Friday, January 10, 2014
The craziness of a new semester in school has officially started. I am currently in the Health Information Management/Medical Coding degree program at college. I don't mind the material, but it has a horrible amount of homework--it's just insane. It is four years of information crammed into two years. Note the lovely books for these 4 months of torture:
So last semester, I got off track. I was working 2 hours a day at school, in class for 4-5 hours, coming home and doing a couple hours of homework, then would go to work for 4-5 hours cleaning businesses, come home and do homework until 1 or 2 AM every night (or until I could no longer keep my eyes open) the entire week. My week homework consisted of studying for massive med term tests, anatomy tests-I averaged having about 16 tests a month in six classes. Then, during the weekend, I would have to sit and do about 15-20 hours worth of homework to catch up. I had absolutely no down time. None. The week before finals, I literally hit a wall of both physical and mental exhaustion. I have never felt like that before, and hope to never feel that way again. I had 8 tests in four days during finals week, some of those being 400-500 points.
I decided that I needed to make some changes.
1. As much as I need the money, I had to leave my night job. It was great exercise-janitorial work for 5 hours a night, (and hours were getting added) but apparently the amount of homework is doubling this semester, so I needed to let go of it. I am still going to work at the school, but things are going to get tight.
2. I had to get back on the treadmill and start watching what I eat. When I was doing janitorial work, I could never get enough food. Unfortunately, now I am still eating whatever I want, and a week after leaving my job, I am gaining weight-so I need to watch myself as I am not burning all those calories anymore.
3. I need to take time for myself. If it is the difference between getting an A or a B, then I guess I'll get that B. Everyone needs some downtime. EVERYONE. My family and friends were afraid to ask things of me because I was so busy, and it made me feel horrible. It's not happening this semester.
So wish me luck. My profs are making our program start almost a week before everybody else because we have so much homework. I'm really dreading this semester and am second-guessing my decision to be in this program on a daily basis. If you don't see me much on here, it is not because I have left or forgotten, but that I probably only have time to track my fitness; but I will be around.
Friday, January 03, 2014
That's right. Wool socks. Maybe not the coolest type of clothing on the planet, but in this weather, sort of necessary.
Speaking of weather, if you have had the opportunity to watch the news in the last 24 hours, you would notice that it's been nothing but one big loop of news about the snow and "cold" hitting the northeast. Now, if you are from the northeast, and you are reading this, don't get mad. I know you guys aren't used to the type of weather that you are currently going through, but to those of us in the midwest and northern plains, we are probably trying to hold back a bit of a smile.
See, today is technically 16 above zero, but the wind is so strong, it feels like below zero. We are spending our time here in MN standing in long lines at the grocery store so we can buckle down for the next few days. We are putting gas in our cars (and it is so cold that a lot of the pumps are barely working), HEET in our gas tanks so our lines don't freeze, and yes, buying things like wool socks. Just for the record, I'm pretty sure I'm up to about six pair now.
You see, Monday, it is supposed to feel like 60 below zero. And that is in my part of the state where it is warmer than places like, say, International Falls, one of the coldest places on the planet. 60 below zero.It is cold enough that the Governor has closed down all public schools on Monday, this first that has happened sing the 1990 era. Just for the record, if you have an uncovered area of your body, in those windchills, you can have frostbite in less than two minutes. It's not safe to be outside, really. We'll have some hearty people in MN, WI, ND, and SD try it, of course, but for the most part, lots of people will be staying home.
But some tips for my friends from the NE: dress warm, not for fashion. Have an emergency kit in your car, because you never know when any car will break down. And when you think "my goodness, it can't get any worse than this!" Remember your friends in the midwest driving to work in -60 temps.
Oh, and repeat after me: SPRING IS COMING, SPRING IS COMING, SPRING IS COMING!!
Tuesday, December 31, 2013
So, I ended the year by getting myself a physical. Although my thyroid is always checked every year (I have a history of subacute thyroiditis), I haven't gotten a physical for quite a while. Like seven years. I know, I know....
Diabetes runs in my family. My mom had it, my sister has it, my maternal grandfather had it---the deciding factor in all of it is their weight. Well, I'm not exactly the perfect weight, so it is something that I worry about. Then there is cholesterol. I have never had issues with my cholesterol, but bad hearts run in our family, so it's another thing I worry about.
Well, here are the results.
My weight has now been maintained for three years. Personally, I want to continue to lose the weight-but I seem stuck here in the 205-210 range permanently (I have an almost 40 pound loss with maintenance). Although my doctor recognizes it is not my ideal weight, he is very happy with the fact that I have kept the weight I have lost off. He told me to keep losing slow and steady. Since exercise isn't my problem, it's mainly my sweet tooth that needs work...
My general lab results were perfect.
My blood glucose was perfect at 76 (There may or may not have been clapping when I heard this result)
My cholesterol is perfect. My triglycerides are a whopping 55, with all the other numbers on the low end of what is required.
Pretty sure I was skipping out of the office, and my doctor was very happy with the results.
What does this all mean? My body has stuck with me through all of the crap I've put it through again this year. And trust me, peeps, I have put an amazing amount of stress on this body and eaten like crap. It's time to start treating it right again.
I personally love New Years Eve. It's a new beginning. Although I don't have a specific number for weight loss that I want, I would like to have a weight loss this year, and also maintain what has already been done. I want to continue to get healthy and keep those numbers where they need to be. No more excuses.
So I hope you all have a wonderful and happy New Year. Stay safe out there tonight. Me? I will be at work until 10. I am coming home and finding my "good things that have happened this year" jar, and reading everything I have put in there throughout the year. Although it has been a tough one, good things did happen. Sometimes it is hard to remember, and I think this brings it all back. I'm gonna have a glass of wine and toast the year. Bittersweet, really.
Monday, March 11, 2013
A couple of weeks ago, I arrived home from work only to find that my dad needed me to take him to the emergency room. The culprit: Congestive Heart Failure due to a bad Aortic Valve.
Bad news continued to follow-he needs surgery, but if he is not a candidate for a special surgery, he is considered terminal and has less than a year. (We find out on Mar 27th). He has stage 5 kidney disease. He has atrial fibrillation.
I was so stressed out, that the thought of food made me ill. I dropped seven pounds in a week, simply because I could not eat. Here I am, 31 years old, faced with the possibility that I may lose my second parent (my mom died of cancer when I was 22). I sat in the heart cardiac unit for a week straight, eight hours a day, learning all there is to know about low sodium diets, low sugar diets, medications, and all the rest. It was mind-numbing.
After the week, my dad improved enough to come home, he met with two cardiologists, and I am somewhat cautiously optimistic about the outcome, but with the experience I had with my mom, I just can't fully believe that everything is going to be fine. I just can't.
I have a schedule down, work, make him three meals a day and make sure he gets all his meds and that I measure his sodium and fluid throughout the day. Physical exhaustion has turned into mental exhaustion; I'm able to eat again, but have decided to pretty much follow my dad's diet, minus his fluid requirements.
I've continued to lose weight this week, but now it is because of much lower sodium-you guys should check out the sodium in products. IT IS INSANE! I don't want any crap in my diet, because I turn and look at the sodium content and put it back down. I'm back to exercising ( I think I missed three days when I was stuck in a nasty motel during a snowstorm). After two weeks, I can literally smell sodium when it is cooking. My favorite wild rice soup is now disgusting to me, because all I can taste is salt in the broth.
My dad is feeling better so far, and he has to weigh himself everyday to find out if he is gaining fluid. So far so good. I ask for your thoughts or prayers when my dad goes back for all his tests. This has already been a really long month.
Friday, February 08, 2013
Well, I finished my first round of the 30 Day Shred and thought I would update you on the results.
Pounds lost: 7
Chest: 0 inches
Hips: 2 inches
Upper Stomach: 1 inch
Lower Stomach: 2.5 inches
Natural Waist: 2.5 inches
Butt: I initially lost 1 inch, but then I gained 1 inch
Mid Thigh on both legs: 0 inches
L. Upper thigh .5 Inches (about the only place on my legs that I have fat, so I was happy to see that.)
R. Upper thigh : 0 inches
Arms: .5 inches
Calves: 1 inch
Lower Arm: Gain of .5 inches
When I started the DVD, I could NOT do any type of pushup other than a wall pushup, not even one on my knees. I can now do three whopping regular pushups in a row...
All in all, I enjoyed it, although I do tend to get bored doing the same thing day after day, and would consider that about the only bad thing for me regarding the DVD. And in all honesty, I think the heavier you are the harder it is. Not to say you can't do it, because I managed it, but I think it is easier on your joints etc., when you don't have a lot of weight to lose but want to tone. If you are heavier like me and decide to do the program, I would highly suggest starting out with what YOU are comfortable with. If something doesn't work for you, do a different exercise during that time.
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