JimmyG

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Fellow non-trads,

So I have completely stopped working all together in order to study for the Aug. MCAT because I realized that it is hard for one to remember everything from Chemistry, Physics and Biology when those classes were taken 7-9 years ago. I study all day long (except for breaks to check sdn!) and then way into the wee hours of the night. I turn down lots of invitations from my girlfriends to have dinner during the week and I ignore my husband much of the weekend (he is doing internships out of town this summer) while I gnaw away at these prep books. My dog hates me because his walks are always at 10 pm now. I feel like a hermit in my house. I think I last put makeup on 3 weeks ago. Sadly, I still am not doing well on my practice MCATs. :confused: So this is more of a vent or the beginning of a support group. Anyone out there with some tips?? :idea: Love or encouraging thoughts or any funny jokes will all be appreciated. Thanks!
 
M

MSc44

JimmyG said:
Fellow non-trads,

So I have completely stopped working all together in order to study for the Aug. MCAT because I realized that it is hard for one to remember everything from Chemistry, Physics and Biology when those classes were taken 7-9 years ago. I study all day long (except for breaks to check sdn!) and then way into the wee hours of the night. I turn down lots of invitations from my girlfriends to have dinner during the week and I ignore my husband much of the weekend (he is doing internships out of town this summer) while I gnaw away at these prep books. My dog hates me because his walks are always at 10 pm now. I feel like a hermit in my house. I think I last put makeup on 3 weeks ago. Sadly, I still am not doing well on my practice MCATs. :confused: So this is more of a vent or the beginning of a support group. Anyone out there with some tips?? :idea: Love or encouraging thoughts or any funny jokes will all be appreciated. Thanks!


not alone jimmyG

although im not taking the aug exam (taking the jan) im using the EK books and getting shot down everytime i do problems. I did take a practice exam about 3 months ago with no studying at all, and got only a 13 (it was a TPR exam). Im nontrad in the sence that i graduated college in 04 but just finished a MS in mol bio in june. I have awesome grades all accross the board( grad and UG)....even A's in orgo
but i dont know what it is with this exam, its like a mental block of somthing. I know i have lots of time but that also leaves lots of time to forget stuff
As a 25 yo male who alway's acceled in everything from academics to sports, i am finding not doing as well with t his material frustrating and very discouraging.....

sorry i know you were asking for some words of encouragement and all i gave you was a sob story.........i need to vent badly

just give it your best, i know its hard, your not alone
 

asm028400

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I can totally remember being in your situation not too long ago. My advice would be that, while it's good to study a lot, give yourself one or two breaks during the day (30 mins-1 hr) to do stuff that you totally enjoy that gets your mind off of the MCAT. Take your dog on the walk at 7 pm if thats what you enjoy, exercise, or just veg out. I found that this helped my concentration immensely over time. Good luck! :)
 
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A man comes into the ER and yells, "My wife's going to have her baby in the cab!" I grabbed my stuff, rushed out to the cab, lifted the lady's dress, and began to take off her underwear. Suddenly, I noticed that there were several cabs...and I was in the wrong one.

Submitted by Dr. Mark MacDonald, San Antonio, TX.

Cheers, don't give up. :laugh:
 

MiesVanDerMom

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Studying for the MCAT was the roughest thing my marriage ever went through. i honestly thought we were going to wind up divorced. I NEVER saw my husband for about 4 months straight. But the good news is, there's a finite limit to it. The big day arrives and then it's all over and you go back to living your life. You survive.

As for not doing well on practice questions: the EK/TPR/etc. questions are designed to be hard. Take a real AAMC practice exam if you want an accurate idea of your score. I remember feeling SOOOO discouraged. I was sitting in the library weeping thinking, I've ruined my children's future. I'm not smart enough and I've wasted our savings on post-bass classes! But it DOES get better as you get closer to exam time and have your material covered. The MCAT is a test of mental toughness and perserverance as much as anything. Don't let it get you down.

And now a joke I heard here on SDN:

What do you do with 56 dead electrons?

Barium

:luck: :luck: :luck: to all the non-trads!
 

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JimmyG said:
Fellow non-trads,

So I have completely stopped working all together in order to study for the Aug. MCAT because I realized that it is hard for one to remember everything from Chemistry, Physics and Biology when those classes were taken 7-9 years ago. I study all day long (except for breaks to check sdn!) and then way into the wee hours of the night. I turn down lots of invitations from my girlfriends to have dinner during the week and I ignore my husband much of the weekend (he is doing internships out of town this summer) while I gnaw away at these prep books. My dog hates me because his walks are always at 10 pm now. I feel like a hermit in my house. I think I last put makeup on 3 weeks ago. Sadly, I still am not doing well on my practice MCATs. :confused: So this is more of a vent or the beginning of a support group. Anyone out there with some tips?? :idea: Love or encouraging thoughts or any funny jokes will all be appreciated. Thanks!
Work out, relax, try your best, and let all the rest fall into place. Don't have too much anxiety before the exam, it will just put you at a disadvante. Work your hardest, relax before the exam, work out, and take a 2 day break before the exam, and go to the exam as confident as possible and let it be... Hopefully you will 30+ it with your hard work.
 
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JimmyG

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MSc44,

Hey, don't worry about venting...I just vented away up there..:)

If this makes you feel any better, I read somwhere (oh, because I am using the EK books, as well) that the questions they have in their books are the most challenging ones because they feel that one should already know the easy things... Hee hee...I didn't get an A in orgo like you did (congrats, my all time unfavorite class...blah), but I did do well in school, so yes, like you it is frustrating to go, "oh, that one is wrong again, and I just read the information..." It's a dog of a test but you can do it. Good luck!!

MSc44 said:
not alone jimmyG

although im not taking the aug exam (taking the jan) im using the EK books and getting shot down everytime i do problems. I did take a practice exam about 3 months ago with no studying at all, and got only a 13 (it was a TPR exam). Im nontrad in the sence that i graduated college in 04 but just finished a MS in mol bio in june. I have awesome grades all accross the board( grad and UG)....even A's in orgo
but i dont know what it is with this exam, its like a mental block of somthing. I know i have lots of time but that also leaves lots of time to forget stuff
As a 25 yo male who alway's acceled in everything from academics to sports, i am finding not doing as well with t his material frustrating and very discouraging.....

sorry i know you were asking for some words of encouragement and all i gave you was a sob story.........i need to vent badly

just give it your best, i know its hard, your not alone
 
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JimmyG

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NewNick said:
A man comes into the ER and yells, "My wife's going to have her baby in the cab!" I grabbed my stuff, rushed out to the cab, lifted the lady's dress, and began to take off her underwear. Suddenly, I noticed that there were several cabs...and I was in the wrong one.

Submitted by Dr. Mark MacDonald, San Antonio, TX.

Cheers, don't give up. :laugh:
Thanks, that one I'll have to tell again...
 
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JimmyG

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OK, can you tell I was replying as I was reading...

Thanks to you all...MiesVanDerMom..I have been there with tears running down my face...:) Our money only goes to the most important of things because we have so little of it right now...This is what is sad, I was at Target yesterday with my wonderful mother and sister-in-law and, ohhhh, did they have a cute purse. It was a reality check that when I was working full-time I would have popped that precious into my cart without a second thought, now, I think, "I could pay for 2 more medical schools when I apply on AMCAS!" What sick thoughts us applicants have.

Thanks ALL!! We can do this and good luck to all you applicants!! :luck:

But, please, if you have any more funny jokes, bring them on...
 

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my jokes are lame, and better over a beer so i will send you good karma instead. :love: :luck: :love: :luck: :love: :luck: :love: :luck: :love: :luck:

there that should do it
 

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Perhaps the most therapeutic thing for me while studying for the MCAT was going for jogs. Albeit, by the end I was listening to audio osmosis on my ipod during them. But you would be surprised what a good endorphin rush can do to your spirits.
 

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I hit the wall last week...just couldn't go any more...but got back into it last night.

I wish I could quit work, but that's not an option..so I'll continue my 20 hour days...

Physics and Molecular Genetics are beating the crap outta me...i'm ready to take some more practice tests because the Kaplan material is doing nothing but making me want to drink...heavily.

It would be helpful if my wife would just quit with some things (projects) until I'm done...that's all I ask.

I honestly wonder if she will handle med school very well...cause this MCAT stuff hasn't gone over well.
 
M

MSc44

JimmyG said:
Fellow non-trads,

So I have completely stopped working all together in order to study for the Aug. MCAT because I realized that it is hard for one to remember everything from Chemistry, Physics and Biology when those classes were taken 7-9 years ago. I study all day long (except for breaks to check sdn!) and then way into the wee hours of the night. I turn down lots of invitations from my girlfriends to have dinner during the week and I ignore my husband much of the weekend (he is doing internships out of town this summer) while I gnaw away at these prep books. My dog hates me because his walks are always at 10 pm now. I feel like a hermit in my house. I think I last put makeup on 3 weeks ago. Sadly, I still am not doing well on my practice MCATs. :confused: So this is more of a vent or the beginning of a support group. Anyone out there with some tips?? :idea: Love or encouraging thoughts or any funny jokes will all be appreciated. Thanks!

Jimmy G

what do you do, or what have you done when you study the material, and think you get questions right then go to check them and get completly blown away, this is happening to me know...
any advice
 
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MSc44 said:
Jimmy G

what do you do, or what have you done when you study the material, and think you get questions right then go to check them and get completly blown away, this is happening to me know...
any advice
Well, I keep a box of tissues on my desk and pop a few Xanax like Tic Tac and wash it down with a shot of Baileys.

My biggest challenge, crazy enough, has been GChem. I have read the entire EK book, done all the questions and listened to the Jordan and Jon on Audio Osmosis until I can finish all of their jokes and I still didn't feel "good" about any of it (b/c I was averaging 6 or 7 on the little 30 min practice exams... :eek: ) So I actually purchased off Amazon.com the 1001 EK problems for Chem and received it yesterday and promptly began from page 1. It's tedious, but it has been VERY helpful for me to do even the basic "What is the atomic mass of this compound?" type problems. Little things like that I have forgotten since I took Chemistry years ago and I really feel that the problems in the 1001 book will help me practice the basics so that I can actually try to problem solve on the hard questions. I'm taking a full practice test on Monday and let you know :scared: I am also making flash cards and I take them with me to the gym and flip through them as I run or bike (so nerdy, yes, but helpful). I do, also, go back on every one that I get wrong and re-figure out the problem once I know how to do it. Besides that, I drink Baileys. That always seems to help. :D
 

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I definitely can relate - I hit the wall earlier in the week, and I'm having a hard time getting back into it. I taught four general chemistry labs last year at UPitt, and after going through the Kaplan comprehensive review tests, I'm convinced that I know nothing about the subject, and should wear a helmet so I don't hurt myself. And the less said about organic chemistry the better.

I'd just recommend unplugging from the books for a bit and exercising more - this is extraordinarily stressful, and if you don't find a way to decompress, you will explode.
 
M

MSc44

JimmyG said:
Well, I keep a box of tissues on my desk and pop a few Xanax like Tic Tac and wash it down with a shot of Baileys.

My biggest challenge, crazy enough, has been GChem. I have read the entire EK book, done all the questions and listened to the Jordan and Jon on Audio Osmosis until I can finish all of their jokes and I still didn't feel "good" about any of it (b/c I was averaging 6 or 7 on the little 30 min practice exams... :eek: ) So I actually purchased off Amazon.com the 1001 EK problems for Chem and received it yesterday and promptly began from page 1. It's tedious, but it has been VERY helpful for me to do even the basic "What is the atomic mass of this compound?" type problems. Little things like that I have forgotten since I took Chemistry years ago and I really feel that the problems in the 1001 book will help me practice the basics so that I can actually try to problem solve on the hard questions. I'm taking a full practice test on Monday and let you know :scared: I am also making flash cards and I take them with me to the gym and flip through them as I run or bike (so nerdy, yes, but helpful). I do, also, go back on every one that I get wrong and re-figure out the problem once I know how to do it. Besides that, I drink Baileys. That always seems to help. :D

im about feeling that im going to invest in a nice fat box of tissues...cause thats how i been feeling latley. The xanax is KEY!. funny u mentioned then since they have been the closest thing next to me second to my boxer (dog). I have become a huge fan of red wine, and that does tend to relax me at the end of the night.....(my dad a physician endorses both xanax and red wine :laugh: )....any way on a more serious note good luck on the full lenght next week and let me know ho0w you do.....
how long would you say it took you to get through ALL the material??
 
M

MSc44

Quix said:
I definitely can relate - I hit the wall earlier in the week, and I'm having a hard time getting back into it. I taught four general chemistry labs last year at UPitt, and after going through the Kaplan comprehensive review tests, I'm convinced that I know nothing about the subject, and should wear a helmet so I don't hurt myself. And the less said about organic chemistry the better.

I'd just recommend unplugging from the books for a bit and exercising more - this is extraordinarily stressful, and if you don't find a way to decompress, you will explode.

dude i hear ya
now, i have no anger issues what so ever and besides this exam i am the most layed back person in the workd but after going through books and then doing practice problems and getting like an average of 2 right out of 8 is a huge kick to the groin :mad: ....and makes me angry and discouraged

for me its g-chem and physics

since i have an advanced degree in mol bio and got A's in orgo........but i cant do physics or orgo to save my life
 

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It sounds like some of you guys are a little burned out. I agree with whomever suggested taking some breaks. If you're studying as hard as you can and your scores are going down, then you should try backing off for a while. Maybe even take an entire day or two off to do something fun with your family or to just relax and sleep. The MCAT, unfortunately, is only the beginning of the marathon, so don't exhaust yourself completely now. And most importantly, don't give up. Come visit us in the subforum if you have any questions; I've seen a few of the nontrads in there. :luck: to everyone getting ready to take the Aug. MCAT. :)
 
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Thanks Q!! It's nice to hear from you with your encouraging words. I actually am going to take the day off and hang out with my husband in this wonderful 100 degree heat we are having :eek:

MSc44--Honestly, I'm not done with EVERYTHING. Since I am now crunched on time, I really am just skimming the Bio EK book and doing the 30 min exams and if I can get a 10 or higher, I move on. (Personally, I don't have the HIGHEST aspirations for acceptance....I really just want to get accepted into my state school since it is where my husband is located and much, much cheaper--so my goal is 28-31 on the test..). Since I felt like I was relearning everything out of the GChem book, I would spend about a day per chapter in the EK books, so I guess it took me about 7 days (7 chapters?). I am now 3 chapters away from finishing the physics book and once I have that down, I'm just going to practice, practice, practice... Somewhere in there I have to do verbal, oh, and there is Orgo. Luckily, I JUST finished Orgo II in the spring so it is fresh on the brain and am hoping it won't take me as long to understand as GChem and Physics. Ohhhh, if I had just started earlier....Aug 19 is a little too close for comfort for me right now.
 

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JimmyG said:
Fellow non-trads,

So I have completely stopped working all together in order to study for the Aug. MCAT because I realized that it is hard for one to remember everything from Chemistry, Physics and Biology when those classes were taken 7-9 years ago. I study all day long (except for breaks to check sdn!) and then way into the wee hours of the night. I turn down lots of invitations from my girlfriends to have dinner during the week and I ignore my husband much of the weekend (he is doing internships out of town this summer) while I gnaw away at these prep books. My dog hates me because his walks are always at 10 pm now. I feel like a hermit in my house. I think I last put makeup on 3 weeks ago. Sadly, I still am not doing well on my practice MCATs. :confused: So this is more of a vent or the beginning of a support group. Anyone out there with some tips?? :idea: Love or encouraging thoughts or any funny jokes will all be appreciated. Thanks![/QUOTE


:luck: to all of us studying for the MCAT in Aug! I took it in April, but got an 8 on the PS (better on the others) so I'm retaking. I've been studying 10 - 12 hour days, and scoring 10s or 11s on all practice exams. I've gone through all my study materials twice now and just doing problems over and over - PS is my weakness as I despise Physics and struggle to understand it. One thing that I'm doing differently this time (that drives me totally batty btw!) is to just sit down and MEMORIZE. For GChem and Phys I'm discovering I'm iffy on all those equations. So I made a list, and I...simply (ha!)... make sure I can reproduce every single one of them! Now don't misunderstand - straight memorization is NOT my strong point - I'm a conceptual big-picture kind of person. But I'm discovering that, when I simply FORCE my mind to remember those equations (AND what they mean and how to use them), my score goes up consistently.

One other 'trick' I'm using, since I'm a single parent of a teenager (yup I'm 'old')... he gets so frustrated with my constant studying, so I've included him. He'll take my flashcards and drill me on equations and explanations. We've turned it into a game (I refuse to get grouchy with him) and he's helping alot. This way, too, I get to model super-tough study skills for him and he gets to appreciate just how hard it is.

One other thing I've done this time that really helped - the first four practice MCATS I've taken, I didn't time them. I read very fast, and on the 'real' test in April I was done with each section with time to spare. I just really wanted to get my head straight just with the content. So each time I'd take the tests, I went slowly, rechecking each question for clues, making certain I wasn't skimming too fast or guessing before I read all the options. This too has made a huge difference in my score as I go on to timing practice tests.

:luck: to all of us once again, and thanks to those who have gone before and reach the target!
 

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JimmyG said:
Thanks Q!! It's nice to hear from you with your encouraging words. I actually am going to take the day off and hang out with my husband in this wonderful 100 degree heat we are having :eek:
Yikes. :eek: Don't get heatstroke on top of everything else! But I think a scheduled day off every now and then is a really good thing. Sometimes I have to be reminded to take that advice myself. ;)
 

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I recently was listening to a podcast called Premed Focus that answers a new question every episode. They interviewed some non-traditional medical students in the last episode and asked them about their experiences.
 

jaylicious

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I recently was listening to a podcast called "Premed Focus" that answers a new question every episode. They interviewed some non-traditional medical students in the last episode and asked them about their experiences. You can find the show on iTunes or at www.thisweekinmedicalschool.com. It is episode 3 of Premed Focus

www.thisweekinmedicalschool.com
 

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Hang in there my sister! You can do it.
 
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