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.

#HIIT warm-up & #ashtanga #yoga

Fuck the fucking snow. Fuck this winter. Fuck corporations in general and especially fuck athletic corporations.


Obviously the max of 223 below is a Polar monitor glitch. I didn’t catch blip while working out, but I do believe the average because I was burning really high.


We’d decided to go to an early evening movie yesterday, not knowing this latest fucking storm would dump New England levels of snow. I was the one who suggested we get our grocery shopping done early – to toot my own horn, because if I don’t no one else will – and it was a damn good thing because it was already getting pretty hairy by the time we headed home. And judging by the stocks the food co-op had right before the last snow, there would’ve been very slim pickings by that fucking point.

The main point of my mentioning that is with the shopping and the movie I didn’t get a workout in yesterday. You can be sure that this morning I: meditated; did my mantra; did the banishing spell and then got my workout in. Hey, with this storm I lose the chance to make any pocket change this week. And I lost another week due to the fucking cold. I’ll have my endorphins, thank you.

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HIIT warm-up

1. Jugglers High Knees
2. Burpee
3. Jump Kick (right)
4. Jump Kick (left)
5. Russian Kicks
6. Squat Jump
7. Mountain Climber
8. Lunge Hop (right)
9. Lunge Hop (left)
10. High Knees Tap
11. Frogger
12. Heel Tap Squat Jump
13. 2 Plank Jack/s, 2 Knee In to Opp Arm
14. Alt Pistol Pop Up Note to self: pistols should go in the first third of a set this long!
15. Low Jack

Yoga

About 72min

  • Suryas & fundamentals
  • Marichy C & D
  • Second to Laghu Vajrasana, EPRK, Kapo B (x2?)
  • Urdhva D, 3 drop backs, 3 ticks Takes about 1hr to get to finishing with this format
  • Finishing

A moderate temperature is SUPPOSED to be 1 of the things Portland has going for it

Not this year! It’s a good thing I kept the 22 year old Grizzly. (Wish I had the money to get new faux fur put in but I don’t.) It’s a tights under jeans kind of day. I’m actually heading downtown to do some office cleaning. Moving from NYC to Portland is the same thing as moving from a “3rd world” country to the USA. Your previous credentials are rendered irrelevant. I’m a doctor in my country.

So I started the 2nd hermetics exercise. This time I’m going to keep a log & publish it as one entry when I’m done. Makes more sense. I tacked it onto a 22min sit. Normally I sit for 30min but I’ve gotta catch the last bus 51 of the morning at 9:08. If you wait longer than that, you’re fucked, in this zone.

Oh and my replacement 20lb dumbbell finally arrived! I’m not sure if it’s exactly the same weight as the old one, but I can alternate which hand holds which weight. At least now I don’t have to hurt my hands trying to hold two 10s at the same time, and I can up my load by 10lbs in many more moves. Gonna do a late afternoon routine today.

 

Advent and the New Moon

The Darkness

The murk of this part of the year in the Pacific Northwest is really something. If I could, I’d get away for a good two months of it, or at least I like to imagine that, currently looking at pictures of friends in places like Thailand or Bali. But then I wouldn’t want to leave Henry for that long. I’m spared from these kinds of tough decisions by a lack of funds, but now is the time in my life that I’m supposed to buckle down and focus art. Again. #fullcircle

Advent and the New Moon

You might as well make things ceremonial right? Charlie and I are gonna make an advent wreath on Sunday. I’d wanted to do that last year when I found out about the existence of the thing, at Trinity Episcopal. I’d passed by a couple times and was intrigued by the building, and then I found out they’ve got a fantastic pipe organ and choir. I love choral music and technically I’m Episcopalian, even if I’d never heard of advent. In those days I still thought I was going to do the full-time job and apartment thing too, and figured prayer couldn’t hurt, at least. I accidentally chose the 1st day of advent to attend my 1st (of 4 I think) service, and was intrigued by the pagan feel of it all. They had a wreath making class after and for $10 you can take it home with you, but ya $ so… We’re going to make one here. Plenty of trees outside. I’d still like to have a candle holder for it though. Looked at a bunch of them on Amazon.

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I particularly like this one for the price ($35) but by this point it’s too late to get it in time anyway. Maybe next year 🙂


The new moon is on Tuesday! I have to get up at like 4-fucking-am, in order to meditate and perform the banishing ritual before the first hour of Jupiter at 6:12. I just worked on my second draft of the oratory. I’ll be totally ready. I started way earlier and as an artist I have a definite edge in the imaginative.

Lastly I am REALLY STIFF & SORE for working out at night and doing the barest, minimal stretching after. I think I did a quick forward bend and that was it. Bad me. And I have to exercise today, still, in order to make my 5x tally for the week. I’ve gotta make sure to put in at least 30min yoga I’d say. Anyways it’s time to sit.

Core #HIIT with #jumprope & #swings + #yoga

Decided to write my own jumprope & core “recovery routine” because only I can know how little I wanted to actually work and what muscle groups I wanted to avoid taxing. The most slow & lazy jog jumprope was fine for today. It’s about having some daily discipline in my life and, I have to repeat it, a solid reason to take a shower.

I love Fit Body by Julia workouts, but I think this week was the first time I did two back to back, on consecutive days. I finally found something as intense as my old “advanced” Ashtanga workouts (full 3rd and part 4th) series, minus only the sheer terror and life or death focus required for the dreaded tick tocks.

I’d wanted to do more yoga, but I’m going to have to configure myself to fit just in the office & run the little space heater if I wanna do that. Temp is 64 degrees. Once you stop jumping you get cold!


Soundtrack: Rock Out Your Workout playlist on Amazon Prime. I won’t have it after February! Not unless something changes. It was nice and aggressive and I fucking cranked it.

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Core HIIT

  • (10/50) 2 rounds with 2min rest in between – 50min
  • 1st round – all jumprope
  • 2nd round – jumprope / swings – 35lbs This was the first time I ever did 6, 50-sec sets of swings at that high of a weight!
  1. Elevated feet, knee in to shoulder & then opp arm
  2. Straight abs
  3. Crunches, feet down
  4. Crunches, feet off floor
  5. Oblique crunches, one side / Side Plank Hip drops – 2nd round
  6. Oblique crunches other side / Side Plank Hip drops – 2nd round
  7. Reverse curl on bench, 3lbs
  8. Pendulum on floor, arms out to the side, 5lbs, alt sides
  9. Elevated side plank, bottom leg raise
  10. Other side
  11. Ustrasana
  12. Swimmers, Rumi style

Yoga

  • About 15min

 

The best feline sidekick, Bodyrock & rest days

Hmmm…. It’s such a cool, gray day after a long time of “relentless” (lol) sunshine. It’s been really nice actually, but an inward day is nice. The only thing is that Henry’s gotten used to over an hour outside. Yesterday he got more than two.

He was crazy frisky this morning while we were having coffee, running around and ambushing me regularly. Then C opened the door & Henry dashed out. He just went to the deck where he stopped and allowed me to scoop and scold. He looked smug, like he’d wanted to prove a point. (He also enjoys racing to the top of the stairs ahead of the humans.)

I definitely have to take him out later, especially as we’ve got a few days of rain forecast. There’s generally some time in the day to get out, but he’ll have less fun if everything’s wet.


I got all happy last night because I discovered that Lisa Marie IS putting out longer videos, on her own YouTube page, just like the old Real Time Challenge. Not sure why BodyRock has always had such clueless customer service. This has remained the same as they’ve grown. You never get the correct information! I was told by one that the only way to take part in the last Bootcamp was to purchase. This was after it’d already started & despite putting my name on the email list like 3x I’d never gotten a notice. Then I found a link to do a subscription trial and sampled 18 out of 19 workouts.

The last time I logged on a chat window popped up & was like “Let us know if you’ve got any questions!” Just for fun I asked if they were ever going to do longer real-time workouts again, like the old RTC. I went back to what I was doing and a few hours later I double checked and the agent never responded, not in three hours. It’s not like I’d asked for the nuclear launch codes!

Then last night I happen to see a suggested workout video in my YouTube and I go to Lisa’s page and find a bunch of current, longer real times! Since she’s the main star and her YouTube is obviously affiliated – the company name comes before hers on her own channel –  you think the people in charge of selling subscriptions and gear would be informed & pass this along, at least when asked. Nope! No matter. I always find the pertinent information myself.

I have a workout detailed out already but I might do it tomorrow & just sit today.

I like to change the rest / transition time to 15-seconds over 10, when working from a long list rather than following a video, however, so my workout will be slightly longer than the video. Gives me time to grab a sip, check the notes & get into place. This is especially good when working with different weights and a jump rope!

Jumprope #intervals & #ashtanga #yoga

Missed my workout yesterday! But at least I went on a lovely walk up to Council Crest Park with Charlie and Rocco, which was really nice & it’s pretty steep in some places, so at least it was an active sort of rest day. When we got home & started cooking. Eating some of my first batch of seitan made me as exhausted as Thanksgiving turkey! Promising! LOL. I’ve found that if I make a conscious effort to get good doses of plant protein, meat cravings go away.

Anyway the temps have dropped and I’m still really stiff through the twists, so I’m trying to keep things moving, by practicing them regularly to the best of my current ability (nothing to show off that’s for sure!) I took one of the new Bender fitness routines, modified and added on. I didn’t really work up a sweat but I got a good workout. I’d have liked to do some abs sets too, but I stopped so I’d get a 50/50 dose of exercise & yoga.

I definitely want to do this workout again.

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HIIT

Week 1, Day 4: Arms & Back Workout

  • (10/30) one interval of skipping before all #d exercises
  • Reps of all #d exercises.
  • Time = 41:33 Jotting notes as you complete each reps set takes a little extra time, but may be worth doing at least once in awhile.
  1. Pull-ups (with strap): reps = 20 (1-10, 11-16, 17-20)
  2. Chin-ups (with strap): reps = 20 (1-12, 13-20)
  3. Seated Curl-R, 15lbs: reps = 12 (1-9, 9-12)
  4. Seated Curl-L: reps = 12 (1-7, 8-12)
  5. Chest Press, arms together, 40lbs, reps = 20 (1-13, 14-20)
  6. Fly pulse, 30lbs reps = 20 reps, in 1 go
  7. Elevated plank, alt spider & knee straight in 20 reps, each side = 1 rep
  8. Overhead tricep, 20lbs = 20 reps (1-15, 16-20)
  9. Lawnmower-Right, = 20lbs  (1-14, 15-20)
  10. Lawnmower-Left
  11. Dips = 20 reps, in 1 go
  12. Reverse Plank Pushup or Reclined Tricep 20lbs = 20 reps straight thru, but only lowering to half way with a hold for most, b/c of the tendon clicking thing.
  13. Lateral Raise, 20lbs = 20lbs  (1-14, 15-20)
  14. Upright rows, 30lbs = 20lbs  (1-12, 13-20)

Asana

  • Suryas & fundamentals
  • no vinyasa twisting – SO TIGHT!
  • Paschimo & finishing thru sirsasana C
  • Eka pada sirsasana and about 10 breaths on the rack, quick savasana