Level Up Your Life: Origin Story

2020 began with the best of intentions but then bushfires, floods and global pandemics happened …

I turned 35 last week. And now, here I am. Still sitting in the dark waiting for the storms to pass…

In my darkness I’m reading Steve Kamb’s ‘Level Up Your Life’, so in the spirit of active participation, here’s my origin story:

Charlie lived a humble existence as a nerdy Complaints & Resolutions Specialist. Like other supernova origin stories, the hero struggled with being human, notably taking care of herself and lacking enthusiasm, motivation and direction. However, as the prophecies of old foretold, change was coming. Thanks to the deep breath of inspiration, self-discipline and the amazing tutelage of the ridiculously good-looking, clever, and modest mentor Steve, our hero transformed, creating AlwaysChum to protect the lives of her loved ones. Although our hero lives out an ordinary life by day, at night she is an absolute badarse, known for her epic eye for design, amateur hiking adventures, and one time even swam with dolphins.

How can you change the world if you can’t change yourself?

Credit: Bitmoji


Edited version of a speech made by Arya Stark in GOT.

Arya is a bad ass! Anyone who watches Game of Thrones knows this. From a young age this little warrior stuck her finger up at the social expectations, instead turned and faced the trials and troubles of the world, with one attitude: Not today!

This image yoinked from Elle, completely encapsulates the warrior princess that is Arya. Having just watched the latest episode I am so proud of her whilst being completely and utterly traumatised. She is a modern day hero for all young females.

So tomorrow, when I don’t want to wake up and do my work out, I will ask myself WWASD?

To the Daily Log

It was an active Monday. I managed to crawl from the bed around 5am and get one set of strength training in, with my new weight. I felt the burn. Having left the house early, I power walked to the highway, snoozed 20min on the tram, before disembarking and powering my along Collins Street. The FitBit is still out of action and my iPhone doesn’t want to play, but I estimate it to be about 5,000 steps. My post work walk was cancelled due to obvious reasons. If not obvious, look above.

Since 11am AEST (when it aired in the U.S.) I have avoided social media like the plague. It made for a very long commute home. On the plus side, my Apple TV / AirPlay decided to work today, so we got the wide screen experience.

The stress, anxiety and heart wrenching anticipation called for Macca’s. So I indulged in a burger… and justified to myself, it was okay because it was grilled. I was very hungry also. Breakfast had been the Chia Pod, and Lunch a Weekend Warrior from Boost. So despite being naughty I was well within the calorie targets, just not on par with the Paleo lifestyle.

Tomorrow Goals

Grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change. Tomorrow will be the longest day, work then uni, then home to study. Food goals remain the same, chia pod for breakfast, boost juice for lunch and dinner will be a cheeky Nandos or super food salad from the salad bar if it is still open when I leave the office. Steps goals will be achieved as I’ll be walking from SouthWest corner of the CBD to the NorthEast corner.


Daily Log

When my eyes opened this morning I was curled in a ball all snug and warm. The beeping of the Woolworths van (sorry neighbours) roused the street. Not longer after the sun came up and I made a mediocre attempt to stretch out the night before. By 8am I was back in bed with a cup of tea scrolling through Youtube. It was the rational thing to do on such a cold Autumn morning.

At 9am I was dressed and power walking up the hill to the post office. The sun was out, and the neighbourhood was buzzing. I’d recently discovered Luke Comb’s Beautiful Crazy and have been playing on a loop most of the week. Felt a moment of serenity and joy to be outside, to be able to acknowledge the majesty of this country.

My enthusiasm for the day was boosted by the lack of queues in the post office. The lady took my licence and scurried into the back. When she returned she dropped my parcel on the desk and I couldn’t help notice the plethora of warning labels: heavy, handle with care. *gulp*

It wasn’t that bad though, only 6kg. My arms didn’t start burning until I’d reached the end of my street #saved. As I clambered through the front door I collapsed onto the couch and stretched out the weary arms. I also place my new 6kg kettle bell by my bedroom door ready for the workout… that never came.

Bit of fail most of today. Sat on the couch surfing the internet. I think a little studying was done, or there was at least some consideration and tabs opened.

Weekend grub was achieved. I now have three meals of chicken mince, cabbage, and sweet potato/pumpkin mash. Tastes better than it sounds, and was the perfect indulgence on a fresh afternoon.

Winter is coming. I need to face the fact. But I’m quite in denial. Motivation is going to get harder before it gets easier.

Finding the Big WHY

I’m tired of being tired, and struggling for energy. I’m happiest when I’m out there in the world connecting with other humans. So I’ve joined the Nerd Academy to give myself a chance to breathe, to be alive, and to belong again.

Setting Goals

Do or do not, there is no try.


One of the first challenges of the Nerd Academy is developing my journey.

So I will become a person:

  • who trains at least three times a week
  • will get eight hours of sleep a night
  • will cook and eat home made meals at least three times a week

My Epic Quest

Travel to Osaka, Japan is the dream. It’s the most scary thing I could do because it so far from the reality I live in. To get there, I need time, money, courage, and language skills. So the tiny wins will be saving $400 per month, finding a flexible job/career and rejuvenating my DuoLingo access.

Tomorrows Goals

Sunday, the day of rest. But not for me. I’ll awake at dawn and do a 30 minute work out. I will then shower, dress and practice my Japanese. Breakfast will be a bowl of Alpen, followed by a morning walk along the creek. When I return I shall get my head stuck into studying. I have so much work to do and time is running out. Lunch and Dinner will be the left overs from today. Depending on the progress of my studying, I might squeeze in a ice skating session with the housemate.