Tag Archives: self-care

Changes – 12 steps

They say one should only make one or two changes at a time. In a deja vu moment, many changes are needed. Many of these ideas have been tried in the past. All those failures can be viewed as practice, right?

New and reinforced habits:

  1. Cardio 30 minutes a day
  2. 10,000 steps per day
  3. Stretch every day
  4. Strength exercise two to four times a week
  5. Take walking breaks during the day; maybe even leave the Shire – go to the gym or outside (per NP Dina Shah)
  6. Drink 10 glasses of water
  7. Eliminate diet soda (a “chemical-filled diuretic” per NP Dina Shah)
  8. Establish the Shire as a junk-food free zone
  9. No more Seamless (or limit it and change the type of food ordered)
  10. Healthy snacks
  11. Eat more vegetables
  12. Do meal planning (last because it may well be the most difficult)

That’s a start. More will probably follow.

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Spicy cauliflower & Dijon salmon

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I’m trying to do better at self-care. This means a deep reduction in the Seamless orders and some cooking on my own. It’s not my best thing, but I am getting there.

Traveling with Tricia for our 40th anniversary reminded me of how much I like cauliflower. I have always liked salmon. Now I am trying to figure out how to cook both of them.

This was my meal on March 23.

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So it begins. Again

I had hoped to include a photo, but I was not happy with any of the ones I took. I’ll try again.

Today marked the beginning of a new self-care effort. Eating well. Walking. Working out. Stretching. Drinking water. Probably more.

There’s a lot to do. And I hope to do it..

See you along the Trail.

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A goal I am thankful for

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Traci Smith, author of Faithful Families: Creating Sacred Moments at Home has provided a gift of the November 2018 Gratitude Every Day calendar. I am using it as an opportuity to revisit photos and post them as they speak to gratitude.

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Playlists

I walk. It’s one of the few healthy things I do. At the moment. I have plans to change that.

For now, I walk. Over 5,000,000 steps in 2017.

IMG_6750.jpgAfter some trial and error and more trials and even more errors, I discovered that what inspires me best when I walk, and in those moments when I jog or run at a speed that challenges a sundial to measure, is music. Which leads to the topic of playlists.

At first I tried using my iTunes on shuffle. The challenge involved tempo. Many songs on my iTunes are too slow for walking, let alone for those moments when jogging/running at a speed that threatens to leave banana slugs in the dust.

Playlists became my solution: selecting the songs that I want to listen to each day. I create daily playlists that are about 1 hour long.

Of playlist types, there are four (at the moment):

Memorial playlists. Often, but not every time, when an artist dies, I create a playlist of songs by that artist. Sometimes I will include covers of the artist’s songs as well. At times this means purchasing songs to build, or supplement, the playlist; other times I have the needed songs.

Special day playlists. For days that have speak to me in a special way, I create playlists. These are days I choose to commemorate. Usually I have songs that fit the day; occasionally songs are added to supplement what is already in my iTunes library. Examples are: Roberto Clemente’s birthday, my birthday and anniversary, Martin Luther King, Jr. Day,  Human Rights Day, the Winter Solstice, and Women’s Day.

Seasonal playlists. Current playlists mark two seasons. During Advent and Christmas, playlists are built of Advent and Christmas songs on the Sundays and then from December 24 through January 6, Christmas songs fill the playlists. The week or two before and after St. Patrick’s Day bring playlists of Irish and Irish-American music. Fitzgerald on my mother’s side. Playlists created during each season follow, as far as possible, the rules of regular playlists and involve the creation of Christmas and Irish source playlists.

Regular playlists. I create a playlist folder in iTunes with all the songs in the library except for Christmas. This becomes the master playlist with the incredibly creative name of “Gym.”  A playlist folder for each day is then created: “Gym 02 November” for example. I then go back into the master playlist, set it on shuffle, and start a song. I don’t use that song, but do a fast-forward to the next song. If the tempo is right, I add it to the daily playlist and then delete it from the master playlist and then repeat the process. If the tempo is too slow, it is simply deleted and the fast-forward takes place. This continues for about 7 or 8 songs which is somewhere between 20 and 30 minutes. At that point, I look at the playlist in terms of diversity of the artists. The remaining songs are chosen using the fast-forward shuffle to ensure that there is a measure of diversity (gender and race) in the list. Two additional rules: only one song per artist per playlist (which is waived if an artist was a member of multiple groups) and no repeats of the same song even by different artists. Songs that are not included because they do not fit the rules at the moment remain in the list. Only slow songs and used songs are deleted. Should it reach the point where all the songs have been used or deleted, then the “Gym” master playlist would be rebuilt.

One potential tweak lies ahead. I have purchased the 2018 Peace Calendar from the Syracuse Cultural Workers. In addition to being a source for special day playlists, it may well allow the addition of a song or two on appropriate days.

Creating playlists consumes time. It often happens late at night with a mindless movie on the television. And I have come to realize that this is a discipline that feeds me in some way I cannot describe. And that is good.

See you along the Trail.

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The color of the day is green

IMG_1708Friday Prince. Today Ireland.

Friday purple.Today green.

Today marks the 100th anniversary of the 1916 Rising of Irish men and women against the occupation and oppression of England. More civilians were killed during the rising than were combatants on both sides. Guerrilla warfare followed that resulted in England leaving Ireland. The agreement to end that war partitioned the country: 26 counties became the Irish Free State; 6 counties in the north remained part of the United Kingdom. Civil war ensued but did not change that configuration. The Troubles convulsed Northern Ireland; progress has been made toward peace, the journey is not complete.

In remembrance and prayer, green was today’s color.

Note April 24 also marks the day the Armenian genocide began in 2015.

See you along the Trail.

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Purple not flowers – exercise gear

IMG_1706 (1)I had fallen away from my exercise routine. After a stretch where I worked out daily, I probably logged five workouts in the last month. I put out an alert to my friends and support network. They responded. Some offered encouragement. Some shared expressions of concern. Some even used the “l” word. And some figuratively kicked my butt.

Joann Haejong Lee essentially said, “Get thee to the gymery and attend the Prince’s songs as thou moveth.”

Maybe her message was a tad more direct and a lot less faux Shakespeare. But I got her point.

And to the gym I went. And with a Prince playlist there seemed only one shirt and bandanna choice.

See you along the Trail (and hopefully in the gym).

 

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