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Pavowski: this scout is hugging trees


Pavowski

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This is my sixth NF challenge.

 

I've been a new recruit, an assassin twice, and a scout twice. I've learned a lot in those challenges: I look good in black, body weight exercises are the hellified stuff, and I've just about got my 2-year nagging foot injury licked (for real this time, I think).

 

So what in the serious fargo am I doing in the treehuggers' camp?

 

could claim my assassin blood, and pretend that I took to the trees for some double-time hanging and climbing and swinging to hone my skills.

 

Or I could claim my scout-inspired wanderlust, and make like my feet are carrying me down new paths. (Or maybe I just got lost in the woods. NOT THAT THAT HAS EVER HAPPENED.)

 

But no, the truth is, I'm here on purpose, because I want to try something different. Not because I feel I've picked up everything I can from my other two homes -- far from it -- but because I firmly believe that a well-rounded Pav will make for a fitter, happier, less stretched-to-the-extreme kind of Pav.

 

And if there's a group that's about balance and rounding oneself out, it's you guys, right?

 

SO. My goals for this challenge:

 

1. Meditate.
 
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Meditation is something I've only ever dabbled with, and never in any sort of long-lasting way. But I've always liked what it's done for me when I've tried it, so I want to give it a spin as a regular part of my routine. I'm going to start with three sessions a week and try to push up to five by the challenge's end.
 
That said, I know you guys have some suggestions for guided meditation tips and apps. I think I'm going to give "Calm" a shot for starters, but what else do you guys recommend for the newbie?
 
2. Write.
 
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I've just finished drafting my second novel, and it'll be time all too soon to double back and dive into the murky, boiling swamp-strangle that is editing. But I feel seriously tapped in this area, and I feel like I've got a lot to learn here. So in this interim six weeks before I go to work, I'm going to do something totally different: I'm going to complete a workshop aimed at improving my short fiction. I've pretty much decided on the course, and it should fit nicely into this six-week challenge window. The goal of the 'shop is to have five press-ready flash fiction pieces ready to go. That'd be a good thing.
 
3. Unplug.
 
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Look, I'm still a scout at heart, and that's not going to change. Running and walking are always going to be cornerstones of my fitness routine. But to make it more druidish, I'm going to make an adjustment for mindfulness. And that is: headphones. I use my runs as a time to zone out, turn the brain off, and listen to music or podcasts lately, and while I love that, I wonder if I couldn't be a bit more plugged in to my surroundings while I'm out. I've run sans headphones before, and I don't mind it, but I only ever do it by accident. This time around, I'm going to do it at least once a week. I'm hoping that this will help me to meditate on my stories and my writing, but we'll see.

 

Point values TBD later on after I've "meditated" on it. Get it?

 

I'll see myself out.

  • Like 1

Level 11 Brutish Scoutsassin (That's totally a thing, shut up)

Str: 30 Dex: 26 Sta: 27 Con: 11 Wis: 23 Cha: 18

NerdFitness Trials: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10

Hellfire Club 4LIFE!

Inspiration comes in many forms. Watch me fumble towards it at Accidentally Inspired.

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Welcome!  I admire how you've dabbled in the different guilds.  It makes you more rounded.  I left the Druids once (to be a Scout because I love running), but I got lonely out there, came back, and haven't left since.   :redface-new:

 

I really like your goal of becoming "unplugged".  I usually listen to music when I run, but lately, I've been doing without.  There's something very challenging about it that I l simultaneously love and hate.  I feel more in tune with my body and mind, but something about hearing my breathing and my feet hitting the treadmill can unnerve me at times.

 

Good luck to you!  I'm happy you're here and hope you can teach us "tree huggers" a thing or two about the other Guilds.   :frog:

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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Welcome!  I admire how you've dabbled in the different guilds.  It makes you more rounded.  I left the Druids once (to be a Scout because I love running), but I got lonely out there, came back, and haven't left since.   :redface-new:

 

I really like your goal of becoming "unplugged".  I usually listen to music when I run, but lately, I've been doing without.  There's something very challenging about it that I l simultaneously love and hate.  I feel more in tune with my body and mind, but something about hearing my breathing and my feet hitting the treadmill can unnerve me at times.

 

Good luck to you!  I'm happy you're here and hope you can teach us "tree huggers" a thing or two about the other Guilds.   :frog:

 Oh god, if you're running on a treadmill, then by all means, you need to tune out. I can't imagine running without a distraction or 8 on a treadmill.

 

And I will be glad to share some things about the other guilds. Assassins: dress in black and watch your back. Scouts on the other hand -- NEVER look behind you or somebody like Teri or Sue will blow right by you.

  • Like 1

Level 11 Brutish Scoutsassin (That's totally a thing, shut up)

Str: 30 Dex: 26 Sta: 27 Con: 11 Wis: 23 Cha: 18

NerdFitness Trials: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10

Hellfire Club 4LIFE!

Inspiration comes in many forms. Watch me fumble towards it at Accidentally Inspired.

Link to post

It was a gorgeous foggy drizzly morning this morning -- what better time for an unplugged run? I had three gorgeous miles this morning and remembered something I often lose track of when I forget to unplug for a while: running without distractions helps me tune into my breathing and effort level, and when I'm tuned in to my body, I tend to push a little harder... so I finished up with a couple of sprints, and it felt great!

 

Had my first meditation yesterday, and while correlation does not necessarily equal causation, I also spent about 45 minutes working on my writing challenge, and ended up having a hell of a brainwave for a potential future novel. So I'm not saying that my meditation jiggled my brainmeats and left me ripe for inspiration later in the day, but I'm sure it didn't hurt.

 

A day and a half in, and I'm loving this challenge.

Level 11 Brutish Scoutsassin (That's totally a thing, shut up)

Str: 30 Dex: 26 Sta: 27 Con: 11 Wis: 23 Cha: 18

NerdFitness Trials: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10

Hellfire Club 4LIFE!

Inspiration comes in many forms. Watch me fumble towards it at Accidentally Inspired.

Link to post

Oh man I have way better days at school after a good meditation. I think there's a correlation there. What technique are you using?

 

I know nothing about technique. I'm trying out the guided meditations on the "Calm" app. Got any suggestions?

Level 11 Brutish Scoutsassin (That's totally a thing, shut up)

Str: 30 Dex: 26 Sta: 27 Con: 11 Wis: 23 Cha: 18

NerdFitness Trials: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10

Hellfire Club 4LIFE!

Inspiration comes in many forms. Watch me fumble towards it at Accidentally Inspired.

Link to post

My last challenge had me doing 10k steps a day regularly, and I usually ended up taking a walk around my school building during lunch. It's a habit I've maintained. Good way to get moving during the day, lets me catch up on my podcasts.

 

But today there was an extra special surprise.

wpid-20151104_122540.jpg

 

OMG just look at that thing. It was about the size of a quarter, and it totally peed on me.

 

Yay nature!

  • Like 2

Level 11 Brutish Scoutsassin (That's totally a thing, shut up)

Str: 30 Dex: 26 Sta: 27 Con: 11 Wis: 23 Cha: 18

NerdFitness Trials: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10

Hellfire Club 4LIFE!

Inspiration comes in many forms. Watch me fumble towards it at Accidentally Inspired.

Link to post

 

wpid-20151104_122540.jpg

 

 

 

OMG!  You found MEEEE!!  Sorry about the pee…  :lol:

 

  • Like 2
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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That's a good app, I use free mp3s from here

http://marc.ucla.edu/body.cfm?id=22

And recently I've started attending actual classes at a temple which have really taken it to another level.

 

Thanks for the link! I'll be checking those out after I finish the first week with Calm.

Level 11 Brutish Scoutsassin (That's totally a thing, shut up)

Str: 30 Dex: 26 Sta: 27 Con: 11 Wis: 23 Cha: 18

NerdFitness Trials: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10

Hellfire Club 4LIFE!

Inspiration comes in many forms. Watch me fumble towards it at Accidentally Inspired.

Link to post

I always lose track of exactly what day of the challenge we're on. Maybe that's a goal for a future challenge: check in every day so as not to lose track.

 

Anyway: Hard to follow up on finding that gorgeous, adorable little nugget from heaven like I did yesterday, but I did wake up earlier than usual (with no alarm?? Thanks I guess Daylight Savings?) and get my run in. That's 4:30 AM for those keeping score at home. I don't love getting up that early, but it happened by mistake today and, well, I just rolled with it. It was misty when I started, absolutely poured rain on my head while I was out, and returned to a vague pissy-spitty mist by the end of my 5k. I couldn't really find my wind, and my legs felt a little wobbly (probably owing to all the lunges I did yesterday... god I hate lunges), but I ran the second two miles in right around 9'30" each, which is right where I've liked my easy pace lately. So, a good morning!

 

Then, meditation. I am having real trouble staying still comfortably, and I think I'll attribute that to my likely godawful posture. I always feel like I'm hunching over, so I try to straighten up, but then my back starts to feel tight, so I relax forward a little, and then in a moment I feel like I'm hunching again... well. It's a work in progress. Maybe I should try sitting in a chair rather than on the floor, but it seems like the only way to improve my posture is to force myself into it. Eh... I dunno.

 

Finally, writing. A good session this afternoon during my lunch hour, banging out a leisurely 400 words in about twenty five minutes before putting the short stories away and hammering away at the blog for a bit. 400 words is light for the word count I usually aim for, but that's kind of the point of this challenge. Three of five short stories now have introductions, and that's pretty decent progress. I'm not sure about the premises I've picked for the other two, though, so I'm gonna marinate on those before tomorrow's session.

 

And that's day ... 4? 5?

 

Whatever. It was a good day, regardless of what day it was.

 

giphy.gif

  • Like 2

Level 11 Brutish Scoutsassin (That's totally a thing, shut up)

Str: 30 Dex: 26 Sta: 27 Con: 11 Wis: 23 Cha: 18

NerdFitness Trials: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10

Hellfire Club 4LIFE!

Inspiration comes in many forms. Watch me fumble towards it at Accidentally Inspired.

Link to post

I struggled with meditation too because of back issues.  Back issues and a cat that doesn't understand personal space...

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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My pet turtle was the size of a quarter when I got her last year. Now she is the size of my hand. She's a common snapper and will get to be 35 pounds or more. She is my baby.

  • Like 3

We do not rise to the level of our expectations in a fight.

 

We fall to the level of our training.

 

 

 

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You know Pavowski at my temple almost everybody sits in position for an hour, but I don't. I have had my best meditations in the most comfortable position I can be in, which is my feet on the floor. That's one reason yoga is a part of my 6 week challenge this week (which I've yet to do =x ) So if the monks don't call me out in their house, you should feel comfortable using a chair in yours.

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My pet turtle was the size of a quarter when I got her last year. Now she is the size of my hand. She's a common snapper and will get to be 35 pounds or more. She is my baby.

 

A good friend of mine still has a box turtle that she got over ten years ago on about the same growth curve. That thing may outlive her, lol.

Level 11 Brutish Scoutsassin (That's totally a thing, shut up)

Str: 30 Dex: 26 Sta: 27 Con: 11 Wis: 23 Cha: 18

NerdFitness Trials: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10

Hellfire Club 4LIFE!

Inspiration comes in many forms. Watch me fumble towards it at Accidentally Inspired.

Link to post

My ego got a bit of a boost today. I teach high school, and have a bunch of the football seniors in my class. Today, they were shooting the breeze, bragging to each other about their workouts, when one of them asked me real offhandedly, "Coach, what do you bench?"


 


Well, I don't push iron around; I do body weight, and in particular lately I'm working on handstands and L-sits. So I asked the guys which of them thought they had a bit of strength and wanted to square off with an old guy. Naturally the oil slick of teenage testosterone burst into flames and I had a dozen guys, footballers and basketballers alike, lined up to see what I could do. So I busted out a 15-second tucked L-sit.


 


A dozen guys tried it, and none of them could hold it for even a second. I heard one of 'em mumble, walking back to his seat, "Coach is a secret assassin, I think..."


 


Man, that made my day.


 


And then, while out for my lunchtime walk, as I turned the corner around the far end of the stadium, I saw a curtain of rain advancing from the far side of the school building. Needless to say, I spent the second half of my day soaked.


 


But it's Friday, so it's all good. Didn't get any writing done today because of extra meetings (also while soaking wet... that was fun explaining to my colleagues), but I'm ahead of schedule so I'm not stressing.


 


Oh, and I had my 4th meditation of the week this morning. Good stuff.


  • Like 2

Level 11 Brutish Scoutsassin (That's totally a thing, shut up)

Str: 30 Dex: 26 Sta: 27 Con: 11 Wis: 23 Cha: 18

NerdFitness Trials: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10

Hellfire Club 4LIFE!

Inspiration comes in many forms. Watch me fumble towards it at Accidentally Inspired.

Link to post

Man, is it ever going to stop raining in Atlanta?

 

My run today was 4.25 at a brisk 9'07" pace while dodging raindrops. I am sorry to say that I am not very good at dodging raindrops. I'm not sure what changed in the last month or so to start letting me get a little bit of my old pace back, but I am loving it. Pain-free too, which is the absolute bomb.

 

Only two weeks left until Thanksgiving gives me a break at school, and then this challenge is going to get really interesting...

Level 11 Brutish Scoutsassin (That's totally a thing, shut up)

Str: 30 Dex: 26 Sta: 27 Con: 11 Wis: 23 Cha: 18

NerdFitness Trials: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10

Hellfire Club 4LIFE!

Inspiration comes in many forms. Watch me fumble towards it at Accidentally Inspired.

Link to post

Maybe I should try sitting in a chair rather than on the floor, but it seems like the only way to improve my posture is to force myself into it. Eh... I dunno.

I have back issues and sit in a chair when I meditate at home and in my local Buddhist temple. I am not the only guy who sits in a chair at temple, either. (I also practice Tai Chi wearing jeans and not the silly looking uniform.)

  • Like 1

We do not rise to the level of our expectations in a fight.

 

We fall to the level of our training.

 

 

 

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Last night was a kid's birthday party, and man oh man, something I ate did not agree with me. Spent today fighting off a massive headache and weakness all over in the wake of barfing my guts out last night. I had a meditation session this morning, but my heart wasn't in it. Couldn't make myself write this afternoon, either. Or take my lunchtime walk, for that matter.

 

In short, this day fell into a black hole, so let's just pretend it didn't exist. We'll try again tomorrow.

Level 11 Brutish Scoutsassin (That's totally a thing, shut up)

Str: 30 Dex: 26 Sta: 27 Con: 11 Wis: 23 Cha: 18

NerdFitness Trials: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10

Hellfire Club 4LIFE!

Inspiration comes in many forms. Watch me fumble towards it at Accidentally Inspired.

Link to post

Well, this morning we're on the road to recovery. 3.5 unplugged miles with the baby stroller (little sprout was awake at 5 AM, so she got a free ride which ... of course immediately put her back to sleep). 

 

And what can I say -- the unplugged run worked. Brainwaves struck me for my two remaining stories, and I did something I've actually never done before: used the voice recorder on my phone to make notes to myself for later use. I didn't want those thoughts escaping before I got home, lol.

 

Runspiration!

Level 11 Brutish Scoutsassin (That's totally a thing, shut up)

Str: 30 Dex: 26 Sta: 27 Con: 11 Wis: 23 Cha: 18

NerdFitness Trials: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10

Hellfire Club 4LIFE!

Inspiration comes in many forms. Watch me fumble towards it at Accidentally Inspired.

Link to post

I come in and have a great end of the week with an excellent writing session on a Friday, and then I turn on the news...

 

Man. I'm going to need another session tomorrow. My heart is breaking over this news in France. I ... I don't even know what to say.

Level 11 Brutish Scoutsassin (That's totally a thing, shut up)

Str: 30 Dex: 26 Sta: 27 Con: 11 Wis: 23 Cha: 18

NerdFitness Trials: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10

Hellfire Club 4LIFE!

Inspiration comes in many forms. Watch me fumble towards it at Accidentally Inspired.

Link to post

Hey Sweet P, I know, I know. I'm way late getting to ya. How are you?

I love the peeing turtle and the snapper that will get to 35#, holy crappers, snapper.

 

If I'd answered yesterday, I would have told you I was all out of sorts.

 

But today, I've had a run, and during that run, the gods of the random playlist served up some Bob Marley: Three Little Birds. And you know what? After that? I think things are going to be all right.

  • Like 1

Level 11 Brutish Scoutsassin (That's totally a thing, shut up)

Str: 30 Dex: 26 Sta: 27 Con: 11 Wis: 23 Cha: 18

NerdFitness Trials: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10

Hellfire Club 4LIFE!

Inspiration comes in many forms. Watch me fumble towards it at Accidentally Inspired.

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