Personal Post 1

I started back at school last week at Metro State and so far so good. Its nice to have time out of the house on my own. Doing something for myself that isn’t related to the house, child or hubby. Funny thing is the night before classes start I finally received my Associates Diploma from CNM.

One of the added benefits of going to school is the access to a pool and gym. Since Omar is able to be homes on Friday w the LO while I’m at school I am able to spend time working out. Something I really need.

One of the things I have found w being back in a regular classroom is I no longet have any trepidation speaking up in a classroom. I mean I don’t have full confidence in my intelligence but I’m not really concerned about what I say. So different then years ago doing everything I can to sit in the back of the class hoping I won’t be noticed by anyone let aline the teacher.

So here is to a good year of learning and opening not just my mind but myself to whats out there.

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Workouts 7-4-09 to 7-11-09

You may of noticed I didn’t post workouts last week and there is a reason for that – I took a week off from working out. I was stressed and my body just wasn’t working like it should and when I would go to the gym I would just be blah… I did workout for part of the last full week of June but I didn’t record it because of my mind set. In truth, the break did me well. I gave myself the ability to not worry about counting calories and could just breathe and relax. I was able to just restart and jumpstart my body again. By the time I started back on the 4th of July, I was ready and my mind was back into the game as well as my diet.

While I did gain weight from eating poorly… It is now coming back off. I redid my calorie intake guide for each day and reduced it around 100 more calories to 1880 per day. So far so good. I am determined to eat cleaner as well, as much as I can afford to because well – little cashes and fresh foods are NOT cheap. I am almost back to my lowest weight.

With my workouts – I have decided to keep working out 5 days a week but I am going to be limiting my workouts to 1hour – 1hour 30mins at the most. There may be one day every few weeks where I will do one of my 2 hour workouts but for the majority of the time, it will be the shorter workouts. This will give me a true workout and also allow me to not stress over taking time away from everything else going on. This is essential to my mind set since I am getting prepared for the fall semester at school and will be taking 3 classes. Not an easy task but I have figured out that if I want to get my associates within a reasonable time I will have to take 3 – 4 classes a semester and I will graduate in about 2 years time. Luckily, if I pass these current classes – my science requirements will be over with and then I just have to deal with the math. Once that is done, I should be good. I will post my classes once I get signed up and everything.

Okay – this past weeks workouts (my workout weeks will be from Saturdays to Friday, since I started back on Saturday – the day I declared my indepence from fat – get the 4th humor?! ha!)

7-4-09, Saturday

Warm Up
15m – Elliptical Crossramp, Crosstraining, Level 7

Workout

10 – walking planks

Bicep Curls w/ ez bar – super set with triceps
12 @ 25#
10 @ 35#
8 @ 45#
10 @ 35#
12 @ 25#

Tricep Pushdown w/ v-bar
12 @ 30#
10 @ 40#
8 @ 50#
10 @ 40#
12 @ 30#

5 – walking planks

6m – Stair stepper, Weight Loss Program Level 5. 1m straight, 1m left, 1m right

3 x 10 @ 15# (each arm) – Hammer Strength ISO Shoulder Press
3 x 10 @ 10# + bar – bench press

6m – elliptical, glute trainer, level 8 (3m forward peddle, 3m backward peddle)

2 rounds of:
10 @ 6# medicine ball – Jackknives
10 – Ab Wipers on the floor
10 @ 6# medicine ball – Back Extensions w/ twist

Cool Down
15m – Stationary Bike, Hills, Level 5

Est. Cal Burn: 1020
Est. Time: 1h 20m

7-5-09, Sunday

Warm Up
15m – Elliptical, Level 4, Weight Loss Segment

Circuit

4 rounds: (about 1m break in between rounds to cool down, the humidity was insane today and my inhaler ran out)

10 @ 22lb barbell – Sumo Squat w/ one leg on step (5″ high) Left Leg
10 @ 22lb barbell – Sumo Squat w/ one leg on step (5″ high) Right Leg

10 @ 22lb barbell – Step Up w/ Kick Back, Left Leg (on a 18″ step)
10 @ 22lb barbell – Step Up w/ Kick Back, Right Leg (on a 18″ step)

1 Length – Walking Lunges, about 6 or 7 yards

30sec – Wall Sits

10 @ 22lb barbell – Deadlifts

10 @ 8lb Med Ball – Wood Cutter w/ squat (started in squat, stood and went to the left with moving the ball above my head w/ straight arms. Back Down to the squat and then back up to the right – this was 1 rep)

10 – Plyo Side Skip over 1 level of a stair step. (one skip over and back to start was 1 rep)

Ab Work

3 rounds (no breaks in between rounds)

20 – Leg Pull Ins (sat on the step up step and leaned back at a 45 deg angle and pulled my legs in to my chest)
15 sec – flutter kicks, laying on the step up step)

Time: 1h 15m
Est. Cal Burn: 954

7-6-09, Monday

Rest Day

7-7-09, Tuesday

Warm Up
10m – Elliptical Cross Ramp, Crosstraining, Level 5
5m – Stretching

Workout

4 rounds of the following – no breaks
1m – Side lunges with one leg on step box with Walk Over
1m – Regular Lunges
20 @ 15# – Dumbbell Swing
15 @ 2 15# dumbbells – Chest Press
1m – Row Machine

Cool Down
5m – Stretching

Est. Time 1h 5-10m
Est. Cal Burn 803

7-8-09, Wednesday

20m – Treadmill, Intervalls, Incline 3, 2m walk – 3.0, 1m jog – 5.0 (186 cals)

3 rounds
12 @ 35# – Squat w/ row
10 – chin ups, counterweighted at 180#
10 – dips, counterweighted at 180#

15m – elliptical cross ramp, glute trainer, resistance 7 (175c)
5m – elliptical cross ramp, cool down, resistance 4 (50.5c)

5m – stretching

Est. Time 1 hour
Est. Cal Burn 621.5

7-9-09, Thursday

13m – Elliptical Crossramp, Weight Loss Program, Resistance Level 6

3 rounds:
20 @ 8# dumbbells – lat raises
15 @ 8# dumbbells – tricep kickbacks

2m – row machine

Abs
20 – crunches
3 x 20 – v crunches
10 – v crunches
5 – 10sec planks
2 – 30sec planks

10m – elliptical, fat loss program, level 4

17m – treadmill, intervals, level 5

Est. Cal Burn: 620
Est. Time: 1 hour 5 mins

7-10-09, Friday

Rest Day

too much studying leads…

…to a very dull, stressed, crying Varza. That is right – I hate studying. Absolutely detest it with all my disgusting soul. Now, don’t get me wrong, I love school and learning new things but I hate the fact that I spent my last free weekend for a few months studying. I did go to dinner with a friend on Saturday night but couldn’t think of anything to talk about beyond my damned class. And on Sunday morning I was stressed from being up late Saturday night that when I went out with another friend to a movie and lunch I was in such a damned mood we got into a bit of a tiff. Course, in that situation I wasn’t the only one in a mood… so I can’t blame all that on my Anatomy class but I will because I can.

I think the main reason I do not like studying a lot is because its generally for classes that I suck in. And when I say suck, I mean big time. I actually sat in my class last Thursday starring at the teacher as he spoke with my mouth open and completely and utterly lost. Well, and I was trying not to fall asleep. I do that a lot when it comes to science classes that are not interactive. My mom had recommended I just sit and listen, I tried only to find myself fighting very hard to keep my eyes open for a majority of the class.

At least the quiz we had last week, I did better on then the first one. I got a 23 out of 30. Still got seven wrong but it wasn’t 9 wrong! ha! Like it really matters. I will spend another evening tonight, working on lab homework and studying/reading until I pass out from boredom.

This is a big hill in my journey – mainly because its a struggle and something in the past I would normally just walk away from because I hate feeling stupid and this lecture and lab make me feel like my IQ is actually a 27 instead of a 127 or is it 128? I can’t remember, I know when I am tired its 119 but whatever. Time to get back to work so I can finish up here then head to the gym for a few hours then home to study, eat, sleep, wake up and head back to the gym then study group and then class again.

Then add in the fact that I can not relax enough to truly enjoy reading a fun book, that I read and then get bored because the last thing I want to do is read another printed word… its sad really, I mean my life is books pretty much and I can’t find enjoyment in it. This class is destroying that!  I don’t even want to go into my lack of ability to write one creative word beyond “it was a dark and stormy night” and “a long time ago”. Ugh… breathe, varza, breathe! Only 9 more weeks and then it is over!

Damned my life is boring as hell! Next semester I am taking that damned film as literature class and western civ II. MUCH more interesting!

Time to Figure It Out Part 2!

I told you I would be back to finish that last part of this adventure. If you need to reread or read for the first time, Part one go here: Time to Figure It Out Part 1.

Okay, when we last left off I rushed through what I thought I should major in. Since then I have had some deep discussions with my mom. She too didn’t go to college until she was in her 20s and 30s, mainly cause of raising kids and having to work to help support the household. My mom had some interesting thoughts on what I should major in but her main point was to just get a degree in something, and preferably something that wasn’t too specific. That if I go for a very specific degree it would be harder to find a job in just anything. Whereas a degree in just English or liberal arts would give me a degree and the ability for a wider range of positions. For example, I could go for a psychology degree, but in truth unless I am willing to go further in my education then a bachelors it is basically worthless.

She also stated that, this is what minors are for. I could major in English and minor in something else. This would give me a focus but not too specific a focus. Is she right? Probably but the real question is if it is right for me. I have no clue but I do know that my mom is speaking from experience. It took her over a decade to final graduate from college in her 40s. She went for an teaching degree… now she loved teaching but hated the politics of the administration in the education system today. So, now she has a teaching degree which isn’t really good for much beyond teaching.

I look at my brother, he went for a history degree with a teaching degree attached to it. He is stuck working in retail. I look at my friends who majored in psychology – one can’t find a job because that degree means nothing without, like I said, another degree attached to it; the other works for the government in a job that needs no degree for people to do. Another friend with a journalism degree who works at a gym for just about minimum wage. And the stories go on and on and on…

So, does the major really matter? And in that case, if I do this I can only be sure that it does not guarantee me a job in career just because I have a piece of paper. I have to really look to the outside of just the degree and find out – what do I want to study for 2 – 3 years and where would I like to go to school.

I have been looking and asking for information on some schools and found that not all of them have departments for all the different majors. Such as the University of Pittsburgh, a school I wanted to attend most of my childhood, does not have a journalism school. So, if I want to move back to Pittsburgh at all – I could not major in journalism. Not that really matters, there are plenty of schools that have a journalism department in different parts of the country.

I have stated before that I am looking at possibly moving out of New Mexico to another part of the country, preferably to the east coast. In my search for university and colleges I started to look overseas to the UK. One of my dreams since I was a kid was to live somewhere on the British Isles for a few years. This is a possibility for me to do with finishing up my final years of school. I couple of the universities I came across are very open to international students of all ages and also give scholarships to help pay for your time there – including housing. Depending on my major – this is another possibility for me.

I am right now stuck on two majors: Journalism or English. Either one would be good but part of me wants to follow my mothers advice and go for the more general degree of English (most places don’t have a general lib. arts degree anymore at least that I can see) and possibly do two minors. One in journalism and another in business. The business would give me a back up. Or do a double major in English & Business w/ a minor in Journalism. Something on my paper that gives me something more concrete in the real world. Something that I could grow with and hopefully give me a boost up in the insanity that is life.

Maybe I did not find my exact major at this time but I do now at least have it narrowed down to a more specific region of study. I have come to realize that there are things, while I think they would be fascinating to do, are things that I would hate doing as a career. Now, I just need to figure out that last bit but I have awhile before I have to have it solid. I can spend the next year finalizing it and helping it come to fruition.

Soooo… its been a few weeks…

But, I am alive and somewhat well just hella busy with school, work and all that other crap that takes up like called: Darth Real Life. I have also been in kind of a funk. The stress of everything is getting to me and I have no real desire to do anything. Not even to count how the stress is affecting my diet… which is sucking the big one for the past few weeks. I am a stress eater… and I am lacking funds for healthy good foods so I am eating crap I shouldn’t be eating. And probably drinking too many protein shakes then are good for me.

I just want a week away from it all but my funds are so bad lately its really sad. My mortgage also went up and I am desperatly trying to find a way to refinance right now without any luck. I keep being told I have to come up with large down payments… if I had 5 grand in the bank do you really think I would need to refinance? Seriously… And its not my actual mortgage its the frakking property taxes that keep going up each year and upping my monthly payment. Right now I am paying almost 300 bucks a month into my escrow account that my mortgage company pays my taxes, insurance and all that other crap out of.

So, I will be hopefully making some more calls today and see if I can get into that program out there. I don’t regret buying my home. I love my home but I should of taken the 500 dollar loss and bought the townhouse I had been looking at. Smaller and was about 50 grand cheaper.

Just a tip for home buyers – your first year taxes are not permant rates. They will go up several hundred within a year or two. At least here in New Mexico. They didn’t tell me that when I bought my home, imagine my surprise when one month my payment was 800 and the next month 1,000. Not fun at all!

As for my diet and workout – I am stuck at anothe plateau and have been there for over a month now. I know part of it is my diet. part if my decreased cardio and part stress. I am tired of feeling defeated by trying to loose weight and not succeeding. I am still struggling over wanting to quit but I have to wait until when I get paid again but I need to quit “cheating” on my diet and just do it. In last months Oxygen there was an article on loosing 10lbs in a month. I think I am going to jumpstart my system with it starting next week after paying my bills. Its a hardcore diet and I will have to cut back majorily on my workouts so I don’t burn myself out. But with school ending in a few weeks, I think that the time I have to destress from classes before the next round is the best bet.

I need to do something I think and this is the only thing I can think of. Get rid of 10# and then go from there. This will also jumpstart me back onto the healthy regiment and hopefully get me off of the roller coaster of bad crap. And then afterwards I can start on the diet a friend gave me but we will see.

Speaking of school, only a few more weeks left. I have an A in my history class and a high C in my english class. I have a research paper due in both of them on Monday and I have been working on them. But probably not like I should be. Then again, I have always pressured myself to wait until the last minute on most of my papers. Always have… tried to change that and always start out early then meh. Just sit there staring at my moniter for hours on end.

But I just paid for the summer session with school, taking Anatomy & Physiology with a lab. Three days of classes. I was going to add on an algerbra class but decided against it. Its going to be hard enough especially since my nephew is in town again this summer. I will have to take it in the fall… I hate math with all my might. Seriously seriously hate it and wish I didn’t have to take it.

I did finally sign up for finanical aid for next year. Hopefully I will get it so I can have one less stress on my wallet. But I won’t know until the summer, I think. I haven’t heard anything from the school. Just the gov saying its been accepted and the info given to the school. They will let me know if I have been granted a grant. Wish me luck. I really need it. School is just too dang expensive – inexpensive but still. When you are living paycheck to paycheck… anything is alot on your budget.

AS for a major – still nothing. One of my friends said I should be a scholar and do religious/mythological studies. Since I already know a bunch and since I already read things then retell it in my own words – I am already being one. I find it funny… me a scholar? I barely graduated high school. But he thinks I would be really good with it. That I would be excellent at going around giving lectures and whatnot. Personally, I think it would be great but dang that would take me forever! But maybe… I will put it on the list.

I have had no time to even look for romance – incase you were wondering. I am trying to do the whole meet new people but everything costs money to do… and I save that for hanging out with people I already know. And I don’t get to do that often enough. I am starting to notice more and more guys around. Maybe my gym had a run of hot guys sign up at the gym – even though some of them have been around for awhile but I am just now noticing their cuteness since my crush has disappated.

So, I am keeping my eye open and making myself smile more if I see them smile at me, so we will see what happens. But I am pretty sure a guy was checking me out at the grocery store the other day… but hard to say… made eye contact a few times and he smiled. But then again – have had that happen before and it was just a guy being nice.

Okay, I think this is long enough… I will post my workouts from the past few weeks in the next day or so…

Also – I am on twitter… addicted to the damn thing I think: http://twitter.com/varza

Just Another Day

Its another Friday and as per usual I am stuck at work. Its been a crazy week… really really crazy week.

I got my last paper back from my teacher in my Analytical Writing class… 98. I really have no clue how I am getting these grades. I never got grades like this back in the day. I know I talk about it alot but I am surprised. I was an below average student. I graduated high school with barely a 2.5 gpa and my only college choice was the local community college. Which I did a semester in before quitting.

Lets see what else… my past week was stressful for health concerns. I found a lump in my breast last week – after waiting a few days before calling the doctors to make sure it wasn’t just a swollen gland. But luckily, after going to the docs and my first ever mammogram – I am clean and cancer free. What it is is a cystic fiber – something or another. Basically a bunch of fibers that formed a cyst that will go away with lack of caffeine. And I have been drinking a lot of caffeine lately – which helps make these little buggers. But I didn’t tell the world until now because I didn’t want to have to contact everyone and say – hey I found a lump and then a week later say – oh it was nothing but a stupid cyst. But in truth, its still scary. I was stressed to the max and my mom tried to console me but it doesn’t always help. I just wanted to know.

I sold my kilt – it had gotten to big for me… I am using some of the money to buy new t-shirts because most of mine are now also too big for me. I can wear a large now – its tight and fitted but I think it looks good. I don’t really know. Guess I will find out when I get it in. I mean, I can’t buy babydolls yet but I prefer the mens style shirts anyways. Oh and the rest is to pay bills off… I always have bills to pay off.

My workouts have been kinda blah… I took Monday and Thursday off and part of me does not want to go to the gym tonight but just go to the movies right after work instead. But I will go and do something. I have no idea what but I have to do something. I am down another lb this week though. So, yeah! But psychologically I am utterly beat and don’t want to think about anything. But if I go today I can take Sunday off…

With work, stress about school, trying to find money for school and everything else – I just need to escape. And even though I love my Sims 2 – its just not doing it right now. I recently started playing again just to get away from my real world and into a fake world where I can control everything and give my fake people lots and lots of fake mulla and build them big houses!

But I got notice that my day for class sign up for the summer is coming up. I figured out which classes I am going to take during the summer session – a science and lab. We will see if I get into the anatomy and physiology class like I want to. I do need to spend sometime this weekend appliying for finanical aid and hope to the gods that I actually get it. I am afraid I may make too much and they don’t take into account that I have a hellasious mortgage but as always, we will just have to see.

I have some other things I want to talk about but will do that another day… I need to eat lunch.

Workouts this week – as per usually the m stands for minutes, # for pounds:

3-21-09, Saturday

Warm Up
10m – Treadmill, Interval Inclines, 2.5mph

Toning
3 x 15 @ 40# – Rear Delt
3 x 15 @ 60# – Fly
3 x 15 @ 125/120/115 – Hip Abductions
3 x 15 @ 125/120/115 – Hip Adductions

Cardio
25m – Elliptical Crossramp, Glute Trainer, Resistance 8

3-22-09, Sunday

Warm Up
10m – Treadmill, 3.8mph, Intervals
Stretching

Round 1
10 @ 40# + bar – Smith Machine Squats
10 @ 10# + bar – Laying Chest Press (free weights)
10 @ 180# counterweight – Chin Ups
10 @ 10# dumbbells – should press
30 – crunches w/ legs on stability ball and bicycle move
5m – treadmill, random inclines, 4.0mph

Round 2
10 @ 40# + bar – Smith Machine Squats
10 @ 10# + bar – Laying Chest Press (free weights)
10 @ 180# counterweight – Chin Ups
10 @ 10# dumbbells – lat raises
25 – jack knifes w/ 6# medicine ball
5m – treadmill, rolling hills, 4.0mph

Round 3
10 @ 50# + bar – Smith Machine Squats
10 @ 10# + bar – Laying Chest Press (free weights)
10 @ 180# counterweight – Chin Ups
30 – crunches w/ legs on stability ball and bicycle move
5m – treadmill, random inclines, 4.0mph

Round 4
10 @ 50# + bar – Smith Machine Squats
10 @ 10# +bar – Laying Chest Press (free weights)
10 @ 180# counterweight – Chin Ups
10 @ 10# dumbbells – lat raises
25 – jack knifes w/ 6# medicine ball
5m – treadmill, random inclines, 4.0mph

Round 5
10 @ 50# + bar – Smith Machine Squats
10 @ 10# + bar – Laying Chest Press (free weights)
10 @ 180# counterweight – Chin Ups
10 @ 10# dumbbells – should press
30 – crunches w/ legs on stability ball and bicycle move
15m – treadmill, intervals inclines, 3.5mph

3-24-09, Tuesday

20m – Elliptical Crossramp, Intervals, Resistance 8
Stretching
1 x 15 @ 55# – Leg Extensions
3 x 15 @ 55# – Leg Curls
3 x 15 @ 80# – Calf Machine
10m – Elliptical, Hill Intervals

yeah I know its really short but oh well, it was a long day. I had to go for some testing early yesturday morning and I was just beat.  This was the day I went for the mam.

3-25-09, Wednesday

Warm Up
10m – Treadmill, 3.5mph, Incline 5
Stretching

Workout
4 x 10 @ 60# – Smith Squats
4 x 12 @ bar only – underhanded row – freeweights
4 x 12 @ 10# weights – lat raises
1 x 15 @ 190# counterweight – chin ups
3 x 10 @ 190# counterweight – chin ups
4 x 12 @ 15# dumbbells – stability ball chest press
4 x 10 @ 20# barbell – curls
4 x 20 sec – curls
10 sec rest between each 20sec rep
4 x 20 sec – reverse crunches
10 sec rest between each 20sec rep

It Almost Made Me Cry

Okay, I had something happen to me earlier this week that almost made me cry… but it defiantly made me extremely sad.

In my English class we were discussing the story “Rip Van Winkle” and the teacher separated us into groups to break down the story and the group I got was Setting. Why was Rip Van Winkle set where it was, when it was and why? Easy right… Ha!

We started with when Rip Van Winkle was set and we knew that he basically slept thru the beginning of the Revolutionary War. So, I figured it would be easy to answer that. He woke up at the beginning and he was asleep for 20 years. The first question asked “When was the revolutionary war?” I was a bit stunned but more when someone else answer – 1825 right? Um, no… I asked to kinda guide my classmates – when was the declaration of independence signed because that was basically a bugger off to England. I got the response of blank stares and I don’t know.

Now this makes me sad because last week in my history class we discussed the 4th of July and when the teacher asked what it was a celebration of the girl sitting next to me answered: fireworks. She was serious.

Now why does this make me sad? Would it make you sad?! It does for me… Especially since these kids are straight out of high school pretty much and do not know when our Declaration of Independence was signed. I’m sorry but my 5 year old nephew knows this – I am pretty sure, he is a smart kid. But this is one of the most important day in our nations history. It is not a celebration of fireworks – which are a reminder of the war we fought.

It was like last year when I went to a baseball game for the 4th and when the national anthem was sung most of the people around me showed no respect. Kept their hats on and did not put their hands over their hearts, but they did for God Bless America. And they all sang that. No one sang the National Anthem and peoples kids were screaming.

Is this a sign that we are loosing something here in America when the next generation doesn’t seem to know American History? Are they learning it in school? Or is it just what I am seeing.

And it wasn’t just that… we were discussing New York and no one really knew that New York existed back that and how important it was to our nations history. Why base Rip Van Winkle outside of New York city in the mountains along the Hudson River? Maybe its cause I grew up for the first part of my life in New Jersey. It made common sense to me that we would know why that was an important area to base a story about someone sleeping thru the birth of our nation. But nothing is as bad as a lack of knowing when the Declaration of Independence was signed.

But it seriously did make me almost cry.