30 day challenges

I enjoy challenging myself for small amounts of time to see if I like part or all of an activity. In October, I stopped watching and reading the news, as well as checking up on social media. It helped me see that while I missed out on some big things, it made me realize I was watching or reading too much. I've cut back and it's helped. I tried out a calorie counting challenge and that failed almost immediately - not because it was difficult to log the food I was eating, but because I started under eating and losing weight rapidly because I wanted to go under the number of calories I ate the day previous.

I have a few challenges that I would like to try out, and documenting my progress would be helpful. Things I'm interested in:

1. No Added Sugar - fruit and sweet onions and carrots are okay, but honey, candy, etc are out. I'm interested to see if I miss the sugar or if I have any appreciable benefits.

2. Go to the gym at least 5 times a week - now that I have a workout routine and a gym that I really like, what gains can I get if I take a month and focus on strength training?
      2a. Do PT exercises for hip and knees every day - they do not require any equipment. I forget to do my exercises until I do something that requires balance and get a bit of annoyance for not being better as I'd forgotten to do exercises.

3. Read a book per week - I'm a fast reader, but I'm not picking up a book like I would prefer, and instead opting for YouTube. I'm unsure if my goal is attainable because I have some long books, and I still need to sleep for 8 hours a day and work for 40 hours a week, and have a social life. This one may or may not be a stretch goal.

4. Play piano every day for a month - I enjoy playing piano, but am having trouble getting the motivation/craving/etc to actually sit down and start playing daily. I'm looking forward to the level of proficiency I had when I was 23.

5. Go to sleep every night at 10pm, and wake up every morning at 6am. That includes weekends. I usually sleep in until 7 or 8 on the weekends, but I'm interested to see if I feel sleepier on weekend days or if it's easier to fall asleep at 10 on Sunday night if I've gotten up at 6am that morning.

6. Setting priorities and selecting a productivity system - I find I have bursts of productivity, do too much, get tired, and then do nothing after for days. I end up with "Well, I cleaned this and that, why don't I also reorganize this over here, and then go for a run, and, oh, I haven't done any push ups in a while, I'll do some of those." and then nothing for three days because I don't HAVE to and I'm tired. My desire is to set priorities and use a productivity system that will be successful. One or two things a day. No more than three, or else I might get tired or think I'm well past where I need to be.

Six challenges would cover half a year, and knowing that I'll have at least two months that require travel that would interrupt a schedule, I'll keep it to this list for now.

As far as my habits go - today I did body weight exercises and my PT exercises at home. I also played some more Hanon on piano.


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