The Thanksgiving holiday gave me the opportunity to have a nice, slow start to my week on Monday.
I took Khalee for a walk and, even though it was windy, I took time to tune into my surroundings, noticing how the leaves have changed (or fallen), how the river noises are quieter, and how everything smells a little different right now.
When I came home, I took down the load of clothes I had hung earlier. (It was a fine day on clothes, as the saying goes.) This task can be pretty mundane (or even boring) but today it was routine in a good way – repetitive actions with positive results.
As I turned with my basket of clean clothes, I noticed how inviting my swing looked and I remembered how much I enjoyed meditating while sitting there cross-legged the other day.
So I decided to meditate there again today.
And that brings me to 51 days of meditation in a row.
When I opened the Insight Timer app today, it offered this very appropriate quote for how I felt at the end of my meditative afternoon:
Mental health is not a destination, but a process. It’s about how you drive, not where you’re going.
– NOAM SHPANCER, PHD
I liked how, today, I have ‘driven’ myself calm instead of driving myself around the proverbial bend.
Wishing you all ease for the week ahead. Please try not to cram 5 days of work into a 4 day week. 💚⭐️
I’ve been working hard on the weekend lately. There’s just too much going on. I’m dean. I’m teaching a grad seminar. There’s the usual house stuff. I’ve got three kids who are in their 20s and visiting them these days requires some ingenuity and coordination, thanks to the pandemic.
This weekend was no exception really except for some scheduled bike rides. I’m glad I got to ride and I got to see my adult kids. I did a bunch of work but it also felt like a weekend, if you know what I mean.
Friday is the TFC’s, my Zwift bike club, namesake ride, The Friday Crit. This week’s route was RGV in France. I like the route, all beautiful scenery and rolling hills. Except at the start I got a flat in my real world bike on the trainer! I stopped. Sarah put more air in the tire and I worked hard to catch my teammate Keith who’d been riding slowly and waiting up. He’s in the blue cap below. I’m in the pink. Speaking of colours, that’s a lot of red in the screen capture below! That’s time in my highest effort zone. I ended up finishing, with Keith, and some others, somewhere in the middle of the pack. I was proud of catching up to Keith and the others and proud that in the end I took the women’s sprint jersey.
Total distance: 4 km warm up + 25 km race (45 minutes)
Saturday Sarah and I rode for pleasure, not speed, on our gravel bikes, in the outside world, on another section of the Guelph to Goderich rail trail. We started in Monkton, Ontario and covered about 16 km of the trail. At our meandering pace that took about an hour, including stops to pick apples and take photos! Some sections were wide open in farm fields, while other bits had lots of beautiful trees with gorgeous fall colours. If you’re in southwestern Ontario, I strongly recommend this trail. Even on a Saturday it was pretty quiet. The gravel is well packed and it’s easy riding.
Total distance: 16 km, about one hour
Sunday saw me back on Zwift for my club’s Sunday social ride, 6 laps around the volcano circuit in Watopia. We have a group leader with a yellow beacon who keeps the set pace of about 2 watts per kilo. This week we were so well disciplined at keeping the pace that the leader didn’t have to turn on the fence. We had lots of new riders along and team regulars kept up answering questions in the chat. We chose to race the last lap and after staying a steady pace until then it was fun to let go and go fast for the final 4 km. Whee! A fun thing for me was getting some PRs on the route and getting faster pretty much every lap, especially the last one.
Total distance: 30 km, about 50 minutes
Thanks to my friend Rob who let us use his backyard and propane heater for visiting with the London kids. My daughter Mallory is just back from a 3 day solo hiking and camping trip. She’s promised to blog about it!
Rob’s backyard also had a disco light which we all enjoyed as the patterns flickered on the trees!