Saturday, January 28, 2012
Considering the hard things I've been dealing with over the past 8 weeks, plus the holiday pitfalls, I've decided that it's a victory to have ended this 5% challenge basically maintaining (began at 156 lbs, ended at 156.6). And today I'm going to make my fitness/nutrition part of my redemption.
Because today I have a grim task: round up TONS of financial records from the past three years (& a few from earlier) to supply to my ex's lawyer. Mind you, ex has ignored MY lawyer's request for financial records for a couple of months now. As of Monday he'll be in violation, but he'll then be given a little more time. Anyway, I have to respond to his lawyer's request whether or not he responds to mine. There are SO many things wrong with our legal system . .
I've decided to redeem the day & cheer myself up by assigning & receiving a reward for each task. I have already cleared the dishwasher & washed plastic/wooden dishes by hand, & made my bed. As a reward for those tasks I'm writing this blog!
For the rest of the day:
1. Print out tax forms 2009-2010. (Haven't yet done my 2011 taxes, so that one will have to wait.)
REWARD: Browse recipes for something delicious to make with the organic chicken I have put out to thaw. Also decide on a legume dish to make for this week.
2. Print out credit card statements 2009-2011. (Some of the NC statements need to be accessed online, & the website is not letting me in, & I don't yet have a phone to call for help--so these will have to wait.)
REWARD: take my exercise fast-walk to Unique Thrift Store, 2.3 miles away, to buy used clothes or sheets or other linens for the rug that housemate is going to weave for me! On the way home stop at the market for any ingredients I need for batch cooking, & at the bank to deposit a freelance check.
3. Print out retirement savings statements for 2009-2011. (Haven't set up online access to that small MetLife account--see if I can do so; if not, that one will have to wait.)
REWARD: Start legumes soaking, unless I've decided on the red lentils, which don't need it. Chop veggies to cook with legumes & chicken. Finish thawing chicken in microwave.
4. Start assembling mortgage-related documents. No need to get them photocopied yet. Some can be printed out from the bank's website.
REWARD: Put together legume & chicken dishes & start cooking them!
5. Read through discovery list & take note of the documentation that I haven't yet addressed. Make my own still-to-be-done list.
REWARD: Get the TQO essay edited & sent off. Record exercise minutes on SP, read a couple of blogs, maybe an article or two. Give some Sparkgoodies. End the day either reading my current novel or watching my current Netflix film.
I can do this, right?
When I went out for my fast walk to the thrift store, I found the sidewalks treacherous. We had several 40F days, which melted the 8-9 inches of snow that had fallen last week--& then last night we had a hard freeze. So wherever the snowmelt had not dried, the sidewalks & roads are really slick.
This means no thrift-store jaunt today. I ended up just going to the market & the bank. It was good to be out in the sunshine for about 16 minutes round trip. And now I'm back to credit card statements, & later I'll do a few Leslie Sansone miles as another destresser/reward.
Tuesday, January 24, 2012
The other day I googled something like "exercise pants women tall." I have two pairs of sweats inherited from my daughter, both of which have holes in the crotch. I have one other pair I picked up in a bin at a grocery store; one leg is slightly shorter than the other. That's it! And now that it's winter, when I go out to exercise I NEED long pants.
My googling led me to the Volleyball America website, where they were selling full-length tall Asics pants for JUST $4.98 a pair! I was amazed. I bought two pairs (red, as the color selection was very limited), plus a $7 pair of blue Asics capris. They just arrived & they're great! I thought some of you might want to check out the sale--just google Volleyball America & you'll get to it.
This was my "sick" day. (1) First thing in the a.m. was my annual mammogram, thus today was my annual torture day. My tissue is dense & my boobs aren't very big, & those machines were NOT designed with an actual woman's body in mind. (Where are the women tech designers?? We need you!) The lab tech did a good job, though--it didn't hurt quite as much as it sometimes does.
(2) This afternoon I went to an ophthalmologist to have my retinas checked, to make sure the little flashes I see after coughing in bed at night are not indicating a retinal problem. He & the techs peered into my eyes with various bright lights, & he said my retinas are very healthy & there are no signs of macular degeneration.
So I have survived my annual torture day without major trauma, & now I have pants to wear when I go out walking tomorrow morning!
Saturday, January 21, 2012
Today's weigh-in was not pretty. Too many treats this past week! I'm still well within a healthy BMI (22.7), but I'm wanting to edge down, not up.
So it's time to get back to tracking. This is DIFFICULT for me because housemate & I eat nearly all our meals at home & cook almost everything from scratch (soaking dried beans, making our own cereal, chopping fresh veggies, etc.). And I love trying out new recipes! So to track, I have to laboriously enter all the ingredients, & track them down elsewhere on the web if they aren't in the SP database (what?? Sparkrecipes doesn't include fresh lemongrass??), & include number of servings & cooking times & everything else even to save a recipe privately on Sparkrecipes. (Since I've been using recipes from a published cookbook, I am not supposed to make them public. But I'll post links to where you can find my current favorite below.) I've just spent more than an hour doing that for ONE recipe! Granted, it was complicated because I made the curry paste from scratch & it has a ton of 1-teaspoon ingredients; then I had to save it to favorites so I could incorporate it as an ingredient in the Thai-style chicken-sweet potato mussamun curry that I made this week.
So please forgive my whining! The SP nutrition tracker is much more expeditious than it used to be, but it's still a big hassle when one's foods are not listed.
Anyway, I have now tracked for today, ahead of time, so I know exactly what I'm going to eat at each meal. I've also discovered along the way that my exercise today will have to involve going to Dominick's to get nonfat cottage cheese, as that is the only readily available food that will increase my protein (& calcium) to the appropriate level without raising my calories & fats past the healthy range. (It's snowing a tiny bit again! But not enough to add to the accumulation or slow me down much.)
I've cheered on MTULLY & others as they've been getting back to tracking food this past week, & now it's my turn to join in! I will try to track the night before, or after breakfast for the rest of the day, so I'm not recording a fait accompli but planning well to eat within range.
Here's the mussaman curry paste:
And here's the book itself--unfortunately I didn't find the individual recipe posted online:
Friday, January 20, 2012
The snow started falling this morning around 10:00, I think. It's a little after 9:00 p.m. now, & finally it seems to have stopped . . . but apparently we may get up to 3 more inches tonight. Total may be as much as 8 inches (20+ cm).
Knowing that it would be very cold this morning & that snow was on the way, I planned to do strength training inside instead of a walk out in the weather. Happy to say that I did it (I've gotten lots of exercise this week, yay!), & then I performed my ablutions (a friend & I used to get a good chuckle out of dignifying showers or just handwashing with that long word), had breakfast, & took off on the L for work. I admit that before leaving, I did check my work e-mail a couple of times to see whether the director might have sent an e-mail telling us that given the impending storm, none of us needed to go to the office today . . . no such luck.
It was a pretty productive day at work, as I watched the snow fly outside my window . . . & fly & fly & fly. It was relentless! The design & production director started going down her hall around 4:00 telling her employees that traffic was already bad & they should leave early. Again, I hoped that my boss might do the same thing, but she didn't.
I happily decided to avoid the bus on my way home, as Lake Shore Drive was sure to be a huge snarl. I have a 10-ride pass for the Metra, a commuter train with a stop near my office; it's separate from the CTA system, so it would be expensive to use both on a regular basis, but it's a nice occasional alternative.
This is another reason that public transport rocks!--when it's available, of course, & specifically when it involves trains: it's SO much better than driving in a storm. Some road commutes between the Loop (downtown) & various outlying points were as high as FOUR HOURS! How miserable!
My only challenge was trekking through the fresh, unshoveled snow across the Midway (a wide green space) to the Metra station. It's the distance of just two blocks from my office, but it really taxed me, so much that by the time I reached the top of the steps to the train platform, I was panting deeply. But the train arrived soon, & the conductor kindly stopped with the door right in front of me (at this stop they usually open just one door for everyone to board, as there usually aren't tons of commuters waiting). From then on I got to just read & rest, then transfer to the L & read & rest some more.
Housemate & I just had a great supper of my mussamun curry chicken over brown rice, green beans, white wine, & a couple slices of pineapple. And I have made a pot of lemony tea, & after I finish Sparking I'm going to cozy up on the sofa with my book & sip tea & read till bedtime!
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