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About thewrittennerd

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  1. As I gain momentum in some areas, I'm getting a better idea of what my weaknesses are. They're essentially all mental. For this challenge I'll be working mostly to keep up with my current workout and eating plans, BUT the twist now will be to try to shift the focus to: making my mentality about health a lot more positive. So to find my goals, I've got to know my weaknesses, right? What I want to work on is my wide array of Bad Ideas about health/fitness and body image. I've talked to several trusted friends and I'm finally coming to terms with having a lot of unhealthy ideas about my body and how to treat it. This challenge will be a lot of nebulous, strange goals with the idea to Be Less Problematic About Myself. I'm a fledgling aerialist! And starting my second session of aerial lessons as of the first Sunday of this challenge. So the first goal is: Outer Strength -aerial class 1x/week, bodyweight workout 2x/week -to shake things up here for this challenge, I want to try out one new exercise each week. Most will probably be gathered from the internet and be aerial- or acrobat-specific. Last week I learned a wall variation for practicing v-sits: this week will probably be a new trick on rings! I've discovered vimeo and may share aspects of my workouts for form-checks or just to give a more human voice to this internet persona :> For now, this is my instagram, this is my vimeo. Inner Strength -2 servings fruit/veg a day, no more than 3 outside-bought coffees/week, continue weaning off sugar with no more than 2 sugary things/day Shake It Off -bit of a mix here! I want to get my splits and work on my back bends, to help with my 'shapes' in aerials. I will work on flexibility for at least 10 mins for 3 days/week, OUTSIDE of my warm-up/cool-down mobility stretching. -work on hand balancing at least 3x/week, and my workouts CAN count toward this goal -unfollow people on sites like tumblr/instagram that make me negatively compare myself or perpetuate harmful (to me) ideas about diet/exercise. I'm already well on my way to this and it's helping! -stop focusing on the end-goal and enjoy the journey. I'm going to pick 3-5x/week when I start spiraling with negativity and either meditate or just practice redirecting my thoughts if meditating isn't an option. I'd like for this to be 'every time', but I know that just means I'll feel bad and guilty when I don't do it every time! This goal will probably be on my list for a long, long time to come... I have a LOT of bad reasons I'm as invested as I am in exercise and eating habits, and I want that to change! And mostly I just want to be able to fully enjoy my aerials classes without worrying that I haven't lost weight. I've gained a LOT of self-confidence and coordination and strength since joining up for my first-ever group class on January 10th. Every time I leave class, I can't wait to come back! I've found my Thing, definitely.
  2. so I was just browsing around to look for people to check in on, and what do I see at the top of this page but a White Stripes gif? Hello there new person! Spreading out movement is a really nice concept! I've noticed I tend to be very sedentary on days I'm not working out and was wondering how to implement change there. I'm intrigued at that 'movement point' system, did you come up with the idea of that yourself? Love it! And huzzah for growing things! I've killed everything except a golden pothos, but one of my roommates has been researching like mad to get an indoor garden going on to grow microgreens and herbs. It sounds like a really great investment, and perhaps added incentive to eat fresh veggies! And you can't really underestimate the impact of looking at fresh plants outside... Good luck with all this!
  3. Thank you! I saw you were going to try parkour, now THAT sounds really exciting. It's definitely something I'm interested in, but not something I see myself starting soon (to keep the focus on aerials). But yes, having a GOAL for my exercise makes all the difference! Now whenever I don't feel like working out I can usually convince myself by going "but I want to do cool things on silks!" haha. How was that first parkour class?! Followed you back, thank you! I'm glad everyone can tell I'm having a great time in those videos. xD It's even better in the real class with the instructor and all my fellow students! We're all slowly talking to each other more, it's nice... I'm gonna miss them after this last week! Are you enjoying silks, at least? I'm still having issues with doing the foot lock in the air, it's definitely hard to coordinate! You can do it. I've tried on and off for a while... But I'd given up and literally just started back on attempting handstands last week! I'm enjoying it, but I can also tell this is a skill that's going to take some time to get good at. Thank you! Also! I got a vimeo account so I can share my videos with you guys, because I think it's fun to see other people messing up but having a good time. xD I managed to get a tiny sequence of what I can do on the trapeze together. Taking videos actually really helped me self-correct, this was the 3rd attempt after I found a lot of stuff to try to make look nicer in resultant takes... Unsure how to embed, but here is the link. The back-bending part is 'bird's nest', and our instructor showed us how to do it while taking one leg off at a time, so I experimented on both sides. For the record, the bruises on the backs of my knees are hellish! Phew! Good thing it's so fun.
  4. Update! We just had class on Sunday and our 'usual' instructor from the past 5 classes is gone on a trip, so we had a substitute, and it was actually really great having a different perspective on everything! Our regular instructor (and the woman I have for my next set of 8 classes as well) is more of a silks person, but this sub is more of a lyra gal. We learned some new variations on what we already knew on the trapeze, how to jump up into a straddle on that and the lyra, and some completely new things on the lyra, which we otherwise hadn't touched yet as a class! (In my initial intro at a different gym, I'd used a lyra, but it's been almost a month and a half since that). It was incredibly fun! After using mostly silks for a while, the stability of the lyra and trapeze was really noticeable, and I kinda like the 'limitations' of it. From what I've felt so far, it feels like the silks needs more strength and coordination from me (between the two poles) but the lyra/trapeze require more contortion and pain tolerance, and...exactitude? (Less room for error when there's less apparatus!) I'm sure it's influenced by learning more basic things on the lyra/trapeze though. Definitely considering taking apparatus-specific classes for lyra and trapeze sometime now. I've signed up for an open practice tomorrow to keep reviewing everything. I feel like I'm starting to really 'get' Russian climbs and want to extend that to the regular climb, and doing a footlock in the air I had a great breakthrough about with this sub, too! I've got a little list of all the moves we've done so far to run through tomorrow morning, otherwise I know I'll get frazzled the second I touch a silk and forget everything, pff. How is everyone else doing? Anyone else taking classes, whether for aerials or something else? How long?
  5. Aha, I found it again! Hey there you commented on my challenge a few days ago and I'd read through yours with the intent to comment as well, but then I lost track of it (being on mobile can be treacherous!). I love the positivity in this challenge. As important as all those stats and tracking can be of things like exercise and eating habits, the bottom line of change is the personal aspects of it - whether or not you can mentally do so, and why. I think keeping track of trying to change your thinking for the better is a great spin on a lot of the challenges here, and I hope it gives you what you need to keep moving forward! ETA: after looking through your more recent posts again, I want to just add in that I'm one of those people who is 'heavier' number-wise than is deemed 'acceptable' for women my height, but am very happy with how I look! I'm only human, so I have my bad days, but I definitely feel stronger than ever before, and I really enjoy my body. The number is just a number, and it can't tell how strong my ligaments are or how happy I am to have come as far as I have. I'll go ahead and leave out exact numbers to minimize possible negative comparisons, but my BMI actually puts me in 'overweight'. And yet I feel fantastic. You can do it! Don't focus so much on the numbers that you lose track of the REAL benefit of getting healthier, which is feeling better!
  6. Good news all around! I signed up for the next round of aerials classes a few days ago. Since I drive in my roommate, who doesn't have a car, we have to find a time that fits both of us, and while I felt ready for this gym's "1B", she wanted to stay in "1A", which we just took. Which is fine! So we both signed up for that, and I figured I'd spend the next 8 weeks just really getting the hang of the fundamentals. : P Well, as it turns out, a 1B opened up at the same time as that 1A! Considering there's only two rooms in that gym, I'm psyched at this great smiling of fate! So now I'm officially leveling up for the next session, which starts March 6th. Two more classes of this one, and one of those is tomorrow! It's going by so fast! Crazy to think I've really only logged 7 hours on silks so far, considering how much I love it... And today marked the day of my first-ever free-standing handstand! I've been practicing kicking up against the wall since I managed it this week, and today I managed to lean away from the wall and balance for a little while! It had a really great feeling to it when I was standing there...couldn't quite get it back though, haha. Another great thing: my wife is officially hooked on Star Trek. Specifically TNG. Hopefully gonna binge-watch a little bit more with her tonight. Gotta balance the nerd and the fitness.
  7. I know the general rule of '8 weeks til you notice, 12 weeks til close friends notice, 16 weeks for everyone else', and experience tells me this is more or less the case too! I'm trying to focus on how I FEEL as opposed to look, to avoid feeling discouraged. (Especially since I'd sort of assumed I'd lose weight - I'm about 20 pounds heavier than I'm used to being, which only bothers me since I can SEE its accompanied by a loss of muscle mass. My first semester of college went well grade-wise but it took a toll on everything else! But now at least I know I'm doing all the right things, so I'm focusing on how I feel. I'd happily stay this weight or heavier if I thought I looked and felt healthy!) Thanks both of you! Yeah, for me the road to health is mostly blockaded with /mental/ hang ups, so I'm working on those while I work on my body! I'm feeling even better this week than last. I am DEFINITELY having fun in those videos! I was sore from working out the day prior, but it was great practicing and getting some bonding time with my wife, who acted as photographer, hah! Thanks to both of you for the encouragement! And yes, I added you back on IG, raptron!
  8. Haha thanks! I've always thought of myself as weak in the upper body, so it's crazy being in this beginner's silks class and having other students comment on how 'strong' I am! It's ALL a matter of perspective, which I'd always heard and tried to believe, but living it out is another thing entirely! I took photos of myself right as I started silks classes, actually, which was almost exactly a month ago now. I can't really see a difference between those and the mirror yet, but I think it's just a) a matter of time, and b ) I actually AM stronger, I can tell, regardless of what the photos might say anyway! I do need to keep better written track of my workouts though, that's a good point! While sharing on a different social media platform I use, I realized that instagram has an online portion to it! So, here's a link to my instagram for some videos and the full version of the photo from my userpic! (And obviously, anyone on IG, feel free to follow me! I'll happily follow back fellow assassins/rebels/whathaveyou on this journey!) ...I need to post more often over there. I'm bad with taking photos, pff! So far this week I've got one at-home workout left, to be completed tonight! Mostly I'm still excited because doing 'handstand progressions', like when you're just planking at an awkward angle from the wall, had been going horribly for me. But I kept seeing people kick up into them against the wall - the full handstand, just supported - and decided to hell with it, I've never been strong enough before, but I'll try it! And I did my first wall-assisted handstand on Wednesday, after abandoning doing the progressions for lack of progress! I'm so excited and can't wait to keep practicing it now! This is a whole new world. An upside-down world.
  9. That guy's eyes are so intense in that gif, holy cow! I think having a good life-week but a bad-challenge week is okay once in a while! Just don't be discouraged by it. Getting back on track shouldn't be too hard. I've read through this whole post. That gymnastics class sounds crazy but super useful for learning functional movements and strength! That's awesome that you found it! Was it something your university does, you said? (Also, I'm excited you're starting silks! My silks partner and I are considering trying out pole classes ourselves, too, so we may have another cross-over of interests! It'll be a few months before we have the money and time, but we may sign up for a 'pole 101' intro that an aerial gym nearby does periodically.)
  10. manarelle, fridelisan, and starsapart! thanks to all of you! I know it's been a while since I posted, so I'm just gonna recap as much as I can in here. slow and steady usually sees me getting frustrated/bored and quitting, but this time I've been more successful at convincing myself to stick with it. I'm finally starting to see/feel results, which is all I was REALLY frustrated about for the first 4-6 weeks of changing up my diet and exercise. Most of my issue has been the process of me working through some...negative ideas about my strength levels compared to others. I'm still in the process of some serious life changes to help get away from that bad thinking. (I had Some Questionable Comments made by well-meaning personal trainers recently, one of whom was currently orienting ME for a new job as a personal trainer (this isn't my first athletic rodeo, I just always still consider myself a beginner haha) and had a bit of a breakdown for about three weeks in mid-January/early February. I've since quit that personal trainer job and talked out a lot of my issues with some close friends and am feeling way, way healthier about this whole thing.) It's crazy the societal quirks people have about the perception of exercise and physique! I'm still trying to leave that stuff behind me, because it's not gonna help me reach my goals. I wish it was always as easy as saying 'what they think doesn't matter', but for NOW, at least, that's how I feel! I'm on an upswing. My last two at-home workouts were completed with no panicking, which is the first time in over a month I've gotten through one without immense amounts of dread, huzzah! Aerial classes are going amazingly still, and I got to open practice on Monday. I'm definitely not going to practice the day after class again anytime soon though, hah! Some skills I've acquired/am working on so far, with hyperlinks in the text since names differ and so non-aerialists can see: -'basic' climbing, I'm doing well with! I have no issue with the basics. I want to start working on making it more efficient and smoother - pulling my legs up higher each time, basically, and not unraveling the silk with every other step, pff! -Russian climbs, I do not understand at all! I can get the initial step-up but can't climb this way, yet. Gonna work on this one more. -candy cane was my BANE the first time we did it - it was the first move I absolutely didn't like and had a hard time doing, I'd never been so sore after a class as I was after my first attempt! we had another class practicing it, and I looked up videos for more tips and then tried in open practice, and I had a lot of 'aha!' moments here. I can spin okay-ish on the way out, it's messy but a lot of fun. (if people like videos of amateurs messing up, I have footage I can upload, hah!) -rebecca's split I love, although I'm very messy and not too flexible! we were taught to keep the free leg bent, as in this photo. Gazelle (with a knot/on a sling) into hip key, and then into my first drop! I did a drop on each side in the sling, from a hip key (bottom leg bent, fall backwards, catch yourself with that bent knee). I can also get into a basic version of a straddle back, if I'm standing on the ground so I can jump (no foot locks for pretty draping yet!). We've done a little bit of mounting practice with the trapeze as well - I loved dead man's hang! (Unfortunately, that name gives me VERY different images than what we did...we have a terminology issue here!) Birds nest was also surprisingly satisfying to hang in, despite being an easy move! I did not anticipate enjoying the trapeze so much! I prefer silks, but the trapeze has been fun for the few moves we learned with it. Even if it broke my toe on day one. We've done others, but these stand out for me right now! I have pics and videos that I could share if people are interested. (Can I upload images directly to the site? I was gonna try but I can't see anything for that... I guess I don't mind uploading to tinypic though, I'm not too concerned about that!)
  11. Our protagonist: a 24 year-old massage therapist and full-time student. She's never really done something like this before - organized sport? Not since middle school! But she seems to have found a new hobby... The prologue we've finished: she started aerial classes 5 weeks ago with a roommate, and is developing her love for this outlet. This chapter: continuing to gain skills with silks. Continuing to gain strength outside of classes, to progress further during aerial sessions. Fuel the body that's taking her on this journey. Juggle all this with the return of a full semester of classes. The solid goals: a. aerial class 1x/week, full body workout 2x/week, *try out open practice 1x if able I've got 3 more lessons left in this session, and then will need to purchase another! so this month will see me finishing up that, and continuing to develop myself outside of class. Money-willing, I also want to get to the studio to practice specific skills at least once during this challenge! But bodyweight workouts at home are free, so I can definitely do those. c: b. 2 servings of fruit/veg a day. Having one as my goal went well last challenge! Now to increase that consistency. To do so will require a lot of meal planning, as Tuesdays and Thursdays I need to bring lunch AND dinner with me to campus (I commute a far distance). Lots of mini-mini-goals to make this one possible! c. No more than 2 sugary snacks/day! This might sound high for a goal, but trust me, I eat a LOT of junk food right now, even alongside my healthy choices. Increasing fruit & veggies will help push them out, but I'm also going to need to focus on turning aside the bad choices as well! Mini-goal of 'no more than 3 outside-bought coffees/week' as well, which may very well be the hardest part of this challenge for me. As we can see, this is largely the same as my last challenge in the rebel forum! As I join the Assassins Guild, I'm gonna focus on increasing my strengths gradually, and shedding my bad habits just as consistently. Slow and steady! I know too great of a change will just result in me cracking under the added pressure of school and binge-eating junk, and talking myself out of workouts. Honestly, the easiest part of this by far will be the silks classes! They're giving me the motivation to do everything else. I want to get better at silks - everything else will follow.
  12. "angry diaper" sums it up VERY WELL, haha! Love it. It's funny how the terms are different everywhere. To wrap up this challenge for me! I definitely succeeded for the vegetable one, and the one about aerial classes/working out. Buuuuut I did not do well for getting to bed on time! I think based on the numbers I'd give myself a B for this one. Definitely passed, but could've done better! I am so glad I tried out aerial silks. And I'm even happier that I'm going to a gym with a structured class/levels system. I can already tell that feeling I'm making progress, with such an obvious system in place, is going to be really motivating for me. And going with a friend matters more than I thought it would! As supportive as my wife is of this, it's so nice having someone SHARE my hobby with me! I've never had a workout buddy before, ever, and it makes more of a difference than I'd even hoped for. I just had my 3rd class at the new gym and I'm getting to know the other people in the class as well, and learning more of what to predict with this instructor, and just. Ahh. Such a nice feeling all around. C: School's started back up for me, so now the balancing act begins, but I feel a lot better about this right now! Now to go prep for the next challenge, which I'll finally have earned the right to put in the Assassins forum. \o/ Thank you so much to everyone who commented here! Having a community to talk to about this set of changes has been really great.
  13. Kicked the trapeze itself! I heard/felt it make an awful noise and it hurt like hell, but I just sorta played it off and tried again til I got the mount down. Once I got off the trapeze I could see the two toes I hit were white, compared to the rest of my foot which was flushed. Gradually I watched them turn purple, and the pain only slightly lessened, which is when I asked if there were any ice packs. Only one was broken, at least the other was just bruised! I got it checked at an urgent care center about 24 hours later, which I count as a personal win for me - I was really hesitant to do so, just because I was TERRIFIED I was going to be fine, and making a scene about nothing. Getting the avulsion fracture diagnosis was actually a relief! (I used to really not be taken seriously about medical issues as a child, and I've had a really weird way of processing needing to go to a doctor since... I've walked on probably-sprained ankles, had cavities ignored til I got abscesses, and thrown up at school/parties/etc (after not being allowed to stay home when I reported feeling ill) more than I could count. I've had to train myself how to listen to my body and get help when I need it, so this was a big deal for me!) I'm glad it didn't make me scared to keep going to classes, though. c: I think what's helping me is that even though I would say - compared to very fit people that I see online or in class - that I'm not that strong, the truth is that I'm far from a beginner to strength training. I LOVED getting into the hip key, I'm sure it wasn't pretty but it was really fun. Straddling without the knot was hard, and one of the last things we did, so even harder since I was tired. Lots of jumping and my legs just sort of flailing uselessly without flipping over, so I was really happy when I managed to get upside down, cross it over behind my back and swing upwards, even if I stepped right out of it/landed on the ground as soon as I tried to get it to hold me up in the air (does everyone call that part 'diaper man'? hah!). I'm sure I'll hit a sudden wall where my strength advantage doesn't exist anymore, and I'll progress slower, but right now I'll take what I can get. c: It is really interesting hearing where others were at/are at with their own aerial experiences! Even though I'm trying not to compare myself to others too much and just enjoy it for what it is - and it's definitely easy to enjoy. C: I'm loving it at the new gym! And more of a sense of accomplishment for me, with leveled classes. (Good point! Everything there DOES look much more clean and organized, and hopefully safe! Their ceiling is also a LOT higher, which makes it more fun to climb the silks! At the other gym I got to the ceiling on the first day...since the ceiling was maybe 15 feet up. Maybe. This other gym is huuuugely tall! I haven't gotten to the ceiling yet, I'm actually unsure if we're supposed to...I may ask next time!) Again, thanks for checking in and commenting. It's nice to have somewhere to report all this to. : )
  14. Now that I know what the hammock is, I know we've got a few set-ups of that in our gym! In fact the teacher had two of us use them today while practicing something (superman I believe). Sorry I disappeared for a little while there! I started class last Tuesday and have been really working to make sure everything else stays as-planned for my goals. Aaaaand aerials plans changed a bit! For the better though I've joined a more structured gym right away, rather than waiting! It's a 7-week session, just had week 2's class today! AND one of my roommates joined with me, and we're going together. It's great having someone with me! And I like the idea of having an organized class system over here. It's a little further, but I'm so happy with this instructor and the other people in my class. But! I actually broke my toe at the first session in the new gym, last Sunday. I was mounting a trapeze (it's a mixed aerials class, although we do mostly silks by far) and misunderstood the instructor about the order of what we were doing, so my legs weren't bent enough, and I used a lot of momentum, because I'm definitely eagerly throwing myself into everything, haha. Second toe on the right foot, the most distal phalanx - I have the x-ray pics somewhere on a CD the nurse practitioner gave me, but I'll have to look for it to share. Nurse recommended staying off trapeze, but I disagree. But I AM laying off running completely, I'm doing bodyweight workouts with modifications as needed, and I'm going to start using the stationary bikes at my gym-gym instead of running. It's not too bad! A bit of bone chipped off, essentially (avulsion fracture!), but it's minimally displaced so I just tape it to the one next to it. Definitely not scared away from anything, in fact I'm mostly just happy I got a dumb-but-healable injury like a broken toe, and not a sprained ankle. (But I am amused that I've been running for two years, no injuries, and two classes into aerials, I broke the first bone I've ever broken. Hah!) But I love this class! Today we did a gazelle into a hip key, and I LOVED that! We also did candy cane, which I loved a bit less. And I did my first straddle/double crochet without the knot! By the time I swung up into the 'diaper' thing though, I basically stepped right through onto the ground, because it didn't stay tight enough without the knot. I'm sure I'll get it with practice though. Thanks for checking in on me, guys! I'm getting so much out of this class. It's great motivation to work out, outside of the classes! Now I want to be stronger and more flexible so I can do more up in the air.
  15. Oh gosh, it's surprising both of you with the air footlock! I'm pretty pleased with myself then, haha. I think part of my ability to get it at all might have been that the instructor didn't give any indication that it was hard (well, she said it was, but she also clearly thought I could get it down!) and so I didn't psych myself out at all! I also took 3 weeks to do bodyweight workouts at home before signing up for classes, which I think really helped. I'm starting from nothing as far as gymnastic ability, but I'm at least a few levels in on strength! Thanks for all the encouragement : ) What I could NOT do, however, was jump up into a straddle/inverted straddle (something like this on a knot, but I didn't hold the two pieces together, just let myself hang) until she lowered the knot to just about my waist. I assume that's going to take a combination of core and leg strength to leap up into from the ground! Hearing that your gym-mates are a community of friends in and of themselves is actually really nice to hear! I hope I'll get that as time goes on. I could use more in-person places where I get to talk to people outside of work. It'd be a really great extra. And I suppose that's even more encouragement to pick one gym and stick with it for as long as possible! As for the challenge: bedtime is still a huge problem for my self-control. I have to get it together! I'm reminding myself of how hard it is to get out of bed on time in the mornings, and that that would be solved if I was sleeping earlier. The vegetables are going great still! I think next challenge I'm going to keep it but increase it to two servings of fruit/veg a day to keep the streak going. c: And I skipped my workout proper yesterday, because I just was not prepared for how sore I was going to be after silks for the first time! (My biceps still cringe when I massage them, haha, and my legs are sore in all sorts of weird places when I get up after sitting for longer than a couple minutes.) In retrospect, if that happens again, I think I should do the warm-up and then just go through what I CAN of it, and then stretch. I felt like it would be useless to do the workout if I couldn't do it to my full strength, but that's just silly! So I'll keep that in mind for later. Tomorrow, though, I've got a session scheduled with a personal trainer (at a regular gym, not the aerial one) ! I'm looking forward to some one-on-one feedback and to see how they handle the session. And it'll make my workout more interesting, because I won't know what's going to happen!
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