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jaja last won the day on March 9 2023

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About jaja

  • Birthday 10/30/1990

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  1. Thank you for your comment, @apat7. I didn't get notified until you mentioned me directly, so I'm only reading it now. 100%. Not only this, I must add that tight muscles can overtime affect the prostate itself and make it swollen and tender (as it seems to be my case). I'm saying this because during my first urology visit I had actual inflammation there. Later on, a proctologist didn't found a relevant condition, despite the fact I was experiencing relapses from time to time. And now…I'm at it again. Yes, brief update. It's been two days of mild discomfort at night, with relief after doing breath work and stretches like child poses. Most likely the cause right now is stress (lot is going on in my life), paired with more time spent sitting and high caffeine intake. Incidentally, last week my therapist said I was doing great and could skip our weekly treatment. I informed her of my symptoms and she said to stand by and watch if I can manage it by myself, she'll assess me in 3-4 weeks. Her words were: “you have to learn to manage stress, because it's part of life”.
  2. New year, new program. This time, after a cycle where I tested my 1RM in various lifts, Fred decided to focus on some sticking points I have. Stretching-wise, my main goal is the same as always: opening-up the hips. Monday Wall HF Stretch Tailor pose Calf stretch Baby whale for chest Baby whale for hips QL stretch Tuesday Warm-up (2 rounds) Ankle circles: 10 reps Inside/outside rocks: 20 reps Goblet squats: 8x12kg RDL: 1x6x60kg + 1x6x80kg + 1x6x100kg + 1x5x120kg + 1x4x125kg Chin ups: 1x3x15kg + 1x3x15kg + 1x3x15kg + 1x3x15kg + 1x3x15kg + 1x3x15kg + 1x3x15kg + 1x3x15kg + 1x1x15kg Shoulder Rehab Circuit: 3 series Wednesday Warm-up (2 rounds) Ankle circles: 10 reps Inside/outside rocks: 20 reps Goblet squats: 8x12kg Front Squat: 1x5x20kg + 1x5x40kg + 1x5x50kg + 1x5x55kg + 1x5x60kg Floor Press: 1x6x40kg + 1x6x50kg + 1x6x60kg + 1x6x62,5kg + 1x6x65kg Bent over barbell row: 1x8x40kg + 1x8x45kg + 1x8x50kg + 1x8x55kg First time with the front-squat ever. I find it difficult to keep the proper position with the torso. Honestly I can't imaging attempting 100kg, even though my LBS 1RM is 155kg. Happy to have barbell rows back on the menu!
  3. Oh, since I'm here I'd like to ask this to anyone visiting the thread: do you know where I can buy a Mother Whale, or at least find a blueprint to build it?
  4. Yeah, I'm very aware of that, although there a tendency to identification of course. That's why I phrased it as “I do 4” instead of “I am 4”: it's a habit I do, not something I am. I like your take too: “point 4 does X to me” put even more distance between me and the pattern. It also makes me appear as passive, though, while I want to take full responsibility for my actions.
  5. I'm currently focusing my strength training on singles, to test my max strength. The approach is different from what I was previously used to and so is the focus I have to maintain during the lift. So far I've had good results and I'm only now starting to hit some ceilings. There're still some gains to be made, though. My current numbers: Back Squat: 155kg Deadlift: 150kg Standing Overhead Press: 55kg Floor Press: 72,5kg Ring chin-ups: BW+32,5kg My current BW is around 65kg. My mobility game is lagging behind, mainly because I have crazy schedules and I can't even sleep a decent number of hours. So having a proper ST session is short of impossible, although I can still cram at least a session a month (with a partner!). My body craves stretching, though, so sometimes I'm almost forced to make room for a solo HF stretch. This is a major area I intend to focus on in 2024, it's just too important for me, even more so after my recent discoveries about my pelvic floor. One area I've managed to work on with consistency is ankle mobility. My right one has been suspiciously resistant to progress for too long, so I had it check by a chiro (not an actual chiro, titles are slightly different here in Italy). He made some assessments and mobilizations, said that the ankle is now free. I'm sceptical, but maybe something is moving in the right direction. Let's see. I still meditate once a day and recently I've began to do a QiGong drill aimed at relaxing the core and uncoupling hips from waist. As I said, this needs to be an area of uttermost importance for me. The goal is relaxation/suppleness, the dream is getting rid of my APT. I'm also trying to tap into my parasympathetic nervous system at will and make it my baseline. Of course yoga nidra should be helpful here, I'm just finding it hard to make space for the practice. What I'm actually doing is a breathing exercise that I keep going most of the time even during my daily life. Basically I try to breath in a relaxed and spontaneous way, focusing on make the out-breath longer than the in-breath. After the exhale I pause for a moment and then let the air flows into the lungs again for a new cycle. It took a while to get used to and sometimes I still struggle, but it is definitely doing something. Another area of focus is self observation, in order not to fall into my dysfunctional patterns. Of course I fall into them most of the time…but not all of the time. And I'm usually aware anyway, so I cannot blame anyone else but me. As a side project related to self-inquiry I looked into the Enneagram, in general, and the enneatypes in particular. Apparently I do 4 with a 3 wing.
  6. Once again, you were right @Kit_L. Although PF is a surprisingly deep and complex topic that requires rather specific knowledge. A lot happened in the latter part of 2023. For the longest time I tried to relax my perineum with yoga nidra practices as well as kegel exercises the way you suggested it. Prostatitis was recurrent though and forced me to practice with legs rested on the sofa. Eventually I got sick of this and consulted different practitioners. The first was a proctologist (suggested by mu urologist). He stated everything is fine down there, aside from my PF: apparently I contract when I'm supposed to relax and vice-versa. He of course instructed me to consult a PF therapist (which was going to be my next move anyway). The PT assessed me and said I have hypertonia (so excess of tension) of the PF, poor proprioception, and difficulty performing voluntary contractions. If I don't re-educate my pelvic floor, I'm on the right track for future incontinence and perhaps even inguinal hernias. The good news seems to be that I am responding better than expected to rehabilitation. The therapy sessions are mostly focused on internal massages aimed at stretching and releasing the muscles. Then I have to relearn the way I brace during squats and deadlift, as well as doing some breathing exercises to learn how the PF moves and how to relax it. The tricky thing here is that those muscles elongate during the inhale and contract during the exhale; I have to focus a lot to really get into this pattern.
  7. I'm still working on proper muscular activation and subsequent relaxation, but today happened something odd. I practiced yoga nidra for 30 minutes or so, using one of the recordings. Near the end of the session I noticed my prostate had inflated. I have no clue on why, I can speculate it might have something to do with hips position relative to the organ…maybe it was getting compressed because I have APT. I hope the inflammation will subside by tomorrow morning.
  8. First feedback. I don't seem to have issues in locating the various muscles. Vajroli bandha is easy enough to do, but it's challenging to completely isolate that muscle. If I initiate a somewhat strong contraction the anus gets also activated. Side note: it's surprisingly hard to do while on my back during yoga nidra. Ashwini bandha is the easiest and I can contract strongly without issues Mula bandha: I think I can do it, but it's hard to tell. I imagine to push my anus and scrotum towards each other. Again, extremely subtle sensation. ------- On a separate note, this unfortunate medical condition led me to discover some interesting proprieties of substances such as resveratrol and quercetin. Potent stuff, if you manage to increase bioavailability. I'm now symptom free, if I discount a funny feeling I sometimes get in the pelvic floor area. Another interesting data I collected, last week: a 3 days fast managed to get rid of all the symptoms (actually they were gone after 24h or so). Got them back with the first sip of coffee though.
  9. Thank you, I appreciate your take on the concept. If bacterial, yeah. My case it's just a pain in the butt (quite literally). It seems to be improving, however. Yes, it's something I plan on doing. My urologist said it's best to treat the inflammatory state first, though. In the meantime I searched the web for infos and found very little useful advices. Then I turned my eyes here, since this place it'd hands down the best resource for knowledge related to stretching and less known type of therapies. Thank you for the detailed explanation about the bandhas! I'm going to try them and report back. I'm familiar with kegels. My understanding is that kegels are the contractions used to stop the urine, while the reverse kegel is forcefully push the urine out and cause the same muscles to stretch. Nobody taught me any of this, I've read on the Net one should be careful because there's a risk to make the PF overly tight with kegels. However, if I've understood correctly, you suggest to tense the muscle and then let go to relax, similarly to what is done in yoga nidra. Am I correct?
  10. I was thinking if Kit or anybody in the forums have experience with releasing tension in the pelvic floor. Tightness and weakness in this area — often times happening at simultaneously — are quite common and can lead to a wide array of dysfunctions. Ladies are usually the primary target and therefore the ones that most often seek Pelvic Floor Therapy (which is in itself a rare specialization of physiotherapy). With my history of pubalgy and tight HF, I've always known my PF muscles are tight and possibly weak. Recently I had a wake up call: sudden prostatitis (the most obscure male genitalia disease), which I suspect is caused also by the current state of my pelvi. Does Stretch Therapy have some protocols to deal with these muscles?
  11. Long time no see! I figured I should take some time to write an update. I'm alive and well, training is solid, I'm still hiking whenever I find the time and I'm keeping up with my meditation practice. I also have some big news about my life in general. At the beginning of summer I decided to apply for the admission test to the physiotherapy course at the local university. I have little time to study a vast material, while working, so my hopes weren't that high. However I partly succeed at it. I said “partly” because I got in for my second choice (nurse school). There's still a good probability to get into physiotherapy through second chance heat, so I'm crossing my fingers. If that won't turn out to be the case, I'll attend nurse school and change to physio next year, since most of the exams during the first year are the same between both courses. I also got in a course to become a nature guide that was supposed to start the upcoming weekend. I decided to wait for the second round, beginning next spring, though. Working and studying for Uni is no joke, I don't want to risk a burnout; I need to test the water first. @Kit_L, please come back to Europe: I intend to add a ST certificate into the picture and give form to some sort of personal project. Training is currently hitting a roadblock: I strained my back while doing RDL (107,5kg). It's getting better, but too slowly. Tomorrow I'll have massage therapy done, to speed up the process. I have muscles flaring up all around my hips, I've never experienced anything like this. I'm 100% positive it's muscular in nature, though, so I'm not worried. What else? Ah, right, practices! Currently I'm very much focused into changing some mechanic behaviors I've strengthened during my whole life. This requires a good deal of self-observation practice (kinda like the “noting” Buddhist practice, but more objective), some breath work to keep my mind from wandering too much and a tiny bit of Self Inquiry. I've also set up a gratitude practice and a habit of reframing the negative self-sabotaging talk that goes on inside my head. I've also tried to learn as much as possible about the Enneagram and I think I can confidently say I fixate at point 4. That's all for now!
  12. Hi, @Olga. I cannot imagine what you're going through. I'm European myself and I can feel a sense of uneasiness in me since the war started, but you must be experiencing the conflict on a whole different level. It's probably a suffering you're feeling in your bones, but it's still the mind. It could be useful to discharge the tension you're feeling with emotional outbursts. Crying, or even throwing punches at a mattress can help. Physical exhaustion is also a good solution, as it discharges energy and forces you to be with your bodily sensations. It's important, however, that you avoid as much as possible opportunities to re-charge the tension. Reading or listening news on a daily basis, talking about the issue, actively worrying over it…all of that is going to damage you. You're too involved, the waves are too big for you to swim in this sea. Try to read the news once a week, or even once every two weeks — if at all. Above everything: do not argue over the topic. I should also mention that a standard meditation practice is helpful here. You're tense because your mind is too crowded. Alongside limiting exposure to your “toxin”, sitting still and witnessing the breath could be a good antidote.
  13. Fascinating read! If you're interested in the actual list of food to eat and to avoid, here's the link for the pdf. The list starts from page 6. I mostly followed the plan, but occasionally some root vegetables have been consumed, as well as a couple of wine glasses for celebrations. It's been a fun ride, but every diet involves restrictions and therefore increases stress. I'll revert to a normal way of eating because food is good and it's also an essential part of my diet. Also Christmas is approaching. Having said that, I'll most likely do some cycle of keto diet to reset my organism (as well as some fasting). Since you are knowledgeable on the topic, few questions: Is there a way to keep the current energy levels and mental clarity, when eating carbs? I didn't have aesthetic goals, but I'm pleased with the results nonetheless. I wasn't fat by any means, but had a slightly inflated belly (as well as a meteorism issue from time to time). I'd like to keep this lean physique while on carbs…how? I didn't really lose strength, but the deadlift where the only exercise where the progress began to stall, I blame it on the low carb intake. Are whole grains really better than white grains? Eating fat *and* card: yay or nay?
  14. During the whole month of November I’ve been on an extremely low carb diet. A slight modification of a keto diet. I’ve also been doing intermittent fasting, but this is not a new thing for me. It’s been quite a ride. No pasta, no sweets, no rice, no fruit, no processed foods, no alcool, etc. It was a test for my willpower and I’m happy to say that I sticked to the plan. What I was not prepared to were the results. The adjustment period was challenging: low energy, headaches, bad breath are the top worst things. After that, everything skyrocketed. I’m shocked. I have so much energy I’m almost hyperactive, and this despite sleeping very little. My mental clarity is also improved a lot. I’…fresher! It’s amazing, really. Physically I’m leaner (maybe I lost a tiiiny bit of muscle, but overall I look good and, above all, I didn’t really lose strength.
  15. Hi dear friend. I skipped quite a few updates because I'm getting busier and busier with both work and life. I'm still training under @Frederik, it's just harder to keep updating this log. I went to Ireland this august, amazing trip, although quite expensive and mostly improvised. I'm now packing my stuff to move to my own place (finally), which still doesn't mean full independence because my mother lives basically next door…but it's a start. Of course this mean more expenses in a time when my job isn't paying me much and I have quite a lot of bills to pay. So yeah, tight on money, which is giving me some anxiety because I'm a worrier at heart, but overall things are going good. Training…well…major thing happened in September: I partially dislocated my left shoulder while doing MU. It went out and in by itself. It was my fault entirely. As @Kit_L once said: “Most injuries come from stupid decisions”. I'm good now, I just feel some muscle aches from time to time. Of course MU are out of my program for now, but I'm still working hard and seeing results. I've turned 31 last weekend. I'm an old fuck. This month I've decided to join an online spiritual retreat. I don't know what to expect, I just know it's held by one of @[DW]'s teachers and centered upon the topic of “knowing yourself”. It's suggested to follow a diet to “reset” the body, which is basically a variant of the ketogenic diet. Hard to follow for a pasta eater like myself! The most struggle I have right know is getting enough calories.
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