Monday, July 16, 2012
I have been dragging myself around for days, weeks, it feels like months although I know, intellectually, it has not been quite that long.
It is HOT.
Now, the real definition of a heat wave is three consecutive days of 90+ temperatures. For those of you who use the Metric System, 90+ degrees is M*F'in' HOT.
It has not, for the most part, technically been heat waves (although I think we might hit one this week. We also had one when this nonsense started, back in mid-June). But it has been over 80, 85 most days, and it has been humid. The air is like thick, plain oatmeal. You can stand a spoon in it.
And so, of course, what did I do last weekend?
Heh, I ran my 30th 5K.
The time was godawful; the third-worst time I have ever had. I am also heavier than I have ever been for a 5K. As in, when you compare to the lightest I was for a race, I am 56.8 pounds more.
Funny thing is, I don't look huge.
Now, I don't say I look skinny by any means, but I don't look like I'm in love with the buffet at Denny's, either. This was how I was in Junior High, and High School, and into much of college and Law School. Densely packed. A surprise inside, perhaps, like a fortune cookie, eh?
A big part of that is strength training. I see people lifting 5 and 10 pound weights and I am supportive, yanno, but I last lifted a 10 pound weight for a workout back when I was recovering from abdominal surgery. Back in '10.
What do I lift now?
45 pounds, folks.
Why that amount?
Well, the thing of it is, any higher and I start to leave the realm of hand weights and hit the realm of big honkin' barbells. And I don't have the room or the budget for same.
When I was doing the gym, I was lifting more. But the gym is also not in the cards right now. Too much of a cash sink right now. I just can't justify it in the budget, even if I live there.
So I take my preexisting iPod and hand canteen that I won in the after-race raffle after one of my 5Ks, and wear my sneaks and my shades and a Red Sox cap and a tee or a halter top and cargo shorts and little New Balance socks and I go out there into the fiber-rich miasma that is Boston and I swim past the people who are panting as they barely move from air conditioned house to air conditioned car to air conditioned office to air conditioned restaurant to air conditioned gym (maybe) and then, eventually, back to air conditioned house.
I go out there and I do it. I am s...l...o...w in the heat, but that's to be expected. I also only do somewhat short stints. It's generally 30 minutes or so, rather than the usual 80 (no wonder I've gained weight). At home there is a fat free yogurt and a 90-calorie fiber bar that I have stowed in the freezer and will make my fillings rattle and will, hopefully, cool me down a bit.
And then tomorrow I get to do it all over again.
And I say "uncle" to no one. Not to those who look at a woman who weighs nearly 230 and cluck and disapprove and wonder why I'm not hidden away somewhere. Not to those who think it's too hot to do ANYTHING, because even one small thing is something. Not to those who just do the air conditioner glide from house to car to office and around, almost as if they were in one large, temperature-controlled human Habitrail.
But I am getting awfully tired of the heat.
So, heatwave and near-heatwave gods? Let's have a mini-surrender, mmmkay? Otherwise I'll need to go out and buy more halter tops, and I am not so sure my public is ready for that yet.
Monday, July 09, 2012
The pic is silly, and so is the song.
I am in a less than serious mood. I've been serious for far too long!
Perhaps the heat is finally really getting to me. I dunno.
But in the meantime, fun is kinda the point, now, isn't it? Sure, we have a lot of extremely serious reasons for doing what we do.
We want to be healthy. We want to live longer. We want to see grandchildren grow up. Etc. etc. etc. yadda yadda yadda.
We also want to look good (or at least better) in swimsuits. We want to look good nekkid - and have more fun while nekkid. We want to have people look at us and smile. We want to fit into the seats at baseball games and on roller coasters, and walk through haunted houses straight and not sideways, and dance without shaking the paint off the walls (unless we really want to).
All of these are perfectly legitimate and wonderful reasons. They all work. They are all good.
Me, today, my reason is to be able to wear this pair of shorts I've got on without my thighs rubbing together so much that the inner legs stop riding up.
Yep - there's my big motivation today.
Oh, and if you start up the music - you're gonna get Rickrolled. :)
Monday, July 02, 2012
This picture is actually from April. These were apology flowers from gal who, while walking past my house, decided to pick one of my irises (thereby harming the plant) and take it home with her. I had caught her, told her that the flower actually belongs to someone, etc. She came around a few hours later with flowers. Which was, all told, rather nice of her (and my husband and I accepted her apology). A lot of people would have just blown off the crazy woman and walked a different way for a few months, hoping that said crazy woman did not have a shotgun and/or a long memory.
I have the latter, not the former.
Anyway - I keep seeing this, over and over again, all over the place, and not just on Spark.
Sorry I can't hang out, I have to run. Sorry I'm not eating your dessert. Sorry I'm not drinking with you. Sorry I'm not just gonna watch TV. Sorry I'm not who you thought I was before. Sorry I'm not maintaining how big I am, and am striving to get better.
Egad, when did we become such an apologetic culture?
Sure, we are trying to be kind and polite and all of that. And we all have to live here in the world. And if apologizing makes it possible for us to get out and run, or pass on that piece of pie, or decline the alcohol or whatever, then perhaps we should do that.
It's whatever it takes, right?
Wellllll, .... kinda.
See, I think when you apologize that much, and you hide behind it and you make excuses and you sort of giggle without conviction and minimize it - "Oh, this old thing in a size 6?" or "Oh, I ran a 5K, but it's really not a big thing." or "Yes, I drink a lot of water but boy do I pay for it!" or "I cook most of my meals, but it's really because I'm watching my pennies or my husband likes it or I like to stay in (as opposed to: I'm doing this because it's healthier)" or "I strength train but, really, I'm no body builder" - EGAD - WHAT ARE YA DOIN' TO YOURSELF?
You are putting yourself down.
You are minimizing your efforts.
You are putting something else in front of what you need to do.
You aren't believing in it.
You aren't invested in it fully.
And it's easy to look at it and think, "This isn't normal living. Normal living is hanging around and watching TV and having beer instead of water when out and good Lord who runs 5Ks?" and "I can't wait to be done with all of this calorie counting, strength training, water drinking, cooking, exercising business so I can return to my couch and my Doritos!"
But this is a seductive lie.
It's just like the fake apology.
You have lied to others that you are sorry, or that it's not a big deal.
It *IS* a big deal.
It is the BIGGEST deal ever, for you.
Quit acting like it's nothing, like it's no biggie. Even if you've gotten used to it, don't forget how much effort was required to go beyond the initial inertia. How tough it was to roll that boulder up the hill for the first time.
I am not saying that you suddenly become rude to people. I am not suggesting that an occasional little white lie is out of the question, 24/7/365, when sometimes it just smooths the way and gets you where you need to go. I am not saying that you need to become arrogant and selfish.
What I am saying, instead is - people admire you for what you're doing. Say "Thank you." Not "Oh, it's no big deal."
Because it IS a big deal.
And when they say, "Do you want pie?" Your answer is, "No, thank you." It's not a litany of excuses. It is not apologies. It is three little words. No more!
And when they say, "Oh, you run 5Ks?" Your answer is, "Yes, do you want to join me?" or "Yes, they're fun." or "Yes, my next one is in two weeks." or "Once I've completely rehabbed my knee, I'll get back to them." It is not, "Oh, well, it's nothing compared to marathoners." It is less than what marathoners do; that much is true. But don't diminish it. Don't say it's nothing. It is NOT nothing.
And when they say, "Why aren't you drinking tonight?" Your answer is, "I'm the designated driver." or "Too many carbs. Maybe next time, when I've got space in my eating plan." or "I'm happy having water tonight." It isn't "Oh, that looks good. But I'm being a martyr and missing out." 'Cause yanno something? That beer tastes like the beer you had last week or last month or last year. They don't go around changing the formula or anything.
And there's a thousand other scenarios but the bottom line is - you are doing SOMETHING. And you are doing something BIG. Don't tamp it down and hide it in a small box and pretend it's tiny and insignificant.
And for God's sake, don't be sorry about it.
Monday, June 25, 2012
Last week was skeery hot. And while it is cooler here, the humidity does not seem to have let up much. The air is like oatmeal.
It's got fiber in it.
Anyway - aside from a phone screen and a lovely mammogram, my main activity of the week was going to the Red Sox game on the 20th. This was utterly unexpected - someone at Mr. j's office had tickets he was giving away. We sat on the left-field line.
And it was HOT.
Not just hot, but HOT.
Now, I love baseball, and I love the Red Sox and I love Fenway Park. Plus they shellacked Miami and we saw David Ortiz hit a grand slam.
This was all excellent.
Except that, at about 9:50 PM, I checked the temperature by opening up my phone.
And it was still 95 degrees.
Boo, hiss, we left early. Neither of us had ever done that before, but there really wasn't any point in watching them continue the shellacking (when we left, it was 13 - 4. The final score was 15 - 5) as we wilted.
But - despite the monster heat and all of that, there is a connection to this journey, you see. And the connection is the seats.
The seats at Fenway are narrow. Even in the newer sections, they are pretty damned small.
And you can always tell who's too big for Fenway. Those people, regardless of what's happening on the field, they are perched, seemingly expectantly, on the edge of their seats. But it's not home runs or pitchers' duels that keep them from only using 10% of the real estate they have paid for. Rather, they are only using that much because their hips do not fit.
Back in 2006, we went for the first time. And this was about three months before I said "Enough is enough!" and started losing weight. I was easily at my highest, so that's 346 pounds.
I was one of the perchers then.
I loved the game and loved the experience. Hated perching. Hated feeling that the park was not for me. Hated feeling like I was almost an imposter, there because somehow, despite my bulk, I had sneaked in.
But no longer.
I may fret these days about maintenance regain. And believe me, I do. But I no longer feel out of place there.
We'll return later in the summer, for my birthday.
Go Sox, and go YOU.
Monday, June 18, 2012
Well, for those of you who were keeping track of this stuff at home, I batted a thousand on all three jobs.
And ... they went as follows.
The one I really wanted, that one was through a recruiter. He pushed for an early decision, mainly as the Hiring Manager wanted someone in for the first of July. And that's just not gonna happen if the decision is much later than, well, today.
I was sent over, as was another woman. She had rather different experience from me; this was done deliberately as the recruiter really had no idea how the Hiring Manager was going to go.
Anyway, long story short, I was the superior candidate in every way.
And I wasn't hired.
'Cause I reiterated my answers too much.
Am I boring you? Is that it?
I don't recall repeating myself on more than one thing. Seriously. And this came from a Hiring Manager who told me the same story about not finding parking. Twice.
At some point, it becomes Absurdist Theatre.
Then I called the other two jobs. The job I wanted the least (high cachet place, but lousy pay) at least wrote to me, telling me that I didn't get it. Um, okay. Thanks for telling me.
After I removed every tooth in your head to get you to tell me.
The other place didn't even have THAT much courtesy.
They just never called or wrote back. Hence I wrote them off, on Friday the 15th.
And yanno something?
I felt better than I had in weeks.
It had been dragging me down. It had HURT. It had bewildered me.
Now I just see it as Absurdist Theatre. And that's somewhat freeing.
Now, I like to work. I truly do. This is one of the reasons why I am working like a dog on my father's website. I enjoy being productive. I am one of those people who has trouble just hanging out poolside, unless I am either reading or sleeping (sleeping is productive, people!). Doing absolutely nothing tends to not suit me.
Yet I am out of work more than, and more often than, pretty much everyone I know.
I am not dumb. I am not uneducated. I am not just sitting around waiting for jobs to come to me. I clean up well. I am not a fool in interviews (the reiteration thing, truly, is beyond the pale).
In the past, when I've had stalled job searches, I've gone to school. But no school exists for this. Or, at least, for less than a good 3 grand (no lie) in tuition, and there is no certification at the end of that rainbow. Cripes! I'd rather pay 2 months' worth of my mortgage. Silly me! I want a house to live in! How insane am I???
And so, gentle reader, this crap continues.
It's a bit like a stalled weight loss program. You try this, that and the other thing. You try things that seem to make no sense. You ask for advice. You don't ask for advice. You wonder what the hell you did wrong, what kind of karmic debt you owe, and to whom. You ponder whether it'll ever happen again.
Yet of course it'll happen again. Life is not over. There is no need to just up and give up.
The same is true of both.
Reiteration? SERIOUSLY? Are you s****ing me??? You, sir, do not want to hire ANYONE.
Welcome to Absurdist Theatre.
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