues - which you can see when she tries to kill Big Boss in the hospital - but after she was heavily wounded, she became a guinea pig for some kind of bio-wizardry team that gave her the power to turn invisible and defy gravity, with the tradeoff that she'd unleash a deadly parasitic plague if she ever spoke. Ergo, Quiet.

Somehow this results in her needing to breathe through her skin. Ergo, bikini and pantyhose.

I won't be the type of fanboy who pretends like there's nothing wrong with it - for one, it's hard for me to buy cutaneous gas exchange in a human to begin with, and for two, I fail to see why she can't just breathe through her nose - but the point is you should not be surprised. Hideo Kojima has built a reputation for including these kinds of eccentricities in his works. EVA, a friendly NPC in MGS 3, had more than her fair share of tit shots. MGS 4 was famous for how its skintight sneaking suits led to gratuitous amounts of man-ass in certain scenes. Basically all of the Snakes have at least one mandatory shirtless scene in every MGS, and in MGS 2, Raiden, the protagonist, actually has a sequence where he has to sprint buck-naked through enemy territory.

If it bothers you that much, just don't buy it. Let the free market take its course.



Overall, I like what I've played so far. It won't be everyone's cup of tea, but I'd recommend at least renting it.

More on this after I've finished the story mode.
thisisnotajournal: (PT)
I don't know whether this is a phenomenon exclusive to college gyms, but whenever I see two skinny-ass Asian guys make entry together, I can guarantee that they're going to have no plan at all.

Well, first they're going to lounge around and fuck around with their phones and the gym TV for a bit. Then they're going to go through a routine that looks like it was developed by sticking a list of exercises around a Jackson Pollock painting and letting the paint drip onto it. Just tonight I saw two guys go from stationary bike to dumbbell press to Smith bench (lol Smith machines) within the space of like, five minutes.

Like, can I get this off my chest? I am super-accepting when it comes to forms of PT. Walking, ellipticals, even CrossFit - anything is better than nothing. It's the effort that counts here. It just so happens that sometimes that effort could be better spent, because some ways happen to be a whole lot more efficient at getting you in shape (or are safer) than others. Making a plan, recording results, being consistent - that's what'll get you results. If you go in expecting to pick up gains through osmosis through some random-ass routine you've cobbled together, you're Gonna Have A Bad Time.

Can I give a shoutout to the dudes who came up with the canned fruit cocktail, btw? Mmm simple carbohydrates in a can. Great for when you just smoked yourself.
thisisnotajournal: (PT)
Here.

I know, I know, it's not as solid as the last time around, but the way I see it, the best means of progression would be to bulletproof my 3-mile first, then go for a regular solid 30 minutes, then start adding incline, then start adding speed through sprints. The run the other day was a damn good gut check, but I can't very well do weights afterwards if the run completely smokes me, now can I?

We'll see how it all works out on Monday morning.
thisisnotajournal: (survive)
LA's going to be at Great American Ballpark today at 1235 ET. Greinke's starting. They might sweep the series.

And you know what I'll be doing then? Organic chemistry shit.

Maybe if I'm lucky I can catch the seventh inning onward.
thisisnotajournal: (PT)
Damn but it felt good to lift heavy shit again.

The weights might not've been as high as I wanted them to be, but for the first time in a long time, I finished it all in under an hour.

It's probably not going to be enough to make me sore tomorrow, but at least I've got the ball rolling on this stuff again.
thisisnotajournal: (PT)
I did it.

It took me months, gave me Christ knows how many blisters, took damn near everything I had mentally, but I did it. You're looking at 30 minutes at an 8 min/mile pace followed by a five minute cooldown.

I'm not proud of it - pride leads to complacency, and complacency leads to death. That might sound melodramatic, but I believe it.

Still-

There's a Theodore Roosevelt speech I'm fond of at times like these. The Navy likes it so much they print an excerpt from it at the end of Reef Points, the handbook given to incoming midshipmen. It's called "Citizenship in a Republic", and its most famous excerpt is this:

"It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat."

Weights are next.
thisisnotajournal: (PT)
So I caved - which is to say, I'm working meat back into my diet after trying to go vegetarian to save money. I think my crashing and burning the other night might've been a combination of hypoglycemia and anemia - I'm loading up on iron just to be on the safe side.

We'll see how it works out tomorrow.
thisisnotajournal: (PT)
Couldn't even get started on the weights. All I have to show for it is a bloody sock (thanks to a blister that should be healed by now).

It's fucking depressing, is what it is. Now I have to load up on brown rice and pinto beans and hope it'll work out better tomorrow.
thisisnotajournal: (PT)
No treadmill picture tonight. Went hypoglycemic and crashed hard 14 minutes in. Couldn't even do 4 more minutes at a steady 8 minute mile.

I'll try 30 minutes at 8 min/mile tomorrow - no sprints. For now, I'll just do weights and try to put what a horrendous fuckup tonight was out of my mind.
thisisnotajournal: (PT)
Tonight

I wanted to go for 30, but it just didn't pan out. I'll try again tomorrow morning.
thisisnotajournal: (Default)
Nothing to put here quite yet. There'll be something. Eventually.

Who knows, I might write something. It might not even be fic. I am thinking...historical fiction.

Don't hold me to it, though.
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