Care to go for a run?

Yesterday was the 1st time i ran…  without being late, not in a hurry to work, or to catch means of public transportation. Yesterday was the 1st time i actually went to the park and ran… for pleasure and health.

running by the lake

And i was very happy for myself… and surprised that i liked it.

I am theoretically not allowed to run, jump, dance a lot or just stand for more than 15 minutes –  but i kinds do all of the above, and more. When i was 17 –  that was what, like last year? :D  –  i had a small accident during gym class, and i ended up spending 1 week with both my feet in gypsum, from my butt to the ankle. That fact, together with the incompetency of the doctor that treated me, ended up in broken ligaments and i am thus more or less limited in movement… for now. There are options –  special excercisez, medecine and surgery –  but for the last years i have limited myself to exercizes and the hope that i will be in those 5% that actually manage to heal their ligaments the natural way.

So yesterday was a big achievement for me –  both physically and psychologically. I used to hate running, back in school. It is probably because I (we) were all pretty out of shape, and we had to run a specific mileage, without any proper previous training, warmup or information about if  and how  we are supposed to breathe. I already know now that it is important to keep your breath constant –  and that is why yesterday i applied my theoretical knowledge vastly as i ran around the lake and as people would turn to let me pass. They probably heard me coming :)

I probably did not strike anyone as the regular runner –  ok, i was wearing running shoes ( ones that i usually use for just walking) but i was in my jeans… However, i plan to go back next weekend, properly dressed and mentally prepared to follow a beginner  runner programme.

Ahhm, spring is finally here :)

How i get bullied by the Fitness Center sales person

I am a person who finds it very hard to say no. I know that about myself, so I am not really a target for diverse salesmen –  at least not when their approach is predictable and routine.

As I became unemployed in the middle of October, I had promised myself (who doesn’t?) – that I would get a gym membership and work out. Working out at home has its ups and downs, and thus I decided that I was going to try the gym for a while and then see how that goes. I was supposedly going to have the necessary time and the flexibility, so it all seemed like a good idea.

I checked out some websites online, and as I stumbled upon one center that was just across the street from where I live, I thought –  well isn’t this perfect! So I went.

It did take me a few days weeks, but I went.

Yes, I did want to see the insides of the center, and I wanted to know more about the programs and all. The nice lady took me for a tour, and she explained how things work, I did not agree to anything but I did say I was going to think about it and I gave her my phone number.

Little did I know she would be calling me every week. And yes, I keep telling her that no, I did not make up my mind yet, etcetera etcetera… But I cannot say no. I even agreed to come to the center again and discuss some issues. Oh, just say NO,k I AM NOT INTERESTED already.

So in the end, I feel a bit like Chandler and Ross, from friends, bullied by the fitness center sales representative J

Enjoy the below video –  it is hilarious !


Kindling in public transportation

troleibuzSo, the work-life balance problem strikes again. But this time, i am ready for it.

At the suggestion of a friend who has all  these great ideas/advice that he himself has never ever put into practice, but condemns the ones who say it is impossible/hard/not worth it  to do X and Y , i decided that ok, i was going to bring a book and read on the way to work. After all, i don’t really have any other time available during the week, and reading IS a must. Even if the ride is quite short and i would only read 1-2 pages – or 1% on the kindle  – it would be a small step, but one made ahead nevertheless.

Two thumbs up. Without any further delay, i checked the battery on my kindle, stuck it into my bag right next to my breakfast and my lunch and that was it.

Or so i thought.

It has been 2 days now that i  try  to read in the trolleybus –  and i must say it is indeed no easy task. Not only are the roads very in pretty bad shape, but the actual means of transportation do not even come close to the concept smooth driving, amortization and speed adjustments while engaging in U turns. So yes, i try to keep my kindle steady and read, but a lot of the times, i have to also hold on to my bag and hold on to the rails. While i am seated.

It is a challenge, but i am not one to give up on this easy and principle based  task. And i am up to 3% today. Hopefully tomorrow i will get on a newer trolleybus and i can jump up to 4, or even to 5%.  Pretty bold of me, huh?

“Feeling Good” – one original and many original covers

The original song was featured on the  The Roar of the Greasepaint – The Smell of the Crowd, which is a musical from the mid 60’s.  In the show, “The Negro”, is asked to perform a game against the show’s hero “Cocky”; but, as “Cocky” and his master “Sir” argue over the rules, “the Negro” reaches the centre of the stage and “wins”, singing the song at his moment of triumph (full wiki here)


Feeling Good” has been covered by a number of artists; here are some:

Muse, in another post

Michael Buble

Nina Simone

The Pussycat Dolls

Joe Bonamassa

Sammy Davis Jr.

Traffic –  remastered

And if you haven’t had enough of this song, here is a great performance of Adam Lambert on American Idol:

… and a performance of John Barrowman


I knew there was something more to this song than met the ear – and it has met that ear many many times today :)

Muse – 3 out of many

While i was sharing the apartment with 3 good friends,  in the form of a permanent guest, in the morning we would take turns in putting on songs to brighten up the warm and sleepy summer mornings.  And now, whenever i play this one, i get transported right back to that kitchen, i am in my pajamas, ironing my shirt and laughing or discussing some  at the time very important but too insignificant to remember for more than a few hours  matter with the girls.

Secondly, my favourite mood booster:


And last but not least, the most recently found piece:



Week 2 – D

So here I am, after my second week with the White co, and I have to say that I feel much better… about a lot of things.

Week two –  D –  for dedication. And I do not mean just at work, but in general. Being efficient, dedicated and strong willed is not something one turns on/off –  it is not something you are one moment and not the other. You either have it, or you don’t.

It is a lifestyle. So I decided to live it.

It is no longer a surprise that  google and facebook know what I do in the morning. It looks like my digital persona is working out, as depicted by my article suggestions –  6 Ways to Wake Up Early,  7 Easy Ways to Become a Morning Person and 8 Ways to Wake Up with More Energy. (I must have missed the 1-5 bits).

So, in the meantime,  what is my physical persona doing?

Working out, of course.

The advice in the above mentioned articles is really great. I had actually started my routine  before getting to see them, but that makes me feel even more motivated  : aside from giving me a sense of pride that I thought of a similar routine all on my own, I get to not make excuses anymore : if it is written online, it must be true, right?

good-morning-0vStep 1. Waking up early

It is actually not as hard as I imagined it would be. I used to be a morning person a few years back, when I had to cram lots of different activities into the same day, and thus I knew that if I could do it then, I can do it now.

I wake up at the same time, and I go to bed at the same time. +/- 10 minutes.

Also, it solves a problem that I used to have in the evening: that great desire to stay awake, as if I did not want the day to end… yet. And it never felt like it was the right time to go to bed. Well, the issue is resolved now, as I KNOW when the right time to go to bed is. When I reach that time, I get sleepy and totally unproductive – the latter feeling makes me want to go to bed and leave my tasks for the day to come, when I KNOW I will be very productive and efficient.

I fall asleep a lot easier, which is also great. No more fussing around in bed searching for that perfect position, no more switching sides of your pillow, no more heavy thoughts of missed opportunities and possible failures to come. Only sleep. No matter which side I am on.

People often say that one should never set a favorite song as an alarm clock… I did, and it works for me, as I keep singing that song for the 1st few minutes of the new day. Of course, the actual getting out of bed part is still tricky, but I am working on it… day in and day out.

 images (2)Step 2. Working out

Those seconds of doubt  – when I start hearing the voices that tell me I am sleepy/hungry/cold / likely to not finish my tasks in time and thus I should skip the workout and get to work early/my muscles hurt/I will just skip today coz I do not feel like working out and if I miss one day nothing will happen/I can reward myself with a snooze –  those seconds are shorter now, and I spring out of bed, I turn off the alarm and I stretch.

And it is a great feeling to breathe in the smell of the morning, even if it is an indoor one.

And yes, then I remember the video, Welcome to the Grind.  And I say that no, this is not all I am capable of. Yes I am sleepy, but I have to do this.



One has to first decide, whether to work out or not. And that decision is easy to make, and a bit harder to stick to. What is there to decide? A healthy body means a healthy mind. Also, with spring/summer on the way, there will be immense opportunities for the outdoor activities that I love: hiking and cycling. I will no longer catch my breath when I go up a hill, or when I have to take the stairs, 3-4-10 flights up.

I like knowing and feeling that my body is strong. And I hate this feeling that I have after working out, where my muscles are shaking when I attempt routine movements such as writing this blog post.

So yes, working out has a lot of positive, and only one negative –  laziness.

Working out…. at home

Working out at home has its challenges, though. First of all, it requires a bit more will power to both get going, and to keep going. Going to a gym is easier in that matter –  one decides to go to the gym, and once there, there is really no turning back. One has to  work out.



At home, things are not so straightforward.

At home, one can make the decision to work out, but without commitment to that decision, without sticking to the separation of the deciding and the doing – one can stop in mid arranging the furniture. And yes, the  latter is a must, as for example in my case, I do not have to move anything, but the rather small space confines some of my movements and I end up hitting the lamp more than once per workout session. (sigh)

Another reason why it is hard to stick to a routine is the peer pressure and the lack of effort gratification-  there is none at home, at least nothing immediate. At the gym, you see others who are in better shape, who manage to do more, who look better – and you feel motivated to do the same. At home, however, you only see yourself in the mirror, and guess what, those voices that you had shut down just a few minutes earlier start talking again, and you feel tempted to quit, as it is too hard for you, as you are not sure whether the routine works, or whether you are doing it correctly. At home, you get to be your own personal trainer – which is no easy job either…

But, the decision has already been made. (Great article, works every time I start re-thinking a decision already made…. ) Shut those voices out and breathe in, then out. Then stretch. Then start your routine.

In the end, in this case, what  you do does not matter as much as whether  you do it.