Posted in Uncategorized

Just tooling around..

I’m such a putz.  Aileen over at Army Pants and Flip Flops posted an entry all about how she used Pinterest as inspiration and organization for her wedding day.  The way that I relate to people is to share something about myself that is similar to what they’re sharing.  On paper it sounds find, but in practice it might come off as a bit self-centered.  So what do I do?  I just keep commenting.  No really–like after-thoughts.. I think she ended up with 4 comments from me? Oi oi oi.. 

In other news… the only thing exciting going on is that work has been crazy as per usual.  We’ve got another batch of new hires and thankfully they’re all showing promise.  There’s a couple of snags that snowballed but we’re working through those.  Learning week is coming up and I’ve got a couple of really promising training classes that I was able to sign up for.  The first is ‘Inclusiveness,’  which helps to break down the difference between tolerance and acceptance and make it easier to communicate and work with people from varied and diverse backgrounds.  The second is a communications course about inter-generational communication.  There are 4 cohort groups that we work with right now and one of the issues that was a snag and snowball is because one of the older members of my team didn’t take me seriously when I provided guidance.  I’m really looking forward to that class and hope that it’s more up to date.  My god, if they talk down to me as a member of the young-and-entitled cohort, I’m going to walk out.  Because that doesn’t help me to understand the other generations, that just tells me I’m a spoiled brat.  It might be true, but WORK WITH ME, PEOPLE!

Lastly, school is great, but it’s MEA week.  No school tomorrow, so I’m going to take the time to get some of my work out of the way that I’ve been falling behind on… at work. Overtime just isn’t enough time to finish what I need to do.

Posted in Fitness, Gaming, Menu Planning, Strength Training

Fail to Plan, Plan to Fail

The age old adage of ‘fail to plan, plan to fail’ has been used as the mantra for weight management (loss/gain/maintenance) for as long as I’ve been trying to manage my weight.  What I have noticed, however, is that the more I plan, the more I fail.  How terrible is that?  Maybe I just rebel against authority, even if it’s my own.

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Take, for example, the K.I.S.S. blog entry wherein I wrote about these easy workouts that I could and would do every single day.  Ever since that entry–I haven’t worked out once.

Yes, the workouts are taped RIGHT TO THE FRONT DOOR.  They are literally in my face whenever I go to leave the apartment and whenever I pass into the kitchen, and yet, I’ve turned a blind eye and ignored them completely.

The fitdecks and resistance bands, too, are gathering dust.

This is a pattern that I have noted more than once about myself.  I start off with the best of intentions and I plan and plan and plan… but that’s as far as my motivation gets me.  I finish up with the last detail of the diabolical weight loss scheme and my motivation goes (with a thick Minnesota accent) “Oof-da! That there is enough work–you betcha!” and my motivation just clocks out.

2013-01-09_12-38-38_427My latest endeavor is to participate in this 8 week book-learning course (through work, of course) that details healthy eating habits for all (not just people looking to lose weight, but really the right way to eat as a regular ol’ human being).  I like to think I know it all, but the pre-test showed that I’ve got a lot to learn.  I’m hoping that the structure of that class will help to keep my mind on fitness and that having a variety of OPTIONS available to be active and healthy will help me to succeed.

One of the healthy-minded girls that I interact with on Facebook posted a pin from pinterest that showed using post-it notes to set daily goals with daily rewards, so I decided to give it a whirl:

2013-01-10_11-39-17_593I liked the idea so much, actually, that I put the template in a frame with the post-it notes on top.  In case it’s too difficult to read, the first goal is to “Clean up/off desk at work: wall, surface, files.”  The reward for completing this task is “new batteries for my butterfly

The second goal is to “Set limits for gaming: pre-requisites, curfew.”  The reward for this task is a new set of batteries for my kitchen scale (CR2032).

gw541

The last goal is to “Check out/join community center.”  Because of the area that I’m in, and the agreements that the localities have with each other, I can actually join any of three community centers in my area for about $30/month.  The one I was looking at last night would let both Jeff and I join for $50/month for both of us.  They have access to a 24 yard (I think?) lap pool, sauna, whirlpool, tennis courts, cardio machines, weight machines, free weights, and group classes including aqua zumba–whaaat??  I really want to check that out this weekend.  The reward for checking out the community center is a walk outside with Jeff.  D’awwe 🙂  He’s already agreed to be a part of my reward system hehe.

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Posted in College, Fitness, Food, Life + Living

K.I.S.S. – Being Better at my Job

The last *real* resolution I have for the year is to be better at my job.  Now, that statement is not simple nor smart, so I’m just going to try to make it fit within those guidelines.  The two ways I know of to get better at my job are to:

1.  Arrive to work on time.

This is the “simple” part because all it takes on my part is to leave home on time with enough ‘cushion’ for traffic.  8:15 am is okay, if too early, 8:45 am is okay, if too late, and 8:30am – the ideal time to leave based on travel time – is a horrid pain in the ass as far as traffic is concerned.  Testing out the ideal times to leave last week left me harried and completely frazzled by the time I got to work if I left at 8:30 am.  It felt like there were a disproportionately greater amount of speeders, weavers, and distracted drivers compared to 15 minutes earlier or later. In fact, I was nearly run off the road twice last week by ragers who would rather speed up when they see my turn signal than to let me move over into the lane.   When we’re already going 60MPH (96 KPH) that’s a dangerous situation!! And much too early in the morning.. I would rather be late to work than to deal with that sort of mayhem. Which is what I have been doing.. which is why I’m here making a goal to be early instead.

2. Continue training/education

Since my employer provides tuition reimbursement for college courses, I am going to resume my college schedule after the wedding.  In the interim, I am an active member of Toastmasters and have set a goal to give 1 speech per month and to fulfill 3 alternate roles per month in Toastmasters from now until June.  By doing this, I will complete 4 training hours per month, checking the box on that requirement, but it will also keep me in the routine of extracurricular activities that require some thought and effort from home.

So, the Simple Goals: Show up on time; keep up in Toastmasters.

The Smart Goals (be on time):

S – Specific – Show up to work 5 days per week before the scheduled start time, ideally 8:45am.  This means leaving the house at 8:15am in order to avoid the road ragers and distracted drivers.

M – Measurable – My time card will reflect my efforts.

A – Attainable – If I can’t show up on time or early to work, I don’t deserve to keep my job @_@; This is definitely one of the most attainable goals for me.

R – Relevant – Being on time is paramount to my position because other people rely on me to be there.  Moseying in whenever I feel like it creates a window of almost 20 minutes where people could be waiting for my assistance.  It doesn’t look professional, nor is it courteous to my mates.

T – Time-bound – This one will be continuous, but I will provide a progress report weekly.

S – Specific – Perform 3 roles in Toastmasters, and complete 1 speech per month.

M – Measurable – check the box, did I do it or not?  The speech, at least, will be scored on a rubric and has the potential to mark progression of expertise in delivering speeches.

A – Attainable – Given that I have taken a break from school in order to focus on current life events, I think that it is entirely reasonable to do Toastmasters with some of my spare time.

R – Relevant – Toastmasters improves my functioning at work because it is improving my grammar and spelling, but it is also improving my active listening skills.  More often than not, I find myself being a passive listener and multi-tasking while people are explaining something to me.  Since joining Toastmasters, I have become a more attentive listener and started to provide co-workers my undivided attention.  This will make me ‘better at my job’ because it will improve interpersonal relationships and further reinforce the notion that I’m a professional.  This will be important, should I decide to apply for a more professional role.

T – Time-bound – This goal has a mid-marker in June.  I will be doing monthly updates on my experiences with Toastmasters.

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So, we’re a week into January so far, and I had set some pretty normal goals previously of cooking dinner at home and working out regularly.  We’ve cooked dinner at home 5/6 days 🙂 The grocery bill this week was $145 and so if we can continue to eat the food we have at home, we can stand to save almost that much in the breakfasts, lunches, and dinners that we buy from restaurants because it’s inconvenient not to.  I’ll continue to track this.

Work outs have not been completed the last three days, I have no excuse except that it’s not a switch you can flip.  It takes time to build new habits and to break down the old, but working out is still something that is important to me.  I will be checking out the community center after work today and I have a new pair of work out pants to sport if I decide to join up.

How are your new year’s resolutions going?  Did you forget about them yet?

Posted in College, Life + Living, Self-Reflection

Choices: compromise for success

I figured out last night that they shut off the a/c at 8, and the lights at 9. I studied by the glow of my computer until about 9:30 and then called it a night.

Being an adult is hard, lol..

There are days when I kick myself for going to work instead of finishing college first. But, the thing is, I love the work that I do, the people that I work with, and the opportunities that I have to grow and progress in my career. No, it’s not easy to do it all, when it all is so much some times, but I am glad that I have the opportunity to do so, and the support from all of my family and my friends.

I also figured out why freshman gain 15 pounds their first year–“dinner” last night was Nutter Butter Bites and a Pearson’s Nut Roll.  Had I gone home, I would’ve had baked salmon with lemon and pepper, but I also wouldn’t have gotten as much done.  These are the choices we make.

Posted in College, Life + Living, Self-Reflection

Creative Commons: Synergy in a Bottle

Ever since I pointed out that I begin many of my blog entries/paragraphs with the word “so” I have been beginning my blog entries with “so, *backspace, backspace, backspace, backspace, think: what do I REALLY want to say?*” and then I start writing my entry.  Just a little fun-fact for you.

I am happy to report that school is going well.  I’ve earned extra credit for watching and analyzing Catfish, playing around on a-google-a-day, and proposing additional reading from a great website called Utne Reader.  I’ve earned between 80-100% for my regular work in this class.  It’s going much better now that I’ve got a better instructor.  The first week was ridiculous.

copyright mashed-up and remixed from Copyright Remixed on Vimeo.

At any rate… This week one of our tasks was to watch a video about the evolution of copyright law.  It is a really interesting look at the progression of protection for creative works.  I was happy to see that it ends with a small introduction to the Creative Commons License (which, you may notice, I use for this blog).  Watching the video inspired me to actually update my Creative Commons License to add permissions for derivative work provided that I am credited/cited as a source, that it’s not sold, and that the same sort of creative commons license is applied — For example, if you like my recipe for shrimp, pineapple and bacon, but you think it would taste better with shrimp, pineapple, bacon and honey barbeque–by all means, use my original photos with a link-back to the entry and then post your own photos and talk about your creative idea.

I think it’s really cool when people can work together to build something awesome.  If people didn’t have the ability to build off of one another’s work, where would we be?  We certainly wouldn’t have all those awesome meme’s to waste our time with all day

Posted in Fitness, Life + Living, Strength Training

Rode my bike to work! And then some..

Yesterday was a good enough day weather-wise that I decided to check out the route to work.   When I ‘measured’ it in my car, it was about 5.5 miles.  Google Maps estimated it at 4.7 miles.  When I geared up, I was prepared to do between 9.4-11 miles.

I did it–and getting to work actually went faster than expected!  I took a victory photo and then started heading back towards home.  Wanting some accountability, I had posted a message on Facebook as an open invitation to meet me at a coffee shop that was right on the way home, so I went there next.

Sparkling Mint Lime White Tea.  Yummo.  I would LOVE to know how to make something as delicious as this at home without all the sweetness.  It tasted delicious, but I still had some miles ahead of me and it made my mouth all sticky.  I had maybe half of it and then refilled my water bottle.  I just looked it up online, and for a tea, it’s still not a great choice nutrition-wise:  240 calories, 60 carbs, 58g sugar, 67mg caffeine.  Well… Coffee Shops still remain firmly in the treat category…

No one took me up on my offer to meet up.  After hanging out for about an hour looking at the Parade of Homes catalogue and studying a little bit (textbook on my phone, booya), it was time to head back.

The only problem?  I live in a highway dense neighborhood.  I took a wrong turn.  On my bike. And had to go 3 miles out of the way to correct it.  Oi!

Whoops. Apparently clover-leaves are not lucky.

So after a long and tiring ride wherein I was thankful for both Dubstep and Sunscreen, I returned home, little worse for wear.  All day yesterday after my ride I had tightness in my chest and I would cough if I breathed too deeply.  Nothing to be worried about, just a little exercise-induced asthma like symptoms. I think if I want to continue doing this that I’ll need to get some biker shorts and maybe talk to my doc about the post-cardio breathing issues.  I mean, they’re not bad enough to interfere with usual tasks, but it’s a little scary to have a coughing fit induced just by taking a deep breath.

Anyway, I’m going to start with once or twice per week, and build it up from there 🙂 It went really well.