My Passion Experiment – Week Three Summary

Good Morning,

Today marks three weeks that I undertook to change my outlook and try to inject a spark back into my life. I had to read back on three weeks ago because I’m certainly feeling a lot better than I was then! Some of the main things that I’ve been trying to do are to be more present and to pay myself more respect. Those two things pretty much encompass all the other little things such as eating healthy foods, getting exercise, reducing social media/tech use, reducing spending, eating at the table, etc.

This past Friday I was boldly reminded that while I’m improving at both being present and being respectful, I still have a distance to go and a lot of “past habits” to unravel and remodel. I had initially decided to “scale in” my bike commuting, one day the first week, two days the next week and then either two again or maybe three the following week, depending on how I felt. Instead of respecting my plan and myself, I decided to jump right from one day per week (the first full commute) right into three times last week (and back to back no less). I did so while also battling a hefty dose of allergies and allergy medication. Monday was a good commute, Thursday was a reasonable commute and then on Friday morning before I’d even gotten dressed, I had a very loud voice in my head saying “You should not be riding today, your body is beat!”. And….of course…I ignored it. “Push through”, I told myself. “You’ll have the weekend to recover”, I said. So I hopped on my bike and made it to work where I sat all day knowing I was in for an ass kicking on the way home. But, once here via Pedals, the only way home is to…well….pedal. Long story short, I got halfway up the hill, stopped to take a break where the hill gets steeper and then crashed to the ground still clipped to the bike when I tried to get going again. My body was beat and my legs didn’t have enough left to give to get enough power to get my bicycle going on the steep incline. After (stupidly) declining help from a very kind man who offered to drive me and my bike to the top of the hill, I gave my head a shake and called the hubby’s son to come and get me. I baled halfway home. And instead of feeling bad about not finishing my commute, I felt sad and guilty that I didn’t listen that morning when my Self was hollering at me to leave the bike at home.

This weekend I made it up to my Self though, I went shopping with my mom and sister, made turkey soup with a bone broth base, closed my bedroom door and took a two hour nap (by mid-day on Saturday my body was begging to sleep…..that heavy sleep of recovery), got taken out for dinner by Ray, drank lots of water, took Gracie on a sunny 5km stroll, hit the mall for some tea, had a hot bath, did some foam rolling, ate veggies and eggs and homemade chicken chili. I’ve been craving carbs like absolute crazy since last Thursday and have been trying not to completely ignore it since it must be based in some sort of need, but have been trying to fulfill the urges with acceptable things like yams, mounds of veggies, apples & berries.

So that’s Week Three of My Passion Experiment. I got burned by not listening to a message that was coming through loud and clear. Duly noted and will continue to listen and work on being present and respecting myself.

So what’s up this week?

No biking for the week, my allergies are awful this morning, tomorrow is supposed to be rainy, Wednesday I have an appt after work, Thursday I’m busy after work and Friday we leave right after work on our road trip! I’m actually really alright with missing a week of bicycling, my legs are so stiff and sore! I think I pooched my scale in plan and need to take a breather. I’m going to hit the gym a couple days in the morning and work on rowing and some hill interval training and do some tanning. At the moment it’s not looking good for cycling next week either due to the weather, but I mustn’t forget, it’s still VERY early in the season!

In relating my Friday commute story to my co-workers this morning, my boss said to me “You should quit. You’ve fallen three times and that hill is not going away. Admit you’ve failed and forget about it.” I was stunned, jaw = dropped. I “failed”??? This is all a brand new endeavor for me, I expect some bumps and bruises and a learning curve. “Quit”?? Because it’s hard? Or because sometimes it hurts? Or because it’s not going perfectly? I told him that I would never “quit” something because it was too hard, but that I have revised my plan and will take the longer but slightly less steep route home for the next little while as I increase my biking muscles and my cardiac endurance. He said, “You just don’t know when to throw in the towel.” I have NEVER run across someone who would advise a person to quit when the going gets tough rather than dig deeper or revise the plan or find another way. I was completely shocked and neared tears this morning. Obviously we all have “failure voice” in our heads already that we have to quiet and convince not to sabotage us…..but to have someone actually say “Admit you’ve failed and quit”……completely out of my realm of experience! Especially since it’s only been two weeks!


In Practice

Just over a week ago I wrote a list of things that I could do that were solely for the purpose of showering myself with self-respect and care.  Things as big as going on a road trip (booked!) to as small as reading for 20 minutes before lights out.  Things like making a salt scrub or going on an evening coffee date.  Going tanning, attending the gym, getting a haircut, waxing my underarms, making my own kombucha & bone broth, filing my nails, waxing my legs, making my own shampoo, spending one evening a week laying on the couch, doing the Coquitlam Crunch.  I wrote the list on a scrap of paper and then stuffed it into my date book.  I haven’t looked at the list since then but it seems that simply writing it down was enough to bear fruit.


I have felt an attitude shift in the last week….nearly imperceptible but definitely there.  That spirit of keeping my commitments to myself and of doing things because I FEEL good after, it seems to be making a difference.  An excellent example of this has been my inner voice.  I’d decided earlier in the week that I would go to the gym on Sunday morning and when Sunday morning arrived it was nearly impossible to leave my cozy bed at 8:30 in the morning and get in my car to go and work hard.  But….my inner voice said to me, plain as day “You made the commitment, anything less than going is disrespectful.”  When there I did some interval training on the bike (thought I’d best get my bike legs going…more on this later) and then went rowing. My goal was 3,000 meters.  Normally I stop at each 1,000 meters for a rest but I didn’t feel that I needed to.  When I got to 2,000 I decided to push on to the end without stopping.  With around 750 meters to go my determination started to falter.  And then my inner voice kicked in.  It told me to picture rowing on water, picture the sun on my face and the gorgeous view, the oars in my hands (which is a bit strange since I’ve never rowed anywhere but a Concept2 in the gym).  Think of how proud I would feel when I made it to 3,000.  To remember how good my body feels when it’s fit and healthy.  I had me think of earning my breakfast and how good it would taste.  And that inner chat was on repeat.   Not once did it say a negative word.  It didn’t tell me I was fat so I deserved to suffer through the workout.  It didn’t tell me to think of losing weight.  It didn’t tell me that I was being punished for the bacon I ate the day before.  It just kept refreshing a beautiful summer water scene in my mind and the air from the flywheel was a summer breeze on my face as I glided across the water.  It kept reminding me that I was capable and to just get it done and I did.


It hasn’t been all “gym” successes though.  There’s been an early morning walk through the park with a coffee, there was an evening coffee date on a night when I was feeling bummed out, there’s been gorgeous fresh fruit and eggs for snacks, there’s been a nice glass of wine in the fading warmth of a nice day.





Obviously it’s not all sunshine and kitten kisses, some days it’s just downright hard to maintain an attitude of “on purpose” and to do the things that are right, but overall I’m starting to feel a bit brighter.

On a fun but also terrifying note,  I test rode my bicycle to work this past weekend.  My honest assessment will follow some pertinent points:

A)     I had attended the gym and did bike intervals and rowing that morning

B)     I had a large breakfast at 11am and a hard-boiled egg and some fruit around 2pm

C)     I gave myself a very false sense of confidence due to having the incorrect route in my head

So my assessment?  It was SO HARD….and it’s going to get SO MUCH HARDER!  The route to work is mostly downhill, it was 8.25km and it took me around 27 minutes.  There were a couple of hills in the route there that I had forgotten about and which sapped my confidence right off the start.  However, I made it to work safely and feel that I should be able to do that on a workday morning.  Ray met me down at my office in his truck in order to make sure I had backup if anything went wrong.  After a quick water stop and a banana, I hopped back on my bike and headed for home.  Bearing in mind that it was nearly 6pm, I knew that I wasn’t going to bike all the way home, I just wanted to get the “traffic-y” part out of the way so I knew my route.  I was SO glad that Ray and his truck were there because I was completely spent about a quarter of the way back home.  After arriving home I downloaded my ride and took a look at it and am by turns, really stoked and really nervous!


This is a map of the elevation of my ride to work…..and I’ve marked with two little arrows the “hills” I was referring to.  They are mere blips.  Now picture this graph in the reverse because that is the way home!  The only thing keeping me from selling my bicycle and never even considering this wacky “bicycle commuter” thing again, is the fact that I have actually done it before.  I successfully rode up this hill on that same bicycle about 3 years ago.  And I KNOW that it didn’t take me more than an hour.  So….I’m not in as excellent shape as I was back then……but I sure will be by the time summer rolls around!  My plan is to ride one day this week (Wednesday), two days next week and then three days each week thereafter….weather permitting, of course.  And, as a pre-success reward for myself, I bought new huge saddlebags (for my lunch and change of clothes), a new rear taillight and new riding gloves. I’m really excited to get this started!

I think that’s about all for me…..I’ve been putting My Passion Experiment into practice in tangible, measurable ways…and while I’m not actually measuring it, I can feel it starting to build and I’m so glad for that.

Boating, Planting, Riding

The sun is blazing in through my window at the moment and I’m a split between happy that it’s sunny and annoyed that I have to work instead of being able to just hang out on my grass!

I have tonnes of pictures today so here’s the weekend recap.

Friday afternoon I had what I can only assume is mild anxiety, I was overly sensitive to noises, irritable and in general feeling like I was going to crawl out of my skin at every turn.  What is not great for that is getting into my car as the passenger in a torrential downpour and feeling completely out of control and like we were going to crash at any moment.  After three or four instances of me gasping or shrieking “slow DOWN!” and Ray and I bickering about whether or not I was being ridiculous or he wasn’t paying attention, I just had to close my eyes.  That feeling is not one I’ve ever experienced before and I did not like it, not one bit!  I’m not sure where this has come from or what triggers it and in the moment there is bloody nothing that I could do to make it go away. 

Friday night we got a call regarding Olive and the sad news is that her current family has changed their minds.  It’s a bit of a twisted story but the ultimate result is that Olive gets to stay where she is happy and comfortable and loved and we will continue our search for our new dog.

Saturday morning I thought sleeping in was a good idea and Ray thought bouncing on the bed chanting “waffle, waffle, waffle” was a better idea so off we went to a neighboring city diner that we like where he had his precious waffles and I bleary-eyed ordered a bacon & mushroom omelette with no cheese and salad on the side rather than hashbrowns.  (being woken up by a 54 year old man having a waffle-tantrum is possibly the funniest thing I’ve experienced in recent history)

After breakfast we headed out to the campsite where we’re supposed to be staying this coming weekend.  Our province (British Columbia) has been experiencing some wide spread flooding due to the snowpack melting and the heavy rains we’ve been having.  We thought we should go and check on our campsite since it’s right along a river.  So far the river hasn’t flooded into the area but the water table has risen so much that the seepage up from the ground is incredible.  *******update:  as I typed this Ray just called me and said that an area north of us received 100mm (4”+ of rain over a 12 hour period, their entire month’s worth and all that water will be coming our way in about 4-6 days….right in time for the weekend……so we’ve officially called off our camping********

This is where we would have been staying next weekend. Sad.

We headed over to a neighboring campsite to take a look and they have definitely been flooded by the river.

The left side is normally gorgeous riverside campsites.


We headed towards home a different way than we’d come in and encountered a “Road Closed Due To Flooding” barricade.  Ray, not one to be deterred by something so petty, decided that my Jetta (MY JETTA!) was fully capable of making the crossing and we ended up going boating, Volkswagen-style. 

Can you see the look on my face??

The rest of Saturday we hung around home watching it bucket with rain and then finally decided that we were stir-crazy and called a spontaneous pub night.  The pub we love (John B, Tara) has a huge round table in the middle with an enourmous fireplace in the center and that’s where we sat and drank dark maple beer and watched the rain gush down outside.  Very nice evening!

Sunday the skies had cleared and it was time for the wagon to get planted.  I kept to my $20 budget and got enough orange, black and white flowers to fill up all the pots. 

See? Sunshine!!!!

I dug one of my garden roosters out, plunked him in the corner and parked my wagon in the front yard.  It was very difficult to get a decent picture of it but rest assured, it looks awesome!  And as it will be sunny again today, the new flowers should settle in nicely!

Finally done!

We went for a motorcycle ride yesterday after planting and then came home and toasted a successful ride with a beer in the driveway.  Dinner got made and then we hopped on our bicycles and took a hilly, sweaty ride to Dairy Queen for a small treat and then pedaled (all uphill) on the way home.  It felt so, so, SO good to burn up my leg muscles on the hills and breath hard and sweat.  SO GOOD that I anticipate having no problem going to the gym tomorrow morning!  

After work tonight I’m going to go for a walk/jog in the park and then my front garden needs weeding.  Since our camping is toast we’re going to be hosting our family bbq at our house rather than a campsite.  My dad has never seen our house and I haven’t seen my dad in almost 3 years so of course everything needs to be absolutely perfect.  We’ll be busy this week cleaning and cooking and errands because even though we’re not going to be able to get away for three days camping, I don’t want to spend the long weekend at home sucked into doing chores and errands, I want my three days off and that means I’ll work hard this week to make sure everything is done!

I’m off to go and open my window and let that warm summer air in before it’s gone!

SO Glad It’s Friday!

Remember yesterday how I said that I don’t enjoy massages?  Well that was solidified last night after my appointment.  I left there feeling horrible.  HORREEEBLE.  Nauseated and my eyes were all wonky and my head felt like it was jammed inside a big feather pillow.  I suspect it was probably because she gave me a deep tissue massage where my injuries are and there’s lactic acid and other toxins that have built up there which got released into my blood stream.  Whatever the reason, I felt like crap, I was irritable and tired and generally lovely to be around.  😉

Ray was actually home before I even left for my appointment but he begged off making dinner anyway and asked if he could just take me out instead, my choice of location.  I had no energy with which to complain and no real reason why that wouldn’t work so we went out for dinner to a favourite restaurant and then hit up Costco on the way home.  Unfortunately going out to that particular restaurant does not yield leftovers (her portions are perfect for one meal) so after having been at work all day, yucky massage and then going for dinner and groceries, when I got home near bedtime I still had to make my lunch for today.  THAT is when this whole paleo/primal/grain free/whatever-you-want-to-call-it lifestyle really sucks.  When people ask me if the way I eat is difficult, I always say it’s not.  Because it isn’t.  Until you just want to throw yourself at your bed and not be standing in the kitchen for 30 minutes preparing a balanced day of food.  When going somewhere and buying your lunch the next day isn’t an option, this whole grain free thing can feel like a bit of a trap.  Fortunately this set of circumstances doesn’t happen very often and the benefit of staying true to the theme is well worth any inconvenience that comes about occasionally.

I did not go to the gym this morning, there’s no real excuse except that I felt like crap and didn’t make the effort to get out there.  It happens.

This weekend we’re babysitting Ray’s daughter’s dog.  His name is Kaos and he is ENORMOUS.  Easily 120+ pounds.  He’s also a big suck, sensitive and whiny and fragile.  Should be interesting.  I’ll take a picture/video of him this weekend and post it here, the dog is massive, it’s hilarious.

I think that’s about it for me.  We have very little planned for this weekend and “sleeping in on Saturday” has been discussed more than once this week so I think I won’t get away with getting us up for an early morning walk….which is, honestly, just fine by me!  It is supposed to be sunny & warm…fingers crossed….right now I’m wearing a t-shirt, a winter wool sweater, jeans and my heater is going under my desk! 

Anyway, if it is nice weather then I think we’re going to put our bicycles in the back of Ray’s truck and drive to a great bicycling area that’s a bit too far from our house to start from (Colony Farm for the local readers among you).  There’s up to a 40km easy trail ride that we could do but I doubt we’ll go that far.  And, if it’s not nice this weekend, I’m almost positive that the house would appreciate getting cleaned.

And last, I ordered from here for Ray’s birthday next week.  I think it’s a hilarious concept and a delicious sounding product, fun for a surprise instead of me baking him a cake.

 Have a great weekend!

New Rules of Lifting (for Women)

Happy Wind-day….I mean…Monday.  We’re having a massive wind storm here today, the 60 year old building that I work in is creaking and groaning something fierce!  Totally freaky!  Hopefully our power stays on or it’ll be a very long day!
I didn’t get up to much this weekend, the Alien Baby went postal on Friday night (in Costco, so thanks for wrecking that outing!) and I was flattened until Saturday afternoon…..which meant I didn’t go to spinning…….but since my previous post and discovering that spinning isn’t really what I want right now, I didn’t feel badly about it.  We went to our motorcycle meeting in the morning and then did errands and groceries and once we realized we had no plans and a whole afternoon to ourselves, we drove out to a town about 45 minutes away so that I could test drive a Fiat.  I really have no plans to buy a new car since in two months I’ll be car payment free and don’t want to get saddled with another huge bill, but it was fun to dream.  Those teeny little Italian cars sure can go!  They feel huge and solid and stable on the inside and they corner like a race car!  Lots of fun!  Next weekend we’re going to test drive a VW Jetta!

Fiat 500, super cute!


Shiny! Sure wish this was in my driveway right now!

Sunday morning my esthetician came over and did a couple of regular services for me and stayed for a coffee (Ray is not-so-secretly infatuated with her…it’s cute!) and then she left and we went for a drive and then came home and I went to the mall and bought new pants.  As Tara so delicately told me when she grabbed the baggy ass of my work pants, it’s time to get pants that fit!  😉  Ridiculously, I’ve been swimming around in a 14 and the pants I bought are a very flattering size 10 so I’m very happy about that!  Pants shopping can go either way for me, if they fit in the waist then the legs are super tight and if the legs fit then they are gaping huge in the waist.  And don’t even get me started on length!  I flipped a coin as to which mall to go to, hit one store and scored two pairs of flattering black work pants…for $70 total.  And then I lit on out of there like my hair was on fire, no sense testing my luck by hanging around! 
That’s about it for the weekend recap.  I started reading up on my new weight lifting plan yesterday and now just need to pick a date to start.  The plan has you work out 3 times a week and each workout takes about a 35-45 minutes not including the warmup so I think I’ll be stopping after work at the gym on Monday, Wednesday & Friday.  I hate the idea of working out on Fridays but since it’s heavy lifting workouts, they want a day between each and at least two days off in a row.  Not really sure how else to make that work……..unless I bite the bullet and do a 5am Friday morning workout….which could work.
The first phase is 6 weeks long and then you break for a full week.  They do not recommend doing any other sort of interval training (like spinning) while you’re doing the lifting because of the need for recovery.  Jogging on off days is alright because it sends nutrient rich blood to your muscles which aids in recovery….but you’re supposed to really judge how you’re feeling as far as whether you can run or not.  I’m in fairly decent shape so I think I’ll be able to do a bit of cardio along with the weights….but if I can’t?  Then that’s alright too!
And speaking of the weights.  The idea of this program is to lift heavy weights in order to build muscle.  I want muscle!  Muscle speeds metabolism, we all know that.  But muscle is also sexy.  Tone and strength is fit and fit is sexy.  I have no fear of getting bulky, I’m not taking steroids and I’m not on the outer fringes of genetics which causes me to gain muscle at the drop of a hat.  I will simply become stronger and more fit.  On each workout and with each exercise you increase the weight you’re using and decrease the number of reps and build your strength.  Sounds good to me.  
There are two workouts that I’ll be doing for the first six weeks, Workout A and Workout B.  You alternate each one so Monday is A, Wednesday is B, Friday is A etc.  Workout A is as follows:
2 sets of 15 ~ Squats (bodyweight at first and then adding weights)
2 sets of 15 ~ Pushups (starting at a “standing” angle at first and eventually getting to the floor)
2 sets of 15 ~ Seated Rows 
2 sets of 15 ~ Step Ups 
That’s it.  I can’t remember off the hop what Workout B is at the moment but you get the idea that these are full body exercises.  There are no bicep curls or tricep kickbacks.  There are no calf exercises or specific shoulder exercises.  The theory behind this is that the human body is meant to be used in full and if you are going to do a row, you’re using your back, shoulders, biceps, triceps and engaging your core.  They say that there is no point in isolating muscles unless for sport or injury recovery because all you end up doing is changing your body’s natural strength ratio between say, your biceps and your triceps.  No muscle is used exclusively in real life so in this program it’s all full body as well.  Another plus, if you’re not having to work each muscle seperately, you get to be done a lot faster!   
Anyway, I’m sure I’ll be talking more about this as I get into it.  Tonight I’m going to take all my starting measurements and Ray is going to take my “before” pictures (in a bikini, good God!).  I’m not sure I’ll post them right away, it might make more sense to post them once I have some “after” to compare them to.  What do you think, is it worth posting them now?

And this is where I wish I was right now!

There Are Changes Afoot

Forgive me for my absence these last couple of days however I’ve been a bit unsettled and having a hard time getting my thoughts in line. 
Remember about a month and a half ago I realized that my body was asking (or begging) for me to modify my diet and eliminate grains.  The results from this change have been huge.  It’s been a bit of a struggle sometimes in staying the course since “the course” is different than anything I’ve ever done before and is, in fact, the opposite of what conventional wisdom and our medical and government preaches.  The benefits to me though have been amazing and I continue to discover new (and wonderful) benefits of eating in this way…more on that later.
So 5 years ago I listened to my body when it screamed out that right then, right in that moment was the time to make the change from being a depressive binge eater, pack a day smoker, inactive fat woman to being healthy and responsible and to taking care of myself.  Complete success.  Then a month and a half ago I listened to my body when, over time, it was quietly asking for me to remove grains.  Complete success and ongoing.  And now I would be insane not to listen to my body when it’s telling me that what I’m doing for exercise needs to change.  Completely.
Way back when I was at the lowest point of my seemingly endless pit of depression and bingeing I used to dream of running.  I used to have these super vivid dreams of bounding effortlessly down the road, jogging, light as a feather on trails and pathways and beaches.  I was always so upset when I woke up and realized that I was still 260+ pounds and completely unable to recreate that in my life.  Until, later on after some changes were made, I realized that I could learn to jog and I could make those dreams a reality.  It was beautiful.  I would eventually run in the rain, in the wind, in the heat and blazing sunshine.  In the morning or the night, even with bad colds and stomach flus.  Off I would run.  And because it’s what my body wanted and needed I saw excellent results in my physical self and with my mental state and my emotions.  Eventually I burned out….well…..I got injured and had to stop running for three months and when I wasn’t injured any longer I just couldn’t get back into it like I once had.
Enter spinning.  For the last year and a bit I have been dedicated to spinning, I have gone at 6am, 9pm, on weekends and holidays, every single day through Christmas, in snow storms and ridiculous heat outdoors.  As the weather improves, I have integrated trail running into my exercise routine for some variation and cross training.  And I’ve signed up for a 10k in April.
Here’s the problem.  Ever since I eliminated grains, my body has put up a resistance to spinning and jogging.  For one thing, my breathing is shit.  My legs and my body have all the endurance in the world but my cardiovascular system reaches its limit way before my muscular system does.  This is probably the result of my body not yet having adjusted to less carbs in my diet.  For the second thing, every time I go out to spin or jog I feel like there is this little voice in the back of my head saying “This isn’t what I want, this isn’t what we should be doing.”.  Don’t get me wrong, at the end of a spin class or a good trail run I’m glad that I did it, good hard exercise always feels like an accomplishment.  But it’s not quite right. 
So………like back when I used to dream about running…………I have been having dreams about weight lifting, kettle balls and the like.  And so, that little voice that isn’t into cardio anymore and the random dreams about pushing weights…..they cannot be ignored.  I need to make a new plan that involves maybe one day of cardio a week because it is important for my heart health…..and then devise a weight routine.  I need to see where this will take me.  Because right now I believe I’ve gone as far as I can go doing what I’m doing now.  Time to shake things up!  I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t a little scared about making this change……’s way away from what I’m used to.  But then, so was grain-free and that’s turned out great!


This weekend was a blur, some good, lots not.  First, the food (of course!).

I made an Egg Cup recipe that I found online the other day.  They look beautiful and I cannot wait to taste them!

Bacon on the bottom, thin sliced red onion, mixed greens, balsamic roasted tomato and then the egg!

I also made a shepherd’s pie recipe that was topped with Kabocha Squash.  I can’t say I’ll ever work with Kabocha again, it’s an expensive squash, stains everything orange and the yield you get from it doesn’t seem worth the work.  It has a very large seed pod inside of it so even a huge Kabocha doesn’t give that much flesh.  I was always kind of scared of Kabocha because of the weird shape of it.  It’s a fairly soft squash, easy to cut.  Bake face down at 400F for about a half hour and it’s quite done. 

OK, done with the food.  Friday night Ray and I spent a couple of hours cleaning our house.  Top to bottom.  And on Friday when we sat down to have a drink and a relax, it felt amazing to have a clean house.  I’ve been spot cleaning the past little while but to actually have a totally clean house.  Lovely. 

Saturday morning I got up and went to spinning where I pushed myself hard but definitely noticed a lack of conditioning compared to when I was going three times a week.  But…I was happy with my effort and that’s all that matters. We went out for breakfast at Waffle House (not the same as the US Wafflehouse….just a standard diner) where I had my new favourite, bacon & mushroom omelette, no cheese and a caesar salad, no croutons.  Aaaaaand……then we came home…………and the apocolypse that was in our house took up the rest of our day.   I will not get into details except to say that we have an elderly dog and it’s a good thing we also have an industrial carpet cleaner…..and in some cases dark paint.  Don’t ask.  It was so, SO upsetting that I could not stop crying.  In fact this morning in retelling parts of it to Tara it almost made me cry again.  In addition to the horror that was the next two hours of cleaning, it meant that I also missed the spinathon.  At morning spinning I was told I could make a donation and drop by….and because of the shit-show (literally), I missed it completely.

Later that afternoon we went for a nice walk just the two of us and stopped at a corner store close to our house to get a bottle of water.  The little store has a hidden gem inside, a veritable farm of white orchids.  One of those beautifule white orchids made its way into my arms for the walk home, a token, perhaps, for all the crying?

Surprisingly low maintenance. Water every two weeks and otherwise leave it be!

Saturday evening Ray’s ex wife stopped by at our request to impartially take a look at our elderly dog and give her opinion as someone who doesn’t see her everyday.  Unfortunately she wouldn’t say a word on her thoughts about the end-of-life strategy for Brandy.  She did leave her dog George with us overnight though….which may seem strange on the heels of our own dog issues……but I love George a lot and he actually is good for Brandy………or… the past he has been, unfortunately she is too tired/sick to notice him at this point.  He noticed me though and tucked himself into bed with me on Sunday morning after Ray got up and then flattened himself on me for morning coffee later on.

George is a suck. But I love him!

Sunday morning we went up to Mossum Creek Hatchery where Kyle (Ray’s son)is president….he took us on a very informative tour and then for a little walk down the creek.  It was a bit chilly out but not raining and very gorgeous!

Mossum Creek, starting to gear up for spring run off!

That’s about it for the weekend.  There were some lovely high points and some very low points.  Overall the weekend was a bit traumatizing, actually and was definitely assisted by a drink!

Vodka and .... well ..... vodka.

A jog after work tonight and tomorrow is weekly weight in!  Yay sunshine and yay good choices all weekend regardless of stress (vodka not withstanding!)!

Old Business

An update on yesterday’s post:

A) the rib eye steak was not that good.  It was beautifully cooked and instead of being ‘pink’ where it rare, it was a gorgeous red (if you’re a veggie, sorry, this probably grosses you out).  But it was kind of tough & dense.  OK, really tough.  Although it occurred to me that if we stuck to only grass fed organic meat for a few months and then ate a grocery store steak, we might find the texture quite mushy.  I guess it’s all what you get used to.

B) the spinathon.  Really should have investigated that awhile ago.  You have to form a team and do a bunch of fund raising to the tune of around $1000 before you get to do it.  Guess I won’t be doing that tomorrow!

C) I did not go for a jog last night.  My mini fast left me completely under fueled and….well…..I didn’t really want to go.  So Ray and I went and walked that trail together instead.  It was flipping cold out, too!  When I got home I hopped in the bath to thaw out my bum and legs!

Now for new business….which is also still sort of old business.  Last May I rode my bicycle on a 40km trail ride for charity.  Since Ray was hurt at the time I rode it by myself (with 150 other people).  Around the third kilometer I took a wrong turn (don’t even ask!), went 2km out of my way and had to turn around and go back.  Not being one to enjoy being dead last, I put feet to pedals and started to make up some ground.  Until kilometer 8.  You see, it was raining the entire time.  I was bent on catching up.  I went over a little wooden bridge.  I hit what I thought was my back brake but was actually my front brake, skidded out on the bridge and crashed, flew over the handlebars and crashed into the side of the bridge.  I ultimately ended up partially dislocating my shoulder and really killing my knee.  However…..being alone on the ride and not one to give up, I finished the next 32 kilometers.  Probably not the smartest thing I’ve ever done.  Upon finishing the ride and getting home, we realized my injuries were a little worse than I thought.  Whatever, I still finished.  The next day my right arm was useless to me and off we went to the chiropractor where he fixed me right up.  Why do I tell you all this?  Because I now have a weak spot in my shoulder which recurs every once in awhile.  Like right now.  I slept wrong and now my shoulder is screwed.  SCREWED.  So that precludes any sort of jogging for about a week or so until either it corrects itself (it could happen!) or until I get to my chiropractor next Saturday.  Look out, spinning!

My knee, Day 1-3 post crash!

Also discussing spinning, it has come to my attention that I have been much too lax with the whole exercise thing.  Since I was leaving my schedule open to be free to jog on sunny days and then the sunny days don’t come often enough, I’ve really been pokin’ the puppy as far as consistent exercise goes and that doesn’t make me feel good physically or mentally.  So tonight I’m sleeping in my gym clothes and getting up for spinning in the morning.  I will also spin Monday and Thursday next week and hopefully on a non spinning day it’ll be nice enough to get out and go for a walk. 

I bought my liquid iron supplement last night, I’m doubling up the dosage for a few days to see if I can start to feel a little better, and I’m going to exercise even though I don’t feel like it…..because a body in motion stays in motion and a body at rest gets lazy and fat if there is not a definitive end to the rest.  That’s my theory, anyway!  😉

Adrift For A Day

I left my phone on the dining room table this morning (at least I hope I did!) so I am somewhat adrift today. On the plus side, it’s beautifully sunny outside…which I would snap a picture and show you but, alas, I cannot.

My belly still hasn’t really recovered from the other day, I’m still really bloated and uncomfortable. I’m very unhappy about it but I am staying the course because I am not doing anything wrong, this isn’t an error on my part or a failure or a mistake. It’s just my body unhappy about something. I made a chili on Sunday which we had for dinner Sunday and then I had it on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday for lunch and we had it again for dinner last night (yes, it made a lot!). There was no beans or anything grainy in it and yet each time I ate it I felt a little worse. Up until yesterday when we had it for dinner again and Ray also started to feel badly. So either I food poisoned us slightly or something about the huge amount of veggies in the chili is bothering both of us. I can’t see it and yet we both felt exactly the same yesterday after dinner. Maybe the veg fermented? Who knows!

Since that’s what I packed in my lunch today, I’m going to do a mini-fast instead. I’ll skip the chili and just have an apple and some almonds and a whole bunch of water and leave it at that. I should be fine until I get home at 4pm, on grain free your blood sugar stays much more stable so while I might be hungry, I shouldn’t feel too badly.

I already had my morning salad and I have a new favourite salad topping. Whole walnuts! I don’t love walnuts just to eat in my hand but I do love them to crust things and I like them in smoothies so I thought I’d try them in my salad. Very delicious. They have the perfect texture, soft enough you can fork them and crunchy enough that you know you’re eating nuts. They were sprinkled over mixed greens with sliced red pepper, sliced radish, chunked avocado and some canned salmon. Very satisfying!

Speaking of new things that are a pleasant surprise, I found these tablets when we went to our local outdoor adventure store (MEC) and thought they would be perfect for on our motorcycles on those long, hot riding days. We already pack water & ice in our cooler so to also have to pack around some type of electrolyte drink on those extra hot days is troublesome. Enter, NUUN.  It’s electrolyte tabs, 12 of them was a little over $3 and does 192 ounces of water. The tabs are for a 16 oz water bottle but they’re scored down the middle so you can actually break them in half. I tried the Tri Berry one the other day. They are effervescant when you drop them in the water and they dissolve in about a minute and a half, no stirring required (I did it in a big mug, I imagine in a water bottle you could shake a little to make it dissolve faster). Comes out a light pinkish colour, clear and not too sweet. I quite enjoyed it and will definitely be packing those on bicycle and motorcycle trips alike this year!

Tonight after work I was supposed to eat dinner and then go to spinning……..but you have to understand, today it is nice out. It may not be nice out again for weeks. I just cannot make myself skip the niceness of the trail and go to the gym instead. Fresh air is too rare at this time of year. So I’m hitting the trail again after work.

And when I get home from trail running (which I will have to fuel for extra since I’m having a little fast today) we’re going to BBQ two beautiful 12 oz organic, grassfed rib eye steaks for dinner. With roasted butternut squash and mashed cauliflower. I found these steaks by accident on the way home from visiting my mom on the weekend. Two 12oz organic grassfed free range for $14. Gimme! I never liked steak. Least favourite meat by a landslide. Until Ray made me a rib eye steak one day. I’ve been completely sold every since, they are so, SO flavourful and juicy and fatty and delicious!

That’s it for me today. Tomorrow night Ray is going for dinner with his mom which I will happily skip out on. And then Saturday is regular 8:30am spinning……and a spinathon. So I’ll be spinning at least twice on Saturday. Hopefully on Saturday night our friends who have the hot tub will invite us over! 😉


Oh, The Agony!

OK, how do you go from 30 days ago, eating grains and cereal and cookies and rice and feeling sorta crappy but not toooo horrible….to eating what is probably a trace amount of “something” that was an unmarked ingredient or an additive in a teeny amount and end up having a 6 month bloat-baby stomach and be in pain during the night to the point you’re wimpering in your sleep?  Last night I ate something that caused a huge upset in my belly.  I had the same breakfast and lunch that I’ve had the rest of the week and for dinner we had baked chicken with roasted veggies, a glass of wine and I had a coconut macaroon for dessert.  I think I’m going to have to start keeping a food journal that includes everything right down to the sauces/dressings that we use because this is crazy!  I haven’t been too worried about dressing/sauce ingredients that contain soy by products or small amounts of corn starch or corn sugar because the amount a person is actually consuming is minute.  I would hate to think that cleaning up my intake has had such a dramatic effect that now I’m having absurd food sensitivities! 
We have a meeting tonight for the motorcycle club that we’re members of.  I’m the “editor” of the “newsletter” for our club.  I’ve recently decided that the “newsletter” is old technology and instead of trying to create enough content every month to squeeze out a newsletter….which then gets emailed to everyone’s inbox and is regularly over 6MB…..I created a blog.  Now…..since you’re all reading my blog you’re all familiar with blogging.  It’s a great medium for instant communication and little fun articles etc.  The people that I have to convince of this are people who do not have smartphones, do not read blogs, still pay their bills by mail or at the teller (yes, “bank teller”, do they still have those?).  You get me?  Should be interesting.
Last night on the way home from work I went and bought my reward for my 30-days.  It’s a wee bit different than I had planned but I think it works perfectly!  The company is called Black Drop Designs and the picture that I took does not do it justice!  I have it on the same chain as another pendant that my sister bought me a few years ago, I think they complement each other very well.  The long silver one says “THE GOOD LIFE IS HOW YOU LIVE IT” and is an Andrea Waines design.  
That’s it for me today, no exercise since Monday and I realized this morning that I haven’t gone Thursday night spinning in a month and a half and I haven’t gone spinning at all in two weeks.  I do believe I will correct that tomorrow at 6:30pm!