If you want to add a bit of kick to your daily workout routine, invite kids to join you for it. Trust me. You may end up burning twice as many calories and going a bigger distance than you ever intended.
The Tar Heel cousins have been visiting since last weekend. So far, I've had at least one of them tagging along with me every day, while I put in some village miles.
(My new Champion sneakers are working out really well, by the way. They've been super-comfy, even more than I anticipated!)
Julia's not been as keen on being out in the cold weather quite as much during this stay. Avril (the younger of the two cousins, who's nine-years-old), hasn't been too discouraged by it and has bundled up and donned her sneakers to do the circuit with me every time I've gone out, regardless of the temperature.
There's been other stuff for them to do besides tag along with me while I put in my village mileage, although I've seriously loved their company.
On Christmas, Julia got her first gun. It's a Red Ryder, of course, like nearly all of us got for our first firearm. They've improved over the years, but still (thankfully) are easily recognized from a distance as our old familiar favorite from childhood.
I think I got mine when I was nine-years-old, and had to share it with my sister. Worked out fairly well once we got over fighting about who's turn it was to shoot it.
Usually, there are an abundance of cans here but the day the girls wanted to get in some target practice in the back yard, it figures there'd be only one can for them to use, so they had to make due with a single target, rather than a line of them.
To keep the wind from blowing it over, they filled it with water from one of the back yard pumps. Seems all the sand had turned to mud from recent rains and snow.
Julia was first up ...
They showed a decent amount of patience when having to traipse back and forth to check the can for hits after each took their turn.
Then it was Avril's turn.
Good job, girls. Proud of you! See? Learning defense isn't just for boys ...
Photo shoots in Vanderburgh County
It's been fun having them around this week. I was able to do photo shoots for leisure articles I've been wanting to do since last year.
Since I can't just go 'round including strangers in my articles without getting their permission, it makes it much easier to take friends along who will enjoy the outing and don't mind being featured in the photos I get.
The girls were great company for the shoots. They were friendly with folks we met who were visiting the same areas we were, polite to the people I had to talk to in the facilities we visited, and they didn't shy from the camera.
It was a weekday, and that added to that, the weather was declining from sunny with wind to cold and rainy and eventually snow. So, there weren't lots of folks out, but a few brave souls managed to make it out to enjoy the brisk breeze blowing across the Ohio.
Lots of cyclists, joggers and pet-walkers are die-hards, regardless of most weather conditions.
One of those was Gary, who was kind enough to stop for a quick chat about local cycling spots, as well as let me take his pic to include in this post and the Pack Rides! Guest Gallery. He's a friendly fellow and said he doesn't ride with a pack yet. He's from Washington, Indiana and so far he's not run into many other mountain bikers since moving to Evansville, but hopefully, that'll change soon.
So, if any of you local Hoosiers and Briarhoppers cross paths with Gary on the E-ville Riverwalk, maybe you could take a few minutes to get acquainted with him and invite him along for a ride.
The path he's shown on here is familiar to me, although I'd not been in this area for several years. The last time I visited this stretch was on Christmas Eve in 1998, for a bit of street-light rollerblading with one of my best friends, David Mason.
It was an awesome evening for skating -- cold and with snow falling, but no wind.
The area that's tiled along the riverwalk makes for a bumpy ride, but now there's a fantastically smooth blacktop path that links up with the plaza that should make for some awesome blading and since I've been feeling better and better by the week, hopefully it won't be long until I can try it out for myself.
Chic Buds ...
Most of the time I listen to music while I workout. I have a play-list on android called "Jump Tunes", with a large blend of my favorite upbeat music.
Since I first discovered and began using ear buds, I'd been having to purchase new a new set about every two months. It never failed that every pair I got developed tangles, which were a pain to get out each time I needed to use them, and then they'd end up with shorts in the wiring.
Very frustrating when you love to listen to something while you walk, jog, cycle, or whatever ...
Last spring, things changed when I discovered the most fantastic ear buds I've ever used. They're called Chic Buds and I LOVE them!
They don't tangle because the cord is flat and They don't hurt my ears because they've got changeable, reallyyyyyy soft and squishy covers on them. Added to that, they come in very cool color combinations.
In March I'll have been using them for a whole year and they've been improved with an added feature since I bought mine.
Now they're offering them with a built-in microphone. If you're phone rings while you're listening to your tunes, or a video, you don't have to make any bud-adjustments. Just answer your phone via the mic and keep moving.
By the way, they're Chic as in cool, not as in chick . So if you're a guy, don't get all bent thinking they don't offer styles for men and women. They've got you covered.
The first three featured below come equipped with the built-in microphone. The last set, like mine, doesn't have the mic. I'm not willing to part with mine as long as they're still working, but if they ever break down, I'll spend the extra couple of bucks to get a set with the built-in mic.
These things are super-affordable. So, if you invest in them, plan on getting your money's worth. I definitely have. In fact, by not having to buy a new set every six weeks, these things have actually saved me a sizeable chunk of money.
Since Christmas is over, it's too late to consider them as stocking stuffers, but they'd still make a great gift for Valentine's Day or a birthday, or for someone special that you know who would enjoy them, which is anyone that uses ear buds with their mobile.
I have a bluetooth device as well but for listening to music and videos, these work much better. I even use them at my desk, hooked up to my laptop while I'm working so I can listen to nature sounds to drown out distracting background noises, or to listen through while I watch a video.
Yup, I love 'em!
Thoughts to share before closing ...
We're halfway through the first month of 2014, and in all sincerity, I hope your year is starting off blessed. Most of us have things to contend with that we wish we didn't, yet I can't help but be thankful for the many blessings God is constantly giving me.
The older I get, the more I recognize that there are so many things to be grateful for. One of them is my improving health. I've been trying to ensure that each day I remember to put in some time for fitness. I hope you're doing the same. I also hope that you'll find the Pack Rides! blog to be an inspiration for you and that you'll consider to share some of your thoughts on fitness with us.
That's it for this one, gang.
Hope you've enjoyed the "catch up", and if you've got a fav place to work out that inspires you, please drop us a line and tell us about it, or even send us a pic and we'll mount it in the guest gallery.
God bless you, thank you for the read and please don't forget to thank a veteran at your next opportunity!
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