Some Things I Hate More Than Others.

Some Things I Hate More Than Others.

I dread exercise.

I basically despise healthy food.

I loathe what the scale reflects back at me when I step on it.

But more than any of that, I hate hate HATE how I look and how I feel in my own skin.

*Flashback to about 30 days ago*

When I look in the mirror, I don’t see the person I used to be OR the person I want to be. I see someone who has been comfortable just “being” and not someone who has a goal to work towards right now.

I was a dancer forever. I was thin with a great booty and fabulous boobs (sorry daddy). I was in shape and could contort my body all manner of ways. Then I hit college. And got married. And then I had babies. And life, and blah blah blah excuses blah blah blah.

After Charlie died, I was diagnosed with anxiety and PTSD, started taking an antidepressant and anxiety medication, and the baby weight just kinda stuck around. I didn’t care about anything, especially that. In fact, I jokingly called the extra 15 pounds I was carrying around “a souvenir.” The comfort food and dinners we ordered for delivery almost every night, combined with an overwhelming sadness made any desire to care about my looks just go away. I didn’t care about myself, just what I was missing with my son not here. 

And then you know what happens when you kept 15 pounds of souvenir baby weight from your first child and then you get pregnant again and gain 40 pounds? All of a sudden you are paralyzed by the extra weight you need to take off. Some came off naturally, and some from building a house and working outside in our new yard and then some? Some just stuck around. 

I became content and complacent and ok with where I was.

Four years ago, I woke up one morning, and like Forrest Gump, I started running. I was done being stuck. I was going to do something  My goal was to run a 5k and that very quickly turned into a goal of running a half marathon. I ran and ran and ran some more. 

I trained. I got fit (but not super fit). I felt amazing. And then I proceeded to run four half marathons and ten 10Ks and who knows how many 5Ks in four years. Hell, I even ran a 10K and a Half on 2 consecutive mornings. Something I never would have thought I could do. But I did it because I said I was going to do it. And maybe because I’m a little crazy.

GSC Finish

Then I quit. I quit running. I quit it all.

My knees hurt. My toes hurt. My arthritis was really bothering me. 

And then I got a divorce and became a single mom. The decision was mutual between us, but apparently, even if you KNOW that everything’s ok and happy and friendly, there’s still a sadness and grieving period that lingers over the newly divorced. 

And y’all, do you know how single moms (at least this one) eat? Well, ones who don’t want to cook two separate meals because their kid is a picky eater just suck it up and end up eating whatever junk is in the house. Or cereal. Or sometimes both. The easier the dinner, the better. And we all know that “easier” and “delicious” are slang for “pretty shitty for you.”

Ok. You can flashback to now. Flash forward. Whatever.

Anyway, now here I am. 40 and a half. Single, and ridiculously happy.

But I am so incredibly freaking uncomfortable in my own skin.

I’m pretty sure the last straw for me was somewhere around mid-April when I was ordering my Listen To Your Mother dress from eShakti and had to measure all over my body. When I saw the numbers that came back from a measuring tape, I literally cried because those numbers didn’t lie. I couldn’t fudge those numbers like I could the scale for things like “I’m wearing clothes” or “I’ve not pooped today” or any other reason to take 2 pounds off the number.

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That was when I realized how much weight I needed to lose. And how many inches needed to be gone. And how I really just wanted to feel more like myself inside my skin.

Here’s where I tell you my big secret: I don’t consider myself fat. I consider myself uncomfortable, a little fluffy, shapeless, and quite honestly, miserable. Now by some standards, I’m obese. By others, I’m still seen as normal. Whatever. It’s my body. I don’t like it.

I decided it was time to try something… anything. Just make a change.

Like they were reading my mind, I happened to receive an invitation to a take a VIP spin class at a new cycle joint in Dunwoody, CycleBar, and thought to myself, “Hmm. This is my chance to be like Jill Kargman on Odd Mom Out and all the UES women who sell their souls to the instructors at SoulCycle and beg to be yelled at and told to ‘man the eff up, warriors, so you can be thin and hot and sexxxxay’ and yes yes YES! I’m in!”

So I signed up for a free class.

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Well, my class just happened to be two days after I started the 21 Day Fix program my friend Sara told me about and sold me on. 21 Day Fix is a Beachbody program that basically tells you to “stop eating so damn much, girlfriend” and makes you exercise for a half hour each day. The first two workouts kicked my butt. Literally. My butt felt like it had been sno’nuff kicked by a zebra for hours on end.

So I saddled up at CycleBar for my class, alone and scared and so excited I could hardly stand it, but already unable to move from the 21 Day Fix workouts. I planned on sucking it up, going all in, and being the unicorn during the class so I could then going home to declare, “I LOVE EXERCISE!”

photo: WSJ

Jill Kargman, Odd Mom Out. Photo: WSJ

Only, ouch.

I was hungry and tired and so sore I couldn’t brush my teeth and I wanted my mommy. And then I realized, no. I don’t want my mommy. I want the body I had when I was 25 years old. So I did what any woman would do. I signed up for another class. And then another.

Now here I am. After completing a full 21 days of 21 Day Fix and 3 CycleBar classes, I can say that I am still not anywhere near my 25 year old body, but I’m down 5 full pounds and 17 inches (no, that is not a typo). If you feel like it, click HERE to see my before and after photos.

As far as cooking and eating right, while single, on 21 Day Fix? Well, I’ve started cooking my weekly meals on Sundays before Henry comes home and I’m ready for the week with lunches and dinners (for the most part). That gives me more time to spend with Henry during the week, to get in the daily workouts, and even hit the pool (because tan fat is better than pasty fat, right?) with the kid.

I still hate exercise and I still basically hate eating healthy because oh my gosh Krispy Kreme donuts are like little round bites of heaven and way better than a salad, but I love the direction this is going.

Because you know what? I hate feeling this way in my own skin WAY worse than I hate eating baked chicken and plain greek yogurt.

**Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links and a link to my personal Beachbody Coach site. If you have questions about Beachbody or 21 Day Fix, feel free to email me at janasthinkingplace@me.com.**

When The Glass Is Half Empty

Being an optimist stinks sometimes.

No, really, it does.

You see? When you’re happy and positive and the one people look for to feel better all the time (read: Me), it gets to be a heavy burden to bear, especially when you really just want to have a bad day.

Right now, I just want to be grumpy.

My glass is half empty.

I want to stay in bed and watch trashy TV. I want there to be a pizza delivered to my house every night for a week so I don’t have to think about cooking or eating or cleaning up. Do you ever get sick of eating or thinking about eating? I do. Sometimes it just seems like such an exhausting thing to do. Like showering. And doing laundry. And doing all the mundane, but necessary, daily tasks.

Sometimes, even the most optimistic of us need to give in to the dark side of our brains. Because even though there is always light on the other side of darkness, there’s always darkness behind some of the light. Sometimes, even the happiest and chipper of us need to wallow in our sadness and exhaustion before we can break through to the other side.

Luckily for me, it’s often short-lived that I feel like this. I’m sure right now it’s a combination of a lot of things.

I want to be a stay at home mom again. I feel like I’m missing so much of my son’s growing up. I want the meds we started HL on to work just right every single day. I need to vacuum and mop and scrub toilets until my fingers bleed because the house is disgusting. The house is a disaster and in spite of doing 5 loads of laundry, there seems to be more that I keep finding. It’s either raining or snowing or too cold/cloudy to dry out the back yard so the dog can’t play outside as much as she needs to. She begs and barks and is generally a pain in the ass. I’ve got writer’s block. The husband is traveling almost this entire month and quite frankly, I miss him.

Depression? Maybe. Anxiety? Most definitely. The stage of life I’m in? Yes.

So what do I do?

Well, I do what I normally do. I go to the gym and run 10 miles, I order a pizza tonight, spray some lysol around, and go to bed at 8:00.

Then I will wake up tomorrow, brush the cobwebs off, and keep my glass half or more full as usual.

Your Group B Strep Questions — Answered!

July is Group B Strep Awareness Month.

I wrote last week about Group B Strep and GBS Awareness Month. Please read (and share) that post if you haven’t already.

I promised to answer YOUR questions about Group B Strep during July, right here on the blog. I was thrilled to get some great questions almost immediately, but I know there are more out there. Please let me know if you have questions — tweet me, FB me, email me. You ask, I’ll answer!

I was strep b positive with Cora, what does that mean for future babies? (you can answer in a post if you’d like) — Kristine (@KristineBrite) July 1, 2012

Because you were GBS+ does not mean that you will be GBS+ with any future pregnancy. Your status changes over time, as the bacteria “colonizes.” You will be tested between 35-37 weeks in your next pregnancy and antibiotic protocol will be followed according to that test.

CDC protocoldoes state that if you have a baby who contracts GBS, you should be treated in any subsequent pregnancy. GBSI advocates you and all pregnant women be screened for GBS bacteriuria (GBS in urine) in early pregnancy and treated if positive.

I’d like to know if its possible to pass gbs to the babe with a c-sec. I honestly thought it was only passed through the birth canal — Nicci (@Sticky41284) July 1, 2012

Yes. It is possible, but not as likely, to pass GBS to the baby with a c-section. In these cases, the womb becomes infected by one means or another. Bacteria could be introduced to the womb by internal exams, excessive monitoring or from what I call, random, natural means. It can happen and it does happen, but it’s rare, especially when the c-section is started before your water breaks or labor begins.

If you know you’re GBS+ and your doctor tells you that since you’re having a c-section you won’t need antibiotics, you CAN request them. Talk to your doctor about the risks v. benefits of having antibiotics before your incision is made.

Why don’t they test once you go in labor? Isn’t that the only way to be truly accurate? (and thank you, mama) — Sara (@SaraJOY) July 1, 2012

There are highly effective point of care or bedside rapid (less than 1 hour) tests available in a small number of hospitals. Yes, testing RIGHT THEN is obviously a way to get an updated, accurate reading. But unfortunately hospitals haven’t grabbed on to the rapid tests like we, the GBS community, wish they would.

The CDC and ACOG states that if a woman has not had the GBS test results given to her and a rapid test isn’t available, antibiotics will be administered based on the following risk situations:

    • baby born before 37 weeks
    • water broken for 18+ hours (12+ increases the risk)
    • you have a fever higher than 100.4°

@revsmf why don’t they automatically test all babies for group b strep postbirth? My daughter died at 2 days old, likely due this! — Sarah (@revsmf) July 1, 2012

I asked Dr. James McGregor, our best friend in the GBS fight, about this question. He said that, unfortunately, nobody has studied this. The community is interested in invasive disease and it just hasn’t gotten there yet. He hopes that one day this will be studied. One avenue of research for early onset (pre-signs and symptoms) include GBS antigen or infection biomarkers in the newborn’s urine or blood

This leads me to mention that the GBS bacteria moves quickly. If you feel like something is “off” in your baby, ask about it. Get him or her checked out. Know the symptoms (which are symptoms of other things as well).

Remember, your gut is rarely wrong.

Knowledge is power and your doctor is there to help you.

Do you still have questions? Ask and I shall answer!

Tweet me, ask on FB, ask in the comments, email me at janasthinkingplace@me.com!

 

SOC Sunday: Quick Observation in NYC

SOC Sunday: Quick Observation in NYC

I’ve fallen off the SOC Sunday bandwagon for a few weeks… glad to be back with it! Here go my 5 minutes of unedited, raw writing.

I just spent 3 days in New York City. My favorite city in the world. I took my niece and we beat the town to death. By “the town”, I mean my joints.

I’ve put on 20ish pounds this year. I wrote about that a few weeks ago and about my weight loss goals. I’m proud to say I was down 10 when I left for NYC on Tuesday.

It’s very obvious, though, when you’re walking in NYC that there are very few overweight people there. I commented in my head about it as I have many times before but it was even more apparent this time for some reason. Maybe because I’m fighting my own battle with weight. I don’t know.

The abundance of fresh foods in the delis and corner stores is great. People grab fruit bowls on the go and the beverage section in stores is largely waters and fruit juices instead of carbonated beverages. It’s in interesting observation.

And the walking. So much walking and going up and down stairs in subway stations. A trip to the corner is exercise. A trip down the subway stairs is exercise. We know that in one day we walked at least 5 miles of the city. There is no sedentary lifestyle in The City.

For three days, I semi-abandoned the diet plan I’m on. I tried to choose smart foods when I was just grabbing something, but there were things that I was going to eat no matter how many millions of calories they contain. Like this Nutella and Banana French Toast.

I came home two more pounds lighter. I’m hoping that it kick started my body again and when I hit my plan back hard on Monday I’ll be moving down the scale even more!

Reckon I should ask for some new pants for Christmas since mine are falling off now!

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This was my 5 minute Stream of Consciousness Sunday post. It’s five minutes of your time and a brain dump. Want to try it? Here are the rules…

  • Set a timer and write for 5 minutes only.
  • Write an intro to the post if you want but don’t edit the post. No proofreading or spellchecking. This is writing in the raw.
  • Publish it somewhere. Anywhere. The back door to your blog if you want. But make it accessible.
  • Add the Stream of Consciousness Sunday badge to your post (on Fadra’s sidebar)
  • Link up your post on her SOC Sunday post.
  • Visit your fellow bloggers and show some love.

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ps: If you want to know more about the plan I’m on, contact Bonnie at Simple Health and Nutrition at bonniefaske@att.net or via her Facebook Page.

My Tipping Point

My Tipping Point

My body has decided that at the ripe old age of 35.9 (so close to 36) it’s going to desert me. It’s going to just up and quit and start acting like it hates me. Right now I weigh more than I ever have. It’s not fun. And it’s not pretty. And I’m not happy in my own skin.

I know it’s not completely to blame for the extra 25lbs I’ve got on me or the fact that my only real exercise is walking Henry to school, but it IS to blame for the insane swelling and joint pain. And for the random rashes on my lower legs. Oh, and the fact that my hormones are way out of whack. Yeah, Body, I’m talking to you.

Body, I’m putting you in your place.

Monday I see my doctor to try to figure out why I’m swelling like a puffer fish. Something is going on in my body and I’m determined to get to the bottom of it. My feet and hands and elbows and knees shouldn’t be as swollen as they are. And no, they’re not just fat. I can feel the difference.

I’m tackling the fat, too. All those extra rolls around the middle — UGH.

Starting today, my sweet friend Bonnie at Simple Nutrition and Health is putting me back on track to take my Body back. I’ll be very open and honest, though. My real plan won’t start hard core until Monday. (Tomorrow is Henry’s birthday party and all weekend we have Halloween stuff, so I’m out for one last – in moderation – hoorah!)

Anyway, Bonnie’s whipped me up a meal plan based on my body, what it’s doing, what it’s NOT doing, how I feel and what my end goals are. I have a simple, but powerful, workout plan that I can do at home without spending a fortune on a gym.

Her approach is great. From her website:

We want to make eating right as simple as can be, so you can enjoy your life without it revolving around your diet.

Simple Nutrition and Health’s entire purpose is to give you the knowledge and tools to be the healthiest, happiest you can be. Whether it’s taking control of your health or providing the best nutrition possible for your family, we want to help you!

I saw the words “simple” and “happiest” and that’s what sold me.

She can do this all via Skype, email and chat and is a dream to work with. I’ll be updating y’all on my progress. Monday will be my kickoff day, complete with a picture and all that!

Stay tuned!

ps: Go follow Bonnie at Simple Nutrition and Health on Facebook! She gives out great recipes. Also, contact her if you’re interested in her services. Her rates are great and the support is even better!

Disclaimer: All opinions here are mine, however, Bonnie is providing me with her services in exchange for my posting my results and generally pimping her business out! 

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