This Friday will mark six weeks since I re-started exercising on a regular basis. Before that, it had been yeeeeeears since I lifted a weight or did any kind of cardio. I’ve been “going to” restart the exercising for all those years, but damn. Exercise is borrrrrrrring.
Don’t even try to convince me otherwise, okay? I don’t want to run (my knees won’t let me), I’m not interested in yoga (and don’t try to convince me otherwise), I hate walking (the roads aren’t particularly safe around here and I don’t want to drive 10 minutes up the road to use the walking path near the high school because WALKING IS BORING.)
To fully understand my opinion on this topic, imagine that I’ve thrown myself on the floor and am flopping around like a fish and whining the whinest whine possible when I say, GODDAMN IS EXERCISING BORING.
So at the beginning of the year I had a come to Jesus meeting with myself, and I was all “Look, you. Either you’re going to be a doddering old lady, or you’re going to be a doddering old lady who can’t open the two liter bottle of Diet Coke without help. WHICH IS IT GOING TO BE?”
I like me some Diet Coke, so after more whining and flopping around on the floor, I got bored with complaining and sucked it up. (“But Robyn, I thought you weren’t supposed to drink diet soda after weight loss surgery?!” Yes, and I’m not supposed to have 13 cats in one house because that’s totally crazypants. I’M A REBEL.)
For the past five (six as of this coming Friday) weeks, I’ve worked out four days a week, and I’m sorry? Did you just sneer at me? Because let me ask you this: which is better, exercising four days a week when YOU think I should be exercising five or six, or exercising NO days a week because I’m in prison for running you down with my car because you got all judgey on my ass?
(Rhetorical question, because the judge would totally be on my side.)
Four days a week, I exercise. I take Wednesdays off, and I exercise thusly: Monday and Thursday I lift upper body weights (chest, shoulders, back, biceps, triceps) and then do 20 minutes of High Intensity Interval Training on the elliptical, and then on Tuesday and Fridays, I do lower body weights (quads, hamstrings, calves, abs) and 20 minutes of High Intensity Interval Training on the elliptical. My weight lifting is three sets of ten, one exercise per body part, plus an additional set of ten of a completely different exercise for the same body part. I lift heavyish, but not to failure.
“But Robyn! Dr. Blah-de-blah says that blah blah blah cardio for AT LEAST SIXTY MINUTES SIX DAYS A WEEK!” Well, girlfriend, if you want to slog your way through sixty minutes of cardio six days a week, do please knock yourself out. The way I have my fancy exercise schedule set up, I am never more than two days away from a day off. Some days, that’s the only knowledge that gets my ass out of bed.
What’s the best kind of exercise you can do? Class? Anyone? Bueller? That’s RIGHT: the BEST exercise is the exercise you’ll actually DO. I’ve managed to force myself through 50 – 60 minutes of exercise four days a week for the past five weeks, and so that’s what works for me. Might I wake up one day, say “Fuck this” and then never exercise again? I very well might. But then again, yesterday morning I woke up, said “Fuck this”, turned over to go back to sleep, petted Everett Peppers for five minutes, then got my ass out of bed and exercised – and went the furthest distance I’ve ever gone in 20 minutes on the elliptical.
If you find an exercise you actually enjoy, then I’m happy for you. With the rare exception, I just don’t enjoy exercising (I have a weird love for triceps exercises, especially pushdowns, OH MY GOD I LOVE THOSE THINGS and I also loathe the actual act of quadriceps extensions, but ADORE the way my legs feel afterward)
Okay, here’s my dirty little secret: my favorite part of the day is when the exercising is done and I stumble back to the house on legs that are shaky and trembly. I love noodle legs. So I guess what I’m saying is that I hate the exercising, but love the way I feel afterward. It’s like brushing my teeth. The act of brushing them is OH MY GOD SO BORRRRRRRING ::flopping around on the floor whining whinily:: but I do love the feel of clean teeth.
(Hey, remember the Pearl Drops commercial where she ran her tongue across her teeth and was all orgasmic about her clean and shiny teeth? God, I hated that. Put your tongue back in your mouth, freak. No one needs to see that shit.)
We have a TV and DVD player AND a VCR out in the garage (note to the whippersnappers: before movies came in digital or DVD form, they came on these big ol’ blocky things called “tapes” and it took like 43 days to rewind the fucking things, and you HAD to rewind them before you returned them to the movie store, or they’d charge you $1 for not rewinding. Rewinding is when you hit a button so that the tape would… You know what? You’re on the computer right now, you go Google that shit. I’m sure someone somewhere has a page on the oddities of how the old folks used to watch movies). When I first started working out, I was watching movies. I watched The Cutting Edge (I say that When Harry Met Sally is my favorite movie, but I think that The Cutting Edge might really be my real favorite. My god, I love that movie.) and Music and Lyrics, Boys on the Side, Clueless – a bunch of movies that I happened to pick up at a movie sale a few years ago. What I need when I’m working out is something I can watch, that will entertain me, BUT that I don’t have to keep my eyes and attention on the entire time. Those movies worked for me because I’d seen them all before.
Then I ran out of movies.
I had NO idea what the hell I was going to watch. I mean, I’ve got a ton of stuff on my Netflix queue, but it was all stuff that I wanted to see, and that I needed to pay attention to. For instance, I plan to start watching Downton Abbey (YES, for the love of all that is holy, you fuckers have made me curious enough to give it a try!), but I suspect that I’d be missing out if I needed to turn away and do bent-over rows and couldn’t watch the TV the whole time (I mean, I could still keep my eyes on the TV, but the show wouldn’t have my 100% attention because I’d be counting to 10 WHICH REQUIRES MORE CONCENTRATION THAN YOU’D THINK, it’s easy to lose count).
And then I had a stroke of brilliance.
Last week I started watching the first season of Friends while I work out. I love that show so very much, AND THERE ARE TEN SEASONS OF IT! It is absolutely perfect, exactly what I need. When I’ve watched every episode, I’ll probably start watching Seinfeld. And then? I’ll start Friends all over again!
So there you go. More than you ever wanted to know about what I’m doing, four mornings a week. Sweating, swearing, and watching the best show ever.
(Also, on the days I get up to exercise, I actually set the alarm on my iPod Touch to wake me up at 5:30. I don’t jump right out of bed, but it gets me going (my alarm is the sound of ducks quacking, heh), and I’m usually done exercising right around 7:00.)
PS: I meant to say up there that what I like about High Intensity Interval Training is that I watch the seconds, and the minutes take care of themselves. I’m more concentrating on when the next minute comes around so I can up (or lower) the intensity than I am worrying about how much time I’ve got left. I discovered HIIT cardio years ago when Fred and I were following the Body for Life program. This time around I’m doing the HIIT for cardio, but not for weight lifting. Whatever works for me, right?
Mama kitty update (but no picture today, sorry). Yesterday the shelter manager, Susan, and another Challenger’s House volunteer/ foster mum, Winnie, stopped by. I took them up to peek in on mama kitty. Winnie petted her through the side of the kennel (which has mesh sides), and though mama kitty didn’t roll out the welcome mat or anything, she put up with it and didn’t move to the back of the kennel. Considering how freaked out she was Friday night, that’s definitely progress!
The biggest progress of the day happened when I was gone. Fred went up to the foster room with turkey – and she ate it OUT OF HIS HAND. This is the first time she’s eaten in front of either of us (until then, she was only eating when we weren’t around), and she took several pieces directly from him.
He has a way with the lady cats, that husband o’ mine.
Name update: I’m almost positive I’m going with Emmy as her name. Several of you suggestion Tabitha, but that’s been used by the shelter in the past. Someone also suggested Hope, which I really liked, but that’s been used as well. So I’m likely going to go with Emmy, and the naming theme? Awards. Possible names for kittens: Oscar, Golden, Clio, Obie, Tony, Razzy (that last one was a suggestion from Fred). Got an award name you want to throw into the hat? Let me know!
Also, I need suggestions for a name to call them as a group. Fred suggested “Pawards”, but that’s kind of awkward and doesn’t really roll off the tongue. Any suggestions?
At some point during his morning routine, Fred takes a few minutes to sit down on the kitchen floor. The cats gather around and he pets them and gives them love.
I know, right? SWEET.
Yesterday morning when he sat down, only Corbie and Kara were interested in being petted, which was unusual – usually most, if not all, of the cats come around for petting. After he’d given Corbie and Kara enough petting to get their day started right, he got up to go take his shower. Which is when he found all the rest of the cats, standing around the doorway to his bathroom. One of the cats – I highly suspect Everett – had noticed that when Fred puts da bird away, he puts it on the third shelf of the bookcase in the front room. Everett (just a guess) had climbed up there, grabbed it, and then pulled it into the bathroom. Fred said they were all standing around, their attention on the feathers, apparently waiting for it to start flying through the air.
Upon hearing that, I had to go around and squeeze the stuffing out of all the cats. SO CUTE.
So, Sally and Lucy are now at Petsmart. They howled all the way there, but once I got them settled in their cages (Sally’s in a cage by herself, and Lucy’s in a cage with another black cat who’s been there for quite a while), they seemed okay. I’ll report any adoptions as they happen, of course!
But somehow, the mighty Everett survives to jump again.
2011: No entry.
2010: No entry.
2009: No entry.
2008: I don’t think y’all need any more ammunition to prove that I’m a blithering idiot.
2007: “She keeps abandoning us for that damn Smallville house and those damn Smallville cats. Let’s pee in her bed, Suggie!”
2006: Holy hot dog! That’s a good freakin’ show!
2005: Questions answered.
2004: No entry.
2003: “Why, god? Whyyyyy?”
2002: He was in the room with me for less than 90 seconds. Was I happy? Oh, yes. Thrilled.
2001: I don’t know about that man…
2000: New vehicle.