SFC Finale!

My goals + how I did:

1.  Save $750. ($952.56/$750)

Check, check, check.  Feels like I haven’t done well financially lately, but I have been contributing to my 401(k), which helped with this goal, but has me trying to find a balance that will allow me to play now AND later.

2.  Write two short stories. (0/2)

Eek.  Not so much. 

3.  Outline my novel.

Again, not so much.  I have two ideas I’m playing with right now.  One has a rough outline and one is very green and neither are where I’d like them to be right now.

4.  Take a class.

Check!  I took a ton of yoga classes this month and also went to a community class on bike maintenance.  Check out your local REI store, they offer at least weekly events.

5.  Run 231 miles. (236.5/231)

Yay!  Success!

6.  Bike 120 miles. (120.5/120)

Made it..barely!

7.  Learn to play a song on the guitar.

I did not do this 😦  However, I DID pick up my guitar and play with it for a bit this last weekend, which is pretty much more than I’ve done since I’ve had it.  I explored some tutorials on YouTube and realized I like – and want to play – complicated songs!  Contemplating a few more nights like that or actually taking lessons because this is still something I’d like to accomplish.

8.  Make a dress.

Nope.  I asked my mom to help me, but never got a pattern or fabric. 

9.  Volunteer four times. (6/4)

Yep!  I took care of this one early on, which is good because my volunteer opportunities have been waning for the summer.  I love working at festivals and there are pretty much none for the next few months.  I’m really glad I made this a goal and have made a conscious effort to stay involved.

10.  Get to 115. (119.4)

Ugh.  Not so much either, but I’m glad to be back in the teens (straddling really, it’s been back and forth).  I’m realizing how soon Vegas and the weddings are and it’s motivating me to keep it moving downward, although I don’t think I’m making this a goal for summer because I’m disappointed in my progress with it for the last two challenges.

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SFC11

My goals:

1.  Save $750. ($799.01/$750)
2.  Write two short stories. (0/2)
3.  Outline my novel.
4.  Take a class.
5.  Run 231 miles. (210/231)
6.  Bike 120 miles. (99/120)
7.  Learn to play a song on the guitar.
8.  Make a dress.
9.  Volunteer four times. (5/4)
10.  Get to 115. (122.4)

1.  What have you done this past week to help you achieve your goals?

I ran 13.5 miles and biked 15 miles.

I weighed in at 122.4.  Oh, hey, thattimeofthemonth, welcome.  Make yourself at home, asshole.

2.  What did you do this past week to make you feel good about yourself?

I cleaned up my house and baked today and feel like Martha-freaking-Stewart.  I spent so much time up until that running around from one thing to another, so it was nice to spend some time at home being homey.

3. With one week left, what is your plan?

Eek.  I’m not so happy with how my goals turned out this time around.  Okay, I wrote that and then realized I need to take responsibility for the fact that I didn’t work toward the goals as much as I wanted to when I started.  The workout and writing goals were most important to me, so I’m going to run and bike 21 miles (funny that I have equal amounts left for each) and write.  Like for real.  Maybe.

4.  What time of the day are you most productive?

Lately, the afternoon.  Both at work and then once I get home and on the weekends, I tend to waste the morning away and get down to business in the afternoon.

5. Fun Question:  Are you reading a book right now?  If so, share!  If not, what was the last good book you read?

I’m currently reading Boo Hiss and I really like it, though I didn’t read the first two of the series.  It’s just a fun, enticing summer read.  I’ve not kept up 100% with my one fic, one non-fic a month resolution I made, but I’ve been reading more this year and all great books too.  My two favorites have been Where Men Win Glory and 20 Times a Lady.

SFC10

My goals:

1.  Save $750. ($799.01/$750)
2.  Write two short stories. (0/2)
3.  Outline my novel.
4.  Take a class.
5.  Run 231 miles. (196.5/231)
6.  Bike 120 miles. (84/120)
7.  Learn to play a song on the guitar.
8.  Make a dress.
9.  Volunteer four times. (5/4)
10.  Get to 115. (119.4)

1.  What have you done this past week to help you achieve your goals?

I contributed (without thinking about it) $103.55 to my 401(k) and added $120 to my e-fund, bringing my savings over my $750 goal!  Check one off!

I took three yoga classes, something I’ve never really liked, but I’m enjoying it.  Check another one off!

I ran 27.5 miles and biked 8 miles.

I weighed in at 119.4.

2.  What did you do this past week to make you feel good about yourself?

I did what I wanted when I wanted and didn’t do what I didn’t want to do.  It was awesome.  I felt very free and empowered in making last week exactly what I wanted it to be.

3.  With two full weeks left in the challenge, what goals are you making your priority?

Holy shit!  I can’t believe that’s all there is!  Eek.  Some of my goals I have completely abandoned.  If, in the next two weeks I’m able to keep up with my running, biking and eating smart to lose weight and get on top of my writing goals, I’d end the challenge satisfied. 

4. Summer is just around the corner, which season do you find the easiest to accomplish goals?

Summer’s here in AZ!  It’s been really warm lately and I’m in summer mode.  Some of my “I did what I want” week was because I guess it’s ingrained from childhood for me that summer is for fun and the long days make me want to do more and switch things up.  That’s fun and being more adventurous and spontaneous is an ongoing goal of mine, but a carpe diem kind of life does tend to make it harder to stick to other goals.  I’d say it’s easiest for me in winter, there’s not too much going on and after January 1, I’m pretty focused on changing some things for the better.

5. Fun Question: What do you miss most about being a kid?

Right now I have to say summer vacation!  Would be nice to REALLY enjoy summer in all its glory.

Positive picture of the week:

I saw a license plate that read “PERSIST” this week and it made me remember what a wonderful word it is.  Persistance shows character and is always worth it!

SFC9

My goals:

1.  Save $750. ($575.46/$750)
2.  Write two short stories. (0/2)
3.  Outline my novel.
4.  Take a class.
5.  Run 231 miles. (169/231)
6.  Bike 120 miles. (76/120)
7.  Learn to play a song on the guitar.
8.  Make a dress.
9.  Volunteer four times. (5/4)
10.  Get to 115. (120.6)

1.  What have you done this past week to help you achieve your goals?

I ran 3o miles and biked two miles (just to the movie store, but it was nice to get back on).

I weighed in at 120.6 after a weekend of my mother feeding me every three hours and drinking to keep up with her and my sis.  I’ll take it!

I got an idea for a novel and started an outline, but I’m not ready to call it good yet. 

2.  What did you do this past week to make you feel good about yourself?

I ran.  Even though I felt a little bit down this week, I took time six out of the seven days to run and for that bit of time, I was happy and so proud of what my body (and my mind…because sometimes it’s mental) was doing for me.  My mind was clear and focusing on the positive!

3.  What is your ultimate fitness goal in life?

I definitely strive to reach athletic goals, like a triathlon and now I’m talking myself into a marathon, but mostly I just want to have a lifetime of wellness.  I want to be in shape so I can enjoy life (for a loooong time) and I want to be a good example to my kids.

4.  Do you have something you’d like to accomplish but think you can’t?

I’ve definitely had moments of doubt while in training for some of my races and currently I doubt my romantic ability and I think, like all women who really want kids, I’m scared that for some physical reason I won’t be able to get pregnant, BUT, I’ve kind of developed a stubborn/dedicated/optimistic personality in the past few years and at this point, really think I can do anything I put my mind to!  Ugh, so cliche and cheesy!

5.  Fun Question: Do you wear perfume/cologne? If so what kind?

No!  Back in high school I would get sick to my stomach from it, or from other people wearing it, so I never got in the habit, although I’ve considered trying to find something that doesn’t bother me.  I do get a lot of compliments about my scent, but I usually have to let them know it’s just from the impressive amount of hair product I use!

SFC8

My goals:

1.  Save $750. ($575.46/$750)
2.  Write two short stories. (0/2)
3.  Outline my novel.
4.  Take a class.
5.  Run 231 miles. (139/231)
6.  Bike 120 miles. (74/120)
7.  Learn to play a song on the guitar.
8.  Make a dress.
9.  Volunteer four times. (5/4)
10.  Get to 115. (121.4)

1.  What have you done this past week to help you achieve your goals?

I ran 31.5 miles.  It was a big week!

I weighed in at 121.4.  Frustrating after that big week of running and barely having an appetite.

I decided to cut myself a break and acknowledge that the reason I feel like my “savings” is not coming so easily is that in March I signed up for my company’s 401k (since now they match) and my take home has been hurting.  But the pre-tax money they invest for me still counts as savings, so I added the money that’s been taken out since the beginning of the challenge to my total, putting me at $575.46.  That makes me feel better!

2.  What did you do this past week to make you feel good about yourself?

Sometimes I consciously remind myself to make every week day about something other than work so I don’t get stuck in the wake up, go to work, eat, go to sleep, do it again rut.  This week I did okay with it.  Wednesday I think was the best and I left work a little early, went home and pulled off a long run and it felt great.  Then I sat on the patio and enjoyed the unexpected rain with a book and a well-earned beer.  Breaking up my routine makes me smile.

3.  How do you measure success of your goals?

I like to follow the whole SMART approach to goals, so I make sure they (usually) have specific requirements and being a part of this challenge puts a time limit on them as well. 

4.  What is failure to you when it comes to goals?

Not meeting them, although I feel okay if I at least tried.  Unfortunately some of them I haven’t even started! 

5.  Fun Question: If you could hop on a plane right now, where would you go?

I’ve been dreaming of Belize for a long time and I’m definitely feeling the call of the beach lately, so there!

SFC7

My goals:

1.  Save $750. ($200/$750)
2.  Write two short stories. (0/2)
3.  Outline my novel.
4.  Take a class.
5.  Run 231 miles. (107.5/231)
6.  Bike 120 miles. (74/120)
7.  Learn to play a song on the guitar.
8.  Make a dress.
9.  Volunteer four times. (5/4)
10.  Get to 115. (120.8)

1.  What have you done this past week to help you achieve your goals?

I ran 24.5 miles, which took me over 100, woohoo!

I weighed in at 120.8, up two from last week, but today I went grocery shopping today for my pre-planned meals for the week and they are going to be nutritious, low cal and delicious!

I transferred $50 to my bridesmaid fund.

I volunteered on Friday and Saturday.  Friday was fun; I went with my girls Meetup group to a social for developmentally disabled adults and helped with arts and crafts and then danced and encouraged the students to dance as well.  Saturday was sadly kind of a bust as it was the golf tournament I was super excited to help out at, but it was kind of unorganized, there wasn’t much to do and the older volunteers who have more of a tie to the charity were slightly unwelcoming and hesitant to accept help.  But, either way, that completes my first SFC goal!

2.  What did you do this past week to make you feel good about yourself?

I made peace with letting go of some of my friendships that have not been working, realizing that sometimes shitty friends deserve to be broken up with just as much as shitty boyfriends do, and pursued new friendships. 

I also took some time tonight to prepare those pre-planned meals for the week and clean up my house and I feel ready to start the week calmly instead of feeling like Monday snuck up and smacked me like I sometimes do!

3. When you go away on vacation or business do your goals get put on hold/pause or do you continue to work on them while away?

I’m going away for Memorial Day in two weeks and I already worked it into my training program, although, historically I’ve found it hard to stay on track.

4.  Do you have friends/family members that you work on a goal(s) with? Do you find working towards a goal with someone easier or more challenging?

I’m quite a lone wolf in this respect.  I can’t say I’ve ever worked toward a goal with someone, but I can definitely see that it might have benefits.  I am going to call on my mom’s help when I get around to making a dress since I’ve never even touched a sewing machine.

5. Fun Question: What is your favourite magazine to read?

I subscribe to Shape and Self and Oprah, but I caught up on Cosmo at the nail salon today and remembered just how much I love that!  It’s one I only read every now and then though because if I did read it every month I’d get sick of it!

SFC6

My goals:

1.  Save $750. ($150/$750)
2.  Write two short stories. (0/2)
3.  Outline my novel.
4.  Take a class.
5.  Run 231 miles. (83/231)
6.  Bike 120 miles. (74/120)
7.  Learn to play a song on the guitar.
8.  Make a dress.
9.  Volunteer four times. (3/4)
10.  Get to 115. (118.8)

1.  What have you done this past week to help you achieve your goals?

I ran 17.5 miles.

I weighed in at 118.8.  So far in the challenge, I’ve blamed my weight loss or gain on outside factors, but starting in May I have been making it more conscious thing, with good food choices, sensible portions and of course getting back to working out.  Even though throughout April I was all over the board, I consider 120 to be my starting weight, so I’m happy with the loss!

I volunteered on Saturday.  I’ve been getting a lot of really nice comments about my volunteering and I really do like it, but let me just say this time was totally selfishly motivated.  I volunteered at a triathlon to meet athletic men and get a sneak peek of a tri.  It was fun as all my volunteering gigs have been and I was happy to help out the athletes and the organizers.

2.  What did you do this past week to make you feel good about yourself?

Instead of picking something I normally do anyway – painting my nails or getting dolled up, which totally qualify and I totally did – I decided to make an effort to do something more and taking the first suggestion from this wonderful post of 100 Ways You Can Start Loving Yourself  Right Now, I made a list of things I love about myself. 

Among the gems:  I make people laugh, I’m a good driver and I’m photogenic.  Hey, it’s the little things.

I also took down her other suggestions that spoke to me and am going to make sure I do them all during my beautiful summer (sorry, I KNOW this is a spring thing, but we are breaking 100+ degrees and it looks like it’s staying that way until October now…but, on the bright side, I LOVE summer)!

Okay, I’m going to sneak one more in…in Gala Darling’s list, she included “evaluate your life and cut out the things that aren’t working” and I realized dating like a mad woman wasn’t fun and wasn’t working, so I cut that out!

3.  What goal are you having the most difficult time with? Do you have a plan to make it better?

There are quite a few – writing, guitar and dress – that I have put zero effort or even thought into.  I’ll put some time aside for them on my calendar, but then totally blow it off!  That usually works for me, but since it hasn’t, I might need a new plan, but I’m not sure what that is yet.

4.  What goal are you rocking? Do you plan on keeping up the momentum?

Volunteering!  I have one more event scheduled for next weekend, which will make it my first officially completed SFC goal.  I’ve definitely caught that bug, so I’m going to keep seeking out opportunities and participating in them.  I’m even looking for a recurring gig for consistency.

5.  Fun Question: What’s your favourite board game?

Love this question!  I am such a board game nerd and if I could stay at home on weekend nights playing them, I would pick that nine times out of ten but I have few friends who share my excitement.  My favorite is Scrabble.  I had a boyfriend a few years ago and we would literally have all-night Scrabbleathons, but I haven’t found anyone else willing to play with me since.  At first I resisted Words with Friends because I’m mad it made Scrabble “cool” when I thought it was ALWAYS cool, but I recently started playing, so at least I get my fix that way.

Love this picture and message!


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SFC5

My goals:

1.  Save $750. ($150/$750)
2.  Write two short stories. (0/2)
3.  Outline my novel.
4.  Take a class.
5.  Run 231 miles. (65.5/231)
6.  Bike 120 miles. (74/120)
7.  Learn to play a song on the guitar.
8.  Make a dress.
9.  Volunteer four times. (2/4)
10.  Get to 115. (118.4)

1.  What have you done this past week to help you achieve your goals?

I ran 4 miles (actually rested the knee) and biked 12 miles.

I volunteered on Saturday.  It was a Serve-Our-Schools day of service and I joined a group that was charged with painting murals in the gym.

I weighed in at 118.4.  (Not enough food yesterday + too much alcohol = puking guts out = weight loss).

2.  What did you do this past week to make you feel good about yourself?

Volunteering this week made me feel really good about myself.  I have no artistic ability, and as a quasi-perfectionist at first it was tough and frustrating, but when it started to come together, I was really happy and also realized it’s better than what these kids had and I hope they’re proud of their revamped gym!

3.  It’s May! What were your victories in April? Challenges?

I got off to a good start on a lot of my goals, but need to make more of an effort on the ones that are new to me and out of my comfort zone.

4.  Do you have any plans for the challenge in May?

Keep up with my running and biking.  Make more of an effort at weight loss.  My volunteer dates are all in May and I am going to write one of the short stories.

5.  Fun Question: What is your favourite type of ethnic cuisine?

Mexican!  I’m a nut for it.  I’ve spent most of my life in Arizona and Southern California, so it’s GOOD there and that’s probably why I love it!

SFC4

My goals:

1.  Save $750. ($150/$750)
2.  Write two short stories. (0/2)
3.  Outline my novel.
4.  Take a class.
5.  Run 231 miles. (61.5/231)
6.  Bike 120 miles. (62/120)
7.  Learn to play a song on the guitar.
8.  Make a dress.
9.  Volunteer four times. (1/4)
10.  Get to 115. (121.8)

1.  What have you done this past week to help you achieve your goals?

Because of an injury at my race last week, I took it easy on running, getting in 21.5 miles.  Okay so I tried to take it easy, I only skipped one day, so that’s actually kind of low-average for me.  I biked 32 miles, which helped me cross the halfway mark to my goal!

I put $100 toward my wanderlust fund.  It’s only at like 4% of my goal, but it’s a start!

I spent a morning looking for an opportunity to volunteer at a golf tournament and literally that afternoon got an email looking for volunteers at a golf tournament put on by an organization I’d helped out before.  I also signed up for another opportunity, so I think all of my four are in place now.

2.  What did you do this past week to make you feel good about yourself?

I cried over silly things, but that in itself didn’t make me feel good (obvs).  It was the fact that I let myself feel it and knew it would pass.  It did.

Fill in the blanks:

_Optimism_ comes naturally to me.

_Keeping a clean house_does not come naturally to me.

I wish _being outgoing_ came (at least a little more) naturally to me. 

Fun Question:  What is your favourite Easter candy? Are you allowing yourself some this year?

My favorite Easter candy is Reese’s eggs.  The second they came out in stores this season, the store I go to has been selling them 2/$1.  Very dangerous.  I bought (and ate) a lot.  I even put a note on my phone reminding myself I wasn’t eight years old and didn’t need checkout aisle candy every time I went to the store.  I’ve been looking for the fabled chocolate-covered Peeps though!  I think I might love them.  My mom always puts the good stuff in my basket – Reese’s, Twix, Crunch and Starburst jelly beans.  That was gone in just a few days!

SFC3

My goals:

1.  Save $750. ($50/$750)
2.  Write two short stories. (0/2)
3.  Outline my novel.
4.  Take a class.
5.  Run 231 miles. (41/231)
6.  Bike 120 miles. (30/120)
7.  Learn to play a song on the guitar.
8.  Make a dress.
9.  Volunteer four times. (1/4)
10.  Get to 115. (121.2)

1.  What have you done this past week to help you achieve your goals?

I ran 17.5 miles and biked 14 miles.

I got paid on Friday and apparently just LOVE having a slim checking account, because I moved $50 into my savings accounts for my weddings fund.  I find that to be the easiest way for me to save – taking out what I want to save at the beginning instead of just saving whatever’s left at the end.  Also, I said no to a trip I really wanted to go on over Memorial Day because I knew I couldn’t really afford it and it wouldn’t help me with my savings goals. 

I weighed in at 121, four pounds up from last week!  So THAT’s what happens when you eat Oreos all week.  And by all week I mean one box from Thursday to Saturday.

2.  What did you do this past week to make you feel good about yourself?

Um, I loved myself a lot this week.  I pushed through a hard workout instead of throwing in the towel and trying again after work.  I completely rocked another hard run instead of adding (easier and unprescribed) intervals.  

I went to a swanky happy hour with girlfriends.  I painted my nails (don’t be fooled, I do this twice a week, every week).  I wore my favorite heels twice and realized I’ve mastered ANOTHER woman skill – walking in heels effortlessly. 

I completed my third race on Saturday two minutes under my goal. My mom took me to get pedis after!  That night I was ready for bed at 10, but then I remembered I’m still just 26, rallied and went out at 11 for a drink and people-watching with some friends – in heels, feeling sexy!

On Sunday (I guess this was another reward), I said fuck it and laid in bed and finished a dirty, dirty chick lit book.  Then I lazed by the pool.

I took a break from online dating because I wasn’t feeling it and also took a break from social media in general.

3.  Are your SFC goals your ultimate goals or steps to your ultimate goals?  Do you find it easier to set big goals or do you like making mini-goals?

Most of my SFCs are mini-goals to keep me on pace for my 2011 goals.  A few others are just one-off things I want to do!  I like making big goals and then figuring out how to make them happen through little goals. Plus, since I love crossing things off my lists, mini-goals help me stay on track because I feel productive! 

4.  What are some of your ultimate goals, things on your bucket list?

Writing a novel, owning a home, international travel, having a family.  I actually haven’t thought too BIG recently, I need to start dreaming big again!

5.  Fun Question: If you could achieve only one more thing in your life, what would it be?

I totally ripped this question from eHarmony (thrilled Amy used my Qs this week!) and when guys pick it, I give an answer that probably makes them shit their pants, but best to be honest, right?  If I could achieve one more thing, I would want a happy, healthy family.  My parents were/are great and I’ve always wanted to be just as great a mom to little ones of my own as my mom was to me.  There are of course lots of things, but if I had to pick, I’d pick that.

Positive picture for the week:

 
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