Saturday, March 31, 2012

A More Pressing Incentive

Let's talk about "No Brainers" for a moment. I needed incentive to do a little more walking, and really, I didn't have to do anything more than to look out to the street outside my house. There, my gas guzzling SUV sits hungry for another $100.00 fill-up, which by the way, won't even fill it up.  Having four kids, and the fact that we go to Yosemite every other year or so (luggage for six), we can't exactly go out and get a Smart Car. Unfortunately, even though there are grocery stores within walking distance (sort of) I'd have to have a rickshaw or something in order to get all the food back to my house. There are, however a number of errands that I can walk to, and let me tell ya', if gas prices don't improve, I'm going to be walking a LOT more. The problem that arises for me, is the matter of time. It is much faster to jump in the car for that one little item I need at the store, and in some cases I really don't have much choice. I have decided, however, that I am going to make more of an effort, when I do have the time (and reasonable energy), to walk wherever I need to go. It will save us money, and it won't seem so much like "exercise". Sometimes you have to fool yourself. If I tell myself I'm walking to get exercise, it's easier to say that I don't really feel like exercising today. If I tell myself that I'm saving gas money, then I really have no excuse. I'd rather know that this week I can actually pay all the bills. Funny how that works. Hopefully, if some day the gas prices (by some miracle) do go down, I'll be so used to walking places, it will just be a happy habit. One can hope. Until later friends...

Caren E. Salas

photo by William Salas

Wednesday, March 28, 2012


Well, the aforementioned allergy attack from hell ended up giving me laryngitis. That was almost a week ago. I think the last time I wrote, I was feeling the beginnings of it, but passed it off as just being a little hoarse. When "hoarse" turned into squeak, and then squeak into barely a whisper, I knew it wasn't good. I did see a doctor who said it could be a virus, but she didn't really see any other signs that it was, and didn't see any signs of it being anything more serious. Good news, she did give me something for my cough, which is primarily at night, so I can sleep. My body apparently feels the need to do some last ditch drainage about mid morning that throws me into a violent coughing fit, but then I'm pretty much done. I'm still moving slowly, but I'm moving and that is good. The National MS Society's current slogan is simply "Move It". I need to needlepoint that onto a pillow and sleep with it every night. (If I had ANY idea how to do that, or, for that matter, the time...)
So...getting to the point. What made me actually leave my house and take a nice, fairly long walk? Was it that instead of putting jeans on to take my kids to school this morning, I put on sweat pants? Well, that might have helped a little, but that's not it. Was it a deeply rooted NEED to finally do something healthy?? No. What got me going this morning stuff.
My daughter works at the Disney Store, and told me, that in celebration of their 25th anniversary, the store was giving out free mouse ears to the first 250 guests. Who wouldn't want that? So, since I can barely afford to drive my gas guzzling monster of a car down the street, I decided to walk to the mall. Not really far, but farther than my norm. Of course they ran out right before I got there, but I didn't regret going. Hey, I did still get a button.  :) At the very least, it got me moving. I think my dog was a little disappointed that he didn't get to go, but I did go in the backyard to play fetch with him when I got home. He ran after it twice...and figured that was enough exercise for the day. Whatcha' gonna' do? He's an old guy.
Until later...

Caren E. Salas


Saturday, March 24, 2012

Day...oh heck, I don't know anymore.

I've decided to give up on trying to keep track of how many days I've been on my little journey toward a new, healthy me, especially considering I'm hoping it will be a lifelong goal.  Sorry, it's been a few days since I wrote anything, but I haven't been feeling well. It's mostly due from lack of sleep, but also because, for whatever reason, my allergies have decided to attack me with a vengeance normally reserved for serial killers and child molesters, neither of which, you may be relieved to know, I am.  Unfortunately, because I am on so many medications, I tend to avoid any extra meds that might interact or counteract with those. (Speaking of which I also found out this week that  some of my recent health issues were actually being caused by my meds which, thankfully, are being adjusted.)
I've been trying to at least walk a bit, and well, aside from last weekend, stay on my healthy diet.  Today I do plan to take my rugrat for a walk. Poor little guy, he's probably got cabin fever because I haven't taken him out all week. I think it's a fair guess that if I'm feeling cooped up, he must be too. So off I go. Hopefully I can get back in the saddle, and get my exercise "program" back on a regular schedule.  Wish me luck. It's hard to get healthy when you're sick all the time. Dang! I guess I have to just keep trying and believing that (wait for it...)
Tomorrow will be a better day.

Caren E. Salas


Monday, March 19, 2012

Day 48 - Wish I Could Say...

I wish I could say that I haven't written because I've been busy working out or having some adventure, but no. I know what you all are thinking, and sadly, you are correct. I have totally fallen off the health mobile. It's been a busy and rough last few days. We had a party for St. Patrick's Day which was fun, but messed up my entire schedule and eating plan. If I could count running around to six different stores for various supplies as exercise, then I'd be in business, but somehow, I'm thinking...not.
So here it is Monday, and I'm a little bit down. It's partially because I haven't really gotten enough sleep, or for that matter slept well when I did. It's partially because I ate and drank way too much (but no I wasn't drunk or anything, just not exactly drinking "light" beer.)  And partially, I'm just frustrated with all the stuff I need to do and the lack of time and energy to do it. Same ol', same ol'.  I did take my little dog to "Dog Beach" yesterday, so I got a little bit of a workout getting in and out of there, and playing with him. Today, if I can go for a walk with him I will at least feel like I've accomplished something.  Meanwhile, I have some minor emergencies to deal with and common pains to contend with.  I think I can honestly say, tomorrow will be a better day. It has to be.

Caren E. Salas

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Day 43 - Temptation

 Okay, so my husband sends me out to buy donuts this morning. Donuts! Really? He never gets donuts. He wanted to get them for his staff at work, which was a nice thought, but torture for me. Here, I'm trying to eat more healthy, and out of the blue...donuts. He let the kids have one each and I declined but I did snag a small bite from my daughter's.
It's bad enough that every store is full of Easter candy! Those little marshmallow Peeps...I love those. If I could just have one, it might be okay, but they're like Lay's Potato Chips. Can you really have just one Peep? So here I am trying not to buy that stuff, and yet it still finds its way into the house!! Augh!
My plan is to step away from the sweets, and keep stepping. I need to go for more walks or jogs or bike rides and get out of the house. I can't go to the mall, because well - that's junk food heaven. I need to go to a park or something. Yesterday worked out well because I had to get the oil changed in my car, so I dropped it off and walked home. Then later I had to walk back to get it. I walked briskly, partly because I wanted it to be exercise and partly because I didn't want to be run over by one of the crazy people zooming through the parking lot near the Goodyear place. Survival of the fitness.
Yesterday was okay. Today wasn't great. Tomorrow will be better. Until then...
Caren E. Salas


Sunday, March 11, 2012

Day 40 - Time Changes...Make me crazy(er)

Yippee! I just love losing an hour of sleep. Wasn't I just writing about this?  As if I am not sleep deprived already, now they're going to take another hour? I do appreciate the longer days and all, but really?  It's amazing how much I'm thrown by one little hour. It means getting up early, that's bad all by itself. The longer days for some reason also throw off my meal planning. I don't realize that it's later in the evening, because it's still so light out.  By the time I realize what time it is, I should have started dinner two hours earlier! My day goes by so fast sometimes I think it's turbo charged, and it's really unfair that I didn't get a little Nitro Booster or something to go with it.

This week especially is going to be a challenge, but by golly, I think I can do it. Of course I may have to set alarms on my phone or in my house to constantly remind me of the time, and I may have to put post-its everywhere to keep me on track, but what the heck? No one said it would be easy.  I'd love to say my favorite phrase about tomorrow, but I'm kind of worried I might jinx myself or something, so how about we just see how it goes?  Until later, friends!

Caren E. Salas

Photo by William Salas

Saturday, March 10, 2012

Day 39 - Too Many Late Nights

"Early to bed, early to rise..."
Clearly Benjamin Franklin wasn't a mom. I got the "early to rise" part down (even if not by choice), but the "early to bed" part is always a challenge. There are just not enough hours in the day to get everything done. I know I should be getting not only the average person's healthy amount of sleep, but, according to my doctor, even more. The problem is I haven't quite figured out how that's going to happen, and lack of sleep in not good when you are trying to get into better shape.  I find myself having a hard time being motivated when I'm tired. Well, duh, right?
I just love that commercial for the sleep aids that say "if you find yourself walking, eating or driving while asleep, contact your doctor..." Wow. Sounds like my life every day.
I think what I need to do is to have dinner earlier. This would mean eating earlier (of course) but also the clean up would be earlier. Then I could at least have a little time in the evening if not to sleep, at least to relax.
I was able to stretch a little today, and so far I seem to be holding onto those 2 pounds I lost and I think I may have lost one more, hopefully that will stay off too. Tired today, but tomorrow will be better. No, really. Tomorrow will be a better day.

Caren E. Salas

Friday, March 9, 2012

Day 38 - Best Laid Plans

"The best laid plans of mice and me(n) often go awry..." Of Mice and Men, John Steinbeck.

Remember I said I needed to make a plan for this week? What was I thinking? Seriously. I should know by now, being a strong believer in "Murphy's Law", that everything that can go wrong, will, and guaranteed, everything will take longer than you think it will.  This was my week. Granted, a few things did go very right, and thankfully I actually got most of the stuff I needed to done, so far anyway. There's still tomorrow to mess up. I have done a little stretching, a little walking, and have tried not to be sucked into the candy aisle at the 99 Cent Store. I do want to shoot every cute little Girl Scout smiling at me from every grocery store entrance. Nooooo! Leave me alone! I have a squirt gun and I'm not afraid to use it!! So many temptations, so many reasons I can't exercise, so many obstacles to overcome on my way to being healthy. 
So...what to do? Slowly I have been adding different disciplines into my life. I eat better food, I drink water more than...other things. I exercise, maybe not daily, but regularly. My thought now is that I need to really think about those distractions that keep me from doing things I computer time. Don't get me wrong. This whole cyber world is fabulous, but it's so easy sometimes to spend more time than I need to. Next thing I know time has passed and nothing productive has been completed.  When I'm writing or even reading something worthwhile, that's okay, but sometimes I feel like I need to limit the time I spend at one time. (By the way, I'm hoping you all think my writing is worthwhile, because you are not allowed to stop reading my stuff) Anyway, speaking of time, I should be sleeping,  truth be said. So until later...
Good Night.

Caren E. Salas 

photo: (pinky_brain.jpg)

Monday, March 5, 2012

Day 35 - Another crazy week...

Well, as I look at my datebook, I can see lots of obstacles in front of me, I have three doctor/therapy visits for me, one for my son and another for my daughter. On Friday, I've promised to make a long overdue trip to my mom and dad's house.  Now this would be enough to make me a little crazy on top of the taxi service I provide in the afternoon, but then add on the usual household chores and paying the bills (also...close to overdue).  So when to fit I have no idea. I really need some sort of plan. I think before I do anything else I should write out a quick weekly plan so I can clearly see where I have to be and when. Then, I can see where the holes are - there must be a few anyway. Otherwise I'm just going to have to embarrass my kids and dance around the kitchen while I'm cooking dinner. Hmm, that might be fun anyway...haha. Onward and into the week. I'm going to attack it with the precision of a seasoned shopper.
Post it, Plan it, Do it, Live it. Rah Rah Rah.

Caren E. Salas

Saturday, March 3, 2012

Day 33 - Motivation

Motivation is a complicated thing. For example: I can be mentally motivated to do something, but physically? Not so much. Or, I can be motivated in every way, but still not have the time to act on it. Life happens, schedules change, things usually don't go the way I think they're going to. Sometimes I feel like I need my own cheer-leading squad around all the time telling me "You can do it! You can! You can!" Unfortunately, we don't live in a huge house and I'm sure things would get a bit crowded.  So for lack of an encouragement team, I find that I have to motivate myself. Actually, thinking about it, I can have all kinds of people rooting for me, but if I don't believe I can do something, it's not going to happen. I have to make up my mind that I will achieve my goal, whatever that may be, in the face of obstacles, despite rejections or set-backs.
Easier said than done, right? Days pass and I don't get a chance to workout for whatever reason, or I slip and eat something not quite as healthy... (okay, I didn't really "slip", I did it on purpose, but who can turn down "In n Out"?) and I find myself feeling discouraged. I just have to kick myself a little, keep on trying, and keep on telling myself (you know what's coming) tomorrow will be a better day.

Caren E. Salas


Friday, March 2, 2012

Day 32 - Well, You're Getting Older...

Recently, I injured my knee. It felt like it took forever to start feeling better so I asked my doctor about it. She answered, "Well, you are getting older, your body may not be able to heal as fast as it used to." Really not what I wanted to hear.  I mentioned to another doctor that I had gained some weight, to which she answered, "Well, you are getting older, and if you gain weight, it gets harder to lose it, not like when you were young." Ouch.  I find it humorous that two different doctors not only told me the same thing basically, but both felt the need to remind me: you are getting older. Really? Dang. Just when I was starting to believe I could live forever! Kill joys these doctors are, I'm telling you. "If you don't have anything nice to say..." then you must be a doctor.
Haha, just kidding, sort of. (I offer an at least half-hearted apology to any of you who are doctors.)
My point is, that I have found a sort of comfort in the whole idea of things taking longer because I'm getting older. I've been tracking my progress and thinking, darn it! I expected some results by now!! I've lost...oooh, two pounds after a month of trying to eat right and exercise. My goal is ten, total. Just to get to where I was...well, not that long ago. I refuse to believe the other thing I've been told which is: you get to a certain age and then you put on weight, can't do anything about it.  Wanna' bet?
All this to say that when I have an unproductive day, in regards to my "quest for health" I've decided that I need to be a little more patient with myself.  I need to look at what I have achieved so far, and see that as inspiration to keep going. After all, I'm getting older, I can't be wasting time worrying about whether I'm doing it perfectly or rapidly, and just do it.
Besides, tomorrow will be a better day.

Caren E. Salas

Me in college: actress, dancer...full of energy.

Thanks to Robin Harrison for the photo,
 and California State University Dominguez Hills.