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Everything posted by DrFeelgood

  1. I rarely crossed paths with him, but I was saddened to hear of his passing. To honor Mr_Willes I'm getting back in to challenge mode. May his memory be a blessing. The only thing I drink anymore that isn't water is my weekly fruit smoothie, but I'll raise my glass with y'all. Six months to get ready for Squatmas.
  2. I wouldn't call it ideal, but surprisingly it hasn't been as bad as you might think. Knowing that something is going to cause pain doesn't just make it easy to avoid, it actually removes all desire to ever eat it again. I don't miss pizza or pasta or bread at all really. The biggest impact has been in the convenience realm--I simply don't eat out any more. That can be a little frustrating, but even then I generally prefer to cook and eat my food in my kitchen with only things I know I can trust (unless the kids have cross contaminated the butter or salt). Thanks, and me too! I was getting really tired of feeling poorly all the time and despairing of finding a competent medical pro to help me iron it out without costing me thousands of dollars and hundreds of hours. The bed front is unchanged still--I discovered what I think may be the major issue, and it's not the mattress size. MFG spends a lot more time in bed than I do, so her side has worn faster. As a result she hogs more of the middle at night. I think we'll be able to solve it with a new mattress, even though that has it's own kind of pain since I spent a crapload (both money and time researching) on the one we have now and I still love it. Hopefully we'll find a suitable replacement since that company went out of business. Hi Snarky, I'm definitely feeling better and really starting to dial in a sustainable new groove. ________________________________ Apologies for the hit-and-run update mode I seem to be imposing on y'all. I have been trying to get back to a more regular participation status, and I certainly don't mean to drop out the way I seem to recently. I check in from time to time to see how you're doing, and I usually don't have much to contribute. My energies are more focused on music and building musical things lately, and that's only when I can get a break from hubby and dad responsibilities. Raising teenagers is pretty demanding; even though each of my kids is relatively low-key having four of them at once means there's almost always something that needs my attention. And MFG has been dealing with some health stuff, so I've been taking up some of her work as well to help with treatment and recovery. She's well on the mend now and it looks like she'll be nearly 100% again soon. In terms of updates there isn't much to add. I've gotten very good at planning my food and have had a lot of success staying 100% gluten-free. MFG went away for a couple of weeks to vacation with her sister, and I took those days off work to have a bit of a staycation with Brick and Butch (and the dog and cat). Mostly I just held down the homestead getting younglings to and from their summer dealings, keeping the household in order, and preparing delicious meals. In total I lost nearly 5 pounds over the last two weeks finally cracking the 240 line again. And due to slimming I was able to switch out all my size-38 jeans for the 36s on reserve in the closet. The old 34s are in deeper storage, but I hope to be digging those out by the end of summer. The 32s are long gone--they all went to the boys who have now worn them out and outgrown them. If I can ever get back down to a 32 then I'll happily go buy new ones. Still not doing much for exercise. I try to hit the driving range at least once a week to keep working on my golf swing, but I haven't played a round yet this season. I've been spending more time in my shop now that the weather is suitable. I'm nearly finished with a little guitar amp project that's been waiting for me to solve it, then I'm going to get on with a couple of new guitar builds and see how economical it might be to do more than one at a time. I did end up finding some new shoes that seem to be helping with my knees, and that makes it a little easier to spend more time on my feet. Backyard deck is on hold until (if?) lumber prices come back down, and if they don't then I think I'm just going to suck it all the way up and build a shed back there instead of a deck. That'll at least free up my garage a bit. I'm still doing music and captaining the sound team at church. The song we recorded got made in to a music video, on which I played guitar. It released a couple weeks ago on most of the major music platforms. Those of y'all that follow my socials may have noticed the updated profile photo that I snipped from one of the music video segments. Figured I put all the effort in to looking good for the video shoot so I might as well seize the opportunity. I still game most nights, but it's way less than it used to be--usually just a few Rocket League matches then a handful of chess puzzles before bed. Life continues, and I continue to be blessed in it.
  3. Alright, 7 months off, time for an update: Since last August I've been focused on figuring out my digestive system and its new (lack of) tolerances. I started by eliminating things and then slowly reintroducing stuff to see what's what. It's a slow process since every poor response to a reintroduction requires a recovery period before the next thing can be tried. Currently I am completely excluding wheat and beans, and I've managed to not only get rid of sodas but apparently my desire for them as well. It's easy to not miss things that are associated more with pain than with pleasure. This seems to be a pretty smooth spot, though I still occasionally have a few issues I can't quite iron out. Mostly they seem to follow MFG's well-meaning efforts at finding gluten-free alternatives, and I suspect that the grains in those alternatives aren't necessarily doing me any favors. I don't want them in the first place: they're unpleasant and unnecessary. I appreciate the thoughtfulness and the attempt to include me in the regular family meals. I'm certainly not going to impose my restrictions on everyone else in the house, but I need to find a setup that works for me. I'd prefer to get my starches from potatoes, rice, and corn; whereas her wheelhouse is more pasta and bread. We're working on it. The family went to visit grandma for spring break, and while I was home alone I got to eat my way. It was much better. The need to be totally conscientious of my food has recently yielded an unexpected side benefit: I'm losing weight again and doing so relatively easily as I've retooled my diet toward something sustainable. It's taken several months to get to this point, and I'm not sure it'll actually last, but for now I'm very content with eating fewer foods in smaller quantities while focusing on maximizing my nutrition--getting plenty of fiber and micronutrients from as many freggies as I can. The other deliberate thing I've done is to slowly reduce my ice cream habit. I started by reducing it from nightly to just on the weekends (Fri-Sat-Sun) and not keeping any in the house. Now I've got it down to just Sunday evening when I eat as much as I want, and it's no problem to have a partial carton in the freezer. I've also been pretty successful at paring down my snacking while at work. It used to be pretty common for me to eat a big bag of chips and a large candy bar with a soda after lunch, easily adding 1000 empty kcal to my day; and I'd do that several times a week. Now I make a point of taking a daily drive over to the mini-mart for a large ice water and a single small candy bar every afternoon. It's a treat that I can easily keep going for the foreseeable future. Physically I'm not really working on anything other than my golf swing, and the main emphasis there is to stop trying to be strong and fast. Instead I'm concentrating on being smooth and relaxed--nothing at all like what I'm used to when it comes to sports physicality. But I'm still enjoying the process of improving and hoping to play more rounds this year than last. The old creaky body continues to deteriorate out from under me, and I don't think these are things I can exercise away. Toughest right now is trying to find shoes that don't destroy my knees, but that's a current goal. Another short-term goal is to upgrade from a queen bed to a king--I slept way better when MFG was out of town, which I attribute to three things: 1) I wasn't huddled over as close to "my" edge as possible, 2) I wasn't clutching my blanket all around me to keep her from stealing it in her sleep, and 3) I wasn't being disrupted throughout the night by her restlessness. I suppose a bonus 4) could be that she also took the dog who sleeps crated in our room and periodically disturbs my sleep with noise. And I do still want to finish building the deck in our backyard so I have a place to do bodyweight stuff or yoga or stretching or whatever. Lifewise I'm pretty much just chilling. Winter kept me out of my workshop, but now that it's warming up I'll try to do another guitar build this year. The kids are growing fast and needing more of my time--most recently I helped Bubbles file her taxes. Household duties and the paying job are same as they ever were. MFG recently quit her self-employed job to refocus on homeschooling the Minions who had gotten a little slack while she was working, so we're retooling finances again. I've been plenty busy with church and music--our worship band recently recorded one of our original songs and I got to play electric guitar on that. It's nothing fancy, but I had fun with it, and the first cut of the Master made good use of my contribution. Mostly I've been deliberately keeping my circle pretty small while the world is busy losing its mind. I think that brings my log up to date, and with that I'm going to try and piece together some goals into a post for the upcoming challenge--hope to have it up by Friday.
  4. Aw man, we're already over halfway and I haven't even started. This feels an awful lot like a high-school term paper assignment now.
  5. Thursday was a good day. It rained pretty heavily all morning, and I managed to find the deepest spot when I stepped off the curb to cross the road to my office, but apart from soggy toes for an hour or so the workday was exceedingly straightforward. I drank my customary morning Dr Pepper and had leftover chicken tikka masala for lunch. I forgot to pack some cookies, so that was a little disappointing. I talked myself out of making a snack run and nursed a big glass of water through the afternoon instead. When I got home I snacked on the last 3 cookies before dinner, then MFG served up an Instant-Pot roast chicken with carrots, potatoes, and a side salad which was excellent. Her gravy game is really stepping up lately. For dessert I has a small bowl of ice cream while surfing the net to learn more about guitar amps, which was how I spent the rest of my day. The next project on my workbench is going to be a custom amp and speaker cabinet--should be fun! Walmart has so thoroughly screwed the pooch on the golf balls thing that I'm writing it off. I now have one box of the correct balls, one box of close-but-not-quite-the-same balls, one credit-card charge for the correct initial amount, and one refund of that charge in the full amount. I don't know how they make money with all the incompetence.
  6. Wednesday was a great day. I got to work a little late but raring to go, and I was able to knock out a few pressing things right away. That cleared me to take a half day and go home at lunch, grabbing a burger at Carl's Jr in the process. I settled in at home for a little while, then I laid claim to the kitchen and started preps for hosting. First I baked 5 dozen chocolate-chip cookies (my "chewy" variant with toasted pecans, so good!), then I made a huge pot of chicken tikka-masala and a less-huge pot of Jasmine rice to serve it over. MFG also made some Kraft Mac'n'Cheese for kids who might prefer something milder. New Friends came over just as everything was ready and we all had a nice meal together, then we hung out for while checking out my guitars (especially the recent builds) and guns and shop tools and stuff. They left (with a bonus dozen cookies for the road) a little after 8, but not before bestowing a few really cool and generous gifts that I'm looking forward to using in future projects. I cleaned the kitchen and spent the rest of the evening relaxing before heading to bed on time. As much as I enjoy my introvert side it's really nice to indulge my social side every now and then too. Sometimes I forget that I'm kind-of a people person.
  7. Tuesday was a good day. Being back in the office let me make some faster (and much-needed) progress on a few projects, and staying busy helped me keep on track with my eating plan. The morning was fueled by a single Dr Pepper, then lunch was a leftover portion of my chicken tikka masala from the freezer. I did a bunch of walking in the morning while surveying some buildings that are badly in need of repairs, but the afternoon was more sedentary. After work I headed over to the golf course and played a quick 9 holes (poorly) for exercise, then I drove home. MFG had cooked Greek chicken breast for dinner, so I ate all that was left with a simple cucumber-tomato salad and some mixed nuts. Bubbles surprised me with a Snickers (such a good daughter) that I shared with MFG. Some not-quite-last-minute social plans came through, so MFG and I ran out to procure some dinner supplies, and I spent the rest of the night doing food prep so we can host some friends for a little get together tonight. I haven't been this excited about social plans in a long time--probably since Tank's wedding. Edit to add: Walmart did mess up my order of golf balls (again), but I think they're finally going to get it right today. Fingers crossed!
  8. Can't say if it'll help you or not, but I find that sometimes I have hand pain when my neck and shoulders aren't getting along with each other. A few minutes each day spent loosening my shoulders and gently stretching my neck seems to improve things all the way down to my fingertips. Mainly I focus on using my lats to pull my shoulder blades down (almost as if I'm trying to make them touch my tailbone) to counteract my tendency to hunch. Hope you're back to 100% soon. :)
  9. Monday was a good day. I woke up on time and began teleworking right away. By mid-morning I'd been directed to get tested again so that I'd be clear to return to work in person. It took some convincing at the post clinic, but I finally got the medical personnel there to administer an antigen test and sign the clearance note. Then I went home to finish teleworking, and on the way I picked up some chicken tendies to split with MFG for lunch. After work I went for a haircut then an argument with Walmart about the wrong golf balls they kept trying to give me--we'll see later today if they end up bringing the wrong ones to my house again. MFG made tacos for dinner, and I added a nice bowl of rocky road later in the evening while surfing my Youtube subscriptions. The rest of the night was super chill, and I finally headed off to sleep around midnight. Back to working full-time in the office again this morning. I'm glad to finally be off that infernal laptop.
  10. Sunday was a good day. I woke up early and made my customary drive-thru of McD's on the way to church for services. The morning was filled with good music and a fine sermon (both times) on Psalms 119. Afterward I got to chat with a new friend for a while, then I headed home and had a very mellow day relaxing on the couch. I helped MFG with dinner by cooking some pork chops on my backyard griddle, then the kids came home from visiting their friends and we all sat down to a nice family meal. More slothing with videos in the evening and up until bedtime, then lights out and a good night's sleep.
  11. Thanks, it's nice to be back among the living. _______________________________ Yesterday was a pretty dang good day. I got to sleep way in until around 10, and when I did finally roll out of bed I had absolutely zero obligations. I slow-played the first half hour or so then got dressed and headed to the golf course for a couple hours of practice on the driving range and chipping/putting green. Managed to dial in a couple of swing changes and hit some good shots, then when I was nice and tired I drove through Chick-fil-A to pick up lunch for me and MFG (and to say hi to Bubbles, who works there). I spent the rest of the day lounging around the house, watching videos, playing guitars, and just generally being a sloth. It was marvelous. For dinner MFG broke in her new Instant Pot with a beef roast and some carrots and potatoes, and then I had a bit of ice cream for dessert. The evening gave way to night with more slothing, then I called it and headed to bed since I had an early morning ahead of me. Weight check this morning was 237.5 for a loss of over 2 pounds on the week and a new low for 2021 (actually lowest since May 2019). I'm perfectly content to keep that ball rolling, and while I'll miss the easy assist of rampant illness I have no desire to return to feeling sick. I'll have to go back to doing this the hard way. Hopefully I'll get a couple rounds of golf in this week to get some exercise (and fun), which should in turn help me be more mindful of my eating.
  12. Alright, I think I've finally turned the corner. As abruptly as this thing sat on my face, it now seems to be moving on just the same. Anyway, today was a good day. I was able to telework the full day without needing to stop and rest, my appetite was something closer to normal without any stomach aches, and I only had the faintest of chills at any point. I felt good enough that I took another test after dinner and it was negative, so that cleared me to go to band practice tonight and run the sound booth for the worship team--still keeping distant from everyone else out of an abundance of caution. I also managed to finish my guitar project after work this afternoon with the replacement part that arrived in today's mail. And after coming home from band practice I binged the final episodes of The Mandalorian along with a small bowl of butter pecan Blue Bell and then some aged cheddar as a later snack. As of this morning I'm down to 236 pounds and looking slimmer than I have in quite a while, so I'll try to hang on to a bit of post-illness motivation and not eat all that weight right back on. Hope to ride the recovery train through the coming weekend, then next week (weather and wellness permitting) I'll get around to starting the deck. But first some golf will definitely be happening.
  13. I'm trying to focus on the positives. ___________________________ Today's spin on the Wheel-of-Symptoms landed on constant sweating and body temperature fluctuations. Seriously, what the frick? I've been making myself eat once per day. Yesterday I was actually craving beef and onions, so I acquired a double quarter pounder. Today I made ramen and poached a couple of eggs in it. Gotta feed the recovery, amiright? Ah, who am I kidding, I have no idea what I'm doing. Just trying to keep my fluids and nutrients up while I wait this thing out.
  14. Telework, sleep, watch TV, rinse, repeat. I'm losing my mind. At least the eyeball pressure has mostly abated, but I get super exhausted really quick and can't do much more than an hour or so of work at a time before needing to lie down again. This is a really weird bug--every single person in my household had wildly different symptoms and recovery trajectories. Last night I managed to eat some pasta for dinner, then I started watching The Mandalorian (along with a decent amount of rocky road Blue Bell). I'm looking forward to continuing the series tonight, though my appetite is zilch today. I'm not even sure I know who I am anymore without my stomach to guide me through life.
  15. They've been a feature of my life for several days. ___________________________ Ugh, I can't wait to be over this thing. I'm starting to lose my mind being stuck at home and unable to do anything. On the plus side (for weight loss purposes) I still have very little appetite. Makes it easier to just eat for nutrition instead of enjoyment.
  16. Week 1 Update: I've lost over 4 pounds this week to finally crack back under the 240 mark, and I'd estimate that only half of that is covid losses since my appetite didn't really taper off until late in the week. The conscientiousness I paid earlier surely accounted for some good reductions. Gonna try to keep it going. The bodyweight exercises I may eventually end up doing will only be easier if I have less of it. Still on the mend; eyeballs are tender and appetite comes and goes, but I'm doing just fine. Probably going to try for another mega nap today.
  17. Today was a tale of three Saturdays, all of them good. First part was working on guitar stuff and not eating anything because my appetite was still gone. I made myself eat a small bowl of corn flakes for lunch with a couple of apple slices just for the nutrition, but it was also pretty pleasant and it settled well enough. I added some Gatorade for the electrolytes and hydration. Second part happened after lunch, a massive "nap" that lasted until dinner. Holy pants was that refreshing. I haven't napped like that in ages, and it was the best. Third part was after my nap--my appetite seemed to have recovered slightly, so I ate some leftover pulled-pork tikka masala that I made yesterday and had a small bowl of rocky road ice cream afterward. I watched videos with the kids for the evening, then I did a little more guitar stuff with my oldest son. When the kids were all in bed I played some Rocket League, and now I'm off to bed myself--with any luck to resume my afternoon dreams that featured pizzas and cheesecakes (and a whole bunch of other weirdness that I can't remember, but who cares?).
  18. Yeah, not fun for sure. I have a strong familiarity with my particular pain triangle (sinus-eyeball-upper jaw) from experience with past sinus infections. Fortunately this one seems to respond well to ibuprofen, which gave some relief while I was streaming The Tomorrow War (not bad); then I got a good night's sleep. I feel much better today--not 100%, and I have very little appetite--but much better. Thanks! ________________________________________ At one point I was starting to think that I had ruined myself by shoving whatever minor infection I may have had further up in to my brainpan making things worse. Granted, I'm no doctor. The pain was tough enough, but the mental anguish of going from "Perfectly fine, I got this" to "Holy crap, am I going to die?" in less than 8 hours was also pretty taxing. I made the right call powering down last night. And the movie was fun. I made some more progress on the guitar project, but I've run across a snag: a defective part that I'm working with the supplier to get replaced as soon as possible. But that should be the last thing, and all else up to that point is ready to go. I've even been able to play it a bit, and it sounds pretty good! Seems likely that when I get a working part and finish putting it all together it'll sound just the way I'm hoping. It certainly looks and feels great. Not sure it was worth the effort to rebuild since I probably could have just made an all new one, but that's how we learn. Now when I make the next one it'll have three builds worth of experience behind it instead of just two.
  19. Thanks, so far it has been. I just wish I'd gotten it right away when we started quarantining 2 weeks ago 'cause I'd be done by now. I like my house, but I'm starting to hate being here. ______________________________________ Today is an okay day. Telework, guitar stuff, cooking dinner, reasonably smart food choices. It's all pretty hum-drum. The rough part has been my sinuses are super-pissed since swabbing myself yesterday for the covid test. The pressure behind my eyes is making me want to punch everything. So I'm calling it a day and curling up with my tablet. Here's to a better weekend.
  20. Update, positive. Like super positive--didn't even take the full waiting period and showed up with a big fat line. That's good. Doesn't seem to have too much effect on me and now I can get clear of this thing sooner.
  21. It certainly wasn't, and it was a great excuse opportunity to finish off the last of my caramel sauce. Bubbles is a good baker. _____________________________________ Third verse, same as the first; And much like the second only not quite as terse. These work-from-home days kinda all run together. But it's good--I've had some consistency. Eat smart, do job-stuff, make progress on guitar project (getting very close now), watch movies with the kids (today's edition pending)... I've still had almost nothing in the way of symptoms, just a mild little cough on Monday/Tuesday that could just as easily be explained by working in my shop. At this point the entire household has had it (all the kids are clear now, MFG is feeling much better but still positive), so I can't imagine that I'm still actually avoiding it. I'm going to take a test and see if it pops positive. I hope it does--for one that would make it less likely for me to catch it in the near future, and for two it would give me a definitive timeline for getting clear myself. With no symptoms and no positive test I would still have to isolate for 14 more days after MFG has fully recovered, which would keep me stuck at home until Aug 23. Frick that. I won't leave the house or go back to the office without a negative test, but I'd sure like to be able to get to that point much sooner. Backyard platform is on my mind, perhaps this weekend I'll break out my reciprocating saw and angle grinder to begin prepping the frame for a treated lumber deck.
  22. Another good day, similar to yesterday but with an extra brownie.
  23. Thanks, I edited the whole thing in a day and found some free tracks to throw behind it at the last minute. My playing is just a few seconds near the end, but I think that one sounds decent, too. The shop is just a corner of my garage, but it suits me. Naturally I'd love to have more tools and more space. ______________________________________ Today was a good day. I stuck to just one Dr Pepper this morning and ate a couple of sausages for breakfast. I finished off a bag of peanut-butter m&ms as a mid-morning snack, then lunch was leftover chicken fried rice. I had some nuts and cheese for an afternoon snack, then I made dinner--pot roast, mashed potatoes, and braised carrots with gravy. Bubbles made a pan of brownies for dessert while we were watching a family movie (the original Mary Poppins, which my sons had never seen) so I whipped up a quick caramel sauce and toasted some pecans to make them turtle brownies for whomever wanted it. No counting, but I feel good about it. Didn't do much in the way of movement--just a bit of light stretching--and haven't even thought about the platform today. We're still in the midst of this covid nonsense, and my status could be almost anything at the moment. I spent my after-work time cooking, cleaning, and making a bit of progress on the latest guitar project, which I hope to have assembled and ready to play by this coming weekend--not for any special reason, just because I do my best work when I give myself a timeline.
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