Tag Archives: water

How to Alleviate Sleepiness (better) [Lessons from 2021]

11 Jan

-water alleviates tiredness more than caffeine

-a walk helps get rid of sleepiness

Sounds like something some health-nut would tell you.  Believe me, despite all the things I’ve listed here that may seem extreme–I am not really healthy, and it’s NOT my focus. It’s just that little repeated efforts really do add up.

I live in a desert so water is crucial. The air is dry, and it gets pretty hot. Plus any exercise, sweating, sugar, salt, caffeine further depletes hydration. So I always try to drink water throughout the day. And it is true-being hydrated feels like having more energy.  Caffeine just made me jittery or more irritable.  Water, I’m talking a LOT of extra water, does help.  But like, a lot.  Like 30 cups by lunch.  And you actually legitimately feel better. 

I suggest working up to it. And I’m telling you getting 4 cups a day is the biggest hurdle when you haven’t really been mindful. Because drinking extra will make you pee extra. And you just don’t feel thirsty. I know. But if you can just make a habit of getting 4 cups of water in the earliest possible in the day–any above and beyond that are really not a big deal. I don’t know why. I don’t make the rules.

Also, aside from water, taking vitamin B helps energy. That’s why they put so much of it in energy drinks. And vitamin B without all the caffeine won’t dehydrate you, which actually makes you feel more tired (think hangovers). So vit B in the morning, and at that afternoon slump. Best part about that, it’s not going to keep you up all night like a late coffee/tea might.

Another thing that helped us feel less tired is another counterintuitive thing. Walking on lunch and after work.  It was way more helpful than sitting, which actually made us feel more tired.  So get that heart rate up next time you’re sleepy and wishing for a nap during the work day!

And you know what I found out makes me most tired of all?  Living in an extrovert’s world.  I used to be exhausted on most work days when we had to go to the building (vs. working from home).  Just the anxiety of second-guessing every facial expression, how fast I was walking, each interaction was tiring.  Now that I’m at home working after work I just feel normal.  I don’t get tired for several more hours.

I’m still working on energy though. I’m often very tired and dragging a$$, so any other tips would be helpful.

The out of shape phase

3 Jan

I suspect some people never push past this 7-10 day horrible feeling. When you get off the couch and just start running/lifting weights/fasting/drinking water/*insert uncomfortable habit here*

When you first start, running feels horrible. You are really tired and out of breath, you get sore all over, and your feet hurt. It super-sucks. You feel like even the shortest distance is so long, and you’re sweating like a maniac. And running after that–on top of the prior day’s soreness… It’s actually awful.

Lifting weights. At first even the 5lb feel so heavy. You have to be cheat-y on the reps, either skipping some or half-assing the form. Your arms wanna float to the ceiling when you’re done. Your muscles tremor, and even lifting a coffee cup is taxing for your arm. Every. Step. Hurts. The shaking and weakness. And the days after that are nearly impossible!

Skipping that 1st meal plain sucks. You feel weak and headachy. Your mind is preoccupied with food, and every fast food commercial and Taco Bell ad on Spotify is a personal affront designed to torture you. You daydream of burgers and dips and cake… You feel pale and horrible. Light-headed and shaky. Your stomach won’t shut up! Water makes it worse. The hours go by ever so slowly…

You try to drink more water. But it makes you feel full, and maybe like you’ll throw up. You drink and the water doesn’t taste good. It’s plain, it’s boring. You’re overly full. You are not at all thirsty. And you’re peeing every 2 min. Like, your boss is giving you the side-eye b/c you’re going to the dirty, public bathroom so much. You are only halfway to your water goal, and feel discouraged and like you may explode.

I get it. I’ve been there. All of these things are everything I’ve felt, and they are the worst. But do you know what’s even worse? The guilt, regret, failure of quitting before the 2 week mark. You never get into a groove and feel the benefits of what you’re trying to do. I promise it gets better by the 7-10th day. If you just stick with it!!! I am NOT miss fitness. I am actually very lazy, and love watching TV and snuggling with kitties. But b/c I finally stuck with these things, I can feel a difference between that ugly out-of-shape phase and maintenance.

It never feels amazing, I’m not going to lie to you, and I’m not one of those insane people who like fasting or running–that shit is crazy (or lies). But I promise, promise, promise all of those things suck a lot less when you’re a little used to them. And what IS awesome is the the long-term benefits and sense of accomplishment from following through all those things.

The running stops being owie. Your cardiovascular, muscles, and feet DO get used to it, and every sec doesn’t feel like an eternity. Running is good cardio so my heart and lungs are strong. My legs are also toned. I feel good when I reach speed or distance goals. And I always, always feel like I did at least 1 productive thing when I run. Even if that’s the only thing I did that day!

Lifting weights adds years to your life. It also makes you look good in a tank top–and who doesn’t enjoy that? Incorporating strength allows you to do more in your daily life. Carry that heavy cat litter, no problem. Lift that railroad tie in the yard like a beast. Be tough and independent. And you do end up being able to do every rep with good form, and even increasing weight! And most times I’m maybe a little sore like I worked, but not sore to walk and sit and roll over in my sleep anymore.

Fasting cuts down those calories without going without your favorite foods. You don’t have to give up all carbs or stop drinking your wine. Fasting makes your mind more focused. It helps me lose weight more than any of the daily exercise I do (unfortunately). And that meal that breaks your fast? Tastes so damn good! I had a few times that it was a breeze too. Play with the times you start and stop, as changing from a dinner-dinner fast over to 10 AM lunch (anywhere in that 2 hr range) zone for 24 hours made a HUGE difference.

And finally, drinking water helps you feel more energized, makes your skin look younger and softer, eases digestion, gives your hair a sleeker look, helps you fight heat, keeps your salt in check, so many benefits I can’t list them all here. And you stop peeing every fucking minute when you drink a lot and your body gets used to it.

So please, any resolutions you made: Stick to them for at least 2 weeks, and it does get easier and less sucky.

Work From Home

11 May

My company is adamantly against letting any of us work from home–ever.  But this pandemic forced them to have to allow it.  Because we work in an open room with recirculated AC and the 157 claims people share 2 bathrooms (and they shut down 1 for cleaning twice daily making the whole building share 1 bathroom) with the call center people on the opposite side of the building.

So we’ve been working from home since March 15.

And I love everything about it:

-I sleep better because I don’t have that anticipatory wakefulness trying to make the schedule.

-I use less utilities because I shower every other day since no one will see my 2nd day greasy, slept-on hair.

-Getting ready for work is low maintenance, because I don’t have to adhere to dress code, put on makeup, fix my hair, or prepare the house and cats for being gone all day.

-I can open all the windows in the cool mornings to use less utilities later in the day on cooling, because I have more time to open them, then I’m home to close them up only when the temp = inside.

-I can work outside on the patio and get some fresh air.

-I don’t have to think about the public bathroom:

*do people think I’m going too frequently?

*are they shutting one or the other down for cleaning so they’re more crowded?

*It’s my rule to pee only in the bathroom–but sometimes that makes for an uncomfortable day.

*What if I have to make embarrassing sounds or smells?

*other people are disgusting and shameless in the bathroom.

*the bathroom is an unpleasant mess!

*Touching anything in there is gross

*it’s a rule of mine to get in and out of the bathroom as quick as possible!

*I don’t like to talk in the bathroom, because of what molecules are floating around–but coworkers and leadership find it socially unacceptable not to say anything…

*I spend a huge amount of my work day worrying about the public bathroom…

-I drink more water because it’s easier to get and see above.

-I save tons of time just eating from the fridge.  I don’t have to spend bunches of time on weekends meal prepping lunches to just grab and go.

-I can pet the kitties any old time I want to.  And fill their water, or top off their food during the day, instead of rushing around in the morning trying to remember, or forcing myself to do it when I’m tired at night.

-Between claims, I can just, say empty the dish drainer, and do little chores.  Instead of having to do it after work, after our workout, when I’m very tired.  Or on the weekends.

-I can have things delivered during the day.

-I don’t have to worry about interactions with my coworkers.

-I don’t have to worry about my coworkers spreading germs (this was a concern of mine even prior to covid, b/c the gal behind me does not cover her coughs or sneezes and I can feel the air on the back of my hair and neck).  Also, we have that recirculated air.

-I don’t have to see my jerk supervisor face to face or have any awkward in-person interactions with him.

-I don’t have to plan my time-table around traffic.  I don’t have the stress of driving with fucking idiots.  I don’t pay as much gas, and the wear and tear on our cars is less.

-Asking questions at work is much less stressful, because everyone has to do everything in writing (my preferred form of communication).  I used to get nervous to ask, nervous when people came to my desk, awkward about what to say when I didn’t have time to plan it or check it, and nervous about people sharing their germs.

-Meetings are better.  I could listen to the meeting while swiffering my floors.

-We can do sit-ups on our breaks, b/c nobody else will see us, and we’re not in our nice work clothes.

-We can dance for a couple min every hour b/c there is no chance for anyone to see us.

-We can dress in our workout clothes last break so we’re ready to start our workout right after we clock out.

-Since we start our workouts so much earlier without driving and changing, we are also finished much earlier.

-I am not nearly as tired or fatigued after working from home, probably because I wasn’t exhausted by all the social interactions and factors of the job.  I’m fretting and preoccupied a lot by other people and the schedule when I’m at physical work.  As a result, we do our cardio, strength, and abs every single day, instead of lazying out a couple times a week!

-I’m less tired and stressed in general.

-Our timeline is more relaxed, and as a result so am I.

-Because we are able to get more done throughout the work day and during the week, there is more leisure time on weekends.  Instead of all our logistics stacking up like usual.

 

Also, I don’t know why we can’t always work from home.  At the quarterly meeting, they said we made production records since we’ve worked from home.  I don’t see why corporations are always so hot on dragging their employees into a physical location when people enjoy having work:life balance.  And the traffic impacts are exponential.  I could see if we were screwing around, not making our numbers, and making tons more mistakes–but it’s the exact opposite.  Yet we are being called back in probably June 1st–which is too soon b/c AZ doesn’t peak until June 7.  I’m sure they’ll pull the “essential worker” card, even though we are fully capable of doing 100% of our work from home.

I wish I could work from home all the time, forever!

 

goals achieved in 2019 and goals for 2020

2 Jan

-kept up on in-a-row runs

On January 2nd, I will have run at least 1 mile every day in a row for 6 years and 1 day!  2192 days in a row!  Go me.  At this point, this one would be harder to break than follow.  So it you’re dedicated, in-a-rows really do work.  Pick one habit that’s really important to you and try it.

 

-continued making a weekly menu, grocery list, and sticking to that at the store.  And shopping at Winco.

We stuck to this pretty well, and it worked.  We just have to continue maintaining it.

-Continued to put on makeup and fix my hair every day for work.  
I wore makeup every day.  And I fix my hair!
-Drink 12 cups of water a day.
This one varies depending where I am, what I’m doing, the temperature, etc…  I have mostly been very good about drinking water.
-went to the doctor.
Did it.  Will probably have to do it again soon.  Don’t enjoy it.  Mostly because I hate logistics and having my schedule messed up.  But I need to get my Rx renewed and also find a dermatologist.
-dentist twice a year.
fail.  I need to find a new dentist now that I have a real job with real insurance.  It’s on my calendar.

-Floss daily.

I flossed 197 days last year.  53.97% of the time.  That’s just about 3.5 days per week.  I mean, I’ll take it.  Tiredness is most certainly a factor.  But hopefully it’s a little better in 2020.  I will try to get it done earlier in the day this year–that might help.

-workout at least 5 days a week.
We worked out (above and beyond the mile) 165 days last year says my Daylio app.  That’s 45% of the time, which is a lot better than I thought!  We can (and will) do better, but I’ll take nearly half of the time.  It’s built into our work day schedule, but it gets a lot harder on holidays and sometimes weekend, or when it’s very cold or hot, or the afore-mentioned appointments.  I think once we get into the routine we’ll want to do it and it will be easy to keep up.
-cook at home and meal prep on weekends to make the week easier.
Mostly.  And it sure helps a lot.  We live cheaper and make better choices when the food is waiting for us.  As I was standing at work today, I decided I need to give us more credit for this one.  It’s a lifestyle change and it’s cool that we’ve managed it a lot of the time.  I keep food ideas on my Google calendar.  Then we make a menu or what we feel like, or what a holiday or event dictates.  Then break it down into ingredients.  And that becomes the shopping list.  Which I write in the order of the layout of the store we go to so it’s fast to grab things.  Then we 98% stick to the list at the store, only putting things in the cart that are on our list.  Then we do a cooking.  And put things into split tupperwares for every day at lunch (saves money, saves calories), and put the rest in bigger tupperwares to grab throughout the week.  It takes some time but I get hangry a lot and having things at the ready keeps my decisions cheaper and healthier.
-pay off the Visa. 
I submitted double the minimum every month, but there is still money on it.  Moving and unemployment made it a little crazier than I’d like.  But it’s a work in progress.  It wasn’t for lack of trying.
-read.
Failed.  I started off with very technical 800 page book, then slogged through it.  By the time I finished I was a little burned out.  Then, all the commuting ate up my time.  And changing jobs was a whole big thing.  Etc, etc…  This next year we’re going to ease back into it by reading at least 10 min a day because that’s just 1% of my waking hours so I don’t feel overwhelmed by that.

 

Ok, so all of that.  And in 2020:

 

Save money for a car before November.

Do that by eating out and ordering in less.  Get what we can from the dollar store.  Price compare between Amazon, Walmart, and Costco when getting non-grocery items.  Do bountiful baskets to eat more produce and save money.  Use less, waste less.

 

More time for creative endeavors.

Spend 1% of waking hours doing each thing.  We’re setting the interval timer app to do 4 times of 10 minutes.  Each 10 min segment works out to 0.9% of our waking hours.  So even though I get antsy and feel like I need to be doing something “important” it is so much easier to think of it as a small portion of my day.  Makes it more manageable.  I think as we get in the groove, we can add more activities or lengthen time spent, but one thing at a time.  I just want to make a habit of including creativity into every day.

 

I might add more goals later, depending on how the ones on this list go.  And I think I’m going to do the monthly evaluation blogs again, because those really helped me keep tabs and stay accountable.

2016 Goal-Plan

5 Jan

I have to be in a certain mood to really write, and though I want to be–today I’m just not.  Tuesday is my most tired day of the week, so maybe that had everything to do with it.  I’ll try though, because I do see the new year as a perfect time for new beginnings, and per the usual I want to grow as a person and be better.  I’ve catagorized my goals and plan to MAKE plans of actions to attack them.

element fairy

BODY

things I’m already doing, or kind of doing

-running.  I’ve certainly been running and it’s a good stabilizing force, and probably the most healthful thing I do.  Though I’m not going to lie–nearly every single day (and this is day 733 in a row) I want to lazy out.  At this point it would take a LOT to make me break the chain, because that many days in a row is spectacular, but it’s pretty hard to get the motivation to put on that sports bra.  I’ll continue on, for who knows how long.  [time-line:  daily]

-water.  I’ve been drinking it daily like I never used to.  I’m trying to get all 12 cups per day (to account for sweating in heat/working out/eating salt/drinking caffeine) and it’s hard.  They key is drinking as much as I can early in the day.   [time-line:  daily, and early in the day]

-flossing.  It seems a constant battle.  Obviously, I want to do it, but it’s just a matter of DOING it, which is often easier said then done.  I think I’ve been pretty successful at doing it before I brush my teeth for work.  In the afternoon, before I’m really tired.   [time-line:  daily, and before I brush my teeth for work]

-Appearance is just one of those things that isn’t SUPER important to me.  I’m a very low-maintenance gal when it comes to grooming and beauty.  But, in the interest of just feeling more motivated for work and looking mature and everything, I’d like to continue wearing makeup on work days (except Sunday, when nobody really sees me and I’m there for 10+ hours).   [time-line:  daily, before work]

things to start

-Going to the dentist!  And this is for sure happening this year.  I’ll get insurance through my work, so just as soon as it kicks in, I’m making the call.  I’ve already research dentists here, and plan on getting the full cleaning, and all x-rays, then setting up a regular 6 month schedule.  What a relief!   [time-line:  call Tuesday, the 12th of January]

-I need to pain my nails more.  It’s an easy thing to do and I have a lot of pretty colors.   [time-line:  Fridays, during the day]

-And I should wear my beautiful jewelry more.  Those are really easy things that add an extra touch of niceness.   [time-line:  Monday, Wednesday, +/- Thursday]

-I’d also like to take more care fixing my hair.  Instead of a pony-tail, maybe a braid or rows, or a nice barrette.  And, as a more expensive, and long-term thing, this year I’d like to start permanently dying my hair.  To cover all those grays cropping up.  I need to schedule a consult to see what the EASIEST color would be so I can just go as far apart as possible and get my roots touched-up after the initial appointment.  Which won’t necessarily be a color I like, but it will get the job done and be cheaper and lower maintenance.   [time-line:  Monday, Thursday to start]

Erin_Hanson_The_Path

MIND

things I’m already doing, or kind of doing

-I am such a different person than I used to be.  I have learned not to make work my life.  I’m not centering everything around it, or letting myself get stressed out over it.  I don’t even check what color tasks I will be responsible for the next week when I’m there on Sundays.   [time-line:  daily]

things to start

-reading more for pleasure.  I want to do the book challenge that specifies different types of books.  The trouble will be finding the time in the week to just sit and read.  I think on a daily basis, between work, tiredness, it’s difficult just to get my run in.  But on my days off and especially on Sundays I think I can make time.  And three days a week of reading is still more then I’m doing now.   [time-line:  Friday, Saturday, Sunday]

-read/outline my undergrad textbooks and notebooks.  This will serve 2 purposes:  1)  it will utilize some of that money I’m paying in school-loans and not make my degree seem quite so pointless.  I feel like I’m paying all this money back, yet I never USED my education for anything.  2)  I might learn the material better without the pressure of multiple classes, regurgitating info for tests, and papers and projects.  I can learn the stuff at my pace and the stuff I find interesting/important.  And a surprise 3rd advantage–I might be able to clean some of it out and get rid of it once I’ve looked at it.   [time-line:  Thursdays during the day?  Try it and see if this day works, then reevaluate]

Erin_Hanson_Crystal_Light

SPIRIT

things I’m already doing, or kind of doing

-be more consistent about adding a weekly item to my positivity jar.  I do it, but not that frequency.   [time-line:  Sunday night]

things to start

-I newed to re-start thinking of all the things I’m thankful for daily.  I really liked it, and it was an easy thing to do, which also had the benefit of re-focusing my attention from worrk to gratitude.  I just sort of fell out of the habit the less stressed and the happier I got.   [time-line:  daily, before sleeping]

-painting for enjoyment.  It’s a nice hobby that Cool and I can do together.  I want to paint light switch covers and finish my totem painting series.   [time-line:  Friday or Saturday, twice a month]

erinhanson4

CLEAN/ORGANIZE

things I’m already doing, or kind of doing

-keep up on apartment cleaning schedule.  This should be OK and easy, because I can’t live with the mess.  Also, I have calender reminders set up in a routine I like.  This will be helpful to keep on everything around home so there need not be any huge cleaning days and at move out we hopefully will not have a Riverton Terrace clean-up/fine situation.   [time-line:  follow calender]

-make a shopping list.  I always do this, but lately it’s been more of a long-term list then is really helpful.  I need to buy the items at least twice a month and start a new list.   [time-line:  as needed]

 

things to start

-scan all my photos and back them up on my external hard-drive to cut down on albums.   [time-line:  tomorrow–get it done ASAP]

-Also consolidate my scrapbooks, and make power-points or DVDs of some of the materials to save space (and future moving hassle).   [time-line:  next Wednesday, January 13th]

-set a consistent grocery shopping day!  Problem is I hate it.  But in order to cook, I need ingredients on hand, so this has to happen.  I think every other Sunday after work will be a less-busy convenient day (relatively) to go.   [time-line:  every other Sunday, starting January 17th]

erinhanson5

SOCIAL

things I’m already doing, or kind of doing

-I have also learned not to place the expectations I have for myself on people at work.  Through experience, I realized that only creates social problems and makes me stressed and resentful.  People aren’t going to have my drive or dedication, and it’s not my problem.  So a huge goal is to keep that up, because I really am bunches happier for it.   [time-line:  continuous]

-make a firm cooking date with Cool.  We love to cook together and it makes the following week a lot smoother.  Friday or Saturday depending on what else is going on will work well.   [time-line:  Saturday, January 9th]

 

things to start

-2015 was AWFUL for blogging!  I didn’t do it, when I did it felt like an obligation, and it wasn’t too technically great of writing either–much like that last sentence.  Partially, it was because 2015 was such a transitional year.  Partially, I was too tired and adjusting to a new work schedule.  And it didn’t happen a lot, because I was happy hanging out with Cool, and didn’t want to “step away” to write by myself.  This year, I aim to be better than that, though I don’t know if I will go so far as to impose deadlines or post-numbers on myself.  After all, it supposed to be fun.   [time-line:  write again Thursday or Friday this week]

Joel K tree

May Goal Accountability [more of a new-goal brainstorm]

3 Jun

Now, a short break before I write about the rest of the move.  Yes–there’s a 2nd leg!  But just like I had one week to “rest” and unpack, you get one post to refresh.

Normally, this would be time to evaluate my monthly progress on my New Year’s Resolutions.  But there is a reason the statistics are against actually accomplishing those goals:  It’s difficult to write specific, reasonable ones that are pertinent at one time of the year.  And I’ve had a lot of life changes this year already, so I have to do a re-set.  That’s OK, I’ll pursue other goals.

I’m still very excited to maintain:

1.  run at least 1 mile 1st thing in the morning every day.

2.  Drink 12 cups of water a day.

splash

As for Audiology goals.  Here’s the thing–despite my 4.0 and volunteerism, experiance, and tutoring.  I am 2nd on a wait-list.  And you know what that means.  I’ve been 2nd, 7th, and 13th on veterinary wait-lists.  I’m much less starry-eyed now, so I’m taking it as a no.  But I didn’t freak out.  But I also don’t know what my plan is either. . .

2015 Aspirations (in no particular order):

-read

-Collect a minimum of 2/mo positive moments in a jar

-Floss daily and brush twice daily for an adequate time

-rekindle more romance and good feeling with Cool.  Really SHOW more love.  Be sweet = make a spontaneous gesture, do something for her, that I maybe don’t normally do.

-Make a menu, do a grocery list, grocery shop, cook.

-walk, do weights, circuits, plyo–stay active in this sedentary job.

-brainstorm my next step and long-term life goals, then create steps to achieve them.

-make time to blog

I’ll try to think of more or just refine these

Water to Urine (just in case you were curious)

24 Aug

I really want to continue drinking 8+ cups of water each day.  And the best way to day that is to get them in early.  Which is easier said then done when there are items on the agenda.  When I’m home all day or when I set my own schedule–no problem.  But when class and work dictates my time, peeing becomes a big factor.  There is nothing worse then being stuck somewhere and having to use the bathroom really bad.  Concentration suffers, you can’t be still, the public restroom may become a necessity, and nobody likes that story.  I hate public bathrooms.  They’re dirty, not private, and it’s not super convenient when I want to get a seat, pay attention in class or work hard as the case may be.

So in preparation of resuming school and work I timed my drinking and urinary habits for 11 days.  Then I can average the time between when water is consumed and when I have to pee.  This will allow me to figure out the window I need to finish my water in order not to have the urge to use the bathroom when I’m out & about.

splash

Seriously, I know you’re thinking I’m insane right now–but this makes a lot of sense.  Here’s the info gleaned from my experiment (just the time-interval between water and urination):

D1:  3 hr 10 min

D2:  2 hr 5-10 min

D3:  45 min earliest, 3 hours last

D4:  40 min 1st to 2.5 hr last

D5:  1 hr & 2 hr

D6:  2 hr

D7:  1 hr & 3 hr 40 min

D8:  30 min

D9:  30 min 1st to 1 hr 15 min last

D10:  Coffee became involved, confounding results, so I threw this day’s data out

D 11:  1 hr 1st to 1 hr 45 min

Sutro Pool Party 017

With all data (excluding day 10) that’s an average of 2 hours 11 minutes between.

The soonest I had to go was an average of 1 hour

The average of the last time I had to pee post water was 2 hours 35 minutes

That means I can drink water for my 11AM class anywhere from 8-10AM without having to use the bathroom.

And for my 10 AM class my water drinking window is 7-9AM.

For work, I have from 5-7PM on Thursday and 12:30-2:30PM on weekends.