Sunday, September 30, 2012

October Plan!

I am turning 43 on October 27th.  I would like to note that I am NOT one of those people who needs to celebrate their birthday for a whole month.  But since this is my year of change, I wanted to do something significant for my last month of being 42. 

Here's the plan.  I will walk at least 30 minutes every night.  No nights off in October.  I have joined Weight Watchers as well.  I was getting frustrated with the lack of dramatic weight loss with all my walking and knew I had to step it up. 

So now I am trying to think of something special to do on my birthday.  For the first time it won't be about the dinner out or the big dessert.  It will be about me getting healthier.  I will let you know. 

I will also post something every day.  I will take a photo on my walk or update you on my thoughts of the day.  I don't know what it will be but it will be.  Hope I don't drive off my twelve readers. 

Have a great night!  Time for Amazing Race, then Dexter returns.  Gotta sign off!

Sunday, September 23, 2012

The Master - 2012


Remember how I used to write about movies?  Well I went to the movies today.

I got up early and took a very chilly walk, it was only in the forties.  There were some random oddities on this walk.  First I passed a guy standing in front of his house.  He smiled and said hello.  I smiled back, listening to the Beatles tell me about their "Hard Days Night".  But the dude wanted to chat about the weather. 

"Cold morning!"  He announced.

"Yep."  I smiled, still moving.

"You're bundled up today."

Huh?  That is creepy.  Is someone noticing me on my walks?

"Sure is."

"It was a hundred a couple of weeks ago.  I had frost on my car.  It is crazy."

At this point I made it past the house and left him behind.  Then I suddenly had a walking buddy.  A little black and white dog.  He kept walking around me in a little dance.  I remember this from my old dog Phil.  He didn't want to be caught. 

Across the street his mom was hollering at him to come home.  She was in her bathrobe and his good brother was watching with disapproval.  My buddy got close then darted away, really loving the game. 

I stopped and took out an earbud.  I tried to get him close to capture him, but he knew that trick.  His mom finally got him in the yard and yelled an apology.

I told her it was OK, I'd had that kind of dog before. 

"You want another one?"  She asked.

I declined.

On the bridge I passed a woman carrying a baby and pushing a stroller.  I remember before having children that I used to wonder why people did this. 

Then I had the trail to myself.  It was a good walk.  When I got home I took a shower, ate some late breakfast and went to the movies.

I love Phillip Seymour Hoffman.  When I saw he had a new movie I was ready to jump in the car.  Joaquin Phoenix is also good.  And I like Amy Adams, more when she's funny, but she is good.

I did not like "The Master".

Joaquin Phoenix looks like this the whole movie.  Remember the drugged out scenes in "Walk the Line"?  That is this whole movie.

Hoffman is his usual but it is just strange.  He is a cult leader.  Or an innovator.  Or just a nut.  He believes that in all our the past lives we experience trauma that we carry to our next life.  Without working through these we can't be perfect. 

He kind of adopts Joaquin after he stows away on a boat they are having a wedding on.  They start this strange homoerotic yet sexless relationship. 

Amy Adams is his wife and she seems to be the real power behind the throne. 

It was a couple of hours and I must have looked at my watch a half dozen times.  I think I even dozed a little.  I just couldn't get into it. 

I left the movie and felt like I had just lost time I would never get back.

The best part.  I got to my car and called to let my husband know I was coming home.  I turned to check traffic and saw this.

A bear.

Buckled up. 

It was really a random day all over.

Friday, September 21, 2012


I have been having a bad week.  I feel like I've had some setbacks.  Work is gearing up for the holidays and I am in retail.  It will only get crazier over the next 90 days.   Almost every day this week I have been late coming home.  Then I am not walking like I should. 

I walked on Sunday.  I took Monday off, doing the stationary bike instead.  I walked a couple of miles on Tuesday.  Then I did the stationary bike again on Wednesday until the pedal fell off. 

Last night I got home late and was just tired.  I made the mistake of sitting down in my chair and not walking.  Then tonight I got home.  I knew I was going out later so I am sitting here again.  I didn't want to get all sweaty before I go out.

But tomorrow I am back.  I have found that by not walking the last couple of days I am feeling more tense and emotional.  I can't seem to shake it.  I need to get that sweat out and push all the crap aside and let it go.  It will still be there when I come back home, but I feel stronger and ready to meet the charge.

I will walk. 


Sunday, September 16, 2012

Going One Way

Normally when I am walking I leave the house and walk a while then turn around and walk home.  This is an easy way to control how far I am walking.   If I am getting achy or my feet are sore, I just turn around early. 

Yesterday I wanted to challenge myself and decided to see if I could walk from the next town over to my house.   This was a little scary.  It is seven miles, a mile farther than I've walked to date.  It was also one way.  There was no turning around if I got tired or achy.  There would only be a call for rescue. 
I posted on Facebook that I was doing it.   Got to have my accountability! 
My husband drove me to the town and dropped me off.  He wanted freak out the bikers on the trail by yelling at me as I got out and saying I could just walk home.  But we were afraid someone might call the cops so we chickened out.
A lady eating a protein bar smiled and said "Beautiful day!"
I told her I was walking to the next town. 
"Good for you!"
I plugged in my ear buds, started my Runkeeper and was off. 
I have driven this road thousands of times.  I have lived in my house sixteen years and taken this path to work almost every day.  It is different walking it.  This first several miles are wide open.  No trees, no shade at all.   The cars passed on the highway only fifteen feet away but I just heard my music.  The minutes really flew by.  Suddenly I was an hour in and the trees were in sight.  I watched for all the landmarks I knew and had to catalog them in a new way. 
The drive between these two towns is fifteen minutes.  Slowing down makes everything more visible and somehow more real. 
There was a small hill and when I came over it I saw the point.  It is a turn off to another town.  This was my turn around point from my six mile walk.  I knew I could make it. 
There were a lot of bikers on the road but no other walkers or runners.  I had it to myself for the afternoon.  Under the trees it felt familiar, all the walking I've been doing has had shade like this. 
Finally I passed the little landmarks I know.  The two little gravel roads, the other paved road and finally the first of the bridges.  I knew it was close now.  I heard the voice on my tracker tell me I was past six miles .  I had walked my farthest distance. 
It is hard to describe the elation I was feeling.  It spurred me on to make it home. 
I passed the final bridge and turned to the streets toward home.  I had been walking for over two hours.  My feet weren't sore, my legs didn't ache.  I turned the corner and my house was in sight.  The front door opened and my husband came out with the dog and put his arms over his head in celebration. 
The dog didn't recognize me and started barking until I got close. 
My husband hugged me and told me how proud he was.  I was sweaty and thirsty.  He had a lemonade waiting for me by my chair.
I did it.  Something that even a couple of weeks ago would have seemed crazy.  I am still discovering my potential.  What I didn't know during this trek was that I had people cheering me on.  On Facebook my friend Michelle was keeping our exercise group posted on my progress.  She watched me and updated my status.  My friends gave love and support. 
I will be 43 in about six weeks.  I want to do something big for that day.  I want to start my 43rd year as a year of change and transformation.  I want to see what I am capable of.  

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

One Month!

This is me on August 11th.  It has been one month since the 5K.  In that time I have walked almost every day.  I have only skipped three days.  One was my wedding anniversary.  One was a day hotter than the blazes.  And then there was MeatFest.  On the first two, I did some stationary bike.  On MeatFest, there was none of that. 

I don't know if I have posted about MeatFest.  It is a celebration held on the Sunday of Labor Day weekend each year and family members plan their whole weekend around it.  My husband smokes many pounds of meat.

Over the years we have developed a number of MeatFest traditions.  One is INSANE amounts of meat.  My husband smoked about 106 total pounds of meat.  Then there are other meat based foods and many side dishes.  It is crazy.  It is the most awesome of all holidays.

One big tradition of MeatFest is the pre-meal fighting.  It happens in almost all the households that celebrate it. 

Smoking meat is grumpy work for my beloved husband.  He wants it to be perfect and gets very sweaty and cranky.  While I try to follow the predetermined start time it never works as planned.  The family should just plan on it being at least an hour late. 

Being late makes ME cranky.  So you have two cranky people trying to get 106 pounds of meat ready to go.  So we bicker.  But then before you know it we are sitting at the table loading up on protein and all is well.  Since I had to work on the day and then make my dessert and help pack up the meat, I didn't take a walk that day.  But I did sweat.  Smoking and fighting is sweaty work.

So that is the only day I didn't exercise. 

But in the last month I have walked 69.2 miles in 28:16:50 hours and burned 11,296 calories. Which just about covers what I ate at MeatFest. 

Now for more miles and more salads.

Thursday, September 6, 2012

My Walking Playlist - Warm Up Songs

When I am walking I like to listen to music.  This is really the only time I do.  In the car I listen to the radio on the way to work because I know someone who is on the station.  On the way home I listen to audiobooks. 

I have a pretty eclectic mix of songs. A lot of them remind me of movies that they have been in. 

I need to have warm up songs.  I read about how especially being diabetic, if I want to walk for weight loss and general fitness, I have to walk slow for five minutes.  This will cause me to burn fat instead of sugar. (Don't ask me for the science.  I am just trusting the internet)  Since I tend to match the pace of the music, it has to be slow and easy.

My current favorite is called "Apron Strings" by Kate Bush.  It was featured in the movie "She's Having A Baby".  It plays over a montage.  Jake's wife has just been rushed for an emergency c-section, he doesn't know what is happening.  After a movie showing all the things that drove him crazy about his marriage, we see all the moments of joy as they threaten to slip away.

The song is haunting.  Through the whole movie you wonder why Elizabeth McGovern put up with Kevin Bacon and those three minutes redeem him completely. 

My other warm up is "Into The Mystic" by Van Morrison.  It is featured in a movie called "Immediate Family". 

Glenn Close and James Wood are the perfect yuppie couple who can't get pregnant.  Mary Stuart Masterson and Kevin Dillon have bad eighties hair and a unplanned pregnancy. 
They come together and the women are getting to know each other.  Lucy (Masterson) finds a CD of Van Morrison and asks Linda (Close) to play a certain song.  In that moment they bond over the song and let their guard down for a few minutes while the music plays.  The song takes me to that moment every time.  It is a really sweet movie.
The final song (I can hear my husband rolling his eyes) is "The Wind Beneath My Wings" by Bette Midler.  Sadly I know it very well. 

I was cruising the movie channels this weekend and caught it right as Barbara Hershey is having her baby.  I don't remember what I was watching before it, but it was equally schmaltzy and saccharine. 

"Now Beaches?" 

I think he actually moaned with physical discomfort. 

But it is a great warm up song.

Next time I will talk about the songs that get me pumped and moving along for my walk.

Monday, September 3, 2012

Life in Pictures

When we are young we want our picture taken.  It didn't matter if your hair wasn't perfect, you were wearing your pajamas or you were surrounded by your goofy siblings and cousins. 

Even in a bare midriff with shorts.  (I haven't worn a bare midriff since) 

Then one day you start the little tricks to avoid getting your picture taken.  Here I am standing behind my sister so you only see half of me.  I am so sneaky!

My most dastardly trick was becoming the photographer.  It was the perfect way to record the moments and avoid the awkwardness of trying to position myself in the back of the group. 

Today I walked five miles.  When I got home I asked my husband to take a picture of me.

So here I am.  I am fat.  I am really sweaty.  My hair was a nightmare.

But I walked five miles.