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Thursday, January 18, 2018

Stepping it up - 2 Weeks in

Yeah, I know that I'm just approaching 3 weeks worth of making sure I get my steps in but honestly I am feeling good about it.

Strike that - it bloody well sucks.

Last year I had a goal of 10k every day and I did really well until my Plantar Fasciitis started acting up horribly.  Then sometime in September or October I absolutely destroyed my Fitbit.   So, The year was wasted but near the end of it I started to feel better.

Once the pain was gone I decided that I needed a new Fitbit and that I was going to resume my 10k everyday to make sure that I get more exercise in and start working on being a healthier me again.

So, New Years Even I bought a new (to me) Fitbit from a pawnshop for a great price and on January 1st I started working on my goals.

Then I decided to get stupid and signed up for StepBet and they gave me my goals where only one day a week am I allowed to get under 15k.   Oh well, I have money riding on it so what the hell right?

Here I am, January 18th and my feet are killing me.  I'm regularly having to take extra walks to get my steps in and I am feeling it.  I know that as I get into the routine and start losing weight that it will all get easier and I know that in the long run this is all good for me. I get it, that fact is not lost on me.
But damn, it sure does suck getting there.

So Week 1 was a "warm up" week where you can fail and it won't count against you.  So, while I didn't hit my goals it wasn't 100% my fault because I signed up on the last day of Week 1 without knowing what my goals would actually be and during this time period I was just focused on getting that 10k goal.

So, my week 1 results.

If I were signed up earlier and knew my goals this week would have been pretty easy to salvage.  The 14,681 day would have been easy to add on a 1k step walk at the end of the night to hit my goal.  Then on the 18,208 day I could have easily added an additional 500 steps or so to hit my stretch goal thus giving me 2 days with the stretch goal and only one day where I was under my minimum (the 1st).   Easy Peasy.

Week 2 looks like this
Friday was the day where I failed (but you are allowed one "rest" day per week) and Thursday and Saturday I hit my 2 mandatory stretch goals.

However - the day that started the suck off was Tuesday.   You see, I was off of work Monday and Tuesday and on my days off I need to make sure that I am taking a couple of good walks through the day to hit my goals.  Tuesday I did not get many steps in and so after we all got home from doing whatever the hell we did that day I only had like 3k steps in and needed to get another 12.5 in.   Thus I went for what I deemed would be a long walk.
2 hours and 4 minutes later I had hit my daily goal and was tired as hell.
It wasn't until the next day that I learned what kind of punishment this fat man put his feet through - they were sore as hell and getting through my work day sucked.

It took a couple of days for the soreness to go away but eventually I started feeling mostly normal again.   However, having to push myself every single day is a pain in the ass but i know in the long run it will be worth it and dammit I am just not willing to lose the $40 that I paid to sign up for this StepBet.

This particular game started with 1892 players and with less than 2 real weeks down we are down to 1724 people left in it.  So we've lost over 150 players already and I'm hoping as the weeks go on that number continues to climb a good deal more so that when all is said and done I at least show a minor profit from this 1st 6 week challenge.

I already know that I will sign up for a second one after this and that will push me to Mid April or so and at that point I'll probably have to take 3 weeks off from the competition and just try to focus on getting 10k every day so that I can try to get my full year in.

The reason I'll have to take the time off is because when our baby girl is born I'll be taking 3 weeks off of work to help my wife out with the baby at home and I just don't have the confidence that I'll be able to hit those big goals for 3 weeks straight without being at work and being forced to talk around all day there.

Hopefully in the near future I'll get a day to play some poker so that I can start reporting to y'all on that front especially since this whole bloody thing was started back in 2011 (though it actually went back further when I was poker blogging on All Vegas Poker and then PokerNow before they were both bought out, swallowed up and destroyed) as a poker blog.

Also hoping that one of those gaming sessions is with everyone's good buddy Lightning36 when he hits up Vegas even though I'll be hanging out with him in a non poker fashion at some point.

It's 9:30 and my toddler is almost sleeping which means that shortly I'll be able to sneak off into another room and get a little video game time in.   The joys of being a parent!!

Friday, January 12, 2018

That old bloody computer is dead

Here we are, new year and new random expense because technology decides that it no longer wants to work.  Yep, but the reality of the situation is that I have been wanting to upgrade for a long time as that old dog needed put down.

The other day I was getting ready to guest on a random podcast (which hopefully I'll get to within the next week or  two) and while just randomly browsing the internet (non porn sites) it BSOD (Blue Screen of Death for those who didn't suffer through Windows 95, 97, XP, etc).   It then said that it was going to gather info and reboot.  After the info was gathered it rebooted it went into a cycle where it said it was repairing the disc and would reboot.

I left the room and later went to bed.  I woke up the next morning and it was still doing the same thing, over and over and over.

So, I rebooted it and then it would only come to a screen that would not let me boot, would not let me do anything.  In fact, it told me that the boot partition was unreadable - complete and utter hard drive failure.

So, I bought a new computer and (my wife just asked me if I liked it and then said she just wishes that I would have gotten the one I really wanted instead of settling for this - man I love that woman) it arrived today.

The keyboard is more comfortable.  I hit the track pad thingie a lot less often.  It's kinda cool looking that the keyboard is backlit but at the same time I realize that is because too many people have not learned to type properly and if it is dark they need some sort of help to find the right letters.

So now it is just a matter of downloading and installing the programs that I use regularly.

The first thing I did was went to download Google Chrome instead of Microsoft Edge.  On the search page MS takes up the top quarter of the website giving you reasons why Edge is better than Chrome.

Then I went to to log into my Gmail account and Google has a popup that tells me I should install Chrome as it is a better browsing experience.

Christ, I might have to start using Web Crawler again so I don't have to deal with this kind of peer pressure.

So far this year I have hit my step goal every single day.  I'm over 10k today but I'm still about 1200 steps away from my ultimate daily goal but here I sit typing away at this blog and not going for a walk and telling myself it is ok to slack since I work at the butt crack of Dawn tomorrow morning.

Hope everyone else out there is having a fabulous 2018.  I think I'm going to go take a quick walk so that I can get those 1200 steps in and feel better about life.

Saturday, January 06, 2018

It's Been One Week

Since you looked at me, Cocked your head to the side and said I'm crazy.
One week since I made the change, went to a new store and feeling the lovey-dovey.

What a difference a week makes.

Leaving a situation where you feel like you were being blackballed and going into an environment where everything is more friendly and accepting.  I know it has only been a week but overall this change has been very positive for me and it is nice to be back in the store I am working in.

I've only had my fitbit back and functional for about a week now but already I can feel myself checking my steps and making excuses to take a little walk to get more steps in.

I think I've decided that I'm going to give StepBet a try as extra motivation.

For those of you who haven't heard of it, it is basically an App on your phone that looks at your data from Fitbit or whatever step tracking software you have and creates a weekly goal for you.
From there it breaks it down into daily goals on 4 days, 2 days of stretch goals where you need to push yourself to get more steps in and then a day of rest.

At the beginning of the competition you put up some of your own money and enter a competition with a bunch of like minded people.  Your first week is a feeling out week where you are allowed to make a mistake without consequences.   However, week 2-6 you have to hit your daily goals and your stretch goals or you are booted out.

If you finish the competition by hitting all of your goals then you win and get your money back plus a little.  The extra comes from those poor schmucks who didn't have the desire and determination to win money and instead figured the money didn't matter then failed.

Me?  The Money Matters and I'm curious to see if I put a buy-in on this site and hit it up hard all year long how much my money will grow.

I've already downloaded the App but when I go to get into it I am told that it needs more data from my Fitbit in order to calculate my goals.  So, now I wait until that threshold is met and see what it will spit back out at me.

In other news the Podcast that I am a part of has finally gone live.
It is in the iTunes store and I believe on GooglePlay as well.
Search it out, it is called Backlog Busters (and linked to the rss feed as well).
This is our first attempt at doing anything like this so forgive us as we take some time and fumble around while reaching our comfort zone.

My game for January is Uncharted 3 and I am about 1/3rd of the way done with it.  I truly love the Uncharted series as it feels like you are playing an action movie.  Also, this game makes me miss the National Treasure movies - Nick Cage should make more of those as they were a modern day Indiana Jones.
Trashturkey's game for the month is Hyperlite drifter and from what I understand he has been lazy and slacking in getting video game time in.  Everyone give him 20 lashes with a wet noodle.

The only other real news I have is that my phone died and my replacement arrived. 
There appears to be one setting that is messed up (and unless I can find a way to fix it I am blaming it on a software update).

Normally when I connect my headphones to blue tooth and then get into my car for my drive to work my phone will automatically switch the connection from my headset to the car.

Then when I am ready to leave the car and walk from the parking lot to work I turn my headset back on and the phone switches the connection back to my headset from my car stereo.

The current problem is that when it is switching from my headset to the car stereo it is putting my volume the whole way to zero every single time.
So now I have to turn it back up and during that time it goes from no noise to bloody ear piercing loud and then back to a quiet low volume causing chaos with my ears.
Not only does it cause chaos but it is annoying as hell.   I shouldn't have to adjust my volume every single time that I am changing connections and it has never worked like this before.
Not on the previous phone which broke (which is the same phone...) and not on the phone before that which I was using for 3 years.

I'm hoping this is something that will be fixed with a software update because I am not finding any hidden settings that explain this behavior or allow me to change it.

Hope y'all are having a wonderful 2018 so far and always remember to

Monday, January 01, 2018

Hello 2018 - I'm so glad you have arrived

You know how they say that you should send the year out with a bang?  Well, 2017 was so horrendous that it sent me out with a bang instead.

First up was a computer crash where I couldn't get it to boot up properly and it kept going to a diagnosis screen that told me there was an issue and once it gathered all of the data it would reboot itself and try to boot again.
It stayed on that screen for multiple hours before I gave up on it.

Then my new phone decided to completely freeze up on me and nothing that I could do (nor anyone else) would actually get the screen to come on.  So here I sit waiting on a replacement phone to come in the mail.  Luckily my old phone still works (although with bad battery life) so that I can function properly over the next few days until my new (new) phone arrives (again).

All that said, 2018 is still looked damned good.

So, with that being said what do I want 2018 to look like for me.

The biggest goal is the financial goal because we ARE buying a house.
This means that every single month I have to do a budget and I will be looking back over it every week to see if I am on track or if I can make some changes.

My main form of budgeting will be through the Everydollar app provided by Dave Ramsey and company.  However I do plan on creating a spreadsheet and utilizing that because I'll have more control over what I can do with a spreadsheet than what the app allows me to.

After Financial comes Physical because they start with the same letter.

Last year my goal was to do 10k steps every single day and I was on track until a horrible case of Planter Fasciitis started acting up.  I've been dealing with it off and on for at least a decade but this past year it was so bad that half way through most of my days I could barely walk and it stayed this way for about 9 months.  Every single day was a struggle just to get through a work day with an extreme amount of pain.

Luckily a a bunch of stretching exercises every single day and a brace on my foot at night made it so that I am now back to normal and I am not having those issues. 
So, Now I want to pick up where I left off and get back to making sure I get my daily steps in.
I have a tab started on the main blog page where I will be tracking it, usually updating it once a week.

I also plan on eating better and tracking my calories in order to hopefully start losing weight.
I started today, January 1st 2018 at 278 pounds which is higher than I thought I was at and I need to
make a change.

To exercise my mental muscles I will be continuing to listen to Podcasts and Audiobooks and my goal is to read an actual book (with my eyes) via my Kindle or actual paper one book every two months. 

And finally, that brings us to the Creative side.
I've been neglecting my creative side for quite a while.

So, I want to get back to this, the blog post.
I might not be much but I enjoy having some time to sit down with just my thoughts and some tap tap tapping keys and see what comes of it.
Every time I actually get around to writing a post I remember how much I miss it and the reason I don't do it more often is because I don't make it a priority in my life.  So for 2018 I am making it a priority to, at least, once a week give myself an hour or so to sit in front of the computer screen and churn out something y'all hopefully find interesting.

I will also be recording 1 podcast every month dealing mostly with video games and catching up on games I have missed over the last few years.

I will also spend more time watching comedians perform.  Chat up my good friend Linda Lou (she hasn't written in a year and a half, talk about slacking) and work towards embarrassing myself in a way I have not done yet.

So, with all of that being said I am trying to start out 2018 on the right foot and keep it going.

Yesterday I went to a local pawn shop and bought a new (to me) Fitbit to replace the one that broke several months back.  The journey to 10k everyday starts with the first day and I will get there (i'm nearly half way there already). 
I wrote this up for y'all and I've got a couple of podcasts ready to roll or when I take a walk later today.
I did my January budget yesterday and based on my estimated income I had an extra $50 to throw into savings and I have a couple of items I am debating cutting out in order to increase my saving power.
I'll charge my kindle later so that I can start reading but I'm not sure if I should try to finish the last book I was working on (a book about Krampus) or if I should pick something else out and start fresh.

Yes yes y'all - 2018 is going to be an amazing year and I hope it is for all of you grrouch-a-holics as well.