Tuesday, November 17, 2020

COVID - 8 months in

 So, good thing I gave up the daily updates a long time ago, eh?

So here's where we are:

Kids: still 100% distance learning.  Plan is to go back to in person hybrid Jan 19, but we are back in the purple tier, so that's iffy.  We cannot open in purple.

Exercise: I have really been enjoying myself.  Running: overdid it at the beginning of COVID - had some sciatica pain return and also had Achilles tendon issues.  Dialed it back in mileage and started doing more Galloway run/walk, still had Achilles issues.  Then tweaked my knee doing...something.  Prob trail running.  So I dialed it back a bit MORE to Maffetone method (Google it). Basically, it's low heart rate training.  The theory is that most people who run are running at too high a heart rate and that's not good for you and doesn't build aerobic fitness. My heart rate while running runs SUPER high.

So, the conventional wisdom is that you subtract your age from 220.  So for me, that's 170 max HR.  My heart rate on long runs or hilly runs EASILY gets into the 190s, or over 200.  So, yah.  I think I just run high.  The Maffetone method uses a formula of 180-age for the max.  So, that's 130.  Well, that's like walking for me almost.  The idea is that you do a lot of volume at a low heart rate - it takes several months to see improvement, but in the end, you will improve.

Most of these methods (Galloway, Maffetone) suggest that you can hit a PR if you do it right.  So what I see in both Facebook groups is two groups of people:

1. The people who want to PR.  With Galloway, the walk breaks prevent injury and prevent you from getting tired near the end of the race because walking and running use different muscles.  (Among other benefits.)  I found that I could go for a long time with run/walk methods - for example, I could run 7 miles and function the rest of the day.  No soreness, exhaustion, or headaches.  (Of course, my average pace was 13:30 vs 11:00 if I just ran the whole thing.)

2.  The people (like me) who want to keep moving, prevent injury, and enjoy themselves.  Injuries are for the BIRDS.  These methods just keep you moving longer.

So, as the Garmin watch HR monitor isn't terribly accurate, I sprung for a chest strap.  I have not been doing a lot of volume (7 hr a week is recommended, and it's not stressful because of the low HR).  I am aiming for 4-5 hours a week, because I have a life, and kids and a job.  My Maffetone pace right now is about 16-17:30 miles.  So...like walking.  Essentially, I warm up for 12 minutes (walking), then do an easy jog for 15 seconds until the HR is about 130.  Then I walk.  My "range" is 120-130 bpm, but I have the watch set to beep at 115 and 135.

So why am I enjoying this?  I love walking!  This method is super easy on the joints and the heart.  I have no idea if it will improve my fitness and make me faster, but there aren't any races coming up - so it's the perfect time to try.  

So, the exercise schedule:

Run/walk Tues/Thurs (at MAFF)

Family walk Saturday (usually at MAFF)

Weight training Monday/Weds/Friday.  I made up my own calendar - I do some Hammer and Chisel (which is HARD, YO).  Sometimes I skip Hammer and Chisel and do LIIFT4 with the hubby because we are competing for the TV on Monday/ Friday.  On Weds, I do 80 day obsession or one of the minis - A little obsessed or a Little More Obsessed.  Basically, I like full body workouts, so I alternate Today Body Core and AAA (Arms, Abs, Ass).  The 80DO workouts are 60 min, which is a bit long for me if I sleep in, so I decide in the morning whether to do the long one or one of the shorter ones.

Basically, I'm really enjoying doing different, new things, as opposed to what I did most of the this year, which is plan a strict workout program with specific goals to get stronger.  

Daily: November "100 swings" challenge with my old kettlebell gym group.  We can mix it up though, so sometimes I do 100 Kettlebell swings, sometimes I do pushups/ situps/ swings.  Any combo of 100.

Also, the occasional dog walk.

Vacation:  I miss vacation.  We had a mini trip planned for this coming weekend and canceled it because: COVID.  Haven't traveled since November of last year.

Work: Working with kids at home is hard yo, but I do get a lot done in fits and spurts.  Sadly, one of my best bosses ever and very favorite coworkers passed away suddenly last month.  We are all gutted.  I still cannot believe it.

Politics: Dump Trump Whee!

Thursday, September 10, 2020

So, it's September already

Virtual school still sucks for an 8 year old.  I don't expect to be back at school even in hybrid mode until 2021.

The west coast is burning.

I miss my friends.  I haven't gotten together with anyone outside my household, really, since June?  A backyard birthday 'do in August, but only lasted about 10 minutes because: too many people, not enough masks.

I miss silence.  4 people in a 3 room house, and I get overwhelmed.

I love hugs.  I get them from my family.

I need to simplify.  I have too many things on my plate, with virtual school, work, and chores.  I have spent hours the last few weeks tracing down missing items and missing refunds for one of my produce boxes.  Today?  No box at all.  

Saturday?  We got a random box that didn't belong to us, with $40 cash in it.  So I spent hours trying to figure how who it belonged to.  Never did figure it out.  Gave the box to the neighbor (he was out of veggies anyway) and donated the $ to the food bank.

People are mean.  Why are people so mean?  Especially on the internet, so many attacks without giving people the benefit of the doubt.  And not only mean one time, but then doubling down and posting ELSEWHERE - go over and check this out!  Ugh.  

I am so fucking tired of Trump.  He's a sexist, racist, misogynist.  A liar, a narcissist, and people still want to vote for him.  See above: people are mean.  And racist.  Why are people so racist??  But hey I got a tax cut.

I'm tired.  

I'm reading a lot.

I've been using Paprika to store recipes and do meal plans. I discovered this recipe for crock pot Indian butter chicken.  It's not authentic, but it is delicious.  I've made it twice now.


Here are some pictures.

Conf calls in the car

Curry lentils with cauliflower

Bougainvillea on a walk

A mailbox

She loved this bone

Gluten free chocolate chip cookies

Virtual learning is awesome

That's a house with an infinity pool

Chard, chickpea, sweet potato curry

Pretty flowers in the middle of a dirt patch


Birthday bunny cake

Ocean views

Pico de gallo

Beach time


We paint and hide rocks

This is how I lift


Creekside on a family hike

Tuesday, September 1, 2020

Virtual learning is really shitty, thanks for asking

 Notes, in no particular order, on virtual learning:

1.  My 8 yo WILL NOT pay attention to the teacher.

2.  If he doesn't want to do it, he ignores her and reads his book.

3.  He will literally read his book and then come ask me "what did she say?"

4.  He spends most of the time fiddling with crap on his desk, that I constantly have to take away.

5.  Yes, we share an "office" (their bedroom).

6.  I get approximately 15 minutes of work done every hour, from 8:30 until 12:00.  So, maybe an hour, tops.

7.  I have to sit next to him, and force him to pay attention, every. single. minute.

8.  Right now he's working on reading.  He was reading his book, and preparing to talk about it.  I left to move over to my desk.  I hadn't even completed logging in when he came over to bug me.

9.  No, I cannot leave the room, because he will literally do nothing.

10.  Yesterday, 45 minutes of writing (specifically with no parent allowed, to get a feel for their current writing ability) - I left the room.  When I came back later, it was to a FUCKING BLANK PAGE.

11.   I might as well just work through lunch so that I can get work done.

12.  I have friends with kindergartners and first graders who are more miserable than me, if you can imagine.

13.  I LOVE his teacher.  She's awesome.  But virtual learning is NOT working for him.  

14.  If we were teaching him, we could be done in 2 hours instead of 4.  The school does not offer this option though the district says it exists.  It's too much work for teachers to do both.  (Totally understandable.)

15.  I'm so fucking tired.  I haven't had a vacation since November. I'm 50 years old for crying out loud.  Nobody in my house really cares that I haven't had a vacation.  "I hate vacation", "I'm too busy".  

16.  He'll be fine.  He's 8.  He knows multiplication and is currently reading Harry Potter book five, which is an AR level of 7.2 (7th grade).

17.  I don't know if I'll be fine.  I at least get 2 to 6 pm solid work every day, but by 5 pm I'm beat...last night I was working after dinner, but then I can't sleep worth crap.

Tuesday, July 28, 2020

New things that I've learned, and started using!

Today, I learned how to delete comments on facebook posts. 

And... I learned how to change the sharing settings to hide certain friends from seeing them.

This is much better for my mental state.  I COULD respond to the "You've got to be kidding me" with the "well, you are the POSTER CHILD for selfishness."

But you know, no. 

So, instead, I deleted the comment.

And then I changed the sharing so that she can no longer see it.

Peace out.

Friday, July 10, 2020

Recent thoughts about things

It's tomato season!  We are finally getting tomatoes as add-ons in our boxes (one of them).  So, bring on the tomato-mozzarella-basil salad. 

I miss my Sunday potlucks.  Some weeks, we'd have 3 versions of that salad.

My baby turned 8 this week!

The kids have been working out with Mike.  Today, Nick wasn't feeling the leg day.  He skipped yesterday too.  Daniel did leg day like a champ today.

Mike is feeling stronger but isn't losing weight.  "I'm eating more."  Yes, that's what you do when you lift weights.  You are supposed to.  Even the pros do that.  Eat up!

I may have PMS.  My kid and work are pissing me off today.

Our anniversary is next week, whee!  What to do.  😂
Work. Eat at Home. Maybe sunset walk on the beach?

COVID is a bummer.  Today, I read about a dude in Ohio who in April, posted how "I'm NOT buying a mask, I've managed this long without one!"  In June, on quarantine due to testing + for COVID.  July 2, having difficulty breathing.  July 4, dead.  He was 37.  What a shame, but if his death gets others to wear a mask...

I bought some kids masks (4) and adult (2) from a local place with local art.  They look great BUT the adult masks are too large for me and the teen, and naturally the kid masks are too small. So the 8yo has 4 masks and hubby has 2.  Plan B, try to look for adjustable ear loop fabric masks.

WHAT is going to happen with schools in the fall? Nobody knows.

I'm tired of takeout.

I started running again after 1.5 weeks off.  Taking it slow.  I like not having something to train for.  I've switched to long dog walks on Saturday with the hubby and/or kids.  Fun.  We are 4 months into COVID with no end in sight.  Need a new plan, clearly I can't just RUN off the stress, that was killing my Achilles.

Tuesday, July 7, 2020

Half way into COVID-19 summer (almost)

Yeah, I think school starts in 6 weeks?  7 weeks?  Almost half way through summer.  How are we managing?  Schedules.

Kid 1: has to exercise every day, and read.  I also want him to do some other stuff, like programming on line, writing, or projects.  But for now, he has been reading for an hour to six a day, so that's good enough.  He's doing a weight training workout with my husband 4x a week and joining the dog walks on other days.

Afternoons are for Fortnite.

Kid 2: same.  He has been mostly doing Cosmic Kids Yoga every morning, and joining me for walks in the afternoon or doing the evening dog walk. Sometimes he'll do calisthenics instead. 

For school stuff: reading every day (30 min), then another school thing every day (Dreambox, Lexia, writing, math pages) every day.  He also does legos.  Afternoon: TV or video games.

This way husband and I each get a good solid 4-6 hours of work in the afternoon, and a couple of broken hours in the morning.  We each try to interact with the kids in the morning when they are off electronics - games, snuggles, talking, whatever.

Weekly fun:
- Tuesday we have started "beach morning". In the early morning, 8:30-ish, beach is empty except for this large group of older folk walking.  I take kid #2 and we can plop down with our towel and bucket and play.  We take a bag of toys and a towel.  We play for about an hour and a half.  Husband joins us later and we swap. I leave around 10 to shower and start work, husband stays until 10:30.

- Takeout on Wednesday.

- Weekend longer dog walks.

These regularly scheduled things help break up the monotony of the work / no camp week.

Friday, July 3, 2020

The beaches are closed

The beaches are closed for 3 days due to COVID.  The idea is to keep the tourists away, as Los Angeles and Ventura have also closed their beaches.  This is why we can't have nice things.

Anyway, the bars are closed again for 3 weeks.  The restaurants are back to outdoor dining only, for at least 3 weeks.  I'm glad we went to the beach on Tuesday morning.  Staying home this weekend.

Beaches are still open for recreation - swimming, walking, running, surfing, kayaking.  Just no sitting.

Stay safe people.