Day 324–Finally!

Our skiing adventure has had its share of ups and downs, and then some. Day 1 was unbearably hot, with hardly any base and even less powder. Day 2 my ski boots fit so poorly (again, because I’m fat) that I was almost nauseated from the pain. Day 3 I got better boots, but it was a windchill of -15 on top of the mountain. My mustache literally froze, although I shudder to think where the liquid came from to make the ice. Day 4 we were exhausted from a great week at Keystone, it was ridiculously crowded, and starting to warm up again, turning all the fresh new snow into old slushy muck.

Day 5, however, was spectacular.

Going on a Wednesday when school isn’t out leads to no crowds.  Going after a couple of days of no crowds means the powder base was built up some.  Going after a couple of days of cooler temperatures means it wasn’t all slush and it resembled real skiing.  And going on a day where the high temperature was only in the upper 30s means it was just warm enough, and just cool enough, to make it perfect.  That isn’t to say it didn’t have its pitfalls…Abby had some boot issues and tweaked a knee on a wicked wipeout, and I got a little toasty while standing in the sun, but that was about it.  If this is our last adventure in Colorado, then it was the best possible way I can imagine to go out.

Breakfast–I have to admit, this morning I was the one moving slowly.  Usually its Abby (I think she would admit this. If not, our couch is quite comfortable for sleeping.) who keeps us behind, but today I just couldn’t get my butt in gear.  Part of this was the early waking hour, part of it was bad planning, and part of it was our psychotic cat who started whining at 5 am because she had eaten all of her food (fatty) and wanted more.  If she does it tomorrow, I’m locking her in the toilet. Not the bathroom, the actual toilet. I may lose a significant amount of blood trying to achieve this, but she deserves it.  Moral of the story: I had a peanut butter wafflewich in the car on the way to Keystone.

Lunch–We once again packed our lunches for the slopes, only to get a good sweat up and decide we wanted something with more substance.  So we decided to get Pizza on the Run, the unfortunate offspring of Pizza on the Plaza.  It’s unfortunate only because it lacks the ambiance of the original…PotP is overlooking Keystone Lake and the mountain ranges, PotR is overlooking a ski shop for (what appears to be) the Real Housewives of Summit County.  Not the same.  We had a Last Chance (pepperoni, mushrooms, onions, and italian sausage) and I ate much more than I should have. Needed energy for the runs!

Dinner–Spicy Southwestern Soup from Whole Foods.  It’s supposed to snow/sleet/wintry mix (what the heck is wintry mix that it can’t be described as sleet, hail, or snow?) tonight and tomorrow, so we decided to warm up a bit before it gets all crazy.  And its going to make for some wicked leftovers.  I added some summer sausage and diced asparagus and it made for an amazing bowl of soup…and I take my soup seriously.

Dessert/Snacks/Whatever–Throughout the day I ate a bag of gummi bears.  They provided a nice sugar boost while skiing and a good movie snack while watching LOTR: The Two Towers.  Haribo, I salute you.

Tomorrow: Warm fires, snowy days, and sleep. Lots of sleep. And maybe a workout if its not overly nuts outside.

Day 323–Back to Normal?

Today was probably the last normal day we’ll have in Colorado, and even this one was a bit strange.  Abby’s boards went really well, and she got done early enough that we were able to have dinner together too! Double win!  I slept in (until 8. What happened to me?) and was able to work out, get some reading done for my class (the ecclesiopolitical climate of medieval Europe…jealous?) and watch Meet Joe Black, which I’m fully prepared to be judged for. All in all, a pretty solid day.

Breakfast–Peanut butter and strawberry jelly wafflewich.  Always a winner, although tomorrow we’re going back to Keystone for one last day of skiing so I might make it three days in a row with the wafflewich. That’s a lot of wafflewichiness to handle all at once.

Lunch–Omelette with the last turkey burger from last night and some asparagus.  I also added a tablespoon of Sriracha to the eggs, so it was one of the better omelettes I’ve ever whipped up.  I was proud of myself.

Exercise–Confession: I didn’t actually work out last night. I felt terrible and didn’t want to push myself after the week of skiing.  Therefore, I made up for it today with a brisk walk/run and some heavy weight lifting.  I actually meant to not work out the day before skiing again, but then the weather turned and its supposed to snow 4 inches on Thursday and we’d prefer not to get stuck in that. So hopefully I’ll recover for tomorrow!

Dinner–Chipotle!  A burrito bowl with brown rice, black beans, carnitas, hot salsa, corn salsa, and lettuce. It was superb, and a pretty healthy way to finish off the day.

Dessert–Two cups of kettle corn. Deliciousness.

Tomorrow I’ll have my report from Keystone! Here come the slopes!

Day 322–Losing Altitude

It was weird to wake up this morning to no snow, no mountains, a relatively quiet apartment, and no skis. Unfortunately, this is a reality we’re going to have to get used to, as every day brings the idea “Today, we’re doing this, but next week we’ll be packing/driving/back in Texas.”  We will certainly miss Denver and Colorado, but the journey isn’t over yet!

If you’ve got a moment to spare tomorrow, Abby’s second part of the national board certification test is bright and early in the morning and thoughts and prayers would be appreciated!  I know she’s going to rock it, but after the part one fiasco we’d be grateful for all your support.

Breakfast–Peanut butter wafflewich.  We’ve also reached the point where we’re trying to empty out our fridge/freezer and make sure we have food to eat…but not too much.  It’s a tricky science. Luckily, we still have waffles.

Lunch–Chick Fila, requested by the wife.  I had a chargrilled chicken sandwich, fries, and because of the beauty of advertising, a peppermint chocolate chip shake.  Seriously…planned on eating healthy, ordered the grilled chicken, and then I couldn’t resist the awesome chocomint combination. It was delicious though.

Snack–Fiber One bar.

Dinner–Turkey burgers, marinated with soy sauce and Sriracha and baked beans. Again…had some beans, had some hamburger buns, and BAM! dinner is served. Cleaning out the pantry is fun.

Exercise–Even though my legs are still a bit wobbly, I went and ran for a bit and lifted some weights. I’ll rest tomorrow…maybe.

Tomorrow I get to spend the day alone with London, who has recovered from her trauma of being left alone and is back to being cute and ornery at the same time.  Hopefully she’ll be sociable tomorrow while I’m trapped here reading for my classes.

Day 321–Back From Keystone

Well THAT was a holiday.

Seven of us (Tom, Kathy, Katy, Grandma, Martha, Abby, and I) went to Keystone to enjoy a “relaxing” Thanksgiving break.  At least, that was the plan.  In reality, we ended up skiing every day, getting up early to take advantage of smaller crowds and better snow.  It’s been 3.5 years since I last skied, and that was a small “hill” in the Canadian Rockies.  The last time I really hit the slopes was 8 years ago, and it showed. There was considerable rust, which combined with some icy conditions to make things a bit hairy on the slopes.  I escaped with only two “falls” on the week: one where something felt wrong with my skis so I had a little sitdown in order to prevent injury to myself or others, and one where a lovely snowboarder attempted to run me over and clipped the front of my skis. All in all, it was a win on the slopes.

Our town home was amazing, with plenty of room for everyone a nice cozy fire to gather around when we got off the mountain. We worked on a puzzle the entire time (a 1000 piece puzzle that only came with 999 pieces. Curse you Terry Redlin!) and played a few games of 42.  As for eating…we tried to be healthy.  Pumpkin chili, beans with buffalo sausage, sandwiches for lunch, bacon and eggs and oatmeal before skiing, and of course trips to Pizza on the Plaza and Wolf Rock Steakhouse (where I had elk…it was delicious). With the calories burned (over 33,000 vertical feet!) I think we came out even. And my legs feel better than ever!

Breakfast–Before the slopes today I had a packet of Apples and Cinnamon Quaker oatmeal.  I miss having a microwave for that reason.  Nice and filling.

Lunch/Dinner–Our last trip to Beau Jo’s for this go-round in Colorado. We had the Sausage Combo and I’m pretty sure it was about my calorie allotment for the whole day, except that we planned on that being our main meal for the day and we burned about 700 calories while skiing.

Snack Before Bed–A bowl of Honey Nut Cheerios and a piece of cornbread with jelly. Magnificent.

Tomorrow is the beginning of the end…but in order to keep the happiness alive a bit longer, here are some pictures for your viewing pleasure!

Day 316–Whoops.

I’m going to be burning a LOT of calories this week.  Between the sweat (skiing when its 45 outside is going to lead to me overheating–bank on it) and the muscle work over the four days Abby and I plan to spend on the slopes it should be a great kickstart to getting back on track for working hard.  As you’ve probably noted, I’ve worked out the last couple of days and really tried to prime myself for the week, but I didn’t want to work out hard today, hurt myself, and mess up the week with family.

Unfortunately, I decided to go to the opposite extreme…I ate like the fat man I am.  Hence the whoops.

Breakfast–We had to take Abby’s car in to get it serviced, so I got up much earlier than normal to drive her to the dealership. When we got back, I really wanted to make breakfast for Abby…partially because we rarely eat breakfast together (I’m a bum.) and partially because it was her last day at work so it was a special day.  I made cinnamon rolls…which she refrained from eating like a good healthy person. I, on the other hand, indulged. Sorry to sound like a broken record, but whoops.

Lunch–New addiction = new problem. Lunch was Five Guys burgers…an absolutely delicious burger, great fries and more calories than I can afford to use up in one meal. Fail/whoops.

Snack–Fiber One bar! Not whoops!

Dinner–Rotini pasta, roasted broccoli, sauteed onion and zucchini and chicken-apple sausage.  It was delicious, and I only used one sausage link for the two of us and a smaller amount of pasta than usual. So today started out badly and then after I realized the error of my ways (or as my dad says, the error of my waist) there was a great uptick.  This weekend should be pretty healthy assuming I make good choices at restaurants but I know I need to keep my guard up and take advantage of the opportunities presented. I can do this.

Take this holiday to tell your loved ones how much you care, to take stock of how blessed we are, and to be mindful of exactly what God has done in our lives.  Happy Thanksgiving everyone, and God bless.

Day 315–Running Uphill

During my workout today I found myself getting tired more easily than usual, my legs hurt more than usual, and I was just plain exhausted much earlier than usual. It was mildly depressing until I looked down at the treadmill and a blinking number caught my attention.  I had absent-mindedly set the incline for my run at 4%…and it about crushed me.  Again, the point of these last few workouts has been to get me in better skiing shape, and destroying my quads is the best way to do that, but man…incline and running makes things much more difficult! (Duh.)

I also had a lovely bachelor day today because Abby wasn’t free for lunch and went out with the people from her office for a goodbye dinner tonight, so I was able to get some reading done, go grocery shopping, workout, start laundry…and its only 7:45. She needs to come home soon.

Breakfast–Honey Nut Cheerios.  Wasn’t feeling the toastwich and we were out of waffles (hence the grocery shopping) so Cheerios prevailed.

Lunch–I had been marinating a chicken breast in teriyaki sauce for a while, so I baked it and diced it up.  Half of it went on a salad, and half of it went into ramen.  They were both delicious, and would have sustained me for a while had I not exercised right after lunch. Oh well.

Exercise–Ran/walked/stumbled a couple of miles on a wicked incline and then lifted weights.  It’s funny, but I feel better on the days I work out. Shocking.  I also noticed I crave ice cream after working out…what up with that? Self-sabatoge.

Dinner–Two small (like 2 inch diameter) sweet potatoes, roasted, with sauteed mushrooms, anaheim pepper, and onion.  It was incredible and filling…its going in the repertoire as well. I just really like vegetables.

Tonight/tomorrow I’m making some pumpkin chili for the week and making final preparations for our awesome Keystone holiday. So tomorrow might be my last post for a while…don’t cry my followers. I’ll make it up with pictures and stories and, just because I love you, I’ll even try to not hurt myself skiing. All for you.

Day 314–Pi Edition

Yep. I did that…I’m a nerd.

Today began our preparations for our fantastic Keystone vacation.  We had some packing fun, which was actually way more chaotic than it should have been.  There were three piles of clothes: 1) Those going back to Texas early.  We’ve added some extra things to our possessions in Colorado so making some more room is paramount. 2) Those going to Keystone.  Packing for skiing is always a bit tricky because you have to pack for skiing and pack for after skiing and remember to keep all of it separate, otherwise you have to go home either naked or in dirty clothes. Not acceptable. 3) Those to be worn skiing the first day.  Abby and I plan on getting to Keystone, picking up our lift tickets, picking up our skis, and hitting the slopes, so I have to make sure I don’t pack away everything to be worn that first day. Made for piles everywhere, but it was fun. And I might have actually gotten everything organized.

We also went grocery shopping for the week. It’s interesting shopping for that many people, especially when you don’t know exactly how many attendees you’re going to have.  I am looking forward to some nice comfort food in the snowy mountains though!

Breakfast–Multigrain Cheerios. More variety…go me!

Lunch–Chipotle.  Originally we were going to have pizza, but ever since the Biggest Loser incident I’ve felt really bad about indulging, even with yesterday’s dessert debacle. And by debacle I mean deliciousness. Whatever. I had a bowl with brown rice, black beans, fajita veggies, chicken, both hot and tomatillo salsa, and lettuce. I enjoyed it immensely.  This also brings up a weird revelation about Denver: the place has very few good “hometown” restaurants.  I mean Beau Jos and Tokyo Joes are fantastic (and both named Jo(e). Which is odd.) but other than that we haven’t found much. For Mexican we go to Chipotle or On The Border, for burgers we go to Five Guys, for Italian we eat in…there just isn’t a longing to go anywhere.  In short, we miss Texas food.

Dinner–Peanut butter and strawberry jelly sandwich and some jalapeno chips.  Abby went to see Breaking Dawn (judge away world) and so it was me and a M*A*S*H mini-marathon. Peanut butter was good and cheap.

Exercise–I went and ran about 20 minutes on a 4.0 incline (trying to get my quads in good shape for skiing) and then lifted some weights.  Solid workout…skiing is still going to kick my tail.

Tomorrow is another night alone, but at least I’ve got The Sing Off, Castle, and MNF to keep me company.  And my psychotic cat. Cue Will Smith singing, “Just the Two of Us.”