I’m running around like a mad fiend. Feast time is upon us and I have lots to do. But I wanted to quickly tell you guys that I tried Zumba again and I LOVE IT EVEN MORE! 🙂
The beginning is the most important part of the work.
As I posted Friday, I joined a gym. To be specific, I joined Curves. I love that I can go there and just use the machines and follow the video for cardio, all without really thinking about it. The trainer tells you when you’re doing it wrong (as I so totally was, over and over this morning) and so you can be sure that you’re not doing something stupid that will hurt you. LOVE THAT!
So this morning, I went in and got started. They have these smart card machines, that I will eventually get to use my card on, that gauge how well you can do a certain machine and will level you up as time goes on, making your workouts harder in specific ways as you progress towards even more fitness. I love that I don’t have to keep track of that. It sounds fantastic. But first I get to spend a couple weeks getting used to using the machines and getting my strength & speed up so the machine will recognize I’m doing something. (I did have a moment this morning where the trainer said “Are you just extra tired or what?!” and I gently reminded her that a) I had RA and b) it’s been about two years since I’ve done any working out at all, really. Baby steps, lady. Baby steps.
The workout went well, for the most part, except that my heart rate was way off the chart only three stations in. The trainer said that the smart card machines would require me to take a time out before I was allowed back on and if that kept going on, I would need to see my doctor before I could work out again. (Never fear! I am not ever terribly far out from a doctor’s visit. I will talk to mine about it in a week or so when I go back in.)
All in all? Today was a success! 🙂
To enjoy the glow of good health, you must exercise.
After a month of pros & cons lists, visiting local gyms either via online tours or in person, and asking lots of people lots of questions about their exercising and health efforts, I have finally joined a gym. (I see you out there looking shocked. You may close your mouths now. 😉 )
I know it’s taken me some time, but I’m finally ready to get back on the health bandwagon. Some may be amused that I’m starting so near to the Feast of Tabernacles, but I am all about starting now that I’m ready, rather than waiting until some nebulous “perfect time” that never will come.
Fitness plans (this week and next)
- I’m already taking a daily walk with the dog. Started that just this week. It calms us both down and makes us happy. Win!
I joined the gym. I learned the machines this morning, but there will be someone there every day, every hour they are open to answer my silly questions. This was a big deal to me. I forget how to do a lot of things (like brushing my teeth. how can you forget that? My mind is a seriously weird place.).
- Tomorrow I will be resting from this week’s craziness. Resting is a goodness.
- Sunday, I will find my FLEX, charge it, and then I might go to the gym. I forgot to ask their hours. Oh wait, they may be in the stack of papers the trainer handed me. I dumped them in my inbox and forgot about them. Hmm.
- Monday, I will go back to the gym and try out the circuit. It will be good because I tried the machines today and only one made me want to cry. The trainer said that was the machine everyone hates the most. Well, yay for that machine. That night I will look at my stats on the computer because they should be available by then.
- Tuesday I am trying out Zumba for the first time. They promised not to laugh at me. I am glad about that. I am not terribly coordinated when it comes to watching someone do something and then doing it myself. I hope I don’t hurt anyone.
- Wednesday, I am taking a break. My trainer said I should have a couple in there during the week to let my muscles rest. Woo hoo! (Also, I have Bible Study Fellowship on Wednesday mornings.)
- Thursday, I am either doing more Zumba or the circuit again. It depends on whether I broke myself and/or others doing Zumba on Tuesday.
- Friday, I will go do the circuit again. I will check my stats again and I will be happy that I finished out the week. 🙂
I measured in this morning at -1 pound from last week (-5 overall) and -1 inch of my waist, hips, & thighs (just since last week, since I didn’t measure everything that first week; forgot to measure my arms). Which includes the 2.5 cheat days I’ve had, either accidentally or on purpose. I think I’m doing well. It’s very nice to have something going all right. I’ve also found all my workout videos and weights and exercise bands in the last week, too. 🙂
After I spent yesterday perusing the blog carnival about pain scales, I came to the conclusion that a) my pain level, regardless of scale, is usually only about 2 or 3 in a few joints, with occasional forays into 4s and 5s when I’m in a flare. So when I had my 6 month check-in with the rheumatologist today, I decided that instead of asking for the next big gun treatment, I was going to ask for another stop-gap measure, something I’d read about on other people’s blogs that had never been offered to me: a pain relieving, anti-inflammatory gel.
I didn’t start off with that, of course. I told him about my last few months, about how I only flare when I’ve got big things going on (of the stressful variety. ie. Thanksgiving or Christmas) or I do something exceptionally stupid (moving furniture, driving long distances, trying to do all the Christmas crafting in one week, etc.). I told him about my prednisone tapers and how they’d helped. I told him about my in-between days when I’m feeling all right and the days that I can barely move my fingers and I’m not fine. He told me my next option was the IV drugs and physical therapy. I said “No, thank you” and then mentioned the gel. He said the only reason they hadn’t offered it was that it doesn’t always work and that it was kind of expensive. “More expensive than IV drugs and physical therapy?” No, not at all.
And so that’s what I’m doing. More prednisone when I’m flaring (with a phone call in to the office to let them know), anti-inflammatory gel for the in between pain, working on my PT at home from my PT Folder o’ Goodness, and follow up in 6 months.
Last week I ended the week kind of on a down note, as I had a bad migraine, didn’t get my exercise in 2 of my 5 days, and knew I had a cheat night scheduled for the weekend ( I get one a week). But I got up two mornings in a row and weighed myself and am officially 4 pounds lighter this week than last week this time. I know 2 pounds were related to lady days, but the other two were from my diet and exercise. 🙂 So now I’m 8% down the path to my goal weight (Yes, I made myself a chart so I could know how much of the path I’d gone down).
…an update. 🙂
So far, so good, I guess. I’ve been tracking my food again on Sparkpeople.com, as they have more food in their calculator than the other place did. (Plus they let me start over.) I’ve been doing really well, calorie-wise, even despite one unintended meal out (Subway, I picked from their low-cal list and came in right on budget) and some interesting meals to try to gauge info on. (Most stuff you can figure it out if you know what proportion of ingredients went in to your particular plateful of food) I am not feeling in any way undernourished and I’m enjoying my lunchtime salads. This week I’ve had one that was Italian (spring mix & American veggie mix combined, sliced real olives, turkey pepperoni, zesty free-Italian dressing), one Mexican (fajita meat, guacamole, salsa, American veggie mix with carrots), one egg salad (boiled eggs, a dab of mayo to hold them together with spring mix instead of bread, crumbled turkey bacon), and one off the back of the Fat-free Ranch dressing bottle (kidney beans, ranch dressing, carrots, American veggie mix, onions). Breakfasts have basically been a flavored oatmeal, a fruit, sometimes some turkey bacon. I’ve been trying to wean myself off the caffeine and drink more water than tea/coffee. Some days I have snacks, other days I eat more dinner instead. It just depends on the day.
Exercise had gone well until yesterday, when my husband was unexpectedly home in the morning during my workout time (his gym just closed without notice). I didn’t manage to exercise at all, but I also didn’t really feel like eating much yesterday either, so we’ll just count it as even? Something like that. The only problem with this exercise thing so far is that I get up, do it, feel fine all during the doing, then when I stop I get this ferocious headache. It’s migraine level pain, but it’s not a migraine –it’s all over the front of my head, not just one side; lights do not make it worse; I am not nauseated. Fortunately for me, I see my neurologist next Thursday, so I can ask her opinion on these headaches. Today I do have a true migraine. I haven’t had one in a while. I think this one was brought on by a trip to Bath & BodyWorks. I hate this weird scent sensitivity that I’ve developed the last couple years. It’s really annoying.
Also next week I get to see the rheumatologist. I’m looking forward to that; we’re going to discuss the drug situation and see if we can get me on something I can live with. 🙂
Happy New Year! Over at Life According to Lisa, I’ve been talking about the resolutions I’ve been making for my regular daily life. Some of them are health related, like losing 50 pounds, and some are not, like my goal of writing every day. But I was thinking this morning “what are my health resolutions? what kind of health goals do I need to make?” So here are the things I’ve been thinking about:
1. Losing 50 pounds is not just going to be good for my family photos, but it is going to help every aspect of my life. Losing 50 pounds is going to help all my joints by not placing so much stress on them. Losing 50 pounds is going to help my heart and blood pressure. Losing 50 pounds is going to be awesome.
a. Part of this goal is me exercising more. I’m being more open minded about it this time around, looking at things like Belly Dancing and Bike Riding rather than just generic exercise videos. I’ve started by asking for help on the video suggestions first, but once the weather gets more regular, I’m going to look into some outdoor exercise options. I’ve also dragged back out my balance ball exercises and other things that were suggested as part of my physical therapy last year.
b. Another part of this goal is diet. I’m not just looking into losing weight, I’m looking at foods that will help fight inflammation, foods that will help lessen my migraines, foods that will help me sleep better at night, foods that won’t make me feel ill. Nick had already started putting some of those foods into our dinners, but I’m looking at putting those into my lunches, snacks, and breakfasts as well.
2. Talk to the doctor about getting back on something for my anxiety/depression issues. I’m going to bring this up with the neurologist this upcoming week. I’m sure y’all could see that last year I was up and down and back and forth and all over the place. It just took me a while to catch on. I’ve been reading back in my personal journal again and seeing all the signs. It is just so.very.hard to admit to it and do something about it.
3. Being more proactive in general about my health. Making sure I see the rheumatologist from time to time, not just the PA. Keeping my headache and pain diaries up to date. Etc.