Sunday, July 15, 2012


I'm a pretender. I admit it.

I'm not a runner. I haven't really enjoyed running since I was on the track team in Junior High. I'm now in the pretending stage. I make myself get out and run now. I like being active and I consistently do exercise videos. I've even joined a gym a few times in my life (usually cancel due to cost more than use), but running was never my first love. I'd rather lace up my ice skates and play a hockey game than lace up running shoes.

However, over the last few years, I have completed 1 marathon and 3 half-marathons. I am training for another half coming up in September. I have finally come around to not dreading my running, but I can't say that I love it, yet. I do like what it does for my body, though.

I guess, Fake it til you make it rings true once again. I'm hoping that I will soon be able to say I enjoy running - then onto maybe 'love it'.

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Things I am not good at

I am having a hard time believing it's March already. Where in the world did February go? My plan was to write at least once a month. So far, that hasn't happened. Maybe I can make up for it during the month of March. So, to start this month, I decided to use a writing prompt from Monday Listicles even though it's Wednesday.

Here goes:
Top Things I'm Not Good At

1) Completing projects. This is probably the thing I am the worst at. I like to start projects (sewing, crafts, remodels, etc), but I have a hard time finishing them. I think I like the process more than the finality of it all.

2) Keeping the house clean and tidy. I'm a slob. I admit it. I think I have hoarding tendencies too, which makes it quite hard to keep up on the daily little things that wind up being big things later.

3) Sharing ideas. I edit my thoughts continuously, so sharing what I think can bit a laborious. I will think I have a great idea, then I'll rethink it, edit it and then usually discard it. If I have the same (or similar) idea return more than once, I'll take that as a sign that I should go ahead and share. It's a very long, complicated process. (hopefully, trying to keep up on this blog will help that ;-))

4) Saying "No". I have a house full of items that I don't particularly want or need because of this. I also have the waistline to prove it.

5) Hand-eye coordination. This is a terrible thing to not have control of. It makes so many things very difficult. I like sports and participating in them. I however am not all that great at any of them because I have a very hard time matching what is happening with what I am supposed to be doing. (I also don't do anything the same way twice; holding a pencil, wielding a knife, shooting a puck, etc)

6) Listening. I always used to think I was a good listener, but then I realized that I am not. I can hear what you are saying, but will often be thinking of something else while you are talking or thinking of a comeback to say when there is a break.

7) Being on time. I like being on time. I just rarely am. I don't think I am more important than you, I have simply discovered that what happens in my head is not necessarily what happens in real time. I always have a plan and a specified time to leave so I make it on time, but for some reason I can lose 10 minutes from the door to the car.

8) Cooking without a recipe. As I mentioned before I rarely do the same thing twice, so I find it very difficult to cook without a recipe. I want the time I put into cooking to pay off and be delicious which makes recipes so very important to me which makes me a slave to my cookbooks and recipe files.

9) Making decisions. I don't ever want to be wrong, so if I don't make the decision then I cannot be blamed for it not going well.

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

New Year's Resolutions?...

Wow! I can't believe how long it's been since I last posted anything. I guess it's like almost all things I do. I start off good, get busy or lose interest not really sure which, get excited again, then get busy... It's a vicious cycle. But, I plan to change this a bit this year. I've decided to set a challenge, New Year's Resolution, a goal (whatever you want to call it) and post something at least once a month. (I was going to pick once a week, but decided that was a bit too challenging). 

Hopefully, I will decide I can find the time to manage at least one post a month if not more. I was hoping to be able to start this challenge on 1 January 2012, but 'life' got in the way of my best intentions (I hate that). What makes this blogging thing so challenging for me is I still am not quite sure what I want to blog about. I have many interests, lots of opinions, and a great deal of  responsibilities. Where do I start? How much do you want to know? How detailed should I be? Which of my interests will keep you reading? Does any of this even matter? What is the real purpose for writing this blog? It might just be the technology associated with journaling without pen and paper, yet I've never been very good about that. Maybe these are questions I should have asked myself before creating this blog, but I don't think I gave it that much thought. I just wanted to get started.

I've just decided that whatever my intentions were when I began, they don't really matter because as I change, grow and discover more about myself my blog will also (hopefully) change, grow and help express my discoveries.

So, here's to New Year's Resolutions (goals, in my book) and happy blogging...

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

We are the Champions...

Go Blue! (sound We Are the Champions by Queen)

At the beginning of Septemeber I joined a fall ice hockey league for a few reasons.

  1. A friend of mine joined (always nice)
  2. I wanted to get ready for the upcoming regular hockey season and 
  3. I wanted to have some fun.

I was a member of the Blue team. They were a great group of women. Very personable and friendly (my friend ended up on a different team.) They were also very supporative.

I had a lot of fun and we ended up winning the league Championship. We played well together and ended the season undefeated. Awesome!

I drafted this post back in October 2011, but never posted it. My regular hockey season is not going quite as well as my preseason did. I am still having fun and enjoy my time on the ice, however, it's amazing what a winning team does for a mood booster.

Monday, October 17, 2011

Last Friday Night...

No, I didn't have quite the same experience that Katy Perry sings about in her song by the same title. But it was a pretty darn good night.

Friday night, my dear husband (DH) and I went to the movies. That is a VERY rare occurance for us. We don't normally venture farther than our living room couch on a Friday night, so it was quite exciting. We saw Friends with Benefits, starring Justin Timberlake and Mila Kunis. I wouldn't say with was a cinematic masterpiece, but I did find it enjoyable.

The plot was pretty predictable, as is usually the case in romantic comedies. I laughed quite a bit and it ended sweetly. This movie reminded me of No Strings Attached with Ashton Kutcher and Natalie Portman. The plot was very similar. The main characters are emotionally unavailable (or messed up, however you want to think about it) and they get together for sex only. Nothing is supposed to materialize from the sex. No falling in love, no boyfriend/girlfriend relationship, just sex.

In Friends with Benefits, the main characters become best friends and have a hard time dealing with life after a falling out. They soon decide that they need each other and their friendship in order to cope with their life stressors (namely their parents.) We laughed throughout the movie and left the theatre feel good (all smiles.)  The movie left DH a bit uncomforatable at times (it was pretty 'graphic' for a less than X rating.) Sometimes I wonder if screenplay writers try to find ways to insert as many swear words as  possible into a single movie. I don't think that normal people swear as much as they do in movies.  I guess, there were quite a few drawbacks to this movie, but I liked it anyway.

After the movie we went to a nearby restaurant. I wasn't in the mood to eat since I had polished off a large pop and popcorn (love popcorn and it's even better at the movies.) So, we each had a margarita and some chips and salsa. I didn't care much for mine, but after I added some extra salt it was all good. It was a great date night.

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Surpeme 90 Day

This past summer I found this great workout system and I decided I was going to try it out. You know, follow the whole program, well, except for the diet part.

In my slightly excercise obsessed mind I figured it wouldn't be too tough. I could handle it. I've been working out consistenly for years now and this would be a piece of cake. I had heard good reviews of the system, but I didn't actually know any of the people who told me it was good. They could have been fairly new to exercise, so it would absolutely seem challenging them. Then again, they could be serious exercisers who are in perfect condition - I am still floor by those who tell me certain programs that kick my butt are waay too easy for them. Wow! is my only thought.

Anyway, I pick up this program and think, "Hey, it's only about 30 minutes long. I can do that before my run on Saturday." Sure. Not a problem, easy as pie, right? Not really.

The first progam in the system is titled Chest and Back. Do you know what that means? It means pushups. Now, I understand that pushups are super good for you and altering your appearance, but holy smokes, tough. I had to do them from my knees. And 30 minutes? Not really more like 40 (with warm-up and cool-down/stretch). But, I perservered. Day 1 - done. It felt good and I got my training run in before everyone else (read husband, not children) woke for the day.

Day 2 - Total Core. Ouch! This workout was tough. I, again, thought that it wouldn't be too hard. I'd done my fair share of Pilates, planks and crunches over the past few months. So again my slightly exercise obsessed mind thought that this probably wouldn't challenge me much. Wow, so wrong. For nearly 30 minutes I worked every bit of my midsection using a stability ball. I could feel my body working, but wasn't feeling real sore after. So, naturally, I thought I wouldn't be too sore the next day. Again, wrong. Definitely sore.

Day 3 - Rest Day. Gotta love those right? So, I just did my training run.

Day 4 - Tabata Inferno. If you haven't heard of Tabata Training or haven't tried it- it's basically a series of 2-4 exercises that you do in succession in a 20-10 format with a 1 minute rest between sets. Example: Squat Jumps to Mountain Climbers, progression is like this - Do Squat Jumps for 20 seconds, Rest for 10 seconds, then Mountain Climbers for 20 seconds, Rest for 10 seconds. Do that 8 times for a total of 4 minutes.  Rest 1 minute. Then you get another series of moves. If you have four exercises then the progession is twice through for a total of 4 minutes. Rest 1 minute. This workout is tough. It challenges and pushes. It makes you sweat. You want to give up and call it quits, but you don't because you know that soon enough you will get a rest. It's awesome. This is the longest workout in the series coming in at just about 50 minutes. It's an excellent way to challenge yourself and your aerobic capacity.

You get the picture. I am not going to go through each and every workout - there were 10 different programs on 10 discs. The main point here is that I did follow the 'Success Chart' and was able to shed 10 pounds from my frame (even without following the eating plan). I also felt stronger and more in control, which made me a bit more confident, which in turn encouraged me to try some other exercise programs and continue with my 1/2 marathon training.

The most amazing thing? I decided to try the program again. So, I started this program a couple of days ago and I think it's harder the second time around. I am definitely feeling muscles I haven't felt in a while. May have something to do with that confidence thing, using heavier weights and knowing that I kicked the programs butt once before.

Go Me!

Friday, October 14, 2011

Cathe Friedrich's Pure Strength series DVD

Cathe's Pure Strength
A few weeks ago I came across Cathe Friedrich's Pure Strength DVD. I got a bit excited and decided I would try it out.

Wow! What a workout. Now, I had done her MesoCycle 1 Endurance a few weeks before (meaning I did all 12 DVDs (3x per week for 4 weeks) and had finished the cycle a few weeks prior to finding Pure Strength.) I must admit that I really liked the Pure Strength series. I liked it better than MesoCycle 1. I haven't quite figured out why, but I did. So much so, that I continue to do the Pure Strength series.

The Pure Strength DVD consists of all three of the Pure Strength VHS workouts - Strong Legs & Abs, Chest, Shoulders & Triceps and Back, Biceps and Abs.

The format of the workout is very similar to MesoCycle 1. You do each of the workouts 1x per week. You use heavy weights to build strength and lighter weights to build muscle endurance. None of the workouts are very fast paced so you don't really raise your heart rate, but Lower Body does raise it a bit due to using those large muscle groups.

Strong Legs & Abs is a series of squats and lunges but she also incorporates the high step and lying floor work. My favorite is the high step step-ups. They really work the quadricep muscles and glutes. I also really like the floor work with the body bar. It's perfect for the those inner and outer thighs (and I'm all for anything that will help reduce the size of my saddlebags.) This workout lasts about 70 minutes because you end with an AB-soultely amazing ab routine right after doing a  series of bridge lifts with your feet on a low step.

Chest, Shoulders and Triceps works the chest with a series of pushups, chest flys and chest presses then moves onto the shoulders with moves like the Arnold press and side lateral raises. You finish the workout fatiguing the triceps with moves like tricep dips and cross-body kickbacks. Super tough and you're finished in 40 minutes. No ab work in this program, but they need a day off after the tough sequence in Strong Legs & Abs.

Back, Biceps & Abs uses very heavy weights and you start with working the back muscles. I especially like the T-bar and bent over rows. Then she moves you through a very tough sequence of bicep building moves. Not only do you do regular bicep curls with a heavy barbell, you also do seated concentration curls and negative curls. After completely fatiguing your biceps you are in for a real treat with the super intense abdominal exercises.

I have come to realize why I like the Pure Strength series of workouts better (so far) than the MesoCycle (particularly vol 1) workouts. First Pure Strength has a shorter time duration. Second, I really like the ab routines. Third, I have really enjoyed the sequencing of the exercises. And, fourth, you don't need nearly as much room or equipment and get just as good if not (in my opinion) better workout (and a whole lot easier on the wallet.)