Feeling a bit nostalgic… Putting up “the fancy stuff” until our next family feast. It’s always a little extra work and this year, we were so limpy, gimpy and wimpy after our morning run that I nearly scratched the idea and went with paper plates – but I’m glad I didn’t.
We remained true to tradition, like my mother and grandmothers and great grandmothers before me; we used the fine china, we set a pretty table, we poured good wine, we ate a little too much and we laughed until we cried. We missed the family who couldn’t make it and we remembered the loved ones who left us too soon.
I’m the oldest of four and THIS is my “why” – family, love and traditions that continue to hold all of us together, so that even long after we are gone, we remain together in spirit.
I am not an exercise enthusiast but as a nurse, I do have a special appreciation of the body and I deeply respect life.
I’ve worked in a hospital for over twenty years now and the majority of those years, I’ve been an emergency room nurse. I’ve watched the human spirit fight for life as the body runs out of energy to hold on. I’ve seen up close and personal the habits that rob life of it’s quality. I’ve seen illness steal the light from a life well lived.
There are many events we have no control over but as much as I despise scheduled exercise, oh how I love skiing and hiking and being outside! I enjoy being able to bend down to tie my own shoes. I appreciate being able to climb up on the counters to water my own plants. It brings me joy to be able to physically participate in a child’s life and run on the playground, swing on the swings and zip down the slide without having to stop to catch my breath. This is the good stuff.
So I exercise.
I put on my Nikes and I fire up ol’ Mo, my aptly named treadmill, and I curse and I cry and I get it done. I quit at least 30 times an hour, but then I remember my “why” and I get my head back in the game and I keep going. I play mental games with myself. I do whatever it takes to get the job done.
I need to be able to perform solid chest compressions for at least 2 minutes straight without getting tired. (It sounds easier than it is.) I need to be able to downhill ski for 8 hours straight, keep up with my pre-teen mountain master nephews and still have the energy to make the hour drive home – and then do it again the next day. I need to be able to climb a haystack, lift a bale of hay, load it into a pick-up truck and then lift it again into a hay feeder. And sometimes, I need to be fast enough to make it to the gate before the bull. Well, that last one hasn’t happened yet, but if it ever does, I need to be ready!
So I keep exercising, even though I despise it.
I challenged my 9 year old nephew to a 5K Turkey Trot Thanksgiving morning. He’s an athlete. We’ve walked a couple races in the past but he’s been chomping at the bit to run one for time. He’s too little to run a 5K alone, so I’ve been training and training HARD to be able to drop the reins and let the little guy give it all he’s got but still be able to keep up with him.
I’ve been using the Couch Potato to 5K app to coach me along. I’ve crossed the threshold from mostly walker to mostly runner as of late and I’m actually beginning to feel excited about the upcoming race – though, I have to confess, I’m even MORE excited that our mountain just announced an early lift opening the day after the race and that is my real reason for cardio conditioning – ski season.
I’m not fast, it’s not pretty and I’m not a natural – but I get it done because I believe the body is a tool and I have to keep it conditioned to perform the activities that I enjoy. It’s really that simple.
So wish me luck. The little guy has vowed, in playful jest, to “totally smoke me and leave me in the dust” next Thursday. Personally, I think I just might surprise him.
These are iTune links to two of the apps I’ve used. I like to mix things up so I’m always guessing what the next day will bring. I believe they both offer Android versions as well and no – nobody is paying me to mention their product.
The pumpkin experiment was a success. I was able to avoid trips to the local pumpkin patches this year AND we grew some impressive gourds – but what to do with the leftovers? The chickens can only eat so much pumpkin…
My husband and I were mulling over the possibilities when out eyes met, our smiles broadened and we both said one word, “Tannerite!”
There aren’t a lot of places in the world that you will hear a conversation like this take place:
RN 1: “I was a little worried last week that the lightning strike may have done more to my heart than I thought. Every time my heart rate hit 160 on the treadmill, I’d start to get that CHF wheeze.”
RN 2: “What? Your heart rate shouldn’t be 160!”
RN 1: “Well, it’s like 158.. But only when I push myself running. Max heart rate is 200 minus your age, I’m fine. The wheezing went away when I slowed down. I was a little worried BUT the good news is that it’s gone this week!”
RN 2: “It shouldn’t be 158! That’s crazy!”
RN 3: “I told you that my camel died 3 days after it got struck by lightning, right?”
Yep. An actual conversation that occurred in the Emergency Room break room, November 2017, in Redmond, Oregon.