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A long, slow jog

Monday, June 20, 2011

That's what my son proposed we do on Sunday at 1 p.m. Meet him at the trailhead and we shall go on a long, slow jog. Well, knowing his fitness level, height, age and gender, I figured HIS long slow jog might just be a race pace for his mom.

WRONG. He is working on conditioning. He had not been doing a lot of impact running the past two years. Although he is working on speed, he is mostly working on impact and environment: learning to deal with outdoors and heat and impact. And he's early in the program (first week).

Since I was along for the "ride", essentially, (and because he wanted to show off his technology) he started up his Smart Phone App that tracks your speed via GPS and gives vocal prompts in a voice of your choice. He told me we were targeting 12 to 9 minute miles, and I warned him if it were closer to 9, I'd be in trouble.

However, he also said it was to be an hour, and most of my jogs so far have been intervals (at least since last November), and shorter in duration. It was sunny and warm. You'd be proud of me, I remembered the sunscreen! emoticon And the billed cap. I was prepared.

That silly voice kept telling us to "slow down" in the first portion of the course. We went a half hour out, then turned around and came back. Most of the coming back was at a walk, and it nagged us in the other direction to "speed up" but we were having none of it. Phone apps be hanged, listen to your bodies! We stopped two or three times to stretch, remove gravel from his shoes, etc.

Momly conclusion: Son, you have to invest in better shoes. After our run, we both went to our respective homes to shower, then I took him out to eat and to shop for his birthday present. We got him a good pair of stabilizing running shoes. Hope this helps. emoticon

And we may just do this again next week.

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

KALIGIRL 6/21/2011 1:21PM

    Sounds emoticon
Glad you got him shoes and emoticonon running a half-hour - you are going to leave me in the dust...


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PENNYAN45 6/21/2011 7:44AM

    What a GREAT time with your son! Wow! And how many sons can say they went jogging for an hour with their mom?
Way to GO!!

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WATERMELLEN 6/20/2011 7:23PM

    Just spent about 3 hours chatting with my son: love that mum and son time. Precious.

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MNTWINSGAL 6/20/2011 7:22PM

    What a great day! I'm so glad you and your son got to spend some quality time, and in such a healthy way! And way to go with your choice of birthday present for him!

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KATIE33MAHALA 6/20/2011 6:27PM

    love this story, Its nice that you and your Son can do this together!

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_LINDA 6/20/2011 10:54AM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon
That was a fabulous time with your son! Great job getting him proper running shoes, that is so important! He is lucky to have a caring and concerned Mom! I hope you can enjoy future jogs with him!

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MEDDYPEDDY 6/20/2011 9:14AM

    How nice! I am hula hooping with the daughter and it is really fund to exercise together!

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MARVEEME 6/20/2011 8:54AM

    WTG Mom! They will take him ANYWHERE!

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And on the seventh day, She rested...

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Happy Father's Day to all the Spark Dads out there!

A life with dignity has to include days of rest and relaxation. That's why this effort to "clean up my act" has to avoid becoming marathon / binge cleaning. A life of dignity includes good night's sleep, nutritious meals, healthy levels of activity... and a home that is a refuge, supporting the ability to welcome in people I care about. I'm going to get that home the same way I got to goal weight... one day at a time, with small improvements in daily behavior.

So, all that said, day 7 (yesterday) began with staying up all night. It was my turn to monitor some computer work overnight for work. It went very smoothly... all finished by 7 a.m. Saturday.

This is relevant because sleep is vital to health. I caught a short nap before the phone started ringing. First, my brother. YES! He's coming. In about 3 weeks. And YES, I will be the sleep-over house this trip. So this effort that I started before finding out about this visit is charmingly well-timed.

Second, my niece... she and her mom are returning something to me, will I be home? I have something to give them, too. So, as I was sweeping my front steps (my morning "one thing" for yesterday), they dropped over and we visited for a few minutes, then they went on their errand run, and I finished the steps and went back in for another nap.

I walked to the mailbox to mail in my commitment to join the National Weight Control Registry. Yes, I finally decided that I would take this step. After that, I managed to get yet another nap, and went to bed early. I slept a full nine hours, people... I felt *wonderful* this morning.

This led to today's one thing: I cleared out and vacuumed the guest room. I know, that sounds menacingly like a the start of a marathon, but it really wasn't. The guest room was already relatively clear. But all rooms left unused do tend to gather dust. I bagged up some old video tapes for the trash. So, today's "one thing" has been handled. At least the before church one.

Here's to those small, every day changes, made with consistency, and appreciated, daily. We can do this, and we're worth it. emoticon

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

MSLZZY 6/19/2011 10:45PM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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LOVE_2_LAUGH 6/19/2011 3:17PM

    Your conviction and dedication are awesome, Barb. Way to go!

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KIMA86 6/19/2011 11:39AM

    Thanks for the reminder! In our hurry to reach our goals (whether they be weight loss, work-related or anything else), we often overlook our need for rest. I have to keep reminding myself of that fact.

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Life with dignity, Day 6

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Initial goal reminder: handle each day's mail today.

So far, so fair, I've done it each day. In the process, while thinking just about "today's mail", somehow the piles on my kitchen counter and dining room table have kind of melted away. Decisions I had "put off" became clear in thinking about handling today's mail today. So I can call this week a good one on that front.

I'm adding a couple of small goals to go with "handle each day's mail today." One is "do one thing before work that contributes to living with dignity", the other is "do one thing after work and before bed that contributes to living with dignity".

Cautionary note: Not allowed to have that "one thing" turn into a marathon! No more than 15 minutes to half an hour for these "one thing" activities! And as with the weight management and activity goals, there is a need for rewards to go with achieving these small goals.

As with the weight loss / activity plans, this motivation will take daily pep talks and reminders that "yes! I LIKE my home", and "I'm worth it!"

Here's to a great weekend, folks! Oh, my one thing this morning? I swept my front porch and steps and filled one bag with weeds / cuttings. "Yes, I DO like my home."

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  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

JOURNEYTO60 6/19/2011 1:01PM

    Wow! I love these ideas. It would do us all good to follow suit. I love the handling the mail-I find my mail kind of scary sometimes. And, I love the idea of spending just a little time each day contributing to what is important to us. "Living with Dignity:-awesome! Thanks for sharing.

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MARVEEME 6/19/2011 8:09AM

    emoticon

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MSLZZY 6/18/2011 10:28PM

    emoticon emoticon emoticonWhat a great idea!

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WATERMELLEN 6/18/2011 8:47PM

    Mail strike here in Canada has helped with that problem (LOL). I sympathize with the tendency to ignore tasks OR get engaged in a marathon: what I did in the garden this afternoon . . . moderation works better!!

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OVERWORKEDJANET 6/18/2011 7:38PM

    Argh. My table is plies of papers. Old mail, junk stuff. Stuff I want to file. I have a place to put most of it. This definately is a bell ringer with me. I will try the short time goals.

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SUNNY332 6/18/2011 3:55PM

    I have been doing the same thing today - going though the stack of mail that has accumulated on the DR table. Good idea to make a committment to handle todays mail today.

Off to sweep the patio. Sunny

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LOVE_2_LAUGH 6/18/2011 3:24PM

    You are so awesome, Barb. I need to take notes from you. Somehow, doing 15 minutes of "something" before work and then again after work/before bed, really isn't all that difficult, is it? It's getting in the habit of doing it. I may just try your method -- it has to be better than mine (which is do nothing until guests are expected, and then do a marathon tidying up).

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DEBRITA01 6/18/2011 2:37PM

    I love your living with dignity...we all deserve to love ourselves and maintain living spaces that promote our well-being. Good job on the 15 minute goals...I may steal your idea and set some mini-goals for myself. emoticon

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SWEETMAGNOLIA2 6/18/2011 2:27PM

    Great goals. This reminds me of a team I joined in January, Flylady: Peace is Mine. You might enjoy going to a blog I wrote about it. It has been a fun and successful way for me to reach the same goals. All the best!

Comment edited on: 6/18/2011 2:28:30 PM

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BESTSUSIEYET 6/18/2011 1:28PM

    I'm with you on this one! Told hubby 2weeks ago I can't stand the state of our kitchen table -- having to push stuff aside every night to make room for our plates! Ugh! I have now kept my stuff cleared off every day. He's got a little, but far less than before. I'm trying to handle mail when I bring it in. Have 2 baskets ... 1 for things that need attention on my next day off, the other for "stuff I might want to look at." so far,it's working. Hubby is working on a system for his stuff, and I appreciate the effort!
My "extra something" is turning out to be hand watering some hanging flower baskets. Hubby didn't think the larger pots I bought this hear would get enough water with the old drip system, so I'm needing to supplement them after work. So far, so good. Bye for now ... Need to go press out slacks for hubby to wear to church tomorrow. Enjoy the fruits of your small tasks! That is reward in itself!

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CHRYS13 6/18/2011 1:04PM

    Love it! What a fantastic plan! Here's to continued success and loving ourselves and our homes!

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On the plus side: life with dignity, Day 5

Friday, June 17, 2011

Yesterday I mentioned the "down" side of cleaning up my act, home organization version. I am far from done with this effort, but as with the losing weight and taking better care of my physical health, it's going to take time to get to the balance I desire in terms of shall I call it "environmental health".

It occurs to me that I have in some ways used my "messy" home in the same way I used to use the layers of fat on my body: to push people away! As well as to procrastinate making decisions or admitting to myself how I felt about certain things (can't toss a charity flyer... that would make me a "bad" person, don't you know?)

Here's something that my current efforts are making possible that before would have had me cringing: hosting my brother should he come to town next month! With a few little efforts over the course of even five days, it starts to look do-able, possible, and I hope it works out.

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

REJ7777 6/18/2011 11:57AM

    You've grown in so many ways as a person! As the walls of protective weight have melted away and you've burrowed through walls of emotional intimidation, you're now facing another wall of "protection" that you're ready to let go of. It's not easy to let go of those protective walls. They were built for a reason. And yet, there's fresh air and freedom on the other side of that wall!

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SUNNY332 6/18/2011 8:12AM

    I absolutely believe that a messy home can lead to extra unwanted pounds. Simplifying and cleaning out can lead to renewed commitment to keeping the pounds off too. Way to go, my emoticon!!

Keep up the great work.

Sunny

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_LINDA 6/17/2011 1:02PM

    Good advice given, like everything else, do this one step at a time. Pick the worst area and get it done, one part per day. It would be awesome to host your brother! Like everything else you are putting that amazing mind to, you will get it done!!

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LOVE_2_LAUGH 6/17/2011 12:59PM

    Good luck -- I hope it works out, too!

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MARVEEME 6/17/2011 8:47AM

    AWESOME progress on the homefront! My niece asked me once how I keep my house so organized and clean. I laughed and told her that I took a look at how all those people on the Soap Operas live, and made a conscious effort to mirror their uncluttered and classy living spaces, even though I know it's a set. We laughed at the time, but awhile later she came back to me and told me that the comment stuck in her head and worked for her too. Maybe the thought will help you too. LOL

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KALIGIRL 6/17/2011 8:22AM

    What a cool reward!
I hope he can stay with you.

It's interesting to see how people are so similar yet so different. I'm a can't stand a mess person, but the dust and dirt can be a mile high. (Mom used to wonder where my clothes were only to find the dirty ones stuffed under the bed...)
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MIRAGE727 6/17/2011 8:05AM

    Hey, Cornhusker! My wife is from Lincoln. I had a black hole called a walk in closet. She tells me to tackle one shelf in my closet a day. Guess what? I'm almost done. SO, set a goal of one small area at a time. You can do it as you have done an amazing job getting to your goal so far. Go Big Red!
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MSLZZY 6/17/2011 7:55AM

    emoticonand it will be worth the effort-hugs!

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JOURNEYTO60 6/17/2011 7:42AM

    I hope it works out too! I think it will. I can really relate to this blog! During the school year, I move through my day attending to my job and everyone else's needs. I rarely look at taking care of myself and I certainly spend little time on my house. This summer I took time off to really put myself back on track. I am working on "me" and my house too. Yesterday I had family in town and I could invite them over without a thought about what the house looked like. It was quite a feeling! We are both on the same path this week! Thank you for sharing. It is fun to relate to someone!

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KIAHT6 6/17/2011 7:29AM

    Thanks for sharing

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ELRIDDICK 6/17/2011 7:13AM

  Thanks for sharing!

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WATERMELLEN 6/17/2011 7:13AM

   



Interesting connection: layers of "fat", layers of "mess". You've got me thinking!!





<
BR>



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So let's talk about Day 4 of Life with? dignity?

Thursday, June 16, 2011

So, the viewpoint of living with dignity (not new, long desired, just prioritized recently) is still a bit like "wet paint", not yet established habit. I have to be learning something, right?

On the good front: the work I've been doing with cleaning and de-cluttering has brought me up short against something we all face when trying to change habits. "What's that?" you might well ask. It is, says the sage, finding out that the previous "bad" behavior had some positive use to you!

What possible use could there be in having a messy home? In being ashamed of it? Here's your punch line: it made it easier to brush people off AT THE DOOR, say "No" more firmly, and not waste my time being more polite.

Last night as I was finishing my workout, the doorbell rang. Had it been the telephone, I would have read the caller ID, and if it was someone I didn't recognize, let the machine pick up. I suppose one could do the same with the doorbell... peek out the window or peephole, and if it's not someone you want to see...

But, I was vulnerable, the house was in better shape than it's been for a while, and I was breathlessly full of endorphins and pride (26 sit-ups, people, count 'em!). I opened the door to a fresh faced young man with a very persistent and pushy sales pitch. But he made several errors in his people reading. I must look like a total patsy or something!

I told him 1) I'd never heard of his company (don't panic, I looked it up on the internet, it's a reputable and legitimate one, I just wasn't in the market for this kind of product), 2) I had not seen his signs in the neighborhood, and 3) I was not considering the product for purchase. This should have been a good sign to him that I was not a "real" prospect.

Still he wanted to show me what he'd install "for free" if I'd be his show home... and then spent nearly an hour of my time pulling out slick brochures and describing technology that I have no intention of purchasing! I was curious enough and I like techno-toys as well as the next guy, so I listened to the sales pitch, but when he got around to the attached subscription price I said "It's not in my budget, sorry." Yeah, the initial installation would be "free", the equipment "free", but it would cost $$$ every month for the support services (which are NOT optional).

TANSTAAFL: there ain't no such thing as a free lunch. I had been waiting to hear how much this free lunch would cost. But when I said "no" after he finally disclosed the cost to me, he comes up with "Then why were we sitting here talking about this?" OMG. The young man practically put his foot in my door and forced his way in! I was being polite. I listened to what he had to say. He clearly was ignoring my earlier messages that I wasn't interested. After he came out with that statement, I changed my mind.

His attitude at that point was clearly that I had wasted his time. Well, no. I was a wimp. I allowed him to waste MY time! Why did I do that?

The kicker is, his sales pitch included a lot of scare stories of bad things that can happen, and I ended up with a touch of insomnia afterward. Grrrr! So he wasted more of my time than that single hour.

To pull the balance back the other way... in the face of tossing and turning, I got up early enough to do a treadmill jog before breakfast.

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  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

REJ7777 6/18/2011 11:50AM

    It's so true that our excess weight or messy house serves a purpose, even though it's often an unconscious one. As Dr. Phil says, "What's the payoff? There's ALWAYS a payoff!"

When we figure out what the payoff is, it often frees us to be able to deal with the real issues that can block our progress.

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BESTSUSIEYET 6/16/2011 10:28PM

    You just reaffirmed my policy ... If I am not expecting someone, I don't answer the door! (i very rarely have friends just drop in, so it doesn't really interfere with my social life! Even with a no soliciting sign, I still get people who start with "I'm not selling ..." yeah, right! But ya know what? This is my home, not someone's business, so I don't feel bad about ignoring them. Rest well tonight, and keep that front door locked!

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COMPUCATHY 6/16/2011 9:08PM

    So sorry you had your time intruded on like that. Sometimes it just doesn't pay to be nice...unfortunately. Hang in there! Sounds like your housecleaning is going GREAT! Good for you! Keep up the good work! Spark on! emoticon

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SLENDERELLA61 6/16/2011 4:13PM

    Congrats on the improvement in your home and organization. I hope to follow in your footsteps on that one. Congrats on your continuing success with increasing fitness. Hope to follow you there, too. Now those sales pitches are the pits. Let's see, in the past 30 years I've endured pitches about water filtration, fire protection, knives, cosmetics, time shares, vacuum cleaners, and I'm sure I'm forgetting one or two. The only one I actually bought I regretted. I believe I am swearing off sales pitches. Hope you do, too!

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WATERMELLEN 6/16/2011 3:44PM

    You are waaaaay more polite than I will ever be!! I really resent phone solicitors, door-to-door sales people . . . that is, I resent them if I let them waste my time!!

But then: my house is pretty much always messy!!

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SUECHRIS50 6/16/2011 10:28AM

    I have a good idea for ya!Go to your computer and make a NO SOLICITORS sign like I did!It really works! emoticonSUSAN
P.S=Decluttering your home is food for your soul!!

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MARVEEME 6/16/2011 10:15AM

    Lesson learned. Start keeping the storm door locked, and if you ever open your door to "see who it is" never unlock that storm door unless you're SURE you WANT them inside.



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TURTLETALK 6/16/2011 9:02AM

    I realize that everyone needs to make a living but I really value my alone time and it ruins my day when someone infringes on that to try to sell me something. I hate to say that I tend to be quite rude when it happens.

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KALIGIRL 6/16/2011 8:40AM

    Barb - your graciousness is wonderful. I thought perhaps your visitor was one of the young Mormon men who are visiting Lincoln. They are the ones I have trouble saying no to...

Sorry for the tossing and turning - maybe you were exercising in your sleep?
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MNTWINSGAL 6/16/2011 8:09AM

    I had a similar experience once....with my brother in law of all people! He was going to sell vacuums, and said he needed to practice his sales pitch. I said we weren't in the market for a thousand-plus dollar vacuum. He said it was ok, but could he just use us for practice? It was required by his sales manager. So he came in and demonstrated his product. And we asked all the questions a potential buyer might ask. And when it came time to sign the sales agreement, I said...."ummmm, you know we're not really buying the vacuum, right?" He was mad, asking why we were wasting his time if we weren't going to buy. I reminded him I thought I was being helpful...but I guess people just hear what they want to hear. In my case, he thought he was such a stellar salesman that he'd win a sale. Nope. He was out of the business within a week. Even his own mother wouldn't buy a vacuum.

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HAVE-MERCY 6/16/2011 7:18AM

    Good lesson for us all! You and your time are more important than that. Sounds like you realize that and respect that now. I think others will follow suit. emoticon

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MSLZZY 6/16/2011 7:11AM

    That's one way to de-stress. Sorry you had such a poor experience.

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LEEZAB 6/16/2011 6:57AM

  great post. Very thoughtful! You are doing great! I want to hear more about the decluttering!

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