Saturday, March 20, 2021

Boating Blunders, Barbell Joy, Real Meditation

I am only about half way through the third book in my formerly-referenced Nancy Drew boxset (I was told the proper word is “boxset," not “box set”) and I am astonished at the number of boating accidents that have occurred thus far. I realize I live in a coastal city, but nonetheless, boating accidents are about the furthest thing from my daily consciousness. I don’t own a boat, nor do I hang out with boat-adjacent people. I have nothing against them, mind you, I just don’t happen to know any. I haven’t been on a boat since a cruise to Alaska more years ago than I can recall. So I was a bit startled when the third book opened with yet another boating accident, and a genuinely scary one at that. I have identified a bit of a plot hole in my beloved Nancy Drew series. Nancy, who is hyper-prepared in every other area of life to the point of carrying an extra suitcase in her car containing pajamas, a change of clothes and a toothbrush, has a major blind spot when it comes to boating safety. She has a backup plan and an emergency preparedness kit for every situation, yet she is totally cavalier when it comes to boats. She just blunders onto them blindly, never checking the weather ahead of time, or, as was key in this last accident, ensuring that there are adequate life jackets on board. She is perpetually getting stuck in dangerous storms on the water and seems to have a strange amnesia about it. When I finish all of the books in the set, I am going to start a Nancy Drew boating accident-count spreadsheet just for my own amusement.

My new (ish) trainer seems fairly averse to gym machines and has been focusing most of our sessions of late on dumbbells, kettle bells and barbells. I’m starting to see her point. I told her one of my goals was to powerlift (yes, me, and I still can’t believe it myself) so in our last session, she showed me the coolest move ever with a barbell! I learned how to do a “clean” and it was really fun and weirdly addicting. During my last several gym runs, I have eschewed the familiar machines in favor of deadlifting the barbell, executing the clean, lifting it over my head, and balancing it on my upper back to do squats. I love that little routine so much that I’m considering getting a barbell set for home. The trainer told me that if I can get to forty pounds on the clean (I’m doing thirty now) she will introduce me to the “real” barbells on the deadlifting mat. I’m totally stoked and trying to work my way up to that forty pounds as fast as possible.

To those of you who were waiting with baited breath last week for my non-existent post, I apologize. I’m not generally prone to getting sick, but I got hit with something again, some horrid crud that knocked me out for about three days straight, and all I could do was shiver under the blankets in a state of perpetual chills and severe fatigue. (It wasn’t COVID.) I have come to the conclusion that the massive, intense, non-stop stress over this last month strained my immune system and left me vulnerable. Thus, I am experimenting with short, “gentle” Yoga and calming videos to try and reduce my cortisol levels. All it’s done so far is make me jealous of the beautiful young blondes who occupy such videos, which are always filmed in gorgeous, beachy, tropical settings. Of course these women are relaxed. They live on the beach and they have glossy hair and flawless figures. I would like to see a de-stressing video shot by a working mother of four with some middle-aged flab who is filming in her messy living room while her five-year-old twins fight over the i-Pad and the cat hacks up a hairball. Now that would be impressive.

Here’s a beachy Yoga video by a tanned, beautiful blonde. It’s a pretty good video. I did it the other day


--Kristen McHenry

1 comment: said...

Love this one with a flourish, though not in a yoga posture! :-o