Monday, November 07, 2011

Happy November....where did the last few months go.
Lets see we carved pumpkins and went Steampunk equse for Halloween, had foster pups, went to LA for a awesome concert 'The National' at the Hollywood Bowl. It's been a pretty good time all round.
Steampunk ish.....

These are our current set of fosters. They are boxer mixed with toad. There are 13 in the litter, all but one is tan, and it looks like a little Rottweiler. They were handed in to the Humane Society, who promptly called us as we have better facilities to deal with them. They are all in foster for the next few weeks.
The toadlings

We got 6 inches of snow the other night, and it's thinking about snowing right now. All very pretty but probably will be gone in a week unless we get another storm.

I've been going to a Crossfit gym (they are everywhere) since the start of the year. It was on and off for the first half though. I got sick, went to Australia, got sick again, so I only have been regular about going since August, and now I'm there 3-4 times a week. I'm really enjoying it. It's totally different from normal gyms, which really helps the motivation. It's expensive but you basically have a personal trainer each session. When I was sick, a couple of the trainers emailed and texted me asking if I was ok as they hadn't seen me for a bit, which was really nice and makes you feel like part of a heavily buffed community. Every day there is a workout which everyone does, scaled for weight and ability. You learn proper weightlifting techniques, gymnastics and how to move correctly and safely. Grunting and dropping weights are encouraged. You learn how to drop weights in a safe way so not to break yourself or anyway else.
When I'm at work I feel pretty strong, can lug around dogs and food without much effort, when I'm at Crossfit not so much. It's not a race or a competition with the others, but still you compare yourself whether you should or not. It's silly cause a lot of the women have been doing this for yonks and are freaking amazing, and so little old me is not even in the same day though.
For the last two months they ran a nutritional challenge. (the rules are here if ya interested) It was $100 buy in with a chance to win your money back and some prizes. All food was logged and you got the most points with the paleo/zone combo. I got enough points to get $75 back, lost a few kilos and didn't miss the grains. Both the zone and paleo diets are pretty sensible for the most part, I don't buy into the whole paleo thing of absolutely no grain, rice, pasta and cereals....I don't think they are the scourge of civilization, and like anything in moderation they are fine. Just to see I didn't eat them for two months, except for rice once and some bread...damn Rob and his baguette making weekends.
Considering how much we used rice and pasta for our dinners, cutting them out wasn't that hard and I have to say I didn't miss or crave them. I will start eating them again, but probably not as much as before. Big thanks to Rob, as usual was wonderful, helped me zone my meat and veges and didn't tempt me (much) with point losing noms.
The other part of it was doing two workouts at the beginning and end and see the improvement.
One was 'Cindy' which is 'as many rounds as possible' (amrap) in 20 minutes of 5 pullups, 10 pushups, 15 squats. I can't do pullups yet so I did jumping pull ups and pushups on my knees.
The first time I did 13 rounds, 5 pullups and 8 pushups to fail. My noodley arms could not do another pushup to save myself. I did it again on Thursday and did 18 rounds, and as tired as I was I could have done more. Sometimes it's hard to see any progression, but that showed me that I have gotten stronger and fitter which is the whole point, it's nice to see.
Crossfit Total is three weightlifting movements- back squats, shoulder press and deadlift. You have three attempts increasing the weight each time and you record the highest poundage for each lift and that's your total. I just did it this morning and increased my weight on each. 105lb on back squats, 59lb on shoulder press and 182lbs on the deadlift making my total 346. Again trying not to look at the woman next to me deadlifting 250lb....I'll get there.

All in all it's a good thing and I do feel better overall.
White Horse slab box, pre fired and cracked.

It hasn't been all grunties.
I've been doing a Cultural Anthropology and Ceramics class at Coconino Community Collage. Both are really interesting and making stuff out of clay is always fun. We started out with pinch pots, a slab box and a coil pot and now learning the basics of the wheel. Also mucking about with different glazes is pretty cool and you never quite know how it will turn out. I'm thinking of re doing the class next semester to get better at the basics. My slab box I carved the White Horse of Uffington on it. It cracked in the kiln so we patched it up and I'm hoping it will hold. I can always make another.

Raku glazed pinch pots