“It is a rough road that leads to the heights of greatness.” Lucius Annaeus Senators

Before delving into my ongoing diet and exercise endeavors, let me first fill you all in on what I’ve been doing these last several weeks, and revelations that I have made.

First, SO MUCH PRACTICING! My Alma mater — Emporia State University (stingers up!) — is having a reunion for anyone who ever participated in marching band there. It’s taking place homecoming weekend, October 20. I cannot show up there with my chops all weak and out of shape! So, I did what all good brass players do, we dig out all our trusty technique books and rebuild. I’ve already become pretty strong again, I never really stopped playing so my technique was never completely lost, but without regular groups to play with it makes it tough to keep up. My endurance is what has suffered most. Today, however, I made it through a solid hour of non-stop playing, woooo! Nothing intense, and not all the way up in the stratosphere (just up to some high A’s and B flats), but I’m getting it back.

Second, I’ll discuss a revelation I’ve had over the last 2 weeks…I have not lived a hard life. My baby soft, smooth hands are proof of that. Not a callus, not a patch of rough skin, only a tiny scar on my left thumb from when I sliced my thumb cutting a watermelon. Yes, I am thankful I have had it pretty easy. Growing up, I didn’t have to work, except if I wanted to during the summer. I have never done hard, manual labor like all the men in my family. This has become painfully, and I mean literally painfully, obvious since I have been relearning guitar.

I restrung my guitar a few weeks ago and have been trying to relearn enough to be able to play along with my preschoolers next fall. Oh. My. Fingertips. Ow, ow, ow! I’ll admit it, I’m soft, I have very pampered hands — these strings are torture! But, on the guitar front, I have already made great strides. I have found that I am the queen of one finger chords! One other problem for me with this instrument is the fact that I have small hands. Playing full chords is a stretch for these short fingers — not impossible, but I’m having to build up some serious finger strength. Also, after 30 years of playing horn, my left pinky is absolutely worthless! It’s spent 3 decades hooked on a finger rest, and now that I need it to do some work it’s being a whiny little brat and refusing to do what I ask! I’ll get there, though, I know I will. It’s not like I’m relearning guitar because I think at age 39 I might try my hand at singer-songwriter stardom, I’m just doing it for the kids, y’all. 😍

Alright, enough about me and my weak chops and soft hands, back to the diet! My Fitbit has been instrumental in this process lately. I have made it a goal to light up all of my points of data: minimum of 10,000 steps, floors, miles, calories burned, and minutes of cardio exercise. This has been a huge motivator to keep moving throughout my day. Running a daycare in which I care for small infants, it’s tough to keep moving when I sit so much feeding babies and rocking them to sleep. I can go an hour sometimes without hardly moving, but my Fitbit will buzz at me and remind me to get up and move. I haven’t lost a ton of weight over the last few weeks, but I have lost a little — most importantly, I haven’t gained any weight back!

I have also been wearing my Fitbit to sleep, which has brought on more revelations about my crappy sleep habits. I know that I need 7-8 hours a sleep to feel fully rested and refreshed. I typically get a little over 5 hours. 😕

I have GOT to figure out how to fix this. I have a suspicion that if I were to actually get the amount of sleep I need each night, the weight loss will come a little easier. It sounds as easy as just putting my butt to bed earlier, but there’s always too much to clean up and put away, the hubs and I barely see each other except in the late evenings so we hang out and watch tv after the kids go to sleep, and the biggest thing is that even if I do force myself to sleep early I usually lay there awake for hours. Last one to sleep, first one up…*sigh* I don’t mind being the first one up though, introvert mom likes her mornings quiet while sipping my coffee. But this lack of sleep is still killing me, I don’t know how to fix it and keep everyone from getting pissed at me thinking I am trying to avoid them or ignore them. I JUST NEED TO SLEEP, GUYS!

I’m still thinking on the pictures and videos, uuuuuggggghhhh. We’ll see, folks, we’ll see. I need to build up some courage for this, I’m not someone who takes endless selfies and constantly updates my profile pictures. I just figure, I don’t feel the need to look at myself all the time, so it’s hard for me to understand why others want to look at me all the time. But maybe… eventually… I might start posting some pics of me.

Music for tonight…my 7 year old is completely obsessed with The Greatest Showman right now. Now I have it stuck in my head, too! Tonight’s selection is “A Million Dreams” from the soundtrack, I love how it transitions from the little kids into the adult versions of them. I hope no one ever stops dreaming, we all need things to work towards no matter how big or small, and most importantly no matter our age. It’s never too late.

G’night, all!

~~ Amie


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