Monday, May 28, 2012

I know, I know...

A year is way too long not to post. Not sure what happened there. Maybe life just got in the way. Anyway, I'm going to try to post here more often, especially when it comes to fitness and health. My other blog (novel-related) can handle the literary side of my life.

This morning, I did a short run, about 4.5 miles around the neighborhood and part of the Suncoast Trail. I am going to run more often (note, I didn't say "try to"). With my gym membership expiring a few months back, and that has to be for a reason, I feel like I had neglected my running. So, this is my way of getting back into things.


Friday, April 22, 2011

I'm Baaaaaaack.

Okay, so after a few months of no posting for a multitude of reasons, I am back because I have some good news. I am not diabetic. That was a fear of mine from back in January (after the last blood work), but today has put my mind at ease.

Basically, here's how it looks now:

I dropped 13 lbs. from January to today, going from 193 to 180.

My cholesterol, which should be between 125-200 mg/dL was 179, but today it dropped 54 points to 125 -- the low value on the scale. Even my doctor was impressed by that.

  • My HDL, or good cholesterol, which should be > or = 40 mg/dL, was 49, but today it was 56.
  • My LDL, or bad cholesterol, which should be <130 mg/dL, was 80, but today it was 41.

My triglycerides, which should be <150 mg/dL, were 251, but today they showed a drop of 112 points to 139.

My glucose level, which should be between 65-99 mg/dL, was 124, but it is now 100.

My hemoglobin A1c (the determiner of diabetes) should be <5.7% of total Hgb (hemoglobin). It was 6.3, nearing the high risk of diabetes range. Here was where I needed to worry the most. Once I am diagnosed with diabetes, it stays on my records forever, no matter whether or not my levels drop. That would affect my insurance among other things. Today, it came back as 5.8 which the doctor said was a great place to be, the low end of the pre-diabetic range.

So, I have much reason to celebrate, continuing to do whatever I need to do to maintain this. It's not that hard, really. And I am in the best shape of my life. Right now, 44 (in June) is just a number to me.

I want to run more 5Ks, and I am signing up to do the Warrior Dash in January 2012.

Things change now. Who's with me?

Wednesday, January 26, 2011


My G-d, what a truly stupefying workout tonight! It's amazing what a little motivation can do in 90 minutes ;-)

I really amped up my weights, focusing on arms and abs, with some legs thrown in for good measure. I'll hurt tomorrow for sure. Good.

To paraphrase Lady Macbeth, who would have thought I had so much sweat in me.

New music really helped (thank you JR -- you're awesome), namely Dropkick Murphys, Rancid, and - yep - Madonna... early Madonna, too. I'm not letting things get me down; instead, I'm going to reinvest in what I've been doing, try new things, push myself in all new directions. Maybe it's just the endorphins, but this is the best I've felt in a long time, before or after a workout.

So much is going well for me these days: we're building a house, I love teaching, and I'm just enjoying life right now.

I don't have room in my life for negativity. I don't want to be like Atlas, bearing the weight of my own burdens until I crumble.

I want to look ahead to things that will augment my life.



In a nutshell, my blood levels went up, and there's the slightest chance, if I don't regain some control, that I could be diagnosed with Diabetes, whether it's severe or not. My hemoglobin A1C was 6.3 -- apparently 6.5 or above is a Diabetes diagnosis. My level has always been between 6.0 - 6.1.

I won't have it.

The doctor once commented a while back, when I had had a particularly good level check, "Have you been eating bean sprouts and tofu?" Probably was. At least I was eating better than I have apparently been eating now.

I'm not going raw vegan (Sorry, Gavi), but I will go back to protein and veggies. No more breads at all. I won't get diagnosed with even the slightest type of Diabetes. Won't happen.

I'm making set workout times an actual part of my routine, and it doesn't matter what has to be moved around. Essays be damned. They'll get graded when I get to them.

No. I won't allow this. At all. I thought I had been serious about all this. Apparently, not enough.

Change is coming. Serious, life-altering change.

Watch me.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Weight loss imminent.

So, at the doctor's office, when I was weighed, let's just say I had gained a few pounds. Not many, but enough to make my stomach turn. I thought I had been so good during the holidays, but apparently, not good enough.

So now... I'm more committed than ever to losing these extra pounds and changing my eating habits further. Obviously, what I was doing simply. didn't. work.

I want a few pounds off me by next week when I go back for my follow up. I can only imagine what the blood work revealed.

Today, I worked out at the AF across from the school, and the workout was pretty good, I must say. After that, I visited the house. Guilty pleasure ;-)

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Blood and sweat.

Today, I decided to push myself a little bit harder with the weights and the elliptical, especially since I have blood work on Tuesday morning. I know I'll be in pain tomorrow, but it's worth it. It shows I'm alive, right? Sometimes, there's nothing like hearing your heart pound in your ears while cataracts of sweat cascade down your face. I love knowing I'm doing something to make me that much healthier.

To those who might read this blog, let me tell you something: once you're in your 40's, you have to work harder than you used to at 20 to stay fit and healthy. I know I'm worth every ounce of sweat that pours from me, letting me know that I am in charge, no one else.

In the words of William Ernest Henley in "Invictus":

Out of the night that covers me,
Black as the Pit from pole to pole,
I thank whatever gods may be
For my unconquerable soul.

In the fell clutch of circumstance
I have not winced nor cried aloud.
Under the bludgeonings of chance
My head is bloody, but unbowed.

Beyond this place of wrath and tears
Looms but the Horror of the shade,
And yet the menace of the years
Finds, and shall find, me unafraid.

It matters not how strait the gate,
How charged with punishments the scroll.
I am the master of my fate:
I am the captain of my soul.

I recently shared this with someone important to me: you and only you are in charge of yourself. Although, as Seneca said, "The Fates lead him who will; him who won't, they drag." So, while you make your own life choices, there's a reason and purpose for them.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

And the train moves forward...

Today wasn't one of the most exciting days at school, but it certainly was a good one. We'll be getting into some serious literature discussion with A Hero of Our Time with IB and Dubliners with AP next week, and this semester will fly by I have a feeling. St. Leo classes went well on the first day, and our short fiction unit is underway with "The Story of an Hour" and "A Rose for Emily".

In other news, tonight's workout helped clear my head a bit of some of the issues swimming around (new house, school, etc.). It's about time to mix it up again, so this weekend I will have to plan some changes. Blood work comes on Tuesday morning, too.

That's the news in Mudville, folks.

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Post-Loan Approval Workout/Pre-Return to School Workout

So, yeah, winter break is almost over. One more weekend left. But, everything has to come to fruition at some point, no? I'll be gym-bound on Saturday, but try to do more cardio during the weekend. Plus, school work. Nature of the beast, I suppose.

January 18 is blood work day again, so we'll see where I stand. I have to work at keeping the glucose level down below pre-diabetic levels (I always seem to be skirting the edge of that no matter what I do/eat).

Once we're finally moved, and I not only have the Suncoast Trail but also Anytime Fitness nearby, I think my fitness level will increase. Dramatically. I'll get my bike tuned up (or maybe buy a new one), and just start being the outdoorsy guy I want to be.

And... house loan conditionally approved. Underwriters have to check on some things, but everything looks good :)

Ciao, amici.

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Bittersweet day

Gavi and I decided not to do breakfast this morning since he wasn't feeling 100%, but while he slept, I decided to go to the gym and get in a really amazing workout, and I did! It was a mixture of elliptical, weights, and treadmill for about 2 hours altogether.

The problem was, I had made lunch plans with a friend from Facebook (a fellow comic book reader) a few days ago, but then I completely forgot about it today and went to the gym. I feel horrible. I offered to try again tomorrow, but he respectfully declined, and I'm sure this has drastically changed our friendship. I understand, though. I'd be upset with me, too. I hope he eventually forgives me.

Not the best way to bring in the new year, but I've learned my lesson about not writing things down. I don't forget things like this, either, so it makes me feel even worse. If forgiveness is not in the cards, I understand.

Happy new year :)

So, we've reached 2011... this year will be a good one -- I can feel it. Tomorrow morning will start with a gym workout, and then breakfast at Jeff and Scott's. No sourdough pancakes for me, though. I can't worry about what others will think or say when I don't indulge in these things. I'm joining people to see people, not eat food.

New outlook. New goals. 2011, watch out :-)

Monday, December 27, 2010

What's the plan, Stan?

I'd be curious to know what my friends will be doing differently in 2011? I mean, I know how I am going to make my life better, but I have no idea what others plan on doing. I'd love to know so I could be a support to them in some way.

Simplicity would be the word of the hour. Having a plan that you can easily pursue would seem like the most logical thing, you know? Having goals does help. Planning does make a difference. Introspection does make you stronger, but you actually have to listen to what your inner voice tells you. Trust in yourself. Believe that your plan can work, and do everything in your power (legally, ethically, and morally) to make it happen.

It takes one persistent, positive thought to make a difference. What will yours be?

Loving winter break!

Winter break is one of the few times of year, like summer, when I can work out as much as I want to, and I usually do. I'm going to have to mix things up a bit, too, and I need to get outside and run more. It's BEAUTIFUL outside this time of year.

We did Sweet Tomatoes for lunch earlier today, and I had no muffins or any bread, so I feel pretty good. With more bloodwork coming up in mid-January, I need to keep an eye on things.

I'm still pretty stoked that I had NO candy or crappy food at Jeff & Scott's house on Christmas night. Salad, some mashed potatoes, and broccoli... plus cheese and crackers, but not too many.

2011? Bring. It. On.

I'm ready for you.

Change is here.

So, I've decided to pare down a bit. This blog has changed, too, losing the parts of it that no longer hold as much importance to me as they once did. My posts here will encompass not only my fitness life, but my life in general. I can do only so much on social networks. Here, I can be myself. The winds are a-blowin'... and changes are a-comin' ;-)

It's time to stick to what's important.

My goals are simple:
  1. Eat healthy.
  2. Exercise my body and my mind.
  3. Clear my life of clutter.
In short -- just live a simpler life. I'm finding that things get complicated when we try to do too much, and I've learned from the process of buying a house (in progress) that it's much better to keep things simple and manageable. I'm a firm believer in doing what's right, no matter what the challenge, and this becomes part of my daily mantra.

Live life. Live. LIVE.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Life getting too real

So, lately, school's been getting a bit over the top with professional paperwork to do, papers to grade, lessons to plan, and other things that I will simply call "busy work from on high." Tonight, I made some ME time and went to the gym for about an hour to do my elliptical workout (800 cals) and rounded it off with about 200 cals on the treadmill, so I worked at least 1000 cals off tonight.

I don't take enough time for myself. I need to do that.

I work hard to stay healthy: eating well, working out, and maintaining my sanity with friends and personal time. Tonight, though, perspective came knocking on my door. I'm not in touch my friends like I should be, the "old" ones, anyway. The ones from my younger years before, during, and after college namely Brett, Stu, Sandra, Avi, Vincent, Ivy, and Scott. I miss you. I miss those parties we held on weekends, hanging out in my pool, or Avi's house. I miss the cabin trips which we did for many years in upstate New York (Summit, NY, to be exact). I miss the Red Barn. I miss the fishing. I miss replacing the cinder blocks beneath the cabin because the cabin had shifted every time we went up there. Pictures remind me of the fun we had... real fun. Some of those pictures can't see the light of day, namely because some people would not be happy. :)

It's a few weeks after Rosh Hashanah (my new year) and a few months before the secular one in December, but I am making this promise: I will be a better friend to all of you mentioned above, even if it means just doing one small thing to be better. I will do my very best to stay in touch by Facebook, email, or phone. We're getting too far away from our youth, and when I have to hear through a friend's Facebook status that one of my friends had a stroke (at 41), that's the final straw. Things need to change.

We can't revisit the past; we can only remember it. Nostalgia cannot replace late night chats, parties, just hanging out, USY dances and Kinnusim (retreats), Halloween parties with a Wizard of Oz theme... anyway, you get the point. We need to make new memories now, even if that means doing it one moment at a time.

Guys, I love you. I may not say it often enough, and I may not see you, but you'll always have a place in my heart, no matter where you live or how often we see or speak to one another.

As I build my routine of working out to fit into my hectic life, I have to take time also to remember those people who helped shape me and make me the man, teacher, partner, friend, sibling, son, and cousin I am today.

Thank you. I do love you.

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Kicking my own butt never felt so good

Not a lengthy post, but I did 45 minutes of weights, 15 on the treadmill, and an hour on the elliptical.

Man, that felt SO good.


Monday, October 5, 2009

Yeah, yeah... I know.

Way too much time has past since I last posted any gym activity, and I feel like I've let myself down by neglecting this blog. But, rather than feel disappointed, I'm just going to catch up on some things.

I've been to the gym over the past few weeks, but not as many times as I would like. School has just been eating up so much of my time. I guess that's good, though, since it is my job. The good news is that I've been able to go down one more belt hole, so now I am probably less than a 32 inch waist now. It does feel good.

I had my doctor's visit today, and I'm doing pretty well. All of the testing resulted in great things (the doctor used the word "perfect" a few times) except for my newest "disease", as my doctor put it (somewhat tongue-in-cheek): I have a vitamin D deficiency. So, now, when I take my Lipitor, I have to pop yet one more pill. I guess it could be much worse. My glucose is higher than it should be, but he thinks the vitamin D could easily help bring that down. All in all -- I'm quite healthy. My new blood levels are on this page.

Last weekend, we went to Ponte Vedra to visit some old friends, the rabbi and his family I used to live with in Lakeland. We had the chance to spend Sukkot together, and I enjoyed a beautiful Conservative synagogue service. I missed that so much. I missed the music, the prayers, the entire liturgy. Most of all, I missed the family we went to see. It had been about 7 years since we had seen each other, and I don't want to leave that much time between visits again.

So, that's the deal. I promise I'll be better with my blogging. :-)

Saturday, September 5, 2009

Aaaah... finally!

After a week of craziness, I finally had the chance to go to the gym this morning and work off some of the frustration that had been encrusted on me since school started. So much "new"ness makes people a little cooky, and I am no exception.

Today was largely a chance to do some weights and cardio, but not as much as I would normally do. I ran on the tm for about 10 minutes, did 30 min. on the elliptical, and about 45 minutes of weights and such. It was just a well needed butt-kicking.

I hope to do more over the next two days since I have off Monday. Then, I can do much more. :-)

Saturday, August 29, 2009

This just isn't working

Not going to the gym in a week? Uh uh. I need to go more than that, no matter what. If I have to leave a gym bag in my car so I can swing by after school, then so be it. It's THAT important.

Today was about 15 min. on the tm, 45 min. with weights-n-such, and then about 40 min. on the elliptical. I'm thinking somewhere around 1000 -1100 cals. It was intense, though, especially with the weights and other exercises.

This schedule of mine is certainly stress-inducing, but not always because it's a bad day. Just working two teaching jobs, with twice as many papers to grade and lessons to teach/plan, takes its toll on me. Last week was Week #1, too, so I had to be ON all the time.

Excellent workout today. Stay tuned for more (frequent) postings, too.

Friday, August 14, 2009

Chocolate pudding... healthy?

I'm sure I haven't created a new dessert, but I just started doing this to amp up the nutritional value of my favorite dessert. I buy the 2.1 oz box of JELL-O Sugar Free / Fat Free Instant Chocolate pudding, and into the 3 cups of milk, I whisk two scoops of chocolate whey protein powder before I blend the pudding powder into it. Then, chill as usual. Here's the nutritional info for 1 cup (two servings):

Calories: 247
Calories from fat: 4.2
Total Fat: <1g
Saturated Fat: 0g
Trans Fat: 0g
Cholesterol: 13mg
Sodium: 650mg
Total Carbohydrate: 17g
Dietary Fiber: 1g
Sugars: <1g
Protein: 16g

So, it's not a low calorie dessert, but it's virtually fat free, sugar free. But, the protein powder raises the chocolate quotient, which is never a bad thing. ;-)

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Elliptical day

800 cals. on the elliptical (watching Burn Notice with closed captioning) and 500 cals. on the tm, for about 1300 cals. this morning.

Sunday, August 9, 2009

Weights Day

Today was my tm/weights x 4 day, for about 1200 calories or so.

School comes soon. Actually, I should say schoolS come soon, because I teach both at the high school level as well as the college level. Once that madness and mayhem begins, my schedule changes drastically, which affects my workout schedule. I need to develop a plan that will work so that I can maintain my level of fitness.

Tuesdays and Thursdays, I will get home around 8 p.m., so I could always just go my elliptical those nights, since it's an hour. Monday, Wednesday, and Friday could be the tm/weights nights (about 1 ½ hours). That would burn approx. 5200 calories during the week. Once the weather cools down a bit, I will run on the M-W-F nights, which usually burns about 1100 calories. It depends on how my days go, I guess.

Along with my IB and AP classes, I'll be teaching English 4 Honors which presents some interesting challenges. The first is the senior project (which I don't capitalize because I don't want to dignify it with any more attention than it deserves), which I think isn't the wisest use of time and energy for my students, although they'll be in an Honors class (I did capitalize Honors because I DO think it deserves more attention). Thankfully, my IB students don't do that kind of project because they have too much else to do, and my AP students do a modified project geared around an Author Study (note capitals here).

Like a phoenix rising from its ashes, the school year begins anew, fresh with new challenges and excitement for both my students and me. I'm looking forward to working with new minds, and I am confident I can work my fitness goals into this new year.

Friday, August 7, 2009

Morning workout :-)

A short one today, just the elliptical and 200 cals. on the tm to total about 1000 calories. I'll go back in the morning for a more intense workout. I have much to do today. :)

Friday, July 31, 2009

Burning it up

After having not worked out since Monday, I had to had to had to go today, and it was a conflagration of calories. Weights, crunches, etc. nestled between 200 calorie runs on the tm (for of those in total) gave me about 1200 - 1300 cals. gonzo, and add to that the 800 cals. from the elliptical, I set on fire about 2100 calories this morning.

Between hour 1 and 2, I had a Carb Rite Diet bar (Chocolate Brownie) just to see if adding some fuel to the furnace would help. I did feel better having had some energy food. I asked the owner about whether he could get Zoic for the vending machine since I like it, and I think it's better than most drinks out there. A former student brought it to my attention (Nick, you were right: the chocolate one is better!) so I wanted to pass it on.

I have to get my Wall of Success entry ready, too. I'm proud of what I've done, so why not share
it, right?

Anywhooo, time for me to do some editing. Until next time... :-)

Monday, July 27, 2009

2100 calories, baby...

800 cals. on tm. About 500 cals. with weights. 800 cals. on elliptical.

2100 cals. burned. Excellent workout.

And, the owner of the gym wants to put me on his Wall of Success.

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Saturday Workout

45 minutes of weights, an hour of elliptical.. about 1300 cals. burned. Nothing else to say.

Tomorrow, I want to run, but I need to go to bed right now for that to happen.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Late night workout

I had some energy to burn, so I hit the gym around 11 p.m. I was a little tired when I got there, but I still did my 800 cals. on the tm (200 cal. increments) which was about 45 minutes, and in between I did the weights (about another 45 minutes).

I'll either run or do the elliptical workout tomorrow morning.

A great workout, though.

Sunday, July 19, 2009

What on Earth is wrong with me?

Let me start by saying that I didn't do a-n-y-thing remotely fitness oriented Friday or Saturday. Saturday night consisted of a wine & cheese get-together with some former students at my apartment--a little awkward, but they're over 21 and adults now, and I wanted to have a chance to catch up when it didn't have to be at Starbucks, which seems to be the only place I meet anyone these days. So, during the day, I cooked/cleaned.

I made homemade pinto bean dip and hummus, and we had pineapple mango chipotle salsa with corn chips, some veggies, potato chips-n-onion dip, a cheese board with crackers (are you seeing the CARBFEST neon sign flashing over this menu?) Well, it was low-budget, so what can you do. Oh, and I made little lemon cakes and chocolate cakes. Yes, I know: how Martha of me.

My point was simply that I ended up noshing on that stuff throughout the evening and after everyone left, and a little today, too. So... I went to the gym at 5:00 p.m. today, after a day of watching Justice League Unlimited episodes on YouTube (say it with me: pathetic... there you go).

I desperately needed to kick my butt. And I did. This was probably THE most intense workout I have ever done.

Here's the breakdown:
  • tm (200 cals./11 min.)
  • weights (10 mins./125 cal. worth)
  • tm (200 cals./11 min.)
  • weights (10 mins./125 cal. worth)
  • tm (200 cals./11 min.)
  • weights (10 mins./125 cal. worth)
  • tm (200 cals./12 min.)
  • weights (10 mins./125 cal. worth)
  • elliptical (1 hour/800 cals.).
Total: 2100 cals --

I am insane.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Limits? What are those?

Tonight, after having spent the day reading essays for 6½ hours, I had some down time, and then I went to the gym. Not quite the regimen I had planned, but it was intense nonetheless. I did tm (150 cals.), weights*, tm (150 cals.), weights, tm (150 cals.), weights, tm (150 cals.), then weights. Overall, it was about 1 hour 20 minutes and approximately 1000 calories, give or take.

I've amped up my reps to be 15 - 12 - 10 for just about everything except bicep curls; those are 8 - 7 - 6. I know that seems like it's not enough, but with 40 lb. dumbbells, believe me, it's plenty. I pushed myself tonight, so tomorrow (while I am trying to bubble in scores) I will have sore arms.

I also did dips, upper leg curls, push ups, ab crunches/sit ups, shoulder presses, and lat pulls.

Tomorrow, I want to go running, but I'll settle for elliptical. :-)

*Weights, for me, includes things like ab crunches, push ups, or anything that's not elliptical or tm.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Elliptical evening

Today was a running day, but it was just too warm/sticky, so I went tonight to the gym and did an hour on the elliptical, plus a little on the tm. The elliptical calorie readout said 816, so I did 184 on the tm to round it off at 1000 (whether these things are accurate, I'll never know, but it makes me feel better to think so).

Tomorrow's the full gym day, so I'll be revisiting the elliptical and tm. If the mood strikes me, I'll run in the a.m., then do the weights later to mix it up a bit.

Monday, July 13, 2009

Split personality

So, today, I changed things around a little, just for giggles. I did my tm run at 8.0 mph, and did it for 150 cals., sandwiching the weights in between:

tm / w / tm / w / tm / w / tm / w

600 cals. of tm work, plus about 500 cals. of weights. I'll do the elliptical later since I have to work at 1 p.m., and I won't want to be getting back at noon. Rushing to shower, change, etc... not a good plan.

This will give me something to anticipate later. :-)

If I time it right, I can find something really good on cable that I can't watch at home.

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Burn, baby, burn...

So, yesterday was just a foodfest... Ugh.

The other half and I had lunch at Sweet Tomatoes (which I love) around noon.

Then, around 5 p.m., I met him, his friend who is doing sound for RENT, our friend Adrienne, and her sister for dinner at Queen of Sheba Ethiopian Restaurant. Not only was it a first for me, but it was also spectacular. They serve the vegetarian dishes on a teff pancake, and you use more pieces of teff cakes to eat the food (no utensils).

Then, I went to meet my friends Kathy, Stark, and Margaret at our friend Shirley's house for a gathering. Shirley went out of her way to put a wonderful spread of food. Anyway, I ended up eating more that I really wanted to eat (not gorging myself, though). And, dessert followed.

I decided on the ride home that I wasn't going to feel guilty about it. I ate the food and had an amazing evening with friends. I don't eat that much normally, and I had already decided to go running today, so it wasn't going to weigh on my conscience. If there's one thing I have learned through this whole living better experience is that guilt over the things you do just doesn't help. And -- here's the kicker -- the guilt doesn't erase the calories you've already consumed. So, you just make a better choice the next time. I know people who get so upset about what they've eaten because it was one more cookie than they should have had or one more hamburger.

Does that frustration, anger, resentment, or self-flagellation DO anything other than make you feel worse? No.

You chalk it up to a bad food choice (or day), and move on. As long as you do good things to compensate (i.e. run, go to the gym, etc.), you know the calories can be burned. So, I've just completed my morning run (although my Garmin seemed to stop recording about 42 minutes into the workout), and I'm drinking my protein shake, so life is good. Another 1100 calories: BURNED.

Friday, July 10, 2009

Just a gym ole time...

Same routine as last time, but I didn't do anything yesterday when I was supposed to do something (no running because I worked and the rain). I'm noticing some definition in my arms... not looking to be looking like Superman, just want tone. I'll get those abs to show somehow. I really don't eat crappy food, and I don't eat a lot of carbs, either. Maybe as I add more cardio time, I'll lose some more of the fat covering the abs (and it really isn't a big layer either). I work my abs each time at the gym, so I know when that fatty layer comes off, there will be some toned muscles. Not exactly washboard, but who knows...

Anyway, I need to shower as I am scoring more essays at 12:30 (every little bit o' $$$ helps).

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Time to move up a step...

Usual routine today at the gym. I did increase my 50 cal. start and finish on the treadmill to 75 cal. so I have effectively moved from 500 to 550 cals. on the treadmill, ≈500 with weights, and 800 on the elliptical for ... ≈1850.

I also saw former student at the gym, and she was wearing a Berger University t-shirt :-)

Sunday, July 5, 2009

A Bittersweet Run

Did you ever have one of those dreams where a voice speaks to you about what you should do? Not quite your conscience, and not quite your mother? I had one of those moments this morning before I woke up (or more, before I got up, because I think I was partially awake). It said,

"You will get up and go running, because if you DON'T, you'll kick yourself all day for not doing it, and then you'll feel like you missed out. So, GET UP and do it!"

Or something like that. In any event, I went running around 7:30 a.m. It was mildly humid, not a cloud in the sky, although it was a little hazy (which I could probably attribute to the fireworks from last night). While I was making my way down Northdale Blvd. (the one that meets up with Northdale Blvd. -- yeah, I know), I saw what I thought was a dead bird on the road. It wasn't.

It was a dead puppy. :(

As I passed by it (because if I had stopped, I would have bawled like a child), I said a silent prayer to G-d, hoping that it met its end quickly. I know this is sappy, but I decided to dedicate the run to the puppy for all the running he/she would never get to do.

Perhaps, the dog had been spooked by fireworks last night and ran away from home? I don't have any clue, but it's possible. But, it was a very good run for hot, muggy Florida, though. 8 miles, 1100 cals. So, um, yeah. That's all, folks.

Friday, July 3, 2009

I can see clearly now...

the RAIN has gone... well, for now, anyway. Had I known it would have been a dry day, I would have gone running, but I opted for the gym instead. Nothing different from the last time I went, except I managed to watch an episode of NCIS on the elliptical now that they have Closed Captioning. Hey, whatever works, eh?

I'm hoping that this weekend, being the 4th of July and all, won't be a problem for eating. I know it can be for many people, and I will be tempted to eat things I shouldn't. We're going to our weekly "gathering" at our friends' house tonight, which usually means cheese and crackers, guacamole and chips, salsa, maybe spinach dip (evil, eeeevil stuff... but so good), hummus, etc. We'll probably bring fruit salad and something veggie-oriented, as we usually do. We'll more than likely crash there so we can spend the day with friends tomorrow for the 4th.

Keeping kosher presents some obstacles to eating with friends, but I think if I bring some salmon or something like that for dinner tomorrow night, we should be okay. I know a few chips or cookies here and there won't hurt me, but I'd rather not. I've talked myself into having a handful of dark chocolate covered almonds on a few occasions, reminding myself that both almonds and dark chocolate can be beneficial. This time? We'll see. I'd like to say I will avoid them entirely, but a few almonds covered in rich, dark chocolate really don't derail my attempts to lose weight, and denying myself something that I like can only be bad. So, moderation. Yup.

Have a wonderful 4th of July to anyone who reads this aside from me. Drive safely. Drink responsibly. Eat with the idea that, yes, food does have calories on holidays, no matter what you tell yourselves. ;)

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

More is better

Tonight's workout brought me to a new total of calories burned, if indeed the machines are remotely accurate (regardless, though, I kicked my own butt again).

I brought my tm workout to 500 cals., so with my ≈500 cals. lifting weights and my 800 cals. on the elliptical tonight, my grand total was ≈1800 cals. for my 2 hrs. of gym time. I'd venture to guess that other cals. were burned today, so my grandER total is probably 2000+ calories.

I'm gonna pay for the intensity of the weights. I know that for a fact.

I take a little pleasure in the fact that I feel like I can hold my own among the 20-something guys who work out when I am there. I definitely push myself to my upper limits, hoping to drop that extra ten pounds the doctor thinks I should lose. I'm avoiding carbs as much as possible, but I won't stop eating them entirely. (I had about 6 Saltines tonight, so :P)

I had had plans to go running this morning (since I didn't do anything yesterday), but it has been raining here non-stop, with the requisite thunder and lightning, for almost two days, so it was better that I went to the gym tonight. I'm hoping for a clear morning to go running, but I don't know if that's possible. If not, I'll go run at the gym. I've also learned that the elliptical machines have Closed Captioning. I've never see that before, so either it's a new feature, or I just didn't know how to turn it on. Either way, I like it.

A few friends have asked me for advice, so here it is:
  1. Set reasonable goals for both fitness and eating.
  2. Simply cutting back on things like soda, excess sugar, and fatty foods, even if you change nothing else, can promote weight loss. Start small (see #1).
  3. Mix up your exercise routines every few days. Do a little research or talk to a trainer about what exercises would be right for you and your level of fitness. It's easy to get bored if your routine never changes. Sometimes, doing your workout in reverse helps, too.
  4. Read labels. If something as simple as bread has 50 ingredients, perhaps it's not the best bread. Avoid foods where sugar shows up close to the front of the list, and also avoid High Fructose Corn Syrup.
  5. Don't deny yourself the things you like, just eat one portion of them. Just consider that as part of your calorie count for the day. A site like The Daily Plate (which keeps track of your water intake, your calories, and your fitness) may help.
  6. Have a cheat day. Yes, you heard me. Have one day when you have that ice cream or that candy bar. It won't kill you. Rewards help you focus, and they also keep you from eating that stuff more often. Remember, cheating doesn't mean finishing the half gallon of ice cream; it means eating one portion.
Well, that's it until next time. Ciao!

Monday, June 29, 2009

Inch by inch

Today, the workout got amped up a little bit, and it really was a little. My routine lately has been weights/tm* (134 cals)/weights/tm (133 cals)/weights/tm (100 cals)/weights/elliptical.

That's figures out to be 300 calories on the tm, about 500 or so with weights, and approx. 815 cals. on the elliptical. That's approx. 1600 cals.

Today, I added a 50 calorie burst before the first weight set and after the last weight set, bringing the tm total to 400 cals. So, the new total is about 1700 cals.

That doesn't include any other calories I burn during the course of the day, so I am burning well over 2000 cals. today. Tomorrow, I run, so that will be about 1100 cals. + the every day stuff.

It just feels good.

*tm = treadmill, which will be the only way I write it from now on. :)

Saturday, June 27, 2009

Be careful what you wish for...

This morning, I ran around 8:00 a.m. (hoping to avoid the Hades-like heat), and I even wore my sweat-cap (see picture) which probably looks ridiculous, but it worked. Sweat didn't pour down my face. So, I think I will continue to use it as long as it's hot out when I run. Plus, I also used a white running shirt so I wouldn't be baking.

In the middle of the run, I thought to myself (talking to G-d, as it were), "It wouldn't kill you for a little cloud cover to hide the sun?"

Well, a few minutes later, dark, ominous clouds rolled above my head and then--you guessed it--rain fell... for about ten minutes. Now, it felt nice, but it was a little annoying. So now, when I talk with He Who Sends Rain Clouds, I will make sure I am much more specific with my request. In any event, I completed my 8 mile run, feeling the pain of one annoying blister. Oh, and I'm down to 189 (from 194 since last week). I don't know how accurate that is, but if I am burning about 1100 calories a day at the gym or running PLUS burning them throughout the day, perhaps I am going to lose the 10 pounds the doctor wanted me to lose.

Friday, June 26, 2009

Rockin' on...

Nothing new and exciting to share, just that I have returned from the gym, finished my protein shake, and now I seek out lunch.

Tomorrow morning, I will do my best to get up reasonably early and go running in the morning, pre-Hades heat.

It's just one of those rainy, "eh" kind of days, too. But, it'll be good, and it's a Friday (although why that should matter, I don't know, since I am on summer vacation).

Thursday, June 25, 2009

So this is what Hades feels like...

So, after a morning of ridiculous things (like my Bluetooth headset suddenly not working -- ARGH!), I decided to go running around 10:30 a.m. Well, the temperature in Tampa at that time was 87° with 73% humidity. Plus (and I am admitting stupidity on my part here), I wore a sleeveless black running short and black shorts.

I know. What on earth was a thinking?! It was a hellacious run/walk scenario -- fortunately, I had water with me. Heat stroke? Not on my "to do" list.

Well, I made it home after about 1 hr. 20 min., cutting the last little curve of my route off simply because I didn't want to pass out where no one could find me.

But, I burned off about 900 calories. Later, I will go into the air conditioned gym and do more stuff, but after I do some editing of my manuscript.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Late night burn

So, I never did go to the gym yesterday, for reasons that escape me, so I decided I HAD to go tonight. I did the alternating weights and treadmill (tm) routine, but did the tm treadmill at 133/134/133 calorie increments, thereby going to 400 calories. I did 400 cals. on the elliptical (my earbuds lost their charge), and I did about 45 minutes of vigorous weights. I done good.

After visiting with el doctor today, and finding out that I need to get back on Lipitor again, and him telling me I should look to lose about ten more pounds which would take me down to about 184, and saying I should just avoid carbs (like potatoes, rice, and pasta -- which I don't eat anyway)... [deep breath] I decided I needed to get out of the house and go sweat for a while.

I also bought some more protein powder, and I usually by ON 100% Gold Standard Whey Protein, but the salesperson at GNC suggested I try their brand of the same stuff. It was a bigger container and cost the same as the smaller one of ON that I was looking at initially. Two scoops a day.

Basically, breakfast will consist of egg white omelets (with or without veggies) cooked in PAM and Fage Total 0% Greek yogurt with fruit. Lunch, probably some vegetables in some fashion (i.e. salad) and fruit, maybe some tuna or other protein. Dinner, fish or chicken/turkey, plus veggies. Carbs be damned (not that I am huuuuge carb eater anyway). :)

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Mixin' It Up

Tonight was another killer workout mixing it up (cf. June 19). This technique really forces me to use my time a little more wisely, too. I found it interesting that I was watching Ace of Cakes on the Food Network while I was running at 7.5 mph for 5 - 6 minute intervals.

Not much else to say, but YEE HAAAA... ;-)

Saturday, June 20, 2009

Imitating Sisyphus

So, as today is hotter than Hades and steamy enough to cook broccoli, I decided to run at the gym rather than risk heat stroke (which would really put a damper on my summer). Since "CHANGE" is the watch word for my workouts (cf. prior entry), and running at level zero for an hour would be bo-ring... I did the following:

I started out around 4.5 mph on the treadmill at level zero for about 20 seconds (just to make sure my iPod was ready to go), but then I cranked it up to a 10% incline and varied the workout from 4.5 to 5.0 mph. I didn't know how much impact that would have, but trying running uphill when you live in a state where hills are rare. I think I sweated about 2 gallons.

After about 65 minutes (including the 5 minute cool down), I left feeling spent, but having burned about 1084 calories (if the machine is at all accurate). In any event, I feel like I had an excellent workout, and I tried something new.

Change is good.

Friday, June 19, 2009

Change is good

Normally, I run on the treadmill for about 16 minutes (325 cals), do my 45 minutes of weights, and then an hour of elliptical... all in nice chunks.

I wanted change.

So, today, I worked out for:
  • 12 minutes doing push ups and assorted weights, then
  • 6 minutes on the treadmill at Level 7.7 for 125 calories, then
  • 13 minutes doing more weights and such, then
  • 6 minutes on the treadmill at Level 7.8 for 125 calories, then
  • 10 minutes with more weights, push ups, etc., then
  • 6 minutes on the treadmill at Level 8 for about 100 calories,
  • 10 more minutes of weights and such, and finally...
  • 1 hour of elliptical fun :-)

So, a total of 2 hours of working my butt off. And I loved every minute of it.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Kicking my own butt

So, today went well. I did about 17 minutes on the treadmill, with a 10% incline, and burned about 306 calories. Then, I lifted weights pretty vigorously for 45 minutes, and finally, I burned about 836 calories during one hour on the elliptical.

I've also started using The Daily Plate again to manage my food intake, so I can see exactly what I am eating. On WebMD, I am also tracking my cholesterol and triglycerides. I just had bloodwork yesterday, so next Tuesday (June 23), I get my results. We'll see what happens.

Saturday, May 30, 2009

Gotta love technology

So, I'd finished my 15 minute warm up on the treadmill, my 35 minutes of weights, and was about to do my elliptical routine when my Bluetooth headset ran out of juice. And, yeah, I'm dependent on my music. So, I'll go back later to finish my elliptical workout or go running--one or the other :-)

I have to remember to leave my regular headset in my gymbag so I can have a back up, but I didn't think about it.

This summer will be my chance to do so much more since I'm not going anywhere. I want to SEE my abs by fall. That's my goal!

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Yeah, yeah, I know...

So, it's been a while since I've posted. March, to be exact. Sue me :)

I've been going to the gym regularly, doing my 1½ hours of weights/elliptical. When school lets out, I'll be kicking it into overdrive. I just need to do it. And running HAS to be part of that... more running... more more more. With both the high school and college classes, running is harder to do during the week, but I have to find a way to fit it in next semester. MWF can be good running days, with TTH being good gym days, but I don't know if I could come home at almost 8 p.m. and then go to the gym until 10 p.m. (my 1½ after I've come home from the university).

42 is approaching quickly, and I need to be stronger, more focused, and consistent. So, as the end of the school year approaches, I need to plan my summer.

And so it begins!

Friday, March 27, 2009

Personal Best

So, I had blood work done this past week. I have had problems with cholesterol and triglycerides over the years. When I was in my early 30s, I ballooned to 260 and my cholesterol was over 700 (norm is 125-200) and my triglycerides were around 1300 (norm is <150).>

I quit smoking in November 2006. In March 2007, weighing in at about 225, I decided to see the doctor for a routine checkup and he told me my triglycerides were around 600 or so, and my cholesterol was 300ish. So, I started taking Niacin to reduce those levels, and it seemed to work. Plus, I had started running in March 2007 (well, walking a lot), eventually working up to my 8 mi/every other day now. Nov. 2007, I joined a gym (Anytime Fitness), which has been helping me, so now I weigh around 190.

My levels in November ’08 were Triglycerides: 342 (remember, norm is <150)/ Cholesterol: 238 (norm is 125-200); in December ’08 they were Triglycerides: 229 / Cholesterol: 181. My “good” cholesterol or HDL was 51 (should be >40), and my LDL, or “bad” cholesterol was 84 (should be <130).

The Niacin was affecting my liver a little, so the doctor switched me to Lipitor, and I upped my exercise starting in December (just after our meeting).

As of today, my Triglycerides are 76, and my cholesterol is 126. My good cholesterol is 55, and my bad is 56. This is the lowest they have EVER been.

That is EXCELLENT. The doctor asked when we saw me, “Have you been eating bean sprouts and tofu?”

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Slow posting, but better at running

So, I ran on Tuesday night and on Thursday night -- both enjoyable experiences. Night running has its advantages, since it's generally cooler and has fewer distractions, but I was amazed at how many people ran in the dark with me.

My friend Sue wants me to run a half marathon in March, but I don't think I will be able to train for it with the high school and college classes. Plus, 13 miles? Seriously? I like running, but I am not competitive in the least. I ran one 5K for kicks, but would I do it again? I don't know.

Tomorrow looks like a good running/gym day. I have to kick my own butt more than usual. These last pounds to lose are the most annoying.

Sunday, January 4, 2009

Sweat is amazing.

I don't think I have sweat this much in a long time. It's so cleansing, purifying, and life-affirming.

So, thirty minutes of intense weights (I'll be sore tomorrow), and an hour of elliptical burning about 856 cals. (that's the number on the machine, and that's what I am sticking with).

Tomorrow, running.

Saturday, January 3, 2009

Cool morning run...

Had a good run this morning. I know my legs will kill me later, though. As I get back into the groove, it'll be better. I do miss the routine. The weather now is perfect for this... around 60° F. Monday morning, before work. That's the plan.

Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Gym time.

Excellent "ME" time today. 'Nuff said.

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Running feels so good :)

8 miles never felt so good. :) I'm sore, but it's a good thing.

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Hoy al gimnasio...

I mixed it up a bit today, doing push-ups, using some different machines, and focusing on a variety of muscle groups that I haven't hit in a little while, hoping to throw my body off track a bit. I did about 700 cals. worth of elliptical, too.

We went to Chipotle for lunch where I had a burrito bowl with rice (with cilantro), black beans, onions and peppers, tomatillo-tomato salsa (medium to hot), corn, guacamole, and lettuce. I particularly enjoyed it. I could see making this at home, with perhaps some grilled fish or chicken, or vegetarian (like today).

I'll be looking into some new running shoes this week, probably tomorrow, since I need to get back into that. I'd rather not take chances with shoes I've had for about a year (when six months is the recommended time to replace them).

Friday, December 26, 2008

Post-Party Workout

So, last night, I did reasonably well with eating, although a friend made some latkes (it IS Hanukkah, after all), so I had a few of them with a small dollop of sour cream and a bit of apple sauce. Gavi brought Moose Munch he had received from a client (that chocolate-covered, toffee-laden, popcorn evilness). I had a few pieces of it, but not anywhere close to a 200 calorie serving (with 10g fat). So, I feel good about that. I think I just noshed a bit on corn chips, bean salad, hummus, veggies, cheese... so it felt like I was gorging myself, but perhaps it wasn't that bad.

BUT... this morning, I killed about 856 calories on the elliptical in an hour and did some intense weights for about ten minutes (still sore from Wednesday). So, I feel good about today. I've only had a banana so far, and I'll probably have a bowl of Pumpkin Granola cereal and a protein shake.

I think I will run tomorrow... (of course, I've been saying that for a week now). I do need new shoes, though, so perhaps I will get some later.

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Another good day

Keepin' it real with another hour and a half of sweat pouring down my face. Started out on the treadmill for a while, then moved to weights (I am actually sore today), and then to the elliptical.

A Hanukkah present to myself. :)

Monday, December 22, 2008

Lather. Rinse. Repeat...

Another fine session at ye old gym. 90 minutes of sheer bliss.

Saturday, December 20, 2008

I love workouts

Nothing new here... same workout, but I just love them. I am going to run more this week, too. No New Years Resolution needed. I'm on it.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Sweat... that's when you know you're doing something worthwhile.

At least at the gym. I did my thing. I'll do more this week. :)

Monday, December 15, 2008

Nothin' like endorphins to make you feel alive!

A little treadmill, a lot of weights, and an hour of elliptical. I know that I will pay for this tomorrow... and the next day. But! Tomorrow is a running day. Without the college courses to teach, I have my Tuesday and Thursday back, so I can work in running for the next three weeks or so. After that, we'll see.

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Okay... Break's Over.

This morning, I ran in Ft. Lauderdale at my parents' condo, 5.54 miles according to my Garmin. It's not as far as I'm used to running, but I ran the first half of that distance with my sister (so I didn't mind running slower than my usual pace if it means I get quality "sibling time," right?) The cool air felt so invigorating, and I couldn't remember why I hadn't run in so long (I actually ran a few weeks ago), since I really do enjoy pounding the asphalt. Florida "winter" is just a great time of year to run.

With school this semester, I have struggled to maintain my gym schedule and the running, so the running fell to the background. I need to... NEED TO... get back into this again. Aside from the rush I feel, I enjoy the idea of keeping my weight down. And with the next few weeks with no college classes to teach, and winter break right around the corner, I have about 3 - 4 weeks of uninterrupted ME time--gym and running.

I also need to run when the college classes begin again, too. Even if I don't do my usual run, I need to do something.

Okay, so break's over. I'm ready to kick my own butt again. It just has to happen.

Stay tuned.

Monday, September 22, 2008

Monday's numbers...

50 cals., treadmill
300 cals., weights
350 cals., elliptical

700 cals.

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Saturday midnight

250 cals., treadmill
505 cals., weights
700 cals., elliptical

Total 1455 cals. :)

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Never again.

This is a picture of taken in 1997 or 1998 when I lived in Lakeland, FL. I was at a synagogue function that night. In this photo, I weight approximated 270 lbs.

As G-d is my witness, that will never, ever happen again. I'd sooner give up a limb before I'd let myself become that heavy again.

Last March (2007), I weighed about 225 lbs., which is not as heavy, but it was heavy enough.

Now, I weigh 184 lbs. and I'm not done yet.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Saturday morning workout

I started the morning off all by myself in the gym, which I enjoy since no one's on the machines or using the weights yet. Making the most of a workout nowadays has become a priority for me since my schedule has changed, I would say, drastically. Theoretically, I should be able to go to the gym on MWF and run on TTH, but that's not happening... yet. Both the high school and university gigs wear me out some days, especially when I don't feel as prepared for either or both (which you wouldn't think would happen to a 16 year veteran of teaching, but it does once in a while).

Anywho... today I ran on the treadmill at 7.0 speed for about 15 minutes, building up about 250 cals. burned. Then, I worked out heavily for 35 minutes, bringing me another 505 cals. burned (approximately). Lastly, I did my hour plus five minutes on the elliptical, finishing with 761 cals. burned. The grand total is 1517 cals. Not too shabby, although I know it's hard to gauge the accuracy of these numbers. I worked myself into a sweaty stupor, so I know I did something.

Until next time...

Saturday, September 6, 2008

My workout...

Weights: 577 cals.
Walking: 148 cals.
Elliptical: 600 cals.

TOTAL: 1326

Wednesday, September 3, 2008


Walking: 149 cals.
Treadmill: 446 cals.
Elliptical: 154 cals.

TOTAL: 749 cals.

Saturday, August 30, 2008

A long week...

I finally had the time and energy to visit AF for a workout. With my first week at the university, I thought I would be able to go W and F, but I was unable to go for various reasons. I've been able to maintain my weight loss since the beginning, which some people have noticed (to my pleasure). I want to make a routine work so I can keep doing what I love to do.

I haven't run in a while, months to be exact. It's just way too hot in the afternoons this summer, so I have replaced it with the gym. I do like to run, though. It'll come back to me.

Today, I warmed up on the treadmill for 100 cals., and then did 200 cals. more after 35 minutes of weights (approx. 505 cals.); plus, I did 400 cals. on the elliptical machine, for a total of 1205 cals.

Monday, I have off from work, so I will try to run, but at least go to the gym. I'm trying to make it work. I just need to find the right way.

Monday, August 25, 2008

Tonight's numbers

I walked to the gym, so I burned about 116 cals. At the gym, I ran on the treadmill for 30 mins., expending about 413 cals. , and lifted weights for about 35 min., expending about 505 cals., for a total of 1034 cals.

I also noticed that someone at the gym recognized me for being a "Superhero," which is very, very flattering.

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Hurts so good...

Walked to the gym, lifted weights, did the elliptical... all in all, about 1429 cals. I skipped yesterday because I was exhausted; it would have been a counterproductive workout if I had gone last night.

More to come!

Monday, August 18, 2008

Late night workout

200 cals. on treadmill (about 10 minutes), running at level 7
700 cals. on elliptical (about an hour)
505 cals. with weights (approximate amount; I take my number from my account at traineo)
106 cals. walking to/from the gym

1511 cals. overall

Saturday, August 16, 2008

The numbers...

800 cals. on the elliptical
433 cals. with weights
50 cals. warming up on the treadmill

1283 cals. overall

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

A routine's a routine...

800 cals. on the elliptical
433 cals. with weights
50 cals. warming up on the treadmill

1283 cals. overall

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Workout plus...

106 cals. walking to and from the gym
50 cals. warming up on the treadmill
382 cals. running for 3o minutes on the treadmill
715 cals. for one hour on the elliptical
433 cals. for 30 minutes of weights

Total: 1686 cals.

These numbers are all approximations, but I'm going with the same measurement tools I have always used.

Thursday, August 7, 2008

The late night numbers...

50 cals. on the treadmill to warm up
433 cals. working with weights (30 mins.)
853 cals. on the elliptical

And the grand total is... 1336 cals.

Friday, August 1, 2008

Nothing to do with running...

I've been thinking about someone who was a friend of mine back when I first came online and used AOL (with dial up). His name was Duncan (screen name Oceanblu). We used to chat in GnuMemberLounge on AOL, an off-beat chat room, and we chatted about every morning online, or on the phone, and he was just a really good friend. If I am not mistaken, he was a school teacher, too. He lived in Virginia, was married when I first knew him, but later divorced his wife, came out, and lived with his boyfriend, Steven, at which point I met him in person. I was going through a difficult time, dealing with being gay, and I just wasn't the best friend I could have been to a few people, and I took advantage of Duncan's friendship. When I drove down to visit him and Steve, I had little to no money, so they had to pay for dinner that night (which I didn't tell them until we were in the restaurant, I believe), and I spent a lot of time online at their house, when I should have been getting to know them better.

I also didn't treat my friend Sue (Deebs) well, and took advantage of her friendship as well. I was just not a nice person then, but--looking back on it--I was in turmoil over so much. Duncan wrote me an email when I had moved to Florida that was titled: "Your Launching Papers Have Arrived" which basically said how he felt being taken advantage of, used, and how he felt about me using others. He then proceeded to tell me how he didn't want to be friends anymore.

Needless to say, this hurt, but I deserved it. I didn't understand how much it would hurt until years later, when I found some cassettes he had made for me. I know I was not the best friend I could have been then (back in 1994 - 1995), and I wish I could make up for it now. I used to know his last name, but I have forgotten it now, or I would try to contact him to let him know that I am not the same person I used to be. I'm much more self-assured and much happier.

I can only hope that, someday, this note will be read by him, and he'll forgive me. I have no means to find him, nor do I know anyone anymore who knew him.

Duncan, if you're out there, and you read this, know that I am sorry for what happened and would love the chance to make amends, even after 13 years.

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Tonight's numbers

100 cals. on the treadmill
842 cals. on the elliptical
433 cals. with weights

TOTAL: 1375 cals. overall

Monday, July 28, 2008

Workout tonight

50 cals. treadmill (warmup)
433 cals. weights
816 cals. elliptical

TOTAL: 1299 cals.

Friday, July 25, 2008

And now it begins...

112 cals. for 10 minute warm up on treadmill
738 cals. for an hour on the elliptical machine
433 cals. for 30 minutes of lifting weights (approx.)

TOTAL: 1283 cals.

And now it begins. I need to do MORE.

Monday, July 14, 2008

And more gym time...

Okay, I need to be running outside, but with the humidity and heat, I am just not motivated. I should just get up pre-dawn to do it. After I get back from Seattle, I will log some run time to get back into the routine. In any event, I did go to the gym today, so here are the numbers:

816 cals. on the elliptical.
50 cals. on the treadmill (warming up).
433 cals. with weights.

TOTAL: 1299 calories

Saturday, July 12, 2008


433 calories weights + 800 calories elliptical = 1233 calories

That's all folks...

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Slightly shorter, but good nonetheless...

550 cals. on the treadmill.
433 cals. with weights.
200 cals. on elliptical.

TOTAL: 1183 cals.

Saturday, July 5, 2008

Better and better

35 minutes, treadmill: 550 cals.
30 minutes, weights: 433 cals. (approx.)
1 hour, five minutes, elliptical: 800 cals.

TOTAL: 1783 calories burned

Thursday, July 3, 2008

Short, but good

30 minutes, weights: 433 cals. (approx.)
30 minutes, elliptical: 300 cals.

TOTAL: 733 calories burned

Wednesday, July 2, 2008


So, I was a bit apprehensive about my doctor's visit this morning, largely because I was concerned that my glucose level had gone up or, at the very least, had not gone down. I wasn't sure if my recent trip to Europe would have affected my blood levels, since I did allow myself to have some desserts and a Guinness or two. I worried for nothing.
  • My triglycerides went from 345 down to 197 (they should be <150)
  • My cholesterol went from 226 down to 175 (it should be between 125-200). My HDL (good cholesterol) is 50 (should be >40), and my LDL (bad cholesterol) is 86 (should be <130).
  • My glucose dropped from 122 to 116 (it should be between 65-99, but Dr. F said as long as it continues to drop, I won't need to consider diabetes meds -- YES!)
Plus, he said, "Have you lost, like, twenty pounds?" I know that's not true, but he was pleasantly surprised to see the difference since March.

All of this just validates what I am doing, making me more sure than ever that I can keep this going. This visit today has made me happier than I have been in a long time. If Dr. F was impressed with these results, wait until September. :)

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Killer workout tonight

35 min. on treadmill (500 calories)
30 min. weights (433 calories approx.)
65 min. elliptical (800 calories)

Total: 1733 calories.

Sunday, June 29, 2008

Adding more

One hour, five minutes of elliptical; 20 minutes of intense weights; 20 minutes of treadmill: 1329 cals.

I get my blood work results on Wednesday. I'm not anticipating any problems.

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Mixing it up a bit...

I did the weights first for about 30 minutes, then one hour on the elliptical, for approx. 1293 calories burned.

I also had my blood work done today, and I go back next week for the numbers. Let's hope that it'll all be okay. :)

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Another gym'ming with Jim...

415 cals. elliptical. 401 cals. treadmill. 200+ cals. weights.

Saturday, June 21, 2008

I have returned.

862 cals. from elliptical, 289 cals. on weights (approximately). It felt great to be back in the gym after being in England, Ireland, and Wales since June 9. I maintained my weight throughout the sojourn abroad, which makes me feel good that I could eat healthy food when not at home.

I have my blood work appointment on June 25, so let's hope that my glucose has dropped. I think it should have, but one never knows until the vampire has done his job and taken vials of life force from me.

Running should commence in the next day or so, weather permitting. I need to get back into my routine.

Sunday, June 8, 2008

Gym'ming with Jim

So, my partner, Jim, joined Anytime Fitness and went with me last night. He rode the recumbent bike and used the treadmill, but left before I was done with my workout (810 cals on the elliptical; about 200 cals on the weights).

I'm heading to Europe tonight, London first. I'll hopefully be doing enough walking that will make a difference since I won't be able to run or go to a gym. Perhaps climbing around the castles and landscape of Ireland will help burn cals.

See you after June 19. Cheerio!

Thursday, June 5, 2008


825 on the elliptical; 200+ on weights. 'Nuff said.

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

More, more, more...

825 calories on elliptical; about 1200+ overall with weights and machines. Running will commence upon my return from Europe in June.

Sunday, June 1, 2008

More gym time...

1:05 on the elliptical (825 calories), then about fifteen minutes on the machines, so probably >1000 calories burned. I'll probably run after I get back from Europe since it's just too humid to run outside.

Thursday, May 29, 2008

Yeah, yeah... I know.

I've actually been to the gym since my last post, but I didn't post it. Sue me. Tonight, I did the elliptical for an hour and 20 minutes of weights... about 1200 calories burned.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Finally! Gym time...

818 calories. 1 hour. Elliptical.

Exams are almost over, so my time will be my own again.

Need. To. Run.


Monday, May 12, 2008

Another gym day in fun city...

819 calories. 1 hour. Elliptical.
200+ calories. 15 minutes. Intense weights.

Present weight: 187 lbs.

Sunday, May 11, 2008

Simply a calorie burn...

Nothing more. My heart wasn't into it today, but I did do it, although it took 1:22. Hey, I burned almost 1100 calories doing it, so it wasn't a waste; it just wasn't a record-breaker.

There's always next time.

Saturday, May 10, 2008

The whole point of routines...

is that they WORK. When you break routine, it changes your whole outlook.

I haven't run in a week, but I have been to the gym a few times, using the treadmill once and the elliptical twice. I just didn't blog it. Quite frankly, I have been so mentally drained that taking the time to blog hasn't been a priority. When I set time for me, it means I think about what's best for me (the only person who can do that).

This week also has been about trying to make better food choices. With Teacher Appreciation Week, almost every morning, we've had some kind of breakfast, mostly loaded down with muffins, bagels, rugelach, granola--you name it. Whatever kind of carb there is, we had it. We had some fruit, but we didn't get the bulk of that until yesterday morning. I tried to eat well, but I had my piece of "appreciation" cake or some cake and ice cream with lunch earlier in the week. I did eat well at home, but school was all about stress eating. When it was available, I ate salad or vegetables.

I can't really blame anything. It was ME. I need to make better choices all the time, not just when it's easy. I'm going to be in Europe for 12 days, completely out of my routine, and I need to make sure I watch what I eat because I have a doctor's appointment in June. I don't want my glucose to be so high that the doctor needs to put me on diabetes medicine. I just can't allow that. And, it's all in MY control.

Working out at the gym has increased over the weeks, so that'll help me, but I have to be more diligent about what I eat.

I recently posted a quote for my students that said:

"Everything we do is a choice; choices have consequences. Choose wisely."

I just need to just that.

Saturday, May 3, 2008

Not a bad run...

25:11... ONE minute shy of my previous time, but hey, it's still less. I found that wearing a white running shirt actually helped (even though it wasn't Hades-like conditions outside) so when the sun was beating down on my back, I didn't overheat. My next thing is to get the Halo Headband (bandanna style), which apparently has something in the headband which channels sweat away from your face. As I don't have any hair on top, nothing prevents the cascading perspiration from falling down into my eyes. So, once I take care of that, I shouldn't have any more running issues.

I'm gearing up for my Europe trip in a few weeks (June 9), and I have to be careful about what I eat. Having been to Ireland, I know what's available, but I'll just have to watch when I am in England and Wales. When we're in Galway, my favorite city in Ireland, I know Shop Street very well, so I can find something to eat during our free time. As it's a tour, we'll be walking every single moment of the day (that we're not on a bus or a ferry), so I hope that I can keep my weight the same. No gym, but push ups and crunches will help.

Exams start next week, so my schedule changes a bit. When I proctor, I think I can actually run in the morning, since I won't have to plan for any classes. When I do have classes, I'm giving them work to help carry them through the rest of the year. My IB classes will be taking exams four days this coming week and four days the following week; this Friday will be a review day. Next Friday (May 16)? I'm not going to reveal what I have planned just yet. The following week (the last full week before their last day) I will be showing a movie based on a book we read. My AP classes will have the work I am giving them to do, so I hope it will keep them focused. It's not busy work, which I abhor, but more to keep their literary chops honed.

Mentally, I think we're all done. But, we all have to get to May 28, and then the angels will sing, trumpets will blare, the clouds will part, and the rays of freedom will shine down upon us.

Heh. I love melodrama. :)