Cruise Day Countdown – Staying Motivated

15 Mar

It is just over a week since Chelsea and I started our exercise program. Both of us are doing so much better after such a short time that I can’t wait to see how we’re doing in a month. During that first class I thought I would never get through it. Never get through it, and maybe pass out along the way. Don’t tell our trainer this, but yesterday’s class was almost easy, in comparison anyhow. After just one week, I feel stronger, have more energy, and I’m once again excited about life.

I haven’t bothered to re-take our measurements yet, and I still don’t own a scale, I doubt there would be much change, but I do know I’m firming up, I feel it, and my clothes fit better already. Unfortunately the program that we’re doing right now is only two weeks long. We have a two week gym membership to try out to fill the last two weeks before vacation, so we can see which we like better. Having started now though, I think we will be joining back up when we get back from vacation, hopefully for an eight week program now that we know we can do it.

The exercise is going well, the diet not so much. That’s not to say I’m running out for McDonald’s every day or anything like that but I’m not having the easiest of times staying away from things that I know are not good for me. I do really well during the day sticking to fruits, veg, and healthy carbs, but come night time everything seems to go out the window. One of the biggest problems I see is time. With the program I’m not getting home until 7pm, or sometimes even later. By that point the last thing I want to do is spend an hour or more in the kitchen, and picking up the phone looks fantastic in comparison. This week I will be focusing on dinners, and finding quick, and healthy ways to stay on track. Do you have any recipes to pass on?

We picked up our return tickets this week and had the same problem as the first one’s we purchased. When I looked originally the tickets were $245. By the time I was ready to buy them, a week later, they had gone through the roof. We figured out that by staying in Florida for three extra days we would save hundreds of dollars, that includes the extra hotel, living, and off work expenses believe it or not! It’s something to think about if you are booking your vacation, tally up costs for hotel, food, and time off work, and compare it against flight costs to see if you might save money by staying a bit longer. More vacation, less money, who would have thought?

Marigot open market, St Maarten

Both of us are getting over the top excited by our new adventures coming up. I’m also a little nervous though. I know the nerves come from the fact that I’ve never done anything like this before, so I want to educate myself as much as possible. I’ve been reading like crazy but I would love to hear from you. Have you ever been on a cruise? What do we need to know? Any tips? We will be visiting Fort Lauderdale, Nassau, Bahamas, Charlotte Amalie, St Thomas, VI, and Philipsburgh, St Martin/St Maarten. Have you been to any of these places? What are some of the ‘must see’ attractions?


Coral World, St Thomas, USVI

From what I have seen so far, here are some of the activities I would love to see/do. In St Thomas there is a beautiful underwater observatory. It is called ‘Coral World.’ It’s a building that goes right out into the ocean, and underwater so you can see what’s happening under there without getting wet. They offer many exhibits like a stingray pool, shark watching, and turtle pool amongst many other things. In St Maarten, we are hoping to take an Island tour. The tour is done by a local and showcases the highlights of the Island such as a tour of Oyster Pond, a beautiful marina in between the two sides of St Martin/St Maarten, a stop at one of the best beaches on the Island, a tour of the open market on the French side, shopping, and a stop at the local beach bar. I really like the idea of being able to see everything without the possibility of getting lost, however, I’m an independent person so I’m not sure how I’m going to like being told what to do, when I have to leave etc. We’ll see how it goes.

Blue Lagoon Island, Nassau

Lastly there is Nassau, this is the one I’m having the most trouble with. It seems that Nassau has been taken over by the huge money making ‘Atlantis.’ When you look at pics of the Island, that’s pretty much all you see. Even though I’ve never travelled, I know I’m not a typical ‘tourist.’ The idea of being a tourist with all the trappings just doesn’t appeal to me. I want to see the country for what it really is, I would love a glimpse of the locals, and their day to day lives, not a show that’s put on for the entertainment of visitors. As I looked for things to do on Nassau, it’s really not easy to find stuff that does not include Atlantis. While I was looking around, and before I did a bit of research, I attempted to book a dolphin ‘encounter.’ Turns out that Atlantis has a lock on any bookings such as this from the cruise ship, as I tried to book through another place and was told they could not accept our reservation and I would have to go to Atlantis, huh, made me want to spend time there even less. After reading more about swimming with dolphins, I don’t want to do it at all, but that is a discussion for another post. So, we’ve decided that since we will only be there for 5 hours we’re going to hit the beaches in Nassau, seems it’s the only thing we can do that doesn’t involve the gaudy resort. There is a beautiful beach on Nassau called the ‘Blue Lagoon’ I have no idea if this is the actual Blue Lagoon, but it’s where we’ll be.

Spices, Marigot open market, St Maarten.



Posted by on March 15, 2012 in Health and Beauty


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9 responses to “Cruise Day Countdown – Staying Motivated

  1. Judy Ham

    March 15, 2012 at 5:08 pm

    The pictures look awesome! I haven’t done nearly enough travels to the Caribbean. My trips there have been limited to Cancun, Playa Del Carmen, Mayan Riviera, and Cozumel. Mexico is so much cheaper! I’d love to venture east to the places you’re going. So jealous!
    I never attempted a cruise and probably won’t ever as I get really sick even on ferry rides. Just in case, pack some dramamine. A friend of mine was sick for 3 whole days on her week long cruise.

    As for recipes, I personally love roasting things in the oven. I usually start it off on the stove and finish in the oven. Have you ever tried roasted brussel sprouts? They are sweet and delicious. When trying to eat healthier though, I cut back on a lot of carbs post work out. It’s best to carb up before to give you that extra bit of energy during the exercise session and then to eat a protein/fiber and light carb meal afterwards. Try to get your carbs from fiber heavy foods like broccoli, green beans, carrots, squash etc.. Stay away if you can from potatoes, bread, and pastas post workout. This is what usually works for me and my hubby. I typically don’t enjoy salads and like heartier meals but adding a small side salad helps a bunch in getting the extra fiber to get you full quicker. Also, try checking out some of your local ethnic markets. You’d be surprised to find how much cheaper and fresher a lot of the produce is. Trying out different veggies will keep you from getting bored. I personally love baby bok choys. You can stir fry them, add them to soups to give the soup a buttery flavor, and even roast them.

    A good tip to keep you from going crazy w/ carb filled snacks is to boil some eggs and keep them in the fridge so you can grab them as a quick snack when you are too hungry to wait for dinner. It will keep you full longer and provide the protein you need post workout to repair your muscles. If you get bored w/ regular boiled eggs like I did, you can start experimenting w/ deviled eggs recipes by adding plain nonfat yogurt or sour cream, a tiny splash of white wine vinegar, and mustard and whatever spices you prefer. Mayo tastes best but sour cream and yogurt aren’t bad substitutes, plus you get the benefits of the good bacteria in yogurt. I like adding a bit of onion powder, coriander seed powder, garlic powder, black pepper, and a hint of hungarian paprika. I also love to snack on cocktail shrimp when I’m really sick of eggs. You can grab a bag of frozen cooked shrimp and spice them up by dumping them into a chicken or veggie broth filled w/ spices of your choice. I grab some cajun mix and add a bunch of extra lime, garlic, and habenero powder to make it really spicy. Cook til warmed through and then drain the shrimp. You can keep the shrimp and broth and eat as a soup by adding veggies if you want or just eat the shrimp by itself. I tend to overspice the broth so the shrimp can grab the flavors so I usually add a bunch of extra water and chicken/vegetable stock to dilute for a soup.

    If you’re struggling w/ time for dinner, I suggest an investment in a pressure cooker. They are a life saver when you want a good “slow cooked” meal that was done in less than half the time. If you already own one, now would be a good time to make itself useful. Or you can go the other route and start your dinner before you leave for your class and it will be ready when you get back by using the traditional slow cooker.

    • Adventures in Miscellany

      March 16, 2012 at 5:38 am

      Wow, thank you for all the wonderful tips Judy! I don’t have a pressure cooker, but I do have a slow cooker, and I should darned well start to use it! You’re right, in that it’s planning that I’m obviously lacking right now. If I just put a little time into it at the beginning of the day things won’t fall apart by the end of it.

      I’ve heard that some get sea sick, and I so hope that’s not me. Isn’t it rare on a giant cruise ship?

  2. Judy Ham

    March 16, 2012 at 11:57 am

    You’re welcome! Oh and don’t forget the grill either. You can pre-marinate the meats and veggies and have your guys cook it up outside.

    I don’t really know how common it is but if you’re not the type to get car sick, you’re most likely going to be ok. Yes I’ve heard that the bigger the boat, the less it rocks but some people’s bodies just know it’s not balanced. That tricky inner ear thing. I wouldn’t worry about it if I were you but have things ready, just in case since the drugs will probably be more expensive on the ship. There’s some ppl who swear by that wrist band, or ginger and green apples.

    • Adventures in Miscellany

      March 17, 2012 at 6:35 am

      So true Judy, and now that you mention it, I think I will pack a full ket of meds, just in case. I can’t even imagine the cost of that kind of thing on a boat in the middle of the ocean!

      BBQ is also a great idea, it’s been absolutely gorgeous here for March in Calgary, I should take advantage!

  3. mamawee (ashley picco)

    March 17, 2012 at 9:01 am

    those pictures do look beautiful!

    1 of the biggest things for me with cooking, is doing the prep work ahead of time. I find that if all I have to do is throw it in the oven, it works great.

    I take chicken breasts, throw them in a ziplock bag with bbq sauce, sweet and sour sauce, or teriyaki sauce and leave them all day. Then I throw them in the oven to cook. Veggies, I generally just steam them for 5-7 minutes right before the chicken is done…..(or a bagged salad works too, then you just need to wash it) and rice only takes about 10 minutes also.

    good luck – and good for you for doing great with the exercise!


  4. Katrina Brady (@sweetmamabrady)

    March 17, 2012 at 2:29 pm

    I also have the problem of wanting to snack after supper. I do great during the day and I menu plan dinner. I’m currently doing a 10 min ab workout every night and I keep a big glass of water beside me which I sip if I feel hungry. I also try to have a fruit snack around 8 (watermelon is great because it’s low cal and very filling). Sometimes though, you just have to go for the cheesies lol SASS

  5. Shari Goss (@knitwitshair)

    March 18, 2012 at 9:00 am

    I think the key is to focus on your successes, and keep working on the areas where you are struggling! Keep up the awesome work!


  6. Eva | Little Cool Toys

    March 19, 2012 at 9:56 am

    Sure seems like you’re on the right track! and a nice bonus waiting for you 🙂 Got some great tips for the meal planning – I would have suggested some nice and easy pasta dishes filled with vegetables, but I can see that it’s not the best idea post workout.

    I have traveled a lot, though never been on a cruise. I think you’re doing great preparing a bit in advance to have an idea of things you would like to do, but keeping an open mind to adventures that might turn up once you’re at your destination. Sometimes a stroll through a little town or market to get a feel of the local atmosphere can be more inspiring than some tour or turist attraction. A nice walk or a couple of hours on the beach on Nassau sounds like the right thing. Hope you’ll have a wonderful cruise!

    Great tip about the tickets – hard to believe that a couple of extra days would be an advantage, very nice find 🙂

    SASS –


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