Thursday, October 31, 2013

Happy Halloween!

Today, I'm dressed like this:

I was pretty much always a witch for Halloween growing up. If I wasn't a witch, I would be a bunny or a dog or something cute. Never something super girly. Witches really embody Halloween for me.

I'm not sure when Halloween became one of my favorite holidays, and I don't go ALL out getting dressed up or going out to parties, but there's just something about it that I love. I love decorating my house with witches and ghosts and creepy things. I love watching "It's the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown!" I love going to the pumpkin patch, through corn mazes and haunted houses and to harvest festivals. I love PUMPKINS. Eating them and carving them.

My office had a pumpkin carving competition. I was bummed that not too many people participated, but that did allow Mr. Snailey here to clench the top spot in the "best decorated" category.

We made him last night! I took care of the butternut squash part, while Aaron actually carved the pumpkin. Tonight I'm planning on getting home early to wait for any trick-or-treaters we might have. This is our first year in a real house with a front door and everything, so I hope we get at least a couple kids coming by! I think we'll also roast our pumpkin seeds and bake some muffins.

The muffins aren't very Halloween-y, but Aaron has a potluck tomorrow at work, so ya know.

How are you celebrating?!

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

October at Smith

We were lucky to spend two weekends at Smith Rock State Park this month! I hadn't been out there in months and months before that, which I think turned out to be a good thing. Smith Rock does strange things to my mental game in terms of climbing.

I let the crowds bother me. And the heat (even in the crispness of the central Oregon fall, the sun on those rocks is sweltering, still). But the past two trips have been really great, and I've made progress (and yes, sends)!

And I've been such a terrible blogger, I haven't even written about the new addition to our family that came in September: Charlie!!!

Charlie is a seven-month-old pitbull/lab mix. Here he is with Boone, cuddled up in the shade:

I almost can't handle how adorable they are. Charlie has a very sweet, calm disposition. He's sort of slow and lumbering. Much more thoughtful and accepting than Boone. They balance each other out well. They're both learning things form each other, and I love watching them interact.

We're hanging out at the Morning Glory wall and the Dihedrals mostly. Aaron's working a 12b called Latest Rage! Here's me this past weekend, after my send of Nine Gallon Buckets and before working my project, Cool Ranch Flavor. I was on Cool Ranch when we started feeling a few raindrops, which turned into a bit of a downpour and mass evacuation from the park. Eek!

I'll leave you with Ryan Palo, a guy who can climb much, much harder than me. Here he is aiding his way up Scar Face to set up a giant top rope SWING at the top. You stand, tied in, on top of a nearby boulder and let your belayer pull you off so you can swing back and forth a few times. It looks like a blast!

Smith Rock IS a beautiful place. I'm too hard on it sometimes.

Thursday, October 10, 2013

Fito, I quit you!

I have a confession to make. For the past.... year? (I don't even know how long), I've been an obsessed "Fitocrat". For those that don't know, I'm talking about the social networking/fitness tracking site, Fitocracy.

And after this weekend, I quit. Why this weekend? Well, because I'm SO close to leveling up, and if my projections are correct, it will happen sometime Friday or Saturday and.... look! I already sound like a crazy person.

Here's my profile page for the site:

Below this, my daily workouts are tracked and displayed for all to see. But not just my workouts. I've gotten to the point where I track every time I walk up stairs. Every walk I take to a different part of campus during work. Every bike commute (a little more legit, but whatever).

I feel obsessed. In a bad way.

I started "working out" when we moved to Alabama in November, 2012. There wasn't much to do there. We didn't know many people, and my job offered a discounted YMCA membership. I went to the gym a couple times a week and started running. I quickly got up to half marathon distances. We also ventured to the Birmingham bouldering gym on Thursday evenings and tried to climb outside as often as we could. And I felt AMAZING, and I wanted to keep going!

To ensure I got my daily workout in, I used a calendar and wrote a G, Y, R or C near the date to designate a day I'd gone to the gym, yoga studio, for a run or climbing. And then I discovered Fitocracy.

I love the internet. And my new love for fitness fit in perfectly with Fitocracy's goal, so I started tracking. On Fitocracy, you're awarded "points" for your workout.

For example, A recent, slow 8-mile run on light hills was worth 1028 points. That's a lot.

Two hours of climbing inside is always worth 777 points.

An hour of yoga? 234 points.

The more I used the site and the more I leveled up, the more I became more obsessed with logging points. I set a personal goal to get to 1000 points every day, which lead to the aforementioned logging of stair-walking. I worked out (with a rest day or two thrown in every week). But, on days where I went to a one-hour hot yoga class, I only earned 200-something points? And that didn't seem fair!

The points awarded for yoga is a highly disputed subject by my fellow yogis on the site. The Fitocracy Gods have decided that yoga is not as strenuous as lifting (which is the preferred Fitocracy workout ...Do you even lift, Bro?!).

The point is that it's all so arbitrary. I have been in yoga classes that probably burned thousands of calories, and I have been the typical "girl on the elliptical" burning maybe a couple hundred calories in half an hour ....but I still got the points!

The other thing about the site is that the longer you use it, the longer it takes you to "level up" because there are more points between each level. I'm finishing up 60,000 points to get to level 38 at the moment. Ugh.

Then there are the groups. Oh, the groups. In the climbing community, there is something we call "spray" ...which many Fitocracy climbers seem to have no concept of. It's bad form to talk about what grades you're climbing, but this is common place in the Fitocracy forums.

It's also common to post yourself in crazy Yoga poses. Bragging! I can't take the bragging! Yoga, especially is NOT about ego.

Everything on Fitocracy seems to be about ego. And points. And I'm just....tired of it.

I'm tired of doing those few extra pushups or situps just for the points. Not that they weren't good for me, but.... It's just been too often that I've done an extra set that I didn't really need to do!

I'd love to find a free tool (besides myfitnesspal, which I'm not a fan of), that more accurately tracks health and fitness levels. But I'm done with Fitocracy. After I level up. *cries*