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  1. More details to (probably) come later when I'm not typing on my phone, but the idea behind this challenge is to use this time period quite a bit differently than my normal. Instead of setting a thousand ambitious goals and trying to "go go go" all the time, I'm hoping to use this first chunk of the year to reset entirely, focusing on connecting with family - especially our brand new 3 week old baby girl! - and personal joys as much as possible while recovering from the birth (and the continuous challenge that was August-December 2023). Winter is the time the world sleeps and resets for the next growing season, and for once I'm going to try to do the same. Granted, being the primary caregiver for a newborn isn't exactly the definition of relaxing, and there are some things that will need to be done to make sure I'm not totally screwed come March when my maternity leave ends. But I so rarely get - or make - opportunities to slow down, and I fought for so long to get to this point that it would be a straight up disservice to myself not to find as many delights and refuges as I can before picking up the journey again. After all, even the Fellowship rested when and where they could 😄 Quest One: Feed the baby and myself - Expand the frozen breastmilk stash (current stash: 34 oz; first goal: 75 oz) - Increase supply and feeding times to combat failure to thrive diagnosis - Add nutrition goals as challenge progresses (ideas: minimum protein, increase produce, decrease box meals, try new foods) Quest Two: Reconnect - With self by finding time for abandoned personal hobbies (quilting/sewing and reading are the two I'm thinking about right now, might change/add as challenge progresses) - With family (older son and husband) via shared activities Quest Three: Reflect - Update both kids' photo journals at least once a week - Restart personal journal writing at least once a week
  2. Decided to wait on starting my first challenge post until after my camping trip was done. Anywho, the last one basically petered out. I lost steam with the "project" approach, probably because it got to be way too much to keep up with. It ended up being way too granular which, though it got me off to a good start, turned keeping up with this stuff into a chore. More importantly (and in keeping with what Mrs. Keys learned from her nutritionist), it resulted in having things occupy my waking mind that didn't need to be there. (She told my wife that she wasn't in support of tracking food-She said it causes you to think about food all the time. You should do your best to eat good food, but then when you're done, don't think about it). And it's way too easy to get wrapped around the axle with my own shame issues of having to follow "the rules" (even my own ones) way too precisely. So, I'm going to think of things at a much higher level. My only real activity for the challenge will be to post here each night. That post is going to entail an evaluation of my progress towards my goals-Eat better and do creative things. Yes, they're not goals--not the SMART kind--fine, call them "mission statements" or whatever. I intentionally want them NOT timebound, NOT specific, NOT measurable... Think of them more like stars or the rise in terrain away from a river when you're trying to make it back to the road. They represent the general direction that I want to head, and by virtue of checking in each night and evaluating how I handled the day, I can at least know whether I moved closer to where I want to get or farther away. And I know this works for me because I've already seen it. At the beginning of this year, I decided that I wanted to step up my cooking game, and over a few challenges, I tracked some things, yes, but then I stopped paying attention to it and stressing about it. Yet I still made progress toward that goal because I enjoy cooking, and separate from my challenges, I started practicing more and learning more and thinking more strategically about my cooking. Yes, committing to X meals over the course of 5 weeks lit a fire under my butt, but it was all the other stuff that's much harder to measure that kept it lit. I experimented, got curious, my wife went to see a nutritionist and learned stuff, not to mention I've been doing my own therapy work, learning to accept my mistakes, not to mention reading up on the principles of cooking, etc. So, here's the plan: I'll evaluate my meals-Breakfast, Dinner, and everything else. I'll also evaluate my progress towards piano and my other various flights of fancy. No structured scale. Just this: Am I moving closer to my goals (eat better and do creative things) or am I moving further away, and how do I feel about that? Only one rule: Post each night (unless something more important causes me to miss a night, in which case, that's okay, too)
  3. On Sunday, I was getting ready to plan out the next challenge and rebelled against the complicated schemes I was trying to spin. So, I backed off and let the brain mull stuff over while I spent a few hours painting at our Rotary club's affordable housing project. By evening, I was so tired that I didn't have the energy to be anxious anymore (I also biked to the site .... so I'm channeling Indiana Jones at the moment), and I came to the conclusion that I should do some recycling of successful components from prior challenges and aim to keep it simple and (dare I say) fun over the summer months. By the end of the challenge, I want to: Weigh <= 150 pounds again Have the boxes unpacked or tucked into organized sections of the basement (bonus objective ... have the workout space set up) Have had FUN .... ok, hard to quantify, but there ya go Still playing with the D & D theme here, and so the "party" refers to the different characters journeying with me to ultimately deal with the dragon terrorizing the Sword Coast. There probably will be no actual beaches, but I am hoping to spend some time by the local pool. I do have my new, serious swimmer swimsuit on hand. Still .... "party" invites lots of memes and video sharing. Plan: Rejoin Weight Watchers with the ultimate goal of 135 pounds, which is my happy, healthy weight. Should be achievable in 9 months. I will use my icons tracking from a previous challenge to report daily progress here. Daily cardio using the random map. This gives me some guidance and inspiration, but .... every day, I have a choice of 8 directions in which to travel!! And, like "42", "walking" is always the correct answer. Use icons for tracking accountability. "Other" movement daily, based on the classes of party members*. Use icons for tracking accountability. Unpack a box or organize stuff for 15+ minutes daily. Checkboxes. Weekly-ish: Do a grandmother level hero workout for TREASURE!! Trying to mix it up a bit with workouts, each class in the party (a couple of us are multi-classing it): Inspired by: https://www.dmsguild.com/product/419273/Manual-of-Gainful-Exercise-DD-Subclass-Workouts Artificer: use the machines at the gym, bike ride, or a fitness game Bard: Dance or music based workout Druid: animal flow, swimming, yoga Paladin: free weights or kettlebells Ranger: CrossFit, archery practice Rogue: bodyweight, gymnastics moves (especially pullups and rope-progressions) Wizard: Fitness video, yoga I'm not going to be too hard on myself. I'd like to really mix up workouts for the summer and do one for each class each week. But .... trying to avoid the overwhelm too ......
  4. Hey, hey! I'm not quite as fancy-free as these lil meatballs, but my big show is over, I have some fun summer travel coming up, and life is feeling pretty sweet. Last challenge I had goals for each of the core D&D stats. I did well on CHA (music and dance practice) and STR (all the deadlifts and bench presses); reasonably okay on CON (limiting alcohol and tracking calories + protein) and WIS (practicing morning gratitudes and mindfulness), plenty room for improvement on DEX (knee physio) and INT (keeping the momentum going on the research paper I'm supposed to be writing). Still figuring out whether I will focus on areas of weakness from the last challenge or just double down on what I'm doing well at and lean into the spikiness! I guess that's what zero week is for. I can share that by the end of this challenge I'd love to weigh under 150, have that blasted paper submitted somewhere and off my desk, and be moving around more nimbly on the roughed up knee than I can currently. Now how am I going to get there? I'll figure that out soon. Today is good so far, walked doggoes breakfasted, showered, walked to campus good meeting with student A good meeting with student B hiked over to little religious-school campus where the food is better than it is on my campus got trapped there awhile by deluges of rain, but had my laptop with me and made some good paper progress! updated academic society mailing list for the upcoming conference Still to do, zip back over to my campus, specifically the gym strength workout Zumba class at 5! walk or bus home, depending on how legs are feeling food prep That's all for now! Rain looks like it is lightening up (boy did we need it) so I'm going to beetle over to the gym while the getting's good.
  5. And we're back after a several week-long (and much needed) hiatus and ready to roll. Got a few more bad habits to shake, a couple of updated perspectives, etc. etc. One thing I want to start doing this time around is to plan my challenges a little bit better. In the past, there's been a focus on building healthy habits through identifying things that I do routinely (each day, each week, etc) which is useful, but is also incomplete. Building habits without any particular end in mind feels too much to me like just building a habit for the sake of a habit. It doesn't go anywhere. There's no endgame. Instead, it felt too much like an endless slog of self-improvement protips. So, different approach. Let's strategize, do some good ol' fashioned SWOT* analysis, and figure out a strategy to get where it is that I want to go. *SWOT Analysis-Strengths-Weaknesses-Opportunities-Threats. Step 1: Decide on End State. Step 2: Assess Current State. Step 3: Assess Threats and Weaknesses. Step 4: Assess Opportunities and Strengths. Step 5: Devise and Execute Strategy. 1. Decide on End State. At the end of the five four week challenge, here's where I'm hoping to be: 1. Eating out limited to once per week. 2. Sufficient meals prepped to enable #1. 3. Significantly curbed "zonk out in front of computer" time. 4. Awareness of what I'm putting in my body. That means tracking my food. I'm not happy about this one, and it's going to be hard, but it is what it is. I need to be aware of how much food I'm putting into my body. I'll need to do my utmost to keep my perfectionist tendencies from short-circuiting my goal here. Progress, not perfection. 5. Moving more. Less time on my butt in front of a computer and more time on my feet. 6. Increasing my time spent working on the weekends to take pressure off of my weekday work time. 7. Get back to regular (daily) piano practice routines. Even 15 mins per day will be fine. It's high time I got back to that. ---- And just to have it down, let's add in a couple of things that I hope will happen but won't lose sleep if they don't. 7. Basement repairs finished. (Yes, we are 6 months from when the flood ruined our basement. Yes, the insurance company is being jerks about it. Yes, I'm extremely pissed.) 8. Significant progress made on building a new workbench / mitre saw station for the garage. (Ideally, it will be complete by then, but not stressing it if not). 2. Current State. Diet is not so good. There's the recurring "something sweet" theme that happens almost daily where my wife and I talk ourselves into getting something--Ice cream, chocolate, gummy worms, etc. to cap off the night (when I was a kid, my parents called this "bedtime dessert" and it became pretty much an expectation that we'd get some kind of candy bar or something right before laying down for the night). Then there's the beer that's also basically an every day thing, but with the occasional dry week or couple of days. Then there's the running out of stocked up meals in the fridge and just ordering out which is both bad for our bank accounts and our health. My weekday routine consists of getting done with the workday, cooking dinner (or ordering once the fridge stores run out), and then gaming until bedtime, usually while drinking a couple of beers. On weekends, I usually fill one day with some kind of project and then the other day with a marathon gaming session. My gaming has picked up significantly since I finished my second computer build, and I suspect that some of it is driven by being able to play games previously unplayable on my older machine. Some of it is also driven by a desire to make good use of my investment because some of those parts weren't cheap. When not doing that, I was mindlessly scrolling reddit, but that's been curtailed since the API controversy. Work could be more fun, but still feels kind of like a slog as I have to motivate myself to do most things. I enjoy my job, and I get to do a lot of the things that I find fun--reading about esoteric topics, writing, strategizing client engagements--but I get pre-occupied by cravings for video game time and goofing off time (or maybe just turn-my-brain-off time?). My wife and I both game a lot, mostly to distract ourselves from the stress of day-to-day life. I want more interaction with her as well which requires pulling my nose out of this machine. And piano basically hasn't happened at all since I moved it back into the unfinished basement when we bug-bombed the house a month ago. 3. Assess Weaknesses and Threats. Weaknesses: -Work takes up a huge chunk of my weekday time and energy, and cooking dinner takes another huge chunk, so I'm left with not a lot of time to do much during the week. -I've got workout equipment in the garage, but going in that building depresses me because there's a huge crack in the concrete, and every time I see it I think "This needs to get fixed, and damn is it going to cost me a lot of money." -My workout space isn't very organized. Weights and other stuff are stored on the floor or on top of coolers. Might not be a big deal to most, but I've learned that having an organized space is important to me. -I don't have much in the way of workout-appropriate attire. Shoes starting to show their age (and I don't think they're really running shoes per se). Also don't have much in the way of workout equipment, but I've got enough to get me by. -Fridge space is very limited due to having a small fridge. Kitchen storage space is also pretty limited. -I'm a perfectionist. I tend to feel waves of guilt when I'm not measuring up to my own impossible expectations. I don't post on here as much as I think I should or I lapse on a commitment to myself, and then it all falls apart. -My property is very shady which doesn't leave me much in the way of gardening options. Threats: -Gaming is really tempting now that I've got some beefier hardware, and it's hard to resist. -Cravings for beer or sweets hit and its all I can think about. These get especially pronounced when I have a hard day and just want comfort. -There's plenty of stuff that can quickly throw me into a shit mood which will easily derail any attempts at self improvement. There's domestic stuff to stay on top of. We're still battling flea issues with the puppies. The $#$%#$ basement still hasn't been fixed and our insurance company is being the opposite of helpful. Work has its various frustrations and stressors. And the money just doesn't come in as much as I'd like it to (it never does). -Work is getting more complex, and I'm now taking on tasks that I don't understand (more strategic layer stuff) and am leveraging down the stuff that's easy for me. That's the way this is supposed to work, but that doesn't mean I have to like it. -I've also been cajoled into coming in to the office at least once per week which cuts into my weekday routine significantly. It also means devoting resources to improving my wardrobe (which, let's face it, needed to happen regardless). 4. Assess Strengths and Opportunities. Strengths: -I'm a damn good cook, and I know my way around the kitchen better than the average bear. I also enjoy eating most vegetables. -I've got a supportive community, both here and IRL. My wife is also highly motivated in the journey to make ourselves healthier and happier. -I still have my health and my youth. My knees work fine. No major injuries or ailments to contend with. Same for my wife. -No kids or dependents aside from the critters, and none anticipated any time soon. -Cash flow is currently pretty good, and expected to improve as time goes on. -Work is pretty flexible if demanding. I don't have set office hours. As long as I get in my minimum amount of time each week, I should be good. I'm respected at my job, and I do good work. Opportunities: -Got several good grocery stores around. The usual suspects, plus a farmer's market or two within relatively short distance. -I do have the basic workout equipment. Weight set, Olympic bar, bench. There's a lot you can do with just that stuff. -Also some nice walking trails nearby. -Plus a kayak. -I've also got lots of tools in the garage-Enough to enable me to build the organizational tools that I require if I have to. I've also got various technology tools to help me out. And meal trackers have been getting better these days. 5. Devise and Execute Strategy. Whew. Okay last bit. In light of all that, here's the breakdown for this challenge. 1. Daily-Track basic meals in my meal tracker. I'm not going to shoot for catching everything. Just the easy stuff. I'm also not going to stress tracking "beer" in the tracker. I'll pick one "beer" that will serve as a default beer in the tracker, and each time I have one, I'll track it that way. (Meal planners seem to be notoriously bad at recording beer calories which drives my perfectionist brain crazy. [though this ought to be an indicator of how bad beer for you is in that the ingredient labeling standards don't appear to be nearly as robust?]) 2. Weekly-Devote at least 30 minutes each week to building out my recipe collection in my meal tracker to make #1 easier. 3. As needed-Computer time on a timer. I'll set a timer to monitor my computer time. Reporting here will be limited to just whether I did that for the day or not. 4. Weekly-Devote at least a portion of my weekend time to meal planning and prep activities. That includes cooking, but also grocery planning, shopping, etc. I also intend to cook at least a few dishes each week that can serve as staples (so a braise or some other kind of meal that I can mix and match with other stuff). 4b. Look up a video on how to re-heat rice. For some reason, every time I try to reheat cooked rice, the texture's always way too dry, so I end up throwing out leftover rice. 5. Daily-Step goal of 8,000 steps. 6. Weekly-Minimum 1 hour of weekend work. Rule: That hour must be spent ONLY on work tasks that I enjoy and that excite my curiosity. Save the unpleasant stuff for the work week. I want my weekend work time to be something that I look forward to and not something that I dread. 7.Daily-Min 15 minutes piano practice time. Downstairs in my unfinished basement if need be.
  6. Well! Here I am at 7 weeks pregnant, desperately trying to hold onto both this baby and my mental health. I'm not even going to pretend that this challenge is about much more than managing my panic spirals as I battle my way through the first trimester (hence the title) and pray the baby makes it to the end of June with me. I'm dropping the walking quest - I know, I can hear people saying "but it's good for pregnant women!" already. It's not something I feel up to most of the time and I'm struggling to care. However, I will be upping my nutrition quest for fairly obvious reasons. The work/school quest will still exist, though it won't be a giant focus once the school year ends on the 19th. The rest is mostly me trying to cling to whatever shreds of sanity I can salvage from the wreck that is my brain right now. Quest One: Nutrition Water: Still focusing on water, of course! Aiming to stay at 24 as a minimum but try to up to 32 when I can. Protein: My doctor says protein intake is super important, so I've been trying to get some protein-heavy foods in (hard boiled eggs, nuts, meat, cheese, etc.) I switched to greek yogurt for breakfast this morning and I'm going to try to keep that up (certainly not every day, but maybe twice a week?) and I also sometimes drink high protein Boost drinks. Iron: I'm far less concerned about iron, since I'm on a very high dose of an iron supplement and have been for several years now, but I'm on that due to persistent anemia so it's always something to keep an eye on. Thankfully a lot of iron-rich foods are also protein-rich foods (like meat and beans). Spinach and fortified cereals are also...not common in my current diet, but not totally missing either. General "balance": I know I'm continuing to break the SMART goals focus here, but oh well. I want to just generally feel decent about the variety of foods that I'm eating and feel like I've done what I can to help the baby grow. This is going to mean upping fruits and veggies, upping variety, and trying to minimize the random snacking on crap (especially with my emotional swings). Quest Two: Work/School Reckley: Grad class will be wrapping up even faster - this week, I think! I have been putting it off and putting it off because I just don't have the mental capacity for it right now. But I need to practice my final presentation, finish my playlist analysis thing, and prep for the final exam. Grading: Could be better, could be worse. Right now all my classes are caught up to about April 17th. I need to finish unit 6 for both French 1 and Spanish 2, knock out tests for everyone, throw something in quick for unit 7, and prep for final exams. Lesson Prep: Not usually such a problem for me, but this has fallen off bad lately. I'm not even ready to teach tomorrow yet and I have typically been a full week ahead this year. Spanish 2 is prepped through Wednesday only because my next OB appointment is Wednesday morning and I needed to make sure it wouldn't mess with them too much. Spanish 4 is prepped through Wednesday technically but that's only because they're on independent projects; French 1 is only prepped through tomorrow and Spanish 3 is only prepped through today. If possible, this can also include some planning for next year and prepping curriculum documents. Quest Three: Stay Sane Find a Few Coping Mechanisms: other than eating sugar and sleeping until July, of course. Ideally I'll be able to find some things I can do while at work, in public, etc. as well as at home in my free time. Right now my only real coping mechanism, besides the aforementioned eating sugar and sleeping, is intense daydreaming. Which works okay, but not in all situations for obvious reasons. Pick a Bassinet: IF (and that feels like a very big IF) all goes well with the pregnancy through this challenge, I want to buy a bassinet. We had one for my son that we borrowed from my sister-in-law, but we gave it back a long time ago (seeing as our son is now five!) And for some reason I feel like researching this is something I want to do despite being terrified of another loss. Keep Quilting: Part of me wants to pick out a quilt pattern to make for the baby. The other part of me says no way, too fast!! So for now I will keep focusing on trying to get some knots into the log cabin quilt so it can be (closer to) done. Currently at 270/450 knots needed to finish off the first quarter or so.
  7. This is me for the past… long while. Tired and unmotivated. And frankly, I still am. I know I’m capable of so much more, but I just haven’t had the energy for it. I have noticed that I get the most done during the school day. I am not able to wake up any earlier than I already do (trust me, I’ve tried); and by the time I get home from school, I’m so exhausted that I usually just lay down in bed for the rest of the night. So, I’m going to try a new exercise strategy this time around: Go to the gym while I’m on campus. Don’t expect to get it done at home. GO TO THE GYM. I also need to get a better handle on the things I put in my mouth! I am pretty good about meal prep and having healthy foods available; but while I’m at school, if I run out of snacks, the moment I become hungry I am tempted to buy food and drinks! That is a problem. I know I’m capable of much more than I’ve been doing, because I’ve done much more in the past. So I’m going to do my best to push through this tough time in my life, even if it’s a nanomoment at a time. I have it in me, somewhere. I just have to figure out how to unbury it. ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ I’ve started a bullet journal, and I’m going to design a spread in it to keep track of my goals: ~ work out AT THE GYM [3 times per week] ~ eat healthy [5 days per week] ~ didn’t buy consumables at school [5 days per week] [weekends don't count, cos I'm not at school anyways!! has to be during the business week] ~ read my Bible [3 days per week] [getting back into the habit, so starting small]
  8. Hi Everyone! I am having a moment with the colour goldenrod yellow. It's popping up everywhere for me right now: clothes, markers, shiny rocks. I've been looking into some of the symbolism of it and the knowledge feels grounding and informative. In particular, the stone Citrine is coming to mind a lot. Citrine is supposed to be a happy stone for channelling success, creativity, and willpower. It's also supposed to be good for digestion. These are key things I want in the front of mind for this challenge, so I'm going to be keeping a citrine in my pocket to remind me of my goals for the next little while. My primary goals for this challenge are movement and nutrition: -I want to continue trying to get my daily walk in with the goal of beating my 5600 step count on more than 15 days which is what I managed last challenge. -I'm going to try to do one Darebee workout a day. I fully expect these to be limited to upper body stuff I can do at the shop, but something isn't nothing. -I want to explore low carb eating again with a carb range of 50-75 g net carbs in a day and a minimum of 100 g protein. Fat will be a lever to use to help with satiety, but not something I'm going to eat just for the sake of hitting that macro. -I'm going to be trying to deliberately increase my fibre intake over the course of this challenge, with a goal of 25 g a day. This is a little more complicated without grains or legumes, but I've been reading and I think I can do it. Just a matter of affording it; groceries are getting more expensive up here. -I will be tracking my intake with MFP for the duration of this challenge so that I stay honest and on task. I'm not a huge fan of tracking, but the flexibility of low carb vs therapeutic Keto means I need to in order to balance variety and results. This means fighting with it when I batch cook things *sigh*. And I have my daily tracker in my Bujo for stuff like my water intake, fun/dishes/adulting, Tarot/meditation, etc, so that will be happening in the background. I plan to weigh in today and take measurements and then touch base with that again at the end of the challenge to see if the low carb is causing any change. Depending on what I find I may have to restrict my carbs further. I really hope that's not going to be necessary but PCOS is a stubborn disorder. A note about February 10-17: Dave will be home so my eating will be the best it can while still respecting if he wants comfort foods like his favourite pizza, etc, for the short window he is home. I expect to be more lax this week, but not use it as an excuse to go off the rails completely. I think that's it! Hopefully I can keep up with everything I've set out here. I'm hoping my competencies from the last challenge carry over. 😅 Thanks for being here! 💛
  9. Hi. I'm Stronkey Kong. I'm 38. I'm fat and I don't want to be fat anymore. I lift. I have a vague idea for how I need to eat to keep this weight loss + get stronker thing going. I write... in fact, I'm doing a writing workshop during this challenge. Also, I have weirdly intense hobbies that I tend to jump between at random intervals. Okay. Goals. Goal 1: DO NOT EAT A PIZZA As I've mentioned in the holiday mini. My worst habit/downfall is I'll go grocery shopping on the weekend, pick up a Meat Lover's-esque pizza and a bottle of wine/six-pack/booze/etc. and undo a week's worth of good eating in one evening. This challenge, I am not going to do this.(every week) Further, I'm going to track how I'm not eating a pizza. For the duration of the challenge I am going to avoid eating any ingredients that belong in that meal: 1 large meaty pizza and a bottle of wine. Those ingredients are: 12 servings of junky meat: any meat that can be described as fatty, salty, processed, cured, etc. 12 servings of cheese. 12 servings of junky carbs: white breads, pastas, desserts, candy, etc. 5 servings of alcohol. These are all foods I need to work on my relationship with, which is why they will be limited so much. Tomato sauce is fine. I'm going to track this by drawing a picture of a pizza, and drawing on the crust, cheese, and toppings, next to a bottle of wine that I'll fill up with reddish-purple ink. This will hang on the fridge. It will be an ever present visual reminder in my kitchen. And when I make mistakes, drawing stuff on will force me to spend time pondering my mistake. If I make it through the five weeks without eating a whole pizza, I can reward myself with a small pizza and a couple glasses of wine or beer. Other than that, I'm emphasizing proteins, fruits, and veggies, minimizing condiments, and judiciously adding whole grains and legumes for protein/mineral/fiber support. Goal 2: GREYSKULL and CARDIO Lift weights following Greyskull 3 days per week. 2x30 min med. intensity cardio sessions 2 days per week: stat bike, ring fit, racquetball, or any reasonable substitute. This has been going well the last two weeks. I just gotta keep doing it. Then I'm gonna take my 24 lbs. kettle bell to work. I don't have time for long walks... or even a good place to walk... when I'm at work, so I can do a quick KB sesh after food breaks. Not sure what. I just want to get my HR up and burn a few extra calories. Goal 3: COMPLETE MY WRITING WORKSHOP Starting Jan 15, by every Sunday I have to write 2500 words, and read up to 9 other people's 2500 words and provide feedback. Between now and then, I need to write 2500 words on a handful of projects, and pick one for the workshop. Goal 4: PLAY CHESS I've been on a chess kick lately. I used to play casually in high school. And the occasional game here and there. And I've been playing online games, and they stress me out in a weirdly good way. I've always wanted to really learn it and get good at it. Daily: play a game or study a game. (watching a YouTube video doesn't count... unless I set up the board and play through and analyze something I guess). Also, this counts as research for a middle grade novel I might do for the workshop... a portal fantasy about a chess prodigy. Goal 5: LEARN (at least some) UKRAINIAN. I've tried learning Slovene in the past as some way to connect to my own heritage, but resources are limited. Another way in is to learn another Slavic language. Though Russian is an obvious leader in terms of resources, learning Ukrainian is kinda trendy for solidarity. I started doing the Ukrainian course on Duolingo, and it's been fun and interesting so far. But I realized this morning all the sentences I've learned rely on an implied but omitted 'is.' I know no verbs, and the inflections are coming. Also, Pimsleur, I found out, is giving their Ukrainian course for free through 12/31/23 if you sign up by 12/31/22.
  10. I'm using this as a thread to log my workouts & nutrition as I train for the 2023 Crossfit Open in February. It is, as indicated above, 100 days away. Don't feel obligated to follow, I'm the worst at following other people.
  11. Hey, this is a super late add to this challenge, but I didn't feel like waiting for the next one, so, whatever. This is not a really "challenge-y" sort of challenge, just a place to log my workouts and nutrition for a while. Life has been kind of topsy-turvey for a while, and a lot of things have sucked ass, for a lot of people, not just me. So I want to spend the next three months just nourishing my body and seeing what can happen if I actually get some sunlight and a nutritious diet, and don't waste mental energy beating myself up for all of my real and imagined mistakes. I have a workout schedule to follow and a nutrition plan, but I'm not going to slavishly follow one eating style or workout program; I just want to experiment and see what happens. I don't have a huge event with a countdown timer or a dress to fit into. I just want to do stuff and have a good time. I'll probably post a bunch of images of women athletes for inspiration, in an attempt to make it interesting. I'm terrible about following other people's threads, so please don't feel obligated to follow mine.
  12. Back to another ‘I won’t be home for most of this Cycle’ challenge. It’s back to hotel life for a few weeks, and a movement shift is in order. I’m still looking to see if there are any good looking daytime yoga classes anywhere near where I’ll be, but thus far - nada. It looks like people are sliding from Ramadan timings to Summer Hours. Boo. That’s fine. I’ve got some inversion homework from one of my teachers, another that has moved to the UK has posted a host of YouTube flows, and I’ll have access to a fairly decent gym if I remember correctly. My big challenge is going to be doing what I need to do motivation-wise to ensure I get a good workout in (i.e. forcing myself to get ready out of order by wearing contacts + workout clothes to breakfast and showering after the gym), and not eating anything too crazy. Or at least not too many crazy meals. Alcohol won’t be an issue. Movement Get something done each day. A trip to the hotel gym, a yoga class out in town, a flow in my hotel room, a mall walk - something. Nutrition Simple breakfasts - most likely back to my egg/spinach/mushroom combo; if I remember correctly, this hotel has soy milk for coffee but that’s it on the dairy-free front. I *think* they also do eggs. At least scrambled. Don’t go too crazy at dinner - watch my hunger cues if I’m getting any that day, otherwise aim for 80% of my plate. Err on the side of veggies when possible. Other I’m bringing a big crochet project and my iPad for drawing, so should be good there. I had intended on bringing a sewing project as well, but didn’t have *quite* enough fusible fleece to complete 1 bag. Boo. I got everything I have cut though. I think that’s mostly it while we are gone. I need to do some scrapbook stuff finding/scrap filling once I get another book - it looks like my Smash Book journals may have been discontinued (at least on Amazon), so I need to find an alternative. I also want to continue working to step up my wardrobe game a bit and may look for some more “fun” pieces while we are gone. I got a super cute but plain orange sun dress while in Paris (I was excited to see a Uniqlo) and a really pretty silk scarf from the Van Gogh Museum I can use to zhuzh up an otherwise basic outfit. Hopefully I can still get away with the jeans I bought right before we left for at least most of the trip - I’ll mostly be living in lounge wear, but we will be hitting the mall pretty much every night. Should be enough a/c so I don’t melt completely. It’s only in the low 90s. I think that’s it for this challenge. The last week or so will be spent rebuilding my yoga schedule, snuggling the pups, and re-acquainting myself with the current grocery stock.
  13. I have always been a little unclear on the ecology of Tatooine. With no apparent sources of food, how does the planet support enough wildlife that the large reptiles such as the great Krayt Dragon have food sources? Yea, I get that they eat Banthas. But what do Banthas eat?? It's a puzzle. Still, I am keeping up with the theme and am still on the trail of the dragon. It's a wily beast that I have fought most of my life (hum ... shades of Moby Dick here ....). This challenge, I'm focusing on tracking and consistency. Overall, these are the main objectives: Research or learning something new ... this challenge, it is the CrossFit Masters Athlete Training PDF Nutrition improvement - WW ... aim to log daily and stay within points each week Exercise focus and socializing outside of work - CrossFit 10+ classes Service component - Charity Miles app and trying to get in about 7+ miles per week Spiritual-emotional component - daily prayer(book) I am tracking in Habitica where we have a Nerd Fitness party and a Guild (join us!!). It might be a bit ambitious, but I have 12 habits that I am tracking. Success is to get 70% or 8 habits tracked each day: 1. Track 7 streaks each day = Success 2. Track meals daily 3. Exercise daily 4. Floss 5. Skin care each night 6. Study master's athlete training daily 7. Stretch 5+ minutes daily 8. Prayer/meditation daily 9. Get 7 hours of sleep daily 10. Once per week - stay within Points values 11. Check in at NF daily 12. Drink 32 oz water daily My primary tools this challenge are: Magic bottle of motivation (my 32 oz water bottle) Belt of swift travel (FlipBelt) Lenses of far-seeing (contact lenses) Tome of Mastery (CrossFit masters training recommendations PDF and other references) Registry of Deeds (Habitica)
  14. Well, I'm late, but at least I'm here? Mixed bag of news - we found out why I've been so sick! My Crohn's disease, which normally only forms blockages, decided to form the tiniest little fistula this time (think like a little tube coming out of my intestines in a place where there should not be any tubes) that was too small to be seen on the imaging we'd done, but was plenty big enough to allow all kinds of gut bacteria and related bugs to escape and take up residence in my abdominal wall, festering into a whole series of infections and eventually a large abscess. Back at the start of March, when I was having daily unexplained fevers that got frighteningly high (all the way up to 104.3 at one point), they found the abscess - which at that point had grown to be about the size of a baseball - but the draining procedure failed and they tried hard to throw strong antibiotics at it for the few bacteria they had been able to identify in hopes of pushing off more drastic measures. Unfortunately, that failed as well, and on March 22nd I was readmitted for surgery. They cut out several inches of diseased colon on either side of the fistula and cleared out the abscess as best as they could, taking a bunch of cultures along the way that helped us identify a few more bacteria and a yeast that were missed in the original drainage attempt. Post-surgery complications, including more fevers (which turned out to be mostly drug fever, a reaction to one of the antibiotics they had me on, though I still get a low fever every couple of days for unknown reasons, most likely related to the fact I haven't finished my antibiotics or antifungal meds yet so there's probably some hold-out bacteria/yeast trying to fight back) and a bit of internal bleeding where they had to sew my colon back together had me in the hospital until April 7th when normally I would have been discharged around March 28th. But now I'm back home and on the road to recovery! There are still challenges ahead but I should be on the downhill part of all of this basically as soon as May hits - so, right as this challenge ends. That should get me past all the doctor follow-ups and hopefully on new meds to stop this from happening again, past my thesis due date (April 29th), past a lot of work nonsense with EOC exams and contract signings, etc. etc. It might be a tough month, especially since I'm starting it behind - I didn't exactly do a whole lot of work while I was in the hospital - but I'm optimistic! A few more weeks of nose to the grindstone and I'll finally be at the point I've spent the last several years working towards. I can do this, even if it sucks sometimes!! Quest One: Movement I'm actually current banned from "working out on purpose", as the surgeon put it, but mobility is medicine and sitting on my butt all day long isn't good for me either. I've lowered my step goal on my watch to 1,000 steps a day just as a way to make sure I'm not spending too much time on the couch/in bed, which I think should be a pretty reasonable goal for just like minimal taking care of myself and my house type movement. This might change as I try it out - I just came up with that last night, so haven't actually figured out if it's a good goal or not - but it's 4:45 and I'm currently at 606 steps despite not doing a heck of a lot and taking a nap earlier, so it might be a good number. Quest Two: Nutrition This is very arguably the single most important quest of this challenge for me. Not only did I lose more weight in the hospital - came home at 125, which is only 7 pounds away from medically underweight, and I can see many of my bones including almost all my ribs - but almost all my doctors have various nutritional recommendations for me to help me heal and regain my strength. I feel like I've been eating a lot, but my husband says I eat less than I think I do, so I'm not only going to record everything I eat on a daily basis so I can make sure it's enough, but also to make sure I can reach the goals my doctors have set for me. Most of these are fairly vague - like, no one has given me exact calorie counts or grams of macros to hit or anything like that - but hopefully having a food dairy will help us quantify some of those things more specifically if needed. Goals for my daily entries: 1) at least 64 ounces of water or other fluids a day (I can count juice and milk towards this, according to the doc) 2) "substantially increase" my protein intake - I'm shooting for at least one source of protein in at least 2 meals a day, preferably more, plus I'm also routinely adding high protein supplements - in my case, Boost (but maybe not quite daily, because they're expensive) 3) start off low-fiber because it's easier on the intestines, but can slowly increase this over the course of the month if my guts respond well 4) make sure I eat at least 3 meals a day or the vague equivalent because it's often easier on my guts to eat multiple small plates rather than a big meal - I'm not tracking calories but I want to be able to say, "yeah, that's a good amount of food for an adult woman to eat in one day" Quest Three: School I mostly mean grad school here, but also the school I work at. I need to finish my thesis and create my final portfolio presentation for my defense. For work I need to do my daily lesson plans of course, catch up on my grading, sign my contract for next year, and ideally start one my curriculum re-organization but let's be honest, that's probably not going to happen in April. Overall large goals: 1) thesis section 7 (2 halves) 2) thesis lit review 3) reflection essay for portfolio 4) website and handout for portfolio 5) I think I might have to do a video or something as well? 6) catch up on class discussions 7) catch up on grading (currently only graded through February 21st in Spanish 2 and February 15th in Spanish 3) 8 ) ideally get a buffer going for lesson plans (currently don't even know what we're doing on Monday) Quest Four: Hobbies But all work and no play makes KCAleece a grumpy, bitchy lady. To help keep my sanity, I want to make sure I'm making at least a minimal amount of time for myself. While I was in the hospital, I desperately was dreaming about getting back to quilting, so I want to get some time to work on my kid's quilt. I also enjoy watching certain YouTube channels (is that really a hobby? Questionable) and I want to keep up with my manicures. Also I have really been missing cooking and baking. So my goal is that I can say I did 2 hobby things every week - for example if I did a manicure and baked cookies, or watched a YouTube video and also worked on my son's quilt. It won't be a daily thing, but I'd like to think I can fit in 2 things every week to feel like I'm still getting "me time" (which I often don't feel like I am). A few specific goals I'd like to hit with this: 1) my son's quilt is done through row 11, so I'd like to finish at least row 12 2) I always make lemon crinkle cookies for May Day, so I want to do that at the end of the challenge 3) I'm still working through my untried nail polishes and want to use at least 2 of them this challenge (manicure or pedicure is fine)
  15. Chris-Tien and the Side Quest Quest When I started with Nerd Fitness (nearly 10 years ago), my major goal was to lose weight. I was at 171lbs. I am still tracking that dragon, but I am making progress and narrowing in on defeating the beast. My problem is that I tend to get distracted by side quests and lose sight of the of the endgame ... in life as well as in Skyrim. But this challenge, I am embracing the side quests as a way to build skills and strength so that when I do finally face the dragon, I will be ready. Long term goals for the YEAR of the Great Dragon Hunt Last year, I reduced from 168 to 156 (and bumped back up in the dumpster fire + train wreck of Fall Semester ....). This year, I want to get back into the "normal" weight category for my height, age, and gender: 150 (or less). And I want to do a pull up again, damnit. Those are the two measurable things that encapsulate a whole lot of life style changes along the way. I have set milestones for each month so that I know where I am along the journey. February's goals are: Back squat 55 - DONE Pushups 1 Lat pulldown 75 Deadlift 77.2 500 m row < 180 - DONE 5K 45 pace: 14.5 That gives me a couple of weeks to work on the rest of these while I pursue the side quests that make games and life .... interesting. So, heading out the door, these are my challenge goals ..... 1) Eat 84+ grams of protein per day (tracking in MyFitnessPal) 2) Strength train (CrossFit or gym or KBs at home) 2+ x per week 3) Positive affirmations daily 4) < 31.9% BF% 5) Draw a Side Quest card daily and complete all of those drawn by the end of the challenge In point, the first challenge I have is to toss out the invaders that have taken over the local fortress (i.e. get over this cold ... again).
  16. This last challenge I started building some good habits I want to carry through. I increased my yoga class load, also sneakily increased my social life behind the scenes, and set myself on a good nutrition trajectory. Nutrition Last challenge, I added my green smoothies back in for breakfast and ate with a focus on hitting 80g/day in protein. This was difficult some weeks and definitely took planning. I felt a little veg-lite some days and relied too heavily on convenience junk foods just to hit that number some days. I’m going to continue to refine this one. I planned poorly this zero week and am riding the struggle bus to even want to hit that goal number as a consequence. Next week, I need to plan better. I’m still weighing whether or not i want to continue on with spreadsheets or tracking; we shall see what shakes out here. Movement Last challenge, I added an unexpected 5th class to the rotation and I want to keep that going. Schedule: Monday stretch & flow, Tuesday mobility, Wednesday detox yoga, Friday slow flow, Saturday slow & strong. All with 20-minute walks to and from. Other Continue on with crochet projects; finish the insides of all completed bags Get supplies to finish the couple bags I ran out of yarn for Get supplies for a cover-up project Start fabric bag project Complete copywriting project(s) as they come and I feel good about doing Try to keep my new weekly post-yoga coffee out going Meet up with a friend who is in town Finally get around to cleaning and reorganizing at least my closet so I can find all my yoga leggings - cull the things that no longer fit me - or that do not have a place to land (for the most part) Upcoming travel may or may not but into this challenge cycle; we are also theoretically hosting family for a few days possibly at the end of this cycle as well. We shall see what happens there: they’d be coming from a country currently on the red list (meaning 2-day hotel quarantine), so may just skip this leg of the trip.
  17. Been a long time between challenges.... Goals: 1. 6 weeks of weight loss using Fast 800... loosely at first becoming stricter. 2. No/low carb to acheive mild keto for as long as possible. Test using keto stix. 3. Walk...a lot. 30km a week ideally, if i can wind it up then 10k steps a day. My knee is still dodgy (getting old) so not sure how this'll go. 4. Covid is gripping Australia right now and spreading like wildfire. Try not to get it. Channel my introvert superpowers! Super busy at work, which is good and bad... End of last year i dropped 14kg. I've put 4 back on, want to lose another 4 6-8 or so this challenge. Starting=93.7kg
  18. I’ve said it before, and I’m saying it again: something has got to change. That’s up to no one but me. As 2021 draws to a close, I find my body in a state that my back is starting to act up again in a big way (which happens when I hit a certain body fat percentage), 80% of my closet doesn’t fit, and I feel suuuuuuper heavy and unresponsive in my yoga classes. This is no bueno. The good news is, I 100% know how to fix it. Like, that exactly - minus probably the pasta, in my case. Nutrition Thinking back to all the nutrition protocols over the years that have worked best for my body, paleo was the clear winner. I think what worked for me there was the protein consideration (making sure I at least hit that one metric before all else), the consistent working out (20-30 mins/ day 5-7x a week), the focus on getting enough greens, focus away from carbs, focus away from processed foods, and the lower amounts of alcohol (zero, actually). I haven’t had the desire to be but so strict with myself over the past couple years, so I’m going for a hybrid here. Protocol Guidelines 80g/day protein When in doubt, more veggies Bread only when it’s going to be actually worth it - not just because it’s in front of me (killer fresh naan? Yes. Crappy sandwich because I’m bored, no). Rice at a restaurant: after the main and a few sips of water. Alcohol limited to 2-3 drinks per weekend If all goes to plan, this should naturally put my calorie consumption back down to where my body seems to like it (around 1200 calories), and if I’m focusing on protein first, carbs and fat should sort themselves out. If not, we will reassess. I may reassess to add green smoothies back into my life if I can hit my protein goals otherwise, but will be starting out at least with 20g-ish breakfasts. I’ll look for a good protein powder, too, because I do miss my green veg hit in the mornings. I’ve also got a new toy - an air fryer - and will be experimenting with that. I’ll be taking y’all along for the ride with pics and menus. Movement I’m still loving my 4x a week yoga classes with walks to and from, and will continue on with that. I’ll also be adding in simple kettlebell workouts on Thursdays at first but a day or two aside from that as the weeks go on. Edited to add: My schedule just had a little shake-up, and it looks like I’ll be able to block in a first(?) second(?) kettlebell session on Tuesdays on weeks I don’t meet up with my girlfriend in person. Other Crochet projects Crafter Box project Closet clean-out Kitchen reorganization Protein _____ Breakfast Lunch Dinner - Movement Yoga Kettlebell - Other Crafting Organization Closet Clean
  19. In 61 days time I'll be running in a 5k event for a Children's Cancer charity. It's booked and paid for, I'm running it with a friend who has also paid and is locked in. Right now I can't run very far, maybe 500m to 1k so I'm going to be following a couch to 5k program. It's supposed to be 12 weeks, I'll do it in 9 as I'm too close to the date. I'm the heaviest I've ever been at 104.7kg. That is way beyond anything I've ever weighed in at before, my diet is totally out of control and at times I'm unhappy. It's getting harder to do simple stuff like put shoes on. I really need to make a change and get back to an active life. Goals: - Record here every day, even if it's to say nothing happened. - Track calories - Run 3 times a week to the Couch to 5K program I would like to be eating sensibly and doing some walking as well, however experience being at this kind of low tells me to keep my goals simple and achievable while I build some momentum. Here we go!
  20. Hey there! It's been a while. I honestly don't even know what's going on in here, it's like I'm brand new. If you've been here for a while or are active on Facebook, you might know me. If not, hi. I'm Devyn. I decided I needed some accountability for my fitness goals over the next few months, especially since I'm getting ready for Camp Nerd Fitness! I injured my back over a year ago and have been dealing with chronic pain ever since. I let my fitness slide due to disability and I let my nutrition slide in the process. This next few months are going to be focusing on getting back on track, respawning, and hopefully feeing a bit more mobile. Here are my goals: Goal 1: At least one Peloton workout a day. Even if it's a 5 minute class, do something. This is to get into the habit of moving even if I don't feel like it. Goal 2: Track my food on My Fitness Pal I'll start with about 80% "whole foods" at 1700 cals and work my way down in cals if I need to (or up if it calls for that) Goal 3: Walk 10k steps per day By walking my dogs, opting for stairs and parking further. I'm going to try to look for a good treadmill for the not so great days. Maybe I can ask for one for my birthday. I'm here for accountability and getting to know others. If you're active on Peloton, let me know so we can be friends. If you're active on My Fitness Pal, same! If you're active on Garmin Connect, I am tracking my steps there and would love to see you. Happy New Year! Allons-y!
  21. [snoopy dance] 2021 is in its home stretch - another year almost done and dusted. And wow, does it seem like time means nothing. Last year, totally understandable - that feeling has 💯 carried over to this year, and I even left the apartment! It’s finally Winter where I live (I could have used a sweatshirt the evening I was out after dark!) and local events are ramping up. We’ve got the Arab Cup (a trial run for next year’s FIFA extravaganza) shutting down whole chunks of the heart of the city for almost a month, a food festival & nightly laser light show in that same area, a balloon festival at the beginning of December, outdoor dining popping open all over the place with holiday season specials to boot, some weirdo music fest with Gulf people I’ve never heard of, hopefully some Christmas or Farmers market type happenings, a fashion retrospective, and then National Day mid next month to cap this part of Outdoor Season festivities off. My plan is to drag DH to one thing each week - a festival, a shopping destination, food, or a park - something that’s not our Sunday Mall Walk or Saturday & Friday delivery routine. Meanwhile, he’s trying to remember he agreed to be forced out of the house. For the most part. He’s put a moritorium on the Dhow Festival. Our friends are also ready to go out and have fun - so we’ll be planning more excursions with them. That takes care of the ‘other’ section - appreciating where we live, experiencing new things and connecting with friends. I’ve also got my creative list: Design, print & send holiday cards Finish this first run of bags Build a website for that project + an Etsy page Nutrition Front I’m still toying with a run of Paleo In The New Year - something has to change, and my fucks are not getting themselves in a row. Rules work for my brain; which I totally know but was trying a lassiez Faire approach - which got me a size and a half out of my entire closet of clothes; even my replacement items. Until then, I need to keep my goals in sight and remember that I do not have to be a member of the clean plate club. It’s not an actual thing; the food’s been cooked - it’s already wasted. It’s not going to mythical African children. I also need to set myself up for success by creating meal plans so I can hit this weights’ macros. I’m facing (again) struggling with protein - as it stands I’ll need 120g/day … aaaaaaand I’ve got a months-long meat-at-home aversion to deal with. Attachment Meal plan it is! Movement Front (awwww … poor Kino) In our holiday shopping jaunt this weekend, we picked up an 8kg kettelbell. I need to make myself some attractive easy workout placards and start incorporating those into my life. It’s also cool enough to up my walking on yoga days. And I need to get back to my solid 4x a week yoga class schedule - fingers crossed that whoever they get to replace my Tuesday Functional instructor has something good in a convenient time. That, or I may be able to switch to Saturday am when DH has his guitar thing - that’s before we would go out and do anything anyways. … And that’s it. Super simple as per the usual these past couple years, and hopefully the base building blocks for an even more successful 2022.
  22. Woohoo! It's almost here - 2022!! The magical year of so many promises. Looking for a new house, graduating from graduate school, starting IVF (the doctor is giving us just under an 80% chance of being pregnant by the end of 2022 based on our current test numbers, which we feel really good about, so let's pray that he's right and our time has finally come!!). It could be a doozy but it should, hopefully, be the year where Things Are Finally Starting To Look Up. Especially given my now-only-newish job going so well thus far, it's hard not to be at least a little optimistic even if I'm so far in the weeds right now that it's not something I spend much time or energy expressing. Plus I always love New Year's Eve/Day anyway - it's such a sense of the blank page for me. Literally anything could happen! The possibilities are open and endless! You never know what might be in store for you down the road and I find it very exciting 😄 With that said, I am still in the weeds until December 17th, which is the final day of the semester for both my workplace and my grad class. But while I did a terrible job of posting last challenge, I honestly surprised myself a little bit at how well I could follow my super simplistic challenge, so I'm going to keep the same basic idea but turn it up just one single notch for this short follow-up: Quest 1: Eating Eating not-box food didn't do as much for my weight as I was hoping it would, though it certainly didn't hurt either. The other big change my doctor suggested was eating more chicken, cheese, and potatoes, but I honestly already eat a good amount of chicken and cheese, so I'm choosing to focus in on potatoes. This should be especially easy because I have probably 8-ish pounds of potatoes in my pantry right now (my husband misunderstood how many I wanted for the Thanksgiving mashed potatoes and bought just over twice as many as I expected), along with leftover mashed potatoes anyway because the recipe claimed it made 8 servings, which I thought would be great for 6 adults and 2 little kids, but holy bajesus everyone had a good sized serving and there's more than half the mash left... So my goal is going to be to eat potatoes at least once a week every week between now and New Year's (5 weeks). New recipes are welcome but not required. Also potatoes don't have to be the centerpiece of the meal but they do have to be reasonably present - like roasted root veggies with a burger would count since our "roasted roots" is usually a little more than half potato anyway. Also, as a side note, this morning's weight was up to 132! Not enough for me to celebrate yet, considering that's still well within my range of normal fluctuations, but I'm mildly hopeful. Quest 2: Exercise This will actually probably be the hardest one for me. A combo of anemia (which leads to low energy), a crazy schedule, and sheer inertia makes this daunting as heck, and honestly I was scraping the bottom of the barrel last challenge for passes here. With that in mind, I'm going to keep my original goal of "literally anything even slightly extra physical once a week" and add in at least one yoga session - should be easy if I tell my husband to bother me into doing at least one with him at some point! - and at least one weights session. By which I mean "probably just one or two sets of something, probably tricep rows (I think is what they're called?)". I'm not a weightlifter by any means but I do want to increase my archery draw weight and running likely needs to wait a bit longer anyway (needing to gain weight + arthritic knee that doesn't like cold = not a great idea right now unless something changes), plus that wouldn't take terribly long or a ton of energy. So I think those are both doable, even if I shove them in after the 17th. But you'd best believe I'm letting myself double dip and count the yoga and weightlifting as my "thing" that week if I need to! Quest 3: Life Same base idea as quest 2, I'm just repeating last challenge and barely bumping it up a tiny notch: Literally anything at all once a week (probably going for being social on here - I'm unofficially going to try to start responding more to folks on here, which is a struggle for me - working on my son's quilt, baking Christmas cookies, or watching amusing YouTube videos) plus getting to at least row #7 of my son's quilt. I'm about halfway through row #4 so this shouldn't be too difficult I think and my kid is super impatient/excited for it so I want to make sure I'm at least making reasonable progress on it to show him. Again, I'm totally allowed to double dip here - I get to count quilt work time as my "thing" that week when needed. Trying to "start" today to keep what tiny bit of momentum I have going, though I wouldn't expect any kind of useful update tomorrow (toddler ninja class + grad school deadline tonight = probably just going to work and go to bed). Wish me luck!!
  23. This challenge, I’ll be starting off by getting back into whatever passes for my usual swing - again - and will take us through the only big holiday I’m doing this year - Thanksgiving. Nutrition While traveling: Do what I can to not kill myself - Georgia is known for its wine & cheesy bread; wine is fine - cheesy bread: not so much. I know I’ll have to have it at least once, knowing that I’m going to have a bad time. Let’s not roll that into reckless abandon, yo. While home: Veggies & protein first - carbs to fill in the gaps. Movement While traveling: Should have that covered on this trip While home: Yoga 4x a week; contemplate picking up a 10kg kettlebell; keep thinking about barre - after re-establishing my yoga schedule Others While traveling: Do the things and have fun with DH While home: Dog enrichment, hit the fabric store for supplies, finish crochet projects, finish corset, jump on other bag project(s) Pretty simple stuff overall - I’m coming off of a 3-week trip while writing this and have another 6-day trip right at the start of challenge. I feel a bit bloated & chubby - and my liver is a bit tired. Will address all that when challenge starts in earnest. Until then: And (try to avoid):
  24. I'm back for the rest of this challenge! Hope everyone has been doing well. I didn't really have much to say over the course of the almost a year I've been away from here (reason why I took a break) but these days I find myself with a problem, so I thought I'd better post here before I go crazy in confusion. If anyone can help it's you guys. See, I've always had a good relationship with food. I did have outside pressure about the amount of food I ate (aka people thought I didn't eat, then acted surprised I did) but it didn't manifest into anything. And I have always eaten quite a lot. But also I have slept a lot. And now I stepped sleeping as much and got to a nice 7-8 hours a night that didn't make me feel like a drummer used my head as a practice space on the daily. Due to the heat I've also gotten in the habit of drinking about 10 glasses of water a day from my usual 4. All great stuff. But, my appetite has gotten bigger. Like, a lot bigger. Like, I had three fried eggs with cottage cheese, and was hungry half an hour later - had to eat one and a half gyros in order for my stomach to stop freaking out. Five meals a day, all pretty large, all about three hours apart. I'm hungry all the time, the stomach hurting kind of hunger. I have a few go to meals and snacks but they have begun to take a tool on me (I can't eat another peace of bread with peanut butter or I'm going to scream). This naturally leads to frustration and anger and stress which of course make the situation worse. And I have no ideas left. I am also on a pretty tight budget. So this month I'm gonna try and see what to do. If anyone has any tips, or can just reassure me a bit, I'd appreciate it. Current plan is to introduce a lot more meat in my diet - I'm not a vegetarian, but I eat more vegetarian meals than meals with meat in a week. I don't think 'increase the physical amount of food in one meal' will work because I don't want to make myself sick but I'm gonna try and see if I can get into the habit of refilling my plate (a full plate used to fill me, now not so much). I also know I've been eating a lot more simple carbs just due to the fact I can't think of what to cook and the veggies with tomato puree and mushrooms get annoying. So I'm going to switch out pasta with frittatas for a while as a 'we have nothing in the house' meal. Updates will happen when I figure stuff out. An addendum - I haven't had any extra physical activity - actually exercising less these days due to heat, knee inflammation that just passed and just general reshuffling of priorities. And my weight hasn't changed. I also don't have any other symptoms, not fatigue, nothing, so I'm pretty confident it's not a medical thing. The less sleep = bigger appetite has happened before, hence why I connect the two. So let's see if I can stop being hungry.
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