Running Cut-back Week

Today is the first evening in a week that the house temperature has dropped below 26 celcius INSIDE. Not only that but it’s happened while I was still awake to witness it.  We have Earl to think for this.  We’re currently at 23c (and dropping?).

This realization got me thinking about what else hasn’t happened in a week. I have not been without back pain – in a week. It is really discouraging that every time I get past that 2-3 week hump in establishing a new fitness routine, it seems to happen yet again, a road block. Just as I am feeling successful and excited and beginning to note progress in my abilities, on slam the brakes!  The only good thing about the heat wave and the back pain coinciding is that I haven’t been out running in the 40 celcius humidex.

Today I thought my back pain was gone, but decided to wait before making the decision to head out for a run, within a couple of hours I could feel the strain and twinging once again, this time with far less intensity than earlier in the week. So I took another rest, choosing to make swimming a priority as soon as the girlies returned home from school. With the heat at its highest point of the week it was certainly a welcome option.

The lake was the busiest I’d seen it all summer, and here we are September, coming up on Labour Day – the lifeguards are no longer on duty.  As soon as my spouse arrived on his way home from work (and could supervise our lot) I headed for the open water, away from all the crazy kids who’d arrived directly off of the school bus.  I would have liked to make a second loop, but one of the girlies was having issues that needed to be headed off, so a medium intensity 400ish meter swim was the extent of today’s workout. Tomorrow may be a write-off, unless we have power and my back feels well enough for a treadmill run – I won’t be heading outside in Hurricane/Tropical Storm winds and rains, and I am pretty sure my back will not go for a bike ride, even indoors on the trainer.

Usually at about this time in the cycle I get completely discouraged and feel like I’m back to square one. Not this time. I was consistent and stuck with the plan well enough that I KNOW it will work. After discussing the frustration with my Osteopath he assured me that it’s just a part of starting back up, and that it’s a good sign that my back is feeling significantly better within a week. He did not discourage me from getting back out there, in fact I felt like I had done all the right things for once. So, as soon as I feel ready I’ll be back out there following the same plan, as it turns out my body gave me a forced cut-back week. Not such a bad thing, considering I hadn’t actually figured out that part of the plan yet. 😉

Six-Year-Old-Child’s Irrational fears? or Drama Queen?

I find myself pondering once again: What causes a child to have sudden, unexplainable, and seemingly irrational fears, that come and go and without warning.

My seven-year-old seems fearless in many ways. She’s so much more of a risk-taker than her older sister, but then surprises me: losing her mind with panic at a hornet buzzing around the patio table; freaking out as the bathtub-of-a-row-boat moves outside of some imagined safety-zone – while she sits (accompanied by an adult who can swim) in her life jacket & wetsuit fully capable of swimming 50 meters (without the use of either), whilst the boat is hardly 25 meters from the dock or the shore; or suddenly requesting the option of sleeping inside the house rather than the much anticipated tent (in which she slept last year without incident or fear)… I could go on and on at the number of recently cropped up fears, some of which we’ve managed to overcome, others leaving me at a loss.

I find the most challenging part being that I simply cannot empathize with her panic, that my first reaction is simply to be frustrated and off-putting. When I realize that this is not going to go away, I try to reason with her. I try to understand where it is coming from. Was there an incident I was not witness to? Did someone share some “enlightening” tale? What can we do to make it better? It rarely makes sense.

How many parents feel this overwhelming urge to just throw the child overboard (figuratively speaking, of course 😉 ) and let them experience what might happen? At what point are natural consequences and refusing to coddle effective strategies, and at what point might they make matters worse? I tend to err on the side of wishing not to make matters worse, but could that in itself be part of the problem? I am, however, by no means an overprotective mom. I let my children stand a little too close to the swings and be brushed by the sneakers of their companions.swinging by. I encourage attempts at independence that often require additional clean-up. I let my daughter cut the carrots to help prepare a meal, even though my head is saying “woa! that requires a very sharp knife!”

This weekend, my children were to sleep in the tent nearby to us (who were in the tent trailer), just down the hill behind Nanny & Grampy’s house. In addition to wanting some privacy, we didn’t want the extra work to set up and take down the additional beds in the trailer. We compromised. The tent got moved to within tripping distance of the trailer door. Then I suggested to my daughter that she’d miss out on one of the most fun parts of camping out with her sister – the shake awake and urgent whispering :did you hear?” This was all it took, and on night two there was nary a discussion.

Is she just a drama queen? Or is there something to these fears?

Yes, there is still a plan / AKA Writing challenge: throw a topic at me!

I have not entirely completed my current (any) life plan. I haven’t clarified my goals, nor written out my plans: short term, long term and individual to each goal. I believe I must make time to do this, then begin following the plan(s).

Today I decided that any physical activity of some level of intensity of up to 30 mins, everyday would become a part of my fitness plan. There will be some more specific goals and challenging activities, but EVERYday, I will spend up to 30 mins working out. For the time being, this involves swimming during my children’s lessons at the lake each morning. Last week I swam daily and the level of intensity was entirely inconsistent. I took Saturday and Sunday off. Today I decided for this week it will involve swimming across the lake and back (approximately 900 meters).

I want to start working towards each of my goals this way, one small activity weekly or daily depending upon the relevance. Photography: a photo a day, everyday. Photo must be taken in manual mode and be something I am willing to share online. For today I chose to start with reading about getting out of the auto settings (I never use the actual “AUTO”, but the predefined semi-auto are my comfort zone), so I know this involves getting to know my camera better – tomorrow’s task: read the rest of the camera manual.

When it comes to my career related goals, I will need to take more time to eek any semblance of a plan out.

Writing: post at least one blog entry everyday. The toughest part of writing for me is getting started: deciding what to write about. So I decided to start a little experiment. I posted a Tweet/Buzz and Facebook Status asking for topics. I am challenging myself to write about every topic, no matter how strange, boring irrelevant to me. They do not necessarily need to be posted everyday – I may have other ideas that compel me to write as well 😉 , but I will have a running list to refer to and challenge myself with. Unless I start getting more topics thrown at me than I can ever keep up with, then I will need to set some clearer limits and expectations. I have received three suggestions so far. Two I have an idea of where to go with, the third I haven’t looked at yet (I was told not to if I a still on vacation– but realize now, I’ll at least need to add it to my list).

So here’s to moving forward, starting with little baby steps.

***If you have a suggestion for my writing topic challenge please add it to the comments on my blog!

Swimming with the Jellyfish!?

From Scenic

As it turned out, I didn’t do a whole lot of swimming, baby jellyfish or no, these suckers sting. I waded around keeping my eyes peeled, braved a short dip, asked for photographic evidence (see below), then got out. I’m still learning what my camera can do, and how to work a lot of the settings, but am quite pleased with these two shots!

From Scenic


From Photblog