The Daily EO: January 31st, 2013

So, the end of January is upon us and that means I have to give you an update on Cliche January – or my journey with the other masses of people trying to remove the Christmas chocolates from my ass.

I’ll tell you now – the numbers are not too impressive.  My weight is generally the same, but I can live with that, maybe down a couple of pounds.  I am sleeping better, and feeling better also.

For the first 2 weeks of January, I was sick, so getting in exercise proved to be difficult when all you really wanted to do was lie on the couch and moan.  Work also got quite overwhelming for a while, so I really just wanted to lie and the couch and be left alone.

So instead of beating myself up about that, I will celebrate the times I got off the couch.  This month I:

  • Got outside to run 2 X 5+K.  This is difficult to do because when I leave for and return from work, it is dark.  I don’t feel comfortable running in the dark alone, so it ends up being Saturday and Sunday.  Also, I don’t really have proper rain gear, so it has to be a Saturday or Sunday when it is not raining.  All in all, that is 25% success rate of the 8 available days.
  • I did 130 squats according to the Squats Pro App I have.
  • I hit the gym in our building about 6 times this month and while that number is not very high, it is 6 more times than I actually did in December.  Besides the hordes of Cliche January-ers are there, and it bugs me to be part of their movement, so okay.
  • Went for a 17 km walk with Emile around the sea wall and Stanley Park.  That was a long walk.
  • I went to a spin class at a GoodLife gym which was pretty hard but I did the whole thing.  Classes are included in a gym membership there, which I do not really want (see noted gym in my building), but they charge $15/class for drop in fees.  Which then makes the gym membership thing cheaper than taking classes.  So, waiting to understand how Emile’s contract renewal is going to look – don’t want to sign up for a long term commitment right now.
  • I took a healthy lunch to work every day.  And packed one for Emile too.
  • I stopped caffeine again (and so much better for it).
  • Use Mind Jogger to remind me to “Drink some Water” and “Count to 10 and breathe” twice a day each.
  • Watched 5 episodes of the Biggest Loser.  (doesn’t that count?)

There is lots of room for improvement in Fit February, and I am committed to continuing my efforts.

January 31st, 2013 Extra-Ordinary:  Cliche January’s mixed success rate inspires me to keep on moving into Fit February.

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The Daily EO: January 14th, 2013

I am not a great skier, but I never fall.

I was a successful brownie and a guide that eventually dropped out due to my refusal to conform.

If you combine two statements about me, it all but completely sums up my personality.    Sheer willpower keeps me on my feet, but I never quite got good at skiing.  I am nervous of ice, steep hills, stray junk on the hills, and well. .  mostly falling and anything that could cause falling.  And hurting myself badly.  But also, I am afraid of looking foolish or unable to cope with what is in front of me.

In guides and brownies, you had an opportunity to earn badges which you then sewed on your sash.  If you didn’t wear your sash, you earned demerits.  Therefore, you HAD to wear your badges outs in front of everyone that showed all of the badges you’ve earned.  It wasn’t bragging, it was mandatory display of facts.  I could show the world how awesome I was and be protected from being a braggart.   And if this didn’t motivate young Susan!   My mother had to implement a rule that I could only work on 5 badges at a time.  I was so fettered as a child.  Sigh.

But I parted ways with guides when it became obvious to me that they wanted people to conform and I didn’t want to.  I *had* to wear a uniform (not pants instead of the skirt), I *had* to show up all the time and I *had* to follow the rules.  Conforming – especially when it is something I don’t really want to do – is not in my make-up.  I thrive on being different, being contrary and being individual.  And so the badges – and really,  how many more could I earn – didn’t outweight the conformity aspect.  And when my mother told me I had to either follow the rules or quit, I quit.

So, when faced with spin class tonight – which happens to be taught by my current boss at work (yes, that is weird a little isn’t it?) – I certainly was not going to fail in front of her, another co-worker that takes the class regularly or in front of other toned up peeps there.   She started the class out by letting people know there were 7 tracks and that if this was your first class, stopping after 3 or 4 would be a great accomplishment.

Whatever.  Like I am going to stop after 4 tracks.  That could be 1 or more of 3 things that I don’t do:

  1. Looking foolish and being unable to cope with what is in front of me
  2. Missing an opportunity to prove to myself that I am awesome (and letting others know a little too)
  3. Conforming to the persona of being out of spin shape (despite 18+ months hiatus of taking any challenging spin class)

So, there was a guy that left after 3 tracks.  He looked a cliche January-er, but he made it to class and maybe next time he’ll get further.  And that is my honest reaction – I didn’t think he looked foolish, or that he wasn’t awesome or that he was conforming.    I thought, good for you buddy, this is tough.  But then I went back to focusing on me and the *must* of completing the task well.

And I see that all the time in my life.  I like it a lot when my team members are awesome, but I know they can be awesome and make mistakes.  I know that they need to be able to raise their hands and ask for help – and when they do, I don’t think they can’t cope or they are foolish.

So why the double standard?   I don’t know, but I really think we should wear badge sashes at work – I would accomplish so much.

January 14th, 2013 Extra-Ordinary:  You bet I did the class – the whole damn thing and took no easier options (other than tension adjustments sometimes).  I’m awesome, I can cope and I didn’t look foolish (mostly).   I need to lay down now.

The Daily EO: January 13th, 2013

I am looking for a run to motivate my return to healthy exercise and well. . .  running.  I am considering the Vancouver Sun Fun Run, because it is so traditional and so huge and so Vancouver.  And there’s the Grouse Grind, but that is more than I can handle right now, I think.  But maybe that is the point.

But I found this on the internet today:  http://www.colormerad.com/races/vancouver.html

What?  Really?  Who thinks up these things?  Like I am going to do that!

But, hmmm.  Could be interesting.

January 13th, 2013 Extra-Ordinary:  To be rad or fun?  Or both?

The Daily EO: January 9th, 2013

January is three things to the retail world:  White Sales, Get Healthy and Organize Your Life.  Take a look at your flyers: Canadian Tire has all their Rubbermaid bins on sale, Old Navy has their workout gear on sale and the Hudson’s Bay is selling off towels.

And there is something about January that spurs on the clean-out mode.  Perhaps is it the long stretch from now until Spring, or the excesses from Christmas – both food and things – that get us focused on cleaning, organizing, and reducing.  I don’t really know why the white sale traditions in January.  Perhaps it is because you had to burn the sheets unwanted holiday visitors slept on?

I watch Hoarders (the TV show) sometimes and cringe always because I was raised by a consolidator.  (which we think would be a great reality TV show – match up a hoarder and consolidator in one house and see who goes crazy first).   But have you noticed – those who have big houses with lots of space have difficult wrapping their arms around the problem of clutter.   Why?  Because they have been free to live without unfettered for years – free to collect and gather and store without real implications.

I can tell you – as the manager of the warehouse for my company – the same is true in business.  If your business plan calls for a 20,000 square foot warehouse and you have a 40,000 square foot one, watch out!  Soon you will have the thing full and wondering where the next incoming shipment will be stored until needed.

Any mistake, poor system or bad decision without dealing with the ramifications will get hidden in your warehouse or closet.  And you’ll find yourself looking for space to store your necessities.   And while Rubbermaid bins are not going to fix our warehouse, the concept is the same.

Deal with the mistakes, fix the poor systems, review what you’ve got and throw out the valueless.

January 9th, 2013 Extra-Ordinary:  Reenergized by beginning my clean-out plan.

The Daily EO: January 1st, 2013

In my industry of Natural Health Products, I have been able to see first hand the ramp up to support the “New Year, New You” phenomenon.  I’ve written before about how I’ve always seen September as a new start, not January, so it seems a little silly to me.

I hate the gyms during January – classes suddenly full, never can get a treadmill, sigh… all these people clogging up the place.   Please hurry up and lose your commitment, people!

And yet, after 4 months crammed full with stressful and fattening things, I find myself knowing and having to engage in the ritual as so many others will do in North America.  My only solace is in that I can tell myself that I am just getting back into the routine that Emile and I started in Fit April – just trying to figure out how to do it here in Vancouver.  I am certainly not one of the crowd.

Alas, the ordinariness of it, I hate to fit in and yet I need to be able to fit in my pants, so we’ve launched Cliche January.

I’m too embarrassed to tell you the starting stats – maybe after some progress I’ll let you know.

January 1st, 2013 Extra-Ordinary:  Wiping off the remnants of an entire box of Ferraro Rocher from our lips (before the calendar turned over), 17.7 km walk around Vancouver’s downtown and Stanley Park completed.

Will anyone ever see this post, lost in the “resolution” tag?  Sigh.