Tuesday, March 31, 2009


Top 10 things I've given up as a result of BTWG...and am pleased to let go!

1) I gladly give up my morning routine of struggling to put on pants, pulling back muscles as I tried to shimmy pants over my hips, then having to do spastic calisthenics just to stretch the waistline out enough to get the button into the buttonhole. A truly exhausting process and not exactly a confidence-building start to the day at 6:30am.

2) I relinquish, with pleasure, ownership of the resultant fleshy muffin-top that then resided above the waistline of said pants noted in #1 above.

3) I gladly give up the feelings of bloatedness and lethargy after eating copious amounts of foods, usually within 2 hours of bedtime, as well as the nightly statement as predictable as the tides, "I shouldn't have eaten that much."

4) In the same vein, I will not miss giving up what had become a predictable restaurant conversation topic with my friends post-feeding-frenzy-consumption  -- "I can't believe I ate that much. We really need to get healthy and stop doing this. Where's that waiter with my gin and tonic?"

5) I will not feel deprived when I choose to eat one (1)  scoop of ice cream slowly instead of eating three (3) scoops of ice cream in Guinness Book of World Record time...and loaded with caramel topping (processed)...and nuts (you're eating ice cream! who needs more fat from the nuts?)....and maybe some peanut butter mixed in. I give up the idea that more tastes better!

6) I've found that spending less time at work (within reason) makes me work more effectively and with a fresher brain and attitude! I give up any feelings of guilt I used to feel if I left work early. Bye-bye, guilt! 

7) Similarly, I will not miss how I convinced myself daily for multiple years that the main reason I couldn't work out regularly, didn't work out on a schedule, was because I had so much work to do. Excuses, excuses.

8) I will not miss cold air against body parts that used to stick outside of the water in a full bathtub.  My parts have reduced just enough where it's all submerged now! (Well, most of it.)

9) And speaking of those few parts that aren't submerged, I will NOT miss a double D cup size one little bit!  I could deal with a little less gravity though.....sigh. 

10) And lastly, I will not miss being able to read 3 or 4 pages of a book while working on completing  "bathroom business".....ahhhh, the amazing and fast-acting power of fruits and vegetables, water and exercise!

Friday, March 27, 2009

In Prison The Entire Weekend

Hey Folks, like that blog title? Got your attention, didn't it?  

Will miss you all this weekend at yoga and at the meeting because of a project I'm heading up at the prison this weekend.  Think I won't be putting karma yoga to the test? Think again. Picture this:  me, 17 Purdue students, 20 offenders, and a muddy 60 x 60 foot area that has to become a park in 2 days complete with drainage pipes run, new soil laid, new sod laid, and two patios built.  

Add to that the projected weather that's expected:  Rain and tornados on Saturday and snow showers on Sunday. Whew -  starting to practice Uijay breathing at just the thought of it all.....suddenly, Chris's arm balances don't seem as challenging in light of this weekend and blending two rather diverse crowds of people in the midst of what will resemble a mud wrestling pit (minus any wrestling, I pray...the prison really frowns on that, you know).

Spent some meditative time late this afternoon focusing on creating salads with love and awareness. These will be part of the lunch I have planned for the folks tomorrow...the 7 or so offenders I work with regularly have shared how they are limited in the types of foods they receive at the prison (for example, iceberg lettuce vs. healthy spinach or mesclun). And so it was with this intention in mind that I put together two large, varied, colorful salads. I brought to mind with each cut of vegetables the look on the offenders' faces when I told them I was bringing in "real greens with real flavor"...you would have thought I told them they won the lottery. Such pleasure to know they would be getting flavorful, healthy food? Maybe tinged with the pleasure of knowing someone was doing something for them for no reason other I wanted to?  

It makes me think of  how each of us in the BTWG program have food at our disposal 24/7 -- and others do not. How many of us have the means to afford organic, and others don't. How we can pick and choose what we put in our bodies and others take what they can find.  How fortunate we are to have this choice. Makes me want to treat it with more responsibility.

Please, please tomorrow at yoga, send some good energy in the general direction of Indiana Women's Prison downtown. Send some compassion and understanding and nonjudgment toward all of us there working together.  Would love for that to rain down on us versus the skies unloading!  Namaste All.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Sherri D. - Back on Line

Strength and toning exercises are done for tonight - the fingers and arms are a-trembling !

Ah, the blog....it's been 3 weeks since my last post, yet so much has happened during that time. Where to start...

1) I took a week off and went to our condo on the beach in Alabama. My husband and my parents also went. The good news? For being in such a small condo for several days together, we didn't kill one another. The better news? We never even came close to any petty comments or outright rudeness or parental/child conflicts that so often mar family vacations. The best news? It truly was pleasant to see my 70+ year old parents enjoying themselves away from their usual routine, enjoying the fresh air and weather rather than staying inside and experiencing it through The Weather Channel -- to see them sitting on the terrace watching the ocean roll in, roll out, and just "being" really filled my heart. My mother got so tickled a few times that tears ran down her face and she could barely catch her breath -- not her usual demeanor -- and that alone was worth the entire trip.

2) Work at our very small nonprofit has been super busy and hectic -- and my response to it has been to work less. Yes, less.  And somehow by working less, I am getting more done. Hmmm....something to do with a clearer head and a better perspective maybe?  I've also let go of a lot of the weight that I personally put on my own shoulders, simply took it off and set it aside realizing it was slowing me down. When it comes to work, I have always tended to take it too seriously and work too hard. I have to think that a large portion of this comes down to when I left New Jersey just after turning 18 (with $800 in pocket and a parental relationship that had crashed and burned badly). Friends from Indiana drove out, loaded me up, and off I went to W. Lafayette, where I was unable to start my sophomore year due to no money whatsoever. I lived with friends a month or two, broke into an empty house and lived there on and off for a while, and tried to figure out how to live without my parent's money and support. Ah - Noble Roman's Pizza to the rescue. I went from kitchen help making pennies to kitchen manager making nickels!  Success to me at that time, for sure! And a lifeline really....I had never held a "real" job before, and I knew that I had  groceries to buy and rent & utilities due. AND it was something I did well and people recognized I did well, at a time when my parents were not recognizing me.  SO, somehow I think that whole time period of being thrust out there on my own to sink or swim shaped my approach to work - "do more, do it better, work harder, make people say 'wow' ". And once that work philosophy began leading me around, how warped and unbalanced I became - and still struggle with.  Okay - now I am rambling....enough of this. Suffice it to say that I am leaving work at a very reasonable time now, sometimes even by 3pm, doing my workouts, then getting home early enough to actually have some free time before bed, which leads to #3.

3) OK - this weather ROCKS!!!  Just have to add that....I LOVE this time of year. I love walking my flowerbeds and seeing the amazing growth that takes place overnight; flower stalks grow by inches. Petals pop open. It's incredible. And the songs of the morning birds (and our neighbor's damn rooster!!).   All I want to do is sit on my log cabin's porch or out on my mid-yard patio and soak it all up.  And I even have done this a few times, slowed down enough to watch the yard grow....heaven. Have stoked a few bonfires in the front yard too and relaxed by them...there's nothing like staring in to a fire and poking at logs when the flames start to die down.

4) Many people have commented that I have lost weight....I know I have and some days I really recognize it. It's funny though....when I was less firm and more flab and not looking as good as I could, I often thought about my weight and how I looked. Now that I know I am firmer and fitter, looking better has lost a lot of its power. I'm doing this to be better...whatever that "be" means at any given time. 

5) I have been thinking about some clothes shopping...I am not a shopping freak, never have been. But, some of my pants are now loose enough, making me appear to have "poopy butt".  And today, when I went into the bathroom, I absentmindedly pull my pants down with ease--and WITHOUT undoing the top button or zipper.  Yes, it's time to go shopping.  AND I GET TO BUY SMALLER BRAS!!!!!  Too much info? Tough.

6) Some of you already heard this at the Saturday meeting but when I was in Alabama, I went to a pilates course and really enjoyed it but didn't find it overly taxing. So I stayed for the Power Lifting class.....oh....my.....God.  BEST lesson in the world by staying for it. In a room of about 15+ people, I showed myself that my BTWG workouts were not close to me performing at my maximum ability.  What was different? Was it the ego realizing that others were in the class so I needed to really keep up and stay strong? Was it the mirrors that lined the wall that made me really observe myself? Was it me listening to my mind that was telling me during BTWG workouts, "that 's enough" even though my body was able to do more? Whatever it was, lesson learned. So upon returning to IN and doing the strength/toning workouts, I've really tried to push myself. 

7) While in Alabama, I ran a 9 minutes and 36 or 37 second mile!!!!  I can't remember the exact time I ran my mile for our initial fitness test but I think it was something like 12 minutes and 20 seconds.  YEAH!  The Chi Running book really is super, so common sense once you read it, and worth the investment.

8) Is anyone still reading this?  heehee   I should go back up and read through but I'm tired and I'm going to bed now.

I wish everyone a GREAT week of high energy, low calories (except those of you who have been told to eat more - so Bon Appetite to you!), and challenging workouts!