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.

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. 

48 To Go

As I continue to work towards my fitness goals (down 40.5lbs), I’m learning how much money I waste on…well, crap food.

A little progression pic. See my 40lbs loss...and my various phones.
A little progression pic. See my 40lbs loss…and my various phones.

Between my Tim Horton’s Tea and my Starbucks chai tea and my restaurant lunches on paydays, I’m not eating as well as I should be, especially if I want to lose the last of the weight. I’m over halfway to my goal and I’ve dropped two sizes and plan to drop two more, as well as get stronger. Eating that crap is not going to help me. Not to mention it’s pricey and with summer coming, I want to be able to take the girls on a much needed and well earned family vacay to the zoo, as the overlord has been waiting since she was two years old to see hopping kangaroos. Not to mention that in the next three months, I will be attending a WWE Live event and “Queen” Katy Perry with the littles, as well as Queen and Ed Sheeran with friends (still accepting offers for someone to accompany me to see Ed Sheeran. You get to spend my birthday with me and go to Ed Sheeran for free, as my friends are all “I don’t like him, he’s a hobbit.” Jerks), so having the extra cash would be nice.

In order to finally kicking the junk food habit, I’m imposing my #29DaysJunkFoodFree. From June 1 – 30/14, with the only exception being the soon to be teen’s birthday, I’m going to cut out all junk food, fast food, caffeine, and alcohol. I’m going to put the money I would have spent in a jar to see how much money I waste on junk food. Obviously I’ll need to find some workarounds, as my coworkers are planning a team outing (so I’ll have to order salads and drink water), but I will not eat fast food, or chicken wings, or drink, or have any caffeine. I’ll see how much of a difference it makes on my weight loss goals as well as on my wallet. I’m going to hopefully lose more weight while fattening up my wallet.

This just cracks me up...and will help me kick cupcakes.
This just cracks me up…and will help me kick cupcakes.

Part of trying to live better is taking accountability for what I eat. Cutting out junk food and caffeine and restaurant foods will help me live longer by cutting out excessive fats and unhealthy foods, but it’s going to put money back into my pocket, which will help me support my family. I have friends trying it with me, with each picking one exception day and we’re all going to go #29DaysJunkFoodFree. I hope to see awesome results and get one step closer to living healthy and well and teaching my kids to teach them healthy eating habits too.

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