COVID19 life

Currently: Some Updates

March 10, 2021

I slept 7.5 glorious hours last night. Without interruption or fear of interruption. Honestly, it was amazing.


Reading: The Glass Hotel (Emily St. John Mandel) and A World Without Email (Cal Newport). I finally finished Medical Apartheid (Harriett Washington; took me over a MONTH of consistent AM reading sessions).

Looking forward to: SEEING MY SISTER & MY NIECE – AHHHHH! Also, leaving the immediate area (and my usual responsibilities!) for 3.5 days. What an incredible novelty!

Generally I am finding myself looking forward to “the future” in a vague sense more than I have in the past ~12 months. It feels really good.

Considering: Trying a new planner. Heh. Someone very thoughtful sent me their own #plannerfail, a Day Designer — which I’ve always wanted to try! I’m considering moving in for a month trial but I can’t decide it if worth transferring alllll of the upcoming dates & tasks carefully recorded in my Wonderland222. Planner problems . . .

Already thinking about: How I can handle my next call week better than my last one. Notably, I have had ups and downs in this arena. Things that help are: minimizing all other commitments (I had many important work meetings last week, some of them rather stressful, plus some kid-related stuff came up), mentally preparing in advance (as silly as that sounds – I think I will try to read an encouraging book before the next week). Not sure what else.

Moving: I am finding a relative groove with my workouts, running 3-4 days and doing strength 2-3 days. I’m sort of sad I can’t mileage higher mileage, but in order to do that I’d have to a) quit some other commitment or b) strength train even less, and I don’t think that’s wise. Trying to decide if I will do the 80 Day Obsession again this summer vs continue with the current balance. Also, I still find LIIFT4 effective and hard (this is what I use for my strength workouts) but I am getting kind of bored of it, so am open to other suggestions.

Genevieve News: She is moving up a classroom to the 3-6 set! A spot opened up and as she is now fully potty trained (yay) and one of the oldest in her class, her teachers wanted to send her. This is bittersweet because she is pretty happy where she is and the toddler teachers have been wonderful.

BUT, this means an earlier and easier drop-off. And (maybe?) less of a nap. And she is now eligible to take swim lessons, which is an add-on but soooo worth it as I need to work on getting her water-safe. She starts in her new classroom next week.

Isn’t it pretty!?

Today is a patient day and then I will set my AWAY MESSAGE and disappear until Monday. Very excited!


  • Reply Lee March 10, 2021 at 10:22 am

    Day Designer is what I’m using this year! Can’t wait to hear what you think. 🙂

  • Reply Amanda G March 10, 2021 at 10:43 am

    Have a wonderful time with your sister and niece! I have twin nieces arriving next month (and hopefully not sooner) and I’m not sure when I’ll get to meet them, but its such a wonderful, special thing to be an Aunt!!

  • Reply Grateful Kae March 10, 2021 at 11:15 am

    I made up my own combo of Morning Meltdown and LIIFT4 and have been working through that while also sprinkling in some running recently and some lifting in the gym. I’ve been liking the variety. Have you ever tried Morning Meltdown? Some of the workouts are cardio and some are more strength based- there are lots of different workouts but they all follow the same basic repeating pattern each week, so it would be easy to pick out just the strength workouts once you’re familiar with the different days. (Downbeat strength= lower body, Upbeat strength= upper, Meltcon is a full body weights circuit, Core Inferno= core, the rest are mostly cardio based or stretching). I have been rotating through LIIFT4 for a while now, too, and still like it overall but I am DONE with the triple bears!!!! 😆😆

  • Reply RKK March 10, 2021 at 11:57 am

    Felt the same about LIIFT 4 – liked it and it was effective but grew bored. I recently did MBF just to get back into it (similar to 21 Day Fix), but now I’ve moved onto The Prep, which I love, and which I think is as challenging as LIIFT. As Kae said above, it would be easy to just pick out the strength based workouts if you wanted to.

  • Reply Gretchen J March 10, 2021 at 12:20 pm

    I use and love Get Mom Strong by Ashley Nowe. Focuses on strength training while properly engaging core and pelvic floor (especially good for moms but all are welcome to her workouts). Many runners have given her feedback that her workouts have really helped their endurance. But I understand if you wish to stay in the Beach Body realm, since you already have that subscription.

    Enjoy your time with your sister and niece!

  • Reply Omdg March 10, 2021 at 12:32 pm

    Also am getting tired of LIIFT4. I find that my schedule doesn’t really allow for daily workouts, and 3-4 days per week is all I can fit in much of the time, but also I feel so much better when I can do something every day. Maybe I’ll try morning meltdown as a reader suggested? Or the prep? Also thought about doing 21 rounds. Maybe I should just ride my bike more. 🙂

  • Reply RH March 10, 2021 at 2:52 pm

    I have been using various Beachbody programs for the past few years and also was feeling in a rut. So I recently tried the Peloton app–I don’t have the bike, just using the strength training–and am really enjoying it. You can choose 10 min, 15 min, 20 min etc workouts for various parts of the body, with weights or without and there is new content daily. It’s been perfect to do after I run, depending on how much time I have.

    Some of the coaches are 1) annoying but I’m slowly figuring out who to avoid and 2) swear quite a bit which, I mean whatever, but sometimes I do the workouts in the living room with kid around so not ideal.

  • Reply Jen March 10, 2021 at 4:24 pm

    I just started #MBF as a way to change things up on Beach Body. I hired a coach for triathlon training (here’s hoping my June race happens) but like you i really see the value in strength training so he works in a few 30 minute strength sessions into my plan – which is especially good right now since pools in Toronto have been closed since November. It’s good to switch it up. I also really enjoyed Autumn’s workouts but was getting tired of them. So far, I am enjoying! I have tried Liift but i am really trying to stay with 30 mins or less since I am also working in running and biking.

    I did try 6 weeks of the work last summer which was good but i found it wasn’t my style of workout. He works you until failure, so I felt like i couldn’t always get through the sets and that was purposeful. I don’t find that motivating, but maybe you do.

    • Reply Sarah Hart-Unger March 10, 2021 at 4:41 pm

      I think that working past failure sounds like … torture. Honestly LIIFT4 gets me close enough to failure most days for my taste!

  • Reply Lisa of Lisa’s Yarns March 10, 2021 at 8:53 pm

    Sounds like you came off a really rough call. I hope the next one isn’t quite as brutal! But yay for having a trip to visit your sister to look forward to! I bet she is so pumped to have you there for a good chunk of time. I can’t imagine solo parenting during the last year. She is a major rock star!

    All I can think about is how glad I am that I got my first dose and get my 2nd on 3/31. I am so grateful that I never got Covid. I was so anxious since I’m doubly immune compromised between my TNF inhibitor and prednisone. Plus an autoimmune disorder also put me at higher risk of a bad outcome. I feel like there is a very bright light at the end of the tunnel and the worst is hopefully behind us!! I liked Emily Oster’s newsletter today. I think you are a subscriber too. It made me feel like this summer will be more normalish meaning I can see my siblings at my parents’ lake home.

  • Reply Simone March 11, 2021 at 4:46 am

    I think Genevieve will enjoy moving up a classroom – my 3.5 yo just started Kindergarten (which is kids from 3-6 years old here in Germany) and he is just flourishing because of being around older kids.
    Also – workout recommendation: have you heard of BodyFit by Amy? She’s on Youtube and offers tonnes of free workouts. I do one everyday – she’s got a bit of everything: strength training, cardio, HIIT…and also offers videos of various lengths – some as short as 10 minutes. Could be an option to add a short strength session onto your running days? I don’t know, just some thoughts.

    • Reply Sarah Hart-Unger March 11, 2021 at 12:07 pm

      3-6 is her class too (I think that’s a Montessori thing?). I’m actually pretty excited for her. A tiny bit nervous and sad she is leaving her toddler class behind but I do feel like she’s relatively mature for her age and will really love it.

  • Reply Liz March 11, 2021 at 6:25 am

    For strength, I use the Peloton app. I initially signed up in March 2020 (at the dawn of the pandemic) because they were offering a 90-day free trial and all gyms and/or fitness studios had closed. I was never into spinning and had tried out the app with the intention of using it for strength only. As someone mentioned earlier in the comments, the main appeal is that the content is updated daily so that you really never have to take the same workout twice and you can choose from workouts that range from 10 min to 45 min. Also, I like that they use real music in their workouts (Peloton paid for the rights to use the music) the instructors are great (albeit some are annoying; you just have to take a bunch of classes to find the instructors you vibe with). I ended up liking the app so much that I bought the bike in August and–having never been on a spin bike prior–LOVE IT.

  • Reply Caitlin March 11, 2021 at 11:36 am

    I really like the book Body By You by Mark Lauren. It’s all bodyweight workouts, and the plan is three 30 minutes (some are only 20 minutes) a week. It’s a little odd at first, or it seemed that way to me, but it’s pretty powerful. I think in another post you mentioned not only enjoying feeling strong but also the vanity of looking toned, and this program has done both for me, and results come pretty quickly.

  • Reply Amanda March 11, 2021 at 2:52 pm

    I second the commenters recommending Muscle Burns Fat (MBF) on BeachBody + BodyFit by Amy on YouTube. They released MBF at the beginning of the year and it has been so refreshing to have new workouts. Both instructors are great!

    • Reply Christa March 11, 2021 at 5:06 pm

      I will put in a vote for The Prep and The Work. Together they are 10 weeks and the trainer (Amoila Cesar) is dropping a new program this summer.

      I loved the pace and complex movements of the program. I also likes that, because of the pace, I rarely needed to change up weights to feel challenged.

      I did The Work four times and, like your experience with LIIFT4, just needed something new for now. I am onto Peloton until Amoila’s new program drops!

  • Reply Shelly March 13, 2021 at 2:03 pm

    If you like 80 day obsession, you should try her new one 9 week control freak. You can get a version of the bands and yoga ball from amazon for relatively cheap and much faster than BB. Also she has a new weights only version, but I really like the abs on the ball. The workouts are 30 minutes except for the cardio day which is even shorter and could be replaced by running. It’s got lots of variety (even more than 80DO) and definitely good cardio weights.

  • Reply The Evely Pack March 14, 2021 at 10:34 am

    i’m fascinated to hear how you like the day designer! i’ve not heard of it! is it a daily or a weekly? from the link i only saw a horizontal weekly lay out… how do you feel about that since you have been using the vertical weekly for so long? (i’d love to be a flexible person, but as a die hard vertical weekly girl, i just wouldn’t be able to handle a switch! haha!)

    i will also say, i got excited when you mentioned on the planners & wine podcast that you might be interested in exploring disc-bound… which i LOVE!!! I’ve got my own punch even! (levenger and it’s awesome!) i haven’t done an actual discbound full on planner/calender, but i have a ton of discbound notebooks for organizing various projects, lists, at times GTD style capturing, and collections of papers (such as documents from my son’s speech therapy sessions) they are just so flexible! way better than binders too, BECAUSE in addition to inserting, removing and moving pages and inserts around you can ALSO fold the cover around and it goes from double spread to single spread, which is easier to write on in your lap or any place you aren’t sitting at a desk… which you can’t do with a binder! so it’s much more portable and well, just amazing 🙂

    and the MANY options of covers that can be EASILY switched as often as you wish! both store-bought and also diy style! so much fun!!! 🙂 playing around with it would definitely feed that feeling of needing something fresh bc the possibilities are endless!! and so easy to adjust and makeover anytime!

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