Jump to content


  • Content count

  • Joined

  • Last visited

About Starkess

  • Rank
    so totally yay
  • Birthday 09/07/1987

Contact Methods

  • AIM
  • Website URL
  • ICQ

Profile Information

  • Gender
  • Location
    Chicago, IL

Previous Fields

  • Name

Recent Profile Visitors

11,988 profile views
  1. Running against the wind is the worst. Hills suck, but at least you can see the top and mentally it's like "okay this is a hill, it's hard, let's adjust" but wind just makes everything harder, makes it colder, and is unpredictable and highly variable. And when running near a beach (or other loose particulate) it can sting your skin and eyes. Boo wind. Also really jealous of your numbers if a 17 km run at 5 min/km is disappointing for you! Yesterday I did 17.7 km at ~6:20 min/km (had to google those conversions) and that's pretty good for me!
  2. Starkess

    Careerchat IV

    My advice would be to take the job if you get an offer. If things get worse, it could be a lot harder to find work, and you'll be glad to have it. But maybe negotiate a start date pushed back by a couple of weeks? Collect unemployment in the meantime and keep yourself distanced. Unless this is a position you could start remotely?
  3. Starkess

    First Quarter 2020 Reading

    Really enjoying my re-read of Leviathan Wakes. I've read books 1-6 of the Expanse, most of those 2x, and LW is still my favorite. In no small part because Miller is my favorite character of the series. It's funny reading the books now with some of the aesthetic of the show in my head. For example, I always (wrongly) pictured Holden as blond, but now I can conjure up his deathly-pale-and-dark look. Naomi in my head looks nothing like show!Naomi though. She just ain't tall enough!! Listening to The Hallowed Hunt continues. I'm enjoying it quite a lot. Dying to know what sort of bittersweet ending she has up her sleeve. Still hate the narrator, though.
  4. Okay, thanks for the input everyone! I think for now I'll stick with my perceived exertion standards, but maybe when I have some time to do a stress test to see my max HR I can re-calibrate the zones and they'll be more helpful.
  5. Does anyone here use heart rate training for running? It comes up a lot on the running subreddit. My chest strap broke a couple years back and I never replaced it, but I do have a Garmin watch with wrist HR. According to that, I'm running way too high in zone. Like yesterday I went for an easy 65-minute run, and I spent about 50/50 between Zone 3 and 4. My understanding for HR training is that Zone 2 should be the goal for an easy run. But the run certainly felt easy, and the pace was pretty slow. Honestly I think even walking would put me in Zone 2. My guess is that the default ranges used on my Garmin aren't properly calibrated for me? Or am I really just using too much effort? ETA: Here is the chart for HR zones from Garmin: Zone % of Maximum Heart Rate Perceived Exertion Benefits 1 50–60% Relaxed, easy pace, rhythmic breathing Beginning-level aerobic training, reduces stress 2 60–70% Comfortable pace, slightly deeper breathing, conversation possible Basic cardiovascular training, good recovery pace 3 70–80% Moderate pace, more difficult to hold conversation Improved aerobic capacity, optimal cardiovascular training 4 80–90% Fast pace and a bit uncomfortable, breathing forceful Improved anaerobic capacity and threshold, improved speed 5 90–100% Sprinting pace, unsustainable for long period of time, labored breathing Anaerobic and muscular endurance, increased power
  6. I went to the gym on Friday and my friends were all shocked at my risky behavior. Tomorrow is a weights day again for me and debating if I should go to the gym or not. I don't have any weights at home, although I do have a few resistance bands, so trying to get a strength exercise in at home is not great at all. And I usually go to the gym not at peak, although it is still always a little busy. The undergrads are mostly gone now, so maybe it'll be even less busy. If I wash my hands before and after and wipe down equipment, I think it's probably fine, but things are getting so weird around here that it's hard to know if that's a really crazy decision or not. I'm already working from home and social distancing, so the gym and grocery store would be my only potential contacts. At least running is still okay. I've been running slow AF lately, but still keeping up the mileage (3x per week, getting in about 20-25 miles) so I think that's good. I'm planning to do a 10k and a half this summer, so I want to have a good base to start a training plan from. I'd like to break 2 hours for the half. I've done it before, but that was a couple years ago before my long break with the heel injuries, so I'm not sure how in reach it is. That's a 9:09 min/mi pace and that feels hard right now when I try to get that on my pace runs.
  7. Starkess

    First Quarter 2020 Reading

    I read Longitude a long time ago (college I think) and remembered really enjoying it. I believe it was a recommendation from one of my seamanship classes. I later also read Planets by the same author and liked it--still have it on my shelf. Although of course I am more interested in planets than most people! I'm a bit into The Hallowed Hunt, book 3 of the World of the Five Gods by Lois McMaster Bujold. I had no idea what to expect, and good thing I had no expectations because I'm sure this wasn't it, but I am enjoying it so far. Unfortunately, I am not enjoying the narrator very much. The tone she uses when not voicing characters drives me a little nuts.
  8. Starkess

    First Quarter 2020 Reading

    On the audiobook side, I finished Sleeping Giants, it was really good so I'll definitely be continuing on with the series. But first I'm going back to Chalion to listen to The Hallowed Hunt. As far as reading, I'm about to start my re-read of Leviathan Wakes.
  9. My university is canceling study abroad programs, no events >100 people, and encouraging social distancing. Classes not canceled (well classes are done for the quarter, so it's basically exams over the next week and a half, then spring break) and no mandatory work from home. My advisor is asking if I'd prefer to Skype for our weekly meeting tomorrow, so I think some level of fear is setting in around here. Governor just announced some new cases today, but we're still only at I think 18 for the Chicago area and none near my neighborhood. I expect that's massively underreported, but even so, not panic-inducing. Personally my routine hasn't changed much, but then again I don't tend to go out a ton anyway. I would probably re-think going to the movies or a show, but I've gone to the store basically every day and still planning to go into my office (which I share with one other person) to work. My boyfriend just left to travel back to Australia, and I am a little concerned for him because he'll be going through O'Hare, LAX, and Sydney airports with an immune system suppressed from stress and lack of sleep. But it's still only a minor concern. My real concerns are not personal but societal. Even if I and those I know are relatively unscathed, people are already dying, many more people will be in a lot of pain and more deaths, and the economy taking a hit will cause many more adverse effects. I do hope the US government can get some sort of better response mustered to this ASAP.
  10. Starkess

    First Quarter 2020 Reading

    Also the Liveships trilogy is written in a different perspective--the Fitz books are all in first person, whereas the Liveships is a multi-POV third person series. The first Farseer trilogy is quite possibly my favorite thing I've ever read. It's so so good. (The rest of the series is excellent, but not quite the same. I did not care for the Fool as much as Hobb clearly does.) I finished up reading Clarke's 2001: A Space Odyssey this week. I watched the movie a couple months ago and it was bonkers so I thought I'd try the book out. I definitely enjoyed it more than the movie (I was not a big fan on the more extended, bizarro parts of the movie), although it's a fairly unemotional tome for some very huge events. I also preferred the HAL sequence in the movie, but the book's ape sequence, moon, and final sequence were much better. I've gotten close to finishing Sleeping Giants. I'm really enjoying it, although I'm a bit puzzled about where it's going to end. I know it's a series, and there were a couple points already that felt like a natural stopping point in the story. Got a long run coming up on Thursday, so hopefully I'll finish it then. I've already got the next one checked out.
  11. Starkess

    Boarders Writing a Novel Part 15

    Thanks everyone. I'll keep on keeping on!
  12. Starkess

    Boarders Writing a Novel Part 15

    Terribly. Lots of new rejections, no new requests, I'm firmly convinced I'm a trash writer who will never be published. Actually, worse, I'm firmly convinced I'm an *okay* writer but not capable of making the jump to a good writer. But, you know, that's writing. Keep on keeping on.
  13. Starkess

    First Quarter 2020 Reading

    I finished The Light of All That Falls, the final book in the Licanius trilogy by James Islington. I agree with the poster upthread who found the series whelming. The first book was really fantastic, and enough to make up for its flaws, but books 2 and 3 really fell short. As much as I hate to say it, because I like short series, I think perhaps this shouldn't have been a trilogy. Not a terrible read, but nothing outstanding either. I'll keep an eye out for future works by the author though--this was his first series and so I'd expect improvement. I also finished The Paladin of Souls audiobook by Lois McMaster Bujold. I didn't love it *quite* as much as the first book, but it was overall really excellent. I liked Ista as a side character in the first book, and as a protagonist she is excellent. Looking forward to continuing this series. I've recently started listening to Sleeping Giants by Sylvain Neuvel. It's a book that lends itself well to audio, as (at least so far) it has been nothing but transcripts of interviews between characters (who are read by different narrators). I'm enjoying it! I think I'll also start my re-read of The Expanse, as I believe the final book is expected out this year. I've read books 1-6 already, but not 7&8, so I'm looking forward to getting to those.
  14. Starkess

    First Quarter 2020 Reading

    I finally started The Light of All That Falls, the third book in the Licanius Trilogy. I've had it queued up for a couple weeks but been kind of eh about starting it since I found book 2 rather a slog. Book 3 has been a definite improvement, including a very helpful recap of the series at the beginning that I SWEAR included info that was never adequately explained in book 2. Not sure if it was an author retcon or I had just glazed over it, but it's a simple enough concept and one that I noticed immediately when it was referred to in-text by characters in this volume. I'm also about 60% of the way through the audiobook of Paladin of Souls by Lois McMaster Bujold. I am really enjoying this quite a lot, although not sure if it's better than the first book. I do like this narrator better than the first book's (who was prone to more acting than I like in an audiobook), so that's nice. I'm about to head out on a long run today and I'm really looking forward to spending another couple hours with it!
  15. Starkess

    Exercise & Fitness: Summer Bodies (TBD)

    I have decided to not focus on losing weight and just instead focus on my workouts. I feel a little sad at giving up my dream of getting back to my goal weight (which I have had and maintained for a couple years in the past, so I know it's not *impossible*, just difficult), but also relieved after almost 2 years of stop-and-go progress. Of course I immediately gained like 2 pounds so now I'm above even my new target weight, but I am just going to keep eating at maintenance for at least a few weeks and see what happens.