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  1. The Druid life suits me. I feel that my approach to coming into tune with nature is through physical meditation. I have noticed that working out and exercising in general has been helping me sharpen my relationship with my surroundings and myself! I looked through my Pathfinder rulebooks and found a level 2 Druid Spell that I love! Aspect of the Bear grants the Druid a bonus to his Armor Class and Combat Maneuver rolls. Armor Class isn't necessarily how much armor you are wearing, it's more about how hard you are to hit. I'm not looking at physical combat here, more like Metaphysical Combat. I am at war with my old habits and lack of discipline. I need to be harder to hit, more evasive in the battles to come. I need to be able to slip out of the grasp of my old nature as I seek the path to my Grove. The specters of my old habits are many, and litter the road ahead of me with the bones of past attempts. I need to hone my skills to better fight them off! My Goals will be summarized by three spells that encompass what I am trying to learn. SPELL ONE: BEAR'S ENDURANCE Right now I am working to cast off the abuses of my old life and shed some fat. I am working on strength training, but the way I am approaching my workouts lends itself more to better Endurance. If I reach this goal, I will grant myself +4 to Constitution. Spell Components: 6 Day Split workout, divided between upper body and lower body workouts. A: Not skipping any workouts, and adding intensity to those workouts B: Not skipping any workouts C: Miss one workout D: Miss two workouts F: Miss three workouts SPELL TWO: SLIPSTREAM I am assisting my primary goal (fat loss and health) by increasing my cardio workouts. I started my quest earlier this year through walks and working on the stationary bike. Now, I will be adding daily Interval workouts to help myself travel more in tune with nature. If I achieve this goal, I will grant myself additional Dexterity and Wisdom. Spell Components: Couch to 10K training program A: At least 60 minutes of Interval Training/Cardio every day of the week B: At least 30 minutes of Interval Training/Cardio every day of the week C: Miss one day training D: Miss two days training F: Miss three days training SPELL THREE: ASPECT OF THE BEAR Since the beginning of December I have been focusing on how, and what, I eat. I have practically eliminated processed foods from my diet, and I want to continue this. Not eating my "trigger" foods of pasta, breads, and sugars has greatly reduced my weight, and is really helping me understand a lot about other aspects of my nature. By reducing my size, I will increase my Armor Class and Combat skills in general, making me better suited for battling the Specters on my path to the Grove. I am also focusing on reducing portion sizes by not having seconds on meals, if I am still hungry in an hour, so be it. Have an apple, dammit! Spell Components: Eliminate Processed Foods A: No processed foods B: One Day processed foods C: Two days processed foods D: Three days processed foods F: Four Days processed foods Spell Failure: If portion size exceeds one big bowl or plate, spell loses intensity and slips a grade. CAMPAIGN: The Lych King of Azum Ghul Thousands of years ago, there was a mighty sorcerer who, in his heart, was a Champion to the People. He could create amazing works and conjure objects of great beauty. Over time, the sorcerer grew arrogant about his power, and began to lose his connection with the mystical energy within the earth from which he drew his power. His body began to warp and distort, and his mind, now full of loathing and seething with hatred, began to snap. The People grew wary and fled his realm. Soon, he was a mere Shade of himself, and passed from the Mortal Realm. But his ravaged spirit lived on, and began to warp and twist the land around his crypt. The forest began to fester, and the ponds and rivers became stagnant and fetid swamps. The animals of the land started to avoid the Blighted Woods, and the peasants of the area began to whisper of evil spirits haunting those once sacred lands, now called Azum Ghul, or the Cursed Land. Adventurous souls took it upon themselves to rid Azum Ghul of evil, and were seldom seen again. Those that did survive spoke of terrors beyond comprehension, and roads littered with the bones of the dead. One adventurer claimed that he was attacked by these very same bones and barely escaped with his life. Another spoke of a bloodthirsty Gnoll that guards the path halfway through Azum Ghul and feasts upon the remains of those who have fallen before him. This is where I come in. I am an initiate in an ancient Order of Druids, and I have been entrusted with Hallowed Secrets about the true nature of Azum Ghul. I have been charged with a quest to enter these haunted woods and to vanquish those spirits that have sullied the land. My Order believes that a portal to one of our Sacred Groves lies deep within the woods, and only by restoring Azum Ghul to its pristine state will we be able to visit that grove again. I will have to face the Specters of those that have fallen before me, and face the true evil that has corrupted these lands to be successful. MINI-BOSS FIGHT: Rottgutt the Gnoll Rottgutt has grown fat over the centuries by feeding off of the corpses of the fallen. He lurks in the shadows by the road, using his knowledge of the land to trick his prey off the road, where they become easy targets. I will defeat Rottgutt by avoiding him altogether. I am going to go OVER him. Success: I will need to have much better upper body strength to pull this off. I will train daily to be able to do at least 4 full chin-ups by the half-way point of the six week challenge. Anything less than 4 full chin-ups is defeat for the week, I will need to defeat Rottgutt to move on to the Lych King's crypt. If I make this goal before the third week, I will continue to train chin-ups, since the more I can do the less likely Roattgutt will find me in the first place! BOSS FIGHT: Consumuerte, the Lych-King of Azum Ghul Consumuerte (the Eating Death) has made a palace in the twisted ruins of his crypt and the swamps around it. Facing the Lych directly is dangerous, since he can corrupt anything he sets his gaze upon. His crypt lies within a stagnant pool a little over 3 miles across. Consumuerte will attack anything that comes through the clearing, but he tires easily due to the enormity of his corpse. Success: Again, I am avoiding direct confrontation with the Fiend. I will cast Aspect of the Bear when I enter the swamps to make myself more effective at avoiding his attacks. I will then cast Slipstream to increase my speed over the swamps, and then Bear's Endurance to push my body farther than it has ever gone. If I can run through the swamps fast enough to evade the Lych King, I will be able to enter his Crypt and destroy his Animus Foci, which should hopefully break his Spell of Corruption over the land. The distance I will need to run is 3.10 miles. COMPLETION: The Portal If I make it to the Portal, I will seek guidance through meditation and communion with the land. I have no idea what lies beyond the Portal, but my Order needs to find our Grove soon. Only by completing my quest will we be able to find the answers we need! I have companions of a sort, a group of Knights that I have grown to rely on in times of need. They will not be joining me on this quest, but through the use of Waygates we can communicate with each other to offer encouragement and support. I think I will be relying on them more than ever!
  2. I haven't completed an entire quest yet, but I've been participating with NF since the day after Thanksgiving, and want to throw my lot in with the Druids. I've seen a lot of positive change over the last 33 days, and I'm really enjoying the challenge of getting up and hitting the workout every day! These goals are adapted from the ones I set out with at the end of November; I'm making a few changes to incorporate changes to my health and fitness levels since i started! A little backgournd: I'm 44 years old, own my own restaurant, and have a lifetime addiction to eating a lot of food and moving about as little as possible. I was up to 350 pounds in my 30's, then went on Weight Watchers in 2006 and got down to 215. Since opening the restaurant, I've been fluctuating a lot, and really don't want to keel over dead from a heart attack. I am an ethical Vegan, and cook a lot. This puts me around a lot of food, and that can be challenging. Vegan cuisine can be very nutritious, but eat enough of anything, you're going to put on the fat. I also draw and sculpt, and am part of the Geekshow Podcast, a weekly show with a bunch of geeks getting drunk and talking about geeky goodness. We do get a little vulgar, though! Motivation: I want to be fit, healthy, and a good provider to my wife and kids. I don't want to feel ashamed about my gut. I want to be able to take off my shirt and not feel awkward. I want to be around when my kids are adults, and be an active part of their lives! Goal 1: Cardio I need to get at least an hour of cardio four days a week: Either walking or riding the stationary bike at home. Bonus points for extra walks! A: 5 Hours of Cardio a week B: 4 Hours of Cardio a week C: 3 Hours of Cardio a week D: 2 Hours of Cardio a week F: 1 Hour of Cardio or less a week Goal 2: Body Weight Exercise I will continue doing the Basic Body Weight Workout three days a week. I have been able to finish three circuits and add additional exercises into the workout. A: Push and add additional difficulty to workouts B: Workout 3 times a week C: Workout 2 times a week D: Workout 1 times a week F: Punk out and not work out Goal 3: Nutrition I don't eat anything sourced from animals, and I'm surrounded by veggies every day. Problem is, I had been skipping the veggies and eating a lot of processed garbage. Tortillas, chips, deserts. I need to focus on clean, plant based food without processed foods. I finished reading the Thrive Forward book from Brendan Brazier, I will be using this as my guideline for how I would like to eat. I've managed to stay off the chips, bread, and sugar for over a month, but it is a weakness, so I will continue to keep this as a goal. A: No processed foods B: 1 day with processed foods C: 2 days with processed foods D: 3 days with processed foods F: 4 days with processed foods I managed to keep on the straight and narrow during the Holidays, but it's easy to fall off. Life Quest: I need to draw more! All work and no play makes me something something; I love to draw, so I am going to set aside a little time every day to draw! Life Quest 2: I'm a creative person, my house can get cluttered up. I need to work on keeping the house tidier. I will spend 15 minutes before my workouts cleaning up and putting my dojo in order. Side Quest: I will post updates daily to the Daily Battle Report. I am putting the scale away except at the beginning of the challenge, the halfway point, and the end. I will take a progress picture on the first of each month. I will not give up! Starting Weight: Will update on the 6th.
  3. Alright! Mini-Challenge Time! Goals: 1: FITNESS!!! Keep hitting BBWW 3x weekly, cardio at least 5x weekly 2: NUTRITION!!! Don't backslide on fitness goals. Continue to avoid processed foods like pasta, bread, and sugar. I've been doing really well with these goals over the last 25 days, with only one day involving processed foods!
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