[mospace]I was hoping to pull off the same big contest and hoopla I pulled off last year during the Movember movement. Unfortunately internal scheduling and some farily big staffing changes has made that impossible this year. So instead, on a personal level, I am telling you about my [mospace] page.
I wish I could have offered you prizes and such like I did [last year] but I’m afraid that just wasn’t in the cards this year. If you could find it in your heart to donate anyhow, that would be much appreciated.
[last year]: http://blog.seydesign.com/2010/12/01/rapidweaver-fans-raised-2180-for-movember/
I won’t beat around the bush here, raising kids is a long, thankless job. Kids are loud, obnoxious and they never listen. Kids make you lose sleep at night, they run you ragged all day long and they never run out of steam. Kids are the greatest source of contention in the house; they raise the conflict meter every chance they get and are masters at starting fights with their siblings, with other kids, _with_ mom and dad and _between_ mom and dad. Kids are always testing the boundaries.
But this is what kids are meant to do. How can we expect them to fit the boundaries of a grownup world if they haven’t first tested those boundaries and pushed outward against them? Testing those boundaries is what we refer to (later in life) as creativity, ingenuity and inspiration.
Having two fiery ginger girls of my own, I know full well how kids like to push the limits of conformity and more often then not, mom and I are pushed to our wits end. The gingers can be particularly feisty, terribly loud, anti-authoritarian, very emotional and extremely combative. While this does take it’s toll on us, we know that in many respects, these traits are going to make them very strong, independent adults one day.
So yes, raising kids is a long, thankless job… but the job is not without recompense. There are a few shinning moments in the molding of miniature human beings that make it all worthwhile. Those moments that make you breath a sigh of relief and say, “This is why we have kids!”
One such instance came for me just yesterday after a particularly trying few weeks. The youngest girl got time away on Saturday — attending a birthday party — and I thought a little time alone was due to the oldest daughter the day after. So I took her fishing. It was her first time.
It was one of those bonding moments between a parent and child that make one realize the greater purpose in life. These little bundles of evolving, growing cellular matter are just micro versions of ourselves waiting eagerly — even impatiently — to absorb all the information we can throw at them. They look up to us, want to become us, want to improve on us… they want to be “Mom and Dad 2.0″.
Biologically speaking there is likely a very good reason why we, as a species, are inclined to hold tighter to favorable memories then those that cause us pain. Memories are like photo albums; we fill them with those moments that shape and define us and those around us. We don’t tend to keep the pictures that didn’t quite turn out — the dark ones, the under developed, grainy, gritty images that make us look bad.
If you were to ask me why the last two weeks were difficult with the girls, I would be hard pressed to pinpoint one particular instance. It all just gets glazed over. But the memory of my daughter catching her first fish, one chilly spring day in her sixth year, will likely stick with both of us for as long as we live.
Raising kids is a long and thankless job, but I am loving every memory of it.
The worst part about being sick is that my body wants to sleep all the time and that just isn’t practical. The worst part about the weekends is that there is never enough hours to get done all the projects on my growing list of things to accomplish before summer ends, before thanksgiving, before your relatives come for Christmas… you get the point.
Now combining the two, being sick _on_ the weekend, results in fewer items being checked of my list of goals and too few naps for my tired, sick body. And what does that get me? A night of tossing and turning, thinking about what I could have done had I not taken those cat-naps that have surely contributed to my wakeful state at 1:48 am. sigh…
One thing they fail to tell you when you sign up at the “start your own business” stand is that you are it; you are the big cheese, the secretary, the janitor… you are the work force. But what happens when you get sick? You can’t call in sick. You can’t just hide in your cubical and sleep it off.
That’s the harsh reality for many of us small business owners. We are the only one we can count on to get the work done and our reputations, let alone bottom lines, cannot affoard to take rime off fora cold… or can we?
One thing I have worked hard on with my company is not working hard. I don’t mean to sound like my life is a peach and I don’t do an honest days work because I do. But I build flexibility into my work week. I work on a 4 day schedule with and asumed 5 day week… huh?
I work Monday to Friday but asume that at least one full day will be spent goofing off, researching, experimenting with code, playing games, or if need be, getting well. I compensate for this day of not working, I may work a few hours one evening, get up early another day, not take a lunch the next. In the end it all equates to me not feeling so guilty on a day like today; a day spent sniffling over a box of tissue as I half heartedy performed some machine maintenance, answered a few support emails, and poked around a few forums.
Will the company fall apart come Monday? Nope. According to my 4 day plan I am right on schedule.
Do you work for yourself? How do you plan for sick days and expected interuptions?
Nearly 5 years ago I was living a lie. I told myself that I ate well, I didn’t eat too much and I exercised as much as I had time for. The trouble was, for the seven years prior to that I was tired, lacked focus, my weight ballooned, I couldn’t climb the stairs without breaking a sweat and I was in excruciating pain in my abdomen. My bad cholesterol was high and my good cholesterol was low, my blood pressure was high, my bowels were irritated and I was on the strongest form of acid reflux inhibitors legally allowed in Canada.
I had undergone 7 years of testing that all confirmed, repeatedly, that my liver and spleen were enlarged and getting bigger every year. 7 years of radioactive dies, cameras, ultrasounds, MRI’s and none of them could tell me *why* I was sick, just that I *was* sick.
It took one bright young doctor and one blood test to diagnose what so many others had seen before but failed act on; my triglycerides were too high and I was bordering on diabetic.
It took a radical change in diet and three months time to completely reverse the illness that had been building in me for 7 years. I lost 40 pounds, no longer had acid reflux, my spleen had shrunk, my liver was starting to absorb the fat deposits it had been storing, I was alive, energetic and pain free. But I was still living a lie.
The new diet was not a change in lifestyle all together. It was just a diet, a way of eating not living and it took me almost 5 more years to figure out the second part of this equation. The diet was like taking your car to the mechanic when your breaks need fixing or when your tires are bald or the engine makes a *clunk* noise. I had only fixed what my body was presenting as an issue right then. The diet was a fix for what ailed me but it was not preventative maintenance for the future.
This year I sat through a whole season of [America's Biggest Loser](http://nbc.com/The_Biggest_Loser “Weight Loss TV Show, Pictures, Photos, Video & Episodes Online – The Biggest Loser | NBC Official Site”) with my wife. In years past I was judgmental as a once 200 lb. man who was able to get “fit” on his own. A show like that was just exploiting the weaknesses of American society and putting them on show for all to laugh at. I started to realize, however, that the show really was changing lives and really was trying to change the lifestyles of people world wide.
It was during this season that they drilled the same message in over and over and over again; diet and exercise, diet and exercise, diet and exercise! And it finally got through to me, the other half of the lie I had now been living since high school; I DO NOT EXERCISE… EVER! Being 165-170 lbs. may *look* healthy but is it healthy when walking a flight of stairs can still wind me?
For months now I have been exercising. I go for 30-45 minute walks in the morning and take another 20 minutes out of my day to do some push ups, sit ups and squats on alternating days. I have never felt better at a time when I already thought I felt my best. Diet *and* exercise are the preventative maintenance that the body needs, like taking your car in for regular oil changes, tire rotation and engine tune-ups. It’s not to *fix* what’s wrong with you now, it’s to prevent what could go wrong with you the older you get.
So here is the disheartening fact of the matter, and I hardly have a leg to stand on seeing as I was just as guilty not long ago; when I am out for my morning walk, I am the youngest one (35 yrs.) out there. I pass older men and women walking in their 60′s, I pass men and women running in their 50′s but I never pass anyone my age or younger. I know that I have been living in my own lie for more then half my life now, but is my whole generation living in that same lie? Do we all think we are too busy? Do we all think we have too much work, or that family gets in the way, or we have to get on Facebook or vent some aggression on the X-Box?
I am begging my generation to take stock of your lives and for once, think about where your *life* is going. Not your career, not your game stats, not your iTunes playlist; your *life*. Do you have the tools, the plan, the system in place to be a viable member of our generation for years to come? Are you doing preventative maintenance on your body so that our generation isn’t the sick, dying, cancer infested, diabetic generation that is going to bankrupt our healthcare systems and our economies and our morale?
It’s sad that it’s taken me 21 years to finally *understand* the message that Nike was trying to convey in 1988; “Just Do It.”
That is what I am telling you now; stop lying to yourself, stop telling yourself you don’t have time, stop telling yourself that you’re still young, stop telling yourself that you are too tired, too weak, too stressed. Just get out there and make the change now. Take control of the only future you have the power to change here and now. Change your lifestyle for the better. Eat well, exercise and just do it.
[tags]health, exercise, diet[/tags]
I like to work out every day as part of battle against aging and the effects of sitting statically in my office chair all day. One part of that daily regiment is pushups and sit ups (or crunches). I hate doing the later. Sit ups are just plain uncomfortable and unnatural, it seems, for me to do. Because of this I am always experimenting with of working the core muscles _without_ doing sit ups.
Here is one that I really like that does an awesome job of working the abs, lower back _and_ pecs all at the same time. It’s a variation of the pushup witch is ideal for me as it kills multiple muscle groups at the same time. Here is what you do:
* lay face down on the floor
* place your hands on the floor near your shoulders with your fingers pointed towards your head
* spread your legs apart so that your feet are more than shoulder width apart or as far as comfortable
* prop yourself up onto your toes and push up with your arms
* once at the top, raise one leg off the floor, keeping it spread out as far as possible
* watch your balance and attempt to do 10 pushups with your leg raised
* once you’ve completed 10, put that leg down and lift the other one for another 10 pushups
* after those 10, put both feet on the floor, legs still spread and continue doing as many pushups as you can (try to at least make it to 10)
* once you’ve finished all 30 (or collapsed), rest for 1 1/2 minutes and start again
* try to do at least 3 sets of these 30 reps
When you’ve done this you will realize just how much this is working your core. Enjoy and work out safely!