I was able to break out of the declining skid I’ve been in for a couple of weeks and get back on track. But, man! I had to really work at it! I mean 5 days of Stepmania and mowing the lawn on Saturday. Lawn mowing is still a staple of my exercise routine but that’s going to suffer when the grass stops growing. Things will get tough over the holidays!
I finally found the ultimate in music, which is the Maximum Workout CD. Every song/mix is 130-140 BPM which is just exactly where I like it. I had it going while mowing and finished in almost 1/2 the time it normally takes me! I think I lose weight just listening to it! So I spent the day (and all night) laying down step tracks to it. I’m using a special program to do it that pretty much takes all the CPU it can get and still takes an hour for each song to compile. But the charts are going to be challenging and awesome.
I started this on the cheap by downloading all the free stuff (program and songs) from the Stepmania site. I bought a couple of cheap mats, from ebay and I was totally on my way. However, as my skill level has increased, I’ve gotten more into it and there have been some increased costs. The biggest, by far, is the new music. Once I learned how to create my own simfiles, I started looking for music I really liked. I liked many of the songs downloaded from the Stemania site, but there were a bunch I didn’t like at all. It’s been a blast rediscovering some of the techno stuff from the 80’s and also looking at some groups in a similar genre as DAF that I hadn’t heard of.
The result has been ordering a number of CD’s from Amazon. Your tip-of-the-day is to always order from the used section if possible, as those folks rely on ratings just like ebay, whereas Amazon has gotten lackadaisical in their service. Their delivery time, frankly, sucks. “Super saver” shipping = “Super Slow.” You’ll be waiting weeks and maybe months. The used stuff comes pronto and usually for less.
I also bid on some new mats. The cheap ones were good to start off in but as I get to high levels with faster foot work, they tend to slide all over the place and curl up. I bid on a pair of Red Octane mats and actually won that auction for less than $50! So theoretically, I could sell one back and recover my costs since they retail at 2x that for just one. But you see that while it’s inexpensive compared to other exercise/recreation routines, it can start to become moreso. Just check out the prices on metal dance pads and you’ll see.
I’m feeling pretty good about the weight loss business as it’s been maybe 20 years since I’ve been this low. Getting below 200 is my main goal and then I’ll see about maintaining while building a bit of muscle mass. Right now I’m in a race to see how low I can go before the holidays, weight wise. At the same time, I’m looking at increasing my speed and skill with Stepmania so it helps to have these goals working in tandem. Less bulk = more speed and endurance and higher scores = more muscle tone = more weight loss = less bulk. In behavioral terms, it’s an elegant cycle of reinforcement and consequences that sets up an antecedent for more exercising behavior. I’ve got a video game, some techno music, a bit of computer wizardry… In short, this program really hits my geek buttons!
I’m probably boring you non-geeks to tears, along with a bunch of fellow nerds because I’m not writing anything about sex. Truth is, I’m pretty much diverting myself from the whole sexual arena through this other diversion. Avoiding in the classic style of the word. But I feel like I’m being productive and not pressuring anyone while working off my own edge/urges. The cage play was basically ramping me up which is okay when frustration is the goal. But now I’m working it off, and lately feel less uptight about whether sex is on the menu or not. Since it’s clearly not, I’m becoming less stressed over it. I have other things to occupy my energy and time that involve a lot less stress.
I’ve given some thought to that rhetorical question XH had in in his “Disfunction” post which was “Why are you so HL, anyway?” Other than the fact of being a healthy, normal male, I really don’t have a good answer to that. Why would I want to make it with someone who acts like an advance or invitation from me looks like rape? No thanks. Perhaps this will be one of those issues that we, as a couple, just sort of outlast, outplay or outwit. Or maybe not. We’ll just have to see.