Thursday, May 29, 2008

HydraCoach Water Bottle Review

After reading a recommendation from a We Covet reader, I found myself coveting it too. I even called and emailed the company to see if they would consider sending samples to Sarah and me. But then I decided I didn't want to wait and see, I wanted the HydraCoach now. I went to Target and shelled out over 20 bucks for the bottle.

There are definite pros and cons:


Edited to add: de in DC has a serious one to add, the plastic reservoir of this bottle is type "7" which is the kind under scrutiny due to preliminary findings that "7" contains Bisphenol, a chemical which has been identified as being a possible carcinogen.

It's heavy. It's even heavier when you fill it with water.

In order to sip water from the bottle, you have to bite down on a silicon stem and suck. Not only is this uncomfortable on my teeth, it just feels too much like I am sucking on a sippy cup.

Having spent a lot of time in New England, it occurred to me the silicon stem of the bottle is far too reminiscent of the neck of a steamer. Again, something I found to be disconcerting if not flat out creepy. ( note picture of longneck clams)

It is very easy to program.

The digital display is clear. Buttons are easy to figure out.

Program your weight into the bottle and it will give you a recommendation of how many ounces of water you should be drinking to be properly hydrated. (Although one of the guys at the gym commented "What if it's a really hot day? How will it know?" Is it a valid point? I have no idea because I'm too busy hydrating myself and peeing like a racehorse as a result.)

Keeps track of how much you have had to drink, in ounces or in metric.

Pros and Cons aside. My biggest problem is I kept forgetting where I put the thing. Not the bottle's fault. It's all on me. At one point as we were getting ready to go from point A to Point B, Sarah asked, "Hey, you want this?" and I responded, "Want what?" (Picture Sarah dangling the hydracoach by it's handle thingy and looking at me hard.)

Can I recommend this gadget? Not for the price. If it were 10 bucks I think it would be a better investment.

1st Real Workout

We had our first workout today. Things went pretty well. Vionna didn't try to kill us or anything.

We started out doing five minutes on the ellipticals. Not bad at all.

Then we moved on. By far the strangest part was the American Gladiator style game of catch. (These pictures are a reenactment. We were much further apart for the real one.)

Devra seemed to have some trouble with the balancing part of this exercise. She fell off of her half ball a lot.

I would kick Devra's ass at American Gladiators. Maybe next time Vionna will let us use those padded sticks.

It was a beautiful day and we worked out outside almost the whole time. Devra said it felt like a vacation but I cannot recall any vacations I have ever gone on that involved push ups.

Here is a super flattering picture of me doing a squat.

I left the workout feeling pretty good but two and a half hours later I am starting to feel sore.

I've got a couple more pictures here. Vionna assured us that next week we would take pictures of us doing "the plank" and "Superman" for supreme embarrassment.

All in all it was a really good work out. I felt challenged but I never once cried or felt like I was going to die.

Let me know if you guys have any picture requests.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Guest Post: I hate these losers!

I want you to know that I hate you both for being such loser moms. I actually EXERCISED today (on purpose!)for the first time since Hurricane Katrina.

You suck.

At the time, the health club where I worked out was shut down for several months and so I had a "valid excuse". After that I was too "stressed" to exercise. But after reading your inspiration, I was either subjected to my own personal guilt, or else I just succumbed to your subtle form of positive parental peer pressure. So my era of more than two years without purposeful exercise has come to a close.

I blame you two.

My goal was to just get my heart rate elevated for just 20 lousy minutes. No prob. I jogged/walked for a couple of miles. Unfortunately as I turned the corner and jogged into the park to use the walking trail, I ran right into 4 classes of kids from my daughter's elementary school having a picnic, and saw 4 women that I know. Nothing like gasping for air, and sweating to death while trying to make a good impression. Secretly I know that they were all jealous of my internal motivation and were thinking that they really needed some exercise too (at least I hope that's what they were thinking while they stuffed picnic food into their pieholes).

Anyway, your blog got me going, and I am either the envy of the neighborhood or possibly the laughing stock. So I just wanted to say...

Thanks biatches!!


Tomorrow: You're Only a Day Away.

Tomorrow is our first REAL workout with Vionna.

I am very excited but also I am kind of scared.

Truth be told I am a lazy, out of shape crybaby. And I can't help thinking about how sore I was after the fitness assessment.

I mean - how pathetic is it that I was sore after an assessment? I only did seven push ups (which in reality adds six to my lifetime total of push ups - not including bras) and my armpits hurt for a whole day.

Also, I have to show Vionna my fitness journal which I have written in a grand total of once and if I write about today I have to admit to those Oreos.

Now that I have admitted to my all around wussiness I will focus on the positives.

1) I scored my favorite baby sitter. He is home from college for the summer and I'm hoping he will have a permanent Tuesday/Thursday slot open for me. The Goon Squad loves him and they will be thrilled to see him.

2) I might be able to wear some of my shorts from last year soon.

3) I always panic about physical activity and I usually feel great afterwards.

4) Since you guys are reading Loser Moms (and Devra and I appreciate that, we really do) I feel like I am obligated to actually go through with this. I'll be seeing some of you at BlogHer in San Francisco and I'll have to be in better shape or else there will be double embarrassment.

I'm rambling, aren't I?

Whatever. I'm sure you'll hear from us tomorrow. We'll let you know how it goes.

Vionna, ready or not here we come!

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

That's it. I just need to grow up

All I need in order to reach my BMI goal is add 15 1/4 inches to my own height. You are probably wondering where I will find those extra inches. I have thought about this very carefully as well. I have a plan. I think it will work.

By my own admission I suck at math. Numbers just make my eyes glaze over. I even had to call two friends in order to figure out the amount of inches between 4'10 3/4" and 6' 2". But my sorry-ass math performance is for another day. Right now we're dealing with my BMI goal. So compare the numbers of our fitness test results.

Here are Sarah's scores:

Target Heart Rate Zone=120-157
Step Test=Poor
Pushup Test=Below Average
Sit up Test=Above Average
BMI= 26.6/Overweight(Goal is 22)
Body Fat=32.4/Obese (Goal is 26)

Here are my scores:

Target Heart Rate Zone=116-152
Step Test=Above Average
Pushup Test=Excellent
Sit up Test=Excellent
BMI= 40.0/Grade II Obesity (Goal is 25)
Body Fat=46.4/Obese (Goal is 28)

From the looks of our fitness test scores, I can just beat the crap out of Sarah and take her height away from her. I mean look at those push up numbers of hers. If I sit on her, she's not going to be able to do anything about it. Can she push me off? I doubt it, her upper body stength just isn't there. If I take her height and run up a flight of stairs with it? She's not going to be able to catch me.

Don't the experts say that in order to achieve your fitness goal you need to have a plan? I now have a plan. I will ambush Sarah at the bottom of the stairs at the Gym on Thursday.

I hope Vionna is cool with it. Because if she's not, I strongly suspect Vionna's fitness test scores are better than mine and she'll be able to catch me even if I run freakishly fast.

Yeah, that's a visual, isn't it? I'll leave you to consider that for a bit.

I am Obese.

When I was little I always thought that obese meant hugely fat. You know, the kind of overweight where you need a little cart to get around and you get a special handicapped parking permit.

At some point in my life I read that you only need to be 10 percent above your ideal body weight to be considered obese.

So, if my idea body weight at 5' 9" is 150 pounds (and I'm making that up. I don't know what the real number is, I just know I look thin at 150) I would only need to weigh 165 to be considered obese.

And don't I wish I weighed a mere 165?

Look. I know I am overweight. If I weren't I could just shop at The Limited like I used to.

Did you know The Limited doesn't carry size 14 anymore?

I knew it.

I am not obsessed with their clothes the way I used to be but it still hurts my feeling that I can't shop there.

What was I even talking about?

Oh right. I'm obese. Check out the results from my fitness test:

Target Heart Rate Zone=120-157
Step Test=Poor
Pushup Test=Below Average
Sit up Test=Above Average
BMI= 26.6/Overweight(Goal is 22)
Body Fat=32.4/Obese (Goal is 26)


I guess that is why I need Vionna.

Monday, May 26, 2008

I'm going to enthrall you with my acumen

If I wear this mask I believe it will prevent me from eating after 7PM.

I totally want one of these. Just to wear around the house at night. Who's with me?

Saturday, May 24, 2008

It's the End of the World as We Know It

Shockingly, I feel fine.

No kidding. I was sore as hell yesterday and then I went on the elliptical. Today, I feel great.

Exercise is strange and baffling to me.

I think I'll hop back on the elliptical this morning.* I'm on a roll.


*Plus if I do 20 minutes on my machine I can send Devra threatening e-mails later and force her to do it too.

Friday, May 23, 2008

Target, not the heart rate, the store.

I headed out to Target to get Son One's b-day gift. I called Sarah from my car...

Devra: "I shouldn't have driven. It hurts whenever I have to turn the steering wheel. Maybe I should have walked here from my house."

Sarah: "No, better you drove. Think about it. You'd get into Target, you'd find the gift and then what? You can't carry anything. How would you get it home? Steal a shopping cart from Target? Then you'd not only have to walk back home, but you'd have to push that fucking cart too. And then how do you think you'd feel? "

Devra: "Oh man. I didn't even think about that. Good point! You are such a wise woman. That is exactly why I called you. I needed to hear a voice of reason. Thank you!"

Then later in the afternoon I received this email from Sarah:
"Did my 20 biatch!" meaning she completed her 20 minutes on the elliptical.

Game on. So I completed my 20 as well.

Who do you think will be whining more about full body pain tomorrow?

Sarah or me?

Because winners have theme songs and losers need motivating

Devra says:

We know. We don't live in Philly. Maybe you don't think we're like Rocky and need a theme song, but we disagree. We need many theme songs to keep us inspired and motivated. Sure, we could come up with our own list of songs combining what we think to be the best of what we both like to hear. But do you really trust our judgement?
Do you trust two moms with a shared penchant for 80's music which only reflects a time when we both thought we looked smokin' hot?

Dokken, Culture Club, Anthrax, Tears For Fears, Iron Maiden, The Smiths, Pantera, New Order, QueensRyche, Pet Shop Boys, Sound Garden, Terrance Trent D'arby, Metallica, Simple Minds...

Think about that list of artists. Think about how Sarah and I both love this decade. How this pure and authentic love of the 80's sounds to each of us.

Now think about how it would actually sound if we combined them...

Think hard.

Then think about listening to something like that on your iPod or MP3.

Scares the ever living shit out of you, doesn't it?

Preventing us from making that playlist should be your first priority and in order to do that, you are going to have to give us song suggestions.

Your input will be included in a "You Choose, We Lose" playlist we will be happy to share on iTunes.

Something I've never said before as a parent, but am saying it now...

Devra says:

"This hurts me more than it hurts you." Who gets stiff and sore just from an fitness assessment? Who? Who? WHO?! Me. Evidently I also awoke this morning having an urge to write a blog post making me sound like a demented owl, but I digress.

For those of you wondering where exactly I hurt, for starters my arms. Had I known it would put me in this condition, I never would have whipped Sarah's ass in push-ups. I'm more than paying for it now. My legs ache which means going upstairs for any reason will pose some challenges. But, I am a problem solver. I always try to find a solution.

I am seriously considering living for the next few days on the ground floor of our house and bathing in the powder room sink.

Edited to add: For the record Sarah is exagerating for dramatic effect. Something I would never do. You can count on me to tell it to you straight; I did 26 push-ups. While the push-ups may have been easier for me given my proximity to the ground, Sarah had a big advantage with the Step Test. For the record, because I am not overly dramatic, the "Step" was practically as high as my neck and for Sarah it barely reached her ankle.

Ouch: The Day After

Sarah says:

Holy hell. My armpits hurt.

Vionna didn't even work us hard yesterday. She was only trying to get an idea of what kind of shape we were in.

I am such a wimp.

Did I mention that I could only do 8 girl push ups and Devra did something insane like 44?

Devra says it is because she is closer to the ground.

This is the past where I get to mention that I am 5' 9" and Devra is (I swear to God this is how she said it) 4' 10" 3/4.

I told her it was okay to round up to 4' 11".

So I promised that I would go on my elliptical at 5:00 this morning. Of course I slept through that workout. I'll do it later. After all. The whole internet knows. Well, maybe not the entire internet but the 38 people that read this site.

Anyway, my armpits hurt and so do my thigh muscles. (I suspect these have a name but biology words make me squeamish.)

No pain no gain right?

So I'm taking bets on who thinks I am going to die during our first real workout. I'm putting my money on me laying on the ground and crying at some point. I lean toward the over dramatic.

Thursday, May 22, 2008

We need to do something.

And it is I. Devra from Parentopia. It's been 6 months since I wrote a post about how I want to be in shape. I even contacted Vibram and asked if they would send me a pair of their Vibram Five Fingers because someone made a comment on that post recommending what I refer to as "toe shoes." Vibram sent me the shoes (they also sent a pair to Aviva). I must admit, that as hideous as I thought they looked*, they actually are very comfortable and I do wear them. Have I worn them on my elliptical yet? Ummmmm. No. But I did wear them to a party. They were a tremendous hit.

I also wore them today when I met Vionna. We were going over so much during the time we were with Vionna, I never got to explain my footwear. On Thursday can someone remind me to tell her why I was wearing toe shoes? She didn't say anything to me about the shoes, but she did inquire, "Do you have regular exercise shoes?" I don't think I've ever used "regular" and "exercise" in the same sentence. Ever. I'll also have to tell her how much I hate tying shoes. Then maybe she'll give me a pass to wear the toe shoes.

Here are some highlights of our meeting with Vionna:

Vionna gave each of us a pole so we could hold it up over our head and then complete an overhead squat test. I seized this opportunity to use the pole to demonstrate for Sarah a flag twirling routine I learned in high school. (Yes, I was a flag twirler in high school. I was dyslexic and left handed. It wasn't pretty. Don't tell my mother, it would burst her bubble because she thinks I was a soloist in the half-time show. Shhhh. I only did the twirling thing so I could go on the band trip to Florida every year.)

Neither Sarah nor I were able to find our own pulse prior to the Step Test. Sarah maintained that she might, in fact, be dead. I held strong to my belief I may be a true descendant of a Zombie. As Sarah and I debated our mortality, a woman walked by us and blew both our theories to bits, "You are both definitely alive." Then Vionna made us do the step test anyway.

After the step test, Sarah and I felt like dying. On the "up" side, I found my pulse racing throughout my body and heard my own heart beating in my ears.

Vionna took our body measurements. While I didn't add the numbers from my arm, waist and hips, I wouldn't be surprised at all if they added up to be 360, proving once and for all that I am in shape. Round.

Vionna gave us a nifty notebook in which to keep track of what we are eating and how we do on the days we aren't meeting with Vionna.

So today begins a significant change for Sarah and me. Two losers who hope to win the battle of the bulge.

*Note to you single women seeking male companionship, these are the shoes I would wear to meet men. Seriously. They are. True story, I walked into an elevator wearing these shoes and this really hot guy made eye contact with me and implored, "You must tell me where you got those shoes!" Had I been single, I would have brought him home with me. If you want one like him, you're going to want to get you some toe shoes. Trust me on this.

Here Goes Nothing

It is I. Sarah, Goon Squad Sarah.

You may be wondering why I am voluntarily calling myself a loser. It isn't just my normal self-deprecation. Devra and I are on a mission. Our first goal is to lose 10 pounds by BlogHer '08.

We've got six weeks and a secret weapon.

Our secret weapon? Meet Vionna Jones from Fit in D.C.

Vionna will be doing our personal training twice a week.

We had our first session today. We spent the morning doing several different activities so that Vionna could determine how out of shape we are what our current levels of physical fitness were. She also measured us and figured out our BMI.

It wasn't pretty.

But you know what? That is why we are doing this.

I've got my journal to write down what I put in my mouth and what kind of physical activity I do every day.

I'm not sure the spaces are big enough for me to write down everything I eat in a day.

My problem is evident. I eat too much, I drink too much beer and I spend too much time on my fat ass staring at the computer.

Now we change that. Devra and I will be posting our story here.

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