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Day three of awesome head and chest cold. I did go to work, to avoid boredom, so I'm not SUPER SICK, but I am going to bed as soon as I post this, though I'm shocked to see it's after ten. The evening just flies by when you get home at 7:30.

More on the Dodie Smith front. I read an essay called "Literary Executions" by Julian Barnes which was supposed to be about wresting control of film rights for I Capture the Castle back from Disney (which bought them up after the success of 101 Dalmations), but the essay proved to be nothing of the sort. It was a good essay, yes, and an entertaining one, and did discuss things like how Dodie Smith had heard once that the Japanese eat dogs, and refused to have her work published there, and how Barnes had to decide if Smith's misinformation meant that he should respect her wishes verbatim or go with the spirit of the wish and make her heirs another sum of money. It was an interesting essay for other reasons, too, like how being a literary executor (and a conscientious one at that) is a way to pay back a writing mentor.

Have not done Greek in weeks, and no gym in days. I did garden all weekend, which was supposed to fill in for the gym, and the last time I went to the gym, I hopped on the rowing machine and hopped back off a broken woman. At the same time, between my sore throat, a good week at the gym last week, and eating just a tiny bit more sensibly, I have dropped ten pounds, but that just brings me down to my pre-winter weight. No, the goal isn't too lose weight, the goal is to feel better--but the goal is also to be able to take up running again, and quite honestly, running is going to require shedding a significant portion of my extra baggage for me to really enjoy it.

May 1st, btw, marked the 1-year anniversary of taking my fitness more seriously. For the record, I started water aerobics and did that three times a week for the whole summer, and this increased my endurance to the point that I could contemplate things like doing 30-40 minutes on the elliptical machine or stationary bike. During trips to the lake, I kayaked as well, which I rather enjoy. I also took up yoga this January, and the benefits of that have been tremendous. My exercise schedule does occasionally get slapdash, but I have put in more exercise in the past year than I probably had in the previous ten years. Well, since I gave up running, I guess. Or paintball.

I still have a lot of ground to cover.


( 2 comments — Leave a comment )
May. 8th, 2008 06:21 am (UTC)
A rowing machine will do that - if you're not used to it, that might be the reason, rather than you being out of shape.

For one thing, it burns more calories than almost anything (except possibly a NordicTrak). For another people who haven't used it a whole lot tend to be bad at pacing themselves on it, so you go full out until you want to throw up. And thirdly, even gym trainers are always stupid about the tension and tend to push it up all the way.

Assuming you're on a Concept II machine or something like it where you can set the tension, if it's got a scale of 10, put it down to about 3. This is close to the feel of a real boat. You will *not* burn less calories this way, it just means you go at a little faster rate (more strokes per minute) to achieve the same speed. (Speed is often given in "splits", which means, "rowing this hard, how long would it take to go 500 meters?".) Then try not to row at full pressure. Think of it as jogging: pick a pace you can maintain for 20 minutes or so.

Unfortunately I can't show you proper form easily,but you can see what it looks like . Notice: starting fro the catch (when his body is closest to the flywheel) it's legs, body, arms going back, then arms, body legs coming up.
May. 8th, 2008 02:33 pm (UTC)
Heh. I was hoping you'd weigh in.

I actually wasn't really a broken woman after the rowing machine. (And the tension actually felt really low, though I honestly had my feet all strapped in before I even thought about tension, so I just went with it. I expected more resistance, though.)

Anyway, I really enjoyed it--I just could feel it in the muscles between legs and abdomen (whatever those are called) when I got off. I had to go stretch for twenty minutes afterwards, and the next day I had twinginess, which isn't usual for me with exercise anymore.
( 2 comments — Leave a comment )

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