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Hi all, I'm Anna. I'm new to NerdFitness, but not new to nerdery or gaming, and I'm excited to combine the two in my pursuit of leveling up my life.

 

Starting Stats: [sTR: 1] [DEX:5] [sTA:1] [CON:3] [WIS:3] [CHA:2]

 

Before I set into my goals though, there's a big reason I'm a Druid and not one of the other classes - I have some pretty major physical limitations that keep me from doing a lot of things, so balance is HUGE for me. I have Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome (type III - hypermobility, see Dexterity score of 5), so my types and duration of exercise are limited, and I deal with a substantial amount of chronic pain. I'm mid-meds-tweak-cycle with my rheumatologist, but he is adamant that exercise needs to be part of my life, since strong muscles help protect wibbly-wobbly joints, so I figured I'd jump into the challenge and see where it gets me. I am allowed to do bodyweight strength training, but right now that causes me too much joint pain, so I'm holding off on that until I get a little better at walking.

 

I'm also Walking to Rivendell (for the second time! First time out, I got all the way to Lorien, but I've decided to start over, since that was a few years ago and from before I had all the pain issues) - Right now I'm just past the village of Bree (Highly recommend the hard cider at the Prancing Pony, by the way) My next milestone is Weathertop, some 170 more miles. It is appropriate that I will be crossing the midgewater marshes, because I live in the swamp southeast of Houston. It's mosquito-ey around here.

 

My primary exercises are walking and gentle yoga (and swimming when I can find a pool) and I'm an active meditator, to help deal with mental illness as well as the chronic pain.

 

I'm only setting myself three goals, with one stretch goal just to see how far I get, since this is just the beginning.

 

  • Walk 6 days a week - but only so far and so fast as my joints allow. Walking 1 mile gets the same credit as walking 5 for this challenge, because I've promised my doctor that I will exercise daily, regardless of pain. This means some days I don't get very far, but its the going that counts.
  • Stretch/yoga at least 20 minutes after every walk, and at least 30 minutes on any days when walking is impossible. This helps reduce joint inflammation, and decreases my recovery time.
  • Meditate at least 20 minutes, at least 3 times a week.

Major Edit: After seeing my Rheumatologist, I need to adjust my goals to better match what he thinks I need and what I am able to do with my pain/exhaustion levels. These are my adjusted goals:

 

  • Walk 4 days a week, no more than 2 miles on a weeknight. Weekends are for longer walks. As with before, no set distance is required.
  • Stretch/yoga at least 20 minutes after every walk, but gently
  • Meditate at least 20 minutes every weeknight

I'm not setting a speed goal for the walking just yet, but eventually I'll be varying walking speeds depending on pain levels as well. Also depending on how god damn hot it is here, since I live in Texas. Still, it's good to exercise outside, even if this is the most miserable time of year to do so, right?

 

My stretch goal is related to the Walk to Rivendell - I'm not sure how realistic it is, but if I say I'm going to average 10 miles a week, then my stretch goal is to go 60 miles over the next six weeks. I don't know right now if my pain levels will decrease (which will increase my mileage) or increase (which means I won't go as far) so this isn't an official goal - but we'll see how far I get.

 

I'll try to post at least weekly updates here on my progress. I'm two weeks into a promised "exercise daily for one month" with the Rheumatologist, and so far I only had to truly miss one day! Here's hoping a little bit of community support will help keep me on track.

Level 3 Human Druid

[sTR: 3] [DEX:8] [sTA:5] [CON:9] [WIS:8] [CHA:2]

Previous Challenge Thread: A Wild Anna Appears

Current Challenge Thread: Just one Anna, Just TWO challenges!

Walking to Lothlorien: On the road south of Rivendell

Twitter: @justanna

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Hey Anna!  Good luck with the challenges. <3

Moose, level 1 human adventurer-in-training

STR 1 | DEX 1 | STA 1 | CON 4 | WIS 5.5 | CHA 3.5

My 6WC Thread:  http://rebellion.nerdfitness.com/index.php?/topic/29184-moose004-in-which-our-hero-is-sent-to-kill-10-rats/

Rogue Eight, standing by:  http://rebellion.nerdfitness.com/index.php?/topic/30495-rogue-squadron/

 

Runkeeper:  http://runkeeper.com/user/moose004 | Weighttraining.com:  http://www.weighttraining.com/users/moose004

Twitter - @Linedan

 

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Hey Anna!

 

Looks great- it's really wonderful that you are both dedicated to pushing yourself and taking care of yourself. Can't wait to see how you progress!

Race: Gallifreyan

Profession: Druid

Level: 6

Current Challenge:Livingroovy Comes Home

 

[sTR] - 16.8 // [DEX] - 12.25 // [sTA] - 16 // [CON] - 17.3 // [WIS] - 16.55 // [CHA] - 14.6

 

Find me on the internets: Facebook // Twitter // Kate Marolt | Play Warrior & Excitement Engineer!

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Hey,

welcome here!

When I read the title I had to think of throwing some pokeballs :P

Being outside in the nature is always good. Especially when you feel being a Druid...

Good luck!

Fate whispers to the warrior: "You cannot withstand the storm."

 The warrior whispers back:
 "
I am the storm."

 

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I'd love to find a way to meditate outside, but I am sadly a suburban Druid, and it is impossible to find a time outside (when I am not at work) that I won't be serenaded by lawnmowers, weed whackers, leaf blowers, edgers, and the occasional chain saw. Also people getting roofs replaced, though that's slowing down now that it's hot.

 

So I meditate inside. I'd say it's terrible, but at least there's air conditioning!

 

I walked 2 miles last night, and did 30 minutes of stretching - and unfortunately am working from home today because I need the big pain meds to deal with how I'm feeling today. I will try to do just one mile today.

Level 3 Human Druid

[sTR: 3] [DEX:8] [sTA:5] [CON:9] [WIS:8] [CHA:2]

Previous Challenge Thread: A Wild Anna Appears

Current Challenge Thread: Just one Anna, Just TWO challenges!

Walking to Lothlorien: On the road south of Rivendell

Twitter: @justanna

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One mile today, and 30 minutes of gentle yoga. It's really hard to get motivated to do something that I know is going to cause me to have more pain, but I hope my doctor is right and that it will start to get better. I'm going to do my meditation tonight after my shower and before bed. I find I meditate best while lying on the floor, instead of sitting (easier on sore hips/SI joint), so I'll start with that.

Level 3 Human Druid

[sTR: 3] [DEX:8] [sTA:5] [CON:9] [WIS:8] [CHA:2]

Previous Challenge Thread: A Wild Anna Appears

Current Challenge Thread: Just one Anna, Just TWO challenges!

Walking to Lothlorien: On the road south of Rivendell

Twitter: @justanna

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Your goals are like mine, not grandiose but moderate and realistic. I live with fibromyalgia so I can relate to living with chronic pain. I understand what it's like to know that I need to exercise to build strength and endurance or to trigger an endorphin rush to combat my overactive nerves. Yoga and walking have been the best for me. I love the walking to Rivendell concept, I'll have to look into that.

 

I've been a yoga fanatic for awhile, so if you'd like to compare notes sometime, I am game!

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Hi there! I feel we have very similar goals, as I too struggle with chronic pain. Walking does wonders for me, but sometimes I feel like if I can't do more than that - then what's the point? It's a terrible attitude and one I've been working to change.

Also, when I meditate - I tend to get flustered because sitting like that hurts my back, so I will try laying down like you and see if that helps.

Good luck with your goals!

PS - I love your owl icon :)

Spoiler

PREVIOUS CHALLENGES

2013: 6/1/13 - 7/24/13 - 9/15/13 - 11/6/13   2014: 1/5/142/19/14 - 4/9/14 - 6/6/14 - 7/24/14 - 9/11/14 - 11/5/14 

2015: 1/2/15 - 2/20/15 - 4/9/15 - 6/2/15 - 9/10/15 - 10/26/15   2016: 1/1/16 - 2/28/16 - 3/28/16 - 6/6/16 - 9/19/16 - 10/26/16 - 11/26/16   

2017: 1/1/17 - 9/17/17   2018: 1/1/18 - 2/5/18 - 8/13/18 - 11/26/18   2019: 1/7/19   2020: 9/13/20

 

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You know, just like Micabug, my flatmate also has fibromyalgia while I have unidentified joint pains. 

The yoga and calisthenics should help greatly in keeping your body in place :)

 

I've never heard of the Walk to Rivendell and after googling it, I still couldn't figure out the major details. Anybody want to give me a basic rundown?

 

Also, you're awesome!

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I've never heard of the Walk to Rivendell and after googling it, I still couldn't figure out the major details. Anybody want to give me a basic rundown?

 

Also, you're awesome!

 

The Walk to Rivendell is just that - you walk, run, bike, swim, or exercise your way along with Frodo's Journey to Rivendell (or Bilbo's journey to the Lonely Mountain). Many people make it to Rivendell and keep going, walking the whole of the Lord of the Rings journey, since that whole trip takes place (almost) entirely on foot. For non-walking exercise of moderate intensity, give yourself a mile for every 20 minutes of work (some people do that for things like swimming, since it's a LOT more work to swim 458 miles than it is to walk it!) - that way you can take credit for things like moderate intensity yoga, and this is how I give myself "credit" for completing my doctor's reqired stretching exercises.

 

The basic information from the original Eowyn Challenge can be found here: http://home.insightbb.com/~eowynchallenge/Walk/walk.html

That's the basic website to get started. I've input all the milestones from Hobbiton to Rivendell (the first 458 miles) into a spreadsheet that I'd be happy to send anyone - I can send it in either LiberOffice or Excel format. I used the free font Bilbo Hand for it (http://www.dafont.com/bilbo-hand.font), so you might want to download that if you want my spreadsheet to LOOK really cool, but it will work with plain fonts as well. It breaks down how many miles per day, as well as where you are on the challenge, based on the milestones provided here: http://home.insightbb.com/~eowynchallenge/Tools/Bag_end/bag_end.html I'm also part of the Walk to Rivendell Yahoo Group (http://health.groups.yahoo.com/group/walktorivendell/ ) but it's been rather quiet lately. They do challenges based on the time of year it is and what was happening in Middle Earth during that time, similar to NerdFitness challenges, with goals and progress updates.

 

I've done the walk before, when I was in college and just after (and before I had chronic pain) and made it all the way to Lorien, but when I started exercising again this year, I decided to start over, since there are more frequent milestones at the beginning of the journey.

Level 3 Human Druid

[sTR: 3] [DEX:8] [sTA:5] [CON:9] [WIS:8] [CHA:2]

Previous Challenge Thread: A Wild Anna Appears

Current Challenge Thread: Just one Anna, Just TWO challenges!

Walking to Lothlorien: On the road south of Rivendell

Twitter: @justanna

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Hi there! I feel we have very similar goals, as I too struggle with chronic pain. Walking does wonders for me, but sometimes I feel like if I can't do more than that - then what's the point? It's a terrible attitude and one I've been working to change.

Also, when I meditate - I tend to get flustered because sitting like that hurts my back, so I will try laying down like you and see if that helps.

Good luck with your goals!

PS - I love your owl icon :)

 

Thank you! He's from the Pixar Short "Boundin'" which I watch when I'm feeling really down. (http://vimeo.com/45732240 )

 

I totally get the walking thing. It's a form of self judgment, that if I can "only" do these small things, why bother, when other people are out deadlifting things and running marathons and whatnot. Still, I know that the exercise is good for me, and it's just a matter of doing what I'm capable of, in this body that I have, and how it's feeling today. If today is a slow, 1 mile walk - that's what today is. If today is a moderate pace and I'm up for doing  a full 4 mile circuit of the green belt, then that's what I do (if time permits). Some days gentle yoga and stretching is all I can do. (I sound a lot more at peace about this than I really am, it's something I continually struggle with. I try to keep a good attitude, but it's really hard!)

 

As for laying down in meditation, I find if I lay flat on my back, as in shavasana, sometimes it bothers my lower back, so I will bend my knees up, set my feet a little wider than hip length apart, and let my knees fall in and relax against each other. (I hope that makes sense) - both seem to work equally well to get me in a good, relaxed mindstate, but I'm also less likely to fall asleep with my knees bent!

Level 3 Human Druid

[sTR: 3] [DEX:8] [sTA:5] [CON:9] [WIS:8] [CHA:2]

Previous Challenge Thread: A Wild Anna Appears

Current Challenge Thread: Just one Anna, Just TWO challenges!

Walking to Lothlorien: On the road south of Rivendell

Twitter: @justanna

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Did 3 miles last night, and I'm not sure that was my wisest plan. Joints are ticked off this morning, espeically my hips and wrists/hands. Still, I managed all three of my checklists.

Level 3 Human Druid

[sTR: 3] [DEX:8] [sTA:5] [CON:9] [WIS:8] [CHA:2]

Previous Challenge Thread: A Wild Anna Appears

Current Challenge Thread: Just one Anna, Just TWO challenges!

Walking to Lothlorien: On the road south of Rivendell

Twitter: @justanna

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Way to go for doing 3 miles!  I only get about a mile and a half...but I do set the incline so I get some vertical feet.  At least that way I can pretend I am hiking in the mountains.  Haha!  Have you ever tried using a foam roller to help stretch out your hips/back when you start to feel achy?  I bought mine for around $25 bucks and it was the best thing I have found for enhancing my stretches and it also helps allieviate some of the pain too! 

Spoiler

PREVIOUS CHALLENGES

2013: 6/1/13 - 7/24/13 - 9/15/13 - 11/6/13   2014: 1/5/142/19/14 - 4/9/14 - 6/6/14 - 7/24/14 - 9/11/14 - 11/5/14 

2015: 1/2/15 - 2/20/15 - 4/9/15 - 6/2/15 - 9/10/15 - 10/26/15   2016: 1/1/16 - 2/28/16 - 3/28/16 - 6/6/16 - 9/19/16 - 10/26/16 - 11/26/16   

2017: 1/1/17 - 9/17/17   2018: 1/1/18 - 2/5/18 - 8/13/18 - 11/26/18   2019: 1/7/19   2020: 9/13/20

 

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Way to go for doing 3 miles!  I only get about a mile and a half...but I do set the incline so I get some vertical feet.  At least that way I can pretend I am hiking in the mountains.  Haha!  Have you ever tried using a foam roller to help stretch out your hips/back when you start to feel achy?  I bought mine for around $25 bucks and it was the best thing I have found for enhancing my stretches and it also helps allieviate some of the pain too! 

 

Mine isn't a muscle pain problem - or even a flexibility problem. The pain is actually deep within the socket of my hip joint itself (as opposed to, say, hip flexor muscle pain, which I also get, but which I stretch to alleviate). I actually have to be careful that I dont stretch TOO MUCH, because my joints are so flexible i can actually injure myself doing it if I'm not careful. (for reference, my knees bend backwards enough that if I sit with my legs stretched out in front of me, you can lift my feet a foot off the ground before my knees even get close to locking, and I can partially dislocate my hips and shoulders at will.)

 

I do use a tennis ball to roll out muscle aches though, it really does help. Massage helps my hands as well, and I use an arnica cream to help with some of the pain in my finger joints. (yes, my hands/wrists hurt when I exercise, even if "exercise" is walking - which has nothing to do with my hands. it's ... well, it makes no sense, but there you go.)

Level 3 Human Druid

[sTR: 3] [DEX:8] [sTA:5] [CON:9] [WIS:8] [CHA:2]

Previous Challenge Thread: A Wild Anna Appears

Current Challenge Thread: Just one Anna, Just TWO challenges!

Walking to Lothlorien: On the road south of Rivendell

Twitter: @justanna

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Another 3 miles today, plus 20 minutes of stretching. I got to walk with my friend today (she's a teacher, so now that school is out I have a walking buddy). Sustained a 17.5 minute mile pace for 3 miles as well, which is a little faster than I had been going recently.

 

Also? I got to walk in a thunderstorm, which made it MUCH less hot. It was over 100 degrees here this afternoon, so even at 5:30 when I was walking it was still pretty hot. The storm was nice!

 

Still having a fairly substantial amount of pain, both during my walks and after.

Level 3 Human Druid

[sTR: 3] [DEX:8] [sTA:5] [CON:9] [WIS:8] [CHA:2]

Previous Challenge Thread: A Wild Anna Appears

Current Challenge Thread: Just one Anna, Just TWO challenges!

Walking to Lothlorien: On the road south of Rivendell

Twitter: @justanna

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Another 3 miles today, plus 20 minutes of stretching. I got to walk with my friend today (she's a teacher, so now that school is out I have a walking buddy). Sustained a 17.5 minute mile pace for 3 miles as well, which is a little faster than I had been going recently.

 

Also? I got to walk in a thunderstorm, which made it MUCH less hot. It was over 100 degrees here this afternoon, so even at 5:30 when I was walking it was still pretty hot. The storm was nice!

 

Still having a fairly substantial amount of pain, both during my walks and after.

 

Sorry to hear about the pain, but it sounds like the walk itself was nice. Happy that you had a friend to walk with today. My fiancee left for a Haydn Festival in Oklahoma this morning so now the dog is my partner in crime. Looking forward to having her back for our night walks.

 

We had a good bit of rain here as well. We're having a front just before Andrea comes up to greet us here in NC.

Class: Druid

Race: Half-Elf

STR:3  DEX:2  STA:2  CON:2  WIS:4  CHA:2  

Current 6 Week Challenge

 

Trying to maintain my blissful ignorance about the world. Wasn't it better when fairy tales were real?

 

  ~ Emanluke

 

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Sorry to hear about the pain, but it sounds like the walk itself was nice. Happy that you had a friend to walk with today. My fiancee left for a Haydn Festival in Oklahoma this morning so now the dog is my partner in crime. Looking forward to having her back for our night walks.

 

We had a good bit of rain here as well. We're having a front just before Andrea comes up to greet us here in NC.

 

I've thought about finding a dog around here I can borrow for walks - ther'es something that just makes walking more fun when you're walking with a dog. (But I can't in good conscience get a dog - between commute and work hours, I'm gone 12 hours a day, and I work too far away to come home to let a dog out mid-day. Just not a good life for a dog!) Still, someday I'll have a pup to walk!

 

Good luck with Andrea - she probably won't be too much a threat by then, but those storms always make me nervous. While our (then) apartment took no damage from Ike, we didn't have power or running water for almost a month, so I don't mess around with hurricanes anymore!

Level 3 Human Druid

[sTR: 3] [DEX:8] [sTA:5] [CON:9] [WIS:8] [CHA:2]

Previous Challenge Thread: A Wild Anna Appears

Current Challenge Thread: Just one Anna, Just TWO challenges!

Walking to Lothlorien: On the road south of Rivendell

Twitter: @justanna

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Hi Anna! The Walk to Rivendell sounds like a BLAST! A challenging one mind you, but still that is awesome! I love your plan for this challenge. Also, I wonder if maybe you could ask around at some animal shelters if you could volunteer walking dogs on days that you have off. It is a thought...the worst they can say is no.

Lvl 1 Elven Minotaur Druid
Str: 3 |Dex: 1 |Sta: 4 |Con: 3 |Wis: 2 |Cha: 2

"We have done the impossible, and that makes us mighty." Capt Malcolm Reynolds

"When you do something, you should burn yourself up completely, like a good bonfire, leaving no trace of yourself", Shunryu Suzuki

"Why do we fall down, Bruce? So we can learn to pick ourselves up again." Thomas Wayne

My second-ish challenge: http://rebellion.nerdfitness.com/index.php?/topic/29825-harness-rebooted/
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I've thought about finding a dog around here I can borrow for walks - ther'es something that just makes walking more fun when you're walking with a dog. (But I can't in good conscience get a dog - between commute and work hours, I'm gone 12 hours a day, and I work too far away to come home to let a dog out mid-day. Just not a good life for a dog!) Still, someday I'll have a pup to walk!

 

Good luck with Andrea - she probably won't be too much a threat by then, but those storms always make me nervous. While our (then) apartment took no damage from Ike, we didn't have power or running water for almost a month, so I don't mess around with hurricanes anymore!

 

While I was off at college, one of my friend's housemates (who eventually became a friend) had dogs that she would let me walk. Great dane, pit bull, and an Australian shepherd made for interesting walks - never at the same time, I valued my wrists and arms too much!

Class: Druid

Race: Half-Elf

STR:3  DEX:2  STA:2  CON:2  WIS:4  CHA:2  

Current 6 Week Challenge

 

Trying to maintain my blissful ignorance about the world. Wasn't it better when fairy tales were real?

 

  ~ Emanluke

 

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Yeah - my neighbor has two golden retrievers, but I'm not sure how well behaved they are on leashes.

 

Taking today off from walking. My hips are pretty sore, I'm still fighting this persistent exhaustion, and it's Friday. Stretching and meditation only for me today. I'll get up in the morning and see if I can do a full 4 mile circuit.

Level 3 Human Druid

[sTR: 3] [DEX:8] [sTA:5] [CON:9] [WIS:8] [CHA:2]

Previous Challenge Thread: A Wild Anna Appears

Current Challenge Thread: Just one Anna, Just TWO challenges!

Walking to Lothlorien: On the road south of Rivendell

Twitter: @justanna

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Humbug. Taking a "forced" rest day today, because it's pouring rain. I'm dedicated to walking, but not dedicated enough to walk during a real thunderstorm. If it clears out later I may get a quick mile or two in after dinner. Otherwise, I think it's just going to be stretching and meditation for me today. I need one more meditation to get to four for this week (and exceed my goal by one) so I'm shooting for that, in between all my usual Sunday chores.

 

 

Level 3 Human Druid

[sTR: 3] [DEX:8] [sTA:5] [CON:9] [WIS:8] [CHA:2]

Previous Challenge Thread: A Wild Anna Appears

Current Challenge Thread: Just one Anna, Just TWO challenges!

Walking to Lothlorien: On the road south of Rivendell

Twitter: @justanna

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I'm just now getting to your thread. I've got some hypermobility issues, too - nothing diagnosed, and not as bad as yours. But I can do some pretty grotesque party tricks involving getting linked hands over my head. I started doing the Nerd Fitness exercises about a year ago, and can say that joints supported by strong muscles are MUCH happier than loosey-goosey ones. It's hard to get started, and you'll have to watch your form like a hawk - but SO worth it!

Wandern
Wood Elf Druid
Level 10
STR 15 | DEX 19 | STA 18 | CON 16 | WIS 22 | CHA 20
Current Challenge: Focuses on Fitness 

Old Challenges 1110 9 876543, 2, 1

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