Category Archives: walking

Review – Renard Compression Socks

I received a pair at a discounted price for review purposes via Tomoson.com.  My views are my own and I do not recommend anything if I don’t believe in it. 

The muscle and joint aches after a solid workout are manageable for the most part until the next day.  That’s when I really feel it, especially after leg day.  Foam rolling, stretching, and muscle rub just don’t do enough after ambitious leg days. Add in the misfiring pain messages (thanks, Fibromyalgia) and Arthritis and I want to skip leg day for weeks. I wear a compression sleeve on my knee and wrap on my ankle when the pain gets bad, but had not considered compression socks until after the 5K in January.  I loved how good my back and shoulders felt after the run/walk and I think the compression top likely played a role.  I know the support for my knee and ankle made a difference, too. renard off

I’ve checked prices on compression socks and leg sleeves and decide I could try them later.  You know, when my wallet felt heavier. I was approached with an offer to purchase my first pair of compression socks at a deep discount and figured it couldn’t hurt.  I am now officially in love with Renard Compression Socks. Sorry, hubby.

Why Renard Compression Socks?  According to Renard (and others), they provide muscle support and functionality, increase blood circulation, inhibit accumulation of lactic acid, all of which reduce soreness after a workout.  I decided to put them to the test while lifting, walking, and in general when a pain flare kicked in.  I felt like I could go further while walking and hit the 4 mile mark at close to a 4 mph pace.  I felt it in my shins and calves while speeding up, but that feeling was fleeting and did not result in excessive soreness or pain the next day.  My feet were also dry thanks to the breathable Nylon/Spandex blend.

I tried them a second time on leg day.  Oh, man, was it leg day.  There were squats, lunges, and deadlifts for what felt like days.  I finished with a good stretch and put my feet up afterward.  I expected pain the next day, but did not feel as much as I expected.  Renard promises calf and shin support and I had it. My thighs, however, were not as pleased.  Then again, they were not covered by compression gear. 

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On the third try, it was just a pain flare day.  My ankles were swelling and I had leg cramps.  I decided to slip on the compression socks to see if they would reduce the pain in my legs so I could sleep.  They did!  I felt a reduction in ankle pain and the leg cramps seemed to fade.  Compression socks were like a constant massage – a gentle, yet effective massage.  I felt fantastic the next morning and couldn’t believe the difference that type of support made.

Like I said, I’m now in love with Renard Compression Socks.  The best part, they’re on sale right now for $15.99 a pair on Amazon and they fit over my healthy runner’s calves.

Do you use compression gear?  What is your favorite type?

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Early Morning Exercise Person? Not me.

Exercise, yes  Early morning?  Not so much.
Dream Designs photo.

Yeah, I am not a 5:30-6 am exercise person.  Maybe by 6:30 I’ll be awake enough not to trip over my own feet.  Maybe.

We don’t all have to get moving this early.  I know how I am, and a morning person I am not.  Trying to
force it makes me resentful and ready to quit.  I won’t focus on what I’m doing, but on how much I hate being up and active other than the usual morning thing.

But that’s okay. Knowing that this isn’t my style is okay.  Trying to force it when I have the option of flexibility is not okay.  Making this time my time to reflect and awaken is good.  Having breakfast (Shakeology with almond & coconut butter, ice, and unsweetened almond milk – noms!) and checking my calendar this morning is more my style. I like to ease into my mornings is I can.  The alternative does not bode well.  For me or anyone in my path.

So why am I up this early?  Hubs is starting a new routine and that means I’m starting one, too. I don’t have to like it, but I am supporting him.  So I’m awake for now.  And working a little.  Kinda.  Checking the calendar and completing a little research isn’t going to kill me.  I don’t think it will, anyway.  Ask me again in a few hours.

Oy, I digress.  How did a discussion on morning exercise turn into something about work?  Oh yeah, I’m not completely awake.  Wow.

Anyway, exercise is important to me.  Whether it’s a walk, strength training, yoga, pt, or sweat time with my fav videos, I need it.  Finding the optimal time for me to exercise mindfully is important.  And the early hour wake-up calls are not optimal for me.  I’m a late morning type.  It’s when I’m more functional, so it’s when I need to move.  The mid-morning or early afternoon coffee break is my sweat time.  I fel better that
way and move better that way.  And don’t want to strangle anyone that way.

So here I am, coming out.  I am not a morning person and that’s okay.

Your turn.  When do you schedule your time to move?  There are not wrong answers; just different ones.

The next 4 weeks

…will consist of final exams, a huge IT Networking project, new house stuff (cleaning, painting, ripping up carpet & finishing hardwood floors, reglazing bathroom tiles, work, school stuff for the kiddos, snuggling with hubster, being knocked over by dogs (as usual), and following the routine that helped me when I started on a weigh loss journey a few years back. This will be my typical weekday routine:

  • Get hubster off to work
  • 15-20 minute walk with the dogs (well, hobble for me until my knee is back to 100%)
  • 8 Minutes in the Morning
  • Breakfast and supplements (multi+iron, GLA, CoQ10, joint formula, flaxseed oil, magnesium + calcium, something for pain if needed)
  • School & work
  • Family stuff – lunch with the kids, torturing them with my ‘uncoolness,’ dinner with my three favorite people
  • Afternoon or evening walk or yoga; meditation

On weekends I’ll get to skip the am dog walking cause hubster & the kids take over, and I may not have work, but everything else stays the same.

Program and personal goals

  • Start 7/14
  • 6-8 pounds down by 8/10 (218-220 the goal weight)
  • 190 by 12/31

Overall goals

  • 150 pounds
  • 45 minute to 1 hour karate or kickboxing class (or video) at least twice a week

I will look at myself the way hubby sees me.

When this 4 weeks is over, I’ll start a new cycle. I can eat what I want; nothing’s forbidden. I will play with my food as always, but will try new things more often. I’ll weigh in weekly, but will stay away from the tape measure for at least 2 weeks.

It’s official – I think I hate my dogs

Not all the time, just today. Well, any day that they decide to knock me down by slamming into my knees. And following up by jumping on me in their attempts to get each other. I’m sitting here with throbbing pain bouncing up and down my left side (already my weak side), listening to their tags jingle as they wrestle less than three feet away; oblivious.

At least I got in a little of the morning walk before I ate wet grass, eh?

My knee is wrapped at the moment and hopefully will be good enough tomorrow for walking. Instead of Turbo Jam I’ll dust off Walk Away the Pounds. Today I’ll get in some upper body work and eat well.

I’ve decided to start counting WW points again. I’m not changing how I eat, just making sure I keep my portions in check. And I’m cutting the caffeine down again. I’ve been bad and getting way too much of it lately.

Monday, Monday…..

Here’s how my week went

It’s been stressful, but not bad overall. I exercised, ate ok, and made it through two potential binges. I won’t bore you with too many details.

I bought a pedometer and logged my walks and elliptical strides.:
Monday – 8,000 steps
Tuesday – 3500 so far (stupid pedometer reset during my morning walk)
Wednesday – 3672 steps
Thursday – 2200 steps (not a good day at all)
Friday – 4200 so far

21,572 for the week! Not too shabby!

I also made it through the week without Tweedle Dee and Tweedle Dumb knocking me off my feet during their morning walk/run. They did, however, destroy dog bed #4, a pair of sunglasses, and a battery for one of s-son’s RC cars. Lovely, eh?

I’ve been a slacker about getting in a sweat-inducing workout lately. I have Turbo Jam just sitting here, so I’ve decided that I’ll follow the schedule for a month to see how what progress I make. I really liked the workout. I just feel strange about working out with an audience. Silly, isn‘t it? I like how it feels, but blow it off in case I hear giggles or a snide comment. It’s all in my head. My kids like when I exercise and have joined me. The last ones to giggle were hubby and my brother when I pulled out one Richard Simmons’ Broadway videos. And they quickly shut up once they saw that it was work – I challenged the slackers and they left me alone after 5 minutes, lol. I need to shut those bad inner voices out and get back to work. Feel free to give me a shove if I slack off.

Have a wonderful weekend! Get your grill on – lots of healthy alternatives out there that taste just as good!

Wednesday – another ick day

Yes, I awakened feeling a little worse than I had been feeling so far this week, but made a point of not letting the kids see. They had to tiptoe around me when my back was at its worst, so the last thing I want is to scare or worry them. I took DS and his friend to the pool (I sat poolside, practically salivating at the thought of hitting the water), took out a couple loads of laundry, walked with the dogs, finished grocery shopping, and did some cleaning. As soon as the kids pass out tonight I’m going to.

Hubby came home early to help out, but he’s out cold right now. He fell asleep while I was putting the finishing touches on a short assignment.

I finally think I know why I’ve been ick these past few days. Here’s the backstory – I’ve been feeling off since Sunday evening and it has not let up one bit. While hubby and I talked this afternoon, a lightbulb went off. Every day that I’ve felt bad was a day that i had this bread we keep on hand. We’ve discussed no longer buying it because it would turn within 2-4 days of opening the loaf. Well, I’ve made sammies on it every day since Saturday, and had 2 sandwiches with it yesterday. I pulled out the loaf and checked the slices – no mold. I got hubby to take a wiff when he got in (he has an incredible sense of smell) and it smelled like mold.

I’m allergic to penicillin and have been eating icky bread. Lovely.

The bread has been tossed, the detox fixins are on hand, and this girl is gonna flush her system with fruit, veggies, dandelion & ginger teas, lemon, and water. I want this ick gone, dammit!

Here’s to a good Thursday. I’m off work, can sort of sleep in, and am ready to feel better. I’m so very tired of feeling bad. It never fails – two steps forward, one step back. I’ve made it through a few high-stress days without resorting to comfort food, but I’ve been slowly poisoning myself. Woohoo…..

Tuesday = more ick

I’m tired. Really tired. Whatever this is is wearing me down, and not sleeping well does not help matters.

It was a good food day, but it almost wasn’t. I had a late snack (around 5 pm) and worked on assignments before realizing I hadn’t had dinner – at 11 pm. I wasn’t in the mood to cook (and had a lovely clogged kitchen sink to contend with) , so hubster offered to go grab something. I’ve been craving Taco Bell lately so I wrote down my nummies of choice and off her went. The store’s computer was down, so no TB. I told him to skip it and I’d grab something, and was resigned to whipping something up after all, when he called back. Burger King was open. Visions of onion rings and the veggie burger danced through my head. Luckily for me, they closed early. At the time I was bummed, but today I’m glad. I snagged a PB&J and some pineapple juice instead (yum)!

B: green smoothie (strawberries, cucumbers, romaine, lemon juice, & splash agave nectar); water; supplements
L: chickpea ‘tuna’ salad, reduced fat Wheat Thins; green tea
S: blueberry Nutri-grain bar (2), lemon water
D/late snack: PB&J on Pepperidge Farms Honey Flax bread (too heavy for me)

Exercise: 45 minutes walking, stretching

Friday wasn’t a bad day after all

I thought that after my dogs slammed into my right knee at full speed that I’d end up sitting most of the weekend. After a little while on my butt (and a little ice) it was okay. They were as apologetic as ever, tiptoeing around me, kissing my feet until I pet them. I’m so whipped – but don’t ever tell them that.

Last night we split into 2 teams and the boys did their thing while DD and I did ours. She and I had take out for dinner – Taco Bell – chatted, and caught up on Blue Dragon and Code Geass. If I hadn’t mentioned it before, she’s awesome!

B: Lightlife baked ham (70 calories & 0 fat for 4 slices!!!!) on rye w/Nasoya & a pickle; supplements, water, & coffee

L: massive bowl o’ fruit – berries, pineapple, & kiwi; Crystal Light

S: 2 slices Ezekiel toast w/jelly; tea

D: Taco Bell – 2 fresco style bean burritos (beans & onions thanks to the salmonella in tomatoes), side beans & rice, chips, empanada; Crystal light

Exercise: 40 minute walk, 2 yoga sessions