Tuesday, July 29, 2014

A View of My World

A few shots taken with my phone of the fields where I walk, around the perimeter, and my best buddy, Django, who greeted me after I'd finished my first mile. :)

Saw my GI doc yesterday and not only was my weight down five pounds since I saw Dr. Mistry ten days ago but my bp was perfect! Blood pressure 120/80....YAY!

Saturday, July 26, 2014

I get all sorts of "healthy" newsletters in my email box each day. Today, one of the announced that they could tell you how to make healthy chips and fries. Well, I love both so I jumped on that email. And then......I saw the recipe..... Parsnips!!! I hate parsnips and I mean really hate parsnips. There are one or two veggies that I'm not crazy about, like asparagus, but I can still eat them on occasion with enough camouflage but those Duck D. people don't own enough camo to disguise that nasty vegetable. Sorry to all of the parsnip lovers out there....I know there have to be one or two of you with odd taste buds..... but I think they taste like soap. I'd never tried them until lifestyle maven Martha Stewart recommended them saying that, "Roasted with other root vegetables, they are the perfect Autumn side dish." I generally love roasted root veggies but those darn parsnips ruined the entire dish. Never, never, never going to give them a second try....even if they are fried to a crisp and covered in sea salt!

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Yes, the ravages of time but I'm beginning to wonder if there isn't some truth in that last statement on this photo. Did I become who I thought I was all along? Do I look now the way I imagined myself years ago? I think I did and I do.
I also think it's time for a new vision of myself. Maybe this mental imaging thing can work in reverse. I know I will never be twenty again and I'll never have the tight, toned body that I had then....but didn't appreciate or even see. But I can begin to see myself as a fit, capable and successful woman and maybe, just maybe, I'll grow into that image as well. 

Speaking of Muffins.....

That won't work but this will.................
That won't work but this will............ Okay, weight still not coming down. In fact I'm up 4/10s of a pound from last week....although Monday is my new weigh-in day so I'll wait until then to see if I've lost any pounds. The good news is, I noticed a change in my body this morning. Something I've been worried about is that my skin might sag once I lose my puffy stomach. This morning, I noticed two things: my tummy is significantly flatter and that little pooch at the bottom that was bothering me...the muffin top.....was flattening out! I went straight to the mirror to confirm and yes, indeed, the little Buddha belly is disappearing! So, I measured again....last measuring was on Monday and I'd lost over six inches overall then........and joy of joy's I've lost an additional 2.5 inches in the tummy and waist. :))  since Monday. Happy days and a happy dance to burn a few more calories! Oh, an additional thing I've been doing is holding my tummy in whenever I think about it. I heard a trainer on TV say that this was more effective than sit ups so I'm all for that. Just tighten up those abs when you are walking, standing in line, cooking, any daily task....even sitting in front of the computer. It will help tone your middle and improve your posture!

Cut the Fat

For once, I'm not talking about my diet. No, this time I refer to revolving debt. There is a reason they call it that because it is constantly growing even if you haven't made a charge in years. I hate credit cards. Remember that old Tennessee Ernie Ford song, 16 tons? "St Peter, don't you call me 'cause I can't go, I owe my soul to the company store." That's kind of how I feel. Once they get their claws into you, you can't get away from them. If I ever get mine paid off, I vow to never use them again...... she says now. I got deeply in debt to two of them buying supplies for a new business venture which didn't pay off. Next time, I'll listen to my own instincts instead of every friend's advice and opinion. I would never have charged any of it if I hadn't thought, oh, I'll make enough in the next year to pay all of this off....didn't happen and now, five years later, thanks to interests rates raised to astronomical heights, I'm beginning to wonder if I'll ever pay it off. :( Oh, well. Live and learn or lesson learned too late. If any of you find yourself in the same situation, I can serve as a warning anyway. Go to the bank, get a loan, cut up the cards!
I have to keep reminding myself that changing my diet is an ongoing process. It's been more than a little discouraging when I stay under the recommended daily calorie and fat intake and still don't lose an ounce but I know that the best effect is feeling healthier and more energetic. Yesterday, I actually went over the calories suggested. That happened because I went to the grocery store hungry and I went in the afternoon. If I'd gone as planned in the morning, I could have picked up something both filling and healthy for lunch. Instead, I grabbed what I could for lunch and then grabbed a bag of baked green peas to ease my hunger after shopping. It didn't help that Thursday afternoon seems to be the shopping time for every rude person in East Tennessee because I eat more when I'm upset, angry or frustrated. I need to work on that or else take my frustration out on the rude instead of my body, lol. Anyway, I went over my suggested caloric intake by about 120 calories thanks to wolfing down the entire bag of crunchy peas on the way home. I know it could have been worse and there is absolutely nothing I can do about that now but promise to do better today...................now, I'm off to have my bakery muffin for breakfast. ;-) Seriously, it's cranberry-orange, my fave, and one muffin a month is not gonna kill me. 
My trekking poles arrived yesterday from Sierra Trading Post and I had my first walk with them last night. I know I had to look so strange and awkward trying to get some sort of rhythm while using them. At my age though, I'm learning to forgo the embarrassment and just let people wonder what on earth I'm doing. Using the poles is supposed to burn 40% more calories and I can believe it. They totally wore me out. The only problem, I was only able to do half of what I usually do! Guess I'm going to have to work myself back up to where I was. Oh well, just think of all the pounds I'll be burning off as I adjust to walking with these and then start burning up the trail again.

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Put on Your Dancin' Shoes....

Today's DHC challenge was to do a ballet move which wasn't a difficult one at all but thinking about it brought back a memory. In the present, my friends are wanting me to take Zuma classes with them. They assure me that they are no better dancers than I am but I really doubt that. When I was in college....back in the stone age, physical education classes were required. I don't know about other places but I think that requirement has been lifted in Tenn. I don't think that is a good idea. Despite my total lack of coordination and grace, I did enjoy and get so much out of every PE class I took. BUT the ballet class presented some obstacles, I did not expect. I've always wanted to dance like a prima ballerina. So, when the opportunity arose to take ballet, I jumped at it. I'm not built or have I ever been built to be a dancer even in my skinny young days. And I was in the class with someone who'd taken dance their entire life  and someone who had been in the American Ballet company. I felt like a frog amongst princesses. There were others in the class who did not fit in but they stayed in the background and remained silent. I once had a therapist tell me that I've always been an introvert pretending to be an extrovert. The problem with playing at being something you are not, you tend to over act. So, the background and silent were never states you would find me in. I was never secretary of a club, I was president. I was never the last to volunteer, I was the first. Getting less than an A in any class was not an option and I always had an opinion. I was the classic over achiever and I like to think I've changed but probably not as much as I'd like. The thing is, all of that pep and enthusiasm came out of my own insecurity. I had terrible stage fright and surprisingly, since I seemed to crave it, hated being the center of attention. But my longing for acceptance had me not on the back row at my ballet class like the rest of the people with two left feet but right there front and center. So, the school decided to redo the floors in the room the class was originally held in so they told us we could use the gym. The only problem with this was that at lunchtime, when the class took place, the gym turned into a gathering place. Both students and faculty would be there for pick up basketball games. They were concentrating on their game so I wasn't worried about them. The ones who did bother me were all the ones who brought their lunch into the bleachers so they could watch the games or just socialize with friends.The class starts and there I am right up front and sticking out like a sore thumb. The instructor demonstrates what she wants us to do and my mind froze, I started to panic, I seemed to suddenly have a stroke or amnesia because she made no sense to me what so ever and I couldn't remember the first move. So, we began. At first, I was able to keep up with what the others were doing and then it all just fell apart like an intricate stack of cards tumbling to the ground in slow motion. And in the midst of my clumsy flailing and embarrassment, I hear a loud and familiar laugh coming from the stands. Obviously everyone wasn't watching the basketball games. Later that afternoon, I ran into the owner of that bullhorn laugh in a hallway on my way to class. He runs to catch up with me and with a very serious expression he said that he just wanted to compliment me on my dancing ability. I tell him to please just hush and go on. I'm still stinging from my humiliation enough without him adding to it. Then he says something that made me stop in my tracks and literally laugh out loud even if it was at myself. He said, "No, I'm being honest here. You amazed me because you were obviously the only one in the class who knew what they were doing because EVERYONE else was going the wrong way." The embarrassment faded long ago but that still makes me chuckle every time I think about it. That experience though makes me a bit apprehensive about taking another dance class especially since that wasn't my first humiliation with public dance....but I won't even go into that because it does still sting a bit. But, I'm old enough now to say, "It's now or never!" about a lot of things and dance is one of them. So, next week, I plan to put on my dancing shoes....or at least my repurposed running shoes....and join my friends at Zuma. If I lose my place, I'll just let loose and do my own thing. That's the wisdom of age. :)

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Tonight's walk:

 I've got a blister on my toe....and I keep hearing the Dire Straits song ;).....maybe get a blister on your little finger, maybe get a blister on your thumb ....... For me it's the toe next to the littlest toe so I don't know how I'll fare tomorrow morning. The grass stayed wet all day today. I didn't make the three miles I intended because I had errands to run this afternoon and I was late getting started. Then Steve came home and I cut the walk short just shy of three miles by a smidgen. Actually, I was ready to quit. Between my sore feet and my back starting to twinge, I was really feeling that last quarter mile. You can look at the graph and see how I slowed down. But you can also see the times I was doing a 12 minute mile or better. Each day I'm improving and that's motivation to keep going. Now, I'm going to bed. Night all. Sweet dreams.

Me post workout this morning. I'm looking flushed and sweaty and covered with hay from dovetailing chores and workout but I do look happy. And I'm sans makeup, too! That is like a minor miracle in confidence. You know how many people have seen me without makeup between 15 and 58? Exactly two, my husband and my mom..... and now all of you! That's a major step forward in confidence....or an example of getting over oneself post 55, hahaha.

Since I walk and run cross country, I really need this tip. I have two pairs of shoes and both are soaked after walking in the wet grass following the rains of the past few days. So this is what I should have done as soon as I got in yesterday morning and maybe I wouldn't be putting on soggy shoes for this morning's walk. 
There's my problem...I've been doing it wrong!
Oh, one more note on the images below....those 15 and 16 minutes per mile pace put me in the top 25%!!!! Yay, me! :)

My three walks from yesterday, July 21,2014. Note that there was only a short break between the two later in the day. I was releasing the horses back into the pasture and took Sadie back to the house so that I didn't use up all of the gas in my truck keeping her under ac while I walked, lol. I had intended to walk in between hauling water to the horses. The 35 gallon tank takes about ten minutes to fill so I thought that would be a nice break between two mile sets. But Steve called to say he was coming home early so I cut it off after the first two miles and then decided that I could fit in at least one more mile before he got home. I timed it perfectly....okay, it was serendipity but it worked out well....because I was finished and gathering tomatoes out of the garden for dinner when he pulled into the drive. 

Progress Recorded!

Yipee te yiyo!!! The scale has not been my friend since I started changing my diet and adding exercise to my day. I felt as if my clothes were getting loser but that darn scale kept showing me gaining weight instead of losing no matter how little I ate or how intensely and long I worked out. So last week I took my measurements. I wasn't smiling when I finished. After the first measurement revealed that my thigh was the size my waist use to be....sigh, those were the days..... I considered forgetting about it but all my friends were telling me that this was the true measure, no pun intended, of my progress. So, with many winces and grimaces, I recorded each number. That was six days ago. The scale today actually showed me up a pound from this time last week but down two pounds from the weigh-ins in between. And then I decided to measure again and....................wait for it..................it's worth the wait........................okay, I'll tell you already! I've lost six inches in the last six days!!! Yay!!!! And the best part is, the loss is evenly distributed. So, I'm doing a happy dance and I'm encouraged to keep going despite the lack of success I'm having with that darn scale. :)