The Daily EO: May 12th, 2012

Alcohol is poison. It takes a large dose to kill us but nonetheless it is poisonous. It slows your reactions, impairs our judgement, affects our metabolism and pushes our liver to process out the toxins.  But yet, we wrap it up in fancy bottles and talk about strawberry undertones and food pairings.

The detrimental effects of processing alcohol on my body was obvious than when I ran Saturday morning. (see how committed we are?)  After consuming about 10 ozs of wine on Friday with delicious food pairings, I ate a healthy, low-calorie healthy dinner and went to bed at a reasonable time.  We drove to an area of vineyards near Emile’s parent’s house (read: nice and flat) and started out.   The flatness of the area had that dessert oasis effect where things seem much closer than they are.  I ran and I ran and I ran and when I finally made it to my goal – a cross street – I checked my GPS and found I had run . . . . . 7/10 kms.  Huh?  This is not possible!  And the worse part?  The car was now .7 kms away.

I managed to sprint, stumble, and drag myself 3.3 kms, but it wasn’t gazelle-like nor inspiring.  Emile, of course, dug deep and managed to get in 5.0 kms.  I walked another 1 km and collapsed by the car.

This is how I know alcohol is poison.  Because it couldn’t be my will that is weak.

May 12th, 2012 Extra-Ordinary:  Visiting 18 Niagara-on-the-Lake wineries today despite the first-hand knowledge of the impacts of alcohol on my body.  Food, wine, summer weather, and good company.  Who cares what tomorrow brings?

Maintenance May Day 12:
A day with Emile’s parents – a nice break for two extremely hard-working people (Family)
Baked a vegan chocolate cake that the who family could eat (vegan due to allergies) for my sister-in-law’s birthday on Sunday.  (Body/Connection)
Did not steal extra Bergamont Cupcakes at the final winery of the day despite an overwhelming desire of the delicious orange frosting and moist interior despite the host’s back being turned.  (Soul)


The Daily EO: May 8th, 2012

Oh my God.  If you have more oxygen moving around your body, you can run further.  This may seem elementary to you, and it is elementary to me.  But sometimes it just needs proving.  My body was like a busy Dim Sum restaurant’s conveyor belt – a bunch of empty plates and little food.

I told you about my iron issue a week or so ago.  And for over a week now I have taken 54 mg of iron* with Vitamin C and B12 a day in addition to my usual diet.  I hit the track today awaiting my old friend “the stitch” to return about the 1.0 km mark like it usually does.   Nope.   Not at 1.2.  Not at 1.4.  A twinge at 1.6.  And back again at 1.8.   Hmmmm.  This is strange.   Have I done anything different?  No, less sleep than I should have.  Less breakfast than I should have.  So, I was not set-up for a good run.  Yet, for the first time since the Chocolate Race, I was able to run 1.8 km without stopping.  I tried the same thing today and found the same result – 2.0 km without stopping.  And a little stitch at that point, but nothing too bothersome.

It’s a Miracle!  I’m cured!  Now if my stupid calves/shins would stop complaining all the time we’d be in business.

May 8th, 2012 Extra-Ordinary:  Being able to start to the push to build my endurance to 5 km.  Hooray! . . . . . . . . Wait, if I am cured, I have no excuse to stop running.  Dammit.

*I will be dropping my intake once I get my levels to normal.

Maintenance May Day 8:

Visited the Trinity United Church to watch a movie about Dr. Burzynski and his fight for his seemingly effective cancer treatment to be accepted by the general medical community.  Definitely one side documentary.  Definitely where you hang out on Tuesday nights in Huntsville if you are a bit crazy.  Definitely one of those nights where you wish your youthful good looks didn’t stand out so much in the blue hair forest.  Definitely made us talk on the drive home.  Definitely going to the next movie next Tuesday night – after all the crazies are the most fun.  (knowledge)

Completed a personality test as a pre-screen for an interview.  Hopefully, I have a personality.  (career)


The Daily EO: April 30th, 2012 (Fit April Results)

Any opportunity to catalogue my life, efforts and results is interesting to me.  To be able to take the chaos of life reduce it to a graph or chart makes me feel good – I have it under control.   So, this is bliss for me – I’ve been waiting to write this particular entry for weeks.

It was 5 weeks ago that I decided that I needed to deal with my Shrunken Shorts Syndrome and my husband needed to look at his Ski Jump Shirt diagnosis.  We committed ourselves to a month of exercise, healthy restricted calories and a 5K race at the end of it.  I’ll admit, we cheated a bit – we started in the last week of March.  We did consider having a binge instead, but we thought it would be too hard of a transition – and my pants were already too tight.  It became a common sight to see me in workout clothes and weighting out food on our scale.

I had challenges – a bag of marshmallows disappeared quickly at a campfire one night (and even the raw ones on subsequent days).  The Kitchener Food Show dessert samples slowed things.  Emile faced and won numerous food challenges at work – functions with chef made cookies, pizza and butter tarts.  There were days I just wanted to eat macaroni and cheese and be done with it.  And sometimes we indulged, other times we held out.  And we’re feeling pretty proud of ourselves.

So, if you want to a month of fitness (that will hopefully lead to another), here is my advice:

1.  Be obsessive about it – every calorie gets logged, every minute of exercise, and every day you weight yourself (with a digital scale).  Plan your days around food and exercise
2.  Brag about it – tell everyone you know this is what you are doing, so you have to deal with social shame if you don’t follow through
3. Create an outside force  – sign up for a class, a race, or target a wedding, or something to keep you focused for the short-term until your results are motivation enough.
4.  Find someone more committed than you are to share the challenge – my husband fit the bill perfectly
5.  Compete only with yourself.  You’ll always find someone healthy, fitter, eating more wheatgrass, but who cares about them.  This is about you!

And here is what we did in Fit April:

Susan Emile
Calories Consumed 31995 24516
Calories Burned 9008 9572
Distance Moved (km) 93.8 112.2
Fitness Minutes 1012 888


 April 30th, 2012 Extra-Ordinary:

Susan Loss: 10.2 lbs (Goal!)       Emile Loss: 21.2 lbs (What the hell?)

Susan's Results


Emile Results



















The Daily EO: April 20th, 2012

Emile and I rarely go out for dinner as of late.  We are on a loose budget and we are working hard to make April as Fit as possible.  In general, those two things do not mesh well with dining out.  After work today, Emile and I met up at the Summit Center for a run.  I had already done two – TWO! – bouts of exercise that day for a total of 1 hour and 40 minutes, plus working around the house (painting and sanding, etc).  So, then on top of that I went running for 3k.

My shins hurt, I was tired and I simply could not face going home to have a vegetable stir fry with riced cauliflower and meatless crispy tenders.   Emile said he would make it, but I wasn’t buying.  I wanted to go out for dinner and I had the calories to spare!

I suggested we head to 3 Guys and a Stove.  Emile agreed as he hadn’t been there in years.  Off we went – but he turned left when he should have turned right.  Turns out what I say out loud and what I am thinking are two different things.  So, we ended up at Tall Trees instead – because that is what I said – even if it wasn’t what I was thinking.

It was no sacrifice – believe me.

April 20th, 2012 Extra-Ordinary:  Some else made me a perfect Filet Mignon with delightfully cooked vegetables.   Presumably they even washed up.

The Daily EO: April 14th, 2012

Swimming at the public pool.  I haven’t been in more years than I can remember.  We are having a sleepover with one of my friend’s kids and we needed a cheap and fun activity.  He loves swimming, and it was $10 for all of us, so we went.  Yes, Tony Clement spent our Canadian Taxpayer’s Money somewhat frivolously and unfettered, but he did build the town of Huntsville a nice pool and Summit Center.  There are two pools, two arenas, a walking/running track, space for events, a coffee shop, a fitness center, space for classes and an active living centre all with beautiful Muskoka architecture.  Now did Obama or Sarkozy really care about the pool after spending six hours in our town for the G8?  I don’t think it made any difference to the any of them.  I’m betting that they spent their time in limos on the highway – did their photo-op on the lawn at Deerhurst Resort, met for an hour for appearances and then headed back to Toronto for the G20.  But given I have not yet heard back on my Secret Service application, I cannot be sure.  Nonetheless, Huntsville got all of this stuff that really was not warranted for the G8.  Is anyone here complaining?  Of course not.  Why would we?

The pool is a fairly standard; high ceilings, made of cinder blocks with that cavernous feeling.   It is amazing how swimming pool technology has not changed – it is the same round lane dividers, the same lap clock with the same coloured arrows that I have yet to understand completely, and the same black t-bar lanes on the bottom.  At the end of the large pool there is an expensive large scoreboard – wonder where the CBC’s funding went? – and the little mini swim meet diving boards.  The toys for the kids were robust and ample, and three of the four walls have windows for viewing on the high- or low-level.  There is even a bleacher balcony inside the area so fans can cheer on the racers.  There is a large whirlpool and a smaller pool for the younger kids to learn.  All, and all a wonderful facility.

The hot humid air, the echos, and the smell took me back to swimming lessons in the Cranbrook public pool with Mrs. Hayes.  Pool swimming has always been so much more comfortable to me.  Yes, I live in Muskoka now, and I swim in the lakes here, but I am always slightly paranoid of my wedding rings sliding off to never be found, water spiders attacking me from the dock, touching seaweed (lakeweed?), getting trapped under a dock, or being hit by a boat.  No so much that I cannot enjoy a day on the lake, but these are all cares that do not fetter pool swimming  All of my neuroses slip away, and I can float, dive, and swim to my heart’s content.

April 14th, 2012 Extra-Ordinary:  Safe from imagined dangers – and I am sure germs – at the public swimming pool.

The Daily EO: March 24, 2012

Pre-pee:  168.4

Post-pee:  167.8  (Am I the only one who does this?  I once had a 2 lb pee.  What a day.)

This can’t be right.  I think my scale is vindictive because I am ignoring its “BATT LOW” flashing.

But yet, my “comfy” jeans are tight this morning.  Ahem.  Tight again.

I don’t want to write about this particular subject – it all feels very “Bridget Jones” and makes me feel like I too am caught in the endless parade of women obsessing with their weight and appearance.  There is a “feel good in your own skin” aspect though, and I haven’t felt good in my skin for a while.

And just like anytime I find something in my life I don’t like, I ignore it for a while, then eventually take action.  By action I mean I start “things” or “challenges”.

Back in January 2008, we wanted to save a bit of money, so we decided to spent no money on food whatsoever.  Only eat what was in the house and freezer.  No groceries or restaurants.  By January 29th, there were some pretty inventive menus being dreamed up and pretty much just condiments smoothies.   Thank goodness for frozen fruits and veggies or we might have developed scurvy.

November 2007:  never drink a diet cola again.  Successfully completed.  But My god, summer is coming.  My sweet fizzy friend so perfect on a long hot humid summer day.  I miss you, but we were just no good together.

February 2011:  We only spent cash I was bringing from serving – and let me tell you cash from serving is pretty slim pickings in Muskoka in February.  That almost became a January 2008 repeat.

Or this past January when we decided to adopt a vegan diet for knowledge and to save the earth.  Boy, did I miss eggs and the earth apparently is still in jeopardy.

So, when I see these numbers on the scale and am facing shrunken short syndrome, action I do take.  That means a challenge, a “thing”.  So, I dreamed up “Fit April”.   I may it change to “Active April” due to the alliteration.  But we’ll see, because then I’ll have to change all the letterhead, and the website, so it would add in unnecessary costs in a start-up year.

Fit April 2012 is a challenge to lose 10 pounds by the end of April.   That is about 6% of my body weight and I think quite doable.  And Emile is joining me on this quest, but he hasn’t set his goals yet.

We’ve thrown again some target activities.  We both need to run/walk/crawl 20 kms a week and exercise an average of 5 times a week.  Other goals to be added.  But the best part is I signed us up for a 5 km run at the end of April!  That seems fun now.

So, you can see Fit April isn’t totally defined yet, but we are using LiveStrong to track our calories and exercise.   I used this in the past and it is fairly simple and easy, so figured the best thing to do is to use it and sign up Emile.

As I was updating my information on LiveStrong, I came across a tool that allows you to add a brag banner to your website.  Oh, that’s just great!  Terrific.  Thanks a lot LiveStrong.


March 24, 2012 Extra-Ordinary: 

Getting to put this banner on my blog: