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  1. Look here for last challenge -> it pretty well describes what I am up against. The TLDR version, Life is hard. My mom needs a ton of care, and expects it with little regard for anything else and is not the nicest of people on a good day. Work is insane since its this time of year. Add in work drama that is “My perception” and I have almost no spoons left most days when it comes to lunch, but I can’t give in to the lack of spoons since too many people need me. I AM TIRED. I am overwhelmed more days than not, and I can’t just throw up my hands and hide in a blanket fort. It would only get worse instead of better. Most days, I Just want to curl up and hide, and it’s been getting worse. So I keep doing things for everyone else, but myself has been last so much I forget to care for me. I need some sort of control over my life. Control that is stripped from me more days that not. I need stability that is taken when I barely know what things will be like when I get off work. Mom has a ton of Dr Appointments this month that will GREATLY affect her moods. I also think there’s dementia starting in, so I cannot just walk away. It would only be worse later. One more fun thing. Starting in a few weeks, Hubby will be working 2nd shift for at least a month, maybe longer. This means all the things he is currently helping with will NOT be an option and I will become solo parent. Mom is aware but doesn’t seem to care. So I am back to working on boxes. I am trying to not give up and up in the wrong path because I took care of everyone else. I am trying to earn more energy by doing more. Mostly, I am trying to just feel like I have some control over something. But most days, I just need told I am not failing at all of this. I am not ruining my kids, I am not a sucky daughter (I get told that enough that I am a horrible daughter) and that It is going to be okay. So feel free to stick around if you have the spoons to hear all the negativity and my new attempts to remember the good. But know, there may be more failures here than wins. Big goal is to stop missing more than 1 or 2 days at a time and not miss weeks at a time. Boxes are below. I am not doing them all, just enough to feel like I am in control and more than just Mom’s caregiver and maybe JUST MAYBE working towards that person I want to be. Someone who will be able to care for themselves at 65. Goal Value Description Strength 1 Calf raises 1 Squats 17 1 Wall Sit (sec) 1 Side kicks Do 3 1 Leg lifts 3 1 Reverse sit ups 1 sit ups 1 Knee to Elbows 1 raised Arm circles 1 Torso Twists 1 Bicep extenstions 1 Table plank 1 Bicep curls with weights (3 lb) 1 Backward Leg Raises 1 Step ups 1 Side lunges 1 Desk push ups Flexibility 1 Wrist Extension Stretch 1 Wrist Flexion Stretch 21 1 Upward dog/Child pose 1 Meditating Groot 1 Lord of the dance Yoga (ankle above head) 1 Lower back stretch (One leg across body) 1 Chair Pose 1 Butterfly 1 Tricep stretch 1 wall stand 1 Bridge 1 Calf stretch Do 4 1 Ballet/toe Touch 1 Cresent Moon pose 4.00 1 Sitting Fix/Shoulder stretch 1 Warrior 1 1 Ankle Circles 1 Warrior 3 (Eagle bird thing) 1 Quad stretch 1 Side stretch 1 Forward bend Life and Family 1 Floss in morning 1 NF status update 1 NF reply one other thread 1 Take Calcium in AM 1 clean out elderberries 1 Brush Yappy dog 1 2 things for mom a day 1 Check Dad's email 31 1 Spend time with Agents 1 Pull weeds 1 Harvest garden 1 Walk garden once a day 1 Text/Talk to one family member a day (Chosen or Blood) 1 Water garden 1 Read a book 1 Soak up the sun 1 Plan 1 Nightly downtime 1 Be in bed by 10:30 1 Put lotion on legs 1 Check ordering account 1 Floss after work Do 7 1 Floss before bed 1 Walk across beam once a day 1 Water 1 inside plant 1 Take Bloodpressure 1 Sew on 1 badge for Eldest 7 1 One good thing 1 Check Yappy Dogs night water bowl 1 Give Agent K9 5 minutes playtime 1 Play with Cats Fight Chaos 1 Pennisula/Island Clean all these daily 1 Table / Half wall 14 1 Desk 1 Computer room ottoman 1 Bathroom up 1 Clean off file cabinet Do 3 1 Bathroom down 3 1 Clean off door to basement 1 Grandpa's table 1 Clean off Stairs and landing 1 Clean off tall dresser 1 Clean off nightstands 1 Clean off Dresser 1 Counter over dishwasher At least 5 minutes per room (at least one) 1 Garage 1 Dust one surface 1 Computer room 13 1 Basement 1 Random organizing project Do 2 1 Pick up one furtumbleweed a day 1 empty out car daily 1 clean our bathtub 1 Sort Produce on counter 1 Wash window or mirror 2 1 Clean 2 papers out of paper organizer 1 File 1 thing a day 1 Purge 1 thing a day Walking 1 Walk 10000 steps 8 1 Walk 15 minutes a day 1 Walk 10 minutes at lunch 1 Walk 5 minutes after dinner 1 Walk 5 minutes in morning do 2 1 Take Agent K9 for a walk 2 1 7 hours with 250 steps 1 Walk to Mordor Fuel 1 No eating after dinner 17 1 No stupid sugar 1 Track breakfast 1 Track Second breakfast do 4 1 Track Elevensies 1 Track lunch 1 Track Dinner 1 Track Supper 1 Eat A Salad 1 Take Probiotic 4 1 < 3 bottles of tea 1 Eat Dates Daily 1 Eat dried Apricots 1 Eat Breakfast 1 Eat Lunch 1 120 oz of water 1 Record sugar in G Total Points Possible 121 Did I complete 5 minutes in room Total points for day 25.00
  2. Sooo I fell off the face of the Earth last week because surprise! Roofing. Which is to say, I found out midday Friday our roofers were going to be around to replace the roof Monday. Roofing is done but not without discovering a family friend hired to insulate the roof 5 years ago snowed us and pocketed the cash, and discovering the leaky bastard skylight did a number on the roofing boards and a bunch needed replacing. And now I am out an additional 5.2K beyond budget (but like for 1, I can't not have a safe roof and the insulation will pay for itself in 2 years). Bastard skylight is gone and good friggin riddance to it (the previous owner was a damn fool to think a skylight is a good idea in a climate that can swing between -40 and +40C in a single year. There's not a sealant on this Earth that can tolerate that. Buuut I have had a LOT of stress in the past few months and am feeling rather like a bit of metal that's been bent back and forth a bunch. I am feeling cranky and rigid and brittle and argumentative. Too much strain has built up and I need to basically take some time to rest, rebuild & repair my brain. On the upside! I am nearing the 30lbs lost since Xmas benchmark. Challenge this time is to embrace opportunity to de-stress. I am not sure what it's going to look like (aside from defending my vacation in July jealously), but I will spend a few days figuring it out to start.
  3. Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts.” While this quote is widely attributed to Winston Churchill, there's some who argue it's true source. I'm off topic, please pay no heed to my ramblings. It's easy for me to lose track sometimes... Ok, ok all the time. I've been on this site for sometime. During that time I've never followed through any of my side quests to complete my end game quest. It's not entirely uncommon for me to begin anything and sprint right into the field of battle, if you will, and for some time I will excel, push through the gruel and sweat and then I'll lose that initial momentum. This is so true to the point, I really feel that at this point...it's almost damned near inevitable that is what I will do in anything I do. This isn't where I pictured myself at thirty-two years old. I'm not trying to be pessimistic, throw a pity party or be ungrateful for my many, many blessings in my life the Gods have given me. As such, there are many things in my life that I am the one responsible for the fruits they bare. I lost track again.. I think, em, maybe not? I'm thirty-two, overweight, overcome with stress, depression (But wait, there's more!) and anxiety whilst being generally unhappy with where I am in life. I adore my beautiful fiancee, our handsome wee lad and even our aggravating but sweet Shorkie, Gypsy...it's everything else in my life I'm unhappy with and these things are and have been bleeding into those wondrous blessings that is my family. Now that I've either got your attention or lost it (The latter is irrelevant, moving on ha), my name is Drew, and my nickname is Redbeard. Besides being thirty-two and overweight, I'm a gamer, an author, an oughta-be musician and last but most certainly not least a follower of the Anglo-Saxon/Nordic Heathenry and Asatru faith. I also am rather interested in many other beliefs, pantheon's, mythos and Core Shamanism as well those exclusively not separate to their parent faiths. This is my time, I'm nearly middle aged according to the general consensus, and if I don't change these negative things I dislike about myself, I may never be able to.
  4. The last couple of challenges I've been working on my relationship to food. I've stopped binge eating/restrictive eating completely with the help of some awesome rebels in the Intuitive Eating accountability group <4 The last step of Intuitive Eating is "Gentle nutrition". Which basically means: eat like a normal human who cares for their health :p There are some more things that I want to be working on this year, but this time I'm not going to try to do them all at once. As many of you know, I love watching YouTube, and one of my favorite youtubers posted a video yesterday about how to make your goals stick. (Video embedded in the spoiler if you're interested) So this year I'm going to create one habit each challenge. To guide me, I'll use the "Four pilars of health" namely: Stress, Sleep, Nutrition and Fitness Goals to reduce stress in my life: Mediation, walking, dancing, reading, todo lists, yoga Goals to get good quality sleep: go to bed on time Goals for gentle nutrition: Eat in a way that makes me feel good, like: implementing intermittent fasting, eat nutrient dense foods, find new recipes to try Goals for fitness: Strength training, dancing, yoga (Challenge dates copied from Spezzies post) Challenge 1: January 7 to February 3 Stress: meditate every day Duration: at least 5 minutes When: When the kids went to school, or after brushing my teeth when the kids don't have school Challenge 2: February 11 to March 10 Fitness: 2 strength training sessions each week Duration: As long as it takes to perform the workout When: to be determined Challenge 3: March 18 to April 14 Nutrition: Intermittent fasting. I'm thinking 3 18 hour fasts or one 24 hour fast a week. Or mix those two and see what works best for me. Challenge 4: April 22 to May 19 Sleep: Screens off before 21:30 When: Every night except Friday and Saturday Challenge 5: May 27 to June 23 Stress: Do yoga When: twice a week Duration: at least 15 minutes Challenge 6: July 1 to July 28 Fitness: Step it up: get an average of 10,000 steps in a day. SUMMER BREAK (2 weeks between challenges) Re-evaluate the challenges I set out for myself for the rest of the year Challenge 7: August 12 to September 8 (Zero week will begin August 5) Challenge 8: September 16 to October 13 Nutrition: focus on nutrient dense foods. I won't eliminate any foods, but the majority has to be nutrient dense. Challenge 9: October 21 to November 17 Sleep: Be in bed before 22:00 on weekdays Challenge 10: November 25 to December 29 (5 week holiday challenge) Stress: Read every day in an actual, physical fiction book Duration: at least 5 minutes
  5. Blessed be the Fruit. I am back! I need some motivation with current life goals. So of course I turn to my NerdFam<3 This summer has been crazy for me with traveling and having Jamison (our 14mo half son) every other week. But we are in a groove now and I am ready to start adding some things that I need and miss back into my routine. The Ranger Guild being 1st one my mind! I miss ya'll. I have a new guilty pleasure. And I think @Wolfpool has mentioned it before on his thread. I am addicted to The Handmaid's Tale And since the 2nd season just ended with a HUGE cliff hanger! It will be the theme of my challenge to try and get through till the next season. So here is a quick rundown if you are not familiar with the show- So now that you are caught up here we go! Handmaid- Ofwolf This challenge is centered around having a baby. Much like the show. Disclaimer- There will be a lot of reproductive talk and the ceremony As some of you may know me and Wolf are trying to conceive. We actually have been trying to have a baby for basically over a year. We have succeeded twice but the pregnancies ended tragically. We lost our daughter Violet at 23 weeks, born sleeping, And then experienced loss again right after that at 14weeks with another baby born sleeping(We did not know the sex of this baby but I'm confident it was a boy) that baby we named Sammy. All this to say the road to a baby has been long and hard for us. Now...We do not believe we have any health issues that are preventing us from having a healthy baby. We have not had problems conceiving prior given our 4 healthy children. The losses were all explained to us as "Bad luck". So here we are on this journey (Still) to have a healthy baby. We are taking our health more seriously then we ever have on this TTC journey. If you want some more details here is a video on our YouTube channel talking about this new journey Yes I also vlog! I love it. I do better talking then typing. So you will see a lot of videos. Being a "handmaid" I need to be in the best baby making health possible. Drinking more water and walking at least a mile everyday is this goal. Goal- Drink at least 90oz water daily Walk at least 1mile a day or swim for 30min The Cermony - Perfect Timing I am currently trying to pin point my ovulation. I know just winging it has worked in the past for us, However we are older, and after going through losses we want to get pregnant sooner rather then later. I am using FAM (Fertility Awareness Method) and BBT (Basil Body Temping) checking CF (Cervical Fluid) Using OPK's (Ovulation Prediction Kit) I am also reading TCOYF (Taking Charge Of Your Fertility) It sounds like a lot but its really not. Its easily worked into my daily routine. And raises our chances of conceiving from 25-33% every cycle to 40-50%. It will also help us to know if we need to get checked out for anything. Like anovulation (Ovulation does not take place) or low sperm count (yeah right) Goal- Temp Daily and get a good chart going Finish TCOYF Go everywhere in pairs-Less stress I want to be better about connecting with people. Especially here on the boards! I get so warped up in the day to day and don't take time to do the things I enjoy. Like catching up with friends, or making new ones! It helps me unwind and think about other things besides just making a baby. Which can often stress me out(Which is not good for making a baby) And when my dreaded period shows up I get so down and hopeless. I want to stay more positive and I feel like the accountability and community here will be a big help. Goal- Make time to connect on the boards Do something for me 3x a week Go to your room-Sleep This one is probably going to be the hardest, But the most needed. We like to stay up to spend time as a family but Wolfie and I need more sleep. Sleep is a key part of health. I also need Wolfie to be ready to go when its time for the ceremony. And being tired is one thing that can put a damper on it. Because lets be honest, he does all the work Goal In bed by 9pm Sun-Thur Okay ya'll! I think that wraps it up. I'm so excited to be back on the boards!
  6. When people talk about stress management, I get this image in my head of a man or woman sitting in a bar after work, her suit jacket draped on the chair and sleeves rolled up as he says confidently "I manage the stress department. Those guys are killing it!" and takes a confident swig from their glass of whiskey, neat. I don't like whiskey, and I look terrible in suits. Stress is significantly impacting my well-being. Last night I was awake for 4 hours. I have panic attacks, and while I'm usually a stress eater, lately, I've lost my appetite, and feel too upset to eat. I really need to work out some self-care stuff while life is pretty stressful. My dad is getting blinder every week it seems, my parents are talking about moving in a year, and I need to find a new job, a house, and try to lose 100+ pounds so I live long enough to enjoy those things. The future is uncertain, and I'm ill-equipped to manage on a daily basis. This is my challenge: To live life with all its messiness without losing my mind. Because it's not going to get better for a while, so I need to create mental and emotional space and tell the little screaming person in my head that things are going to be okay. 1. Develop a bedtime routine. I don't have any routine before bedtime, and I often go to bed feeling like the day is incomplete, which wakes me up in the middle of the night. I think a consistent routine would help cue my body into "go to sleep, dammit" and I can stay asleep if I'm falling asleep more contentedly. 2. Make 5 mistakes a day- This is more of a mindset goal. When I'm working at the library, mistakes are okay, and I joke to volunteers and co-workers that the day isn't complete until I've made at least 5 mistakes. I say this to comfort them when they make mistakes, or if I'm having an off day. I'm just going to keep embracing this until it sinks in. 3. Meditate- Taking some time to sit in a quiet space, and being able to say "For the next ten minutes, I have nothing to do, nowhere to go. This is my time to just be." 4. Plan my day and stick to it. I really like the planning set up I had started last challenge of Fitness, Hobbies, Life Chores, and Work. But I often let Fitness and Work slide down the tubes and focused on hobbies and life chores. Which is funny because if you look at my bedroom, you'd never know I clean.....ever.
  7. Hello guys. Rhia Wolfe here. I have not been doing well with my fitness. Fitness has taken a backseat to so much of my life. I need to turn this around and remember that it needs to be a high priority on my list. i'm working with Stacy with NF Private Coaching. One of the things she told me today is what I'm going to focus on for this challenge. I know I'm a week late, but I want to return to the message boards. Miss you guys. So, what Stacy told me that seems to ring true is that yes, nutrition is more important than the working out. You can't outrun your fork and diet is 90% of the battle. However, more important than nutrition is stress management and sleep. I have been crazy stressed. I need to find ways to destress, relax, and get the strength to push forward. Today, Stacy gave me the task of a 10 minute walk. I walked that 10 minutes. Actually I walked for 18 minutes outside on a beautiful day while listening to an audiobook. Not looking at my phone... not thinking about what I needed to do for the day. Just walking and enjoying the sunshine. After that, I went home, and realized that i didn't want to be there. I wanted to be outside. I wanted to do something. I wanted to accomplish something... So, this is where my challenge this month starts. Goal #1: Take a 10+ minute walk every day I plan to also practice mindfulness during the walk. Focus on the walk. Focus on myself. Try to meditate in a way and let worries go while doing that. Maybe this will help change walks from being a chore to something more rejuvenating. Goal #2: Get 7-8 hours of sleep each night. During the week I play to go to bed at 9:30pm every night and wake up at 5:30am. That's a total of 8 hours. As long as I get 7-8 I will be happy and consider this goal reached. Goal #3: Do at least one thing that is productive It doesn't matter if it's doing laundry, cleaning one thing in the house, or cooking dinner. I have to do something productive and then I will type on here how it made me feel or how I felt it was a productive use of my time. The focus here is on small victories. Small goals. I may also start using this as a kind of journal/diary to talk to you guys about some of the stuff that's been going on in my life. Here we go!
  8. Endor

    Fight in the shade

    Long Term Ranger...first time Monk. Long post but it's mostly for me so skip to the goals if you like I won't be offended I've been away from NF for a few months. I haven't told anyone IRL...and I haven't said it out loud...but privately I'm fighting through a sea of work stress and other issues and I've been dealing with it by internalizing and self sabotaging and I've been mostly aware of it the whole way. Ridiculous I know but also irresistible, a cycle I have seen over and over in my past, very damaging but hard to resist. I've been working 60 to 70hr weeks the last 4 months, something I could manage as a young man but these days at 42, I've reached the edge of my limits and teetered on the cliff. Compromised my health without a doubt and knowingly.However I've made some serious coin, and I mean serious coin but I signed up for 5 months of this and was done after 2. Now I have 6 weeks left, I don't need or want the money but I have to deliver and finish the project, I always follow through on my commitments. Integrity is above all else for me. The challenge is I need to look after myself at the same time as I push myself up to and sometimes beyond my limits. I'm in the worst physical shape in years as a result of this situation but it's my mental health that has really suffered. Strange I have never been in this position before...I'm "strong". Bringing years of work stress coping mechanisms to bear and finally finding strength to admit to work colleagues "I'm taking a weekend off and I'm not answering my phone, I'm not working". I slept for almost the whole weekend and needed more. I've put work first, neglected my wife, I've called my borderline OCD (it's really OCD but I don't want to admit that) into it's full power to devastate my mortgage, at the cost of my health and friendships. I haven't seen my friends for months. On Tuesday my sacrifices come to fruition, the mortgage on a dream house will finally be paid off at age 42 and I will begin to set myself up for the rest of my life. A 25 year goal achieved, but at what cost? We'll see. Well here I find myself, at the doors of the Monastery. I need help, I need to help myself. I'm not really sure yet what that means. As a Ranger and a Crossfitter I am multi-faceted and I can bring a lot of skills to bear but the time to meditate, stretch and be with myself is upon me. A strange feeling indeed after pushing so hard for so long, I'm still finding my way in this new head space but initial goals are: - 1 hour of yoga per week (complete beginner) or 1 hour of swimming or 1 hour of "mobility" (crossfit stretching) - 1 float tank this challenge (haven't done one for years but has been revitalizing in the past) - 4 days with no alcohol - 4 days with no sugar These are meager goals compared with previous achievements but they are real goals for now. I can't tell you right now the last day I had with no sugar or alcohol. Times are tough but we will fight in the shade. @zenLara @BarefootDawsy @DarK_RaideR I'm in a hole and I need accountability, if you can spare some time to check in on me occasionally I will be very grateful. Side note, this is what drew me to NF all those years ago and hence the reference here:
  9. It's been a long time... Too much has happened in the last...18 months to even try to condense it all. To sum it up; put on 10kg, became sedentary, have a very stressful job. Time to fix things! Quest One: Lose weight - My final goal is to get to 60kg. I'm currently at 72.4kg having lost 2kg since rejoining this site - Whole30 Weekly shopping lists & meal plans - I want to make Wednesday a shopping day and food prep day because it's my day off Practice a Whole30 diet 5 out of 7 days, to keep it sustainable longer term Quest Two: Make time for me - I often feel switched on at all times, like I don't have any down time, I need to make more time for me! - Cycle to my parents Linking in to weight loss too, I'm a big cyclist; mountain biking and road cycling! It takes me 30 minutes to cycle to my parents, I should do it more often, and give myself an hour to just be mindful Quest Three: Remove work stress - I'm a pharmacist, with my own branch. I have a manager, but I feel lately our roles overlapping, it's too much for me right now. - Stop getting involved in patient conversations unless asked! - Learn to delegate - Stop answering the phone! I feel like my quests overlap a lot, the cycling will not only help me take time for myself but it will help with my fitness too! I'm going to keep cycling in general, plus going to the gym at least once a week, but they don't make up part of my main goals for these four weeks
  10. Originally I wasn't going to post a challenge thread. But I will just miss y'all too much. I will be working some of the time while I am overseas (three weeks out with two weeks of vacation, so I cut a deal with the devil...) So if I'm already working, I have to check in. :-) Bae and I are going on an ADVENTURE most of this challenge. We'll be hitting Copenhagen, Berlin, Cinque Terre, Florence, and Rome. We have been together for 6 years and never taken a vacation (aside from traveling to visit family and some weekend camping trips.) This was supposed to be our honeymoon, but that's a whole crazy story I won't bore you with. The point is we are happy and doing what we want to do. I want to accomplish four things while away: Consciously make the choice to be present. Travel is stressful for me, but once I'm there I'm good. I don't need to get overwhelmed. Just make space and take a few breaths. Write every damn day. This will be a great opportunity for me to reflect and get some clarity. I bought a new bujo and a little field notes book with the Chicago flag motif on the front. No excuses. Only check email and work during the time I have agreed on w/ my job (Mondays and Tuesdays ONLY) Do bodyweight exercises 3x/week. If I can find a gym to train w/ barbells, cool. But I'm not going to count on it.
  11. This will be a work in progress since I am ultimate stress-panda right now. Hopefully will have some time to breathe post race this coming weekend and then finalize my goals for the rest of the challenge (aerial will definitely be on the list once I have time to brain and breathe again!) For this week my only goals are: UPDATED GOALS as of Week 2! GOAL 1 - ENDURANCE - Run at least once per week and do a good walk at least once per week (hikes also OK, and if I run or walk more than once that is also OK!) GOAL 2 - LIFTING - I MISS LIFTING. Slowly ease back into lifting 1x per week on Sundays, because I like how dead my gym is on Sundays and I am finally over my mopeyness that my trainer left and realize I NEED TEH LIFTINGS. GOAL 3 - AERIAL - Aerial once per week. If I can't make it to my usual day, replace with core and pull up progression work. (If I go back to lifting on Sundays I cant really do open gym for aerial unless I want to do both in 1 day and that sounds like a bad idea.) GOAL 4- Life goal: DECLUTTER - This has been an ongoing goal for forever I know, but yeah. Declutter at least 30 min per week! WEEK 1 GOALS (Already past, but for a refresher!) 1. Run final prep run before race either Weds or Thurs. Trying to decide which day is better. If my sleep is going to be total shit this week I should probably run tomorrow/Weds so I get actual time to recover for a few days pre-race. 2. Pack for race trip earlier in the week so you don't have to stress last minute on Thursday night (key note: I don't want to deal with actual overhead baggage and I am not doing checked baggage so I am strategizing how to fit everything I need in one small backpack) 3. Figure out how to lower stress level NOW. At minimum enough so I can actually sleep. Sleep would be nice. Current strategy is I have cut out class for tonight and any plans I had for tomorrow. May also cancel on nerding on Thursday night. ANY plans are causing me aaah aaah stress give me my time back mode right now.
  12. Laidir here! I know I'm late for joining this challenge but I'm hoping to set myself up with some basic healthy habits before the next challenge! I'm finishing my Bachelor of Nursing next week (shameless brag!) and I need to start taking better care of myself. Stress has done a number on my body and I just discovered that I've gained 25 lbs throughout the program and am now technically a little bit overweight. Which is super weird because for the longest time, I could not gain weight no matter how hard I tried (I wanted boobs, what can I say :P). Heart disease, cancer, and diabetes all run in my family and I'd like to do what I can to avoid them. ;P I'd like to lose 10-15 lbs and see how I'm doing at that point, but ultimately I just want to be stronger, healthier, and feel energized. Food Have a healthy smoothie every morning - I normally don't eat breakfast and when I start my day eating something nutritious I eat better throughout the day. Fitness Do the playground or living room workout 3x per week - I want to master my body so bodyweight workouts make sense. (future assassin maybe?) (Also, I did the playground workout for the first time this morning and it was so nice!! I live in a basement suite so actually seeing the sun was WONDERFUL!) Life Study for the NCLEX (Registered Nurse licensing exam) at least 1 hour every day - Ideally on days off I need to be studying for several hours but this should build the habit and keep the content in mind every day. My goal is to be ready to take the NCLEX by the mid-end of May.
  13. Quick sketch of what I'm thinking of this challenge: It's going to be busy at work, it has the potential to be stressful, and I need to manage that: Sleep - check in with the Black Ribboners a few times a week, and continue to work on habits. I may start modifying wake up time, Cooking - eat some damn veggies (I've been slacking...made a huge amount of braised pork shoulder Sunday though, so I'm set for protein for the next several days). I have both broccoli and Brussels sprouts in the fridge though, so there's no excuse. PT - the shoulder is doing better, but still need to keep with the PT. We're on a 3 week cycle at the moment, since I just need to focus on the exercises I've been given. Continue the nerve glides throughout the day Do the full mobility work 2x per day. Do the band work at least once per day (it's supposed to be really easy, so if it feels good, can do more). Suburi, because, suburi Take, or at least plan a small road trip (maybe to the coast), because I have a new car (zoom zoom) to finally replace my dearly departed subaru. Retool my 401k - I was reviewing it the other day, and noticed there are some things I need to re-balance, and funds that I want to shift. So - research and update. I don't think it will take all 4 weeks, but I do need to set aside some time to dig in. Have fun - it's the holidays! (i.e, tap my inner Arch Chancellor).
  14. Challenge 26 - Mistr keeps it together My last challenge was to make more slack. That was largely successful. December will be a test of all my balancing act skills. Normally I get worried about the holidays. This year I'm worried about being out of the country for three weeks in January. I need to make sure that my usual responsibilities at work and home are all covered. Not to mention planning part of a vacation to exotic locations. The holidays get to take a back seat this year. Goals: 1. Maintain a positive attitude. I can do this. Be nice to my family and coworkers, no matter what. 2. Meditate when I can. Exercise when I can. 3. Be strategic about holiday sweets. The world will be full of sugar for the next month. Eat lots of veggies and healthy food. Work on coping by methods other than sweets. Invest in some flavored teas. 4. Take some time to do fun things. There are more than enough tasks to occupy every minute of my day. Keeping my sanity is more important than getting everything done.
  15. Hi everybody, it's been a while I've been wanting to work on my anxiety from new points of view, and I've found a nice resource in Kelly McGonigal's book about stress. It is a pretty interesting book, maybe not as good as her previous work on willpower, which I absolutely recommend, but it has some nice ideas I want to test. I will divide this thread in 3 types of posts, as I did in my willpower thread (if you want to take a look at it, check my signature), to make it easy for everyone to find the main ideas in the book instead of needing to read all my ramblings mixed up in the middle. So: posts who reproduce ideas from the book will be marked with the letters TH (theory) at their top. posts who will present the exercices or techniques proposed in the book will be marked with the letters PR (practice). posts I'll use to comment those ideas/exercices or to talk about my own experience with them, will be marked with RA (rambling). You can skip them, really, I won't mind. I'm pretty tiring when I ramble.
  16. Intro: I had a productive first year in NF, and then the wheels came off. Amidst the perfect storm of mental and physical burnout, injuries and illness, family and work stresses, I went into a bit of a dark place. I went back to bad habits of eating like crap, making excuses not to exercise and isolating myself from everyone. It took longer than it should have for me to recognise and confront those issues, but I’ve done that over the last couple of challenges, and I feel like I’m getting back to a better place. This challenge, I’ll start the transition towards becoming more active again. QUEST 1: Fitness Now that the injuries and aches are subsiding, it’s time to start moving again. Light cardio, light weights, three times per week. No targets just yet, this is just about forcing myself to walk through the doors of the gym again. Points available: +2 DEX, +2 STA QUEST 2: Fuel Don’t Eat and Drink Like a DickheadTM. Continue the carb purge. No energy drinks. Limit the red wine to alternate weekends. Points available: +5 CON QUEST 3: Felicity A healthy body must work in tandem with a healthy mind. Look after what’s upstairs, by any means necessary. Sleep, meditate, ASMR, sit under a tree, stroke a pet, cook, read a book, take a bath. Continue the “must do” task, take a leaf out of Spooky’s book and list three things I’m grateful for on a daily basis. Points available: +3 WIS QUEST 4: Finesse Continue to explore my creative side. Keep painting, and share the results, good, bad or indifferent, on here. Maybe try some drawing again, too. Keep updating the tumblr here with the output. Points available: +3 CHA
  17. This will be largely a furtherance of the previous challenge, with some additional bits. So - Sleep: Get out of bed when I wake up, unless it's the damn fuzzball waking me up at 4 am because he's lonely. Start winding down at 9, in bed by 11 at the latest most nights. Collect a black ribbon. Suburi: Do it in the am. Wake up, pick up a weapon, swing it. Repeat. If not in the am, then in the afternoon. Use kata as suburi formats, working on smoothing out. Contact a couple of different locations about setting up a class. (this is deferred for the moment, but will keep an eye out for anything that might pop up). Stress: Still going on. There's some transition at work - we're reviewing and updating a lot of training materials, handbooks, etc., and developing some roles to create better consistency between three shops (two right now, a third will come online in the spring next year). On the plus side, I'm working with a lot of great people. Still. Stress. There's also some transitional stuff going on in my personal life, which isn't necessarily helping (as transitions are want to do). So... Stretch, daily. - Nothing radical, but I tend to tense and shrink in when stressed. Stretching counters that. Go for a walk. See sleep and suburi Food: Continue the habit of cooking good food at home. Dance (Bonus if it happens): Start up lessons again (especially a group class, since they are a little cheaper) Go to actual social dances. Add ons: For the black-ribbon portion of sleeping: Yes, oh yes, swearing off the V-word, oh my. A sing-song around the harmonium and some cocoa and we shall see some zzz's.... - this portion is going to be developing as it goes along. I plan to be looking into sleep habits, how my bedroom is set up, and possibly other ideas as they are thought up or found while researching. I'm starting with the wind-down and in bed by 11. For the joints - I have creaky elbows and now a shoulder, and this is not pleasing me. I've found that hanging on a pull up bar and doing some work to make sure the muscles are holding the joint properly in place has been quite helpful. I plan to keep doing this at least a couple of times a day. I'd love to work into a pull-up progression, but we'll start with the shoulder, elbow and grip work (the latter of which affects the elbow, at least for my particular brand of low grade tendonitis). Suburi will help this, too, btw. Happy week zero, everyone!
  18. Howdy Y'all! This has been in many ways the summer of slack, not the least of which not participating in challenges, or commenting much on forums. It's been pretty status quo in terms of health and habits, so still some things to clean up, and some habits to get back into. Hence the reboot. Nothing fancy this time around, and, apologies to Sarakingdom, no planned Pratchett quotes (although I may have to find my inner Vimes at some point). So - Sleep: Get out of bed when I wake up. If it's before my alarm (damn you, summer sunrise!), tough noogies. Start winding down at 9, in bed by 11 at the latest most nights. BTW's - sleep masks are at times useful. I discovered that this summer since I don't have black-out curtains, and there are bright street lights on my street (bedroom on the street side of the house). Suburi: Do it in the am. Wake up, pick up a weapon, swing it. Repeat. Use kata as suburi formats, working on smoothing out. Contact a couple of different locations about setting up a class. (this might be deferred 'til later in the fall). Stress: This is a biggie at the moment. There's some transition at work - we're reviewing and updating a lot of training materials, handbooks, etc., and developing some roles to create better consistency between three shops (two right now, a third will come online in the spring next year). On the plus side, I'm working with a lot of great people. Still. Stress. There's also some transitional stuff going on in my personal life, which isn't necessarily helping (as transitions are want to do). So... Stretch, daily. - Nothing radical, but I tend to tense and shrink in when stressed. Stretching counters that. Go for a walk. See sleep and suburi Food: Get back into the habit of cooking good food at home. Speaking of - anyone have any good recipes for grilled veggies? The next two weeks are supposed to be hot (actually hot - mid 90s), and I'd like to a) have some veggies, b), not heat my kitchen (no A/C). Anything with zucchini is a no, because I can't stand the taste of it (makes me gag, seriously - I don't know why, just can't stand it). Dance: Start up lessons again (especially a group class, since they are a little cheaper) Go to actual social dances. So, again, no goals per se, but working on habits and routines. Seems like a good way to cap off the summer and head into fall.
  19. Ensi signing up for another round with the Druids! It's my third challenge with the druids, and this class has been really good for my well-being. I'm working with lowering the high expectations I have towards myself, and getting strong and healthy after a straining, stressful winter. I'd say we're going pretty strong! During the past two years, I've lost 20 kg, and I'm still going for another 5 kg. This would land me in 65 kg, which is my ultimate weight goal. There's no deadline for this, though; I'm mostly after getting strong and feeling good, and managing my anxiety issues and, well, life During my last challenge, I started keeping a comic journal. This turned out to be a pretty nice way to report my progress, so I'm going to keep doing it. I do enjoy art and drawing, and this is a good way to get some comics done every day. My challenge will be different each week: I'm going to set a goal that I need to follow in order to get a reward. I've had a Hidden Item Hunt, in which one of you holds an item, and I can know what it is only if I manage to reach my weekly goal! I'm going to think about this setting for this week, which I'm actually taking off I'm gonna plan my studies and come up with a structure for the four weeks that this challenge is going to last. Is this challenge lacking goals? Absolutely. But hey, comics! Coming up!
  20. Home is now behind you, the world is ahead. A page has definitely been turned in my life: I have a new apartment (Fort Foxy) in my hometown where I’ll be returning this autumn, an internship in a new town for the summer, a new apartment (Internship Headquarters) in this town where I’m working this summer, new daily routines, new people, a new bank card, new workout pants (yay!), and a whole new hairstyle.......! Needless to say, I do feel slightly shaken up with all these changes after a long feeling of being slightly stuck in my life. I wanted things to change, and now that they have changed, I feel slightly scared. Right now, I’m sitting on a mattress on the floor of this new apartment in this new town that feels very unfamiliar. What I need right now, is some courage. The kind of courage the hobbits have: the courage to keep going, even when things get rough. No need for huge battles or sword fights: just a will to silently keep taking one step forward at a time. And have love for nature and food, of course! to something.”“Those were the stories that stayed with you. That meant something. Even if you were too small to understand why. But I think, Mr. Frodo, I do understand. I know now. Folk in those stories had lots of chances of turning back, only they didn’t. Because they were holding on to, Sam?”“What are we holding on “That there’s some good in this world, Mr. Frodo. And it’s worth fighting for.” I only have one goal to follow this challenge: Eat like a hobbit! Hobbits are known to have several delicious meals every day! I’m going to follow this “eat a small portion of food often” pattern, because it works for me. I do like to eat, and eating more often helps me to regulate my blood sugar. A plan I'm going to follow is as follows: Breakfast: 6-7 AM, 400 kcal Coffee/tea break: 10-11 AM (9-10 on Fridays), 150 kcal Lunch: 11.30-13 PM, 400 kcal (lunch break is 30 min, I can decide myself when to have it) Snack: 4 PM, 250 kcal (at work, before I go home) Dinner: 6-7 PM, 450 kcal Total: 1650 kcal a day. One portion of ice cream allowed on Fridays! The goal is to maintain weight around 70 kg (I don't currently have a scale here with me, though, so weight won't be tracked as often), or let it start go under. Last challenge was a success in the sense that I ate more, and managed to maintain weight for the whole month + my body had the possibility to recover from a straining winter. We're still in a slight recovery mode after the move and starting my summer internship, but life has definitely calmed down for now: no moves, no organizing a dozen things involving apartments... I'm basically on holiday This challenge is about getting used to a new life and finding the courage to keep going, no matter how small steps I'm taking with my hairy legs! I'm keeping it simple, because I'm a lazy tracker an prefer to see the changes in the mirror, on the scale and in the way my clothes fit Have an awesome challenge, everyone!!
  21. Harihead is Mellowing Out and Moving Ahead. Last month was, shall we say, challenging. I'm now concentrating on finding a new job, managing the ongoing stress from my current job, and introducing better, more supportive personal behaviors and habits to help get me through the transition time. Life Goal: Return to the weight and fitness I had when I worked from home, instead of someone else's office. 3 Month Goal: Lose 15 pounds before I go to France this June. March: Down 4 pounds. April: 4 Week Challenge Goals: Cope with stress, promote good behaviors, find a new job. Exercise: Cardio = elevate heart rate at least 25 minutes 6x weekly. (This is another bump from last challenge, easy to track in MFP.) A = >6/week, STA +3, STR +2 B = >5/week, STA +2, STR +1 C = >4/week, STA +1 Diet: Try to improve the score on my 2 worst stress-handling fails: processed food and alcohol. For this challenge, I'm going to relax the definition of "processed". Instead of being only natural protein, veggie, or fruit, I will allow some whole grain as long as it's healthily prepared. Still aiming for mostly paleo and no junk. - <=1 processed food/week - <=3 drinking events/week total (monitoring the total to <7/week) - >= 12 glasses water/day (because it always helps) A = 0 fails/week, CON +3, DEX +1 B = 3 fails/week, CON +2, DEX +1 C = 6 fails/week, CON +1, DEX +1 Refresh: Get myself out of this sleep-deprived zone! I want to achieve >= 7 hours a night. - regular bedtime (tracked by my Jawbone UP) with healthy herbal prep - Tai Chi or meditation every day A = 0 fails/week, CHA +3 B = 2 fails/week, CHA +2 C = 4 fails/week, CHA +1 Renew: Handle the transition to my next opportunity gracefully. - Ideal is 2+ job-seeking and 2+ fiction-writing activities per week (tracked on spreadsheet 178). - Count down the days by recording "a blessing per day", so I can move through this change with gratitude and awareness. A = 5/week WIS +3 B = 4/week WIS +2 C = 3/week WIS +1
  22. Instead of challenges I'm switching to this method for a bit. That way I can have some kind of accountability and still be part of the forums. I have a respawn post I made if u want a back story. So let's just jump right in. Today I had coffee, heavy cream but no sugar. Keeping sugar out of my coffee is ONE good thing I have stuck with. As a hungry as I am now, I am fighting the urge for fast food and just eat the healthier lunch I brought. And I had a delicious breakfast of pecans, banana, and cottage cheese. Better than the sausage and biscuit I've been craving. A few good things today.
  23. Hi Rebels! Ensi here I'm a 23-year-old Rebel from Finland. I've been around for a couple of years, done a few challenges and found a place among wonderful people. Right now I'm very busy with my studies, so instead of participating in the next NF challenge, I'm going to put up a battle log... Which you're reading right now! I like to keep things simple and short, so here's what I do: - The Sweetest Day of the Week I'm a bit of a chocolate addict. I've been working on it since last summer, and I've reached a level where I can deal with having a small portion of chocolate daily (2 pieces) and a little bigger portion once a week - so, deploy The Sweetest Day of the Week! I can have some extra chocolate on Saturdays. I used to eat about 50-150 g of chocolate daily, but currently I can go a whole day without it: even though I might want to buy some chocolate, I just don't. It's been a slow progress, but what's my rush? - Dairy, nuts, caffeine ... are something that I need to consume with moderation. I avoid buying these at home, but none of these foods are as problematic as chocolate. All in all, I'm trying to eat as paleo-ish as possible, but I don't sweat about it too much. Portion size control is much more important for me! - Exercise Three times a week until I sweat like a pig and feel like a fox. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aN7lt0CYwHg I love going to gym, doing kettlebell workouts and walking/jogging. Where am I now? Since last summer I've lost 6 kg/13 lbs. Doesn't maybe sound all that much, but I have PCOS and I'm studying hard. I'm currently at 83 kg/182 lbs, and I'm aiming for 75 kg/165 lbs. I'm 170cm/5 feet 7 inches tall. I had a massive break-down a couple of years ago, and I've made a very slow recovery. I gained 10 kg/22 lbs while the break-down, and it's been difficult to lose it again while recovering. I'm starting to be ok again, though, and I'm making small changes in my life in order to lose weight and get fit D8< Nevertheless, I'm doing my very best to maintain a positive, forgiving attitude towards myself, the lack of which led to my break-down. So, here you will find positive and happy stuff!! Unless I'm not feeling positive and happy... In which case you will find a lot of animal gifs! Enough talk for now. Let's fight!
  24. I'm in the publishing biz. That means deadlines. When wrapping up a major (months long) project, I first get really busy days. Then I start working longer days. Then all I do is work basically 8 to 8, after a restless night's sleep that is consumed by fretting over how much I can get done the following day. Some of my peeps call this phase The Death March. It's the nature of the beast; you gotta hit the deadline. One of my fellow managers measures success in how few days her team actually has to do the Death March. (She's gotten it as low as 6.) The problem, you can tell, is that fitness goes all wibbly during a death march. I get overtired and overeat, then I eat junk, and exercise goes out the window. I can plot my periodic weight spikes all last year against deadlines. No more! Thanks to my fellow Rebels, primarily Tanktimus the Encourager, Swampling, and Sloth the Slow and Steady, I have learned that I can get through 1 week of a Death March while doing a super clean diet and increasing exercise. No one was more surprised than I. I want more of this! So, Harihead is going to punch the Death March right in the nose! This is a bane of my life; it happens 3 or 4 times a year. This challenge is going to be all about surviving a Death March without giving myself a health setback. (We'll worry over the fact that I have no life in some other challenge.) Life Goal: Return to the weight and fitness I had when I worked from home, instead of someone else's office. 3 Month Goal: Lose 15 pounds before I go to France this June. 4 Week Challenge Goals: Prove that I can cope with a Death March and lose weight at the same time. That's just crazy talk! But what are challenges for? Exercise: Cardio = elevate heart rate at least 25 minutes 5x weekly. (This is another bump from last challenge, easy to track in MFP.)A = >5/week, STA +3, STR +2B = >4/week, STA +2, STR +1C = >3/week, STA +1F = fewer than this, take away 1 earned point! Diet: Put all that diet prep from the last few months used to lower my cholesterol to good use. For this challenge, I'm going to focus on my 2 worst stress-handling fails: processed food and alcohol. - <=1 processed food/week- <=2 drinks/week totalBy processed, I mean anything that isn't a fruit, vegetable, or natural protein. That includes all breads and all junk foods (like paleo organic potato chips-- just, no).A = 0 fails/week, CON +3, DEX +1B = 2 fails/week, CON +2, DEX +1C = 4 fails/week, CON +1, DEX +1F = fewer than this, take away 1 earned point! Refresh:I am seriously tired. I need to make sleep and stress reduction a priority. Here are my coping methods:- regular bedtime (tracked by my Jawbone UP)- Tai Chi or meditation every single day A = 0 fails/week, CHA +3B = 2 fails/week, CHA +2C = 4 fails/week, CHA +1F = fail to comply, take away 1 earned point! Write My Way Out of a Paper Office:With all the writing I'm doing at work, writing extra hours at home simply isn't healthy. I'm going to modify this challenge to do 1 supportive activity that will help me become independent/week (tracked on spreadsheet 181). We'll get back to writing in April. GOAL CHANGE week 1: Considering the recent meltdown at work, I am expanding this goal to include activities related to finding a new job. Therefore, to get out of this particular office, I'm going to permit job-seeking activities in addition to fiction-writing activities. The ideal is 2 of each per week, but I'm allowing myself some flexibility as events dictate. New challenge is called Renew:A = 4/week WIS +3B = 3/week WIS +2C = 2/week WIS +1 I have a feeling I'll be investigating work/life balance in April. Happy March challenge, everyone!
  25. I'm going to join the challenge from now until 3/27. Better late than never! I've been quite busy with various adventures lately, however, I'm back. I've been spinning my wheels in terms of my health making small tweaks to my movement, eating, and relating habits. It's not addressing my underlying apathy. Some times, I get so sick of the "effort" and willpower it takes to make healthy choices. I've let this slump last too long, since it turns out the "effort" is worth it. I feel, look, work, and play better when I make consistent investments in myself - regardless of how busy I am. Actually, my self investments are more important when my life gets crazy. This isn't about good and bad choices (read Lara's excellent thoughts and progress with moral licensing over here) This is about taking care of myself. Why? When I take excellent care of myself, I become resilient, radiant, and ready to take better care of the other people in my life. So, I'm going to focus on stopping the spiral that's been running me into the ground: Stress --> Sugar --> Suck --> Stress --> So on and so forth... No more! Behold, goals! Stress: Continue my meditation habit (20 minutes once per day), and add at least one other session for at least 2 minutes per day. Sugar: Whole 21 (9am 3/6 until 9am 3/27) Suck: Focus on listening to my Father instead of on my own self judgments. Bonus: Stuff - working on getting rid of it. You know, with all my free time. That's it. Let's do this thing!
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