Preparing for Hikes

Merry early Christmas!

I’m making an inventory of my gear and getting ready for a hike in a week. I told my husband, Josh, that I may need to go to REI for a water bladder for my small backpack. Poor Josh went into his hiding place and brought out what was supposed to be a Christmas present: collapsible water bottles!

I’m so glad I have a thoughtful sweetheart who is usually two steps ahead of me! 😄

Now we can go on our hike next week and be hydrated. I have a hard time remembering to drink water, so this is a great thing for me to have handy.

A New Start… Again.

Horesepasture Mountain Trail, Oregon June-ish 2021

I am getting off of social media. I’m not inactivating my accounts, I’m deleting them. It’s a little scary, to be honest. But I’ve been wasting too much time on Facebook, TikTok, etc. Facebook is now Meta (and getting weirder) and they own Instagram and Messenger… And it’s all so bad! People tell strangers to kill themselves, they criticize and hurt, and they post things that my heart was never meant to see. So, I’m out, betches! I’m deleting it all and doing better things with my life (I hope).

One of the changes I’m making is with physical exercise. Oh, I’ve had a LOT of changes recently (I quit my manager position a few months ago and am working back on the floor, I got married last year, etc.). But after quitting an extremely stressful job, I swore to be more physically active. And I have been! I’ve been going to the gym, swimming and biking, and recently enlisted the help of a personal trainer. But I want more. I’ve decided to hike.

I went on some hikes this last summer with my friends Dani and Lisa. It was awesome! I have some equipment and a little courage, so I’m going to hike more. With friends, with my husband, and solo. I bought a book titled, “52 Hikes for 52 Weeks,” which has a bunch of hiking information for Oregon. Next week I’ll be doing one with my husband. I picked a relatively easy one (I think?) to do, to get started. Since I won’t have social media in 4 days, I have decided to post the photos and information here. I don’t imagine I will be doing a hike every week… after all, some of the hikes require snowshoes, which I am not ready for. But I can do others. I am excited to see what I can accomplish, how I can change my health and my body, and what will ultimately come out of this.

Worms and Workouts

The kitten has… worms.  Yeah, I’m not surprised either.  But it’s still not fun.  S/he is almost eight weeks old, so old enough to have the medicine.  Not quite old enough for the flea medicine though.  I put the half of a pill in butter, which the kitten didn’t want.  So… we had a very uncomfortable moment where I forced the poor thing to take the pill.  I felt terrible!  But we’re friends again now.

It’s probably a girl.  It’s a calico, and apparently there is only a 0.03% chance of a calico being a boy!  Wow.  I had no idea the odds were that extreme!  She has just made herself at home on my lap. using my hand as a pillow, so I’m typing one-handed.

I did CrossFit yesterday.  We did Russian kettlebell swings and abmat sit-ups.  We did 50 of each, then 40, 30, 20, and finally 10 of each.  Then rested one minute and finished up the workout with a 500 meter row.  Ummmm… it was tough!  To do the prescribed workout, or as it was written, the kettlebells would need to be 44 lbs for women.  I usually use a lighter weight, with my heavier kettlebell at 35 lbs.  So this many at 44 lbs was tough.  I’m so sore this morning!

My Whoop asked me how I felt this morning: was I rested, was I sore, how sore, etc.  I am sore, Whoop, SORE.  But I’m also really proud.  I did 44 lb kettlebell swings, 150 times!!  Wow!  I am thankful for the coach.  He pushes me.  I don’t think I can do things sometimes, and he’ll tell me, “Oh, come on!  You can do that!  Don’t be afraid to be strong.”

I’ll admit, I’m glad they weren’t American swings (Russian swings go to eye level, American swings go all the way overhead).

workout c whoop

My Whoop & Me

I got a Whoop.  That sounds a little… naughty, doesn’t it?  A Whoop is a new activity tracker.  I’ve used my Apple watch for the last couple of years, but I don’t think it’s as accurate as I’d like, and the battery runs out fast.  I do love that I get texts on it… 🙂

The Whoop seems different from other activity trackers.  As it should be, for it costs quite a bit!  I got a veteran’s discount, which was pretty awesome.  Otherwise, I probably wouldn’t have gotten one.  I have a lot of hopes…  We’ll see how it does!

Here’s some of what it does:

whoop

It basically looks at my heart rate and calculates the heart strain, and then balances it with rest/sleep for recovery.  I can dig it.

I’ve done well on my diet and exercise this week.  Tomorrow is a rest day.  That won’t go so well with the Whoop, but it’s good.  I did go to a get-together, and felt obligated to have a drink before leaving.  I had one beer.  Then when I got home, I had a glass of wine and a shot. Ha!  I am trying to only have alcohol on the weekends, but the beer kind of ruined it for today.  Back on track tomorrow!

Side note:  The battle is raging between Old Cat and New Kitten.  The kitten gets scared easily, but the older cat is SO OFFENDED that she runs outside or into the garage at every opportunity.  After hissing and growling, of course.

Working Out

I did CrossFit this morning.  Sometimes it’s tough going back, even if you’ve only been off for a few days.  I was sick with a gnarly cold, and took about a week and a half off.  I went back once or twice last week, and am trying to hit it harder this week.

We did deadlifts for strength, then a circuit of running, box jumps, and wallballs.  I hate all three of those.  Oh, the hate is strong.  I actually did less on all of them.  I was careful about how many I was doing, as I didn’t want to cheat myself.  However, I still finished dead last.  I think if I would have used a lighter wallball and a lower box, I would have been faster.  But I was trying my hardest.

gym

This was my board to track my deadlifts.  We were doing a 5×5… or basically, five deadlifts, then rest for two minutes, then another set of five, increasing in weight with each set.  I’m pretty happy with the results, but I know I have the potential for much more.  My one-rep max WAS 200 lbs., but then I basically took the entire summer off (last year) to go bike riding whenever I could.  I lost a LOT of strength.  I was also eating low-calorie and low-fat, something that doesn’t make me feel very good.

I’m also a bit competitive, although not too much.  There’s another gal in my gym who used to lift much less than me… we lifted the same amount in our deadlifts today.  Great for her!  But it made me take note.  I want to do more! Ha!

I’ve eaten well today, for breakfast and lunch.  Dinner will be fish tacos (lettuce “shells” for me), so that should be fine.  I won’t drink wine tonight.  I won’t!!  I’m trying to only have alcohol on weekends.  I understand that alcohol is where I get most of my fat, so I’m trying to show some restraint.

Side note:  We’re getting a kitten tonight after work!  I’m very excited, but nervous about my 14-year-old cat, who may not tolerate this well at all.  We’ll see.

Day One

I ate pretty well today.  Breakfast was an egg and a sausage patty.  Lunch was an avocado (and a half) with plantain chips and sweet potato chips… with a string cheese.  Then dinner was chicken cordon bleu “pasta” with spaghetti squash.  The bad:  wine with my dinner.  I allow that on the weekends, but I think I should change that to Fridays and Saturdays.  Sundays are harder, since I tend to work out on Monday.

Josh and I are getting a kitten.  This is unrelated to my “Viking” journey, but it’s still exciting.  My cat, Grace, can’t forgive Josh for being the one to sleep in the bed.  She’s not allowed to sleep on the bed (Josh’s ONE rule), so she hates him for it.  She’s 14 years old, and we’re getting a kitten.  I’m SO. EXCITED.

Back to the other stuff… I’m happy about what I ate.  I’m okay with the wine, since it’s a weekend.

I’ve ordered a Whoop band.  It’s a new activity band.  It doesn’t have a watch, it doesn’t take text messages or phone calls.  But it does help me understand how much effort I put out.  It helps me know how much sleep I need, and how much recovery.  And I think it’ll be a good guide for workouts.

I have more of a Viking body type than I have of a model body type.  I can’t express how happy that makes me…Food1

The picture is of the chicken cordon bleu “pasta.”  It was f*cking great.  Cream, gruyere cheese, spaghetti squash, chicken… just delicious!!

The Beginning

I’m out on a bike ride with friends yesterday, and my pal Christine and I were talking about exercise.  I told her that I hated running, but I love the biking.  I’m not fast, but I just keep going anyway.  She looked at me and said, “You’re a Viking!”  Her reasoning was that I like endurance sports and lifting weights.  I do CrossFit most of the time, and weather permitting, ride my bike.  I have to say, CrossFit kills me.  Some of the things they have us do… I feel like my heart could explode.  But my favorite parts are lifting weights.

That said, her semi-joking statement really struck a chord deep down inside my psyche or something.  I loved the thought!  Not because I like raping and pillaging, but because Viking women are not dainty little creatures who take duck-face selfies.  In my mind, a Viking woman is beautiful, smart, and strong in more ways than one.  And they are not frail.  I’ve been dealing with some self-hatred (for many years), and part of that is because I weigh a hefty amount, I have large melons, and I am TERRIBLE with diets.  I’m guessing I weigh around 175 lbs. right now.  I will never weigh 120 lbs.  But suddenly, it’s okay.  Viking women don’t weigh 120 lbs!

So, I realize I’m not a Viking.  I’m not going to start dressing in furs and get a helmet with horns.  I’m not going to slay somebody with a sword.  And I’m definitely not moving to Norway.  But the whole idea is that I come from a Norwegian family, along with Irish and Scottish.  I have a good chance of having ancestors that were strong fighters.  And that is what I’m choosing to embrace:  strength.  I’m deciding, as of yesterday, that I can be fit and not skinny.  I can be strong and proud.  I can have large melons and not be ashamed of them.  In my mind, Viking women had large breasts.  I don’t know why, but I’m rolling with it.

I do need to lose some fat and get more fit.  I want to be stronger, but I also want to ride my bike.  I want to be better at hills, and I plan on riding my first century (100 miles) at the end of the summer, just before my birthday.  I will become faster, healthier, and I WILL find beauty in my own body.  This blog will be part of my journey.lifting