Category Archives: Health

Strength, and sometimes lack thereof

HAAAMIGAWD! I know, it’s been a very long time. My sincere apologies to all.. thirteen of you who keep up regularly. I’ve been really busy, but I guess that’s just no excuse. Honestly, I’ve mostly been waiting for something worth talking about publicly.

Okay, so here’s some updates on me:

1. In December, I took a trip to Colorado and spent some time with family, and then in the rockies at Breckenridge resort with someone pretty rad who helped me deal with some shit.

2. I have about a week and a half left of this semester at a community college, which leads to my subsequent..

3. I am transferring to a state university soon to finish out my last two years (Almighty Universal Forces please help me, whoever you are).

4. I have quit my job and am now in the middle of switching between two jobs.

5. My new job is at a local chain restaurant. I’ve never been in the serving industry, but hey, a girl’s gotta make a livin’.

6. I like to get outside, which is why I am never here, at my laptop, writing to you. Mah bad.

Now that that’s out of the way, I would like to talk about what I came here to talk about today.

Strength.

Yeah, I know, yadda, yadda, yadda. It can be so cliché. Look away if you must. I want to say that I know people personally, and have heard stories close to the hearts of those I love, that have touched this base within me recently. It takes strength to fend off the ghosts that haunt us. We’ve all experienced things that have left us scarred.

To face things in the moment takes monumental strength and courage, and sometimes even sheer defiance and willpower. I know what it’s like to have to only focus on making it through the day – to hell with any other goals, there’s no room for other goals right now.

yeah, I know. Ibeenthere. Eventually, after facing that goal of surviving day in and day out, you reach a precipice without even knowing it. You recognize the strength within you, the power you command over yourself.

Don’t deny yourself that feeling. You deserve to feel in control, powerful, and strong. You fought with everything in you not to cave, and somehow, you fucking made it.

You cannot control everything that happens, obviously. But you can control how it all affects you. You don’t have to be chased by ghosts. You can face them. You are strong enough, trust me. It’s not easy and it’s usually not quick. You won’t know what you’re doing all the time, or how to feel. That’s okay, because at some point, you’re going to come out on the other end, looking back thinking I can do whatever I need to do. I can do anything. You can move on and let go, truly.

Now I hope to remember that next time I’m facing another situation that is by all (logical) means impossible – Nothing is impossible for me.


we’re all thinking it!

An Open Letter to Local Gym Guido

I am writing to inform you that everyone in America besides the kids on Jersey Shore think you’re a fucking tard. I see you at the gym several times a week, you’re there every single time I’m there. I’m not sure if you’re aware of anyone’s presence besides your own, though, so I won’t presume you have a clue who I am.

You know those weird V-Neck tee shirts you wear, even to the gym? Most people think those are creepy. Nobody wants to see your orangey-tanned pectorals which are strangely absent of hair. By the way, it’s not very manly to be as smooth-to-the-touch as me, since I have a vagina. You don’t need to put your patchy (head) hair up in globs of that shiny, smelly gel when you’re at the gym either. It just makes you look like a child molester. Oh that’s right, you DID get charged for sleeping with that minor. What was she… sixteen? But she gave you consent, right? nobigdeal.

I’m sorry, did I bruise your giant ego? I know it’s hard to hear criticisms, but I really think you should listen and take this to heart. For the aforementioned reasons (and many more!), most people tend to gag when you’re present. Shocking, I know. It is what it is.

Sincerely,

that girl whose ass you stare at while I’m running on the treadmill.

P.S. Yeah, I know it’s a nice ass – why do you think I spend my time at the gym?! Doesn’t make you any less creepy for staring (for minutes on end). Yes, I’m aware that you’re obsessively checking me out. Do you really think I’m that dense?


Top 5 Awesome Winter Sports

So it’s getting to be that time of the year – the blistery cold wind is howling and snowfall is imminent. It’s fun to bundle up in – let’s face it – the most comfortable clothes in the entire wardrobe. Cozy is what it’s all about! Winter is kind of a love/hate thing for most people who truly experience it. Some days are gorgeous – trees covered in a layer of sparkly ice and snow, deer leaving tracks in the snow and bounding up to your house to stay near a heat source, bright white light when the sun makes an appearance. However, that’s a small portion of real winter. Most winter days are dreary and unbelievably cold, at least here in MN. Last winter consisted of few days of sunshine and about two to four feet of snow at any given time (give or take), coupled with literally single digit temps and sub zero wind chills. The wind gets so cold it actually burns.

90% of days of the winter season in MN, everyone has to spend 30 mins scraping ice and snow off their cars and shoveling snow away from tires. Then we proceed to deal with cars slipping and sliding all over the damn place like the roads are a pinball machine, due to a sheet of ice about an inch thick. Aaaah, winter. The time of the year when everyone’s fifteen minutes late to work every day – and the boss can’t say a damn thing about it.

So, I know that after the first two weeks or so of snow, MN winters can get pretty depressing. Days are short and cold, so we spend way too much time inside. I’m here to make a list of things to do that will help people like me, who are hellbent on remaining active year round, do just that.

 

Without further ado, I give you:

 

The Amazing List of Winter Wonderful Awesomeness

Or simply,

Crap To Do When There’s Snow

1. Snowboarding or Skiing:

This is TOTALLY how cool everyone looks when doing snowsports.

Granted, this picture is totally glorified (thank you, Google), but you get the idea. Whether you can ski downhill or cross country, it’s a great workout and a lot of fun. Snowboarding, in my opinion, is much easier than skiing, so give both a shot and see which you prefer. You can get all the gear you need for a couple hundred bucks, maybe less if you buy used, and you can keep it for many years – believe me, the gear will probably outlast you.

2. Tubing!!:

It only looks dorky

Yeah, so… you might think it looks totally retarded – but you’d be sorely mistaken. It is probably literally THE most fun you can have all freakin’ winter. Bring your whole family, cousins included, and go rent a few tubes. I guarantee you will spend an entire day doing this shit. My family goes every year, it’s kind of a ritual.

3. Sleigh Rides:

"Mush! You silly horse, mush!!"

Yeah, there’s only two ways to go about this without it being lame. The first is to make a date of it, go with someone you wanna knock socks with. The second is to go with (ironically) your family, especially if there’s kids. They love this crap, and it’s pretty fun to see them get all excited.

4. Snowshoeing:

"Damnit. She told me to follow the trees."

Contrary to what one may believe, this is a serious workout. It can be fun if you bring a group of friends or family with you, so make a day of it and bring food and some extra gear – have a wintertime picnic atop a big hill!

5. Dog Sledding:

"Oh. NOW we say 'mush.'"

Yeah, for real. Ever tried it? Bet you haven’t. It’s actually a lot of fun, especially for those of us who adore anything with fur. A common practice in MN, dog sledding is a winter pastime that probably won’t ever die. If you’re a fan of Siberian Huskies or Alaskan Malamutes, this is something you should look into. This is such a huge (yet oddly unmentioned) hobby that there are marathons every year all along Minnesota’s North Shore. The Beargrease race starts in Duluth, Minnesota and takes a 411 mile trail (Gunflint trail) all the way through Grand Marais and Beaver Bay to the final destination at Grand Portage. I’ve personally seen this route and it is one of the most beautiful places I’ve ever seen to date. The race honors a man named John Beargrease who was the son of an Anishinaabe chief and worked to deliver mail through the North Shore by – you guessed it – dog sled. His route is remembered yearly by many enthusiasts to date.

For your viewing pleasure, here’s a recent video from the Beargrease Race:

 

 


I’m a quitter.

So I’ve recently decided to quit smoking. I’ve also decided that I want to write a blog that will include some info about cigarettes and some helpful hints for fellow quitters winners.

Why are cigarettes addictive?

Well, I know you know this (cuz everyone does) – you can blame the nicotine. Nicotine is a stimulant that releases beta-endorphins, the natural chemical in our brains that makes us feel good. Here’s some stuff you might NOT know about cigarettes. In each ciggy, there’s over 600 chemicals/additives, and the effects of these chemicals actually multiply when we inhale them – in effect, we inhale about 4,000 chemicals (because of the way they mix to produce MORE chemicals).

The purposes of these additives are to

  • improve burning speed and consistency
  • preserve the tobacco
  • improve the flavor
  • and most importantly: to increase/enhance the effects of the nicotine. They basically BOOST the addictiveness of the nicotine.

So now that I’ve got mah edumuhcatin’ outta the way, I can get to the part that you really wanna hear:

6 Useful tips for quitting!

1. Watch this movie: The Insider (1999)

Okay, after you watch that, you’ll be fucking PSYCHED to not spend another penny on cigarettes.

Next on the list is…

2. Load up on fruits and veggies. If you’re like me and you decide to quit cold-turkey, you’ll want to have plenty of healthy foods around while you detox. I found that grapefruit is effing GREAT for nicotine detox, not only because it’s healthy, but it takes time to cut out all the little pieces so it keeps your hands occupied.

3. some sort of candy or gum. When you feel those nasty, nasty cravings and you NEED something to do with your mouth/hands, and you’re not home to eat a grape, eat a candy. Try to avoid becoming dependent on replacing ciggies with candy, so this means you GOTTA try to not eat some every single time you crave. They key is moderation. I use candy only during my WORST cravings. If you can find something fat free, and/or sugar free, go with that.

4. A healthy habit to keep yourself from sitting at home doing nothing, thinking about how much you’d like to smoke. I picked up the habit of riding a bike (27 miles today!) .

5. An iPod app (I’m sure there are hundreds of android equivalents) called SMOQUIT. It tracks everything from money saved by not smoking, to the number of cigarettes you would have smoked since your quit date, to a cessation/goal timeline to help keep you motivated.

Badass App!

6. A really supportive friend/someone who will spend a lot of time with you over the course of several days. Spending my time in someone’s company is probably the MOST helpful of all these tips. There’s plenty of reasons why it’s helpful to have someone around you while you make this life change, but I’m sure that these reasons will vary from one person to the next.

That about sums it up. No matter what you do, it’s going to be a long, hard road to being smoke-free. I will say that it is completely impossible to quit until you are truly ready to commit to your decision, because at the end of the day, these tips I’ve given you are just that – mere tips – they will not guarantee success in your endeavor. At the end of the day, the most important thing you have is your willpower. You MUST commit yourself fully. It’s not easy, but I will say that it’s totally worth it. It’s been a week, and I’m not turning back. Every day gets a little easier and I breathe a little better.