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The OTHER NSA: Pile With A Smile!

Saturday, March 29, 2014

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.

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 not only in my body, but in my awareness and the ability to give myself credit for what I've accomplished.

I'm riding LIGHTER! It used to be while riding I would lean forward more and put pressure on my arms to lighten my "load" and lessen the discomfort of the saddle. Now I find myself often sitting up straight during some of the sprints and pumping my arms as though I was jogging or slapping my legs in time to the music...a lightness not only in my saddle, but in my spirit too!

I have found "the bike"...you know, the one bike in the whole room that makes the most sense as YOUR bike? Back in the corner, next to the fan :-) but ALSO situated so that I always have a view of the outdoors as window space is at a premium and I like to be reminded of where I'd RATHER be cycling so that I can at least virtually "go there" during my spinning efforts. The other benefit is that I'm also next to the mirror that runs along the far wall of the class so that I can better acquaint myself with my body, my appearance and attempt to dispel the distortions of my self-perceptions one baby-step at a time. I've been mirror-averse all my life...ENOUGH!

Freeing my hands from the handlebars also allows them to rest on my thighs and I can appreciate the strength and firmness of my quads: yes, I know they'll take me wherever I choose to go on my bike! Although the critic in me grimaces over the top-down view of my skin flapping around my thighs as if I was about to take off like a flying squirrel, I look in the mirror and to my surprise that skin isn't visible. Hoping to become as appreciative of this skin as I am of my quads...!

One night while doing my own spinning routine another young fellow was doing the same thing. He started before me. When he finished up I gave him a thumbs up on his hour-long session and said "feels good! I love turning into a soaking wet pile with a smile!" He smiled and said "that's the goal, isn't it?" winked as he stepped out of the room.

Another discovery: I have a SPINE! While showering I noticed that I could feel the definition of my backbone...no poking or prodding required! :-)

In the locker room I overhear some young fellows talking about their weigh-ins, one remarking on his 219 pounds. He's shorter than me, more muscular, but certainly very appealing build. Hmm... Strength training. Missing that! So important! But I realize too that even when I WAS lifting weights 3x a week I wasn't paying too much attention to varying what I was doing other than bumping the weights up a smidgen here and there. Not sure if I can put enough time & energy into doing more than the same-old same old. But weights continue to be off-limits until May 7th...which brings me to my latest medical timeline!

Got my staples out this past Monday, healing is progressing nicely. My son, the neurosurgical Physician Assistant, duly put the fear of God in me regarding the importance of respecting the lifting, shoveling, pulling, pushing restrictions in the use of my left arm until the May 7th date: doing so could risk having the pacemaker dislodged in my chest and require re-installation! Okay I sez back to him: we're running out of wood pellets and I have a ton to move this weekend. You willing to do it for me? Great son that he is, of course he did! But I insisted he plop those 40# bags on my good right shoulder so I could hasten the loading / unloading and he could take the bag off my shoulder on the other end...lol!

The most IMPORTANT timeline of all, however, is when can the anti-coagulant be discontinued! In April I get a black box which wirelessly reads my pacemaker and sends data back to the doctor and manufacturer. I'm followed up with the Nurse Practitioner in mid-May. If all goes well and everything is running as it should she said it is likely the anti-coagulant can be finally discontinued then. Whew!

I am so PSYCHED about riding this year, lighter and spriter than ever...feeling pumped in spinning class...just winding up tighter and tighter ready to go go GO! I have acquired the final pieces of my self-supported touring gear. Even so part of me warns, cautions that I'd better have a plan B just in case...heaven forbid!

Already the riding calendar is marching on and the ride I planned to lead for my bike club will pre-date any D/C of anti-coagulant. And other cool rides are going to come & go. I wonder about having enough time in the saddle to be ready for the 500 Miles Across New York at the end of July:


And I don't want to miss riding with everyone at our annual Great Finger Lakes Bicycle Tour!


In the meantime I will occupy myself getting ready for the Binghamton Bridge Run and my one & only 5K of the year...which should be a wonderful celebration of being lighter also!


Hoping everyone out there is thoroughly enjoying the weekend!

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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    Some awesome goals coming up this year. Keep up the good work. So glad you are healing up well.

    1517 days ago
    Great news on all fronts!
    1517 days ago
    I always enjoy reading about your adventures in tremendous fitness, Don, even if they leave me needing to collapse into a chair like a sack o' potatoes emoticon It must be great fun to enjoy all these modalities in such a lovely part of the country, too, especially at this time of year! I'll think of you as I do my customary 60 crunches tomorrow AM. Have a terrific week!!
    1518 days ago
  • _LINDA
    emoticon emoticon
    Nothing like being on the road to recovery and getting to enjoy your favorite sport!
    Those events sound fabulous!! But oh my! 500 miles!! It would be those mountains that would concern me! Hope you have somewhere to get in hill work!
    Here is to rocking and rolling it!
    1518 days ago
    Glad you are healing well! And what a great son to help you with all that lifting!
    1519 days ago
    A blog bursting with all sorts of good news! Good to hear!!
    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon
    1519 days ago
    You blog is full of excitement and it's infectious. (smiling)
    1519 days ago
    1519 days ago
    Non-scale Awareness. What an awesome term for sure. I am going to adapt that if it's ok with you! Think it is a far better descriptive term!

    Glad you got your staples out and LISTENED to the restrictions. I am a nurse, so I can appreciate your son's feelings! Good for him! I love nursing and it's a career with endless career paths. He has certainly chosen a wonderful path!

    Good luck with the ST. And isn't it great to be riding lighter! Awesome.

    ¨`*•.¸ ♥ ¸.•*´¨☆¨`*•.¸ ♥ ¸.•*´¨♥¸.•*´¨☆(¸.•´¨`¸•

    ¸¸.•☆´.•*¨.♥ Happy Sunday . . . blessings¨`♥ *`*•.¸☆´¨`*
    (¸.•´`* .♥ (¸.•☆´.¸•¨`*♥•☆´¨
    R>"Health is the greatest gift, contentment the greatest wealth, faithfulness the best relationship." Buddha
    1519 days ago
  • KANOE10
    Your non scale awareness is so exciting. LIghter and Spriter is the way to go. You are noticing all of the wonderful effects of training and eating healthy. I think you are going to have a great biking season.

    I am glad your son is there to help you through your healing and that you are following the doctor's advice on no lifting until May. What a sweet son to help you.

    Have a wonderful day! You are doing great.
    1519 days ago
    I'm beginning to develop a sour grapes attitude as you continue to soar (NOT). You just keep going higher and higher on so many levels. It's amazing. And your writing skill in articulating the journey adds another layer of understanding. Keep FLYING, my friend!
    1519 days ago
    I agree with WATERMELLEN that your joie de vivre shines through. And it's a wise man who follows doctors' orders about restrictions. Don't want any of that re-insertion stuff!

    Have a joyous week, and hold on to those dreams. You may miss a few rides, but you will savor every minute of the journey... and like the rest... LOVE the term Non Scale Awareness! I might just "borrow" it in future blogs.
    1519 days ago
    What a lovely blog, thoroughly enjoyed it. Your joie de vivre is so appealing and engaging . . . with your "non scale awarenesses" , pleasure in the present moment and anticipation of good times to come. So glad you're listening to your son AND permitting him to help you, which is a terrific gift itself.
    1519 days ago
    Wow, Don, 500miles!!! Whoop! Whoop!

    I'm not certain where this new vegan program is taking me, but perhaps my desire of walking another 1/2 marathon is in the works? That is MY 500 mile bike ride.

    Well done and you sound in great, yet balanced spirits. You sailed through the pacemaker surgery and are adhering to the after surgery instructions. Well done!

    Now, eat your fruits and veggies!
    1519 days ago
  • 123ELAINE456
    Awesome Blog!!! Very Inspiring. You are moving right along. That is Fantastic. Be careful that you don't do things that you aren't suppose do as your son says. You have a Wonderful Son too. Enjoy doing things that you can do. God Blessings Always. have a Wonderful Week. Take Care.
    1519 days ago

    Comment edited on: 3/30/2014 1:58:41 AM
    Non-Scale Awarenesses! Excellent term! Great that your son is a good one; not only helping with hauling, but aware of the post-surgicals!!

    The FANY ride seems pretty intense for only a few months away, but I'd not be surprised to hear you're heading to the Falls and planning to ride to the Springs. You are doing GREAT. Am amazed at your quick recovery... like that long walk you took so soon after the pacemaker was 'installed'. As I'd read your blog abou it, this voice inside my head said: "he did WHAT?!" Amazing. You're an inspiration, my friend!
    1519 days ago
    great strides - fantastic!
    1519 days ago
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