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About JediNickD

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  • Birthday 11/19/1980


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    Cecil County, MD


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  1. I maintained the 146.2 lbs through the weekend, but popcorn during Ant-man and the Wasp was a mistake. A bloated 149.0 lbs this morning. Can't wait to drop anchor this morning. Anyway, enough being gross... Last night, I did get a nice walk in with the family. I'm not sure what triggered it, but everyone was jonesing for playing Pokemon Go, so we drove to town and walked the promenade. It was nice and buggy. We saw some pretty amazing spiders and webs around all the light fixtures. I'm certain my kids won't want to walk down there at night for a while, especially after seeing the 2 inch beetle. Oh, and we caught plenty of new Pokemon as most of us hadn't played for a few months to a year. I might keep it installed and play a bit again. I could use the walking and running anyway. I've been good about my daily walks, but it is mostly just the minimum. I can do better and have done better. Pokemon Go has been a helpful tool before, why not again? Karate practice this morning after stretching and therapy. I did study hall and spar on Saturday. Fun and sweaty classes. As the instructors prepare for an Olympic Tae Kwon Do hopeful and instructor visiting in two weeks, spar class continues its focus on point spar. I had two very competitive matches. The first match come down to the last point with us trading point for point including two rounds which were like chess matches. The second was a better challenge to force me to adapt quickly. She was a quick bull and beat me three rounds to one. I need to get faster and smarter with my counters. Especially, how I move and "block" kicks. I tend to use my hands to parry or bring a leg up to block, then attempt a counter. It has worked well against some, but a fast opponent does not leave an opening for the counter, and a stronger one will hurt my hands or leg. I need to see the kick and move out of the way, then strike. Faster and lighter feet is what I need to train.
  2. JediNickD

    Gryffindor Common Room

    I'll be our seeker. Core reps start tomorrow!
  3. JediNickD

    [SymphonicDan] at the Oxford Monastery [Level 25]

    Meditation is a fickle thing. I was skeptical of meditation for a long time. Until you do it consistently, you won't really know if it is for you or how you can use it for you benefit. I'm not one to sit with my legs crossed and Ohmm (which is what my first instructors expected me to do). Instead, over a few years and instructors/books, I developed what works for me. I take 10 to 15 minutes every day to find a comfortable and distraction-free place to rest in a with eyes closed and focus on my breathing, maybe with a chant to give my breathing a rhythym. It is extremely therapeutic to quiet all the noise and reset the mind. When you come back to life, it easier to tune out noise and focus my attention. Typically, I use this moment of calm to organize my priorities for the next XX time block. I have played some of my best games (rugby, football, video game) after meditating like this. Focusing on the moment is more of a mindset than a meditation technique. You can use meditation to help resolve mental barriers like worries, fears, doubts, or any other reason why your mind is wondering off. In turn, this will help focus on the present moment. There could also be chemical imbalance and physical deficiency which is effecting your focus (my spine misalignment was causing pain which was distracting my focus). But feeling more present is actually an active choice which you have to mentally make to be more in tune with the present. Pay close attention to the difference in your mind wondering when you are talking to someone you genuinely care about and make a priority in your life, and when you are talking to a random stranger. Our personal priorities, conscious and sub-conscious, make a huge difference in how we behave. If you actively choose to make the present your focus, to make whatever is in front of you your priority, and extinguish all thoughts elsewhere, then you will get there. A good starting block for you may be to compare you thoughts for when you are doing a hand stand to other times. If you lose focus, then you fall over. If you think about sitting at a picnic table with the same kind of focus, then you'd sit there patiently observing the world around you, tasting each drop of the drink, seeing the wood grain in the picnic table for its natural beauty, etc, all while thinking that if you lose focus on the present moment, you would fall off the bench. This is my personal experience. Your's could be very different, but I decided to share, because I see a lot similarity in what you want out of it and what I have gotten out of it. The important thing I feel, for developing any new skill, is to commit to it.
  4. 146.2 lbs this morning. New low. Keepin' it going! VBS ended last night and the wife and kids come home tonight, so after VBS, I went out to celebrate a successful week of influencing kids lives to understanding and enjoying science with a bit of theology sprinkled nearby and my last night of freedom for a while. I went to the karaoke bar and belted out a few tunes. One of my friends came and we tried a duet. She was looking for a song people in the bar would pay attention to (a bit narcissistic but that is her) and was thinking "Let It Go" from Frozen, but wasn't into it. I suggested "Love is an Open Door" because I know it really well. Apparently, I only know it well if I sing every line, because when the lyrics for only Anna showed, then a BLANK SCREEN for the Hans lyrics... I was stunned and could not find my place. It was awkward and terrible. I can't believe the DJ didn't stop and try to fix it. My friend lost all composure and couldn't stop laughing. It was like nothing I've ever known before... at least I hit my door.
  5. JediNickD

    Gryffindor Common Room

    Right, when I take my daily 30 min walk, I pay close attention to posture, stride, and footfall to help with my chiropractic adjustments, but also to improvement stealth for karate practice. Gotta have quiet feet!
  6. 147.6 lbs this morning. I did karate practice this morning by reviewing all my katas looking for anything which needs work. I found a few spots where I mixing up the different katas such as throwing an out-to-in block where I should be punching or high blocking. I also made sure I was landing in the correct stance each move. My balance in that respect is improving nicely. I wrapped up the session hitting the bag with one of my favorite combos with a bit of customization. The combo is skip in double round house kick, back fist, reverse hand punch. I end the combo with a front hand ridge hand strike, which I can follow with sliding my front leg to the side to reset the combo for my other side. I'm in too close for a skip in or a double, or the angle might not be right for a round house, so I varied it with an out-to-in kick, but the general idea is that I hit the bag on one front from one angle, then shift to hit another front at a different angle, which is an area I struggle with in spar. I tend to strike and retreat allowing my opponent an opportunity to gather and strike. With this combo, I built a really quick rhythm and movement to deliver a continuous attack with less opportunity for counter attack. I plan to try it out at Spar Class on Saturday.
  7. JediNickD

    Nerdwarts: Summer Camp

    I caught the Golden Snitch! How many points is that? I changed my History of Magic to Karate Practice. I didn't know it was physical only until I read all the comments. No worries.
  8. JediNickD

    Gryffindor Common Room

    Just walking is great exercise, but you can also make walking more challenging by doing a meditative walk, focusing on your balance or posture while walking, or working on a more challenging pace each walk. Just some thoughts.
  9. JediNickD

    Gryffindor Common Room

    I re-read the rules to make sure I am putting in my score right. Only the physical training counts, so I am taking my "Jedi Training" out. Instead, I'll be splitting my Karate Practice and Stretching/Flexibility Training into History of Magic and Transfiguration, respectively.
  10. JediNickD

    Gryffindor Common Room

    In the 90s, I can't remember what cable station it was, but there was a televised roller derby league, which I had a blast watching. It was like WWE meets Rugby on skates. Complete craziness. Good Luck!
  11. 146.4 lbs this morning for a new low! Soccer juggling, passing, shooting, and goalkeeping drills after some stretching, push ups, sit ups, and burpees. VBS is going great. The science experiments have gone perfect. Tonight it gets a little more complicated with the "egg sucking" experiment. It's worked, but not like the videos. We'll see.
  12. JediNickD

    Gryffindor Common Room

    The Sorting Hat dropped me exactly where I thought... Gryffindor! Huzzah! I choose Charms ( Soccer, Football, Rugby, Basketball, Hockey, Racquet Ball, Quidditch), Transfiguration ( Karate Practice and Stretching/Flexibility Training), and History of Magic ( Jedi Training). I decided to have two classes directly related to my main challenge with Karate, Stretching, and Jedi Training. The third class (Charms) I selected to challenge myself to improve outside my normal scope, but I had to make it something fun! For a while I had taken a break from any sports because of my back issues. I'm healed up now and easing back into my cardio training. I found out in Karate Spar class last weekend, that my lungs and muscles do not have much stamina. My typical dose of running and biking is not the endurance training I need for Spar. So to make the endurance training I do need fun, and since my back is better, I'll be bring back sports training with a focus on intensity to build up my stamina so I can outlast my opponents in Spar class. In August, at Epic Nerd Camp, I'll be playing for Gryffindor in the Quidditch Epic Nerd House Cup, but I've never played! I'll have to learn and train if I want to play well! For Gryffindor!
  13. 147.6 lbs this morning. Looking at my Weight Chart from last year, I am almost 10 lbs lighter from last summer. Pretty awesome. This is why I weight myself daily. Without those data points, I could not accurately look back and see my progress. When looking at my daily weight, there will be fluctuations with some days being more depressing than others, but each one is a speck on the grand scale. Do not let them steal your motivation! Maintain the habits and hope. Keep the dream alive by living it every day. You are a work in progress where your work will show progress!
  14. Welcome back for another episode of The Exciting Adventures of JediNickD! It was a long time ago in a galaxy far, far away that I joined this site and started my first challenge.. World 1 was my first extended stay through 22 challenges. I took a hiatus from NF and came back with a new direction for my goals where I warped to World 2, which I defeated in a Boss Fight slaying some mighty big goals. In World 3, I continue to develop my fitness, getting my body in the best shape of my life, even with the Degenerative Disc Disease, Arthritis, Disc Fissures, and more. Through physical therapy exercises and karate, I have maintained my core and back muscles to ease the pressure off my spine, but in the end I defeated World 3 by transforming my life into a new form. With chiropractic care for my spine, hitting the high ranks at karate, starting the new Toastmasters program called Pathways, and working to complete my Novice training at IJRS, World 4 feels like something new everyday. I just keep on L-I-V-I-N, fight the good (and healthy) fight, and level up my life! Challenge Lesson: " I need someone to show me my place in all of this." - Rey, Star Wars Episode VIII: The Last Jedi {I avoided spoilers this time!} Whenever I take on something new, I look to a role model, mentor, or teacher to help me get started. I usually start with a generalized goal or desire in mind, but through experience and outside help, I mold it into something more finite. On my own, it can be difficult to see the end of the journey. The destination may look different than I expect, or I may be making inaccurate assumptions, or I may be focusing on the wrong descriptive factors of the destination to understand what it is. A mentor, role model, or teacher can help see that destination through the correct perspective and guide to form relevant and achievable goals to get there. The key is to have someone who has done it before. Steve Kamb has written previously about finding a mentor or coach who has done the thing you want to accomplish. I see it in the gym with guys who want to compete in body building linking up with trainers who have competed. At Karate, the instructors recognize struggles in the students which they previously experiences and go to help those students one-on-one. At Toastmasters, I work hard to be that person for all the newcomers to the clubs. For some of my projects, I am doing too much on my own. I have some role models I am looking to emulate things which they do or have done, but I think I need to actually reach out to people and get that perspective on my project struggles to improve and get through some hurdles. My biggest issue with these projects is prioritization, which will never change. They are leisure time activities, which is limited. If I want to be successful, then I need to change something. Having someone to help me find my place is the answer. My Main Quest and Mission: My mission is to be the best Jedi I can be. My main quest is always to enhance my overall health, fitness, and knowledge to be prepared for whatever challenges life could throw at me. As a Jedi, I need to be able to help people, whether that is a life threatening situation or just a charitable one. There is no boss level in Jedi training, there is only tomorrow. World 4 Level 1 Challenge: FITNESS: Cardio: Speed and Stamina - 240 min total, 60 weekly. STA +1 Walking: Fortify the Spine - 600 min total, 150 weekly STR +1 Exercise: Lifting and Bodyweight - 240 min total, 60 weekly. STR +1 Flexibility: Stretching and Physical Therapy - 560 min total, 140 weekly. DEX +1 Karate: Training and Practice - 600 min total, 150 weekly. DEX +1, STA +1 DIET: Weight Control - Track weight. Complete measurements before or during Week 1 and again during or after Week 4. Watch portions and make healthy choices for 24 of 28 days. Track lunch portions. Track "fasting" after dinner nightly. CON +3 LIFE: Get Stuff Done - Complete 220 Hours of various Tasks or Projects, with at least 55 hours each week. Tasks and Projects are the following areas (goal hours for challenge): Toastmasters Communication Practice (4) Leadership Practice (8) Speech and Training Development (2) Jedi Training Padawan Training and Mentoring Others (10) Reading and Writing (14) Meditation and Reflection (7) Completing IJRS Lessons (8) Church and Charity Work (10) Personal Projects (12) Chores and Maintenance Dishes (10) Laundry (8) Cleaning/Dusting/Vacuuming/Trash/Other (20) Yard Work (4) Animal Care (32) Home Renovation and Auto Maintenance (8) Happiness Self Preservation (30) [includes hot tub, doctor and dentist visits, video games, or anything else I do just for my own sanity or health] Family Activities (30) Adventuring (8) WIS +3, CHA +3 INCENTIVES! Working hard for CASH! ($250.50 carried over) REWARD: For each week in which I complete 60 or more hours of Tasks or Projects, I will put aside $10 to spend how I see fit. CONSEQUENCE: For any week where I complete less than 55 hours, I will give up $10 of saved cash. REWARD: $5 for each Personal Project hour (Epic Nerd Camp, Extra Life, Jedi website, VHS-to-DVD conversion project, etc) CONSEQUENCE : Lose $10 for each week without a Personal Project hour. REWARD: $10 for each completed IJRS lesson. CONSEQUENCE: Lose $5 for each week without completing an IJRS lesson. REWARD: $1 for each night of fasting after dinner. Fruits and veggies allowed in small quantities, but no dessert or snacking. CONSEQUENCE: Lose $2 for each day without fasting. REWARD: $1 for each day with a small, healthy lunch. CONSEQUENCE: Lose $2 for each day without a small, healthy lunch. REWARD: $1 for each morning or night of brushing and flossing. $0 for just brushing. CONSEQUENCE: Lose $1 for each morning or night I forget to floss. Lose $2 for NOT flossing for the full day. BONUSES: Life: $1 for each hour working on Jedi Training (mentoring, reading/writing, charity, meditation, IJRS lessons). $2 for healthy grocery shopping $2 for healthy meal prep $2 for each Home Renovation and Auto Maintenance task. Workout: $2 for each cardio session over 25 min $10 for doubling any weekly minimum PUNISHMENT: Lose $10 each day with weight above 151.5 lbs. Lose $5 for eating more than 2 slices of pizza in any meal. Lose $5 for each morning not weighing in.