What a whirlwind we’ve been on! I remember trying to decide what I wanted to do for my learning project. It was a stressful time because I wanted to pick something that would be useful to me in the future… My top ideas were 1) Learn to macramé, 2) Learn to play guitar, or 3) Learn to take better photos. My decision was to learn to play guitar, and off I went!
Post #1: Baseline
In my first post (link above), I discussed where I was starting out with guitar, and what I wanted to accomplish in the next seven weeks. Essentially I decided that I wanted to expand my skills by learning to finger pick, and I discussed how I planned to do so. I knew already that YouTube would be a great resource for me, since it’s known to have “how to” videos, frequently.
Post #2: Week 2 Guitar Post
My second was a bit deeper. I showed a YouTube videos of where I was with guitar before learning to finger pick, and a video of me learning to finger pick. Both videos I uploaded to YouTube, and I sourced the song I was learning, “Hey Mama Wolf” by Devendra Banhart. I also explained in this post that I was learning to read “tabs” which is how someone learns to pick along to a song. This was new to me but it got better with practice!
Post #3: How To Read Tabs
Things began to pick up and I added two audio files of my finger picking to the song mentioned above.
The audio files took me for a loop, and I explained how I eventually overcame this hardship in my post… To me this was a huge learning opportunity and I even ended up asking for help in our class’s Google Community. Lastly, I shared a YouTube resource I found on a classmate’s blog. The video was about reading and playing tabs for guitar, perfect for me!
Post #4: The Switch Up
This is where things get a bit wishy washy… It’s now mid semester and I’ve began to feel like learning guitar on the daily is a chore. I decided to switch my learning project to something that I’m already doing on the regular (and working on) to save myself some time and stress. I decided to switch to running. In this post I explain my reasoning for switching. I really liked learning from YouTube because I can pause and play the video whenever I want. However, the time it took to get results from guitar playing was hard on my schedule.
My new plan was to showcase my learning journey with running through documenting my progress with the Nike Run App. This worked a lot better with my schedule since the app schedules the runs for you. I had already been working with the app for a couple weeks when I started documenting and my goal was to run a half marathon by September.
Post #5: The Running App
In this post I go over what I love and what I’d improve about the Nike Running App that I’m using to train with. I also go over some of my stats, and how to generally use the app. Every week the app has the user push themselves in either distance, time, or speed… Sometimes a mix of a few!
Post #6: Three Things to Help You Move Faster
In this post I talk about three habits I’ve developed that I believe have helped me be a better runner. The three things are: yoga, meditation, and nutrition. In this post I explain how I got involved with yoga and how it’s become part of my morning routine on the daily. This helps me be a better runner because not only am I relaxed physically, I have time to notice if my body is hurting.
I also go over two applications I use to help with running: Headspace, a meditation app, and My Fitness Pal, an app for nutrition. I have a subscription to the Headspace app and I try to use it regularly. This helps me stay calm and focused during runs, and the Headspace team will even guided runs through the Nike Run App. My fitness pal is a great resource for staying healthy while active, as I’ve reviewed in the above blog. The only thing I’d change about the app is it’s tendency to applaud weight loss and gain… I’d rather an app that simply records data and makes recommendation for better health.
The resources I’d used for this blog post were websites, screen shots, hyperlinks, and a time-lapse video of me doing yoga!
Post #7: Progress Post – I Failed Last Week
This was my last post on my learning project. I made a progress post to explain how I attempted a long run and didn’t complete the goal… However, I bounced right back the week after and I was stronger than ever! For this post I used screen shots/screen casts from the Nike Run App to show my progress, as well as hyperlinks to the resources I’m referencing. At the very end I added a blurb about how I chose my running shoes and included many resources on how others could pick theres!
How Far I’ve Come…
I do not regret switching from guitar to running. I’ll remember this moment when I have students do inquiry based learning/independent study with me in the future… You need to be interested in what you’re learning about! I think that’s the biggest reason why I had a hard time making space for guitar in my life, I was already very focused on running.
I’m sad that I’m not required to write blogs anymore, since last week was my official mid-training week! 11 weeks down, 11 weeks to go until race day!
It’s been going by really fast, and I don’t think I’ve ever committed to an app like this so well before! However, it’s mostly uphill from now on — the runs are getting longer, and the app is expecting more speed. I’m up for the challenge!
I’ve learnt a lot about how to use resources in blogs like videos, YouTube, pictures, screen shots, screen casts, links, and audio recordings. It’s been pretty fun exploring these methods of documenting and sharing! If I were to write a few more blog posts, my posts would be about: The history of women running marathons, what I eat on a regular basis being a non-meat eating runner, and a progress report since the half-way point! I also would have liked to join a Twitter chat on running before ending this project, Twitter chats are a great way to broaden a person’s PLN.
Thanks for following along with my learning project, I hope that you learnt something, too!