Friday, January 01, 2010
MMX -- people of my vintage who had to learn cursive writing in school -- and how to tell time on clocks that actually used hands -- will remember that MMX is the Roman numeral notation for 2010.
And in 2010 I'm planning to fill in a few gaps in the MMX of my life. Here are my plans.
I: MMiX it up a bit more in the cardio department. Now that I've got my oomph back, I'm gonna experiment with some variations on that familiar elliptical theme!! Would a gradual return to running again (even occasionally) be a possibility?? And experimenting with different times of day for workouts ; intervals of higher and lower intensity? Sounds like fun, and exercise makes me feel so good that I've got to set about it with an attitude that celebrates all the great fun that it is.
II: MMaX it out on occasion: sometimes increase my weights to point of exhaustion, once a week push the boundaries on the cardio minutes, alternating shorter and longer cardio sessions? Because that's the way I can find out what I can do; by playing around, see what it's possible to achieve. It has to be fun to keep expanding my possibilities and find out how far I can push my potential.
III: MMinX around a little more: This it really the biggy. I will be more playful, more spontaneous, more joyous: and above all sillier!! Discipline is good, but discipline doesn't have to mean grimness, deprivation, or gloom. Life is to be enjoyed; seriously, if I learned anything in 2009, it was how important it is for to me to enjoy life as much as possible. So: I'm all for more fun in 2010! Which focus on fun will for me (paradoxically) demand utmost discipline. So this means that I will require myself to be more playful, more spontaneous, more joyous: and above all sillier!! In a good way.
MMinX. MMinX. MMinX. I'll goof it up more, minx it up more -- way more -- in MMX.
And so no, I didn't make like an ancient Roman and climb to the top of Mount Ellie or carve any of this in tablets of stone. Cause that would be completely contrary to the spirit of the whole thing.
If these MMX Roman numerals are putting me into an ancient Roman mode, then I'm thinking more along the lines of an unrolling scroll. Where i pay attention as the possibilities reveal themselves to me. In all of their luscious juiciness.
Change is good. Openness to the process of continuous change which is life: right now, this is the approach I crave.
Resilience, optimism, nimbleness, zest.
As The Spark tells me, maintenance isn't about stagnation, anxiously clutching on to weight loss in a death grip as if that were all that counted. It doesn't. It was never about a diet. It's always about transformation. Continuous transformation. And fun.
And so I will
Measure Maintenance as fluX
And have fun. Did I mention fun??
Thursday, December 31, 2009
I love to joke about my $50,000 body.
Because, of course, it's a 58 year old body. And although it's as good as I can make it at the moment . . . . that's a pretty big number.
Snickering? Eye rolls? OK, I get it. Haven't had any offers in that price range recently. And maybe not everyone would think it was worth that much.
But if I were to be working and billing all of the time that I spend at the gym -- that's a rough estimate of how much more (gross) I'd be earning.
Not that the $50,000 would be going into my pocket: not at all. I'd be paying hefty taxes on it. Big chunk would be going to overhead. And I'd be working less efficiently, with less sanity. All of that.
But IPA-RAY's terrific blog today called this truism to mind for me again: if you want to know what I value, check out how I spend my time and my money.
I value my health. It costs me money to be healthy: money for a gym membership, money for fresh fruits and vegetables, most of all money in foregone income.
And: it's worth it to me.
Being healthy makes me happy. I'm loving my $50,000 body!!
This year, 2009, was very Sidney Carton: the worst of times (serious health problems) AND the best of times (we got through it, both me and my sister: recovering very nicely thank you). Great family, friends, co-workers. Great medical care. But the experience of being ill and unable to work very much at all for quite a period of time (in the midst of a recession, no less!) reminded me again that poor health is costly. In every possible way.
The best of times too because: I found SparkPeople. Which helped me immeasurably, both physically and otherwise, in the recovery of my health. I peeled off the 20 pity party pounds while undergoing treatment. And since then, I've regained my energy and oomph.
So I'm spending quite a bit of time at SparkPeople. It keeps me motivated and grateful; and I try to give back some of what you've all given to me.
SparkPeople doesn't cost $50,000. But although SP is (amazingly) free it's also (just like they say) priceless. The trackers, the articles, the motivators and above all the community of people add incredible value.
So thank you.
And Happy New Year. Together we're going to make 2010 HEALTHY (which by definition means HAPPY) for all of us!!
Monday, December 28, 2009
I weighed myself today for the first time since Christmas dinner -- and I'm doing fine, actually at the low end of my maintenance range. Middle number still 5 and I'd prefer a 4 of course, as I'd temporarily achieved earlier this month. But in truth, that temporary middle 4 may have had something to do with a medical procedure requiring fasting AND purging, and giving new meaning to the term "purgatory"! You don't want to know any more details, truly. Way TMI. Didn't expect that middle 4 to last and it did not; that's why I didn't permit myself to change my weight tracker. Just a mirage . . .
What about this water thing that STLRZGRRL is all about big time? TWELVE cups a day?? Would that be the ticket for a "real" and sustainable middle 4? Yikes, my immediate reaction is: can't do that. Twelve cups of coffee, now: that would almost certainly be achievable! (and yes, I do understand: not at all the same thing. Counter productive even, maybe, even if some of it were decaff. But coffee is my only remaining sin. Almost, anyhow). But it works for her. So: I'm pondering more water. And contemplating how there would be any time whatsoever to work in between mad dashes to the little cubicle!!
Feels very very good to be at the gym. Caught up on my sleep over these few more relaxed days and I'm feeling something like the old energy. Excellent sensation! I enjoyed my elliptical and my weights and my abs today, and even feeling pretty svelte in the old gym tights also!
The mushroom turkey barley soup simmering on the stove is something I actually prefer to the roast turkey Christmas dinner. It's frugal -- I made the broth yesterday from the turkey bones, chilled it and skimmed off the fat this morning. And it's healthy: lots of veggies. I put in a touch of that "dill in a tube": never tried that before, but a big bunch of fresh dill does tend to go bad in the fridge before I can use it all up. So: now I'm looking forward to a big bowlful.
It's snowing gently and I've got one more day before officially heading in to the office tomorrow! A fire in the fireplace . . . a good junky book . . . life doesn't get too much better!
Wednesday, December 23, 2009
Work is winding down a bit, which gave me time to work thoughtfully and carefully on a very interesting problem today. The fridge is full (last grocery run on my way home tonight) and nothing urgent left to do. There is snow on the ground and our Christmas lights across the front of the house look beautiful as I pull in the driveway.
Life is feeling good enough: no call for imperishable bliss today! .
Friday, December 18, 2009
and of course that First Christmas involved labour and delivery in a stable. After a long journey.
Those of us who've ever done labour and delivery, even without the preliminary donkey ride, are prepared to concede: that's an element of the Bethlehem saga which could not have been so great.
But once that part was all over, is it frivolous to suppose that the donkey plus an ox or two and maybe a few other farmyard extras must have made for pretty effective seasonal decor? A little lowing, a little clucking. Nice manger, swaddling clothes, some straw on the floor: simple.
No need to steam clean the carpets or arrange the Victorian ceramic village in drifts of cotton batten on the mantelpiece or polish the silver. No recalcitrant Christmas tree to be fitted into a stand that leaks water and then tips over; no ornaments with hangers requiring untangling; no tablecloths to be freshly starched; no preparation of guest bedrooms; no cleaning of bathrooms to meet the standards of a visiting mother-in-law: none of that.
The angel Gabriel handled all of the First Christmas greeting requirements: "For unto you is born in the City of David . . " That was pretty much it. No drafting and photocopying of a detailed newletter describing everything that had happened the previous year. An absolute absence of last-minute envelope-licking or rush trips to the post office. Not even a mass email.
In lieu of animated lawn inflatables and Christmas lights perilously strung from the eaves, the Heavenly Host supplied an effortlessly dramatic exterior lighting effect. One bright star in the east: enough. Although -- and again courtesy of the HH -- there was also a full program of entertainment: all singing, all dancing, all night long. Quite divine, actually.
What about food? Here's the insider information: not everyone realizes it, but it was the shepherds who handled the catering.
Shepherd's pie, that's what I've been told. Of course those one-dish casseroles are way easier than fiddly hors d'oeuvres, carving a turkey, timing all the sides, pouring the drinks, organizing the plum pudding and brandy sauce and shortbreads. An assembly line of shepherds prepared an ample supply of shepherd's pies well in advance and then just re-heated them as required; they apparently used some kind of celestial precursor to the microwave.
A healthy recipe, of course. Balanced fats, carbs, proteins: low sodium; extra calcium worked into the whipped potato topping; lots of veggies in the filling. After all, those Heavenly Host dancers were working up quite an appetite, each one aiming to enter a huge calorie burn into their individualized fitness trackers. Enough calories, in fact, that after the main course, the shepherds felt completely justified in passing around candy canes. Just small ones, naturally. Still, a very nice touch.
But that (washed down with copious supplies of plain water) was the whole menu. Really. And Mary was responsible for none of it. No menu planning; no grocery shopping; no fridge stocking; no cooking; no serving; no clean up; no stacking the dishwasher; no unstacking the dishwasher; no putting the dishes back in the cupboards. None of it.
Biggest job not on Mary's list? For sure it was the gift shopping. Because the wise men (yes: the wise MEN! Can you believe it??) handled all of that. The wrapping too. And then they tracked the gift receipts, just in case of returns.
But as it happened, possibly because they were WISE men, there were no problems with wrong sizes or duplicates. Gold, frankincense and myrrh: one of each, all good. Not a single trip back to the mall was required. So neither Mary nor the wise men experienced second-round shoppers snarling over a short supply of parking places in the parking lot. No items were dropped in the slush. And there was no anti-climactic day-after-Christmas delivery to ungracious recipients of the replacement "gift" they had signalled should have been selected in the first place.
Sounding good, isn't it? But that's still not the whole story.
Because most significant of all: we have it on excellent authority that Mary only did Christmas once.
Never to be repeated.
Whereas over a lifetime, most women organize Christmas for their famlies how many times?
OK. I'm just saying. Not suggesting that we don't love every blessed minute of it, of course.
And: Merry Christmas to all!!
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