Saturday, November 30, 2013

Well, I took 3 days off.  I took off from exercise because of some serious ailments.  Looking back, I think I'd been exercising every day for 3 weeks straight.  But I figured since it was pretty light cardio it was OK.  Anyway I had thriving gains in weird places in my knee and foot, but after two days of I realized the throbbing pain was gone.  Almost by accident I missed the gym on Friday, but fortunately, due largely to the fact that, with me still not working, exercise and health are taking top priority for me.  So I went back today and did 90 minutes while reading Sherlock Holmes mysteries.  30 walking, 30 doing light elliptical (though light, HR at over 140) and 30 of light walking.  I meant to take it easy today, so when I began to feel strange sparkles variously around my body in the second hour, which I have no idea why I was associating that with a lack of electrolytes, I started to feel guilty about overworking myself.  Would stomping on the treadmill for an hour, even fairly slowly, be good for knees and feet like I promised I'd be?  In otherwise, I go to the gym promising to take it easy, but once there I can't resist pushing a little.  At least i'm still to lazy to push a lot.

Despite an excess of pumpkin pie with sugar-free cool whip, wine, movie theatre popcorn and Raisinettes (I saw 2 movies, Dallas Buyers Club and Thor: the Dark World) I didn't gain significantly.  I think I was 274 on Wednesday and today I was 275.  That was before breakfast at home.  After breakfast, on the scale at the gym, I was 289.9!  Not much surprise that it's higher, but it hurts to see that.  I wonder if I'd have made it to 300 pounds at the doctors office scale.  Our Thanksgiving dinner was pretty OK - we really don't go overboard with casseroling our vegetables or aging to many sugars, creams, and though there was surely butter, it wasn't excessive.  That's just our way; mom prepared the whole meal.

And a turkey sandwich with dressing and cranberry and gravy would be good pretty soon.  :-)

Wednesday, November 27, 2013


ARGH!  Knee and foot pain are still there this morning.  If there are stress fractures, they want me not to exercise for weeks?  I'm trying to decide if I want to even do swimming but I just don't know whether swimming kicks would be a good idea.  CURSES!  I will stay home.  Tomorrow I may do yoga.  That's gonna hurt.  Maybe by the weekend I'll feel ready to return to the gym.  To be honest this strange foot pain that throbs in and out - I don't know WHEN it started showing up.  Could have been months ago I just don't know.  There seems to be a ligament that pops over an ankle bone of some sorts, so maybe it's just an aggravated ligament or something.

The good news is that weight has been lost again.  Actually seeing results, so keep it up, Hallie.
a pain in the knee again today and a pain on the top of my foot that's been there a while but i don't know when it started.  little throbs that come and go.  mini-fractures?  arthritis?  do I need to stay off my feet?  cuz that would suck.  NO MORE SETBACKS!  Gonna rule out diabetes because no numbness or tingling.  Gonna hope it's not MS!  No family history - I think.  Just watching Pres Bartlett struggling with first symptoms of MS and I'm not having that or any kind of clumsiness.

Tuesday, November 26, 2013


So I told you that I took Sunday off from exercising but I somehow failed to mention that my lower back was really sore yesterday.  As a result, I treated my workout at the gym more like a walking back massage than a push-myself workout because I didn't want to hurt myself.  Hurts again today, hopefully not as much.

When I got on the scale, readings ranged from 280-272 - like a huge range.  At first it registered at the high end, but then as I kept standing on it, it dropped.  It felt really good every time I saw it as less than 277, and really bad every time I saw it as 277 and above.  I was going to claim 275, but I think I'll claim 276 and be happy it seems to be working and not distress if it's slow.  Although I'm in a hurry to get some weight off my joints, I guess I'm still fine with losing weight.

Monday, November 25, 2013

scale reading

I sort of immediately dropped from, what, about 282 to 277 and then was deprived, the rest of the week, of any more weight loss joy on the scale.  Even had to endure a pop back up.  I found myself wondering whether Lose It had assigned me too many calories.  Even if I don't exercise, Lose It budgets me over 2100 calories per day to lose 1.5 pounds a week.  Once I realized that, it didn't seem that amazing that I was coming in so under calories every day!  Then I remembered that when I started, the point wasn't to count calories so much as to eat good foods that would balance me glycemically, and just sort of track to see how my eating habits registered on the calorie count log.  However, as soon as I started tracking, that became the obsession, to stay under budget.

I took yesterday off from exercise, just in case any of my leg muscles wanted a chance to repair.  So I'm back today.

I also figure I'll go back to work a little bit after Thanksgiving.  Maybe just warm myself back into it.  Today I have flare-up and that is even though there was no exercise yesterday.  I thought about a couple possible career changes but can't get started on them till next fall anyway.  It's time for a little income!

Saturday, November 23, 2013

Exercising every day...

I think exercising every day might be starting to hurt.  I will take a day off tomorrow.  Disappointing scale reading today as I was down to 277 all week to be swung back up to almost 280.  Yesterday I waited too late to ingest sufficient calories.  I had a large dinner of chicken, zucchini, marinara and brown rice - 1 cup of which came to 340 calories!  After that I thought I might have another row of my 72% chocolate bar, but I wound up having the rest, which was about 3/4 of the whole bar.  Add in a few other things and it felt like an oh-god-I-need-calories-now kind of binge, and at the end I was satisfied and still hundreds of calories under-budget at the ol' Lose It app where I'm tracking this stuff.  Anyway, it's all good, I'm not letting that one scale reading bother me, I just wish it hadn't happened.

Mom's coming back into town today.  I do wonder if I'll be able to keep this up while doing other things in life.  I need to start doing other things in life.  Keep hoping exercise will make me a more energetic person but :-/

Thursday, November 21, 2013

heart rate considerations - Level One too easy

I am finding my return to the gym to be easy.  Too easy, in fact.  The book says that the first Level One goal is to be able to do 45 minutes of exercise at a heart rate of 60-65% of your max heart rate.  65% for me is 117.  I just can't walk that slow!  I have been mostly maintaining something around 130-135 on the treadmill, trying not to work TOO hard too soon, and that's about 2.8-3.1 mph at a very slight incline of 1 or 2, but occasionally playing with higher or lower levels.  I feel a twinge in my left knee reminding me that there's no rush to get up to speed.  I like doing the 45 minute walks.  I watch an episode of Star Trek or House of Cards while I exercise.  There is plenty on Netflix to go through.

Level Two (from the old folks book) is to add strength training.

I'll see a personal trainer next week and get her guidance on where to go from here, adding weight lifting and maybe cardio goals - we'll see what she says.

Someone posted an article featuring the full nude photos of Julie Kozerski's post-weight-loss body and I looked at my old nude photos at about 220 and feel like maybe I'll be happy at 220 or 230 - depending on what my doctor says and whether my heart or knees and feet are okay with it.  I don't mind a little chubbiness.  Also she lost 160 pounds in a year.  I'm not going to do that.  Plus probably no man will ever see me naked again so it's only my aesthetics I have to worry about.

Monday, November 18, 2013

Exercise is good, not eating enough.

Well, things are going pretty well.  Of course I'm sure it helps a lot that I'm not working and nothing is pressing on my mind or my time.  Instead of hopping out of bed and rushing to the gym at 7 a.m., I finally make it there around noon, by which time I've already had breakfast.  Make it back home mid-afternoon.  And it's only my second day of counting on this lackadaisical-on-the-schedule-but-stringent-on-the-food-restrictions "plan" but I seem to be having a hard time trying to get anywhere near by calorie budget for the day.

Walked for 30 minutes at HR of around 130, which is 72% of my maximum heart rate - can you believe it? That used to be cooled down for me.  Then did 15 minutes of recumbent stationary biking, and kept the HR in the 120s but it was putting my quads and hamstrings to use in a new way and I was very excited to feel them get a little stronger, because I could tell from the puny resistance that they were weak.

That'll get better.  I figure another week of this "warm up" and then I'll get in a meeting with the trainer at the Y who can guide me on how to really commence.

For now I really need to eat something - which I guess means I have to cook it.  I have chicken and mushrooms so maybe some kind of chicken stroganoff, but low fat.  Would need yogurt and low-fat sour cream...  Hmm...

Kitty thinks she's gonna lie up here on my bed and get her dander all in my bedspread, when she vomited on my bed last night?  No no no, just you wait until I get you a towel to lie on.  A special kitty towel for her princessiness to lie on.

In the meantime, my work productivity is terrible.  I got too involved in Facebook today.  Now it's night again (7pm) and my only goal really is to get to sleep early enough to get up early tomorrow and get a good start on a short winter's day.  I am LOVING this rhythm and not wanting to give it up.  Both my parents are out of town and I have the house to myself and it's working great for me.

Sunday, November 17, 2013

Getting on track

Hi.  So it's been about 10 days.  I have been keeping up the exercise, but less in terms of the aerobics video, because I haven't been getting up early enough to get to the theatre before the people get there.  More in terms of walking.  A couple of things have inspired to walking - both books.  The first is an autobiography of David Mitchell.  I briefly developed an insane crush on David Mitchell when I started watching the TV show Peep Show.  (By the end of the last season, though, I think I was finding Robert Webb more appealing.)  Anyway, his book is a little bit about walking - how he's been walking and it's cured his back problem - so in the book, he's walking all around London.  It's his gimmick for his book, I guess.  Then I read a book over the past few days called Younger Next Year.  I was in the book shop and looking for some help devising a plan for how to get back in shape enough to get in shape.  Younger Next Year is probably written more for people older than me, 60's and up, maybe 50's, although the suggestion was actually mentioned in the book that the reader might be 40, which I am.  40 but feeling older, feeling undermined by my body after this crummy sedentary year.

So, the book is a lot about exercise.  By far the bulk of the book and the best parts are about exercise.  Of course, I've done a lot of exercise for exercise's sake in my adult years.  Weight training in college, gym rat (of sorts) in my twenties... sort of less of it in my thirties as I focused on work and got tired, but I was doing some pretty impressive hiking in my mid-to-late thirties.  Robust I have been, though obese.

So some of my favorite parts of the book were the parts that talked about the biochemistry of the decay of aging and how exercise worked against it.  I wouldn't say the whole book was great, but that part was valuable for me to read.  Plus there's a clear program to follow.  So I've been doing my 45 minutes of low cardio (walking) every day for a while now (I'm still not back to work, so this is the one thing I have to do, and it's pretty easy if I'm not working.)  A few days ago, I made the commitment and rejoined the gym.  Today I'm going to up my effort a little bit, do an interval or two at a higher rate.  Which I think will happen pretty easy because I want to work on the elliptical today and I think that will push my heart rate up automatically.

Today is the day I'm going to start tracking and also start eating better.  I have not been eating to lose weight or manage my body chemistry, which is to say, there have been lots of the bad carbs - candy and pasta and pizza...  And I haven't really liked it but when Mom makes spaghetti to try to use it up then you eat it, and I was the one who got in the mood for pizza and sweets...  I'm going to study up on some glycemic meals, try to have some go-to meals in my head and just do that naturally, just naturally eat whole grains, proteins, veggies, nuts, and fruits and olive oil and so on as I feel like it for a couple weeks, track the calories and see how that goes.  It's a process right now.  Both my parents are out of town so if that's a hindrance, I'm in complete control right now.

So I'm going to use a hard-copy journal and an app like Lose It or Sparkpeople to track also.

I'll let you know how it goes.

Thursday, November 7, 2013

Hiya.  I'm typing on my tablet at Bruegger's.  I hate typing a lot on my tablet so this will be as short add I can make it.

Regarding my knee issues I mentioned last time - it got better.  Rest, ice packs, ibuprofen.  I did all the ladder climbing for the last show myself right on schedule, and took care of my knees so that crippling level of pain has not come back, although from time to time I can still get little twinges that tell me I still have to be careful, and improve my legs.

The play opened last night.  I am in my "two weeks off for self-improvement" I mentioned last time.  Financially I'll-advised but I feel like it's necessary anyway.  The good news is that now, I CAN ENVISION returning to work.  Previously it just seemed beyond me.

At the moment I'm a morning-riser.  Daylight-savings helped with that.  Weirdly, I pass out between 11 and 1 and wake up with the light of day on my face around 7.  Sunday I got up on the chilly morning, meditated, planned my day, walked around the neighborhood for an hour.  Tuesday I got up in the morning and went to the theatre and did most of the Jane Fonda low-impact aerobics (skipping a few high-intensity minutes) and stretch - felt fantastic.  Meanwhile, pain, swelling, flare-up, and drainage from my backside has reduced to neat non-issue status.  It has done so before, tricking me into thinking I'm better and then coming back - a very soul-sucking, debilitating pattern.  But I have a good feeling this time...

Anyway today, this morning, I again woke up early and excited to get a good start on my day.  Excited to go to the theatre and do the exercise video again.  It has little bends and squats in the choreography that I figure will be good for building up my hamstrings and the muscles around my knees, plus a pleasing full range of motion.  So I went and did it for 23 minutes, until right before the cool-down, I got palpitations.  I've had flutings before, randomly and rarely, and been told that I have an arrhythmia that isn't worth getting disturbed about.  Still, this felt a little more like I could have a heart attack, so I'm going to read up on heart-attack symptoms, work out carefully, keep improving my health, and mention it to the doctor when I have my annual physical soon.

Meanwhile, just a note about how I read other people's stories about their post-surgical recuperation...  Well, I guess it's different for everyone.  One friend had a terrible accident and broke his clavicle a month or so ago but he's back on the bike!  Why does his bone heal faster than my soft-tissue??  Grr.  Other friends have had surgeries that have set them back a bit more.  One had an athletic injury that she's going in to physical therapy for.  Another just posted video of herself victoriously walking without a walker (she's a dancer) and she's been mentioning her problem all year - a year of recuperating and she can only now walk!!  So I guess I fall in the middle...

So, a slow start but a definite upward slant on my optimism of returning to normal!!  Yay!  I already know my next goal is to make a bunch of money to eat a chunk out of this debt and get my travel on!!