Friday, March 14, 2014
Today, I walked through the door of the house and said, "Well, I'm back." The last line of The Lord of the Rings: Return of the King. It made me a little teary. You see, I started on the Walk to Rivendell back at the beginning of 2006, and after 7 years and 2 and a half months, I have completed every step of that journey. I walked the miles with the Fellowship to Rauros, then followed Frodo and Sam to Mount Doom and through their rescue by the eagles. I then "flew back" to Rauros and followed Aragorn, Gimli, and Legolas through the final battle. Then once again, flew back and followed Merry and Pippin until they got split after Helm's Deep, following first Merry and then Pippin. With the Fellowship reunited, I walked and rode the journey back to Hobbiton, and finally the journey to the Gray Havens and back. A total of 8,349 miles.
I've kept records throughout all those years. I've only counted the miles that were part of exercise, not just walking around for errands or work. The mileage tells the tale of where I've been emotionally and physically. In 2006 and 2007, I walked over 1,000 miles. But from 2008-2011 my mileage was minimal--shocking minimal. As little as 282 miles in 2008. Part of that was that in 2007 I was hit by a car on my bike. I wasn't badly injured, but I lost my nerve for riding. I went from riding over 500 miles to not riding a single mile in 2011.
But at the end of 2011 I took control of my life again. I joined Spark People in September and started working out. In 2012 I completed 2542 miles, and in 2013, 1684. Considering how crisis-filled 2013 was, I am not surprised that my mileage fell off considerably.
And now, I have reached the end of an adventure. The last of the Walk to Rivendell. I'm proud of that accomplishment.
So what's next? After a short celebration, tomorrow I will head out with Bilbo and the dwarves for the Lonely Mountain. Because there are always adventures to be had in Middle Earth.
Now please excuse me; I have to attend an Unexpected Party at the home of Mr. Bilbo Baggins!
(Anyone interested in the walk can find the website here: home.insightbb.com/~eowynchallenge/W
(Also, there is a Walk to Rivendell Spark team, too.)
Thursday, March 13, 2014
Yesterday's weather was abysmal. All the schools around us were closed because snow was ... not so much falling as being hurled vertically across the landscape like tiny ice bullets. The wind velocity combined with this punishing precipitation inspired me not so much to go to the gym as to climb back into bed, pull the covers over my head, and refuse to come out until April.
Plus, it was a swimming day. Which meant getting WET in a non-home location. It just sounded terrible.
So I promised myself that I could just go to the rec center, climb in the hot tub, and marinate for half an hour. After all, I only committed to going TO the gym every day. Not to working out every day.
Of course I was lying to myself. I knew that when I got there, I would at least get into the pool first and paddle a couple leisurely laps.
That was also a lie. I went, and I swam a mile freestyle, then an additional 5 laps of backstroke just to finish out the hour. Then I finally went and sat in the hot tub for a little while.
It's useful, at times of low motivation, to break things down into baby steps and to tell ourselves that we only have to do the first step. Right now my kitchen is a mess, and I'm telling myself that when I finish this entry I only have to put the dishes in the sink into the dishwasher and start it. Nothing else.
Sometimes we really do just complete that one baby step. There may well be a day when I go to the gym and just get in the hot tub because I really need a day off. But most of the time, it's just a little lie, coaxing us on to the next part of what feels like an overwhelming task. Just one mile on the bike, just one time around the track, just one load of laundry, just one errand.
And with a little luck, we will finish the day feeling quite smug about all the things we lied ourselves into accomplishing.
Wednesday, March 12, 2014
It's snowing again in Cleveland. Yesterday it was 61 degrees.
We've reached the amusing part of this winter shindig wherein all the neighbors look at the forecast, see that it's supposed to be in the mid-50s on Friday, and say, "Oh HELL no, I'm not shoveling this crap!" I can't say I blame them; I feel the exact same way.
I just got back from walking the dog. There isn't that much snow falling, but it is falling sideways at just under orbital velocities. It stings exposed skin like crazy. We only got about 5 minutes out from the house when Shasta was all, "I'm done! Here's the business part of this nonsense. Let's go home!" By the time we got back to the house, our earlier footprints were completely obliterated.
Tuesday, March 11, 2014
So I'm 11 days into a personal commitment to go to the gym every day for 100 days. So far I have made it every day, and I'm swimming a lot more, which is important for the upcoming triathlon season. I'm actually enjoying it quite a bit now that I'm getting into the swim routine. Today, though, was supposed to be weight training and treadmill. I did great on the weight training--45 minutes of lifting. Then I looked at the treadmill and felt like I was going to throw up. I just could NOT make myself get on the thing. I walked around the gym for a few minutes, trying to psych myself up, but it was not happening. So I packed it in and left.
I just can't get enthusiastic about jogging/running. Which is kind of bad for triathloning. And I'm committed to a 5 MILE event with my daughter on Saturday. I expect that she will finish, then come back for me about 2 miles in and cheerlead me the rest of the way. I wish I could get enthused about running. I love to walk, and even jog outside. That treadmill, though. It's torture.
Monday, March 10, 2014
Well, I promised not to talk about this project all the time, but I am planning to report in every 10%.
Gym: So far, I'm 10 for 10 on getting to the gym, which was the one about which I was most concerned. But it was also my highest priority. I am focusing a lot on swimming because it was my weakest leg in last summer's triathlons. I am still slow, but I'm getting in the water. As we move into outdoor exercise weather and I start biking and running outside, I will still be going to the gym for strength training on those outdoor days.
Cooking: I've cooked, but not every day. I was out of town this weekend and missed Friday-Sunday.
Reading: I've read every day.
Practicing Italian: About 50% successful in getting this done.
Journaling: I missed Saturday because I was completely away from the computer, and yesterday because I was just plain tired. Otherwise, good.
Crafting: Not. One. Darned. Day. There are only so many balls I can keep in the air. This ball has fallen to the ground and rolled under a table.
In all, I'm pretty happy. Not perfect, but I'm getting a lot more done. We'll see how the next 10 days go!
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