I’d Like a Side of Lead With My Muscle Milk


Lead in Supplements

Feeding me is not fun. I’m the first to admit it. I’m difficult. I only occasionally eat meat or dairy products that are conventionally farmed. I’ll eat conventional broccoli and cauliflower but neither lettuce nor apples. I just don’t want a side order of pesticides. I will recoil in horror if you offer me or my children a conventional soy or corn product and I’d rather starve than consume high fructose corn syrup.

I accept that I’m a little different and I try to eat out without pushing my wackiness onto other people (besides my children) so when I saw this sign at the gym today I had to do a little reality check. The picture is blurry so here’s the content of the sign with no emphasis added:



The powder supplements and powder dietary replacement products for sale in this club contain chemicals known to the State of California to cause cancer and birth defects or other reproductive harm. 

Although these powders and supplements comply with the guidelines established by the United States Food and Drug Administration, they do contain trace amounts of naturally occurring minerals and other chemicals, including lead.

Be informed!  Read the warnings on all products before making your purchase or to learn more visit www.oehha.ca.gov, and www.24hourfitness.com/prop65. 

I’m not even sure how to make sense of this. Wouldn’t it be better to only sell products that don’t come with cancer and birth defect warnings?

Training With RA Update


It’s come to my attention that I’ve mentioned my training with Loren a few times, and I’ve even shared a video with you that will explain why I’m giving up on flip flops forever, but I haven’t really shared with you some of the wisdom that I’ve acquired over the last three weeks.

Exercising with arthritis is like fast forwarding your joints about 40 years. The elliptical that used to be your BFF for low impact days actually hurts your hips. HIPS, like the thing my grandmother broke.

Want to lift weights? Forget about it on a rainy day, my hands are simply not up to the task.

The first week that I worked out with Loren I was just trying to find my rhythm. I’ve become competent in a few basic exercises so that now we can get through a circuit. Although I clearly chose the trainer that’s best for me I noticed that all the trainers at 24 Hour Fitness are using circuit training to some degree. There’s one guy who is always there at the same time as me and his trainer is either trying to make him Mr. Universe or trying to kill him. They do just about everything I do except with massive amounts of weight and he’s got like no body fat.

Circuit training is when you go from one exercise to another and keep your heart rate up. It sort of kills two birds with one sweaty stone. It’s an aerobic workout and it builds strength.

If you have RA like me working with a trainer might be more necessity than luxury. It’s very important to build strength and to keep unnecessary weight off your frame. Our joints are wearing out faster than people without Rheumatoid Arthritis so we have to be proactive in protecting them.

There are two things Loren and I have been focusing on: core strength and balance. These are my two least favorite things because they are hard for me. I’m like everyone else, I like to do the stuff I’m good at and I love to avoid the stuff that challenges me.

One of the circuits that I do for core consists of the following three exercises: Russian Twist, plank and V-set. I do 40 of the Russian Twist, 40 seconds of plank and then 40 seconds of V-Sets. Then we repeat that two more times for a total of three runs through the circuit. I often do this first with Loren BUT I don’t meet with him until I’ve done 10 minutes of cardio, so it’s not from cold. This is a great circuit to do at home and I’ve included images of a modified plank. RA hands and wrists just aren’t up to the task of supporting my whole body weight.

I’m including two pictures and a video of me exercising that are extremely unflattering. I do everything for you people.

This is plank for RA.


My elbows are under my shoulders and my heels are at a 90 degree angle. I’m probably not doing this perfectly so I’ll ask Loren to make a quick video of the three exercises together. I’m supposed to be squeezing my tush but I’m not ready to guarantee that I was. Also, it’s really hard for me to do this without holding my breath. I need to work on that.

This is what a V-Set looks like

Basically you keep your feet up and your core engaged while pulsing your arms up and down. It is positively exhausting and my form falls apart quickly. It’s fantastic to have a trainer for this exercise.

Here’s a video of the Russian Twist. I want to add a disclaimer that says something to the effect of my belly is all scrunched up so it looks extra fat… but the reality is that my belly could go down a bit. So I’m going to suck it up and cry mean girl if anyone but me mentions it.

While Mr. G was at the Office I Brainwashed Our Son


At 8.45 last night I plunked myself down on the family room sofa and sort of pointed at the Chinese takeout. “Feed yourselves. I’m pooped.” Oh, and then I sipped a little Pinot while snuggling the dog.

Mr. G grinned at me and wondered aloud why I was so tired and he was still chugging along. He mentioned something about leaving the house while we were all still sleeping and Alexander chimed in.

“Mom doesn’t just sit and type you know. She types in the morning and then she makes us food and gets our clothes and buys us things and makes dinner and today she drove us everywhere. Mom works harder than anyone.” He was petting the cat and smiling at me, like we won something.

Not exactly everywhere but that boy might just get an extra allowance this week.

“Do you think I sit and type all day?” Mr. G asked.

“Well on the days you make TV you might work harder than mommy but only on those days. When you’re in the office typing with your friends I don’t think it’s harder.”

“What did mommy do today?” Mr. G asked.

“Well I  brought your children to school and then went to the drycleaner. I came home and tidied the house and then had a conference call about this thing that I’m not quite ready to talk about yet, and then I wrote for a few minutes and then I had a call with Momversation and how I might make videos with them again. And then I had to go to the gym. I picked up Alexander from school and brought him home for a snack and washed my face and some of the funk off. Then we got back in the car and picked Jane up because her school volleyball practice was over. We went to Panera and the kids got sandwiches while I grabbed a jalapeno bagel. Panera is for goyim. Then we went to Sprint to get new phones but we were too close to 6 so we just reserved them for a pickup tomorrow. I dropped Jane off for her club volleyball practice, picked up the dry-cleaning, looked at the refrigerator and grimaced. I decided to order Chin Chin and ran out to pick it up while Alexander luxuriated with Minecraft. I ran home from Chin Chin at 8.30 because I didn’t want to wait for Jane’s volleyball to end at 8.45 and give you guys cold fried rice. Of course when I was around the corner from volleyball at 8.40 I got a call from Jane checking on when I’d be there because it ended at 8.30 and of course Chin Chin is just around the corner from Volleyball. That’s what I did.” I’m pretty sure I only exhaled twice while talking.

“How was the gym?” Mr. G smirked.

“It was WORK. I’m blogging about it! I even made a video, well I made the video with my iphone but it’s still a good video.” And he’s looking at me funny now so I decide to take my poodle, my wine and my nook and to head upstairs for a hot bath.

Oh, and here’s the video. You know you want to see the man who has been torturing training me.

We got Alexander to bed and Mr. G came into the bathroom to chat with me while I soaked. We had a good giggle… I’ve got that boy fooled. Anyone who thinks that hanging out with these two kids all afternoon is work… well, they’re just wrong.

One Week of Working Out Followed by Some Weekend Sabotage


Last week I worked out with Loren Monday, Wednesday and Friday. Loren is this mass of energy with a booming voice and the unique ability to get me through a circuit with tons of sweat and no tears.

Monday was the first workout and although I’d thought of myself as being pretty active I was winded and even queasy at some points. Loren was patient. I was embarrassed.

Then he told me about some of his other clients, two were more than 350 pounds when they started with him. I stopped feeling embarrassed. It doesn’t matter if you’re losing 15 pounds or 150 you’re going to look a little funky at the gym. Oh just disregard that. It totally matters if you’re looking to lose 15 or 150. 15 is a cakewalk compared to 150. I should just quit my whining.

Wednesday I was much better about drinking more water before I came in. I felt a tiny bit sore but strong. I worked my butt off and began peppering Loren with questions about his personal life. Oh you have a dog? AND a cat and she bites you when you cheer for the Lakers? We’ll have to fix that. Your wife has a really interesting job.

Basically I walk into the gym and I’m like, Loren, entertain me! Tell me about your dog and your cat and your wife so that I don’t really feel these horrible core exercises and why can’t I touch my toes I do yoga all the time? And it really is just one sentence.

I make it a rule to not be in heels all day long and Loren asked me about flip flops. Uhhh… guilty. He explained that flip flops actually shorten the hamstring and calves and gave me two great stretches to do when I’ve been wearing flip flops. Obviously I’m pitching the flops for flats this summer.

Friday was also a great day at the gym and I actually felt like I knew what I was doing again. It was the right amount of soreness and my belly was feeling less like a belly and more like a core. I was all I am gym woman hear me roar… and then it fell apart.

I left the gym Friday morning and met Logan to pick up some DVDs he made for the kids at school. We met at Aroma café where I could have skipped eating but instead ate a massive breakfast burrito AND potatoes. I ran home… okay drove, and cleaned up for lunch with Gib. Again, I wasn’t all that hungry and a salad would’ve been fine but I ended up getting a cheese plate at Delphine and wiping said plate clean. From there Gib and I went to Beard Papa at Hollywood and Highland to pick up cream puffs for my kids and his family.

I need you to know that I did NOT eat a cream puff. This is my only victory.

Friday night we went to see The Hunger Games because Mr. G’s boss said that everyone in the department should see it. Although I enjoyed it immensely it’s not great filmmaking. It’s like Aldous Huxley for Dummies. In any event after a week of three training sessions and a two and a half hour tennis match on Thursday (yes I did win, thank you for asking) I went and sabotaged myself with a weekend of gluttony.

Saturday morning was fine, but nothing to be proud of and Saturday night was just an embarrassment. We went to Morton’s with the Tarquinios and relished in being the young’uns in the restaurant. Four of us made our way through 50 ounces of beef, creamed corn, potatoes au gratin, asparagus and three types of dessert. We ate the breadsticks, ordered cocktails and still polished off a bottle of wine.

I woke up Sunday feeling a little bloated and headachy. Fortunately for me sports kept getting canceled and didn’t leave my bedroom until about 10.30. When I did leave it was to eat. Of course. I met some of the ladies of LA tech for tea Sunday afternoon and Serena and I polished off a giant tray of high tea sandwiches and desserts. Serena will stay skinny.

Of course I went home for an hour and then to dinner at another friend’s house where desert was red velvet cake.

This week I’m quitting sugar.

I should be ashamed but I swear to all that is holy, I loved every bite.

I Am Fat


I’m not like exploding my clothes fat, and you might not even look at me and be like, “there goes a fat chick.” But I’m fat.

I’ve never been this big without having a baby in my belly and this is a problem that needs to be arrested before it can blossom into a bigger one.

I’ve had this slowdown of exercise in the past year or so but I haven’t slowed down my eating. It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to see the problem here. I’ve thought about dieting and I’m using the VEEP plan with some success but I wake up in the morning thinking Chicken and Waffles! I’m going to take the kids to Roscoe’s because Mr. G has his man-date tonight. I seldom get out of bed before I plan my lunch and dinner and trust me when I tell you that breakfast is also good.

I guess you could see where this might put a few pounds on the old girl.

In any event I need some help fixing things so I asked 24 Hour Fitness if they’d get me a trainer. I’ve been going to 24 Hour Fitness since Alexander was about a year old and I used to be a much more diligent gym member. Actually it was easy because Alexander so loved the daycare there that I’d end up trying to fill up two hours with work out stuff(it was $4 for two hours and he’d cry his eyes out when it was time to leave).

It took a few weeks (two months really) but they were able to find a trainer who really understands RA and has been a trainer for 25 years. Unfortunately he isn’t at my gym, he’s at a gym closer to the kids’ school. It actually replaced my favorite grocery store so walking into it felt like I was cheating on my favorite grocer, you know, the one who sharpens your knives for you while you shop even though it’s supposed to take 24 hours. That grocer.

Can I tell you that this gym is light and bright with new equipment and a locker room that is immaculate and dry. The manager is a new dad with 17 month old twins and we talked babies and poop and he bragged about his wife, and I got to thinking that I’d like to get back to a place where Mr. G could brag about me.

I spent an hour with the trainer today and he knows how much I weigh… which means I’m going to have to be nice to him. We’re going to start with sessions post Oprah so that we can get a good momentum. I know a lot of bloggers will share the numbers. I’m not sure I’m ready for that but I can tell you that there are 15 pounds that really need to go.

I think I’ll feel better when we just get to working out regularly because this planning and thinking about it just makes me hungry.