Tag Archives: Exercise

Making 2012 the Best Year Yet: By doing pharmacology homework.

I had all these lofty bloggy ideas for New Year’s postings and they fell to the wayside in my upheaval of not moving. But now that I’ve cleared up my location, I can move on to being super inspirational about the coming year. And not doing my pharmacology work yet.

Having a birthday the day after the New Year begins is like having my own personal fresh start. My 2012 Resolutions are also my 29th year Resolutions. This year I took a good hard look at 2011 and 28 and decided I can do better. Not because I failed terribly last year, but because every year should be better. I can’t help thinking that I want 2012 to be my best year ever. And then I feel guilty because it’s the first year devoid of Mom. But really, what makes a year GOOD? I’m going to take a few shots in the dark and offer some ideas. And I think doing these things when you’re missing a key part of your life, can still result in the best year yet.

Erin’s Tactical Guide to Making 2012 The Best Year Yet
(Or Things I Will Tell Myself Every Day in 2012)

1. Do hard things: when it’s right, even when other people don’t, even when you don’t see why.
2. Don’t whine about them: Suck it up, keep calm, carry on.
3. Get your priorities straight: Big things first, little things last (I stole this one from a sermon).
4. If it didn’t work the first time, change tactics: the hole is round, the peg is square. Stop sitting there beating on it, it’ll just wear you out and make you feel silly.
5. Eat well, exercise well, sleep well: There is a reason it’s cliche. It works.

I’m pretty sure if I remember these things, do these things, and trust a big and good God, I’ll be improving on last year. Let’s try it. And also let’s do pharmacology homework.

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I’m only in it for the Participation Ribbons.

Now that I am a registered nurse, I am not busy at all. As several helpful people have pointed out, I have only had my license for two weeks so the jobless state should not be bothering me yet. And for the most part it is not bothering me at all. I focus on classes, some volunteering, job-searching, spending time with the family, and exercise.

A lot of exercise.

I know, I know. As my good friend Audrey would say, “my life is so hard”. My entry today is very Audrey-esque because she writes a runner blog that will inspire you like it has inspired me.

Yesterday I spent some motivation money on running gear since I’ve been building up my mileage. I’m not a competitor so I need to do what I can to keep going. Check out the neat-o arm bands for my iPhone.

I splurged on last season's Asics GT2160. Not sure I've ever known my shoe model before.

Running and I have a spotty history. Twin sister and I started running at 14 because we were bored. We had just returned from Kona after three months in Asia with our family. It was still a new town for us, we had very few friends, and it was a hot summer to spend inside our little two bedroom cottage. I remember Dad telling us we should try to run down to the Kona Pier and he would pick us up there.

We started running those 2 or 3 miles every day and we kept up the tradition through the teenage years. We ran to outrigger paddling practice. We ran to the Old Airport Beach Park for soccer practice. Somehow Sara got skinny and I got, let’s just say “muscular”. By the time I was 19, I decided I hated running and I did it very sporadically through college. And dropped 20 pounds. What the heck. Running, you mock me.

But, when the mid-twenties became the late twenties, I realized that this new found metabolism wasn’t going to last forever so I hit the pavement again. And this time I loved it. Mostly because I have so many friends that run and it became social…which is one of my favorite things! (Have I told you how much I love people?) Audrey especially helped me to learn to love running on Oahu with all of the coastal areas and pretty hills in Manoa. And now that I am back in Kona, I am running the old twin sister routes. Good times.

But now, since I have a ridiculous amount of free time (the calm between the storms, people), I have also picked up another old love. Swimming.

When I was in elementary and middle school in Florida, we were on a summer swim team for three years. Running was Dad’s doing. Swimming was Mom’s. She had great memories of her swim team days and signed us up gleefully for our own memories.  The Oviedo Barracudas. We were awesome. By the second season, the Barley girls were famous. Because Sara was fast and ribbon-winning, Megan was the only one in her age bracket so the whole pool cheered her little one-person races, and Erin was the sister that made lots of friends and got participation ribbons. That team was a cool club of little kids with ill-fitting swim caps, even iller-fitting speedos and college-aged coaches.

And then, since we loved swimming so much, Mom signed us up for the “YEAR ROUND” swim team. The Blue Dolfins. kicked. my. butt. All of the sudden, the cool kids were the ones who trained for Junior Olympics, wore multiple old suits for “drag training” and showered in the locker room. I still remember trying to squeeze two suits on and getting into the pool without bending at the waist. We were expected to swim 1,000 yard warm-ups and then sprints on the clock. I can hear Coach Dale yelling out “On the 30…go!” “Get that bottom up, scissor those legs…what kind of flip turn was that?” My flip turns usually mutated into the kind that took the least amount of energy so that I could continue swimming without being the lame-o that hung on the lane lines part way through practice. And our wonderful parents humored us by letting us shower in the locker rooms even though we lived ten minutes away.

The really great thing is, that swim team not only humbled my bad Barracuda self, it gave me life-long swimming skills that I have never forgotten. I haven’t been on a swim team since (unless you count a semester long Advanced Swimming class in college) but it is a skill set that I have in my exercise arsenal. I even did an ocean swim with some great ladies who have now talked me into trying out the Master’s swim team. I know full well that I won’t keep up but that’s OK. They can kick my butt too.

I may run the occasional 10K but I’m not a competitor. I’m in it for the friends and the participation ribbons. And hopefully to avoid getting too “muscular”. So,thanks Mom. And Dad. And Audrey. And all of my other exercise-y friends. Because of you, when the late-twenties become the early thirties, maybe I’ll be ready.

If you want to come along, I will get you a ribbon too.

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TDV…it’s not a disease.

I have a date. With a tall, dark, and handsome licensing exam. September 29. Mark your calendars for prayer, fasting, sack cloth, whatever. I made the decision on Wednesday and ran away to Oahu for a weekend of “Septoberfest” with friends, naps on Kailua beach, fancy brunch with girlfriends, and long conversations under the stars. It was amazing. It was not studying. Today I looked at drugs and IVs and side effects for eight solid hours, interrupted only by sister forcing smoothies on me. About the time I needed an IV hooked up with some straight happy infusing at maximum speed, Dad got me out the door for a walk.

Me: “I hate this. I’m going to fail. Too many knowledge gaps. Bad stuff. Crappity crap crap.”
Dad: “Can you re-take it if you fail?”
Me: “Not an option! I can’t fail! Crappity, say the opposite of what I just said, crap.”
Dad: “You are on the path you are meant to be on. God put you here. Wise stuff. Dad stuff.”
Me: “I hate studying for this thing.”
Dad: “I took the Bar exam and felt the same way. You will pass.”
Me: “Ok.”
Dad: “Make a schedule. Exercise. Trust. The End.”

Dad’s voice almost always trumps the lying voices in my head. The sermon this Sunday was about the community we cultivate and the voices that determine the trajectory of our life. Theoretically, we have five Trajectory Determing Voices that we listen to. Let’s call them TDVs. Well, one of my TDVs is absolutely my dad (surprise). And his voice usually tells me to exercise. Not because I am fat. I’m not…really. But because he hears the irrational edge in my voice when I’ve sat on my butt all day. Break up with a boyfriend? Dad, I’m neeeeeevvvveeerrrrrr getting maaaaarrrieeeed. Exercise. Queen of the World. Works like a charm.

Obviously, Dad says other things to me. That’s what TDVs do. All this nursing studying is making the abbreviation TDV look like a terrible disease. It’s not. He and Mom shaped me and set me on course with the things they said. Good, bad, and neutral. Dad is going to continue to be one of my main voices but as I progress in life, who else will I allow to speak into my decisions and my development as a person? We need to choose wisely…I’m pretty sure we can start listening to people by default when we really need to purposefully point our ears at the right words. The right community is essential.

So, figure out your TDVs and if you don’t know who they are, go get some. And exercise.

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If you don’t think God has swagger, you’re the crazy one.

I met some folks for tennis at Ala Moana beachpark today but arrived early so went on a run. I noticed a lot of people. Ala Moana is one of those places where a LOT happens. Basically, it is the Central Park of Honolulu. There are exercise classes, AA meetings, picnics, runners, bikers, frisbee-players, dog-walkers, head-stand doers, stand-up paddlers, and your standard beach-goers.

A less crowded Ala Moana Beach Park (photo from PlanetWare Travel Guide)

Typically I am trying to run somewhere between 3 and 5 miles (she mentions impressively) so I am heaving and plodding along (still impressive?) and not noticing many people who aren’t directly blocking my path. Today I knew I was only running a mile so I didn’t faint on the tennis courts later so I ventured some looks around. God was not messing around when he made the human race. There are some incredibly athletic people (Fast Sprinting Couple with Real Runner Clothes who lapped me), some seriously good looking people (band of Brazilians holding surfboards where there is no surf, but looking good while doing it), and some all-around gems (Cute Old Speed Walking Couple). God is not boring.

Before this run, my day had already been full of un-boring people. The highlight was an opportunity to discuss life with someone who possessed some very keen insight on the character of God. We talked about all sorts of dilemmas, controversies, and the answers to some of life’s great quandries. So, of course, we talked religion. Well, I mostly listened religion. It was great and when he determined that I had some Protestant ways, he leveled with me. “Now, look. If you don’t think God parties, you’ve got another thing coming. People who don’t think God can dance and have some straight up swagger are the crazy ones.”


I thought this was an excellent time to share my all time favorite Bible verse – Zephaniah 3:17…God dances and spins in delight over you! He rejoices over you and shouts in exultation!” In short, God’s got swagger because he loves us. He liked this. We agreed. Don’t make God boring! He isn’t.

So if you have had a boring day today, look around you. God made some great people and he made them with some straight up swagger.

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