A New Beginning – November 20

einstein_www-txt2pic-com

I have been pondering whether I need a local college team to root for here in RVA.

I should note that I’m not a huge college sports fan.  My alma mater, Edinboro University of Pennsylvania, is a very small college and competes in the PSAC and NCAA Division 2.  I have certain ties to Penn State through one of my oldest friends and Pittsburgh through my dad.  There is only one college sporting event I watch every year.  The Army/Navy game (12/13/14, yes, seriously).

But college sports are big down here and I feel like I need a rooting interest.  By sheer volume, the local leader appears to be Virginia Tech (VT), with the University of Virginia (UVA) coming in second.  The truly local teams would be either Virginia Commonwealth (VCU) or the University of Richmond (UR).  I have local friends with connections to both UVA and VT, not sure about the other two.

Proximity would go to UR, then VCU, UVA and VT.  Both VCU and UVA are currently ranked in the top 20 in basketball.  On the other hand, I don’t much like basketball.  None of the football teams are in the top 25 in the nation.  VCU plays only club level football, UR plays in the CAA (currently in fourth place), UVA and VT play in the ACC (where they are currently 7th and 5th respectively in the Coastal Division, bracketing Pittsburgh).

Even if expand the criteria to things beyond sports (Theater programs, Film, Creative Writing) we arrive at a virtual dead heat again.

So I’m perplexed.  There are other, smaller colleges in the area as well.  Coming from a small college I certainly don’t want to ignore them.

I’ll have to keep working on this.  I wonder if anyone would like to offer some input (he said with his tongue stuck firmly in his cheek).

  • 1175 days without a (proven)rude Virginian.
  • NaNoWriMo update: I have hit a serious slump at the moment, but I have 24,072 words written.  So it’s still possible to pull off the goal.  Just need to buckle back down.
  • I have been deeply affected by the weather back in WNY.  In 30 years living there, I never saw a storm like that one.  My prayers are with all the folks in the snowbound areas.  More snow is predicted in the next couple days followed by a massive warm up and rain.  Which means flooding is next.  Be safe, my friends.

It’s a new beginning.

Leave a comment

Filed under Food, New Beginning, personal, Writing

Time to Get Real – Week of November 18

weight-loss-3

Deep breath.

We’re into an area we haven’t been in months.  And that’s very, very good news.

Exercise was a little better but I hardly became a gym rat.  The big difference is that moved some light weight work into the routine.  I can honestly say that I feel the difference even with only a couple days of light work.

Food was very good.  Had breakfast and lunch completely under control which allowed me to enjoy dinner.

And the results were good.  What I can’t forget is that the last time I was here (and even a little lower) I didn’t maintain.  The next milestone is in sight.

My resolution remains :

I want to am going to be The Guy again.

The next milestone is getting back below 190.  I will get there and go on.

Official Weigh In Weight

192.6 pounds

Weight Change this week – -1.4 pounds

Total Weight Loss To Date – 12.2 pounds

Goal Weight and Total to Lose – 175/30

Leave a comment

Filed under personal, Weight Loss

A New Beginning – November 13

einstein_www-txt2pic-com

NaNoWriMo update:  I am just slightly behind the goal at the moment.   I started off very well, getting as much as 3,000 words ahead of the timeline (we call it “the curve” in my family).  Then I had a couple of things get in the way – The Kid got sick for a day, meetings, just general busyness.  The Kid’s day long sick is a problem because she’s sleeping in the room where my computer lives.  By the time I’d gotten through those challenges I had fallen 2,000 words behind the curve.  Since the goal is 50,000 words a 5K swing is a potential problem.

Fortunately, I’ve had several really good days and I’m now within 900 words of the goal as of yesterday.   That’s pretty happy making.

What is starting to worry me is if there is enough of this novel left to make the monthly goal.  The project I’m working on is my novel “The Hidden Race” which I started as a NaNoWriMo project five years ago.  It was my first shot at the concept and I made the 50K word mark.  Unfortunately a variety of issues got in my way over the next couple years and I haven’t completed the book yet.  For the purists out there I will note that I am doing entirely new writing on the project for this year.

But the problem is that I’m closing in on completing the story telling of the novel.  I am filling in gaps here and there and fleshing out places that were a little thin.  Whether or not it will take 30K more words is the question.  In the end finishing the story is more important than hitting the NaNoWriMo goal.

So we’ll see.  In the meantime my novel writing is inhibiting my blog post writing!  So many words!

And it feels good.

  • 168 days without a (proven)rude Virginian.
  • Fall has finally arrived in RVA.  The colors are not as vibrant as WNY/WPA.  At the same time the colors have been beautiful.  Fall is one of my favorite times of the year.  One of the qualities we were looking for in a place to live is that it have four seasons.  Great to see my favorite in our new home.
  • Still on a break from all the run go look see do.  Which is fine because my job is getting busier, more youth events and things to attend.  Which is cool.  Looking ahead to whatever the next big event will be though.  It’s another part of what makes living here so great.

It’s a new beginning.

Leave a comment

Filed under Food, New Beginning, personal, Writing

Time to Get Real – Week of November 11

weight-loss-3

A small regression.

It’s clear that this is a tipping point weight for me.  I’ve struggled at this point repeatedly over the last couple months.

I knew I was in a little trouble.  My pants had finally gotten a little looser prior to the past week.  Then late in the week I suddenly realized they were starting to bind just a little again.

Eating was OK but exercise fell off badly.  I know I need to add some new things to my routine and I just can’t get excited about it.  Exercise is always the stumbling block for me.  I’ve done pretty well with cardio exercise (walking and jogging) but at some point I need to add to resistance (weights).  I know it, I’ve done my research and I’m ready to go.

Except I’m not ready.  Too many excuses. Gotta get over that hump.

The good news is that I noted the problem last week and didn’t let it spin out of control.  A good week and we can move in the right direction again.

So it has to happen.  I’m not stopping here.

My resolution remains :

I want to am going to be The Guy again.

The next milestone is getting back below 190.  I will get there and go on.

Official Weigh In Weight

194.0 pounds

Weight Change this week – +0.8 pounds

Total Weight Loss To Date – 10.8 pounds

Goal Weight and Total to Lose – 175/30

Leave a comment

Filed under personal, Weight Loss

A New Beginning – November 6

einstein_www-txt2pic-com

It’s November.  And once again I have dedicated myself to a month long ordeal and creative experiment.

It’s NaNoWriMo.

That’s National Novel Writing Month.  The goal is to write 50,000 words of a novel in the 30 days of November.  This is one of the great passions of The Kid.  She is, of course, an MFA Creative Writing candidate right now.  Writing is probably the greatest passion in The Kid’s life.  Five years ago she roped me into trying as well.  I have written short stories on and off since high school.  In many ways the short story is my favorite writing length.  The challenge of communicating the story in the span of a few pages, a few thousand words.  In fact many of my stories probably fall into the category of “flash fiction”.  Short-shorts.

So writing a long form story was a challenge.  The Kid assured me that I shouldn’t worry about not making the goal, most folks don’t on the first try.  So I promptly hit 50k with several days to spare.  My plan had been to take a little while off (writing that intensively is exhausting) then write the additional 30,000 words I needed to properly fill out the story.

I had been dawdling along with that task until October of the following year when something interrupted my life.

I’ve tried to go back to the novel a couple times without success.  This year seemed like a good time to dive back in.  I’m writing this five days into November and I’m passed the 11,000 word mark already.  So I’m ahead of the curve.

And it feels good.

  • 161 days without a (proven)rude Virginian.  I do need to note that when Virginians go for the horn on the car they do it with a vengeance.  Do not expect a polite little toot here.  If they feel the need to honk they commit to it.
  • A week into November and I was in shirtsleeves yesterday.  I am absolutely NOT trying to rub it in on my friends north of here.  This is more utter amazement.
  • We’ve really taken a break from the go-go-go lifestyle.  The Kid has the big social life right now.  Which,when combined with NaNoWriMo, is pretty much wiping her out.

It’s a new beginning.

Leave a comment

Filed under Food, New Beginning, personal, Writing

Time to Get Real – Week of November 4

weight-loss-3

Some weeks you get a pleasant surprise when you step onto the scale.

This past week just felt bad.  Can’t explain why, it just did.  So I was ready for more defeat when I stepped onto the scale.

That’s one of the big hurdles on this journey.  Thinking myself into failure.  My exercise wasn’t great but I was journaling the food diligently and staying in the zone the whole time.  But in my head I was having a bad week.  That’s a constant battle for me.  And, I imagine, for lots of others on this same journey.  In the end, doing what I need to do made the difference.  Not giving into the voice inside my head that wants me to fail.

The other interesting note is that I ate my full daily allotment of calories most of these days.  The downside of the “gamification” of this process that I’ve talked about before is the urge to “score” as many points as possible.  In this case by eating as few calories as possible.  What we know is that below a certain level that actually hurts the process.  It’s one reason why my weekly weight loss goal is only 1-2 pounds a week.  Slow and steady, never letting my body go into rebellion mode i.e. starvation mode.

So that next milestone creeps a little closer.

My resolution remains :

I want to am going to be The Guy again.

The next milestone is getting back below 190.  I will get there and go on.

Official Weigh In Weight

193.2 pounds

Weight Change this week – -1.6 pounds

Total Weight Loss To Date – 11.6 pounds

Goal Weight and Total to Lose – 175/30

Leave a comment

Filed under personal, Weight Loss

A New Beginning – October 30

einstein_www-txt2pic-com

“My candle burns at both ends,

It will not last the night,

But ah, my foes and oh, my friends,

It gives a lovely light.”

-Edna St. Vincent Millay

It has been almost six months since we moved to RVA.  In that time we have gone a little crazy with all the options of places to go and things to do.  It’s finally caught up with us.  This week we looked at each other and said “Please, let’s keep this weekend clear”.  We are pooped.  Moving from a largely rural county where most of the interesting things to do are at least an hour away to a place where there is something going on EVERY WEEKEND (and often on weekdays too) with none of it is more than a half an hour away is mind boggling.  Even more amazing is that we haven’t been able to do everything.  Last weekend we chose to hit the Powhatan Festival of the Grape (which was great fun) and missed the local Celtic Festival.

In the end we have to take a little time off to re-charge our batteries.

  • 154 days without a (proven)rude Virginian.
  • Temperatures yesterday were in the 80s.  It occurred to us that local kids don’t have to figure out how to design a Halloween costume that can fit over a snow suit or heavy jacket.
  • Don’t want to short the Powhatan festival.  It was much larger than we expected.  We ended up skipping about 6 wineries because we just ran out of gas.  Plenty of the festival food we have come to expect, plus some cool shopping.  The Kid picked up a cool hat, I almost bought one as well.

It’s a new beginning.

Leave a comment

Filed under Food, New Beginning, personal