Tag Archives: Health

The Much Promised Sobriety Post

Remember, kids, smoking is bad for you

In what seems like a long time ago, I decided to give up drinking for Lent. My last drink was on Saturday, March 5 (otherwise known as St Louis Mardi Gras) and my next drink was Saturday, April 23. By my count, that’s a full 49 days of stone-cold sobriety.

I thought it would be really difficult to do. It was surprisingly easy. Luckily, for the majority of this time, I was so busy I didn’t have the time or energy to go out. Sure, there were some nights that would have been a lot more fun with a drink or two, but I was already committed.

I often felt guilty when not drinking or eating at an establishment. I almost always tried to order food (which wasn’t super healthy either) but sometimes it was not an option. Usually, I was with others who were drinking my share and then some, and I don’t take up too much space, so I guess I was just being Midwestern.

The best thing about sobriety was not having to worry about being hungover the next morning. And not worrying how I was going to get home at night (almost wanted a cop to pull me over!).

The worst thing about sobriety was getting hassled by friends. Some didn’t understand. Some kept trying to find ways for me to “cheat.” One (non-Catholic) in particular tried to tell me that drinking was healthy and there for not an appropriate thing to give up. Totally missing the point.

Now on the other side of sobriety a few weeks, I know that I am not an alcoholic (yay!), but I do have a poor ability to keep it in moderation sometimes. I won’t stop drinking, but it is something I look to work on.

Out of the woods

I think it’s safe to say now, that it’s finally spring-like in St. Louis. If we get a freak snow storm tomorrow, you know who to blame. It’s been really nice all week; we even had to turn on the AC last weekend!

What’s currently making me happy:

Tulips outside our apartment! Thanks, Landlord!

Peeps! In all their Easter glory! I love peeps, but they must be yellow or pink chicks. None of those bunnies, thank you.

Something I’m not digging right now – but is also a sure sign of Spring – are my horrendous allergies. Itchy eyes, sneezing, the works. My car is covered in a thin film of pollen and when I’m at home with the windows open, my eyes go nuts. You take the good with the bad, right?

The last few weeks of not drinking have been kind of rough. I’m really looking forward to going out Easter weekend, but proud of myself for making it this far. Only 10 more days to go! More on what I’ve learned through sobriety later…

Nike Free, a review

So I posted earlier that I finally bought new trainers. Being a lazy ass, I’ve just now busted them out 10 days later.

These are the Nike Free TR Fit, which are the cross-trainer version of Nike’s new Free line. They also have a running shoe, but, as I don’t run, I got the trainers.

On a scale of 1 – 10, with 10 being the best:

  • Comfort – 8
  • Flexibility – 10
  • Traction – 7
  • Style – 5

Comfort – Overall, very comfortable. Normally, I have issues with my big toe falling asleep (or something like it) when I’m on an elliptical for longer than 15 minutes (I know this is not normal), but I didn’t have any problems with these.

Flexibility – This is kind of the draw of these shoes, and they weren’t lying. When doing calf raises the entire shoe bends with your foot. It’s like not wearing shoes, but with the support of wearing shoes! Fantastic. As someone who prefers to move barefoot, but whose knees need a little help, these are great!

Traction – I did experience a little slipping around on the elliptical pedals, but they definitely had some grip on the regular floor.

Style – They are a little goofy looking on. The toe – bed is fairly wide, so they kind of look like duck feet. They also make a little squicky noise when I walk on concrete due to the traction.

Overall, I’d say they were a good buy. At $85, decently priced (compared to other Nikes). Very happy with my purchase and hope to have a long, healthy relationship with these babies! Well, until they wear out…

Spring!

Today was the first day of Spring and it was an absolutely gorgeous day! Last night I was in a ridiculously bad mood despite hitting up Shaved Duck (get the meatloaf! seriously!) and went to bed early. I got up around 9:30 this morning and felt fantastic. I really think life would be so much better if I could get a few more hours each night.

I woke up JW and convinced him to walk to Kayak Coffee with me. It was such a beautiful day, I had to do something outside. Later, I went to my parent’s finally and took a lovely walk with my mom. Unfortunately, I was wearing flip-flops and my feet aren’t in flip-flop shape yet. The space between my toes really hurts.

I entered my office’s NCAA pool for the first time ever and my bracket is shot to shit. Illinois just lost; however, I was smart enough not to let my alumnae loyalties get in the way of reality and picked Kansas. I know, I’m a terrible fan. They fought the good fight so I’m not too upset they lost. OSU dominated today, so I’m sure JW is happy.

It’s been a pretty good weekend. Lots of work and stress as busy season wraps up, but 80* weather and family today was really redeeming. Despite my enthusiasm Friday night, I did not start 30 Day Shred Saturday. Will try tomorrow morning.

Progress

Tonight was the first Friday I’d been home before 6pm in 4 weeks! During busy season, we usually work until 8pm (or later) Monday through Thursday and then leave at 5 on Fridays. We also work some on Saturdays (and Sundays). However, I’ve been out of town the past month, first in Texas and then in Southwest Missouri, so I haven’t been getting home until 8 or later.

With all my new-found free time, I finally bought something I’ve been talking about for a long time:

New trainers! These are the Nike Free TR and like advertised, are super flexible. My old shoes (Nike Shox) were giving me Achilles tendon trouble whenever I did any side-to-side work, since they were really made for running. Plus I got them senior year in college (2007), so I think I’ve gotten my money’s worth! Hopefully they will motivate me to work out more. I’m planning on (re)starting Jillian Michael’s 30 Day Shred tomorrow.

When I got home from shoe shopping, I was really craving stir fry so I improvised with some stuff we already had and came up with this:

I used Uncle Ben’s Garden Vegetable Ready Rice, Birdseye Steamfresh Asian Medley and 2 scrambled eggs. It was satisfying and healthier than takeout. And super easy! [The plates are a kitschy “blue onion” pattern my parents got as a wedding gift from my Dad’s parent’s best friends. At least they were free!]

Today is the 10 day mark of my Lenten resolution, and not drinking hasn’t been too bad. I survived my first true test at trivia last Sunday without issue or awkwardness. Of course, we had something else to keep us occupied. I don’t feel too much healthier, but it is nice to wake up hangover-free! 30 days to go!

Up and At ‘Em

I hate this saying. Who is them? And why must I get at…them? Pretty much everyone who knows me, knows I am a sleep-a-holic. I love sleep. There’s a line in The Divine Secrets of the Ya-Ya Sisterhood where Vivi talks about sleep being delicious. Despite this being a section in which she is running away from her husband and children, this description has really stuck with me. I totally get that. Don’t judge my reading selections.

I also have a terrible habit of hitting the snooze button. My college roommates used to make fun of me for hitting the snooze for hours on a Saturday morning. “Why do you even set it?” they’d ask. I had every intention of getting up early and being productive, but unless I have something important to get up for (i.e. work), I am in a completely irrational fugue state in which staying in bed and sleeping for another nine minutes is the smartest decision ever.

I really need to work on this. I would love to work out before work, even if it’s just for a half hour. I tried to do this before busy season started; I even asked JW to wake me up before he went to work (around 6:15 – gross). This did not work. I need to have the motivation to do it on my own. If I can only get up when I’m accountable to someone else, I should be able to get up if by being accountable to myself. More to come…

40 days…

I gave up drinking for Lent. As a fairly lapsed Catholic (sorry, Mom!), it’s kind of silly for me to even worry about giving something up for Lent at all. I’m really doing this more for me.

I’ve recently started reading Daily Garnish (I highly recommend!) and the author (blogger?), Emily, gave up drinking in her mid-20s. You can read about her decision here .

I definitely related to her story, especially the parts about college. I feel like drinking is so intertwined into the social scene of college and early post-grad, that it’s hard to have an objective look at your behavior. When everyone else is doing beer bongs, downing a 6-pack seems normal. Let’s be honest, it’s really not healthy. Sure, a glass of red wine is heart healthy, blah, blah, antioxidants. But, I’m not really a wine drinker and I certainly wasn’t having one glass.

Recently, I had to have a “physical” to start a life insurance policy. The nurse was asking the standard questions about alcohol consumption. My options were Never Drinks, Occasionally Drinks, Often Drinks, and Boozehound (that was really what she said – but I don’t remember the highest level). I said Often. The nurse prodded a little; I think she wanted me to say Occasionally since it would give be a better score. Little did she know I was actually toning it down to Often.

Carrying on like I did in college — drinking, eating crap — has done me no favors in the fitness department, especially since I don’t have the marathon walks to class to balance it out. I need to make some major changes to my life if I don’t want to continue going up a pants size every 2 years. Drinking, surprisingly, seemed like the easiest thing to change, and Lent gave me the perfect excuse to try.

At this point, (5 days down, 35 to go!) I fully expect to drink after Easter. But who knows, maybe I’ll feel downright fabulous and decide to stay off the hooch forever! Either way, it’s probably a good break for my liver.