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Ann of Owlshire

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About Ann of Owlshire

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    Keeper of the Flame
  • Birthday 08/31/1979

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  1. Week 0 Update: Reach Mordor 28.5/20 miles. Hurrah! Find the Entwives 4/5 days gardening advance actions taken. I’m reconsidering how I approach this one, having it by 5 advancing actions rather than 5 days, because on work days that’s just not happening very much (daily hen care and garden maintenance takes up my free time), but on weekends I do a lot that only counts as one checkmark. So we’ll see how it goes… Chickens at my feet while I worked on fencing over the weekend…
  2. You always have such excellent themes. Good luck on your challenge!
  3. [Preamble] Welcome to Owlshire, a beautiful woodland property in the Forest of Dean, England. I’m a 42 year old American woman living here with my British husband (Mr) and pre-school son (Enting). I work in gamedev and when I’m not doing that, I’m tending to my garden, doing needlework of some sort, writing, playing games (of various sorts), and exploring our local woodlands. The big Owlshire news for this challenge is that we have chickens. On the last day of the last challenge, we adopted 6 ex-commercial hens from a rescue organization. They are currently recuperating, re-feathering, and learning what it is to be outside (they have a pop-hole into a large grassy hillside run that you can’t see in these photos). [Goals] Reach Mordor Finally finish my (tracked) journey to Mordor. I’m 773 miles away! I’ve been wanting to complete this challenge since the early 00s (when it was called the Eowyn Challenge), and I’m sure I’ve been “there and back again” several times over, but I’ve never managed to track the whole thing. I want to finish my walking route to Mordor by November 2022. My goal for this challenge is to do more than 20 miles each week (this includes any movement my Fitbit tracks), as that seems to be my “default” without extra effort. Find the Entwives It’s the spring, and… well, there’s always a lot to do at Owlshire, but this is the time of sowing seeds and hens, and I want to throw myself into that. At least 5 days a week, I want to do something that moves gardening/related activities forward. For this purpose, basic maintenance doesn’t count (such as daily hen care or watering the garden). Steps forward (such as creating a new gardening bed, sowing new seeds, increasing the defenses of Chook Castle) will count. I will do this at my discretion, and a project (such as creating a garden bed) doesn’t have to be completed that day to count as activity for that day. Some of these are big tasks that must be done in small steps. A Hobbit in Attitude, not in Width I want to continue to reduce my BMI/weight. This will be done with increased activity and continuing to watch my portion sizes/limited snacking. I’m currently at 22.5 BMI, and I will count this goal successful if my BMI or weight is less than it was at the start of the challenge. Tracking will be done with a minimum of weekly updates, and of course will include plenty of Owlshire photospam. [Challenges] It’s likely that my husband will begin commuting part of the week to his workplace (after being remote the last 2 years) and I’ll be regularly solo-parenting which will require some routine adjustments. Seriously, can we get through one challenge without a nasty cold (or, like last challenge, Covid) derailing the household for 1-2 weeks? Admin note: I always start on Week 0, and I track from Monday-Sunday.
  4. Did I seriously not update the entire challenge?! Up to Week 4 I did 69.5 miles total. I seem to average about 20 miles a week if I don’t make a particular effort, and Week 4 was a particular downer at 11 miles because my son accidentally (and mostly asymptomatically) brought an unwelcome visitor home from the nursery school - Covid-19 - so we were down ill and are still in the process of recovering. I don’t expect Week 5 to be a knock-out week for mileage. Driving practice went well until Covid, but we’ll pick that back up hopefully by this weekend. 794.7 miles to Mordor…
  5. Over the summer, a friend showed me how to make (real, with just starter) sourdough in our bread machine. And it works and it’s tasty, but I miss those beautiful looking loaves! I’d say I was jealous of your sun in the cold, wet winter days we’re having right now, but ick, no. Too much.
  6. Week 0 Update Day Mileage PAI Monday 3.1 69 Tuesday 4 63 Wednesday 4.1 72 Thursday 3.7 73 Friday 3.6 70 Saturday 2.45 64 Sunday 3.85 61 Total 24.8 864 miles remaining… Did my minimum 2 practice drives. Off to a good start!
  7. Are late night or early morning workouts a possibility to try to avoid the peak heat?
  8. Challenge addendum: So yesterday I was looking at the NHS healthy weight calculator because I’m—to my surprise—close to my next weight loss milestone (which is nearly as low as any post-university weight in my adult life) and was considering if I should be thinking about a maintenance plan or see how long my current methodology keeps me losing. Apparently I still skew “medium-high” area of healthy weight for my sex/age/size/race, and because I’m mixed (Asian) race, a 23 BMI puts me at higher risk for Type 2 Diabetes than caucasian folks. 25 is where I was when I first decided to slim down last year (so while it was mostly vanity, I’m glad I did it!), and now I’m at 22.8, and I think I’d like more breathing room than that. So I think I’m going to keep trying to go down a bit for BMI purposes. And I know BMI is not perfect, but as we just said about PAI above, most of these things are dumpster fires, and I don’t fall into any of the regular categories that skew an accurate BMI so I feel it’s fine to work with as a measurement. I also don’t like talking about my weight in lbs/kg because I’m 5 foot tall (and Asian) which means my “overweight” numbers are often an average caucasian woman’s “underweight” numbers and I’ve been harassed on weight loss forums too much over the years—and although that’s never happened on NF, I’m still a bit scarred by it. BMI is a number I can talk about and not feel like I’m going to get yelled at. Anyway, being pithy I’m going to update my challenge to basically - More PAI, Less BMI XD
  9. You can do this! Mr is prone to high blood pressure, and we eat basically zero salt in the house to keep him off additional medication. We don’t add salt to food or recipes even when called for (except for baking when it’s needed for Chemistry, and then I have experimented with the minimum amount that can be used, and the occasional treat of home-popped popcorn), and we don’t eat a lot of processed food or ready meals because of salt/sodium. When we have guests for meals, we warn them of this and hand them the salt shaker XD But we’re just used to the no/low salt taste of things now, and use other herbs and spices for added flavor. The PAI app is a bit flakey, and it logs me out like every which is obnoxious. But it’s still less faff than tracking stuff manually!
  10. It takes a few days to build up cumulative points, and then you have points carrying over for several days before they drop off (and have hopefully been replaced by more current activity or your score goes off a cliff).
  11. Yes—or at least it’s synced to my old Fitbit Alta. @oromendur is the resident PAI expert, and may have more advice.
  12. A few months ago, I bought a long vintage wool tweed skirt online for £5 that, when it arrived (despite what the listing measurements had said), was sadly too small in the waist. Waaaaay too small. Smaller than I thought I would be physically able to fit into no matter how much (healthy) weight I lost. I was sad. But it was cheap, and the fabric was gorgeous so I stuffed it away thinking that when we found a good person/place in the area for alterations I’d see if they could maybe chop some of the top off and add a new zip for a bit of breathing room. (Or whatever it is they would have done, sewing is not my forte.) Since that time, I’ve lost some weight and so when I came across the skirt in my wardrobe this morning I wondered “Hm. Maybe I’ve closed the gap a bit? Dear readers, I have closed the gap. I have closed the gap ENTIRELY. I now fit into the skirt I didn’t think I’d ever be capable of fitting into. And I’m feeling pretty proud.
  13. Villages and small town centres here don’t have much in the way of big car parks or driveways, so parallel/street parking is pretty much the norm.
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