Posts Tagged ‘New Year’s resolutions’

Day 11: Lazy Day, Kinda

January 11, 2014

My Janathon effort today was pretty lame. It poured rain all day & I just didn’t feel like going outdoors to exercise, nor did I feel like driving to the gym. I had to improvise. I did 30 min. of strength training exercises on my yoga mat. Pushups, planks, donkey kicks, leg lifts, crunches. I also mixed in some yoga poses including Forward Bend, Pigeon, Bridge, Happy Baby, Eye of the Needle, Downward Facing Dog, Cat/Cow, Locust, Cobra & Eagle. Then I rolled my legs. That was it, but hey, it counts.

JoansList

On Day 8, I mentioned how my strength training fitness instructor, Joan, inspired me to follow her lead by declaring some self-improvement goals that are health & wellness related, to “be a better person”. She’d chosen her own & encouraged us to think of our own. I may change some of mine (I realized today that I forgot a plan for stress management… maybe I’ll add some meditation or creative-relaxation task, some art perhaps?), but for now, I’m starting with:
– Drink 48 oz. water daily
– Stretch daily
– Cardio 4x/wk minimum
– Strength training 2x/wk minimum
– Stop nail-biting!
– No flour (meaning eat whole grain, not pulverized/processed grain)
– No sugar (meaning lay off the high-cal desserts!)
– Sleep 7 hrs./night minimum

I used the little checklist-chart Joan made as my frame & taped it to the kitchen cupboard. It looks big, but it’s only 8.5 x 3 inches & has room to document the rest of this month. The typed cues are goals I kept from her list. The handwritten goals are specific to me. You can see from my dots, I’m making good progress so far :-)

Day 8: Adding Stress Management to My Plan

January 8, 2014

StrengthClass

Thanks to Joan, my lovely strength training class instructor, I’m suddenly feeling motivated to make an extra effort at healthy life changes. She shared her “self-improvement” list with us & challenged us to come up with one of our own. I’ve got a lot of room for improvement. I gained a goodly amount of weight over the holidays (Thanksgiving thru New Year’s). My pants barely fit. I’ve also succumbed to a lot of stress, biting my nails down to the quick (especially disappointing to me, as I love nail polish). I just mentioned in my Day 7 post how not getting enough sleep affects me — yet I still insist on staying up late reading or watching TV online. I’m definitely in need of a daily checklist of self-improvement, so it’s in the works.

Meanwhile, I did my Janathon fitness today (which counts for Jantastic too): run-training on a treadmill at the gym. My recovery build-up continues, yay! I walked a 5 min. warm-up, then did alternating 2 min. walk/run intervals for 20 min., then walked another 5 min. as cooldown. Closed w/15 min. stretching & some ab exercises on the mat. Had planned to stay longer but I was out of gas (too close to dinner & I was starving). Oh well, good enough :-)

Note: I thought of Travelling Hopefully & Purl Gurl today. I was in a waiting room, feeling rather stressed as I fretted over some work I was doing on my laptop. Another woman came into the waiting room, sat down & took out some knitting. Whenever I glanced over at her, I could feel myself relaxing, even tho I was still working. Hm, I think I need to hire a woman to come sit in my office & just knit while I work :-)

Day 8: Lofty 2013 Goals Declared

January 8, 2013

PlaneUK

Tonight’s photo: my sister & I on the plane to England. Yes, we were excited. Yes, it’s a long flight. Yes, we looked exactly like this for the entire flight. (The shared neck pillow was a failed attempt at sleep.)

OK, I’m outing my goals for 2013. But first, my Janathon report: I rode 5.5 mi. on my virtual bike at the gym. My bike! Mine! After the ride, I went into an hour long strength training class that mixes cardio action (jumping, aerobic &/or boxing moves) w/hand weights & mat exercise. I’ve attended this class often over the past year, but today’s session totally kicked my ass (that’s “arse” for my British pals). It’s a regular Tues. PM class, but since Christmas & New Year’s both fell on Tuesdays (gym was closed), we all had a nice rest for ourselves. Which we paid for dearly. Because our instructor (Joan = awesome) used her break to draft a new format for us. We could barely keep up! I already know I am going to be sore tomorrow. Really intense workout. We pissed & moaned to each other, but afterward, we were glad for the beating — sadistic devils that we are :-)

Janathon, check. Today was my rest day from running. Tomorrow I do weekly run #2 for Jantastic. That’s right, another fitness challenge! More on that in a future post. Let’s get to my 2013 goals [click here for trumpet fanfare]…

1. Reinstate 3x per week runs, without escalating my plantar fasciitis!
2. If that goes well, train for distance again (run some 10Ks this summer)
3. If that goes well, do my first half marathon (Swanzey Covered Bridges Half)
4. Learn to swim freestyle (front crawl stroke)
5. Lose 20 lbs.
6. Get 8 hrs. of sleep 5x a week (go to bed earlier)
7. Declutter my office/studio/house (dump excess possessions)
8. Practice piano 2 hrs. per week
9. Make something artistic once a month
10. Invite a new friend (or “long-lost” one) to tea/lunch once a month

There! The first 6 are directly fitness/health related, but in my opinion, all will work to improve my life. They’ll all be challenging to achieve, too. Tomorrow, I will work on #1. Tomorrow, I will start on #5. But right now, I’m going to get a last-hurrah bowl of ice cream, hunker down on the couch with a book I just got at the library tonight & very soon, try for #6! Goodnight :-)

Janathon Day 8: Gelatinous Blobs in Motion

January 8, 2012

3.6 mi. for today, my longest run of the year so far. Went out w/Jaime & did the same route as January 1, but went further before turning back this time. Nice day (34 °F), tho not as sunny as the forecast predicted. It was cloudy, in fact. And a bit windy. Stupid weathermen! I find it so surprising that with all the technological advances in the world, we still cannot call the weather accurately in advance?

Having been consistent with a daily 2 mi. or so, perhaps this week I’ll try for 3 mi. most days. My legs are fine & now that the pills are deadening my heel pain, I’m OK there too… but oh Lordy, my Christmas belly! Very disappointing. I need to lose some weight. Here’s one thing that’s new to me at the gym: friggin’ mirrors everywhere! I know they are there for weight-lifters to check their proper form & such, but geez, gimme a break! I start Aquatics fitness next week. Please, don’t have mirrors in the pool area…

Prior to the gym, I had never actually seen myself running. All I knew was how I felt when running. Strong, youthful, tight & powerful — happily alive! You can imagine my horror the first time I ran on a treadmill at the gym… & saw my reflection in the dark windows before me :-( I saw an overweight, red-faced, middle-aged woman bouncing along in place. As my friend Rich would say, “Good feelings, GONE.”

My next thought was: “Yikes, that jelly belly has got to GO!” I’m still shaping a plan to lose about 20 lbs. by May 1. New Year’s Resolution #1. And I ordered 2 swimsuits today, so I can learn to swim before summer. New Year’s Resolution #2. Pool workouts start mid-month, to get me accustomed to actually being in water up to my chest. Eeek.

In honor of gelatinous blobs in motion, today’s pics are of jellyfish. The 2 real ones, shown above, had washed up on the Florida beach I ran last spring. Even dead, they’re still fascinating. The others are jellyfish sketchbook art I made over the summer & fall, using paints, colored pencils, glue, ribbons & yarn. Jellyfish are powerful but pretty, jiggly yet graceful… maybe because they swim & don’t run!

New Year Burning Bright

January 1, 2012

I love New Year’s Day. I remember describing why in more depth last year, so I won’t repeat that. I’ll just say that I do glance back, but I like thinking ahead. I always make resolutions. On January 1, it’s not about success or failure yet. Right now, it’s all about hope, inspiration & the joy of a blank page.

These pics are from last night, when we attended a bonfire party just a few miles from home. OK, it was actually a brush-burning. But in our part of NH, burning one’s brush, stumps & assorted treedown is a great reason to have people over for eating hot chili, swilling cold beer & toasting marshmallows. It’s also a great opportunity to gaze into the massive pile of flames & mentally review 2011, while affirming plans for 2012. Falling ash amid rising sparks, a beautifully natural cycle.

The New Year marks Day 1 of Janathon. I was pleased with my novice effort at Junethon, so I’m all in for Janathon. I’m starting with the same attitude. No goals, I’m just playing to see what happens. What happened in June was wonderful. Great fitness, great people, great fun, great achievement. How can I possibly lose?

Today’s Janathon fitness report: ran 3 mi. with Jaime on one of my favorite scenic routes, the Contoocook River Rail Trail. We didn’t time for speed, we just enjoyed ourselves. It was a gorgeous sunny day, a warm(ish) 40°F & surprisingly, there’s no snow yet. Once the snow piles up, this trail will be off limits until spring unless I’m wearing snowshoes or cross-country skis. Good thing I have both :-)