The Monthly Practice Report – May 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 !)
  • 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 May?

  • New Orleans, 5/1-5/8
  • Amtrak (across Louisiana & Texas): 5/9
  • Ciudad Juarez, Mexico: 5/10-5/11
  • El Paso, TX: 5/12
  • Santa Fe, NM: 5/13-5/18
  • Denver, CO: 5/19-5/22
  • Vancouver, WA: 5/23-5/27
  • Seattle, WA: 5/28-5/31

Whew – what a busy month!


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!



  • Ideal/Goal: to meditate for at least 15 minutes in the morning, before other activities
  • Total: 742 consecutive days!
    • Continued the daily practice for another month
  • How long did I meditate each day?
    • 15 minutes: 2 days
    • 30 minutes: 29 days
    • Most often amount: 30 minutes (94% of the time)!
      • Last month: 30 minutes (27 vs. 3)
  • 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.



  • 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: 11%
      • Last month: 16%
    • Breakfast: 3%
    • Lunch: 10%
    • Dinner: 30%
    • Snacks: 4%
  • Not Paleo (the “no” list above)
    • Ideal/Goal: 10% OF THE TIME (or less)
      • For the month: 14%
      • Last month: 14%
    • Breakfast: 0%
    • Lunch: 10%
    • Dinner: 30%
    • Snacks: 11%
  • Green Smoothies
    • Ideal/Goal: daily – mix of fruit, nuts and spinach, kale, avocado
    • For the month: 11 days (33% of the time)
      • Last month: 10 days
  • Salads/Greens
    • Ideal/Goal: consume a meal of greens at least once daily
    • For the month: 30 days (97% of the time)
      • Last month: 24 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 (17% of the days)
      • Last month: 9 instances
  • Alcohol
    • Ideal/Goal: 0-1 drinks per month
      • For the month: 3 (2 on Cinco De Mayo! :)
      • Last month: 0

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



  • 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: 28 (90% of the time)
    • Last month: 29
  • Other Exercise
    • Walking: 45 miles for the month!
      • That’s about 11 miles per week, or about 1.5 miles per day!
    • Hiking: 2 miles
    • Biking: 25 miles (22 in one day!)
    • PLUS: Kundalini Yoga and Core Classes!
  • Stationary
    • I do look for opportunities to stretch, change my seating position, or just to get up and move around whenever possible, particularly on the train.
    • Cars: ~4 hours
    • Buses: ~7 hours
    • Trains: ~3 hours



  • Ideal/Goal: to express my Highest Goal, my Path, my ideal Partner, my Hell Yes’s, my Strengths, my Zones of Genius, my Gratitudes, and any Big Ideas.
    • Days: 17 (55% of the time)
      • Some of the content:
        • What I love to do and what my unique gifts are (lots on this)
        • What I could create around what I’m learning (videos, articles, etc.)
        • Where is their energy in my life (what is pulling me), and what is happening organically
        • Pilot idea for a TV show :)
      • Last month: 22
    • If I don’t get to journaling in the morning (before email/work, etc.), it usually doesn’t happen.



  • My Stats:
    • 5/13/12: 130 lbs.
    • 5/20/12: 129 lbs.
    • Average:  130 lbs., 18.65 BMI
      • Last month: 133 lbs., 19.08 BMI
      • Difference: -3 lbs, -.43 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 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.
  • 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%



  • Sleep Hours
    • Ideal/Goal: to sleep for at least 7-8 hours each night
    • Average for the month: 7.26 hours
      • Last month: 7.29 hours
    • Most often amount of sleep: 7-7.5 hours
    • Longest sleep: 8.75 hours
    • Shortest sleep: 5.67 hours
    • Number of days where sleep time was < 7 hours: 7 days
      • Last month: 7 days
  • Naps
    • Number of days with naps: 6 (19% of the month)
      • Last month: 8 days
    • Average amount: 20 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: 16.85
      • Last month: 16.72
    • Most often wake hours: 17-17.5 hours
    • Longest day: 19.25 hours (bus from Albuquerque to Denver!)
    • Shortest day: 14.25 hours (the next day—catching up on sleep—ha!)
    • Number of days where awake time was > 17 hours: 15 days
      • Last month: 11 days
  • Going to Sleep
    • Ideal/Goal: go to bed around 11 pm
    • Average for the month: 11:35 pm
      • Last month: 11:30 pm
    • Most often sleep time: 11:30 pm-12:00 am
    • Earliest sleep time: 10:10 pm
    • Latest sleep time: 2:00 am (arriving in Denver and staying up late to talk nutrition!)
    • Number of days where sleep time was past 11:15 pm: 10 days
      • Last month: 17 days
  • Waking Up
    • Ideal/Goal: wake up around 7 am
    • Average for the month: 6:50 am
      • Last month: 6:45 am
    • Most often wake time: 6:30-7:00 am
    • Earliest wake time: 6:00 am
    • Latest wake time: 9:30 am (sleeping in from Denver arrival)
    • Number of days where wake time was later than 7:15 am: 4 days
      • Last month: 2 days



  • Working Hours
    • Ideal/Goal: 6-7 hours per day, with each chunk being only 90-120 mins.
      • Days worked: 30 (97% 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: 28
      • Average hours per day: 5.47
        • Last month: 6.08
      • Number of days where work was > 7 hours: 9 days (29% of the time)
        • Last month: 9 days
      • Most hours in one day: 9 hours
    • Blocks of Working Time
      • Ideal/Goal: work for no longer than 90 minutes or two hours at a time
      • Number of blocks > 2 hrs: 15 instances
        • Longest working session: 3.5 hours
        • Last month: 8 instances and 3 hours
    • In February, I began tracking  as part of my $100 a day goal
  • Days Offline
    • Ideal/Goal: one 24-hour period off the computer each week
    • Number of days: 4 (100%)
      • Last month: 4 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: 24 (77% 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 May: 121 days



  • Contacts
    • Ideal/Goal: to wear 8 hours or less per day
    • Days worn: 24 (77% of the month)
      • Last month: 23
      • Average hours per day: 6.85
        • Last month: 6.86
        • Average time I pop them in: 4:15 pm
        • Average time I take them out: 11:30 pm
      • Number of days where use was > 8 hours: 8 days (26% of the time)
        • Last month: 4 days
      • Most hours in one day: 9 hours
  • Vitamins
    • Flaxseed Oil
      • I began taking 1300 mg once/day. The bottle states this is “a premium source of Omega 3,” and then I recently read that our body can’t really use what’s in flaxseed.
      • It gets a bit technical, but essentially our body can’t convert what’s in these pills, and so it appears that Fish Oil pills (or directly eating fish) might be a better source of Omega 3’s. Check out this article for more!
      • How much to consume also has much to do with your ratio of Omega 3’s to 6’s; so, it looks like this journey will continue…


What I Learned + What’s New:

    • Reducing Animal Products + Non-Paleo even further
      • I think I might see if I can get both number down to around 5% each.
      • If I’m truly a hunter-gatherer, then I’d probably eat meat only once or twice a month.
    • Eating Salads!
      • Really thrilled to see that I ate greens just about every day in May – so important!!
    • Getting up early (before 7 am) is getting pretty easy, and fairly regular.
    • I’d still like to see my bedtime be earlier on average; I need to just wind down earlier, and get off the computer! I’ve recently begun reading for an hour before bed, and as long as I have a book I enjoy, I want to fit that time in!
    • I’ve really been pushing myself lately with blocks of time, as I’m finding there’s more I want to crank out (like all the posts appearing here)—there’s so much I want to share, and I don’t want it to take three years, ya know? :)
    • The Morning Creativity practice continues to be amazing—read more about it here!



OK – that’s the monthly report for May!


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!




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.