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Tuesday, October 28, 2008

HealthQuest2008 - October: Yoga-ta stop eating all that sugar!

I failed to give an update to HealthQuest2008 in September cause I was just so gosh darn busy finishing up the law school apps, getting prepared to climb the mountain, and being excited about my trip to Berkeley (which I will write about soon -- I'm busy transcribing a couple of the talks that I recorded).

So, long story short from September: I gave up alcohol for the entire month with the exception of one pint-sized beer that I had at the Bohemian. (I simply can't go to the Bohemian and not get a Cherny Bock ::queue Homer Simpson-esque drooling noise::.) I also gave up excess sugar for roughly 3 weeks before I couldn't take it anymore and completely caved, scarfing down chocolate left and right. But after two weeks of no alcohol and very little sugar, I managed to magically lose 5 pounds, which then managed to magically reappear a week later without explanation or invitation. C'est la vie.

So, it goes without saying that in October I've completely thrown out the sugar embargo altogether, and with much detriment, because I seem to be overcompensating for the sugar that I didn't eat in September. In fact, I've had so much sugar this month that I'm actually starting to get a little nauseated at the thought of eating more of it. So I'm afraid it's probably time to start another sugar embargo, at least to clear my system of all the instant diabetes I've been feeding it this month, and then gradually allow a moderate amount of sugar back into my diet. I think quitting altogether is neither (a) possible, nor (b) wise, since I tend to overcompensate when I fail.

On the excercise front, besides hiking Mt. Olympus this month, which was totally one of the best experiences of my life, I've been taking a weekly power yoga class at the Fieldhouse. This is the first yoga class I've taken where I feel like I get a great aerobic workout in addition to the benefits to my flexibility, balance, and strength. I feel great after the hour-long class, but pretty much want to kill my instructor during the first half of class wherein he likes to kick our asses with a Plank to reverse push up to Upward Dog to Downward Dog routine that gets progressively faster during the first 5-10 minutes of class. Then he tortures us with Warrior 1, Reverse Warrior, Chair position, and all other manner of thigh busters, but strangely, the hardest thing for me is keeping my arms lifted in the air for various poses. I really have pathetic arm strength.

Which brings me to another activity I've done this month: dragging Sov, a former personal trainer, to the gym with me to teach me about lifting weights. We did various arm exercises, and I learned that I rather like doing squats and rather hate doing crunches. Sov didn't think I got a good enough work out, but my trembling arms told me otherwise, and my muscles have only just started feeling whole again after nearly a week since the weight training. His expertise is very valuable, though. He knows what your muscles are supposed to do, and teaches you to visualize using the muscles in their appropriate manner when working them. I plan to bring him back to the gym with me again shortly.

So that's the story for October. Here's hoping I can make it through November and the Thanksgiving holidays without completely busting my gut.





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3 comments:

Claire said...

I've tried Yoga. I think I lack the patience and dedication to form necessary to truly excel (which of course means I quit. I don't do stuff that doesn't result in a gold star on my paper. This is why I will be reincarnated instead of heading off to the Ninth Aztec Heaven or Robin Meade's House or wherever).

Now, Pilates, I'm actually sticking with. Since I feel like I've been mown down by a truck driven by someone who owes me a large amount of money, I'm guessing its working. Combined with the 10 miles a day on the bike, it is my hope that I will be in only slightly crappy shape by the time I come to Utah next year, and therefore will only have to be helped back down the mountain, rather than airlifted.

You're right about Sov, by the by. He knows that of which he speaks, fo sho.

Besides, don't you listen to the Processed Corn Syrup people in the commercials? Apparently, Refined sugar is "just fine in moderation!"

Because Americans are such excellent masters of moderation. This is the reason I immediately put all snacks into tiny bags when I buy them and freeze everything (note: not such a hot idea with ice cream). If it's not quick to eat, chances are I'll just say "Meh" and go do something non-self-destructive instead. I really wish someone had warned me that 75% of my time and energy would be spent on outwitting my own brain. Sigh.

Sra said...

Pilates is rough. But yogalates I can do.

It is a good idea to portion out your snacks from the moment you buy them. I have done this with success before, but it takes so much preparation that it's much easier not to do it.

Claire said...

I've tried Yoga. I think I lack the patience and dedication to form necessary to truly excel (which of course means I quit. I don't do stuff that doesn't result in a gold star on my paper. This is why I will be reincarnated instead of heading off to the Ninth Aztec Heaven or Robin Meade's House or wherever).

Now, Pilates, I'm actually sticking with. Since I feel like I've been mown down by a truck driven by someone who owes me a large amount of money, I'm guessing its working. Combined with the 10 miles a day on the bike, it is my hope that I will be in only slightly crappy shape by the time I come to Utah next year, and therefore will only have to be helped back down the mountain, rather than airlifted.

You're right about Sov, by the by. He knows that of which he speaks, fo sho.

Besides, don't you listen to the Processed Corn Syrup people in the commercials? Apparently, Refined sugar is "just fine in moderation!"

Because Americans are such excellent masters of moderation. This is the reason I immediately put all snacks into tiny bags when I buy them and freeze everything (note: not such a hot idea with ice cream). If it's not quick to eat, chances are I'll just say "Meh" and go do something non-self-destructive instead. I really wish someone had warned me that 75% of my time and energy would be spent on outwitting my own brain. Sigh.

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