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Novice Assassin Brian


brianhicks

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Hi all!

 

This is going to be my first challenge as an Assassin. I just finished my initiation as a Rebel last challenge, so it's time to specialize!

 

By way of introduction, I work as a computer programmer in St. Louis, MO. I love doing freerunning/urbex type activities and biking, but some knee injuries and a general lack of flexibility mean that I'm cooped up and not doing much of that anymore. Well, time to get back on that horse bike and ride!

 

There's going to be a boss fight in this challenge period: I'm traveling to Berlin for a week to attend a conference. I'm going to have less control of my diet (the organizers of this conference series provide food but so far they've all been very carby) and less opportunity to exercise, not to mention the 7 hour timezone shift. Gonna have to go into Batman mode for that one!

 

Goals

 

Here's a public spreadsheet that I'll be using to keep track of goals: https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1jlc0P5UpiN-Zn2auuVJFviLsLmSs9KrTLOi3K0lkQP0/edit?usp=sharing I'll be posting about updates here, so that's just to keep track of the mechanics.

 

Exercise

 

I'm going to be doing the Recruit workout from the NF academy until it stops being super hard (right now I can barely get through two of the three sets.) Afterwards, I will start the bodyweight brigade workouts. That's Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday. I'd rather do MWF but I drive ~1 hour into the office on Mondays and Fridays, so that's going to be really difficult. I'm going to start this on Friday (weird week, I'm going in on Thursday instead of Friday.) On off days, I want to do yoga. I really need to improve my flexibility, since that will help my knees a lot. Last challenge, I tried tried to do yoga as a separate challenge goal, but I'm combining them this time for ease of grading.

 

Grading:

  • 16 of 18 workouts: A and 25xp
  • 14 of 18: B and 20xp
  • 12 of 18: C and 15xp
  • 10 of 18: D and 10xp
  • Less than 10: Failure and 0xp

Diet (Freggies and Carbs and Sugars oh my!)

 

Last challenge I tried to change my eating habits by swapping out carbs for freggies. I started under the false impression that all carbs are bad. Well, that's not far from the truth, but my wife had a come-to-Jesus talk with me about what exactly I was doing because of my goal: instead of eating not-so-bad carbs like rice, I was eating no carbs at all most meals, but when I did eat them it was really bad. French fries, Red Lobster biscuits in excess, and the like.

 

So this time instead of grading on a all-or-nothing scale I'm going to be giving myself a score between 0 and 1 for every meal for each of freggies, carbs, and added sugar. (If that's confusing, I've got a spreadsheet that clarifies a little.) Then I'll be grading on percentage. I've got to give myself a little grace here, but I think I can do much better than last time.

 

Grading:

  • 85% towards score goals: A and 25xp
  • 75% towards score goals: B and 20xp
  • 65% towards score goals: C and 15xp
  • 55% towards score goals: D and 10xp
  • Below 55%: Failure and 0xp

Life

 

I've never been great at prioritizing what I need to do in life, and things tend to fall through the cracks. Well, that really can't happen anymore. My wife and I are pursuing an adoption, and after bumbling my way through all the paperwork for the state-certified nice people bit I realized I'm sick of being unorganized. I've used OmniFocus lightly in the past, so I got the upgrade licenses to the most recent version and I'm going to be using that. I really like it so far because of a dedicated review mode - when I'm feeling stressed out about things, I can go look at the projects that need review and make some decisions. That tends to calm me down, oddly. Anyway, I'm not going to get far on this if I don't make a habit of using it every day, so my goal is to look at OF first thing in the morning and try to figure out what my day is going to look like. If things fall apart after that I can't be blamed, but I'm done using the excuse of "things might fall apart" as an excuse not to plan.

 

Grading:

  • 25 of 28 days: A and 25xp
  • 21 of 28 days: B and 20xp
  • Less than 21 days: failure and nothing. No C and below on this, because once I drop below about 75% I'm basically not going to be planning at all.
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Level 1, AWRIGHT


Rodian Novice Assassin (character sheet)


Current Challenge (2 1)

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Update The First:

  • Freggies 'n carbs 'n sugars: yas. Started off fairly badly (because I forgot the challenge started on 2/1) but now I'm up to 71.57% of possible points.
  • Exercise: done 100% so far of 1 scheduled yoga session. Tomorrow is the first bodyweight workout.
  • OF: 50% of possible points, because 2/1 and 2/2 were no-gos. Every day since has been good. It's been helpful to look at it the evening before, as well, then spot-checking in the morning. Choosing a bunch of little tasks and a big task for the day has yielded good results so far.

So: kind of boring! But I'm going to count that as a win, biding my time before the boss fight next week.

  • Like 1

Level 1, AWRIGHT


Rodian Novice Assassin (character sheet)


Current Challenge (2 1)

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Quick update: I managed to touch my toes without bending my knees for the first time ever today. Briefly, and I rally had to try, but I did it! Yay!

 

Hooray!

 

I don't know if this will make things easier or not, but I find doing a two minute wall sit (scooting up the wall if it gets too tiring, as opposed to shortening the wall sit) helps me bend over farther when touching my toes. Apparently it helps with stabilizing muscles, which in turn allow greater flexibility.

 

I think I found this in an old issue of Bicycling Magazine or something.

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Jothra

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

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Allllright, time to face the music. I totally wimped out on my workout yesterday. I was cold and just didn't wanna do it. I paid for it, though, in that my back and knees were sore all day because I wasn't moving around. Did my yoga today though. Yog'd it up!

 

But enough of that, time for THE FINAL COUNTDOWN to my 2nd challenge boss: GERMANY.

 

1474598_200x130.png

 

GERMANY appears in the distance. A hulking mass of temptations to bad habits. What do you do?

 

Brian goes to bed early! +1 buff against jet lag!

 

You pack your bags two days early to not be stressed for the flight, and start going to bed an hour earlier each day to prepare for the boss' most potent attack, jet lag. It recoils in terror at your preparedness!

 

Brian uses "pack early", an airport-level charm.

 

The creature will now put up less of a fight!

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Level 1, AWRIGHT


Rodian Novice Assassin (character sheet)


Current Challenge (2 1)

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Right! Thanks for the reminder. I was going to post more here, but honestly it was exhausting.

 

Food-wise, I did pretty well. I ate more or less the same as in the states, but with a bit more beer.

 

Exercise I totally bombed on. The floor was hard, cold, and very slippery in my hotel room, and most mornings I had to get going immediately (jet lag was not helping!) In future conferences this year, I think I'm going to move my exercise to when I get back to the hotel in the evenings, if possible. I'm taking as a consolation prize that I walked much more than normal; in the week I was there I walked 36.41 miles, about 3 times my normal distance.

 

OmniFocus goal I aced, but it was honestly mostly because I didn't have any work scheduled there, it was all on the conference schedule. I did use it to remember to take my knee pills, which I did with astonishing regularity (missed maybe 2.) That habit is really building up, which makes me quite happy.

 

Overall, I'm going to have to give myself a 50% or so for this boss… it kicked my butt, especially with the jet lag and travel stress. BUT next time will be better. Time to pick myself back up and get on the BWW horse for tomorrow's scheduled workout.

 

tumblr_m7loanYOmr1qlhhx4o3_500.gif

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Level 1, AWRIGHT


Rodian Novice Assassin (character sheet)


Current Challenge (2 1)

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I don't know many people who beat a boss on the first go, but it sounds like you did pretty well on a food standpoint (it's Germany, no one does beer like them). Next time you know a few of the boss's moves, and where to roll to avoid them. Maybe taking a mat would help with the hard, slippery floor? 

What are you taking for your knees?

Current Challenge: System Reboot

Last Challenge:Installing, Please Wait

Previous Challenges:23 22 21 20 19 18 17 16 15 14 13 12 11 10 9 8 7 6 5 4 3 2 1

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Thanks! I'm definitely going to take a mat next time… although the rest of my conference travel for the year so far is in the U.S. where we have reasonably tractiony carpets in hotel rooms.

 

The knee medicine is just an anti-inflamatory.

 

right. It's now time for the CHALLENGE #2 WRAP-UP.

 

giphy.gif

 

Food: I limped across the finish line today by eating a giant apple fritter. Moment of weakness! But overall, I finished with 75.37% of possible points, barely getting a B and 20XP.

 

Exercise: Because of the German boss fight going badly, 12 workouts of 18 completed. But that does mean that I get a C and 15XP.

 

Life Goal: Why are these so much easier than the food and exercise goals for me? I may be thinking too small. Regardless, this one's an A. I actually have got a lot more done in this challenge period than previous because I knew what I should be working on each day. This is a habit I hope to continue.

 

I've got some interesting ideas for next time, but they don't necessarily fall under what it seems like are normal assassin quests. They involve focusing on flexibility and mental soundness via yoga and meditation, respectively. That sounds like druid stuff, but I think I'll stick around here since I fully intend to get back to bodyweight workout quests in future challenges.

  • Like 2

Level 1, AWRIGHT


Rodian Novice Assassin (character sheet)


Current Challenge (2 1)

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A lot of us use yoga and meditation; I'd say if those were your main goals the druids might be more your speed (that's where you'd find the most help, and they'll be more than glad with any in depth pointers an assassin might need ;) ) but if it's not your main goal so much as a means to an end, it fits in with most of the guilds to some degree. 

Current Challenge: System Reboot

Last Challenge:Installing, Please Wait

Previous Challenges:23 22 21 20 19 18 17 16 15 14 13 12 11 10 9 8 7 6 5 4 3 2 1

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