Thursday, October 23, 2014

Update About Nothing Much

Honestly, that's how I'm feeling these days.  Life is just ticking along and not too much exciting or new is happening.  I'm fairly well settled into my part time job and my next challenge will be when the mall extends its hours for the holidays.  That starts the first full week of December and the hours get longer and longer until the days right before Christmas when I won't be getting home until around 11 p.m.

I've already learned that I can't get home at 9:30 p.m. and expect to get to bed and be asleep in time to wake up for 4 am.  Yes, I can function on 6 hours of sleep but like many middle aged women, I don't actually sleep the whole time I'm in bed - on those nights I figure I'm getting somewhere around 4 hours of real sleep even when I set my alarm for 6 am which is my drop dead you have to get up time.  You can understand why I'm dreading the extended holiday hours, right?  Thankfully it will be only a couple weeks and be done.

Much to my disgust, this mall is opening at 6 pm on Thanksgiving Day and will stay open until 1 am then close and reopen at 6 am to 10 pm for Black Friday.  I will not work that.  I refuse to support Thanksgiving Day greed shopping, especially since this is not a particularly religious holiday and people of all beliefs and ethnicity's celebrate it.  In my opinion, there is just no need at all for this.

I'm still doing the Neila Rey 90 Days of Strength Program and at this point, I don't even have to do it every day.  I've gotten strong enough that if I need to, I can do 2 workouts together.  That has come in handy now that I often take a weekday morning off after working at night.

I'm also seeing the signs of strength in my running. I have a treadmill interval run that I like to do where I walk for 1 minute, jog 1 minute, run 2 minutes and sprint 1 minute - repeat for time or miles or whatever I'm feeling that day.  When I started doing that my sprinting pace was 6.0 (10 minute mile).  This morning as I did it I was doing the sprints at 7.0 (8:34 min. mile) with a 2% incline.  That's a huge improvement!  The strength is translating to outside walking and running as well.  I  now often walk at 13:15-13:30/minute pace (for shorter walks) and have finally gotten my running pace down below 12 minutes when I do an all running workout.  Never thought I would be happy with that but I am.

By the way, if you've ever been on a treadmill and wondered how the miles per hour translate to minutes per mile, here is a handy dandy Treadmill Cheat Sheet!

There's a hill near my house that is about 3/4 of a mile steady incline.  Often I've had to walk on that hill but the other day I did a workout I've named Telephone Pole Sprints.  As I approach the hill at the first telephone pole, I run as fast as I can to the next pole.  Then I walk a pole, then I sprint.  Repeat until I'm all the way up the hill.  Imagine my delight when I saw that my overall running pace was better than when I just try to run then walk if I need to.  That means my sprint sections were fast!

Ya'll know I cook a lot but with working the new job nearly every Sunday, I finally hit the wall and couldn't batch cook because I'm really left with only 1 day off per week to get all the rest of it done - leftover housework, laundry, cleaning, grocery shopping and miscellaneous chores.  I was so tired this past weekend I decided I just didn't care and we could have sandwiches for Sunday "dinner."  As I was getting in my car to go home Sunday night at 6:30, I got a text from Mr. Helen: "I'm putting hamburgers on the grill, what time are you leaving there?"  WOOT!  I was delighted and shocked because he also works every Sunday. Guess who is feeling a heck of a lot less pressure to get the cooking done?

I mean, when I'm home, I don't mind cooking at all but I'm not going to pressure myself any more over it. On Saturday night, I actually managed to throw together a pizza and a Greek salad.  Mr. Helen loves pizza and is appreciative that I'll make it.  In fact I'm pretty sure he prefers my homemade pizzas to ones we could buy.

And I  was home on Tuesday night so I planned a treat for Mr. Helen - I made plantains and Johnny Cakes like we get in St. Martin to go along with our barbequed chicken and coleslaw.  He was so excited when he saw the Johnny Cakes that he grabbed one and devoured it.  But when I asked him how it was he said, "Not bad."  Believe me he got a lesson the the difference between "not bad" and "pretty good" after that lol.  But he ate 4 of them so I think they were pretty good.  I ate one and thought they were nearly identical to the ones we get in the Caribbean, but I don't get the same delight and satisfaction as he does out of them so maybe I don't know anything about a Johnny Cake.  Anyway, here's a picture of them.

As you can see he isn't really suffering as he's getting things he loves when I do cook.  It won't hurt him to wing it sometimes, right?

Speaking of food, 'tis the little bite sized candy season, and it's all on sale.  As I explained to someone, I can't just choose to not have it in my house because Mr. Helen likes it and eats it reasonably.  My way of dealing in the past was to not have it sitting out, or to put a couple pieces in my calorie count.  Of course, I'm not counting calories anymore so I was a bit apprehensive when the first candy came home (sometimes it's him that buys it.) I am joyfully telling you I am not having a bit of problem with it.  I'm not eating it just because it's there and when I have had some, the amount has been reasonable!  Very exciting for this long-time dieter to know food can just "be" and I don't have to let it control me emotionally one way or the other!


  1. It sounds like things are humming along nicely for you, and that's just wonderful - you're carving out a normal life even with all the extra work. :)

    Sweet of you to make those Johnny cakes for your man. Sweet of him to cook for you on Sunday. You two kind of make me sick...HAH! ;)

    1. Don't worry, we're not usually that nauseating LOL!

  2. I couldn't have that little candy in my house. I have a hard time resisting it when its sitting out on store counters.

    1. I actually sat in front of the bowl for 2 hours last night and didn't even eat one piece. I'm thinking maybe because I've given myself permission to have it whenever I want, it has demystified it or something. In any case, I'm happy about that.

  3. Do you get any discount for being a mall employee?

    Whenever something new gets introduced to the mix, it always feels good to hit that spot where it becomes routine again - even if it is new routine.

    I refuse to shop on Thanksgiving. I worked in the restaurant industry for a while and had to work Thanksgivings and I swear the family squabbles on that day in the restaurant! Ugh! Big families and all their baggage come to the restaurant and all the arguing LOL.

    I get the Black Friday thing as people will often get together and it is tradition, but not on turkey day. Besides... football!

    1. The only discounts mall employees get are occasionally from the food court vendors - Dairy Queen will sell us a giant soda for only 99 cents. So, in my book I don't get discounts. You'd have to be employed at individual stores I think.

      Black Friday isn't really a holiday though, so fine. Why can't these crazy retailers and malls at least go back to early morning openings like they did just a few years ago?

  4. D*mn blogger ate my comment, AGAIN! Okay here we go, hope I remember it all.

    Nothing wrong with not happening much, had the same week last week.

    You know everything doesn't have to be perfect. If you don't have time to cook ahead because of your longer work hours, don't worry about it. You'll get back to it in January. I never cook ahead and use mostly 30 minute recipes during the week so I don't have to spend much time in the kitchen after work.

    I hate the 24/7 economy that is growing and growing. F.e. we celebrate 2 days of Christmas and on December 26 more and more shops are open but the past 2 years even some shops are open on December 25 where it was common that every shop was closed. Why should everything be open 24/7? If you know shops are closed, you just shop the day before or after. I really hate the 24/7 economy sometimes.