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MaylaKae Gets a Morning Routine


MaylaKae

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Hi all—

This is my first challenge after lurking around Nerdfitness for a few weeks. I joined a gym at the end of January (with the rest of the n00bs.) I started with spin and BODYPUMP classes. I am grateful to these classes for getting me moving and building my confidence, but BODYPUMP needs to be switched out for some good ol' fashioned weight training if I want to see serious results.

 

Working out is now a solid habit, but my creative practice has been slipping. Here's my plan for integrating all of my hard work and using my time more wisely:

 

MAYLAKAE'S 4 WEEK GOALS

 

1) Set up office by 3/26 MISSION COMPLETE 3/26 :eagerness:

I moved last month, and I have a spare bedroom full of miscellaneous boxes I have yet to unpack. This is meant to be my sacred writing space, but it is clearly not that. This whole morning routine thing would get a lot easier if I had a dedicated space that I enjoyed inhabiting where I can focus.

 

2) Do morning routine for 5 days week of Monday 3/27

Here it is:

  • 5:30am-5:45am Coffee and light breakfast
  • 5:45am-6:15am Journaling and Meditation
  • 6:45am-7:30am Gym (Weight training MWF with HIIT or Cardio alternating)
  • 8:00am-9:00am Shower/Get Ready for Work

Updated version. I bit off more than I could chew:

  • 3/30
    • 6:30am-6:45am Tea/light breakfast
    • 6:45-7:00 Walk dog
    • 7:00-7:30 Journaling and Meditation
    • 7:45-8:30 Weight training M/W/F HIIT/Cardio 1-2 days/week/more writing on rest days
  • 4/3-4/7
    • 6:00am-6:15am Tea/light breakfast
    • 6:15-6:30 Walk dog
    • 6:30-7:15 Journaling and Meditation (more time)
    • 7:30-8:15 Weight training M/W/F HIIT/Cardio 1-2 days/week/more writing on rest days
  • 4/10-4/15
    • 5:45am-6:00am Tea/light breakfast
    • 6:00-6:15 Walk dog
    • 6:15-7:15 Journaling and Meditation (more time)
    • 7:30-8:15 Weight training M/W/F HIIT/Cardio 1-2 days/week/more writing on rest days

 

3) Complete Your Uncle Richard Video by 4/1

Your Uncle Richard? What a creep! This isn't an actual Uncle Richard, but an art project a friend of mine runs in Chicago. My piece goes up 4/3, and I need to get it to the finish line. Check it out if you're into to arty stuff: http://www.yourunclerichard.com/

 

There was a misunderstanding with scheduling, and I am down for the first week of May. Also this is a project where they will send me a prompt and I will have a few days to respond to it. So no pre-planning, which makes it even more risky for me! Stay tuned in early May for updates and a link to whatever it is I come up with. It's a bummer the week was wrong, but it was good that I had a deadline. I ended up creating a pretty solid piece of work I can't wait to share. :-) Now how to self-impose these kinds of deadlines on myself... 

 

4) 30 minutes of social media/internet surfing per day

I waste a lot of time on the internet. Rather than mindlessly scrolling when I feel bored, I should move around, take a walk, and use that time for my writing. If I'm not internetting with intent, I should stay unplugged.

 

UPDATE:

This is going well, so I am going to add another element. I obsessively check email on my phone. Can I challenge myself to only check email (outside of work stuff) 3 times a day?

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Day 1 Progress

  • I did my writing first thing this morning, but everything was a bit hectic. I had a meeting downtown I was running late for and I had trouble getting out the door. I was not completely present during my morning journal session and I did NOT get enough coffee. :sleeping: My routine technically doesn't kick in until Monday, but I wanted to ease into it today. I didn't get to the gym this morning, so I will have to rush out of work to try to get there before the crowd takes over. 
  • I got some notes on my Your Uncle Richard piece last night. They are marinating now, but I think I have a clear path forward to nail it down this weekend. 
  • I kept my social media to a minimum yesterday. I went to a performance (at a bar—where I only had one beer!) and was sitting a lone while I was waiting for friends. My usual impulse is to log into facebook and scroll until a real human approaches me, but I kept my face out of my phone and patiently (yet nervously) observed the people around me. I even talked to a stranger. :applouse:
  • Like 1
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Following along too! I am not an artist but I admire those who are. :) 

  • Like 1

Current Challenge: The Cliffs of Insanity  Previous 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

Battle Log: Operation Fly-By-Night

“Fairy tales are more than true: not because they tell us that dragons exist, but because they tell us that dragons can be beaten.”

― Neil Gaiman

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Thanks y'all!

 

Here's today's update:

 

Day 2 Progress (Saturday March 25th, 2017)

  • Good writing practice and meditation this morning. Slept in a little, but not too much. I woke up refreshed and ready to start the day centered and from a calm place. Writing and meditation first thing (with coffee) makes a huge difference.
    • For those that are curious, I do a 15 minute free write where I do not stop for 15 minutes. Even if I am writing "I don't know what to write" for a few lines. 
    • For meditation, I use a free app called "Insight Timer". There are guided meditations and timed meditations. Today I did an 8 minute timed meditation where I just focused on my own breath. I really love the Tara Brach recordings for when I'm feeling fancy.
  • No gym today. Today was for rest. Though I probably burned a few calories moving furniture, loading/unloading laundry, and setting up my office.
  • I got a little unfocused on the internet today. The Rebellion forum has been a really exciting thing to engage with, but I need to make sure I stay out of rabbit holes. I went down a recipe wormhole when my partner and I were meal planning. We got it done, and groceries were procured, but it got a bit hectic with about 5,000 tabs open. Why does food have to be so good?!
  • I got most of the office done. I checked all tasks off my epic quest except for hanging art. I have unpacked all of the art I want to hang in my new writing space and it is ready for me to mount tomorrow. :applouse:

 

  • Like 2
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Day 3 Progress (Sunday March 26th, 2017)

 

Creativity/Morning Routine

  • Got to write and meditate in my new workspace today! It was a lot easier to focus and energizing to have finally set up my own space.
  • Art is hung. Epic quest complete! :encouragement:
  • Worked on Your Uncle Richard project for 90-minutes.

Workout/Morning Routine

  • I did Steve's HIIT running workout today. I usually go to HIIT class, but I didn't get to the gym in time.
    • It is nice to do my workouts on my own schedule and not stress about getting there before the class is full.
    • I haven't run in a few months, as I have been doing cycling for my cardio and HIIT workouts. I was surprised by how much cycling has helped my running endurance, but it still kicked my butt. 
  • I prepped my workout gear, AM protein shake, and pre-workout snack for a the first day of a full workweek in early-riser mode. 

Interwebz

  • I've stayed focused today. Checked on Facebook to say a few Happy Birthdays, but didn't get too sucked in.
    • It feels good to own my time and make the most of my Sunday—rather than full of regret that I did not accomplish x, y, and z.
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That sounds like an awesome Sunday! I'm happy your new space is vibing for you.

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Current Challenge: The Cliffs of Insanity  Previous 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

Battle Log: Operation Fly-By-Night

“Fairy tales are more than true: not because they tell us that dragons exist, but because they tell us that dragons can be beaten.”

― Neil Gaiman

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Day 4 Progress (Monday March 27th, 2017)

 

Creativity/Morning Routine

  • Day 1/5
  • Got out of bed at 5:45am (goal is 5:30am)
  • Wrote and meditated in the quiet. Morning is a great time for creativity and getting centered. I wish I made it available to myself more often.
  • I am in love with having my own space! It really helps me focus.

Workout/Morning Routine

  • I went to the gym around 7:15 to do weight training workout A
    • Warmup- Goblet Squat 2 x 10 @ 15lbs dumbbell
    • Goblet Squat 3 x 8 @ 10kg kettlebell
    • Incline pushups 3 x 8
    • Row on TRX 3 x 8
    • Ab routine
      • 10 leg raises
      • 15 sec butterflies 
      • 20 sec boat pose
      • 10 reps Hollow Body Hold
      • 30 sec plank bicycling legs
      • 30 sec static plank; rest 15; 15 seconds static plank

Interwebz

  • No desire to overuse social media

Life

  • My dog had to go back to the vet for some biopsies Monday AM. He has a skin condition and has gone for a few tests. Hopefully this helps them figure out what is going on. I had to drop him off at 8:30 then pick him up at 6:30. He wasn't ready until 7 and it kind of derailed our evening. I didn't let it stress me out, but I was exhausted when I got home and ate dinner later than I would like. It impacted my Tuesday morning routine, which I will update later today or tomorrow AM.
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Day 5 Progress (Tuesday March 28th, 2017)

 

Today was my partner's birthday. Yay! We had a nice quiet evening and plan to celebrate more this weekend. 

Note- I had the wrong date on yesterday's post. It should have said 3/27 rather than 3/17. I guess I want to relive Saint Patrick's day?

 

Creativity/Morning Routine

  • Day 2/5
  • Got out of bed at 7:00am (goal is 5:30am)
    • I was so tired and sore. I think with my new strength training practice my body needs 8-9 hours rather than my usual 7 hours. I slept like a log and straight through my alarm.
  • I still made time to write and meditate before work.
    • My days are exponentially more successful when I take 30 minutes to plan my day, prioritize, and center myself.
    • I need to always remind myself of this and make the time no matter what.
  • I  may have bitten off more than I could chew with the 5:30am wakeup. I am going to be kinder to myself for the remainder of the challenge and aim to get up at 6:30 for this week/next, then scale it back to 6:00am the following week.
  • Even when I wake up earlier, I do not get tired until 10:30ish. Since working out more, I need more sleep.

Workout/Morning Routine

  • I planned to do HIIT today, but I was so sore and tired. M/W/F strength training is my focus right now, and I don't want to deplete myself.

Interwebz

  • Kept a safe distance from social media. Once you stop, the withdrawal symptoms go away after a few days.
  • However, I have done this before, and it is just as easy to get sucked back in. 
  • Reflecting on my internet use here helps keep me honest, so this section will stay for awhile.

Life

  • My partner's birthday! We celebrated with a cheesy/carby meal, a beer or two, and some cheesecake.
    • These special treats have derailed me in the past.
    • I ate mindfully and slowly, savoring the treats.
    • I did not over eat, which is a step in the right direction.
    • I only had one beer and drank it slowly. (I am limiting myself to 4 beers/week)
  • Like 1
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Day 5 Progress (Wednesday March 29th, 2017)

 

Creativity/Morning Routine

  • Day 3/5
  • Got out of bed at 7:00am (goal is 6:30am)
    • I woke up with my alarm then hit snooze. Next thing I know I am waking up at 7:00 stressed.
    • Took a breath and got back on track
    • I use my phone as an alarm, I think I am going to get an 'old school' alarm clock this weekend.
      • This will help me keep my phone out of my bed and will make it harder for me to hit snooze and go back to sleep.
  • Still had a productive morning, though I had to push my workout to after work rather than in the AM.
  • Fell asleep around 10pm, which is earlier than my usual. With the increased activity, my body is loving sleep.

Workout/Morning Routine

  • I did my strength training workout today, but not in the morning. It had to wait until 3:30pm
    • Thankfully nothing else came up and the gym wasn't too crowded
    • I began using a training bar for overhead presses. I eventually want to do a barbell workout (similar to Stronglifts 5x5) However, with the exception of squats, the 45lb Olympic bar is a bit out of reach for me right now. One step at a time. :-)

Interwebz

  • Balance is going well
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Day 6 Progress (Thursday March 30th, 2017)

 

Creativity/Morning Routine

  • Day 4/5
  • Got out of bed at 7:00am (goal is 6:30am)
    • I woke up with my alarm then hit snooze. Next thing I know I am waking up at 7:00 stressed. (again)
    • Getting that 'old school' alarm clock this weekend
    • Prioritized writing and meditation over going to the gym. I was going to go there to work on mobility and maybe take a yoga class. It was raining hard most of the day, and I was feeling similar to the weather, so I stayed home

Workout/Morning Routine

  • Worked on mobility. (15 minutes of yoga at home)
  • Starting Stronglifts 5x5 program on Friday (3 days/week).

Interwebz

  • Researching a lot about weightlifting. Trying to stay focused and not go down the YouTube hole. I love planning, but that can sometimes get in the way of actually doing. 

Your Uncle Richard Project

  • I have a final draft of the piece, now I just need to figure out how to turn it into a video. I usually read my poems/pieces out loud at a microphone, but this is meant to be shared on the internet. I want to do a video where the verses are written on cards and flipped through. I need to find something larger than index size so the structure of the verses will fit on the card. I'll check the store after the gym, or I will just cut my own when I get home.
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Day 7 Progress (Friday March 31st, 2017)

 

Creativity/Morning Routine

  • Day 5/5
  • Got out of bed at 6:30am (goal is 6:30am)
    • I did it! I was successful only 2/5 days, but I learned a lot about myself in the process:
      • I tend to set unrealistic goals
      • I am impatient with myself
      • Celebrate incremental wins rather than trying to overhaul

Workout/Morning Routine

Interwebz

  • Watched a few youtube videos today not related to any of my goals. Surfed facebook a little too long on my phone. I stopped myself, but used these things to turn my brain off for awhile, which then made me feel more mentally tired.

Your Uncle Richard Project

  • Wrote cards and took test shots for video.
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Great progress. One of the things I've learned from doing challenges is how to set effective goals for myself (not that I always listen to myself;)) I tend to now make much more achievable goals than when I first started

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Wisdom 22.5   Dexterity 13   Charisma 15   Strength 21  Constitution-13

"Love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your strength, and with all your mind' Luke 10; 27

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Day 8 Progress (Saturday April 1st, 2017)

 

Creativity/Morning Routine

  • Woke up around 8 and took my time. Wrote, meditated, and finalized my project for Your Uncle Richard
  • Doing these things first (before getting overwhelmed with home projects, groceries, cleaning etc.) really sets the tone for my day.
  • I got everything ready for the project, only to find there was a miscommunication about my time slot. My project isn't due until the first week of May and it is in response to a prompt I will receive the day before. At least I have this piece I am proud of. I'll share a link when it is posted. :-)

Workout/Morning Routine

  • Rest day, walked the dog 1 mile in the afternoon.

Interwebz

  • Did ok for an off day. Giving myself some grace. Spent about an hour trolling meal plan ideas and catching up with friends. 
  • A friend invited me to a party and met some great people IRL at that. 

Your Uncle Richard Project

  • Done! 
  • Like 1
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Day 9 Progress (Sunday April 2nd, 2017)

 

Creativity/Morning Routine

  • I didn't write or do any of my routine. I had a lazy Sunday.

Workout/Morning Routine

  • Did HIIT training on the trail for 25 minutes.

Interwebz

  • Lots of internet and TV today. Feeling a bit guilty as I write this on Monday, but a break is ok every now and again, right?
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Day 10 Progress (Monday April 3rd, 2017)

 

Creativity/Morning Routine

  • Woke up at 7. Got out of bed at 7:30.
  • Full of dread (work) and guilt (sleeping in)
  • Did not start off on a good foot
  • Writing and meditation happened after lunch
  • Gym happened after work
  • Tomorrow is a new day.

Workout/Morning Routine

  • Stronglifts 5x5 workout B after work
  • This was my second time using my gym's power rack. The safety pins were out. I panicked, but a nice d00d came over and showed me how to put them back in without making me feel like a n00b. 

Interwebz

  • Not good. Had a bad day. Went down a Jenna Marbles YouTube hole and trolled my social feeds. 
  • Checked my phone way too much.
  • Felt anxious most of the day. Starting the day off from a grounded place is so important to my success. At least I got the things that mattered done (workout and writing/meditation practice.)
  • Like 1
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Day 11 Progress (Tuesday April 4th, 2017)

 

Creativity/Morning Routine

  • Woke up at 6:15 (15 mins after target time. I'll consider it a win.)
  • Journaled and planned for the week
  • Still thinking about to do lists/work a lot
    • This gets in the way of thinking creatively
  • I should consider adding a planning hour or two on Sunday evenings so I don't waste a lot of time on more administrative stuff in the mornings. 

Workout/Morning Routine

  • Rest day. Walked the dog with my partner for about 20 minutes. 
  • Walking is quite easy for me actually. Since moving back to Chicago, I normally walk at least a mile a day using public transit, going to the store, etc. I really took this for granted when I was living down in Tennessee and driving everywhere. 

Interwebz

  • Another anxious day full of mindless browsing
  • My mood hasn't been great this week
  • I ate dates and almond butter and watched the last two episodes of America's Next Top Model
    • It could have been worse. XD
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I'm sorry this week has you on edge, you're still doing a great job on your workouts.

 

How did your Uncle Richard Project turn out?

  • Like 1

Current Challenge: The Cliffs of Insanity  Previous 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

Battle Log: Operation Fly-By-Night

“Fairy tales are more than true: not because they tell us that dragons exist, but because they tell us that dragons can be beaten.”

― Neil Gaiman

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11 hours ago, Elastigirl said:

Great job with the morning routine. I hate those times when I just feel anxious , hopefully you are able to ease that feeling.

 

Having a routine certainly helps! Even if the time factor goes off the rails, I have my priorities and it always gets done (sometimes at lunch or after work.) This is also an exercise in managing my expectations. I am an anxious person, and learning how to be more assertive with my time (instead of quietly upset when something doesn't work out) is also a muscle I am flexing with this challenge.

 

Thanks for the encouragement. It helps to know that others struggle with similar things and are successful. 

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7 hours ago, Kestrel Grey said:

I'm sorry this week has you on edge, you're still doing a great job on your workouts.

 

How did your Uncle Richard Project turn out?

 

Good! There was a bit of a miscommunication about time/format, so I can just use what I created for myself. YUR is a prompt I will have 48 hours to respond to (so no planing. EEK!). It will go up the first week of May.

 

The piece I created is in editing and will be on my website soon. I will share links (to all the projects!) My website hasn't been updated in awhile (hello, next 4 week challenge!), but you can see some of my writing and work at www.kaylamaeanderson.com 

 

Having a deadline was really helpful. I need to learn how to trick myself into that kind of productivity. When I give myself a timeline, I am perfectly fine to let myself down. However, I thought someone else needed it, so I was super on top of it. 

 

This forum helps. :-)

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Day 12 Progress (Wednesday April 5th, 2017)

 

Creativity/Morning Routine

  • Woke up at 6:00!
  • Had a great morning of journaling, meditation, and started my day off with a relaxed and clear head.

Workout/Morning Routine

  • Stronglifts 5x5 Workout A
    • 55lb Squat
    • 30lb Bench Press w/ dumbbells (feeling that this morning as I write this)
    • 45lb Row
    • 3x10 pushups on knees

Interwebz

  • Did well during the day, but watched some weird YouTube for about an hour in the evening. There used to be an app (Rescue Time?) that would block certain websites I had on my computer. I think they stopped updating it an how it's incompatible with my Mac. Anyone have an app they would recommend to block certain sites for a set amount of time?
  • Like 1
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