Eat, Bike, Sleep: Things to Do When Bored

According to my unscientific hunch, my lack of sleep is what is causing the major fluctuations in my blood pressure readings. My blood pressure had been rising all week, as my sleep was diminishing, but last night I slept more than six hours and my blood pressure dropped like a stone. Interesting. While this is good to see on a few night’s data, I will have to see if the correlation continues.

I had to laugh. I was speaking with my father tonight, and I realized that he had no idea about what his state of health is after a serious heart attack a few years back. What gave it away? When I told him that I was eating organic root vegetables and a piece of artisinal beef tendeloin, he came back with “Jeez, yeah I had a burger, fries and pop at DQ today.” Ummm, say what? “Yeah, but I make sure they don’t put any salt on the burger, fries or the pop, but I saw on tv that salt isn’t as bad for you as they thought.”  Riiiight…

Upon reflection, I decided that the average citizen really has no idea whatsoever about what is in their food or what it does to his body. Price, taste and quantity are the prime factors that encourage food court purchases, and objects made with flour, corn, factory-farmed meats and sugar will always win out over organic, vegetable-based, traditionally-raised meats on those criteria. Fortunately, you can eat better if you just accept that you eat too much meat, that the very best organic vegetables taste amazing once you get off the sugar/fat addiction, and that the cost can be pretty darn close, if not considerably less expensive.

Tonight, I went with a 3lb bag of Heirloom Vegetables from Cookstown Greens for $13.99 and 152 grams of organic, anti-biotic free beef tenderloin for $10.05. I will guess that my dinner of goodness will cost me about $15 for astounding food that is clean, full of essential nutrients, and beautiful looking. Instead, I could easily have spent the same amount at the food court and received a lot of sugar, calories, and grease that would only make me feel ill 20 minutes afterwards.

We go to the “comfort” foods because it is easy. We go to the food court or restaurant or grocery frozen entree section, because we no longer learn to cook. We see the prices on those vegetables and go: “Are you insane? That much for some lousy carrots? I will buy the frozen lasagna for that!” Fair enough, but that lasagna is made with lo-grade fuels and you will eat too much of it when your brain shuts off, and then your body goes to pot. I am tired of my body being that way; so the cycle ends here.

I am not trying to sound like an almighty preacher; I just know that my health and quality of life has changed dramatically in the past month. I am not sick this Fall. I  am still slowly losing weight. I want to exercise more than I ever have before. My grocery bill is going down overall, and I see the beauty in eating seasonal vegetables. Meat…is tough right now. I eat as little of it as I can now. I still need some, but I prefer to see it as a tiny condiment in lieu of the main focus.

The bike ride was great today. My ankle is still sore from the injury a few weeks back, but I knew that it would be. I am hoping that I can get back out tomorrow for another ride, because I could not pick up the Kurt Kinetic Road Trainer yet, so that I can ride indoors all winter. Tonight was my first attempt at the P90X Stretch workout, because my entire body is tightening up and I need a good stretch without the body stresses that yoga can have. What did I think of it? Like all of the P90X routines, this one is difficult the first time through, but I have to admit that each time I attempt one it become easier, and I am able to last through an entire workout. Again, it pushes me to keep going. I am not sure why, but I actually love Tony Horton’s presentation style and quirky phrasings; he pushes the right buttons to keep me pushing through. I wish just one of my gym teachers had been like him when I was in school. Overall, it was a great stretch and the hour passed quickly despite the dogs trying to lick my feet.

On the photography front, I have placed up a few classic Canadian photographs from my catalogue on the PhotoShelter site. They are not available as prints, but are available for licensing for magazines and brochures. As always, this is the quiet time of year for my business, which is a good thing. I have a whole new bag of tricks ready for the Late Winter and Spring, and the Canon 50mm 1.2 lens is slowly getting easier to use – controlling focus at 1.2 is tough in anyone’s hands.

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