Sunday, July 31, 2005

Strange Day

I had the strangest day today. R's sons came over for a visit, and we all went up to Parksville to spend the day at the beach. When we got there, we discovered that there was a car show going on at the beach we had intended to visit, so we backtracked to Rathtrevor Park and went for a walk on that beach. Then R and one of the sons went for a bike ride (on R's bike and mine) while the other son and I read and relaxed. After lunch, both sons went for a bike ride while R and I did the dishes and got ready to drive back to the ferry. All told, everybody got to go for a bike ride but me. By the time we came home it was too hot to go riding, and by the time I finished shopping for and cooking and eating and cleaning up after dinner, I had lost interest. Ah, well. Tomorrow is another day. I don't start work until 10:15AM, so there will be lots of time for an early morning ride. We did have a good visit, and I don't suppose the world will end just because I skip exercising.

Besides, I just noticed that I didn't finish bragging about yesterday's cycling. R and I did go out in the evening. He led the way, and we rode another - approximately - 14-15 km, so I'm officially calling it a 25 km day, including my morning ride. Not too shabby.

p.s. This is my new hairstyle - actually, back to my old hairstyle - much more suited to an active life than having long hair was.

Saturday, July 30, 2005

Inch by inch

Step by step - that's how I'm approaching this training. I took a rest day yesterday, and this morning I felt a little wimpy. I didn't bother setting my 30-minute timer, because I thought I would be making a stop at the supermarket for a piece of fruit. As it turned out, I didn't do that until I had got all the way up to JinglePot and Westwood and backtracked to the JinglePot store. I went, again, a couple of blocks farther than I had the time before.

I was out shopping this afternoon, and took a detour to check my cycling distance. According to my car's odometer, the trip from JP and W home is about 5.5 km, so my round trip was about 11 km - nothing at all, by normal cycling standards, but a lot for me.

In a few minutes, R and I are going to go out on our bikes - probably for an hour's ride again. I'm really looking forward to it. If we do an hour's ride, that will make my day's cycling total at least 22 km - maybe 25, which is what I would like to be doing on a daily basis - someday. R worked today, so he hasn't had any exercise yet. I hope I hold out.

Thursday, July 28, 2005


I just went out for my morning ride (I don't have to start work until 10:45 today, so I have time for a morning ride). Yesterday, I went about three blocks farther in my half-hour outward journey than I had the time before (Monday, I think). I decided that another three blocks or so would put me at the pub on the other side of the Parkway, so I set a 30-minute alarm again, and tried to hustle a bit more. I made it! 30 minutes to the pub, stop a moment to take a slug of water from my bottle, and 22 minutes home. Mind you, when I went out yesterday it was only about 7am - today, I lounged around until 8:15, so the last part of the ride was a little warmish. Tomorrow I shall try to remember that. I was trying not to get moving *too* early, as I have to work until 7pm, but I think that was an error in judgment.

Anyway, I'm very pleased with myself. Tomorrow, I'll go out earlier, and I'll set a goal a little farther up the hill.

Wednesday, July 27, 2005

I'm making progress

At least I think I am. Two days ago, I got my bike out, set my cell phone alarm for 30 minutes hence, and started cycling toward the Aquatic Centre. I actually got a few blocks farther before the alarm went off. I then cycled home, and to my surprise the return trip also took 30 minutes (I had expected that because it was mostly downhill, it would be quicker).

Last night R and I cycled to the supermarket to get fixings for dinner. We were gone about one hour and ten minutes, and only about ten minutes of that was spent inside the supermarket. I enjoyed the trip, and didn't even feel particularly tired afterward.

This morning I made the Aquatic Centre trip again, but this time I got another several blocks along before the alarm sounded, and the return trip took me only 17 minutes. I think I'm developing some muscles in my legs!

Tomorrow morning I'll do it again (before the heat sets in!) and try to get even farther along in my 30 minute window.

Have I mentioned how glad I am to have bought my bike?

Sunday, July 24, 2005


We finally have summer, and I'm loving it. It's not too hot - just blue-sky-puffy-cloud-sunshiny warm. Yesterday we drove the Turtle up to Parksville (about 40 minutes north of Nanaimo), parked at the beach, and spent the day cycling, lying on a blanket in the sun, reading, chatting with passersby, and generally appreciating the day. Today R had to work, so I cycled to the pool, did a water pilates class, and cycled home. I figured that if Lance Armstrong could win seven Tours de France, the least I could do was ride my bike for a few minutes.

The only negative part of the morning was the presence at the class of a woman who made me feel as if I'd been spirited back to fifth grade. She complained loudly about everything, especially about the use of the word "pilates" to describe the class, which she said did not conform to the True.Pilates.Rules. She insisted on instructing the instructor in the Correct Procedure. Afterwards, one of the other women asked me whether I had any problem with the way the class was run. I assured her that I loved it, just the way it was, and I made a point of leaving a note to that effect at the front desk. One of the other women in the dressing room apparently knows the complainer, and said she'll probably make a great fuss and try to have the class stopped (or insist that the name be changed). Some people shouldn't be allowed out in public. I think that if she'd said one more word, all we little old ladies would have ganged up and drowned her.

When R came home, we took the dog south of town to another beachside park. We spent a little while there, enjoying the cool ocean breeze; then R rode away on his bicycle. The dog and I followed, and when R had had enough cycling, we picked him up and came home. I have to work tomorrow, but I have Tuesday off. I hope this weather holds! Even tomorrow, I don't start work until 10:15am, so I have time to get in a little cycling first thing in the morning.

Thursday, July 21, 2005

All Grown Up

When I picked up my mail today. I saw that an old friend in Ontario had sent me a page from the local paper in which a young (36) woman named C was profiled. The article included photos. My first reaction was shock.

I met C when she was three. My daughter and she were toddlers together. I must have seen C when she was a teenager, but somehow I remember her as about an 8 year old. I haven't seen any of the family members for about twenty years, so of course they've all been frozen in time, still young - even though I've grown old.

Now I read that C has had a hard life, but she's a fighter, and things seem to be coming together for her. Great news. I also read that her brother owns his own restaurant. Oops. Shock #2. I remember when he was born. He owns his own restaurant?

I'm still shaking my head. When I finish gaping at the article, I'll forward it to my daughter. I can hear her reaction now!

Saturday, July 16, 2005

The Turtle's Journey

<------- This is the Turtle. The photo was taken in Victoria, when we were on our way to the Olympic Peninsula some months ago. That was before we bought our bicycles, and the rack for carrying them on the Turtle's back. We evolve.

I've just come back from my walk -combining a trip to feed my absent friend's cat* with a 15-minute walk uphill to her house and a 15-minute walk downhill, bloody and annoyed, to get home. Reading Charlie's posts about his fitness programme has got me thinking very seriously about my lifestyle. I drive all day - usually four days a week, of late - and on the days when I work, I get virtually no exercise. I'm 58 years old. If I don't take care of myself, I may die in the saddle, as it were - and that prospect has no appeal for me.

So here I am, jumping on the blogwagon with Charlie. ( )

*( I have a hard time judging her patience level. When she's finished wanting to be petted, she draws blood. The petting window is anywhere from 20 seconds to 5 minutes. Other than that, we get along fine.)