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  1. This is the bookend to my first UK challenge. On August 31, I repatriate. For now. (Don't worry, U.S., I love you too.) Last challenge I tried to focus on cutting. It started off well, but went “wonky†(technical term borrowed from Miss Marissa ) about half-way through. Now I just want to finish my MSc strong and make sure I don’t burn out before starting my PhD. This is the laundry list of what needs to happen: 1) Air-tight nutrition. Just. Keep. Tracking. All. The. Food. [+ 1 STR]Completely cut out dairy and sugar (i.e., remove my casein protein powder, occasional goat cheese, and occasional chocolate). Basically my diet will look like a Whole30 plus white rice and my Warrior Blend protein powder (which is now the natural version, so no stevia or cocoa). [+ 1 CON]Elimination diet to test for egg intolerance. I’d like to do a more complete elimination diet, but wouldn’t have time to methodically reintroduce the removed foods before travelling. Eggs, however, should be simple to remove and test. [+ 1 WIS]2) Be kind to my adrenal glands. Screen curfew for non-work activities (Facebook, NF, etc.) at 8:15 pm and work activities at 9 pm (preferably earlier). Netflix/Hulu/BBCiPlayer/etc. until 9 pm ok on the weekends. [+ 1 CON]If I wake up at too-early-o-clock, eat some healthy protein and fat and try to go back to sleep. [+ 1 CON]Meditate at least four days/week. [+ 1 WIS]At least one half hour yoga session/week (preferably two) [+ 1 DEX]No caffeine (I’ll allow myself a discretionary two cups of tea during and post travel if sans caffeine survival is an issue) [+ 1 STA]Don’t stress about goal #3 (I’m impatient—I want answers now!—and I haven’t had great experiences with doctors) [+ 1 CHA]3) Time to find a good doctor. I was diagnosed with PCOS back in 2009. I found doctors… unhelpful… so the past couple of years I’ve been managing it pretty well on my own through proper nutrition, exercise, and supplements. However, I’m REALLY sensitive to any type of stress (lack of sleep, calorie deficit, travelling…) which isn’t good when I’m about to start an intense PhD program. Being more resilient would be nice. It would also be great to get some sort of quantitative feedback (e.g., hormone levels) on how I’m doing—I haven’t had any tests since my diagnosis (and, looking back, those weren’t exactly thorough). I’d also like help figuring out food sensitivities and any vitamin/mineral deficiencies so I can further tailor my diet and supplements. Towards that end: Try to get a more thorough blood test from my current GP. Go to the appointment prepared to advocate for my health (i.e., print off half of PubMed). [+ 1 CHA]Find a naturopath close to my next home. Schedule an appointment. [+ 1 CON]Make an appointment with the student health center at my next university, with the goal of getting a referral to an endocrinologist. [+ 1 CON]Side Quests: Floss 6+ days/week. Seriously. [+ 1 CON]Practice handstands 2+ days/week [+ 1 DEX] Life Quest: all the stuff I need to do before leaving (check off 3+ every week so I’m not stressed during the last week of August) [+ 1 STA]: Tl;dr: 1) Air-tight nutrition. Track all the food [+ 1 STR]No dairy, no sugar [+ 1 CON]Elimination diet: eggs [+ 1 WIS]2) Be kind to my adrenal glands. Screen curfew (8:15/9 pm non-work/work) [+ 1 CON]Try to go back to sleep if I wake up too early [+ 1 CON]Meditate 4+ days/week. [+ 1 WIS]1+ yoga session/week (preferably two) [+ 1 DEX]No caffeine (discretionary 2+ cups of tea to combat being jet-lagged) [+ 1 STA]Don’t stress about goal #3 [+ 1 CHA]3) Time to find a good doctor. GP visit [+ 1 CHA]Naturopath appointment [+ 1 CON]Student health center appointment [+ 1 CON]Side Quests: Floss 6+ days/week [+ 1 CON]Handstand progression practice 2+ days/week [+ 1 DEX]Life Quest: check 3+ things off my to-do list every week [+ 1 STA] As you might have guessed from this list of lists, I won't be around much this challenge (esp. with that screen curfew)--but I'll be checking in to stay accountable. Feel free to post random things in my absence. Preferably random UK-themed things--I'm going to spend the next five weeks clinging to all things British. Well, not marmite. But there will be lots of tea. Oh, and I’d really like a triple digit squat before I leave the UK. Yes, I know it will turn into triple digits as soon as I fly over the Atlantic, but I want the 100 kg .
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