Thursday, May 26, 2011

Baby Backpacking with Kelty

H's cousin gave us a used Kelty Journey when bug entered the scene. Until recently, we'd been using either a stroller or carrying bug in a Baby Borne when we'd go on walks. Then I pulled the Kelty out of the basement because the Baby Borne was wrecking my old, chair conditioned back.
The Journey looks like a serious back pack with the storage compartment converted into a chair. We didn't have instructions, so figuring the harness system out was a challenge. Once you figure the straps out it makes perfect sense and they keep the passenger snug, but comfortable.
With the technical hurdles overcome, the real challenge was seeing how bug, and I, did on an actual walk... We started small with a walk around the neighborhood. Bug liked it a lot. She was able to see stuff and move around a little better. My back liked the Kelty much better than the Baby Borne. The weight is well distributed.
We've taken out two more times since then. We did a 5k charity walk that was most fun. Today we did a short hike that was marred by mosquitoes. On both occasions the Kelty did excellent. Bug likes hanging out in it and my back is much happier!

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Narrow River

I was beginning to wonder if I'd ever get on the water this year. Between weather and family, it seemed like there was never time. This weekend the stars aligned and I was able to get out for a paddle.
The Narrow River is not an exciting or challenging paddle, but it is a good way to start the season. It is long enough to get some good work on the forward stroke and a chance to practice some boat control. It is also a nice paddle for catching up with people.
It was a nice day on water and bodes well for the rest of the season.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Getting Older

Last month H, K, and I visited my Mom in FL and my Mom was commenting on how she couldn't believe that her baby was turning 35 and that she was turning 65. It was a simple comment that sent my brain spinning in dark circles.
"Oh my god, when K graduates from college I'll be 65! Will I live that long? Will I be healthy enough to teach her to enjoy the outside as much as I do? I cannot believe all the stupid, unhealthy shit I did. My lord, I'm a walking poster child for unhealthy lifestyles what with all the TV I watch and my general winter sloth........ Not to mention the fact that I sit at a desk all day...."
In case you didn't know, I am a bit of a catastophist and a little anxiety riddled and a bit of a hypochondriac. The calm, Zen-like exterior is just a thin facade.
In the face of this spiraling descent in to anxiety induced paralysis, I decided (with a lot of help from the ever patient H) that the only thing to do was commit myself to staying healthy and enjoy life for what it is.
One other thing about me is that I am not really able to ease into to things. There are really only two states: on or off. So, I went all in. I created a plan to start bike commuting to work and lose weight and eat right like I was in my twenties. Sadly, my body is in its forties.
It takes more than two weeks to build up the cardio fitness to push a single speed thirteen miles over some reasonably hilly terrain. It takes more than a day to recover from pushing my body too hard. Weight does not melt off at light speed. Eating habits that have built up over a life time get pretty entrenched.
It is hard to have the fact of your mortality dragged into the daylight. I think most of us tend to keep it in a dark place where we don't have to think about much and that is a good thing. Thinking about it is terrifying.
So, I'm not a kid any more and I have a long term responsibility. I also have a lot of things I want to do on this mortal plane. I will keep working on getting and staying in shape. I will be more cognizant of what I eat. Most importantly I'm putting the fact of my mortality in a box among the other crap in my closet. Life is too precious to waste time thinking about it ending.