Wednesday, November 1, 2023

CrossFit and Cruising...?

Can cruises and CrossFit mix? This is the question and challenge for me in these new days of my life with Brian.


I say “new days” because it does feel like we are cherishing one another with renewed attention, taking each other less for granted, more cognizant of our mortality, perhaps with briefer time together than we desire. We went on a 10-day Caribbean cruise in April, learning how significant it was for Brian’s pastoral sensibilities to be unreachable on the deep blue seas. On land, he’s reachable, no matter his intentions to be “away.” Cruising it is then…and taking advantage of any and all the time we may have. Decades, we hope…which lands us in much higher intention for being together, for being “away” together, for enjoying and exploring pleasure that comes with being older, having more plentiful resources, pampering ourselves in things we enjoy: napping, good food, good drink, good views, and as I say, “the option for solitude and fresh air at the same time.” A room with a balcony, in other words.

 The ten-day cruise left me with an unexpected—though should have been expected—result: a slew of extra weight I had not imagined would accrue, so much, so quickly! The summer became about returning to my manageable preferred health and fitness levels, aims.


I’m not overtly focused on weight things for myself anymore, though I tend it as one measure of my health routine. I took the baseline scan for this season, a day before we left for Miami, a five-day cruise to the Bahamas and Cozumel, Mexico. I was closest to my “normal” as I’d been in months, which pleased me. And I realized my basic challenge now is how to enjoy and indulge a bit more in moderation. If we are doing this 2-3 times a year, arranging our finances so to make that possible, I need to find a better way than “fuck all limits,” which was my spring approach. That approach will land me in at least 20 extra pounds to carry!


What I’m learning, therefore… It’s easy and familiar to remain “on plan” with high proteins, veggie, and fat for breakfast. You really can do just about anything you want in these restaurants—you’ve already paid as “a package deal.” I realized I could order two omelets each morning, with asides as veggies and/or more proteins. I get rid of my “bread plate” when they bring the coffee, which means I have a no-extra-carb-at-all breakfast.


I have also decided against any of the room-service carbs Brian loves each morning, that I acquiesced to last time. They aren’t “splurge-worthy,” to be sure. I can enjoy a cup of black coffee before I head to the fitness center “simply to move.” I’ve found the rower open each morning, and this morning, I checked into the WOD for possibilities. It was a DB workout, so that worked well! I’ve stayed with my Whoop band, figuring out the technology to get it to track here on board. It helps me stay fitness-focused somehow. It’s also given me some “audible-book” listening time, which has been fun.


Lunch is often at the Spa CafĂ©, which has prepared salads—chicken, tuna, salmon—with multigrain breadsticks that are tempting, but avoidable. It’s good to have a little protein midday, particularly as cocktail hour begins earlier than at home. It’s good to have protein/fats in my system. So remaining basically on plan for the bulk of the day works. At least so far.


Which means the evenings are for indulgence and the slow, lazy 2.5 hour dinner with Brian. The portions are bite-size, as fancy restaurants do, which means it is all about taste combinations with good wine. It’s nice to not bother with decisions and discernments, simply enjoying whatever we decide to try from the menu. Without portion, content, or buffet challenges. And enjoying a dessert every other night puts a little pacing in the sugar onslaught these trips can be. It’s easy to order an espresso for “dessert,” enjoying the event in a sugar-less way.


The alcohol consumption simply is what it is. The Captain of the ship was introduced before the theatre show last night, offering a good line for us. “Hello, my name is Captain Dimitri. I am your designated driver for the duration of the cruise.” We all laughed, well aware. I will say that the cocktails served on board are smaller than Brian and I tend to pour at home, so that’s a good pacing for me. And my Whoop band shows a workable ‘recovery’ the next day if I switch to club-soda by about 7:30 or 8.


So…this seems to be indulgence with moderation for the impending cruising years… I’ll be curious what my body feels like by Saturday, our trip home. I already feel better than I did this past spring, which gives me a smile for honoring my own body’s needs while enjoying the pleasures that are offered me too!