The Death March – Diet Day 39

Anyone who knows me knows that just about everything I do somehow ends up going over the top. It would appear that I am incapable of doing anything small and it doesn’t seem to matter what aspect of my life that pertains to. It’s not like I start out by planning things to be huge and out of control, they just seem to end up that way.

Let me give you a historical example. A few years back I was involved in an online community of Disney pin traders. It was a close-knit group of people who loved Disney magic and happened to collect pins. Walt Disney World scheduled a pin trading convention at Epcot and several of the people from the online community decided to attend.

I thought it sounded like fun and made reservations for Trina and I to be at the convention. I mentioned online how it would be great if we all could meet at the convention and get to put a face with a name. Everyone loved the idea and I volunteered to set something up.

With Disney expecting well over 1,000 people at the event I wondered how in the world our little group would ever be able to identify each other since none of us had ever met in person. It occurred to me that we needed some way for us to know we were part of the same group. A simple nametag sticker would suffice but seemed kind of lame. Instead I suggested that we get matching pin lanyards. Everyone loved the idea. The problem was, we had no idea where to get them.

I approached Trina and knowing how talented and crafty she is I asked if she could make a pin-trading lanyard. I showed her what I was thinking and after pondering it for a bit she agreed that she should be able to do that but the question was, how many did I need. Trina constantly reminds me that my answer was, “oh not too many maybe 10 or 12.”

As God is my witness I thought that estimate was right. I went back to the online community and begin telling people about my plans and about Trina offering to make us each a custom lanyard. I set up a sign-up page online and asked everyone who was interested to sign up. At the end of the first day there were 25 people who planned on attending.

Obviously my estimate of 10 or 12 had suddenly doubled. I went back to Trina and apologized saying I had slightly underestimated but that the number should top out at around 25. Trina agreed and began making plans to create the lanyards. Within a week we had over 250 people sign up for the event and it became legendary. Trina not only made 250 custom lanyards but we also made lanyard cards, tags, and other things. That small gathering grew into three gigantic yearly events that people are still talking about a decade later.

As a result of that one small event Trina and I became an official 2002 Winter Olympics vendor selling lanyards in Salt Lake City. We’ve also sold lanyards to the National Football League as part of the Super Bowl and our lanyards have sold in national parks around the country. Don’t ask me how I still have no idea.

Today’s episode pales in comparison to the great lanyard debacle as it has come to be known in our household. During the recent goal setting exercise I committed to myself to walk 10,000 steps a day. Much like the lanyard thing, I didn’t really think that would be too difficult.

What I found out was that 10,000 are a lot of steps especially for someone who normally sits in front of a computer screen typing all day long. At the end of today I had just 1,000 steps well short of my goal. Instead of just shrugging it off I decided I would meet my goal even if it killed me.

I went to Trina and asked her if she wanted to walk with me. She asked where we were going and how long would we be. My response was, “oh not too far and it shouldn’t take us too long I just need to get some steps in.”

I have to say right here that after being married 30 years, part of the blame should go to Trina because she should know better than listen to me especially when I am estimating. Instead of a short 20-minute walk it turned into a 5.5-mile death march get to the 10,000 step goal.

By the end we were both exhausted but according to my FitBit we had walked about 11,000 steps putting my total at over 12,000 for the day. But at least we didn’t end up making 5,000 custom lanyards so I am getting better.


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  1. Exercise as Entertainment – Diet Day 42 - Jeff Blogs - [...] on Feb.23, 2012, under Exercise Normally Trina and I go walking every night but after the last Death March…

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