Thursday, November 24, 2011
I overheard someone say this the other day: "Good health doesn't take a day off". This is true. So why do we take days off from taking care of ourselves? I've always told myself "It's a holiday..." or "It's so-and-so's birthday..." and given myself a reason to take the whole day completely off. Then I feel terrible the next day and I'm less motivated to get back in the swing.
In the meantime, I had a dream that I was taking my husband to the E/R. My worst fear, a heart attack. It saddens me when he says things like "I don't have time to worry about my weight, or my diet, or my exercise" or "I can't worry about that right now, I'll do it when I'm not so busy at work". When he gets mad at me for noticing early warning signs of heart disease in him, it is downright depressing. Thankfully, it was just a dream. He's my husband, and I love him. But I can't make him.
However, I can learn from him. No matter how hectic your life is, no matter what's going on, no matter what holiday it is. You have to find a way to fit health into your life. My life is pretty hectic. I have a houseful of kids, and I have a full schedule of classes, and I do some volunteer work in the area. But I'm also learning to step away from all that "stuff" once a day and take care of ME. And maybe I'm late taking one of my kids somewhere for something, but I still take one extra minute to grab a piece of fruit on my way out the door. I'm trying really hard, and I'm learning a lot about how to fit it into my life, no matter how crazy it gets.
Wednesday, November 23, 2011
Last night, for the first time, I watched The Biggest Loser with my family. Wow, whatta show. I'm not sure I like how the trainers or the producers or whoever seem to pit the contestants against each other. It seems like such a cool thing for contestants to collaborate and encourage each other, not try to get each other packing. It could be nicer, is all. One of my Spark friends has mentioned before how terribly the contestants are treated off-camera by the trainers as well. I probably won't watch again.
This morning at the gym, I found out the gal at the reception desk is expecting her first child, due New Years Day! She's so excited. And she looks beautiful, too. I always looked like Jabba the Hutt when I was pregnant. *eyeroll*
Also at the gym today, an elderly man came and used the stationary rowers nearby while I was on an elliptical. He was asking all kinds of questions about the elliptical, and I was able to honestly share my opinion. I like the elliptical a lot. You burn calories, but you don't have to trash your knees on it like with running. After I went to the other side and did my ST, he got on an elliptical and tried it out. And he liked it too. And I stopped on my way out to encourage him. I think that's the best part about going to the gym, especially in the mornings. We are all there for the same reason, and we develop a fellowship with it.
It's been another good week so far, and I had a 6-lb. weight loss on Monday! It's mostly water I'm sure, since last week was my first week back with the program. This week since it's Thanksgiving and Dan wants a Kahlua cheesecake, I'm hoping for just a pound. None of that big-number weight-loss for me like on the tv show, I want smaller amounts and I want them to be forever.
Saturday, November 19, 2011
Other than a hiccup at the middle of the week, my first week back hasn't been bad. On Wednesday I picked up pizza for everyone because it's the most hectic day. I have 3 classes that day plus CCD, AWANA Cubbies, choir practice, and this week I had 2 assignments due too. So pizza it was, and I had like 4 pieces, plus half a piece that a kid didn't finish. I can't stand throwing food out.
I followed this up on Thursday by missing the gym and opting for washing/folding/putting away clothes, because my one class got canceled and I saw it as an opportunity to catch up on house stuff. I stayed home in comfortable clothes, did a bunch of chores in between loads of laundry, played around on FB, and just relaxed in general. I was supposed to do upper body ST that day, but my arms were STILL feeling tired from Monday, and i just found excuses all day. So I'll take that as my day of rest. I've worked hard this week.
Yesterday I was so proud of myself because I fit a gym visit in between classes! I have a free hour in the morning, but I've always used it to take care of school business, or set up observation hours for one of my classes, or go to the library. But I haven't been sleeping well this week, and I tossed and turned all night the night before, and missed my gym at 5:30am. And told myself I would use that hour to hit the gym. I brought clothes with me, and tried to talk myself out of going the entire time I walked across campus to the gym, and even as I was getting on the elliptical, was talking myself out of staying on more than 10 minutes. I've never been in the gym at that hour, and it's intimidating. There are young college kids everywhere. There are 3 women's locker rooms, one for students and one for faculty. And I'm sure the girls were thinking I was in the wrong locker room. God I just wanted to leave, the whole time I was there! But I stayed on that elliptical for 25 minutes, watched a show on HGTV, and before I knew it I had logged all that time. I told myself all week that I would never stay on a machine more than 20 minutes, but those shows keep me interested and I ended up doing 5 extra minutes. I didn't have time to shower, but I freshened up and changed my clothes, and got to my last class in plenty of time.
My classes are going pretty great, for the most part. I don't do much studying. Truth be told, I think some of the community-college classes are more work than the ones at the university! I have mostly A's, and I like most of my professors. My physics professor has been hard to work with. He doesn't return emails, and he assumes everyone knows everything, and his office hours stink. He has a very dry sense of humor, and he is generally not very student-friendly. But he's a brilliant scientist and I respect that in him. Only 2 more weeks of class, plus the final, and I can put it behind me; but wow it's been horrible. I think every semester, there is at least one professor who reaffirms my belief that just because you have a lot of knowledge, doesn't mean you have the ability to teach it to others.
Oh, I should mention that my knee has been really bugging me this week. Nothing's wrong or out of place, but it's just feeling extra temperamental and achy lately. Ever since I went running last Friday, it just hasn't felt good. I've stayed away from running since then. I hate running anyway so that's just fine with me. There are other ways to get cardio. That's the big calorie-burner though, so I'm gonna have to just go with slower for now. I want to get back under 200 before trying again. That will be a good spring goal.
So next spring, I've been tossing around the idea of doing the Illinois Half Marathon. I have a Spark friend who has already done 2 or 3 of them, and she likes that one a lot. It's not far from here either, so I wouldn't have to get a hotel either. And I could start training for it in January/February if I can get enough weight off by then. I haven't talked to Dan about it yet. He's always supportive of things I want to do, but I'm sure in his heart he thinks I'm nuts. He almost bought cigarettes yesterday, BTW. He's had some stress at work and he was upset about something yesterday. I had to talk him down from the ledge by offering to meet up at Sam's Club for holiday food samples! LOL! Lots of yummy food there, BTW, but I did pretty good and just had teeny bits.
There are 2 major stressors in my life right now that I need to mention, just so I can get it off my chest. First is the money situation. We really don't know how we will manage Christmas with our kids. The oldest one especially wants some expensive stuff, and then there's the other 4 to buy for, plus all our nieces and nephews. We have a credit card, which we just paid off 2 months ago, and I wanted to keep it that way! But then our microwave died and ever since then, Dan's been using it for situations he perceives as "emergencies". It drives me crazy when he does that. This week, he bought printer ink and a used Wii. The ink, because we were completely out and he doesn't see around the problem to find a different way to print documents (like just printing what I need at school where it's free, or sending him stuff to print while he's at work). And the Wii, because we talked about getting one for the kids for Christmas but decided they are too expensive...until he saw a used one for cheap and decided to get it without talking to me. Drives me crazy when he does this. I really just want a simple Christmas where I get each of my kids one small inexpensive gift, and we load up on family time doing activities instead. I just feel like we'll never get out of debt if he keeps finding ways to justify buying stupid stuff we don't need.
The other stressor is my grandmother's health. She's been having some stomach issues, back issues, and seizures for several months, and my aunt has had her in & out of the hospital looking for answers. Yesterday after spending a week in the hospital, she was released and my aunt took her to a rehab facility (read: nursing home). It's been a hard decision but my aunt can't care for her 24/7 like she needs to, because she is also a single mom and a full-time neo-natal nurse. My mom and sisters have been helping out, but it's just not enough anymore. I think she made a good decision. I miss my grandmother, and I wish I could be there with her. I find myself with a lot of free time every afternoon when I'm out of class, but I only have one kid to take care of. Those are times when I could be visiting with her! If she didn't live across the country from me. :(
Yesterday, after feeling sorry for myself about these stressors, I worked at Clare House. It's a food pantry here in town, and I saw on FB the other day that they were short on volunteers, and the time slot worked for me. So I packed a few toys into my youngest boy's backpack and went over there to help. He sat in the living room of Clare House and played with his toys, and I helped pass out food to all the poor who came to the door. They ran out of diapers, formula, toilet paper, feminine products, and blankets. People came in wheelchairs, with kids, and without homes. It was probably one of the most humbling experiences I've had lately. How fortunate we are, without even realizing it. I think I'll end there by saying I have a new project filling up that time slot from now on, because it was also one of the most rewarding things I've done in awhile too. Not that being "just a mom" isn't rewarding, but being a SAHM is also a very under-appreciated job, and all those faces at the door of Clare House were steeped in appreciation. It's true that the act of giving is also a self-gift. Well, back to living my life and hopefully getting some sleep! I should totally be asleep right now. Lots going on in my head, I guess. Nighty-night.
Wednesday, November 16, 2011
Today is my 3rd day of doing really great and following my plan. I can't believe how much better I feel, just being back in my old routine! My depression is almost completely gone, and my body feels a lot better too; although it is still very sore from the ST I did on upper body on Monday. I did lower body yesterday and my legs feel tired, but not miserably sore like my arms still feel. Hopefully by tomorrow I'll be ready to hit upper body again.
My eating has been very good. Last night I felt like snacking and had a couple handfuls of walnuts, but otherwise I did perfect. I found a jar of pickles in my pantry this morning that I was looking for yesterday, so today I plan to add some pickles to the tuna salad I made yesterday. I don't know what it is about pickles, but I've become addicted to having them in my tuna salad. I had TS yesterday for lunch and the whole time, I thought to myself "Something's missing".
This morning at the gym, someone came on the elliptical next to me and started talking to me. He thought I worked at ISU, LOL. I wish. No, I explained, I'm just a student. He works there, and we had a nice conversation about things that make us fall off the exercise wagon. I think I used school as an excuse for too long, and I also used my walking to classes around campus and riding my bike to and from my parking spot as excuses to not exercise. But in all honesty, now I know that's not enough. I need to get my HR up for at least 20-30 minutes, in addition to all the walking and biking around campus. I think that will be my ticket. No more excuses.
Well, I have only 10 minutes to get to my next class so I have to shove off. But I'm still here and wanted you to know that. It's great to be back. :)
Tuesday, November 15, 2011
Yesterday I got on the scale, and it's official: I have gained 15 lbs. since my triathlon in July. But I'm not going to fret about it; however, I am going to do something about it! I can't stand the way my clothes fit, and it really bothers me that I am winded when I climb stairs to get to my classes every day.
Yesterday I had a perfect first day back. I went to the gym, and found that I can park at Avanti's across the street from the gym and walk there, and it's not too far and I don't have to pay for a parking meter. Nice bonus, and I hope the Avanti's people don't mind because really, there's no one there at 5:30am anyway. ;) So I decided that I tend to blow off my ST because I'm too tired, or didn't make it to the gym, or whatever the excuse of the day happens to be. And yesterday, ST was the first thing I did. Got to the gym, no excuses, and did a bunch of stuff that I remember doing before, and then when I was between classes for a bit yesterday, I entered everything in and WOW I can't believe how much stuff I did! Just a few things from memory, and they added up. And my arms are very sore today. The gym opens in about 30 minutes, and I plan to do lower body today along with some cardio and then the pool. The pool is like "dessert" for me. I love being in the water.
BTW, I found out when I was there that my gym doesn't close for the holidays. I honestly thought they would, because it's a big university and all the kids go home after finals. But not true. Because they stay open for all the "townies" that go there. Good thing for this townie. ;)
My eating yesterday was awesome. I stayed away from all cookies and baked items that tear me down, and I had 6 fruit/vegetable servings along with more water than I'm used to lately. I was hungry after lunch and had some PB & banana on whole wheat, and that got me through until dinner. For dinner, I made homemade jambalaya. It is easy to make it homemade, and I never buy that Zatarain's stuff anymore. And it's cheap, and it fills my family up. Although I will admit, 3 of my kids wouldn't eat it last night. *eyeroll* More for me. ;) But anyway, I didn't have class last night so I had time to log it as a food grouping for myself.
I didn't have class last night, but I was required to go and see LeVar Burton (the guy from Star Trek and Reading Rainbow), who was giving a talk about the spoken and written word. Not that it was too hard to twist my arm to go! He was awesome. Totally inspirational. I loved every minute. It was like getting to the end of a really great book; I didn't want the evening to end!
So my day was good, and yes I did think about food, but I kept myself focused on how my stomach felt. If I didn't feel hungry, then I didn't eat. I don't know why it seems so simple sometimes. I did feel very hungry around the middle of my last morning class, and when I got home I ate. But otherwise, I drank water when I wasn't hungry. I need to do that every day for the rest of my life. Haha, good luck to me on that one. In the meantime, it's gonna be a great week. I had a good day, and today I'm going to have another one. Spark On. :)
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