Every year I review my habits, exercise, and projects for the previous year.
- Read (part of) a book. Finished fifty-two of them in total. Wrote up my top picks for the year.
- Anki cards. Another year of the same geography and element cards. This is maybe three cards a day.
- Gratitude journal. I record both things I did well, and things that brought me joy.
- Prehab. Bare minimum stretching and exercises for my back.
In addition I also tracked the following but didn’t commit to any frequency:
- Set of pull-ups. Ended up being mostly daily, with occasional rest days. Started the year at set of three, increasing to eight currently.
- Set of push-ups. Same frequency as pull-ups. Usually 15-25.
- Alcohol-free day. I drank about once a month for the first half of the year, once a week for the back half and a bit less than every other day for December (mostly courtesy of Carwyn Cellars Canvent…).
This coming year is going to look fairly similar I think, I’m not feeling the need to change much.
I use and recommend Loop Habit Tracker and Gratitudes Journal to keep track of things.
Despite some minor setbacks and very little racing, It was a great year for running. I continued my focus on longer trail events, with a really solid training block to start the year. This lead to a PR for 50k at Warburton Trail Fest in March on the way to 3rd place in the multi-day event. Three weeks later I ran my first 100K as part of the Buffalo Stampede Ultra Grand Slam multi-day event. It felt strong, though following it up with a 42K the day after was too much and I needed six weeks of virtually no running afterwards to rehab my right knee. That was followed by a month of base building before two massive social trips: first to Hawaii to backpack the Nā Pali coast, then a running tour through the alps from Switzerland to France.
Was feeling strong coming home, but fell sick three times over the next few months before discovering (and having removed) an infected tooth, all of which took at least a week each out of training.
As a result I bailed on both Hume & Hovell 50K and Surf Coast 100K, but I did manage to be healthy enough for a decent crack at 4peaks at the start of November.
December was a solid month, including double workout weeks with 40k+ long runs in the back half. I brought in the New Year with Jodie on a hiking trip in Tasmania.
For the whole year I traversed 3,050K, my most ever, while climbing nearly 80K, fully double my previous max. Hopefully I can keep momentum into Hut2Hut 100K mid-February.
I often ran with Hunter Athletics Tuesday mornings around Olympic Park, Studley Park Run Club around the Yarra trail Thursday evenings, and Dandenong Trail Runners on Sunday. I continued to be coached by Tim from the Distance Collective.
I restarted my bouldering gym membership in July but never got a consistent schedule going. I’m not intending to train this but hope to keep going socially this year.
I nearly cemented a twice-a-week strength habit going to support my running, but it was tough to keep restarting bigger lifts every time I got sick. Did a little bit better with easier prehab work, but in general want to try and do better here in 2024. That said, I’ve never previously been able to make anything stick alongside running, so I’m still happy with a partial success this year.
We got a table tennis table at work, and a few of us went along to a group training at MSAC a couple of times. I really enjoyed this but I’m not going to make time for it in addition to everything else.
I did a handful of introductory BJJ classes just so I could know what everyone else was talking about. Again, not going to make time for another sport properly though.
- Created a solver for Potionomics recipes, and gave a lightning talk about it.
- Created sternbot, a scraper for Stern Insider to create a slack leaderboard and achievements tracker for our Godzilla pinball machine at work. (Achieved a 1B+ score on the machine as well.)
- Added a running section to this site.
- Completed Exotic Industries, Freight Forwarding, and Krastorio 2 modpacks for Factorio and wrote up reviews for each.
- Enjoyed a full run of Midnight Suns, a brilliant tactics game trapped in a AAA shell.
- Played a lot of Legends of Runeterra PvE, a AAA deck builder.
- After trying and failing to get into Diablo IV, levelled a Demolitionist/Inquisitor in Grim Dawn instead to finish Ultimate difficultly for the first time.
Upgraded graphics card to a from an NVIDIA GTX 1070 to a 4070ti primarily for Age of Wonders 4, which I ended up not playing much. I also enjoyed Potionomics and Per Aspera.
Jodie and I got into crosswords this year. Mostly from NYT, with a sprinkling of Washington Post. In the last few months Saturday Quiz Time started publishing a weekly US-style crossword with Australian clues, which has been really fun. This year I want to start trying NYT Thursday & Friday puzzles more consistently.
Gave up trombone in May. With my back fixed, all my primary hobbies came back and I was no longer making time for it. I didn’t play piano much, but learned a few easy things: Isn’t She Lovely, Hymn to Freedom, and the victory jingle from when you finish a NYT crossword.
I saw a few shows:
- Plini, supported by Protest The Hero. I don’t really go to live music anymore, but I couldn’t pass up opportunity to see two of my favourite bands live.
- Don Quixote by the Australian Ballet.
- I Shall Have A Good Think When Everyone Goes Home, a stand up set from Daniel Kitson.
- Banff Mountain film festival
- Candle light ballet at Collingwood Town Hall.
- & Juliet, a really fun musical.
- MSO performing Rachmaninov and Shostakovich, two of my favourite composers.
- Constellations, and excellent play with repeating scenes done in different ways. Creative and memorable.
I spoke on panels at Southstart in Adelaide and Intersekt in Melbourne, and attended SXSW in Sydney.
I fasted for a day of Ramadan.
I grew a beard.