Hi everyone, I have missed posting and reading up on the blog. Even though I was gone, I did work hard to eat right and keep up with exercise. We had a "red eye" flight from Moscow and arrived home at 7 AM this morning.
I kept some notes of what I did each day, exercise and food points.
Friday, December 11
We got up early, and left for the airport at 5:30 AM. Our flight was on time arriving in Moscow. Our friend was able to borrow a car to meet us at the airport. Even still, we had to walk quite a bit, taking our luggage up to our room, shopping for groceries at an open market, finding the electric train station and inquiring about ticket prices. I got 40 minutes of walking in.
Saturday, December 12
We went to a mall! Yeah! I haven't been to a mall since our furlough over a year ago! I was able to go to an IKEA store for the first time. I did like it, but there were some things I would love to get, but no way to get them home! We were without a vehicle this day, so with walking to and from bus and electric train stops, metro, and shopping, I walked for 3 hours. Really, it was more like 5 or 6 hours, but 2 hours were very brisk with transport, to and from apartments, etc, and 1 counted 1 hour for all the walking we did while shopping.
One of my "good food" points today was from buckwheat. Russians really love buckwheat. They serve it like a cereal, and also as a side dish, where we would use rice or potatoes. Buckwheat is really healthy for you!
Sunday, December 13
We rode the electric train to our friend's town to go to church. The pastor of this church has experienced much persecution in his lifetime for the cause of Christ. His father spent 18 years in Soviet camps and prisons for being an active Christian and preaching. It was amazing to see the joy on the faces of the people who have endured so much for Christ, but are rejoicing in His hope, and the freedom that they have to openly worship now.
Lots of brisk walking on this cold morning! I walked for 1 hour. In the evening, we went to my friend's parent's house for a dinner. They had some interesting things to eat, including a "healthy choice" that I can't honestly say I hope to try again. I had seaweed salad. At least it was healthy!
Monday, December 14
Well, I believe we brought our Siberian cold to Moscow, as it was -25 this day. We went back to the same mall we visited on Saturday, but this time we had a car to use. We walked around in the mall and a grocery store, searching for things we can't get in Irktusk. I didn't really find much that we can't get in Irkutsk. Our friends' kids were able to stay with their grandparents for the evening, and we were able to go on a tour of Moscow! Traffic jams were everywhere. In Moscow police escorts stop traffic for the diplomats to get them quickly in and out of town, while everyone else waits for them. We got out of the car downtown, and walked around for a while. By the time we got back to the car, I was freezing! We drove to TGI Fridays, and had a great dinner with our friends. (By the way, one thing I don't like about winter here is getting "hat head hair" from having your hat smashed down on your head.)
Tuesday, December 15
We visited a mall again, and walked around while our friends' kids went ice skating at an indoor rink at the mall. I felt like I was speed walking trying to get to all the places on my last chance to shop at a "real" mall for a while. I walked for 1.5 hours on this day.
Wednesday, December 16
We had lunch with our friends, and then headed to the airport. With all the traffic, it took us 2 hours to travel a few miles to the airport. I ended up getting only 30 minutes of walking in. Fortunately, our plane wasn't delayed. We left Moscow around 8 PM, and arrived home this morning at 7 AM. The flight is only about 5.5 hours, but with the time zone changes, we lost several hours, including my night time rest. I have a hard time sleeping on planes.
Thursday, December 17
I'm finally home again! This morning it was -38 when we arrived home. We had to walk around a little outside, first from the airplane to the transport bus going to the airport, and then again after we collected our luggage, and were trying to find a taxi ride home. Our dogs and kids were so happy to see us, and we were happy to see them too! Even though we had a wonderful trip, I am truly glad to be home again. I was glad to get back to my aerobic routine. I did my Full Circuit video for 50 minutes, but I used my light weights for the entire routine. I was concerned about using the heavy weights after so many days of not doing aerobics. I didn't have any trouble keeping up with the exercises though. I guess that all the walking did help keep me in shape. I also had another good surprise this morning. I have dropped another kilo. My weight now is 53.5 kilos. (118 lb) I haven't done measurements yet. I will try to do those tomorrow morning, or maybe I will just wait until the final post to do it all. I'm kind of tired today. I've been working on getting laundry done. The kids did a great job of keeping up with things while we were gone.
Back to Crunching,