Sunday, July 27, 2008


Jason commented to me yesterday that I am looking really skinny on top. Which means what about the bottom exactly...? He sure does know how to put his foot in his mouth. But after letting him stammer around for a bit during which the words "upper arms" and "solid like tree trunks"* actually left his mouth, I told him I knew what he meant. For one, I have large upper arms. Most of the women in my family who also struggle with their weight have large upper arms. However, now they're still proportionately larger, but more curvy and toned. Rather than just solid columns of flabbiness.

Also, I lose weight on my upper body faster than my lower body. While I still have 20 pounds to lose, I feel like I'm almost done on the upper body and that 20 pounds is just hanging around my bum and thighs. Even my calves are more toned and have gone down about an inch each.

So despite his poor, poor choice of words, Jason was actually complimenting me and once I made my way through the mire of poor word choice, I felt complimented. Honestly, he tells me I'm pretty all the time and how proud he is of my exercising efforts, just sometimes he trips over his own words. I seem to remember hearing something somewhere about smart boys lacking social graces...

One thing I myself noticed yesterday as I was trying to stay cool in our house in a tank top and track shorts is that even though there is still a layer of cellulite on my thighs, when I walk, I can see my muscles clench and release with every step. I can't remember the last time my thighs looked so good and strong.

* As in, that's what they used to look like.

Saturday, July 26, 2008

I wasn't planning on swimming today, but when I woke up wide awake at 6:45 with pieces of law scrolling through my head, I figured I might as well get up and head to the pool and try to work off some of that stress energy. I wound up swimming for an hour and now I feel a little more calm as I plan out my day of studying.

I can't believe there are only 3 days left until the Bar. I know I don't know everything I need to know, but I also have to be realistic and realize I will never know everything I need to know. And everyone else is in the exact same boat, which is good.

I snuck some spinach into our smoothies this morning. Each smoothie had:
1/2 C. orange juice
1/2 C. unsweetened Almond Breeze
1/2 C. chunk pineapple
6 strawberries
1/4 C. plain yogurt
1 1/2 scoops protein powder
1/2 C. spinach
bunch of ice cubes

I've read about putting veggies into smoothies and thought I would give it a try. Other than turning the smoothies kind of a gross beige color, I couldn't even tell.

Off to study.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Abducted by the Bar

I'm still here, but the Bar has taken over my life. A week from today it will be done. That's kind of scary. I want to be done, but in no way do I really feel prepared. I'm trying to remember if when I took (and passed) the Bar 3 years ago I felt this unsure. I'm pretty sure I did.

My food plan is on the sidelines right now. I'm still eating healthy because that keeps my brain sharp and helps me stay focused. FYI, if you're in Providence, on Thayer Street and looking for quick, healthy fare, I highly recommend East Side Pockets. I've been lunching on the combo salad with chicken and falafel for the past few days. With that I get a big pile of lettuce, a boneless chicken breast, a couple falafel patties, tzatziki, hummus, tabbouli, hot peppers and feta. I love how Greek/Middle Eastern/Mediterranean food is so yummy yet still relatively good for you.

However, all my little measurements of so many veggies and fruits, so much fiber, so much blah blah blah has gone by the wayside as I just try to get food in me and make sure it's relatively decent. I bought a pile of berries on sale last week so I have a berry protein smoothie every morning. Then the salad lunch. Then I've sort of been alternating between store-bought sushi and already cooked baked chicken (with the skin peeled off) for dinners. Whole Foods multi-grain sushi is pretty awesome.

I'm also still swimming because that helps to keep the stress demons slightly at bay. I slept in this morning, but I went Monday and Tuesday and I'll go tomorrow, Friday and Saturday.

After the 2nd day of the Bar I plan to splurge on some ice cream from Cold Stone Creamery. I know, I know. I'm not supposed to use food as a reward. But I LOVE LOVE LOVE ice cream. And I haven't had real full-fat ice cream in a long time. I'm also getting a massage the next day, which will be heavenly.

Saturday, July 19, 2008

Lap Swimmer Anger

I swam for an hour today, which was great. Yesterday my arm was sore for part of the day, and then felt better that night. When I woke up this morning it was a bit sore, so I stretched and stretched and then made sure my pre-swim rinse-off shower* was warm and stretched the muscle under the water. Then I kicked through most of my workout. Sometimes I forget how hard kicking can be when you do 20 laps of kicking in a row. My legs were SORE afterward.

When I got home, I stretched a little more and iced it and so far, so good.

So, not to be all pool ragey, but the guy who got in the lane with me today was kind of annoying. Most of the people who swim at the Y are actually pretty decent swimmers and I generally don't mind sharing a lane at all because everyone knows what they are doing and there are no flailing arms and/or legs and excessive wake or splashing.** All in all it's pretty pleasant.

Today there was one person in every lane and I had put myself in the "Fast" lane because I was faster than everyone else there when I got in and the lane was open. A guy came out and headed straight for the "Fast" lane and got in with me. OK, no problem. Then he started swimming and, I'm just going to say it, he was a lot slower than me. Which is no problem either, I just passed him when I was swimming.

The annoying bit came when I was doing one of my long sets of kicking and every time I tried to pass him, he sped up. He sped up such that he was keeping pace with me and every time his hands hit the water, it would splash in my face. I don't know if it hurt his pride to get lapped by the girl who was just kicking or what, but it was annoying and I would wind up kicking half a lap with my head turned to the side. The good thing is, he couldn't keep up the pace and would eventually have to slow back down so I could pass him. But that whole speeding up thing happened at least four times while we were sharing a lane.


* Actually the Rhode Island Department of Health requires a WARM, NUDE, SOAP shower, as the signs in the locker room proclaim, but considering the majority of the people there don't even rinse off before they get in the pool, I figure my warm little rinse is plenty.

** Except for this one guy who must have heard at some point in his swimming past that when you do a flipturn you're supposed to make sure your calves slap the water AS HARD AS POSSIBLE so that you splash the people two lanes over. Yeah, someone needs to tell him that's really not necessary.

Thursday, July 17, 2008


Getting into the major stressful bar studying is making me crave all sorts of crap food. For instance, another blog I read just posted an ode to nachos - with pictures - and now I'm mulling over whether I should call Jason and ask him to stop by Gordito Burrito* on his way home from work.

* I love that name.


My right arm is out of commission again. I don't think this is necessarily swimming related, apparently I just have a gimpy arm.

This morning I woke up and stretched and my arm was kind of stiff and felt like it needed to pop. So I stretched and such until I heard a pop and it felt better. About a half hour later the muscle started aching and now it hurts to do things as intense as raising my arm an inch or trying to hold anything or petting the cat.

Last time it took WEEKS for my arm to feel better. I am so annoyed. I need to be swimming while I'm studying so that the stress doesn't eat me alive, but my arm has other ideas.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Like Lightning

I really am getting faster, it's not all in my head. This morning I did 32 laps (800 yards) in 13-13:30 minutes.

Yeah, I know, that's kind of a wide range. But I actually got stopped at lap 26. They made me change lanes to make room for the water aerobics class only 6 laps before I was done. The aerobics class is supposed to start at 8:30, but the start time is pretty arbitrary and usually starts anywhere from 8:45-9. This morning, they started on time, cutting my 800 short by a couple minutes.

For any of you watching the Olympic trials, I freely admit that my pace is a snail's pace compared to them, but I never claimed to be anything like an Olympic swimmer. I am a casual swimmer who is happy when I shave a few seconds off my times.

I used to swim an 800 almost every workout and time myself so it's a good gauge for where I am, speed-wise. To give you an idea, a couple of months ago I was swimming 800's in 14:00 or so. Today I was supposed to swim 3 500's (20 laps). I decided to time my first one and then I figured out how fast the 800 would have been if I kept up that pace and was kind of shocked, so I decided to swim an 800 just to see. When I got stopped with 6 laps to go, I felt fine and definitely could have kept up that pace for 6 more laps. The problem is, I was kind of flustered and didn't get a good look at the clock until a little bit after I stopped. I'm pretty sure I did 26 laps somewhere between 10:30 and 11 minutes

So when I got home I had my math geek husband figure out the seconds per lap and then tacked on a couple more minutes to account for the 6 laps I missed.

Friday I'm going to swim a 800 for real and get a real time.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Swimming Hard

First, hi to every who got here from the Livin' La Vida Low-Carb blog. My site meter stats were a lot higher today and now I know why.

After a slacker week last week, I'm back in the pool. My swimplan work outs have kind of been kicking my butt the last couple of days. It's not so much that the sets are difficult, it's that there are a lot of them in a row so by the end I am worn out.

Yesterday after warming up I did:
4 50's breathing on the wrong side (for me, the left side); R :15
4 50's breathing bilaterally (alternating sides) R :15
6 50's breathing normal, but progressive 1-3 and 4-6 (so 1 is slow, 2 is medium, 3 is sprint) R :20
Do above twice, cool down, pull tired body out of pool

My sprints came in at about 41 seconds, which is okay. I want to get down in the 30's.

Then today after warming up:
4 100's on 2:00
4 100's on 1:55
8 50's on 1:00

Like I said, it's not that the sets are hard, just that they just keep going with no reprieve.

This week is off to a good start with workouts both today and yesterday. However, I ate a Frosty today. See, today was my last day of my Bar prep class and there's a Wendy's close to the class. I don't know if there are any Wendy's around where I live at all. For a month and a half of classes I planned to treat myself to a Frosty on the last day of class. So I did. And now I can go another year, or however long it's been since I had one, before I have another one.

Friday, July 11, 2008

I Am Not A Morning Person

Lest you think I'm perfect little workout girl, I haven't been to the gym in 2 days. And I realized this morning AFTER I slept for another hour instead of going swimming that I probably won't be able to go tomorrow. We're going on a dinner cruise up in Boston tonight and won't get home until probably close to 1 so early morning swimming is out. The next lap swim time on Saturdays is at noon, but we're going to our friend's son's first birthday party. So 3 days in a row, no swimming.

I've been so tired the past couple mornings that I just couldn't get up. I tried to talk myself into going this morning, I really did. I reminded myself how I usually have the greatest workouts on the days when I truly and honestly don't feel like going. But I was having none of it and I reset my alarm ahead an hour and curled up next to Jason.

I swam twice this week and I guess I'll have to make do with that. Today is my last day of work until after the Bar and my last Bar class is Tuesday so I will be able to create a regimented schedule for myself, including working out every morning. I know as the Bar gets closer, I'm going to need that stress outlet.

Also on the agenda for alleviating stress: studying at the beach. A lady I work with told me about this great secluded beach just south of us where the parking is free. Perfect for studying!

Tuesday, July 08, 2008


I'm having a hard time throwing away my old swimsuit. Granted, it's currently in a heap on the floor, so it's not like I'm taking great care of it, I just haven't wanted to throw it away quite yet.

I actually bought the suit about 7 years ago. I ordered it online because I thought the pattern was cute and I wanted to start swimming again and needed a new suit. I ordered the size I wore when I finished college the year before. However, since then I had put on some weight and the suit didn't fit. Specifically, there wasn't enough fabric to cover my rapidly expanding bum. And the last thing you want when you're swimming is plumber's butt.

I kept it anyway, thinking since I was going to start swimming, I would shed that weight no problem. Instead I gained about 30 more pounds and have spent the last few years trying to get rid of all of that. It wasn't until earlier this year that I thought maybe the suit would actually fit. It did.

So I wore it and I wore it out. When you swim every day, or close to every day, the average Speedo only last a few months. Then the elastic in the fabric starts deteriorating, creating massive spots where the fabric is completely transparent that gradually expand until you might as well be naked. Not good in a public pool.

Last month I noticed a creeping see-through spot on my chest and one on my bum. So I ordered a new suit*. I've been wearing the new suit for a couple of weeks now, but I still have the old suit. I feel like I should frame it or something. I've packed and repacked that suit for many moves and kept it tucked away in the back of a dresser drawer, saving it for that day when it would finally fit. Maybe I should cut out a piece of fabric with the worn out Speedo logo and keep it tucked away to remind myself of what I have accomplished so far.

90 laps this morning.
Weight: 177.8

* This time I ordered one made of "Endurance" fabric for a few bucks more that's supposed to last longer. It seems sturdier, so hopefully it will.

Saturday, July 05, 2008


So I've never actually had a hangover, but I have a feeling that the way I feel today is a pretty good approximation. Yesterday there was no redeeming value to the food I consumed. Happy 4th of July!

Basically, I think my downfall was too many simple carbohydrates. Lots of sugar and white flour combined with zero fruits and vegetables - unless you count the piece of lettuce on my hamburger, which I don't. I woke up this morning with a headache and I felt completely wiped out.

I still made it to the pool and got in 100 laps, but they were kind of a lazy 100 as I willed my head not to fall off of my neck and sink to the bottom of the pool like it wanted to do. I have managed to do 4 Barbri Multistate practice sets (and am actually doing well enough to pass the Bar if they asked me those particular questions. Hooray!) But my head still hurts and I'm in a complete fog.

Jason is out with his sister running errands. I'm taking advantage of the down time by popping a couple Excedrin and laying down in my comfy bed, watching TV shows on my computer. When they get back we'll be going out to dinner tonight wherein I will be eating lean protein, fruits and vegetables and severely limiting the bread basket.

We played on our friends' Wii Fit again last night and now I really want one. So expensive, though! My thighs were actually sore this morning from the hula hooping. It's really a fun time and I think that if we had one, it would be a good way to get Jason up off the couch and active when we're home in the evenings. I won't be stopping my regular work outs, obviously, but I think the Wii Fit would be a good supplement for me.

Wednesday, July 02, 2008


So while it's good that I'm getting faster, it also means I have to swim more laps to get in as much time as I want. For instance, today I planned to swim for an hour, which usually equals 100 laps. Well, I finished 100 laps and still had 6 minutes left. Huh. So I did 10 more laps for 110 laps in 61 minutes.

Tuesday, July 01, 2008


Having a fat day.

That is all.