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Merganser Gets off the (Metaphorical) Treadmill and Back on the Track(ing)


Merganser

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The first several months of this year were pretty good, mind-and-body-and-other-wise, but...then I backslid through two fizzled challenges and one period of altogether abstention and suddenly realized that it was October, already!  :huh:

 

Main Quest

 

My primary goal this challenge is to just get back on track -- and track-ING -- with my diet, exercise, work efficiency and productivity and general mental health and well-being, and not let another 6-week block elapse without having some progress/forward motion to show for it

 

And the good thing about having a couple of incomplete challenges is that I have plenty of unfulfilled "missions" to copy and paste!  :tongue: 

 

Mission​s

 

1) Eat

  • Back to food-tracking in My Fitness Pal, since that's worked really well for keeping me mindful in the past (CON 1)
  • Weekly food-planning and prep (WIS 1)
  • Minimal drinking, and definitely none at home (especially now that sitting-on-the-deck season is over in New England) (CON 1)

I put on a lot of weight over the summer with "unmindful" eating and imbibing, and in addition to being healthier, I would like to be able to fit into the rest of my wardrobe again so I don't have to expend thought on "What can I wear?" because that's a waste of energy

 

I came back from my bike trip to Italy determined to get back into gear diet-wise (pedaling up steep hills while wearing lycra is inspiring that way!) but it took weeks for me to really commit to it: it took a while for me to turn around my motivation from punitive to positive

 

(And I practiced all those bullet points this past week, and was successful, so I'm optimistic about this  ^_^)

 

2) Exercise

 

I never stopped exercising altogether, but I did pretty much give up on swimming because it was bugging my shoulder, and once I scratched out of my last triathlon, and decided to ride a hybrid bike with flat pedals on my bike trip, I stopped having anything to work towards, so I continued to go through the motions, but didn't feel like I was making much progress (especially in conjunction with lazy eating and drinking)

 

I want to get back in the pool occasionally, start running a bit again, and get my cycling muscles in really great shape because of course I came back from Italy and immediately planned another vacation for right before Easter  :D 

  • Continue bike-commuting whenever feasible, i.e. whenever it's not actually snowing/icing, since I have plenty of rain and cold gear (STA 1)
  • Indoor cycling 3 times/week (STR 1, STA 1)
  • Kettlebell bootcamp 2 times/week + 1 day additional strength work (STR 1)
  • Run 2 times/week -- and I did a 5K the other day to make sure I can still run! (STA 1)
  • Swim 1 time/week, just to get in the pool and swim with proper strokes (STA 1)

 

3) Read and Reflect

  • Pre-bedtime yoga and meditation (CON 1)
  • Read at least one chapter of one of my self-helper-ish books per day (WIS 1)
  • Practice my guitar at least 5 times/week (since I'm taking classes again) (CHA 1)
  • Resume money spending tracking! (WIS 1)

Life Quest

 

I keep challenging myself to get rid of STUFF and keep not succeeding, so once again, I'm going to remove at least one material possession per day, and also -- once my weight is back within a reasonable range -- do another clothes purge (WIS 1)

 

Merganser: Level 4 Anatidae Scout

STR 4 | DEX 5 | STA 5 | CON 7 | WIS 6 | CHA 2

Intro | Current Challenge: Train for Spain!

 Challenge 6: Back on Track...and Then Off Again | Challenge 5b: First-World ProblemsChallenge 5a: Make a Map | 

Challenge 4: Fly! (On a Bike!) | Challenge 3: Run!..(At All!) | Challenge 2: Stretch! | Challenge 1: Swim Faster! |

My Fitness Pal

 

"She was a woman who had wandered almost by accident into a life she had not quite intended for herself..." --Lawrence Osborne

 

"If it looks like a duck, and quacks like a duck, we have at least to consider the possibility that we have a small aquatic bird 

of the family Anatidae on our hands." --Douglas Adams

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Wow, that's a lot to get done in 6 weeks! Best of luck to you in getting back on the horse!

 

Yeah, I've been easing myself into it for a few weeks to make sure I could commit  ^_^ 

 

(And I've only got a few more months of being 42 to figure out the meaning of the Answer to the Ultimate Question, so no time to waste!!!)

 

(Fortunately, my gyms have towel service  ;))

Merganser: Level 4 Anatidae Scout

STR 4 | DEX 5 | STA 5 | CON 7 | WIS 6 | CHA 2

Intro | Current Challenge: Train for Spain!

 Challenge 6: Back on Track...and Then Off Again | Challenge 5b: First-World ProblemsChallenge 5a: Make a Map | 

Challenge 4: Fly! (On a Bike!) | Challenge 3: Run!..(At All!) | Challenge 2: Stretch! | Challenge 1: Swim Faster! |

My Fitness Pal

 

"She was a woman who had wandered almost by accident into a life she had not quite intended for herself..." --Lawrence Osborne

 

"If it looks like a duck, and quacks like a duck, we have at least to consider the possibility that we have a small aquatic bird 

of the family Anatidae on our hands." --Douglas Adams

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Welcome back! Ambitious goals but it sounds like you've been preparing already. You go!

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Scout 30/Ranger 1 (3 skipped)

Spoiler

"I must not fear. / Fear is the mind-killer.
Fear is the little-death that brings total obliteration.
I will face my fear.
I will permit it to pass over me and through me.
And when it has gone past I will turn the inner eye to see its path.
Where the fear has gone there will be nothing......Only I will remain."
-Litany Against Fear

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Shukar Still Isn't Lion

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(And I've only got a few more months of being 42 to figure out the meaning of the Answer to the Ultimate Question, so no time to waste!!!)

 

(Fortunately, my gyms have towel service  ;))

 

Hm, that rings a bell... Anyway... The probability of failure is 1,564,056,324:1 against. There are an infinite number of monkeys outside who want to talk to you about a side-challenge theme they've written. 

 

Er... Also, hooray for getting off literal and metaphorical treadmills! As one recent graduate of two dodgy challenges to another, I know we'll get through this one. 

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Level 20 Ferret Demon Scout

STR 43 | DEX 21 | STA 49 | CON 30 | WIS 45 | CHA 21

Challenges: #1 #2 #3 #4 #5 #6 #7 #8 #9 #10 #11 #12 #13 #14 #15 #16 #17 #18 #19 #20 #21 #22 #23 #24 #25

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Valeu a pena? Tudo vale a pena Se a alma não é pequena.

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So far (i.e. not very!), so good --

 

I went to a new-to-me spin class on Monday morning at my swim gym (since I haven't been swimming lately, I figured I should start getting some value from my membership, and the branch right near my office has early spin classes several days a week) and enjoyed it a lot. The instructor complimented my "cycling" form during class and asked me after class if I was an instructor (!)

 

Meals were precisely as planned (including 3 mini dark chocolate peanut butter cups for dessert) and prepped on Sunday, and since I was super-busy at work I didn't even take the mid-afternoon cappuccino break that has lately become customary (which is OK; trying a different cookie at the coffee shop every day is not  :rolleyes:) or spend money anywhere else, either.

 

I got stuck a little late at work, but that just made it a less crowded-road bike commute home, where I took care of most of my "challenge"-related activities (except guitar practice, since I gouged my left #2 finger with a vegetable peeler on Sunday during food prep...but it's a class for total beginners -- which I am not -- so I'm not worried about being left behind...yet): heated up dinner (on the stove, not in the microwave) and ate it with a glass of water, did my nighttime yoga routine and then brushed and flossed and read the first couple of sections of the "toxic triangle" book before going to sleep by 10. (Oh, and I got rid of a dried-up old snow globe from a trip to Baltimore with my grad school (i.e. very, very ex-) boyfriend in, like, 1996  :tongue:)

 

This week's excellent breakfasts!

 

gallery_25678_963_501756.jpg

 

This week's lunches, which are the envy of my colleagues!

 

gallery_25678_963_658033.jpg

 

Millet and mushrooms for dinner!

 

gallery_25678_963_305821.jpg

 

Goodbye, snow globe!

 

gallery_25678_963_651277.jpg

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Merganser: Level 4 Anatidae Scout

STR 4 | DEX 5 | STA 5 | CON 7 | WIS 6 | CHA 2

Intro | Current Challenge: Train for Spain!

 Challenge 6: Back on Track...and Then Off Again | Challenge 5b: First-World ProblemsChallenge 5a: Make a Map | 

Challenge 4: Fly! (On a Bike!) | Challenge 3: Run!..(At All!) | Challenge 2: Stretch! | Challenge 1: Swim Faster! |

My Fitness Pal

 

"She was a woman who had wandered almost by accident into a life she had not quite intended for herself..." --Lawrence Osborne

 

"If it looks like a duck, and quacks like a duck, we have at least to consider the possibility that we have a small aquatic bird 

of the family Anatidae on our hands." --Douglas Adams

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(So that's how you double-post!)

Merganser: Level 4 Anatidae Scout

STR 4 | DEX 5 | STA 5 | CON 7 | WIS 6 | CHA 2

Intro | Current Challenge: Train for Spain!

 Challenge 6: Back on Track...and Then Off Again | Challenge 5b: First-World ProblemsChallenge 5a: Make a Map | 

Challenge 4: Fly! (On a Bike!) | Challenge 3: Run!..(At All!) | Challenge 2: Stretch! | Challenge 1: Swim Faster! |

My Fitness Pal

 

"She was a woman who had wandered almost by accident into a life she had not quite intended for herself..." --Lawrence Osborne

 

"If it looks like a duck, and quacks like a duck, we have at least to consider the possibility that we have a small aquatic bird 

of the family Anatidae on our hands." --Douglas Adams

Link to post

Hm, that rings a bell... Anyway... The probability of failure is 1,564,056,324:1 against. There are an infinite number of monkeys outside who want to talk to you about a side-challenge theme they've written. 

 

Er... Also, hooray for getting off literal and metaphorical treadmills! As one recent graduate of two dodgy challenges to another, I know we'll get through this one. 

 

Yeah, even the dodgy challenges are helpful, in terms of compelling one to contemplate one's wheel-spinning in n many 6-week increments...  :huh:  ^_^ 

Merganser: Level 4 Anatidae Scout

STR 4 | DEX 5 | STA 5 | CON 7 | WIS 6 | CHA 2

Intro | Current Challenge: Train for Spain!

 Challenge 6: Back on Track...and Then Off Again | Challenge 5b: First-World ProblemsChallenge 5a: Make a Map | 

Challenge 4: Fly! (On a Bike!) | Challenge 3: Run!..(At All!) | Challenge 2: Stretch! | Challenge 1: Swim Faster! |

My Fitness Pal

 

"She was a woman who had wandered almost by accident into a life she had not quite intended for herself..." --Lawrence Osborne

 

"If it looks like a duck, and quacks like a duck, we have at least to consider the possibility that we have a small aquatic bird 

of the family Anatidae on our hands." --Douglas Adams

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Day 2 proceeded as planned:

 

Biked to the girl gym in the morning for kettlebell bootcamp, and I was still super-sore from the weekend's unusual exertions (i.e. Friday morning kettlebell bootcamp + Friday night "FitFest" fundraiser workout at the gym...where I declined to take it easy + windy Friday bike commute! + 10-mile Saturday AM bike ride to a 5K representing my first attempting at running since, like, August + 15-mile ride home via the scenic route + Saturday afternoon bike errands + Sunday AM spin class = WHEE!!!) which means that I should probably change things up more often  :tongue:

 

Prior to bootcamp I weighed myself for the first time in many months and discovered that I have not been exaggerating when I've been claiming to have gained 20-25 lbs since May because I know my body and I was absolutely right: 150.4!

 

Fortunately, this was after a couple of weeks of good eating and activity, and I'm feeling less puffy in general, so it's just an interesting metric, and not terribly discombobulating, and I felt pretty good in bootcamp, and although I could definitely see some of that weight in the mirror (especially looking sideways during push-ups!), I'm pretty sure I'm also more muscular than I was in May (e.g. I've been cycling the same routes in a harder gear lately). So, I'll just stay on course and lose whatever's excess and set stability and maintenance as a goal for 2015: I think I probably secretly enjoy (well, "enjoy") losing weight more than maintaining it and working on more subtle body comp changes, but that's way too time-consuming, so -- thinking ahead to future challenges -- I'd like to stabilize  ^_^

 

And it helped motivate me to avoid Bagel Tuesday at work!  :rolleyes: 

 

Work was another busy day, so no cappuccino break (or other money-spending) and just my planned meals. And since it was a nice night, I biked the longer way home, for dinner, book reading, stuff-purging -- numerous containers of sunscreen of unknown age -- yoga and reasonable bedtime. (Tried to practice my guitar, but my finger was still a little hurt-y, and it didn't seem worth the pain for such minimal gain since Wednesday night is class night anyway)

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Merganser: Level 4 Anatidae Scout

STR 4 | DEX 5 | STA 5 | CON 7 | WIS 6 | CHA 2

Intro | Current Challenge: Train for Spain!

 Challenge 6: Back on Track...and Then Off Again | Challenge 5b: First-World ProblemsChallenge 5a: Make a Map | 

Challenge 4: Fly! (On a Bike!) | Challenge 3: Run!..(At All!) | Challenge 2: Stretch! | Challenge 1: Swim Faster! |

My Fitness Pal

 

"She was a woman who had wandered almost by accident into a life she had not quite intended for herself..." --Lawrence Osborne

 

"If it looks like a duck, and quacks like a duck, we have at least to consider the possibility that we have a small aquatic bird 

of the family Anatidae on our hands." --Douglas Adams

Link to post

I love biking home from work.  Great way to relax and leave work at work!  So now that it is chillier out I see that as motivation to pedal a bit faster.  LOL  Those meals look fantastic.  Some planning and prep sure go a long way.

Food Fight - current challenge

Yeary Bug Count 0... if you are out and about then you are probably eating bugs. :onthego:

2015 - 22.5 bugs consumed

Chasing down the most awesome version of myself one step at a time.

The Character Battle Log 1 Daily Mile

 

 

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Welcome back, Merganser!! Your food looks INCREDIBLE already! I'm going to have to step my game up.

 

Good to be back, Kailer! A woman at the gym this morning was wearing a t-shirt with dinosaurs on it; I thought of you  ^_^ 

Merganser: Level 4 Anatidae Scout

STR 4 | DEX 5 | STA 5 | CON 7 | WIS 6 | CHA 2

Intro | Current Challenge: Train for Spain!

 Challenge 6: Back on Track...and Then Off Again | Challenge 5b: First-World ProblemsChallenge 5a: Make a Map | 

Challenge 4: Fly! (On a Bike!) | Challenge 3: Run!..(At All!) | Challenge 2: Stretch! | Challenge 1: Swim Faster! |

My Fitness Pal

 

"She was a woman who had wandered almost by accident into a life she had not quite intended for herself..." --Lawrence Osborne

 

"If it looks like a duck, and quacks like a duck, we have at least to consider the possibility that we have a small aquatic bird 

of the family Anatidae on our hands." --Douglas Adams

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Wow, these days are just flying by; I'm sure this is in no way related to all the work-work I'm committed to finishing up over the next 6 weeks as well  :rolleyes: 

 

Day 3 was more of the same, food-wise, plus a late afternoon cappuccino (only, i.e. no cookies!) break, which I risked because it was the day of my evening guitar class so I'd be up later than usual anyway and hopefully not affected by the caffeine at bedtime (which I was not, so: yay!)

 

Went to an indoor cycling class at the local gym again, with a different instruction than Monday, and like her method a lot (I had also attended her class last week), since she focuses on building endurance -- i.e. keeping the whole ride in the HR training zone plus spikes, without any easy "recovery" periods -- which is my goal

 

I'm also kind of liking the "bikes": at my regular (girl) gym, the bikes have a lot of numbers on them, i.e. RPMs, watts, gear/resistance, HR, etc. But the bikes at the local gym don't have any numbers at all, so I've really had an opportunity to use my HRM more...strategically or tactically or something, which is good for me and a nice break from focusing on the numbers (which are also good -- especially RPMs -- but I tend to get a little fixated on the resistance value, even though I know my body's "7 out of 10" is going to be different from day to day)

 

So, a good class, although I probably need to start being sensitive to overdoing it, but for now I'm really enjoying how indoor cycling exerts me without hurting anything...unlike...say...running  :tongue: (although some of that is being out of practice) and I definitely really like sweating before I go to work

 

Wednesday night I biked over to Harvard Square for my guitar lesson, via more efficient -- if slightly less scenic -- route than I used last week, and although I don't think I will ever like riding a bicycle with a guitar case attached to my back, I am getting a little more used to it (near-fall when stopping at a light with some unstable pavement notwithstanding  :rolleyes:) and I particularly enjoy biking home afterwards along the river in the dark, singing out loud -- whee!

 

In general, taking this guitar class was a great idea: I should have done group classes instead of private lessons when I did that years ago; I'm not sure I can articulate exactly why, but I feel like I prefer the group music class for the same reasons I much prefer small group training at the gym to one-on-one personal training. Food for thought.

 

Anyway, good guitar class, great ride home -- colder air moved in overnight between Wednesday and Thursday, but Wednesday evening was still beautiful -- and okay dinner (the millet and mushroom thing is not my favorite, but it's good to have easily heated nutritious dinner waiting for me at home)

 

Money-wise, I bought a cappuccino and a box of little bandages for my still-healing finger gouge -- I had been wearing a big, sympathy-fishing one, but needed something a little lower-profile for forming chords  :tongue: -- and two books from Amazon, which is something I need to keep an eye on, although they look like excellent books.

 

(I did NOT spend money mailing my niece's birthday present, because I didn't get out to the post office and because I am a bad aunt; I didn't even remember exactly what day it was, even though it's supposed to be easy since I suspect my sister-in-law scheduled her C-section deliberately on 11/12/13  :rolleyes: ...fortunately, she has a lot of less negligent aunts and uncles and is, after all, ONE)

 

I purged some DVDs that I know I will never feel compelled to watch again (I started DVD purging a while back and then stopped, but I expect I'll more of this in forthcoming weeks, since in the age of streaming EVERYTHING, there is little reason to keep a collection of media artifacts...someday I will have to finish ripping all of my CDs, back them up to The Cloud and get rid of THAT collection...but that's for another Challenge), read some more of my book, and then did some pre-bedtime yoga (feeling very unflexible, but, well, that's why I do it!)

 

And even though I didn't get to sleep until a bit after 10, I slept very well and woke up refreshed and ready to ride and fake-ride!

 

Speaking of riding...this is what I carry on my bike and person on guitar lesson days; I'm pretty sure I look pretty ridiculous, but I think it's probably excellent strength and balance training  :D 

 

gallery_25678_963_93645.jpg

Merganser: Level 4 Anatidae Scout

STR 4 | DEX 5 | STA 5 | CON 7 | WIS 6 | CHA 2

Intro | Current Challenge: Train for Spain!

 Challenge 6: Back on Track...and Then Off Again | Challenge 5b: First-World ProblemsChallenge 5a: Make a Map | 

Challenge 4: Fly! (On a Bike!) | Challenge 3: Run!..(At All!) | Challenge 2: Stretch! | Challenge 1: Swim Faster! |

My Fitness Pal

 

"She was a woman who had wandered almost by accident into a life she had not quite intended for herself..." --Lawrence Osborne

 

"If it looks like a duck, and quacks like a duck, we have at least to consider the possibility that we have a small aquatic bird 

of the family Anatidae on our hands." --Douglas Adams

Link to post

Day 4, Thursday

 

Biked to the girl gym for the 7 AM Turbo Ride! (i.e. indoor cycling) class, and had a great "ride": this instructor is another outdoor cyclist and therefore runs one of the classes that simulate road riding that I prefer (to classes that I think of as "Zumba on a Stationary Bike"). Although I think I heard him getting schooled by one of the ladies in the class afterwards for making gender generalizations: he had mentioned that his Tuesday morning class is at another branch of the girl gym, followed by a class at another gym that happens to have been all boys for the last year or so, and that they talk about guy stuff there, and listen to guy music, and that, as a joke, he included Wilson Phillips' "Hold On" in the boys' mix the other day. And I guess that's sexist, or something? Weird. But when I was leaving, she was applauding him for also including a more "universal" anecdote later in the class, so I guess she won't report him to management? Whatever. Anyway, always a motivating class, so that was good

 

Got stuck in crazy traffic on the way to the office (a bike widened by panniers does not fit between a city bus and poorly parallel-parked SUVs...I tried!) due to a scheduled F-15 flyover, which, on account of the traffic, I got to see twice. Whee!

 

Work was productive -- and that's where I did the day's purge, i.e. recycling a box of business cards from old office address -- and then I biked home the long way and felt pretty wiped out by the time I got there; indoor cycling doesn't impact my joints, but apparently 4 classes in 5 days will sap one's strength a bit  :tongue:

 

I had my scheduled dinner -- after scheduled breakfast and lunch and no cappuccino break, although I have been taking some dairy in my regular coffee lately -- and then took care of my evening challenge "chores" while enjoying a cup of chamomile tea: practiced my guitar, read a chapter and a half of my book, brushed and flossed, and yoga-ed. And had my lights out by 9:07 PM!

 

I had also recorded my spending for the day, including postage for my niece's belated birthday present and several CDs from Amazon...it would probably be good for me to do a Challenge sometime that involves NOT internet shopping  :rolleyes: 

 

Day 4, Friday

 

Woke up to some light rain mixed with snow on Friday morning, and therefore biked to the gym for Kettlebell Bootcamp in my rain pants

 

And although I wished I had worn my warmer gloves, the rain pants were extremely helpful, since I only realized after my shower that I had failed to pack a pair of jeans in my gym bag  :wacko: So, rather than put my sweaty gym pants back on, I went to work in my long underwear (which I packed as a precaution last week sometime) and my -- very onomatopoetically "swishy" -- rain pants. (Or as the colleague I expected to make the first comment about them called them, my "stealth pants"  :tongue:)

 

Of course, up until 2 weeks ago, I had a pair of yoga pants in the bottom drawer of my desk, but had brought them home because I don't do yoga during the day anymore. Duh.

 

And of course this is the first Friday in a while when I have actual plans after work, so I'm debating whether to bike home to change and then bike back into the city (I'm going to a concert on my own, so this does not inconvenience anyone but me) or run (i.e. bike) over to nearby Quincy Market to buy a pair of jeans, which will involve spending money. Decisions, decisions...

 

(If it was going to be a loud show at a rock club I would consider wearing my rain pants, because aging music fans don't care what they look like, but it's a sit-down show and the pants are really noisy when I move. In related news -- i.e. since I am old and like to respect my bedtime, even on weekends -- I was thoroughly delighted to receive this concert-related e-mail "ALERT" the other day: "Bob Dylan and His Band will take the stage promptly at 8PM with no support act.  This venue is reserved seating, so early arrival is suggested." Hee!)

 

Okay, back to work, especially if I decide to go shopping, but Kettlebell Bootcamp was great (yay, burpees and one-legged bridges!) and I'm on track with my food today (even though it's free Friday lunch day, and there are many treats upstairs, as usual), and have a modest dinner plan and a non-drinking-at-the-concert-venue plan: I will be delighted to not pay $10 for a plastic cup of Harpoon IPA!  ^_^ 

Merganser: Level 4 Anatidae Scout

STR 4 | DEX 5 | STA 5 | CON 7 | WIS 6 | CHA 2

Intro | Current Challenge: Train for Spain!

 Challenge 6: Back on Track...and Then Off Again | Challenge 5b: First-World ProblemsChallenge 5a: Make a Map | 

Challenge 4: Fly! (On a Bike!) | Challenge 3: Run!..(At All!) | Challenge 2: Stretch! | Challenge 1: Swim Faster! |

My Fitness Pal

 

"She was a woman who had wandered almost by accident into a life she had not quite intended for herself..." --Lawrence Osborne

 

"If it looks like a duck, and quacks like a duck, we have at least to consider the possibility that we have a small aquatic bird 

of the family Anatidae on our hands." --Douglas Adams

Link to post

Wireless Internet @home was being difficult, and since I didn't have to wrestle with it for work reasons, I decided to just do minimal typing over the weekend (which is probably better for my wrists, shoulder, etc., anyway  ^_^)

 

Day 5, Friday (cont'd)

 

The rest of day 5 unfolded pretty much as anticipated:

 

I did go out to buy a pair of jeans, and managed to get to Quincy Market and back in under 35 minutes! Even though I had to go a roundabout way because I was on my bike and forgot which roads which one way in which direction! And popped into Banana Republic before going to the Gap to see if they had anything! (They did, but all of the styles included the adjective "skinny", which...no. Even boot-cut jeans predictably cling to my calves, for god's sake!  :tongue:

 

The last time I bought jeans at the Gap, I got a style called "sexy boot", in spite of it's stupid name, but they didn't have any in stock, so I had to choose between "sexy boyfriend" ( :rolleyes:) and "perfect boot". I knew I wasn't a 27 (the jeans I'm NOT wearing right now because they're too small are 26s and 27s) and have lost weight since I bought a pair of 29s over the summer, so I looked for a 28, but they didn't seem to have any out. But since I've gone shopping before, I headed to the sale section, where, sure enough, there were a bunch of "perfect boot" jeans, including size 28s, in the kind of dark wash that I was looking for. And apparently, this is a currently unfashionable dark wash, because they were marked down to 19.99. Or maybe it's because they didn't have any rips in them. In any case, score!

 

And that evening, as my supervisor was leaving, he joked about my rain pants again and I pointed out that I was, in fact, wearing quiet pants because I had gone shopping. He looked a little horrified and asked if it was because people had made of fun of me, and I was, of course, like, "No, it's because I'm going out tonight; I grew up with 4 brothers and I've worked here for 15 years -- do you really think I can't take a little completely deserved mockery when I forget to pack real pants?"

 

But he said he was going to try to get the company to pay for them, and a few minutes later the big boss came upstairs and was all apologetic for making fun of my rain pants, and I reiterated the, "No, really, not an issue" to him, but he insisted on reimbursing me, and handed me a $20 bill. He was surprised by that; apparently he asked one of my female colleagues on his way upstairs how much women's jeans cost, and she told him, "At least $150"; since he didn't ask for a receipt, I probably could have made more than $0.01 on the deal  :tongue:

 

(And of course I should probably donate the $20 to an organization that combats sweatshops in Bangladesh...)

 

Anyway, dinner was soup as anticipated, followed by cappuccino and chocolate-covered coconut chunks before the concert, where I didn't consume anything. Yay. (And I actually ordered a cookie to go with my cappuccino and chocolate-covered coconut chunks, but the gods of moderate consumption intervened and the girl taking my order didn't hear that part  ^_^)

 

I got home a bit late, so I read and yoga-ed, but didn't practice my guitar. Oh, I also put another couple of DVDs in the donate pile.

 

Day 6, Saturday

 

Got up early as usual, and went for a little walk for coffee before coming home for a variation on my regular breakfast and then later biked into the city for my actual workouts

 

Went for a 4-mile run around the Esplanade and felt pretty good: my average speed was only about 10 minutes/mile, but I was taking it easy, and that was with starting with my first mile at like 10:30 and my last mile at like 9:30. My hip wasn't thrilled, but my foot was fine, and after warming up, I felt pretty good and very energized and endorphin-y. Nice. I also felt like I could have kept going, but I had already planned to follow that up with a swim, so I walked back to the swim gym where I did a fairly easy 45-minute, 1500 swim, with a variety of free/back/breast and lots of kicking, so that I could work out any issues with my hip and just practice kicking from my hips in general

 

Even though I hadn't been in the pool in...wow, probably a couple of months...I felt really good. Yay. And I made sure to focus on proper stroke technique for my shoulder, and proper timing (i.e. not hesitating with my left arm)

 

I'm looking forward to getting back in the pool again

 

Also, it DID help my hip; I think the run-swim combo is a winner

 

Had a quick lunch at Starbucks on the way to the nearby girl gym (i.e. where I keep my shower stuff) for a shower and then biked over to the theater for a matinee of "Awake and Sing", which was really good. I knew it would be good for me, but it was a terrific production (I had a few issues with some of the performances, but they also felt like how they were written/directorial choice things) -- Saturdays have turned into an exercise + culture thing for me, and I'm kind of digging it. I have another play scheduled next weekend and the only thing I'll change is getting out of the house earlier so I have time for steam room and sauna PLUS the shower, because, well, why not?!

 

And although I can probably do better than a Starbucks protein box (and chocolate peanut butter cups) for lunch, it was a good change from my usual in-between exercise and culture meal, i.e. brunch with a couple of cocktails and wine  :rolleyes: 

 

Then I biked to the office to pick up my computer (which it turned out I didn't need over the weekend, thankfully) and biked home the long way to avoid Saturday drivers on the roads

 

Dinner was my old stand-by scallops and clementines and red onion over wilted spinach, since I had defrosted the scallops during the day, without wine, cocktails, or dessert. Which is to say, exactly as planned.

 

I practiced my guitar, purged some more DVDs (I wasn't feeling overly inspired to purge, but every bit helps!), read my book and got to bed relatively early, after yoga-ing

 

Day 7, Sunday

 

Went for a walk for coffee and enjoyed the falling yellow and red leaves there and back, then ate breakfast at home while preparing my food plan/shopping list and biked over to Whole Foods for groceries

 

Later in the morning, I biked to the gym via Trader Joe's and got there in time to do 1 set of the 3rd day of strength exercising I "Challenged" myself to add during these 6 weeks before spin class; after spin class, I did another set (but in the future, I'll give myself more time before class, to do 3 sets)

 

I was also planning to do my 2nd run of the week, but decided after my afternoon food prep extravaganza to not push it, and just biked back over to the grocery store to compost my leftover vegetable bits (because apparently I do that now  :tongue:) and pick up a few odds and ends

 

When I got home I was able to get on the Internet long enough to update my spending spreadsheet and then did a slightly more ambitious purge of stuff: I got rid of some outerwear (well, set it aside to give away) and went through my big bin of gloves/hats/scarves and did a fairly ruthless purge of that -- I also made a list of other purges I need to do on weekends during this Challenge (including "Exercise Clothes" and "Sock Drawer(s)")

 

I had prepped breakfasts and lunches for the week, and Sunday evening I made a stuffed acorn squash recipe I love for Sunday and Monday dinner; for dessert I had my second package of dark chocolate peanut butter cups even though I ALSO had cookies with cappuccino after the gym, but my rule this Challenge is that as long as I log it, I can eat it (and I DID think hard about it)

 

I was watching TV, so I didn't practice my guitar because I suddenly felt really wiped out, but I read my book and yoga-ed and got to bed a bit after 9 PM, which was good

 

Week #1 Summary

 

Pretty good, so far: 2 weeks of total food logging, 2 weeks of no drinking at all, 1 week of spending-logging and except for running just 1 time instead of 2 times, I fulfilled all of my scheduled "missions" for the week

 

I've been doing a lot of useful reflecting that I'll put together articulately at some point, but overall, I feel really good and definitely back on track (but not in a panicky, over-regimented way)

 

Yay.

Merganser: Level 4 Anatidae Scout

STR 4 | DEX 5 | STA 5 | CON 7 | WIS 6 | CHA 2

Intro | Current Challenge: Train for Spain!

 Challenge 6: Back on Track...and Then Off Again | Challenge 5b: First-World ProblemsChallenge 5a: Make a Map | 

Challenge 4: Fly! (On a Bike!) | Challenge 3: Run!..(At All!) | Challenge 2: Stretch! | Challenge 1: Swim Faster! |

My Fitness Pal

 

"She was a woman who had wandered almost by accident into a life she had not quite intended for herself..." --Lawrence Osborne

 

"If it looks like a duck, and quacks like a duck, we have at least to consider the possibility that we have a small aquatic bird 

of the family Anatidae on our hands." --Douglas Adams

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Week 2, Day 1

 

Monday was a buckets-of-rain sort of day, so I took the T to work instead of biking (and since I was on the 5:09 train, and therefore was minimally delayed by picking people up and dropping people off, I may have actually beat my fair-weather biking time getting to the office)

 

I walked over to the gym for spin class, which was fine, although a little short: it's scheduled for 45 minutes, and I generally expect at least 40 minutes of work and a little bit of stretching, but my HRM only clocked, like, 35 minutes of bike time. Decent enough class, but I'll have to start going a bit early if that's going to continue; I don't like clipping in for less than 45 minutes  :tongue:

 

(Oh, and since I was wearing a HRM, the instructor asked me a couple of times where I was at: when I said "179" -- which, yes, is high -- he responded: "Drink one less beer on the weekends."  :rolleyes:) (When I said "151", he responded: "Add more resistance."  ^_^)

 

Breakfast was the usual, and this week I'm weaning myself off of my recently reacquired habit of adding Mini Moos to my coffee, and I successfully managed that all day (I'll take dairy in my coffee when it's meant to include dairy; i.e. cappuccino!)

 

This week's lunch is oven-roasted chicken breasts with roasted Brussels sprouts and pancetta and roasted carrots and fennel with cardamom; and -- not for the first time -- I marvel at how much vegetable mass my little-looking Ziploc containers hold!

 

gallery_25678_963_160734.jpg 

It was profoundly pouring by the time I headed home, so I definitely felt good about not biking -- I was probably ready for some rest time, anyway -- but was vindicated in my usual/preferred commute by significant delays caused by a broke-down train in Haymarket  :tongue:

 

The first thing I did when I got home was take care of my getting-rid-of-stuff goal; in this case, going through a pile of purses and handbags and whatnot and earmarking several of them for Dress for Success. Until I went through the hall closet on Sunday afternoon looking for outerwear to get rid of, I had totally forgotten that I had put, like, 15 (!) bags on a special closet rod hanger for purses, like, at least a year ago. Which means I obviously haven't missed any of them in that time  :rolleyes: (Which means I probably could have gotten rid of ALL of them, but...baby steps!)

 

Dinner was couscous-stuffed acorn squash with pistachios and pomegranate seeds (preceded by some pistachios, which I probably should have skipped, but did log in My Fitness Pal), which was scrumptious (I continue to subscribe to Women's Health magazine mainly for the recipes; there are sometimes a couple of months in a row where there's nothing interesting, but then there will be some serious keepers like this one); I'll be making another batch later this week, and trying millet as a substitute for couscous, as part of my millet experiment:

 

gallery_25678_963_411858.jpg

 

I watched a little bit of TV with dinner, but then had a cup of herbal tea and switched to practicing my guitar; not a particularly long session, but the goal is to do it 5 days a week and even 10 minutes is building a good habit (also, it will take some time to re-develop my calluses!) By the time I was done, I was feeling appropriately tired, so I read my book for a little bit -- a lot of the ideas are familiar, but some of the particular terminology is really resonating with me -- "urge surfing"!, "approach goals"! -- and I'm looking forward to reviewing and implementing some strategies when I've finished reading through it once -- "A lapse is not a relapse!" Then I did some yoga stretches -- my back was so tight; I may schedule a massage this weekend, and am glad I have a chiropractor appointment on Friday -- and put myself to bed at a reasonable hour, having fulfilled all of my daily "missions" (and having applied a temporary fix to a corroded bit in the toilet tank, which I was address more robustly over the weekend)

 

Week 2, Day 2

 

Clear-ish skies and clement-ish temperature this morning, so I biked to the gym for a quick warm-up on the elliptical (it wasn't that warm out) and my Tuesday morning kettlebell bootcamp

 

I was glad I had a scheduled class, because I definitely felt tired and achy; this is probably partly due to dehydration: not because of drinking too much wine the night before (since I didn't drink any), but because of the old-fashioned heat in my apartment. I should probably add "drink a big glass of water before bedtime" to my daily to-do list; I always get up to go to the bathroom anyway  :tongue:

 

Once I got warmed up, bootcamp was great, although I was definitely still aware of some tightness in my back. One of the sets we did which I liked was 10 sets of 10 swings on 45 seconds; I used a 45 lb kettlebell, but could definitely go heavier next time. For another portion of the workout, we did a circuit, which I like, because circuits feel like they go very quickly: one station was burpees with cleans, which I like because it feels a little less intense than burpee-after-burpee-after-burpee and because the kettlebell is a helpful visual reference when I'm jumping up, to make sure I jump back to wear I started (I tend to migrate backwards while doing regular burpees); another station was something new to us: pull-up sit-ups (or something like that): doing a sit-up starting with a kettlebell held over your head on the floor like you're going to do something triceps-y and pulling it over during the sit-up and ending up with your elbows tucked into your side and the kettlebell in front of your chest. I could feel exactly where I will be feeling those tomorrow morning  ^_^

 

Then it was shower, sauna, get dressed -- and this time I had packed all of the appropriate clothing -- and bike to the office

(Someday, I won't register Beacon Hill as any kind of athletic ordeal; today was not that day, particularly after suitcase deadlifts...)

 

While I was at the gym, I weighed myself again and observed that I had dipped below 150 again, which is gratifying; as is the fact that I'm wearing a snug turtleneck sweater and size-smaller jeans than I would have picked out a few weeks ago  :tongue:

 

And I really am looking forward to a sustained flat line in 2015...(...including more consistently collected data points...)

 

gallery_25678_963_34729.jpg

Merganser: Level 4 Anatidae Scout

STR 4 | DEX 5 | STA 5 | CON 7 | WIS 6 | CHA 2

Intro | Current Challenge: Train for Spain!

 Challenge 6: Back on Track...and Then Off Again | Challenge 5b: First-World ProblemsChallenge 5a: Make a Map | 

Challenge 4: Fly! (On a Bike!) | Challenge 3: Run!..(At All!) | Challenge 2: Stretch! | Challenge 1: Swim Faster! |

My Fitness Pal

 

"She was a woman who had wandered almost by accident into a life she had not quite intended for herself..." --Lawrence Osborne

 

"If it looks like a duck, and quacks like a duck, we have at least to consider the possibility that we have a small aquatic bird 

of the family Anatidae on our hands." --Douglas Adams

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Week 2, Day 2 (cont'd)

 

Regular breakfast and this week's lunch, and successfully eschewed both Bagel Tuesday and leftover Halloween (presumably) candy (including plenty of CHOCOLATE!) that someone left out in the kitchen

 

In the late afternoon we all had to leave the office and hike over towards the Zakim Bridge in the wind and freezing cold (no precipitation, though!) to get a company photo taken for our holiday cards; this is the first year we've tried this, so there were inevitably some logistical issues and it took a long time to get posed, photographed, reposed, rephotographed, etc.

 

And then the tripod blew over  :rolleyes:

 

Afterwards, the bosses invited everyone over to a tavern across the street for beer(s), but I went back to the office (and I wasn't the only party-pooper; several people had time-sensitive work to finish) and had coffee with Mini Moos instead  :tongue:

 

I was going to a concert that night, so at the end of the day I had a can of soup at my desk while finishing up at work, and then headed over to the coffee house nearby for cappuccino and chocolate coconut chunks. (And this time, I did get a peanut butter cookie, too!)

 

After whiling away some time there with my Kindle, I returned to the office and packed up my stuff to ride over towards the theater, stopping nearby at another coffee shop, where I just had a big cup of black decaf

 

This was all quite different than my customary pre-gaming routine of cozying up at one of my favorite quiet-ish bar/restaurants and having a couple of cocktails and wine and dinner of usually bread, cheese, etc., since I don't need to be doing that (well, ever, actually), and definitely not on a work night during a weight-losing phase

 

When I got to the show, I had one glass (well, "glass"; it was a plastic cup) of wine while listening to the opening act and then another during the actual show, and actually took 45 minutes to an hour to drink each of them, which is pretty impressive for me, and of course I mindfully recorded them in MFP, as well (and was done more than an hour before the show ended)

 

(Not impressive: either the Pinot Noir OR the Cabernet Sauvignon at the Wang Theater; yeah...shocker^_^)

 

Great show by Ryan Adams, though -- including some truly inventive artist-on-audience-member heckling (I have mixed feelings about whether I ever want to have an occasion to use the phrase "Go f--k yourself into a f--king black hole") -- and totally worth the 40-minute bike ride home after 11 PM in sub-freezing weather and into a headwind, to boot:

 

I would have liked to have been wearing a beanie under my bike helmet, and I was definitely missing glove liners for the first 15 minutes or so, but I was pedaling quite energetically (particularly when approaching green lights) (although not as fast as this guy, who is, after all, cheating!) and nothing felt cold or uncomfortable for the rest of the way home, which is a great development and possibly evidence that my cardiovascular system is improving: historically, once my digits get frigid nothing warms them up except prolonged exposure to a radiator, so being able to recover discomfort while I'm still outside is very promising

 

Since it was nearly midnight when I got home and I was feeling tired rather than wired, I skipped my scheduled evening purge/guitar practice/read/yoga routine and just brushed and flossed and put myself to bed

 

Oh, after logging into my gym account on the phone and canceling myself out of the Wednesday morning spin class I was planning to attend; getting to work and the gym for a 6:30 class requires getting up by 5, and if my body was at all inclined to sleep in a bit, I wanted to indulge it, since I haven't really taken any recovery time recently

 

Week 2, Day 3

 

Sadly, although I turned my alarm off, my body did wake up around 5 AM anyway, but since it didn't want to get out of bed particularly, I did doze a bit on and off before giving up around 6

 

(Some weird dreams: in one there was a murderer loose somewhere, so that's probably just a general anxiety dream, but it was succeeded by a dream with a more mundane and realistic source of anxiety: I had forgotten to bring my breakfast to work and was in some store buying hard-boiled eggs!!!)

 

Was a bit tired, but not too bad -- hard to believe midnight used to be my "normal" bedtime -- and appropriately sore from yesterday's bootcamp: those pull-up sit-ups hurt exactly where I expected, but also my triceps and traps, which is great!

 

I packed up my guitar and my meals and my bike bags and then started the process of dressing for what my phone claimed was 24 degrees Fahrenheit: a thermal layer under my jeans and turtleneck sweater, thick boot socks from REI, my cozy external bike layer, and my regular biking shell on top. And a beanie under my helmet! I wore my medium-thick gloves and was fine with those on the ride in (I did not take the river route)

 

But I also packed my lobster-claw gloves/mittens for later when it's darker and potentially colder again, as well as my scary face mask and a balaclava, since they were there and why not?  :)

 

Tonight I have a guitar lesson in Harvard Square, so I probably will take the river route at least part of the way home, but that will be another good test of my cold weather gear

 

(And it's a good thing I have lost weight recently, otherwise, I would not be comfortable trying to wear thermal underthings under my jeans!)

 

I also have a ticket to another concert tonight, but I will probably end up skipping it, since I really can't imagine having a strong desire to go back out after I get home from guitar class and should probably get to bed earlier tonight instead of having two late nights in a row, since I'm just not used to that nonsense any more

 

Plus, it will give me an opportunity to make up for skipping my new evening routine last night; the Boys and Girls Club "goodwill" truck is stopping by our apartment tomorrow on its monthly rounds, so I can get rid of my recently purged pile, and maybe add a few extra items from tonight's stuff purge

 

(And I definitely don't want to skip tomorrow morning's Turbo Ride! class; I love that class)

 

Main goal today is to not succumb to the very slight inclination to pick up a bottle of wine on the way home; the habitual parts of my brain have been whispering that I "should" make up for drinking "eh" wine out of plastic last night by drinking good wine out of glass tonight, but while, yes, I would like a wine experience with more ambiance and whatnot, I can also wait until, like Saturday for that

 

I may also try to avoid a snack that isn't the clementines I packed, but since I'll probably want cappuccino before I go to guitar class, I'll probably also want a snack

 

But as long as I continue to log everything, I'm being mindful by the terms of my Challenge  ^_^ 

Merganser: Level 4 Anatidae Scout

STR 4 | DEX 5 | STA 5 | CON 7 | WIS 6 | CHA 2

Intro | Current Challenge: Train for Spain!

 Challenge 6: Back on Track...and Then Off Again | Challenge 5b: First-World ProblemsChallenge 5a: Make a Map | 

Challenge 4: Fly! (On a Bike!) | Challenge 3: Run!..(At All!) | Challenge 2: Stretch! | Challenge 1: Swim Faster! |

My Fitness Pal

 

"She was a woman who had wandered almost by accident into a life she had not quite intended for herself..." --Lawrence Osborne

 

"If it looks like a duck, and quacks like a duck, we have at least to consider the possibility that we have a small aquatic bird 

of the family Anatidae on our hands." --Douglas Adams

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Oh, I like the purging challenge. It's so easy to accumulate so much junk that we don't need and getting rid of it all can be hard.

 

Yes, particularly since I've been living in a large apartment for many years: too much room to accumulate stuff and no moving day motivation to ever reduce its volume! #FirstWorldProblems

 

I'm hoping that committing to doing it daily will help me develop a habit of steady, continuous stuff-reduction, even if it's just little things. One thing my sister-in-law was trying to talk my brother into was a purging thing where you get rid of 1 thing on the first day of the month, 2 things on the second day, 3 things on the third, etc. That would probably be a really great way to address somewhat overwhelming projects like my book and CD libraries  :rolleyes: 

 

(I think I should also implement a standard "get rid of one garment when I buy new clothes", "get rid of one book when I buy a new book", etc. rule, too.)

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Merganser: Level 4 Anatidae Scout

STR 4 | DEX 5 | STA 5 | CON 7 | WIS 6 | CHA 2

Intro | Current Challenge: Train for Spain!

 Challenge 6: Back on Track...and Then Off Again | Challenge 5b: First-World ProblemsChallenge 5a: Make a Map | 

Challenge 4: Fly! (On a Bike!) | Challenge 3: Run!..(At All!) | Challenge 2: Stretch! | Challenge 1: Swim Faster! |

My Fitness Pal

 

"She was a woman who had wandered almost by accident into a life she had not quite intended for herself..." --Lawrence Osborne

 

"If it looks like a duck, and quacks like a duck, we have at least to consider the possibility that we have a small aquatic bird 

of the family Anatidae on our hands." --Douglas Adams

Link to post

Week 2, Day 3 (cont'd)

 

Yeah, I had chocolate peanut butter cups AND cappuccino before guitar class  -_- 

 

(And they were good!)

 

And guitar class was great, too: I'm really enjoying the group environment (as opposed to private lessons, which I did in the past), and our instructor is really great. Last night, after we plowed through "Hey Jude", she pointed out that we're making lots of progress and that we should remind ourselves of that when we get frustrated, and not beat ourselves up, using that old nugget of wisdom that those of us who tend toward negative self-talk can never hear enough, in any context in life: "If we talked to our friends the way we talk to ourselves, we wouldn't have any friends."

 

Too true. And I think that's one of the reasons I've committed to logging stuff as opposed to necessarily imposing strict rules: I'm being accountable for my choices, and mindful of them, but I'm trying to avoid judging them or overthinking (!) them

 

And she's all about the steady baby steps, too: she only wants us to commit to (i.e. make a calendar appointment for) 10 minutes of focused, uninterrupted practice, 5 days a week. And she's right: that's going to be a lot more effective than "committing" to 45 minutes 7 days a week and then actually DOING 20 minutes the night before class/lessons  :rolleyes: 

 

Really glad I signed up for guitar classes, and I'm getting a little more comfortable biking around with a guitar on my back

 

It was chilly last night, but not nearly as cold as Tuesday, so that was fine; I got to Harvard Square by the most direct route so I had time for my hot beverage and snack, and then rode home the sort of back way along the river and up the hill. Definitely a little more breezy by the water, and there were some frozen puddles of Monday's rain, but I only got off and walked the bike past one of them...because it took up almost the whole path and it was underneath the Eliot Bridge, where I've wiped out on ice before (and did NOT want to repeat with a somewhat expensive instrument on my back...speaking of which, until I get around to purging it, maybe I should start bringing my other guitar to classes...)

 

On the way home, I imagined enjoying a nice, warming cognac or Calvados-based cocktail when I got home (and also imagined the rhetoric I would use to talk myself into justifying it), but in the event I just heated up my planned can of soup and enjoyed it with sparkling water. I also successfully avoided snacking on pistachios or something while it was heating up, or continuing to eat afterwards (I was thinking specifically of a hard boiled egg) just because it would taste good, even though I was full of soup

 

Yay

 

(And since I didn't even get home until nearly 9, I definitely didn't feel like going back out into the cold for another concert, so that was a good call)

 

By the time I finished dinner and caught up with some (one) DVR backlog, I was ready for bed. And it was chilly in the apartment! So I skipped reading and yoga again -- which needs to stop -- but did find a few more DVDs I don't need to own and packed them up along with other stuff from my purge pile and put them out for the charity pick-up this morning

 

And then I went to bed and slept well. (And undoubtedly probably better than if I had made cocktail(s)  ^_^)

 

Week 2, Day 4

 

It was even warmer this morning (well, less cold, anyway), so I biked to the gym with just my regular layers and then stretched out before Turbo Ride! class with our motivating guy instructor

 

Apparently, this was the last week of a 12-week training cycle (so to speak), so today we did a little bit of a simulated race (with visuals!) with extended endurance sections, which was great. He repeated another oldie-but-goodie, too: "You need to get out of your comfort zone; that's where the change happens." We'll do a variety of "theme" classes until the end of the year, and then he'll start another 12-week cycle in the new year, which I'm looking forward to: that will take us right up close to my next bike trip adventure!

 

(And I am still sore from those pull-up sit-ups on Tuesday! I'll definitely add them to my new Sunday morning strength circuit! Go, triceps and traps!)

 

According to my calendar, I'm planning to go for a run tonight when I get home from work; I'm going to try to follow through with that so that I can be more likely to meet my 2-times-per-week goal (assuming that I follow through with my Saturday run/swim plan). I really want to see how limited my right hip/glute/whatever is, since that's what bugs me (even right now, actually; damned sedentary job!) and I want to see what kinds of distances I can plan for. Two times around the reservoir is a flat 5K, so I should be able to motivate myself for that; it will also give me an opportunity to wear my illuminated jacket for the first time, too. And then I'll make sauteed asparagus for dinner, and save the more time-consuming stuffed acorn squash for Friday/Saturday dinner.

 

Sounds like a plan.

Merganser: Level 4 Anatidae Scout

STR 4 | DEX 5 | STA 5 | CON 7 | WIS 6 | CHA 2

Intro | Current Challenge: Train for Spain!

 Challenge 6: Back on Track...and Then Off Again | Challenge 5b: First-World ProblemsChallenge 5a: Make a Map | 

Challenge 4: Fly! (On a Bike!) | Challenge 3: Run!..(At All!) | Challenge 2: Stretch! | Challenge 1: Swim Faster! |

My Fitness Pal

 

"She was a woman who had wandered almost by accident into a life she had not quite intended for herself..." --Lawrence Osborne

 

"If it looks like a duck, and quacks like a duck, we have at least to consider the possibility that we have a small aquatic bird 

of the family Anatidae on our hands." --Douglas Adams

Link to post

Yes, particularly since I've been living in a large apartment for many years: too much room to accumulate stuff and no moving day motivation to ever reduce its volume! #FirstWorldProblems

 

I'm hoping that committing to doing it daily will help me develop a habit of steady, continuous stuff-reduction, even if it's just little things. One thing my sister-in-law was trying to talk my brother into was a purging thing where you get rid of 1 thing on the first day of the month, 2 things on the second day, 3 things on the third, etc. That would probably be a really great way to address somewhat overwhelming projects like my book and CD libraries  :rolleyes: 

 

(I think I should also implement a standard "get rid of one garment when I buy new clothes", "get rid of one book when I buy a new book", etc. rule, too.)

 

Yeah, I was living in the same place for six years... there was a lot of stuff to get rid of when I moved. I didn't get rid of any media though, I just packed it all up.

Level 9 Amazon Druid
STR : 17 | DEX : 23 | STA : 22 | CON : 23 | WIS : 21 | CHA : 15
Challenges: Current, 8, 7.1, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3.1, 3, 2, 1
Battle Log

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Week 2, Day 4 (cont'd)

 

On Thursday evening, I actually did go for my planned run! It probably helped that I made a new playlist on my phone during my mid-afternoon cappuccino-and-chocolate break; and had a light-up jacket to look forward to trying out

 

Also, as I observed during my bike ride home, it was much more mild, temperature-wise, so I didn't even bring (or regret not bringing) gloves out on my jog. Which was not fast -- miles 1 and 2 were only a hair under 10:30, and mile 3 was around 9:40 -- but felt pretty good; my hip was in particular feeling less wonky than on Saturday

 

Dinner was sauteed asparagus and shallots with a couple of hard-boiled eggs, followed by guitar practice, book-reading -- I finished the second-to-last chapter; lots of recommendations that are totally in line with the core principles of Nerd Fitness, actually! -- and yoga-ed

 

(Oh, and also got my spending spreadsheet up-to-date; and during the day, I bought a new book and CD from Amazon; I really need to just keep a LIST of things that I want and get them ONLY at the point when I'm going to actually really going to CONSUME them...particularly since my frog book had just arrived in the mail)

 

(Also purged: nothing exciting, but I have three shelves of hair products in my bathroom medicine cabinet, but have been using -- only -- the same two products for probably at least 2 years now. It's hard to throw away things that cost not-insignificant money, but I did discard two products for enhancing curly hair, because: really? "Curly" hair? No.)

 

Week 2, Day 5

 

Friday was a bit back-setting, since I put a kettlebell down the wrong way during a set of single-arm swings and wrenched something in my lower back. Ugh. I finished the workout -- gingerly, and taking pains (pun definitely intended) to be particularly careful when getting up and getting down, but the actual exercises felt okay -- and had some trouble stretching to put on pants and shoes in the locker room, but got to work okay on my bike (although I DID feel every bump and other imperfection in the road there)

 

I felt OK during the day -- nothing too distracting while sitting -- but the bike ride HOME was not the most fun ever :P

 

Mostly because of my back (but partly because of the "brisk" wind coming off the river), I took a shorter, less hilly route home, since the things that were most aggravating my back were starting, stopping and going up-hill. (I would have considered leaving the bike at work if I had different bags, but my saddlebags are really NOT optimized -- nor should they be -- for shouldering on the train, and I thought that might be worse than biking.)

 

At home, I stowed my bike in the basement and WALKED to my -- previously scheduled, ostensibly for maintenance -- chiropractor appointment

 

(Fortunately, walking feels good)

 

Ugh. Kind of painful adjustment, but I also realized that MOST of the pain is in my RIGHT lower back, which is oddly reassuring, since my right side is always more sensitive/susceptible, and this means it's probably just an aggravation of my existing condition, rather than a NEW injury

 

Walked home with a detour to the grocery store for sparkling water, dental floss (I've been trying to use an off-brand, but it's very painful, doesn't get between all my teeth, AND digs into my generally slightly-chafed-from-the-wind fingers, which is not a great combination for compliance) and a couple of dark-chocolate peanut butter cups. Since I didn't get my cappuccino-and-chocolate break on a very busy workday

 

At home, I made another iteration of stuffed acorn squash, using millet instead of couscous; I scrupulously followed the millet prep instructions (including toasting it) and it was much better than the last time (i.e. more tender), and worked really well. Also had some pistachios while waiting for everything to cook, because I was famished

 

Dinner was delicious, if a little late-feeling, as was my chocolate and decaf Earl Grey; I had considered an aperitif before dinner (I  was specifically envisioning a Negroni) but decided that I didn't really need/want it, and stuck with my sparkling water

 

We watched a couple of TV shows from the DVR, by which time it was definitely bedtime, so: no guitar or reading (although since my back was still painful, I didn't really feel like sitting in my guitar chair anyway), but I did do some yoga to stretch my back a bit, plus a couple of specific stretches my chiropractor mentioned

 

Oh, and I sort-of purged something: I tossed my hole-y gym pants at the gym; a hole has been developing along the right inside seam for a while (like, a year; Gap exercise pants are sturdy!) and during single-arm swings my ring finger was actually catching on it; and during scorpions I could see it in the mirror. So, purged! (My exercise clothes chest here at home IS on my list of weekend-type purges, though; I'm sure I own way too many pairs of capris)

 

Slept OK except for getting up for about an hour at 2 AM to cope with girl-pains -- and since it snuck up on me with no warning (yay?) I had no drugs -- but eventually got back to sleep and slept in until after 7 AM, even!

 

Week 2, Day 6

 

Ugh. Actually feeling even worse, back-wise, this morning, which is not promising; I'm hoping that some of my pain is my cyclical hyper-sensitivity to any pain during my period. 

 

Dressed carefully -- pants and socks and shoes were HARD to do! -- then walked down to CVS for DRUGS!!! Then to Starbucks for an in-house cappuccino, and brought home coffee for the household where I did some dishes (although I didn't put away anything from the lower drying rack, because I didn't want to bend over) and made my planned breakfast: eggs, kale, last serving of the week of sweet potatoes and sausage

 

And contemplated my day, since my bike/run/swim plans obviously need to change, and since that being the case, I had more time for contemplation :P

 

Since walking feels OK, I'm going to WALK into the city, and bring my swim gear: if I'm feeling up for it, I'll go to the pool and do a little bit of back stroke interspersed with pulling crawl stroke: that shouldn't strain my back, and I need to work on not hesitating with my left arm, and isolation is good for that (also, on the plus side: my shoulder isn't bugging me today!). And in ANY case, I'll go to my girl gym and do the whirlpool/steam/shower/sauna circuit, after some stretching :P

 

Whoa, it's actually 10 AM already, so I need to get going! (Swim is feeling less likely) I'm going to a play at 2 today, and was planning to go out for a leisurely lunch beforehand (possibly including wine!), and although part of me wants to change that plan since I'm going to be exercising less, Rational Me is reminding myself that the important thing this cycle is tracking my intake; since I always eat more responsibly when I'm doing that, regardless of what kinds of "rules" I'm trying -- or not bothering trying -- to follow

 

Onward, and upward, remembering the last words I read in my Eating/Drinking/Overthinking book (well, the last ones I jotted down, anyway): "Finally, and most important, realize that change is a process, not an end point. You are always changing, every day of your life, sometimes for better, sometimes for worse. If you cultivate the kind of compassion and respect for yourself that we've been talking about in these chapters, then you'll be able to weather setbacks."

Merganser: Level 4 Anatidae Scout

STR 4 | DEX 5 | STA 5 | CON 7 | WIS 6 | CHA 2

Intro | Current Challenge: Train for Spain!

 Challenge 6: Back on Track...and Then Off Again | Challenge 5b: First-World ProblemsChallenge 5a: Make a Map | 

Challenge 4: Fly! (On a Bike!) | Challenge 3: Run!..(At All!) | Challenge 2: Stretch! | Challenge 1: Swim Faster! |

My Fitness Pal

 

"She was a woman who had wandered almost by accident into a life she had not quite intended for herself..." --Lawrence Osborne

 

"If it looks like a duck, and quacks like a duck, we have at least to consider the possibility that we have a small aquatic bird 

of the family Anatidae on our hands." --Douglas Adams

Link to post

Week 2, Day 6 (cont'd)

 

It took a bit longer to walk into the city than I anticipated, and my back was definitely in some discomfort -- possibly due to the extra clothes, shoes, etc. I was carrying -- so I just went straight to the girl gym and did the water "circuit" and changed into my theater-going clothes

 

I got to the theater neighborhood about an hour before showtime, and the pizza place I wanted to eat at was packed, so I went to the good old Beehive. I had a Negroni and a glass of wine and since I didn't want anything "brunch-y" for lunch, just a fried calamari appetizer (which also, nicely, was served on arugula with peppers, so: vegetables! :P) If I had to do it over, I'd probably have a cocktail OR wine, since I felt a little rushed at the end

 

The play (Stoppard's The Real Thing) was great: I am always amazed and humbled by talented people working their hearts out for an audience of about 50 people. I got a "glass" of wine during the intermission and took most of the second act to drink it

 

Afterwards, I walked back to the gym to pick up my extra stuff and since I was feeling a little buzzed -- although also NOT in much pain or discomfort, actually -- had a cappuccino at the Starbucks on the way to the train. (And because I was a little buzzed, I also had dark chocolate-covered Graham crackers :P)

 

I took the T home and while my leftover acorn squash and millet was heating up, made myself a Negroni-ish aperitif called a 1794: 2 parts rye, 1 part Campari, 1 part Carpano Antica. Definitely a keeper. Even J. commented that it smelled delicious. After dinner I had two dark-chocolate peanut butter cups (as planned), but also made another cocktail, which I probably should have skipped, since I was already tired AND had taken 3 Pamprin :P I didn't actually finish drinking it, but I did grab a handful of totally unnecessary pistachios because I was being unmindful

 

And I didn't log anything until Sunday morning, which I need to avoid doing in the future: log before or during consuming!

 

Being kind of wiped out and in some pain, I didn't do ANY of the other stuff I was supposed to do on Saturday either: no guitar, no purging, no spending-tracking, no reading my book, no yoga

 

Oh, well

 

Week 2, Day 7

 

My back actually felt worse this morning, which is not promising!

 

I left the house around 7, after making my grocery list, on foot, rather than my bike, and stopped at Starbucks for breakfast (coffee, yogurt, fruit) while waiting for Whole Foods to open, and while I was there I finished filling in My Fitness Pal on my Saturday eating and activities :P

 

Fortunately, I didn't need a ton (or even a normal weight amount) of groceries, but it was still quite uncomfortable walking home with them, and my walk definitely confirmed that going to my usual Sunday morning spin class -- and doing my scheduled strength workout -- was NOT going to happen. Blah.

 

On the plus side, it was a lovely morning for a walk and not going to the gym meant I was done with food prep for the week (breakfasts and lunches) by 12:30, including dishes. Yay. I took Aleve for my back before I started food prep, and sat against some ice for a while, with no apparent improvement. My next strategy (since I'm NOT going to use the wine-and-cocktails method today!) is 3 Pamprin and Biofreeze. I'm feeling a little less tight, and even if its psychosomatic improvement, I'm okay with that :P

 

If I was more diligent, I would do work-work this afternoon, but I am really not remotely inspired to do that; instead I'll plan to get into work as early as possible tomorrow morning, either on the 5 AM train or -- if I'm feeling better -- by bike, and be productive that way; even if I DO bike to work, I won't plan to go to the 6:30 spin class, so that'll give me productive work time in the morning 

 

(I will bring my swim stuff, though, especially if I don't bike commute, in hopes of some therapeutic backstroke after work Monday)

 

So for the rest of the day, I'll do some stretching, go for another walk, take care of my usual Sunday laundry, and catch up with guitar practice, stuff-purging, book-reading (and I already caught up with spending-tracking), and enjoy one of my favorite dinners: scallops and clementines and onions over spinach. (With sparkling water!)

Merganser: Level 4 Anatidae Scout

STR 4 | DEX 5 | STA 5 | CON 7 | WIS 6 | CHA 2

Intro | Current Challenge: Train for Spain!

 Challenge 6: Back on Track...and Then Off Again | Challenge 5b: First-World ProblemsChallenge 5a: Make a Map | 

Challenge 4: Fly! (On a Bike!) | Challenge 3: Run!..(At All!) | Challenge 2: Stretch! | Challenge 1: Swim Faster! |

My Fitness Pal

 

"She was a woman who had wandered almost by accident into a life she had not quite intended for herself..." --Lawrence Osborne

 

"If it looks like a duck, and quacks like a duck, we have at least to consider the possibility that we have a small aquatic bird 

of the family Anatidae on our hands." --Douglas Adams

Link to post

Week 2 Recap

 

Since I'm a hypochondriac, I spent several minutes scrutinizing the asymmetrical appearance of my hips/obliques/whatever-they're-called in a full-length mirror last night, wondering what a herniated disk looks like; but since I've managed to get through the morning (so far) without having to catch my breath because I moved a millimeter in the wrong direction, I think my back is finally on the mend (although socks and shoes were definitely still a little bit of an ordeal this morning)

 

And since it's raining, it isn't like I'm missing out on a particularly beautiful day for a bike commute :)

 

Unwanted forced rest aside, how am I doing with my missions?

 

* Just finished 3 weeks of mostly-diligent food tracking in My Fitness Pal; and since the only day I would do-over part of if I could was also the one day I didn't fill in until the day after, that's more evidence that timely tracking works well for me

 

* Still planning most of my meals and prepping as much as possible (and practicable) in advance: yesterday I prepped all of my breakfasts for the week and all of my lunches for the 4 days I'll be at work, and I shopped for Monday-Wednesday dinners as well, and I have a plan for Thanksgiving Day meals and only didn't shop for it yet because I wanted to limit the weight of groceries I had to carry home with my damaged back yesterday

 

* A little bit of drinking this week, but fairly minimal, although: next time I have an hour to eat before a matinee, I'll have a cocktail OR a glass of wine (not both), and although I backed off from the "definitely none at home" plan, one potent cocktail in the evening (especially if I'm taking pain medication!) is plenty; unfinished alcohol is really sad :P

 

* Bike commuted 4 days of of 5 last week, only skipping a day that was predicted to be (and was) torrential downpours all day; took a break from biking over the weekend due to my back injury, but that meant I got to enjoy the scenery more walking, right?

 

* Indoor cycled 2 out of 3-4 intended times, since I skipped once class because I was out late the night before, and the other because I was/am hobbling around

 

* Went to kettlebell bootcamp both times, as scheduled...and in the future I will put the kettlebells down properly :P

 

* Only ran 1 time this week instead of 2, since I had to cancel my Saturday plan; so I'm doubly glad I got out Thursday night (on top of being pleased with myself for going back out on a weeknight after the bike ride home)

 

* No swimming, since it was scheduled for Saturday, and my chiropractor told me not to, and because my walk into town took longer than I expected (see: "hobbling", above) so I didn't have time for even my limited swim

 

* Did my yoga stretches most nights, except when I was out late or feeling injured; stretching is good!

 

* Finished the Eating/Drinking/Overthinking book, and am ready to review it and start planning to implement some suggestions (although I may take a few days off to read one of my OTHER self-help-y books)

 

* Practiced my guitar most scheduled nights, although skipping a night because we were watching TV late was not something I should repeat :P

 

* I'm all caught up in my money-spending spreadsheet; and I really need to stop buying media before I'm absolutely ready to consume it: this is why there are wish-lists!

 

* And most days I did purge some stuff from my home or office; mostly little stuff, but that's OK, and I even got some of it out of the house, since the charity van stopped by to pick it up last week

 

So, after 2 weeks, I'm feeling reasonably en route to feeling accomplished, and like I'll be ready to meet 2015 feeling somewhat in control of my destiny  ^_^ 

Merganser: Level 4 Anatidae Scout

STR 4 | DEX 5 | STA 5 | CON 7 | WIS 6 | CHA 2

Intro | Current Challenge: Train for Spain!

 Challenge 6: Back on Track...and Then Off Again | Challenge 5b: First-World ProblemsChallenge 5a: Make a Map | 

Challenge 4: Fly! (On a Bike!) | Challenge 3: Run!..(At All!) | Challenge 2: Stretch! | Challenge 1: Swim Faster! |

My Fitness Pal

 

"She was a woman who had wandered almost by accident into a life she had not quite intended for herself..." --Lawrence Osborne

 

"If it looks like a duck, and quacks like a duck, we have at least to consider the possibility that we have a small aquatic bird 

of the family Anatidae on our hands." --Douglas Adams

Link to post

Week 3, Day 1

 

A rainy morning gave way to a mild but windy and residually wet evening (kind of my favorite weather, actually), and although I regretted not being fit to bike home or go for a run when I got there, I did walk about 4 miles of the way home (i.e. until I started to feel the beginning of a blister inside my left boot!)

 

Otherwise, the day was pretty much as planned: I skipped the free Monday lunch (and accompanying treats) at work, but did have two servings of chocolate, which was excessive for a not-very-active day...especially since I was still quite satiated from dinner (sauteed asparagus and shallot and hard-boiled eggs) that I wasn't hungry when I ate the dark chocolate peanut butter cups...although they were tasty :)

 

Practiced my guitar instead of watching a second TV show, and then resumed reading What Should I Do with My Life? which is (so far) basically an anthology of anecdotes about people who found their vocation/calling/whatever. I'm hoping it will get my brain thinking imaginatively for when I go back to Eating, Drinking, Overthinking to re-read it from the perspective of putting together a picture of Positive Me, and figuring out what she does for fun and profit (and some concrete "approach goals" and a path for getting to be her! Last night's chapter was particularly resonant, because it was about a woman who started changing her life when she was my age or just a bit older...and took a couple of tries to accomplish it :)

 

Totally forgot about purging anything until bedtime, so didn't -- although I put my discarded hair products out in the trash/recycling area prior to getting them out of the house Tuesday morning, and my roommate found 3 items that she will use, which was nice -- and just did my prescribed stretches and some cat/cow yoga stuff before putting myself to bed

 

Got to sleep relatively easily, but woke up repeatedly, mainly due to a restless digestive system (I couldn't identify any specific anxiety points that would keep me up); probably the chocolate, but I'll blame the asparagus and the, like, pound of Brussels sprouts I ate for lunch  :rolleyes: 

 

Week 3, Day 2

 

Oh, what a beautiful morning!

 

But since I still have to use my hands to lift up my right foot to put it over my left knee to put on socks and shoes, I took another day off from bike commuting; with a plan to try bike grocery-shopping after work this evening :P

 

Tuesday is usually kettlebell class, but I had already canceled myself out of that and instead did stretching and a 5K on the elliptical -- including some HIIT work -- followed by a therapeutic water "circuit" in the locker room

 

I also registered myself for the Wednesday morning spin class I've been taking lately; the spin bike should be at least as no-impact as the elliptical, which felt fine, and I know the instructor is planning to do a simulated race tomorrow morning, and I love simulated races in spin class!

 

Skipping Bagel Tuesday, as has been been intention/habit lately, although, oh, how I love a toasted sesame bagel with butter!

Merganser: Level 4 Anatidae Scout

STR 4 | DEX 5 | STA 5 | CON 7 | WIS 6 | CHA 2

Intro | Current Challenge: Train for Spain!

 Challenge 6: Back on Track...and Then Off Again | Challenge 5b: First-World ProblemsChallenge 5a: Make a Map | 

Challenge 4: Fly! (On a Bike!) | Challenge 3: Run!..(At All!) | Challenge 2: Stretch! | Challenge 1: Swim Faster! |

My Fitness Pal

 

"She was a woman who had wandered almost by accident into a life she had not quite intended for herself..." --Lawrence Osborne

 

"If it looks like a duck, and quacks like a duck, we have at least to consider the possibility that we have a small aquatic bird 

of the family Anatidae on our hands." --Douglas Adams

Link to post

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