Monday, December 31, 2012

Day 171 - New Year's Eve!

Happy New Year’s Eve!!  Today really went by quickly.  I had to work, but it still felt like a holiday.  And, I had so much to cram in, I ran out of time!

The good news is that I had an appointment with the orthopedist today.  He said the MRI came back and didn’t show anything more serious that arthritis in the knee.  He thinks I just strained/sprained the knee.  I need to be careful with it, but no major injury.  I am very relieved!  So, I am cleared to go back to exercising, as long as it doesn’t hurt.  I will have a follow-up with him in three weeks.  Not bad!

The challenge today was definitely getting in two hours on the bike.  With everything else going on, it was a super busy day.  But, somehow I managed.  It felt good to move, even if I was being a little cautious.

The surprise today was that Michael had more ups than downs today.  We ended up going out to see the Winter Lights one last time, and then I took him into the hyperbaric chamber for a long dive before bedtime.  It wasn’t very exciting, but it was good.  I would have preferred to go to a family party but he just wasn’t up for that, and to be honest, I don’t think I was either.  Sometimes a quiet night at home is a good thing.

Now, I need to wrap this up in time for a midnight smooch with Steve.  Happy New Year!!!!


Sunday, December 30, 2012

Day 170 - And Up and Down Day

Today was a pretty good day.  I was able to sleep in this morning when Steve took Michael to Whole Foods early.  That was nice.  Then, I was able to do some filing that I have been putting off for months.  I guess not being able to move around much does have some benefits!

The challenge today was deciding whether or not I should exercise, and how much to do.  I ended up doing an hour on the bike, but was pretty sore afterwards. So, I decided to keep it to just the one hour today.  I always have a battle with myself trying to decide if I’m being lazy or smart.  But, when I stood up and Steve heard my knee pop across the house, I knew I made the right decision.

The surprise today was having fun with Michael just hanging out and playing.  We played wii u, and I supervised his exercise.  It was a nice afternoon.  Of course, we had a major meltdown tonight, but I’m choosing to not focus on that.  And, at least it was over (mostly) in time to watch most of the Redskins/Cowboy game.  It’s been a touch and go night, but it could definitely be worse.

Saturday, December 29, 2012

Day 169 - Twenty Four Week Results

The year is coming to a close, and I’ve been on this journey for 24 weeks now.  It’s so hard to believe that the changes I’ve made really are becoming part of my life.  I look at today’s progress picture and can really see a huge difference.  I actually have collar bones!  I am so thankful for every pound lost – forty three of them so far.  It just makes me smile to think about.

The challenge today was getting exercise in despite my knee.  It felt a lot better today, so I did two hour long sessions on the bike.  I was very careful to make sure that it didn’t hurt, and I didn’t push myself very hard.  But, I did want to get the exercise in.  I also went for an MRI on the knee.  I have a follow up appointment with the orthopedist on Monday, so hopefully I’ll have some answers then.  Until then, I’m just going to be careful with my knee and do the best I can.

The surprise today was just seeing the progress picture and realizing that all this hard work really is paying off.  I slog through day by day, and I try to make as many good decisions as possible.  But, I get caught up in the numbers on the scale and lose track of the bigger picture.  Today, seeing a smaller picture really did bring home that it is working.  I am getting smaller.  And, even though it’s a goofy smile, I’m happy.  That’s a great way to end the year!

Friday, December 28, 2012

Day 168 - An appt with the Orthopedist

I saidyesterday that my knee was really acting up.  After spending a most of the night in pain and being barely able to get down the stairs this morning, I was lucky enough to get an appointment with the orthopedist this morning.  He thinks that I might have a torn meniscus, and I have an MRI scheduled for tomorrow.  He said that if I wanted to, and it didn’t hurt, I could do half an hour on the bike.  But, even that was too much for me today.  I think I am going to play it really safe for the next couple days and see what happens with the MRI and my follow up appt on Monday.

The challenge is that this couldn’t be happening at a worse time.  Every year I make a New Year’s Resolution to really get with my program and lose weight.  Most years I fail miserably.  This year, I’ve come so far already, I was really looking forward to recommitting myself to losing weight and getting healthy.  Now, I’m not sure what is up with my knee, and I am in a lot of pain.  But, no matter what happens, I refuse to give up.
The surprise of the day was just how supportive Steve is.  It really isn’t much of a surprise, but is greatly appreciated.  He always takes good care of me and supports me.  Today, he spent hours going all over the county trying to find me a knee brace.  He wasn’t able to find one, but I really appreciate how hard he looked.  And, we can order one online, but it probably makes sense to wait and see what the doctor says on Monday.  Something tells me this is going to be a long weekend.

Thursday, December 27, 2012

Day 167 - More Knee Pain

My knee has been really unhappy today.  It’s been popping and cracking on and off all day, and putting weight on it isn’t always a good thing.  I was still able to ride the bike, but not much more than that.  I have heard that the bike is good for knee pain.  But, I’m not completely convinced.
The challenge of the day was trying to figure out what’s going on with my knee.  You would think after all this time, it would be fine.  I expected problems when I first started exercising, not five months in!  But, I guess I forgot to tell my knee.  I am hoping it’s better tomorrow.

The surprise of the day was Michael.  He has been having such a good time playing with his furby and the rabids game he got for Christmas.  It’s so nice to see him enjoying age appropriate humor.  Even if a lot of it is potty humor and other jokes designed for a ten year old boy.  It’s appropriate, and it makes me happy.

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Day 166 - Modify and Move On!

Merry Christmas!  I’m really glad I decided to take a few days off and enjoy the holiday.  We went to PA to spend time with my family, and it was really, really good.  Michael loved seeing everyone, and so did I.  And, Santa was more than generous with all of us.  We ended up coming home a day earlier than planned because of weather, but it worked out.

The challenge today was associated with the weather.  I wasn’t sure if I would make it to the gym for my two classes tonight, so I hedged my bet by riding the bike for an hour this afternoon.  I was actually feeling a little antsy after taking a couple days off, and really needed to move.  Then, the weather warmed up enough that it was safe to go to the gym, and I ended up getting in a total of three hours today.
The surprise of the day was mostly that I made it through all three hours.  Although, my knee is really sore tonight.  It was great to move, and even better to realize that I actually missed it.  It felt amazing to be able to do some of the more complicated moves during the muscle challenge class.  And, even though my knee was throbbing by the time yoga was really started, I was happy that I could make enough modifications to keep going.  Modify and move on.  My new mantra!

Sunday, December 23, 2012

Day 163 - Taking a few days off

I think for Christmas I'm going to take a couple days off.  I need to think through some things and take some pressure off myself.  I'll be back at it on Wednesday, hopefully recharged and ready to go.

Saturday, December 22, 2012

Day 162 - 23 Week Results

I’m really, really, really frustrated tonight.  I’ve been really good this week and I’m up a pound and a half this week.  I don’t understand it.  I have a good theory that it’s related to yet another new medication that I started this week.  I hate that every time I start something new, it seems like it takes a couple weeks to get used to it.  I hate that I’ve been working so hard and still gained weight this week.  I just want to hide in a corner and cry.

I’m thinking the challenge today was definitely getting past the weigh in this morning and dragging my butt to yoga when all I wanted to do was cry.  But, I did.  I went to yoga and I did an hour on the bike.  I’m going on the theory that I will keep doing what I have been doing and that it will work out in the end.  I just need to force myself to keep positive and not allow myself the pity party I really, really want.
The surprise of the day was when we had our Christmas with my MIL.  It was a really nice afternoon.  We played games on the wii for a while, had dinner, and exchanged presents.  Michael actually liked his presents and had to make a thank you call right away when he opened his furby.  My MIL gave him a bird bingo game and we actually played two games.  It was just nice.

Overall, it was a good day.  I just wish I could not obsess on the scale so I could enjoy it more.  Have any of you used prog-x cream before?  Did it affect your weight when you first started it?  Can someone tell me it’s all going to be ok?

Friday, December 21, 2012

Day 161 - Something new at yoga

Today was a good day with challenging moments.  I was able to get to my favorite yoga class, and it had a great surprise.  Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to get on the bike today.  I have a valid reason that I don’t really want to get into, so you’ll just have to trust me on this one. 
The challenge today was trying to decide if that reason was valid.  Steve pointed out that we have a three hour drive coming up and that I needed to be injury free for the trip.  That confirmed for me that I really needed to take it easy today and just do my yoga class that I knew was safe.

When I got to yoga tonight, there was a surprise.  The instructor said that she wanted to try something new – standing sun salutations using the wall.  I was really nervous to try it since sun salutations are usually really hard for me.  So hard, in fact, that I can’t keep up with them.  But, this was a modification so that the entire sequence was done standing, using the wall for support.  The premise was very similar to doing push ups against a wall.  I loved it!  I was able to get the benefits of doing the sequence, but I was able to keep up, and my knees didn’t hurt!  So, as skeptical as I was, I am so happy she tried this!
And, the whole experience gave me more insight into Michael.  He has always been afraid of new things.  Even when we promise him he will like it, he doesn’t believe us until he’s experienced it.  That is exactly how I was tonight.  As soon as I heart ‘sun salutation’ I was afraid.  As soon as we went through the whole sequence, I relaxed.  Once we did it twice, I was hooked.  I guess that apple really doesn’t fall too far from the tree!

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Day 160 - Just Yoga Today

OK, so I don’t do very well on Thursdays.  I got home from work pretty tired, had laundry to fold, a kid to get showered, and other stuff that just needed to be done.  I did make it to yoga, and had a great workout.  But, that only made for a bit over an hour of exercise.  So, I’m a little short for the day, but it’s honestly the best I could do today.  I need to figure out a better plan for Thursdays.
The challenge today was once again a really stressful day at work.  It feels like I am just running in circles trying to get things done.  And everything takes longer than it should.  But, I guess everyone deals with work stress.

The surprise of the day was getting a note from Michael’s teacher saying that he had a really good day at school.  It was a really nice surprise.  Plus, he was in a good mood for the whole evening.  A good day at school is rare.  A calm evening is pretty rare, too.  A combination of both is pretty much unheard of.  I am hoping this portends well for the holiday break.

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Day 159 - Feeling Good at the Gym

Today was a really, really long day.  It was a nice break to get out to the gym and exercise.  And, I had two really good workouts. 

The challenge today was not letting the stress get to me.  There were so many points during the day that I just wanted to go find some chocolate or something really carby.  I didn’t, but it was really hard.
The surprise came during the warm up for my muscle challenge class.  During the cardio part tonight I realized that I was actually enjoying the movement and I’m getting better at it!  I’m still not especially coordinated, but the music was great and it felt really good to move.  That was just what I needed tonight.

I am hoping tomorrow is a less stressful day, but I am not holding my breath.  Have a good night!


Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Day 158 - Winter Lights!

I debated whether or not I wanted to keep today as a rest day, or try to sneak in a workout.  But, I had late meetings and didn’t get home until after 6.   Then, we took Michael to see the winter lights.  That pretty much made the decision for me.  But, I think it worked out for the best.  I’m still sniffly and stuffy, so having a day to rest sounds like a good thing.
The challenge of the day was just dealing with meetings all day long and getting home late.  I was really lucky in that Steve made dinner for me so I wasn’t starving and having to face an empty kitchen.  It makes all the difference in the world to have someone watching out for me and making sure I have everything I need to succeed.

The surprise of the day was how much Michael enjoyed the winter lights.  We go every year, a couple times each season.  I love how each year he tells us more about what’s going on in each of the exhibits.  And, I love the silly things that we say over and over each year.  It’s a nice tradition and really makes the holidays special.  I love this time of year!


Monday, December 17, 2012

Day 157 - Happy to be Back at the Gym!

I did it!  I got back to the gym tonight!  The hardest part was convincing myself I was ready, and then not giving up during the cardio warm up.  With my lungs so sore, the cardio part was definitely hard.  But, once I got started, I did OK.  I am so glad that I went, even if I am going to be really sore tomorrow.

The challenge was definitely getting to the gym.  Today was the first day that I felt even close to better, and I was still coughing a lot.  But, it was really important to me that I get back on track, so I went.
The surprise was how I felt once I got started.  I really didn’t expect to have such a good workout, but I did.  And, yoga felt really good.  It was a nice, relaxing pace, but still really challenging.  Again, I’m not sure how I am going to feel in the morning, but for tonight, I’m really happy.

Even with all that said, I think I’m going to go to bed early tonight.  Maybe after a nice hot shower!


Sunday, December 16, 2012

Day 156 - Tired of Being Sick

Well, I was told that I wasn’t looking healthy enough to take a picture, but I did get on the scale this morning.  The good news is that I am actually down a pound, for a total of 43 pounds down.  I’m really annoyed that I haven’t been able to exercise, but happy to have finally broken through the plateau I’ve been at the last couple weeks.  Hopefully, it’s a good sign! 

Saturday, December 15, 2012

Day 155 - Still Sick

I’m still really sick with a bad cold.  I can’t breathe, much less exercise.  I’ve pretty much spent the day sitting under a warm blanket.  But, I am hoping to feel better tomorrow.  If so, I’ll post a new picture and results tomorrow. 

Friday, December 14, 2012

Day 154 - So sick, so sad

I have no words tonight.  I am so incredibly sad over the events in CT. I have been sick with a cold all day today, and literally have no voice.  I didn’t exercise mostly because of the cold, but I am not sure I could have anyway. Tomorrow is another day. Hopefully it will be a better day, somehow.

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Day 153 - Challenges and Strength

Today was a surprising day.  Michael was home sick and Steve had an appointment this afternoon.  So, I came home at lunch time and worked from home for the rest of the day.  I thought I would have plenty of time to get some time in on the bike, but the afternoon really got away from me.  The good news is that I did end up getting in 45 minutes on the bike, and a full hour yoga class.  Not too bad for a very strange day.

The challenge of the day was putting all the different pieces together and staying coherent.  Between Michael not feeling well, work projects going nuts, and Steve’s commitments, it was really hard to get everything in.  I am actually really happy that I got as much exercise in today. 

The surprise of the day was between the bike and yoga.  We had a conference call this evening with Michael’s teacher, in lieu of an in person parent/teacher meeting.  It was a lot easier to do by phone, and worked out really well.  I am so proud of how well Michael is doing in school.  It is still amazing to me that he is fully on grade level and making great grades.  Every time I think about it, I smile.  He has so many challenges ahead of him, but he has come a really long way already.
Whenever I get down about my journey, I think about Michael and how well he handles everything thrown at him.  He doesn’t always handle things gracefully, but he bounces back really quickly.  If I can do half as well, I’ll be happy.

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Day 152 - Low key evening at the gym

Tonight at the gym was a little more low key than usual.  Kathy, who normally teaches the muscle challenge class, was out so we had a sub.  The sub was great, but it was definitely not as intense as normal.  But, since I was still sore from Monday, I was honestly happy for a bit of a break.  Then, yoga was just a little more calm.  Or, maybe it was just me.  Either way, I got two good workouts in, but I don’t feel completely dead.  It’s not what I would want all the time, but it’s a nice change.

The challenge today was not losing my temper at work.  I am in the middle of this huge project and some things are just not working right.  No matter how many times I ask for the technical people to help, they just can’t seem to get this one interface working.  It’s driving me nuts.  But, we will get there.  I hope.

The surprise of the day was coming home to see the 121212 concert.  I had forgotten about it.  I haven’t heard some of these songs in a long, long time.  It’s bringing back a lot of good memories.  I feel terrible for the hurricane victims, and hope they raise a ton of money tonight.  But, I am definitely enjoying the music!

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Day 151 - So Tired. So, so tired.

Wow, today was an incredibly busy day.  I left the house at 6:45 and didn’t get back until after 9:45.  I had a full day of work and then went to a DDA briefing.  I am so glad it was a rest day, even if I never got a chance to rest.

The challenge of the day was just being overly exhausted.  I am definitely sore from my classes yesterday, and didn’t get a lot of sleep last night.  But, I am going to get to bed soon so I can get almost a full night’s sleep tonight.

The surprise of the day was that Michael came home from school and told Steve about a diorama he was working on.  It’s very rare that he will share details from his day, and it’s really extra special when he does.

Sorry for this being so short and disjointed, but I am tired.  Tomorrow will be a better day!


Monday, December 10, 2012

Day 150 - Wow. Just. Wow.

I’m sitting here beyond exhausted, every muscle is aching, and I don’t know how I’m going to drag myself up the stairs.  But, I’m happy.  I had two of the best exercise sessions I’ve had in weeks tonight.  I was able to push myself further than I have ever, and I was able to do some poses in yoga that I’ve never done before.  Maybe this change in medication is starting to work.  Maybe the hard work over the last few months is starting to pay off.  Either way, I’m completely worn out, but very happy.

The challenge of the day was just forcing myself through the day.  Mondays are always difficult, but today it just seemed really hard to get started.  I think that’s what I really appreciate most about this blog, and you who read it.  If I didn’t have the accountability, it would be so easy to miss a workout.  And, if I had missed tonight, I really would have missed out.

The surprise was definitely in yoga.  There was one pose where we started out in pigeon, then bent and grabbed the back leg.  I was able to do that.  Of course, when she said to raise up the front hand, I laughed out loud.  But, I think even the instructor was a little impressed with how far I had actually gotten.  One day I will get all the way there.  Tonight I actually feel confident that I am making progress and I will be able to do things that were completely impossible when I first started.  That’s a great feeling.

Sunday, December 9, 2012

Day 149 - Where does the weekend go?

This weekend went by so fast!  I can’t believe it’s Sunday night already.  A lot of good things happened to friends of mine in the last few days, so that is wonderful.  I just wish the weekend could last just a tiny bit longer.
I had a lot of stuff to do around the house today, so I just did two separate hours on the bike.  It gave me a break from everything else, and got the job done.  I like simple things on busy days.

The challenge of the day was that Michael was especially moody today.  I’m not quite sure why.  He was so excited to go to KEEN Music today, but then when he got there, he didn’t want to participate and just sat by himself.  Then, he was cranky for the rest of the day.  Not sure what’s going on, but hoping it’s temporary.
The surprise of the day was that I got to sleep in, and actually felt rested.  It was so nice.  I remember when I could sleep until noon on the weekend and not think twice about it.  Now, every extra second of sleep is a true gift.  But, I guess there is something to be said for having a full life, too.  Probably not printable, but something. 

Saturday, December 8, 2012

Day 148 - Twenty One Week Results

I’m kinda disappointed with the results this week.  I stayed exactly the same.  I guess on one hand, I should be happy that I didn’t gain anything.  I know I’ve been whining a lot about the doctor changing my medicine, but it really has been fairly major.  I think I’m starting to get used to it, but I’m not sure if I feel like I’m supposed to.  I guess by this time next week I’ll know for sure.
The challenge today was just a stress level.  I was really disappointed when I got on the scale this morning, and it carried over more than it should have.  I didn’t get as much accomplished as I had hoped, but at least I did get my exercise in.

The surprise was that I actually enjoyed the yoga class at the ‘new’ gym this morning.  It was more active than some of the more relaxing classes, but not so demanding that I couldn’t keep up.  It was actually a very nice balance.  Then, I did an hour on the bike, and was proud of myself for getting both hours in relatively early in the day.
This week I am really going to focus on making the changes the doctor recommended, following through on the order, and hoping to see a good number on the scale next week.

Friday, December 7, 2012

Day 147 - Friday, Yoga, and a Surprise

Today was another busy day.  I had an appointment at lunch time so I couldn’t exercise during the day.  But, I did make it to my favorite yoga class of the week.  That was a really good thing.  Then, I came home and got set up for the evening.  I managed to do 45 minutes on the bike before I realized I didn’t have anything left.  I figured that an hour and 45 minutes was probably good enough for the day and left it at that.  It was probably a good thing.  With the change in my medication this week I have definitely not felt 100% myself.  I’m not trying to make excuses, but I don’t want to do anything silly either.

The challenge today was making the decision to stop at 45 minutes on the bike.  I was really, really tired and just felt like pushing more wasn’t going to get me any more progress.  It’s hard for me to always tell the difference between listening to my body and slacking off.  But, since it was only 15 minutes, it’s not the end of the world either way.  But, I do think I made the right decision.

The surprise of the day was a really, really good one.  I had gone to yoga and was just getting settled in on my mat when I saw someone out of the corner of my eye.  My cousin was there!  I have really missed working out with her the last few weeks.  She hasn’t been able to get out and it just hasn’t been as much fun without her.  So, having her there tonight was a wonderful surprise and really made my evening.
It’s weekend.  I am so happy to be able to go to bed early tonight, sleep in tomorrow, and have a great weekend.  No matter what happens, weekends are always good.  Enjoy!


Thursday, December 6, 2012

Day 146 - A Long, But Successful Day

Today was a really, really long day.  It was an office day, so I was up early.  And then, I ended up staying a little later than normal.  So, by the time I got home I was pretty tired.  But, since I knew time was short, I went straight upstairs to change into exercise clothes.  I did an hour on the bike before anything else.  Then, I went to a 7:00 yoga class to finish up the exercise for the day.  I think I am getting more used to the Thursday night teacher, so I’m getting more out of the classes.  That’s definitely a good thing.

The whole day counts as a challenge.  I’m not sure why, but this project at work is really getting to me.  And, when my stress levels go up, everything else just seems harder.  But, I’m pushing through.  And, I get to come home to Michael and Steve.  That is always a happy thing. 

The surprise of the day was just that I am getting better at my yoga classes.  I can hold down dog longer now.  I still can’t hold it as long as most of the class, but I’m getting better.  And, I think I am getting more flexible overall.  It’s really a good feeling when I can bend and stretch in ways that I just couldn’t a month or two ago.  Yes, I still have a long ways to go, but I am really starting to see progress everywhere I look.

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Day 145 - Back to Work

It felt so good to get back to my classes at the gym tonight.  My muscles were rested and ready to go, and I was antsy.  Plus, it had been a really rough day at work.  By the time I got to class, I was ready to let go of all work thoughts and really focus on exercise.  It was a great diversion, and a great workout. 

Yesterday, I noticed something really bizarre.  Because Tuesdays and Thursday are my normal office days, I am usually sore from a class whenever I am in the office.  Yesterday, I wasn’t sore because I had missed my classes Monday night because of the doctor’s apt.  It felt so strange to be able to move freely around the office.  I never thought I would miss my aches and pains!  Then again, I am sure I made up for it tonight, and tomorrow will be back to ‘normal’.

The challenge today was leaving work at work and focusing on exercise once I was at the gym.  Sometimes, I get so caught up in everything going on during the day, it is hard to shift gears when the day is over.  But, when the classes are so demanding, it definitely makes it easier.

The surprise for today was how well Michael did in his swimming lesson.  Before Thanksgiving, he was afraid to jump in the deep end, and couldn’t be more than a foot away from his teacher without being really nervous.  Today, he jumped in the deep end several times, and allowed the teacher to be several feet away.  And, he swam an entire length of the pool independently.  He is definitely getting better in the water!  That makes me so happy.


Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Day 144 - Resting Today

I’m sorry this is going to be short tonight.  It was a rest day but I’m really, really tired. I think changing my thyroid medication is taking a toll on me.  I am expecting it to get better, but I think it’s going to be a rough week or two.  

Today’s challenge is the fact that I’m really, really tired.  I’m so glad I didn’t have to do any exercise today.  I am going to go to bed relatively early tonight and hope for energy for tomorrow.  Cross your fingers for me?
The surprise was just that Michael had two great days at school in a row.  He’d been having a rough patch lately, so it was an extra nice surprise.  I’m greedy, and hoping for three in a row tomorrow!

Monday, December 3, 2012

Day 143 - A Chaotic but Hopeful Day

Today was an odd day.  I had a doctor’s appt this afternoon and a support group meeting scheduled for tonight.  The appointment ran really, really late, so I missed my exercise class and my support group.  But, the good thing is that I was still able to get both hours of exercise in.  I figured I should do an hour at lunch time and then did a second hour when I finally got home.  I’m really exhausted, and am sad I missed my meeting, but, I am so glad I got my exercise in.

The challenge of the day was just making the timing work to get as much as possible done.  It meant exercising really late, but I am hoping I’ll still be able to sleep tonight.  I am hopeful that today’s doctor can really make a difference for me.  He is changing my thyroid medication, so I really hope to see good things.

The surprise of the day was that the doctor really listened to me.  He asked questions and didn’t question my answers.  So many doctors have come out and accused me of lying when I tell them about my diet and exercise.  I really appreciate that he listened, believed me, and is going to come up with a plan to make things work.  I am tired, but really hopeful.

Sunday, December 2, 2012

Day 142 - Roller Coaster of a Day

Today has really been an up and down type of day.  I got to sleep in and had a relaxing morning, but then Michael had a really rough afternoon.  Then, something amazing happened.  Like I said, up and down, up and down.  The good news is that I was able to get in two hours of exercise; two hour long sessions on the bike. 

The challenge today was really intense.  Michael was in a really terrible mood most of the afternoon.  He was argumentative and grumpy and really extreme.  Normally, he will get in a mood and it will pass within an hour or two.  Today, it lasted for several hours.  Toward the end, he was upstairs in his room and I was downstairs crying.

Then, the surprise/miracle of the day happened.  Michael came downstairs and he was calm.  He actually noticed that I was crying and asked if I was crying because of his behavior. He had never made that kind of connection before.  He has understood that he has had bad behavior, and that I get sad sometimes, but he has never connected the two so directly.  Let alone put it into words. 

After that, he was pretty much back to normal.  We played some Christmas games on the wii and then went for a drive to see how many people have put up lights.  It was actually a fairly nice evening.  Of course, I feel like I’ve been on a day long roller coaster ride.  But, at least the hills were as good as the valleys were sad.  And, tomorrow is another day.

Saturday, December 1, 2012

Day 141 - Twenty Week Results

It is hard to imagine it’s been twenty weeks.  That’s a long, long time for me to stick to such a strenuous exercise routine.  But, I am definitely seeing results.  I love this week’s picture.  I am starting to have collarbones!  Imagine that!


So, twenty weeks and 42 pounds.  It’s still not where I was hoping to be, but every picture shows more and more of a difference.  Every pound lost seems like a huge step forward.  I will learn to be patient.  And, along the lines of appreciating every pound, Steve did a comparison of today’s picture with the picture from two weeks ago.  There aren’t a huge amount of differences, but today’s picture definitely shows major improvement in the head and neck area.  Did I mention collar bones?  I know they’re not really pronounced yet, but, you can tell they are there.  That’s progress!

Today’s challenge was not being disappointed when I got on the scale and realized I didn’t lose anything this week.  I was crushed.  But, then I realized that it’s just a number on a scale.  Every single day I am moving forward.  Some steps are bigger than others, but I am not going to stop walking.  I will get there!

Today’s surprise was another quiet moment with Michael.  I told him I needed some cuddle time.  While he was on my lap, the Christmas Clock went off, and he asked me to sing with the clock.  I can’t carry a tune in a bucket, but he asked me to sing every Christmas carol I knew.  It was so sweet I thought I would burst from happiness.  Not a bad day!

Friday, November 30, 2012

Day 140 - Finally Friday!

Friday!!!!  This has been a really long week.  But, this is going to be a great weekend.  The good news is that I got off on the right foot.  I did an hour on the bike at lunch today and then went to my yoga class tonight.  Both exercise sessions felt really good.  The lunch bike ride was energizing, and the yoga class was relaxing.  That’s exactly what I needed today.

Today’s challenge was just that I needed to make the time at lunch time to exercise.  It was a busy morning and it would have been really easy to skip lunch and just work through.  But, I knew I needed to take the time and get on the bike.  I am so proud of myself that I did it, and had a great hour on the bike.

The surprise of the day was that Steve put up the outside Christmas lights today.  So, by the end of the weekend, we should be completely decorated for Christmas.  And, we’ve gotten a lot of the shopping done already.  So, I just need to finish things up and see what is left to do.  That will make for a fun and exciting weekend.

Tomorrow is a weigh in and picture day.  I can’t wait to see how this week went!

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Day 139 - I Declare a Holiday!

I was supposed to exercise as soon as I got home, but I wanted to watch the rest of the congressional hearing on autism.  Then, I was going to go to yoga.  But you know what?  I am so hyped and excited right now the last thing I can even think about is being peaceful and focused.  So, I am declaring a holiday in honor of the autism hearing and am just going to bask in the fact that someone is finally listening.  It was so good to see the CDC squirm under the pointed questions and have national leaders recognize that there are real, serious issues that need to be addressed.  Today I am going to hope that they are listening and that a change really is going to come.  (Tomorrow will be back to the program!)

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Day 138 - Pinched Finger, but a Pretty Tree

Another Wednesday and I’m exhausted.  Again.  Before the muscle challenge class, most of the people were comparing which muscles still hurt after Monday.  At least I’m not alone in my pain!  Then, class was really, really tough tonight.  When I was putting my weights away, I pinched my finger.  So, by the time yoga started, I was in a great mood.  But, at least yoga put me in a better frame of mind.  There is something about ‘one breath, one movement’ that is really relaxing – even when you’re sweating profusely!

Today’s challenge is just work related stuff.  I have so much going on, and it is driving me completely insane.  If I make it through the end of January with my sanity and employment intact, it will be a true miracle.
The surprise of the day was that Steve put up the tree last night while I was sleeping.  And, he got out all the boxes of decorations.  After work and before the gym, we started to decorate the tree.  It was nice.  Michael is really getting into decorating the house this year.  So, despite everything else going on, all I have to do is look up, see the decorations, and I smile.

Tomorrow is going to be a long day.  But, I am going to bed early tonight, so I am hoping to be ready for whatever happens.  Have a great night!

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Day 137 - A Little Sick Guy

I am so glad today was a rest day!  I was sore from yesterday’s classes by lunch time.  But, it’s the kind of sore where you know you worked really hard, but it’s not so bad you never want to do it again.  Hopefully, by tomorrow evening, I’ll be ready to go again.
The challenge of the day was that Michael had to stay home sick from school.  He has a little cold and I didn’t want him to share it with the rest of his school.  He’s angling to stay home again tomorrow, too.  I guess we’ll see how he sleeps tonight and how he’s feeling in the morning.

The surprise of the day was just that he’s handling being sick so well.  He pretty much stayed under the covers and played quietly in his room most of the day.  Now, he was watching movies on Netflix and DVDs most of the time, so it wasn’t exactly educational.  But, he wasn’t whining and was actually fairly pleasant.  That’s more than I can say when I’m not feeling well.
But, tonight I am going to get to bed early so I can really be at my best tomorrow.  OK, I am just tired and want to go to sleep.  Have a great night!

Monday, November 26, 2012

Day 136 - Back to Myself!

Today was a much better day! I woke up in a good mood today, and it stuck for the day.  By the time I was supposed to go to the gym, I was really ready.   I took some advice and had a protein shake before I left for the gym tonight.  I mixed a banana into it, so it had both protein and carbs.  My performance in both classes was much better, and I am not nearly as cold as I have been.  This might just work!

Classes tonight were really good.  I normally do a different triceps exercise when everyone else is doing dips on the side of the bench.  Tonight, I decided to give it a try.  I only made it through 5 dips, and then my arms gave out.  But, it was better than I thought I could do.  Of course, when my arms gave out, I landed right on top of a 15 pound weight.  I should have an interesting bruise tomorrow!  But, I am so proud of myself for trying, and being able to do some.  Of course, for the second set, I went back to overhead triceps dips.

Yoga was good, too.  I had to make modifications to some of the poses, and I couldn’t hold down dog as long as everyone else, but I am definitely making progress.  It feels so good to be able to do more and more every class. 

The challenge of the day was remembering to make the shake before I left for the gym.  I had planned it all out last week, even making sure we had almond milk in the refrigerator.  But, I was so excited to get out of the house, I almost forgot.  But, I remembered and I really benefitted from it.
The surprise of the day was definitely being able to do the triceps dips.  Even though I couldn’t do as many as everyone else, I was still so proud of myself for being able to do any.  I really, really love that I am getting stronger every week.  And, I am sure that my muscles got a great workout tonight, and will be very thankful to have a rest day tomorrow!

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Day 135 - A Challenging Day

Today has pretty much been a challenge.  I’m not quite sure why, but I’ve been really down all day.  I managed to get an hour in on the bike and an hour on wii exerbeat.  They were two decent workouts, so I should have gotten some decent endorphins, but no such luck.  For now, I’m just going to be happy that I stuck it out and followed my plan for the day. 

The surprise of the day was just that Steve and Dan finished painting the little room upstairs.  It looks really nice and they should be able to re-load the room tomorrow.  Steve has done a few minor repairs and the room is much better now.  Hopefully, we will be able to get everything set up and set up for our next round of HBOT.

I think I’m going to keep this entry pretty short and just hope that I’ll feel better tomorrow.  Have a good night!

Saturday, November 24, 2012

Day 134 - Nineteen Week Results

Weekend!!  It feels like a really festive weekend.  For me, the weekend after Thanksgiving has always been the start of Christmas.  We were going to get out the decorations today and start getting the house ready for Christmas.  But, we had a couple major projects to finish first.  One of those projects was to paint the tiny extra bedroom that we use for the hyperbaric chamber and move some furniture around upstairs.  That is going to take the better part of the weekend.  But, once it’s done, it will make everything a lot easier.  And, it will make Michael’s room nicer.  He should like that!

Between Thanksgiving this week and some water retention issues, I was really worried to get on the scale this morning.  But, despite everything, I was still down a pound for a total of 42 pounds.  I am hoping that next week will be a better loss to make up for this week.  However, losing weight over Thanksgiving, I am happy!
I went to yoga this morning and had a really good class.  She did some hip opening poses that I was really surprised to be able to do.  I never thought I’d be able to do a pose called ‘pretzel’!  Later, when I was walking down the stairs, I noticed that it was much easier.  I really think to yoga class helped me today!  Then, while Steve and Dan were busy painting upstairs, I put in an hour on the exercise bike.  It was pretty low key, but a great way to finish up.

The challenge today was trying to keep my expectations reasonable – both on the scale and for what I hoped to accomplish this weekend.  I think I am doing OK with both.  Yes, I would have been happier to have a bigger loss this week, but realistically, any loss this week is wonderful.  And, we have an extra long Christmas season this year, taking two extra days to get the decorations put up is not that big of a deal.  If it means that the upstairs is better organized and Michael’s room is more ‘his’, that is a happy thing.
The surprise today was that Michael is getting much better at doing things for himself.  We decided to have a Michael independence day.  All day long we asked him to do things on his own that we normally do for him.  When he had questions, I walked him through step by step, but still let him do it on his own.  He was a little scared by the idea, but I think he was proud of himself, too.  He was hoping tomorrow would be ‘normal’, but I think we’re going to have him do more and more things himself and see just what he can do.

Friday, November 23, 2012

Day 133 - Exerbeat and Yoga

Today was a really quiet day at work.  I was able to take a lunch break and play a wii exercise game for an hour.  Have you ever played exerbeat on the wii?  It was really fun.  I did a little cardio boxing, some aerobics, and some stretching.  The hour went by really quickly.  Probably not something I want to do every day, but it was a great change of pace.

After work, it was time to go to the gym for yoga.  I was surprised that the class was pretty empty tonight.  I’m guessing a lot of people went out of town for the weekend.  But, even though it was not really crowded, it was a great class.  I noticed tonight that I am able to do a lot of the poses a lot better.  I am able to hold down dog a little longer, and my flexibility is definitely improving.  It’s nice to see improvement after all the work I’ve put in!

The challenge of the day was saying no to the leftover stuffing.  But, I know how much Steve likes it, so it made it a bit easier to save it for him.  I did eat the leftover cauliflower and Brussels sprouts.  Yumm.  I will definitely be making the Brussels sprouts recipe again.

The surprise of the day was that Michael slept in a bit.  I was able to get the day started and have a cup of coffee before he came downstairs.  It was a nice, quiet way to start the morning.  I could definitely get used to having time for coffee before morning drama!

I have big hopes for the weekend.  We are going to try to move some things around in the house and put up Christmas decorations this weekend.  It is my favorite time of the year, and I love the decorations.  I just hope we get it all done!

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Day 132 - Happy Thanksgiving!

Happy Thanksgiving!  Today was all about family and friends, and the Redskins!  I felt so loved and so blessed today.  Steve and I worked all morning to get the house clean and dinner ready.  Then, his mom came over, and a friend of mine from work came over.  It was so nice to sit down and relax and enjoy each other’s company.

But, the best part was that Michael actually enjoyed his dinner.  He had several items on his plate at once.  He didn’t want the food to touch, but was able to move things aside and not panic when they did.  And, he ate a decent dinner.  It was wonderful.

The biggest surprise of the day was when the Redskins actually won their game today.  They haven’t had the best season and they rarely win against the Cowboys, and never on Thanksgiving.  So, even though it wasn’t the most important of today’s happy events, it was definitely the most surprising!
Tomorrow we will go back to our regular routines and I’ll be back at the gym.  But, it was really nice to take a day and just relax as a family.  And, it was nice to eat some carbs, too.  And, now it will be time for me to get into the holiday spirit.  I try really hard not to think too much about Christmas until after Thanksgiving.  But, now, it’s time!

I guess that means that I really need to focus on my diet the next month or so.  It’s so easy around the holidays to have just a little bit of this, or to make a special treat.  But, I’ve come so far, I definitely don’t want to lose ground now.  The good news is that my family is really supportive of my program, so I know they will make sure to not offer me things I can’t have!  And, I am strong enough to say no if they do!

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Day 131 - Freezing After Exercise?

Today was a great day.  Michael had a little incident at school, but the principal made sure we knew what upset him, and that it wasn’t his fault.  I really appreciate that she took the time to make sure we knew what happened, and that Michael did the best he could.  It is so great when the school works with us to understand and support him.  So, even though the afternoon started a little rocky, it got better quickly!

I went to the gym for my regular Wednesday night classes.  Both the muscle challenge class and yoga were a little less crowded than usual.  But, I got a great workout in both!  I really pushed myself with the weights tonight.  I have a feeling I will definitely be sore tomorrow.

One thing I have noticed is that an hour or so after my classes, I’m freezing.  I end up huddled under a blanket for at least half an hour before I get back to a normal temperature.  It’s well beyond a typical slow down in circulation after exercise.  I’m not quite sure what’s causing it, or what it means, but it is definitely something I want to look into.
Today didn’t really have much of a challenge.  It was a pretty good day at work, at home, and at the gym.  I’m just going to be thankful that it was a good day.

The surprise of the day was that Michael had a really good swimming lesson.  He can swim an entire length of the pool by himself.  It doesn’t really resemble much of a formal stroke, but he gets from one place to another.  I also really like that the teacher has him working on the breast stroke, the back stroke, floating, and using the kickboard.  Pretty amazing considering he couldn’t swim at all when he started in August!
Tomorrow is Thanksgiving.  I have so much in my life to be thankful for – my family, my health, this journey, and all the wonderful support I’ve been getting.  I am going to take the day as a rest day and enjoy spending time with family and friends.  Happy Thanksgiving!

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Day 130 - Biking and Bedtime

Short post tonight since Michael actually wants me to keep him company tonight.  I was able to work from home today and that made it easy to get my two hours of exercise in.  I kept it simple and just rode the bike, but it felt good.

Today’s challenge was just keeping focused on things while I wanted to be planning for Thanksgiving.  But, the time of the bike gave me plenty of time, so that worked out well.  Some days are just not meant for focus!

The surprise of the night was Michael wanting me to tuck him in.  Normally, he prefers Steve to keep him company at night.  But, tonight he wants Mommy and I’m happy.  So, have a great night!

Monday, November 19, 2012

Day 129 - Monday, Monday

Mondays are really difficult days.  After having a couple days to catch up on my sleep, it’s really hard to get up in the morning and get back in the swing of things.  And, as Michael gets older, he is harder to get moving in the morning as well.  But, we managed to get through the morning and he went off to school and I got to work. 

I was a little disappointed when I got to the gym to find that one of my favorite instructors was out sick, so we had a substitute teacher for both the muscle challenge class and the yoga class.  She was perfectly fine, but not the same as the regular instructor.  But, I still got a good workout, and that is what matters.  And, if I am not super sore this week, that wouldn’t be a bad thing, either.

The challenge of the day was just getting moving.  Michael was a little cranky this morning, and a little slow.  But, we eventually got ourselves together.  I think I need to make more of an effort on Sunday nights to get to bed early.  That would probably help a lot.

The surprise of the day was that my boss said it was OK to work from home tomorrow.  The cool thing is that means I can exercise tomorrow at lunch time and then take Thursday as my rest day.  It just makes scheduling so much easier!  So, I guess it turned out to be a good day after all – for a Monday at least.


Sunday, November 18, 2012

Day 128 - KEEN Picture Day!

Today was a wonderful day.  We spent a good part of the day taking pictures at KEEN.  It was so much fun, and I think the families really appreciated it.  Then, the Redskins actually won!  The only down side was that I only got in one hour of exercise. 

KEEN (Kids Enjoy Exercise Now) is a wonderful program where kids with developmental disabilities get matched with a volunteer coach for several different types of programs – open gym, music, swimming, bowling, etc.. It’s a great program.  Michael has been participating with them for a few years now.  He loves going to his music program once a month.  And, a wonderful things about KEEN is that all their programs and activities are free. 
Because it’s such a wonderful program, it felt really good to do something with the families that I know they appreciated.  It’s so hard to get good pictures of our kids.  Tom, a friend of ours who is a wonderful photographer is so amazing with the kids, and got some fantastic pictures.  Even if a child was nervous at first, he won them over when he let them look in the camera and see their picture.  Some of the pictures were of entire families, some were just the KEEN participant, and some included siblings.  I don’t remember the last time I smiled so much as when I was cropping and printing the pictures!

The challenge of the day was trying to get both hours of exercise in.  Because we were at KEEN so much of the day, I didn’t start my exercise until almost dinner time.  Then, I got a headache and decided that one hour was going to have to be enough for the day.  But, even though I didn’t get in as much exercise as I’d like, it was still a wonderful day.
The surprise of the day was definitely my interactions with the parents.  I know how hard it is to get a good picture of Michael.  And a family picture is almost unheard of.  So,  it was great to be able to do this, and get so many wonderful pictures.   My heart is going to be smiling for quite a while!


Saturday, November 17, 2012

Day 127 - Eighteen Week Results!!!

This time it really is 18 weeks.  And, as of this morning, I am down a total of 41 pounds!  I am beyond happy, excited, thrilled, and proud.  As I am edging closer and closer to the 300 pound mark, I am really starting to see more and more differences in daily life.  I love that!  But, first things, first.  Below is today’s picture.  It feels wonderful to post it!

It’s been a fairly full day.  I went out and did a yoga class this morning, then had a few chores around the house.  Then, my brother in law and mother in law came over for a visit.  He was only in town for today, so it was our only chance to spend any time with him.  It was nice to see him.  Then, after they left, I did an hour on the bike.  I was pretty tired when I started, and it was hard to make it all the way through a full hour, but I did.  Sometimes I really rely on that stubborn streak of mine.
The challenge of the day was just getting through everything.  I woke up a little grumpy this morning, and have been out of sorts most of the day.  I really don’t know why.  But, I did manage to push through everything. 

The surprise of the day was just that I had a really good yoga class this morning.  Even though I was grumpy, it was nice to do some new poses.  The instructor this morning was good.  I just wish they had more classes.  I did talk with a manager who promised they are still looking to hire new instructors.  So, maybe one day soon I’ll report the surprise of the day was added classes!  I also mentioned the lack of modifications.  She seemed interested and said it was good feedback.  I don’t know if anything will come of it or not.  But, at least I got to say what was on my mind.

Friday, November 16, 2012

Day 126 - Happy, Relaxing, Yoga!

What a difference a day makes!  Tonight I went to my favorite yoga class and came out relaxed and smiling.  It was so nice!  The instructor has a broken wrist, but she still managed to lead a fantastic class.  And, she used the opportunity to show some modifications that she might not have thought of otherwise.  Very nice!
After class, I came home and got on the bike for an hour.  It felt so good.  I was all stretched and relaxed after yoga, so my legs felt really strong.  The hour went by really quickly.  I couldn’t ask for a better workout.

The challenge of the day was just that it was a super busy day.  Michael and I both had doctor appointments at lunch time.  I had forgotten to put it on the calendar, so I wasn’t prepared.  I had to keep Michael home from school, and I had to juggle a couple other things to make the appointment work.  But, it did work, and it was a great appointment.
The surprise of the day was just how good it felt to ride the bike tonight.  For the first time in a while, nothing hurt, and moving just felt natural.  I wish I could bottle that feeling!

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Day 125 - Really Annoyed with LA Fitness Gaithersburg

OK, I’m really not happy with the new LA Fitness in Gaithersburg.  I guess I’ve gotten really spoiled by how wonderful Healthtrax is.  Tonight I was rushing in to the evening yoga class – one of two classes that are offered outside of work hours.  The person behind the desk grabbed my keys when I went to check in and said I had to get my picture taken right then.  I was so mad!  First of all, it’s really gross that they want to be the one to swipe your card.  Imagine all the germs and ick that they pass along just with that one process.  Then, to kidnap my keys for a picture, when I’m already running late was beyond rude.  There is no reason I couldn’t have done the picture on the way out.

I could forgive the rudeness of the check in, if only the classes made up for it.  But, when I signed up they promised there would be yoga every day.  Twice a week is not every day, last I checked.  And, as much as I like that the class is relatively advanced, I hate that the teacher offers almost no modifications.  I’m pretty good at coming up with my own modifications, but a lot of people aren’t.  Every class has had one or more people leave in the first fifteen minutes.  It was obvious they left out of frustration.  I hate seeing people give up on a class they should love!
I know I shouldn’t be so negative, but it’s been almost a month now, and I just haven’t seen any improvement.  They haven’t added any classes, the staff are getting more rude, and the classes they do have are not exactly welcoming.  I think I’m going to find out if there are any options to quit without losing my sign up fee.  A gym is not supposed to cause more stress than it alleviates!

I would guess it is fair to say that dealing with the LA Fitness people was definitely the challenge of the day.  I did manage to ignore it all and get a decent workout in.  I am so glad that the instructors at my primary gym have taught me enough to be really self sufficient! 
And I am thinking that the surprise of the day is that I really can do enough modifications or substitute poses that I get a great workout, no matter how advanced the class is.  Since I knew there was no way I could do the plough pose, I brought my strap and did a series of leg stretches.  It felt wonderful and gave me something positive to do while others were struggling with the pose.  Independence and self confidence?  Who knew!