I guess I run now

or I’m trying to anyway.


Ugh! What is it with this semester?

So first it was the young women who didn’t want to postpone their group presentation one class period when their groupmate had been taken away in an ambulance right before class…a pretty good excuse for postponing, I thought.

Then I got an email from a student this morning complaining cause her group mate had a baby this weekend & the new mother “failed to contact me to let me know she wasn’t participating on the project anymore.” Did I miss something? An 18 or 19-year-old has a baby 2 months prematurely & she’s supposed to inform the people she’s working with on a group project, what, during labor? I guess she should’ve contacted her groupmate while she was taking a break from visiting her new baby boy in intensive care? OMG! Is this student insane? I let this student know the new mother wouldn’t be participating on Monday morning, how is that not sufficient notice? I let her know their group project requirements would be lessened since their group mate was taking a short leave from the class. How does it even enter your head to be offended cause someone didn’t notify you that they’d gone into labor unexpectedly over the weekend? UGH!

The email was of the type I really hate: a complaint where one student throws her groupmates under the bus. & coming from this student–who left class 40 minutes early yesterday cause, apparently, she’d scheduled herself to work at her job during our class period–I was having none of it. Apparently everyone has to make allowances for her schedule, but if anyone dares upset her expectations, WATCH OUT!

I haven’t sent a reply to the email cause I need to put some time between me and my anger with this young woman’s incredible insensitivity…maybe I’ll just talk to her in class tomorrow? I’m fighting my desire to crush her completely by letting her know how insensitive she was, but that’s no good…this girl has feelings too, she just can’t spare any of them for her classmates, apparently.

Filed under : General
By bigprof
On September 30, 2008
At 5:41 pm
Comments : 5

Post boot camp wrap up…

I figure I’ll let ya’ll in on what we do at boot camp should anyone here be curious enough to want to try it out. I did a little research to see how many calories are burned in these things (500-600 apparently) & it looks like they all have similar approaches, so my experiences (and tiny2b, see if this fits with yours) would be common.

First of all, yesterday was a terrible day of non-stop teaching, meeting, & running errands. On top of that, the dog did something to his eye (all bloodshot & painful looking) so into an already packed day, I had to fit in time to drop him off at the vet (thankfully they have a drop off service, so I didn’t have to wait for him to see the vet). So by the time I got to boot camp, I was really looking forward to it. Weird. Really weird for me.

We started off with a quick 1/2 mile run. Then 1 min jump rope, 1 min push ups, 1 min jump rope, 1 min push ups. I need to do some of this stuff over the weekend so I’m getting stronger.

Then we moved into some kind of round-robin dealy with multiple stations…I forget what they called this, but it’s all about pulling/pushing and endurance. So 1 min each of squats, sit ups, pull ups, weights pushed over head, jumping on a box (a la biggest loser, but I can’t do it, so I did steps), and in a plank position, kicking the crap out of a boxing bag (a mountain climber with an grudge sort of thing). So…6 minutes total. 6 minutes of total hell. The worst & longest 6 minutes of my life!

But when we finished the round, our trainer said something to us that I’ll remember for the rest of my life: she said, “okay, one minute rest & then we go again.”

Here’s the deal. I couldn’t possibly go again. No freakin’ way. I didn’t have it in me. I was done.

But we did it anyway. Boot camp is like a freight train: it just keeps coming and there’s no stopping it once it’s started.

So I kept pushing through each damn 1 minute exercise (and I swear she doesn’t use a stop watch, so she forgets the actual time).

And then she said it again, “okay, one minute rest & then we go again.” AaaaaaaaaaaaaRrrrrrrrrrGggggggggggHhhhhhhhh! I mean, never in my wildest dreams did I think we’d do two rounds, but three was totally out of the question!

But we did it anyway. Damn freight train. But as gawdawful as those 18 minutes were, I feel great for having done them. Great in the intellectual, not physical sense. Today my knees are screaming.

So that’s the latest from boot camp. They offer a 30-minute version at the Y, which I may sign up for after this month is over. Or, who knows, maybe I’ll sign up for another full boot camp. I hate, hate, hate it & I really like it a lot!

Okay, I’m off to buy veggies for dinner before my meeting. Happy day ya’ll. Keep fighting the good fight!

Filed under : General
By bigprof
At 10:07 am
Comments : 5

Post dinner party…

It was a great time & the food was wonderful. I kept my portions small, but given that one of the portions was cake with whipped cream & I washed everything down with 2 beers, I don’t think my portion control made much of a difference.

My friends brought their walking shoes, but by the time dinner was over, it was twilight going on night, which is the time of the bats. I’ve gotten used to the occasional bat flying about, but my friend wasn’t into it, at all. So we just played dominos all night & had a lovely time. I think the rest of us missed our post-dinner walk, so maybe we’ll extend it tonight.

Entertaining again is out for a while. Hubby spent the whole day cooking (which he loves doing) rather than writing his diss. So while it was a good time, I still need to make sure his weekends are free.

Okay, a lot of work to do & I want to get to the gym as well, so I’m off. Have a great day everyone!

Filed under : General
By bigprof
On September 28, 2008
At 8:01 am
Comments : 4

Dinner party!

We’re entertaining our first guests tonight: a friend from the department & her wife who’s a professional singer, opera, I think. They had me for dinner my first semester here & I never could return the favor because, well, my apartment was kinda depressing & not really equipt for guests.

Normally I’d use this dinner as an excuse to hang around the house all day cleaning & cooking. But I got up & read blogs first thing & by the time I’d made it through my blogroll heroes, ending with tylerdurden’s 10-mile run post, I was ready to get out of the house and into the gym.

So while hubby cooked (this is his meal, really) I ran/walked 3.25 miles. A lame time for them…46 minutes, but they were enjoyable miles. I kept my running speed between 4.6 & 5.0 for most of the time, but did 2 .1 mile sprints at 6.0. Not many runs…I planned to stop at 2 miles, so the last 1.25 was just me playing the OCD game with the distance, time, and calories. Walks at 3.8 except for the last .6 mile that I did at an incline of 3.0 & a speed of 3.4-3.6. Felt good to move after being sore all week. I don’t know, maybe runs between bootcamp would help me to rebound faster from bootcamp?

So thanks for the inspiration cause there was a time there this morning when I could’ve easily chucked my plan to run, but given everyone else’s amazing workouts, I was sorta shamed & inspired into going.

I’m journaling about my food on paper for bootcamp, so I’m taking a break from doing it here (not that I’ve been that consistent with it here anyway), but I wanted to share the dinner menu hubby has planned (mostly my plan, but he’s bringing it about): pork loin (was going to be chops, but these were on sale, so we stocked up), thai apple salad, mashed potatoes, steamed broccoli, and pineapple upsidedown cake. He’s threatening to make popovers, but with luck he’ll talk himself out of that one…too much good food!

It’s a deadly meal, but not terrible diet wise if I keep portions small. I had a protein shake for breakfast & a salad for lunch, so I’ve got some SOME! calories to spare…not many, though.  & I called my friend this afternoon to tell them to wear walking shoes so we can have a nice after dinner walk before we chow down on cake. Oh well, this is the first time I’ve entertained since I moved here (aside from the inlaws & parties at hubby’s place), so I guess we’re doing it up big! Yay us!

Filed under : General
By bigprof
On September 27, 2008
At 2:25 pm
Comments : 3

Jury duty & boot camp update…

Yup, that’s where I’ll be today. I really, really hope they have wireless at the courthouse so I can work & read blogs all day. I should’ve asked tiny2b if this was even a possibility. I really, really, really hope they don’t need me. My students, however, hope I get chosen & the trial runs all semester long. 🙂

Bootcamp Wednesday wasn’t terrible. There are some things I just can’t do with anything resembling coordination, like this combo squat to a jump to tossing a 15-pound medicine ball high at the wall to a catch on the way to a squat & repeat…40 times. Oh, and repeat 40 times while the other folks in the camp do sprints up & runs backwards back. They run until I’m done. That’s one thing I’m not going to like about boot camp. Yes, being accountible to everyone else means I can’t just decide to just relax during the plank or during a wall squat cause then everyone has to do another minute or two. But what if I can’t hold it? & OMG, this woman is obsessed with squats of every variety & thinks a good resting position is the plank.

Oh, but there’s another 40-year-old in the class. I just assumed she was younger cause I assume everyone is younger than me…one of the hazards (and joys, I guess) of working with college kids. & she was complaining mightily about being sore on Wednesday too. I didn’t see her try to walk down any stairs (the thing I couldn’t do without screaming), but maybe someone else is in the same boat. I didn’t pay attention to her on Monday cause we were always at opposite ends of the group, but on Wednesday she was having some trouble with stretches that made me think maybe we’d have been better partners.

Oh, so this is terrifying. We’re partnered up so that no one just decides not to show. But that means that if your partner decides not to show, you have to do extra. Shawn’s partner was 5 minutes late, so when class ended & we’d walked the medicine balls & other equipment up to the third floor, he had to do an additional 50 squats. CRAZY!

But boot camp is doable ya’ll. The pain for the next two days is insane, but most of the exercises are just ones that we all did in high school gym classes: sit ups, squats, push ups, squats, lunges across a field, jumping jacks, squats, running, legs up & bicycling, squats, the plank, squats, the plank with legs alternating in toward your stomac, some weight stuff, and squats. The only difference is you pretty much do every exercise until your muscles can’t possibly do any more; then you move on to the next one until those muscles are exhausted. Oh, & it’s outside, so lovely fall weather to enjoy & there’s this boot camp mentality that’s kinda fun.

Okay, that’s all from me. I’ve been doing 2 mile walks on non-bootcamp days & got in 1 1/2 on Wednesday. I’m planning for a run Saturday since it’s not long before my next 5k & maybe a swim on Sunday.

Cheers ya’ll!

Filed under : General
By bigprof
On September 26, 2008
At 5:03 am
Comments : 5

Oh the pain, the pain!

Yes, there’s still pain. Tons of it. Pain to spare. But I should spare you the painfully dull & self-indulgent details.

Yesterday my mouth got the most workout what with my constant moans, groans, and complaints. I did manage 2 walks with hubby, but they were slower walks than normal. At least the walks kept me loose, right? The upside is that with all this bootcamp pain, I had no desire to snack away whatever good I may have done on Monday. So my only snack yesterday was 1/2 a peach. That’s progress since my nights have included things like nuts & pretzels or worse, some kind of fruit cobbler or fat free pudding for the last few weeks. Gee, my snacks alone are probably worth a 1/2 pound loss a week.

So the goal is to lose 10-12 pounds before Thanksgiving, nice and easy. I have a trip to San Antonio right before that, so the Thanksgiving goal will, hopefully, keep me honest on my trip. I think that will be enough of a loss for my family to notice. Then it’s another 5-7 pounds (at breakneck speed) before Christmas, which should be enough for the in-laws to notice. I’m all about getting noticed now, apparently. Then I’m buying a new pair of 2-sizes smaller jeans for my birthday on the 30th to celebrate a good year of getting in shape & I’ll be ready for another year.

Have a great day everyone!

Filed under : General
By bigprof
On September 24, 2008
At 5:45 am
Comments : 3

Boot Camp? Really now?

So we ended up going a little past the deadline for our project, but a couple of days isn’t a big deal. I kept food sensible most of the time, although there is evidence of two trips to the vending machine in my office trash can…M & Ms. One bag on Sunday when I was in trying to catch up on grading and organizing for my classes…very frustrating cause the work keeps piling up no matter how my priorities may shift. Now there’s a statement everyone here can relate to. We ate sensibly…Thai one night, but otherwise we stuck to home cooked meals (baked chicken, bean soup, beef stew, and lots of salads). & we walked a couple of miles every night just to take a break, so I got a little exercise in there.

But not enough! I needed to take a pre-bootcamp to get in shape for bootcamp. I am the oldest, fattest, and most out of shape person in our 6-person group. I sucked at last night’s fitness test…8 situps, 9 pushups, a 12:10 mile (actually, I was proud of that, but I was still the last to finish…the one guy in the group joined me for the last two laps, just cause he had nothing else to do…actually, his being there pushed me to go a little faster, so I might like running with others). The only thing I kicked butt (pun intended) on was the squats. I managed 57 in whatever time she alloted for this (a minute?) while the next best number was 46. Of course, I’m short, so I have less distance to travel. 🙂 & oh the pain, the pain. I can’t even really touch my thighs without screaming today.

She’s got us doing stuff I haven’t even thought about doing in years…jumping jacks, push ups (the real kind), sit ups (not just crunches), and some stuff that I clearly can’t manage cause I have neither strength nor coordination.

After the squats we moved upstairs to the track for the run, but my legs were so wobbly, I was afraid I’d fall on my face. Then around the second lap (it’s 12 laps to the mile at my gym), I figured I was destined to end up with my head in a trash can like all those folks on Biggest Loser during the first week. Hubby says I should endeavor to stop before vomiting becomes a possibility…good advice that.

& last night was the first and easiest night cause we had to get weighed and measured & do the test & talk nutrition. She kept us 20 minutes late, but I still think we haven’t seen the worst of it yet. The nutrition talk was…a nutrition talk. I’m always waiting for someone to tell me something I don’t know during these kinds of things…like “of course studies have shown that just one scoop of ice cream a day can help you cut your weight by 10% in just two weeks.” But it’s always the same: eat fruit, eat veggies, eat lean meats, cut down on the carbs. I follow this already, for the most part, my problem is portion control & wild snacking. But she did recommend more protein for breakfast, so for the duration of bootcamp, I’m going to do protein shakes (blueberry one today) instead of my usual Kashi & blueberries. Figure the extra protein may help my poor muscles to rebuild faster…right? Isn’t that the logic of protein?

Okay, tomorrow I’m reading blogs! I glanced through a few on Sunday & see that Eryn got the house, but I’m out of touch here & missing everyone! For today, well, one more day & I’ll be all caught up on grading and other work…just in time for the next batch!

Happy day ya’ll!

Filed under : General
By bigprof
On September 23, 2008
At 9:05 am
Comments : 7

Light, tunnel, you know the rest…

Thanks for the support of my crappy day! Ya’ll are wonderful!

I can’t believe it, but it looks like hubby & I are going to make this deadline we’ve been working towards all week! I’ve been eating well & taking 1.5-2 mile walks with him every day, but it’ll be nice to get back to the gym this weekend….& bootcamp starts Monday! I’m actually looking forward to it, although mostly hoping for results at the end & not looking forward to the getting-there bit.

Okay, I’ll do food from yesterday, not great since I worked through lunch & we made cobbler, but otherwise typical:

Breakfast: usual

Lunch: none

Snack: 1 cup black-eyed peas & 12 pretzels (I guess I could call this a late lunch)

Dinner: 1 cup black-eyed peas, salad, very small piece of ham, 1 cup blueberry cobbler

Snack: tea with milk & honey, 12 pretzels with 2 tbs hummus.

Exercise: 2 mile walk.

Okay, back at it!

Happy day everyone!

Filed under : General
By bigprof
On September 19, 2008
At 6:12 am
Comments : 5


So everything’s getting sidetracked this week…or I’m letting that happen…I guess I’m writing this cause I don’t want that to happen!

Yesterday I got a rejection letter for an article I’ve been working on for over a year. The reviewer was pretty brutal & actually threw out the observation that the women I was writing about “weren’t that obscure” cause they’re “featured prominently” in one of my discipline’s histories. I guess being “featured prominently” is having one of the three women included in one group photo and 2 out of three being mentioned in passing on 4 other pages of a 300-page book. I guess that’s about all the attention this reviewer thinks these women deserved after all their work behind the scenes of our national organization 100 years ago. Yeah, I’m bitter. There are some useful suggestions in the review that I can use to revise so I can submit the article elsewhere, but it’s clear that I’m going to hit a lot of elitist @$$holes out there who don’t get why it’s important to recognize what the women academics were doing at this time. I guess that’s useful information too.

On top of the rejection, one of my students passed out in the hallway on her way to class, paramedics were called. Apparently she has problems with seizures & they’ve been adjusting her medication. All reports have it that she just dropped to the floor & hit her head pretty hard. She was out when I saw her. So that’s depressing, but it gets worse: when I told her group they could present on Wednesday so that this girl wouldn’t miss out on the presentation & grade, well, they pretty much threw this poor girl under the bus ambulance, and said, “can’t we just go ahead and go today without her?” Apparently she missed their meeting last week, so they were angry with her & didn’t want to present with her anyway, but it didn’t occur to them that she may have missed their meeting for a pretty sound medical reason. & it was pretty obvious: on top of the fact that I told them their group mate was being attended to by paramedics, the damn stretcher was out in the hallway, as obvious as can be. Finally, in frustration, I asked them, “what would you do if you were me?” & they admitted they didn’t know the fair thing to do. So I said, “fine, you’ll present with her on Wednesday & I’ll email to let her know she needs to get in touch with you.”

On top of that, the site we use for our online classes was down all weekend so 1/2 of my students didn’t do the assignments. This was the first weekend they had an online class (they finish work online over the weekend rather than coming to class on Friday), and it’s always a mess anyway the first weekend with them getting to know the technology, but this was the worst. First, one of the linked sites they had to read went down on Saturday, then the whole damn site went down on Sunday so they couldn’t see the assignment, much less post it to our classroom. So there was already a lot of nervous tension in the room (on top of them giving their first presentations on their first projects) & my teaching was off, way off. I was really, really bad. What a crappy day!

Yesterday’s food looked like this:

breakfast: usual

teaching, from hell

lunch: salad

letter arrives

lunch 2: cup of cheese soup & a pint at the brew pub

lunch 3: 2 of those round chocolate dealies, 12 pretzels & hummus, 1 cup of peach cobbler

dinner: beef stew with French bread

snack (gee, didn’t I earn one?) another beer.

Exercise: at least hubby got me out there: 2 mile walk. That was a good idea, not just to try to burn some small amount of calories, but because it cleared my head.

Clearly I’ve structured this food report to suggest a clear cause–effect relationship, but it’s eating to deal with stress that I’m supposed to be working on here & part of that work requires that I recognize that I’m not a helpless victim to stress-eating. I can say no. I can find other outlets. Yesterday, clearly I decided not to do that, but it was a decision I had control over.

The walk cleared my head but I was already feeling better about the rejection earlier in the day when it hit me that as shitty as I felt, at least my bad day at work wasn’t because I screwed up and an innocent person went to jail or someone died  or my inability to argue well ended up in an important social safetynet being eliminated for people who really need it or a building collapsed cause I didn’t do the right kind of math or a plane crashed or…Yeah, I guess I prefer my kind of crappy day.

Okay, hubby’s making a godawful noise in the kitchen, time to investigate.

I’m already feeling better & thinking about reivising the title of this post.

Happy day chicks!

Filed under : General
By bigprof
On September 16, 2008
At 9:45 am
Comments : 5

Yesterday & today

Hubby & I have a deadline to meet on Friday, so yesterday was a work day (read: no workout day). It rained & rained & rained again…getting sick of the rain now. Here’s yesterday’s food:

breakfast: usual

lunch: salad with hb egg

dinner; beef stew with multigrain french bread & 1/2 tbs butter

snack; still going for rainy-day comfort foods, so fresh peach cobbler. I didn’t even try to make it light, but instead focused on eating a small portion & being satisfied.


Breakfast: usual

lunch: salad with hb egg

dinner: stew again, probably

Exercise: will be none. If we can make work progress today, I’ll run or swim tomorrow.

Filed under : General
By bigprof
On September 15, 2008
At 5:38 am
Comments :1