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Found 19 results

  1. I was struggling to think of a theme for this challenge - in NF of yesteryear, I loved doing fun, fannish challenges, usually with complex spreadsheets and real-life roleplaying. Last challenge, I picked a theme that felt somewhat interesting, but it didn't really reflect my goals and I didn't feel like I engaged with it aside from the goal post. As I put my goals together this week, hemmed and hawed over theme options, thought about roadblocks from last challenge, I realized... maybe I don't need a "theme." Maybe this month is just about simplifying and streamlining. So that's where we are. This challenge I'm using Habitica to track my info, and a spreadsheet to collect all that data and analyze it. Each goal has the Habitica tracker under the spoiler cut. And yeah, this feels like a lot of set up, but it actually should make it easier to track in the long run! Exercise The plan is to build on the awesome C25k success I had last challenge and add in even more exercise fun. I'm on Week 5 of C25k currently, and planning to stretch that week out a little since it's a steep change from previous weeks. Ideally I'll be finishing up the program right as this challenge ends. On the strength building side, I'm going to restart the ol' NF Bodyweight Workout, twice a week (thanks for the idea, @MezzotheLefty!) C25k 3x a week = 15 total NF Bodyweight Workout 2x a week = 10 total Eat Paleo 4 Days a Week Okay, paleo-ish. I'll probably keep putting half and half in my coffee and using ketchup. So maybe this is more "low-carb" than paleo. But the idea is to eat more or less grain- and sugar- free, to fill my plate with vegetables, and to break out of the carbo-loaded diet I've been eating for the last 3 years. Hopefully some weight loss will come along for the ride. Notice it's only 4 days a week though, because, baby steps here. Even 4 days a week is better than I'm doing now. Paleo 4x a Week = 20 total Healthy Food Habits IF 16/8 8 glasses of water a day No binge snacking No sugar before 4pm There's a lot going on here, but this is all stuff I've done before and been successful at, so the idea here is just to keep building these habits and keep up a streak of healthy days. There's nothing too challenge or restrictive, just reminders to not go nuts on the snacking or the sugar and to prioritize drinking water. Everyday = 35 total Minimize | Organize | Optimize This is part of my on-going effort to declutter and beautify our house. I have a checklist in my Bullet Journal that's pretty granular - each space should take less than 2 hours. This includes: thoughtful decluttering, donating/selling anything we don't use, making sure this is the right "home" for everything that does stay, clearing space so that new things can come in or be relocated here, zhuzh-ing up the look to make it more beautiful or functional. The plan is to do 2 spaces a week. 2 spaces a week = 10 total Spreadsheet Of Tracking
  2. This challenge was rudely interrupted by a pandemic last year. However, now that we're settling into our post-apocalyptic plaguescape for the long haul, it is yet again time. This challenge, I will endeavour to become the Disc's second greatest lover. "My name's Casanunda," he said. "I'm reputed to be the world's greatest lover. What do you think?" Nanny Ogg looked him up and down or, at least, down and further down. "You're a dwarf," she said. "Size isn't important." This challenge, I'm working my way up the rankings of the world's lovers by leveling up my international playdwarf lifestyle. (Or, as a previous challenge put it, do things with elegance. Strangely, despite years of aikido and years of urban myths about people being told to do things elegantly, I had to re-derive the principle in another way before I realized this was not about aesthetics but about managing to combine mindfulness with emptying the mind.) Some of these may seem like odd choices for a fitness/life level-up (like increasing alcohol consumption, and, I dunno, taking life advice from the worst possible people), but there are three factors at play here: first, this challenge needs to be fun, cuz this us what we do instead of vacations in plague years; second, it's addressing recovery from a certain amount (which is to say, lots) of cutting corners on self-care in the broader day to day living sense and getting by on "acceptable"; and three, it's addressing the (narrative) causality between good habits and seemingly unrelated projects and lifestyle choices. Or, as Vetinari would have it, all the little wheels must spin so the machine can turn. And this is a timely challenge. I've really been struggling with self-care lately. Part I: Casanunda Training There are two first steps to becoming the world's greatest lover: First, yoga warmups with lots of hip openers, for obvious reasons, and, second, get into bed as often as possible. (For sleep, of course. I don't know what you're thinking.) If I'm going to be a soldier of fortune, I need to work on mental stillness and physical prowess. Walking and strength training, to start with, and some meditation. Tasks to be checked off: rewatch Casanova and take notes. Part II: Be a Better Lover Than Lord Rust "It was a Guild of Assassins, after all. Black was what you wore. The night was black and so were you. And black had such style, and an Assassin without style, everyone agreed, was just a highly paid arrogant thug." While Assassin-School-trained, Lord Ronald Rust did not particularly benefit from the lessons on style. So I think I can outdo him here on the things that make an Assassin an Assassin. The projects I will do here include repairing and replacing bits of my wardrobe with a focus on rotating in my higher quality clothes, leveling up my daily grooming from ultra-practical to something attempting a little actual style, and more aperitifs-and-tapas. This will also involve getting back in the habit of making actual things with recipes and planning and cultural connotations, rather than just going with the fastest and most basic form of slapping nutrition onto the table, and managing my pantry better. Also, getting back to my macros and IF schedule. Part III: Be a Better Lover Than Rufus Drumknott "I believe he collects different types of stationery," said Vetinari. "I have sometimes speculated that he might change his life for the better should he meet a young lady willing to dress up as a manila envelope." All this lifestyle-leveling-up requires a certain amount of organization and schedule-wrangling. Being the world's second greatest is demanding. And for me, leveling up the bachelor pad is going to center on organizing: not just finding the right place for everything, but finding the right use for everything, and the most efficient way to organize it all. Where the Lord Rust half of this focuses on making everything I own beautiful, the Drumknott portion involves making it all useful, and also includes recycling things I don't use into things I do. Things will fit into the storage I already have, be more organized, and work better. Also, the habits I use to clean and organise it will be streamlined.
  3. For my return to the Challenges, I'm going to go with a Lord of the Rings theme, since I'm currently doing a Walk to Mordor challenge too. So, attempting to follow Frodo out of the Shire, here's what I'm aiming for: Declutter the Hobbit Hole Like Bilbo getting ready for his 111th birthday party and subsequent departure from the Shire, I need to get rid of some stuff. I already have some bags ready to go, but I'm not sure what to do with them, so for this part of the challenge my three main objectives are: Figure out what to do with old stuffed animals that are still in good shape Weed out my wardrobe and pitch/donate the stuff I don't wear anymore Organize my closet Farmer Maggot's Mushrooms I've been doing a very good job (if I do say so myself) of eating local throughout the summer. In my climate, we're getting to the time of year when that becomes a bit trickier, but to try to keep the momentum going, during this challenge I want to visit: A new farm stand nearby that has fruits and veggies The local pumpkin patch The butcher shop next to my work A nearby apple orchard I always say I'm going to check out and never have Walk to Mordor As previously stated, I'm working on my own Walk to Mordor Challenge (just left Bag End on September 1). I hope to make Bree by the end of this challenge (135 miles total, I already have 26.81 miles in). Strength Training For strength training, I'll be doing the Lord of the Rings workouts. Instead of doing each book as a super set though, I'll be treating them as separate workouts. Thursday, Saturday, Monday is currently my best schedule for working out. And there you have it! By the end of this challenge, if all goes according to plan, I should be out of the Shire and ready to take on the rest of Middle Earth.
  4. I was trying to find a good theme. But I think I'll take the easy route for now, and go with my name sake. And some Harry Potter. I wrote some venting stuff. It wasn't very good. So let's cut to my big 2018 goals: Blackbelt Prep Iaido Prep Get down to 15% body fat I need to build back up a whole lot of habits that have fallen to the wayside the last couple weeks/months. I also haven't done much physical activity in December, with the official start of the 'new' job and the travel prep and traveling. So slow and steady is how this is going to go, until I build back up to where I'm comfortable. That said, I DO need to keep in mind the whole "schedule free time" thing. I don't want to end up exhausted and stressed by all the 'fun' stuff I'm supposed to be doing. And so, we begin. 1) Return to the Count: Count all the calories, 2400 calories per day (taking into account physical activity) I do really well calorie counting. It honestly is the best way for me to both lose weight, and maintain weight. So I'm going to log all the food in MFP, like the olden days. Unlike the olden days, I'm going to be actually taking into account my physical activities. Honestly, it won't be much, because I stopped lifting months ago to give myself some more sleep time. Maybe the lifting will make a come back, maybe it won't, but either way no lifting will likely happen in January for me. Also, some additional stuffs: Nothing but fruit and nuts from the work snack stashes will be allowed. Also the lifesaver mints. Which definitely have calories. Might actually empower the receptionist to knock my hand away from the candy dish.... But I should be able to get some decent calorie cutting by not eating all the things at work. 2) Aikido Archive - Document 5 techniques a week in name, one a week in video format I have seriously been slacking on this project since I decided to do it. By which I mean I wrote up the base document and haven't filled in a damn thing. So I need to start working on that. I should be able to get through the 5th to 2nd kyu exams pretty easily, and I can actually put our testing video into the document at this point, at least until I get the techniques individually recorded. 3) Class Time - 5 Hours of aikido a week Like, seriously. How is this not expected at this point. I'm aiming right now for QUALITY hours on the mat, more than quantity. I plan on testing the end of 2018 or the beginning for 2019, and I will have more than enough hours by then. I don't need more hours, I need more brains on the mat. I need to start playing again a bit more, I need to embrace the fact that I suck, and I need to find ways around it. Eventually I also want to start attending classes at Harvard Aikikai (at least once in a while) and New England Aikikai. Both because the different instruction will help, and also it'll be good for helping mend the relationships between the dojo's current generation. Even if the older generation can't play nicely due to the history behind everything. 4) Find an easy, short mobility routine for ankles. Perform in the morning. I've come to the conclusion that my ankles are my biggest limiting factor in aikido these days. My knees bend easily enough, but my ankle lock out a bit sooner than I would like, which makes lowering my center while maintaining my posture a bit more tricky. This likely also contributes to my hatred of squats. In any case, I'd like to get my mornings started with some mobility work, so maybe things will get a bit better on that front. 5) Extra Credit Adulting: Tidy up the Pantry Purge old/unworn clothing Put the clothing away Fix the Oven and/or call the landlord to replace over Find two new recipes to try Host a house Game night That should cover it for the first couple of weeks. I need to get my head back in the game. At least this time I have stable employment. What an odd feeling that is. Hopefully it helps give me an anchor for the coming year.
  5. Hello, nerds! I'm back. Was it more than a week since last challenge? Has the new challenge not even started? Who cares! I am IN IT. Let's cut to it, because time is money... or time... it's precious valuable life existence being wasted as I type meaningless banter, Morty! MEANINGLESS BANTER! That's who I have become. I am a productivity machine and Lady-Rick ala Rick and Morty. No, not really, I have been working on (slash chaneling) a Rick Sanchez puppet for Dragon Con (nerdy geek-fest coming up Labor Day weekend), and that is primary goal number one: GET IT DONE. Well, done is a bit strong of a word, but this guy involves facial mechs, just so I know that I can do it, since one of my dream life goals is building and working props and puppets in TV and film (technically I am already doing that on the side, but I mean full time, forever and one hundred years film and TV art department!) So goal one is just working on puppets, not even Rick constantly, just anything, I attended the National Puppetry Conference in June and it rocked my socks (I made a movie, some of you saw it! I can post a link later when I need a pick-me-up!) and reminded me what I can get done when I focus. 1) BUILD. CREATE. ART. Okay, now more health oriented goals, of which I have two. 2) DRINK UP. As is... I am trying Soylent. Yup, figured I'd toss some dollars to the genius nerds who made drinkable food with a clever name. But really, I have become unexpectedly fascinated with caloric intake numbers, and time management. (This is where we get into TIME TRAVEL, which is what we are all doing... only in a very linear un-exciting way.) We only get so much of it (time), so I am stream-lining some of it where I can: like breakfast! or lunch, which I am at work so... drink up. This stuff is portioned out pretty much exactly what I need, and I am using it for breakfast and lunch, but eating real food for dinner, I'm a vegetarian so lately I've been making peanut/sesame kale and whatnot and it's amazing and that's that. I also signed up for my friend's Blue Apron trial, so I'm curious about those... really this week there's a Vietnamese rice stick thing and I am fascinated by those, so time to learn how to make them. Then drop the trial methinks, because money is a thing, and I am a clever chef. Oh, the point of this goal is to keep track of caloric intake, but also to see how well a Soylent powered me works in the harsh environment of the real world. 3) RUN, MORTY! RUN Oh, am I still doing that? Like I said, I've been drinking energy cut with coffee, and I mocked up an eye mech last night that I get to expound upon once I leave the moneyjob. Also, I am trying to "run" (lots of start and stop 5K training, I am sure, but the point is 30-45 minutes a day of activity). It's hard to do sometimes, to motivate, but I do know that when I do, I feel awesome. And it's been raining on me lately, which somehow feels awesom-er. Hitting that step-goal would be great too, but I'm not going to say it's a necessity this go-round. Okay, health-aside, let's look at more sort of social emotional functional goals 4) GET YOUR HOUSE IN ORDER and TIME IN CHECK Previous lurkers on my challenges may notice a theme. Funny, when you make art, your house seems to become a cluttered disaster area. I am trying to cull that, I've Konmari'ed pretty hard, but did not make the final adjustments of fixing my house to serve my needs. Hoping to make some strides there with this goal of batcave improvement. Studio-wise I need to build a work bench that's not my fold out cardtable, then affix my scroll saw, bandsaw, vice-I-am-buying-today, and any other hefty tools that are super dangerous on a card table (I've just been using them on the floor which isn't great, but safer for sure. Also want to cull my kitchen, I never quite did that when I Konmari'ed, so I need to. I make pretty darn awesome food, and I am starting to learn to simplify and organize my cabinets... so... I should. Time in check is more divvying up the hours alotted to me after work and on my days off, and making them productive, and relaxing, I know I need to rest too. This is me trying to make a chart, which I've not made yet (but it's July 5, and the challenge starts July 9, so I've got time) and stick to it. It will include time for art/building, running, house cleaning/ordering, and REST. I'm noticing a need or desire to sort of orient myself into a routine or schedule, that I can break out of as necessary, but also fall back on. We'll see how it goes. So, I've babbled on quite enough, now to get back to drinking energy and working at my money job! Any ideas? Suggestions? Running commentary? Requests? And awaaaaaaaaaay we go!
  6. I'm PinkNinja. I've been a monk since 2013, when Adventurer was a little less literal. I've not done martial arts regularly since, well, 2012. But It seemed like a good fit. When they changed the classes, I started to swap, but to be honest, new people are scary, and at the time, I put a foot in the door, but decided I wasn't up for it. Sorry! I'm sure you guys are GREAT, I just was having a weird moment. I'm a park ranger, and I love my job. I get to share the outdoors with people. I worked on a mountain for 6 years, but this past year, I was in a different position where I moved to a different park every 6-9 weeks. Now, I'm more permanent at a lake park. There's quite a bit of office work, but I get to lead hikes & kayak tours, too. Pretty much all of my challenges have been centered around losing weight and going on adventures.I love to backpack, and have even gotten to teach college courses on backpacking (paid to hike in not one, but TWO different jobs, how do I get so lucky?!) I camp, hike, kayak, I used to work in the park that was our state's highpoint, so I caught the highpointer bug and am trying for at least 40 of them. I've only got 3 under my belt, but I'm planning #4 soon, like probably next challenge. No, I haven't thru-hiked any of the cool trails. I have to work too much for that. I'm planning a thru-hike on the Buffalo River trail. It's shorter, and I'm even considering a hike upstream and a float downstream, but we'll see. Tell me about yourselves, please! I've been stalking your challenges, and it sounds fun. Are you up for taking in a nomadic monk? Challenge 1 of 2017 Health 1. Eat Better: Plan, plan, plan! I need to get back on track with planning my food for the week. I'm aiming for level 4 of the NF diet, so I'll keep that in mind. But I know if I planned ahead and went to a real store for groceries, it would help my nutrition and my budget, instead of the store here with their apocalyptic produce section and frightening supply of meat (seriously, I can't find a real lemon in this town, but I can get every part of the pig from the pickled lip to the salted foot) Each week, have my level 4 meals planned by Wednesday for the next week= 5 pts per week (20 total) 2. Sleep Better Go to bed before 10:35. I'm going to set reminders to shower and get ready for bed, and then another reminder to go to bed. I'll use my UP and my phone. I work on waking up earlier later. Hopefully just getting to bed at a decent hour will naturally help with that. Be in bed every night by 10:35= 1 pt (28) Wealth (or lack of) 1. Stop buying stuff! Seriously. STOP. Not going into my financial past, but I just consolidated a lot of debt off of some credit cards. I was doing well at not using them, then Christmas happened. And now I haven't stopped. I got a K-cup type coffee pot as a gift, so I bought a stand with drawers for it and enough to tea pods to more than fill said stand. Crap like that. I'm already moving into a smaller house and trying to downsize. WHAT is wrong with me?! So I'm uninstalling wish.com, amazon shopping app, and ebay from my phone. I don't have internet at home, so whew, safe on the laptop and Kindle. I will delete all my credit cards from online storage, so no more "Buy it Now- 1-click" If I don't want it badly enough to get up and go get my card, I don't want it enough to spend the money. Don't buy anything that isn't fuel for me or the Escape. Every dollar spent on something that is not fuel = -1pt 2. Get my Side Hustle On I have 3 classes approved at a local university to teach Beginner's Basket Weaving Workshops, one each in Feb, March, and April. I need to figure up my costs, write proposals for at least 3 more classes on either basket weaving, soap making, or something outdoors & fun, I'm thinking a camp cooking one or maybe an alternative fire starting or a combo, or something like that. But I haven't used a bow drill in at least 2 years.. Also, now that I'm not a pseudo homeless park gypsy, I need to get my Etsy store stocked again. If I stick to my Happiness #1 goal, I'll start producing things. But I've got to weave my mom's coasters. Though, since she doesn't know which color she wants, I'll get two sets finished. She can pick one and I can post the other for sale. But she likes fringe. Ugh. Prepare materials & handouts for first class, research & plan 3 classes for next quarter, and find out when proposals for next quarter are due. =10 pts Sanity 1. Get back on track with my 20/20/20. A few challenges ago, I was working on balance and so I started dedicating 20 minutes to cleaning (short term stuff, like dishes), 20 minutes of organizing(long term-like one day finish unpacking), and 20 minutes of creating. That got all thrown off in December because it got a little crazy, holidays, then had to help sister with an emergency move. So I need to get back to finding that balance. The rest of my evening is spent however I see fit, but I have to do AT LEAST 20 minutes of each, except for Tuesdays, when I wear Batman jammies and snuggle with my couch cause it's my Friday. Every day I am home that is not Tuesday, I will stick to the 20/20/20 rule. =1 pt per day (22 ish total) 2. Inventory & Organize Or at least start on it. I still haven't finished moving in and stuff. keeps. happening. Like holidays and company and travel for work, and then I'm ARGH! and I run away and play in the woods (ok, so that last one is all me). I'm going to pick a home inventory app and start filling it up. I'm going to start with my camping gear because that'll make me happy and because I need to reorganize it. I had some of it in long term storage, and then as soon as I started moving, mom needed some to "decorate her classroom". I got it all back (I THINK) But my DOTH bag is all scattered, and I'm feeling an itch to use it soon. Plus, I got a couple of cool new toys for Christmas and I have to give them their home. (Like a really cool collapsible solar lantern, A BOWCASE! & NEW ARROWS!, and a manufactured underquilt! I can retire my butchered wal-mart sleeping bag!) Inventory and organize all of my backpacking & camping gear by Feb. 4th. Make sure it is mostly all added into KnowYourStuff- = 20pts *Adventure Bonus* I have everything I need to kayak in colder weather. It's not top of the line, but it's adequate. I have put off using it for at least a couple of years. That's going to stop. I WANT to do it, I just talk myself out of it. I'll go kayaking between now and Feb. 2nd (to clarify, on flat water)
  7. My goals last round went well, so this round is going to be similar. I have no theme... Goal #1: Train for and execute the June triathlon Bf and I are doing a 3mi canoe, 3mi run, 8mi bike (half distance compared to previous years) 6/5. We need to practice canoeing (the first year we had a disagreement in the canoe), plus normal training. Goal #2: 5 servings veggies/day Still trying to find a balance. Focusing on incorporating more vegetables seems to help squeeze out carbs. Goal #3: Sleeping/Waking routine Having no kids, and really not that many commitments, I can and should be prioritizing sleep more. 8 hours (tracked by Fitbit), with 5 minute morning meditation. Bonus Goals: (aka being a grownup) Plant/tend the garden Read the Kondo book (I feel a purge coming on and want to use the book as impetus) Clean the kitchen: oven, refrigerator, microwave Buy the chest freezer and bulk meat order Buy the kitchen island and reorganize Keep May groceries under $400 (except meat purchase) Cook 4 new recipes (1 each out of the cookbooks I have checked out) I'm counting the freezer, meat, and island as my 'rewards' for completing last challenge's goals.
  8. So, I'm going to keep this simple, for the time being. I quit my job. It was terrible and toxic for me, and since quitting, even with nothing lined up, I've had endless amounts of people comment oh how much happier I am. Clearly this was the correct life choice. So, since I don't have a job right now, I need to settle into a routine where I will have one soon. This means I need to set up a system, and more importantly, a place to do the hunt that won't kill my drive. Mainly because the last two times I did a job hunt I never had a desk or space to hunker down. I need to change that this time, I think. So, this challenge is less a bunch of discrete challenges, and more a massive list of adulting to help facilitate getting a new job. Also, I am going on vacation from the 6th to the 13th, and if my recruiter has his way I may actually have a job before I go on vacation. With my last day at my job being the 5th, I've had a crazy couple of weeks. So this entire challenge may up and change before it even begins. EDIT - I'm now making two challenges. "Unemployed RP" and "Employed RP" Challenge Lists. The Batcave/life theme still will apply to both, but with slight variances. Unemployed RP Challenge: As it is currently looking more and more likely I'll be employed sooner rather than later.... This isn't getting hidden behind a spoiler. Employed RP Challenge: Adulting Tasks (in order of PRIORITY): Do Taxes Figure out Health Insurance Get car oil changed Get car inspected Clean car out Clean Bedroom Sort and remove clothing that is over a size Large Organize Board game cabinet Use Google Calendar to track my new schedule of work, aikido, and workouts. Figure out optimal schedule. For Workouts: Aim for 4 Aikido Classes, and one Non-aikido workout (lifting or NP or yoga or Ruck). Ideally six aikido classes and two non-aikido workouts (NP and Lifting). Begin inventorying my library. Create Google Sheets logging at least one book a day (Title, author, publication date, genre) Read 3 books before the end of the challenge. So, this looks the more likely challenge at this point. Adult tasks are prioritized based on health and transportation. A nice clean bedroom before my job starts would be nice, as would the sorting out of clothing that's too large for me now. Board games need to get organized, as right now they are just tossed in a messy pile, so that's a bonus. A lot of the potential new jobs are in the Cambridge area, which means either crazy traffic or using the T to get to work, both of which are going to take time getting used to. Plus side is working in that area is that even at rush hour (4-6PM), it seems to have only taken me about 10 minutes to get to the dojo. WIN! So I should be able to squeeze my usual class schedule in, but who knows. I just know Tuesday is required for me. My reading has been lighter as of late, and I'm on an upswing overall. Which means I've been reading and adding books to my library pretty regularly, in both physical and ebook formats. I don't have too many books, but I probably have at least 200 or so hunkered down in my bedroom. I've never inventoried them, and I know I have books I haven't read. One of those eternal "Been meaning to get to that" piles. So I figure this helps me ID those books, as well as just figure out what I want to read next. And yea, just wanted to add more reading to my list because I could. I have my current book I'm reading (Casino Royale!), and then I'll probably read "The Long Utopia," and after that I'm not sure. Depends on my mood, I think. We shall see. But for now, this sounds like a plan.
  9. Happy 2016 Everyone! It's a new year! A fresh start! And I am so very, very happy to be getting back into a new Nerd Fitness challenge. I'm Yvonne, or athousandwords, and this is my sixth challenge on NF. I've been an Adventurer for all previous challenges, but with the reorg of guilds and some soul-searching about what I want my fit-and-healthy life to look like, I've decided to make the move to Rangers. I'm happy to see some familiar faces over here, so looks like this will be a great challenge to reconnect with some old friends and make lots of new ones. 2015 was a strong year for me. I started off with a Whole30 in January, rejoined NF in June, and spent the majority of the year following a paleo diet and an exercise routine focused on strength training, cycling, and yoga. In November, I eased off a bit from my routine because of several (awesome) vacations and family gatherings, and let myself slip out of a lot of the good habits I developed. So this first challenge of the year will be about kickstarting good habits and health! Goal 1: Whole30 (CON 2, CHA 1) Starting the year with a Whole30 will help me hit the reset button on my poor eating decisions and curb that Sugar Dragon that's been roaring since Thanksgiving. Official Rules and Recommendations are posted here, but the gist is strict paleo: no grains, no sugar, no alcohol, no legumes, no dairy. I've done it before and I know I can do it again! Tracking: Posting what I eat daily (or on a regular basis) Grading: Pass/Fail Goal 2: Establish a weekday morning routine (DEX 1, CON 1, CHA 1) I think I'm secretly a morning person disguised in a very sleepy person's pajamas. I love the way I feel when I wake up early and get stuff done, even if the snooze button thinks otherwise. My goal is to wake up earlier on work days and get a jump start on the day with these five things: Floss Stretch Clean Cat Litter Eat Breakfast Take Prenatal VitaminTracking: Using HabitBull to mark each item complete. Half 'day' counted if something is completed but not done in the morning. Grading: Goal 3: Just Work Out (STR 1, STA 2) As much as I hate to admit it, working out is always the first thing that slips for me, and the hardest thing to get back into. I debated not having a workout challenge this month, but I want to start the year right and that means developing a habit of fitness, even if it sucks sometimes. This month, I will complete Strength Training 2x per week and Cardio 2x per week. They can be on separate days or the same day, and should be at least 20 minutes of activity. Tracking: Posting what I've done here on NF, and using HabitBull to mark complete Grading: Personal Goal: Weekly Cleaning/Organization Task (CHA 1, WIS 1) This year I'm taking the "52 Weeks To An Organized Home: Weekly Challenges" to help organize and declutter our house. This goal is to complete the first four tasks during the week they take place. Tracking: Updating here each week as completed Grading: Starting Stats: STR 13.5 | DEX 8 | STA 11.5 | CON 19.5 | WIS 15.75 | CHA 12.5 Weight: 161.8 Waist: 32"Belly: 38.5"Hips: 41"R Thigh: 24.75"R Bicep: 12.5"Neck: 13"
  10. Ahhh the good ol' Winter is Coming, Pre-holiday Challenge! No big surprises here, just the usual tweaking things around. Eat good food and sweat. That's where I'm at. Goal One: Workout +2STR +2END +1DEX Kettlebells 2x per week NF yoga 1x per week for: 3 pts per week A : 18pts+ B : 15pts+ C : 12pts+ D : 9pts+ F : <9pts Goal Two: Metrics +2CON +2CHA Calories: 1400 - 1800 per day Carbs: <100g per day Protein: >80g per day All of the above, 6/7 days per week. 1 pt per item per day. A : 105pts B : 95pts+ C : 85pts+ D :75pts+ F : <75pts Goal Three: Crafting! +1WIS +1CHA +1END Near the end of the last challenge, I started learning to make amigurumi, and that is what all the little ones will be getting for Christmas! I also have to finish crocheting a blanket that I started almost a year ago, which is also a present for a little one. If I'm excessively productive though, I'll make her a stuffy too, and save the blanket for her birthday. Complete one project per week: A : 6 B : 5 C : 4 D : 3 F : 2 or less Goal Four: +2WIS +1END Organize my freaking house. Choose your own adventure style: 1. Finish cleaning/organizing craft/cat room (it's ALMOST done, but has been sitting in its unfinished state for weeks now) (15pts) 2. Bedroom (Achieved this a few challenges ago, but it's majorly slipped) (20pts) 2. Purge the basement! Get rid of: - Extra couch (20pts) - Random collection of boxes (10pts) - Leftover sheets of drywall (10pts) 3. Clean and organize laundry room/food storage (20pts) 4. Change all the damn burnt out lightbulbs. (10pts) 5. Put up curtain to separate fridge/bathroom area in basement. (10pts) 6. Deal with all the crap piled in the "dining room" (20pts) 7. Tidy storage area. This got deepcleaned about a year ago, but it's gotten a little unorganized since (10pts) Aiming for about 20 pts per week. I may add to this list as we go. A : 120pts B : 100pts C : 80pts D : 60pts F :40pts or less
  11. Two goals. The first is to account for every day with housework, food, and play. The second is to check my master list of things I should be doing instead of futzing away on the internet. Master list of things I should be doing: Misc Routines:Know what's for dinnerGroomed and dressed (Earrings today?)Do artWrite down art and writing ideasCheck on the busywork preparationsHousework Laundry put away Tables cleared KitchenPut dishwasher on dirty, run if fullCutting boards cleanKnives cleanLarge pan and lid cleanCounters wipedSink drains clearedPlayOrigami and paper starsCross-stitchColoring pagesWooden blocksPhysical puzzlesBoard game solitaire (Tsuro, Quirkle, or Dominoes)Play preparation, have these things ready and waiting for fussy moments.Cross-stitch projects chosen and aida cloth cut to sizeOrigami paper and star strips already cutColoring book pages photocopiedArt
  12. Bit of an introduction for myself. I'm 30 years old now, 5'6" and 209 pounds, down from 242! I've been married to my husband for nearly 6 years and my beautiful daughter is 3 1/2 years old. My daughter was born at 28 weeks into the pregnancy and because of some complications has a severe form of spastic cerebral palsy. Once we brought her home from the NICU, stress and exhaustion skyrocketed and over 3 years I put on over 50 pounds. Becca would only sleep for 1-3 hours at a time (a consequence of her CP) and I was lucky to get 5-6 hours of sleep in a whole day. I spent the time binge eating at night, trying to eat my exhaustion and living a much more sedentary life then I was used to. A few months ago we finally FINALLY found a doctor that helped us with Becca's sleep and with her high tone, which means closer to normal sleep and she tolerates her stroller! So now I'm working on getting down to 150 pounds and keeping/increasing what strength I have because toting around 26 pounds of 3 1/2 year old is not going to get easier without it! I would also like to be within a healthy weight range before we consider the possibility of a second child, which still scares me, a lot. My first challenge went really well and I feel like I've built the habit of both consistently calorie counting and doing some form of activity six days a week. I have noticed my flexibility has become appalling so I'm switching up my focus a bit this challenge. Goal 1: Yoga 3 times a week. I have a 30 day beginner program picked out that should take me through the entire 6 weeks. Goal 2: Do the Couch to 5k running program 3 times a week. So after a badly sprained wrist I'm changing my focus over to the 5k running program. I want to give it a fair shot and this seems like a great time for it and I've always admired people who can run for longer then a minute or two. I've always been overweight and terrible at running/jogging. Goal 2: Progress my incline push ups down to the floor. I'm going to do as many as I can on the floor, then finish with incline push ups and reducing the incline a little each week. I'm still recovering from damaging my rotator cuffs so this goal will be a bit more flexible and proper form will be most important. Goal 3: Organizing some part of the house for at least 30 minutes a day. Or 3 1/2 hours a week. After 3 years of just doing the necessity of house work, we have ended up with clutter piled up everywhere. (Having a MiL that shops as her hobby.. with most of the stuff we get as unnecessary junk. It's starting to drive me a little batty.) I went through some of Becca's stuff the other day to donate.. she had 2 jolly jumpers and cannot use one, at all. I hope everyone else has a great challenge! Enjoy a couple pictures of Becca, they had to be in links because they are too big. https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B6f4hlVhQc2dcDRrZExlaHlyV00/view?usp=sharing https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B6f4hlVhQc2dWnNBMXVSdUZjYVk/view?usp=sharing
  13. My Second Challenge, Yay! If the doc approves running and working out, I'll edit my challenge after my Dr. appt. on Jan. 9th. He said there's no real reason to not be active. If my tailbone starts hurting again, call him and we'll see if a shot helps again. Even if it does take 2.5 weeks to kick in. But didn't want to continue procrastinating on my other goals. I need to make space, in my house and in my life. I think it will help me feel motivated and a little more in control. So to work on this, 1. I'm going to get rid of 1 thing every day. I am awful at waking up on time. I roll out of bed just before I need to be at work. The fact that I have a laid back job atmosphere & live .5 mile from my visitor center just encourages this bad behavior. I know beyond a doubt that if i could wake up earlier, eat breakfast, and maybe do a small workout, then I would be in a better mood. I suck at going to bed at a decent hour and often only get 5 or 6 hours of sleep. I need to do better. 2. I will establish a morning routine and improve my bedtime & morning habits. *post doc edit* morning routine will include breakfast, some stretching, and some experimentation to find what else it should include.. hmm** I still need to work on pushups. In my last challenge, I only made it up to 3 full pushups and 7 kneeling ones. I really want to make it to 10 full, good form pushups. so, 3. Continue working toward my goal of 10 pushups. *post doc visit edit* all that really changed about this is that it will hurt less.* I miss running. It was the second only to martial arts in how great it was for stress relief. 4. I'm going to get new running shoes and begin a new running program. I probably need to start over with a 5K training program. *post doc visit* Going to get new running shoes at Fleet Feet on my next days off. But for now, as in tomorrow, I'm going to get started back. I think I'll do C25K and see how far into it can start. Maybe for my tail's sake, i should start on week one though.. hm. I want to be through at least week 4 before the end of the challenge, assuming I have no tail relapse. LifeQuests I'm going to limit myself on the number of hobby supplies I keep around. This is an effort to clean my second extra bedroom and get rid of the junk in it. I'm going to have at least one adventure a month this year, either, on my own or with family/friends. Obviously, this will extend past this challenge, but I will make it a part of each challenge this year. *edit* Edited to include tags. Some of them are even useful!
  14. The entire month of January is going to suck harder than usual. February is going to be interesting because hopefully there will finally be a steady pattern. I think that I'm mostly going to plan and do some preliminary work, hopefully be ready to start developing habits I can live with during the challenge after this one. For this challenge, I'm going to try different things at-whim. Basically here I'm going to take a quick note of what I did during the day or any troubles I had. This is the area of the house I need to attack. The attic storage and hubby's office aren't going to be my concern for a while.
  15. I want to make the house work for me more than I work for it. Have the kitchen be clean once in the day. (Between 30 and 36 is good, more is better.) Kitchen checklist: cutting boards cleanknives cleanmain counter wipeddrain-trap dumpeddishwasher statusfrying pans readylarge lid useable Less-important goals. Account for the day. Account for food waste. Poke at messes. Prepare sit-down projects that don't involve screens.
  16. Hello everyone! This is my second challenge, my first as an assassin. I've always been interested in bodyweight exercises and parkour, but I just recently started playing Black Flag and it inspired me to design my next challenge around Assassin's Creed. This series is seriously awesome. It makes me want to improve so badly xD Anyway! I found this amazing series called "Live by the Creed" and I was inspired by the "Reach New Heights" segment. So without further ado, here's my challenge: Main Goal: Get stronger I want to have the strength for real push ups and unassisted pull ups. If I'm going to start parkour, I need to build up a strong foundation first. I need to improve my upper body strength, my lower body strength and especially my core. Mission 1: Build my strength I'll start off with a modified version of Steve's Bodyweight Brigade level 1 workout 3x a week. I've changed reverse crunches to hanging knee tucks because I think I'll have better control while doing them. I've also added towel hangs as mentioned in the "Reach New Heights" article as being able to hang on for dear life sounds like a pretty useful skill. Reward: 5 STR Mission 2: Switch it up I'm going to add in at least one weekly activity, preferably on a weekend, in addition to my regular workouts. This could include swimming, running, walking, hiking, biking, kayaking, tag, DDR, etc. The point is to stay active, interested and on my toes. Depending on the activities that dominate in the next 6 weeks, reward: combo of DEX/STA, 3 points total Mission 3: Eat to perform One of Steve's rule is to never miss two in a row, whether it be healthy meals or workouts. For my third mission, I will not eat two unhealthy meals in a row. If I miss one, the next meal becomes the most important meal of the day and it has to be healthy, period. I'm going to count skipping a meal as a missed/unhealthy meal too, for the record. The better my nutrition/hydration, the better my performance will be. Reward: 3 CON, 1 WIS Life Quest: Get organized An assassin has to be organized, and organized I am not. By the end of each week, I will have organized one of the following: my entire room, my car/workstation, my bathroom/desk at home, or 1/3 of my storage unit. I know this sounds like a huge undertaking, but trust me, it's necessary and it has to be done by the end of this challenge. Reward: 3 WIS And lastly, I'll mention that instead of weighing/measuring everything today, I'm waiting until the 1st because I have to do it then anyway. So... we'll see. I might post them.
  17. Hello Fellow Rebels! I'm writing this from a Starbucks WiFi connection, still won't have my own internet for another 2 weeks. Last challenge was difficult to keep up with for this same reason, plenty of things happening and victories to track, but no way to alert people! Even now, I'm probably going to have to leave before I can finish, so I'll try to make this quick. Even though I'm a HORRENDOUSLY slow typist. My main quest for this challenge is to get ready for law school, which will start a month into the challenge. Then I'll have 2 weeks of classes to assess my preparedness and make any needed adjustments before the semester gets fully underway. I want to be able to balance a healthy lifestyle and a full class load, and that means sticking to a plan and a schedule. I'll actually get my class schedule sometime this week and be able to create (and post many pictures of) a comprehensive calendar to simulate what my schedule in law school will be like. I want to work on making meals, working out, and "studying" only in times that I'll actually have available to me between classes. More on how that will pan out exactly in a future post. For now, I have 3 goals for myself, to feed my body, my mind, and my soul. This may be the only "me" time I get for quite some time (three years if my lawyer friends are telling the truth). It's very important to me to not let my physical vessel suffer while I hone my mind. This is the only body I've got, after all. Toward that end: GOAL 1: I want to do bodyweight workouts 3 times a week, this is the BARE minimum. If I want to, I can take an off day and go for a walk or kayak on the lake or whatever, but I ABSLUTELY CANNOT slack on these workouts. I'm not giving myself a way out this time. I have literally nothing weighing on my time these days since quitting my job and moving, so there's no reason not to carve out the 3 hours a week it requires. If that. If I pick up a good pace I can get a 4 set circuit done in 30 minutes. It's about time I stopped babying myself and got back to the Amanda I was this time last year. This means a total of 18 workouts, which is not really that much of a commitment. The grading is as follows: A= 12-18 workouts, with some extra ones thrown in such as cycling and urban hikes B= 9-15 workouts with no extra time put in C= 6-10 workouts F= less than 6 workouts. This is not an option. GOAL 2: I want to make delicious and nutritious meals for me and my tiny family of one other person. We've been doing very well in making our own food (I cook, Nate cleans up) and I want to keep it that way. The thing that kills me currently is keeping in line with Nate's tastbuds and still keeping it Paleo. Right now, I don't really. There are a lot of white potatoes and rice, used to keep Nate's culinary attention and to keep him eating my food instead of going to a fast food place after I eat dinner. He's committed to eating more healthfully just like I am, but he's hopelessly picky. My real challenge is in finding whole food meals that he enjoys and doesn't realize are good for him ;-) I'll do this by making dinner at least 3 times a week, realistically it'll probably be more. If I'm meeting this goal too easily I'll adjust for difficulty later. This equals 18 dinners in all, so grading is: A= 15-20 nutritious and completely paleo meals B= 10-15 paleo meals, a few that cheat slightly C= 8-12 meals, most have some form of simple carb F= less than 10 cooked meals. If this happens, heaven help me. GOAL 3: I want to be ready administratively for when law school comes, this means making out a budget, getting textbooks, notebooks/pens and such, and arranging my workspace. This is more of a tiered system than letter graded, I'm going to have 6 tasks that need to be met by the end of the challenge. They are, in no particular order: Sort out official files and paperwork so that it doesn't drown my study sessionsCreate a budget that takes into account student loans and Nate's impending new jobBuy textbooks, get vaccinated, and upgrade ID (all on campus)Get new study materials, all pens and highlighters were accidentally tossed during the moveFind syllabi, transpose due dates into NEW date plannerCreate database of recipes to draw form that can be made in less than an hour or in a Crockpot for multiple mealsThese are the tools that will enable my overly engaged mind to rest easy on a cushion of over-preparation. I've already been told that trying to do supplemental reading before starting classes is mostly useless unless it's requested on the syllabus, and my tendency to overthink things is going to rear it's ugly head very soon if I don't have something productive to occupy my time. So that's this challenge in a nutshell. Bring on August! I can't wait to read what you guys are tackling this time.
  18. Why yes, yes they are. That being said, what the hell am I doing? Relaxation and Recovery are NOT my strong points, so it could be argued that I never stop "doing something", and that may be true, but why do I never "feel" like I do anything??? Perhaps because I don't "do" what is important to me. Why not? you ask. That IS the question. I have said before and I will say it again, I feel like my life is nothing but a series of chaotic events that I just manage, rather than actually living and enjoying my life...and I am starting to REALLY hate that. So, the ever present question in my head is "What do I enjoy?" and I have a few answers, and some of the realizations I have come to, aren't very pleasant, because well, I am not really a princess as much as i want to be...so I have to live in a world not structured for be to be a princess...and that is not how I like it! So...what do I enjoy: 1. Yoga (but I have realized that in order to "do" yoga, I need the perfect surrounding space...which makes me not "do" it.) 2. Reading 3. Cleaning and organizing and decorating my house (but I can't get the process started on my own...stupid Executive Functioning!!! grrrr! so I never actually do it either) 4. Climbing, jumping, running, generally acting like a child outdoors (I don't ever do this either, because I'm afraid of hurting myself mostly, and trying to get someone to do it with me is like pulling teeth around here and I don't like going alone, so I dont do this either) 5. the beach 6. Quiet (which is more of a need than a want, but I have teenagers, so you can imagine how much I get of it) 7. Cold weather (and I live in Florida...grrrrr) 8. Not having to worry about money (hahahahahahaha like this EVER happens ) 9. Helping people 10. Games (video, computer, board games etc.) 11. Making things colorful (decorating them, coloring them, crafts...whatever, I love looking around me and seeing lots of color) 12. Learning new things (which I am not sure why I shy away from this so much...fear of failure is the only thing I can guess, because I really love learning in general) So, my challenge goals are going to be to actually DO some things I enjoy, and not make excuses. The last time I did anything fun outdoors was when I was doing challenges for BL 1.0, and that seems like a lifetime ago, and i can't really do much physically at the moment anyway bc of my recent surgery...so those will have to wait. I am going to participate in BL 3.0 but it's not going to be part of my challenge this time. Probably next time for sure since it usually goes for more than one challenge round. Challenge Goal #1: Cleaning, Organizing and Decorating: Make a PvS (or PvP if anyone is interested) for doing Flylady daily routines, missions and zone work. and settle definitively on what I want as far as decor changes (I need new curtains and bedroom stuff mainly). I get a rainbow sticker for doing this everyday before 9pm. Challenge Goal #2: Quiet Time: Do the Mediations from the Mat and finish up the WoT series and use my earplugs in the house ALL the time if I need to. Spend 10 minutes after my breathing doing the Meditations, and just read before bed like I have been doing. I get a star sticker for the doing the meditations. Challenge Goal #3: Helping People: I have really been slacking on my Ambassador duties around here, granted I had a good reason, but it doesn't make me feel good to have committed to doing something and then not done it. I have done the same thing with my son's Scout troop and both make me feel terrible about myself. So I am going to go to his Scout meetings every week during this challenge and take on the training coordinator role that I have been assigned, and I am going to spend no less than 30 minutes, 3 days per week here helping out new and potential Druids. Challenge Goal #4: Learn something new: I need to learn how to do the various yoga breathing techniques correctly...and I really have put it off, because I don't ever feel like I'm "doing it right" and so I just quit...but I can't practice any asana right now, but I can damn sure sit on my mat and breathe...so I am going to spend 10 minutes a day just learning to breathe. I get a big smiley sticker for doing my breathing.
  19. No interesting story here. Sorry! I have so many ideas of what I want to do for these challenges, and of course, I always want to continue doing what I was doing before, that my google doc that I'm using for tracking was getting a bit ridiculous. So for this first challenge of the year, I'm prioritizing, and focusing on tracking the basic habits I want to build & continue, the ones that I think will benefit by being tracked. Here's my challenge (for those interested in reading more about my thoughts on each of these points, its all written out after). 1 - Main Life Goal - End Overeating - Step 1 WIS +3 CHA +2 • slow down and enjoy my food • this is a yes or no, per day. I don’t expect to be perfect, just to think about it every time I eat something, and to improve as time goes by. 2 - stretch every day for 10 minutes DEX +2 CON +1 • this will increase flexibility and reduce stress. • this doesn’t have to be 10 minutes straight, but can be 10 minutes spread throughout the day, especially if it means getting up from my desk at work regularly • this is a yes or no for each day 3 - strength 3 times per week STR +2 CHA +1 STA +1 • this will increase strength, specifically core strength, and great cross-training for summer running 4 - De-clutter / Cleaning / Organizing WIS +1 CON +2 • I will not make more of a mess for myself - when something is in my hand, I will put it away properly the first time - this is a yes or no for each day, 50% of the points • at least once per week I will clean or declutter or reorganize one “big†area - this is weighted for 50% of the points Things I may (or may not) track, but do not get points for: running (when I'm off work and its not too slippery) cooking new meals climbing (which I haven't done in ages but really want to get back to) I also hope to participate in more mini-challenges, which I haven't done in a long time. (And now its the long wordy version for anyone who is brave enough to continue!) My main life goal is to end overeating. I really want to be one of those people who eats to live. The occasional extra helping of something you really love once a year is okay, but that's not me... not yet, anyway. Its a pretty vague goal, but I feel like there are smaller steps I can take to work towards it, toward learning when I'm full. Here are what I think steps could be: slow down, drink more water, mindful eating, pre-portioned meals... I'm also going to continue with the strength training 3 times per week. I feel like I don't necessarily need to keep this as a challenge because I did so well at it last time, BUT I question whether or not I'd keep up with the 3 times per week without having the tracking to keep me accountable. Plus, I really enjoyed it and I'm proud of how I did last time, so I feel like maybe having a "birdie" in my corner is a bonus... I'll just give it less points. lol Cleaning - its such a challenge for me, still. I do want to declutter but I feel like maybe I need to switch it up a bit this time. So I'm going to stop making more work for myself - I'm going to put things away when they're actually in my hands the first time! Especially if its in the same room - example getting changed - dirty clothes can go right in the hamper, clean clothes will be refolded or hung... immediately. I do have a good system when I'm moving things between floors, so I'll continue that - there's no point running up and down all the time as that's a bit of a waste of time (or can be) but I'm going to put things away properly the first time. I think this will be a daily yes or no - did I do it or not. I will also do at least one "big" cleaning each week. Stretching & flexibility - I'm going to try this one again. Stretching for 10 minutes per day. I will also include, this time, if I get up regularly at work and move around and stretch then, too. So it doesn't have to be 10 minutes at one time. These aren't too assassiny, but I really do feel like an assassin more than anything else, so here I am again. Happy New year to everyone, and may 2014 be the best year yet!
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