Star Wars Boot Camp Redo

Star WArs boot Camp fitness series

Well, the best laid plans of mice and men…amiright?

The day I decided to start my brand new Boot Camp series was the day that we found out our friend Wally had died. After attempting to keep on keeping on despite the mounting grief washing through my soul, I finally came to the point where I couldn’t just keep on. I had to stop. Stop what I was doing. Stop and take stock of why I was doing it. And in the aftermath of tragedy, my body didn’t care about getting back into shape. The Dark Side had taken over.

I’d be lying if I said that the Darkness has left…it hasn’t.

But this past Monday, I decided to give my Star Wars Boot Camp a do-over. The desire to tune my body back to healthy has resurfaced and I feel extra motivated to make the best of my life. Especially remembering that there are people who don’t get one more day. It really does put your grief into perspective. It puts your fears and failures into perspective. And for me, it makes me stronger. It makes me want to fight for the best life I can have.

Enter…

Week 1: Sith Apprentice Week (Anakin Skywalker)

I’m altering the routine I had previously shared just a bit (pray I don’t alter it further.) ūüėČ

Here’s a look at my morning routine, which I will do every morning this week:

1 min of each

  • Jumping Jacks
  • High Knees
  • Squats
  • Butt Kickers
  • Leg Lunges
  • Jog in Place
  • Crunches
  • High Kicks
  • Plank
  • Jump Rope

Arm Routine

  • Dumbbell Shoulder Press (4 sets, 8 reps)
  • Standing Dumbbell Curls (3 sets, 12 reps)
  • Reverse Curls (3 sets, 12 reps)
  • Dumbbell Lateral Raises (3 sets, 12 reps)
  • Hammer Curls (2 sets, 15 reps)
  • Tricep Press (3 sets, 12 reps)
  • Upright Dumbbell Row (3 sets, 12 reps)

Here’s another look at my playlist this week:

 

Bonus Rounds

To add a little extra oomph to this week’s workouts, I’m adding some YouTube videos that will focus on¬†some Sith skills, such as lightsaber combat, Kendo and martial arts.¬† I chose one of these 4 days out of the week to try. Take a look:

No guarantee that I’ll master these in a week…in fact, it’s a safe bet to say that I won’t. But that’s not really the point of Boot Camp. This Boot Camp is supposed to give me focus. Every morning, I’ll be narrowing in on what’s happening with my body. Where the pain is, where I need to push myself. And by focusing on those things, it will take my eyes off of the unhealthy habits I’ve been forming in the last month or so.

As of today, I’m 2 days into it and I’ve had successful morning and evening workouts each day since starting! Now it’s time to add on these extra bonus workouts and push more…just like a Sith Apprentice would. Channeling my inner Anakin!

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Here’s a look at some of the training Hayden Christensen did for Episode III to get you inspired!

12 Days of Star Wars

#12Days of Star Wars Instagram Challenge Nerds

Nerds!! There are only 11 days left till our eyes behold the next installment in the Star Wars saga. (10 if you plan on going on Thursday night!) This Star Wars is going to have a decidedly different flavor than the 7 that have preceded it. There will be no scrawl at the beginning of the film. It’s going to take place in a timeline that we are familiar with but with a whole slew of new characters. And I, personally, am on the edge of my seat waiting for opening night!! I can barely contain my excitement!

I’m doing a Star Wars Challenge over on Instagram to give myself an outlet for all my Star Wars joy! Come play! @nerdinthesand #12DaysofStarWars

#12Days of Star Wars Instagram Challenge Nerds

What are you most looking forward to seeing in Rogue One? Brand new characters like Jyn Orso, Captain Cassian Andor, K-2SO and Director Orson Krennic? The return of familiar characters like Mon Mothma, Bail Organa and Darth Vader himself? Perhaps you’re pumped to see how it’s going to set up the story to lead right into our beloved Original Trilogy? I can’t decide which part I’m most excited about.

I just know that every time a new Star Wars comes out I feel like I did in 1999 when The Phantom Menace came out and my friends, family and I waited in line for hours for that midnight showing.

I grew up with Star Wars (this you already know) so there was never a time when it wasn’t a part of my world. I don’t remember the first time I saw Episodes IV, V and VI. But I¬†do remember when the news hit that George was finally going to give us a prequel trilogy. The impossible had become possible. There would be more Star Wars in our future!!¬†I felt almost the same way in 2012 when Disney announced it’s acquisition of Star Wars and that ¬†the purchase would mean¬†that once again, the Star Wars universe would be expanding.

So yeah…I’m pumped! There is no fandom that hits me the way Star Wars does. No fandom has ever come close. And I think…no fandom ever will.

Get your tickets for Rogue One TODAY!

30 Days of Nerdy Hair – Day 17

30 Days of Nerdy Hair blog post

Day 17: Padme Amidala from Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace

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30 Days of Nerdy Hair Day 17 Padme Amidala Star wArs Episode I The Phantom Menace hair blog post

Nerd in the City Book Club is on Goodreads

Before Star Wars: The Force Awakens came out in theaters, I attempted to make my way through the old canon of Expanded Universe materials. But since I only started in January of last year, I didn’t get very far. There is just so much to get through and I am a slow reader. I like to take my time with books and really live in them for a little while.

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So…my mission failed.

But I will not be discouraged by my lack of accomplishment. Instead I will embark on a new endeavor and I want you to come along for the ride. Over on Goodreads, I’ve started a Nerd in the City book club. 1 book a month…totally doable. And we are starting with The Phantom Menace novelization, which is the first canon book according to the Disney Reading Group.

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I know…it’s not original canon. And I know that some of you are still stinging from the pain of the disbanding of it. My very own cousin, Wesley, refuses to read any of the new stuff in solidarity with George Lucas’ vision for the Star Wars Universe.

But, reader…the past is the past. It’s time to move forward. The old canon isn’t going anywhere and if you happen to have about 15 years on your hands in the future, then you should definitely dive right in. I intend to finish that mission one day, when I’m old and gray and have nothing but time.

As for right now, I want to prepare myself for Star Wars: Episode VIII which will be released in December of 2017. If my calculations are correct and barring any unforeseen book releases, if we start reading The Phantom Menace in February, we should be reading The Force Awakens novelization by November 2017 which is complete perfection. What a great way to immerse in the SWU while we suffer the pain of waiting for the next movie. (Pain may be a bit strong.)

Anyways…the invitation is open. The virtual cookies have been baked and my virtual living room is very comfortable. So I hope you bring a friend!

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Now What Do You Do?

If you haven’t yet seen Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens, then I’d venture to say it’s only a matter of time till you do.

X-Wings Star Wars The Force Awakens recap blog

The biggest pop culture event of all time…even the Muggles want to be a part of this. There’s a lot of new people discovering the wonderful world of Star Wars. Maybe they just never devoted the time to watch all 6 movies before (or 3 if you’re a purist.) Maybe they thought it was kid’s stuff, but now are discovering the truth.

Inevitably they’re gonna reach a point where they’re going to wonder…”Now what?” It always happens after the excitement and fervor of a new movie dies down. It happens to me after binge-watching a show or reading a great book series or watching a new Star Wars movie. It’s hard because all you (I) want to do is immerse in the fictional world you’ve (I’ve)¬†just been a part of. It recently happened to me after watching 4 straight seasons of Scandal. It happened after reading Harry Potter, but nowhere has it hit as hard as with the Star Wars Universe.

So…you’ve seen Star Wars. You’re in what Amazon likes to call a #Showhole. But there’s good news. This is where the fun begins. This is when you can start to discover what we die hard fans have been doing to stay in touch with that galaxy far, far away for years.

It’s called the Expanded Universe and it’s marvelous!

Here’s what you’re gonna do…If you’ve been living in a cave and have just emerged after 12 long years and haven’t had time to take a shower and get yourself to the movie theater quite yet…then Step 1 is pretty clear.

Complete Star Wars Saga. Episode I - VI

And if you haven’t gone back and watched the 6 movies that came before then…actually scratch that other Step 1… this is Step 1.

Star Wars Rebels Disney XD

Next up is the television universe created by Cartoon Network and Disney XD in the form of Clone Wars (seasons 1-6 available on Netflix) and Rebels (season 1 available on Netflix, season 2 currently airing on Disney XD.)

New Expanded Universe Novels by Disney Story Group

After watching all that, go to your local book store and pick up the newest novels in the Expanded Universe: Dark Disciple, Lords of the Sith, Tarkin, A New Dawn, Heir to the Jedi, Aftermath, Lost Stars, etc. These novels start to build the world around what you know and have seen on screen. They fill in the blanks and flesh out the questions. They also allow supporting characters to have rich story lines.

Star Wars Comic Books by Marvel

After you’ve read all that, head to your local comic book store and dive into the Expanded Universe created by Marvel Comics. The comic runs for Star Wars, Lando, Darth Vader, Princess Leia, Kanan… The best thing about all this material is that is fits together like one giant puzzle. Each component working with the rest. It’s very impressive!

If you’ve done all that and are still thirsty for more. Go see Episode VII 2 or 3 or 12 more times so you know the dialogue by heart and then…

Go deep or go home.

Star Wars Legends Expanded Universe Timothy Zahn

The Star Wars Universe goes beyond Disney cannon. But I warn you, this step is not for the faint of heart. It involves heart break, misery and long hours reading amazing stories that are now considered mere Legend in the Star Wars Universe.

You wanted more and here it is! Silver platter not included!

30 Days of Nerdy Hair – Day 16

Day 16: Padme Amidala from Star Wars Episode III: Revenge of the Sith

I was going to save this one for Thursday, the 18th, which will mark that we only have 6 months till Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens opens in theaters. But today I woke up with great Padme hair texture, so I had to bump it up a couple days. Padme Amidala starts off in Episode 1 as the queen of Naboo. Her hair is very strategic and massive. It’s part of her costume and her persona as queen. It’s meant to intimidate. By Episode III she has softened her hairstyles, rocking curls and waves. The hair becomes far less intimidating and much more feminine. Representing a change, not only in her political status (she is no longer queen of Naboo in Ep. III) but also in her personal life. She is married and pregnant, about to give birth to her and Anakin’s child. This is a much different Padme and her hair is a reflection of that. Hair can tell you a lot of things about a person!!

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I used a clip in place of her headpiece and just let the curls cascade down. I also added a coral lip gloss like she’s wearing in the above picture. Now all I need is a flowy, Naboo nightgown and a very angry, confused Jedi husband and my journey to Padme cosplay will be complete.

 Is anyone else so freaking ready for The Force Awakens??? Is it December yet???

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Are you following on  Facebook, Pinterest, Instagram and/ or Twitter yet? If not, click the links and come join the party!! #30DaysofNerdyHair

May the hair be with you…always.

8 Months Till Star Wars Episode VII: The Force Awakens

Yes, the waiting is getting harder and harder. Especially with the new trailer out this week. Which, if you haven’t seen yet, must mean you are living in a cave on a desert planet far, far away. For those of us who aren’t a crazy, old man, take another look:

Yeah, so patience isn’t exactly my strong suit. But I’m trying really hard to bask in the pre-Force Awakens world of Star Wars. There are so many wonderful stories to read and watch in the waiting. So while I’m working on my patience, I will be doing these things.

Star Wars Digital

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Show of hands, who will be purchasing both Star Wars trilogies on a digital platform regardless of whether or not you own DVD versions of the films. Count me it. Not only is this the most everlasting version of Star Wars available to us, there are also brand new behind the seasons featurettes available. And if you are anything like me, you consume new Star Wars information like a ream of frozen Thin Mints.

Star Wars Expanded Universe: Legends

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By now we all know that the entire Expanded Universe has been relegated to Star Wars Legends to make room for all the new stories as well as the story line of the new films, but that doesn’t diminish the amazing work of all the authors who penned the Legends. Like Timothy Zahn and James Luceno and Drew Karpyshyn and John Jackson Miller and many, many more. So in the ether of the waiting zone I will be diving head first into the Expanded Universe starting with Timothy Zahn’s epic Thrawn Trilogy! And hopefully getting through as many as I can. Because after December I will be focusing on…

New Star Wars Expanded Universe

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All of the new novels that are now considered canon. Not to say I won’t return to the Legends, because, as I said, they are amazing stories that deserve to be read. But I want to fully immerse in what Lucasfilm and the Disney overlords are considering part of the official Star Wars Universe. There are many new titles coming out not only this year, but in the works in order to start making use of the word Expanded. Right now the timeline is a little thin, especially given how long the previous Legends timeline is. But if I start soon, then I won’t be as behind as I am with Legends. So there’s no time like the present. The only current canon novel I’ve read so far is¬†A New Dawn by John Jackson Miller. Which leads me to…

Star Wars Rebels

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The explosive Disney XD cartoon that is not just for kids takes place in the gap between Revenge of the Sith and A New Hope. It is a great way to stay connected to the Star Wars Universe in the space between big budget films and the story being told is very strong! If you don’t want to watch week to week, go ahead and start with…

Star Wars Clone Wars

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If you don’t like to wait for new episodes to come out, then Clone Wars is what you want. This is what I’m currently watching. And as sad as it is when a great show ends, I love being able to just power through and fully immerse in the experience of a show. And Clone Wars is truly a wonderful show. The Cartoon Network series takes place, obviously, during the Clone Wars in the space between Attack of the Clones and Revenge of the Sith. It does an amazing job of bridging that gap, not only by giving us actual stories from the legendary Clone Wars, but also in Anakin’s decent and temptation towards the Dark Side of the Force. Something believed to be missing from Revenge of the Sith for¬†avid Star Wars fans. Clone Wars boasts of strong villains like Asajj Ventress and Savage Opress, new heroes like the young padawan Ahsoka Tano and Captain Rex as well as all the characters we love from the prequels, Obi-Wan, Anakin, C3PO, R2D2, Padme.

Star Wars Comics

Marvel

Star Wars comics are returning home to Marvel Entertainment. From 1977-1987, Marvel held the property. Dark Horse got a hold of them after Marvel and they have been responsible for all the modern Star Wars comics that we know and love. But this is the year that Star Wars returns to Marvel, where it always belonged (not to belittle the amazing work Dark Horse did for the comic universe.) With Disney owning both Marvel and Star Wars, it makes sense to keep it all in the family. Now, all the comics coming out of this Mavel/ Star Wars partnership are considered current canon so this blurb could technically belong in the New Expanded Universe column. But comic books are an entity in and of themselves. I love comic books, but have a hard time keeping up with weekly serials. I tend to gravitate towards books or graphic novels. But if comics are your thing or you want to expand your knowledge of the SWEU, then you should start with Lando #1 which hits the racks in July.

There you go. Plenty of Star Warsian things to do while we eagerly (and patiently) wait for December to roll around.

What will you be doing while you’re waiting?

Dreaming of SW Celebration

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Sadly I am not in Anaheim, California right this very minute. I am not soaking up the California sun and preparing for an epic weekend of Star Wars culture. That is what I’m not doing.

What I am doing is dreaming of the panels I’ll be missing. And reading my Star Wars EU novels and watching Star Wars on digital platforms. Anything to be connected to the massive event that I am sadly not partaking in,

I have been to Star Wars Celebrations of yesteryear and I have to tell you… it’s an amazing experience. Especially for the fanatics of the world (that includes your favorite nerdy girl!) Luckily there are some new ways to stay in touch with SW Celebrations as the weekend progresses and the geeks keep on geeking out.

In just under an¬†hour, JJ Abrams and Kathleen Kennedy will be taking the main Celebration Stage to kickoff the weekend and talk about… well, you know what they’re talking about. A little movie coming out in December. An underground indie if ever there was one.

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Only the biggest movies of the year (Sorry, Avengers. I love you, but step aside for the King!) Who knows what untold treasure trove of information they will have to share. Luckily for those of us¬†who can’t be there, Verizon and StarWars.com are bringing us the action, live. Click Here for more info!!¬†

Not only that, but there are the ever present social media platforms that make it easy to follow along.

Twitter: @SW_Celebration

Facebook: Star Wars Celebration

Instagram: @starwarscelebration

You Tube: Star Wars Celebration

These are, of course, the best way to stay connected to all the action from a galaxy far,¬†far away. And when it comes to Star Wars, you never want to miss any of the action. It’s basically the best part!!!

If you are at the Con, make sure to keep us informed and shout it out if you are so inclined. I’ll be bringing you the panels I wish I was attending this weekend. As well as any good stuff coming out of the Con!! (of which there will be plenty!)

So may the Force be with you, my lovely nerds!! Enjoy this little look at Star Wars Celebrations of yesteryear!!

Ready to rule!

5 Fandom Friday

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My Comfort Films

As usual, to pick only 5 is a very hard thing indeed. I have so many movies I love and find comfort in. But here are the 5 that I turn to the most.

#1 – Star Wars

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Star Wars is my favorite of all! So naturally it’s what I turn to most. I put it on in the background when I have work to do. I sit down and avidly watch it and quote along on rainy Saturdays. I can always turn to Star Wars no matter what. And I know what you’re thinking. ‘Why are the prequels on here.’ Because I like them, that’s why! They may not be my favorites. They may not even be good. Who cares! When I say Star Wars I mean all of Star Wars. And every time I watch any of the Star Wars movies there is a comfort in the watching. There’s a feeling like I’m back home and safe and watching something I know word for word… all 6. Sure the original trilogy has something the prequels could never hope to reach, but that doesn’t lessen the fact that I like the prequels for what they are.

#2 РThe Philadelphia Story

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This has long been a favorite of mine. It has two of my very favorite actors of all time. Cary Grant and Katharine Hepburn. And Jimmy Stewart is nothing to sneeze at either! It’s got some great lines like, “I’m such an unholy ¬†mess of a girl.” or “I promise to be yar!” I was practically raised on black and white movies and there’s something romantic and enchanting about them. And this above all others is the one I go to when I’m in a mushy, romantic sort of mood. (Which happens more often then you might think!)

#3 – The Court Jester

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This is an old family favorite. My brother and I must have watched this about 100 times when we were kids. So much that I have every song memorized. Humor is definitely my kryptonite. I love to laugh and this movie makes me laugh every time I watch, even though I know the jokes are coming. That’s the mark of a truly good comedy. The humor never gets old. Danny Kaye is a master at his craft and this is an example of some of his very best work!!

#4 – Muppet Treasure Island

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Another family favorite. (There’s something to that!) You can never go wrong with The Muppets. They sing. They dance. It’s family friendly and it has Tim Curry, who is always amazing. This is another film that I have pretty much memorized from watching over and over again.

#5 – The Mirror Has Two Faces

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This is one of my all time favorite romantic comedies. Barbra Streisand… Jeff Bridges. Need I say more. That’s enough to hook ya right there. It’s delightful. It’s romantic. It’s one of me and my mom’s favorite movies. And if you’ve never seen it, do yourself a favor and go rent it!! It’s a treasure.

What movies do you turn to for comfort? I wanna know!!