Standing = 8 less lbs a year

For those of you that know me, I am a multi-tasker.

While in a meeting in a different building at work, I found two treadmill desks. How much I would love to have a treadmill desk at work. I could walk a ton and get so much done. A colleague said he had read an article about how standing at work is like running 10 marathons a year. I had to find it online.

Lately I have been struggling with sleeping on my side and my shoulders hurting in the middle of the night. The only way I have been able to get back to sleep was to stay on my back, or try sleeping on my stomach (a new feat for me)! It has made me start to think about how much I let my shoulders slump forward, or generally how I sit at my desk during the day. I have a high desk, so I can definitely work all day standing up, and yet I often do not. It is easier to sit, and then over time I realize that I am not sitting up straight, I am hunched over, and at the end of the day my shoulders, neck, and back hurt.

I am a competitive one, so if I started tracking how long I stood at my desk each day, and if the article is right, then I would be on track. Maybe not like truly running 10 marathons, but better for my health, better for my back, shoulders, and neck, and hopefully more focused on what I am working on. My problem? I am often not at my desk and usually in meetings throughout the day, so what does that mean for me? That whenever I am at my desk, I should stand? Maybe I should move my chair out of the way, so I know if I have given into the comfort of the hunch.

We are also on a mission for finally getting a king sized bed, so maybe a new mattress will help with the side sleeping dilemma, and standing all day will help my shoulders – and heck, as the article says burn 8 pounds of fat in a year.

Tears, teeth, and that smell

Yesterday I had a dentist appointment. It was a rough day in all ways. We got some not so fun news this week, Chris was traveling, a not so fun day at work, the list goes on. I will not bore you with the details. I am in the dentist chair getting my teeth cleaned, exhausted and almost falling asleep. I keep smelling something that feels familiar and realize it is my hygienist. I told her I was having a rough day and she was great, just kept quiet and did not talk too much. In turn it allowed me to be quiet.

Behind the big green glasses they give you to block their bright light, I felt tears come to my eyes. I had just spoken to my sister on my drive over to the dentist office. The smell reminded me of something from my past which in turn made me think of my mom, thus the tears. I was having one of those “I miss my mom moments” while my head was lower than my feet in the dentist chair. “Seriously?” I am thinking. “I have tears in my eyes at the dentist?” Most likely the emotions surrounding all the events of the past few days are bringing the water works, but did it have to be at the dentist?

No one noticed. Funny how I truly hate going to the dentist, and yet at this moment of cleansing, when they scrape, floss the crap out of your gums, and prod in your mouth, that it was the hour in my day that I needed to just let go, and hide behind the green glasses under the bright light. It always amazes me how the littlest smell can set off emotions in your body, bring back memories from childhood, and make you miss someone who has been gone for 20 years. I was having a day where I wanted to curl in a ball, scream and yell, throw a tantrum, and have my mom tell me it was all going to be alright.

My sister consoled me, Chris later consoled me, but sometimes all you want is your mom. Life is real and raw and painful sometimes. People let us down. We move on, we grow thicker skin, and somehow we make it through it all. Sometimes though we just want our mom to tell us that we did all we could do, and that we are going to be alright. I am looking forward to a new day full of opportunities to be quiet and listen, dance and run, and snuggle and hold those that are dear close to me.

Oh, and I have clean teeth now.

A good night sleep

Most all of us like to cuddle, whether we are 3 months, 3 years, 30 years. The art of the cuddle is the security of connectedness, closeness, and feeling safe. Sleep is always the necessary commodity for both babies, toddlers, and their parents. Either you have a sleeper or you do not, or the child ebbs and flows from one extreme to the other. With my sister and good friend both having babies in the last 3 months, it seems to be a current topic. Co-sleeping, cribs, naps while laying on you, not sleeping unless you are near them. There are so many different philosophies to what we should and should not do, how we treat sleep schedules, whether we should co-sleep with our babies.

I honestly do not know what I will do, or how I will handle whatever situation I am in, all I do know is that every child and every situation is different. I might have selected how I want to handle sleeping, only to find out that it will not work for my child. I obviously do not have to worry about it for the moment. However, when I saw this video of this father who goes much farther than I would to get his daughter to go to sleep, I laughed. You have to watch it entirely. It is comical, and yet you can probably relate. He is probably thinking my back is going to be fun to stretch out tomorrow.

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What do you think? Would you go that far to get your baby to stop crying and go to sleep? It does show how sometimes we just want to be close to another, safe in their arms. She goes right to sleep if she is laying on him. I can relate. Sometimes just snuggled up next to Chris on the couch I can fall right to sleep. Comfort + Safety + Trust = A good night sleep.

 

Don’t sweat it.

Oh how we always sweat the small stuff. At times we are drenched. We are soaked with all the little things we have to do. Like a marathon, we have so many details to keep track of each day. Whether it is shuttling a kid from school to events each day, to all the work details, to our home repairs and upkeep, it all adds up and it is all a lot to sweat. As a runner I sweat profusely. You know I will have come back from a long run, because I am dripping. There is not a part of my running clothes that are not drenched in my sweat. I also stink like no one can imagine (well Chris can because he OFTEN mentions how bad I reek.)

I also often sweat the small stuff. It is hard not to as all the small stuff rolls up into the big stuff. I care about it all. I care about how someone is treated. I care about project outcomes. I care about how individuals feel. I care about how I make others feel. I care about being blunt, transparent, and real. I care too much. I sweat it all, and yet, there are so many things that I do not care about one bit.

So – how do I differentiate what to sweat and not to sweat? I do not have a formula. I trust my intuition. I think about my audience. I talk to myself. I talk to Chris. I fail. I succeed. I work too hard. I lose sleep. I try to do too much. I care. Is that a strength or a weakness? I am passionate about each and every aspect. How individuals are treated. How a project is tracking. How things could be improved. It all matters. It is all important.

Yet, so often the very issue that we are sweating is not what we should focus on at all. Maybe we care too much about one individual and they are not even paying attention at all. Maybe our focus should be more on our own world, life, and needs and yet we neglect them completely. Maybe we are completely ignoring what we should truly be focusing on it, but we cannot see it because we have blinders on. We are sweating in all the wrong places.

Do you sweat at all? Or is life cool and chill for you?

Think Dirty

I have a newfound interest in the products that I put on my body. Are they worth touching my skin? What are their ingredients? Would I eat what I put on my hair or skin? With my recent venture into “no poo” I have continued to explore other natural options for skin care and even found something the other day for brushing your teeth with coconut oil. (I have not tried it, but will let you know how it works out).

Have you ever thought about the fact that your skin is the largest organ on your body, and yet we feed it with harmful chemicals every day? Between your hair shampoo, conditioner, shaving cream, and styling products, to your body wash, lotion, your toothpaste, and, if you are a woman, the makeup you put on your face, you are potentially adding chemicals to your body and you might not even know it.

Bring on “Think Dirty.” An app I found last weekend that allows you to scan a product in your bathroom, at the store, your friend’s house, what have you and find out from their “Dirty Meter” how toxic the product is for you. I love this idea. I am always trying to remember which sulfates are bad (most are horrible) and which are okay. Sulfates. Parabens. The list goes on for all the ingredients you should watch for when purchasing a product. What I find more complex is that so often the ingredient list can only be understood if you can decipher the periodic table of elements. They are in another language, with names so long it is hard to really know what is good and what is bad for you.

Think Dirty is free and even has a modern and sleek interface. Just scan the barcode on the product with the scanner within the app. You can then save products to a “Dirty List” or a “Clean List” so you can remember where specific products fall when you go back to the store. There is even some wit within the app. To get you to sign up, they say, “Is your bathroom Kardashian-filthy?” Clever. I spent a bit of time scanning my products, and even my Whole Foods, Trader Joe’s “organic” products resulted in 8-10 (7-10 is considered Dirty) on their Dirty Meter. Yikes.

Be safe, clean yourself responsibly, and take the pulse of what you put on your body.