DDOORN's SparkPeople Blog http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal.asp?id=DDOORN DDOORN's Blog on SparkPeople, home of free diet plans and a healthy living community SparkPeople.com http://assets2.sparkpeople.com/assets/nav/logo_spark.gif http://www.sparkpeople.com/ Another Year Younger! http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5799573 It's been a WAY crazy busy week with not much room for celebrations but I already have SO many ways to celebrate the passing of another year. <BR> <BR> So as busy as it's been I slowed down tonight to take stock of my "presents": <BR> <BR> ---of course every time I hop on my bicycle I am so grateful for the pay-off of a body that can immerse my being into the world of nature and friends who share my enthusiasm. And the journeys I've made this year locally and to the Catskills...all have bee... Thu, 16 Oct 2014 23:38:57 EST Zen Treadmill http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5797744 It's been a while since I've used my home gym which I've dubbed my "SparkHaven" :-) The fitness center with it's elliptical, rower, spin bikes and weight machines run a stiff competition and because it's so close to work I can fall right into my workouts pretty easily there. <BR> <BR> Once upon a time, pre-fitness center, I had a long, good streak of morning mojo in which I would wake up and hop right onto my treadmill in SparkHaven. Quad speakers set up in all four corners of the room arou... Mon, 13 Oct 2014 23:08:21 EST DOH! Lesson Learned... http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5794550 Well phooey...the scale is UP! Unfortunately I out-ate the miles I climbed this weekend. <BR> <BR> The extra pounds are TOAST and lesson learned re: gauging food that's necessary for the burn vs. indulging the carbie tiger, which has been dutifully re-shackled! <BR> <BR> Keeping the SPARK! <BR> <BR> Don Wed, 8 Oct 2014 08:55:18 EST Mountain Pics! http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5793904 Here are some pics from our Sunday Ride in the Walton - Downsville area: <BR> <BR> Group Pic <BR> <img src="http://photos-ak.sparkpeople.com/nw/4/2/l424781136.jpg"> <BR> <BR> Curious approach to a home: caboose it! :-) <BR> <BR> <img src="http://photos-ak.sparkpeople.com/nw/9/3/l937760184.jpg"> <BR> <BR> A few from our lunch stop at Launt Pond, atop Bear Spring Mountain. One of us (not me...hooray!) had a flat to repair: <BR> <BR> <img src="http://photos-ak.sparkpeople.com/nw/4/0/l409... Tue, 7 Oct 2014 08:38:18 EST Twin Peaks Climb! http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5793059 Today's ride was a triple challenge: 2 REALLY TOUGH CLIMBS each of which brought me a whisker away from having to get off the bike a walk and one WAY chilly day that caught me under-dressed with shorts when I really should've had pants...course that propelled me above and beyond my USUAL need for speed...! <BR> <BR> I chatted with a local who asked if I was warm enough to which I said: BARELY! If I pedaled hard enough I could just get by! :-) <BR> <BR> No time to post pics yet...perhaps a ... Sun, 5 Oct 2014 22:10:49 EST Ain't No Mickey Mantle...But Who Cares? :-) http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5788937 <img src="http://photos-ak.sparkpeople.com/nw/3/5/l353570643.jpg"> <BR> <BR> The good news is that my first time up to bat for our bike club's softball game I was able to hit the ball and get to base! <BR> <BR> The predictable news? It was the last time my bat connected with a ball...sigh. But I was way okay with that. I succeeded in pushing myself out onto the field when every fiber of my being really, REALLY didn't want to! In the outfield this lefty was stuck with a right-hand glove so ... Mon, 29 Sep 2014 09:31:18 EST Return To Oz! http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5787248 Today I am BACK! Into the same "skinny" size 38 jeans I wore in 2010 when I was one of several members of SparkPeople on Dr. Oz's 100th episode featuring 100 people who had lost 100+ pounds and kept it off...woo hoo! <BR> <BR> Here was my blog from back then featuring some pics: <BR> <BR> <link>www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_jo<BR>urnal_individual.asp?blog_id=2878056 </link> <BR> <BR> Been feeling very much on a roll these days...down from last week's weigh-in of 212 to 209...only 9... Fri, 26 Sep 2014 08:49:03 EST Tough Muscles AND Mind! http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5785983 Not only did I prove the muscles in my body to be tough enough to climb the mountains of the Catskills, but I gave myself another challenge which I pulled off: <BR> <BR> How do I properly fuel my body with the carbohydrates I need to climb those mountains by unleashing the carbie tiger for the weekend and corralling him back up after it's all over? <BR> <BR> This has always been my downfall in the past: to allow grains and sugar in a planned manner and to successfully reign it in to avoid ... Wed, 24 Sep 2014 08:30:48 EST Stewards Of The Earth and Of Our Bodies & Souls http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5785159 Six of us joined forces with our tour leader, let's name him "Pete" to light out for the Catskill Mountains and steep ourselves in the ups and downs of all the challenging climbs and breathtaking descents with nature's palette providing a feast for all of our senses. <BR> <BR> Among us we had some of the most seasoned, knowledgeable riders who have led and inspired many. Pete has led many tours of his own and I only just last year jumped into the world of self-supported bicycle touring with ... Tue, 23 Sep 2014 00:38:53 EST The Will To Make It Happen! http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5779930 For all those Sparkers out there sill looking for something that sets you on fire, lights you up like a neon sign and makes you realize that THIS is what you were born to do: KEEP LOOKING! Keep pushing, exploring, trying out new activities, new adventures. There isn't anything more rewarding than working hard to build a life filled with SPARK and getting out to celebrate it! <BR> <BR> I had originally intended to attempt a VLOG but it didn't appear as though it was loading properly so inste... Sun, 14 Sep 2014 22:19:42 EST Choices http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5775738 Yesterday was such a roller-coaster of experiences both out in the world and the internal dialogue and decision-making almost constantly roiling and percolating. <BR> <BR> I have another opportunity for a self-supported tour coming up which is going to be led by the same fellow that led the incredibly satisfying Cape Cod tour I did last Sept. This one is shorter, however much MUCH more intense! It's going to be in the Catskill mountains, four days of 50-60 miles per day, fully loaded with g... Mon, 8 Sep 2014 09:33:01 EST When Numbers Don't Matter http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5773262 I have gotten SO far away from caring about the numbers when it comes to working out and cycling. Over the weekend our cycling up Canada way wasn't the kind of distance that we've cycled in the past...much to the chagrin of one of our new members who came for her first time. She is working up for her MS 175 ride, 100 one day, 75 the next. I did that ride with her a few years back, but have since given up doing benefit rides (pay me to go have a blast on my bike! ...eh, doesn't sit too well wi... Thu, 4 Sep 2014 10:31:35 EST The Rest of the Story... http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5772498 Here's the thing: to be immersed in nature and to soak up such wonderful sights while reveling in the movement of one's body on a bicycle in a way that has become as much a part of yourself as walking...such a beautiful experience! <BR> <BR> But...to do this in sync with 18 other people? With such fun-loving harmony, respect and good-will? To discover gorgeous vistas together and almost hear a collective sigh of "ahhhh, just look at that...!" <BR> <BR> It rarely gets any better than this.... Wed, 3 Sep 2014 09:22:43 EST Still Basking... http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5771518 Too late to tweak & share my pics, but some of the others who shared our absolutely AWESOME Labor Day weekend @ Tibbett's Point, Cape Vincent, NY on the shores of Lake Ontario near the beginning of the 1,000 Islands have already posted some of their pics. <BR> <BR> So I'll share THEIR links and hope they work for you and you can get a preview of our long, glorious weekend on two-wheels, by the campfire, late night conversations in the kitchen over wine, cheese and all the delicious food sha... Mon, 1 Sep 2014 23:21:51 EST Bicycle Commute: Change in Plans http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5767245 One of the losses I've had with my ongoing use of blood thinners has been my bicycle commute to work. I've struggled with this and finally I think I have a solution that will "work"...at least on occasion. The reason I gave up my commute is that there is a stretch of road near my house where the shoulder is skinny, crumbly and it's just plan necessary to ride in with morning rush hour traffic to the left of the white line. This was hair-raising enough BEFORE taking a blood thinner...but after... Tue, 26 Aug 2014 10:01:36 EST It's About TIME!! http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5766571 I heard a piece on NPR this morning that both made me want to scream in frustration and WOO-HOO that someone has FINALLY caught on: <BR> <BR> Grocers Lead Kids To Produce Aisle With Junk Food-Style Marketing <BR> <BR> <link>www.npr.org/blogs/thesalt/2014/08/25<BR>/341963166/grocers-lead-kids-to-produc<BR>e-aisle-with-junk-food-style-marketing </link> <BR> <BR> I'm like: What has taken you people so long to figure this out?!?! Argh! Big food corporations pay major $$$ to mightily sway o... Mon, 25 Aug 2014 08:51:34 EST Jam-Packed Day of Play! http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5762506 There were two rides scheduled this past weekend, BOTH for upper Catskill region. I passed on the Saturday ride through the Cannonsville Reservoir...HATED to, just too much to do to give up both days. 21 bike club members showed up for that ride. <BR> <BR> Instead I chose the challenge of the Pepacton Reservoir ride...a 50 mile loop through some mighty challenging hills. Mr. No-Walk managed to climb 'em all on his bike! :-) For some reason all that climbing must've been too intimidating for... Mon, 18 Aug 2014 22:53:46 EST Cloud Chaser! http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5747845 A sizeable thunderstorm swept through our area earlier in the morning, however a check of the radar showed that the rain was OVER! Woo hoo! Out on our ride we go! <BR> <BR> I added some miles by starting in Center Village and met up with a couple of bike club members in Windsor. It was still a bit misty with clouds and a few drops of rain here & there. But I chased the clouds away! <BR> <BR> <link>www.youtube.com/watch?v=v71o5D0xlNk </link> <BR> <BR> On our way south out of Windsor we ... Sun, 27 Jul 2014 23:24:38 EST Great Ride and Great Memories http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5742461 Today's ride paled in many ways to the wonderful ride back in October 2011, but there were enough parallels to bring back the memories and yet to enjoy the people with whom I was riding today. <BR> <BR> Here is the route for today's ride: <BR> <BR> <link>ridewithgps.com/trips/3034307 </link> <BR> <BR> 30-some miles, fairly flat, easy-peasy...but a great ride for me to pump it up and feed my need for speed and satisfy that cravin' for pavin' and yearnin' for burnin'! :-) <BR> <BR> HERE... Sun, 20 Jul 2014 01:18:43 EST Michigan: The Rest of Vacation & Some Archeology... http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5741800 This was a most challenging week of re-entry after vacation, hence a delay in posting the "rest of the story"...! <BR> <BR> I was truly blessed with some of the BEST weather during my time in Michigan, especially on the important days of our reunion and our party for my father's 80th birthday. <BR> <BR> Here is a picture of my father standing WAY way up on the new "overlook" recently built in New Buffalo which takes one out into the nature preserves. We were down on the lower trail looking ... Fri, 18 Jul 2014 22:58:57 EST Rag In The Bag: Michigan Travels! http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5736218 So in line with the shedding of the "bubble" I've been enjoying tossing a rag in the bag (pannier), hopping on my bike and reconnecting with new friends, old friends and family out Michigan way. <BR> <BR> After spending the night with a very close friend with whom we shared our MSW years at Michigan State University I got on the bike for old times sake to tool around campus as I used to do way back in 1976-80 (the Magic Johnson-Gregory Kelser years!). Hardly recognized parts of the area in E... Thu, 10 Jul 2014 18:19:25 EST Bubble No More! http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5723650 Today I decided I will not live in a bubble any longer and Eliquis (my anti-coagulant) was NOT going to keep me off the bike! A friendly nudge from 4-A-HEALTHY-BMI pointed me in the direction of this blog: <BR> <BR> <link>afibrunner.wordpress.com/2013/05/28/<BR>what-activities-are-safe-while-on-anti<BR>coagulants/ </link> <BR> <BR> While I know there are bike club members on anti-coagulants who ride and it's been in the back of my mind if the anti-coagulant was going to be long term tha... Sun, 22 Jun 2014 21:12:55 EST To My SparkFamily: I Just Wanna Say... http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5721711 <link>www.youtube.com/watch?v=mCDWMqWZbqQ </link> <BR> <BR> I <BR> <BR> Am <BR> <BR> BACK! <BR> <BR> My night opened up: totally free to head to the fitness center and see what I could cook up...and had an AWESOME workout! <BR> <BR> Although my music didn't really grab me during my full set of upper body strength training...2 sets of 12 apiece 'round all the weight gizmos, once I moved on to the spin bike? I was sizzlin'! <BR> <BR> The music finally took me by the collar and MOVED ... Thu, 19 Jun 2014 22:47:13 EST 1st Day of Experiment: Definite Improvement! http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5720977 Thank you to everyone for your wonderful support, suggestions and for being "with me" through my struggles! <BR> <BR> I skipped my Ramipril last night and experienced a noticeable uptick in my energy today. Not running any races, but there was more focus, energy and ability to be more truly "with" others. My elliptical workout reflected progress as well. Not that it really ever suffered that badly. In 30 mins. I typically run around 425 calories supposedly burned...not that I believe the num... Wed, 18 Jun 2014 22:31:11 EST Deep In The Valley of "meh" http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5720193 <img src="http://photos-ak.sparkpeople.com/nw/1/6/l1631765527.jpg"> <BR> <BR> Apologies for dropping out of the Spark-iverse as I have, but this has been a month of torture. I haven't had anything of value to say to anyone. Although I have much that I could rant endlessly about, I haven't had the energy to do that NOR could I see the benefit in passing along all of my bottom-feeding, soul-rending, deeply dark and cruel bashing of myself and the whole wide world. <BR> <BR> I have been very... Tue, 17 Jun 2014 22:08:41 EST Vehicle Inspection http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5697941 Both of our household cars are up for their annual vehicle inspection this month, which is about to become even more crazy/busy than it already has. So I decided to do a two-fer today and bring them both into my auto shop. <BR> <BR> One person, two vehicles...hmmm...okay, I've been slacking a bit lately on my workouts due to bicycling events attended in which I couldn't participate...twice this week. So I knew I needed to kick it back into gear today. <BR> <BR> Dropped off vehicle #1 and si... Sun, 18 May 2014 22:12:59 EST Jog Along the RiverWalk With Me! http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5691123 DOGLADY13 lived in the Binghamton area for a number of years and asked about some parts of the downtown area through which I've been jogging a lot recently. <BR> <BR> So I thought for a change I would take along my phone and take some pics of my route which takes me from my fitness center (Riverwalk Athletic Center, part of the DoubleTree Hotel) along the RiverWalk trail downtown Binghamton, over the Washington St. Bridge which is closed to traffic and only for pedestrian / cycling use and ... Fri, 9 May 2014 08:50:34 EST Be the SPARK You Want to See in the World! http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5689624 Riffing off a couple of fellow super blogsters, HILLSLUG98239 & ONEKIDSMOM: <BR> <BR> Success is not an accident <BR> <link>www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_jo<BR>urnal_individual.asp?blog_id=5684308 </link> <BR> <BR> How did you get started? <BR> <link>www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_jo<BR>urnal_individual.asp?blog_id=5688298 </link> <BR> <BR> HILLSLUG98239 struggles with others being jealous of her accomplishments and wonders why intelligent people can't put 2 + 2 together and j... Wed, 7 May 2014 09:32:03 EST Lycra Busting http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5688662 Oh, but there WAS new territory forged after all! <BR> <BR> I forgot to mention another change: way back when I started wearing bicycle shorts I decided: Nobody is ever going to see me out in public wearing such lycra / spandex! <BR> <BR> So I covered up my bike shorts with regular shorts. <BR> <BR> Since I discovered a few weeks ago that I actually managed to fit into the spandex-lycra-style bike club jersey I've toyed with the thought: hmm...perhaps I could "get away" with wearing my bi... Tue, 6 May 2014 07:09:44 EST Update http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5688469 Hmm...been busy lately with mostly good stuff happening, but for whatever reason it hasn't really come together as blogs usually do for me. So I'm just gonna rattle on with what's been happening. I think it's related to not having pushed the envelop in any significant way lately...no overly-inspiring thoughts or experiences, perhaps? <BR> <BR> Getting ready for my Binghamton Bridge Run 5K yesterday has been enjoyable...going outside and jogging for an hour at a time several times a week ove... Mon, 5 May 2014 22:39:02 EST Easter Hike http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5676932 After enjoying a breakfast out together as a family my DS joined me on a hike through one of our local parks soaking up all the sunshine and nature. Despite this park (Chenango Valley State Park) being practically in my back yard, we don't visit it often enough. My son did the honor of snapping some lovely pics which I'll share. Not sure how the panoramic shots will appear, but will give it a whirl! <BR> <BR> First is the area around golf course (a panoramic shot): <BR> <BR> <img src="http... Mon, 21 Apr 2014 09:46:14 EST What Goes Around... http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5676047 A few years ago my neighbor was duly impressed by my health efforts and getting into bicycling. So he reclaimed what was once an interest of his in the past (cycling) and got back on the bike himself. Soon he was biking with his son and other friends and relatives. His forte is mountain biking while mine is road cycling, so our paths, despite being neighbors, haven't crossed too often. <BR> <BR> Over recent years I've noticed many folks coming around to his place talking bikes and bikes com... Sat, 19 Apr 2014 23:51:44 EST 3 Days, 3 Hour-Long Jogs http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5672643 These past few days have been such an amazing spring preview, with temps in the 70s, that I simply could not resist putting myself right out there and jogging to soak it all up before the hammer falls tonight dropping to 18 chilly degrees with snow yet one more time. <BR> <BR> But: Holy quads afire I've got a good aching soreness that comes from working different muscles. Each year I re-discover how differently one works muscles with running as opposed to my usual spin bikes and elliptical w... Tue, 15 Apr 2014 08:56:04 EST When I Grow Up... http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5671813 I had such a wonderful jog yesterday in my favorite local park, Dorchester: <BR> <BR> <img src="http://photos-ak.sparkpeople.com/nw/7/9/l796574783.jpg"> <BR> <BR> I maintained my jogging gait as I went up the ridge to jog along the top of the dam...the same angle as this photo was taken. This ridge is such a GLORIOUS place to be in the part as one is right on top of the dam which creates the lake you see on the one side and on the other side you see the valley of Whitney Point and its scho... Mon, 14 Apr 2014 08:45:31 EST Salty Upper Lip: Prepping for 5K http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5670801 We've been graced by stupendous spring-into-summer-like weather this weekend and EVERYBODY'S heading outdoors! Today I began in earnest to prepare for the Binghamton Bridge Run, my only 5K of the year...good timing since I am still taking the anti-coagulant and am staying off the bike. <BR> <BR> So I focus on jogging...or fast-walking...lol! <BR> <BR> One voice told myself before heading out to our Vestal Rail - Trail to jog 4 miles: first of the season, take it easy, it's okay if you need... Sat, 12 Apr 2014 22:56:31 EST Safety Not Guaranteed http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5659982 I just have to give this movie one of the most heart-felt shout outs and and jump up & downs I've had over a movie in a long, long time. I knew way back when it came out that this was going to be a special movie. Check out the reviews below and see the trailer on YouTube: <BR> <BR> <link>www.rottentomatoes.com/m/safety_not_<BR>guaranteed/ </link> <BR> <BR> <link>www.imdb.com/title/tt1862079/ </link> <BR> <BR> <link>www.youtube.com/watch?v=73jSnAs7mq8 </link> <BR> <BR> FINALLY o... Sun, 30 Mar 2014 11:31:46 EST The OTHER NSA: Pile With A Smile! http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5659664 I've enjoyed getting back into the swing of things at Spinning Class this week along with some nice walk / jogs outside now that the temps are rounding the bend again and warming up some. <BR> <BR> Rather than naming these Non-Scale Victories as is often spoken about 'round these parts, I prefer to consider them Non-Scale Awarenesses (NSA)...not necessarily a whoop for joy but a smile of appreciation and a valuing the progress that I am making. Doubly so in that I appreciate the progress no... Sat, 29 Mar 2014 23:25:33 EST Working the Spark: The Pay-Offs Keep Rolling In! http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5654959 Today started off with a bang when I hit my new low weight of the year...woo hoo! Only 17 pounds away from my goal of 200! <BR> <BR> I had already had a plan to clear the closet of all my old clothes that are really too big. I don't want ANYTHING around to make it easy to backslide! <BR> <BR> However little did I know what treasures I would find among the SMALLER clothes that I had forgotten I had outgrown! VERY nice stuff! And I'm re-kindling the fun and self-satisfaction of being able to ... Sun, 23 Mar 2014 23:14:02 EST Quiet Leadership http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5648643 Another member inspired my blog for today when she pondered the fact that others considered her to be a "leader" but she wasn't so comfortable thinking of herself in that way...it didn't seem to "fit" her perception of herself. Here were the thoughts I shared, plus a little "bonus"... <BR> <BR> "Leader" is one of those tricky words isn't it? Often we can think of a leader as a General Patton taking the bull by the horns and barking out orders. <BR> <BR> But I prefer to think of a leader as ... Sat, 15 Mar 2014 19:41:35 EST Another First! Thanks & Shout Out to Our SparkFamily! http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5647559 Thank you everyone for all of your TREMENDOUS support which pushed one of my recent blogs ("A Change in Perspective: Preparing for Maintenance") toward achieving my very first Popular Blog Post award! <BR> <BR> It's not only a super day for this reason alone, but have notched down in another couple of ways that have me psyched as well: 1) I've crossed another big number by dropping below 220, which would be 100 pounds below where I started when joining SparkPeople in 2007 and 2) This led me ... Fri, 14 Mar 2014 08:55:03 EST First Day of Spring! http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5645724 Who cares what the calendar sez? Who cares that we're gonna get DUMPED on with another half foot of snow tomorrow? <BR> <BR> Today was truly the first day of spring! 50+ degrees and sunshine / blue skies EVERYWHERE! A nice, teensy NSV was to decide instead of pulling my long-sleeved t-shirt down over my jeans I was going to tuck it in! I have forever pulled my shirts down, figuring somehow it hid the fat better? Silly me...! But hey, as I trim I figure I have less and less reason to be self-... Tue, 11 Mar 2014 22:02:22 EST Breathing In & Breathing Out... http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5643134 Sending a big shout out of appreciation and thanks to everyone for your support on my last blog! Took you all "with" me on my latest medical journey which went very smoothly. <BR> <BR> The ablation was completed Thursday, bumping my HR back up to 55-60, however due to my heart still dropping beats it was going to be pacemaker time after all. I was relieved as I figured I'd only likely have to return within the near future to have it done. One twofer special coming right up! <BR> <BR> So Fri... Sat, 8 Mar 2014 20:17:15 EST Heart School http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5639336 I've had this absolutely weird, humorous preoccupation with this old "Far Side" cartoon ever since I knew another intervention was going to be necessary to correct my heart rhythm: <BR> <BR> <link>jerrytravis.blogspot.com/2011/11/tut<BR>ored.html </link> <BR> <BR> So here's how I've twisted that chuckle to "fit" my circumstances: "Hey Biff, I'm going off to the hospital to get my heart "schooled" so it beats right!" :-) <BR> <BR> I've been WAY pleased with my weight loss efforts lately.... Tue, 4 Mar 2014 09:26:49 EST A Change in Perspective: Preparing for Maintenance http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5636066 One of our members of "At Goal and Maintaining" SparkTeam recently expressed worries about relapse and "obsessing" over food. This got me thinking about some of the changes in my thinking since 2014 began. <BR> <BR> I once upon a teensy sliver of time reached my goal of 200 only a few years ago in 2010 and am clawing my way back to goal again (SHEESH but the pounds are getting stubborn, but I'm MORE stubborn!) but with a different attitude this time around that I think will pull me through t... Fri, 28 Feb 2014 12:04:29 EST Ablating We Will Go! http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5633427 Well my "electrician" or more formally, electrophysiologist got right down to business and scheduled me for my cardiac ablation next week! I'm pleased to get going on this and am hopeful that I'll be putting this behind me so that I can hit the roads on my bike this year just like any other! <BR> <BR> The way that I understand the procedure is that he will be zapping (with a radiofrequency catheter up through the groin) the electrical current in my heart to see if it restores a proper rhythm... Tue, 25 Feb 2014 12:15:58 EST Nordic Swing Dance! http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5631069 Sometimes a workout is just that: a WORK out! It just doesn't come easy and it just doesn't crank up those endorphins the way one would like. <BR> <BR> This morning was one of those mornings. The old upper body ST moves just weren't happening without a lotta OOF and there were no new increments of weight added...just the same-old, same-old. So after almost an hour of that I move on to Spinning Class for an hour. But again it just wasn't happening. I was going through the motions but none of... Sat, 22 Feb 2014 18:53:53 EST Finally: Down To New Weight Loss Low for 2014! http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5629025 Beginning in January I've been on a zero-sugar, zero-grain approach and for the heckuvit I've been trying what some refer to as an intermittent fasting where I only eat from noon until 8-9 pm and leave myself food-free for around 16 hours. Keeping calories around 1400-1600 a day. <BR> <BR> During the first few weeks BAM! I dropped 20 pounds. I was thrilled, but I knew it wouldn't last...but but but...I've been almost totally flat for Feb. following the same approach that dropped all those i... Thu, 20 Feb 2014 09:23:34 EST Valentine's Day: The Heart...It's Complicated! http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5623794 Here I was ready to march off and either zap ye olde heart or slap a pacemaker in and be good to go! <BR> <BR> Sadly no such simple solutions await... <BR> <BR> My EKG confirmed a return of the atrial flutter, however with some worsening features that make a solution tricky and outside the range of my current cardiologist's area of expertise. She is more of a "plumbing" sorta gal. Me? I need an electrician. My right atrium is not filling completely, nor is it emptying completely. The other... Fri, 14 Feb 2014 09:43:49 EST What Is It About February? http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5620209 It was a year ago when I had my atrial flutter and electrical heart block with low resting heart rates around 20-30 or so. Got my cardioversion zap and was finally taken off coumadin and cleared for no restrictions in my activities this past June. My resting heart rate was consistently in the 60s. <BR> <BR> I was warned, however, that this electrical gremlin might return and haunt my heart yet again. I got lax. Haven't been checking my heart rate. Last week after my fitness center workouts I... Mon, 10 Feb 2014 09:45:24 EST Holding Firm / Addiction http://www.sparkpeople.com/mypage_public_journal_individual.asp?blog_id=5617331 The pounds they have grown stubborn, but I'm MORE stubborn and sticking with my zero sugar / zero grain approach. Also sticking with my 16 hour daily fasts and limiting my eating to the hours between noon & 8-9 pm. Calories varying between 1400-1600 mostly with occasional dips to 1200. <BR> <BR> I was impressed by Russell Brand's editorial comment about Phillip Seymour Hoffman and the lesson of addiction that he brings front and center to the world: <BR> <BR> "Like any drug addict I know ex... Thu, 6 Feb 2014 22:05:45 EST