Tag Archives: Sleep

Harder Weeks

19 Jan

I got back in the gym this morning to lift weights.

The last time I had visited?  Six days ago.  While it might seem like a normal interval, I’ve worked a pretty good three-day-a-week habit since the first of the year.  We all have them some times when it comes to finding time to exercise or just to feel normal.  This one is shaping up to be one and next week might be the same.

The weekend shaped up to be a busy one.  While my kids got to play pick up soccer on Saturday and again on Monday, I missed out on my Sunday afternoon game because of a home improvement project that I was finishing up followed by dinner plans with friends.  Monday afternoon I was on a plane out of town for a 24 hour business trip and all of the pitfalls that can occur there.

I did get a few minutes to start researching a training plan for (what I consider) sprint races – I’ve found some good resources like Speed Endurance that I’ll be checking out when I get some more time.  There’s a lot of videos that detail training development for different distances for me to watch and learn from.

How do I try to moderate the effects of weeks like this one?

Food on the Road

It’s easy to get off plan when you are on the road from a dietary perspective.  It’s especially easy when it comes to a lifestyle like Paleo – because when you look at the quick serve and fast food restaurant industries, it’s a white and starchy world out there.

I try and stay out of the fast food channel entirely.  Quick serve restaurants like Chipotle are a little better from the standpoint that the food can be customized and you can usually find a menu item that contains some leafy greens that you can add other vegetables too and a fairly clean protein.

I was fortunate to stay clean this trip – we ate lunch and dinner at full service (although chain) restaurants that I could order salads and vegetables with my meals.

Breakfast was also easy this trip – our hotel had counter service for breakfast and offered bacon and eggs.  I’ve also used Cracker Barrel (of all places!) on previous trips – they have a low-carb friendly menu that features bacon and eggs.  You could probably find a side of vegetables there as well if you wanted it.

Next week’s challenge involves staying on property at Disney, so we’ll see how I can fair in a closed environment.

Daylight and Air

One of my substitutes for getting to the gym is at least getting outdoors in the sun for a few minutes, and preferably to do something active.  After getting my home improvement project done on Sunday, I went out in what was left of the sunshine – the beautiful “Golden Hour” sun before sunset to do some light yard work (I pruned two small trees in my yard).  While I used to find activity like this tedious – I’ve come to recognize that the time outside helps improve my mood and attitude.

I got my dose on Monday morning with my kids pick up game – but Tuesday proved to be a day in the car and in meetings combined with cold and rainy weather.

Sleep

Sleep is important in weeks like this one.  Even when there’s work pressing – you need to disconnect and shut down in the evening and let your body rest.

For me, that includes at least thirty minutes before bedtime without the laptop on – allowing my mind to slow down and shut down before I go to sleep.  In a hotel, I also use the White Noise Ambience app on my iPhone to help cover up the unfamiliar hotel background noise when I sleep.

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Vacation Adaptation

31 Dec

I’ve been on vacation for the holidays now since December 23rd.  It’s been a great week spent at home with my family, enjoying time together.

It’s interesting how quickly though your body and mind adapt to the lifestyle that being off from work affords you.

My normal schedule means waking at about 5 AM and commuting to the office for a 9-10 hour workday and then a 1 hour commute home, followed by an evening spent preparing dinner and food for the next day at work.  Not so, since vacation started.

Outdoors Time

The weather in Atlanta over the past week has been excellent.  Atlanta never gets really cold like other parts of the US – it’s definitely colder than the summer and fall, but it’s still weather that you can enjoy outdoors time.

During vacation, I’ve been able to play pickup soccer, do some morning training with a Goalkeeper preparing for a tryout, get outside with my sons for soccer, work on building another garden bed, and take the family out to a Miniature Golf and Go-Kart park.

Sleep

I think the lack of time in front of a computer, coupled with a lot of outdoors time has really helped regain a normal sleep cycle.  I’m tired in the evening and I can sleep until morning with only minor interruptions.  It’s gone a long way to making me feel normal and helping my body recover from some sickness and from the lack of rest during the last first half of December.

Exercise

If there’s one area that I wish I could do more of while on this break – it’s exercise.  Getting to the gym is less convenient when I’m out of the office, and my days have been more consumed with the family and kids during the time off.  It’s probably been good to have a week off from lifting to allow my body to repair and recover.

Diet

I’ve stayed consistent with Paleo during vacation – and being home has allowed me to cycle more variety into my diet each day and vary my meal times and sizes according to my hunger more.