Bad Mood

When my beloved Target closed, I bought a pair of white jeans, size 8.

I figured I’d wear them by the end of summer for my birthday in London with my friends. Instead, I moved to Edmonton on a whim one day because I make amazing life choices. Then I got frustrated with my old gym, and allowed all of the old insecurities to creep back in and I ended up gaining 25lbs back instead of continuing to lose weight. Those white jeans have never been worn. Tonight I was folding my laundry and I saw the white pants. I also noticed a black knit dress I bought to wear to a Holiday Party (which I didn’t end up going to anyway). I saw the black vegan leather shorts I bought to wear as the first pair of shorts I’ve worn since 2002. And the black and white dress I bought one spring at Target because my friend Brie said it looked cute on me (I have now decided that I will wear it to her wedding). I own lots of clothing that just hangs in the closet, never worn, because I’ve put weight back on, or I never go out.

It’s my own damn fault. I spent eight months off & some nights I don’t work out; I eat poutine and watch Total Bellas.

I don’t work out at home on days I can’t get to the gym. I’m letting my self confidence take a hit and all of my adorable clothes sit in the closet and never get to be worn. I spent money on these things. I was so excited to wear them. But now, they’re just put away in the closet, with some sad acceptance that I’ll never wear them.

Until today.

Much like I hide at home because I’m afraid that everyone on Earth subconsciously thinks I’m an idiot, I’m doing myself a disservice by not wearing my cute clothing. By sighing and saying “you’ll never fit into those white jeans, so eat the brownie,” I’m just allowing myself to have low self esteem. My best friend Melissa is kind of feeling the same way that I do. We’ve been planning a ladies only trip to Montreal for spring 2018, so I think it’s time to get us out of that self defeating attitude and start getting into that “we are so very bad ass” attitude instead.

Today is October 1/17. I’ve decided to make it my personal goal to wear all of the things in my closet that I bought as motivation to lose weight/was too self conscious to go anywhere within the next 365 days. It may seem really stupid to an outsider, but to me, it’s a goal to work towards to help me stay focused. I’m an emotional eater, so a stressful day at work will have me reaching for the chips. So, I hung the white jeans beside my bed. Every morning when I wake up, I’ll look at those jeans. That will remind me at the start of the day that binge eating isn’t worth it. I’ll focus on this;

And less on this:

Of course, Melissa isn’t one to be motivated by “reward clothing,” but she is a personal trainer that works for a fashionable clothing company, so she knows what she wants her body to look like so she can wear what she wants. Because our goals are the same, we can help keep each other accountable. I’ll also check with my girl Johanna and her fitness Facebook group to help me feel like I’m holding myself accountable by checking in every day.

I’m always at my best when I’m driven to reach a goal and right now, that goal is to wear those white pants. Maybe it seems stupid to an outsider, but I’m sure you have something, whether it’s a fitness goal, a professional goal, or a personal goal. You have your own white pants and it’s up to you to come up with a plan to achieve that goal. Set a timeline, and then make it happen. My goal is to wear all six items in my closet my October 1/18. But those white pants? They’ll be worn by spring. Every time I think about grabbing a bag of chips, or skipping a workout (if I can’t make it to Crossfit, pull out Stratusphere Sculpt or Stratusphere yoga), I’m going to ask myself if it’s worth not fitting into those pants.

I’ll be adding this to the pile of projects I have on the go (more about those HERE). Maybe I can drive my new car to my new house, wearing my white pants, if I just stay focused and work hard.

…Ready For It?

Welp, another spin around the sun for me, as yesterday I celebrated another birthday!

Still not mature

I celebrated my thirty something-th birthday with the coolest bunch of coworkers ever, cheesecake made by my littles, and this weekend, I’ll be a true Albertan, heading to an Oilers game, and some friends & I will be hosting a girls night get together the next night! Yup, being alive is pretty rad.

However, I’ve been using this time in my life to make some change. My place, which was a great “starter” place here in YEG, isn’t right for my family anymore. With the teen attending school in a different part of the city, we need to look at living closer to her school. So, I put myself on a waiting list to move to a condo closer to her high school. Come spring, we’ll be living in a newer, nicer place. While I’ll miss my lakes for running, I’m sure I can find running in a residential area just as fulfilling (narrator: she will not), but the needs of the family need to come first. I’m also finishing up driver’s education, so come spring, I will be buying my VERY FIRST CAR. That’s right bitches, I will be buying an automobile. I’ve got some great suggestions (thanks to every one on Twitter, Facebook, and Snapchat for their vehicle suggestions! The best part of being a slightly well known blogger is the awesome product suggestions from readers). I’ll be test driving all of your suggestions, as well as my first choice, a 2015 Toyota RAV4 (big thanks to my good friend Paul at TD Insurance, for letting me know which cars body shop techs and rental agencies recommend. When it comes time to insure my new baby, I’ll be talking to you for sure!) & should have narrowed it down by spring! This is kind of a big deal. I’ve always been afraid to drive full time and buy a car. But I’m really excited to be a car owner. It’ll make getting to the gym easier, and easier for the girls and I to go places without having to wait for a bus. I don’t plan on wasting gas; I’ll still walk short distances when need be. But it’s another major step for the famjam.

It’s really important to me to continue to check off boxes and grow and evolve. As I continue to be happier in my life, it’s only better for the girls, right? I need to teach them the importance of self growth, self love, never settling, and hard work. So, over the next few months, I’m going to do just that; grow, evolve, love myself a little more every day.

So, thanks everyone for your birthday well wishes. I super appreciate them all. I’m pretty much the luckiest person ever to have so many cool people in my life. This year is going to be even better than last year and I can’t wait to share those experiences with my girls, my crew, and even you, random person taking the time to read my blog.

Tell Me You Love Me

Let me tell you the story of MH’s terrible, no good, very bad day.

It actually started off pretty awesome. I had a good visit with my boss, with lots of great feedback. My most favourite member of the management team was filling in across the hall so I got to have a good catch up with him. I got some interviews ready for my latest YEG Fitness piece. Not a bad day at all.

Then a customer called in to discuss his experience yesterday. During this call, he mentioned that he had spoken to me, but he referred to me as “the pregnant lady.” “She’s very pregnant. Huge. Ready to burst.” As I am the only woman on staff, HE WAS VERY OBVIOUSLY TALKING ABOUT ME.

FIRST OF ALL, LET US GET ONE THING STRAIGHT;

THIS IS WHAT I LOOKED LIKE PREGNANT

THIS IS WHAT I LOOKED LIKE LAST WEEK

After ranting and complaining to my coworkers, I thought about doing what I always do when my ego is bruised: eat. I eat a ton of shitty food. When I first moved out here, and when my last serious relationship ended, the pizza dudes knew me by name. Some people drink; I eat garbage food. I started flipping through Skip the Dishes, trying to decide what fattening foods I should enjoy, when I closed the app and opened Instagram. I decided to post a progress pic, falling into the social media trap that if it’s on IG, it’s real. Maybe if I could convince the outside world that I was proud of my body, that maybe I could convince myself. I got feedback that ranged from hilarious to empowering. My favourite was from my gym, who made me tear up a little.

For once, social media used its powers for good, not evil! But while all of the rad encouragement was happening, I also didn’t order any junk food. Instead, 2/3 of the crew & I watched the Mae Young Classic (& decided that Candice LeRae is cute as a button) & then went for my Friday night run. By the end of the night, I was kind of kicking myself. I mean, don’t I always tell the girls that words only have power if you allow it? Don’t I have a thicker skin? Does it really matter what a customer thinks (of my appearance)? The only person who should care about how I look is me.

I guess even the toughest humans can end up with bruised egos. When you’re putting a lot of work into something, and someone knocks the wind out of your sails, it’s gonna sting. But you’ve got to handle it in a positive and constructive way. Don’t binge eat nachos; find a way to remind yourself that people who sometimes people just say stupid shit. There’s no ill intentions, they just don’t think before they speak (Dude, I am soooooo guilty of that!). But you can control your reaction. It’s okay to feel hurt, or offended, but don’t let it ruin your progress, whether it’s your health, your job, or your self esteem.

Anyone Else

I get asked a lot why I love crossfit. Let me tell you a story. 

Thursday, I went to the gym. The workout was tough. I had to scale some of the movements & weights. I was huffing and puffing through the WOD, envious of those who can get there every day, and were executing handstand push-ups flawlessly. Halfway through, I questioned why I was even there. But as they finished, they were rooting for me and congratulating me for making it through. That kind of teamwork, along with the results I see at Crossfit is why I continue to go. We celebrate each other’ successes and support each other. It’s such an amazing thing, to see people coming together to help everyone succeed.  That success helps me in my day to day life. The next day, I went to work and had a great shift. Then I really pushed myself and managed to run 0.4KM more than my Tuesday run. When I feel good mentally, it helps me push myself physically. It’s a cycle of wellness.  

But crossfit has also helped me embrace my body. I’m never gonna be a size six again. My thighs are always gonna be big. I’m gonna have a booty from squats. That teeny waist and dress size isn’t a realistic goal for me. But part of loving yourself is loving your body. I may never be thin, but I will be strong. My fellow crossfit ladies are strong, sexy, beautiful women. They have powerful bodies that are healthy and ideal for their body type. My goal is to get to their level, but with my body. I can’t worry about a scale number, or the size on a clothing tag. Just my own health. I will teach my girls that being healthy is more important that a body type. As their mom, it’s important for me to be the role model. I can’t have low self esteem & teach them to love themselves. I have to embrace my curves, my thick thighs. It’s been a hard road, but I’m getting there. 

I’m so glad that we are now celebrating healthy body types of all sizes, and not a “one size fits all” sort of beauty. We’re celebrating healthy, active, strong women. For the longest time, Nikki Bella was my fitness inspiration. She still is. Maybe I won’t have her body, but I can develop her commitment to fitness, her enthusiasm, the way she supports all women & wants everyone to succeed. I think we all need that type of attitude. We need to love our bodies. We need to build up other women. We need to get excited about fitness & health.  I may never be a size four like Nikki, but her journey as an athlete inspires me to continue to work on my own health. 

But lately, I’ve found myself really inspired and motivated by WWE Superstar Nia Jax. Her IG feed is loaded with body positivity. She doesn’t look like the average WWE woman. She’s strong, powerful, and unlike the Bertha Faye’s & Bull Nakano’s, she’s presented as more than just a one note monster character. She’s beautiful, she’s smart, witty, and assertive. Nia Jax is not a personality free monster designed to prey on the beautiful ingenues. She’s a fleshed out character, focused on her goals, which is to be a champion. My own daughters are big fans of Nia (and while they rooted for Bayley & Sasha, were LIVID that Nia didn’t get a special Wrestlemania entrance like her opponents. They said she deserved Tinashe singing her theme, and fireworks like the others). They think she’s beautiful, strong, and funny. When I was a kid, she’d be a mute monster. But my girls get to see a powerful woman portrayed as smart, sexy, as well as dominant. 


But more importantly, she’s not like most girls. She’s strong, athletic. She is in the best shape of her body type. And representation matters. Not every woman looks like Nikki Bella, and that’s totally okay. Some women are built like Nia Jax. Some women work their asses off like I do with the knowledge that size four is never gonna happen. Instead of feeling embarrassed, women should embrace their healthy. That’s why women like Nia Jax are so important. It’s important to see that healthy and fit mean something different to everyone.  

But that’s why I love crossfit. I remember working out at the GoodLife gyms, and hearing the snickers while I was on the treadmill or when I set my machine to a lower weight, as I was a beginner. I heard the giggles in the change room, as if a fat girl had no business there. It kept me out of a gym for four years. I don’t hear that at my gym anymore. It doesn’t matter if I scaled the workout, or finished last. There’s no mockery, just encouragement and acceptance. I’m sure women like Nia hear your mockery too. They see your tweets calling her fat, calling her Nia Snacks, etc. A friend of mine has come back to wrestling fandom after 10 years off and he called her “the fat chick.” His wife (who works in fashion), commented that she looked like a strong, powerful, woman. But those comments are why women like Nia are so important. We need to teach little girls that every woman’s body is different. A dress size or a scale number can’t be your goal (My Fitness Pal said my goal weight should be 118lbs!), but being in the best shape for your individual body should be. 

If you’re a woman who is actively working on her health, celebrate that work. Celebrate your body and what it can do. Celebrate your strength, your movements, your accomplishments. Hell, even celebrate that cheat day where you ate a large pizza with extra cheese. But celebrate your body, not the number on your dress tag or on a scale. 

Bright Lights

I have a confession to make.

Despite my attempts to get in shape, I no longer weigh myself.

I know I’ve gained a little bit of weight since I moved and attempted to adjust to a new time zone and schedule and gym, etc, but I don’t worry about how much. Instead, I focus on making little changes here and there to ensure that I’m staying healthy. Packing lunches, working out, etc.

  
I used to weigh myself every single morning. My day would be made by what that number said. That was the first six months of my weight loss journey. Every morning, that number. But I realized that I was letting that number define me instead of my progress. My pants were smaller, my face was thinner. I had more energy. My back no longer hurt. I don’t get migraines as often anymore. Why did that number mean more than all of those things? So, I stopped weighing myself and focused on building a healthy body in a way that still promoted body positivity for my daughters.

  
I believe in health, not thin, or “fat positive,” as I keep seeing on Tumblr. I think we as women need to buck society’s image of beauty, as it is skewed on both sides. Being morbidly obese or too thin is not good for you. We need to stop focusing on those numbers and focus on the healthiest body type for us. When I started going to crossfit, I wanted to work to be thinner. After a few months, I realized that wasn’t what I wanted; I wanted my aesthetic to be strong. I like the feeling of knowing I was stronger than I ever thought I could be. When I finish something that a year ago, I wouldn’t have been able to do, I feel very proud and I love that feeling and I like working towards that feeling of accomplishment. But I’ve also learned that strong =/= thin. I had to change my thinking. So, if my thighs are bigger, or my arms not quite lithe, that’s okay. I will never be the fashion industry definition of “thin.” But, I will be healthy and strong and a good role model for my daughters, as I’m not just embracing my body, I’m loving it enough to put good food into it (most of the time) and work on it to keep it running so I’ll be a part of their lives for a long time.

  
Which is why I ditched the scale. That number was hindering my progress. I was letting it define me instead of why I started working out in the first place; to build my self esteem and like myself better. If that number was hindering my progress, and becoming the source of my self worth. I’ve long made it clear that only I determine my self worth, not my friends, my boyfriend, or a number on a scale. Me. So, I decided that I didn’t care. I’d just keep on doing what I wanted to do in order to feel stronger and be healthier and that scale could just gather dust. As long as I’m happy in my own skin, that’s all that I need.

  

Wildest Dreams

I can only describe this week in one word;

Stupid.

Yes, this week was stupid.

Every single thing about my week (professionally) was super stupid. Between hiring and interviewing and being challenged by my editor, I honestly just kind of wanted to punch something in the face. Add in the realization that I’ve gained 10lbs since I moved here because my fitness mojo has been all off and you had a down right bitchy MHC (just ask one of my reps when he told me “I think I know why you’re gaining all of your weight back,” while I was eating a piece of banana bread. He’s still alive, I promise).

Fortunately, my spirits were lifted today with a series of events that made today not stupid, from snuggles with my five year old, and early access Pumpkin Spice Latte and a helpful pep talk with Matty the Bastard, my journalistic BFF. I even got my replacement cell phone boss lady phone, complete with a screen protector, because apparently you break ONE phone with your ass and Sony doesn’t trust you or something.

 

DO NOT put a Sony Z3 in your back pocket. Just DON’T DO IT
 
I guess I didn’t realize how much pressure I was putting on myself to be successful, and that caused me to make rookie mistakes that a nine year journalism veteran like me should know not to make. The hiring process at my store had me on edge. I mean, hiring the right person feels like it should be some kind of precise science and hiring the wrong person could spell disaster. And if I screw up either of these things, then I pretty much uprooted my family for nothing!

(If you’re thinking, Gosh MHC, I feel like you’re being a little bit melodramatic. I’m going to assume you’re new)

This made me pretty much the least tolerable human being for most of this week. I don’t like venting to people about why my life feels stupid. Hell, I don’t even like it when my significant other tries to pay for milk (although it’s very sweet and I need to learn to be more appreciative of his attempts to do nice things for me and not just flip out because I’m independent God damnit), so I’m especially not going to go crying like a little baby because I’m feeling overwhelmed about stuff that is largely made up and actually stupid. I need to handle stupid stuff on my own, without being melodramatic or crying. Why? Because I’m a grown ass woman, or so I’ve been told.

Instead, I decided to focus on finding GOOD in this situation. This involved changing my thinking. If this magazine doesn’t work out, there are others. I wouldn’t be the first writer to realize the first magazine offer I got isn’t the right one for me. I need to think of my editor calling me out as a positive thing. After all, she must see some potential in my writing to challenge me to do better. Otherwise, she would have just cut me loose. Freelancers are easy to come by. I should be grateful that she is trying to get my best out of me, because when she gets it, I’ll be a better writer! It’s okay that I’ve gained a little, this helps me remember why I started going to crossfit in the first place; to get in better shape and be healthier. Maybe I needed that bitchslap from the scale to get some motivation mojo, as I’ve been so bummed that the new gym isn’t as welcoming as my old one. Also, the girls will be in school, so I won’t feel guilty that I missed a month of their lives so I feel like if I go to the gym before work, that makes me a bad mom.If anything, I’ll be teaching them good habits that make me a good mom. I was chosen to be the boss, I need to act like it and start making decisions and standing by them.

But most importantly, I need to stop thinking that everything I do here, good or bad, means this whole thing was for nothing. I did this to better my family and that’s what I’m doing. I’m gaining management experience, which I can use to continue to move up in the world and earn a better living for my daughters. I’m growing as a writer and improving every day. I’ve made some rad new friends and I’m really happy with the current state of my life. I just need to stop worrying that if I don’t become the most successful person that I know, then I’ve somehow ruined my life. My success as a person is not defined by how quickly I became the best writer in Western Canada. My success as a person is defined by my being a good person and role model for my daughters, so that’s what I’ll do.

Success is rad, but success comes when you work for it, not stress over it. So, I’ll put in the work and the effort and the success will come when the work is done and in the interim, I’ll take stupid days and find the positive, even if it seems like there is none to be found.

  

Show Me Your Fangs

I have a confession; I waste a lot of time on social media. 

When all of your friends are two time zones away, I get lonely, so I waste time on social media. My favourite places to waste time are on George & Brad Takei’s respective FB pages. Today he posted a hilarious meme that had me cracking up;

  
Don’t worry, all the Tumblr Social Justice Warriors were out in full force, explaining how Barbie was designed to fulfill men’s fantasies & create an unrealistic standard for women & He-Man was half alien (no he wasn’t) & little boys know the difference between a doll’s body & a real one because it’s make believe & girls shouldn’t have Barbies or Princess a Dolls because they teach them how to be damsels in distress. 

Let me tell you that all of this is bullshit. 

When I was a little girl, I played with Barbie. I had Dr. Barbie, Rock Star Barbie, and yes, I was gifted Reporter Barbie at the age of six. I didn’t see Barbie’s waist or hair & think “I have body image issues!” I was excited that she had a bad ass job & after work, she could dress up to go out with my Jordan Knight doll. 

Anyone who thinks Barbie is somehow hurting little girls makes me sad, because Barbie gets a bum rap. Barbie has had 150 careers, owns her own house, her own car, stables, an RV, a moped, among other things. No disrespect to the men out there that do respect women and their career choices, but I’m pretty sure a doll designed to fulfill the desires of men wouldn’t be an independent bad ass who owns her own stuff & works hard. What I learned from Barbie is that girls can do damn near anything they want. My daughters play with Barbie (although the younger two prefer Ever After High) and they always liked that Barbie was a vet, or a nurse, or a pilot. Yes, there are cooking sets, or beach dolls, but all people eat & go to the beach. That’s not sexist; that’s liking to eat & go to the beach. 

 

even Barbie understands the importance of converged journalism
 
What grinds my gears is the idea that boys wouldn’t feel body image pressure from a toy, but girls are fragile flowers that must be protected. Boys have body image issues too. While I don’t feel that the media or celebrities have the power to make you feel badly about yourself, as you choose how you feel about yourself & have the power to change it if you don’t like it, saying a little boy wouldn’t feel inadequate because it’s make believe play (you know, like BARBIE) is silly. Personally, I don’t get it because everyone on Eterna looked like He-Man, even Bo, that dick that pined for Adora. Maybe Eterna’s schools have a heavy focus on PE. 

 
Every super hero for boys is ripped. Did Captain America have the dad bod? Nope. What about Chris Pratt, who women say “got hot” when he got in shape for Guardians of the Galaxy? Men are bombarded with images of the triangle body. Again, I don’t think a magazine or a celebrity can give you body image issues, you have them because of you & only you can learn to embrace them or fix them, I’ve said this before. But if you did believe that, then why wouldn’t you believe that a toy could also affect a little boy as Barbie would a girl? 

  
At the end of the day, no toy, no magazine, no celebrity can make you feel badly. No words can hurt you unless that’s how you already feel about yourself. People call me fat, crazy, whatever, but I choose to love myself & focus on being healthy with a eating healthy & the odd treats in moderation & Crossfit. Words only hurt if you give them the power to hurt. But if He-Man is make believe & kids can’t learn body image issues from toys, let’s stop saying it about Barbie, as she’s cut from the same plastic. 

and we can finally focus on something important!

Rest to Get Better

Since the rest of my life seems to involve writing (I just wrote an awesome article about a lifetime achievement award winner! So excited!), acquiring many jobs, scheduling interviews with a time zone difference, making lists & staring blankly at the ceiling whilst I try to make life decisions like a real adult, Imma gonna write about the stuff in my life that I’m not screwing up. Parenting & fitness. 

I’m always striving to be a better MHC than I was yesterday. It’s really important to me to set the right examples, do the right things, live the right life so that the three minor children that I’m charged with getting to adulthood see that you can be anything by doing anything you set your mind to. It’s why I’m still working for the goal of finally landing a full time job in journalism, because I need to show them that you don’t give up on what you really want in life. You work hard & keep trying & if you get knocked down, you get back up. 

Another part of this is body image. It’s very important that I show my daughters that you should live a healthy & active lifestyle, eat right & love your body. It’s not about “skinny” or “fat shaming,” as someone accused me on Facebook after I posted a gym related status update; it’s about taking pride in who you are. Most obese people learned poor eating habits from their parents. Obesity is linked to low self esteem. My self esteem was low for years because of my weight & while it isn’t perfect, it’s getting there. Obesity is linked to many health problems. So, my job as mom is to show them how to be healthy. 



You want progress? Work for it.

I refuse to make excuses. I want a healthy self esteem, I want to live longer, I want to be the best possible MHC, then I’ve got to work for it. I think of workouts as appointments I schedule with myself. I am the boss of my own life (a really crappy boss who can’t make major decisions), and I wouldn’t miss a meeting with my boss, right? No. I wouldn’t. So, I look at my fitness schedule the same way. Part of that has been taking up crossfit. While there are some people who make fun of my “torture cult,” &  make fun of my elitist gym with poor training, I just laugh. My gym is full of the most encouraging & welcoming people on Earth, always encouraging each other & making people feel welcome. I came in as a terrified newbie that couldn’t even do a real burpee. The coaches & athletes helped me with proper form, cheered me on through the hardest workouts (or as the Overlord calls it, “encouragement yelling”) & I’m stronger & in better shape than I’ve been in in years.

 

Because I’m always challenging myself, I entered a crossfit competition! One of the coaches at my gym said it would be super fun (he lied; it’s actually terrible), but every Friday night or Saturday morning I truck myself to the gym to do the crossfit open workouts, including the workout that required me to life weights that were five lbs heavier than my personal best. BTW that totally sucked. I have one more week to go & I’ll have achieved my current goal of getting through it & living to tell the tale. I brought the girls with me, and while my eldest & youngest daughters colour, my middle daughter, whom we call the Overlord for her plots to take over the world, became absolutely enamoured with crossfit. 



When my friend (who teases me regularly about my crossfit love) decided to try it, she made him a practice WOD



She decided one of our coaches was the most amazing because she is “pretty like a princess & stronger than boys!” I even had to postpone a trip to Windsor because we couldn’t do the workout early, open days are Saturdays & she found little jobs for herself, like bringing protein bars & fresh fruit & making herself the official cheering section. She would tell me after every week that when she is big, she wants to be strong & healthy & lift heavy weights & have muscles & be stronger than boys. Mommy is strong & that’s cool! I may not have set any records (my 15.2 score was a whopping six & 15.4 was 13), but my daughter saw being healthy & strong & working hard as being super cool, so right now, I feel like I won parenting. 

My job as mom is to show my daughters that they can do anything; they can have any career they want, they can be strong, fast, brave, & they can have the confidence to do that. But I can’t tell them, I have to show them. So, while I’m currently in 48 thousandth place & won’t be going to the Crossfit Games, I feel like I won, because I showed my girls that with hard work & determination, they can accomplish anything. 

All Of Me

I’m always afraid to write things about fitness because every time I do, I get accused of fat shaming.

I don’t really understand “fat shaming.” It seems like something made up for fat girls to bully thin girls by calling them bags of bones etc. I am currently a fat girl. I used to be a fatter girl, once weighing almost 300lbs. But now, I’m under 200, a size 12 & halfway to my goal body type. I’m not working to be thin; I’m working to be strong. I see my fitness idols Trish Stratus (thanks to her Stratusphere Yoga DVD’s & lifestyle tips I’ve lost 32lbs in 16 weeks) & WWE Diva Nikki Bella rocking their strong & fit bodies. Bella is regularly called fat & has even been nicknamed “Thikki” by her detractors, but I see a strong girl with some killer arms. I also know she & Stratus train hard for their bodies, eat a healthy, balanced diet & their rewards pay off. I’m training with the help of the Psych Major & her hubby & using Stratusphere yoga as well as cardio. It’s hard ass work, but I’m taking this time of my life to focus on the person that I want to be, and that is strong physically & emotionally.

Courtesy: Nikki Bella's Instagram (theNikkiBella)
Courtesy: Nikki Bella’s Instagram (theNikkiBella)

But I digress.

I am fat. I am well aware that I am fat. I am working to change the fact that I am fat. I am doing it because I want to feel better about myself and be healthier for my children. I am also an extremely beautiful & charming woman & even if I were a size 40, I’d still be beautiful. I have a friend who is fat. She is dieting right now because she wants to find a job & she feels her weight is holding her back. I don’t feel ashamed when people call me fat or post ads promoting bikinis saying that we should aspire to be thin. That’s not true either. My four best friends all have very different body types. What is “thin” for them might be a size 14. What is “fit” for another is a size two. These numbers mean nothing. What matters is that you’re healthy & in the right shape for your body type. Own that body type!

Courtesy @trishstratuscom
Courtesy @trishstratuscom

However, I see nothing wrong with pointing out truth. When my brother said he wanted to go to the gym, I said “you’ll need to change your diet, because you only eat s***.” I had to give up a lot to see results. I’ve cut down on carbs (not completely, I still enjoy potatoes, pasta & bread in moderation), started packing lunches for work & gave up soda completely. If a friend asks me if the dress makes them look fat, I say “yes,” & hope they’d do the same for me. The Psych Major & her husband are always brutally honest & I love them for it. You shouldn’t sugar coat reality. Saying “men love curves” does not mean “being obese is cool.” Saying “you’re not fat, you’re beautiful,” reaffirms the idea that you can’t be fat & beautiful. Why not accept that you’re fat (or thin) & beautiful? If you don’t like it, go freaking fix it or if you’re cool with it, be cool & don’t get butthurt when someone says you’re fat (or thin). If you’ve made 1000 excuses about no time, you’re too fat to do (insert exercise here), then you’ve made the choice to be overweight & you don’t get to feel badly when people call you on it, nor do you get to bully thin women, who may be fighting their own body image battle. You chose to accept your body, so embrace it. Words lose their power when you take the power away! People call me fat all of the time. They say I’m crazy sometimes too. And I’m a bitch. Whatever. They’re words. They used to hurt me, until I realized that’s all they are; words. I could scream “POTATO” in someone’s face & it has the same power. Fat is a body type, not a personality trait. If you don’t like it, talk to your doctor & work on it. If you’re cool with it, own that big butt & wear it with pride. Same goes for you thin girls. If you don’t like it, speak to your doctor about safely gaining weight. If you’re cool, rock those plunging necklines I can’t wear & work them.

Courtesy: Glamour UK
Courtesy: Glamour UK

I guess I’m saying don’t focus on some scale number or dress size. Focus on what works best for your body type with your health care professional & get the body you want to have, whether you’re cool with your love handles or you want to be jacked like Chyna. I know I want to be strong. But only you have the power to make yourself feel like crap. Once you choose to take the power away from bullies & use it to better yourself, you’ll be much better off.

20140501-234137.jpg

Day 16: Body Image

I used to love my body…then I got fat.

20140215-101649.jpg

I got REALLY fat. I weighed almost 300 lbs @ the time I graduated college & had my second daughter. I felt disgusting, so I worked out, did weight watchers & lost 70lbs.

20140215-101131.jpg

But it’s a yoyo thing; I get depressed, I gain weight. I get motivated, I drop it. I had friends tell me “you look fine!” Maybe I do, but not to me. I think I’m fat. I can understand how Rachel Frederickson ended up underweight during her recent stint on the Biggest Loser. When you’ve been a thin girl & now you’re a fat girl, there is nothing more intoxicating than the compliments, the scale number going down, the smaller pants. It’s amazing! So, you keep on wanting it & that’s how you go too far.

Courtesy NBC
Courtesy NBC

One of the things I realized is that my low self esteem kills my relationships. I choose men who are narcissistic & then feed their egos because I don’t like myself. I think it’s okay to be ignored, neglected because I’m a fat & ugly basket case & they’re great guys & are “putting up with me.” That’s not true; they were lucky to have me! I treated them well & was supportive & loving. Then I drain my friends because I feel like I let those men and my family down by not being good enough and kill those relationships by feeling unworthy of friendships. I need to get out of the mindset that I’m unworthy or ugly. I need to look @ myself & think I’m pretty & bright & sweet & kind & I deserve to be loved. But I don’t see pretty; I see fat. So, I decided to take control & stop being fat.

I started eating better. No more days of not eating while focusing on work, the kids, etc. Three meals & one snack. I watch my calories & fat through the Lose It! app. I talk to my best friend the Psych Major (who, along with her husband, are personal trainers) about the right eating habits & I work out every night. Every night is Stratusphere Yoga. I did the 30 squat challenge & I’m on Day 17 of the ab challenge. I’m going to do 30 days of push-ups next & come spring, I’ll be ready to start couch to 5k. All of these things have helped me safely lose 15lbs thus far. I have a long way to go, but I prefer to look at how far I’ve come.

20140215-102426.jpg

I need to take responsibility for my own happiness, my own self esteem. After all, if I can’t love myself, how can anyone else, so I’m taking responsibility for my weight & I’m committing myself to losing it. After all, there are no magic pills or fad diets. The only way to lose weight is to eat right, drink lots of water & get up off of your ass & exercise. So, that’s what I’m going to do & finally lose the weight & gain my self esteem back. It might take a long time, but that’s okay. I’m in no hurry to do anything. But the more I work towards getting my body to the way I want it to be, the more confident I feel and the happier I am. All of these things will count towards me getting to be the person I know I’m capable of being.

20140215-230947.jpg