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Fit Fiancee

A healthy life beyond the wedding

Engaged in the desert

Last summer (2015), we moved to a dusty, run down city in the desert, away from the frigid winters of the Midwest.  I was ready to leave my job and ready to escape the 6-8 months of ice, gloom, snow, and chills.  We arrived in the midst of summer: 110 degrees and no end in sight.  But alas, we do our time here until we are ready for another adventure.

We talked about forever soon after we met, but made it official in November.  The proposal was perfect for me; quiet, secluded, and at a great restaurant in a fun city (not where we live).  Now, June, our wedding is less than 6 months away and we’re doing everything to get ready and to get our lives in gear… for the rest of our life.

 

This is our adventure.

 

Adventure: traveling, hiking, backpacking.

Health: yoga, self-defense, cooking, eating.

Finance: budgeting, making money, saving money.

 

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Featured post

Bikram pose 9 : Triangle pose

Ah, my fiance’s least favorite – trikanasana pose.  He basically hates anything that involves a lunge.  So now, take a lunge and hold it!

I think it’s not so bad except for the couple of yoga practices we had after spending an hour doing legs exercises/squats.  Really it was hard to even walk then.

This one is really supposed to help with weight problems.  You have to focus on using your leg strength, tightening your butt muscles, holding your arms up, keeping your spine in alignment, and using your core muscles to stay strong.

 

*Helps with kidneys and digestions

*Strengthens legs and arms (I guess most standing poses do)

*This is a hard one to not hold your breath, so focus on breathing.

*Opens hips, improves stability

*Neck strengthener

 

 

Anyone else hate this one like my fiance?  I don’t mind it!

Bikram pose 17: Full Locust

Week 5!  Day 4.

This pose reminds me of “superman” if you ever did that in any fitness class?  I did.

This one I don’t mind but I haven’t noticed any progress one way or another.  It’s supposed to help a lot with opening up the chest and flexibility of the spine.  Pretend you’re flying… but you’re on a sweaty towel.

bikram-poses_FullLocust-300x300

  • Spine flexibility
  • Strength in abs, legs, arms (holding yourself up!) and butt.
  • Opens front organs (liver, spleen)

 

Also, it is said to activate the Muladhara Chakra.  I don’t know much about chakras, but I like the quote below.

“Everyone admires the leaves and flowers of a plant, but hardly anyone takes any notice of the roots that lie hidden in the darkness of the earth. But the roots form the basis of the vegetation. From the sustenance received from the roots the sprout gains the power to penetrate the dark soil, grow upwards towards the sun and produce flowers, fruit and seeds.”

 

Bikram?  It’s getting easier.  Some days.  It’s never easy but I am noticing improvements already.  Remember tree pose –> toe pose?  When I started I predicted that I’d be able to do toe pose.  I can do it now!  I’ve very wobbly but I can get in position and sometimes release my hands from the floor.  I can sometimes go back in camel pose (without feeling dizzy).  It’s only week 5 and lots of noticeable improvement.

Why I Hate My Dog

Love this dog – he looks like mine 🙂

Longreads

Richard Gilbert | Longreads | July 2016 | 18 minutes (4,584 words)


Belle Krendl, “our” dog but really mine, is a furtive, ragtag creature. She suffers in comparison to our prior dogs—and to most we’ve known. In fact, she suffers in comparison to any pet we’ve ever owned, including jumpy, escape-prone gerbils; a pert exotic lizard that refused to eat; cannibalistic chickens that stared with malice in their soulless green eyes; and a sweet, dumb, tailless black cat named Tao who spent his life staring into space with huge yellow eyes—but once, in a blur, grabbed and gulped down a gerbil our daughter dangled before him by way of introduction.

A Jack Russell terrier, or maybe a Jack cross, Belle Krendl is covered in whorls of stiff white hair. Bristly brows and white lashes accent her black eyes, as do her lower eyelids, a disconcerting garish pink. In the house…

View original post 4,722 more words

How I Save Some $$

Just some random bits.

 

 

Most of the time when I shop I am looking for a specific item from a specific brand.  It gets more complicated (but perhaps easier to find deals and save money) if you are less specific about what you are shopping for.  

Sometimes it may take a discussion  with customer service.  Now, this doesn’t mean taking advantage of people but it means taking a stand for yourself.  I won’t speak to the specific company but I received an item that was shipped to me damaged.  Any item that arrives damaged should be replaced by the company.  In this case, I needed the item as I was using it for house decor in anticipation of company.  I didn’t really want to wait for a new item to arrive.  The damage was frustrating but it seemed like something we could potentially fix with some time and equipment.  Because that was going to cost me more effort and material I discussed options with the customer service.  They offered to either replace the item or give me a portion of the cost back for my trouble.  

Sometimes customer service will be willing to extend an offer that recently expired.  I bought a piece of artwork from an online retailer that had a huge sale going on the day before.  I asked customer service if they were willing to extend the sale if I bought the item with them that day.  It’s worth asking.

Timing!  If you don’t need the item this week, wait for promotions, wait for deals, wait for discounts to arrive in your inbox.  Watch for sales on shoes if you know you’ll need shoes in the next few months.  

Shipping!  Shipping can be a huge expense.  There are so many ways around paying shipping costs.  For example, if you have an American Express card you can sign up for ShopRunner which partners with a lot of sites for free 2-day shipping.  I almost never pay shipping, only once in a blue moon if I need a specific item that is hard to find and has only a couple (or just one) retailers without free shipping offers.  Most websites have a minimum order for free shipping and it can be worth it to add other things you may need in the future, in order to save on shipping costs.  Amazon Prime is another program that suppresses shippings costs (and allows for quick shipping and free returns).  

 

Do I just buy the item I find online right away, or buy it at the store that I know carries it (i.e. New Balance shoes at New Balance)?  Never.  Occasionally there is an item that is store-exclusive and will not be found on other retail websites.  But that is rare.  

For an example, I went to an [unnamed] department store to try on jeans and pants.  I finally found the ones I liked the best but since they didn’t carry my size, we searched online before leaving the store (and before having them order me a pair from another location).  We found the same pants on Amazon along with a 20% off coupon code for that specific clothing line.  Now I get the same pair of pants, with free returns if they don’t fit, they arrive at my front door, and I save 20% of the cost.

If you are looking for a specific item you can simply enter the item name in Google and your results will (hopefully) be filled with listings of them item on various websites.  If you are looking for a Marmot 4-person orange tent, you may find listings at Cabela’s, REI, backcountry.com, and many other camping and outdoors websites.  Look around and compare the prices.  Do any of the sites offer coupons or discounts for the item, or coupons for new customers?  In addition, now that you learned about “cashback” you can take all of the websites that your item is sold through and see which one offers the greatest amount of cashback.  

Bikram pose 5: Standing head to knee

I can’t quite get this one right yet.  My leg doesn’t stretch all the way out for me to reach so for this one it will get better as my flexibility gets better.  This is a great pose for balancing!  Your body is held up by one strong leg – held straight; that part is a challenge for most people.  Because I have taken self-defense and boxing, it is not my go-to stance.  We are taught to protect our knees so to never lock up, always be on guard to defend that that means not locking your knee.  But in this bikram pose, Lock it!

posture-of-the-month_april_2013

*Great for your knees (any runners out there?)

*Digestion

*Balance and flexibility

*Blood circulation

*Improves your sex life????

*Belly in – helps strengthen the abs

In Defense of Bikram Yoga

Some people will love this post and some people will absolutely hate it.  Some people will only read the first couple of paragraphs and then click on to the next thing, claiming I am awesome, or th…

Source: In Defense of Bikram Yoga

Raising Wimps

I no longer talk to an old friend because she wouldn’t hear my opinion and got all offended.  She does campaigns and that kind of thing against bullying.  Let me first state that I think that’s great for people to find their issues to get involved with, and I don’t necessarily support kids being mean.

On the other hand, I think that bullying is a normal part of many people’s lives.  I think it’s akin to evolution and “survival of the fittest”.  I think that people who can be tough and deal with hard times end up further in life.  I think it takes strength to get through hardships and I think that through life there is a lot of unfairness and “bullying” and those of us that learn how to tough through it and/or stand up to it, end up successful.

Look at people who become celebrities or presidents, or any CEO.  They have a lot of haters and people that are critical of the way they do things.  If, every night, they go home and cry about it, they’ll never survive that job position.

I just saw a blog post about raising children to be soft.  That’s lovely…..until someone picks on them and they haven’t learned how to stand up for themselves.  Over and over, they get knocked down until it destroys them.  Yes, it’s sad that a lot of young people opt for suicide, I don’t wish that upon anyone.  But I ask, if those kids were taught to be tough, how to build strength, how to defend themselves, how to build confidence, would they have chosen that route?   Why don’t we focus on teaching confidence?

Teach your kids to be tough, teach them to be strong.  Sure, teach them to be compassionate and loving and kind, but pave the way for success later in life.  No one will make it to the top unless they can stand up for themselves when someone tries to push them down.

I’ll share this article: http://www.samuelthomasdavies.com/michael-phelps/

You can blame other people, situations, or yourself.. or instead you can decide how you respond.

Bikram yoga: pose 21

Week 3, Day 4:

Camel pose is one of the hardest for me!  It looks so easy but for some reason when I get in position and lift up my head (even before leaning back), I get dizzy and lightheaded.  From what I read, it’s just a vulnerable position and stirs up emotions in the body.  It is also a change in blood pressure.  Since the first day, it has gotten easier – I learn to raise my body slowly and my head last.   I set my hands behind my back, fingers facing downward, and push my elbows back.  Slowly, slowly lift up and push back.

cam

This pose is great for posture and flexibility in the spine and neck.  For those of us that sit at a desk, this is great for the lower back and helps strengthen our legs and stretch out the shoulders.

I will report back after more time in Bikram… assume this one gets easier!

My new best friend the Nalgene

I’ve always been terrible with hydrating… I would consider myself chronically dehydrated.  In fact I have been admitted to the hospital twice after visiting for miscellaneous things and finding myself dehydrated so I end up with IV’s for rehydration.  I guess my body just got used to it.

There were two reasons.  I’m 19 months sober but spent a lot of time dehydrated when I was using.  In addition I had a fear of drinking liquid during my eating disorder because it made my weight fluctuated.  So, from age 18-30 I was probably rarely properly hydrated.

Anywayyyyy in the last year this “dehydration” mania has been changing.  I moved to Arizona with peaks around 120 degrees.  I got crazy headaches for the first maybe 6 months of living here because I never drank enough water.  The heat was a lot more than I’ve ever been used to and I didn’t change my habits.  I first bought a Nalgene when my fiance and I went backpacking in Utah.  We needed it to load up water at the springs and to load up river water for boiling.

DSC01368

With the anticipation of starting Bikram, however, I started putting in more effort too.  I knew that I’d be in a hot and humid room full of people and I wasn’t keen on feeling nauseous or light-headed.  I wanted to get something out of the 90 minutes rather than just trying not to pass out the whole time.  So, since we started I’ve been loading my body up with water really well.  I use flavors to add which makes it a lot easier.  Sometimes with electrolytes as well.

 

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