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Jothra Conquers the Farlands!


Jothra

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     Jothra opened his eyes, immediately regretted it, and closed them again. His head felt a pain unlike any known form of pain. He decided to just lie here and hope he didn't get eaten while he waited for the thudding headache to subside.

     He heard a weird snorting noise nearby. It didn't sound like any of the slurpasaurs or dromeosaurs he had been getting used to. Despite his aching everything, he took a look.

     He blinked once or twice to make sure he wasn't seeing things.

     "Oh, great," he moaned. "Just great."

 

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     Was it some kind of zombie? It was green and disgusting, wearing tattered clothing, and grunting angrily. It walked towards Jothra with a surprisingly smooth gait, it's arms outstretched for either a hug or a face-rending.

     "Quick question!" Jothra asked groggily. "Hug or face-rending?"

     "Grunt!"

     "Friend or foe?"

     "Grunt!"

     "Fair enough. That's a false dichotomy. Can I count on your utter ambivalence?"

     "Grunt!"

     "Alright. I'll just run then," said Jothra, staggering to his feet. He wasn't very fast, but he managed to drop the zombie thing soon enough.

     "Great, then," he gasped for breath. "Hungry now."

*     *     *     *

 

     A short time later, Jothra found what he had been looking for: food. There was only one problem: zombies. Jothra could plainly see a pile of bread sitting on the ground, but it was, just as clearly, surrounded by zombies. What was an aspiring world-saving hero to do?

     Just then, a large hand clamped down on his shoulder. Jothra was roughly turned around to stare into an ugly, ogre-like face. It's owner had clearly never brushed its teeth, or its hair, or any of the weird bristles growing out of its nose, ears, and other nose.

     "You bin sent to work the mines," the creature growled. "Stay still while I tag ye 'nd scan ye."

     The creature took a small sevice from its belt, and scanned Jothra from top to bottom. From this it built a profile, and saved the information to the central Mine Escapee database, just in case Jothra was crazy enough to try to escape.

 

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     "Now, ye belongs tuh me, Ye et when I say you et. Ye rest when I say ye rest. Ye..."

     He didn't finish the thought. It had taken the creature some time to realize that something was amiss, and some more time to realize that the amiss thing was that it no longer had a hold of Jothra. It took even longer to realize that Jothra had stolen its sword, taken care of the knot of zombies, taken the bread, made a torch from a handy branch and some charcoal, and taken off into the darkening night.

     "Aw well. The naight will finish 'im off," shrugged the creature, shuffling back to the safety of its evil mines.

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     How will Jothra survive in the Far Lands? Well, by livin' the Minecraft life, of course!

 

1.) Main Fitness Quest

My three goal-achieving-type-little-goals-that-add-up-to-a-bigger-goal-goals:

 

i.) Mine, shovel, chop, and hoe except on S Days (Saturdays, Sundays, and Special Days). Shovelglove! I'll be mimicking most every Minecraft action at some point in the 14 minute daily Shovelglove routine. To keep myself from overdoing, I will also get a point for each S Day I rest, and lose one for each S Day I Shovelglove. Easy scoring: __/42. [+3 STR | +2 STA]

 

ii.) Run everywhere because that's what I do in Minecraft. It means going through more food in-game, but it sure makes survival easier. Follow the Three Weeks to 30 Minutes running program. If I feel like I need to repeat some days, I will. When through the program, I will do a check-in to see how I'm faring, and decide how to continue the running part of the challenge from there. Again, points for taking my rest days, Easy scoring: __/42. [+2 STA | +2 DEX | +1 CHA]

 

iii.) Don't just stand and get et, and don't starve to death, moron. No Adjective Dieting for me. I'll meet a Fitbit Charge HR-recorded 10,000 steps a day and maintain a calorie deficit. __/42. [+2 CON | +1 WIS]

 

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2) LIFE SIDE QUEST

Read every day. Internet doesn't count. [Reading at school still doesn't count.] __/42. [+1 WIS | +1 CHA]

 

I'm going to determine scores based on percentage ranges, more or less like on my childhood report cards:

 

A = 86-100% | B = 73-85% | C = 66-72% | D = 51-65% | F = 0-50%

 

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3) MOTIVATION

I know it isn't as Minecrafty as the rest of the challenge, but...

 

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Run.

 

...I do own a shocking number of Flash logo technical shirts.

 

Good luck, everyone!

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Jothra

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Sounds like you have a lot planned and, knowing you, you'll magically manage to get it all done. :)  I've never played Minecraft, but I understand the premise and it sounds cool. 

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"Fairy tales are more than true not because they tell us dragons exist, but because they tell us dragons can be beaten"  -Neil Gaiman

 

Mandalorian Assassin: Level 5

Current Challenge - Artemis becomes Mandalorian

Overall Weight Loss Journey: Starting Weight -     Current Weight -    Goal -160lbs

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Sounds like you have a lot planned and, knowing you, you'll magically manage to get it all done. :)  I've never played Minecraft, but I understand the premise and it sounds cool.

There are two basic playing styles in Minecraft: builder and explorer. I'm definitely the latter, which is why I spend so much time trying to collect my scattered belongings after I respawn.

That's also my Nerd Fitness playing style, which explains both my successes and my aching everythings.

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Jothra

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     After a short sojourn in the fresh night air, Jothra came to a life-changing realization: zombies everywhere. There were zombies everywhere in this place, and all of them wanted him dead for some reason. And it wasn't just zombies, either! There were giant killer spiders, skeletons armed with primitive bows and arrows, skeletons armed with primitive bow and arrows and also rather improbably riding giant killer spiders, tall black-as-night creatures with glowing purple eyes that he had no desire to offend, and four-legged green things.

     The green things were the worst. If he heard their telltale hiss, he ran his hardest, because the hiss meant that any second they would explode.

     Yes. Explode.

     And, to add insult to injury, he had seen at least three separate smaller zombies riding chickens.

     Somehow, through his zombie defense nightmare, Jothra had scrounged up an axe, a shovel, a pick axe, two roasted chickens, and one loaf of fresh homemade bread. He didn't stop to question how he could fit all of these things into his satchel, because he was reasonably certain the answer would fall firmly into the half of the universe that he didn't understand.

     Well, he had a shovel. A covered hole in the ground would be a better hiding place than the wide open spaces of the plain he found himself in.

     He began to dig.

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     So, as is par for the course in Minecraft, I survive my first night by running a lot and then sleeping safely in a hole in the ground. So it goes. If I were going to be a real stickler, I would have to punch a few trees over to craft a Crafting Block to craft my first tools, but I'm willing to expedite the story somewhat.

 

     Day 1:

     i.) Mine, shovel, chop, hoe: 14 minutes of Shovelglove. I added weight to turn my 10 lb. sledgehammer into a 12.5 lb. weight, and that extra 2.5 makes it killer. I feel thoroughly worked over. It took a few minutes of flopping around before I could even make my arms lift to type this properly.

     ii.) Run everywhere: 1/1 x 10

     iii.) 10K Steps and Food: Yes and yes.

     iv.) Read: The Flash vol. 4. So far it's a'ight.

 

     To make tally time easier, I'm going to keep a running score, with handy and informative mouseover tooltips, so I don't have to add it all up later. It looks like this:

 

| 1/42 | 1/42 | 1/42 | 1/42 |

     It will go in my signature. Keen.
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Jothra

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     Night one had been an unmitigated horror in a damp hole in the ground. One day later, however, was a different story. Jothra had figured out the most fundamental survival basic of this bizarre place.

     He had figured out how to craft.

     After all, he always carried a Swiss Army Knife in his pocket, and a multitool in his satchel, so it wasn't a huge stretch. But here, in the Far Lands, building things seemed...easier. Just about any piece of rock or wood could be harvested. Then, with nothing but a strangely innate sense of construction and his trusty SAK, Jothra could build better tools. Stone axes? Well, it was an improvement over the awful wood one he started with.

     Soon he discovered he could build a stone pickaxe.

     Next he discovered mining. And iron. He found that with nothing but some stone and some conveniently mined coal, he could make a furnace. With the furnace, he could cook his food, or — and this was an exciting moment — he could smelt iron ore into iron bricks. And with iron bricks and wood, he could make iron tools. Iron axe? Iron shovel? Iron pickaxe? Yes please.

     By the time a few more of this place's short days were over, he was living in a comfortable stone hut, with a bed (sheep wool, from wild sheep, and some wood), a two-oven furnace, a nice wooden craft table, and — take this, zombies! — a set of heavy oak doors. Things were looking up.

     But, in the meantime, he was hungry, and he was just about out of roast chickens (wild chickens? really?)

     He already had a vague notion to plant some of the seeds and wild potatoes he had taken from a couple of strangely equipped zombies. All he needed was a safe place to do it...and that place was up.

 

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     Seriously, in Minecraft you go from terrified rabbit of a person to the Heavily Fortified King of the Overworld in no time flat if you're careful. Especially if you're playing on a basement server with friends. The survival part at the beginning is the best part. Then building your massive palatial estates is the best part.

     Then getting lost in the woods and blown up by creepers is the best part. Ah, Minecraft.

     Anyway, as I mentioned yesterday, I took my 10 lb. sledge, and firmly attached a 2.5 lb. wrist weight to the head. As I also mentioned yesterday, the extra 2.5 lbs. makes Shovelglove a whole bloody lot harder. It's crazy. It doesn't help that the head is taller now because of the weight, so it's slightly more shovel shaped. I love it. I can feel my body either improving drastically, or getting ready to fall apart forever. I'll let you know which it is. I may go ahead and buy a proper 12-pounder, though, just so I don't have a basically unusable duct-tape-and-sweater-wrapped sledgehammer around the house.

 

     Day 2:

     i.) Mine, shovel, chop, hoe: 14 minutes of Shovelglove. My arms!

     ii.) Run everywhere: 1/1 x 10

     iii.) 10K Steps and Food: Yes and yes.

     iv.) Read: The Flash vol. 4. So far it's still a'ight.

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Jothra

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     Laying ladder sections as he went, Jothra built a stone column jutting into the sky, and didn't stop until he was just above the strangely uniform height of the area's clouds. He was about 98% certain a fall from this height would kill him, particularly if he landed on his keys.

     Thanks to the bizarre but consistent physics of the Far Lands, he was able to carry a disturbing number of stone blocks in his bag, and he was now carefully attaching them to make a platform for the floor of his house. Every once in awhile, he would stop to plant a few torches in the ground. This was apparently enough to keep monsters from spawning around him. The exploding green "Creepers," as he had taken to calling them, were bad enough on the ground; up here, they were a virtually guaranteed death sentence.

     He was starting to regret the dimensions he had chosen for his floor. Attaching each block meant hanging out as far over the edge as he could. He was certainly not afraid of heights, but he was absolutely afraid of his own potential stupidity.

     But it would be worth it. If he could ever get it done.

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     Shovelglove! The basic rules of Shovelglove specify exactly 14 minutes, and I'm okay with respecting that (it's a very taxing 14 minutes. Holy crap.) Now, going through my basic workout plan takes just less than seven minutes, but simply repeating it would be really hard after the first round. I get around this by doing the whole circuit, then performing half the reps for each exercise for another circuit. Then I halve it again, etc. Patterns are fun.

     I start with 50 shovels per side, 20 butter churns per hand position, 10 Flip Levers per arm, 20 Chop Woods per side, and 20 Hoist Sacks per side. Then my next circuit I do 25, 10, 5, 10, and 10. The next is 13, 5, 3, 5, and 5. When a number is indivisible by two, I round up, because basic math is basic. So far this week, I have made it through 7, 3, 2, 3, 3 each time.

     I only started using the 10 lb. hammer about a month ago, and only added the extra weight Monday, but my arms already feel a million times stronger that they were before. This is really cool, you guys.

 

     Scheduled rest day from running today. Tomorrow I start 2 min. run /1 min. walk x5, then 1/1 x5.

 

     Day 3:

     i.) Mine, shovel, chop, hoe: 14 minutes of Shovelglove.

     ii.) Run everywhere: Scheduled rest day.

     iii.) 10K Steps and Food: Yes and yes.

     iv.) Read: Flash break. Today I started Paradise Lost. I'm not too deep yet, but so far, so good.

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Jothra

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Hi Jothra,

I discovered way too late your stories in the last challenge and was too short on time (lazy) to read through all of it. This time I know from the beginning and I look forward to reading your entertaining story bits.  :adoration:

 

Also like your themed fitness quest :)

 

Good luck!

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Iceburner

Lvl. 7 Human, (Lvl. 5 Assassin, Lvl. 2 Rebel)

STR: 13.25 ~ DEX: 6.5 ~STA: 14.25 ~ CON: 9 ~ WIS: 15 ~ CHA: 10

Current Quest: #9 - Finding the balance in mind and body

Battle Log

Finished Quest (challenge): #1, #2, #3, #4, #5, #7, #8

Aborted Quest (challenge): #6

"Kaizen!!!" 

 

weight loss goal (92kg -> 87kg): |----------------------->| (currently 86.3)

waist loss goal (109cm -> 94cm): |--------->____________| (currently 103)

pull-ups (0 -> 10): |->____________________| (currently 0)

push-ups (0 -> 50): |------>_______________| (currently 12)

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     Jothra's comfortable two-floor house in the sky, complete with a walkway with stone railing around the outside of each floor, floating wooden chandeliers, an entire bank of furnaces, and — naturally — a wheat field growing on the roof, next to the large potato garden (Jothra was getting very good at making bread and baked potatoes), and with a short path to a large forest he had planted on an attached platform, which of course was also in the sky.

    Oh, and if you went into the backdoor at the bottom of the house's giant support column, you could visit the Chicken Dungeon. Those chickens could get awfully loud, so Jothra didn't mind keeping them safely underground. They seemed to enjoy being safe from the creepy mobs of the outside world, and barely even noticed being occasionally roasted.

     The view from up here was incredible, and his safety and comfort were assured in a way he hadn't had since he was first freed by the Rebellion. He was comfortable. He was fed. He was safe.

     He was bored.

     He grabbed his satchel, loaded it up a few stacks of chicken, baked potatoes, and bread, and strapped on his tools.

     He had built up this far. Now it was time to see where down would get him.

 

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     My Fitbit is giving me this weird issue in which every day or two, at some random-ass time, the HR lights will go crazy-go-nuts, and the screen won't work. It seems to still track steps during this time. Fitbit's official answer from on high is to perform a restart, but that involved plugging it in to a power source, which means always having the cable and a power source with me. Hopefully a hard reset will help. I don't want to return and exchange it, but I will if I must.

     Day 4:

     i.) Mine, shovel, chop, hoe: 14 minutes of Shovelglove. Moar pains!

     ii.) Run everywhere: 2/1 x 5, 1/1 x 5

     iii.) 10K Steps and Food: Yes and yes.

     iv.) Read: The Flash vol. 4 some more.

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Jothra

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Did you do shovelglove last challenge? I've heard of it before, but haven't had the opportunity to get feedback from someone who's tried it. What do you think so far?

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"Fairy tales are more than true not because they tell us dragons exist, but because they tell us dragons can be beaten"  -Neil Gaiman

 

Mandalorian Assassin: Level 5

Current Challenge - Artemis becomes Mandalorian

Overall Weight Loss Journey: Starting Weight -     Current Weight -    Goal -160lbs

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Did you do shovelglove last challenge? I've heard of it before, but haven't had the opportunity to get feedback from someone who's tried it. What do you think so far?

I didn't originally plan to, but when I found out about it on another NF thread, I decided to give it a try. When I borked my legs for a few says through overuse, I ended up filling in with shovelglove.

I really like it. But I grew up in a logging town in the middle of the mountains, and later spent some time in construction, so I didn't really have to learn form; I just threw myself headlong into it.

I'm not sick of it after more than a month, so it's got that going for it.

Jothra

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     It was dark down here.

     Granted, as soon as Jothra had discovered how easy it was to dig and mine his way down in this place, he had gone very deep, and he should have expected the darkness.

     But the darkness of the underground left the darkness of the night far behind. It was the darkness true fears are woven from. A darkness that will not allow any of the light in, nor any of the light out. It was a darkness for monsters; a darkness for madness.

     Long story short, Jothra was setting a lot of torches, and carrying the sticks to make new ones any time he happened upon some coal. Coal was very plentiful in the underground. Slightly less common was iron, and much more rare were gold, redstone, lapus lazuli, diamonds, and emeralds. He had a fair amount of each of these, thanks to the strangely spacious properties his satchel had developed in the Far Lands. He was also carrying a furnace (also in his amazingly spacious bag) so he could process these minerals and gems, which allowed him to carry even more.

     His tools would eventually wear out while digging, so he would occasionally stop to craft more. He also kept at least one sword handy, because the underground was rife with monsters. Unlike the world above-ground, down here the monsters never stopped coming. All he could do was place obstacles to keep them away, set torches to keep them from spawning too close to him, and defend himself whenever necessary. It was necessary a lot.

     It was down here that he finally challenged an Enderman.

     For some reason, the tall, mysterious, eerie bipeds, black as the darkness of the underground, had always chilled him. They seemed so otherworldly, like they didn't belong in the Far Lands at all. Jothra wasn't even sure where the name Enderman came from; it had just popped into his head, and seemed to fit.

     Jothra was swinging a stone pickaxe — he had found it during a zombie attack, and figured he may as well use it before making a new one from iron — when, with the usual strange noise, an Enderman appeared immediately in front of him. It stood on a block of stone, so Jothra stared it right in the knees. The pick was in mid-swing, and its momentum carried it right into the Enderman's leg.

     An unworldly howl started to build, and the Enderman opened a mouth Jothra didn't even know they had. It's piercing, glowing purple eyes fixed on Jothra, and in that instant it became obvious that there was no turning back. It's going to attack me, Jothra thought with absolute certainty. And I already know I can't win.

     Before it had a chance to move, and doing his best to ignore its bone-chilling, reality-piercing howl, Jothra swung the pick again. Again and again he swung, with all his might, hitting the Enderman again and again, mostly to keep it from hitting back.

     The Enderman fell, and vanished in a purple flash. Jothra had, despite all odds, won. The Enderman was gone.

     It's howl, however, continued for some time.

     Jothra decided this might be an excellent time to head back to the surface.

 

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     Those exploding bastard Creepers may be the most iconic and dangerous Minecraft mobs because of their numbers and blast radius, but the Endermen are absolutely the most unnerving. They will appear out of nowhere, and wander around making short, weird noises, picking up blocks of wood or dirt or whatever, and just leave you alone...until you look at them for too long. Then they make the creepiest alien howling noise, and attack. They hit very hard, and randomly teleport around you during their attacks. They are too weird.

     It turns out they really are otherworldly. They're actually from another Minecraft world called The End. Instead of a few scattered ones like in the regular Overworld, in The End they are exceptionally common. Yikes.

     One time I really did hit a suddenly appearing Enderman with a stone pick while I was mining, and I really did manage to kill it desperately with that pick before it could find a way to reach me down where I was. Minecraft is cool.

     And with that story I have achieved Full Nerd. Go me.

 

     No Shovelglove on S Days (Saturdays, Sundays, Special Days). I think I will also allow myself to eat at maintenance (rather than a deficit) on those same days. I will interpret "Special Days" as stat holidays and important one-day events. I will always be clear about what these are. I will still require my full 10,000 steps on these days.

     Day 5:

     i.) Mine, shovel, chop, hoe: 14 minutes of Shovelglove. Stone pickaxe Enderman battle!

     ii.) Run everywhere: 2/1 x 5, 1/1 x 5

     iii.) 10K Steps and Food: No. Food was fine, but 2000 steps short. Movie night with a friend I don't see often. Worth it.

     iv.) Read: The Flash vol. 4. Moving slowly. Ironic.

 

Edit to add: I went to bloody town on Shovelglove, and managed circuits of 50-20-10-20-20, 25-10-5-10-10, 13-5-3-5-5, 7-3-2-3-3, and 4-2-1-2-2. This is the first time I've made that last set since I switched to the 12.5 weight on Monday. Holla.

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Jothra

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In other news, my Fitbit Charge HR is still, after as many restarts, resets, and settings tricks as I can throw at it, refusing to illuminate the screen and going HR-light mad at least once a day at seemingly random times (my old Charge never had any problems, other than me slowly destroying the band over the course of a year). Since I am often not anywhere near my charging cable (I work in a very technophobic setting), I cannot simply go through the pain-in-the-ass reboot process whenever this happens.

 

Tomorrow, I'm going back to Best Buy to trade it straight-up for another Charge HR, and hopefully chalk this one up to a lemon. After all, a year of deadly abuse didn't lead to any problems with my old one. I'd still be using it if I hadn't lost it.

 

Edit:

Here's the new guy, including a swap out for the black band adjuster I still have from my original HR. Why switch it out? I'm not sure. It just seemed like a good idea at the time.

 

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Jothra

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     After several harrowing but productive days, Jothra was taking a break.

     This isn't to say he was taking downtime; in fact, he was busy fiddling with his Tracking Unit.

     As one may recall, when Jothra was first rescued by the Rebellion, the Old Men of the Rebellion had given him a Tracking Unit to clip to his belt. After an...incident, they replaced it with a wrist-mounted unit. This tracker was meant to keep track of Jothra's progress as the Old Men trained him for an eventual showdown with Ogrod.

     What the Old Men didn't know was that after he dropped from their radar to pursue his own training agenda, Jothra had found another Old Man. One the rest of the Rebellion didn't know about.

     Despite being much, much younger than any Old Man that Jothra had met in his travails, this one was the most brilliant. He had designed a new, smarter Tracking Unit. This one recorded not only Jothra's movements, but his vitals as well. And, best of all, it couldn't be tracked by the Old Men of the Rebellion. Jothra knew they were all master Assassins and Scouts and whatever else, but he also knew their methods just weren't going to work for him. With the Young Man's help, Jothra was free to shape his own destiny.

     But right now, the Tracking Unit was acting up. It was burning through its battery power far faster than it should, and would sometimes refuse to display data, even though tests showed it was still logging information. Even though he only sort of understood the device, he had it apart on the table in front of him, hoping it was a simple electrical problem, and not some complicated electronic one. It wasn't looking good.

     Suddenly, there was a popping noise, and Jothra was no longer alone in the room.

     An Enderman? Way up here?

     Jothra looked away and left it along. After a few minutes of wandering around making strange cooing noises, the Enderman picked up the table covered in tracker parts, and disappeared. As it vanished, a small package dropped to the floor. Puzzled, Jothra opened it.

     Inside was a new tracker, identical to the last. There was also a note:

 

     Jothra —

 

     If you are reading this, which I honestly doubt, but if you're reading this, I have managed to trick an Enderman into delivering a package. Imagine the scientific possibilities!

     To the task at hand: here is a replacement Tracking Unit. I have corrected the fault I determined lies in the design, so this one should function normally.

     Good luck.

 

                                                                                         — The Young Guy

 

     "Okay then," said Jothra to himself. "Don't look a gift horse in the mouth. Even if it's a crazy horse with a crazy gift in his crazy mouth. Crazy."

 

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     It's weird having both a running and Shovelglove rest day fall on the same day. I might go for a run anyway. For now, though, I'm finished early for a change.

     Day 6:
     i.) Mine, shovel, chop, hoe: Scheduled rest day.
     ii.) Run everywhere: Coincidentally, also a scheduled rest day.
     iii.) 10K Steps and Food: Yes.
     iv.) Read: The Flash vol. 4. Who is the Reverse Flash in this timeline? MYSTERY!

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Jothra

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That's the funny thing about rest days.  It can be nice, but suddenly there's too much free time. :)

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"Fairy tales are more than true not because they tell us dragons exist, but because they tell us dragons can be beaten"  -Neil Gaiman

 

Mandalorian Assassin: Level 5

Current Challenge - Artemis becomes Mandalorian

Overall Weight Loss Journey: Starting Weight -     Current Weight -    Goal -160lbs

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     Jothra ran.

     He wasn't nearly as good a runner as he would have liked, but sometimes you just have to run. For example, when It's dark out, and there are more monsters swarming around you than you can comfortably dispatch with a sword.

     All he had to do was make it home. Home was safe. Home was comfortable. Home was...

     ...

     ...

     ...boring.

     Jothra stopped. He blinked. Sometimes, running toward was far more important than running away. So he got out his sword, and he turned around.

     And he ran.

 

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     I wish Shovelglove were named Snuffleglove-upagus. I'm not totally sure why.

Day 7:

i.) Mine, shovel, chop, hoe: Scheduled rest day.

ii.) Run everywhere: 2/1 x6

iii.) 10K Steps and Food: Yes.

iv.) Read: The Flash vol. 4. Who is the Reverse Flash in this timeline? MYSTERY!

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Jothra

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     Okay, I could swear I wrote my Day 8 post already, but there is no evidence that it ever existed. I wonder what stupid thing I did wrong.

 

Day 8:

i.) Mine, shovel, chop, hoe: 14 minutes, 12.5 lbs.
ii.) Run everywhere: 2/1 x6.
iii.) 10K Steps and Food: Yes.
iv.) Read: The Flash vol. 4. Who is the Reverse Flash in this timeline? MYSTERY!

Jothra

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     Jothra was finally putting the finishing touches on his latest tool: a pickaxe.

     He had crafted or found many picks during his stay, but this was the first he had "enchanted." The process was long and fairly uninteresting, but the upshot was that he now had a pick that could earn him twice as much of any special mineral deposit he found. He was, after only a short time, rolling in diamonds.

     Though he still had a quandary. Diamond armour and tools were not particularly cost effective, so what in the world could he use them for?

     Instead of thinking too hard about it, he just kept swinging.

 

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     I bought a 14 lb. fence post maul today. It looks like a Donkey Kong hammer. I can just barely make it through 14 minutes of Shovelglove with it. I am now using it as my dedicated SG hammer, and keeping my 10 lb. sledge under the back seat of my truck for emergencies (like if I'm somewhere manly and I need to sling a sledgehammer over my shoulder to let people know I am sufficiently manly to hang around.) Instead of a sweater, I've covered my new shovel with a pair of thick wool socks.

Day 10:
i.) Mine, shovel, chop, hoe: 14 minutes, 14 lbs..
ii.) Run everywhere: Scheduled rest day.
iii.) 10K Steps and Food: Yes.
iv.) Read: The Flash vol. 4. I feel like I'm moving too slowly here.

Jothra

i | ii | iii | iv | v | vi | vii | viii

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     "Run!" Jothra shouted to the Old Man.

     Jothra wasn't sure where the Old Man had come from, or how he had made it this far into the Far Lands, but he wasn't going to worry about that right now. As annoying as the Old Men of the Rebellion had occasionally been with their set-in ways and narrow training regimen, Jothra quite liked them, and fully agreed with their cause. He wasn't going to let this Old Man come to harm if he could do anything at all to help.

     Right now, helping meant getting the Old Man away from a witch.

     Witches were not a very common sight in the far lands. Jothra had only seen three. Once he had found one right at the bottom of his tower, once he had found one in a small house on stilts in a swamp, and now he was facing one on a snowy hill not far from his house.

     The witch was already throwing glass vials at the nearest target, which (thanks to his warning to the Old Man) was Jothra. He managed to avoid three of the strange concoctions, but one container smashed into his chest. He suddenly felt a deep lethargy as the Potion of Slowness took effect. He could hardly move, and he recognized the colour of the witch's next potion — it was some sort of bubbly acid.

     What now, Jothra? He had learned early that the only way to survive anything in the Far Lands was to keep moving, but how could he keep moving when he could hardly even twitch?

     What now, Jothra?

     Suddenly, the witch's eyes grew wide, and it let out a strange bubbly mumbling. Then it keeled over. The Old Man stood behind, with a large oak staff in his hand.

     "I did read somewhere once," Jothra drawled, "that if a good, strongstick won't stop an enemy, magic probably won't work, either."

     Then he passed out.

*     *     *     *

     Jothra came to on his own bed. Well, his own bed in the Far Lands. Nearby, the Old Man was poring over the new tracker the Young Man had given Jothra mere days ago.

     "Interesting design," said the Old Man, without looking up. "I'm not sure how you found the Young Man — we can't — but his work is as excellent as ever."

     He wandered over to Jothra, and held the tracker out to him. "Don't worry. I'm not here to cause trouble. I came to make sure you're safe, and that you are continuing your training."

     Taking the tracker and strapping it back into place on his wrist, Jothra finally spoke. "I wasn't sure what to think. The last time I worked with the Old Men, I learned quite a bit, but I've been worried that you might force me back into that data-heavy, procedurally dense training setup. I've been learning too much since I broke out on my own, and I've been afraid to give that up."

     "You were right to be worried. There are many among us who wish to lock you in a room and train you by the book. I am not one of those people. I have managed to piece together enough of your goals and methods to note you are maintaining a very deliberate structure for your training, even if you have greatly reduced the amount of on-paper tracking you must perform." He nodded at the Tracking Unit on Jothra's wrist. "I have long supported the work of the Young Man, and it looks like this Tracking Unit takes much of the calculating and recording out of your hands. Good. You are meant to be improving, not recording and number crunching.

     "I can't help you get out of the Far Lands. It will be hard enough to get out myself. But I will report to the Rebellion, and let them know that you are performing well, and that once you find your way back, you will be ready for the next step. Trust me — you will find your way out of here without our help, and when you do, you will have learned a great many things about yourself."

     The Old Man started down the ladder, then looked back over his shoulder.

     "Oh, by the way: thank you for warning me about that witch. I've never liked those crazy harpies."

     And with that peculiarly unsagely comment, the Old Man was gone.

 

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     I spent the last few days running stage left on a musical review show (it went well, even though I'm not a musical review person). Between all the walking and lifting backstage, Shovelgloving at 14 lbs. for the first time, and doing almost 2000 bear crawls for the Assassins Mini, I decided to stick with the 1 min. run / 1 min. walk thing from Day 1 again from Thursday to Sunday. As is, I've still been destroyed every night this week, which feels legitimately wonderful. Switching back to the 1/1 may slow down my overall progress, but it helps keep the habit moving, and as long as I finish the program by the end of the challenge I'll be happy.

 

     I also came to a Shovelglove decision. I missed it on Tuesday, so I did it on Saturday's rest day instead. I think that's reasonable, so I'm back to full Shovelglove points. Incidentally, this means I dropped a day at 10 lbs. in favour of an extra day with 14 lbs., so that can't be all bad. In case anyone asks, the difference between 10 and 12.5 lbs. was huge, and the difference between 12.5 and 14 lbs. was just about as bad. I feel like a total boss after my 14 minutes with my new hammer, even if I'm only the boss of a wobbly pair of Jell-O arms.

 

     I enjoy bear crawls, but doing this many of them has been very hard on me. Depending on the nature of the next Assassins Mini, I may need to take the cooking rather than self-flagellation option. We'll see what it is I have to do 300 of.

Day 11:
i.) Mine, shovel, chop, hoe: 14 minutes, 14 lbs.
ii.) Run everywhere: 1/1x6
iii.) 10K Steps and Food: Yes. Almost double steps.
iv.) Read: Keep Calm and Pedal On.

 

Day 12:
i.) Mine, shovel, chop, hoe: 14 minutes, 14 lbs.
ii.) Run everywhere: 1/1x6
iii.) 10K Steps and Food: Yes. Almost double steps.
iv.) Read: Keep Calm and Pedal On.

 

Day 13:
i.) Mine, shovel, chop, hoe: 14 minutes, 14 lbs. (in lieu of Tuesday.)
ii.) Run everywhere: 1/1x6
iii.) 10K Steps and Food: Yes. Almost double steps.
iv.) Read: The Flash 75th anniversary collection.

 

Day 14:
i.) Mine, shovel, chop, hoe: Scheduled rest day.
ii.) Run everywhere: Rest day.
iii.) 10K Steps and Food: No. Over on food, because I am also under on steps.
iv.) Read: The Flash 75th anniversary collection.

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Jothra

i | ii | iii | iv | v | vi | vii | viii

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The more I hear about the shovelglove, the more I want to try, and the more I read your story the more I'd like to read some Disc World novels again.

 

But first things first. I need to finish The Hero's Journey and Fallout 4...

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Iceburner

Lvl. 7 Human, (Lvl. 5 Assassin, Lvl. 2 Rebel)

STR: 13.25 ~ DEX: 6.5 ~STA: 14.25 ~ CON: 9 ~ WIS: 15 ~ CHA: 10

Current Quest: #9 - Finding the balance in mind and body

Battle Log

Finished Quest (challenge): #1, #2, #3, #4, #5, #7, #8

Aborted Quest (challenge): #6

"Kaizen!!!" 

 

weight loss goal (92kg -> 87kg): |----------------------->| (currently 86.3)

waist loss goal (109cm -> 94cm): |--------->____________| (currently 103)

pull-ups (0 -> 10): |->____________________| (currently 0)

push-ups (0 -> 50): |------>_______________| (currently 12)

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