Posts tagged ‘lifestyle’

Keep Calm + Carry On.

Well well well, another evening post wherein I have not learned that posting in the late evening is probably not my best bet.  I shall attempt this over and over again until it REALLY bites me where I don’t want to be bitten.  But for now, I will obey my post every day in September personal challenge, and just DO it.

Since I spent 9 weeks (!!!) posting incessantly about running, running, and running, I feel it somewhat necessary to make this a sort of ongoing (ish) theme of this here blog.  I haven’t talked about running in a LONG time, so here goes nothing.

Laura from Ink and Sheep (go check out her amazing crafty abilities, she wow’ed me, let her wow you too!) commented yesterday, and asked some questions that prompted this post:

“I’m curious to know if you’re still running now that you finished the 9 weeks and what your next running goals are? Or maybe it inspired you to make other changes in your life? Or maybe other things you’d like to achieve, whether they are running related or not.”

I am shocked and apalled, slightly, that I managed to let running take over my life for several weeks, in fact – I welcomed running into my life – and then I just kinda forgot about it.  On my blog, anyway.  I am happy, proud and so satisfied to announce that I am in fact still running.  And I am still giving it my all.  Ish.  It’s a weird thing, you see.  I can’t believe I haven’t mentioned it, or maybe I have and just forgot, but we got temporarily gifted a used jogging stroller that was not being used, and so since I wanted to do the program all over again and focus on speed, I thought, hmm, jogging stroller – check, C25K program again – check, I may as well combine the two, and so I have.  It feels like a completely new endeavour, in a sense.  It’s weird doing the program again – because part of me wants to slack a bit since I know that I can do it, and so it’s not AS challenging, but part of me is struggling just a tad because well, it’s harder jogging with a stroller.  I never realized how much I used my arms to gain momentum, and to help push me, but turns out I use them more than I thought I did.  It also turns out that while jogging strollers glide smoother than your regular ol’ everyday stroller, you’re still pushing weight and running while pushing that weight, and while that makes for a bit of a strength-building workout combined with running, it makes for one tired mama.  Add Lily and her leash into the mix and it’s sort of a mish-mash at times.

BUT, it’s really not that bad, and dare I say it, easier than I thought jogging with a stroller and a dog would be.  It’s probably a blessing that Lily only weighs 5lbs, but that’s beside the point…

So that is my current running goal.  To finish the C25K again, with Lily AND Cade, both my babies.  Lily still loves it, and Cade also loves chilling out in the stroller while we run throughout the streets, takin’ it all in.  We’ve been going in the morning before his morning nap, and it works out well.  It’s been incorporated into our routine easy enough and I love that I am able to take Cade with me, and that he will actually SEE me working out, running my face (+ heart + soul) off like crazy, to the best of my abilities.  When he’s older, this will be even more important, but for now it works and I am glad that it is just one more activity we are able to do together that is healthy, and that I can tell him about when he is older.

Becoming a mother and learning how to run and how to not fear running (or parenthood, for that matter) have been two of the most transformative experiences of my LIFE.  I don’t feel like I have the proper words, energy, or insight (like I said, I suck + it’s late) right now to capture this in the essence that I’d like, but they have literally made me do a 360.  Sounds so cliche maybe but I am learning that I can do things.  It’s so simple but not.  It’s so difficult but not.  I. can. do. things. Like be a little bit selfless, but not so much so that it is damaging to my family.  Like take care of myself.  That one is the clincher.  I need to take care of myself more than ever, because I want to be able to run around the yard and the park, playing chase, playing tag, running after pseudo-animals Cade has created in some crazy toddler game.  I want to model healthy behaviours, habits, and lifestyle to Cade and our future children, so that they can adopt these practices and ways of living into their life, and then pass it on to their little ones, our future grandchildren, that is if they choose to have children (please!  I can’t wait to be a grandma ;).

I have never eaten so healthy in my life.  I have never done so many ‘green’ things in my life.  I have never cared SO much about my health, ever.  Health is so holistic, and too often when we think healthy, we think eating and exercising right but it is SO much more than that.  That is a small tiny fraction of the whole deal, and while it’s important, it is not the be all end all.  Emotional connectedness rings so true with diet + exercise.  Look at the whole issue of overeating and eating disorders and stress and what have you.  Now tie that to issues with weight, be they being “too thin” or “too heavy” (yes, I know, according to what standards, that’s another issue for another day though).  Emotions and eating are one and the same for a lot of people.  How many people eat when they’re happy?  Sad?  Excited?  Proud?  Angry?  Hurt?  Anxious?  I know I’ve certainly got an issue with food and I am pinpointing it by the DAY, analyzing when I eat and how I eat.  I don’t obsess over it but I have certainly noticed patterns, and they often aren’t healthy.  I have begun to change these patterns, and I have abolished eating at night, almost completely, unless I’m really ravished and I can grab something healthy.  I am trying to stop rewarding myself with food, because this is such a temporary fix, and I have seen how damaging eating for social reasons is and can be.  I still do it though.  I still eat socially.  It’s like someone who has issues with alcohol, my issues with food are similar.  I don’t want to down play someone’s issues with alcoholism at all and that’s not what I am trying to do, but I think food addiction is real, very real, and takes some serious acknowledgement and inner healing work to combat.  Honestly, having a year off of work to stay home and learn about my son, get to know him, has helped me to get to know myself better too, because the person I am projecting to him, the person I am to him is the person that I AM, plain and simple.  Who do I want him to know as a mother?

I have had a year to get to know myself better, and to work on things that were not jiving with my life.  Taking up running was one huge step in the right direction, and it completely helped me to begin to tackle these weird eating habits of mine.  Begin to tackle, being the key words there.  It is an ongoing process for me, and I think it will be, always.  It takes much serious dedication and empowerment.  While diet + exercise are not the be all end all as I touched on before, they do go hand in hand for me.  One motivates the other, and for me, that works.  They also motivate every other aspect of health that I need to focus on too, and they all go together like a nice and neat puzzle.  It just fits together, so, so perfectly.  When I’m running, and taking care of THAT part of my body and my mind, I need to put the appropriate fuel and energy into my body, or I will crash, and crashing never got anyone good did it?

I am not perfect and I do not make perfect choices.  My choices are sometimes motivated by something that isn’t healthy or wholesome for me.  Will I go ahead and have that social drink, those few social wings, just because I want to and it’s fun to sit around and reminisce over a couple cold ones and some sticky appetizers?  You bet I will.  You can also bet I won’t do that everyday, and you can also bet that I will be putting ten times as much good stuff into my body, not to make up for that, but because it’s what I need, it’s what I crave.  Likewise, there will also be days where I sit on the couch and decide not to run, because my body and my soul and my heart are craving a break, some downtime, and I need to feed my body what it is feeding me.  It is a two-way street, and because it is giving me, allowing me, the time to reflect and to have some quiet, down-time, I feel that I need to respect that, and listen to what my body is telling me I need.

And on that note, my body is severely screaming and yelling and fighting me right now for sleep.  It has been since I opened up WordPress to type this here ditty to y’all.  I made an imperfect choice and ignored that need, and now it’s time to give in.

So tell me dear friends, dear readers, what positive and healthful changes have you made in your life recently?  What inspired them? 


September 7, 2011 at 11:43 pm 4 comments

C25K: Week 4 Day 3

Oh god, alright, okay, let me compose myself.  Can I just say something about week 4?  IT WAS BRUTAL!  I don’t know why, but I can venture a couple guesses: 1) the heat 2) the running distances were stepped RIGHT up coupled with a LOT less walking.

Week 4 was the first week the negative voices tried to take over and knock me down, but I knocked them down instead.  They tried to tell me that I couldn’t do it, and that I should stop and just walk because I’m barely running anyway.  They also yelled at me and said that I suck and I was going too slow.   Seems I’m always having to talk out loud to myself to shut them up, because sometimes they can get very loud and VERY overpowering, and I don’t want none of that in my run, let alone my life.  So, I shut them up and shut them down baby.

Still, week 4 kicked my ass a little bit more than I kicked its ass, but I still finished it, and I didn’t stop once.  That is my golden rule, NO STOPPING unless I am honest to goodness on the verge of death.  And while I have tried to convince myself that if I didn’t stop, I would likely die, I genuinely have NOT felt like I was going to keel over, and so, I’ve had no reason to stop.

I was feeling a bit down in the dumps once again today because it was just SO hard, but it was hot and I was warm and sweaty and and it was early in the morning.  However, the early in the morning thing worked to my advantage for sure.  However, when I got back and mapped out my distance, it was 3.7km as opposed to 3.86km on Tuesday night.  But my run today was 4 minutes less than Tuesday’s, so I suppose .1km could be achieved in 4 minutes, yes?  Seems I’m consistently running the same distance.  And while I KNOW it’s about the journey and NOT the silly destination, I want to see those numbers a-rising, but I am really pushing myself to the very extent of my abilities, I do believe.  I’m going to just have to keep on pushin’ and do what I can do.  I’m likely going to do the program again, actually, I AM going to do the program again, right after I finish week 9 day 3, so then I can focus on increasing speed and distance.  Right now, I’m learning to breathe, run, and trust myself, because trusting myself is the hardest part of it all.

June 30, 2011 at 10:32 am 5 comments

C25K: Week 1 Day 1

I am going to call it a success, because only I am allowed to define it, and that’s what it was to me, a success.  I completed day 1 and I feel great, albeit a little noodly and jelly-like, but great.  I am even looking forward to what Tuesday will bring in terms of if it will be easier or harder than today.  I’m planning on doing the program Sundays, Tuesdays and Thursdays, with strength training on the off days, as well as daily walks with Lily & Cade, as we’ve been doing since the weather cheered up.

I weighed myself, did my measurements (biceps, thighs, calves, hips, waist) and took 3 photos – one from the front, one from the back, and one from the side.  I plan to do this regime weekly so I can monitor my progress that way as well.   I’m not quite brave enough to share those results with y’all, so I’ll just keep them in my secret little book for only my eyes, and Kyle’s.

So, was it hard?  Yes, it was very hard.  There was more than one moment where I felt if my foot hit the pavement one more time, surely I was goner.  And there definitely cannot be any more breaths left in me to take, because I’m pretty sure I’m in the midst of taking the last bit of breath I have in my body.  But there were a lot more breaths, and there were a lot more steps taken.  I didn’t give up at all.  I also wondered if I should maybe walk through one of the 60 second runs, but I didn’t.  My run may have been slower, but I really had to concentrate on pacing myself, and focusing on breathing, and telling myself that this was something I could do.  I was doing it.

The third run was probably the hardest.  I felt as if I was in a valley, and I had just come to a massive hill that I had to get over, and the only way around it, was to jog.  And so I did.  It was rough and tough, and there was sweat and almost tears.  I felt emotional when I was running.  It was a beautiful Sunday morning, I had just ate breakfast with my boys, and I was out there conquering a fear.  That is one of the biggest reasons for me taking on this challenge.  Clearly I am hoping to see some results in terms of fitness & lifestyle, physical health stuff, but I am tackling a fear, and that’s huge.  Doing this program is so meaningful to me in so many ways, and thinking of it like that made me feel so very sentimental and emotional.  Also, the almost tears were a direct result of OMFG, THIS IS BRUTAL.  MY LUNGS.  MY LEGS!

On my 5 minute cool down, I felt proud.  I could feel it in my bones, and I could absolutely feel it in my muscles.  I started having weird back spasms, and I’m not sure why.  I guess my core had just taken a beating, and it had to let me know that.  Things hurt me in places I didn’t know could hurt.  I felt pain I hadn’t felt before.  But mostly, I could feel it in my heart.  I know, sounds super cheeseball and really pathetic and I am almost on the verge of becoming a preachy fitness guru, but this got me going.  This got me thinking positively.  When I wanted to tell myself to stop, I told myself to KEEP THIS SHIT GOING!  Not only could I not let the people down who I am accountable to (YOU, dear readers, along with the few of you that are taking this journey with me!), but most of all, I couldn’t let myself down.  If I had stopped, I would have felt like crap.  The stinkiest, biggest piece of crap ever.  Like a really bad up-the-diaper, smeared on the back diaper kind of crap.  And that just won’t work for me.  Right now, I feel like I could take on the world, and while that may seem drastic seeing as I’ve only completed 1 day of the program, that is exactly the kind of start I need.

If you’re doing this C25K, let me know in comments and we can motivate each other and remain accountable!

June 5, 2011 at 10:17 pm 1 comment

T-5 Months.

Equals, back to work for this mama.

Not impressed.  Not excited.  VERY sad.  VERY anxious.
So I won’t talk much about it.  But we’re past the halfway point now, and that scares the living bejeebus out of me.

However, I am pretty sure we have found childcare, so that is a bonus.  Just have to talk to her and solidify the arrangements.  I feel like I am jinxing it by blogging about it and when I actually speak with her, her spots will have filled up.  Please please please let that not be the case.

Anyway, moving on, because if I focus too much on going back to work I will likely have an anxiety attack and/or a crying fit.  Maybe I am being ridiculous, but I really don’t know how this transition is going to go.  I am going to be an absolute disgusting blubbering mess the first day.  The first week!

My boy is 7 months old today and that just shocks me.  Where DID the time go, because I surely remember everyone telling me it was going to breeze on by, but really, that fast?  I don’t imagine it will slow down at all, either.  Oh, my little peanut, how he used to be such a tiny little bundle, and he would stay moulded in the bum out legs up froggy position when I picked him up.  Now, he does not stay in any one position for longer than 0.435782 seconds because he wants to GO GO GO and see what else there is to explore in the world.  My little angel, an explorer, an active little wee one.  He seriously is motivating me to get my butt moving.  Because heck, how will I be chasing his little fluffy bum all around and about if I continue with this sedentary lifestyle?  (EDITOR’S NOTE: I am not sedentary in the least, but I need to make some severe adjustments.)

It is amazing what 7 months can do.  In our world, 7 months has brought about constant rolling around, steady sitting up, a new voice discovered nearly weekly, C’s consistent and growing fascination with Lily, such huge amounts of happiness, and a more stable and balanced mama.  Those are the big things going on right now, and it’s pretty exciting.  The only thing really missing from that is, cuddles.  C is not a huge fan of cuddles unless he is sleepy!  So, I take full advantage of that and cuddle the crap right out of him.  It helps him to feel safe and secure before bedtime, not to mention super cozy.  It’s a really nice way to end our busy days and draw the evening to a close.  Sometimes we’ll lie on the couch, sometimes we’ll lie in bed and just cuddle, talk, and he’ll typically shove his hands into my mouth and try to pull off my glasses.  It’s a very special time.

7 months, 7 months.  Hard to believe we’re more than halfway there.  Halfway to 1.  And the challenges keep on coming.  They’re always different.  We keep it real, we keep it fresh.  I’ve got my bestest little boy to thank for that.  Love you little peanut, you’re the sweetest little monkey I ever did see.  xoxo.

June 3, 2011 at 10:29 pm 3 comments

The How to Not be a Sloth Guide.

Guess what?  I started a new project, it’s called No Longer a Sloth.  What it involves is simple and yet complex.  Simple because the tasks in and of themselves are not out of the ordinary.  Complex because it is a lifestyle change that I have committed myself to a million times before and dropped out of.  Except – and I understand if you don’t believe me – this time, I’m serious.

I have a plan of attack in place, even.  I am not the kind of person to fly by the seat of my pants.  I like to put my whole self heart soul body mind into what I do, and what I do is planned out and rarely spontaneous.  And so of course I need to share my plan with you, so that I can be not only accountable to myself, but accountable to… the Internet?  I guess.

Here it is.  Wait for it…

How to Avoid Shapeshifting into a Sloth

  1. Eat oatmeal, blueberries, vanilla soy milk and cinnamon for breakfast.
  2. Eat lots of vegetables, minimal carbohydrates, lots and lots of fibre, and only eat when hungry and not out of habit (this part is the hardest – I am an emotional/bored eater, fo SHO.)
  3. Go to the gym an hour at least 4 times a week.  Tuesdays are reserved for Aquacise.  The other days – 40 minutes of cardio (switch it up so you don’t get bored) and then weights.
  4. Walk your dog!  If you have one…  And if you don’t, get one.  Or two…
  5. Add some other fun movement stuff to your day – perhaps in the form of Wii Fit hula-hooping?
  6. Treat yourself, because if not, when you finally decide to have The Forbidden, you may binge eat and go into a carb-junk-food induced coma.  You might not but the fact that it’s a possibility is not the coolest thing ever.
  7. Journal what you eat, journal your moods, journal your bedtimes and wake-ups.  You will see patterns and you will be able to recognize a surge of energy within yourself.  You likely will be more efficient in the workplace as well – a bonus to your employer, which makes me think our gym memberships should be subsidized by our workplace… not likely.
  8. Find a gym buddy who is committed and will be a positive influence on your new life.
  9. Pick a time and day, and weigh yourself once a week at that time and day.  If you do it more than that, you may get discouraged and sabotage your efforts.
  10. Think of alternatives to “junk” food – being healthy doesn’t have to be boring and bland.

Alright.  I sound like a damn diet blog.  That’s not what I’m going for, I promise, but I need to share my successes and tips and I need to talk about it because it’s a huge part of my life right now.  I have been weighing myself every Thursday night when I get home, before supper.  This week boasted a very exciting -2.6 loss.  This is something I want badly.  I am tired of telling myself why I can’t go to the gym or why I shouldn’t go to the gym.  They are all lame excuses.  I need to shift my thinking and come up with why I should go to the gym and why I have to go to the gym.  The fact is, I’m not healthy, and if I keep going at this rate I will maybe die young and I want to reduce my chances of dying young as much as I can.  I don’t want to get heart disease.  I don’t want to get diabetes.  I don’t want to laze around while my children (and dogs!) run around.  I want to be able to keep up with my life, with my family, and with everyone around me.  I want to feel energetic and have a clear head.  I want to be able to walk into any store and be able to squeeze myself into any piece of clothing.   I am trying hard to set these habits for myself and so I have to do it right immediately or else it will not fly and I will be back to where I used to be – lying on the couch with a place of nachos.


February 12, 2010 at 7:49 pm 3 comments

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