Random thoughts of an upbeat mind

I was on track last week working out and walking until Thursday when I got a call from a friend who lives in the States asking me to pray for her son who was involved in a hit and run accident. I heard ICU and brain bleed but held out hope. What shook me what just how small and broken my friend sounded. This lady who just last month buried her husband of 36 years after a short and swift battle with leukemia. During her husband’s treatment and even after his death she still sounded like herself if that makes any sense.

Thursday night I prayed and wept for my friend. I even reached out to one of my pray warrior friends. Figured more people praying couldn’t hurt. Thursday night’s sleep was restless. I got up Friday and sent a quick text asking if there were any updates. She called me as I was on my way to work to tell me he passed away. I don’t know anything other than that. And if it wasn’t for this stupid pandemic I would be on a plane or driving to be by her side.

I have not felt like myself since. The pain I imagine she is in is unbearable to me. I don’t know if it is magnified because I am a parent or because this just goes against the natural order of things but I can’t think of anything worse than burying your child.

Logically I know there are people who have experienced these types of events and much more and survived, even came back stronger … I am not yet sure about my friend. Just last week we were talking about how much she has been through in the past 6 months without any real time off. Between both of her parents declining health, helping her sister who is their full time caregiver, starting a new job and having her hubby pass away it is a lot to deal with. We were discussing her figuring out how to take some time off or possibly changing jobs as she is not enjoying this new one and then one more trauma gets added to the pile.

This one cuts deep and I have no idea how to be useful from so far away. So for now I pray and hope that when I next speak to her I will have words of comfort and value.

Hope all is well in your world.

Exercise break is over

Starting tomorrow…

I need to get back on the exercise bandwagon. 3 weeks is way too long. Now that we are back on a stay at home order it should be easier to fit this in my day. And I will continue to walk 10K steps at least Monday to Friday. Time to get back into a routine that includes weights.

My shoulder is feeling better and my chiropractor gave me some exercises that have been helping. I need a massage or 6 but now is not the right time. I think I need to start a proper stretching routine. The tension in my shoulders and upper back needs to go away.

The other thing I need to get under control is my late night snacking. I have an alarm that tells me to stop eating at 8:30 every night and I always ignore it. Whether it is boredom or dehydration I really need to get serious about not eating late into the night. It gets harder on the days I work until 8 but it is not impossible.

Wait there is one more thing … sleep. I really need to get to bed at a decent hour more nights and not. Sunday nights are the worst. The procrastination is strong. I do have a bedtime alarm and yes I ignore it too. 😦

On that note, I need to find my bed.

Hope all is well in your world.

March Recap

I can’t believe that I haven’t posted anything since the last monthly recap… Not much has happened since last month. Life is just chugging along.

Last year I bought a dresser from Ikea and thought a friend of mine would put it together. Well he politely declined. I held out hope but gave up at the end of last year. I took the third week of March off and put assembling this on my list of things to do. I can say this is now done. I started it on the first day of my vacation and found that I was missing a part. I had to make an appointment at Ikea to discuss the missing part. I was told by security that I may not get the part if I don’t have a receipt. 🀬Since I don’t have the receipt and am outside of the 365 days I did not have high hopes. In the end a second customer service rep suggested a manager override and I left with the part.

I lost the motivation to finish putting the dresser together and tackled it yesterday. I hurt. Making 8 drawers with a screwdriver and a hammer is not for the weak. To make matters worse I think I have injured my shoulder. Superwoman over here, decided today was a good day to clean my entire place and move furniture. πŸ€¦β€β™€οΈ At one point today I couldn’t lift my arm without pain. I am going to rest it. Tomorrow I was to start a boot camp, that will be put on hold.

I have not exercised in the past two weeks. I am still keeping up my 10K steps per day. I bought proper shoes and it makes all the difference. My weight has not changed but my measurements are no longer going in the right direction so as soon as my shoulder feels better I will be back to working out.

I read 4 books in March. I started Obama’s latest book and could not get into it. The paper used to print it is very nice but I was not in the right head space for this novel. It went back to library with only 7 chapters finished. I actually read Royal Holiday and Gone in about 2 days each. Both are part of series that I enjoyed. I am trying to get all of Lisa Gardner’s books read as I have yet to read one I didn’t enjoy. Until my beloved Karin Slaughter writes another book I will slowly work my way through Lisa Gardner’s work. I read Karin’s series out of order so I am trying to do better with Lisa’s books.

There were 13 no spend days last month. But the days I did spend were VERY spendy! Going to try to stay focused this month. I went on a couple of outings and my credit card sure shows that. I really don’t have any needs so I will try to keep that in mind this month.

I survived my no meat challenge. I will try to remain more plant based but there is a lot of meat in my freezer that needs to be eaten. I tried to convince my kids we should have Sunday dinner but no one was on board. Looks like I will have to eat it all by myself. 😦

That’s all I have for now.

Hope all is well in your world.

February Recap

Very little progress has been made in the freezer clean out. I have been eating a lot of fresh food lately. I bought shrimp since I gave up meat, then ate mainly salads. πŸ€¨πŸ˜’πŸ€ͺ I am debating skipping grocery shopping again this week as I still have so much food. I don’t have any fresh vegetables but have lots of frozen or canned. Sounds like I have an answer to this debate.

I worked out every day except 3 and still managed to get almost 5 hours more exercise than January. Those 10K steps for at least 5 days a week are making a difference. Not sure how I will manage now that we are supposed to be in the office 3 days a week. I have lost 10 inches over all so far but the pounds are not really moving. Thank goodness I took measurements or else this would be very disheartening. I do feel stronger so that helps.

I read 6 books last month, thanks to the library’s best bets feature. Which allows you to take out popular best sellers for 7 days. I apparently can get it done once there is a deadline. Hench was an unexpected addition. My cousin’s book club was reading it so I put it on hold and when it became a best bet I jumped on it so we could discuss it sooner rather than later. It was not even on my radar. I quite liked it, very different from my usual reads. The rest of the books definitely needed a deadline for me to finish them. 😦

There were 9 no spend days last month. I will try for 15 this month. A challenge considering I am returning to work 3 days a week. Time to return to meal prepping. I bought these curried lentil and chickpeas pouches so I really just need to make some rice. I have a lot of quick to make meals that just require rice or pasta.

Now pardon me as I think there are some shrimp calling me.

Hope all is well in your world.

Lately

I am still mainly working from home. Still encouraged to come in more often if I want. I have really gotten into a great groove when working from home and I don’t want to mess with it. I go for an hour long walk at lunch and am starting to explore my neighbourhood. I am usually on the phone with a friend who is also walking their neighbourhood. This makes the time pass quickly and does wonders towards getting me to meet my 10K steps per day. I surprised myself by surpassing my 5 days per week goal last week and walked 10K steps 6 days in a row. I took today as a rest day but still managed to get over 8K steps.

I learned something new 2 weeks ago. Let me start this by saying I was not brought up participating in any religion nor do I currently follow one at this time. Having said that I have given up meat for Lent for at least 10 years now. I always thought Lent was a 40 day period that went from Ash Wednesday to Good Friday. Imagine my surprise when I learned it is actually 46 days. So I have cut my no meat period short this year. Mainly because 2 of my favourite meals were on the menu in the cafeteria on two of the days I went in to the office. But no more cheating for me. There will be no land animals going down hatch until Easter. I will still get 40 days in.

I went back to counting calories last week. I do not like it. While I don’t think I eat anything too calorie heavy on a regular basis I had a feeling that my portions might have grown. Some did and others didn’t. The eye opener for me it looking at how much fiber and protein I get. Protein is better than fiber. Salads for dinner is back on the menu. I am doing well on the water front and get at least 8 cups of water every day. My goal is 12. I think I actually do get that as I drink 2-4 mugs of tea every day but I am only counting water.

Tomorrow I will measure and weigh myself. Things feel like they are going in the right direction. Hopefully the numbers support my feelings.

Hope all is well in your world. Stay safe.

Glutton for punishment

Last weekend my friend was posting her steps for the day and she was hitting 12K+ for multiple days so on Monday I commented with my awe and support. And like a true friend she challenged me to join in the “fun”. I “included” another friend of ours as misery loves company. We decided to do a 10K steps per day challenge for 5 days a week.

Firstly I want to state the obvious. 10,000 steps is a lot of steps … way too many steps. It is like a second job. Takes quite some time to get it all in and even then I still had to do laps around my place in order to get all the steps in. Our cut off time was 10 pm.

I started on Tuesday and went for walks outside at lunch on both Tuesday and Wednesday. 40 minutes is not enough to get all those steps in. Thursdays I had to go into the office so I got up early to do a 30 minute Leslie walking workout. I don’t know if it is because I am walking in place but I don’t think my watch captures my steps correctly when I do Leslie workouts. Friday it was colder than I thought was reasonable to be outside, so I did for the very first time an hour long Leslie 4 mile workout. I thought I was going to fall down. And I still didn’t hit 10k steps. 😦

On top of all of this I was still doing my 20 minute weight/walking workouts. AND I STILL HAD TO DO LAPS!?! I went from 20-30 minutes of exercise per day to 75+. By Friday, I was done. My legs were on fire. I decided to take the weekend to rest. Tomorrow we start again. When I step on the scale I am expecting to see big results or else I’m going to be so mad.

Hope all is well in your world.

Life is mundane

This past week was uneventful. I went into the office and had the pod to myself. The building is a ghost town. I wonder if it will stay that way. Rumour has it that the lockdown will be extended even though the Covid numbers are dropping. I’m on board with this. I love just walking down the hall to “go to work”. I am supposed to go in again this week. I hope the chef has something good on the menu.

The exercise is chugging along. This past Friday I woke up with a pain in my right hip. I tried rolling it last night on my foam roller and was pleasantly surprised that there was some relief. Will have to get more serious about stretching and rolling. What I really need is a good massage.

I have been watching way too many home renovations shows. By-product of being home in the day. I am gathering inspiration but still not feeling ready to pull the lever on my own renos. Too often there are issues with older homes so my apartment in a 40+ year old building is bound to have problems. I know I shouldn’t let fear stop me but it is for the moment.

Other than that this week has been quiet.

Hope all is well in your world.

January Recap

I realized I did not take a picture of my freezer when I started Operation Empty Freezer. There are a few less things in it since I began. I ate a couple and gave away more. You see all that ice build up that needs to go. Yeah, that is the master plan. This weekend I wanted bacon so I asked the young one to look and see if we had any before I added it to the grocery list. Diva pulled out a package that was buried at the bottom that expired 5 years ago… 😲 I’m not sure how this will all work as this is a lot of food for one person to eat. Since we are in a pandemic, it’s not like I can have dinner parties. But I will keep going.

I managed to work out every day except 2 in January. Not bad for a former couch potato. And since I remembered to take my measurements and step on the scale I can say I am down 3 inches and 3 pounds overall. Not amazing progress but moving in the right direction. Fasting last week was not successful. I was doing well until around 7pm when I just got a chill that I could not shake so I had one of those packages of Lipton chicken noodle soup. It helped. I will try again tomorrow.

I read 5 books in January. The Wedding Date was the easiest read I have read in a long time. Took me about 3 hours from start to finish. It then prompted me to read the next 2 books in the series before I needed something a bit more meatier. Alone, I started on Saturday and finished on Sunday I could not put it down. I am currently curling up with Lenny Kravitz’s Let Love Rule.

There were 12 no-spend days in January. Apparently when I don’t leave the house it lessens the likeliness that I will spend money. At this rate when the world reopens in 2024 I’ll be rich!! LOL I hope I am still not trying to finish the contents of my freezer. πŸ˜‚ Last year was surprisingly a record year at the FT job so we are getting a year end bonus. This will be given out by the end of this month so I will just slide it into my retirement fund.

This month will be more of the same as if it ain’t broke…

Hope all is well in your world.

Stay safe.

Use it up

2021 is going to be the year I finally defrost my freezer. The ice is building up in the chest freezer and it is way overdue. I think I bought this freezer 8-10 years ago and I have never defrosted it. I usually fill it back up before it gets too empty. Thereby delaying the defrost.

This year is my year to “use it up”. I don’t know about you but I have a tendency to repurchase the food I really like and left the other items until … sadly it’s past its best before date and into the garbage it goes. I am making a conscious decision to not go to the store until the freezer has been defrosted. Which means I have to eat everything that is in it.

Meal 1 – Chicken feta spinach sausage with green peppers and onions and chickpea pasta sprinkled with old cheddar cheese and parmesan, loosely based on this recipe. It was going to be with frozen broccoli but I found 2 peppers that had seen better days.

Less food waste. I did find some moldy cheese in the fridge that was thrown into the compost. There is still more cheese in the fridge so cheesy recipes are coming to my belly.

I was going to buy eggs but then I realized I have a box of mini quiches in the freezer that should be eaten or given away. So that will be breakfast this week. I am working from home all this week so plenty of time to make meals. Set it in the toaster oven and go for the win.

I fasted again this past Tuesday and find it harder to do from home as I snack more at home than at work. Speaking of working from home, I also don’t seem to leave the house when working from home. So one of my friends has decided that we will have a walking lunch date via the phone a couple of times this week so that I may get some fresh air.

I am looking forward to working from home this week. Elastic waisted pants for the win!! That plus the PVR could use some attention. Hopefully there will be less meetings this week and I can knock out a few hours. Other than watching TV, I plan to work out in the morning. I also want to start stretching daily. My back, particularly my shoulders, has been feeling tight.

That’s all I have this week. Hope all is well in your world.

We’re on lockdown

Since Thursday, the province of Ontario has been on state of emergency lockdown. For the next 24 days, we are only supposed to leave the house for “essential” activities. No one can accurately describe what constitutes an “essential” activity as non-essential stores are open. “They” say the police are not supposed to be pulling drivers over unless there is a traffic violation and at that point they can ask why you are on the road. By-law officers can’t randomly enter someone’s home unless the neighbours have called. Not sure what changed other than reduced occupancy in stores and businesses.

This new lockdown did bring about a big change for me. I am now going to be working from home more than at the office. Over the next 4 weeks I will only have to be in the office 3 times. Once in weeks 1, 3 and 4. This is so I don’t “forget” what it’s like to go into the office. πŸ˜’ This WFH situation has made me think about where I will be working. My usual 1 or 2 WFH days are spent working from my recliner. Not ideal for the long term. I didn’t want to spend any money on a new desk so I reached out to my Dad who had not 1 but 4 options in his house. Old desks and tables from years gone by. I picked one and went to pick it up today. I also had the great idea to ask about a microwave… Two for two! Dad’s basement and garage for the win!!

I wanted a desk because the PVR is overflowing. I could easily work from my dining room table but I can’t see the TV from there and it seemed easier to get a desk than you move the TV and everything else. I also “borrowed” a desk chair from work. I think my back with thank me for it. I am all set for tomorrow morning when I will hook up the monitor and laptop and get started on watching some of these seasons from 2019.

I forgot to put in my availability for next week so I was not put on the night job’s schedule. I will pick up a few shifts but I am not motivated to do this anymore. I do have a info session with the old call center manager this week to give her my feedback on this experience. I know most of the old staff is not happy with the pay structure, especially since it hardly seems busy and yet they are always on you to make sure you do your hours. I work half as many hours and my pay is about a third of what it used to be. Since this is PT for me it is not as detrimental as it has been for others.

Still on the exercise bandwagon. In the week I do 20-ish minutes per day and on the weekends I am going for long walks with my Mom and friends. This is working out well for me so far. When the weather gets colder I might stop the outdoor weekend walks. I fasted on Tuesday from the moment I woke up to when I went to bed. Only drank coffee, tea and water. It was hard but not as hard as I thought it would be. I did step on the scale Wednesday morning to see weight loss. I’m sure it was just water but it was nice to see lower numbers. I will step on the scale tomorrow morning and see if it made any difference.

My reading has slowed down significantly. I am trying to read Sacred Woman and don’t seem to be in the right frame of mind for it. So I have set it aside to read The Wedding Date. This seems like a quick, light read.

Well that’s all for now. Hope all is well in your corner of the world.