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Musings from the 100 Acre Woods

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  • #16
    I've made it to the halfway point of my first week, and I have been able to put down a check mark for each day. One aspect I like about my goal is it's not limited to a specific time of day. I know that there are many who say, with good reason, to stretch right away when you first wake up. And on a normal day, I agree. However, I live in the real world. And on some days, even taking 20 minutes to stretch out first thing, "aint gonna happen." Ever have a morning where your feet are already running BEFORE you get out of bed? Right now, I'm hoping for few mornings like that, since it's summer vacation for both me and my kids. But even so, a phone call is all it takes to derail my best intentions!

    Monday and Thursday were mornings; Tuesday was right before bed; and on Wednesday, I split it up into smaller increments during the day. Whichever way it happened to be, they all worked.

    And I have re-discovered the "Snowball Effect." I'm a Flybaby from way back. One of Flylady's truisms is "If you will just clean your sink, the rest of the counter will soon follow." So I've done four days of stretching which has snowballed into two bike rides on Katy Trail (7 and 8 miles), one evening walk (2 miles), two days food monitoring recorded on Fit Day, and better eating habits in general.

    As we all say in hindsight, "I should have started this a long time ago!"

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    • #17
      WEEK 1 -- 15-20 Minutes of basic stretching
      Monday -- Yes
      Tuesday -- Yes
      Wednesday -- Yes
      Thursday -- Yes
      Friday -- Yes
      Saturday -- Yes
      Sunday -- Yes

      I made my goal for the whole week!! I could tell that I was horribly out of shape and un-limber, because after Monday, I was stiff and sore for the next two days. But by Thursday, things were basically back to normal. One other positive, I'm not nearly as stiff getting out of bed in the morning. Now I'm not ready to LEAP out of bed, but I'm not hobbling to the bathroom anymore either.
      I have also learned to give myself some free wiggle room. Some days I stretched in the morning, others in the evening, and still others broken up throughout the day. I can see advantages to all three options. Mornings get the blood pumping, throughout the day makes sure that I get it all in, and before bed is a nice stretch after an evening walk. All in all, a good week.
      It's not on my official goal list, maybe one week it will be, but I'm also tracking my weight. Last Monday I was 197. I'll weigh in tomorrow morning and see if a little discipline in one area will actually bleed into another.

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      • #18
        52 WEEKS OF ME
        WEEK 2

        This week I want to do some reading. I'm currently working on my Masters degree in education through an online university. So for the past two years, I have not had the time to pick up a personal choice book. As excited as I am about the Masters, I really do miss my murder mysteries. And unfortunately, since I still have two and a half classes to go (Can't wait until December 20th!), it's still not the time for Agatha Christie novels. So, I need something short. It can be meaty, but it has to be short. With too many time commitments, I have also neglected my Bible. Therefore, my goal for WEEK 2 is a chapter of Proverbs every day.

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        • #19
          I haven't written lately, but I have continued with my weekly challenges. And equally important, I have also kept up on the ones that could be.

          So for Week 2, I completed my Proverbs reading for every day of the week.

          I also continued my stretching idea from Week 1. And I'm actually feeling pretty well. In the past when I've seen my chiropractor, she says that my neck and shoulders are ridiculously tight. However, I don't feel it; I think I'm relaxed. To which her comment is, "That's your normal. You never relax." And unfortunately, it's not going to change drastically for the next six months. I'm in summer now, so my teaching load is on vacation, but my Masters classes are still going on. Just two more to go! For the family, Alex is driving, so more on his own, but Erin will still be needing me and the car on a daily basis for two more years. I often feel that as busy as my teaching days are from 8-3, the hours afterwards from 3-8 are just as hectic!

          Anyway, this last time I was at the chiro, she was actually impressed that I was not as tight as usual. It's a good incentive to keep it up on a daily basis!

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          • #20
            WEEK 1 -- Still stretching!
            WEEK 2 -- Proverbs chapter every day

            So I'm up to WEEK 3. For this week, I bought myself something for my classes. I teach Enrichment Spanish at a local grade school, PK4-8th. Over the course of the week, I see about 350 kids from 10 different grades, 2-6 sessions of each, so my paper pile can easily become a nightmare. I was at Office Depot and discovered binder clips in a variety of colors. So I bought A LOT of them, and I have assigned one color to each grade. I have also labeled four in each color, so that gives me two for the current week and two for any ideas I have for the next week.

            PK4 - Brown
            K - Red
            1st - Orange
            2nd - Yellow
            3rd - Blue
            4th - Purple
            5th - Pink
            6th - Grey
            Explore I - Lt Green
            Explore II -- Dk Green

            Now, if you are not a teacher, this may seem like an odd choice, but if you are, you understand completely. Something as simple as controlling the paper will make my life infinitely more calm come August 25. And with the extras, I'll have the correct colors to corral my papers into their correct class, even when I don't have the time to file them.

            Cost -- $30

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            • #21
              Week 1 -- Still stretching
              Week 2 -- Still reading in Proverbs

              WEEK 4
              This past week I volunteered to be a chaperon for our church's youth camping trip. And, yes, I did get my son's permission first! So Friday night I drove six teenagers and a whole lot of gear to Meramac State Park in Stanton, MO. We set up tents, ate dinner and s'mores, and tried to sleep in the humidity of a typical summer in Missouri. Saturday morning, we went ziplining across the Meramac River.

              I have never done that before, so I was a little anxious, but it was WONDERFUL!! It doesn't have the extreme drop or speed of a roller coaster, but you are hanging out there in a little canvas harness. We did two long zips and three shorter ones. The final one was from 85 feet up and a length of 1250 feet, going back across the river. It also didn't hurt that I felt young and wasn't making a twit out of myself in front of 12 teenagers, two of whom were my son and his girlfriend!

              I still have some sore stomach muscles from holding my legs in the correct position, but if President Bush can skydive for his 90th, I can zipline for my 50th!

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              • #22
                Forgot to add in the cost!

                Free! Chaperons did not have to pay.

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                • #23
                  WEEK 1 -- Still stretching
                  WEEK 2 -- Still reading

                  WEEK 5

                  This one was a really good week. We left on Friday for DH's 14th annual family camping trip to Mark Twain Lake in northeastern Missouri. Unfortunately, we only had 13 of us there this year. In previous years, it's been double that number, but the grandkids are growing up, with jobs and their own families' schedules to work around. Now before you compliment me for such a primal vacation, let me set you straight. DH's parents are in their 80s, so we're really at Camp Holiday Inn. We have two large travel trailers with AC, electric and water hook ups, and tables full of BBQ and junk food. And it was extra special since our eldest DD was able to make it up for the weekend. This might be our last family vacation until she gets back from China in a couple of years.
                  So my theme this week was all about camping.

                  1. I went tubing for the first time in about ten years. The driver of the boat did not try to actually kill me like he tried for some of the younger ones, but he did have a pretty good clip going and some great waves to ride through/over/across. And my arms weren't even sore the next day!

                  2. For one of my Masters class assignments, we had to evaluate a free-reading novel. I ended up with the 2nd-5th grade category, so I chose the 39 Clues series. After reading Book 1, I remembered how much I had enjoyed reading them to one of my kids years ago. So I reserved Books 2-10 and took them along. They were just as good as I remembered them, a fast read with continuous action. I have finished the first series, so I'm on to the second one, only 6 books there, and then I'll pick up the third group, 4 in that one. So this one project will last me two or three weeks. This is really the first free-reading I've had a chance to do since I started my program, summer of 2012. It was wonderful to hold a my-choice book in my hands again and get completely lost in it!

                  3. As I said earlier, we tend to have a table of junk food spread out all the time. Last year I said, "What the heck!" and planned on making the week my 20+%. Well, by Sunday morning (only three days in), my wrists and elbows were killing me, so I cleaned up my eating for the rest of the week. This year, I didn't want the same problem, but I also didn't want to be a stick-in-the-mud. So I went shopping. For spaghetti night, I had spaghetti squash. I brought my own dressing, crackers, cookies, and granola. I did indulge a little. My DH makes the most heavenly blueberry coffee cake and dutch oven apple cobbler. But by Sunday afternoon again, my body was telling me to stop. It was a little depressing to be so sensitive after just two squares of coffee cake and one dessert of cobbler (and spread out over a full 24 hours!), but I did stop. I know that gluten-free junk food is still junk food, but it was a yummy indulgence!

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                  • #24
                    Major accomplishment this morning!

                    While I was doing my stretching, I was able to actually grab the toes of my shoes, while keeping my legs straight (out to the sides, not in front). When I started this a month+ ago, I couldn't even sit up straight without bending my knees.

                    There really is something to this stretching thing. Improvement in one area naturally flows to improvement in other areas, often without you even having to do anything else. I've noticed that my back, neck and shoulders don't feel nearly as tight. My chiropractor will be so happy!

                    I've discovered a few other exercise truisms as well (yes, all the things that the books tell you, but you never really follow).
                    1. Do what you like so you stick with it. I hate jogging, running and power walking, but I like regular-paced walking.

                    2. Vary your route so you don't get bored. I used to always walk the exact same streets because I had it laid out in mileage. Well, this is the age of GPS. I downloaded a walking app to my phone, so now I can go anywhere I want and still know my distance. I'm usually 3 miles in an hour.

                    3. Some days I enjoy my stretching and can concentrate solely on it. Other days, well, I really don't even want to do it at all. So I've set our DVR to record MASH episodes. They last 20 minutes, which is the perfect amount of stretch time. And since every day has three or four episodes, I even get to pick the one I want to watch. I love the early ones with Henry, Frank, and Trapper! I watched a Col. Flagg one this morning. It's good to know that laughing is also a valid form of exercise!

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                    • #25
                      WEEK 1 -- Stretching
                      WEEK 2 -- Psalms
                      WEEK 5 -- 39 Clues

                      WEEK 6
                      Good morning Everyone,

                      Last week I added two things to the 52 Weeks list.

                      1. Much to my shame, I have never had an interest in taking care of the "manly" things in the house. I blame it on DH, since he's so good at it. So last week I came up with a list of household things that I thought I should know about. I apologize in advance to anyone who rolls their eyes and says, "You've never done that, and you've been a homeowner for 26 years?!" because it really is an embarrassing list.

                      a. Replace the ink cartridges in my office printer
                      b. Replace the ink cartridges in the den printer
                      c. Learn how to run the anti-virus programs on my laptop
                      d. Locate the main electrical box and flip circuit breakers
                      e. Locate all the main water lines and their shut offs
                      f. Locate the main inside gas line and shut offs, also the shut off outside the house
                      g. Locate main power switch for the furnace/AC unit
                      h. Check the pilot light in the furnace and water heater
                      i. Drive our full-sized van while pulling a 26' travel trailer (I can sort of explain this one. When we do our annual family camping trip, we just rent the trailer, so it's not here all the time. But I was worried that if something ever happened to Tom on the road, I would have absolutely no idea what to do! Now, I'm an intelligent woman, so I'm sure I could figure it out, but I'd much rather have my first time towing be with Tom by my side and in a parking lot.)

                      As you can tell, none of these things have anything to do with major repairs. I just think I should be able to recognize the parts if Tom is trying to give me instructions over the phone. But I was a good student. I wrote down everything he said in a notebook labelled HOUSEHOLD INFO, because, as you know, you only need this type of information once in a blue moon, and I know, I'll never remember it in two years.

                      2. While we were camping, I obviously had some free time, so I turned on my trusty phone GPS and started walking. Since I didn't start on Monday, I set a weekly goal of 10 miles. I was actually able to walk 12, so next week, I'm going to up it to 15.
                      Last edited by Tigger; 07-08-2014, 02:17 PM.

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                      • #26
                        I'm discovering a bad side effect from consciously taking a walk every day. The lazy side of my brain says, "Now that you have gotten in your 2-3 miles for today, you can sit on your butt for the rest of the day." Kind of amazing, in a pathetic sort of way, how easy it is to justify bad behaviors! I can walk 5-7000 steps in the morning, and then maybe a 1000 more the rest of the day. If I'm going to sit, I should at least be working on my homework or class prep for August, but it's not that noble. I'm catching up on way too much TV and internet surfing! Looks like I've found my goal for next week: put myself on a techo diet!

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                        • #27
                          One of the foods I miss since starting PB is granola cereal for breakfast. Does anyone have a good recipe or brand name? It can have a few "sins" because this is not something that I would eat every morning.

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                          • #28
                            I've discovered another snowball effect this week, but this time it's a positive one! With setting a goal of 15 miles this week, I'm also hitting the 10,000 steps number. For once the American Heart Association is happy with me. I have noticed that I'm hungrier with doing more physical activity, so I'm going to have to pay closer attention to the scale and the clothes, but I'll worry about that next week.

                            My 50th birthday is coming up next week, so I'm looking for a delicious primal meal. Any suggestions?

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                            • #29
                              Week 1 -- Stretch
                              Week 2 -- Psalms chapter
                              Week 5 -- Free Reading -- 39 Clues
                              Week 6 -- Walking

                              WEEK 7
                              I don't know if anyone reading this is from the St. Louis area, but one of the distinguishing characteristics of summer in St. Louis is the heat and humidity. Last week's goal of getting out and walking has been going very well, but I discovered I was running out of clothes. So for Week 7 I invested in some exercise clothes. I bought three pairs of shorts, four shirts, and three sport bras. Now I can come home all hot and sweaty, get a shower, and I still have clean clothes to put on, without waiting for the washer and dryer to finish their load.

                              I am also learning that if I don't go right away in the morning, it's a lot harder (and hotter) to go go later in the day or even in the evening. So with clothes and shoes laid out and ready, I'm much more likely to get my butt out the door. That plan is also most helpful when DH is sleeping in on the weekends, and I'm awake and ready to get out of bed at 6:15.

                              The cost came out a little higher than my mentally planned-for allowance, but I'm OK with it.

                              Cost $110

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