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Thursday, March 29, 2007

happy dance for Katy

Get over to Katy's blog straight away and join in the communal "WOOO HOOO!" as our favourite transplanted Texan is allowed to run again! Go Katy go!
Not much news here. Running - slow & short (but in a good way). Cycling - (clasps hand to forehead dramatically) oh, oh, how I miss my proper bike, my beloved Minerva - but the exercise bike gets me tres sweaty, and that has to be good, no? Remedial massage - ow f$%& ow f$%& ow f$%* ow f$%* ow f$%&! (but in a good way). Eating - all over the place, but maintaining somehow. Thesis - well....(short pause as LBTEPA curls into a ball and rocks back and forth). Social life - had lunch with the lovely and wise Kathryn to hand over my Run For the Kids t-shirt. I know she will do it proud, the lucky duck. She's been working hard for a good run - pop over to her blog and wish her luck for Sunday!
Today I am thankful for Michael Phelps' sublime swimming...28 strokes for 50m freestyle, swoon.... although I didn't realise he really has webbed feet!
I am also thankful for the constant entertainment provided by the outfit choices of the chickybabes at uni.
more anon,

Monday, March 26, 2007

How do you get a pikachu on a bus?

You Pokemon! I know, I know...I'm sooooo funny....
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Some dross from my tea-powered Brownian motion random-thought-popper-outer*.

Treadmill running is way harder than outdoor running and makes me want to puke, but having my mp3 player up loud enough to drown out the doof doof makes me feel hardcore.
You can lose all your condition in two weeks - NOT YOU JEANNE!!! You run marathons!!!You'll be fine!!! But me...sheesh...if I was a pokemon I'd be Jigglypuff.
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Thankyou from the bottom of my heart to J's employer for changing his roster so he starts at 09:00 instead of 07:00 and I can exercise at 06:15 not 05:15. 'Cause it is all about me.
Running short distances very slowly now means I will be able to run longer distances faster (hahahaha) later. Now a round of applause for Captain Obvious.
I will never never ever fail to stretch and warm up before a run ever again.
I am going to do things that make me impatient now so I can be one of those mad 90 year old bats who make people shake their heads and say, "she's doing what"?"
I never cried on a physio table until I had a remedial massage on Thursday.
I didn't know my response to excruciating pain was thinking "F#$%!" a lot of times.
Losing weight seems to be really hard and kind of depressing at the moment.
It worries me that I enjoy the windows media player display when I'm on my exercise bike too much.

Today I am thankful that my Mum, my sister and I are going to the swimming tonight!! Woo hoo!

more anon, amphibians

*It's not impossible that I read this at too impressionable an age.

Sunday, March 25, 2007

Let us draw a kindly veil

I drove to Bendigo through the darkness, singing along to happy upbeat songs. I was ready to throw myself onto the mosh pit of my blog friends' social effortlessness and be carried along by their sparkle and insouciance. I wrapped my fears in my new dress and my hot red knee-high boots that J gave me for my birthday and sashayed into town.
But then there was too much noise, too much smoke, too many people, just a bunch of stupid stuff - nothing at all to do with the fine women I had driven so far to catch up with - and little Mrs "I wish I went out more and had more friends" just panicked. Lame sooky la-la "I don't-like-this-I wanna-go-home". So I bailed out. Sheesh. What a (insert descriptor-of-lameness here).
I got a taxi to my car and slept for a couple of hours. Then I drove home, listening to the cricket. It was an exciting game.

Don't worry, my head is full of all the criticisms my friends will be too polite to make.
Let's never mention this again.

*MUCH LATER* I DON'T KNOW WHY BLOGGER TURNED OFF THE COMMENTS!! IT WASN'T ME!!

Friday, March 23, 2007

If I only had the nerve...

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*Please note: for full effect, the following should be read in a particularly nasal and whiny tone*

Life would be so much less tiring if I wasn't scared of things.
I'm scared to run on my poor sore feet and shins, even though the physio told me I can, and HAVE TO.
But I'm going to the gym to run on the treadmill in about 10 minutes when J gets home.
I'm scared to go to the Bloggers' sleepover in Bendigo tomorrow night - I don't know anyone! And what will I wear? You haven't seen these girls! They are gorgeous!
But it's all organised and J is razzing me for being a la-la so I have to go.
I'm scared about being six weeks behind in my thesis.
And the only thing I can do about that is dive into the library whenever I can and f#$%ing well get that f#$%er done. I WILL do well in spite of those useless bastards messing me around.
So of course there is a plan; it'd just be easier if I could get my shoulders down from my ears (*sigh*).
Today I am thankful for Noddie playing hide-and-seek with a little girl while I was queuing at Medicare, as until recently she would have told the little girl she didn't like her and to go away LOL.

More anon, yellow-brick road followers!

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

What I do in my spare time

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Context: I started the year thinking my thesis would be about the contribution of catastrophising thought patterns to the functionality of chronic pain sufferers. Then my supervisor offered me a project looking at the functional MRIs of the urge to cough. Cool! thought I, and started reading and writing and popping into the lab.
Cut to last Friday: my lab supervisor realised that I have a job and can’t actually devote every waking moment to the project. Comment: I’m a mature-age, part-time student, and a parent, and neither supervisor thought to ask how much time I have available?
Cut to this morning: after a complete WOFTAM* discussion during which what has been blatantly obvious since last week was thrashed to death for the sake of the lab supervisor’s feelings, I have no thesis topic. Comment: heck, it’s only six weeks into term. No worries! Hahahahaha!
~ short pause whilst LBTEPA regains a grip~
My uni supervisor and I meet tomorrow to work out a new project. It’s a Very Good Thing I am quite bright and extremely hard-working, isn’t it?

Insight: on the way to work from this meeting I was seized by the strong urge to self-medicate with a long black and some lemon-curd tart (mmmmm lemon curd tart….) But then I thought about the feeling I was trying to hide from. It wasn’t anger or despair or hopelessness, but sadness from the fact that I had to make a choice which precluded other choices.
You see, the cough project would have been the chance of a lifetime if I wanted to pursue a career in research. And as cool and fascinating and flattering to my self-esteem as that would be, I don’t. My long-term plan is to qualify as a clinical psychologist and move to the country. My priorities are my family, my studies, my health and my work, in that order. That’s how I organise my life. It would be wrong to spend every waking moment for a year in the lab (even if I wanted to) when Noddie is only three years old and J keeps getting promoted at work and needs my support. So it is the chance of a lifetime, but someone else’s lifetime. That kind of sadness – regret? - isn’t painful enough to need to be flattened with even the yummiest looking lemon-curd tart (mmmmm lemon curd tart...).
So I had a very nice soy latte instead, and bought a cool vintage shirt for $5 which has been complimented by every single person in our fashionista-laden department.

And tonight I will take my creaky shins and knees out for their first run in ten days. Scary, but I'm game.

More anon, strivers
*Waste of F#$%ing Time And Money

Sunday, March 18, 2007

Dude....

Goals for the day:
1. Get the washing in before it rained - 19 shirts and 23 pairs of undies (almost the Spousal Units's and my entire supply) usually summons a downpour. TICK!
2. Do something, ANYTHING toward my thesis (DON'T ask about the messing-with-my-head BS that is happening with THAT because I AM ATTRACTING HARMONY goddammit). TICK!
3. Do my stretches. TICK!
4. Put "3" instead of "2" in my AFD chart. So far so good :)
Late update: TICK!
Today I am happy about watching Finding Nemo with the Spousal Unit and Noddie. All together now..just keep swimming, swimming, swimming....
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Thursday, March 15, 2007

Now the plan is this...

Yes two posts in a day you lucky ducks, but I really cannot leave that load of 'please feel sorry for me' shite dangling out there. I actually just popped back to delete it for the second time but the lovely Jadey, Sue and Celeste had already been kind enough to comment so I couldn't wipe it out again!

So: I have a lot to do and am feeling overwhelmed, especially by the uni stuff. I also have to redraw my exercise goals and plans for the winter a tad, which I tend to make a big deal of - boohoohoo, eh?

Now the plan is this:
Stop whining!
Keep journalling my food. Whatever I shove into my gob gets written down. (a thought: savour and enjoy food rather than shoving it into my gob? Hmmm)
No more whingeing!
Do all my prescribed stretches, every day. Be thankful for them.
Lose the complaining!
Count my blessings and deliberately notice things to be happy about.
Enough of the bleating!
Weigh myself daily to keep an eye on things.
Banish my sooky la-la twin forever!
Do something off my must-do-or-the-soft-boiled-eggs-will-hit-the-fan list every day.
Give up grizzling!
Appreciate my friends.

What I might also do is come up with a list like Jadey's, of things I'd like to do!
Did I tell you my new hobby? If I see a woman whose outfit I really admire, I go up and tell her I think she looks great, smile, then walk away! It's fun :)

Today I am happy about having a coffee date with the Spousal Unit before he went to work.

More anon!

Crestfallen

It seems that in my enthusiasm I have overdone things to the extent that my feet, shins, achilles tendons and knees have banded together to plot a rebellion and Save The World. Luckily they Have Spoken in time to prevent serious damage.
My magic men (my podiatrist and my physio, who did you think I meant? Sheesh, you people...) have ordered complicated and painful stretching, icing (with frozen water, not the good kind on cake) and no running or cycling until next Wednesday. NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!
No triathlon for me next weekend. We will decide about the Run for the Kids next week. Medium-term prognosis: complete recovery. Long-term plan: gradually increase cycling kms over the winter.
Not helping is the fact that I have been feeling almost paralysed with apathy lately. Tax-type stuff needs doing, Uni stuff is screaming for attention and I will soon get into serious trouble if I don't do it, my bathroom and floors are putrid...and here I sit eating rice crackers, and blogging. Better than systematically scoffing all the carbs in the house like I did yesterday, I suppose.

More anon, searchers-for-inspiration.

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

I am not a crock, I am a human being

This week I am a crock, I tell you, a complete crock. My knees ache intermittently, the soles of my feet hurt almost all the time, my right arch hurts like #$%* when I run....I am seeing Chris the magician podiatrist on Thursday, and taking inspiration from Katy, Jeanne and Duane who are managing really serious injuries and medical conditions with good humour and self-control. They aren't sinking to the floor in a catastrophising heap of woe, or bleating mightily while considering self-medication by chardonnay. How do they do this? I have no idea. I just wanna be like them

(I don't know why YouTube wouldn't let me sign up and play this).

More anon, groovers

Saturday, March 10, 2007

Clunk!

I was driving the long straight road between Sale and Bairnsdale en route to my parents', just thinking about things, when the penny dropped so audibly I literally laughed out loud:
At my age and current fitness I cannot aggressively build up my running kms and my cycling base at the same time.
Thank goodness this notion penetrated my naive noggin before I bull-headed myself into a chronic injury.
A comment from the lovely Beck about my schedule collided in my mind with a line from John Bingham's Marathoning for Mortals - reaching for the stars is fine until your arms get tired. My exercise schedule at the moment is not right for me because it is not failure-proof. Every week I 'aim' for six sessions - and never get there. I never 'succeed'. When I write the bloody thing, that's just silly! Henceforth, five sessions are the ideal - then if I do get six in then I will be a f%&*ing superhero instead of just a legend LOL ROFL.
But....
With the acknowledgement that I am not immortal comes the necessity of choosing between sacrificing the winter to Minerva for the sake of a less-tragic bike leg in next summer's triathlons, or the original plan of three half-marathons....(and more bling)....hmmmmmmmmm....
No hurry to decide though. That's good.
The main thing is that I am sucking up the impatience and the frustration and being humble enough about my capabilities - while being fairly arrogant in my goals -to not injure myself. I am LBTEPA, hear me roar!
In other news, project "get away from The Number!" is going quite well. I am growing quite fond of my little yellow food notebook, symbolising as it does my aim of eating for fuel first, pleasure second - and numbness, never.
Don't ask about AFDs as I will have to lie and make excuses and you don't want that. Let's just talk about the lovely run around the river track I had this morning. It's so pretty, we must move here.
Now I am off to loll on the verandah and watch Noddie chase Mum's dogs around the yard.
More anon, groovers

Thursday, March 08, 2007

Captain Obvious

A quiz: should LBTEPA
a) send a huge "THANK YOU! THANK YOU! MWAH! MWAH!" to her splendid readers for their encouraging and inspiring comments?
b) get her thyroid medication prescription filled, and buy some more iron tablets?
c) recognise that her new cycling schedule makes her knees a bit tired?
d) talk to the ever-so-supportive Spousal Unit about scheduling, so running doesn't only fit in at half-past dark?
e) smack herself upside of the head for being so dim and whiny?
f) all of the above?

More anon, friends

Tuesday, March 06, 2007

CBB = NG

I just Can't Be Bothered running lately. This is Not Good.

Sunday, March 04, 2007

Sunday mornings

Sunday morning juggling starts on Saturday. The Spousal Unit gets home at about 7pm on Saturdays now (thanks so much for the new roster, J’s work!) so he’s tired at the end of his week and I’m tired from a very long day with Noddie. So after we have wrestled her into bed we like to sit down and have a bit of "adult time", including a bit of a treat meal, and almost inevitably a sherbet or several. If I plan a long run on Sundays I have to really hold back.
Noddie usually wakes up early on Sunday mornings and the Spousal Unit could do with a sleep-in, until 7.30am at least, so I can’t get out really early unless I manage to coax her back to sleep (unlikely). Then I must take into account the training I’ve done recently, my schedule – work, study and sport – for the coming week, and upcoming events, to decide what’s the optimal use of my available time. Mix in a few other priorities like family time, study load and then sprinkle with social commitments (thankfully, few) and “well-I-wouldn’t-mind-doings” - oh, and the weather…….I should be in Cirque d’Soleil. I have to say that I don't mind doing this. It's just complicated.
Minerva and I had a splendid ride this morning. My medium-term goal is to ride to Whittlesea (a small town about 26km away) and back, so today I headed out that way and turned around when I decided it was far enough, about 18km I think. It was nice to get waves and nods from the many other cyclists out on the road.
When I started the return journey I realised why it had been so smooth on the way out – the wind smacked me right in the face! Then something funny happened. With a click almost as audible as a gear change, my mind went into 'calm mode'. I was out there, I had to get home and I was going to. I could struggle and rail against it, or I could enjoy it. I used to have to deliberately take myself through that thought process, almost talk myself down from energy-sapping agitation, but today and last week in the swim it was an automatic process. I don’t know if this has occurred through practice, or confidence in my own abilites – but it’s worked! Such a handy skill!
BTW, as is my habit, I wanted to improve my cycling so went and bought a book about it. One single suggestion has made the purchase worthwhile. If you flatten out your back, i.e. try and push your spine toward the crossbar, your chest opens up and your shoulders relax so you can breathe better! Wow! Who knew?

More anon

Thursday, March 01, 2007

A line in the sand

I stepped on the scales the other day and found myself at a weight above THE NUMBER. The Number is The nothing-to-worry-about Number, The I’m-maintaining-ok Number, The no-need-to-do-anything-special-just-not-go-too-berserk- on-the-pizza-and-wine Number. Exceeding The Number blows a big loud alarm whistle – time for a lifestyle overhaul, since things are clearly more out of hand than can be remedied with a mere habit tweak.
This is a Good Thing*. It’s not self-flagellation or despair, although dismay did get a brief run. You know when you get that feeling that it’s the right time for a change, and you’re ready? That’s happening right now. I’ve had a great summer, an epic summer! Christmas, holidays, January, my birthday, Vanuatu – it’s all been brilliant! Uni starts today, which will Change Everything. I’m almost over my cold, and it's March so I am counting AFDs again. It’s 5 weeks until the Run For the Kids (eek! That soon?). Time to Get Organised. Time to, as is my wont, Make A Plan (just typing those words gets me all thrilled, what a sicko eh?)
Now the Plan is This:
Exercise: Plan, Do and Record. Take into account drop in fitness from the time off and the cold. Start slow, start small and stay frequent.
Food: have the Spousal Unit dish up my dinner into a smaller bowl or plate. I’ve already written “Portion Sizes” and “Dessert” on the splashback with whiteboard marker to remind me of my focus. Write It All Down. Boooooring but effective.
Drink: Count and record AFDs in the sidebar.
Thoughts: I was jolted from complacency not only by The Number, but also by a ghastly holiday snap in which I appear to be concealing a partially inflated flotation device under my clothing. I had stuck this photo on the fridge to remind myself not to graze. But then, S (fellow wage-slave) told me about a smash-hit 0prah type book called “The S3cret” which espouses the law of AttraXion, (I hope this misspelling will stop people googling me…); the idea is that you will get what you think about the most – hostility, prosperity, failure etc. I had a flick through the book, and although repelled and faintly nauseated by the airy-fairy, faux-spiritual, relentlessly simplistic-positive tone, there were a number of ways in which its arguments appealed to me.
I think the current victim-mentality is a plague on modern society. I consider the most significant breakthrough in psychology in the twentieth century to be learned optimism, and that positive psychology will be as significant in the twenty-first. In my own life, the habit of challenging negative thoughts and reframing them into positive interpretations has been immensely enriching; and I am constantly trying to be a better person by improving my strengths and virtues. Everyone should read the book Authentic Happiness. Really. It’s not about ‘success’ as such, but about ‘authenticity’ and building a lastingly better life. Its arguments are supported by one of my favourite things, empirical research. Mmmmmmmm empirical research....
I do believe that, to an extent, you get what you look for – compare your homecoming from work when you are tired and spoiling for a fight with your arrival when you are feeling happy and looking forward to time with your loved ones. Once you take responsibility for your own self, changing your own thoughts and behaviour is a skill that can be learned. Most bloggers I read are trying to do this, which is why I like and admire them so much!
So back to “The S3cret”- and the point....being inclined to have a bob each way, I am going to put up a photo of myself looking lean and athletic. I am practicing reframing negative food-related thoughts, which will be especially important to combat my tendency to comfort eat at uni. I am calm at uni....I eat because I'm hungry..... I will let you know how Project 5.30am goes though, not feeling so confident about that...
I have also set myself a fairly ambitious goal and reward – when (I just wrote ‘if’, then deleted it, must be consistent LOL) I reach 72kg (a 10% loss) I am going to buy Minerva a triple front ring. Oooooooh swooooooooooon. I’d better find a picture and stick that up too….
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More anon, Pollyannas!

* No Capital Letters Were Harmed by Their, Admittedly, Excessive Use During the Writing of This Post