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  1. December finals season is the absolute worst. Need proof? Here you go: 1) Lot's of people and media expect you to be happy because of the holidays. 2) 0 daylight. 3) Lot's of food to stress eat. 4) Finals. BUT I am finally approved to ease into working out again which means I can combat stress and stress eating by channeling all my energy into pretending yoga is fun. (JK I love yoga but I like other things that I can't do more.) So to celebrate my return I'm going to try and take it easy (yet again). Goals: 1) 3 Workouts a Week 2) Only order/go out 3 times per week 3) Drink a water before any other drink (Ex: Drink a full glass of water before a beer/wine/pop/coffee) 4) Meditate 5 minutes every morning 5) Stretch 10 minutes a day 6) Write down but don't stress out about what I'm eating That's it. That is all I am asking from myself for the next four weeks (in terms of healthy things - I've got a TON of studying to do). Wish me luck and apologies in advance if I'm not stopping by your challenges as much as I should be. I'll get back into the hang of it soon! Going into this challenge like:
  2. The Fourth Librarian (in training) Let's be honest, Faye loved books. She really did! In fact some of her best friends were books! But when this mysteriously sparkly letter had arrived by post (almost eleven years ago, unless she missed her guess) she had been a. 15 and b. teaching in the Nigerian countryside. Her parents--after the typical Nigerian fashion--would not have taken kindly to her dropping out of school (no matter how prestigious the position). She had barely convinced them to allow her to continue her studies remotely (though they could hardly object to her extending her stay in Nigeria to help people). And perhaps more importantly, she couldn't leave her students. They had gotten over her American birth (she was after all still daughter to two Nigerians), and even the fact that she was their age! Some of her students had taken to her Computer Skill training quite well and this was a critical point! So, despite the temptation the Metropolitan Library's offer posed, Faye could not simply up and leave. Now she was 25 and so buried by student loans she literally could not pursue another degree until she paid some of the debt off. Then, almost as if by fate, she ran into--literally ran into--an old friend. Challenge 1: Training with Eve +2 STR, +2 DEX, +1 WIS Faye and Eve first met during their time at NATO. Faye, the lowly, ambitious intern and Eve fresh off her first tour. Initially, Eve had just liked Faye's dry humor and had taken her out for coffee to further explore. Eventually, Eve found herself closely mentoring Faye until the two fell out of contact during Faye's stint in Israel. One day, on what Faye considered an "Angst ridden romp through her favorite field of books", she ran headlong into Eve. Hours later, they found themselves laughing over coffee until Faye uttered with a wistful sigh, "You know I almost had a job here." Before either knew what had happened, a glittering envelope dropped onto the table between them with a chime like "clack," if such a thing could be said. While Faye's gaze began to explore the suddenly very interesting ceiling, Eve's brows found a place to rest somewhere along her hairline. And thus the fourth Librarian was born. Faye (basically a slightly fictionalized version of myself) is, of course, even more ignorant of her role than her freshly minted peers. And so, before tossing her into the field, Eve wants her properly trained. To this point, she will be working her way through 49 days of Hero's Journey in 49 days (yikes). Challenge 2: Lamia's Lair +3 DEX, +1 WIS Faye has been on the wrong end of Lamia's Katana before. It had been a friendly sparring match at the time but, Faye had learned her functional flexibility was not what it should be if she ever intended to defeat Lamia as a Librarian. So, when not huffing and puffing under Eve's tutelage (a rare event), she worked on that very weakness. At least five minutes everyday, Faye would stretch and stretch, growing ever closer to a split. Challenge 3: "Quiet, I'm doing Math" +3 CON, +1 WIS Cassandra is the only other Librarian Faye has met. Eve is quite keen on keeping her away from Ezekiel's influence and Jake's "take charge" personality (the two would clash immediately). Cass and Faye, both synesthetes (this is actually true of me), are fast friends and often parse out the peculiarities of their condition together. Cass also works with Faye on monitoring the particulars of her training--especially keeping below her daily caloric intake. Challenge 4: Noli timere malum, sed time heroa +1 WIS, +1 CHA Remember that next degree Faye wants? International Law. Now that the Library is paying her for her trouble, she wants to go to law school. Ostensibly counteracting the echoes of Morgan le Fay's presence throughout the centuries and perhaps becoming someone to fear. But that means actually getting those applications in! So, in the month of November, Faye intends to submit all her applications. I will try to keep the updates daily and in Faye's voice! They'll probably end up as journal entries or something of that nature. Wish me luck (cause I'm SO afraid)!! Will most definitely bribe self.
  3. Well, fellow adventurers, I've come to a pretty huge milestone in my life. I'm about to graduate from law school. I'm a bit of an achievement collector, and I need to maintain my grades to graduate Summa Cum Laude. What I do for the next 6 weeks will determine whether or not I achieve this. As such, the theme for my challenge is born. As we've always been told a healthy body is necessary for a healthy mind. This ranger knows he has to rest adequately, eat right, and stay diligent with his exercise regiment in order succeed. This challenge is dedicated to fitness sustainability throughout work/school demands. After all, life is a little unpredictable in that regard. Main Goals: My system: Health (5), Hunger (5), and Sanity (5). Every day I lose 3 of each. Every day is aimed at replenishing. 5 is max stat. Each week will get a grade, the final grade being the average. Don't Starve (Scavenger Diet: + 2 Con + 2 Sta): I love paleo. It has served me so well in achieving my weight loss and fitness goals. I've done it for two challenges now and it is officially my preference, my habit. This is great, but it gets in the way all the time. I have to cook everything. Eating out is impossible. I miss out on so much free food at the school. I have to go make food instead of socialize like a normal human being. So, I'm debuting the scavenger diet. - Paleo Meal(+1 health and + 1 hunger) - Take-out/Protein Shake/Free Meal (+1 hunger) - Junk Food (- 1 health and + 1 hunger) The ideal ratio will be 2/3 paleo meals and 1 non-junk food meal. An additional meal will be required on the days I exercise. 5 Hunger = A, 4 Hunger = B, 3 Hunger = C, 2 Hunger = D, 1-0 Hunger = F Don't Stop Moving (Scavenger Fitness: +2 Str + 2 Dex): I love working out regularly. Yet, when one is busy, one must squeeze a workout into the strangest of times. Everyday I spend figuring out when to workout takes twice as much time out of my day than just using opportunities that present themselves to "find" exercise. - Full Workout (+2 health, -1 hunger, + 1 sanity) : Strength + Cardio + Full Stretch OR - Half Workout (-1 hunger, + 1 health): Strength or Cardio - Full Stretch (+ 1 sanity) The ideal ratio will be to do the half workout/stretch daily, or do the full workout for every day I miss/ to make up for junk food/drinking. 5 Health = A, 4 Health = B, 3 Health = C, 2 Health = D, 1-0 Health = F Don't Give Up (Scavenger Wellness: + 2 Wis + 2 Cha): Winter is ugly. School is a chore. Self-medication is dangerous. I've got to stay motivated and make time for myself each day. As such I will dedicate some time to feeling good! - 8 hours of sleep (+1 health, + 1 sanity) - Spend Time on my Hobbies (+ 1 sanity) - Drink (-1 Health, + 1 Sanity) The ideal ratio will be to sleep, and make sure I am still productive when I don't work out. 5 Sanity = A, 4 Sanity = B, 3 Sanity = C, 2 Sanity = D, 1-0 Sanity = F Life Goal: Don't Slack (Summa Cum Laude: + 3 Wis): If it isn't obvious already, this goal will require A LOT of tracking. I will have to be meticulously organized in order to track all my statistics. I will kill two birds with one stone and meticulously plan and track my academics. I have two papers to write, two final exams, and a trial to prepare for. It goes without saying much work must be done in advance. For those of you who do not know, law school is graded on a curve. Not everyone can get an A. You must literally defeat your opponents in order to get the best grades. I've done well enough so far, placing myself in the top ten percent of my class, and I want to keep it that way. Here is a rough outline of my desired progress: Week 1) Research/Outline Paper A (1/3), Week 2) Research/Outline Paper B (1/3), Week 3) Write Paper A (2/3), Week 4) Write Paper B (2/3), Week 5) Edit Paper A (3/3), Week 6), Edit Paper B (3/3). The weeks following these will be spent preparing for my exams. Throughout all these weeks I will be juggling various projects from my other classes. Should be fun. Wish me luck!
  4. Hello Fellow Rebels! I'm writing this from a Starbucks WiFi connection, still won't have my own internet for another 2 weeks. Last challenge was difficult to keep up with for this same reason, plenty of things happening and victories to track, but no way to alert people! Even now, I'm probably going to have to leave before I can finish, so I'll try to make this quick. Even though I'm a HORRENDOUSLY slow typist. My main quest for this challenge is to get ready for law school, which will start a month into the challenge. Then I'll have 2 weeks of classes to assess my preparedness and make any needed adjustments before the semester gets fully underway. I want to be able to balance a healthy lifestyle and a full class load, and that means sticking to a plan and a schedule. I'll actually get my class schedule sometime this week and be able to create (and post many pictures of) a comprehensive calendar to simulate what my schedule in law school will be like. I want to work on making meals, working out, and "studying" only in times that I'll actually have available to me between classes. More on how that will pan out exactly in a future post. For now, I have 3 goals for myself, to feed my body, my mind, and my soul. This may be the only "me" time I get for quite some time (three years if my lawyer friends are telling the truth). It's very important to me to not let my physical vessel suffer while I hone my mind. This is the only body I've got, after all. Toward that end: GOAL 1: I want to do bodyweight workouts 3 times a week, this is the BARE minimum. If I want to, I can take an off day and go for a walk or kayak on the lake or whatever, but I ABSLUTELY CANNOT slack on these workouts. I'm not giving myself a way out this time. I have literally nothing weighing on my time these days since quitting my job and moving, so there's no reason not to carve out the 3 hours a week it requires. If that. If I pick up a good pace I can get a 4 set circuit done in 30 minutes. It's about time I stopped babying myself and got back to the Amanda I was this time last year. This means a total of 18 workouts, which is not really that much of a commitment. The grading is as follows: A= 12-18 workouts, with some extra ones thrown in such as cycling and urban hikes B= 9-15 workouts with no extra time put in C= 6-10 workouts F= less than 6 workouts. This is not an option. GOAL 2: I want to make delicious and nutritious meals for me and my tiny family of one other person. We've been doing very well in making our own food (I cook, Nate cleans up) and I want to keep it that way. The thing that kills me currently is keeping in line with Nate's tastbuds and still keeping it Paleo. Right now, I don't really. There are a lot of white potatoes and rice, used to keep Nate's culinary attention and to keep him eating my food instead of going to a fast food place after I eat dinner. He's committed to eating more healthfully just like I am, but he's hopelessly picky. My real challenge is in finding whole food meals that he enjoys and doesn't realize are good for him ;-) I'll do this by making dinner at least 3 times a week, realistically it'll probably be more. If I'm meeting this goal too easily I'll adjust for difficulty later. This equals 18 dinners in all, so grading is: A= 15-20 nutritious and completely paleo meals B= 10-15 paleo meals, a few that cheat slightly C= 8-12 meals, most have some form of simple carb F= less than 10 cooked meals. If this happens, heaven help me. GOAL 3: I want to be ready administratively for when law school comes, this means making out a budget, getting textbooks, notebooks/pens and such, and arranging my workspace. This is more of a tiered system than letter graded, I'm going to have 6 tasks that need to be met by the end of the challenge. They are, in no particular order: Sort out official files and paperwork so that it doesn't drown my study sessionsCreate a budget that takes into account student loans and Nate's impending new jobBuy textbooks, get vaccinated, and upgrade ID (all on campus)Get new study materials, all pens and highlighters were accidentally tossed during the moveFind syllabi, transpose due dates into NEW date plannerCreate database of recipes to draw form that can be made in less than an hour or in a Crockpot for multiple mealsThese are the tools that will enable my overly engaged mind to rest easy on a cushion of over-preparation. I've already been told that trying to do supplemental reading before starting classes is mostly useless unless it's requested on the syllabus, and my tendency to overthink things is going to rear it's ugly head very soon if I don't have something productive to occupy my time. So that's this challenge in a nutshell. Bring on August! I can't wait to read what you guys are tackling this time.
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