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SPINNING The Drearies Away...!

Friday, October 09, 2009

Although I had hoped to get out for long walks/jogs while visiting family in MI, it's just been too yucky outside...cold, drippy and dreary. So I had my son set up his bike in his bike trainer and tried mimicking what I imagine a "spinning" class to be like...whew! Great, soaking wet workout! :-) SPINNING the drearies away...! (I've YET to join a spinning class, but would like to someday...you know, like when there's TIME?!?!)

While traveling to MI I had a blast listening to Frank McCourt's Teacher Man in audiobook format. It was wonderful to hear him telling his own story with his Irish brogue mixed in with tough, tell-it-like-it-is New York City influences.

A couple of things he said resonated with my wonderful journey here at SparkPeople. When talking about his philosophy of teaching he drew a big letter "F" on the left side of his chalkboard and another big letter "F" on the right side of his chalkboard and said that when he teaches he hopes to inspire students to move from:

Fear ---> Toward ---> FREEDOM!

...which sums up what I and I think MANY of you are doing here through SparkPeople... BOTH actually MOVING and making that transition from Fear to Freedom, but ALSO to INSPIRE OTHERS to do the SAME! Chris Downie also echoes this sentiment in his book "The SPARK!" Which I've also been reading and nodding my head throughout. Chris uses my well-worn reference to Newton's Laws of Physics...an object at rest tends to stay at rest, while an object in motion tends to stay in motion. This is why missing a day of cardio is so risky for me...I IMMEDIATELY feel the pull of staying STOPPED and have to FIGHT it so!

Another thing McCourt said toward the end of his book referring to retirement was that he wanted to be "out IN the world before" he "was out OF the world!"

Which also sums up a driving force within myself: I want to do ALL those things I've passed up along the way in my life...things I either told myself I was too fat to do or too apathetic to do...I crave it ALL and want so much to catch up and do it ALL! Preferably YESTERDAY! :-)

So SPARK ON, everyone...be your OWN inspiration and pay it forward by inspiring OTHERS TOO!

Don

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

WISTFULVISTA 10/10/2009 9:17PM

    What's the rule? "An object in motion tends to stay in motion"? Thanks for a vivid illustration of that, Don! And moving from fear to freedom seems to take a Herculean effort, but I can only imagine the rewards! Glad you got a chance to read "The Spark" in advance... I can't wait for my copy! - Susan

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YAKWOMAN 10/10/2009 9:08AM

    Don, YOU are an amazing inspiration to me. Thank you for sharing your journey with all of us here. emoticon

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ZELLAZM 10/10/2009 6:22AM

    I loved reading that book and I can imagine it would be a special experience to hear Frank McCord read it himself! I may just have to "read" it again.

Hope you've been more comfortable sleeping!

Blessings for a weekend in motion,
Michelle

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JCORYCMA 10/10/2009 12:39AM

    I've signed up for swimming lessons at the Y starting next week. I've always been a little apprehensive about water so your blog was so timely for me! I took yoga last Sunday and why did I ever think yoga was like a relaxing nap I'll never know. Just about the time the soreness is dying down it'll be time to go again. Keep reminding me Fear to Freedom...
Joanne emoticon emoticon

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ROYALETBONE 10/9/2009 9:02PM

    Thanks for this blog... fear to freedom, yes! Spark on!

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SOULCOLLAGESUE 10/9/2009 7:32PM

    I hadn't heard of Teacher Man. Thank you for sharing both his lessons. They resonate with me, as well. Your journey continues to inspire me, Don.
emoticonSue

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ZIRCADIA 10/9/2009 2:03PM

    I read Teacher Man not too long ago -- but listening to it definitely sounds more fun. :D hehehe.

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4A-HEALTHY-BMI 10/9/2009 11:58AM

    You know, there's a terror in finding something you like to do, later in life.

Take WW kayaking. I've had so many activities stolen from me by my knee injury at 17 and subsequent arthritis: running, martial arts, downhill skiing. It's one of the reasons I just gave up and gained up to 335.6 lbs. (Obviously not the only reason, but definitely a convenient excuse to use...)

I found myself close to tears on Sunday at the end of the WW kayaking trip - partly out of sheer exhaustion, and partly because I've finally found something that provides the adrenalin rush I love. And what if, at 43, I've discovered the sport too late to improve enough to enjoy it before my body falls apart?!

All I can do is push forward and see where it takes me. Drop the remaining 40 lbs. Develop my basic rolling and bracing until they're instinct. Build my core and upper body strength. And not waste time about it. I aim to do this in time for spring melt. That's almost 6 months away.

I don't even want to know what age people peak in this sport, because I don't want to be limited by anything other than my own heart and abilities. And maybe in the end, that's where we all as humans need to be. Pushing our own limits to do the things we love, in whatever capacity we can enjoy them.

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Set New 35 min. Record...Traveling

Tuesday, October 06, 2009

With the help of some great 6 mph songs I bumped my 35 min. treadmill distance covered up to 3.1 miles today...woo hoo! The songs, if anyone's interested:

The Who - My Generation (Live @ Leeds version)

Swing Out Sister - Breakout (Live @ the Jazz Cafe) although the pace slows some after the frenetic drum solo intro...still a great song to get me going!

Pat Metheny Group - Eighteen (on one of Metheny's weaker albums, Offramp, but one of my favorite upbeat, fast-paced tunes!)

Gorgeous autumn day today! Had a stuffed up allergy-nosed-night, but once I got moving things cleared for me.

Going to be traveling out to see family in Kalamazoo, MI...leaving tomorrow morning, returning Sunday. Will be in touch but not as much....too much to get out and DO! Woo hoo! :-)

Don

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

CATH5109 10/8/2009 2:26PM

    It is good to hear about those inevitable down days/moods and then the process of recovering your spirits and getting back on track. Sometimes when I am in the middle of one of those I simply forget that the world is any other way--thankfully I generally snap out of it fairly quickly, but part of that is remembering that other people go through this too. Thanks. Cathy

I just noticed that this comment is attached to the wrong blog--shoulda been on Bouncing Back (still getting the hang of sparkpeople)

Comment edited on: 10/8/2009 2:28:50 PM

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ZELLAZM 10/7/2009 9:07AM

    Happy trails to yoooooo!

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_MAOMAO_ 10/7/2009 3:19AM

  Actually, at first I thought you'd spent 35 minutes traveling, when I read your blog title. I thought, either that's a lot of dribbling, I'd think your hands and arms would get sore, or you'd never been far from home before.
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_MAOMAO_ 10/7/2009 3:12AM

  Have a fantastically fun trip, Don! emoticon

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SOULCOLLAGESUE 10/7/2009 12:09AM

    Have a great trip, Don. A break is healthy. SP will wait; the "doing" won't. Your 3.1 in 35 sure impresses me to no end.
emoticonSue

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WISTFULVISTA 10/6/2009 11:31PM

    Hey, Don! Have a great trip out to Kalamazoo, and we'll see you back here - same time, same station - on Sunday, then. CONGRATS on your new record :::insert wild applause here::: ! I'd forgotten about that Swing Out Sister selection, which I LOVE! Nice choice...and energizing! I like Pat Metheny, too, and have Offramp and one other of his CDs... love the sound of that crystal-clear, silvery-crisp guitar he plays! Be sure to take some tunes for the road, and I hope you see lots of brilliant fall foliage. All the best! Susan

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OUTDOORGIRL69 10/6/2009 11:01PM

    Have a good trip. I have a brother that lives in Kalamazoo, MI.
Haven't talked to him in 3 years.

Good work out. I will blog om Monday on how my 3 day 60 mile Cancer walk went.

emoticon

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ZIRCADIA 10/6/2009 10:22PM

    I FREAKING LOVE that you're working out to PAT METHENY GROUP!!!! I Looooooooooooove them. So. Much.

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Bouncing Back From a *Bleh* Day...

Monday, October 05, 2009

I don't often post when things go wrong, so at least let's put something out there when things go wrong...and then RIGHT! :-)

A combination of things just had me out of sorts yesterday...allergies acting up, despite taking allergy meds (happens now & then)....sneezing, runny nose. Right inner ear continuing to have a lot of pressure, just shy of an ache. Grumpy mood and worst of all...it felt like somebody pulled the plug out of me...energy was nil all day long! It was the first day in a long, long time that I just couldn't pull myself together for any cardio.

And of course that only made me feel worse...!

So today started with oversleeping...body is trying to tell me something...! I *truly* need 8 hours sleep and so rarely get it. Although I don't SEVERELY shortchange myself, a week of 6-7 hours sleep usually has me dragging by the weekend.

But the extra sleep helped and my energy is back today for a round of treadmill time and ST w/ dumb bells, resistance bands and push ups. Now THAT was more like it!

So with that said, we're past 10:30 pm and I'm already short-changing myself...night all! :-)

Don

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

SOULCOLLAGESUE 10/6/2009 5:35PM

    I'm there for you in all your moods. I love all types of weather; the world would be quite boring without it.

Glad your self-care paid off.
emoticonSue

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HEALTHY_CAROLYN 10/6/2009 1:43PM

    Don, I'm with you on tending to shy away from highlighting those not-so-great days because my thinking is, it's not really going to change anything. I need to pick myself up and dust myself off. To an extent, that's true, but I think talking about them serves as not only an example that even though our spark is strong, we still have off days and also because it gives others a chance to be a support system for us. I know in every day life, I tend not to share the not-so-great things until after I've resolved them. I think I don't want to be whiney or needy, but there's a huge space between that and not letting anyone know what I'm going through. I just haven't found what that is. I don't know if you saw my message yesterday on NBS about how my day wasn't going so well, but that was my little step into changing my tight-lipped habit on not-so-great days. Way to go on making that step yourself!

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WISTFULVISTA 10/5/2009 11:56PM

    Beautiful, blazing fall...and then there are the miserable allergies! Sounds like you got a triple whammy's worth of dreary symptoms, too. Sleep is my medicine at such times, and without even trying, I sacked out for a 1 1/2-hr. nap this afternoon, in fact. I'm so glad your sleep was restorative enough to allow for a good workout. We've been hitting the microwave quite a bit for tea tonight, sinus-wise... I hope daybreak has you feeling much, much better! - Susan

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ROYALETBONE 10/5/2009 11:35PM

    Hmmm- Mama Mary says- get your 8 hours! Really- it's cold and flu season, pay attention to that need!
Argh- drama all around my house last night, I think I got about 5 hours of sleep. I'm going to go sleep on the boat tonight so that I can really sink into it. Darn neighbors dog is in heat. Whine, whine, whine... me & the dog! Tee hee.

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4A-HEALTHY-BMI 10/5/2009 11:16PM

    LOL. From your description of your symptoms, I was about to suggest that it might be getting close to That Time of the Month. Then I remembered you're not likely to have those issues...

Glad you figured it out!

I actually stayed home from work today and took it easy. 6 hrs of WW kayaking this weekend really took it out of me. I felt OLD this morning.
emoticon

Eventually had to get up because the stupid CO detector decided to start beeping and I couldn't get it to shut up by resetting it, unplugging & replugging, opening windows, moving it, vacuuming it, etc. so eventually had to call the fire dept to have them bring their mobile detector and verify that it was malfunctioning.

All this meant I actually had to get UP and get DRESSED, and actually move around....

At least they didn't come with the sirens blaring. I don't think I could have handled that much drama (I told dispatch to tell them not to, if possible).

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Need More Speedier Tunes...!

Friday, October 02, 2009

I've been ramping up my efforts on the treadmill...sticking with those "spikey" intervals and doing more of the 6 mph speeds. This week instead of the old 2.3 miles I've covered during each morning 'mill work I've been between 2.7 - 3.3 miles covered...breaking my old record...woo hoo!

One problem I've noticed, however is that my mp3 player doesn't have enough fast-paced music to pump me up to the 6 mph speeds...!

This morning I was surprised to find Van Morrison's "Brown-Eyed Girl" worked for one of my 6 mph intervals and Steely Dan's "Bodhisattva" and a Santana tune were my others. I'm having to forward through a lot of my formerly comfy 4 mph tracks. Sometimes I find myself creatively doing DOUBLE time on a slower track which can work for me.

Anyone have suggestions for tunes that really rev you up at those higher speeds? :-)

Don

PS...My tastes are kinda weird, running from classic rock, alternative, folk, *some* carefully selected contemporary country, bigtime jazz...but not big band or dixiland, new age, world music and hits from my earlier years, 60s-70s or so. Sometimes even slower music works for me because either the message or the power of delivery has such *punch.*

Don

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

USARUNNERGIRL 10/5/2009 12:07PM

    Woohoo. I am starting to do interval training. On Thursday I did bursts of 6, 7, and once 8 mph. The 8 didn't last long though. I listen to a lot of alternative/ rock tunes when I run.

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TRAINOF4 10/5/2009 1:44AM

    Umm, the Who, Rolling Stones, Hendrix? I know there are websites out there w/music based on beats/min. Maybe Nike has something since they're synching their shoes to people's IPods??

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SOULCOLLAGESUE 10/4/2009 4:29PM

    Um...6 mph? Nope. My legs don't move that fast. My tunes are probably slower than yours! Lol.

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ZELLAZM 10/4/2009 9:13AM

    I decided to wait and see before commenting on this post. Wanted to see what others suggested. Some goooood ideas here! Myself, I'm currently working out to WOW Worship 2009, and David Ramsey podcasts!

Now I'd like to see you try to workout to Brahms Hungarian Dance #5 in Gminor. ;)

And you're right about taking control over our money - for me it has been the natural outcome of taking control over my health and eating habits.

Thanks for the encouragement, Don!

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AME0809 10/3/2009 7:57PM

    Congratulations on breaking out and moving on up! I can't imagine a 6.0mph WALKING speed. I can regularly do 4-4.3 mph on the elliptical but only 3-3.5 on the treadmill. My short, little legs get all stumbly over themselves if I try to go any faster. I am improving, though, so maybe someday I can better keep up with you!

I don't regularly listen to music while I work out--I need something more distracting like the news. But I did like the look of some things from workoutmusic.com. It has various categories arrange by activity, style and even some by BPM.

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KELLI9001 10/3/2009 6:38AM

    Way to break out of that comfort zone!! My suggestion would be the disco sounds of the 70's!

You are making great progress...keep going!!

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NEWMOMOVER40 10/2/2009 9:25PM

    Zircadia, I'm with you - alternative (and some alt.country, and some alt/pop) is pretty much what works for me. (Although I also like to throw in some slower inspirational songs for those difficult middle stretches when it's tempting to want to throw in the towel ...)

For alternative, in addition to Ted Leo & The Pharmacists, and The Pixies (timeless!), I like ...

- Vampire Weekend (more on the pop side, but great)
- Port O'Brien
- Platinum Pied Pipers
- The Herbaliser
- Okkervil River
- Tullycraft (The Punks are Writing Love Songs always gets me going!)
- Firewater
- Dengue Fever (all in Cambodian, but that doesn't matter a bit)
- Tokyo Police Club
- Thee Emergency
- Telekenesis!
- The Shout Out Louds

BTW all of this and more is available via the wonderful KEXP Song of the Day Podcast, my favorite place to discover new bands.

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WISTFULVISTA 10/2/2009 9:05PM

    How did we exercise before music was added to the mix? I remember having to do calesthenics in seventh grade to "Go, You Chicken Fat, Go!" on a tinny phonograph - not one of my happier memories! Anyway, Don... I hope the tempos of these might be useful to you: Bonnie Raitt's "Hear Me, Lord," James Brown's "I Feel Good," "Mais Que Nada" from Sergio Mendes' "Timeless" album (with the Black-Eyed Peas), Acoustic Alchemy's "Same Road, Same Reason," as well as their "Cuban Heels," Sergio Mendes' "Odo-Ya," from the "Encanto" album. - Susan


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KEEPITMOVING 10/2/2009 3:35PM

    i'm with ORIGAMIFREAK on this one. being a traditionalist in some ways and experimentalist in others, i find a lot of swing, big band, and ragtime/piano rags keep my interest and heart rate up!
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ROYALETBONE 10/2/2009 2:56PM

    Songs that make me pick up my feet-
Bonnie Rait- Gnawin on It
B B King- (bunches)- Rock This House
John Mayal - Where Did My Legs Go?
Jp & Suba-Futuro Primitovo
Taj Mahal- Keep Your Hands Off Her

...... I have a 'cardio' playlist, and I'm going to have to delete some of my old favs... some for slow beat, a couple for just weird beats... to 'off'- changes of beats. Good listening, not good for pacing.
Let us know your new ones!


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YAKWOMAN 10/2/2009 2:33PM

    I'm not exactly sure how fast 6 mph running is, since I'm not to that point yet, but what about Sweet Home Alabama or something like that?

Thank you, Don, for being an inspiration to me and for seeming to always say the right thing! emoticon

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ZIRCADIA 10/2/2009 12:52PM

    My favorites for running are Ted Leo & The Pharmacists and The Pixies. :D

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4A-HEALTHY-BMI 10/2/2009 11:15AM

    I wondered when you might decide you wanted faster music - generally the selections you've mentioned before would have put me to sleep on my elliptical...
emoticon
I am partial to jive and big band swing. They tend to have a distinct rhythm around 120 bpm and they're fun to listen to.

Some favorite groups:

Benny Goodman
Big Bad Voodoo Daddy
Squirrel Nut Zippers
Brian Setzer Orchestra
Atomic Fireballs

Happy Treading...
emoticon

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L*I*T*A* 10/2/2009 10:45AM

    sorry...............when i'm on the treadmill i meditate so am not able to help you there................am sure someone will though.........all the best............blessings and hugs....................lita

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Windshield or Bug...Keep Moving & One ALWAYS Wins!

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

You know the expression "some days you're windshield, and some days you're the bug"...? (found another twist "and sometimes you find out the bug is a rock...lol!).

Well here's my treadmill analogy:

Some days you feel like YOU'RE moving the belt,

and

Some days it feels like the belt is carrying you along for the ride...!

But either way it goes, you're getting the job done and getting up off your duff and MOVING!

Tonight was one of those "along for the ride" nights...but what counts is that I got 'er done!

Here's a couple of fun links if anyone out there is a Mary Chapin-Carpenter fan like myself:

Lyrics to "The Bug"

www.sing365.com/music/lyric.nsf/The-
Bug-lyrics-Mary-Chapin-Carpenter/7C9C0
6B880443FAD48256938000DBC90


A fun, creative YouTube of "The Bug"

www.youtube.com/watch?v=90SXjQEhXKE

Okay folks...time for me to hit the sack and get those 8 hours of zzzzzzzzz's I so badly need! :-)

Don

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

SOULCOLLAGESUE 10/4/2009 4:28PM

    I hadn't heard that before. Thanks for these links, too.

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L*I*T*A* 10/1/2009 10:20AM

    good for you...........way to go!!!
thanks for sharing............blessings and hugs.................lita

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ZELLAZM 10/1/2009 8:05AM

    Oh, yeah, know that autopilot feeling! I like the bug/windshield analogy and had never heard it before!

WTG on getting in your workout - late but DONE!

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ROYALETBONE 10/1/2009 1:14AM

    I'm in the garage right now... flu bug. Your blog made me grin, anyhoot.


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