26 November 2013


Last week Tuesday was my Friday.  We were packing up and heading to Maryland to visit my in-laws.  We had a little detour to Sun Prairie where our friends Nate and Matt live.  They are kind dog liking kind of people, so they kindly took Conner for us. We ate at Buck and Honey's- a great Sun Prairie local establishment.  They had a lighter menu, so I didn't veer TOO hard off track.  I ordered the red wine flight.  It came in a special kind of cast iron carrier.   Unfortunately, it became tippy as you drank the wine out of it.  I should have taken it off of the carrier but didn't think that far. 

Matt asked me to get the salt and CHAOS ENSUED.  My carrier tipped over, breaking the third wine glass and spilling all over the table. I thought that was it, but nooope, it also went on the floor and quite a ways away.  Whoops.  I hope none landed on anyone.  That would make me feel wretched.  Then Deven dropped his entire piece of pizza on the floor.  He wanted to eat it anyway (gross) but it fell in the same place where the glass fell. So yeah. No.  Our server joked that we weren't allowed back.  That's probably not a terrible idea on his fault. Haha.

We sent Dev to school until noon on Wednesday.  Our trip didn't start until 2:30 and we can really accomplish a lot more without him, so we got ourselves around and even did a little shopping.  I went to Weight Watchers and got my head screwed on straight before our trip.  I tracked my points pretty carefully and headed to Maryland with not very many extra points- see also Buck and Honey's.  I decided to make an allowance for myself to use my activity points for the weeks affected by this trip.

This is especially helpful as we were both celebrating Raj's birthday and Thanksgiving the following day.    So here I am, home with 0 remaining extra points.  If I need extra food on actual Thanksgiving, it will have to come from my activity.  I'm right out for going over those points, too.  I've been working very hard and I want to continue the downward trend through Thanksgiving.

I had a lot of wins in Maryland, actually.  I went for 2 longish runs, a long walk, did my crunches and planks.  I came home, stood on the scale and was only up about a pound.  That gain has gone and now I am pretty much holding steady from when I left.

All in all, not too bad. Not too bad at all.

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12 November 2013

Visiting Family

On Friday, I headed to Weight Watchers before work (Woohoo! I lost 2.4 and got my 5%) and went out for breakfast with Dev.  Looking at this picture, you can see how many tries it takes to get a picture of him where he looks legitimately happy.

  I dropped him off at school and headed into work.  I had a half day because we were going to Iowa after Raj got off work and I wanted to get us ready.  Once I got home, I did my Planksgiving, my challenge workout and took the dog for a walk.   I didn't have a ton of time to walk, but I did hit this trail.
I'm lucky enough to live in a neighborhood that has loads of trails and nearly all of them are as lovely as this shot.  If you look closely, you can see that there are a couple of apples on the ground near where I took this picture.  I wish you could smell the area.  It smells like an orchard even though there's just the one apple tree.

I need to get a picture of Conner on a walk sometime.  He smiles the whole time.  In a few weeks, Conner will turn 3.  I am here to tell you that the older he gets, the more pleasant it is to have him as a pet.  Now, you can sometimes pet him without him assuming that you want to play.  He's still busy, probably always will be, but he becomes more and more a faithful companion with each passing year.

It was too dark for the drive to Iowa for me to get much knitting done, but I was able to finish Deven's mittens while we were in Iowa.  I snapped this shot of me knitting in the car.  I'd just started the thumbs.

Once you get to the thumbs, you just have a few minutes of knitting left.  Less than an hour later, I snapped this shot of Deven wearing the finished product.
Dev couldn't be bothered to look at the camera or smile properly.  He was far too busy watching a DVD in the car. 

So, we got home and I got started on the laundry.  Dev had gotten his sneakers FILTHY at school, so those needed to be washed and dried before Monday.  We ran out, got some groceries and collapsed in a heap on the couch.

We've almost got our lives back together.  Today is the last day of the first week of the Holiday Hustle. I owe 10 minutes each for strength and cardio.  Obviously this won't be a problem at all.  I'll do my requirements and finish up the 10 minutes by running stairs.  My strength- I will do the daily challenge and finish up with crunches and push ups.

I'm off to scour Ravelry.  I need to find the perfect mittens to make for Dev's teacher and for a volunteer that is working with Deven.  We feel so lucky that Dev's school is working so hard to keep him challenged.  Dev reads above grade level-so they did an assessment and are utilizing a retired teacher to work with him at his level.  He reads books that are a little challenging for him and after she has him write a few sentences about what he's read.  It's easy enough to look at a kid and say 'he already reads, so phonics will be a good review.' I'm so pleased that his school didn't do that.

Anyway, I'm grateful for Dev's wonderful kindergarten teacher and his volunteer, so I really want to make some special mittens.

Be well, everyone!

05 November 2013


Thanksgiving season is here.  We don't usually travel for Thanksgiving because 1) airfare is ridiculous and 2) I don't want to :).  We've got a plan for a nice, solitary Thanksgiving around here.

We are lucky enough to have invitations to several Thanksgiving meals, but I feel like Thanksgiving should be a family event, so I am going to keep it to my family of three.  We might have a friend come by as she's at loose ends, but if I am the one doing the cooking, I have a lot more control of the food on the table, healthfulness of the choices, calories I consume.

I'm thinking we will do a small turkey roast that comes built in with cranberry stuffing.  That way 1) I am not buying a separate cranberry dish and 2) we won't have a ton of leftovers.  For a veg, I think I will make a nice harvest salad with dried cranberries, roasted almonds, lovely veg.  And mashed potatoes, BECAUSE I SAID SO. 

I'll be making a pumpkin pie without modifications because I can splurge on one thing on Thanksgiving and that will be it.  No one will be overstuffed and uncomfortable.

I'm also starting the day with a 5K.  I'm not sure if I will be running or walking. I am going to listen to my body and do what feels right.  Right now, I'm having pain in the hamstrings, low back and calf, plus feet as always, so running seems like a really silly idea.  But that's several days away and I could end up being a ball of fire on Turkey Day.

Activity v. 2.0 will come when my friends pick me up for a night of Christmas shopping.  We are going to brave Black Friday and probably overconsume on the good old caffeine.  It sounds like we will be out most of the night and into the morning.  Raj has to work day after Thanksgiving, so he'll be taking Dev with him to work and I will be picking him up when we are done.  Should be fun.

I'm nervous about getting in so many workout minutes, but I know I can do it.  Yesterday I set a goal to do 50 push ups on my toes by the end of 2014.  This means that a good portion of my strength training for the year will be dedicated to push ups and things to move me towards that goal.  As always, my legs and core need a lot of work, so I know I can get where I need to be. 

I will probably set up a tabata style workout for myself to get the cardio in.  Plus maybe get Raj to mitt for me a bit for more boxing time. 

Either way, little by little, reaching my goals and making healthy plans.

Be well, everyone.

04 November 2013

Goals for the Work Week

So, here I am without a challenge (until Wednesday,) but I am not without goals...  Here's what I want to accomplish this week.  I'll check back in on Friday and let you know how I did.

1) Make a point to get up every single hour.  I'm going to set a reminder to this end.  I'd like to make myself a cup of tea or something that will require me to walk around for a few minutes.

2) Make sure I move at least 40 minutes per day, preferably one hour per day.

3) Keep up with the 30 Day Yoga and Planksgiving challenges. 

4) Do some strength training every day.  I've got a 50s challenge in my mind.  Something like on Monday, Wednesday and Friday I do 50 Crunches, 50 bicycles, 50 reverse crunches and on Tuesday and Thursday I do 50 butt tap squats and 50 yoga block lunges and 50 push ups (as many as possible on my toes.)

5) Track my food.  I KNOW for a fact I do better if I have to put things down on paper.

6) Finish my mittens.  I have about 1/4 of the last mitten to go.  If it was a weekend, it would be a slam dunk that I would finish it today, but I think at this point, I will be lucky to finish this week.  After that, I will be casting on mittens for little Dev.  

I'm a little sad about daylight savings time.  It means I am going to be coming home in the full dark at 5:30.  I don't like to exercise outside in the dark, so that means I will be working out in the house.  I miiiight need to pick up a Weight Watcher's active link to make sure that I am getting enough fitness minutes in.  I need to constantly be challenging myself so that I can be constantly improving myself.  I think it's really easy to kind of kid yourself about how much you are really doing.

Dev and I have been walking about a mile and a quarter to his school every day, I walk back home to grab the car and drive home.  This has been working out VERY well for us.  It puts us both in a positive mind frame for the day and it starts my day out with a little activity.  It's time to get my bum in the shower so I can walk that crazy kid to school.

Have a great week everyone!

03 November 2013


Planksgiving is going well.  I mean, it's only 3 days in, so it's not like it is that hard at this point.

I'm feeling a little lost this morning, since our fall fitness challenge is over.  We have the Holiday Hustle starting this week, but it's not as involved.  I'm really looking forward to the 90 minute fitness classes that are upcoming.

I'm also on day 11 of doyouyoga.com's 30 Day Yoga Challenge.  You can find out more about that challenge here.  Erin is a great yoga instructor.  Some days this is a huge challenge and some days it's just a pleasure.  Either way, you've totally got 20 minutes to add more yoga into your life.  I strongly recommend it.

Sunday mornings are my favorite.  We all get up whenever we want, Raj and I sit around drinking coffee.  I usually work on some knitting.  Deven gets to watch movies or play video games.  We all tidy up the house a bit and I try to take the dog for a 4-5 mile walk.  It's a wonderful, restorative day.

Today's project is to get going on and hopefully finish knitting my mittens.  I finished my first mitten yesterday, on to the second one.  I will probably do a proper pattern review on Ravelry and will definitely post pictures of my finished mittens once I get them both done.  They are not meant to match, but coordinate and I love the look of my first finished mitten.

Yesterday's weigh in was a really good one.  I was down 2.6 lbs for a total of 11.4 pounds lost overall.  I'm a bit over what the My Fitness Pal tracker says I am, but that's because I regained EVERYTHING and I didn't want to reset everything.  In any event, I am back on a losing trend and counting points, logging food and staying active.

Last night we went to a friend's house for s'mores, a bonfire, and conversation.  I had one s'more. To be honest, I am pretty meh about the whole deal.  I think they are overly sweet.  So yeah, I am out for future s'mores.  It didn't trigger me to eat all the sugar in the world, but I think that's because I took the time to log my points about it.  They were also offering caramel apple crisp. THAT was tempting, but after the s'more, I certainly didn't need more sugar.  In any event, I think that sticking to my whole no sugar thing is the best for me.  I was much more satisfied with the conversation, watching the kids play, watching our dog play with their dogs, and warming up by the fire.

I'm going to try to post a Sunday brain dump, so that I can keep active on this blog.  I don't have a ton of readers, but I love those that I have :) 

I am happy with the place I am at right now.  I don't need to be perfect, I just need each day to be a little better than I was the day before.  To try one thing each day that's challenging.   I've been doing that and seeing great results.

Now, off to the couch for some knitting and coffee sipping.  I'll get Sunday dinner in the crockpot soon and we will all just relax and enjoy each other.  Be well, everyone.

01 November 2013

I'm Totally Doing This

Shrinking Jeans is so awesome.

So, What's Next?

Saturday is the end of the challenge I'm on.  Well, my trainer thought of that and has created a Holiday Hustle.  It requires...

1) 8 weeks commitment.
2) Minimum of 180 cardio and 120 strength minutes
3) A virtual 5K
4) an optional (but most likely to be attended by me) boxing and functional fitness class (90 minutes every Saturday AM)

I'm excited.  I am making no claims to having things figured out, but I'm doing pretty well.  Something about the combination of regular exposure to my trainer and Weight Watchers is currently resonating.

I'm not some huge Weight Watchers proponent, but  at this moment in time, I am doing well.  I'm 5 weeks in, feeling like I am doing ok.

Tracking my food and going to meetings are huge components of my success.  Next week, I have a major challenge coming up.  I'm going to Central Iowa to see my sisters.  We get down there infrequently enough that we tend to create celebrations where they shouldn't be.  We grew up in a huge food is love family and so here comes the celebration food.

I've challenged my sisters to eat healthfully when I am there, to avoid all the treats.  And I will get them out walking.  I'm also going to be bringing my boxing gear and teaching them some sparring.  Should be fun.

One of the things that I really need to do is to keep incorporating my healthy lifestyle items into celebratory times.  There's no reason that a quick trip to see the family should pull me off course the way I seem to let it do. 

Just making small changes, day by day.