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  1. I missed the last challenge but still got it in some great workouts for the last six weeks. I am trying to find a good way to keep track of my workouts but I haven't found and easy way to do it which and many times, because of the multiple workouts per day, I cannot remember what I did by the end of the day. Anyway, this time around, I am going to keep focusing on the chaos workouts and continue to do at least two workouts per day with the focus on the following: 1: Get 10 strict pull ups by the end of the challenge. Since my squats and lunges have improved with my current workout, I am going to apply the same method to pull ups. If I remember correctly, I was able to do 28 pull ups when I was 17 during a fitness test which was 38 years ago. The end goal is to get to 30 consecutive pull ups overall but if I can get to 10 over the next five weeks, I know I can keep increasing that number going forward. 2: Mobility training three times per week. I am seeing a lot of improvement since I started doing The Simplistic Mobility Method and the only thing that is holding me back is consistent training. I get one or two of these workouts in per week but I need to up the game. I also found some interesting Qi Gong training on Youtube that I started doing which is similar to moving meditation. 3. Three Karate classes per week. I have two formal Zoom classes each week but I need an additional class, on my own, to work on what I am learning in the two other classes. I do a good amount of kihon and kata throughout the week but an additional, structured class will go a long way. Extra credit: Mediate at least three times per week. This is one area that I have been lacking in over the last year or so. I was doing so well with headspace everyday for over three years but I started to feel that it wasn't helping. I have a couple of apps and some Youtube videos that interest me and doing them three times a week should go a long way.
  2. Sorry for the late arrival. I knew what I wanted to do, but I'm kind of having a hard time squaring it with the general mode of daily practice and new habit formation and stuff like that. But whatever. If I wind up in a better place because of what I do here, it almost seems like de facto I had to overcome something, right? So a challenge it is. For those of you who were around last time, hi! Welcome back! For those just tuning in for the first time, I'm Kishi, sole surviving Guild Leader of the Monks. We don't talk about what happened to the other two. Sadly, I'm not some sage figure, so I can't give you much in the way of answers, but I like to think I help with asking different questions. Things last challenge took a turn for the dramatic. I got diagnosed with heart disease, the striking program I was going to got shut down, I had some tumult occur at work, and the training program - so meticulously programmed - collapsed on contact with the real world. Much of last challenge was spent picking up the pieces and carrying on, and I'd like to think I did so relatively well. And the situation has changed. Since then, I've started on a low carb Mediterranean diet, but it's low carb enough to really be a Keto Mediterranean diet. Interesting results so far - my waistline is shrinking (probably water weight) and I've got a lot of slow burn energy as documented by rolling for about an hour and a half without any dip in energy or performance. Which is interesting, but for all I know could just as easily be chalked up to more technical rolling and generous rest. I have designs on veganizing this at some point, because it sounds like a challenge, and vegan diets are tied to good outcomes for the heart also, so this sounds like a real possibility, but given all the everything that's getting thrown at me this round, that's more likely something that's gonna phase in over time. Because a lot's happening, y'all! I'm going back to the office; I misspoke when I said last challenge it'd be 11/8; it's actually going to be 11/15. And it's a phased re-entry, so over the course of three weeks, I'll be adding a day, so first week will be one day, second week two, and so on until the 4th week, when I just go back to fulltime. Why's that complicated? Because one, the holidays will be starting around that time, and two, I'll be starting up at a new school, meaning new logistical challenges to overcome. The theme this time is about balancing the books, because I've decided I want to upgrade my computer. I took a look at the new school and I realized that there's only one no-gi day there, so I'm basically done as far as no-gi grappling attire is concerned. But before I start putting away for a new computer, I want to make sure that my finances are in good order. I think I've got some expenses coming out that I don't need to, and there's no reason to keep throwing money away. I also want to go further in my meditation and to make time/space for my writing - hence, balancing the books. Goal 1: Meditate Bumping up to 9 minutes. Goal 2: Balance the Books Might wind up being something of a gimme. Ideally, find one thing a day and do something about it in my finances, whether that's regular savings or finding and disposing of an extra bill I don't need to pay anymore. I really don't think I've got that much to do, but honestly, if this makes the challenge easier for once I'll take it. Goal 3: Write Gotta get back to butt in chair time. It's worth doing. Just gotta do it. At this point, just gonna focus on getting to my writing; no word count goals just yet, just carving out space. And, uh, yeah. That's really it this time. Let's get to work.
  3. It's autumn. I need to do the things. And I need a bit of discipline and structure about it. But the supportive mentor variety. So I need to get the dojo mentality back into my life. This fire dude will do, cuz of all of them, he's the one who has his adulting game on point. Hopefully there will be autumnal moon cakes. (Of the inauthentic low-carb variety. This is Avatar, you're lucky they're not on fire.)
  4. Mistr works on grace My theme for this challenge is to handle everything with more grace. What do I mean by that? The opposite of graceful is awkward. I want to work on smoothing out the stiff, frustrating, sticky parts of my life. Certainly I want my movement to be smooth and flowing too. The exercise side is easier to see, if not always to do. Decisions and interactions are harder. That will be the main focus of this challenge. You may notice that the first five goals are the same as last time. Having accountability here helps me keep working on things. Goals: 1. Continue with the Elements program and aikido. I am halfway through the Elements program and already seeing improvement in my movement. Once that is done, I will do bodyweight workouts instead. I need to do lunges and work up to pistol squats so that I can get up gracefully from sitting when one of my feet is asleep. 2. Keep doing zen. Let the passing thoughts go without engaging them. 3. Do creative projects. These give me a sense of accomplishment and progress. I selected the "Practice Creativity 101" mission on the NF app to remind me to do this. 4. Get on top of my &^%$#(@! finances and stay there. Continued from last time. Still climbing the metaphorical hill. Block time on Sundays and Thursdays until this is at a steady state. 5. Flexibility in household tasks. Concentrate on doing the things that I care about. I can let everything else go unless I get a specific request from Dumbledore or Elf. 6. Improve my eating habits. I fell back into bad habits because of stress and working from home. I want to get rid of 12 pounds of extra weight over the next three challenges. My strategy has three parts A. The first is to do intermittent fasting with a window of 12 hours from 7am to 7pm. I usually eat breakfast about 8 and try to eat supper by 6, but want to leave myself some slack. On weekends this can shift to 9am to 8pm. The main thing is no snacking in the evening. B. The second is to limit baked goods to things we make ourselves. No commercial bread or cookies, no buns on burgers. I can make any decadent desserts I want to have. My free time is the main limitation. If Elf makes pizza or Dumbledore makes bread, that is fine too. One the same note, no Halloween candy (or the same thing not in orange wrappers). I can still have high quality chocolate. In a perfect world I would cut way back on sugar, but I'm not ready to go there yet. C. The third thing is to strictly limit dairy. This is for health reasons, not to control my weight. It seems like butter and cheese is okay. Milk, yogurt and sour cream are clearly NOT okay. Keep working on alternatives to the high-dairy foods I grew up with.
  5. GONE TURBO This is my second challenge in my return to NF. I decided to take a break from NF while I sorted through the pandemic, teleworking, and virtual relationships. It was a good plan, because each day presented new obstacles and challenges while navigating to best ways for finding time and space for fitness and karate training, adjusting to maintaining healthy meals at home, and staying productive at work and in my different self-development programs with the myriad of distractions. Planning a 4 week challenge would have been impossible, because I would be course correcting daily. I took my time and built new routines understanding that they may be temporary. Over time, I developed my new normal with virtual and hybrid Toastmasters meetings, virtual gaming with friends, moved to a new gym, and working a hybrid schedule for work with some telework built in. Some things have been able to return to normal such as karate training, DnD, visiting family and friends, and working on-site but with known risk. The biggest change came in July when I launched my own website: Journey2U.org . I started a blog and coaching business to help others. It is in it's infancy, but it is a project I have been dreaming of launching for a very long time. Having it out there, I am living that part of the dream and building a new future for myself and others. With all these changes, it feels like I am not just in a new world, but like I am playing a whole new game. I'm taking a page from the movie "Wreck-It Ralph". I've Gone Turbo jumping games. So now, here we go with another episode of The Exciting Adventures of JediNickD! It was a long time ago in a galaxy far, far away that I joined this site and started my first challenge. As a Ranger, I tried to Do All The Things in World 1, my first extended stay at NF through 22 challenges where I learned how to develop and pursue health and fitness goals utilizing daily, weekly, and monthly routines. I took a hiatus from NF and came back with a better focus for my goals where I warped to World 2, which I defeated in an Epic Boss Fight slaying some mighty big life goals. In World 3, I hopped over to the Assassins and continued to develop my fitness, getting my body in the best shape of my life, even with the Degenerative Disc Disease, Arthritis, Disc Fissures, and more. Through physical therapy exercises and karate, I have maintained my core and back muscles to ease the pressure off my spine, but in the end I defeated World 3 by transforming my life into a new form. With chiropractic care healing my spine, reaching the high ranks at karate, blazing through the new Toastmasters education program called Pathways, and working to complete Novice rank at IJRS, World 4 was something new everyday. I have moved over to the Monks to reach for more diversity in my workouts and culture as my physical and mental training focus has been more on my karate training. As I actively took on more responsibility of coaching, mentoring, and teaching in all aspects of my life, I formed a different me on World 5. Now, I have Gone Turbo into World 6. Every day, I just keep on L-I-V-I-N: fighting the good fight, lighting it up, and leveling up my life!  Challenge Lesson: "Keep On Trying" I like themes so I'm going to continue with my karate dojo's creeds. The next one is for our Orange belt rank. The creed is below: Failure is the road to success. I've written about this many times and so have all sorts of professional writers, industry leaders, self-help advocates, etc. We learn in moments of failure, we gain momentum in moments of success. But how? Well, sometimes we fail because we lack experience or necessary skill. Through practice and preparation in a consequence-free environment, we can gain the experience and skill to succeed. When showtime comes, we are ready to perform. Other times, we may be successful in an overall capacity, but there is room to improve, or smaller areas where we failed to hit the mark. This requires evaluation to see the areas to improve. Self-evaluation may not be enough to catch all the errors. A second or third set of eyes can give you new perspective. Game-tape can be crucial for evaluating, because then we are not relying on memory or interpretation. Now, we understand how to achieve success learning from failure. Let us better understand what this creed is saying about success and failure. It starts off with "I am not judged..." The fastest way to quitting on a learning enterprise is to compare yourself to others, because there is always going to be someone better to put yourself down. It is demotivating. Instead, we should always compare ourselves to our self from the previous day or week. Focusing on our own progress is a great measure of success while building confidence and momentum. Progress is also about failure, where you have understand where the starting place compared to the current place is to know when you have achieved a level of success. My dojo takes the same approach, focusing on progress, consistency, and effort for considerations towards rank elevation. Perfection is never required. These considerations get tighter the higher one ranks, but the instructors and leaders of the dojo would never judge one person against another for rank. The last three words, "Keep on trying!" ties the creed together. This isn't the same try as Yoda refers to in "Do or do not... there is no try," or Mr. Miyagi's "Karate guess so" grape analogy. This try is about persistence, because success, failure, and progress are all part of the process of never giving up. Persistence to achieve your goal is a requirement to succeeding. Without persistence, you give up when you meet failure. Without persistence, you won't keep practicing to make progress. Failure is inevitable. It is what you do after that matters. To be successful, we get back up, we learn from to failure, and most importantly, we keep on trying. With persistence, progress is inevitable. With persistence, success is only a matter of time. I like the way Jason Nesmith from Galaxy Quest says it: "Never give up, never surrender." My Main Quest and Mission: My mission is to be the best Jedi I can be. My main quest is always to enhance my overall health, fitness, and knowledge to be prepared for whatever challenges life could throw at me. As a Jedi, I need to be able to help people, whether that is a life threatening situation or just a charitable one. There is no end in Jedi training for every light cast a shadow somewhere. Instead, it is a journey of self-discovery and compassion for others. World 6 Level 3 Challenge: FITNESS: Cardio: Speed and Stamina - Run twice a week. Include sprints and distance. The goal is to get faster and build stamina, but I have to set a starting block to decide where the finish is. Time to measure where I am for my 40 and 100 yard dash, 1 and 2 mile jogs. STA +1, DEX +1 Walking: Fortify the Spine - 10+ min outside with good posture, daily. CON +1 Exercise: HIIT Lifting and Bodyweight - 20+ min twice a week. STR +1, STA +1 Flexibility: Stretching and Physical Therapy - Daily exercises. Focus on hips, hams, and splits. DEX +1 Karate: Training and Practice - Two classes a week, practice for 20+ min twice a week. DEX +1, STR +1 DIET: Lean Body - I need to lose some weight, which starts with what I eat. 5+ cups of fruits and veggies. Cut down flour and corn based carbs at lunch and snack time. Fill up on spring mix. Time to start tracking the weight loss and body measurements again. 166.6 lbs yesterday. CON +1 LIFE: Write for Journey2U.org website, Facebook, and blog every day. WIS +1, CHA +1 Epic Quest - Complete something EPIC! I want to be able to look back at my four week challenge and say, "that was the challenge I did X". My challenges tend to be a lot of the same old. I've given myself plenty to improve in small steps, but I also want to see big strides in the things I've been working on. What box can I check? What have I been procrastinating? What am I focusing on? WIS +2, CHA +2
  6. I've been looking for something more fun. I need fun stuff. I feel stagnant lately. And when I thought about it... I realized I have learned things over the past few challenges. Crime is fun. (Thanks, Leverage!) 1990s feminism was amazing and very stylish, and often had a good soundtrack. (Thanks, Voyager!) I miss traveling. Or even going to some damn art museums. (Thanks, pandemic!) When you add all that together, there's only one thing that needs to be said: Do it, Rockapella! For the hottest G-rated femme fatale crime boss of all time, she never quite got the TV show she deserved, but she definitely got the theme song we all deserved. Well she sneaks around the world From Kiev to Carolina. She's a sticky-fingered filcher From Berlin down to Belize And she'll take you for a ride On a slow boat to China Tell me where in the world is Carmen Sandiego? Steal their Seoul in South Korea, Make Antarctica cry "uncle", From the Red Sea to Greenland, They'll be singin' the blues Well, they never Arkan-saw her Steal the Mekong from the jungle Tell me where in the world is Carmen Sandiego? She goes from Nashville to Norway Bonaire to Zimbabwe Chicago to Czechoslovakia And back. Well, she'll ransack Pakistan, And run a scam in Scandinavia, Then she'll stick 'em up Down Under And go pick pocket Perth She puts the "Miss" in misdemeanor When she stole the beans from Lima Tell me where in the world is Carmen Sandiego? (Oh, tell me where can she be!) Botswana to Thailand Milan via Amsterdam Mali to Bali Ohio Oahu Yeah, she flies around the globe, And she'll flim-flam every nation She's a double-dealing diva With a taste for thievery Her itinerary's loaded up With moving violations Tell me where in the world is Carmen Sandiego?
  7. Winter is the cold and often brutal season of darkness. But like all seasons, winter passes and spring is out there somewhere. And while I cannot stop winter from coming, I can prepare! My “winter” is a combination of things but mostly medical issues plaguing my family. My husband’s tumor has started to grow, which means he is preparing for some form of radiation treatment at MD Anderson in Houston, TX (an 11-hour drive south-east from our home). My oldest spawn is dealing with dysautonomia and we are fighting to get her to doctors (in Denver, CO which is a 7-hour drive north of our home) to verify if she has Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome. And the we fight to get her the help to deal with the mess of EDS, if that is what she has. My youngest spawn is struggling with my attention on her dad and sister. Not to mention she is dealing with some issues of her own that are not nearly as bad but she is 14 years old and the world revolves around her teenage self. My dad has some “spot” on his kidney that they are watching, but he is recovering nicely from his bladder surgeries. I am still trying to get all of my strength and mobility back in my hip, so I can get back to my normal self. This all is the “winter” that I speak of. So what will I do? I will do what I can! I’ll prepare for the possibilities, manage what I can, accept what I cannot change and take care of myself. Prepare I will do everything I can to be prepared for the next big change of plans. I will have options for whatever comes my way on the table and I will not discount something because if I do that is what will come my way next. I will be prepared to eat healthy, no matter the situation. I will find healthy food options that are portable and easy to store (including food in my car, which can get hot) for me and my family! I will have backup options for exercise on hand. I will have care options for my youngest spawn who had no big doctor visits and needs to be here in school. Manage I will manage the chaos to the best of my ability and take care of everyone, including myself, to the best of my ability! I will not spend $ on things that aren’t needed, because life is gonna get expensive dealing with all the upcoming travel. I will do my best to spend time with my family (one-no-one or all together) when ever I can. I will do my best to balance family, travel to medical facilities and work. But I will take care of the important stuff first (family) and the rest will get what is left of my attention. Accept I will accept that I can not do it all, but I will give it my best shot. I won’t be able to change medical outcomes, people’s attitudes or many other things…. I will accept what I can not change. If I can change it and it needs to change, then let’s do it! Myself In all this mess, I am still valuable and much needed. If I don’t continue to take care of me then it will all fall to hell! I have made good changes this summer so let’s maintain those habits. -Food Smaller breakfasts with no bacon or sausage and smoothies for lunch during the week. Less snacking & desserts. High protein and lower carbs because that is what my body likes. Exercise BJJ and core/conditioning class as much as possible. FitOn app is a great resource for backup exercise classes. And physical therapy twice a week, if I do classes, if not 3-4 times! Walking as much as possible. Hiking with friends. Mental If I am prepared for anything, manage life as it happens and accept the things I cannot change, I should be in good shape. With all the craziness that I expect, gratitude will be a vital part of not going bonkers in the next few months!!! Kindness I will make time to take care of me. I will follow my skin care regime. I will shower and shave my legs. I will color my hair as needed. I will wear pretty clothes and put on makeup. I will take breaks and bask in nature. I will make sure that I don’t lose myself if being the caretaker of everyone. (kidding but not kidding!) At the end of the day... No one is dying, there is a path forward and I can do this all this because it needs to be done. I got this. And I promise myself to ask for help when needed and let others help when they offer!
  8. 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. 🙄) 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.
  9. Mistr returns to reality Thanks to @sarakingdom for the inspiration for this challenge. I spent the last week of the previous challenge on a cruise ship visiting coastal Alaska. It was stunningly gorgeous, and far, far away from my normal reality. Having a week where I had no responsibilities was very strange. On port days I went on hikes and went shopping with my mom. On sea days we went to talks by the naturalist and the port historian and read books. No cooking or cleaning. The last time I had a week with no responsibilities was fall 2019, when I did a week-long retreat (sesshin) at a zen monastery. My earlier vacations this year were to my family's cabin. That is a lovely break from normal routine, but we still have to do cooking and cleaning. There is always some project that needs to get done while we are there. It felt very strange not to have a to-do list on the cruise. I missed my normal life a lot. That said, my approach to normal life could use some improvement. Goals: 1. Implement new exercise plan. I just met with my physical therapist and am done with the latest round of PT. She recommended that I keep doing side-steps with a resistance band, leg-lift alphabet writing and foam rolling. My left hip is still not as strong as the right and my IT bands are super tight. I was doing some PT exercises, some yoga and some hiking while I was on vacation. Strength and cardio have been lacking. Now I need to come up with a good all-around plan that will get me back in shape. I would like to get back to doing aikido twice a week. I may talk to the personal trainer at work if I get stuck. 2. Keep doing zen. It makes a big difference in my ability to put up with annoying stuff and make good decisions. 3. Do creative projects. These give me a sense of accomplishment and progress. I selected the "Practice Creativity 101" mission on the NF app to remind me to do this. I did this once before and it helped. 4. Get on top of my &^%$#(@! finances and stay there. I used to be on top of things. I've been sticking my head in the sand for the last year. I may find that the crawling feeling of dread I have is justified, but I will be able to do something to fix it. I have to get delayed tax info to my accountant by the 15th. That will be the first step. 5. Flexibility in household tasks. Concentrate on doing the things that I care about. I can let everything else go unless I get a specific request from Dumbledore or Elf.
  10. Hello everyone! I am Aquarii, your resident element of chaos trying to learn how to become an element of controlled chaos 😂 For those of you who don't know me, hello! I love seeing new faces around here. For those of you who already know me, I am sorry. Jk. Welcome back, my wonderful friends. The last couple months have been pretty crazy. At the start of the last challenge, I left my job due to the environment spiraling into something very toxic. I have yet to find a new job, but I do have an interview coming up in a few days, and it happens to be for a place I would really love to work with, so fingers crossed there. Earlier this year, I was diagnosed with bipolar II (probably, the jury is still partially out on that one) and have been on a journey to better understand and manage it. Last week, my apartment management decided to inform me that they are raising my rent by about 15%, which serves to motivate me that much more to get a new job position and get out of this place. Anyway, on to the reason for the title of this challenge. Over the last year, the style of fitness that I choose to do has been changing. Avoiding gyms for Covid forced me to focus a lot more on bodyweight workouts with very minimal weight, and I have found that I much prefer working with bodyweight, calisthenics, and bands instead of iron and heavy weights. It just fits a lot better with my interest in functional fitness. Once I am back in a position with a little more disposable income, I would like to start taking a few dance classes again. And, my partner and I have decided that we want to get into martial arts as a couples' activity. He has always had an interest in martial arts, having done some as a kid, and I have always wanted to learn a martial art. So, it seems like a perfect way to increase our fitness while learning something fun together. I don't know if we will be able to join the dojo or if I will be able to get into a dance class this challenge, but at the very least, I want to focus my training around preparation for it. Improving joint stability, range of motion, and muscle/cardio endurance are all going to be a big part of my training this challenge. Because my fitness is going to be heavily centered around bodyweight training and martial arts prep, it seemed like a perfect time to multiclass outside of my little corner of the forums. If you all have any recommendations or tips, I am always open to your advice and ideas. I only have a minimal idea of what I am doing, so I will take all the help I can get. Anyway, challenge goals: Bladesinger - Martial Arts, Dance, and Bodyweight Training - (STR) Strength and Agility: Bodyweight workouts 3x/week with focus on joint stability and muscle endurance - (DEX) Balance and Coordination: Yoga and/or stretching 3x/week with focus on flexibility and range of motion - (CON) Stamina: 20min+ walks/jogs 3x/week with focus on improving cardiorespiratory endurance Bladesinger - Mental, Intellectual, and Passion Training - (INT) Intelligence: Read 6 books - (INT) Intelligence: Complete 6 modules of Health Coach certification course and study for Nov. Personal Training exam - (CHA) Charisma: Choose one performance-based activity (music, dance, or acting) to practice at least once per week - (WIS) Generativity and Legacy: Watch a documentary each week on a topic related to minimalism, protecting the environment, society/activism, etc *Note: If you are interested in learning more about my leveling system above, check out the full leveling map in my Battle Log.
  11. Zero week. Day one. My last challenge was over a year ago. I was training to prepare for an intense period of zen practice called sesshin. While my training went well, I experienced a brain injury caused by a series of seizures. Since then, I have regained my ability to walk and speak clearly. I started working again in July. My over arching goal is to return to my dojo ready for anything. This challenge will reflect my first steps in preparation for my pilgrimage. Goal #1: Eat without distraction This will encourage mindfulness with eating. I tend to make better choices with nutrition and pay more attention to my level of hunger when I pay attention to what I am doing. In my life, this primarily means avoiding scrolling on my phone and not eating while driving. Goal #2: Move every day I am still overwhelmed with keeping up with domestic tasks and work. Whether I go on a several mile hike or take my dogs on a quick walk, I commit to move each day. I will try to incorporate sword cuts and will go to the ocean or mountains at least once each week. Goal #3: Keep up the good work I have been an occupational therapist for awhile but have always worked in the community or in mental health. I am currently working in a hospital. Interestingly, I find working in the hospital to be a good counterpart to rinzai zen training. I need to be aware of my surroundings and ready to act appropriately at all times. Working with people who have COVID-19 requires compassion and courage. Knowing when to push someone and when to encourage rest requires I practice wisdom. I will be a modern day samurai one day, gosh darn it. Aloha and mahalo for reading.
  12. Finally getting back into a routine with the arrival of baby #2! It was recommended by @Sloth the Enduring to consolidate threads so I’m going to be posting my challenge and daily logs all right here. Still a bit sleep deprived but will be posting more soon. Thanks for all the well wishes!
  13. 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!
  14. It always seems that I make the most progress in my life when something negative impacts me. It is those times when I can channel my emotions into motivation and fight back. I am trying to find that fighting spirit right now. There are so many petty things that I could get angry about, but overall my life is pretty good. Not to mention I don't do well mentally if I focus on all the petty little things. The challenge is to find things to fight for that don't drive me totally crazy. Here are my ideas: First and foremost I will fight for my girls. Both of them have been diagnosed with challenges in this last year. (ADHD, anxiety, depression, dysautonomia and we are looking into potentially more stuff) I am struggling to help them but I keep trying. I'm starting to become irrelevant as a parent (less influential in their world) but I can still help. What do my girls need from me at this time? They need to see me fight through and make progress. They need to see my dedication and focus on improving myself. I highlight that because I need to remind myself of that too. I will fight for my husband. There are days when jui-jitsu isn't something I want to do anymore. However, BJJ is my husband's saving grace. It gives him a passion to pursue, something to study/learn, it keeps him moving (and so much more healthy) and it is a social place where he has found his tribe. These are all the reasons why I still do BJJ. I love BJJ for what it has done for my husband and I will continue to support him with it for as long as I can. I will fight for myself!! Sometime I put myself on the bottom of the list. Sometimes I get so overwhelmed with everything that I rush to zone out in a book rather than take care of me. My body is healing and I need to work with my physical therapists to get both strength and mobility back. I also have physical therapy exercises that need to be done and I will work with the physical therapists to regain my strength and mobility. M I will fight to keep my wardrobe. This sounds shallow, but I like my clothes and I'd rather spend my money doing fun things rather than buying new clothes. How will I do all of this? I have 1.5 more paid months of Noom. I will use it for the this challenge. I will focus on food and weight tracking as well as a review of the lessons it provides. I will work on strength and mobility. Attending core and condition classes, trying to get back to BJJ classes, stationary bike rides, walking and hiking. 2-4 classes per week 3 walk/hikes per week Yoga/stretching/mobility - I need to work this back into my life!!! and whatever else my PT says to do... and... I'm thinking that maybe I need to do something else, but maybe not. I'll update if needed I am so ready to get back to it with a solid plan!
  15. Challenge goals: Walk Meditate Study Bonus: Do logical things when there is emotional resistance. Stardate: Week 0 Day X Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat Sun Journal Fitness Vulcan Meditation Study Daily Schedule Planning Daily List Generator & Tracker
  16. GONE TURBO It has been more than a year since my last challenge. I decided to take a break from NF while I sorted through the pandemic, teleworking, and virtual relationships. It was a good plan, because each day presented new obstacles and challenges while navigating to best ways for finding time and space for fitness and karate training, adjusting to maintaining healthy meals at home, and staying productive at work and in my different self-development programs with the myriad of distractions. Planning a 4 week challenge would have been impossible, because I would be course correcting daily. I took my time and built new routines understanding that they may be temporary. Over time, I developed my new normal with virtual and hybrid Toastmasters meetings, virtual gaming with friends, moved to a new gym, and working a hybrid schedule for work with some telework built in. Some things have been able to return to normal such as karate training, DnD, visiting family and friends, and working on-site but with known risk. The biggest change came in the last month where I launched my own website: Journey2U.org . I started a blog and coaching business to help others. It is in it's infancy, but it is a project I have been dreaming of launching for a very long time. Having it out there, I am living that part of the dream and building a new future for myself and others. With all these changes, it feels like I am not just in a new world, but like I am playing a whole new game. I'm taking a page from the movie "Wreckit Ralph". I've Gone Turbo jumping games. So now, here we go with another episode of The Exciting Adventures of JediNickD! It was a long time ago in a galaxy far, far away that I joined this site and started my first challenge. As a Ranger, I tried to Do All The Things in World 1, my first extended stay at NF through 22 challenges where I learned how to develop and pursue health and fitness goals utilizing daily, weekly, and monthly routines. I took a hiatus from NF and came back with a better focus for my goals where I warped to World 2, which I defeated in an Epic Boss Fight slaying some mighty big life goals. In World 3, I hopped over to the Assassins and continued to develop my fitness, getting my body in the best shape of my life, even with the Degenerative Disc Disease, Arthritis, Disc Fissures, and more. Through physical therapy exercises and karate, I have maintained my core and back muscles to ease the pressure off my spine, but in the end I defeated World 3 by transforming my life into a new form. With chiropractic care healing my spine, reaching the high ranks at karate, blazing through the new Toastmasters education program called Pathways, and working to complete Novice rank at IJRS, World 4 was something new everyday. I have moved over to the Monks to reach for more diversity in my workouts and culture as my physical and mental training focus has been more on my karate training. As I actively took on more responsibility of coaching, mentoring, and teaching in all aspects of my life, I formed a different me on World 5. Now, I have Gone Turbo into World 6. Every day, I just keep on L-I-V-I-N: fighting the good fight, lighting it up, and leveling up my life!  Challenge Lesson: "I Promise..." I had a promise to keep. When I decided to take a break from NF and other online communities during the pandemic, it was to focus on my family, my friends, and my self. The pandemic raised my concern for all those I hold dear to the highest level. I had to check in with them to know that they are ok, they know how to protect themselves, and they understood the severity of COVID-19. Prior to March 2020, I had spread my online network so wide, that I wasn't making space for direct one-on-one time with my immediate family. I didn't know how my parents were really doing. Same with my brothers and their families. I took the first few months focusing on that group, then expanded out to my closest friends. Those people I was accustomed to seeing face-to-face every week or month had to receive my attention. It was part for my own sanity, but also so that they would know my family and I were there for them. It was a promise that I had made when I was just a kid, but one that formed my personal values and philosophy. Care for others. Start with the self as you can not help others unless you can help yourself. Prioritize caring for family. Include close friends who need more close family. Identify friends and family who need caring, but do not neglect others who require less. Keep it going beyond close family and friends by extending caring and compassion to everyone. When my karate dojo switched to virtual classes, one of the first homework assignments was to write about how our White Belt creed applies to our actions during the pandemic. The creed is below: I wrote about how I would be doing self-care with daily goals to work towards. I explained how I had already been applying the creed to my life. Lastly, I wrote how I would help others through the pandemic with caring, with spreading knowledge of the virus and how to stay safe, and with adhering to policies and mandates to keep others safe. I explained that the last two sentences define the approach to doing these things. It wasn't just about avoiding the virus, but about doing "what is right". And not just what I feel is right, but what others feel is right too. Since I wrote that, "what is right" feels like it is under attack. You will find on social media and in the news that many of the safeguards against contracting the virus have been politicized by both sides, because individual freedom is a very important concept in the USA. I find the simple solution to understanding where "what is right" falls is understanding the line where an individual freedom begins to harm others or step on others individual freedom. The second part is defining "what is wrong" by understanding risk and what is an acceptable risk. This leads to the complex discussion how the good of the many can out-weight the good of a few. It is a discussion with multifaceted angles and hypotheticals, which is not necessarily where I am going with this. Getting back to risks, with critical thinking and compassion, one can navigate to a solid conclusion, but will always find themselves falling somewhere on the political spectrum, thus alienating some people in the process. If you leave compassion behind, then the critical thinking can lead to absurd conclusions. If you leave critical thinking behind, then compassion can lead to ineffective results. Balancing these while understanding effects of your assumptions and unknowns will lead to effective conclusions. Clearly communicating those conclusions is then important to gain support. But in the Twitter age, clear communication is TL;DR. My promise for dealing with COVID-19 is to "be part of the solution, and avoid being part of the problem." My Main Quest and Mission: My mission is to be the best Jedi I can be. My main quest is always to enhance my overall health, fitness, and knowledge to be prepared for whatever challenges life could throw at me. As a Jedi, I need to be able to help people, whether that is a life threatening situation or just a charitable one. There is no end in Jedi training for every light cast a shadow somewhere. Instead, it is a journey of self-discovery and compassion for others. World 6 Level 1 Challenge: FITNESS: Cardio: Speed and Stamina - Run twice a week. Include sprints and distance. The goal is to get faster and build stamina, but I have to set a starting block to decide where the finish is. First step will be to measure where I am for my 40 and 100 yard dash, 1 and 2 mile jogs. STA +1, DEX +1 Walking: Fortify the Spine - 10+ min outside with good posture, daily. CON +1 Exercise: HIIT Lifting and Bodyweight - 20+ min twice a week. STR +1, STA +1 Flexibility: Stretching and Physical Therapy - Daily exercises. Focus on hips, hams, and splits. DEX +1 Karate: Training and Practice - Two classes a week, practice for 20+ min twice a week. DEX +1, STR +1 DIET: Lean Body - I need to lose some weight, which starts with what I eat. 5+ cups of fruits and veggies. Cut down flour and corn based carbs at lunch and snack time. Fill up on spring mix. CON +1 LIFE: Write for Journey2U.org website, Facebook, and blog every day. WIS +1, CHA +1 Epic Quest - Complete something EPIC! I want to be able to look back at my four week challenge and say, "that was the challenge I did X". My challenges tend to be a lot of the same old. I've given myself plenty to improve in small steps, but I also want to see big strides in the things I've been working on. What box can I check? What have I been procrastinating? What am I focusing on? WIS +2, CHA +2 INCENTIVES!? No incentives this round. I need to come up with something new.
  17. The last challenge was an eye opener for me. Training more than once a day with short workouts and one longer workout at night was one of the most productive challenges I have done since I started doing them on here. It was a great learning experience and this challenge will be a continuation of the what I did but with more structure relating to timing and number of workouts per day. I still need to tune what I am going to do each workout but that's the chaos part. If I feel like bands, I do bands,. If want to do the sandbag or kettlebells, then I do. If I want to do the dumbbells or barbells, you guessed it. I have so many things to choose from, I won't know that to do but that's the best part. Captain Chaos approved! "Dunn dun DU-UH-UHNNNN!!" 1. Chaos training 5 days a week. At least three workouts a day but more if possible five days a week. I need to get the last workout in earlier in the evening because the late workouts before bed are keeping me too amped up to sleep. The early workouts are normally around the 10 to 15 minute mark but I am looking for at least 60 minutes a day going forward. 2. Karate training 3 days a week. I am training on two Zoom classes a week now but I want get in an extra class on my own each week. The Zoom classes are getting more intense and I feel like I am starting to feel like a beginner again, which means more training. 3. Recovery with meditation and flow training. Training as much as I did during the last challenge pushed me harder than before and a few of those days, I had some issues recovery from the workouts the day before. It wasn't the physical recovery, instead it was the mental recovery. I have a new meditation app that I want to explore and I have been studying the Flow training course that I bought some time ago and never really looked at until recently. Extra credit: Publish at least two videos for my training websites. This is something that I have wanted to do for years and even though they will be very short videos, I need to start somewhere and break away from the analysis paralysis. I guess I am really dating myself by positing a picture of Captain Chaos but Cannonball Run is one of my favorite movies.
  18. Mistr takes it on the road - August 2021 This challenge is starting and ending with trips. I will have two and a half weeks at home in the middle of the challenge. I'm going to have to stay on my toes to keep on top of everything. Right now I am at my family's lake place with Dumbledore. We spent a lovely day exploring Duluth on the way here. After that I took some much needed down time. Dumbledore is under deadline for an academic paper, so he has mostly been working. Today is our last full day here. I am doing all the housecleaning and he is writing. I'm a little salty about that, but I am also proud of him and want to support him. I am planning on asking him to do housecleaning at home to even the score. This weekend I will be in the Twin Cities visiting people. I'm spending most of Friday with my mom. I have lunch plans for Thursday and Saturday with close friends who I have not seen in person in years. I'm also hoping to see my brother. I may run into other friends, but at this point I feel like my dance card is full. The last week of the challenge I will be on an Alaskan cruise with my mom (crosses fingers). We were planning a trip through the Canadian Rockies, but between the fires and COVID she decided it was too risky. The cruise is all technically in the country and requires all passengers to be vaccinated. She went on a similar trip 25 years ago with my dad, but I have never been to Alaska. It should be fun. To add to the fun, I'm hosting my spinning group on Monday, August 23. I need to get my family room/work area cleaned up to host guests. The rest of the upstairs is not bad right now, but not at a party level of neat either. I've done pretty well on sitting zen and doing hip exercises from my PT while traveling. My main goal is to keep both those up. This challenge is going to be a whirlwind for me.
  19. Continuing the theme from last challenge because, frankly, I still have more work to do. "Civilize The Mind, but Make Savage The Body" Plan 1) Civilize The Mind a. Tai Chi Practice twice weekly (at least 15 minute session) b. Daily meditation (at least 10 minutes) 2) Make Savage The Body a. Eat healthy, whole foods at least 80% of the time b. Track ALL food c. Weight Training session 3X weekly (at least 20 minute session) d. Movement EVERY day (break a sweat)
  20. Luciana Valerosa Culming - Come back Hi, I'm back again. I'm Kate. I'm 34 years old now. I fell off the saddle again and try to get back on. So this is a respawn challenge. I would have started a week ago, but I caught a flu and then I thought it was better to do four weeks than waiting again and not trying at all. My long term goals: - lose weight (I haven't weighed in again. But I guess it's about 30 to 40 pounds I should lose. I'm a bit scared.) - get back into exercise (I used to do sports daily, now I struggle with getting in 10k steps a day) - sleep hygiene and coffeine intacke - meet some folks (corona was't good for my social life) - finance (I have an excel sheet, but I only use it every few months) - Spend time with the cats regularly (When I get depressed I don't play with them enough) - mental health, mindfulness Challenge goals: - 10k steps or small workout 5 days a week - get into bed before 22:30 (without my phone) - get the finance sheet up to date before the next challenge (I haven't updated it since March, so this will be a big task. I need to write down my expenses from March till the end of August.) And now time for some motivational music - Triggerwarning swear words:
  21. "I am become terror, the unseen predator, a rupture that obliterates without warning. Alone, the hordes of Enoch will fall before me. but together this entire planet will fear us. The Anomaly alters us each in our own ways but we are drawn down the same road into the dark heart of creation.. I will find the Source - whatever it holds, whatever it takes." Welcome to the Sanctum Parabellum, the Last Stronghold and Fortress-Monastery of Harrgath on Asgard. Cry Havoc! and let slip the lion of war. This challenge represents a return to the earlier theme of a sanctum from which to launch my campaign against bad habits and negative behavior or thinking patterns; here shall be the Fortress-Monastery where I dwell, preparing for chaos' machinations, and weaving a mythology while forging my mind/body into a prodigal [Artifact] worthy of the gods. Just like a 40k Custodes or Primarch, any Asgardian or an Outrider, I am continuously striving for my version of exemplary magnificence. You may think the storm is your ally, but you merely sheltered against it. I was born into it, molded by it... after all these years, I am the storm. Nothing is forbidden, anything goes. It's godhood... or perish. [Sanctum Parabellum Quest Log] [Cover is for Cowards]: You're a biological sledgehammer; act like one and chuck yourself into the fray! Go pound sand, dirt, or pavement like an god among men through daily mileage; runs, walks or rucking. [Powers On Tap]: Feel that tingling in your fingertips? Your powers are ready to be unleashed. Don't keep them waiting! Master the storm through (6) workouts per week. [Kill to Heal]: There's no use sitting back and licking your wounds; want your health back? Go out there and take it. Violence breeds vitality (and the meek will never inherit the earth), so keep to my Nutri-3 rule: vitality through tracking, 500g veggies, and participation in 12lbs/12weeks PVP). And finally, a guiding philosophy to add - you have to [Think Aggressively]: Complete my daily Yoga practice. "You waste your gifts running errands for them, trying to win their meaningless, endless war. You're not like them anymore." "So what, I should play at being a god, like you?" "I am not playing."
  22. Sooo I fell off the face of the Earth last week because surprise! Roofing. Which is to say, I found out midday Friday our roofers were going to be around to replace the roof Monday. Roofing is done but not without discovering a family friend hired to insulate the roof 5 years ago snowed us and pocketed the cash, and discovering the leaky bastard skylight did a number on the roofing boards and a bunch needed replacing. And now I am out an additional 5.2K beyond budget (but like for 1, I can't not have a safe roof and the insulation will pay for itself in 2 years). Bastard skylight is gone and good friggin riddance to it (the previous owner was a damn fool to think a skylight is a good idea in a climate that can swing between -40 and +40C in a single year. There's not a sealant on this Earth that can tolerate that. Buuut I have had a LOT of stress in the past few months and am feeling rather like a bit of metal that's been bent back and forth a bunch. I am feeling cranky and rigid and brittle and argumentative. Too much strain has built up and I need to basically take some time to rest, rebuild & repair my brain. On the upside! I am nearing the 30lbs lost since Xmas benchmark. Challenge this time is to embrace opportunity to de-stress. I am not sure what it's going to look like (aside from defending my vacation in July jealously), but I will spend a few days figuring it out to start.
  23. 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.
  24. I know where I am at. I know where I want to be. I know what I need to do to get there. So why don't I make the choices I need to make to get to where I want to be? I have been learning about decision fatigue. I make great choices earlier in the day but by the evening, I'm tired and mentally exhausted. I don't make the best choices in the evenings. I think that I need more encouragement to make better choices and build those habits that I want to have. Can you send me your favorite quotes, memes or other motivation media to help me through this challenge?!?! Thank you in advance. This challenge will be another simple one. Keep tracking using Noom I want to see my weight go down. I want to keep tracking food on a regular basis Keep up with the Noom lessons - they help! Eat better veggies and fruit filling foods with lower calorie density less added sugars Do physical therapy as much as possible. I have 4 months to get back into shape before I get released to do BJJ again. Build strength and flexibility back Increase stamina by walking or riding the stationary bike Here are some initial motivation thoughts from me:
  25. I'm late to the party again but showing up is better than not showing up at all, right? I had a big life change happen just before the new challenge started and I am currently unemployed. It was a stressful time leading up to it and it not only impacted my time but also my health. I was not sleeping well, my resting heart rate and blood pressure were a little elevated, my mind was all over the place and my energy was almost nonexistent. I was able to still workout but not at the same mental or physical level as before. The last two weeks have been incredible. I have been more active, doing things around the house and my heart rate and blood pressure are better than ever even though I turned 55 after my last day at work. My weight has dropped about 3 pounds, and I am noticing a decrease in stress related inflammation. I am eating better and am working toward a modified Keto diet. For this challenge, it's time to get my training back into high gear. I have been focusing on mobility work, lower body strength and core work, which is already progressing nicely. Karate is still my main focus, but I am starting to branch out from structured Shotokan roots and am focusing on the feeling of the techniques instead of the perfect form at the end of the techniques. The next part is starting my video channel of short videos that show the training techniques that I have learned over the last 17 years and offering some Shotokan Zoom classes. 1. Mobility, lower body strength and core 5 days a week. I have a good workout in place, but I want to keep it consistent. I will outline the workout shortly, but the goal is to do it 5 days a week. 2. Karate training 5 days a week for 20 minutes. I do more than 20 minutes of training, but I also want to have enough energy to do the goal above. I am starting to do kata throughout the day to focus on the feeling of the movements. 3. Create a plan for the videos and Zoom classes by challenge end. This has been in my mind for some time now and I already have a student that I train through Zoom for some time now. Extra credit: Dig deeper into a relaxation and flow state. Even though I am more relaxed than I have been in many years, I want to get back to mediation and try to mix it with stretching. I have a program that teaches flow state that I haven't started and that is something that I have wanted to do but didn't have the time until now.
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