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  1. It is time to return to a challenge that always seems to fill me with the energy and motivation to stay active. It is an epic one, but it is less about completing all of the things and more about staying present with the essence of each challenge goal. Basic Challenge: Connect With Environment: The Na'vi are deeply connected to the natural world around them and they take care of it. When completing each of these challenges, engage all of your senses and stay mindful of the impact nature has on your body and your spirit. At least 30 total minutes outdoors/day in a natural setting Go barefoot as often as possible and be mindful of how my body reacts; wear minimalist shoes when necessary. Explore an unfamiliar outdoor area, or explore a familiar one as if seeing it for the first time. Swim in wild waters (creeks and rivers) and climb trees Give at least 5 total minutes/day of mindful attention to a life form other than human (pets, wildlife, plants, etc.). Download Joulebug and complete at least one challenge/day. Do a litter cleanup in a natural area at least once/week. Avoid using plastics of any kind (unless impossible). 1 hike or trail run/week Connect With Food: The Na'vi are omnivorous hunter-gatherers with a deep connection to the available provisions that surrounded them, both meat and plant. When completing these challenges, savor each bite, eat mindfully and pay close attention to how this affects your body and spirit. Eat full vegetarian at least one day/week Eat at least 1 vegetable/day Eat fresh meat whenever possible instead of processed/boxed/canned meat at least 3 days/week; this includes fish (BONUS: game meat when possible). Forage at least once/week (dandelion, plantains, wild onion, etc.) Fast intermittently; be mindful of when it is acceptable to not eat and when it is necessary Eat locally at least once/week if possible (Farmer's market?) Connect With Body: The Na'vi need their body to be in top shape in order to survive such a harsh environment. When completing this challenge, use a variety of "wild fitness"/primal/paleo natural movements and be mindful of how this impacts your body and spirit. Deep squat more Drink at least 1/2 gallon of water/day. Practice balancing on a narrow surface 3 days/week Dead hang for at least 30 seconds 3 days/week. "Natural movement" HIIT workout at least 3 days/week; continue to incorporate resistance bands and other home workout equipment (cinderblocks, log, stones, etc.) Barefoot sprint in the field more often Daily breathwork Connect With Tribe: The Na'vi have a deep connection with members of their tribe, especially family but also tribal elders and leaders. For this challenge, be mindful of your relationships and how you strengthen them. Spend time in the afternoon with your daughters ('ite); at least one technology-free playtime/week. Use intimate physical touch with tribal members (for family: hugs, kisses, holding hands, snuggling; handshakes/hugs for friends). At least one uninterrupted/technology free evening with wife (muntxate) Call your mother (sa'nok). Connect With Self: In spite of living in a savage environment, the Na'vi are very self-aware and practice a disciplined self-control and humble appreciation of all life, including their own. Become toruk makto: tame the beast and take control of your temper by pausing and being mindful of your emotions. Seek wisdom: read works written by great tribal leaders and elders who have come before you. Choose your words: be mindful of when to speak and when to be silent; don't waste words, but choose them wisely. Be grateful: keep a log each day of things for which you are grateful. Connect With Eywa (God): The Na'vi believe in and commune with a being greater than themselves. This is the essence of their culture and it drives their actions and lifestyle. While completing these challenges, be mindful of where your heart and spirit rest on these issues. Greet each morning with a grateful smile and a spoken "Thank you." Pray/meditate in silence at least 10 minutes/day. Integrate prayer throughout the day. Treat each person you meet as spiritually connected and as image-bearers of God; treat all lifeforms as God's creation. Practice agape love (unconditional love). Bonus Challenges: Learn Na'vi language. Spend at least one night outside (in a hammock, if possible). Take a long hike deep into the woods (off trail, if possible). Ride a horse. Harvest spring water. Go rock climbing (freestyle).
  2. Hello Nerds, annyshay here! Back again for another challenge. I'm not going to make too many tweaks to things at the moment because they're honestly going really well. I want to maintain my momentum. For those that don't know me, I'm a thirty-something single lady that who lives with an orange tabby named Dragon in the Northeastern US. I've been a member of the Nerd Fitness forums for many years. Along the way, I met my health coach, Amy Clover, who has been helping me move past dieting and performance health based on external metrics to focus more on the way that I want to feel and building habits that support that. I'm going to go back to the elements for my challenge this time, with a heavy emphasis on those in Avatar: The Last Airbender (lovingly referred to in the future as ATLA). Earth - walk at least once a day Air - intentionally seek out support Fire - PT exercises Water - cook 1-2 times per week
  3. Bringing back another past challenge that I created three years ago; I think it may actually be my favorite and possibly one of the most impactful. It's hefty, and I likely won't be able to do all the things, but regardless I recall feeling very free and in tune with my natural self during this challenge. I have made some modifications to fit my more current life (i.e. I can't spend more time with my grandpa because he passed away), current abilities, and current goals, but the essence of the challenge will remain the same. Connect With Environment: The Na'vi are deeply connected to the natural world around them and they take care of it. When completing each of these challenges, engage all of your senses and stay mindful of the impact nature has on your body and your spirit. At least 30 minutes outdoors/day in a natural setting Go barefoot at least 30 minutes/day; wear minimalist shoes when necessary. Explore an unfamiliar outdoor area, or explore a familiar one as if seeing it for the first time. At least one wild swim/week At least one tree climb/week Give at least 5 minutes/day of your attention to a lifeform other than human (pets, wildlife, plants, etc.). Download Joulebug and complete at least one challenge/day. Do a litter cleanup in a natural area at least once/week. Avoid using plastics of any kind (unless impossible). 1 trail run or hike/week Connect With Food: The Na'vi are omnivorous hunter-gatherers with a deep connection to the available provisions that surrounded them, both meat and plant. When completing these challenges, savor each bite, eat mindfully and pay close attention to how this affects your body and spirit. Eat full vegetarian at least one day/week Eat at least 1 vegetable/day Eat fresh meat instead of processed/boxed/canned meat at least 3 days/week; this includes fish (BONUS: game meat when possible). Forage at least once/week (dandelion, plantains, onion, etc.) Intermittent fasting Eat locally at least once/week Connect With Body: The Na'vi need their body to be in top shape in order to survive such a harsh environment. When completing this challenge, use a variety of "wild fitness"/primal/paleo natural movements and be mindful of how this impacts your body and spirit. At least 5 minutes deep squat/day practice WHM breathing or some breathing practice daily cold shower daily Drink at least 1/2 gallon of water/day. Dead hang for at least 30 seconds 3 days/week. At least 2 minutes of planking at least 3 days/week. 30 burpees/day At least 15 minutes of free-running/sprints 3 days/week on uneven terrain (barefoot if possible). "Natural" movement HIIT with plenty of variety 3 days/week (see Mark Sisson's WOWs for ideas). Connect With Tribe: The Na'vi have a deep connection with members of their tribe, especially family but also tribal elders and leaders. For this challenge, be mindful of your relationships and how you strengthen them. Spend every afternoon with your daughters ('ite); at least one technology-free playtime/week. Use intimate physical touch with tribal members (for family: hugs, kisses, holding hands, snuggling; handshakes/hugs for friends). At least one uninterrupted/technology free evening with wife (muntxate) Call your mother (sa'nok). Connect With Self: In spite of living in a savage environment, the Na'vi are very self-aware and practice a disciplined self-control and humble appreciation of all life, including their own. Become toruk makto: tame the beast and take control of your temper by pausing and being mindful of your emotions. Seek wisdom: read works written by great tribal leaders and elders who have come before you. Choose your words: be mindful of when to speak and when to be silent; don't waste words, but choose them wisely. Be grateful: keep a log each day of things for which you are grateful. Connect With Eywa (God): The Na'vi believe in and commune with a being greater than themselves. This is the essence of their culture and it drives their actions and lifestyle. While completing these challenges, be mindful of where your heart and spirit rest on these issues. Greet each morning with a grateful smile and a spoken "Thank you." Pray/meditate in silence at least 10 minutes/day. Integrate prayer throughout the day. Treat each person you meet as spiritually connected and as image-bearers of God; treat all lifeforms as God's creation. Practice agape love (unconditional love). Bonus Challenges: Practice another language (Duolingo) Spend at least one night outside (in a hammock, if possible). Take a long hike deep into the woods (off trail, if possible). Ride a horse. Harvest spring water. Climb the Hallelujah Mountains: Go rock climbing (freestyle).
  4. INTRO 'Olo, you lot! Welcome to my quiet little corner. I am Haniya (pronounced Hun-nee-yah) a Nerdy, Sporty, DND[currently watching Critical Role]loving, Comic book enthusiast with a penchant for arts, Video games, Books, Disney movies, music and Mystery Murder shows [Stranger Things, Sherlock, Killing Eve, The Umbrella Academy and Elementary anyone?] also Neil Gaimann because good omens is a fantastic show and is worth fangirling about. Today I have entered as a ranger to challenge myself. Hopefully, my experiment will help me build my habits and my body. I feel like my true self best fits in this sneaky, lean, strong and dangerously cool class because strength and stamina are the two things that I ideally want and we all wish to master. Hence, here I am and here I go! BACK STORY TIME: WE all know how our health is the MOST important thing in the world--physical, emotional and mental as well--especially when you've been obese half your childhood. Its hard to get back on that health horse when like half of your house hold isnt primed for it at all. Regaining my good healthy self has been a massive struggle, no less a bumpy roller coaster ride of high and lows. Well, I've been at it for quite a while with the NERDS--actually listening and enjoying the company of the people--thus, naturally, I come running back to thine fine health, happiness institute of fittitude! [Gedit] Even though i hate typing, i do try to update as often as I can. Well, anyways! I live in Pakistan (south east asia) where carbohydrate is as important and as common as air and I am not joking! OUR DIET AND CUISINE IS JUST FULL OF IT AND EVEN IF YOU TRIED, YOU JUST CANT SHAKE IT OFF AND IGNORE IT! BUT. I. WANT. TO. CHANGE. MYSELF. I DON'T WANT TO BE ADDICTED ANYMORE AND THAT'S MY MAIN MISSION HERE! BUT MOST IMPORTANTLY! I will go slow this time and not overwhelm myself as much as I am prone to so I'll just go over the basics of my mission. Cus. I. Can. And. I. Love. To. Sound. Very. Official. OH, SHALL WE MOVE TOWARDS MY BASE OF OPERATIONS?! *drumroll* OP 1: Take control of the wheel, agent! As the new agent of SHIELD, it is your duty to physically take care of what you put in your body. Filling in the shoes of Natasha Romanoff is going to be a hard job, recruit, so I suggest you take those shoes seriously and work hard! *There we go, guys. Big shoes to fill* So, clean eating and portion control is the key. Refined sugar and fried stuff is your ENEMY. IT'S YOUR HYDRA! You must defeat the bad side! *telegram* Recruit! We are not that cruel, you know, so we are allowing you a two day cheat treat. Aren't we cool?! Of-course, we are, we are SHIELD! OP 2: Find the lost Tomb of Rorustan You want to be the next Lara Croft? You want to go on adventures and move mountains like her, yes? Change the course of time and history like her? Then, you got to train like her! Her strong and Charismatic body took years and years of hard work and perseverance! Can you keep up? *CanI?* Journey to the lost tombs, human and bring forth power! My objective is to run and do body weight exercises (darebee and skipping rope) 3-4 times in a week with two days rest period. Walk for 20-30 mins daily. CAN YOU HEAR THE SPIRITS TALKING? YES! I DO! I CAN HEAR LARA CROFT! MASTER, I CAN HEAR HER WHISPERS FROM THE INSIDE, SPEAKING OUT TO ME (awksslipawaytoyonder) OP 3: Bend it like Korra! Before she was the avatar, Korra knew nothing of her powers and how to control them but with the help of her teachers and peers, she blossomed into the strongest being we know today! Want to Bend it like Korra? *Heck Yeah* then you must dedicate some time to your education; to learn and grow like the avatar. Daily one or two videos that'll inspire you or give you knowledge about the world and beyond. Study spanish: Duolingo and Memrise streaks, audio lessons from Pimsleur and YouTube video lessons. Dont forget to make notes in your notebook. Meditate to calm your souls. A clear and tension free mind is a happy mind! TAI CHI PRACTICE! Watch David Dorian Ross videos and practice along. New videos everyday to build your 103 long form practice. OP 4: "Be as flexible as Kamala Khan" SUPERHERO BY DAY, REGULAR GAMER CHILD BY NIGHT! Balancing your hero and human life takes a lot of work but you have to do this in order for the world to make sense plus, fun time is fun time! So, here are my humanly duties towards a good future:- Journal writing: habit tracking, Spanish progress and recording my days key features as bullet points to make my life easy Updating nerd fitness with my journey in the form of ratings A-F [A being super awesome and F Epic Wamp] and supporting new people and their journies! *POWER RANGERS, METAMORPHOSIS! Oh, wrong fandom* Read more books by adhering to the 50 books a year challenge: Give 1-2 weeks maximum to my current read by reading everyday for 20-30 minutes Focus on your hydration: Minimum 6glasses to up to 8 glasses. More water! LASTLY NEVER GIVE UP! Speaking of giving up, we all need some kind of push on our behinds, right? That's why I have certain ideals. Certain role models that I look for inspiration and motivation when I am feeling particular down in the ditch. These forces of good are there when i need them the most, to guide me through my epic quest I call life. Someone who I want to be: Inspiration Dice I have so many role models that I look up to! People who have proved to be gigantic and so bad arse--who don't need to be reminded of their worth! People who are amazing enough to inspire and motivate us all to follow our dreams and challenge our limits. They teach us that being kind, resolute, strong and brave--in the face of danger--is the most noblest of things you can do. So, so talented, so powerful and so stupendous. I want to be them and I am honoured to call them my idols: Lara Croft, Black Widow, Korra, Ellie Goulding, Aveline De Grandpre, Aloy, Merida, Captain Marvel, Avatar Aang, Dr 13 and Yasmin Khan, Neil DeGrasse Tyson, Jim Kwik, Shuri, Okoye, Kamala Khan etc. I am not promising here but i will try to keep you guys up to date with my daily shenanigans and what-nots. Apart from that, I want to THANK you for YOUR precious time! And I might need you guys to help me with this challenge because my focus on them has been very rocky but I am ready to CHANGE MYSELF FOR THE BETTER! I SWEAR ON MY PRETTY LITTLE HANDS THAT I SHALL TRY MY HARDEST! *CUE RICK ROLL SONG* p.s: i love DND even though i am a complete beginner so talk to me about it or if you are looking dnd players then lets band together! I am all for an epic dnd session!
  5. As some of you recall, a little more than two years ago (wow, it doesn't seem that long ago) I created a challenge inspired by the James Cameron movie Avatar. This morning, I took my dogs on a barefoot walk in the morning rain and decided it was time to reboot this challenge. I'm going to modify it to include some of my recent goals and exclude goals that are either no longer relevant (can't visit grandfather b/c he passed away) or have become habits and no longer need to be considered "goals" (such as early wakeup). But I am keeping the same theme structure with a strong focus on primal fitness and nature, and of course there will be a lot of Avatar-related greatness and lots of other wild awesomeness to enjoy. If you weren't around the last time I completed this challenge, zola‘u nìprrte’. I am glad you're here. Connect With Environment: The Na'vi are deeply connected to the natural world around them, and they take care of it. When completing each of these challenges, engage all of your senses and stay mindful of the impact nature has on your body and your spirit. At least 30 minutes outdoors/day in a natural setting Go barefoot at least 30 minutes/day; wear minimalist shoes when necessary. Explore an unfamiliar outdoor area, or explore a familiar one as if seeing it for the first time. At least one wild swim/week At least one tree climb/week Give at least 5 minutes/day of your attention to a lifeform other than human (pets, wildlife, plants, etc.). Download Joulebug and complete at least one challenge/day. Do a litter cleanup in a natural area at least once/week. Avoid using plastics of any kind (unless impossible). 1 hike or trail run/week Connect With Food: The Na'vi are omnivorous hunter-gatherers with a deep connection to the available provisions that surrounded them, both meat and plant. When completing these challenges, savor each bite, eat mindfully and pay close attention to how this affects your body and spirit. Eat full vegetarian at least one day/week (Meatless Mondays) Eat at least 1 vegetable/day Eat fresh meat instead of processed/boxed/canned meat at least 3 days/week; this includes fish (BONUS: game meat when possible). Forage at least once/week (dandelion, plantains, onion, etc.) Intermittent fasting Eat locally at least once/week (Farmer's market?) and seasonally when possible Connect With Body: The Na'vi need their body to be in top shape in order to survive such a harsh environment. When completing this challenge, use a variety of "wild fitness"/primal/paleo natural movements and be mindful of how this impacts your body and spirit. Wim Hof Method breathing and cold showers daily Morning movements and stretches daily At least 5 minutes deep squat/day Drink at least 1/2 gallon of water/day. Balance at least 10 yards on a narrow surface 3 days/week Dead hang for at least 30 seconds 3 days/week. Push-up progression daily At least 2 minutes of planking/day at least 3 days/week. Ride the direhorse (bike) at least 3 times/week. Follow the Primal Blueprint Exercise Plan; below is the simplified version: Monday – Sprint Tuesday – Lift Heavy Things/Bodyweight Exercises Wednesday – Move Slowly, Play or Rest Thursday – HIIT/WOW Friday – Move Slowly, Play or Rest Saturday – Lift Heavy Things/Bodyweight Exercises Sunday – Move Slowly, Play or Rest  Connect With Tribe: The Na'vi have a deep connection with members of their tribe, especially family but also tribal elders and leaders. For this challenge, be mindful of your relationships and how you strengthen them. Spend every afternoon with your daughters ('ite); at least one technology-free playtime/week. Use intimate physical touch with tribal members (for family: hugs, kisses, holding hands, snuggling; handshakes/hugs for friends). At least one uninterrupted/technology free evening with wife (muntxate) Call/visit your mother (sa'nok). Continue to help and spend time with your mentor Connect With Self: In spite of living in a savage environment, the Na'vi are very self-aware and practice a disciplined self-control and humble appreciation of all life, including their own. Become toruk makto: tame the beast and take control of your temper by pausing and being mindful of your emotions. Seek wisdom: read works written by great tribal leaders and elders who have come before you. Choose your words: be mindful of when to speak and when to be silent; don't waste words, but choose them wisely. Be grateful: keep a log each day of things for which you are grateful. Connect With Eywa (God): The Na'vi believe in and commune with a being greater than themselves. This is the essence of their culture and it drives their actions and lifestyle. While completing these challenges, be mindful of where your heart and spirit rest on these issues. Greet each morning with a grateful smile and a spoken "Thank you." Pray/meditate in silence at least 10 minutes/day. Read/listen to a devotional/contemplative prayer daily Integrate prayer throughout the day. Treat each person you meet as spiritually connected and as image-bearers of God; treat all lifeforms as God's creation. Practice agape love (unconditional love). Bonus Challenges: Learn Na'vi language. Spend at least one night outside (in a hammock, if possible). Take a long hike deep into the woods (off trail, if possible). Harvest spring water. The Hallelujah Mountains: Go rock climbing (freestyle).
  6. Water... Earth... Fire... Air. Long ago, AThousandWords lived in good health and fitness. Then everything changed when a new baby arrived. Only good eating habits and occasional exercise could have saved her waistline. But when her world needed these habits the most, they vanished. A an entire year passed and she discovered new motivation: an awesome Avatar themed challenge. But although her gif skills are great, she still has a lot to learn before she's ready to call herself healthy again. But I believe... AThousandWords can save the world. Hi, I'm Yvonne, and it's been a year and nine months since my last NerdFitness challenge. I'm an inconsistent Rebel; I've started about fifteen challenges and fully completed about 8 of them. But NerdFitness is my happy, get-shit-done home. I always come back when I need a kick in the pants, so here I am. I lost over thirty pounds the last time I was participating on NF but stopped joining challenges when I got pregnant. I switched to Battle Log format, hoping to keep up during my pregnancy, but vanished like the Avatar after only a few weeks. Last week I celebrated that baby's first birthday and realized I couldn't keep eating and slothing like I'm pregnant/breastfeeding anymore. With a baby who (mostly) sleeps through the night and doesn't need me to be a milk-machine anymore, I have no excuse not to start cutting back my diet and getting my butt off the chair. There have been some HUGE changes in the last year - adjusting to life as a mom, starting a new job where I work from home, and moving to a new house! - and I let myself get complacent and kept gaining weight even after giving birth. It's time to turn that around, be a healthy role model for my family, and start feeling like myself again. AThousandWords Book 1: Water I've been wanting to do an Avatar themed challenge for ages (I have so many gifs to use!) but it feels especially appropriate now that I am returning after having been gone for so long. My plan is to focus on a different element for each challenge, starting with Water - the element of change. I want to remind myself that I am mutable and fluid; I can change my story at any time; I can adjust easily to new shapes and new challenges; and I am powerful and capable as well. I also plan to be flexible this challenge - there are no absolutes or firm lines here. If a certain kind of exercise or food isn't working - change it up! I don't thrive eating the same food or doing the same exercise every week, so I don't plan to. Diet (CON 3) My diet is in serious need of change. If you followed my pregnancy battlelog (or have ever been around a pregnant woman - ha!) you'll know that first trimester nausea hit hard and all I was able to stomach were simple carbs. For most of my pregnancy I ate bread and sugar (I'm fairly certain my son was born 90% PB&J) and my brain got addicted to all that delicious carby badness; I kept eating junk waaay after pregnancy was over. I'm going back to a Primal eating plan - protein, fat, and plant-based carbs only. I'm embracing flexibility and following the Primal Blueprint Carbohydrate Curve recommendation to stay between 50g – 100g of carbs a day. This worked out great for me during my last challenge, and I'm optimistic I'll succeed again. I’m using the Banting Green/Orange/Red lists as a guideline; each food has a cost in points: Green List: 0 pts (free!) Orange List A: 1 pt per serving Orange List B: 2 pts per serving Red List: 5 pts per serving Goal: 3 points per day, +5 flexible points per week A: < 104 points | B: < 116 points | C: < 128 points | D: < 140 points | F: > 135 points Movement (2 STR, 2 DEX) A waterbender has to practice to increase their skills! And I am badly in need of some movement. I'm focusing my exercise on two main areas: steady and flexible. Anything goes as long as I keep moving. Examples of exercise are listed below each movement type. I’ll be recording time spent, with total time counted at the end of the challenge. Slow, Steady Movement (STA) Walking Hiking Cycling Goal: 3 hours a week A: > 12 hours | B: > 10 hours | C: > 8 hours | D: > 6 hours | F: < 6 hours Flexible Movement (DEX) Yoga Dance/Pole Stretching Goal: 2 hours a week A: > 8 hours | B: > 7 hours | C: > 6 hours | D: > 5 hours | F: < 5 hours Water (2 CON) This is a no brainer in a water based challenge, right? I'm not drinking enough water currently, I need to be. Plain ol' H2O, sparkling water, fruity (no sugar added water), or caffeine free tea all count (Uncle Iroh would be proud). Goal: 8 cups every day A: >= 100% | B: >= 85% | C: >= 70% | D: >= 50% | F: < 57% Money Management (1 WIS) After doing taxes I realized I'm doing a terrible job of tracking and investing our savings. I have a number of tasks I need to do to get control of our income and debts, these can be done all at once or spread across the challenge as needed: Update our Net Worth spreadsheet with current values Determine how much we can afford to save each month Determine how much we can afford to give charitably each month Decide where to invest our savings and set up auto-deposits into savings accounts as needed Decide where to give money and set up auto-deposits for those charities as needed Evaluate my 401k plan at work Goal: 6 tasks A: 6 tasks | B: 5 tasks | C: 4 tasks | D: 3 tasks | F: < 3 tasks Tracking Spreadsheet
  7. Hello, Annyshay Here! Last challenge I learned something about myself... I am SO MUCH STRONGER than I have given myself credit for, and I can TRUST MYSELF. Let's get right down to business shall we? This challenge, we're going to get to know the Earth with Toph. Quests! Barefoot - spend time every day in nature barefoot Twinkle Toes - movement breaks (dancing encouraged) Melon Lord - tell stories, play games Dig Down - ongoing recovery work (journal and various online communities) Also, never forget. No one is alone. Let's get started!!!
  8. For any newbies, welcome! I'm Annyshay (Shannon IRL), and I've been wandering around in the rebellion for quite some time now. For all my allies, welcome back! I'm never exactly sure where I fit... assassin, ranger, adventurer, druid. Lately, I've had a lot of life events that have brought me back to examine my identity. And like any millennial worth her salt, I took a bunch of online quizzes... Unfortunately... Your results were not clear. Tell me about it, quiz... wait a minute. I know what this means. I'm the friggen... Time to bust out of this stupid Iceberg... With a little help from my friends... (PS, that's you guys )
  9. Hello again, all! I'm back for another air-installment to try to build awesome habits. Last time around, my challenge was simple, but I still bit off more than I could chew. My new job, an online course (just finished up!) a surprise Whole30 with coworkers and some other challenges really threw wrenches into my system. Not great! I'd like to do this challenge again (even though I did alright last time!) to really solidify these habits and build on them. I'll also be emphasizing daily morning rituals. When you're taking care of an Air Temple, you've got to start the day off right! Equinoxe's Airbender Challenge: Part II Mindful Study: Morning Practice Start the day with 15-30 min of morning meditation at 5am. I have found that reading in the evening is better than starting with reading in the morning; I get into a groove, and don't want to stop! That's better to save for when I don't feel the time pressure to get out the door for work... Mindful Moving: Morning Exercise Pretty self-explanatory. I've been ramping up my exercise routines, but want to aim for more frequency rather than harder workouts. My biggest challenge will be making time for exercise every day, instead of getting a head start at the office. (My #1 excuse for skipping a workout) But now that I have the Movement Space set up, I want to use it! I'll be focusing on yoga and weights/rowing, alternating every other day. Mindful Eating: Eat (and drink!) Like an Airbender Alright, this goal will be separated into two parts: First part, finish my vegetarian Whole30 with my coworkers (done the last week of October). Second part: Continue eating primarily whole-foods plant-based through the rest of the challenge. I've ID'd some great foods that seem to do really well for me, and I want to favor them. (I'll probably get more specific about this goal when the second stage rolls around) As for my mindless snacking, I've been eating a LOT of nuts over my Whole30, which has actually been making me feel pretty ill. Instead of snacking, my plan is to reach for herbal tea! That seems good enough for now. Let's keep training! Boom!
  10. For those unfamiliar, Iroh as a character from the show Avatar the Last Airbender. He was a wise peaceful man, whose past as a general was full of victories and skill. I personally thought he was a great thing to aspire to, so I will take those first steps in this challenge. My challenge is broken down into three manageable parts each one focused on a different aspect; body, mind, spirit. Since training one without the other leads to imbalances and weakness, I want them all to get better. The Body: Enjoy what is good, as often as possible. Reason: One of the major parts of Iroh's personality is his love of food, tea especially. I am a line cook, so I know how to cook quite well. But I continually find myself not eating or eating things that make be feel terrible afterwards. So this part of the challenge is to fix this and have my body running on good healthy food. Plan: When I cook and have the time, I actually eat very well. Including a massive amount of vegetables. However it is when I am rushed or looking for quick energy that I eat terrible things for me. So the plan is as such. Begin to carve out time for two meals a day, one in the morning and one in the evening, with small snacks in between. My work has plenty of options for snacks, so it is chiefly the meals at home I need to focus one. The main battle will be when I need something fast before leaving or heading to bed. So for the mornings I will be making sure that I start making up overnight oats, or keeping fruit on hand. Ideally granola as well, even though it isn't perfect. For the evening making sure there is sandwich materials on hand and making some dressing ahead of time, as given half a chance I will eat a large salad and a sandwich leaded with veges. In addition on my time off actually cooking larger meals. Forgetting to eat is a goal. Also no more dairy as I am lactose intolerant. Measure of Success: I will measure this with a weekly grade of fifteen points. Two for each meal a day and one for getting good things at the grocery store. At the end I will tally the points and see how I did. 100%: A, 90%: B, 80% C, 70% D, and Failure after that. Reward: By doing this I will feel better, as I will have a constant supply of energy and not be going up and down constantly. In addition not eating dairy will stop bloating, which makes it easier to move and breath. The Mind: Study both deeply and widely. Reason: Iroh was known not only for his skill in certain areas, but also in the breath of his knowledge. He continually learned about new things, and applied them to his own interests. As such I will make time each day to read. Plan: I enjoy reading so there will be no need for it to be forced, it is mainly finding the time. I will set aside the last half hour of the day before bed to read each night. In addition I will count any time reading articles online towards this, if only because it is still reading. Measure of Success: I will be using a similar method as above, giving myself one point a day every time that I read. I will also give myself the option of reading articles for halg an hour a day to gain an additional point. This way if I don't read one day, I can double up to make up for it for a short while. 100%: A, 90%: B, 80% C, 70% D, and Failure after that. Reward: Reading is good for the mind, and I genuinely enjoy it. By reading both books and articles I let myself learn more deeply about one topic, while still keeping up to date. Plus it gives me a way to relax at the end of the night. The Spirit: Many arts are better then one. Reason: Iroh knew many ways of bending and incorporated them into his bending. I have been doing Tai Chi on and off for various reasons. While it may not be the style that speaks most to me, it is a very useful one. Plan: Every day I will do ten minutes of Tai Chi. I have not worked out when in the day is best, so the fist week will be trying various times of the day. Ideally I would prefer the morning, but we shall see what works out. I have a basic form that I know and will do that, with a few minutes of breathing meditation beforehand to focus. Measure of Success: I will tally how many days I did it at the end of the challenge, with the same break down of success as before. This one however will not reward extra practice, as it is more about establishing a routine. Reward: Tai Chi helps with the little aches and pains I have, as well as giving me a way to relax and center myself. In addition the concepts behind it seem like they would be useful in other martial arts. Any questions or comments are appreciated, I love good feed back! Especially as it may help me further refine or trouble shoot.
  11. First, some mood music: This challenge is based on the Na'vi from James Cameron's Avatar. It's an epic one, but it blends well with habits I have already developed. Connect With Environment: The Na'vi are deeply connected to the natural world around them and they take care of it. When completing each of these challenges, engage all of your senses and stay mindful of the impact nature has on your body and your spirit. At least 30 minutes outdoors/day in a natural setting Go barefoot at least 30 minutes/day; wear minimalist shoes when necessary. Explore an unfamiliar outdoor area, or explore a familiar one as if seeing it for the first time. At least one wild swim/week At least one tree climb/week Give at least 5 minutes/day of your attention to a life form other than human (pets, wildlife, plants, etc.). Download Joulebug and complete at least one challenge/day. Do a litter cleanup in a natural area at least once/week. Avoid using plastics of any kind (unless impossible). 1 hike/week Connect With Food: The Na'vi are omnivorous hunter-gatherers with a deep connection to the available provisions that surrounded them, both meat and plant. When completing these challenges, savor each bite, eat mindfully and pay close attention to how this affects your body and spirit. Eat full vegetarian at least one day/week Eat at least 1 vegetable/day Eat fresh meat instead of processed/boxed/canned meat at least 3 days/week; this includes fish (BONUS: game meat when possible). Forage at least once/week (dandelion, plantains, onion, etc.) Intermittent fasting Eat locally at least once/week (Farmer's market?) Connect With Body: The Na'vi need their body to be in top shape in order to survive such a harsh environment. When completing this challenge, use a variety of "wild fitness"/primal/paleo natural movements and be mindful of how this impacts your body and spirit. At least 5 minutes deep squat/day Drink at least 1/2 gallon of water/day. Balance at least 10 yards on a narrow surface 3 days/week At least 10,000 steps/day Dead hang for at least 30 seconds 3 days/week. At least 2 minutes of planking/day at least 3 days/week. 75 pushups/day At least 15 minutes of free-running/sprints 3 days/week on uneven terrain (barefoot if possible). "Natural" movement HIIT with plenty of variety 3 days/week (see Mark Sisson's WOWs for ideas). Connect With Tribe: The Na'vi have a deep connection with members of their tribe, especially family but also tribal elders and leaders. For this challenge, be mindful of your relationships and how you strengthen them. Spend every afternoon with your daughters ('ite); at least one technology-free playtime/week. Use intimate physical touch with tribal members (for family: hugs, kisses, holding hands, tickling, snuggling; handshakes/hugs for friends). At least one uninterrupted/technology free evening with wife (muntxate) Call your mother (sa'nok). Visit your grandfather. Connect With Self: In spite of living in a savage environment, the Na'vi are very self-aware and practice a disciplined self-control and humble appreciation of all life, including their own. Become toruk makto: tame the beast and take control of your temper by pausing and being mindful of your emotions. Seek wisdom: read works written by great tribal leaders and elders who have come before you. Choose your words: be mindful of when to speak and when to be silent; don't waste words, but choose them wisely. Be grateful: keep a log each day of things for which you are grateful. Connect With Eywa (God): The Na'vi believe in and commune with a being greater than themselves. This is the essence of their culture and it drives their actions and lifestyle. While completing these challenges, be mindful of where your heart and spirit rest on these issues. Greet each morning with a grateful smile and a spoken "Thank you." Pray/meditate in silence at least 10 minutes/day. Integrate prayer throughout the day. Treat each person you meet as spiritually connected and as image-bearers of God; treat all lifeforms as God's creation. Practice agape love (unconditional love). Bonus Challenges: Learn Na'vi language. Spend at least one night outside (in a hammock, if possible). Take a long hike deep into the woods (off trail, if possible). Ride a horse. Learn to shoot a bow. Harvest spring water. The Hallelujah Mountains: Go rock climbing (freestyle). Obviously, I will need all the support I can get. I look forward to hearing your input and words of encouragement.
  12. Annyshay... Wake up... Annyshay, the chosen one... I am Rauru, one of the ancient sages who built the Temple of Time to protect the entrance to the Sacred Realm... This is the Chamber of Sages, inside the Temple of Light... The Temple of Light, situated in the very center of the Sacred Realm, is the last stronghold against the Ganondorf's evil forces.
  13. Annyshay stumbles into her home and lets her pack fall heavily to the ground. Dragon greets her with his usual warmth and demands to be fed. Once Dragon's needs are attended to, Annyshay sheds her cloak and boots. She sinks into her well-worn chair and reaches for the scroll emblazoned with "For the Rebellion!" She sighs as some scenes from the last few weeks flash in front of her eyes - political unrest, friends consumed by despair, and harsh words that cannot be unsaid. The flashes of memory threaten to fill her mind with regret and worry, but Dragon jumps onto her lap and tries to insert his muzzle between her hand and the scroll. This movement reminds Annyshay of her intention, so she repositions Dragon and opens the scroll. She moves past her brooding to share these moments with her friends in the Rebellion. As always, the scroll lets her share in the struggles and victories of her fellow rebels. An all-too-familiar thought comes to her - you will never change. Annyshay notes the thought and renews her commitment to be the author and editor of her own legend (follow the link to my battle log and backstory), instead of heeding the thoughts that have so often overpowered her. She scratches Dragon's chin, takes up her quill, and begins to write... Quest the first - Post Daily on NF My rebels are my tribe. I value all of your kind words and love. Whenever I stay away from NF, I cut off my support system. That's the worst plan. Time to re-establish the habit of showing up here each day. Quest the second - Journal about Eating Nutrition is a big challenge for me, as my body composition currently shows. This is largely rooted in emotional eating driven by chronic stress. No diet or habit tweaks will complete this boss battle if I am not willing to examine myself without judgment and address my boss battle's root causes. Quest the third - Mindful Moments I'm stealing this from Headmaster Amy Clover of Strong Inside Out. Basically, I take a moment before any eating to check in with myself. Quest the fourth - Choose Love Cynicism and bitterness are natural responses to the challenges we rebels face, but with Jesus' help I will choose to act out of love. Love will be my modus operandi and will inform my choices instead of fear, anger, or despair.
  14. Oh hai guys. I am back. I sort of took off into the abyss and made like an invisible person. Contain yourself. I know this return thrills you. @Ceasefire came back this go, so I am, too. I am going to try at least. I have another half marathon in October, so here we go with training again. Four simple goals: Earth: Earth is a grounding force. I need to keep my core and cardio training up, so once a week I will complete a 30 minute Les Mills BodyCombat track to further my half marathon training. I will also lift heavy things with Les Mills BodyPump once a week. Strength training, ftw. Water: Is flexible and understanding. I live by the 80/20 rule with food. Be your best 80% of the time and the 20% you aren't doesn't matter as much. It's not an excuse to slack, it's the reality of being someone who lieks to go out to eat with friends and who really likes beer. I will food journal on YouFood daily to track this goal. Fire: Is full of energy - it destroys as well as heals. I will run 3x per week. Sounds easy, right? But these low mileage early weeks can get boring. I hope that keeping up here will help me focus and not find excuses to not run. Air: Is peaceful and patient. I need to be nicer to myself. So each check in, I will have to come here and write something nice about myself. Something I accomplished, something I like about me... Anything positive. We're going light and easy on the return.
  15. Hello Assassins, I'm back!!! Well, actually... I'm in Uganda... But I think I've emerged from my recent rage stress spiral. Also, my internet access is surprisingly good (except apparently, I'm unable to post gifs.... Grrrrrr)? So, it's time to resume my badassery... And who better to learn from than the Dragon of the West? Uncle Iroh and his wisdom will be my guide! Main Quest - Resilient and Radiant "No! Zuko! You must never give into despair. Allow yourself to slip down that road and you surrender to your lowest instincts. In the darkest times, hope is something you give yourself. That is the meaning of inner strength." I'll talk more about this during the challenge, but my mental strength and spiritual health are my focus. My healthy choices will continue to rebuild me into the awesome badass woman that I am meant to be. "You can't always see the light at the end of the tunnel, but if you keep moving, you will come to a better place." Moving - enjoy some type of movement every day for at least two minutes "A man needs his rest." Rest - electronics off for 60 minutes before bed "Sick of tea? That's like being sick of breathing." Tea and Breathing - tea is an opportunity to mindfully enjoy one of my favorite things
  16. Brutal Bears Defeats the Nerd Super Villains Introduction: Goal-To Defeat the Evil Nerd Spirits Out Lift the BRO Lift at least 4 times a week. Week 1: 5 Week 2: 5 Week 3: 3 Week 4: 0 Out Run the Impostor Walk/Run 30 miles a week Week 1: 42.4 Week 2: 36.3 Week 3: 44.7 Week 4: 19.2 Out Think the Alpha-Nerd Keep up with daily French studies and twice a week private lessons (an X for each complete week) XXX Sugar Kill The Youth (we all know they only run on sugars) Prep all of the weeks paleo meals on Sunday each week: Weeks done: XXXX Let the Cut Begin Out Friend the Pervert Stay connected on NF-connect with someone everyday Starting Pic: 186 Pounds
  17. Ack, new challenge started and I haven't set mine up yet! D: I'll make this spiffy later I guess. QUEST: Eat a balanced vegetarian diet, get a decent amount of exercise, do yoga, and generally focus on keeping a clear mind and becoming integrated. Goal 1: Vegetarianism If you've watched Avatar: The Last Airbender, you'll know that airbenders are vegetarians. So, uh... me too. :} To achieve this, I'm going to order produce from the local community centre, watch vegan/vegetarian YouTube videos for inspiration, and occasionally track my nutrition to make sure I'm getting enough iron (but not every day, because calorie counting turned into disordered eating once upon a time, so I don't want to enter that unpleasant little spiral again). I'm also going to read Intuitive Eating, to cultivate a healthy relationship with food. Yay. ^,^ Goal 2: Yoga It's hard for me to do yoga when I'm not in a good place mentally and emotionally. Sometimes forcing myself isn't good, but I'm going to aim to do yoga multiple times a week, since, generally, it does help clear my mind. Good stuff for computer desk jockeys. x.x To achieve this: select a video a day in advance and do it. If I find that I just don't got the energy to next day, I'll do a minimum of 5 minutes of meditation instead. Goal 3: Other exercisey stuff. I developed Achilles tendinitis in December, so I've got to take it easy and find alternatives to the exercises I used to do. :[ At least I still have biking! So: one day/week, I'll try a new workout on YouTube! Life goal: Music I wanna learn to make electronic music, so I'm going to practice that every day. Again, laying out a plan in advance = bueno thingy. So tomorrow, gonna make one cool drum loop. Wahoo.
  18. Last challenge fizzled because of sick hubby, sick kiddos, and shark week. This challenge is an exercise in resilience and consistency. Most of these goals are resets from last challenge. Water As in, I don't drink enough of it. The Avatar cannot live on coffee alone (though it is delicious and wonderful and life-giving). Goal: Drink more water. I think I should be aiming for 100 ounces a day. (This is should work out to about 10 cups per day.) I tried working with my 24 oz water bottle last challenge, but I found I just didn't bring it to work often as I should have. So I am going to use a cup that I already have at my desk and switch to our drinking glasses at home. 26 days x 10 cups A = 260 cups B = 208 cups C = 156 cups F = below 156 CON +4 Earth Workouts towards the end of last challenge really fizzled, so this is going back to basics. 3 workouts x 4 weeks = 12 workouts A = 12 B = 10 C = 8 F = less than 8 STR +4 Fire Taking lunch to work rather than eating out 4/week x 4 weeks = 16 lunches A = 16 B = 13 C = 10 F = Anything less than 10 CON +3, WIS +1 Air Going to bed on time. Still trying to figure out the specific metrics for success. The main goal is to go to bed before 11. CON +3
  19. Three fitness quests & one life quest? Sounds like four elements to me. Theme also partially chosen because I'm binge watching Avatar in preparation to finally watch Legend of Korra. Water As in, I don't drink enough of it. The Avatar cannot live on coffee alone (though it is delicious and wonderful and life-giving). Goal: Drink more water. I think I should be aiming for 100 ounces a day. My favorite water bottle holds ~24 ounces, so I need to be drinking 4 of those plus half a glass over the course of the day. Since going from essentially no extra water outside of my coffee & tea habit to 100 ounces seems a bit drastic, I will score this as a total over the course of the challenge. 26 days X 100 ounces = 2600 ounces XP will be awarded as a percentage of this number is reached. (I will calculate out this amount once I figure out the new scoring system and epic goals and all that.) Earth This element is the main reason for moving to the warriors guild, continue to lift heavy things. I am 2 months into the Starting Strength programming and want to continue progressing forward. My epic goal for 2015 is to get to a 1x bodyweight deadlift. If my deadlift continues to progress and I continue to lose weight, this will happen relatively shortly. Current deadlift: 125lbs Current weight: 140lbs My lifting schedule struggled a little over the holidays, plus the cold snap we had here in the PNW (my home gym is in an uninsulated garage). So this first challenge of the year is going to revolve around just getting back out to the gym consistently. 4 weeks X 3 workouts per week = 11 workouts for this challenge (the last week of the challenge ends on a Friday, and thus the Saturday workout doesn't count) XP will be awarded as a percentage of this number is reached. (I will calculate out this amount once I figure out the new scoring system and epic goals and all that.) Fire Mastering the fire element means making fire work for me instead of against me. In the case of this challenge, it is going to be making my own food at home instead of falling into the easy trap of just going to get something. This serves two purposes for me (1) it's more healthy and (2) it's much cheaper. My big pit falls are lunches to take to work, grabbing something to eat on the way home from work, and not feeling like cooking on the weekends (so I usually send hubby out for something for the four of us). 26 days X 2 meals per day cooked at home = 52 meals XP will be awarded as a percentage of this number is reached. (I will calculate out this amount once I figure out the new scoring system and epic goals and all that.) Just for kicks, according to this calculation, those 56 meals out would cost me $714 dollars (just for me, that doesn't count the fact that I'm usually going with my hubby and probably both girls). Giving myself a generous food budget of $5 per meal made at home ($2-4 is pretty reasonable for most meals, but we're just being theoretical at this point), that points to a cost of $280 for those 56 meals made at home, for a net savings of $434 over the course of four weeks. I don't know about you, but I could think of a lot of things I'd rather spend $400 dollars on than food. Air Slight stretch here, but stay with me. The air nomads gave up attachment to physical things in order to master their element. In an effort to get control over our home, I am working through setting up a system called The House That Cleans Itself (there is apparently a new version out since I bought this book, but this is the one I'm using). The systems calls for moving through every area of your home, purging, cleaning, and setting up new systems to help your house stay neat and orderly. For this challenge, my goal is two-fold: (1) spend (at least) 20 minutes per day implementing the system and (2) finish all of the steps outlined in the book in our entryway. I am partially through the purge and clean steps after a pretty intense session out there this weekend. (Our heat pump died over the holiday & we needed to have space for someone to come look at it today.) 26 days X 1 20 minute sprint per day + n bonus XP for completing the entry way XP will be awarded as a percentage of this number is reached. (I will calculate out this amount and the amount of 'n' once I figure out the new scoring system and epic goals and all that.) Edited to adjust numbers slightly based on the challenge being 26 days instead of 28.
  20. Hey all my buddies! My goal this challenge is to continue pushing forward with the good habits I've developed over the last 2 months. Balance strength training with conditioning, good nutrition, and sleep. Boring and simple - but there will be lots of Korra / Avatar pictures! 1. Strength Training Continue workouts, at least 3 hours per week. Can be Stronglifts, Oly lifts, or Strongman movement training. 2. Conditioning Continue workouts, at least 3 hours per week. Can be Crossfit, jogging, rowing, or other met con. 3. Nutrition Continue hitting dem macros - average within 10% over the course of the week. Calories 2392 Carbs 255g (43%) Fat 88g (33%) Protein 145g (24%) 4. SLEEP! Average at least 7.5 hours a night per week. I'm kickstarting this weekend by competing in a local highland games for the first time!
  21. She gazes, eyes wide with wonder, at the shimmering apparition of a face staring back at her. It is that of a young skinny girl; ears pointed, pale of skin and with curious eyes. The strange girl's shoulders rest and an arm tentatively reaches out - but just as her fingers brush the surface of the crystal-clear water, her reflection evaporates ripple-by-ripple. An eager smile creeps its way onto her lips. This girl stands tall, eyes drifting skyward, hands crossed like wings above her own kingfisher heart. Her eyes sparkle. Her face beams; "Let the adventure begin", she whispers with a grin. Great freedom comes with great responsibilityI've began my adventure and am on my own way, but it isn't all fun and games. Still, there is no reason to let this one slide. It's essential to remember that freedom and discovering can be refreshing and good for the soul, but that it's important not to lose your wits about yourself. Keep care of yourself on a basic level so that you have a foundation on which to build upon.Wear my Bands every dayA. 40-42 daysB. 37-39 daysc. 34-36 days Gengo hitotsu dake de wa tarinaiIf I ever hope to learn waterbending from the very best it's essential that I can speak in their tongue. Its time to extend my vocabulary and pick up some essential skills along the way. You never know when it might come in useful.Japanese x4 times a weekA. 22-24 timesB. 20-21 timesC. 17-19 times An open space promotes an open mindIt's important to have a serene escape to train, to meditate and to relax. This first leap into discovery can be tiring and difficult, but so long as I have my own sacred living space to heal, I know I can make it.Tidy every dayA. 40-42 daysB. 35-40 daysC. 30-34 days Mastering the basicsStudying scrolls, listening to advice - this is all well and good. But nothing is quite as effective as getting out there and training. It is time to discover myself and to take my first steps in water-bending, so lets give it our all! Yoga seven times a weekA. 39-42 timesB. 35-38 timesC. 30-34 times
  22. So this challenge I'm focusing on two elements I relate strongly to: earth and water. It's kind of unintentionally gone Avatar-style as well because Korra and Toph are my inspirations for getting back to what I was once capable of. I miss my old beast!mode self, even though I appreciate the softer, kinder side of my personality that's gotten the entirely of my attention lately. Water - Observe and Heal I need to sit back, chill, and observe and reflect on myself if I'm going to learn anything. I'm keeping a daily journal that includes bullet-point notes on what I've eaten, how I feel physically and mentally, and if I've done anything noteworthy. I have memory issues sometimes so writing things down allows me to remember and analyze patterns. My legs and feet have been suffering lately so I'm going to work stretching and using a tennis ball on the bottom of my feet into my daily routine to get them back into shape. Earth - Go HARD I've created an excel document where I'm tracking my daily exercises. Every single day I must do at LEAST one push-up (any kind), one squat, and jumping jacks. High numbers would be great but this is an exercise in discipline and habit-building. I also want to walk between 5k-7k steps per day, as work has been making that more difficult again. Extras As my own personal mini-quest I'd like to finish four books between now and the end of the challenge. I can read a book a day so I have no excuses for this one. My friends and I are participating in our own personal "30 Characters in June" challenge, even though we started late. My goal is to have 30 new character designs created by July 1st! I'll try to update here more frequently than in other challenges and share successes that aren't part of the main quest as well.
  23. Ryuu1011 Trains with the Avatar Challenge #3: April 13- May 25, 2015 Learn to Fire Bend and Burn the Fat Away Goal One: Loose 6lbs and 2% Body Fat (+1 Con +2 Cha) Got my diet and exercise pretty dialed in at the moment now its just a matter of keeping that fire burning. Decided to put the points in charisma for this challenge because if I'm being honest this goal is really about the abs... Starting Weight: 156.8lbs ---> Goal: 150lbs Starting Body Fat %: 17.2% ---> Goal: 15% Learn to Earth Bend and Build a Rock Solid Balance Goal Two: - Hold a 15s freestanding Handstand, a 15s Tuck Planche, and a 15s L-Sit [on the Floor] (+2 Str, +2 Dex, +2 Sta) Three bodyweight tricks I would like to get better at. I can hold each one for around 5 seconds or less currently and think a 10 second increase over the next six weeks would be great. 15 seconds doesn't seem like a lot but I'm sure this is going to be by far my hardest goal to achieve. Learn to Air Bend and Overcome Gravity Goal Three: Complete 6 [kipping] Muscle Ups and 1 dead hang Muscle Up (+3 Str) Got my first muscle up during the last challenge, this time I am going to try and improve on it. Well see what happens, the dead hang muscle up may be a little bit of a long shot but I think I can make it. Learn to Water Bend and Let the Past Wash Away Goal Four: Work on Myself & My past- Write Letter to all of my Ex's come to terms with the past and then burn those letters at the end of the challenge and let it go. (+2 Wis) If you were following along with my last challenge I shared some of my...unpleasant...past, that I am working though trying to become a better person. So for this challenge I would like to delve a little bit more into my past and my feelings to come to terms with everything by writing letters to each of my past GF's (5 Letters) and 1 Letter to my Parents, and then let them go at the end of the 6 weeks by burning the letters. Harmonize my World Side Quest: Volunteer at the Local Habitat for Humanity at least once during this six weeks. No Points, just want to get into the habit of volunteering at least once a month. BOSS BATTLE: Rugged Maniac May 16th 2015- How appropriate was Steve's last article on Boss Battles!? I'll be having my first boss battle midway though this Challenge and man am I excited! Loot (Some Possible Options): Overcoming Gravity & Starting Strength iphone fitness Strap Running Belt Pouch Thing Yoga Blocks & Yoga Mat Pre Challenge Photo: Beginning of last challenge 2/19/2015 vsBeginning of this challenge 4/16/2015 Starting Measurements: Starting Metrics: Weight: 155.6 lbs % Body Fat: 16.7% Waist/Abs: 31" Hips: 31.5" Arms: 13.5" Calf: 14" Chest: 39" Thigh: 22" Shoulders: 46" Weekly Recaps: Week One: Week Two: Side Quest: Harmonize my World- Volunteer for Habitat for Humanity Times Volunteered= 0/1 0%0% Progress: Nope, my little brother had troubles so I went home to spend time with him. Week Three: Side Quest: Harmonize my World- Volunteer for Habitat for Humanity Times Volunteered= 0/1 0%0% Progress: Art show this weekend, gosh this side quest is harder than I thought it was going to be. Week Four: Side Quest: Harmonize my World- Volunteer for Habitat for Humanity Times Volunteered= 0/1 0%0% Progress: Modeling Shoot and Mothers Day.... -__- I think I just need to just pick a date and do it. Week Five: Side Quest: Harmonize my World- Volunteer for Habitat for Humanity Times Volunteered= 0/1 0%0% Progress: Boss Battle this weekend- Going to do this next weekend. I've got too! Week Six: Side Quest: Harmonize my World- Volunteer for Habitat for Humanity Times Volunteered= .5/1 50%50% Progress: So I had planned on signing up for the Saturday this weekend but they didn't have any volunteer spots (probably because its Memorial Day weekend), but I did go ahead and sign up for next Saturday which is technically outside of the 6 weeks of the challenge but its within my personal goal of once a month so I'm going to count this one as a success (even though its by the skin of my teeth)
  24. Water, Earth, Fire, Air. Long ago, the four nations lived together in harmony. Then everything changed when the fire nation attacked. Only the Avatar, master of all four elements could stop them. I must master all four elements to become Avatar, to become the master of my body! I'm very excited about the progress I've been making so far and want to keep it going. My Main Goal: still working towards a US size 10 jean but ultimately surpassing this goal is in the books. Officially becoming the Avatar may take a little more than being a smaller size so I am also really focusing on building strength as well. Going for that whole harmony thing. Of course one step at a time. My missions! 1) Book of Water- Upgrade my Diet! I plan to upgrade my diet 3 times using the NerdFitness Diet as a guide. Obviously I am starting at level one and have the potential to upgrade three times during this challenge. Ideally ending at level four. Each level up requires two weeks and each upgrade requires something different. I haven't focused too much on my diet during my last challenge as I have already drastically cleaned up my eating before beginning here at NF but each level of this challenge will help me to be more mindful and healthy in my eating habits. (Grading will be every two weeks as Pass/Fail. At the end of the challenge I will grade the overall progress. Still lvl 1 = FAILED/ lvl 2 = C/ lvl 3 = B/ lvl 4 = A) {Tough to allocate points because there is much that goes into this goal. Many different things going into it. 2 CON, 2 WIS} 2)Book of Earth- Daily Stair Mastery! This may be a big challenge since I live on the 8th floor but I plan to take the stairs instead on the elevator every time from now on! On average I use the elevator in my apt 12-16 times a week. Gonna master the stairs here instead. (Grading will be weekly. 100% use =A/ 90% use =B/ 80% use =C/ 70% use = D/ 60% or less = FAILED) {1 STR, 1 DEX, 2 STA} 3)Book of Fire- Do 3x body weight workouts per week! Last challenge I did the BBWW three times weekly. This week I will adding some variety by using the body weight brigade workouts. Also using my personal warm up and cool down routines. As I complete these I will be upgrading through brigade workouts to further challenge myself. (Grading will be weekly. 3x = A/ 2x = B/ 1x = C/ 0x = FAILED) {2 STR, 2 STA} My life Quest: Air- the air benders were nomads. Perfect for my travel planning goal. In a few months I'll be touring a few places I haven't been to yet Aus but have been procrastinating my planning. I love reading and seeing pics of the sites but I will be travelling on a budget with 2 others so this needs to be planned out properly! I need to get to the details too. {3 WIS} I have also taken new measurements and pictures for myself. My current stats: Bust: 43" Waist: 38" Hips: 43" Thighs L: 23" R: 22" Biceps L:13" R:12.5" Although my airbending skills are great, I still have a lot to learn before I'm ready to save anyone. but I believe, I can save the world! EDIT: This is obviously also my first challenge in The Adventurers Guild and if any of you have any tips or suggestions I would love to hear them!
  25. Aang: So, Toph thinks you give pretty good advice. And great tea. Uncle Iroh: The key to both is proper aging. Hello my Monkly friends! I am back after a few challenges off! A lot has happened since then, but the big ones are as follows: I officially survived a year post big breakup, kept my weight at 180 or less (40 pound loss overall!) and turned 28. And so in honor of my favorite Avatar character, this challenge is going to be focused on cultivation of self as I grow older. Iroh is kind of a boss! He cares deeply for others, does whatever makes him happy, and devotes himself to noble pursuits! Definately the kind of guy I want to be. Here is my guide for learning from the Dragon of the West! 1. Food Iroh loves food! As do I. And of course as we all know nutrition is key in building a healthy lifestyle. Therefore goal one is to cook enough to last me at least 3 meals every week! I've been practicing some basic recipes and should have enough to make a different dish every week. That's optional though, the big goal is to make sure I have leftovers at home as much as possible so I am not tempted to eat something crappy just because I got home hungry. As per my usual, they are going to be paleo/primal and easy to make, as I am still quite the culinary n00b! 2. Recovery I've been dealing with some chronic back pain for a while, and it is time to take it on again. This time the strategy is as follows: Combination of stretching and this nifty workout I took from Scooby's workshop. (Soothing baths optional, but I'm hoping to include a couple!) Goal here is to be consistent, and do this at least 5 days a week. I really look forward to grinding at this, and seeing what I am capable with the pain better managed! 3. Pull Ups! Iroh ain't no slouch when it comes to bodyweight workouts! I am actually currently in week 3 of the 20 pull up challenge! I am doing this for two reasons. The first is that I will be doing the Spartan Sprint with my buddies once again this February. Last time I failed pretty epically at the rope climb. But no longer! I'll admit the second one is mostly for vanity's sake. I like the way I'm looking, so I would not mind keeping up the progress! My objective is to get to 20 pull ups by the end of the chalenge, and if I get that far implement them in my morning workouts! 4. Life Goal "It is important to draw wisdom from different places. If you take it from only one place it become rigid and stale." Just as Iroh developed lightning redirection from studying the waterbenders, so I too can learn from other schools. Insecurity has been one of my biggest opponents in many aspects of my life, and that includes as a capoeirista. I have rarely ever trained with other groups, mostly because I have been afraid I was not good enough to represent the school I have come from, not to mention hangups about my own issues of endurance and asthma. But it's time to change that. I have no intention of leaving my academy, I am very attached to both their training philosphy as well as the community I have found there. But as far as my training is concerned... I have hit something of a rut. Ours is a smaller school and there are only two other capoeiristas at my level. We have been training together for years, and I know their jogos back and fourth by now. I need a new challenge, just to rethink what I do, and find something new to try. It's time to visit a different tribe! Objective here is to go to at least one class of at least one other group. This challenge is mostly a boring one, and I mean that in the best possible way. I have found my best results have always come from slow and consistent changes. Looking forward to another great challenge!
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