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If you're too sick to work... are you too sick to Spark?

Friday, January 28, 2011

When I was a kid, my mom had this rule: if you're too sick to go to school, you're too sick to play. That childhood training kind of lingers even now. It's not entirely true, you know. You can be too ill to be effective at work and still have enough oomph to post something online. But I've also found that when I'm not feeling well, my thoughts don't track well, so I'm not sure I'd trust myself to make sense on line. So, no blog yesterday.

As I generally do when finding myself "not up to snuff", I ran through my check list of "self-inflicted" as a sanity check. This time I found among the suspects:

A night of insomnia earlier in the week (Monday night)
My failed attempt to donate blood on Tuesday (they hooked me up, the blood was flowing too slow, and they had to pull the plug with only about a third of a donation)
A late night phone call that reduced sleep a second night (Tuesday night)
More sodium than normal in the diet on Wednesday... led me to suspect dehydration? I felt really, really thirsty, but I knew I'd had at least 10, maybe 12 cups of water on Wednesday, too.
A co-worker observing that I looked "tired" (I think that was Tuesday, too)
Feeling fatigued and reluctant to even begin my four miles Wednesday evening, but doing it anyway... have I been overtraining?

It is kind of a chicken-egg argument... some of these could also be symptoms of whatever it was, and I could have been "coming down" with it for a few days. I decided the better part of valor would be to stay home and take it easy. So I did.

This morning, better rested, I still have a few of the symptoms, but not enough to keep me home from work.

I only have to get through Friday. Then comes the weekend to recuperate and re-assess. Here's to a better today!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

LINDAJOYWK 1/30/2011 6:21PM

    Once in a while,a little whining is good for the soul ! Besides a few minutes at the computer isn't quite the same as a day slam on at work-sometimes you just want
to hear someone say,hope you feel better!

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SUNNYWBL 1/30/2011 5:05PM

    My Mom also had an additional rule - If you are too sick to get dressed, stay in bed in your PJs. If you feel good enough to watch TV or come to the dinner table, Get Dressed! emoticon emoticon

Comment edited on: 1/30/2011 5:07:27 PM

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MSLZZY 1/28/2011 6:58PM

    Sometimes just expressing it makes it better. I hope that was the case. Get better soon! HUGS!

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CHRISTURTLE 1/28/2011 5:17PM

    Maybe by Sparking you will help yourself feel a little brighter, which I am sure will help. That's my justification, and I'm sticking with it, lol.
Hope come Saturday morning you will be feeling much better. Take it easy over the weekend, ok?

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KALIGIRL 1/28/2011 1:14PM

    Hope you feel better soon.

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TURTLETALK 1/28/2011 12:54PM

    I hope you are feeling better for the weekend!

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ANDI571 1/28/2011 10:40AM

    I hope you get to feeling better soon. I have heard sparking is good medicine. emoticon Haven't you heard, take 2 aspirins, and an 30 minutes of sparking will cure what ails you?


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PATRISNA 1/28/2011 9:44AM

I think your Mom's rule was kind of like the military regulation. When we were sick the doctor "Put you on quarters" for a specified time 24 to 48 hours. That meant you went to your quarters either barracks (single) or home (married). You stayed there until the time was up. You best not even think about going out. LOL

I always told my boys if you are too sick to go to school or work you are too sick to go out after work or school hours.

Hope you feel better soon. emoticon

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    I hope you feel better fast, too! When I stay home sick, I usually justify my things like Sparking because I am home, safe from infecting the rest of the workplace with my germs, and they're very happy I'm home sparking instead! emoticon

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HOT4FITNESS 1/28/2011 9:40AM

    So sounds like some chicken soup, green tea, and some good ol rest for you. Hope you get to feeling better soon!!

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KASEYCOFF 1/28/2011 9:19AM

    Contributing factors and a group of symptoms, thinks me. But I'm glad you were feeling well enough to post a blog today - just keep putting one foot in front of the other, Barb. The weekend is here! :-D

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BUGGYS 1/28/2011 8:43AM

    It's terrible to be sick and I do hope you're feeling better soon. Today is a new day and it's Friday so that's even better! Weekends are always a time to regroup! Get better!

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DEBRITA01 1/28/2011 8:24AM

    The weekend is almost here...hope you feel better and more like yourself.

p.s. I'd have to be pretty sick to not at least log-in on Spark to see what's happening emoticon

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DAISY443 1/28/2011 8:05AM

    Hope you get back to feeling normal soon! Hugs!

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LEANJEAN6 1/28/2011 8:02AM

    Oh I hope that you have a better day to-day--I think you will!----- ThaT SICKNESS IS GOING AROUND-

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Giving the gadget another chance

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Short background for those who missed earlier blogs: The "gadget" is a BodyMedia GoWear fit armband. I was excited to get it wore it two days, arm broke out. Folks gave me some suggestions, some of which aren't feasible (clear nail polish on the metal would interfere with its function to detect electrical conductivity, etc.). Others suggested I take it back... and I am still considering doing that. But first... I just had to give it a second chance.

After the arm healed, I went back and read directions. Went to a website to read all about other people's experience with the arm breaking out. Got some suggestions of things to try, and being me, have been giving the gadget another try.

Here's the list of "caveats":
1. Make sure your arm is completely dry after your shower before you put the gadget on.
2. As soon as done with a workout that produced moisture (sweat, folks, yeah!)... take it off, clean and dry it! After your shower, again make sure the arm is dry before putting it back on.
3. Every so often, disinfect the gadget with isoprophyl alcohol, just as you would your earrings!
4. Don't wear it all the time. The recommendation says max at 23 hours a day... I'm saying for those of us more sensitive... wear it a good deal less. So if I know I'm going to be inactive (like overnight, if I'm not doing a deliberate "quality of sleep" measurement) or watching TV or Sparking... do I really need to have it on?
5. Some other folks have recommended moving it to different spots on the body, even though that's not what the instruction book says. They had "ok" results in using the other arm, and in some cases, a leg. I haven't tried this yet, but reserve it as an option.

All that said, I'm giving it another shot, and have been wearing it since Saturday again. So, four days, no breaking out... being very, very careful.

Wish me luck... I'll post what it tells me another time.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

KASEYCOFF 1/28/2011 9:27AM

    Like anything else, it seems a matter of trial-and-error. I'm hoping you have the problem solved - fingers crossed that you'll be able to keep it. I think you're right about choosing when to wear it and how to get the best use out of it. Just keep experimenting! :-D

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SLENDERELLA61 1/27/2011 6:05PM

    I just looked up your gadget and it looks fascinating. Wish I'd known about it before I bought the heart rate monitor I just purchased. Oh, well. Best wishes. What great info you will get. Be sure to let us all know how it works out for you. -Marsha

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SUNNY1432 1/26/2011 10:24PM

    I hope it can get it to work for your without the break outs:) emoticon

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KALIGIRL 1/26/2011 10:09PM

    Good luck - can't wait to learn what it 'tells' you.

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MSLZZY 1/26/2011 3:36PM

    That's the way to do it! HUGS!

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SUNNY332 1/26/2011 2:26PM

    Good for you. Glad you got some good ideas and they seem to be working.


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    So, what does this gadget DO? What does it record? emoticon

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HOT4FITNESS 1/26/2011 8:52AM

    Good for you!! I hear that is a great little gadget. Lets hope we wear it well with no breakouts

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RHCOOKSON 1/26/2011 8:24AM

    I'm glad I read your blog. I'm allergic to many metals, and haven't been able to wear watches for years because of it. I'd been interested in this gadget, but it hadn't occurred to me that it would have a metal backing as well.

Do you wear watches? Have you had trouble with them, or other jewelry? It is possible that you may have some metal allergies.

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DAISY443 1/26/2011 8:16AM

    Good luck with that! Try not to sweat when you're doing your cardio-lol!

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REJ7777 1/26/2011 8:11AM

    Hope it solves the problem! emoticon

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Majority Rules Checkin

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

I started tracking this "have at least a good day, 6 times a week" goal at the beginning of the year. It kind of started as a measurement of whether how I felt about each individual day contributing to how I felt about the week, the month, etc.

What I found was that the mere action of thinking about and tracking whether the day was "great", "good", "so-so", "bad" or "terrible" has led to an interesting internal phenomenon. Like the "quark theory" in physics, the belief system of the beholder influences the observation!

I've found myself calling almost all my days "good". Even the mega-stressful ones had SOME good element. If I handled the stress without having regrets after, the day was good. Similarly, very few days have risen to "great" in my eyes. Even the ones where I totally ate right and exercised: this is kind of "normal/good".

So... bottom line, not sure how well this is working, as the experiment is influencing the results. But maybe, just maybe, that's a "good" thing?


  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

KASEYCOFF 1/28/2011 9:29AM

    Yep, I totally agree with that. Attitude, perception, positive thinking - all a matter of choice. We can't always determine what Life throws at us, but we can control how we react to it. IMHO

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KALIGIRL 1/25/2011 10:40PM

    Here's to your positive attitude and good days!

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MOMOF2TONI 1/25/2011 9:19PM


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DEBRITA01 1/25/2011 5:53PM

    I think we can find the good in any day...if we look hard enough. It's all in the mindset and you seem like a positive person. Glad you're having *good* days!

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REJ7777 1/25/2011 4:33PM

    Yes, I think that it's a *good* thing. emoticon

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BUGGYS 1/25/2011 4:11PM

    I think tracking your days is a great thing and keeps you mindful of what you are doing and eating...and if you end up with a great day, a good day, a whatever day, it keeps you in the moment! emoticon

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ANDI571 1/25/2011 10:27AM


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WISEONE68 1/25/2011 10:06AM

    It is hard to measure "good" unless you put some parameters on it...i.e. exercise, eat right, no melt-downs, etc.

However, in the great scheme of things...a day where I wake up, have another opportunity to serve my Lord, and don't hurt or harm anyone else...that is a GOOD day!!!

Blessings and peace as you strive for your Good and Great (remember, the "enemy of great is good"--Jim Collins from his book "Good to Great")

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LOVE_2_LAUGH 1/25/2011 9:55AM

    I really do believe it's all about our attitude and mindset. Now that you're focussing on that, you're finding it easier to have those good days. Same with me, for the most part, with regards to my "just for today" attitude. With the exception of my "blip" over the weekend, that mindset just sets me up for success. I'm glad you're reaping the rewards of tracking your days! Carry on . . .

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SUNNY332 1/25/2011 9:33AM

    What a great idea. Knowing you are going to "rate the day" helps motive a better day (or expectations). You go, girl.

Hugs, Sunny

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    Hurray! That is an emoticon thing! emoticon

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DAISY443 1/25/2011 8:04AM

    I think the fact that "great" days are few and far between make them all the more special. If "great" was every day, we would have little to strive for! Thanks for another thought provoking blog!

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Pondering the stones

Monday, January 24, 2011

While on my little trip last weekend, I happened into a gift shop, thinking about the folks back home on my little work team. I was looking for something that wasn't junk, wasn't too cheesy, and also fit in the budget. Didn't want to play favorites, either.

What reeled me in like a collection of magnets was a box of "Ponder Stones". These are obviously manufactured, but they are slices of stone, with words engraved in them. They are flat, oval shaped. Kind of reminded me of the Jenny Craig "Touchstones", but the words were different.

I bought five, with the following words:

All these words speak to me in some way and are my wishes to my fellow human beings. Not wanting to play favorites, I had the staff put them in their little gift bags, and when I got back to work, had each of my team pick a bag, leaving one leftover for me (yes, I do "gift" myself).

I do believe in karma... and sure enough, each woman on the team got something particularly meaningful to her. And what, you may ask, was left in the bag I was holding?

"Breathe". And for me, too, this was the perfect word after that hectic weekend. If you were to pull a stone from a bag with a positive message in one word, what would yours say?

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

REJ7777 1/25/2011 4:40PM

    It's a great idea to give yourself gifts! emoticon

My stone would say "grace". It would be based on the Bible verse: "And of his fulness have all we received, and grace for grace."

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THIAGRAM 1/25/2011 3:09PM

  I would say "Christ". That is hope, faith, love, charity, believe, freedom, peace and joy all wrapped into one word! Thanks, Barb!

emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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KASEYCOFF 1/25/2011 5:36AM


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KALIGIRL 1/24/2011 10:00PM

    Joy would be mine - love the creative aspects of the word...
Also think breathe was perfect for the snow...

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WALKINGANNIE 1/24/2011 4:53PM

    Definitely Hope

(and not gall or kidney - both of which have caused problems for me!)

Sounds like a really thoughtful gift selection Barb.


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MOMOF2TONI 1/24/2011 4:07PM

    Love this blog. emoticon

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MSLZZY 1/24/2011 12:33PM

    Perfect for you!
I think I'd like a stone that just says "Believe"!

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ANDI571 1/24/2011 10:58AM

    I think my stone would be "Faith". I have to have enough Faith to know God is at my side leading and guiding me. I also have to have Faith, to know He is taking care of my family, when I just have to let go.

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    Mine would say, "REST"!

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LOVE_2_LAUGH 1/24/2011 9:24AM

    Mine would say "believe."

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CAPECODBABE 1/24/2011 9:07AM

    Today I would say LOVE, for many reasons.

I have a wooden sign with the word BELIEVE hanging over my writing desk. Many times I look at it and gain strength

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DAISY443 1/24/2011 8:38AM

    My word would be "grow". No, no, not physically, but emotionally, spiritually, intellectually! Thanks for the thought provoking blog!

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BUGGYS 1/24/2011 8:37AM

    My stone would say Love because if you cannot love yourself, none of this would be possible! Great blog! emoticon

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DEBRITA01 1/24/2011 8:33AM

    I would like mine to say Believe...all things are possible, if you believe.
Loved this blog...

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WISEONE68 1/24/2011 8:30AM

    I LOVED this blog. What you did is so "me." I do things like this all the time.

My word for this year would be TRUST. I must trust that God is going to fulfill all that He plans for my life and pray for His will to be done, not mine.

Backstory: A few years ago, right before I took a new job with the same organization, a co-worker had purchased gifts for me and the other managers on her level. She had bought some little ceramic angels who were all holding a "globe" with a different word. She wrapped them all (much like you did) and then allowed us to choose our own gifts. I chose the angel with the word "FAITH". I had been dealing with that for a long time--faith in God's plan for my life, faith in others, and faith in myself. It was a great year and I was glad for the confirmation through a tiny Christmas gift!!!

blessings and peace to you--and remember to BREATHE!!!


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DONNALYNN22 1/24/2011 8:09AM

I mean REALLY LIVE...not just exist, not just be. For too many years lately I've gone through life, doing what was necessary or asked of me. I didn't say "NO", which left little time for me or MY living.
I vowed to change that and so New Years Day I began to LIVE. I'm eating right, moving more, saying "YES" only when I feel it is right for my selected new path.
And my hubby and I have taken time to go on a few day trips to places we can relax, recharge, learn and connect.
It has made all the difference. emoticon emoticon
THANK YOU for the opportunity to ponder it all.
Blessings, Donnalynn emoticon

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SUNNY332 1/24/2011 7:58AM

    I would like for my stone to say Wisdom. I actually choose a word every year to focus on for the year and this year, I chose two. One is Knowledge and the other is Grace. With these words, comes wisdom so I am on the right track. I am currently working on my vision board to reflect my yearly goals which include my words.

Do have a Marvie Monday. Looks like you have sunshine in Nebraska. How great was it that the New Miss American is from Nebraska - first time in the Miss America pageant history. emoticon

Huggers, Sunny

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What a difference a week makes

Sunday, January 23, 2011

A week ago, swam here:

Today, 103 minutes of shoveling this:

Now, on to the treadmill and the football game!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

SAMI199 1/24/2011 6:03AM

    That is wwhy I hate to come back from vacation-lol.Stay warm!

emoticon emoticon

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MSLZZY 1/23/2011 11:30PM

    I know the feeling and no pool in sight!

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DEBRITA01 1/23/2011 6:36PM

    I'm with Andi...I choose the first photo. We are going to get some more of the latter Tues/Weds. I'm still thinking Spring...

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MOMOF2TONI 1/23/2011 4:55PM

    Gorgeous pics!

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ANDI571 1/23/2011 4:09PM

    I pick the first picture.

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WALKINGANNIE 1/23/2011 3:45PM

    Amazing contrasts!

Hope you enjoy the game and the right team wins.


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LOVE_2_LAUGH 1/23/2011 2:19PM

    I can't wait to be looking at the top photo in person by Saturday! Sure beats this "winter wonderland" we live in. Whoever coined THAT phrase?! LOL!

You had lots of good cardio shoveling the snow. I guess if we have to live with it, we may as well find something good about it, right?

Enjoy the football games and if you could cheer for the Packers, I'd sure appreciate it!

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MNTWINSGAL 1/23/2011 1:51PM

    That's a lot of be careful!

I should actually take some photos to document this winter too! It's really been something!

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PENNYAN45 1/23/2011 1:47PM

    A study of contrasts! Enjoy the game!

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SUNNY332 1/23/2011 12:59PM

    My, my, my - looks like my neck of the woods. The difference - it is still snowing here so haven't shoveled yet.

Enjoy the game.


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KALIGIRL 1/23/2011 12:56PM

    Mine took only 90 minutes, but I sure was glad I shoveled yesterday and it was light.
Enjoy the game.

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DAISY443 1/23/2011 12:41PM

    Weeelllllll, the only good thing I can think of about that is the cardio you got from it! Take care!

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46SHADOW 1/23/2011 12:40PM

    Its beautiful! what a contrast. right now its -38 C here. Too cold!

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