Week 24 To Health and Fitness

I persevered through another week on my mission to health and fitness. This week has become another turning point in my journey – mostly in a good way but I do have a bit of a challenge going.

Starting with the POSITIVE – my physical and emotional health are definitely going well. We have been getting a lot of heat and rain so very humid (for us). Despite that… I have managed to keep up with my daily walks with Molly and my daily You Tube work outs. The workouts run 30-45 minutes and I can work through them without a single pause.

This is the one I did today. It is one of the videos that I have been using regularly lately. πŸ€—

Molly is still having her difficult days on our walks and today was no exception. I am expecting a package from Amazon today which includes a new training harness for her. I sure hope it helps settle her down a bit!

I did clear out some clothes in my closet that has gotten to be too large for me now. That has to be a good sign and I am sure happy to see it happening! ☺️

I am noticing a definite shift away from just pushing myself through workouts, walks, salads, and cold showers. I still do all of those things but now those things are a natural part of an overall active and healthy lifestyle. I am still excited about getting fit – and my goals are going beyond myself to others –

  • Being able to provide Molly with the active lifestyle she deserves
  • Being a stronger, healthier partner for Dan
  • Being a better role model for our grandkids
  • Being more active and outgoing in our neighbourhood
  • Being an inspiration to others who are toying with the idea of adopting a healthier lifestyle
  • AND something that has become increasingly important to me – Doing everything I can to avoid being an unnecessary burden to our already overburdened Health Care Services. Even without my chronic health issues, I think that is so necessary.

The NEGATIVE this week is that I am finding myself dealing with a mental meltdown of sorts.

I have been on this journey for five and a half months. I have been more than happy with how it has been going and the results I have been seeing. Whoo hoo! Yay me!

Living LARGE!!!

But during the past few days, I have been finding myself interacting with likeminded souls. I have met a number of people in our local parks – one here, one there, walking their dogs, jogging, on their bikes and I have joined a small group of fitness conscious individuals online. This should all be great! They are all friendly, amazing people working towards a common goal.

But here’s the thing. My mind is suddenly flashing back to high school phys-ed classes. My Saskatchewan highschool phys-ed classes of the early seventies were NOT about physical fitness or developing a healthy lifestyle. They were about discovering the next hockey or football star or the next Olympic athlete. They were about competitions between teenagers who were not even close to being on a level playing field but being judged by who could run faster or jump higher or throw a ball further. They were about winners who were given trophies and medals and losers who were abused mentally, emotionally, and physically.

I know, this is bizarre and rediculous. I am sixty-seven years old. I have done things in my life – big things – major accomplishments. I should have the confidence and capability to see someone who can outperform me physically without coming unglued. But here I am…. judging myself and finding myself lacking. πŸ™„

The good thing is, I know it is just one more challenge to face and overcome. Just like the physical challenges that I have pushed through and the emotional challenges that I have pushed through, I know I can and will push through this and come out all the better off for doing so. Hopefully sooner than later. πŸ™‚

Just another bridge to cross!

That’s it for today and this week’s fitness update. Take care and have a great day!πŸ’žπŸŒž

It’s SUNDAY!

It is another beautiful Sunday morning in southern Saskatchewan. 🌞

Molly and I went for our early morning walk.Β  We crossed paths with Bike Lady and her two dogs.Β  She stopped to have a short chat before going on her way.Β Β  Following her, we met up with another woman walking Myles from Mexico.Β  Molly and Myles checked each other out while Donna (?) And I chatted.Β Β  In the overall scheme of things, Molly did fairly well until we came to the tail end of our walk.Β  Obviously, she had been saving up all of her bad behaviour because she was pretty darned obnoxious on the homestretch.Β Β  It didn’t help that we had to pass at least a dozen yard dogs and they were all having a go at setting her off.Β 

Other news for the day?Β  Dan and I are celebrating our twenty-third anniversary today.Β  It seems incredible that it has already been twenty-three years and amazing that so much could have happened in only twenty-three years.Β 

With Dan’s Dad (d. 2003) and my Mom (d. 2013).   

And… I had my Sunday morning chat with granddaughter Genie.   TBH we had  today’s  chat yesterday.  She was so excited about her boyfriend Alec going up to Edmonton today to drive home with her tomorrow, that she got her days mixed up.  It is so funny… It  seems like yesterday that she was a sweet little tot bursting with love, joy, and excitement.  Yet here she is, all grown up (and despite all she has been through) –  sweet as ever and still bursting with love, joy, and excitement. πŸ’žπŸ€—

She sent me an assortment of photos to share today.  I hope you enjoy!

Food for Thought?
No idea what she was thinking! πŸ‘€
Checking out special Midway visitors…
Batman!!!
Spiderman on the double decker merry-go-round!
Genie’s animal friends for the week seemed to be the slippery, slithery, reptile sort.
Mellow yellow…
😯😯😯
πŸ™„πŸ™„πŸ™„
Hiding in plain sight…
She must have been reminded of Bubbles – the turtle she grew up with. πŸ’ž
On to this week’s art fix.
Okay… πŸ€”
And finally she shared a couple of her sister Maddy’s latest adorable creations. πŸ’•πŸ€—
Precious 🌹🌹🌹

That is it for today. Take care and have a great day!πŸ’ž

Win Some, Lose Some

Molly and I completed yet another walk this morning. It was not as challenging as yesterday’s but it is still a work in progress.

We went to the ball diamonds first and that was not too bad. Molly tried to grab the leash a few times and leap up on me when I refused to wrestle her for it. Because I had solid fencing for support, I was able to maintain balance and ignore her until she decided to give it up (at least for today). She turned her attention to any litter she found, but lost interest in that soon enough. She did find a couple of empty pop bottles that entertained her for a while. Finally, she discovered that the grass was alive with grasshoppers and butterflies. She did catch a grasshopper but the butterflies managed to elude her. Maybe if she hadn’t been dragging me along on her leash…. Anyway, once she tired of chasing insects and checking out weeds, I led her over to a big puddle of fresh rainwater where she enjoyed splashing around and quenching her thirst.

From the ball diamonds, we headed over to Regent Park. On the way we crossed paths with Bike Lady and her two small dogs and a young man exiting the park. Fortunately, I had my new secret weapon with me..

A clicker and a treat work like a charm for getting and holding Molly’s attention.

We made it through Regent without any incidents or unruly behaviour, despite coming across a woman with a small child and several trees and boulders that were calling out for Molly’s attention. We even made it home and past a few yard dogs no worse for wear.

So Molly was the win today! I am not trying to break her spirit. My goal is just to get her to a place where I am confident that we are both safe and that she has the social graces to wander further afield – to bigger, busier city parks and to country trails around Regina. That would be great!

Now for the Loss… We got home and Molly settled down. I had my breakfast and my beet juice, and relaxed for a bit. Then I set out to do my daily workout. I got cocky and started to think how great I was doing. I have been keeping up with these Monday through Saturday workouts for months AND seeing every one of them through to the end, even on ‘bad’ days. Yay! Then I did it. I swung my arm out and smoked a Hornet with one of my fingers. He/she did not appreciate the smack.

Well that stung!

My finger felt like it had been jabbed with a red hot needle and my hand started to tingle. I considered working through the pain but decided it might be better to slather some Benadryl on it and take a break. The pain is not as sharp as it was, but my hand is still sore so will see how this goes.

Other than that my only news worth noting was a text from granddaughter Prim and a new picture from her yesterday.

Another budding artist in the family.
Prim πŸ’ž

Up until a few years ago, Prim and her sister Maddy spent a lot of time here with Dan and I. Other than swimming, their favourite pastime was Arts & Crafts. It is so funny that now, they have totally swapped their artistic styles. Maddy is all about delicate and detailed, while Prim is big and bold. The total opposite of what they were.

That is it for today. Take care and have a great day! πŸ’žπŸ€—

Cats, Crows, and Crazy Pups

Molly and I went for our walk this morning and not to brag or anything, but it was an EPIC fail.

We did not get halfway to the Regent Park before we crossed paths with THREE free range cats.   These beggars are big and cocky.  Before we got back home, we came across two more.  It is not what I need when I am holding onto a pumped up pup who was just looking for a rumble this morning. 

She may look all meek and mild but she was running on all cylinders this morning.

We managed to get through the first park of the day none to worse for wear.   Well except for the potty break.  I don’t know what is worse  – back in the days when Kat would stop to poo three or four times on our walk –  or now with Molly  and having to clean up a pile of sh#t three or four times the size of Kat.   At least Molly likes to do her business close to a garbage can, unlike Kat who preferred to do hers in the middle of a busy intersection as far as possible from a garbage can. 

Anyway… We got through Regent Park and made it across Elphinstone to Patricia Park.

Patricia Park looked fairly quiet.  It was not!  The trees were filled with CROWS. 

I have no idea where all the crows have come from this year but Molly is on a mission to send them back there.   We somehow managed to make it through Patricia Park, across the bridge and around Pony Park, and back to Elphinstone.  It wasn’t fun but it was relatively quick. 

Back on our side of Elphinstone, we headed for the ball diamonds.  We almost made it around the first one before Molly had some kind of meltdown.  She grabbed the leash in her mouth and tried running around my legs.   Not only did she take me down with her but she tangled us up enough that there was no elegant recovery from this one.  We make it back to our feet none the worse for wear, but the grounds keeper dude on his little tractor on the other side of the fence took in the entire spectacle.

Four or five ball diamonds later, and a relatively uneventful stroll across a field and and our little street and we made it back home.    As soon as Molly was off her leash, she made a mad dash for her pool, tore around the yard a couple of times, sped through the house and dove into her kennel, where she has been sleeping ever since.

They are so cute when they are sleeping. πŸ™„

Meanwhile, I had my breakfast, relaxed for a bit, and did my workout.  With any luck at all Molly will take it easy for the rest of the day and I will get something done this afternoon.

That is it for today. Take care and have a great day! πŸ’ž

Walking off the Celebration

I had a great day yesterday. Once again, I would like to thank everyone for the well wishes. If I missed anyone in the individual replies, I am so sorry! Every birthday wish, and comment on my improving fitness, was genuinely appreciated!

I had a very nice day which was topped off with two of my favourite foods for supper. KFC and Carmel Cake.

Made it myself but it was SO good.

Neither a choice that I would recommend for a healthy diet, but one has to keep it real. How many birthdays does one get in a lifetime? (Ok! Apparently it can be quite quite a few since this was my 67th πŸ˜‰) Other than that, I stuck to my fitness routine yesterday and I was back to it this morning.

Molly & I heading into the new Regent Park.
We had to stop to admire the wildflowers.
The crowded paths were manageable. 😯
As were the deserted green spaces. πŸ™„
Molly was relatively good today… except walking around the ball diamonds. I don’t know why she was determined to look over the fence every two minutes. I could see through the chain link? πŸ€”
We finally ran across some other visitors to the park. We have SO many crows this year. Why is that?

That is all I have for today. I came home and finished my workout so it is time to get some real work done around here. We had another heavy rain yesterday afternoon and Molly decided it would be a great time for a romp around the yard followed by a run through the house. I did clean up as best I could at the time but there is a still a wet dog smell lingering about the place. Nice…

Take care and have a great day!πŸ’ž

Sixty Seven πŸŽ‚

Today I turn sixty seven and I have to admit, I have never been so excited about growing older. πŸ€—

Every year of my life has brought joy and sadness, love and loss, challenge and triumph. This year has been no exception, other than that the past five months have been exceptional when it comes to personal growth, wisdom, and understanding.

It all started so innocently and easily. I felt miserable and looked worse. Physically, mentally, emotionally – I had drifted to a really blah place. One day, enough was enough. I got off my butt, cranked up some tunes from the sixties and danced. I started to eat better and I found ways to improve my diet and fitness level.

  • In the past five months I have:
  • Gone from basic dancing to Zumba (aerobics to music) using free videos on You Tube
  • Mostly given up junk food snacks
  • Spent more time planning and preparing healthy meals
  • Started drinking six ounces of beet juice, and eating a couple of tablespoons of sauerkraut a day. I also eat about a quarter of cup of sunflower seeds a day – which I buy raw and airfry with olive oil, lemon juice and hot sauce.
  • Started to take cold showers in lieu of hot baths
  • Started walking my Pyrenees pup every day
  • Meditated daily for the first three months – not so much lately – but I have been spending a lot of time out and about, enjoying fresh air and the sights and sounds of nature.

Everything I have been doing takes minimal time out of my day, the cost is negligible, and the results have been amazing. Physically, mentally, and emotionally, I have never felt better or stronger. Surprisingly, shockingly actually is that the one change that I have made, that I enjoy the most, is the cold showers. I go from cool water to straight ice cold. The initial discomfort is NOTHING compared to how much better I feel after a cold shower. My dry, itchy skin is gone! Even on a cool day, I am warmer getting out of a cold shower than a hot bath (because the air is warmer than my skin), and I just feel good. One can never imagine a cold shower as being a good thing but it is a game changer. ☺️

Now for the before and after….

July 2020 – Celebrating my birthday with Dan, Amanda & Family
July 2021 – Celebrating Dan & Amanda’s Wedding Reception 
July 2022 – Feeling better than ever and looking forward to turning 68 just so I can use this photo as another ‘before’ picture.

That’s it for another day – and another year. I have no idea what this next year has in store for me. It will probably be a mixed bag of challenges and blessings – BUT I am ready for both and everything in between. I am so glad that I took that first step five months ago. It is never too soon and never too late. πŸ‘

Take care and have a great day!πŸ’ž

Sometimes it is hard to tell a challenge from a blessing. πŸ˜‚

Week 23 πŸ€—

I can’t believe it has been a week since I last posted.Β  I don’t know how retired people fill their time each day but we definitely do.Β  Like I have heard so many others say, “I cannot imagine how I ever had time to work” !

Monday is usually my wellness/fitness update, but I am going to post that tomorrow to coincide with my sixty-seventh birthday. (Complete with before and after pictures. 😳) Hopefully, people will see how much healthier and happier I look. πŸ™‚

In lieu of my regular Monday update, I have a few bits and pieces of my last week to share today.

We had a short surprise visit from our granddaughter Maddy. She is SO grown up all of a sudden that it is hard to believe she is the same wiggly, giggly, pigtails flying tot of a few years ago.

And, I had not one, but TWO chats with Maddy’s older sister Genie this week. In Calgary, she was excited to be given the opportunity to do some extra promo work at the Stampede. She was escorting dignitaries around the midway, as well as a film crew making some promo videos. She had a lot of fun and was even captured in a couple of the videos. πŸ€— Now she is in Edmonton and counting down to being in REGINA next week. It will be great to have her back in town for a few days, even if she will be busy working. Any free time she has will be well spent sleeping in her own bed and visiting family and friends.

And then there was Molly! She grows bigger every day and her voice is coming in loud and proud. Her energy level is also growing exponentially.

Molly had the zoomies.
And the hungries!
And the messies!
And an occasional sleepies. 😴
We also had a furry little guest yesterday. He was not the least bit timid!
Our mystery plant is blooming like crazy!
And our garden is coming along nicely! If blossoms are any indication, we will have tons of tomatoes, cucumbers, and zucchini.

That’s all for today and this past week. Take care and have a great day!

Week 22 to Wellness

I am still pretty much in a holding pattern as far as progress is going!Β  I am not terribly concerned or even disgruntled by this.Β  I am not losing ground, which is good and I figure for the time being the progress is just going on beneath the surface.Β 

My blood pressure is still holding really good.Β  I have been averaging 120/76 over the past month and that was with a couple of little spikes. I don’t know if the improvements is due to my daily workouts or the beet juice but I will keep doing both.

I am also still doing the sauerkraut.Β  I don’t know if it is helping my digestion any but it is sauerkraut and I love it and it came highly recommended so sticking with that as well.

I have been partaking in a cold shower every day or two and I can’t say how much I am enjoying them!Β  I don’t even like hot showers but I feel SO good after a cold shower.Β  It reminds me of a Mark Manson quote that Genie shared with me a couple of weeks ago..Β  “Wanting positive experience is a negative experience, accepting negative experience is a positive experience.” So much more profound than “No pain no gain.” πŸ™‚

And the good news this week!Β  After a couple of ‘challenging’ walks with Molly this weekend, we had a great one this morning.Β Β  If she hadn’t gotten excited and jumped all over the hard hats at the Regent Park exit it would have been an A+ for her.Β  To be fair, I think they wait for her now and they do get as excited as she does when they see us coming,Β  so it isn’t ALL her.

Pathway in Patricia Park
We walked all three parks again and the only other visitors we met out and about were a couple of old crows. 😒
Molly was proud of herself today – and deservedly so.

The weather was perfect! The mosquitoes were tolerable. The litter was not too bad. All in all a beautiful way to start the day, and again not something I plan to drop from my daily routine.

That’s it for today. Take care and have a great day!πŸ’ž

Sunday Morning News

It is Sunday morning, so that means another update from our wandering girl Genie.Β  It is the final day of the Calgary Stampede so tomorrow it will be time to tear down the midway and move on to Edmonton.Β 

Genie’s been working some pretty intense hours in Calgary, but this week she did find the time to follow her heart and visit the art displays.Β Β  She sent me photos ofΒ  a few of her favourite finds, so hope you enjoy!Β Β  AllΒ  of these are just amazing and a tribute to the talent of their creators.

This Native chief was done entirely of melted wax crayons.
Wooden Sculpture
My favourite!
I can see how this one made Genies list of favourites.Β  She has always had a soft spot for angels.Β  (I think she can relate.πŸ’ž)
Genie’s first book collection.

A little angel background…. When Genie was too young for preschool, she understood the concept of words and taught herself to read by having us help her to read signs – any and ALL signs.Β  When she was about seven or eight, we went to Walmart one day,Β  where local author HenryΒ  Ripplinger was signing copies of the first book in his “The Angelic Letters Series”.Β Β  Genie was star struck to meet an actual published author.Β  He told her she was probably too young for his books but she turned those big eyes on me and of course Grandma indulged.Β Β Β Β  Needless to say, she read the book, cover to cover barely setting it down, and she was hooked.Β Β  She has acquired and devoured every book in the series since. I believe she had gotten most if not allΒ  of them autographed.Β 

That is about it for today. Molly is sleeping off our morning walk (which went less than stellar), Dan is at work, and it is time for me to sweep and dust for the first of several attempts to keep this place in relative order today.

Take care and have a great day!

Molly is Five Months OldπŸŽ‚

Molly – Five Months Old πŸŽ‚

Molly turns five months old today. Neither Dan nor I were sure how having a BIG dog in a small house would go, but so far I would say that despite the occasional hiccups, things seem to be going along just fine.

Molly is beginning to find her voice. It is very deep and very loud, but one or two barks and she is done. If another dog is barking at her, one or two Molly barks – and they are done. πŸ€—

Molly loves to steal shoes and chew on them a bit, but so far she hasn’t totally destroyed any. My black leather heels have a little more character than they used to and Dan really needs new laces for his Sketchers.

We had Molly back in the big pool yesterday. We were totally impressed with how well she was swimming – until we realized that she was just walking around the pool on her hind legs. I guess that is kind of impressive – in its own way .

Molly did really well on her walk today – finally! We walked the trail through the new Regent Park (where three maintenance guys made a huge fuss over her). We walked the entire path at Patricia Park (twice). AND – we practically ran home through the ball diamonds. ☺️
Molly learned to dump her water bowl onto the kitchen floor so Dan scored this beauty for her from Peavy Mart. It stores her food under her dishes and lifts them high enough that they are comfortable for her to eat out of.

That’s it for today. Take care and have a great day! πŸ’žπŸŒž