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FlyingJen starts again!


FlyingJen

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I hope it's ok for me to post here as this is only my second challenge! I joined NF back in April, did my first challenge with the Rebels, and then kind of lost track of things. I've been active in the FB group, but not here, and I want to change that. Part of the problem was that I felt like I was wasting too much time messing about online, but I think posting here is actually useful and I love getting feedback and having a sense of community. 

 

I think I also got ridiculously over-ambitious with my first challenge and burned out by the end. I set myself 16 initial goals, and probably added a few things along the way (that were things I was doing anyway). I tracked everything using a Google Sheets spreadsheet, which worked well, but I ended up just feeling like I was checking boxes for the sake of checking boxes. Since then I switched to an analog tracking system for exercise, meditation, food, mood, time spent on Facebook, as well as my general calendar and work scheduling, which has been working much better for me. 

 

So, for this challenge, I'm drastically simplifying. My goals are:

 

DIET: For the past few weeks I've been trying to reduce my spending on food due to some unexpected and expensive car repairs, as well as realizing that my financial situation isn't as healthy as I'd like. This has actually resulted in forcing me to be more creative and think of ways to use things that have been lurking in my pantry for a long time. I've also been eating healthier as I have only been buying essential items instead of empty snacks. I've also been more mindful of how much food I prepare for each meal, as well as making sure that I'm not throwing out leftovers just because I don't feel like eating them. My goal for this challenge is to continue being mindful about the food I purchase, prepare, and consume, and find new ways to be more cost-effective. 

 

EXERCISE: I have two upcoming aerials performances- next week I'll be performing ambient lyra at a fundraising event at a bar, and in October I'll be performing at a Harry Potter-themed event. I'm doing one act on static trapeze as a Dementor (yay I get another use out of my skeleton bodysuit!), and also a duo lyra act with a girl who is being Harry's stag Patronus. One part of my goal is to work on my Dementor trapeze act.  I'm reworking my ongoing trapeze act which started as Pris from Blade Runner, and then was adapted last year for a Grim Reaper act for Halloween. Hopefully I'll get some good pictures to share! The other goal, which is more long term, is to focus on developing my split. I just turned 39, and although I am far away from having a full split, I want to have it by my 40th birthday. Some time ago I was actively working on improving my split flexibility and made definite progress, so I know I can do it if I really focus on it. 

 

LIFE: I am finally admitting that I have too much credit card debt and my financial habits have been disorganized and ineffective. It's not a huge amount of debt, and I've been sort of ignoring it, but it's not going to go away on its own. I am going to take stock of my expenses and make an actual budget, rein in unnecessary spending, start saving more, and pay down my credit card debt. 

 

I'm looking forward to being more active here! 

 

(The spreadsheet of doom):

April_spreadsheet.jpg.447ae80221b67b01b452ef9c5e44f99d.jpg

(New and improved analog tracking):

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Here is my starting point on my split. It's gotten so bad. I've been working on running this summer, which is great, except it has made my hamstrings and hips tighter. And I haven't been focusing on stretching as much as I could be. When I was focusing on stretching more, I was about 3-4 inches from a full split. Sigh. My left side is definitely worse than my right as my left hip is particularly tight. I wonder if having switched to a standing desk to fix my shoulder problems has also made my legs tighter? 

 

Next up: make a plan/schedule for stretching regularly. Anyone have good resources/stretches/information about how best to stretch/develop a split? 

 

Well, on a positive note, I was pleased that in this photo my legs look more muscular than they used to! :) 

 

 

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Welcome back! I feel you on the go big or go home mentality for first challenges. Too often do we find ourselves wanting to change everything at once and then realizing that most of us struggle when we do that. Remember small steps and habit changes are more helpful in the long run. 

 

Love your simplified goals. A few months ago I finally admitted to myself that I have too much credit card debt as well. My advice, leave the credit cards at home and check your budget everyday or before you go out to buy something. I know I've been thinking of consolidating all my credit card debt but before I do I need to prove to myself that I can follow a budget and not use my cards. You totally got this!

Fitocracy  GoodReads  MyFitnessPal

Spoiler

Previous Challenges: 2020: 1.20  - 2019: 1.19 l 2.19

2018: 1.18 l  2.18 l 3.18 l 4.18 l 5.18 l 6.18 l 7.18

2017: 1.17 I 2.17 I 3.17 I 4.17 I 5.17 l 6.17 l 7.17 l 8.17 I 9.17 l 10.17  

2016: 1.16 l 2.16 l DA v.1 l DA v.2 I DA v.2 Reloaded I DA v.3 I DA v.4 I 8.16 I 9.16 I DA v.5 I 11.16 

2012: 1 2013: 2 l 3 l 4 l 5 l 6 l 7 l 8 2014: 9 l 10 l Not Done Yet l Time to Conquer l  Conquering 

HFC for Life!

 

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The aerial Harry Potter thing sounds really neat! Will there be video, by chance? 

 

Simplicity is definitely a good thing - having too many things to track just gets distracting for me. Sorry to hear about the car repairs, but welcome back, and here's to a great challenge!

Manarelle the Level 56 Amazon Assassin

Challenges: 1-1011-2021-3031-4041-50, 51-60, Current

 

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On 9/22/2016 at 11:33 AM, Jonesy said:

Welcome back! I feel you on the go big or go home mentality for first challenges. Too often do we find ourselves wanting to change everything at once and then realizing that most of us struggle when we do that. Remember small steps and habit changes are more helpful in the long run. 

 

Love your simplified goals. A few months ago I finally admitted to myself that I have too much credit card debt as well. My advice, leave the credit cards at home and check your budget everyday or before you go out to buy something. I know I've been thinking of consolidating all my credit card debt but before I do I need to prove to myself that I can follow a budget and not use my cards. You totally got this!

Thank you! :) 

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DAYS 1 and 2 (9/25/16, 9/26/16): 

 

DIET: My goal for this challenge is to continue being mindful about the food I purchase, prepare, and consume, and find new ways to be more cost-effective. My partner and I went on a mini camping trip this weekend (just one night). Instead of going to the grocery store to get new stuff to prepare for dinner, we checked the freezer and decided we already had everything we needed. I've been trying to limit trips to the store and especially to limit impulse purchases (especially of expensive convenience foods). I did go to the store on Friday but only bought $20 worth of vegetables. My challenge for the coming week is to try to see how far I can get without buying more. We stopped at a new vegan restaurant on the way home from camping, which turned out to be a mistake. It was a brunch buffet for $16/person, which was way too expensive and the food was mediocre. That town also has an all-vegan bakery so we stopped there and got donuts and a tiny chocolate cake for later. Certainly not the best thing for either the food budget or our health but one thing about being vegan is that opportunities to buy baked goods are few and far between so we don't feel bad about the occasional splurge! 

 

EXERCISE: One part of my goal is to work on my Dementor trapeze act (And prepare for ambient lyra performance on 9/29). On Friday I did a run-through with music of the Dementor act. The changes I was thinking of making are going to work out well, and my classmates said it looked great and like it was ready to go! Last week I did two workshops for the ambient lyra performance and was able to come up with enough material to get me through the two 15-minute sets I'll be doing. Another ambient workshop tonight (9/26/16). 

 

The other goal, which is more long term, is to focus on developing my split. I just turned 39, and although I am far away from having a full split, I want to have it by my 40th birthday.  Did a Yin yoga class last week which was great for opening my hips more. Didn't do anything over the weekend as I was camping/hiking/extremely tired and lazy when I got home. Did 20 minutes of stretching this morning (9/26), hoping to do more this evening after the workshop. 

 

LIFE:  I am going to take stock of my expenses and make an actual budget, rein in unnecessary spending, start saving more, and pay down my credit card debt. I have started creating a spreadsheet so we can get a better sense of where our money is going. We have one credit card that is used for household expenses, gas, groceries, and basically anything my partner and I do together (event tickets, etc.). We have set a monthly goal limit to spend on that card. I made a paper that is stuck to our fridge, listing that goal and deducting everything that is purchased so we can see how much we have left for the month. We always pay this card off in full every month, so I hope that my paying less on this card I'll have more money left over to pay toward my personal/business debt. 

 

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DAY 3 (9/27/16): 

 

DIET: My goal for this challenge is to continue being mindful about the food I purchase, prepare, and consume, and find new ways to be more cost-effective. Eating healthier is a great side-effect of this. Went to the grocery store, bought only necessary things. Actually compared prices on some items, which I never used to do. I think our food spending got a little out of control because I started buying almost everything organic. Trying to figure out which things are worth spending the extra money for organic and which aren't. I did end up deciding to spend more for the organic ketchup because the regular kind has high-fructose corn syrup which I don't think is a good thing to be eating. So far I'm actually enjoying the challenge of trying to come up with interesting meals that don't involve running to the store every other day or so to get random/weird/expensive ingredients. It's also good not having things like chips sitting around. Ate leftovers for lunch. Have been experimenting with homemade energy bars for breakfasts instead of buying Clif bars.

 

EXERCISE: One part of my goal is to work on my Dementor trapeze act (And prepare for ambient lyra performance on 9/29). 9/26 ambient workshop went well. Did two 15-minute sets and felt like I didn't get too tired or run out of material. No more practices before the performance on 9/29, but I feel ready for it. My main worry right now is trying to figure out how to do some sort of braid in my short-ish hair. (Everyone is supposed to do a braid of some sort so we look similar). Found out that each person will likely be doing three sets during the evening of the performance, but I think that'll be fine. 

 

The other goal, which is more long term, is to focus on developing my split. I just turned 39, and although I am far away from having a full split, I want to have it by my 40th birthday.  Did not stretch after class yesterday. Did stretch this morning after abs/strength training. Need to start stretching while watching TV instead of just sitting there!

 

LIFE:  I am going to take stock of my expenses and make an actual budget, rein in unnecessary spending, start saving more, and pay down my credit card debt. No real news on this front today. Didn't buy anything today which is good. I think like many things in life, being mindful and aware of what I'm doing is key to being financially responsible. Being mindful of what I am eating, how much I am exercising, how my emotional state is are all things I've been working on, which I think is going to help with the money thing too. 

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DAY 4 (9/27/16): 

 

DIET: My goal for this challenge is to continue being mindful about the food I purchase, prepare, and consume, and find new ways to be more cost-effective. Eating healthier is a great side-effect of this. Ate leftovers for lunch, even though I really wanted a big bowl of noodles. Made dinner using stuff I already had on hand. No new groceries purchased.

 

EXERCISE: One part of my goal is to work on my Dementor trapeze act (And prepare for ambient lyra performance on 9/29). So now the amount of time each of us will get to perform in the ambient performance has been drastically reduced. We were initially supposed to be set up outdoors but the weather isn't looking good, so we have a more limited space and time indoors. Bummer...

 

The other goal, which is more long term, is to focus on developing my split. I just turned 39, and although I am far away from having a full split, I want to have it by my 40th birthday.  Stretched for 10 minutes in the afternoon between work projects, and also for about 30 minutes while watching TV after dinner. 

 

LIFE:  I am going to take stock of my expenses and make an actual budget, rein in unnecessary spending, start saving more, and pay down my credit card debt. Had to buy a new keyboard for my computer because my parrot knocked my beer onto it last night. At least I used having to go to Staples as an excuse for going for a run/walk (Staples is about a 40 minute walk from my house, less time if I run. Running went kind of badly- the air is cooler now which seems to trigger some sort of borderline asthma situation for me. Run/walk there and just walked back since I wasn't going to try to run while carrying a keyboard!) Paid cash for the keyboard. Also bought makeup for the ambient circus performance, but spent a while thinking about what I actually needed and buying the cheapest stuff I could find. Normally I believe in spending extra money for quality things, but I literally wear makeup maybe 2-3 times a year for circus reasons so I'm good with the cheapo stuff! Also paid cash for that.

 

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Oof, I don't even know what happened this month. I totally dropped the ball on this challenge! I think this is a rough time of year for me, even though theoretically I love fall. The dwindling sunlight definitely affects me and my motivation goes kaput. :( 

 

I did stick with my plan of spending less money on food. We set a target amount to spend on our joint credit card for the month and actually stuck to it. It was actually fun to try to use ingredients that I had on hand already instead of always running to the store to get something new. 

 

Stretching splits has been a mixed bag. I have been very inconsistent about it. My plan for November is to combine stretching with watching Lynda.com tutorial videos, which is another thing I've been meaning to do. 

 

The performances were great, although both were affected by bad weather. The ambient lyra performance was supposed to be a couple of 15-minute sets on an outdoor rig, but it was pouring rain, so we got moved to an indoor stage area and had to work around scheduled music performances. So each of the 10 student aerialists only got to perform for 5 minutes each, and there wasn't even really anyone watching. It was still a ton of fun though and I got to run around a fancypants $300/ticket event when I was done performing. 

 

The Harry Potter Dementor performance was also made a bit unpleasant as it was very cold, windy, and drizzly. It was definitely challenging. But it was also amazing to perform at such a fun event and I'm pretty happy with how it went. The promised video: 

 

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Sorry to hear the performances got a bit screwy; the video looks great though! Thank you for posting it! 

 

Fall is a tough time for solar-powered people. I just want to curl up and sleep til the sun comes back and I don't have to wear long sleeves again. Congrats on hitting the budget goal! Is that something you want to carry over to the next challenge? 

 

Hope to see you in the new forums!

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Manarelle the Level 56 Amazon Assassin

Challenges: 1-1011-2021-3031-4041-50, 51-60, Current

 

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12 hours ago, Manarelle said:

Sorry to hear the performances got a bit screwy; the video looks great though! Thank you for posting it! 

 

Fall is a tough time for solar-powered people. I just want to curl up and sleep til the sun comes back and I don't have to wear long sleeves again. Congrats on hitting the budget goal! Is that something you want to carry over to the next challenge? 

 

Hope to see you in the new forums!

Thanks! I am continuing the budgeting challenge, although it is not explicitly part of my next challenge. Keeping it simple this time around! :)

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That video was fantastic, such strength!

Fitocracy  GoodReads  MyFitnessPal

Spoiler

Previous Challenges: 2020: 1.20  - 2019: 1.19 l 2.19

2018: 1.18 l  2.18 l 3.18 l 4.18 l 5.18 l 6.18 l 7.18

2017: 1.17 I 2.17 I 3.17 I 4.17 I 5.17 l 6.17 l 7.17 l 8.17 I 9.17 l 10.17  

2016: 1.16 l 2.16 l DA v.1 l DA v.2 I DA v.2 Reloaded I DA v.3 I DA v.4 I 8.16 I 9.16 I DA v.5 I 11.16 

2012: 1 2013: 2 l 3 l 4 l 5 l 6 l 7 l 8 2014: 9 l 10 l Not Done Yet l Time to Conquer l  Conquering 

HFC for Life!

 

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