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  1. Perfectly timed you say? Timed?!? Perhaps, because someone has defected to the rhythm section friends! I, along with some other wonderful nerds, decided to "#BackToMusic2022" and folks, I really have done a smashing job of this. I've been playing piano consistently for the whole year! About 6 weeks ago, I also picked up acoustic guitar and started slowing learning that. (It's wrecking my finger tips yo! LOL - And the D chord is impossible for me to play nicely even still.) And, so, what else does one do in that case but decide .oO( Clearly, I am not learning enough instruments, I should buy a bass! It will help my fingers get used to strings, but more gently!) So I bought a bass last week and it's now in my possession. As far as everything else goes... I have major regrets that one thing after another this year has become an excuse for why I am not on track to be slimmed down and back to strong and healthy for the summer. Part of that is, well, health. In January I started dealing with some weird, non-critical but annoying symptoms that lead to several trips to docs and diagnosed theories on what is to blame. About 2 weeks ago, the last of the weird little symptoms were gone and I was anxious for not only a return to feeling myself, but also a much anticipated vacation in early May. And then I got Covid. In fact, I still have 3 more days before I can leave the 10 day 'quarantine and/or mask up' schtick and return to normal routine. I had it mildly, but, as someone who has not even had so much as a two day sniffle in like 4 years, being sick is still being sick. I am not quite fully back on my feet yet, but I have high hopes that at the 2 week proper mark I should be pretty much okay. It did cause my sis and I to also have to cancel our trip. Soooo, yeah, long and short of it is that 2022 hasn't been the easiest year thus far. But, post recovery here, plus the turning of the seasons, plus a brand new bass in my possession are all great reasons to get back to the right tempo! I also am really inspired to clean up my eating habits again after this whole Dances with Germs thing. A well fueled, well nourished body just does things better, usually. I've also been watching more anime again lately, so my interest in getting my art going again is kind flooning. So we've got, piano, guitar, bass, art, strength training, cardio health routines, and my usual D&D nights and friends hang outs, lol. I know that tracking food works best for me to shed a few pounds, so I need to get into the mindset to do that. If I do more cooking with the boyfriend, (who also just had covid, but we didn't catch it from each other actually) that will help with tracking on the weekends, and reining in the spending that's gotten out of hand with me. Woops. So, some goals. Track Food Daily - if a meal out can't be actively tracked, then rely on sensible eating for that meal. Strength Train - 2x a week is my sweet spot. Cardio-Ish - 3x a week. Piano - 4x a week Bass - 4x a week /or 20 minutes daily (lets see how it goes) Guitar - 15m daily has been working, but with other instruments, I won't keep this as a MUST do daily. Art - 2-3x a week, let's see how it fits in Connect - Do that connect with people thing that I talked about last challenge. Follow on the forums, dangit, Starpuck, DO THIS!
  2. Hey fellow rebels, I am Casbin a former member of the Rebel Subforum. While I am not exatcly new around here I haven't been on for a few years but kept missing the Community around here. You know how it goes, priorities need to be set and my path had me occupied with another angle. I will do a proper introduction and layout for the challenge later on but let's get down to business first. The title says it all, I wasn't expecting for a new Challenge to start tomorrow but let's roll with it. As said already I am enroute to a reboot which is why this intervall is taged as a lifestyle-challenge. Why prep a reboot you may ask? Do Not Procrastinate - get on with it. Thing is, I have no effing clue were I am at or headed. It is time to take a look at the Journey of the past few years, count my blessings and clean up my turf. Or to put it nerdier terms. I am wrapping up an entire Campaigne right now, loads of things have happended and have grown and sharpened my PC. Rather then jumping head first into the next Adventure, I will review the spoils, refurbish the Fortress and move on to a new Campagne. Now you have been warned, my goals for this Frame will be fast and loose for subjective goals are hard to quantivy. A proper Framework is already in the making but I wanted to put this out there before I can chicken out of it and let you know that this might be a bit far out compared to the predefined Layout. If you are good with that, be my guest and I will accomodate you to the best of my abilities; if it's not your cup of tea, no hard feelings, we all take this endevour to the best ofour abilities. See you soon, there is more stuff to be done before Icanget the ball rolling Casbin
  3. Been away for awhile. Tried things that didn't work. Tried things that did, until life got in the way. Workshopped more stuff. Long story, longer story, long and complicated story. Here are my new/current goals. 1. Sleep more: 7+ hours. I need a decent bedtime so I can get decent sleep. I am currently writing this at 2:53 am, and that irony does not escape me. I work typical business hours. 2. Actually follow the workout plan. About a month ago, I came up with a workout plan that I think will finally work really well with my busy schedule. Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Saturday Sunday Work Work Work Work Work Jujitsu (AM) Church “ “ “ “ “ “ “ “ “ “ Cardio & Abs Resistance Jujitsu (PM) Life Group “ “ Cardio & Abs Resistance Quads & Chest *Cardio & Abs if time and energy “ “ Errands (Hams, Lats & Delts) I think this one will work better. Ideally I would like to do barbell training. But my current gym is a Planet Fitness, and they don't have barbells. I've tried to do my best to stimulate a barbell, but I just keep on hurting myself instead. So I'm going to just focus on muscle groups instead of particular lifts, until I can get a different gym environment. I'm also giving myself a lot of leeway on what type of sets I will do. At this point I don't care so much about a particular program like pyramids, 5/3/1, 5x5s etc., just the muscle groups. I also may switch out the Quads for extra Hams exercises depending on how my IT band is acting that week. 3. Water. 6+ glasses Water, water everywhere, but I'm still dehydrated. I always have water nearby, but for some reason I don't drink very much of it. And that leads to low energy, headaches, and dizziness for me; enough is enough.
  4. Stronkey Kong's Battle Log -- since 7/20/2021 Remember when parents and teachers would threaten us with "That's going on your permanent record." Then you grow up and realize no such thing really exists. Well now at least one does, but it only goes from 7/20/21 and on. I have been on the forums for 8 years and under almost as many names (Darwin's Demon, Curl Brogo, Brogo, Chris Tarly, and now Stronkey Kong). I started my journey at 270 lbs. I am currently 270 lbs, though I've been higher and lower. I started this battle log as Chris Tarly in Jan. 2020 -- you all know why it fell by the wayside. As of 7/20/21 I am: Buying a house Getting some weight loss traction using Noom Sitting on top of 50K words of a novel Practicing Tibetan Buddhism Realizing all my goals are becoming super long term, and I'd like to see a more permanent record With that I'm rebooting and rennovating this Battle log. More to come. BIG DISCLAIMER: To followers and would be commentors, in the spirit of keeping this battle log organized, please restrict comments to thoughtful questions, comments, or words of encouragement about the process on this thread. Please no funny gifs, shitposting, or offtopic/derail posts. You can do this stuff on my challenge threads which I will link from here and/or in my signature. I want this to be an organized record so I can find things later. When in doubt, do not post. Simply using the like buttons/emojis will be sufficient to show support. Victories (large and small): 1/9/2020 -- After little over 1 week in the NFA, my weight dropped 5 lbs. and my measurements all decreased by 0.25-0.5 inches.
  5. So I've been on hiatus for most of a year for a variety of reasons (good and bad). But it's time for a respawn, so I'm reaching out again to the support networks I have (the forums here, Connect on the WeightWatchers app, etc) to try and maintain accountability and get regular feedback on things. Yet to do: re-write my Life at Level 50 mission statement/goals (Work changed, and with it, the driving need to drown my frustrations in food and shopping). The previous battle log is here, if anyone wants to visit the unpleasant swamp of the past: https://rebellion.nerdfitness.com/index.php?/topic/83812-tokidoki-kittys-daily-log/ Going forward: - If not a daily log, at least a weekly one - Revisit and refine my goals regularly (and set them up in smaller, manageable pieces) - Improve my productivity habits / reduce my procrastination habits -- this goes for both work and home. - Address, treat/mitigate my physical pains (through diet, exercise, etc). - Financial success (large savings account) and freedom (no more credit card debt/recurring balance carryovers) - I want to go to Japan and spend a lot of time on experiences and shopping for tea and kimono equipment that I can't get in the States. Need money to do that. :/
  6. Hi everyone. This is a placeholder for my challenge, which will show up soon. Much later: Well - that was no fun... So the last few weeks have been eventful... Good Stuff: Ms. Moros and I celebrated our 25th wedding anniversary. We had a lovely nerdy week off We fixed up our bedroom, which has been neglected for a long time Bad Stuff: My plantar fasciitis reappeared, and I had to take fun-filled drugs and wear an air cast. Work is a wee bit overwhelming - a lot of deadlines hit at once. So, obviously this will be a three week challenge. Details below the fold.
  7. I am a 36 year old genderqueer person who lives in Chicago . I am a clinical psychologist who loves fantasy novels, table top role playing games, and fiber crafts. I used to be extremely active, but between schooling and working, the active hobbies have fallen by the wayside. I hope to move to commuting ot work by public transportation and walking in the spring and as such, I need to be able to walk a mile comfortably. I need to be able to move my body and do so with confidence and without hurting myself. I also miss cute clothes and having a style that better matches my gender. It is really hard to find stylish clothing when you are fat that is not hyper feminine. So yeah, that's me, taking a crack at being accountable. I am back here at NF to get some support and accountability and community GOAL1: Nutrition. I am going to be working the NF Academy 10 level system in order to move towards level 7 as a long term stopping point. I will track my calories and macros on MyFitnessPal. GOAL 2: Meditation. I used to have a robust daily meditation practice and I miss the mental clarity and the ritual of it. I am going to start with 5 minutes daily, using this singing bowl track. GOAl 3: Movement. I am recovering from a knee in jury and I am afraid to rush into things, so I am keeping low-to-no impact until I lose 50 lbs. My first movement goal will be yoga for 10 minutes 5 days a week. LEVEL UP MY LIFE: Training. I want to advance professionally and keep myself growing clinically. As such, I need to keep accessing training and keep growing my clinical tool box. I will work this month to make a training schedule for this year including a budget plan for travel and expenses. I finally have enough income to do this stuff, I should plan it or it will never happen!
  8. Hey ya all! Whimsy here. Been a member since 2017 but have never joined a challenge until now. Was active at the start, accomplishing quest after quest then ultimately ran out of steam and just stopped. ^^' This time I decided to join the challenge to give myself a sense of accountability and a feeling of friendly competitiveness. As for the title of my post, it is my mantra this year. Self-Awareness. I know I am overweight and I have formed bad habits. Self-Acceptance. I accept those as simply facts about myself. Facts that are not gonna go away or disappear magically no matter how much I wish them to do so. Change. And so I'm going to give my all taking the steps I know I need to do in order to change them for my own sake. It will be hard, I have tried changing numerous times in the past only to give up and bury my head in the proverbial sand. But this time, I am armed with the knowledge I have learned from those past tries and this burning feeling in me that is getting stronger and stronger each day I give in to my procrastination and bad habit of self-denial. My main goals these year are: 1. Fitness Goals - Lose more or less 66 lbs. 2. Diet Goals - Avoid unhealthy carbs (cakes, fast food, bread) and stick to my meal plan which involves eating more veggies and drinking more water. 3. Skin Care and Beauty Goals - Be consistent with drinking 2 mugs of warm water after waking up. Follow my daily beauty rituals. 4. Work/Money Goals - Since I work freelance, I need to be consistent with my working schedule. The past year I have been admittedly lazy, working only when I want to or only when I need money for something. This year I'm gonna make it so I work 6 days a week, 8 hrs a day. This is so I can save up money and be able to travel. In line with those main goals, my goals for this 4 week challenge are as follows: 1. Fitness Goal: -Workout consistently. -4x Full Body Strength Training/Week. -Yoga Everyday. Lighter yoga focused more on stretching during the days I have strength training. -Guided Meditation every morning. 2. Diet Goal: -Substitute quinoa instead of eating white rice. -Pace my meals. No eating/drinking after 2 hrs of every meal. -Restrain myself from buying and eating cookies and cakes. -More veggies and lean meat. -Be aware of the food I eat and drink. -No eating after 7pm. 3. Skin Care and Beauty Goals: -Drink 2 mugs of warm water after waking up everyday. -Wait 45 minutes before eating breakfast. - Maintain daily, weekly and monthly beauty rituals. 4. Work/Money Goals: -Work 6 days a week, 8 hrs a day. Adjusting my working time as needed as long as I get to work 8 hrs a day. -Save and appropriate money on the list of things/activities you need to save up on. 5. Additional Goal: -Sleep 6-7 hrs per night. Sleep early, wake up early.
  9. "You have to give it a name." The words were a gentle tug, but she couldn't bring herself to open her eyes yet. She wasn't sure where she was, how she got here, even who she was… The Voice seemed to sense this, somehow, and continued speaking. "Yours is Shaar Al-Khatabi." Ah. That sounded familiar. She mouthed the words slowly, 'al-khatabi', as if pronouncing them for the first time. But they were hers, through and through. Shaar Al-Khatabi continued taking slow metered breaths, the air brisk and cold in her lungs and equally heavy in scent, each one a little less shaky than the one prior as she slowly began to extend her senses outward to her surroundings. Fingers of one hand pressed gingerly into the ground she lay curled on; slightly damp, cold, spongy. She turned her hand, feeling leaves and pine needles against her palm, and honed in on the sensation against her skin as she brushed them aside. And one eye finally opened, slowly, gingerly, to confirm her suspicion that she was in fact, outside. She blinked slowly, trying to clear her blurry vision in vain; sunlight dodged through a heavy nest of branches above to illuminate the forest floor, autumnal hues of leaves stretching as far as the eye could see, piled aside age-worn stumps and massive tree trunks and strangely stacked rock piles. It was all too much - sensory overload - and Shaar squinted her eyes shut again quickly, curling a little tighter into her fetal position. "I feel like I've been poisoned." Exhaustion reigned and each enunciation was a struggle, and barely audible as they passed her lips. But he heard. "I know you do." The words were soft, kind, and tinged with a thread of regret. They settled around her like a warm blanket, comfortable and reassuring, and Shaar quietly relaxed her limbs and opened both eyes this time to have her gaze settle upon The Voice. He crouched at her side, unthreatening, slight in stature and in shape. His clothes were a shambles of rags and there was something about him she couldn't quite place, and perhaps it was his youth that caught her off guard; he was barely a scrap of a boy. Their gazes locked for a long few moments - hers that of a wounded animal, lost and frightened and scared, and his of nothing less than loving kindness, and Shaar felt the world around her slow as her breath hitched in her chest. "We're all so proud of you. All of us." He reached out one small hand, settling it delicately on the crown of her head as he spoke, and at the touch a single tear slid from one eye, curving slowly along her cheek. "You've done so much. Seen so much. Come so far." His intonation light and airy, like the first flakes of snow drifting from the sky on a cold winter day. Like the brief oft-lost moments of the morning where the sun glitters newly across the ocean. The pad of his thumb moved slowly across her temple as he spoke; back and forth, rhythmic. "We've been watching you for a long, long time. You are so skilled in conquering adversity in your path. It's why We chose you. But this challenge… this one…" The Voice let his words trail off as he lifted his hand from her head and moved it to his side, digging amidst the scraps to retrieve what seemed to be some sort of box. It was circular in shape, barely the size of his small palm, and as he held it out to her Shaar regarded the item with a quiet curiosity for several moments before extending her own hand in kind, gently taking the item with dirty fingers. The box had a hinge on one side, and she turned it over and over in her hands a few times before slowly flipping open the lid, steeling herself for whatever may come out or be lying in wait inside. "This one is different." There was a moment of quiet shock, and bright green eyes widened as Shaar found that she was staring right back at herself from the mirrored lid. - this one is different - Time froze for a brief few moments as the words rolled in her head, and Shaar slowly understood the task that lay before her. She let out a slow sigh, tilting her head to one side thoughtfully, watching her mirror image do the same. "This one is different," The Voice reiterated, kind but firm. "And you have to give it a name." She answered in one smooth word, voice lilting with the syllables. "Karaoghlanlar." ---- Hi my friends, and welcome (almost) to 2019! And also welcome to the story of Shaar. A while back I stumbled upon my old Nerd Fitness character I made eons ago, and it seemed to come at the right time for me, as inspiration with what to do with myself moving forward. I've always loved writing and have tried narratives a few times but they've always flamed out. This one though... we'll see, I'll do my best! It'll evolve as I do, and I think that'll be easier and more flexible on my creativity. ( The Karaoghlanlar are the nine evil sons of the Mongol deity Erlik Knah, the god of death and the underworld! ) 2018 was kind of a shit show (kind of??) and moving forward everything is going to be, and needs to be, different. Things that I thought worked for me in the past don't anymore, and I've effectively set myself back to square one to figure out what does work, and how to reawaken and move forward. This challenge will be different too, because this time none of my challenges come from outside, but instead inside. I'm still kind of in a hard place mentally and need to effectively deal with myself and learn how to take care of myself better, and all over again. My first challenge is my biggest: 1. Drink Less This is the big monkey on my back right now, and while I don't drink to excess at all, I still drink more than I would like to and I know it's not good for me. It's not a healthy way to cope and I don't want to do that anymore. It's bad for my skin, it's bad for my weight, it messes with my sleep... I KNOW all this but it's still hard to avoid "just one drink" to relax, and then it turns into two, and sometimes three. DO NOT WANT ANYMORE. My goal here is to not go cold turkey, but if I do want to drink, do it only on the weekends. That's it. Simple, huh?.. 2. Move Intentionally I've become so sedentary due to a. not working yet and b. it being winter in New England, and it's doing a number on me. I feel it in my achy body and my energy levels and this too, is not what I want. I'm not sure what I -do- want fitness-wise anymore, but that'll come in time, and right now I just need to get moving. 30 minutes of intentional movement at least 4 times a week. This can be anything from yoga to mobility work to getting outside. Just do something. 3. Find What Works This last one is less pass-or-fail but more trial-and-error - my self-care toolbox is empty and I need to find out what fits in there now. The first 3 months of a new year are always the hardest for me mentally and emotionally, and I have a feeling 2019 won't be any different... I need to keep a close eye on myself and figure out how to navigate these tricky times now that I'm in a whole new world. That's it! I'll start small, and see where it takes me. <3 ALSO HEY HI SORRY SO SERIOUS SHAAR WHERE'S THE CAPSLOCK?!!?! RIGHT HERE MY DUDES~
  10. ShadowSilk's goals for this Challenge: 1. Stick to the MFP plan 2. Walk for 20 minutes a day, five days a week 3. Do the strength training plan Shaar made for me 3x a week 4. Get back to knitting. I like knitting. 5. Write 500 to 1,000 words a week on any one of my multiple sundry projects -- it doesn't matter whether it's OW or FF, just WRITE. 6. Do my affirmations EVERY. SINGLE. DAY.
  11. h3r0

    H3r0. A New Year

    Hiro, hero for hire. Ruthless, intelligent, efficient. You have an impossible problem, then he's the man to call. Slim, trim, white button up shirt, cocky grin, completely self contained and self assured. He stays in peak physical condition through resistance training and daily activity. His home is very warm, cozy, and inviting. His days are spent working, solving problems with planning and calm efficiency. His nights are spent with his loving family and in his various pursuits and adventures. Level 1 (again) 2019 a new year and a new me. I will get my fitness back, no more having a great month of workouts followed by 3-4 months of inactivity so I have to start from scratch all over again. I just came off of a good month of 5x5 training and a dirty bulk, starting second month with HFT and a mini cut. (waistline got a little out of control) 2019: I will continue to work out every month for the entire year. JAN: I will workout 5 days a week. I will be organized and plan my days. January's focus is organization. I have a new daily planner and I will use it and set daily MITs. 2019: I will obtain my Lean Expert certification. JAN: I will use my planner every week day and attempt to use it on the weekends. I need some fun and adventure in my life. My life is very structured with WORK -> DINNER / BATHE KIDS / WORKOUT -> BEDTIME -> WORK. 2019: I will perform one fun activity or adventure every month. JAN: I will practice drawing once a week.
  12. Happy New Year Everyone! So, I'm finally back, and glad to be here. I am ready to reboot like a ranger: Ms. Moros is back to normal, and I can reboot my workout program. For a while, her situation was like this: Now, she's better, and I have been rebuilding quietly. Now, I am ready to get back into it. My goals are pretty simple: 1. Continue with my sleep and morning exercise goals 2. Create a healthy way to wind down in the evening, and better prepare for the morning 3. Focus on food - the 80% of the battle: Details are below the fold. I still need to add an appropriate award, but I need to think about that for a bit. Maybe some new NF gear?
  13. Introduction I've never been big on New Year's Resolutions (he types on New Year's Eve), but I've been feeling the itch to get real about taking care of myself for a couple months now, but the timing hasn't been right. I'm an amature musician for my church, playing violin in a small ensemble and playing with a bell choir, and between extra practices and performances, December was not the right time to try and make major changes; so this isn't New Year's but Post-Christmas Resolutions! I've been struggling with my weight for as long as I can remember. I crossed the 300 lb mark in high school, and haven't been under it since. I came close back in 2015, but then the wheels came off my life and I've been failing to get tracktion again ever since. What worked for me in 2015 was following the Nerd Fitness Academy, and posting in forums with people like minded people; I'm hoping that Secret Sauce works for me again. Starting Point 6'3" Tall Currently 361.4 lbs (Highest Weight 375 lbs) (Lowest Weight 305.9 lbs on Dec 7 2015) Being treated for Narcolepsy, low thyroid and low testosterone. Amazingly not Diabetic, but I know that if I don't change my current path, it is only a matter of time. Long Term Goals: 1. Lose 111 pounds. I don’t know what a healthy weight will end up being for me, but I know it’ll be easier to see down at 250. 2. Eliminate all debt (including my student loan) by the end of 2024. I’ve got a few other milestones slated for that year, and I want that milestone to make the list.
  14. THE SILVER ARCHER: BOOK THREE Chapter 4: Chrysalis There was frost on the etched glass of the window where I sat, my arms wrapped around my knees, watching students hurrying through the light cold rain to classes. My stiff new uniform vest dug into the soft skin under my arms, but I didn't move, because I didn't mind. This uniform had been tailored just for me, as opposed to the straight-cut, hand-me-down uniform I was wearing; and once it softened up with use, it would be much more comfortable than what I had before. My fingers came up to touch the silver arrow pin on my right chest again. Just over a week ago, my mentor, Mistral, had teared up proudly as she pinned it on my brand-new vest and whispered "Well done". My time of study in the Temple Academy was almost complete. When I first received my powers of healing and clarity from the Silver Bow, I could only channel them to the arrows I fired from the Bow; but even though I quickly realized that the power flowed through me and I could both generate and control it, the guidance I had received from Mistral and others during my studies had greatly increased what I could do. For my final examination, I had demonstrated my understanding of my studies by creating a visual representation of the theories and practices they had taught me - all by pulling and generating the powerful light into shapes and movement that they could see. It was more than I ever dreamed I could do. And when Mistral pinned that arrow on my chest, she was finally telling me that I was ready - I was sufficiently prepared to leave the Academy and go out into the world. I hugged my knees tighter into my chest and rested my forehead on them. I had been lulled for a week into thinking this was all over - I went to the tailor in town to get my new uniform; I bought new white shirts and bloused trousers, and indulged in some new dark skirts and dresses; I spent several days lavishly buying gifts for my family, for the upcoming celebration of the King's birthday; and since I didn't have to report to my committee, I spent many of the days sleeping well past daybreak and staying up to read or play long into the night. But the truth was that my work was far from over. The list of things I had to complete before I could receive the rest of my insignia and be formally discharged was long, and many of the tasks required deep thought and many days of work. I only had three weeks left to complete them. The younger mentors who weren't far removed from the Academy themselves had warned me that it was easy to lapse into this mindset when the examination was over - and that I would regret it if I gave in. I turned my head to look out the window again, and rested my hand against the glass to watch the fog slowly puff out around it. I had no motivation to get up and go back to my room to start writing or diagramming. All I wanted was to sleep. I had been sitting that way for nearly ten minutes when a soft alarm began to rise in the back of my mind and I frowned. Something was wrong. The frost - the frost was now inside the window. But - I looked outside and it was still raining, still above freezing. The temperature in my little alcove was dropping faster than the temperature outside. With a gasp I jerked my hand back and looked at it; and sure enough, delicate traces of frost had begun curl around my fingers and etch themselves into my palm. "No!" I spun around and grabbed for my Bow, but I had left it back in my room; and sure enough, in the deserted hallway before me stood the ghostly apparition of the Dark Elf, my nemesis, Caranthir Aranwas, his white hair spilling gracefully down his back and his silvery robes cascading around his slender body. He had returned. Before I could move he had lunged across the hallway and slammed my throat to the glass with one of his graceful, ice-strong hands. "What's the matter, Eldarwen?" he murmured, his breath a wintry wind against my neck as he drew near, probing my eyes with his pale blue-white ones. I struggled against his grip but felt his power slowly locking me into place as he calmly, gently traced the edge of my face with his other hand, leaned back to gaze at my new uniform and smirked as my breath thinned to a gurgle. "You are surprised to see me in this place, my beloved? Well, you shouldn't be. When you think I'm far away in the forest I'm right beside you. I hear your thoughts as you hear mine. We are more -" he rested his other hand at my waist "- intimately connected than you admit to yourself." "What do you want?" I choked, trying to kick at him and gagging in frustration as he easily swept aside. "Why here? Why now?" "Why not now?" he arched his eyebrows and shrugged lightly. "You have completed a great feat, Eldarwen, and I commend you. But your training is not yet complete - you are not a fully fledged archer of the Movement. You are so much more vulnerable in these days than you realize. You feel safe and powerful and do not realize that you are like a fragile caterpillar in your chrysalis - changing, growing, becoming something beautiful and strong; but you aren't there yet, my beloved." He tightened his grip just a bit more so the edges of my vision began to fade. All I saw as I fought to suck for air was his long, slim face close to mine, slack and passive, but burning behind with desire and hatred. "If I take you down now, you will forever be a half-blown dream, a glimpse of greatness never realized." A bit of his apathy slipped away and a cruel smile rose to his eyes. "Come with me now, beloved. Come to the forest and let me give you rest. You've poured your soul into these silly assignments, this system with all its rules and shame, for far too long. You were born to be free, to rule, my queen. Come with me. Let all this go. Leave it behind and come, take your rest. I know you, Eldarwen, and I see the exhaustion in your eyes. I will free you from all this. Just let go, come with me, come to be my queen, as I've always wanted. Do you hear? I have always wanted you. Come with me." My consciousness was fading ... I had to ... do something ... find a way to pry his hand from my throat, I realized sluggishly, struggling to keep my eyes open. My hands were still free - yes, both of them; they were still free. I could - Thought faded but instinct took over. Clumsily I lifted a hand as if to grab his wrist; but when he feinted away, my other hand shot up and connected with his neck. He cried out in agony as the white-hot power pierced his neck and seared his flesh, stumbling backward and releasing my throat. I hung on, bringing my other hand up to hold his shoulder and support myself as I gasped for air, and summoning all my strength to pour the light into his body. He gripped my arms with his own powers but I held on despite the icy hot pain. "You have no power over me, Caranthir Aranwas," I snarled, bringing my own face close to his. "Your words will not sway me from my purpose and your seduction will not lure me from my duties. I am the Silver Archer, the Arrow-Healer. Even in this, even in these last few days between my past and my future, I am more than you will ever be and I am stronger than you will ever know. I am bound by love to protect my people, to free the helpless from your power, to bring the captives back home. I will not allow you to stop me and I will not allow my weakness to become your power. I will defeat you and I will succeed!" I let go of his neck and he sagged to the ground, bleeding, great drops of his mercury-blood splashing and sizzling to the floor. But I knew he was not vanquished, only weakened; and as he rocked back and lifted his hands to fire a blast of ice and fire at my heart, I smashed my hands against his and forced my own powers down his arms, watching his terrified face with grim satisfaction as the light illuminated him vein by vein, traveling back to his own heart. "No, stop, have mercy," he cried; but I did not stop. "When have you shown me mercy?" I cried. "When have you tried to help me? To protect me? No, Aranwas, I will assert my power over you at every turn and remind you every day of my life that you do not control me, you will not conquer me, and you will bow to my will and my mission!" With a tremendous effort, he tore his hands away from me and fell backward just before my powers reached his heart; and with a snarl and a cry, he stumbled to his feet, met my eyes for one glaring moment, then turned and vanished through the wall, leaving blood and a burning smell behind. I took a deep shivering breath and fell to my knees in the hall. The Dark Elf had returned. I was not safe. Now I could see the danger lying in wait for me during this silent, liminal time before I left the Academy. I was not free yet and I was not safe from defeat or failure. There were still powers waiting to attack me if I gave in to my fatigue and apathy. Setting my jaw, I got to my feet and went to retrieve my cloak from the windowsill. I was determined to complete this transformation and resist the temptation to sleep this time away. If I wanted to emerge prepared to take my place in the Movement, I had to keep fighting, keep practicing, keep pressing forward. I headed toward the stairs toward my room. I would not leave my Bow behind again.
  15. Hi Everybody, I chose to skip the last challenge period because of outside events. A number of my family members are in crisis right now and I made the choice to focus on them and some work-related issues. Now, I would like to get back to getting healthier, bendier, stronger, and making weight loss a focus. I really need to get back into healthier routines. This week is a little crazy - a grant runs out of money at the end of the week and I need to spend as much of the money as I can before the week ends. This reminds me of the old game shows where people would throw stuff in a shopping cart before time ran out: Also, I have final exams to grade next week. As a student, I dreaded finals. As a professor, I dread them too: But, enough negativity. I'll post more details later, but my priorities are: 1. Rebuild my routines bit by bit - don't skip a day. It's better for me right now to do less, but do it consistently. 2. Focus on wins. As Tank said a long time ago - "My focus determines my reality." I choose to focus on wins, no matter how small. 3. Avoid injuries. I'll put the detailed plan below, but I will do that later tonight. Only a dead legionary gives up.
  16. Hey, to everyone here. As the progress one I am trying to maintain the focus on things that I tried to do in the past but failed a see through to the end. One of those things is my health and focus on journey to become a better version of myself. With that being said I am ready to be more focused on this challenge than before. So here are my Quest to complete during the next 4 weeks: Fitness/Health Quest Only have dessert one per week. I have realized that over the past few years I have indulged to much at work and with friend. Which has lead me to not work out as much as I would like. Get back to working out. I started doing this before but life got in the way. But I would like to say no more. Limit the amount of fast food to traveling only/ limit myself on the menu This one will be one of the harder ones because: we have clients come in and provided us with lunch I work near a lot of these types of restaurants I also work long odd hours as the weather warms up Finally the level up life quest: To stop hitting the snooze button on the alarm when it is time to wake up. This one is specifically hard because it forces me not be a slow moving turtle in the morning and possibly make not in a hurry as much through life. If you have any advice on how tackle these I am always open to it.
  17. Back from a hiatus that was both from giving up and too much going on. (Rambly update in my Daily Battle Log.) Anyway -- I'm back - again! -- and I think I'm going to respawn everything, including over on my Academy profile. I just haven't been active in so long. On the bright side, having (re-)joined WeightWatchers, their new Freestyle program brings a lot of nutrition goals in line with the NF Levels. Other than nonfat yogurt being 0 Points, I think most of the 0-Point food list is at this point totally paleo. Anyway, my goal right now is to start getting things back on track (weight loss, fitness, finances, etc) and work on leveling up again.
  18. Hi all, The goal of this thread is to show myself and others that just because you have a family doesn’t mean you have to be unhappy with your fitness and how your clothes fit. I have some goals for myself in 2018 and if I meet all of them I get to spend some money on myself for something I wouldnt normally spend money on. I haven’t decided quite yet so I’ll keep quiet for now, but they are awesome! Here are my goals ~ run 5 miles without stopping(not on a treadmill) ~10 body weight pull-ups ~deadlift my body weight ~have my waist 30”or under (or a four pack) ~weigh less than 160 ~ hold a handstand for 1 min (no wall) looking forward to documenting this journey.
  19. Sooooo, this is kind of a reboot, well okay it's a complete reboot. I've been off the challenge boards for .... a long time (has it been a year? or even longer??) and I wish I could say I kept fit in the meanwhile but I didn't I did well in many other ways, got independant in my work and love it, even though it means temporarily less income. Deepened my meditation practice and love it, both in my work as well as personally. In consequence dropped a lot of stress, tension and short temper with kids, I guess my whole family loves that At the same time I got lazy though in terms of fitness. Budget cuts led to dropping the pole classes, I didn't kick myself to do any at home, started going to yoga classes again instead which are cheaper and closer by, but somehow didn't make it there regularly either (many excuses, but none really valid) and now I lost so much strength and gained so much weight back that I look a far cry from my profile pic So no more of this!! If I could change shape before, I can do it again! After all I am a fire dragon Will start slowly to make sure I have no excuses and build up over the coming challenges some more. What is really important to me is that fitness does not prioritize over work. Simply because work means income and as much freedom I have being self-employed and working from home, as tempting it is to procrastinate on anything that doesn't have a scheduled appointment and oooof I'm REALLY easy to fall for procrastination! So in the past whenever my fitness picked up, my work slowed down and right now I simply can't afford that. A good balance it will have to be. Ideally I'll shed some body abundance and gain some financial abundance instead Will still give it my best, of course, will just have to give my best on both work and fitness. You guys will hold me accountable, please shout at me when I slack and just ask me if I'm truly giving it my all. Thank youuuuuuuuu Here goes Shape Shifting Part 1 My motivation theme for this series of challenges (I might need more than one ) is the world of His Dark Materials by Philip Pullman. The people there have demons each which are like a part of their soul that lives in a separate body yet close to them all the time. The demon is usually in the shape of an animal and children's demons can shift from one animal shape to another quite often and easily. As they turn to teenagers the demons then settle on one shape which they will stay in for the rest of their lives. For the series of these challenges, I'd like to become as flexible, courageous, energetic and curious again as a child. So I will aim for three shapes of demon to have part of me turn into: Octopus - Strength If I feel a bit squishy around my middle, I might as well get strong squishy Octopus are awesome beasts though... strong, nimble and very adaptive. I'll have to build versatile strength for this one. Daily 10 Doing 10 chin ups from tip toe, 10 knee push ups (yes, that's how weak I've gotten ) and 10 knee tucks from hanging - every single day, no excuses 120 minutes of yoga / week Becoming not just strong but also nimble again, one session at a time. Yoga classes go over 90 minutes, so I have to go more than once or do some extra at home to achieve this. I know it will be so worth it! Caribou - Endurance This goal is mixing fitness and work, it's my "just keep going" goal as every step will get me lighter on my journey and closer to my work projects 10 000 steps per day counting with my fitbit over course of the day; working from home I get max 3000 - 4000 steps per day, in order to get the 10 000 steps in I have to go for about an hour walk, which will have the extra benefit of fresh air and temperature resilience, yay 30 minutes writing per day I've been asked by quite a few people now, if I can't write a book on meditation as they love my guided ones... and yeah I'd totally love to do that, have just never ventured out to actually do it. I get inspired and all enthusiastic and as soon as I sit down to write anything, all the doubts rush in and tell me I don't have anything worthwhile to say and the whole blablabla. The thing is I won't know if I have it in me or not, if I never write it! Have started writing notes and snippets over the last 18 months and now it's time to give it some more shape. It doesn't matter if I add more snippets in those 30 minutes or structure and assemble what is there already, as long as I spend the time focused undistracted on the project. Eagle - Farsight 45 minutes or more personal meditation per day, to detach and rise to larger perspective again; the goal is to surrender into the unlimited field of the loving intelligence that creates life and co-create from there. Venturing into unknown possibilities again and again until I dare do more of that in every day life as well. This practice varies from day to day in how well I can open up for it, but in general it makes me really happy, confident and inspired, plus I do feel a strong health benefit as well. Currently I use the meditations of Dr. Joe Dispenza, very cool stuff! Let's go conquer water, land and skies Happy challenging everyone and thanks for having me back
  20. Bows, hides amongst the new students...... slightly mortified by gi straining at the seams. Yep, another reboot attempt. Life has been fun lately, all good except for excessive consumption, and inadequate exercise. Yup, the ever expanding Lou_be_Lou needs to do some decreasing. More to the point is that I'm unfit enough for it to be affecting day to day living. Big reason for action = wanting to be fit enough and strong enough for music and life things. Plus, I'm feeling like a lapsed martial artist, and nope, I say no to lapsing. Goals for the challenge. 1) stay well (= avoid all of the gluten and most of the dairy, and pace myself with increased exercise) 2) decrease = moderate decrease in nutrient dense foods and increased veges. I will weigh less that 77.3 kg (that was tonight's shocking discovery at the gym..... BMI temporarily = 29, which is too close to obese for my liking [yes, I know BMI = bollocks, but I feel much better closer to the lower end of the overweight scale, so I'm using BMI = 29 as a wakeup call]) by the end of the challenge. 3) enjoy exercise (I'm not setting a fixed schedule here, just get my butt moving most days, options include: yoga (at home and in class); walking, including stairs at work, thus avoiding work lift roulette (the number of lift stalls with folk stuck in it is well into double digits, step away from the lift); running (treadmill or outdoors); kickboxing on a sunday night; jujitsu on a tuesday, possibly thursday; and at home kickboxing practise. But I am not to try to do all of that every week because that will mean crashing and burning and becoming ill. Yep, I'm attempting to learn from past mistakes. 4) play that bass. Six days a week. Yes, really. I've managed an ok unofficial day one (first yoga for a long time, felt challenging, plus bass practise), and an ok official day one (pre-work yoga, lunchtime walk, evening gym with a slow 5k on the treadmill, and pre-work bass). I just need to not do all of the things all of the time. Slow and steady. Bows, gi creaking in complaint, leaves dojo.
  21. HAPPY NEW YEAR PEACHES! It's back to basics for me this year. I need to be ACTIONABLE and ACCOUNTABLE. I know I know, that's what my GOALS are supposed to be. but it's not about them, this is about ME. I need a firm reboot and a hard reset and I need to get my head back into the game and out of the clouds and some other silly analogies etc etc etc. I have too many I WANT TO DO'S and not enough THIS IS WHAT I AM DOING, and I need to get back on to a plan before I can start to really attempt the millions of shiny that I want to chase. So, January is for resetting. Goal 1: 30 days of yoga My body is wrecked y'all. I mean, I'm not INJURED or anything - but I'm stiff and sore and I have twinges and I do yoga now and then and don't have the mobility and flexibility that I really want to do. So, I'm signing up for the 30-days of Yoga by Adriene on youtube, and I'm going to do it every day. * FYI potential yoga people doyogawithme also has some great challenges but the durations of classes is between 15 minutes and 75 minutes for them, and I really just don't have the time in the morning to do this. Goal 2: track food I haven't been tracking at all for ages! so, every day, track the things in loseit. EVERY DAY. just write it down! what's the big deal? Goal 3: push-up progressions This should be simpler than it is, apparently. 3x8 of push-up progressions. do them every day. there's a lot of push-up progression options out there. I'm at counter height, I'd like to move to chair height, and then a lower box or negatives. SIDE PARTY also, start to seriously look at things you want to do. * I mean, do I want to run? or am I just feeling lazy / it's 5 deg F outside right now? * what about weights? if I start weight lifting on tuesdays after tkd with my dojo owner, how can i fit more weights in? dust off the new rules of lifting for women? work on that at the same time? * what will my mornings look like next month? will I have time to keep doing the yoga? * what does my diet need to look like to get where I want to be? or at least, to get a little less holiday belly? * oh, did I want to try pole dancing classes at that place near my house? these are all complicated things that I don't know the answer to. THEY REQUIRE RUMINATION. Also in the interests of SUCCEEDING I declare a monday start. also, still doing the tae kwon do, etc. etc. etc.
  22. So, Moros is back with a Kiss challenge. Not this kind of KISS: More like this: I often sabotage my challenges by making them over complicated. So this one really has two parts: First - do what is already working each week. Next - add back in the other components that I want to do, one at a time, until they are solid habits again. Repeat Steps 1 & 2 until I have a balanced program again. Of course, some other person already mentioned this concept in a post: https://www.nerdfitness.com/blog/motivation-youre-doing-it-wrong/ Or, shown graphically: So, what's currently working is: My meditation practice Doing Yoga on Thursday Evenings and on Sundays I will re-start my morning workouts first, and then add more stuff on. Anything else is a bonus, until the morning workouts are stable. Stable is defined as 80% of the possible points for each part, averaged over the week. I will post, but that's in the "bonus" section for right now. Details below the spoiler:
  23. I suppose my signature says it all, doesn't it? For a TL;DR, I was losing weight and feeling great, then I wasn't, then I was hiding from the world, then I spent a lot of time with doctors, finding out that I have diabetes, MS, and at least one heart condition. FUN So I am rebooting and keeping it simple, going from a newbie's standpoint. I just want to re-establish healthy habits and get my brain back into the swing of things. Level One Challenge Eat a vegetable with one meal every day Complete the NF bodyweight workout at least 1x a week Pick up the house every morning, and do the dishes I think this is a great place to start. I'll see you in the forums.
  24. Greetings! Sassyfrassy here. You could call me the artist formerly known as roseofmay, kelliestrasza, and other monikers. It has been quite some time since I've participated in a challenge, but the amazing @shaar made sure to poke me to start the new year right. So, here I am to do just that! I'm starting off small since I'm getting back into things. regrowth - establishing & learning I'm going to get back into tracking my food intake on a daily basis. I'll be able to see what I'm eating, what I'm not eating, and assess my mood and feeling based on that. I noticed that when I eat something substantial for breakfast, I feel more awake and energetic. When I just have a cup of coffee and a piece of peanut butter bread (or something worse or JUST coffee), that doesn't last long at all. Gotta make sure I'm fueling the body properly so that I can get my metabolism working again. rejuvenation - yoga & stretching Along with the access to NerdFitness Yoga, I also received a whole SLEW of new yoga courses and what not online. I also have a new yoga mat. I really miss doing yoga and it really helped boost my energy, mood, and general disposition! restoration - self-care & self-worth I've really fallen off the wagon of taking care of myself. Sometimes I get in a "why do I need to do this?" frame of mind. I need to remember to do things for ME. Even if that's painting my nails or spending an hour reading, do it for me and no one else. SO OKAY. Let's do this!
  25. Hello Everybody - Back for another challenge. I chose to step out last challenge because of the big project I had at work. To make a long story short - I had to do in 11 days a project that took me six weeks last time. I got it done, but it wasn't pretty. I also spent the next few weeks recovery. I did some yoga, and some walking but that's about it. So, this challenge is about rebuilding the good habits I had going before the project. Details are below the fold:
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