Monday, November 22, 2010

Three things


Why am I walking like one of my patients? Because I started a new workout routine. I've been a runner since I was 18--with a few breaks for pregnancy and injury and impossible Buffalo weather. I've realized that running is now just a default thing that helps me maintain a certain level of cardiovascular fitness, but otherwise isn't doing much to help me look fabulous as I approach a certain age. (Maybe I already am a "certain age." No one ever defines what the certain age is.)

I don't watch The Biggest Loser and I had never heard of Jillian Michaels, but now I find myself in possession of her "30 Day Shred" workout. I am determined to do it for thirty days and see what happens to my body. Today is day three. I can't lift my arms above my head. I am reduced to shuffling rather than walking. When I am in a hurry, I look like an 80 year old woman with stress incontinence, searching for a bathroom at a shopping mall. Getting into and out of chairs is agony--and this is after the ibuprofen has taken effect. How I am supposed to get to work tomorrow is a mystery.

The workout is divided into three six-minute cycles which contain three minutes of strength training, two minutes of cardio, and one minute of abs. The cardio and abs are easy--it's my practice to go for my usual run as a "warm up" and then do this workout--but the strength training is KILLING me. Which shows I was correct in thinking that my usual routine favored cardio over strength.


Dave Matthews came to town this weekend. It was the check out girl at Foods of All Nations who informed me of Mr. Matthews holy presence. I remarked that I had better pay closer attention to the news and that at least now I knew why the traffic was so impossible. "Oh yes," she said. "Whenever people know he's here, they line up outside just to see him." She made it sound like Dave Matthews was actually in the store at that moment which made sense because if Dave Matthews was going to buy groceries in Charlottesville, he'd probably go to Foods of All Nations. I tried to remember if I'd seen any spectacular cars in the parking lot, and I wished I had smartened myself up a bit before leaving the house. Then again, on that day I was tracking down the ingredients for a particularly complicated curry and if Dave Matthews had given me a big kiss on the lips, I probably would have asked him if he knew where I could find tamarind paste. (Which I never found, by the way, and the curry was another FAIL on my extensive record of cooking disasters.)


I am reading The Road to Oxiana by Robery Byron. Travel diary-- classic upper-class Englishman bemused at non-English peoples in other countries, which in this case are Cyprus and the Middle East. He notes that carob is an important crop on Cyprus and then likens its flavor to a "glucose doormat." I can't tell you how many times I have tried to come up with a phrase that describes carob, and it turns out that "glucose doormat" is the very phrase I have been searching for! There was a time in my life, when I subscribed to a more natural life style than I do now, when I would actually buy carob and use it as a substitute for chocolate. It didn't take me too long to realize that this was a path to madness and I restored chocolate to its rightful place in the pantry.


  1. Try the Indian store on Rio Road for tamarind paste.

  2. Glucose doormat? Working out with Jillian? Such wonderful and busy times with you.

  3. Haha - glucose doormat. I need to remember that.

    I have no feelings about Dave Matthews.

    The incontinence shuffles hits a little too close to home. I have yet to incorporate strength training into my fitness routine, such as it is. I've been meaning to, but...yeah.