Monday, January 24, 2011

True Story

Tonight I am thinking about Dave. The last time we really interacted was probably in the fifth grade. We had a fifth-grade camping trip to Twin Bears and all three of our classes got to go do activities, hike what seemed like a death march, sing around campfires, make midnight trips to the outhouses and other general merry-making. We got to ponder such questions as, "Would I drink out of a mud puddle if I was thirsty enough?" There was the girl who had "thrown up twice, and if I can just force myself to do it a third time, they'll let me go home!" And all the people that, at night, got a lot friendlier and wanted to snuggle because it really was cold.

And then there was Dave. He was kind of a tough guy. But I had seen his softer side before. First when he wrote me my very first love note. It said, "I like you." And it was unsigned. But I saw him watching me as I found it and being eight and not six or something, I soon figured out it was from him when I saw the matching torn paper sticking out of his desk. He finally admitted it and I was extremely flattered though I was already crushing on the guy who had given me a quarter, and in those days, that was enough for half an ice cream sandwich. I had also seen him cry before. He got hurt and recess and I'll never forget how he looked when he cried. At my tender years I thought it was one of the most terrible things I'd ever seen.

Then at camp, something triggered him so deeply he almost had to go home. My dad was one of the teachers on the trip, and during one of the group singing sessions, decided to play John Denver's "I'm Leaving, on a Jet Plane"... don't know when I'll be back again, oh babe, I hate to go...

Dave and one of his best friends started sobbing uncontrollably. They couldn't stop the flow. They knew it was uncool and they couldn't stop it. They got so upset, Dad took them for a ride to calm them down. They came back, but according to rumor, they had to be convinced to stay. I'm still not sure exactly what happened but I think it was their awakening. It was when they really realized that sometimes partings happen, sometimes you're not home. Sometimes, your heart aches so badly you can barely breathe.

Dave died a few years ago. He was in a motorcycle accident. I didn't go to the service. For some reason I couldn't. I worked in the same building as his mother for several years and you could always see him in her eyes. I don't think she'll ever let him go. I wouldn't.

Monday, January 17, 2011

Strange Behavior

This morning is a little on the chilly side, a mild -31* F.... nothing we can't grit our teeth and bear. Just a chance to remind ourselves that the economy is really good here in comparison to some other places in the US and we have a lot to be thankful for.

On this cold morning I went to the gym where I struggled to catch up with my dear husband who is two miles ahead at this point. As I got out of the car to come up my walk and back home, some strange behavior caught my eye. A man was running, from the front of a house to the side of it; he looked like a burglar sneaking around. Then I realized the poor guy is just trying to get to his car faster because it is so freaking cold!!!

I also happened to catch a glance of my reflection in a window and... let's just say maybe I should have utilized a mirror before leaving the gym. Due to the cold, I put a hoodie on under my peacoat to keep my sweaty hair from freezing, and unintentionally popped the collar on my peacoat, so I looked like I was trying to make a fashion statement of some kind, which was not the case.

Cold weather makes people do strange things. Deep, isn't it? Time for caffeine, bye-bye.

Thursday, January 13, 2011

The 500 Mile Challenge

We've started a new competition, this one is Jason's brainchild and so far I love it! Many of you have already heard about it but it's becoming quite encompassing so I wanted to blog about it as well. The 500 mile challenge is a competition between Jason and I, and we decided that whoever gets there first, either by arc, treadmill, elliptical, laps with a pedometer, or swimming... wins five hundred dollars to spend however the winner wants! I honestly can't think of any cons for this competition. Regardless of who wins, we will both be a lot more fit at the end of this then we are now. The motivation is there and in your face since we're constantly trying to keep up with the other person. And one of my favorite features is that it isn't about weight loss, it's about getting in shape and traveling the distance. We are very fortunate to live about two blocks from the gym so it really could not be easier.

Mentally this has been a really fun challenge as well. Yeah our gym is a "judgment free zone" but there's always someone who's in better shape than you. My technique for blocking this out and continuing to feel good and like I'm conquering something is to go somewhere else in my head, preferably with music. Right now I'm in a little bit of a hip-hop phase at the gym and let me tell you, if you keep up to the beat, you will go a lot faster than maybe you were planning to go. Here's my current play list, designed to not only make me feel like more of a bada** than a short girl, but also makes me feel high on life:

Hey Ya! - OutKast
Lose Yourself - Eminem
Not Afraid - Eminem
In the End - Linkin Park
Pump It - The Black Eyed Peas
Say Hey (I Love You) - Michael Franti & Spearhead

After about three or four times through this list, you'd better not look at me funny on my way out of the gym or I will take my inflated sense of strength and kick you with my little feet. Gersh I'm having fun with it!

I think watching Biggest Loser has had an influence as well. When I feel tired or like I want to slow down, I just say to myself, "Do you want this? DO YOU WANT THIS? Do you want to win!????" sort of like Jillian Michaels says to the contestants... it's highly motivating. And YES I want to win, of course. I've already spent the money in my head, the problem is, so has Jason. So the beat goes on, da da dum da dum da da da da....

Then there's Chariots of Fire, I love the music, always have, and rent the movie from time to time just to get inspired to work out... I think my favorite quote is from the main character Eric Liddell, "I believe God made me for a purpose, but he also made me fast. And when I run I feel His pleasure."

Using the strength we have is a good thing. I'm so excited to find something that's helping me make exercise a real habit in my life. I'll keep you posted.. buy your TEAM SHEILA t-shirts TODAY!!!! j/k ... sorry honey I'll try not to be a d-bag. But you know I love a good competition!