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Gemma is satisfied with her care


Gemma

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8 minutes ago, Taddea Zhaan said:

 

seriously. who even BUYS canned spinach? what do they use it for?

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Sounds like you should be able to ramp up the learning curve quickly on meal prep, though! I definitely struggled a lot more earlier than I do now to get the quantities right on the first try. Sounds like you'll be an expert level kitchen badass by the end of the 3 months (or just super sick of meal prep).

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 Ballroom dancer, data nerd, calisthenics dabbler

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So, things are looking up. I lost a pound. :confused: 

I know, I know, I said I was going to trust the coach. All y'all told me I should trust the coach, and that a few hundred extra calories might not *really* be that much more than I was actually already eating, and eventually convinced me that the increased protein and probably increased performance would be worth it in any case (which is still 100% true)

 

And also, I know, I know, a pound is only a pound. But my body really takes its set points seriously, guys. I weighed the exact same weight for over ten years, and then did that big food increase last fall and gained 12 pounds in 3 months - and now I have weight the exact same for four months. Never-ever fluctuating more than six ounces, ever, despite hydration, holiday junk food, moderate caloric restriction in attempt to cut ... nothin'. So getting on the scale at the gym this morning and being a pound down after eating like a high school football player all week was just WEIRD. 

Liftingness is coming back pretty good. I can OHP again, whoo hoo! (only with the very extra-light bar, but still happy). I am really really tempted to push myself back to where I was before surgery, and a lot of smart people including my coach are really really advising me to keep taking it nice and slllooooowww, and I am listening to them and trying to not act like an idiot but I don't like it. Grrr. 
 

Today's iron data points:

Squats - are weird. Coach had me start off last week with high-bar squats, because my elbow couldn't really torque into low-bar position. Said surgically-altered elbow has healed enough now to get back into low-bar position, which I very much prefer.  My C-5 vertebra protrudes a LOT and it is super uncomfortable to have the bar pressing on it. But coach really likes my form better with high bar, so she is having me do this weird halfsies thing where I have the bar lower on my neck, but still with my thumbs around ... I dunno. She says my form looks better this way. I say the bar feels heavier. 

45# 2x5

55# 1x3

65# 1x2

70# 3x5

 

Press:

15# 1x5

25# 1x3

35# 3x5

 

RDL:

45# 1x5

55# 1x3

65# 3x5 - and this was just at the edge of being almost too much for my grip on the bad hand. I'll need to spend some quality time with that therapy silly-putty before I try to deadlift for reals!

 

Lat pulldowns:

60# 3x15 - I went for the volume on this because 60# felt pretty light, but I can only increase in increments of 15 and I was pretty sure that 75# would be too much on the elbow. I could feel it, but not in that "you are re-injuring me" way, more just that "whoa, I'm weak, it's been awhile, cut me some slack here" way. 

 

Overall, though, I'm pretty happy with it. I am healing faster than most people including coach, doctor, and phys. therapist expected me to, so that's pretty cool. 

 

GMkudA.gif

 

Other data points: 
Morning pages -  29 day streak

Frivolous spending  - just that one previously-noted book binge, of which I got the backordered part in yesterday's mail, leading to an all-evening reading bender.
51t7-mUvXnL._SX322_BO1,204,203,200_.jpg

 

 

Nutrition Transformation Challenge - I have fully complied all week so far - I'm saving my "cheat meal" for Sunday morning, because it is our church's 10th anniversary date and my friend's mom is baking a cake. And she baked said friend's wedding cake, and she is good at the baking of the cakes. 

 

Tomorrow will be another meal-prep-a-thon, I'm going to try and incorporate a few of my lessons-learned from last week.

  1. I'm pressure-cooking chicken thighs instead of breasts. Diced chicken breast meat, stored in rubbermaid and re-heated, is basically the same flavor and texture as three-year-old chewing gum scraped off the bottom of a library table. I am brining the chicken tonight. 
  2. I'm not putting blueberries in the egg 'n' oatmeal pancakes, it gets too soggy. I'll buy more containers if I have to in order to have separate portions of fruit. 
  3. I will be using 40 of my "discretionary" calories every day to account for having whole-milk cottage cheese, because 2% cottage cheese makes me sad and kinda bitchy. 
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“Writing is thinking. To write well is to think clearly. That's why it's so hard."

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Oh, and I almost forgot the best part! 

 

This was in today's mail:

 

 

 

It's an 11x17 print, and the shiny bits on my poorly lit phone photo are gold paint. This is GORGEOUS in person. And I have this thing - I never, ever, ever buy art. All of the art in my home was inherited from grandparents (mine and his), or his photography, or my drawings, or my stepmother's paintings. And one painting done by the same friend who entered me in this giveaway. So this is definitely something I would have never bought for myself, but it fits exactly right in with what I am going to do in those weird slant-walls in the Hobbit Hole. 

 

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“Writing is thinking. To write well is to think clearly. That's why it's so hard."

-David McCullough

 

2018 Walk to Mordor

2018 Read Harder Challenge                                                                                                                                        

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On 1/26/2018 at 6:09 PM, Gemma said:

So, things are looking up. I lost a pound. :confused: 

I know, I know, I said I was going to trust the coach. All y'all told me I should trust the coach, and that a few hundred extra calories might not *really* be that much more than I was actually already eating, and eventually convinced me that the increased protein and probably increased performance would be worth it in any case (which is still 100% true)

 

And also, I know, I know, a pound is only a pound. But my body really takes its set points seriously, guys. I weighed the exact same weight for over ten years, and then did that big food increase last fall and gained 12 pounds in 3 months - and now I have weight the exact same for four months. Never-ever fluctuating more than six ounces, ever, despite hydration, holiday junk food, moderate caloric restriction in attempt to cut ... nothin'. So getting on the scale at the gym this morning and being a pound down after eating like a high school football player all week was just WEIRD. 

 

yassssssss!! this is awesome news

 

On 1/26/2018 at 6:09 PM, Gemma said:

Overall, though, I'm pretty happy with it. I am healing faster than most people including coach, doctor, and phys. therapist expected me to, so that's pretty cool. 

this is EVEN BETTER NEWS!! glad you are listening to wise people and taking it slow ;) 

 

On 1/26/2018 at 6:09 PM, Gemma said:

Frivolous spending  - just that one previously-noted book binge, of which I got the backordered part in yesterday's mail, leading to an all-evening reading bender.
51t7-mUvXnL._SX322_BO1,204,203,200_.jpg

evil-laugh.gif

 

On 1/26/2018 at 6:09 PM, Gemma said:

 

Tomorrow will be another meal-prep-a-thon, I'm going to try and incorporate a few of my lessons-learned from last week.

 

  1. I'm pressure-cooking chicken thighs instead of breasts. Diced chicken breast meat, stored in rubbermaid and re-heated, is basically the same flavor and texture as three-year-old chewing gum scraped off the bottom of a library table. I am brining the chicken tonight. 
  2. I'm not putting blueberries in the egg 'n' oatmeal pancakes, it gets too soggy. I'll buy more containers if I have to in order to have separate portions of fruit. 
  3. I will be using 40 of my "discretionary" calories every day to account for having whole-milk cottage cheese, because 2% cottage cheese makes me sad and kinda bitchy. 

these are wise decisions. hope prep went well!

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Aaannndd <drum roll> - my bench press is back. I was scared to try it with my elbow still sore and cranky, but it felt way better than I expected! (Theatrical aside: I am so very grateful for a gym that has non-standard barbells, so I can test my abilities on a 15 or 35 pounder before I’ve worked up the courage to try a 45.)

 

Friday - ultra-light deadlift day! Time to see how much gripping the repaired right hand can actually do.

 

Monday

Squat:

45# 2x5

60# 1x3

70# 3x5

 

Press:

15# 1x5

25# 1x3

35# 1x2

40# 3x5

 

RDL:

45# 1x5

65# 3x5

 

Lat Pulldown:

75# 3x8

 

 

Tuesday

Squat:

45# 2x5

60# 1x3

75# 3x5

 

Bench:

15# 1x5

35# 1x5

45# 3x5

 

Lat Pulldown:

75# 3x5

 

Other challengey things are going pretty good too, I’m still doing good with the nutrition challenge, starting to get used to the amount of food involved. I’m still doing the Morning pages, but I don’t feel like I’m getting that much benefit from them so I won’t be keeping that habit past this challenge. I did go to the bookstore yesterday, but I limited my purchases to just what I went in for (Winter came out in paperback yesterday, been waiting for that foreverish) and one impulse buy - a new release titled The Hazel Wood caught my eye. Pretty sure I'm going to regret that one, but I’ve been so good at limiting my impulse spending this month that I’m okay with a little teenie touch of regret. 

 

tenor.gif?itemid=4737625

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“Writing is thinking. To write well is to think clearly. That's why it's so hard."

-David McCullough

 

2018 Walk to Mordor

2018 Read Harder Challenge                                                                                                                                        

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8 minutes ago, MikeWazowski said:

Random thought: why not jettison the morning pages early and start experimenting with a different habit you may want to keep next month?

agree with Mike on this! no use wasting precious time on something if it's not helping

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1 hour ago, Gemma said:

’m still doing the Morning pages, but I don’t feel like I’m getting that much benefit from them so I won’t be keeping that habit past this challenge.

 

What is your goal with the morning pages, get caught on news or something more esoteric?

 

 

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7 hours ago, MikeWazowski said:

Yayyyyyy for the return of the bench press!!! So glad the healing is coming along swimmingly for you!

 

Random thought: why not jettison the morning pages early and start experimenting with a different habit you may want to keep next month?

 

7 hours ago, CourtnieMarie said:

agree with Mike on this! no use wasting precious time on something if it's not helping

 

6 hours ago, Grumble said:

 

What is your goal with the morning pages, get caught on news or something more esoteric?

 

 

 

 

The original goal was to spark creativity and motivation to write more fiction. Julia Cameron has an almost cult-like following that claims that "Morning Pages changed their lives and made them into such productive artist-types they can't imagine doing without them." I've started it a couple of times in the past but never stuck with it for more than a week, because really it is just straight stream-of-consciousness writing designed (I think) to encourage people to ignore their Inner Editor. Which I already know how to do. I thought maybe if I stuck with it long enough it might turn out to be more impactful than that - but nope. 

 

So this past week+ it has been more of an exercise in "can I actually stick with something that I made a commitment to, instead of hollering 'this ain't working, NEXT!' as soon as I get bored?" 

But y'all are right, I would be better off committing to write actual fiction that is actually relevant to my actual project, even if I have to write it a) in the afternoon when I am not trying to squeeze meditation, scripture reading, and language practice into the same 45-minute time slot, and B) in that same stream-of-consciousness fashion, on the days that I don't have my head together enough to do it in an organized manner. 

I was really just trying to stick it out until the end of this week so I wouldn't feel like a quitter - kinda silly, in retrospect, but I hadn't thought that deeply about it until just now. 

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“Writing is thinking. To write well is to think clearly. That's why it's so hard."

-David McCullough

 

2018 Walk to Mordor

2018 Read Harder Challenge                                                                                                                                        

2018 Level-Up Plans                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           Battle Log

 

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9 minutes ago, Gemma said:

 Julia Cameron has an almost cult-like following 

I’m always suspicious when I encounter anything resembling cult like (if I manage to not get immediately sucked in, that is).

 

9 minutes ago, Gemma said:

I was really just trying to stick it out until the end of this week so I wouldn't feel like a quitter - kinda silly, in retrospect, but I hadn't thought that deeply about it until just now. 

I can totally relate to this - I hate feeling like a quitter and try to avoid it at all costs.

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 Ballroom dancer, data nerd, calisthenics dabbler

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Final workout of this challenge period - Friday, Feb 2:

 

Squat:

45# 2x5

60# 1x3

70# 3x5

 

Press:

15# 1x5

25# 1x3

35# 1x2

45# 3x5

 

Deadlift: (we went ultra-light on this because I still don't know exactly what my grip can/can't do. It hurt, but not injury-hurt, just "dang that hand is still weak as heck" hurt)

44*# 1x5

54# 2x5

* ish.  Coach wanted me to use the lighter women's bar because she thought the smaller diameter would be easier on my hand, so my first attempt was with a 35# bar and 2.5 kg Oly technique plates. My math is a guesstimate. 

 

  • I am no longer messing about with morning pages, having received sensible advice from internet wisepersons ^
  • I managed, over the course of one limited-spending month, to pay down the smallest of my remaining student loans to the point where next payday that sucker is GONE, and  I will be able to put an observable dent in the next-smallest. Happy Gem is happy. 
  • Eating and the associated meal preps have gotten easier, I am definitely kind of liking not needing to use my limited think-think power to play the "what do I want for lunch/what should I thaw for dinner" game every day. I am now gaining weight after that initial quick-loss, but gaining slowly (pound a week-ish) and not worried about it - nutrition coach will probably tweak a bit at next weigh-in. My jeans still fit so it's all good, more importantly (for now) my energy levels are fantastic. 

 

giphy.gif

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“Writing is thinking. To write well is to think clearly. That's why it's so hard."

-David McCullough

 

2018 Walk to Mordor

2018 Read Harder Challenge                                                                                                                                        

2018 Level-Up Plans                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           Battle Log

 

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AWESOME!

 

On 2/3/2018 at 11:01 AM, Gemma said:

I managed, over the course of one limited-spending month, to pay down the smallest of my remaining student loans to the point where next payday that sucker is GONE, and  I will be able to put an observable dent in the next-smallest. Happy Gem is happy. 

dat snowball effect tho!!

giant-snowball-out-of-control-rolling-do

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