Go. Be a Shark.

imageHappy Halloween everybody! This is a cool photo, huh? Kinda Halloweeny, yet evocative all at the same time. Today was the first time I ever went swimming on Halloween, in an outdoor pool no less. But it’s warm and sunny here. Totally fantastic pool weather.

When I woke up early this morning, I really just wanted to go back to sleep. But I thought of a couple of long-term goals, so I got myself motivated. The class was good, the water felt silky to my skin, and the spooky music was appropriate for the day. So it was fun! I missed my partner-in-crime, who wasn’t able to go to class, but we’ll see each other tomorrow at the gym.

When I returned home, I discovered that one long-term goal wasn’t viable after all. It was a bit of a blow. Why do men lie so much? Just to get what they want at that moment? I guess. But that’s OK. I’ll just replace it/him with another, better goal.

Diane, a gal in my aerobics class, and I were joking in the pool today about being like a shark. Just keep moving and you won’t die. And boy, is that apropos of so many things. Go. Be a shark.

I Redeemed my reward for hitting my first big goal!

Almost nothing beats a massage.

Almost nothing beats a massage.

Yep, I got a massage Friday. It wasn’t bad, considering it only cost $25 for the hour. The first time I went to this place, over a year ago, I had my own room. But this time, I shared the room with a male client. However we were separated by a curtain and I kept on my shorts. Interestingly enough, the male client must have gotten very relaxed because soon he was snoring!

I had PT for my knee before my massage. My knee was definitely still swollen from Thursday. So, I was urged to get an MRI done; hence the call to make an appointment with an orthopedic surgeon. (I already had the referral.) We need to know what’s going on in there. Hopefully, it’s just osteoarthritis.

Since my leg buckled again when I was at the massage therapist, I made sure I called for an appointment when I got home. I am going early Monday morning. I’m going to try to get my X-rays from Magnolia Imaging tomorrow after my deep water aerobics class. But I think my prospects are dim. (See previous post… Oh, and btw, I found out that the imaging center was still open when I had called, but they didn’t bother picking up. I have had that problem with them before.)

I also iced my swollen knee, elevated it, and gave it a rest. So the only exercise I did today was when I was getting PT for my knee. I was moving around, but it certainly wasn’t cardio.

LMAO! And They’re Still In Business-??

imageWhat just happened on the phone has me laughing out loud… First of all, my left knee is still swollen. Like the size of the top of a small tennis ball. I was able to make an appointment for early this Monday morning with an orthopedic surgeon to discuss my knee issues. There was a cancellation, so I got in right away. However, they also asked me to bring in my knee x-rays. Well, I couldn’t remember the name of the place where I had gone to get the X-rays done or the phone number, so I had to call my PA’s office. By the time I made all these phone calls, it was a minute past 5. I was forced to leave a message at the imaging center.

Now here’s the funny part: their outgoing message instructed me to leave my contact information and someone will… (pause)… EVENTUALLY get back to me!

Ooh, boy! Hey, at least they own up to their shortcomings.

Body Aches

imageFelt fine this morning, until I stepped over something. My left knee buckled. Again. I soon left for my PT appointment for my low back.

Grrr. Left knee swelling. Was at PT for low back, but wasn’t there very long as I couldn’t do all the exercises. Asked for ice for my left knee. So I was on my back getting TENS (Transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation) for low back and ice on left knee. This place only treats my back but since the left knee was visibly swollen, I was able to get it iced too. And my back is super-sensitive to the TENS today. 20 is hard to take. Usually I can handle 22 with no problem. Made that massage appointment for tomorrow!

I had to use my cane while returning something at Kohl’s. Iced knee again at home, but still pretty swollen. I’m not a happy camper.

Prevent Illness Through Diet

imageImportant info for everyone to prevent heart disease, diabetes, arthritis, depression, Alzheimer’s and cancer. Since these foods fight inflammation, i would imagine that it will help those with fibro, lupus and other auto-immune diseases to feel better.

I’ve been feeling so much better since I started eating clean. The only packaged food I still eat is cereal. I recently found an organic cereal that is very low in sugar; I’ll post about that in a minute. I buy Greek yogurt. The healthiest is low-fat/non-fat plain Greek yogurt. When I get tired of that, I switch to Oikos Triple Zero Greek Yogurt.

Look for organic and non-GMO foods. STOP eating processed foods. No frozen meals, microwaveable dinners, pre-cooked rotisserie chickens (check the ingredients; often a whole bunch of junk is added to them). Fast food is unhealthy and is way too high in sodium.

No sodas. I used to buy Bai5 because I really wanted the sweet flavors. But now, all I drink is water (and coffee in the morning so I can wake up.)

Basically what this boils down to is: buy fresh veggies and cook!

Massage is Bliss

A massage sounds like HEAVEN.

A massage sounds like HEAVEN.

I think I deserve a full body MASSAGE, don’t you? When I was playing a lot of tennis with my pal, Jim, I got massages often. Dan was a great massage therapist. He’d work out the knots I’d accumulate during the week. Never got injured playing tennis.

Dan didn’t believe in deep tissue massage. When I asked him why, he replied with a question of his own. He asked me what was my reaction when I felt pain during a massage. My response was that I’d tighten up. Exactly, he replied. Tightening up was the antithesis of what we were trying to accomplish. But still, to this day, whenever my gluts are massaged, even with the slightest pressure, I’m off the table. I’m not sure where all this pain comes from… But ow! It hurts!

Anyway, I worked out a lot this week. 7 days/week. And if you want to see what I did during the 2 hrs, 15 minutes we were at the gym today, find Sunday night’s post that gives you the deets.

Day 7 Outta 7 Workout

Well, boys and girls, Becky and I went to the gym for 135 minutes today. (That translates to 2 hrs., 15 minutes.) First off, no laughing from you shredded hunks out there. I know my weights are on the low side right now, but I’m improving all the time. Once my knees get stronger, I’ll be able to put more weight on the Leg Press. And this was the first day I attempted Seated Calf Raises. I hope I was doing them right. Becky felt it in her calfs. I mostly felt it in my quads. My poor, weak quads.

Anyway, I’ve been wanting to keep track of the strength machines and weight/set for awhile. I didn’t think I could do it using My Fitness Pal; however, a friend, Nora, suggested that I check into it a bit more. I did, and lo and behold, I discovered she was right! So Becky and I thank you, Nora!


I’ve included a screen shot of all the machines I did today. We did 14 strength machines, plus we did 35 minutes of cardio on the stationary bike after the strengthening exercises. I also went up a level, from 4 to 5 on the bike. Wednesday, I’m going up to level 6, as 5 was too easy. And I downloaded another app, Record, that works with MFP and counts calories burned on machines. I just have to finish setting it up.

We sure had a lot of fun! We worked our asses off, but we enjoyed every minute of it. Woot!

Predicament Solved… or Won’t You Lay Me Down in the Tall Grass and Let Me Do My Stuff?

imageI was in such a quandary today. Women, I’m sure you can all relate. I had a pedi this morning. I now had silky smooth legs… But if I did aqua aerobics, my legs would get dried out. And I couldn’t go to the gym today. So what’s a girl to do?

I decided to walk around my complex, and then do all my PT exercises. No way was I gonna skip a day, since today is Day 5 in my 7-Day/Week Exercise Regime.

First, I worked on my triceps, then I walked around my complex. I carried my iPhone with me, blaring Fleetwood Mac. Rhiannon and Don’t Stop served as my warm-up, but then Second Hand News started playing. Naturally, I began walking much faster, in rhythm to the music. And of course, I had to sing along, especially when it came to my favorite line, “Won’t you lay me down in the tall grass and let me do my stuff.” Sexy line!

I walked 25 minutes. Gonna do PT exercises a bit later. I can’t wait until my left knee heals. Hey, if you had been constantly tackled at the knees by a 75 lb. female golden retriever (cuz she thought it was funny to bring Mom down) ten years ago, your knee wouldn’t be tracking properly either. Right? That girl must have thought she was tryin’ out for the Patriots, or somethin’.

Once the knee gets a little better, and I can wear something slinky, it’d be fun to go clubbing again. I just love to dance.

Personal Victories

imageMy plan was to post this Wednesday night, but I was catching up with friends after my workout. So here’s my personal fitness update for Wednesday.

Becky, my partner in crime, and I met at the gym for our usual Wednesday night workout. We started off with some arms, worked on hip abducters, and quads. I had to work carefully because of my knees. But hey, if anyone has some tips to strengthen the quads, yet not put too much stress on the knees, LMK! We finished up with 30 minutes of cardio. Becky had to leave after that, but I stayed on by myself.

I worked on abs… Just love that ab crunch machine! I set the weight for that and for the back extension machine at 70 lbs. That’s my personal best so far. Considering in May that I was doubting I even had abs, this is pretty cool.

Then I worked on arm curls, and other arm machines. Then I figured out the machine that deals with the rear deltoids and the pec fly, all by my lonesome! I know, it’s not a big deal to all you buff, shredded people out there, but for me, it was a minor victory.

Another personal victory? I worked out for two hours, surpassing last Saturday’s workout by a half hour. So this week has already proven to be a week of firsts, starting out with working out 7 days/week. In fact, Becky and I will do deep water aerobics on Saturday and then we’re adding on an extra day at the gym on Sunday. So this means two days at the gym and five days doing deep water aerobics, plus PT. I’ve added new machines to my repertoire, have upped many of the weights on the existing machines, and Becky and I are now doing three reps of 15 instead of two.

So yeah, what with the strides in strength and endurance, plus the encouragement and kind words from my friends, all this has helped to keep me motivated. And another thing? I’m enjoying the heck out of it!

Low Glycemic Load Diet

I love potatoes, but sadly, since I'm pre-diabetic, I can't eat any.

I love potatoes, but since I’m pre-diabetic, I don’t eat any.

Hmmm… A low glycemic load diet is healthy as it prevents your glucose levels from spiking, which is good for everyone to follow. But if you’re pre-diabetic or diabetic, it’s essential that you stick to foods that have a low glycemic load. And if you’re 45 years old or older, are overweight, and especially if you carry any belly fat, it’s healthier to be on a low-glycemic load diet.

This article covers some good information, but it is missing some key elements. First of all, it’s more accurate to follow a low glycemic LOAD diet as opposed to a low glycemic INDEX diet. AND always eat a protein and a healthy fat at the same time you’re eating ANY carbs.

Non-starchy veggies are very nutritious, for example, especially roasted or grilled. But, throw some feta cheese on top, and not only has the taste improved, but you’ve just added some additional protein. Even though non-starchy vegetables are low in calories and carbs, it’s good to get in the habit of always eating a balanced meal.

Feta, part-skim mozzarella, and Parmesan cheeses are cheeses that are low in fat. Most cheese has too much fat, however, so if you’re trying to lose weight, cutting down on fat and cholesterol, or trying to obtain those shredded abs, skip the higher fat cheeses and stick to these low-fat cheeses. Goat cheese is yummy, but since it has more fat than feta, eat sparingly.

Here’s a list of low glycemic load foods, but if you’re concerned about your glucose levels, be sure to choose foods listed at 10 or under. Stay away from bananas and raisins, for example, and remember an average baked russet potato is 33. WAY too high. That’s why pre-diabetics like me can’t eat potatoes.

Oh, and here’s an important tip for the 45-year-old and older crowd… If you haven’t had a full blood panel done in over a year, please do so. That’s the time when metabolic changes can hit suddenly, and you could become pre-diabetic and not even know it. Believe me, taking preventive measures is so much easier than dealing with treatment measures.

I refuse to become diabetic. The last thing I want is to have to check my blood sugar daily, inject myself with glucose daily, be on a more restrictive diet than I already am, and be worried about nerve pain, or losing my eyesight or toes. No thank you! So I’m going to lose a lot more weight, get down to a BMI between 15-20%, exercise 5 times/week, and I plan on eating a low-glycemic load diet for the rest of my life.

I’m going to stare diabetes dead in the face, challenge it, and beat it. Plus, I’m going to enjoy the hell outta the added bonus of looking dead sexy for a 59/60-year-old, too. Now that’s a win-win I can wrap my head around!

Today’s Weight Loss Update: 35 lbs. Oh, btw, I’m already exercising 5 times/week. Woot!