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Train, Maintain, Stay Sane with 18ckName: 18ck Class and Race and All That: Ferret Demon and Free-Range Scout Level: 4 Stuff I like: Readin' Runnin' and Rowin' Lard Content: 12 st 7 ib (drifted up slightly...) Starting Stats: STR 8 | DEX 7 | STA 13 | CON 9 | WIS 9 | CHA 4 Total: 50 This challenge is going to be a bit more subdued than the last one, with no sound effects or anything. March is going to be a busy, busy month - the last month before a big project deadline - and this usually means sitting down a lot, with my head in the computer, not sleeping much, not seeing the light of day, hunching over, snacking and generally not doing well. Last time around I gained a lot of weight. But this time, I have a plan. It's a plan that keeps me busy and keeps me moving forward on my core goals without being too demanding of time. I also want to keep some variety and keep it interesting without making unrealistic expectations of the amount of time I'll have. I'm also going to do a proper points scoring system this time rather than "we-e-ell, this feels like a sort of B+" which is a bit wishy-washy really. Fitness 1: Run Faster At least 1 short, fast run and 1 long run per week, aiming to improve technique and run faster without necessarily expending a lot more effort - building on some of the drills we looked at in the mini-challenge and aiming not to waste a lot of momentum in messy landings. Scoring: Just do the runs=C; Improve and do a full circuit of Richmond Park in 1 hr = B; 58 min = A; 55 min = A+ [Current PB for this distance: 1 hour dead, but that was a couple of years ago, and I just about did myself in, so 55 minutes is ambitious, to say the least!] Points on offer: 1 STA, 1 STR, 3 DEX Fitness 2: Get Lighter Eschew the ways of the caramel-filled wafer (7AM-start-food), shun the home-baked goodness, lose the "it's probably paleo" excuse when faced with a fry-up and stick to proper healthy food, aiming to lose weight, not gain it, and shooting for 12 st (that's a loss of 7lb). Scoring: Gain Weight: Fail, Maintain: D, Lose 1lb = C; 3lb=B; 4lb=B+; 5lb=A-; 6lb = A; 7lb or dare I say more =A+ Points on Offer: 2 CON, 2 CHA Fitness 3: Keep Moving and Keep It Interesting Don't just sit there - Take a break once an hour and walk about for a bit Do at least one bout of proper get-you-out-of-breath exercise of some kind once a day - strength or stretch, Try at least one new and different exercisey thing per week(end). Possible items to include A handstand, Rock Climbing, Revolving Plank of Doom, Some new yoga pose...? (Any suggestions most welcome) Scoring: Start with 100 points and lose one for each day with inadequate breaks and one for each day with no exercise, add five for each week I do a new interesting thing (so max possible =130) If I get 130 that's an A+; 120 or more is A, 110 or more is a B 100 or more a C, and so on Points on Offer: 3 points to be determined by whatever exercises I find to do and what sort of good they seem to be doing me Level Up: Portuguese (De Certeza!) Work through 2 more chapters of Lathrop and Dias with exercises over the course of the challenge; Watch the RTP news at breakfast at least 3 days a week and do at least one "thing" per day - so if not one of the above then at least listen to a podcast or read a bit of portuguese text. Scoring: Unbroken Streak for 42 days, plus both chapters read and 3 days a week of news = A. If I go beyond that substantially with some feat of linguistic heroism then it's an A+. Any breakage in the streak goes down to a B, then C (if I don't finish the chapters and watch the news) and D (If I don't manage to do either). I'll only call it an outright fail if I capitulate completely and don't touch the Portuguese books for a week or more due to work. Points on Offer: 3 WIS Bonus Rounds: Gold Dubloons - let's grab 'em and go! Here are some things I am going to try to shoehorn in somewhere along the way: Take the final, practical stage of the Thames Tideway Steering Certificate ("Steercert"), which will give me a lot more freedom of movement to scull independently Some Librivox Volunteering - preferably recording but given the time sitch, more likely proof-listening Give Blood Get my teeth cleaned by the hygienist Have a week without coffee. I AM NOT LOOKING FORWARD TO THIS but it just seemed like a good idea to see what I was like as a baseline without nature's life-giving nectar. A week should be enough to feel like I have stared into the Abyss and it has stared back into me...