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Archive for the ‘Exercise’ Category


For quite some time now, I’ve been blaming my total lack of video-gaming ability on my age.  I am so bad at Wii that according to my Wii Fit, I should be stumbling all over the place, barely able to walk and talk on my cell phone at the same time. But I don’t really care what the Wii Fit says, because I just tell myself (and all of you), I’m past forty!  It’s chronologically impossible for me to learn this stuff.  So what if my son has shown me 47 times how to play The Legend of Starfy, and I still can’t get past level one?  So what if I get trapped in the same damn room in Fossil Fighters every time I try. Or if Super Mario Brothers for me will forever be Mario, Renzo, and Bob, the tennis counselors at my camp?  Age, for once, is on my side. I am not of the generation to master vidoe games of any kind. Put that in your remote and click it.

And then I heard this: baby boomers and seniors are playing video games.  A lot.  Believe it or not, more than 25 percent of all video game players are 55+ per www.theesa.com.  And not just older people…but OLD people.  See that picture?  That was taken at a senior centers where Nintendo, as part of a month-long program, brought video games for seniors (and their grandkids) to play.

Did these people use their age as an excuse? You can bet they did.  But then, guess what?  They started loving it.  They’re playing, they’re starting Wii Bowling Leagues.  They’re good at it.  Which is all fine and dandy for them, but what does it say about ME?  I cannot hula Wii style, or ski jump, or balance those little friggin balls on the 3D platform.  And apparently, it’s not my age, it’s ME! These old people may be getting exercise, being social, connecting with their grandkids but me,  I’m just a spaz.

Gee thanks, Nintendo.

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Full Disclosure: While I have received goods from Nintendo in the past, no goods, services or pay was received in conjunction with this post.

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After months of excuses, real (moving, swine flu, pneumonia) and not (too busy, too tired, too many other things to do) I went back to working out this week. Monday was 45 minutes on the treadmill. A puff of the old inhaler and I was good to go.
Tuesday was…oh yeah, didn’t make it to the gym on Tuesday . (see unreal excuses, above)
Yesterday was Yoga at the brand-spanking new and oh-so beautiful Pure Yoga on the West Side (still un-sceney and uncrowded. Enjoy it while you can.)
And today was Nia.
For those of you who don’t know, Nia is…well, it’s hard to describe. I think of it as guided creative movement. It’s not really dance…but it sort of is. It’s not “aerobics” but it can be very aerobic. It’s not Yoga, but there are elements of Yoga and Tai Chi and Modern Dance. There is also a lot of talk about being in touch with your body, and about a sense of play. I’ve written about it here, if you want to know more.
ANYhoo, normally, Nia class makes me feel great, invigorated, and pretty damn good about myself. But today…not so much.  Because today, my instructor decided that we should spend the whole class feeling sexy.

Huh?

I’m exercising, buddy. I’m wearing an old Alvin Ailey T-shirt, I have no make-up on, I’m sweating, I’m barefoot, I’m worried that since I’ve done nothing aerobic in two months that my pneumonia compromised lungs will collapse… and you want me to feel sexy?

I don’t feel sexy.  I don’t even want to think sexy.  All I want to think about is what I’m gonna eat when this is over.

To make things worse, he kept on using the idea of a puppy as an image. As in “scoop your arms as if you were picking up a puppy.”

Picking up, scoop and puppy. What do those two words make me think of?

You guessed it, picking up my puppy’s poop. In the living room. In my son’s bedroom. Everywhere, it seems, but outside.

So between the sexy talk and the puppy I did NOT feel empowered and invigorated. I felt sweaty and decidedly unsexy. And I kept on smelling poop.  Please, please, let the puppy not have pooped on something I’m wearing.

Ah well, enough complaining.  Time to go walk the dog.

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I don’t really have time to post today:
Sick dog (for a change)
Stinky Dog (just bathed him. fun fun fun)
Daughter needs socks brought to her at school on the other side of town. (don’t ask)
Dryer broken
Going back to Yoga (finally…I hope)
No food in house. (though I did get Fresh Direct yesterday…so I don’t really get it) Must go shopping.
Actual (paid) work assignment to complete. (shocking, I know.)
Much incredibly smelly laundry (sick dog is pooping inside again. Fun fun fun.)

You’re all jealous now, right? Because I have such a wonderful life.

And now, as a complete non-sequitor, the Today Show is in the background, and they just announced that marriage makes you fat. Yay! Single women gain 11 lbs over ten years. Married women gain double that. But God bless Piers Morgan…he just announced that he thinks that’s great. He wants his model-thin girlfriend to bulk-up. I think I’m in love.

ANYHOO- here’s the post I would have written if I had had the time. It pretty much sums up how I’m feeling today. And while you read it, imagine me doing lunges. That’s what I did. (Imagined me doing them. I didn’t actually do them. Puh-lease. Did you see that list of things I’ve got to do?)

Click and read. Click and Read.

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Ah, the holiday season.  A chance to spend time with loved ones….eating.

A time to go out and celebrate.  And eat.

A time to have more excuses to stuff your face than any other time of the year.  (With the possible exception of birthdays.  After forty, the only way through a birthday is with spoon in one hand, ice cream in the other.)

This holiday season, however, I am offering you an out: A free copy of Wii Fit Plus.

In my never ending quest to be – if not thin – then at least thinner than I have been most of my adult life, I have tried it all.  Starting back in High School when I went on The Woman Doctor’s Diet for  Teenaged Girls (which involved eating nothing but oranges and hamburgers for a week. Really) to the low-fat hi-carb/lo-carb-high fat crazes, to relatively sane diets like  Weight Watchers, or simply shutting my mouth every once in a while. (I’m writing a book about that one, it’s going to be called: The Get up off your Lazy Ass and Stop Stuffing your Face Diet.)

But the bottom line for me, a woman who has weighed more or less the same (within 5 pounds – other than pregnancy) for more than twenty-five years, is that I need to exercise to change my body. (or get Swine Flu. Neither a very tempting option.)

I have more excuses for NOT going to the gym than reasons to go there.  I don’t have time.  I have a headache.  I have to cook dinner/go shopping/write a post/pull out my toenails with a tweezer.  Basically, ANYTHING but exercise.  But then this new crop of exercise games for the Wii showed up.  The Wii Fit basically ruined any chance I had of ever having a believable, justifiable excuse not to exercise.

For those of you who haven’t heard of it (like, say, those of you who never read, watch tv, listen to the radio, or are anywhere within 100 feet of a child) the Wii Fit was Nintendo’s genius idea to make the already pretty good for exercising Wii into a true exercise machine.  The Wii Fit tracks your exercise success by letting you set weight loss and BMI goals, and then letting you know who you’re doing.  You get an avatar trainer. and then follow along with the Mii’s as you do a series of balance, strenght, or aerobic exercises.  It’s fun, and it works. (Not that it’s the greatest workout ever, but it sure beats sitting at home and typing on a computer, which is what I’m doing right now. Yeah.)

The Wii Fit Plus, the latest incarnation of their already enormously successful game, takes it all one step farther.  Now you get to choose your workout, personalize it, set how much time you want to spend, pick a pre-set routine, or make up your own.  There’s a locker room, and more choices, more ways to personalize.

I’d do it more myself, but I have to cook dinner/go shopping/write a post/give away my copy. (full disclosure: it’s one of two free copies that Nintendo sent me.  One for review, one to give away.  And I’m giving it.)

So, do you want to get in shape without having to leave your home?  Or, if it doesn’t really get you in shape, do you want to at least not turn into a total slug in this, the how much can you eat in one six week period holiday season?

Leave a comment below, telling me what holiday indulgence is your worst, and I’ll enter you to win a brand-spanking new copy of Wii Fit Plus. (please note: you need to own a Wii Fit Balance Board to use this game.  Don’t say I didn’t warn you.) Winner will be chosen by random.org on Sunday, December 13th at 9pm. Contest open to US residents 18 and older.

Want more chances to win?  Link back to this post on your own website, and I’ll enter you again every time someone links over. Tweet this contest, and include the hashtag #hip2housewife giveaway, and I’ll enter you yet again.

Hey, everyone could use a little flab insurance over the holidays.  Why not you?

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JM Fitness 2010 Wii 07So the good people at Role Mommy (thanks, Beth) sent me my very own copy of Jillian Michael’s Fitness Ultimatum 2010- the brand-spanking new game for my (also gratis – thanks Nintendo) Wii Fit, for free.

The first few days after it arrived, I told myself the weather was still good, and I should exercise outdoors.  So I didn’t open it.  The next several days, it rained non-stop, and I figured that exercising indoors would just remind me of how awful it was outdoors.  So I didn’t open it.  For a few days after that, I was either very busy, feeling a little under the weather, or just sitting quietly, thinking up excuses for not exercising. It’s been about two weeks since it’s been here, unopened on my desk.

So today, I decided to open it and get started.  I’ve written about this before, but this Wii game (which does not necessitate having a Wii Fit — though it helps) is a brand new, hot of the presses, updated version of Jillian’s Fitness Ultimatum 2009.  This time, Jillian is on the beach, in the jungle, on top of a mountain.  She offers lots of (canned) music choices.  And she yells at you if you mess you.  No kidding.

Recently, the scale in my bathroom has inexplicably showed lower numbers.  Yet I’m flabbier than ever.  So I think it’s the “lose muscle mass/lose weight”  routine, which inevitably leads to the “have lost muscle mass/gain weight” equation.  Jillian, I need you.

So I broke out the game, spent 15 minutes figuring out how to work the Wii with our new hi-tech system (simpler is better, believe me), and pressed A to start.

That’s when Bentley, our new puppy, freaked out.  He has not yet barked in the house (this is day 5 of him being with us, by the way), but something about Jillian sent him into a frenzy.  He dove under the coach, barking like mad, and stayed there.  When I tried to do the moves Jillian was demonstrating (or her avatar was, anyway) Bentley just barked harder.

At first, I figured that Bentley had just never seen tv before, and he was scared.  So I turned off the Wii and (after another endless session of figuring out how the home theatre system works,) turned on the TV. And what did Bentley do then?

Silence.

He sat and watched Frasier.  He sat and watched CNN.  He didn’t bark at anyone.  So I put Jillian back on. Barking?  You bet.

So I can’t exercise.  No matter that it’s 65 and sunny outside. I wanted to do Jillian’s indoor workout today, and since Bentley won’t let me, I’ll just have go to eat something instead!

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reply_card [Converted]I met Jillian Michaels about ten days ago at a publicity event run by my friends at Role Mommy.  She was talking about  her newest Wii Fit game, Jillian Michaels Fitness Ultimatum 2010. (coming out Tuesday on Wii and at the end of the month for DSi.)

She was funny, charming, and so incredibly rrrrrripped  — you could bounce a ten pound weight off her abdomen.

You can read all about my visit with her here.

Plus, right here on this site, you can enter to win Jillian’s very own Quick Start Rapid Weight Loss System, plus a free week of weight loss tips and support from JillianWeightloss.com.

Jillian’s Quick Start system contains two bottles of her special formulations: Maximum Strenght Calorie Control™, and Maximum Strength Fat Burner™.  She swears that taking four capsules a day will jump start your weight loss and make it easier to meet your weight loss goals.

Wanna win? (or should that be lose?)

Leave a comment below telling me what you love about Jillian, and what you DON”T love about dieting, and I’ll pick a winner at random using random.org.

Now for the Fine Print:

Contest open to US residents only.  Must be 18 or older to enter. Don’t forget to leave your email address (no one will see it but me.) Contests ends 9pm, Friday, October 9th.

Good luck!

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twitter-logotwitter-birdsI got up this morning and got dressed to go to the gym.

But am I at the gym?

Nope.  I’m Twittering and emailing, and blogging, and reading some of the blogs that I like.

But I am wearing exercise clothing — which must count for something. (Doesn’t intent burn calories?)  I am moving my fingers at astonishing speeds. (Thank you Mr. Henry, my tenth grade typing teacher.) I must be losing weight, just by using Twitter.

Let me count the ways:

1. The outfit. (LuLu Lemon, I love you for making my butt look small.)

2. The finger speed (see above)

3. Twittering is like having a big long disjointed conversation with a whole lot of people you don’t really know.  It can be exhausting. Exhaustion means you’re burning calories, right?

4. When I Twitter, I think about all of the other things I should be doing.  I imagine myself exercising instead, for example. Imagination is SO SO powerful.  Aren’t we always telling out kids that?  Something that powerful MUST count as exercise. I mean, really.

5. Also, When I Tweet (oh, I SO know the lingo, don’t I?) I occasionally get up from my desk, walk to the kitchen, open up the pantry door, and grab a snack. And if that doesn’t burn calories, well, what does?

So for all you Tweets (Tweople?) out there who think that sitting at a desk, typing on your laptop, and chatting with your virtual friends all day might not be the best choice for your (literal) bottom line….take heart! You’re Twittercizing! Feel the burn.

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OK, OK, so I’ve been on the diet for four weeks and this is only the second time I’ve updated.

I’ll give you the scoop:

Week One: Followed the points TO THE LETTER (number?) No cheats.  No counting the exercise points.

Down 1.4

Week Two: Same as week one.  Only used a few of my discretionary points

No loss/No gain

Week Three: Total disregard for the entire thing

Down 1

Week Four: Paid attention: sort of.   Went out to one big restaurant (read: buttery) meal. Never wrote down anything

Down 1

SO – it doesn’t seem to matter what I do.  If I follow the diet, I lose a pound.  If I don’t, I lose a pound. Maybe it’s kinda like wearing exercise clothes all day:  you might not have made it to the gym, but don’t you still get credit for looking like you did?

I don’t get it.  But I don’t care: Down 3.4 in four weeks.  Not exactly stellar, but I’ll take it.

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Weight Watchers.

The two most terrifying words in the English language.  (Though I suppose that “Compassionate Conservative” and “Hairy Back” might be contenders.)

And yet here I am, once again, doing the WW.  Counting the points, weighing the portions,trying to decide if a deck of cards (the proper size of a serving a meat) is the same size as the giant hunk of leg-o-lamb I’ve just plunked on my plate. (that would be NO.)

Full disclosure:  a publicist from WW gave me three months of Weight Watchers for free.  I figured that if I can’t follow the program and lose the weight when I don’t even have to pay for it….Well, then I might as well  just accept that “trying on bathing suits” will forever remain the four scariest words in the English language.

Today was my second weigh-in.  Week two.  Week one, I lost 1.4 pounds.  Not bad.  Not great, but not bad.  So week two, I decided to be extra careful: I weighed everything.  I wrote everything down.  And you know what?  I stayed the same.  EXACTLY the same.

It’s better than a gain, I know.  But still.  And this was a week where I skied, worked out with a trainer, took yoga, took a dance class, took a ballroom dancing lesson AND dieted. What else am I supposed to do?  Cut off my left arm from the elbow down and use it to beat the pounds off of me?

It was also a week where I went out to breakfast with a friend.  Here’s what I had: one poached egg (2 points) and one piece of dry whole wheat toast (2 points).  Here’s what she had: a three egg (one yolk only) mozzarella and tomato omelette , french fries, and two pieces of whole wheat toast slattered in butter.

Now, here’s what she looks like: five foot four, one hundred and ten pounds, size four or six.

And here’s what I look like: five foot seven, NOWHERE NEAR one hundred and ten, or even one hundred and twenty, and lets face it, it’s been 20 years since I’ve seen 130 pounds.  Size eight or ten.

Sometimes, life just isn’t fair, is it?

Straight after my weigh-in, I went to Loehmann’s to  – TRY ON BATHING SUITS.  I figured, hey, I’m already depressed about my body, why not go all out and make myself downright dismal???

I had already been to the world famous Town Shop last week, trying on Karla Coletto suits, and that hadn’t gone well.  I have sung the praises of her bathing suits before, but this time around.  Well, let’s just say it didn’t go as well.  The bathing suits are still beautiful.  Still fabulously designed.  I will admit, I look better in a Karla Coletto bathing suit than I have a right to. BUT (and it’s a big but – not to be confused with my big butt), this year, the suits were see-through.  I’m pretty sure it wasn’t intentional – but they were showing a whole lot more than I feel comfortable showing.  (Or that you’d feel comfortable seeing, believe me.) For $200 and up, I expect a fabric that at least doesn’t show my (theoretical) tan lines through my suit. Or, let’s be frank, the depth of my bikini wax. So no Karla Coletto for me this year.  I’m looking on the bright side: this way, I won’t be tempted to spend $200 plus on a bathing suit!

ANYWAY – so there I was in Loehmann’s, and  as I entered the (communal) dressing room, I see my naturally (and preternaturally) thin friend, J.  (And as you read, remember, she’s a FRIEND) She takes one look at my armful of bathing suits (size 8′s, I might add – it’s not like I was kidding myself) and says “Are you going to fit into those?”

Youch.

I suppose the proper response would have been: “Are you going incredibly mean, incredibly unfeeling, or just a bitch?”  Or maybe “Are you going to go through puberty ever?  And get breasts?”  But no, all I said was:  “Well, I’m on Weight Watchers.”

All I can say is, it better work.

So check in every Wednesday for a Weight Watchers update. I let you know if I’m up or down, and I’ll tell you what’s working and what’s not.  Hey, maybe it’ll keep me honest, and finally, finally, get me to lose those ten pounds I’ve been struggling with for the past twenty years!

If you have any great Weight Watchers knowledge to impart – well, let me know.  Evidently, I need all the help I can get.

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wii-music-1You know the kid who was always picked last for teams in gym class?  Or at least last of the not-totally-loser kids?  Did you ever wonder what happened to that kid?

Did she grow up to be a world-class athlete?  Did she channel her athletic frustrations into intellectual pursuits and become a famous professor, writer, world leader or software developer?  Or, did she never manage to get over  the frustration of being a bad athlete and turn into a serial killer, a sadistic torturer of small animals, the kind of woman who insists on asking every man she dates “Do I look like I’ve gained a few?  No really.  Do I?” 

I’ll tell you what happened to her.  She became the kind of person who still sucks at sports.  Even the electronic ones.  She understands the angst of the woman told by her Wii Fit that she’s fat.  She knows the pain of missing out on perhaps the biggest electronic fad of our time, The Wii, simply because she still, to this day, cannot hit even a virtual ball.

She is me.  I am she.  Let the gods of hand-eye coordination spite me down and make me do pushups while I’m there. (more…)

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