As I sit here at a desk at the Hotel Boulderado in Boulder, Colorado for work, I am realizing that the last few weeks have been pretty crazy with work, politics, and committing to my new goal of writing at least 500 words a day. I’ve been using Toggl to do some time tracking and have found it reasonably easy to use to track where my time goes. It has been a decent exercise, but I’ve been pretty forgetful in starting the timer some times and have definitely missed timing some workout sessions.

Working Out

Working out has been decent. According to Toggl, I have spent 5 hours and 22 minutes working out so far this year. That equates to a bit less than I hoped, but I’m seeing strong strength improvements and continue to drop body fat percentage and can up the reps and weight. I did over 4000 russian kettlebell swings, countless push ups and can now struggle my way through 5 consecutive pull ups1.

Writing Words

I missed my goal of writing 500 words a day three times. Looking back I can blame this on my word count plugin not being 100% accurate, but I never wrote less than 400 words on any given day. I definitely averaged more than 500 words a day as a more accurate word count reveals I wrote approximately 20,193 (vs. 15,000 if I had just written 500). Time spent writing was about 31 hours and 21 minutes this month.

I wrote 3 posts at and wrote the rest here. That makes 3 posts on software development, 13 that were personal reflections, 5 on cars, 2 each on personal finance, productivity, and engineering management, and one each of general technology, creative writing, and politics.

A few takeaways:

  • I’m not that interesting2, so I probably can’t keep up the pace of personal reflection posts. This is a great outlet though and I am looking forward to writing my Codex Vitae and writing more at svenchen.com3
  • I love cars. I really do. It’s something I can’t get away from and this is an area I would love to focus more on in writing.
  • I enjoy writing about personal finance. This seems like a good area for potential book writing either this year or in 2018.
  • Creative writing is extremely fun for me, but it feels like a hobby rather than something I should take on as a legitimate project
  • Writing words is time consuming, which leads us to…
Writing Code

At the beginning of the year I set out to create and writing words seemed the most accessible way for me to create. As a software engineer the other most accessible way for me to create is to write code. I tried to set aside a week this month writing about code and writing code, but I failed miserably. I only spent 1 hour and 54 minutes writing code this month, and this statistic pains me to look at.

Given it is the end of January, it seems like a good time to reassess goals and priorities and writing code is definitely something that has not received nearly enough attention. I’ll be changing my creativity resolution to writing 500 words or committing 50 (non-work related) lines of code a day. Wish me luck!

  1. … and feel like I am totally weak doing them

  2. but you knew this.

  3. crap. i bought another domain.