The Monthly Practice Report – July 2012

 

 

Welcome to The Monthly Practice Report, where I detail my practice of healthy living: the commitments, goals, and other metrics!

 

 

Why I’m doing this:

  • To be completely transparent – if there’s something you want to know about my health, chances are it’s down below. (if not, leave a comment or send me an email!)
  • To share the actual numbers with you in hopes that it makes this lifestyle (or any part of it) seem a little more attainable
  • To publicly track my progress among several categories
  • To provide cool resources that I find helpful
  • To put my money where my mouth is and practice what I preach! :)

You’ll see information below on how I’m doing with my practices and anything else (hopefully) relevant!

I’ll also share some lessons learned and plans/goals for the future.

 

Please let me know what you think!

If anything is unclear, if you’d like more information on a certain topic, or if there’s something I’ve left out, I’m open to hearing all feedback and questions. Just leave a comment below.

Thanks – and I hope you enjoy this month’s report! :-)

 

Where was I in July?

  • Cottage Grove, OR: 7/1-7/4
  • Portland, OR (WDS): 7/5-7/8
  • Crater Lake, OR/Road Trip: 7/9-7/10
  • Portland, OR: 7/11-7/12
  • Eugene, OR: 7/13-7/14
  • Ashland, OR: 7/15-7/16
  • Santa Cruz, CA: 7/17
  • Los Angeles, CA: 7/18-7/31

 

Onto the Numbers!

FYI: some of the links below are affiliate links that will earn me a commission if you purchase through them. If you do, I absolutely appreciate it; if you’d rather not, that’s cool, too. If you have any questions about any of the products or services, please let me know!

 

MEDITATION

  • Ideal/Goal: to meditate for at least 15 minutes in the morning, before other activities
  • Total: 803 consecutive days!
    • Continued the daily practice for another month
  • How long did I meditate each day?
    • 15 minutes: 1 day
    • 30 minutes: 30 days
    • Most often amount: 30 minutes (97% of the time )!
      • Last month: 30 minutes (30 vs. 0)
  • Continue to use my Blissitations tracks
    • They’re really helpful for concentration, and one of the best parts is that I never have to think about how long it is – I just keep going until the track is over.

 

NUTRITION

  • Ideal/Goal: since December 2010, I have been following the Paleo diet, which is lean meats, fish, fruits, vegetables, nuts and seeds. No legumes, grains, starches, processed foods, or sugars. Dairy is OK (raw/unpasteurized is best), though I tend to avoid it.
  • When a guest in someone’s home, I defer to gratitude and do not refuse meals; that does not, however, give me free reign to eat whatever I want – everything in moderation.
  • There are also “non-paleo” foods I still enjoy, mostly pizza, bread, and other baked goods. I occasionally allow myself these items – I’d rather be flexible and have a good time, than rigid and mopey. :-)
  • Animal Products (red meat, chicken, pork, fish, eggs, and dairy)
    • Ideal/Goal: 20% OF THE TIME (or less)
      • For the month: 9%
      • Last month: 2%
    • Breakfast: 3%
    • Lunch: 3%
    • Dinner: 30%
    • Snacks: 3%
  • Not Paleo (the “no” list above)
    • Ideal/Goal: 10% OF THE TIME (or less)
      • For the month: 16%
      • Last month: 19%
    • Breakfast: 3%
    • Lunch: 10%
    • Dinner: 23%
    • Snacks: 16%
  • Green Smoothies
    • Ideal/Goal: daily – mix of fruit, nuts and spinach, kale, avocado
    • For the month: 17 days (55% of the time)
      • Last month: 28 days
  • Salads/Greens
    • Ideal/Goal: consume a meal of greens at least once daily
    • For the month: 20 days (65% of the time)
      • Last month: 28 days
  • Sugar
    • Ideal/Goal: to avoid food with added sugar, and to limit my intake of high glycemic foods (honey, agave)
    • For the month: 6 instances (19% of the days)
      • Main culprit: chocolate chips!
      • Last month: 11 instances
  • Alcohol
    • Ideal/Goal: 0-1 drinks per month
      • For the month: 2
      • Last month: 0

**Above percentages calculated for 30 days with an average of 90 meals + 70 snacks

 

EXERCISE

  • Ideal/Goal: some form of movement every day; could my morning options (see below), hiking, biking, or walking – something to keep me fit, to maintain and sustain me! 
  • At least 20 minutes of activity before meditation
    • Includes one or more of the following: yoga, energization exercises, tai chi warms-ups, balance poses, pull-ups, and stretching
    • Days: 27 (87% of the time)
    • Last month: 24
  • Other Exercise
    • Walking: 24.5 miles
      • Portland and Ashland, OR
    • Hiking: 9.5 miles
      • Crater Lake, OR
      • Malibu Canyon, CA
    • Bicycling: 32 miles
      • Cottage Grove to Dorena Lake
      • Ashland, OR
    • Habitat for Humanity Build: 8 hours
    • Sprints, Tree Pull-Ups and Box Jumps at Runyon Canyon
  • Stationary
    • Train: 12.5 hours
    • Car: 26 hours (sat in Paleo Chair for parts)
    • Sat for 3-hour movie: twice!

 

JOURNAL

  • Ideal/Goal: to express my Highest Goal, my Path, my ideal Partner, my Values, my Hell Yes’s, my Strengths, my Zones of Genius, my Gratitudes, and any Big Ideas.
    • Days: 12 (39% of the time)
      • Some of the content:
        • My Passions, Zones of Genius, and where there is Need
        • Interactive Concierge concept
        • TV Show ideas
        • Article ideas
        • What do I want to focus on?
        • How will I earn a living?
      • Last month: 22
    • If I don’t get to journaling in the morning (before email/work, etc.), it usually doesn’t happen.

 

WEIGHT

  • My Stats:
    • 7/16/12: 130 lbs.
    • 7/25/12: 131 lbs.
    • 7/31/12: 132 lbs.
    • Average: 131 lbs., 18.79 BMI
      • Last month: 132 lbs., 18.94 BMI
      • Difference: -1 lbs, –.25 BMI
  • Weight/BMI
    • I weigh myself (usually) on the same day of the week, first thing in the morning – before eating or drinking anything.
    • According to the BMI data, I am within the healthy range (18.5-24.9 for men and women)
      • For my height, underweight would be below 127 lbs, and overweight would be above 174 lbs. (see this article from Livestrong.com for how to find the weight range.)
      • Formula to calculate your BMI: ([your weight in pounds] x 703)/ [your height in inches]2
        • Example:  (150 x 703) = 105,450/ (70 x 70) = 21.5 (within the healthy range)
    • It’s tricky because I found many charts online where according to those, I was underweight – it’s tough to know the validity of those sites, so I think BMI is a much more reliable figure.
    • OK, now I’m not so sure about how accurate BMI is when it comes to health. Really, I think it boils down to how do you feel? and do you have enough energy to do what you need?
  • Body Fat (when available)
    • For body fat %, I’ve used scales that send electromagnetic pulses through the feet to determine body fat. With any device, I’m going to assume there’s a ± 2-3%.
    • Average for men is 18-24%; athletes typically compete at 6-13%

 

SLEEPING AND AWAKE

  • Sleep Hours
    • Ideal/Goal: to sleep for at least 7-8 hours each night
    • Average for the month: 7.07 hours
      • Last month: 7.54 hours
    • Most often amount of sleep: 6.5-7 hours
    • Longest sleep: 8.67 hours
    • Shortest sleep: 6.0 hours
    • Number of days where sleep time was < 7 hours: 14 days
      • Last month: 3 days
  • Naps
    • Number of days with naps: 12 (29% of the month)
      • Last month: 12 days
    • Average amount: 22 minutes
    • Mostly occurred on days with lots of walking/biking or being in transit
  • Awake Hours
    • Ideal/Goal: to be awake for 16-17 hours
    • Average for the month: 16.95 hours
      • Last month: 16.46
    • Most often wake hours: 17-17.5 hours
    • Longest day: 19.5 hours
    • Shortest day: 14.25 hours
    • Number of days where awake time was > 17 hours: 16 days
      • Last month: 8 days
  • Going to Sleep
    • Ideal/Goal: go to bed around 11 pm
    • Average for the month: 12:05 am
      • Last month: 11:25 pm
    • Most often sleep time: 12-12:30 am
    • Earliest sleep time: 10:30 pm
    • Latest sleep time: 1:45 am
    • Number of days where sleep time was past 11:15 pm: 25 days (yikes!)
      • Last month: 8 days
  • Waking Up
    • Ideal/Goal: wake up around 7 am
    • Average for the month: 7:15 am
      • Last month: 7:00 am
    • Most often wake time: 7-7:30 am
    • Earliest wake time: 5:40 am (camping!)
    • Latest wake time: 9:30 am
    • Number of days where wake time was later than 7:15 am: 15 days
      • Last month: 6 days

 

PRODUCTIVITY

  • Working Hours
    • Ideal/Goal: 6-7 hours per day, with each chunk being only 90-120 mins.
      • Days worked: 22 (71% of the time)
        • My days offline (see below) may go from one evening to the next, rather than one whole day, so I may end up working a little bit every day
        • Last month: 29
      • Average hours per day: 5.63 
        • Last month: 6.47
      • Number of days where work was > 7 hours: 6 days (19% of the time)
        • Last month: 15 days
      • Most hours in one day: 10
    • Blocks of Working Time
      • Ideal/Goal: work for no longer than 90 minutes or two hours at a time
      • Number of blocks > 2 hrs: 8 instances
        • Longest working session: 3 hours
        • Last month: 11 instances and 3 hours
    • In February, I began tracking how much I’m working and earning as part of my $100 a day goal
  • Days Offline
    • Ideal/Goal: one 24-hour period off the computer each week
    • Number of days: 9 (100%)
      • Last month: 5 days
      • I took off July 4th, July 6-11 (Word Domination, Camping, Habitat for Humanity), and then a couple more weekend days
  • Morning Creativity Practice
    • Ideal/Goal: waking up an hour earlier to focus on creative work (before exercise and meditation)!
    • Days with Morning Creativity Practice: 20 (64% of the time)
      • Last month: 22
  • iDoneThis – a simple online tool that helps me record what I did everyday!
    • My streak as of the end of July: 182 days

 

OTHER HEALTH

  • Contacts
    • Ideal/Goal: to wear 8 hours or less per day
    • Days worn: 26 (84% of the month)
      • Last month: 24
      • Average hours per day: 6.89
        • Last month: 6.95
        • Average time I pop them in: 5:00 pm
        • Average time I take them out: 12:15 am
      • Number of days where use was > 8 hours: 6 days (19% of the time)
        • Last month: 3 days
      • Most hours in one day: 9.83
  • Vitamins
    • Nothing to report this month!

 

What I Learned + What’s New:

  • MEDITATION
    • The 30-minute meditation commitment is definitely becoming easier. In the last three months, there have only been TWO days where I only meditated for 15 minutes!!
    • It’s also very cool to pass the 800-day mark. :)
  • NUTRITION
    • Very happy again with my animal products number (9% for the month). I’ve really felt that if I were a nomad thousands of years ago, I wouldn’t be eating that much meat anyway!
    • I think it’s easier to eat salads when you commit to it; I mean: how tough is it to find (or make) a salad?!? :)
    • My non-Paleo and Sugar numbers were again higher than I’d like. Ideally, I’d like to see that number in the low single-digits. I believe it’s possible; it’s just my sweet tooth (aka old habits) winning out.
  • SLEEPING + AWAKE
    • On several levels, I really pushed myself in July: because of the World Domination Summit, camping, and being back in LA, I wasn’t sleeping as much as I’d like, and was staying up later than usual.
    • I never got sick, which I feel is a testament to a healthy lifestyle, but the experience was not optimal. I have a feeling part of what kept me going was adrenaline and excitement.
    • It’s also much easier to be “off” in terms of sleep cycle when you’re staying on someone’s couch and they don’t go to bed until late… :)
    • I’m also finding that I just function better when I get at least 7.5 hours of sleep, if not 8! (and that’s not unusual for humans; many of us just don’t make it a priority)

 

***

OK – that’s the monthly report for July!

 

How are your practices going?

 

I’d love to hear your response + any other comments you have below!

And if you have any feedback or questions about something you’re tackling, feel free to share!

 

Looking forward to learning more!
Nathan

 

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About

Former life: actor/office worker/virtual assistant; lived in Los Angeles for 11 years. Since then: sold nearly everything, took a $5 flight to Hawaii, lived there for 3 months, wrote an eGuide about all of it, and still traveling. Currently: digital nomad – looking to improve myself, have fun and serve others.

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