40 Weeks to 40: Dreaming of the Olympics in Rio

My husband and me at Olympic Stadium.  We were seated in the second row the morning of August 4th, around the 55m mark.  Amazing seats.

My dream since 2012 has been to go to the Olympics in Rio to watch my husband’s cousin – and her husband – compete. I even downloaded Rosetta Stone Portuguese to prepare for our Brazilian journey.

Little did I imagine that our financial position would be as ugly as it currently is following the purchase of my dental practice. Dentists are supposed to make lots of money, right?

Okay, so things didn’t go as planned with my business. It is what is it and I am choosing to take steps to change the practice into what I want it to be. I can live with that. Unfortunately, it may disrupt my dream of visiting Olympic Stadium in Rio and that makes me sad. *sigh*

Right now, we’re saving our Avion points and my husband and I are both working hard to build our businesses and seriously improve our cash flow and debt situation so that we can make Rio happen.

In the meantime and as an active affirmation that I will get to watch the Olympics live, I’m going to tackle learning Portuguese as part of my 40 Weeks to 40 series. My goal is to spend 40 minutes x 40 days on Rosetta Stone by the time I turn 40. That way, I can at least ask someone where the bathroom is when I’m in Brazil. Asking where the facilities are has got to be the most important thing to learn in any language, don’t you think?

The End of My 39th Year

I turn 39 this month, which means that I’m heading into my 40th year. I have that voice in my head telling me that I haven’t accomplished enough, that I should be farther ahead than I am, but I am deliberately not listening to it. I’m not saying that there aren’t things that I want to accomplish in my 40th year of life and beyond, but I am where I am, and that’s okay.

I’m sure I seem to have life sorted, but I don’t. My husband and I are both building businesses, which means that we’ve pretty much used up all of our available credit. We haven’t been doing a good job of budgeting (working on it) and I’ve been avoiding taking a hard look at the numbers in my business (working on that, too). I recently asked my mom for a loan for my business because the bank wasn’t a great option (we have assets but not steady incomes, so they weren’t going to be eager to loan us money), and while I am still dealing with the shame and embarrassment of having to borrow money from my mom at my age, I am dealing with it.

On the other hand, I have a whole lot to be grateful for:

  • my kids, who are mostly sweet and loving and funny (though sometimes I want to strangle them)
  • I have a home, food, and everything I need
  • my parents are in a position to lend me money when I need help and are willing to help
  • my husband works hard and helps out around the house way more than any other man I know
  • I am making friends
  • I’ve started doing yoga regularly, which I am proud of because it was one of my goals for this year
  • I am working with a life coach and it is making such a difference in my life
  • I have a massage booked for tomorrow, which means that I can get some relief from the tightness of my chest and back muscles that’s been plaguing me since my cold/bronchitis started mid-October (coughing is a b*tch on the thoracic musculature)
  • I am finally feeling better and getting over my bronchitis, which means my energy levels are increasing again
  • I have the day off from work tomorrow so that I can run some errands and practice self care
  • Christmas is coming!
  • I’ve been easing back into exercise and I feel good about that
  • I got to watch The Walking Dead without distractions tonight

As I countdown to my 39th birthday, I am thinking about what I want my life to look like. Of course, I am working with a life coach, so this is something I’ve been thinking about a lot already. I’ve started making changes: going out of my way to talk to people and build relationships; joining a women’s cross country skiing group to develop relationships, work on my fitness, and enjoy winter for a change; decluttering my house; practicing yoga on a more regular basis; developing an attitude of gratitude. I have been considering committing to a race sometime next year – a local one so that it’s easier on the budget – because I would like to get back to running and setting a bigger goal, like a half marathon, is often very motivating for me. At the same time, if I commit to such a big goal, I also have to give myself permission to listen to my body and take care of it with a healthy diet, yoga, sleep, and strengthening so that I don’t end up with a(nother) long-term injury. As I read somewhere, possibly Runner’s World, if a race entry of 50 bucks gets you running and healthier, it’s worth it, even if you don’t make it to the race. I couldn’t agree more.

Looking for Motivation

Resolutions for 2014I’ve been thinking about running lately, because one of my goals/resolutions for the year is to start running again by April 1st. I have a couple of injuries holding me back at the moment (right foot plantar fasciitis, left IT band injury that has been there for years but has been bothering me lately) and obviously I need to rehab those before I can really start running. I’ve done physio, but it was pretty expensive, inconvenient, and didn’t fully deal with my injuries. I’ve decided it’s time to take a self-help approach and started reading The Running Injury Recovery Program by Bruce R. Wilk. I’m making my way through it, but the idea is that you assess and treat yourself, so we’ll see how it goes.

Although I’m not running yet, I have been thinking about training for a specific event later this year, because nothing motivates me as much as the idea of traveling does. I’ve been looking at a few women’s races, as well as The Tower of Terror 10-Miler at Disney World (which I did last year) and the Rock’n’Roll Vancouver 10k. I thought I’d share a few links that I came across.

Women’s race series websites:

Zooma Women’s Race Series

Women’s Running Series

Run for Women

Divas Half Marathon and 5k Series

See Jane Run Women’s Half Marathon and 5K

Mermaid Series

A list of women’s races for the year from Another Mother Runner

Other races ideas:

Rock’n’Roll Vancouver 10K

The Twilight Zone Tower of Terror 10-Miler

As with last year, I figure that even if I can’t run a race, I can still walk one.

Do you like to travel?


Day 22 of 30: Veggies Are Back in My Life

My legs are pretty stiff from last night’s workout and stairs are quite the challenge. I’m working out with my trainer again tomorrow morning. Here’s hoping we’re doing upper body/core and giving my legs a bit of a break.

One of my favourite holiday things: a Starbucks Skinny Peppermint Mocha. Click on the image to see the nutritional details.

Food journal for today:

  • Starbucks grande skinny peppermint mocha
  • orange
  • 2 hard-boiled eggs
  • 1 c cucumbers
  • All Bran Bar – cinnamon oat
  • banana
  • Oikos key lime yogurt
  • no sugar added chocolate pudding
  • Caesar salad
  • 1 1/2 pieces of garlic bread
  • beef and bean chili
  • 2 small shortbread cookies
  • hot buttered rum
  • orange

I’ve been meal-planning, and it’s made a difference. I’m consuming veggies and fruit with regularity again. Also, I spend way less money on lunches. Today was not a stellar eating day, but much improved over last week.

I’m still feeling wiped. Going to do some stretching and go to bed.

Day 12 of 30: So. Much. Sugar.

I have a sugar problem. Once I start, I find that I justsugar cubes want to keep consuming it. Inevitably, I crash and feel terrible. Rinse, repeat.

Anyway, I know sugar/starches are a problem but have some major self-control issues when it comes to both. Tonight, I came home, promptly consumed some leftover Halloween Peeps and a peppermint brownie with vanilla ice cream. Once the sugar blues kicked in and I started to feel nauseous, I decided I’d better take control and get some cardio in. I got into my workout gear and hopped onto my stationary bike for half an hour. Feel much better now.

I have no solution, but thought I’d lay my problem out there, because I’m pretty sure I’m not alone, especially when it comes to mindless eating in the evening.

So, workout – yes. Water – not so much. Vitamin D and acidophilus – before bed. Food journal – nope. Tomorrow is another day.

Day 9 of 30: Getting Back Up

Friday was the kind of day where you get home and barely have the energy to get into bed. No workout, but I did four hours of painting. I didn’t food journal, either.

Yesterday, I continued slacking off. No food journal, no workout.

Today, I did a core workout and water was pretty good. What did I eat?

  • oatmeal with cinnamon, 3 tbsp raisins, vanilla, 1/3 c skim milk, and 1 tsp brown sugar
  • grande skinny peppermint mocha (love these!)
  • 1 can (2 servings) of clam chowder (I had a craving)
  • 1 mini Mars bar (Halloween leftovers)
  • 6 baby carrots
  • 2 c romaine lettuce with Caesar dressing
  • 1 slice homemade lasagna
  • 1 piece garlic bread
  • 1 Twisted shot (in celebration of the Riders win)
  • ripple chips and onion dip
  • 1 peppermint brownie

So clearly things went downhill as the day progressed, and, man, do I ever need to start eating more fruits and veggies.

My eating plan tomorrow?

  • oatmeal with raisins for breakfast
  • green monster smoothie, too – 1 c skim milk, 1 banana, 2 c spinach, 1 scoop protein powder
  • lasagna, baby carrots (NO garlic bread)
  • Oikos yogurt and apple
  • chicken breast with salsa and a little cheese, brown rice, green beans

Still not super-super healthy, but an improvement.

Keeping a food journal has made it apparent that I need to do more planning. I’m relying on eating out too much and choosing unhealthy snacks way too often. We also have a shortage of fruit and veggies in this house on a regular basis, which sure doesn’t make healthy eating easier. With Christmas coming up, I think it’s important that I take steps now to make sure that I keep any weight gain to a minimum. I plan to create a meal plan for the next month, fully expecting that it will have to be tweaked as I go along because we all know that the holidays can get out of control with extra activities.

What are your favourite fruit choices during the dark days of winter?

Day 7 of 30: Food Journal Update

No blogging yesterday, and no food journaling, either – way too long a day. I did workout and did pretty well with the water, but it was the kind of day where you get home and barely have the energy to get ready for bed.

Today was better. Not as tired. Worked out with my trainer tonight – upper body and core. I am going to be so sore in a couple of days!

As part of my November goals, I committed to keeping a food journal. It’s a tool I’ve used in the past and I found it really useful when I previously lost weight. As you might imagine, the food journaling has been interesting. I haven’t altered my diet as of yet, but I am amazed – in a bad way – at how much crap I’m eating and how few vegetables I’ve been getting in. Today was worse that usual, but not by much:

  • Mini Wheats and skim milk for breakfast
  • a slice of Pizza Hut Triple Crown pizza, a Diet Pepsi, coconut Oikos Greek yogurt, and ripple chips and dill pickle dip for lunch (I was ravenous and obviously made bad choices)
  • DQ for supper: cheeseburger and onion rings with a medium Diet Pepsi (in a rush and tired and no food in the house)
  • 3 mini Mars bars
  • banana

Yuck, right?!? No wonder I’ve been feeling like I have no energy and am tired all the time, and I can’t lose weight – I’m eating like I want to pack on a few pounds. I’m fueling my body with crap! Nothing like keeping a food journal to open your eyes to what you’ve really been eating and to motivate you to do better.

I’m definitely keeping up with recording what I eat. Gotta keep myself honest, and it’s really pushing me back toward meal-planning, too, which is a good thing.

Day 5 of 30: A Little More Yoga

The sore throat is nagging again tonight. I’m treating it with herbal tea and going to bed right away. I did not sleep well last night. My daughter, who’s 7 years old and likes to cuddle when she has bad dreams, crawled in with me around 5am this morning.and disrupted the rest of my night. She likes to hog the blankets and bed, so I ended up cold and shivering and nearly falling out the the bed before I shoved her over and got myself an extra blanket. Let’s hope tonight’s sleep is better.

Decided to get some yoga in tonight because I didn’t have the energy for much more than that and I’ve got a kink in my neck. Not sure the yoga helped that much, but my hips feel better.

Was short on water today, but did take my acidophilus and vitamin D. Have not food journaled yet, but plan to before I go to bed. Got a workout in, too. I’m working out tomorrow morning, and then I’m working out with my trainer Thursday night. Friday will be either a cardio or yoga day, and then I’ll lift some weights Saturday. I’m thinking yoga or cardio on Sunday – maybe both. What do you do when you have a sore throat?



Day 4 of 30: A Little Light Cardio

I’m feeling a cold coming on. I’ve got that sore, tight feeling in the back of my throat that not only suggests that I’m getting sick but also makes me feel sad because it’s the same feeling I get when I’m trying not to cry.

A round-up of today:

  • Food journaling – check
  • Workout – check (5 min warmup, 15 min moderate cardio, 5 min cooldown)
  • Acidophilus and vitamin D – check
  • Enough water – check

I was going to lift weights tonight, but since I was feeling a little under the weather, I decided what I needed was cardio, just not at too hard a pace. I also figured I needed a bit of a mood lift and scrounged through my DVD collection to find a movie to watch while I rode my stationary bike. I wanted something funny but not too cheesy and dug through my drawers and bins until I found Love Actually. How can you not laugh at Hugh Grant dancing to the Pointer Sisters? I also have a total crush on Andrew Lincoln (Officer Rick from The Walking Dead) and will watch pretty much anything with Colin Firth.

Is there a movie that lifts your spirits every time you watch it?


Day 3 of 30: Lazy Sunday

I woke up a few times last night and heard the wind pelting the house with rain every time. Around 5:30am, I couldn’t go back to sleep and tiptoed down to the couch and did a little reading until I drifted off. When I woke up – when I heard the kids moving around – it was still raining. It was one of those days: grey, windy, drizzly, eventually shifting into dark, windy, and snowy. In other words, the perfect day to curl up into the corner of the couch with a blanket and do some reading and watch TV.

I got ready for my trainer to come around 2pm, but she never did. She was on call with her regular job, so I assume that she was in the middle of work and couldn’t get away. Without out her, though, I felt uninspired to jump into a hard workout. I opted for yoga instead. It was just that kind of day.

I food journaled, had enough liquids, took my acidophilus and Vitamin D, and worked out. It’s officially a workout streak now.

The wind is still gusting, except now it’s blowing snow sideways, rather than a little rain. Guess we’ll see what we wake up to tomorrow morning. My vehicle is parked in the garage, but I don’t have winter tires on my vehicle, which will sure make driving fun tomorrow, what with slipping and sliding and dealing with other people slipping and sliding.

What do you do on dreary days?