Sunday, October 23, 2011

8k run!

I ran over 8k yesterday!  I didn't intend to run 8, I figured it would be about 7.  But I was running in Orangeville with my husband, who was timing our intervals.  He claims he added incorrectly (I still think he maybe tricked me!), and we did 13 minute intervals instead of 12, which means that we ran 4 extra minutes which is about that extra kilometer.  I am not a fast runner for anyone doing the math--I know it, but I'm not really running for speed at this point.  Even if he tricked me, it was nice of him to run with me, instead of at his natural much faster pace. 

Even more remarkable is that I did it on legs that felt so heavy when we started out.  The first couple of km didn't feel so great.  But I was fine once I got into it.  My heavy legs were heavy from my 7k run on Thursday, which as you may recall I did after not running for a week.  And this morning I have kind of twingy knees.  I forgot to rub Traumeel on them last night.  But I will today and then they'll be fine.  I am not running or walking today, no point in aggravating my knees, or ending up with an injury.  Maybe some gentle yoga.

Shimmy has a basketball skills "camp" on Saturday afternoons, which is run by our friend, Jackson's former coach.  So we decided to run while he was at the camp.  That's the kind of multi-tasking I need to get better at.  Instead of sitting for 2 hours, get in a run.  Of course, that's assuming that I would have been sitting, when really we would have been running errands.  And getting my mom a birthday gift--which I forgot to do yesterday, so I will need to head into town today to get one, before her birthday dinner today.

And did I mention that we are going to Eastside Mario's?  Which means YUMMY pasta!  I realize that my life might be a little sad, I soooo excited to go out for pasta.  It's because I rarely eat the stuff, but I love the Firecracker Shrimp Bowties.  And I'm going to eat a huge amount of caesar salad first.  And even some of that delicious bread.  I'm getting a serotonin high just thinking about it!  Hey, maybe that's the key to missing the sunshine and feeling low in serotonin--dream about eating huge pasta could be a dietary revolution!

On a more serious note, my deepest condolences go out to the family of Kale, the young man who collapsed and died during last Sunday's marathon in Toronto.  I read an article in yesterday's Toronto Star, and it said that a doctor who was spectating immediately started CPR when he collapsed.  Sadly Kale did not recover.  Stories like that make me feel so sad for the family.  And it gives my mother fodder for reasoning why I shouldn't run (or whatever exercise).  But 1 out of 22000 runners are really not bad odds, and I'll take my chances with running.  I suspect that young people who die during athletic events would have collapsed anyway, I believe they likely had a heart issue they didn't know about.  Kale's family is still waiting for autopsy results, but in the meantime, I wish them peace in their grief.

I'm not running today, but I need to get some work done on either my course, or my progress reports.  And now is the perfect time, while the house is still sleeping.

Have a wonderful Sunday.   

Saturday, October 22, 2011

finding time

I have a confession.  I only ran one day this week.  And I only did yoga one day this week.  I'm trying to be ok with it, it's definitely more challenging when Rick is on afternoons.  I am feeling overwhelmed with the course I'm taking (worth it, but it's alot on top of school), and the progress reports I need to start writing for school.  Both boys were very busy with sports this week.  It doesn't leave much time. 

I'm very grateful to my hubs for leaving suppers in the fridge for us.  It makes my life easier, just coming home, grabbing supper and leaving the house again.  But I'm still feeling the time crunch.  I've come to the conclusion that there really is no choice on some days, but to get up earlier and run or do yoga, or lift weights before I get ready for school.

I know that this is the solution.  However, I am finding it difficult to motivate myself to do it.  Staying in my warm, cozy bed with a kitty curled up against me is so inviting on these cold mornings.  Why would I want to crawl out of coziness into the coolness of early morning?

Because if I want to be fit and get any exercise, that`s just how it`s got to be.  There aren`t enough hours in the day, so I need to create some more.  45 minutes earlier is not going to kill me.  I know it will actually make my days smoother, relieve the stress and make me a happier person.

As we move into cooler, darker fall days, I have to say I`m feeling the effects of not enough sunshine already.  Vitamin D drops may help, but it`s not the same as actual sunshine.  I am looking forward to going to the south at Christmas to get some sunshine.  Already, yet I know that is not the total solution.  Maybe I should move somewhere where the weather is like what southern Ontario experienced on Thanksgiving weekend.  That was perfect.  It`s amazing how we humans are so impacted by the light, or lack thereof.  If sunbeds didn`t cause melanoma I think I`d consider it--I`m like an addict craving a high!

I`m sure the waning sunshine is part of why I`m struggling with diet right now.  I`m craving carbohydrates like crazy.  The thought of donuts and cookies and cakes sets my heart aflutter.  All the stuff that my body doesn`t do well with--if I give in, I pay up.  It impacts my whole system, my hormones, everything.  Obviously all is not well internally.  Waning serotonin?  Is my brain craving carbs to help to replace serotonin?  Quite likely.  It would be the appropriate physiological response.  So a little research into how to avert the cravings, and yet still not crash.  Did I mention I'm rereading "The Hormone Diet"?

How are you dealing with the changing weather?  Anyone feeling the same cravings and lethargy?  Anyone wishing for sunshine?

Sunday, October 16, 2011

The basement chronicles

I spent literally hours in the basement cleaning and sorting yesterday.  And I'm not nearly done.  I unpacked several boxes from when we moved into this house 4 years ago.  Funny how I never procrastinate with tasks that involve only brainpower, but this....well, now I have more stuff to decide what to do with.  I made a big pile for the dump.  And feel ill with guilt.  Junk for the landfill?  But it is irreparable.  And much of it is junk I inherited from my grandmothers' homes after their passings--because I couldn't let it go to the dump.  And I have serious hoarding tendencies.  I did find Jessie's birth certificate that's been missing for 4 years.  But it's been replaced.  So I saved it to prove to her that I didn't really lose it, just packed it.

There is a lot of stuff that will go to the Salvation Army Thrift store as well, and lots of stuff for recycling.  I'm trying to get past that pile that's headed for landfill.  I have boxes and boxes books.  None of the thrift stores will take books, the second-hand stores don't want them, I guess they'll go into recycling.  Which seems wrong.  But what else can I do with them?  If anyone knows of a place that will take books, please let me know.  I've held onto these for 20 years (or more) collectively, because I didn't know what else to do with them.  But I need to get them out of my house, or when I'm 60 I will end up living in a house piled floor to ceiling with stuff, and will have to crawl over it to get to the kitchen and bathroom and will end up having social services come and declare me unfit for independent living.  And then when the clean-up crew comes to empty the house, they will find Rick buried and decaying under piles of stuff.  And I won't be able to tell them the last time I saw him because I will have been so worried about caring for my 20 cats and 15 dogs. 

A dramatic little scenario, but I'm sure this is where it starts.  So if you know who can help me out with the books, I think my husband will thank you.  And I'm making him give the huge box of my dad's books back.  I don't need it in my basement.  They can recycle them.

I still have lots of stuff to sort.  I have so many board games that my kids will never play again.  Those will go to school.  I have boxes of teaching resources to sort and purge.  If I haven't looked at it or used in the last 5 years, it's going.  I will never use it again.

Guilt aside, purging "stuff" is very freeing.  It feels like a weight has been lifted.  It's my goal to create a gym area in the basement, a decent place to lift weights.  The treadmill is down there, and now that's it's cleaner, I won't raise my blood pressure when I'm running on it and will want to use it more.  I'd like to get some of the cushiony square tiles for that area.  I don't know that I will ever have a yoga area down there, it's not that peaceful feeling as it is, but a spot for other exercising would be great.

So while I didn't get to yoga yesterday, I did get a kind of yoga feeling.  Less stuff creates peace.  And today I'm going to make Rick help me finish, so that it's truly peaceful feeling.  Once it's finished he'll have peace too--because I won't be nagging him anymore :)

Have wonderful Sunday.  It looks like a nicer day today than yesterday, hopefully nice enough for a long run.

Saturday, October 15, 2011

free time??

I have awoken to a strangely unusual day.  I am alone in my house!  For hours I will be alone.  I can't believe it's actually happening!  Jess stayed at school, Jackson has gone to work, and Rick and Seamus have headed to my parents to split and pile wood.  And I am at home.  Just me and the critters.  And my course is locked for the weekend and I can't access the looming progress reports.  What am I going to do???

Well....I've already wasted time watching Will & Grace reruns, and cruising blogs.  Mostly blogs about happy homemakers with beautifully decorated homes.  Which kind of make me gag a little.  I love crafting and decorating, but I simply do not have the time that I did when I was a SAHM.  And the blogs I'm reading are those of SAHMs or those that work part-time (often from home).  But they are fun to read and get inspiration, if I ever get the time. 

I've started rereading The Hormone Diet.  I need to clean up my diet (I'm always saying that, I know).  I've not been exactly doing what is best for my allergies or my hormones.  Time to get it together! I do not want to end up getting sick because I'm eating sugar.  And it's unfortunately that time of year.  I've added a couple more supplements, and it just doesn't make sense to spend a fortune on supplements, spend hours running and going to yoga, only to eat food that doesn't benefit me.

So today, I am planning to do the neverending pile of laundry, make me-friendly soups for lunches, clean up the basement so I can stand to run down there (it's disgusting and I don't like running outside in cold and wet, I need to use the treadmill), and maybe do some yoga.  I would also like to preview the boot-camp dvd I bought in the summer--I need to kick fitness up a notch.  How about that?  A whole to-do list that doesn't have either coursework or schoolwork on it!  It feels like luxury!

And maybe I'll get the Toronto Star when I'm at the store.  And read it in absolute peace.

If I'm going to accomplish my non-academic to-do, I'd better get going.  I have a pile of supplements to take, and a basement to tidy.

Have a wonderful rainy Saturday.  And if you're running the Scotiabank marathon today, I'm sending good thoughts and positive energy today.  But you won't know that, because you're running in the rain, not reading my blog.  But I'll do it anyway.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

B12 and minerals

I had a visit with my naturopath today.  And got my blessed B12 shot.  I got a double shot.  I feel perkier already, which is a good thing.  And I also found out that my sodium/potassium balance is out of whack, and was prescribed a mineral supplement.  It explains the incredible thirst of late, and is likely a direct result of all of the sweating when I'm running.  *sigh* I look like either a hypochondriac or a drug addict with the amount of supplements I take.  I'm glad that I feel better from them!  I'm hoping the mineral supplement will help me to feel more myself.  I know the B12 will!

I finished the final assignment for this 1/4 of my course.  Which means some free time this weekend!  I'm finished IEPs, and this 1/4 of the course, and I'm ready for a break.  Finally some time to do some planning for the next few weeks.  Which will make the days go by better.

Enjoy the full moon tonight...

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

legs of...lead?

I am whupped.  Yes, whupped.  I ran tonight, only a short/easy run.  It was like running on legs of lead.  Soooooo heavy.  Every step was heavy and kind of painful.  But this is likely because of a vigorous yoga practice last night, in which I really stretched my legs.  And the huge (for me anyway) number of kms I logged last week.  I ran about 20 km in total, and walked (good pace, no strolling) about another 15 km.  I'm finding it difficult to get enough runs in, and I try to make them count when I can.  Tonight was purely because I felt I had to.  It was raining, so I was in the basement (my sons are slobs!!  Sorry guys, but that basement is a sty) on the treadmill.  Even watching tv didn't help.

I realize that I'm trying to cram too much into my life.  Everything is a race.  Writing IEPs, planning for students, working on my course (which is not exactly enjoyable, I don't like my online classmates as much as the last Spec Ed course I took...another story entirely), trying to fit in some family time and some yoga.  It seems neverending.  But I will survive.  That's what I do best.

So I am off to bed.  For a much needed sleep.  I will rub a little Traumeel on my calves, take my Gaba and crawl into my bed.


Saturday, October 8, 2011

How Grains Are Killing You Slowly

How Grains Are Killing You Slowly

Check this out! When you get up at 3:15 for the day, you tend to have lots of extra time for doing a little web research/reading :)

eagle pose update

I still can't do eagle arms.  I am learning to live with it.  I can many other wonderful poses, so I guess it's ok!

On the skunk front, Pépé Le Pew has not made an encore appearance.  And my house smells a little less like skunk.  The wonderdog may have a very slight skunky odour, but I think I'm ok.  I did ask my colleague I was carpooling and spending the day in the meeting with if I smelled, and she told me just ever so slightly.  But only in the car.  Sitting in the meeting at the board office, every once in a while I would get a whiff of skunk and was mortified to think that someone else might smell my skunkiness.  Like my boss who was right next to me.  But I guess it was ok, because no one was wrinkling their nose or gagging.

The dog and I had a stern chat about leaving those black and white creatures alone.  I think she understood.  At least she wagged her tail and tried to lick my face.  And she seemed grateful that the other dogs we met on our walk yesterday were nice to her even if she did smell a bit.  Curtailed the bum sniffing, they were too busy sniffing her face and chest and giving her the, "oh, man that totally sucks, is your human pissed?" look.  I think she told them it was ok, she had me trained.  And she gets a shiny new collar, since the last shiny new collar (which actually isn't shiny, or new, or even very clean), reeks and is heading to the garbage.  Something that will coordinate well with her bright pink tag.  Maybe black leather with studs.  She is totally badass don't you know?!

Today is a run day!  Actually it was supposed to be yesterday, but it was absolutely beautiful for a walk, and since Seamus agreed to come with Chase and I, that's what I did instead.  He's decided he would like to do some fartleks and also work on endurance.  His basketball coach told him he needs to build up his cardio, he will be counted on this year as a kind of lynchpin of the team.  Which I think totally made his year!  So good for his self-esteem, since he loves sports.  And it's always nice to be special to someone other than your mom.

So anyway (a little sidetracked there...) he would like to do some running with his dad and I!  I am excited.  I'd love to have his older brother, who is totally built like a long distance runner get into running too.  But I don't think that's in the cards right now.  Maybe if he thought it was the complete opposite of what I'd like?  I am serious about passing good eating and exercise habits on to my children.  I want a lifetime of health for them, and not have to work so hard to cultivate it the way I do.  I would like it to just be a part of regular life.  The way it should be.

I will leave you with this quote that I came across on facebook (thanks for turning me onto the page Lisa B!): 

You're a runner and it is for this reason that you should feel free to revise the "skills" section of your resume with the word: BADASS! -Running Ninja! Human Resource Center

I'm working on my resume next.....

Friday, October 7, 2011

eagle pose

At my very beginner yoga class (I usually do the more advanced versions of poses, much to the chargrin of the less bendy ladies), we did eagle pose the other evening.  I can do the legs.  I can stay balanced.  But eagle arms elude me.  My shoulders are fairly open.  I can open my heart and stretch my back.  But my arms refuse to move in a way that would allow them to do eagle arms.  I just watched a "curvy" yoga tutorial hoping for some help.  No luck.  I'm not curvy, maybe I'm just too wide through the shoulders?  After all, not many linebackers are standing on the sideline doing eagle pose before the big game.  And I kind of have linebacker shoulders.  And muscular arms.  I am going to keep practising, because it seriously ticks me off that I can't do a pose.  And even though I'm working on it, I am competetive.  Mostly with myself, and this will just not do.


Garuda = the mythic "king of the birds," the vehicle of Vishnu. The word is usually rendered into English as "eagle," though according to one dictionary the name literally means "devourer," because Garuda was originally identified with the "all-consuming fire of the sun’s rays."

Step by Step

Stand in Tadasana. Bend your knees slightly, lift your left foot up and, balancing on your right foot, cross your left thigh over the right. Point your left toes toward the floor, press the foot back, and then hook the top of the foot behind the lower right calf. Balance on the right foot.

Stretch your arms straight forward, parallel to the floor, and spread your scapulas wide across the back of your torso. Cross the arms in front of your torso so that the right arm is above the left, then bend your elbows. Snug the right elbow into the crook of the left, and raise the forearms perpendicular to the floor. The backs of your hands should be facing each other.

Press the right hand to the right and the left hand to the left, so that the palms are now facing each other. The thumb of the right hand should pass in front of the little finger of the left. Now press the palms together (as much as is possible for you), lift your elbows up, and stretch the fingers toward the ceiling.

Stay for 15 to 30 seconds, then unwind the legs and arms and stand in Tadasana again. Repeat for the same length of time with the arms and legs reversed.

A little tutorial I swiped from Yoga  Thanks Yoga Journal.  Just in case you really wanted to know what the heck Eagle was.  It's actually Garudasana.  Just in case you needed to know the Sanskrit name.

Anyhow.....other than my disturbing inability to master garudasana, yoga was great.  And running has been pretty darned good too!  I timed my 5k on Wednesday, and I've shaved 3 minutes off of my race time.  Yay me!  Last night I had a tweaky knee, so I chose to walk the 5k and take Chase the wonderdog.  Which is a nice segue...

I am a lucky lady.  My dog defends house and home from all kinds of intruders.  Including skunks.  Yes, as is typical for a skunk spraying, Chase got sprayed last night.  I have a serious snootful of skunk.  I can't smell anything else.  And after I sent Rick to the store for some peroxide, I made a homemade skunk-smell removal thingy and was bathing the poor doggy on the deck, in the dark and cold.  The good news is that the dog doesn't seem to smell skunky.  The bad news is that the house smells like skunk, and I'm going to a meeting at the board office today.  And I'm not convinced that I don't smell like skunk.  Nice.  At this rate I'll make director!  I have candles burning, windows open (and it is NOT warm out at 6:45 a.m., let me tell you!), and I keep smelling myself to see if it's me.  But to be honest, I think I'm going to get sick from inflammation in my sinuses from snorting up so much strong smell last night.  You see, scent allergies apply to skunk scent too.  Good times!

There it is in a nutshell.  I can't do eagle arms and I smell like a skunk.  Today is going to be a great day!

Actually, I am blessed, it will be a great day, all sarcasm aside.  My dog was trying to defend her home and people.  Slightly misguided, but you know.  She is a dog, and instincts rule in that situation.  I may not have eagle arms, but I do have muscles and no batwing going on.  I'll take no eagle and no batwing in a heartbeat, if it meant eagle arms meant batwing, old lady arms.

Hope this lovely Friday beginning our Thanksgiving weekend treats everyone well.  Much sunshine and light.

Saturday, October 1, 2011

October, already? Seriously?!

It's October.  Already.  And it's World Vegetarian Day.  Probably not the best day to have planned a birthday party for a certain 43 year old carnivore!  We won't be eating vegetarian today, but there are lots of days that I do eat vegetarian.  Maybe tomorrow can be Bolyea Vegetarian Day.

I can't believe it's October already.  September was a blur of busy-ness.  Both on the homefront and at school.  I am exhausted.  It's always such a crazy month.  I dream of having a large vegetable garden, but at the present I realize that there just plain and simply aren't any days or energy left for wrapping up a garden in September.  So while there are plans afoot for a bigger veggie plot next year, it won't be huge.  Because I haven't completely taken leave of my senses.  The really big garden will likely happen about the same time as I get chickens.  Not until my own chicks are all living on their own, and I have time to fill.  Or at are all driving and can get themselves to all of the after-school activities.

I'm feeling just a little behind these days.  I have a ton of work that I need to catch up on for school, and I need to knock off a bunch of assignments for the course I'm taking.  This past week has been NUTS, and I haven't gotten much of anything done!  Not a single evening spent at home.  Perhaps that's why I'm completely exhausted?  And even this morning, not able to sleep past 5:30.  Which compared to 3:30 or 4:00 is actually sleeping in, right?! 

Everyone else is still sleeping, so I'm basking in the peacefulness of the quiet.  Coffee beside me, computer to myself, sleeping doggy on one side, sleeping kitty on the other side.  I guess Allistair Cookie the kitty boy wasn't ready to uncuddle when I woke up.  It's been delightful to have him sleeping with me, cuddled up against my legs.  And Chase the wonderdog is my constant shadow when I'm home, so no surprise that she is curled up next to me, snoring away.

My girl chicky is home from school for the weekend, bringing with her a lovely friend.  This friend is adorable and oh, so much like Jess.  It was a very fun drive home from Orillia with the 2 girlies laughing and talking and keeping me company.  It gives me hope that we will get through the rougher parenting times with the boys and one day we will have those laughter filled car rides again too.

I had a great phone conversation with my sister on the way to Orillia.  I am truly grateful to have a sister that I can talk to, and who understands.  Yesterday was a very sad day for her and her family.  They had to have their darling dog, Lily, put to sleep.  They are devastated.  And we've had many talks lately about coming to that final decision.  Lily has not been well, and they have done everything they could possibly have done to try to keep her for a few more years.  But sadly, Lily was not going to get better and they made the difficult decision to let her go, for her own good.  It is truly a gift of love and compassion, but it also rips your heart out of your chest, and feels like someone is crushing it in their hands.  It's been 3 years since I had to make that kinder decision for my dog Bailey, but it is as fresh in my mind as if it were me in that vet's office yesterday.  My heart hurts for them, and I'm so sad because I too loved Lily.  Our family dogs are like our family children--we all love them all dearly and have them in our hearts too.  Someday they will be ready to love another dog, but for now they need to heal.

This post didn't start out to be sad and be written with tears spilling down my face.  Honest, it didn't.  But I often find myself letting the words and thoughts go where I obviously need them to go.  And I guess today is another one of those days. 

On a much happier note, we are celebrating Rick's 43rd birthday today!  Most of the family is coming over and we will eat, drink and be merry.  It will be nice to have everyone in our house.  It was kind of going to be an inside and outside on the deck get together, but unless everyone wears their long johns and winter coats I think we'll stay inside.  Cold fall weather here today.  I don't think my brother's family will be able to come, since my nephew Fisher had his tonsils and adenoids out this week, and he is still recovering.  We will miss them.  Luckily next weekend is Thanksgiving, and we will also be celebrating Fisher's 5th birthday.  Another birthday cake!  And pumpkin pie!  Two things that make my heart go pitter pat :)

Since I have rambled on enough, and I only have about a million things to do before this afternoon's guests arrive, I will humbly sign off for today.

Wishing everyone a beautiful, happy, peaceful fall day.  Stay warm and enjoy the day.