The long and winding road to fitness, day 43

I felt much more rested today and was able to get a lot more done over the course of the day.  I went out a little after 6 am for a walk…it was still terribly hot and humid, came home just a bit sweaty.  But it was much nicer at 6 am than it was this afternoon.  Whew…I hate to say this, but I’m ready for fall.  Fall has always been my favorite time of the year in Indiana and I’m sure this year will be no different.  I like those crisp mornings and the vivid blue skies, the humidity drops to a much more humane level, and you can sleep with the windows open.  It’ll be here before we know it.

I walked for 30 minutes today and worked in the garden for another 30 minutes.  That was the total of my exercise for the day.  I’ve skipped strength training for a few days, time to get back with it.  My eating was really good.  I’ve had a little less than 1500 calories for the day.  I got a lot of cooking in for food to take to work (tomorrow’s lunch is grilled veggies on whole wheat focaccia…which I made myself).  I also canned some pickles and peppers…the kind of canning where you store the jars in the fridge rather than in the pantry.  I put both of those on my veggie sandwiches…yum…better than Subway.

My next day off I’m going to have to do something with zucchini.  I think I’ll make some zucchini bread (a healthier recipe) and then just shred the rest and put it in the freezer for later.  I’ve only got one zucchini plant, but one is more than enough this year.  Maybe I’ll whip up that zucchini crust pizza I mentioned the other day.   We’ll see…

So, did you do any cooking this weekend?  What are your plans for the week?

Holy moly, this is my 200th post

The logo of the blogging software WordPress.

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I realized a couple of days ago, that I was approaching my 200th post on my blog here at Word Press.  When I looked back through the postings month by month, I realized that I’ve really gotten serious about it in the past 4 months, posting more days than not.  July was my best month to date.  I posted every single day during the month of July, often posting a blog in the morning and my fitness blog in the evening.  Now don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying I actually write a blog before work (are you serious?  I’d have to get up at 3 am in order to exercise, write my three pages and then blog).  I usually write several on my days off and post them later in the week.

I’ve always been a writer, but I was often the only person who read what I wrote.  What an honor that there are people out there who are actually reading what I’m writing, often taking the time to leave comments about it.  I feel like I’ve made new friends and reconnected with some old friends through my writing.  I’ve also been able to figure out, to a degree, this crazy thing called life by putting my feelings, thoughts and experiences into words, kind of like journaling when I was a kid but without worrying about whether or not my brothers would find my diary and tell everyone my secrets.

Speaking of secrets, I find myself debating with myself about how much of my personal life to reveal in this very public blog.  There are things I want to write about, but I have to take into consideration that the people I work with and for have access to everything I write here.  Not that I’m ashamed of anything, but there are things that I’d be uncomfortable with co-workers and employers knowing about me…or maybe I’m being egotistical in thinking they would even read what I write…or maybe not…maybe I’m just being cautious in protecting my privacy.  I’m sure my closest friends and family members know exactly what I’m talking about…but we’ll leave that for another day.

I’m so thankful for the opportunity to put my life into words (without me actually having to know anything about web design and all that putting up my blog on my own would entail).  Thanks, WordPress, for making this easy for this technologically impaired blogger.  Hey, I’m really a blogger!  Cool!

The long and winding road to fitness, day 42


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It was so nice to have the day off work…so nice, in fact, that I did a lot of nothing all day.  I didn’t even go to the grocery store…talked myself out of it.  When I realized I really didn’t need much, I decided to wait until Wednesday…I’ll stop at the store after my eye doctor appointment…hopefully this will be my final appointment with the eye doctor for a year.  The contacts feel great and my vision is good, well, except for the need for reading glasses when I’m trying to read things up close…ahh…the joys of getting older!

I took a long nap this afternoon.  I knew I was exhausted from the work week and it felt so good to be able to take a nap. Spooky was cuddled up beside me the entire time.  I feel like I’m finally refreshed and can tackle some chores tomorrow.  I did do a little house work today, but nothing too strenuous.

My eating was good today.  For lunch, I had fish, sweet potato fries and watermelon.  Along about 6 pm, I realized I was really hungry.  So I decided to mix up a smoothie for dinner.  I used half a frozen banana, some blueberries, strawberries and dark chocolate almond milk.  I should have thrown in a handful of spinach, but didn’t think of it until I was sipping it.  I tell you, those smoothies go a long way toward curbing my craving for ice cream.  I also had a serving of flaxseed crackers with Laughing Cow cheese to go along with the smoothie.  A pretty tasty dinner.  Sorry, no pictures.

I did absolutely no exercise today other than the little bit of housework I got in.  I just couldn’t get myself moving this morning.  I had plans to go for a walk, but if I don’t do that first thing in the morning, I usually don’t do it.  That’s really why I try to get my exercise in early in the day.  If I wait until later, I can come up with all kinds of reasons (okay, excuses) not to do it.  I really admire these people who work all day then slip on their running shoes and go out for a 5 mile run.  I’m usually too tired by the time I get home from work.  And yes, I know I’d probably feel energized if I would do some exercise after work.  But doing it in the morning works for me…well, except for today.

Tomorrow’s weigh in day…keeping my fingers crossed that I did enough this week to drop a pound or two.  I had a few days of not the best eating, so I hope that didn’t derail my efforts for the week.  I’ll let you all know in the morning.

What time do you think is the best time to exercise?  What works for you?

Spooky in the snow

Snow on trees, Germany

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Before you get all excited, no, we don’t have snow in Indiana right now.  We’re still stuck smack dab in the middle of this oppressive heat wave…temps in the mid 90s and humidity so high that you start sweating as soon as you step outside.  So…I decided to do something about it.  I decided to bring up pleasant winter memories to cool myself off.

A couple of winters ago we had a lot of snow.  On one occasion I opened the back door and noticed that the snow had drifted probably two feet high right up against the door and the back of the building.  I knew Spooky had never seen snow up close and personal, so I thought it would be funny to see her reaction to the pile of white stuff right outside the door.  I called her in to the kitchen (yes, she actually comes when I call her…she thinks something fun and exciting is going to happen and she doesn’t want to miss it).  As usual, she came running to me.  I picked her up and carried her to the door, opened the door, and put her down on the floor right in front of that snow drift.  I thought it would probably scare her a little, that she would be cautious in approaching it.  Nope, not my little Spooky girl.   She dove in the snow, like it was something she saw everyday.  When she came out of it, she had snow all over her face and body.  I wish I had managed to get a picture of her, maybe this winter…

There now, don’t you feel cooler already?

The long and winding road to fitness, day 41

Open book

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Ahh…it’s finally Friday and I have the entire weekend off work!!!  I don’t have a lot of running around to do (Kroger early tomorrow morning, and I think that’s going to be it for me), so I’m going to try to get some things done around the house, get in a little extra exercise, do some cooking for the upcoming week, and do a little more writing than I’ve done this week.  I’m going to start writing at least three pages in my book on the days I don’t have to work…I know I won’t have the time to do that every day, but doing it on my days off should be a good start.

I did it!  I prepared my lunch (veggies on a whole wheat sub roll and cantaloupe) and snacks (yogurt, blueberries and granola  and a Fiber One brownie, which I ended up not eating) last night so it was ready to just toss in my lunch bag this morning.  I hadn’t done that most of the week because I’d been so exhausted,  but it sure made the day go much better for me. I don’t like being in a mad rush in the morning…I kind of like to ease into the day.  I think that sets the tone for the rest of the day.  I walked for 30 minutes today, but that was all the exercise I got in today.  I did do a lot of running around the store today, so I’m sure that counts for something.  I’m thinking dancing would be fun exercise tomorrow.

I’ve been hearing thunder for the past half hour or so.   I would love to have a nice gentle rain tonight.  Don’t you love sleeping when it’s raining outside (well, unless you’re camping…then it might not be such a great thing)?

The long and winding road to fitness, day 40

Sleep On Computer

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Forty days…you read that right!  Today wasn’t my best day, for sure…too much junk food, not enough healthy food…too much stress at work, working outside until noon, sweating my head off, ending up with a terrible headache.  But tomorrow will be better.  I’ve already prepared my lunch and snacks, so no excuses tomorrow about no time in the morning.  Plus, after tomorrow I have the weekend off..yea!!

I’m not going to write much tonight, but I do want to mention that today is my 50th day in a row of writing something….pretty cool!  My goal for tonight is to get to bed early and get at least 7 hours of sleep.  In order to do that, I have to step away from the computer and get ready for bed…so that’s what I’m going to do.

What kind of goals have you set for yourself?  Do you follow through or forget them after a few days?

The long and winding road to fitness, day 39

almond milk

Holy moly..39 days!  I’m finally starting to feel like this is becoming a habit.  It’s not as much of a struggle as it was.  I’m not saying I don’t still struggle on occasion, but it’s not all day, every day.  And I’m able to bounce back from the not-so-good days quickly, not allowing those days to become weeks and negating all of my hard work.  It’s becoming easier to make the healthy choices, to do what needs to be done on a daily basis.  Good, good, good!

Today was a pretty good day.  My knee didn’t bother me too much at work, so that was a plus.  I didn’t prepare my lunch and snacks last night, so this morning I was rushing around trying to get ready, thought about just going out for lunch, then just grabbed a pouch of water packed tuna, a tomato, a pepper, and a whole wheat sub bun.  That ended up being my lunch…so not too bad.  Tonight I whipped up a smoothie using half a frozen banana, some frozen strawberries and dark chocolate almond milk…this was seriously like a milk shake, but better.  I’m thinking about making one to take to work tomorrow to have for lunch after being outside in the heat in the morning.

I didn’t get a lot of exercise in today.  I walked for a little over 15 minutes and that was it.  My knee was still a little iffy this morning and I was afraid to overdo it.  I did get a lot of walking in at work today again, as usual.  Trying to get things done for tomorrow’s truck and get the stockroom cleaned out at the same time.  It never ends…

So what’s your quick, I’m late, running out the door lunch?  Do you prepare and pack your lunch the night before or try to make time to do it while you’re rushing around in the morning?

The Confession by John Grisham


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I finished this book in less than two days.  It was that good.  I am a Grisham fan, but I think this may be his best book to date.  It’s possible I feel that way because I have such strong feelings about the subject matter of the book.  That subject is the death penalty.  Yes, this is controversial.   Many people have strong opinions, both proponents and opponents.  I’m no different.  My belief that the death penalty should be abolished isn’t based on any kind of religious views (although, if “thou shalt not kill” applies to people, it should also apply to our government), not because of any sympathy for murderers or rapists, but instead, it’s based on the simple question, “What if you’re wrong?  What if this person is innocent and you execute an innocent person?  How do you remedy that?”

The Confession actually had me in tears.  The story is about a young man wrongly accused and convicted of murdering a female classmate.  From the beginning, the reader understands that the young man did not commit the crime.  I think that made his suffering, sitting on death row awaiting his execution, all the more poignant.  Imagine knowing you were innocent and not being able to get anyone to believe you.  Seeing all of your appeals run their course, knowing that your execution date is getting closer and closer, and not being able to do anything to stop it.

I won’t divulge the entire story, but I will say that this book raises a lot of questions about the death penalty in our country, particularly in Texas, where they sort of have assembly line executions…very few people on death row (and face it, most of the people who are on death row are poor minorities..when was the last time you saw a wealthy white man executed anywhere?) are ever granted a stay of execution. 

The book also raised the question of why so many Christians are in favor of the death penalty.  That’s a question I’ve often asked myself, along with what would Jesus do in regards to the death penalty?  I find it difficult to believe that he would be in favor of it.  Don’t let that stop you from reading it, it’s not overly religious, but it does make you think.

I would hope that thousands upon thousands of people will read this book and question their beliefs about the death penalty, along with the really big question…what if you’re wrong, what if you execute an innocent man?


The long and winding road to fitness, day 38

I had the day off work today.  Did I accomplish anything?  Hmm…the answer to that would be “not much”.  I ordered a smart phone (my first) and it came today.  I’ve been playing with it all afternoon. 

Let’s see, I’ve managed to log in to Facebook, WordPress, my email, take pictures, oh yeah, and make phone calls…not too long ago, that was the primary purpose of a phone, wasn’t it?  Paging through the manual, I almost feel overwhelmed with all of the options and apps available.  I know, I know…there’s no law that says I have to learn it all today..but I’m impatient that way…I want to know it all right now!!

I ended up cancelling my appointments today…hair stylist and eye doctor.  I woke up in so much pain, I could hardly walk.  Took some drugs and went back to bed for a little while.  When I woke up, I felt a little better, but not well enough to venture out very far.  I did something to my knee at work yesterday…I can’t really figure out what, but all of a sudden, I had a sharp pain in the inner front portion of my left knee.  I almost couldn’t walk.  It eased up, but was still hurting when I went home.  Today it’s stiff and still a little sore.    So, who knows?  Hopefully I’ll feel totally recovered tomorrow.

I didn’t do much exercising today…some upper body strength training. 8 exercises, 2 sets of each.  I tried the exercise bike, but it bothered my knee.  I figured I was probably better off skipping it today….you know, the whole “live to fight another day” thing.   My eating was pretty good though.  I had not quite 1500 calories for the day.  I’m taking a veggie sub to work tomorrow…I make a pretty good one using a whole wheat sub bun and lots of different veggies.  I think I may use one wedge of Laughing Cow cheese on it tomorrow.  I’ve still got to cut up the cutest little watermelon…

Of course, how can you really tell how small this watermelon is in this picture?  Duh…I hope it tastes good…I love summer melons.

Do you ever get discouraged with the limitations of your body?  The aches and pains, the recurring injuries?  How do you deal with that?


The long and winding road to fitness, day 37

Freezing hot (62/365)

Image by LifeSupercharger via Flickr

Well….not such a great day of eating today.  I was so tired after working open to close yesterday, that I couldn’t drag myself out of bed in time to make anything to take to work today.  I ended up eating from the stupid, evil vending machine.  I had a bag of Cheez-Its for what I guess you’d say was my lunch today.  Unfortunately, breakfast was no better.  I ate a SuziQ…you know, those chocolate cakey things with the cream filling…not a lot of nutritional value in either of those choices, I’m afraid.

After work, I stopped at the grocery store, despite my vow not to go grocery shopping when I’m hungry or tired (and I was both today).  I walked down the cookie aisle, looked at the Fig Newtons (which really wouldn’t have been a terrible choice), then walked away.  When I walked by the deli, I looked at the BBQ wings, then walked away.  In the freezer section, I looked at the ice cream.  Then I looked at it some more.  Then I reminded myself that just a few days ago, I said I wasn’t going to buy ice cream.  I ended up buying a box of strawberry fruit bars…80 calories apiece…I think that was a better choice than the ice cream that I’ve been eating.  I ended up buying all healthy food and no diet Pepsi.  I think I’m getting closer to giving it up (again).  Anyhow, I’m feeling pretty good about my shopping trip…oh yeah, and that I have tomorrow off work!

Do you struggle to purchase healthier food and beverage choices?  How do you cope?