Monday, August 14, 2006

Summer busy-ness

We’ve been busy. Not with knitting so much, but busy. I finally got out the scary hedge clipping power tool and got the bushes looking like the house is inhabited. Voila!

I do love power tools. I worry constantly with this one that I’m going to cut through the power cord. I used to use the manual clipping shears out of sheer terror about slicing up a child or my leg or the house. Unfortunately, doing it that way takes all day long. So take that, you hedges, you! have at you! ha! ha! and ha!

Youngest child has been reading a lot of Garfield (shudder), so he began asking me to make lasagna a couple of weeks ago. Today, we had lasagna.

We discovered that little guy does not, in point of fact, like lasagna. Not as such. Ah, well; dh and oldest child did. I did, too, but as the children remind me, I eat calamari and my opinions on food are therefore utterly worthless.

I took the dog for a brief walk before the kids were up this morning, and a longer one after lunch. This has the dual purpose of exercising the dog and exercising me. I’ve been taking a little guidance from The Hacker's Diet: eat fewer calories than you burn (it's subitled, "How to lose weight and hair through stress and poor nutrition"). Also exercise, even if it’s only the most miniscule amount. So I started doing situps and such. The Hacker Diet acknowledges that an exercise program (shudder) that takes too long isn’t going to get done. There’s a list of things to do; you do some. You try and pay attention to eating fewer calories than you burn. Who cares what, exactly, the calories come from? If it’s 2000 calories’ worth of Cheetos and Jolt, fine; just stop eating when you’re supposed to. And do a couple of situps. My kinda diet, I'm telling you.

We’ve also been watching The Dog Whisperer, which is fun. The notion (among other things) is that dogs need to exercise and they need to settle into following their pack leader; hence the walk. Walks. Daisy (the dog) has been having a spiffy time following me nicely, beside or just behind me. At the moment, she’s totally pooped.


Blogger Carole said...

Eating less calories than you burn, eh? Now why couldn't I think of that? ;-)

8:36 AM  
Blogger Julie said...

We are Dog Whisperer addicts in our house. Not that we own a dog mind you, we just find him so very entertaining. The doggie backpacks are just too funny and the doggies on the treadmill? Tee hee. On vacation we even corrupted my SIL (who does indeed have a dog) into watching a little DW. What's worse, Jason tries to use the "shhhht" on the cats and the looks they give him are very amusing.

8:57 AM  
Blogger Ruth said...

I completely LOVE the Dog Whisperer. The part that always gets me is when he has to remind the owners that their dogs are, actually, DOGS, not people, and need to be treated as such. And that they're happier and more secure when they know what the pack rules are.

3:47 PM  
Blogger Matt Griffith said...

Most of my kids hate lasagna but love calamari. Go figure.

Exercise is one area where I disagree with John Walker in The Hacker's Diet. He talks about exercise as a chore and a waste of time. He is right that you won't stick with anything that feels like a chore. But exercise doesn't have to be a chore. Walking your dog is a good example. It can become something you look forward to. Something you crave.

My wife and I ride our bikes together. It gives us a chance to spend some time together and it is something we look forward to. And it happens to be great exercise too. Some nights we ride for 1 1/2 hours and I burn as many as 1200 calories. But it isn't something I have to talk myself into. It is something that I crave.

Vigorous exercise can also be a great stress reliever. But that is hard to imagine until you do it for a while and feel the effects for yourself.

It is hard not to buy into John's idea that exercise is a waste of time especially if that matches your experience with trying to integrate exercise in your life. I think we could learn from The Dog Whisperer in this regard. He is successful with dogs because he looks at the world through their eyes. If we step back and look at why we overeat and don't exercise in a similar way we find that it is usually because it feels good. And we usually associate pain with changing those habits. If we find a way to associate pain with continuing to overeat and with not exercising it will be much easier to make a lifelong positive change. There are plenty of ways to integrate fun family activities into your life that also happen to be great exercise.

You can use the to track your progress on The Hacker's Diet. It is free.

Good luck.

Matt Griffith

12:06 PM  

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