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  1. Try to be a little bit better than yesterday. Pick your own version of 'better;' stronger, fitter, healthier, disciplined, able, educated, dependable. Whatever floats your boat. I'm going with disciplined and living in today, each day. I think. At least that's today's feeling. I've had a really good week of sticking to the eating plan I made for myself because I decided I was disciplined enough to do so, not because it was the right thing or the smart thing or I should do it. It seemed to work for me, so I'll try again. Living in today is about not letting the difficult things outside of me overwhelm my thoughts so that I forgot about being in today. I had really good luck with being surprised by something every day last summer and I'm going to reach for that again. Otherwise, it's the usual goals of fitness, diet, limited alcohol, and personal growth.
  2. I am more than ready to get back into the swing of things... I can only relax so long before I get bored of it. When I start looking around the place and trying to figure out how difficult it'd be to paint the walls in the dead of winter, and whether or not I'm really so terrible at sewing that I can't patch all the older pieces of bedding (for the record: Yes, I am. In home ec they banned me from using the sewing machines after the third time I accidentally sewed my fingers to my project - then a few years later when working at a living in history museum, they had a rule to give me any craft project except for quilting. My lack of talent for needlework is spectacular) it's time to get back. Two more days until I go back to work. Today is laundry and errands, tomorrow I will probably devote to some of the chores I don't do as often as I'd like because once I start cleaning I have a hard time stopping until everything is to my satisfaction... and I was raised a base brat so "my satisfaction" is perfection, and I'm a little too black and white in my thinking on the cleaning front. I have a bad habit of holding off until I can be perfect because I was raised to think if you're not going to do a job "right" (read: perfectly), don't do it at all. The principle is to strive for excellence in all things. In practice it looks a whole lot like me not cleaning at all and leaving too much on my partner's plate unless I have a whole day to sink into cleaning everything with doesn't come along often and tending to get ridiculously, irrationally irritated/anxious if I start cleaning and have to leave it stop. This is not fair, not healthy and not a rational fear - I'm in my own damn place now, it's not like anyone's going to breathe fire at me if I only clean the stove instead of the entire goddamn place top to bottom. So I am going to face it. I just hope my partner can deal with me being as prickly as a briar patch for the next few weeks until I manage to show the lizard brain the sky will not in fact fall if I only clean one thing instead of all the things. Also picking this keeps my unofficial pattern of 1 mental goal (facing my pefectionsim fears), 1 physical challenge (work out 30min every morning), 1 lifestyle habit goal (wake up on time, no snooze, no excuses). Anyway, I'm also more than ready to get back into exercise. Well, my body is. My lungs disagree. My folks have a farm. I am allergic to hay, horses, dogs and cats, among other things. So my lungs get progressively more wheezy and less exercise tolerant the longer I visit for. Each year my lungs seem to get more and more tetchy about it - sooner or later I'm going to need to start finding a hotel to stay at so I can sleep somewhere that doesn't make me cough. Which has, in turn, royally messed up my sleep schedule. So today I refill my asthma meds and start sick plan to get my asthma sorted and then my challenge this month is all about self discipline and getting myself moving even when I don't wanna. Like mornings. I hate mornings. However, in the past when I've been able to get my arse in gear to move early in the morning I genuinely do have a better energy level and mood all day. So my challenge is going to be one of consistency and self-discipline this month. Get up on time. 6AM during the week. No excuses. If I can do it when I need to for work trips, I can do it at home. Week 1: M ☒ T ☒ W ☒ Th ☐ F ☐ Week 2: M ☐ T ☐ W ☐ Th ☐ F ☐ Week 3: M ☐ T ☐ W ☐ Th ☐ F ☐ Week 4: M ☐ T ☐ W ☐ Th ☐ F ☐ 8 AM at the latest on weekends Week 1: Sat ☐ Sun ☐ Week 2: Sat ☐ Sun ☐ Week 3: Sat ☐ Sun ☐ Week 4: Sat ☐ Sun ☐ Move for at least 30 minutes each morning Strength W/F/Sat Stretch T/Th Cardio Sunday - run at the track Recovery Monday - walking or something Tracking: Week 1: M ☒ T ☒ W ☒ Th ☒ F ☐ Sat ☐ Sun ☐ Week 2: M ☐ T ☐ W ☐ Th ☐ F ☐ Sat ☐ Sun ☐ Week 3: M ☐ T ☐ W ☐ Th ☐ F ☐ Sat ☐ Sun ☐ Week 4: M ☐ T ☐ W ☐ Th ☐ F ☐ Sat ☐ Sun ☐ Perfect is the enemy of getting shit done. One extra "clean up" task per day. Doesn't matter what. Pick one thing and do it, and only it. Week 1: M ☒ T ☒ W ☐ Th ☒ F ☐ Sat ☐ Sun ☐ Week 2: M ☐ T ☐ W ☐ Th ☐ F ☐ Sat ☐ Sun ☐ Week 3: M ☐ T ☐ W ☐ Th ☐ F ☐ Sat ☐ Sun ☐ Week 4: M ☐ T ☐ W ☐ Th ☐ F ☐ Sat ☐ Sun ☐
  3. Slow down. Breathe. Take your time. Use discipline to make that time. While I succeeded the last challenge, I did so flying through it without a minute to reflect upon my process, my goals, my achievements. I was also never able to check in here because of how busy my days were. I can't say I was stressed, but I regret not making time to check in with the people supporting me here and my friends in real life. I also found myself falling into the old pattern again of not being able to sustain routines. Mostly because as I added building stones to my fitness, these became more and more complicated/ Then came the question of - I have a knee routine, but if my current daily challenge also includes a leg routine, do I do both? The solution then, was to sit down, break down my goals into even smaller pieces, until I could determine the single elements that were important to me, and from there, build a new challenge. I also want to make my life goals my priority over fitness, meaning that I won't add anything to my physical practice this month. I will just work on solidifying existing habits. Fitness Goal: Make fitness an integral part of my daily life to ensure better health and well-being. Goal 1: Morning routine: Wake up at 6h30 Meditate 5 Minute Mobility Drills 5 Minute Balancing Practice Intermediate Knee Routine + 1 of the following: Strength, Cardio, Yoga Do not start any daily task until scheduled. Use any leftover time for yourself. Goal 2: Evening routine: + 1 of the following: Foundation Work, Yoga Intermediate Knee Routine 30 Day Meditation Challenge Go to bed by 22h30 Goal 3: Lunch Break: +1 of the following: Walk, Foundation Work Life goal: Master self-discipline without neglecting the people I love Goal 1: Battling the Monkey Level 2 Goal 2: Do not isolate yourself Update Daily Log Check into challenge forums once a week Call home once a week Goal 3: Walk towards success Work on main project daily Apply to at least five internships and jobs Goal 4: Leisure One evening per week will be dedicated to reading only Sunday is a rest day.
  4. “Don’t get your hopes up yet.†That was how Erik started this morning. He was holding a brown folder. An official looking brown folder. Didn’t he know that being told not to get your hopes up did just the opposite? It’s just like someone telling you, “Don’t think about elephants.†What’s the only thing you’re thinking about right now? Elephants. The folder contained a mission. A real mission. Not training. “It’s not your official deployment. Not yet. We still have several more months of training before you’re ready for that. It’s a short-term scouting mission. We’re sending you to a potential deployment location to get the lay of the land. It’s just reconnaissance. Your main job is to lay low, and gather as much info as you can in the next week.†He handed me the folder and I was so eager to open it and study every detail, that I almost missed him continuing as he sat down across from me, “You’re transitioning into a new phase here, HN. You’re going to be losing the structure you’ve come accustomed to on base. You’ll have to have your own self-discipline. You’ll have to start spending time centering yourself for missions, to keep on task. I’m giving you only two assignments for this training period, as you’re going to have to start training your weak areas on your own. Once you’re deployed, that’s not the end. It’s just the beginning. You’ll have to keep improving whenever you find a weak spot. Take a look at your mission folder. There’s a digisheet in the back that has your extra training assignments. You’ll start working on them after breakfast.†He abruptly got up and and left me to my cheese and strawberries. Or at least I thought he did. He paused behind my chair for a short moment. “You’re doing well, HN. Don’t sell yourself short. You can do this, you have to know that. Because it only gets harder from here.†Habit goal: Self-Discipline Establish an energizing morning routine 1. Get out of bed without snoozing 2. Do gorilla workout Why it's a challenge: have I mentioned how much I hate mornings? Why I want to do it anyway: I hate mornings. This should change. Also, junk gets in the way for workouts if I don't get them in at the start of the day. I want to work my way towards a serious workout in the morning. My daily 16 was a start, but I'm getting bored of those exercises, and I didn't like a lot of them anyway. So I end up skippig it often. I enjoy the gorilla workouts a lot, and they are quick. And leave me much sorer than my daily 16 ever did. Once again, two points per day. Starting at 84 points: 70-84 = a 60-70= b 50-60= c <50= f Using lift app to keep track, so I can easially look at my stats and not miss something. + 2 CON, + 3 STR Endurance goal: Training assignment number 1: Improve that 3 mile time. Still 5k. This time on a sliding scale. Sub 30 = a Sub 32 = b Sub 34 = c Anything else = f +3 STA Skill goal: Training assignment number 2: Learn to dance Solo swing dance Why it's a challenge: I have terrible, terrible proprioception and coordination. Not to mention swing is generally a two-person gig. Why I want to do it anyway: I love love love swing music. When I hear it I feel like this: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rj125Azt5hA I can't contain myself. There is no hope of me sitting still. Why solo swing you say? Well cuz I don't have a fella. I go to a lot of parties where there is swing dancing, and there are lots of couples, and anyone who's not, doesn't know how to swing and thus won't dance with me to those songs (it's seems that only couples ever bother to learn to dance?). My brother and I used to swing dance something fierce. We are sort of estranged at the moment, and not having that built-in dancing buddy makes me miss him a lot at these dances. Just doing triple step by myself back and forth looks dumb and is boring. Therefore, I want to learn a routine (or repertoire of moves to mix and match) of intentionally solo swing dancing to jive to when these songs come up. Ideally I'd like to learn six new moves, one for each week. 6 = a 5 = b 4 = c <4 = f +2 DEX, +3 CHA Life goal: Centering myself to keep on task Learn to enjoy alone time. Accumulate 1 hour per week of quality alone time. Why it's a challenge; I am an extremely extroverted person. I hate being alone. being alone for too long makes me exhausted and depressed (characteristic of extroverts). This has freaked me out so much that I really avoid being alone at ALL. I tend to associate inrospection with introversion, and therefore with anger and depression (becuase when I am angry or depressed i don't want to interact with anyone.) Why I want to do it anyway: some alone time is necessary, to think and collect my thoughts, center myself, and come up with new ideas. Introspection is important, to develop who I am as a person and process new life experiences. It's gotten to a point that if I want to go do something (a hike, or bouldering, or seeing a movie) and no one is available that night, I won't even go. Guess what? I'm still alone that night. I'm just alone and bored. I want to start doing these things alone and enjoying being alone, not viewing it as that sludgey in-between time I have to slosh through between human interactions. So I'm going to accumulate one hour per week in quality alone time (ie watching tv, cleaning the house, working alone doesn't count. I'd be too distracted to pay attention to being alone) Six hours throughout challenge = a 5 hours = b 4 hours = c <4 = f + 3 WIS I'm also going to be doing two side challenges, one for the Parkour Posse PVP [improving my pull ups] and the other is a water fast with Croman Red in march [stay tuned for interesting RP writing centered around this.]. So starting stats: Weight: 171 Height: 5'11" <glad this has been basically the same. Chest: 39 Waist: 33 Hips: 40 Max pull ups: 2 Alright, let's do this thing.
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