June 30, 2014; So Relaxed!

Oh, alone time, I treasured your every second!  Back on Friday I had begged off of going motorcycle gear shopping with Ray and his son so that I could spend a couple hours alone.  At 9am I took Furface into the trail for an early morning, sweaty walk and by the time I got back, Kyle had come and picked Ray up and they were gone.  I spent the morning taking a long bath, cooking up some protein for the week ahead, drinking (and getting addicted to) bone broth while sitting on my rocking bench outside reading a book.  I had lunch alone, poured myself some tea and then realized that my body was asking for some rest.  A glorious hour later I woke up, did some laundry and then fiddled around outside in the garden.  Ray and Kyle got home around 4 and then we all went together to Andrea’s to pick something up (and check out the newly painted nursery) and then we went out to Maple Ridge to see George.  George is Ray’s ex-wife’s boxer….and before she got together with Jamie, we babysat him on most weekends and taught him how to sleep in our bed with us!  Turns out that George has bone cancer and is approaching his end time.  As soon as we found out on Saturday, there was no question we would go out to see him right away.  He seemed in good spirits and was happy to see us all, including Gracie.  I got some solid snuggles in with him and gave him the world’s supply of soft snout-kisses and ear whispers.  He’s ten years old and they’ve decided (rightfully) that they won’t be aggressively treating him.  When he’s no longer comfortable or in good spirits, he’ll head for the Rainbow Bridge to hang with Brandy, Mattie, Rhysa, Sierra, Snoopy, Paris and all the other pets that our family has loved and lost.

Sunday morning was another up-early and we did some errands and then it was time for me to bite the “don’t like new things” bullet and go on my own to a town an hour away and do some one-on-one motorcycle training.  I was nervous and apprehensive to say the least.  The ride out was cold and a bit drizzly and I had every bad thought and phrase about myself going through my head.  Ugly, stupid, can’t do it, don’t bother, useless, loser.  Once I met the guy (VERY nice, VERY knowledgeable, VERY calming) and we started the training, I put all those shitty thoughts out of my head and replaced it with “I can do it!”.  Honestly, at first it seemed sort of lame and cliché….but it opened up my mind to be able to hear what he was saying and then carry out the instructions….and lo and behold, I COULD do it!  The guy is retired Vancouver Police Department Motorcycle Unit member and has won medals in motorcycle handling and skills courses.  And he teaches you to ride…..like an officer; professionally, confidently and completely in control.  He had a perfect combination of in your face motivation, logical explanations and continuous praise and encouragement.  And the first time that I successfully pulled off a trickier maneuver, I looked in my mirror and he was jumping up and down with his hands in the air cheering. It was so genuine and passionate that it made me even more confident.

Unfortunately halfway through our 2 hour session, my clutch cable jammed and I had to get Ray to come and get me and my bike on the flatdeck.  While we were waiting for him to get there the instructor had me ride his bike through the maneuvers….his 2014 H-D Limited.


I nearly frigging died…..but………..he had enough confidence in what I had learned and he wanted me to prove it to myself.  Crazy!  I ended up doing some tight u-turns and other maneuvers through the cones for a while and then we called it a day.  Fortunately when we got it home, Ray had my bike basically fixed (still needs an $80 part to finish the job but I rode it to work today) and the next lesson is booked for mid of July.  It felt amazing to challenge my fear/anxiety and then have a really awesome result (not the breakdown…that sucked…the part before the breakdown).  Very empowering.

Throughout the weekend I tried to put my critical voice away and focus on how I was feeling and that I am enough just as I am.  I didn’t put makeup on for my alone day on Saturday or my riding school on Sunday, I didn’t heat-straighten my hair and I put on clothes that were comfortable and fit with what I was doing.  And to be truthful, I felt better overall in confidence and self-awareness!  Even this morning I feel still calmer and more at ease and generally accepting of myself.  It’s kind of nice!


January Roadmap Summary


Here we are at the end of January.  To be perfectly honest this has been the most controlled and productive January that I have ever had.  Possibly the most controlled and productive month I’ve had in a very long time.  When I laid out my goals for January, I set them with the best possible intentions given the information that I had at the time.  And now, coming back and assessing my results, I am doing it with complete honesty, no fudge factor. The wins are blue, the fails are red and the cancelled goals are marked in purple with an explanation.  Is there more red on the page than I had hoped to see?  Yes, for sure.  Obviously when I set the goals I’d hoped to achieve them all successfully.  But where the red is and the impact of those fails, overall, is not awful and gives me a foundation with which to plan and measure February.  Here’s how January played out.

Food Budget

Food Budget:  I chose this as a goal because it’s one of our major expenditures although I really had no idea just how major, I’d never tracked it before.  Having said that, picking “$130/week” as the total was pretty much just me throwing a dart into the abyss.  We failed massively on this one.  Sort of.  In reviewing the entire month as a whole, we ate every single meal and snack at home (or on the go but was prepared at home) and the amount of waste we had was nearly none. Total of groceries that got tossed out was one serving of turkey soup, half a head of cabbage, two bunches of parsley and three servings of squash soup that we really tried to like but didn’t.  So for our rather high expenditure, we either ate everything or prepared and froze for future.  February I have taken our total from January, averaged it by day and then reduced it by around 20%.  It’s possible we won’t be able to achieve it but that’s the point of a goal….to try.

Eating Out

Eating Out:  This one, while appearing small on the goals list, was actually HUGE for us and was a complete, 100% success.  We didn’t purchase so much as a snack on the “outside”.  Everything we ate, with the exception of our one meal, came from home.   For February Ray asked that we have two eat out meals in the month because we really enjoy a breakfast out and he didn’t think we should have to choose between breakfast and dinner.  I agreed with that and so in February our goal is to limit eating out to one dinner and one breakfast.

No Spend

No Spend: This one chalks up as a failure on paper, I spent money on things that were not critical to our survival.  However, coming in at a total of $56 for the entire month is amazing for me, a complete change from my past habits. Further, I should point out that the bulk of the total, the $31 at Gourmet Warehouse and the $18 at David’s Tea were spent in the first 5 days of January and to be perfectly honest, I completely forgot that not spending any money was one of my goals.  Habits, right?!  In February we’ve agreed to give ourselves each $50 (which will be doled out in cash) for “stuff” and beyond that, no spending!

Dinner Table

Once again, this one is technically not a complete success….but a HUGE win in our household!  Beyond the “dinners” that I logged for my goals, we ate most weekend lunches and a couple of weekend breakfasts at the table.  This one was a bit of a struggle and, I suspect, will continue to be a struggle from time to time. February has the same goal.  (of note, I did not have to “lead by example” as I thought I might, Ray was right on board all month)

Community Run

Community Run:  this one was a bit of a false goal because I’d already registered for the Chilly Chase in mid December.  But, registering is not the same as actually doing it, so it got marked down as a goal. 100% success!  February does not have a community/charity run in it but March does…so February has some interesting and fun training goals.


Video Blog:  90 Seconds of Real has had a pretty good first month, we’ve had some awesome videos, new followers and a good number of site views.  What we don’t really have is participation from anyone other than the contributors and I’m struggling with finding the magic answer to get people engaged.  February doesn’t have this as a goal but I’ll keep on promoting and plugging and we’ll reassess in another month.

Limit Fruit

Limit fruit:  this goal was designed as a carb-limiting goal and ended up crashing and burning in the first third of January.  While I did terminate the goal for sanity reasons, I have tried to keep an eye on the amount of fruit I’m consuming and I’m avoiding turning to fruit as an easy fallback.  But…the navel oranges are gorgeous right now and they make me happy.


Exclude dairy, grains, sugar:  I consider this goal failed.  Not because I went off the rails, I didn’t.  I consider it failed because I quite easily could have avoided the things I had and I chose not to.  I didn’t need to bite the krispy square, I could have used arrowroot in the stew, the soup didn’t have to have sour cream and saying no thank you to ice cream is perfectly acceptable. February has the same goal.  I would not consider this one a success with anything less than 100% compliance.

Limit Alcohol

Limit alcohol:  This one was a total success, my alcohol consumption went down dramatically and in a couple cases, on my approved days I asked myself if I really even wanted wine and the answer was no.  When I did indulge, it was lovely.  That’s where I wanted to get back to and I did.  February has the same goal.


Gym Dates:  This one is a fail.  I had 75% success with this goal and I’m not sure how I feel about that.  In trying to live intuitively, I sort of feel like I did enough for my body; combined with Century, I stayed reasonably active in January.  I’m torn on what to do for February, I have the same goal, 3/week but I also have 4 five kilometer runs, one bicycle ride to work and home (uphill!!) and one Coquitlam Crunch (a milder Grouse Grind).  That’s 18 “fitness events” in a 28 day month.  I’m going to leave February that way although I do expect to miss hitting 100% success. February’s motto is “dig deep”, so we’ll see.  I will set my March goals based on an assessment of January and February.

Weight Goal

Weigh in at 179#: This goal was terminated in late January after personal assessment and support from Tara, Lana & my sister.  The scale is bullshit and I refuse to stand on it.  I am quasi-content with where my body is right now.  I would LOVE to be the size I was 6 years ago.  Is that possible?  Of course.  Is it probable?  Not in the slightest.  I was 29 then, I’m 35 now and shit has gone down in life.  I can’t simply discard all of that and force myself back into the past.  That 158# body was also created on a severe calorie restriction and a shit-tonne of cardio.  Since I am not willing to do that again, I have to respect where I am now and work with it.  There will be no scale or measurement goal in February, just a general statement that I should be working to reduce fat and build muscle.  I’ll know if I succeeded or not.

DecisionsMake Decisions Consciously:  this was a bullshit goal right off the start, those words don’t mean anything and there was no thought behind it save for the fact I though my goals list was too…er….selfish & materialistic.  LOL, so silly.

Feb All

So where do I go in February? A lot of January’s goals get to travel into February; some stay the same, some get some minor changes.  And then there are some brand new goals that surround fitness, personal care and home care.  Two that I’m really excited about are:

  • One “no TV” Friday night
  • No handheld technology after 6pm

Having these monthly road maps laid out has brought me a sense of direction and peace that I have never had before.  It’s a sense of really living my life as fully as possible and knowing what I expect of myself.  It’s actively watching and taking notice of patterns, both good and bad and capitalizing on that information in order to build a balanced and content life.

Welcome February, I’m ready for you!

Educational Weekend

I had the opportunity to learn some things over the weekend and I thought I would share them with you.  Some are profound and some are definitely not.


  • Everyone is not where you are.  I believe so strongly in the philosophy surrounding food that I adhere to and I wish that everyone could experience the positive changes that can come from it.  Unfortunately I sometimes can forget that 6 years ago when I was nearing 300lbs, if someone would have said to me that I had to do a Whole30 or even just give up grains I would’ve failed immediately.   It is definitely a skill that I need to work more on; approaching people where they are. 


  • Drinking a mug of hot water with lemon is a beautiful way to start the day and can give your liver a bit of a cleanse.  It’s also fresh, healthy and simple.


  • My hubby is caring and kind and loving and while I definitely knew all of that, I learned that if I actually just step out of the way a bit it gives him the room to demonstrate that in his own way.  That feels amazing!


  • I eat too much.  Yes, I learned that this weekend.  The majority of what I eat is healthy, whole, unprocessed food but I eat way too much of it.  I’ve stopped paying attention to my body’s full signal and just overridden it with an internal dialogue that tells me that since what I’m eating is healthy, I can (and should) have as much as I want.  That is decidedly untrue and while I won’t count calories or macronutrients, I am going to dial it back for the next couple weeks and see where I should be.


  • I know without a doubt where my passions are, what I’m interested in and what I’m willing to spend my time and money and effort on. 


  • Going back to my first point, there are so many “right ways” to be healthy.  While I personally choose one particular way and I believe in the science behind that way, there is no value in discounting what someone else might choose (caveat, I’m never going to agree to a grapefruit diet or the cookie and ice cream diet, I’m talking about legitimately healthy endeavours).


  • I am wrong a lot of the time.  There are aspects in my life where I’ve taken a hard line approach and will not entertain the notion of anything else.  The reality is, that reality is skewed.  And it changes.  Certain opinions I have, that I believe are based in fact, are in fact based only on my interpretation of the information.  And in some cases, complete misinterpretation!  There is an incredible amount of value in standing behind what you believe while also staying open to new info, new ideas and embracing the chance that you’re just plain wrong.


  • There is a lot that I know, about myself, nutrition, fitness, weight loss, vitamins and general health.  There is an unbelievably vast world of information that I haven’t even scratched the surface of.  


  • It is hard to get up in the morning and go somewhere and do something that does nothing to spark my passion and energy.  For that very reason it is important to cultivate that passion and energy every day, as often and for as long as possible to keep the spark alive!  We can get dragged down into the mire of daily life and forget that our daily jobs/chores/errands are just a means to an end. 


Happy sunny Monday!