I promised myself that I would make time to write and even though it is getting pretty late tonight, I intend to keep my word to myself. It may not be a long post, but it’s going to be from the heart.
It’s been two days since the camping weekend came to a close. Now that we are back home, we had to catch up on lots of things. The lawn needed to be cut, the animals needed extra attention, and all the house work was backed up as well. So needless to say, it has been busy around here. But I am happy to say that things are looking good now, except the weather. It has been a gloomy day today, with rain on and off, misty and then downpour. The dogs had to spend the day inside, which I assume is boring for them because there is nothing to bark at except the cat.
The temperature has been very nice and cool, which is great because our A/C is being stupid right now. We’ve enjoyed having the breeze come through the open windows and the sound of the rain makes it even better. It’s a great atmosphere to write. I would love to set up my writing desk in front of the window, but the room is not the correct configuration for that to happen. Besides, once the A/C is fixed and summer hits, the windows will be closed and the sounds will be gone. Then I’ll have to rely on Spotify for my audible motivation and inspiration.
Unlike while camping last weekend, I am now using all my fingers on the keys, making it much easier to type a post. I know I will be able to take my laptop with me on the next camping adventure, and even though I won’t be able to publish while in the woods, I can type my heart away at speeds thumb typing on the phone can’t match. So my next promise to myself will be to get my thoughts into a draft before packing up to come home from a trip. Get my thoughts out while I am still in the atmosphere that inspires the thoughts in the first place. That would make the most sense I would imagine. The farther away from nature I get, the more detail I will lose in the creative process. So while I sit here in bed, feeling the cool breeze from the open window, listening to the crickets and birds from that same window, I remind myself of a few things. When I find myself lacking inspiration or the mood to put words to paper, all I need to do is simply open a window. Nature is my inspiration and whether it’s coming from outside my bedroom window or through the canvas and zippers of my pop up camper, it will enable me to keep my promise to myself and just keep writing.
“So far so good.” I say to myself when I think about how the year is going thus far. It’s true that it’s only been a week, but I feel that I am sticking to my guns very well. Like I said in my last post, these are not resolutions for the new year, but rather ongoing changes in my life that I want to continue to improve upon. I am merely using the new year as a starting line to amplify my efforts and focus into making these changes stick this time. It’s true that some of my personal goals are for me only and will remain that way, but there are a few I can share. Like most people probably agree, being in better shape is preferable than not, so I’m not going to sit here and tell you that I discovered something totally new that will change the world and make this journey successful for me. What I do know is that last year when I exercised and rode my bike a lot more, I was in better shape. So one could conclude that if I did that again, I could better myself back to that person I was. The problem is that all that stuff takes up so much time. I have different priorities this year. I don’t want to be gone every Saturday for 6 hours riding a century. Sure, once in awhile is fine, but some Saturdays I want to hike, or camp, watch movies or play guitar. I want to do so many things that there is no time to dedicate to one thing to hard and I prefer it that way. So there is my dilemma. I must juggle all the things I want to do, and at the same time, enjoy the benefits of each activity to the fullest.
I’ve heard that it takes just a few weeks to form a habit, so that is what I am trying to do. So far, I am doing a great job of eating better, both in what I am eating, and also in quantity control. I am starting to decrease my carb intake, while increasing my vegetables and lean proteins. I am also cutting way down on coffee and soda, which in turn drops my sugar intake in parallel. These changes, combined with gym workouts and running are making a difference. I don’t feel like I have to kill it at the gym to make progress as long as i am consistent and don’t kill it at the buffet. Smart food in small proportions coupled with smart exercise seems to be better than eating what I want coupled with killing it at the gym to compensate for the bad choices I made earlier. It takes so much less energy, the results are better and healthier, and I have more time for myself and my family to do more of the things I want to do and learn.
I want to use this surplus of energy and time to form better habits in other areas of my life as well. I want to become more musical, and that doesn’t mean I put on my headphones and try to listen to every song every made. What I want is to learn, re-produce, and and then create my own. Ukulele and guitar are my new passions. Once I learn to play a bit, I want to learn to play some existing songs that others can recognize. Then eventually I would like to create my own songs. I’m not interested in becoming famous for it, but I think it is magical when someone can pick up a guitar and just play, and even better when they can just start putting words to it on the fly. During this process, I also will need to learn to sing. My wife says I have the low range covered, but the mid range and definitely the high registers need some work. Being in better health and fitness will help that as well since I need more air in my lungs to be able to sing better. Anyways, creating lyrics is a hope. Right now, I guess you could say that I can write a little poetry, so putting it to music is the natural next step.
This year is going great so far. There is a world of new possibilities in front of me and my new habits are going to help me explore and enjoy many more of them. Even the company my wife and I work for just merged with another company, creating a new name, a new brand, and a world of new possibilities and opportunities to explore. Life is good and 2015 is going to be the best year yet, and I am going to make sure of it. I don’t care if it’s 7 degrees outside….. LOL. 🙂
Until next time, take care of yourself and the ones you love.
Today’s weather is not perfect, but it’s good enough to get out on the bike. The temp is climbing toward 60 degrees now and the clouds are holding in the warmer air. More importantly, it’s less windy than it was on Tuesday, which should make for a nice ride.
Today is Day 5 of my Triathlon Training and I shall do many things today in the interest of fitness. A casually paced 17-18 mile bike ride here in a few hours at lunchtime will start off the festivities. Tonight, I will stomp out a 5K on the treadmill at the YMCA, followed by an hour of yoga. I normally would do spin class tonight, but I think since I am going to ride at lunch, my spin instructor will understand. On Tuesday, I did to both, cycling outdoors and spin class at night and boy were my legs tired. The yoga on Tuesday did help stretch out the quads though, and they were very thankful. Monday and Wednesday nights, I try to get to the pool after running a 5K or doing the elliptical for 3 or 4 miles. This week, I swam 600 yards both nights, followed by an hour Deep Water Fitness Class. All in all, I feel that I am getting a full body workout with all the variations of exercise I am subjecting myself to on a daily basis.
Other than the motivation of familiar faces at the gym, and cycling buddies on the road, I really enjoy reading the blogs of other athletes. I know this process just started for me, as it has for many of you also, but just to read about the challenges and success stories of you all really helps me be able to see where I am going and to know that it is worth it. At times, I feel that I will never be able to run a 5K consistently or increase my speed, or that I will not be able to routinely swim laps without stopping for breaks, or ride faster on the bike without burning myself out. But then I see how others overcame these things and I know that I can overcome them too. That’s what keeps me going, so I want to thank all of you who read my blog, comment on my posts and workout summaries here and other social media venues, and give me advice to move forward. I also want to thank all of you, who share your stories with me, so I can see what is possible.
While I was in the pool last night doing laps, I stopped to take a breather, and a young man commented on my swimming stroke, saying that I was a great swimmer. I thanked him graciously and he continued to tell me that he just learned to swim and was on a program to be able to swim a mile continuously in 6 weeks time. I told him he looked pretty good for just started out. He’s in the same boat as me right now, where I can swim like a fish, but only for a lap or two at a time, and then I am out of gas and have to rest. I told him that I was going to look up that training program he spoke of and make try it myself. As it turns out, my triathlon training sort of includes the same swimming training as his program, with one less day a week of swimming. His program has 3 days of swimming per week, where mine only has two. I know he was not an expert swim coach or anything, but just him saying that I was a great swimmer motivated me to swim farther, with a little more speed, and with better technique ( I hope).
Can one of you come with me while I run and tell me that I am doing great? That is where I need the most help in my opinion. LOL. 🙂
Thanks for reading.
More updates and insights to come. Time to bike.