Adjusted Reality

“Reality can be beaten with enough imagination.” – Mark Twain

10 years and 5 top tips for healthy new years resolutions

Ten years is a really long time.  I keep saying “it’s about a third of my life” because I still THINK I’m about 30, but I’m getting closer to it being a fourth.  Still a long time, regardless.

2007-1

I don’t enjoy dredging this picture up every January but it proves a point.

Anyhoo, about ten years ago, I barely fit into size 24 jeans.  Walking around my apartment complex or across my tiny work campus was a WORKOUT.  I drove the mile to work because “I would get sweaty” or “there’s a hill”.  A marathon was something you did watching a lot of a TV show.  A triathlon was eating pizza, drinking whiskey, and working or playing games at the same time.

While I was proud of my work accomplishments, I had given up on the rest of my life.  I figured that I wasn’t young anymore, so I had missed my opportunity to do something fun for fitness like I did as a kid.  Hello, I was in my MID TWENTIES.  Who thinks that?  I thought if I wanted to lose weight I needed to do the elliptical (ho hum) and lift weights (bleh) and eat low carb (HATE).   I would stick to this stuff for a little bit, then I’d get bored and have no overlying goal besides wanting to hate myself a little less, and get frustrated and quit.

However, a decade ago my New Years resolution was to lose weight, and it actually stuck!  I’m down a small human from where I was ten years ago and I’m fit, active, and competitive (sometimes) in triathlons.  However, there are days, weeks, and months where I’ve felt like an utter failure at it.  I’ve gained weight back.  I’ve let myself get so far off the strength training wagon I’ve become weak, imbalanced, and injured.  To be a little nerdy and quote Alfred from Batman, “Why do we fall?  So we can learn to pick ourselves up.”  I’ve learned that the key is lifting yourself up over and over and over.

Change is uncomfortable, and you’ll occasionally revert back to comfort and then feel frustrated about it.  You’ll have a bad day at work and scarf down a burger and a beer and feel a bunch of guilt about how weak you are.  You’ll get sick or busy and get out of the workout habit and berate yourself for not sticking to it.  The scale will, for NO GOOD REASON, go up one week and you’ll want to cry and say FUCK IT, my best isn’t good enough, I guess I deserve to be fat now.  I have done ALL THIS AND MORE and yet, still, here I am.

Odds are, you have a health or fitness related goal for 2017.  Since it’s coming up to that pivotal time where you’re either going to quit when the going gets tough or persevere, here’s my 5 top tips for actually succeeding with a health/fitness related New Years resolution.

jan9-2

Instead of being too busy to work out because you have all the errands, don’t drive there – get a cheapo commuter bike and some storage (my bike was 200$, my storage cost less than 100$, bike adventures instead of sitting in traffic – priceless).

1. Work the goals around your life, not your life around the goals.  Are you not a morning person?  I’m not either.  Setting a goal to wake up at 5am to work out every day is PROBABLY not the best first step.  Try finding 30 minutes a few times a week that makes sense for you.  Use your lunch break.  Take 30 minutes out of your social media or TV time.  Stop at the gym on the way home from work.  If you have trouble getting out of the house, find workouts you can do inside (treadmill, trainer, videos, active video games).  Maybe it IS the mornings, but if it’s not, don’t force it.  Find the time you are MOST likely to work out and do that.

2. Have lofty goals but take realistic steps.  Want to lose 100 lbs?  Awesome.  Set that really scary number aside and concentrate on losing 5 lbs this month.  Or better yet, use process goals, like tracking your food and steps and eating 500 calories less than you burn daily as measured by fitbit.  You can’t lose weight just by wanting it really hard, you have to go through a process to do it.  I know – I tried for MANY YEARS to just want to lose weight as if it was magic.  It may be a little mystifying, but I guarantee you, the more you quantify your actions, the more success you’ll have.

3. Have an ultimate (quantifiable) goal.  Wanting to be skinny or get fitter is admirable, but hard to quantify.  What’s your motivation for wanting it?  Do you want to fit into a pair of jeans?  Do you want to be able to play soccer with your kids?  Do you want to run your first 5k?  Once you identify this, figure out those incremental steps to get there and make a plan and set a date.  As they say, a goal without a deadline is just a dream.  For the 5k example, you may say you’re going to follow the Couch25k program (giving yourself a few extra weeks just in case) and sign yourself up for a 5k in 3 months.  This means you can’t just say “someday”… someday is in 12 weeks – get to it!

4. Be gentle with yourself if you falter.  Progress is not linear.  We are human.  The aforementioned bad day burger and beer, missing workouts, and scale being a fuckwit WILL happen.  Let me shout this one.  IT IS NOT INDICATIVE OF YOU BEING A WORTHLESS HUMAN BEING.  However, why do we fall (because we all fall)?  To learn how to pick ourselves up again.  After the burger and beer day, wake up in the morning and eat a healthy breakfast and go sweat a little.  After missing a week of working out, get back to it.  If the scale is not cooperating, keep trying, because the other option is giving up and I guarantee you, this is not a good alternative.  Sometimes we vacation off the wagon, and that’s fine, but we should live ON it.

5. Celebrate when you succeed.  Did you lose 15 lbs and your jeans are loose?  Fuck yeah!  Go buy yourself a new pair that fits and looks good.  Even if you’re not at your goal weight.  Even if you have to go to the thrift store to do it.  Just because you are not at your vision of perfect yet doesn’t mean you shouldn’t celebrate the little steps along the way.  Progress should be should be met with a hearty fist bump, not a sigh about how far you have left to go.

In ten years, some things have not changed.

sept19-1

Yep, this is still a thing…

Sometimes I’ll eat like an ass just like before.  I love me some french fries.  I still have pizza and whiskey nights in my life.

I still hate the elliptical.  And I constantly fall off and restart on the weights bandwagon.

Right now I’m cranky about barely fitting into some of my jeans.

However, when I eat like an ass, 99% of the time it’s because I’ve just finished a super long workout and I can justify the calories.  I may hate the elliptical, but I love to swim, bike, and run.  And the jeans I’m cranky about?  They’re half the size (or less) than in 2007.

So, there are some things that HAVE changed.  And while 2007 me and 2017 me are very different people, it was through very gradual evolution every step of the way.  2007 me would have balked at my current workout schedule and many other things that are just part of my normal life now.  But 2007 me DID find it acceptable to do 20-30 mins cardio and 15 minutes of light weights three times a week, and track my calories.  And then it evolved from there.

If 2007 me could do it, 2017 you TOTALLY can.

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In and out of the big tired hole – 14 weeks to go

By the middle of week I got into a big tired pit of despair.  But I’m doing much better now.

Jan16-1

#mfw I haven’t slept through the night in 4 days.  Thank goodness this was the morning after the last time I woke up at 3am… ><

It makes sense.  It’s been two weeks of throwing myself in the deep end of Ironman training.  There was no gradual ramp up this time.  I spent two months of doing whatever the eff I wanted (some week’s 10 hours, some 4, and mostly exploring on my bike), and then all of a sudden it was schedules and 11+ hours a week and having to hit numbers and putting some sort of effort into things and it’s been a shock.

Also, the mold and cedar are conspiring against me and hitting me hard, right where it hurts.  We’ve had a week of BEAUTIFUL weather, perfect for playing outside, and the air has been poisonous.  It hurts my soul.  Also, for the first half of the week (until Thursday night), I woke up around 3am unable to go back to sleep for an hour or two, which is SO not normal for me.  I’ve read most of a book series, which is great, but on this volume of training 6-7 hours per night is not even remotely enough.

The good news is January is half over, and after I cross the line of 3M on Sunday, I’ll have arrived at my first rest week.  14 days down.  7 days of training left to go until rest week.  14 weeks left total until race day.

If Einstein is correct and the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over, I’m doing things pretty sanely (and I’m sticking with that story, yup!).  My schedule’s all switched up and it’s not like “yup, it’s Saturday I’m always going to be doing X thing I’ve been doing every other cycle/year”.   I’m not taking days off, I’m pushing active recovery with easy spins and swims to get more volume and with great care, it seems to be working.  I am actually finally for reals being diligent about stretching, rolling, and using the puffy boots for recovery, like a good triathlete.

Things will probably change a little more towards the traditional when the air stops trying to kill me, but for right now, I’m enjoying the novelty of difference.

Jan16-2

I <3 night swimming even if my face doesn’t show it.  Especially an hour of it.

Last week:

  • Runs: 6.25 in 73 mins (long run cut in half), 1 mile off the bike in 10:32.
  • Bikes: 81 mins cycle class with zone 2/3 constant cadence changes, 4.5 hours long trainer, 30 mins ridden every other day
  • Swims: 1500m gentle speedwork, 3000m long swim
  • Weights: 2 dozen sets
  • Stretched, rolled, or legs every night

I hit everything else I wanted EXCEPT I cut the run miles in half and only did a mile of speedwork (though off a 4.5 hour bike I think it should count at least triple).  Ah well.  January is about the bike first and foremost.  Total training was 12 hours.

This week’s goals:

  • Runs: 3M half marathon, 1 hour easy
  • Bikes: cycle class, 5 hour trainer, 30 mins easy spin every other day
  • Swims: 1500m speedwork, 3250m long swim
  • Weights: 2 sessions, since its a race week, definitely not heavy lifting after mid-week
  • Stretch, roll, or legs every night

Specifically, my goals for 3M are a little more subdued than I expected when I signed up.  I figured I’d have a little more run volume under my belt and taper at least a little for it (nope and nope).  I am going to show up and see what happens, but if my legs don’t have an effort, I’ll just treat it like a supported long run.  I’m open to magic pixie dust, of course, but I’m also going to be realistic.  Priority #1 to be able to wake up and train the next day.  That probably means flirting with a personal worst here.  And that’s TOTALLY ok.

Jan16-3

Life lately – food, bike, trying to look less like a scrub since I cleaned out my closet and actually know what fits…

As for all the other things I’m tracking:

Last week I did Chapter 11 for my triathlon coaching class. This week I’ll do Chapter 12.  Only 4 more weeks to go after this one.  If I keep up with my progress, I’ll be certified by my birthday!

As a bonus, I also spent a little time updating this site (added links to FB, Pintrest, and G+, and updated my race results), got rid of a bunch of people I’m no longer interested in following on twitter, and added some interesting health/fitness/triathlon folks.  This week, I want to continue this trend to shift my feeds over to awesome active adventurey stuff.  Are you reading this?  Do you participate on a social media I have linked above?  Let’s connect!  Use the links up there or drop your name below in a comment and I’ll find you.

Last week I tracked my calories for 2134 average each day with -700 deficit.  My ratios were 111g protein, 63g fat, 32g fiber, and 243g carbs per day.  I didn’t do too badly, but I had slightly better ratios last week (-50 calorie deficit more per day, less fat, more carbs), so I’ll try to aim more that way.

Last week, my average weight was 188.0.  I don’t have a comparison yet of how much I’m losing per week (I will by next Monday), but I started the week off at 188.5lbs which is about 1 lb down from what I started last week.  However slow it’s going is fine because I can’t do anything further at this volume of training. 8lbs to go back to 70.3 race weight!

Last week I drank 13 beers (I found these and are counting them as “beer” as well).  I am going to stick with it through January, but I just really don’t like beer that much, it’s a LOT of calories compared to other alcohol, and miss a good whiskey on the rocks or glass of red wine.  However, I know this is necessary so I’m not talking about missing a good BOTTLE of whiskey/red wine, and I can already feel less alcohol affecting me more.  Shrink little tolerance, shrink away, become moral again instead of superhuman!

My sleep sucked last week.  It’s really not even my fault.  When allergies wake me up in the middle of the night, I wake up later, so I have more to do later at night, finishing my workouts and dinner in the 9-10pm range, so I don’t go to sleep until 11, and then it happens again.  This cycle actually made me not ride long Friday night, sleep almost TWELVE hours, and while I was cranky about plans changing, I felt like a new person at 9:30am on Saturday morning.  I so needed it.  I was able to start today off with a morning spin so I have high hopes it will be better this week.

Last week’s to do was clean out the cars and put inside Christmas away.  Christmas has left the building, but instead of the cars, we decided to make some progress on the office yesterday.  We’ve got about 90% of like six years of shredding done, and the front half of the office is cleaned out and no longer is a maze of boxes.  It was a moment of clarity when we started working on it that I realized we CAN INDEED do it a little at a time and maybe even finish it before the Ironman, it doesn’t have to be done in one weekend.  We just have to keep at it.  Small steps to accomplish an intimidating task.  DUH.

And just keep at it, I shall. Just about 6 days until rest week starts.  About 11 more workouts.  About 144 more hours.  I can do eeeet!

Lifetime Indoor Tri – Brush that rust of your shoulder

We found out a buddy of ours was doing his first triathlon at the Lifetime Indoor Tri, so we reswizzled our plans and decided to end our first week back with a good solid effort.

jan10-1

Team kit = reimbursement for the race. 🙂

There was zero taper for this, in fact, I was pretty darn wiped from over 10 hours before I even woke up Sunday morning.  I wasn’t going into this as a “this is a test of my athlete worth” mindset at all.  This was a hard effort to kick off IM training and to support a friend, that’s it that’s all.

It’s a good thing because I bungled a lot of the setup and things and went into both the swim and the bike frazzled.  But overall, I’m pretty happy with the day.

It started with sleeping in a *little* longer than I had hoped (I was up really late on Friday and my sleep schedule was a little wonkified).  We got there with enough time but I farted around too much in the locker room, I guess, because I got to the pool and got rushed to a lane and was still putting in my earplugs with 20 seconds to go.

I didn’t get my garmin started properly, and I was stuck with whatever music popped on my swimp3 player (and it was EVERY SLOW SONG from the Moulin Rouge soundtrack).  Zliten and I were sharing a lane and he started pulling away from me, but I know I go through 3 stages on a hard swim:

  • 0-2 mins – let’s do this
  • 2-5 mins, I suck at swimming and I want to throw my goggles
  • 5+ minutes – ok, hit my stride and I can do this

This was no exception, and at 5 minutes my form came back and I felt less like a flailing fish, and I got half a lap ahead by the end.  Sadly, I ended up at 19 laps, which if it was a 25m pool, is pretty darn slow for me, especially at a *effort* – for example, yesterday, I swam 1:50/100m over 30 mins and I wasn’t close to redlining like I was Sunday.  Ah well, we’ll never know if it was me or the pool. 🙂

Swim: 10/32 – 40 points

This time, I remembered how hard it was to put on a sports bra while wet, so I wore it under my swim suit.  That was a good decision.  I actually got out before Zliten but I waited for him and we walked up together and they were like OK, get your bikes set up go go go go and I did.

I got going and tried to start up my phone with my kick ass turkey trot playlist… and since I haven’t used it since then, for the life of me, I couldn’t find the music app.  I asked Zliten but he didn’t remember either.  I spent the first 5 minutes cycling looking for my playlist and cursing (sorry random guy next to me), until I finally gave up and listened to Spotify.  I had to keep hunting and pecking for songs on my Most Played playlist.  I listened to Rise twice, Dirt off your Shoulder three times, Bad Habit twice… but it worked better than nothing.

As a product of being a little angry and also all the bike training lately, I was able to push a decent amount of watts and ended the 30 minutes with 10.4 miles.  I figured there was NO WAY I beat Zliten but he only got 9.1.  I actually went back and looked at 2015’s results and I would have been 1st place female overall by far with that bike so I’m pretty stoked.  Oddly enough, if you focus on something, you get decent at it.  Who knew?

Bike: 1/32 – 51 points

We had a little break getting set up on the treadmills and Zliten helped me find my playlist.  Whew.  I was honestly looking forward to this part the least.  If I’ve neglected something the most, it’s been run speed.  My plan was to start at 6.0 and go from there.  I started… and 6.0 was actually tough.  Ugh.  And then my playlist failed after one song.  Let this be a reminder to check your equipment before every race!

I’m might have had a little boost if I wouldn’t have had to expend the mental energy dealing with my music, but let’s face facts.  Last week, I’ve did a 11 mile run and an almost 4 hour TT bike ride, my longest swim in a while, plus a bunch of other stuff.  My run game is not especially strong right now.  I hung on and ended with 2.08 miles in 20 minutes (9:36 pace), and my heart rate was at 175-180 which is my redline heart rate, so I did all I could.

Run: 9/32 – 32 points

It was a solid hour of sprint triathloning, and great way to kick off tri training, and the start of a great day.  I came home, and ate all the things, and actually even passed the heck out for an hour after stretching and rolling.  Appropriately enough, I dreamed about biking.

And… after waiting for 3 days for results – I got 3rd overall!  I’m pretty excited about that, and it proves that the bike matters the most. 🙂

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This month, this week, right now.

There’s really no getting around it, January is a great time to reset your goals and figure out who you want to be.  It’s not that other times of the year are BAD, but look at it this way:

jan9-1

This is January kind of summed up in one picture.

  • We’ve come off a few days/weeks/months of debauchery.  We have had our proverbial mardi gras, and we’re actually physically and mentally ready for lent.
  • Everyone is doing it.  It’s fun to be surrounded with a bunch of positive people who are actually motivated and working towards bettering themselves – even if it’s just for the 2-3 weeks that the average resolution lasts.
  • It’s no secret that I think January is the worst month, but come on, you have to agree.  There are no super fun holidays, the outdoors are out to kill us in one way or another (cold or allergies), it’s dark all the time, and it’s just lame.  You have to bring your OWN positivity to January if you want to be happy.

Even though I don’t think it’s the only time for a fresh start, it’s a perfect time for one.  So, here’s my month, my week, and my right nows.  Let’s start broad and work our way down.

This month:

jan9-5

A new word that’s in my vocabulary this month: swim pajamas (ie, clothes to change into after swimming at night so I don’t have to put real ones on)

  • Make progress in my triathlon coaching class.  I’d like to finish this and pass the test by my birthday (or at least my birthday month), so get through enough class to adhere to that timeline.
  • Create a training plan for this month and follow it.  Whatever, whenever sessions time is over, it’s time to be more specific and more precise.
  • No wine, champagne, or alcohol.  Beer is allowed in reasonable quantities that fit within my calorie range.  Even though I’m mostly on the 0 level of nicotine e-cig – so it’s mostly hand-to-mouth habit and a little flavor at this point – don’t do that as stress relief or appetite relief at night.
  • 30 minutes of cycling per day.  Instead of run streaking, I’m bike streaking this year.  The benefits I can see so far are: more bike volume, more time on my TT bike even if it’s just in 30 minute increments, 30 mins is doable in the AM without a crazy alarm but also establishes a habit, and it’s easy to do inside because the air is trying to kill me.
  • Eat good food, mostly, and track it.  I haven’t gone off the deep end this year and threw out all the sweets and chips or said 0 sugar for the month or anything.  I just want to go back to what I know works for me and feels good.
    • Track all the food.  Weigh every day starting January 9th (giving myself one week of eating like a human before I have to face the scale).  I WANT METRICS.
    • 5 servings MINIMUM of fruits and veggies per day.
    • Aim for -500 to -1000 calories according to fitbit as hunger dictates (some days, I had zero problems with -1000, some days,  -500 was a stretch).
    • 20-30g protein per meal, smaller amounts in snacks to equal about 100g per day.  40-60g fat, incorporating plant sources like nuts.  25g fiber.  Carbs vary per activity level.
  • Racing  – apparently we have the itch to go do all the things, because we’re committed to three in the next month or so.  All of it is totally great and kosher to compliment IM training, so I’m all for it!

This week:

jan8-4

This week I reminded myself that you get beans and rice and chicken and tortillas after 11 miles on the treadmill.

Enough of that.  A little overwhelming, right?  Let’s break it up into just the weeklies…

Last week I hit about 90% of the training I planned:

  • 30 mins of cycling per day – 100% done!
  • 1 longer swim (40+ mins) – 100% done! (2050m in 41:30)
  • 1 longer run (10+ miles) – 100% done (11 miles in 1:59:40)
  • cycle class and a long trainer ride (3-4 hours) 100% done!  3:45 for 80 miles on the trainer
  • Lifetime Indoor Triathlon (10 min swim, 30 min bike, 20 min run) – 100% done! (still waiting on results)
  • 2 weights sessions – 50% – missed one day because my body was worn out
  • Stretching, rolling, or massage legs every night – 85% – missed one day

This week, I plan to do (this should look fairly similar):

  • 30 mins of cycling per day
  • 1 lunch swim and 1 longer swim (50 mins)
  • 1 gentle speedwork session 3-6 miles and  1 longer run (12+ miles)
  • cycle class and a long TT trainer
  • 2 weights sessions
  • stretching, rolling, or massage legs every night

Last week I did Chapter 10 for my triathlon class.  This week I will do Chapter 11.

Last week I tracked my calories for 2200 average each day with -750 deficit.  My ratios were 115g protein, 55g fat, 32g fiber, and 278g carbs per day.  This week I will continue to do the same thing.  While I’d *like* to adhere to that -1000 more strictly, it’s training suicide to not eat when I’m hungry.

Last week I did not weigh myself.  This week, I started the week at 189.4, and I need to lose 9 lbs to get to where I was last season (the good news is EVERYTHING is working against me today, so that number should come down organically this week).  This is goal post #1 for weight loss, I’ll reset again once I get there.

Last week I drank 11 beers.  This week I’ll aim to do the same or less.

Last week, I got decent sleep, but my schedule is still off from vacation so it was later than I’d like and not a full 8 hours every night.  The goal this week is to be asleep by 11pm every weeknight and get 8 hours every night (baby steps).

Last week’s to do was get an appointment for the eye doctor and take down outside lights.  We did both and the appointments are on 1/27.  This week’s to do is to clean out the cars and take down our tree (I know, I know, I just *couldn’t* this weekend, it was entirely too sad).

Right now:

jan9-3

I’ll treasure any of these #goplayoutside days I get in January and be happy instead of pissed off so many of them are inside.

Still a little too big picture?  Well, this is what I’m doing right now to accomplish those goals:

  • Stay the #^$@ off facebook.  I made the conscious choice to log on and dork for a bit at home while watching TV last week, and I found myself unrelaxed, unproductive, and not having moved from the couch an hour and a half later.  Bad juju.
  • #goplayinside – Rather than being depressed about it, I’m accepting that pretty much all workouts will be indoors for January and any sessions I get outdoors are a total bonus. This is where I’m suffering right now, and this is ok.  I’ll appreciate playing outside more once I can.
  • I’m going to count down the days until recovery week just like I count down the seconds on a difficult bike interval.  Since I’m pushing the volume on the weeks leading up to it, I’m making sure they are pretty dang mellow.  I am currently 14 days from recovery week.  Tomorrow I’ll be 13.  And once that’s done, I’ll have block #1 of 3.5 under my belt.
  • Focus on consistency.  Aristotle is so right – we are what we repeatedly do.  Patience, persistence, and good habits.

And with that, I’m off to kick Monday’s ass!  Have a great week everyone!

What I did on my winter vacation

Between December 7th at 6pm and January 3rd at 9am, I was on a (saving my PTO pennies, company funded) sabbatical of sorts.  Obviously, the first week was a little more exciting than the rest, but I was still left with 18 days when I stepped off the plane back to little ol’ Austin.

jan3-4

I would like to say I figured out how to be bored, but I’m not sure if that’s possible for me.  At no point did I crave work or routine for the sake of having something to do, because I have this MASSIVE backlog of one-off things I’d like to accomplish.  And then there’s the things I like to do repeatedly (run, bike, swim, read, play games, etc).  However, I will say that I’m pretty excited to be eating healthier food and tracking, because I’m fairly sure there’s a subcutaneous water balloon in my stomach.  That’s the ONLY explanation.

What I did learn:

dec29-1

25 miles and 6 hours of errands around town. 

There’s just almost nowhere I can’t go on my cruiser bike, and not having company is no excuse.  I biked to some kinda sketchtastic areas in rush hour and never felt unsafe or unable to handle myself.  Cheating and using sidewalks in places where traffic is stupid is just sometimes how I’ll have to roll.  And that makes all the difference between me riding bikes and not riding bikes in some cases.

I figured out a completely productive way to procrastinate.  I do really well alternating between passive and active things.  For example, I was able to alternate sets of the Oiselle dozen and studying for my triathlon coaching class (and I’m more than halfway done, wheeee!).  Really, doing anything on my computer and then alternating with doing a quick chore worked out well.  However, I need to come to a stopping place with the brain work before I do the other thing.  When I get interrupted in the middle of it, my productivity gets worse.

jan3-1

Running into the sunset happened at least twice though…

I put together a lot less running miles than expected (just a little over 20 in the 2 weeks).  The weather was just so much warmer than normal and I was much more motivated to go on bike adventures than running ones.  Am I going to pay for that going into IM training?  Possibly.  But we’ll cross that bridge when I come to it.

jan3-5

Hello beautifuls…

Food, glorious food!  We thought about going out to dinner Monday night, because it was the last day of vacation, but couldn’t think of anything we wanted besides a nice home cooked meal of mahi, rice, and veggies.  I made some oatmeal muffins (above) for no-fuss breakfasts over break.  I think we hit up pizza like 3 times and I perfected my spaghetti sauce recipe (needs FRESH garlic and olive oil).  I hit my favorite Vietnamese place twice, I found my new favorite Italian sandwich, tried out a new salad place, and a new kebap place (both, sadly, I like my old places better, but you have to try new things).  And, December means grilling weather in Texas, so that happened!

jan3-3

75 degrees on Christmas eve?  Um, yeah, we’re going on a holiday light ride.

We got Christmas as fuck up in here.  While the weather outside was delightful (I spent it in a tank top), we got in the mood with Christmas light rides with friends, all the silly little presents for each other (and some not so silly, hello new watch buddy), and our traditional Din Ho dinner with the neighbors on the Eve and lasagna with the family on the day of.  I still can’t quite bring myself to take the decorations down.  Soon.

I spent at least one day doing absolutely nothing productive and it was totally wonderful.  And yes, I had to schedule it.

And now we’re to January, which is the worst month ever, but we’ll get through it together, right?  I’m hoping to manage my vacation time a little better next year, but if not, I can’t deny that another December fun month doesn’t sound appealing…

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