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Minyla's First Challenge: Consistency


Minyla

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Okie doke! My first challenge has officially begun, and I'm ready to get this thing done. My goals for this first challenge may seem a little too easy, but if I can master them, it will mean that I've made active, conscious, consistent steps towards improving my fitness level for the first time in my life. So I may be taking baby steps, but know that my eyes are set on the distant horizon. :)

Goals

  • C25k - do C25k at least two mornings per week. I've been using the C25k program periodically since last March, but (after some significant initial difficulties getting through week 1) I've never kept at it with enough consistency to get past week 3 (I've been running week 3 every so often since about September). Today, I'm signing up with Zul and my sister for a 5k in April, and I'd really like to be able to actually run the whole thing, so there is now a deadline for me to complete this program. If I can manage at least 2x a week during this cold, snowy, and icy month, I'll still be on course to complete the program by race day. The hands-down hardest part of this for me is finding the resolve and the energy to get up early in the morning, but experience has shown that saving the run for the evening is a recipe for failure.
  • Cardio Salsa - I've been making excuses for not signing up and sticking with a fitness class for at least a year and a half since I finished school. This month, that ends. I've signed up for a cardio salsa class at the local community college. It meets at 6:30 on Thursdays, and I will not skip it, no matter how tired I feel.
  • Bring my lunch to work - At the beginning of the year, I cooked a little more than a week's worth of Bon Appetit's "Foodie Cleanse," a full meal plan of mostly natural foods, with more veggies, fish, and beans than I've ever cooked in my life. It was a great experience, but a LOT of work. My biggest takeaway from the experience, however, was that I feel a lot better when I get up and have breakfast at home (as opposed to the microwave breakfast at work or the drive-thru breakfast on the way in), and when I bring something healthy and full of fruits and/or veggies to have for lunch. Predictably, when we stopped following a pre-defined meal plan, preparing those things became less of a "must" and more of a "wouldn't it be nice." This month, I will shift back, bringing lunch with me at least 3 days a week. I'm going to let myself average this one, though, since some weeks are going to be more difficult for me than others to find the time and materials to make it happen.
  • Jobs, jobs, jobs - My non-health goal is to put in substantial steps toward finding my next job. I am currently in a 2-year clerkship that ends in August, and now is the time for me to make the connections and applications that will be necessary to ensure I have somewhere to go when it ends. This month, I will dust off my resume and reconnect with the professors who have been my best resource so far. I will also send in at least one application for a job I don't think I can get, but would like to have.
Miscellaneous Relevant Info About Me

In OMFG, I am classifying myself as a druid, with strong scout leanings. I would like to level up my druid skills, but most of my current activities are scout related.

I am generally a calorie counter. I don't "diet," and nothing is "off limits." By making small changes in my eating habits, I have come to naturally (if slowly) eat more fruits and vegetables and whole grains, and less crap. Historically, I don't like fish or beans, and one of my sub-goals (and probably the subject of a future challenge goal) is to eat more of both. If I can learn to like unsweetened ice tea and wine, I can learn to eat fish and beans.

I love to cook, but I work an hour away from home and I'm lazy. When I have the energy and resources (i.e., the groceries are purchased and the kitchen is clean), cooking a nice healthy dinner at the end of a long day of work is a reward. Most days, it is a triumph of will.

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Day one: C25k (W1D1 - starting again at the beginning in the hopes that I will get the most out of the overall program this way) happened this morning, but that giant storm heading our way is going to put a real obstacle in my way. We run outside, but I have balance and traction issues when walking/waddling, and running is just too dangerous when there's no clear path. Wednesday morning should be day 2, but we're supposed to have at least a foot of snow on top of a layer of ice by then. Ideas?

I don't have my lunch today, either, and this week is not looking good in that regard. I am volunteering at the law school tonight, tomorrow, and Wednesday, and that usually eats my entire evening, which makes prepping lunches a bit of a trick. Oh! Literally as I was writing that sentence, the coordinator from the law school called to ask if she could give my spot tonight to someone else, which is fine by me! SO nevermind! Hopefully I can get at least tomorrow's lunch prepped tonight! Huzzah!

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Okay, so due to the weather yesterday, I got called back in for judging, so no night of cooking for me. On the upside, I'm working from home today because of said weather, so I will get to make lunch today for sure. Too bad I have so much actual work to do, or this would be a really great day... Oh well.

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I hear ya on the working from home bit. Somehow it's always a lot harder for me to focus when I work out of the house.

Sounds like you're being very active and conscientious about your challenge, though. I look forward to hearing more about it.

All that is gold does not glitter.

Not all those who wander are lost.

The old that is strong does not wither.

Deep roots are not touched by the frost.

http://www.kriegschool.com

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Another day, another 8 inches of snow. So another work-from-home day it is. Today, I really, really, have to make some substantial progress on the project I brought home. I wanted it to be done by today (and it might have been, if I were at the office), but I can cut myself a little slack because of the weather. I need the mental break of extra days off of work, and so I refuse to totally kill myself trying to get everything done anyway.

Anyway, on to my progress. Due to the weather, c25k is just not possible today. Before the snow came, we toyed with the idea of pulling the car out of the garage and doing small laps in there and/or trying to do it on our elliptical. I was skeptical then, but now I'm fairly certain we couldn't actually pull the car out of the garage anyway, what with the blowing snow drifts. So we'll have to put it off at least until tomorrow. Judging was cancelled last night and tonight as well, so more cooking than I expected has occurred, with delicious results. Unfortunately, the snowmageddopocalypizzardstorm has made getting out to buy fresh protein a no-go, so some creative thinking about dinner tonight will be required. Lunch, at least, will be covered -- leftovers from last night's salmon and bulgur pilaf...yum!

Oh, and on the subject of food, I am definitely not above claiming a victory on my "bring lunch" goal even though I didn't technically have to bring it anywhere. The purpose of the goal is to prepare and/or cook my own food, and I definitely accomplished that. Here's proof:

[ATTACH=CONFIG]163[/ATTACH]

Curried Lentil Soup and Toasted Ham and Swiss Sandwiches on whole grain bread. In other news, I don't like lentils. Oh well! :)

post-861-13567242854415_thumb.jpg

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we got a ton of snow and ice today too! my workouts did not happen today or yesterday. hopefully the gym is in the cards tomorrow!

"Come with me if you want to lift" -The Brominator

"Later, I would learn that coincidences are the most planned things in the world. Later, I would learn that every single moment is a coincidence." - Douglas Coupland

"Anyone who doesn't want french fries every day is a commie." - AngelaTheGeek

Current Challenge

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Bleh... stayed up too late last night, wish I could take a nap over my lunch break, but I'm so far behind thanks to the snowdays that all I can really afford to do is make a few quick posts here. I'll be honest: I am dreading my cardio salsa class tonight. I have no idea what to expect or what to bring, I'm nervous about it anyway (will I be the biggest/oldest/youngest/most out of shape/only newbie?), and I'll be home for about an hour before I go, leaving me time to settle in and really start to feel exhausted. I need to keep repeating what I put in my goal post: I will not skip it, no matter how tired I feel. I will not skip it, no matter how tired I feel. I will not skip it, no matter how tired I feel.

But... we'll see. :/

In other news, all of the cooking I was able to do while snowed in means that I'm all set for homemade meals for the rest of the week. Today's lunch of leftover roasted broccoli, pine nuts, and deli ham was quite tasty. [ATTACH=CONFIG]172[/ATTACH] I think "downright delicious" could have been achieved with a little parmesan or feta cheese, but this was pretty good on it's own. This officially makes three days of cooked lunch, which means I have accomplished at least one of my goals this week! Yay!Posted Image

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Haha, I just got home! :D Actually, I got a pretty solid burst of energy this afternoon (even finished my draft of the project I've been working on, which means I'm really only one day behind where I wanted to be (though about a week behind where I really need to be)), and that "just enough time to get comfy" BS was really "just enough time to change, reheat dinner, scarf it down, speed off to class, and still rock in a minute or two late!" LOL. So I may have to give some thought to my routine for Thursdays, especially where dinner is concerned. If I were just now having dinner, I'd be up all night, but if I have to do anything more than nuke my dinner, I might not have time.

The class itself went well. It's pretty small, but I am neither the youngest nor the oldest nor the most of out shape, though I may be the heaviest... Eh, can't win em all. :) I'd say it's definitely more salsa than cardio, which is a little disappointing (I'd love for it to be more Zumba-esque), but at least this means I can count it as a dance class for my OMFG skill without having to fudge it at all. Also, since it was just the first class, we really just did basic steps, so later on it may be more challenging. In this class, we went really slow, and kept going back and stopping. Part of the problem is that there was one older lady who was having some trouble doing all the steps, and three young women in the back who don't speak much English-- actually, it seems that one of them doesn't speak much English and the other two don't speak any English. So the one has to try and translate for the other two, while our instructor (a heavyset woman in about her 50s) plays charades for their benefit (unnecessarily, I might add-- they could follow our basic steps tonight pretty easily). It was all pretty hilarious, actually. I felt bad, but I don't speak any Spanish, either. :( Maybe now is a good time to learn some! :) As it was, it was really just enough to get my heart rate up like a brisk walk, and only for about the last 10 minutes. It did feel like a good basic workout for my hips and legs, though, so that's good.

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No kidding. This snow really needs to melt and go away for good. I was reading a running article earlier and it had a photo of the featured runners out on some sunny trail somewhere wearing shorts, and all I could think was "I can't WAIT for Spring to be here so that can be ME (well, probably with pants and not shorts, but w/e)." Actually, I think that's a pretty solid mental victory for me in and of itself -- the fact that what I want to do is get out and run...

I think the class will be fun. I'd love to be doing a zumba class, I've gone to my mother-in-law's zumba class a few times when we visit them, but I just haven't found one that fits my schedule. The community college where I'm taking cardio salsa has a zumba class right before my class, but I can't possibly get there by 5:30 consistently (or even most of the time). I live in a college town, and it seems to me that most of the fitness classes (except the community college) are scheduled around students, so they meet in the early afternoon or late morning. Since I work out of town (and the town that I work in doesn't have anything), it means that most classes don't work well for me at all. It's a real bummer. I definitely recommend Zumba for cardio, though -- I really enjoy it when I get to go.

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Heya, you're doing awesome! Dance workout, real food, I applaud!

*applaud*

"Let another say. 'Perhaps the worst will not happen.' You yourself must say. 'Well, what if it does happen? Let us see who wins!' ".

- Seneca, 63 AD

"There is no better way to fight weakness than with strength." - Henry Rollins

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Heya, you're doing awesome! Dance workout, real food, I applaud!

*applaud*

:blush: Thanks! :)

Friday's lunch was delicious leftover salmon and bulgur...yum! So A for lunch for the week (I personally cooked my own lunch 4/5 days, although only 2/3 days I was in the office). C for running, thanks to the snow, although I'm tempted to bump it to a C+ since we went out this afternoon and knocked out a run on top of four inches of uncleared snow that fell yesterday (Dear Snow: Nobody likes a showoff. You've made your point.). Since we started on a Monday, Sunday is still part of last week, right? Oh well. The good news is that we ran today, and I'm making enough Super Bowl fare (barbecue steak and blue cheese salad, five spice beet soup) to provide at least lunch tomorrow. The law school judging I was supposed to do last Wednesday has been bumped to tomorrow, though, so I may have to start thinking about what I can toss together quickly tomorrow night or Tuesday morning for lunch, if I can't stretch the leftovers into two lunches. Hmmm.

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It was delicious! :) I had never eaten beets before the first time I made this soup, but I really love the flavor, and it's super easy to make. You cut four beets into six wedges each (trim and scrub/peel them first) and microwave them with two cups of water or stock until they are tender, about 15 minutes. Meanwhile, cook one onion and one stalk of celery in a dash of olive oil covered until they are translucent, about 12 minutes. Add the beets and water to the onion and celery, and add another cup of water or stock. Simmer for about 5 minutes, then add ginger (peeled and minced- I use a garlic press- or powdered) and five spice powder. Then put it all in the blender, and blend until smooth. A dollop of plain yogurt on top really makes it outstanding, but it's pretty good on it's own, too. :) Plus, it's gorgeous!

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So still here. C25k is just not happening this week, mostly because of the extreme cold, but also a little because I'm lazy. Boo to both. In fairness to me, my cold weather running gear is really only appropriate down to about 10 or 15 degrees, and it's been well below that in the mornings. When the windchill is more than 10 degrees below zero, I'm not going out to run. The fact that I wouldn't have gotten up anyway is all that bothers me. :(

Otherwise, it's been a good week, goals-wise. I brought my third lunch today (I only missed yesterday because I left my delicious lunch on the counter when I walked out the door), so I can check that goal off. Actually, I realized that for a variety of reasons that mostly have to do with being a government employee, I won't actually have a full week of work at all during the challenge. So instead of 3/5, I need to bring my lunch 3/4 days. And so far, so good! :) Also, I went to my class tonight. I have already started to look forward to it a little, although I think it got about as physically demanding today as it's probably going to-- and that it isn't very demanding. Zul and I have started talking again about some alternative fitness arrangements, though, and someday soon it may be time to actually follow through on that.

Well, I hope everyone has a fantastic week. We're traveling over this weekend (a four day weekend for me, yay!), so I probably won't be around again until sometime next week. But I will be reading everyone's updates as they come via email! :) Ciao!

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Today, I'm feeling like I'm failing ateverything. I'm unable to keep myself focused at work, so I'm WAAAAAAYYYYY behind where I need to be on this project (and more keep popping up). I haven't run since last Friday -- we brought all of our gear with us on our long weekend trip, but didn't get it out at all. This morning, we got up to run, but we started late, and by the time we realized the c25k app hadn't been running correctly, there wasn't time for any running. So I walked for 15 minutes today, that's it. I had Monday off, and Monday night we were exhausted, so I didn't bother putting together a lunch for yesterday-- I figured since I still had 3 days, no problems. Well, today is my coworker's birthday, and she wants to go out for lunch. I won't get into our office details, but trust me when I say I'm the only person she has to go out with, and it's her birthday. So I'm definitely taking her out to lunch (being there for my friends and family is more important to me than any of my personal goals -- fortunately, they don't too often conflict :) ). So, since there are only two days left after today, I will fail my lunch goal, and unless we run tomorrow and Friday, I will fail the c25k goal. Just because my morning wasn't disappointing enough, I also stuck my mascara brush in my eye (hard), and it still hurts, lol...

Well, I guess all I can do is keep going. It's just a shitty feeling, you know? My frustration did help motivate me to contact one of my professors, though, so at least I am making progress toward my non-fitness goal. And I will almost certainly go to my class tomorrow night, so there's that. Also bothering me is the fact that we've done nothing but eat out since last Friday, and even though we try to eat good things, it doesn't take long before I just feel gross. All of the stress and busyness of the week hasn't left me any time to shop or cook yet, though. Hopefully tonight. I'm not sure I can take another night out.

Bleh, okay. Enough whining.

I hope everyone is having a great week, and a better day than I am. I'm reading everyone's updates, but I really need to knock out a LOT of progress on this project, so I may not be commenting on anyone's threads for a day or two. We'll see.

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