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I ran roomba in the kitchen and front hall, upstairs hall, T.'s room and the two upstairs bathrooms. I also did some cleaning in the kitchen. A. only had a half day, her last day of the regular school year. Both kids will start their summer programs after July 4th is over. We've got a little time between now and then, and we're starting to make some plans. We're very excited we're going to go see Despicable Me 3 on June 30.

A. had a play date at Nara. The sitter told the folks there she thought I had a pass. I don't think I have a pass. But the town thinks I have a pass. I'm super confused about this, but they got the right walkitout (there's another one in town with the same name) because they gave my address. I should probably call town hall and try to figure out what happened. Because I never received a pass and I honestly don't think I bought one this year. Altho I have bought in previous years (at least one, maybe two) where I never used it one single time. So, karma?

R. and I went out for sushi.

I was so tired after yesterday's walks that today I did the short walk with M. and later with R. and that was it. I'm optimistic that if I keep consolidating more walks on some days and use the days in between as rest days, I'll build up a bit more stamina.

ETA: I took a look at the 2015 entry summarizing a summer of walking. I had it in my mind that I had had some 7 mile days, but it looks like I never had 7 miles on the road days back then. Yesterday was over 25K steps, 13.13 miles total, 7 road miles (3 + 1 + 3). Getting to this point by the end of June is better than I've done in at least 9 years, possibly closer to 12. I feel bad that 7 miles on the flat wipes me out as bad as this did, but I'm older now. Here's hoping that by this time next year, I'll be looking back going, gee, 7 miles? I can do the 3 mile loop three times in a day, no problem. That's the point at which I started doing more serious hiking in Seattle (when I could loop Green Lake 3 times in a day without really feeling it, so I figured it was time to add hills).
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I walked with M for one mile. I walked 3 miles by myself (nice to have some new music to listen to, thanks to T.'s incessant demands to buy whatever he likes that he hears on the radio). And while A. had her swimming lesson, I swam between a quarter and a third of a mile. Normally, when I do laps after a long hiatus, my shoulders tell me it is time to stop. Today, my foot kept cramping up. Very annoying, and not at all normal. Presumably an artifact of the walking.
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Yesterday, I walked with M (one mile), by myself (3 miles) and with R. after dinner (3 miles). Lots of walking! I hadn't had a seven mile day in a while.

Today, I walked by myself (one mile), with M. (one mile) and with R. after he came home from work (3 miles). I have had five mile days recently, but not right after a seven mile day.
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Today, T. and I went in the van to the Bruce Freeman trail. We parked at the Byam school. We rode our bikes up to Chelmsford Center, where we had brunch at Brickhouse, which I _thought_ was a pizza place open for lunch and dinner, but is also open for breakfast starting at 7 a.m. So I had a lovely two egg breakfast (perfect over medium, not too soft and not too hard, toast was dry as requested and the potatoes were well within the good range) and T. had a half a belgium waffle with chocolate chips, butter and syrup. Tasty and super convenient to the bike trail. Of course, that was way too much food for a mere 5 mile bike ride but whatevs.

T. has gotten very reliable about saying "On your left" when passing pedestrians, altho I could wish he wasn't _quite_ so loud. But you know, better too loud than too quiet. We enjoyed the outing so much we're going to do it again tomorrow. His summer session is done and his sitter is out of town so we are having fun together.
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Today's play date was at our house, with T.'s riding partner. These are always very low key and enjoyable. I really like the boy's mom and we always have great conversations.

After that, we went to the horse, where the convo continued, with another mum in the mix as well. I got a walk around the mile block when we came home, then T. and I went to the Hudson Applebee's. After that, I did the 3 mile loop while R. got the kids into the tub.

The kids are having a ton of fun with the roller blades R. got them at Dick's Sporting Goods. He had to go a second time because A.'s pair was two right shoes.

Tomorrow, R. and I are switching cars so that I can take T. (whose summer program ended on Friday, and whose sitter is still out of town) on a bike ride on the Bruce Freeman trail. The van is already loaded up with bikes and ready to go, so I just have to extract the bikes when we get to the trail, and reload the van after. Fingers crossed.
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I started wearing my Watch around May 22. There are probably some formatting problems in this. I am having trouble figuring out how to export data from HealthKit, so I did it The Hard Way (I'll figure out a good way to do this because I'm not prepared to do it The Hard Way twice).

Date Steps Miles Minutes Calories
May 22 12747 6.7 miles 60 1004
23 10117 5.01 21 797
24 11474 5.52 22 853
25 15062 7.87 71 1232
26 16529 8.52 60 918
27 13276 6.88 65 768
28 15750 8.28 72 884
29 13881 7.21 66 738
30 13249 6.61 45 724
31 15389 6.85 32 816

June 1 11090 5.54 33 744
2 14376 6.53 24 695
3 15391 7.19 22 752
4 14482 6.8 19 700
5 16537 7.71 23 789
6 15281 7.04 28 749
7 13267 6.16 24 701
8 16465 7.57 41 785
9 14778 6.9 36 780
10 15775 7.46 33 771
11 17948 8.2 25 824
12 15563 7.29 29 801
13 14200 6.52 10 671
14 15066 7.06 31 757
15 8536 4.15 4 532
16 17002 7.91 40 873
17 18122 8.65 44 964
18 15237 7.23 40 851
19 14999 7.17 32 770
20 15504 7.3 21 801
21 14407 6.6 28 754
22 16423 7.86 28 903
23 16072 7.84 26 950
24 19044 8.88 38 1109
25 15880 7.59 34 938
26 9588 4.51 3 871
27 12875 6.15 17 685
28 17757 8.47 20 926
29 15202 7.15 31 746
30 15989 7.45 30 714

July 1 15398 7.31 40 844
2 11726 5.73 6 725
3 12853 6.13 17 743
4 9983 4.76 3 607
5 13754 6.61 16 828
6 16552 7.82 36 872
7 19359 9.03 38 961
8 18672 8.76 57 854
9 22760 10.49 47 1098
10 15549 7.22 36 778
11 19913 9.14 43 970
12 11309 5.13 18 573
13 20227 9.6 46 999
14 16626 7.94 44 871
15 18995 9.05 42 967
16 17934 8.63 34 911
17 20876 9.86 38 966
18 15866 7.6 48 823
19 15355 7.24 34 801
20 19300 9.32 60 977
21 15723 7.61 45 788
22 19257 9.16 43 924
23 20192 9.74 69 1041
24 17172 8.02 33 841
25 19006 8.96 24 956
26 20073 9.05 40 1011
27 11673 5.59 10 836
28 16152 7.62 31 1020
29 17370 8.54 56 1010
30 18128 8.4 31 975


31 19465 9.02 45 1185]

If you're wondering about the weird behavior of the Exercise calculation, well, so am I. I have not been logging my road mileage anywhere consistently -- I could probably pull it off the graphs if I really put my mind to it but I'm unlikely to do so. Just looking at the numbers day-to-day as I am walking, it's clear there's a real step-homeostasis: if I walk a lot more going on walks, I walk a lot less around the house/just doing what I do during the day. And vice versa. Despite that, there has been an overall upward trend in total steps during the day (all my 20K+ step days were in July) and the minimum has come up as well (fewer <10K step days in July than in June, and the lone <10K step day in July was really close).

I'd keep the Watch even if I went back to FitBit, simply because it is so convenient for monitoring messages, household activity (garage door opening) and upcoming events on my calendar. But it is also an adequate step counter and fitness monitor, in that it provides ongoing accountability and motivation. While it is very sad that I no longer enjoy the FitBit social ecosystem, I don't miss it enough to wear a FitBit along with Watch. Hopefully, the day will eventually come when FitBit and Apple can play well together. If it takes them long enough, I'll poke around at Strava at some point, because it seems like that's all everyone talk about any more anyway.
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It is just possible that at some point in reading this blog, you might have asked yourself, whyever the fuck does this woman post under the handle "walkitout"? And the answer is: because I find there are few problems that are not improved by walking and, ideally, talking about those problems with a friend.

I did not always feel this way. And I do not always have time to walk as much as I would like. For example, during the exhausting kids-really-young years, I was lucky to get a one mile walk in most week days. However, for the last couple years, I've been trying to get my mileage back up to What It Once Was. When I lived in Seattle, a lot of my walking was around Green Lake (just under 3 miles -- there were days when I'd meet a sequence of friends for walks and coffee or a meal, and wind up going around the lake three times), altho I eventually decided that flat was boring and started hiking. I had three glorious years of hiking before marriage/relocation/children destroyed my healthy habits.


Anyway. Back in March, IIRC, I got a FitBit, which put me on tilt. I'd been trying to consistently hit 10K steps using an Omron for years, but often was under or waaaayyy over (which did Un Pretty Things to my mood), but the FitBit ecosystem caused me to escalate. I then got the Apple Watch, and I have sort of quit paying attention to steps (no more FitBit ecosystem. Sigh) in favor of road miles. And I am pleased to note that I've been consistently hitting 4-6 miles per day, every day of the week, for a few weeks now (highest mileage day was 7). These aren't steps that add up to miles -- those are much higher. These are measured miles on the road and sidewalk.

To be utterly clear. I DO NOT RUN. This is all walking mileage. It hadn't really occurred to me that this was something to be impressed by, until my marathon running (altho that's gone by now) and century riding (he still does that occasionally) husband pointed out that his weekly running mileage never got much higher than the 30-35 I am now doing.

So there's that.

Here's how I did it. I added loops to my 1 mile walk, but not consecutively. So I'd go for a 1 mile walk in the morning, one after lunch, then one in the evening. I started consolidating, so I'd walk a mile myself, then a mile with my walking partner. Then I started taking a 3 mile loop walk in the evening, instead of multiple loops together. I have the early stages of arthritis in my feet and hands, so I can't suddenly increase -- I have to work up to everything slowly. And I'm heavy (over 200 pounds) so I replace my shoes regularly. It's good to have music and/or a headset that you can talk on the phone with a friend to help the time go by, when you don't feel like just thinking.

When it's hot and muggy, of course, you want a shower even after a slow walk, but if you just mosey along and the weather isn't too nuts, you really can break up a large volume of exercise throughout the day. I won't say that if I can do it, anyone can do it, because I couldn't have done this when the kids were younger. But if you are struggling to fit physical activity into your day, I'm a big fan of slow, steady and in bite-size chunks.
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T.'s last day of school was yesterday, so we spent the whole day together. It started out a little harrowing, but we got the hang of it after a bit. I did not want to give up my several-walks-a-day habit, and he neither wanted to come with me nor did he want to stay home while I went out for 20 minutes at a time. After some emotional discussion and a time-out for both of us to be quiet and calm down, he decided that scootering while I walked might be pretty fun. It is, after all, how we spent several summers together, before he instead spent all his time with babysitters.

So. We went once by ourselves. Then once with my walking partner. Then we went grocery shopping. Then we had lunch (no dessert, because he had gymnastics after and he has trouble if he eats too much). Then we stopped at a playground where he played while I walked the half mile loop around the lake. Then gymnastics. Then back home. Another walk. Then dinner with R. Then I went for a walk because the Manhattan at dinner was insanely huge and even leaving a third or more of it, I was drunk and needed to sober up a bit.

The previous night, we had gone to CVS in search of chewable gummy vitamins and canned fruit salad. We'd had another discussion about healthy eating, and how he really doesn't eat any fruits or vegetables and that is a problem. After a wide ranging set of options were explored and dismissed, and there were some tears, he decided fruit salad (the canned kind) was the least horrible option. He had some with breakfast this morning, and more throughout the day. Honestly, if I can get him to be that extra amount of active that he was today (never mind gymnastics -- I'm thinking more scootering and playing at the playground) and eat fruit salad, I would be willing to retire from the field of Let's Improve Some Habits and go back to being the yeah, whatever I do not care parent that I normally am. But he apparently decided to branch out and try Greek Yogurt, too. Which is also fine.
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There's a very sweet boy on A.'s bus that she nags into giving her small things: a little rubber ball, a polished rock, stuff like that. After a few of these came home, I thought, we need A. to participate in a little reciprocation. So off we went to Learning Express, where we couldn't find anything that looked right for a small logic toy, so we got a medium sized one instead, Rush Hour by ThinkFun. And the kid liked it, so that was good, but I had R. hand it over on the bus _into_ school. The kid was clear it was for him, but it violated the "no toys from home" rule and confused the teacher at school who thought it might be for the classroom or something. We got it all straightened out and I apologized for the fuss to the kid on the way home; bus driver thought it was fine if, in the future, we just dealt with this on the bus ride home instead. I was particularly pleased that A. _wanted_ to buy someone a present, and did not ask for anything for herself at the toy store. Yay, learning to give!

I've been out to Great Hill Saturday, Sunday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, and I am now feeling the kind of grinding all over tired that I remember from pre-kids when I used to do a lot of day hikes and other things. Even better, my foot, which can tolerate only about a mile at a time on pavement (arthritis), feels _better_ after one of these walks than before (despite the quarter mile on pavement each way to get to Great Hill). So instead of having to carefully get one mile walks, two when I push it, two or three times a day spread out so my foot recovers in between, I can get close to three miles (2.2 on the loop, a quarter mile there and back), and then get a mile before or after with my walking partner, wind up with way more exercise and hurt less -- all in less total time than before.

Huge win. Dunno what I'm gonna do in the fall when the snow comes back, but for the next few months, this is gonna be awesome.

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