Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Step By Step

I sure hope that light ahead is the end of the tunnel.

With this week comes the climax of a project I've been working on for the last three months. I know better than to believe next week will be dramatically different. In fact, I'm expecting it to be just as frenzied as a few of those inevitable roll-out bugs need to get urgently squashed.

But I am looking forward to some sense of normalcy to return to my work pace, when an attempt at a restoration of balance can be made to my life.

I can tell I'm spending too much time at work when JB starts expressing resentment. We both know it doesn't make sense. As a flight attendant his work takes him away for days, sometimes weeks at a time. During those times it's never occurred to me to question what that means to our relationship, or if he's going out of his way to avoid spending time with me.

In some ways it seems self-centered. How many times do I have to say, "This has nothing to do with you, this is my job"? But I know JB well enough by now. His life revolves around taking care of people. Even his job reflects this. If one of the pleasures of his day is preparing a nice meal only to eat alone again in front of the TV, it's going to take its toll after a while.

But there's always a plastic-wrapped plate waiting in the refrigerator for me.

Since my health kick this past Spring I've been wearing a pedometer. As an engineer, I like working with data. As a geek, I like getting it wirelessly. So of course my pedometer periodically uploads my activity to the Internet. It's tiny enough to easily wear daily, and it's expensive enough to constantly worry about losing or laundering. A few weeks ago I thought for sure I'd lost it. I couldn't find it anywhere.

I was relieved a few days later when my pedometer emailed me to let me know it hadn't detected any movement from me. It was concerned I was dead and about to notify my next of kin. The fact it was updating to the Internet told me it was somewhere in my house and within range of its wireless charging base. Sure enough, I found it attached to a pair of slacks I'd put on one morning then decided to change out of because they're getting too tight.

And is it any wonder why my pants are getting tighter? Look at my activity on a typical day from last week:

1,412 steps taken.

What are we looking at? You're seeing me get up in the morning, getting ready for work, walking to my car, then walking from the parking lot to my desk. You're seeing me take a late afternoon bathroom break with a stop at the vending machine on the way back to my desk. Then you're seeing me walk to my car, back into my house and getting ready for bed.

Compare this with one of my better days from a few months ago:

11,208 steps taken.

Here you're seeing me sleeping (yes, you're supposed to wear the device to bed if you wish to monitor your sleep) with a couple trips to the bathroom. Getting up and going for a morning run. Going to work and taking several breaks throughout the day. Coming home and going for a nice walk after dinner.

This is what I'm looking forward to getting back to in the weeks to come.

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