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Aaaaand BOOM it's a week later

Saturday, January 14, 2012

So, in the land of random thoughts that I MIGHT have shared, had sleep not intruded on previous nights.

On Thursday night, I had the thought that though it feels like cheating, there's something kind of fun about weighing yourself just after a good bout of exercise, and seeing that number, however illusory it might be, lower than what you might have spied earlier that day or earlier that week.

Friday, I had the thought that it's absolutely precious to have someone around who you can feel safe in spilling out a few thoughts that otherwise stay generally bottled up.

Saturday, I had the thought...wait, today is Saturday...Saturday, I'm thinking it stinks being at work on a Saturday (for a job that doesn't usually demand it)...silly deadlines...so I'm taking a break to share such thoughts. And on Sunday, I might have a repeat of such a thought as on Saturday, and will have to come up with other thinks to share.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

CATHOLICCORGI 1/15/2012 3:58PM

    Sure hope you are having a decent Sunday!
emoticon emoticon

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YOITLE 1/14/2012 8:13PM

    Why does this remind me of Winnie-The-Pooh having a think (in the nicest possible way)? Hey, if getting on the scale at a motivational moment works for you, do it, unless you're likely to rage if the scale doesn't comply with your expectations. Not fun to be working through the weekend, no time to decompress or listen to that good music of yours. As for having someone to really listen to what you are really thinking - a treasure more precious than rubies, so few have it.

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The new (?) fitness tracker is more like it

Sunday, January 08, 2012

Ok, so maybe it doesn't calculate how many calories I might have burned, but it's far better as far as being simple to use, and just allowing me to say, yes, this is how much I've done, as opposed to making a chore out of figuring out which particular wii game - actually, no, specific exercise within a wii game - that I may have played, and then repeat the process for each specific exercise I might have dabbled in. Now, I can just say, played with my wii for a half hour, and boom, spark minutes on the board.

Has that 'quick' fitness tracker always been there, or have I just not noticed it all along? I mean, any weight loss the first three months I've been perusing this site has been as a result of paying attention to food, not because I've begun legitimately exercising, a fact that gives me hope for further reductions, should I ever manage to do so.

That said, the spark minutes I've logged are far less than I've actually done (as is the case with caloric intake), because I felt it a pain in the ass to log those minutes. So this works as being better for me. That said, I still don't know how to interpret how whatever exercise I've done translates into real fitness minutes. For example, Saturday night, I went to watch the Detroit Lions' first foray into the playoff in 12 years (a disaster in the second half, enough said) with friends, and then spent the hours between 10 PM and 1 AM playing various games intermittently on their XBox Kinect system. I logged 30 minutes of activity, but I was probably active on there for half the time, but as it's a game, it didn't feel necessarily like an hour plus of exercise. Despite that, I can feel my arms complaining from the quarterback challenge portion of a football game, and the various swipes, stabs and slashes required to be a decent Fruit Ninja (fun game!). I WILL be sore tomorrow, I already know this, but how does that translate into fitness minutes for tracking purposes?

Suppose that's a translation I've got to figure out, since I'm certainly planning on becoming more active in the coming months. Let's see how that turns out.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:


    Yes it's always been on the front page. I do personally prefer using the one on the Fitness page and I like to see calories burned

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AHTRAP 1/8/2012 3:57AM

    On the fitness tracker page, it's the quicktrack fitness minutes widget, which allows you to just enter a number and an association in separate fields. I really hope that hasn't been around, because it's right there in front of your face.

As for Fruit Ninja, I've played it before on a smartphone, where you slice the fruit by drawing a finger across the phone screen, but it is whole different beast on the Kinect, full arm movements, and body movements too, to catch the fruit in the corners. MUCH more fun. Haven't a clue if it's available for Wii, though.

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YOITLE 1/8/2012 3:33AM

    Fruit Ninja! Is that a Wii game? I bet I could get the house elves interested in that. What is the quick fitness tracker

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Didn't realize I was broadcasting beyond the self-defined borders.

Saturday, January 07, 2012

Guess I knew that each new blog post was available for perusal to all SP members for a limited time if they happened to click on the new blog post links on the front page, but other than that, I thought what I'd been scribbling was limited to just the groups I'd actually been interacting with. That theory falls apart at very simple scrutiny, as those I've interacted with most don't live anywhere near Madison. But, there you have it, unless there's reason to actually explore your beliefs, you tend to stick with what you think you know. Explains quite a bit about politics, but let's not go there, shall we? :)

Anyway, I'm noshing after midnight, musing on how there ought to be laws governing when you're allowed to go to the grocery store. Such as, no grocery shopping when you're hungry. Or, no grocery shopping after midnight. There are situation, such as these, when the will power is left in the car, and everything looks good, or at the very least, justifiable. Like, one box of cheez its for $4, but 8 keebler and sunshine products for $16? That's like, half price and stuff! So, two random new cracker products, a couple different cheez it flavors and oh, hey, Keebler, gotta have the cookies, since the elves worked so hard to make them. Granted, this haul will last me months (like the 8 boxes of ready oatmeal bought months ago, of which I've consumed one and change), but it wasn't really necessary, and it came about as a result of hitting the store in a vulnerable state. I was HUNGRY!

Wasn't the greatest day, food wise, as I did a fish fry (is that just a Wisconsin/upper Midwest thing? I'm from Michigan, and I wasn't really aware of any such practice before coming out to Madison. Did I just miss out all the years prior?) with some of my closest friends in the area. Good times were had, the cod (cods? What the plural of cod, anyway?) did not die in vain. An enjoyable night, all told, with an amusing error, wherein I gave the bartender a 50% tip - grabbed a round of drinks, totaling $12, change came back as a $5 and three $1 bills. Intending to tip $2, I retained two of the bills for myself, and left the other two on the counter. Wasn't until an hour later I realize that I only had $2 cash left from that transaction. Oh well, as busy as the bar area of the supper club was, the guy was earning whatever tips he was getting.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:


    Hey there! I'm from Waukesha so we're really close! We have had Friday night fish frys for as long as I can remember. I think they might have started as a Catholic thing but they're everywhere. Problem is, I don't like fish. Oh well! Glad you had fun!

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POETLKNG2LOSE 1/7/2012 10:30AM

    You can always choose to have your fish baked and not fried too if they have that. And always remember to eat before you go shopping so you don't buy so much.

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WENDYSPARKS 1/7/2012 8:55AM


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JET150 1/7/2012 8:42AM

    Someone (from Wisconsin) has even written a book about Friday night fish fries. They've been going on forever, i believe. I think my sister goes to them in Missouri too though. I always thought it was a Catholic thing, since back in the day no meat could be eaten on Fridays.
I too am incapable of passing up a "deal".

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YOITLE 1/7/2012 8:00AM

    Glad to see you are up and about again. Gives me hope. Where I'm from, eastern Pennsylvania, fish grow in the freezer already batter-dipped, but we has our funnel cakes at the carnival and lots of legacy German dishes.
I've had to make a conscious decision not to shop when hungry, even if it's just a bowl of brown rice unadorned before I hop on the bicycle to get groceries. Saves wads of cash and inches on the waistline. I also have mini packs of almonds I carry for just such emergencies.
I bet this is something you can invent a fix for.

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WINNIE1978 1/7/2012 7:42AM

    Anyone that has "friended" you can also see when you post blogs on their "friends feed", which tells them when their friends have updated their status, posted blogs, received trophies, etc.

I agree that we shouldn't be allowed to grocery shop while hungry... that's always a tough one for me too because everything looks good!

I always thought fish fries were more of a southern thing, but I guess they are more widespread than that.

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It's past midnight, why am I still up?

Thursday, January 05, 2012

Well, for one thing, I'm a night owl, as I think I might have previously chronicled. For another, I've been ill the past two days, bad off enough to stay home from work, which is extra bad because a deadline looms two weeks away. I think I might have to pay the time back on the weekend, lest I get to the ten day mark and panic. Being down with the sickness (not in this sense, unfortunately - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=09LTT0xwdfw
) also means I've spent significant portions of the daylight hours of the last couple of days sleeping.

Funny thing, I felt well enough when I woke from a nap around 2 pm today to try to venture out to a store nearby to remedy an appalling lack of gatorade/soup/crackers in my apartment. It was not exactly meant to be, though, as I'd apparently left my car's dome light on when I last used it on Monday. 40 hours of continuous operation does not a happy battery make. Oops. Fortunately, the manager was in, and the maintenance guy was around, and was able to help me out, otherwise I might have had to post a sign, and then hope, beyond someone just being willing to help, that they would knock on my door at some point when I was awake.

I made it to the, got my gatorade and my soup, and wandered about a bit in a fog, completely unable to recall what else I'd gone there for, a fact which pretty much justified the decision I made at 8 AM that work was a no go for the second day in a row. I came home and was pulling into the garage when I remembered that I'd forgotten my crackers.

And then I napped again, feeling rather pathetic for some reason. That doesn't make sense, really, when one considers the general reason that I was home in the first place. But there you have it.

Oddly, I have neither gained nor lost weight. Not sure what I expected. This cold/allergy/whatever that had my head spinning didn't really affect the appetite Tuesday, and though I had a very slow start to food on Wednesday, the final intake was probably well within range. I did more in the way of cooking than I've done in a while, as I grabbed some potatoes and a cauliflower while at the store, and wonder of wonders, I actually used them to the purpose I bought them for, namely frying, and tossing together with some chicken. Which I also cooked.

This is remarkable only because I so rarely cook. It just seems to take so much time usually. But these past two days, I had plenty of time, so...anyway, I used too much olive oil (the only type of oil I have in my place, apparently, and the works turned out a bit greasy, if tasty. My meat selections often are determined by what's on sale, and this time that was skinless, boneless chicken thighs, so I probably should have separated those and cooked them with just a dab of oil (or less). But, hey, it was tasty, and when I deign to cook, that's still the bottom, and only line, really.

Here's the thing though, calorie wise, what does approximately 1/3rd of a mix of (10 oz chicken thighs, half a cauliflower and two potatoes) cooked/semi fried in olive oil add up to? Food tracking has been an issue for me because I usually eat lunch at work, from a cafeteria that provides general (cal/fat/protein/carbs) info for most, but not all of its offerings. And, well, because the markings down of every little thing crossing my lips hasn't become habit yet. Made some effort towards it today, but I'm absolutely clueless about how many cal/fat/protein/carbs I might have put away with this dinner.

It'd be useful to know, as I've got plenty of it left over for tomorrow's supper. I fully intend to make it to work and have lunch there. I suppose I ought to try and get to sleep and make that a more likely outcome, eh? G'nite!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

YOITLE 1/5/2012 8:48AM

    Only 10% of what I usually eat is listed in the nutrition tracker, so I go to the recipe calculator and put the ingredients in there. It gives me all the nutritional info. It takes time, so I only put in the recipes I make regularly. Otherwise I try to guesstimate what a given food might match up with a listed item in the nutrition tracker.

Kudos for cooking for yourself. It's a start, olive oil and all.

Surprise yourself!

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WINNIE1978 1/5/2012 5:33AM

    I hope that you feel better soon!

As far as the tracking goes... the best way that I've found to do it is to measure or weigh everything. I have a cheap, digital kitchen scale that I use mainly for meats and I think baked potatoes are listed in grams so I weigh those too. I will weigh my chicken breast and then track it by the weight. For everything else, I use measuring cups. I'll actually measure out 1 cup of cauliflower or 1/2 cup of peas or whatever I am eating that day.

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So where do we begin?

Sunday, January 01, 2012

There's an album called, "A Pleasant Shade of Gray" by the band Fates Warning. It's one of my favorites, certainly among a top 20 all time on my list, and possibly in the top 10 (that's an exercise I haven't undertaken in a long time). I love it for its dark moods, and general sense of introspection, and reflection, which is encapsulated in the album's opening lines:

So where do we begin?
And what else can we say?
When the lines are all drawn,
What should we do today?

the ~2 minute first section can be viewed here:

Those are words that cross my mind often enough, as I use them as a starting point when up against new situations, whatever form they take. And so it was this morning, waking up after last evening's fun, that I thought of these lines in the context of the new year. 2012 will be a year of changes for me, that's already certain, but exactly what form those changes will take, I don't know yet. So I'm looking forward, with some trepidation, but also with anticipation.

I'm hoping, though, to take care of myself better than I have in years past. That will include continuing to use the spark people site - the fact that I have visited it on a more or less regular basis the past three months suggests that it's not just a fad in my book, like so many sites I take an interest in, but eventually just stop checking in on. I don't make resolutions, but I'm planning on ending 2012 weighing less than the 198 pounds I carry into the New Year. I've made it to the initial 195 goal weight twice so far, so it's certainly possible, but holidays have conspired to keep me from legitimately breaking through. Now that those are out of the way, let's see if I can get there, get under, and stay under (and hence, give me a relatively easy win on my not-a-resolution :)

I also resolve to stop smoking, which should be pretty easy, as I don't smoke, and never have. I suppose that might be cheating, though.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

YOITLE 1/2/2012 9:18AM

    I must look up that band. I am woefully out of date with music (by about 2.5 decades). It sounds very interesting. I agree with BACKUPAGAIN that the real changes will take place when the inner scenarios get changed. My particular bugaboo is getting stuck on a number I wish to achieve by March 2012. The unspoken wish is once I achieve that number, I won't have to do all this hard work of shopping for and cooking healthy food or walking my feet off. DUH, maintenance hasn't registered as I'm still in the middle of the forest.
I need regimen of thought workouts, then the rest of it will fall in line quite naturally I suspect.

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BACKUPAGAIN 1/2/2012 2:40AM

    Hahah, love that final resolution, and I'm with you in making that one... mind you, I don't smoke either, but I won't tell if you don't, ok?
Wishing you lots of determination, motivation and dedication, because with those you can't help but succeed in the 'other' goals, the non-cheating ones... I gained the 4lb I managed to lose in December in the period between Christmas and New Year. This year though, I am determined not to do what I've done so many times before - just tell myself it's never going to happen, so I may as well just give up and quit trying. This year I am going to make sure I keep trying, because I am determined to reach my goal weight, and stay there!
We can achieve anything we want if we're determined enough to work towards it!

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