I’ve joined Sam Heughan’s “My Peak Challenge” (MPC) initiative once again. I did in 2015 and 2016, but never really took part actively. Last year I felt overwhelmed by the seemingly strict prep programme and all the activity in the Facebook group. The latter still feels overwhelming and time consuming this time around so I’m not sure how much time I will actually spend on there. After all I’m not using Facebook all that much to begin with.
In January I wrote a long post about why I wanted to do a non-physical-challenge of being more mindful and more focused in my life for MPC 2016. I did alright with that for the first few months of the year, but for some reason lost my way over the summer and got dragged back down into too much procrastination. Too much negative thinking. Too much worrying and anxiety.
That’s why I actually wanted to solely focus on that part of my life as my MPC 2017 again. Probably because I wasn’t sure if I’m ready or able or even willing to do all the physical exercises and follow all the nutrition rules from MPC and such. Until I realized… I don’t have to it 100% by the book so to speak! Yes, I’d probably reach any fitness or weight loss goal quicker if I strictly follow all the MPC plans, but maybe for me it will work better on my own time and with my own workout regime or gym membership. Which I admit I failed doing much with this year as well. That doesn’t mean I will disregard all the MPC workout and nutrition plans. Especially the nutrition plan is something I might make good use of, because too much food and wrong food choices are definitely the major contributing factor to my overweight state and not foremost the lack of exercise.
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Without further ado, here are my five My Peak Challenges for 2017:
#1 Lose at least 25 pounds
Paying more attention to what I eat and how I eat should help a lot with that. I’ve started logging my food with the Lifesum App again to keep a better track of where all the calories are coming from. It also syncs with Fitbit, so I can quickly see if I can allow myself that piece of chocolate or not ;-) I will also try to be more active, go to the gym more regularly and thus help with the weight loss, but haven’t really set any specific goal for that (yet).
#2 Get at least 300 km of cycling done this summer
I used to love cycling and did it a lot a couple of years back. I even bought a very good bike two years ago. But for some reason I didn’t really cycle at all this year. Which in retrospect kind of sucks. I blamed the long working hours and the weather and all, but the truth is, I was just plain lazy. 300 km is doable for someone who is actually starting over, I think.
#3 Bag my first Munro
I wasn’t 100% sure if I’d want to spend my summer vacation in Scotland again next year. At least that’s what I told my co-workers, but to be honest I was actually pretty set on it ;-). As I’ve already scheduled time off in May for Frank Turner’s Lost Evenings followed by some relaxing time at the seaside I knew I’d have to postpone my “summer vacation” till after the school holidays this year. Which turned out to be great timing, because then it will be September and the first MPC event will happen in Scotland in September. So I might just be there for that as well. Anyway, next time I’ll be in Scotland I will definitely want to follow in Sam’s footsteps and “bag a Munro”, i.e. climb to the top of one of the 282 Scottish mountains which are over 3000 ft. No idea which one I will do though, it depends on where I’m actually going to spend most of my vacation…
#4 Meditate daily
Like I mentioned above I actually did well with this goal for a while in the first half of 2016. Thanks to yet another app: Calm, which I can highly recommend to anyone. I’ve tried to make it a daily thing recently again and I’m still kind of struggling, which is stupid, because I know and feel how much I actually gain from a more regular practice. But I find it really challenging for some reason, which is probably exactly why I should keep doing it, right?
#5 Finally start writing that novel
That’s honestly the biggest and most scary challenge. At least to put it down here in writing. I had a few attempts at NaNoWriMo over the years. I never finished and most of the times I even gave up pretty quickly. But that last idea from this November is still lurking in my mind and doesn’t let me go, so I thought I better just give in and roll with it. The goal here is to have 50.000 words till September 2017.
I will also try to follow some writing advice Lauren Graham wrote about in “Talking As Fast As I Can…”. Advice she in turn had gotten from her friend and screen writer Don Roos: Each day set aside a certain amount of time to write. Either work on your novel or just do some journaling – and I will add writing a blog post as third option. But the main goal is: WRITE! And most importantly, don’t do anything else in that set period of time. Don’t check Twitter or mails or anything else online. Which for me honestly might be the most challenging aspect of it all. Wish me luck on this one ;-)
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I will try to give a status update on each one every month, even though for the first half of the year, I might not have anything new to report on the cycling and the Munro bagging.