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Everything posted by chemgeek

  1. Asthma flare-up because dogs (and probably stress if I am frank). Am practically 100% sure it's asthma (I am also hivey and suffering dermatographia, plus fully vaccinated, plus low rates in my region and no exposure in the past 2 weeks). BUT coughing and wheezing when there's a respiratory disease circulating is not good so I am going to be considerate and stay home. Not a bad thing tbh. I need a quiet evening to myself & my partner's game night is tonight so time to have some decompression time to myself.
  2. Dad's surgery went well and he's past the biggest danger zone so yay. I am Le Tired. I should have taken Monday too so I would have a day to relax before I got back into it but at least labor Day is coming up
  3. What I wound up doing Tuesday night was taking a muscle relaxer and going to sleep - what I can do sometimes is get into a cycle where pain makes me tense which makes the back spasm which makes me feel more pain and cycle. I am especially prone to this when I am tenser than usual due to stress (and my father going in for major surgery and me needing to visit a town where the people made my life hell for 12 years is basically the definition of stress). I'd also been having some other psychosomatic ailments (increased migraines and tension headaches) over the past weeks, so I knew I was feeling my stress level in my body a bit. Because of all that I thought that might be what was happening - so I figured if I take a muscle relaxer that will interrupt the spasm and a good night's sleep will release some of the stress. I gave it a go and woke up feeling MUCH better. Doctor's visit averted (not that I am one of those avoid doctors at all costs types but more I like to have exhausted all my knowledge and options before I bring in a doctor to it). Not back to 100% (because it seems some of it WAS a physical injury) but getting there. Back to my normal activities and only really taking it easy on the heavy lifting right now, hoping to get back to lifting very heavy things in a week or two. Because of stress as well I find myself falling back on old habits (mainly not eating much all day and then eating a huge amount in the evening - for me this isn't a healthy pattern but rather the disordered eating I was raised in. For that reason this week my mission is to 1, eat enough food (at least 1500cal per day) and 2, eat regularly. And again my mind is mildly getting blown by how much food is actually in an average healthy meal. Growing up in a disordered eating household my mental portion sizes are ally screwy so every now and again I have to force myself to measure everything out to reinforce good portions. Although generally their meals are fairly calorie dense, my HelloFresh subscription is being useful for me in recalibrating what a "normal" portion looks like. I just need to remember to select meals that don't come with 4 standard servings of cheese, since I have noticed they include at least one per week if I let them choose and a 1000cal meal really doesn't fit my macros, plus all that cheese turns my esophagus into a ring of fire. XD OTOH when I forget I do still cook and eat it because a single meal won't throw me off that bad, for one, and it's a good challenge to my brain garbage around eating and food, for two. For me healthy eating is kind of a tight rope walk between over-restriction on one side (my family's food habits) and overeating on the other (my own reaction to my family's food habits). So if I never let myself indulge, I am setting myself up either to be back to restricting myself to the bare minimum recommended for my height and weight if I was sedentary (and feeling cold and tired and miserable constantly) or to break and have a huge binge (or both. Probably both if I am frank). On the theme of challenging brain garbage: I made some home made granola (granola was basically verboten growing up owing to calorie density) and was gifted blueberries from a friend's garden, so that's been my breakfast today, with some milk.
  4. First movie outing since the pandemic started. Saw space jam: A New Legacy. Basically exactly what I thought it would be, but not as lazy as I had worried. My one complaint is it didn't seem to be able to decide if it wanted to be goofy cartoon or heartwarming family flick and because of that it was incoherent narratively a bit. On the other hand, it's a goofy reboot of one of the goofiest concepts I have ever seen so maybe coherent narrative is too much to ask? Don Cheadle was the highlight of the film for me. He was basically the one actor who seemed to find the right balance and was genuinely equal parts funny and menacing as the AI. Popcorn and movie snacks were my supper, but it fit my macros so I am okay with this. Today I am having a chia and wheat germ breakfast bowl. Back is still fairly tweaked so I might need to make a doctor's appointment if it's not better soon since my old physio exercises don't seem to be helping quickly (tho I am feeling considerably better than Friday, it's still unhappy and certain moves pinch and my SI joint is painful. I am getting sciatica again and it's pretty obnoxious. Anyway I guess I will call the doctor if it continues to stall out.
  5. Annnd I tweaked my back. Dangit. So new mission: get back into good shape in time for the visit.
  6. I'm back. My big challenge for this month: my father is getting surgery later this month, and like me he won't take it easy when his pain is fully controlled unless ppl make him and my mom isn't physically able to do a lot of the stuff he would try to do and destroy himself attempting so to keep him from doing it she would try and probably hurt herself so I have decided to visit for a week to at least be around until his opiates run out and his body is acting as the limiter of his impulsiveness (I get it from him). I am able to do most of the stuff he could hurt himself trying to do and my sibling and their spouse live close enough to handle taking the hay in, which I can't do if I want to be able to breathe. My goal there is to basically take a load off my mother at least until my father is recovered enough to be a bit more self sufficient and on less heavy duty drugs so he doesn't get over confident. On the health front: I currently working out 5-6x per week, goal is to continue that and also try to break this dang plateau (I have been at 27lbs lost for almost 8 weeks now).
  7. Vacation went fantastic and then Life Happened (namely my father has a surgery that has been postponed for months finally scheduled for August) and I had my hands full scheduling a trip down for that and dealing with a few minor work emergencies. But I'm back! And I broke the 30lb mark.
  8. Sooo I fell off the face of the Earth last week because surprise! Roofing. Which is to say, I found out midday Friday our roofers were going to be around to replace the roof Monday. Roofing is done but not without discovering a family friend hired to insulate the roof 5 years ago snowed us and pocketed the cash, and discovering the leaky bastard skylight did a number on the roofing boards and a bunch needed replacing. And now I am out an additional 5.2K beyond budget (but like for 1, I can't not have a safe roof and the insulation will pay for itself in 2 years). Bastard skylight is gone and good friggin riddance to it (the previous owner was a damn fool to think a skylight is a good idea in a climate that can swing between -40 and +40C in a single year. There's not a sealant on this Earth that can tolerate that. Buuut I have had a LOT of stress in the past few months and am feeling rather like a bit of metal that's been bent back and forth a bunch. I am feeling cranky and rigid and brittle and argumentative. Too much strain has built up and I need to basically take some time to rest, rebuild & repair my brain. On the upside! I am nearing the 30lbs lost since Xmas benchmark. Challenge this time is to embrace opportunity to de-stress. I am not sure what it's going to look like (aside from defending my vacation in July jealously), but I will spend a few days figuring it out to start.
  9. Challenge is done. Would give myself a solid B+. Missed an A because I did backslide a bit from stress decompression when I got home.
  10. Congratulations on your successful challenge!
  11. Verdict : a good start but very definitely unfinished. So I had garlic, scallions, red chili pepper flakes and a bit of black pepper and salt for seasoning. Scallions should be sauteed in the pan or simmered with the oats next time or maybe substituted with chives - the raw scallions is a bit much for the otherwise delicate texture, but I really like the sharpness of scallions so idk... I could probably also do away with the black pepper. Next time I will probably half the amount of egg I add because I had to reheat the mixture after adding it and instead of a smooth custard I got scrambled eggs a bit. Alternatively, I could put the mix in a bowl in the water and coddle it? It also is just crying for an acidic element and is quite monochrome. Maybe sliced grape tomatoes to brighten up the color and flavor next time? Idk, it's not BAD but it could be better. There's something here, I just need to play around with it some more.
  12. So... Today for breakfast I am trying an experiment since I lost track of how much protein powder I had and now am out of it. I am in a hot breakfast mood but I have had a lot of scrambled eggs lately, the oil in fried eggs tends to give me heartburn, and I am out of bread, sooo... Gonna try making a healthy rice pudding type breakfast, but with oats. No idea how this is gonna turn out but I don't feel like waiting an hour for my long grain brown rice to cook when I can have oats in 15 minutes. So I will keep you posted. Hopefully this turns out tasty? If it does I will iterate a bit till I think I can't improve on it and post the recipe.
  13. Lunch was a beefy pasta with red lentils and tomato sauce for vitamin C. Dinner I had scrambled eggs and broccoli. Before martial arts I had a Kind bar and a banana.
  14. I am not supplementing currently because I don't know if or how iron supplements could interact with my existing meds (also because too much iron is as bad as too little). Until I can see the doctor I am going to rely on some chemistry in my cooking to help boost iron uptake - namely by consuming calcium rich foods separately from iron rich ones and making sure I pair a source of vitamin C with my sources of iron - both of which together can increase bioavailability of non-heme iron by about 70%. Today's breakfast is cranberry lemon protein oats. Vitamin C from the cranberries and lemon should help iron uptake, and no dairy should prevent irron from being out competed by calcium.
  15. So I took Sunday as a rest day because Saturday I was still feeling quite tired and run down. Today GMB in the morning wasn't fantastic but was OK. I'll take it. Scrambled eggs and coffee for breakfast this morning (don't have a huge appetite). Feeling mildly fatigued and my head has been foggy. I will chalk it up to donation and maybe think about arranging an appointment with the Dr to get my iron stores checked - 4 times in a row my hemoglobin levels have decreased on donation day, so that's a trend I don't like, and I was barely within the accepted range last time (literally was in by 1 g/L). Iron deficiency anaemia is a common complication of blood donation, but even more common is non-anemic iron deficiency (between a third and half of frequent donors get it, and I am a frequent donor. I have also failed a hematocrit screening once - a few years ago - but that increases your risk as well), and you can have low iron stores without failing the hemoglobin screening. I am not anemic, but a trend of decreasing hematocrit levels across the past 4 donations coupled with a slower than normal bounceback to normal energy levels makes me wonder if I am iron depleted. I should call my MD and ask for an iron test. Could be that the caloric restriction I have been doing to get back to a healthy body weight has imposed insufficient iron in my diet for a frequent blood donor. I will ask the question at least.
  16. Other ppl my have different recipes but I hate dishes so I usually try to get my stir fry as a one pot dish and this is how; 1. Heat Oil in pot till hot. 2. Add onions, cook till translucent 3. Remove onions, add and brown protein. 4. Remove protein, add onions and veg. 5. Stir fry veg until hot but a few minutes away from done (for broccoli, this is about 3 minutes). If you're cooking veg with different cook times, add long cooking stuff first (starchy veg like carrots & sweet potato, Fred) and fast cooking stuff like greens and broccoli 2-4 minutes later. 6. Add in protein & sauce, heat till hot and serve.
  17. See I have a detached bungalow & planned to get a huge grocery delivery the day before I got home and spend the entire time on my own property. So like basically very low risk. Buuuut we had a whole bunch of ppl who said they'd isolate and then didn't (like literally went to the store & work etc) so I think it was more if you're in a guarded quarantine facility, you CAN'T break protocol. OTOH the quarantine facility literally failed 4 of the 7 criteria the province set out for acceptable quarantine so... Yeah. TBH I think the goal was was mainly they wanted it to be punitive to discourage ppl from coming in the first place. Actual quarantine quality doesn't make sense because if that was the goal I would have been allowed to quarantine at home, but punishing people who had to or chose to travel financially and with 2 weeks solitary confinement sure does. With a side benefit that it's harder to break procedure if you're basically in a glorified cage. Anyway, workout this morning was very bad. Not sure if I am a bit anemic from the blood donation or what but just very tired and no endurance this morning.
  18. Ostensibly, but my partner is fully vaccinated and so the risk of him getting a bad case is basically nil (as in no recorded cases reported worldwide for fully vaxxed ppl in our age group) and of him getting anything at all is about 10% of that of a non protected person vs the variants I was exposed to. He also works from home so it's not like it'd be a major hardship for him.
  19. So, blood donation day was yesterday. Went grocery shopping after. Was super hot. Grocery shopping in 32°C heat (before humidex!) in a store still on spring AC settings (so it was about 27°C in the store because the AC settings couldn't fight the heat well) right after losing a pint of blood was not a good plan. Didn't pass out but definitely had to buy extra fluids and sit in the car before my tunnel vision let up and I felt safe to drive and then had to get my partner to bring the groceries in because I was too lightheaded. I do think it was a combination of being in work clothes in super hot weather and just having given blood and my known tendency to have vasovagal fainting episodes after needles. I am fine today, fortunately. Mildly annoyed because I did all the right things (ate salty snacks and drank lots of water beforehand and after ate and drank a sugary snack &drink to help replenish fluids, waited 15 minutes before leaving, got a good night's sleep and was well fed). But oh well. Body's gonna body.
  20. Yesterday was first martial arts back. Intense class. Felt it this morning in GMB.
  21. Nice hike yesterday. Today is a day of a WHOLE BUNCH of cleaning. Did the floors, dishes, laundry and I might give the kitchen a deep clean. Also noticed the wood laminate is starting to look worn, so it could possibly benefit from a wax. I will have to plan that later.
  22. MUAHAHAHA! I got back from my trip and despite isolation and take out and 2 weeks of room quarantine, I return home 5lbs lighter than I left! (5 lbs in 6 weeks - not shabby). I am now only about 15lbs from a healthy weight and about 30lbs from my goal weight.
  23. After thought: Hi Kettle, I'm Pot. (I've never had to recover from abdominal surgery but I am a person bthat thought running the literal day I got my cast off for a fractured and dislocated ankle was a good plan, and I gave myself a good ankle sprain to show for it, back when I was 16)
  24. Thing I will flag is I know a guy who turned a surgery wound (literally appendicitis by strange coincidence) into a hernia that required a second surgery because he jumped into training with our club sooner than the MD said he could. Please take your time with it and ask the doctor for permission before jumping into training. I don't want you to set your healing back.
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