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And You're Rocking to the Next Big Thing

Monday, May 14, 2012

So here's a somewhat decent pic of m'new haircut. :)

I tell ya, I need a vacation.

Which is good, seeing as we are leaving day after tomorrow. We'll have the laptop but we'll be sharing it, so access will be spotty.

In the meantime, everybody and his brother has decided to call, which of course interrupts everything and then I lose my train of thought. And they all seem to be in perpetual hesitation mode.

You know what I mean - you get some weird blow by blow description of something you don't give a damn about. E. g. "Oh and I saw the neighbors today. Suzie was wearing a pink blouse. And Amy was wearing a white one. And Terri's was blue. Or was it green?" Pause. "Maybe it was blue-green? Wait, I'll check."


Or I get decisions on the other end of the line that are s...l...o...w, as if they were somehow momentous. "Yes ... send me ... a ... resume."

Okay, sure.

"And ... send it ... by email."

Er, I was planning on that, 'cause semaphore takes too long.

Yeah, I need a vacation.

What's planned?

Cape Code stuff, which mainly will involve walking, bringing breakfasts, lunches and snacks (dinners will be out) and generally getting better acquainted with the hot tub and spending time with the dude.

I need it!!

"Wait ... the ... hot tub ... is ... hot. No, wait ... it's ... kinda hot. No, wait, ... I'll get ... a ... what's it called again?"

Thermometer! And don't bother! Argh!!!

Yeah. I need a vacation.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:


    You...are...a...funny, girl.

A funny....girl, with a cute...haircut.


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DDOORN 5/14/2012 2:49PM

    Looking forward to hearing all about it...never spent much time out on the Cape beyond a little drive while staying at Plymouth WAY long ago. Missed an opportunity to join with cycling buddies on what sounded like a beautiful cycling vacation out there later this summer...not enough time & $$$...ugh!


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PHEBESS 5/14/2012 2:07PM

    Cute hair!

And I know what you mean about the hesitation mode - ugh!

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DMPRIDER 5/14/2012 1:03PM

    Have fun. Time spent by the ocean is the best! :)

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MS.ELENI 5/14/2012 12:20PM

    Have a great time.Sounds like a good vacation emoticon

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From the Rooftops Shout it Out

Monday, May 07, 2012

I've had a rather full week.

It started off kinda meh on Monday and Tuesday, and then suddenly I got a notification that I'd be interviewed at a rather large financial servies/insurance company on Friday. Hence I had to change a hair appointment to Thursday, which I did.

Hair dude gave me a fab cut. So I go. I was almost late and - get this - I ran through the streets of Boston, in ballerina flats, to get to the interview on time. This, I am able to do! I must've looked a little silly, trench coat flapping behind me. No matter. At least I could do it, eh?

And it looks good, yanno. I am not trying to get my hopes up, or otherwise risk jinxing it. So kindly forgive my vageness. But there is naught to report yet, not really. But it felt good. It was also the first in-person interview I've gotten for this job search. So even in that manner it's something of a victory.

Turning to sports - quite literally.

I ran my (egad, is this right???) 28th 5K race. I finished in 46:02, which is not so great for me. I've only been slower 5 times. Two of those times, oddly enough, I was a good 40 pounds lighter than I am now. For one of them (my first 5K), I was 20 pounds lighter than I am now. This is also my second-slowest time for this year (the first 5K of the year was 21 seconds slower). I was overdressed and hot, and splashed into puddles in an effort to cool off my too-hot feet.


This was a charity race, for Miles for Hope (Brain Tumor research). They gave out medals for top finishers in each division. The divisions were tiny, e. g. women 45 - 49, rather than women 40 - 49. But that's okay.

And I came in third in my division (out of four). So I got a medal! W00t!

It's weird. I know my time could have been considerably better, and it has been. I know that I was hot and that slowed me down. I know that a goodly chunk of the people doing the 5K were walking it. I know that the division was somewhat artificially kept small. I know that this is a lot more like the Participation Generation, where people get rewarded for just showing up.

I know all of that, yet I don't care. I got a medal!!

The last time I got any sort of a non-finisher award for anything athletic was when I was 11 years old and attending horseback riding camp. We had shows at the end of the year and ribbons were given out. I placed fifth (it's a pink ribbon) out of six. Even the gal who was in sixth got a ribbon (the Participation Generation goes back to the summer of 1974, apparently).

I cannot begin to tell you how much silly pride I have in this medal. And how good I feel about not only running this, the 28th 5K, but also about running through Boston in ballerina flats to get to an interview on time.

Life has changed. Neither of these things would have happened a scant five years ago.

I am a new person.

And I've got a medal!!!!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

PHEBESS 5/7/2012 8:03PM

    YAAAAAAAAAAAAY!!!!!!!!!! Congrats on being 3rd!!!!!!!

I have to laugh - I was in a boat race once, we came in 1st in our class - and last in the entire race!!! But hey, a win is a win!

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CAROLISCIOUS 5/7/2012 7:54PM

    A new person and a medal to prove it! That's so awesome, JES!

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ROCKYCPA 5/7/2012 2:05PM

    Good for you in winning the medal. Good Lunck on the interview - keep us posted.

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VEEJAY3 5/7/2012 11:48AM

    I am tutu excited for you.
Sorry! Couldn't resist the pun, my petite ballerina!

Hope nothing BARREs your way to the job, and you JETE into the stratosphere of success.

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TEMPEST272002 5/7/2012 11:31AM

    28 5Ks - that's incredible! Well done on showing up for the race - that's more than what 90% of people in our age group are doing. Enjoy that medal because you DO deserve it!

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MS.ELENI 5/7/2012 11:06AM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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DDOORN 5/7/2012 10:06AM

    Racking up those 5Ks...woo hoo! Crossing fingers on job prospects...

Nailed my 2nd official 5K yesterday myself...gotta pull a blog together on this.

Keep on celebrating the new, improved, Jes 2.0! Woo hoo!


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    This is great! So full of accomplishment and hope and great energy. Congrats on your well earned medal. And by the way the new hair is great!

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DMPRIDER 5/7/2012 9:35AM

    Congrats on your 5K and your medal! Enjoy it, you've earned it. And congrats on your "ballerina run" which is as much of an accomplishment as your actual 5K race. I hope good things come from the interview too.

Also FWIW, equestrian events frequently award ribbons to the 8th place (I think that's a brown ribbon).

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CHEETARA79 5/7/2012 9:23AM

    YAY! Where are you going to put the medal? Maybe you could wear it to your 2nd interview at the financial place? emoticon emoticon emoticon

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ARLENE_MOVES 5/7/2012 9:10AM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon

You get a bunch of medals from me, girl -- you are awesome. Good luck on the interview!!!

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Puzzle Pieces From the Clay

Monday, April 30, 2012

I visited my doctor last week, for a checkup.

And I am up 12.5 pounds since last year. This fact does not surprise me. Of course it dismays me, but I am at a stage in my life where 12 1/2 pounds up does not stink anywhere near as much as it used to.

For weight is not the only number that matters.

There are a whole host of other numbers that work, and matter, and those are rather good these days.

And so, without further ado -

First off, blood counts, etc. are fine and thyroid is good (I've been on HRT for that for years).

Cholesterol - This year, the overall # is 200. Last year it was 194, and it was under 200 back into 2007 which is before I even started. My overall # has never really been an issue for years.

However - what's considerably more interesting are HDL and LDL #s, and the ratio.
(I don't have 2007 #s)
2008 40//??//3.9
2009 33//113//5.1
2010 38//112//4.6
2011 53//124//3.7
2012 60//123//3.3

What does this all mean?

The HDL # is supposed to be high. At a 60, it's my highest in 5 years and is very high for any human.
The LDL # is supposed to be low. Mine is 123, only slightly under what it was last year.
THe ratio is supposed to be low. Mine is 3.3. Anyone with a ratio of under 5.0 is doing wonderfully. Heh, at 3.3, she wrote excellent on my report. I feel like I should get a gold star.

More funky news.

My resting pulse is 72 (the definition of normal) and my EKG heartrate is a mind-numbing 53. As in, they check the machine to make sure it's working.

I have a condition known as sinus bradycardia. It is not dangerous. It is, rather, found in 50 - 85% of all serious athletes.

Yeah, me. almost 218-pound me.

Holy cow.

Scales lie.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

DDOORN 5/3/2012 2:52PM

    Lots of great numbers! And I just know you'll keep those pounds in check.

I got a few good ones too with my recent check up...cholesterol 149, bp 112/58...don't know many of the others, but like you most everything but the weight is looking good!


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    I guess what really matters is not a number at all but your satisfaction with how you are doing. And it sounds like you have much to be satisfied about because you have worked for it. Jes I do so admire your dedication. I need have some rub off on me.

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DMPRIDER 5/1/2012 1:32AM

    Way to go!

I'm in a similar boat - not happy with the scale, but my pulse and BP were great at a recent doctor's visit.

Yay! Go you!

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CAROLISCIOUS 4/30/2012 9:06PM

    Ba$tard emoticon !

You are doing awesome!

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MS.ELENI 4/30/2012 1:34PM

    emoticon emoticon

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TEMPEST272002 4/30/2012 11:54AM

    Scales are nasty creatures & not to relied on to tell the whole truth. Well done on your medical check up & the healthy choices that you've made in the last year.

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SEXBOBOMB 4/30/2012 10:57AM

    Good for you!!!

And yes, scales do lie.

I'm much farther north in the 200s than you, but when I go to get my annual checkup, I always get the nurse who takes my blood pressure, looks at the dial, looks at me, looks at the dial and then says, doubtfully:

"Are you an...athlete?"

It always pisses me off, that little questioning tone she puts at the end, like it's beyond possibility that a big person can be an even remotely fit person.

Good for you for breaking the stereotype! emoticon

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SDEHNKE 4/30/2012 10:34AM

    Wow! That is great news and those are great numbers. As always, you inspire me.


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You Can Get Addicted to a Certain Kind of Sadness

Monday, April 23, 2012

On the Internet, no one knows you're a dog.

And they don't need to know anything else about you, either. You can slip and slide online, being one way or another. Pretend to be someone you are not, if you like. The Internet, for the most part, will not try to stop you. Hell, in nearly every instance, it will be IMPOSSIBLE to stop you.

Or you can step back and be honest with yourself.

Same is true here.

Take a look at this article in the NY Times -

I used to wonder about myself, as I would look at myself in the bathroom mirror, which only shows me about from the chest up, and I would think, hey, I look fine. The full-length mirror in the next room would be wholly ignored. After all, it was the source of bad news. And so I would look only at a piece of the puzzle, deny to myself what I was, and go on blithely ignoring the truth.

According to the article, it wasn't just my bathroom mirror that was pushing me in that direction. It was also, to a large (heh, pun not intended) extent the people around me.

* When the average size of your peer group is a 6, and you're a 26, you know you're obese.
* When their average size is a 12 but you are still a 26, you know you're obese.
* When they average 18, but you're still a 26, you know you're overweight.
* When they average a 22, you know you might be a little chunky.
* When they average a 26, and you're a 26, you know you're average.
* When they average a 28, you're a little under.
* When they average a 32, and you're still a 26, you're the red-hot mama, the skinny girl.

It's almost like trying to figure out the temperature without a thermometer. When yesterday was 80, and today is 60, it feels cold. When yesterday was 40 and today is 60, suddenly it's hot.

People ask all the time about what they can do for their families who are not following the program and are obese and doing nothing about it. A few ideas -
* Lead by example. You go out together? Eat properly, and SLOWLY. Chat and have fun in ways that do not involve eating. And promote a few ways to enjoy each others' company without food.
* Another idea - take photographs. The full-length kind. I see this all the time, friends and family members who untag themselves from FB photos where they feel they look fat. Well, I got news for ya. At a size 26, there isn't an angle on the planet that will make you look thin. So here, as your dieting friend/family member, I present the photo to you. You can ignore it or utilize it as inspiration. I am not here to rub your nose in things. But here are the pics. Do with them what you will.
* One final idea - be there. Be the friend. Be the person in their life who is doing it. Your news is of 5Ks and that great new vegan place and buying cute clothes. And it's more, too, as there are other aspects of your life, yes? The message is getting there, even if it's just on an unconscious level.

Be that one.

PS My cover model is an unknown German Shepherd puppy I found online and photoshopped a bit so that she's wearing a little green tee shirt. Isn't she a cutie pie?

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:


    Great blog. Thanks for sharing your thoughts.

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LILSUNFLOWER 4/27/2012 8:39AM

    Fantastic blog! And so true.

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    Much to think about. Great tips too. How is this for denial. I am surrounded by fit, active people. I still see myself as the skinny kid I once was. And I am shocked when I see a photo of myself as I actually am. Truth is photography is a brilliant idea not for me to help others but to keep me in touch with reality. I have avoid photos. I won't do that any more. Thank you friend.

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OPTIMIST1948 4/25/2012 12:28PM

    I agree with the comparison point. Really thoughtful insights. Thank you for sharing!

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CAROLISCIOUS 4/24/2012 9:03PM

    All of it...including the article...very intriguing. I don't think I was actually as fat as I thought I was growing up...I just had super skinny friends. Now, even at goal weight, it doesn't take much for me to feel like the fat girl.

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MADERINERUE 4/24/2012 8:30PM

    Like resignation to the end, always the end. I think we're secret song sisters.

Great great great blog (as usual).


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DOGLADY13 4/23/2012 9:17PM

    Great blog. You stirred up a lot inside me. Rather than dump here, I am going to process on my own blog. I hope you don't mind if I refer to your post.

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DDOORN 4/23/2012 5:01PM

    Missed that article on in NYT...thx for catching it for us!

Great suggestions, as always, Jes! Still struggling with mirrors and pics...ugh!


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TEMPEST272002 4/23/2012 3:47PM

    For many years, I didn't even own a full length mirror. And as "the photographer" I could pretty much avoid pictures of myself too. It's somewhat of a shock to see my "before" pics now. At the time, I was in complete denial. Great blog!

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2WHEELEDSHARON 4/23/2012 2:09PM

    She's an excellent model of someone who looks like she'd be there for you:)
I always forget to slow down and chew slowly when I eat with people, that's an excellent reminder for me.
Have a pleasant week!

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BESEVEN 4/23/2012 1:14PM

    This was inspiring. Thanks. You're a great writer, BTW.

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MS.ELENI 4/23/2012 11:41AM

    Great blog as usual emoticon

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So Let's Set the World on Fire

Monday, April 16, 2012

Today is quite a warm day, and it also just so happens to be the running of the Boston Marathon. I live pretty close to Heartbreak Hill and will probably check people out at some point.

I am not them, and I will never be them. And that can sometimes, in some small moments, feel a little like a failure. Despite how ridiculous that sounds as I type it. It's still the reality of it. Sometimes it feels like a reproach.

And I look at my body these days, too, and I am perhaps 30 pounds heavier than I was a couple of years ago, when I really got down there. And I can see a spare tire and my face is round again, that old familiar moon. And that, too, can feel like a reproach, and a smack upside the head.


And then I decided, what the hell - haul out the old "before" pic. And I realized it would be a good idea to do the comparison side-by-side shot. The left side pic has a few other people in it for a reason. For you need to see a true comparison there.

I didn't just have a spare tire. I had four steel-belted radials. I didn't have a moon-shaped face. It was Jupiter in its hugeness.

And now, looking at the, well, "after" is not a good name for the pic on the right, which was taken at the first 5K of this year. What's a good name for it? "In progress"? "130 off"? "2012"? "Where I am right now"?

I think I like that last one - Where I am right now.

This is where I am, right now. This is the moment I am living in.

In the talk of goals and dreams, sometimes you forget where you are - RIGHT NOW.

Just look what you've done to yourself.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

DDOORN 4/19/2012 2:31PM

    Love the pep talk...need it badly now, having slipped from 200 to 240...but hey, was once 450! So YES, YAY US!! :-)


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NEWKIM1 4/18/2012 8:53PM

    You are so right and such an inspiration! Thank you for taking the time to share!!!!!

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CAROLISCIOUS 4/16/2012 8:46PM

    Bet that girl on the left doesn't run 5Ks...

Don't ever forget how far you have come. Thank goodness for pictures...snapped even if we didn't want we have a reminder.

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SHEL1181 4/16/2012 1:40PM

    I agree with are an INSPIRATION! I can't even imagine running a 5K and you are doing it! That alone inspires me to run.....even if it's only in spurts right now. You may not be exactly where you want to be but you are still amazing!!!!!

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MS.ELENI 4/16/2012 11:45AM

    You forget sometimes how very special you are. You are great. emoticon emoticon

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PHEBESS 4/16/2012 11:24AM

    You've done great things to yourself!!!!!!!

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2WHEELEDSHARON 4/16/2012 10:55AM

    When I'm marathon watching, it's too easy to forget that I've accomplished a lot more than a lot of people who weigh less than me.
I think your "now" is pretty awesome!

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VALERIEMAHA 4/16/2012 10:48AM

    You are are an amazing, star-spangled being, leading the way for so many of us!

And good morning to you!

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CHEETARA79 4/16/2012 10:42AM

    You know what I see when I look at your side by side pictures? INSPIRATION! Seriously, you have lost so much weight and that is incredible. Not just that but the 2nd picture is of you RUNNING a 5k, something you probably couldn't have even walked at your previous weight.

Yeah, you're not 100% satisfied with your weight right now but who is? I mean, this Spark thing is a continuous work in progress and something that we'll all have to work at for the rest of our lives.

BTW, Greg and I ran our first official 5k this weekend with the Central Mass Striders. It was fun and we came in first and second (to last) place. Some of the people in the race are running the Boston marathon today.

emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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