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  1. Hey Doodlies, You know who you are. Are you not, or have you never been a doodlie, or do you not know what a doodlie is, I'm sorry, this thread is not for you. We have been on many adventures together. We have battled great evil and each other. We've been covered in batter, hit by smut and rolled around in shenanigans. But we've let our brother- and sisterhood slide. We've been neglecting the awesomeness we had together. I know, a lot of you are pressed for time. You've been hit by life, or are just working really hard on your personal goals. That's why I wanted to do a light challenge. I will give you a theme and an assignment every week, and you can respond when you've got the time. Nothing big. It can be posting a meme, an inspirational text or sharing pics of your pets/kids/plants. I'll post the first theme on Monday. Are you in?
  2. Hey there! No matter how many times I stumble around, I always find myself returning, so here I am, still attempting to figure out a rhythm for myself. I've taken a bit of time off-line to try out some things on my own. I've learned a few new things, and I believe I've gotten a solid idea of where I want my foundation to be. I know I've tried in the past to pave one and haven't had much success with lifting off it once it's there. However, I'm beginning to think that was due, in part, to being afraid to build on it, not trusting myself to keep the foundation, when I know that I'm more than capable of doing so. I also think I get stuck in my head too much; too much planning/analyzing/thinking, not enough doing (case in point: everything I post here). So here's to more actions and less head time; less time to doubt, to analyze & paralyze. My goal for this challenge is simple: drop my weight below the 200lb mark. I've been hovering between 210lb and 200lb for what seems like forever (hitting the 200lb mark was a bit of a rude awakening). I know what I need to do in order to get there, so this challenge is about making it happen in action, with all y'all crazy Rangers (and other friends ) to hold me accountable; when you get down to it, doing things for others is what drives me (doing these things for others, by proxy, gets them done for me). Here's how we're going to accomplish this goal: Hit my daily macro goals. Extra effort required during weekends. Walk 8-10k steps daily. Bring the Ranger companion whenever possible. Obligatory Ranger Companion photo: Attend regular Capoeira class weekly (2x per week, Monday & Wednesday). Be a more responsible adult (choose-your-own-adventure, see below). Choose Your Own Adventure (4th quest): Every week, I will choose one task (either from one group or both, provided two tasks are not overwhelming) from the provided list of adult tasks. I will do what I can within that week to complete the chosen task(s). If I complete it early, I will strike it out and pick another one to work on for the remainder of the week. If I do no complete it by the end of that week, then I will carry it over to the next week. I will set a minimum requirement of four completed tasks for this challenge. All right. Thread up. Time for action (afternoon walk) before I ramble on about this week's choose your own adult adventure decision. Yes, you guessed it! More weeks = more actions. I start TODAY. Goals rant (because I can't help rambling):
  3. This will be the first time (I recall) not taking a break during Week Zero. I'm rolling with the same basic habits that I was working on last challenge (and practically forgot to keep tracking). I've added a few more ways to gain bonus points, but they're not really required. Just some things I would like to work on once the basics get easier. Eat Well: Continue brown bagging lunches on work days. Bonus points for eating at home on the weekends and in the mornings. Sleep Well: Be in bed by 10:30pm. Bonus points for staying up after alarm in the mornings. Move Daily: Continue to attend regular Mon & Wed classes consistently. Bonus points for any extra training. Love Daily: Track all food and drinks (including water). Bonus points for any time spent on the KonMari list. EDIT: Goals edited for a bit more simplicity and focus. Also, it's kinda dumb, in my opinion, to focus on getting up at a specific time when you don't go to bed at a specific time first, to make sure you get enough sleep.
  4. I'm usually more on the ball when there are cosplay-related things at stake. Is it a bad thing that the act of pretending to be a (usually terrible) fictional character gives me greater motivation to be healthy than my own well-being does? Don't answer that. It turns out that my only successful challenge so far, the one from the newbie area where I needed the body of a God had similar cosplay motivations. I wanted to lose 10 lb of fat so that I would make a better Loki. This involved eating more fruits and veggies, and greatly limiting bread and beer. This made me sad, but I got some freaking results! And by "cutting beer" I really meant that I switched from beer to whisky. Those of you who've seen my tumblr (or know me in RL) are probably aware of my newest obsession: Jupiter Ascending. This movie was filled with action, cheesiness, amazing costumes, and The Mary Sue describes it in the following manner: "This movie is like if [The Matrix, Dune, Star Wars, and The Fifth Element] plus the music video for the Backstreet Boys’ “Larger Than Life†and the really weird parts of the Mass Effect trilogy all got really drunk at a party and had a massive orgy while H.P. Lovecraft filmed it." Epic, no? Unfortunately, the critics wrecked Jupiter Ascending before it even came out, and the movie was considered a failure as far as money goes. I bet it'll make enough money back by the end of the year to break even, but whatever. My obsession with this movie specifically centres on one glorious, twisted, entitled space asshole of a character: Balem Abrasax. I can haz money, power, and ripped abs? (Never fear, the Loki obsession has not gone away. I just can't wear the Loki cosplay for a while because of an upcoming surgery and associated looooong recovery time. My Loki game will end up much greater in a few months, though! A chest plate that will actually fit properly? Imagine that! I'll also be making an Agent of Asgard Loki costime for Animaritime this year. Fuck wearing several layers of leather in a summer heat wave.) Personality-wise, Balem will be much harder to roleplay than Loki, whose character pretty much came naturally to me. Both characters have some psycho in them, but Loki actually has a sense of humor and makes frequent use of snide remarks. Balem, on the other hand, is typically serious ALL. THE. TIME. Oh, and he whispers everything he says...when he's not hysterically rage-shouting, anyway. (Pic 1) (Pic 2) Top: calmly threatening someone. Bottom: FFFFFFFFFFFFFUUUUUUUUUUU EDIT: IT'S NOT LETTING ME USE GIFS AND I AM RAGE-SHOUTING RIGHT NOOOOOOOOOOOWWWW!!!!11!111 I am not very good at being serious, so I will need to get some practice with that before November. The hysterical rage-shouting I can definitely do well, because I do it all the time when 1) the internet is slow, 2) this video is not available in my country, 3) I get stuck behind a dumbfuck driver in traffic, and 4) I attempt to prepare an under-ripe avocado. The bottom line is that, besides wanting to become a wizard, I also seem to have a desire to become an evil space lord who wears awesome clothes. I'm not sure if this is a good thing or a bad thing. First came Darth Maul, then there was Loki, and now there's Balem. (There will eventually be a Ronan, but let's not get ahead of ourselves.) So, what will I be doing to overlordify myself over the course of the next six weeks? 1: Regeneration/rejuvenation! Because I'm vain. I've had a vanity-based challenge goal before, which I stuck to moderately well because priorities. Now I'm going to do it again, except better, and for a different reason: I want to be as healthy as possible due to an upcoming surgery so that I can hopefully heal better and faster. The rejuvenation aspect and associated good looks is merely a nice bonus. In Jupiter Ascending, the entitled take baths in a substance called RegenEX. One tube (seen below) is refined from about 100 people. If I can get my hands on a long, hexagonal bottle like this, I'm pretty sure that 4 parts vodka to 1 parts Hypnotiq will make a liquid with the same color. Unfortunately, I am 1) not an entitled or a royal being in real life (yet!) and 2) RegenEX doesn't exist in real life. Oh, and 3) the whole thing about RegenEX being made of people would probably not fly in real life, either. So I need to get a similar (but lesser, obviously) rejuvenation effect by using more mundane methods. 1.1: Cut down on the coffee. Pass/fail. I will have no more than one cup per day. For the few weeks after the surgery, I'll have no coffee at all (but may have green tea). Coffee interferes with collagen production, and apparently that's important during healing. 1.2: HYDRATE! Pass/fail. 3L of water per day, or more. Simple enough, right? Especially if there's less room for coffee. My addiction to having a drink in my hand should make this doable. 1.3: Tweak my diet, have one BIG-ASS SALAD every day. Pass/fail. This is like the vegetables quest I've been routinely failing at, but easier because there is no cooking involved. All I need to do is have ample amounts of lettuce and spinach. And herbs. I don't think I'll grow my own herbs, though, because I've tried that before and the cats ended up destroying all of them. As an aside, it was mentioned to me that the optimal diet for healing was a raw vegan diet. I have no problems with the raw part since it involves less effort, but the vegan part makes me a bit sad because I rather enjoy eating dead animal pieces. Hey, at least I'm not bathing in a pool filled with liquid refined from tens of thousands of people, right? The protein powder I normally use is labeled raw vegan, so that should work. It's also the elitist, pricey type of protein powder, which is good for two reasons. First, it fits well with the "I am going to cosplay an elitist jackass" theme. Second, the higher price ensures that I won't be over-indulging with it because I am not that much of a rich elite in real life. I also have to look ripped in order to fully complete the Balem Abrasax look, but that'll be tough since I won't be able to work out. Next challenge, fo' sho'! tl;dr version: EAT GOOD FOOD, BECAUSE SPACE LORDS DO NOT EAT TRASH. 2. I can business! Seriously, I know NOTHING about anything even remotely finance-related, or business-related. I hate being ignorant, especially when it comes to something like money. Money sort of makes the world go 'round these days, and not knowing anything about it seems counter-productive to, well, everything I want. How does this fit with the cosplay theme? Well, it turns out that Balem Abrasax is an epic businessman, or at least that's what the movie hints at near the beginning. Unfortunately, he seems to be more and more mentally unstable as the movie progresses, so we poor viewers don't actually get to witness his l33t busine55 sk1llz--although I suspect it involves a lot of coercion, harsh negociating, and threats. And probably murder. All fictional character shenanigans aside, though, I really do want to have more of a clue about how to deal with money in several aspects of life. Disclaimer: the Earth will not be harvested in the course of this challenge. 2.1: Basic financial literacy. Not graded. I was going to do a thing for this, but decided not to because I still have to cram for my thesis defense and I don't want to overburden myself. I signed up for am "Introduction to Finance" class on coursera. It only starts on June 1st, but I don't meet some of the pre-reqs (how do I economy? I can haz accounting? Derp? Very statistics!) so I'll have to read up on things. I will add these things here after I finish my current degree. The finance class is said to be pretty intense for an introductory course, but at least it won't involve a thesis. 2.2: Number cruncher! Pass/fail. This will involve Lumosity Raindrops. I know that Lumosity was a spectacular fail last time, but maybe if I focus on just ONE GAME (Raindrops) then maybe I can succeed. This isn't totally related to finance or business, but being able to work with numbers more efficiently certainly can't hurt. Being better at math might also help me get rid of the feeling that I'm a fucking idiot. Knowing more financial things and being better with numbers may result in me having more money in the future, and/or result in me obtaining money faster. Filthy rich space royals need to have money, otherwise they wouldn't be space royals. Life is a game, and the game is pay2win. I want to fucking win. And when I have a lot of money, I can pay someone else to prepare my vegetables for me 3. Mindfulness. Again. 3.1: Five minutes of mindfulness, every day. Pass/fail. I'll just keep this in my challenges until I stop failing at it. It's got to happen at some point. 3.2: Hand control. Not graded. Being able to look like an aloof, arrogant space lord while walking around on a convention floor is only going to be a side benefit of this. The main reason for controlling what I do with my hands is to keep my hands away from my face. I've tried to tackle this terrible habit in the past, and failed every freaking time. There are obviously some psychological factors at stake that I am completely unaware of, and it's a shitty habit I've been doing since I was in elementary school. Right NOW is the time to give breaking this habit another shot, though, for two reasons: - I may start to take hormone injections in the near future, which will increase the likelihood of me having shitty skin. It's like second puberty, and I fucking swear if I end up getting acne I'm going to hate my face so much... Having my hands on my face all the time will greatly increase the chance of me developing skin problems, and thus DO NOT WANT. I won't be able to cosplay anything with a half-red, pus-oozing, crater-filled face. - After the surgery I won't be able to raise my arms (or hands) much, so this will be an extra bonus that can help me succeed at not picking at my face this time around. I CAN DO THIS! Right. Hand control. While in the midst of enlightening research (read, while fucking around on Tumblr) I've stumbled upon these things called Mudras, which are basically like hand yoga and apparently there's benefits to doing this. I'm still rather clueless about it all, so I'll just paste a thing that came up when I typed "mudras" on tumblr: "HAND MUDRAS: Those familiar with reflexology know that by stimulating certain pressure points in your hands and feet, it is possible to revitalize and balance energy in different parts of your body; including your organs and glands. For instance, pressing a specific part of your thumb can relieve a headache. Massaging areas of your pinky finger can relax your neck and shoulders. Hand mudras work in a very similar fashion. The word “mudra†translates to seal orgesture. A hand mudra is both a symbolic and therapeutic gesture mainly performed with the fingers. By positioning our fingers in various postures, we can influence how energy is channeled inside of us. Think of it as opening an electrical circuit inside your body. Touching two fingers together can direct the flow of internal energy to where it’s needed and create healthy benefits and a mind/body balance. For more posts like these: http://yogamimi.tumblr.com" Goggle also showed me this web site for mudras. And then it showed me other sites with the same hand gestures and different effects that they're supposed to give and...??? I'll figure this out as I go along, but so far I've memorized the all the one-handed ones on the Kundalini site (the one with the link at the beginning of this paragraph). I'm not sure how much I buy into the part about the energy flow and purported benefits, but those will be an added bonus if they do happen to work. I don't have anything to lose by trying the mudras out, anyway. Also, if anyone wonders how this part of the challenge fits with the pretend-to-be-a-finctional-character and cosplay theme, see for yourself: I don't know if he's actually mudra'ing, but close enough. Won't I look foolish steepling my hands like an evil villain in real life, doing day-to-day activities? Nope! Because unless it's gym time, I hardly ever leave the computer's side and thus nobody will see me. Other activities involve driving, or watching TV at friends' places, in which case nobody pays attention to where my hands are anyway. I can be a dramatic evil villain in a stealthy manner. 3.3: Epic fingernails. Not graded. LOOK AT THE PERFECTLY DONE FINGERNAILS, and not at the Backstreet Boys-like hair disaster! Bonus quest: maintain long and perfect fingernails. This will deter me even further from face picking, mainly because picking at my face with pseudo-claws will probably cause damage and be a little painful. If I pick at my face with long nails, I'll have to clean my nails, too. Effort. Ugh! This isn't being graded because long and perfectly manicured fingernails aren't quite compatible with my workout and crafting habits, so it's inevitable that some of the nails will get smashed, chipped, or broken. I feel like I should have some kind of a conclusion paragraph, but I'm feeling lazy. I still managed to make an entire thread before the challenge started, though! If this keeps up, I might even get to making a spreadsheet before the challenge begins, too, so that I can actually keep track of my goals this time! To reiterate: 1.1 - Cut down on coffee 1.2 - Hydrate 1.3 - BIG-ASS SALAD 2.1 - Basic financial literacy 2.2 - Number cruncher 3.1 - Five minutes of mindfulness 3.2 - Hand control 3.3 - Epic fingernails Now, for the ones that are actually being graded: 1.1 - Cut down on coffee: 1.2 - Hydrate: 1.3 - BIG-ASS SALAD: 2.2 - Number cruncher: 3.1 - Five minutes of mindfulness: Re-writing this here is mainly to encourage further laziness, because then I can just copy/paste this entire list for update posts. I realize that I have several goals that aren't being graded, but it's kind of tough to grade something like hand control :\
  5. I've decided, like many others it seems, to take a short reprieve from the challenge format. Either I haven't been doing a good job of selecting SMART goals in the challenges or I just haven't been doing a good job motivating myself to care enough, so we're going to play it loosey goosey and try a daily diary format for a while. This is my free-for-all, spaghetti on the wall diary. Watch for falling rambles. I intend on faithfully reporting my daily workouts and food intake with a sprinkle of my general musings on health. I'm also starting a serious cut with a somewhat high deficit because attempting to do a low deficit, gradual cut has given me six weeks of absolutely nothing, despite a number of tweaks. So we're gonna go hard or go home with a focus on hitting protein requirements, eating a fuckton of vegetables, and keeping a sharp deficit most days of the week. Measurements will be reported here as well. Luckily, it's super easy to eat a ton of vegetables when you get to pick up a box of beauties like these every week: <3 vegetables I'm also unsure of what I want my focus to be these days, so maybe a battle log will help me refine my thoughts and allow me to play around with things like running, climbing, and hiking while also finding balance with my lifting and gymnastics goals. It's hard to be interested in so many things and not very good at any of themmm. Starting Stats Height: 5'6" Weight: 150.8 lb Neck: 13.5" Waist (natural): 28.5" Waist (at belly button): 33" Hips: 37.5" Right thigh: 23.35" Right calf: 15" All of these measurements are up significantly from my very first measurements last September. I'd love to get my waist down to my Sept 1, 2013 measurements by Sept 1, 2014, but we'll see how feasible that is. Other Sites/Logs Fitocracy - https://www.fitocracy.com/profile/julipher/ Myfitnesspal - http://www.myfitnesspal.com/food/diary/raptronx Instagram - http://instagram.com/jujiboos
  6. Rob stood at the edge of a bluff, overlooking a forested valley. Set in the side of the cliffs on the other side of the valley from him, Rob could see a cave. If the information all those Bothans died for was correct, Rob should find Jim inside the cave. If the information all those Bothans died for was correct, the 10 miles that separated him from that cave were treacherous, and filled with traps. He ran when he could. Large, deep trenches had been dug into the valley floor. The trenches were the work of magic, for only the most powerful magics could have scarred a network of canyons. At times he could jump across the trenches, other times he catapulted from swinging vines to cross the canyons. The journey was difficult, but in time, Rob had traversed the valley and its network of canyons. Crouching behind thick shrubs, Rob could make out the entrance to the cave and he could see that it was guarded. Four powerfully built, but lightly armoured guards stood next to the entrance, two on each side. There was no way he could sneak around or behind the guards, a direct frontal assault was the only thing possible. I wish I had a bow and arrow… he thought. With a sigh, he stepped out from behind the bush and made his way towards the guards. When Rob was about 20 feet away, two guards walked out to meet him. Without word, they attacked. Rob ducked and weaved between blows from their heavy maces. His shield took a pounding while he swung his sword, leaving a red gash in the belly of one of the guards. The injury created a brief window that allowed Rob a chance to step back. It wasn’t long before the guard closed the distance with a furious bellow and he charged. Rob dodged, and just as he was about to bring his sword around, a loud voice boomed: "IT IS FINISHED!" All four guards vanished instantly. Confused and wary, Rob walked into the cave. It was dark, except for a flickering light in the distance. Rob ran. As he got closer, he could see the silhouette of a person slumped on the ground next to the fire. He ran faster, and soon reached the man he assumed was Jungle Jim. He was still breathing, but only barely. “Who….†Jim wheezed, “….are….. you…†he finished slowly. “Never…mind. No…. time… Here…. Take…†and lifted out his hand. Rob reached out his palm to take what it was that Jim wanted to give him, but as he raised his hand, Jim died. Rob quickly grabbed Jim’s hand before it hit the ground. Then there was pain and only dark. In the darkness there was a voice: “Warrior, in death, I gave you my life and all its experiences. The power I held is now yours. Go! You must head to the Island of Light and finish what I started…†Eventually Rob awoke and thought about what Jim’s voice had said. He could make neither heads nor tails of it. He had never heard of the Island of Light and if he did have Jim’s life and all it’s experiences, they still didn’t shed any light on what he needed to finish. One thing he did note, however, is that he felt stronger than he did before. Faster as well. He even felt bigger. Rob was sure that something had happened to him when he touched Jim’s hand, and he knew that he needed to figure out how to use the power Jim had given him – or even what it was. One thing he did know is that his failure to make it here on time had probably cost Jim his life. He wasn’t going to let Jim down again and Rob resolved to figure out what it was that Jim had started and finish it. Or die trying. His best bet for figuring things out was to go back to Jim’s gym and talk to Jim’s guards, so he wasted no time and headed back immediately.
  7. Before we begin this challenge's adventures, allow me to share a picture to show you where I'm at right now: Ughhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh.
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