Sunday, January 22, 2012
Yesterday’s snowfall was a blessing to me. There is a kind of special peace I find in Nature that I cannot find in any other place. This afternoon, my husband and I headed out to our favorite trails in the MTA Stewart Buffer Zone (Stewart State Forest). Noted for its numerous challenging mountain bike trails, the buffer zone becomes the place to be during the winter months with your snowshoes, cross-country skis, snowmobiles and mountain bikes with very fatty tires.
(Making my way through the forest)
It’s so peaceful to listen to the snow crunching under my “shoes”, the song of the chickadee and the Canadian Mallards flying overhead.
(We are so small.)
(Miles of trails)
After snowshoeing a couple of miles on Scofield Lane trail, two mountain bikers passed by. They rode up a steep incline effortlessly! I began to think about my bike. Is it time for me to challenge myself and take my bike riding to the next level? A decision was made. This spring I will not only continue to ride old rail trails and back country roads, but I will add mountain biking trails to my routes.
As we all travel on our journey to better health, it’s important to take a “time-out” to reflect, be grateful for our blessings and push forward to reach our goals and maybe add new goal or two to our list.
Saturday, January 14, 2012
It was a cold day here although bright with sunshine. The temperature gauge did not rise above 18 degrees. Yes, the winter season has finally settled in New York. The past week did not offer any opportunity for outdoor activity except for a couple of quick lunch-time walks around campus. I was so looking forward to being outdoors today. And I was determined to ride my bike!
Anything is possible, right? So, I put on my long johns, bike leggings, ski pants shell, turtle neck top, ski jacket, ski gloves and liners, neoprene booties, ski socks, bike helmet, baklava AND foot warmer packets. I was ready! I learned from a previous ride that feet get cold when riding in weather below 30 degrees….ha-ha. Not going to happen today!
Out the door I went, hitched my bike to the car and drove to the nearest rail trail. How different the views were from the saddle of the bike: the farmer’s barren fields, the icy river along the trail, the red tail hawk searching for dinner. The sounds were so “quiet-like”. Such a peaceful place to be to unwind after a busy and stressful work-week!
Yes, anything is possible. Just dress for success!
(Wallkill River along the trail)
(Original Borden Farm - where Elsie the Cow was "born")
Saturday, January 07, 2012
The days are getting longer, so they say, even though I still arrive home from work in the dark. Oh, how I miss riding my bike or going for a run after work. To make up for it, I try to make every minute count on the weekends, especially if the weather was like today’s 45 degrees and full of sunshine! I believe the Official January Jump Start Challenge has been the cause of my daily energy boost lately. No longer do have to drag myself out of bed in the mornings. No longer do I stress out over issues that are not life threatening. I have learned not to take my health for granted.
While out on a bike ride or running on trails, I tend to think a lot. Today was no different. This morning I heard my bike say, “Let’s go for a ride.” Without any hesitation, I put on my gear. No long johns or ski jacket or neoprene booties necessary. As I rode my bike on a favorite route past an organic farm and, further down the road, a dairy farm, I was greeted with the aroma of fresh “country air”.
The temps today could trick you into thinking it is Spring. I wasn’t the only one who took advantage of today’s spectacular weather. The barn doors on the dairy farm were wide opened. I think the farmer was doing a little “Spring cleaning”!
Saturday, December 31, 2011
The following are my goals for 2012:
- To have a closer relationship with my God
- To make several quilts for Project Linus
- To learn to kayak
- To lose 5 pounds to keep within goal weight range
- To tone muscles, especially the core, for better posture
- To complete a bike tour
- To gain more self-confidence
- To improve my running time
- To bike new rail trails
- To learn skills of mountain biking
- To hike the Gunks
- To plan and organize better
- To complete cross-stitch ornaments for Christmas 2012
Happy New Year!
Friday, December 30, 2011
Here it is nearing the end of 2011 and, at the age of 57, I’m riding my bike in temps lower than 32 degrees F!
Looking back over the year, it amazes me to recall the lessons I’ve learned on my journey to better health. Many times whenever I thought, “I can’t do that”, I would challenged myself to imagine the end result and find ways to accomplish those goal(s). My biggest accomplishment happened in July when the scale informed me that I had finally reached my weight goal. How excited I was….and still am for maintaining that weight!
Planning and preparation plays a big role every day on my journey. The P&P combination is the biggest stress reducer in my life. Whether I’m cooking several meals on Sunday for the week ahead or packing my gym bag the night before work for my lunchtime workouts, I am constantly looking for ways to have a stress-free lifestyle.
During my years prior to joining SparkPeople.com, I used to turn to comfort food to calm my emotions. Today, as the holiday visit from my adult sons was coming to an end, my emotions began to build at a rapid pace. Instead of turning to food for comfort this morning, I decided to ride my bike. At 22 degrees F, I learned from a previous cold weather ride that I needed to wear neoprene booties over my shoes.
With proper attire and head gear, I embarked on a brisk and vigorous bike ride of 10 miles. Upon returning home, I felt great and ready to say my “temporary” good-byes to my sons.
2012, I’m ready, get set, let’s go! It’s time for new adventures in my life to better health! Have you thought about your new adventures and new goals for the New Year? I’m starting my list. Stay tuned for tomorrow’s blog!
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