Friday, July 25, 2014
They say the most powerful sex organ is the brain.
I say the most powerful tool we have for making changes in our lives, is our brain.
I was thinking on Wednesday's run " how many times have I done this?" The route I was running certainly but I was really thinking about my efforts to lose weight or change my habits. I couldn't remember exactly when dieting became a regular part of my life but I could remember it being a major part of my life in junior high and high school for sure and off and on through college and my adult life. I suspect, that I had even started to think about it earlier than all that but perhaps I didn't follow any specific plans until my teens when all of the sure fire weight loss plans were available to me in the magazines I read.
Was I successful? Sometimes. Did I make any permanent changes? Sure, I changed my metabolism with all the screwy diets. But mostly, I didn't change in any real ways when it came to eating or living in a healthy manner.
My friend Janet552, posted a blog titled sometimes. In it she spoke of the sometimes things that (as her Dr. would note) she doesn't need but she wants and has increased the sometimes frequency to sometime every day or certainly sometimes every week or more often.
It was Janet's post that was on my mind as I ran because it spoke to me. I don't believe (any longer) in going on sever restriction diets or denying any particular food or drink but rather trying to eat and drink in moderation and truly enjoy the things that might otherwise be off limits on diets. I learned the hard way that saying I would never be able to have pizza or ice cream or chocolate among other desired things only made those items even more desirable
and guaranteeing that given the opportunity to eat the forbidden item, I would over indulge.
The reason I FINALLY had more success here on sparkpeople is that I have not banned anything. Of course another reason is my friends like Janet who have led me through my discovery of my inner workings, sometimes when my friends were merely sharing their own light bulb moments.
But......even with success, I gained weight last winter and I've been ready to put all of the blame on the weather. The weather played a part. It kept me from exercising as much but the real blame belongs on my continuing to enjoy more of the things that should have been "sometimes" things when I wasn't burning as much.
This isn't a new thought really, but you know how it is, we can choose to ignore certain facts or imagine they aren't as important as they are. The mind IS powerful.
Power can be harnessed and used for good as long as we see that we have been deluding ourselves.
Yesterday I gathered my running clothes and placed them at the ready. My plan was to run early, a habit I have allowed to slide.
Again, thinking about the power of the mind, when I was training for a race, I took my training very seriously and on a day a run was scheduled, I would go...rain, snow, heat or cold be d6m8ed! LOL More recently, running for recreational as opposed to training purposes, I have allowed the heat or other excuses to become like the sometimes things that happen most of the time. Just as bad as eating chocolate every day by the way.
Ok, I ran today. It was an ok run. No it was better than ok but I need to get back to running more and improving my endurance and speed.
As I ran, a song appeared in my playlist, you probably don't know it, it's an oldie. Build me up Buttercup. An upbeat song that I have always loved. Today, when I heard the words.......why do you build me up buttercup, just to let me down......I thought about my body and how often I have done this..........and then worst of all, you never call (RUN) baby when you say you will.....
The brain is our most powerful tool.
Friday, July 18, 2014
I worked with a dear friend who was so good at turning a frown upside down. It was a big trip on the rail cars so we brought him in to be chef and I served as his sous chef along with my on board services management duties.
It was one of those trips when the challenges occurred at an ever increasing rate. This was not uncommon on these trips. Using vintage rail equipment comes with almost guaranteed mechanical issues and schedules are seemingly merely suggestions. While prepping for the first breakfast of the trip, I had gone to another car to pull something from a freezer. When I opened the freezer it seemed as though things were not frozen hard, I could hear it running and didn't have time to investigate thoroughly at that moment and thought that perhaps the bartender had been in the freezer looking for ice and hadn't closed the latch tightly. I closed the box and made a mental note to come back as soon as possible to check on it. As it happened, on my return to the kitchen I was working in, my husband stepped in having the dining room ready for business and a few minutes to spare. I asked him to go to the other car with his temp gun and see what he could see....Sure....you already guess it, the freezer wasn't working right, low on refrigerant or something and it was functioning as a simple icebox, holding what cold it could since it was filled solid with frozen food......food that was fast working toward un-frozen. Time to start breakfast service so I assigned two of the other crew members to go pull all the meat out of that freezer and haul it to other cars and other freezers (this of course meant that food is totally scattered among the cars and every prep job was an adventure.) I also had them note those things where the thawing was advanced and bring those things to our refrigerator in the dining/kitchen car. After breakfast service was completed and lunch prep begun, my friend and I sat down with the week's menus to discuss what needed to be used first. This sequence seemed to be repeated over and over again when air conditioning failed and we decided to create lighter meals than had been planned, and of course the refrigeration and freezer issues were found to be a recurrent theme. Days when we were supposed to be tied up over night with passengers supposedly free to eat out on their own never happened. Joey and I would sit down to come up with another plan. Every time we sat down to plan, Joey would say...." where are we...Plan F or are we plan S?" or something equally amusing as we worked our way all the way through the alphabet.
I've been thinking about my pal as I have been needing to move through my own alphabet of plans.
I had been doing the 28 day bootcamp DVD and trying to keep very closely to the subscribed plan. I got 2/3 of the way through the program before I felt that maybe I needed to make some adjustments for my personal age, abilities and needs.
Of course, I first was feeling disappointment at what seemed to be failure on my part. I reasoned with myself that Coach Nicole always encourages a person to do what they can do well and stay at a level if that is right, but it still seemed as though I should push on. I did for a while and continued with my fairly intense cardio routine, but encountered a day when I had to admit I might be over training.
I took a day off. Got back on schedule and again was having a rough time. Another day off, then a day when life got in the way and now I was two days off. I went for a scheduled run and had a lot of breathing difficulty. Was another allergen making an appearance? I had backed off of some of my allergy meds when I thought the worst of the allergy season had passed. I had neglected to take my inhaler with me and my run became driven by heart rate and pulmonary function. As I struggled through the run, I mentally questioned if I had forgotten a dose of my medication for my heart rhythm. I take this med every other day and though I usually portion out two weeks of meds at a time to insure that I don't forget, it sometimes happens. But no, I shouldn't have gotten off schedule. It doesn't feel as though I'm having rhythm issues and usually if I do, my HR reads lower than it is rather than running high. Do I perhaps need to increase my meds to a daily dose? Is something else going on?
Or, is it just one of those runs? And do I really need to re-think my exercise regime?
After the run, I take my BP and continue to check my BP and pulse intermittently over the course of the next couple days. I check the allergy index and Yikes! the mold count is very high...a known allergen for me, guess I need to go back on the other meds. sigh. And I continue to think about plans C,D,E,F................LOL.
Yesterday's run was much better with the additional allergy meds. I didn't note any rhythm issues over the last several days and with the exception of the day when I struggled with my allergies, my BP is consistently far too low to increase those meds anyway, so good thing. I am left with the conclusion that I need to pursue a less aggressive ST program considering my unique cardiovascular situation.
Go with the flow...........on to plan B!
Saturday, June 28, 2014
In a blink of an eye, a good day can go bad or a bad day can go good. More often than not the impetus for change is an emotion.
The other day, while taking a walk, one of those stupid exchanges happened between my husband and myself. I had been talking about a book I am reading, something another person asked me to read as it relates to the lake and our efforts to maintain it's health and beauty. I found the writing style of the author annoying at times which made reading this book tedious but nearly done the other day, I was sharing some of the insights and my feelings and opinions of the content and the style. As an aside, related to the subject matter, I also spoke of some of our lake residents and their actions over the years.
Now, I am a verbal individual. My husband is not so much. I know that but he also is my best friend and also the one who is always there to be my sounding board....sometimes, against his wishes.
As I spoke, he started to have that demeanor that should have warned me that he was not in the mood for my conversation. But I persisted. sigh
Finally he said something in the line of "that's enough".
My reaction? Anger. No, I'm insulted. No, it's really hurt.
When I settled my mind ever so slightly, I said "Ok, what do you want to talk about?" To which he answered "Nothing! You keep talking and you drive me over the edge!"
That helped with my emotions! Now I really am hurt. He wasn't tired of listening to me go on and on about the topic but he was tired of hearing me talk at all!
Now I share this, and I apologize for sharing, simply to demonstrate how emotions flare and in a split second everything seems to change. It was a totally stupid exchange and my reaction....over reaction, was equally stupid. Look, we've been married for 42 years and together long before that. We've had this same argument before and we also have continues to enjoy our conversations and our roles as sounding boards for each other....most of the time. LOL
I can proudly report that my coping mechanism when my emotions flared was to speed up my walking (he hates when I walk ahead of him telling me I always walk too fast) not to anger him, but to work of the steam and since we weren't going to talk to each other I may as well walk alone. Yeah, a bit childish I know, but a quick pace helped to move me past anger, hurt and insult to normalcy by the time I got home.
Action is the antithesis of emotions.....at least it can be.
Why am I thinking or talking about this this morning?
Well, I finished the book that got me stirred up in the first place this morning and then as I headed to the necessary room and my bathroom scale, I was again blasted with an emotional burst.
Groannnnnnnnnnnnn......another day with no weight loss posted. WHY!!! I'm angry! No, I'm insulted! I've been working so hard and I'm hurt to think that all that effort hasn't produced ANY results!
Ok, big glass of water. Walk around the house quietly while thinking about this.
First, it's not about the weight really....well, yeah it is but it's more about fitting into those shorts that got too tight and being fit and energized.
The shorts are still tight but not so tight that they can't be worn.
My last run was actually faster than the last time I had done that route. My last long run was completed much more easily than I expected. I have moments of feeling energized along with moments of unreasonable fatigue which I attribute to the heat humidity and continued allergies.
Finally, write this diary of emotional thoughts...my action to blow off the steam.
In the blink of an eye, I feel better now. sigh
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