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  1. It's the least wonderful time of the year in my world and I am a cranky bitch. I should maybe do something about that. goals are most likely going to change after I talk to my therapist but if I don't post a thread now it's never happening. 1. do one thing a day to make my bedroom or common areas of the house suck less, no matter how small a thing it is. 2. do something about my anxiety 3. eat food that won't kill me 4. learn how to breathe properly again since my lungs are still pissy about that while having covid thing and any kind of exertion makes me want to die
  2. Hey All, it's been a minute haha. In my time away, I really tried changing my mindset a bit. (Not being doom and gloom if I make a mistake or whatnot) I decided it was my phase 1, and just just trying to focus one getting a few habits set. I can spoiler what I was doing for phase 1 to say anyone reading haha The start of Phase 1 At some point early this year, my shoulder got messed up. Frozen shoulder is what they are calling it. I didn't have it checked until recently. I have some PT to do for it, and that is going to be part of my phase 2. Phase 1 has been rolling well enough, that it is time to add in some movement portions. Phase 2 goals #1 - Do PT every morning PT for my shoulder is 3 things at the moment. More to be added next visit in a couple of weeks I had been very bad about getting them done until more recently. I feel like I am doing well with it now, but want to make sure I get it in each morning. I find it is easier for me to get it done right after I wake up. Eventually I will get more movements. I eventually hope this also helps get me into doing body weight exercises and/or going to out apartment complex gym haha #2 - All the walking! I've really, really, really been thinking about running again. I don't quite feel like I am ready for c25k yet though. In the past, I have done it as this weight. I feel like I should get use to walking first, before I run. I've started up this last couple of weeks. At least getting in a walk every now and then. Wasn't super consistent. I want to be better at it. I have tested myself with a bit more walking to see what might be a comfortable distance/time. I play pokemon go while walking around. the 15 minute daily incense is a good minimum. I walked 2 miles today with just a couple of pauses, and my feet are a bit sore. I feel like 30 minutes wasn't bad. This first week, I want to focus on the 15 to 30 minute time frame. I have a route to follow in pokemon go that is about 30 minutes, so that helps. Once I feel like I am doing well here, I might just start up c25k again. I am creeping into getting below 300lbs again, so this will help even more haha. #3 - Getting better sleep This has always been something I work on. It is just too easy for me to stay up late. With more movement, I will really, really need more recovery time. I have been playing Pokemon Sleep, as well. I have alarms set for time to read, and time to go to bed. Bed time comes at 11:30pm, but that gets very close to 11:45-50. Eventually, I might want to move up going to bed time and such. That is pretty much it. I haven't taken body measurements in awhile. I have taken a few pictures at least. Then scale weight has been done. 306 today. No real grading too. It's just been the mindset I have had lately. It's ok to make a mistake. I'm more focused on getting these established as a habit. Challenges for me will of course be things like Christmas. I've already decided that I will be fine eating what we normally make, and leftovers. I can get back to keto after that. I want to still not go super crazy, no "I have to eat all the things since I am not on diet!" I had told my wife I want to still try to track what I am eating, so I want to measure some things out like potato salad. Then I can have an idea. Will be curious to see how my blood sugar numbers react as well too. Anyhow, good luck all!
  3. Last challenge of the year usually means reflection for most and wrapping out the current year. But I feel like I have spent a lot of time this year just reflecting. It is now time for some actionable steps around the reflections. Upping the ante: I have always wanted to do a physique competition and I would like to do it before I turn 50. But before I can even get to being stage ready I need to put some SMART goals in place. This is a very long term goal. Specific: Add a third day (Monday) to my training. This day is included in the price I am paying currently for training. Recovery days are now going to be Wednesday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday. Measurable : Easy, I either make it on Monday or I don’t. Achievable: There is nothing stopping me from meeting this goal. I have no commitments on Monday, and I am currently healthy. Relevant: I need to put on more muscle. This is a step in the right direction Time Bound: I need to do this 3 of the next 4 weeks. (This means I can only take Christmas Day off. If I miss any other week, I have the ability to make it up on Wednesday. Supporting the new training day: Training requires more than just showing up on the day of. To support results, I need to really drive home the following: Sleep: Bed by 10:00 PM and up by 6/7 AM (weekdays/weekends). No phone or screens. Food/Minimize Alcohol: Must eat meals. Right now I am not tracking calories. I am only working towards maintaining my weight or a slight bulk (less than 10 pounds). Also, no more than 2 alcoholic drinks a week. I feel better if I just don’t have it. Hydration: It is Fall/Winter. The air is soo very dry. Week 1, I need to have 60 oz of water each day. This will increase 10 oz every week until I am at 100 oz. Movement: Daily walks with Maple. There is no bad weather….just bad clothing. So unless its too cold for puppers….we go for our walk (or I am very very ill). Some other maintenance items: Accountability: Posting here helps hold me accountable. No Spend: Holding to our minimalist Christmas this year. Each minion gets a gift and a stocking. Most family and friends don’t need things either. At the most I maybe need to buy 3 gifts for extended family/friends. Gratitude: This practice has helped me a lot. I used to judge people who did this every year around November, but just the mindfulness of thinking more positively around things in life has made a difference in my mood. And just because we love her dearly, a Maple picture. She was pouting because I would not let her play outside in the below zero weather ALL DAY today.
  4. Hey - it's me. Been hear a while. Surprising no one my challenge is to walk more. Got my new fitbit and I need to hit my measly 3500 steps per day and try to work up to 5000 by the end of the year. I'm a broken record here but it's all I have left in me at the moment. I'm hoping to have hot water tomorrow (see last challenge for THAT saga) and I just spent tonight at the County Commissioner's meeting where they refuse to lift a single finger to stop a Sand Quarry up the road so we have to go to Plan B and find some reason for the Dept of Water to not grant a permit which basically means contacting lots of folks to find out if we have any endangered\unique species living in the caves in that area that would be impacted. I'm disheartened at the moment. I moved here for the peace and quiet. Blasting apart the mountain is most definitely NOT peace and quiet.
  5. I've taken the last couple of challenges off, but I'm feeling the need to set some parameters for the upcoming holiday season, just because I won't survive otherwise. So this is my very short and hopefully doable list for December: Meditate at least 10 minutes daily Stretch/balance routine 3x per week Workout or deload routine 3x per week Sewing whenever possible I hope this will keep me sane!
  6. Welp. Here we are. As of today (okay, 9:30 pm today), I am officially 40. My first act of my 40's is to...drink me a cup of coffee. And then listen to a little bit of my audio book. And then maybe plan my post. One of the issues with my last challenge (and most of the earlier ones) is that it got to be unwieldy to update. Sometimes, I just don't want to write all that much. Also, especially after a long workday, my hand aches from typing, so the last thing I want to do is more typing. Anywho, I still want to do the challenges, but I need to keep the option of doing either a very short form for those days when I don't have much to say or am too tired to type. Some of y'all use symbols and emojis to chart your progress, so I think that's what I'll adopt, too. I'll also keep the "evaluation" style from my last challenge. I'm not counting individual water glasses consumed or stuff like that. Just-in my measure-was I successful with that one domain that day or not? Also, no more evaluating back days if I miss one. I just keep it rolling. That'll make it more likely for me to update if I go those 2 or 3 day stretches without updating. So here go the domains. Bujo: Yep. I, too, have hopped on the Bullet Journal train. I expect I will be reaching out to some of y'all for some help with these since I am very new to this. Success involves-Updating my bullet journal for that day. Food: Success involves-Staying on top of meal planning and kitchen management, cooking at home instead of eating out, incorporating veggies into my meals, eating enough (not skipping meals), exploring new recipes and techniques, and replacing less healthy sweets (brownies, etc.) with healthier ones (fruit, etc.) Drink: Success involves-Eschewing unhealthy beverages (beer, sodas) for healthy ones (water) and getting sufficient water intake. Exercise: Success involves-Getting some kind of exercise or other body maintenance activities. Mobility work, greyskull (going to start that back up soon after I clear space in my gym), walking, yard work, hiking, etc. I'll even count study of that Deskbound book I bought earlier (only provided that I'm also applying what's in the book which would also involve deploying the mobility exercises in there). Meditate: Success involves-Any amount of meditation, no matter how short. Piano: Success involves-A minimum of 5 mins at the piano. Socializing: A new one for me. Ever since COVID, I've turned into a hermit and have closed myself off from pretty much everybody. I suppose it's more correct to say that I always was kind of a hermit, but COVID let me lean deeply into those urges. It's just hard for me to socialize. I don't really keep up with my friends or my family, and I have a hard time talking to others. It feels weird and awkward striking up conversations with people, especially folks I don't know well. Thing is, it's just as scary for others as it is for me. Add to that the fact that, as I grow older, my social networks are going to become more and more essential. So, I need to start exercising my social muscles. Now's as good of a time as any. Success involves-Commenting on other people's NF posts, arranging (and attending) social gatherings, meeting new people, reaching out to folks I haven't talked to in a while, etc. And then a space for commentary at the end should I feel so inclined. Credit will be either-Full Credit (🥇); Partial Credit (🥈); or No Credit (🎱). No negative points. That's it. Now go enjoy some Jimmy Buffett:
  7. So. Covid-19. 0/10 would not recommend. Especially not when other parts of your body are imploding at the same time. So between covid recovery and having a bunch of doctor appointments to figure out mysteries during this challenge period, I have no clue what I can or can't or should be doing right now. It's fun. Therefore, super duper bare minimum challenge time! 1 - journal or meditate every single day for any amount of time 2 - do some other kind of healthy or self-care thing every day and report it here no less than every other day here's a boobcat
  8. Decided to wait on starting my first challenge post until after my camping trip was done. Anywho, the last one basically petered out. I lost steam with the "project" approach, probably because it got to be way too much to keep up with. It ended up being way too granular which, though it got me off to a good start, turned keeping up with this stuff into a chore. More importantly (and in keeping with what Mrs. Keys learned from her nutritionist), it resulted in having things occupy my waking mind that didn't need to be there. (She told my wife that she wasn't in support of tracking food-She said it causes you to think about food all the time. You should do your best to eat good food, but then when you're done, don't think about it). And it's way too easy to get wrapped around the axle with my own shame issues of having to follow "the rules" (even my own ones) way too precisely. So, I'm going to think of things at a much higher level. My only real activity for the challenge will be to post here each night. That post is going to entail an evaluation of my progress towards my goals-Eat better and do creative things. Yes, they're not goals--not the SMART kind--fine, call them "mission statements" or whatever. I intentionally want them NOT timebound, NOT specific, NOT measurable... Think of them more like stars or the rise in terrain away from a river when you're trying to make it back to the road. They represent the general direction that I want to head, and by virtue of checking in each night and evaluating how I handled the day, I can at least know whether I moved closer to where I want to get or farther away. And I know this works for me because I've already seen it. At the beginning of this year, I decided that I wanted to step up my cooking game, and over a few challenges, I tracked some things, yes, but then I stopped paying attention to it and stressing about it. Yet I still made progress toward that goal because I enjoy cooking, and separate from my challenges, I started practicing more and learning more and thinking more strategically about my cooking. Yes, committing to X meals over the course of 5 weeks lit a fire under my butt, but it was all the other stuff that's much harder to measure that kept it lit. I experimented, got curious, my wife went to see a nutritionist and learned stuff, not to mention I've been doing my own therapy work, learning to accept my mistakes, not to mention reading up on the principles of cooking, etc. So, here's the plan: I'll evaluate my meals-Breakfast, Dinner, and everything else. I'll also evaluate my progress towards piano and my other various flights of fancy. No structured scale. Just this: Am I moving closer to my goals (eat better and do creative things) or am I moving further away, and how do I feel about that? Only one rule: Post each night (unless something more important causes me to miss a night, in which case, that's okay, too)
  9. TBH - that's all the energy I have at the moment. I will be continuing my attempt to find the motivation to just walk. That's really all. If you've followed along at all over the years and have seen everything I've wanted to improve - I've done pretty well. The house is mostly clean (finally). The kitchen stays clean. While we aren't "full on" meal planning, the little guidelines about a nightly theme and suggestions I keep on the fridge have WAY helped so we're not eating the same thing 2-3 times a week and while we do have a few things in heavy rotation, it's not really a "rut" - basically a ton of stuff I've been desperately spent years trying to work on have kind of fallen into place. It's certainly not "perfect" by any means, but I've learned long ago there's no such thing and there really is a "good enough" and for some of those areas I've reached it through some sort of motivation and finally sitting down to do the pre-work required. I'm still trying to reach that with walking - some of which is also fixing my sleeping which is also a gazillion times better - so I'm just going to keep at it!
  10. Here I am again. I have goals and I thought it would be good to have some accountability to go along with them, so I'm back. This is a simple challenge for me - in theory at least. 1. November is NaNoWriMo so my first goal is to write - even if I don't quite have a handle on my story yet. Power through and get it done one more time. I can't start until 11/1 and must write 50,000 words of a novel by midnight on 11/30. I'll track my daily or weekly totals as I go along. It's going to be some kind of weird Western Fantasy thing, but I'm still lacking a bit on the plot - one week of planning to go, so I can track that as well. I've done some brainstorming the past couple days, and hey, today I actually names for several characters, so that's progress. 2. I'm determined to get into a strength training routine and I have found a Beginners Over 50 30-day Challenge. I started on Monday morning and I did Day 2 just a little while ago. Must keep going and not miss. Each video is less than 20 minutes, and I get Sundays off, so it's not too taxing. Just the right amount I'd say, considering how my arms and abs feel right now. 3. Tracking is also very important. I know that. I want to track at least 2 meals and 1 snack daily. I did that yesterday. Today I tracked almost everything I ate well before I ate it, and there's still time to get the couple snacks I missed. I'm using the MyFitnessPal app for this purpose. So that's it. I track my food. I work out daily. I write like the wind. What do you think?
  11. We love throwing up threads on our lunch break. May be a little haphazard but the intent is there at least? Started work last week, still adjusting to being out of the house ten hours a day. Life is kinda falling by the wayside because of it. So basic tasks, getting a grasp of this new and making it normal. 1) Steps target every work day. This should essentially be a given, since my target is only 2k steps and I have to park about a ten minute walk from the building. Construction actually working in my favour right now. 2) Check in every day. Just getting in the habit of getting on and checking in here. Even just "hi, not dead, things are still things." Or a cat gif. I like cat gifs. 3) Eat like a person not a trash panda. The temptation now that I have adult money and less time is to just grab takeout or hit up a drive thru on the way home every day. No bueno. I have tasty foods in the house. I paid good money for those tasty foods. Take the extra couple of minutes to make the tasty food. That should be enough to be getting on with. Overloading myself with adjustments while I'm fresh back into the workforce after 8 years unemployed is a bad idea.
  12. Welp, I stuck around and didn't ghost the last challenge, so I didn't technically need to respawn, but I'm basically just doing the same challenge as last time because it was not such a successful challenge. So maybe not-ghosting is an accomplishment!? I'll take it! I'm on my lunch at work right now, thinking about how my morning went and it was overall unproductive which was a lost opportunity for making my day just that little bit better. I could really use this basic challenge to turn my mornings into more consistently productive and simultaneously refreshing ways to start my day. Since the ends of my days aren't really available for doing these "refreshing" activities and I'm more of a morning person, getting this challenge to work out will be a MAJOR win for me. Here's my challenge, take two: Early rise -- Get up at 4am or 4:30am on weekdays so that I can get a few foundational things done and have "me time" before I have to go to work. M-F. 🌞 Exercise -- Walk for 30 minutes, cardio dance for 30 minutes, yoga for 30 minutes or weights for 30 minutes. It's all good. Daily. 🏃‍♀️ Drink More Water -- Drink 1+ liters of water every day. Daily. 🌊 Meditate -- Practice meditation for 5 minutes minimum, working my way up to 15 minutes by end of challenge. Daily. 🕯️ And... that's it! I got up early yesterday and drank more than a liter of water. No meditation or exercise yesterday, though. Let's see how today fares.
  13. This setup started out okay in the last challenge until shit blew up so let's try again. There are 4 categories and I need to do one thing for at least three every day; no other guidelines, just one thing that will help in that area of my life. 1 - a food thing 2 - a movement thing 3 - a stress relieving thing 4 - a thing related to finding a job or learning a new skill please send spoons.
  14. This time is all about keeping up the things that have worked for me, keeping me well, keeping me happy. A not fully inclusive list : -organized fitness 6 days/ week -eating well/ not over-indulging on snacks -reducing alcohol -sleep enough -listening well -pausing before I speak, especially in irritation -meditation/review time -mentally prepare for the day -remember we are all human, flaws and struggles included -advocate clearly and calmly for myself I will add if I think of anything else. Obviously some of these are harder to quantify but I will try to bring organization to them anyway.
  15. A couple of days late due to travel, but I am happy to pounce upon a new challenge. What to expect: Ambitious goals that I will profit from pursuing even if I don't succeed 100% Charts and graphs Random photos Enthusiasm and optimism but also probably some snark Musings on assorted tangents Also, fair warning to the visually minded among you: I have changed my user icon to a custom avatar I had designed by an artist I love. Sorry for any discombobulation. And now the question that matters: what am I up to this time? Three things! 1. NOT EATING CHOCOLATE You know those people in multi-decade toxic codependent relationships with shitty partners who are nothing but bad news for them, but inexplicably they keep getting sucked back in? That is the story of Severine and chocolate. Chocolate is kind of an asshole who has never had anything but a negative experience on my life, health, self-esteem, etc. and offers me so very little in return (most of the time I barely enjoy it; it's more compulsion/addiction than anything). Yet, it's been so hard for me to stay broken up with chocolate. It took me a long, long, long time to realize that moderation simply does not work for me with chocolate. On the bright side, I have given up chocolate completely twice in my life (once for more than six months!). Both times, it was an unequivocal and drastic improvement, positive in every single way. Yet, due I think to inadequate awareness of the challenges of maintaining that policy, and attendant lack of planning on my part, I stumbled back into chocolate's sinister embrace both times. So, let's repeat what worked so well and iterate on it to solve the problems that arose last time. I will be tracking this, reflecting on it, and working to make a durable long-term plan with necessary contingencies. 2. IMPROVING MY HANDWRITING I don't think it's any secret that I love notebooks, journalling by hand, doodling, etc. As such, I probably pay more attention to my handwriting than is standard. It has been bothering me for quite a while that my handwriting seems to be getting sloppier. The reason isn't mysterious: I don't write by hand anywhere near as much as I used to, and my muscle memory isn't what it was. Plus, I am often in a rush when writing these days (sometimes for legit reasons like needing to note things down during a video call, but often just because I am impatient), which just makes things worse. And then not loving my handwriting means I write less...which means worse handwriting. Vicious cycle. I'll post a separate post with a 'before' sample. Good handwriting is often incorrectly associated with being smart or organized, but it's a physical skill, and it responds to physical training, not thoughts or intentions or strategies. Just as I would need to do strength training if I wanted to get better at lifting things, I need to do handwriting drills/practice to improve my handwriting. My goal is to do this for a short period of time every day, probably about 10 minutes. I will periodically post the progress. I am confident that I will see a concrete improvement over the duration of the challenge. This is important for me because I really enjoy writing by hand - I do it for stress relief and creativity and fun and the neurological benefits (esp. with regard to learning), and I want to feel completely positive about it, not have this lingering dissatisfaction with my physical handwriting skill decreasing my enjoyment. 3. USING MY EXPENSIVE ELLIPTICAL BECAUSE COME ON SEVERINE I have probably mentioned that I find it difficult to spend money on anything that isn't strictly necessary. We bought the elliptical recently for very good reasons, but the consciousness of its cost is still kind of needling at me, and I know from experience that the more I use it, the better I will feel about the purchase. So I'd like to try and get into the habit of using it every day, even if it's not for that long. As such, I'm setting myself a goal of at least 15 minutes on the elliptical every day unless I'm too sick for it to be advisable (hopefully this will not happen). C'est parti!
  16. I’m back. I am so glad for this community and its acceptance of respawners such as myself. Thank you, everyone. I can always try again, right? That’s what I’m going to go with. I need to learn to accept my own failures as much as those around me do. I need to give myself as much grace as I do others who don’t meet their aims. This time around, here’s my plan: 1. Exercise 3x a week for 30 minutes each session. 2. Practice meditation 3x a week, working my way up to 15 minutes. 3. Drink at least 1 liter of water each day. 4. Get up at least an hour before my son so that I can start my day right, daily. I really need to nail down these habits, so if you’re reading this, consider sticking around and encouraging me along! I’ll do my best to reciprocate.
  17. Yeah, yeah. Those of you who've been around a while have seen THAT before LOL. Right along with "and this time I mean it". But, I'm gonna keep laser focusing on that because it truly, truly is that LAST key piece to my fitness struggle. So, my challenge is raising my step count on my fitbit to 5k and hit it 5 days a week. I'd love, love to hit 10k a day at some point. My body is capable of it. It's cooling off and there's no real reason I can't walk twice a day other than weather (rain and avoiding sun rays). Can't do a WHOLE lot about rain, but I have "sun sleeves" and hats - so I need to stop using "I can only walk in the shade" as an excuse - because that's what it is..... an excuse. Enough challenge stuff LOL. In other news, I just made it back (and am recovering) from DragonCon - where I totally averaged > 10k steps a day. Every year we do a little less - getting older SUCKS - but we hit a few panels, saw some old friends and were amazed at everyone's Cosplay. If ya'll are interested in seeing pictures - Search FB Groups for Dragon Con (Official) and Dragon Con (Unofficial). There will be a lot of cross-over as many folks are in both groups - but tons and tons of pictures - some by pros. I think my personal favorite costume was Marvin the Mandalorian - a crossover Marvin the Martian as a Mandolorian character. Brilliantly done (and he was in the "masquerade" where you have to show that you constructed the piece, so yes he designed and did all of the armor himself). Barbie and Ken were EVERYWHERE - and everything you can imagine was Barbiefied - from a Barbie Mandalorians and Storm Troopers to "Hungover DragonCon Barbie". Folks are so brilliantly clever and talented. I've always loved Cosplay but never was good at designing my own stuff. I'm CONSIDERING working with Mom to design a kind of universal wrap dress pattern, then using fabric and fabric paint to design some nerdy nods in dress form which would work as something cool\comfortable for Con and if not too in your face I can wear it outside of Con too. I really, really want a skirt out of the Dr. Who van Gogh pattern.
  18. Okay just playing in the Battle log section got lonely. - Lose 2lbs - Drink 2L water every day - Floss and brush every day - Apply to at least 1 job How do I plan on losing 2lbs? Attempting to listen to my hunger cues. Eat when hungry, don't eat when not hungry. I might play with some fasting stuff. Move more.
  19. I used to go on long walks with a friend of mine in Boston, talking about all manner of things; he is a compassionate person, wonderfully frank, and shared my willingness to talk about a near-endless random collection of seemingly unrelated things. We discussed anything and everything, and once I said to him jokingly that many of my problems in life stemmed from my fundamental inability to fully accept the basic principles of cause and effect. He asked me what I meant by that, and in the process of explaining what I had thought was a cleverly self-deprecating joke, I came to the terrifying realization that it was actually true. Click to expand for the explanation. Warning: non-detailed reference to family violence. I have this problem not only with food, but with work (procrastination and motivation issues), relationships (neglecting to keep in touch despite still being friends with the person in my head), sleep (not even really trying to get enough), various health-adjacent things (not doing PT exercises, following my skin-care routine, or flossing enough), and a host of other things including the very passage of time itself (I am chronically late because my brain can't seem to accept that if it takes 25 minutes to drive somewhere, watching a video on YouTube until 24 minutes before my appointment starts is not going to work out). More recently, I was told by two different therapists that some of this struggle with cause and effect is potentially caused by executive function deficits linked to PTSD, ADHD, or both. I have read about the problems people with these issues experience with things like long-term planning, impulsivity, decision-making, motivation, concentration, etc. and a lot of it is hauntingly familiar. I've been thinking about all of this a lot recently with respect to my goals and plans, especially after what I learned during the last challenge. Fundamentally, there are two major issues: When I do things that are likely to work against my goals, it doesn't truly feel (in a visceral, down-in-my-gut way) like I am causing any problems; and When I do things that are likely to get me closer to my goals, it doesn't actually feel like I am getting anywhere or progressing toward something good. So, as insane as this sounds, my main goal for this challenge is to work on reconnecting with the fundamental truth of cause and effect. 1. Walking: at least 15 minutes every day and 30 or more at least four days a week. The positive effects of walking are as follows: Immediate: time to myself for listening to podcasts and music and thinking, spending time outdoors, and feeling the mood boost of motion. Medium- to long-term: better cardio fitness, wide-ranging physiological effects of exercise ranging from blood sugar regulation to neurological benefits, strengthening joints and stabilizer muscles, and mental health benefits. CONNECTING TO CONSEQUENCES: I will write a little mantra to focus on the immediate consequences and repeat it at the beginning and start of my walks. To help keep the longer-term benefits in mind, I will read at least one scientific paper or article each week on the long-term benefits of exercise, and I will, each day, actively imagine a version of a future me who is active and healthy and doing things I really want to do, e.g. hiking in the mountains without collapsing. 2. Keeping a food record: any format, any level of detail, as long as I'm actively recording my food choices in some way. After a lot of reflection, I think what I like about food tracking is that it makes eating feel real and concrete; it helps me remember that I am a biological organism ingesting molecules with specific chemical compositions, not some character in a book or movie who eats and sleeps when it fits with the plot and the scene and doesn't eat or sleep when it would be boring to show it, and the connection between eating and sleeping and the rest of life isn't treated seriously because it's not an important part of the story. The point of this challenge element is not to change what I'm eating. I can eat whatever I want. The purpose of this is just to pay attention and remember that it's real and it matters. Some days I might use my app and some days I might just write things in a notebook. It all counts. 3. Do one thing each day from my list of "things I theoretically want to do for self-care but never seem to actually do" and actively remind myself why I am doing it. This is an embarrassingly long list. Some examples: Flossing 10 minutes of using my neck traction device to help with my shoulder/neck issue. PT exercises for my shoulder and neck. 10 minutes of Headspace meditation. 10 minutes in the garden. Normal (non-PT) stretches. Moisturizing my chronically dry feet. Doing my (face) skincare routine. CONNECTING TO CONSEQUENCES: before or after or while I am doing the thing, I will say out loud (whispering is fine) something like, "by doing this, I am helping myself because..." with the appropriate details. I will consciously focus on and visualize the positive impact I am creating and imagine my future self thanking me for taking good care of her. I have no idea if any of this is going to work.
  20. hi my name is flea and after 9.5 years on here i'm still a hot mess. current attempt is to do one thing in at least 3 of 4 categories every day beyond what i normally do. if it works i may tighten up the rules later in the challenge. wish me luck. send cat gifs. 1 - a food thing 2 - a movement thing 3 - a brain thing 4 - a batcave thing
  21. I was on the fence about starting this one now. On the one hand, I do want to add more of a narrative flair to my challenges, complete with characters, a story arc, etc. On the other...well, the idea machine just ain't working right now. I don't want to let my writer's block get in the way of building some healthier behaviors, so I'll start with just my mini projects for now and will build in the narrative stuff later once I have the time to sit down and come up with some better ideas. So here goes: Mini projects: 1. Clear headed: No beer until Saturday the 29th. 2. Reconnaissance: Every day, until Saturday the 29th, go for a walk somewhere. No minimum distance. 3. Lore: Do 1 hour of work reading on Sat the 29th (so it must be done on Sat. The goal is to get me accustomed to doing little bits of weekend work.) 4. Well supplied: Finish organizing garage. (The garage shelves are finished. Now, I just need to put the garage back together and get my things in their new home. Might also use this time to brainstorm some new construction projects.) 5. "Tea. Earl Grey. Hot": Daily minimum 5 minute piano noodling each day until Sat the 29th. I've got an event I'm going to on Sat (nothing major-just a hangout with the bros), so that will be my day to update mini project progress.
  22. I'm here. My life has been in a bit of turmoil personally, but I'm still trying to be my best me. I'm not changing much from the last time. Feeling like it's a good time to set up Stoic practice and that means setting a plan for myself. I will report back on what that looks like.
  23. Deep Space 9; Season 7, Episode 10. Nog has been through battle and seen friends killed and injured and has lost his leg. Serious PTSD. He deals by checking himself into the holosuite with Vic Fontaine full time. Vic finally kicks him out saying “You have to play the cards life deals you “ I have been denying my cards. Saying it’s not so bad, it’s no big deal. But after several visits to the ER and with surgery scheduled next month, I have to accept it and deal with my shitty card. I have a bad heart. Born that way. I always tried to just minimize it but after seeing how the doctors are reacting I can’t deny it anymore. It is a big deal. I’ve had atrial fibrillation and an irregular heartbeat my entire life. (the RVRs, rapid ventricular rate are the scary ones. Feels like my heart is trying to pound its way out of my chest.) I always knew that someday it would get worse. Someday has arrived and it has gotten worse. A whole lot worse. I blame the pandemic and the stress and my fat but that doesn’t matter. The reality is I have a bad heart. I want to exercise more and get to at least my pre pandemic level of fitness but exercise of any kind seems to send me into irregular heartbeat and then to the hospital. (You want to get to the front of the line at the ER? Tell them you have an irregular heartbeat. They’ll whip you back for an EKG and then into a bed. Paperwork? Screw the paperwork!) I have an appointment coming up with the doctor doing the surgery and i need to talk to him about exercising and getting some of my fitness back. I don’t want to. I’m scared that he’ll say that I can’t. I want to pretend that everything is fine and ignore my problems. But my problems won’t let me ignore them. I have to play the cards life dealt me. I have a bad heart. There, I said it. That’s reality. So I can’t exercise but I can eat better and take off some of the weight. And I have been working on that. Sadly eating healthier means cooking and taking time to plan and cook And I am tired a lot of the time (I don’t like these new meds, not doing very well on them). I should be working on my healthyish lunch but I’m tired. Going back to bed for a while.
  24. So I have been trying to sit down write out a "Hi, I am back, the world is still dumb, sorry I disappeared" post for a week and a half. Honestly, I have a word doc with notes and sentences and gifs and stuff on my computer open with these things. But the way I am writing this shows its not going well. I didn't mean to take last challenge off, it just fell off my radar. I was emailing @fleaball and told her I was just out of spoons. But this challenge has come around, my weight is a new high of 315, I am tired, I am stressed, and I feel like I work and come home nad collapse every day. I stopped all walking. I stopped doing boxes, I just kinda existed and I hate it. So I am trying again. Things are still bad at work, its the busy time, great time to reset. I mean I worked 12 hours yesterday and 11 the day before and well, more than that the week before that. So yea, I am back. I am doing boxes. I just need to do something because I really really can't keep doing this. I need my life back. Adding the Gifs I had collected to make a fun Hi, sorry I left post. Ugh, the second gif link is bad. this annoys me. Maybe someone can get it to work. I need to go to work. its almost 6 am. https://scontent-ord5-1.xx.fbcdn.net/v/t39.30808-6/226379337_4383410528346736_5132151508722304137_n.jpg?_nc_cat=111&ccb=1-7&_nc_sid=8bfeb9&_nc_ohc=gGYkAQEWJ4UAX9_P2BD&_nc_ht=scontent-ord5-1.xx&oh=00_AfDjuxZqXChxAZ9OwtVa9z_Fsu4QpYDgXXCZaFV9uEJ9SA&oe=64C8DD5D (This is my life. Someone send spoons or help, or reminders that this is not what life is) That last sentence is really bad and I want to take it out. but at the same time. That is truth for you
  25. ugh. I was doing well. then I noticed I was doing well so I stopped doing that and did the opposite. What a pain in the ass. Up on time AM shower brush tooths skin care Breakfast Morning anti-crazy pills Pack lunch AND remember to take it to work to work on time - I chose Starbucks over punctuality wear make up - I don't feel like it Lunch Afternoon anti crazy pills Leave work at 5 Clean house in preparation for cleaning crew. Cleaning crew is doing an initial deep clean and I don't want them using their time on surface level stuff that I can take care of before they get there. Get ready for bed at 9:30 PM Shower brush tooths again Take practical joke amount of vitamins/supplements Actually go to bed track food and also be in a calorie deficit BMR 2053 Intake Goals: 1700 Total Intake: 2033 (I feel like I am forgetting something here?) Total Outgo, according to FITBIT: 3062 Monday Calories : -1029
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