Sunday, April 28, 2013

this girl is on fire

Alicia Keys sure knows how to belt it out.  This has been my jam for the last few weeks as I motor through the wrap-up of my six-week body challenge.  It feels like it's been a long time since we started, because so much has happened and changed since then.  It's kind of crazy what can happen in such a short time!

1. You can finally fit into, and subsequently become too small for, a favored piece of clothing.
2. You can reaffirm that you really don't need to drink in order to have a good time, and you can spend a weekend away from home and still lose weight.
3. You can relish in the fact that your body has limits that can change, and you can keep pushing them regardless of how high they get.
4. You can start feeling excited to show off your body.
5. You can make changes to your lifestyle and have them become so engrained, they are habits.

And much more, I'm sure.

The moral of this story is that little changes can mean big things if you stick with them.  For the month of April I embarked on a "squat challenge" that was all over Pinterest.  I didn't take any "before" photos, but my legs feel pretty jacked after working up to 250.  I would highly suggest it if you're curious - just make sure you stretch!

Picked up from this blog .  If you Google it, there are also versions with a bare ass to motivate you if you're into that kind of thing.

Side note: I've been thrilled with everyone's kind words and compliments since I took the blog "live" (as I like to put it - really, I just made it a little more known that I've been plugging away at this for a while).  I get all warm and fuzzy and all that thinking that I might have inspired someone who was feeling a little down or needing a kickstart of some kind.  My door is always open if anyone ever wants to pick my brain! 

Sunday, April 21, 2013

coconut water (or "the devil's saliva," as I like to call it)

I'll try anything once.  Let me just put that out there right now. 

I ran across coconut water in the grocery store, on sale by a generous $0.30 per 1L tetra-pack.  I'd heard of it before, vaguely, somewhere reputable.  I bought it to try and forgot about it in the back of my fridge.

I was just finishing up reading Jillian Michaels' Slim for Life and she mentioned coconut water as a good source of potassium and way to help combat bloating from too much sodium and "lady-time" (as I like to call it).  Since I have "after" photos being taken in a week for my 6-week body challenge from boot camp, I thought "Why not try this? See if you look less bloat-y?" 

Sweet mother of all things decent, no.

Imagine a liquid that is the consistency of egg whites.  Also the color of egg whites, clear-ish but yellow-ish.  Now imagine it has the sickeningly sweet taste of coconuts.  Now drink it.

I think I'm going to chase it with a shot of bleach.  I don't care if it makes me lose 20lbs this week - not worth it.

If you really like coconut, fill your boots.  I have 0.75L with your name on it if you have a death wish.

Maybe it's better scrambled.  Or going down a drain.

Saturday, April 20, 2013


I don't think there's anything that can prepare you for the feeling you have when you reach a goal.  I'm not talking about the little ones, like not having sugar in your coffee for a week or getting your ass on the treadmill in the morning (although those are worth celebrating).  I'm talking about something you've hungered for, dreamed about, and wished you could have for so long that it felt unreachable.

For the first time in nearly ten years, I am under 200lbs.
Maybe you haven't known me that long, and you've caught me in the middle of the battle.  This is something that I'm proud of, but I'm ashamed of.  I was not always this person.

Four years ago, I weighed over 300lbs.  Three hundred and thirty (point 6) if we're going to be exact about things.  It really bothers me to think about that now.  I think that's where the shame part comes in.  How could I have let myself get to that point?

But I don't want to dwell on that.  I want to think about how hard I've been working to make sure I'm never that person again.  So you might have noticed some changes in me over the last few years.  It's been a long, slow, exhausting, rewarding, inspiring battle, and I have never felt more proud or excited about anything in my life. I have lost 135lbs. And counting.

Sometimes I still can't believe it.  I catch a glimpse of myself in a mirror or store window and go "Who is that girl?"  Or I find myself buying a pair of size medium pants and say "I never thought I'd get here."  It's in these moments that I am grateful for my experiences I've had with my weight - I will never take my health or self-esteem for granted again.

I just wanted to share how damn excited I am that I've done this, and let you know that I'm there for you if you want anything - advice, encouragement, reminders, commiseration, or a good laugh.  

Sunday, April 14, 2013

Jillian Michaels is pretty awesome

Last weekend I had the privilege of seeing Jillian Michaels on her Maximize Your Life tour with some of my boot camp ladies.  My impression (as a die-hard people-pleaser) is that she is someone that you would want to make proud - she has an unshakeable faith in people and their abilities, and she just wants everybody to be healthy.  Jillian also has a huge wealth of knowledge; you can tell she could talk for days and feel like she's barely scratched the surface.  
As a JM fan, I had heard a lot of her talk before from her other media forms.  I've read chunks of her various books (Master Your Metabolism and Slim for Life are my favorites to date), and I've devoted a stalkerish level of time to listening to her podcasts. Seriously, I've choked up on jogs listening to her play Mama Bear to some of the callers.  If you don't have time to read one of her books, her podcasts are pretty fantastic.  Anyways, she had a couple little nuggets in her talk that I really held onto.  I'm not even going to take the time to PhotoPaint them onto an artfully blurred photo of a girl jogging or a sunset - I'm just going to lay them out there for you.

1. "We become strongest where we are most broken."
 What an interesting way of putting things.  This has been sticking with me for a while - the things that I was having the most trouble with - food, self-esteem, body image, exercise (I was a veritable hot mess) - have become some of my greatest sources of strength and pride because I've had to work so damn hard at them.  Am I an expert? No. But I'd like to think I have a few pieces of wisdom to share at opportune times so people think I know what I'm talking about.  (Which is also the secret to teaching, in some ways!)

2. "If you have a 'why,' you can tolerate any 'how.'"
People have been complimenting me on my "willpower" a lot lately.  To be perfectly honest, I don't think I have a lot of willpower.  If there were a plate of my mom's chocolate chip cookies kicking around my kitchen, I would have a really hard to time keeping my face out of them.  I just play the "Is it worth it?" game with myself: 

 Think about this.  You have been phoning it in for a long time in your life.  Is this cookie really going to solve anything? Is it really going to make you happier?  You know what you want - you love to be right and you love to win.  You've had that dress sitting in your closet and those skinny jeans on the shelf for way too effing long.  It is not worth it to blow fitting in them.  Now go clean something or look at Pinterest.

Does it always work? No.  That's why the 80-20 rule is pretty fantastic.  No one is perfect, but you can be pretty good 80% of the time.  The other 20% is where you cut yourself the slack to say "Is this cookie going to be my entire undoing? No? Then it is in serious peril." And then you slay it like a dragon and move on with your life. 

So yes, Jillian Michaels.  Look into her if you are needing some inspiration.  She put this up on Twitter recently, which makes me like her even more.

Damn it feels good to be a gangsta.


Friday, April 5, 2013

i caved a little

I hate it when the weather is gloomy.  It sours my whole damn mood.  I wanted a coffee today - and I had one.
I KNOW - it's not a weekend day.  Here's my thought process.

1. I'm in a crappy mood - I'm tantalizingly close to a major milestone weight-wise and I think I'm having a snap-back week so I don't think I'm going to hit it.  Rage.
2. I have been wanting to eat everything in sight - fruit.  What the hell, right? Apparently my tastes are changing again, because I've been tempted by clementines.  Woe is me.
3.  I woke up today, and I said "I really want a damn coffee.  I don't want the caffeine, I don't want a huge one, I just want the taste of it."
4. I demonized it all day, and then I realized - I'm a big girl.  I can go a whole work week without coffee if I want to - today I just decided I'd really enjoy a coffee.  I got a decaf, I put fat-free creamer in it, I savored the feeling of the warmth on my hands.

And guess what? Underwhelming.  It was not the delicious comfort I thought it would be.  I learned a valuable lesson (which I knew, but apparently I needed a reminder) -  sometimes the thought of something is better than actually having it.

That chocolate cake will not be your entire undoing, but it's probably not going to do what you want it to do (comfort you, excite you, clean your car).  

Things upcoming - hopefully hitting this effing milestone I've been chasing for years (oh yeah, it's big), going to see Jillian Michaels speak tomorrow evening, and I've been doing a squat challenge.