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VioletFlame

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Everything posted by VioletFlame

  1. I am in for this challenge, but I'll have to come back with more details. I broke my ankle 2 weeks ago, so this challenge will be all about healing and developing a new fitness routine
  2. My attribute points: Goal 1 (strength & flexibility) STR +4 Goal 2 (cardio) DEX +2 STA +2 Goal 3 (healthy eating) CON 4 Life goal 1 (connections) CHA +2 WIS 1 Strength (STR) - physical strengthDexterity (DEX) - agility and speedStamina (STA) - Endurance and EnergyConstitution (CON) - ability to resist damage and diseaseWisdom (WIS) - intuition and sense of things around himselfCharisma (CHA) - force of personality and physical attractiveness
  3. My main quest is one that I have been focusing on since the beginning of the year: upleveling my life in 2013. My intention was/is to be healthy, strong, balanced in body/mind/spirit, and accomplish my life goals. This challenge is going to be a little difficult because I am traveling for 3 out of the 6 weeks (and I got completely off track during our 2 week break.) So I am making this a 7 week challenge for myself so I can keep going during our break week. My challenge goals are mainly maintenance (yay for me to have gotten to this place during the first half of the year!) 1. Strength & Flexibility - Continue with my yoga and strength training to increase my upper body and core strength. Strength workouts: 60 min per week Yoga workouts: 120 min per week (15 to 20 min per day) 2. Cardio - I don't know if it will be easier to track miles or minutes while I'm traveling, so I am covering both. Cardio workouts: 300 min per week -or- 15 miles 3. Healthy Eating - this one might be the most difficult, so I a making it simple and something that I can tell all my family so they can keep my accountable. Eat leafy green veggies every day Grading - I will grade each week based on percentages, 90% = A, etc. For #3, 100% = 7 days. Side Life Quest 1. Connect with family and friends on a deeper level. I really wanted to make this goal about my dissertation (I am on a roll right now). But honestly, it's more important to me that I be fully focused on visiting my family and friends and connecting with them. Grading - for each time that I notice that I am not fully present in a conversation, I will make a conscious effort to focus and share. I need to figure out a way to note this on a daily basis, but I'm sure I will figure something out. Actually, what I might measure is my daily meditation time. I will need some time for myself every day so I don't get grumpy when I'm with others. My Motivation I want to have a long and happy life. If I could spend all my time reading and thinking I probably would. I need motivation to move my body and eat mindfully. By the end of this year I want to be finished or nearly finished with my dissertation.
  4. Good article on the benefits of yoga: http://www.yoganonymous.com/10-of-the-many-benefits-of-practicing-yoga/
  5. Hi everyone, I just found the new thread - and the new format for the challenge. I'll have to think about this one. Evenewbie - congratulations! You are the perfect addition to our already amazing moderator group. I am looking forward to this next challenge.
  6. Final Report 1. Strength - Just DO IT! - increase my upper body and core strength. I am trying a new method, and I might change this one in a month if it's not working. What I am going to do is pick 4 exercises and measure my progress. My goal is to increase either the time or reps every week. Grading: increase in each of the 4 measurements for each of the 6 weeks. A = 100% (24 increases), B = 90%, etc. I changed the measurements once I started going to the gym - and woo hoo for me for getting back to the gym. This JUST DO IT mentality helped this challenge. I'm going to try that again for my next challenge on my dissertation. It is so nice to know that my strength goal will be a maintenance one for the next challenge. I am so happy about this one. 2. Healthy Eating & Cardio - mindful eating every day, this includes eating mostly veggies and healthy fats, drinking a lot of liquids, and planning my meals each morning. Also maintain my cardio level of 5 hours per week. I usually keep my cardio separate, but I want to try something new and measure my body fat%. I don't really think my scale is accurate, but it should be able to measure the change. I have no idea what to even set as a goal at the end of 6 weeks, so I am going to shoot for a decrease in body fat % by comparing averages over a week. Grading: Starting body fat % on 6/3 = 38.5%. Starting weight is 153.6, I would love to lose 6 lbs in 6 weeks. A grade = decrease for each of the 6 weeks. B grade = 5 of 6 weeks. C = 4 weeks. D = 3 weeks. F = no progress, or an increase. Results: body fat % at 37.4%, overall decrease of 1.1%. Ending weight 153. I am happy with a B in this goal. I increased the intensity of my cardio. For this next challenge I want to get back to planning my meals. That seems to work the best for me. 3. Life goal: Set Weekly Goals and Expand Comfort Zone. I started a weekly goals habit with my last challenge. In my formal goal setting process I make sure I maintain balance in different areas. This challenge I want to put one thing on my list each week to expand my comfort zone. Grading: 6 sets of weekly goals created by noon Monday each week and one goal accomplished each week that I really didn't want to do. Results: 6 of 6 weekly goal setting lists. 5 of 6 completed goals expanding my comfort zone. I am also very happy with a B+ in this goal. I only missed one comfort-zone-expanding goal, but I know I will do it in this next challenge.
  7. Weekly Report - week 6 . 1. Strength - Just DO IT! - increase my upper body and core strength by increasing time and reps each week. increased either reps or weights for my 50 minute strength routine at the gym on sunday - that is 3 weeks in a row Crow Pose practice: yes - and I am doing microseconds in the actual pose 2. Healthy Eating & Cardio Starting body fat % on 7/1 = 37.1%, at the end of the week the average was 37.4% Starting weight is 152.6, end of week was 153 15.9 miles for the week, my goal was 20, but I think that's too much time given my other priorities. I am lowering my weekly goal to 15 miles per week. My eating habits continue to slide, but it's not bad. I can still get back on track. 3. Life goal: Set Weekly Goals and Expand Comfort Zone. Created my goal list on Sunday. Did do my expand comfort zone goal for this week. On Monday morning I started teaching a training class and I decided to take on a difficult student as my challenge. It worked out very well.
  8. Weekly Report - week 5 (posted at the end of week 6) . 1. Strength - Just DO IT! - increase my upper body and core strength by increasing time and reps each week. increased either reps or weights for my 50 minute strength routine at the gym on sunday - really pushed myself and I'm happy. Crow Pose practice: yesWent to the gym on Sunday and got in a real strength workout! I am giving myself an A+ on this one because I was able to meet or beat my workout from over 6 months ago. 2. Healthy Eating & Cardio Starting body fat % on 7/1 = 37.2%, at the end of the week the average was 37.1% Starting weight is 152.2, end of week was 152.6 20.3 miles for the week, I made my goal there. My eating habits are sliding a bit. I'm giving myself a check for lowered bf% 3. Life goal: Set Weekly Goals and Expand Comfort Zone. Created my goal list on Sunday. Did do my expand comfort zone goal for this week.
  9. SS - I signed up for the newsletter on that website. Thank you for sharing it! Way to go on the challenge everyone, even if you haven't posted it. This fit in perfectly with the theme of my challenge this time around - Just Do It (and cut the crappy excuses). I was cleaning up my dissertation bookshelf yesterday, and put away a lot of personal books. For further help on getting through excuses I highly recommend books by Martha Beck, particularly the 4-Day Win. http://www.amazon.com/The-Four-Day-Win-Achieve-Thinner/dp/1594868123/ I bought it as a diet motivation book, but it is so much more. She goes into all these different research studies about motivation and all the different things that can hold us back on any life change goals. I learned from her why I get bored easily and why I need to keep coming up with different challenges for myself. (based on a research study on rats and drugs) At the moment, telling myself 'just do it' whenever I start whining is working well. So I give myself an A for this week's challenge.
  10. I did 2 things last week that I wouldn't have thought of doing. The first was cleaning up my hotel room before I checked out. I threw away all my trash, put things back into place. I consider myself a fairly neat person, but I really move stuff out of my way because I like to unpack everything. It was a small thing, but I think it was a kindness. Then on Sunday I decided I needed some motivation to go to the gym. Our small town has a community center where people drop off clothing and other donations. I am pretty good about giving away clothes that I no longer wear (http://lifehacker.com/5502694/weed-out-the-clothes-you-dont-wear-with-a-simple-hanger-trick), but I'm not so good about weeding out shoes I don't wear. I gave away 10 pairs of shoes. 10 pairs! five of them were tennies and hiking shoes, the other 5 were summer sandals and shoes that I think I might wear, but they aren't that comfortable. It makes me happy knowing that someone has nice shoes that were doing nothing in my closet.
  11. Weekly Report - week 4 Wow, we are in week 5 already, where did the time go? I had a great week 4. I made it to the gym on Sunday afternoon and stayed for almost 2 hours. I haven't been there in over 6 months. I don't know why, I just couldn't get myself motivated to go. I was going to cancel my gym membership, but I never got around to it. Now I feel like I'm loving going to the gym again. My yoga routine is sort of my reward after my workout. There is this huge padded table at the gym, and I can do much better when my muscles are really warmed up. . 1. Strength - Just DO IT! - increase my upper body and core strength by increasing time and reps each week. Plank: start 2:00 minutes, end ? Side Plank: start 45 sec each side, end ? Pushups: start 20 normal pushups (down to about 2-3 inches from the floor. (2 sets) ended with 24 normal pushups Tricep dip: start 23 reps, end 30 reps Crow Pose practice: yesWent to the gym on Sunday and got in a real strength workout! I am giving myself an A+ on this one because I was able to meet or beat my workout from over 6 months ago. 2. Healthy Eating & Cardio Starting body fat % on 6/24 = 37.2%, at the end of the week the average was 37.2% Starting weight is 153.0, end of week was 152.2 I did really well considering that I spent two full days driving. I got in 19.5 miles for the week, my goal was 20 but I ended up spending time at the gym on Sunday instead of walking. That was a good trade off. 3. Life goal: Set Weekly Goals and Expand Comfort Zone. Created my goal list on Sunday. Did do my expand comfort zone goal for this week. Yes, for the 2nd week in a row. My goal was to get back on track with my dissertation and create a plan of action for the next 6 weeks. I was so excited after doing this on Sunday that I jumped right into my comfort-zone expanding goal on Monday morning. Woo hoo! I decided on Sunday that my comfort-zone expansion goal for week 5 would be to tackle one of the most difficult things on my dissertation to-do list. This was to ask for someone from a facebook group to be my accountability buddy. I hardly ever participate in this group, but I asked on Monday morning and the perfect person answered. She just finished her dissertation last fall, and I feel like she is really going to help me keep on track. So.. now it's Tuesday and I feel like I should set another comfort-zone-expanding goal. I noticed from week 2 that I didn't do my goal to create a video of myself for an online class. I have a new training starting on Monday. I am going to make that stupid video. I can do this! Oh, and I have another fun thing to share. My travel last week was for a trainers' retreat with my online teacher buddies. I told them all about Nerd Fitness and my success. I am hoping some of them join us.
  12. Ha ha, so was this a management training thing? Or did you lose a bet? I could probably get more money if I told people they had to pay me to stop singing. I get an A+ for my expanding comfort zone. I am getting so good at this that I tackled this week's goal on Monday morning. That is exactly how it is supposed to work - my comfort zone is getting bigger. I might have to do 2 goals this week.
  13. Hi Eve, thanks for dropping by. I haven't had as much time to be on the forum either. I think you are right about less distractions. Now it's back to doing all those things I put on hold during the travel weeks.
  14. Hi there MadSci, Every day is a new day. If dropping the sugar habit was easy the grocery stores would have to change everything around. I give myself a break when i'm stressed out, sometimes those old coping mechanisms keep us from going completely off the deep end. The good news is that you are getting back on track. Way to go!
  15. I had lunch with a 'virtual' friend today, I am counting that as getting in touch. It added several hours to a long day of driving, but I'm glad we got to connect in person. I will be practicing random acts of kindness over the next several days. I like doing that anyway, it's fun.
  16. Hi, I am so glad you saw that on the spreadsheet. I am traveling this week, so my messages might be short at first... but I will be here til the end of the challenge. Yay for you - and it's always good to ease into yoga postures.
  17. Hi MadScientist, We seem to have a few things in common, so I have 'adopted' you for our mini-challenge this week. I am doing some traveling, but I will try to check in on you every evening.
  18. Thanks for the comments Laura. My best friend is an extrovert - almost the extreme opposite of me. I pretend I'm her. We talked about introverts/extroverts once. She said she is really interested in other people and that's what drives her to ask questions. It's funny, because I think she talks a lot about herself. But she has a lot of really interesting stories. Where I live made for interesting conversation, so I talked about that when I couldn't think of anything else to say. Where are you from is a good icebreaker question at a conference.
  19. Midpoint challenge reflection.... I can see some baby muscles on my forearms. That's pretty good considering I'm not putting very much time into my strength routine. I keep reminding myself that I am actually sticking with it this challenge, and showing improvement every week. My abs are also getting stronger. I'm not tracking my situps specifically, but I can feel my abs are much stronger now than they were 3 weeks ago. I was worried that my traveling would set me back, but I found myself doing better - way better than I expected. I think the Druid mini-challenge is perfect for me, I like seeing those miles add up. My life goal of doing something outside my comfort zone is also working for me. I like choosing a different goal each week. I have one goal that I missed from week 2, but I know I'll come back and finish that one by the end of the challenge.
  20. Weekly Report - week 3 Week #3 turned out to be really great. I was motivated to eat well and get in a lot of walking during my conference. I forgot how much distance I can cover when I don't have distractions like dogs and beautiful scenery. : ) I am moving slowly forward on my upper body strength, but I am moving forward, which means something is working this challenge. . 1. Strength - Just DO IT! - increase my upper body and core strength by increasing time and reps each week. Plank: start 1:50 minutes, end 2:00 Side Plank: start 41 sec each side, end 45 Pushups: start 40 halfsies , moved to 45 halfsies (in 3 sets), ended with 20 normal pushups (down to about 2-3 inches from the floor. (2 sets) Tricep dip: start 15 reps, end 15 +8 repsCrow Pose practice: yes 2. Healthy Eating & Cardio Starting body fat % on 6/17 = 38.0%, at the end of the week the average was 37.2% Starting weight is 153.8, end of week was 153.0 Cardio was great this week, even with two travel days I did almost 8 hours. My eating was great given the circumstances. They didn't exactly have the healthiest food at the conference, but I did make good choices. Because I was gone I couldn't do my daily weigh-ins. I don't really trust my stats, but I know I'm moving in the right direction. I feel leaner. 3. Life goal: Set Weekly Goals and Expand Comfort Zone. Created my goal list on Sunday. I am planning my strength workouts, this is helping a lot. Did do my expand comfort zone goal for this week. Yeah! I acted the part of an extrovert and even sat next to the keynote speaker for dinner. I am feeling so proud of myself. My next goal is something I really don't want to do. I am planning on getting back on track with my dissertation starting July 1. I need a plan of action and to organize all my stuff. The organizing will probably be easier, but I don't think I'll have time for it until next Sunday. I am traveling again this week, Wed. thru Sat. I will be driving about 12 hours total, so I am taking my voice recorder and I will talk to myself about my dissertation plan when I get really bored.
  21. I started seriously meditating after an author I trust said it was the one easy thing that would make a huge difference in anyone's life. I do it first thing in the morning before my brain wakes up. I listen to a guided meditation or just count my breaths. I can't go longer than 15 minutes, and I'm sure even just 5 minutes in the morning would make a difference. My goal is not to silence my mind, but to have only one stream of thought instead of many. The deep breathing also lowers stress, as I'm sure all our yoga practitioners already know. Here is an article on 20 research-based benefits from mindfulness meditation: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/04/08/mindfulness-meditation-benefits-health_n_3016045.html
  22. Excellent! I sat myself down across from the keynote speaker at dinner. For one night and one afternoon I acted like a total extrovert. I am so proud of myself. I'll keep up with 15 min of meditation daily. I hope we can get to the 24 hours.
  23. Weekly Report - week 2 Week #2 was weird. I just had an odd week and I wasn't doing my daily routines. I didn't do bad, but I was hoping for more progress this past week because I am traveling the next two weeks. Oh well, and who knows, it might be easier for me when I'm traveling. I need a better system for tracking my strength training, but it is what it is. At least I am feeling stronger and seeing results. 1. Strength - Just DO IT! - increase my upper body and core strength by increasing time and reps each week. Plank: start 1:30 minutes, end 1:50 Side Plank: start 40 sec each side, end 41 Pushups: start 32 halfsies , end 40 halfsies (in 2 sets) Tricep dip: start 10 reps, end 15 repsCrow Pose practice: yes 2. Healthy Eating & Cardio Starting body fat % on 6/10 = 38.2%, at the end of the week the average was 38.0% Starting weight is 153.2, end of week was 153.8 My eating was so so, I was hungrier than normal. I am chalking it up to hormones. I am giving myself a green check for lowering my bf% and doing really well on my cardio. 3. Life goal: Set Weekly Goals and Expand Comfort Zone. Created my goal list on Sunday. Did not do my expand comfort zone goal for this week. I am going on to my next goal for this week, which is to network while I am at my conference.
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