Tuesday, October 16, 2018

What shall I do with my shiny, stress-free life?

Dear Diary,

This week marked the end of six years of tyrrany. 

A person in my life, who shall remain nameless, left town, never to return, and I now have what feels like a whole new job.  Instead of 100% case management, I'm now doing 50% case management and 50% group therapy.  And, I'm doing it without constant micromanaging and what I assume is the tacit understanding that with three master's degrees in my field, I might be a fucking professional.  I'm still working on the organizational aspect of it - until I've done a month's worth of groups I need to write a month's worth of groups for younger children AND for teens both, but luckily, they are short-term groups for the inpatient setting where I work.

And if you thought I was tough before: this week I did a mindfulness group with about eight children under the age of 13.  Some of them were still, and, well, mindful.  Many of them wiggled and a couple folded themselves up inside their yoga mats and looked like little wontons.  Then we colored.  It was great.

I just finished my 5th Barre class tonight and I am starting to feel the difference.  I have never cared much for "the burn" but I force myself to give it just five more seconds...before collapsing into a quivering heap.  I notice that I am holding poses a bit longer.  I feel a bit less hopeless.  I feel a bit more stronger.   I can turn my head and look over my left shoulder. 

Thursday nights I'm taking a basic painting class.  I told the teacher I had painted before, and in fact I sold 3 paintings last year and 2 pen-and-ink drawings this year, but the truth is that 2 of the paintings and one of the pen drawings were done under supervision, and I really want to be able to learn from the very basics what to do.  So far we studied color theory.  I have really wanted to take a college-level painting class, but unless I can get every Friday off, that's not going to happen.

After a pretty warm fall the temperature suddenly plummeted and there were 20 mph winds.  Since I'm not acclimated I run on the treadmill in the garage, still working through the couch-to-5k program to get my out of walking/hiking mode and more into running mode.

That's it for this week so far.  Just checking in.


Sunday, October 14, 2018

Who turned off the heat?

Dear Diary,

Dedicated to my mom, who died way too young at 61 of heart
failure from idiopathic cardiomyopathy.  

It seems like just 2 weeks ago I was commiserating with Sweet Baboo of how this seemed like an unusually long summer and warm fall.  Then this week someone turned the heat off.  This is awesome, because I'm much more likely to get out of the house when it's cool out.

Last weekend I completed the 50k at Hennepin--Sweet Baboo ran the 100 miles in 22 hours and HEY, WE WERE TALKING ABOUT ME.  PAY ATTENTION TO ME.  (but seriously, he's like from Krypton and shit).  The Hennepin 50k started at 5 pm and the sun set 90 minutes later.  That left 7.5 hours for me to run through the dark and rain.

Of course, my Garmin does not last until I finish a 50k, so I have to switch to my Apple Watch after about 6 hours.  So this is the result:

Illinois is the 46th state I which I've completed a marathon or longer.

It was chilly, but luckily most of the rain held off until 11:30 at night.  I managed to do a run-walk the first 16 miles or so, and then after that I had to Walk.  I'm just not in the best shape right now, although I do have pretty sturdy feet and legs.  They carry me, just not quickly.

It was also disappointingly not a real "trail".  Most of it was blacktop.  I'm definitely losing 2 toenails.  Himself, the Baboo, is still recovering from what to me would be a sprint for 22 hours.

I took several pictures at the start line, and then two others after I started as the light started to dim.

The week prior to my run, a coworker talked me into taking a Barre class, which I tried, and liked well enough.  It's a combination of ballet conditioning, pilates, and yoga, and it's tough. I like that I can reserve a spot in a class, and that the classes are capped.

It also makes me feel like a bit of a cliche, a woman of a certain age packing my sticky socks, capris, and tank top into the back of my white SUV and heading there after work...  It is a LOT tougher than I imagined, and I discovered after my first barre class that 1) I have no upper body strength, 2) Even my lower body isn't what I would call "strong", and 3) my core--well, fuggetaboutit.  I went to class once before the run, and twice during the week.

The good news is that owing to my constant wearing of high heels going up on my toes ain't no big thang.  I have good balance, too.

I discovered after I put this in manually that my Apple Watch has a "yoga" setting, which I'll use for future workouts.  I burn a whopping 200 or so calories in an hour, according to Garmin and Apple.

For the record, I am, without a doubt,
the largest person

in every barre class I've been in so far.  It doesn't help that like many exercise classes, there is a large wall-sized mirror so I get to look at myself trying to work out at my heaviest weight since 2005

This morning, my class was full of 19-year-old sorority sisters trying out the class.  Literally.  Happily, most of them were struggling.  Sorry, but yes, I am that petty.  If I have to look at your size 0 ass bent over in front of me in exercise class, you had better be suffering.

I spent the week in recovery going to barre class and started my new painting class, as well.  More on that another time.

At work we've had a series of webinars on the Mediterranean diet and I've discovered that for the first half of the day, I'm basically on it.  Then it all falls apart as they start bringing in sheet cake, donuts--holy shit, hospitals are the unhealthiest places to work EVAR.

I discovered in the webinar about the existence of these:


Tomorrow, I go back to running my 2-3 miles every morning, hopefully working my way up to 4-5 miles on most days.  My plan for Barre class it to do it for at least a month to help get my arms and core back into shape.

I canceled the marathon double I was supposed to do next weekend in MD/NJ.  No way am I ready for this.  I did, however, sign up for the Black Canyon 50K.  Actually it's like a 55k or a 60k. Aravaipa Running does put on a good race--I have to admit that as much as I hate Southern AZ.  This will be my 3rd attempt at what should be an easily finished run for me.  The first year, there was a series of freak rainstorms.  The second year, 2018, I started seeing double.  By the time I was checked out and rehydrated, I'd missed the cutoff for leaving the aid station.  so 2019 is it.

I have 4 states left.  I hope to get them in 2019.

Meanwhile, at work, things are settling down nicely and the pain in my neck and shoulder has dissipated with the exit of my toxic coworkers.  I can turn my head and everything.  Next step is to reverse 6 years or so of stress eating hospital food.



 I'm no longer involved in multisport or endurance sports. I've started my own business, a psychotherapist specializing in anxiety d...