It’s one of the questions I am asked most often, “when are you going to start having kids?” sometimes asked by those who want us to have kids, but more often than not buy my clients who are worried about what will happen to their fitness classes if/when I get pregnant. Right now I don’t think we’re ready to have kids, that’s not to say that if I did become pregnant we wouldn’t be happy and excited about expanding our family, but for now I’m happy being childless. Why? Let me introduce you to two reasons:
Pekoe and Ollie.
The amount of work those two furry felines require is insane. I know you’re thinking – I have a cat, it’s not that much work. This is true, for most cats, just not these two. I’ve had cats before. Cats that you threw food at once or twice a day, made sure they had a bowl of water and clean their kitty litter once a week and your golden. Here and there they want to be played with and brushed but for the most part they are independent beings. This is not the way things roll around here.
Sir Pekoe is a boy cat, and being such is prone to crystals in his bladder. After one emergency surgery, and few close calls he was taken off dry cat food and put on a prescription wet cat food that cost something like $1.50/can. I don’t know how much exactly because I don’t really want to know. I go buy a case once a month and pretend I don’t know how much it costs. Now one would think you could just throw 1/2 a can or so of food at him a couple times a day and things would be hunky dory right Wrong. Pekoe doesn’t know how to pace himself. If he gets too hungry, or is left too long between meals he gobbles his food too quickly and end up throwing up all over the place. Now remember he is eating this crazy expensive food – we want that crap to stay in him, and not be all over the rug. Solution? We feed him smaller meals throughout the day. And when I say throughout I mean th-ro-u-gh-out. He rarely goes more than 6 hours without food. And since we are feeding him we need to feed Ollie or she get’s all bent out of shape. Here is a typical day of cat feedings, let’s just call it the number one reason why I don’t have kids – I’m already tired.
6:00 am breakfast
12:00 pm lunch
5:00 pm supper
9:00 pm snack
11:00 pm snack #2
12:00am snack #3
Yes people, we are feeding these cats 6 times/day. Lucky for me J almost always feeds them in the morning (since he often has to get up for work early anyway) and I normally end up feeding them the late “shift.” For example, today I taught 4 classes and am dead tired, but I have to stay up until midnight to feed the cats even though I have to get up and go teach a 9am class because J has to be to work for 6:30 am. Now I know babies require way more work with feedings, but surely after 6 years they learn to sleep through the night. These two always make us stay up late and get up early. It stinks.
Reason number two – I’m already busy cleaning up poop, pee and puke. We now have three different kitty litter boxes in our house. We only have two cats. We have to clean all three boxes at least 3 times/week or else Pekoe will decide that they are not clean enough for him and he will pee on the floor. Please understand it’s not because he is having problems, it’s it purely because he is a jerk. If the kitty litter is clean he’ll use it, he is just really such a diva. Oh and did I mention he will only use the kitty litter box if it’s filled with a certain brand of kitty litter? And of course it’s a crazy expensive brand. What a jerk.
Another reason he’s a jerk is because when he has a hair ball or throws up his food (see above about eating too quickly) he always had to do it on something. A rug, a blanket, a chair. He doesn’t seem to be able to throw up on ceramic tile or laminate that is easy to clean.
And then there is Ollie.
To make a long and somewhat disconcerting story shorter and less graphic Ollie has a constipation problem . A few years ago she had to go to the vet for a series of enemas. When I went to pick her up the vet called me in to see her x-ray. This short little cat was completely and totally full of poop. Now she has to have fibre laxative added to her meals to keep her regular. So now we are feeding the cats six times/day, one cat is having prescription food to prevent crystals in his bladder, the other is having watered down wet food with fibre laxative in it. Which means you can’t just throw food in their dishes and be done with it, you need to take the time to prepare each bowl with the right food, and make sure it is prepared in a fashion that Pekoe won’t eat to quickly and throw up, and that will give Ollie enough water and laxative to keep her regular.
This past weekend someone (me) was neglect in giving Ollie her laxative. She got constipated. She was having issues and then started rubbing her bum on the floor because it was poopy. We had to run around cleaning the floors after and her bum, and then Pekoe she’s her doing that and thinks, “what a great idea! Why bother cleaning myself if I can just rub my bum on the rug instead?” God times.
Moving right along, reason number three – I’ve got a co-dependant cat. Remember that statement earlier about cats being independent? Well that’s most true for Pekoe, unless he wants something he normally could care less what you’re doing, but this is not the case with Ollie. She needs someone with her at all times. I think she is a cat stuck in a dog’s body. She greets everyone that comes to the door, loves everyone, kisses everyone and in general is a very friendly little feline. But she hates to be alone. We leave a TV on anytime we leave so that she has company, but at least once a day we will find her wandering around with Gwyneth (her pet spider) in her mouth crying like someone is murdering her – simply because she wants attention.
We have to make sure Gwyneth is in our bedroom at night or she will go get her and start crying. Sometimes she will substitute an old blush brush we gave her for Gwyneth in an emergency (meaning she doesn’t know where her spider is). That spider is old, and gross but we don’t have the heart to get rid of it because she loves it so much.
Reason number four – my house is already a destruction zone. I’m well aware that when babies/kids come along you house tends to get over run with their stuff. Well right now my house can’t handle to be over run with anything else. Because Pekoe is a jerk, he won’t use a scratching post like a normal cat (Ollie on the other hand has worn out a few scratching posts) so he chooses to ruin our furniture. To try and combat that we cover our furniture with blankets and pillows every night before bed. It looks like some crazy gypsy house with all these different fabrics strewn everywhere. It’s awful. And then there are the boxes. To give the goof something to scratch we keep an empty cardboard box in the living room for him to tear up. He scratches it and Ollie bites it. She’s actually broken one of tips off of one of her little fangs from biting stuff. So we flip the box during the day so she can’t bite it, and then have to remember to flip it back at night (which is when Pekoe likes to do his claw sharpening) before we go to bed. It’s nuts.
Reason number five – despite all of the reasons above, I still love both of those furry beasts and for now am happy to continue on with their craziness (although I sincerely hope this peeing on the floor business has wrapped up). My mother (who gets stuck taking care of them when we are away) says if she had, had our cats before she had kids as a test to see if she would be a good mother she never would have had kids. That must say something that a woman who had three babies thinks these two cats are more trouble than a baby.
Now that I’ve confirmed my status as a crazy cat lady, I must go – it’s it’s almost time to feed the cats what we lovingly refer to around here as “twelvsies”
Hi friends! I hope you have all had a good day. I was off today so I wandered around the house doing laundry, finding homes for some things J’s parents dropped off on the weekend, and some general cleaning – nothing exciting.
Now back to my weekend mini-trip. Yesterday’s post finished up with us having breakfast Saturday morning. Like I mentioned in that post we woke up to find the weather absolutely lovely, unlike the icky rain they had been calling for the night before
which made this girl pretty happy because I was really looking forward to a trip to the public gardens and down to the waterfront. Off we went to check out of the hotel, put our stuff in the car and hopped across the street to Halifax’s Public Gardens (which I hadn’t been to since 1992)
leave it to a girl from the country to go to the city only to be excited by a duck
Does it concern anyone else that we need to not only be warned about this?
Once we’d had our fill of ducks and flowers, we took a stroll downhill to Halifax Harbour
When we reached the waterfront, we made the first purchase of the day…
Okay…well maybe not, but wouldn’t it have been awesome if we did? I love that there is like a built-in couch/lounge on the front for people to hang out on!
Of course the highlight for me was our visit to this little store:
I’m not really sure if Cows is strictly an Atlantic Canada thing, or if they are all over Canada, I’m thinking it’s just in the Atlantic Provinces but I certainly could be mistaken. Anyway, Cows has the best iced cream. Period. It’s crazy yummy! Aside from their awesome iced cream they sell all sorts of “Cows” products. Their big thing is to take any popular brands, stars, shows, etc. and cowify (I believe I just created a new word) them. Here are a few of my favourite “cow”ed items from this trip
They also had “Super Moorio Cart”, “Justin Beefer”, “Dundler Mooflen” and countless other t-shirts, mugs, hats, etc. I wish they would have had a Moomba or Moomoolemon magnet or coffee mug, I totally would have bought one of those. In the end the only thing we bought was – you guessed it, iced cream.
peanut butter cup cup for her, boring old Oreo for him.
Sidenote: when J saw this picture he said, “what am I a giant? What kind of dinosaur hands are those!?” I must admit, the way his hand is positioned he looks like he has some weird-looking thumb. I assure you, his thumb looks totally normal in real life. lol
While it took both of us all our strength to fight off the pigeons that wanted our iced cream oh so badly, we managed to eat our iced cream and escape unharmed before we were attacked. Honestly they reminded me so much of Ollie. They’d start walking towards you, we’d say “No” and push our foot out a little bit and they would quickly veer off in another direction as though that had been their plan all along. Two seconds later, they were back and we’d do it all again. That really is the was Ollie acts anytime you have anything that even remotely resembles food. :\
Then it was time. Time to conquer the hill back up to the car.
I don’t know if the photo really does it justice, it’s a fairly steep hill. Hiking up it (in jeans – what was I thinking??) reminded me of running. You see every race I’ve ever run has been in Halifax, and all of them included a trip down and then back up this hill. As nasty as it is to walk up it, it’s 100 times worse to run up it.
Once we made it to the top I asked J if he wanted to go up to Citadel Hill to take a look around since we were already there
To which he informed me he was done climbing hills for the day. I didn’t blame him, the sun was really beating down on us, it was hot and there was certainly no shade happening up there
Which made the hill itself a prime sunbathing spot. You can just barely see one lone dude laying out in the picture above. Historical Site be damned – he was working on his tan
The rest of the afternoon/evening was spent in cooler locales – shopping malls. And after being out in the sun all morning the air conditioned stores were more than welcome! Then it was back to the Valley and our kitties (who spent the weekend with my parents).
It was a short trip, but a really fun and relaxing one.
Calling all you runners…
I’m always envious of the race times of other people, I’ve never run an under 30 minute 5K, but of course I’ve always had to run up the hill pictured above. Would you say most of your races include a crazy hill like this or do I just always choose a crazy hilly route? Certainly I’ve run 5K’s in under 30 minutes at home, maybe I just need to run a race with a less killer hill?
Hi everybody! Long time no write! Honestly, while I posted that I had nothing to say last Wednesday, I never intended to take nearly a week off from blogging. Thursday I was tired completely out and not feeling well so I slept as much as I could, and then we went away over the weekend and I chose not to take any internet devices with me (crazy right!?) so yesterday was actually the first day I was back “online” and I was bust catching up with work stuff. I do want to say thanks to all my bloggy friends who commented and emailed me while I was chilling out, it really means so much to me that you missed me <3
Now let’s back track to what I’ve been up to since I last wrote. Friday, the fella and I went to Halifax for the night. I had purchased a package with Teambuy back in like February or March for a night at the Lord Nelson Hotel. I had to book the reservation back when I got the deal and this was the random weekend I had chosen which worked out because J actually had Saturday off.
We didn’t get into the city until after 8pm, checked in and got our complimentary chocolates
mind you we only had a double bed, we’re two pretty long drinks of water (I’m 5’9″ and J’s 6’1″) and since we upgraded our own bed to a Queen back in the winter, going back to a double – even for the night was a bit rough. Seriously, it was like I had nowhere to put my arms! How on earth did we ever survive in that double bed for 6 years?
Once we checked it all out – including the cool decor in the hallway
We hit the streets looking for some nourishment. The truth is I was starving on the drive to the city and exclaimed that, “my stomach is eating itself” so I stopped at the superstore and grabbed a small package of grapes and cheese to hold me over until I could get a real supper. Thank goodness I did, those grapes were delish and the cheese kept me from dying of hunger. Okay, that might be a
huge slight exaggeration, so sue me. Sadly all the restaurants nearby were either fast food – no thanks – or snazzy, as in “the food here isn’t UC friendly.” So back we went to the hotel to hit up its pub using the $20 GC that was also included with our room package. Good choice. J good beer battered fish and chips and said it was awesome, while I got the veggie nachos. The waiter said, “are you guys quite peckish? Because the nacho platter is pretty big.” “Don’t worry, I told him…I can eat more than you’d think by looking at me.” When our food came he wasn’t kidding. The nachos were literally in a platter. A platter! Wowzers, it was then I started to rethink eating the cheese and grapes on the way down.
Sidenote: When we were in Florida, Holly & I went to our hotel’s restaurant for supper one night where I also ordered nachos (I rarely have them at home so I will order them as my meal sometimes when we go out) and the waiter there also gave me a story about the serving being huge. And it was, but it was covered in that processed cheese goo, well swimming might be a better term. The waiter bet me I couldn’t eat the whole thing, and sadly I wasn’t able to, but only because the processed cheese was making me ill. Boy, I really hate losing a food related bet like that…
The nachos were also awesome. And I am proud to say that I was indeed able to eat the entire platter. I believe the waiter was impressed. Clearly I am a freak of nature.
After eating my weight in nacho chips, cheese and veggies I
rolled back to our room and we spent the rest of the evening watching TV. Exciting pair. J had worked from 4:00am-3:00pm that day so he was only awake on account of caffeine, and I was busy digesting 30 pounds of food. Really, as lame as it sounds sitting there in that double bed, watching Bravo’s “Hollywood Treasures” (which by the way, we are now really into – Storage Wars is still better but this show’s pretty cool too!) with my buddy next to me, I was the happiest I’ve been in a few weeks. It was just so nice to be able to hang out with him without the interruption from phones, facebook and twitter messages, emails, blogging, gaming, all that stuff that we do when we’re home. It was really nice.
And I’m glad I enjoyed the evening, because I slept terribly all. night. long. Like I mentioned above there was nowhere for my arms to go (I really wish I could detach those things at night!), I felt like I was going to fall off the bed at any moment. Anytime someone in another room left the closing of the door woke me up. Anyone going to the washroom or taking a shower woke me up, cars on the street, you name it, it likely woke me up.
Despite a crummy night’s sleep I got up Saturday morning let J sleep a while longer while I went out and got us breakfast from Tim Hortons (smoothie & a muffin for me, cafe mocha & a muffin for him). I was really excited when I discovered it was beautiful day out! The night before the weather forecast had said rain all day Saturday which bummed me out a bit as I wanted to go strolling around downtown so to get up and see nothing but happy clouds and a blue sky made me giddy
That’s where I’m going to leave it for today. Tomorrow I’ll post about the rest of our adventures, which will include more photos than typing.
I hope everyone is having a great day so far! <3
Hi everyone! I hope you all had a lovely weekend. I know some of you did because I’ve already been reading about them! A whole lot of birthday’s were celebrated: Emily‘s dad, Em‘s bf’s and Jayme‘s sister and Jen went to the spa as part of her gift to her mom for her birthday. There seems to be a lot of August birthdays out there!
As any of my regular readers know, yesterday I didn’t post because I was at Z103′s Summer Rush Concert. A bunch of my Zumba girls and I went down to Dartmouth to see the show – but most importantly see Pitbull! And yes, this was my second Pitbull concert in the past 30 days. A very odd but true fact.
My carload of cool peeps arrived on the scene around 3pm, meet up with the rest of our group that was already there and started texting everyone else who was still on their way so they’d know where to find us
When the concert started first up was Alyssa Reid
She really didn’t impress me, she came out and for the first couple songs really acted like she was totally board. I thought the opening act was supposed to pump the crowd up? Well she certainly didn’t pump anyone in our group up. I like a few of her songs but really, try to at least act like you’re happy to be singing in your own concert for goodness sake!
The second act was Emily Osment, who I really didn’t know until I found out she played Hannah Montana’s bff on the show. Sadly, I voluntarily watch children’s shows so that piece of info at least told me what she looked like. While I didn’t know any of her songs, I really, really enjoyed her set. She was cute, peppy and has a good voice. Good job Lilly Truscott, good job.
Lilly Emily, was JRDN (Pronounced Jordan) who is a Nova Scotia native who grew up right in Halifax. I had certainly heard of JRDN before but wasn’t sure of any of his songs, but ended up knowing most of the songs he played. This was another surprise and was actually one of my fav acts of the day!
Summer Rush was clearly keeping things mostly Canadian with this tour as the next act was Mia Martina a singer from New Brunswick. I only knew who she was because one of my friends told me a couple of the songs she sings. She was a good performer but I really couldn’t concentrate on her, I was too busy watching her two dancers that showed up wearing the outfit was had planned to wear yesterday
Danny Fernandes and his dancers were up next, and they were really fun to watch as they had lots of awesome choreography that I liked. My only question was regarding Danny’s outfit. He was wearing coveralls that had suspenders on them…why would you need suspenders on coveralls? My only explanation is if you were to wear them as pants and left the top part hanging so you’d need suspenders to keep them up? Chances are they were only there for interest’s sake and have no purpose at all, but I really couldn’t help but wonder about them.
Our next act came all the way from the west coast (British Columbia) – These Kids Wear Crowns. This is the act that we all were wandering around saying, “Who are these guys??” But when they got on stage we found out they are the group that recently covered Whitney’s “I Wanna Dance With Somebody” and had a few other songs that we recognized too. The most amazing thing for me was the moves that the lead singer was able to execute on stage while wearing flip-flops. I seriously would have fallen off the stage, or at least on my face if I attempted doing what he did.
Then it was time for another Nova Scotia act with Classifed.
Now when I say this please know that I really like hip hop/rap music. Some of my all time fav tunes are rap and hip hop but man, Classifed ruined my hearing. They were SO crazy loud that I actually still have a faint ringing in my ears nearly 24 hours later. I guess when they tell you to take ear plugs to concerts they actually mean it
By the time Classifed was finished it was getting dark so my photo clarity went down the tubes. At any rate, next up was the act that I think 1/2 of the crowd came to see – Marianas Trench. I like quite a few of their songs so was looking forward to seeing them as well.
Before they sang “Beside You” they picked two girls out of the audience and challenged them to try to drink 2 liters of warm milk before the song was over. Whomever finished their milk first would win Josh Ramsay’s tie. They gave the girls their milk and a garbage can and Josh told them to stay close to the garbage can incase, “What I think might happen, happens.” The girls started chugging the milk and seemed to be doing pretty good for the first half of the song. Then they started slowing down. They started putting their hands on their chest, and then….they puked. On stage. In front of 8000 people. How mortifying. So neither one of them ended up winning the tie. Hopefully the guys gave them something for trying!
Let me tell you something though, if you’ve never seen Marianas Trench live before, man alive can that Joel scream. Like really scream, and for a long period of time. He must destroy his vocal chords with every concert they play! Yikes. I hope he drinks a lot of tea afterwards to settle that throat.
Then…the time came that we had been waiting about 8 hours for – Mr 305 – Mr Worldwide -Pitbull!
We were pretty crammed together but my girls did their best to do Zumba during a bunch of the songs, it was pretty frigging cool. I’ve got videos but I don’t feel comfortable posting them publicly online for everyone to see so you’ll just have to take my word for it.
The concert wrapped up around 11:30 and we actually didn’t have much difficulty getting back to the car and home to the valley. I suppose since there were only 8000 people there it was quite a bit smaller than most concerts. We were SO happy that one of my friends that I was travelling with had brought food with her because we were starving (we ate before we went in at 2pm and I don’t think any of the people I travelled with ate anything the whole time we were at the concert) so we spent the one hour drive back to the valley talking and eating granola bars, nibs and crispy minis.
I got home around 1:15am and pretty much crashed in my bed and was dead to the world until later this morning.
Today has been pretty low-key. J had to work and I didn’t feel like doing much so I worked on a project on the computer, did some laundry and that, is pretty much it. Now I’m off to have a bath and hang with the fella until bedtime.
It occurred to me that while I did write a post about my first time teaching Aqua Zumba, I had never really written a post about Aqua Zumba itself and what it was about and what to expect from a class.
At first glance you might assume that we just take all of our regular Zumba routines and do them in the water and call it Aqua Zumba. That simply isn’t the case. While there will sometimes be a routine that only needs a few tweaks to be made into an Aqua Zumba routine, those are very few and far between. Why? Because working in the water is a totally different beast than working on land. Many moves we do on the land simply don’t translate into that water (like the samba basic), and many of our routines that we do in regular Zumba are much too fast to be able to execute in the water. In Aqua Zumba, we use Zumba music, and our Zumba formula but use many traditional aqua fitness moves that have been “spiced up” with some Zumba flavour. Add in a few special Aqua Zumba moves and you’ve got yourself an Aqua Zumba class!
What’s the big deal? Why would I want to work out in the water??
Well one of the obvious ones is in the summer months when it’s hot outside it’s awesome to be able to do your workout in a pool where you keep cooler than on land because the water continuously wicks the sweat away from your body keeping your body temperature lower. In the water (when working in chest deep water) your working heart rate stays lower and recovers faster than on land, you have increased lung capacity, the water helps reduce swelling in the body as well as many, many other benefits. It is especially wonderful for people with arthritis or other inflammatory diseases as it does reduce swelling in submerged body parts, and is generally much easier on the joints than exercise on land.
WHen working in the water you get to take advantage of its multi directional resistance. On land when you do a bicep curl you work the muscle on the way up, but on the way down the muscle relaxes. In the water you work the biceps on the way up, and the triceps on the way down. It’s more bang for your buck – twice the work in half the time! Also, the resistance of the water is approximately 12x that of air so simply executing the exercise will require more energy and burn more calories than it would on land. All of these apply to any water workout – not just Aqua Zumba so even if you think this class isn’t for you, another water workout may still be right up your alley (deep water running for the runners, aqua k-box, there is even a new type of aqua spinning class out there!).
Are there some people who shouldn’t take Aqua Zumba?
As with any type of fitness class, there are those who are a higher risk and need to be more careful about what activities they partake in. In regards to Aqua Zumba, those with low blood pressure may find overdoing it in this or any other type of class can leave them light-headed, dizzy or nauseous. Just because you have low blood pressure doesn’t mean you can’t participate, it just means you should notify your instructor prior to class, and pay attention to any modifications they give you for your own safety. Also, those with cardiovascular problems, musculoskeletal disorders or hypertension should also consult their physician prior to starting any fitness program.
How does it compare to other water workouts?
I came into Aqua Zumba as a certified Aqua Fitness Instructor who had been already teaching water classes for a few years. Many people have the misconception that aqua fitness is an easy or “relaxing” type of class, certainly it can be, but I was used to teaching a fairly difficult type of aqua class. The participants I see each week were used to being given a real workout, and really want to be “killed.” Therefore, they are used to classes where they are pushed to muscle fatigue on different body parts throughout the entire class, have their aerobic and anaerobic capacities challenged and leave feeling like they’ve had a really good workout. Aqua Zumba, while it is definitely a workout, and it is loads of fun, simply isn’t as much of a workout as my participants are used to. I’ve “Suzi-ed” it up to make it a bit more challenging for them but by doing so my class has lost some of the “spice” normally associated with Zumba classes.
I really think that had I started out with a group of participants new to aqua fitness, or a group that wasn’t so used to being given really challenging workouts they would enjoy it more than they do. There are those that really seem to enjoy it, but the program has not been as popular at my location as expected I think because of that.
Again, personally I really enjoy the class, it is lots of fun, some of the moves are very challenging and you certainly get a workout but if you are looking to seriously get your booty kicked in the water this may not be the workout for you. If , on the other hand, you are just looking for a fun way to get some exercise, keep cool in the summer and enjoy a different form of Zumba you will probably love this class.
One last note…
I’ve preached this before and I’ll keep preaching it because I think it is so important for participants to know. In order to become a Zumba instructor you do no have have to be a fitness instructor, dance instructor or any other type of fitness professional. You go, take the workshop and leave with your license. The only prerequisite to becoming an Aqua Zumba instructor is that you are already a regular Zumba instructor. While I know there are lots of awesome Zumba and Aqua Zumba instructors out there who don’t have a group fitness or aqua fitness certification (and of course a few that do have the certifications and are still not so great), I personally think it is really important that you know what type of background your instructor has, what are their credentials (if any) and how experienced are they? Remember, while you always have the option to opt out of any move presented to you during a fitness class, generally we expect the instructor to only be presenting safe material in class to begin with. But are they? Do you know what moves are safe and which are not? Does your instructor? Please, take the time to find out a little bit about your instructor, if they are a professional they will be happy to tell you about themselves. Remember we all have to start somewhere so just because they are new doesn’t mean they are unsafe, but if they aren’t willing to share their background with you at all (new instructor or not), maybe they aren’t the right instructor for you…
Before I go…
Here’s a link to a video Zumba has released that will give you a small taste of what an Aqua Zumba class actually looks like!
Have you ever tried Aqua Zumba? If you did what did you think? If not, is it something you might be interested in?