On the Schedule for the Spring Quarter

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I’ve been thinking about how I’m going to get stuff done during the Spring quarter. I had thought that since I have a later class on MWF that I would try to move the work outs to the morning and then do my stuff during the afternoon.

Then I thought, “why change what’s obviously working for you? That’s a recipe for failure.”

So since occasionally it’s still a bit chilly in the morning to go run, and now that it’s spring forward the mornings are much darker now and for longer, I don’t want to work out in the morning. At least I’ll acknowledge that. I don’t want to do it before class. I feel like I should, but I have a plan that worked for a month, successfully, so why change it before it needs to be changed?

What I’ve decided then is that that extra morning time I have now I will use that for my research that I need to get done. It may only equal 1.5-2 hours (depending on when I roll out of bed and get started) but consistency is better than bulk. And I’ll be up anyway, so rather than dicking around, then I should do something productive that I enjoy. And I like the quiet reading time I’ll have in the morning. I won’t get that in the afternoon. It makes more sense to take care of scholarship in the a.m. before the husband and the dogs get up.

Here’s the other part of my schedule that’s been working for me that allows me to get the work outs in in the afternoon. Starting about the second week of February last quarter, I started to read every thing for the lit class that week on Saturday morning while the husband slept. That was an amazing decision that one day that I did it, and I’m glad that I recognized how smoothly the week went as a result. Much better than getting up at 5 and using that hour to prep. 4-5 hours max on a Saturday morning and I’m set for the week! So I’ve been doing that every since. And for me, it WORKS! BEAUTIFULLY!! For many reasons:

  1. Since I’m starting the prep so early for the week, I’m not rushed.
  2. Since I’m not rushed, I’m enjoying what I’m reading.
  3. Since I’m enjoying what I’m reading, I’m doing a better job of prepping the readings (of course it helps that I’ve taught these things now a few times, but I’ve found that my notes from last quarter are abysmal or non-existent in many cases. Blerg).
  4. Since I’ve done good prep about which I feel good and confident, my weekend becomes worry free and that extra four-five hours of work on a Saturday morning makes the rest of the weekend so much better and open!
  5. Since everything is done on Saturday morning, my office hours open up for grading and student issues and what not.
  6. Since the office hours are open now for grading, that’s a whole helluva lot less grading that I have to be bothered with at home.
  7. Since I don’t have last minute prep and grading to do at home, I have my afternoons free to work out and cook dinner and hang with the hubby which makes me less stressed.

On one level it’s sad to think that Saturday a.m. is a “work day,” but man, the benefits are just amazing for me. And I need to add the freshman class’s readings into that prep, too, which might add another hour, but still, just the freedom of not having to think about it or worry about it for the weekend/week is what counts.

So, obviously today I won’t do the research because I just decided this this morning; however, beginning Wednesday I will. And then I’ll give you a progress report this weekend.

Happy Week Everyone!

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Well, after all my hemming and hawing and whining about my eating over Spring Break, I didn’t gain any weight. I didn’t lose any weight either, I don’t think. Unless I did and then gained it back through the course of this week, but I didn’t bring my scale to Home City, so I’m none the wiser and therefore, without documentation, it didn’t happen. All that can be confirmed is that I did not gain anything back when I did my weigh in yesterday.

When I did my measurements last week though, I had lost another 2.75 inches, so Score! there.

This week though was/is a different story. Still, no loss, but no gain, which really is a miracle here after this week. And I did not do the measurements. I’ll do them next week.

This past week though has been a rough one. I didn’t work out Monday because of the thing I haven’t told you about yet (forthcoming), and when that was done, we had to go right to the eye doctor’s office for our appointments. Tuesday was travel day–which took for.ev.er! We left later than I had wanted to. The wind was so horrifically bad that it tanked our gas mileage. I went from 32/mpg to 20 mpg! Because the car was working that hard against the wind. Which meant that we had to stop three times (on the way to Home City, I stopped once to fill up for gas a little bit more than halfway through the trip. That makes a HUGE difference). So we get home around 10. I’m exhausted and still not totally ready for classes to begin the next day which means I can’t really sleep in because I’ve got stuff to finish. I’m crabby when I get up because I didn’t sleep well either. I spend Wednesday exhausted to the max. I come home and crash on the couch for about four hours. Completely wiped out. And I still haven’t figured out the TR schedule of assignments yet! Up early Thursday morning to finish working because Wednesday’s office hours were also devoted to helping J with school and where to go, getting lunch, etc. Then we get some horrible news Thursday morning, so there was that. Finally Thursday afternoon I get to work out, but damn, it wipes me out. And then we went out with friends where I just drank water all night, which despite losing about 3 inches in my waist and about 2 in my belly, raises suspicions as to why there is no booze in front of me (I drank so much during spring break, I thought I was a frat boy in P.C.B.). Blurg. And I still don’t have the lecture I need to have for Friday done, nor have I prepped for the freshman class. Up early Friday morning to finish all of this and I’m late to my office hours. I hate rushing around and being unprepared my first week! It stresses me out! I get home Friday to work out and as I change to put on my work out clothes, I’m so exhausted by changing clothes that I put my p.j.s on instead and nap on the couch. And yesterday I was still feeling like crap.

Lots of the J’s family had been sick while we were there. I think I picked up a twinge of something, coupled with the horrible eating and the traveling and the drinking, and I’ve been out of whack for a week. First of all, I hate going more than a day without a work out. I need it for my mental as well as my physical health. Three days in a row nearly killed me. And then to miss Friday. Argh. But I’m at least thankful that whatever it is/was, it’s not hitting me full force. And my poor g’parents just called to tell us not to come over today because they’re sick again, too. They’ve been battling this stomach bug for nearly a month now. And the people who are getting sick are getting sick for extended periods of time. I’m trying really hard to balance things then so that I don’t get worn out and become susceptible and also maintain being able to work out. Though I’m sad we won’t get to see the g’parents, I’m glad to not have to travel today. I need to work out. It’s supposed to storm here all afternoon, and some are supposed to be bad, and I want neither to drive in it nor leave the dogs alone during a terrible, enduring storm, so it works out. I can work out, read a bit, and rest and read for tomorrow’s class. Again, I’m sad at not seeing the g’parents, but it is like a whole day has opened up for me.

I also made out a calendar/plan for the next two weeks of the work that I need to get done, since I already have drafts and papers coming in next week, I want to make sure that I am able to get done what needs to get done, and establish that early in the quarter so that I can continue to work out regularly and start incorporating some research in here, too. I’ve got a conference paper to research and write and an article due–both by the end of May.

So without further ado, I’m going to take out the mutts and then go to the grocery before the storm begins. Then the workout, then reading, then a nap most likely.

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I have a really cool thing to tell all of you, but I need to wait a couple of days to make it a little bit harder to triangulate my position and identity (although many of you who still read this know who I am).

But I can’t wait to tell you because it was really, really cool. And I was on the news for it. As was the husband. So stay tuned…

 

In other news (hahaha, pun intended sort of), there are few things more humbling and than seeing oneself on camera. Wow. I cried after I saw myself on t.v. I seriously did. I shed tears because I thought I had been making all this progress, that I looked good. That I had made some updates to my look, that my skin was starting to look better and that I had actually updated my haircut in a way that you know, took some years off. Not according to how I looked on t.v.! Last night was my first meltdown in a month. Wine and ice cream. I feel like crap this morning, and we have a 10 hour drive in front of us today. So why am I blogging and not packing? Because I feel gross this morning, and it’s taking me a while to get moving. I know this week will be spent trying to work off the damage I did Sunday and Monday night. Which has me a little bit down. And because we had a full day yesterday and I still had a syllabus to work on, I didn’t workout yesterday. And I won’t have the opportunity to today either. This is the first time in 6 weeks that I’ll have taken two days off in a row. It’s not the end of the world, but something about Home City just unravels me. But, I was much more successful this time around. If there is any weight gain from the vacay, I can’t tell because my clothes still fit. Historically, it’s been entirely possible for me to come to Home City with clothes that fit and leave a week later with clothes that are too tight. At least that didn’t happen this time.

Part of the problem was that it was COLD! Colder than the weather had predicted. And I did not bring running clothes for weather this cold, which means that I’ve had to wait until later in the day to work out, which while I have a nice schedule at BLT, here it was kind of a problem saving the workouts until the afternoon. Normally the cold wouldn’t bother me, but since everyone is getting sick and still sick, and I don’t want to get sick. Plus, it’s the recovery week for one of the programs that I’m doing, which is fine, and I need the rest, but I think I’ve got to keep doing the other program because I have found that I feel my best about myself when I do the second one with the running.

Here’s the other problem–I have been spending too much money the last couple of days because I have just been feeling so ugly! And it’s bad. I don’t have the money to spend on my looks. I mean, my looks need some updating. I’m in a rut. Totally. It’s bad. But I also need shoes–I just wore out my second pair of Dansko’s ever! Like I have worn through the seams! You know I got some use out of them!

But this is what happens when I come here. I don’t know why. It’s weird because I consider this place home, but I’ve been on shaky ground since having beers with my friend, the pixie in human form. I think once I get home and get back to my routine and have control over what’s being cooked, and getting back to my environment will help.Of course that doesn’t solve the immediate problem of my spending this past week, but I did get a new outfit for yesterday’s event which will double as the first day of class outfit. The biggest purchase was for the J–we finally went to the eye doctor and he got new glasses for the first time in 5 years! But of course we’re out of network, so we had to pay for those. And I’m out of contacts, so I got six months worth of them with the hopes that by the time I need to replace them the J will have some income. I couldn’t justify $200+ for a year when six months were $100 less and the J needs glasses.

Anyway, now I’m complaining. But thanks for listening. I’m off to pack now and get stuff cleaned up here so we can hit the road soon.

Spring Break Part II–Things Done and Not Done and the Quarter Ahead

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I had hopes for getting a class proposal done and getting an article written. Those things will just have to be worked out in the next couple of weeks.

I have one syllabus done. The one for the MWF lit class. What I need to work on today is that freshman comp syllabus. There’s not a whole lot I want to change from the fall, but there are a few things that I want to change. In part to make my life easier this quarter and in part to make the class better. It’s my weak point, and I don’t want to obsess over it too much, but I want it to be done and not be still working on it through the quarter like I did in the fall. But I think I might keep it mostly the same. We’ll see. It would be easier for me to keep it the same as I did in the fall because the prompts are already written. The readings already assigned. So, yeah, we’ll see.

And today’s workout. That will happen, too.

And I did apply for a summer ESL teaching job this week, too. That took more time to do than I had thought, but it’s done.

I think one of the things that I need to keep doing that I started to do in February, is to get the week’s readings done on Saturday mornings. Yeah, it’s a sort of crappy way to spend a Saturday morning; however, there are distinct advantages for me. Getting the reading and the prep done for the lit class on Saturday mornings opens up the entire week for me.

  1. It ensures that I have time during the week to get my workouts done.
  2. It means I’m not spending the mornings last minute prepping.
  3. It means that when the grading for the classes comes in, my office hours are free to grade so that I do less grading at home, and less grading on the weekend. I’d rather read on the weekends than grade.
  4. It also means, in theory, that I have the week open to work on the research and stuff that I want to work on.

This works most of the time for the lit class since most of the stuff on my syllabus is stuff that I’ve taught at least once. There may only be one or two new things on there, but it’s mostly stuff I’ve done. That makes it easier. And the power points are all done except the first one, so I’ll work on that Wednesday during my office hours.

The plan for the freshman class is to at least get Monday’s readings done Sunday morning. Since we go to the grandparents’ on most Sundays, the first priority is to make sure that the workouts happen before we go over there. No exceptions. And the freshman readings, for the most part, are short. Few of them are longer than 5 pages. And if I keep it close to the fall, then I’ll have half the prep done for that. And the plan for Monday’s office hours then are to read and prep for the remainder of the week for the freshman.

At least, that’s the basic plan. Until the grading comes in, I’ll be able to get some prep done during my office hours. But, I think I may use that time to do some of my work so that way I have the schedule and the pattern for the Saturday reading already in place. Because I tell you what. Doing that this last month really made an amazing difference in my stress level for the week, and I LOVED that it opened up my afternoons so that I had time to work out. It’s totally worth the sacrifice of working all of a Saturday morning if need be. Even though it means that Saturdays are usually eaten up by class prep and workouts, what I love about it is that rather than one day of lounging around, it opens up FIVE whole afternoons of being able to accomplish things other than course prep.

And I think I will continue to make weekly calendars with the to do list for the days on them mapped out for the whole week. That really worked, too. Even if I didn’t follow everything the way I had planned, I think the benefit was more in seeing everything that needed to be done for the week and seeing it broken up (rather than just one huge overwhelming to do list) worked for me.

Now I need to add in research to the equation and see how we do.

And I guess without further ado, while I wait for my running clothes to dry, I’m going work on the freshman syllabus.

Spring Break

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Well, my fears about how I was going to handle a week on vacay–the food/exercise “challenges” has been a relatively moot point. I feel bad because I’ve had to avoid certain outings/phone calls making time to see everyone here because most of the people I know in Home City hate to cook and prefer restaurant food to home cooking, so that’s been tough. Plus I spent a bunch of money at the grocery so I’d have food here and not eat out, and thank goodness we have a cooler here because some of that food is coming back. I forgot the husband was going to be gone for four days and that the roommate doesn’t like homecooking unless he’s cooking eggs, beans, or rice or pork–I’ll write a whole other post on how the Roommate and I go back and forth on nutrition. It’s so frustrating sometimes. Anyway, the one thing I’ve consumed a lot more of this week than I have in a while is alcohol. Good lord. Five drinks Wednesday night. Some beer Friday night. Two and a half beers and one glass of wine last night. This is the problem with Home City. Something about Home City makes me want to just indulge in alcohol. Perhaps it’s because when we’re here it’s “vacation” and I associate “vacation” with alcohol and fun. Which is how I get into trouble with maintaining weight loss/health when I’m here.

It’s not so much the alcohol consumption per se, not the calories that does me in. It’s how I feel the next day. I mean, obviously that’s a big “DUH!” but I’m not talking about the hangover issue. As my metabolism has increased, the hangover has decreased, so I mean that’s a good sign as far as my metabolism goes and increase in health and fitness and stuff. And I know, intellectually, that indeed alcohol is a depressant. And I know from all my elementary school drug awareness classes, my science classes, and my undergraduate psychology classes the effects of depressants on the brain and body, etc. Maybe it’s from the working out and eating right that I have more of an awareness of what goes on with my body, but I’ve begun to notice how so very sad I am the day after drinking. And when I’m sad, I don’t want to work out, and that is the biggest issue. But I get really truly depressed the day after. My confidence is shot. My self-esteem plummets because I feel so down. I always thought that was part of the hangover–a general blahness–but maybe because I have more awareness of myself, my body, my mental and physical health that I really notice and am paying attention to what is going on with my body and how I feel.

So today I feel utterly down. I want to crawl into bed, not work out, order a pizza, go to McDonald’s, and not do any work at all. I don’t want to be social. I don’t want to do laundry. In short, I don’t want to do jack shit. But I won’t.

I had a good week last week. The numbers on the tape show it, even though right now I feel significantly less sassy than I did three days ago. And I think part of that is the person I went out with last night–she’s seriously like the epitome of a pixie in human form. Petite, adorably short hair, bright bright eyes–like seriously, that pick up line “where you parents thieves? Because someone stole the stars and put them in yours eyes” totally describes her eyes. And she’s super confident in herself with this quiet shyness. Next to her, I always feel like an oaf! Like I feel like when I stand next to her I look like Marla from A League of Their Own. Seriously. So there’s a lot of that going on, too. I feel very uncomfortable in my skin next to her. And she’s never done anything to make me feel that way. It’s just hard to be me around all that indie cuteness! Anyway, so I’m on shaky ground today as it is. And I think what it does is just highlight how much more work I have to do on myself.

I will say this though–because I recognize what’s going on with my body and my mind, I still force myself to work out. It might take hours for me to muster the strength to do so, but I know I’ll feel worse if I don’t, and I know that the results of this week will show up next week, and I don’t want vacation to sabotage the work that I’ve done, the good feelings that I’ve had. I mean, I lost another almost 3 inches again this week! Quarter inch here, quarter inch there really adds up. My hips and thighs still have a ways to go, but still. Baby steps.

So today I’m just sort of blah. Maybe too it’s because I know break will be over soon–we leave on Tuesday–and I’ve not gotten the work done that I needed to. Naturally, who ever does, and when do I ever. But on the positive side, that work that I wanted to get done has been replaced with relaxation time. I’ve taken a few mid-day naps. I’ve gone to bed a little bit earlier so I can lay in bed and read. I’ve gone shopping. I’ve spent time with friends. I have yet to get my mani/pedi, but I think I’ll be able to do that this afternoon if I get my stuff together soon enough. There’s something to be said for that–the relaxing. I feel like I’ve been working almost non-stop since the last week of January, so the naps have been nice. My body’s telling me to slow down and smell the roses a bit. And I need it I guess. I won’t get another break until Easter break, so I should enjoy this now while I can.

 

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Turns out the roommate here in Home City got internet so he could game! Huzzah! That means I have internet here! Which seriously made my day when I had to submit grades because rather than having to make a special trip to go somewhere to find internetz, I just got up, spend about 20 minutes figuring out the last of the grades and boom, submitted them in my pjs! Yay! And it means I was able to get the billz paid too without having to go do that in a public place.

I’ve gotten two days of basic relaxation so far thanks to my being able to get 90% of the grading done and submitted before leaving. That made a huge difference, otherwise I would have spent Wednesday and yesterday grading furiously and it would have cut into my work out time and I’d be miserable right about now. We’ve already had lunch with one set of parents, we had our fancy dinner at our favorite restaurant, which we really can’t afford, but it was so worth it. They had karaoke! We had an amazing time. Oh my god. It was so what we needed, and our friend who joined us, I’m sure it was what he needed, too. Yesterday I got my hair done for the first time in 3 months. I don’t look like the Scarecrow from the Wizard of Oz anymore. She had to have chopped off about 1.5-2 inches of hair. Lots of the blonde is gone, and I have these hot red streaks underneath. It’s soft again and I look fairly polished rather than scraggly. It’s weird though to see my hair close to my natural color when I look in the mirror, and it’s sad because Wednesday I had, for the first time, gotten my hair to look nicer than it had in months, but it took so much product and it felt like straw, so I’m glad for a different look now. Plus, I wanted something a little different since I’m losing weight/inches and feeling better about myself. Plus, I’ve had the same look for about 15 months now. That’s about my limit. Once it stops working for me, it’s time for a change. Anyway, I feel better.

So today I need to work on a summer teaching fellowship, which I don’t think I have a snowball’s chance in hell of getting, but I’m going to apply anyway. I need to work on my syllabi. And I do need to work on that article that I wanted to write over break, but that might get put on the back burner, and it might be something that I have to crank out during the first week of classes. Getting the syllabi and some class prep done are first priority at this point, after the summer teaching app that’s due today.

Today, I also need to buy some shirts, shampoo, and new lipstick and face powder. Yes, I need to do that here because I can’t get it in Big Little Town, and it will help avoid paying shipping. I could drive an hour to get to where I need to in BLT, but still, it’s right here, it’s stuff I need now, so why not? May as well do it here.

I guess since it’s supposed to be cold and rainy with flurries this morning, I’m going to work on the summer teaching app and then go run my errands in the muck so I can run in the sunshine later. I don’t want to run in the cold. Even though I have the stuff for it, I’d rather not. Especially since a handful of my colleagues are sick and on antibiotics, so I don’t want to do anything that’s going to weaken the immune system and make me susceptible. I can bundle up much more effectively for errand running/shopping than I can for running. And I’d rather run in the sun than the clouds anyway.

Have a great weekend all!

 

Progess Report Part II–Health/Fitness

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Let’s just say that I’m feeling good. I’m feeling healthy. I’m feeling strong. I have energy.

The diet still needs improvement, but it’s better than it was in January, which was better than it was in December, so there’s forward progress.

This week traveling and being in Home City will be a challenge although it shouldn’t be. The only problem will be the J’s family wanting to eat out and cook for us, and these are not people who are concerned with healthy eating, so I have to watch it and not get sucked into glutton fests. However, I have done well in social situations thus far, so I guess rather than look at it as a challenge, I really should shift my mindset and just look at it as just another week. Plus, I’m bringing my workout equipment with me (yay for driving), so yeah, I shouldn’t look at this week as being any different than any other week.

Peace out! Have a great Monday and great week y’all!