Wednesday, July 27, 2011
It's demoralizing, that's all. To go several days and then have to start back at Day 1 is demoralizing to me, and we can't have any of that. More specifically, I can't have any of that. I thrive off of results, accomplishments, things I can be proud of, and I don't typically respond well to punishment, guilt, beratement, etc. Who does, really? And feeling guilty or freaked out or scared about my weight problem has done about all it's ever going to do for me, believe me!
I'd be much better off, I think, focussing on the good things. Yes, I did cheat a little on Sunday night and quite a bit on Saturday night! The good thing is that I stayed on whole 30 the whole rest of the week. The other good thing is that I lost a pound this week. The other good thing is that Saturday marked the commencement of the dreaded "monthly visitor," which means that I should have been bloated, horribly cranky, tearful, and shoving junk in my face ALL week last week and into this week. Instead, I did not retain any water, my cravings were vastly reduced and (while intense) quickly satisfied, and I was a little grouchy Saturday (NOTHING like I usually am at that time). I could really go on and on about the benefits of eating Paleo / Primal / Whole 30 / Whatever you wanna call it. It's wonderful.
The off-roading is the tricky part. The cheating. I read the Whole 9 blog entry about it, and it's very sensible advice. It's not exactly right for me, though. They say in one of their many articles on the subject that the only good reason, and it is a good reason, to cheat is mental health. So, what is it exactly about a cheat that I need? I need a minute to not care. I don't want to pull out a flowchart, I don't want to have the gluten-free pizza, I don't want to ask the waiter what the ingredients of the brine were. I want to not care. Just for a minute. I TOTALLY agree with what they say about not scheduling cheats, and I TOTALLY agree with what they say about having a cheat 'item' or 'meal' and don't turn it into a whole cheat 'day.' Having said that, I will say that it's a slippery slope. An item can turn into a meal that can turn into a day that can turn into a lifestyle. I know that I am fighting, seriously fighting, to find a balance here. BUT, I don't think continuing to do "12 weeks challenges" or "Whole 30" or any other little chunks of time is really going to get me to nail that balance down. I eat a Paleo diet. All the time. Except sometimes I cheat. Hopefully not too often.
30 Day Song Challenge
Day 19: A Song From Your Favorite Album
"The Beast and Dragon, Adored" by Spoon (from Gimme Fiction)
Fucking brilliant song, brilliant album. It was my favorite album as soon as it came out in 2005, during what I consider the most visceral time of my life. Good music was better during that time. This one blew me away.
Friday, July 22, 2011
It's going fine so far, but man am I ever tired today! I guess I'm always a little tired on Friday, but I started to feel sleepy on the way home from work yesterday, and then I slept in a little this morning due to my inability to be awakened. And now I'm just beat. I need my exercise back! I'm actually kind of jonesing to go back to fitwit. And I've always done my best at my workouts there, but I have a renewed spirit to actually really work and improve my performance. God, it just helps so much. More than anything, there's a scheduled time and place that I *have* to go. This past 2 weeks I've been dedicated to try and workout a lot, intentionally giving myself some extra rest days, but if left completely to my own devices I just don't get up and go. I'm going to the kettlebell class again tonight with one of the girls from fitwit. Then if the weather holds out I'm supposed to go on a long urban hike with my bff. We'll see how the rest of the weekend pans out. Also I had a slight headache on Wednesday that could have been from sugar withdrawal. It probably was. But it wasn't too bad.
Yesterday I wore a dress to work that I couldn't fit into earlier in the season. Hooray! I love little victories. Every pound that comes off is such a little gift to me. I love each and every one of them when they go. The shirt I'm wearing at work today was from last summer and it looks too big and kind of ridiculous on and I'm just workin' it. Also this week for some reason people decided to start noticing that I've been losing weight, and I've finally stopped trying to find a problem with that. It's great! I love it! It's weird that I had to lose 30 pounds first, but shit, I'll take it.
Also, I had a very psychological accomplishment recently... Finally, somehow, I seem to have internalized the concept of a "small cheat". I'm not great at it yet, but I'm getting much better. By "small cheat", I mean that just because I have pizza for lunch doesn't mean I have to have frito pie for dinner. It's not over if I slip, in other words. I always understood this on some level before, but it's always been a really slippery slope for me. It probably still is, but I've just felt more willing to return to my Paleo diet right after a slip or cheat now than I have (with whatever kind of diet) in the past.
30 Day Song Challenge
Day 20: A Song That You Listen to When You're Angry
"5 Years" by Bjork
Man, this song says it all. And so hugely empowering.
Tuesday, July 19, 2011
Day 2 of the Whole 30 - check. Did very well today. I didn't get any exercise, mainly because I wanted to give Kevin a break from me running off somewhere all the time. But, I ate perfectly well. Meat, veggies, fruit.
How do I get back to that place? I did well today, and maybe I should just take it one day at a time, but I don't have the same clarity and motivation I had at that time. Maybe I should schedule another dunk in the body fat tank in, say, 3 months. Maybe there's something else, tangible, real that I could win. Not a long-term-far-away thing like reaching my goal weight in a year, and not something nebulous like 'lifelong health' either. Maybe I need to just place some damn bets.
30 Day Song Challenge
Day 21: A Song You Listen to When You're Happy
"Three Little Birds" by Bob Marley
There's a reggae show on the local college radio station on Sunday mornings. It always coincides with the happy vibe of my little family, the smell of coffee and bacon, and an easy feeling of not having to really be anywhere at any particular time. This is one of my favorites, and one of the happiest.
Monday, July 18, 2011
Why did you give me the strength of ten men unless faced with cheese dip? To which I give in every time like a mexican kitten?
So, week 5 of camp, I'm feeling good, strong, healthy, looking forward to the two-week break, but still planning to get some good fun activity in there just to make sure I keep my metabolism cranking. Then on Friday, my foot started hurting. I thought it might be plantar fasciitis (heel spurs), which sucked, but I iced it, massaged it, and carried on. Tuesday morning (after the holiday on the 4th), it was still hurting, but I went to fitwit anyway. Then it started really hurting. The thing is, with heel spurs, you usually are in agony when you first step out of bed, but after warming it up a little, you're good to go. In my case, it was much better after resting in the morning, but got worse as the day went on. I was icing, massaging, stretching, and taking advil. I had to skip fitwit on Tuesday and Thursday. I called my doctor, who didn't have time to see me, but she said it might be fractured so I might as well go to the ER anyway. They told me it wasn't broken, but I should stay off it and see a podiatrist. Great. I saw my regular doctor the next morning and she gave me similar advice, but a referral to a closer podiatrist. So then after I spent $100 on seeing doctors, it just magically got better and went away.
Of course it did.
But, in the mix there somewhere was a bit of a paleo meltdown. I slipped, fell, cheated, whatever you want to call it. It snowballed. I started exercising again last Wednesday with an off-week workout. Saturday morning I took a yoga class, and lastnight I went roller skating for the first time in I think about 20 years. (That was incredibly fun, by the way). But I just couldn't pull my diet together.
So, I'm heading down the path again today... wish me luck. I had an apple and almond butter for breakfast with some iced black coffee. I also ate about 8 strawberries this morning. For lunch I had a salad with ham / salami, marinated mushrooms, spring lettuces, and a little balsamic. I got hungry again shortly after and had 2 spoonfuls of almond butter and about 1/4 cup of dried papaya. I'm sure my carbs are way off the meter already, but this isn't about counting carbs, right? It's about following the Whole 30. I was super tempted to eat a Lara Bar, but no, no fake food either. Good for me. I have a big pork roast cooking in the slow cooker at home, which I will shred and serve with squash for dinner. It looks kind of good, but I have to say I've been fooled by pork roast many times. Actually this time I'm trying it with a half picnic. It turns out picnic means something totally different than eating your food on a blanket in the grass.
And tonight I'm going to work out at a kettlebell gym. If you haven't read this hilarious piece on kettlebells, you really need to. It makes me laugh out loud every time I read it. But anyway, some of the girls from fitwit are going, so I figure I'll try it out. My goal for this week is to get at least 3 great workouts, and to try to do something active every day.
I'm so mad at myself! I should be so much closer to my goals by now!
30 Day Song Challenge
Day 22: A Song That You Listen to When You're Sad
"Tamacun" by Rodrigo y Gabriela
Wow, this was a hard one for me. I don't usually go straight to music when I'm feeling sad, and I would have to say that it would depend on what I was sad about. I don't find it helpful to play funny or otherwise happy-making music when I'm sad because that's too much of a transition, too fast. The worst kind of sadness is silent despair. If the situation has gotten so bad that you're out of tears, then it's so hard to work through it. Or, if it hasn't come to tears yet, same thing. So, I guess the best thing for me is to work it up into something tangible, and hopefully redirect it somehow. When I listen to music like this, it tends to skew me emo - so passionate, but also wordless. It can help break down sadness into frustration and anger, so that I can at least work those parts out of the sadness, if they are in there. Plus the beat just gets me moving, and focused. You'd have to be dead to not want to move when you hear Rodrigo y Gabriela. I find anger and frustration easier to cope with than despair.
Friday, July 1, 2011
The key to paleo success for me is to make something delicious all the time. Oh, and by the way, my team went out to eat at a mexican place and I still stuck to my whole 30, just eating fajita steak and veggies. This morning I drowned an apple in some almond butter. Then tonight I made this and it was soooooo amazingly good. I also made some radish and leek side and it tasted like ass. Oh well, live and learn. I gotta go pick up a bunch of fresh fruit tomorrow - it's crucial!
The 30 Day Song Challenge
Day 23: A Song That You Want Played at Your Wedding
Etta James - "At Last"
Oh no. No more weddings over here. One marriage is enough punishment for one lifetime. Do. Not. Get. Me. Started. But, for the sake of the challenge, I've channeled the 4-year-old version of myself (fresh from the Cinderella lie) and consulted her. This was her selection.
Friday, June 17, 2011
The Paleo issue I want to kind of address today is all the TIME involved. I read something today in sparkpeople from one of the members who said, "Slow food is good food." So true! It seems like whatever your diet is like, the more TLC you put into it, the better it tastes, and with the Paleo diet, since all the food is unprocessed, you have to do all the "processing" yourself. Here are some ideas I've been working with, feel free to pitch in other ideas...
First, crock-pot cookery rules. When preparing a meal for my family, it's usually a game of odd timing. I cut, sautee, chop, brown, rub, etc., but it's not always a do-one-thing-right-after-the-next deal. So I've found that I can actually save time if I make two meals at once when I'm in the kitchen. This also saves on dishwashing time by using the same knife, cutting board, etc. wherever practical. When you're done prepping the crock-pot meal, you can just put it in the fridge and then in the morning, pull it back out and turn it on before you go to work. Then when you get home it's all ready to go. Paleo Mama has a good page of Paleo crock-pot recipes.
Another thing that's really helpful if you work in an office like I do, is to set up your office or cube with gear. Hopefully you have a fridge and microwave in a break room somewhere you can use, but if not, you can get an inexpensive small fridge on ebay. You'll also want to have plates, cups, dish detergent, napkins, knives, spoons, and forks tucked away somewhere. I work in a secured facility, so I'm stuck with plastic knives. They totally suck for cutting, but I guess it's better then trying to hack at stuff with my keys! You'll also want to keep some supplies on hand there, like salt, pepper, lemon juice, almond butter or sunbutter, vinegar, etc., because it will save you time and effort dragging stuff back and forth from home. I used to have a hot pot also, but I didn't wind up using it as much as I thought I would. I'm practically a master at meal creation at my desk... Sad but true. I'm so busy at work, and I'm similarly so busy at home. So, I just bring the food and assemble it while I eat, which often involves a lot of prep. I eat a lot of salad for lunch, usually topped with some kind of awesome MEAT. Leftovers are another great option.
Food processors are great for some things, but for mincing vegetables (even garlic) they really don't save any time in the long run. You get better at chopping the more you practice, and when I use a food processor, there is time spent assembling, disassembling, and cleaning the thing. I don't get it out unless I really need it!
Of course, the grand time-saver will always be muti-tasking. I can be prepping food while I'm on the phone (even a conference call). I can be peeling and slicing things while talking to Kevin or the kids. I don't watch tv too much, but if you do, that would be a good time to work on food prep as well.
30 Day Song Challenge
Day 24: A Song That You Want Played at Your Funeral
"Requiem in D Minor" by W.A. Mozart
I've heard a lot of people say that when they die, they want their friends and family to have a party, remember the good times, laugh, think of them fondly, play joyous music, and focus on how he / she has gone to a better place. NOT ME. I want hundreds of people at my funeral, and I want them all to be utterly inconsolable. I want loud wailing. I want fainting. I want sobbing. I want people to throw themselves over my casket and into the path of the pallbearers. I want fights to break out. I want people screaming out things like, "WHY?!" and "It's NOT FAIR!" I mean yes, I do want them to eventually recover and go on to live normal lives again, but I think grieving is healthy, and I don't think we give it enough credence these days. Most of the time when I go to a funeral, I don't even feel like it's proper to cry any more, like everyone is struggling to hold back the tears. Not at my funeral. Everyone should feel free to just let it all out. Plus of course, I'd like to know that I was missed. ;)
Wednesday, June 15, 2011
Hell, I WILL TAKE IT.
I am trying to keep up with my 30 day song challenge, but I just can't blog every day. So the 30 days will be random, I guess.
30 Day Song Challenge
Day 25: A Song That Makes You Laugh
"Piss Up a Rope" by Ween
(Actually, most songs by Ween make me laugh. Either that or rock the fuck out!)
Saturday, June 11, 2011
I got inspired actually by looking at nomnompaleo.com again recently. The chick has some great, great recipe ideas, no doubt about it. And her writing style is very down-to-earth. But there's something about her that makes her blog so very inacessible to me. For one thing, it seems like her entire life is prep-cook-prep-cook-cart her one child around-prep-cook-workout-prep-cook-workout... Look, lady, I work. I have a full-time job. I have two small children. I'm in a band. I run a monthly jam session for women. I have extended family and an active social schedule. I have a garden. I have narcolepsy. I have two dogs. So yes, prep-cook-workout still has to happen, but it's like, the same as brushing my teeth has to happen. Gotta work it in. Secondly, I don't have a ton of money for things like a sous-vide. The whole thing kind of smacks of OC soccer Mom, really. Not that I have anything against that kind of person - quite the contrary - and more power to ya sister! But I have this sneaky feeling there are more Moms / people out there like me who aren't rolling in cash or time. Yet, I'm still working in the paleo thing. Maybe I have some useful advice to offer? Or just tell me to STFU, whatever.
My biggest issue is getting about in the morning. I'm narcoleptic, thus I have been late for work for the past sixteen years or so. I have to have a way to get out the door as quickly as possible in the morning. You might label this issue "No Time For Breakfast" just to put us all in the same boat together.
The best solution for me has been to eat breakfast at work. I know, not everyone likes doing that, and not everyone has the luxury of being able to eat at work, but if you can eat at work, or in your car on the way to work, here are the breakfasts that work for me:
(Everything comes with a big thermos of black coffee of course).
1. Get a container of pre-cut cantaloupe and a pack of sliced prosciutto from the grocery store and bring it in. Wrap about 1/4 slice of prosciutto around each chunk. This lasts me 2 days usually, which is about 2 oz prosciutto and 3/4 cups of cantaloupe per day. YUM.
2. Slice up an apple and put almond butter or sun butter on the slices. YUM.
3. A giant handful of your favorite berries with a handful of raw whole almonds. YUM.
4. In case of emergency, a Lara Bar (most kinds are paleo-friendly, but as usual check the label) will do in a pinch. YUM but high in carbs. A Tanka bar is better for you, but ca-ching $$$. YUM.
30 Day Song Challenge
Day 26: A Song That You Can Play on an Instrument
Iron Maiden - "Losfer Words"
Yes, I can play this on my bass. Not quite this fast, though. But damn it, I'm working on it! MAIDEN!
Friday, June 10, 2011
Thursday, June 9, 2011
30 Day Song Challenge
Day 28: A Song That Makes You Feel Guilty
"Look What You've Done" by Jet
I was married for nine years. It was a terrible marriage, bad from the very start, and in a constant state of degradation. I loved my ex-husband, passionately, deeply, but we were young, and he had quite the drug and alcohol problem. He mistreated me, to say the least. We were separated for about two years at the very end. I felt strongly that we should get divorced, but I wanted to make sure it was the right thing to do, naturally. He wanted to stay together, but continued to fuck up the relationship even when we were separated. I finally reached a point where I felt pretty dead inside towards him. The opposite of love is not hate, but apathy. I became apathetic. It made me feel happy to think about being divorced from him. I started to live my life again as a single person, and I enjoyed it. I finally went to a lawyer and had all the papers drawn up. I went to see my husband at his apartment. Without knowing any of my circumstances or what I had come there to do, he played this song for me, and sang it to me. I sat there, pregnant with another man's child, and thought, he doesn't deserve this. He may deserve many bad things, but he doesn't deserve what's about to happen to him.
Wednesday, June 8, 2011
I'm already getting sore!
30 Day Song Challenge:
Day 29 - A Song From Your Childhood
"Sing" by Joe Raposo
I pulled this one up again back in 2006 when I was making a mixtape for my newborn. It really brings back some nice, warm, secure feelings.
Tuesday, June 7, 2011
I'm on week 2 of my third boot camp. I moved to 7 am. So far, so good. It's actually kind of motivating me to get up in the mornings! I thought for sure I would just sleep through all of them and screw everything up. Whoo-hoo! I'm kicking butt. Also on Friday they featured me as the fitwit Camper Profile on their blog, so that was quite the lil honor. It was a good way for me to kind of give my perspective on the whole experience, and that makes me feel more comfortable in general. I'm not sure why, nor am I even sure I want to know why, but I am addicted to fitwit. My goal for this camp is to have perfect attendance.
AND THEN... I joined the fitwit dance club, which basically just means once a month I'm going to go to a dance class with some of the people. I've been wanting to go to dance 411 and shake my booty real hard, but I always feel like an ass going to those things by myself. So, now I have someone to go with. High five.
AND THEN... I bought a 25-class card to aqua boot camp, which is very near my work and has a lunch time class. I scheduled my first few for my off days from fitwit.
AND THEN... I fell off the wagon hardcore this past weekend... We went to Alex's graduation in Charleston, SC. I can't believe I'm the aunt of an adult now. It's just too weird. They grow up too fast. Anyway, I ate a bunch of garbage while traveling, and I had a lunch meeting today with an employee, and I have dinner plans tonight, so I'm just screwed. I'm planning to pick my paleo lifestyle back up tomorrow and run with it. I honestly can't believe the difference it makes when I'm eating clean vs. not. My stomach has actually been hurting after I indulge in whatever garbage I used to eat by the bucketful. It's been a very telling experience, for sure.
Hey, have you heard of the 30 day song challenge? Everybody is doing it on facebook. My problem is that I'm friends with too many music snobs and I don't feel like undergoing that kind of scrutiny. So I'm going to do it here.
Day 30: Your Favorite Song at This Time Last Year
"Summertime Clothes" by Animal Collective
The song and lyrics create such familiar imagery for me; it really resonated with me. Atlanta is HOT in the summer! And until I had kids, I was one of those night people...
Tuesday, May 31, 2011
The food fight ended on 5/21. I didn't win. I did, however, lose 18% of my body fat. If you're making a little impressed face at that, then just take a moment to realize that that percentage doesn't mean anything. I did lose quite a few pounds and inches. Then I went into this bizarre sort of post-partum about it. I indulged in all sorts of evil foods and drinks all week and basically felt sick most of the time. I think I was trying to have some kind of backlash, but I really don't know wtf I think I have to rebel against. Living longer? Good habits?
The descent into madness started a couple of days before the food fight ended, when I realized I couldn't possibly win. The trainers had this side bet going about which of them could lose the highest percentage of body fat. The trainer who won lost 25% of her body fat. She was already rail thin. Then it occurred to me, if someone only has 10 pounds of body fat, then they would have only had to lose 2.5 pounds over the past 11 weeks to get to 25%. So then some little sparks flew around in my robot brain for a couple of days until I got dunked. I lost 18% of my body fat, plus 4 pounds of muscle. I won't say how many pounds I lost, but I will say that I lost more than 1.5 pounds per week, which is 'unhealthy'. Why? Because you lose muscle when you lose weight that quickly. The woman who won lost 27% of her body fat, which would have been damn near impossible for me to do in 11 weeks, and entirely unhealthy.
Nonetheless I was thrilled to have lost the fat. Additionally I had lost inches, my clothes fit better (or worse if they were too big), my mood had stabilized, my blood pressure was better, my sleep apnea was cured, and I was fine with not winning. I can't win everything.
Then came the photos. I had to have Kevs take pictures of me from the front, side, and back for my 'after' shots. I looked awful. I mean really. Awful. All I could thinks was wow, I worked my ass off for eleven weeks just to look slightly less disgusting. And it was depressing. And all the fatigue and discomfort and nausea and hunger that I had been grinning and bearing for the past eleven weeks came back to me and forced their way through my tear ducts.
I mean, I had so many positive changes in my health and my life and the way I felt over the past few weeks, I couldn't understand why my body didn't really reflect that. In fact, very few people have made any kind of 'Have you lost weight?' types of comments at all. It's barely noticeable.
It's because it's kind of a drop in the bucket. I'm a big fat whale of a woman, and I have a long way to go. And no one to blame but myself. I just get kind of freaked out when I think about continuing to do this over the next I-don't-know-how-long until I'm in good shape. It's overwhelming.
So I trudged back into fitwit this morning, and I'm eating my fucking fruit for lunch. I don't have any choice any more. Oh but yeah now I have the added joy of having to wake up early in the morning to go exercise because the fam can't really handle me being gone an extra hour 4 nights per week.
It's cool. I'm going to rock this shit if it kills me.
Tuesday, April 26, 2011
I seem to be blogging on Tuesdays. How very odd.
I've been following this primal / paleo / caveman diet thing lately, for the sake of the fitwit "food fight" competition. If you've never heard of it, you can peep it here and here, but it's basically like, if you can't kill it with a spear or hack it out of the earth, you can't eat it. Oh and also you can't eat any grains or legumes for some reason. (Sigh) I hate diets that aren't really based on anything, but this one seems to be working and seems to be keeping me relatively fed, so I guess it is based on something, I'm just not 100% sure what yet. But you know, don't sell it like it's some caveman trip when oh, but if you come across beans or corn don't eat that shit for God's sake. It's all a lot easier to swallow (wah-wah) when there's some kind of basis behind it. Like Gittleman's stuff - I could understand that. I get the glycemic index. It seems to make perfect sense. If I eat something a little too sweet, I can totally feel it causing more cravings. This diet I don't really understand that well yet, but it's the fitwit way, so I've been giving it a whirl. Oh yeah, no dairy or alcohol either. Guhhh...
So, here are some things I've discovered on my foray into paleo-ism.
- Dehydrated ginger tastes like hair on fire.
- There's this thing called a Tanka Bar that's basically dried buffalo and dried cranberries that someone came up with, and it's the big / main / only? paleo snack food. Now in spicy pepper flavor too. Hey guess what? They taste pretty amazing. Not as in, "I'm starving, oh wow suddenly kale tastes good," either. I mean they actually taste good.
- I love canteloupe and hate honeydew.
- I knew 'sugar makes me hungry' before, but I did not know that fat is what makes me feel full.
- Apparently saturated fats are righteous now? This one is still confusing to me, but doing this for a few weeks probably won't kill me. Right?
- You just can't make kale taste good. Eating it raw is tolerable, making it into chips by tossing oil and salt and roasting is tolerable, but it cannot be made good.
- It's damn near impossible for me to eat enough protein in a day to be the beefcake my body is trying to be.
- Coconut water tastes like stale water. There's a weird meatiness to it. It tastes the way that it smells when you're sitting near someone with bad breath. Not horrible breath, and not right in your face, just bad. But when you splash it into a big glass of water it tastes nice and apparently rebalances your electrolytes wonderfully.
- Coconut oil works like regular oil but smells like coconut. I do love that smell. And I'm so happy to not be reading any recipes that call for vegetable oil. That stuff smells disgusting.
- Coconut meat tastes fine, but not as good as I had imagined it would. I love dessicated coconut, even unsweetened, and it seems like if that has been ligin in a big sphere with coconut milk then it would taste amazing, but no. It is pretty filling, though.
- My stomach lacks the ability to signal for "full." But lately I've been trying to at least take a stab at guessing, instead of ignoring the problem altogether. That's progress, I guess.
Tuesday, April 19, 2011
That was a weak segue into my new constant obsession about my inability to find a balance between Anna and non-Anna concerns. Like last year when I felt always stressed for time because eyedrum was eating into my family time, I worry about the time I spend away from the kids. I didn't see them all day today, other than a quick good morning and a quick goodnight. Unlike last year, I feel that this is a much more important reason. I'm getting healthy -- that would buy me years of time with them that I might otherwise not have. But I could spend more time with them and get healthy if I would just work out at home. But I never did that when I had the chance. I didn't want to, and they wouldn't let me. And then let's not even talk about my new diet being completely different from what they eat. But wait, should it be? Am I still in the trial period? Is this an opportunity for me to feel guilty about something?
I haven't bought their Easter stuff at all yet. What do I have to do again? Egg hunt? Color eggs? Where am I?
I'm so tired.
Belly dancing continues unabated. As does boot camp. I ran an incredibly slow mile today and patted myself on the back for it. I'm back off the cigs, which of course is WONDERFUL. I pigged out over the weekend, but it was scheduled so therefore fine I guess. You wouldn't believe what a hard workout belly dancing is.
Monday, April 11, 2011
Enter the assistant trainer at fitwit, Jer. I was impressed by him last camp because he spent so much extra time with me and the other "special ed" kids. I liked him because he has a decent sense of humor and unlike many athletic folks, did not seem to be a fattist. He's a great guy; I knew that.
But HOLY FUCKING HELL! Look at this!
Wow, I'm just amazed. Then I read his blog and I'm even more impressed; the guy has tons of awesome stuff going on. Very refreshing. So no, not some dumb athlete at all. He's just incredible, really.
Today was the first day back at fitwit after a week off. I felt like a schlub, but I didn't feel all weak and terrified like I did 7 weeks ago. I worked hard, almost barfed yet again, and felt trembly and stiff afterwards. Somehow this is good news.
Have I ever mentioned that I'm incredibly competitive? So yeah, there's a contest... I have 6 weeks... Gotta... Pull... Off... a... Miracle...
Oh, and joy of joys, there was slideshow to commemorate the last day of fitwit last session. I was featured not once, but twice, not working out whatsoever, but doing this:
and then they go all Special Olympics at the end with this final shot:
(but how awesome that I wore my KISS t-shirt)
Tuesday, April 5, 2011
The temptation is completely with me right now to say, "I'm on spring break from fitwit. Slag off. I said slag off!" But I gotta stay kinetic. Time and again we've seen what happens when I don't. The problem, and this is true of the homeworks as well, is that I don't seem to want to do fitwit workouts when I'm not there. I KNOW, believe me I KNOW how good they are for me. But the problem is that they're just so dang difficult. Remember Anna from 8 weeks ago? The one who never did anything whatsoever? Nada? Zilch? She lives within me. New Anna envisions myself coming home and running up and down my block and doing push ups and burpees and so forth in between. The other one is still there with all her anxiety and her busy life and her body at rest, staying at rest. Her economy of motion. The garden is more important. The laundry. Shopping. Having hormone related meltdowns. Raking.
A compromise is in order. I scheduled up some compromises. Sunday I did hours of grueling gardening including tilling. Tilling takes it out of me. Thursday I have a pilates class on tap, and I've never done that before. And tonight, my Mom and I went to a belly dancing class! Man, I've always wanted to do it. So we did! I love most kinds of dancing, but this has been a little slutty dream of mine for ages. Thanks to halfoffdepot.com , the dream could finally be realized. Mom and I are doing a six week class together. The moves actually came naturally to me, but when I looked in the mirror all I could see is this awful flubber flying around. The goddam Franklin Mint couldn't make a coin sash big enough to camouflage all that. But fuck it, it was fun. And I moved my body and worked up a little sweat. Mission accomplished. Poor Mom, she was so nervous, and then she has problems with rhythm. It reminded me of when I used to go with her to Richard Simmon's Workout America back in the 80's. But I think I got the moves down pretty easily, despite how gross I looked doing them. My coach at fitwit had a word for it but I can't remember what it was - he said I had a good sense of how to do exercises, like an awareness or aptitude or something, but I can't remember what it is called. In any case, I'm happy with what I'm doing every day now, and I'm feeling much better about the fitness conundrum at the moment. It may be true that I'm in the honeymoon phase of my newest fitness initiative, but I have to just keep chipping away at it.
In other news, I'm playing bass like a badass also these days. I ripped my hands apart playing so much over the weekend. I'm also working on a disgusting song that I'm writing. Can't wait to get it nailed down and out into the world.
Friday, April 1, 2011
I did something weird on February 21. I joined a 6-week fitness boot camp. Tonight, I finished it.
(Hold for applause).
For four days every week I headed down to the local high school and worked out really, really hard for an hour with a trainer and some other people who were also paying him to play PE Coach. Like a purple robot. Six weeks later, I am stronger, more capable, and a little slimmer. I probably would be a lot slimmer except I only started really trying to watch what I eat about a week ago.
I am, in fact, proud of myself.
However, I smoked about 5 cigarettes tonight. This was the first time in ages, but I'm having a massive problem with the kids' daycare. Those SOB's really, really pissed me off. Looks like we will have to change daycare centers for the first time ever. I'm not beating myself up about the cigs.
On the 16th of March my grandmother passed away. She was very dear to me. I'm not handling it very well. She was 93 and had been battling cancer for three years. She had every right to go; it was completely and utterly her time. She did it with grace and dignity, as she did everything in her long life. It's still been tough for me. She was a constant in my life. She loved me. Now there is one less person on Earth who loves me, to go along with the many new ones every day who seem to hate me for no apparent reason. Moreover, it's a kind of love that can never be replaced. No one will ever love me like that again.
So in addition to the grueling ten hour drive (each way) to Toledo with my two toddlers (and my Kevs, thank God), and the ridiculous expense, the time away from work, the new funeral clothes, the extended family, the pet sitters, and everything else... my heart is broken.
I missed exactly two boot camp sessions. My shining achievement throughout all this. I've got to take care of myself. It's so much more than a mantra.
Monday, March 28, 2011
I am proud to say, "I am a ROBOT." As an aside, when my niece Rebekah was about 3, my brother was showing her how your voice sounds funny if you speak into a fan, and he said, "I am a robot," and then she tried and said, "I am a purple robot." Because she was into purple. And so am I.
So, I'm not sure what's happening, and I think it's kind of fun. I've somehow transitioned from having all the time in the world to stress about my weight problem and no time to do anything about it, to working on it very hard every day but not having a lot of time to think or write about it. I mentioned before that I joined an exercise club... it's actually a boot camp, I'm told, but it doesn't really seem like what a boot camp should be. It's comprised of some very nice people. Everyone is really, really supportive and only a little frightened by my giganticism. Anyway, it's called FitWit and today starts my 6th week doing it. Four days a week I go to Decatur High school after work and bust my ass for an hour. The first three weeks or so my legs and knees were in utter torturous pain every minute. I'm starting to feel a lot better. I think I'm actually starting to get into it now. It's still utter torturous pain, but I'm starting to appreciate the daily accomplishment. And I like having my days off sanctioned. It makes me feel better about resting, like it's more deserved. I'm kind of loving it. Yesterday I even did yoga on my off day to try and get some deeper stretching in (at Ashram Wellness). My legs have seriously been toast.
What's going on with my body then? So far not that much. I feel a LOT more capable. I feel a lot stronger, and many of the exercises I struggled with so hard in the beginning are fine now. I wasn't paying much attention to food in the beginning, but I've been watching it more lately, especially since I decided to get kind of serious about the food challenge. I would imagine I've lost about 10 pounds or so. I feel like my clothes might be a tiny bit looser. My breasts are a little smaller. Thanks FitWit!
Sunday, March 6, 2011
I'm still not smoking.
I joined an exercise club.
I rock out regularly. Even today - score! Monthly Cycle debuted at Wonderroot with its highest attendance ever! Woot!
Plus I got measured for body fat in a hydrostatic tank today. Who else can say that? So anyway, it turns out I'm a big fat whale. But the good news is that I have like an extreme incredible amount of muscle under all this shit. So my goal weight is higher than I ever would have imagined! Weird. I'm so fucking ripped.
Monday, January 24, 2011
And that's about all I can say for myself. I'm in the big, big one-step-forward-two-steps-back world. This weekend was abysmal. Today was abysmal. Between my narcolepsy and my sudden shitstorm at work, I'm ready to give the middle finger to just about everything that breathes. Want some?
Tuesday, January 18, 2011
John: Turn on a and e now!
Me: Oh hell. Bridget is here and we're watching it. My phone went off and I said, "That's someone texting me to watch this show." (Bridget is falling over laughing at this point.)
John: Me and that guy pick the same things off the value menu.
Me: Um that chick just said my life story.
John: She's wearing clogs.
(30 minutes later)
Me: Sorry I haven't texted you back but I've had to do squat thrusts during the commercial breaks.
John: That's ok, I was riding the exercise bike and lifting dumbbells.
John: And purging.
Me: Oh good idea.
(end of the show)
Me: I'm so glad they are still fatter than we are.
Anyway, I'm not the kind of person to learn something and then act upon it, but we'll see. I fully understand the risks of being a fatty. Just like I understand the risks of smoking. One day at a time, Sweet Jesus. I did decide, though, that eating raw fruits and vegetables between meals is not to be considered eating between meals. I have such a deficit of that food group that I think the benefits heavily outweigh the costs should such a thing ever occur. I had a mid-morning banana today. Why does that make me feel like such a tool?
I'm doing great with not smoking, cleaning, organizing, staying on top of my money (except I spent too much this weekend, but at least I know that), everything except, of course, this.
Step to it, bitch!
Saturday, January 15, 2011
Oh really now, it's not all that bad! Get over yourself! Sheesh!
I have these huge, massive plans. RESOURCE ALLOCATION. Big, big problem.
I have a milestone birthday coming up next year in March. I've always wanted to be one of those people who did it up right on milestone birthdays. Alas, not since "Annafest '90" have I really done it up right, and that was just a slumber party with a grandiose name. So I've decided, I'm going to Iceland. I've always wanted to go. I'm going. I have to be in better physical shape, undoubtedly. Also there's a matter of about $2000 I would need to come up with at minimum just to take myself. I'm planning. I want to skulk around (oh give me a break, I have no idea what the right verb is) in the Blue Lagoon. I want to have ridiculous spa treatments performed on me. I want to dogsled and not herniate the poor dogs. I want to see the northern lights but I have no idea if that's the right time of year or not. I want to take jeep tours of glaciers and geysers. I want to go out in what's supposed to be the secret party hotspot of Europe. I'm going to do it. I hope I'll have company, but if not I'll just go.
Another big project that will require an actual investment... I want to landscape the backyard. Don't get me wrong; I love my hippy flower garden back there that is the result of utter neglect. I love the combination of plastic and metal and dog crap and the grill. But it's time for a change. I want a house that looks like it's managed by grown-ups, and I want a garden to match. God, I wish I had skills in carpentry and / or metalworking. Anyway, the plan is to build a zen garden, but not a japanese zen garden. A Georgian zen garden. Instead of cherry trees I want dogwoods, instead of koi I want catfish, instead of bonsai I want giant fucking southern pines, etc. But I am planting bamboo for privacy and because it does really well here. Same concept with the pebble paths and everything, but extending the idea of "being at one with nature" to include things that are - uh - natural. For here. For my red clay world.
Also on the list is the interior redux. We're gradually getting organized, but WHAT an undertaking. It's starting to look like some grown-ups live here somewhere, but what I'm left with doesn't really look very pretty. Sure I'm utilizing vertical space, but at what cost? I'd rather just have less stuff and more room. Ironically, that costs money. And on top of that, I'm literally afraid of the office now. The upstairs office. It used to be my little stinky sanctuary, but then Kevs started shoving things in there. Endlessly. I haven't spent any time in there in probably over 2 years. GROTY. Even Delia doesn't go in there any more, and that's where her litter box is. I once dreamt it would be my little guest room / office / reading nook / play with my one baby area. It has never been clean. I don't know how to get it clean. I'm going up there tomorrow. Wish me luck, I have a feeling it's going to suck like I could never have imagined... Anyway, that whole project already has lots of costs associated with it.
Where am I going to get all the money for all this?
Plus add in the fact that I'm an impulse shopper and then, well, we're doomed. It's a tight budget over here. I did what I promised, I kept my 2011 vow, and Kevs and I did thorough financial planning today, as thorough as we possibly are capable of doing, and we're fine, but man. It's tight.
So much to think about...
Ate too much chocolate, didn't exercise, did clean and write, did not smoke, and did check the bankbook as well as several billion other accounts. Day 15 of this year was better than day 14.
Friday, January 14, 2011
"Something is fundamentally wrong and I can't put my finger on it."
"I don't know how to fix my life."
"This is not the life I am supposed to be living."
"How did everything go so wrong?"
The insistence that this is not the life I'm supposed to be living is with me most of the time, somewhere, but it tends to be exposed more often in concert with my menses. Any sane, logical person would note that yes, this time of the month is one of increased hormonal activity, and thus a time of heightened sensitivity, depressed mood, and general irritability. Duly noted.
But tonight, I swear to God, I could see 14-year-old Anna below me. She was screaming something unintelligible and raising her hand up at me in a fist. Perhaps what she was screaming was, "Why?" And in that moment, the excuses, the facade, the decades of acceptance and dishonesty just melted away. Instantly. I know why. I let this happen. I made this happen.
I did not follow my dreams. I did not hold out for the best. I did not demand the best for or of myself. I didn't go for it, and I could have. For so many years now I've been confident that it's not too late, but in all honesty it might be too late now.
The intellectual achievements always came easy. Always. That should have led to so much more, but it has not.
I wanted to be a musician. I gave up without trying. The lie that I might have made it keeping music as a hobby, or inadvertently somehow been "discovered" comforted me for a long time, but I never even went that far. I'm only now rediscovering my love of playing music, and probably only because I'm fairly confident that even if I did try I wouldn't be successful at this point. Someone suggested to me once that I might have a fear of success. I can't wrap my mind around that one. That fact is probably an indicator that there's some truth to it.
I have never really believed that I would have a happy storybook love life. I regret with all my heart that I settled for so little in my marriage. I knew it wasn't the right thing long before we were married. In fact, I actually do deserve a great man. Kevs is a great man. He is perfect for me in many ways. But he's not the one. I will spend the rest of my life with him except in the unlikely event that he passes away before I do. If the only thing I had accomplished in my life was to find true love, I would have considered myself very lucky, and very honored. I could have at least done that for myself. I could have at least tried, and not always succumbed to fear and loneliness. But I do adore Kevs and I'm usually very happy with him. It's a nice consolation.
I would have loved being a writer, too. I've always loved writing. I thought at some point there should be some financial security, but even the career I stumbled into has not turned out to be lucrative for me, really. Except for the very highly skilled and supremely educated people in the world, the working sphere has very little to do with intelligence. It has much more to do with things like appearance. Punctuality. Politics. One's ability to completely suppress one's personality. I'm not good at those things. So my back-up plan eats most of my time and effort, and I can't really find the time to pursue either my first or second passion. Plus I smoked for 20 years, took very poor care of my body, had two children, engaged in all kinds of other hobbies, lived through a miserable marriage, spent every free minute engaged in the pursuit of fun, spent every free dime on stupid things like shoes, and honored every other commitment above any commitment to myself. It could be argued that I throw down the roadblocks before me rather than behind. It certainly seems that way.
The problem with reflection and self-discovery / self-awareness is that it does not prescribe the means or methods for change. I understand so much about what has gone wrong in my life and why things are the way they are. I have no idea how to change. I have no idea what it would take to "turn this ship around" and effect meaningful, significant improvement.
The only thing I have left to try is to be a robot. Fourteen days of this year are gone. This is how years go by, in increments. Very small increments. I have to do better. Every day.
I didn't smoke today. I exercised. I checked and caught up my bank book. I wrote. I did not play the bass. I did not do any cleaning. I ate my weight in chocolate.
Wednesday, January 12, 2011
I actually have been keeping up my lil spreadsheet pretty well. Not amazing results, but hey, there's still 343 days left in the year. You want the good news first, or the bad?
The actually kind of amazing news is that I'm still a nonsmoker. After my last post I felt like a loser, even though I only had one, but god, I could only make it THREE DAYS. Bleah. So then on Friday I got drunk with Bridget and Kevs in celebration of Kevs getting to keep his job, and afterwards Bridg and I shared my 1/2 'emergency' cigarette. Other than that, no smokes for me. Just the sweet, sweet patch. Which I did without one day and was relatively ok. But I'd prefer to keep it glued to me for the time being. :)
So, exercising, meh. Hit or miss. I should probably start weighing myself but it's so fucking depressing I can hardly stand it. The good news is that all of 2010 I was at an all-time LOW on exercise, so any little bit is good these days. I would say I've definitely been more active this year so far, but I'd liek to truly put in some hours doing exercise for the sake of exercise.
All the other things, eating between meals, checking the bank book, playing bass, writing, etc... they've all been kinda fucked up the past few days due to
THE ATLANTA SNOWPOCALYPSE.
Sunday night it started to snow and it came down hard and gigantic. Maybe 3-4 inches. Then Monday morning it started to sleet and formed a giant ice crust and it hasn't really been above freezing much since. It's Wednesday night and we've all been locked in the house pretty much since then. Kevs and I haven't ventured out much since Saturday, but the kids at least went to Mom's Saturday night and most of the day Sunday. CABIN FEVER.
Here are some things that make me fail at being organized and most other goals:
* uncertain schedule
* time off from work
* nicotine withdrawal
Also note they make me very cranky, so some of the time since Friday has been most unpleasant for all involved. Saturday I spent a lot of time screaming. The kids were driving me bonkers. I had massive PMS. I had horrid nicotine withdrawal. And the house was an utter shithole. Sunday I managed to get loads of cleaning and organizing done, and everything kind of abated after that. But I'm starting to feel like if we don't get out tomorrow things might get weird. I've been helping Kevs a lot with getting his etsy site up and running, and with kicking him in the ass to go get registered for a festival. I re-organized the kids room yet again and got Joseph involved. I cleaned many, many things. I've done a lot of cooking and cleaning. I reorganized the medicines and one of the cupboards. Wow, it's starting to sound like a lot less stuff now that I'm actually writing it down.
Not going outside makes me feel like I can't exercise. Being trapped in the house with food and snacks and making the boys food at their every whim knocks my eating off track. Not being at work makes me get out of the routine of checking my bank book and doing my spreadsheet and writing in my blog, as they are kind of chore-ish things. They say you're supposed to try and identify these types of triggers. I'm not sure why. So I can prevent them from having an effect? Yeah, right.
We saw Shrek 4 tonight and it was awesome. I loved the witches and the reference to Dorothy Hamilton.
Also, Bridget fwded me a link to a site where they have Dungen playing a Foreigner cover - "I Want To Know What Love Is." It's great. Here's a picture of the comment I left them. I love Dungen 4-ever. Some day I will go back in time and be a shitty Swedish teenager and stand outside their house with my iPhone and cry. I will be thin and beautiful but have no idea what to do with it except wear arm warmers and squeal and never have to pay for drinks.
Tuesday, January 4, 2011
So Kevs is for sure losing his job now and I once again feel completely incapable. No bass playing. I ate about 7 pounds of chips and cheese when I went for a drink with Ed, which was in fact 3 drinks followed by a cigarette. With the patch on. No cleaning. I actually simply forgot to check my bank account because I knew I had not done anything in it. No exercise.
Kevs is my man. He's a dear, sweet man. But to be completely honest, he has some issues. It takes him a long time to do everything. He doesn't have a malicious bone in his body. He has a massive work ethic and a very high ethical standard. There's just something very wrong, and sadly, I know it will take hima long time to get a steady job again. And it will take me a lot of work to help him. for which I will get no credit. I know, I should be primarily concerned for Kevs, and I'm trying. But when he's out of work it's me and the children who suffer. I'm irritated. No more drinking for me for a while. I can't stay off the cigs if I'm too tipsy.
Monday, January 3, 2011
GETTING MY SHIT TOGETHER ON THE GRAND SCHEME.
I have certain battles in life. Everyone does. If I keep letting them go on and on without getting better, they will overcome me, and I will lose the war. I will die early, and broke, and etc.
So, become a robot. Form good habits.
I took a long walk today at lunch time. It was nice. I have the feeling I will sleep like a coma victim tonight. Not sure if I can do it again tomorrow, but I think I should be able to. I need more music, and more rocking music. I need more jams I can sink my teeth into and forget that I'm in motion.
Oh and hey if I can't do it tomorrow, FTW. I'll do something else. As long as I do something I'll be ok. And yes, laundry counts. It doesn't count as both cleaning and exercise, but it can count as exercise because folding a week's worth of laundry for 4 is no fucking joke.
I can't believe I'm somebody's Mom.
Saturday, January 1, 2011
I quit smoking today, so there's the first thing. I'm on the patch, and so far, so good. Oh yeah except I feel awful and I can't write for shit. But see the thing is, I have high blood pressure and I've been sick with a cold for 2 months, and I'm so tired of it. I've been told quitting smoking could help. See, that's a writing device called understatement. Funny.
Also I'm morbidly obese. I'm not afraid to write it publicly because anyone who knows me would have to be blind to not notice that. I've sort of come to terms with the social ramifications; I mean, not everyone finds voluptuous women repulsive, honestly. There's been no lack of play, ever. I can poke fun at myself, etc. I've been overweight almost my entire life, from toddlerhood on. The problem is that heart disease is looming and I have two tiny little boys. I want to be around when they are my age, and at this rate, I won't. No chance. My good friend Sally stated it best (right after I explained how at ease I am with myself) when she said, "There are no obese 70-year-olds". And she's right.
Oh and to make matters worse, at my last appointment my doctor told me I am borderline diabetic. Great.
So, there's all this shit, tons of emotional baggage and reasons behind the things I'm unhappy with in my life, and I've gone through literally decades of thinking and reasoning and understanding why, but the bottom line is that it all needs to change. I asked my shrink how. This is not the first time I've asked a mental health professional, btw. To paraphrase, he said I understand it intellectually, probably better than he does or many other mental health folks, but it's not a matter of intellect. I wandered away with a big question mark over my head, and then Bridget explained that I need to just become a robot. Just fucking do it like every other loser on the fucking globe. Until I can handle it and I'm used to it. She might be the smartest person I've ever known.
I've formulated a plan, at least initially, to try and meet some initial goals. It's New Years Day, by the way. The sun is cold.
1. Go on the patch for an indefinite amount of time. No more smoking, ever. When I turn 70 I can start again if I want to.
2. No eating between meals. I can eat 10,000 calories in the meal, but no eating between them.
3. Get some kind of exercise every day. Run for six hours or do 5 sit-ups, whatever. Just get some every day.
4. Look at / catch up my bank register every day. Every day.
5. Do the biweekly finances with Kevin every payday. Every payday.
6. Play the bass most days.
7. Do some writing most days.
I'll build on these as I go along, but I've gotta take some goddam baby steps. I'm sick of failing. FTW.
OK, writing about this is making me cranky. Now I want to pay homage to an amazing woman and actor, Margaret Hamilton. Yeah, Judy Garland could sing and was the heroine, but Margaret Hamilton is the scariest and most iconic witch of all times. Period. Peerless. It must have been so fun to play the Wicked Witch of the West, especially back then. What a brilliant actor. Well done.
I've been using it for a while and, like all my jokes, anyone with a sub-110 IQ doesn't get it, or they find it off-putting.
Just read the Onion, ok? Every headline or story includes "area man," "area woman," "area dog," "area mechanic," etc. Like newspapers did in olden times. It's a gag.
So, I wear many hats. I'm a Mom, an IT Exec, an art and music jerk, a bass player in the Sleazestaxx (perhaps he least-known band on the planet), a friend, a Catholic, and lots of other things. One thing that I try to keep consistent while carrying out all these various duties is to maintain a sense of humor and keep people smiling / laughing.
This is all the explaining I'm going to do. If you don't get it, you can just piss off.
The other thing that is consistent about me is that I'm chronically hostile. Also I quit smoking today.