Sunday, June 29, 2014

This is definitely going to work

OK, I’m definitely doing that Whole30 with M.H. starting tomorrow. I knew I was all in when I found myself jotting down this list this morning:

Stop playing electronic games (meaning the brain-rotting 2048)
Clean something (meaning stop letting the bathrooms get gross)
Cook something (meaning vegetables and sausage for quick breakfasts, also broth)
Go to bed on time
Eat only between 10 a.m. and 6 p.m.
Use standing desk half the day
Plan meals in advance
Read for pleasure/work on M.H.’s book (he’s got a big chunk ready for editing)
Take a liver pill (they are gross and I gave up, but it's time to get rid of them)
Get serious about running
Go to yoga (whenever there’s a suitable class on the schedule)
Take walks
Make the bed
Work on memorizing John (which is my next big scripture goal)

Those, of course, are all the things I would like to start doing every day in ADDITION to eating strictly Paleo for 30 days. Yes, it’s a New Life Plan! My hope is that I can do all this for 30 days, and then some of the good habits will just…stick around for a while.

In the meantime, I’m suddenly overcome with the desire to play one last game of 2048.

Saturday, June 28, 2014

I scream, you scream

We ended up with more ice cream in the house last week because—guess what!—my sister-in-law and family made a short trip up here and of course we had to have some on hand to sustain their lives (yes, I’m blaming them again). As of today, the last of it is finished, and I am so sick of being addicted to eating junk again that I’m thinking of joining M.H. for another Whole30 he’s planning to start Monday. A bunch of random, self-imposed discipline sounds like just the thing to get our summer back on the rails.

“Off the rails” sounds so overly dramatic, but I’ve noticed that when I can’t get control of what I eat, I don’t seem to have any control of anything else, either. And I would like to support my spouse, who I have noticed is much happier and pleasanter when he’s not eating grains and stuff.

I went for a short run on Thursday but stopped as soon as I started to feel my calf muscle starting to twinge again. Then it kind of hurt most of the day Friday but feels fine again today, so I guess that was a success of sorts and I should try it again.

Monday, June 23, 2014

OK, last vacation post

Below are the last few pictures I want to share from the Utah portion of our vacation. I should not neglect to mention that the REAL purpose of our trip was to first spend a few days visiting M.H.’s sister and her family in Denver, which was also really fun. I came away with lots of great memories, the rules for a fantastic running-around game you can play on a pool table, and a renewed addiction to ice cream. A bad one.

My sister-in-law is famous for the massive amount of ice cream she keeps in her (normal-sized) freezer. I didn’t count the cartons while I was at their house, so I was hesitant to try to make any estimates here, because, surely, if I said there were about 20, I’d be exaggerating and you wouldn’t believe me anyway. Then my brother-in-law tweeted a picture of all their current ice cream. You can just count them yourself.

After leaving Denver, I think we had ice cream just about every day we were in Utah, and I choose to blame the in-laws.

Saturday, June 21, 2014

Equal time for the boy who loves water

I was a little worried about how our trip to Utah’s national parks would be for Mik—at 13, he’s not a fan of “scenery” for its own sake, particularly if a hike is required to get to the scenery.

But, you know, I think he actually enjoyed himself! The landscape is so radically different in the Utah desert from what you see in Montana that it looked alien at times. And we stuck to short and/or impressive hikes (and tried to avoid the extreme heat in the middle of the day). For example, this view required a bit longer walk—and the braving of a thunderstorm on the way out, which was not a thrill for him—but c’mon:

The icing on the cake was the last day and our hike of The Narrows in Zion National Park. It’s through a deep, narrow (spectacular) canyon cut by a small river, and the canyon is SO narrow that probably about half the time you’re hiking in the river itself. I don’t have any pictures of this one, because I was not about to sacrifice my phone or camera to the river—which was a good call, actually, because before it was all over I fell in twice and got wet up to my shoulders.

We hiked about five miles total, but it took half the day because of the difficulty of wading. But wow. We all LOVED it. Unanimously our favorite hike ever, and I think Mik had more fun than anyone. You should have seen him prance up the river…come up laughing when he got dunked…POINT OUT the views to us. Someday (someday soon before I get old) I would really like to hike the full canyon, which is 16 miles top to bottom—maybe with an inner tube so I could just coast over the parts that gave me the most trouble.

Anyway, here’s Mik on our trip, with all the evidence you need that fun was had:

Friday, June 20, 2014

The boy who loves rocks

I was fine (even happy) with the “Dex has a job” concept, but for some reason I’m struggling today with “Dex is at work.” Dex…is at work? DEX is at work. DEX is AT WORK. Huh.

Maybe it’s just because neither M.H. or I have outside workplaces anymore, and so it’s been eight years since anyone in this family has “gone to work”—or maybe it’s because in some part of my head he’s about 6.

Either way, let’s commemorate the occasion with some pictures of him from our trip:

Thursday, June 19, 2014

The rush to recreate

I think this is like the third or fourth year in a row that we started our summer traveling at the very moment the boys were released from school. I don’t know if we’re just overenthusiastic or what, but I keep forgetting that that’s not really a good idea. Kids tend to want to have parties and things to celebrate—and ours have missed a ton of those because we’re always too busy shoving them and all their belongings in the car 15 seconds after the last bell rings.

I remember one year we got out the backpacks to get ready for the first day of school, and they were still full of crap from the previous June — including A LUNCH — because we’d just thrown them in the house and forgotten about them.

Oh, well. I’ve learned the hard way that if you don’t make plans, the summer will completely slip away from you before you get the chance to do anything. And now Dex has a JOB (yes, you heard that right, relatives; it’s at a car wash), which might really start throwing a wrench into my yay-let’s-go-hiking plans if I’m not proactive.

So we GOT PROACTIVE and WENT HIKING, darn it. It was awesome:

Monday, June 16, 2014

Back from vacation

I’m always a little paranoid about announcing online that I’m going on vacation—you never know if one of your 25 followers is also a burglar who lives near the Billings area and covets your crappy secondhand furniture—but anyway, I’m back! Can’t talk now, Dopey crisis, but there are a whole bunch of anecdotes and photos from the national parks of southern Utah forthcoming.

And, hey, it feels like my calf is really healed this time, so I’m going to try running again after the work disaster subsides.

Wednesday, June 4, 2014

In pursuit of a non-humiliating run

Urgh. I guess if I’m claiming to be training for a race then I should actually tell you how it’s going.

So I put a run on the schedule yesterday. The plan was to walk five minutes/jog five minutes as a warm-up, then run at a steady, easy pace for 10 minutes. I walked my five minutes and then jogged exactly three steps before realizing that my left calf was having none of it. I didn't reinjure it or anything; it’s just not healed yet. And it also hates me.

But it still doesn't hurt to walk at an incline, so that’s what I’ve been continuing to do. So boring. So sweaty. So—and just prepare yourself right now for the very definition of First World whining—painful because there is a blister on my pinky toe. I keep reminding myself that I’m doing this so I don’t let my awesome teammates down. (Think of the children!) It would also be nice to have a non-humiliating run for my own sake, though. But because of all my injuries and lack of commitment to a good diet—I think I’ll leave the details to your imagination—this race is coinciding with a huge trough of out-of-shapeness. Even when I was 40 pounds heavier, at least I could run for 30 minutes straight.

I’m going to assume this is the low point of my eight-week training adventure and buck up now.

Sunday, June 1, 2014

Injury report

I completed my first week of training for my 5K—three total workouts of walking steeply uphill for 20 minutes. My calf and hip feel fine again. I think I’ll do one more walking-only workout tomorrow just to be extra cautious, and then I’ll try to run some. AFTER warming up really well. The walking sounds kind of lame, but it really is hard enough to count as real training, based on my heart rate and perceived exertion.

See me throwing the fancy training terms about!

I am also very happy that my shoulder is significantly better. I can stretch my arm overhead now in ways that were causing me huge pain a month ago, but I occasionally still find arm positions (usually in yoga, or while trying to sleep) that hurt. It also snaps and crackles in all sorts of exciting new ways. And it is so weak. It wasn’t that long ago I could do between 10 and 20 (I forget) push-ups with my feet elevated on a stair. Now I can’t do a single regular push-up, and it’s darned hard to even do one from my knees. But I don’t think I’m going to put too much effort into that until I’m fully healed.

I guess I’m glad I’ve already been to physical therapy for all these injuries at one time or another—I actually know what to do to fix them on my own. Can’t really say whether vitamin D is also helping, but it’s nice to have an excuse to get outside and just bask in it.