Thursday, July 11, 2013

Me, the big bear and the Go Diego Go! bike

"How about you and I go for a walk tomorrow morning? I walk and you ride."

A big smile breaks across big bear's face. 

Hubby and I have been struggling since big bear started getting up early - anywhere from 2 am to 5 am, eager to start the day. 

"I want to play Mommy!"

"Good grief big bear, please go back to bed!"

With bloodshot eyes and sizable pillows under my eyes, I stumbled to Chapters Indigo at lunch to buy the OK to Wake clock that glows green at the agreed time when the big bear can get out of bed. Thankfully it works - mostly. Hubby and I are lucky if we can get the big bear to sleep in until 6:30 am; typically he is ready to go at 5:30 no matter what time he goes to bed.

Then last weekend I had an epiphany. Since big bear is ready to move at an early hour, why the heck don't we go do something together?

The one thing that I miss the most from my pre-child days is starting the day with a workout. Running, walking or cycling in the morning was a great way to start the day. It injected my morning with energy and it was a great feeling knowing that I didn't have to go back out at the end of the day. 

Most friends can't imagine working out in the morning. However, I feel the same way about working out in the evening.  I just don't have the drive to do it at the end of a long, busy day.

Once the little bears arrived, morning workouts no longer fit into the morning schedule. I currently get out of bed at 5:15 on a weekday and I'm physically unable to get up any earlier. So since the arrival of the bears, I'm stuck exercising after work, after family time, and after the kids go to bed. 

So, on Sunday morning my big bear quietly tip-toed to my bedside and asked if we were going for a walk. I nodded slowly and moved to an upright position. I grabbed my clothes laid out the night before; we left my sleeping hubby and little bear.

We both changed from our pajamas to our clothes. I grabbed a snack, water and Kleenex and headed outside to put our shoes on. I quietly fetched his helmet and bike from the garage and off we went.

We talked as we explored the streets and houses of the less explored parts of our neighbourhood. He marveled at Toronto's skyline and I showed him the Niagara escarpment. We stopped by a playground he hadn't seen before.

I smiled thinking at how great it felt to be outside moving in the morning while so many people are sleeping. It was awesome to be sharing this moment with my son. And I couldn't believe I hadn't thought of this earlier!

For our first outing, we walked, talked and cycled for 2 hours and another hour the following day. Last Sunday we overdid it with a three hour jaunt, but we discovered a few shortcuts and watched the fisherman fishing at the Oakville harbor.

Ah, life is good. I'm exercising in the morning again and now I have company!   

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Exhaustion caused by potential iron deficiency?

After three months of complete exhaustion, I feel like I've finally woken up out of a fog.

I had trouble getting up in the morning; I was unable to stay awake on the train to work. I dragged my behind through the workday and I could barely keep my eyes open on the train back home.
I perked up slightly at dinner with hubby and the bears, but my energy level quickly plummeted during story time. On more than one occasion I nodded off in the chair before the little bear fell asleep in his bed.

Swimming ended in June for the summer, but I missed practices more than I went for the final two months. I had absolutely no energy for anything let alone swimming late at night only to get to bed even later which only compounded the lack of energy I felt.

Last week I received a clear sign from body. My body said, "EAT SOMETHING ELSE." So, that day I decided to forgo my lunch of salad, chick peas, fruit and other stuff for a sandwich and salad from Fast Fresh Foods. 

After lunch, I was telling my friend about this lack of energy and struggle to get anything done. I noted that I was feeling more awake - more energetic - after eating a sandwich instead of the lunch instead of my usual fare from home. That's when she suggested a possible iron deficiency. 

I thought back to the time when I changed my recent weekday food routine, substituting a meat-based protein for a plant-based protein. I'm fairly certain that the exhaustion came at some point after the food change-up. 

And while I can't say for sure that an iron deficiency is or is not the reason for the lack of energy, I've come to realize that I need to better educate myself on plant-based proteins, I've learned that the food I decide to eat can have a direct impact on my energy level and the importance of eating a variety of foods. Plus I decided to add a once a day multi-vitamin to my eating regimen for good measure.

So, I feel better - my energy level is up and I'm excited to get back to writing. 

How are you doing?