Turning HabitRPG Into A Workout Tracker

HabitRPG is one of the cornerstones upon which I’ve built my system of productivity. Every day, I use it to track my habits.

It’s been incredibly helpful in motivating me to drink more water, read daily, take vitamins, and do a lot of other things. However, I’ve now taken my use of HabitRPG a step further. Now, it’s my workout tracker as well.

When I started using the app, I simply created a daily habit called, “Hit the gym.” Having this in my Dailies worked well for a while, but eventually it stopped being as effective as I’d like it to be. To explain why, I should probably tell you a bit how HabitRPG works first.

Basically, HabitRPG splits your obligations into three categories:

  1. Habits – things you either want to do more or less of. These have no due date or time constraints.
  2. Dailies – habits you want to practice every single day.
  3. To-Do’s – one-off tasks. I use Todoist for these, so this column is always empty for me.

When you check off any of your Habits, Dailies, or To-do’s, your character will earn experience and gold. Fail to do Dailies and you’ll lose health. From there, it’s much like any other RPG – you can form parties, go on quests, find treasure, buy gear, etc. Read More…

Kicking A Soda/Energy Drink Habit: A Method That Actually Works

“Dude, are you actually buying 18 different energy drinks right now?”

My friend looked down at my shopping basket with a expression torn between awe and disgust. It was filled with a sampling of every drink the grocery store had to offer – every big brand offering, and all the weird indie ones that were probably brewed in some dude’s basement and snuck onto the shelf in the middle of the night.

“Yep. I want to taste-test all of them.”

This scene reveals the depths of an addiction to energy drinks that gripped me for much of college. It wasn’t usually this bad, but I’d estimate that I spent probably 60% of my days in college thoroughly dependent on the stuff.

The thing is, I knew I was essentially drinking poison. I grew up with parents that taught me healthy habits and forced me to stay active. I spent most of my second semester in college posting on bodybuilding forums and doing nutrition research.

I knew I was slowly killing myself. But somehow, each time, I’d rationalize the current can. This will be the last one. I’ll quit tomorrow. I didn’t have one yesterday. I really need to stay up and finish this coding assignment. Read More…

This Is How We Get Fat

10:34 PM: “Tomorrow’s the day. I’m going to get up early and hit the gym. I’ll make eggs with veggies instead of eating cereal. I’m gonna stop eating out. I have to. I can’t let myself become like everyone else around me. I’m not going to turn into the typical overweight adult. I’ll stay fit and youthful forever.”

11:41 PM: “There’s a deal for one of the games on my Steam wishlist. I think I’ll buy it and play for a while before I go to bed.”

1:39 AM: “Crap, looks like I stayed up a bit too late. Well, time to go to bed – I’ll just deal with a little less sleep tomorrow. I really want to start on my plans to get healthy in the morning.”

7:00 AM: “Oh no, it’s my alarm – but I feel like I just went to bed like 20 minutes ago! I can’t get up now…. it’s OK. My first class isn’t until 10:00. I’ll just sleep a little longer.”

8:00 AM: “Ugghh my legs feel so warm; I just don’t want to move them. 15 more minutes.”

8:15 AM: “Alright, I guess I’ll get up. I’ve got to get going on my goals. I’ll just my email real quick before I pop over to the gym.” Read More…

Yes, You CAN Afford Healthy Food In College

“I want to eat better food, but I just can’t afford it dude.”

I hear this one a lot. A lot of students think they can’t eat healthy in college because it’s too expensive.

In a way, this could be true. When you look at a lot of paleo dieting guidelines, you read things like:

  • “Buy only grass-finished beef from a local supplier.”
  • “Only eat wild-caught fish. Farmed fish will melt your insides and you’ll never find true love.”
  • “All of your produce needs to be organic.”
  • “If you’re going to eat butter, it has to be grass-fed butter that you buy from an Amish farm in person.”
  • “Buy Bazooka-Proof coffee dude, it’s made in Chili and has 800% less toxins than Starbucks.”

If you’re dead set on following all of this advice, then heck yes it’s going to get expensive! Fresh-caught fish and grass-fed beef alone would obliterate anything you make working a part-time job in no time.

However, none of these things are absolutely necessary to be healthy. Read More…

Everyone In Japan Is Thin And Beautiful (And So Can You!)

Raise your hand if you think it’s ridiculous that we even have the concept of “The Freshman Fifteen“. Ok, now if you’re raising your hand, you should probably put it down because there’s no reason to sit at your computer and raise your hand.

Plus, I found it difficult to keep typing with one hand in the air.

It is ridiculous, though. The fact that so many of us go to college and end up gaining a bunch of unnecessary weight is just sad. However, it happens to way too many people. Our society is so based around a sugar-heavy, carb-heavy diet and a sedentary lifestyle that it’s become commonplace to get fat after high school.

But what if we could fix this problem? What if there was a way to fix it that didn’t involve going on some rigid, radical diet or a overly complicated exercise program?

Well, that fix exists, and I only had to travel 8,000 miles to find out what it is. Read More…

Guest Post: 5 Brain-Amping Foods That Are Like Edible Rocket Fuel

This is a guest post by University of Tampa journalism student Kirby Jay.

Exhaustion is inevitable in college. Between the part-time jobs, late nights outs, participation in clubs and organizations, and the piles of preserved schoolwork that we knock out the night before the due date, (not to mention efforts to run every day) there is no room to store energy.

This forces students to turn to unnatural stimulants such as Adderall and Ritalin, even when they are not prescribed to these medications. These illegal drug purchases can lead to addiction, irreparable health damage, and is a total waste of your money.

Many students do not realize that food was created to do the same brain-boosting job! To keep your brain operating at maximum capacity in order to get your work done, stay up late, and remember the important appointment you have scheduled with your advisor the following day, you must consume the best, natural brain food possible. Here are five easily accessible foods on college campuses that will give your brain the boost you need! Read More…

Better Health, More Focus, Mind Powers… My Vegan Diet Experiment

Near the end of January, some friends and I watched Fat, Sick, and Nearly Dead, a documentary about a man’s ambition to juice fast for sixty days. Now, I have no desire to lose weight, so I was not inspired to juice fast. I need my food.

However, I did take note that Joe was eating a lot more fruits and vegetables than me. In fact, I’m pretty sure my main source of plant intake was applesauce, which, while delicious, is definitely not going to give me all of the plant-based nutrients I need to be at optimum health.

But where would I start? Being a meat, bread, and potato eater for twenty-one years, how would I best find the fruits and vegetables I liked, and truly bring change to my diet?

Simple: by forcing myself to eat the complete opposite of everything I had eaten before. To do this, I decided that I would try and follow a vegan diet for an entire month.

Read More…

Got Guts? Join Us And Run Every Day Until The End Of The Semester

Right as March was ending, I saw my friend Bud Hennekes tweet this out:

Since my own workout habits had been slipping, I decided to join him. I’m happy to report that we’ve both gone nine straight days running without a single skip!

The coolest part, however, is that other people joined. We now have a group of about six people on Twitter who are all running every day. Each of us is driven by the motivation everyone else contributes, and to date no one has skipped to my knowledge.

So today this thought popped into my head:

“Why not get others involved?”

And that’s exactly what I want to do now! Read More…

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