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Harriet

Harriets Year of Energy: Act II

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Ugh, still sick. I've missed two weightlifting sessions, some cardio, and haven't done much cleaning. But I've done reading and or writing every day. This week we had to write a story based on a dream we had. We were supposed to pick out themes and symbols so that the objects in the story all have symbolic significance. 

 

My story is about a woman who leaves her safe but restrictive hive for the inhospitable outside world, and starts growing an exoskeleton that makes her hungry and powerful. Thank you unconscious mind, for having weirder, trippier plots than my waking mind. Maybe my mind is trying to resolve my desire to conform to societal standards of beauty (i.e. thinness) and my desire to become a powerlifting monster with huge quads. Or maybe I've just been playing too much fallout.* 


Hopefully I will get back to weightlifting soon, where I am keen to implement total rep goals instead of fixed reps and sets. I realised I've arranged my sets and progression scheme to avoid failed lifts, and I think I could make faster progress with a bit more ambition. 

 

*Speaking of fallout, I'm also happy because I have nerd loot in the form of a new hoodie. When I moved to the USA, I assumed the whole country was warm and inviting (why? movies, I guess, or plain foolishness). So I'm cold, especially inside the house. I also realised there are more consumer goods to choose from in America, yay for shopping. So I ordered a hoodie with a New California Republic logo on it, because I'm in California and I'm a dork**. It's got a bear with two heads, because everyone loves an apocalypse that causes hideous mutations to bears, cockroaches, and tiny, innocent chameleons. Maybe I need a nirnroot hoodie, too? Or a goldenaxe shirt with the dwarf riding the dragon thingy***. Hehehe. 

** Don't worry, I'm only going to wear it around the house.

*** This actually exists

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2 hours ago, Harriet said:

Don't worry, I'm only going to wear it around the house

But why? Wear that loud and proud. Id buy the person a beer who wore that.

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10 hours ago, Harriet said:

So I ordered a hoodie with a New California Republic logo on it, because I'm in California and I'm a dork**. It's got a bear with two heads, because everyone loves an apocalypse that causes hideous mutations to bears, cockroaches, and tiny, innocent chameleons. Maybe I need a nirnroot hoodie, too? Or a goldenaxe shirt with the dwarf riding the dragon thingy***. Hehehe. 

 This makes me smile. And I second Grumble's advice to wear it out and about.

 

I am sorry you are feeling meh. Hope you feel better. Stupid-easy Polish soup that I am eating now because a cold is threatening (I don't think you're vegetarian? If so, sorry!):

 

1# good breakfast sausage

Red wine (Eh, about a glass)

Chopped head of cabbage

Chopped apple

1 qt. each chicken and beef broth

 

Brown the meat. Deglaze the pan with the wine. Dump everything else in and ignore for awhile.

 

 

 

 

Gormaandacooking.jpg

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3 hours ago, Katerina said:

 This makes me smile. And I second Grumble's advice to wear it out and about.

 

I am sorry you are feeling meh. Hope you feel better. Stupid-easy Polish soup that I am eating now because a cold is threatening (I don't think you're vegetarian? If so, sorry!):

 

1# good breakfast sausage

Red wine (Eh, about a glass)

Chopped head of cabbage

Chopped apple

1 qt. each chicken and beef broth

 

Brown the meat. Deglaze the pan with the wine. Dump everything else in and ignore for awhile.

 

 

 

 

Gormaandacooking.jpg


Oooh, thank you for the recipe. I am not familiar with polish cooking but this sounds very promising. I'm not vegetarian, I'm a carnivore who makes a lot of vegetarian meals because climate change/husband's preferences. My compromise is to make about 4 small meat meals per week, only one of which may be delicious, climate-ruiny beef or lamb. Unfortunately, I don't know many recipes for pork yet, and I run out of ideas for what to do with chicken breast. But yesterday I discovered our local butcher has organic sausages they make themselves. When you cut them open, they look like real meat, not sponge, yay. I bought some spicy sicilian ones and made a stew with onion, white beans, rucola and tomato. So this recipe comes at exactly the right time. I am going to make this soon, maybe with green apples because I like them. Oooh, I just realised that lady has four arms. I also think from the hair that she may be a vampire matriarch. 
 

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Love your dream story!

Take care dearie. It sucks that being sick is disturbing your momentum. On the bright side, it''s also a perfect occasion to pamper yourself like crazy with zero guilt :D

blanket-knit-kitty-thumb-430x286-112360.

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2 hours ago, Nol said:

Love your dream story!

Take care dearie. It sucks that being sick is disturbing your momentum. On the bright side, it''s also a perfect occasion to pamper yourself like crazy with zero guilt :D

blanket-knit-kitty-thumb-430x286-112360.


Thank you! I think I'm getting better more quickly than usual, which says something for my attempts to improve my health, yay. 

That kitten, awwwwww. 

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So I've been faffing about doing so much nothing it hurts. This always happens when I am on the tail end of a head cold or sinus infection. Anyway, I googled "recovering from cold depression" because I in fact have depression (but it's been good recently) and this feels very similar. Lo, the scientists apparently already know something that I needed to know years ago. Apparently, depression might be caused by inflammation, and the inflammation caused by colds has depressive effects. They say in this article that:

 

"Illnesses like the flu or the common cold can closely mimic and cause depressive symptoms by activating your immune response and inflammation in your body (Hall 1996, Smith 1999, Capuron 1999)."

Apparently when you have a cold or similar, you produce cytokines, a protein that organises immune response. They communicate with the brain, which then produces its own cytokines. And brain cytokines apparently cause "
fever, fatigue, depressed mood, lack of appetite, lack of motivation, social withdrawal, poor concentration, and altered sleeping patterns" (my emphasis).

 

This is really important to me because I've been blaming myself for being unmotivated i.e. lazy. But cytokines. Now, there's no way I'm going to treat my depression as fixed and not take responsibility for mitigating it as much as possible. But it's nice to know that there's an identifiable physical (partial) cause for my lack of motivation which is also found in non-depressed people at times. I mean, if a cold, which is verifiably not a character flaw, can cause lack of motivation in otherwise upstanding people, maybe I can give myself permission to see my lack of motivation as a physical symptom and treat it, instead of seeing it as a personal vice and wringing my hands about it. Going to go research what causes excessive inflammation now. Maybe there are things I can do. I bet me five dollars it's deadlifts and vegetables. 

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6 hours ago, Harriet said:

 

This is really important to me because I've been blaming myself for being unmotivated i.e. lazy. But cytokines. Now, there's no way I'm going to treat my depression as fixed and not take responsibility for mitigating it as much as possible. But it's nice to know that there's an identifiable physical (partial) cause for my lack of motivation which is also found in non-depressed people at times. I mean, if a cold, which is verifiably not a character flaw, can cause lack of motivation in otherwise upstanding people, maybe I can give myself permission to see my lack of motivation as a physical symptom and treat it, instead of seeing it as a personal vice and wringing my hands about it. Going to go research what causes excessive inflammation now. Maybe there are things I can do. I bet me five dollars it's deadlifts and vegetables. 

 

I can't speak to the vegetables part, but my therapist has been adamant with me from the first session, that going to the gym and lifting things actually is more effective for managing anxiety, than medication would be. It makes perfect sense the same thing would apply to depression.

 

And no, lack of motivation is not a character flaw. Neither are fear, melancholy, anxiety, exhaustion, or any other psychological issue any one of us might be dealing with. Mental issues are physical symptoms, they just happen to be in the brain instead of in the rest of the body. Give yourself a break. If a friend of your were in your situation, that's what you would tell them... so tell yourself that as well. :) 

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3 hours ago, scalyfreak said:

 

I can't speak to the vegetables part, but my therapist has been adamant with me from the first session, that going to the gym and lifting things actually is more effective for managing anxiety, than medication would be. It makes perfect sense the same thing would apply to depression.

 

And no, lack of motivation is not a character flaw. Neither are fear, melancholy, anxiety, exhaustion, or any other psychological issue any one of us might be dealing with. Mental issues are physical symptoms, they just happen to be in the brain instead of in the rest of the body. Give yourself a break. If a friend of your were in your situation, that's what you would tell them... so tell yourself that as well. :) 

 

Yeah, I would never be such a judgemental sh*t to a friend. Sometimes I have to imagine what I would say to someone else just to get some perspective. But I need a way of being firm at the same time as being kind, because I can give myself a break that goes on and on (I'm imagining a month of playing video games, not leaving the house or changing out of my grubby old hoodie, and eating nothing but pasta with cheese, and cupcakes), and let myself off the hook for doing the hard work of getting better. So, firm but kind. Gotta find that space. 

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Hmmm. Good news is, after months of hinting at the amazing benefits, my spouse has started lifting. He's more of a mage --- so much so he was worried about getting too jacked in case his colleagues/uni students take him less seriously. Lol. I told him he can stop any time. So he's now going regularly without me, awesome.

Slightly bittersweet news is that it's taken him just a few weeks to lift almost as much as I do, though I've been working on it for 9 months. Sigh. I'm happy for him. I'm just not happy for me, watching all the war ships sailing past my little wooden bucket with a white t-shirt for a sail. Never mind. As soon as I shake this cold I'm going back and I'm going to work HARDER AND LIFT ALL THE THINGS.


Want to be this battleship:

giphy.gif?cid=3640f6095be46bbc416d356377

 

Am currently this paper boat:

giphy.gif?cid=3640f6095be46b573374474c77

Approximately 1,790,000 exp points to go.

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4 hours ago, Harriet said:

Slightly bittersweet news is that it's taken him just a few weeks to lift almost as much as I do, though I've been working on it for 9 months. Sigh. I'm happy for him. I'm just not happy for me, watching all the war ships sailing past my little wooden bucket with a white t-shirt for a sail. Never mind. As soon as I shake this cold I'm going back and I'm going to work HARDER AND LIFT ALL THE THINGS.

DO: Compare yourself to yourself to learn from your mistakes. Learn from others.

 

DO NOT: Compare yourself to ANYONE ELSE. FOR ANY REASON.

 

You are stronger than you were before. That's all that matters. If you're not injuring yourself and your still continuing to improve. All is well. You don't get to be Stefi Cohen overnight (One of the most badass female powerlifters ever). It takes two things, work and time. So get back in your bucket. Sail to the next port. Trade in for a bigger bucket. Eventually you'll get that warship.

 

Side note, sounds like your husband is either a battlemage or dualclassed into fighter when you weren't looking.

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8 hours ago, Grumble said:

DO: Compare yourself to yourself to learn from your mistakes. Learn from others.

 

DO NOT: Compare yourself to ANYONE ELSE. FOR ANY REASON.

 

You are stronger than you were before. That's all that matters.

 

QFT. Lifting is one of the few areas in life where "you do you" is one of the most fundamentally important truths everything else is based on. It's not a competition against anyone other than the you of yesterday. Don't compare yourself to anyone else, ever. Only the person you used to be. You know, the one who struggled with lower weights than what you lift right now... :) 

 

Also, remember that your husband has unfair advantages from being male when it come to growing muscles. It's simple biology. Don't let something you can't control (being born with a female body) ruin all the good things you get out of lifting.

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20 hours ago, Grumble said:

DO: Compare yourself to yourself to learn from your mistakes. Learn from others.

 

DO NOT: Compare yourself to ANYONE ELSE. FOR ANY REASON.

 

You are stronger than you were before. That's all that matters. If you're not injuring yourself and your still continuing to improve. All is well. You don't get to be Stefi Cohen overnight (One of the most badass female powerlifters ever). It takes two things, work and time. So get back in your bucket. Sail to the next port. Trade in for a bigger bucket. Eventually you'll get that warship.

 

Side note, sounds like your husband is either a battlemage or dualclassed into fighter when you weren't looking.

 

Yes, he seems to have dual classed <3 It seems he had some good stats he wasn't making full use of. I, meanwhile, am struggling to get my strength up to 12 so I can at least carry my own pseudo-dragon familiar in my backpack. Ah well. I have other stats, spells, powers, and witty dialogue that make me valuable to the party.

 

Also, "Get back in your bucket" is the best advice ever. Verily, I shall heed your words and return to my small wooden vessel. 

 

11 hours ago, scalyfreak said:

 

QFT. Lifting is one of the few areas in life where "you do you" is one of the most fundamentally important truths everything else is based on. It's not a competition against anyone other than the you of yesterday. Don't compare yourself to anyone else, ever. Only the person you used to be. You know, the one who struggled with lower weights than what you lift right now... :) 

 

Also, remember that your husband has unfair advantages from being male when it come to growing muscles. It's simple biology. Don't let something you can't control (being born with a female body) ruin all the good things you get out of lifting.


Thank you, my kind, wise nerds. I will try. I am going to keep my eyes on the next short term step--pulling 150 pounds--and a small mid-term goal. I don't even know what that is yet because I am planning to get more aggressive with increasing the weights, but I don't know how well that will translate into results. There's about 9 deadlifts before Christmas, so maybe I'll be able to increase every 2-3 workouts and manage 165 or 170 pounds by then. Maybe I'll do MOAR, but I'll try not to get hung up on it.

The journey is good. At whatever speed.

giphy.gif?cid=3640f6095be5cc674c41393941giphy.gif?cid=3640f6095be5cc674c41393941


 

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I tried total rep goals today instead of fixed sets and reps. My plan was to get 15 deadlifts no matter what, but only increase the weight if I manage it within 3 sets (I needed 4). It was good because it took the pressure off me to hit the right number of reps on every set. Some sets just suck, you know? It was also good because I took every set to failure. It turns out failing is not such a big deal, I just lifted the bar a couple of inches, something said NOPE I"M DONE (my upper back, I think???), and I dropped it. So I got 15 reps, whereas if I'd stuck to three fixed sets, I would only have gotten 10 total reps (I got  3/4/3/5, weirdly). So this way, I can get a bit more volume without too much mental pressure to avoid failing on any one set..

 

I also aimed for 30 deadlifts at 50% weight -- it took me 2 sets and it was hard in a different kind of way. I felt it in my forearms toward the end, which I hope is good for my grip. I think the mix of light and heavy is good, because I don't think I could stand doing 6 or more sets of just heavy or just light.Yuck. 

I'm thinking I can do more sets and reps on the other lifts, but I do get fatigued rather easily. So maybe 20 reps in 4 sets can be my goals for the other big lifts. Or, I dunno, maybe Squat could be more reps. Unsure. Anyway, I was so tired from lifting on the tail end of a headcold, that I thought it was a good idea to stop at a fancy cupcake place and eat two cupcakes. Carbs are muscle-sparing! Anyway, the first one was awesome, but the second kinda sucked and made me regret my choice a little. Ugh. Do you think there's any place for cupcakes in a sensible diet? If so, how many cupcakes? HOW MANY CUPCAKES???

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So, is it week three? Week two? Anyway, with my cold and lack of motivation, I've slipped a bit on tracking, cardio, reading, cleaning and my diet. I've been eating more snacks instead of meals, and eating more fruit instead of veg. I don't think fruit are bad, but they can crowd out vegetable based meals. Good news is, the no-wine-at-home things seems to be permanent. I used to drink wine pretty much every day, now I have it once a week or not at all. Also persisting is my meditation habit. And my diet is not that bad, I just need to re-commit to a plan so I can adjust where necessary for fat loss/strength gains. I was planning on relaxing a bit and focusing on getting stronger, but trying on jeans yesterday made me feel gross. Why do they look so awful, even though I am a normal weight and size? Bleargh. I am going to become a monk and only wear robes from now on. Take that, vile garments of malevolence and injustice! Right, from now on, I don't have a cold* and I am going to return to my challenge properly. That means three proper meals, limited snacks, hill walks, and reading daily. Although apparently California is on fire and the air quality is unhealthy. I am unsure what the net benefit of hard cardio in smoky air might be. 

*10 days is more than enough time spent being sick. I hereby declare this cold to be at an end. All further symptoms are to be steadfastly ignored.

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I feel you. I had this weird sick this year that was 6 weeks of feeling like I was under water - well enough to go about the daily routine, but out of it enough to notice a real difference when I was finally better. Is there a bit of weather change where you are? Hoping you feel better soon!

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6 hours ago, Harriet said:

I was planning on relaxing a bit and focusing on getting stronger, but trying on jeans yesterday made me feel gross. Why do they look so awful, even though I am a normal weight and size?

 

Because the majority of jeans out there were designed and manufactured by aliens, whose information about the shape of the human female form was gleaned from studying department store mannequins and 13th century European art. They are the wrong shape for your shape, and that is a problem with the jeans and not with you. Do not let a poorly tailored pair of pants make you question how gorgeous you are!

 

Serious answer:

 

Jeans are a trial, but they can become our best friends once we find the right ones. And that takes a while. A long while, and if we're lucky, it happens after we've finished growing, or having children,or liposuction, or any other things that drastically change the overall composition of our bodies.

 

There is no standard for jeans, just like there is no standard for what the human body looks like, and the best thing you can do is find that one model that works for you and then become fanatically loyal to that brand (and stock up, in case the model ever is discontinued!) The trick is to figure out what your body's shape actually is, all of it, not just the lower part that will be wearing the jeans, and then find a model and size that will fit that shape comfortably.  Long legs? Do they come with a long or a short torso? Large butt? Flat butt, but narrow hips? Wide hips on short legs? Do you want you butt to look great in the jeans, or your legs to look longer?

 

It's a mystery and challenge to find something that works for our unique shape, instead of whatever brand of jeans ads and/or other people claim are the best-looking and most flattering ones ever. I'm sure they are, for these other people. But since I have considerably longer legs than my friend, and unlike her actually have both muscle and fatty padding at the top of the back of said legs, the jeans that make her look awesome would make me look fat and stumpy. So I don't buy the same brand and model of jeans that she does. 

 

If you feel like putting in some time and effort, and find jeans that you'll be happy to wear, you can start with this Google search. :) 

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1 hour ago, scalyfreak said:

 

Because the majority of jeans out there were designed and manufactured by aliens, whose information about the shape of the human female form was gleaned from studying department store mannequins and 13th century European art. They are the wrong shape for your shape, and that is a problem with the jeans and not with you. Do not let a poorly tailored pair of pants make you question how gorgeous you are!

 


Thank you. I am trying hard to believe this.

 

1 hour ago, scalyfreak said:

 

 

There is no standard for jeans, just like there is no standard for what the human body looks like, and the best thing you can do is find that one model that works for you and then become fanatically loyal to that brand (and stock up, in case the model ever is discontinued!) The trick is to figure out what your body's shape actually is, all of it, not just the lower part that will be wearing the jeans, and then find a model and size that will fit that shape comfortably.  Long legs? Do they come with a long or a short torso? Large butt? Flat butt, but narrow hips? Wide hips on short legs? Do you want you butt to look great in the jeans, or your legs to look longer?

 

 

Ugh, I have probably spent a million hours googling flattering clothes for my shape, but they never give me sensible answers. They're just like: pear shape, wear bootcut jeans. No, that doesn't solve the problem and I don't like how they look. My actual problem is that, while I think my legs and butt are an okay shape (since the weightlifting, yay), they are a still bit fat and soft, so when they get squeezed into jeans, they get squished and flattened into a horrible shape, which seems to be a lot worse with stretch denim*. But even the smallest jeans I could squish my legs into are still too big at the waist. So the waist will slide down and give me a baggy seat with tight squishy legs, eek. I also have short legs/long rise/high waist. So, after much thinking, I believe that leg-hugging stretch denim is evil, and what I want is jeans with a high, small waist, and a non-stretch fabric that skims over the bottom and thighs without hugging them (you would think straight leg jeans would do this, but they don't... they're often quite snug where the leg breaks). 

*There must be so many people with this problem!!! I'm not overweight, I'm just not a lean, stone-hard bikini model.

I know you almost certainly don't know what jeans I should buy (you're right that I should just go try a bunch of things), but I just wanted to vent. I feel better. It's the jeans' fault, not mine. My loyal war-legs don't deserve to be confined in cling wrap. In my opinion the shops should be filled with long chainmail skirts and swishy, hooded robes, but that's a discussion for another day. 

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52 minutes ago, Harriet said:

My actual problem is that, while I think my legs and butt are an okay shape (since the weightlifting, yay), they are a still bit fat and soft, so when they get squeezed into jeans, they get squished and flattened into a horrible shape, which seems to be a lot worse with stretch denim*. But even the smallest jeans I could squish my legs into are still too big at the waist. So the waist will slide down and give me a baggy seat with tight squishy legs, eek. I also have short legs/long rise/high waist. So, after much thinking, I believe that leg-hugging stretch denim is evil, and what I want is jeans with a high, small waist, and a non-stretch fabric that skims over the bottom and thighs without hugging them (you would think straight leg jeans would do this, but they don't... they're often quite snug where the leg breaks). 

 

The reason you want the denim to stretch is so it actually stays close around the hips and butt, which in turns makes sure the jeans stay in place when you sit down and stand back up, rather than being pulled at least half the way down your butt from the way your legs move when you sit, and then stay there when you stand up. Stretchy should be necessary for the leg part of jeans only if you wear ultra-skinny jeans, a model intended to be super tight everywhere.

 

Straight Leg jeans assume the entire leg is straight, and that includes the hips, so if you actually have those, along with a nice curvy butt, straight leg jeans or a standard boot cut would have to be far too small below the hips in order to fit your waist, or have to be far too wide and baggy around the hips and waist in order to comfortably to fit your legs.

 

When you feel up to it, I suggest you look for jeans that were made for a "curvy" fit. In the world of jeans, "curvy" is not code for "plus size" or any of the less flattering terms we sometimes hear the fashion industry use to describe women who are not stick figures. In the world of jeans, "curvy" means, "upper leg flares out into hips, that flare back into a narrower waist". And when you try them on, ignore the fit of the legs entirely. Focus on hips and waist... can you squat in them without pain? Sit? Stretch? If you can, then legs that are too long can be hemmed shorter. If the legs are too short, look for that exact model, but with longer inseam. As far as how they will fit on your legs... once you find the right fit for hips and waist, the leg fit will come with it, because jeans made for curvy bodies typically fit very nicely on curvy bodies.

 

Yes, you need to try on a lot of different things in order to find a brand and model that works for you, but it will be a lot less painful if you narrow the field a little bit before you begin your search.

 

By the way, the most common reason boot cut jeans are recommended for a pear shaped body, is because the legs flare out a bit below the knee. Not as bad as with bell bottoms, but enough that you can wear ankle boots or knee boots underneath the fabric without looking like you massacred the boots and stretched the denim to death. Visually widening the legs at the ankle balances the width pear shapes have at the hips and creates the visual illusion of less width at the hips. It also creates the visual illusion of shorter legs, and no one should assume that's what you want without checking with you first. Most importantly, the fit of a pair of jeans should be about comfort as much as, or more than, aesthetics. And there's more to the fit of a pair of jeans than how wide the legs are at the ankle.

 

Sorry. I know you said you only wanted to vent, but... I like jeans. Love them a little. I think every woman needs to have at least two pairs of truly comfortable jeans that she knows make her butt look so spectacular that she could stop traffic by bending over to pick something up off the ground when she wears them. I also think jeans are unfairly maligned and unjustly disliked due to how incredibly difficult it is to find a pair that is both comfortable and flattering. They are a lot like high heels that way. That's why the two go so well together.:)

 

I'm done now. The jeans-loving geek is off for tonight... :) 

 

52 minutes ago, Harriet said:

My loyal war-legs don't deserve to be confined in cling wrap. In my opinion the shops should be filled with long chainmail skirts and swishy, hooded robes, but that's a discussion for another day. 

 

It would be impossible to execute a proper dead lift while wearing either of those... May I suggest tall boots, and a more traditional Xena or Wonder Woman Amazon armor instead?

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10 hours ago, scalyfreak said:

 

The reason you want the denim to stretch is so it actually stays close around the hips and butt, which in turns makes sure the jeans stay in place when you sit down and stand back up, rather than being pulled at least half the way down your butt from the way your legs move when you sit, and then stay there when you stand up. Stretchy should be necessary for the leg part of jeans only if you wear ultra-skinny jeans, a model intended to be super tight everywhere.

 

Straight Leg jeans assume the entire leg is straight, and that includes the hips, so if you actually have those, along with a nice curvy butt, straight leg jeans or a standard boot cut would have to be far too small below the hips in order to fit your waist, or have to be far too wide and baggy around the hips and waist in order to comfortably to fit your legs.

 

When you feel up to it, I suggest you look for jeans that were made for a "curvy" fit. In the world of jeans, "curvy" is not code for "plus size" or any of the less flattering terms we sometimes hear the fashion industry use to describe women who are not stick figures. In the world of jeans, "curvy" means, "upper leg flares out into hips, that flare back into a narrower waist". And when you try them on, ignore the fit of the legs entirely. Focus on hips and waist... can you squat in them without pain? Sit? Stretch? If you can, then legs that are too long can be hemmed shorter. If the legs are too short, look for that exact model, but with longer inseam. As far as how they will fit on your legs... once you find the right fit for hips and waist, the leg fit will come with it, because jeans made for curvy bodies typically fit very nicely on curvy bodies.

 

Yes, you need to try on a lot of different things in order to find a brand and model that works for you, but it will be a lot less painful if you narrow the field a little bit before you begin your search.

 

By the way, the most common reason boot cut jeans are recommended for a pear shaped body, is because the legs flare out a bit below the knee. Not as bad as with bell bottoms, but enough that you can wear ankle boots or knee boots underneath the fabric without looking like you massacred the boots and stretched the denim to death. Visually widening the legs at the ankle balances the width pear shapes have at the hips and creates the visual illusion of less width at the hips. It also creates the visual illusion of shorter legs, and no one should assume that's what you want without checking with you first. Most importantly, the fit of a pair of jeans should be about comfort as much as, or more than, aesthetics. And there's more to the fit of a pair of jeans than how wide the legs are at the ankle.

 

Sorry. I know you said you only wanted to vent, but... I like jeans. Love them a little. I think every woman needs to have at least two pairs of truly comfortable jeans that she knows make her butt look so spectacular that she could stop traffic by bending over to pick something up off the ground when she wears them. I also think jeans are unfairly maligned and unjustly disliked due to how incredibly difficult it is to find a pair that is both comfortable and flattering. They are a lot like high heels that way. That's why the two go so well together.:)

 


No, don't apologise, this is wonderful! You have the knowing of the jeans, for certain. You also seem to have a generally high fashion-lore score. Thank you so much.

 

I remember Levi's used to do curvy models, but not any more. I'll do some googling to see what brands I can find in my area. I also used to have the tightest ever bootcut jeans when I was 16. I'm afraid they look a bit dated to me, but the real problem is I imagine them all as low-rise and stretchy. Anyway, I don't actually feel I need to reduce the appearance of my wide hips, as long as my outfit doesn't hide my waist (low rise pants with normal length tops and jackets do exactly this, boo). I have also come to terms with my short legs, and I think my best bet is outfits with a high waist and shortish top. I really like some of the pinterest-girl outfits I've seen with effortless-looking boyfriend jeans, bare ankles, brogues, and cropped or tucked-in tops :)

 

10 hours ago, scalyfreak said:

It would be impossible to execute a proper dead lift while wearing either of those... May I suggest tall boots, and a more traditional Xena or Wonder Woman Amazon armor instead?


Well, I would feel a little exposed in a short skirt, but a longer skirt made of strips that move out of the way would be fine. Then lucky bystanders would only catch glimpses of my snowy knees when I bent down to pick up heavy things. Now you've got me thinking about tall boots. They're the closest thing a woman can wear to armour, without drawing unwanted attention to her, um, interests. :D

 

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Tried the total reps approach with squats and bench today. I'm aiming for 15 in 3 sets. Then 30 in 3 sets for a lighter weight. 20 or 25 heavies is too much for me at the moment--I really lose concentration and motivation and get generally fatigued rather than tiring out specific muscles. Maybe I'll do more once I've increased my cardio fitness.
 

I tried a 105 pound squat for the first time. I got 8 on the first set, then failed and dropped it on the safeties at the start of my second set. Freak out? Lack of concentration? Doesn't matter. I chalked it up as a glitch and kept going. Got 17 reps in 3 sets, going to increase for next week. But I noticed my heavy squats are kind of bent over, with my hips rising a little before my back, and glutes/hams doing more work than my quads, compared to lighter squats anyway... is this a bad squat, or just one kind of squat?. 

Benchies I tried 75 pounds for the first time. Got 17 reps, but only in 5 sets, so no progression for me next time. Misjudged how many reps I could do and had to ask for a rescue from a nearby lad. Light DB benches seem to be illuminating the fact that my left side is weaker. Hopefully they'll fix that up. 

 

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6 hours ago, Harriet said:

 

I remember Levi's used to do curvy models, but not any more.

 

Yes, they do. 529, Curvy Boot Cut, is available at most brick-and-mortar stores, and through Amazon. (The 529 is the object of my fanatic loyalty... I pay close attention to where they can be purchased!) If you have a Kohls, Fred Meyer, or JC Penney near where you live, look for the 529 there.

 

7 hours ago, Harriet said:

Now you've got me thinking about tall boots. They're the closest thing a woman can wear to armour, without drawing unwanted attention to her, um, interests.

 

WRONG. The closest a woman can wear to armor, is actual, functional, armor. Let's not allow the sexist video game industry or decades of fanboy "art" try to convince us otherwise, okay? ;) 

 

3 hours ago, Harriet said:

But I noticed my heavy squats are kind of bent over, with my hips rising a little before my back, and glutes/hams doing more work than my quads, compared to lighter squats anyway... is this a bad squat, or just one kind of squat?. 

 

It's because your upper body hasn't kept up with muscle development compared to your legs. Your hips are rising before your back does, because they're stronger, and they are doing most of the work. That's normal, and can be fixed by lowering your squat weight and adding accessories for your core muscles. And it would be a good idea to do that as soon as possible. Continuing to increase the weight when your core can't keep up with it, would be a very bad idea and could lead to injuries.

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53 minutes ago, scalyfreak said:

 

Yes, they do. 529, Curvy Boot Cut, is available at most brick-and-mortar stores, and through Amazon. (The 529 is the object of my fanatic loyalty... I pay close attention to where they can be purchased!) If you have a Kohls, Fred Meyer, or JC Penney near where you live, look for the 529 there.

 

 

Oh, interesting. I'll take a look!

 

53 minutes ago, scalyfreak said:

WRONG. The closest a woman can wear to armor, is actual, functional, armor. Let's not allow the sexist video game industry or decades of fanboy "art" try to convince us otherwise, okay? ;) 

 

I meant I can wear boots and pretend they're armour, but still look like a civilian. I'll feel covertly mighty, without alerting anyone to the fact that I'm secretly imagining myself to be a dwarven berserker :D

 

54 minutes ago, scalyfreak said:

It's because your upper body hasn't kept up with muscle development compared to your legs. Your hips are rising before your back does, because they're stronger, and they are doing most of the work. That's normal, and can be fixed by lowering your squat weight and adding accessories for your core muscles. And it would be a good idea to do that as soon as possible. Continuing to increase the weight when your core can't keep up with it, would be a very bad idea and could lead to injuries.


Is it my back though? I've been doing reverse crunches for my posture for a couple of weeks, and I feel stronger there. I don't bend over a lot. My hips just start rising a second before the rest of me. It feels like my hips are taking over because my knees and quads are a bit lazy... I could be imagining that, though. I guess whatever the problem is, the first step is to see if it goes away with deliberate focus on form with a slightly lighter weight. DAMNITALL I have de-loaded my squats so many times over the last 9 months. First for hip tightness, then for wobbly knees*, now for this. Still, best fix it sooner rather than later.

* my knees are still not awesomely solid. Meh. 

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1 hour ago, Harriet said:

I guess whatever the problem is, the first step is to see if it goes away with deliberate focus on form with a slightly lighter weight. DAMNITALL I have de-loaded my squats so many times over the last 9 months. First for hip tightness, then for wobbly knees*, now for this. Still, best fix it sooner rather than later.

 

I think everyone deloads their squats more often than they want to, myself included. That said, form is EVERYTHING. Worship the Goddess of Form and pay her tribute by deloading and focusing on how you lift instead of how much.

 

Body weight squats are great for adjusting form and paying close attention to hip and knee alignment. Doing a dozen or so as warm-up before you do barbell squats, goes a really long way towards keeping your form on track.

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