Saturday, December 31, 2011

2011 is Ending...

And I'm effin' thankful. Many unpleasant moments have occurred and I'm ready for a new year. First, I had to end some friendships at the beginning of the year, which was a tough but necessary decision. I also let some other friendships go by the wayside unintentionally. I basically decided to focus on the quality, not the quantity, of friendships this year. That said, I've grown closer to a select few of my friends and I love that. I am thankful for that opportunity. :) Then, family problems took over a good portion of my non-work life and I spent a significant amount of time by myself. That's unusual for me because I'm an extrovert, but I really needed time to sort through everything that was happening. The whole year wasn't total crap though. I don't want to sound that negative. I started working a lot more weekends, because I just needed to put my energy into something productive. I did manage to finish my last research project, so hopefully that manuscript can be submitted when I return to work next week. I think I'm going to stick to a 5 chapter format for my thesis - intro, 3 research chapters, conclusions & future directions. I need to run that by my boss, but I don't know if the 4th research chapter is worth the effort to finish since we've basically admitted that it's likely not going to be published. Why do more experiments to make a more complete story on something that will just languish in my dissertation? I'd rather spend the time getting the final manuscript accepted, writing, applying for jobs, and preparing for my defense. I really need to get a postdoc position. I've been drafting some emails over the last week that I can send out on Monday. I've got to expand my search beyond California just to be safe, but I really hope to end up on West Coast.

After being borderline underweight last year, I definitely packed on the pounds this year. I was trying to gain only muscle, but also gained some fat. Yuck. So I'll be returning to the gym (after a long 3 weeks off!) with the intention of eating less sweets (the reason for my fatness, since I basically quit drinking this year), running more, and lifting bigger weights. My goal is not necessarily weight loss, but fat loss. I don't mind a certain weight range if the body fat percentage is low. Time to shed that little bit of chunk! I guess that's my only real resolution for the year. I'd like to accomplish a few other things, but they're not really resolutions.

I'm also hoping to get some time off between finishing my PhD and starting a postdoc position, so I can spend some time with my family before relocating. I mean, how could you not want to spend time with these guys? My family wants me to move closer to home... I'm not really interested in moving back to the Tampa area right now, but there are small pharmaceutical companies that could be potential employers if I ever want to live in my hometown again.


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