I have just completed my first month with 99 walks and although I’ve met my goal I think I have also realized my limitations. There was a day that I could walk a brisk pace for miles on end. However, my back and hip have convinced me those days are long gone. I don’t do well walking hills and unfortunately flat areas are not in great supply where I live. I will however grin and bear it at least for now for no other reason than to try and build up my stamina again.
I’m afraid I have already missed the boat for getting healthy so I do not set any expectations but it has already convinced me that before the middle of this month a visit to a chiropractor is in order! So that’s a better step in the right direction than my previous attempt at improving my health. I hope that reading my failures will entice everyone to join this group. I can say starting 99 walks has gotten me more aware of the time I spend sedentary and in front of the computer or TV. So, come join me with 99 walks, one done, 98 more to go?! I want to live vicariously through your successes!
Operating a campground is not your ordinary 9-5 forty hour work week. The days are long and your weekends are busier than the previous five week days. There is an occasional rainy day that you may escape for the afternoon and do something unrelated to work but not on a regular basis… While friends and family relax and have parties and picnics, you are working 14 hours per day after which you collapse onto the bed hoping to get a sound sleep so you can put in another long day all over again. I am not one who is able to sleep with ease, and over the years, spend more time in the office and less time walking the camp. Hence over time, I have become much more out of shape than when I first began this lifestyle. The lack of sleep, poor and irregular eating habits in addition to being tethered to the office, has long term effects that are not only unattractive but unhealthy.
After a year and a half of taking Ambien CR and still getting only 2 hours of sleep, I needed to try another approach. After all, prescription drugs are not always the safest and most beneficial way to go, and decided to try and take a healthier approach to life. Venturing into a health food store intending to take the “all natural” route, I stood in the aisle and looked around me. In my wildest imaginations, I could not have been prepared for the thousands of products that bombarded me and vied for my attention. It never occurred to me I might be lacking in so many vitamins, minerals, and supplements. I did not know I might be so full of so many toxins and parasites! Feeling guilty that I would have allowed myself to deteriorate to my present state, I came face to face with my own mortality and realized if I did not make some changes, I’d be speeding to the end of my days at an alarming rate!
Hurrying to the front of the store, I grabbed a shopping basket and began filling it with various products that promised to cleanse and extend my life – and not a moment too soon. It took two trips and a few hundred dollars, but I was confident that my life was turning around and felt invigorated. One can’t be positive, but I think there was already a spring to my step as I walked to the car. No doubt by the end of the month, I would be sure to feel the effects of the new healthy me. Next step was checking the calendar to know when I would need to restock, and with any luck it would coincide with the third Thursday of the month when everything is 20% off. Added to the purchase was a new pill box so that I might always have my various vitamins with me and start the routine of taking them with my meals. And to ease me past my self admitted forgetfulness, I grabbed a bottle of ginkgo biloba to improve my memory. Anxious to meet the new me when I gazed into the mirror 30 days from now, I wondered if anyone would notice the change I was already feeling.
They say the road to hell is paved with good intentions. If that is true, I believe I have secured myself the smoothest ride possible. Though I have been to the health food store several times, the greatest visible change is the amount of clutter on top of my bedroom bureau. The new pill box proved useless the first time I started to fill it.
It had room for less than 1/3 the number of pills I needed to take for the new improved healthy me. But a larger box would not have solved the problem of me forgetting to take them. I came to realize how blessed I was that there was no illness to medicate regularly to stay alive, because if so, I’d be dead in a week. The ginkgo biloba does absolutely nothing while still in the bottle, and until someone comes up with a dose that will jettison into my mouth at the precise moment my lips and teeth part to bite into that forbidden biscotti, I am doomed. The store is not without its redeeming properties however. They have some things like the almond crisp crackers, dried pineapple, wasabi peanuts, among other tasty snacks that seem to defy the need for the memory enhancers. Miraculously, that 30 day supply disappears in considerably less time. I have also accepted the fact that I will not live to be 100 and I’m o.k. with that. Now 64 years old if I look at the progression at which I have aged, I don’t want to think of what I’d look like at age100! I have every intention of informing my family that I would like a closed casket since I missed my opportunity at the age of 23 for anyone to kneel before my corpse and remark “she looks good”.
In addition to nutrition, there is exercise, or the lack of it. Although it took weeks of searching before and after Christmas to find the wii fit game, it baffled me why this game had been all the rage. The first thing it does is insult you with an audible wince when you step on the board. In addition, it tells others who step on the board that I’ve been sloughing off! Obviously the patient privacy act doesn’t cover the Wii with its patronizing trainer. Yet, I also was swept up in the self flagellating habit of stepping on the board and allowing a 15” tall avatar order me to the point of exhaustion for an hour every day for weeks. Having then had the opportunity to go away for two weeks, the Wii was left behind. On my return, I was insulted for not stepping on that board, and found my avatar asleep. Did I mention that after exercising for a minimum of an hour every day for over two weeks I gained a pound and a half?
I have stood up against grown drunk men the size of gorillas, as well as some of the bitchiest women on the planet, while walking camp at quiet hours and never felt as intimidated as with the little avatar on the Wii game. I’ve been home for more than a week and haven’t mustered up the nerve to start again. I am willing to admit defeat, thankful that we do not have tails – I’m not sure the diameter of my thighs would allow for the customary retreat!