Author Archives: Mary R.

One step forward, two steps back…

So I finally talked to my doctor about my bad knee, and how it aches and swells when I walk a lot. She’s sending me to an orthopedic doctor because she can tell there is something wrong with it. So that appointment is week after next, and we’ll get that settled and work on strengthening it back up.

So of COURSE this is the perfect time for me to hurt my other leg. And I can’t figure out what I’ve done. Yesterday I got down onto my knees in the floor to play with the cat, and my left leg (without the bad knee) felt funny. I figured it was just my jeans pulling weird or something, it wasn’t pain, just weird.

Then today I was in the floor again while I was cleaning and it obviously is the muscle in my leg. My husband thinks I’ve pulled it, which makes no sense to me because I haven’t done anything that would pull it. But it hurts and I’m getting grumpy because every time I take a step to fix one thing, another thing goes wrong. I’m tired of my body being too broken to get anything done.

Posted in blog. Tagged with , , .

Making good new habits

It’s so impossible to make a habit. Though I need to stop trying to make more than one at a time.

I’ve mostly been doing well with eating when I get up. Though I haven’t fixed my sleep schedule yet, so calling it “breakfast” doesn’t really work. But I get up and drink a shake and that’s alright. Except when I don’t remember to buy milk, or in the case of last Friday I was leaving town so there was no point in buying milk.

But the thing is, if I get thrown off by even the slightest bit, not only do I end up ruining that day but several days after. Friday I had no milk, so I got up and the plan was to eat something else. But I didn’t find anything I wanted and so I just didn’t.

And that knocked me off kilter again and I still haven’t gotten back from it. Hopefully tomorrow.

Sleep is the same way. I’ll be doing well, going to bed by midnight, getting up by 10 (those are the vague times I set for myself, because I rarely sleep that entire time) and then one night I’ll need to stay up for work or I’ll sleep in one day because I don’t feel well and boom, right back to square one.

It’s frustrating. I’m starting to feel like I have no will power to actually make a change in my life. I’m not sure how to get that either. I know all the logical health reasons I have to change all of these things. I know how much better I feel when I am taking care of myself.

And yet the second it becomes difficult, I drop off again. Not to mention that it always requires conscious thought. I’d like the whole “drinking a bottle of water a day” thing to be something I do without thinking much. I just get a bottle from the fridge and drink it as I work and done. But I have to really make myself. I have to actively make myself go to bed and get up, because I don’t get tired and I don’t wake up wanting to get out of bed.

I’ve got no idea how to fix any of that.

Posted in blog. Tagged with , , .

Skin care

Skin care is on my mind these days, because I just went to a dermatologist to get my yearly skin check, which I haven’t done for a while because my insurance was terrible.

The good news is that I got a clean bill of health.

The bad news is that once again I was reminded that I can’t really go out in the sun that much, because my skin is so fair and I have such a high risk for skin cancer. In addition, my skin is very sensitive so I have to worry about what kind of sunscreen I’m using.

I just picked up an Aveeno moisturizer that has sunscreen in it. But I’ve also been talking with the one of the ladies at the dermatologist about my skin care routine, trying to repair all the damage years of neglect and harsh treatments have caused it. On the one hand, these treatments and products seem like a good idea and like they’ll be good for me in the long run. But I wonder how in the world a person is supposed to stay clean and take care of their skin on the trail.

Obviously I’ll have to pack a massive amount of sunscreen and apply it regularly, which I’ve talked about before. But what about just washing my face? Is this trip going to undo any progress I make between now and then? I can’t imagine packing a multiple product skin care regime in my pack, so it’s something to think about.

But in the mean time, I still haven’t really gotten into the habit of walking every day. Sleep and my sleep schedule continue to be a problem, though I’m finally going to a doctor about that issue too, my blood tests are in a few days. So here’s hoping we figure it out and I can start dealing with that so I can start really training!

Posted in blog. Tagged with , , .

It’s always about the money

One of the things I’ve been worried about, that I’ve talked about before, is the cost of this trip. So I’ve been trying to get my debt taken care of and start to save some money. Which isn’t easy when you are trying to make a movie at the same time.

I frequently resist using up my entire savings to pay off a credit card, even though my interest rate is pretty high and my savings earn almost no interest. I always worry, what about emergencies?

But this week I was doing some budget stuff and saw a spot on my credit card statement that said how much I’ve paid in interest this year.  Then I looked up how much I earned from my savings.

The difference was staggering, so I sent a payment to the credit card immediately. That will pay off one card, and leave me with one other one, which is in a zero percent interest period.

Dealing with money is boring and I know not quite the point of this blog, but until I get my finances under control I can’t buy any gear, so it’s on my mind.

Posted in blog. Tagged with .

Small progress

So, one thing about eating breakfast (or drinking it) every day, I’m now hungry a lot more of the time. Which is what often happens when I try to eat breakfast.

I’ve had a few days where I get to a meal time and I don’t feel like eating, but having the shakes in the house means that I can just make a shake instead and at least get some nutrition. And I’ve bought some more juice and smoothie stuff to drink and get more out of that instead of drinking soda all the time.

My plan to track my food and drinks isn’t working though. I’m not entirely sure how to manage that, something computerized might work, like a webpage where I can just check stuff off or whatever but I’m not sure the best system for that. Most trackers include WAY more information than I care about. I don’t want to make it a more complicated deal than it is, I want to track what time I eat my meals and snacks, if I took my vitamins, and how much fiber I got that day. The notebook I have is perfect for it, I guess I just need to concentrate on it more and make a bigger effort.

I do have a doctor’s appointment finally to do a physical, so I can at least get a good base line of how my health is right now as I start all these changes. And I can talk to her about them, if I get a chance or remember to. I’m not very good with doctors, they make me nervous and I forget to tell them anything. Or they don’t listen and I get withdrawn and don’t want to talk anymore because it doesn’t seem to be helping. But this doctor seems nice so I’ll give it a try.

I also have been going to bed almost on time and getting up almost on time for a few days now. If it lasts a week then I think I’m going to start back on my plans for walking, maybe going for a walk first thing in the morning right after my breakfast.

Posted in blog. Tagged with , .

Progress

So last week I wrote that my goals were to eat something breakfast like every day and to keep track of my food/nutrition better.

I’ve managed the breakfast, and I’m actually finding that I’m kind of looking forward to it when I wake up now, so I’m already starting to develop an appetite when I wake up. This is very good news. I still am not at the “forget the shake, give me FOOD” part but craving the shakes is something.

I’ve also started drinking juice that has veggies in it instead of just fruit juice, which is good.

As for logging things, I’m not doing so well at that. I was for about three days and then July 4th happened and I forgot and it just has kind of not worked out like I hoped. I’ll keep trying though!

I’m spending too much on groceries already though with this trying for more variety and better foods thing. Which is the way of it I guess.

Posted in blog. Tagged with , .

Newest plans

So, I wrote last week that I’m not going to try to figure out this hike thing until I figure out my health.

Basic first steps this week:
-drinking some kind of nutrition shake for breakfast every day. Basically, I never eat breakfast because I wake up most mornings feeling groggy and sick and hating food. But that means I’m getting less nutrients than I need and it’s not good for my body, so, shakes. Been doing this for about five days now, seems to be doing alright. Yesterday and today I got hungry for lunch and dinner on a more normal schedule, so that’s something.

-Tracking my food/vitamins/drinks in a daily log. I based it off of a daily checklist that Cyn sent me a link to, but I’m putting it in a small notebook that is easy to carry with me. It’ll help me keep track of taking my supplements, I write down what times I eat my meals, and I’m tracking my fiber intake (the number one issue with my diet vs. my diagnosed health problems). Plus the amount of drinks in general.

I’m still too low on drinks and hours of sleep, and I need to find 5 more grams of fiber each day in general so far, but having these numbers should help.

Now to just be able to fix my sleep issues…

Posted in blog. Tagged with , , .

Stuff and junk

I basically have nothing to add this week. I’ve generally decided that my first step is not actually to walk every day (though that is PART of my first step). My first step should be to take care of these health issues that are making everything more difficult for me.

So, in order of importance, I have to figure out how to deal with:
1. My issues with sleep, and getting on a sleep schedule that works for me.
2. My problems with not being hydrated enough ever.
3. Eating a more well balanced diet in general and learning to love some trail foods even off the trail.
4. The migraines and light sensitivity.

Most of these I can’t get real medical intervention for until December, because my insurance would consider them pre-existing conditions (yeah, we don’t need health care reform). But I can take a few steps myself.

My the hardest part is figuring out this sleep problem. It’s three decades worth of problems and I’ve tried to solve it in multiple ways but just never quite manage. I know every single tip in the book on sleep hygiene and everything people have to say about how to get better sleep. I know them all, trust me.

So now I just have to figure out what little piece of the puzzle I’m missing…and it’s probably just will power.

Posted in blog. Tagged with , , .

Everything costs something

I’m starting to worry about the costs involved in this hike. Not just the costs for gear and food, which will be substantial, but then there’s the fact that for around six months while I’m on the trail I won’t be earning any income.

Of course, my bills don’t stop while I’m out. Sure, I won’t be buying random stuff because I won’t be at stores. But I also still have to pay my health insurance (it becomes MORE important at that point). I still have to keep paying my student loans. My husband will be living in our house paying our mortgage.

So now I feel like I have to save up not just the money for gear and food, but also six months worth of my contributions to our bills. Which is difficult because right now I’m still in the hole (majorly) from my last film project.

This is definitely a “what was I thinking” kind of day.

Posted in blog. Tagged with , , .

Weather

I think the hardest thing is going to be dealing with the summer heat. Which is making me wonder if going Northbound will actually be better. But the thing is, no matter what, I’ll be hiking in the summer. There’s no way around that part, and it will take all summer no matter what.

So I just have to figure out how to deal. I’m sure better clothing will help, stuff that is designed to help you keep cool on hot days. Wearing shorts might help, but I’m not sure if I can handle doing shorts and being terrified of ticks.

But going out this weekend just to walk the couple hundred feet or so to the Farmer’s Market and back was almost insufferable. The bright light is definitely part of it, and I think that won’t be as big a deal because I’m familiar with the type of woods and it’s as much bright direct sunlight.

It’s possible having a destination will help too, because at the Farmer’s Market it’s a lot of standing around and looking at things, and being crowded by people (which I don’t handle well).

But I’m definitely at a phase of “I don’t know if I can do this.” And I need to figure out a way out of it.

Posted in blog. Tagged with , .