Archive for the 'Eco' Category

Recycling Saved the Day

Wednesday, July 23rd, 2008

When I got home from work yesterday I kept hearing strange noises. First I heard what sounded like a siren when I turned on the fossit in the kitchen. Then I heard extra voices when I was watching TV. I hit mute thinking my cell phone may have been ringing, but it stopped. I just shrugged it off and went about my business.

I walked over and grabbed yet another 100 calorie box from the stash I picked up at Target. On the way back to the couch I noticed a large water bottle in my trash can. Oh the horror! I picked it up out of the trash can to move it to the recycle bin and I noticed a cell phone was hiding underneath it. I called my dog walker’s mother right away to tell her what I found. So my total obsession with Recycling saved the day.

Finding the cell phone did resolve the extra voices I was hearing…well at least those that aren’t in my head. I did however notice the siren noise again later when I filled the dog’s water bowl. I am going to need to have a plumber come out because I also noticed that that nice clicky noise that I have associated with the pressure regulator in my plumbing has stopped. Luckily it is just me and I won’t be flushing the toilet on myself while I am in the shower anytime soon, so I shouldn’t have to worry about having any water pressure issues.

Rock Bottom

Tuesday, May 27th, 2008

If there is such a thing as “rock bottom” I feel as though I hit it Friday and Saturday.   Friday I woke up with a massive amount of sinus pressure.  This led to a lay around and do absolutely nothing day.  I guess one “benefit” of the single life is that I can still get away with this kinds of things.  Sunday I woke up nausiated and then the slowly developed into another headache and another day of lying around and doing absolutely nothing.  Between those two days I managed to consume an entire stuffed crust pizza by myself chased by a pint of Ben and Jerry’s Americone Dream.

Yesterday I woke up and the sinus pressure was still there, but I wasn’t going to let it get me down.  I forced myself out the door and cleaned up outside the house.  Grass was cut, mums were pinched, daffodils were tied back and bushes were pruned.  I came back in and took a quick nap.  I think it was a combo of the heat and continued food coma from Saturday and Sunday that triggered the nap.  After about an hour I got myself out of bed and went to work.  Dusting, vacuuming (including moving furniture), windexing, scrubbing, … the whole 9 yards.  The house is spotless and that makes me very happy.  I feel much more in control when everything is in its place.  I still want to go through the stack of papers in the office and do a bit more tidying in the guest room.

As a part of my attempts to conserve energy I have been avoiding turning on the air conditioner.  It was worked really well so far too.  Last night I turned on the ceiling fan and set another fan on the table that I aimed at the dog.  All was well till about 3:30 this morning.  The dog started panting and the whole bed started shaking.  I decided to stop torturing her and headed down to turn on the AC.  By they time morning came around I was freezing, but I know it was going to be a warm and humid day and I didn’t want Tillie to be uncomfy.  I did turn the thermostat up to 72 before leaving the house so that the AC wasn’t working over time.

Got back to running this morning.  I have only run once in the last 10 days.  Between my bad eating and a painful ankle I just couldn’t get myself out the door.  My ankle is feeling great after 3 miles this morning.  I iced my ankle carefully after the run.  I plan to try to keep my mileage down for a while and then slowly build up for the half marathons in the fall.  I do still plan to do 6 miles this weekend and then I have the 7 mile race the next weekend.  After that I will drop the mileage down to a 5 mile long run and build a stronger base. 

RLF Goal Met!

Friday, April 11th, 2008

Thanks to 3 very supportive people I have made my RLF fundraising goal already!  How awesome is that!  I am very thankful to my friends for helping me reach it.  I didn’t expect to get there so quickly.  I know $100 is not a lot, but since I am bad at asking people for donations it has really worked out for me.

I took a couple Terracycle boxes to work and posted a message on our electronic bulletin board asking for donations.  I have been very successful so far!  I am really excited about that.  I am hoping to branch out and put up some more boxes to get some more donations.  😀

Busy, Busy and more Busy…

Wednesday, April 2nd, 2008

Work has been swamped which cramps my ability to blog.  Quick overview of what has been going on:

  1. All of the daffodils have died except for the bunch that were under the lighthouse, which are still going strong.
  2. I participated in Earth Hour this weekend.  Unforunately I knocked the candle I was reading by on the floor spilling blue wax on my neutral carpet.  I figure whatever energy I saved I ended up spending on the iron the next day as I used wax paper to lift the wax from the carpet.
  3. Pokey is looking for people that are interested in running the American Oddyssey relay.  *cough* Tawnda *cough* If you have an interest drop her an e-mail.  I already spoke up that I want to do it.  Just think how much fun it will be to spend 24 hours in a van with me after I have run 5.5, 11, then 16.5 miles without having showered.  Yummy!
  4. I was sitting on the TransFirmer watching Biggest Loser last night while I waited for the dryer to finish and noticed that my hot water heater was turned all the way up.  One more thing I can do to help our environment and my water bill!  I turned it down to just below medium and even as a person that likes her skin to be red and tingly when I get out of the shower I had no complaints this morning. 
  5. I have surpassed the half way mark for the Walk Across Arizona.  I am a little behind on my goal, but I figure as the weather gets warmer my walks with Tillie will get longer, as will my runs, and I will still be able to reach my goal!
  6. I purchased myself a neti pot to help me get through this allergy season.  Woke up one day with morning breath for the first time in as long as I can remember.  I take it as a sign that I actually slept the whole night with my mouth closed, which means I was actually able to breath through my nose the entire night.  Yay!

I know I am missing stuff.  As it comes to me today I will try to update this post.  🙂 


Actually, It Can Be Easy Being Green

Wednesday, March 5th, 2008

Recently I have a renewed desire to live as green as I can.  I want to leave an impact on this planet when I go but I don’t want it to be in landfills if you know what I mean.  I am not asking anyone to go Freegan here, but there are small changes we call can make to lessen our impact on our mother earth.  Here are just a few of the ones that I have adopted:

  1. When you are drying your hands in a public place use 1 less paper towel.  There are signs in the bathrooms as LAX that give you a statistic as to how many trees can be saved if you only use one less paper towel.  Of course I can’t remember that number but I will have to try to remember to write it down in September.  When drying your hands at home use reusable towels instead of paper.
  2. Don’t buy bottled water, instead use reusable bottles.  Try sticking to those with the numbers 2, 4 and 5 inside the recycling symbol on the bottom of the bottle for your own safety.  If you do end up having to use a bottled water reuse the bottle for the day and then recycle it.  This is what I do when I am at races and have no choice but to use a bottled water.
  3. Switch your home cleaning products to those that are not petroleum based.  I recently switched over my dishwashing detergent and laundry detergent to products that are earth friendly.  I am happy to report that they actually do a better job than the stuff I used before.  I am not the best at pre-rinsing dishes before tossing them in the dishwasher and almost always have one bowl with something that I had eaten crusted onto it.  That problem has been significantly reduced since switching to this new detergent.
  4. Sign up for a junk mail reduction service.  Of course everyone notices my add for Green Dimes off to the side here.  It really has helped me reduce my every day junk mail.  So not only do you lessen your impact from the amount of junk mail you toss (or recycle, see item #7) but you also lessen the stress on yourself by how much junk mail you see day-in and day-out.
  5. Slow down!  When the light turns green and you stomp on the gas you use more gas in the long run.  If you slow down your acceleration and obey the speed limit you actually use less gas.  This is better for our planet and easier on your pocket book.
  6. Take your own bag to the grocery store.  I purchased some unbleached cotton bags off of Amazon and I take them to the grocery store with me when I go.  Not only do you limit the number of petroleum based plastic bags that end up in the trash (or recycling bin, again see item #7) but most grocery stores will give you a kick back for saving them money.  You don’t even have to go online to purchase these bags because most grocery stores now sell them right there in the store.
  7. Recycle, recycle, recycle.  Can’t say it enough.  Find out what recycling programs your community supports and participate.  Don’t have one or have items that you can’t recycle locally?  Look into programs like Terracycle.  This is something so easy to do and it has a lasting impact.
  8. Buy recycled products.  Look for items that declare themselves as being made from recycled materials.  It helps promote #7 and limits the new resources used in making the items you use every day. 
  9. Turn off the lights.  I have made it a habit to turn off lights as I go.  I had a bad rep for leaving them on while I ran from room to room, but now I don’t care what I am doing as I leave one room and enter another I flip the switches as I go.
  10. Use compact fluorescent bulbs.  I have been converting my light bulbs over one-by-one as my old bulbs have died.  They use less energy and last for years!  My first one burnt out a month ago and I bought it my first year of college.  We are talking 1996 here people!
  11. Unplug appliances that are just sitting.  Even your toaster oven will soak some juice if you leave it plugged in.  If you aren’t using something unplug it.  This is hard to remember, but I am getting better and better at it every day.  (Did I unplug after toasting my bagel this morning?)
  12. Limit your showers and turn off the water as you brush your teeth.  My mission for this week has been to try to limit my showers to 10 minutes.  I always turn off the water as I brush my teeth so that water doesn’t just run down the drain.
  13. Donate your old clothes and shoes.  I already take my old clothes to goodwill, but in addition I am going to start taking my running shoes to the local running store.  There is a bin out front where they take old shoes and either send them to Africa for budding runners or send them to the local homeless shelter.  I have about 8 pair that I need to get out of my closet.

I am sure there are things I missed, but these are just a few things to get some ideas going in your own heads.  If I had the money there are two big things I would love to do: 1. Get a tankless water heater and 2. Install solar panels on my roof.

On to workout stuff!  Last week I road 14 miles on my recumbent bike one day out of desperation caused by bad weather.  I felt so much faster during my run the next day I couldn’t believe it.  I think it really ecourages me to pick up my turnover when I run.  This morning I again jumped on my bike for 7.50 miles after I finished some strength training.  We will see how it impacts my run tomorrow morning.  If it works out well I think I will make the bike a regular part of my routine as so many of my running friends already do.