Sunday, December 27, 2009

126 and then some

I walked 2.2 miles this evening with my dog so I passed the 126 miles goal.  Now to decided whether or not to keep track of miles walked or just do it.....hmmmmm

Friday, December 25, 2009

.3 to Marco

I walked 3 times around the neighborhood today for a total of 6.6 miles.  Leaving only .3 to Marco.

Thursday, December 24, 2009

An established new healthy habit.

53.2 to Marco was the mileage last logged in this blog.  I've missed 3 days walking between December 12 and today.  I'm going to attempt to add up how much I've walked in that time by looking through facebook - whatever the number, I've been walking a lot and LOVING it!!  Last night I walked 7 miles (1.5 - chatted with a neighbor for 30 minutes) and then the stamina is improving.  My feet are also burning - definitely need to investigate buying new fabulous sneakers.  I tried on an obscenely expensive pair but may go for it - I've run a bit and skipped a bit but it burns the balls of my feet with the current shoes.

December 13 - 0 miles
December 14 - 0 miles
December 15 - 3.5 miles(Walk in the rain with the dog and lots of pictures)
December 16 - 4.4 miles(Texture walk - lots of pictures)
December 18 - 4.4 miles
December 19 - 11 miles (in segments 2.2+2.2+2.2+4.4)
December 20 - 4.4 miles
December 21 - 5 miles - part on the beach with my mother
December 22 - 0 miles
December 23 - 7 miles - sunset through dark, part with my dog, part with my dear friend M.
December 24 - 4.4 miles
Total  above  44.1 miles

Here are some of my photos from the walks

December 21 - on the beach -my mother:

Another day - large cactus

Starting the evening walk

Arriving home afternoon walk

The day of the "texture" walk

And a few from the walk in the rain

To think I would have missed such beauty in nature if I had not walked .  Every walk has become a visual celebration.

OMG only 9.1 to Marco -I'll probably walk again tonight at least 2.2. I am proud of myself, love the walking, feel fantastic and am most happy to learn that a new healthy habit can be created.

What are you doing today to celebrate your life?

7:26 p.m. back from another 2.2 mile walk - took pictures of Christmas Eve in our neighborhood

6.9 to Marco

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Just adding to the total

On Thursday I walked in the morning with a friend - she estimated we went approximately 3 miles (I thought/hoped more LOL).  It was fun.  We walked at a quick pace and it was hot and humid.

Last night I walked 4.4 with the dog.

Today I walked 3.5 with the dog.  While walking, 2 pitt bulls and one pitt mix off leash came up and aggressively   greeted my dog...definitely not a comfortable situation and next time I better carry something to be able to protect her from loose dogs.  I'm glad it happened during the day and the owners came out shortly thereafter.  I don't know what I would have done at night in that neighborhood.  I'll stick to my neighborhood at night from now on.

Here are a few pics from today.

and this is next one is just before we got home on our block:

53.2 to Marco

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

A New Challenge

Yesterday morning I invited a friend to join me at a Yin Yoga class.  I think she really enjoyed it.  The teacher is  peaceful and reminds her students to focus on the present and think about one's intention for that moment or day.  I've been thinking a lot about mindful eating - really being present with the food on my plate.  I admit to eating in front of the computer or while distracted and it does not serve me well.  I also thought a lot about how wonderful it was to be in that gym getting in touch with my body - learning to stretch and feel and find the smallest shift to make the pose comfortable enough.  The class felt like therapy - mind/body/spirit therapy.  When it was over, I stood up and felt as if I was floating - light - unencumbered.  I had let go of the internal chatter and was able to stay present; it was just the perfect way to start the day.

My dear friend Susan and I met up later at Whole Foods with our dogs.  We planned to walk but ended up sitting outside in the fresh air for a couple of hours and lots of people came up to us.  Susan has a gorgeous rescued standard poodle - a pet therapy dog who is just the sweetest, calmest and most gentle of dogs.  Susan and I met in the MSW program and spent our first internship together at a nursing home/rehabilitation facility.  She would bring Monique there and we witnessed transformational miracles when the patients saw and interacted with Monique.

Susan is also very spiritual and she brought some "angel" cards with her and asked if I wanted to ask the angels anything.  We had done this once before and frankly it was amazing how on point the answer was to my question the previous time so I said yes.  Well, the angel cards were on point again.  And this is the second time that Mother Theresa ("Activist") came up for me as my present angel.  I had asked if I would be able to make the shift to becoming a person who eats mindfully.  The cards reveal past, present and future.  Past card had to do with emotions - on point - emotional eating - or not dealing with emotions when eating and distracted.  The future card had to do with love (love myself, my body, those around me...).  Lastly I picked my mantra card - a mantra for the day - "Triumphant".  There are descriptions that come along with each card and more details and it was uncanny how apropos the entire process played out.  After the cards and booklet were put away, we took a little walk with the dogs, I skipped a bit (when's the last time you skipped?) and Susan left to go home and I took my dog to the dog park.

We were at the park for a little while and probably only walked a total of 1 mile yesterday but that was fine - I had also done the yoga class, and my intention with the 126 to Marco is to average 4 miles per day - not to be precise about it.  The dog and I were happy having had lots of fresh air so it was a great day.

This morning I im'ed my friend and asked if it was the king or the queen.  My friend and her husband share the same IM ID.  It was the king but he soon got the queen and lo and behold the queen accepted my suggestion to walk.  She had to be somewhere later in the morning so we just walked once around the neighborhood 2.2 miles.  I skipped for 1/2 block - have to get that heart rate up somehow.

When I got home, my dog was looking at me with those sad eyes that expressed "Mommy, you walked without me?".  I put food in her bowl and tried to get her to eat breakfast before we left but she wanted to leave the house.  I planned a route to go 4.2 miles, brought a backpack with 2 water bottles and a bowl for her, and off we went.

I snapped some pics on the iPhone - the first one was with a large white bird on the top of the roof here - but although you can't see the bird - you can see the sun was shining.

And I took some pictures of flowers and one of papaya growing:

Somewhere around the 2.5 mile marker - when we were about to do a second mile in the neighborhood across from ours, she pulled me to the shade and she plopped down on the grass of a stranger.  She was going to have no part of walking a second time around that neighborhood and back through ours.

We had taken a water/rest break before that.  The heat index was 90 degrees and she's a princess who doesn't like to walk in the heat. So we rested a while and then returned home slowly so she could rest a bit in between when we got to some more shade.  Our walk together was 3.2 miles.

8:36 p.m. - Just got back from another 2.2 miles with Brie.

64.1 to Marco

Monday, December 7, 2009

A Walk Around the Big Block

I love having a destination instead of simply walking in the neighborhood.  We have a little compounding pharmacy about 2.2 miles from our house and they even compound medicines for dogs so they allow dogs inside the store.  I put on a little backpack filled with 2 water bottles and a flat plastic container and took the dog and we started the walk.  This is what the sky looked like overhead at approximately 4:15 in the afternoon - loved the clouds:

Unfortunately on the main road outside of the development, there's no sidewalk, so the dog and I walked down the median until we got to another main road.  I need to teach her not to pull - she doesn't love walking close to me but she loves walking with me.  So we walked and walked and stopped and she had a drink.  They loved her in the store and the best part of all was there was a little girl in theere.  My dog has usually been skittish around children but not this time...I think she's becoming less afraid (maybe after all the road noise and traffic, the quiet, coolness and calm in the store helped).  The little girl put her hand out and Brie licked her's and the little girl's mommy's hand.

When we left the pharmacy, we took the longer route home.  Along the way we found a bird sanctuary area where the egrets were all in the trees at dusk - unfortunately the iPhone camera wasn't able to capture it.  It was amazing though - so many many birds in a little protected wetland.  They were in the trees to the right  and although I deleted the photo because the birds weren't visible, you can almost make out all the white ducks that were on the banks of the water on the left.

We didn't stay too long because it was a little creepy being on that road alone with the dog and we continued on.  I snapped a picture for a friend who loves flowers and I always think of her when walking.  Does anyone know what this is?

Shortly after I took the photo above, I saw two storks on the edge of the water but because it's not permitted to walk on the green of the golf course (especially with a dog) I wasn't able to take their picture.  I really wanted to.  This is taken from google images - but these are the storks we have here.

So we continued and took a long route around the golf course and I was able to discover how to avoid most of the very busy street to get home but still had to hold tight on the dog so she didn't go near the road (again no sidewalks).

So here's the sky above the same trees as the first picture  of this afternoon's walk when we were almost home - clear and welcoming.

It took a long time to walk only 5.1 miles, but it was great.

71.7 to Marco

Embracing the Storm on the Horizon

Yesterday, after challenging myself to go to the mall for an "elfster" gift followed by a trip to Whole Foods for a bunch of Go Raw products (yummo but $$), I decided to head to the beach for a walk.

The beach is 10 miles due east of my house and my parents live across the street from the Atlantic Ocean.  My mother decided she wanted to walk with me so I waited for her to find her sunglasses and the key to let us get into the gate that leads to the beach.  We started our walk by descending 16 flights of stairs at the condo.  We then walked across the street and through the gate and down some stairs towards the beach and upon arriving "Mom" decided she didn't want to walk on the beach because it looked like it was going to rain.  I was determined to get on that beach regardless of the weather (as long as there was no electrical activity in the clouds above).  So I bid her adieu and took off my shoes and socks, left them them under the bench and floated down the rest of the stairs and onto the cool, wet sand.

The wind was blustery.  The ocean was choppy.  There was palpable and strong energy in nature all around.   I took some pictures and video on the iPhone while tuned into some Debbie Friedman (pesach) music which made the whole walk very spiritual.  (You can listen to a few of the songs here:  The Journey , Mi Shebeirach,  Miriam's Song,  Lechi Lach ).  The sky looked different depending upon the direction I faced.

Walking north.

Walking south.

So I managed to walk a little over 2.5 miles total round trip but it was a little harder on the sand and in the water; and absolutely delicious and delightful with the wind roaring around me and keeping me cool, the music loud in my headphones, the birds taking off from the beach, the people in the water kite surfing etc. I trusted my instinct and knew that walking on the beach was the right thing to do even with the ominous clouds in the sky.  I was out there at least 1.5 hours.  I wanted to walk more but when it was apparent there were no other people on the beach and it was getting dark, I headed back.  This was the picture of when I turned around to head towards my parents' condo for the last 10 minutes of the walk.

Going north again.

My 82 year old mother was waiting on the steps for me -  worried about me being on the beach alone near dark..Thanks mom :).

I felt grateful to be alive, to have felt the sand between my toes, the ocean water on my feet and legs, the wind  blow on my skin, to watch the pelicans fly above and the sandpipers run across the beach.

Life was a celebration with a storm on the horizon and my feet in the sand.

76.8 to Marco

Saturday, December 5, 2009

Is 52 Too Old to Skip Down the Street? Absolutely Not!

What an amazing walk I just had.  It was starting to drizzle and having not walked the last two days I knew it was time to just get up and go.  I looked at my dog and told her that she had to know it may rain while we're out there - she seemed to not understand (because she hates to get wet) and let me slip the leash on and away we went.  It drizzled, then rained, then drizzled,

then the sun came out and there was a breeze. If we hadn't walked in the rain, I would never have gotten to see the gorgeous hibiscus above - more proof that overcoming the resistance adds to life.

We walked at least 1.5 hours if not longer ( no idea how far we went so I'll underestimate to add to the mileage) in total today.  Cindy Lauper was the music du jour on the iPhone.  We walked 1/2 the usual once around the neighborhood and then ventured out across the main road into another neighborhood and went around twice there.  When we came back into our neighborhood and when we were halfway home a great song came on the iPhone and I just started skipping - I felt as if I was floating and it was so much fun for the little while I managed to do it before my feet were burning and I realized a need for water.

So I came home and looked up skipping as a form of exercise. I can't seem to get comfortable running, but skipping is something I can do.  When's the last time you went outside and skipped down the street?  :-) 

I'll estimate 4.4 miles walked so far today.

79.3 to Marco
 4.4 10:00 p.m. - just came back from another 4.4 miles - lovely walking at night.
74 .9 to Marco

Friday, December 4, 2009

Watch Maggie Nesciur

This woman loves to walk and walk and walk.  What an inspiration.  This is a must see/watch/listen.  Maggie Nesciur I so admire you.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Short list re last 2 days

December 1 -

1 hour yin yoga class (10:30 a.m.)
Walked 5.5 miles (sunset and beyond)
Bought vitamins and antioxidants, and filled pill cases for 2 weeks to remember

Dec 2
1 hr power yoga in the morning - whew that was TOUGH.
Walked 3.5 miles in the early evening - had to push myself - was tired but did it anyway.  There was definite resistance that had to be overcome.  It was incredibly humid outside.  The dog never complains ;-).

83.7 to Marco

Monday, November 30, 2009

A light day with exercise - work got in the way - is that an excuse? Maybe.

12:00 noon Walked 2.2 miles with a dear neighbor friend (we're quite sure we were sisters in a past life).  I feel energized to sit down and do the editing of a document for work and am looking forward to taking a stretch break in a few hours.  Ended up running some errands rather than walking again.

This morning I had thoughts about how this is not unusual - to start with an exercise program and be gung ho and go all out....the challenge will come in the future when the energy to continue wanes and the positive changes in body start to feel a little uncomfortable and self-sabotage comes in...more on that later.  This time WILL be different.

Looking forward to yin yoga class tomorrow - something in addition to the  walking.

92.5 to Marco

Sunday, November 29, 2009

"Feeling Good"

Another gorgeous day in South Florida.  A friend from Colorado stopped by late in the day.  We caught up a bit and then just before she left we went for a brisk 2.2 walk.  As she pulled away in the car, I walked another 2.2 - so -  4.4 today.  Feeling absolutely GREAT about walking and learning how to pick up the pace.  Pretty cool - I walked a total of 31.3 miles in the last 6 days - definitely progress in overcoming exercise resistance this week.


"Feeling Good"

Birds flying high you know how I feel
Sun in the sky you know how I feel
Reeds driftin' on by you know how I feel

It's a new dawn
It's a new day
It's a new life
For me
And I'm feeling good

Fish in the sea you know how I feel
River running free you know how I feel
blossom in the trees you know how I feel

It's a new dawn
It's a new day
It's a new life
For me
And I'm feeling good

Dragonfly out in the sun you know what I mean, don't you
Butterflies all havin' fun you know what I mean
Sleep in peace when day is done
And this old world is a new world
And a bold world
For me

Stars when you shine you know how I feel
Scent of the pine you know how I feel
Oh freedom is mine
And I know how I feel

It's a new dawn
It's a new day
It's a new life
For me
And I'm feeling good

94.7 to Marco

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Walking on Sunshine

Wow what a glorious day here in south Florida.  It was cool, breezy, delightful.  In the morning I walked for 4.6 miles - much of it with a dear friend who lives in the neighborhood.  Mid afternoon I phoned my mother and asked if she wanted to walk so we walked along N. Ocean Blvd. for 2.5 miles.  And then this evening the dog stood by the door and essentially asked "aren't we going for our evening stroll?"  (Keep in mind the dog walked all but 2.2 miles earlier).  So, drum roll please - I walked 9.3 miles today.  WOOT.

The endorphins are definitely kicking in :-).  Enjoy the song.

Video - I'm Walking On Sunshine!!

I'm walking on sunshine , wooah
I'm walking on sunshine, woooah
I'm walking on sunshine, woooah
and don't it feel good!!

Hey , alright now
and dont it feel good!!
hey yeh

99.1 to Marco

Friday, November 27, 2009

Dickens to Thoreau

The sum of the whole is this: walk and be happy; walk and be healthy. The best way to lengthen out our days is to walk steadily and with a purpose. Charles Dickens

It feels so good to sit down after the 4.4 walk this evening.  I'm wondering if I would be more productive during the day after walking in the morning rather than at night.    I'll find out tomorrow.

"An early morning walk is a blessing for the whole day." Henry David Thoreau

108.4 to Marco 

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Happy Thanksgiving

“It is not good enough for things to be planned - they still have to be done; for the intention to become a reality, energy has to be launched into operation.” Walt Kelly

Last year at this time, I likely would have come home from Thanksgiving dinner and curled up on the couch and watched television or gotten into bed feeling stuffed and tired. Tonight I walked my dog in the clear and cool breeze for 4.4 miles after having mindfully eaten a delicious dinner with family.

Life is good. I am grateful.

112.8 miles to Marco.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

What would my excuses have been today?

It was pouring this morning and I woke with a headache.  In fact, as I sit here and look outside, although the rain stopped, the headache endures.  I could say "uuuuuuuuhhhhhhhh I don't feel like walking - it's cloudy, damp, no energy, so much to do - need to make the shopping list for the grocery store, need to fold laundry, need to start cooking, yada yada yada. Change isn't easy, in fact - I wrote most of this blog post over an hour ago with the plan to go out then. All the familiar reasons of days gone by.

But that was the old me, the one from the day before yesterday and many days and years before that,  a queen of excuses not to exercise. That person cannot exist today. Inspiration comes from Yossi Ghinsberg who succinctly talks about  The Now is Here ( click "next" at the link to get to page 2 in order to hear what he has to say).

I'm going to get up from this chair now and challenge myself to don a  t-shirt, comfy slacks and Saucony sneakers, go outside - in the humid sticky Boca Raton weather, and take the 4.4 mile walk.  I am moving.  When I return it'll be 117.2 to Marco.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

126 to Marco

Welcome to n=1, Overcoming Exercise Resistance; my newest blog.

For years I've thought about the phrase "exercise resistance" (in my mind a play on the words insulin resistance) and often pondered what the tipping point is to clear the hurdle of resisting exercise. Specifically, how do individuals who once struggled to "find time", or made incalculable excuses, switch to not only embracing exercise, but implementing it into a life-long commitment to oneself. I am human and determined to move (physically and mentally) from pondering to action.

This endeavor will be a very small pilot research study (n=1) and will explore thoughts that emerge with resisting exercise and, more importantly, the motivation to move past those thoughts and commit to a more healthful way of living. One day, one step, one thought, one a time.

"126 to Marco" explained: I live 126 miles from Marco Island Florida (according to Google maps). The magnificent Family Support Weekend for families with Children with Diabetes will convene on December 31, 2009. I will see dear friends and make new ones there, and plan to walk the beautiful beach effortlessly with others. So, I have decided to walk 126 miles, on average 4 miles per day at a time, in and around my neighborhood between now and December 31, 2009.

I "missed" the weekly YinYoga class today - excuse: too busy online with Twitter (follow me @CureT1Diabetes), Facebook, creating this blog, various email accounts etc. and I didn't prepare well - you may know the drill. However, I'm going to log off now and walk my dog for 4 miles. And so begins the journey of one.

Thanks for reading and please share what motivates you to exercise consistently.

(p.s. If you know of a tool I can use to log my steps and post exercise on the blog, please let me know. )

(p.p.s. Comment 13 here in the NYTimes on November 18, 2009: In a study of overcoming exercise resistance (n=1) ;-) I’ve discovered that when walking, there’s a surge of joy that occurs just about at the 2 mile marker which produces a boost of energy to walk at least another 2 miles or more depending upon the weather.
— Ellen H. Ullman, MSW
Day 1 -Walked 4.4 miles with the dog and even jogged a tiny bit. 121.6 to Marco