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Catching Up: Health Update Part 2 -- The Jock Stuff

Monday, February 18, 2013

I'm moving over the rest of my older health posts today. I'll post something current tomorrow.

March 27th, 2012: Health Update Part 2 -- The Jock Stuff

The first time I tried an individualized morning exercise program was in college 25 years ago. In order to help me get up and get to the gym, I turned on Mississippi Public Radio and promptly discovered Morning Edition. That scuttled the exercising, but I've been a fan of the show ever since. These days I keep the radio and the exercise equipment in the same room. It works a lot better that way. :)

Anytime you're doing a solo fitness routine the first question is, "How do you measure your progress?" I'm fit enough that I can't tell any immediate benefit from exercising. My body type doesn't lose weight easily, if at all. There's no spasms from muscles that have never been asked to do "that" before which clear up in a few weeks.

I'm not yet lifting heavy enough weights to feel it the next day. I buy another set when I can, but that's usually monthly. So far the best indicator I have that I'm actually making progress is that I can do certain exercises, like pushups, and certain dance moves, like "walks" and "layers", for twice as long without straining as I could six months ago.

As far as the cardio goes, I doubt my ability to reliably self-monitor. This month's fitness purchase is a heart rate monitor watch which should arrive tomorrow. I needed a new watch anyway.

Following the recommendation in Coopersmith's book, I've folded the yoga into the daily warm-ups and cool downs to make more room for cardio and strength training. This means longer sessions. Unfortunately the day isn't getting longer to compensate. I'm just doing the most basic yoga poses. I might well be ready to try some more advanced ones, but I'd like to have a trained spotter around the first few times. Living in the middle of nowhere stinks sometimes.

January 17th: Fitness Update

I first wrote about my body issues and fitness a year ago. Since then the tendons in my knee have largely healed. In Fall 2011 a steep flight of stairs left me in pain for weeks. Last summer I could hike (with frequent stops) for two days before it would give out. Now I can do an hour or so of moderate exercise a day with it only twinging. Of course that leg is week and I'm still hauling around my pregnancy weight, but I can work on those things now.

We got Wii Fit Plus for Christmas. Wow, feedback, what a novel concept! Apparently I'm not nearly as out of shape as I thought I was, although I haven't tried most of the exercises that involve standing on one leg. The yoga and strength training segments are good, but the cardio's pretty light. I got Gold's Gym Dance Workout, and the Latin Dance and "cardio boxing" handle the cardio segments well. I'd prefer bellydancing, but I can see where that would be difficult for the Wiimote to pick up. Since the goal of bellydancing is to isolate movements to one part of the body, you'd have to adorn yourself with motion sensors like a Christmas tree.

Brighteyes likes the Latin Dance segments. Sunshine prefers Shaun White Snowboarding. Owl likes to beat me at the 2-player race from Wii Fit Plus (their algorithm gives everyone the same stride length, so it's how fast you can pitter-patter that counts).

The weight loss chatter hasn't been nearly as triggery as I feared, although apparently I accidentally turned off a lot of that feature in WFP. It's nice to see that program makers have learned to turn it down. They weren't telling us anything we didn't know already.

January 28th: **blink**

I started using Wii Fit Plus a month ago, and Gold's Gym Dance two weeks ago. As of one month later I've lost 6.7 pounds.

I'm sure it's a mistake, although I don't see how it could be. Or maybe it's simply the super-easy part and now things are going to get incredibly difficult.


Well, dang. I don't have much of a problem with pessimism and poor self image, now do I? /sarcasm
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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    Thanks for the encouragement! I have a post coming up about exercising with my children and another about the Surrealism of counting calories.
    1887 days ago
  • RIVEY09
    Haha, I have really enjoyed reading through your blogs. I myself recently started blogging and have found it to be a great source of personal accountability. A couple of years ago, I experienced similar results with the WFP. It was my roommate's at the time, but I lost about 3 pounds the first week back from Christmas Break. Granted, I also stopped using it when classes started back, but it was effective for the time that I used it.

    I'm honestly really impressed with how well you're doing avoiding your triggers. I would be lying to say that I understand where you're coming from, but I do know that you have children who are counting on you to continuing pursuing a healthy lifestyle. You are a model for them, and you get to be the one who breaks the cycle that so many other abuse victims fall into. Emotionally, counting calories was always my shut off to health too, but I have recently become so fascinated in the chemistry, math, and nutrition aspects of food that the actual tracking process is less of a burden.

    I hope this week goes well for you, and that you continue to see results. Even if the numbers don't seem right, I hope your body physically feels the difference :) I'll be cheering you on!
    1888 days ago
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