Starpaw's Sanctuary

The web home of Cat Skyfire and Starpaw the Bear
  • Monsieur D'Artagnan Iago Starpaw here, at your service. I am a bear. A traveling bear. I keep company with Miss Cat Skyfire, who also runs this site. After all, it's hard to type with fuzzy paws. Though the whole site is named for me, I'll only have a small part of it to showcase my fuzzy glory. The rest of it is all Cat.
  • Nebraska Renaissance Faire

    Posted By Cat on May 13, 2014

    Are you here because you met me at the Nebraska Renaissance Faire?  (Or, perhaps, another renfest).  Perhaps you typed in Starpaw.com from the What The Cat Made card.

    Either way, you’ve found me.  Cat Skyfire, aka Grumpy Cat or La Chat Grincheux at these events.

    Photos will be available soon in the Gallery (upper right corner).  And if you’re interested in items I was selling, simply shoot me an email and we’ll talk.

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    Ouch avoidance

    Posted By Cat on June 19, 2012

    Remember not to hurt yourself, or overdo it. Okay, the first one can be a challenge. But if you are feeling some pain, make sure you don’t do too much. Know your body and understand what the pain is telling you. And it’s perfectly okay to not do some exercises when something hurts.

    This morning, I woke up with my shoulder feeling sore. Chances are, I slept on it wrong. But when I lift my arm, I feel an unpleasant twinge. So I didn’t do the kettlebell swing today, or the pullup preps. I’ll make sure I’m healed first.

    Weight loss is a journey, try to avoid hurting yourself to get there.

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    196.8

    Posted By Cat on June 18, 2012

    So, I have had some more fat loss.  And some muscle gain.  It’s kind of nice to find those again.  Today on the treadmill, I found I’d gone from 2.0 mph to 2.2.  Yay.

    Is it easy?  Nope.  But it’s not as hard as it was.  Not having certain things in the house makes them easier to resist.  And the blandness of my diet, overall, makes it easy not to over eat.

    Next week, I see the doctor.  See how my A1C is doing, my real weight (from the medical scale estimate), and talk about reducing some of my meds.

    I’m still on track for 175 by the time I’m 40…end of September for those who are wondering when to send me a gift.  :)

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    Musings on fat loss

    Posted By Cat on June 11, 2012

    Side note before I start my musings:  I did say fat loss, rather than the traditional weight loss.  I’ve been reading a lot of different things, and one good thing I’ve read is to make sure you differentiate between weight loss and fat loss.

    Fat is the stuff we don’t want.  The stuff that makes us jiggle as we walk, and not in a good way.  Weight can include things we do want…and may even want more of.  A huge example is muscle.  We do want more muscle.  Not necessarily massive muscles, but muscle burns fat better than non-muscle.  It’s sort of what it does.  Some other weight that you may be fond of include your bones and organs.  Technically, I could lose weight by chopping off my leg.  I would, in fact, weigh less.  But that’s not exactly the way to go.

    Now for the musings.  I just got back from a nearly 2 mile walk, and now I’m sitting here sort of regretting the extra distance, mostly because my left ankle is telling me off.  (This ankle had a major sprain when I was 16 or 17 and has never really healed.)  In a few minutes, my hips will tell me rude things as well.  But I’m thinking about the decision to finally try to seriously lose fat.  To change my form.  Why now?  I’ve been fat for decades.  While those who knew me when I was younger may say I wasn’t that heavy, the pictures don’t lie.  I wasn’t 200 but I wasn’t anywhere near a healthy weight, either.

    And it occurs to me, in embarking on such a change, you have to also look at your psyche and why you’re doing it.  It has to be for yourself.  To do it for someone else never really works.  And it takes a major amount of willpower.  The willpower to say “yes, I will do these exercises” even when, at the heart of it, you don’t really want to.  The willpower to say “That’s all I’m going to eat” even though you could happily down another plateful.   The willpower to pass on things like dessert.  (Okay, not all the time.  It’s a diet, not a prison camp.)  But you know what I mean.  We’re well conditioned to sit on the couch.  It’s comfortable.

    My primary reason for starting this journey was because I’m tired of the two big fat rolls on my belly.  Because of how I’ve always worn my pants, the fat has divided into two rolls.  I honestly don’t mind my butt.  I can’t see it, generally.  Even my arm flab never really bugged me.  But those two rolls limit my ability to wear various clothes, and I’m tired of it.  They’re bigger than my boobs.

    But even as I realize I’m tired of what I’ve acquired, fat wise, I’m also looking at why I’ve gained the weight.  And I’ve had to come to terms with the fact that it was an insulating layer of protection.  I could fend off potential harm with it.  Sure, I had to use the phrase “more than a decade” to describe when I last had a date, but it also meant I’d never had the emotional pain that often comes with that.  Men didn’t see me.  They saw “a fat chick.”  Given my hairstyle and clothing choices, they probably went clear to “a fat lesbian,” which still kept them away.

    So why can I part with the fat now?  That would be Jeff.  There is someone out there, not directly related, who likes me…for me.  Not because of my looks, per se, but because of me.  My personality.  My good bits.  My bad bits.  There is someone I can offer the chance to hurt me more than anything, and know, absolutely, that they won’t take it.  Essentially…I don’t need the fat armor to protect me.  And so I can allow myself to shed it.

    Okay, enough of my psyche for one day.  There’s facebook games to go play.

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    On Diets and kings and cabbages

    Posted By Cat on June 10, 2012

    Ok, no cabbages.  Or kings.

    Last week, I weighed in at 199.  Today, I was 199.6.  Technically a setback, but this week has been a bit odd, food wise, with some dining opportunities.  While I definitely limited myself, I did technically likely eat more than I was “supposed to.”  But I’m not really bothered.  Each day is its own challenge.

    Also important, to me, is that I seem to have acquired a couple of muscles.  That one on the back of the arm has shown up.  I also think that, under the protective layer of lard, my abs are stronger.  I know my clothes are fitting better, and that I have more energy, and that is just as important as numbers dropping.  I have been walking more.  If I walk outside, I can do a mile point two or a mile and a half before my parts start to object.  If I treadmill, I can do about 16 minutes on ‘rolling hills’ at 2.2 mph.  (Rolling hills change the elevation between 0 and 3 every minute.)

    So, I can report overall progress.  Let’s see what next week brings.

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    Another diet update

    Posted By Cat on May 29, 2012

    So, officially, Saturday, I was down 1.8 pounds.  It may be a bit more since then, really, since I’m weigh the same thing while dressed.  :)

    I’m pretty sure I’m doing good on “not eating too many calories.”  It’s hard to tell just how many I “need” per day, that I can undercut safely, but I figure if I make 400 calories a meal, that’s still 1600 a day, and well under 2000.  (Note, this is without feeling particularly hungry, so I’m using that as a “I’m doing fine” aspect.  I’m also testing blood sugar periodically, and will take appropriate action should it seem too low.)

    I’m also trying to move more.  I still do the basic exercises, but I’m trying to do more walking or something, as well as a bit more work with weights.  Still seeking a 20 pound kettlebell.

    One person asked for some tips/motivation/etc.  One thing I suggest is get the tasty food out of the house.  Some things, I can easily resist.  There’s chocolate and jellybeans in a bowl in my house.  I generally have no interest in them.  (Yes, I love chocolate, but I prefer higher end stuff…which isn’t in that bowl.)  But the Lofthouse sugar cookies, which demand to be eaten in quantity?  I can’t have them here.  If I want to make cookies or brownies, I can, but most of them will need to go somewhere else.  I do my best to remove the higher temptations.

    Having an official cheat day does help a lot.  I can eat my Valentino’s that day (a local pasta buffet that’s really good).  I can have those chips.  That dessert?  So mine.

    That said, I’m also not necessarily depriving myself when I want something.  I am trying to watch portions, though.  Monday, Jeff and I went disc golfing, and afterwards, we got ice cream.  I didn’t get the uber size.  A small chocolate dip was plenty.  But it felt wonderful and cool after the sport activity.

    Right now, my biggest thing is really watching portion sizes, and having a realistic idea of what it will give me.  I could easily eat a large bowl of traditional pasta.  Instead, I make the whole grain pasta (which I’m not a huge fan of, but is slightly healthier), and only eat the appropriate amount.  I am eating more often – 3-4 hours, depending, but less quantity.  It also keeps me from that huge hunger we get from not eating between lunch and dinner (or supper, depending on where you are).  6-7 hours makes us hungry, and we shove food down faster than we should.

    My current goal is 25 pounds…down to 175.  If I want more of a stretch goal, then I’d like to hit that by the time I hit 40.  Which is at the end of September.

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    Diet Update

    Posted By Cat on May 23, 2012

    So, it’s been a couple weeks now.  Have I lost weight?  Maybe a pound.  I haven’t done a proper weighing, but have weighed myself still dressed.  (My formal weigh was without clothes.)

    I’m getting up easier, mostly.  That’s a hard one for me, still, because I like my bed.  A lot.  Staying in it is one of the joys of life.  Me, some kitties, and lots of sleep.

    I am doing better about getting to bed at a decent hour.  Not perfect, but I blame the Internet for that. :)

    The diet part itself…well, I’ve modified some more.  A mixture of four hour body, my dietitian 11 years ago, and calorie counting.  The key thing for me is I have cut out most sweets, despite my love of chocolate and all its friends.  I resist a lot more.  I bring my lunch, however dull, and don’t go out.  I eat every 3-4 hours, depending on how I feel.

    Saturday’s cheat day is still a life safer, though.  Because I can, if I really want to, go nuts.  And since I am a bit more committed to this effort, I also resist more normally.  For example, we bought some lovely brownies at the store yesterday.  I ate one.  Jeff took the rest home.  I could easily have eaten five more…I had the room, as it were, and it was tasty.  But I resisted.

    Fortunately, it’s summerish, and slushie season.  I make my own with Kool-Aid and splenda (an improvement over the sugar I used), and that satisfies some of my urges.

    I have a pair of almost perfect size 16 jeans waiting for me.  I long ago got rid of my size 24 jeans, but I want to go smaller.  175 is my next real goal.  When I hit 200, I promised myself a tattoo, but ended up with an ear piercing.  Maybe 175 will find me able to decide what I want for some body art. :)

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    Night 5

    Posted By Cat on May 10, 2012

    So, I ate a donut at work, late in the day. It was tasty. Then I wandered around the store trying to figure out what I wanted for dinner.

    This is one of the challenges. I don’t like beans. But I need to eat protein. But meat’s expensive. And sometimes, I admit, I’m tired of eating.

    Do I modify, and accept some meals may be proteinless, but keep down portions? Do I make myself eat?

    Right now, I’m eating a ham sandwich. I fell asleep when I got home. (Cuddle with kitties…zzzz. Especially when there’s not much to do. (Okay, there’s things i could do, but nothing that said ‘do this!’)).

    Not sure what I should do overall…

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    Argh!

    Posted By Cat on May 10, 2012

    It’s a food day at work.  I made chocolate cups.  (2nd attempt, this one worked, thanks to my sister-in-laws silicone baking sheet.)  Now i can try Mousse cups at some point.
    I did sneak some chocolate last night when I made them.  (Well, a cup broke…can’t…waste…chocolate…)

    So I come into work, for it is a Food Day.  Normally, breakfast things are scant, and people bring things for lunch that I don’t like much, so I’m fine.  No, today, there’s donuts galore, and beautiful bagels.  Argh!  Why doest thou torture me so!

    …so I’, about to eat my natural peanut butter sandwich.  All the protein, none of the taste.

    I did miss my morning exercises.  Instead of shoveling myself out of bed with the alarm, I sat up, yawned, and stared into space.  Then Nim, the Standoffish, decided to crawl onto my lap.  Can’t…leave…cuddling…kitteh…

    Anyway, that’s the update for the start Day 4.

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    Snickers Setback

    Posted By Cat on May 9, 2012

    I’ve been bringing my lunch.  Today, I brought the pasta, but forgot to have put something on it last night, meaning it’s more gluelike than edible.  So I didn’t eat it, and had some V8 instead.

    So it’s time for my lunch break.  (I had eaten before, but now is the official ‘leave your desk’ time.)  Feel funny.  Test blood.  A half hour after eating, and I’m hitting 88.

    Uh oh.

    Eat four Tootsie Roll Midges.  Go to lunch, return, still feeling off.  Blood is now 99, but is likely to start going down quickly.

    So, I got a Snickers bar from the vending machine, and am eating it.  (Or will, when it thaws enough.  It’s refrigerated.)  I picked it for the protein as well as the sugar, so hopefully that will help stabilize me.

    Irony: I’m breaking my diet and I don’t even like Snickers that much.

    At least, however, I’m breaking the diet due to health reasons, not just because I can.

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