grim23: (Responsive)
Alertness and courage are life's shield. - - PHILIPPINE PROVERB


Goals Completed: 2
Goals in Progress: 30

I'm spending an hour or two regrouping and planning, my first chance this month.  *smile*

Since my last update, I've run a very easy 5K to support a friend with some very serious medical issues, and encouraged her to work on her health and lifestyle choices - hopefully with some sustained success. I'm still training in the gym, and starting to prepare for the Spartan race. I enjoyed training Tai Chi last week, and I'm looking forward to tomorrow's classes. I plan to look at hard-style classes this week.

I've started the process to prepare for a Puja in May, and started the daily meditation process. Almost at random, little cluttered messes have been clearing themselves out daily as part of the ritual. I slipped up with my mindful eating this week, but I've restarted my focus on caloric intake and eating less overall. However, I accidentally got enough sleep for the week. *laughs*

I'm scheduled for 18 CEUs at my usual mental health and addictions conference in July, a good start on the year. I've also just completed a tactical course last night, the first of a series designed to improve my ability to respond more effectively to chaos and Zombies. I'm planning on finishing up my annual required firefighter training tomorrow, and getting started on my taskbook for my Firefighter I certification.

April looks to be a busy and productive spiritual month!
grim23: (Responsive)
Guard your honor. Let your reputation fall where it will. And outlive the bastards. - Lois McMaster Bujold
grim23: (Responsive)
“The path of the warrior is lifelong, and that mastery is often simply staying on the path.” ― Richard Strozzi-Heckler
grim23: (Responsive)
Great men are rarely isolated mountain peaks; they are the summits of ranges. - T.W. Higginson


Goals Completed: 2
Goals in Progress: 26

Although I didn't end up running in the 5K (my running partner had eye surgery and was prohibited from running), I'll be running in another 5K this weekend. I'm still running (and hiking) some hills and inclines, and I'll be hitting the gym treadmill hard this week. NO Tai Chi or hard-style martial arts progress - I had a visitor from the UK that took away from my training, and the timing hasn't worked out.

I will still be participating in a Puja the beginning of May, that will necessitate daily meditation for at least a month, although my role in the Puja isn't very clear as of yet. I'm still continuing mindful eating, and I'll be adding to the mindfulness component soon. I'm still scheduled to get my biannual BPLS training at the Red Cross Disaster Academy in May, and that will also help with my Zombie Preparations. Clearing out Ol' Number 3 even more, setting up an altar to Ganesha, and organizing and updating some of the gear onboard, has also unofficially helped.

Also, for some travel/adventure, I went to the Pittock Mansion and learned quite a bit about early Portland History, hiked Oneonta Gorge Falls/Starvation Creek, scored another Junior Ranger badge, and completed a geocaching challenge not on my 101/1001 list.

Not bad for 10 days!
grim23: (Responsive)
If we did all the things we are capable of, we would literally astound ourselves. - Thomas Edison


Goals Completed: 2
Goals in Progress: 24

Now that we're back from vacation, and I've had a brief chance to decompress - it's time to get serious about where I'm at with my goals and life. I'm running a 5k this Sunday, and I've been doing some treadmill work with inclines and rolling hills and different speeds to prepare for it. I'm also working on pushups and situps because I've been deferring strength training for the 5K. I've not been able to train Tai Chi, and different priorities have kept me so far from finding a hard-style art.

I will be participating in a Puja the beginning of May, that will necessitate daily meditation for at least a month. While I was in Hawai'i I was able to participate in a Tibetan Chant in a hundred-year old Tibetan Temple, and I was able to also attend a Portland Full-Moon zazen guided meditation this last Sunday. Now that I've found a good fit for a Zendo, I've been keeping up with more regular meditation - a very necessary practice.

I was able to maintain mindful eating, and a mildly restrictive diet based on my level of exercise - despite a large amount of spam(!) but I've not been so fortunate with sleeping patterns. Although I definitely got more sleep in Hawai'i, I didn't regularly meet even seven hours of sleep. I was able to finish another book in my permanent library on the plane on the way home, amd I've written my hiaku (below).

I've not been able to get to the fire station to train as of yet since I've gotten back, or work on any Zombie Preparations. Ol' Number 3 has, however, gotten some clearing in her hallway, and my altar has been set up in preparation for the Puja.

My Travel/Adventure goals have made the most progress. I've been to the Pacific Tsunami Museum, enjoyed Taiko Drumming, hung three new Junior Ranger badges on my banner, visited another lighthouse, geocached in a new state, gone on a couple of dayhikes, snorkeled, and hiked a non-so-extinct volcano. Not bad for a twelve-day vacation!

Eleven warm days -
exploring, learning, and spam
What a vacation!

swimming with turtles,
hiking active volcanoes
tired and happy

old Buddhist Temple
painted Tibetan sounds
aging gracefully
grim23: (Responsive)
The greatest thing is, at any moment, to be willing to give up who we are in order to become all that we can become. - Max Depree

Goals Completed: 2
Goals in Progress: 22

I completed another goal on my list, by hiking Kīlauea Iki today https://www.nps.gov/havo/planyourvisit/hike_day_kilaueaiki.htm and Pu‘u Huluhulu two days ago https://www.nps.gov/havo/planyourvisit/hike_day_puuhuluhulu.htm - as well as finding multiple Earthcaches at Volcanoes National Park.

Incredible scenery and learning!
grim23: (The Real Me)
What is it going to be - reasons or results? - Art Turock


Goals Completed: 1
Goals in Progress: 22

I've been very lucky to be able to get to take a vacation on the Big Island of Hawaii, and I've worked hard on a lot of goals and lifestyle training while still having amazing adventures. I've ran or hiked every single day (sometimes both), and bumped up both my pushups and situps count. I have a 2.5 mile path, and I've seen wild boar, mongoose, and lots of birds while running or walking. We plan to sit zazen at a Buddhist temple we'll be staying at for two days.

Today we spent three hours snorkeling at the Kapaho Tide Pools, completing my first goal on my current list. *smile* We've also visited the Pacific Tsunami Museum, went to a historic theater to hear Taiko Drumming with Sensei Marco Lienhard, world-famous for his excellence with the Shakuhachi (Japanese bamboo flute), earned two Junior Ranger badges, swam with a sea turtle, walked on beaches and lava rocks, and found a lot of geocaches, especially Earthcaches. Although I've already hiked an extinct volcano (Pu'u Huluhulu), we are going back to Volcanoes National Park tomorrow to hike the Halema‘uma‘u Crater.

I've eaten really well, and mindfully. I've eaten a lot of fried spam, and two Super Locos (consisting of white rice, topped with a hamburger patty, spam, sausages, a fried egg, and brown gravy). Even so, I've been under budget (as recorded by my fitbit activity and calorie counter), despite the wonderful food cooked by our hosts. I'm about to eat some great fried rice ... with spam. *laugh*

I note that Portland has had snow and rain, and lots of extreme weather. Although we've had a bit of rain, it's been a warm rain, with averages of 70s for temperature. I'm very grateful for the opportunity to recharge my batteries.
grim23: (Grim)
Once you say you're going to settle for second, that's what happens in life, I find. - John F. Kennedy


To answer a recent question: (from the USCCA)

1. Adopt the mindset that evil can strike anytime, anywhere — and be prepared by always paying attention to your surroundings. (Situational awareness)
2. Don't go somewhere with a weapon that you wouldn't go without it. After all, it's better to avoid a fight than to win one. (Conflict avoidance)
3. Only engage a threat if you absolutely have no other choice. (Threat de-escalation)
4. Only utilize a weapon if you fear death or grave bodily harm as a result of a conflict you didn't start and couldn't escape from and in which no lesser force is sufficient to stop the threat. (Rules governing the justifiable use of deadly force)
grim23: (Responsive)
The truth of the matter is that you always know the right thing to do. The hard part is doing it. - H. Norman Schwarzkopf


Goals Completed: 0
Goals in Progress: 19

I'm still recovering from whatever virus I contracted, so physically I've not been making the strength gains I'd wanted. I am still training and hitting the gym, but lighter workouts and more of a focus on cardio work, as I've got a few 5Ks scheduled in the next month. I have gotten to be a research participant for a biomechanical running lab, one of the labs that performs the testing shoes for Runner's World, and I've already ran on a treadmill with sensors attached in different places once. According to them, I have good running form, but I could run more efficiently with a faster tempo and shorter strides - so I'm training that way now.

I'm still practicing mindful eating, but I overate three times last week, so I'm not counting the completed week as mindful. I'm doing better since then. I'm usually meeting my hydration goals, but I was struggling to meet my activity goals due to illness. I'm working on getting better sleep. I did find a Zen Temple and I've made up the formal Zazen practices to the current month, and I've finished the second book in my permanent library and started the third.

There's been no progress on maintenance tasks. I've made some progress with disaster preparation; I've researched tactical courses, and sorted and purged the under-the-bed storage for Ol' Number 3. I've also completed the Defensive Driving, Infection Control, and HIPPA courses for my annual firefighter training. I've still got CPR/BPLS to complete, and then I'll keep working on the taskbook after that.

I will be going to Hawaii with Faye at the end of the month for almost two weeks, so I'll hope to get a few adventure goals completed. I'm still doing my research on what I want to do, but I'll update my list when I have a plan.
grim23: (Responsive)
One cannot manage too many affairs: like pumpkins in the water, one pops up while you try to hold down the other. - Chinese Proverb


Goals Completed: 0
Goals in Progress: 18

I'm still focusing on being more mindful of my eating and water intake habits, and I find that with that focus, I generally eat less than 2k calories a day and drink at least 72 ounces of water a day. However, my colonoscopy and a pretty serious viral infection drastically impacted my baseline and has temporarily taken me out of the gym. My colon, for those who care, is in great shape - and I'm mostly recovered from the virus, although I'm still coughing a bit. I'll be back to training next week

I've found a couple of Temples to sit Zazen, but my health issues have kept me from them. I'm slowly reading from my permanent library, and I've gotten some new books. It will be very important very soon for me to reestablish a meditative practice as I will very likely be engaging in a Puja in the Spring. There's been no other maintenance and only mild Zombie Preparation with continuing improvement with organization and storage on the bus. I did get to see the Chinese New Year Lion Dance at the Lan Su Chinese Garden with Faye this year, and I also spent a day hiking at Elowah Falls, despite snow making much of the trail almost impassable. I'll go back in the Spring.

It looks like I'll be going to Hawaii for a vacation! I'll be gone for about a week or so near the end of February. More details when I have them.

February haiku:

After five decades
bowel prep and procedure
Good for ten years!

Colonoscopy,
Coughing painful infection:
Not my healthy week!

Year of The Rooster
Three Lions, dancing as art
Red ribbon wishes
grim23: (Responsive)
Growth, in some curious way, I suspect, depends on being always in motion just a little bit, one way or another. - Norman Mailer


Goals Completed: 0
Goals in Progress: 15

I've been focusing on being more mindful of my eating and water intake habits lately, and I'm striving for this week to eat less than 2k calories a day and drink at least 72 ounces of water a day. Additionally, I'm striving to get at least 10k of steps for at least 5 days this week, and get three strength workouts in the gym. So far, I've had one strength workout and one day for steps this week (Sunday), with mild gains for my bench press.

Despite the above being about movement, I'll need a bit of a balance. *smile* I'm still looking at Zazen and meditative practices. I will be getting a colonoscopy this week, because I have turned 50, and that'll be a day of very little movement. Although this isn't on my 101/1001 list, it is a maintenance task. *grin* I've made no real progress on my preparations for Zombies, but I'm reorganizing my living space on Ol' Number 3 to be effective. There's also some probability of travel plans this Winter, but I'm still waiting on dates and times.
grim23: (Responsive)
You will never reach your destination if you stop and throw stones at every dog that barks. - Winston Churchill


Goals Completed: 0
Goals in Progress: 14

It's been almost a month since my new 101/1001 list started, and an update is more than due. *smile*

I've been in the gym quite a bit this month; my current pushup and situp count is showing some progress. I've added a small amount of weight to my bench press (sets of eight, not max). I've hit the treadmill a bit, as well, and I'm registered to run in two different 5K runs and the Spartan Race. I've used doubled classes, twice a day, of Tai Chi as my active recovery day twice so far. I'm still researching hard-style dojos near my work or Ol' Number 3.

As the winter season is curtailing being outside as much, I've begun re-reading my permanent library and enjoying my continuing practice of writing haiku. Formal Zazen is still being researched, but I expect to be engaging in a more formal meditative practice within the month. I've gotten a new laptop, and changed my passwords, and checked my credit report as the usual life maintenance stuff. I'm working on my Oregon Firefighter certification, and I've already started my mandatory yearly training, and I should be renewing my CPR/First Aid certification this month. I've gotten a soak in a hot springs, and I'm planning some travel for next month.

snow past my calves
deserted and white calm
only my tracks

five to six inches
cold white powder drifts
shuts down Portland

Good preparation
options for emeregencies
allows for snow days









grim23: (Responsive)
Unless we think of others and do something for them, we miss one of the greatest sources of happiness. - Ray Lyman Wilbur
grim23: (Responsive)
When I hear somebody sigh, 'Life is hard,' I am always tempted to ask, 'Compared to what? - Sydney J. Harris
grim23: (Responsive)
As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words, but to live by them.
- John F. Kennedy
grim23: (Responsive)
No man can think clearly when his fists are clenched. - George Jean Nathan
grim23: (Responsive)
"Strength does not come from winning. Your struggles develop your strengths. When you go through hardships and decide not to surrender, that is strength." - Arnold Schwarzenegger
grim23: (Responsive)
Goals are a means to an end, not the ultimate purpose of our lives. They are simply a tool to concentrate our focus and move us in a direction. The only reason we really pursue goals is to cause ourselves to expand and grow. Achieving goals by themselves will never make us happy in the long term; it's who you become, as you overcome the obstacles necessary to achieve your goals, that can give you the deepest and most long-lasting sense of fulfillment. - Anthony Robbins
grim23: (Responsive)
Today I was assigned to the backseat of Engine 481, and we went out on a call - but instead of responding to a fire or a natural or man-made disaster, I was blessed to be able to help deliver food baskets and presents for the children of disadvantaged families, for the second year in a row. That's a much better response call, and an awesome reason to roll fire apparatus. *smile*

Also yesterday, I got four hours of the last day of training for the year. I reflect on the progress I've made in my form and postures with both Tai Chi and Qi Gong - even with as sporadic of a training schedule as I had this year. I'll do my best to continue and improve my progress. 
grim23: (Responsive)
Late night heavy rain
patters down on asphalt
isolated calm

Overheard today:
I am One With the Force,
The Force is With Me.

grilled chicken, salad
no more hot dog and fries
training for Spartan!
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