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Oh heeeeyyy guys! Only been, like, FOREVER since the last time I showed my face around here. A year and a half if I remember correctly. I'll catch you guys up a little bit before getting to my respawn challenge. 

 

2018 was a fucking year - there was a lot of growing up and self acceptance. Certain events earlier in the year forced me to do some serious introspection: figuring out who the fuck I am, who I want to be, what I’m willing to accept in my life, what I absolutely will not put up with, and where I want to go from here. For the most part I think I’ve figured it out, and things have been a lot better since doing so. Summer and fall went smoothly and everything was going well, but as we all know, life likes to take us by surprise. In November I got laid off, but thankfully I was only unemployed for a month and a half. I love my new job - it’s definitely one of the better ones that I’ve had, even if I had to accept a bit of a pay cut. It’s also way closer to me. I had an 80mi round trip commute at my last job, and this one is only 12mi. Literally the next town over from where I live. It’s super convenient.

 

As far as fitness goes, when I left you at the end of 2017 I was at my heaviest - almost 180lb. I put myself on an intermittent fasting plan, and over the the course of 6-8mo I lost ~30lb. I did gain back a few pounds over this past holiday season (so much delicious, delicious food), but it doesn’t bother me. When I started my journey with NF in Oct 2014, I was 152lb. I was miserable about it and the goal was to get back to my high school weight (139lb). While getting back to that weight would be pretty cool, it's definitely not my goal any more and I can honestly say that I have no problem being in the low 150s. In fact, I’m pretty fuckin comfortable in/with my body right now. Seeing how my mindset and views have changed over the last 4.5yrs is mind blowing; I never thought I’d get to the point where I actually kind of love myself and my body.

 

 

That just about catches you all up on my absence, so on to my respawn challenge! Usually I like to have a theme or something, but I’m going to be keeping it pretty simple so I don’t get distracted..

 

2018 involved a lot of mental growth, so I'm dedicating 2019 to physical growth - fitness, hard skills, and putting plans into place. 

 

xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx


 

Self care: Journaling

There were a lot of anxiety attacks and depressive episodes over the course of last year. I get overwhelmed with my own thoughts very easily, and it consumes me. I used to journal regularly back in the day, and that’s something I want to make a habit again. Getting stuff out on paper just makes everything that much more manageable for me. Frees my mind up a little bit. Usually I find a blank sheet in one of the many random journals I have, but I bought myself a new notebook so that I can start this habit fresh.

 

*Goal: Write in journal at least 4x/wk. Can be anything from a few words to a few pages and everything in between. I just need to get something out in order to manage my stress level.


 

Diet: Water No soda

I’ve managed to cut down my energy drink intake a lot (oh Redbull, how I miss you), and some of my soda intake. Now I need to work on increasing my water intake. I joke that I’m a cactus and don’t need much water, but I know I really should be better about it.  Now I need to cut out that soda habit completely - end of story. 

 

*Goal: Drink 60oz of water 3x/wk (Mon, Wed, Fri)

 

*Goal: Stop. Drinking. Soda. C'mon Ruth, it's not that fuckin hard. Use that stubbornness for something good for you.


 

Fitness: Routine

While I spent a lot of time reigning in my diet and getting the weight off, I never got back to working out. Other than urban exploring (which, to be fair, does involve a lot of walking, stairs, and climbing of stuff), I haven’t done shit. I’ve been feeling really weak and easily winded lately and it’s driving me nuts, so fitness is going to be a big focus.

 

*Goal: Full body routine 3x/wk (Beginner bodyweight or NF kettlebell)

 

 

Skills: Photography

Since getting back into the afore mentioned urban exploring a few years ago, I have taken up photography a fair bit as well. They kind of go hand in hand. Christmas 2017 I was gifted a lightly used Nikon D3300 and kit lens so that I could take my photos up a notch (I had been using my phone). I bought a guidebook so that I could learn to use it, and eventually learn to use the manual settings. While I did figure out how to use the camera in auto mode, I never got around to learning manual. For the last few months I haven’t even touched the camera, if I’m totally honest. I just haven’t been out and about, but I want to get back to using it and picking up the skills to use it properly even when not exploring.

 

*Goal: Each week learn a new step/skill and perform 3 practice sessions (at least). At end of 4 weeks, review each skill/technique.

(Zero week will be used to break down the guidebook into weekly skills/techniques.)

        Week 1, Chapters 1&2 - A.) Back to basics: reset camera to factory settings, then update to book recommended settings. B.) Back to Basics 2: Get a feel for the camera in it's 'out of the box' form to use as a control. Can compare photos down the road as I learn more. 

        Week 2, Chapter 3 - Auto Modes: take some time to try out the auto modes available on the camera. 

        Week 3, Chapter 4 - Professional Modes A: begin practicing using the manual settings and adjustments

        Week 4, Chapter 4 - Professional Modes B: continue practicing using the manual settings and adjustments

        Zero Week - Review 

 

 

Other: Updates

Keeping up with my challenges in the past has always been difficult for me for whatever reason. So, I’m going to try and correct that by setting aside specific times each week that I will use to update. You may or may not see me update outside of these times, I can’t promise anything. In addition, I’m going to set aside tentative times during the week to try to catch up with everyone else.

 

*Goal: Challenge updates on Mondays and Thursdays @ 7pm (I will start typing up my updates at 7, so expect posts after 7:30pm)

*Soft goal: Catch up with others on Sundays and Wednesdays

 

 

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I still have a bit of finalizing to do on the side, so I will not be counting zero week towards the challenge. Anything that I do end up doing this week is a bonus. Down the road I would like to count zero weeks as part of the challenge, but I find that it's a good time for me to do planning. I try to start while the current challenge is going on, but then I get distracted/excited and Ranger BrainTM kicks in. So, at least for the first few challenges that I'm back for, zero week will be a planning week  and continuation of the last challenge. 

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Weekly Breakdown

 

Zero Week: Feb 4-10 

Self Care - 2

Water - 60oz

Fitness - 0

Photography - N/A  

Updates - 1/1

 

Week 1: Feb 11-17

Self Care - 3/4

Water - 16/180oz

Fitness - 3/3

Photography - Read? YES Practices: 2/3 

Updates - 2/2

 

Week 2: Feb 18-24

Self Care - 4/4

Soda - 4/0

Fitness - 2/3

Photography - Read? YES Practices: 3/3 

Updates - 1/2

 

Week 3: Feb 25-Mar 3

Self Care - 3/4

Soda - 2/0

Fitness - 2/3

Photography - Read? NO  Practices: 0/3

Updates - 2/2

 

Week 4: Mar 4-10

Self Care - 3/4

Soda - 1/0

Fitness - 3/3

Photography - Read? YES Practices: 1/3

Updates - 2/2

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Just now, Rurik Harrgath said:

RUTHIE'S BACK!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!11!!!!1!1

 

Ken-Block-Gymkhana-8-plane.gif

 

YOU BET YOUR ASS I AM :D 

Props on the ST gif too!! Rurik always coming in clutch with the sick gifs

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I'm a day behind on updating, but yesterday was a busy day. I had two appointments after work and didn't get home until 10:30p. There's not much to report as of yet - I've done two journal entries this week, drank 90oz of water towards my weekly 180oz goal, and that's about it. My photography skills breakdown should be done in the next day or two, and that will be the end of my main priorities this week. Come Monday, I'll be good to go :) 

 

 

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Late update, again *sigh*

 

Goals:

I've updated my photography goal to reflect weekly lessons/skills. I will be using the next zero week to review and reflect before moving forward with new skills next challenge. I started last night with resetting my camera to it's factory settings, then updated them to the recommended setting in the first chapter of the book. I took a few photos in my room last night to familiarize myself with reviewing photo data on the LCD screen. I do not count this as one of my 3 practice sessions. I will likely have to do those in short succession to one another, as I have a bit of a busy week coming up. 

 

Monday was a weird head space day for me, and I ended up doing nothing other than stare at my tv and phone. To make up for missing my workout, I completed the beginner kettlebell routine last night. 

 

Over the course of two days, I did drink the first 60oz. Today I will do my best to get the second 60oz done instead of spreading it out across 2 days again. I gotta say, though, my new piercing is making drinking or eating just about anything a bit tough. I got my philtrum done, and it's an awkward feeling having metal going through the center of my upper lip. Straws are my friend lol 

 

Two journal entries have been completed this week - Monday and Tuesday. Short, concise, and to the point for both. 

 

xxxxxxxxxxxxx

 

 

I have plans tonight, tomorrow night, Friday night, and I'm grabbing lunch with some friends on Sunday. Somewhere in there I'll make time to get all my goals in, because there is no way in hell I'm going to allow myself to start off on the wrong foot one week into the challenge. Maybe I'll use my photography practice sessions to take some food porn and post it next update :) 

 

In other news, the piercing and tattoo I got last Thursday are healing up pretty well. My lip is much less swollen, but I think it's going to take a while to get used to the feeling of it. Things should be better once I get the shorter post in another week or two. The tattoo is just starting to get into the itchy phase, which is going to be annoying AF (as always), but it's still pretty tender too. Things should be good in another couple of days to a week. I'm really grateful that my new job is much less conservative/uptight and doesn't seem to give a fuck about either given that they are in visible areas. Maybe now I'll actually take the leap towards finishing up my 1/2 - 3/4 sleeve. 

 

In case I don't get a chance to update or follow up with anyone else's threads before the weekend/Monday, I hope everyone has a great week and a lovely Valentines if you celebrate :love_heart:

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OKAY SO - I'M MAKING CHANGES cause some things just aren't working right now. I think I've given myself too much TO DO, and not really anything NOT TO DO. Which is making it hard to get myself to DO the things. So, changes are as follows:

 

No more focusing on drinking water, and instead focus on NOT drinking soda since that is a beast I need to fight anyway. I've updated my original post and my tracking post below that to reflect this update. 

 

xxxxxxxxxxxxx

 

Week 1: Feb 11-17

Self Care - 3/4

Water - 16/180oz

Fitness - 3/3

Photography - Read? YES Practices: 2/3 

Updates - 2/2

 

Got MOST of my stuff done, but I did miss one photography practice and one self care journaling session. The whole last half of my week kind of went belly up and I was stressed. Then I formatted my memory card before I realized that I hadn't transferred the photos I'd already taken to my computer. So I lost all everything I had taken. Talk about a facepalm moment (--_--) 

 

 

Week 2: Feb 18-24

Self Care - 2/4

Soda - 3

Fitness - 1/3

Photography - Read? YES Practices: 0/3 

Updates - 1/2

 

Completed one kettlebell workout, but I'm finding it frustrating if I'm honest. I'm trying so hard not to compare my fitness level now to how I was a few years ago, but it's SO HARD. I feel really weak and I'm getting so winded, and it's really hitting me mentally in a negative way. I know I can get back to where I had been, eventually, but like, fuck. I just want to be there already lol. Completing one round of kettlebells is harder than I expected, and I'm pretty ashamed to admit that. I'm using a 20lb kettlebell for the swings, and a 12 or 15lb dumbbell for the rest of it. By the time I'm done on one round, I feel defeated and don't want to do a second one. Last night was one of those nights, I only did one round. At least I did something?

 

I did read my chapter for photography, but I'm going to have to get the actual photo taking done lol. I'll fit 3 sessions in somehow...

 

2 journal entries are done for the week, 2 more to go. 

 

So far I have had 3 sodas this week, the aim is not to add to that any more this week. 

 

xxxxxxxxxxxxx

 

This weekend is looking like it's going to be busy again. Friday I have an appt to swap my philtrum piercing to a smaller post. It's healed a lot in the last week, so not the length of it is just getting in my way. Saturday morning I'm going with my dad to the range to try out his new Ruger 1911, which is one I'd really love to own one day. I need to make the next step in getting my LTC first; I took the class almost a year ago now and I've just been sitting on it. Sunday is my friends birthday gathering - we'll be hitting either the science museum or the aquarium, and then going to dinner. 

 

I got the rest of my tax return back today, and I have to say I'm pretty pleased with it. Half of it is going to tires for my *shiny new summer wheels* <3 I'm so excited to get those bad boys on my dear Elsa! The other half will be going towards saving for a deposit/first/last on my next apartment. I wont be staying in the one I'm currently living in for various reasons, so I'll have to start on the search for that soon.

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On 2/4/2019 at 12:34 PM, RuthixCube said:

Week 2: Feb 18-24

Self Care - 4/4

Soda - 4/0

Fitness - 2/3

Photography - Read? YES Practices: 3/3 

Updates - 1/2

 

Was able to complete most of my goals last week, though I did end up having another soda on Saturday when my dad and I went to lunch after going to the range. Missed one workout session, but i did do A LOT of walking in and around Boston on Sunday. I'm not counting it towards a work out, but it was definitely better than sitting around at home. 

 

Got to take my camera out a bunch, especially yesterday. Took some photos of my car, at the aquarium, and in Boston. Some came out okay, others were pretty dang good, and then there were some not so great ones. Oh well. I'm going to go through and edit some of them, maybe post a few here. I do need to find a free editing software. I had been using Adobe Lightroom CC, but I hate paying monthly for subscriptions. I miss the days when you could just buy the software and that was that. There's got to be something out there that's free or a single payment, so I'm going to get some research in and see what I can find. 

 

Tonight I have a bunch of stuff I'd like to get done. I need to go through my fridge and cabinets and figure out what food I have, what I can donate, and what should get tossed. Then I need to make a list for grocery shopping so I can start bringing lunches to work and do a little food prepping. I spend far too much during the week buying myself lunches because I'm not prepared. I would prefer to go shopping today, and then work out when I get home before making dinner. I also have a laundry list of things around the apt that I'd like to get done in he next week: go through my clothes and sort keep/donate/sell/ trash, purge non clothing items so I can declutter some, laundry, replace the surround in Ripley's cage, give Ripley and Bean baths, clean both cages, and I'm sure there are a few other things I'm not remembering off the top of my head. Lots to do, but I'm trying to be productive. 

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On 2/4/2019 at 12:34 PM, RuthixCube said:

Week 3: Feb 25-Mar 3

Self Care - 2/4

Soda - 1/0

Fitness - 0/3

Photography - Read?  Practices: 0/3

Updates - 2/2

 

This has not been a good week. All that motivation I had Monday got squashed by an unpleasant and unwanted surprise later that day. I wont get into it, but I've been incredibly anxious since then. I've done 2 journal entries, had 1 soda, and that's about it so far this week. I'm going to a concert tonight, but I have all intentions to get some kind of a workout in before I go. Haven't even touched my photography this week. I'm not too worried about that one, though. It's not something I want to rush anyway.

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We will all have setbacks from time to time (trust me, I'm very aware of setbacks). It just matters how we bounce back from them. You can do it!

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1 hour ago, Calibre said:

We will all have setbacks from time to time (trust me, I'm very aware of setbacks). It just matters how we bounce back from them. You can do it!

 

This is very true. I'm working on breaking the chain of allowing set backs to get the best of me, as that has always been a problem in the past. Thank you!

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Hi!!!  So excited to see you back here in the challenges!!!   Your challenge looks great so far (I'm a little late in finding ya!)

 

I've missed pics of Elsa and Bean!!!  

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2 hours ago, Terra said:

Hi!!!  So excited to see you back here in the challenges!!!   Your challenge looks great so far (I'm a little late in finding ya!)

 

I've missed pics of Elsa and Bean!!!  

 

Hiiiiii!! I'm glad to be back :) That's okay! I haven't been able to keep up with anyone for the most part. 

 

I'll hopefully be posting some photos soon, plus i have the new addition to my little zoo - Ripley the beardie. 

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On 2/4/2019 at 12:34 PM, RuthixCube said:

Week 3: Feb 25-Mar 3

Self Care - 3/4

Soda - 2/0

Fitness - 2/3

Photography - Read? NO  Practices: 0/3

Updates - 2/2

 

Last week started off on the wrong foot; while it didn't exactly end well, I was at least able to catch up a bit before it ended.

 

Only had 2 sodas last week, which I'm pretty happy with. Usually I have about 5 or so a week. I'm finding I don't miss them too much, though I do crave them a little.

 

I had a bit of a breakdown due to stress Saturday night. After talking it out with someone close to me, I used the gym to put that stress to some use. Got two workouts in over the weekend on the treadmill - incline of 10, speed of 3, for 25 min (not including warm up and cool down). It's not what I had planned out for the challenge, but a workout is a workout, right? 

 

The journaling has been really good for me lately. While I'm not writing everything down, or even writing that much, what I am putting down is still helping. There's a lot going on right now, and the combination of it all is hitting me pretty hard. I've been wanting to withdraw more and just not do anything - both of which are early signs of an oncoming wave of depression for me. I know I need to take care of myself now to make the hit of the wave a little lighter than it might be without self care. 

 

No photography this past week. I plan to transition this into the next challenge anyway, but that doesn't mean I'm going to drop it for the last week of the challenge. I will get around to reading that chapter today, but I have a feeling I will need to backtrack a bit because I haven't fully understood some things yet. I don't want to get too far ahead of myself. 

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