August 29, 2014

Goodbye Girls!

Guest Post by Heather Lee

While Crabby continues her travels abroad, this next guest post is by a favorite blog commenter Heather Lee. She also has her own great blog, The Spotted Cat.  Besides being one of the nicest humans on the planet, Heather is a funny gal and quite an inspiration when it comes to getting healthy and fit!

This post deals with a what might be a familiar phenomenon for many women shedding excess weight: unfortunately we can't choose WHERE those pounds are going to drop from first.

So please welcome Heather Lee! --Crabby

For many women, a notable drawback to weight loss is the possible reduction of breast acreage. I’ve known a few ladies who refused to even try because they feared losing their favorite asset. It’s an understandable reaction. Whether your opinion of your girls is “hey, not bad” or “you are magnificent,” the thought of a big change in that area is pretty daunting. But! There is hope! After losing nearly 70 pounds, I feel qualified to offer a little perspective to women worried about changing their measurement ratio. Yes, your gazongas may very well lose a little zong, but I promise it isn’t all bad. To help, let’s look at a few specific worries that might pop up.

August 27, 2014

Half Sick of Shadows

This is another guest post from Genie, yay!  You may remember the previous post about her inspirational fitness journey, and might have been wondering about some of the specifics. So she generously offered to supply a few.

(And where is Crabby McSlacker and why the heck is she so slow in posting any of the great guest posts she's received?

Well, at the moment, Crabby and the Lobster are cruising the Rhine, and while she doesn't expect any sympathy on that front, the internet aboard has been extremely pissy and mean, and it dislikes Crabby in particular and goes into hiding whenever she even LOOKS at her computer.  But she swears she's at least been trying, and every now there's a little window of connectivity which she will attempt to exploit:

But she apologizes for not finding any relevant pictures for this post, and hopes you won't wander away from the blog completely, as there will be more great guest posts coming and even possibly a few trip photos or updates squeezed in). 

Anyway, Genie's story is a great illustration of a Cranky Fitness Fundamental Truth:  the road to health and fitness is not always a smooth one.  In fact, sometimes it feels like a series detours strewn with potholes, broken glass, and roadkill.

So what do you do? Pull over at the first rest stop, scarf up a double cheeseburger and head back home? Or try to keep going?  Well, I'll let Genie fill you in on which approach she takes.

Thanks Genie!

“I am half-sick of shadows” – “The Lady of Shalott” by Alfred, Lord Tennyson

Disclaimer: I did some stupid things on my path to fitness that no one should do. EVER. I am no longer a fitness professional and I am not a physician, an exercise physiologist or a physical therapist. The message here isn’t about doing what I did. The moral of the story is at the end so you’ll have to slog through all the drivel to get to it!

So, I had an eating plan, a menu and a well-stocked kitchen. I needed a work-out plan that would get me back into fighting shape. Here’s a secret: I’ve been in fighting shape before. Hell, I was a fitness instructor at one point in my life (Best. Job. Ever!). So I had some information but that was from a time in my life before fat, age and chronic pain caught up with me. I had to make some decisions about how to handle all this.

August 22, 2014

Can Money Ever Buy Happiness?

Photo: x-ray delta

By Crabby McSlacker

OK, so I'm not foolish enough to suggest that money can generally buy happiness. Otherwise, why would so many rich people be miserable grasping insufferable poopy-heads?  But in my experience, there are indeed times when thoughtful financial investments can reap substantial experiential rewards.

For example, travel comes to mind as an awesome place to spend some cash in order to chase a bit of joy and excitement and fresh appreciation for life.  Which is the reason I am posting this the day we're taking off for an adventure in Europe!  (As you may recall, it is all the fault of the Dowager Countess of Grantham.)

True, I really did insist.

(And btw, this also means you can expect some awesome guest posts while I'm gone and innumerable tedious vacation pictures when I get back, and perhaps some mid-trip updates along the way, but you regulars already know the drill).

But here's the thing:  We got our vacation at a big discount, because we bought it way in advance, and took advantage of an early bird special.  And so any happiness we may have purchased will be twice as sweet!

So I thought I'd let you know about another great investment in happiness that's on sale:

Check out Rick Hanson's: The Foundations of Well-Being Early Bird Special!  It's $50 Off if you SIGN UP AND PAY BEFORE AUGUST 31st.

This course starts October 1.  I'm doing the whole thing too, and I'm hoping a few Cranketeers might want to join me and perhaps we can discuss along the way?  We can hang either at Rick's place (there are forums and maybe I can start a thread there) or I can riff over here and we can do the comment thing.

So what the heck is it? And why am I harping on about it when I should be finishing up the last of my packing?

August 18, 2014

Swimming Lessons

By Crabby McSlacker

OK, so regular readers may recall that:
  1. I recently hurt my back;
  2. I am hilariously inept at my physical therapy exercises and seem to be making little progress yet in the back-healing department;
  3. I've been bemoaning my lack of back-friendly exercise options and bitching about how I am getting less fit by the day;
  4. I discovered taking up swimming might be a feasible option; and,
  5. I have always loathed everything about swimming.
(A quick review? Let's see: apparel requirements; chlorine; my lack of natural floatiness or coordination; being forced to arrange breathing opportunities instead of snarfing up air any damn time I want to; and sharing a pool with other people. And of course most excruciatingly: having to initiate the activity by submerging myself voluntarily in cold nasty evil frigid wetness. Acck! For a warm-blooded mammal such as myself, this feels like a profoundly unnatural act).

Seriously, the only great thing about swimming is that eventually it is over with.

So, one might wonder, given my wonderful positive attitude towards the whole enterprise: how is the swimming thing going so far?  Can an Old Crab learn some New Tricks? And are there any tedious lessons said Old Crab can share from her experience?

August 11, 2014

Injured? Hooray!

By Crabby McSlacker

So yeah, this is me trying to do the whole positive reframe thing.  Can I stop whining for a few minutes and attempt to consider that having a back injury is not something to kvetch about? Perhaps it is even a wonderful growth opportunity in disguise?

But no worries, fellow crankypants skeptics. I'll excuse you for a moment if you want to step outside and barf. (Just remember for the sake of your coworkers or loved ones to mop up afterwards, and be sure to brush your teeth).

The weird thing is...  this is not just some a total bullshit attempt to cheer myself up.  I can actually see both sides: When you want to be active and are sidelined, injuries suck! And yet injuries can also lead to really freakin' good stuff.

The trick, I'm thinking, is deciding whether to cope with injuries in Typical Dumbass Ways, or try to be more Clever and Sneaky about it. Having tried plenty of the former techniques, I thought it might be time to experiment with something different for a change.

August 07, 2014

Seen in NYC

So this isn't a real post, just a handful of photos I took on the road in New York. I'm heading back home today.

And I will try to forgo extensive whining about my back injury, whatever the hell it is. A Progress Report (or an Amusing Lack of Progress Report) on physical therapy may follow at some point, but I'm really hoping to write one of those cheerful "my triumphant return to working out!" sort of inspirational things, not another bitchstravaganza of frustrations and gripes. So I'm thinking I"ll give it a bit more time.

Meanwhile, no running or biking or ellipticalling or weights. But lots of walking right past notable NYC landmarks and not photographing them! Only to capture weird shit no one else would possibly want to look at instead.

August 04, 2014

Deciding I Don't Want to Die

By Genie; posted by Crabby McSlacker

I am seriously psyched to bring you this guest post--it’s quite inspiring and motivating, as you shall soon see. And another cool thing? This was sent by a heretofore anonymous “lurker,” who challenged herself to tell her story in a more public venue. 

However, I need a favor here. I'm hoping that when you get to the end and think to yourselves: "I want to hear more from Genie, she should have a blog of her own!" that you keep your big traps shut about that, ok?  Say instead, "I hear starting a new blog is kind of a pain in the ass, but you should really keep contributing posts to Crabby's blog!"

Got that?

OK, I'm off gallivanting in NYC but I leave you in good hands today; please welcome Genie!


When Crabby sent out an invitation for guest posts, I thought, “Why the hell not?” So I mustered my courage and sent out an email with a short version of my story. Her response was so warm and immediate, I had to “screw my courage to the sticking place” (apologies to Lady Macbeth) and do it.

For better or worse then, this is the short version of how I decided I didn’t want to die anymore.