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Jothra Conquers the Universe: Into the Daylight

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Intro thread! | Story thread!


I know I'm late starting this challenge,‭ ‬but I have this weird feeling that if I don't start now,‭ ‬it might be harder to make myself do it later.


The number on my scale doesn't give me the initiative I'm going to need. I want my activity level back to the wonderful heights I hit four years ago, and I want to eat less junk food. If I do these things, the weight should start neutralizing itself.

Many of my‭ ‬lapsed‭ ‬hobbies are either active outdoor pursuits,‭ ‬or‭ ‬cartooning and writing related.‭ ‬It's time I focused on the‭ ‬active ones for awhile.‭ ‬Strengthening the‭ ‬artistic ones can come later.

My Quest for Challenge‭ ‬1:

  • I want to hit the magic‭ ‬10,000‭ ‬steps number‭ ‬(wherever it came from‭) ‬every day,‭ ‬without fail.‭ ‬I have a three-day-old Fitbit One,‭ ‬so I'd better take advantage.‭ ‬I'm a teacher,‭ ‬and‭ ‬one who spends most of every day on his feet,‭ ‬but that doesn't even get me halfway there.‭ ‬This should be an easy one,‭ ‬as long as I can make myself get off my duff and do it.‭
  • Do something active,‭ ‬above and beyond the step counter,‭ five days a week.‭ ‬Bicycling‭? ‬Ideal‭! ‬Stationary bicycle‭? ‬If I have to‭! ‬Running‭? ‬Well...maybe I'll save that for the next challenge.‭ ‬Lifting weights‭? ‬It's not my favourite,‭ ‬but I always feel good when I'm done.‭ ‬All of this will make it into MyFitnessPal,‭ ‬which will in turn share it with the Fitbit.
  • ‬Watch what I stuff in my craw.‭ ‬Do I really need those Smarties‭? ‬Probably not.‭ ‬Do I really need to make that much pasta‭? ‬I doubt I'll even finish it if I try‭! ‬I make my own meals anyway,‭ ‬so I'll just start watching them a little more carefully.‭ ‬I'll use MyFitnessPal,‭ ‬linked to my Fitbit,‭ ‬to make sure I'm hovering around zero remaining net calories per day.

Pass/fail,‭ ‬kid‭!

Here we go‭!

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Why a picture of a Flash Gordon-era slurpasaur? Find out in the story thread!


Day 1 was pretty simple, though it was a lot of work. Since it's Easter break, I didn't have my job to get me moving around, so after an hour-long bike ride, I took an 8000 step walk. I was going to finish the stepping goal in Wii Fit (probably in Island Cycling or something), but it was way too nice out, so I braved the slurpasaurs again.


Fitbit Numbers (the ones most related to my goals, anyway):

Steps: 10,285

Floors Climbed: 10/10

Very Active Minutes: 87/30

Calories In/Out: 2568/3542


Other Activity:

Bicycling: 00:56:17

AVS: 25.28 km/h

MXS: 42.11 km/h

Av. Cadence: 60 (I know, I know...I'm a gear masher. I should really try spinning faster.)


I was on a nearby highway that rarely sees any traffic, so I played Zombies, Run!, which works perfectly well whilst on a bicycle. In my head, I heard "slurpasaur" instead of "zombie" the entire time, because sometimes my brain is like that.



This is how I look every single time I finish a mission in ZR.

Even when, like today, I do it in broad daylight.

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You can tell I don't draw bicycles too often. Yeesh.


I spent most of Day 2 out of town. Before I left, I walked from my house to the grocery store. It's only about a kilometre and a half, so I promised myself when I moved in September that I would never, ever drive from my house to Market Street, when I have a perfectly good road bike and a perfectly good winterized mountain bike. So far I have not broken this rule a single time.


On my trip, I brought my road bike, and meant to ride it longer. Unfortunately, an annoying creak from my shoe cleats prompted me to cut it short. I think I just needed to tighten the SPD. For good measure, I oiled it as well.


Fitbit Numbers (It really does call me WESSLEEY. I call it "Mr. B."):


Steps: 10,090

Floors Climbed: 9/10

Very Active Minutes: 56/30

Calories In/Out: 2657/3407 (Mr. B. says I'm "in the zone". I'm going to assume that's not a euphemism.)


Other Activity:

Bicycling: 00:30:02

AVS: 24.74 km/h

MXS: 32.64 km/h

Av. Cadence: 58 (I spent too much time either messing around with my left foot/pedal interface or slowing for cars with their brights on.)

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Today, I forgot the first rule of cycling over wet train tracks: 90 degrees, idiot. Anyway, I managed to tank it on some tracks that I honestly forgot were even there. It's more than a little embarrassing. Fortunately, the bike just needs some new bar tape, and I just need to be nice to my bruised upper thigh.


That's what happens when you leave while it's snowing, and bike in an area you rarely visit, in another town, without using your tiny cyclist brain.


Anyway, I was 3000 steps below my walking goal, because I had only made 5000 before I flew ass over teakettle. I managed almost a couple thousand more after I was ready to walk again, but then midnight hit, and the Fitbit started logging them for the next day instead.


To make up for it, I minimized calorie consumption in the evening.


And you know what? Accident or not, it was actually a pretty nice bike ride. So there is that.


Fitbit Numbers (Mr. B. also gained a cosmetic scratch, but it's fine):

Steps: 6,782

Floors Climbed: 30/10 (walking up and down my parents' stairs, over and over, which hurt like crazy go nuts at first, but helped me loosen the leg back out)

Very Active Minutes: 46/30

Calories In/Out: 2301/3060


Other Activity:

Bicycling: 00:29:17

AVS: 23.03 km/h

MXS: 33.03 km/h

Av. Cadence: 59 (Not surprising.)


I should be back on for proper walking tomorrow. Of course, I'll let you know if that changes for any reason.

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awesome jog despite the stack heh heh

I haven't ridden a bike since i was 12, I wonder if it is as they say "like riding a bicycle" :)

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Level 1 Adventurer

Race: Human/Hobbit

Current stats: STR-1  DEX-1  STA-2  CON-1  WIS-2  CHA-3

Current Challenge

"Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own." Matthew 6:34


Distance to Rivendell

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Another old man! Yikes!


My leg feels much better today, and my elbow and thumb are just about back to a slightly (and temporarily) uglier version of normal. I don't actually have Leg Stuff: For Legs. DO NOT USE ON NOT LEGS in my possession, but it was nothing some old-fashioned, normal painkillers couldn't handle. I don't like taking them, but sleep is awesome, and so are working quads.


Fitbit Numbers:

Steps: 11,045

Floors Climbed: 14/10

Very Active Minutes: 64/30

Calories In/Out: 2621/3441


Other Activity:

Bicycling: 00:24:38

AVS: 26.73 km/h

MXS: 43.65 km/h

Av. Cadence: 61 (slightly better...ish?)


I cut the ride a bit short, because my leg was getting tired. Surprisingly, it didn't hurt any more than before when the ride was finished, which is nice.


I had already made half my steps at a library book sale this afternoon, so I killed the rest with a walk to the convenience store.

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I've nailed today's goals, but I'm back to work tomorrow, so I'll be long asleep before my Fitbit numbers are finalized. I'll post those, along with a picture of an improbable fish person (?) tomorrow. Fun!


As for the bike ride this afternoon, I split it into two parts: the part into a headwind, and the part with a tailwind. Keep in mind these are the exact same route in opposite directions. The only major variable is the wind.


Bicycling: 00:19:01

AVS: 22.28 km/h

MXS: 30.71 km/h

Av. Cadence: 61 (not bad, for me)


Bicycling: 00:11:09

AVS: 37.79 km/h

MXS: 46.75 km/h

Av. Cadence: 68 (I did some stretching when I got home. My legs sure needed it.)

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Hello, internet! My return is both something and whatever!


Finally, yesterday's Fitbit numbers! It was lightly raining which makes everything more fun, unless you are a melting witch-person.


Fitbit Numbers:

Steps: 10,557

Floors Climbed: 14/10

Very Active Minutes: 59/30

Calories In/Out: 2491/3337


My extra activities are, of course, listed above.


My numbers will be more accurate (while still allowing me to sleep sometimes like at all) if I report next-day from now on. So I will. More posting tomorrow!


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Nice wings. Are they corrugated?


I didn't actually meet any hoopy Bird People yesterday, but I did go for a nice ride down the highway to Nanton. Unlike the city in the story, Nanton isn't very mysterious. It is, however, about 50km away, and is full of cool antique stores, so I think I'll bike there one of these days (once I'm sure I'll be able to get back).



A mysterious city? Now we're talking!


Anyway, Fitbit and other!


Fitbit Numbers:

Steps: 11,902

Floors Climbed: 32/10 (mostly these were actually hills)

Very Active Minutes: 94/30

Calories In/Out: 3498/4311


Other Activities

Bicycling (away, very slight tailwind): 00:32:35

AVS: 29.07 km/h

MXS: 45.20 km/h

Av. Cadence: 71 (I tried spinning faster, and I think it meant fresher legs at the end, so hooray!)


Bicycling (Back home, then past it into Vulcan for batteries, then back home again): 00:49.18

AVS: 24.29 km/h

MXS: 45.97 km/h

Av. Cadence: 66


Before I knew I was only making half of the magically recommended 10,000 steps per day, I was having trouble keeping calorie counts in budget. Between the walking and the cycling, I'm actually making larger meals than before to meet Mr. B. the Fitbit's suggested calorie levels (especially since I'm avoiding a lot of junk food). Exciting!

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The grey in that sunset was totally a processing accident. I'll take it.


I couldn't sleep, so at 4:58 in the morning I decided to stop trying. Up early, cereal, bike ride, shower, then time to relax before work.


I had an entire highway completely to myself, and all the sunshine I could ask for. Good times.


Fitbit Numbers:

Steps: 10,047

Floors Climbed: 13/10

Very Active Minutes: 69/30

Calories In/Out: 3161/4095


Other Activities

Bicycling (nicest morning in ages!): 00:48:44

AVS: 26.37 km/h

MXS: 49.97 km/h

Av. Cadence: 65

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Have I really been doing this for a week and a half already? Keen!


Awesome job!! you are so active :)

Thank you. Until I started the challenge, I was only barely active, except for riding my bike...and even then, mostly just to the grocery store.


Anyway, I was away from computers for a couple of days, though unfortunately not because I was out jumping into shark-infested waters or longboarding down a volcano or something (guess who finally saw Walter Mitty!). But at least I was still Fitbitting, and my road bike was kicking around.


Fitbit Numbers (for Friday):

Steps: 10,760

Floors Climbed: 2/10

Very Active Minutes: 13/30

Calories In/Out: 2423/3186


This ended up being a "rest day," because I drove to Lethbridge and spent the evening doing bicycle repair (finally fixed my bar tape! Also: new SPDs!) That makes my two open quotation mark rest days close quotation mark for the week (which technically ended Thursday, but for ease of reference I think I'll use Saturday as my end day).


Fitbit Numbers (for Saturday):

Steps: 10,718

Floors Climbed: 30/10

Very Active Minutes: 57/30

Calories In/Out: 2837/3358


Other Activities (for Saturday)

I woke up early, and left for a 42 minute ride at ten to six. It was damp, but the rain didn't start gushing until about three minutes after I got back to my friend's place.

Bicycling (nicest morning in ages!): 00:41:53

AVS: 22.84 km/h

MXS: 48.68 km/h

Av. Cadence: 61


I know it's 1 a.m. on Monday, but I'll still wait until tomorrow to post Sunday, because consistency is the key to consistency, and also because I would like to do some drawings to go with the last couple of posts.

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Ah, rain. Why are you so hard to draw with ink?


I know this is pretty fast on the heels of my last rest day, but it's a new week. Thank goodness I built in that cushion, because I didn't get back into town until after midnight, and I had to get up earlier than usual for work.


Fitbit Numbers (for Sunday):

Steps: 10,356

Floors Climbed: 28/10

Very Active Minutes: 23/30

Calories In/Out: 2108/3006


I hit my step goal, but didn't squeeze in anything else.


Also of note: I can't find my cheap Copic knock-off, so instead of brush pen, this time you get fine-tipped Lamy Safari Al-Star. I love fountain pen lines, but they're a lot less forgiving than thick ol' brush pens (especially when you're not pencilling first). Incidentally, pen and ink aren't the world's easiest medium for conveying rain. Nope.

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A Fish Queen bearing gifts? This sounds like a job for the Story Thread!


I know I said I'd stick to posting next-day, but I'm awake anyway, and I want to prove (mostly to myself) that I'm not slacking off. I'm enjoying myself too much to stop now.


Fitbit Numbers (for Monday):

Steps: 11,085

Floors Climbed: 20/10

Very Active Minutes: 52/30

Calories In/Out: 2858/3644


Other Activities (for Monday)

Cold rain. My new mini-backpack (the Shimano U6) is, as it happens, reasonably water resistant.

Bicycling (nicest morning in ages!): 00:34:49

AVS: 26.24 km/h

MXS: 37.86 km/h

Av. Cadence: 65 (not bad for not being able to see the cyclometer at all in the dark, eh?)


After the bike ride, I went for a nice walk to make up the last of my steps. The rain wasn't the pleasant warm kind I like to play in, but I still really enjoyed myself.


This picture was done with a fine-tipped "Pen & Ink | Sketch" cartridge pen. It's not my favourite with which to write, but it just may be my favourite with which to draw.

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Some kind of deadly small dromeosaurs...wearing little hats?


I guess it isn't that weird, but as I wander around the neighbourhood after dark, there are never any other walkers. I saw a guy walk from his front door to his car once, but all he did was grab something from the front seat, the stare at me with a creepy The 'Burbs expression on his face as he went back inside.


Tonight there were three kids dressed in hilariously stereotypical teen clothes walking the other way. One of them said "Yo, wha'up." I replied with "Hey."


It was the best of times, it was the worst of times. (The most famous comma splice of all time? I'll leave it to you.)


Anyway, Tuesday numbers!


Fitbit Numbers (for Tuesday):

Steps: 10,591

Floors Climbed: 20/10

Very Active Minutes: 49/30

Calories In/Out: 2555/3538


Other Activities (for Tuesday)

Shorter ride today! I wasn't sure I would make it to the grocery store in time if I didn't cut it short. I made it. Barely.

Bicycling: 00:19:19

AVS: 24.98 km/h

MXS: 34.96 km/h

Av. Cadence: 70


Today's picture was drawn with my heavily modified Cross Aventura cartridge pen. It's the only cartridge pen I've ever found that can run legit India ink without clogging. By all accounts, this pen is impossible.

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"Hey, stop that! You aren't even real pterosaurs! Pterosaurs didn't have any teeth!"


I've never been attacked by weird, toothed pterosaurs like the ones above, but from 2007-2009, twice per ride (on the way out and the way back), I would get viciously attacked by a red winged blackbird. He ineffectually scrabbled at the back of my helmet, which he thought was another red winged blackbird. He would scream shrilly, throwing his hilariously tiny bulk repeatedly against my head.

One day, he figured out he could reach a toe just far enough into one of the rear vent holes to rake my hair so it stuck out of the back of my helmet. I could tell he thought he was disemboweling me, because you have never heard such a triumphant flurry of bird noise in your entire life.
I miss that guy. We were bros, even if he did want me dead.
Fitbit Numbers (for Wednesday):
Steps: 10,471
Floors Climbed: 35/10
Very Active Minutes: 81/30
Calories In/Out: 2621/3818
Other Activities (for Wednesday)
No wind at all! Marvy!
Bicycling: 00:56:19
AVS: 26.44 km/h
MXS: 38.44 km/h
Av. Cadence: 68

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One day, he figured out he could reach a toe just far enough into one of the rear vent holes to rake my hair so it stuck out of the back of my helmet. I could tell he thought he was disemboweling me, because you have never heard such a triumphant flurry of bird noise in your entire life.


I miss that guy. We were bros, even if he did want me dead.




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You haven't seen my Final Form

I Stand With Gina Carano

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Jothra likes heights, but this is just silly.


Thursday was a pretty ordinary day until about 6:00 p.m. or so, when I decided that, headwind or no, I was going cycling. I headed into a pretty fierce wind, and worked really hard for "half an hour, and then the time to the top of the next hill", which turned out to be less than two and a half minutes later. A deal's a deal, so I stopped to enter my data on my phone...and the wind calmed down to next to nothing.




But whatever. Obviously I was committed, and even without a freaky nice tailwind, the way back would be a whole lot easier than the way there, so why not?


I worked my butt off on the way back, and even spent some extra time biking through town, just to make sure I had Jell-O legs when I got home. It was totally awesome.


Fitbit Numbers (for Thursday):
Steps: 12,103
Floors Climbed: 16/10
Very Active Minutes: 94/30
Calories In/Out: 3073/4083
Other Activities (for Thursday)

Bicycling (big headwind, way out): 00:32:28
AVS: 22.10 km/h
MXS: 39.21 km/h
Av. Cadence: 65


Bicycling (Pitiful tailwind, way back plus Vulcan): 00:31:42
AVS: 30.19 km/h
MXS: 50.61 km/h
Av. Cadence: 66 (even in less-than-peak condition, my calves are deadly beef monsters, so I tend to go faster if I mash gears like I'm trying to punch holes in the ground)


Bicycling Total (averaged together): 01:04:00
AVS: 26.15 km/h
MXS: 50.61 km/h
Av. Cadence: 65.5


Oh, yeah, and I had a 12" Cold Cut Combo from Subway after, because otherwise I would have had trouble cramming down enough calories without horking back a bunch of cookies or something.

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Well, this is suboptimal.


In the spirit of that well-know adage "any crash you walk away from is a good one", here's a short, not-very-thematic anecdote, because I like the sound of my own voice (even in print form).


     When I was in Grade 8, my class (the whole thing, because there were only 43 of us in Grade 8) went on a hiking/bicycling trip to Jasper National Park. I was on bike squad, because...well, because I was, that's why.

     The rental bikes were a mess of mechanicals. One guy got a snakebite one minute out from the trailhead. One guy had a pedal come off. One girl's saddle tried valiantly to escape, but she obviously went back for it.

     The route wasn't well-marked, either. The only reason we didn't end up lost forever or eaten by bears or something is because a friend and I found some recent-looking bicycle tracks heading down the right-hand fork.

     Anyway, the mechanicals and poor signage aren't really the point. I was at the top of a pretty steep hill. I love steep hills, because as a broadly built viking-type person, I have it all my own way going down hills. I started bombing that thing like a boss.

     Suddenly, I heard a volley of shouts from the bottom of the hill, and noticed that one of the guys down there was covered in mud.


     It turns out that wasn't shade from the trees at the bottom of the hill; it was a deep pool of thick mud. My bike made it a couple of feet, then froze solid in place like it was stuck in cement. I, on the other hand, kept going at approximately warp 7.

     Before I had time to think, I found myself sitting back against a tree, coated from head to toe in black mud, staring at my still-upright bicycle. Me knee (I think it was my left?) was already swelling and stiffening, though there was very little blood.

     The rest of the story isn't very exciting, but I did have to bike more-or-less one-legged the rest of the way back to the townsite. The knee recovered 100%, though they did have to tap 22 cm3 of blood out of it first. Good times for a 14-year-old.


Friday was a rest day, because I ended up taking a nap after work, and then travelling to Lethbridge in the afternoon. I already happen to know Saturday was not a rest day, so I' still on target for my weekly goals.


Fitbit Numbers (for Friday):
Steps: 10,043
Floors Climbed: 5/10
Very Active Minutes: 12/30
Calories In/Out: 2179/3062

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