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I'm Stronkey Kong. I've been on these here forums 'bout ten years. I'm still fat despite a lot efforts to the contrary and after a fruitless vacation at the beginning of last challenge that began with good intentions, I've realized that something deep and fundamental needs to change.

 

That's why after much soul searching and reading, and googling stuff, and then finally going into a church, I am enquiring and actively participating the liturgical life of the Orthodox Christian church. Hence, most of this challenge I will be keeping the fasting rules (as best as I can) for the Apostles' Fast. Then going forward we fast every Wed. and Fri. I'll explain the fasting rules below.

 

No worries. I'm not going to talk about it other than the fasting parameters that will affect this challenge. I know I've done discussions of religion poorly in the past, so I'll spare you all from that again.

 

Also, my manager has re-assigned me to regular night shift again. For 10 months I've been working 12pm-10pm, and I'll be moving back to 3:30pm-1:30am. This is all fine, but going to church on Sunday mornings at 9 am is going to be a bit of a challenge. Not impossible, but it will require extra effort to manage on my part. I'll view it as a weekly "reset day" since if I just let go, I'll tend to drift toward later and later bedtime/waketime cycles.

 

Goal 1: Keep the Apostles' Fast-- Jun 12 - July 12

 

Basically M, W, and F are strict fast days -- no meat, poultry, fish, dairy, eggs, oil, or wine(alcohol).

T and Th -- oil and wine are allowed

Sat and Sun -- fish, oil, and wine are allowed

 

The way the church calendar works, we got a long one this year. It will require focus and discipline, but given that I lean vegetarian, this is pretty reasonable for me.

 

Goal 2: Stick to the Sleep schedule

 

Mon-Sat: Wake at 11am , Bedtime 3am

Sun: Wake at 8 am, (nap if necessary), Bedtime 3 am (or earlier if needed)

 

Again, reasonable, but I tend to let sleep schedules drift too much and I'm not sure if Sunday morning resets are going to be helpful or upsetting to the rhythm. 🤷‍♂️

 

Goal 3: Active Morning Routine

 

From waking until  I leave for work... or Sundown on my days off, I need to keep doing productive things. I've been doing good with keeping my morning prayer followed by my morning walks. I'm going to try to take things up a notch (but just one notch) on the relaxed fast days and do either some yard work or KB work. But on more restricted days I'll take my morning walk, do some light cleaning around the house, and call it there. Peopling is fine too.

 

Then prayer and scripture readings etc. to fill the time until I leave for work. Just no vegging in front of the TV. If when I get home in the wee hours, I want to zone out for a little bit before bedtime prayer and sleep that's fine.

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--Stronkey Kong--

 

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Following along. I have a friend who is am Antiochian Orthodox priest. He did the math once and realized that when he follows every fast he's actually vegetarian about half the year. Orthodox traditions are appealing, their liturgy is amazing and goes back further than the canonization of Christian Scripture. I've always felt moved at every Orthodox service in which I participated. What flavor of Orthodox is your church?

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Here to witness. Wishing you resolve and success. 

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5 hours ago, Snarkyfishguts said:

Cheering you on during this new journey

 

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2 hours ago, Tanktimus the Encourager said:

Following along. I have a friend who is am Antiochian Orthodox priest. He did the math once and realized that when he follows every fast he's actually vegetarian about half the year. Orthodox traditions are appealing, their liturgy is amazing and goes back further than the canonization of Christian Scripture. I've always felt moved at every Orthodox service in which I participated. What flavor of Orthodox is your church?

 

Yes there's a lot of fasting from meat and animal products. And agreed on the liturgy. At my first service, about a month ago something struck a really deep chord, and it was learning about a lot of the history that got me to take the first steps... Haha... I was reading some of the gnostic/heretical  gospels and kept running across Orthodox commentaries etc.

 

I go to a Bulgarian Orthodox (Slavic, old-calendarist) flavored church... though I don't think there's a single Bulgarian. The church was founded in the 1970's as a New Age Christian parish, and then the founders all found Orthodoxy and converted the whole church, so most of the congregation are converts, but we do have a few cradle Orthodox who've joined our parish.

 

2 hours ago, Sovalis said:

Here to witness. Wishing you resolve and success. 

 

200w.webp?cid=ecf05e47rx59eieiv9hso2kx3i

 

Come to think of it, now I may have to renounce my title as Dude-ist Priest. <smh>

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--Stronkey Kong--

 

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If you have trouble getting up in the morning, get a cat who'll climb in bed next to you and hork up a hairball just inches away.  In no recent memory have I gotten up as fast as I did today. 

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--Stronkey Kong--

 

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On 6/13/2023 at 12:34 PM, Stronkey Kong said:

If you have trouble getting up in the morning, get a cat who'll climb in bed next to you and hork up a hairball just inches away.  In no recent memory have I gotten up as fast as I did today. 

 

 

My sister takes care of my goobers (two pugs, since she desperately needs therapy pets) and she told me last week one of them totally dropped a deuce on her pillow.  Pretty much the same panic-awake reaction lol

 

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On 6/13/2023 at 10:34 AM, Stronkey Kong said:

If you have trouble getting up in the morning, get a cat who'll climb in bed next to you and hork up a hairball just inches away.  In no recent memory have I gotten up as fast as I did today. 

 

This is a 100% guaranteed way to go from deep sleep to fully awake adrenaline burst in no time flat.

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Congrats on the new belt notch!

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I think I spoke too soon on the belt notch, but at least the cat hasn't puked on my bed, or anywhere since the last time. 

 

Fasting got rough real quick. Basically, I need to avoid treating it like another diet, which is what I do by instinct, and just exercise the basic discipline. Then, I need to learn how to bolster my efforts with prayer when it gets tough. That's all. I'm meeting with the priest tomorrow to talk about how this gets done in practice and how I should be fasting/praying with my schedule etc.

 

Sleep was going good. I was getting into the rhythm last week, up until Friday when I had to get up for a training class at another facility farther away by 8am. Then things went off the rails. Though I still made it to church Sun at 9am. But yesterday I had the stomach issues to show I was having sleep... also to many Coronas on the "wine allowed" fast days. 😐

 

I got the morning walks in last week but fell off the habit from Fri until this morning. But I did some gardening and weeding on Sun. So I guess that's alright. 

 

 

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--Stronkey Kong--

 

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After talking with the priest about fasting here are the new parameters:

1. No meat. Except fish on fish allowed days. 

2. Keep eating eggs and dairy. 

3. Eat breakfast later, or skip it to help with getting hangry. (optional advice).

4. No alcohol, even on allowed days. It's too slippery of a slope (Self-imposed).

5. No eating after midnight. Get up earlier, less groggy. (Self imposed).

 

It's been going pretty good, but I still need to be careful not to over compensate with empty carbs. But today i've been reminding myself about how bloated I feel when this happens.

 

Sleep... I got a phone call from a co-worker at 8 something AM on Thursday. I was not happy.  Then Fri- Sun I slept at my sister's house to watch her insane dog while she was at a wedding. Slept okay mostly, but that threw my weekend out of order. 🤷‍♂️

 

Last week I got three walks in, including a fellowship walk (cue LOTR gifs) with some people from church. Today, I finally brought the 25 lbs KB that was in the backseat of my car, into the lab at work and did a few swings. It was in the backseat as part of my New Year's resolution. 🤣

 

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--Stronkey Kong--

 

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17 hours ago, Tanktimus the Encourager said:

How has the KB at work worked out for you? (pun not necessarily intended, but recognized when it was written and left in by choice.)

 

New KB routines + fasting = Grumpy Stronkey... though this is fine. I haven't done a lot, but without the extra recovery protein/calories I have been a bit more grumpy. But it's proof I'm burning more calories at work than usual. I just need to get a routine for it nailed down between this and the next fast.

 

Then there's all the sleep upsets. I had to go to work early... again... for a trip to Cincinatti to visit a difficult customer (though I think we've worked things out). Fortunately, the storms hit just as we were getting back and knocked out the power so my holiday weekend was extended by half a day.

 

Saturday I got up at 6:30 am to help load potatoes into cars... volunteer work with a local food pantry. It rained/stormed for two out of the three hours I was slingin' bags of taters. That was... fun. Actually, I will be doing this again. Good workout, good cause.

 

Sunday... church at 9 am... I got up at 8:15 am... I literally put a sock on my right foot, then had to lie back down for a minute before putting the left sock. That's how tired I was.

 

I have one week(ish) left of this fast, and one week until my new refrigerator gets here. In the meantime, I'll be planning out what the new diet and exercise routine will need to look like.

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--Stronkey Kong--

 

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I hope your fast is treating you well and you're getting what you wish to out of it, and I'm glad that your priest was able to find you a way to keep going with the schedule you are keeping. And that you have learned some things that will help you out in future fasts.

 

On 7/3/2023 at 12:43 PM, Stronkey Kong said:

I literally put a sock on my right foot, then had to lie back down for a minute before putting the left sock. That's how tired I was.

Yeah, when you are tired the dressing process can take a long time. Step 1 is no longer "find clothes that match"; that's way down the list. It's not even "assemble all necessary clothing". It's "take a minute to remember what clothing is required to be a fully dressed human being". Depending on the degree of tiredness, this can also extend to "remember where you keep each thing", "figure out which pieces to start with" and "after picking each one up, figure out how to put it on correctly". Rumour has it that some people have the wherewithal to do things like put on makeup in the morning, but that sounds like tall tales and legends to me.

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3 hours ago, juliebarkley said:

Yeah, when you are tired the dressing process can take a long time. Step 1 is no longer "find clothes that match"; that's way down the list. It's not even "assemble all necessary clothing". It's "take a minute to remember what clothing is required to be a fully dressed human being". Depending on the degree of tiredness, this can also extend to "remember where you keep each thing", "figure out which pieces to start with" and "after picking each one up, figure out how to put it on correctly". Rumour has it that some people have the wherewithal to do things like put on makeup in the morning, but that sounds like tall tales and legends to me.

Hey, even Superman regularly puts on his underpants after his pants... 😇

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14 hours ago, juliebarkley said:

I hope your fast is treating you well and you're getting what you wish to out of it, and I'm glad that your priest was able to find you a way to keep going with the schedule you are keeping. And that you have learned some things that will help you out in future fasts.

 

Yeah, when you are tired the dressing process can take a long time. Step 1 is no longer "find clothes that match"; that's way down the list. It's not even "assemble all necessary clothing". It's "take a minute to remember what clothing is required to be a fully dressed human being". Depending on the degree of tiredness, this can also extend to "remember where you keep each thing", "figure out which pieces to start with" and "after picking each one up, figure out how to put it on correctly". Rumour has it that some people have the wherewithal to do things like put on makeup in the morning, but that sounds like tall tales and legends to me.

 

I'm getting what I'm getting from it for now... a few noob lessons on how not to do it. <sigh>

 

Thankfully, I found a decent podcast by an Orthodox Christian R.D. who gives lots of good advice on diet, fasting, ands the differences.

 

I suspect efficiency may be another reason Orthodoxy discourages makeup in church 😂

 

10 hours ago, TimovieMan said:

Hey, even Superman regularly puts on his underpants after his pants... 😇

 

I'll have to ask the priest to make sure cuz I'm new at this, but I'm fairly sure this is frowned upon in church 🤔

 

In any case, I'm trying to make this last week of the fast as good as possible while I plan a weekly workout routine around the liturgical weeks ahead of me... and remember the underpants go on first. 

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--Stronkey Kong--

 

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16 hours ago, juliebarkley said:

Rumour has it that some people have the wherewithal to do things like put on makeup in the morning, but that sounds like tall tales and legends to me.

 

Past a certain level of tiredness it's all muscle memory. ;) 

 

 

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The Great Reading Thread of 2024

“I've always believed that failure is non-existent. What is failure? You go to the end of the season, then you lose the Super Bowl. Is that failing? To most people, maybe. But when you're picking apart why you failed, and now you're learning from that, then is that really failing? I don't think so." - Kobe Bryant, 1978-2020. Rest in peace, great warrior.

Personal Challenges, a.k.a.The Saga of Scalyfreak: Tutorial; Ch 1; Ch 2; Ch 3; Ch 4; Ch 5; Ch 6; Intermission; Intermission II; Ch 7; Ch 8; Ch 9; Ch 10; Ch 11; Ch 12 ; Ch 13; Ch 14Ch 15; Ch 16; Ch 17; Intermission IIICh 18; Ch 19; Ch 20; Ch 21; Ch 22; Ch 23; Ch 24; Ch 25; Intermission IV; Ch 26; Ch 27; Ch 28; Ch 29; Ch 30; Ch 31; Ch 32; Ch 33; Ch 34; Ch 35; Ch 36; Ch 37; Ch 38; Ch 39; Ch 40; Intermission V; Ch 41; Ch 42; Ch 43; Ch 44; Ch 45; Ch 46; Ch 47; Intermission VI; Ch 48; Ch 49

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21 hours ago, Stronkey Kong said:

and remember the underpants go on first.

 

Dress Like Quailman Costume | Halloween and Cosplay Guides  

It can become retro.

 

Hoping the fast works out in the way you intend it to.  I know that when I did IF I ended up nixing breakfast and staying as busy as possible, essentially hitting the snooze alarm on my hunger.

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Today concludes the Apostles' fast. From here until the next fast (Dormition fast in the second half of August), I'm back to meatless-dairy-less Wed and Fri.

 

I have some mistakes to learn from and these can be extrapolated to other eating habits.

1) Don't go too hard all at once -- I did this early on, but it quickly turned into what's called the demon's fast, a fast that's not supported by enough prayer and it just makes you miserable and hangry for no reason.

2) Whatever rules you have-- stick to 'em. Flexing and relaxing leads to problems. I decided to just eat meat on July 4th because I was with the family, but it was not worth it and it led to a sloppy, difficult week afterward.

3) I was compensating for something with carbs too often. Might have been the lack of protein (not that I didn't have plenty of soy, dairy, and eggs), or calories from fat or something.

4) It's easier when you have a fridge -- a lot of extra carbs were picked up along with bags of ice from the gas station.

5) No alcohol during the longer fasts-- carbs and compensation, plus slippery slopes.

 

Anywho, the next one is much shorter, and I can try harder to do these things  better.

 

In the next month, I'll be focusing on getting back into an exercise routine, and working on my regular diet.

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--Stronkey Kong--

 

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