A grandmother is a mother who has a second chance

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

Not feelin' the burn

For those of you who have been reading my blog for awhile, you know that back in April Ed had a couple of stents put in. Well, a two weeks ago he tried to get back to exercising (not something either of us enjoy) and felt some tightness in his back. Needless to say, we both got a bit worried. But a couple of doctor's appointments and a stress test later we found out there wasn't anything wrong. Just out of shape. The doctor did, however, tell Ed that he needed to lose some weight - not much, only 10-15 pounds. But losing that would help raise his HDL and prevent him from becoming diabetic (which runs in the family). So now he has a goal and a plan. The doctor told him the most imporant thing was to watch his calories. I've convinced him that he also has to watch the fat and sugar, and go for high fiber. I mean, 2000 calories a day need to be balanced. Not comprised of 7 brownies and a scoop of ice cream! He wasn't happy about that, but he's on a roll now.

We found a couple of calorie counting sites on the Internet and he started his daily counting. We've had to have some in-services because he's never really paid attention to labels or nutritional value. That was my job (I'm the girl, you know). Everything he puts into his mouth - or is tempted to put into his mouth - is now entered into the computer to determine calories. He's making himself a little nuts (150 calories for almonds....) but it is teaching him to be more aware of what he eats.

My family hasn't had much luck with the whole dieting and exercise thing. It goes way back. When I was 10, my dad got this bright idea that the four of us should walk to the shopping center that was a couple of miles from the house. There was a little diner there and he just thought it would be great fun and wonderful exercise. Mom mentioned something using the word "crazy", but off we went. We whistled, we sang, I skipped, just a glorious family event. By the time we got to the diner we were whipped. Did I mention that my dad was a four-pack a day smoker? He was definitely huffing and puffing. While we ate, he found a pay phone and began calling neighbors to find someone who would take pity and come pick us up.

My grandmother, Nani Gene, decided to go on a soft-boiled egg diet. The idea was to have two soft-boiled eggs, sans butter, for breakfast, salad for lunch, and god knows what for dinner. So she popped the eggs into the boiling water and set the timer. While waiting for the eggs to cook, she managed to eat almost a whole loaf of bread WITH butter that her mom had made! Scratch that diet.

My mother and aunt decided to start exercising at home and bought the Richard Simmons "Sweatin' to the Oldies" VCR tapes. One day I went to my mom's house to visit and there she was, sitting on the couch with my aunt, both of them munching something, watching the videos! I asked them if they were aware that they actually had to DO the exercises Richard was demonstrating and not just watch them. They said they tried, but it was too hard. However, they really enjoyed the music and the other people dancing so they just decided to watch.

Another time my mom decided to take an aerobics class. She didn't want to do too much jumping around because her knees were starting to be bothersome, so she found a class for seniors. What she didn't know was that all of the exercises were done sitting in a chair. A few leg lifts, arm lifts, etc. She decided she wasn't quite old enough for chair aerobics just yet so that also went by the wayside.

I tried the aerobics thing once. Got myself this cute little outfit (much skinnier back then) and headed with a friend to a class at the local school. It was held in the library. Did I mention that coordination is not one of my strong points?!? Well, sir, one leg kick got my friend right in the butt. Another kick knocked some books off the shelf. Deep six the aerobics.

So now we have a treadmill and if I watch a movie while treading (?), I can get 30-60 minutes in. That's about it. Ed can do 30-45 but at a much higher speed.

Wish us luck.


Desert Diva said...

When I lived in Indianapolis I belonged to a woman's gym that was relatively close to my home. That was the best shape I was ever in.

Now, I especially watch cholesterol and fat in food. I can eat a black bean veggie burger with non-fat cheese on a whole wheat bun and actually enjoy it.

I've gained a few pounds over the winter and look forward to hiking with Cali to "get back to normal."

ira said...

I could use some help here too!

Fleur de Lisa said...

I don't think that I could ever do a 'diet' but I just have trained myself to eat healthy and treat myself to a bit too. It's all about balance.

Once you get in the habit, the endorphins kick in and you love the exercise, I promise.

Good for the both of you! :)


LMAOOOOOOO about Nani Gene eating the whole loaf of bread while waiting for the eggs to boil!! Sounds just like something I would do!!