Whether dieting or “Jesus-ing,” stick with the basics!

Welp, yet another small but HISTORICALLY significant gain this week — but some theological AND diet wisdom to go along with it! First, the annoying news:

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Yep, that’s right, as of today’s weigh-in, I’m no longer 50 pounds down!! Thus, I’ll either have to rename the blog (“50 by 61?” “50 by 62?”) OR get back to basics and recalibrate that diet!

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And in a weird weigh way, it kinda ties in with some theological stuff I’ve been dealing with. See, as you longtime regular readers (all 3 of you!) know, I’m a Byzantine Catholic.

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However, every so often, like most sensible people, I have my doubts about the whole “religulous” thing. That’s because, also like a lot of otherwise sensible people, I have a tendency to let my religion get tied up with my politics, and wind up worshipping something more like the all-too-human leaders of my party of choice (whichever it is at the time) than any transcendent deity that may or may not exist!

And no matter which version of Jesus you favor, Democrat, Republican, or “other,” you have to know, deep down inside, that if there even is any such Person at all, He’s probably not tied to any one particular political party or ideology that we humanoids have managed to cobble together for ourselves!

30 rock we count those

Anyway, the nice thing about going through a bout of atheism on a regular basis is that it’s kinda like cleaning out that junk drawer in the kitchen.

junk drawer.jpgYou know how it is — you throw everything out, clean the drawer, leave it empty for a while, till one fine day you need to store a new kitchen thingy (“Hey, why not in that nice, clean, empty drawer?”) and then another thingy, and another,  till before you know it, everything’s back to normal! Except now, at least you’ve got NEW junk in there, instead of all the old junk, and for a while, anyway, maybe you’ll actually remember what’s in there, and occasionally even find something useful there!

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(And trust me, I’m getting to the dieting stuff! Be patient!)

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ANYHOO, so from time to time I throw out all the theological crap I’ve been storing in my internal junk drawer, aka “brain,” and then a few weeks/months/years later, I find myself with a brand new religious idea that makes sense! So I store it in my nice, clean, empty brain, then add another,  and another, till pretty soon everything’s back to normal, till the next spring cleaning time rolls around.

But the mistake a lot of theologically inclined people make when they’re losing their faith is to try and “Jesus” harder, a term I first came across in Rolltodisbelieve, a “nonreligious” Patheos blog by the very amusing and perceptive Captain Cassidy, aka Cassidy McGillicuddy. (And before my religulous friends get uptight, yes I’m still religious, but you know what? When you’re lost in the forest, sometimes it’s helpful to consult someone who’s outside it, and thus has a better view of the overall map!)

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Anyway, in a recent post, Captain Cassidy writes about how Christians rarely think about how they will cope if they find themselves starting to lose their faith:

If the doubters don’t want to do a bunch of busywork or they don’t respond in something other than the expected manner, then Christians fall back on accusing the doubters of Jesus-ing incorrectly. …
If doubters fail to resolve the doubt in question, then obviously the doubters allowed the scripts to fail.

Again, I don’t necessarily agree with all of the Captain’s *conclusions* in that post, but I sure do love the fact that she really pinpoints the problem(s) in ways that my fellow religulous friends are sometimes afraid to! And that brings me — AT LONG LAST!! — to the connection with the diet!

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When a longtime dieter who’s lost a whole bunch of weight starts regaining — “Why is this happening? I’m doing all the same stuff I was doing before! I’m eating all the same stuff!” — and they go online, what happens? Do they get sympathy (“Oh yeah, I’ve been there! Don’t worry, just take some deep breaths, get on with your life, take it one day at a time, it’ll all work out!“)? Well, maybe sometimes, but more often, they get stuff like:

“You’re dieting wrong! You should be [fill in fad diet of the month here] instead! What are your macros? Check your macros! Keto! Vegan! Calories don’t count!”

So here’s the connection! (OPINION ALERT!) Just like there’s all sorts of religions out there — all sorts of ways to find God and/or be spiritual or whatever — the ultimate goal of the best of them seems to boil down to having, and expressing, compassion and empathy for everyone.

jesus tattoos stupid questions

Now, some religions do that better than others, but you have to admit that’s at least the ideal, right? Well, the ultimate goal of every DIET is, of course, to lose weight! And some of them do that better than others — but they all do it by producing the same result: the all-important CALORIE DEFICIT!

calories points

As another blogger I admire, Jay at aworkoutroutine, points out, the best diet is the one that achieves that:

Whatever diet plan best suits your personal goals, needs and preferences and is therefore going to allow you to put the required fundamental principles of weight loss into action in the most Preferable, Enjoyable, Convenient and Sustainable (PECS!) way possible… THAT is the diet that’s best for you.

And that ties in with my personal opinion about “which is the best religion?”

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OPINION ALERT: The best religion is the one that makes you less likely to deliberately run over someone on your way to/from work — and the best diet is the one that results in a calorie deficit!!

Yes! It took a while but we finally got there!

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So there you go, your deep, heavy theological and dieting wisdom for the day! And yeah, I know this was a super-long post, but then again, I’m super-late posting it, so deal with it! See you next week!

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Memento mori, so pass the Doritos!

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First of all, excuse me if this post makes it sound like I’m depressed or something. Far from it – I’m actually enjoying our beautiful, mild fall weather here in sunny Southern California!

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But every once in a while, I do wax philosophic! And during the last couple of weeks, Mr. 50by60 and I have attended not one, but TWO, funerals, for a couple of wonderful people from our church. And whenever I have to go to a funeral, it kinda makes me ponder this whole “diet” thing (for a while, anyway!).

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I mean, why exactly am I trying to lose all this weight for, again? I mean, yeah, to be able to do more outdoorsy stuff, because I like doing outdoorsy stuff (except when it’s too hot, or too cold, or too wet, or too dry). And yeah, to be healthier so I can live longer (because all those Netflix/Hulu/Amazon Prime shows ain’t gonna binge-watch themselves!).

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But am I doing it because I really want to do it? Or because I think I should do it? Man, that’s a tough one! I mean, it ultimately speaks to the reality of our mortality here on Planet Earth, right? We all have a limited amount of time here on the Biosphere, so how do we want to use that time?

productive use of time

Back in the olden days, the Latin-rite Catholics had a saying: “Memento Mori.” Loosely translated, it means, “Remember, you’re gonna die!” Whatever you might think about the Catholic Church these days (and believe me, I get it!), it was actually a good reminder: get your priorities in order. Figure out what’s really important, in the light of, well, eternity!

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So I guess all this is my long-winded way of revealing that, YES I had a bit of a gain this past week:

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and YES, I still want to lose a bit more weight, because I want to stick around for quite a while!

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But NO, I’m not letting it worry me! Life is short no matter what you do, and YES, it’s important to stay as healthy as you can, as long as you can, but sooner or later … sooner or later, Jake, we all go to Chinatown. (Or, in my case, Yogurtland!)

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(Well, that was nicely morbid, huh? Don’t worry, next week’s post should be a bit more upbeat AND I’ll reveal all the fun facts about the newest member of our household, Pumpkin!)

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Hikin’ up ol’ Treadmill Hill!

Well, good morning, nieces and nephews out in Internetland! Yup, Aunt 50by60’s back with another snooze-inducing weigh-in!

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As you can see, things haven’t changed around here too much in the last few [checks calendar] months, weight-wise anyway. But take heart! Thanks to the inspiration of a dedicated Pacific Crest Trail thru-hiker named Jeff, who Aunt 50by60 encountered near the metropolis of Acton, California last week, she’s decided to take a proactive step towards making these weigh-ins a little more exciting.

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Yes sir!! Anyway, that’s right — I’VE JOINED YET ANOTHER GYM!

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Oh, OK, I know it’s not THAT exciting! But as long-time readers of this blog know all too well, I’ve been a member of the venerable 24 Hour Fitness of Simi Valley for years and years, mainly because of The Pool.

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Last year I temporarily added the lovely, but alas, too distant Anytime Fitness to my workout regimen.

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And it helped for a while, but as usual with ANY gym, I got bored and started making excuses to just, you know, WALK, like OUTSIDE, man!

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Which is great! Except what with rainy days, super-hot days, climate change, uh…meteors, and all that, outdoors isn’t always the best place for delicate, sensitive flowers like moi to hang out!

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Plus another added factor is that, in case you haven’t noticed, gas prices have been climbing just a tad lately.

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So I’ve got (yet another) an incentive not to drive long distances just to use a gym. Which is why, after decades of living within, literally, two BLOCKS from a perfectly serviceable YMCA, I’ve decided to actually join it!

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I’ve hesitated in the past because the membership seems a bit pricey compared to the other gyms. However, when I added in the steadily rising price of gas and time required to get to The Other Gym(s), it wasn’t that bad by comparison. Plus, I have to admit I was impressed when I actually went inside and found that, unlike my beloved 24 Hour Fitness, this particular Y has treadmills that actually seem to have been manufactured in THIS century!

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Plus they have lots of classes during the daytime which seem to be aimed primarily at doddering old fogeys (“Shoelace Tying 101,” “Stretch To Reach The Remote,” etc.) so I should fit right in!

drunk old lady

I’ve already done one workout there on the treadmill where, inspired by Jeff and all the intrepid PCT/Appalachian Trail hikers, I turned the incline up to an awe-inspiring, never-before-achieved (by me anyway) height of (ready?) 2.5!!! Wowsers!

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So things are looking up! And hopefully next week, things like my weight will be looking DOWN! If that makes any sense at all, which it rarely does, but come on … what did you expect from a blog written by someone who flunked Logic 101 in college?

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That’s all you get this week, folks! See you next week, when we’ll find out if my trip up Treadmill Hill had any real-world impact!

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Eau deer … another gain!

Yeah, the weight’s not really looking too good this week:

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Drat! Well, to be honest, I haven’t really been following through on the advice I keep giving all of YOU nice folks! In fact, I’ve been doing the opposite – NOT counting my calories, NOT exercising as much as I need to, etc. I mean, I still think all of that is great advice — y’know, if I actually did it!

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Yeah, well, that’s easy for you to say, Mr. President! (Also, not to get political or anything, but stay off the phone, for a while, Donald, it just gets you in hot water!)

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Anyway, now that summer’s finally over, and the weather gurus PROMISE that cooler weather is on the way, maybe I will actually do what I’m always telling other people to do: take more walks!

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Yeah! And walking did me a lot of good last winter. I enjoyed the physical part, as well as the mental and emotional “high” of being out in beautiful Mother Nature, as opposed to the gym.

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So bear with me! Your intrepid weight loss blogger is down*, but NOT out, yet! I’m still going to go out there and enjoy life — and now that the weather’s cooler, maybe stay away from Yogurtland!

 

So till next week, remember — do as I say, not as I do!

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(Or whatever!!)

(*OK, technically I’m “up,” but you know what I mean!)

 

True Confessions of a Weight Loss Blogger!

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Yikes! Sorry to be late checking in! I was on vacation last week in beautiful, sunny Arizona (because of course, where else would anyone go for vacation in early September?) and what with visiting all the relatives and noshing on the fabulous La Quinta continental breakfast every morning…

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I just never got around to blogging! So here ya go, after two weeks, my weight is:

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Which looks good, right? I mean, it’s actually LESS than when I left on vacation, right? Welllll … I have to confess there’s another reason I didn’t blog my weight last week.

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The truth is … my weight was over 190 pounds!!

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Yeah, it’s true. It was actually (sigh) 190.8! And it’s the first time it’s gone over 190 in a long, long time. And to be honest … I was kinda embarrassed about it. I mean, after all, I’m a rich, successful, marginally competent weight loss blogger!

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I know, I know! So I should have just posted it and let the chips fall where they may. (Mmm … chips … )

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So anyway, yeah, what with the train trip in August and the Arizona road trip last week, I kinda let my diet train get derailed.

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But I’m back on track now! I’ve been counting my calories (sort of) and exercising a lot (sort of) and I fully expect that NEXT week, I will have lost at LEAST one full pound (sort of)! And if I don’t, I PROMISE I’ll blog about it anyway, because misery loves company, right? I mean, not that I want you to be miserable, but hey, I’m sure as one of my many loyal readers, you’ll jump right off that cliff with me. Right? (ahem) I said, right?

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Well, um, that’s encouraging, I guess! Anyway, like I said, I’ll be back next week with another weigh-in, and NO excuses!

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See ya next Wednesday!

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On vacay! See you in September!

Hey everyone, I’m taking a little blogging break so I can enjoy the last few waning days of summer! Will be back and weighing* in on ALL sorts of topics sometime in September.

Hope you’re enjoying some well-deserved summer relaxation — if not, please accept my heartfelt sympathies! Maybe you can at least do a mini-staycay of some sort!

See you in September, everyone!

Why “Yogurtland” may not be your best choice for low-calorie summer eatin’

Today’s weight —

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is REALLY irritating me because for the past four days it’s been about 3 pounds LESS than that, and I was sure this morning was going to be in that same range! Wha’happened??

Well, according to my ol’ pal Jay’s article, “Why Am I Not Losing Weight? Every Possible Reason, it’s possible it could be a water imbalance or something. I mean, that trip to Yogurtland Saturday couldn’t have had anything to do with it, right?

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Oh, er, yeah, did I forget to mention that? Well, OK, I guess that could theoretically have something to do with it as well!

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Well, what can I say? It was hot, and they have cool stuff! OK, OK, I guess I should find some lower-calorie substitute! Maybe I can get some Chobani and toss it in our freezer. Not quite the same, but still cool, right?

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Anyway, I’ll do SOME kinda workaround, and meanwhile, at least I had a loss and not a gain, right? I oughta be happy about that, at least! And I am! It’s just that I haven’t had my morning covfefe yet.

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So I’m gonna go do that, and maybe feed the cat,

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so you go off and have a wonderful Monday, if such things are possible! See ya next week!

 

 

A Walk In Simi Valley

Hey, everyone, happy Friday! Remember a couple of weeks ago when I was tearing my hair out (figuratively speaking!) over my inability to come up with interesting (to me, anyway) new blog posts?

blogging is hard

And P.S. – thanks to blogger Penny Wilson (Penny Wilson Writes) for her great suggestions (even though I haven’t used ’em yet)!

Well, today, as I was strolling along the beautiful Arroyo Simi Greenway Bike Path (http://www.rsrpd.org/simi_valley/trails/arroyo_simi_bike_path.php) in equally beautiful Simi Valley, California, I had a great idea!

idea

I decided to start doing regular posts about the different places I enjoy walking and/or hiking, along with photos I take along the way!

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Anyway, I don’t know how long I can keep that up since as of now there’s really only a small number of places I visit regularly to walk. But hey, it’s a plan, and I love me a good plan, don’t you?

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So first of all, what is the Arroyo Simi Bike Path?

Sign photo

Well, according to the entry at Alltrails.com (https://www.alltrails.com/trail/us/california/simi-bike-trail) it’s an “11.3 mile out and back trail located near Simi Valley, California. The trail is good for all skill levels and primarily used for road biking. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on leash.”

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(or skateboard!)

Translation: most of the way, the mostly well-paved path runs on both sides of the Arroyo Simi, a flood channel which is actually full of water right now due to the recent rains. So you can see lots of interesting wildlife, like these giant geese who like to poop all over everything.

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Seriously, watch your step if you get off the paved path!

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And you may well want to get off the paved path, especially if you’re out with kids or dogs, because there are some nice little “pocket parks” along the way.

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So if you can deal with the ubiquitous poop, it’s a really pleasant walk and lots of interesting things to see along the way. Like this kinda sad-looking kid’s playhouse:

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I have no idea what the story is there, but I like to imagine that the kid who used to play in it grew up, got a terrific job, moved to the big city, and left the old playhouse behind, just in case things don’t work out.

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There’s a lot of mushrooms around

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And lots of gorgeous flowers, too!

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Although I didn’t have my (more or less) trusty pedometer with me on today’s walk, I estimate the walk from one pedestrian bridge to the next, and back again, is about 2 miles, maybe 2 and a quarter. All in all, a nice place for your daily walk or jog or…oh yeah, I guess you could ride your bike on it too. I mean, it IS a bike path!

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So there ya go, everything you ever wanted to know about the Arroyo Simi Greenway Bike Path – at least, it’s all I’m gonna tell you today! But if you want more details, here are a couple of good links to check out:

Hope you enjoyed today’s walk! See you on Monday for the weigh-in!

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Oops, I did it again!

…forgot to write my usual “Friday Five” blog post, that is!

Sorry about that! Oh well, you know what I was doing instead? I was getting my glasses adjusted — AND exercising, at (almost) the same time!

See, my glasses get out of kilter very easily, always tilting just a little too much to the right. So every once in a while, I have to get them adjusted.

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Usually, after the adjustment, I go out somewhere for a long walk. However, today it was threatening to rain again, and in case you hadn’t heard, we’ve had a LOT of rain here in sunny Southern California over the past week.

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So I decided to do my exercising indoors (like I wrote about in a previous post). And today, my indoor walk was at a big box hardware store called Lowe’s!

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It was great! I went in the front entrance and walked as far to one side as I could get (in this case, the lumber department). Then I just walked up and down each loonnnggg aisle, up and down, enjoying the relatively empty store (it was only about 9:30 a.m.) and the bouncy music being piped in overhead — for some reason I’m really enjoying the music they play in stores these days!

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Before starting, I set the timer on my phone for 30 minutes, and when it went off, I cheered (silently! there were security people around, after all!) — my 30-minute daily walk was done AND I still had a couple of aisles left! Which I went ahead and walked. After that, I left, buying a bottle of diet soda on my way out (so as not to be a COMPLETE mooch!) and went on to enjoy the rest of my day.

Oh, and my glasses? Feelin’ good! I think I can get through another few weeks before my next adjustment slash exercise excuse!

Anyway, sorry for the non-Friday Five-type post, but you know me, I like to shake things up every once in a while! See you Monday for the weigh-in (after which I’m takin’ a road trip, yay!)!

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Monday Weigh-In: Steady As She Goes!

Happy Monday, everyone! OK, let’s start right in with the weigh-in!

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Awesome! Down a full pound since last week! Although in the interest of full disclosure, I should point out that I did an *unofficial* weigh-in about an hour before the *official* one, and it was 178.4. So this week’s Hot Weight Loss Tip: weigh yourself EVERY HOUR on the hour till you get a result you like!

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Anyway, that’s my story and I’m sticking to it! Anyway, I’m gonna keep this short & sweet because today — after months of pretending it wasn’t there, despite the regular monthly payments being deducted from my checking account — I’ve decided to pay a rare visit to my second least unfavorite gym, 24 Hour Fitness in Simi Valley.

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The one with the pool!

Well, maybe, but given that we’re still having relatively subzero temperatures out here in the beautiful San Fernando Valley,

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I think I’ll stick to the indoor part! Anyway, I figure since I’m still paying to keep my membership alive, I should probably use it once in a while, just to make sure my fingerprints haven’t changed or anything.

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So that’s *my* Monday plans. What are yours? Whatever they are, hope your day — and your week — goes well!

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See ya Friday!