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Mistr gets serious about killing rats


Mistr

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Thanks for posting the videos...they are really cool. I know it might be a slightly (?...or a lot) different style, but it reminded me a Jane Austen movie.

 

Yes, it does look like a Jane Austen movie.  The theme for this ball was based on Downton Abbey.  Lots of people wore vintage dresses.  Some of the dances date back to the 1700s, while others are new.  It is one of the few occasions when a person can get really dressed up in modern life.  I say this as someone who does not appreciate opera.

 

Observations from the weekend:

 

I ran the rehearsal of the more difficult dances for the ball.  This is optional, but highly appreciated by dancers from other areas who may not have practiced them ahead of time.  Apparently my teaching skills have been improving.  I got positive feedback from several people.

 

I was ambivalent going into the ball because my right knee has only just gotten better.  I was cautious and sat out a lot of the quick-time dances.  I avoided the dances with a lot of bouncing or tight turns.  I think I danced all the slow ones (strathspeys).  I wore my old, closely tailored ghillies.  These are leather dance slippers that lace up.  They fit my feet well but only have a little padding under the ball of the foot.  Ideally a dancer's heel never touches the ground.  My feet missed the padding right away.  They were very sore by the end of the evening.  My knees did not complain.  However the muscles in my legs made up for it.  I did not get winded dancing but I was tired by 10pm.  I was more than ready to go home when the dance ended at midnight.  It finished on a fun note - one of the older dancers, a stocky gentleman in his late 60s or 70s, whisked me into the final polka.  We went around the room so fast the other dancers were a blur.  I concentrated on just following his lead and trusting him to guide us through the other couples. It was a blast.

 

I was sorry not to socialize with my friends at the after-ball party.  On the other hand, I was more happy to get some sleep.  I got up at 7:30 partly because it was sunny and partly so I could have a decent meal before aikido.  I was hungry when I got home at midnight and virtuously did not eat anything.  I felt slightly more human after a shower and a hot breakfast.

 

I got to the dojo with plenty of time to warm up.  Sensei tends to skip warm-ups for advanced classes.  Good thing too, because that is what he did today.  My feet were happier on the mat than in shoes.  My knees did not complain at all, even from sitting cross-legged.  I can only sit in seiza for about 30 seconds.  My knees just won't compress that way anymore. Sensei asked if we wanted to work on randori or weapons.  I voted for randori, which is what he did.  He had us work on movement and strategy.  No throwing our ukes, just moving past or between them.  I suck at this.  I started out getting caught all the time.  I got a little better.  I could avoid getting caught pretty reliably with one partner.  With 3 partners I could do one or two passes then I would tense up and lose it.  I can see where I want to get to with this, and it is going to take a lot of practice to get there.

 

Aside from the frustration of not being able to do what I was trying to do, I noticed I was getting winded.  Luckily for me sensei split the class into three groups.  Four people would be on the mat at a time in each group (1 nage + 3 ukes).  In the groups of 5 people one would get to sit out, usually just after being nage.  Maybe it was just because I was short on sleep.  Both the concentration and keeping moving were hard.  On the positive side, my only injury was stubbing my big toe.  I did that with no assistance from anyone at all. :P

 

We had a dojo meeting after class.  One of the chief instructors has been gone a lot because she has been travelling for work.  We learned that she will continue to be gone a lot because she will be taking vacation.  Apparently they hired a new person who will be taking over a lot of her work travel, so she can use her frequent flyer miles and many vacation hours to do fun things.  She is also taking over the Saturday advanced class.  She used to teach an advanced class on Tuesdays that was my favorite class of the week.  Looks like I will have to reorganize my schedule to make time on Saturdays.  I also volunteered to help more often with basic classes on Mon & Wed, because the other chief instructor is now covering both of those.  We'll see how things shake out.

 

Take-home messages

- I need to do more aerobic endurance work.  Next challenge I will increase intervals to twice a week.

- I love dancing, but it kills my feet and legs.  I am struggling with how to deal with this.

- I have to get more sleep.

 

On that note, I'm off to bed.  I hope to get caught up on everyone else's threads soon.

Level 58  Viking paladin

My current challenge    Battle log 

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A wonderful, but tiring weekend :-)  Glad your knee was ok!  Take care of your feet and legs though.

 

It is very cool of you to volunteer more with your club.  They would appreciate it, the way you describe it.

 

It's always neat to read you and the other Aikidoka on here describing your classes.  I wish Judo did more work on handling multiple opponents as you do.

Behave yourself, badly if necessary.
 

Current Challenge

Judo - Shodan

My Character

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Week 5 summary

 

Wow, time flies at the end of a challenge.  And stretches out in the middle.  Weird, but consistent.

 

Exercise: A

I did everything on the list.  Four sessions to cover all the PT exercises, 1 HIIT session on the exercise bike, 1 upper body session, 2 aikido classes.  Plus dancing and a short walk.  No rest days.

 

Food: B

I gave into temptation on Tuesday.  The rest of the week I was good about not snacking.  Probably too much dessert a couple days.

 

Sleep: D

I did not get 8 hours sleep any night during the week.  I went to bed on time on Friday and got one night of 8.5 hours.  Saturday I was out late, got up on time and had a short nap.  That probably came close to 8 hours total.  This explains why I was sleepy by 10 on Saturday night.

 

I am down 2 pounds from the start of the challenge!  I know this might just be fluctuation, but at least it is going in the right direction.  It helps me keep up my motivation for the last week.

 

I am going to do my own mini-challenge for the week between NF challenges.  I want to see what happens if I completely drop sugar for a week.  I enjoy sweet things a LOT.  Up until now I have resisted any diet that does not allow sweet treats. I think I have dealt with the emotional/stress side of things well enough that I don't need chocolate to maintain my sanity.  I am not willing to commit to 6 weeks yet, but one week is not that long.  I will also be good about portion size for desserts this week.  I would much rather lose another pound instead of have another 3 cookies.

Level 58  Viking paladin

My current challenge    Battle log 

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I'm really glad you knee made it through dancing and aikido without too much complaint.

 

It sounds possible to figure out some kind of shoe situation to give your feet some extra padding for dancing...I'm guessing period-appropriate shoes didn't have gel inserts, but there must be a middle ground :-)

 

I'm not totally sure I understand, but the problem with your leg during dancing might be an easy one. Are you just talking about calf soreness? That would be something your could build up with more dancing (!) and things like calf raises. If you are talking about shin splints, I would also have some suggestions.

 

I liked the story about your wild polka at the end of the night. Sounds like lots of fun!

 

No sugar sounds like less fun. Will you still allow fruit, or restrict/eliminate it? If allowed, you could try to use fruit as a treat (?)

Xena, Level 14+ Valkyrie Ranger

January 2017  December 2016

Oct/Nov 2016

 

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It sounds possible to figure out some kind of shoe situation to give your feet some extra padding for dancing...I'm guessing period-appropriate shoes didn't have gel inserts, but there must be a middle ground :-)

 

I'm not totally sure I understand, but the problem with your leg during dancing might be an easy one. Are you just talking about calf soreness? That would be something your could build up with more dancing (!) and things like calf raises. If you are talking about shin splints, I would also have some suggestions.

 

No sugar sounds like less fun. Will you still allow fruit, or restrict/eliminate it? If allowed, you could try to use fruit as a treat (?)

 

I have tried different things with shoes.  I usually wear jazz boots for dancing.  They have enough room for gel insoles and the 3/8 inch heel makes a big difference when I am standing a lot.  I have two pairs of jazz boots, one canvas and one grey leather.  I wear the canvas ones for regular classes.  They are dusty and beat up.  I wore the leather ones last year for the ball.  The right one was slightly too tight with the insole.  That resulted in me losing the toenail on my right big toe a couple weeks later.  I haven't worn those shoes since.  Other dancers wear jazz shoes with even more cushioning.  They look like athletic shoes with a gap (just cloth) between the ball of the foot and the heel.  I may try those.

 

The real problem is that I have bunions on the knuckle joint of my big toes.  These come from dancing.  I've had more than one doctor and physical therapist say that they see this problem often with dancers.  They don't hurt while I'm dancing.  They ache later when I'm trying to sleep.  They also make it hard to find shoes that don't press on them and make them sore.  And of course bouncing up and down is bad for the knees. :P

 

I think I can handle the leg pains with more exercise.  This is the first time I've had cramps in my calves.  I do calf raises already.  Not sure what's up with that.

 

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Yesterday I tried out a new exercise class.  The workout room in my building is closed this week for remodeling.  I am very curious to see what they will change.  It needs new carpet and the fans keep dying.  I think everything else is fine. I hope they won't take away the things I use (free weights, mats and the stretching frame).  I decided to take advantage of the situation to check out other options.

 

The interesting exercise classes are offered in the new building across the street from where I work.  That adds an extra 15 minutes of time to getting there.  That would not be a problem after work, but often is during my lunch hour.  Yesterday I had some slack in my schedule and took a class called "Insanity".  It had a lot of bodyweight and core exercises.  The bodyweight was done as interval training.  Mostly fast circuits of things like burpees, jumping jack variations,  punching, side lunges, etc.  The core exercises included plank variations, inverted V push-ups, V sits.  Challenging stuff.  The instructor was great about demonstrating low impact variations of the exercises.  I found them to be more than aerobic enough without the jumping.  I have been doing a lot of core exercises and I found the core work hard to complete. 

 

One nice thing about classes is that I am motivated to move faster than I would solo.  The instructor is built like I am.  If she can do it, I ought to be able to do it.  Clearly she is in better shape than me.  That just means I need to work more.  One does not have to be petite, athletic and 25 to do these moves at tempo.  The music helps too.

 

On the other hand, my right knee was very unhappy by yesterday evening.  I think it was the combination of aikido, dancing and insanity, plus standing and cooking for several hours.  I am going to take it easy on the aikido and aerobics until my knee calms down again.

Level 58  Viking paladin

My current challenge    Battle log 

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One nice thing about classes is that I am motivated to move faster than I would solo.  The instructor is built like I am.  If she can do it, I ought to be able to do it.  Clearly she is in better shape than me.  That just means I need to work more.  One does not have to be petite, athletic and 25 to do these moves at tempo.  The music helps too.

 

On the other hand, my right knee was very unhappy by yesterday evening.  I think it was the combination of aikido, dancing and insanity, plus standing and cooking for several hours.  I am going to take it easy on the aikido and aerobics until my knee calms down again.

 

Yes!!!!  Kick butt and take names :-)  Also, can I get you to explain this to my Mom?

 

That'll do it.  Probably a good plan. 

Behave yourself, badly if necessary.
 

Current Challenge

Judo - Shodan

My Character

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Fun Fun weekend!

 

Sounds like you have a good plan for you mini-challenge. Good luck with the no sugar thing!

 

Just keep going as you are, implementing your new ideas and you'll build your cardio capacity. I hope the legs start cooperating with you! You have some fun forms of exercise with the aikido and dancing. Keep up the good work.

Class/Profession: Hobbit/Ranger - Level 4

Current Attributes: STR: 2, DEX: 3.5, STA: 8.5, CON: 8.5, WIS: 11.5, CHA: 4

Habits I'm Working On: #1, #2

Previous Challenges: #1, #2, #3.1(fail), #3.2

Quote: "If we did all the things we are capable of doing, we would literally astound ourselves." Thomas A. Edison

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I have bunions too (suck!). I don't think mine are from shoes or exercise, but I think it's genetic. They make it really hard to find shoes that fit  (in addition to the bunion, my feet are big and wide)   :-(

 

The one on my right side is worse, and I have to be careful to get some padding under the ball of the foot --I feel your pain!

 

Do you ever get cramps in your feet? I was a swimmer growing up and used to sometimes get them when swimming (pointing toes to kick). It seems like I'm getting them more frequently (during yoga, scuba diving, climbing etc). I don't know if it's related to the bunion. I found a stretch for the sole of the foot, so I'm planning to try working it in.

Xena, Level 14+ Valkyrie Ranger

January 2017  December 2016

Oct/Nov 2016

 

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I have bunions too (suck!). I don't think mine are from shoes or exercise, but I think it's genetic. They make it really hard to find shoes that fit  (in addition to the bunion, my feet are big and wide)   :-(

 

The one on my right side is worse, and I have to be careful to get some padding under the ball of the foot --I feel your pain!

 

Do you ever get cramps in your feet? I was a swimmer growing up and used to sometimes get them when swimming (pointing toes to kick). It seems like I'm getting them more frequently (during yoga, scuba diving, climbing etc). I don't know if it's related to the bunion. I found a stretch for the sole of the foot, so I'm planning to try working it in.

 

I also have large, wide feet.  I feel like my feet are in proportion to my height (5' 8") but they are larger than standard sizes.  I wear size 42 European or 10.5 American.  This is a perfectly average size for an average height man, but difficult to find in women's shoes. Grump.

 

I get random cramps in my toes and sometimes in muscles in my legs.  Usually not in the muscles in the bottoms of my feet.  It happens when I am trying to sleep or when I am sitting in aikido class.  Never when I'm moving.  I would love to know what causes them.

 

My physical therapist gave me a home remedy for bunion pain that works for me.  Weird but true.

  • Moisten a cotton ball or gauze pad with apple cider vinegar.
  • Tape the damp pad over the bunion before you go to bed.
  • Put on comfortable socks to keep the pad from coming off while you sleep.

 

I did this after dancing on Saturday and my bunions did not hurt.  I also soaked my feet in hot water with Epson salts before going to bed.

Level 58  Viking paladin

My current challenge    Battle log 

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I get cramps in the bottoms of my feet occasionally. They happened a lot more often when I was drinking Gatorade and similar. When I stopped drinking electrolyte-y drinks, the foot cramps mostly went away.

 

Not sure if that helps or not.

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I get cramps in the bottoms of my feet occasionally. They happened a lot more often when I was drinking Gatorade and similar. When I stopped drinking electrolyte-y drinks, the foot cramps mostly went away.

 

Hmmm.  I'm not drinking any Gatorade.  There is probably too much salt in my diet.  I eat salted almonds for snacks fairly often.  I'll have to keep better notes to see if there is any correlation between what I eat and when I get cramps.

 

This week has been bad for sleeping and working out.  I intended to go to bed early so I could work out at home in the morning.  That only happened  on Tuesday and Wednesday.  My right knee has been very sore and swollen-feeling.  I'm planning on going to aikido tonight for at least an hour.  Weapons class is usually easy on the knees.  I'll make a decision on open-hand class based on how it feels.  Tomorrow and Sunday I will get caught up on PT.

 

Next challenge I want to work on flexibility and aerobic endurance.  And keep a maintenance level for strength and knee exercises of course.

Level 58  Viking paladin

My current challenge    Battle log 

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Yep I'm 5'10" and wear a 10.5 D. Or I would if 10.5 existed...usually a choice between 10 (squishy) and 11 (heel slips) with wide only an occasional option.

 

I could go on complaining about various foot ailments, but I guess that's not so fun. Just nice to know I have company :-)

 

Hope you have a great aikido class and can catch up on your sleep.

On the "glass half full" side, it's great that you were able to go to bed early and get up to exercise a couple days this week.

Xena, Level 14+ Valkyrie Ranger

January 2017  December 2016

Oct/Nov 2016

 

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On the bright side, I did get caught up on knee PT exercises this weekend.  I went to both aikido classes on Friday.  Turns out that was a mistake.  We worked on hanmi handachi (nage kneeling, uke standing) for half the class.  My knees objected strongly.  After trying a few I did the rest standing.  Not soon enough - my knees were very bad Friday night.

 

I did PT Saturday morning and a fair bit of walking during the day.  My knees were not as bad last night.  I was able to do hamstring curls on the exercise ball this morning.  I couldn't do those earlier this week because my knee objected.  Progress!  The weird thing is that it does not hurt during most movement.  I can't sit with my legs crossed, or sit cross-legged for more than a couple minutes.  It feels like the swelling is the cause of the pain rather than the result of the injury.  Go figure.

 

I started putting together a spreadsheet to calculate calories and macronutrients in food.  Thanks to Teri for the link to http://www.fatsecret.com/calories-nutrition/.  I appreciate that it lets you choose the serving size.  One of the options is 100g.  That makes it easy to weigh my food and calculate the amount I actually have.  Doing these calculations is going into my next challenge.

Level 58  Viking paladin

My current challenge    Battle log 

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Challenge #5 Wrap-up

 

My goal is to lose 12 pounds total, four pounds per challenge for this challenge and the next two.

 

Lost 2 pounds                    + 2 CHA

 

Food:

Rules: Planned desserts are allowed - one reasonable serving after a meal.  Fruit or veggies are allowed as a snack in the afternoon.  Almonds are allowed as a snack after work if I expect a long delay before dinner.  No snacks in the morning.  No commercially prepared treats from my coworkers.  Homemade treats are allowed, but must be saved until after a real meal.  Do something fun instead of eating sweets.

 

I stuck to the no snacks in the morning and no commercial treats quite well.  I just had one off-the-wagon day in the last 6 weeks.

+2 CON, +1 WIS

 

Sleep:

Goals: In bed between 9:30 and 10:00pm on work nights.  I would like to shift my schedule earlier so that I can work out in the mornings.  Getting up earlier gets easy for me as the sun rises earlier.  Getting to bed earlier is the hard part.  Do not start anything after 9:00pm.  Finish up what I’m doing and get ready for bed.  If I still have time at 9:15 I can get clothes and food ready for the next day.  Weekends get to bed by 11:00pm unless there is a special event. 

 

Fail.  I rarely got to bed by 10 during the week and by 11 on weekends.  Good intentions and the occasional nap do not count as progress.

 

Exercise: 

I was good about doing my knee exercises, intervals and strength training.  I cut back on aikido because of knee injury.  I took one extra rest day the week I was sick, but had another week with no rest days at all so I’m calling it even.  Last week I missed strength training because the exercise room at work was closed.

 

A             +1 STR, +1 DEX

 

Life goal: 

Get my taxes done early.  Getting them done early by an accountant is okay if I determine that they are still too complicated to do myself.

 

I got the paperwork together and my partner took it to an accountant.  I am still terrified to look at the numbers, but I will do it anyway.

+1 WIS  (out of 3 possible)

 

Conclusions

Very mixed results overall.  I have a solid routine of exercising.  That is not quite enough to keep me in shape.  I need to continue to work on endurance and strength.  I don't know what I am going to do about Scottish dancing.  It seems to make my knees much worse.  I have some plans for addressing these issues next challenge.

 

I made a little progress on my overall goal of losing weight.  I am just about back to where I was in November.  I'm glad that the trend is in the right direction, and frustrated that it has taken me more than three months just to get back to where I was.  I suspect that not getting enough sleep is a major part of the problem.

 

I am proud of my progress in not snacking at work.  There were many times that I was tempted and resisted.  I am sure that fewer sweets contributed to the modest weight loss I did see.

 

Overall I feel better about my life, but not as on top of things as I would like to be.  I still have a ways to go.

Level 58  Viking paladin

My current challenge    Battle log 

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I hope you don't have to give up dancing for the sake of your knees. 

 

Not snacking at work is major.  Congrats on that especially.  I hope that the sleep improves for you too.  I boggle at your current bedtimes :-)

 

Excellent work this challenge.  You are fantastically consistent with workout and willpower.

Behave yourself, badly if necessary.
 

Current Challenge

Judo - Shodan

My Character

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Congrats on the 2 lb. loss. Sounds like the snacking part of the challenge was a success. I hope you get the knees in shape and don't have to quit dancing. That seems like such a fun form of exercise.

 

While sleep is such an important part of being healthy it is so hard to get to bed at a decent time. Keep working on it. I must sign off now and get to bed so I can get my 7 hours of sleep. :peaceful:

Class/Profession: Hobbit/Ranger - Level 4

Current Attributes: STR: 2, DEX: 3.5, STA: 8.5, CON: 8.5, WIS: 11.5, CHA: 4

Habits I'm Working On: #1, #2

Previous Challenges: #1, #2, #3.1(fail), #3.2

Quote: "If we did all the things we are capable of doing, we would literally astound ourselves." Thomas A. Edison

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No snacking at work?  That sounds like a win to me - I snack all the time when I'm doing computer work.  And trends are good - better to have that downward trend to lead you back to where you were in Novemeber than stagnate or get further from that goal, right?  You'll keep chugging along and you'll be down that weight in no time. :)

RisenPhoenix, the Entish Aikidoka

Challenge: RisenPhoenix Turns to Ash

 

"The essence of koryu [...is] you offer your loyalty to something that you choose to regard as greater than yourself so that you will, someday, be able to offer service to something that truly is transcendent." ~ Ellis Amdur, Old School

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Congrats on the weight loss! :) Snacking is a big monster to overcome, I feel. (esp the almonds....my nemisis)

 

Looks like your knee was doing well for a while. I guess it's hard to know when to stop since the pain usually come after the fact. Sounds like your next challenge is already set with the calorie calculater and what-not.

 

Hope to hear more biking, dancing, and aikido in you next challenge! :)

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