Tuesday, February 12, 2013
Iíve returned from Belize and I had a wonderful time. The pool was the best thing about the place as it was approximately 270 feet wide. I figured out early on that it took me 10 minutes to do 4 laps so every day, I tried to do at least 12 laps altogether. I could probably have done more than 4 laps at a time but I just didnít have the interest to do more than that at one time.
Pool view showing the width
The one thing I didnít know ahead of time about this resort was the length of time it took to get there. I had gotten up at 1:00 a.m. at home, picked up by the limo at 3:30 a.m. and boarded the plane in Toronto at 6:00 a.m. We were supposed to leave at 6:20 a.m. but the flight left Toronto an hour late at 7:20 instead of 6:20.
There was a stopover in Cozumel, Mexico and we were made to get off the plane so they could clean it and then we had to reboard it to get to Belize so we got to the main airport in Belize City around 1 p.m. And, then, much to my dismay, we were told that we were going to be flying from Belize City to Maya Village in a 12-seat Cessna! I hate flying and this was something that I wasnít looking forward to (Iíve never been in such a small plane).
Much to my surprise, I didnít actually hate it until the descent started. It was then that it was buffeted about with some turbulence and I thought I was going to be sick. So, I just shut my eyes and concentrated on breathing. After we landed, I had a headache. The plane ride took about half an hour and then we were put in a shuttle bus and transported to the resort for another half an hour. We got to the resort around 2:15 and I was exhausted but we didnít get our rooms yet. We were given welcome drinks and then shown the way to the pier to have some lunch. We finally got into our rooms around 3:15, at which point I had been travelling for approximately 12 hours and I was thoroughly exhausted. To no oneís surprise, I was in bed and asleep by 9:00 p.m.
Before, I left on vacation, I blogged about my plans while away and they were:
1. Exercise for a minimum of 1 hour every day
2. Indulge myself on the first full day (Tuesday) and then eat responsibly for the rest of the trip
3. Participate in as many of the BLC challenges as possible and record my points faithfully
4. Read a minimum of 5 novels
And, this is how I did:
1. The only two days I didnít get an hourís worth of exercise were the travelling days. On February 4th, I got no exercise although I did manage to get almost 8000 steps, which I thought was pretty good considering I spent a huge amount of the day sitting. And, on February 11th, I only got 40 minutes in because we had to leave the hotel at 8:30 a.m. for our trip home.
And, I actually got 2 hours on two days and 1.5 hours on a third day so I was happy with that.
2. The food part didnít turn out so well as the fitness though. There wasnít a lot of choice when it came to which dishes to eat. Each meal only had 4 or 5 dishes to choose from and only twice was there a green salad and once there was steamed veggies. The food served most often was different rice dishes and lots of chicken.
But, the good part was that the plates were huge and so typically, I didnít go up for seconds. And, if you wanted dessert, most meals it was pineapple, papaya and watermelon and sometimes orange slices but a couple of times, they had different types of cake and I had that three times.
The best meal we had was grilled red snapper with coconut rice at the Š la carte restaurant.
As for the drinking part, I had 2 pĩna coladas, 2 lime daiquiris and 2 chocolate monkeys plus one half-glass of red wine there.
The pool bar also delivered snacks to your chaise if you wanted to indulge. I had banana bread, nachos and pizza (all on different days).
3. I participated in all of the BLC challenges to the best of my ability and posted my points well within the deadlines. The hotel didnít have a dedicated room for guests to use the hotelís computers and I didnít bring mine since most resorts do have this. However, I was given permission to use the conciergeís computer at the front desk after dinner on the days I needed to record my points and thatís all I used the computer for plus a couple of emails home.
4. I finished the 4th novel on the plane coming home. I didnít reach my goal of reading 5 novels but one of the books was more serious than my normal reads and it took me 4 days to read. In my defence though, I also read 2 magazines. The books I read included:
ē The Iron King by Julie Kagawa. This was a Teen Fantasy novel and it was really good. Itís the first book in a series and I canít wait to read the next one.
ē Snow Blind by P.J. Tracey. It was a good solid mystery and it was the 4th in the Monkeewrench series.
ē The Villa Triste by Lucretia Grindle. This was the more serious novel. It was set in Florence in the 1940s and in present day (2006) as well. The present day story was a mystery that related to the events that occurred in the 1940s. It was really good and I highly recommend it.
ē The Alchemyst by Michael Scott. This teen fantasy was quite good as well. It took me a little while to get into it but once I did, I could barely put it down. Itís the first in the Nicholas Flamel series.
I also played Scrabble with my dad every night before dinner and won 90% of the games and even though he was an English professor, heís not very good at playing strategically although he's better than he was last year.
And, of course I had a few naps as well. On Saturday, my dad decided he wanted to go to town because it was market day and asked me if I wanted to join him. I told him ďnoĒ because itís been my experience that town is always a lot hotter than the resorts and partially because thereís no where to cool off in town like the pool or some shade and also because most towns only have a bunch of touristy shops that sell a lot of junk. But, he went anyways and regretted it. He said that he walked through the town for the first half hour and bought some presents for his grandkids and then he had 1.5 hours to kill before the hotel shuttle returned for him, which he spent in a cafť.
So, Iím glad I didnít go with him.
The high points of the resort for me were the pool and the chaises. These chaises were the best ones Iíve ever seen at a resort. They were wooden with nice, thick pads. In fact all the furniture was made out of good, solid wood at the resort and the room we had a separate bedroom that my dad let me have and he slept on the futon in the living area.
Picture that hung over my bed
My dadís favourite points of the week included the dining room at the end of the pier that we took most of our meals at, the pool and the gardens plus the nice floral arrangements on the tables in the dining room.
Pier Dining Room
My dad in the Pier Dining Room
The weird thing about this resort is that hardly anyone swam in the Caribbean Sea. There were rumours of stingrays, jellyfish and sea urchins so I decided to be cautious and avoided it but itís really too bad because the Caribbean Sea is typically pretty warm and calm at this time of year.
So, that was my week. Sleeping, eating, swimming, exercising and reading. Itís a tough life, isnít it?
My Dad and me in front of the hotel
Sunday, February 03, 2013
So, I'm supposed to do a blog for the WC. Since I'm trying to do everything on it except for the items that you have to do all 4 days (I'm traveling tomorrow so drinking 8 cups of water, tracking food for all 4 days, no snacking after 8 p.m. may not be doable for all 4 days). And, this blog is the last item on that list.
So, I'm flying to Belize tomorrow morning at 6:20 a.m. and my plan for staying on track is:
- exercise for a minimum of 1 hour every day
- indulge myself on the first full day (Tuesday) and then eat responsibly for the rest of the trip
- participate in as many of the BLC challenges as possible and record my points faithfully
- read a minimum of 5 novels
That's it. No other plans.
Back in a week! I'll talk to you then.
Sunday, January 27, 2013
This second blog is also for the BLC weekend challenge.
Before I joined BLC20, I honestly never thought I would reach my weight loss goal. I started at 264 in 1998 and have been trying since then to lose weight. I must admit that after 2004 when I got RA, I kind of stalled out on the trying thing because I was in so much pain that exercise got booted to the curb and eating healthily wasn't high on my priorities when high fat food was way more comforting.
That said, in Fall 2012, I joined BLC20 with the goal of losing 10 pounds but being happy with 5 and thinking all along that I'd be lucky to lose anything. But to my surprise, not only did I lose 5 pounds, I actually lost 8! So, now reaching my goal weight seems much more attainable. However, it's still a long ways away but I haven't given up.
My rheumatologist is thrilled with my weight loss (now more than 10 pounds) and told me to keep on doing what I'm doing so that's the first thing I'm looking forward to. Losing weight will take a lot of pressure off my knees and therefore, less pain (in theory) and if there's less pain then maybe I'll be able to be more physically active.
I'd love to be able to buy clothes anywhere and not just for plus-sized women. I'm looking forward to being able to sit in an airplane seat more comfortably.
But, honestly, the biggest change I hope will just be my health. I'd like to reach my 60s in the best health that I can have so that I can retire to an active and healthy life. I'll still have RA and OA but I can manage those. And, I have to remember that living healthily is for life not just until I reach goal.
Sunday, January 27, 2013
I have my fair share of regrets but I must admit that I haven't held onto them. Life is about moving forward and not dwelling in the past. But, this is part of the BLC Weekend Challenge so I will put down one of my biggest regrets.
My biggest regret is that I stopped exercising when I got married. Before DH and I married, I weighed 130 pounds and to maintain that weight, I walked everywhere. I lived out in the country where a bus only went by our house once every 2 hours and once every 4 hours on holidays and Sunday so if you didn't feel like waiting for the bus, you walked.
The furthest I ever walked was 7.5 miles, which seemed like a lot especially given the fact that it was a hot July day. But, my best friend's boyfriend lived in Binbrook and she wanted to go to his house so my dad dropped us (her, me and her sister) off about half way there from our house and we headed off. It took us most of the day to get there as it was dusk when we arrived.
We (a different we) walked/hitchhiked 10.5 miles to Gage Park in Hamilton one summer night just for something to do. But, since there were 5 of us, rides were few and far between so there was a lot of walking. We had more luck getting rides home.
So, you see, walking was no big deal to me. But, when I got married, we ended up driving everywhere and hence no exercise.
I always tell my nieces and nephews to stay active no matter what and maybe that way, they won't gain as much weight as I did.
Saturday, January 19, 2013
The weekend challenge for BLC21 includes just doing something that you perceive to be impossible because of obstacles, that is:
D: DECIDE to just DO IT. Have a break-through this weekend. Attack anything that has been holding you back. It could be something you fear. Maybe something that makes you feel silly. Something that you think you can't do. Have you told yourself that you're too old/heavy/out of shape to do something? Maybe you've been putting something off for tomorrow, and tomorrow hasn't ever came. Tackle it, DO IT. Need some ideas? Ask on your team chat thread, your teammates may have some ideas that help spark you! Set a goal of 1 obstacle to overcome. Can be done anytime Friday through Monday. One time points awarded. 100 points.
I have overcome a lot of obstacles in the last year or so but I believe that my biggest obstacle was having the willpower to actually decide to tackle losing the weight that I wanted to lose and therefore, I had been just doing a so-so job of it over the last few years but that changed when I joined the BLC20 challenge. I decided that I was going to do my best to participate in all the challenges and I would really try to succeed this time.
Often in the past, I'd be okay during the week and my routine but the weekends and special occasions always sidelined me because I figured I deserved a treat or I deserved to eat what I wanted to during special occasions since I was good 90 percent of the time.
But the problem with that was that the 10 percent of the time that I wasn't good created the obstacle for me to lose weight because I wasn't 100 percent committed to the end goal. However, since I joined BLC20, that has changed and I am now 100 percent committed and it's showing on the scale.
So, now I don't know what to do for this weekend's challenge since I've already overcome my biggest obstacle. The only other things that I can think of concern obstacles that are caused by my lack of energy as the day progresses and the only way that I can see to overcome those are to do what I need to do early in the day before my energy flags and I already do that as well. That's why I exercise before work and that's why I take such a late lunch (1:30ish usually) because I have more energy before lunch than after lunch and that's why I go to bed so early so that I can get accomplished what I need to get accomplished the next day.
Another obstacle for me are my physical limitations due to osteoathritis and rheumatoid autoimmune disorder in my knees. For example, I couldn't hike for years because of my knees but last year, we bought me hiking sticks so now I can do that. I have also found that the more I move, the better I feel so regardless of my physical limitations, I haven't let that stop me usually.
As you can see, I'm still stumped on what to do for the weekend challenge. Any ideas?
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