FANGFACEKITTY's SparkPeople Blog FANGFACEKITTY's Blog on SparkPeople, home of free diet plans and a healthy living community Run the Year 2017 Who signed up for the Run the Year 2017 challenge (external, not here in SP)? If you are not familiar with it, it is a challenge to walk/jog/run 2017 miles during the year (solo or in teams). <BR> <BR> There are also monthly themed mini-challenges. The one for September is Fuel Your Fitness, focusing on healthy meals and snacks. And the recipes highlighted come from Spark People! <BR> <BR> My team hit 2017 miles months ago; with 4 of us it did not really feel like a challenge. I got off to... Wed, 30 Aug 2017 23:04:48 EST Sugar beast I've been back in the US since 7/1. One of the things I really miss about France/Europe is the food - fewer chemicals, no GMOs, more flavorful...and less sugar. I have never gone out of my way to eliminate sugar from my diet because I don't add a lot of it to my cooking and mostly avoid the obvious culprits like cakes/candies/ice cream/etc. <BR> <BR> But since I've been back in the USA I can taste it in literally everything. Sugar in bread...check. Sugar in supposedly health garden vegetable... Tue, 29 Aug 2017 10:59:29 EST Is it Spring yet? I am so ready for Spring/Summer. Winter is my least favorite season.I can accept the need for it, but after about the first week of January I am done with it. Now if only Mother Nature would get on my schedule. <BR> <BR> I don't even have it too bad. Normal winter temps here are 35-45 on average, and no snow. Much better than in SE Michigan where I am from. I just don't like the cold, which is anything less than 75 degrees <em>334</em> <BR> <BR> My preferences have changed over the year... Sun, 19 Feb 2017 15:05:15 EST Fermenting I tried kimchi for the first time back in 2015 on a trip to Shanghai and really liked it. After returning to France I went several times to a Korean restaurant in Paris with a Korean colleague. He said the restaurant was pretty authentic and he should know lol. I continued going once a month or so even after he returned to Korea last year, but it is a 1 hour+ drive each way, plus parking & toll roads, so I cannot indulge my love for Korean food as often as I would like. <BR> <BR> So...I deci... Sun, 12 Feb 2017 13:25:25 EST Breaking up is hard to do When I started running I researched and purchased a Garmin Forerunner 610 in blue. I loved my Garmin, in part because it didn't look like a large blocky obviously sport watch made for men's bigger wrists. Plus, it was blue. I like blue. <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> We had a good relationship. I thought we would be together for life. <BR> <BR> Until I accidentally dropped it in the washing machine without re... Sun, 5 Feb 2017 14:53:37 EST Gadgets galore! I love gadgets. On today's run I had my patellar braces on, my Fitbit, my Garmin and two phones - my US phone in case my kids called and my French phone to use RunKeeper because sometimes Garmin is a little loose with reporting distances. I could have run Endomondo on the US phone but I figured that was overkill. I also had my iPod because running without music is physically impossible. And my wireless earphones that I saved for last year because I absolutely hated dealing with three foot cor... Sun, 29 Jan 2017 14:53:44 EST Going the extra mile Or, in my case, the extra half mile. Because getting lost is my superpower <em>531</em> <em>198</em> <BR> <BR> Sunday is my "long run" day, even if there is still a lot of walking. Today was only my second one; my plan is to build up both the time I spend running first and then increase the distance. <BR> <BR> Last week I measured my planned Sunday route at about 5.75 miles. I run for 30 minutes, or 2.25 miles and the rest was 5 minutes walking / 5 minutes running. <BR> <BR> I plann... Sun, 22 Jan 2017 13:24:04 EST Garmin wants me to succeed I went for a run/walk this afternoon and wore my Garmin gps watch, and I also turned on the Runkeeper app. Apparently Garmin is invested in my success; it consistently reported an additional 1/4 to 1/3 mile the entire time I was out. I think I'm going to use the Runkeeper distance, it seems more accurate. I know that at my current fitness level I most certainly did NOT run my first half a mile in 3 minutes, as Garmin insists. <BR> <BR> I think I will be able to stick with my respawn his time... Sun, 15 Jan 2017 13:16:16 EST Oh, that it comes down to this I'm making a blog entry for the sole purpose of getting that last 1 spark point to get the next level trophy. I am ashamed of myself <em>246</em> <BR> <BR> But I get the next trophy! <BR> <BR> Since I'm here already I'll also make a quick update. Or maybe not so quick. <BR> <BR> Been phoning it in for way too long. Late 2013 my weight started hanging out just over my maintenance range. Coincidentally that is also when I stopped tracking my monthly goals, stopped exercising consistently... Tue, 19 May 2015 16:24:20 EST Things that make me go GRRRRRRR!!!!! Someone rifling through my belongings and stealing from me at work. This is a professional office environment and we have a thief ? Possibly in my own department ? Can't blame this one on the cleaning crew since it happened during lunch and was very likely someone who knew I was given an envelope with $$ and saw where I put it. <BR> <BR> Having to lock my file cabinet now and carry the key everywhere with me because of the thief. Loss of trust sucks. <BR> <BR> Any message so-called inspirin... Sun, 15 Feb 2015 04:42:07 EST Dropping like flies Literally! <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> This is what I spent last weekend doing, swatting (no exaggeration) hundreds of flies. I wonder how many calories are burned using a fly swatter ? <BR> <BR> Fortunately the invasion seems to be over now, with only the windows left to be washed. Sun, 24 Aug 2014 06:48:05 EST Bliss in and scratching the mosquito bites <BR> <BR> Now I'm off to buy some citronella candles for the bedroom at night to prevent more of the same! <BR> <BR> Eta: cute internet random kitty scratching its chin picture removed b/c it was getting more sympathy than me, the actual victim of the unprovoked mosquito blitzkrieg <em>334</em> Sun, 10 Aug 2014 09:00:47 EST Perils I have a renter in my US house while I am in France. One of the dangers of renting one's house out is that you just don't know who you'll end up with and what they will do to your home. <BR> <BR> I've been lucky. My first renter took care of the house and everything looked good from the road driving by. Flowers planted along the front porch, the lawn was mown, garage looked tidy. She has now moved out and has to do the walk-through this week. <BR> <BR> I stopped by the house Monday to pick... Tue, 29 Jul 2014 20:01:31 EST Here comes the rain again And just call me "The Rainmaker" <em>30</em> <BR> <BR> We didn't actually "go to court" yesterday morning, it was more negotiation between our lawyers. Somehow the PEH found a decent one this time, instead of the incompetent he had for the divorce. I "won" 2 of the 3 main points, which is really just a reinforcement of the original custody order. I went for full legal custody as well but we will have to have an actual hearing for that in a few months. In any case, no more Ms. Nice Lady..... Tue, 29 Jul 2014 06:35:45 EST Where's my umbrella? As in the literal it has rained more days than not for the last month, including a cold and gloomy 10 day straight stretch. <BR> <BR> As in the idiomatic "when it rains, it pours"...when everything seems to go wrong all at once. <BR> <BR> As in the "WTF?" category..."I got the cash, I'm bringing the rain" which was the actual text message I received from the PEH back in March when I refused to cancel DDs cell phone. I live in France, she is in the is how I stay in touch with her, es... Fri, 25 Jul 2014 00:19:39 EST Dinner <img src=""> <BR> <BR> I actually had a nice dinner of sushi so this guy was safe...this time <em>334</em> <BR> <BR> I have been seeing these huge snails all over the place lately, including one who thought my cilantro plant was his dinner. Sun, 6 Jul 2014 16:14:54 EST Conspiracy Today I had planned to go for a bike ride after breakfast, mow the lawn (and after 3 weeks it is sorely needed!), finish weeding the "garden", maybe trim some more hedges and go for a walk in the evening. <BR> <BR> Mother Nature decided is nice and rainy. Although I did get the walk done, to the post office & back, in the misty drizzle between showers. <BR> <BR> Time for plan B...napping <em>102</em> Sat, 5 Jul 2014 06:00:12 EST "One Eyed Purple People Eater" DD's new ride : <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> Since she had to wait all year for Phase 1 Driver's Training to be held at her high school, because she had no one to take her to the other locations, and since she has no other transportation to get to/from work (assuming she can now find a job), last week before I left MI I got her a moped & she passed her test to get a moped license. <BR> <BR> Now she can cruise (30 mph only but it beats wa... Fri, 4 Jul 2014 15:43:57 EST Milestone Not mine, although in a sense I guess it is for me too. <BR> <BR> My firstborn is DS, 18 years old. He moved into his first place last night, to live on his own. <BR> <em>104</em> <em>283</em> <em>436</em> <BR> <BR> I always enjoyed my children's milestones as a celebration of their independence. To me these are not times to be sad (but I have never really been a traditional or conventional parent either). <BR> <BR> Although this particular milestone is not as happy as it should ... Fri, 4 Jul 2014 02:04:00 EST Still alive Since it has been (too) many months since my last blog this is just a quick note to say I am still alive and here. Been spending too much time working, not working out, and dealing with the crazy from the psycho-ex. Which, unfortunately, isn't over yet. Gained some weight and have been about 10 pounds over maintenance range for the last (too many) months, but at least I know how and why and am taking steps to correct it again. Unfortunately I am a stress eater...but it is summer, we have beau... Thu, 3 Jul 2014 02:02:12 EST Hubris Pride goes before the fall. Fortunately the fall today was only metaphorical and not physical. I am somewhere in France for a training weekend for The Raid. I thought I was in OK shape. The reality is very different. <BR> <BR> I finally found something I loathe more than pushups. <BR> <BR> I despise mountains. They are evil and should all be razed to the ground. <BR> <BR> More info later when I am back home; it is too hard to blog on my phone. <BR> <BR> Of course, tomorrow we do ro... Sat, 22 Feb 2014 13:46:15 EST No progress yet Went for another trail ride on Saturday morning. If anything I am regressing. The hills were harder, ever though they were the same ones, and my asthma attacked. I haven't had a problem in years, but this hill nonsense is HARD. <BR> <BR> 9.41 miles in 108 minutes; last week I did the same distance / elevation in 84 minutes. <BR> <BR> I am not in shape to handle the hills, especially for a new sport. And I know a part of the problem is the bike. It is heavy compared to the others' mountain b... Sun, 16 Feb 2014 14:49:14 EST Pathetically Amazing Tuesday at lunch I went for a lunchtime run with others from work. The Activities Committee is trying to make this a regular event, a running club. We started off OK, but after 5 minutes or so I was lagging behind. By 10 minutes I was really behind. My relay partner from the race in October stayed back with me, the rest of the group disappeared from sight. I had to walk several times. All in all it took 68 minutes to go just over 5.5 miles. <BR> <BR> Pathetic, considering what I used to be a... Sun, 9 Feb 2014 09:55:43 EST Those who are about to die... My daughter came for a visit right after Christmas, for 10 days. She is now speaking to me again, lol. There was a 6 week period where she wasn't because I was the cause of all the problems in her life...hard to make friends at the new school, problems with her dad, etc. She is 15 and therefore not amenable to reason. <BR> <BR> In any case I am mostly forgiven now. We spent a few days doing nothing a"home" here in France and on New Year's Eve flew to Rome to start our vacation. <BR> <BR> Ye... Sat, 18 Jan 2014 05:07:44 EST The Raid Over the last month or so several people at work have asked me if I was on the company team. <BR> <BR> Company team? What company team? <BR> <BR> "Didn't you get the e-mail"? they ask. <BR> <BR> No e-mail. <BR> <BR> "Oh, well, I know you're a runner, you should really do it. They always need more women to participate. I'll send you the e-mail". <BR> <BR> OK...but nobody ever actually sent me the e-mail after these conversations. <BR> <BR> Until last week. Now I kind of wish... Wed, 25 Dec 2013 07:19:54 EST Soapbox Rant <img src=""> <BR> <BR> Yesterday's discovery about the discontinuation of my Garmin watch and its replacement by ugly colors including the gag inducing hated pink was just the start. I was also looking at some running gear sites at medal holders and discovered a way to store/display racing bibs too. <BR> <BR> Except..."Run like a Girl" ? More pink ? Girls Run ? More pink and powder blue ? Don't even get me started on women's shoe sizes... Mon, 9 Dec 2013 07:28:05 EST Why, Garmin, why? Went for my inaugural run in my new Asics this afternoon. I bought them back in June when I was in Michingan because running shoes are a lot cheaper in the US than in France. I normally wear a Brooks, or a Mizuno, stability shoe, extra wide in "men's"...really it is almost considered a boy's size but it works for me. <BR> <BR> But unfortunately none of the stores had either brand available in my I agreed to hive the Asics a shot. It was only recently that I've put enough miles on ... Sun, 8 Dec 2013 16:13:00 EST Not answering my phone anymore At 9:30 my time this morning - so about 3:30 am in Michigan - I received a text from my son : "am going to hospital, think I have MRSA" <BR> <BR> <em>40</em> <BR> <BR> So I call him up immediately because MRSA is dangerous. <BR> <BR> He has a "pimple" like spot on his leg that has grown and is now quite painful and is obviously not a pimple. In his internet research for a diagnosis he came across MRSA, it seemed to fit and so he decided that is what it must be. <BR> <BR> <em>198</em... Thu, 5 Dec 2013 12:42:49 EST August & September Goal Results IN PROGRESS GOALS <BR> 1) Maintain my weight at +10 / -14 pounds <BR> <em>48</em> <BR> Met, although mostly by my diet and not through exercise <BR> <BR> 2) Maintain my budget and pay off 1 debts (revised) <BR> <em>48</em> <BR> On track <BR> <BR> 4) Resume saxophone playing and look for a band to join <BR> <em>48</em> <BR> Met <BR> <BR> 5) Travel <BR> <em>48</em> <BR> **5Q1 – Met - Normandy, Paris, Compiegne & Oise area in January with my son <BR> **5Q2 – Met – Amsterdam, N... Tue, 15 Oct 2013 12:19:04 EST Course des 2 Chateaux 17km race Wow, it's been almost 2 months since my last blog! I have a lot of catching up to do...later. <BR> <BR> A few months ago I signed up for this race through the activities committee at work. 17km is about 10.5 miles, at the time I expected it to be no big deal. After all, I've done 8 or so HMs and I was starting to train again. <BR> <BR> Then August happened...I just stopped running. No real physical reason, it just didn't appeal to me so I found excuses. Then came September and I knew I need... Sun, 29 Sep 2013 14:10:07 EST July Goal Results IN PROGRESS GOALS <BR> 1) Maintain my weight at +10 / -14 pounds <BR> <em>48</em> <BR> Met <BR> <BR> 2) Maintain my budget and pay off 1 debts (revised) <BR> <em>358</em> <BR> On track <BR> <BR> 3) Finish my 1st Marathon <BR> <em>38</em> <BR> After various knee injury recovery periods I was back to building a regular running schedule again…and then was sidetracked by travel and illness. So back to the beginning for August…thinking that a marathon is not going to happen this year... Fri, 2 Aug 2013 10:58:42 EST I am hot! Literally. <BR> <BR> Fever of 104, killer headache. Just took my last aspirin so will have to force myself out to go to the pharmacy this morning, no excuses. Pharmacy will be closed tomorrow, along with the grocery store. And I need a fan since I can no longer keep my window open - Turtle my scaredy cat decided to be brave and go out on the steep pitched roof last night. <BR> <BR> Not how I planned to spend my weekend. <BR> <BR> Update : fever is now reduced thanks to the aspirin and some... Sat, 20 Jul 2013 01:03:13 EST June Goal Results June 2013 Goal Results: <BR> <BR> IN PROGRESS GOALS <BR> 1) Maintain my weight at +10 / -14 pounds <BR> <em>192</em> Met, back into the middle of my maintenance range <BR> <BR> 2) Maintain my budget and pay off 1 debts (revised) <BR> <em>48</em> On track <BR> <BR> 3) Finish my 1st Marathon <BR> Cautiously restarting my training again, will see how July goes before signing up for a race <BR> <BR> 4) Resume saxophone playing and look for a band to join <BR> <em>335</em> Met <... Tue, 9 Jul 2013 08:27:49 EST Ease on down the road Back in March I started having problems with my knees. I have "Jumper's Knee", or also known as "Runner's Knee", where the knee cap doesn't track quite right. Mine is probably from karate; it predates my running. I can go for long stretches of time without any issues at all and then something will set it off. <BR> <BR> In March I think it was because my shoes had reached the end of their running life before I was expecting it. I still finished 2 HMs in March but it was getting worse so I... Sun, 7 Jul 2013 11:17:27 EST Travel (Mis)Adventures This is going to be very long so if you want the Cliff Notes version : <BR> <BR> Spent 2 weeks in the US for vacation in June, was really busy, accomplished a lot, now am back to work in France and waiting for the Kittehs to exact revenge for being left alone in the basement. <BR> <BR> But then you will miss all of the vital life lessons & words of wisdom if you stop reading. <em>20</em> <BR> <BR> My (mis)adventures started the day after getting my daughter on the plane to move back t... Thu, 4 Jul 2013 15:07:37 EST Revenge of the Kittehs During my 2 week vacation I locked the Kittehs in the basement. I had bought toddler swimming pools and filled them with water and litter and 40 pounds of food – far more than they would need – and gave them blankies and pillows to sleep on…but somehow I knew they would not appreciate my efforts and would want revenge. I had been living in mortal fear since I returned on the 20th but then l I realized just how insidious their plan was. <BR> <BR> They are trying to kill me with guilt. They... Wed, 26 Jun 2013 05:35:32 EST Empty I am officially on vacation for 3 weeks. I went to bed after midnight...and was awake at 6 am. WTF?! I do not even get up that early on work days! Not a particularly auspicious start to my time off; I hope that this morning nonsense improves quickly. Vacations should be about sleeping in. <BR> <BR> Anyway, I was actually "up" at 4 am because Stupid Dog thinks if he goes outside that early I will be sleepwalking and give him breakfast without realizing it...and then a second breakfast onc... Tue, 4 Jun 2013 02:38:43 EST May Goal Results IN PROGRESS GOALS <BR> 1) Maintain my weight at +10 / -14 pounds <BR> <em>48</em> <BR> Met; back in the middle of the range <BR> <BR> 2) Maintain my budget and pay off 1 debts (revised) <BR> <em>48</em> <BR> On track <BR> <BR> 3) Finish my 1st Marathon <BR> <em>38</em> <BR> Squats hurt my knee again mid-month and I can still feel it when I go up/down stairs and when I run. I don’t know if a marathon is going to happen this year. <BR> <BR> 4) Resume saxophone playing and look f... Sun, 2 Jun 2013 03:58:29 EST Stupid Dog Gone Wild Sorry, no expose video of Stupid Dog's misdeeds while on Spring Break. Instead what you get today is a photo journey of one of our walks. Stupid Dog has put in an impressive 12.5 miles over the past 3 days...I think he is about ready to hide when he sees the harness now. Is it wrong to be smug that I can outlast my dog? <em>246</em> <BR> <BR> Stupid Dog in the forest <img src=""> <BR> <BR> Path along the river, saw 2 duck familie... Tue, 28 May 2013 06:27:34 EST Always & Never <img src=""> <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> <img src=""> <BR> <BR> Today is the day we remember our fallen, those who gave everything for our country, for our freedoms that we so often take for granted. Always remember their sacrifice, never forg... Mon, 27 May 2013 00:57:00 EST I am being mocked By an inanimate object no less. <BR> <BR> My bike. Or rather my daughter's bike. It laughs at me, it taunts me. <BR> <BR> Twice this week I have gone for a bike ride, approximately 3.5 miles each time. Both times my time was barely faster than my running speed. <BR> <BR> Now, in my defense, I have 2 major strikes against me before I even get on the bike. I live amongst hills. And did I mention the hills? <BR> <BR> The first time I took my daughter's "regular" bike, her 10 speed. Unfor... Sun, 26 May 2013 13:16:30 EST OMG! A Bug! My cat Gandalf : <BR> <BR> <img src=""> Tue, 21 May 2013 13:39:21 EST The Ugly Truth about water Day 9 of my 8 glasses a day streak. Regardless of the consequences I have to get the news spread and maybe I can save someone from these horrible fate : <BR> <BR> <BR> <BR> <BR> <BR> <img src=""> EQUALS <img src=""> <BR> EVERY. FIVE. MINUTES! <BR> <BR> I can now understand the crazy astronaut lady who wore adult diapers to drive across the country. <BR> <BR> Don't let this h... Mon, 20 May 2013 06:24:40 EST Now What? I went to the farmers' market again today and wandered around while my daughter went looking in the shops for sandals and accessories. <BR> <BR> I scored a nice fat eggplant, over 2 pounds of the fattest carrots I've ever seen, a carton of beautiful oyster mushrooms and some brown button 'shrooms to go with it, some sort of possibly Middle Eastern seafood mix (sold by the guy with the cart full of tzadiki and hummus and other awesome goodness)...and a large bunch of very pretty white asparag... Sat, 18 May 2013 15:04:06 EST Bionic Me I wish. <BR> <BR> When I was a kid, in grade school, we took a road trip out to SoCal. We actually criss-crossed the country and got to go to see Mt. Rushmore and the Black Hills in the north down to the Painted Desert, Grand Canyon and Petrified Forest in the south. We drove through Las Vegas, up, down and around San Francisco, and even made it to Tijuana in Mexico. I still remember the paper roses we bought from a street vendor there, and my Dad bought this large carved wooden boat that... Wed, 15 May 2013 01:45:14 EST I Found My Thrill ...on blueberry hill... <BR> <BR> Actually my thrill was bingeing....on music. <BR> <BR> Thanks to a recent blog by BOILHAM I went on a music buying spree recently, starting with Fats Domino and Chuck Berry and branching off from there. <BR> <BR> New treasures for my iPod include: <BR> <BR> Blueberry Hill...Fats Domino <BR> Wooly Bully...Sam the Sham & The Pharaohs <BR> Da Doo Ron Ron...Sha Na Na <BR> Rama Lama Ding Dong...Sha Na Na <BR> Witch Doctor...Sha Na Na <BR> Walk Like an Egyptian... Thu, 9 May 2013 05:41:50 EST Busted Today & tomorrow are holidays in France, so no work. I had fully intended to start my speed training again since it is Wednesday and today is the first day of Track Time...a running coach offers training at a local track back home once per week. Coach Ken is the one who got me up to speed (pun intended) for my 2 mile run. Although I am here across the ocean I still get the e-mailed workout plans and was going to go to the local track this afternoon. <BR> <BR> The weather had other plans. ... Wed, 8 May 2013 15:25:33 EST Blue Salamanders, White Canvas <img src=""> <BR> Stupid Dog, aka Munchie Bear, after his walk today. <BR> <BR> Back in December I was taking Stupid Dog on daily 1 mile walks. He was constantly pulling and lunging and other dogs, trucks, etc. Once he somehow managed to slip the leash and actually jumped out into the road and missed being flattened by a cement truck by mere inches. And don't even ask about his reaction to motorcycles. <BR> <BR> In short he was not a ... Mon, 6 May 2013 16:14:12 EST Mexican Teddy Bear Chainsaw Massacre at Farmers' Market There was a bit of fuss in the SP community this week about an article someone published elsewhere on the web titled Women Should Not Run, are something to that effect. I have not read the article but from others' comments it sounds as if the message - only doing the same cardio exercise, i.e.. running, without cross-training and strength training, is not a good idea for anyone - got lost in the in-your-face title, author's presentation and the fact he may have been selling something. Prese... Sun, 5 May 2013 11:27:50 EST April Goal Results IN PROGRESS GOALS <BR> 1) Maintain my weight at +10 / -14 pounds <BR> <em>48</em> <BR> <BR> 2) Maintain my budget and pay off 1 debts (revised) <BR> <em>48</em> <BR> <BR> 3) Finish my 1st Marathon <BR> Originally registered for the Paris Marathon on April 7 but after experiencing knee issues in the 2-3 weeks prior I backed out rather than risk more severe injury. I’m keeping this on the goal list for now since I still have 8 months left in the year and a marathon is certainly still... Thu, 2 May 2013 06:48:32 EST