14 miles before 5AM

Another update for today’s post!

Yesterday I completed my goal of running every weekday. I woke up at 4:30AM everyday and ran 2.5 miles with the exception of Monday, where I ran 3.5 instead. The goal was interesting because it required that I get up 15 minutes before my alarm. I thought that this would make me more exhausted throughout the day. Instead I found that I had the same level of energy for the day.

Exercising in the morning also pushed the importance of getting to bed early. I managed to get to sleep about an hour earlier each night. I didn’t feel more rested but I felt more satisfied knowing that I was exercising daily. This isn’t to say that I sprung out of bed with an enthusiastic smile on my face every morning. I found that I got out of my bed on my first alarm. Usually I roll over through 4-5 alarms.

My diet became more regulated early in the week. As Wednesday rolled around I consumed less protein and found myself eating worse than I was before I started running. I can’t remember the last time I ate so badly. I attribute it to my lack of protein consumption but it could have been a variety of other things. As I exercise more often I require a higher caloric intake and as a vegetarian most of my diet is low calories. Eating more carrots didn’t satisfy me, so I found myself reaching for chocolate instead.

Overall it was a good experience. I’m proud of myself for getting up early and completing this goal on the first attempt. It was gratifying to say that I had run a little under 14 miles before 5:00AM this week. All together that isn’t very much distance but it fit into my schedule and I made it work. More than the 0 miles from the week before.

Will I run everyday next week? Probably not, but I will be running more often in the morning. I’ll aim for 3 days a week and see how that feels. It’s going to be insane sleeping in til 5:00AM this week! I never thought I would say that!

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Going for the goals

It’s important for everyone to always be striving to achieve their goals. If you don’t have goals, then it’s important to make them. Everyone has aspirations and sometimes our aspirations can seem distant because we don’t make goals.

Lately I’ve been working on projects and getting things worked out with them. It’s immensely satisfying to even work at the goals. I can’t wait for some of the accomplishments to get out of them, but working on them is almost satisfying enough.

The Anatomy of a Dreamer is underway and I can’t wait to share with you some of our future plans. I won’t share all of the details but I’m excited nonetheless. Like I said, it’s important that you work towards your goals and try to achieve your dreams.

TGIF!

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Daring to be Different

Recently a man told a group I was in that we should not try to be “dumb, daring, or different”. It was clear he was being serious but somewhere in my mind I could not take this advice seriously. His words lit a flame in my mind, between the lines of fury and passion. This post was born days ago when it came to mind again and I wanted to share why you should be both different and daring.

Ironically, at the time, I was reading a book at the time titled “Daring Greatly“, which, as the name implies, is about embarking out past your comfort zone. It’s about accomplishment through facing fears and tackling those struggles. We’re going to tackle each part; daring, difference, and stupidity.

We all have to be different because we all have different aspirations in life. For example, some of my goals are; living in another country for a couple years, writing a book, and learning how to paint. I’m positive that the guy in the room next to me doesn’t have those same aspirations. So to accomplish my dreams I won’t get anywhere if I follow where everyone else is leading. Following the herd will only lead us where the herd goes. To get where we want to go we will have to be different. We will have to separate from the pack and venture out on our own.

Exposing ourselves is a risk. If we keep that herd analogy,  as a lone sheep we could be attacked, we could get lost, or more realistically fall back into the pack. At one point or another we’ll all be ridiculed for what we do, and we’ll question the path that we’ve chosen to take. However, every inch we walk from the pack steers us closer to where we want to go. If we continue with everyone else, we will not get the results that we want. We have to dare to be different. We have to have the courage to risk it all for what we seek.

Daring is defined by Merriam-Webster as “venturesomely bold in action or thought”. This is an important characteristic that we all need to adapt. To leave the herd we must all be “bold in action or thought”. For leaving the herd also leaves us vulnerable and exposed. This is where fear begins to take over and we decide not to venture out. We haven’t even taken the first step but we reluctantly hold back.

Oftentimes we don’t even clarify what our fears are and that is enough to stop our actions. We don’t even know what we’re afraid of but we still are too paralyzed to act. We imagine this life we want to lead but it’s trailed by thoughts of inadequacy or impossibility. We can’t quit our job to become a freelance artist because we don’t know anyone who has succeeded at it. We can’t write a book because no one would be interested in it. These are the thoughts we attach to our dreams. I encourage you to cut the weights and while being cautious, realize that you can’t plan everything out. You could fail, you could fall back into the pack. But that leaves you better prepared and more knowledgeable for when you take your next steps back out. For any of this to happen you must first be daring. You must be bold and acknowledge your fears for what they are; fears.

When others see you leaving they may call you “foolish”, for the safest spot is surely in the center of the pack. They may call you “dumb”, or “stupid”, or anything they can say to bring you back. When you leave, they are left with less. It also reminds them of their fears and why they aren’t pursuing their own dream. It forces them to confront their fears and if they do not surpass them, to ridicule those who pass their own.

Now, when I hear someone say not to be “dumb, daring, or different”, I’m brought back to this herd mentality. It’s someone calling me back into the group shouting “how dare you be different, you must be stupid. You must not know what you’re doing, you’re going to suffer.” And the truth is you will suffer. You will face things alone sometimes and you won’t always have a set of instructions on how to proceed. But you will get closer to your dreams. You will find yourself accomplishing things that you never thought you could before. And eventually… eventually, you will accomplish your dreams.

So the next time someone tells you to conform, stop and think about what you want. Think about your fears and what’s stopping you. Realize that they are only fears and all it takes to pursue your dreams is to dare to be different.

In the comments below tell me what you aspire to do. Tell me your hopes and dreams and don’t be afraid to write long or short paragraphs. Sometimes we know exactly what we want and can write endlessly and other times we don’t know exactly what we want. Either way, tell me below in the comments!

Have a wonderful night/morning/day wherever you are!

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