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Water Adventures

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

I live on lake so technically I can swim whenever I want at least from May through September. But I donít. I donít like to share my water with fish and they were there first, so I stay away.

Even if I could coexist with fish, there are jet skiers and boaters who donít observe the ďno wake within 50 feet of a dockĒ rule. Itís the same reason I canít bike on our narrow country roads. Iím going to get the worst of any collision.

There is a pool at the YMCA in town. DH swims there all the time.

Today I couldnít take the pollen anymore & decided to workout at the gym. I really was in the mood for something different & noticed a water aerobics class on the schedule. Maybe I would try that. So I packed a bathing suit just in case.

Problem 1:
The schedule said class was 10:00-11:00, but when I arrived at 9:45 it was well underway. Both the website and the printed schedule were wrong.
Since I was already in my suit I decided to join them anyway

Problem 2:
The class was huge. There was very little room left. Although they were rather packed in along the wall, they made room for me. Nice ladies. Obviously a popular activity.

Problem 3:
They had a set routine that everyone seemed to know except me. I had flashbacks to step aerobics and Zumba when I was always standing on the leg the instructor wanted me to kick. I flapped around for awhile trying to watch the lady next to me.

Problem 4:
I was slipping and sliding, but the others werenít. Finally I noticed that everyone was wearing water shoes. I didnít think about that piece of equipment.

Time for an alternate plan. I was already wet and two lap swim lanes were open.

Fortunately my swim bag contained a cap and googles and my nose plug. I got all my gear on my head and noticed a toddler staring at me. He was about to have a swim lesson. I bet I looked like a big frog to him.

Iím not a natural in the water. I learned to swim at age 28 after having 3 kids. I couldnít even float. I never even put my face in the water.

Growing up in Brooklyn in the 50s, water to me was jumping around in the waves at Coney Island, or running through the spray from the fire hydrant that the boys used to open up in the summer until the police would arrive to shut it down.

I alternated freestyle and breaststroke for 30 lengths (750 yards) and felt pretty good considering I hadnít swum a stroke in 3 years. I could tell that my recently rehabbed frozen left shoulder was weaker than my right. Maybe Iíll try this once a week to strengthen it.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

LINDAKAY228 4/24/2014 11:26AM

    I used to love the water aerobics class I went to on Tuesdays and Thursdays from noon to 1 and the instructor for it. Usually it wasn't as crowded as you described which would definitely turn me off! It was the only indoor public pool and belonged to the hospital, which has a gym and also physical therapy in the same buiding The equipment was separate but the 3 pools (each one smaller) were shared and only open for classes or public swim at certain times. Otherwise the therapy dept had it. But it was in another state and I moved away from there and haven't tried one in this huge metroplex I'm in now. I might deal with the fish but the wakes would be hard for me to take too.

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KANOE10 4/24/2014 7:50AM

    That is great that you tried something new. Maybe you will like doing laps. I felt the same way in a zumba class. I could not keep up. I would not have thought about water shoes either! I grew up at the beach so I love the water.

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WAY2GOCAT 4/24/2014 4:00AM

    Good for you for trying! emoticon

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PHEBESS 4/23/2014 11:17PM

    YAY for braving the pool!!!!! (And I'm not fond of lakes, it's the plant stuff that grabs my feet that freaks me out!)

It takes a while to get used to water aerobics classes, everyone is klutzy at the beginning. But it's good low impact exercise, and the water provides added resistance.

Swimming is GREAT exercise - really tones the muscles while providing cardio. One of my fave activities.

And I'm another one who learned to swim with my face in the water late in life - as I child, I learned to swim in the Hudson River, but kept getting conjunctivitis from the dirty water. So my mom told me to just swim on my back. I could swim a mile on my back by my teens, just never got the hang of swimming with my face in the water til I took a swim class at the YMCA in my 30s. Now, I'm a certified and advanced scuba diver, and absolutely at home in the water. Just stick with it, you'll improve and feel comfortable after a while.

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ONEKIDSMOM 4/23/2014 8:30PM

    Here's to your bravery, sense of adventure, and a salute to all forms of cross-training! emoticon

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DR1939 4/23/2014 6:48PM

    I'm not a fan of swimming. In Texas there were very few indoor pools and anytime I got near water I got a serious sunburn (skin cancer now as a result). I took swimming lessons as a child but did not keep it up. It's not my thing.

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ALICIA363 4/23/2014 6:47PM


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GINIEMIE 4/23/2014 6:36PM

    I nearly drowned three times in my youth, so water had not really been an option for me. I finally learned how to swim when I was 21, but was awful at it and stayed near the edge of the pool in case I had a panic attack. When we lived on the canal in Miami, I got my youngest swimming lessons-he's great. The four older ones had swimming lessons in OH because I wanted them to learn young so they wouldn't be afraid.
In 2010 when Erik had his accident I went to swim in the community pool. First I tried across the short side until I could barely move, then when I could do the short side 3 times back and forth I started doing the length of the pool. Pretty soon I was doing 6 rt the length of the pool. I lost weight, calmed my nerves and improved my confidence. I will never be able to save anyone, but I may be able to swim to save my life.
Swimming is a good all around exercise with low impact.
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IFDEEVARUNS2 4/23/2014 5:10PM

    That's a lot of swimming! I'm impressed.
Reminds me that one of the criteria for graduating from college was passing the swim test. And the posture test, and the repelling out a window with a fire rope test. Ah, those were the days.

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WUMPASTAR 4/23/2014 2:09PM

    Having access to a pool is so awesome. It's pretty pricey around where I live so I keep it for the free outdoor pools that only open for three months during the Summer. Hey, better than nothing :P

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BOBINVA 4/23/2014 12:26PM

    Good for you for trying something new.

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SUZYMOBILE 4/23/2014 12:12PM

    I can relate to your lack of previous swimming experience. I had to pass a swimming test to graduate high school and somehow managed to get from one end of the pool to the other, but I was sure I'd die. Now, with a pool out back, I feel like water is a new element for me, where I can feel as if I'm flying weightless.

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CAKEMAKERMOM 4/23/2014 12:10PM

    I'm glad you tried something new and was able to change plans when it didn't work. I hope you enjoy your pool time!

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While my heart and mind are fixed on Boston this morning,

Monday, April 21, 2014

Iím also remembering those days when only men were allowed to participate in this iconic event.

The image of a race official trying to drag a woman off the course is worth remembering.
In 1972 women were first allowed to compete officially.

I was pregnant with my 2nd daughter at that time. Little did I realize that 18 years later she would run her first marathon and qualify for Boston too.

The bicyclist next to her has a sign identifying her as her age group leader.

Both of my daughters have run Boston since then.
My prayer this morning is for the safety of all participants and spectators.

Edit: I'm keeping track of the race through this live blog.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

SUNSET09 4/24/2014 2:41AM

  emoticon Into each life some rain must fall however, we can remember the fallen and make it just that much better! emoticon They wil never be forgotten and we're stronger because of them. emoticon emoticon

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MBTEPP 4/22/2014 9:47PM

    It took a lot of guts to do what Kathrine Switzer did. Number 261 will always be recognized as changing the face of women runners. There is now a 261 Series of races

ry cool article. I did not know she ran the Boston Marathon this year.

Congrats on your daughters being able to partake in this historic race. My DIL qualified and ran it 3 years ago.


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MARYJEANSL 4/22/2014 8:03PM

  So glad that the race this year was blessedly uneventful.

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KANOE10 4/22/2014 8:42AM

    I am so happy it went well and was a great event.


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ONEKIDSMOM 4/21/2014 8:45PM

    Of course I was at work, but as soon as I got in the car, flipped on the radio seeking news of the race. So glad it came off so well, but not surprised. Resilient folk, the running community!

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HILLRUNNER 4/21/2014 3:56PM

    Thanks for stopping by my blog! Yours is a great tribute too!!!
Congrats on all your achievements!
Running Strong with you!

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    All as it should have been today, all's right with this corner of the world. We are Boston.

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WAY2GOCAT 4/21/2014 1:43PM

    We've come a long way baby! Amazed it was as recent as the 1970's. Blessings and emoticon

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LINDAKAY228 4/21/2014 11:37AM

    Best wishes for your family. I have also seen the pictures of the first woman who got into the race, using just her initials. We've come long way. My thoughts and prayers with all of them.

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LEWILL1982 4/21/2014 11:22AM

    I'm streaming it on my computer at work; well, I'm trying too, I'm hitting refresh multiple times....

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DR1939 4/21/2014 10:06AM

    Best wishes for your daughter's run.

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TERI-RIFIC 4/21/2014 9:54AM

    It's amazing how many life stories are tied up in this race. I love the pictures and your family story! emoticon

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KELLIEBEAN 4/21/2014 9:42AM

    I wish I was home to watch, thanks for sharing the blog and of your daughters' history with the race!

Here's to a peaceful happy Monday!

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Does this mean Iím a perfect 10?

Saturday, April 19, 2014

All the other race numbers this morning were 100-300.

What did I do to deserve this?

I know that elite runners are given special low numbers. That sure is NOT me.

Maybe I registered early and was the only early registrant who actually showed up?
No, there were 62 on the list when I registered.

Maybe although this was a 5K, someone knew I would wear an old shirt and thought the 10s should match?

Maybe they had one bib left over from another race and didnít want to waste it?
Now, thatís a possibility.

Maybe as the oldest woman in the race by a lot, it was a signal to the EMTís to watch out for me?
The route did require us to run uphill all the way to this:

The National D-Day Memorial is on a hill overlooking the town of Bedford, VA which lost more men per capita on the Normandy beaches (June 6, 1944) than any other locality in the USA.

I had plenty of time to think about their sacrifice.
All I had to do this morning was show up and run/walk up and around the monument and back down.

As the only 60+ woman participating, I got a medal anyway.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

MJZHERE 4/22/2014 3:28PM

  Maybe as the oldest woman in the race by a lot, it was a signal to the EMTís to watch out for me? This made me laugh. Good for you you keep racing.

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MBTEPP 4/21/2014 3:07PM

    Don't ever question it! You are a perfect 10!

Great race! Congratulations! Bling is BLING!!


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CELIAMINER 4/21/2014 8:30AM

    Great job, and you are the perfect 10!

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PHEBESS 4/21/2014 6:26AM

    LOL - OF COURSE you're a perfect 10!! We all know that!

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BLUENOSE63 4/20/2014 4:52PM

  You received that number because you are a 10 !

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DR1939 4/20/2014 11:15AM

    At our age showing up deserves a reward. emoticon

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WATERMELLEN 4/20/2014 8:48AM

    Very nice! And of course you're a perfect 10 out of 10 and we've known it for a long time! Glad you're getting "real time" recognition too!!

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KANOE10 4/20/2014 8:32AM

    emoticon Who knows why you were given the number 10. Your race went well and congrats on the medal. You are doing a great job of staying healthy!

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WAY2GOCAT 4/20/2014 2:50AM


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SWEETNEEY 4/20/2014 2:09AM

    Hey the 10s have it. I was a ten in my race on Saturday

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DOVESEYES 4/19/2014 9:10PM

    emoticon and yes you are a perfect 10

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RUDITUDI2000 4/19/2014 7:52PM

    Very cool! emoticon

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ANNIEONLI 4/19/2014 7:09PM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon

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SUEPERWOMAN 4/19/2014 6:14PM


Good for you!!

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MJREIMERS 4/19/2014 6:03PM

    emoticon job and congrats on your medal. No matter if you were the only one in your age group, you deserve it!

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SUNSET09 4/19/2014 5:59PM

  Oh emoticon ! You are what you say you are! emoticon emoticon emoticon

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ALICIA363 4/19/2014 5:06PM

    emoticon emoticon

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    You number was 10 as in "perfect 10" for being the cutest entrant. Someone was trying to flirt with you.

The medal reminds me of a line of products we girls of Brooklyn in the '50's clamored for: Ponytail. I had a Ponytail pencil case and Ponytail diaries.

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MARYJEANSL 4/19/2014 3:53PM

  I would have guessed without knowing the facts that you had registered late, because in my experience the late registrants are the ones who get out of sequence numbers. But, having read the blog, I know that's not the case. Strange...

In any event, congratulations!

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ONEKIDSMOM 4/19/2014 3:47PM

    Congrats on your age group "win". Funny how the competition "thins out" at our age.

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An unexpected use for a ďbody shaperĒ

Sunday, April 13, 2014

And the careless behavior that caused me to need it.

Some years ago in a moment of vanity I bought a ďbody shaper.Ē My mother (and Betty White) would have called it a girdle. It was advertised as taking inches off your waist and hips and had several testimonials to go along with it.

No matter how I adjusted that tape measure, the difference for me was less than 1 inch total, a result not noticeable at all, and to me not worth the discomfort. Coming of age in the 60s, the less confining the underwear, the better. So the shaper lay unused in the bottom of a drawer.

On Friday I spent several hours on the computer, not relaxed in my comfortable, back supported position, but in an angry, agitated posture.

I had read a letter in the newspaper of my parentsí hometown which in a condescending, vitriolic diatribe put down runners in general and marathoners in particular. He hit every fat shaming, speed shaming stereotype you could imagine and even included a few racist remarks.

The end result was my own letter to the editor so that such an attitude would not go unchallenged.

However, when I finally got up, my back and diaphragm were in a spasm. Ouch! This continued all day and resisted all my efforts to relieve it. I have a history of weird injuries that have nothing to do with running or athletic activity. (Like the time I tripped over a step while checking out the dessert table at a buffet)

I was very disappointed by this turn of events since I was scheduled to run a 5K the next morning. One month past my half marathon, I was curious to see how well this nearly 67 year old body had recovered.

Then I remembered the body shaper. It provided support all the way up to my bra and made me feel much better. So I wore it in the race and my muscles felt just fine. I maintained a comfortable steady pace of 10:15 min/mile and my 31:45 time earned a 1st place age group trophy. That meant I was faster than 1 other 65-69 year old and any others sitting home on their couch.

Iíve always said that there are valid reasons to lose weight that have nothing to do with vanity.

Now Iíve discovered an alternate reason for a body shaper and Iíll keep it handy, just in case.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

RUDITUDI2000 4/19/2014 7:53PM

    Cool! I'll have to remember that! Only it would probably make me sweat some much I'd toss it out...

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MBTEPP 4/14/2014 2:31PM

    A compression sleeve for the trunk! Great idea! You are a problem solver.


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MERRYMARY42 4/13/2014 8:29PM

    makes sense that support would help control spasms and muscle strain, way to go

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STRIVERONE 4/13/2014 4:31PM

    I'd love to see the outrageous letter and your response if you can direct me to it or if it's something you can copy and paste into a SparkMail.

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STRIVERONE 4/13/2014 4:31PM

    I'd love to see the outrageous letter and your response if you can direct me to it or if it's something you can copy and paste into a SparkMail.

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MARYJEANSL 4/13/2014 4:20PM

  I got a big kick out of this blog! My mother used to wear a girdle, and I thought it looked like an instrument of torture. I have never owned one, but now I guess they do have their uses. ;-)

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STEVIEBEE569 4/13/2014 4:13PM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon

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    Good for staying in the race. Good for responding to the knuckleheaded article.

Shapewear can also double as a tourniquet, don't you think?

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KANOE10 4/13/2014 1:06PM

    Good job on writing a rebuttal to that letter! That was too funny about using the body shaper for your race. I am glad it helped you!

I am amazed at the number and types of body shapers there are available in stores.

Hooray for finishing your race and being number one in your age group.

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_LINDA 4/13/2014 12:10PM

    Good on you responding to that nasty letter in the paper!! I too, can't imagine what problem someone would have with runners! Would love to read the original and your response (hope they publish it)
So glad you found a use for your body shaper although I thought corsets went out with Victorian times :PP I know weight lifters wear heavy leather waist supports and moving people or someone with a back injury, but the rest of us shouldn't need them!
Hope you feel better soon!

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SWEETNEEY 4/13/2014 12:02PM

    You also beat me and I'd be in the 50 - 60 category. So YOU ARE AWESOME. Talk about re-gift - re-engineering - A back support brace.

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SUZYMOBILE 4/13/2014 11:12AM

    Now, of course, I want to read your rebuttal!

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TRAVELGRRL 4/13/2014 10:46AM

    Ha! Don't you find it AMAZING that there was only one other brave soul in your age category, and about 9,999 still sitting on the couch!?!

Yay for the bodyshaper!

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LINDAKAY228 4/13/2014 10:41AM

    I love that story! Glad you found something useful to do with that thing and won the race! And all those sitting on the couch (including me) should get out and run if they can. However, I was doing some running until I had a stroke 5 1/2 months ago and hope to run again in the future. Right now I'm working on walking without falling over LOL. Doing not too bad with that as long as I don't try to do anything else but walking longer distances. But I do see lots of runners since I am now in the Dallas/Fort WOrth Metroplex with son and am so jealous of them. Anyway, hope to be back with you all soon! Hope you don't need the body shaper again lol!

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JAHINTZY 4/13/2014 10:33AM

    lol good thinking! I've been known to wear one of my corsets from the renaissance fair when I've hurt my back and caused a spasm - handy indeed :)

and I loved that bit with Betty White about the spanx/girdle thing

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POOKASLUAGH 4/13/2014 10:20AM

    I never could get into the body-shaper thing either. I bought one once, and it was just so uncomfortable (they wouldn't let you try it on in-store) that I never wore it...

Your 5K pace is awesome! Why would anyone try to shame runners?? It makes no sense.

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WATERMELLEN 4/13/2014 9:16AM

    This is quite hilarious!! I remember routinely wearing "control top" pantyhose and buying some "Spanx" too (which also live in my lingerie drawer). Even the nomenclature is punitive!

Glad you wrote the rebuttal (another great word). And glad you ran and triumphed too!!

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DR1939 4/13/2014 9:16AM

    Off and on I have back pain due to arthritis. Usually walking helps ease the pain, but when it increases it, I have a light girdle/body shaper that I wear to give me a little support.

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ALICIA363 4/13/2014 9:03AM

    emoticon emoticon

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ONEKIDSMOM 4/13/2014 9:03AM

    So, a spine brace, like we might wear a knee brace? Good job at creatively adapting to the situation! emoticon

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PICKIE98 4/13/2014 8:32AM

    My grandma always told me to never wear a girdle because without it, I would automatically hold my stomach muscles in, whereas with it on, I would not, would relax my muscles and they would be loose and out of shape!! She was very wise....

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WILSONWR 4/13/2014 8:32AM

    That was great! Now it's a muscle supporter!

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WAY2GOCAT 4/13/2014 7:47AM

    I think we've all tried body shapers. No need for it anymore as I have shaped my body with diet and exercise. Neat you found an alternate use!

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4A-HEALTHY-BMI 4/13/2014 7:41AM

    I love your new application for those things!

Hopefully you won't frequently need to write such letters and it'll be safe in the bottom drawer for several more years. LOL

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DOVESEYES 4/13/2014 7:21AM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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TERI-RIFIC 4/13/2014 7:16AM

    LOL. I've had body shapers, too. I agree that they at best don't work and at worst make you look worse.But you found a great use for one!! You could slap an ice pack in there , too. Congrats on a great race!! That's a very good time for any age in my book. Where would you have been in the next lowest catagory. emoticon emoticon

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AJR2013AJR 4/13/2014 7:06AM

  This is a funny blog! I have bought a few of those body shaper things to "smooth" things out, but I think they make me look worse! They push all the fat into a smooth, round shape and make me feel like an egg! I might have parts of me I would like to shrink in different proportions, but at least I have curves when I just let my body flow how it wants. I never thought about wearing them running. I had to invest in a knee brace, which compresses the muscles above and below and keeps my knee stable. It might be nice to keep all this fat from jiggling around my core when jogging. I might try it some time! Take care!

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MUSIC123JJ 4/13/2014 7:00AM

    Thank you for sharing. I will have to remember that the next time my back acts up.

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What Spring Means to Me

Wednesday, April 09, 2014

Iím glad winter is over. I love to be outside in nature.
Unfortunately, nature doesnít love me as much as I love it.
Still I want go outside every chance I get. I want to see the flowers.

The beautiful bushes

and the trees

I just have to take a few preventative measures first.
(Flonase spray and chlortrimeton antihistamine)

Usually thatís enough, but benedryl and decongestant are always on hand if needed.

Fortunately, the inhaler is rarely needed. Cigarette smoke is the main trigger there.
Canít blame nature for that.

No, nature makes the effort worthwhile

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

MARYJEANSL 4/12/2014 5:44PM

  Lovely pictures! I miss living in your part of the country.

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ONESPOTLEFT 4/10/2014 8:25AM

    love the pictures
thank you

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SUNSET09 4/10/2014 5:51AM

  It's simply mauvelous and emoticon for sharing! You can appreciate the wonder of it all. emoticon emoticon emoticon

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GARDENCHRIS 4/10/2014 5:30AM

    Love the picts

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DOVESEYES 4/9/2014 10:49PM

    Beautiful thanks for posting

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PHOENIX1949 4/9/2014 9:01PM

    Looks like my counter top minus my Epi-Pen and medical mask. Love the plant photos. Have a row of Iris blooming along front curb line of our house. So far, just the yellow ones have opened up -- white, lavender, and purple 'in progress.'

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ALICIA363 4/9/2014 8:55PM

    The grass is just starting to green around here ... thanks for the images of hope (and survival)!

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TERI-RIFIC 4/9/2014 6:09PM

    Beautiful. Loved seeing the pics. Nothing has bloomed here, yet I can't wait to see the blooms in real life. I'm glad you don't need the inhaler too much.

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KANSASROSE67 4/9/2014 5:32PM

    We are just beginning to see a few daffodils and forsythia blooms. I can't wait! Spring is my favorite season.

emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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STRIVERONE 4/9/2014 4:59PM

    Jealous! Those scenes are about a month off for us. I don't know what Judith would say since she is dependent on everything in your first picture and then some.

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TATERCAT 4/9/2014 2:06PM

    I love the scenes - really pretty. Spring hasn't sprung yet over here and I cannot wait for blooming flowers, shrubs, mosquitoes and flies emoticon

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MBTEPP 4/9/2014 1:24PM

    I am jealous. Spring had not sprung here yet emoticon

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COASTAL6 4/9/2014 12:18PM

    Nice blog and pictures!
Rooting for you!

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DR1939 4/9/2014 12:06PM

    Beautiful photos. Can't wait until we get similar landscapes here.

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ALIHIKES 4/9/2014 11:18AM

    Beautiful photos! And I am feeling the allergies too

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LEWILL1982 4/9/2014 10:55AM

    Beautiful pics, hope all the preventive measures work for you!

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SLIMMERJESSE 4/9/2014 9:52AM

    Lovely photos.

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LINDAKAY228 4/9/2014 9:24AM

    Nature means so much to me too and I love to be out in the spring and the fall especially!

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WUMPASTAR 4/9/2014 8:42AM

    Ooooh these pictures are BEAUTIFUL! I envy you for not having snow anymore (like the normal rest of the world) I can't even jog outside yet because there's still a lot of snow. Ah well!

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_LINDA 4/9/2014 8:12AM

    I can't wait for spring!! Lovely photos! My worst time is now with snow mold and dust blowing in the air. Finally get days warm enough to melt everything and the wind blows up a dust storm, but it is too nice to stay indoors.
I hear you on the smoke, every time I go home to my smoke filled apartment to shower or do work, I get sick -its been a relief staying at my Mom's!
Enjoy your spring days (ever consider wearing a mask? I am seriously considering it)

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ONEKIDSMOM 4/9/2014 7:55AM

    Totally identify. The cold lasting so long here has been a blessing for my sinus passages... but when it finally springs forth with the buds? I'm right there with you!

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KANOE10 4/9/2014 7:52AM

    I love your pictures! I have been seeing the same blooms on my walks. It is so beautiful. I hope you are far away from smokers in your runs.

Thanks for making me smile this am.

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