Category Archives: Exercise

Throwback Thursday: Prose

Okay, here’s something from one of my creative writing: fiction classes at Davis. I have zero recollection of writing this, but it’s got my name on it (and it sure sounds like me). The prompt for this little homework blurb was:

A Stranger Comes to Town (April 2004)

“Guess where I am,” he said, and then, without waiting, “I’m coming to see you.”  She went through a quick spray of shock, excitement, happiness, and then suddenly shock again.  He lived an hour and a half away from her – two hours in heavy traffic – and while they had been talking over the phone for the entire summer, she didn’t feel the need to meet him in person.  He had offered to drive down to visit her several times, and each time she had mumbled stories of previous engagements and sworn vague promises.  “I got tired of waiting for you to make up your mind.  I’ll be there in an hour.”  The call ended and she was left holding the phone to her ear.  She was still holding it there when it rang again, no more than a minute later.  “I know what you’re thinking.”  He began talking before she could even say “hello.”  “You’re thinking that I don’t know where you live and so how can I find you?  You’re thinking you’re going to hide in a city of twenty thousand people.  I know you’re working tonight and there can’t be many Blockbusters in town.  I’ll see you soon.”  He hung up again without waiting for her to say anything.  She couldn’t help feeling that, despite their telephone relationship, he was really just a stranger coming to town.

I’m intrigued by this…and also by the reference to Blockbuster. LOL.

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Filed under Awesome, Beginnings, Exercise, Fiction, Humor, Writing

Advice From Old Guys

The other day B and I went for a walk on the levee. Since then the weather has taken a turn for the rainy, so I’m glad we spent the last week getting outside every day.

I’ve been sticking to pretty flat routes for walks – but I decided the other day that we were going to tackle the stairs at the end of the levee that head up the hill. I meant to count the stairs but I forgot, because I was too busy stopping three times to catch my breath. It’s from being out of shape practice…I don’t think I can blame the 10 pound baby strapped to the front of me.

Every time I stopped, I would turn around and look at the view, so just in case anyone was watching (and judging), perhaps they would think I just wanted to admire the ocean and the pier and the beach. On my last pause, I noticed a person starting up the stairs behind me, and I decided I was going to get to the top before them.

I got to the top and paused again (you know, for the view), and eventually the guy caught up to me. He was older and friendly, and asked me about the baby. I showed him off a little bit, and we talked about the guy’s son (who is 21 now) and how when he was a newborn, he would take his son for walks at Pleasanton Ridge all the time, and he thinks it helped turn his son into an athlete. Finally, he told me how cute B is, and good job for taking him out, and have a great day before the rain starts. A very pleasant interaction. I love when people are nice.

Although, I’ve gotten kind of paranoid, so I definitely stayed out in the open, away from the point, and where I could see other people.

levee 2

We made our way back down the hill and were heading back home, when another older guy, walking the opposite direction, said

“You look happy…do you have a baby in there??”

“Yeah,” I said.

“He’s so little!”

“Yeah, he’s still just a little guy.”

Then he came out with, “I hope you’re married.”

Um… “I am.”

“Good…I mean, I hope you’re happy.”

“I am.” Okay, thanks, bye.

I liked the first guy better.

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Filed under "Other people", Baby, Exercise, Nature, Nonfiction

Appreciating volunteers

I think I may have overdone it yesterday a little bit. I was part of this trio at work planning an appreciation party for all of our volunteers. Luckily it was a fun team of people because we spent a lot of time stuck together, and had to get creative several times.

Yesterday was the brunch, and I left home at 7:45am to pick up food and get to the venue. Then at 10:15 I went on another run to pick up the rest of the food, and all of the coffee. The rest of the time, when I wasn’t in the car, I was on my feet. I didn’t have to move or carry anything crazy, but even just standing around is kind of exhausting. The party was from 11:30-1:30, and after that it took us another hour to break everything down and pack everything back into our cars.

After I got home, Drew and I went to Ikea and bought two lamps and two shoe racks. Like we’re outfitting two identical houses. We also went by Old Navy where, walking past a clearance rack, I saw a pair of jeans sticking out with a tag on them that said $.97. These jeans just happened to also be my size (well, my pre-pregnancy size). I figured, this gives me something to shoot for, and they were less than a dollar. I mean, when does that ever happen?

(Last night after we got home, I tried on the jeans, against my better judgment…but they totally go on! I mean, aside from the whole buttoning-and-zipping thing. But that will come. I’m just happy that they almost fit!)

Anyway, after all the walking around yesterday, this morning when I stood up I was so sore from the waist down. As the day has gone on it’s gotten better, but I think I might have overdone it slightly yesterday. At least now that the party is behind us, I know that it’s pretty much just smooth sailing until you-know-what in a week and a half.

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Dear Diary Update 7/12

Big Brother Season 14 started tonight – one of the best summer traditions.

Drew just demonstrated his excellent planking (the exercise type) posture, while Erin counted slowly to 30. Meanwhile, I threw Hershey’s miniatures at him from across the room in an attempt to distract him or make him laugh enough that he fell. But he didn’t!

I found out today that I officially passed my glucose test, which is a 2-hour series of blood draws they do when you’re pregnant to test for gestational diabetes. No GD here – very happy!

Not much else to say about this evening. TGI(A)F!

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Filed under Awesome, Being a girl, Drew, Exercise, Food, Friends, Memoir, Nonfiction, Pregnancy, Sentiment, TV

A letter to High School Me

If I could go back in time and tell High School Me one thing…

www.westwood.k12.ma.us

…it would be to take advantage of Phys Ed.

I would rejoice if, at this point in my life, there was an hour of every weekday set aside for exercise, complete with someone shaking it up every few weeks and introducing a new unit (archery, then softball, then tennis, then weight lifting). This would happen at the same time every day, preferably in the morning before the rest of my classes– I mean, before work. A relative stranger would intimidate me through warm-ups of jumping jacks and crunches. I would have very little excuse or reason not to go, because at the end of the year I would get a grade, based not on my physical fitness, but on how hard I tried this year.

And in high school, we took all this for granted. We cheated our way through running the mile, and we opted to play badminton (or even ping pong!) instead of tennis because, let’s face it, a bunch of people trying not to move too much can play badminton pretty easily.

I mean, all the other mistakes I made and stupid things I did in those four years don’t really matter. You know, they shape the person you become, etc etc. I didn’t make any mistakes that ruined my life or anyone else’s (as far as I know). But it might have been really useful if someone had just enlightened me as to the fact that one day, I would pay a monthly gym membership for the chance to run on a treadmill and lift weights. And maybe that same person could point out to me the comparisons between a gym membership, and a Phys Ed class.

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Filed under Being a girl, Exercise, Memoir, Nonfiction, Self improvement

Arthritis Walk for the Cure

I tried my hardest to update last night, but my computer was completely uncooperative, and so here we are.

Yesterday I was just going to say a little bit about cravings/aversions, because I think it’s kind of interesting. I haven’t had a lot of cravings, per se…I don’t think it’s fair to blame pregnancy for wanting milkshakes every other day (I do not automatically give into that “craving”), or for my current phase of eating tortilla chips and salsa every chance I get (delicious!). I also have been enjoying drinking water a lot more than I used to…can’t complain about that.

What I’ve seen more of is food aversions – things that I used to love that I can’t stand anymore. I really liked beets, but now they sound repulsive (the mix of vegetable matter and sweetness? or something?). I’ve been avoiding a lot of vegetables, actually, including broccoli and squash, both of which I used to like. I like carrots and peas, which are both fairly sweet, and I wonder if that has something to do with it? I’ve also been avoiding eggs in all forms, and roasted garlic, which I used to eat with a fork. I’ve been trying to make up for the lack of vegetables with fruits, and sneak vegetables in wherever I can.

This morning Drew and I got up early and went up to Crissy Field in San Francisco for the annual Arthritis Walk. We were on an 8-person team headed up by our bff Erin (who works at the Arthritis Foundation), and I believe our team raised about $1200.

It was a totally beautiful day for walking around by the water, and before the walk started there was time to hang out, get some breakfast, and even check out the various entertainment…like this awesome marching band!

I’m not sure what you call a band that is just marching in place…but later they marched to start the actual walk.

At this point I stopped taking pictures, but Erin was enlisted by her work to run around and take photos of everything. It was a great way to start the morning!

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Filed under Beauty, Drew, Exercise, Friends

Chasing Cars

Yesterday, when I left for work, a man came out of an apartment opposite me and crossed to a car two spaces away from mine. I paid attention to him because I was mentally calculating a) whether I would be out of the space behind his car by the time he pulled out; and b) whether I might be able to get out of my parking spot before he got of his. But he was moving pretty quickly, and he jumped in his SUV and drove away.

As I got into my car, a woman ran (not jogged) from the same direction as he had, and chased after his car. She looked kind of angry. Not like, “Darling, you forgot the lunch I packed you!” angry, but more like, “I can’t believe you bailed in the middle of our argument and are now driving away” angry. She chased him through most of the parking lot and then gave up and went back inside.

Last night, when I got home, a car was leaving the parking lot. As I parked, I watched a stocky guy come around the corner and then chase after the car. Not in an angry way – he kind of had this look on his face like, “I look stupid, and I’m wearing pajamas and it’s wet out here.” He jogged after the car around the corner, and then I didn’t see him come back, so I’m hoping he caught up. I wonder if I should have done something to help him. I could have honked maybe?

Anyway. Two people chasing cars in a 12-hour time span. Is this a sign of something? Should I get a dog? I don’t know.

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Filed under "Other people", cars, Exercise, Sports

Setting a routine

We’ve been in our new place for a week now. I can now say comfortably that I do not think we made the worst mistake ever moving out of our apartment. (That was a very real fear a couple times there.)

We’ve now had time to settle in, figure out what stuff goes where, and get used to sleeping in a new bed. We’ve each decided which shower we prefer. We’ve cooked meals in the kitchen. This morning I hosted our book club here and we made lunch for our four-person book club. (It was awesome.) (We should entertain more.)

We lived in the other place for over 2 years. I had a routine down. I knew exactly what I did every morning, and while it was a lot of back and forth from the living room to the bedroom to the bathroom to the bedroom, I knew what each step was and there was a very precise reason I did everything in that order.

But I have to kind of start over here. None of my stuff is in the order it used to be in, for one thing. For another, the bathroom where I shower is not the bathroom where I keep the hair dryer and everything. So there’s a lot more back and forth, because after 4 work days I still haven’t quite figured out what my exact routine is. There’s still a lot of, “What am I missing here?” It takes me a little longer to get out the door in the morning. Which is fine, since my commute is about cut in half.

Drew’s commute is about doubled, which makes our commutes about the same length of time now. Which is nice.

The good thing about getting a chance to recreate your routine, is that it allows you to build in some good stuff. I am trying to build the following things into my routine:

  • Healthier eating, specifically snacking – we’ve purchased a lot of fruit in the last week, and I’m also depending a lot on those frozen vegetables that you steam right in the microwave
  • Cooking dinner – in the last few weeks at the old place, we basically gave up cooking anything besides chicken nuggets on a baking sheet
  • Going to the gym on the way home from work – theoretically I can avoid the worst of rush hour if I wait it out in a spin class
  • More walks – it’s so pretty here, and there are lots of places to explore before hitting the library on the way home.

I also want to try to be more of an adult in 2012: meaning, I want to fold my clothes as soon as they’re clean* and make the bed every day and wash dishes as soon as they’re dirty. Honestly, I have less hope for these resolutions than for the others.

It’s fun to remake yourself every January 1st. And I feel like this year we get an extra boost to help facilitate that!

*I’m rolling my eyes as I write this, since I know that every single clothing item I own is freshly laundered but stuffed into a laundry bag on the floor somewhere. I guess I know what I’m doing tonight.

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Filed under Beginnings, Being a girl, cars, Dreams, Drew, Exercise, Food, Home improvements, Memoir, Self improvement

I am the Harbor Master

It’s the weirdest thing – I was OBSESSED with Sarah and Vinnie (morning radio show) for a year and a half. I listened to all the podcasts, all four hours of the morning show, plus their 18-and-up “Secret Show” that you can only get through iTunes. That’s all I listened to, because I was constantly catching up on whatever I had missed. I listened in the car, at work, sometimes at home while doing dishes…

Then we got back from New York and I was like a week behind in podcasts, and I went to iTunes and went to download them…and I just stopped. So many hours! And suddenly it seemed kind of pointless – and it’s not like I was really gaining anything from this, except occasional knowledge of news stories. So I just didn’t download them.

Well, that’s not true. I thought to myself, I’ll just download the Secret Shows, and listen to those. But then I never put them on my iPod, and that was two weeks ago, and…?

I’ve been listening to the Sarah and Vinnie show in the car in the mornings, the live stuff – and then just listening to my iPod on shuffle the rest of the time.

It’s weird how cold turkey I went – I thought for sure there would be a gradual decline in my interest. But it went from completely ALL IN (and I’m talking, like – obsessed with listening, obsessed with the stories, obsessed with the people) to apathy. People who know how serious I was about my love for all things Sarah and Vinnie (mostly Sarah) will understand how weird this is.

But it’s okay! Because I have a new obsession: this iPhone game called Harbor Master.

This game freaking rocks. Basically, boats come into the screen and you direct them into the harbor where they drop off their cargo. Then you direct them out. And you can’t let them crash into other boats. It’s so awesome. It’s called a “chaos management” game. Sometimes you have 10 or more boats circling on your screen, and you have to figure out how to get them all where they need to be. Amazing!

We found the free version of this game (before I paid for the full version, with more maps) through another game I was obsessed with, called Temple Run. Temple Run is just a continuous chase game where you collect coins and jump over or duck under obstructions. It’s so fun, and I couldn’t stop playing it. Temple Run is the reason my phone kept dying in New York – even though I knew I wouldn’t have a charger for 8 more hours, I couldn’t stop playing. It’s ridiculous.

And that’s the story of how I exchanged one addiction for another one.

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Connecticut & New York City, October 2011

So, Drew and I are back from our East Coast extravaganza. We had a great time, and I’m so happy we went, but I was also totally ready to come home. Which is just about the perfect balance, I guess.

I’m going to start with a Dear Diary overview of the whole thing, then fill in specifics after. I just can’t bring myself to start one, long, DD post of the entire week.

So: last Tuesday night I flew out of SFO on the red-eye to JFK. I got in Wednesday morning, and dropped by my old work to say hi to the people I know who are still working there (there aren’t many left!).

Wednesday afternoon I took a Metro North train to Waterbury, CT, where Megan (the bride), Dawn (the maid of honor) and Toni (the mother of the groom) picked me (the matron of honor) up. We did wedding party things, checked into our hotel, and then Toni and Ken (the father of the groom) took us girls out for dinner.

On Thursday, we had Megan’s bachelorette party in NYC. That deserves, and will get, an entire post.

On Friday, Drew drove up from NYC, where he had arrived late the night before. That afternoon, I had to call in to work for 90 minutes for an interview that I was missing, being out of the office. Friday night – rehearsal and rehearsal dinner.

Saturday was the wedding! Yay for the happy couple!

On Sunday, Drew and I drove back to NYC. We saw an off-Broadway show at Roundabout called Sons of the Prophet, and hung out with Joe and his bf. We had dinner at 5 Napkin Burger, which is always good. We stayed at their Hell’s Kitchen apartment, a luxury and VERY convenient!, and watched Bridesmaids.

On Monday we did some touristy stuff – Wall Street and the protestors, walked along the Hudson, saw the bull at Bowling Green, etc. Then we took our luggage and checked into our Queens hotel, which was in the same neighborhood where we used to live. We had lunch with Jared, our old roommate, and saw our old apartment. That might have been the weirdest part of the whole trip for me. Then in the evening we went to see Sleep No More in the meatpacking district (?).

On Tuesday, we went into Chelsea and I had lunch with Sara, an old coworker who promises me she’s going to come visit San Francisco next summer. I saw the people I didn’t see in the office on my first pass. Then Drew and I did Union Square, The Strand (18 miles of books!), etc, and walked up 5th Avenue. We intended to walk all the way to Central Park (40ish blocks) but couldn’t handle it, so we took the train. We did more 5th Ave, then Rockefeller Center, back through Times Square to the Marquis Theatre to see Follies. Then a late dinner with Kaitlin and Joe on 9th Avenue (at Whym).

Today we checked out of the hotel and took the train to Penn Station, where we got chopped salads for lunch (I miss them so!) and then took the train to JFK, where we were hideously early for our flight. Drew read The Hunger Games, and I called in for a second interview at work. Then a 6 1/2 hour flight and we’re home!

Our apartment is bigger than I remember. And I missed it. It’s really nice to be back.

Okay. I promise to be more interesting in the details. A whirlwind week! But everything went as well as can be hoped, thank God.

I miss things about new York. Other things I don’t miss at all. Bad smells, crazy crowds, the humidity. I definitely am happy that my home is in California. But I hope we can visit NYC again soon!

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Filed under Awesome, Beginnings, Being a girl, Dreams, Drew, Exercise, Food, Friends, Love, Memoir, Nonfiction, Sentiment, Theatre