Another Gym Day & Hip Update

I made it back to the gym again today! Woohoo! I did another 3/4 mile at 5.3 and then decided I just couldn’t take trudging along any longer! I always do speed work on the treadmill! It’s actually the reason I like the treadmill! Take that away and put me running a mile in 12 minutes and no thanks. I do it to warm up a bit and to get my mind in gym mode, but how boring these days.

I did a few sumo deadlifts at 95#. That was as high as I could go, and I couldn’t touch the weights to the ground because my hip hurt whenever I got closer to the ground. Then I held onto a 35# weight and stepped about 18 or so off the ground onto a platform, and I tried to do some close legged squats with my feet out in front of me, but that ended up not feeling great for my hip either. I did some leg machines since I wasn’t satisfied with my leg workout and then did some dips, pull ups, hammer curls, and push ups. Nothing fancy today and definitely not anything in depth. I’m obviously not working to gain anything at this point- I just really don’t want to lose all of my muscle while my hip is healing.

Also, I really don’t want to get out of the habit of going to the gym. Once I get out of the gym routine, it’s much harder to get me back into it! I’ll put it off for 2-3 months and completely lose all of my muscle! Since I was just at a point where I wanted to go every day that I wasn’t working and I really liked that, I want to try to stick with it, even if I can only go trudge along for a slow mile and then do a few things. I mean, I’m not going to go every day- I’m still trying to recover- but I just want to make sure I don’t lose sight of going. I also think that mine and Jon’s lives are going to get busier in the coming year, and I want to make sure it’s already enough of a habit that when life gets crazy, the gym isn’t the first thing to go every single time, and then when it does have to go, I get right back to it.

I will end up seeing a doctor for this if it’s not getting better. It has gotten better, but the lingering pain is not improving at all now, and there’s still point tenderness also. However, I have changes coming up with my insurance in a few weeks, so there’s no reason to even start the process right now. By the time I found a doctor out here, went and saw him, and had an MRI preauthorized, I’d already have changed insurance companies! No use at this point, but perhaps when I get back from Oregon.

Anyway, my evening was spent cooking for my 3 days of work and I chatted with Jon for a bit. I’m about to go hang out with Roy (the little boy where I live) cause he gets so excited to hang out with me! I’ve been waking up earlier all week so I have a feeling I’ll wake up in time to make it to the gym before work tomorrow! Have a good evening guys!

Crater Lake, Newbury Volcanoes, Painted Hills

My trip to Crater Lake, the Newbury Volcanoes, and the Painted Hills was totally not what I expected!

I checked in with you guys from the hotel on Saturday night, right before I had a Forensic Files marathon and then couldn’t sleep! Normally I don’t get spooked from Forensic Files, but I think my secluded hotel room had me convinced that there were dead bodies under my bed and that a killer was about to start pounding on my door. Needless to say, I didn’t get much sleep that night.

I was super excited to head out on Sunday morning for Crater Lake! It’s been at the top of my list now for a few years, so despite being super exhausted, I was pumped.

I noticed on the drive in that hardly anybody was taking the road, which was the only road that was supposed to be open into the park at this time of the year. Then I passed a sign that said “North Rim: Open. South Rim: Open.” Perfect! I wanted to head out of the North end at that the end of the day and this would make that drive even shorter!

As I drove on, I noticed snow on top of some of the mountains in the distance. As I kept on going, I started seeing some snow on the ground in front of me…

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I kept on heading in since the roads were plowed, but realized when I got into the park that not much was going to be going on! The visitors center had one other car there and the girl working said only the cafe was open at the top of the road. I mentioned that I was wanting to see the Newbury Volcanoes afterwards and she mentioned that they were most likely closed because of snow also! I was hoping she would be wrong… I decided to head on up to Crater Lake to at least get some good views, even if it was snowy! I could just walk the rim anyway!

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That was my view. I could hear the water, but the wind was crazy up there and everything just looked white. I could barely see anything and was totally bummed out! It was still neat to see the snow on all the trees and it was very serene, but… the water! The views! Instead, my hands froze and I trudged through snow (in my new waterproof hiking shoes, at least), just to look at even more white. No point in continuing my trek just to stare into an endless sea of white.

I decided to head to the Newbury Volcanoes and see if that was even open or not so that I’d have a better idea of what my Monday had in store for me! It took about 2 hours to get there and again, I noticed snow at the top of the mountain range from the bottom. I decided to head up anyway and was hopeful that I’d see at least a few good views!

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Paulina Lake. That was about it. I attempted to go on to the next lake, but I ended up having to back down the road in order to get to a place where I could turn around because the road became too slick for my little car. With no cell signal, steep drop offs, and a Civic, I decided that we had enough of the snow.

I got into Bend and took a quick nap before heading out to a park I found online!

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The park had some beautiful views and I loved the feel of downtown Bend! Seeing towns like that just makes me want to sell our house and head out west somewhere! It’s breathtaking! I enjoyed some dinner at a local place (Spork) and then headed back to the hotel to relax!

I woke up to sun today, so I was really excited about my day! It hasn’t been sunny in well over a week and I need sun in my life on the regular to be happy! I had a quick breakfast and then went to Pilot Butte for some views!

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I have been to some pretty amazing places in my life (Australia, Greece, Croatia…), but nothing amazes me like seeing snow capped volcanoes (I was told that calling them “mountains” is confusing and that quite a few people actually have no idea that “Mt” Hood is actually a volcano… Pretty much all the mountains here are volcanoes…)! It still takes my breath aware every time I see Mt Hood, and I can see Mt Hood all day long when it’s not too overcast!

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Ahhh, Mt Hood, so pretty! Thankfully my long lens is able to capture the mountains fairly up close. The pictures really don’t do it justice! I always try to send Jon pictures from my phone of Mt Hood in the background, but you can barely see it on a phone. In reality, it looks like a beast.

After Pilot Butte, I headed over to the Painted Hills! I knew that this wouldn’t be snowed out and since it was such a gorgeous day, I was really beyond excited.

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It’s always exciting to see some water along the way! I love all bodies of water, but they’re even better when they have mountains around them.

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Of course, I also had to enjoy my cup of Dutch Bros, in their cute little holiday cups! Definitely going to miss this coffee when I leave here! I was glad to finally make it to the Painted Hills, and when I stopped to use the restroom, a guy in the parking lot (we were the only two cars) told me that this place was definitely worth the drive (he saw my Georgia plates). So I was very excited!

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After all that snow I encountered, this place did not disappoint! It was gorgeous and it was such a beautiful day!

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As I trekked through this scenery, I really just thought about how amazing life is. In 28 years, I’ve traveled to Italy (twice), Switzerland, Spain, Greece, Croatia, China, Hong Kong, Australia, and Kuwait and Iraq (if you count those two), plus I’m getting to travel all over the US now. So many people never take the opportunity to travel and I just make it happen, year after year. I’ve seen so many different coastlines, mountain ranges, desserts, cities… I absolutely love being able to do this and hope to never stop traveling.

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After thoroughly enjoying my time there, I decided to head back to Washington (I stay just over the Columbia River in Washington). Unfortunately, the only signal I could get was just barely enough to load a map, so I ended up screen shutting a map in order to make my way home. It must have been the long way to go, cause it took me 5 1/2 hours to get back and was supposed to be less than 3. Oh well! I got to see some more amazing scenery!

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I actually got to see a ton of mountain tops from afar (Mt Rainier, impressively enough, but it was tiny, Mt Adams, Mt Jefferson…), but this is about the distance that I am on a daily basis from Hood, so this one wins. Besides, the gloom is back, so also fairly accurate. Hood is usually fogged out on rainy days though. Not the best composition for a picture, but I never want to be the one to pull off on the narrow shoulder in the gorge just to take photos.

And with that, my trip has come to an end! I’m back a day earlier than planned, but this cold is kicking my butt, so I plan on having a relaxing day tomorrow before heading back to 3 days straight at work!

 

 

New Shoes & Traveling to South Oregon

I got up at 9am today and decided to try and get this travelin’ show on the road! I had a fairly quick breakfast and headed out at 11, however, quickly realized I left my deodorant at home! I wanted a new camera lens cleaner also, so I made a pit stop by an insane Wal-Mart and then got on the road, only to make a second stop at REI in Salem! I returned the hiking boots I bought and kept the shoes, so I was pretty happy to get that $195 back! (The hiking shoes were on clearance for $75.)

There happened to be a Ross right by REI and I decided to stop in there as well. When I went to the Ross by me yesterday, they had Brooks Pure Drifts for $25, but they only had a 6.5 left and they were just a tad bit too small. I was super bummed! This Ross had only one pair left too, but in a 7!!! I was going to wear them for work and still may, but I don’t wear my work shoes for anything other than work (yah no, that stepping in blood and urine thing) and I might like these shoes too much to dedicate to the hospital. They’re so light, have a wider fit, don’t smash the tops of my feet, and they have a really minimal drop. I could easily use them for hiking shoes and stop getting my Minimus shoes all dirty. Or the other way around. I actually almost bought these shoes for $60 a few weeks ago and talked myself out of it because I was feeling cheap.

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Moving on with the trip! When I stopped to get gas, I was super excited to see the sign for this coffee! Definitely my new favorite!

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The drive really was not very pleasant! It was so ridiculously windy for over an hour and my car was blowing everywhere! I drove through the Cascades which was awesome, but it literally rained 85% of my drive! I had to make a quick pit stop on the side of the road for a potty break (no bathrooms in the mountains), and I was fortunate enough to find a fairly decent view when it was just barely drizzling!

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I actually saw tons of bright yellow aspens, but it was way too wet to get out and take pictures.

I ended up getting to Klamath Falls around 6:30pm and headed to a sushi place with 5 stars on yelp. Yelp is unreliable in small towns cause people just don’t know good food! I also waited for 25 minutes in an almost empty restaurant for two simple rolls. My food was slightly disappointing (I hate really sticky rice and that’s exactly what I got!) but I was starving so I ate it. I was also freezing since it’s in the 40s and rainy. Not used to this weather! I stopped by Sports Authority for thick hiking socks since tomorrow is a high of 49! Ah! Cold feet!

Now I’m just hanging out at a hotel, thinking about getting ready for bed, enjoying some Forensic Files (my hotel ritual) and then getting some sleep before Crater Lake tomorrow! The weather just changed today and shows sun in my forecast for tomorrow (thank goodness I moved away from the coast), so I’m really hoping that stays true! I am so tired of this rain!

Also, my hip was a bit more painful today, but I’m not sure if it’s because of my gym time yesterday or because I sat in the car and it got stiff for 6 hours today. Either way, I skipped the gym this morning on purpose so it could have a rest day before hiking! We’ll see how the next few days go with it!

Everybody Poops! But What Does Your Poo Tell You?

I’m going to do something really unladylike here. I’m going to talk about poop and then I’m going to post this and go to sleep before I change my mind cause the world doesn’t need to know about my poop.

The thing about poop is that it reflects upon your digestive tract, so everybody really should pay a lot of attention to their poop. In the last few weeks, I’ve been eating tons of sugar and tons of dairy. I’ve mentioned before that I cut out my Noosa (yogurt) all together, even though it’s probably one of the best things I’ve ever eaten. I noticed I was feeling much better when I wasn’t eating it. I was pooping less. I wasn’t feeling such an urge to go all the time, and I had way less gas (I can talk about poop, but hate talking about gas).

I’ve been eating Noosa every day at work again because it’s easy and it’s good. I get a lot of breaks at this job and it’s easy to just eat something cold instead of having to heat something up and then eat it (10 minutes is too short for that). I’ve also been snacking on a lot of chocolate lately. I just bought a gallon of Tillamook Fireside S’mores ice cream (to die for!) and I’m already almost done with the whole gallon! And aside from the chocolate/ice cream combo goin’ on, my Noosa has 27g of sugar just in one container!

After two weeks of eating all this mess, I’ve been noticing an increase in gas over the last few days. Today, I noticed today that there was a lot more clear “jelly” in my poop. I’m quite in tune with my normal poo, and this is not it! Your intestines creates lubricant to help everything move through nice and smoothly, but when the lining of your intestines becomes irritated, it creates more of this lubrication. So clearly, something is causing this irritation in my intestines. I can take my guess and assume it’s a combination of all of this mess I’m eating! Oh, and I’ve had two beers in the last two weeks too- also abnormal for me.

I’m going to attempt to really clean up what I’m eating. I felt so fantastic when I ate Moo Paleo (but I only ate small amounts of cheese- I seem to do fine with cheese), but I also felt absolutely miserable when I strayed from that diet. It would take one muffin to have me up with palpitations and feeling sick all night long! (Oddly enough, after being a vegetarian for 13 years, when I went back to eating meat, I never once got sick and always assumed that I would.) And I don’t need “gluten free.” I just don’t really do well with processed foods at all and have just been ignoring it because I’m surrounded by delicious food in Portland!

Also, when I decrease my veggie intake and eat too much bread (which is not super common, but happens every once in awhile), I get super constipated. It really only takes about 2 days to mess up my BMs if I start eating bread (on sandwiches or an English muffin at breakfast, usually when I’m road tripping), and I can feel disgusting and constipated for days after I start eating normal again. Not to mention that my stomach gets hugely bloated when I eat grains.

I even had a short stint of drinking avocado smoothies every morning. After a few days, my gallbladder threw a dang fit. I ignored it and kept on drinking my smoothies every morning (they were so filling! I could go till 1-2pm at work without needing a snack), and about 20 minutes after I finished, my gallbladder would get severe pain and then an hour later I’d be having the biggest BMs of my life. I’m pretty sure I could have had a colonoscopy on a daily basis without needing any other prep for it. Finally I had enough and quit drinking them, no matter how good or filling they were.

So, the moral of this story is really not all about my poop, but just to really pay attention to what your body is telling you. It always surprises me when people discuss their bowel issues with me and then act like I’m a fool for telling them that it’s probably what they’re eating, or when they act like they can’t stop eating a certain way. Really? You can stop. Your poop is a direct reflection of what you eat. For that matter, so is your entire GI tract. It responds to what you put into it. If you notice something seems off, don’t do it. It can take 14 days for the inflammation in your GI tract to go down after you go eating something it doesn’t like, so is it really worth it if it causes that many problems? (Luckily, I just get a little gas and jelly poop, not severe pain at this point.) I read a lot of blogs about “intuitive eating” that never even touch on this topic, and I think your poop (and urine, for that matter) are really good indicators of how intuitively somebody is actually eating.

 

1st Day Back at the Gym!

I went to the gym today! WOOHOO! I struggled through waking up at 10:30 in order to go get my fingerprints done, but I knew it had to get done. I was so tired and unmotivated, but I somehow managed to convince myself to just go look at a gym today and sign up for the membership. Then I managed to convince myself to just get some sort of workout done!

I ran 1/2 mile at 5.3-5.5 and 0 incline. I was going to go for a mile but I was so bored with running that slow that I quit. I couldn’t increase it at all because if I got any faster, my hip was “there.” Not painful, but noticeable. I did Russian deadlifts and felt comfortable as long as I kept them under 100#. When I went over that, it was more painful. I actually felt like my hip was pretty stiff and it was irritated walking around towards the end, but it feels back to normal now. No more pain than before I went at all. I’m just bummed at how limited my gym capabilities are and am really looking forward to this being behind me!

I got some Dutch Bros. coffee after and the gym + coffee managed to put a little pep in my step.

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With all this dreary weather and nearly constant drizzle, it’s hard to get anything done other than sleeping in and sitting on the couch!

I had to go grab some things at Target and ended up buying two shirts and then went to Ross and bought a pair of shoes (like I need black booties- probably not- but I will eventually wear them). I grabbed some food at Whole Foods and am now hanging out at home!

Juliette and Roy just got home, so I’m going to go visit with them. I’m hoping to get up early and maybe go get a hike done. I plan on heading out Sunday for Crater Lake!

Kids, kids, kids!

I’M SICK! Ah, wtf. Not miserably. But I have that thing going on in my throat that needs to be surgically removed and it got infected again this week. I’m on antibiotics for it and that part feels better, but now my entire throat hurts. Can’t win! I’m feeling pretty run down after 39 hours of work in the last 3 days and staying up so late every night, but I’m beyond excited to have today off work (and the next 5 days!). I slept till 1pm and am now eating, about to shower, and then go check out the gym. I’m holding off on working out today cause of feeling under the weather and lacking motivation, but tomorrow I’ll get it together.

I was super excited to talk to Jon for an hour after waking up! There may be some changes in our household (not pregnant!) coming up, so I’m looking forward to that! I’ll make some announcements after final decisions are made, but I will say, I am rooting for change! Yeah, definitely no babies.

But speaking of babies, Jon has said he’s pretty sure we’ll have kids, which means that I have to have kids. Although I don’t know that I want them, I will have them if he does (and I’m sure I’ll love them too). Now that I know they’re probably in my somewhat near future, I’m feeling like I’m living my very last days. It’s kind of like I’m dying… Because my no-kid days are coming to an end, and I really love my life without kids. I’ll be honest, I think on a daily basis how awesome my life is and how incredibly lucky I am to be TRAVELING FOR A LIVING! I’m dying to get to Iceland pre-kid (I WILL NOT HAVE KIDS IF I HAVE NOT GONE TO ICELAND!), Germany, the Netherlands, Machu Picchu, the Swiss Alps, and all these places just can’t happen once we start poppin’ them babies out! Life as I know it will be o.v.e.r. and that is really a scary and depressing thought. But I know that I will adjust to mom-life and be so glad I had kids one day (at least I really hope so, but how many parents say they really wish they didn’t have kids? that’s the only thought that keeps me going). What if these are my last 2-3 childless years?! THAT’S SO SHORT! Guys, it’s already the end of October! I don’t even know where this year has gone! Two years will just fly by and then I’ll be a giganto pregnant lady wearing children’s maternity clothing! I need to stop before I have a panic attack.

That was totally not the point of this. I didn’t even plan on talking about kids.

I found these awesome snacks at Whole Foods! They do have cane sugar in them (I believe) so they aren’t totally healthy, but they are seriously delicious:

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And alas, a Tom picture, cause he’s so adorable and it melts my heart when Jon sends me adorable cat pictures!

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Time to go shower, clean the kitchen, and head out to get some Dutch Bros coffee and go take a look at the gym I plan on joining! I may try to find an outdoor store so I can look for some hiking boots since the ground here is always so wet! Since I have 6 days off, I’m taking today easy and just catching up my energy so that I can start a day of exploring tomorrow! I’ll have to head east in hopes of finding some sunny skies tomorrow!

Latourell and Multnomah Falls, Hip Update, & Family

I’m about to go back to work today for day #3, and I’m having a rough time! I’ve gotten about 8 hours of sleep in the last 2 nights and am finding that I’m just not adjusting at all to this evening schedule! Tonight I think I will just come home, get in bed, and try to go to sleep, instead of trying to “wind down” for an hour before bed. This is a rough schedule for me! I’m definitely a day person and prefer to be in bed by 11, so not even getting home some nights till 4am is really not easy. But the job continues to go well and I really am still loving the change of pace here!

Over the weekend, I did manage to make it to Multnomah Falls and Latourell Falls.  On the way out, I stopped at the Vista House at Crown Point, which is really just a small little viewing area with some historical stuff inside (I didn’t look around). The views of the Columbia River Gorge were fantastic! I was really hoping to get a good view of Mt Hood since it was so clear, but it’s difficult to do on the Oregon side of the gorge.

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The falls were just a super short paved walk to get to them (both different locations).

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Latourell on the left, Multnomah on the right.

I tried to talk to the top of Multnomah Falls thinking that it was a mile, but it was a steep, slippery mile! My hip was doing okay but I knew going down would be another story! I got a mile in and it said I was at switchback 7/11, so I decided doing another 4 switchbacks was more than I wanted to struggle through! So I turned around and was very right- going down was way worse than going up! But I took the ittiest bittiest steps and made it down with minimal pain in my hip.

I woke up Monday morning and put my pants on with hardly any pain! So far, I’ve been picking my leg up every day because it has been that motion of lifting up my leg that has been so painful! I was ecstatic to be making some progress! Last night, I picked my leg up off the bed and no shooting pains and that has been what’s the most painful thing about it! I do still hurt and it’s definitely not healed all the way yet, but I’m hopeful now at least! I think tomorrow I may try to go back to the gym and just be very careful about what I do. It’s feeling good enough to get something in, I think!

In other news, I’m an aunt again. Jon’s twin sister had her baby, Judah, on the 20th (I think). His whole family went to Iowa to see them and I was so tempted to fly out tomorrow for my  days off (his dad offered to pay for 1/2 the ticket! so sweet!) but I have tons to do here. I worked the beginning of this week and am working the end of the next week (Wed, Thurs, Fri) and am going to be going to see Ben and Kaitlin again on my days off after, so I wouldn’t have any time to get my time sensitive stuff taken care of. I need to start my next license for traveling and start my Georgia one again. I have to call and pay bills that are due this week. Mostly, my licensing. I don’t know that I can wait another 3 weeks before getting fingerprints sent in for the next job, especially because we’re about to hit the holiday season. So I’m bummed not to be able to make it because I really miss his side of the family and want to meet Baby Judah, but I’m planning on heading to Crater Lake after getting all my business cared for so maybe it’ll help make up for missed family time.

Time to clean up the kitchen and head out to work on this dreary day (again). I’m hoping I can start my 6 days off tomorrow with a strong start instead of sleeping till 3:30 and then lacking energy for the 7 hours I manage to stay awake, like I did this past Saturday!