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  1. [Placeholder for goals to follow] I don't want to post my goals until after I get back from vacation or I will feel guilty about not following them while on vacation. Because that's how I roll. In the meantime.... (Soon) ETA: I want to really focus on slaying the sugar demon this challenge, especially because this is the last challenge before the holidays hit with a vengeance. I would like to be able to enjoy holiday treats with moderation. Last challenge, I made a small step in this direction by limiting (or attempting to limit) the size of the sweets I eat. This was not a co.plete success, but I think there was progress made here. I also made some observations about what factors contributed to fail days. This challenge will be addressing some of those challenges. Primary goal: Substitute fruit or yogurt for dessert 5 days a week. Desserts, when eaten, must be patisserie-sized. Hopefully allowing some treats will keep me from imploding, especially in the event of special events. Obstacle #1: Fatigue All too often I stay up much too late reading. It used to be less of an issue because as a homeschool mom, I set my own schedule and don't have to be up particularly early. Enter The Changeℒ️. For no good reason whatsoever, I am now having difficulty staying asleep past 6:30 or so, no matter how much or little sleep I have acquired by this hour. The build up of fatigue tends to spill over into binging on food, especially sweets, to find energy to cope with the sleep deprivation. Therefore, I am setting a bedtime of 9:55 to help me get sufficient rest. Obstacle #2: Hydration I noticed a couple episodes last challenge when I felt compelled to eat, but the feeling went away if I had something to drink instead. I know that I chronically under-hydrate, so I want to set some goals to help me hydrate properly throughout the day. a) Drink 12oz of water every morning before coffee. Before coffee. b) Make a broth-based soup at least once a week. Stews, chilis, and other soup-adjacent dishes count as long as they are broth-based and not cream. I can eat cream soups, they just don't count for my scoring. This generally should result in eating soup 3-4 days a week, since I make a lot more than I can eat in one sitting. It also has the benefit of being quite satisfying for little calories, incorporate more veggies in my diet, and is hydrating! c) Enjoy a cup of herbal or spiced tea before bed, preferably outside as weather permits. I find it grounding to relax outside in the evening. It reduces stress and helps me avoid the general evening munchies tradition in my family. I was going to add more, but I think that's enough to start with. Too many moving parts tends to overwhelm. Happy challenge!
  2. I'm not planning to do a challenge this time around - I can barely keep Brainβ„’ on the most general of tracks right now, so trying to make real commitments to a regular workout plan or improved food consumption habits just seems like begging for a trip to Over Whelm. I'm sticking to general Just Get Through the Next Two Months with Limited Harm principles of 'eat salad when I can + intentional movement when bandwidth avails.' I'm in rehearsals/production for two shows until June 10, and have my next really important audition on June 15. We are getting close to putting The Taming of the Shrew on the boards, and we have tentatively added two dinner-theater performances of it the weekend after the Ren-fest, so that will take me right up to the weekend before auditions for The Little Mermaid. The best news, health-wise, is that The Wedding Singer is a pretty dance intensive show and I will be ensemble in most of the big numbers, so I will have pretty agressive dance rehearsals at least weekly until it hits the boards on June 30. Whew! But even though I'm not actually challenging, I want to try to keep up with as many of my Rebel Pals as I can, so I'm going to still try to pop in here when I get a free few minutes. Also, I thought y'all might like to see some of the promo shots we did earlier this week. (I'm the one in the striped corset) https://www.instagram.com/p/CryaoyRp8xt/
  3. I'm back with a low-key challenge after disappearing due to a combination of illness, stressors, and having other priorities. Going to keep the challenge set up and design simple because the priority is just making progress. Things have been happening offline - I've greatly improved our garden (we have grass now!), mostly painted another room in the house, and we got a DOG! The latter has been both disruptive and helpful when it comes to routines. I need to get back into the habit of doing strength/skill sessions, but thanks to regular dog walks I am at least getting ~5-8k steps in most days. My endurance is definitely better and my weight is in a good place, too. The other big to-do in my life is career planning/development, as I will be job-searching this summer. Right now I'm focusing on picking up more skills (adjacent to my current ones) so I have more options. I also need to build a portfolio that demonstrates those skills. So, goals for this challenge will be Figure out new routines for strength/skill/mobility work. By the end of the challenge, I'd ideally like to be training 2-3x/week. Sessions can and will be short while I figure out how to allocate spoons. I will also experiment with making my walks more difficult by rucking (which is completely new territory for me), and I will count that as a strength training option for this challenge. Do skill or career development at least 4x/week, with at least two "creative" sessions (i.e., making something that's not an example/tutorial, although it can use those as a basis). Again, these sessions don't need to be long or arduous - I just need to make consistent progress. As usual I will use emojis to track my progress: πŸ’ͺ bodyweight strength/skill session πŸ“š career skills session 🎨 creative career skills session Week 1 (starting Monday) ⬜ ⬜ ⬜ ⬜ ⬜ ⬜ ⬜ [Bodyweight strength and skills] πŸ“š ⬜ ⬜ ⬜ ⬜ ⬜ ⬜ [Career skills]
  4. This is my Year of Doing Brave Things, and so far things are going - oddly better than I expected? I had three overarching 20SOC goals for 2023. They all involved getting off my butt and out of my rut, doing things I've really wanted and made excuses not to do for way too long. 1. Audition for community theater 2. Submit a short story to a publisher 3. Shoot in a competition (I shoot long-range precision rifle) So far I've accomplished #1, and the fallout from that win has taken up all of my bandwidth for the past month and a half. I am playing Baptista Minola in Shakespeare's The Taming of the Shrew, with a steampunk circus setting. I am also taking voice lessons to recover from a lifelong fear of singing in public, and my vocal coach has convinced me to sing in the school's end-of-year show. In the hurly and the burly of rehearsals, memorizing lines, daily vocal practice, and an exhausting bout of business travel, I have let my health and fitness goals vanish into the depths of the North Carolina swamps. Last challenge I got my eating habits back to a little bit better, but I don't think I worked out twice in the whole six weeks. So this is a Keep It Simple, Gemma challenge period. I love GMB workouts and I'm a member of their "Alpha Posse." One of the freebies they have available to the Posse is a movement practice they call "The Daily Battery." I hesitate to call it a workout, because it's not going to move the needle on my strength or mobility or body composition. It's just meant to get me MOVING. That's what I need and what I currently lack. Movement. The DB is pretty simple. It's meant to be done early in the morning, and it's eight movements done for one minute each. So this challenge, the only goal is: Do the Daily Battery daily. Other targets that I am shooting at, but not going to count it as a "fail" if I don't hit them because I am terrible about trying to do too many things at once and giving up early: Eat salad 4x/week Walk 5000 steps/ day (I currently average ~4,200) Start learning a new song for musical theater auditions. I'm torn between The Worst Pies in London from Sweeney Todd, or Some People from Gypsy. I'm currently working on Just Around the Corner from The Addams Family and I'm starting to get comfortable with it, so I'm going to need a new challenge soon. Keep up with the forums - check in at least 3x/week
  5. The General Update: My health has been quite poorly the past month, and I have determined the primary culprit to be my new glasses. Something is "off" about the prescription, and I can tolerate looking at a computer or phone screen for less than a minute before the beginnings of a sick headache start to show up. I've got an appointment with my optician tomorrow to see if she can help me get it sorted. Meanwhile I'm wearing my old glasses. They are coming apart at the hinges, but at least they don't make me feel seasick! I had a blast at the audition for Making God Laugh last Saturday. I didn't get the part, which is cool with me because I didn't expect to. As soon as I came home I plunged headfirst into Shakespeare. I've got two weeks to refine my memorized monologue (Mistress Page, Act II Scene I of Merry Wives) and to prepare to read from several selections that Director Phil has provided, before I audition for The Taming of the Shrew. Timing is everything. When you show up at an audition, the sign-in sheet asks you to identify any conflicts that you will have during the production that will stop you from attending every rehearsal. It's not always a dealbreaker to miss one or two, or even more depending on the size of the role. But my boss has decided to send me to California for a week and a half - Feb 23 to Mar 6 - right in the first half of the production. This is probably one factor in why I wasn't cast in Laugh; the role I was reading for is in every scene, so missing any rehearsals is disruptive. (The other, bigger factor is that there were several very talented actors there with me!) So if Director Phil doesn't want to deal with the headache of scheduling rehearsals around the absence of even a minor supporting character, I can't blame him for that. If I was directing I would prefer not to mess about with that either. Not worried about it - I intend to nail this audition whether I have a chance at a role or not, because Shakespeare is bloody FUN! The travel plans got modified on short notice. I was only supposed to be gone for four days for a conference. But the College just hired a new Academics Officer (my 'official' job title) for the Camp Pendleton campus, and the Dean wants me to train her. It is really bad timing for the community theater season, but otherwise I don't mind too much. My dad and stepmom live in Los Angeles and I will get to spend two weekends with them. I don't get to see them nearly often enough. Challenge Goals: Ongoing - Vocal lessons weekly (well, except the Tuesday that I'm out of town, and maybe the one after I've spent all of Monday on airplanes home) 20 minute vocal warm-up and workout every day except airplane days. GMB 3x week - either Elements or Literal Immortality, as the mood strikes me Meditate daily New - Attend at least one session of an online improv class Travel without getting sick; to wit At least one balanced meal, with protein and a vegetable, every day At least 64 oz. water / day, increase to 100 oz. on airplane days Mask on plane, in airports, and otherwise crowded environs I love my job, and I am excited to see my dad, but I really don't like travel. Not sure what happened, I used to love it - now it is exhausting and stressful and I really dislike being away from the Hubs and my doggies. Ah well, this too shall pass. At least I don't have to do it often. I'll try to keep a good attitude about it.
  6. Well, I have been hanging my metaphorical hat for the past few weeks in the Warriors 4-week Challenge area, but this seems a more logical place to maintain my long-term growth tracker. Hi, y'all! My secret identity presents as a perfectly ordinary middle-aged woman, educator, grandma, gardener, pillar of the local church, crocheter, and canner of homemade chicken broth. I'm polite, introverted, bookish, somewhat motherly to the young Marines I work with at the military leadership school, and generally appear harmless. But the *real* me is a Guardian, a powerful force of loosely controlled and readily accessible berserker rage, an impenetrable mass of strength and skill. I'm a hybrid Warrior/Monk, but I'm on indefinite hiatus from martial arts training due to living in a small town with a dearth of convenient Krav Maga instructors. For the present, I am focusing all of my time and energy on re-learning to pick up pieces of iron and set them back down again. I recently returned to myself after a long period of sedentary aimlessness, and found myself considerably weaker than I wish to be. So I found a Starting Strength coach and a black iron gym, and after about a month, this is where I am today: Squat: 45# 3x5 55# 1x4 65# 3x5 45# 1x6 (backoff set to practice form tweaks) Bench: 45# 2x5 65# 1x3 77.5# 3x5 (PR) Deadlift: 95# 1x4 115# 1x2 125# 1x1 135# 1x3, 1x2 (PR) The squat is the main motivator for hiring a coach. I'm super awkward under the bar, a little scared of it, and really struggled to get to depth when trying to do this on my own. Coach has me most of the way straightened out now, but she keeps pushing me to extra volume because I'm not consistent. She says I overthink it. What she actually says is "Quit ANALYZING and freakin' just SQUAT!" So, that's what I'm working with.
  7. Heya friends! A bit late getting going this time 'round, but I closed one year and started another with a bout of the ol' COVIDs, multiple houseguests (post-plague, natch), and travel, so I'm really just now getting my feet under me again and ready to get moving. I've been reflecting on my "character sheet" and how, frankly, I don't think I improved a damn stat all last year. I may have even backslid! So, priority one for the next few months is gettin' a couple stat bumps. Specifically, I'm going to work on DEX and CON, because those are the two that suffered the most over the last few years. I'm dealing with a nasty case of plantar fasciitis, so I haven't been able to ruck or run or anything, and even short walks get pretty nasty. It's frustrating to no end, so I'm going to stop wishing it away and give it a good honest try to actually ADDRESS it, with stretching, mobility, and targeted exercises. It's something that's effecting real life constitution and dexterity improvement efforts, so I need to get after it and yet "it feels a little better" isn't really something that I can exactly quantify, but will be a recurring point I address here. Otherwise, again, we're working to bring up those character sheet stats, via the bench marks I lay out in the following post. Trying to be a more complete person overall, I'll work on all of them, but I'm deliberately putting aside my traditional STR focus for a bit. Not that I won't train it, and I'll still probably train it the most just by default, but I'm going to let it happen organically and not chance any specific goals or numbers right now. I'll always train strength pretty much out of habit now, but I really need to make an effort to get myself healthier and more resilient, and moving better. For goals specific to this Challenge, here's what I've got: 1) Lose 5 or more pounds. This is one small part of CON. I started the year at 254, so if I finish the Challenge anywhere in the 240s, it's a success. 2) Row 20 miles. Probably in one mile increments, but I can go shorter or longer per session as needed. This is something that doesn't bother my foot, gets my heart going, translates to CF WODs, and I figure can only help with goal 1. 3) complete 8 or more sessions of GMB Elements. Basically breaking down the whole DEX increase into smaller chunks here. 4) Finish cleaning up and organizing my office, as the start of a more thorough KdubCave overhaul. OK, that'll just about do it, I think, Longer term goals in the form of my "stats" will be on the next post, so my updates will be a blend of stuff from here and there. Happy New Year, all! Hope you guys all smash your goals!
  8. My last challenge was titled , All Joy, No stress, which ended up being a perfectly themed challenge, as I needed to focus on my gratitude and less on stress that was happening. We had wildfire smoke in the area, and the last two weeks of the challenge, my allergies made me feel pretty run down. Then, this weekend, my 93 year old father in law passed away. He's been very ill for a while, so we have been grieving already, but still it is hard. I know he is happier now, he is in heaven, but we still miss him. I have ideas for challenges, but right now, I don't have the energy to implement them. And that is fine. I have lots of good habits that I can do just on automatic. When I feel ready to put up some challenge goals I will. But right now it's just doing what I do Eating skills GMB workout 3 x a week movement- rowing, walking , gardening I have a coupon for my scrapbook that expires November 13th. So, I'd like to finish my Yellowstone scrapbook by then: Metropolis is in trouble! A mad scientist was working in a secret lab creating Zombie Carrots. Of course, the zombie carrots escaped and now they are terrorizing the people of Metro pilis. The Incredibles set out to once again rescue their city. I will need focus and determination to battle these foes! Eating Skills: eat snack and lunch with no screen distraction; listening to a podcast is fine. I already do this with my snack( mostly). Now I'm levelling up and trying it at lunch One of my traps is eating too many chocolate chips. I like having them as a treat. I want to learn to allow myself the treat, without going overboard. I bought some little containers. I'm going to place about 100 calories worth of chocolate chips in each container, and then store them in the highest cupboard, where I need a stool to reach. I am allowed to have more than one. However, I will have to go and get each one out of the cupboard.
  9. I did not intend to challenge this round, because Brainβ„’ has been locked into super-scattered-fugue mode for a few months now and I'm having trouble committing to anything further in the future than lunchtime. But it's NaNovember, and that always does a few things for me. Most important, it gives me a ready-built excuse for mental drift (sorry, what did I miss? I was trying to figure out how Hazel dies ...) It reminds me that all writers pretty much struggle with the same things I struggle with; fair defense against the What Is Wrong With Me demon. It puts me back in the headspace of "heck with it, it's story!" and lets me beg off the pressure to try and write something that other people will like. Also, I've done NaNoWriMo every year for the past 12 years, it would feel weird to not do it now. I don't always 'win' (currently batting about .500) but I always do it. And I very, very often say that I'm not going to do it 'this year' and then cave and create a new project sometime after Oct. 27. This is one of those years. Fitness-wise speaking, walking is what I have the bandwidth for, so walking is what I shall do. My Apple Watch says that I am currently averaging <4,000 steps per day, so I plan to increase that by 1k/ week until the end of this challenge. 8,000 per day seems like a fundamentally doable goal, considering that I am lucky enough to work on a highly walkable campus and live in a fairly walkable neighborhood (with an exuberantly walkable dog!) That's it. Write and walk. If I do any GMB workouts, then that's bonus points, but it's November so best if I don't get too attached to other outcomes. (Good advice for all the year, but somehow easier to take during NaNoWriMo) I'm still timeboxing and it is working pretty well, so there's that. I have very specific things to do with my Creativity blocks for this month.
  10. This video was posted on Youtube , and I really appreciated it, and thought it felt well for my next challenge, and how I want my goals to be focused. Fitness: Continue with the GMB workouts 3 times a week Do some walking Rowing , most likely 3 days a week, and sprinting once a week, or maybe every other week I also started GMB's respiration program, which is just a short program on breathing, so I'll do that some too Eating and maintenance: Last challenge I did a good job at maintaining my weight. What I want to focus on right now is learning how to maintain my weight without putting all my focus on it. I tend to swing between putting all my focus on weight, or not at all. I want it to be a good background, with some healthy eating skills that I can maintain most of the time, while also relaxing and enjoying other times and not being strict. Some eating skills I am working on: eating a balanced plate (carbs,protein, veggies or fruit) eating slowly being thankful for my food pausing mid meal and assessing my satiety eating snacks without a screen I weigh myself daily (ish) and take a weekly average so I can see trends. If I forget a day that's fine, it's just the consistent habit I'm establishing. I do it in the morning, so if I forget I just wait until the next day. Life: Monday morning write out my weekly goals _ I've been doing this for a couple of challenges , and find it very helpful Every morning write out the priority goals for the day. The goal is to write out a realistic goal of what I can do Gardening: Time to start putting things to bed. Prepare veggie garden for winter. Scrapbooking Complete at least 50% of Yellowstone trip Guest bedroom Last year I repainted it. But then I got distracted, and didn't finish the other things I wanted to do to decorate it. I have a to do list for it.. Goal is to get 50% of the way through that list. Goal to remember : I tend to think I don't have time for ..., because I don't have a big block of time. But things can get done in little chunks. Work on scrapbooking for a half an hour two days a week, is still progress. Also remember : My goals are to help me with my values. They are to help direct me on the path I want to be, and the things I hope to accomplish
  11. This is mostly a productivity challenge. But I'm trying to make it fun, too, because if it isn't fun I won't do it. I'm 55 years old. If I'm not grown up enough to do non-fun things by now, it probably isn't gonna happen - but most things can be made fun, right? I love my job. Seriously, my job is absolutely amazeballs: it suits my ADHD need for constant variation, makes good use of the education I recently finished paying off all those bloody loans for (!), and puts me in daily contact with some of the best people in all of peopledom. In short, a perfect fit. Every rose has its thorn, every pro has its con. The price of my insanely awesome work flexibility is a complete lack of STRUCTURE. Which for me means that some days I get a whole great large lot of things done. And some days (even weeks) I do absolutely nothing, and there are no external consequences for giant chunks of unproductive goofing off. But there are consequences for my mental health. When I look back over several days of bullet journal and realize that I have accomplished nothing, the 'why even bother' and 'what exactly is the point of anything' monsters inside my head get loud, my brain starts to itch, and depression looms. Blech! Fact: there is always work that I can do, and that actually needs to be done. But much of it is work that can be procrastinated until right before a major inspection or something. Basically filing, organizing, filling out reports. The boring bits. The easy easy easy to procrastinate bits. Secondary fact: I talk a lot about wanting to spend more time on my creativity - more drawing practice, more fiction writing, more pathetic attempts to learn contact juggling for klutzes. Key word there is "talk." What I actually spend time on is YouTube videos, Zelda Breath of the Wild, and internet shopping for things I don't need. So this challenge, I am having an honest stab at timeboxing. I can't get too restrictive with it, because my schedule does vary and my inner bratty brat will rebel with vengeance if I try to plan out every moment of a day. I'm keeping it stupid-simple: I've gone into Google Calendar and blocked off a one-hour chunk every day for "Focus Work" - tackling any paperwork that I have that I want to procrastinate, actively researching new teaching and classroom management strategies, reviewing curriculum for needed updates. And then another one-hour chunk for "Creative Work." If I have a meeting or an evaluation during those chunks, I can move them to wherever in the day they fit - but when I'm in those boxes, I'm in. As in Do Not Disturb. I am Doing A Thing. This time is for THIS. In other news, I've been involved in the NF 5 day walking challenge, which I am planning to expand into a 30 day walking challenge. I fell off the regular workout bandwagon again (seriously, I've been on and off it so many times I should have strong legs by now just from the step-ups!), so I'm starting over with GMB Elements 3x/wk. My workouts over the past two months have been at a construction site on Saturdays, mostly doing weighted carries with large pieces of lumber or bags of cement. Not bad, actually, but I do need more than once a week, and the heavy framing is done now. *I work for the U. S. Military at a leadership and communications school. The school is actually taught by active duty military personnel who have a lot of experience with leadership and communications and the other military topics, but little to no experience in the art and science of teaching. E.g. how to structure a lesson, choose a teaching strategy, build engagement and interactivity into a classroom, all that stuff that I went to school for. (I have an M.Ed in Educational Leadership). Besides the dullsville administrative tasks listed above, I get to help the faculty prepare for each new lesson they take on, certify them to teach it, evaluate them in the classroom and give them steering guidance, conduct a lot of faculty development. And a huge part of my job is just walking around, chatting with faculty and sometimes students, in the "how's this curriculum workin' for you, what do you need, how can I help?" line of chattiness. And I get to kind of choose my own schedule, so long as I'm available when they need me to evaluate them or go to a meeting and all my reports get turned in quarterly.
  12. Hi, I'm AuntDinosaur and was last active (on NF and in life) over five years ago, but I'm back as a Druid-in-training rookie. I'm 37, in the midwest US, and most recently a pastry chef, currently unemployed. Not walking to work or working in a kitchen has dropped my activity level to sedentary, and I definitely notice the effects on my body and mood. My physical goals are to move and stretch more, to build strength, stamina, and flexibility. I used to be pretty active in yoga and Pilates, and would like to get back into that. I also purchased GMB Elements last year and want to, you know, actually do it. On your mark. Get set. BAKE! Roll out the mat. Get on the mat and do something. A mix of yoga and pilates, aiming for around 15 minutes per day, but working under Mini Habits rules of committing to 'just one' a day. 5x per week Week One: [X] [X] [X] [] [] Week Two: [] [] [] [] [] Week Three: [] [] [] [] [] Week Four: [] [] [] [] [] Week Five: [] [] [] [] [] Move it. Shape it. Continue GMB Elements program three times per week. 3x per week (MWF) Week One: [X] [X] [] Week Two: [] [] [] Week Three: [] [] [] Week Four: [] [] [] Week Five: [] [] [] The Big Finish* To catch up on my Goodreads challenge and clear out my TBR and SCR (Simultaneous Current Reads) piles, I need to finish five books. These books do not have to be started during the challenge, as I'm halfway through at least three books right now. I would also like to start posting reviews of books** on Goodreads, Amazon, Instagram, and my website. During this challenge, I will write and post five reviews to social media. The five reviews do not have to be of the five books I finished this challenge. Book reviews for my own blog will require me making food and taking pictures, so those are just super-extra-yay points if I do any during this challenge. *Several books on my TBR are romance and I am not sorry for this pun. **Mainly cozy mystery, LGBTQ+ romcoms and culinary romcoms, or something to do with dragons. Finish 5 books. Review 5 books. Book One: Book Two: Book Three: Book Four: Book Five: Review One: Review Two: Review Three: Review Four: Review Five:
  13. [Future Home of AuntDinosaur's Epic Quest]
  14. Right now, I'm enjoying the summer, spending time in my garden, and catching those summer vibes. This challenge is going to be pretty straight forward. Maintenance Last challenge I just focused on my eating skills , and trying to maintain weight. I don't mind if I gain a bit ( muscles ) but I was gaining a bit more than I like, and the trend was going up. I'm going to keep focus on my eating skills, with one small tweak. I've gotten back into the habit of an evening snack. I think if I ditched this, I would be better off. I don't work really well with strict rules, so I am just going to put it as a guideline, with one stipulation: I can choose to eat something in the evening after dinner if I want, but if I do, I need to write it down, and record the calories, and also the why I am eating it eating skills I'm also practicing eating afternoon snack without a screen pausing before seconds, extra meal stopping half way through a meal and thinking about satiety stopping when full Life: The habit of spending some time on Monday writing out my weekly goals, and each morning writing out the goals, is super helpful. I will continue that. Garden is going great. I will work in the garden. Make foods with the stuff I grow. Fitness: Continue with my zone 2 rowing 4 days a week (ish) and my sprinting once a week Just started with the GMB and I will work on that walking- I will enjoy that. I will also recognize that I am working in the garden, and rowing, so even if I don't hit my 10,,000 steps a day, I don't need to feel guilty. Walking 10,000 steps a day is great, but so is other movement, and I don't need to feel guilty about not hitting it. Today: DId 20 minutes at 28 spm on the rower in the morning. Then I did my first session in GMB. It was just an intro to all the movement. Sort of similar to NF, but enough different to mix it up. On rings, we are working on the inverted hang. It's been forever since I did that, and I was a little nervous, but it came back fairly easy. Also working on L-sit. I enjoy GMB because it has some skill work mixed in. They also do stretching and mobility as part of it, which is good, because otherwise I skip it. GMB does shrimp squats instead of pistol work. I'm not worried about losing ground on the pistol though. GMB has you do a flow of front leg lift, to back to shrimp.It's pretty intense balance work, so it will help with the pistol. I don't think it does any dips though. I may add them in once a week, just to maintain the work I've done. We are in a heat wave, so not a lot of walking. I get some just by wandering around watering all the things. Took a short walk last night , and will do so again tonight. Right now I'm typing this challenge in our bedroom, which is where we have our portable AC
  15. Jumping in late due travel and illness. I'm going to treat the rest of this challenge as an extended Zero Week - the plan is to test out some goals and ramp up my activity levels so I can hit the ground running next challenge. Goals for this week: Re-start bodyweight training, using Elements to build a base Go for a walk x2 Build on my sleep success last challenge by 1) starting to get ready for bed by 10:30 pm each night, and 2) not using my phone in bed at night (besides for Kindle/alarm setting)
  16. Still sort of waiting for spring here, we've had a few warm days, but mostly it still feels like we're stuck in February, and thus the title of my challenge. I'm gone for about a week of this challenge. I have not decided whether I am going to eat at maintenance calories or deficit. Either way, I will track calories. My goals: Track calories Be at least 80% consistent in tracking and staying in calorie limit. Right now my problem with consistency is weekends when we eat out. I need to figure out how to handle that. I'm thinking I'm going to guestimate to the best of my ability and go with that number. Doing that will give me a good idea of the food amount I eat when I am out. I am not going to focus on weight loss this challenge. More on that below Planning: On Sunday or Monday morning, write out my list of things I want to accomplish for the week Each evening look at what the plan for the next day is Aim for 80% or more on of quest completion Workout: I have decided that I want to set strength goals this challenge My big goal is to do a full pistol. I am using the GMB's progression for the roll to pistols Here are my goals for that Roll to squat consistently without using my hands to assist, Be able to do 5 in a row: I am almost there roll to pistol on both legs Fitness plan The NF bodyweight work 3 x a week a zone 2 workout 3 time a week walking or gardening daily GMB Floor Loco 2 x a week if time and energy a sprint workout once a week, or as time allows Food Plan: I am switching to maintenance and taking a break from tracking calories. I still plan on using my knowledge of what I've gained to eat within a caloric maintenance. I will also practice my eating skills. I may track a bit, if I think it will be helpful. I may also do days with lower calorie goals, especially after weekends or days that were higher. I will weigh myself daily and record it. Once a week I will write down the average of the numbers. I will use that information to see how well I am doing at maintaining, and adjust if I need to. Creative goals: Make the wreath for my front door. I bought the supplies. I just need to make it Plant veggies in my garden Do some work on my scrapbook ( yes this is a vague goal, I just want to do a bit on it.
  17. Oh, bother. I was not planning to challenge in this round. I thought perhaps I would just lurk and cheer other folks on, because I don't really have a lot going on except "keep doing what I'm already doing." But having accountability and friends to cheer is always good and there are a few things that I ought to probably bother about Walk like Eeyore Walk for 15 minutes every day. Ideally in the evening, with dog. On days that schedule or weather makes that impractical, around the campus at lunchtime or even around the inside of the large academic building. I'm depressed, have been for a while, and I didn't even realize it until I started throwing pity parties for myself about things that simply didn't warrant them. Walking helps. And it's spring, generally nice weather (wicked humid, but Β―\_(ツ)_/Β― ), and I have a walk-friendly neighborhood and a beautiful walking path around the campus. Bounce like Tigger Nothing fancy here. Keep doing IS 3 or 4 days a week. There's a fair bit of jumping in IS. Eat like Rabbit A salad a day. I have vegetable ... issues. I don't eat nearly enough of them. I feel much better when I do eat enough of them. There are some I even like. But the easiest and surest way for me to get a reasonable amount of vegetation into my bod is salad, which I both like and find easy and convenient to make. That's enough for now.
  18. The hot, muggy air makes it hard for me to continue trekking through the jungle. Brushing aside the tall brush, I continue my trek toward the faint glimmer of water I see far off. Concerned about alligators, I keep a wary eye out. As I get closer, I can see the water. What I was hoping was a river is really only a swamp. Edging closer to the edge, I look around, trying to spot the spring. For centuries, there have been rumors that hidden in this jungle is the mystical fountain of youth. From it's water spring forth water said to give youth and vitality to all who drink from it. But all I see is murky water. I squat at the edge of the swamp, silent, listening to see if I hear anything. I tilt my head, is that the sound of water bubbling? Following the sound, I walk away from the swamp. I find a small spring with water bubbling up Could this be the spring? It sure doesn't look like much. Taking the glass container out of my backpack, I fill it up with the water. I take a sip of the water. It tastes good, refreshing my parched throat. Then I wait. Do I feel different? Nope. Perhaps the fountain was just a legend. I don't know when exactly it happened. It wasn't all at once. Just sort of gradual. It seemed that day by day I was feeling more energetic. Able to get more done. I enjoyed going for walks, and working in the garden. Little by little, I felt I was getting stronger. First I could do one pull up, and then another. I enjoyed using my muscles, and seeing what I could accomplish. I was more limber. I could squat, or sit on the ground when I wanted. I enjoyed eating healthy foods. Could it be that it really wasn't a legend after all? Maybe there was a Fountain of Youth and I had discovered it? Challenge goals: Food: Track on MFP- even if I am not going to make my daily goal Hit calorie goal Strength- keep working on NF bodyweight 3 times a week Cardio 3 x a week rowing zone 2, or maybe walk, running as the weather improves walking. trying for most days 10,,000 (yes,I know most is very non specific, I'm just using my judgement here, if I have time and the weather isn't awful ,walk, if it doesn't happen, no guilt) spring- running or rowing, about once a week, but it may be only once every other week Flexibility Floor Loco or Mobility with GMB I'm also trying to do a lot of yardwork, so no real goal for amount of days, just use wisdom and try and get some in as time allows Life_ Daily quest list- goal is to get 80% done Weekly quest list- I have so many things I want to get done this spring. A few big yard working projects. I need to decorate my guest bedroom. And scrapbook. Plus, just normal life stuff. Hopefully a weekly quest list will help me focus and conquer!
  19. My usual pattern: Start Day One, Zero Week with excitement! and planz! and energy! and motivation! Sometimes even with some version of the fancy tracker systems that some of my nerdfriends use so beautifully! Zero week and part of week one: ^all of the above^ still in place, doing all the things I said I was gonna do, posting regularly, keeping up with several other Nerds' challenges and cheering along, whoo-hoo look at me go!!! Week 1 / 2 ... realize that it is all just too much, scrap some of the goals, get distracted by other new ideas, ixnay the fancy tracking chart, taper off posting here and cheering for my fellow Nerds, basically completely wander off path. End of week five, wake up and say "whoa ... wow ... is that over already?!? Oops." Not optimal. Now I'm going to try something else. Just. One. Goal. One. And it is this. *** Bodyweight strength training at least 3 days/week *** I'm not even specifying a workout because it will change soon(ish). I'm up to workout 35 of 43 of GMB Elements, and when that is done I'm going to do ... something else. Β―\_(ツ)_/Β― The candidates (all also GMB programs, as I own them, like them, and have had success with them) Integral Strength (probable) Floor Loco Mobius We'll see. No particular theme. No fancy tracker. Just do a thing, and then accountabiliatize about it here when I've done it. (Or not done it.) My about me/intro:
  20. Quest: Develop physical autonomy to move through daily life without pain Side Quests: Reinvigorate faith; re-establish writing habit w/out pressure to produce fiction on demand Allies: Regular and consistent accountability; goals that are so small it is easier to do them than not do them until the habit forms; ADHD meds; journaling guides Mentors: GMB programs: Elements, Resilience, and Recovery; assorted journaling prompts and guides Gatekeepers: rheumatologist; prescribing psychiatrist Antagonists: Perfectionism; ADHD; chronic pain; easy availability of non-satisfying dopamine 'quick fixes' I Am Finding my Core: add this 5 minute core routine or this one to the end of my workout at least 3x per week I Value Spiritual Growth: replace games on my phone with scripture reading during 15 minute light therapy in morning routine I Value Creativity: open my current short story every day, before settling in to watch YouTube videos or play iPad games. Seriously, that's it. Just open it, look it over, acknowledge that it is. If I choose to then write more, great. If not, at least I am not actively avoiding it and creating ridiculous anxiety around a file on my computer. I Value Peace: 10 minutes of journaling/day. I have been collecting underpants with journaling/self reflective books and prompts. 10 minutes per day (as regular part of evening routine) can include, but is not limited to: Exercises from Your Head is a Houseboat: A Chaotic Guide to Mental Clarity Pages from Burn After Writing Free-form stream of consciousness writing Recap of the day/gratitude notes in bullet journal Scripture meditation thoughts I Value Connection: Check in here for accountability at least 5x/week Tracker Core: πŸ”² πŸ”² πŸ”² πŸ”² πŸ”² πŸ”² πŸ”² Spirit: πŸ”² πŸ”² πŸ”² πŸ”² πŸ”² πŸ”² πŸ”² Creativity: πŸ”² πŸ”² πŸ”² πŸ”² πŸ”² πŸ”² πŸ”² Peace: πŸ”² πŸ”² πŸ”² πŸ”² πŸ”² πŸ”² πŸ”² Connection: πŸ”² πŸ”² πŸ”² πŸ”² πŸ”² πŸ”² πŸ”²
  21. I'm still in more of a celebrate Holiday mode than buckle down and get stuff done , but the challenge has started, so I'm here ! My big challenge that I've set for myself is to complete level 18 on the NF journey by year end. I'm on level 14. I don't know how much the difficulty level ramps up each level, but that seem do-able. I already have a habit of working out. So just keep doing that. I'm also doing NF Floor Loco (a short extension of Elements) rowing, walking,NF mobility, staff training Those are extras and just fit in as time allows. "NO I WILL DO THEM ALL"!! - ahem forgive the Ranger brain take over- really they aren't requirements just various ways to get cardio and movement in. The other big goal is to track calories. My goal is to have between 1,600 and 1,850 calories a day and track on MFP. The life goal is to be a person that uses time efficiently in the morning. I've made progress in that area. I have established a Bible reading habit, I drink a glass of water, and then I empty the dishwasher. But then I get sucked into the computer time warp and waste too much time. My goal is to start workout preferably at 10 am, but no later than 10 :15. I also want to get back into the habit of making weekly and daily list to do. Because it is the new year, I decided to work on a new way to track. My big problem with tracking stuff is I just plain forget. I bought this cool tracker. Amazon.com : Habit Tracker Calendar - Daily, Weekly & Monthly Goal Tracking Planner, Floral Journal Notepad with Spiral Bound & Hanger - To-Do List, Undated 12 Months, 8"x10" - Juccybe Collection : Office Products I will hang it on my wall, where I can easily see it. Besides the calorie tracking goal, I also plan to track Bible memory, 10 minutes a day on a creative project, and10 minutes a day reading my non fiction book. I also bought this for my daily/weekly tracker. Amazon.com: Weekly Planner Pad for Women , Planning Pad, 6.7"x9.8 58" Undated Tear Off Sheets, Organizer, Productivity Tracker for Organizing Goals, Tasks, Ideas, Notes, To Do Lists, Office Organization : Everything Else I plan on taping it to a cupboard door so I can easily spot it. I also updated my NF Epic Quests. Now I have points I can earn and check off. The only problem is I don't usually go to that site, so I may forget about it.. We shall see. Not sure if this works for everyone else, but here is my NF quest page My Character (nerdfitness.com) I included creative endeavors on there too. All right, let's start 2022 with a bang
  22. Oh look, I'm doing this thing during 0-week. Most excellent! It's almost like my life is falling into some semblance of order. Almost. Y'all what been around a while should know that it never lasts. The big thing that's causing me to change is that I'm dealing with some ongoing gluteal pain that's responding to stretches and home treatment, which is why I'm not going in for PT just yet. It's mostly okay, but there have been some times where it's got to be a bit much. Like, on my recent drive to Gatlinburg, I basically spent 5.5 hours sitting in the car and it got pretty painful, to the point that it actually impacted my mobility until I was able to stretch out some. Also, I'm a little dissatisfied with my current training regimen. For those just tuning in, I've been using Pavel's strength-endurance program The Quick and the Dead for my base and been doing that 3 times a week. For the other four days of the week, I've been rolling 4D20 and scheduling random work and rest days based on the results. Work days have morphed to mean the GMB vitamin program (15 minutes) plus another thing, generally skipping rope or Turkish Get Ups. There are some other minor add-ons based on my specific situation, but even so, everything's done rather remarkably fast and I'm glad. Believe it or not, I actually really like this way of doing things. I think my prior drive to "work every day" was based on old programming principles or else were based in some unaddressed insecurities that I've been working to meet and manage, and I feel like compliance is super-easy and I'm totally not burnt out. But it's not perfect. My dice, it turns out, are very generous to me, and I tend to roll a lot of rest days. (oh no, what a nightmare. πŸ™„) And based on both recommendations and prior experience, I tend to give skipping rope priority, because if I'm only getting one work day a week, it feels right to give it there. What that's working out to is less time with TGUs. And why does that matter? Well, in the short term, TGUs are to grappling what skipping rope is to striking: a kind of fundamental full body movement with a ton of carryover and benefit to the sport. I don't want to leave that benefit on the table. In the long term, I'm going to want to get strong in TGUs because one day I'm going to want to try to build some muscle with kettlebells and pretty much every source I can find on the matter aims for low reps and heavy weight. Enter the Kettlebell, the Ur-program in such matters, requires a 32kg swing and a 32kg TGU before allowing adherents to begin. What's a boy to do? Well, I feel like the answer to this problem lies in this program here, which I've referenced before. You might notice that he combines Quick and the Dead (QD) with another program, Simple and Sinister (SS), which is a swing-TGU focused program. His setup involves two SS sessions and one QD session per week of training. I think there's something to this for me, so that's what I'm gonna do. As to the other 4 days of the week? Well, there's GMB like I said, which at this point is mostly about movement quality and skipping rope. I did, however, buy their recovery programs, and I feel like I could be using those rest days to actually dig into recovery work and also work on flexibility and stretching. So. Enough navel-gazing. Let's get to the brass tacks. Goal 1: Training Seems appropriate to make a training goal again since I'm switching things around. Also, I have come pretty close to some compliance issues recently, and I want to smooth that out if I can. Goal 2: Meditation This was a struggle last time. I got toward getting better at it, but I really feel like I do better with a meditation habit, and I want to cement this in place. So. We will remain at 8 minutes this time. Goal 3: Clean Goal remains because I've still got a serious lack of floor space and a serious surplus of dirty surfaces. I'm getting better at both, but that's breeding some complacency, and I know me too well to let myself off the hook on this just yet. The prior arrangement of cleaning and moving a box per week (as a boss) worked good. No reason to mess with it now, beyond expanding what surfaces I clean. And that's that. Should be good.
  23. Hey everyone! Getting on late at night because somehow it worked out to being the best time to do the thing. Big changes happened in the past week. I had originally meant to reward myself with rash guards for BJJ, but midway through, I 1) had the chance to change to earlier hours, and 2) saw a cool gi design go up that I wanted more. I still feel quite rewarded for my efforts last challenge; it's just that I had a last-minute chance to take a deal that turned out to be closer to what I wanted. This has the neat side effect of allowing me to use rash guards as a reward again. How fortuitous. Um, also, accidentally got the chance to show some character growth. Saturday I went to a party with my friend group. One of us got a little too drunk for my liking and I slipped and got a little too harsh calling him on it. We didn't come to shouting at each other or blows or anything, but I really hurt him in a way I didn't think I could. I had the chance to talk it over with him this morning, though, and we were able to patch things up. I say it was a growth thing because the last time I wound up in a situation like this was with my Ex and I botched it. I didn't botch this time. I grant you, it's not trying to salvage a romantic relationship, but I think it's got enough in common to count. Hence the title of the challenge. Everything's crazy and up in the air and I'm going back to the office in about a month and some change and just... yeah. It's a lot right now. So we're rolling with it. Goal 1: Meditate I'm up to 8 minutes now, which is great, but I'm not sitting consistently, and that's not great. Need to fix that. Goal 2: Clean Car troubles are managed enough that I can get after getting boxes o' stuff out of my place. But I need to clean the car first. This is going to go alongside my old cleaning goal from before, because now that my sinks are reliably clean, I want to start expanding out onto regularly cleaning other surfaces too. So, the way this will work is that it'll have a daily component build up over the course of the week. However, in order for a given week's total to count, I have to defeat a mini-boss, defined as one seat-section of the car (first couple weeks) and then a box a week for the rest of the challenge. Goal 3: Eating So, I've basically crept over into obesity per my body fat percentage as run via the Navy formula. I know for a fact that my macros are fine and even my daily expenditures are fine, but I'm letting social eating be an excuse to indulge and it's getting in the way of the results I want. While I'll be tracking this as a daily, the real goal is to focus on "leaving things behind" - in other words, if I go out to eat, I come back home and drink a protein shake for my vitamins instead of picking up 'healthy' indulgences at the grocery store. With that in mind, as I'm posting early Monday morning: Goal 1: 0/1 Goal 2: 1/1 Bosses: 0/5 Goal 3: 0/1 Aw, look, it's not as bad as it was last time. I can only imagine how well it'll go!
  24. A day late, but not a dollar short. Yet. Howdy, everyone, hope it's been well with you! I'm sorry I'm late coming in. I had a hard time coming up with a challenge because, well, if I'm honest, I'm content with where I am right now. I'm well-healed, back on the mats, I'm engaging with friends and asserting my boundaries when I need to, and... well, I mean. Life is pretty good! I mean, beyond all the ways in which it isn't, but, you know, that's life. Still, there are advancements to be made. I'm keeping some spaces clean, but I want to clean out more, and I know what I gotta do next from there. And, I need to get moving on my writing again. TBH, that was just two things, and I had a really hard time coming up with a third. And then my dear sweet sci-fi friend decided to fill the hole in his soul with a Tough Mudder in Baltimore in a few months. He needs a team, and I wasn't going to let him go alone. Or at least, that's how I'm operating right now, because he's not sounding too terribly committed to it right now. Either way, I figure if I'm careful about it, putting on some miles won't hurt me any. But that's something I have to do, which means I lose one of my days for rolling dice. Boooo. But OTOH, the dice-rolling mechanic is really nice for a way to randomize my off-days, and I've liked it a lot. So. I have three goals. Goal 1: Clean. Keep my sink clear and expand it to cleaning the sink surfaces themselves. They're kinda grody. Get 'em clean and keep 'em that way. Goal 2: Write. Surgery and recovery in the last month really knocked me off my course. I'm itching to get back to this. I'm cleaning up some planning stuff and restructuring the story a bit, which I think is going to clean things up rather nicely, actually. Goal 3: Train. Almost seems like a gimme, but, well, I got something on the horizon now, and that needs to be met. At this point, the constants are Quick and the Dead sessions 3 times a week, and on one day a week I'm going to go for a ruck. Tough Mudder recommends being able to run/walk 7 miles, so I figure if I can clear that under load, I'll be good to go. Truthfully, this goal could be called "Ruck," but I want to go keep it consistent in terms of scoring with the other goals. Why, you ask? Because I want to try my hand at rewarding myself again this time. I may have just cursed myself with this, but doggonnit, everyone else gets to have rewards and stuff, and I want some too. Since I'm not realistically going to get around to getting boxes moved any time soon (having to get my car troubles managed still, although they're coming along very well), I want to look into doing something else that'll help my training. Looking at my school's schedule, I see that they do no-gi training in addition to gi training for grappling. But in order to do that, you have to have a rash guard, for hygiene and safety purposes. So. If I manage an 80% success rate overall, I will reward myself with not one, but two freaking rash guards. Because that's what my schedule works out to having time for right now. So this means that out of a 105 total possible points, I need to score 84 or better. And how'd I start off? 1: 0/1 2: 0/1 3: 0/1 Yeah, it ain't exactly auspicious. I blame the holiday. Went home to see my folks and ate good food and spent the day chilling out rather than getting after my goals. Oh well. It's not about the start; it's about the finish.
  25. Is challenge time, yes? Very well, then. So this looks like another clean up challenge, and I've not done those very well in the past, so it's worth asking why I came back to this. I would answer that things are different this time and that I've got more investment in cleaning things up. After completing the GMB Elements program, I got into Vitamin because I wanted to focus more on bodily control versus some of the other stuff. Vitamin is best understood, really, as a 'intro to tumbling' course. I like it a lot. But it requires a lot of room, and a lot of my space is taken up with useless objects that have really been needing to be disposed of for a while now. In order to facilitate this, I'm allowing myself a reward if I get the thing done: a double-end bag. Astute observers will note that this is not the double-end bag I linked to last time I mentioned anything about this; the reason is that I found a local outfitter who does this kind of thing. I've bought from them in the past. They have good-quality product and I like to keep the money local if/when I can. Only catch is, a double-end bag requires a lot of space to work because of the way it bounces and moves, and I'm going to need room to move around it, so. The only way the reward makes sense is if I complete the challenge, but it's also something that I want. So... yeah. So, I'm going to have to clean things up. But there's more to cleanliness than just the physical thing itself. There's also cleanliness in sleep and cleanliness of mind, among other things, and these are things I need to work on too. The set-up, then, is as follows: 1) One Box Of Stuff A Week Exactly what it says on the tin. I think I could probably do more than this - and I may have to, even - but I want to make compliance as clear and as simple as I can. In service to this, there's a sub-goal - keep my kitchen sink clear of dishes. I can do this on the daily, and have been for about a week or so, and I'm surprised at the itch it builds to actually get things done. I say, as I do absolutely nothing else. 2) Bedtime by 01:00 This is a longer-term goal. With 1/2 vaccinations done for me and with my loved ones being vaccinated or else exposed to the point that they're apathetic, I'm going to be able to return to the mats in a meaningful way sooner rather than later. I'm going to be returning to the MMA place I was going to before. They've changed their schedule somewhat and they're allowing for no-gi grappling in addition to the gi stuff and the striking stuff. Only catch is, it's early - like, 18:00 as opposed to 19:00 or 19:30. I don't get out of work now until 18:00, and I won't be able to do anything about that for a while yet. But, I can get to bed earlier, and I can get used to being up earlier too. Worst case, I just get some extra sleep. 3) Meditate 6 Minutes A Night 5 minutes was dope. 6 will be doper. And, that should do it. I'll log training here as well, because why not? I've been keeping up with the Apple A Day kettlebell program, and in order to keep my sanity, I've allowed myself to start rolling a D8 to figure if I'm doing 1 or 2-arm swings that day. My longer-term approach is to eventually work in kettlebell snatches and Dan John's Armor Building Complex, but the hold-up right now is that I haven't got the point in Simple and Sinister where I'm doing TGUs with the 8-kg bell yet. That's the neat thing about Simple and Sinister - you get a good base of GPP and also get good at the fundamentals of kettlebells, so it can be used to limit yourself to stuff you can actually reasonably handle. This is something I need help with too. And, uh. Yeah. I think that should actually do it. In life news, I'm looking at trying to do the work of building a Tenant's Union around here after my landlord decided to get rid of my (admittedly shitty) neighbor under sketchy pretenses. Because she doesn't deserve that, and also, it's a gatdang pandemic. Should be interesting.
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