Thursday, August 13, 2009
Good day out there, dear Sparkies! Another beautiful day in Paradise, right?
Well, okay. Maybe not Paradise, but close to it. I love where I live. You couldn't get me away from this area with a tow truck.
We get the Times magazine (until the subscription runs out, which we will NOT be renewing), and there is an article in it that claims exercise will not cause weight loss. Only food intake (or not) can bring on weight loss.
Now what IDIOT would believe that?? I'm telling you, it does not take a rocket scientist or even a study (which we taxpayers get stuck for) to know that when we exercise, we BURN CALORIES!
So what happens to our burned calories? Do they just jump back on once the workout is over?? I don't think so!!
I have been burning calories on my stationery bike, the rowing machine, dancing, marching, walking, aerobics, workouts with that nasty Heather and other videos of routines. I have used my big ball and my towels and my workout band.
I have done sit ups, stretches, lunges, squats, weights. I have done Yoga, Tai Chi (not too often with either of these methods of torture), and have gone on long hikes up and down mountains.
I have speed walked through Costco, and ignored the food freebies. I have twisted to Chubby Checker, Shouted with the Beatles, and the Locomotive with Little Eva.
I have gasped for breath, learned that women indeed do more than "glisten". I have sweated.
I am sure I am leaving some things out, but by now you get the jist.
So here this clown writes a full article saying that this will not help me lose weight, but that it WILL make me feel better. We need the author to get on Spark People.
Some weeks I don't lose weight, but I lose inches. Other weeks I lose weight and no inches. Either way, exercise has played a huge role in it.
I don't bounce all over like I used to before I started working out. There is still jiggling, but not bounce! My legs don't look quite as lumpy as before, and my calves are beginning to have delineation. Even my arm flaps are down a full inch, and they are stronger. I have little dents where my waist once was instead of rolls.
My clothes fit me better, and I can stand up and put my jeans on!! It has been years since I could do that. I don't even have to lie down on the bed to zip them up, either! And when I take them off at night, there isn't the wrinkled red line cutting into my skin either.
"This Spark Thing", as I call it, is working. I don't even have nightmares of Heather any more. Miss Smarmy hasn't smirked at me for a while, and Bossy Daughter sends me Spark Goodies instead of lectures. She does, however, sneak in a little cautionary tidbit about my nutrition, but not real loudly.
Last night I turned down a bowl of ice cream from my husband. While he ate his, I did deep side bends. He is a jerk. He does not play fair! He gorges himself on ice cream with chocolate sauce, oreos, BUTTER, chips and dips, waffles and syrup...........he can still get in to his Air Force uniform from 40 years ago. He is disgusting. He's got these long legs, slim torso, and says inane things like "anyone can maintain their weight by only eating when they are hungry". I have gotten quite good at telling him to "Just ZIP it!". And then he gets HIS smarmy smirk on his face. I'm telling you: Life is not always fun.
Today I did my workout. I am sure I lost some weight from it. I will keep on working out as well as eating the right stuff, despite that stupid magazine article. And I will watch the scale become friendlier, my clothes fitting better, and take the weight loss compliments I am starting to get with grace. And then I will put on MY smarmy face when looking in the mirror and say "SO THERE!!".
Monday, August 10, 2009
My Red Sox are getting a bit pink. I painfully watched them get trounced by the Yankees after a brief lead of 2-1. then it all went downhill from there. It seems that my guys are a bit tired out, worn out and in much need of rest and relaxation.
All teams have their slumps. I know I do. I went into a mini-slump after the grueling dye-ing workshop. That thing just plain wore me out. To answer your question as to whether I will be doing a lot of fabric dying, the answer is a very loud NO!!
Saturday and Sunday were pretty much passed with me lying on the sofa or sitting in my chair with the TV on, watching the games between cat naps. It was rainy out, which agrees with daytime naps.
I was even too tired to make fattening foods. Instead, we munched our ways through salads in large quantities, Oreos and ice cream in moderate, sensible quantities.
Today is gloomy outside, which will be great for that pot of chili I made last night. It is also a perfect day to do some playing in the quilt room.
Speaking of my quilt room, I cleaned it again. I have been looking for stuff ever since. I know where my fabric, books, patterns, rulers, and templates are. I know where the freezer paper, tracing paper and pencils are. I know where my UFO's are. But I cannot find the big bags to put the UFO's in. I distinctly recall moving them to a place where it only made sense to put them. I have no idea where that sensible place could be, and I need those bags so I can fill them with quilt blocks for the charity quilts on Wednesday.
Here is what is happening with my brain. I am upstairs in the quilt room, and think of going downstairs for something. I get downstairs, having no idea why I am there, but automatically head for the pantry. Now mind you, I am not hungry. I am on auto pilot. I get in to the pantry, look at all the shelves, and decide I want a drink of water instead.
I get my water, put the penny in the jar, look around and head back upstairs. I go into the office, check the computer for emails, get hung up on SP, and then check out the cat food and water supply and clean the litter box.
Into the quilt room I go again. I spot the UFO's, but decide I don't feel like working on them. They have been sitting there so long I have forgotten where I was with them anyway. They now are intimidating to me, and seem to have a sinister attitude eminating from the piles.
Ignoring them by leaving the quilt room, I go into the bedroom. I look at the bed, thinking of just taking a nap. I know I am not tired, but that bed sure looks good!
Resisting the bed, I remember that I worked out today, and did a lot of good for my body by doing so. Just going to bed doesn't seem to fit in with the planned scenario I had when I first woke up.
Oh Yeah! I was going to have a very productive day, wasn't I? Now just what was I going to do anyway?
I remember my plans vaguely, but none of them hold my interest any more.
I need to go back to my old plan of making a list of things to do tomorrow and adhereing to it in the morning. I am very productive when I do that.
There is too much of life to be enjoyed than to spend it in front of the computer or TV or taking naps. After all, I workout to be in better shape; why sabotage it by wandering through my days lackluster?
Time for me and the Red Sox to get our winning game back.
Saturday, August 08, 2009
There's no place like home! I have been waiting to be home since Wednesday.
The fabric dye workshop is finally over. I spent the week with some fantastic people, artists all. Their creative energy just oozed all over the place, and we fed off each other's inspirations.
Have you ever taken a workshop that gave you too much information and too many choices? This was one of those. Each day we would begin with the instructor telling us the processes we were going to explore. She would begin with showing us some of her work, carefully describing which colors she used, the methods for each piece, and what not to do as well as what to do. Then she would discuss the various dyes and methods, along with information about various fabrics and textiles, and how the dyes react on them. A whole lot of eye candy that left me on overload, and I didn't even get started yet.
We would begin with a frenzy, running around like busy ants, grabbing buckets, choosing dyes, snatching fabrics. We dyed in baggies, we layered parfait in buckets, we tie dyed, we fold dyed, we scrunched dyed, and we over dyed.
We dyed large pieces of fabric with three layers of dyes. We dyed clothing. We dyed mercerized cotton, wool, rayon, pimatex, silk. We dyed T shirts, sweatshirts, sweat pants, yoga clothing, dresses, jackets, hats, and still more.
Then we would break for lunch. Ah, a time to sit back, feed ourselves, chat it up, and then back to the dyes.
After lunch, Teacher would introduce yet another method, going through all the routine as before, only with the new technique.
So now we change our focus and begin to obsess over a new thing. The articles lay outside in baggies, on clothes lines, in cat litter trays. Their were some out on the concrete, allowing the sun to do its work along with the discharge products used.
I began with a two yard piece of mercerized fabric. I wanted to make a large piece that looked like the Autumn sky for a quilt I have planned. I use the parfait in a bucket technique. I am aiming for an ombre, where the fabric goes from light to dark along the length of it, all in the same color.
It didn't work. Instead of a steadily deepening color, I got blotches of color with white on it where the dye didn't reach. I gamely say I can still use it. HA.
I move on to discharge dying, and I have a whole lot of fun with that. I discharge on sweatshirts that I picked up at Good Will, so it didn't really matter if they "took" or not.
I did silk screening, and I did the heat transfer thing. I stamp on fabric, which proved to be harder than it looked. At least for me. My stamped fabric did not come out clear at all, but rather blurred.
I did silk marbeling on squares of silk 11x15. That wasn't my favorite thing. I have these marbled pieces of silk with absolutely no idea what I am going to do with.
I was fed well, and stayed moving through the entire day with the exception of during lunch and the morning and afternoon lecture time. I was a puddle by the end of each day.
I was on overload all week long, becoming so exhausted as well as brain dead that I can't begin to say what was on TV or what I read at the end of the day. I was definitely on Zombie overload, and my brain simply shut down.
Now I am home. There's no place like home. Home means that I don't have to run around all day and wear myself to a frazzle. Being home means I don't have to interact with others. Home means I can sit at the computer and do SparkPeople all day if I want. Or I can go to my quilt rooms and play. Home is where I listen to whatever music I want to hear and take naps. Home has my exercise routine on the wall, and my workout tools.
I don't have to take turns at home. I don't have to be cheerful at home. I can be a recluse, grumpy, quiet. I can shuffle around in my tattered slippers, don't have to brush my hair or put on make up. I don't have to be color co-ordinated with my clothing. Heck! I don't even have to wear clothing at ALL at home!
I can sit and get caught up with my mail. I can hold my catty girls on my lap for as long as they need it. I can turn off the brain, go on auto pilot and not be questioned.
And now I can close this blog and do my workout. After all, I am HOME!!!
Friday, July 31, 2009
It has cooled down today. Our normal weather has returned, and for that, I am grateful. So grateful in fact, that I did a bit longer workout today.
It all started with DH getting up and leaving for the three day Flea Market. He isn't going to be gone for three days; he will return sometime today. I know he will be dragging stuff home that will sit around for a while until I give it to some charity or other, but at least he is out and about today.
I put on my exercise bra, stayed in my panties, and began the workout plans. I spy my big blue ball. Today is not a strength workout day, but what the heck? I will do some ball exerecises.
First, I have to dust off the ball. That should tell you something. Then I get busy and do Hamstring Flexion, then on to Lying Hamstring Curls with Ball, and the phone rings.
Now I can either answer the phone or keep working out. I grab the phone, and it is a friend from CA who has never worked out in his life. He has called to let me know his latest surgery and illness report. Have you ever had a friend who just LOVES to talk about their surgeries and illnesses? Well, this guy is that friend. He starts in with all the details of his gall bladder surgery, beginning with the tests which indicated he might need the surgery. As he journeys me through the tests and Dr. visits, and then to the pre-op crap that he goes through, I suddenly interrupt him and say I am putting the phone on speaker so I can continue my workout.
He can hear me now, so I get back to the ball. I do Wall Squats with Dumbells and Ball, then on to the Kneeling Rollout with Ball. All the time he is talking about his woes. I grunt answers, and make huffing and puffing noises into the phone, but he doesn't get the message. So I stretch through his being released from hospital and all the woes of recuperation. I do a lot of extra stretches.
Wait a minute! This guy really hates talking about Politics.....mainly because it isn't about HIM, so I start talking about the Obama/Professor/Cop thing. I am in favor of the cop, and I really would like to have Obama make a decision as to whether he wants to be President or a Social Worker. This disturbs my friend, and he gets off the phone. Mission accomplished.
On goes the CD, and here comes the fun part. Of course, it is my favorite.......good old fashioned Rock and Roll. I love dancing to the music! It doesn't even feel like exercise, yet my body sculpting is beginning to show, especially around my waist.
That's right. I said "Waist"! I am getting one! I am able to see little dents in the sides of my body. I think my butt is getting a tiny bit smaller, too. But that might just be wishful thinking on my part.
I will find out tomorrow, which is weigh-in and measure day. Usually I dread those days, but I am changing my attitude toward them.
I think it is the dancing that is doing it. Did I tell you that today I added singing along with the music as part of my workout? DH isn't home, so he doesn't have to come rushing in to see if I am okay or being attacked by Banshees, so I am singing to the top of my lungs. It is FUN!! I think it makes my workout even more strenuous.
Who cares? We girls just love to have fun. It doesn't matter if I look like a bit like a bouncing elephant, nor does it matter that I sing off key. It matters that I am DOING it. It matters that I am LAUGHING. It matters that it makes me HAPPY. And it matters that it makes me MOVE.
I hope you find something that makes you sing loudly, laugh, happy and move!
Thursday, July 30, 2009
today I thought I would do a new thing. I would do a Yoga video. I am not going to tell you where I found this video, because I hold you in higher regard than that. Suffice that I will never do this video again.
I always think of Yoga as soothing, relaxing and calming. Of becoming "ONE" with the Universe. Of gaining grace, poise and peace. Of walking tall, straight and smoothly, the essence of tranquility in flowing white clothing with Yoga type leather sandals. I do not own such an outfit.
To begin, this guy with such a gentle voice begins telling me all the benefits I will receive within the next 20 minutes. I will become "aware", and will have clarity in my thinking for the rest of the day. I will be "ONE" with the Universe, and be able to feel my breath flowing gently through my body. I will be serene.
Then the instructions begin. He uses words I have never heard of to describe what I am supposed to be doing. Then out comes these three beautiful, skinny perfectly-poised young ladies, all in their one piece stretch yoga outfits, and they seem to have no difficulty in understanding his words.
I watch their moves, and do the "monkey see-monkey do" thing, figuring that after time, I, too, will be able to understand his words. I am doing this side bend thing, and concentrating on feeling my breathing enter into my back rib cage, and it feels good. I close my eyes for greater concentration. Yes, indeed, it does feel good, but when am I supposed to stop??
Opening my eyes, I see they are now down on the mat. When did he say to get down on the mat?? They are doing this thing where they bring up their right foot in between their hands while having the left foot (my ignorant side) stretched way out in the back, on my toes. Ok. I am willing to try that. Just a tiny little problem. My right foot doesn't reach up to the area between my hands. Oh. Wait a minute. I am supposed to be on my FINGERTIPS. Ok. I try to grab my leg and pull it up closer to my hands, and body says "Listen up, Chicky-Babe! Any more of THIS and we are going to tip over"! But I try just a teeny tiny bit more, and we tip over.
Moving on to what they are doing now. I don't remember them saying anything about standing up. But they are indeed up, at the front of their pretty mats, and they are spreading their arms wide and then reaching up to push the ceiling with their clasped fingers. Ok. I can do that. I am reaching up, feeling my breath flowing through the body when I hear him say "Embrace the shins".
EMBRACE THE SHINS???? Did he really say that? I peek, and sure enough, there they all are, bending over and embracing their SHINS. I have never embraced my shins in my entire life. I have banged them up, cut them, bruised them, shaved them, and put sun tan lotion on them. But I have never embraced them.
Keeping an open mind, I try to embrace my shins. I am doing great to be able to touch them, for goodness sakes! I finally get my hands around to the back, and am clutching my calves for all their are worth, when I hear "Push the ceiling up with your entwined fingers". Letting go of my calves, I struggle to straighten up and entwine my fingers and reach up.
This is much better. I like pushing the ceiling. I close my eyes, feeling my breath flowing down the courses of my body, and I am at peace. I am definitely "in tune".
What?? They are embracing their shins again. I try again, and this time realize I should be focusing on what he is saying in his smooth, gentle voice. I am feeling the breath flowing down my spine, but can't get it to flow down my legs. Maybe I am clutching my calves too tight, and shutting off the circulation? Relaxing my death grip on my calves, which I am sure will be a nice navy blue tomorrow where my fingers were, I pull myself up to standing. He inanely says to pull ourselves up slowly. Listen, Buster! I couldn't pull myself up any other way BUT slowly! You arenearly crippling me!
Onward to a new move. We tuck our elbows into the crook of our other arm, then wind the arms together like a serpent. Right. I finally get my arms all entwined, and now am supposed to be bending over and feeling the "gentle breathing flow across the upper back". I feel my muscles ripping apart back there. Straightening up, we do it all over, this time with the other arm slithering its way up into agony. My shoulders and back are screaming in righteous pain, while I am closing my eyes and trying to focus on the gentle breath flowing.
Opening my eyes, I now see they are down on the mat again. I wish this guy would speak English and use words I know the meaning of! But I get down, and then I am supposed to get up on my toes with my legs straight back while my arms are in the position to do pushups. I am becoming suspicious of this stuff. I take another peak, and there they are, doing the Dolphin Pose. I get my butt up in the air, my head is on the mat, and now I am supposed to be up on my toes. I have my eyes closed for greater concentration, because he is saying all this stuff about the breath and flow and becoming ONE. I don't feel like ONE. I am sliding forward on my mat, and it is pulling my hair out. My toes are quivering. My arms are shaking. I am DEFINITELY not ONE!!
I finally lower my wrecked body to the floor, rub the places where my hair was pulled out, and get my great moment of sanity: TURN THE DAMNED VIDEO Off!
I find myself sneering with an evil gleam in my eye, reach out, and shut that sucker off.
Limping over to the CD player, I flick that on. I twist. I shout. I sing. I have ARRIVED! I am now ONE!!
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