The Sassy Pear

Finding my way through my forties

Very Best Self: Weeks 4 and 4.5 — August 2, 2019

Very Best Self: Weeks 4 and 4.5

Well, we did it. We’ve come to the end of our Very Best Self experiment/challenge – are you a new and improved person like I am?

woman stands on mountain over field under cloudy sky at sunrise
Photo by Victor Freitas on

HAHAHAHAHAHAHA!!!!!!!  (^^^Obviously not me.)

Okay, actually last week went really well. I figured out that if I get up and get in the shower first thing, then, while my hair is air drying, I have time to do a 5-20 minute workout. I got up early and worked out 4 days last week!! These are not intense workouts – they are low impact – but they are challenging enough that I felt a little soreness in my muscles and I didn’t get sweaty so I didn’t feel like taking a shower first was a waste of time.  It was a nice feeling to know that I did at least some form of exercise in the morning, and one morning I even had time to fit in a short meditation.

This week however, has been a different story. I have been so tired all week and I’ve had to force myself to wake up at the latest possible minute. My husband and I had a fun night out last Saturday night and stayed up way too late, then I had trouble sleeping Sunday – Tuesday nights and it has been a sleepy struggle to stay awake and be productive during the day ever since. So this week, I’ve gotten up early exactly zero times.

So what did I learn from this experiment? A) I can be a person who gets up early only if I get enough sleep the night before, and B) that it takes me several days to recover from a late night out. This may seem like a no-brainer, but having an early morning habit is the direct result of a solid evening routine, and I’m thinking I may need to work on that part first because I don’t have a great evening routine. I often get to bed later than I’d like so some focused attention on that will help with my goal of becoming an early riser.

How did your experiments go? You guys were making some great progress last time I checked! Did you learn anything about yourselves that surprised you or that will be helpful going forward? Any ideas for another experiment or challenge? I thought this was fun and interesting – I’d like to do it again. 🙂


Challenge of the Day – Day 22 FINALLY! — December 31, 2009

Challenge of the Day – Day 22 FINALLY!

Next time I say, “hey wouldn’t it be fun to do a challenge for the next 3 weeks!!” somebody please shoot me.  Coming up with 22 challenges (okay more like 17) was a…challenge.  But here we are at the last day, and my challenge for myself is an important, albeit difficult, one:


And by junk, I mean M&Ms, chocolate covered macadamia nuts, cream cheese mints, white chocolate pretzels, regular chocolate pretzles, mini Snickers, mini Milky Ways, mini Twix…good gravy it’s no wonder I gained 6 pounds!! But I am getting rid of all of that today, and stocking up on healthier fare. I’ve been perusing Roni’s Green Lite Bites for inspiration and am excited about trying some of her recipes (yeah, I know I’m way late to the party, but better late than never!).  So if you have any leftover Christmas goodies, get rid of them today. Don’t think about it, just do it!

Happy New Year’s Eve!  🙂

Challenge of the Day – Day 21 — December 30, 2009

Challenge of the Day – Day 21

So my last post (not the Day 20 challenge, the other one) was a little harsh. I harshed on myself (1990 called, they want their catch phrase back) and now that I’ve had a little time to think about it, I actually HAVE learned a few things in these past 365 days, and because I loves me some bullet points, I shall put all my thoughts into bullet-point order:

• I eat less. It’s true – I have learned to be satisfied with less food. I rarely eat to the point of being overstuffed anymore (notice I didn’t say “never”).

• I can recognize when I am feeling snacky and when I am truly hungry. A lot of times I can stop myself when I am being snacky and I can analyze what is really going on (usually it has to do with being bored or wanting to postpone some lovely activity like laundry or mopping).

• I know the value of regular exercise, and it has little to do with losing weight. For me, exercise calms my mind, gives me energy, and boosts my self esteem. When I don’t exercise regularly, my mood darkens and I feel zapped (as evidenced by my last post). Sometimes I forget just much it affects me and I slack off, but I’m working on reminding myself of how much my mind and body really does (really do? what is the correct grammar here?) need it.

• I have discovered that what I really love most about the diet pills is more for what it does for my head than what it does for my body. It quiets the “crazy food thoughts”. I don’t think about food ALL. THE. TIME. when I’m on the pills, but I don’t think that taking the pills forever would be a very smart thing either, so I have to figure out a way to quiet those thoughts without chemical stimulation.

I’m sure I’ve learned more, but it’s that last bullet point that is going to be the focus of my challenge for today. Every hour until 4pm today, I am going to take one minute and meditate (after 4pm, I’ll be at home and I don’t know if I’ll be able to get to a quiet spot!). I am going to close my eyes and pray that no one walks into my office to disturb my 60 seconds of stillness. I have been feeling like a lot of thoughts are tumbling around in my brain like clothes in a dryer, and so I need to do something to calm them down. I hope this works – I’ll let you know.

Challenge of the Day – Day 20 — December 29, 2009

Challenge of the Day – Day 20

Today’s challenge is simple:  30 minutes of cardio.  I plan on doing 30 minutes on the elliptical this afternoon when I get home from work.  It’s been a lot easier to talk myself into working out since my new work out buddy arrived on Dec 24th:

Philips GoGear 16 GB Aria MP3 Video Player with 2-Inch Color Screen

I have decided that it’s a lot more fun to work out when I have the music thumping inside my head, as opposed to…say, the ancient boombox in the garage.

Challenge of the Day – Days 15,16,17,18, and 19 — December 28, 2009

Challenge of the Day – Days 15,16,17,18, and 19

Hello All! 

I hope you all had a wonderful long Holiday weekend, and you got to spend time with family and friends. I did, in fact, I am still on my long weekend. I took today off to just veg and chill and that’s exactly what I’m doing. That’s also exactly what I’ve been doing for the last 3 days. We are somewhat snowed in (by choice really) and that is fine by me. 

My challenges for the last few days have been to go easy on the Christmas goodies and I will be completely honest with you here: I failed. Big Time. Which brings me to today’s challenge: damage control. I have already done 35 minutes on the elliptical and I started my day with a good breakfast and a good lunch ( I had a teeny piece of chocolate pie for dessert, though. It was totally worth it!).  I’m going to try and NOT grab some kind of sweet every time I walk through the kitchen, and I am going to load up on the water.  I hope that I can taper off the sweets today and start fresh tomorrow.  Really out of the last five days, I’ve only wrecked two of them with massive amounts of sugar, so I haven’t done too awful, but if I keep going, it won’t be pretty. 

I am excited about a new thing I’m going to start on January 2nd. It’s a 30 day program where you work with a registered dietician. I’ll tell you all more about it when I get more details, but I think it will be a great way to start out the new year. 

Okay, that’s all I’ve got for now. I’ll try and post tomorrow when things get somewhat back to normal. Only two and half days to work this week and then I get a 3 and a half day weekend again!  Woohoo!!  🙂

Challenge of the Day – Day 14 — December 23, 2009

Challenge of the Day – Day 14

Tonight I am going to be baking.  Cream cheese mints (my daughter’s favorite), peanut butter balls (my husband’s favorite), haystacks (my son’s favorite), and no bake cookies (my youngest daughter’s favorite) are on the baking menu for this evening.

Lord help me.

My challenge today is to use a lot of restraint and not make myself sick “testing” the candies. I have plenty of other Quality Control Experts at my house, so there won’t be a need for me to eat 47 pounds of sugar tonight. I’ll have one of each candy and call it a day.  I’m making these treats for my family, not for me.

nom, nom, nom


Challenge of the Day – Day 13 — December 22, 2009

Challenge of the Day – Day 13

The Challenge of the Day is to think of another challenge. Seriously, I can’t think of anything else to add to the mix.  I know I should be focusing on exercising or eating better, but all I can think of is decreasing my stress.  I am feeling better today, but I still feel a lot of tension in my shoulders, so I know the mood could change in a blink. 

Okay, I just thought of a challenge:  whenever I feel like I’m about to blow my stack, I will spend 5 minutes doing some deep breathing exercises, and I will do this as many times today as I need (which might be a whole lot). I might even do this cause I’m all about the yoga these days. 

Breathe in, breathe out.     🙂

Challenge of the Day – Day 12 — December 21, 2009

Challenge of the Day – Day 12

Today’s challenge is going to be to NOT TO LOSE MY FREAKING MIND!!!  I got the Christmas “I’ve still got so much to do, but zero time to do it” Blues, and I don’t know how I’m going to get it all done. Actually, I do – I gave my husband half of my list of To Do’s and tonight I’m going to finish my half of the list. I WILL GET IT DONE IF IT KILLS ME!!! Oh, and did I mention the lovely cold that has invaded my sinuses? Yeah, that’s one Christmas gift I could do without, thankyouverymuch.

Okay, the REAL challenge for today is…calm my stress with good foods that will energize me instead of succumbing to the siren song of the junk/comfort food.  I need to be especially good to myself over the next few days and unfortunately sugar isn’t going to help me do that, so I’ve already got a veggie-heavy meal planned for tonight and I’m guzzling water as well. My new favorite snack is an idea that I got from Debby – half an apple with Laughing Cow cheese shmeared on it topped with a sprinkling of walnuts. SO YUMMY!!! 

What are your feel-good snacks? Got any challenges of your own for this week? 


Challenge of the Day – Day 10 — December 19, 2009

Challenge of the Day – Day 10

I’m going to recycle one of my challenges, only because I love it so much!  I’m going to do some more yoga today because this came in the mail a few days ago:


It’s a yoga pad that I won in a giveaway from the lovely MizFit and Lotuspad Yoga Mats!  It’s spongy and big and fun!  It was in my hands for approximately 3.4 seconds before my kids got hold of it and went berserk using it as a catwalk, a tight rope, and a slide (I freaked out when I saw the oldest one holding one end in the air, and the youngest one trying to slide down it!).  I finally wrangled it away from them long enough to do a little Warrior 1 and 2 pose, ignoring the rolling eyes of my husband who thinks I’m going to become some kind of pot-smoking hippie earth-mama (and really would that be such a bad thing if I did? Earth mama, not pot-smoking hippie.).  He was not on board with the whole yoga thing until I told him it would make more “bendy”, then he was all for it. Typical male. 😉

Anyway, I think I’m going to find a more challenging yoda dvd and try to make this at least a weekly thing because I really feel so good after I’ve done 45 minutes of stretching and breathing!  I highly recommend it to anyone needing a little “me” time. 

May we all have a wonderful, stress-free weekend! 


Challenge of the Day – Day 9 — December 18, 2009
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