Thursday, August 31, 2006

Happy BlogDay!

I saw the post here at That'sFit telling all about today being the 2nd annual BlogDay. There's a site here that tells its history and has instructions for participating. It's a bit late in the day for me to jump on the bandwagon this year, but I've set myself a reminder for next August 31.

Brother Cadfael

I got a coupon in an email that offered 30% off any one item at Borders, so I went right out and bought The Complete Cadfael Collection. There is a guide to all 13 episodes here. I remember when these came out I had already read many of the books by Ellis Peters, and I enjoyed the series. Now the sons have read the books and will certainly also enjoy these DVDs. #2 Son and I watched The Leper of St. Giles during lunch this afternoon.

Photo from this wikipedia page.

And here is an interesting fan video:

S_L_O_W walk

We walked the 2 1/2 miles very slowly this morning.

Breakfast: Raisin Bran and hot tea. Lunch: roll, walnuts, raisins and water with the usual Sugar Smacks for dessert, but I'm beginning to run low on the Sugar Smacks. Supper: Baked catfish filets, spinach, corn on the cob, tomato and water, with, of course, Sugar Smacks for dessert.

Wednesday, August 30, 2006

Glenn Ford has died.

Google news links are here. CNN's obituary is here. His page at is here. has a tribute site here. has lots of links here.

The photo above is from

"Stupid in America"

seen first at Kay Brooks' blog, but forgotten until I was reminded of it today at Why Homeschool.


We walked our 2 1/2 miles at the track in the park this morning in 41 minutes and 44 seconds.

Breakfast was 2 blueberry muffins and coffee at Mother's after my mammogram. My appointment was at 9:10, I got there at 8:50 and was out by 9:12. Very efficient. Not at all like the time the other clinic kept me waiting for _ hours_ after the test was completed. Mammograms are recommended everyyear or two from the age of 40 to the age of 49 and annually after that. There's a tutorial here. has information here. The American Cancer Society has information here.

Lunch: pita bread, raisins, Sun Chips and water. And, of course Sugar Smacks. Supper was white beans and cornbread and coffee.

We walked 2.1 miles in 38 minutes before bed.

Tuesday, August 29, 2006

Fisherman's Nightmare

Cloudy, overcast, muggy...

It rained after our walk. We did the 2 1/2 miles in 40 minutes and 44 seconds, which is our best time yet. I'm not sure how long we'll keep this up before we move to a 3-mile walk.

We walked 1 1/2 miles before bed. It took us 26 minutes and 31 seconds.

Breakfast: toast with Benecol, water and hot tea. Lunch: pita bread, walnuts, raisins and water. Supper: Salmon patty, corn, green beans, sweet potato and water. Bedtime snack: Sugar Smacks

We watched The Chronicles of Riddick tonight. I had seen the director's cut of this movie, but this was the PG-13 version edited for re-rating. There were some significant differences. #2 Son had never seen this and really enjoyed it. The movie site is here.

Monday, August 28, 2006

Weights again

We walked 2 1/2 miles in just over 41 minutes this morning, and then I did the Kathy Smith Lift Weights to Lose Weight DVD. I'm using 2- and 3-pd. weights. I used the step as a bench for one exercise and a chair for the others.

Breakfast: toast with Benecol and water and hot tea. Lunch: pita bread, cheese, blueberries, water and Sugar Smacks. Supper: cheese toast, walnuts and water.

I saw The Daughter today. She seems to like dorm life. We miss her but are happy she's having this experience. #1 Son likes his classes. #2 Son started 10th grade today.

Reading: Kiln People by David Brin.

Sunday, August 27, 2006

Poodle Aerobics

Sunday Psalm

Psalm 84 (KJV)

1 How amiable are thy tabernacles, O LORD of hosts!
2 My soul longeth, yea, even fainteth for the courts of the LORD: my heart and my flesh crieth out for the living God.
3 Yea, the sparrow hath found an house, and the swallow a nest for herself, where she may lay her young, even thine altars, O LORD of hosts, my King, and my God.
4 Blessed are they that dwell in thy house: they will be still praising thee. Selah.
5 Blessed is the man whose strength is in thee; in whose heart are the ways of them.
6 Who passing through the valley of Baca make it a well; the rain also filleth the pools.
7 They go from strength to strength, every one of them in Zion appeareth before God.
8 O LORD God of hosts, hear my prayer: give ear, O God of Jacob. Selah.
9 Behold, O God our shield, and look upon the face of thine anointed.
10 For a day in thy courts is better than a thousand. I had rather be a doorkeeper in the house of my God, than to dwell in the tents of wickedness.
11 For the LORD God is a sun and shield: the LORD will give grace and glory: no good thing will he withhold from them that walk uprightly.
12 O LORD of hosts, blessed is the man that trusteth in thee.

Saturday, August 26, 2006

Saturday continues to slow down

Weight: 95

I thought yesterday was slow as far as exercise went, but I haven't done anything yet today. I was so tired last night I didn't even take my night-time walk. I woke up tired this morning.

later: We did take a nice slow 1 1/2 mile walk tonight, not even checking the time.

Breakfast: raisin bread toast with Benecol and hot tea. Lunch: Mexican food out. Supper: toast and fruit, water and hot tea.

I'm looking at this site on cardio workouts today.

Friday, August 25, 2006

Busy Friday!

Lots to do today, but we started off with our 2 1/2 mile walk in 42 minutes 5 seconds.

Breakfast: 2 pieces raisin bread toast with Benecol. Lunch: pita bread with oil, blueberries, Sugar Smacks. Supper: cheese pizza, bread stick with oil. Bedtime snack: Sugar Smacks.

I'm looking at the walking site today.

We watched Laura tonight. I love this film so am always happy when someone suggests it. has a nice page on this movie here.

Thursday, August 24, 2006


I think next week I'll change my weight routine from MWF to MTh. I'm not sore -just tired.

We walked the 2 1/2 miles in 45 minutes 27 seconds this morning and plan on continuing the 2 1/2 mile distance for at least another week before moving up to 3 miles.

Before bed we walked 1 1/2 miles in about 28 minutes.

Breakfast: 2 slices raisin bread toast with Benecol and water. Lunch: pita bread with dipping oil, orange slices, spinach/tomato salad, Sugar Smacks and water. Supper: cheese omelet, home-made biscuits, spinach/tomato salad, water.

I'm checking out this site today.

Wednesday, August 23, 2006

2nd day of weights

We walked 2 1/2 miles in 44 minutes 44 seconds. After we got back I did the upper and lower body segments of Kathy Smith's Lift Weights to Lose Weight DVD -the same one I did Monday. I had more trouble with it today, with muscle fatigue I didn't feel Monday. She suggests alternating 6 weeks of this program with 6 weeks of the track that uses heavier weights. I'm using 2- and 3-pound weights and no weights on my legs. I skipped the abs routine. I have so much trouble with ab exercises.

After supper we did a 1-mile walk. Before bed I did Leslie Sansone's 3-mile walk.

I'm more tired than usual today and have some soreness.

Breakfast: 2 pieces of raisin bread toast with Benecol and hot tea. Lunch: roll with dipping oil, cheddar cheese, blueberries, water. Supper: wild rice with zucchini, green beans, tomato/spinach salad, orange wedges, water. Sugar Smacks for dessert for lunch and for a bedtime snack.

Tuesday, August 22, 2006

The Step

We walked 2 1/2 miles at the park in a little over 56 minutes this morning. My step came yesterday, so after my walk I did the beginner part of Kathy Smith's Step Workout DVD without the arm movements. There are some free instructional step videos here.

Breakfast: 2 pieces of raisin bread toast with Benecol and Constant Comment tea. Lunch: Sourdough roll with dipping oil, blueberries, Sugar Smacks and water. Supper: Spaghetti, french bread, Sugar Smacks and water.

Monday, August 21, 2006

The Firm

Yeah, well, I tried The Firm Super Cardio Mix DVD, and it required entirely too much modification to be a useful addition to my program. Whew! I may never be in good enough shape to do this one.

I followed it with Kathy Smith's Lift Weights to Lose Weight DVD. This was the 2nd time I've used it. I did not complete the abs routine but was able to do the upper and lower body routines using 2- and 3-lb. weights. I've found a bench here that I can use, so I follow the program as she does it. This will be a regular part of my MWF weight work.

We had a nice 22-minute 1-mile walk before bed.

I skipped breakfast. Lunch: tuna, sweet pickle, pita bread with dipping oil and banana. Supper: Spinach Canneloni and coffee. I had water and Sugar Smacks with both meals.

I stopped in at the DVD store tonight looking for exercise videos and found one on bellydancing. Hmmm... Wonder how silly I'd look doing bellydancing.

Sunday, August 20, 2006

Sunday Psalm

Psalm 111 (KJV)

1 Praise ye the LORD. I will praise the LORD with my whole heart, in the assembly of the upright, and in the congregation.
2 The works of the LORD are great, sought out of all them that have pleasure therein.
3 His work is honourable and glorious: and his righteousness endureth for ever.
4 He hath made his wonderful works to be remembered: the LORD is gracious and full of compassion.
5 He hath given meat unto them that fear him: he will ever be mindful of his covenant.
6 He hath shewed his people the power of his works, that he may give them the heritage of the heathen.
7 The works of his hands are verity and judgment; all his commandments are sure.
8 They stand fast for ever and ever, and are done in truth and uprightness.
9 He sent redemption unto his people: he hath commanded his covenant for ever: holy and reverend is his name.
10 The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom: a good understanding have all they that do his commandments: his praise endureth for ever.

Saturday, August 19, 2006

I have not tried a treadmill yet, but....

H.T. to

Increased distance

weight: 95

We walked 2 1/2 miles at the park today in 52 ' 23". My heart rate ranged from 112 to 137 during our time on the track, so I'm not able to keep it at a steady level. When I got home I did Kathy Smith's New Yoga Intermediate DVD. I liked this video. I was afraid that "intermediate" would be too advanced for me, but 2 of the 4 people on the DVD offer clear modifications for beginners and those who are less flexible. It is a 55-minute routine broken into 2 segments with a short relaxation in between, so you have a good place to stop if you don't want to complete the entire video. It's been a long time since I did any yoga and I'm not sure I'm maintaining correct form, but Kathy Smith emphasizes going as far into the pose as you comfortably can while keeping proper form. It's the form that's important.

I skipped breakfast somehow, but lunch was a sourdough roll with dipping oil, blueberries, walnuts, water, Sugar Smacks for dessert and coffee.

Friday, August 18, 2006

The 2-Week Mark

Weight: 95

It's been 2 weeks since I started my new exercise plan. This morning we were back to walking in the park, but our 2 miles took over 44 minutes. We were slow. Tonight I did the 15-minute tai chi segment of Kathy Smith's Cardio Knockout DVD. It was divided into 2 sections, each led by a different person. This was a very light exercise day.

Breakfast: 2 blueberry muffins and tea at Mother's. Lunch: sourdough roll with dipping oil, walnuts, a banana, water and Sugar Smacks for dessert. Supper: waffle with blueberries & walnuts, water and coffee.

Thursday, August 17, 2006

More Kathy Smith

Reating Heart Rate: 57

Weight: 95

This morning I did Kathy Smith's Kickboxing program. I picked it up because I had read reviews saying it was a good aerobics program for beginners. It challenged me, and there were times that she said to go "up to tempo" when I did half-time instead. I made it to the end of the workout with modifications, and it'll be good to see my progress as I get stronger. It was fun. I'll probably use this one once a week or so.

Tonight I did the Leslie Sansone 3-mile walk again. My dh says I should use the heart rate monitor to check myself during the exercises, so I'll start that tomorrow.

Breakfast: swiss mocha (I got a late staart today). Lunch: pita bread with dipping oil, blueberries, squash & zucchini, water and Sugar Smacks. Supper: Scrambled eggs, toast with orange marmalade, mushrooms, orange wedges, water, coffee and Moose Tracks ice cream for dessert.

Wednesday, August 16, 2006

Aerobic step

Resting Heart Rate: 57

Weight: 96

I've been researching "the step" with an eye on buying one. The only ones I can find in local stores are the shorter kind that are about 24" long. I've seen Reebok steps, Sports Authority steps, The Step Body Fusion Kit and The Step Home Trainer. I haven't seen the longer 40" step in any stores where I've looked, but it is available online.

I did the Leslie Sansone Walk Away the Pounds Walk Strong DVD this morning. She calls it the equivalent of a 2-mile walk but says it's better because she incorporates arm movements with weights at intervals. I didn't like this one as much because I felt like the interval weight work interrupted my morning "walk". I think I'd rather do the aerobic exercise as a unit and do strength training separately. If I could only find a beginner-level strength training dvd that didn't require major equipment purchases. I don't know anything about the concept of interval training, though, so there are probably benefits to it that I just don't know about.

In the mid-afternoon I did Leslie Sansone's 1-mile walk. It was an easy 15-minutes, and I just did it in my regular clothes. It made for a nice break.

Tonight I did the Kathy Smith Moving Through Menopause program again, but this time I skipped the strength training segment and only did the aerobics and yoga sections. I really do think I'd rather have aerobics without weights that I could do every day and then some separate strength training DVDs that I could use on MWF.

I forgot all about breakfast, but lunch was pita bread with dipping oil, blueberries, water and Sugar Smacks for dessert. Supper was at the church where I ate spaghetti, french bread, salad, coffee, angel food cake and vanilla ice cream.

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

Putting the new tools to use

Resting heart rate: 54

Weight: 95

DH is going out of town for a few days and had to leave early this morning, so we didn't walk. I plan on substituting a video for the walk a bit later.

update: I did the Leslie Sansone 1-mile express walk, skipping the cooldown and moving straight into the 2-mile express walk. They are on the same DVD and it worked ok, but I think the 3-mile express walk DVD would work better. I'll pick it up soon and try it.

update again: I did the 3-mile walk this afternoon and liked it. I enjoy Sansone's DVDs so far. Tonight I previewed Kathy Smith's Weight Loss Workout and did some of it. The camera work seemed determined to focus everywhere but on the feet during the leg segments, and I had a bit of trouble seeing what she was doing. I'll know more when I do the full video. She follows the exercise routine with an explanation of her suggested diet plan -1200 calories a day taken from the 4 food groups (starches/fruits&veggies being most important and meats&beans/dairy being eaten with less frequency). Very basic.

Breakfast: raisin bran with extra raisins and hot tea. Lunch: Cozymel's chicken flauta and chicken enchilada with beans and rice and coke. Supper: tuna, pita bread with dipping oil, blueberries, water, Sugar Smacks and coffee.

Monday, August 14, 2006

Overdoing it yesterday hurt...

I walked the 2 miles this morning, but it took 44 minutes and I wasn't able to continue the activity with an exercise video when I got home. I'll keep my options open and may use a video later in the day.

I did use a video in the mid-afternoon: Leslie Sansone's Brisk 2-Mile Walk. This is the 2nd of her DVDs I've done, having done the 1-mile walk a few days ago. This is very doable. It's easy to follow while still getting my heart rate up. Besides the walk-in-place move she includes side-to-side movement, knee raises, leg kicks, spreading the legs out a bit and back kicks to vary the walk and add interest. She uses the stretchie with this one, too, to add a bit of arm motion and resistance. I just moved my arms without the stretchie, but I bought a set of 3 this afternoon and will incorporate that next time. I think adding more of her videos to my rotation would be a good idea.

We waited about an hour after supper and took a 30-minute stroll -about 1 1/2 miles. My heart rate was 119 half-way through and 120 when we finished.

I bought a few other things today besides the stretchie. I bought a simple analog bathroom scale, a wrist watch-style heart rate monitor, a pair of 1-pound ankle weights and a couple of 3-pound hex weights. I also bought a basic Pilates DVD to give to my sister and niece for Christmas.

I had raisin bran with 1/4 cup extra raisins, hot tea and water for breakfast. Lunch was 1/2 turkey sandwich on regular sandwich bread with lettuce, tomato and sliced mushroom; some fritos and salsa; water; and Sugar Smacks. Supper was 3 bean tacos (soft shell) with lettuce, tomato and mushroom and water. I had Sugar Smacks and coffee for a bedtime snack. I'm having a cup of hot tea now.

Sunday, August 13, 2006

Taking the day off

I skipped breakfast except for coffee but had baked potato with sour cream; salad with lettuce, tomato and sliced mushroom; steamed squash and zucchini; and spice cake and mint chocolate chip ice cream for lunch. Supper was 1/2 of a turkey sub sandwich with lettuce and tomato; fritos and salsa; and more cake and ice cream.

We didn't exercise today, taking it as a rest day, but we did decide to take a short stroll before supper. We got carried away, though, and walked for an hour at a slow easy pace.

I want one of those heart rate monitors that looks like a wrist watch.

I want a bathroom scale.

Sunday Psalm

Psalm 130 (KJV)

1 Out of the depths have I cried unto thee, O LORD.
2 Lord, hear my voice: let thine ears be attentive to the voice of my supplications.
3 If thou, LORD, shouldest mark iniquities, O Lord, who shall stand?
4 But there is forgiveness with thee, that thou mayest be feared.
5 I wait for the LORD, my soul doth wait, and in his word do I hope.
6 My soul waiteth for the Lord more than they that watch for the morning: I say, more than they that watch for the morning.
7 Let Israel hope in the LORD: for with the LORD there is mercy, and with him is plenteous redemption.
8 And he shall redeem Israel from all his iniquities.

Saturday, August 12, 2006

Saying "No" to Aeroboxing

We did the 2 mile walk in 35 minutes 22 seconds this morning. My heart rate was 140. When we got home I previewed Kathy Smith's Aerobox Workout. Way too much for me at my (lack of ) fitness level. The intensity just looks like more than I can handle.

Breakfast was raisin bran, water and coffee. For lunch I had water, 1/2 of a turkey sub with swiss cheese, lettuce, tomato and pickle. I ate Sugar Smacks for dessert.

My report came yesterday from my physical exam, and my LDL cholesterol level is 106. That's higher than I'd like to see it, so I'll be cutting out butter and sour cream and cutting down on cheese. This exercise program ought to help some, too, so motivation to continue shouldn't be a problem.

Friday, August 11, 2006

Singin' in the Rain

Well, not singing, but walking. It wasn't raining when we left the house, but by the time we had walked to the track (which takes about 5 minutes) and had almost finished the first 1/2 mile it was steadily drizzling. The rain kept picking up, but we kept walking and finished the 2 miles in 35 1/2 minutes. My heart rate was 150 when I checked it, but I didn't feel winded at all. When I got back to the house I changed into dry clothes and tried out Kathy Smith's Lift Weights to Lose Weight DVD. That was a mistake. I haven't had any trouble doing an aerobics video after the 2-mile walk, but I've never done any weight work before. I couldn't always finish the number of repetitions. I think I'll use this program at another time of day next time. There were a number of frustrations for me in using this. She emphasizes maintaining good form, but I really can't tell if I'm doing that or not. My dh has agreed to spot me to check that out. Another frustration is that at the beginning she says you'll need a chair _or_ a bench but then at one point gives instructions to lie on the bench. I had to sit that one out completely, as lying on my chair didn't seem like a great idea. There are 3 segments: a 20-minute upper body workout, a 20-minute lower body workout and a short abs segment. The upper body work-out uses 2 sets of weights. She suggests 3- and 5-pounds, but I used 2-pound weights as that is all I have. I think I'll get 3-pound weights to use for the heavy sets; I just think 5 pounds is too heavy for me. The lower body section uses lots of leg lifts, squats and lunges. My last frustration came in the abs workout. All her fellow exercisers were well-trained, flat-tummied and strong in this area. I'm totally inexperienced, poochy-tummied and very weak in this area. She offered no accomodations for those who can't already accomplish the sit-up tasks. I can barely raise my shoulders off the ground while on my back, much less raise even further for counts 2 and 3, but I don't know how to adjust the activity so that I'll reap any benefit from it. I'll be skipping the abs segment for a (long) time and looking for a video with doable abs exercises.

For breakfast I had raisin bran and hot tea. For lunch I had 1/2 of a turkey sub sandwich (with lettuce, tomato and swiss cheese), a sweet pickle, a banana, water and Sugar Smacks for dessert.

My opthalmology appointment went well. My uncorrected vision is 20/25, I don't need new glasses and my eyes are healthy with no signs of glaucoma. He talked about the eventual need for bifocals when I start wearing glasses more often, but now I only wear them to drive. I use reading glasses sometimes.

image from wikimedia

Thursday, August 10, 2006

More exercising

Today I walked 2 miles in 40 minutes, and my heart rate during the walk has gone down since I started doing this. It was 119 right after today's walk. Then I used a new video: Leslie Sansone's Walk Away the Pounds 1-mile walk. It was an easy routine to follow, just like it says: "walk." She varies walking in place by adding easy steps of side steps, kicks, knee lefts, widening the stance and back kicks. She uses a "stretchie" for some resistance training, but, as I don't have one, I did the arm movements without it. This may be the perfect non-threatening beginner exercise video for those who just want to increase their activity level. It's uncomplicated, starts off slow, builds up gradually, eases off for a cool-down and finishes with stretches. Not much in the way of stretches, though. She cues you when you've reached the half-mile point and talks a bit about the music setting the pace. There is a group of people exercising with her, and she encourages you by mentioning the ages of the oldest (72) and youngest (28) and praising the 55-year-old grandmother there who had lost a lot of weight with the program. There is a lot of "you can do this" and "doesn't this feel good" pep talk throughout the mile.

For breakfast I had 2 pieces of wheat toast with butter, cranberry juice and hot tea. For lunch I had 1/2 of a turkey sub with lettuce, tomato and swiss cheese with water, a dill pickle spear, blueberries and Sugar Smacks for dessert. For supper I had a salmon patty, canned asparagus, cranberry sauce, 1/2 of a baked sweet potato and water with more sugar smacks for dessert to go with my coffee.

We walked a mile before bed tonight after watching a Babylon 5 episode on dvd. It took us a little over 20 minutes. More information on Babylon 5 is here and here. I'm a fan from the original airing of the first episode.

Wednesday, August 09, 2006

Getting Healthy

My dh says that keeping a record of my progress and program might be motivating for me, so I thought I'd do that here.

My goal is to improve my overall fitness. That ought to be easy to attain since it's such a broad goal.

So far I've been walking every day (but not Sunday) and have done an aerobics video every day. The first 4 days I did Richard Simmons videos in this order: Sweatin' to the Oldies 1, 2 and 3, and Sweat and Shout. The Richard Simmons videos seemed to get a bit more strenuous through the series, but I may just have been wearing out. The first one is the only one to use floor exercises. The 2nd one is the only one to use weights and a chair. I'll be rotating these with other videos. I've heard that most people who start with videos quit when they tire of the few they have. I'm taking steps to avoid that temptation. I've been doing some research, I've made a list, and now I'm picking up DVD's to rotate.

Today I walked 2 miles at the park in 40 minutes and did the Kathy Smith Moving Through Menopause video. I really like this video. There are 3 sections: the first is an aerobics workout, the second is an easy weight routine, and the last is a yoga session. It's easy enough for me to be able to make it through the entire routine, while providing options for ramping up when I'm more experienced and easing off when I tire. She's cheerful and motivating without being "perky" or silly. I felt comfortable doing the activities and wouldn't have been embarrassed for someone to walk in on me -not always true of the Richard Simmons programs. She provides intros with helpful health information which can be skipped to move straight from one exercise segment to the other. The DVD includes information on menopause, symptom relief, general diet and supplement information for menopausal and peri-menopausal women and encouragement to visit Kathy Smith's web presence at That site at is no longer active.

I'm also going to track my diet here. I'm not overweight and not in a weight-loss program, but part of healthy living is a healthy diet. If I write it out I'm sure I'll be better able to see ways to improve it. I had 2 pieces of wheat toast with butter and a cup of Constant Comment tea for breakfast. For lunch I had pita bread with dipping oil, cheddar cheese, blueberries and a coke. Supper was the church fellowship meal. Tonight was chicken from Sam's, which I never eat, so I had the mashed potatoes, green peas, apples cooked with cinnamon, and ice cream. Not a healthy meal. If I've figured right my total calorie intake for today was 1413.25. That seems about right, and it's a typical food day for me (except for the supper). I've seen so many estimates for how many calories I should eat to maintain my current weight -from 1126 to 1734) that I won't be counting the calories as a general rule.

(photo from Flickr)