So much excitement for one long overdue post. Let’s see! Okay, last week I blogged about my desire to create an atmosphere of growth, with a variety of different goals. Today I want to jot a note about #1: Bike More.
For those who don’t know (99% of you) I’ve been trying to bike to work here in the City. The issue is that I’ve been on a 40 pound, 15 year old clunker of a mountain bike, which works surprisingly well for its age, but left me wanting to take “walk breaks” on 1% grades. I walked into REI on the first day of its anniversary sale with a knowledgeable friend to check out the options, knowing I’d have to probably pay $1000 for a decent road bike, and there was a Scott Speedster, last year’s model, extra small, on clearance for $519. I bought it.
That was only 10 or 11 days ago and I am having a full on love affair with my bike. (No name yet – why does everyone keep asking me this?!) I put over 50 miles on it that first weekend on a 20- and 30- mile ride with my parents along the American River Trail. It felt like I was flying, and it was so fun to share that with them as well. Also fun is just how horrible I look in bike shorts – but then again, who doesn’t?
When I brought her back last week, I upgraded her for my City commute, with a rack on the back so I could start carrying my 30+ lbs of commuter drivel (huge brick of a computer, makeup, straightener, running clothes, and so on) in panniers (bike bags) instead of entirely on my back. Hello, back sweat! I feel like a whole new person.
Yes, biking home from work is still uphill and not a cakewalk. Yes, biking is rather dangerous in the City and a new bike doesn’t make me any less likely to be flattened by Muni. But at the end of the day, my new bike has made me excited about something – excited about a more pleasant commute that adds an entire hour-plus of exercise to my daily routine, excited about potentially going for a tri, excited about building a new kind of strength. In The Happiness Project, the author says money CAN buy happiness… and I think this was a great purchase. It distracts me from my nagging running injuries and reminds me that even if I can’t be setting any PRs these days, I can be chasing new goals on my new two wheels.
In other news – I have an exciting giveaway to share with you all! This is right in line with another one of my goals – to think much more critically about what I put into my mouth (AKA return to HEALTHY EATING!). The friendly people at Green Giant and Weight Watchers, via MyBlogSpark, sent me a gift pack with a coupon to try their new Valley Fresh Steamers line. I grabbed the Cheesy Rice and Broccoli from the grocery store a few days ago – they had me at ”Cheesy” – and cooked it in the microwave, just a couple minutes right in the bag and pow! Done.
I’m occasionally skeptical about frozen foods, but have been increasingly reliant on them as my schedule has gotten crazier and crazier and time in the evening has become so precious. But I feel great about these products – good for you, healthy ingredients yet also prepared quickly! I can honestly say I will purchase these products in the future to have on hand for quick, healthy meals and use their recipes.
In addition to the coupon, I was sent a pretty dope prize pack. I have had a few lunchboxes here and they’ve all kind of failed me. now I have a sturdy new one, a perfectly sized water bottle, a solar pedometer, and – this is awesome – a big salad container with a fork and knife that snap in to the lid. Perfect way to bring a salad or veggie-friendly lunch to the office. I will definitely be using this and taking advantage of any opportunity I can to eat healthier. It also included a nutrition tracker, which I’ve been using religiously since I received it last week. It’s a pretty well rounded kit for healthy eating/living.
The fun news – I get to give away another one of these sweet prize packs (Steamers coupon, insulated lunch box, sweet container with fork/knife in lid, ice pack, and pedometer) to a reader. If you are interested, please just leave a comment on this post by Monday June 4. Bonus points if you tell me something you do to eat healthy during the week, especially at lunch – I am in need for some motivation after a few too many mac and cheeses! I’ll notify the winner that evening.
Have a great day everybody!
Disclosure: The coupons, information, and additional gift pack have been provided by Green Giant® and Weight Watchers® through MyBlogSpark.