Holiday Challenge status: 137764 meters down, 62 km to go.

I have just checked the record: this will be my 8th time, not 9th as I wrote, to complete the full 200,000 meters. I did my first one in 2001; in 2006 I only did the 100km challenge because of lack of access to a rowing machine for a lot of the Challenge period, and in 2007 I had a bad cough and an injured foot and couldn’t row.)

I won’t finish as early as some years (in 2008 when I was doing marathon training, Thanksgiving (and thus the official start of the Challenge) wasn’t until Nov 27 and I *still* managed to finish by December 16!) But we will be splitting our time this holiday between our house, where we have an erg, and Ted’s parents’, whose gym has one.

The weekend was not exciting but productive; I erged, of course. I got my holiday cards done – a fairly minimal stack, since I didn’t sign up for any exchanges and didn’t send cards to a few people I like but never hear from at holidays or any other time. We got the house cleaned up further, and we now have only one stack of empty boxes, a few full ones of things we don’t use in odd not-too-visible corners, and the Giant Box Building of things we don’t use here in the storeroom, all labeled). I also got the jambalaya made in preparation for dinner guests tonight; Ted decided we were going to have bread pudding nad spent much time researching and making it. (I don’t entirely understand why, since neither of us is overly fond of the stuff, but I admit his is tastier than any I’ve had before. Tonight he will make the bourbon sauce for it (another giant research job, for some reason) and I will erg, shower, then cook the New Orleans Shrimp he asked me to make, and then we’ll feed the people.

I am hoping that a couple of low-stress weeks will help; I’ve been feeling kind of off lately. Just … not quite right. A little out of it, dizzy a few times (had a wave of it roll over me in the cafeteria once a couple of weeks ago), overwhelmed by crowds. It might just be general tiredness from the erging, stress from work, who knows. (But they had a free healthcheck at work and my blood-pressure *is* where it should be, so at least the Lisinopril is working. I have a home meter, but don’t trust it – and it’s definitely been reading well above the device at work today, so I feel reassured. Getting validation of my belief that the home meter reads high was actually the main reason I went. They also checked my BMI and body fat %, but I fail to understand why anyone with basic math skills and a scale (and for people who work in English units, knowledge of the metric conversion factors – and cm/inch and lb/kg are two I have memorized) needs to have that calculated for them. As for the body fat test, it was by impedance; I’ve been weighed by immersion twice in my life and both times the reading was several percentage points lower than the reading I got via either impedance or skinfold testing at that time.

I’m so looking forward to two weeks off work – add in Christmas, seeing family and staying in our own brand-spandy-new how and I am getting unreasonably excited about this break.