Sunday, December 30, 2007

Game on!

so I got the BodyBugg activated yesterday. AFTER I'd eaten probably a full day's worth of tamales, leftover Christmas cookies and See's candy. And after I ran 4 miles at the gym yesterday morning. So we're counting today as the starting point. The game of moving my body to burn 1000 more calories a day than I take in is officially on.

There is no mystery to weight loss -- there is only burning more than you eat. That's not to say that it's easy, because if it was, we wouldn't be a nation of overweight people, with a billion-dollar industry tied to weight loss. But the challenge has always been making sure you're burning what you think you're burning. And knowing exactly what you're eating. So for me, there will be no more mystery. I will need to be meticulous with the logging of the food, but the interface of the online tracking is pretty user-friendly (or it is now that I've installed the IE add-in to my Firefox browser). And I can custom-add any food that I need to. And I'm going to be brutally honest. That's the only way this will work. If I eat that piece of candy, or hit the snack machine at the office, then I will have to pay for that candy with a trip up the stairs or a walk around the block. And I know that I will eat that piece of candy. And I will hit the snack machine, because that's how I roll. But now, there is a concrete cost connected to it that I will have to pay. Simple as that. I think once I start to see results I'll be more motivated to keep it up, and I'll be more motivated to make those decisions. But I'm not going to tackle that all at once.

This is what the interface looks like, with my real data for today so far:

I like the graphs at the bottom -- I can mouse over them and it gives me a count of the calories burned per minute during that time. The spikes at the bottom were from cleaning the kitchen this morning. I've not done anything really out of the ordinary so far, so it will be interesting to see how this afternoon's run shows up on the graphs. And what a leisurely stroll around the park looks like, too. Wonder how much I can burn by taking down the tree later? I still have a lot of learning to do about the different views, and the more data I have, the more info it will give me. And I will share here as much as I can. The accountability is good for me.

So game on. Should be a good one, with hopefully me as the big loser AND winner. Happy Sunday!

Friday, December 28, 2007

'cause I got nothing

to post, you get to see the annual post-Christmas rundown of what Santa and assorted family members gave me for Christmas. Yet again, I asked for and received gifts that will help me get this arse in race-ready condition. Things that make me excited to work out. And, like usual, the folks delivered. In no particular order:

Timex Ironman iControl
Yes, it's orange. Natch. And it is that bright and vivid on my arm. LOVE IT!! Still haven't connected the iPod to it, since that means I can't use the Nike+ foot pod with it at the same time. Not that I can currently find the Nike+ foot pod anyway.... Never mind. The iPod is out of juice and I didn't bring the charger cable with me this trip. No worries -- we'll test drive the iControl part this weekend. When I hit the gym and get this activated:

It's a BodyBugg, and yes, I probably could accomplish the same weight loss without it, if I was a little more conscientious about what I put in my mouth and made sure I got all the workouts in. Probably. But I haven't made much headway without it so far, have I? So I thought it was worth a shot. And that's what Christmas is for, in our house, at least, to splurge on each other on the things that we wouldn't necessarily get for ourselves on a normal day. So once I get this thing activated and running, look forward to hearing more about it and the related results. I'm all about the gadget and feedback and "playing the game" to hit the numbers. So I'm optimistic.

Of course, if I'm going to burn more calories, I need some kickin' gear to do it in, right? Which is where my gift card to NikeTown will come in handy. Time to stock up on the 10/2 collection, methinks.

What else? got a couple of dress skirts for work, a kickin' pair of boots for work (perfect for these freakin' cold NYC mornings) and some sweaters for work. All very cool and very appreciated, but not as fun as the gadgets above.

Of course, the Garmin is still dead and I'd been holding off on getting a new GPS unit until Christmas. Now I'm in the market for one and will have to wait for a good sale (and the next bonus cycle). Maybe I'll be able to hold out for Mother's Day, but probably not since I have a couple of races between now and then. We shall see, we shall see. It's rather ungracious to yelp about what you didn't get under the tree, no? Especially when the haul was generous and awesome. So, um, disregard this last paragraph, m'kay?

It's get-away day today, so I should get to moving so I can head out of here and hit the office. The sooner to hit the road afterward. Peace out, and have a great weekend!

Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Merry Christmas!

Christmas_Eve 014, originally uploaded by ccervant_99.

From our Family to Yours.

Hope you've had as great (or better) time these last few days as we have. I've had a good opportunity to slow down and enjoy my boys (all three of them) and recharge the batteries, as it were. And having two kitties around makes it extra fun, too!

Monday, December 24, 2007

Here She is!

As promised, the new kitten at Casa de Skatemom!

Her little nose is scabbed up because she tried to nose her way out of a crate last week, according to the lady from the shelter. Seven weeks old and itty bitty, especially compared to Princess Summer Blossom.

Speaking of which, we have new photo of the existing royalty, just for good measure and to be sure that there is no animosity between the new and the established:

And, because it is Christmas Eve, you get this, too:

We won't talk about how just minutes before this, on the way into the workshop, Elder Child had told me that he was willing to STAND next to Santa, but was not in any way going to get in his lap. By the end of the conversation (which was pretty lengthy, based on the fidgeting of the next kids in line) he was the one smiling and laughing more than the little one. That one just was serious as a heart attack throughout the whole encounter. In a while I'll scan the photo from the official photographer that was quite excellent, but for now, this gives you a good idea of the day. He's twelve now, and I have a sad suspicion that this may be the last good Santa photo I get of him.

Gotta run -- I'm actually on the clock some today, so I must switch over to the other computer and log some decent hours here in a while. Have a wonderful day and I will be posting later tonight and/or tomorrow.

Saturday, December 22, 2007

oops, we did it again!

so, yeah. About six months ago or so, we brought a new member of our family home. She's awesome and nutso and everything a cat should be. 'cept she was a little lonely. Or maybe we decided having a kitten in the house was so much fun we had to do it all over again. And we really had wanted to get two at the time we adopted Her Royal Highness, Queen-in-Training, Supreme Diva of the House Princess Summer Blossom. But we didn't, because PSB was the right cat at the time, and none others at the shelter seemed right.

But today, we were burning time waiting to see National Treasure II, doing a little last-minute shopping. We needed cat litter and a kitty stocking full of treats for PSB, so we stopped at the pet store. Where they were having adoptions from a local shelter. And they had two little baby kittens. A couple of older cats, too. We walked in and saw the most adorable gray kitten with little white legs and a little white-patched face. Tiny and sweet. Almost in unison, the boys turned and looked at us and said, "We need another cat." Not "Can we have another cat?" or "What would it be like if we had another kitten?" But "We NEED another cat." And Hub and I looked at each other and thought about it, then quickly decided we needed to leave the pet store. Right away. Like, immediate-like. We headed down the strip mall to Marshall's and picked up a few things and pondered the possibility.

On the way back to the car, we stopped at the pet store again. We really did need kitty litter. Turned out we needed a new litter box, a new bowl, new toys and new baby cat food (even smaller than kitten food PSB still eats). Why did we need all this? Because the dang cat was still there. Still cute as a button. Cuter. The other one, her brother, was spoken for, but she was still available and still in NEED of a new home. Kinda like we were in NEED of a new kitten. Sigh. "We'll take her."

Her name is Soxie. As in "Roxie." Pretty sure we'll call her Two-Socks. Or just Socks. The introduction through the door is uneventful so far. It'll be a few days before they meet face-to-face for any amount of time. Photos to follow. Gotta run.

Thursday, December 20, 2007

Even after the tequila...

I ran. Told you I had new motivation. I only did 2.5 miles, but still.

See, what happened last night is that our team went out for dinner. In TriBeCa. At some little Spanish tapas bar. With a flamenco dancer (who was amazing, BTW).

And at some point over the night (which wasn't a very long night, either -- I was at the apt asleep before the second episode of SATC was over), my project manager had convinced me to have a tequila shot. And I may have had a few sips of the white sangria. Not too many, because prior to this, the last time I had anything stronger than diet green tea was when we had dinner club and someone (who shall remain nameless but knows dang well who she is... ahem, DENISE!) made peach bellinis which knocked me on my ass after just a few sips and directly caused me to skip my run the next morning. Seriously, honestly, I maybe have had alcohol on about three occasions in the last five years. But every ten years or so, I do enjoy a little bit (a very little bit) of good tequila. Not the cheap border bar tequila we used to drink in college, but good smooth tequila. So it wasn't too tough to convince me to have a shot. And I'd had enough water during dinner that after the initial "I can't feel the bottom half of my face" sensation you get with a tequila shot wore off I was fine. Fine enough to get off my as$ this morning and hit the treadmill in the sad little excuse for a gym in my building. So, go me.

Gotta go -- I'm a bit wiped out tonight. We managed to escape the office at a reasonable hour so I went all tourista with a friend of mine and we hit a few little shops near Times Square for some last-minute NYC Christmas shopping. The best find of the night was easily a Pirates of the Caribbean statue with two little M&M guys being attacked by a squid. This is such a perfect confluence of things for TDP DinoBoy, you cannot even imagine. And it was half-price, so score! Peace out -- got to be rested for the last haul before a nice 4-day weekend.

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

She's ALIVE!

She's baaack! in case you hadn't heard... the original source of all random linkage is back in the, um, groove, as it were. Go by and give her some comment love, then thump her on the head for being gone for so long. Now that she's back, can the Platy be far behind??
(This probably means NOTHING to anyone from my real life or my running/tri group folks -- only the original bloggy friends will fully appreciate the webby wackiness that is the Batgrl)

Not much else going on, except that I'm in the midst of reading Ultramarathon Man and have a renewed sense of motivation. I also have a clear plan for the running that gets me through April, where we will switch focus to triathlon and that swim thang for the summer. Stay tuned for details.

That is all.

Friday, December 14, 2007

*This* is a vacation?

What's been keeping me busy on my week home from the project:
  • finishing nine loads of laundry, not counting the kitchen mats and curtains (see below)
  • completed two 50-minute gym workouts with my trainer -- would have been three, but the girly is graduating from college tomorrow, so she's not in
  • three sessions with a sports massage therapist/chiro for my cranky shin/knee (in Dallas, no less!)
  • podiatrist appointment and follow-up scan for Elder Child's left foot
  • cleaning out the closets in the kids' rooms
  • re-arranging the living room to make room for the tree
  • setting up and decorating the Christmas tree (with some help!)
  • painting the kitchen (just finished today!)
  • creating, ordering and addressing/stuffing the Christmas cards -- waiting for postage and they're outta here
  • completing Christmas shopping for pretty much everyone but Hub
  • making dinner (!) once or twice this week -- without using the microwave!!
  • washing the curtains in the kitchen, bedrooms and den
  • dropping off and picking up the boys from school every day
  • attending 1 scout meeting (2 in about half an hour), 2 hockey practices and a band concert
  • having lunch with three friends from my old job yesterday in Dallas
Sigh. I'm *almost* ready to go back to work now!! Nope, I take that back!

Sunday, December 09, 2007

Greetings from Wichita Falls,TX

not from the start line of the White Rock Marathon. This is the first Rock I'm sitting out since I started this little side venture and it feels very weird to not be approaching the Turtle Creek western-themed waterstop manned by Luke's Locker right now. Instead, I'm sitting in a Comfort Inn in Wichita Falls, preparing for a hockey tournament in a bit. BTW, call me spoiled by the Marriott and/or a corporate apartment, but this particular Comfort Inn is lacking a bit in the "comfort" area, if you get my drift. But, I do have to say that with the weather that rolled in last night of cold and wet (high in the lower 50s, expecting to drop throughout the morning, coupled with drizzle, rain and thunderstorms) that I'm a little glad to not be toeing the line today.

We did go to the Marathon Expo yesterday, where I spent at least an hour and a little more $$, trying to motivate myself to get back into the marathon groove. I did pick up a couple of Bondi bands, which I have been wearing pretty much nonstop since then. One is in my signature cornflower yellow, with "26.2" across the front, which will be henceforth part of my standard training attire. The other is in the second most perfect color evah, burnt orange, with "I'd Rather Be Running" stamped on it - this will be my "off-track" standard, if you will. Just a couple of reminders of what I am and what I need to focus on in the next few months.

I also picked up a 2008 race calendar, so I need to scan through it and pick another spring race (after Austin), probably in April, and an early fall race. I also picked up some tri-related brochures, with info on training camps and swimming camps. Gotta get back into that groove as well.

The other thing I did was get my gait analyzed, at least superficially. I do this weird pull-back thing with my left arm that twists my upper body withe every stride, and I have a definite Frankenstein-monster-ish thud on the right side when I step down. Even with fresh legs, I have a full mid-foot plant, which was plainly obvious, and I know that as soon as I get any amount of tired I start flat-footing it bigtime. I could see very clearly once they pulled it up on the video screen what all the problems with my stride are (and we're not even talking about the monster thigh issues at this point, but that's another post entirely... sigh) and why I have so much trouble with my lower back aching. So I'm going into the sports chiro place on Tuesday to have a more thorough look-see. I've been meaning to find another place with a more sports performance-oriented focus, but just haven't found the time, so this was a perfect opportunity. so even though I'm not running today (and hopefully passing the 10K mark by about right now...), I still got a lot out of the expo. I had to find things to motivate me there, to get me back on track, because my initial feelings when we walked in were those of great sadness and regret that I wasn't, that I'm not, ready to run a full marathon right now. But that time will come again, in February, and I'm not letting it fall away from me again.

So, there. Gotta go -- we're doing the sweep of the room and checking out to head to the rink.
Later, and good luck to all the WR'ers.

Monday, December 03, 2007

Mama, it's COLD outside!!

brrrr. wasn't so bad when I landed this morning (we left on time and landed early -- first time EVAH!! at LGA), but in the time I was in the office, it got very cold. And windy. Like rattling the windows windy. And cold. Did I mention that? I had my long wool coat -- the one with missing buttons that I didn't notice were missing because I NEVER wear it in Texas. Because it's never cold enough to wear anything more than a sweatshirt and jeans. Or if it's really cold, a hooded sweatshirt. Seriously. I lived the whole winter last year living in long-sleeved tees and gap sweatpants. So to have to wear a long wool coat and still be cold? Brrr.

In other news, we have Turkey Trot photos, but they are horrendous and shall not be shared here, mostly because they highlight the worst feature on my body, namely the stomach that ate Brooklyn. Sigh. I SWORE up and down when I started this job and this travel that it wouldn't affect my workouts, but sadly, it *has* affected the regularity with which I actually work out, and the quality of my workouts, and thusly, the size of my waistband. Deep sigh. And my speed is the same as it was last year, roughly, but yet I'm heavier (only about three pounds from this time last year, but still, I'm squishier). So it makes me wonder how much faster I would be if I could really finally lose this weight. Really. Finally. Lose. the Weight.

Too much to consider right now. I just have a new motivation to eat properly and keep to the schedule. As has been the case the last few years, I know what needs to be done, I just need to actually make it happen. I'm the "Queen of Making it Happen" in my professional world, and take great pride in being so. I just need to transfer that "git 'er done" to my nutrition and training. To myself. Because I deserve it just as much as any project that I'm working on, or anything else in my life.

So, there. Scintillating, I know. But, as to not leave you thinking that I'm sad and mopey about my weight (I'm not -- I know what needs to happen and why it's not, and I know what I need to do about it), I leave you with this:

Gotta go, so I can wake up and hit the TM upstairs before work tomorrow. Laters!