D-E Day

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Here's a mish-mash of a post for you.  Before I get to what D-E Day means, I wanted to share something with you.  I've been following a blog called fourwhitepaws.  It's written by a guy who lives just to the north of me in the Seattle area.  He has taken a feral cat under his wing and built the most amazing little shelters for Oliver, the cat.

Oliver didn't have a name at first...he was known simply as BK, or Black Kitty.  Then The Cat Guy decided to make a little outdoor home for Oliver.  You can see Oliver's history and a slide show of his outdoor home right here.  But this is what caught my attention on the blog the other day.  The Cat Guy has generously granted me permission to repost these images from his blog.

It seems some friends knitted a new Oliver for The Cat Guy and his cat buddy.

Here's a picture of Oliver meeting his new friend.

And it looks like he's happy with his new toy.

Is this precious, or what?  You know I love a good cat story.  

I'm not a knitter, but this is almost enough to make me want to take it up.  The pattern came from a book called Knit Your Own Cat:  Easy-to-Follow Patterns for 16 Frisky Felines.  Tempting, isn't it?  I learned to knit once, but I wasn't very good at it.  I wonder how easy it is to do one of these.

So now on with the rest of the mish mash.  I've designated October 1, 2012, as D-E Day.  That stands for:

D = Diet

E = Exercise

So, here's my story, and I'm sticking to it.  I have been a life-long exerciser.  When I was seven, I started competitive swimming, and I've been a swimmer my whole life.  At times, I've added or substituted running, just for a change, and weight-lifting caught my fancy for a while.  About 10 years ago, I worked out with a trainer for a three-year period.  It was well worth the expense, and I learned a lot from him.  Also, I turned 50, and my body started falling apart.  My shoulders were shot.  Then it turned out my knee was shot.  Then my neck went wacky, followed by carpal tunnel syndrome in both hands.  (Let me tell you, the carpal tunnel was excruciating.)  In a period of four years, I had six surgeries, all of them necessary.  

The problem with so many surgeries in a short period of time is that one's brain can become over active in sending pain messages to one's many boo-boos.  I ended up with a chronic pain syndrome that really had no other explanation.  My commitment to exercise continued, but eventually, I had to call it quits.

That was about two years ago.  Around the time I started this blog.  My good habits kept weight gain at bay for a good long time, but in the past six months, my weight has been creeping in the wrong direction, slow but sure.  Also, I knew without exercise I would eventually experience the kind of back pain that comes with inactivity and a flabby core.  Check.  Morning back pain ahoy.

Now here's why October 1 has been designated my personal D-E Day:  My chronic pain syndrome has resolved.  I still have pain in my right knee, both feet, and my right hand and wrist.  Yes, it's a bummer.  It's going to be my bug-a-boo as I grow older, and that's just the sad truth of it.  Nevertheless, I know I will feel better if I exercise.  Also, my knee will thank me for a few less pounds to carry around.  I told myself I was going to go back to exercising in earnest when we returned from our trip.  Also, I told myself I would start dieting the same day.  Then, we got back from the trip and I stepped on the scale and was positively shocked(!) by the number that appeared.  

It was so shocking that I stepped off the scale and stepped back on, thinking it would somehow be different if I just tried it again.  It was not, and I did go a little crazy.

So I started my diet that very day.  I'm happy to say that some of my shocking weight gain was retained fluid...a problem I have when the weather gets warm, and so some of that weight came off pretty quickly.  Nevertheless, I really want to lose about 30 pounds (and that's including the retained fluid that is gone already).  I'm not going to tell you the poundage where I'm starting, but I've decided to post one of those little weight trackers.  You can see it up there under my profile picture.  I think it will keep me honest.  Honesty (with myself) is hard when I'm trying to lose weight.  I'm not terrifically heavy, just heavier than I want to be, and the trend is definitely in the wrong direction.

Also, I really need to get back into exercise, which will help me feel better.  It will also help with my weight loss goal.  I've committed to returning to exercise more times than I can count.  So far, I've been unsuccessful.  And so I'm setting a personal challenge for myself that way too.  I was dumb and overscheduled myself this week, and so I'm not going to get off to a very good start.  Still, it might help to return gradually, and so I have as my goal to walk twice this week.  That should be easy.  Next week, I'm going to walk twice and add in one day of swimming.  The following week, I'll add an additional day of swimming.  That will be two days walking, and two days swimming every week.  A good goal.  Wish me luck.

Now what about some fun stuff?  I did a little sewing yesterday.  I finished a swap block for my partner in the Block Swap Adventure.


My partner asked for a Depression Block.  She told me I could surprise her with the colors.  This is what I came up with:

I'll mail that off to her tomorrow.  After my walk today, I'm going to get started on the last of the Blogger's BOM blocks, and then I think I might start on that Folk Art Cats quilt I'm wanting to start for my October NewFO.

But now, it's time to follow through on the commitment I made to myself and get out for a walk.  

How's your first day of October going?

15 comments from clever and witty friends:

SewCalGal said...

What a fun post. Love the story on the cat and seeing the cute kitty toy.

Your D-E Day is inspirational. Great way to give yourself a great gift that only you can do. I'm confident you can do it and thanks for encouraging me to work on it too!


Lyndsey said...

I love the cat story and the knitted kitty almost had me rushing for the knitting needles. I say almost because my knitting bits are upstairs and by 9 pm my knees hurt as I too am a little over weight and don't get as much exercise as I should.

I am sure you will achieve your goals Barbara so good luck. I will be joining you as I could do with losing 20 pounds and both myself and our dog would benefit from more exercise.

Denise :) said...

Cute, cute kitty cat! Both the rl one and the yarn one! Good for you on your determination, too!!! Chronic pain is NO fun. I'm really sorry that's something that you have to deal with. :)

gpc said...

Your block is gorgeous! And I love the kitty. Good for you on the DE, I need a little inspiration in that area!

Scooquilt said...

Thank you for the great cat pictures! I so sympathize with your weight problem/goals. Congratulations for taking action. The turning 50 thing is so huge. I have never been an exerciser, but I did just enroll in a yoga class, with feels interesting. About :o embark on a 3 week car trip, which I know will spell disaster, but intend to try. Good luck to us both.

Kathy Felsted Usher said...

The knitted cat is great! Such nice people to knit the cat a buddy!

Teresa in Music City said...

Knit your own cat! Wow! When will they help me knit my own pool boy? Well, I suppose they need to help me knit my own pool first, wouldn't they? LOL!!! In all seriousness, that's a truly cute knitted cat, and it seems that Oliver thinks so too, which is the final word of course! I think Oliver needs one of those, don't you?

Don't even get me started on D-E... I can't even type the words! I need to join you in this so badly, but I am a bad girl when it comes to stuff like that! I put off exercise and I've never learned how to diet because I never needed to until I turned 40 and quit smoking! But I have begun walking and hope to add some gym work in the next few months. You're going to put me to shame with your results I'm sure :*)

Junebug613 said...

Wishing you the best of luck with your healthy ambitions. I too need to work on my self discipline with in both areas. Maybe reading your progress will help inspire me! I love the story of Oliver! I am a knitter (on occasion). Maybe I'll see if I can make one of those cats! (as if I need another newfo amongst all the ufos!!!)

Harriett said...

I set today as D-E day too. So far so good. Love Oliver he reminds me of cats from my childhood .

quiltzyx said...

That is a cool knitty kitty! Oliver is one lucky feline, isn't he? I have tried to knit, but it isn't for me. I do crochet & have crocheted cats, daschunds (sp?) & a couple mice. I like to crochet, but have been told that I crochet backwards - what the heck? It works for me!

Good luck with your D-E project!!

Dana Gaffney said...

Did you just throw down the gauntlet? What about ice cream? I'm going to look for the knitting book and give it to my daughter who knits, maybe I can get some cats out of her.♪ ♫ ♥

Snoodles said...

Oh, how cute! And how timely, since my sis is handing off all of her yarn to me....(maniacal laughter trailing off into the silence) LOL
Hey, I am right there with you on the treadmill, bad knees and all. You can do it if I can - I'm chained to my desk all day, but in the last two months I have dropped 14 pounds. Whew! We'll keep each other straight, OK? :)

Diane Wild said...

May I suggest reading the book "Wheat Belly" by Dr. William Davis. I have stopped eating food that contain wheat..mostly bread, cake, cookies, crackers, pasta..and dropped 8 lbs in two months. So easy to do. Did not crave the sweets like I imagined I would. Just a thought but seriously, read the book. Quite an eye-opener.

Lee said...

(My comments reflect both your 10/1 & 10/2 posts). I cracked up when I saw that one picture of Smitty - too too funny and so *stressed* out, hah! D-E - here I was thinking along the lines of D-Day/Veteran's Day - drawing a blank, so Diet & Exercise, oh my. It's an encouragement to do something about my own weight gain, and I have more to lose than you! And being like that cartoon of the lady with crutches (ME! for the last 6.5 weeks) I've been really afraid I'd gain 10 more pounds as I seem to gain in 10#increments when I do gain. Yep, time to reverse this process.

Nita said...

I can really relate to the diet and exercise thing. Maybe I should jump on your bandwagon with you. I lost 60 pounds two years ago. Then last winter I got ill (depression) and stopped exercising & eating right. I have gained 15 of my hard lost pounds back. I think I will do a blog post (inspired by you) and see what little changes I can make to get back on the right track. Happy walking!