“Grey Revelations?” – The Rabyd Skald – The Grey and The Wayfarer – Part 22

Happy Sif’s Day. 

The scattered Grey showers continue.  That said, I am getting more of a handle on them.  The triggers are pretty well known by now and I know how to deal with most of them. Mostly, I have been thinking, researching and meditating on what The Grey is?

I don’t know if I am right about this but The Grey seems to be more of a state between feeling nothing and being depressed.  If that makes any sense.  it is a protective state to keep me from feeling the sadness of depression but it still has the element of depression that is ‘loss of interest.  The other quality it has is that I do not give one shit about anyone else.  I am wondering if this is a counter safeguard my mind goes into when I have hit my psychological limit of not taking care of myself and being more concerned about others than myself. So The Grey puts me in a state where I am completely self-centered but not sad; but also restless and bored.  I hope I am wrong because that sounds like a state of mind I wouldn’t wish on even my enemies.  Dangerous and reckless.

I suppose the alternative is to be sad, tired and/or burning angry.

In other news:

  1. I am totally frustrated with the job hunt right now.  No one is even calling me and that is probably the product having lost so many contacts.  Every job I have gotten I have known someone and applying blind is difficult.  If the fuckers at my church hadn’t fired me, I might have had a connection there with someone else to get another job or at least I could put it on my resume as my last job.  It really puts a hole in my resume.  It might be Ok in another year or two but I don’t have a year or two.
  2. Love is frustrating as well.  I have identified that my wife and I have a trust-love but Miss Salty and I had a passion-love.  The problem is I want both. My INFJ idealism kicks in and says why can’t you have a high level of trust and passion in a love relationship. I was thinking about my series Rogue Wizard and there is the same theme. Lunette (passion) / Amber (trust).  It is all over the place with me and having only one or the other just makes it difficult for me inside my head.
  3. Writing seems to be the only solace I have these days. The Blog, my books in their raw form do provide some sense of stability in my head. The other thing is the weights, hiking and getting healthier. There is a part of me that just wants to dive into this and disappear.  My own world in my head is far superior to the real one.
  4. I am still adjusting my thoughts and emotions to my lack of any faith in any god.  I have no imaginary friend to talk to and that is liberating on the one hand but it means a level of self-reliance I have not experienced before and it is scary intoxicating.

I am not fond of the cards I am holding right now. I still am obligated to play the hell out of them though until the next shuffle.  Hopefuly that is soon.  I miss clear skies and having a strong hand.

I remain,

The Rabyd Skald – Wandering Soul, Bard, and Philosopher. The Grey Wayfarer.

Skaal!!!

 

“Getting Ripped” – A Skald’s Life – Self Virtues

Happy Frigg and Freya’s Day. 

Journal Entry:

Since my post last week in Self Virtues where I pointed out that I have had pretty good results as far as weight loss and my A1c, I have been meditating on how far I could take this.  How much fat can I lose and how ripped can I get.  I like this feeling to be sure, but it is also a matter of setting my sights on a goal I have never achieved – being ripped and leaned out as much as possible.  To look in the mirror and know that I have sculpted a work of art using nutrition, weights and walking.

I am still looking at my bucket list but I also want to set out a preliminary plan to engage from now until the end of March 2020 to do one thing – get ripped.

Discipline:

“Discipline is the willingness to be hard on oneself first and then if needed help with the development with others, so that greater purposes may be achieved.”

Principle: Apply discipline to every aspect of life that it can be applied.

Goal: To be following a full Paleo Diet by March 31, 2020.

Bucket List: Do a rebellious act on April 30th, 2020 – Beltane.

Nutrition is the lynchpin on this.  I need to truly get serious about the paleo diet and be doing ti as completely as possible. If I can do it from now until the end of the holidays in December, I will have taken a big step in mastering nutrition.  Not that I won’t have cheat meals for the purpose of celebrating moments but the daily carb allowance needs to stop altogether.

My bucket list item will mean all the more to me if I am in great shape.  No change to it, just a heightened sense of anticipation.

Perseverance:

“Perseverance is the ability to stand up and return from defeat and failure”

Principle: Keep getting up after every defeat or failure.

Goal: To engage in an exercise program that involves weightlifting, hiking/walking, and stretching/ yoga an average of three days a week from April 1st, 2019 to March 31st, 2020

Bucket List: To get at least one tattoo by March 18th, 2020.

One of the things I said a long time ago is that the reason I want fit body is so the tattoos I want to get will be on a canvas worthy of art.

I need to make sure my routine is more scientific in the sense it has an exercise that hits every single muscle in the split and truly helps both metabolism-boosting and the look.  Stronger happens just by weight lifting.  what I need is to make sure I am sculpting my body, not just doing whatever.

Fidelity:

“Fidelity is the will to be loyal to one’s Gods and Goddesses, to one’s Folk, to one’s self, and loyalty to one’s friends was as valued as highly as loyalty to one’s family.”

Principle: Be loyal to those who have been loyal to me.

GoalCelebrate my wife and I’s 30th anniversary (June 10th, 2019) with a mini-vacation (achieved)

Bucket List: Discover all the countries of origin from my genetics and visit them all by March 18th, 2029.

Health is the main objective here.  I only have one life and I want to live it as long as possible and with the highest quality of health possible.  The person ultimately responsible for that is me.  I do want to visit all the countries of my ancestors and I want to do that standing up and strong.

Higher Virtue – Wisdom:

Of course, there is more to sculpting yourself than just your body. Sculpting your mind and heart is good too. It has amazed me how my dwelling in the land of fitness has crossed over with wisdom for other areas of my life.  Mostly the need to lean out from things I no longer need that just weigh down my life and are not healthy for me to have. Then building strength in places I do need.  It seems to carry over to all of life really.

Rest Day Routine: 

  1. Morning Routine
  2. Wife: Communication / Cuddle Time
  3. Blogging – Organize, revise, write a new post for the next day, 15 min. work on fiction.
  4. Cleaning – varies but one room of the apartment at least.
  5. Reading – half an hour for enjoyment.
  6. Writing – 1 hour

I added writing and took away walking.  It is getting cold, so in November my walking will be a half-hour during my workout instead.

Goals and Bucket List Items Achieved (Since Summer 2018):

Goals Achieved: 4

  1. Graduated College with a BS in Political Science and minors in Economics and International Business – December 2018
  2. Finalize last requirements for my degree – Internship by May 2019 – May 2019
  3. Celebrate my wife and I’s 30th anniversary (June 10th, 2019) with a mini-vacation – June 2019
  4. Maintain a daily blog streak of one post per day for an entire year (365 days).

Bucket List Items Achieved: 0

I remain,

The Rabyd Skald – Wandering Soul, Bard, and Philosopher. The Grey Wayfarer.

Skaal!!!

“A Writer’s Bucket List” – A Skald’s Life – Foundational Virtues

Happy Mani’s Day

Journal Entry:

Well, I have reached the week where I look at my bucket list but I have also added the additional task of redoing my Routines.  Mostly though my decision to be a writer first and whatever else to pay the bills means some changes to both.  I have to develop two habits to do that 1) writing (on top fo the blog consistently every day) and 2) Reading.  I need to work that in right now and have some goals or bucket list items attached to them.

My bucket list is really about long term goals and having those mile markers on the journey where I can say – ‘hey. life is good’.  There are a couple bucket list items that looking at them may not be completely of this vein so I am thinking of changing them and they should reflect in some way the virtue I have attached them to as well.  it has been a year for many of them so it is time for a look again because what motivates me and inspires me has probably changed.

Routine changes are more about finding what practically works.  My morning routine works but my formal meditation time need some attention. The work and rest Day routines simply need to be ordered so the reading and writing get done every single day.

Honor:

Honor is the feeling of inner value and worth from which one knows that one is noble of being, and the desire to show respect for this quality when it is found in the world”

Principle – To possess a feeling of inner value about myself and my future with a desire to find the same in others.

Goal: Maintain a daily blog streak of one post per day for an entire year (365 days).  (achieved)

Bucket List: Hike the Northern Lakeshore Trail along the Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan by March 2024.

I still want to do this.  I do have as kind fo a side identity being a hiker and wayfarer in real life.  I want to see this as my first big hike. It stays.

Courage:

“Courage is the bravery to do what is right always.”

Principle – Act with Courage at the right time.

Goal: Cross one thing off bucket list every year. Deadline March 31st.

Bucket List: Go Back to Budapest, Hungary for a vacation by March 2029.

I still want to do this.  One of my other ones is to visit the lands of my ancestors and I don’t think anyone has ever mentioned Hungarian ancestry, but I still love the city of Budapest.

Truth:

“Truth is the willingness, to be honest, and to say what one knows to be true and right. It is often better to not say anything at all if one cannot be honest.”

Principle – To Be Honest, and Speak Truth to Myself and Others.  To Be Silent in the presence of Fools.

Goal: To Write a Non-Fiction Book by March 31st, 2020

Bucket List: Read 52 books (one per week) in the year 2020.

This bucket list item has been learning Latin but I have just not been able to inspire myself to learn it. More fitting with a writer and a desire for a long term goal about reading specifically, I want to read 52 books a year and that comes out to one per week. I decided the calendar year would be more appropriate for this one andI will probably use Goodreads for this for accountability.  I am going to however work this one in as soon as possible into the routine so once 2020 starts I will have developed the habit a bit.

Higher Virtue: Love:

I still struggle with this tension of being a natural care for others kind fo guy but neglecting myself at times. There are certain issues in my heart and head because of it. I have been meditating on this issue a lot but few things come into focus. its the age-old issue of self-love and care not getting done but me working hard to make others happy.

Morning Routine:

  1. Stretching / Yoga
  2. Shower, Personal Hygiene. Morning Meds.
  3. Review Nine Noble Virtues (NNV), Principles, Goals and Bucket List
  4. Meditation – 5 min.
  5. Check Communications and Email.
  6. Paper Journal: Create a Daily Log and To-Do List.
  7. Get Dressed for the Day

I find the biggest obstacle to formal meditation is I am not awake enough to concentrate on it and I feel a little grungy too.  I figure doing my stretching and getting a shower will do that.  I also have split my medications and supplements into two things so the don’t upset my stomach as much.  My payday is coming up and I want to order some candles and I found a company that produces valknut plaques of a sort for meditation. Time to get this meditation time truly formal as it helps me far too much to not do it or be hit and miss anymore.

I remain.

The Rabyd Skald – Wandering Soul, Bard, and Philosopher. The Grey Wayfarer.

Skaal!!!

“Nutrition and Weightlifting Notes” – A Skald’s Life – Self Virtues

Happy Frigg and Freya’s Day. 

Journal Entry:

I do love that feeling.  It is interesting that life is much easier when you are physically strong. There is no doubt about that. I was moving some boxes the other day at work and to me it was pretty easy, then one of my coworkers tried to do some of them and damn near gave themselves a hernia. I realized it is not that they were so weak, but the boxes were much lighter to me than them.

Another report I can make is that my weight has dropped another six pounds to 274 lbs. (124 kg – for the rest of the world) this month.  I started this particular leg of the journey two years ago at 348 lbs. (158 kg) so that’s a drop of 74 lbs (34 kg) total.  I love metric but this sounds so much more impressive in Imperial.  I still have a little bit of fat to lose, and loose skin to tighten, so we continue. The goal, after all, is to look good naked. My frame being 6’4″, things are starting to get good in clothes.  you kind of get that when you catch women looking at your ass.

The other good thing is my A1c number being at 5.7.  Normal is 4.1 to 5.6 and given I started at 8.4 three years ago, things are going in the right direction.  My goal is to be in the normal range next appointment which is in March. Diabetes is losing; so that is good.

I wish I could say there was some special trick but it basically has been three factors in priority order:

  1. Nutrition – Paleo Diet and making it more refined every month.
  2. Weightlifting – Bodybuilding style pushing the last set to failure.
  3. Walking/Hiking

I do need to make some adjustments because I want to see how leaned out I can get.  See below.

Discipline:

“Discipline is the willingness to be hard on oneself first and then if needed help with the development with others, so that greater purposes may be achieved.”

Principle: Apply discipline to every aspect of life that it can be applied.

Goal: To be following a full Paleo Diet by March 31, 2020.

Bucket List: Do a rebellious act on April 30th, 2020 – Beltane.

I have eliminated bread for the most part.  Most of the carbs that are left are from cheat meals twice a week and my two carb a day allowance.  The next thing to go will be the allowance completely and that is going to require some study this next month or so. Making truly paleo meals is the next goal, so the holidays will be easier when I have to be social and I am not dieting in those moments.  After new year, the goal will be to be true paleo except for cheat meals. That is the key to diet, being able to occasionally have what you want to eat, but the rest of the time be tight.

Perseverance:

“Perseverance is the ability to stand up and return from defeat and failure”

Principle: Keep getting up after every defeat or failure.

Goal: To engage in an exercise program that involves weightlifting, hiking/walking, and stretching/ yoga an average of three days a week from April 1st, 2019 to March 31st, 2020

Bucket List: To get at least one tattoo by March 18th, 2020.

Up til now I have been going in and doing what comes naturally which is pretty new to me as I usually have a logbook to fill out with each set and rep, but this has been good in that I have not done anything overly stressing on my joints. But I need to get back to the scientific approach to make sure every muscle and muscle group is getting worked efficiently.  Barbells have returned but need to be more utilized with a more balanced approach as far as the type of equipment too.  Time for a little more planning before each workout.

It’s getting colder so hiking training is going to move indoors to the days I work out at the gym. One half-hour of walking on the treadmill with a weight vest might be a good winter alternative.

Fidelity:

“Fidelity is the will to be loyal to one’s Gods and Goddesses, to one’s Folk, to one’s self, and loyalty to one’s friends was as valued as highly as loyalty to one’s family.”

Principle: Be loyal to those who have been loyal to me.

Goal: Celebrate my wife and I’s 30th anniversary (June 10th, 2019) with a mini-vacation (achieved)

Bucket List: Discover all the countries of origin from my genetics and visit them all by March 18th, 2029.

Goal Achieved

Higher Virtue – Wisdom:

A long life with high quality is the goal here.  I have lived 50 years and I would like 50 more and the worst I ever want to be is maybe having to use as staff like Gandalf the Grey at 100. Being wise in these things means engaging overall health.  Nutrition is the most important thing but I think my exercise forms are both long term in their focus as well.

Rest Day Routine: 

  1. Morning Routine
  2. Wife: Communication / Cuddle Time
  3. Blogging – Organize, revise, write a new post for the next day, 15 min. work on fiction.
  4. Walking – 1 hour.
  5. Cleaning – varies but one room of the apartment at least.
  6. Reading – half an hour for enjoyment.

Goals and Bucket List Items Achieved (Since Summer 2018):

Goals Achieved: 4

  1. Graduated College with a BS in Political Science and minors in Economics and International Business – December 2018
  2. Finalize last requirements for my degree – Internship by May 2019 – May 2019
  3. Celebrate my wife and I’s 30th anniversary (June 10th, 2019) with a mini-vacation – June 2019
  4. Maintain a daily blog streak of one post per day for an entire year (365 days).

Bucket List Items Achieved: 0

I remain,

The Rabyd Skald – Wandering Soul, Bard, and Philosopher. The Grey Wayfarer.

Skaal!!!

“Kicking the Bucket” – A Skald’s Life – Foundational Virtues

Happy Mani’s Day

Journal Entry:

This week I consider my bucket list. You know that list of things you want to do before you kick the bucket. This list is the major milestone I want to hit before my death and i think it is important to have long term goals and that is what they are.

People ask me without Christianity how do I have hope.  I ask them why they would assume that just because I don’t believe in the Chrisitan version of the afterlife any more that I wouldn’t have hope?  If you always looking to the beyond for your justification for living in hope now; I would say you are too heavenly minded that you’re no earthly good. Hope for me is not about life after but the life I have now.

As I deist I concede the atheists might be right and this is all I get. I also hope there is a life after death but I am not going to act as if that is guaranteed.  My bucket list is a reflection of the things that I want so that my life now is enjoyable and the purpose I create with them for my life is my own creation. I find a lot of hope in this.

Honor:

Honor is the feeling of inner value and worth from which one knows that one is noble of being, and the desire to show respect for this quality when it is found in the world”

Principle – To possess a feeling of inner value about myself and my future with a desire to find the same in others.

Goal: Maintain a daily blog streak of one post per day for an entire year (365 days).

Bucket List: Hike the Northern Lakeshore Trail along the Pictured Rocks National Lakeshore in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan by March 2024.

This is the beginning of my hike bucket list as the first goal.  If my ultimate goal as an old person is to hike the triple crown this is a good training hike to prepare for the idea of how to do something long term.

Courage:

“Courage is the bravery to do what is right always.”

Principle – Act with Courage at the right time.

Goal: Cross one thing off bucket list every year. Deadline March 31st.

Bucket List: Go Back to Budapest, Hungary for a vacation by March 2029.

This is a desire to visit a city I have seen for a few days once again and view all of its places. I loved this town as it did not feel like a city to me.  More of an experience.  I want to experience it again but this time for a couple weeks and enjoy it.

Truth:

“Truth is the willingness, to be honest, and to say what one knows to be true and right. It is often better to not say anything at all if one cannot be honest.”

Principle – To Be Honest, and Speak Truth to Myself and Others.  To Be Silent in the presence of Fools.

Goal: To Write a Non-Fiction Book by March 31st, 2020

Bucket List: Learn Latin by March 31st, 2021 to the point I can take a test and show my self proficient.

A short term bucket list Item and one I am considering changing.  Don’t get me wrong Latin is an awesome language to learn but I am thinking that if I am going to learn a language every couple of years, languages that are actually spoken now might be more beneficial and then learn Latin at a later date.

Higher Virtue: Love:

I am very focused on the fulcrum of self-love right now. my understanding that this is what makes all my other loves possible and stronger is the motivation.  Mostly though I need to start focusing on my goals and bucket list because this is my life and I need to start living it and loving it.

Morning Routine:

  1. Review Nine Noble Virtues (NNV), Principles, Goals and Bucket List
  2. Meditation – 3 min.
  3. Check Communications and Email.
  4. Paper Journal: Create a Daily Log and To-Do List.
  5. Stretching / Yoga
  6. Shower and Personal Hygiene
  7. Get Dressed for the Day

This part got shorter.  I don’t do breakfast and people freak out about it, but you know I have found that eating from what most people would consider 11am to 7pm is sufficient for me and intermittent fasting has proven, when coupled with my Paleo Diet, to improve my fat loss and weight management.

I remain.

The Rabyd Skald – Wandering Soul, Bard, and Philosopher. The Grey Wayfarer.

Skaal!!!

“Routine Rewrite”- A Skald’s Life – Self Virtues

Happy Frigg and Freya’s Day. 

Journal Entry:

Yeah. I am rewriting my routines again.   Mostly I am trying to make writing more central and along with that reading. This means shifting some things or resigning myself to the fact that days I work don’t have a lot of free time and that is OK.  I am working toward being a published writer and a solid secondary job that allows some progress toward my other goals.

My good report on my health is no cause to rest on my laurels.  I still don’t have a ‘normal’ A1c and I would like to get there. Exercise and nutrition are still central to this so we continue.  Some changes are needed as far as diet and getting back to walking more regularly before the snow flies, and that is all part of my routine as well.

Discipline:

“Discipline is the willingness to be hard on oneself first and then if needed help with the development with others, so that greater purposes may be achieved.”

Principle: Apply discipline to every aspect of life that it can be applied.

Goal: To be following a full Paleo Diet by March 31, 2020.

Bucket List: Do a rebellious act on April Fools Day, April 1st, 2020.

To be following a full paleo diet I need to do a couple more things.  One is to eliminate all liquids that are not water and two get rid of dairy products.  The first means slowly making sure I drink less and less of other things and put more water into my routine instead. The second is a bit harder, I like cheese and cheese has no carbs.  But I must see if full Paleo has solid effects before I modify it with say some Keto elements.

Another thing I am returning to is intermittent fasting.  Mostly from the time I get up until lunchtime.  I skip breakfast and any early snacking.

My cheats on this are to allow one thing I am craving a day and two cheat meals a week which are basically an hour slot of time where I can eat what I want to eat and drink what I want to drink.  Part for social reasons but also it’s nice to get off script every now and then.

Perseverance:

“Perseverance is the ability to stand up and return from defeat and failure”

Principle: Keep getting up after every defeat or failure.

Goal: To engage in an exercise program that involves weightlifting, hiking/walking, and stretching/ yoga an average of three days a week from April 1st, 2019 to March 31st, 2020

Bucket List: To get at least one tattoo by March 18th, 2020.

Weightlifting is doing well, but I need to walk more. Fall colors will be out soon and that is not something I want to miss as it is my favorite season.  But also this might be the little bit more that I need to get truly leaned out.

Fidelity: 

“Fidelity is the will to be loyal to one’s Gods and Goddesses, to one’s Folk, to one’s self, and loyalty to one’s friends was as valued as highly as loyalty to one’s family.”

Principle: Be loyal to those who have been loyal to me.

Goal: Celebrate my wife and I’s 30th anniversary (June 10th, 2019) with a mini-vacation (achieved)

Bucket List: Discover all the countries of origin from my genetics and visit them all by March 18th, 2029.

Goal achieved here.

Higher Virtue – Wisdom:

Being wise right now is key.  Balance and focus are all important and I need to order my life more effectively so that the things I do each day lead to my eventual success. The best course of action every day is what I am looking for now.

Rest Day Routine: 

  1. Morning Routine
  2. Wife: Communication / Cuddle Time
  3. Blogging – Organize, revise, write a new post for the next day, 15 min. work on fiction.
  4. Walking – 1 hour.
  5. Cleaning – varies but one room of the apartment at least.
  6. Reading – half an hour for enjoyment.

Of all my routines, this one will probably change the least.  This one is more about execution.

Goals and Bucket List Items Achieved (Since Summer 2018):

Goals Achieved: 3

  1. Graduated College with a BS in Political Science and minors in Economics and International Business – December 2018
  2. Finalize last requirements for my degree – Internship by May 2019 – May 2019
  3. Celebrate my wife and I’s 30th anniversary (June 10th, 2019) with a mini-vacation – June 2019

Bucket List Items Achieved: 0

I remain,

The Rabyd Skald – Wandering Soul, Bard, and Philosopher. The Grey Wayfarer.

Skaal!!!

“Meditations – Side Identities” – The Rabyd Skald

Happy Frigg and Freya’s Day

A side identity is what a person is known for in certain particular contexts.  They are things that identify who you are but they are not the primary thing you are known for or the secondary one.  To me, they make up a part of who you are but do not encompass who you are.  My side identities are important parts of who I am but they are only who I am part of the time. Some of them are however known and are what is known about me.

Along with this are some that I want to have as side identities but I am still working on them. Things that will help with living my life better as a human being and supplement the primary and secondary things I am.

Weightlifter:

I think I have this side identity already.  I lift at the gym a lot and I have received compliments both at work and at the gym about how much I lift and how I look the part.  For me, this is in part about health and of course, a lot of nutritional elements go along with this.   I am a Paleo nutrition follower but that is the part of weightlifting and the healthy living that goes along with it.

Hiker:

I do want to do more hiking and more walking.  This is something I want to be a long term activity, but you know you have arrived at an identity people have of you when they start asking you advice about it.  I get that with weightlifting, but not hiking, Yet. I have a lot to learn and a lot to do here before this is a true side identity.

Reader/Scholar:

I guess in part I have some expertise that people like to ask about here.  I have read a lot and still read some.  My decision to be a writer primarily comes with an understanding that a required side identity is being a reader. I don’t probably read as much as I should and that needs to change.  That said, I have read enough that friends come to me and ask about stuff I know.

Pagan:

While I am a pagan in the sense I follow their virtues, I doubt very much people consider me a pagan yet.  I want to embrace this a little more fully as part of my cultural identity and an embracing of my cultural heritage. I suppose there is also an element of telling my former Christian identity to kiss my ass. But mostly it is about getting in touch with my past to give me spiritual strength.

There are a couple of others I am considering.  My daughter and I had a recent conversation about coffee. She wants to learn latte art, but my interest is the coffee itself.  I have never been one to drink the stuff but Paleo allows for coffee. It would be nice to find some form of coffee that my palate would actually like and doesn’t have any sugar in it.  It would be an interesting challenge to be a ‘coffee enthusiast’ because I have never really enjoyed a coffee before, but I am still meditating on it. I can see an image of me the reader sitting in my reading chair with a cup of good joe by my side so it is possible.

I am figuring some others will crop up as interests that complement other things. Almost all things are subject to the time you are inspired to give them and willing to sacrifice.

I remain,

The Rabyd Skald – Wandering Soul, Bard, and Philosopher. The Grey Wayfarer.

Skaal!!!

“Weights, Backpacks, and Overcoming Myself” – A Skald’s Life – Self Virtues

Happy Frigg and Freya’s Day. 

Journal Entry:

Recently I decided to do my weight training cycles in two-month blocks instead of three months.  Part of it is that you have to change things up from time to time because your body gets used to what you have been doing and you plateau.  By changing things and keeping them new you avoid that.  Weightlifting has some of that built-in by changing the resistance level but changing the exercises, training split and order do a lot in terms of keeping things fresh.  Keeping things challenging so you don’t get complacent is a lot of what I have learned from lifting.

The major change that will start next week is bringing back into my routines one piece of equipment – the barbell.  That means squats, bench presses, and deadlifts. I have avoided these since joining my new gym because of the hiatus before and because I wanted to make sure my body was ready with fewer aches and pains before I began.  I am ready and to be honest I need to do it.

As I look at the problem areas that remain on my body they all related to the three exercises I stated above. Those are the places where fat burn has been lowest and muscle development lightest.  Basically glutes, lower back, and chest.   It is those three missing exercises that would probably get me over the plateau I’m am on now as well and so it is time.

The other issue is walking and hiking. I don’t know but I have this image of me in retirement doing some crazy hiking. Like the United States hiking triple crown which consists of the Appalachian Trail (AT), The Continental Divide Trail (CDT) and the Pacific Crest Trail (PCT).  To do that requires a lot of training walks and shorter hikes as preparation for that.  It’s a few years down the road but I can see it in my head.

There is, of course, the issue of the Self Virtues which is to provide strength over self and provide the ability to overcome weaknesses of self.  That requires discipline, perseverance, and fidelity.  Progress doesn’t just fall out of the sky.

Discipline:

“Discipline is the willingness to be hard on oneself first and then if needed help with the development with others, so that greater purposes may be achieved.”

Principle: Apply discipline to every aspect of life that it can be applied.

Goal: To be following a full Paleo Diet by March 31, 2020.

Bucket List: Do a rebellious act on April Fools Day, April 1st, 2020.

Nutrition is also a big issue, Mostly I want right now to go through my apartment and get rid of anything I am not supposed to be doing with Paleo and start right from there.  But my wife isn’t doing it and it wouldn’t be right to impose this on her although I think it would help both of us.  So mostly I am going to have to find ways to do this myself and avoid the temptations in the kitchen.

Mostly though I need to ask the question fo whether discipline can be applied to anything else in my life.

Perseverance:

“Perseverance is the ability to stand up and return from defeat and failure”

Principle: Keep getting up after every defeat or failure.

Goal: To engage in an exercise program that involves weightlifting, hiking/walking, and stretching/ yoga an average of three days a week from April 1st, 2019 to March 31st, 2020

Bucket List: To get at least one tattoo by March 18th, 2020.

This week has had a lot of failure and defeat, time to get up and keep trying.

Fidelity: 

“Fidelity is the will to be loyal to one’s Gods and Goddesses, to one’s Folk, to one’s self, and loyalty to one’s friends was as valued as highly as loyalty to one’s family.”

Principle: Be loyal to those who have been loyal to me.

Goal: Celebrate my wife and I’s 30th anniversary (June 10th, 2019) with a mini-vacation (achieved)

Bucket List: Discover all the countries of origin from my genetics and visit them all by March 18th, 2029.

I don’t know.  Fidelity is complicated.  I am now looking at who I should be loyal to in a lot of areas of my life.  I have a very few friends left because in this latest crisis my ‘friends’ scattered like cockroaches when the light is turned on. In truth, though all my relationships are getting the – ‘OK, I am loyal to you, but why’ question? I am just not sure how much I am going to like the answers.

Higher Virtue – Wisdom:

What is the wise thing to do?  It is my last question on each decision.  After the questions: What is the loving thing to do and what is the just thing to do? I guess there can be those moments where I still don’t have a good answer.   In the meantime, I maintain discipline, keep getting up and maintain Troth. 

Rest Day Routine: 

  1. Morning Routine
  2. Wife: Communication / Cuddle Time
  3. Blogging – Organize, revise, write a new post for the next day, 15 min. work on fiction.
  4. Walking – 1 hour.
  5. Cleaning – varies but one room of the apartment at least.
  6. Reading – half an hour for enjoyment.

Once I find a full-time job rest days will be at a premium and this will be much more important.  I need to sit down and revise this one more. What I am seeing is that there will be a standard daily routine and a few things that either fall in the Work Day or Rest Day Routine.

Goals and Bucket List Items Achieved (Since Summer 2018):

Goals Achieved: 3

  1. Graduated College with a BS in Political Science and minors in Economics and International Business – December 2018
  2. Finalize last requirements for my degree – Internship by May 2019 – May 2019
  3. Celebrate my wife and I’s 30th anniversary (June 10th, 2019) with a mini-vacation – June 2019

Bucket List Items Achieved: 0

I remain,

The Rabyd Skald – Wandering Soul, Bard, and Philosopher. The Grey Wayfarer.

Skaal!!!

“Mirror Motivation” – A Skald’s Life – Self Virtues

Happy Frigg and Freya’s Day. 

Journal Entry:

Most of what involves my self goals are either exercise and/or nutrition-related and sometimes I get asked how I stay motivated.  I actually have to go back to when I was first lifting to answer that question.  I read a lot back then from the great people of fitness and you can’t do that without looking at Jack Lalanne.  Long-time fitness guru who died in his 90s, he was constantly asked how to get and stay motivated. In one interview he answered the following:

  1. Get a full-length mirror and hang it up in your bedroom or bathroom.
  2. Take off all your clothes and stand in front of that mirror and really look at your body.  Honest assessment.
  3. Look at your body and keep looking until you get mad and are motivated to do something about it if there is something that needs work and gives yourself a pat on the back for the good work you have done if it looks good.
  4. Either way, this will motivate you to continue.
  5. Do this regularly, like once every week or whenever you feel your motivation slide.

According to Jack, this was the motivation technique of himself and a good percentage of those he knew that were fitness instructors and it worked most of the time. I can believe it because it works for me. I have been doing this, I will not say consistently, but when it has been consistent my motivation never has wavered. I think the only words of caution I have ever heard about this is psychological: men tend to view themselves more positively in the mirror and women tend to be more negative.  Keep that in mind when you’re trying to make an honest assessment.

From a more spiritual point of view, viewing one’s soul in a mirror can have the same effect. Being honest with yourself and gazing at yourself in some kind fo soul mirror is beneficial. For me, it is still the same moment I am standing naked in from of a mirror trying to motivate myself, but instead, of my chest and legs, I am looking into my own eyes. The mirror to the soul is an accurate description for sure.

Image may contain: 1 person, standing and text

Discipline:

“Discipline is the willingness to be hard on oneself first and then if needed help with the development with others, so that greater purposes may be achieved.”

Principle: Apply discipline to every aspect of life that it can be applied.

Goal: To be following a full Paleo Diet by March 31, 2020.

Bucket List: Do a rebellious act on April Fools Day, April 1st, 2020.

Discipline is the key to all my other virtues.  It is the muscle virtue that makes all the others work.  Without it, I make no progress on anything so getting back to Routine is kind of my major focus right now.

Nutritionally I need to start cutting more carbs. I have lost a lot of weight so far (70 lbs.), but my honest mirror assessment is I probably have 10 to 15. I also need to really work on the Paleo being full paleo which means finding alternatives to dairy and a few other things.

This is the only bucket list item with a specific date.  In truth it is not an act of rebellion against myself, but rather me being truly who I want to be.  It is only rebellious to society and culture so that is my thinking as I plan it.

Perseverance:

“Perseverance is the ability to stand up and return from defeat and failure”

Principle: Keep getting up after every defeat or failure.

Goal: To engage in an exercise program that involves weightlifting, hiking/walking, and stretching/ yoga an average of three days a week from April 1st, 2019 to March 31st, 2020

Bucket List: To get at least one tattoo by March 18th, 2020.

Keep getting up.

Weightlifting needs to change in September.  I think I am ready to engage the barbell exercises again and as I look in the mirror it is those muscles that seem to lag behind.  Literally one of them is my gluts.  That’s my butt people, but also my lower back and chest could use some more work.    It’s the squats, deadlifts, and benchpress that are needed.

Walking and stretching will return simply if I follow my various Routines.

I still am trying to get the money for my first tattoo. Hopefully, the promotion to fulltime at work or a new job will do wonders for that coming together faster.

Fidelity: 

“Fidelity is the will to be loyal to one’s Gods and Goddesses, to one’s Folk, to one’s self, and loyalty to one’s friends was as valued as highly as loyalty to one’s family.”

Principle: Be loyal to those who have been loyal to me.

Goal: Celebrate my wife and I’s 30th anniversary (June 10th, 2019) with a mini-vacation (achieved)

Bucket List: Discover all the countries of origin from my genetics and visit them all by March 18th, 2029.

I wrote on fidelity this week so I won’t belabor the point.

This is my bucket list item with the most time, but I can get the genetics test as soon as I have the money and then I and a search site are going to get acquainted in order to find out where exactly in the world my ancestors got on the boat and came from to America.

Higher Virtue – Wisdom: 

Looking honestly in the mirror is something that has given me wisdom.  Our perspective ourselves is often skewed in our minds.  It takes the mirror reflecting back at us with us engaged in an honest assessment of what we actually see, to get aa true picture of who we are.  This is the wisdom that is found in the mirror.

Rest Day Routine: 

  1. Morning Routine
  2. Wife: Communication / Cuddle Time
  3. Blogging – Organize, revise, write a new post for the next day, 15 min. work on fiction.
  4. Walking – 1 hour.
  5. Cleaning – varies but one room of the apartment at least.
  6. Reading – half an hour for enjoyment.

In a couple weeks, you will probably see these routines change for Work and Rest Days. I am thinking some things will be every day but with shorter time spans to get the discipline of it going again.

Goals and Bucket List Items Achieved (Since Summer 2018):

Goals Achieved: 3

  1. Graduated College with a BS in Political Science and minors in Economics and International Business – December 2018
  2. Finalize last requirements for my degree – Internship by May 2019 – May 2019
  3. Celebrate my wife and I’s 30th anniversary (June 10th, 2019) with a mini-vacation – June 2019

Bucket List Items Achieved: 0

I remain,

The Rabyd Skald – Wandering Soul, Bard, and Philosopher. The Grey Wayfarer.

Skaal!!!

“Loyal Like Sigyn” – A Skald’s Life – Self Virtues

Happy Frigg and Freya’s Day.  Also a Happy Birthday to my wife. 

Journal Entry:

Sigyn is the goddess of loyalty and there is only one tale that survives that shows what this means.  She is the wife of Loki and Loki’s punishment for killing the beloved god Baldur is to have a snake drop deadly venom on his forehead.  Sigyn demonstrates her loyalty to Loki by using a cup to catch those drops so they do not hit his forehead. Periodically it was said that she had to leave to dump the cup and this is when Loki would feel the venom and writhe in agony causing earthquakes.

I am not sure if Sigyn is a good or bad example of loyalty.  It is also questionable how she is loyal to – Loki or humanity.  Is she trying to prevent the suffering of Loki or humanity at the hands of the earthquakes Loki causes as he responds to the agony of the venom?  She doesn’t display loyalty to the rest of the gods as she is trying very much to interfere with the decree of Odin.  If anything this story provides a great example of how fidelity or loyalty can get pretty complicated.

What I feel is needed with fidelity/loyalty is simple – priorities of loyalty. Rules also would help.  I will probably discuss this in greater detail in my post in a few weeks in Of Wolves and Ravens when I touch on Asatru and Fidelity. My initial thoughts are to prioritize my loyalty among the list of divine, family, friends, and self. and then create those rules that create a balanced understanding.  The thing is after so many years of being loyal to others at the expense of being loyal to myself, I feel loyalty to myself needs to be first. Then Loyalty to the rest is a sort of circle of fidelity around me. There is much thought an meditation to do here yet, so I will leave it at that.

For now, the story of Sigyn inspires thought on the subject of fidelity if nothing else.  For that this one fragment of her story that survives is beneficial in that regard.

Discipline:

“Discipline is the willingness to be hard on oneself first and then if needed help with the development with others, so that greater purposes may be achieved.”

Principle: Apply discipline to every aspect of life that it can be applied.

Goal: To be following a full Paleo Diet by March 31, 2020.

Bucket List: Do a rebellious act on April Fools Day, April 1st, 2020.

Nutritionally, I need to tighten things down a little and get the carbs as much as possible out fo my life again.  If there is anything I struggle with specifically it is things like bread and other common American diet things like that that are still in very limited ways part fo my diet. I am at the point where more micromanagement of my diet might be necessary to lose any more fat.  Since March of 2018, I have dropped from 348 lbs. to 280 lbs. through a combination of moving toward a more Paleo Diet, weightlifting and walking. At this point, it is simply a matter of getting more specific in the dietary aspects.  I am probably 80 % Paleo and I need to get to over 90 to 95 % with maybe a cheat meal once per week so eat things I enjoy.

Perseverance:

“Perseverance is the ability to stand up and return from defeat and failure”

Principle: Keep getting up after every defeat or failure.

Goal: To engage in an exercise program that involves weightlifting, hiking/walking, and stretching/ yoga an average of three days a week from April 1st, 2019 to March 31st, 2020

Bucket List: To get at least one tattoo by March 18th, 2020.

I think I have become too reliant on 13-week sections of weightlifting as far as the planning.  By the 8th or 9th week it is hard to stay focused on the same routine.  I am thinking, starting next week that my programs will be two months long instead of three with automatic changes every two months instead.  This might keep things fresh. I am also thinking I ma ready to start adding in the barbell exercises again. Walking is becoming difficult as my boots are getting worn and I need to change them out.  I really need that new job soon as there is a lot of little things that are starting to pile up that need monetary attention.

Fidelity: 

“Fidelity is the will to be loyal to one’s Gods and Goddesses, to one’s Folk, to one’s self, and loyalty to one’s friends was as valued as highly as loyalty to one’s family.”

Principle: Be loyal to those who have been loyal to me.

Goal: Celebrate my wife and I’s 30th anniversary (June 10th, 2019) with a mini-vacation (achieved)

Bucket List: Discover all the countries of origin from my genetics and visit them all by March 18th, 2029.

I have already talked about my loyalty issues above, but the main thing is loyalty to myself.  That cannot be overemphasized. If my other relationships undercut my loyalty to me, then it is going to be hard for me to maintain them.

Higher Virtue – Wisdom: 

I am trying to make wise decisions here.  What is the most loving thing to do?  What is the justest thing to do? What is the wisest thing to do? All of this focuses on myself though, because if I lose me, then all is lost.  I already know what happens when I forget myself and sacrifice everything for others.  I end up destroyed and doing very foolish things.  The wisest course will involve the most love, justice, and wisdom that is self-directed first and then to others second.

Rest Day Routine: 

  1. Morning Routine
  2. Wife: Communication / Cuddle Time
  3. Blogging – Organize, revise, write a new post for the next day, 15 min. work on fiction.
  4. Walking – 1 hour.
  5. Cleaning – varies but one room of the apartment at least.
  6. Reading – half an hour for enjoyment.

My son and I have started a kind of two-person book club and we will be starting to read a book together.  It is a natural fit in my reading slot here.

Goals and Bucket List Items Achieved (Since Summer 2018):

Goals Achieved: 3

  1. Graduated College with a BS in Political Science and minors in Economics and International Business – December 2018
  2. Finalize last requirements for my degree – Internship by May 2019 – May 2019
  3. Celebrate my wife and I’s 30th anniversary (June 10th, 2019) with a mini-vacation – June 2019

Bucket List Items Achieved: 0

I remain,

The Rabyd Skald – Wandering Soul, Bard, and Philosopher. The Grey Wayfarer.

Skaal!!!