Wednesday, July 31, 2013

A simple poll today...

I would open a Hawaiian restaurant or an antique store.

I know it's usually meant as a rhetorical question but I'm curious to know, in ANY aspect of your life, what would you attempt to do if you knew you could not fail?

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Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Going the distance

I remember the lengths I would go to in order to avoid walking even short distances.  A trip to the grocery store at my heaviest was an exercise in pain with my lower back screaming after 10 minutes much less the typical 60 minute walk.  Vacations were always seemingly active going from one end of Hawaiian islands to the other and if I really thought about it, for a few years we were basically shut in's in paradise.  The island cruising was done in a car with the least amount of walking possible.  A quick 20 steps to many 'road side' attractions, making sure if we did any "hikes" they were flat and less than 1/2 mile if possible and sometimes we would even pull up somewhere, park and watch...never even getting out of the car.  Many restaurant meals were purchased to go with stacks of carry out containers (they separate sides, extra bags/cups for condiments, etc) and we would eat at the table in our rental home or condo.  At our heaviest, there were some places we just couldn't fit but didn't want to give those places up completely so carry out it was.  Our usual condo on Kauai has an outdoor table on the lanai that I couldn't even sit in until this year because the seats with arms were so narrow so we didn't even get to enjoy eating al fresco for a few years.  Most times it was sitting inside still seeing the ocean but not breathing in the ocean air, feeling the breeze and hearing the crashing waves.  I think of how inactive those vacations were compared to how active this years was with stand up paddling, kayaking and spontaneously walking a 5K and it seems like a dream I never thought would come true.

Vacations aren't the only time we are active.  Weekends are almost completely draining over the past months.  Today as I sit here with my legs sore from yet another 3 day weekend of walking around like we're training for a backpacking trek through Europe, I am amazed at how much I can walk now.  We went to this antique store with 2 stories a few weeks ago and as I got to the top of the stairs, I was amazed at the fact that I wasn't winded.  I spent quite a few years looking for an elevator or slowly taking the stairs only to have my heart beating in my chest for a good 3-4 minutes while I recovered.  Heck it was like that every time I went upstairs to go to the bathroom or head to bed each night.  It was a sad way to live and sucks that I accepted that for myself.  It seems like another life sometimes but I'm so glad I still remember those things and am thankful every day that we made the choice to lose the weight.  I may be in a snail-ish pattern right now but I will always be thankful that I can look back and see life changing steps in the right direction!

What are some life changing new triumphs from your heaviest weight to now?

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Monday, July 29, 2013

Dairy goodness, DVD dupe and needing a real rest day

Holy schmoly, what a weekend!  I am so whipped.

Friday, I finally broke out the ice cream maker (affiliate link)  that my friend bought me for my birthday last year along with the Jeni's Splendid Ice Creams at Home (affiliate link)  cookbook.  Oh. My. Lord.  I should not know how to make dark chocolate ice cream this good.

The Mr and I enjoyed a few servings this weekend and price wise we got about double the amount for $1.25 less for all of the ingredients than we would pay in the store so there ya go.  I'm thinking of making peach ice cream for my grandparents and the Mr.  I'm not a peach person and it will keep him from coming down in the middle of the night to find me on the floor with the freezer opened with my face slammed in a plastic pint container with a ring of dairy goodness around my lips.

There was this big expo in town and a carnival so that was our high cal day.  We walked around for 4 hours...aka: when our legs almost came out of the sockets.  I haven't been in that much pain in a long time.  Told you I'd jinx it in my TTS post Friday.  Then when we were done there, we had some shopping to do and walked some more.  I ended up burning 1200 calories that day.  Not bad for a "rest day" so we switched our rest day to yesterday.  We stocked up on fresh produce for the week and we're ready to roll on that front.

We rented two movies last night, Stoker and The Impossible.  Do not waste a second of your life on Stoker.  We were trailer duped!  I wanted to go gorilla style on it.  (ie- Poo in my hand and throw it at the DVD)  But me thinks they may frown upon fecal matter in their rentals and then force me to buy it.  The Impossible (affiliate link)  was the true story about a family in the tsunami in Thailand...have tissues handy for that one.  Definite renter if you haven't seen it yet.  Naomi Watts was amazing.  But then again, I'm probably the last to see it.

I don't think we have anything planned for today other than a booty kickin' workout and I'm good with that.  I'm sure I'll find something to get into but I think the Mr might appreciate a day of doing nothing and honestly, so would I!

What did you do this weekend?

This post contains a few affiliate links.  Should you buy through them, a magic fairy will deposit a few cents under my pillow.

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Friday, July 26, 2013

Then and Now: My battle with Tarsal Tunnel Syndrome

(Due to the number of emails I get regarding this post, the most asked question I get is who is my chiropractor.  I just want to mention up front that my chiropractor is not accepting new patients so I do not give out his name.  When looking up a chiropractor, I made sure they had a background in treating sports-related injuries.  While TTS is not necessarily a sports injury, chiropractors with that background tend to have more experience treating it.  I used to find a chiropractor in my area.)

It seems like only yesterday I was in tears over having to cancel our trip to Chicago for New Years Eve because I couldn't walk to the door without searing pain much less around the world's most walkable city.

Most of you probably assume I've been all healed up and am back to normal, after all, it has been just over 7 months since I was diagnosed.  I discussed my diagnosis and treatments here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here and here.  (I know that looks insane to link back to all of the posts but I want people who may have found the site looking for hope with their own Tarsal Tunnel Syndrome issues to be able to see how I progressed.)

I am not back to my pre-diagnosis abilities but I'm pretty close.  There are things I have come to terms with that *may* always be a part of my reality like stiff ankles in the morning, achy but not painful muscles after long walks of 3-4+ hours, physical therapy exercises after workouts because when I skip them for a few days, I can tell a difference and not in a good way.

Here are the improvements I've made since my December diagnosis:

Then:  I thought a podiatrist was the only person who could help me with this.

Now:  After a stroke of luck, I found a chiropractor who had successfully treated this condition numerous times.  He specialized in sports medicine so he treated marathoners and runners.  I feel like finding a chiropractor that lists this and has an intricate education in leg muscles and potential issues with them was key.  This was my first time at a chiro and I am so grateful for him.  My podiatrist was actually making my condition worse, never even examined my foot and gave me no real direction.  My chiro did a thorough exam concluding I had not only TTS and Achilles tendonitis but also had a weak muscle structure in the front of my legs that was causing my feet to overcompensate.  He treated each condition and it was his mission to get me better not keep me as a patient and certainly not to do surgery.  I know that my experience is not necessarily the norm as my case was mild but he mentioned the key to success is treating it early and not putting off seeking treatment.

Then: Sometimes just standing up would cause me to wince in pain and walking was not possible past 20 minutes.

Now: I can walk for a minimum of 5 hours without getting leg fatigue.  Anything over 6 hours, I need to make sure I stretch really well afterward or I'll pay for it the next day.  This is a miracle in itself and anyone who has dealt with this knows it.

Then:  Nerve pain and twitching so bad that sleep was not possible the first week.

Now:  I have been cured of the nerve pain/twitching and that between the home ultrasound machine (affiliate link)  I used initially and then the laser therapy the chiropractor did on me to break down scar tissue.

Then:  A painful "catching" of the tendon between my tarsal tunnel and the bone spur that was so bad it could knock me off my feet.  Also a nice case of Achilles tendonitis.  Bonus!  (Dripping with sarcasm)

Now:  Thanks to the breaking up of scar tissue around the bone spur in the back of my ankle, stretches and physical therapy exercises this is no longer an issue.  Every morning while I brush my teeth, I stretch out both legs with a 30-second calf stretch, a 30 second Achilles stretch then switch and repeat on the other leg.  I end every workout with a session on my balance board(affiliate link) calf, quad and ankle stretch.  None of these are optional.

Then:  The pain was so bad I could not even rest my feet on the floor as a passenger in a car or lay my feet on the mattress to sleep.

Now:  The ultrasound and laser therapy (class 4 laser) helped with all nerve pain making sleep and being chauffeured possible.  I would recommend anyone seeking treatment to ask if their chiropractors office has a class 4 laser as this was key in my recovery and it should be common at most offices.

Then:  I had to alter my exercise routine to go from doing plyo, high impact and pretty much anything I wanted to have to be seated and do NO weight bearing exercise.

Now:  I am able to do moderate impact exercise with a few high impact moves like fighter kicks or anything where the impact is front to back on my feet.  Exercises, where the impact is side to side like jumping jacks, can sometimes make me very sore the next day.  This is getting less frequent and is seeming to improve.

Then:  I had no hope that I would ever be normal again.

Now:  I know that as long as I continue with physical therapy exercises and stretching, I should be able to control this condition and live a normal life.

To those of you who may be searching for some kind of information regarding this condition it is important to note that I am NOT a doctor and none of what I have done should be construed as medical advice for your personal situation!   I am simply relaying my experience with this condition so that you can get what I didn't when I was diagnosed...hope.  Consult a physician for your personal diagnosis and recommended treatment.  As long as you have not ignored the pain for an extended period of time, there can be hope to *potentially* be treated non-surgically.  As long as you continue physical therapy exercises daily, you may never have to deal with it again.  My case appears to have been minor in the grand scheme of horror stories I've read but any pain from this condition doesn't feel minor when you're going through it.

Trust your gut.  If the doctor who diagnosed you doesn't seem to have your best interest at heart, go elsewhere.  This applies to any health problem.  Be your own advocate!

Don't be afraid to try alternative medicine like a chiropractor or even acupuncture and deep tissue massage.  I owe my chiro my life.  My depression was all-encompassing and suffocating until I found Dr. B and he told me that he would treat me and everything would be okay.  I can't say that my experience will be yours but anything is worth a try for better health.

Mentally push through the inevitable bouts of frustration on how long recovery takes/is taking.  We live in an instant gratification society and this injury will not properly heal if you push yourself when your body isn't ready.  The best advice my chiro gave me after he cleared me for exercise was to "let pain be my guide."  If it hurt, I stopped and/or modified.

Keep a journal!  From beginning to end, it's important to see the little strides.  I used to not be able to stand long enough to make my lunch.  20 minutes was my limit.  It's easy to take for granted being able to stand as long as I want now and you will appreciate the strides made, no matter how small they may seem to others.

Hang in there and try to stay off the internet horror story sites.  All this did was, frankly, scare the shit out of me!  For every horror story, there are others who were treated, recovered and never bothered to go back to those forums to say "hey everybody, I'm better and this is what worked for me!"  For as informational as the internet can be, it can also be a source of great anxiety, fear and hopelessness which is the whole reason I have shared my personal experience with you.

*2020 Update*

I see this post is getting some traction again so I wanted to update a little more.  I have been TTS free for almost 7 years now.  I'm sharing another potential treatment option that has gained popularity in treating TTS since this first published.  Dry Needling is a treatment I did for compartment syndrome I got in 2016 which is where your muscles lock up and don't release.  (Mine was caused by being crammed on an 8 hour flight in coach with no way to move.)  My physical therapist mentioned it as a treatment for TTS when I listed it as a previous condition.  Research for dry needling in your area to see if this could be an option for you!  If you choose to proceed with it, this treatment should only be done by a trained physical therapist or chiropractor.   Be well!

This post contains a few affiliate links to items I've used to aid my recovery.  I will get a minor commission should you choose to purchase through them.

*Again, I am not a doctor and all information in my blog posts regarding Tarsal Tunnel Syndrome should not be construed as medical advice, only my personal experience as stated in the disclaimer tab. Consult a proper physician for your particular situation!*

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Thursday, July 25, 2013

Push It Real Good

While this may conjure up images of Salt n' Pepa back in the day jammin' out showing us that ladies can rap too (or a Turbo Fire session for the rest of you Turbo peeps), it reminds me of a good workout that leaves me a quiverin' heap.  Last night we did the Lower Body Total Trainer/Free Weight Hybrid workout.  For those that need a refresher...

If you missed this the first time and want a description of the exercises, click here.

It's been a few weeks since we've done it and I thought I missed it.  Maybe not.  Well no, that's not true, I did miss that feeling of having pushed myself to the limits when I'm done.  I think by the time we get to the lateral lunges, we're both shaking and feeling like anything else we complete is done so out of pushing through that and digging deep.  That's a great feeling!  There is nothing like knowing you did above and beyond and really, in this weight loss game, you can't get mo' bettah than that!

What workout makes you push beyond your usual exertion?

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Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Well, he did it...a day in pictures

The Mr kept a secret from me for 4 whole days!  It was killing him inside, he was about to burst but he did it.  We worked out early in the morning and he even asked if I wanted hints as we were en route and I told him no which I'm sure only added to his potential to spontaneously burst into flames.  Those flames would've been quickly doused by the weather...

Another instance of Mr plans...God laughs

He was pretty bummed about the weather but I didn't care.  I was just glad he planned a day to surprise me.  He doesn't do it often because he acts like he has no idea how to do such things.

You be the judge.

I love animals...


I love Christmas...


We packed a healthy lunch of turkey wraps, carrots and fruits but...

...he knows I love chocolate...


...and antiques.


Sometimes, so does he.

All in all, it was a wonderful day with my...

Has your sweetie ever planned a fun day for you?  What did you do?

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Monday, July 22, 2013

Overhyped, market fresh and adieu to open houses?

What day is it?

It has been a whirlwind weekend and it's not over for us.

Friday it was off to solve an issue for the MIL so we hung out there for about 90 minutes.  (She doesn't live in town so there was a little driving involved)

Saturday we were all over town from morning to night.  We went to a couple of farmers markets and actually got a good haul at the first one and not much at the second one.

We got 5 plums and 5 peaches but I wasn't about to start stacking

I'm thinking we can take the 2nd one off of our list for the season.  I like the area but we rarely find much there so we'll drive a little further for better prices and selection.  We went to a little patisserie in a historic neighborhood and as we were walking off a little bit of what we ate, we got caught in the rain sans umbrella.  Neither of us minded and I looked like a drowned rat by the time we got back to the car.  We ate lunch then off to do some of our grocery shopping.  We went to a different Trader Joe's and while it might be convenient at the time, it's just not worth it.  We always feel out of sorts and we forget things because it's set up differently.  Then it was back to the house before movie time with friends for the evening.  For those of you all chompin' at the bit to see The Conjuring...I'd save it for a rental.  It was WEAK and overhyped!  I'm even a big horror wimp but this was just ugh.  The scariest parts have all been given away in the trailer.  I kept saying "okay, now it's going to get good!" when something would happen and it never did.  All four of us gave it a thumbs down.  Their puppy was even bored and gives it four paws the mud...with a little poo on them.  Boo.

I woke up yesterday with a splitting migraine but much to be done so no down time available.  We had to workout earlier (for us) so we went down at 11:15am and did Turbo Fire.  I had a migraine while doing it and my eustachian tubes completely shut so balance and hearing were fun.  How I managed to burn 780 cals while I feel like I half assed it so bad is beyond me but whatever, I'll take it.  We went to a few open houses and found a place that's probably already sold that I wouldn't have minded buying.  It wasn't pit in your stomach in a good way home but it had enough room for us and potential for a few side projects.  When it comes down to it, I guess we're 'deed in hand' people and we're 1-2 years away from that so there's no point in going to open houses anymore.  He gripes about wasting gas and gets nothing out of it and it just reminds me that we can't do anything where buying is concerned so while I was fine with it before, I guess I'm not anymore so our Sundays will now be wide open to do nothing.  We were going to a family get together later and I just wasn't up for trying to pick and choose something from what they had available.  I made homemade spicy shrimp and grilled zucchini over rice and boxed it up to take and reheat.  I wish I hadn't overcooked the rice initially because it was a heap and I didn't really care for it but it was filling and I didn't feel like I was missing anything with the burgers, brats, corn, etc.

Out and about today.

Do anything (or nothing) of note this weekend?

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Friday, July 19, 2013

Broken umber-ella ella ella and what I'm reading this week

Last night we had a pop up storm that literally sat on 5 miles around our house for 2 hours not moving.  In the process, it got violent and broke our umbrella.  I'm NOT a happy girl because we don't have money to replace it right now.  The Mr went to Home Depot and got some metal putty crap.  I haven't seen it yet but I'll  give it a glance later today to see how it's holding up.  Unfortunately we're going to have to only have it up while we're out there and then take it down in case of pop ups and wind.  Fingers crossed we can keep this jerry rigged version until Fall or a huge mega clearance goes on.  

Let's get to...

10 Children's Games You Won't Believe Got Banned  (This is why kids are heavy.  Seriously...go PLAY!)

11 Sounds Your Children Have Probably Never Heard  (Thank God we don't have kids to make fun of us when we reminisce every other day)

Are Artificial Sweeteners Really Going to Kill Me? 

The Most Common Cooking Mistakes  (Great tips!)

Elders React to Twerking (video showing twerking so determine if you should watch it at work)

How to Find Happiness by Being Happy About "Nothing"

How to Make Your Vacation Buzz Last   (Yes buzz is long since gone)

Is Flashing Your Car's Headlights Protected by the First Amendment?

Kids React to Bi-racial Cheerios Commercial  (video- if you haven't seen it.  I weep a little less for the future)

Michael C. Hall on Kevin Pollack Chat show (video- this is for the SERIOUS MCH/Dexter/Six Feet Under fan, it's 2 hours because of the interviewer.  BUT by far the best MCH interview I've seen.  He's hilarious.)

My Girlfriend Weighs More Than Me...So What

Obese Boy Scouts Banned from Jamboree  (Not sure how I feel about this one)

PBS Spoofs Reality Shows with Fake Trailers  (It is SO sad that any of these trailers could be totally real nowadays.)

The Best Power Foods for Women

10 Ideas for Small Spaces  (Duly noted)

This weekend we're taking in a flick with friends and going to a birthday celebration.

What's on your agenda for the weekend?  Read anything interesting lately?

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Thursday, July 18, 2013

I caved in

Last night I caved in and watched The Notebook.

I'm one of those people who boycotts movies that become really popular and take on lives of their own.  I've never seen Twilight, Lord of the Rings, Saw/Hostel genre movies and The Notebook was another one of those that was just like "ugh, I'm tired of hearing about it."  (Edit:  Lord of the Rings and Saw/Hostel movies are NOT a genre I enjoy so I will never see them, ever.  I'm not rebelling against them, they just don't interest me.  They're as appealing as watching paint dry to me as some boring genre might be to you.  Had to be addressed since people apparently have strong attachment to the Rings movies.  As you were and back to the point...)

Now that 9 years has passed and it was free on Starz, I thought I'd see what all of the fuss was about especially since I laughed at the thought of Ozzy, Sharon and Kelly curling up in the family bed and bawling over it.  (True according to them!)  Of course I made the Mr watch it with me.  I wasn't going to suffer alone.  Heh.  Everyone said to have the tissues handy and I did.  I knew the gist of the ending within the first 2 minutes which meant I spent 117 minutes completely irritated.  I didn't like the acting in it at all by McAdams and Gosling.  I wanted to draw eyebrows on her and shave him down so he'd stop resembling a yeti.  Her flippity personality made me grind my teeth and his annoying "I'm so cool" persona just did not connect with me at all.  Oh and what was up with her dad!?  He looked like a cartoon character...or Sacha what's his face married to Isla Fisher with a hipster mustache. It was completely impossible for me not to want to bust out laughing every time he was on the screen.  Basically, they could've pieced together the stuff with the old people and I would've been fine.  Actually I wouldn't have been because well, you've seen it and if you've been reading, you know that subject touches my family.  (Not going to ruin it for people who haven't seen it)  So I couldn't help but think of the time that will be our family and THAT'S what made me cry.  Well, that and the VERY end.  Didn't see that coming.

So, was I glad I saw it?  Meh.  I could've lived without it.  (And I'm a chick flicker!)

This could be because I didn't like it or it could be because everyone likes it so much, I hold it to a higher standard that will likely never be met.

Do you jump on the pop culture movie bandwagon, wait for years to pass before watching or are there some movies you just refuse to watch based on their popularity because you're all rebellious/stubborn like that?

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Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Self reflection on the menu

This past weekend we were lucky enough to see a friend of ours swinging through town on a quick overnighter.  I've written about this guy before and I have to say we always feel so energized when we leave him.  His enthusiasm is contagious no matter what his future plans.  He asked how the blog was going since he hasn't been able to keep up lately and I told him sometimes I feel like I have nothing to offer because we're stuck right now.  I feel like "still exercising...still trying to find a balance...still exciting!"  He said maybe to think back to how things used to be and see if there was anything I could offer newer readers who maybe haven't been along for the ride.  I noted his suggestion and later that night I got to thinking about the first time we met him and his ex-girlfriend (a friend of mine) when they were coming into town.

When they first moved to Chicago (a town the Mr and I both LOVE) we were quite honestly, too fat to be able to visit them.  I can't remember exactly when they moved but we were at or close to maximum density.  She begged me to come to visit and I would put her off not because I didn't want to go but because I was too embarrassed to admit that we couldn't "do" that town.  That is a walking city and even short distances would've had me huffing and puffing at 450-494 pounds.  Not to mention many of the restaurants there are short on space and try to cram as many tables in as they can.  So not a lot of room for a big ass to be trying to suck it in between full chairs while dealing with the disgusted looks of people having to scoot out of the way and being humiliated in front of our friends.  The whole potential of the situation was enough to send me in a fetal position sucking my thumb.

When they came to visit in February 2010, I was 380 lbs so I was 114 lbs down from my highest but we were still not at that place where we could go to any restaurant we wanted.  Invitations to things were still being turned down if we didn't know the restaurant or they had chairs we couldn't fit in or booths only.  I was very insistent that we go to this one ethnic restaurant because 1)  I thought they'd like it and 2) I knew for sure we'd fit there.  I think she might have suggested someplace initially and I internally freaked out and said "oh, we can go there but I was really hoping we could go here because I think you guys would love it and it's one of our favorite restaurants" and really built it up like it was the best place ever.  Thankfully she agreed to go there, we got a nice table with chairs with no arms and we were able to enjoy our time with our friends without a social anxiety pit in our stomachs.

When we got together with him last weekend, we suggested one of our favorite hipster pizza places not because we knew we would fit but because it was good.  Of course there is a wrench thrown into it.  They have chairs with no arms on all of the tables but then they have like 4-5 bar stool tables along the wall.  I HATE bar stool tables and they've tried to seat us there before and I've asked for the low (normal height) tables.  This ass is still not ready for every bar stool chair out there since we had to actually leave a restaurant once because that was all they had.  Baby still got back.  Wouldn't you know, those bastards stuck us at the bar stool table!?  Internally I was freaking out and just praying to God we didn't have to say "excuse me Miss?  Only one butt cheek sits on this stool, we need a short table."  But thankfully we didn't have to.  I now know I can fit at the table and be fine.  Granted, I'm still not wild about them because I'm tall and my knees either knock against the table or my legs are almost long enough to hit the floor but then I'd be sitting weird with my back arched like I'm trying to get people to look at my boobs.  This was yet another step into feeling somewhat normal at a restaurant and for anyone who has been morbidly obese, knows that restaurants can be a big source of emotional stress before ever stepping foot in them.

I'm grateful to my friend for suggesting I look back to remind me of how far I've/we've come given my current state of stuckitude.  I'm glad I can actually go into a restaurant without feeling that sense of dread, anxiety and impending public humiliation that was my reality for a good seven years of my life.

Has your weight ever stopped you from being able to go to certain restaurants because you couldn't fit?  Do you look back to help yourself move forward?

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Tuesday, July 16, 2013

It's all about balance

Last night our workout was free weights.  It's one of those ones we do when we know we need to get in a strength session but don't feel like following something like P90x, Chalean Extreme or Supreme 90 Day.  Kind of like you need to just zone out a little.  I did quite a bit with resistance bands for the first half and then to mix it up a bit, I decided to grab the weights and stand on my balance board.

I do my balance board a few times a week (probably should do more) to keep up with my physical therapy for my foot injury.  I've seen people do upper body strength workouts using a balance board (affiliate link) or a BOSU Balance Trainer(affiliate link)  I tried a few different times in the past but wasn't able to do it continuously.  I was last night which was a pleasant surprise.  Of course it didn't come without a lot of leg/knee shaking at times when I was really trying to balance with 30 lbs of weight doing upper cuts or front raises.  But all in all I was proud at how well I did with it and will likely try to incorporate it more on strength days.

What do you do to shake up your strength routine?

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Monday, July 15, 2013

Eatin', meetin' and pink elephants

This was quite the busy weekend!

We spent Friday night cleaning.  I've given up the notion I/we will ever do anything but procrastinate until the last minute before the potential of company the following day.  The biggest gripe with living in a small space is it doesn't take much to clutter.  At some point, I'd reaaally like to go through closets, basement and garage and just get rid of a ton of well, shit is the only appropriate word for it all.

Saturday we headed to opening weekend of a farmer's market that is late to the game.  It sucks too because it's the best one but we got there too late so the people we go to were already out of their lettuce for the Mr.  They had one rogue batch of radishes I snapped up and we got 2 candy onions.  Must caramelize those.  There was a carnival in town and we thought getting fair food for lunch would satisfy that yearly craving for elephant ears and overpriced packaged hot dogs or fair fries.  I said for us to split a small fry and I'll be damned if they didn't hand the Mr a cup of fries dripping in scalding hot oil and then refused to give us a cup because it was too hot to carry around.  They tasted like crap anyway.  I took one bite and told him he could have the rest.  The whole handling of that situation just made me not want to eat them out of spite in addition to thinking they tasted like a spud fail.  He got a gyro and the meat was all overcooked.  Then I tried to get a small coney dog and it tasted like sloppy joes on top so I threw that away.  I tried again with a corn dog that only had flavor when there was mustard and ketchup in the bite.  The lemon shake up I do is MUCH better than the crap we got there.  CHUNKS of turbinado sugar that didn't melt at the bottom so I had to drink from the top with the straw so I wouldn't get nasty sugar grit burn when I tried to quench my summer thirst.  I was ready to scream.  I found the cheapest elephant ear guy (a must have once a year) and thankfully it was REALLY good.  Thank God one thing out of everything we tried was.  We dropped $45 for food that just plain sucked.  I'm sure the scale will thank me next week.  *rolling eyes*

We played with a little pup at the pet store to pass some time then headed home for a bit before going out to meet a friend.  I was hitting a wall and so was he so we took a 30 minute nap, got changed and met our friend downtown at one of our favorite new restaurants.  It was so good to see him and catch up.  We all split appetizers and a pizza.  I had half an arancini, 2-3 bites of a baked macaroni dish and 2 pieces of thin crust pizza.  Not bad I think especially compared to how much we've eaten when we've met people there before.  I jabbered on like it was the first time I'd ever spoken to human beings before.  He probably thought I was on cocaine or something.  Speaking of mind altering substances, you see a pink elephant strapped to the top of a truck too, right?

I swear I don't drink.  It pulled up beside us and I was cracking up laughing.

We went to an outdoor market and saw some friends of the Mr's with their clothing shop out so we bought some shirts off of them since he was kind enough to buy the first products we ever put out.  We also saw a drunk woman who fell and decided to lay in the street and laugh at herself almost get run over by the cab who just dropped her off.  Perhaps laying in the street is not the place to contemplate why you drank too much and yes, it is drafty because your dress is halfway up your chest...moron.

When we were done we walked around a historic little neighborhood and went into the bookshop for a little bit.  When we came out there were a bunch of Russians playing euchre at the neighboring coffee shop's outdoor tables screaming at each other.  Note: must learn to say "excuse me" in Russian.  Thankfully one yanked his friend out of my path so we could get through.  It was just kind of random especially since I've been hearing Russian for the past 2 nights listening to the Mr play Grand Theft Auto.

It felt like we'd crammed 3 days into one on Saturday!

Sunday was different.  We slept in a little.  I made breakfast, farted around a little bit, did Turbo Fire, ate lunch then headed off to some open houses of some places that we liked.  One was on this SUPER deep lot that looked like a park but I think there are just too many things we're not wowed by and things we can't change (like it's a one car garage with no room to make a 2 car garage because a HUGE tree is right behind it that would cost about three grand to remove and then it would be a "tandem" garage I think they call it where you'd have to park the cars one behind the other.  The bedrooms weren't a big wow and the living spaces are a little small but man it's like you look out onto the backyard and it's on 1/2 acre deep lot.  But then the neighbors didn't look like they kept up their home TOO much especially for the standard of the area so I think even though it's a great price and the sellers would likely give us time to list and sell our place since they're not in a hurry, we'll pass.  I don't want to move into a place just because the backyard and the basement are all it has going for it while the actual living spaces leave something to be desired.  Sigh.

We refueled our produce for the week and before we knew it, it was time to be home and make dinner and the day was gone and we didn't feel like we'd done much.  Weird.

What did you guys do this weekend?

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Friday, July 12, 2013

Fur baby Friday and what I'm reading this week

Last night was fun.  We got to meet our friends new puppy, a little Goldendoodle!  We bought a few toys and stuff for it but I also wanted to try my hand at making dog biscuits.  (Any reason to go to Sur La Table to get a dog bone shaped cookie cutter!)  So I found this recipe and got to it.  When I was done, I found these adorable dog tags and modified them a little to fit what I wanted to say on it and put a few in this mason jar.

I wish I could've found those teeny tiny dog bone cutters so I could've fit more than six 3" dog biscuits in there but I gave them the rest in a Ziploc bag so they could put them in the fridge or freezer.

and now on to...

Quick Bloating Cures  (Damn you BBQ!)

Aww!  (video)  (The Mr sent this to me.  Sometimes you don't need to know the language to understand love)

Man says one day of P90X sent him to the emergency room (Wow, really?  Keeping my mouth shut)

Henry Winkler ambassador for post stroke upper limb spasticity  (Interesting read!)

16 Ways to Have Fun for Free

Dustin Hoffman talks about how Tootsie changed his view toward aesthetically less attractive women  (video)  (Must see if you haven't already.  Start at about 1:30 in if you want to get to the point)

Six Ways to Enjoy a More Relaxed Daily Commute (This one's for the Mr...but you can look too. *grin*)

Biggest Loser contestant sued after gaining weight  (Interested to hear takes on this one)

Access into Panera's Hidden Menu

The Healthiest Sleep Position (Side sleepers represent, yo)

The ESPN Body Issue is here  (Wow!  These athletes are gorgeous!)

This weekend we're meeting a friend of ours we don't get to see too often so I'm looking forward to that.

What do you guys have on tap for the weekend?

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Thursday, July 11, 2013

Driven to distraction

When I workout, I really have to focus.  I mean...REALLY.  I have the attention span of a gnat and the second I let my mind wander from the task at hand, my workout suffers.  It can be something as simple as "don't forget to..." and I've missed a combo or "I can't wait to see so and so this weekend" and I'm completely thrown off.

Same goes for the atmosphere around me.  If the Mr is on one of his gonzo kicks where they'd hit the "lunkhead alarm" from all of the grunting, exhaling and extra movement that I can see in my peripheral and it can totally mess up my rhythm.  I wish I wasn't so easily distracted but I am...can't help it.  Sigh.

Are you easily distracted when you workout or do you zone out and could ignore just about anything around you?

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Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Latest movie reviews

We've been on quite the movie kick lately.

We were late on the scene renting the thriller "Mama."

I saw commercials for it but it was never a priority and slipped my mind.  Then when our friends were over she said her sister rented it and liked it so I decided to go for it since it didn't appear too over the top scary.  (I know, I'm a wuss in my old age)  Basically two girls are abandoned at a cabin in the woods and left there for years.  A dedicated family member who never stopped believing his brother's family was out there had a search team finally locate them.  They took the girls in but they didn't come alone.  (Cue creepy music)  The woman caretaker was SO annoying with her "I'm above it all" crap it made me want to flick her but I suppose it needed to be that way to make the ending effective.  "Mama" is actually played by a wicked thin creepy dude which only adds to the heebie jeebie factor kind of like Zelda in Pet Semetary.  ("Never get out of bed again!  Never get out of bed aga..."  Sorry)  There were a few of the typical jump scares and stuff but honestly nothing that made me cover my eyes, turn away or anything like that.  It was slightly less thrill than I expected out of a thriller.  The ending was weird but honestly something I cheered for and seemed to be the way it should've been...just try explaining that to authorities though.  If you like super scary movies, this isn't for you but if you like something a little more tame in the scare realm, you might just like Mama (affiliate link) .

We saw Despicable Me 2 and Monsters University and all I can really say is neither were as good as the original and I think if you don't have kids that are dying to see it, don't bother.

Now to last night's rental, Admission with Tina Fey and Paul Rudd.

I needed a comedy.  I thought with the comedic chops of these two that's what I was getting.  The script had other ideas.  I mean there are some funny parts but there are a lot of deeper subjects involved from adoption to single parenthood to people putting their big fat noses in where they don't belong even if well intentioned. I expected more but I'll say that the Mr liked it.  I think my opinion of the movie may be swayed over what I thought I was going to get compared to what I got.  If you go in knowing it's not all gonna be yuk yuks then you might like it more than I did.  I wouldn't turn people away from Admission but just know it's a dramedy over a full on comedy.  Lily Tomlin was awesome.  (affiliate link) 

What movies have you seen lately?  

This post contains a few Amazon affiliate links.  If you buy through them, I'll get a couple cents back.

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Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Small victories

First off, let me thank everyone who responded to yesterday's post.  I don't like that I'm down here with company but hopefully we can all help each other find our way out!

The Mr has Mondays off for the summer so we went back to the zoo.  I decided not to take the camera just because I didn't want to worry about it and of course we saw all kinds of picture worthy stuff.  The Mr said if I had it then we probably wouldn't have seen those things because it's like a Murphy's law kind of thing.  But I suppose I probably wouldn't have wanted to stare at a pic of a gargantuan elephant penis from a pachyderm taking a pee and a dump at the same time.  Mmm hmm.  It was so humid and gross with the occasional breeze.  I packed us a lunch to eat just before we went in.  A turkey sandwich for us both and carrots, a peach and plum for him and apple and grapes for me.  For snacks I brought him a 100 calorie pack of almonds and me a mini box of raisins in case we got that low blood sugar thing like we did last time.  Last time we had ice cream, cotton candy and animal crackers.  We were overheating big time and the lukewarm water in the fountains wasn't cutting it.  This time the worst thing we cooled off with was a small cherry Icee that we split and I was proud of us.  Maybe this seems like a failure to some but given we passed funnel cakes, big soft pretzels, ice cream, pizza, burgers and everything else you can think of...this was a victory.

Another victory?  The Mr's Sea-Band worked!  (affiliate link) For those who remember our last attempt at carnival rides a few weeks ago, you know the Mr was not doing so hot.  He ordered Sea-Bands (affiliate link) to see if the acupressure point would work and it did!  We went on the Scrambler, which he got green on before and he was fine.  Then it was on to the dreaded Tilt a Whirl.

We were across from a little girl who was about 10 in a pod by herself and she said she wanted to go fast and the Mr told her to lean her head back and it would make her spin fast.  She was all over that.  As we got moving, we were spinning a little then I saw him lean into it to make us spin like mad.  Oh well thanks!  I had to close my eyes a few times but was laughing too.  I kept asking if he was okay and he said he was fine.  When we got off, the lady who ran the ride asked if *I* was okay!  She must've only seen me when I had my eyes closed.  I was fine once I left the ride area but the Mr was great and declared himself ready to tackle the big parks when we're able.  That's a good thing...I think.

I burned 900 calories which was decent even though my hips felt like they were going to fall off.  The other night we went to Whole Foods to pick up some Hain Baking Powder (affiliate link)  since mine is pretty expired.  We flipped the can over and the "best by" date was in 3 weeks!!  Uh, hello!?  When we asked if they had any more in the back that wasn't on the verge of being past it's prime, the guy was all "you'll just have to bake all of your muffins, cakes and cookies in the next couple of weeks!", I won't.  See ya.  I was grateful to see on our way home from the day with the animals, a health food store I remembered actually had it and it's good until December!  Salt and gluten free Hain baking powder to last me through the Fall/early winter baking season!  It was a day of small victories.

What are your small victories?

This post contains a few Amazon affiliate links.  Should you buy through them, I'll get a few cents back.  Maybe enough to make one of those souvenir penny's from the zoo the next time I go!  Ooooh!

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Monday, July 8, 2013

Down the rabbit hole

I swear I feel like I'm falling...

I don't know if this is a funk, the beginning of the end (I hope not...I really don't want to see 500 lbs just for shits and giggles) or a passing speed bump that the department of transportation just made REEEEALLY steep but I'm being tested and failing.  (Not miserably but more than my comfort zone)

I feel old habits trying to get a foot hold.  I feel numb to the whole thing.  I feel like I really don't give a shit right now so how could I expect you to.  I can barely inspire myself so I feel like I can't possibly inspire you.I guess at least I'm still exercising?

This is it folks.  The whole weight loss "journey" (barf) isn't always pretty and not always rainbows shooting out of your butt.  Sometimes it's you trying to claw your way out of a binge day that you have no friggin' idea why you felt justified having.  Sometimes it's you hearing old excuses popping up in your head and letting them slip out of your face to see if they fly and don't bat an eye when they do.  Sometimes it's popping in an old tape of you at 390 pounds hoping to get some kind of emotion out of yourself and you feel nothing.'s scary.

How do you get out of this mindset if you've ever been in it?

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Friday, July 5, 2013

You should be off today

It's Friday and I'm assuming many of you took today off to make it a nice long weekend?  ;-)  If not, my condolences and might I suggest that you feel a "tickle" in your throat and you should probably call in to lay down.  *double wink*

If you happen to be stuck at work today, I'll give you some food pics and some reading material because I love ya's!  

Monday was leftover baked beans and orange roughy.  Calories 334

Tuesday was a mahi burger on a light wheat bun with bbq sauce and a side of brussels with asiago cheese.  Calories: 410

Wednesday was that amazing pizza I told you about yesterday with a side of brussels and cheese (not pictured).  Calories: 750

Thursday we had to grill out of course on the Fourth of July so I did some bbq chicken breast and 2 sweet corn with a 1/2 tbsp chipotle butter.  Calories:  492

Since I forgot to do this last week, here's some reading material of stuff that I've perused over the past 2 weeks.  You deserve a break!

Stacy Keibler's Head to Toe Bikini Workout  (video-starts when you open page so mute it)

Four Ways to Make Your Workout More Fun

How Chronic Stress Can Affect Your Physical Appearance

Stop the Burn  (How to Treat Sunburns)

Grilling with The Post

Designers Embrace Plus Size Market (Video- starts right away)

Vintage Recipe Cards Inspire Unlikely Friendship (*MY FAVORITE!*)

How to Preserve Everything You Own

Apple Health Info:  Crazy Facts About the Fruit

Defeat Poison Ivy with Tea Tree Oil

Six Most Dangerous Workout Moves

That's about it y'all!  We're taking this weekend to plan absolutely nothing though I must admit I'm getting the itch to look at antique malls.  (Mr runs and hides)  Grocery trip planned along with a farmers market and being active in between pop up rain clouds.  Other than that, maybe a movie marathon at nights.

Any plans for the weekend?  Did you have today off?

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Thursday, July 4, 2013

That's-ah one huge-ah vat of sauce-ah!

First things first...

I hope everyone has a great holiday if you're celebrating.  Don't forget to keep the doggies locked up inside and maybe play some soothing music to help them through all of the extra noise!  

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Pros and cons

The Mr was kind enough to telework today so I wouldn't have to deal with the garage man alone.  This meant we could watch Dexter earlier than we planned.  For a few months I had these Wilton Meat Cleaver Royal Icing Decorations (affiliate link)  to usher in the last season of our favorite show.  I have these wimpy Trader Joe break and bake cookies so I baked up one each for us and then got a red Wilton melt to put on right out of the oven and when they melted, STAB!  Just like the Dark Passenger!

I know, we're weirdos but I don't care, I think they're cute especially for Dexter fans.  I almost pooped myself the last 10 minutes of that episode!

For our workout, I wanted to get outside even though it was raining.  I knew the park I wanted to go to had an abundance of tree cover and we wouldn't get wet unless it was torrential and even then we packed up the backpack with ponchos.  We had our water, bug spray and such.  This woman passed us and smiled and as she walked ahead of us, I couldn't help but take a blurry pic as we were both moving.  She had the most perfect legs I've ever seen.  She was probably 10 years older than me but her legs were fit, not a vein in sight, tanned and smooth as silk.  I wanted to scream "I hope you appreciate your legs because not to sound weird but I do!"

We walked about 4 miles and I was a little annoyed at the calorie burn.  It wasn't chump change but hell I remember when a walk that long and hilly would warrant about 1000 calories.  The pros and cons of weight loss I guess.  The more fit you get, the harder you have to work.  I was a sweaty wench.  Then as we were leaving, this dog was staring me down and I waved at it and it went batshit and started barking at me and pawing at the window.  Keep peacocking little death by Boston Terrier for me, thanks.

We did see quite a bit of animal friends while we were out and about.  So that made for a nice distraction from time to time.

I love rainy walks because it keeps people at home for the most part.  No one wants to get wet but I love it. I love hearing the wind rustling in the treetops and the rain hitting the leaves over our heads.  It's so relaxing.  Of course then it makes the air a little more humid and by the time you're in mile three and want it to be over, you're a little "moist" around the face and neck.  Grody.  I guess like with everything...pros and cons.

Then we came home, ate dinner and watched The Terminator .  (affiliate link) Man, Michael Biehn was a hottie.  I know he looks a hardened now but to me, he'll always be Kyle Reese, my first man crush.

Image via
I'll take one biscuit in which to sop him up please!  Me-ow.

Oh yeah, Happy Birthday to my other childhood man crush, retired pro-wrestler Bret Hart.

Image via
I had this magazine in high school...I still have it...I may or may not have licked it.  (Then, not now)

Do you like rainy walks?  What animals do you usually encounter?  Who was your first on screen man crush from childhood?

This post contains a few Amazon affiliate links.  I'll try not to spend the dime kickback all in one place should you decide to buy from them.  ;)

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