The Daily EO: February 16th, 2013

I can tell you this – it is much easier to get in exercise and healthy eating when you are not working.  With everything happening in our lives and my demanding job, I let my exercising and healthy diet slip.  Fortunately, I never returned to my high of 176 pounds from a few years ago and can say with certainty that those 15 pounds have successfully been banished.

But also, I have never returned to my low of 152 pounds either because well, I don’t have all day to just focus on me.  So, I try to make sure I run 2 times a week and work out at least once beyond that.

3 weeks ago, I ran/walked a loop from my house up Pender, Main, the Sea Wall, underneath Canada Place and back home on Cordova.

Pathetically, it took me 42 minutes.

Today I did the same loop again and it took me 37.

Okay, okay, it’s not 25 minutes like some can do, but exercise isn’t about anyone else, it is about you.

Trying.  Doing.  Failing.  Succeeding.  All on your own terms.

February 16th, 2013 Extra-Ordinary:  Goodbye 5 minutes.  You’re not coming back.

The Daily EO: January 24th, 2013

I went to a new massage therapist.

I often feel like I have something to prove with RMTs because I never want to complain about the pain. I feel like I should just take it – the pain is good, it is releasing something bad right?  So, I usually suck it up during the rough patches, because I don’t want to be wussy.  (my mother would say “Get some self-esteem, Susan”)

But this new RMT started using elbows on my gluts?  Oh, my god that hurt.  And strong fingers along my scapula?  Wow. How did theose thin little fingers exert so much pressure?   It felt bizarrely terrible and good at the same time.   I didn’t cry out, I just told her later than that was “sure something”.

January 24th, 2013 Extra-Ordinary:  It’s funny what we’ll take if it is presented in the right framework.

The Daily EO: January 21st, 2013

I have a tendency to draw squares with my mouse pointer when I am bored or thinking or unable to do what I need to do.

And that is what I was doing on Monday evening while trying to write the Daily EO.  I was exhausted, I was just wanting to not write it.

It was just then – 9:00 pm – that my husband came in the room, closed my laptop, said “Enough.  You need sleep.”  and turned off the light.   I laid there in the dark trying to get the gumption up to get my flashlight and laptop under the covers.  But before I could, I fell asleep.

January 21st, 2013 Extra-Ordinary:  I like someone who knows best taking care of me – and I am so glad I have Emile to do that.


The Daily EO: January 5th, 2013

I don’t often get sick, which is a good thing.  I don’t deal with sickness well.  I whine and complain and don’t get enough sleep, have endless showers and moan about how I am probably dying.  However, I will share with you my wisdom:

1.  The cold is always the worst first thing in the morning.  It will get better as the day progresses.  You can honestly say, it can’t get worse from here

2. It’s okay to lay down in the shower and let its curing hot water loosen up the phlegm and mucus that is lying around in there.

3.  If you can’t stop coughing, have a spoonful of brown sugar.  It feels so good.

4.  Don’t use anything but plain Vaseline on your angry red nose.  No stinging, just pure relief.  (and a greasy face, but it’s totally worth it)

5.  Stuffing Kleenex up your nose is totally normal and it feels really good.  And it gives you a break from blowing.

6.  Sinuses must be really really big because I can’t understand where all of this . . . stuff is being stored.

7.  Take drugs at night, but avoid drugs during the day – even if they say non-drowsy, they make you feel loogy.

8.  When you are starting to get better, your voice will probably sound the worst.  You can milk this if you need to.

January 5th, 2012 Extra-Ordinary:  On the mend.

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.

The Daily EO: November 8th, 2012

God, I hate running on treadmills.  The sheer boredom of it makes me avoid it.  Yet to head to the streets and run through downtown Vancouver at 6:30 am isn’t going to happen for several reasons.  First, I’m scared of that, and well, it’s too far.  So, I find myself climbing the 2 flights of stairs to get to the building gym discovering that the hill training in Huntsville has spoiled me.  I could run and make no concern about incline, speed, just try to run as far as I could without stopping in the trees, sun and the hills.

I try all sorts of games – think about something else.  Do 10% incline, then 6.0 speed.  Do Sprints, do walking.  Think about work, think about a book.  Listen to music, listen to an audio book.  Something – anything! – to take my mind off how many minutes I have left.

But who am I kidding?  In Huntsville by now, I would be running around the 200 m indoor track complaining to you that I couldn’t possibly go around the same track yet again without falling over.  The snow bluffs make is hard and dangerous to run, so I’d be inside either way.

And this leads me to the human condition.  My gym is well equipped with maintained equipment.  It looks over the Vancouver Harbour off of the 43rd floor.  The walls are floor to ceiling glass and the cardio machines are positioned to look out the windows.

I’m bored looking at this?

November 8th, 2012 Extra-Ordinary:  Ho-hum.  Another day with a million dollar treadmill view.


The Daily EO: October 23rd, 2012

I’ve made the mistake of using Bell Tower as my iPhone alarm.  It isn’t jarring enough – it seems to lull me slowly out of sleep instead of jerking me awake.  But like the gentle tones.

This resulted in me not going to the gym since Saturday morning.  I set my alarm with good intentions, but then I lie in bed and think about England so peacefully while listening to the sounds of the seabus and bells.  Why England?  I don’t know, but church bells make me think of the UK.

So, there I lay, and by the time I get out of bed, I only have 20 minutes remaining for a workout and I think, well, I don’t really have time.

October 23rd, 2012 Extra-Ordinary:  Better to not do it all than half assed.   Time for a shower then.   And a spot of tea.

The Daily EO: August 14th, 2012

Good news, people!  My sports doctor – yes, I have a sports doctor – ahem.  As I was saying: My Sports Doctor says he doesn’t think I have compartmental issues (at least in my legs – I probably have them mentally, but no sports doctor is going to fix that).  As you may recall, I was referred based on shin pain while and from running.  The doctor listened to my symptoms and asked me a whole bunch of questions.  I got nervous and sweaty – I really don’t know why – and tried to answer them to be best of my ability.

I felt foolish – who doesn’t experience pain while running? – if we didn’t, we probably wouldn’t have invented cars.   And it’s wasn’t an obvious traumatic incident with bones sticking out, or crutches required.   And with the Olympics wrapping up, I felt a little silly.  I mean Clara Hughes broke her back and placed 5th in the cycling time trials!  Paula Findley refused surgery on her hip and cried through an entire triathlon!  Tory Nyhaug has his spleen removed to make it to the Olympics!  Oh Poor Little Me.  My shin twinges a little sometimes.  Sally.  Wuss.   No Olympics will I be attending with my lack of grit and fortitude (And I had such a chance at the age of 38).

Apparently, you can’t just go out and start running.  Did you know that?  You can run wrong?  Wha!?  How can I run wrong?  It’s it like eating, sleeping, or any other normal body function that you do?  Well, after reviewing the soles of my shoes and my awkward hallway jogging, it appears that I run too much on the front of my foot.  Which apparently is better than running too much on my heels.  And good news, I am an efficient walker!

All this front foot running is causing my gastrocnemius muscle (the one on the inside of my lower leg) to try to contract and expand at the same time. Hence micro tearing, pain after extended use and couple days recovery.

I’m like a sprinter – not enough like an endurance athlete.  Unless I want to reduce my daily workout to 10 seconds a day – and I do really, but that would defeat the purpose of exercise – I need to fix my running.

Now, I have to find myself a running coach to watch and assist me with running mechanics.

August 14th, 2012 Extra-Ordinary:   Focusing on putting my foot down more in the centre.  This is seriously jeopardizing my ability to chew gum and walk at the same time.

The Daily EO: July 25th, 2012

So as I write this, I am eating some Hersey’s Kisses that I stole from the freezer in the common room at the retirement home.  I mean, seriously, I am stealing chocolate from seniors.  In walkers.  This is an example of the things that I do when I go home.  I eat more, I do less, I apparently steal, and I generally regress.  However, in my defense, I probably would steal chocolate from seniors while at home.

I have one of the best aps for my Android phone:  CardioTrainer.  Like many training aps available, it combines GPS, step counting, maps and my dimensions to calculate distance run and calories burned.  It’s fantastic.  It’s free.

On this trip I was determined to not regress too far.  Sure, I’ll fight with my brother, but maybe I could do alright.  I awake early each morning – thanks to time zone changes – and I have to make a decision each morning to exercise.  And I’ve done pretty good I think.

July 25th, 2012 Extra-Ordinary:  According to CardioTrainer, I’ve run 42.2 kms since we left from Huntsville.  I think that is 5% of my lifetime total.

The Daily EO: June 11th, 2012

A couple of days ago, my husband and I were having a rare lunch out.  I ordered a “Goddess Salad”, chock full of leafy green things, roasted veggies and feta cheese.  After completing my meal, I sat and sipped at my decaf chai tea with cream and sweetener (yeah, it’s weird, but it’s awesome).  I did a “teeth check” with my husband.  You know you all do it – pull back those lips and grin like a maniac to see so your companion can see if there are any stray food bits lingering in your teeth.

He told me I had a “white piece” and a “brown piece” caught in my teeth.  I used my tongue to probe and push, but despite my best efforts, Emile kept telling me the “brown piece” was still stuck on the right of my right front tooth.  I gave up sitting and headed to the bathroom for some serious intervention.

I’ll interject here, and tell you that I hate going to the dentist.  Yes, I know this doesn’t make me unique.  My mother made sure that I had good dental health as a child.  She didn’t seem to care that I hating the scraping, the probing, the needles, the drilling and everything else.  Later in life I have begun to also hate the cost (though covered with insurance most of my life), the inane small talk while my anxiety level rises, the ridiculous “safety glasses” (these are cheap sunglasses – you cannot fool me) and conversation while you are frozen or having 15 instruments in my mouth.  You’d think I’d have gotten used to it by now – 3 retainers, braces, probably 20 cavities/fillings, pulled teeth, filing, etc, etc.  But the dentist still fills me with dread.  It’s the freezing process that is the worse – going in and coming out.  I haven’t seen a needle in decades – because as soon as I get in the chair I keep my eyes closed until they start actually doing the work.  There is a note on my file that says “do not talk to patient after local in”.  Love it.

I always think of two things while in the chair getting freezing:  a torture scene in Alias where Jennifer Garner’s friend is tortured by a crazy man using a dentist drill/tooth puller until the friend gave up info he didn’t actually know.  The other is my friend Judy J who hates freezing so much that she endured having 6 veneers placed on her teeth WITHOUT it.  (having veneers done requires significant prep work to the tooth – including filing and drilling.  What a spine she has.)  I deal with the freezing because I consider these alternatives much worse.

In my adult life, I have learned about the glories of flossing and the pain and suffering that it avoids.  Frankly, whoever invented those one-handed flossers deserves recognition.  Now I can simultaneously floss and read before bed.  Now the dentist tells me that I have “tough gums” and they there is no more cavities, fillings, bleeding or lectures.  I sure wish my mother had told me about this when I was a child.

Even with Emile’s benefits running out this Friday and my desire take as much from his company as possible, I have avoided the dentist.  I drink a glass of water and my teeth ache, I still avoid making an appointment.  Logical considerations about dental health being part of overall health did not sway me.

But when I looked in the mirror at that restaurant and saw that the “brown piece” was actually a 20-year-old white filling that had finally discoloured enough that it was quite noticeable, I made the appointment.

June 11th, 2012 Extra-Ordinary:  Vanity wins out every time.  And as wait to feel my nose again, I know I don’t need to go back for 9 months – if I need to of course.  Please don’t talk to me.