SARAWALKS   49,524
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The Weight...NOT The Band, but The Vest...

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Well, that's it! My extra 10 lbs. Looks better than it did when it was part of my body, in June of this year! Kind of a violent blue, but at least the one I got didn't smell funny, like some of the vests sold through Amazon...

And I THINK I like it! emoticon

Thanks to the message boards, I found out that it won't increase my calorie burn very much. I heard from some serious lifters and some serious runners and one very serious hiker...all quite helpful...and probably none of them knew that I am a 65-year-old former couch potato/dancer manqué...or they would have said, "just don't bother!" But they were all very nice, and helpful.

I just tried it on my favorite walk, which is 1.53 miles and involves going up one fairly steep hill. I did the circuit once without the vest, running a few intervals - it timed out at 23 minutes (14' per mile), which at my 141 lb. weight, burned 112 calories, according to, a very helpful site. Interesting that this site thinks I burned more calories than sparkpeople's calculator!

Then I put on the vest and did it again. Whoof. Right away I could feel my leg muscles working harder, and soon I found that I had to be more mindful of "tight tummy" in order for my lower back not to twinge a bit. My posture is good so I was not tempted to round my back, and the vest's design actually helps you not to do that.

The sweat factor was constant - not usually the case when I walk. I was able to keep my pace up to my usual level however. The hill was the hardest, my legs were fussing at me, but I made it without stopping.

Breathing became more mindful as well. I think walking in this item is going to be a good thing, even if for reasons other than calorie burn.

Same walk, time 25 min. (16' per mile), at 151 lbs. = 120 calories.

I'm still going to focus on more running intervals - but this will work nicely as a supplement to that, especially on abs focus day. Carrying my backpack of groceries ought to be easier after doing this!

So on the whole, I'm glad I bought it!

That's not me -- not yet, anyway! emoticon emoticon

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

SARAWALKS 10/18/2010 12:01PM

    Interesting how the sizes fall in centimeters! I think I would go with the smaller one, since it would be very frustrating to have feet not reach the ground. You can always inflate to the max...
I think you will LOVE might even SIT on it... emoticon emoticon

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CLAUDECF 10/18/2010 10:34AM

    How could I forget that you sat on your stability ball? emoticon
I cannot decide what size to buy. They say 45cm diameter from 1mbla bla to 1m65 and 55cm from 1m65! So which one do I choose. I'm exactly 1m65! In between? emoticon

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SARAWALKS 10/18/2010 9:26AM

    @claudecf - you will always be the Gadget Queen! Especially the Queen of Electronic Gadgets. QEG! emoticon

Yes, I have a Swiss ball (otherwise known as stability ball, I think they are the same thing). It is known also as my desk "chair." I emoticon it!

It is threatening rain here...but still a bit too cold to dig...however I'm going to have to try it anyway! If the dirt gets wet, it will be another 2-3 days before I can try again. emoticon

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CLAUDECF 10/18/2010 8:57AM

    As I am currently wearing my 73 kilos without trying to shed any of them, as you know, I'll pass on the vest. You certainly are more dedicated than I am, but I must admit, you are almost (I said almost) more of a gadget girl than I am. Still, I'm considering a Swiss ball my size. Do you have one? emoticon

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SARAWALKS 10/17/2010 10:15AM

    Yes, it boggles the mind. emoticon I do think the feeling of weight was less when they were distributed all over my body...

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CELLO23 10/17/2010 6:33AM

    Never heard of this! Intriguing. What really struck me was the definite physical effect you noticed of those extra ten pounds, and the thought you used to (like me) be carrying them ALL THE TIME! emoticon Really brings it home. emoticon

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SARAWALKS 10/16/2010 5:05PM

    emoticon If you read the Amazon reviews of this item, you'll discover that I was TERRIBLY lucky to get one that didn't smell of some kind of weird chemical...
I am NO scientist, but I guess I'm motivated in this one particular area to dig out these little factoids! emoticon emoticon

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CJWORDPLAY 10/16/2010 4:56PM

    You are such a scientist - I like your with and without experiment. And it makes me feel even better about the 20+ pounds I am NOT wearing anymore. emoticon

P.S. I agree with your choice of the one that doesn't smell funny. I usually have to work out in my stuff before it starts smelling "funny". (sorry about that - couldn't resist)


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Funny five-fingered feet!

Wednesday, October 06, 2010

Well, CJ, you asked for it! The GOOD part of my busy busy busy day!

First off, I was up at FIVE AM. And I stayed up. I had a rehearsal to do at 9:30 and some work that i wanted to get out of the way -- so I just used my sleeplessness productively for a change.

After the rehearsal it was raining and chilly but i was determined to go to Appalachian Outdoors. I have been wanting some Vibram Five Finger shoes ever since June...I tried on a pair...but at that time couldn't afford them. Now, things have improved - and I saw LADYZHERRA's blog about them yesterday, which reminded me, oh YEAH, I want those puppies!

I've been training to wear them for a couple of years, ever since going to France and getting the most painful blood blister possible, and realizing it came from one of my toes wanting to roll under another. Since then I've been wearing toe socks, flipflops with thongs between all the toes, etc. to try to get my feet back to where they should be.

So at the store, I had NO trouble getting them on. Here they are!

Yes, my feet are crossed at ankles. Had to really crop this to get it to fit.

They feel great! I wore them for 2 hours - now have just put them on again to take the photo. So that is part of the "good" of the day.

The second part is this:

Just an ordinary printer/scanner/copier. Yep. But you've no idea how frustrated I have been with my ancient Epson, which slowed my computer to a crawl every time I turned it on, and capriciously printed all, or none, or an unpredictable "some" of a print job, with no rhyme or reason for its vagaries.

And this is a WIRELESS printer so I can print from laptop and desktop! WOOT!

And I installed it all by myself. And it works. I'm liberating my inner geekette...

This all goes with sparkpeople and getting more organized so I will have more time for lovely things like cooking delicious healthy food and running and walking and strength training and such. Those little blue shoes are going to be GREAT for indoor cardio - I've been wearing toe socks but they slip a bit on the carpet. These are very stable!

SOOOOO it was a fantastic five-fingered frivolous day! emoticon
I hope yours was just the same!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

SARAWALKS 10/7/2010 10:56AM

    @CELLO - they DO feel comfy! I love the feeling of something between each toe, it's sort of like a perpetual massage...cozy...
@CLAUDECF - I have dual-tasked but not triple-tasked yet! perhaps today...
then again it may be the day for my geekette to fly away...

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CELLO23 10/7/2010 5:24AM

    Never seen these before - do they feel comfy? What are they for? I remember having toe socks in the eighties emoticon - it felt odd to have separated toes.
Glad you've liberated your inner geekette - out and proud, say I! emoticon One day I'll work out how to put pix in blogs too...

Comment edited on: 10/7/2010 5:32:24 AM

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CLAUDECF 10/7/2010 1:45AM

    Congratulations on a very productive day. Great shoes, new printer! This is just great. You're going to be even more efficient! Go girl!
Have you used the printer, wearing the shoes and sitting on your Swiss ball? Yes? That's called multiple-tasking emoticon

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SUSANS111 10/6/2010 10:38PM

    WooHoo!!! Love those blue does! I got them in black a couple years ago and I love them. They are great for yoga too.

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LYNNEJ5 10/6/2010 9:12PM

    Love the feet, but hey if they work that is the main thing. As for your printer, isn't it terrible when you have something and it just does what it wants to do, not what you want it to do. Glad you have a new one and glad it is working out well for you. Have fun with it and have a great day. Love and God Bless Lynne

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CJWORDPLAY 10/6/2010 8:40PM

    Love your fingered feet - although I must say I'm glad you explained about the foot crossing thing. And you sure are right - by all estimations these busy-nesses are good. emoticon CJ

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"I'll think about this tomorrow..."

Sunday, October 03, 2010

said Scarlett O'Hara...

Well, sparkfriends, I have gone "over the top" again! It's been a long time since this happened. It's my escape valve. i have been TOO GOOD lately and it builds up. so suddenly tonight I broke started with tapenade and crackers, it escalated to B & B (but fortunately only 2 little tots left in the bottle), it proceeded to popcorn...and is about to burn itself out.

I take full responsibility. Splurges are part of life. And one reason I have "over the top" on my favorites list is that it ruins the whole thing to have to count it.

So Scarlett, maybe you and I will fit into that dress made from the green velvet one or two days, very likely...and for now, it was LOVELY to say "I'll think about this tomorrow!"

emoticon everybody!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

CELLO23 10/4/2010 5:03PM

    being too good emoticon for too long is baaad emoticon. Just increases the likelihood of cracking. Little splurgettes are good for the soul. emoticon

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SARAWALKS 10/4/2010 8:56AM

    Well, tomorrow is here...but I'm still glad I did it! Off to walk/run in a bit...although it's chilly and rainy...but better get used to that!
Aw, Miss CJ, you so sweet to lil ole me! emoticon
Salut, Empress Claude!
emoticon from the Princess of Procrastination

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TAMLKING 10/4/2010 7:33AM

    We all get days like that. I agree, think about it tomorrow for tomorrow is another day.
Although I did detect a little of Rhett's "Frankly my dear" attitude in there as well, and that's good.

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_COSMOPAULATAN_ 10/4/2010 7:20AM

    I loved her dress. If I could find THAT, I would so be here for Halloween. Lord knows I have the hair for it. And congrats on taking responsibility, it's the first step!

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BILLSGAL 10/4/2010 6:03AM

    LOL. Consistency, not perfection, is the key to getting healthy. No harm done at all...just get back to it tomorrow! Have a great week!

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CLAUDECF 10/4/2010 5:37AM

    I think that "I'll think about it tomorrow" is a wonderful sentence
Signed The Empress of Procrastination! emoticon emoticon

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LYNNEJ5 10/4/2010 12:54AM

    The world did come to an end today as I know it, so don't worry about the spluges. Tomorrow is another day and you can just pick yourself up, dust yourself off and start all over again. No real harm done as you say yourself that you have done it in awhile. Be good to yourself and don't sweat the small stuff. emoticon emoticonLynne

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CJWORDPLAY 10/3/2010 11:26PM

    "Great balls of fire, Miss Scarlett, I mean Miss Sara - I remember just the other day you tellin'me

"Fiddle-dee-dee! Ashley told me he likes to see a girl with a healthy appetite!"

Was thinkin' maybe Miss Melanie and I could get together and stitch you up something scrumptious to wear out of your mammas portières. I'm sure you'll look fit to be smiled at in green velvet.

We'll think about it tomorrow emoticon CJ

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PODGIES 10/3/2010 11:16PM

    It's all good. It happens! Tomorrow starts a new day! It's especially good to hear it hasn't happened in a while. Brush yourself off and get back on that horse, lady!

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KAREN42BOYS 10/3/2010 10:57PM

    you are a kick to have "over the top" in your favorites. very pragmatic.

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SARAWALKS 10/3/2010 10:19PM

    Muahahahahaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa! Thanks! emoticon

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SUSANS111 10/3/2010 10:18PM

    I love your attitude about splurges!

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Whining about structure...and ABS

Saturday, October 02, 2010 of the tasks that belongs to stage 5 - or is it 4? - is to write about an issue in which you are challenged.
Which one???? emoticon

I am definitely challenged when it comes to being creative in more than one area at a time. I have lots of areas, sure, but I gotta sequence them or something. While working on that presentation, every other project just went down the drain. Rest of my life was pretty much on autopilot.

So NOW that it's DONE, no more excuses! I must confront my lack of structure when it comes to exercise - specifically strength training. I just HATE to have a routine! emoticon

I have a lot of stuff I like to do, when the mood strikes me and I have enough energy. But this is NOT a program...or even a plan...and I don't want sparkpeople to give me a plan because then I'll have to do stuff I don't like to do...

What a hopeless individual I am! emoticon

But if I don't do something, I will never make it through the winter without weakening and gaining weight. emoticon

So here is the rather vague and flexible plan:

Mon. - arms
Tues. - legs
Wed. - abs
Thurs. - arms - this week, I used weights & walk belt - 3 mi. Leslie
Fri. - legs - this week, 5 mi. Leslie - legs tired!
Sat. - abs - Oh God, how I do dread abs!

I don't mind abs work when it's part of other stuff - like Leslie's abs mile - I guess I like to have my arms and legs flying! But to just concentrate on it seems like real WORK to me. Life involves ENOUGH work. Yuck.

I have done Pilates but truly I don't enjoy it, I try to tell myself I do, but I don't. I have done crunches and rollups and leg lifts and the thing where you roll yourself into a little ball and rock back and forth. I like modern dance and ballet but Pilates is not that...and there is no time for a regular class in my schedule.

BUT I will always have that fat tummy unless I do something.
So I am going to do Coach Nicole's quick 10-minute Pilates later today. I will, I will, I will. Hold me to it. Please. I may even do some leg lifts. Ptui.

It's going to be hard enough to focus on one area each day. I'm not going to be super strict about it. but I will choose several exercises from each area that I like AND/OR a video that targets that area.

Sun. - REST, at least from exercise - usually it is a work day for me at church however.

And THAT'S IT! The New Structured Me. Hmpf!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

CHIPPEE 10/2/2010 10:27PM

    Okay, Sara, gonna hold you to it. emoticon It's so hard lately, isn't it? Well I'm gonna break out the leslie sansone and join you for at least part of it. Thanks for the blog.
emoticon emoticon

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LYNNEJ5 10/2/2010 3:54PM

    Good Luck! Sounds like you have a plan. Try to stick to it as a challenge and see how it goes. Remember it is not the end of the world if you don't stick to it. Just pick yourself up, put one foot in front of the other and start again. At least you are trying to do something when the rest of the U.S.A (or at least a big portion of it) is doing nothing at all.
You can do it! Lynne


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SARAWALKS 10/2/2010 3:39PM

    Snicker snortle, NO MORE ABS! He he! We'll see!
Thanks for comments, all! MOPPET, I kind of think of chest/biceps/triceps/back all in one hunk. I'm planning to put wall pushups in that hunk and change to regular pushups as soon as I can! I guess I should have said "upper body" instead of just arms. Ditto with legs, I do some things which hit the butt as well - and the Sansone DVDs provide pretty well-rounded (ahem) leg exercise. Thanks for the luck wish, I will need it!

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PODGIES 10/2/2010 2:26PM

    I could use a little structure myself. I need to start incorporating some resistance training into my life, but I just really don't love it. I have to figure out a way to sneak it in on myself the way I sneak in whole wheat flour on my bf. :)

...SO how did Coach Nicole's abs workout treat you!?

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SUSANS111 10/2/2010 1:17PM

    I'm the same way. While I do one thing, everything else falls forgotten into the shadows. I'm not good at juggling either - I like to handle just one thing at a time.

Your plan sounds good for creating some workout structure! You can always switch up what you do on what day. Maybe a little flexibility will help your resistance to routine. You'll still workout your whole body each week.

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M0PPET 10/2/2010 1:00PM

    Good job on the plan but you are forgetting 2 important muscle groups if you are going to do target training. Chest and back. Think about changing to something more like this: day 1: back and bicept. Day 2 chest and triceps. Day 3: shoulders and abs. Day 4: legs. This is likely how a trainer would set you up. Or you could do 3 days a week of full body traing with compound exercises like barbell squats pushups and pullups. Good luck!!

Comment edited on: 10/2/2010 1:15:49 PM

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CJWORDPLAY 10/2/2010 12:24PM

    I hear you about the "Have To's". Especially with PT exercises. And of course, guess what we're working on? Core muscles, of course. (NOTE: I use the term "we" in the royalty sense. The therapist ain't doin' the moves!)

Anyway I've come up with a perverse idea (snicker, snicker) I snarfed from reading Mark Twain. About Tom Sawyer he observes:

"Now he found out a new thing--namely, that to promise not to do a thing is the surest way in the world to make a body want to go and do that very thing."

So what if we promise never to do anymore abs????? emoticon

CJ emoticon

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_COSMOPAULATAN_ 10/2/2010 12:23PM

    Ok then... 3 cheers for structure!!

emoticon Hip Hip Hooray!
emoticon Hip Hip Hooray!
emoticon Hip Hip Hooray!

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SARAWALKS 10/2/2010 12:19PM

    Oh yes you are! The unstructured love company! Helps us feel included! emoticon

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CLAUDECF 10/2/2010 10:52AM

    Oh boy! I thought I was the only person like this. The only things I am really loving are the elliptical and walking. I do knees, because I don't have a choice, but I must admit, abs... I have totally forgotten about the last two weeks
Structured? I guess it's good for you. Not sure I can take being structured. But I'll be watching you! emoticon

An afterthought
It just occurred to me I was not being supportive... emoticon

Comment edited on: 10/2/2010 10:59:21 AM

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Herding cats...

Monday, September 20, 2010

It's nights like tonight that make me want to have a whole bottle of wine and a ton of munchies!


Fortunately my box of Franzia Rhine wine is nearly gone & the only munchies in the house are relatively healthy so I can't do a lot of damage!

One tries to plan ahead, based on info given in last month's meeting, and then discovers this month that different things are wanted requiring schedule changes for at least one group & several individuals.

One barely manages to head off a change that would undo a procedure established, with some difficulty, in the face of some opposition -- that is FINALLY working nearly as it should! Whew. emoticon

I have one month to make this procedure work EXACTLY as it should, with a bunch of volunteers who are like the afore-mentioned cats -- difficult to herd.

But I am giving it the old one-two, and we shall see. emoticon

Finally, we've changed our Christmas Eve midnight mass time to 11 PM instead of midnight. Nicer for the pastor who is getting older & finding it harder to stay up...bad for me who has to do the kids' mass, finishing at 7:30, and then be ready to start the choir rehearsal for midnight prelude at 9:15 instead of 10:15.

I am grateful for having been faithful with my cardio because every bit of physical stamina will be needed this year. emoticon

But retirement looks awfully good, after so many years of...

herding cats...

emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

SARAWALKS 9/21/2010 12:40PM

    Franzia is definitely on my shopping list for tonight! Although after all those pistachio nuts last night...I will try to hold it to one glass... emoticon

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SMILEYBEE 9/21/2010 12:05PM

    Sounds like you have things well in hand ... but I'd get a new box of Franzia just in case.


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SARAWALKS 9/21/2010 9:17AM

    We have 4 masses on Christmas Eve -- actually there used to be 5 -- now there are two at 4 PM (different locations), one at 6:30 and one at 11 PM. I schedule them all but am responsible for the youth choir at the 6:30 and the prelude (10:15 PM) and mass at 11 PM with the adult choir, which is THE highlight of their fall!
A little rest time in between used to be nice...
Ah well...

The cats I have to herd are cantors and organists...

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CJWORDPLAY 9/21/2010 12:13AM

    Herding Cats - a very apt image. Herding Cat (singular) would be nigh unto impossible - but a group of them? Whoa!

You sure bring back memories for me. Like the Christmas Eve we had 4 services! What was I thinking? (actually it wasn't my decision - I just had to make it work). One has to have worked behind the scenes to know what's really involved in this wonderful and inspiring holiday tradition. I hope they know what a treasure you are, Sara.

I lift my cup of green tea to you. Salut!
CJ emoticon

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