Work At Home; Walk Near Home

I’m nearing the end of Week 5 of working at home (out of my kitchen). The commute from my master bedroom to my “desk” (kitchen table) is right at about 6 seconds.

I actually drove to my actual workplace for the 2ND Monday morning in a row this past Monday, and I spent over 5 hours there trying to work as normal of a traditional work day as possible. I plan to do it again this upcoming Monday !  Maybe in May I’ll expand to Thursdays as well at my actual workplace.

I still don’t miss the traffic between here and there. My workplace is about 5 miles away as the crow flies, but it’s currently a rough and tough 9½ miles away by road (due to road detours). On a really good day it can take 20 minutes to get between home and work. On a bad day – 40 minutes or more.

Meanwhile my walking (for exercise) has intensified recently. Between March 22ND and April 22ND (a full month) I walked on 9 mornings at dawn. My start times were as follows:  0715, 0709, 0707, 0706, 0705, 0701, 0703, 0658, and 0650. (Dawn is starting earlier each morning.) I’ve walked a total of 13.09 miles. Prior to the COVID-19 pandemic I had only walked 3 times this season (once in December, January, and February) for a total of 8.50 miles. Those 3 walks were at the walking / jogging track at the (currently closed) city park down the road from my neighborhood.

This is Season 13 of my fitness program (also known as “The Major’s Walk-A-Thon”). It’s my busiest season since Season 10 (2016-2017), and it’s my 5TH-busiest season ever.

I probably have a few more walks to go before this season ends (due to unbearable weather conditions). Here in South Florida we have a 5-month rainy season that runs from the middle of May through the middle of October. We receive over 70% of our annual rainfall during those 5 months. That’s about 4 feet of rain in 5 months. Additionally minimum temperatures at dawn generally hover between 77°F and 83°F with relative humidity at or just below 100%. Did I mention all of the bugs (many of which bite) that love that moisture ?

Yeah Season 13 is nearing its end, but Season 14 shall commence later this year once a new dry season takes hold here in South Florida.

“The Major’s Walk-A-Thon” is dedicated to my dad – William L. Day – who lost the ability to walk on his own in 2006 due to the crippling effects of Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS). The disease would take his life less than 4 years later. 54 years ago today – April 23RD 1966 – he and my mom got married in the Philippines.

All rights reserved (c) 2020 Christopher M. Day, CountUp Ministries

Weekend Kickoff Mini-Thoughts

It’s back for the first time in 5 months – a rapid-fire session of thoughts on my mind right this minute:

  • I miss doing these fun blog posts.
  • This was a fan favorite from the early days of this blog.
  • By “early days” I mean late-2000s.
  • Most of you weren’t tracking with me back then.
  • “Tracking with me” – that’s a favorite phrase among pastors and preachers.
  • This “Sunday Scripture” I’ll look back at my 4-part sermon “Faces & Heels”.
  • It’ll be a nice wrap-up of that 4-Sunday experiment.
  • So I’m nearing the end of Week 4 of my work-at-home experience.
  • It’s an experience – no longer an experiment.
  • The biggest “pro” – not having to deal with traffic.
  • The biggest “con” – working longer (and more erratic) hours at home.
  • I’m working out of my kitchen.
  • I never eat in my kitchen.
  • I always eat in my living room.
  • I’ve driven only 88 miles over the past 28 days.
  • I last filled-up with gas 37 days ago.
  • Last week I walked only 11.63 miles.
  • That was barely over 25,000 steps in 7 days.
  • That was the lowest ever during my 4½-year #Fitbit era.
  • 3 weeks ago was my 3RD-lowest week of the era.
  • Ironically despite little to no exercise – I’m losing weight.
  • I can’t explain that.
  • Maybe I’ll get up and walk at dawn this morning.
  • Lately we’ve been close to 80°F at dawn.
  • This morning we could actually dip into the lower-70s.
  • That’s an incentive to get up and walk around outside.
  • Next week marks 12 years since I quit smoking !
  • I smoked from age 11 to 41.
  • You know I’m doing a lot less laundry since I’ve been working at home.
  • My washer and dryer are using less electric power.
  • My A.C. is using more electric power.
  • It runs at the same temperature day and night now (77°F).
  • Happy 39TH Birthday tomorrow to my sister-in-law Christina !
  • She doesn’t read this blog.
  • Nobody in my family reads this blog.
  • Happy 10TH Birthday this coming Monday to my oldest niece Taylor !
  • I met Taylor for the first time at #DFW when she was 24 days old.
  • I’m looking forward to seeing my family again at the end of June.
  • Well I’m running out of things to write, so let’s end it here.
  • That was abrupt.

All rights reserved (c) 2020 Christopher M. Day, CountUp Ministries

The Major’s Walk-A-Thon

Date: Monday February 17TH 2020
Time (EST): 7:02 AM – 7:54 AM
Sunrise (EST): 6:55 AM
Location: Homestead Florida
Sky: Sunny & Clear
Temperature: 65°F / 18°C
Dewpoint: 64°F / 18°C
Relative Humidity: 96% Steady
Winds: Calm
Barometric Pressure: 30.02″ Falling

What a beautiful morning for my 3RD power-walk of Season 13 on that asphalt track on the hill at the city park down the road from my neighborhood. 65°F felt so good at the start of my walk, but I was drenched in sweat some 50 minutes later, as temperatures began their rapid ascent towards the mid-80s later in the day.

This was a 2.84-mile power-walk in 51 minutes and 50 seconds. That’s a pace of 18 minutes and 14 seconds per mile. (I walked 3.29 MPH.) The track that I walk on is about 0.47 miles around. I did 6 laps.

Some Fitbit heart rate stats – 38 out of 52 minutes in “peak”; 10 out of 52 minutes in “cardio”; 164 BPM at peak; 146 BPM on average.

Walk-A-Thon 13-3

That’s a photo of the eastern sky at 7:02 AM – 7 minutes after sunrise.

As I walk I pray for good health, and for the safety and security of my fellow walkers on the track. I also pray for my neighborhood, my city, and the surrounding area.

These 13 songs randomly played on my iPod Shuffle as I walked. They represent the soundtrack of my life – past before Christ – and present in Christ.

7:02 AM – “Afternoon Delight” – Starland Vocal Band
7:03 AM – “Unfinished” – Mandisa
7:07 AM – “Take Me Home Tonight” – Eddie Money Ft. Ronnie Spector
7:10 AM – “Glorious Day” – Passion Ft. Kristian Stanfill
7:15 AM – “I Wanna B With U” – Fun Factory
7:18 AM – “Wait” – White Lion
7:22 AM – “(Every Time I Turn Around) Back In Love Again” – L.T.D.
7:27 AM – “Joyride” – Roxette
7:31 AM – “Into The Night” – Benny Mardones
7:35 AM – “Rapture” – Iio
7:39 AM – “Let It Ride” – Bachman-Turner Overdrive
7:43 AM – “I Wanna Be Rich” – Calloway
7:48 AM – “All Right Now” – Free

All rights reserved (c) 2020 Christopher M. Day, CountUp Ministries

I’ll Take Potpourri For The Weekend

Greetings my friends !  It’s the weekend again – because here at #CountUp weekends always begin on Thursday mornings !

This weekend I’ll post the usual 4 new blog posts now (Thursday morning), Friday morning, Sunday afternoon, and Monday morning.

This Saturday I hope to do another “Walk-A-Thon” at dawn at the city park down the street from my neighborhood. After that I plan to visit the Fruit And Spice Park about 7 miles away from my home. I visited last March, and I was convinced (before I even entered the park grounds) to buy an annual pass for $25 in lieu of a one-time visit ticket for $10 thinking that (as a local) I would visit on a regular basis. Well I haven’t been back since then, so I might as well get in a free visit this weekend while it’s cool out. (We’ll be in the 50s and 60s this Saturday morning.)

Fruit & Spice Park

Later on Saturday I’ll return home (probably exhausted from all of that walking), and I’ll continue my Bible study and sermon-writing. I’m currently working on my sermon after next – tentatively titled “Malachi & Messages”. It’s probably the first of two (maybe even three) sermons in a row all about the minor prophet Malachi.

Oh ! – I’m part of #LivePDNation – so there’s that on Friday and Saturday night.

On Sunday I’ll enjoy quality time praising, worshiping, and celebrating my Lord + Savior Jesus Christ with my church family. As I tell my brothers and sisters in Christ on each new Sunday morning – it’s the peak of my week. It’s the greatest 4 hours of my life each week.

On Monday at 3 AM U.S. East Coast Time I’ll post my brand new Top 10 weekly hit music chart. Get ready for a brand new # 1 smash. (You read it here first.)

So that’s my weekend forecast. It should be a fun one !

I’ll be back here in 24 hours to go RETRO – back a full decade ago – to a time when I gave up Christian music on the radio forever (or so I thought at the time).

All rights reserved (c) 2020 Christopher M. Day, CountUp Ministries

The Major’s Walk-A-Thon

Date: Saturday January 25TH 2020
Time (EST): 7:07 AM – 7:50 AM
Sunrise (EST): 7:07 AM
Location: Homestead Florida
Sky: Mostly Sunny
Temperature: 64°F / 18°C
Dewpoint: 63°F / 17°C
Relative Humidity: 96% Falling
Winds: N 3 MPH
Barometric Pressure: 30.03″ Rising

It took me 7 weeks to get back out on that asphalt track at the city park down the road from my neighborhood, but I finally did it with near ideal weather conditions. This was my 2ND power-walk of Season 13, and I’m actually behind last season’s pace which was my worst performance since Season 7. Hopefully we get more cool and dry Saturday mornings at dawn like this one so that I can get to steppin’.

This was a 2.42-mile power-walk in 43 minutes and 9 seconds. That’s a pace of 17 minutes and 51 seconds per mile. (I walked 3.36 MPH.) It was a little bit shorter than my average power-walk. The track that I walk on is about 0.47 miles around. I did 5 laps. A 6TH lap would have gotten me to right around my overall average of just under 3 miles. I’ll try for that 6TH lap next Saturday morning at dawn.

Some Fitbit heart rate stats – 31 out of 43 minutes in “peak”; 8 out of 43 minutes in “cardio”; 164 BPM at peak; 148 BPM on average.

Walk-A-Thon 13-2

That’s a photo of the eastern sky at 7:09 AM – 2 minutes after sunrise.

As I walk I pray for good health, and for the safety and security of my fellow walkers on the track, my neighborhood, and my city and the surrounding area.

These 13 songs randomly played on my iPod Shuffle as I walked. They represent the soundtrack of my life – past before Christ – and present in Christ.

7:07 AM – “Bad Blood” – Neil Sedaka
7:09 AM – “Butterfly (Come And Dance With Me)” – Crazy Town
7:12 AM – “Unskinny Bop” – Poison
7:16 AM – “Let It Ride” – Bachman-Turner Overdrive
7:21 AM – “Can You Feel The Love Tonight” – Stellar Kart
7:24 AM – “Every Time You Run” – Manafest Ft. Trevor McNevan
7:28 AM – “Lay, Lady, Lay” – Bob Dylan
7:31 AM – “Walking On Broken Glass” – Annie Lennox
7:35 AM – “Sister Golden Hair” – America
7:39 AM – “Hypnotize” – The Notorious B.I.G.
7:42 AM – “Joyride” – Roxette
7:47 AM – “Respectable” – Mel & Kim
7:50 AM – “Call It Love” – Poco

All rights reserved (c) 2020 Christopher M. Day, CountUp Ministries

Southwest Florida Road-Trip

This past U.S. holiday weekend I enjoyed a 3-day / 3-county / 360-mile Florida road-trip to and from Fort Myers. It was my first visit to the region since last July. I always enjoy visiting Southwest Florida (Collier and Lee County). Usually I venture over there to see a concert at the Hertz Arena, and this trip was no exception.

My first stop though after crossing the Everglades via the Tamiami Trail was the flagship branch of the multi-site Collier County Museum in East Naples. It was my first visit since June 2012. Back then I thought it was my first visit ever – until I saw some of the exhibits outside – and then I realized that I had been there years earlier.

At the end of my 90-minute visit I picked-up a brochure for a nearby place that I never knew existed – the Naples Museum Of Military History – at the main terminal of the Naples Airport. So I went there, and I immersed myself in all of the awesome displays there. They were overflowing at the seams in the two rooms that they occupy there. They need more space, and hopefully they get it.

After that I took a ride out to the country and into the woods for another first-time visit ever – the Corkscrew Swamp Sanctuary. What a wonderful and beautiful place this was – especially on a sunny and coolish day. I’m sure that it would be a miserable place to be during our 9-month bug season and especially our 5-month rainy season, but that was truly a great day to be outdoors strolling the 2.25-mile elevated boardwalk absorbing nature’s beauty – created by my Almighty God.

By the way all of the above was Day 1 of my road-trip !  Day 2 started in Fort Myers at probably their # 1 tourist attraction – the Edison & Ford Winter Estates. It was my first visit since April 2011. I love this place. I could work and have fun at this place after I retire from my military / civil service career. I took the 1-hour and 15-minute guided tour which was a lot of fun (even though I had done it before). I’d do it again !

On Sunday night I went to the Hertz Arena to see Franklin Graham conclude his recent tour of Florida. He led us in prayer for our nation and our leaders, and then he preached a classic Billy Graham Crusade sermon on Repentance & Salvation. That’s a topic that I’m quite familiar with, as many of my sermons are about the same. Jeremy Camp opened and closed for Franklin, as he performed 7 of his greatest hits. I’ll be seeing Jeremy Camp perform again at this very same arena in 6 weeks, as he opens for MercyMe.

Day 3 of 3 started back in East Naples at the Naples Botanical Garden – yet another first-time visit. I walked well over 3 miles for 2 hours at this fun place on a chilly and overcast morning.

I’ve got over 80 photos of this fun road-trip to and from Southwest Florida – also known as Florida’s Paradise Coast. At least 60 of those 80 photos will probably be uploaded and captioned on my Flickr site over the next few weeks. But I’ll close this blog post with a sneak-peek. It’s a photo of the chalkboard at the start of the boardwalk at the Corkscrew Swamp Sanctuary where visitors can write-down what they’ve seen along their walk on the boardwalk. A little less than 90 minutes later – there were more sightings documented on the chalkboard.

IMG_4407

All rights reserved (c) 2020 Christopher M. Day, CountUp Ministries

The Major’s Walk-A-Thon

Date: Saturday December 07TH 2019
Time (EST): 7:00 AM – 7:58 AM
Sunrise (EST): 6:54 AM
Location: Homestead Florida
Sky: Sunny & Clear
Temperature: 58°F / 14°C
Dewpoint: 55°F / 13°C
Relative Humidity: 89% Falling
Winds: N 3 MPH
Barometric Pressure: 30.11″ Rising

It’s the long-awaited (for me anyway) Season 13 Premiere of my personal fitness program, and this appears to be the latest start on record – 2 days later than last season’s late start on December 05TH 2018.

Last season – Season 12 – started late and never really took off. I only power-walked on 4 occasions – barely surpassing a total of 10 miles. It was a far cry from Seasons 8, 9, and 10 – when I walked 73.27, 49.28, and 44.82 miles respectively.

My power-walks are purely seasonal due to the fact that I live in deep subtropical South Florida. My seasons coincide with our 7-month “dry” season that starts on or around October 15TH each year and ends on or around May 15TH each year.

It was another cool and crisp morning here in South Florida – our 5TH consecutive morning in the low-to-mid-50s – which is nearly unprecedented – even in early-December. That’s about 10° below normal for a sunrise temperature.

So I kicked-off Season 13 with a blast – a 3.24-mile power-walk in 57 minutes and 23 seconds. That’s a pace of 17 minutes and 43 seconds per mile. (I walked 3.39 MPH.) It was the longest walk to kick-off a new season ever – eclipsing my previous record set just last year with a 2.88-mile walk to kick-off Season 12. It was the longest walk in over 21 months – since my Season 11 finale walk of 3.59 miles.

Some Fitbit heart rate stats – 31 out of 58 minutes in “peak”; 19 out of 58 minutes in “cardio”; 160 BPM at peak; 139 BPM on average.

Walk-A-Thon 13-1

It felt really good to be out there again. As is the overall theme of “The Major’s Walk-A-Thon” since the very start (Christmas Eve 2007) I walked and prayed for my loved ones, for my coworkers, for those who were also walking on the track at the same time as me, and for my fellow citizens of Homestead and Miami-Dade County. I prayed for good health, increasing strength, wisdom from Christ, and peace in our time.

Finally “The Major’s Walk-A-Thon” is dedicated to my dear Dad in Heaven – William Lesley Day (1941-2010). He began to show the symptoms of Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS) – “Lou Gehrig’s Disease” – during the latter part of 2006. He lost the ability to walk on his own shortly after that. He would eventually succumb to the deadly disease 4 years later. God encouraged me to walk for my dad, and follow Christ. I believe that my dad is cheering me on now from Heaven.

All rights reserved (c) 2019 Christopher M. Day, CountUp Ministries