Thursday, April 21, 2005

Mr. Treadmill

Day one of the new daily schedule of Shelly that includes exercise. I know that I cannot jump to the physically fit Shelly, so I started out slow. I went downstairs to the exercise room. Yes, I am lucky to have one located in my building. Funny that I still couldn’t manage the time to use it, but today I did.

I allowed myself 40 minutes for my use only, in the exercise room. The choice was treadmill, elliptical machine, exercise bike or weights. I chose the treadmill and used the "fat" burning program. It was the coolest thing. The bloody treadmill actually elevated, lowered, increased speed and decreased as often as required in order to keep my heart rate on target. It took a lot of the guessing out of it and that left me more mindless minutes to meditate.

While I walked alone in the exercise room, I suddenly realised that I was really enjoying myself. I felt happy to feel small beads of sweat forming on my skin. The rhythmic sound of my footsteps was comforting. My flushed face made me feel victorious.

After the machine had finished burning my fat, and had decided that I was sufficiently cooled off, I smugly sauntered back to my apartment to get ready for work.

I had miscalculated my timing and in the end I had to rush in order to get to work on time, but that didn’t detract from my euphoric feeling of having spent quality time with my new best friend, Mr. Treadmill.

Tuesday, April 19, 2005

Health = A (kind of) Job = Not sure

I must apologise to my patient readers for my lack of writing lately. I've been swept off my feet with work and have not been able to surface long enough to put a couple of thoughts together.

I'm going to attempt a small update on the wonderful, intriguing life of Shelly.

I went for a physical with my new Doctor today. I visited her in March to follow up on an annoying sensation on the right side of my stomach. This annoyance had been occurring intermittently for approximately four years. Two years ago I had an ultrasound that failed to show the cause of this dull ache and I was supposed to go for another one.

I put the requisition in my purse and immediately forgot about it. That's not true. I didn't forget about it; I chose to ignore it. That is the part of my character that puzzles me. If my friends have any health concerns, I am always there to encourage them to seek medical attention right away. Early detection is the best protection. My favourite slogan.

The new good Doctor referred me to the lab for a bone density test, and ultrasound and took vials and vials of blood to be tested on everything imaginable.

Today I was finally able to obtain the results other than the bone density test, because for some strange reason a one month interval is not long enough to deliver the results to the Doctor, even though they were done on the same day, in the same lab. She assured me that when she gets them back she will let me know if they show anything.

Here are the things I found out today:

1. My blood cholesterol, sugars etc. are all very good.

2. I'm borderline high blood pressure 130/90. She said the bottom number is the one that is sitting on the fence and if it goes up then I would have high blood pressure.

"No more salt on your food, and get out and exercise!"

3. I have NO communicable diseases.

4. I am in menopause. They do not suggest hormone replacement therapy anymore unless the person is having difficulty with the symptoms of menopause. I’m not sure what all the symptoms of menopause are, but I did experience hot flashes about three years ago. Perhaps that is all that I will go through.

5. My liver is still fatty (that showed up in the original ultrasound) and it still has a simple cyst. She is going to monitor it every six months with a new ultrasound. The only way to repair a "fatty" liver is to lose weight.

6. I shouldn’t drink alcohol with the "fatty" liver. This would explain why I get sick to my stomach when I over indulge slightly or sometimes when I just indulge. My mother told me that my Dad’s Father died of cirrhosis of the liver, which I never knew. I need to lose weight to help reduce the symptoms and as I’m just reading about it here, this may be the dull ache I have felt in my right side. It’s hard to pinpoint where that ache is but my intuition has always made me feel that it was my liver. Time to get serious about Shelly.

7. I need to start exercising regularly in order to lose weight. She is more concerned with me exercising than she is with my diet. She said that I will no longer lose weight through diet alone (menopause) and that if I were to get into an exercise routine then I wouldn’t have to be on a strict diet.

8. She wants to see me in three months to see how my weight loss is coming along. This is the kind of support that I feel is important for me. Years ago, when I was trying to lose weight, my Doctor at the time monitored it and I was very successful. So who knows, this may be the kick in the ass I’ve needed.

So that is good and bad news. There was nothing that she told me that was beyond turning around, so all in all, I would have to say that I am in good health. I can be in better health and that is what I need to concentrate on.

Change of subject to my job for a minute. I still have not heard the results of the Supervisor competition. It’s a long, slow process. I was asked quite suddenly to step in for the afternoon shift supervisor at the end of March because the day shift supervisor returned to his substantive position, which resulted in a bit of a domino affect. I agreed and started supervising the afternoon shift on April 1st. You can probably see now that this change in duties directly affected my capacity to blog. That isn’t the only affect.

I am excited at the challenge but I’m also struggling not to feel overwhelmed. I signed up for a course to help with the new challenge and that will begin on May 14th. It’s every Saturday for 4 weeks and the topic is Human Relations. I’m very excited about it. Whether or not this becomes a permanent position, at this point, I know it is the direction that I am concentrating on as far as my career is concerned, so the course will definitely benefit me in the years to come.

That my peoples is it in a nutshell. I’ve been focused on work and health for the past few weeks and there has been no time to play with my blog. I hope things will start to settle back to the way it was before and that regular programming will return.

Sunday, April 10, 2005

Creative Visualization

Do you believe in Creative Visualization? I read a book about 5 years ago called Creative Visualization by Shakti Gawain. When I read the book I realized that I had practised this technique many times throughout my life but mainly as a child or young adult.

Some of my memories of using this technique are:

Creative Visualization Image - My sister and I are having a wonderful birthday party for our dolls, complete with beautiful birthday cakes with candles and the two of us singing Happy Birthday harmoniously on a glorious, sunny morning.
Reality Check - my sister and I attempting to stick lit matches into the holes of baby cookies to turn them into cakes and dropping the lit matches onto the floor, in the paper wastebasket etc. Result, entire apartment unit burned beyond recognition, loss of all personal belongings and being displaced with strangers until my parents found another place to live. Age 5 years.

Creative Visualization Image - I am a wild stallion galloping fiercely on the plains of the wild, wild west while some Indians and Cowboys either fought nearby or were attempting to capture me
Reality Check - running wildly through the playground age 6 - 10 yrs, groups of boys either fighting with each other or chasing me for some unknown terrifying reason.

Creative Visualization Image - I am the fastest runner in the world. My pigtails stand straight out when I engage my extra powerful energy into my legs. I cannot be stopped.
Reality Check - winning my first race while participating in a yearly activity in school called Field Day. Everyone had to participate in a variety of athletic competitions with prizes of ribbons awarded to the most gifted athletes. Age 6.

Creative Visualization Image - My body is lighter than air. When pushed by my legs I am able to lift myself high into the air in order to surpass the metal rod. It doesn’t matter how high they place it, I will float easily above and land softly on the fluffy mat.
Reality Check - participating in the high jump competition, placed 3rd in my age group and received a beautiful ribbon. Age 7 - 8

Creative Visualization Image - my arms are so strong that when people watch me swimming the length of the pool, my body is scarcely visible because of the splash from the water. I arrive at the end of the pool long before my competitors.
Reality Check - placed 2nd in my first swim meet for 100m freestyle competition. I chose to swim the front crawl. I never had official swimming lessons, unlike the rest of my team mates and competitors, but I loved the water and had joined the team at the beckoning of my friend. When we first arrived at the meet, I was terrified and shy but my imagination took over once I was standing on the edge of the pool with the others waiting to hear the whistle. Age 12.

Creative Visualization Image - I’m making dinner in my own kitchen and I’m very happy. My husband is outside working around the yard. The sun is shining, the house is very happy and warm. Marriage is as wonderful as I could possibly have imagined.
Reality Check - that weekend, my ex-boyfriend who I imagined as my husband, met up with me by coincidence and offered to give me a ride back to Toronto on the back of his motorcycle after not speaking to me for 6 months. We reunited, later married and stayed together 14 years. It was not the happy marriage of my dreams, but part of it came true. I was married and I was always in the kitchen. Age 18.

Creative Visualization Image I’m working at an Insurance company in my town. Each week I receive my huge paycheque and go out to buy nice new dresses to wear to work each day. My co-workers are great and we become close like a family. I love to go to work each and every day.
Reality Check - I was chosen out of hundreds of applicants as the newest employee of that insurance company. The pay was better than most jobs in town and I did become very close with my co-workers. The nice new dresses didn’t happen as often as I imagined but that position did help afford a better lifestyle than I had been living prior to it. Age 18.

I’m dreaming of being independently wealthy with several handsome suitors, that are only to happy to be at my beck and call. Life is very good and success comes easy. I’ll let you know when it happens.

Friday, April 01, 2005

And The Correct Answer Is...

7 times.

He rang my cell phone 6 times on a Saturday morning, two weeks after he stood me up. There were three messages left, one apologizing for "missing" the Sunday before (it was two weeks prior), the second message pleaded with me to stop being aggressive and call him back and the third was a hang up.

The last call was last weekend and he left a message acknowledging that I must be pissed at him, but I should call so he can explain.

I didn't call and will not.

Just thought that it's funny how I thought I had heard the last of him when he didn't show up at the bar and how strange that in spite of that, he thinks that I should want to talk to him.

Clearly a nutbar!