Thursday, March 18, 2010
The day started with a trip to the physical therapist. She was pleased with my progress and we talked about how good water aerobics is for me. Feeling motivated, I completed my visit and drove to the pool where I take my water class. So far this week it has been too cold to have class.
When I got there the thermal covers were still over the pool. (Not a good sign) I was desperate to do at least one class this week so decided to give it a shot. Did I mention that there is a strong, cold wind today? The temperature was around 56 degrees. I changed into my suit and went outside to see if I could get in a little water jogging before class started. I was the only person outside at the class section of the pool. The pool was still covered and all of the guards were gone except one who was watching the lap lanes. Eventually other class members came (thank goodness!) and the guards started taking off the pool cover.
It's an amazing process to see the guards take the thermal covers off and roll them onto giant spools. Once they finished, a guard got up into the chair in our section and we were allowed to get into the water. The water was nothing short of wonderful at 84 degrees! The class started. The wind brought in heavy dark clouds but it was blowing so hard that the clouds moved quickly. It was interesting to watch them. They had a kind of dark beauty.
Our work out was vigorous and good but we had to try to stay as submerged as possible. The cold wind on wet skin makes you feel like an icicle. Despite our workout efforts the class dragged; even the teacher kept looking at her watch. Of course having about 10% body fat probably made her feel really frozen. It is unusual for the class stop at the 60 minute mark since we all enjoy it so much. This time was different. Finally the class was over and it was time to get out of the water. Ha, ha, ha! The air temperature was at least 28 degrees colder than the water temperature. With the wind chill it felt much colder than that.
The teacher yelled, "The last person out gets a prize!" If we had been timed for speed, we probably could have broken world records. I've never seen so many people dash to their towels and head for the locker room so quickly in my life. In fact it was so funny that we started laughing and teasing about it. Our silliness took some of the sting out of the cold wind. We were literally tripping over ourselves to get into the warm building!
I took a hot shower, got dressed quickly and went out to my car. I sat in the car for several minutes with the heat on full blast before I was warm enough to drive home. After I finish this blog, I'm going to go wrap myself in a blanket and lay on the bed.
But....the workout was great!
Wednesday, March 17, 2010
I got to thinking today about the word luck so I looked it up in the dictionary. According to Webster's New World Dictionary luck is defined as: "(1) the seemingly chance happening of events that affect someone; fortune; lot (2) good fortune".
What struck me are the words "seemingly chance happening of events". The word seemingly leads me to believe that it appears to the outside world to occur by chance. Perhaps it's really do to hard work or to finding an opportunity and acting on it. It may depend upon the circumstances.
On this St. Patrick's Day where we wish others luck, I need to count my blessings. Even though I have turmoil and several crisises going on in my life now, all I have to do is look around me to see so many people who are much worse off than I. I am basically a happy person. I live in one of the richest countries in the world. I have freedom, a roof over my head, a nice soft bed, healthy food on the table, a computer, a car, friends, family, love and my faith. Many of these things, I take for granted. Someone who isn't as fortunate as I, would probably consider his/her self lucky to have even a portion of what I have every day.
I am a lucky person. I am very blessed and I am loved.
Monday, March 15, 2010
Today's assignment for the March Challenge, Learning To Love Myself As I Am Now, is to evaluate my own progress in the challenge at the half way mark.
This challenge has been a good one for me because I'm so self critical. I often expect myself to be perfect. It has helped me to see my tendency to counter positive statements about myself with "but" statements. Example: I have a big heart and trusting nature but this sets me up for being hurt. I need to learn to make positive statements and carry on positive self dialogue without putting a condition on it. I have made some progress with this as you can see if you read yesterday's blog. As I was writing the blog, I had to catch myself to keep from writing conditional "but" statements. This made me very aware of this action. I tend to do the same thing in conversations with other people and also make self depreciating remarks. I know that I do it because I'm trying to relate to other people and make them feel good by trying to make a connection. Sometimes, however, I'm doing it at my own expense. Doing things at my own expense is something that still needs a little work. The challenge has helped increase my awareness.
Another thing that the challenge has done is make me more aware of how "helpful/loving actions" affect my own feelings and the feelings of other people. When I took the time to think about it, it heightened my sensitivity to how others feel. It also made me aware of how good loving actions make feel too! When I feel good, my own actions/thoughts tend to be more charitable towards myself and loving myself is easier. I am seeing that everything is connected in one way or another.
The challenge has made me think. I've had to ask myself some tough questions. What prevents me from loving myself as I am? For one thing, old tapes from my childhood sometimes run through my mind. I learned to treat myself the way my parents treated me when I was young. As I became an adult, I looked at their treatment and had to decide if it had any validity. Although my parents taught me manners, it was painful to admit that they treated me badly most of the time. How can I undo the damage to my self esteem? I have to re-teach myself how to treat me. How I treat myself affects how I let other people treat me. I have to admit that I've let lots of people treat me badly. This stops now. There is a fine line between facing reality, being honest with yourself, and beating yourself up. I'm breaking the habit of being brutal with myself. I am learning to treat myself the same way I would treat a beloved friend. Love starts with yourself and moves outward. I am making progress. This is just one part of my journey.
Wednesday, March 10, 2010
I love this time of year here in Florida! It is the season of strawberries and the annual Strawberry Festival. Although the weather has put a bit of a damper on the local strawberry crop, as it gets warmer and the berries begin to peak, they become plentiful and affordable. This year the berries are especially sweet due to the recent cold snap. The cold makes the mature berries very sweet but slows the growth of the immature fruit. That's why the strawberries are a little late in peaking this year. I love to buy local produce because the time from picking until being on the table is fairly short. This keeps the nutrients from breaking down before we can get them into our bodies. The strawberry is rich in antioxidants and vitamin C. I think I'll make a Spark recipe for a strawberry smoothie for lunch today!
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