Old Dog, New Tricks


I have always been a warm weather walker.  It never occurred to me that I should be anything else.  No walking until it hit 50 degrees for this chick, thank you very much

But I’ve noticed recently, especially since I’m supposed to be exercising every day, that there is a lot of information out there regarding cold weather walking.  It’s said that you will burn more calories walking in colder weather. Of course, it wouldn’t surprise me if there is even more information  next week that it’s NOT good for you. The media will always write what they want and twist the facts to agree with their article. But that’s a rant for another day.

All that aside, I’ve been walking every day — even in colder weather.  Except for yesterday, which was totally out.  Blowing a gale it was and only 30 degrees. I’ve watched enough meteorologists going through their wind chill routines to know enough to stay inside.

Today it was 32 degrees with a pretty gusty breeze but nothing like yesterday.  I wore two pairs of knitted pants, a long-sleeved tee-shirt, a turtle neck shirt, a Columbia 3 in 1 jacket, a Polartec around the back of my head earmuffs, my slouchy hat that I knitted for myself over the earmuffs, my wool socks, a scarf around my neck and my leather mittens.  Yes, as a matter of fact,  I did look like a lot Randy of A Christmas Story fame.

But I was warm!  That jacket blocked all the wind, my ears and hands were toasty, I had my scarf loosely covering my mouth and nose.  It was almost sort of empowering that I was out exercising even though conditions weren’t ideal.  By the time I got home 30 minutes later having gotten my mile and a half din, I was actually sweating a little bit under all that.  {Note to self — look into polypropylene for a base layer.}

All this cold weather clothing put me in mind of when I was a little twig in the north of New York state with all the snow, cold and ice that it had to offer.

#1 — I hated oatmeal (lovingly called porridge by my grandparents)

#2 — I hated that I had to wear ski pants to school (So what if it was supposed to be -20 degrees, wearing ski pants was NOT COOL, even though it was back in the days that girls wore dresses to school.)

#3 — I hated wearing winter hats and boots

And I can imagine my grandparents conversation, looking down at me.

“Bernice, she’s finally wearing proper winter clothing!!”

Walter, she’s eating porridge!!”

Yep, only took me 57 years!!


OK, this I can fix, I think……




I have hypertension.  I like to think it sounds much more pleasant than high blood pressure.  I also take antihypertensive medications, because it’s hard for me to say high blood pressure pills. Also more pleasant, don’t you think?

Doctor’s appointment a couple of weeks ago.  He had warned me six months prior that if my cholesterol was still high, he would put me on something to lower it.  Of course, it was higher this time than six months ago — 259.

During the past six months, I was haphazardly exercising, eating right, getting enough sleep (or as much as menopause decides I should get) strictly head in the sand stuff.  Somewhere in my head, I think I’m still 30.  Also somewhere in my head, I think I’m thinner than I actually am.

I have been walking at least a mile every day, rain/shine/cold be damned.  I have been keeping track of what I eat and how much of it in my nutrition tracker over at Sparkpeople.  I have been keeping track of my mileage on my fitness tracker.  Sleep, well, whatever I can get I’m happy with these days.

And what happened that stuck a fire under my butt?  Two markers for diabetes were elevated in my blood work results..  Not diabetic, or even pre-diabetic, just elevated.  But my word, that just scared the bejesus out of me.

I’m trying to stay away from the scale.  I know in my head that it doesn’t give me the whole picture, but we’re such a number oriented society.  So I take a peek now and then — and proceed to berate myself because I haven’t lost 5 pounds yet.   Or one even.

But my pants are starting to fit better.  When I stand up and look down, I can’t see my stomach anymore.  My double chin is not as pronounced.  My arms aren’t poking out slightly from my body anymore.  And I don’t huff and puff walking up the hill to my house. These are the markers that I need to pay attention to. Or should I say markers to which I must pay attention?

I’m going back the first of March for more blood work.  I think if the results are better, I will know that I’m doing well, even if the scale says otherwise.  Oh crap, see?  I forgot to stay away from the scale already!! Stay tuned, film at 11.