Saturday, January 31, 2009

Creature of Habit

On Tuesday, Rocky went nuts-O as I pulled on my jeans to go to class. Kinda cute at first, and then I had a moment of unfortunate self-discovery: I have managed to classically condition my dog to recognize that pants = leaving; no pants = home.

Of course, this wasn't much of a surprise. I have known for a long time that as soon as I come through the door, I shed clothes with the intensity of a Husky's fur in June, with shoes and belt being the first to go. (When I worked in DC, it was pantyhose.) This is not to say that these items would be left by the front door. On the contrary, many mornings, then and now, have been spent trying to track down said items because the night before, I would come home, get caught up doing something, realize I'd be much more comfortable without the belt/pantyhose/socks/pants, remove the offending item(s) and leave them right where I took them off. Of course, when I needed to put them on again (usually as I was running late for work or school the next day), I could never remember where I left them and would spend a few frantic minutes scrambling around the house trying to locate them.

Last week, I reached a new low of losing my favorite bra for a couple days. It turned up in my workout room (which says a lot about how much time I spend in there). My scanner is in that room, and I took the thing off while I was scanning a chapter to post online for a class I teach. (Really, nothing sucks the joy out of scanning documents like a harness of female oppression.)

Further evidence of my mindlessness in the home was the time I lost the TV remote in the refrigerator for a day. I went to the fridge with the remote in one hand and opened the door with the other. Needing a free hand to grab the grub, I simply put the remote down on the shelf rather than letting go of the door.


Anyway, sometime between last fall and this month, my chronic belt-losing (usual suspect/locations: kitchen table, end table, computer room, master bathroom) evolved into pants-losing (usual locations: guest bathroom, under the coffee table). Since school started up again, my pants tend to be under the coffee table most.

Socks never used to present the same kind of problem because (a) I have lots of them, and (b) I tend to leave them in the exact same place: under my computer desk. When I run out of socks, I go fish them out from among the cords and wires and throw them in the wash. This, too has changed. I've begun finding them smashed between/under the couch cushions. Why? Because I sleep on the couch most nights and kick my socks off while snuggled under my blankie.

As if being a whirling dervish of clothes shedding weren't bad enough, Rocky's response to my putting on of pants alerted me to the concentration of shed clothing in and around the couch. This, coupled with the multi-day abandonment of my bra in the workout room is just a little too much for me to accept.

In my defense, in lieu of exercise and online activity, I have been super gung-ho about school for the first time since, well, undergrad (this is a HUGE deal).

Read: There is still a chance that I'm not a total loser, right? RIGHT?!?!

Monday, January 19, 2009

Oh Hip Hop Abs

I've been MIA because I was taking a class over winter session -- it was so awesome, I often stayed up until 4 and 5 in the morning because I didn't want to put the work down. I know! I know! This is good news because it renews my desire to be here and reminds me what this whole academic endeavor can and should be: liberating and life-enriching.

AM Yoga -- Standing poses.
Time: 20:00

I've decided to start my weekdays with yoga to wake up and get energized. I like it. Also, it was a little easier to sit with my knees folded today.

Hip Hop Abs -- Ab Sculpt 2
Time: 35:00

Okay, so I found this on the cheap online (5 bones, including shipping). I found it moved a little too slow for me, the music was lame, and I found Shawn T the instructor man neither motivating nor entertaining -- all of which is remedied with a touch of the mute button and my own tunes. It meant I wasn't totally in sync (*NSync?!) with the video, but I got to go at my own pace (faster), so I ultimately got a better workout. I primarily used the video for structure, though the floorwork did burn a little, and I did feel this in my upper back and thighs. I'd say this is probably a beginner-plus/intermediate level workout, and definitely not worth paying full price (I'm even a little annoyed at the couple bucks I paid for it.) Also, if you are at all funkily inclined you'll find this choreography not all that funky, not much of a challenge, and in some places awkwardly put together with transitions that do not necessarily flow. On the plus side, you don't have to waste a lot of time trying to learn the moves.

Distance: 2.4 miles
Time: 45:00

I've decided that my home treadmill will only be used for walking. I'll give running a try on the treadmill at the rec center tomorrow morning, and if that doesn't work (read: my knee puts up a fuss), I will hang up the running shoes in favor of non-impact activities like swimming and biking through the winter.

And now...

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Treadmill: 2; Endorphin Machine: 0

Mini Workout -- Running
Time: 7:00

Was in a time-crunch before class, but still wanted to get something in. (Note to self: staying up past 3am is not a good way to get a lot done in the morning.) On the plus side: my knee feels a *little* better.

8-Week Treadmill Plan: Day 2
Time: 30:00
Distance: 1.81 mi

Okay, this time it wasn't my will, but my knees. Eff this. I will try this at the rec center (I've been using my treadmill at home). First, I'll try the intervals, then straight running (but slower), and if it's still a crapfest, I'll just walk through the winter. So that's in limbo for now.

Endorphin Machine vs. Treadmill, Episode 1


AM Yoga -- Standing poses.
Time: 20:00

Might need to see a doc about my knee. It hurts to sit with it folded completely, both underneath me and indian-style. On the plus side, it worked wonders on my been-sleeping-on-the-couch-too-long back. I felt energized and ready to face my day! But not the treadmill (see below).

8 Weeks to 8:30-miles: Day One
Walk easy 30:00

I seriously need to find a way to change my attitude about the damn treadmill. I was supposed to do run/walk intervals yesterday and walk easy today. It pains my soul to run on the treadmill, even for a minute at a time! So I switched them.

Of course, this means I will have to face it today. With a vengeance or something. Oy.

Sunday, January 4, 2009

Ako Ay Pinay! Sige!

I've been struggling with my New Year's post and playlist for almost a week. This is also the second take on a post that went up then down again an hour later this morning. Both the mix and the post were turning into a jumble of random stuff I wanted to take on this year, so instead of trying to force them into a coherent whole, I will deal with them in separate posts this week.

My Big Deal Thing in 2009 is the ITU Subic Bay International Triathlon in the Philippines in May. I haven't been to the Philippines since winter 2003-2004, so it's time I go back. Even though my dad was here for much of the fall, it's been almost two years since I've seen my mama. And a triathlon (or two) in the mix? Super bonus!

This ramp gets you in/out of transition.

This first video is for my Mamar and my fellow Pinay-girl, Sunny. I have to admit, the mom at the beginning of this video is pretty close to my mom and aunties, yelling-wise. My mom never tried to feed my friends -- but my aunties and my grandma had that covered. Something tells me my mom would like "Pergie" too.

Of course, this also means it's time to freshen up the old iPod. As I was trying to put together a mix, I realized I was trying to address a few different tasks: finding mostly new (to me) tracks to get me charged up about training, racing in the PI, the ongoing peacetalks with my body (its ever-changing shape and abilities), and the year ahead.

For better or worse, I got my body from my mama. Seriously, some of my friends think our faces look alike, but she and I are shaped like the exact same pear. So these additions to the iPod are sort of an embrace of my mama, my body, and my "motherland." The last track is not supposed to turn a blind eye to the colonial history between the US and the PI, or even a suggestion that I might dominate anything when I race there -- just a nod to racing abroad and taking a tall, quenching drink of my heritage. Though it is probably a good cautionary reminder, nonetheless.

I admit, on that trip I will probably also be looking for a way to include a chapter in my dissertation about the women in the triathlon community in Southern Luzon in the Philippines. You know, so I can spend my dissertation year there. ;^)

English translation of the chorus from Bebot:
You're a Filipino, shout! C'mon!
If you're beautiful, shout! C'mon!
If your life is important, shout! C'mon!
Thanks for your support!

Isn't that a perfect way to end this first post for 2009?