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CallunaTook

Solar Maximum

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During this challenge, I am departing from my usual simple/clean style and I'm going to be comprehensive about my ongoing goals.

 

I have spent the last several weeks feeling optimistic but sluggish, however, the solstice has come and gone and the days are getting longer. Eventually, the sun will even be up when I'm off of work! (Yay) I was fortunate enough to travel to Missouri last year to see the total solar eclipse, and that kind of describes how my life goals went for the entire year. Last year was a fantastic year for me in general (especially travel wise!), but I spent much of it in the dark: I was focusing so much on trying to fix what is physically wrong with me, that I inadvertently let it eclipse everything else and let go of many things that make me feel right with myself. This was my way of digging deep to solve the problem and get back to normal, but guess what - it's still there (although much improved), but I started to feel out of touch, old, and foggy. 

 

I am bringing those eclipsed pieces of self back. Most of the things on this list used to be habits, so if I focus on them they should come back to normalcy without too much struggle. Most of these things are not separate items; they are part of the greater whole; part of me. They've just been sleeping.

 

And that is why this is not a short, clean challenge. It's time to re-boot and re-confirm habits that have always made me happy but have fallen by the wayside during this year's dark times. Bring back the sun. A solar maximum might be in the forecast.

 

There are some items that are not old habits and will be more difficult (Epic Quest items mostly), and there is a need to tweak old habits to fit my current physical conditions. There are probably forgotten items that did not make the list; I will add them later. I am sure things will begin to fall in place as I get back into the groove of things. Also, this challenge is more free-form, rather than everything being strictly scheduled, because I feel the need to create room for spontaneity. 

 

Image result for eclipse connecticut yankee

 

Physical Health Goals

1. Do at least some form of purposeful movement for 30 minutes each day

2. Walk outside for a block of 1 or more hours at least once per week

3. Walk the dog at least once per week

4. Stretch at least 4x per week

5. No more than one alcoholic beverage or (processed) sugary food per day

6. Try at least one new or strenuous physical activity per week

7. Log how I feel after doing different exercises each day (so I can really figure out what my new health limitations are) either in my daily planner or in MFP

8. Log my food on MFP each day

9. Take two mindful "good posture moments" per day

10. Clean the house for 10 minutes minimum each day

11. Check Habitica every day (to remind me of what I need to do)

 

Healthy Lifestyle Goals

1. Organize or Deep Clean at least one room or area in the house per week

2. Leisure read at least 3 times per week

3. Research and Select a landscape consultant (to help remedy chronic trouble areas), plan 2018 garden, order seeds if appropriate

4. Schedule visits with my best friend, my nephew, Super Cousin, and my grandma

5. When I dress for work, wear something that makes me feel like myself. (UGH; Dress codes!!! All my life, dress codes!!!)

6. Keep track of things in my closet that don't fit the bill for item five and make a decision about whether to keep it

7. At least once every other week, allow "tinker time" for a random backburner project. 

8. Select 2018 vacation and begin planning for it.

9. Select a charity to donate my Christmas money to

 

Epic Quest Related Goals

1. Complete repair on hiking backpack

2. Create backpacking gear list and identify any missing items

3. Begin to put backpacking gear kit together

4. Read or Listen to French every day (new French class begins on January 29th!)

5. Research and select a professional editing course 

6. Memorize and practice on how to tie a fishing hook

 

Report Cards

Week 1: 100% completed

        Strenuous or new activities of the week: Vinyasa Class    

        Deep Clean of the week:- front sitting room

        New Adventures: Walked around the lake (7.5 miles)

        Fails: None

Week 2:  98% completed

       Strenuous or new activities of the week: Uncaged Human Morning Routine (YouTube) and a few other videos; Private Pilates Class    

       Fails: No more than one alcoholic beverage or (processed) sugary food per day 

       Deep Clean of the week: Leather shoes, main bathroom (most surfaces)

       Tinker Project: Paleo Cookbook

       Completed Goals: Donate Christmas money, Visited my bestie

Week 3: 98% completed

      Strenuous or new activities of the week: Feldenkrais class, swing dancing

      Fails: No more than one alcoholic beverage or (processed) sugary food per day       

      Deep Clean: Organized bathroom cabinets

      Completed Goals: Selected vacation locations, Learned to tie a fishing hook, Visited my cousin

Week 4: 95% completed

      Strenuous or new activities of the week: OrangeTheory

      Fails: No more than one alcoholic beverage or (processed) sugary food per day 

                 Tinker Project

      Deep Clean: Clean bathroom floor and walls

      Completed Goals: Visited my grandma

Week 5: 95% Completed

      Strenuous or new activities of the week: Rock Climbing

      Fails: No more than one alcoholic beverage or (processed) sugary food per day 

                 Hour-long Walk

      Deep Clean: Dusted the den

      Completed Goals: Finished editing research and selected courses.

      Additional Adventure: Started evening French classes at the vo tech

Challenge Incompletes:

     Visit my nephew

     Complete my backpacking gear kit (although there was progress)

     Week four's tinker project

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15 hours ago, CallunaTook said:

purposeful movement

 

This is really important. So many people miss this point. Why are you doing pushups, why are you doing burpees, etc.?

15 hours ago, CallunaTook said:

Stretch at least 4x per week

 

Not to advertise for my friend or anything, but I recommend Jonathan Mead's movement exercises, especially his morning routine. I think the entire thing is on YouTube, or for more in-depth you can check out his Primal Body Reboot program.

 

Your challenge is awesome. I love that you are in-tune with what was neglected last challenge and what needs attention this time around. Let me know if I can help in any way. 

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5 hours ago, Wolfen said:

 

This is really important. So many people miss this point. Why are you doing pushups, why are you doing burpees, etc.?

 

Not to advertise for my friend or anything, but I recommend Jonathan Mead's movement exercises, especially his morning routine. I think the entire thing is on YouTube, or for more in-depth you can check out his Primal Body Reboot program.

 

Your challenge is awesome. I love that you are in-tune with what was neglected last challenge and what needs attention this time around. Let me know if I can help in any way. 

 

I'll check it out - thanks! 

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On 1/1/2018 at 8:19 PM, CallunaTook said:

4. Stretch at least 4x per week

 

When I started incorporating Yoga into my challenges, I learned just how powerful this is. It is amazing how just a few minutes of stretching a day, a few days a week, can make such a huge difference. 

 

Awesome goals by the way. I don't know how you keep track of so many different things in one challenge. Teach me your ways.

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Wow, that is an extensive list.

I understand where you are coming from though. I have done something similar in the last to reconnect with habits that had just slipped slightly.

A fellow hiker I see. What are you hiking aspirations?

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16 hours ago, StarlordPhoenix said:

I don't know how you keep track of so many different things in one challenge. Teach me your ways.

 

 

Setting goals is the tricky part... I have to be realistic about my upcoming life schedule so I don't overreach. It's also helpful if I pick goals that complement each other. For an example, one of my goals is to stretch 4x a week, and another is to go on a long walk or hike once a week. It makes sense, then, to do some light stretching before and/or after the long walk. I'm probably going to be driving somewhere to get to a nice walking spot, so during my drive, if I'm mindful, I can include a posture break and make sure I'm not slouching into my armrest or setting my hips askew while I drive. There, I'll have hit three goals that work well in tandem. The real underlying goal for many of these for this go around is to *be mindful* and not auto-pilot through my day, taking the easy way and old habits to get stuff done. If I accomplish the underlying goal of being mindful, I know that many of the other, simpler goals will fall in place.

 

As far as keeping track of whether I've done them or not, I've used different methods. If it's a long list, I'll actually carry a list for the first day or two (in my planner or purse)  and scan it to remind myself of what I'd like to do. After that, I can discard the list. Currently, I'm using Habitica for everything, and I check it once or twice a day to see if I've forgotten anything. I checked it after dinner yesterday, and saw I'd forgotten to do my 10 minutes of cleaning, so I got up to go tidy. Before Habitica, I just used Excel. (My brain operates in spreadsheet format) There are things I like better about Excel, and things I like better about Habitica. I sometimes complement Habitica with Excel. I tried printing off a checklist and taping it to my wall during one challenge, but that didn't work for me. I kept forgetting to go to the wall and check things off. 

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15 hours ago, Skywalker said:

A fellow hiker I see. What are you hiking aspirations?

 

 

I have always been a day hiker, and it has been an aspiration to go backpacking. I would really love to do one of the long through hikes (like the Appalaichain), but it isn't in cards: I don't have one of those jobs that I can leave for months. I will have to do shorter ones. I'd really love to do the Inca Trail. At this point, I haven't backpacked at all, so anything will do for a start. 

 

My training plans right now are this:

1 - Get together a gear kit. I think I have pretty much everything from camping and such already, but I need to just buckle down and go through it. Also, as mentioned, I've been working on rehabbing an old framed backpack that I've acquired. After I get my gear together, I can weigh my pack, so that I know what I need to train up to carry, and I can practice packing and wearing it. 

 

2-While I'm getting the kit together, I will maintain a regular schedule of walking, and throw in longer walks/urban hikes where possible. 

 

3-After I have the gear kit together and weighed, I will start training walking while carrying weight. I've heard a lot about rucking and GoRuck and it sounds awesome, but expensive. So I'm starting to look into lower price options. I'll probably just wind up using a regular backpack and adding weight to it. I've read some good suggestions on going the cheapo route. Then I'll build up to carry whatever my gear kit weight is, for the length of a decent day hike. 

 

4-Pick a 2-day trail nearby so that I will have one overnight for the first backpacking outing. Use this short stint to troubleshoot and figure out if I'm ready for a longer one. 

 

 

I have no idea how long it will take me to do all of this, but I will plug away at it until it happens. And. Hopefully. Until I see Machu Pichu.    :-D 

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That sounds like a solid plan.

In regard to new kit what I did was to buy one lighter weight item each time I went on a trip and this way improved the quality and light weightness of my pack with each venture.

A also agree that you can just add some weight to a regular backpack (kitty litter is good to start). When you have your actual pack ready then just use that. It will give you a chance to test it out for rubbing points. If your not sure how to wear a pack go to a reputable store and ask to be fitted for a pack to get a good sense of pack load and hip straps etc.

Do you have a hiking buddy?

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For this week's long walk, I walked all the way around a lake! I've never circled a lake on foot before, and I've stared at this particular lake most of my life. It's one of the smaller ones nearby.

 

It was 7.5 miles-ish, and there was only a walking trail for 2 miles or so, but there were roads the rest of the way around. I did have to go down an old, narrow, 2-way vehicle bridge at the northern edge of the lake. This was not a smart choice, but the only one I saw, so I hustled across and nobody hit me. Yay. Other than that, the walk was pretty perfect because I was able to alternate between paved or not-paved at will, and choose flat or less flat. I averaged about 21 minutes per mile, and according to my walk tracking app there was a 101 foot elevation change which I did not notice at all.

 

I don't think I'd ever been on the Western side of the lake. There's not much over there. I felt like I was out on some country road. The entire lake was frozen solid, but the western side of the lake had a little bit of snow. I didn't even think we'd had snow this year. I threw a rock at the ice, and it bounced, so it was probably a good inch of ice, and in some places it made these mighty vertical crags where water had crept up from the lake along tree branches. There were large flocks of geese frozen into the lake, and the seagulls were walking lithely atop the ice, laughing at them (oh, yes they were!). I found a new park and some vineyards that I didn't know existed, along with a .38 shell, a Massachusettes Bay Transit Card (this is in Oklahoma, so it was amusing), and the head of a former beaver. I left the beaver head alone, after pondering whether my husband might like to have its teeth. I wasn't about to fetch them out. It was yucky. I also went by some very posh houses, and a very posh gated community, and then had to switch from humming my normal road songs to:

Oh the posh, posh, traveling life, the traveling life for me! 

 

I was on the road long enough that I saw the lake people change over. Bicyclists and gardeners were up early. Then they swapped up with motorcyclists and joggers. After that, the families with kids and the leisure car drivers came out. All in the space of less than 3 hours.

 

 

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Thanks for the tips! 

 

 

2 hours ago, Skywalker said:

Do you have a hiking buddy?

 

 

Um... kind of? Not really ish? I often have people who will go with me on day hikes - usually my husband, but once in a while, a friend will go. I go by myself sometimes. My brother may be interested when he gets in better physical shape.

 

I haven't asked anyone if they'd want to go backpacking, though. My husband showed interest until he saw how expensive the gear was, and now I don't know if he still wants to try it or not. We have a local backpacking club that I've been invited to join - it's pretty large - but hiking with a large group of people sounds like it would ruin the experience for me. It really doesn't sound fun at all so I've stayed away from it. There may be some people at work who might go backpacking with me. If I travel to go backpacking that would open up a whole other hurdle for getting a backpacking buddy - they'd need the gear, plus the time and money to travel to our selected location. I don't know about that. 

 

 

 

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Progress Update: 

This has been a weird week for my household. All three of us have an adjusted work schedule, so pretty much everything that I am used to, from which days I am carpooling to which days I stay home to take care of the pets, meal times, etc, has been shuffled around. I kept making tentative plans which I then had to cancel or reschedule. Despite that, I've made good headway on my goals, even though there was no overacheivement going on.

 

Dailies:

  • Sugar/alcohol limits: Check! We're gaming today, and it's Sunday (my favorite day), so I'm allowing one extra treat for today. But it's a mindful choice and planned ahead, so I still call it a win.
  • Posture breaks: Check! 
  • 10 minutes of cleaning: Check! 
  • French: Check! This week I have listened to two episodes of Coffee Break French, 1 episode of News in Slow French, 2 Duolingo lessons, and read a few pages of instructions (in French) from my new essential oil diffuser. I only made it a couple of pages in, comparing it to the English instructions, the pictures, and Google translate, but it still counts.
  • Logging food, exercise, and how I feel after exercise: Check!
  • 30 minutes of purposeful movement a day: Check! This week's haul includes walking, stretching, yoga, and stairs
  • Dress like myself and note anything that needs to be purged from closet: Check! I actually think I like most everything in the closet. I think I forget what I have, wind up grabbing whatever, and feeling weird all day? Or maybe some stuff doesn't fit right? I will certainly have to be more observant about this in the upcoming weeks. Half of the time, when I show up at work, I feel like I'm trying to imposter someone... (like a responsible adult?) Over 10 years in an office environment, and I can't get over it. Blechy. Why can't I just wear my Star Wars t-shirts and black cargos? 

 

Bonus dailies:

I figured, while I'm re-instating old habits, I may as well just be mindful overall and try to wrangle in a few more, because it's really all about the mindset, right? These habits are the "free riders" I've been getting from being mindful:

  • Started using the stairs at work, almost every time. I forget sometimes in the morning when I am still sleepy.
  • Most days, eliminated post-lunch coffee. Even if that meant switching to tea. It's still an improvement.
  • Drinking more water than usual, pretty much every day - which is not saying a lot. I could pretty much survive on coffee and alcohol, and many days, I did. I am averaging 1-2 glasses of actual water a day this week, which is pretty good *for me*
  • Making the bed most days. (Bonus motivation: a made bed is a lovely place to read a book.)
  • Taking frequent movement and standing breaks at work

 

Progress on weeklies:

  • Long walk was great. See previous post.
  • For this week's new or strenuous activity, I took a yoga class. Since this is the exercise I am most experienced with, I figured it would be a good way to gauge my physical status.  It hurt the stupid joint less than the last time I tried it (2 months ago??), and not at all that evening, although I did have to take an anti-inflammatory for my SI the next day. So: improvement, but still not ideal. Probably not a great idea to do something like jump into a regular yoga practice or experiment with yoga styles yet.
  • I walked my best-friend-dog, even though it was cold as freak. I worried about the dog being cold the whole time, but she didn't seem to mind. It's amazing. She has short hair so she's mostly naked, and it was below freezing. She was still stoked.
  • On schedule to read 3 times a week. I am approximately on page 150 of Beren and Luthien. It's interesting and turned out to be more of an academic read; it's pretty much every version of Beren and Luthien ever written in chronological order (so you can see how it evolves) with commentary and interpretation from Christopher Tolkien interspersed between. Large chunks are in epic poem form, which I'm jazzed about - I have always loved JRR's poetry and songs, in some cases even more than his prose. More than once I've gone through the novels just to read every song and poem, in order. I think the version of Beren and Luthien in LOTR is one of the later incarnations; I haven't gotten to it yet.
  • Stretch 4 times a week: Done. It still makes me nervous that I'm going to pull my darn unstable joints back out of place, but I can't ignore the rest of my muscles forever. I am trying to be careful. If that means I aggravate the joints, so be it, they are aggravated half the time anyway and I need to maintain the ability to touch the floor. Originally I thought my instability was due to being too flexible (so sayeth several of my doctors), but now that I am no longer overly flexible and the joints are still jankity, that is obviously not the culprit, so back to stretching I go.

 

Progress on epic quest goals: 

  • I went by the hiking outfitter store to ask about replacement parts, and they had none, and suggested I contact the manufacturer for parts. SO I emailed my backpack manufacturer, and have gotten no response other than an auto reply. It's been several days, so I'm losing confidence in ever hearing back. I am thinking I'll buy some D-rings or something and sew those on, instead; it seems like the bag still has plenty of integrity to put up with modifications and the person at my outfitter's store said the broken pieces were more for extra lashing points than for structural support. So the next stop is to see what kind of fasteners they have at the craft store. 
  • I also made a cursory sweep through a seed catalog and put some sticky tabs on pages. I think I want to try growing some new produce this year. Although my parsley and okra garden game was epic last year! I think I got lucky on those. Maybe I should try that again. I actually made the roommates tired of okra and had to start freezing it. That was a feat. Us southerners love our okra.
  • For my deep clean/organize, I'm going to clean our front sitting room this morning. We'll be playing Starfinder in there today, so I thought it would be nice to tidy it up, and nothing in there needs a ton of organizing. I'll be vacuuming, washing the windows and door, wiping baseboards, dusting, and going through the sideboard and shelves for any out of place items.

 

I didn't make as much progress on some of these quests as I'd like, but it went pretty well, and next week will be better.

 

 

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On 1/6/2018 at 5:42 PM, CallunaTook said:

As far as keeping track of whether I've done them or not, I've used different methods. If it's a long list, I'll actually carry a list for the first day or two (in my planner or purse)  and scan it to remind myself of what I'd like to do. After that, I can discard the list. Currently, I'm using Habitica for everything, and I check it once or twice a day to see if I've forgotten anything. I checked it after dinner yesterday, and saw I'd forgotten to do my 10 minutes of cleaning, so I got up to go tidy. Before Habitica, I just used Excel. (My brain operates in spreadsheet format) There are things I like better about Excel, and things I like better about Habitica. I sometimes complement Habitica with Excel. I tried printing off a checklist and taping it to my wall during one challenge, but that didn't work for me. I kept forgetting to go to the wall and check things off. 

 

I keep trying to use Habitica, but I have a hard time sticking to it. I do well with lists when I use them...the trick is the whole, "when I use them" part, haha. 

 

23 hours ago, CallunaTook said:

I walked my best-friend-dog, even though it was cold as freak. I worried about the dog being cold the whole time, but she didn't seem to mind. It's amazing. She has short hair so she's mostly naked, and it was below freezing. She was still stoked.

 

 

I wish I had a dog's enthusiasm about walking in cold weather. I love, love, LOVE walking. But I equally hate the cold, so I end up walking very little in the winter time, especially now that I am out of college and don't have to walk to class every day.

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9 hours ago, StarlordPhoenix said:

 

I keep trying to use Habitica, but I have a hard time sticking to it. I do well with lists when I use them...the trick is the whole, "when I use them" part, haha. 

 

 

 

I am very motivated by silly things like earning cute hats and pets for my little Habitica chibi, that basically does nothing other than look cute. For me, the challenge with using Habitica is to not cheat and check something as accomplished when it was not in fact completed just to get the xp or avoid hp damage... it's hard to be honest on this app sometimes!  But if I'm not, it kind of defeats the purpose of it. 

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14 hours ago, CallunaTook said:

 

I am very motivated by silly things like earning cute hats and pets for my little Habitica chibi, that basically does nothing other than look cute. For me, the challenge with using Habitica is to not cheat and check something as accomplished when it was not in fact completed just to get the xp or avoid hp damage... it's hard to be honest on this app sometimes!  But if I'm not, it kind of defeats the purpose of it. 

 

For me, the challenge with Habitica is being a super low level character in a party with people of ridiculously high levels! :D 

 

I get it though. It's been helpful to me because I don't want people to think I slack, so I keep making sure I do everything that needs to be done. But sitting behind a computer makes the temptation to cross off pretty hard to ignore.

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49 minutes ago, Sylvaa said:

 

For me, the challenge with Habitica is being a super low level character in a party with people of ridiculously high levels! :D 

 

 

I am excited to be on your team! You will get there. 

 

Yesterday I inhaled all of the sugar. (All... the delicious... sugars...)   I am posting this so that today will be better.  Although I already had candy before 9am... but I'm stopping there!  grrrrrr

Seductive candy...

 

I am planning some movement adventures. I'm excited to tell you all how they went afterwards.

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Updates

This week has been weird. One of my roommates is working nights this week, so even when I *am* home I often find myself tiptoeing around trying to figure out what I can do quietly. I also had some last minute family stuff pop up and eat half of my Saturday, and then spent half of Friday... well... I was trying to be efficient, but I was in a suburb I don't usually visit running errands, and my sense of direction is terrible. Ahem. Moving on. My best accomplishments this week are probably my pilates lesson and putting together the paleo cookbook, so there were some wins despite it all. I do have some ideas on how to move forward next week if he's still on nights.

 

Physical Health Goals

*I succeeded at all goals except walking for an hour, which I will do tomorrow (I saved it for Sunday because it is the warmest day of the week), and keeping to one serving of sugary stuff per day. Didn't do that either. 

 

*For my new movement adventures, I did two things. I checked out some of the Uncaged Human videos on YouTube via Wolfen's suggestion. They are interesting. I watched several, and I did one of the routines. They were not as exercise-y I was expecting, but I am intrigued enough to check out some more of them. I also scheduled some private pilates classes at a studio where an old dancemate teaches. (This is why I was bumbling around in an unusual suburb on Friday) She gave me a home routine for my crankiest joint, and I tried out some new equipment. I used the pilates chair, and the sliding thingy, and "Franklin balls." This studio had an introductory package - classes were much cheaper if I bought the package - so I have 2 more private lessons and 1 group class left on the package; I plan to enjoy 1 a week and then I will probably not drive out there again. We'll see. It was really fun seeing her and trying new equipment. I felt ok afterwards, but not super. I'll keep up with the homework and we'll see how the rest goes. 

 

Healthy Lifestyle Goals

* I'm not sure if I'll have time to deep clean the house tomorrow, and I haven't been able to do it so far this week without waking up sleeping roomie. I DID clean, leather-treat, and water-proof all of my leather shoes, because that was quiet... soooo... not sure if that counts. 

 

* My reading sessions have been shorter. It is much harder to read several pages of epic poetry than it is to read several pages of prose, apparently. If I'm not careful, my brain just kind of starts humming the words along like a song and focusing on the rhythm instead of the meaning. Then I have to pause, re-read, and slow down.

 

* Researched and collected names for landscape consultants. Didn't call anyone yet. haven't finished planning the garden.

 

* My bestie and I are meeting at a new bookstore on Monday to check it out and catch up. Hooray! Haven't scheduled hookups with anyone else on the list.

 

 

*Week 2 means it's time to tackle a tinker project. My backburner project for this week was to pull out my stack of paleo recipes and organize them. They are now all in page protectors, in a 3-ring binder, with tab dividers. The hubby was so happy with it that he tried a new recipe tonight, and it was delicious! The roommate was very entertained that I labelled the book "Collected Paleo Adventures"

 

 

 

* We opened the Adventure jar today and went through travel ideas for next year. We narrowed it down to some top contenders, and haven't made the final selection yet. My top choice, which was to enjoy a week in a hobbit hole, was outvoted. Maybe another year. 

 

* Regarding sending Christmas money to charity - done and done!. Then I sent a thank you card to the person who gave me Christmas money.

 

Epic Quest Related Goals

* So, the manufacturer of my backpack finally emailed me back. They don't have the replacement part. They sent me a coupon for their website as an apology. I have no need of this coupon. So craft store to look for parts it is. 

 

* I put the gear list together. This actually took more time than I thought it would, because it involved pulling out several existing gear lists that i had from different resources, comparing and consolidating them, and printing new ones. I'm now confident I have a good list. I haven't gone through my stuff yet.

 

*French practice haul includes Coffee Break French, DuoLingo, Kwiziq French, a few minutes of the Asterix cartoon, and more dabbling with my essential oil diffuser instructions. No News In Slow this week. It intimidates me, but I feel like if I keep listening to people speak French at the normal pace, eventually it will start to sound like words. Granted, this has been my working theory for three years now.

 

*  Made a brief start into looking stuff up on professional editing courses.

 

 

*Looked at pictures for Palomar knots online. Haven't pulled out the fishing gear to practice yet.

 

 

 

Basically, I've been doing a lot of reading and looking stuff up this week. Because computer research does not wake up sleeping roommates.

We all really hope he will get to work days again soon... no telling, though. :-\  

The GOOD part about him working nights lately is... I have an excuse to unplug the landline. :-D  

 

In other news, here is happy Jackie Chan dancing happy Bollywood style. OH YES HE IS>  

 

 

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On 1/16/2018 at 7:40 AM, StarlordPhoenix said:

If you find any good online ones, let me know :)

 

Right, ok!  My challenge right now as I scan them is figuring out what level is most appropriate for me. There is everything from free to a few hundred dollars for lessons, to certificate programs, to graduate degrees, all online!   On top of that, you don't really *have* to have any type of editing credentials to do the work. So a big part of researching this is figuring out... where do I fit, and what do I need? I love to go into education whole-hog and over certify myself (usually), but do I really want to do that here? Probably not... but I'm trying to decide. 

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This week's "new thing" was to take a Feldenkrais class (yesterday). I chose this because I had never heard of it, and had no idea what it was. Now that I've taken one class, I still don't have a real clear idea of what it is, except that I think I've seen it on tv at some point and of course I've read definitions and descriptions of it. I'm still a little bit foggy. It's something to do with "creating new neural pathways" in your brain, finding different movement options, "thinking outside the box" and breaking habits that don't benefit you. Functional wise, we did a few simple and repetitive motions while laying on blankets, sometimes using major muscle groups, sometimes using minor muscle groups, and sometimes using the same basic movement but initiating with different sets of muscles. The pace was very slow. There were a lot of "feel your body in space/feel where you are touching the mat/etc" kind of statements, like you often hear in yoga. I've studied different forms of movement and body therapy and amature ergonomics for a long time now, and I was fascinated at finding something that was very different - although I was not sure what the point of it was - and that feeling in and of itself might have been the entire goal, if that makes sense. I'm still not sure. The real stars of the experience were the teacher, the students, and the beautiful aikido dojo where the class was held. All were fabulous and warm, and I felt like I was hanging out in someone's house, at some big family reunion, rolling around on the floor. I almost will feel guilty if I don't go back. I may not, but I'm curious enough to look at the resources the teacher pointed me towards in our post-discussion. 

 

I think this is a picture of one of the exercises we did in class. Also, I think they call exercises ATMs, which stands for "Awareness Through Movement."

 

Image result for feldenkrais method

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2 hours ago, CallunaTook said:

I love to go into education whole-hog and over certify myself (usually), but do I really want to do that here? Probably not... but I'm trying to decide. 

Haha, this is so me. I house-sat/cat-sat for a woman who had like two PhD's and four or five masters degrees. I remember thinking, "I want to be just like her when I am older." Years later I am still not entirely opposed to that thought, though I do tend to enjoy non-traditional/self-taught learning over most classroom settings.

I can understand the frustration, though. I have considered branching into editing, but I do not  really have the qualifications for it yet. Raw talent? Sure. Actual skill and experience...not so much.

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Another week with the goal to be extra productive on my challenge list, foiled by life in the way. But it's a good life, so that's not really a complaint.  

 

I hit all of my dailies this week except on Sunday, when I had a family event (deployment party) followed by an unexpected friend emergency. By the time it got home it was bed time and I was too tired to finish my dailies, but I'm not going to ding myself for that because I had my priorities EXACTLY right and accomplished what I could. 

 

I owe a couple of you some thoughtful responses. They are coming as I can. :)  I am thinking about you.

 

Physical Health Goals

Done every day this week except for Sunday.

 

The adventure movement was feldenkrais, and my 30 minutes a day were usually my pilates homework (from adventure movement week 1, I really liked it, so I'm still doing it. It makes jankity joints feel better.).

 

I also did some swing dancing with my brother on Saturday, and it had been years for both of us. It didn't take too long to brush up and get back to it. Super fun. I was just helping him practice. I kind of hoped he'd invite me along dancing with him, but maybe that will happen later. I love dancing with my brother; also, he has a pretty good lead and can improv well.  He only does west coast swing, but that's forgivable.  (:-P  (ha ha) Yep, I'm teasing him and he isn't even here)

 

 

Healthy Lifestyle Goals

Did good. Organized the bathroom cabinets.

 

Still reading Beren and Luthien; made it through the epic poetry section.

 

Saw my cousin.

 

We decided to go to England/Scotland for this year's vacation, and possibly back to Burning Man if our burner buddies are going. We also have 2019 and 2020 destinations selected, based around visiting more deployed friends. (Sweden and Japan) Woohoo, getting to visit friends out of country is kind of like seeing the world on sale. 

 

 

Epic Quest Related Goals

I received the backpack repair pieces via mail. They look tough. I'm not sure if I'll be able to push a needle through them. We'll see.

 

I learned and practiced my palomar knot yesterday on a hula popper (bass bait) until I had it down. I may draw a little reminder to stick in the tackle box, in case I forget before I need the skill again. 

Image result for palomar knot

French practice included Coffee Break French, News in Slow, Kwiziq, Duolingo, scanning the newspaper I brought back from Switzerland last year, and trying to read the French panel on my can of coffee. Make no mistake, I'm still terrible at it. My husband and I spent most of the time with the coffee can using Google translate and trying to figure out if they really translated "Kicks ass" right; we never did figure it out. It kind of seems like it just said "The coffee that buttocks" but... erm... I guess I don't actually know if 'kick ass' is a phrase in French, either, which is part of the problem. We were both too timid to What's App one of our frenchy cousins and ask. I don't know enough about them to know if that kind of question is socially ok.

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On 1/17/2018 at 10:28 PM, StarlordPhoenix said:

Haha, this is so me. I house-sat/cat-sat for a woman who had like two PhD's and four or five masters degrees. I remember thinking, "I want to be just like her when I am older." Years later I am still not entirely opposed to that thought, though I do tend to enjoy non-traditional/self-taught learning over most classroom settings.

I can understand the frustration, though. I have considered branching into editing, but I do not  really have the qualifications for it yet. Raw talent? Sure. Actual skill and experience...not so much.

 

I too once dreamed of being a professional student :P I'd still like to do this, but obviously the funding would be insane...

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On 1/23/2018 at 4:00 PM, Leigh said:

 

I too once dreamed of being a professional student :P I'd still like to do this, but obviously the funding would be insane...

 

I learned from one of my college professors ("back in the day") that they were allowed to audit one class per semester, for free!  It's been more than 10 years now, but I still think back to that... and think... maybe I should become a professor... for free college for forever??   But I also imagine that after I paid for a graduate degree to get a professorship it would certainly not be "free" anymore!

 

I did get free dance classes as a dance teacher, though, and free gym classes when I taught yoga at a gym. My husband received free tae kwon do classes when he taught tkd... *le sigh*  Good times, good times.

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This week's fitness adventure was trying a free class at Orange Theory. I called up my bestie and sometimes workout buddy, and met her in an upper class shopping center where the place is. Our visit and the workout class was super structured. We were told to arrive 35 minutes early. In that 35 minutes we filled out paper work and waivers, received a heart rate monitor to wear during the class, got introduced to everyone, and they explained how the class works. Also, we each got a number. I was number 2. She was number 1. Very methodical. 

 

So the class works like so. It is interval circuit training, and you are supposed to set your own pace based on your heart rate monitor. Your heart rate is displayed as a percentage on a tv so you can do this. The heart rate monitor color codes your data into "zones." Green is base zone, blue or gray is resting, yellow is above green, and the orange zone starts around 80% and is the sometimes target zone. Red goes above orange. For every minute you spend in the orange or red zone, you get one point. The goal is at least 12 points. The instructor calls out which zones you should be in, which part of the circuit you should be on, demonstrates moves, and gives modifications if you need them. 

 

So it went like this: rowing, weight room (had dumbbells, a step bench, and a TRX), rowing, weight room, rowing, tread mill. On the tread mill you could choose to adjust your heart rate by jogging (adjusting the speed on the tread mill) or speed walking (adjusting the incline on the tread mill). In the weight room, there were tvs showing what moves you were supposed to be doing, your reps and your order. Since I was number 2, every time we changed station, I went to station number two. Rower 2. Treadmill 2. Bench 2. Etc. The whole system is quantitative and methodical heaven for the scientific/engineering brain. (What do you mean, you email me a bar graph that shows my workout? OMG! I love graphs!! And everything is numbered? Sweet!)

 

At the end of the class, we got a chart showing how many minutes we spent in each zone and our calorie break out. Also, they sat us down to tell us how much everything cost and ask if we would be buying any classes. For a self-motivated gym rat, it would probably not be worth the money because you really don't learn anything that new. For someone who needs the extra motivation, or a basic structure, or is motivated by the high-techness and bar graphs... I can see the benefit. I don't like those types of exercises enough to join, but it was pretty fun for once. I won't be surprised if bestie joins. She loves gym workouts.

 

Here was my chart. i'm really skeptical of the calorie formula they used. It seems extreme.

 

 

 

 

 

Capture.PNG

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