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Theophilus Accelerates His Life


theophilus

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With a moderately successful recruit challenge under my belt, I’m ready to join my kind.  Scouts, I’m Theophilus. I come to you an inveterate sloth with a penchant for running, looking to transpose the adjectives. After an eight-year hiatus, I began training in July 2015 for a half marathon in January 2016. My reach goal is to beat my 2008 time (8:16 pace).  Right now I’m in the 9-10 min. pace on my runs, so it’s time to accelerate.

 

Main Quest: Complete the 2016 Phoenix Rock ’n’ Roll Marathon at 8:15 min/mile pace or better

 

Quest 1: Accelerate Pace

Run at least four times per week, keeping with my current training plan mileage with one speed workout per week for the first three weeks (intervals) and two speed workouts per week for the second three weeks (intervals and tempo).

 

Outcome Target: Be able to run three miles at sub-9:00/mile pace by the end of the challenge.

 

Measurement: Pass/Fail. Pass = 8+ speed workouts over next six weeks

 

Quest 2: Accelerate Recovery

When I started running again, I was reminded of just how inflexible I am. I suspect that a misguided doctor may have shortened my calf muscles to theoretically increase my jumping ability. (Never see Dr. Stein, even if he is the best doctor in the country the state Southern California.) To lengthen these muscles again, I’m emphasizing stretching and adding some yoga. I’m committed to doing my regular stretching routing when I run, and adding 1 yoga session per week.

 

Outcome target: N/A

 

Measurement: Pass/Fail. Pass = 22+ stretch routines and 5+ yoga sessions

 

Quest 3: Accelerate Weight Loss

I usually trim out when I start running regularly, and I’m experiencing the same here. But I’m still about 15 lbs above my fighting weight, and I feel every bit of it on my runs. My progress has been stymied by my unfortunate habit of eating out for breakfast and/or lunch during the workday. During this challenge, I will eat breakfast at home and pack a lunch every day. I will make an exception for office-sanctioned special events lunches, but those come so rarely that I do not expect one in the next six weeks.

 

Outcome target: Lose 6 lbs in 6 weeks. Eliminating garbage foods coupled with my running should get me there.

 

Measurement: Pass/fail. Pass = 55+ homemade breakfasts/lunches

 

 

Side Quest: Accelerate Debt Repayment

My wife and I are repaying some consumer and student debt, and really want to make some serious strides over the next year or two. We’ve done the numbers to set a budget, but just need a kick in the pants to stick to it. So, that’s the challenge.

 

Outcome target: If we stick to our budget, by the end of the challenge we’ll have a $500 or so surplus at the end of the challenge. We’ll take that and put it toward debt repayment.

 

Measurement: Pass/Fail. Pass = 5 weeks on budget

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Chapter 25: Theophilus is Mostly Done

Volume 1: Meanderings (2015 - 2020): 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 | 18 | 19 | 20 | 21 | 22 | 23

Volume 2: The Bar and the Bellwether (2021): 24 | 25

 

"May your curse in life be that your hard work is constantly mistaken for talent."

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Days 1 and 2

 

I've run once so far this week, with proper strecthing. A final paper for school has kept me up late, so my morning runs didn't happen today or yesterday, but I finished last night. Will get some speed work in tonight and back on training track tomorrow.

 

I ate out for lunch yesterday at work, so 2 days in and I've already used one of my three allowed. Buckling down for the long haul.

 

Financial goals are on target. Expenses for the rest of the week are covered and we're in at budget.

 

Going to get some of those neat progress bar thingies to track my progress. Stay tuned!

Chapter 25: Theophilus is Mostly Done

Volume 1: Meanderings (2015 - 2020): 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 | 18 | 19 | 20 | 21 | 22 | 23

Volume 2: The Bar and the Bellwether (2021): 24 | 25

 

"May your curse in life be that your hard work is constantly mistaken for talent."

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Welcome Scout!!

Great to have you here.

 

I like the accelerated goals. Have you trained from this level of fitness lately or is this a new starting place for you?

I really did well with my debt/budget goal awhile back, I think it helps to put it on par with the things that are important and fun.

Best of luck with the challenge and getting to know your fellow Scouts!

22nd level Wanderer

better is right here, right now

The Way

Here's to all the 1% increases in life!

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Welcome Scout!!

Great to have you here.

 

I like the accelerated goals. Have you trained from this level of fitness lately or is this a new starting place for you?

I really did well with my debt/budget goal awhile back, I think it helps to put it on par with the things that are important and fun.

Best of luck with the challenge and getting to know your fellow Scouts!

 

Thanks! Looking forward to a challenge with the Scouts!

 

I'm at a similar fitness level as I was when I started training seriously last time, but that was almost a decade ago. Fortunately, I still have age on my side (though I'm losing ground daily...), so I'm hoping to realize similar gains, with the help of a little more intentional training plan.

And yes! Money stuff can feel like such a slog, so I think wrapping it up with something I actually enjoy helps!

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Chapter 25: Theophilus is Mostly Done

Volume 1: Meanderings (2015 - 2020): 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 | 18 | 19 | 20 | 21 | 22 | 23

Volume 2: The Bar and the Bellwether (2021): 24 | 25

 

"May your curse in life be that your hard work is constantly mistaken for talent."

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Your username reminds me of this bit of tastiness ...

 

Now back to your regularly scheduled thread

tumblr_lhyglmshPk1qdseboo1_500.gif

Half-Ork Scout Leader
Running PRs : 5K 24m16s | 10K 53m32s | 15K 1h18m09s | Half Marathon 2h1m44s | Marathon 4h42m2s 
Past Challenges #1 #2 #3 #4 #5 #6 #7 #8 #9 #10 #11 #12 #13  #14 #15 #16 #17 #18 #19 #20 #21 #22
                               #23 #24 #25 #26 #27 #28 #29 #30 #31 #32 #33 #34 #35 #36 #37 
Current Challenge : # 38 Strickland5 respawns

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Your username reminds me of this bit of tastiness ...

 

 

Yes please.

  • Like 1

Chapter 25: Theophilus is Mostly Done

Volume 1: Meanderings (2015 - 2020): 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 | 18 | 19 | 20 | 21 | 22 | 23

Volume 2: The Bar and the Bellwether (2021): 24 | 25

 

"May your curse in life be that your hard work is constantly mistaken for talent."

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9/16/15 - Week 1, Day 3

 

Quest 1:

Late night Tuesday, no run

 

Quest 2:

No run = no stretching

 

Quest 3:

Success on eating only homemade breakfast and lunch. Got my base weight for the challenge: 168. So now I know the number I'm shooting for is 162.

 

Side Quest:

Grocery shopping put us $6 over budget for week, but that's the last of our expenses for the week (we do a weekly cash budget), so at least we won't be hemorrhaging. 

 

9/17/15 - Week 1, Day 4

 

Quest 1:

Easy run this morning, 3 miles at around 9:40 pace. Saving the speed work for tomorrow. Starting small with 4x400 interval training with 400m jogs between. Might do 6x400 if I'm feeling good.

 

Quest 2:

Good stretch routine after running. Will probably do yoga Saturday or Sunday. Anyone know a resource with a good routine for runners?

 

Quest 3:

Nailed it

 

Side Quest:

No update

Chapter 25: Theophilus is Mostly Done

Volume 1: Meanderings (2015 - 2020): 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 | 18 | 19 | 20 | 21 | 22 | 23

Volume 2: The Bar and the Bellwether (2021): 24 | 25

 

"May your curse in life be that your hard work is constantly mistaken for talent."

Link to post

9/18/15 - Week 1, Day 5

 

Quest 1:

Interval training this morning, and it hurt so good. 4x400 w/ 400 jogs in between. My "sprint" times were: 1:44.67, 1:37.93, 1:47.14; 1:42.30. I was surprised I improved from interval 3 to 4. My legs felt like they were going to collapse beneath me. Going to try to scale up to 6x400 next week, after a couple of easy runs and a recovery day, that is.

 

Quest 2:

Good stretch routine after running.

 

Quest 3:

Nailed it

 

Side Quest:

No update

 

I have one more run this week to go, but I'm out of the woods for "work meals" now going into the weekend. I'm impressed that I only ate out once this week. We're going to be spending the weekend with extended family, and fortunately none of them are overly indulgent eaters, so I should be able to stay on track food-wise. I'm playing golf tomorrow, and that will be a nice departure from the exercise norm for me.

Chapter 25: Theophilus is Mostly Done

Volume 1: Meanderings (2015 - 2020): 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 | 18 | 19 | 20 | 21 | 22 | 23

Volume 2: The Bar and the Bellwether (2021): 24 | 25

 

"May your curse in life be that your hard work is constantly mistaken for talent."

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9/19/15 - Week 1 Day 6

Quest 1

Strapped my boy into the jogging stroller yesterday morning and ran four miles. It was brutal on account of the 70lb sled I was pushing and the blazing AZ sun... Got home and remembered, sh*t, I'm playing golf this afternoon. That's four more hours in the hot sun. (On a side note, it was my first time golfing in over two years, and it felt great to get out there again.)

Quest 2

Stretching, still no yoga.

Quest 3

N/A - weekend

Side Quest

I think we went maybe $20 over this week. Well reconcile today to see how we look.

All in all, a good week 1. Onward to week 2!

Chapter 25: Theophilus is Mostly Done

Volume 1: Meanderings (2015 - 2020): 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 | 18 | 19 | 20 | 21 | 22 | 23

Volume 2: The Bar and the Bellwether (2021): 24 | 25

 

"May your curse in life be that your hard work is constantly mistaken for talent."

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9/20/15 - W1 D7

A bit of a throwaway day to be honest. Rest from running, and a lazy day with extended family that culminated with gorging myself on burgers, hot dogs, and all the requisite accouterments.

9/21/15 - W2D1

Quest 1

Ran 3 miles this morning around a 9:40 pace. After some great gains from the last NF challenge, I've leveled of a bit. Need to push a little harder to drop below 9 by the end of this challenge

Quest 2

Got a good stretch in, which helped recovery a lot. It was humid as all get out today (mid-80s w/ 65% at 5:30 AM), which is not something I'm used to. So I needed every bit of recovery help.

Quest 3

Major fail. We were low on groceries. Old me would have just resigned to fast food for the day. New me put together a ramshackle lunch of sweet potato, raw carrots, and a pear. Come lunch time, old me reemerged for Chinese takeout. Damn. 2 of 3 allowed meals for the challenge gone just 8 days in.

Side quest

We went about $50 over last week, so my wife and I are sitting down tonight to reassess and see where we need to adjust.

Chapter 25: Theophilus is Mostly Done

Volume 1: Meanderings (2015 - 2020): 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 | 18 | 19 | 20 | 21 | 22 | 23

Volume 2: The Bar and the Bellwether (2021): 24 | 25

 

"May your curse in life be that your hard work is constantly mistaken for talent."

Link to post

Your interval running intrigues me.  Do you run flat out for 400m and then jog slowly for 400m?  I sounds deceptively simple right now, I shall have to try this :)

 

What are your longest runs at the moment? 

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Level 11 Morgana Scout

STR 14|DEX 11|STA 31|CON 11|WIS 23|CHA 19

Current challenge:  Talvi makes tactical decisions | Epic quests: 2015, 2016 | Running instalog: new_tracks_to_follow | Previous challenges: -2 -1 etc...

 

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Your interval running intrigues me. Do you run flat out for 400m and then jog slowly for 400m? I sounds deceptively simple right now, I shall have to try this :)

What are your longest runs at the moment?

Yes, it really is that simple. I'm a newbie when it comes to speedwork so I needed something that was super simple. The jogs are a little longer than some plans I've seen, but I can use all the extra recovery time I can get.

  • Like 1

Chapter 25: Theophilus is Mostly Done

Volume 1: Meanderings (2015 - 2020): 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 | 18 | 19 | 20 | 21 | 22 | 23

Volume 2: The Bar and the Bellwether (2021): 24 | 25

 

"May your curse in life be that your hard work is constantly mistaken for talent."

Link to post

9/22/15 - W2D2

 

Quest 1 - Overslept the alarm and missed my run. No biggie, 5 days left for 3 more runs. I did make a nifty spreadsheet to track my runs and posted it on my fridge at home. Helps get things in front of me

 

Quest 2 - No stretching or yoga. Again, no biggie. Lots of daylight left.

 

Quest 3 - Fail again. We hadn't gotten groceries yet, so it was ugly fast food. For those of you following along, that puts me at my 3 meal allowance for the whole challenge. I'm going to need some serious discipline moving forward. On the plus side, I have no excuses left.

 

Side Quest - Went grocery shopping this week. There are a couple other things we need for the week, but we should come in on budget.

 

9/23/15 - W2D3

 

Quest 1 - Got in a good four-miler this morning. I switched from Map My Run to give Runkeeper a try, because of its customizable splits. I noticed the distances were different than I had gotten with MMR (I run the same route daily). As a result, my pace was a lot faster (~20 sec/mile avg., almost 1 min. faster on one of my mile splits). I was excited that either MMR was underestimating distance or I was just that much faster. Alas, Runkeeper was off. I checked my distance on the MMR website maps. I looked at the Runkeeper log, and it looks like it got all wonky during a really small tunnel underpass on my run. I'm going to have to figure that out, because I really like the Runkeeper interface. Speedwork tomorrow.

 

Quest 2 - Good stretching after my run, and feeling nice and limber today. Yoga slated for Friday.

 

Quest 3 - Packed my lunch. Huzzah!

 

Side Quest - No spending today, still on track.

  • Like 1

Chapter 25: Theophilus is Mostly Done

Volume 1: Meanderings (2015 - 2020): 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 | 18 | 19 | 20 | 21 | 22 | 23

Volume 2: The Bar and the Bellwether (2021): 24 | 25

 

"May your curse in life be that your hard work is constantly mistaken for talent."

Link to post

Alright, folks. We've got some catching up to do. Here's how the rest of week two went.

Quest 1: Missed a few morning runs but made them up in the evenings later in the week. Got my interval run in. I was looking forward to trying out Runkeeper for the speedwork, since it lets you set custom distances for audio cues. I set mine for .25 miles. It was great taking the guess work out of it. Disappointing, though, because it only reports 1 mile splits. Think I'm gonna return to MMR this week, and bust out the stopwatch for intervals.

On another note, I hit a milestone this week. I've now surpassed 100 miles since I began running again in July. Woohoo!

Quest 2: Got in good stretches, by still no yoga. I've got to figure out how to better incorporate it into my schedule.

Quest 3: Held the line the rest of the week. Win.

Side Quest: I'm honestly unsure how I did this week. That's part of the problem. My wife and I had a good discussion today about where we want to see ourselves in the next couple of years, and it's clear to us that finances is a big area we need to improve to get any of those places. Hopefully, we can roll that into some real momentum this week.

Onto week 3!

  • Like 1

Chapter 25: Theophilus is Mostly Done

Volume 1: Meanderings (2015 - 2020): 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 | 18 | 19 | 20 | 21 | 22 | 23

Volume 2: The Bar and the Bellwether (2021): 24 | 25

 

"May your curse in life be that your hard work is constantly mistaken for talent."

Link to post

Runkeeper went nuts when I went under a highway underpass. Otherwise, they were comparable.

  • Like 2

Chapter 25: Theophilus is Mostly Done

Volume 1: Meanderings (2015 - 2020): 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 | 18 | 19 | 20 | 21 | 22 | 23

Volume 2: The Bar and the Bellwether (2021): 24 | 25

 

"May your curse in life be that your hard work is constantly mistaken for talent."

Link to post

Week 3, Day 1

 

Quest 1: Overslept and didn't run. No worries, lots of time this week to get the 4 in

 

Quest 2: Nada, was going to do yoga at night, but I decided to do nothing instead. Here's to good choices.

 

Quest 3: Did good on this one, although I'm noticing that I'm buying more "snacks" during the days. Gonna have to nix that too. 

 

Side Quest: A-ok

 

Week 3, Day 2

 

Quest 1: 3 miles this morning (added a .1 for a full 5K, actually). Pace was right around 9:45, so pretty average for me. I was 11 seconds off from breaking a 30 minute 5K, going to push a little harder on Friday to try to get there. (I have intervals tomorrow, and an easy run on Saturday left this week as well.)

 

Quest 2: Good stretch this morning. I'm determined to get yoga in tonight or wake up extra early to get yoga and run tomorrow.

 

Quest 3: Again with the snacks. And, no progress on the weight loss. SO, I'm amending this quest. No food purchases during the workday. The only permissible beverage purchase is black coffee. Period.

 

Side Quest: Plugging along just fine.

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Chapter 25: Theophilus is Mostly Done

Volume 1: Meanderings (2015 - 2020): 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 | 18 | 19 | 20 | 21 | 22 | 23

Volume 2: The Bar and the Bellwether (2021): 24 | 25

 

"May your curse in life be that your hard work is constantly mistaken for talent."

Link to post

Wow, I just realized I haven't been on here in a week! Things have been busy, so I've missed the updates. But I've been moving right along. Let's recap.

Week 3

Quest 1: all runs in, including speed work. Capped off the week with a four miler at a sub-10 pace, a first for me. First two miles were 9:23 and 9:13 respectively. Feeling good about my chances of hitting my 3-mile, sub-9 pace by the end of this thing.

Quest 2: good stretching, no yoga. I'm having a hard time working that into my routine.

Quest 3: Abysmal end to the week on this front.

Side Quest: equally abysmal.

I need to find a way to channel the dedication I have to my first quest into my other quests. This week is do or die if I want to rate my sophomore challenge as anything approaching "moderately successful."

  • Like 2

Chapter 25: Theophilus is Mostly Done

Volume 1: Meanderings (2015 - 2020): 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 | 18 | 19 | 20 | 21 | 22 | 23

Volume 2: The Bar and the Bellwether (2021): 24 | 25

 

"May your curse in life be that your hard work is constantly mistaken for talent."

Link to post

W4D1

 

Q1: Rest Day

Q2: None

Q3: Work lunch thingy, so I ate out. But I did give myself that caveat.

SQ: off to a good start

 

W4D2

 

Q1: Great run this morning. 3 Miles at a 9:21 pace, fastest yet. Adding a second speed workout this week. I'll do 4x400 intervals one day (Wednesday), and a tempo run another (Saturday, once I figure out what the heck a tempo run is...).

Q2: Good stretching, no yoga. Yoga tomorrow AM (promise!)

Q3: Killer day today: made a great spinach omelet this morning, and brought a spinach salad for luch. That's right, spinach twice in one day. Just call me Popeye.

SQ: Plugging along, on target.

  • Like 1

Chapter 25: Theophilus is Mostly Done

Volume 1: Meanderings (2015 - 2020): 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 | 18 | 19 | 20 | 21 | 22 | 23

Volume 2: The Bar and the Bellwether (2021): 24 | 25

 

"May your curse in life be that your hard work is constantly mistaken for talent."

Link to post

W4D3

Still looking good for this week across the board. No run or yoga, but still lots of time to get those in.

W4D4

No running today. Opted for yoga instead. I grabbed the Runners World routine that Talvi posted a couple of weeks ago. It was good, but I think I need to find whatever comes before "beginner." Ate out for lunch today. Dang three hour conference call running right through lunchtime threw me all off. Budget is looking good this week. Will need to do 3 consecutive runs starting tomorrow. Tentative plan: intervals, easy, tempo.

  • Like 1

Chapter 25: Theophilus is Mostly Done

Volume 1: Meanderings (2015 - 2020): 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 | 18 | 19 | 20 | 21 | 22 | 23

Volume 2: The Bar and the Bellwether (2021): 24 | 25

 

"May your curse in life be that your hard work is constantly mistaken for talent."

Link to post

Good plan. How is the yoga for you?

Yoga was good. I'm incredibly inflexible so I always feel like a dope doing it. "Now, touch your left instep to your right shoulder blade..." "I'M SORRY, WHAT?!"

But it's good for me, so I guess I'll keep at it.

Runs for the weekend so far-

Intervals Friday Night: in which Theophilus learns that ice cream even four hours before a run is a BAD idea

Easy Stroller Run Saturday Morning: in which Theophilus learns that there is no such thing as an "easy" stroller run

But hey, I got them done.

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Chapter 25: Theophilus is Mostly Done

Volume 1: Meanderings (2015 - 2020): 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 | 18 | 19 | 20 | 21 | 22 | 23

Volume 2: The Bar and the Bellwether (2021): 24 | 25

 

"May your curse in life be that your hard work is constantly mistaken for talent."

Link to post

Had a couple more good runs since the last update. On Sunday night, our youngest (13 mos) wasn't sleeping, so I strapped him in the stroller. Ran four miles with a new route, and stumbled across maybe the nicest neighborhood I've seen in my city. If I ever have a couple extra million lying around, I know where I'm moving. 3 miles this morning, trying to push my pace a little bit. Came in under 9:30/mile. I may be able to get under 9 this challenge, but I think that's a bit ambitious.

 

As for the other quests, it's a really mixed bag this time. Food at work has been "meh." Yoga will happen this week. Budget is pretty "meh" too.

  • Like 1

Chapter 25: Theophilus is Mostly Done

Volume 1: Meanderings (2015 - 2020): 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 | 18 | 19 | 20 | 21 | 22 | 23

Volume 2: The Bar and the Bellwether (2021): 24 | 25

 

"May your curse in life be that your hard work is constantly mistaken for talent."

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