A tired, aggravated Monday morning, but I am very lucky #gratitude

This is what I was thinking very early this morning, listening to the torrential downpour while cuddling next to Sir Henry. We’re safe and warm and snuggly!, I cooed to him. Sure corporate America hates me; I’m an over 40, non nepotism-beneficiary, vagina owner. I’m still a lot luckier than many. I don’t forget to be grateful for the good stuff, which is quite often the simple stuff, the basic human needs and comforts. Do you have heat? hot water? a comfortable bed and warm blankets? healthy food to eat? If you have all of that, things aren’t so bad.

iPage sucks, and I’ve let as many people know about this today as possible

Then I got up and had to deal with my former website host, unexpectedly. That took quite awhile, and it was after another similar session just months ago. There are only two other reviews on Google and they’re both 1-star, lol. All told Charlie and I sat at the table 3½ hours. We also found out it’d have been better to transfer my line over earlier! My iPhone service ended today but I have to change my sim card and will have to wait to receive it and pray there are no technical difficulties. Like, I’m pretty sure AT&T wants to make you pay to get it changed, and I’m not at all handy with crap like this (though I did figure out how to change both the batteries in my Polar heart rate monitor recently).

I will also have to change my phone number and get a 503 area code, like I was saying on Facebook. This is because my AT&T account is already closed and I’d need a temporary activation to port out, which they’d like to charge a total of $70 in parting fees for. I’d been advised in 2015 by a 10-year PDX veteran that it’d be better to keep my 646, NYC area code as long as possible, saying locals are impressed by a New York association. I certainly have not found that to be the case. And my situation is such that it’s better to take the time to change my phone number on all my online accounts, however many times that comes up, over paying $70 and having to suffer through more phone calls through AT&T. Dealing with one cell phone provider at a time is enough! The last agent I talked to had the grace to sound embarrassed when she was forced to try to push television service on me at the end of the call. #asIF

Also this winter sure sucks weather wise

I wasn’t exaggerating earlier this winter. According to The Oregonian it was the coldest January since 1979. Plus we had snowpocalypse as well as other periods of snow induced house arrest. And now the torrential rains! Generally it hadn’t rained in extended periods before. You’d have breaks where the skies would brighten and you could get out and do stuff. This year it’s been a lot heavier and significantly longer, not Portland mist but more like gloomy, New England rain. I’ve really felt like I brought the weather with me! But of course that’s silly because if I did there wouldn’t have been a 2-year delay.

It’d have been really nice if at least we’d had half way decent weather for Sam’s visit. Walking around and hanging out in nature is really the best this area has to offer (and it’s Extreme Budget friendly), but there’s loads of things we haven’t done because it’s been so consistently rainy: Multnomah Falls, the Chinese Garden, walking along the waterfront, Tanner Springs Park, walking around the Pearl.

We did manage to get outside the portion of the one day it was good weather, Friday. Even the Japanese Garden was distinctly underwhelming though, with all the construction going on. The fish ponds were opaque swamps of pea soup too! I’m not kidding. I pointed to an indistinct, orange blob and said, That’s a really beautiful fish, if you could see it. They should really have a reduced admission for off season if it’s like that. Next time I’d just as soon walk on the trails around the zoo, in Forest Park, for free. I think it’s only worth admission starting mid March or so.

We’ve still had a really nice visit

We got in:

  1. Deschutes
  2. The Japanese Garden
  3. 23rd Ave
  4. Dick’s Kitchen & a good “home party”
  5. Short Cuts” at the art museum, a film festival, curated set of 6 animations. They made a point to not include any American films, so as to provide more of what might not otherwise get seen outside of animation competitions. It was excellent, I thought.
  6. Powell’s
  7. Portland City Grill for happy hour – they are so expensive otherwise! And anyway this time of year it’s dark later. Charlie was looking at the regular menu just for fun and announced that the shrimp cocktail appetizer is $32. We both laughed. We got there just a smidge early for the start of happy hour and were lucky to score a round table. I don’t know how anyone ever manages to get a booth. You probably need the right connections, lol.

The plan had been to meet around midday for Pittock Mansion, but we’re both tired for different reasons. Today will instead be lazy, inward and teetotaling kind. Our last stint of hanging out is probably tomorrow! It went by so fast… I’ve been amazed to have met two long-time blog friends for the first time ever in Portland. I’ve known both Sam and Ursula for about ten years, through the online Ashtanga world. Didn’t think people actually visit Portland unless they work for one of the maybe three, functioning corporations here, LOL. I’ve been especially happy about it because I’m so isolated here, normally.

I’m going to relax, read and then work out in the late afternoon. I’ve gotta work on a creative schedule for the end of the week. I need to get back to the concept work for my logo project and schedule some drawing, painting and illustration.

I’m lucky! I can relax on this gloomy day.

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Excellent Thanksgiving workout, #HIIT and #yoga

This morning, I was thankful for (in consecutive order following consciousness):

  1. Cats, specifically for Sir Henry
  2. The comfort of my mattress and the rain outside
  3. The fact that I stayed in yesterday
  4. Black coffee
  5. Improved internet
  6. Writing, creative imagination
  7. Meditation
  8. Exercise
  9. Finding BodyRock Lisa in 2014 and being introduced to the power of the jumprope and HIIT training
  10. And soon, I will be appreciative of the shower!

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BodyRock – Calorie Torch Leg Workout

  • Included the link to the YouTube even though Lisa seems to take her Live videos down after they’ve been up awhile. Did this one w/ list (15/50) for one long, 52min set. That’s a monster set for half jump rope while wearing an 8lb vest!
  1. RL Push-up, Lunge & Lift 30
  2. Repeat
  3. LL Push-up, Lunge & Lift
  4. Repeat
  5. RL Curtsy & tap up (w/out putting weight into foot, staying low), 35 !!
  6. Repeat
  7. LL Curtsy & tap up
  8. Repeat
  9. Goblet squat & lateral raise, 20
  10. Repeat
  11. RL lunge & press up, 20 Press up opp arm from front leg
  12. Repeat
  13. LL lunge & press up, 20
  14. Repeat
  15. Squat & press up, 40
  16. Repeat
  17. LL Single leg deadlift & SA curl w/ opp hand, 30
  18. Repeat
  19. LL Single leg deadlift & SA curl w/ opp hand
  20. Repeat
  21. Deadlift, 40
  22. Repeat
  23. Plie squat 4×4 (regular & lifting alt heels)
  24. Repeat

No jumprope

  • What a relief to take off the vest after that last set! Put on ankle weights @ the beginning of this so I wouldn’t have to stop before the thigh work in my added-on bit.
  • (10/50) 11min

 

  1. RL stationery, lunge 4×4 (regular & pulse low 30
  2. Other side
  3. Squat 4×4 (regular & pulse low) 40

Outer & Inner Thigh Add On, 2x
Considered adding a 3rd round cause it didn’t feel like I’d really worked the areas, but decided to move on to my stretch after 2 as planned.

  1. Leg lift RL
  2. LL
  3. Inner thigh RL
  4. LL

Yoga

I guess about 30/35min. I can’t figure it out! Foggy. It’s past 1pm and I haven’t eaten any solid food yet. Just had black coffee.

Victory #HIIT #reps & #yoga #workout

I missed both working out AND meditating yesterday. I’d been planning to get to both before all the drama. However I got back to both today & am very happy to report:

The easel has been successfully extracted from enemy territory!

I can’t believe she tried so hard to give the one thing away that I said was still important to me, but I shouldn’t be surprised. It’ll be waaaaaay less than the $600 last quoted by a UPS team that was being encouraged to take it off her hands. And now I can discard the check that’s on its way. I think I’ll burn it.

I’ve told my friend Cathy that assuming Charlie and I can figure out how to put it back together again (he’s pretty handy), the first piece created on it will be dedicated and on its way to her.

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Power Strength by Jamie B

Warmup: (10/30) x5 rounds jump rope. 3:20


Mix Circuits (perform 3 rounds on first set before moving on to second)
Round 1 —- 50:10
Round 2 —- 30:10
Round 3 —- 12 reps

Time = about 32 (forgot to time specifically)

Set 1: (set 13 24” elv) I’d maybe try 16″ if I had it. I’m not too good on vertical height with jumping! Even taking my 5’2″ stature into account.

(vest)
1. Regular DL 40
2. Box Jumps
3. Squat touching butt to bench Top DL 40
4. Squat Jumps
5. Wide Leg DL 40

Set 2: (no vest)
1. Push-up, Handstand, Plank
2. Drag Curls (bicep curl position, while curling arms up, keep weights close to body pulling elbows behind) 26lbs
3. Pull-ups Archer Push-up
4. Wide Hammer Curls 26lbs
5. Chin-ups Tricep Push-up


Combos (HIIT at 50:10 x3) 18:30min
with vest both sets

Set 1: (vest)
1. Alt Curtsey Lunge + OH Tricep Extension 20
2. Narrow Squat + Back Row 30
3. Alt Knee Lift + Lateral Raise 20

Set 2:
1. Chest Press + Leg Raise (raise legs at same time as chest press up) 30 Lowered from 40 cause I forgot to give myself 15sec for the change intervals! Also forgot to take vest off
2. Bicep Curl to Shoulder Press 30
3. alt Side Plank Row press + Leg Lift (side plank position, weight in hand, pull up to row while raising top leg) 10 per hand first 2 rounds, upped to 15 the 3rd. I figured out I can avoid hand pain by putting the supporting hand on the floor rather than staying on the dumbbell.


“Death by Dumbbells” (by Scott Herman Fitness)- HIIT at 30:20 4x
Time = 18:20
with vest for all but move 5

1. Dumbbell Squat 40
2. Dumbbell Renegade Row 30 Bent over, fast alt row
3. Dumbbell Burpee 20
4. Dumbbell alt T Push-Up (alt T raises with push-up in between) 20
5. Dumbbell star Toe Touch abs 10 alt sides


Burnout: AMRAP 5 reps per move 5 mins
Score: 2 rull rounds + 5 tricep push-ups

1. Tricep push-ups
2. Squat jumps
3. Wide Push-up, handstand, plank 
4. Box jumps

(Time – 1:28)


Yoga

About 15min

I’ve ALWAYS been a #renunciate by nature

Or as Greg, formerly known as Fucknut, once said to a friend while pointing at me, That one’s a Sadhu in training. He made a gesture like this

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and goes, She cares this much what people think. Him included!, As it later turned out. But I delete my digression. I’m no longer pissed about the ending.

I like to get really involved with things for awhile – passionate obsessions – and then (almost) totally abandon them: studies, artistic endeavors, NYC, ashtanga… I like to say I’m no longer this or that. I have a lot of practice in the fluidity of self identification, though I think sometimes I err too strongly in that direction…

Post meditation thoughts

Read a really long FB post by Matthew Sweeney this morning. I do regret I wasn’t ever able to participate in one of his month long intensives. He’s one of the few major, old school teachers I can ever read or watch without extreme eye roll. I was lucky enough to witness the end of his practice during my one and only, short month visit to Command Central. I ended up in the same spot in back of the room a few days in a row, starting my practice as M was finishing his, one or two rows behind me. Can’t remember which. I DO remember watching his tick tocks in awe while I was in my Suryas. I couldn’t fucking help it. He was right within driste.

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Out of my previous, extensive collection of yoga books, this is the single one I decided to keep. It’s really all I needed to take with me to the west coast. It’s the best reference tools there is on the vinyasa, as far as I’m concerned.

Some rare nostalgia

Back in the golden days when Christopher was teaching me 3rd series as fast as he could, and I got the first eleven poses my first day in, I’d be studying the vinyasa from this book in the evening. If I messed it up C would make me repeat! And I was still doing full 2nd for a bit, though I’m pretty sure he took off the seven headstands within a few days. He gave me all of the arm balances within the next three weeks, and then gave me the split he’d already worked out, before he left for an India trip. All of my friends got new split instructions too. He’d want talk to you seated on the floor, right before you were going to roll up your mat to go. He’d sit RIGHT in front of you & lock on the mind control stare while he told you what YOU WERE GOING TO BE DOING the next six weeks. Everyone’s split was completely unique and made sense per student. That was C!

My first 2nd/3rd split was a helluva intense practice! I’d do suryas and standing and second to Kapo. Then I’d skip to Karandavasana and after that straight into 3rd. That’s a steady crescendo right there. Boom-boom-boom all the way through the freaking arm balances.

Anyway, to wrap this up so I can get on with my day, I’ll say that while I’m definitely interested in working more yoga into my exercise, some legitimate practice rather than merely minimal closing stretches, I’m hugely wary of getting over attached again. I am proud of myself that I broke my addictive relationship with Ashtanga. The only way I could do it was to steadily extricate myself further and further from the scene of The Cult, of course. Happily I’m in no danger of temptation there because I’m couldn’t afford any involvement

I’ve been meditating daily for a little while now

I’m still glad I exposed myself to it so early on, so I know how to do it, what works best for me. It’s still the traditional, closed-eyes, seated style I learned 20 years ago. I can sit in padmasana. I learned how to achieve “enough” stillness and acceptance there. I do the jnana mudra, except if Henry’s around, feeling playful. Just as he hates yoga sculptures – having murdered the Patanjali I brought home from my first trip to Mysore and beheaded a yoga figurine my sister gave me for Christmas many years ago – the upturned palm just screams “Bite me! Kick me!” to his feline brain.

Anyway it’s just become something I don’t have to put in my iCal or write into a list. This isn’t to say I’ll continue such diligence if the sitting is no longer so deeply required, but it’s always there when I need it.

Oh and I still use my Holosync tracks! That has outlasted the ashtanga… I got into it right before I discovered Mysore style and I kept up with it, off and on, past The Cult.

Stretching and self regard

Not so the extreme (for me) flexibility that I’d temporarily acquired through years of fixated obsession with self validation through ashtanga yoga. Of course once I no longer needed the validation, the degrees of finesse with poses like vrischikasana and ganda bherundasana ceased to matter, along with any need to practice those poses at all. Back bending is important to some extent for sure, but those types of poses are not at all functional fitness. No one’s ever going to chin-stand themselves out of danger!

I didn’t do any stretching at all after yesterday’s workout. That’s going a bit too far in the other direction. I’ll take care of that today. I’m still soooooo tired though. The sinuses are almost clear, but I still have to carry around my snot rag all day. I still am taking daily advil for the sinus headaches. And it’s soooooo dark. I might make like a cat and go back to sleep for a little while.

Kickboxing and Strength by Jamie B #awesome and glorious, relaxing #yoga

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So awesome I’m going to put it in my iCal for next Saturday. I did it along w/ the video, no vest. The intervals are so complex I’d rather not bother finding an app that can program a whole set & then figuring out how to do so. Maybe next weekend I’ll wear my vest.

Kickboxing and Strength

Each set 2x: =7 mins 40 sec
Cardio: 30:30– (30secs slow controlled movements, 30sec fast) you will have 10 seconds then move onto strength
-Strength moves: 50:5, 50:5, 40:10

Set 1:
1. Kickboxing burpee: 2 punches in plank to front kicks
2. curl with alt stepping lunge, 20lbs
3. + Y-raise at standing position
4. Isolated: W-raise hold (halfway between Y-raise and low wide bicep curl) in reverse lunge hold (switch legs 2nd round)

SET 2:
1. Uppercut (single R, single L, double R, double L, single R…. etc)**
2. Sumo stomp (low sumo squat hold, raise one leg up with bent knee, stomp down, repeat on other side), single 20lb weight
3. + T arm twist (hold arms in T arm position with palms forward, stomp one foot while twisting arms to have palms facing posterior), 3lbs
4. Iso: Low sumo hold with posterior T arm hold, 3lbs

SET 3:
1. Front kick R, hook L, step R foot forward to do Front kick L, hook R, step right foot back to repeat, etc.**
2. Split Squat (R for entire first round, L for second), 30lbs
3. +Side upright row (pull weights up on side of body- movement similar to pulling up pants) ((Time with raising up))
4. Iso: Split squat hold with side upright row hold

SET 4:
1. Side jab R x2 (moving body laterally to right) + L cross punch, repeat on other side**
2. SL Deadlift with posterior leg planted. While in DL bent over position, do SL kickback with foot flexed (strong push with heel) (RL entire first round, L next)
3. + Bent over knee drop (split stance squat, lower down into knee drop
4. Iso: Hold in halfway up position from knee drop

SET 5: TRICEP KILLER
1. R jab L jab sprawl
2. Triceps Push-up on weights
3. + Pop up and reverse grip tricep pushdown (elbows bent, palms forward, press hands down to palms posterior) 2, 5lb weights
4. Iso: Chataranga hold These are KILLER! I had to pop up quickly 2x in each of these 40-second holds. It’s where they come in the set list, partly, and that amount of time seems looooong, lol.

SET 6:
1. Punch Downs (weights in fighter stance, punch down R arm to left foot, repeat on opposite side) 2, 5lb weights
2. Alt low squat toe touch (front- heel tap, side- toe tap, back- toe tap) 2, 5lb weights
3. + Hangman tricep extension (arms in lower scarecrow position, extend arms straight out, palms facing posterior) 2, 5lb weights
4. Iso: Low squat with tricep extension hold 2, 3lb weights

SET 7:
1. Side lunge to side kick R, side lunge to side kick L (kick with heel, foot flexed)**
2. Side step up with lateral leg raise (RL first round, L next) 2, 10lb weights
3. + High Front Bicep Curl (raise arms up straight, palms up, curl up toward either side of neck) 2, 5lb weights
4. Iso: Lateral leg raise hold with full curl hold 2, 5lb weights

** Cardio Burnout 50:10 2x
1. Speedbag lateral hopping back and forth This 1st move was really hard right after all the arm work! Next time I might either put this move last in the set and/or give myself a 2min break before starting the cardio burnout.
2. Low squat shuffle + crosses and side kick on either end
3. uppercut elbow roundhouse
4. rollback cross cross tuck jump

I might be tempted to do Jamie’s additional sets, if I was in the mood for a super long workout, but I can’t really understand the language without Julie’s demo, so I didn’t include them in the “for future consideration” notes. It’s not as if there’s a shortage of workouts on YouTube, particularly on my new favorite channel! #Fit Body by Julia

(1:14:37)


Yoga

About 30min easy, timed poses.

Early evening #ashtanga #yoga, #primary+

[EDIT UPDATE] I’d repeated an image & missed the burn!

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I practiced upstairs, in my little office again, to take advantage of the privacy and the heat. I almost didn’t make it to the mat! I’d wanted to do some HIIT before, but my feet and legs were so sore from yesterday! I’m fit but I’m adapted to other things besides six hours of repetitive motion. I don’t know how runners manage. Being a self-defined ashtangi was bad enough. Thank god I got out without mangling myself too badly.

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104! I consider this a restorative

So I did my usual except I only omitted 3 of the 4 poses of primary I usually skip, for being superfluous and not at all beneficial compared to the bits of 2nd I do. I did janu sirsasana C today, to help the feets.

I also did 3 ticks, for the first time in awhile, despite a shortage of space in the front-to-back, vertical direction. It felt good to stretch out my shoulders in that way. I should do 3 every time, really.