One of my New Year resolutions was to keep in touch with more people.
I also need to clear out my contact list as there are lots of “old” and incomplete entries in my Google contacts list.
Ever the productivity geek I wanted to automate this. I ended up writing the following Google Apps Script:
photo credit: Andrew Coulter Enright
If like me your Outlook calendar can get a bit hectic and others can add meetings to your calendar sometimes you end up simply “reacting” to your schedule and jumping from one appointment to the next on “autopilot”. It’s at times like these that Outlook’s ability to create a reminder can save your dignity.
However, sometimes the meeting organiser does not set a reminder. I have created an Outlook macro that will look for incoming meeting requests, without a reminder set and give you the option to set a reminder.
Posted in Microsoft, Misc, Office, Productivity, Technology, Work
Tagged Appointment, Macro, Microsoft, Office, Outlook, Productivity, Reminder
Well – that’s my final marathon of the year done and what a way to end it. Fantastic location, fantastic people/support, fantastic weather (cold and dry) and a personal best by over 14 minutes!
You can review my marathon stats here.
The stats make interesting reading (if your into stats or are a runner).
It shows how my pace per mile has changed since my first marathon and also how Chester compared with Dublin (4 weeks apart). It also finally drummed it into me that starting slow DOES enable you to hold a more consistent pace for longer.
I’m a huge fan of keeping my inbox empty, but not very good and keeping it that way.
I’m becoming more interested in the “Quantified Self” concept i.e. you can only fix things that you can measure.
The obvious answer is to monitor what my GMail inbox looks like on a daily basis. Continue reading
As you should know by know my plan for the year was to run four marathons, one in each of Wales, Scotland, England and Ireland for MND Scotland.
The start of October saw the English leg with the Chester marathon.
Posted in Fitness, Fundraising, MND, Marathon, Me, Motor Neuron Disease, Ross, Running
Tagged Chester, marathon, mndscotland, running
One of my main productivity “sinks” is continually monitoring Outlook to see if any mails have arrived.
I have a rule set up that notifies me if an “important” email lands but for this to run, outlook needs to be running (minimised of course). I can’t resist the temptation to just “have a peek” outside my first thing in the morning, last thing at night email window.
To get around this I want to be “discouraged” from opening Outlook.
To implement this I have used Antonio Franca’s fantastic WinTrigger AutoHotkey script.
I have just had to place a textbox object onto 17 worksheets within the same excel workbook, each text box containing the same commentary text. Type it once and then copy the text box and paste, job done.
Of course as soon as I have finished it I spot my typo and realise I will have to do it all again.
Only NOW do I slow down and think (OK I Google it) of the proper way to do it.
When you create a text box, rather than typing the text into the text box as I have been doing for years, with the text box selected you can type into the formula bar. In my case I put in the formula “=Metadata!B2″. This means that the textbox will display whatever I type into cell B2 on my “Metadata” worksheet.
Now I edit the textboxes I have created to reference the formula and in the future if the text needs to change, I change it in Metadata!B2 and the new text appears in all of the textboxes that refer to it!
NOTE: The text displayed in a formula driven text box is limited to 256 characters.
My worst race ever.
Prior to the 2012 Edinburgh Marathon I have only ever not finished one race before – a Strathclyde parkrun when I pulled my hamstring.
Bearing in mind I did the Great Welsh Marathon last month – I was just doing some “easy” runs as I “know” I can “do” a marathon so I was just treating this period as an extended taper/recovery period.
On Sunday the day was very sunny and hot.
I had multiple applications of factor 50 sunscreen – been upping my hydration in the days before, the only thing I did differently was grabbing a tuna sandwich rather than my usual porridge.
My plan was to run 12:00 miles in the hope of beating my PB of 05:42.
I knew I’d have to revert to a run walk strategy from about mile 19ish but I should have enough in the tank for about a 05:30 finish.
I knew I would start way faster than my planned pace so for the first three miles it was a case of forcing myself to slow from 10:00 to 11:00 until I settled at a comfortable 11:30 pace.
I started feeling a bit “wobbly” at about 9 1/2 miles so I had a walking break, a gel and some water.
This was fine until mile 10 when I “lost” my breakfast – not exactly lost – I knew EXACTLY where it was !
More water and gel and I soldiered on with a walk/jog until mile 12 (15:00+ mins per mile) when I knew if at this point I was having to play mental games to force a jog – there was no way I could continue.
After 20 minutes sitting by the roadside – thanks to everyone who took the time to check I was OK – I started the long slow walk back to the start.
I have two more marathons in the plan – Chester 7th October and Dublin 29th October so hopefully the heat will not be as big a debilitating factor.
I still “owe” a Scottish marathon from my 4 marathon plan – I have an inkling as to how to address this – stay tuned for more info!
This year my fund-raising for MND Scotland involves running four marathons in Wales (Llanelli), Scotland (Edinburgh), England (Chester) and Ireland (Dublin).
Last weekend saw the first of these.
Posted in Family, Fitness, Fundraising, MND, Marathon, Me, Motor Neuron Disease, Ross, Running
Tagged Fundraising, marathon, mndscotland, running
As you will have seen from my previous posts, I was growing a mustache for MND Scotland
All it would have taken is £10 / day for me to keep the ‘tache.