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Hero or idiot, just depends on how you look at it

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Title from Echolyn - “Settled Land”

I set some very modest goals for this BLC 21 challenge. In my post from January 6, just 23 days ago, I said that over the next 12-13 weeks, I'd get the weight down to 175, that I'd do 20 minutes a day of exercise, and that I'd do 10 squats and 10 lunges a day. Well, I'm not doing so hot at reaching those goals. The lunges, especially, are faltering, as I might do them twice a week. The squats, they occur more frequently, but it's not a daily occurrence. And while I'm getting exercise regularly, I've taken the last two Wednesdays completely off, failing to do a lick of exercise on the 16th or 23rd. That fact will probably force my brain to move my feet at some point today. Not sure in what direction, or in what motion.

But...there's a big but here. Two weeks into the official portion of challenge, I'm seriously challenging the goal weight I set in the first week of January. It won't happen tomorrow, I might not get there next week, but at the current pace, I’ll get to the 12 week goal in about four weeks. Of course, that doesn’t mean that the current pace will continue, nor that I won’t bounce in the wrong direction, as I have a habit of doing. But it means that there’s an off chance that I might be doing something right, even as I biff on what I’d intended to do.

Not sure whether to be heartened or annoyed by this dichotomy, so I’ll go with the first option. Plenty enough to be annoyed with otherwise.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

EMMAEKAY 1/30/2013 9:04PM

    You know what worked for me? Try to correlate exercise with other activities in your routine. Try doing 5 squats before brushing your teeth in the morning, then 5 lunges after. Do that same thing at night before bed. Doesn't have to be brushing your teeth, either - anything you do every day. I do squats while waiting for my lunch to heat up in the microwave at work.

Either way, keep moving forward. As long as you TRY to reach your goals, you're doing something right. You're only failing if you're not trying. :D

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1CRAZYDOG 1/30/2013 8:58PM

    Just keep moving ahead. Progress is progress. Adjust goals as you need to. Some days I feel like the stars and planets have to be in the exact right alignment @ the exact right time for the brain and feet to engage @ the same time! Other days it's not so bad. Go figure.

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CLPURNELL 1/30/2013 8:55PM

    Awesome job being above pace!!! Be proud of it!

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KING_SLAYER 1/30/2013 7:05PM

    Try doing the lunges as soon as you get out of bed in the morning and doing the squats right before you climb into bed at night. Shouldn't take more than a few minutes all together. Or try them during commercial breaks if you watch tv in the evening. You will only do them if it's important to you to do them.

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ain't no poet, I

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

thunder and lightning galore
wet shoes are no fun

Yeah, that's all I've got for poetry.

Hit the library today and grabbed some books to read. "I love you Beth Cooper" was one, partly because the title sounded like something that I thought they made a movie out of a while back, and because 5 lines into the book, 4 people may have died, and I was laughing out loud. Turns out it is a movie, as per the google. Given the 14% rating for the movie on Rotten Tomatoes, here's hoping the book is a lot better than what people thought of the movie. The other book was from the guy who went undercover into the mafia as Donnie Brasco, a tale that I knew did get made into a movie, since, well, I've seen the flick.

Caught a massive downpour on the way back from the library, en route to the gym, and was fortunate to watch where I stepped on the way out of my car. The spot where I'd normally step to get out of the car was a spot a new river had chosen to flow. Fortunately, that particular temporary body of water was a narrow affair, affording me plenty of room to step safely around it. I went into the gym with a thought that I'd run a bit, since it had been a week since I'd wogged. It didn't happen, as I ended up playing pickleball for a couple of hours, and tweaked a knee near the end of that time. Bit annoying how very inconsistent I am, but then again, having played all of 6 times, perhaps I should give myself a bit of time?

Now, when I say I haven't wogged at all in a week, that's technically true, but yesterday, I did manage to run a half mile at a stretch, and I did it in 4:46, a very surprising figure. Of course, it took me about ten minutes to fully catch my breath thereafter. That said, I think I could have pulled off another couple of laps (another 1/3rd mile) at or near that clip. Tonight, I saw an ad on line for a local 5k, and I actually considered it for a few seconds. Not anywhere near there yet, but...

On the way out of the gym, I went back to where I'd parked. Though it was pretty raining at a decent clip, the the river had abated somewhat. Unfortunately, my driver's side door has a busted lock, such that in order to open it when it is locked, I need to go to the passenger side door, unlock that, reach over and unlock my driver's side door, and then wander back to the driver's side to open the door. Guess where that river led? Not only did it flow exactly where you're thinking, it had formed a lake on the passenger side of my vehicle. Let's just say this wasn't a narrow, easily fordable lake. A couple steps in, a couple steps out, and the result was a soaked sneaker. But just one; the left shoe, no more than inches away the whole time, miraculously remained dry.

Hoping that sucker dries by tomorrow, as I think I owe myself a few laps.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

CLPURNELL 1/30/2013 6:29PM

    Soaked shoes are no fun! Good job on the half mile. that is pretty speedy!

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1CRAZYDOG 1/30/2013 9:58AM

    Had rain too. UGH Today . . . much colder, 3-5 in. snow and tomorrow, back to the Tundra with a high of eight degrees. Oh well. It's winter.

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KING_SLAYER 1/30/2013 2:59AM

    I absolutely hate getting a soaked shoe, so I feel for you on that! Here's to hoping that the knee feels much better come morning time and that the shoe is completely dry. Hate to see you miss your opportunity to run a few laps on the morrow.

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If pants fall in a grocery store, and no one sees it, is it still a NSV?

Monday, January 28, 2013

Short answer: heck yeah it is. Funny thing, it took me a while to recognize it as such, and then only after reading about Emma’s (emmaekay) Zumba adventures. She mentioned needing to Macgyver herself a new belt, and I thought about a time, long ago, when…well, let’s just set the scene, shall we?

Once upon a time, and a very good time it was, a moocow…wait, wrong story…it was a light and refreshing morning when our hero (me!) went to the gym. I remember it like it was yesterday, even though it was Saturday, a whole TWO days ago. I was wearing a well loved pair of sweatpants, so loved that I’d failed to replace the drawstring, which had fallen to the ravages of a washing machine a few months before. Owing perhaps to the shorts worn under the sweats, perhaps due to leaving my wallet in the car, no mishap occurred on the way to the gym. Afterwards, however, afterwards was a slightly different story. Unencumbered by gym shorts removed due to an incident with a water bottle’s wayward cap, and burdened by a wallet and phone in addition to the jingle jangle of my keys, the sweats had a looming date with gravity.

And this encounter would take place, not in the privacy of a vehicle, or within the safe walls of my domicile, but rather in public, at a grocery store. For, you see, I had need of a few sundry items. Of which sun dried raisins were one. In order to procure these items, I ventured directly from the gymnasium to the nearest Kroger store. As I set foot within its hallowed and marshmallowed halls (on sale for 99 cents!) I noticed the weight of the wallet, sadly a weight born not of monetary heft, tugging upon the elastic waistband, dragging it groundward.

It was, then, an entirely good thing that I only had need of those three or four items. It was less of a good thing that those items were widely spaced through the store, and I didn’t know where one of them was located, such that I had to wander a bit until finding a kindly aproned one who could guide my steps. For at each step, the waistband fell a few millimeters. After a dozen or so steps, millimeters were measured in inches. By the time I got to the end of an aisle, I had both hands in my coat pockets, trying to discretely return said waistband to its former heights. The discretionary movements weren’t always so elegantly performed; on occasion, direct action was required, with hopes that no one was looking.

Usually, people walk around with guts sucked in, a pretense at health. That day, the opposite applied, as the belly was pushed out in an effort to make the sweatpants behave.
Those ten minutes inside that grocery store were a hilarious torture. I felt grimy from the exercise, and grungy in those sweats, constantly wondering if anyone was looking at me, and internally laughing my butt off about the absurdity of the situation. I shouldn’t have worried at all, really, as it was a Saturday morning, and I was hardly the only one in sweats, hardly the only one looking as if they were dashing in for a quick pickup, uncaring about what the world thought of them. But hey, when your pants are falling down, you kinda can’t help but freak a bit, y’know?

But in retrospect…that’s a solid nsv right there, since these sweats didn’t previously have this problem. That offending waistband used to stay put, without necessitating hitching up. I’m not sure exactly where the pants misbehaved, as the tape measure professes no major differences below the belt since July. But, I’ll take it, and gladly so.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

KJDINSC 1/31/2013 9:13AM

    Partha, you crack me up!

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1CRAZYDOG 1/29/2013 8:55PM


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JR0124 1/29/2013 8:15AM

    I have accidentally flashed my neighbors carrying in groceries once but my hands were full and I couldn't stop so I just hopped in the door. Then I collapsed in giggles....

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NEW-CAZ 1/29/2013 3:02AM

Brilliant post. Gonna share this one!

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BLONDE2B 1/28/2013 10:51PM

    Love it! What a great NSV and what a great story! Are you sure you shouldn't be applying for jobs in writing?

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PRIZM96 1/28/2013 9:29PM

    emoticon Pants on the ground! Pants on the ground! Lookin' like a fool with your pants on the ground! emoticon

Except you're no fool in my book! What an awesome NSV! Great job!

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MARYJEANSL 1/28/2013 9:26PM

  Chuckle! I had a skirt do that once - at church. I walked around with one hand clutching the waistband to keep it on, in particular since it was a tad long, and I was at constant risk of stepping on the hem, which would have...well you get the picture.

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2LABS2LOVE 1/28/2013 9:22PM


Comment edited on: 1/28/2013 9:22:32 PM

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KING_SLAYER 1/28/2013 9:16PM

    You should have just let them go and kept wandering like you had no idea your pants were on the floor. If someone pointed it out to you, you could have just said "they do this sometimes", and kept on shopping! Grats on the pants falling down, has to be a good sign!

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CURTIOSITY 1/28/2013 9:14PM

    Ha! Thanks for the Wayback trip to UNC philosophy 101 as well as for the straight skinny on you trip to Krogers.

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STILLWATERSSB 1/28/2013 9:11PM

    LOL That was great! That happened to my stepdad once when he had lost weight. His pants fell down around his ankles in the midst of the grocery store and I had to pretend I wasn't with him!

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JULESJET 1/28/2013 9:04PM

    Haha! That is an absolute NSV for you!
And a very funny story, too!

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KANDOLAKER 1/28/2013 9:03PM

    LOL - great blog. Thanks for sharing. Needed a chuckle tonight. Here's to many more NSV for you!!

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ANDY_54 1/28/2013 8:10PM

    LOL--How's that song go? Pants on the floor! Pants on the floor! (obscure American Idol reference). emoticon

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KMM1123 1/28/2013 7:38PM

    Bwahahahahahaha! Thanks so much for sharing!

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SEXBOBOMB 1/28/2013 6:17PM

    LOL -- pants down on Aisle 7!
Congrats on your svelter self!

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KRISTA-GIRL 1/28/2013 5:58PM

    AWESOME blog and AWESOME nsv!! Way to go. :-)

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LEXIE63 1/28/2013 5:43PM

    Oh boy! I'm in danger of that with my jeans. LOLOL
And of course it counts as a nsv!
How could it not?

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MISTY_MOUNTAINS 1/28/2013 4:24PM

    This is the most delightfully hilarious thing I've read all day!! Thanks for sharing your misfortune... haha. It's a painful thing to let the old comfy sweats go, but now I think it might be imperative.

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EJRANVILLE 1/28/2013 4:23PM

    Where do you shop? Just want to be on the lookout ;)

Hey, NSVs are the best.

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EMMAEKAY 1/28/2013 4:15PM

    Oh man, that is probably the greatest NSV in the history of Spark. I thought my pantsadventure was hysterical, but this was excellent. I can totally imagine you furtively looking around, trying to hitch up your pants.

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DONNATINWV 1/28/2013 4:10PM

    You are a funny guy!! I haven't laughed this hard in a while! Thanks, I needed this.

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LAURAAT 1/28/2013 4:02PM

    Oh, how you made me laugh! I love your blog...and what an awesome, aweosme NSV!!! Sorry to see those old sweats go, all broken in and comfy to perfection. But at the same time, what a good feeling to be able to pick out a new, smaller pair! emoticon

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ROBERTSONHLA 1/28/2013 3:53PM

  emoticon I am laughing with you, I promise!

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WHOVIANGIRL23 1/28/2013 3:52PM

    Laughed so hard I actually started coughing.

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The weather as a sad excuse

Sunday, January 27, 2013

So it was snowing pretty hard (and unexpectedly, as I hadn't looked at the forecast for today) when I finally decided to go to the gym, and I let it stop me, rationalizing that I really didn't want to go anyway. I mean, I'd sat around reading all day, a bit of laundry, a bit of lunch breaking up the turning of the pages, until around 5 pm, when big ten basketball took over for the evening. I watched Iowa nearly knock off Purdue, and then saw my Michigan Wolverines stake a claim to the #1 ranking, for the first time since 1992. And then, at 8, I decided I might as well go to the gym, as after last weekend's spasm of running, I hadn't done any more. So i got changed, and then went to close the bedroom curtain (no, I wasn't flashing the neighbors, I changed in the bathroom), and happened to glance out the window and saw my car under a decent layer of snow. So I go and open the door and look outside, can't really see much as the light is out, and stick my head out the door, and get pelted by a very fast falling snow. That's all it takes to dissuade me on a night like tonight. There's a Red Wings game on. I can do a spell on the old exercise FRICK! the blackhawks just scored to win in overtime, the bastiges! bike (real time blogging, dont'cha know?), and I've got this new exercise ball that I've been using as a footrest for the past 40 minutes, I suppose I should actually sit on the darn thing and stretch something now. And this resistance band, which I rescued, along with its mates, from a box I hadn't looked in during the past month, maybe I could do something with that, too. But first, a cookie. I'm grumpy about how the hockey game ended. Harrumph!

3 hours later edit: seeing descriptions of the weather as "it's raining ice out there" makes me think maybe I made the right call by staying in, after all.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

WHOVIANGIRL23 1/28/2013 12:03PM

    HAH! Real time blogging, isn't it fun? It's very entertaining to read as well. I can't say I use the weather as an excuse, because I work out at home. But... I use anything else as an excuse...

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SHRINKING_SARA 1/28/2013 10:40AM

    When the weather gets nuts -- just workout watching the hockey game. There's no reason you couldn't do strength training or core workouts -- Spark even has some great free 15 minutes videos to do just this. Plus even if its small, it gets rid of the demon in your head yelling at you to work out.

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GARDENCHRIS 1/28/2013 6:32AM

    it was raining ice! Same here in Illinois!

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RANDOMLY_HONEST 1/28/2013 6:27AM

    I also tend to use the weather ( and all the little sniffles that go with it) as an excuse. But even if you can't get to the gym, you can still exercise at home. If nothing else, march/jog in place while watching the game.

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KMM1123 1/28/2013 12:33AM

    At least you have the weather as an excuse to rely on. It's been absolutely beautiful down here and I still don't get out to walk very much. I really don't deserve to live in this climate. I bitch and moan when it's hot and humid. I whine when it drops below 70. And now that the weather has a special Utopian feel to it... I stay barricaded inside. I'm hopeless.


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When will then be now? Soon! (perhaps)

Saturday, January 26, 2013

BLC bloggy topic asking along the lines of “how are you going to feel when you get to your fitness/weight goals?” And the short answer is, “Heck if I know!” (aka HIIK!, a very useful acronym).

The extended edition of this flick has alternate endings, one where I get to my (just defined on Thursday) goal of reaching a healthy weight as defined by BMI, and then deciding that I’m close enough to being under 150 and just go for that instead. There’s a second ending where I reach that weight, and then think, hey, I should build some muscle, and bulk back up a bit. Might have to save that idea for a sequel. And then there’s the theatrical release where I reach the goal weight and then just maintain ad infinitum. Of course, since we’re in the middle of the movie right now, you’re going to have to imagine it as if we were in that scene from Spaceballs (0), watching the current action.


Then there’s the entirely different aspect of “fitness” goals, which entails, being happy with what I have (1), bodywise. That might be a longer term project, since there’s more mental baggage on that airplane than on the single prop “simply weight” puddle jumper. It’s perhaps not quite as complicated as the Dreamliner and its ‘splodey batteries, but happiness for those with body image issue can be a moving target. So, where is that straight line, that I can hold up to the light, and say, “Yes, this is all right”? (2) HIIK! I’m hoping that somewhere in one of those three alternate endings, there’s a boarding pass to this particular flight of fancy.

It’s part of the reason that I didn’t start this trip with a hard and fast goal, that I wanted to lose THIS MANY POUNDS. For me, doing something like that would have been counterproductive, as in this particular endeavor, I’m better off with the open ended “just keep swimming, just keep swimming” (3)….I mean, “just keep trending downwards” approach. That lets me shrug off the upward bounces, or the plateau that I may be coming near the end of. As long as there isn’t that significant, and lasting shift upward, it’s all good. Sure, there are physical benchmarks I have in mind (less belly fat chief on the list, perhaps), but the more that I think about it, it really does seem like a case of “I’ll know it when I get there”.

And in saying that, maybe I’ve made a mockery of the entire HIIK! premise of most of this entry, that I haven’t a clue of how I’ll feel when I reach my goals. It sure does sound like the bottom line is that all I want is to have my peace of mind (4). So when I get there, when the war against the scale ends, when the war inside my head (5) ends…that’s when I’ll have achieved my goal. When I feel peace.

The songs/clips that flitted through my head during the construction of this post
0) Spaceballs: www.youtube.com/watch?v=EdHGS

1) King crimson: www.youtube.com/watch?v=kkWMf

2) Spock’s Beard www.youtube.com/watch?v=MD-8o

3) Finding Nemo: www.youtube.com/watch?v=cxB_T

4) Boston: www.youtube.com/watch?v=OaR2J

5) Dream Theater: www.youtube.com/watch?v=cp4hi

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

ADZY86 1/29/2013 6:09AM

    I have no idea what my goal looks like either. I set a random goal weight, not based on BMI or anything like that, which I will reassess the closer I get. I think I am aiming for a clothes size though, rather than a weight. But who knows?! I agree with CLPURNELL: I'm hoping one day I will just be able to look in the mirror and say 'you know what, you look good, you can maintain this, stay right here'. Fingers crossed...

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CLPURNELL 1/28/2013 9:09PM

    The goal is as you have said is to find that magic spot where you look in the mirror and say you know what i am happy here. We all have to find that we guess by throwing around a number but in essence we are all looking for that self satisfying body image whatever that is.

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WHOVIANGIRL23 1/28/2013 12:15PM

    What do we do, we swim.. swim...

I'm with you on the HIIK thing. The "closest" I ever got to goal was 184 (And my goal is between 120-130, so not really that close..) and I know how wonderful that felt. But now that I've ballooned up to whale size, I feel like goal weight is unattainable, like I'll never get there. But, I'd love to know how it feels..

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KING_SLAYER 1/27/2013 6:34AM

    Great blog. I get what you're saying here. I do have a weight goal, but it was an arbitrary number that I chose almost 2 years ago. I think I'd feel better surpassing it by 10-20 lbs, but I want to hit that original goal before moving the goal posts further down field.

The mental baggage and body issues are the much more difficult tasks to wrap the head around. I know I'll never look like Daniel Craig or any other ideal that has been set before me, so when will I be able to accept me as I am? That is the much tougher question and the answer may take longer to find than any weight loss journey.

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