The 'health' part of 'health & happiness'.
There is a bit of history to get out of the way here, so bear with me. I know it can be annoying. Over the last 10 years or so, a lot of things happened that I let get me down, so much so that the result was a stranger who was soft & squishy around the edges and weighed more than I ever had in my entire life. I didn't recognize her anymore. Not a good thing to do to yourself, but I don't do well when I am depressed and alone (BS was away at college). This isn't really me, BTW, but the resemblance is striking, I think.
But last year - the 2007 calendar year - was, in many ways, a very good year. This was mostly because of a very special friendship that had the promise of blossoming into a very special romance. Throughout the year, I was reaping the benefits, walking a lot at work and at home, riding the stationary bike in the evening. I was careful of my diet, and I felt good, physically and mentally. Aside from a couple of rocky patches, which everyone has, I was happier than I had been in years. Then something very bad happened in December, and the promise collapsed. What did I do? Back to my bad habits, and all the good I had done for myself was quickly being undone, so I have decided to halt the decline, but what to do, what to do?
I. don't. run. In addition to being very hard on the joints, I haven't found a feminine undergarment/double-rock-sling-shot to control the inevitable bounce factor when I run. I don't want to see the girls peeking out from under my shirt hem in 10 years.
So, unless someone can point me to a bra that holds them up like a firm pair of hands (although that might feel pretty good), I don't run.
But I really like my walking shoes and my bicycle.
I need to pause and pass along another bit of information. I work in a facility that provides residential care & services to children & young adults with severe & profound disabilities. One of our boys, I'll call him the Kid, is very bright, but that bright mind is locked inside a highly non-functioning body. We have been doing some things with him to try and expand his horizons, including taking him on overnight trips. I wish I could link to the news stories about that, but they mention his name, and this blog is very public.
Suffice it to say, he has a lot of untapped potential. We did take him to hear Team Hoyt speak. For those of you who don't know about them, the son, Rick, is very much like the Kid, only 30 years older. He went to high school, graduated from college, has a job and his own apartment. Watch this video, or this one, and you will know why we wanted the Kid to be able to be inspired by their story. Then, if you really want to have a good weepy moment, watch this one. I still choke up when I see these.
Anyway, The Hoyt's staff arranged for Rick and the Kid to go off to a quiet corner of the building, with their caregivers in tow, to have some time to 'talk'. And talk they did, for about an hour, with a lot of translating in the process. The Kid is now motivated to work hard at his studies, and he wants to do some races as well. Our local chapter of Team Hoyt has started taking our kids out to some of the local shorter races, and the Kid will be pushed in one in October. I started thinking, after seeing these videos, of a way I could kill 2 birds with one stone by doing something for myself and the Kid both. My boss takes part in the annual MS Bike Ride up the Eastern Shore of VA, accessible from the south via the Chesapeake Bay Bridge-Tunnel, a wonder in of itself. The 150 mile overnight ride would be out of the question due to the Kid's's complex medical needs, but I told him that if I could whip my 5... uh... 39 year old flab in shape (humor me, okay), I think I could do the 60 mile ride dragging his butt in a trailer behind me. He is willing to risk it.
I have asked my father to help me train. He is well-qualified to do this, having done many things athletic, like triathalons, century bike rides, and lots of other races. He was also a track & field official at the 1986 Atlanta Paralympic Games, so he will know how to whip me into shape with me kicking and screaming all the way. And scream I will, trust me. You think I'm kidding?
I'll start tomorrow Daddy, really. No, honest, I will. I have to go to rehearsal tonight, really.