80/144 days

It’s been awhile since I wrote about this and figured it was time to record. I have 80 days or 11 weeks left before the 5K or 10K shows up.

I can probably take refuge yet again behind the busy time and space in my head and life for my absence here and on the progress (albeit slow) of my humble efforts to get fit. If you think am being self-deprecating and joking on the efforts, I assure you, I am not.

I have never imagined in my wildest dreams that I would one day be sitting here counting calories, watching my diet, and working my butt off with the pains that drown me, mentally and emotionally draining, and how in a very detached second person way, am actually going through the motions. The demands on the body and  mind as a mother, wife and everything else, the stress that comes with dreams unfulfilled and all the time keeping that monkey on your back happy. It’s challenging. Yet, Here I am and there is no choice but to go forward.

Eyes are placed in the front to look ahead and we pull our socks up and off we go.

So, here we go:

Exercise:

  • I have managed to go thrice/week to the gym through the last two weeks.
  • Yoga has been maintained and am very proud to see my body do the movements in a more smoother familiar fashion, that I didnt think I was capable of. Shows you that when you keep at something, the body and mind do not have a choice but to get better at it.
  • I am enjoying the aqua classes immensely, and have figured out that instructors can vary in their intenstity and demands on you, and that’s a good thing.
  • I’ve also started taking the dog out for walks and longer walks, and managing a little close to 2 miles before the shins act up. Still no way closer to the pi-miler and the 5K, but I’ll get there. Remember: I could barely walk around the block before my knees gave in when I started? Yeah.
  • The stationary bike has been great. I changed my target from time to kicking in 250 calories. It helps. Some days I manage 4 miles, some it is 6 miles, and the time is anywhere between 20 minutes to 30 minutes. I like it. Except that am not biking on the Memorial Day weekend, so apart from strengthening my heart a bit, I will need to start walking. Which is not hard considering there are occasional signs of spring before they get scared back into the ground coz of the finicky weather.
  • I feel limber. Feeling limber is awesome. Not having to brace when you have to get off the couch or off the floor.
  • I also have started some quad strengthening exercises that I do while sitting down tapping away at this laptop :)

Diet:

  • I started Weight Watchers. It’ s a good program to get your eating habits in order. I was never a binge-eater or a heavy eater, so tracking every bit I eat doesn’t really swallow points, but I do want to stick with it for 3 months and see where it takes me. I don’t prowl the forums or do heavy duty reading, and I have not religiously written since a few days in my log on what I eat everyday, but it has helped. I have lost 4 pounds since 3 weeks. Not much, but it’s a positive sign and it shows. Maybe just paying someone else so you can be conscious of what you eat is not as idiotic as it sounds. :-)
  • Disclaimer: I am not obese (acc to CMS), nor do I look obese. I just am not what I was 2 years ago. Understandable considering it all. Yet, I know that I carry a lot of un-necessary weight around me and am determined to lose it for the greater good of the family. So, am garnering all the possible help I can get. 
  • I’ve embraced quinoa and brown rice. It’s been a detached adoption. I no longer feel the craving for the few foods I once did. I eat coz I have to keep the hunger down. The shift in view has helped. It would be another matter if I absolutely hated what am eating, but I don’t. I make food palatable enough for my head and body to accept it. I need to find more spicy snacks though.. just eating fruits and carrots are not going to take me far.
  • It took some effort to get to this place. Removing distractions (including un-following some foodie bloggers, coz food is their passion and it is my call to take care of me) is one step closer to staying on target.

Thought for the week:

Faith: I believe I can do it. I believe that one day I will be able to walk pain-free. I believe I will one day, without hesitation, be asked by my children to accompany them to Disney or a college visit and I will do so without having to worry about the miles I will need to cover. For now, it is one step at a time.

One gym day at a time and one stretch at a time.

Nike

Verdict:

The rhythm has set in, and as much as I am scrambling for time to do all that I *want* to do versus all that I *have* to squeeze in to, this is a good thing. There are immense challenges as I attack the pantry and the kitchen every day, what with the various dietary conditions and whims in the family, but if this is what it takes to get where I (we) have to get, then this is what it will take.

I must register for the Pi-Miler, but now that the course details are out, I plan on doing the course this week and the next and see how much I clock it.

For now, it is one step at a time.

104/144 days

I have 104 days left. That is 3 months and some 14 days. Sounds like a lot of time when you count it that way. Then again, we live from weekend to weekend and see how the boxes in between fill with all the details that become bullet points in our life’s resumes. Okay, that line was slightly bizarre even by my own quirky style, but shall blame the twilight and continue on with my blinders.

So, it has not been a good week. Gym-wise so-so, but emotionally and muscle-wise not good. Not at all.

A dear friend of the family (she is like the elder sister that I never had) suffered a heart attack out of the blue on Thursday morning. One minute he dropped his son at school and was banging the keys on his laptop to get something for the other son and next minute he has excruciating pain, and when the brave grounded wife drove him alone to the emergency, his EKG came abnormal and underwent an emergency Cath procedure to remove a block and place a stent in him. She had called me (for support) and to drive her up to the other hospital and that started a three day exercise in perseverance, prayer and faith.

Over the weekend, after relief had set in, more thoughts seeped in. Our lives are fragile. Every single act that we strive to put together day after day, our dreams, relationships and work are at the whim of the unseen hand.

It is a thankful few days in honor of the timing, alert actions and the medical profession that we take for granted. For small mercies, and how this little nudge in our normal busy lives can rattle us as people, as spectators and as a community. It also makes us want to continue to be healthy, to change little ways of doing things so we can live better and longer. Ultimately isn’t that what motivates us eager humans?

Exercise:

  • I did 20 minute on the treadmill and it was depressing again. My shins hurt tremendously. I am not sure why despite the stretching
  • Monday, Tuesday was alright. Sauna, elliptical and then I added in machine weights for the legs. It sucked that at one point I could press70-80 pounds and now 50 was a stretch. It depressed me slightly.
  • No yoga class, but I mnaged some stretches at home
  • Thursday was when the call came, so it’s been zilch since then.
  • Yesterday I had a whole body massage and it was heavenly. I love my masseuse. She is an amazingly strong African american who can work the kinks (..and lord knows I get one too many) It is the one indulgence that I have not felt guilty of on a monthly.

Diet:

  • Not bad at all. Ive been using more whole products in my cooking, having at least one fruit a day and keeping the milk and the multivitamins up.
  • Between my masseuse and my yoga instructor, I can very well become one of those natural, holistic people scrutinizing the unpronounceable ingredients on bottles, and going all healthy. There is some value, but I do foresee it in my not so far future.

Thought for the week:

this is life

 

It is long and wordy. But I like to look at this occasionally just so we can remind ourselves of what Life is and what it most definitely is not. We tend to over analyse and scrutinize our life a little more skewed than we should, to live well and simply and stress free.

But I do know that life is simple and life is short.

Verdict:

Am off to the gym now before a week of driving and knots lay in store for me. This isn’t yoru average 10K post, but it all ties in with goals and motivations and why we do what we do.
I may not have done much for my body, but I know my soul has felt good, sober and fortunate. For that I am thankful.
Happy Valentine’s folks. It isn’t a day of commercialization if you choose not to see it that way. It’s a day dedicated to the loved ones in your life. Forget the cheese, just enjoy the chocolate, the wine and some warm hugs.

 

113/144 days

Less said about this week, the better. Yes, that bad.

Exercise:

  • Zilch, except for Yoga and a heck of a lot of driving.
  • I had a birthday squeezed in, where I spent all evening on the road scuttling along hi-ways carrying baggage and persons around.
  • It took its toll. I was beginning to feel stiff by Friday.
  • Saturday was disastrous with me flying off the ground, landing on my bad knee buckled under me. It appropriately ballooned with time and rest despite ice, so there went the weekend.
  • This is Monday 6th, and am still sore in the leg and have an intense stiff painful back.

Diet:

  • It’s been okay. I did eat a fair amount of cake though :-)

Thought for the week:

Sometimes, it’s okay to stop and smell the roses and eat cake. In our rush to push ourselves we forget that we need to be kind. We are one of a kind and we are special. We deserve to slow down and live the moment.

 

Verdict:

Tomorrow is a brand new day and beginning. I miss the sauna and the gym.

 

120/144 days

I have 120 days or 3 months and 29 days left for the big May 28th run.

So am back at the gym, and I must say am liking it, despite running around in circles for a parking spot at a 24 hour open gym! It’s that crowded and extremely motivating I must say.

Tht combined with the number of “older” Asians that pretty much make a living at the place. I mean, why not? You walk in, Hve clean lockers, you swim, sit in the steam room or spa, shower, have asmoothie at the bar, then get your nails done, go upstairs and bike for a while, attend a zumba class, stretch, swim and shower and grab a healthy sandwich and make it in time home for sleep. No?

Despite the tone, I meant it in all seriousness when I said it’s motivating. The determination and the perseverance. Got to learn it from them.

So here we go:

Exercise:

  • Monday -No gym, but I did walk the dog round the neighborhood.
  • Tuesday – Dry Sauna (they had it at 180 degrees, and I was oblivious till about 10 minutes when I started hyperventilating on what the heck was wrong with me!) Stretched well. I love this part. Helps my sore muscles elongate. Biked for 20 minutes on the Fat burn cycle. (am so engrossed in this book – The immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks – a must for all science freaks)
  • Yoga on Wednesdays continues to be awesome. I dragged in a friend and she loved it too! That was heartening!
  • Thursday – Dry sauna and fat burn cycle for 20 minutes.
  • Friday – Dry sauna. Tried this new Aqua Fitness class. I *loved* it. I personally think, regardless of joints, swimmer or not, every single one of you must go stand in 4 feet of water and spend an hour doing a combo of zumba-kick-boxing-step-aerobics-weights. I was probably the only one who wasn’t menopausal. Everyone there called me “honey” and “dear” and were sweet older ladies with lines. But, that doesn’t mean much when it came to how they exercised with gusto and laughter. The husband teased me of joining geriatrics, but honestly, since when did age matter. I’ve known 50 year olds with a disposition of a young adult and I *know* a few young adults who could be 40 and above in their head. The instructor was sweating doing the moves outside of the pool! Go figure.
  • Loved aqua fitness, and February will see me jump into the pool at least twice a week.
  • Usual chores over the weekend, no spa/gym/walk,nothing, except some mild stretches.

Diet:

  • Breakfast, milk and multivitamin.
  • Ate rice just thrice, so Yay?
  • Smoothies. Fruits. Blendtec.

Thought for the week:

I love to exercise, but I still have to laugh at it.  You go to the health club, you see all these people and they’re working out; they’re training, they’re getting in shape.  But nobody’s really getting in shape for anything.   In modern society, you really don’t have to be physically strong to do anything.  The only reason that you’re getting in shape is so you can get through the workout.  So we’re working out, so that we’ll be in shape, for when we have to do our exercises.  That’s comedy. — Jerry Seinfeld

 

Jokes aside:
What’s your excuse?

Verdict:

It’s been a good gym week. Am beginning to warm up to the gym and making a schedule. It is also a great place to people-watch, which helps me when am sketching imaginary characters for the book I probably will never publish. As they say, the journey is more interesting that the destination. Ive always believed in it, and this venture of mine is no different.

I now believe I can do the 5K most definitely. Not run but walk. I don’t think I can run and keep my knee healthy to live the next 30 years of my life stress-free. Not yet at least. I believe that I will be able to do the 5K in March for this PiMiler at my son’s school. It will give me the boost I need to do the final 10K on Memorial day weekend.

Maybe the next time I am sitting in line twiddling my thumbs to pick up the boy(s) I’ll go on ahead and walk the streets!