Friday, May 20, 2011
Day 34 (Thur 19th May)
Highwoods 40 minute walk
Waitrose and back 30 minute walk
Zumba Challenge, May week 3:
7 routines - approx 28 minutes
Wii Fit Plus:
Perfect 10 - three attempts for a challenge - Drew for first place. :-)
Bird's-Eye Bull's-Eye - flapping your arms like wings and trying to land on targets. What a riot! LOL
Big Top Juggling - standing and balancing on a large ball while trying to catch and juggle other smaller balls. Impossible! :-)
Obstacle Course - finally made it to the second section of this one. I am baaad at this! *grin*
Snowball Fight - 9 hits. A lot of fun I thought.
Tilt City. Tricky as you are tilting three platforms, one with the remote and the other two using the balance board in order to match dropping balls with their same colour baskets. Trying to get your hands to move one board in one direction while simultaneously trying to lean in the opposite direction to tilt the others is conflicting, but fun. :-)
Day 35 (Fri 20th May)
Boy, has today been busy! :-)
Highwoods walk for 50 minutes.
Basic Step - three attempts for today's challenge with my two Sparkfriends. I won! :-)
Then I had a mad moment and went to the online Wii Fit Routine Generator and told it to give me a Hard 60 minute Wii Fit Weight Loss Routine.
I worked through the following list over several hours, taking a number of breaks, including lunch, in between sections:
Sideways Leg Lift (muscle)
King of the Dance (yoga)
Sideways Leg Lift (muscle)
Single Leg Twist (muscle)
Crocodile Twist (yoga)
Sun Salutation (yoga)
Free Jog 20 Minutes (aerobic)
Free Jog 10 Minutes (aerobic)
Skateboard Arena (balance)
Free Jog 30 Minutes (aerobic)
Bird's-Eye Bull's-Eye (training plus)
Jogging 3 minutes (aerobics)
Snowboard Slalom advanced level (balance)
Tricep Extension (muscle)
Single Leg Extension (muscle)
Tricep Extension (muscle)
Palm Tree (yoga)
During both the 10 and 30 minute jogging sections, I combined the jogging with working on my Wii Jogging playlists, so I didn't get the distance or pace in and lost a total of 6 minutes exercise as a result, but the multi-tasking was really helpful, and in spite of that the total time on Wii Fit still came to 1 hour and 30 minutes!
Yes, my legs are complaining! No, I think they'll be fine after a good night's sleep. :-) I hope so, anyway, because I have more experiments planned for tomorrow. :-) It seems there are a couple of ways to put routines together on the Wii so that you can move from one item to the next without stopping to click through from one screen to the next. One combines Yoga and Muscle. You can just do one or the other, or both, and the game will even put a selection together for however many minutes you want to work out in five minute increments up to an hour. The other way seems to have a dozen different 'collections' that can be combined up to three together to create a routine to target areas you particularly want to work on. I really want to work on trying those out over the weekend I think, and maybe even risk another 60 mins hard labour with the random routine generator.
I was dubious about Wii Fit Plus at first, worried that I may have spent a lot of money on something I'd get bored with quickly, but the variety of games and routines and all the challenges and things available are making it an endless source of fun. I am so pleased with it. :-)
Add to that the Zumba Fitness which is a fast paced aerobic workout that is challenging, and yet a total joy to work at, and the Just Dance games, and I am in electronic game heaven! :-)
But I still get out and about too. In spite of a little rain, and it really has been little more than light spitting, I've been up to Highwoods, and it is developing it's latest change of clothing. The greens of the trees are just stunning - verdant - and the grass is high, and filled with Buttercups and large Ox-Eye Daisies. In Boat Field there are thistle plants everywhere you look that should be a riot of purple in a week or two. To put the icing on the cake, the clouds have been quite spectacular lately too, as you will see. :-)
Here's a selection of photos from the last week or so:
In other news...
I managed to avoid Mr. Petrol Head and his flirtacious come-ons yesterday. He was in Boat Field when I was walking on the other side of the hedge. *grin* I have decided to go with the 'I'm flattered' option, in spite of the fact that I have no interest in him whatsoever. As far as I'm concerned, decorating shouldn't come with strings attached, but it is nice to actually have someone flirt - however clumsily - with you. I'd given up on that sort of thing. LOLOL
On the plus side, I've met someone else... A chaming older (than me) man, gentle, chatty, with a lovely old dog that has similar issues to Sophie, and who is a complete sweetheart - both dog and owner are sweethearts actually, if it is allowable to call a man a sweetheart. :-) We've bumped into each other a few times recently, and I really enjoy the chats we have. This is someone I'd like to get to know better. From our discussions, though it hasn't been said in so many words, there doesn't appear to be a Mrs. Sweetheart.
Mr. Sweetheart is one of those people whose whose face lights up when he smiles or laughs, and we've been smiling and laughing a lot. :-)
He is also into Nature, and we chatted today about the devastation of the nearby cobnut tree - something has eaten all the leaves and there is a lot of insect activity around it. We also chatted about the way things have been developing out of whack this year - the early blooming May, and the early blooming Ox Eye Daisies we were standing surrounded by.
And we have Cuckoos up there for the first time in a number of years! Not only are we hearing the male cuckoo's distinctive call in a couple of different parts of Highwoods, but I even saw one! Never in my life happened before, but a few days ago, there he was, as large as life, on the grass in front of me. I didn't click that it was a Cuckoo at first, not till I heard the call a few minutes later and put two and two together, went home and checked the field guide for a picture. :-)
If Mr. Sweetheart hadn't had to head to the doctor's for a scrip refill, we would probably still be stood on the hillside chatting. LOL That was a nice bit of mutual flirting. :-) I'm still smiling thinking about it.
Oooh, to change the subject... Yesterday, a rep from Virgin Mobile rang me about renewing my contract with them. I opted to keep my current phone for a further twelve months, and because I am a good customer - loyal and pays her bills on time so not costing Virgin anything - they have switched me to 200 any network minutes instead of 100, and unlimited (up to 3000) texts for... *drumroll please* £5.21 a month!
Am I pleased? Absolutely delighted! *big grin*
On top of that I got a call from British Gas. Turns out the meter reader made a mistake in Feb and said I'd used more gas than I had, so my current bill has shrunk, plus I have their apologies and an assurance that if I want to switch back to quarterly billing I can do so. :-)
Sadly, my Tax Credits have also shrunk, for reasons I can't fathom. I lost nearly three pounds a week, which doesn't sound like a lot, until you discover it has made you overdrawn so you can't get any money out for the weekend. *sigh* When you live day to day, week to week, and hand to mouth, this can be quite an issue! However, we had enough food in the house, so it could have been worse. :-)
So, as I listen to The Burns Unit on Later with Jules Holland, I'll bid you all goodnight, because we are off to bed in a few minutes. :-) Been a busy day and my legs want their beauty sleep! LOL
Wednesday, May 18, 2011
Been quite a fun-filled few days. I've been struggling with tiredness and a lot of aches and pains, but have felt fine otherwise. It isn't easy to get through a day when you are yawning by lunchtime though. LOL I seem to be more awake today, so hopefully whatever was causing it is over. :-)
Day 28 (Friday 13th May)
Just Dance Challenge - Week two - 8 songs
Zumba Challenge - Week two - 2 routines
Highwoods walk - 50 minutes
Waitrose walk - 30 minutes
Day 29 (Sat 14th May)
1hour and 20 minutes on Tigger testing songs to jog to at a decent pace while using Wii Fit Plus Jogging.
Just dance - 1 song
Wii Fit Plus - Cycling Advanced Course - 7.483 km in 18 minutes
Day 30 (Sun 15th May)
More song testing on Tigger for 85 minutes.
Day 31 (Mon 16th May)
Highwoods walk - 1 hour
Waitrose walk and back - 30 mins
Wii Fit Rhythm Boxing - Beginner - three times to get best high score for a new challenge with ODDLASS. Best score was 338 and she convincingly beat me. :-)
Day 32 (Tue 17th May)
Walked to town and back (Dentist for Tara)
Just Dance Challenge, week three - 8 songs
Land's End to John O'Groats mark two: Reached St Ives and a crab cake recipe. 21.4 miles in 6 days. More or less on target. :-)
Day 33 (Wed 18th May)
Highwoods Walk - 60 mins
Waitrose and back - 30 mins
Just Dance 2 Challenge, week three - 11 songs
Wii Fit Plus - Super Hula Hoop for the Sparkpals challenge - 421 + 355 = 776 A third pal has joined the challenge now. Anyone else want to hop aboard? :-)
ODDLASS had the bright idea of photographing the results and posting them in our photos. :-)
So, one of the stranger events of the last few days...
Met a chap walking his dog and he decided to tag along with Sophie and I as we walked back towards the tunnel. Conversation on his part was mostly about his high-end Mercedes with all its bells and whistles designed to prevent you from having an accident while you drive, coupled with casual references to driving at his car's top speed of 158 miles per hour all over the country! He travels around a lot because he is a member of a clay pigeon shooting team and they compete all over the country.
Wow! Was I impressed with him! A young man full of the joys of life who can shoot and drive fast cars and impress ladies with his expert knowledge on both subjects!
Back the car up mister! First off, I am not ever impressed with people who speed, I don't care how high-end your car is. I drove a Jag for a while (five days) until my ex sold it on, so I get nice cars. What I don't get is reckless endangerment!
Second of all, you are not a teenage petrolhead. You are retirement age, and should have grown out of this nonsense years ago!
But what really floored me was his parting shot. As I was putting Sophie's lead on to leave the park, he said, "Ten years since you split from your husband, eh?" (this was mentioned in passing as my ex was into cars and when you say 'ex' people tend to ask how long ago) "Time you replaced him! Husbands can be quite useful for doing the jobs you don't like - decorating the house, changing plugs..."
I stood there for a moment, wondering how to respond. I mean - was it a casual observation from a sexist man, or was he volunteering for the job?
"I guess that's as good a reason for replacing him as any," I replied. "The house could do with redecorating!"
And I smiled sweetly as Sophie and I turned and walked into the tunnel.
So, my ad for the personal column is this:
Wanted! Husband! Must like decorating!
Tara 's dental appointment didn't go so well. She has to have a filling. This will be the first time she has needed actual work done, so we are both a little worried. It is one of those situations where it would be preferable to get it done asap, but we have a two week wait.
Crab Cakes recipe in case anyone fancies trying it:
225g cooked White Potatoes
1/2 small Onion
1 tbsp Fresh Coriander
1 tbsp Lemon Juice
2 Large Eggs
1 tbsp Vegetable Oil
1 pinch Low-Sodium Salt
1 pinch Black Pepper
Step 1. Mash the potatoes and break the crabmeat into flakes with a fork. Grate the onion and place in a bowl with the mashed potatoes, crabmeat, chopped coriander, lemon juice and seasoning. Mix together well.
Step 2. Beat the eggs, add enough beaten egg to bind the mixture, and divide the mixture into 8 balls.
Step 3. Shape each ball into a crab cake. Dip the cakes in the rest of the beaten egg and coat with the breadcrumbs.
Step 4. Fry the crab cakes for 3-4 minutes on each side.
Step 5. Serve with lemon wedges.
If I can afford to I really want to try this recipe out. Time to check the price of crab in Waitrose. :-)
Hope you are having a Wonderful Wednesday!
Thursday, May 12, 2011
I did it! The walk to Tesco Extra and back via Highwoods clinched it! I reached John O'Groats on my Active Health game at lunchtime today!
Carol Vorderman, who voices the game said:
"Amazing! You walked from Land's End to John O'Groats in 306 days. Perhaps you'd like to try it again and see if you could make the journey in fewer days?"
There was a 'restart' button sitting there, so who can resist? I hit it and whomp!
Back in Land's End to try and beat my record. :-)
I walked 912 miles in 306 days. That is so close to three miles a day, which became my target around halfway through the challenge! I ended up managing 2.9803921 miles per day to be absolutely accurate. I can so beat that score this time around. :-) So let's see, what should I aim for? 4 miles a day? Too ambitious? How about shaving a specific number of days off the time? Try to get there in 250 days? That is around 3.648 miles a day. perhaps that would be a good target. Land's End to John O'Groats in 250 days. Hmmm...
Ready, steady, GO!...
In other exercise, I did my Body Test on the Wii Fit Plus, and danced to five songs on Just dance 2 to make 1141 sweatpoints. I decided against a Random Wii Fit Plus routine however because I was feeling it somewhat behind my right knee after the dancing and didn't want to do myself a mischief. It feels fine now, it was just somewhat tight for a while.
In the food department, I'm off porage for breakfast for a while, so playing with cereal and other stuff instead. Crunchy nut cornflakes with banana sliced on top is one. Rice krispies ditto is another. :-) I seem to recall that they don't fill me as thoroughly as porage, but I also have my nutrigrain bars, and I might look at adding in some yogurt too. Can I eat cooked apple with yogurt? Hmmm... another experiment I think. Apple, apricot and sultana compote with Greek style yogurt for breakfast. Sounds worth a try to me. :-)
So, as Mariokart noises assail my ears in the background as Tara enters her umpteenth Grand Prix, I'll head for my inbox and try to pare it down a bit before bedtime. Been so busy this week that it is really stacked up. :-)
Oh, and Tara has discovered the joy of the Free Jogging on the Wii Fit Plus using the trampoline. She did ten minutes again today, and very nearly 2 kilometres according to the game! She was certainly puffed and sweaty enough for it to be true. :-) That was around 350 metres further than my personal best, so the chase is on! LOL
Hope Thursday has been good for you. :-)
Wednesday, May 11, 2011
Lots of walking again - into town this time. More on that in a minute. :-)
Wii Fit Routine Generator
Easy 30 Minute Wii Fit Weight Loss Routine
Single Leg Extension - Muscle
Torso Twists (Torso & Waist Twists) - Muscle
Downward-facing Dog - Yoga (held it with slightly better form this time)
Island Cycling stage one - Aerobic
Free Step for 10 minutes - Aerobic
Penguin Slide - Balance
Free Run / Jog (10 min) - Aerobic
Balance Bubble Plus - Training Plus
Rhythm Boxing advanced 8 mins - Aerobic
Tightrope Tension - Balance
Sideways Leg-Lift - Muscle
Single Leg Extension - Muscle
Total workout 45 minutes.
It seems the the length of each routine generated is VERY approximate! :-) Something else I find endearing about the routine generator. You never quite know what to expect from it. :-)
As for me, even a week or two ago I would have called a walk into town and back sufficient exercise for the day and done nothing else. I certainly wouldn't have followed it up with a 45 minute fitness routine like this! Times certainly change! LOL
In town we made out like little bandits again. We took back ACME Arsenal, which we bought last Friday and which - it turns out - is arguably the WORST game ever created. Wish we'd seen the reviews before we bought the game. The review was way more entertaining, which is why I have included the link to it! :-)
First time I ever saw someone try to end things by strangling themselves with the nunchuck cord! LOL
Or, if you don't have time for the full length entertaining review, here is the five-second version:
I felt a bit awkward, truth be told, trying to return something because it royally sucked, but being an honest soul I wasn't about to fib and say it was faulty, so I walked up to the counter, and said "We bought a game from you on Friday, ACME Arsenal. It is REALLY awful! I don't know what your store policy is, but is there any chance we can exchange it or something? It is seriously Baaad! We even looked up the reviews on the web after trying to play it, and the reviews were way more entertaining than the game!" And I laughed, and so did the guy behind the counter. *grin*
Luckily for us, the shop we got it from has a ten day no quibble return policy, so we were able to part exchange it for Super Mario Galaxy, which Tara wanted so that she could use it to unlock a player in Mariokart. It amazes me how these games cross over sometimes. :-) Anyway, the returned game had cost a tenner, and the new game was 18 quid, so Tara used her pocket money to make up some of the difference and Mum popped in the remaining £3.
Then we went to the other shop that was doing the extra pound for every game traded in deal, and we got another £10.70, which paid for Sonic and the Secret Rings. Plus we also picked up Rayman Raving Rabbids for a tenner - the first one that was on the Wii - and also a game called Anubis II, which was only a fiver and looked vaguely promising. (Plus I have a real thing for Egyptian gods.) :-)
So no games that are going to get us moving in that lot, but at the moment I am more than happy with the games I already workout with. :-)
What I haven't managed to do today is try out the Wii Sports. Maybe tomorrow... Oh, wait, got a Tesco Walk tomorrow. ... Maybe Friday. :-)
Oh yes, and the reason for the blog title? The Walking Challenge on my DSi Active Health game - Walking from land's End to John O'Groats. I checked how I was doing today and it turns out that I'm only 2.9 miles from John O'Groats! Should reach it tomorrow with a little luck and a following wind! :-)
How does one celebrate walking clear across the British Isles?
Tuesday, May 10, 2011
Day 25 and I got in a lot of non-Wii activity today. :-)
I walked Sophie for about 50 minutes at Highwoods before breakfast, and after breakfast I took Wilbur (my shopping bag on wheels) to Pets At Home (40 minutes walking) and spent £35 of our Bakers Prize Vouchers on food and treats for Sophie - so a very Sophie-centric day. :-) She hasn't been up to much in the way of walks recently. The heat gets to her sometimes, but today wasn't too bad, with a stiff cooling breeze, so it was lovely to get out and meet up with some of our Dog Walking friends. :-)
This afternoon I danced to 7 songs from Just Dance 2 to get my 1000 sweat points and also fill in some of my team challenge for this week.
Then I did an Easy 30 Minute Wii Fit Weight Loss Routine courtesy of the Wii Fit Routine Generator:
Triangle - Yoga
Sun Salutation - Yoga
Triangle - Yoga
Deep Breathing - Yoga
Free Run / Jog (10 min) - Aerobic
Ski Slalom - Balance
Ski Jump - Balance
Downward-facing Dog - Yoga
Sideways Leg-Lift - Strength
Single Leg Extension - Strength
I was actually going to take the day off the Wii, but it called me! LOL I also managed to hold the Downward Facing Dog position to full time, although I am the first to admit it wasn't perfectly formed, but hey, staying the distance is a start, right? :-)
Also, as luck would have it, a surprise package arrived for Tara today. It was the original Wii Sports. Rob bought it for her because it didn't come with the second-hand Wii and he thought we'd like it. :-) Well, I haven't played it yet, but Tara has been playing with it a lot today.
Wii Sports has Tennis, Baseball, Golf, Boxing and Bowling. I'm looking forward to playing a few sets of tennis tomorrow. :-)
And finally, a Wee (not Wii) bit of excitement. *grin* Ever since I started using bra extenders to make my normal bras a little easier to wear and therefore less aggravating to my Chostochondritis, I've had to go strap-diving on a daily basis - hourly sometimes. (For the uninitiated, strap-diving is having to put your hand into your clothing to retrieve a bra strap that has sidled down your arm instead of staying on your shoulder.) It was a small price to pay for a more comfortable fit, but in recent weeks the strap-diving has become a more and more frequent pastime.
Yesterday I was bouncing on Tigger while listening to a favourite song, and the straps on both sides needed rescuing several times in the space of four minutes! This morning I decided I couldn't deal with that again, so I tightened the straps a little, and took off the extender, then waited to see how long it would be before I got uncomfortable. Well, here I am, 13 hours later, and I'm fine! My bra is comfy! I've bounced and jogged and yoga-d and everything, and not one strap dive required! I think my boobs have shrunk! LOL
Mind you, there are other bits I would prefer to have shrink rather than them. If there has been one bright spot in all the weight gain, it was actually having boobs for a change! I guess this is a case of 'last in, first out'! LOL
When we were in town last Friday (she says, changing the subject), we were doing the rounds of the game shops and were given a bag to fill as part of a current deal. Any games traded in using this bag before Thursday will be worth an extra pound each. Tara, being adept at the Doe-eyes look, persuaded me to cull our games again. We hope to gain enough dosh to buy another game for the Wii from the proceeds. I guess I'm doing more walking tomorrow! :-)
Hope Tuesday has been Taste-tastic for you!
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