Friday, January 29, 2010

This Week in Workout Review

My first water aerobics class was wonderful, and my second was even better!  Our instructor really keeps us moving for the entire 50 minutes of the class!  The second time, I didn't use the resistance water weights, since they caused me to flare this last Tuesday.  My strategy worked, and I wasn't limping around all day yesterday!

Today, I fought the temptation that is my new Wii game and went to the gym.  I started out with a 10 minute warm-up on the elliptical, and then went on to weight machines, isometrics and ball workouts.  Using the balance ball and a weighted medicine ball, I did 1 set of 20 squats, and a 2nd set of 10.  I then changed positions, and did one set of 20 crunches, and another set of 10.  I hit the leg press, and did one set of 20 at 90lbs and another set of 10 and 90lbs.  The butt maching (a highly technical term, I know ;-)) was next, one set of 10 at 35lbs, and another 10 at 25 lbs.  Leg extensions were 2 sets of 10 at around 30 lbs.  Then I did two sets of 20 isometric cruches, and two for-as-long-as-I-could-hold-it modified plank position holds.  THEN I went for 20 minutes on the exercise bike.  I left the gym feeling shaky but (unlike with the trainer session) NOT nauseous.  I consider that a success!

So, all in all, it was a good week.  I met my minimum goal of 3 gym session (the two water aerobics and today), and I feel more energetic already.  I can't wait to go again next week, and I can't wait to start seeing results here in a bit.  Weigh in will be tomorrow (hooray Saturday), but this one will only be weight and BMI.  I'm going to wait until Febuary 16 to get my body fat % measured again--I figure a month will give it sufficient time to truly respond to my new routine!

I'm so glad I have this blog organized so that I can record my workout information.  Yay accountability!

Celebrating a Quater of a Century

It's strange to think I've actually been alive a quater of a century, as of yesterday!  That's how my husband put it anyway lol.  That particular phrase made me think of how much I've already seen in my life.  Then I tried to project that over another two quarters, to age 75---and it blew my mind.  The only sure thing is that it will be an interesting ride, and that EVERYTHING will change lol. 

I had an awesome birthday though!  The kids at school all behaved fairly well, and three of my girls brought me presents.  One brought me a plush dog AND a card, one brought me dried seaweed (because we had talked about making sushi at one point), and one MADE me a card (she's an incredible artisit!).  It really was wonderful to know that I have touched their lives in such a positive way that they brought me birthday presents.  Then I came home and my amazing husband gave me his gift--the new Final Fantasy for the Wii!!!!  I know what I'll be doing this weekend ;-) lol.  Bryan then took me to Saltgrass for a wonderful dinner.  I tried out their "Texas Two Step" drink, and consequently crashed out on the couch when we got 8 o'clock.  At least I got a good night's rest!  And Bryan has also coordinated a group birthday dinner tomorrow night with some sort of fun shinanigans afterwards!  He really is just about the best man a girl could want.  Mom and Dad are going to come take us out for lunch tomorrow for my birthday, so that will be fun as well!

Today, several people wished me belated birthdays, and one student gave me a squished chocolate donut (which I suspect was originally for herself, but hey, it was a very sweet gesture) and another gave me a pack of Reeses Peanut Butter Cups (which I shared with Bryan...hey!  I'm trying to eat healthy stuff remember? lol).  As much as I sometimes complain and worry about my kids, there really are some good ones in this year's bunch.  After work, I wanted to rush home and play my video game, but right as I was getting packed up, one of my students from last year swung by.  He did not pass last year, and actually ended up at the Summit (alternative school) for the better part of this year, due to his addiction to pot and the fact that he got caught in possession of said drug on campus.  He needed some help with his Spanish work, so I walked him through answering questions in complete sentences---and boy was it wonderful to see the light go on!  Even more wonderfu than that, he told me he's clean and has been so for eight months.  He's finally getting his life together, and focusing on school.  I am so proud of him, and SO glad to hear that.  Kids don't always make that decision, and it's good to see one of them choose the right path.

Anyway, as I said, I WANTED to go home and play my video game, BUT I was a good girl and went to the gym instead.  I even got an impressed/encouraging nod from the trainer that gave me my first session.  After that, I came home, showered, and Bryan and I went to get sushi!  I also talked to Vic for a bit about wedding stuff. Now here I am, ready to enjoy the weekend!  And I'm going to start by spending some time with my hubby and pups.  Hope everyone has a great weekend!  

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Water Aerobis: Not Just for Old Folks!

First, to record my weigh-in from Saturday:
160 lbs (WHOOP!), BMI of 23.something (eh) and Body Fat 24% (definitely NOT whoop).  All in all, not a bad start, but definitely some numbers I want to go DOWN.  And so I start my workout commitment.

Whew, this is going to be a long journey.  But you know what?  It's the fun things that make it easier to continue--like water aerobics!!!  I had SO much fun at my first class last night!  I think the instructor enjoyed having me there too...or at least she enjoyed laughing every time I managed to dunk myself lol.  Apparently, my abs are not up to the "suspended" exercise sets, so I routinely went under only to come up spluttering as I tried to maintain the pace of the set WITHOUT inhaling water.  I really did have a blast though, and it was a fairly good workout!  For the entire fifty minute class, we didn't stop moving once.  We went from jogging in place doing underwater chest presses with water weights to tuck jumps to cross country skiing exercise to several others.  My favorite set was the obliques, where we went up to the pool wall and lifted both legs to the side, bending towards them.  I really could feel it

Today though there is a system of bad weather about to come through.  That plus my new activity level have sent me into a minor flare.  I was limping around again today, and my right wrist and elbow are pretty pissed off.  On the one hand, until today, I've had a month of relative freedom from pain.  I haven't been limping, and my wrist has been doing excellently.  This means that the Remicade dose I'm on is actually WORKING, thank God.  And I'm also very thankful for this last month.

On the other hand, it's always hard to be reminded that the illusion of normalcy brought on by functioning medications is just that--an illusion.  This disease will be with me for the rest of my life, which is why I will always refer to it as my "journey with RA" as opposed to my "battle" or "fight" or anything that implies combat or vanquishing.  This disease is something I have to live with, and respect, and hopefully prevent from damaging my joints to severely.  I'm skipping workout today, in the hopes that the limp will be gone tomorrow, and that I'll be ready for another water aerobics class tomorrow night!

Bring on the dunking!!!  And now to go spend time with my wonderful hubby, who is desiring my attention :-D!

Friday, January 22, 2010

Rheumatoid Arthritis and Resolve

And by "resolve" I don't mean the carpet cleaner :-P.

Up until this summer, I had been taking Enbrel to help control my RA.  At some point in June, I started to have bad flares again and it became clear to my rheumy (aka rheumatologist) and me that Enbrel was no longer cutting it.  We made the decision to start me on another, stronger biologic Remicade.  This one is administered once every two month via an IV infusion that lasts about 3 hours.  I was a little freaked out about starting Remicade because it had always been presented to me as the big boy on the block, so to speak.  I hadn't thought I would start on it until at least my 30s.  I've been reassured by several more biologics that have come out, so that when Remicade is no longer the drug for me I will still have options.  Anyway, I started Remicade in September, and was getting really frustrated when, as of the beginning of last month it really wasn't working.  But then whoohoo!  the December treatment actually has improved my condition considerably (after yet another up in the dose)!  I am no longer the "limpy teacher" at school!  I've even been off of my MTX dose for a full month now--due to a case of bronchitis, extended antibiotic treatment, and forgetting to fill my perscription--and I'm still doing better than ever!  I'll take my MTX dose tonight, but I'm hoping that when I go in for my February infusion, Dr. C will agree to back me off to a lower dose.  We'll see.

Even more exciting, because I finally am seeing marked improvement, I have started working out again--and not just on the Wii Fit!  I joined a gym last week--a LA Fitness to be precise--and I couldn't be happier with my choice!  I had a free trainer session, where the trainer took me around the lower body machines and showed my some isometric and balance ball/medicine ball combination exercises.  Of course, it wasn't until we started that I realized I haven't lifted weights in SEVEN YEARS, but overall I'm proud of how I did.  I could even walk fairly normally (for me) the next morning--and the soreness was mostly in my muscles instead of my joints!  That was Wednesday.  Yesterday I went and did an hour of aerobics--30 mins on the elliptical and 30 on the stationary bike.  It felt wonderful!  Today and this weekend I won't be going in, but on Monday I'll be going to my first water aerobics class!  Here's my general workout schedule plan:

Monday, water aerobics (1 hr)
Tuesday, 10 mins warmup 25-30 mins arm weights (alternating weeks pushing and pulling per the trainer's suggestion), 20 mins aerobic
Wednesday, water aerobics (1 hr)
Thursday, 10 mins warmup 25-30 mins lower body, 20 mins aerobic
 Some Saturdays, water aerobics (1 hr) but that depends on if my desire to sleep in wins out lol

I'm really excited about this!  I'm also going to keep track of my weight/BMI/body fat percentage here...I'll weigh in tomorrow morning and post that it a way to hold myself accountable AND be able to see (hopefully) progress!  Anyways, that's enough of this for now. Time to go relax with my hubby for a bit before bed!

A Whole New Year

I sure can't believe it's already 2010...and that I'm turning 25 next week!  And that in a little under 4 months, Bryan and I will have been married TWO YEARS!  That's just crazy!

What's also crazy is the amount of time it's been since I blogged! Well, I've decided to reformat my blog both in design and function.  In the process, though I'm not a very computer-savvy chica, I've even learned to code HTML, so I'm superproud of myself for that!  This part--the "Home" page--will be for life updates and general thoughts, rants and the like.  I'll continue tagging them as they apply to my other categories (which I've cleaned up, but I'm going to actually start sorting my posts.  Me organzing--shocking, I know!  But anyway, just to get caught up---

Here's the cliffnotes version of the last few months.  Bryan and I have finished furnishing the downstairs, even if the walls are still blank lol.  The Rooms-To-Go folks have lost us as customers due to the runaround about fixing our reclining loveseat.  By the time they agreed to replace it, it was discontinued.  But I LOVE my couch, and Bryan (though inclined to grumbling) was able to splice the problematic powercord, so we're keeping it!  Other than that, summer flew by, and then school came barreling in, as did Bryan's annual trip.  He was gone for almost a whole month this time, which sucked, BUT we were able to by a Harley Davidson Road King with the overtime!!!  It's so comfy to ride!  We took a ride with a couple-friend out to Shiner, Texas to see the brewery and that was a blast.

School's going well--lots of great kids and a few nuts and punks, but so far its been a great year.  Well, except for the kid who almost hit me, the one who brought a gun to school, and the parent who told me I was an "unfair teacher" who "kept her daughter from succeeding in my class" when the daughter had an 86.  Silly parents, thinking their home definitions of success determine my classroom procedures regarding retakes.  Sigh.  And two fellow teachers have left--one on to bigger and better, and one burnt herself out.

On the personal life side, the I started Remicade (a new biologic) in September, and after much tweaking, we've finally found a dose that seems to be working!  We rang in the New Year with Alicia and Bouncer, and went on a fantastic motorcycle ride to Shiner, TX with Ethan and Julie so the first part of this year has already been amazing!  As for the rest of this year, Bryan and I have planned a Spring Break trip to Costa Rica with Amber and Hunter, but most importantly my two best friends, Victoria and Bryanne-Michelle are both getting married this coming fall!  I'm the Matron of Honor in Vic's and a bridesmaid in Bryanne-Michelle's so its going to be a busy, incredibly fun year with all the planning for that!  And of course Mark and Alicia are getting married this Spring (Bryan's Best Man)...what a fantastic year for weddings!!!  For Christmas, Mom and Dad and little brother and one of his friends all came to our house Christmas Eve for Christmas morning.  It was so much fun!  Mom even called it the "new tradition" which is exciting.  Other than that, I've also joined a gym, and started regularly working out, and have realized I am INCREDIBLY out of shape, which is not surprising seeing as I haven't had a consistent workout routine that includes weight training in 7 years.  But I've really enjoyed the start I've made, and can't wait for my first water aerobics class this Monday!

So, in short, life is wonderful.  I'm really hoping that this year I will update this regularly, because I have found that I miss having this outlet.  Also, I hope I use this year to get myself in shape, and I'm hoping this blog will help to serve as a record/accountability measure.  Anyway, time to go figure out dinner with my wonderful husband!  Til next time.


Related Posts with Thumbnails