Lifting Weights and Mid-day Crashes

The Artist and I hit the weights together yesterday.  He is naturally really muscular and strong, and can lift quite a bit, and in order to get a good workout, he has to lift pretty heavy.  Me on the other hand, I consider myself reasonably strong, and enjoy a challenge.  I love it when I can increase the weight on something.  But I do have the muscle definition the Artist has.  So we are lifting together, and nearing the end.  We are sweaty, exhausted, tired, and struggling to get a fresh breathe of air in the sticky, hot weight room.  The air in there is so heavy, its gross.  And earlier, I had bicycled to the Athletic Complex, it is a good distance with large hills, to attend day 2 of a self-defence course I am taking.  Day 2 was a little bit of “lecture”, but mostly learning moves and practicing them, and practicing them with the instructors holding pillowy cushions while you punch.  I have done kickboxing before, group fitness, drop in style, punching and kicking the air to music.  This class was 3 hours but it was a slow pace as we were learning technique, but actually punching hard and having your punch have contact with something is down right exhausting.  I was dozing on the Artist’s shoulder before we went to the gym.  I can’t believe I even made it there let alone lifted weights.

So we are nearing the end of our workout, doing biceps.  I am quite sweaty, but the Artist is clearly sweating and is very uncomfortable.  I am deliriously exhausted and tired, and I get the giggles.  And I am a giggly person even when I am not tired.

Artist: (As he finishes a set) Do we still have triceps after this?

Me: Yep.

Artist: F@#k.

Me: (laughing) Next time we should bring a water bottle with some gatorade in it to drink while working out.

Artist: Next time, lets bring the camping chairs, so we can sit down.

Me: (laughing)

Artist: And a beer.  And a hotdog.

Me: (laughing embarrassingly hard)

Artist: (as he finishes another set) And a puke bucket.

Me: (laughing so hard there are tears)

Artist: (gasping for air) And an oxygen mask.

Me: (laughter is not uncontrollable)

We finish up and head home.  And in good timing because my muscles had had enough.  Anything further and fainting would have been a possibility haha!  The Artist makes a delicious protein shake, and we always find ourselves coming back to life with every gulp.

A bit later, I made the Artist a big sandwich.  Ham, lettuce, tomato, banana peppers, black pepper, mayo, mustard, and “sub sauce” on a ciabatta.  There is no sub sauce here in Subways.  Crazy, right?  I don’t order it, but the Artist loves it, and it is like the most popular sauce.  So he tries to make it at home, or buys an oil/vinegar/herbs salad dressing.   He loved it.  He said it as better then Subway, his mouth was tingling for another one.  Heck yes.  I make good, hearty sandwiches.  Probably because I love sandwiches myself.  But, the key here is that my sandwiches are hot.  I guess I should say I love hot sandwiches.  And I don’t like deli meat, I like regular meat that I cooked ahead of time.  And I don’t like a normal loaf of bread, unless it is grilled cheese, I like french bread, ciabatta, baguette, buns, and it can be whole wheat, grainy, white, anything.  I like “fancy” sandwiches, most importantly, hot ones.  Or sometimes grilled like a panini.  Mmmmm.  If there wasn’t leftovers in the fridge I would be grilling one right now.

I don’t have any photos for this post, because I don’t bring a camera to the gym, and believe me, you wouldn’t want to see photos of that anyways, haha.  So use your imaginations.

Today shall bring: a community BBQ down the street, some baking maybe? suggestions?, and resting to recharge the batteries for next week.  Yesterday was crazy, and I was so tired I was dozing on the couch by 6pm.  I attributed it to the days events causing physical exhaustion.  But today, I crashed in the late afternoon and have felt very lethargic.  Like I have brain fog, and feel like a zombie.  But for no particular reason.  I got plenty of sleep, it felt good to sleep in this morning, I had enough to eat and it was good, healthy foods, so I don’t know.  Maybe I am fighting a cold, or coming down with something?  Maybe I didn’t get enough water?  Maybe I have low vitamin B12?  But of course, the first thing that comes to mind is that my thyroid medication isn’t doing it’s job.  If you read a previous post of mine: https://emilyandherartist.wordpress.com/2013/09/06/under-active-thyroid/ you will see why I worry.  I just started a higher dosage of medication, so I worry when I get that mid-day crash of intense fatigue.  However, trying to stay positive, these crashes have been happening less and less often.  Even if my crazy day yesterday wasn’t caused by physical exertion, but by my thyroid, 2 days out of the week is a lots better then 7.  And at least I wake up refreshed instead of exhausted.  Hopefully the next while will be better, and the mid-day crashes get even less frequent.  I would love to go to the doctor in December and have nice looking blood test results 🙂  Cross your fingers and think positive thoughts for me!

Nice thing I have done for the Artist: Make him a glorious-better-then-Subway sandwich, tell him how much I love his crazy long hair and beard, and how much it suits his personality.

Nice thing the Artist has done for me: Make me a protein shake when I am too weak to do so myself even though he is just as tired, helped me with dinner telling me it is always more fun when we cook together (awww!), and then served me.

Happiness is contagious.

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And Update of Us with Food, Love, and Life

Going through recent photos on the camera, I didn’t know what to focus on for this post.  So I am writing to give an update on what we are doing, cooking, and getting into.

Firstly- I love hot sandwiches.  With some nice bread versus your regular loaf, and with real meat versus processed deli style meat.  I could eat them for every meal.  We recently had pulled pork sandwiches, and today I had a whole grain sub bun with roasted chicken, provolone, spinach, onions, green peppers and a sprinkle of black pepper.  All toasted and delicious.  Which reminded me of the stellar sandwiches I whipped up the other for the Artist and I.  We had some chicken breast and buns to use up, to I sliced the chicken and created these, of which the Artist made several “mmm” sounds and closing his eyes in gesture of how amazing they were.  I could have eaten 2.  I sliced the baked chicken breast and threw it in a pan with some pesto (super easy, just basil, olive oil, parmesan, garlic, and I think some super finely chopped walnuts, and salt and pepper), and some chopped onions.  While that was warming, I cut up some red pepper slices and grilled them on our stove top grill.  When the peppers got a bit of char on them, I set them aside, and placed ciabatta buns on the grill, with some low fat mozzarella on them.  I know, I know- white buns are not healthy.  But this is just such a good sandwich I couldn’t resist, and I eat bread on a very rare basis so eating this bun once in a awhile is a super delicious treat.  Then I topped the ciabattas with the pesto/chicken/onion mixture, and loaded it on, using a fork to squish as much as I could on there, added the grilled red pepper slices, and put the top of the bun on.  And voila- best sandwich ever.

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Seriously.  Best. Sandwich. Ever.

Secondly- I love strawberry-kiwi flavoured things, so I thought using strawberries and kiwis to make some DIY popsicles was genius.  Haha, wrong.  It is not the same.  At all.  There are millions of seeds first of all, which is the worst part.  And the flavour is so tangy and gross, so I tried sweetening it with honeydew melon.  Did not work.  And the whole idea behind my popsicles is that it is 100% made with fruit, (not including my protein popsicles, those have yogurt and protein powder too) so I didn’t want to add sugar or anything.  So, I had already made them and didn’t want it to go to waste so I froze and am just eating them anyways.

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Thirdly- I made some sweets the other day.  S’mores in a bar form (mainly because I only had graham cracker crumbs and not the actual cracker) and peanut butter chocolate chip cookies.  The s’mores bars are just graham crumbs and a bit of melted butter for the bottom, baked for a few minutes, them add chocolate and marshmellows to the top and bake until the marshmellows get golden.  Cool, refrigerate, cut and serve.  Exactly as a “real” s’mores, but with a makeshift graham crust.  They were yummy.  The cookies were also delicious, and I made these also because the Artist doesn’t really like s’mores or toasted marshmellows.  However, when camping for real, he is a pro at making them over the fire.  All the treats and none of the work!  So the cookies.  It is 1 cup of peanut butter, 1/2 cup of white sugar, and 1 egg.  That’s it.  So they are a bit healthy because there isn’t added fats from oils or added carbs from flour etc. it is just the sugar that is the only unhealthy ingredient.  And I used all natural organic PB, where there is only 1 ingredient listed on the label: peanuts.  Not even any salt.  I also added some chucks of unsalted peanuts, and some very dark chocolate chips.  And I mean very dark.  When I say dark chocolate, assume a minimum of 60% cocoa.  Last time was 90%, and I usually aim for 70%.  That way there is very little sugar, and it has some fibre and antioxidants, and of course tastes amazing.  So they weren’t “healthy” cookies, but “healthier” then normal, and they were quite exquisite.  The Artist loved them.

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And finally, fourthly- I had been wanted to watch the mini-series The Tommyknockers based on the Stephen King novel for awhile now, so the Artist and I committed our Friday afternoon to watching it, because it is pretty long.  Friday was a lazy day.  It was overcast and raining all day.  So we enjoyed some time lounging together and catching up.  Then I see this:

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And take a second look.  Yep.  That’s the Artist’s coffee mug from this morning.  I don’t drink coffee so it has to be his.  Obviously, the best place for is on the floor near the front door where we keep our shoes.  Come on.  Hahaha!  What a character.  I am guessing that when he was standing near there, had a sudden compulsion to move a painting, make a mark, take a photo of a shadow or shape, or something along those lines and set his mug there for a second, forgot about it, and then we probably went on a hunt to locate it at some point, as we do this often.  Sometimes I find it on the TV, in the bathroom, on the floor, on my dresser, on the window sill, or on the bookshelf.  Actually, the bookshelf is a common “dumping” spot for him.  Because it is clearly the best place for small cardboard paintings and an Xacto-knife.

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I think we are the best match, because this kind of thing doesn’t bother me.  In fact, I love it.  I love seeing these crazy things because they always put a smile on my face.  It is always so funny, and the Artist always has something hilarious to say about it or some insane story for accompaniment.  And when he is in that zone, that “arting” zone, I can sense it.  I can feel it, I can see it, and I love it.  Seeing him in his niche like that warms my heart every time.  He is oblivious to his surroundings and he is focused on the task at hand.  It is like the vibes he is giving off are so happy and positive, it just puts me in a good mood to see him like this for even just a minute or two.  It is so hard to describe, I am not doing it justice here.  What the Artist has, the talent, the wisdom, the passion, and the obsession, is not something that can be learned, taught, or acquired.  It just “is”.  It runs in his blood, and is a part of his bones.  It is who he is, and I wouldn’t change a thing ❤  It is something that has always been within him that he has become aware of and worked hard at unleashing it’s full potential.  And others who have this talent, this gift, gravitate to him, because they too, can see it and feel it, and are in the process of unearthing their own.

The other day he was in one of these zones really intensely, and I captured a photo.  To most people, it won’t look like anything too special, but to me, it is a moment of such genius and passion in the air.

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He stands like this, or sometimes sits, and just looks.  Looks and thinks.  Thinks and looks.  He spends a lot of time doing this, sort of like “charging his battery”.  And then all of a sudden a ton of paintings will explode out of him, often of which have little or nothing to do with what he was thinking or looking at.  He is very much an intuitive artist, making marks and gestures with what feels good viscerally, and what he just thinks would look good, versus having a plan.

I try my best to support this in him, and help him to bring it out.  If I can take some of the weight off his plate so he can have time to paint, I will.  And when the time comes and I need some help with my plate of things, and it comes often, he helps me too.

He has said to me in various conversations, things along the lines of:

“I have never been able to be myself so much and so often until I met you.”

“You allow me to be my insane, crazy self and love me for who I am.  And look how far it has taken me.”

“I am so glad I found you, you are the best thing that has ever happened to me.”

I feel flattered every time.  Yet, I feel the exact same way about him.  Even the little things like how everyone in high school listened to country radio stations, and I always had Rock95 on blasting tunes from the The Rolling Stones, or Elton John, and I sort of hid and didn’t talk about it.  Any SCI classmates reading, I do not like country 😉  Or when I would laugh at the most hilarious facial expression that lasted for 2 seconds in a movie, but no one else saw it or thought it was funny, and I was in tears from laughing so hard.  The littlest things can now explode out of me, and the Artist encourages it.  Not only encourages, but spits back equally crazy things in my direction.

Happiness is contagious.