I'm using this app called "Forest" on my iPhone and web browser. Basically it's an app to help you focus. You choose an amount of time between 10 minutes and 2 hours, in intervals of 5 minutes, and you plant a tree (a virtual tree, not a real tree. Although you can plant real trees with the app, but that's confusing to talk about right now, so pretend I didn't write this). As the minutes tick by, the tree grows, and provided you don't lose your focus before the time is up, you get a fully grown tree at the end. It's a bit different between the phone and the computer. On the phone, if you even leave the app, it will kill the tree, and you get an ugly, dead tree in your garden. This stops you from using the phone for anything. It's especially good when you sit down to eat with someone, as you can plant a tree and not be tempted to be checking twitter every 2 minutes, ignoring the person you're with. You can get around it by using Siri for some things, which is good as I can still use my phone to play music while this app is running.
The chrome extension works slightly differently. You set up all these web pages you want it to filter out (so facebook, twitter, reddit, youtube, etc), and if you try to go to these pages it will kill your tree. The desktop version isn't quite as powerful, as I can still use any other application on my Mac, but it stops me from dicking around online when I should be working (or writing a blog post).
The reason I bring this up now is because I set these apps for 30 minutes just a few minutes ago when I sat down to write. Unfortunately, I also took some pictures on my phone that I wanted to use in the blog post. I assumed these would sync with iCloud and be available to use from iPhoto right away, but of course, as is the rule with technology, nothing can ever work properly too many times in a row. So now, due to my tight schedule, I'll probably have to stay up 15 to 20 minutes late to get the pictures uploaded and the post up before bed. The things I do for my readers... (all 6 of you).
They aren't super riveting photos or anything, just some visual aids to go along with the topic of today's post. It's probably going to be short, sparse, and horribly incoherent, as I've only been writing for 13 minutes and am already losing steam. This is what happens when you get up at 4:30 in the morning, put in a 13 hour work day, then exercise. Why did I think I would be able to write a blog post after that? Oh well, this is what I get for not getting organized earlier. I could, I suppose, just continue in the vein of November and let this day stand empty. I've already started though, so why waste all this work?
I can already tell that there will be days this week though when nothing goes up. It's inevitable. I started my productivity changes and schedule planning right before I went back on shift, so there wasn't time to prepare a nice little backlog of posts that I can throw up whenever. The long days are already taking their toll, and there's only been one of them! It was a pretty ideal day too, with very few delays, so I'm worried if I do end up having wait time where I unload the oil, or having to do an extra load or something, it's going to really throw my schedule off. It won't be so bad on days that I don't have to work out, but still, if I'm not in bed by 9, it's going to be REALLY hard to get up at 4:30.
At least I won't have to make lunch in the mornings. I managed to get another 8 days of meals prepped out. Chilli and rice. It's simple, but it's delicious. My grandma made the chilli for me, so really all I did was make the rice. Still, like I said, I only just got back into the swing of things, I can't be throwing myself off the deep end right at the start. I think I'm going to need to start eating a bigger breakfast, or having a snack or two in the middle of the day, because even after I finished supper tonight I was 300 calories below my daily goal. And I'm on the aggressive "lose 2 pounds a week" plan, so being that far under probably isn't all that healthy. I'll have to eat a spoonful of peanut butter before bed I guess. Sigh. The sacrifices I make for health!
Ok, this post was supposed to be about exercising, and I'm 5 paragraphs in and haven't started yet. I have a really weird relationship with working out. I feel like I like it, but I can't be sure. I mean, I hate it when I'm doing it. Maybe? It feels good yet super tiring at the same time. Tonight it kind of felt like a waste of time, and I was really uncomfortable, but I'm pretty sure that's a side affect of not having done it for over a month. It will get better, and no matter what I always like the feeling after a workout. Right now I'm slightly sweaty, pretty hot, but content. I'm too tired to be terribly uncomfortable. Plus, my monkey brain knows that in the future, if I keep this up, it will produce results that are extremely desirous. Read: sick abs bruh.
I'm using an app right now called Stronglifts 5x5. It works really poorly, but it's not unusable. Mostly it's just little interface issues that just didn't have a lot of thought put into it. As far as I know it's made by just one guy who came up with the program, so I can't expect too much. Things do annoy me though, like today how I scaled back some of the weights from what they were at since I hadn't worked out in so long. I had to change the weights like three times, and if I left even the dedicated screen for that workout, staying in the app, it would still reset. There are a few other minor things that I can't even really come up with right now, but they bug me when I use it.
On the whole though, I find the app really useful. It's based on 5 simple exercises that workout your whole body. Day one is Squats, Overhead Press, and Deadlift, and day two is Squats, Bench Press, and Row. Notice that squats are on there twice, because (as I have learned) it is truly the king of exercises. Squats quickly became my favourite, as it just feels so good to do. I recently moved the bar to a lower position on my back, and while it's a bit harder on the shoulder blades, I like the results I'm getting. Plus I have a wimpy little pad to put on the bar, because I'm not tough enough yet to put up with the cold metal digging into my soft, fleshy back.
I've changed tactics in the workout attire department as well. I used to run shorts and a tank top, with either bare feet or vibram shoes. To be honest, the only reason I don't still run vibram shoes is because mine fell apart after so much loving, daily use and I haven't bothered to get replacements yet, because they aren't as abundant as they were 4 years ago. I wear converse now, which not only feel great on my feet, but they look super fly. They are high tops, flat bottoms, nice and minimal. My feet haven't really started to hurt yet so far. Other than that it's just a simple pair of black, loose jogging pants, a spandexy / silky shirt (I'm not sure what the material is called, but it's that typical work out shirt material). It's a Hello Internet FITOTRON5000 shirt, which I ordered from my all time favourite podcast, Hello Internet. Over that I wear a regular hoodie. I get a bit hotter while I workout now thanks to all this extra clothing, but I think that's a good thing. It makes me feel better, and I remember hearing something about sweating making you lose more weight. I'm not sure if it's true, but it can't hurt to try.
The best thing about the stronglifts app is that it requires only a few things. I have a squat rack, a barbell, a bench, and some weights. That's all you need for the core exercises. There's a bunch of other stuff you can add on, but really the three exercises each day mentioned above are the only thing you'll have to do to hit every muscle group in your body. Obviously if you want to look like The Rock, you'll have to get a little more technical, but hey, I'm a long ass way off of that for now!