Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Tundra Toughy!

I did it! I actually bundled up and went out there in very cold very windy snowy weather. I was able to walk 1.5 miles. The road was covered in snow, but it wasn't too deep and it wasn't too slippery. I wore my fleece, my parka, my balaclava, my running tights and my new running knit hat lined with fleece. I carried a cup of coffee and I was comfortable for the most part. The wind was whipping on parts of the circle.

The rest of the day I stayed inside, so that makes this walk a bit of an achievement. I was planning to go to the 6:30 PM Zumba, but the roads,wind,snow did not warrant a drive. I enjoyed the luxury of a vacation day without commitments outside of the house! Aaah.

Tomorrow is another day, and with the new year coming, I must say this publicy: There are push-ups in my future! I. must. weight. train.

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Gobble Trot Gobble Trot

I am proud to say that I walked 5 miles at 7:20 AM on Thanksgiving Day! I was up and in my kitchen by 5:30 and was good to go by 7:00! My habit of 'early to bed, and early to rise' is really paying off! It wasn't easy, but it was enjoyable, along the Erie Canal talking with a friend I don't get to see very often! My very first Turkey Trot, and my first event of any kind with 5 miles. I'm considering running a 'freezeroo' of 5 miles, but that sounds like too long for me. I wish it were only a 5K. The name sounds horrible, but my friend is considering doing it, so I'll think about it. It would mean missing Zumba. : ( But I'd be connecting with another friend and would get really good exercise that day... and... I might actually increase my intensity/mileage in order to prepare for this thing! Hmmm.

Anyhow, my Thanksgiving was the best ever! I learned how to make cranberry sauce. I made my best ever sausage stuffing. The giblet stock was simple, and made a fantastic gravy without any salt. I can't believe it! It honestly was fantastic & nobody missed the salt... even on the mashed potatoes. I was prepared with the shakers on the table, but alas, they were untouched!! Good for us!

I ate my first pomegranate this morning and it was phenomenal on top of my cereal. Thank you to Wegmans for the sample they gave me and for making it accessible in my 46th year of life! I rejoice in any "firsts" I enjoy at this point.

Going to snuggle up in my first electric-blanket heated bed of the season!

Wednesday, November 16, 2011


...and I don't mean with joy! I've skipped a couple mornings now and I'm not proud. I just ate a handful of chocolate chips, and a maple-syrup sweet potato and I don't feel much eagerness to get outside tomorrow. It's so dark and it has been such a grey day and tomorrow it's going to be significantly colder. But out I will go. I'll help the cause by laying out my clothes tonight and heading up early to read in bed (translation: fall asleep reading). Tomorrow I don't need to get to work extra early, so out I shall go. I will wear plenty of warm clothes so I feel cozy, at least to start. Maybe I'll look for a runner's skull cap warm hat to buy, one that's very reflective/bright!

I'll also drink more tomorrow. I will.

I'm feeling guilty for skipping a nice yoga class at work and for not doing any weight training these days... not good.

I will not over-eat, and I will enjoy the sky and the quiet and the solitude. Man, thinking positively sure changes my mood. I love the peace and quiet and the darkness. The chill in the air can be awesome too. If it's so cold, I'll include a coffee lap and enjoy the warmth of the coffee going down my core as the chill tries to nip my skin.

I found out a friend is an avid runner and I sure can tell by looking at her body and I suspect by noticing her sunny attitude and high energy. I'm sure it helps that she doesn't work outside of the house, but she runs.... fast and wins races! She weight trains regularly and she looks great!!! I won't say I'm jealous, but I wonder if I'll ever feel fit like she looks.

Up to bed and book I go.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

...And the Moon Sees Me

I've been getting such a kick out of early morning running recently. I actually am enjoying looking at the sky. For the first time in my life, I've figured out the moon phases, and orbits and find it fascinating. As I opened my eyes this morning in bed, the first thing I saw was the almost full moon shining right in my window. I got such a kick out that, because I haven't seen the moon in the morning for almost a month! Now I know why.

Probably you do too, but I am embarrassed to say I never took Earth Science. Our middle school had a a set 7th & 8th Grade science program. Then in HS, I took the honors track which was Bio, Chem, Physics, and a full year of College Bio, which I do love, by the way. Anyhow, the gaps in my knowledge are finally being filled. What a hoot to learn something new at age 46!

So... this morning at 5:30 I saw the moon. Then I got my coffee, read a chapter and checked again... and it was gone over the horizon already!! Who'dda thunk that there is a set moon-rise & moon-set time that has nothing to do with our day and night!?!

I did not run this morning as I opted for a day of rest for these muscles. My quads are tight and almost sore & I'm hoping they'll heal and feel back to normal by tomorrow. Plus, the trade off is that I could get to work early, which is always wonderful for a teacher, especially when you have 90 kids scheduled for a rehearsal with you at 8:00 in the morning! Yup!

A note about changing my blog name. While I like the alliteration of Rita's Ramblings, I don't choose to have the inbred humility or even put down any more. I've been known as Serious Rita for most of my life, so I thought I'd take the opportunity to publicly strive for "silly" which I do believe is a much healthier/happier way to be, at least sometimes! Plus, I've been circling my block six times most mornings and it seems a little silly, like a mouse on an exercise wheel.

Run on! ... and Smile at the Moon!

Sunday, November 6, 2011


Years ago, I thought Jazzercise was the cat's meow! But Zumba opens a new world of cool dancing to me. When I started I was mostly awkward and stumbly, but now I'm recognizing/anticipating patterns and actually getting better at 'shaking it'. It is a riot thinking of myself dancing like that, but now I'm starting to stop thinking about myself doing it and actually starting to just enjoy the music and the movement. Yay me! I am in control of my thoughts, and my emotions. I can do this!

Saturday, November 5, 2011

When I stop trying so much, I progress!

It's amazing. A few months ago, I started out walking again, because darn, I can do that! I walked for 3 miles (six laps), because darn, I can do that! I did not plan or make any goals. If I end up walking up to three miles sometimes for the rest of my life, than that will be OK. If I can get it up to 4-5 times a week, that would be better and if I can make it be brisk walking, for 45 minutes to an hour, then I'd be in the recommended exercise zone & it really could help me live longer and better!

Well, eventually I started the old, "Well I can run to that mailbox anyway" thing. Then I chose 5 mailboxes that made good stopping points on my circle. So I'd run to the first, walk to the next, and alternate. Each lap had the opposite lengths walking/running, so I could count my laps easier. On my hesitant mornings, I'd start with a Coffee Lap of walking with a cup of coffee, no pressure. Well, surprise surprise, I started really running on some mornings... notjust my shuffle run. I even chose to shuffle run my coffee lap in part and then I started leaving my coffee home on some days and just run/walk.

Well, blow me down, I started feeling like I could run past the chosen stopping driveways, so I created an optional "Driveway + One" deal. Lo and behold I'm up to "Driveway + three and then some" so that I'm actually headed to the NEXT driveway and just stop running one house ahead of time to catch my breath. I'm not on any schedule or self-pressure to increase the running & decrease the walking, but it actually is happening this time. I'm surprised because I have tried this in the past in various forms. Now I just run six laps stopping here and there, because I want to run.

When I skip a run, I start feeling eager to get out the next day. This is INCREDIBLE! I've read about it, but never really felt it... that is the internal urge to run. It feels so good, and honestly I am so surprised.

One of my resolutions is to get some exercise each day. So even a lap or a mile is better than none. I spent one morning bouncing on my trampoline while enjoying the morning news program. On Sundays I go to Zumba! That is a topic for another day.

I am grateful to have a body that doesn't feel pain when I run. I am newly interested in the starry sky. I've seen it my whole life and only now I'm developing a real curiousity about the moon's orbit, the constellations and planets that I see. Good thing my neighborhood has very little traffic because I'm often running with my eyes to the sky. I am proud of myself!!

My running has been revived and I am revitalized.

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Walking is my new thing!

I've tried to run. I've jogged and logged and shuffled and sprinted. I've read and read and scheduled and not-scheduled, and now I'm 7 years into this running thing, still waiting for it to kick in. Well, after my last gallant effort in 2010, where I ALMOST stuck with my New Year's Resolution for a whole year, it still isn't any less painful, or any more pleasant to run for more than a few driveway's worth. Oh well. I'm old enough to let it go and embrace what I do enjoy. Plus, there is this wonderful thing which is supposed to extend our lives and our mental acuity: Walking! Woo hoo! I've been doing that for a long time now, so it should be easy to turn it into a fitness activity.

At my last ob/gyn check up, my doctor spoke quietly and solemnly about how walking has been shown to help in the fight against dementia! OK, I'm in!! Eating my blueberries and walking! Check!

My approach to this walking thing? Well, just do it when I feel like it, and try for every day, mixing up the time, place and duration. I'm also not timing, not measuring distance, and certainly not logging! I'm just going with what feels good, knowing that longer is better. I'm seeking walking partners and finding them in my husband, my students, and hopefully my friends when the weather breaks! What really would help is to get another audio book onto my mp3 player. My stories have a way of grabbing me.

Oh yeah, my bike was fixed this winter and it feels like a totally new bike with a new computer now! My kids do love biking & I'm toying with planning a long canal trip with them this summer. One problem though: I have a hard time keeping up. Hey, I was always seeking speed too at their age & would've been thrilled to leave my mother in the dust... if my mother knew how to ride a bike. Really, she never did believe it or not! Well, I love it and plan to spin those wheels for many miles and years to come!

OK, Spring, bring it on!