Posts Tagged ‘for fun’

Friday Fun! (In Which I Ramble About Health)

August 19, 2011 6 comments

Hello my lovely readers!  I hope you all had great weeks.  Today I’m going to be talking about a new-found passion of mine that I believe you all are aware of–health and fitness.

I joined the gym back in January for a lot of reasons, but predominantly because I had high blood pressure at age 24, and I was not ready to start being sick at such a young age.  I’ve made a lot of progress since then and gradually have come to love to see what my body can do.  Recently I set a goal for myself of joining a local MMA club by next January.  I love having a strong body, and frankly the stress-relief that comes in doing something so extremely physical is incredibly appealing to me.  Plus it’s good to have a goal that’s a *fitness* one and not a *weight* one.  I’ve never claimed my new passion for working out and old passion for healthy eating were about weight.  It’s all about having a healthy body to me.

In any case, I decided it was high time to challenge myself with something to the next level, so last Friday I went to my first ever kickboxing class at my gym.  Allow me to explain that my weak point is absolutely cardio fitness, so a 45 minute long cardio-intense class was going to be very challenging for me, and I knew it.  When I first joined the gym I could barely run for 10 minutes without collapsing over and heaving for breath.  So I knew this was going to be challenging.  I was determined to make it through it though.

Since this was a Friday evening class, it was fairly small.  There were about 7 of us ladies there.  And lo and behold the very first thing we had to do was jump rope for 2 minutes to “warm up.”  To me this was not a warm-up.  This was jumping in with both feet (haha, pun intended).  Anyway, we basically mixed jumping rope with kickboxing sequences and jumping jacks, and I thought I was doing fairly well until I glanced at the clock and saw only 15 minutes had gone by.  Egads.

Let me tell you.  Around the fourth time the lovely teacher told us to jump rope, I wanted to give up.  I was definitely the least cardio fit of everyone in the class, and part of me wondered why the hell I was doing this to myself.  And now I’m going to admit something very nerdy to you.  I thought of the zombie apocalypse.  Seriously.

What’s the first rule of the zombie apocalypse?  Cardio.  Was I going to let the zombies get me, a young strong woman?  Hell no.  So I picked up the jump-rope, and I continued on.  I continued on through the evil suicide and push-up drills too.  I fought my way through the whole class, and I have to tell you guys, it was crazy empowering.  There is no way in hell I could have done that class 6 months ago, and yes it was hard, but I did it.  I also went home and collapsed into bed at about 9pm on a Friday night in sheer exhaustion, but I did it.

My body is strong, and it is fit, and the more I challenge it the more it rises to the occasion.  Nothing feels so good as waking up and feeling alert and feeling my muscles in my belly and arms.  Nothing is as cool as knowing I can sprint 5 blocks to catch the bus no sweat.  The more my body can do the happier I am and the younger I feel.  I never want to fall into the trap of unhealthy living again.

I know some people really hate the saying “Nothing tastes as good as skinny feels,” and I agree.  But you know what is a much better and true saying?  “Nothing feels as good as healthy feels.”  And to the extent I have control over my health, I’m determined to do so.

I think that’s why I’m such a big advocate for a healthy America.  I want people to enjoy the happiness and thrill of having a healthy body that maybe they never had because of poverty or because of a lack of healthy education or what have you.  You don’t realize what you were missing until suddenly, almost overnight, you can survive a 45 minute kickboxing class and feel the adrenaline afterwards.

Happy weekends all!

Friday Fun! (On Thursday)

December 10, 2009 4 comments

You guys get Friday Fun a day early this week, since I’m taking a three day weekend to visit my family in Vermont–father, brother, nephew, sister-in-law, grandmother, aunt, and uncle.  I didn’t go up for Thanksgiving, since I had to work the day after, and Christmas is out of the question since that’s pretty much exactly when my very pregnant sister-in-law is due.  So, we decided to do a visit mid-December and a visit mid-January instead.  I like it.  It means I get to skip lots of the holiday traffic.

Last Saturday was the first time I’ve washed my laundry in machines since June.  Now, don’t think I’ve been wearing dirty clothes; I haven’t.  I don’t have a washer/dryer at my apartment, and the nearest laundromat is a solid 1.25 miles away, so I’ve been handwashing everything.  Yes, including towels.  Well a couple of weeks ago, my drying rack broke (we’re fairly certain the kitty broke it), and I hadn’t had time to pick up a new one, so my laundry pile was enormous.  Thus on Saturday I decided it was necessary to use machines if I was ever going to catch up, and guys can I just say, holy crap I’d forgotten what fabric softened clothes and towels feel like.  *sighs*  I don’t mind the upper body workout of handwashing, but my god I miss the fabric softener.

Also this weekend I officially became addicted to Lost.  I’d almost finished the first season, which I was enjoying but not loving.  But I decided to watch the season finale and start the second season anyway.  Omg, the second season.   I wound up having a mini-marathon, and I am now determined to catch up before the new season starts in February.  The only other shows I’ve ever enjoyed this much are Buffy and True Blood, and I have to say that I think True Blood comes slightly behind Lost.  I know; I can hear you gasping now.  I am so into it; I even do the yelling at the screen thing. (Please remember I’m only in the second season, so no spoilery comments puhleeze!)

I wrapped all the presents I’ve bought so far, and they are now camped out under the tree.  I’m almost completely done with my Chrismukkah shopping.  I need to pick up a couple of little things, a present for my grandmother, and something for the kitty (yes I buy my pets Chrismukkah presents).  Also a few presents I bought online haven’t arrived yet, and I need to bake cookies.  It all sounds so busy, but it’s all stuff I enjoy doing, so I don’t mind.

I had really meant to get a book review up this week for the next Dark Tower book, but I still have about 50 pages to go, so it looks like you’ll have to wait for that until next week.  It has been a very busy week with finals and life and all that, so I’m not too surprised I haven’t quite finished it.

Next week I’m giving my final presentation in class with my teammate, and then I’ll officially be on winter vacation!  I’m also having some friends over for a Chrismukkah gathering, and other holiday activities.  As long as I survive the visit home, it should be a pretty awesome week.

Reading Meme

September 16, 2009 5 comments

I’m not a huge meme person.  You won’t see this type of thing often on my blog, but seeing as how I frequently post book reviews and am a librarian,  I thought this one might be a fun way for ya’ll to get to know me.  Also it’s a nice light note before my much more serious post coming up at the end of the week.

Do you snack while you read? If so, favorite reading snack?
I don’t snack every time that I’m reading then I’d be like the fattest person on the planet.  I do read while eating dinner or breakfast sometimes.  If I do snack, it’s usually chips or crackers and cheese.

Do you tend to mark your books as you read, or does the idea of writing in books horrify you?
I love writing in my books!  I think it’s so cool to go back later and see what I was thinking.  However, I don’t get to do it much because most of the books I read are borrowed from a library or a friend.  If I bought every book I read I’d be broke.

How do you keep your place while reading a book? Bookmark? Dog-ears? Laying the book flat open?
I use a bookmark, usually the really cheap paper variety.  I like to see how long they last before falling completely apart.

Fiction, Non-fiction, or both?
Both!  I don’t understand not liking either genre.

Hard copy or audiobooks?
Hard copy.  I’m far too easily distracted for audiobooks.  I wind up not listening for five minutes and having no idea what’s going on.

Are you a person who tends to read to the end of chapters, or are you able to put a book down at any point?
I read whenever the opportunity strikes, so by necessity I put a book down at any point.  That doesn’t necessarily mean that I’m always happy about what point that is.  Nothing like hitting the climax right at the end of lunch break, for instance.

If you come across an unfamiliar word, do you stop to look it up right away?
No, you can usually figure it out by context.

What are you currently reading?
Excluding schoolwork:
The Tenant of Wildfell Hall by Anne Bronte
10 Dumbest Mistakes Smart People Make and How to Avoid Them by Arthur Freeman
The Creation of Psychopharmacology by David Healy
The Broken Mirror by Katharine Phillips

What is the last book you bought?
Italian Vegetarian Cooking by Jo Marcangelo (for $2.13 in a thrift store, yayyyy)

Are you the type of person that only reads one book at a time or can you read more than one at a time?
As is evident by the “currently reading” answer, I read multiple books at one time.  Always have. I get in different moods for different books.

Do you have a favorite time of day and/or place to read?
My favorite places to read are flopped out on a bed on my stomach, curled up in a chair with hot chocolate, or lying in the sun.

Do you prefer series books or stand alone books?
I have this philosophical preference for stand alone books, because I feel this pressure from series to finish them all. Yet I wind up reading a lot of series.  There’s some really good ones out there!

Is there a specific book or author that you find yourself recommending over and over?
The Earth’s Children series by Jean M. Auel. (see!)

How do you organize your books? (By genre, title, author’s last name, etc.?)
This is kind of embarrassing for a librarian, but I actually organize them based on how much I like them, so my favorites are on the best bookshelves in my bedroom, my least favorite on the crappier bookshelves in my living room.  Beyond that, I keep series together, but otherwise just organize based on size and where they fit.

*phew* Ok, there we go!  You now have some ideas as to my reading habits to keep in mind when reading my book reviews.  You now know there’s a good chance that book was read while eating crackers and cheese flopped on my bed. Or while sipping spiked hot chocolate. Either or. 😉