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This battle log will not be daily. But I would like to leave something of my progress behind, just in case someone like me comes along and needs that extra push or second wind. Starsapart was that person for me, and I'd like to be there for someone else! First things first...or perhaps second things second, I am not at my goal. Not by a long shot. At this point in time, I am a novice, just beginning to count the fruits of her labor. I am into my second real 6 week challenge--not including my novice training. And I have told myself, I will give nerdfitness 7 challenges to astound me. But at this point in my journey, I feel like I can offer some words of encouragement to the me from four months ago and her compatriots. 1) Scales are the Devil's work. Abandon hope all yee who approach. The End of Overeating by Dr. David Kessler is worth it's weight in gold. It helped develop my distaste for junk food in a way that spoke to the intellectual in me. Not that I ate badly at all, mind you. Perhaps at my worst, as a child. But if I learned anything in college it was how to eat and eat well. Still, Dr. Kessler's work ended any lingering temptation fast food represented (now a freshly made burger and properly made chips? Nothing wrong with real food my dears). He also revealed to me my triggers. We all have them, even if we are not aware. Triggers that sabotage our efforts, induce us to eat or feel or stress. I had a few I could point out immediately, but the most important one is the scale. The scale was a trigger for me. Even when the number made me happy! I immediately switched to body measurements with a tape. 2) Captain Steve is right, cardio is pointless This isn't to disparage those who are dedicated to it. Cardio does have a time and place. But the benefit you get from cardio, can easily be matched and over come by an intense bodyweight workout with a cardio element. Now I'm not saying HIIT--that word scares me and might scare you--but I have had much more sustainable (not to mention quicker) results swinging a kettlebell or doing jump squats as part of my routine. For those of you in the middle of C25K or Zombies Run!, don't stop. That's building a habit of discipline in you. And showing you how to do something you thought impossible just a few weeks ago. Finish it out. 3) My Fitness Pal will save your life It took me a while to get over my hangups about measuring my food on myfitnesspal. But if I can attribute anything to my success, it is my adoption of this. Using my fitness pal has made the process of weight/inches loss a science, rather than magic. Science is predictable. You can anticipate it. I promise you: If you use this tool, this FREE tool and take up an exercise regimen, you will lose fat, weight, inches etc. Give it one 6 week challenge and if you haven't budged a pound or an inch/cm, you can come find me and punch me in the face. Secondly, buy a food scale--this will make tracking on myfitnesspal literally a child's errand. And finally, my fitness pal has a recipie import feature. If you have a smartphone and you are browsing a lovely website with lovely food, you can share that recipe to myfitnesspal and it will tell you how many calories per serving that lovely food has. If you switch through recipes that you have saved on myfitnesspal and keep under the calorie limit? Fat will flee. 4) Don't forget to stretch and walk I barely have time to stretch. In my first 6WC with the Assassins, I stretched maybe twice. But those two times, especially when I went out for a walk afterwards, I felt amazing. Now, in this challenge, I am working out everyday. I have EVEN LESS time and I am still stretching everyday (I'm working on the walking part). Give yourself 5 minutes. While watching TV. You can time yourself. And if you want to stop after 5, you can. If you don't--which is more likely--then you've just made time to stretch. See how that works? 5) "Don't hate your body. It's just trying to keep you alive" Maaya, or starsapart--a very wise woman--told me these words in my proverbial darkest before dawn moment. If you are healthy, and that is a relative term, if your body is not actively and seriously unwell. If like me, being overweight is the one thing it seems to be doing wrong, then don't hate you body. The difficulty your body is having shedding weight and inches comes from a survival instinct. It's not your body's fault. Your body isn't a malicious being trying to make your life a misery. So be kind to yourself. And then teach your body to thrive. So why Sabriel? Why the Abhorsen saga as the inspiration for my battle log? Well the newly leased warrior in me would say it is because I put the dead down. The dead being dead weight. That I have taken up the fishscale armour, silver key dusted halberd and bell bandolier of my office to hide the tears fat sheds as it wrung from my body (anyone see what I did there?). But in all honesty, and we can be honest here can we not my dears? In all honesty, this is not just a journey to put down fat. I'm putting to rest everything that ever went bump in the nights of my tearful youth, any silly insecurity I ever had, any belief that I can't. I may be the most ignorant Abhorsen in centuries (and pretty old to be starting at 25), but blood is blood and the Charter is the charter. And this Book of the Dead? I hope it will serve as a woot guide for the like minded. If I can do it, anyone can. And that's just me being honest. Does the walker chose the path or the path chose the walker?