2022-01-08 Where’s the Bullseye This Year? 🎯

I’ve been thinking (and thinking and thinking and thinking) about goals, plans, resolutions, a new day, a new month, a new year. I’m getting closer to zeroing in on my target(s). 🎯🎯🎯

My good friend Rebecca always picks a word at the start of the year that will shape her year and help her focus on her goals. Sort of an overarching theme to the year that she defines. I guess this is a thing now but she’s been doing it for a long time now so in my book, she’s my inspiration. 

We don’t live near each other so communication is almost exclusively text. I texted a few days ago to find out what her word is this year to try and get my mind going in that direction too. I’ve had a few words bouncing around in my brain but nothing really stuck. 

This morning I thought about her word again and how it has multiple meanings (the word is light) and I like that. Then I thought about what I would like to do more of physically this year and the answer that came to me was yoga. So I decided that this year my word will be “stretch.” 

I can stretch my body and my mind and have stretch goals. Reaching beyond the mundane and the everyday for more. Yes, it’s kind of the antithesis of what I was striving for last year (which was to do less and de-stress) but if you read yesterday’s post you know how well that turned out. 🙃

The next step is to really put some concrete goals on the list. Here are a few I’m considering. 

  1. Read a book a month. 
  2. Write a new poem or free write once a week (this blog doesn’t count). 
  3. Do 20 minutes of yoga twice a week. 
  4. Maintain my 100 active sub count. 
  5. Lose 5 pounds. 
  6. Get 420 Zone Minutes each week (it’s a Fitbit exercise measure). 
  7. Average 30 minutes of custom cardio each day (another FitBit score). 
  8. Meditate at least once a week (failed last year but that can’t stop me from trying again). 
  9. Reduce my screen time by 30 minutes each day.
  10. Participate in at least 2 workshops and or readings each month. 

Each one is a means to an end and if I can do at least this, I’ll feel super successful. If I can “stretch” one or two and do a little more (or less depending on the objective) then so much the better.

***

Well, friends, I’ve been distracted and completely lost the thread for today. 

Perhaps I can pick it back up tomorrow. 

Tomorrow and tomorrow and tomorrow, 

~Miss SugarCookie

2021-12-29 In What Universe is it OK…

… that the answer to the question “Do you like pizza?” is different than the answer to the question “Do you eat pizza?”?!

The answer to the question is that in no Universe is it OK (unless you have some health reason not to). I am surrounded by people who can’t eat things. Gluten intolerance, IBS, lactose intolerance, shellfish allergy, high cholesterol, high blood pressure, diabetes, heart disease, fatty liver disease, peanut allergy, and the beat goes on and on and on. What has happened to human beings?

Do you know what is arguably worse than that? I am one of the only people I know my age or older who can still eat anything I want but I don’t. We’ll I sort of do, but I really don’t.

Hold up. What?! 

I like ice cream. Scratch that… I LOVE ice cream. But I don’t eat ice cream because it makes you fat. And by you, I mean me. I love cookies, and candy, and chocolate, and pie, and Lucky Charms, and THAT beat goes on and on and on.

I’ve got a real sweet tooth and always have. When I was a kid I used to spend every dime of my dime-a-chore allowance on candy from the corner store on Harrison Avenue. Empty pockets and a satisfied tongue were just a short bike ride away. I also got in tons of trouble stuffing the empty wrappers under the cushions of our velvet blue and gold flower couch. But now every time I think about eating something sweet I have this self-loathing argument in my head about it.

Every, damn, time! But why? 

Because I’m damaged, that’s why. You don’t get to be my age without some sort of damage. Life is like that and it’s frightfully unavoidable. 

My damage was an eating disorder I developed at the uncanny age of 34. Might have started slightly earlier than that, but it was full-blown by the time I was in the midst of my divorce and trying desperately to control one of the few things in life that I could control–my weight. 

I became so obsessed with being in control that I began to take extreme measures to push my body to see how low I could go. And because my soon-to-be ex-husband had conditioned me to think that paper-clip thin was sexy, I actually thought I looked good. To be fair, people around me also supported this notion by telling me that I looked great so part of my distorted self-image came from society as a whole lifting up a slender physique as the ideal. What a load of garbage. 

I think by now everyone can guess what “extreme measures” means and that’s not really my focus now anyhow. Right now I’m mostly concerned about the mental scars I still suffer from because of what I went through. 

Once I was on the other side of the problem, which is to say, once I felt like I had overcome my obsession and was really back in control, I kept that shit inside like a dirty secret no one could know. For a long time. I felt as if I was over the worst of it but would carry those experiences with me for the rest of my life. I guess one could say, never really cured. Which is how it went. Always a little nagging magpie in the back of my brain pecking away about fat and carbs and quantity and calories and numbers on a scale. There were no more extreme measures, but there sure was (is) one hell of a body-image issue.

That, however, was small potatoes compared to other things I had going on in my life. I was a single mother of two, a full-time working woman, and a homeowner with a desire to have more of a life than just those three sides. I didn’t have time to worry about the numbers but I didn’t really need to either. 

I ate right, exercised enough, and had a pretty good metabolism. When my clothes got a little tight, I just cranked up the exercise and paid a little more attention to what I was putting in my mouth. It balanced out naturally. But it doesn’t anymore, which IS the focus now. This struggle I find myself living with day in and day out. 

In the last year, I’ve gained weight. I’m not getting any younger and my metabolism isn’t getting any faster so it has become more and more difficult to lose a few pounds. My sizes have all gone up. The clothes, the bra circumference, and yes, even my underwear drawer is in serious need of an upgrade. Everything I own is uncomfortable and I have started getting mad about it. Really mad. 

I created a “Goodwill” pile and every time something doesn’t fit, I toss it on the pile. I’m getting thicker and my wardrobe is getting considerably thinner. I hate it. 

I don’t want to give up. I want to fight harder but I also don’t want to deny myself all the food that I love. Including pizza and cheeseburgers and fried fish tacos and yes, ALL the sugar too. This daily struggle has become too much an obsession. 

I wake up thinking about it. I constantly argue with myself about whether I should eat breakfast or not, if I should have coffee with cream and sugar or try to give it up, how much I eat for lunch and if it should be simple and healthy or 

Something I want because I like the way it tastes. And the best goes on and on and on like that until the last decision of the day is upon me. Do I allow myself to have an evening snack.

I use twisted logic to convince myself of doing what I really want in the moment and then get angry thinking about how I need to go shopping for new clothes. It’s ridiculous. 

My husband says I’m sexy and beautiful and at the perfect weight right now. He wants to “deprogram” my lines of thinking and help me to see what he sees. He tells me to treat myself to some new clothes and says that I deserve to spend money on myself. 

It’s not about the money. It’s about the shame of not being able to fix something I’ve always had control over. But have I always had control? 

That’s how it started, yes. As I said, I could control my weight but in the thick of bulimia and anorexia, it’s definitely a situation that was completely out of control. 

The question I have to ask myself is am I out of control now? What can I really do to help myself and fix this? 

Therapy maybe. Set a modest goal yet allow myself to indulge and enjoy. Be reasonable. Take my husband’s advice and go shopping. Be kind to myself and try to make peace with these 10 extra pounds. Take the pile of clothes that don’t fit to the Goodwill. All I can say is that I’ll try. Keep trying actually as a lot of this is already a part of the daily conversations in my head. 

Actions speak louder than words though so I think it’s time to end the conversations and make up my damn mind so I can stop wasting so much time arguing with myself. If I like pizza, which I do, then I should just eat the damn pizza.

With that my time is up. 

Peace and love, 

~Miss SugarCookie

2021-05-14 The Saltgrass Cheeseburger: 1.0 👎🏻

This morning I was cleaning out the top shelf of my refrigerator which is typically a space reserved for leftovers. When I go out to eat I’m rarely able to consume the entire portion of whatever it is I’ve ordered. I also hate to waste food and often live off of leftovers. Many times I’ll order strategically, knowing I’m going to make that selection stretch out to a second and sometimes third meal. 

I can tell you pasta, Chinese food, and baked potatoes reheat great and French fries, cheeseburgers, and anything with bread is never the same once it’s been refrigerated. I’m keen on reheating chicken fingers and making them new again in a Buffalo wrap and slicing up a leftover steak with some peppers for fajitas. 

Good gravy… I must be hungry. 

Anyhow, all this to say that among the boxes I had to toss because they aged out, was the leftovers from “Saltgrass” where we had date night last Friday. As I dumped the food into the trash I was reminded about two things. 

  1. How disappointed we were at pretty much everything about the restaurant. Driving home we agreed we’d never go back. 
  2. How I couldn’t remember having a worse cheeseburger…. And that I should definitely blog about it. 

Why? Because what’s the use of only “reviewing” the bomb burgers I’ve had the pleasure of eating if I don’t balance that out with the less than stellar experiences? 

I mean, they can’t all be winners right? And part of a balanced account of places I’ve been would be writing about those bad bad burgers. This one was actually a surprise. I mean, it’s a steak house so producing a good burger should be in their wheelhouse. 

When I read the description in the menu, I already had a bad feeling about it. American cheese? That’s a red flag. And nothing special listed, no options for sauces or additional toppings like avocado, fried egg, onion strings, etc. so it’s very basic bitch to begin with. Still.. I don’t usually order any of that stuff anyway and you can make an amazing burger without all that (not with American cheese mind you). 

When the burger came it was over cooked and there weren’t enough of the standard toppings so I had to half it (which I always do anyhow) and slide what I could on the half I was going to eat right away. It was very blah. 

How did they get the flavor out of the meat before cooking it is what I wonder. I mean, any way you slice it, the beef itself should be tasty but it wasn’t really. But I was hungry so I ate the half I’d cobbled together. And when it came to boxing up the leftovers, the other half didn’t make it into the box. Just Jim’s steak and Mac and cheese. 

I think the best thing we had there was the baked potato soup, which might just be because we were starving when we arrived. 

All this wasn’t helped by the fact that our waiter was also not great and we waited a long time for everything. He showed up at our table with a joke when he took our drink orders and then told basically the same joke when he took our food order like he didn’t remember what tables he’d made that joke with already. Jim and I looked at each other and rolled our eyes.

Anyhow.. there you have it folks.. the Saltgrass Cheeseburger review. Like I always say “they can’t all be winners.” 😜

But they are rarely this big of losers. 

That’s it for today. I now return you to your regularly scheduled blog posts. 

Cheers,

~Miss SugarCookie

2021-05-06 When You Find What Works, Don’t Fight It 🌳

Thirsty Thursday again and date night tonight. A 1-2 combo that aims to satisfy. 

As it often is, I think I’ve figured some things out this week and feel pretty good about my newest declarations. 

  1. No more volunteering to do interviews or lead workshops or make any public appearances where I have to speak. I’m officially releasing myself from all that noise. 
  2. I’m gonna put more focus on exercising, at home, and also let go of the classes I’ve been attending which don’t seem to mesh with my schedule. 
  3. I’m committing to an hour or two of GLR each day and am going to try to make that a regular part of my workday. This means not procrastinating until there’s a mountain of stuff to do. 
  4. I’m going to work on my diet… and try fasting and eating more Whole Foods again. Less processed stuff. (Within reason 😉). 

That’s enough right?! As this week has gone on, I’ve felt better and better and I think it has something to do with distancing myself from obligations that involve doing things that make my anxiety flair. It also has to do with regulating my sleep and productivity. I’ve gotten a lot done this week and have had decent sleep. 

Today I’m going to CB again and will see both of my parents. My husband works in CB on Thursdays so I may try to pop by his office for a visit…. You know, really make the trip across the Missouri River worth it. 

Otherwise it’s the typical line-up. Exercise, chores, GLR, errands, and then as I said it’s date night so I’ll need to finish everything on my to-do list by like 5ish. Our dinner reservations are at 6. We’re going to a new place we’ve never been before and you know what that means??.. It’s cheeseburger time! 

It’s a win-win-win as I also need to up my iron intake in order to donate blood next week. 

So that’s the plan for today.. let’s see how good I am at sticking to it (and my new declarations). 

But first… Cardio, 

~Miss SugarCookie

2021-04-23 Arizona Adventure Day 5: Flagstaff Friday Funday

Day 5. Friday. Much ado about nothing. 

Much of our vacation to this point had been go-go-go. Lots of activity—tours, hiking, navigating, driving, stopping, starting, and exploring. We had nothing planned for Friday and when we got to Friday, there wasn’t anything in particular we wanted to do. 

We talked about going to the Grand Canyon again but decided it wouldn’t be worth the drive to see what we have already seen. The same held true for Sedona. 

In truth I think we were just over driving more, so the decision to stick around Flagstaff and explore what it had to offer was a good one. Being mindful that this was the direction we were leaning even before we got to Friday, we had made early dinner reservations at a nicer Flagstaff restaurant. Early because by the time we were making the reservation, 5:15 was the only time left for Friday night. 

Having all day to cruise around and do a whole lot of nothing was delightful. 

We hunted antique shops for signs or Route 66 memorabilia and had a leisurely lunch at Fat Olives (I refused to eat at the same Mexican restaurant a third time in the same trip even though it was the best Mexican food I’ve had in a long time). 

In the afternoon we decided to see what we could discover in the forest that surrounds Flagstaff and did some google searches for a good spot. We came up with a few options including a cave. However, navigating to the trailhead that would lead to the cave, we ran into a bit of difficulty. It wasn’t the first time google maps had failed us on the trip. 

We ended up on private property in a little rural community and then crossed to the other side of the highway and found a campground. Neither was correct. We then followed some road signs to a different trailhead and gave up on the cave exploration idea. 

The trail we ended up on was completely ordinary compared to the one we were on the day before in Sedona. We hiked for about 2 hours and I wasn’t compelled to take any pictures. And that’s saying something since I had taken hundreds of pictures the previous 4 days. 

We saw some neat lizards, birds, and ground squirrels… but nothing as exciting as the coyote, elk, and deer on previous days. 

To be fair… I was also sort of tired of hiking. I was thinking the entire time about getting back to home base, getting ready for dinner, and having a lovely relaxing evening with drinks, hot-tubbing, and settling into a movie. 

Which is exactly how the rest of the day went as soon as we arrived back at our car. 

The highlight of the day was dinner. The restaurant was called Tinderbox and it was a somewhat fancy gourmet place. The atmosphere was a little upscale yet casual and the menu was limited to a single page of about 25 unique appetizers and entrees. 

We each selected a small plate to share. I chose salmon with crackers and Jim ordered the foie gras. The salmon was really good and I tried the foie gras and found it disgusting. 

For my main course I ordered the beef shoulder and it was quite possibly the most delicious dish I’ve ever eaten. The presentation was pleasing and the sauce and accompaniments were perfect.. enhancing the flavor of the beef without being overpowering. 

Normally I would only be able to eat half an entire but I could not stop eating it was so good. I ate the entire plate! Then our server offered us dessert and I simply could not refuse. If the main was that good.. how much better would dessert be?? 

The answer is pretty freaking great. I ordered the cinnamon donuts served with coffee ice cream, drizzled with chocolate. Again, I ate the entire thing. Well, Jim had a bite or two but I had the rest. 

Feeling very satisfied, we made our way back to the car and back to theAirbnb. We made a couple of drinks and cranked up the hot tub. It was a super relaxing night and a good way to spend our last evening on vacation. We both agreed we were ready to go home. 

That’s pretty much it for day 5. 

And the beat goes on, 

~Miss SugarCookie

2021-04-20 Arizona Adventure Day 2: Sedona Escape

Day 2. Tuesday.

On my “Grand” trip itinerary Tuesday was tagged as the day we would explore Sedona. In truth, all I really had planned was a late day (4pm-ish) couples massage followed by dinner at a nice restaurant.

The scenery and slightly warmer temperatures are probably at the top of the list of reasons why the city seems so busy and is also quite a bit more expensive to find a place to stay. I had considered booking a place in Sedona originally and the extra cost and extra drive time to the Grand Canyon are why I opted for Flagstaff.

When I booked the massage, the woman who took my call gave me some suggestions of areas to explore as we made our way from Flagstaff to Sedona down through the canyon on route 89A. The drive was amazingly beautiful, albeit a dizzying one. The switchbacks were some of the more intense I’ve experienced.

We stopped at Slide Rock State Park which is a paid spot. The guy at the gate made sure we knew the main activity there was a “swimming” one and not hiking. Swimming in quotes because very few people were actually in the water. Why? Because the water is a natural mountain stream flowing down over the rocks and it is COLD.

It’s called slide rock because the rocks are smoothed over boulders and you can actually slide down like a waterslide. I watched some kids doing it, and even an older woman who brought her own inner-tube. Classy. 😉

The entire park was cool to explore with some great vistas, but we definitely had the most fun walking into the water and taking some fun pics among the rocks. 

After we exhausted that bit of excitement, we made our way the rest of the way to Sedona to explore and have some lunch.

The place we ate was called the Hudson and it was a flight or two of stairs up, nestled on the side of a hill. Actually everything in Sedona is situated on a hill and the view in just about every direction is amazing.

We had a drink or two and ate at the bar. Jim had steak and I had a cheeseburger of course. It might have been the euphoria of the moment, but it was one of the best cheeseburgers I’ve had in my life.

It was actually a bison burger with white cheddar, bacon, and some sort of sauce, served with barbeque sauce and fries on the side. When Jim asked, I told him it was a 4.75. High marks indeed. I followed that by making sure he knew nobody gets a perfect 5. If it’s out there, I haven’t had it yet. 

Finishing lunch, it was time to make our way to the massage parlor across town. The tourist part of town runs all along 89A and is a hot mess of traffic all the time. Despite wonky directions from Google, we were able to find the place and find a place to park. 

The massage, as compared to the fun of Slide Rock and deliciousness of Hudsons, paled in comparison. But…. even a mediocre massage is a good massage! 

We were supposed to get dinner after that but we were both still full from lunch and a little too relaxed for fighting through traffic and crowds to find a place to eat so we basically got in our car and drove back up through the canyon to Flagstaff.

It was a pretty chill evening after that. A quick dip in the hot tub and we were both ready to call it a night. I think that’s it for Day 2. Another very satisfying day.

Winner, Winner, Chicken Dinner,

~Miss SugarCookie

2021-04-02 What is it they say again about doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different result?….

It’s going to be a beautiful day today and I have every intention of getting out there and enjoying it. I am going to CB and will see my mom but my aim is to spend a little time catching up with my sister. 

But first I’m gonna treat myself to an exercise class called “turbo kick.” The primarily focus of that is cardio but also has elements of core strength and balance. 

April has to be my month. It’s got to be the month I get my act together physically as I keep slipping farther and farther away from my ideal. I try not to get too bent when I gain weight but when my clothes don’t fit, something has to give. 

Jim says I should just buy new. To that I say, no. Nope. No way man. 

Yes, it’s true I could use some new clothes but I do not, not, not want to go up in size. My image of self-worth is damaged enough. I don’t need to add insult to injury by letting my physical self go. 

The reason for the weight gain?.. I’m no idiot and know that it’s not exercise that’s the problem. I think I get enough exercise and have pretty good heart health. All signs point to diet as the source of my problem.

My eating habits are currently very poor and, I may have mentioned a time or two before, but I’m doing my fair share of drinking lately which I believe is a major contributing factor to my weight gain. And I feel like my willpower is non-existent lately. 

I really, really, really have to change something. I really need to work out this healthy eating puzzle or at least find some level of moderation. And it needs to start today. I mean, I was going to start yesterday because it was the start of a new month but I failed miserably last night. 

Evenings are the toughest time. In the mornings I have zero problem sticking to the plan. I don’t even get hungry until 11 or noon and am able to cut out coffee with little more than a shrug. I get my caffeine through a pill and only miss the coffee for the sweet creamy flavor it has. 

It only tastes that way because of the amount of coffee creamer I add. I may as well not include coffee at all and drink the coffee mate right from the bottle! 😜

If I want something hot to drink, I can have an apple cinnamon tea as that doesn’t have caffeine or sugar. But I don’t crave that so I may as well have nothing.

Then I get to 3 or 4 or 5pm and all my resolve goes out the window. I get super hungry and start eating and snack and snack and have dinner and snack some more. And.. if I have a drink with dinner it almost always leads to more drinking.

I dunno. I’ve struggled with this aspect of trying to be healthy for so many years (not the drinking, just the eating healthy), I don’t know if I have it in me to change anything.

So there it is. The rock and the hard place. The place between where I don’t do anything or change anything because it’s just easier to stay the same. But now I’ve gained enough that it’s the heaviest I’ve been in my life (except for when I was pregnant). Something HAS to change.

I don’t have an answer right now. I really wish I did. I suppose like a lot of tough things I just need to take it one day at a time. Today I’m starting again. This time will be different. 

Fingers Crossed, 

~Miss SugarCookie

2021-02-28 Looking Back to Improve the Future… 🗓 ✅🚫⏰

It’s the last day of the month and the last day of the week AND the last day of my little experiment to untether myself from my phone. You know what that means? It’s time for the ultimate Sunday status. 

First off.. I’ve already been analyzing “stats” for about 50 minutes of today’s walk so either I’m gonna keep walking and get a huge boost on my steps today or this post is going to be super short. 

My update is also going to be a little skewed this week cuz I did try to disconnect from my phone and normal routine to see what affect that would have on my mood and outlook on life. 

This means I did not check my steps or sleep or anything else all week and did not keep track of meditation or eating habits. I just let it all go for a week. I didn’t have a FitBit in 2006 so I treated this past week as if I still didn’t. However, I still wore the FitBit so it could collect the stats anyhow. Why? Just cuz. 😜

Syncing this morning it appears that there are no surprises. Aside from the addition of exercise classes this week, my steps remained about the same and my sleep did not deviate from the norm. 

Those are the only two categories I have definitive results on. As I said the others weren’t tracked and are largely subjective anyhow. 

Moving on to the the results of my little experiment to bring 2006 back…. all things considered I would say it was kind of an epic fail. I suppose I did a fine job leaving my phone alone for the most part and embraced limiting my checking of email like a champ. I’m already a minimalist when it comes to Facebook and twitter and insta so it was easy to not open those apps all week.

In short, all things that are naturally easy were easy. The more challenging areas are responding to text messages and I came to conclude that I wasn’t going to be able to give up this daily blog. It’s the main activity that boosts my screen time each day. And that didn’t change this past week. 

My daily average screen time last week was 2 hours and 27 minutes (down 32% from the previous week). The previous week was about an hour longer. The devil, of course, is in the details. I can look at the apps and categories (productivity, social networking, and creativity) and see where my time is being spent. Very useful.

It looks like the reporting of data collected only goes back 4 weeks so I don’t have long term analytics like I do with FitBit, but it’s enough to analyze my week last week and perhaps set new goals. I’m not inclined to try and limit my productivity (this) but can definitely set a goal around “social networking.” 

I find it interesting that the messaging app is categorized as social networking along with Facebook and Twitter. I dig digging into this data and am already developing a new set of metrics and goals. I just can’t help myself. 🤣

***

Tomorrow is the start of a new month and new week which means an opportunity to start fresh and redefine the goals. Considering my attempts in February (and January too for that matter) fell short, I’m going to try and take a look at things from the new perspectives gained these past few weeks. I’m no longer going to be measuring “success” according to the same scale. Here are the new-new targets:

For sleep, instead of going according to the sleep score or duration, I’m going to be hyper-focused on whe time I go to bed. The goal will be to be in bed by 10pm with about half an hour of wind-down time beforehand. If I’m able to do that, the other stats should validate that it is working. 

I’m removing food and healthy eating from the set list of goals. Instead I’m going to try not to think about it as much. I’m putting the scale away and not imposing any restrictions or trying any fad behaviors. The ultimate objective is to put the focus elsewhere. I spend too much time struggling with the healthy eating puzzle and always seem to fail. Maybe if I let that shit go, I will have more time to work on other mental puzzles. We’ll see.

I’m keeping mood and meditation for now, but added an daily alarm on my phone to stop what I’m doing immediately and meditate. We’ll see how that goes too. 

As for the screen time and dependency on technology.. my new goals are to keep daily screen time down under 2.5 hours a day AND not more than 30 minutes on social stuff (remember that includes messaging). To support this I’m going to continue to keep my phone at a distance, both overnight and during the day. At least that part of what I did last week seems as though it would be easy to adopt more permanently. 

I’m not really changing my expectations for steps but adding 20 minutes of cardio as another check. The classes will help and I’m going to look into what cardio classes my gym offers. The strength training I started this week is great, but I’m really missing Jazzercise or some other form of cardio. If all else fails, I could always just bike here at home. 

I’ve actually switched to the bike now. I’ve perfected walking and typing at the same time and so this is a test of biking and typing. 

I think that’s the end of the changes for this week. Am I ready for a new week? Am I ready for March? Yes and no. 

Ready or not though.. time waits for no one.

Cheers to Healthy Living (and Analytics),

~Miss SugarCookie

2021-02-21 Sunday Status Funny Money 🐹

It’s Sunday and I’m checking my stats. How did I do meeting my goals? 

For sleep I achieved my goal 6 of 7 nights. 

Healthy eating.. 4 of 7. 

Mood.. 4 of 7.

Meditation.. 2 of 7. 

Exercise.. 6 of 7. 

Most of this looks good but feels a bit like funny money. Like you know how you get paid every two weeks for doing a job and the money is electronically deposited in your bank account and then some other company comes along and takes that coin back out for things like rent, electricity, insurance. It’s like a magic trick. One minute the numbers are there and the next.. Poof.. gone.. It happens automagically. You never actually see the cash, hold it, count it. That’s funny money.

Kinda makes a person feel like a hamster in a wheel. You know, in that metaphor what gives the hamster quality of life? Stopping to eat. Stopping to wee (or woo). And getting pulled out of the cage by the giant 6 year old who lets her run around the bedroom floor for a while. Perhaps getting a lettuce or carrot on these tiny adventures and of course weeing and wooing on the purple rug is the BEST! 

What does this metaphor teach us about life? That we need to maximize our time off the wheel. Cuz pretty soon now, that tiny little pumping heart can’t take anymore and the hamster dies. Poof!.. Just like that. 

I check my stats regularly. I set goals for my self. I’m constantly evaluating myself and my health. I gave up my old hamster wheel last year but I’m still on this one.

My New Years résolution this year was to do less instead of more. To be kind to myself and more forgiving. To meet that end, I backed off on my daily goals. But here we are nearing the end of February and I’m questioning the validity of all this. Like money in the bank, it all becomes numbers and checkmarks on a page. I add them up but they don’t amount to much.

So I backed off on my sleep goal and the result this week is a 6 of 7 instead of 4 of 7. So what? I still feel the same. I still have the same energy issues each day. I don’t get more restful sleep just because I back off on my goal. It just makes me feel better about how I’m doing. But it’s a magic trick. An illusion. 

It’s the same with the other stats. I have my daily step goal, which I reduced from 12k to 10k as a part of my resolution. So today’s calculated 6 of 7 would have been 4 of 7 instead. So what. It doesn’t change anything. And the other measurements are just as suspect. 

I took away “productivity” and replaced it with “mood” and I added one for meditation. Mood is subjective as there are no numbers and this feels more legit. Of all the stats I’m tracking, it feels the most genuine and important. I think that’s because that’s the real goal. To FEEL better. To FEEL healthier. To FEEL like I’m getting the most out of every day. 

Tangentially related is the brain child idea I had this week about inviting 2006 to 2021 and living life for a week the same way I was back then.

No smart phone. No social media. No googling everything or relying on the internet so much. It crossed my mind that 2006 was pre-FitBit too and before I tracked my stats so vigorously. 

It also predates any regular daily writing so my mind is really foggy with how life really was. It might be an interesting exercise to try and mentally recreate a day in the life of Miss SugarCookie in 2006. The first step of course is removing all those things I just mentioned. 

This means (if I go through with it) that I’ll not be keeping stats for as long as the experiment persists. And won’t be mentally tethered to my phone.

Tangentialy related is also the argument I had with my darling daughter last night because I did not have my phone with me when she texted the specifics of what she wanted to eat. I cooked the wrong thing and she refused to eat it and it was so ridiculous. I got so so so angry that she was acting spoiled and ungrateful and she just didn’t get it. Jim said I just needed to make the other thing and remember that she’s sick (one day post vaccine shot and running a fever and in bed all day). So I did. And she didn’t even thank me. Whatever. 

My point is that the people that will be the most affected by this little experiment of mine are those who “expect” things from me or are used to communicating via text. Nobody on FB will miss me because I’m not really on FB anyway. Same for twitter. And since I don’t have a 9 to 5 anymore, there’s nobody who is going to miss me not getting back to them ASAP there.

So today is my day of preparation. Thinking about what it is really going to look like when I pull the trigger on this test. Rolling back to 2006.

Why 2006?

I had to draw a line somewhere, you know, and thinking about what things add value to my life, like that hamster with their brief breaks from the wheel. Eating adds value and so does sleep. It is not a basic need in the pure sense of the word but music is pretty much essential for my daily existence.

If I’m giving up my phone for a week, then I need some other way to get my tunes. I don’t have a working CD player so my original iPod will have to do. I actually looked up the model number and it’s circa 2006. So that’s why. 

No Bluetooth of course so I’ll have to find a wired set of headphones or earbuds. I know I have some somewhere, just have to find them. That part will be easy compared to making my people understand that if they want something from me, they need to ask me in person. How novel. People living in the same house sitting down face to face. 

I think my treadmill time today is past being up. I’m secretly hoping people stay asleep a while longer so I can get more time to myself. We’ll see. 

Next stop.. 2006 and scrapping the stats!

~Miss SugarCookie

2021-02-15 Trying to be Positive Amidst So Much Negativity

As predicted my step streak was broken yesterday. Missed it by a whopping 4K as I sat around all day lamenting my fever and aching muscles. 

Let’s cut to the chase. It’s negative 13 degrees outside right now. The high will be negative 2 which won’t last long before the dip back down to a bone chilling negative 18. That’s a whole lot of negativity people. Why would I fight it? 

My fever and headache yesterday persisted all day and started to dissipate as the evening approached. Still my body felt like it had been through some iron man trial and was sore all over. I even had a nap and was able to sleep in the afternoon. Not sure what time I went to bed, but Jim didn’t wake me this morning (and neither did his alarm) and it was lovely not to have to wake up before the sun for a change. Just wish I didn’t have to also feel like I was on my deathbed so I could actually enjoy it. 

The other reality check this morning is that it’s been like 3 days since I’ve had a shower. As I look at my Monday to-do list, I feel like adding it just so I can cross it off. Sad but true. 

Jim was so sweet taking care of me, which mostly consisted of letting me lay around like a lump while he did his own stuff. He did take me on a Valentine’s Day mini-road trip to pony creek recreation area and all I had to do was sit in the car and enjoy the scenery. 

The lake there had a big hole in it that appeared as though it had steam coming off and several hundred geese huddled in and on the ice surrounding the hole. It was a sight to see and it makes me think of all the poor animals out there huddled together in this desperate cold trying to survive. 

I set our thermostats to 68 and 70 before going to bed. This cold spell is gonna cost a fortune. This is the disadvantage of living in a large house. There’s so much unused space. I wish I could declare a winter weather emergency and make everyone camp out in just a few rooms until it passes to conserve energy. Oh well. 

In other news we are now over halfway through February and I feel so far that I’ve failed with the challenges I’ve issued for myself both for the year and this month. I’m starting over today. More healthy eating habits and more meditation. Feeling like garbage the last couple of days has really made me think about getting back on the heathy bandwagon. 

I’m not sure I’m quite up to adding more cardio yet, as I’m not quite recovered from being sick, but there should not be anything that stops me from meditation (or eating healthier). 

In other news we have a car stranded at Jim’s office that will not start and that means I get to play taxi a little bit today if I want to hit the grocery store and start getting my act together for the week. It’s Presidents’ Day and apparently that’s a “no school” holiday, but I still have to pick my son up from his dads house. I think with this cold they would have called school off anyhow. They can’t run busses and have kids standing outside in this frozen tundra!

None of this is news. None of this is noteworthy. I want to try and be positive but there’s not a lot more on my brain today besides getting that shower and staying warm. Guess that means it’s time to switch to reading.

Until next time, 

~Miss SugarCookie