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  1. Hello friends! As I start typing here, Tango Argentine is blasting through my speakers, making me move my feet and putting a smile on my face... Astor Piazolla is just the beginning of my quest for a joyful life amidst a killer virus trying to get me before I can be vaccinated. Apocalypse life is hard, so I dedicate this challenge to joy, ease and fun. My history of challenges here is pretty mixed. after kicking some serious ass after my spinal surgery (getting my broken behind back to CrossFit) last fall I kinda struggled. Every time I felt good another body part broke... and after starting from zero for the umpteenth time I finally surrendered to depression. This is no way to live! guys, Im aiming for bright spots in the day and the healing power of expanding my mind: There are a couple of things that make me happy by being inspired. a trip through music, books, podcasts, nature, recipes, being with the few people I can see right now... everyday I will find one thing that makes me feel inspired and happy. if you have visited my threads before you know that I like to make new goals every week. I will also stick to this system this challenge. Once my body and psyche agree with me that its now time to level up Ill add stuff. For the first week its just about being inspired at least once a day. ..... just like last Friday , when the most beautiful woman on my street came to do my hair and makeup amidst multiple bottles of bubbly. This middle-aged lesbian was truly in heaven!
  2. ¸„.-•~¹°”ˆ˜¨ Health & Happiness Are Hard ¨˜ˆ”°¹~•-.„¸ Wherein the Cracked_Belle Un-Dies 𝔽𝕚𝕣𝕤𝕥 𝕒 𝕎𝕒𝕣𝕟𝕚𝕟𝕘, 𝕐'𝕒𝕝𝕝 I am diagnosed with a lot crap that makes life hard — manic depression, C-PTSD, OSFED (eating disorder), OCD, anxiety, some chronic pain, and other crap. these aspects of me and my life are going to come up in my journey to getting back on track with my health and happiness. I'll try to be sensitive to triggers, include warnings such as this where needed, and use spoilers when necessary. but this is my "cover my butt" warning. thanks in advance for you understand. life is difficult; but I find obtaining Health and Happiness is even harder. as aforementioned, I have some mental and physical ailments that complicate the normal struggles of life even further. recently, my depression and my eating disorder have been soul-consuming. it's time to end that. I used to be a rather active member of Nerd Fitness in its early days. the life happened and I left for a while. well, I'm back; and hopefully for even longer this time. I'd like to get my life and health in order, lol. as follows are my current Goals for this upcoming Challenge. I, of course, reserve the right to adjust them as time progresses and I see what's going to work for me and what isn't. Get Down to 125 Pounds (ideally by 08/24/2020) Do a Daily Workout weightlifting on MTWRFA everyday: warm-ups and cool-downs MR: upper body — push-up, bicep curl, bent-over row TF: lower body — squat, strait-leg deadlift, calf raise AW: mix/misc — mountain climber, tensor curl, flexor curl, donkey kick cycling everyday AMWR: ~5 mi (2 circuits) URF: ~2.5 mi (1 circuit) Adhere to Caloric Schedule [TW — Eating Disorders] TO BE UPDATED to a point wherein I'm not slowly starving myself gets tweaked and Friday before depending on plans for the week Goal Average Kcal/Day: <700 Sat: 1,200 Sun: 1,200 Mon: 0 Tue: 1,200 Wed: 0 Thu: 1,200 Fri: 0 Log Monthly Body Measurements take body measurements at start of every month Log Daily Metrics continue to complete the daily Metrics spreadsheet, filling it in as completely as possible Make Next Week's Food Plan every Friday, make the caloric and cooking food plan for the following week (as starts on then ext day of Sat) Manage My Mental Health Do Daily AM Prep complete morning preparations for the day, every day Do Daily PM Review complete evening review of the day, every day Complete Mood Form Daily complete the mood tracking form at least once every day Track Meds track all medications and (certain) supplements consumed every day Become a Professional Writer [to be tweaked soon] Find a Career Counselor/Coach solidify a working relationship with a career counselor/career Resume Being Creative Write for One Hour per Week work on any writing project for a total of at least one hour a week Be Artsy for One Hour per Week do any artistic work for a total of at least one hour each week
  3. Tzippi Tastes the Vinegar If you've read the Tao of Pooh (and if you haven't, consider it!), you might remember the allegorical image referenced at the beginning of the Vinegar Tasters, in which three men taste from the same vat of vinegar, one tasting sourness, one bitterness, and one sweetness. These three are representations of the three major religions/philosophies of China, Confucianism, Buddhism, and Taoism. The vinegar is life, and the men each taste it differently. Tai Chi, which I have begun studying and is a hugely positive practice in my life, is largely based on Taoist philosophy. I'm not going to get very deep into Confucianism, Buddhism, or Taoism, as I am at best a tourist and at worst completely ignorant of them. Instead, I am going to use my battered copy of The Tao of Pooh to look at what I want to do in my life, as I get a little deeper into my goals, study of Tai Chi, and continue to grow and refine. The "theme" of this challenge is halfway between using the three vinegar tasters as my models and metaphor, and using the characters from the Hundred-Acre Woods as the same. Taking my inspiration from the inimitable @sarakingdom and @Mistr, I am building on last challenge's success by adding tiny incremental goals to enhance my new habits, rather than adding a million new ones. “Rivers know this: there is no hurry. We shall get there some day.” Body and mind - * Continue to support my Tai Chi practice with daily work, whether class, Tai Chi practice, or some other exercise. * Once per week, one weight workout or long walk/hike. Could be body weight, or a hammer. Poetry and Hums - * Continue with daily (more often nightly) five-minute+ meditation. Got Calm subscription, starting with the Pooh meditations. * Using my MyOmer App, count the omer every evening. * Once per week, one longer meditation. Try different stuff, report and review here. I may start with metta meditation: Rumbly in my Tumbly - * Three servings of vegetables a day. * Plant more stuff in the garden. Herbs? Will it get warm enough for cukes, zucchs, and tomatoes?
  4. I don't think I have ever been this excited to start a new year or a new challenge! 2017 was difficult and January was useful to take stock of where I am and what I want to do with my life. The answer is: do more of the things which make me happy, judge less, and be healthy. (Also, swear less.) I will try to maintain this momentum throughout 2018, so I am here setting up the basis for all the 2018 challenges to come! The quests themselves will change, but these 3 goals will largely remain the same (unless I reach one of them mid-year, then I will change!). It took a long time for me to identify these three priorities, and I intend to pursue them fiercely! I am falling short of a metaphor or a picture of someone I want to emulate. Because this is the year where I reclaim MY life and live it the way I want, without too much interference from others. So, let's say that I want to be, as often as possible, as happy as I am on this picture (or happier!). This is me and my sister at a k-pop concert last year - few other moments were as happy as that in our lives! (I am on the left, in case someone is wondering ^_^) Ultimate goals for 2018: 1- Be healthy, and not be ashamed of my body, specifically lose 22 kg 2- Stop judging readily and be more accepting of others and myself, specifically stop putting myself down 3- Use my free time to do things which I enjoy, specifically DO things with my hands on top of having intellectual hobbies For February, let's start with basics and establish good habits! Quest 1: Establish healthy living habits! - Note what I eat every day - No need to try to limit what I eat yet, just take note of patterns, feelings when I eat a bag of M&Ms (or want to) and be mindful of what I eat - Try and sleep 7 hours per day (this means in bed by 11:15pm, 10:45pm on Thursdays!) (I am currently around 6 hours, so 7 should not be impossible!) - Exercise a little every day (I currently exercise 5 days a week, but I am inclined to rest and not do anything physical on weekends) Quest 2: Flex my non-judgmental muscles! - Try to catch myself when I am being judgmental and instead try to understand others' point of view - Listen to Judgment Detox - Write down 1 thing to be grateful of every day Quest 3: Try out new things and see what makes me happy - Try 1 new restaurant or 1 new dish (cooking a new recipe is okay too) per week - Move furniture around a buy a piano and realize my life-long dream to actually learn how to play - Start my own online shop selling stickers and trading cards Side quest: stop swearing. Method: when I am about to swear, use another word. If I already swore, repeat the sentence without the swear word. Continue until extinction of swear words or sheer exhaustion. I feel like I am waking up from a loooooong slumber where I was on the sidelines, on the outside looking in. I learnt a lot, but did not DO much, because I was afraid of failing, because I should not, because I did not know how. I want to let go of this feeling and embrace failing, and be more active in life! More details tomorrow so I don't make this post too long!
  5. AERI AND THE PATH OF LIFE This challenge is focused on gradually setting down a habit for some of the basic elements of a balanced life. These are mostly day-start activities. DAILY: Maintenance: 5 min ; wakeup alarm @8:55 - (5 * cd) Meditate: 5 min + cd Activate: 5 min warmup + 5 min cooldown ; gym 3/week Declutter: 5 min + cd Inventory: self aware, take note of actions and week's chosen behavior. (cd = challengeday) WEEKLY: Buy groceries Budget plan Simplify mission path Choose week's behavior to work on. .
  6. Lucky fire dragon counts the good things Starting a log here for reflection and a place to keep going in between challenges or anytime really as I struggled with my challenges this last year (2016) and want to play a bit around for a while. Currently I am looking to re-establish strong workout and healthy eating habits keep up the good work attitude, being pro-active and less procrastinating keep up meditation habits remind myself often to take pressure and judgement off myself in order to appreciate the good there already is and in order to LIVE (happily) have enough structure to not have to even think about working out or not, just do it have so much fun with exercise I look forward to it balancing work, family and fitness in a way that makes me happy feel good in my body, treat it with kindness, have it be my strongest, bestest friend there is probably a ton more, but this is enough for now In 2016 I had big changes in my work life and it affected me more than I wanted to see, but now I can honestly say, it's all good and valuable. I neglected any workouts for long enough to feel like a total beginner again and that, too, is not a bad thing. I can start again, but stronger than 3 years ago and kinder, too. I realized that in the end, it is all about the joy. Without it giving me joy I won't do it for long and it won't be worth it either. So I switched from the L2+ courses at my pole studio back to Level 2 and yayyy, joy is back I go for walks instead of running and am surprised how much I enjoy it. I do some yoga when it's easy to fit in and do it slooooowly with conscious pleasure of a fully alive body, no matter how far I can stretch or how long I can hold. I love Erich Schiffmann's idea of "flirting with your limits", playing with the minimum you have to do in order to make your body work some at all and the maximum beyond which it would be too much. In between mental lows hit me and my mind tells me blah-stories about everything I suck at and it's way too easy to fall for it. I used to then make either massive plans to improve ALL THE THINGS or crumble and do nothing at all. Both didn't work very well Now I switch rather to larger perspective, breathe, get back to here and now and wonder "what would feel good to do right now?" "what would be a kinder thought?" "what would be a healthy choice for right now?" PLEASE remind me of these, when I forget again!!!! Also really helpful is counting my blessings and former victories. Feel good things make me feel good, who would have thought I will let the things I like guide me home again and again... Here is a list, so that they are easier to find dancing spinning around the pole or hanging upside down headstand and handstands (when I dare) going for walks hot baths music singing silence empty email inbox clean house sweating it all out fresh clear water a nice cup of tea counting my blessings laughing kids laughing coloring in embroidery funny stories yoga to be added onto Over the last months I finally got a good work rhythmn and conquered ancient habits of procrastination that I often struggle with on any work stuff that doesn't have a fixed appointment. It's still challenging but much better, because I saw I could do it. What helped was discovering beeminder and connecting it with my to-dos on habitrpg. Beeminder would charge me actual money if I derailed too much and hubby would see it on our joint account and I realllllllly didn't want that as that would have been super embarrassing. So there it is. But it worked! I got a whole lot of old projects finally finished and it feels amazing. Next goal on it is daily mini workouts to bring back a healthy habit without overambitious planning: https://www.beeminder.com/gluecksdrache/daily10 My daily 10 10 push ups 10 chin ups (can be from standing on tip toe or even negatives from stool) 10 goblet squats 10 leg lifts from hanging First 4 days were HARD Day 1 I had to do the push ups with feet wide apart (but elbows tucked in) and over 2 sets of 5 - managed only 1 chin up from standing, the rest were like halfway until I resorted to negatives from a stool - the goblet squats worked well with 8kg kettlebell, so yay on that - the leg lifts were super tough with straight legs, so I changed to tuck lift, then straight lower down Day 2 went better with 2 chin ups from standing on tip toe Day 3 the push ups were done in 1 set (woot) but with elbows slightly out and feet hip width apart, 6 chin ups from standing over several sets (woot) Day 4 (today) push ups over 2 sets again, but 7 chin ups from standing over several sets, yayyy Did it first thing in the mornings and found that great, because I get thirsty and start the day with a good dose of fresh water, I feel awake and satisfied by having that tiny workout Daily weigh in Another thing I want to keep going for a while as it tells me where I am in a way that shows tendencies and doesn't just soothe me (if I hit a light day and feel oh, I'm fine) or shock me (if I hit a heavy day and feel aaaaaaaah what is this?!!!) but more honestly tells me where I currently am. Right now I am fluctuating between 65 and 68 kg, which is not a happy place for me, but I'll have to embrace it for now and use it for motivation instead of beating myself up about it. Goal is 62kg, but even 64 would already be awesome again. Pole and Yoga My third current fitness goal has its own accountability due to my weekly challenge with my youngest daughter She counts all her minutes spent on studying for school (besides homework) and I could all my minutes on strength training, pole and yoga done at home (not at class). If I only do my daily 10, it won't do for this, so I HAVE to do more in order to compete with her. Prices are high: I get some cool leggings for each week won (have 5 leggings on their way in the mail to me, so that will last a while) youngest gets favorite schleich toys (with cost limit) for each week won I've been goofing around with what could be fun ways to keep it simple and easy to go to (like my daily 10) and played "the floor is lava" - having to stay on the pole for the duration of one song and training spin after spin for another song. Still takes me 30 minutes as I need to warm up first before being able to do anything and do want 5 min stretches after, but 30 minutes should be doable more often and it was great fun. Once classes start again by January 12th, I'll have more detailed things to train... So these are my three things to update on at the moment and I appreciate any extra accountability. Please shout at me when I neglect too much, because it really, really serves my happiness to do these! Thank youuuuuuu Here is some yoga fun on the pole to sum up for now, that turned out to be quite strenuous and good form training: would love to create a pole sun salutation variation and already have some ideas, but I'll have to regain some more strength again first .... motivation
  7. GREETINGS REBELLION!!I am Wraiven but those whom know me well call me Mitch Jnr. I have been working on leveling up my life and developed my quest log in a way to grow, not only for me but for the benefit of those all over the world. Since I can remember I have always been a very giving person and gathered joy from tasks that not only helped me be a better man, but also to help others grow too. Since my Father (Mitch Snr) passed away started really struggling with depression and anxiety in recent years and it's truly effected my growth and attitude towards what I always believed of myself. It could be chemical or it could just be my mind trying to avoid the pain of failing... But that's not gonna happen! Since joining the Rebellion I decided to dedicate a whole year to trying to change some lives and it's really had an Impact on me too.17 has always been my favourite number soooo I decided in 2017 I was going to do a Charity Challenge called 'Songs and Smiles' to help raise funds for Kids with Cancer, Mental Illness and Poverty/Famine. This requires me to do a song a day to bring smiles and provoke thought/nostalgia every single day and then people could share and possibly donate if they could. A simple premise but alot of people seem to like it. So far we have raised over $5000 and had 250,000 views on Youtube.My Dad always wanted to help kids with cancer because when he had it he always beleived he had lived and they deserved a chance to aswell, so I am doing this all in his memory and I hope all of the rebellion can join me too and become a SMILE SAVIOUR!DONATE: http://bit.ly/2iRw2vO GOFUNDME: http://bit.ly/2jXoQ5f FACEBOOK: http://bit.ly/2hFp6UY TWITTER: @MitchJnrMass <3 Mitch Jnr
  8. Hello fellow Assassins (and other visitors!) ! My name is Asuka and I fell off the wagon a few months ago. I was unhappy at work, unhappy in life and eating cake to make it all get better. Did it work? Of course not! So I am now changing the way I work (and very soon changing jobs!), and ditching the cake to focus on making MYSELF (and not other people) happy. We all have things that make us happy when we do them and things that make us happy once they are done. So the goal of this challenge is to do enough of the first ones to "store" happiness to do the second ones and be doubly happy! And of course to get healthier while doing so! I will focus on 4 key goals, 3 daily ones and 1 long term one. 1/ Nutrition: The goal is to get back to a place where my stomach is happy without countless amounts of food. It will take a few weeks for my stomach to stop complaining about the lack of cake, but I am ready to fight it to be healthier! Happy doing: Eating Happy having done: Writing down what I ate, Eating clean, Not eating too much My daily weapons will be: Writing down what I eat and counting weight watchers points. I will also emphasize healthy snacks (e.g., fruits, protein bars) over cake (I need to stop talking about cake!) My daily reward will be: Eating 1 treat worth no more than 4 points (160kcal) (can be accumulated) AFTER I had a clean day of eating. Clean day is defined by accurate tracking, below 25 points total, and listening to feelings of satiety. 2/ Fitness: The goal is to mix happy exercises and super efficient ones and get back to a place where it is not so difficult to lift weights (because the muscle to fat ratio is better). It should take a few weeks for my body to get used to lifting again, as long as I maintain a good training schedule. Happy doing: Dance!, Stretching, Isolation Happy having done: Weightlifting, Biking My daily weapons will be: A mix of cardio and weightlifting. 3 sessions of 30-45min of each per week, MWS for weights and TTF for biking. My daily reward will be: For cardio it is easy: watching video games videos while biking. Yoohoo! For weightlifting, ENDORPHIN and pure motivation to get started. Also Memes (see below). Also enough stretching to make sure I am not too sore. And for every session of weightlifting: 5 full minutes of pure pride in the very fact that I did it. No matter how hard it was when it should be easy or how light the weights when they should have been heavier. 5 minutes taken just to congratulate myself that I did lift my butt from the couch and lifted weights on top of it. 3/ Well-being: I want to have a more balanced life, where I don't let work take over life and depress me to no end (or the point where I eat cake). I need better habits of doing things for myself and be h happy with 80% of things done for others (also because they don't care so much it turns out). Happy doing: Sleeping, Taking it slow Happy having done: Having slept 8 hours (not 6!), Having cooked healthy meals, Meditation My daily weapons will be: A strict deadline to go to bed (without it, I am useless) - let's say 11:15pm, to get to 8 hours, and a strict rule of no more than 2 episodes of whatever series OR 1 movie My daily rewards will be: Feeling rested (and needing less coffee), having more time for self-care such as face masks, scrubbing, etc. 4/ Life: I want to have a clean look and feel in my apartment and do active things which I like, rather than be a drone and binge watch re-runs. Unfortunately, when I am tired or depressed (see #3 above), I don't feel like being active, and more like being passive. And then all of a sudden it is 8pm on Sunday and I just watched life instead of living it. NO MORE! Happy doing: Reading mangas, Reading novels, Building nanoblocks, meeting friends, Watching TV Happy having done: Cleaning and sorting through my books, Moving furniture, Not having spent 8 hours mindlessly watching re-runs on TV My daily and weekly weapons will be: A little at a time: cut down large activities into smaller pieces (e.g., 1 shelf instead of 1 full bookshelf to be sorted) to do them on a daily basis and planning: I will start blocking out time for "active fun". Not TV, no work, nothing else at these times. My daily and weekly rewards will be: Actually doing things I enjoy and seeing progress in the things I want done. Also, less feeling of guilt because I am not doing these things. These are my goals for the next five weeks. I will see how well I did. As I am going on a 4-day vacation over 2 weeks (Sat to Tues), I will do my best to comp for these days. I expect to walk a lot, so it should be okay fitness- and well-being-wise. For the rest, I will improvise! As for a reward for the whole challenge (5 weeks, which should also be the last weeks in my current job, yay!), I will invest (exact amount to be determined!) towards an improved wardrobe which I actually LIKE to wear! As usual, I will track everything in an excel file (boring details in a separate post!) and will do my best to post here 2-3 times per week to share my progress and get energy from all of you! And to all: good luck for your challenges as well!!
  9. Welcome to SPRING! As we stretch out of the darker season, let’s join together in gratitude. Science has shown that being actively grateful can have tremendous positive effects on our health and well being, and the more we study gratitude, the more benefits we find. The basic takeaway is very simple: Be thankful to be happy. “People who regularly practice gratitude by taking time to notice and reflect upon the things they're thankful for experience more positive emotions, feel more alive, sleep better, express more compassion and kindness, and even have stronger immune systems.” Being thankful, genuinely grateful for what we have, has an immediate and profound impact on our sense of well being. It even helps increase our financial balances, by making us less inclined to spend. “Grateful people report themselves as being less materialist and less envious. In particular, grateful people report being more willing to part with their possessions, more generous with them, less envious of the material wealth of others, less committed to the idea that material wealth brings happiness. Apparently, material success is not a very important factor in the happiness of highly grateful people.” Robert Emmons, author of Thanks!: How the New Science of Gratitude Can Make You Happier, shows that simply keeping a gratitude journal—regularly writing brief reflections on moments for which we’re thankful—can significantly increase well-being and life satisfaction. Let’s focus on gratitude this spring, and find balance at the equinox. Want to join in the fun? Post something you are grateful for and why it matters to you. Start today, and post at least one thing. Aim for one thing a day, but don’t let a missed day stop you from coming back and posting. Keep track of how many posts you made by number each successive post. We’re going to do this for the coming three weeks, so add the suffix “/21” to each number, so that we can keep it in context. I’ll post prompts along the way, but listen to your inner voice. People report that the continuity of gratitude and the depth of emotion are the real key to success here. So post away! At the end of the mini-challenge, we’ll talk about what you noticed, and what these insights have led to, if anything. !
  10. 2016 is over, and a lot has happened in my life. I have been away from NF for a while now, and I've never posted in the Druid forum before, so I don't think anyone here will know me. Anyway, Over the last year: I started working at a job I thought would be my dream job and ended up pretty terrible. I broke off a 6 year relationship with the guy I thought I wanted to marry because the only feeling I felt with him was resentment. All of of my friends have vanished from my life without a word. I was diagnosed with Major Depressive and Panic Disorders. I lost 20lbs from straight up just not eating or caring for myself. I've cried myself to sleep more often this last year than the entire rest of my life. Everything recently is unfamiliar territory. I am, more or less, alone. Without my friends or my ex, I ... barely know who I am. What do I like to do? What do I want to do? Everything is sort of scary and painful, especially the new things. 1) Gain Independence a) Find a New job Yes, I see the irony in this goal. But for focus, it's mainly about no longer relying on my parents, or my roommate to support myself. I want to live on my own by the end of the year. This goal is going to be about looking for a new job, something I will enjoy and I can pay my own way with. Job seeking is currently... hard. I have no idea what I am looking for and, again, everything new is scary and everything old is tainted with pain. b ) Save money Additionally, I've been pretty bad about my budget. I had one made, but I very rarely follow it, especially with the holidays just past, but I will work toward bringing it back under control. The real goal here will be to transfer $50 into savings every pay period, which means I have to be able to pay all my bills and have $50 left over. A near impossible task at the moment with my job. That's why these go hand in hand. c) Chores Keep up with my chores. I have an app that keeps track. Any day with overdue tasks is a no points day. 2) Endure the Hard Times a) Ask my therapist about anti-depressants I've ... been .. struggling. I meant to ask last week, but I chickened out at the last minute. I'm always happy to see her, so it's weird to be like, oh yeah also anti-depressants because I am actually doing terribly when I am on my own. I see her every other week, so I'll only get two chances to do this during the challenge. It'll be a pass fail kind of goal. b ) Reach out for help when feeling down Lately I've just been struggling through depressive episodes on my own. This is most true when they happen in the very early morning hours, say.. 3 or 4 am. I feel like I'm already worthless, why should I bother waking up the three people who still think I am worth talking to for this? But I know, they really do care about me, and if they are awake they will gladly help me through. After friend fallout occurred... and they are still left...they mean a lot to me and I think I am nervous about losing them for being annoying about depression. c) Find an outlet for depression This is really important to me. Finding something to do while I am depressed that isn't crying, staring at myself in a mirror and thinking about how much I hate myself, googling how to check myself into a mental hospital and ... well.. basically writing a suicide note. Ah. I've just gotta find something else to do to occupy my head. The hardest part, I know, is going to be actually doing the thing. Its one thing to say, when I feel depressed I will go for a walk, its another thing entirely to force myself to actually do it. Its hard enough to stand. 3) Be More Myself a) Try at least one new thing a week I'm not sure what I mean by this yet.... What qualifies as a new thing.. I'll work on it, but it feels important right now. b ) Try to make my inner self-image match my outer image I kind of want to learn to do my make up. I never learned. So for this goal, I will try to do one make up thing every other day. In the future, I would like to do a closet purge again. I would also like to get that lip piercing I want and the tattoos, but money goals come first. 4) Seek Happiness a) Indulge in at least one hobby a day /or/ spend time with people I care about This feels vital to me. It can be something as simple as playing a video game, or reading a book or comic, or Roleplay, or cooking, but it has to be an activity. Watching TV alone doesn't count. b ) Be mindful of the time I feel happy Just a goal, not really measurable, something to think about. When I'm happy, to take deep breath and let myself just be happy... no strings. Enjoy happiness, and realize that even though things are hard, there are good times. c) Write in a journal every day Nothing long, no novels, just how the day felt. Good? Depressing? Surprising? Short, no more than one page. 5) Move a) Find a practice I enjoy and will do. I quit my gym for money reasons, see goal 1, and I need something I can do at home that won't stress me out or hurt me. Previously Ive done yoga, but i cant seem to stick with it or I am just doing it for the skill of movement. I would love to dance, or something.. I dont know, maybe a martial art, maybe yoga, tai chi, something, maybe just go for a walk. Its related to finding myself goal, but i feel it deserves its own space.
  11. Because life this year felt like: (Yes. A friend and I have a thing where we describe life situations with poorly drawn dinosaurs.) Anyway. With all the over-scheduling and things constantly happening and lack of sleep and non-stop caffeinating and gym and dance and work and deadlines and... It feels lie I have no control over my own life, and then OH HI DEPRESSION*, MY OLD FRIEND I've been basically feeling like shit for the last few weeks. The last time this happened, there were some major (and scary) life changes that I needed to do, and I did them. Things became better pretty much instantly. I want to be happy again, and successful, and not over-reacting to petty bullshit. According to Mark Manson's Guide To Happiness: And: (Obtw, Mark Manson just released a book, The Subtle Art of Not Giving A Fuck. It is awesome and has NF Steve's seal of approval.) The point is that I don't have any fucking control over my life right now, and I need to start getting some control so that I can stop feeling like shit. Goal 1: Figure out what my ideal self is (as suggested in Level Up Your Life). I'm not sure how I'm going to do this yet. Probably via thought-vomitting on the Internet. Goal 2: Do one thing every day Goal 3: (Side goal that will be figured out later. I have too many in mind and I don't want to overwhelm myself) More to come later.
  12. Tuesday, May 10 - June 7 (Had taken me awhile to get here, but I am HERE, and going to enjoy the last month of the school kids in school!) Heyo, back for another month! Here to roll for the fifth month of making a thread, and hoping to be active for my goals. The month of Quotes! Bringing in the Good Vibes! Good quotes of reminders, and pretty pictures. I actually had fun finding all these pics! (Usually I get tired or angry by the end). These last five months! Wow! Can't imagine a life without Nerdfitness, with all the positive vibes ping ponging all over the forum walls. Sadly last month I got swung with tiredness that then ended me spiraling down the hole of loneliness that turned into depression. (Got triggered by pregnancy announcements- one being a high school friend, my mother finding a really good guy friend-she is pretty much my closest friend, along with not having much else going on). Pretty much was told being a "twenty something" is hard (especially when you're not in college or working). Found out Barnes and Nobles actually has a self help section So yeah the main beast I'm fighting isn't necessarily getting off my butt, but keeping the good stuff and working toward the light and away from the pain of loneliness. Fitness Nutrition Life Goals
  13. Now with 1000 Elephants!!! err....cuts with the sword.... Read your Pratchett. Following hot on the heels of the last challenge.... is the last challenge. I'm keeping the same primary goals, to whit: It does you good to get out in the fresh air... "We have swept well. Let's go to the gardens, for is it not written, 'It does you good to get out in the fresh air'?" First assignment - get outside. I have a yard to putter in and clean up during spring, an old, old maple I need to get some more mulch under (probably another 4 yards, if I actually want to get to the drip line), a park with trails under trees nearby, and well, it's Seattle- there's green space everywhere. +1 for a walk +5 for general outdoor activity (cleaning up the yard, tending to some of the beds around the house, etc). +10 (or more) for any possible big work - like mulching out to the dripline (that might be in the next challenge). Minimum to pass - +20. Practice, for out in the world "We'll slice our way there," said Lu-Tze, and he stopped and turned. "You think you can do that?" "I've done it hundreds of times--" Lobsang began. "Back in Oi Dong, yes," said Lu-Tze. "But there's all kinds of checks and safeguards in the valley. Oh, didn't you know that? Slicing in Oi Dong is easy, lad. It's different out here. The air tries to get in the way, Do it wrong and the air is like a rock...." Second assigment - Kata and Suburi. This takes on some special meaning to me now. I'll detail it more throughout the challenge, but essentially I'm receiving a teaching license in my martial art. My training brother and I have been tasked with setting up the date and event, etc (we're both receiving license), I've got a lot of thoughts going on behind this one. In the dojo, with the familiar faces and small number of students we have, things are somewhat easy. We know each others' faults and strengths. It's helped learn how to 'see' as a teacher, but there's still so much to learn. While it's not part of this challenge, a larger quest in this year will be establishing my own school, and navigating all that entails, and being ready for the real world of students I'm not familiar with. So - Suburi (cuts only) - +1 per session. Bonus point for naginata suburi, which will have to be outside. Kata or waza practice - +1 per class or session at home. (certain techniques with the naginata can be done with a bo or don't go overhead, so can be done inside on rainy days). "Her house! So amazing! A palace! New sheets every other week! And cook? Just to taste her Beans Baked Upon the Toast a man would give up a cycle of the universe!" (Lu-Tze, expounding upon the Way of Mrs. Cosmopilite) Third assignment - practice the Way of Mrs. Cosmopilite. It's spring cleaning time folks. Closets to empty, porches to clean, bokken to sand an oil, and all that jazz. There are a lot of little projects to get done, and a few big ones, and it will help keep me from too much couch time. +5 for project. Also - cook often and healthy. I'm not a bad cook. Not amazing, but I enjoy what I make. Need to just keep check on this habit. More veggies, fewer leftovers, and using them up when there are. "Ook." Fourth assignment... Not sure yet. Place holder if I think of something else. Options include kettlebell fun, meditation, and duolingo (Spanish), or possibly something dance related. Then again, I may just play with any or all of those. Ook is a very useful language. Unless otherwise specified, +1 for a useful activity (fun things included). I will just be using points for tracking, and may award bonus points as I see fit.
  14. Welcome everyone, and Happy New Year! I do gymnastics, weightlifting and bodyweight skills of various styles (video: summer training sampler) and sleep far too late. I'm also a software engineer, mental calculation competitor and amateur composer. I've decided that 2016 is going to be epic, so I need to get started making that a reality. Goal #1: rest properly: the biggest thing that stops me from doing more fun stuff is not getting enough sleep. Therefore this challenge I'll have a simple but strict goal of having my laptop off before 0100 every day. This means I'll get about 8 hours of sleep (my alarm is for 0910 or later) but won't have to rush to brush teeth etc. before sleeping (rushing before sleeping is a bad idea). Scoring: for each week: 7 days with laptop off by 0100: +0.50 CON5 days with laptop off by 0100: +0.25 CONI'll start this at 2015-01-04 01:00:00 for 28 nights. Goal #2: solid workouts: to get back to my physical peak, I need to resume some serious strength training. Some things I'd like to achieve in the next few months: gymnastics rings: front and back leversbarbell squat 150% my bodyweightbench press 100% my bodyweightbar muscle-upone-handed push-upgo to a gymnastics competition/meetFor this goal I'll get: +0.50 STR for each full weightlifting session+0.25 STA for each 10-exercise bodyweight/rings workoutFor the latter, I'll be mainly doing randomized workouts. Explanation in spoiler: Goal #3: experiential happiness: I'm generally happy but it's worth learning more about what affects my mood, so I'll do an experiment. Details in spoiler: I already did a trial of this in December and learned that I need to prioritize sleep (hence goal #1 here). This challenge, I'll run an experiment in a separate thread (I'll post a link here when it's made) so that you and anyone else in the forum can try this sort of experiment too. +1.00 CHA for hacking my happiness. Goal #4: mental calculation training: The next Olympics of Mental Calculation and Memory Sports - "Memoriad" - is in November in Las Vegas, and I intend to compete and do well. I've competed before in a similar international competition but the standard is getting higher and I need to keep up! Over the holiday, I've made some training programs to improve weak areas, so this challenge is to train using these for 15 minutes, 4 times per week. +0.25 WIS for each week that I do this. Details of the events in the spoiler: Goal #5: the list: yep, this worked well last time so I'm doing the same again +0.25 for every item in this list that I check off by the end of January. Maximum +6.00 possible between this and goal #2. No bodyweight PR goals this time because that would make me focus on the wrong things... handstands: have a training session in my office (like I did in 2014 before they put a ping pong table in my training room)cartwheels: learn decent cartwheels on each side (I've been nearly there for a couple months)round-off: learn this gymnastics move (I know the theory but I can't yet do the technique)front handspring: do this consistently on floor (I've landed it before but most of the time I'd land on my ass)front flip: land this safely on floor (I've only done it onto soft surfaces as my technique is unreliable)front flip: bonus points for landing it on floorgymnastics rings: learn a front or back kip (not the same as a kipping muscle-up)1 mile run: as fast as possible for time (achieved in 6 min 25 sec)800 metre run: in 02:50 or lesscalendar dates: 40 in a minute (PR before challenge is 37)calendar dates: 42 in a minutecalendar dates: 44 in a minutecalendar dates: 46 in a minutecalendar dates: 48 in a minutecalendar dates: 50 in a minutesquare roots: second-best score of 315 (second-best before challenge is 308)square roots: second-best score of 330square roots: second-best score of 345square roots: second-best score of 360 (maximum possible)binary digits: refine and memorize algorithmbinary digits: refine and memorize algorithm (bonus point!)binary digits: try binary digits event without reference to notes Okay, so nice and straightforward as always Good luck everyone for the first-ever 4-week challenge. Looking forward to following your progress!
  15. ♩Cause.....we're.... ANIMANIACS ♩♬ ♬ And we're zany to the max ♬ :D :D and one of my favorite Animaniac's songs: Hello all! 2016 is our year . I'm starting this year with a nostalgic favorite cartoon (because....cartoons ). I'll be returning to the combo system but with simplified categories! AND (DUN DUN DUN) I'm also adding a weekly PvP element (villain face off) each week based on who signs up (props to Lady Shello for this awesome format tweak!). The combo system means I do at least one thing from each list per day, and I get extra points for multiples. I'm still not sure on scoring my challenge, maybe the new NF avatar system will help ¯\_(ツ)_/¯. But the scores aren't as important to me as doing the things each and every day, one day at a time. The combo system helps with that so I'm going back to it! Without further ado... here are the categories for this challenge! Dot: Physical Health ​Taking care of myself is important, anything from this list counts for this category for the day. AT LEAST one thing per day. Some days it will be one, others it will be more. And some days it may be zero. And that's fine, life happens. Persistent, daily effort is the point. Dot's List: Yakko: Mental Health ​Taking care of my mental health is key, anything from this list counts for this category for the day. AT LEAST one thing per day. Some days it will be one, others it will be more. And some days it may be zero. And that's fine, life happens. Persistent, daily effort is the point. Yakko's List: Wakko: Emotional Health (Fun and creativity) ​Finding the fun is the key to most things! Anything from this list counts for this category for the day. AT LEAST one thing per day. Some days it will be one, others it will be more. And some days it may be zero. And that's fine, life happens. Persistent, daily effort is the point. Wakko's List: That's pretty much it!. I'll let Yakko take it from here: EDIT: Villain PvP sign up IS LIVE
  16. 2016 Road Map These are my big goals for the next year, there is a lot I want to accomplish so I reserve the right to alter them as life happens Mental Health Live In the Moment- take things second by second day by day maintain good habits Meditation at least 5x per week, preferably daily Inspiration Gratitude Positive Self Talk falling in love with myself Physical Health Exercise Pilates 2x per week Lifting 2-3x per week walking- as active rest yoga? Eat your Freggies Sleep Water Creative Health: Writing write another book this year (Camp NaNo) finish second draft of 2014 Nano by april (Editing from Jan-March) finish third draft by june (March-May) finish 2015 Nano (May-June) Drawing 1 per challenge Music Write an EP 3-4 songs I like Become proficient at guitar, this means: able to play songs change chords well know all the notes on the frets Return to School: Financial Aid for School tax returns (by april priority deadline) fafsa (by april priority deadline) CSS profile (by april priority deadline) Finalize return to Wes (May-June) email dean email advisor pick classes Learning: Read 20 new books this year Take 3 coursera courses to get used to studying and classes again Fluency in French?
  17. Journal of a Beginning Sailor Senshi It takes a long time and many challenges for a regular girl to realise that she has the power take her destiny into her own hands and make of her life whatever she wants it to be. To understand that with regular practice, dedication and faith, she can be strong some day, strong enough to defeat powerful enemies.
  18. Hello Druids! This is my second challenge but my first as part of a guild. This is part two of my journey learning how to take care of myself and well... care about myself. I guess it's a journey in learning self compassion. I learned in my last challenge that happiness is built from the inside out so I'm focused on re-inforcing my interior scaffolding. I’m hesitating on grading some these because self care should be its own reward. I won’t put a time limit or value judgement on most of these. What matters is my consistent and persistent effort. Some of parts of the quests are maintenance goals from the last challenge. As ever my primary goal is to become the person I want to be, one baby step at a time. I have listed some lesson objectives for each activity next to it, though of course there will be many more unplanned lessons throughout the challenge. Grading will be done as a percentage however the only failing grade is a zero, so if I do 50% that’s still a C because something is better than nothing. Going into this challenge I will shoot for 100% because it is possible but I do not expect myself to be perfect. Perfection is the enemy of progress. Quest 1: Mind Gratitude statements: letting of of the negative by focusing on the positive (New) total possible points: 42 Daily Meditation: total possible points: 42 Walk to Mordor: Miles from walking and running added weekly total possible points: 6 Quest 2: Body Overall Challenge Goals: +Maintaining previous challenge exercise schedule +1 more weight training session per week +Mindful Eating (Continued from last challenge) +Water (Continued from last challenge) +Daily Shower (New) Exercise activity every day Water Goal: 2L per day Grading : X/84L total points: 42 (fractional points awarded for this challenge) Maintain mindful eating Continue mindful eating, especially mindful of sugar. Using MFP to track my calories. Reporting food in my challenge thread every day. This was not an official part of the last challenge, but it helped a lot to clean up my diet. My diet is focused on whole foods, categories to be mindful are fruits, nuts and cheeses. I’m going with 1700 calories a day, revised based on my activity levels. So 11,900 for the week Grading: X/71,400 minus one letter grade for every 500 calories over total goal (so I have a buffer) total points: 42 (fractional points awarded for this challenge, -.25 points for every 100 calories over goal) Hygiene (New) Shower daily. This is a symptom of my depression. Showering (sadly) needs to be part of my self-care routine. I have to make the time for myself. total possible points: 42 Quest 3: Soul Chocolate Bar Challenge: One bar of my favorite chocolate bar (cadbury milk w/ caramel) spread over six weeks. I used to eat two of these in one sitting so one chocolate bar has to last the whole challenge. At a pace of approx. 3 squares per week total possible points: 6 Daily Inspiration: This is very centering. I started it informally last challenge and I would like to continue. total possible points: 42 No weed It’s aggravating my anxiety (New) total possible points: 42 Reading every day total possible points: 42 Total possible points for challenge: 402 Actual points total: ????? Life Quest: -POSITIVITY WALL -Creative Writing 3x per week, a sentence is fine. Progress is progress -Get ready for school- letter of intent Dr’s letters Dr’s paperwork beanie’s harness Beanie’s carrier
  19. Main Quest: To be happy, feel happy, and enjoy my life. I want to be happier in 6 weeks than I am now. Diet and Fitness Goal 1: "I'm a grown ass woman, I do what I want" Work out 3x a week. This has no schedule, no specific routine. Just do what I feel like doing. What qualifies as a "workout?" I have to put on fitness clothes and do an activity specifically for my body (i.e. not walking to the store to buy food). This could be yoga, could be bodyweight stuff, etc. Diet and Fitness Goal 2: Eat what you want This is probably an un-challenge, but I'm not going to track. Not going to count. Not going to eat vegetables 2x a day. All I'm going to do is observe and eat mindfully. Pay attention to the food I'm eating, pay attention to how it feels before, during, and after. Leave the judgement out of it, and eat what feels good. I have a feeling that this might end up being more vegetables than chocolate anyway when I really sit down and think, "what do I want to eat? what feels good to eat?" but that's not really the point. I believe there is a place for every kind of food and I don't think any food should be off limits. The point is to really stop and enjoy the food I get to eat. So how am I going to track this un-tracking? Every day that I remember to stop and enjoy my food, I get a 1 pt. Diet and Fitness Goal 3: Stay the fuck off fitness websites/InstaTwitFace Or more importantly, stop paying attention to what other people are doing for their fitness. And stop feeling that jealous envy for your old coworker who had a baby, joined cross fit, lost a ton of weight and now appears to be living it up. Don't compare your life to someone else's highlight reel. If I find myself on InstaTwitFace and thinking something like, "hmm maybe I should try that workout that she's doing", I'm going to immediately close the window and go walk around the office. Same if I find myself on some website looking at a pushup progression workout program. Side Quest: I hate my job More in the backstory post, but basically I need to learn new skills so I can either move out of my current position, make my life easier in that position, or get a new job entirely. First new skill is coding. First coding language is python (which we use at work anyway for a lot of programs). Currently ~40% complete with the python course on CodeAcademy.com. Hoping to finish the course by the end of these 6 weeks. If I finish, then I need to start the next course of my choosing. TL;DNR Main Quest: Get happy! Goal 1: Workout 3x week! Goal 2: Enjoy food! Goal 3: Stop stressing about what other people are doing for their workouts! Side quest: Learn python!
  20. Yes, it's my second full challenge and I'm already having a rest, after going way off target with my first challenge! SO LAZY, YES?? That's right, I have no discipline to give to health, fitness and diet. No discipline, no willpower, no motivation, no inspiration, no knuckle down and do the work-ness, no just do it-ness, none of it. But wait! All is not lost! This challenge, I am making my overarching goal to ENJOY BEING ALIVE (since I don't do that very often). And I'm making it food and fitness related! (That's right, I said FOOD related!). As your intuitive-eater-in-residence, I declare my first bit of the mission: 1. EAT WHAT YOU LOVE, LOVE WHAT YOU EAT In the past few days, I've been trying this on for size again, and I'm getting back into my groove with how awesome this really is... Yesterday, I realised that I really wanted carrot and apples with houmous. And with nobody to tell me that these foods are "good" or "healthy" I realised they didn't automatically taste of deprivation, but are actually bloody amazing! Pink lady apples and carrot sticks and houmous are on my list of Awesome Foods I Love. This morning I had a sausage sandwich for breakfast. I really enjoyed the breakfast-y smell of it, and a bit of BBQ sauce. Our new nutty bread is nice, but I like brown too. White usually tastes like I would imagine wet cardboard to taste, so I don't like that. I wasn't hungry for hours, then I wanted a small maple & pecan cheesecake (300 cals in case you're wondering what I define as a small cheesecake). The first half was beautiful, the second half was OK, I left a tiny bit (deliberately - more on that in a minute!) and I took about half an hour to eat the whole thing. It's OK for me to enjoy all kinds of foods, I get that now. A few hours later I was hungry again so had a bit of breaded lemon sole. I usually have loads of Mayo with it because I think that's what I want, but a bit of analysis led me to realise that I only put the Mayo on it to cool it down, because I hate my food burny-hot... So I waited 10 minutes for the fish to cool down and had it on its own. It was delicious! I've been obscuring the lovely taste of how many foods with what is essentially egg and vinegar and fat dressing? Wtf. And just like that, I don't really like Mayo any more. Maybe in a sandwich. I don't know, I'll wait and see. I remember when this happened to me with ice cream, it was a happy day, lol! It's a few hours later now and I'm still happily not hungry, and I enjoyed every single thing I ate today. I guess I might have knocked back around 1200 cals or so? That's low, but I've had a lazy Sunday and my massive exertion for the day was going out for a pint of milk. Other days are different! So, from being afraid of the food missions, to doing the food missions in my own way! Expect words. LOADS OF WORDS. About the foods. All the foods. Expect analysis and lots of it. What the food smelled like, the packaging, what mood I was in, who I was with, what I'd done that day... Etc. About that other thing: I'm leaving a small bit of food behind each time I eat something. It doesn't have to be a huge amount, but I've unearthed an unhealthy and irrational fear of wasting food or leaving it behind. I don't know where it came from, but regardless, I don't want it. My body is not a bin. And the only way I'll ever stop wasting food is by figuring out what portion sizes work for me, and I'll never work that out if I always think I have to eat EVERYTHING that's there. So I think that by the end of this challenge, I won't be 195lbs any more. I want weight loss, but it's not the goal. That's the thing with me and goals. I can never look directly at them. +5 CON if I eat what I love, and love what I eat, 30 days out of 42! Joined the Mindful Eating FTW! Accountability thread, because as I remember it, this way of eating is something that takes reflection, and talking it through with others really helps. I still can't believe I found a mindful eating accountability thread... too much awesome for words! 2. WALK MOAR I decided at the end of my last challenge that 2500 miles of walking would get me into a ballpark of getting shot of the approximate 70lbs of fat I want to get shot of, all other things being equal. My baseline is pretty sedentary apart from my job, which I'm hoping to be out of soon anyway , and back on a daytime schedule. So I'm not counting that. Goal is as stated. Walk more. Nice and nebulous and non-SMART (Yeah, I'm breaking the rules here because the rules work but I make them not work by sabotaging myself). I started at 2500 miles on 10 Feb. I'm down to 2456 (I think) and only counting anything outwith my normal routine using the runtastic app on my phone. Been ill since Friday 20th and at work so no long walks since then, and because of a uni deadline on Weds 25th I probably won't go far until after that, but should get back into it with a 4.5 mile walk to work on Thursday afternoon Up to +5 STA depending on how far I get, and how much it feels like an awesome, enjoyable, habitual addition to my life by the end of the challenge. Doing PVP - Walkers this time round! My first PVP. I trust that I'm taking a relaxed enough attitude to this whole challenge to keep my confidence up through the competitive aspect of the challenge. 3. MINIS!!! No mini in week 1 because of the uni deadline. Weeks 2-6 i'll dream up minis that take my fancy because reasons. +5 other points for minis depending on how I feel at the time. Edit: Starting measurements etc from 23 Feb 2015! Weight: 193.4lbsScale Bf%: 48%DoD Bf%: 41.6%Scale H2O%: 37.2%Lean mass: 100.6lbsChest (upper): 40.5Chest (lower): 34.5Waist: 37Hips: 43Neck: 14.5Right upper arm: 14.5Left upper arm: 14Right lower arm: 10.5Left lower arm: 10.5Right thigh: 29Left thigh: 28.5Right calf: 18Left calf: 18.5
  21. Goal 1: exercise for an hour a week. This is extremely doable. I already do this sort of. 6 weeks...at least hours. I must do this Goal 2: Complete at least one codeacademy course a week. That's only 6 courses. It's python! Again doable as f*ck. Long termish Goal: Earn 10% more revenue. I'm reading and working hard to develop passive revenue. Making more money will allow me to keep doing the job that I love (that pays very little). I just need to keep moving forward and not get beat down by setbacks.
  22. I have decided to join this challenge, but with some modifications compared to the previous ones: - No goals - Less updates and less followings (fun, but too time consuming) - KISS (Keep It Simple Stupid) - No points OK, now to the challenge! This time I will just focus on what makes me happy. Just being and accepting. And what does this mean? I am happy when I eat healthy foods, when I move my body, when I relax and when I feel no pressure to achieve stuff. I will not have goals, but I will still I aim for certain things. For instance, I want to eat healthy, and I will try to do so, but I will not set a goal “no sugar for 6 weeks†or something like that. I will update this thread once a week (sometimes more, but at least a weekly update) and then post a sum up of the week for four different categories and three different "grades". The four categories are: Healthy foods: I eat food that makes me feel good. I can eat whatever I want, but in moderation. Body care: Workouts, climbing, trigger point etc Mindfulness: Meditations, eating slowly, gratitude Happiness: How I felt during the day. Does not necessarily correlate with above, but will often do so. The grades are: Green=Great, Yellow=OK Red=Not good And finally, I will do a mini-challenge (of my own) every week, where I focus on something I think deserves some extra attention. OK, lets do this! “Nature does not hurry, yet everything is accomplished.†- Lao Tzu
  23. After hitting a slump during my sixth challenge I decided to "quit" on that one and take some time to focus on other things in my life. I was starting a new job (which is going well), and dealing with some other things. Most of that is sorted out now, I kicked a bout of depression I was having and overall am feeling positive in coming back here. I decided it was also time to get back to basics, refocus on my original goals coming to NF, and start fresh. I was pushing myself a bit too hard to branch out in my last two challenges and they suffered as a result. So without further ado... History: A bit of background may help. This will be my seventh challenge on NF - although I didn't complete anything past week one from my sixth, so I'm calling it my sixth. My goals when I started on NF last August were to lose weight, reach a 32 inch waist, drop below 10% body fat and build strength. Not to mention nail those pesky salmon ladders... Since then my goals have changed. I lost over 50 pounds, maintaining about 160 currently, my waist is hovering at 31 inches, and I'm at about 12% body fat. I feel good, and if I may say so, I look good. So, looking at my first second challenge (my first was... poorly designed due to lack of guidance in the level 1 group at the time), I've decided to revisit some of those goals and help bring myself back to what I originally wanted to achieve, and continue on that path: Main Quest: Drop to 8% BF, eliminate stomach fat. Squat 1.5x Bodyweight, Deadlift 2x bodyweight. OHP, Bench and Row 1x bodyweight. These continue to be my overarching body goals. I'm getting pretty close, and this challenge I'm going to refocus on the basics to help get me there. As always, in order to hit this goal I am driving forward with several sub goals, which will be worked into this challenge. Steadily increase my Squat, Deadlift and Pull Ups in weight and number.Do Salmon Ladder Pull-Ups. Because... seriously.I also want to, eventually, get my mile-run speed down to 7 minutes solid. (Not a focus this challenge)Quest 1: Eat Paleo - One of my biggest challenges during the last 8 weeks or so has been my eating. I've just been... eating to eat, and I need to bring that back under control - primarily the amount of sugar I'm eating. It's mostly from fruit, but it's still in the 50-60+ grams a day range. So, the goal is eating 90% paleo/primal, and keeping my sugar intake under 50g a day (closer to 30 if I can). Quest 2: Lift Heavy - I've also been slacking on the gym, having only gone 3 times in the last three weeks (yeah...). So quest 2 is to lift heavy three times a week, with regularity, and focus on the strength progression of the Stronglifts program. We MAY be switching gyms in the middle of the challenge (for those of you who know the story, yes this is still an ongoing battle), but that shouldn't interrupt anything. Quest 3: Be Flexible/Mobile - Beyond strength, I also want to focus on my mobility and flexibility, which gives this quest a two-pronged goal - Yoga 3 times a week and walking at least 6 miles a week, a total of 40 miles over the course of the challenge. Both doable. Life Quest: Clean Up the Clutter - My ongoing quest to make it look like we didn't just move into our apartment (that we've lived in for almost three years now). Goal is to consolidate at least two boxes into one box every week, and sell, throw out or give away at least one item every week. Currently trying to sell some records, Magic cards and a few other items on eBay. I also have a kitten that we rescued during the last challenge that I'm trying to find a home for - hopefully all can be accomplished during these six weeks. Personal Quest: Save - My fiancee and I have been focusing on our budget a lot recently and our struggle with saving (toward our wedding), so my last goal, rather than being fitness oriented, is another life goal - save more. I have a strategy for this, but it essentially boils down to spend less. Less booze, less eating out (which happens infrequently anyway) and less wasted money on trivial things. My new job, plus the things I'm trying to sell, should help with this. My fiancee is also looking for a job - that would turn things around 180° if it happened... So there you have it. Ravnos' seventh sixth challenge! Let's do this!
  24. I just made this! Yum time! I'm not a measurer of things when it comes to cooking unless it's absolutely needed. So, the above is bacon (5 or slices...it came out of the pack weird) with chopped up sun-dried tomatoes (4) thrown in for the last 2 or so minutes. Then I put it in a food processor until it came out bacon-bity. I'm going to serve it on a salad with blackened chicken and a dressing I make of guacamole, olive oil, and whatever general seasoning is in the cabinet. N' mushies and tomatoes! If I hadn't eaten all the eggs this morning, I would throw a boiled one in, too.
  25. Hi! I was just reading about the power of gratitude and love the idea of starting and ending the day with thoughts of gratitude. We are all asking a lot of our bodies, changing our diets, not giving it enough sleep, pushing it to lift more and more weight, run greater and greater distances… It deserves a bit of gratitude. So… here's mine: I am grateful for a body that is flexible and can bend down touch my toes and my forehead to my knees with ease. I am grateful for a body that can lift up my ten-year-old son spin him around and give him a great big hug. I am grateful for a body that looks great in a slinky dress. How about you?
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