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Doing Well Now, But.....

Saturday, August 06, 2011

Summer is drawing to a close, so I am trying to get all of my fitness, music, and personal time routines set so hopefully I can keep them going into the school year. This has not been too successful for me in the past few years, but my health suffered terribly for that. I need to make taking care of myself and absolute priority.

I was having problems with my feet slipping in my shoes during body pump. When I did my lunges with the barbell, my feet slid to the front of my shoes squishing my toes painfully into the front of my shoe. I tried many adjustments, but did not find a solution. So I bought a new pair of gym shoes for low impact workouts like the body pump and Zumba.

They are Nike Free shoes, and very comfortable on my feet. I tried them in Zumba and in body pump today and believe they are a good solution to the problem with my feet sliding in my shoes. My feet felt both comfortable and stable.

I tried Zumba for the first time today. It was recommended I not do that when my back and hip were out; but I decided to try it now that my back and hip seem to be working again. It was FUN! But it was too hot in the gym, really too hot. I'm not just whining; I got overheated. The instructor teaches a Zumba class in a different location in AC. That will be what I do until the weather moderates.

So, my personal goals for the school year are:

emoticon Body Pump

emoticon Water Aerobics

emoticon Zumba

emoticon Yoga (and meditation)

emoticon Go for walks

I will have to alternate these to fit them into my schedule.

emoticon Practice/Play my guitar for at least 1 hour each day.

emoticon Read

And to take time to stop and enjoy the beauty of the world around me.

I'll probably need your help once the school year starts. If I start to spin out of control, remind me to check my goals and turn my focus inward instead of trying to meet everyones needs except my own.

Thanks! I emoticon my friends!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

INSH8P 8/9/2011 9:36PM

    Thanks for the sharing; great to know that we aren't alone.

I giggled with delight reading about the stability ball in one of your other posts. I can just see the kitty, the ball, and the yoga blocks meeting up with one another.

That's how I usually feel about the start of the academic year, no matter how much I think I have done in preparation. But you, PudleCrazy have really done your prep - I think you'll feel much better for the way that your system is so tailored to where you are coming from, and what you want to feel at the end of each day, each week.

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    Hey, what are friends for?
Got your back!

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    OMG I feel you with trying to balance around increased commitments. WE CAN DO IT!!!!! Those of us who are having similar problems at once should UNITE!!! :D

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OLDERDANDRT 8/7/2011 4:50PM

    emoticon emoticon

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MEOWMAMA3 8/7/2011 1:20PM

    You are awesome! I'm here for you when the boat starts a-'rockin! I hope this school year is the best one yet! This is the point of the summer for me that I feel happy and look forward to the fresh start of the fall. The District is in complete chaos, uncertainty abounds, and I don't care! I shall shut my door, make my room festive, and do my best. I'm VERY happy to be going back to 4th grade, self-contained. I HATED cycling those 3 classes of 5th graders. Took them 25 minutes to finally settle into work and that was half of the time I had with them after the remedial programs sucked out another 90 minutes every day. We've made AYP for 2 years now so we are technically out of "Empowerment" aka "No Powermeant for Teachers" Jail. What that means with all our budget cuts, who knows. Hopefully it means they won't have enough administrative staff to make my life miserable! Ha! I LOVE 4th grade and my new grade partner is the best, a male who works closely with parents and is ultra organized, helpful and hardworking.
Enjoy your new kicks! Did you get your chair yet?

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BILLTMAN 8/7/2011 12:29PM

    I only wish I was half as organized as you are. Looks like you have a great plan. Go for it girl. You've been successful thus far I'm sure you will be successful as you go forth.


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DELAPIS 8/7/2011 8:27AM

    You have GREAT organizational skills and are a wonderful teacher, so I have NO DOUBT you'll be successful with this or a similar routine once you start back to school. If you find your plate too full (excuse the pun) just lighten it up a bit and choose what works best for you. We teachers seem to always juggle a lot. Just make sure you're happy with your daily routine and don't make it stressful. Make sure it's flexible.
I wish you the best.
Dee emoticon

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    You've got a plan, and that means you can work it! If you can dream it, you can do it, and we're all here to remind you of that.


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MARY1313 8/7/2011 5:40AM

    Absolutely! you do need to meet your needs. You try to do everything for everyone, but I think you are important too!


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    So glad you got what works best for your feet! They look great, too! emoticon

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JUST_TRI_IT 8/6/2011 11:18PM

    OH gosh. I know what you mean about our routines once the school bell rings. I've been trying for 30 years to keep my summer routine going.. LOL... I guess I can try one more time.. right?

Love your list. It inspired me to figure out what mine will be :)


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WATERMELLEN 8/6/2011 8:43PM

    Your work is so demanding and you do it with all your heart and soul!! So: gotta take care of yourself. Like the attendants say on the plane: don't attempt to assist your seat mate with her oxygen mask till you have your own in place . . . .

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LMB-ESQ 8/6/2011 7:10PM

    I'm with you! I need to do the same thing... make sure school doesn't interfere with taking care of myself.

Here's to new shoes! They sure put a whole new outlook on workouts, don't they?

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The Best Rewards (With Photos)

Wednesday, August 03, 2011

A couple of friends asked for pics of my rewards and of my stability ball chair.

I still believe the very best rewards are the ones we see as a result of our hard work and efforts. They are the proof that we have really put the time and commitment into our journeys to great health.

My new skinny jeans. My weight has not changed so much as my shape - definitely toning up!

Here's my new stability ball chair. I really love it for sitting in, but am not so certain I find the benefit of adding the exercise bands to it when I already have a good strength program going. I'll keep the bands with me at work, perhaps they'll make for a nice break in the day when I have a moment to use them.

My new water bottle is both a reward for and motivation for staying hydrated. Getting in enough water has been a problem for me in the past. Now that I make a point of drinking enough water, I really see the difference in my energy levels and my skin tone.

I got a new canvas duffle-style mat carrier when I got my new yoga mat. My old mat has a flimsy mesh carrier. This one even has a pocket to put my car keys and wallet in. I love the colors and it's size.

The weight lifting has been paying off in muscle tone. Now maybe Michelle Obama will be jealous of my arms instead of me being jealous of hers. LOL! I am not really a jealous person; I have to say, she is totally my arm definition role model.

The reward of cleaning and organizing my exercise space is that I love my space and don't feel distracted by clutter. It's just a nice place to be. If I need to go to my Happy Place, I know exactly where to find it.

And a couple of new rewards~

I had my yearly check-up with the doctor today. Heart rate - 72, blood pressure 110/70, and my dexascan shows an increase in bone mass. No prescription meds for anything. Just diet and exercise. My cholesterol tests are not back yet.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

SUNRIZING 8/24/2011 11:23AM

    I love those rewards! The biggest reward I saw was that muscle! In the past i never knew how satifying it could be to gain muscle while wittling away your waist! But it feels awesome doesn't it???!!!

You look amazing!

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MEOWMAMA3 8/7/2011 1:24PM

    Never mind my question about your chair...I read blogs backwards....all those years with dyslexic children...lol!
You certainly deserve all those rewards my dear! You are looking fab and fit and great numbers from the doc.
Excellent!!!!!!!!!! emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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LMB-ESQ 8/5/2011 7:49PM

    You look great! All that hard work has sure paid off!

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SOON2BEFITSLP 8/5/2011 10:00AM

    I love your new water bottle and your workout equipment! I was just given a giant water bottle as a gift from a student yesterday! I am excited to start using it!

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MARY1313 8/5/2011 9:45AM

    You look marvelous!!!!

Thanks for the pics!


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1HAPPYWOMAN 8/4/2011 10:30PM

    You need a vet....

because those pythons are SICK!

Seriously, your arms are stellar! Also, your beautiful workout space/music room has inspired me to get to work on mine.

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IMEATINGWELL 8/4/2011 11:23AM

    Good job. That chair really looks interesting.

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IUHRYTR 8/3/2011 9:36PM

    Terrific results! emoticon -- Lou

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    Happy, happy, happy you have gotten so far. You rock!

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    Oh, wow! This is one of the best blogs I've read in a long time! Way to GO! emoticon

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    WOOO HOOOOO!!!! You're looking GREAT and those are some FANTASTIC rewards!!! :D

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ANASINGS 8/3/2011 4:18PM

    You look strong and beautiful! This was a lovely blog, thanks for sharing. I want that chair now. emoticon

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BILLTMAN 8/3/2011 4:13PM

    All I've got to say is You're hot! You look great. Mercy!

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OLDERDANDRT 8/3/2011 4:07PM

    emoticon emoticon

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SUNRIZING 8/3/2011 3:56PM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon

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MAWRTIAN 8/3/2011 3:32PM

    You look great! I love your new toys too! The ball chair looks cool, maybe I should get one for when I'm watching trueblood...

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INITANURSE11 8/3/2011 2:29PM

    love love love the chair. You look great keep up the good work. emoticon

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Tuesday, August 02, 2011

I have been a bit confused by the whole concept of rewarding one's self for progress, since progress is its own reward. Progress always makes me want to do more, whereas plateaus are where I need the greatest boost.

I DID actually consciously reward myself for staying on track with exercise for the month of July; four rewards to be exact.

1) A new pair of jeans because my waist and hips have whittled down. Skinny jeans, and very cute.

2) A new yoga mat and carrier

3) A new water bottle - metal with a sippy straw, which is easier to drink from during weight lifting workouts since I don't have to remove the top.

4) My stability ball chair

The first reward, the jeans, I don't know about. Does that motivate me to do better? Not so sure, but my husband likes them. Perhaps they will motivate him to encourage me not to slack off on the exercise once the school year begins. I'll need some extra encouragement because I get tired by the end of the school day and just want to curl up with a book.

The last three rewards feel right as rewards; they build on the pleasure of sticking to my program.

How about you, my friends?

Do you reward yourself for meeting your goals, and what rewards are motivating to you?

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

SUNRIZING 8/24/2011 11:21AM

    i like momma little's ideas too! A hair cut? get yur nails done? stuff like that- even if you are doing your own pampering- great stuff!

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    I can't say I have really rewarded myself for a job well done. Right now I'm just happy my ID which hangs on a chain does not bounce off my spare tire anymore!

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    If I need something, I do just go out and buy it. But I have to be super careful with finances (poor former college student on my way to grad school :P) so having a goal gives me an excuse to get past my guilt of buying fun things. :P

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MARY1313 8/3/2011 11:03AM

    I reward myself with something small like a star on the calendar for a great week. I haven't lost enough to be getting anything new yet. Plus, new diabetes meds is making me gain and I fight to lose. ugh!


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LUCKYSWIMGIRL11 8/3/2011 8:57AM

    I think rewards can be dangerous for me because I've always linked rewards with food: ice cream treat, movie and popcorn, going out to dinner with Mike, etc. So I'm still kind of struggling to redefine my concept of (and appreciation of) rewards and to change how I reward my own daughters for positive behaviors and choices.

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1HAPPYWOMAN 8/3/2011 2:10AM

    I'm excited about buying new clothes in smaller sizes, but it's not so much a reward as a necessity. I keep putting items that are too big in the donate-to-charity pile.

I am however, using stickers as motivation on my 100 day exercise challenge. It takes me back to childhood, and I find the sparkly ones VERY rewarding! Hee hee!

I agree with LMB100; if i want something, I buy it or budget for it. Weight loss and fitness are their own rewards!!! And oh how sweet they are!

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    I agree, I need rewards to get me through plateaus, more than anything, to keep me hanging in there. I like things that help me feel pretty, like a pedicure.

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LMB-ESQ 8/2/2011 11:14PM

    I'm with you. I think progress is it's own reward. Call me spoiled, but when I want something, I just go get it. Or if it's something expensive, I make a plan to save the money for it, and then I just go get it. I've never gotten the concept of tying rewards to weight loss or fitness either.

Post a picture of you wearing your new cute jeans!

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Getting Organized

Monday, August 01, 2011

I spent a large part of the Sunday deep cleaning and organizing my exercise/meditation/music room. I have been taking care of my son's kitty, who is a big time shedder.

He is a love, but he leaves orange hair everywhere! My kitty, Luna, shed terribly when I adopted her in December, but with better nutrition, she hardly sheds at all. My son's cat has been well nourished, so that isn't the issue. I think he just has a really thick undercoat.

At any rate, I had a lot of vacuuming to do as well as getting my space organized.

When I got most of my exercise gear put it one place, I was amazed at what an awesome collection I have. Not counting my videos, the equipment now organized in my exercise space includes:

emoticon step platform and risers

emoticon 5 pound medicine ball

emoticon sets of hand weights of various sizes

emoticon stability disk

emoticon stability ball

emoticon therabands

emoticon foam roller

emoticon resistance tubes

emoticon yoga mat

emoticon 3 yoga blocks

emoticon yoga bolster

emoticon yoga strap

With everything clean and organized, it is even more motivating to work out between gym sessions.

My music room is organized in part of this space as well. It works for me because music, meditation, yoga, and exercise are all ways that I relax, heal, grow, and reduce stress. I love having my own personal space in the house that I can go to when I need quiet or alone time. Well, the kitties have claimed some of it, but that's life.

My music section is awesome, too. Not counting my music books, guitar strings, etc. there is:

emoticon my piano

emoticon alto recorder

emoticon soprano recorder

emoticon tenor ukulele

emoticon concert ukulele

emoticon mandolin

emoticon bass guitar

emoticon acoustic electric guitar

emoticon steel string acoustic guitar

emoticon flamenco guitar


After a strenuous barbell workout on Saturday and scrubbing, moving, and organizing on Sunday, I didn't do any additional exercises with the exception of stretches. But once I got my room organized, I did spend an hour and a half practicing/playing my flamenco guitar. I am motivated to play it just looking at it, or even just smelling it. Its aroma is almost intoxicating.

Oh yes, and I also cleaned and vacuumed my car, washed the windows, and organized the trunk. Part of my trunk also has exercise equipment. I keep my weights, a spare pair of gym shoes, protein snacks, and a yoga mat in there so I am never unprepared at the gym or yoga studio.

Did I say laundry? I did that today too.

I'm giving myself a special blue ribbon for being so uncharacteristically domestic.

emoticon Domestic Diva emoticon

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

PAPERCLIPSUE 8/9/2011 4:47PM

    I hope by reading this blog I "catch" what you have!

Love cats--oh, but the shedding! My Boston terrier keeps out of her way. My poodle just sits there and looks at her.

We are musicians, too, and have several instruments and lots of music. They are the only things that are organized at my house.
I am a retired music teacher - yet still involved in music.

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MARY1313 8/3/2011 9:52AM

    Great achievements! you deserve those blue ribbons. Yep, cats shed and that's why I decided I didn't want one.


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BILLTMAN 8/2/2011 5:47AM

    Don't you think you could have gotten a little bit more done. Here is a list of my exercise equipment.

Now here's a list of my musical equipment
Electronic Keyboard
Conn 88H trombone
King 3B trombone
acoustical guitar
12 string acoustical guitar
soprano recorder
tons of and stacks of music

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    I need a nap just reading this! emoticon

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IUHRYTR 8/1/2011 10:23PM

    WOW! Such energy. Good going. Kitty is the same color as one of mine, Brownie. So loving, too. Likes to stretch out next to me and get his belly rubbed as i read in bed. emoticon -- Lou

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OLDERDANDRT 8/1/2011 5:40PM

    emoticon emoticon

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    That little kitteh looks super adorable!!!

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GOLIGHTLY344 8/1/2011 1:03PM

    That's amazing! And I laughed aloud at the music inventory! That's soooo much fun.

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    Awesome achievement!

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MAWRTIAN 8/1/2011 2:24AM

    Wow, I'm worn out just reading about your day! You are such inspiration!

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MEOWMAMA3 8/1/2011 1:13AM

    Yowza! AND midnight blogging!
Gimme summa whatchoo got!
Seriously, how empowering to be productive and organized. Good Job Teacher Sister!

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Busy? Yup!

Saturday, July 30, 2011

I didn't sleep well last night. It was a combination of having had a delicious iced coffee at Caribou Coffee mid afternoon and knowing I had to get up early today for the first session of Body Pump. I have gotten out of the habit of rising at dawn and have been enjoying being able to sleep in. Since today we had plans to celebrate a friend's birthday with lunch at the Thai restaurant, I had to attend the earlier session at the gym. I set my iPod to wake me at 7:00, but just knowing I had to be up early made it hard to sleep.

I had a great time in class, though, and it is good practice for me to get an earlier start. Later this week, I plan to go to the 6:15 am class because once the school year starts, that is the time I will be able to attend.

Lunch was delicious, but rich. I didn't eat too much; I ate half and brought half back for dinner. We did stop for ice cream (it was a birthday after all) but I got the kids' size in a cup instead of a cone.

This evening I played/practiced my guitar for an hour and a half. Right now I am pleased with my progress. There are those plateaus when I wonder if I'll ever get proficient, but right now I feel like I am making some breakthroughs in technique. My friend, Sue, and I are thinking of taking a 6 week rhythm guitar workshop starting mid-August. We may decide it is just one too many things as the school year starts up, but it is an enticing idea. Expand my horizons a little.

I took this photo of Stella last week. I found her lying on the couch under a pillow. She's such a character!

At any rate, that is how I am feeling right now, so I'm headed to bed, hopefully to sleep better tonight than I did last night.


  Member Comments About This Blog Post:


    I have the hardest time sleeping when I know I have to be up early. I'm glad to hear you rocked it! And NOM NOM NOM thai food!

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MEOWMAMA3 7/31/2011 11:33PM

    6:15. Wow. I'm in awe!
Stella is a cutie.
LOVE the crazy quilt!! emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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    Awe, how cute.

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WATERMELLEN 7/31/2011 8:00PM

    Stella is ever adorable: truly a star!!

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IUHRYTR 7/31/2011 6:16PM

    Your determination is admirable. Keep up the good effort. -- Lou

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    Good for you getting up like that! I never mind doing my fitness in the evening, thank goodness, because I am not a morning person at all! lol I did not sleep well last night, either because of a wiggly grandson staying with us who likes to poke his toes in my side in his sleep! emoticon

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MARY1313 7/30/2011 11:18PM

    Good idea getting up early for your class. I know school it coming and it will be hard to get back in the swing. Glad you are breaking through with your guitar. Rhythm guitar is what I mostly play although I do a lot of finger picking on my folk songs and such. I just play by ear and that's fine with me. I picked it up about 37 years ago and watched this guy on tv every morning and just did what he did. I've loved it ever since. Then when I hear a song I like, I take it down in shorthand and play it.


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THISYEARSMODEL 7/30/2011 11:01PM

    Sounds like you're doing great! Congrats!

There really are no accidents...Right before I clicked on your blog I was thinking about my frustration with my progress (or lack thereof, depending on the day) with my photography hobby...then I read about your guitar progress. That's exactly how it is with learning photography--Plateaus! I think I'll come up with a way to expand my horizons too. Sounds like just what the doctor ordered.

As for Stella...well, she's just fabulous!

Thank you for your continued encouraging words on my blogs! It's appreciated!


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