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Archive for 'exercise'

Warning: An Unladylike Topic Ahead

Most days I go for a bike ride. It’s a great way to get out of the house and combat bottom spread–the writer’s curse. I think I suffer from a very mild form of hayfever or allergies because the minute I go outside my nose starts to run. It’s not enough to cause me distress, but when I’m exercising I tend to breathe through my mouth.

Picture this: Me calmly riding along on my bike with my mouth open and listening to my iPod.

Got the picture? Right. The minute I open my mouth it’s like an invitation to a Rave. The invitation spreads fast and far to every bug in the vicinity. They fly in like kamikaze pilots, diving bombing me to get to the party.

Now, we get to the unladylike topic of spitting.

Here’s what happens. A bug flies into my mouth. First I almost run my bike off the path. I’m choking and gasping and flapping my hands. Oh, good, I think. The bug didn’t get in. Then I feel it. The bug inside my mouth. I gag and splutter and attempt to spit it out. It’s still there. I gather up saliva, swish my mouth and do my very best spit. A great blob of saliva lands on my hand and I start laughing. Remember I’m still riding my bike? Right. I’m now chuckling like an idiot, wobbling down the path, and swiping my wet hand on my T-shirt. Oy!

When hubby reads this he’s gonna laugh. He’s always said I’m a girl when it comes to spitting. Personally I don’t think it’s a skill I need to learn, not unless I come back as a llama or a camel. Then I’ll be in real trouble.

BTW – today’s bike ride was a two-bug day.

How are your spitting skills?

Thirteen Common Sense Suggestions to Help Weight Loss

At this time of the year many of us are thinking about losing weight, especially after all the yummy festive goodies we’ve consumed. I found these tips in a Diabetes New Zealand brochure that arrived in our mailbox. I thought they’d make an excellent TT topic.

Thirteen Tips for Weight Loss

1. Make a plan. It’s the best way to avoid that “grab a snack” thing that happens when you’re hungry.

2. Fruit and vegetables are great. Remember Five Plus a day?

3. Bread and cereals are good to fill you up, but remember wholegrain is best – and avoid sugary cereals.

4. Fruit juice can contain almost as much sugar as fizzy soft drinks. Water is best if you’re thirsty.

5. Chocolate, lollies and other treats aren’t healthy. Keep them as an occasional treat.

6. Know your food labels and learn what they mean. Even when labels say “lite” it’s worth checking the back to make sure they’re less than 10% fat.

7. Go for a walk. It doesn’t need to be far. Even once around the block will get things pumping.

8. Make friends with stairs. Whenever there’s an option, stairs are the way to go.

9. Set easy goals, make a plan and stick to it. It’s easier to do things if you’ve written them down.

10. Join a club such as walking, dancing or even an amateur theatre club to keep yourself active.

11. Aim for 30 minutes of exercise a day. (60 mins for kids) It doesn’t need to be all at once. You can split it up into 10 minute intervals.

12. During the first couple of weeks weigh foods and keep track of your calories. For a normal woman (i.e. me) aim for around 1200 calories per day to achieve weight loss.

13. Don’t try to do it alone. Recruit family members or friends to join you on your weight loss adventure.

Do you have any helpful diet tips to add?

Writer Tip: Shelley Munro

Read. You’ll probably hear this from every published writer you meet. You’ll probably hear it at every conference you attend too. It really is important to know how the romance genre works and the classic hooks that are popular with readers. Analyze each book you read. Treat them like textbooks and learn from every book. Discover what works for you as a reader, learn how other writers deal with dialogue, narrative and love scenes. As you read, you’ll absorb quite a bit of craft and you’ll probably find that you do things instinctively after a while.

A bonus tip: Take the time to exercise. Not only does it keep your mind alert and give you down time to plot and work through problems, it helps keep the dreaded bottom spread at bay. What? You thought bottom spread was an urban legend put out by published authors to scare you off? No, unfortunately. It’s quite true. If you spend all your time writing and don’t exercise you will end up with a large backside. Heed my warning and exercise! :grin:

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A Wii Fun

Hubby and I have discussed getting a Wii for a long time, but kept putting it off. During the weekend Mr. Munro rang me up and asked if he could buy one. I couldn’t think of a single reason why he couldn’t and he arrived home with a Wii. Our theory is that it will be good exercise during the colder winter months. We purchased the basic one that comes with the sports and have spent most nights playing a few games of tennis and baseball.

My favorite is the tennis. I luv tennis. In real life I’m not a good player. I have enthusiasm but no skill. With the Wii, I like the way I can serve and always get the ball in the right place. Not so much in real life.

I have a problem with my right arm and have to baby it along, even when it comes to writing. Playing on the Wii hurt it so I’ve switched to playing with my left hand. Strangely my tennis has improved. I now know what I’ve been doing wrong all these years!

I’ve heard that the fitness Wii is very good, especially the new Personal trainer. We’re thinking we might get that next. I like to cycle and walk, but don’t get much upper body exercise. Hopefully, the Wii will cure that problem.

Do you have a Wii? Do you like it? Do you have the Fitness program, and if so, do you like it? What is your favorite type of non-Wii exercise?

Why Didn’t Someone Warn Me….

…that a person uses different muscles climbing up and down mountains to when they cycle, walk and run?


…to take better care of my big toe – the same toe that I injured while ice skating when I was in my teens, the same toe the Goal Attack or Goal Shoot managed to jump on every netball season after that. I’ve given up counting the number of times that toe nail has bruised and dropped off. Another one coming up to add to the number.

I Hurt. :cry:

Keep It Movin’

A recent survey done by SPARC (Sport & Recreation New Zealand) has found that around half of New Zealand adults exercise for at least half an hour a day five times a week. Their survey shows the level of exercise among adults is about the same as in 2001.

SPARC spends around 70 million dollars a year on their campaign to encourage New Zealanders to Push Play and exercise. They’re calling the survey results encouraging, yet surely that means fifty per cent of NZ adults aren’t exercising?

I heard on the radio this morning that the NZ result is better than in many overseas countries but I couldn’t find an online source to quote.

I’m in the positive fifty per cent who exercise. I find exercise a great stress reliever and feel more alert afterwards. I also use the time while I’m exercising to think about my writing and often work out plot problems. I feel horrid if I don’t exercise. I cycle, walk and run a bit. Oh, and dance when I can get away with it. As I mentioned a few days ago, the dog takes exception to my dancing! Exercise isn’t always fun. Some days I don’t feel like moving from my chair, but I do it anyway. I’m a firm believer in the use it or lose it school of thought, believing keeping mobile helps you later when you’re older. I have to think about these things you know because I don’t have any children to look after me in my old age.

I’m lucky to live in an area with a lot of walking and cycling paths. I was excited this week to see the council is extending the paved area again. The concrete should be dry and the new paths open in a few days so I can explore it to see where they go.

How are you at the exercise thing? Does your country have a similar organization to encourage people to exercise?