Wednesday, March 30, 2011
OK America, do we really have to be so obsessed with food that we need to be constantly bombarded with images of it every waking moment?!? Are there people playing Jedi Mind Tricks on us at every turn, trying to hide the healthy droid snacks we are looking for, cause all I have seen these past 3 days in DC is fat, fattier, and fattest!
So I'm in day 3 of this 4 day conference and, God love 'em, the guys that put it on have done great. It's easily accessible, stuff is on time, pay your "landing fee" and coffee, breakfast, snacks, lunch, all is taken care of. But I can't take a bathroom break without smelling something sweet and buttery, or seeing someone heft a puffy, crumbly pastry on to a plate, or dither and blather about whether to choose the brownie or the blondie (so they take one of each!), then I get back to the hotel and somebody's hosting a sizzling taco social in the lobby.....and I'm half-crazed trying to eat right, trying to talk myself into a workout saying "Oh great and powerful Oz, pay no attention to that snack behind the curtain!"
So why does this matter! Well it's just another indication that making these healthy lifestyle changes is a daily choice, sometimes a daily battle. Just because it may have been easy for a day or week or two is no guarantee of smooth sailing forever. Last week I was feeling right in the middle of the Sparkpeople Groove; today I feel like I've been smacking the sharks attacking my lifeboat in the middle of a typhoon!
The good news is, I can play the Jedi Mind Tricks on myself too. Somehow, knowing that I'd have to log the 400 calorie blondie and write about it in the evening made it just easy enough to reach for a bowl to ladle in some cantelope....knowing I'd have to 'fess up to Safaribabe if I blew off a workout and opted for the tacos gave me just enough energy to walk past the fiesta and up to the gym.
And of course, someone slipped an Italian Pizza and sub delivery service menu under my room door! See, it's everywhere!
So I used it later as a mat for my sweaty gym shirt!
Spark on friends!
Tuesday, March 29, 2011
Man 'o man it's hard to get used to freezing weather after you've been living life in the 70s for a few weeks!
I got into DC late Sunday (thanks again for the delays Delta), but at least the tower at Reagan had multiple pots of coffee going keeping the controllers awake.
Monday started off well. Breakfast at the hotel....go right by the waffles & eggs, grab a bowl of oatmeal, spoon in some raisins and add cinnamon, Voila! Then off to my conference here to watch everyone grazing on doughnuts and bagels and candies and...Arrrggghhhh! But that's the sea change in my mentality today. In the past, scarf up a bagel, lather it with cream cheese, bring a doughnut with me back to the meeting, Oh yeah!
This time I loaded a plastic bowl with cantelopes, berries, and pineapple...hell of a lot easier on my conscience and these days, just as satisfying.
During the more boring presentations (there were quite a few), I scanned my colleagues, some that I've known for years, and noticed how many of them seemed a bit....large...soft around the face & middle....frequently coming back to the conference room with handfuls of candy.....Arrrrgggghhhh! Decided I wanted to belong to the side of the room that was leaner, a little more taught around the face and chest, so that helped me resist the worst of the fat-bombs the staff kept leaving around the joint.
Well my brother lives in DC, so I had made plans to see him for dinner. The conference wrap-up went long, so I had just enough time to get back to the hotel, change, download a DC Metro app, and get over to his place.
Love my little brother! He just bought a brand new townhouse right downtown and is enjoying life. He's got 2 great little girls (at 49 he has a 4 yr old and a 1 yr old.....what the hell was he thinking!) And he's also a confirmed carnivore.
He made this this 8 lb beef tenderloin that was to die for! Cooking large roasts is his passion and I love him for it. This one was encrusted in salt, seasoned just right with herbs, and a beautiful rosy pink throughout. Yum!
So needless to say I had more than a few slices. but the sides were simple (love his wife too, she made plain white rice and some sauteed vegetables to ward off an angioplasty). Then of course my niece wanted me to sit with her after dinner and have ice cream at their dinky little "tea table". Oh all right!
So thankfully I had done well at the conference, but, planning for worst case, I was about 400 calories over for the day. Not too bad, it just means I'll need to add in some extra cardio this week.
And I will work out Tuesday!
Sunday, March 27, 2011
Well here's a Non-Scale Victory for you; SWMBO and I went furniture shopping today, a historically poke-my-eyes-out adventure…..and it was fun!
I've mentioned our (her) "House 2.0" upgrade plan before....2 months ago we successfully hunted down a nice dining room table. Well I thought that was the end of it, but what the hell was I doing thinking.
So we made plans to drive to Pensacola today and hit a few odd duck antique stores, then a weirdo design place where they empty your wallet by "customizing" all the various items that I learned about today; sofa skirts, T-cushions, pleated sock arms, and somebody please hand me a pair of knitting needles I can jam into my eye sockets!
She normally takes care of the aesthetics, while my primary concern in a couch is comfort....hence our historic difficulty shopping....that plus her 5'4" frame usually leaves her legs dangling like Lilly Tomlin in a rocker on couches that appeal to me.
Well "design guy" at this place was actually pretty good....he must have smelled a sale coming because I was ready to plunk down hard cash today so that we wouldn't have to repeat this nightmare again next weekend.
So after an hour we finally decided on a couch and then phase 2 began....pick out the fabric...and cushion types...and the braiding on the pillows....and hand me the needles please! I looked at the wall-full of fabrics to my right, said "No way, sweetie, all yours!", hobbled over to a comfortable looking wide-chaise and watched her and design guy chuck fabric after fabric all over the place.
And I saw that she was really having such a great time!
Well my Grinch heart melted at her delight and I realized how comfortable this monstrosity of a chair I was on felt and decided, "what the hell"
So once she and design guy had matched all the appropriate primary colors, balancing hues and harmonizing schemes and remember my needles please!, I called her over to this comfortable monster I was on, snuggled her up, asked if she could see the two of us lounging around on this thing in front of our big windowed wall and she nodded an excited yes. So I said, "OK, let's get this too!"
She was shocked! So was I! It was totally impulsive, but exactly the right thing to do on an issue that has resulted in more friction between us than anything since our older boy brought his girlfriend over for a weekend stay (that was a doozy!)
But I figured this one out! You see, I could care less if the couch was blue with hints of ocean grey or striped like a tiger in heat, as long as it was comfortable....she was more concerned with the style and drew immense joy in customizing it and planning how it would “all look.”
So she had at it again with design guy, this time matching 3 kinds of fabric for the couch and all its pillows, and I decided, "OK, I'm all in on this" then did what I do best....taking charge and motivating people to do their best.
I told design guy "Be Bold!", told my wife, "Make sure this thing makes a statement!" When design guy brought some lame beige fabrics, I looked at him over my glasses and said "Really?!? That's bold to you? How about this, or this, or this" and started throwing fabric samples all over the couch like Gatsby emptying his dresser full of shirts. He let out a squeal, fanned himself, and pranced back to the samples. When SWMBO brought a paisley looking thing with hints of Persian design in it, I asked “Is that really dynamic enough to match what you did with the couch? Will this go with the buffet and the hutch? No, then get back to that fabric wall!"
They had a blast! They thought I cared about the colors! No, I couldn't care less! I just enjoyed that they were really thinking about it and working so hard! Come on design guy, you went to school for something right? Or were you self-taught watching Trading Spaces as a kid! Prove to me this will work! Explain how this matches with that, why is this a good choice.....work for it!
And they did and they were so happy with their effort! SWMBO hugged design guy, he brought the manager lady over and they all crowed & crooned over how great it "went together."
So that’s just me, that’s what I have fun doing, and if I can use that to make furniture shopping more enjoyable, well OK. I’ll probably have a financial hangover when I look at our accounts this month, but at least the worst is over….I hope.
Then again, there’s that hanging chad over a TV replacement out there as well……hmmmmm what would look good on the living room wall….hmmmmm......
Friday, March 25, 2011
Well today my flesh was weak, but willpower and a good trainer got me through a workout that, on my own, would have been much shorter.
As if to make up for yesterday, today was very hectic at work....a pretty accurate prediction of the next 4 weeks of my life.
So once again, I was tempted to can today's workout, but once again, said hell no (One of the cool by-products of regular blogging is that I can't really give in too easily to impulses that only days before I loudly declared victory on in a post). But once I got to the gym, my energy level took a nose-dive (and I had eaten well all day).
Months ago, after surgery, I hired a trainer for a number of reasons...mostly to make sure I didn't do something stupid lifting weights while on crutches. But I have also been pleasantly surprised by how much of an extra push I get to do things I would not normally do on my own.
I was very impressed on how we adjusted on the fly.....took off some weights and increased the repetitions for smaller muscle groups, focused on alternate angles to relieve tired muscles. And of course the, "Come on, you've got this in you, push a little more" was annoying but effective.
So hiring a trainer was a prudent move while I limped around on crutches, but I'm thinking I might stick with this even after I ditch the cane in a couple of weeks.....damn, does that mean this replaces the kayak as a reward for reaching goal weight?!?!
Thursday, March 24, 2011
Well today went really, really well! Today was the day to clean up some life clutter (work & home). Some things I planned for, others just came down like manna from heaven!
The first thing I did was to tell my front office staff no interruptions all day. I just gave them a few names of folks that I'd take calls from but no drive-bye walk-ins, no, "by the way boss...." I closed my office door and hunkered down focused on tasks that needed my full concentration and that I've kept letting drag.
Then out of the blue, some great news that I had been waiting on for a few months finally materialized today (one of the calls I said I would take) and all of a sudden, all was right and true in the world! Cleaned out the last of my workload, left the office, picked up SWMBO, and we went to finally register our cars in Florida (Yeah, we've been driving with out of date registration since the end of February....call the gator police!)
Came home, did 30 minutes of some ferocious cardio on the spin bike, showered, changed into the tux (which continues to feel looser and looser!), and went out to a formal dinner event with not a hint of anxiety about eating out! And the food was awesome! A surf & turf of shish kebob & gulf shrimp, with a couple of baby potatoes....dial up the Sparkpeople app in the iPhone, and presto, I'm sitting at 1200 calories after dinner. "Dessert? Yes, I'll have that slice of carrot cake please!" Take me to 1700 calories for the day and see if that hurts me!
So, just one of those days when everything is hitting on 8 cylinders....I've learned to enjoy them and to not expect every day to be like that.
Next week, it's back and forth on the road throughout April....DC Sunday, back to Vegas the week after, Kansas City, then somewhere in Nebraska at the end of the month.
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