For Now

In the never ending story that is my life, we’ll call this chapter “the time everything absolutely fucking sucked.”

I’ll keep the major details to myself, as there are a great many things that I still choose not to share with the internet, but trust me when I say this week absolutely fucking sucks. Because it sucks, I’m seriously contemplating functional alcoholism (despite the fact that I rarely drink), or maybe full Brie Mode (for those of you that don’t watch Total Divas, click here for the definition of Brie Mode).

Despite the fact that I have the most amazing friends back home, sometimes I feel like I can’t talk to anyone, because they all tell me “you’re so strong, you’re Superwoman.” I want to be a superhero, and that bad ass woman they all tell me that I am, but am I? I don’t feel very super. I feel more like “pitifully average human who is drowning under the pressure to be a good mom and a good writer and a good employee and a good Crossfitter and pay bills while still looking pretty and maintaining a social life, despite having one friend that isn’t a coworker.” Being a one woman operation is tough kids.

We live in a FB filtered world; no one wants to admit that their life isn’t perfect and maybe they aren’t the superhero that their inner circle thinks that they are. No one wants to admit that they sometimes think they’re a shitty parent or looks at their bank statement, which is currently negative $36 and wonders how Xmas will be wonderful when cheerleading fees need to be paid and the gas bill is due and one kid needs new glasses and another has a field trip & it all costs money. No one wants to admit that sometimes they just want a night off from trying to be the best and just go out with friends, but since you don’t really have any, it’s hard to go places (sometimes I feel like I’m in the ninth grade again, where I wonder if people actually like me, or if they just want me to help them with the grownup equivalent of helping them with their English homework). No one ever admits that they feel like their very personality is somehow deficient, and you are somehow too weird or annoying for people to actually like, so you feel like you can’t really be yourself around anyone. These are things we just don’t do. Instead, everything is perfect. Everything is fine. Life is awesome.

In my life, everyone is counting on me to be so damned inspirational. Spoiler alert: I’m not inspiring; Beyoncé is inspiring. I’m just me. I’m a mostly unimportant writer and kind of okay assistant cell phone manager who talks too much.

Sometimes I wonder why it’s not socially acceptable to admit you’re not killing it at life right now. That maybe you’re lonely, or stressed out, or you just don’t really feel very good about yourself. Wouldn’t it be so nice to be able to say “I hate literally everything. You ever felt like that?” And someone relate to that? Maybe then we wouldn’t feel like it’s somehow not okay to have moments of self doubt, or sad, or stressed. Instead, we push ourselves to be the superhero we’ve made ourselves out to be and you don’t want to let anyone down. I think it’s harder for women, because we’re taught at an early age that we’re in competition with each other to be the prettiest and the smartest, meeting all of the Game of Life checkpoints while also never getting angry, or feeling less than confident, and God forbid you aren’t a size six! So, we all kind of compete for the best highlight reel and you can’t really live up to the hype.

Sorry guys, I’m not Wonder Woman. I’m just little old me; a plain, boring human who struggles with self esteem and time management, and sometimes is overwhelmed by the enormity of her responsibilities. I’m actually not sorry. If I’m going to be some inspirational ray of fucking sunshine, I need to be an authentic human being. Authentic human beings sometimes hate everything and feel like they suck at everything and look to someone they think has their shit together and goes “man, I wish I had my shit together and was half as awesome as they are.” I look at another manager in my company and wish I was half as cool as she was! She doesn’t care what people think; she just does her thing. She doesn’t second guess every word or thought, hoping she didn’t do something wrong by being herself. She just slays. Who knows? Maybe she gets days where she feels like I do too and looks to someone else to inspire them. Maybe it’s Beyoncé. Who knows?

So, if you ever feel like that, let me be the first to tell you it’s totally okay. Humans are not meant to live by the standards of social media. Humans are messy, complicated beings who sometimes aren’t happy. So, embrace those moments where you feel like the world is crushing you. Allow yourself to feel it, so you can get back up again. It’s okay to feel down; it’s just not okay to stay there, not even for me. In order to be on top, sometimes you’ve got to slide back down a bit. Since I’m feeling down, there is nowhere else to go but up! So, I’ll focus all of my energy on accomplishing all of the things that I’ve set my mind to…

…if not, there’s always functional alcoholism, right?! Brieeeeee Mooooodeeee!

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. 

The Danger In Starting A Fire

Moving is stupid. Never do it.

Over the last few months, I’ve gone through a plethora of emotions ranging from euphoric to miserable. This past week has just been beyond stupid. I’ve considered closing my blog because I wasn’t comfortable writing about my feelings & I sometimes wonder if I’m using my writing because I’m rather lonely out here in Cow Province & I miss regular chats with friends back home. I had this grand vision that I would get out here & my editor would love my work, I’d land a full time gig & my new gym would be as awesome as my old gym & everything would be perfect.

Yeah, nope. 

Instead I’ve been miserable at my gym, hating my job & trying to overcome years of mistrust in a day. So, I’m homesick & sometimes contemplate just moving home in the spring (my friend Damanda is sending a U-Haul). But, I realize I’m not giving myself any time to adjust to anything. Like, at all. 

I’m such an ambitious little creature, that I assume it’ll be easy to adjust when most people say it takes a year to adjust to a new community. I get better at trusting people, but it’s a process & I can’t rush that process. I’ll warm up to the gym, it’ll take time. There are some cool people & some not cool people. But I’ll get used to it. It’ll never be as awesome as my old gym, but still good. My new job isn’t journalism, but again, new audience, it’s a process. 

I keep trying to rush to get to the part where this feels like home, but it’s gonna take time. The difference is I’m going to allow myself that time to get used to how things are done here. If you’ve ever switched provinces/states, you’ll understand. Some days it just feels weird. And I just want to fit in with the cow people (maybe I should stop calling them cow people). But I realize it’s not as easy for some people. And I’ve got to allow myself time to get used to my life here. It’s okay to feel homesick. It’s okay to feel lonely. It’s okay to miss my gym & my friends & DECENT DAMN PIZZA. WHY IS THERE NO GOOD PIZZA?! But I kept trying to think it was wrong to go through periods of sadness. My birthday was a great day, but I’ve been lonely ever since. It was the first year it wasn’t a clusterfuck, which was nice. But it was also the first year I didn’t have belated drinks with Melissa, or dinner with Rena & Damanda. And it was just kind of sad. And over the past few days, as things have been sucky, I realized how much I missed having nearby friends who could watch the older kids while I took the littlest to the Voodoo Witch Doctor, as she’s allergic to every medication ever made, or Bree hugs. Or the fact that people here call shopping carts baskets. NO. THEY ARE SHOPPING CARTS.  But I didn’t want to adjust to the culture shock. I wanted to be awesome. Now, I’m going to focus on making Cow Province my home…& maybe stop calling it Cow Province. 

***However, I have only seen geese once, so good job Cow Province****

  
Same with everything else, I need to give myself time to open up, time to build trust, time to get comfortable. And it’s okay to want to do that slowly. It’s okay to not want to rush. It’s okay to have moments of doubt or fear. All of these things are fine. People who love me understand why I’m a bit batty & love me anyway. They get it & will let me muddle through on my own until I get to a place where I can fully trust people the way I want to. But it takes time. 

  
The good thing about time is we have a lot of it. Every day is another day to make awesome. So, that’s what I will do. Make tomorrow awesome. And the next day. And the next. But the only way to make this place home is to work on it. So, I’m going to put up curtains, pictures & BUY A DAMN KITCHEN TABLE NEXT WEEK. I’m very excited about my table. And each day I wake up I’ll feel better & better about living here, until one day, it’s home. And everything else will come in time, so I won’t rush the process anymore. 

  

It’s A Good Life

Unless you’ve lived under a rock since October, you know all about my latest obsession: crossfit.

That’s right bitches; MHC is gonna be more bad ass than usual.

I know there are people out there who claim it’s dangerous, I’ll die, it’s expensive, but you can’t fake results, which I’m getting in spades. I can already lift 40+lbs more than when I started & I completed my testing with sore muscles & a sense of accomplishment.

95lbs down since January!
95lbs down since January!

My greatest accomplishment came yesterday, when the owner of my gym was going to skip the WOD, because she hadn’t done one in a bit & it was challenging. She said that the whole time…until I finished it. I’ve only been going for two months, and I finished the whole damn thing. I didn’t just finish it; I finished it with a score comparable to those who have been training for over a year. She said there was no excuse for her now & was impressed by my ability to go out & work my ass off (literally) to finish it.

This is the story of my life; I get up off of my ass & earn stuff. I think that’s why I’m more determined than most; I have never been given anything. I earned the right to be a mother in a court of law. I earned my education by fighting tooth and nail just to attend school. I earned my portfolio by never taking no for an answer. I earned my current punch clock job by telling my boss that I wasn’t leaving the interview until I got it so he may as well just hire me. Nothing for me has ever come terribly easy, either because I made dumb choices or because I trusted bad people. But either way, I got through it all & I’ve been blessed with my beautiful life. I think that’s why I’m always determined to find happiness where there is nothing, because I know what it’s like to have nothing. Because of this, I find ways to push through ugliness & get what I want in the end. I set goals & achieve them; the end.

/home/wpcom/public_html/wp-content/blogs.dir/0c4/15602302/files/2014/12/img_8095.jpg

My friends say I’m impossible because I know what I want & I go get it, and if I can’t get it, I focus on all of the many other things I want to achieve before my time expires. There’s always “there’s something else, someone else, plan B.” In my life, there is no Plan B (let’s all ask my legal professors how well Plan B goes). I wanted to be a published writer, and I am. I wanted to get in shape, so I did. I wanted to be free to live my life without abusive or controlling people, so I did. You get the idea. I know what I want & I get it. If it doesn’t work the first time; I try again. Once I get my mind on that’s where I belong, there’s not much changing it, mostly because I’ve tried to change it myself & my gut doesn’t lie. If I feel that strongly, it’s because there’s facts, evidence, and my beautiful heart is telling me to follow it, so I do. 99% of the time I’ll get what I want. It’s not a flawless victory, but it’s still a pretty amazing success rate.

/home/wpcom/public_html/wp-content/blogs.dir/0c4/15602302/files/2014/12/img_8093.jpg

So, much like my masochistic relationship with running, I’m going to continue my masochistic relationship with crossfit while setting goals, achieving them & repeat. I will never be the girl that quits. I will always be the girl that succeeds, and I will never understand why that’s a bad thing to some. Maybe I am impossible. Maybe I do need a Plan B. But I don’t really understand why. Things only don’t work if you don’t work for them. Things only fall apart if you don’t try. And even if they do, there’s another Plan A in another part of my life that needs my attention & if I’m right about where I should live, who I belong with, the job I should have, the rest will work itself out in time. So, I’ll focus on all of the other millions of things I want to accomplish, so when my life is over, I can say I lived it well & got almost everything I wanted. I would hate to be thinking “what if.”

/home/wpcom/public_html/wp-content/blogs.dir/0c4/15602302/files/2014/12/img_8018.jpg

In the interim, I’ll just continue to achieve everything else I want in my beautiful life, & my daughters will learn from me how to be self reliant, brave & successful, as well as grateful for what life has afforded them. It may be impossible, but it’s a beautiful lesson, & I like it better than “meh. You tried. Settle for something less.” They’ll have learned even if it’s hard, you finish the workout. You try one more time for that dream job. You reach for that brass ring. If you don’t get it, then reach for it again. And eventually all of your dreams will come true.

IMG_8064

Run For Your Life

Every other morning, my alarm goes off @ 7am & I haul my tired ass out of bed & go running. I turn on my Runkeeper app & my angry white boy music & run for 35 minutes in the hope that I’ll get closer to my goal of a 6 minute mile. I’m hoping to participate in a 5K zombie run with some friends this autumn, and cardio is a big part of my weight loss plan.

However, I kind of hate running. Like, a lot. It’s tiring and sweaty & makes my hamstrings sore & crappy. But, I do it because I have a somewhat masochistic relationship with running, because when my Runkeeper app says “activity complete,” and my time was faster than the day before & I ran further than I did that day, I’m sickeningly happy.

IMG_6572.JPG

My masochistic relationship with running has been helping me cut out my love of garbage food. After my month of no junk food, I kind of went on a bit of a binge, and my weight loss has stalled (the three pound loss this month, bringing the total I’ve lost to 63lbs hammers that point home) & I have to realize that, like everything in life, I need to be accountable for what I put in my body.

There was a time, just four months ago, that I couldn’t run for a minute without being winded. When I started Couch to 5K, that one minute killed me. But I kept at it & I can run almost 5K. As is with everything in life, little victories, get us to where we want to be. That one minute turned to three, then five, to where I am now. Everything requires work & perseverance, & then you’ll get there.

This brings me to my masochistic relationship with running & my love of junk food. When I eat that donut, I’ve just erased that run…that horrible, horrible run. That twisted sense of accomplishment when I’ve gotten better than I did the previous run was just undone by a freaking donut. Why would I torture my body for the sick thrill of that victory just to ruin it because donuts are really yummy?

So, it’s time that I break up with junk food. Healthy living is 80% diet & I’m probably only doing 60% & that’s just not good enough. I have health & fitness goals & I’m not going to achieve them if I’m not giving them my all.

IMG_6597.PNG

So, I’m sorry donuts. While I’m sure we’ll get together every once in awhile, every couple of months or so, I have goals to reach & long term health to think about so it’s not you, it’s me. I’m thinking about what’s best for me, my body & what I want to teach my daughters about food choices & donuts, they don’t include you.

IMG_6596.JPG

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