I don’t even know what to talk about in 2018. The year has gone by in a blaze so fast that I can’t even recall what was going on. I’ve been on multiple international trips, multiple new national parks, and met a lovely woman are probably the main highlights.
Group Adventures and connecting with old friends
I think this years has been hallmarked most by connecting with friends on epic adventures. More so than before especially as people start moving apart and being busy with their own lives I’ve wanted to connect back. I did an awesome 2 week trip to New Zealand with Jared, Shandy, Alan, and Ashlii. I went camping and caving with an long time friend Melissa. Multiple weekend excursions to Los Angeles, Santa Fe, Belden, Big Basin, and countless other little adventures always with some friends that make the journeys so much better.
I ended up doing my 30th birthday in Alaska. I invited some people that I figured would enjoy the outdoor activities and be great to travel with. I ended up with a 5 person crew who were down for glacier kayaking, glacier climbing, and visiting National Parks. Turning 30 though has been kind of indifferent. I can’t really tell what’s going to happen for the next decade but I guess the youth and exuberance of my early 20s is over. I can still do more and reinvent myself, nothing is stopping me really. I think the big thing is just going have to be realizing that I don’t have unlimited time anymore and that I should probably focus on a few things I could be doing well. I could choose to reinvent myself but I’m happy with my career path and my work. I like the things I do and the opportunities I have open to me.
This year I had a lot of first dates but one specifically led to something more. I had a casual coffee date on a Sunday before I was going to a potluck. We then proceeded to have 3 days in 8 days and realized that we made each other laugh, loved our pups (and each other’s pups), and had a lot of shared values. We have a pretty complicated setup with living in San Francisco and Oakland and both having dogs but we make it work because we like each other that much. Even though it’s been a few months we’ve already been on a week long road trip, 2 weddings, and already booked multiple flights for next year. I’m excited.
I ended up doing a giant solo trip to Vietnam for almost 3 weeks and I discovered that I hate solo travel for that long. I ended up visiting Hanoi, Ninh Binh, Hue, Hoi An, Phong Nha, and Ho Chi Minh City and it was a LOT. I ended up doing two things that I haven’t done ever before and that was: rebooking my entire itinerary. I thought that Christmas was a big time in Vietnam but discovered that it’s the off season while I was there. So instead of trying to do the schedule that I had planned out I cut a bunch of time in Hue and Hoi An and spent more time caving. I explored some REMARKABLE and awesome caves. It was so much fun and the caves out there are a wonder of the world. The formations and the intensity of these caves and the activities you can do in them and around them. The best thing about Oxalis is they having a saying: you never lose weight on our trips. The food is that delicious. I did all this rebooking and rescheduling one quiet night in Hanoi.
More importantly though: I don’t like solo travel that much. Yeah it affords certain experiences that are new but I get tired of it real qiuck. It’s kind of exhausting and it’s hard to motivate yourself to go out and do things sometimes when you are by yourself. You have to travel with people who enable you to do more fun things so it’ll be good to have someone to go out with.
I took a lot of YMCA swimming classes last year. I took Level I once, and Level II 3 times. It took me a long time to get comfortable and honestly I’m still not super comfortable in the water. But more importantly I could do it! I swam a bunch of long distances in the water when I was caving in Vietnam. I felt comfortable dunking my head and swimming in other places. It wasn’t always the best, I was easily tired and exhausted swimming longer distances but I felt better. I’m not sure how the long term goal of this will be but I shall continue pushing myself to swim better.
I ended up getting a ski pass for the 2017-2018 season for Tahoe. I went a few times with my friend Nina and her crew of friends and I went one by myself on the ski bus. It was… okay. I like skiing and it’s fun but it’s so cumbersome to get up there. The entire month of February also was bad and by the time there was snow on the ground I was in New Zealand (yes shitty complaint). So I ended up only going 6-7 times. Mel doesn’t care for skiing and we’re doing so many trips this year that I decided to opt out of the pass this year and the goal will be just to get Ryoga to snow.
Resolutions from 2018
The goals from 2018 were just 5 simple tasks that I wanted to accomplish in a habit. It was about maintaining and keeping up streaks as much as possible.
I ended up starting with 5/7 days of the week being veggie which was easy to maintain for the first few months but I eventually moved to 6/7 days. I was supposed to keep reducing this but I decided that my one day of week allowing myself a cheat was pretty nice schedule. I also swapped out to being a pescatarian diet early on when I realized that I wanted another source of protein that wasn’t just lentils. I think this balance has worked out the best for me so I’m going to reduce my impact of meat eating. I have broken this a few times over the past year but been pretty consistent for about 49/52 weeks of the year. More importantly, this is now automatic. I don’t have to think about it.
I ended up not being able to run regularly throughout the year. I did keep a regular routine up for a long time and was able to accomplish an old resolution of a 8 minute mile. That took a lot longer for me to do but I felt happy with that. I’m not sure what else I would hope to accomplish with this though and how to make running into a more compelling habit.
This one was bad. I ended up not being able to do it for the large part and continued watching old television shows but I did get a lot of books because combined with bikes, running routines, and walking my dog I devoured and caught up to every podcast I had and listened to at least half a dozen audio books. I also joined a Book Club which has been pretty fun and exposed to me books I wouldn’t have even thought of reading. The oddest so far has been Nutshell, a book about a murder told from the perspective of the mother’s unborn child.
I talked about this above and I feel I accomplished.
Resolutions for 2019
Running Goal, destination marathon or 500 total miles
I’ve run a marathon which led to a lot of running. I’ve done a challenge to run 100 miles in a month. I’ve challenged myself to run a faster 6 mile pace. I wonder if I could keep up something across the year more consistently? I don’t know what the best approach for this but I feel better when I run. And motivating myself is easier when I have a goal.
I originally was going do the Stockholm Marathon in June but with a lot of trips in April and May lining up it seems too aggressive to aim for that. I think I work best with a long distance goal. The 100 miles a month is too much but I think 500 miles in a year is a nice goal between a regular year (about 300 miles in a year) and my marathon training (600ish miles in a year).
The important thing here is that I’m going to have to get Ryoga running. Time in the morning to walk him + running time combined will the only reasonable way to get this done.
Goal: 500 Miles Run / Year & Get Ryoga to run 2 miles with me in the morning
Backpacking with Ryoga
The goal for this year is going to backpacking with Ryoga. I successfully camped with him last year and it wasn’t that big a deal. So if you know of any dog friendly trails that are fun to do, I’d appreciate any advice. There might be more camping trips in the future and other little adventures like that. The goal will also be to take him to the snow so that I can tell if he enjoys that experience too.
Goal: Take Ryoga backpacking
Never Work Through Lunch
Lyft has been a lot more work recently. We had almost 4 months without another mobile engineer, 6 months without any Android resource, and we’re finally at a stage where the team has enough resources to build the feature we want and improve things. But something that I’ve noticed that I’ve done through this past 6 months is that I’ve worked through lunch. This next year I’ve officially gotten acknowledgment that some non-zero percentage of my time should be allocated toward making sure projects run smoothly. I won’t be coding as much but I’ll get to be able to flex my skills at being able to manage and review multiple projects.
If you ever wanted to visit Lyft or work anywhere near SOMA/Mission or even FiDi and want to grab lunch, let me know!
Goal: Never eat lunch at my desk
I know this is one of those things that just seems like duh or maybe not worth while. But for some reason, I feel like I could have a better body weight. My weight has shifted a lot over the years. I started at almost 200 lbs in 2010, dropping down to 145 in April 2014. Though even during my marathon time period I was still at 160 lbs so maybe this is not reasonably possible? But the important problem is that I feel sluggish, I feel tired, running is harder, swimming is harder. I’m getting more tired. Some of it is age, but I think more of it is physical fitness. I think instead of aiming for a weight: I’m going to aim for a body fat percentage.
Goal: Reduce body weight percentage down to 20%
Have a baby
Not really but I want Mel to read this and get freaked out for a second. Even though we’ve only been dating 6 months we already have plans (and plane tickets) for the next 6 months so it’s been a recurring joke that I push the relationship forward too much for her sometimes.
Goal: Continue messing with Mel in the future
I want to bring a bit more silliness into my life. Try to introduce that in my day to day interaction. Maybe that’s how Improv pervades my life or something. But I’m not sure how to do that. My friend brought up the 5 stages of enlightenment (or something like that): Everyone Sucks, I suck, I’m awesome, we’re awesome, everything is awesome. The overall goal will be to have an improv everywhere style moment. Something that brings silliness into either my life or public life or something more than that. Not clear how that’ll work but we’ll see.
Goal: 10% more silly
I’m going to try this one again. I think it’s achievable now that I have my audio book habit. So far I’ve gotten 1 down in this year so far.
Goal: 24 books in a year