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Is Anybody Out There?

17 May

Right. I have a blog. People used to read it. Then I disappeared. I don’t really have excuses, per se. Just a lot going on – the normal stuff, like kids and a house and all that business. Throw in the rental property Hubs and I just finished building plus trying to build my business, and I just had to step away from the computer. And as it turns out, when you work for yourself, and your ability to make money depends solely on the amount of time you work/effort you put in, well, let’s just say that you’re A LOT less likely to spend normal working hours messing around on Twitter or blogging. Ahem.

I spend all day writing and sitting in front of a computer and that doesn’t bode well for writing for fun. But oh, how I miss it. And I have a lot to say. I’ve been working hard on me, and there has been a lot of navel gazing up in here and if anyone is still out there reading, well, lucky for you, you get to hear about it.

So let’s just jump right in, shall we? Let’s talk about all the things I want to change about myself.

No, seriously. I’ve written before about coming to terms with the fact that no one is going to change my life for me. Which is, of course, blatantly obvious for normal people, but it was a lesson I had to learn, and continue to learn. But 2012 has, so far, been the year of working hard to be the person I want to be, and I’m kind of proud of myself.

It’s an odd feeling for me, to be proud of myself. I still find myself constantly putting  down my accomplishments and minimizing the work I’ve done. But I am a person who responds to lists, so even though my fingers are attempting to type all of the ways in which I’ve failed and all the things I have yet to change, I’m going to talk about the things I’ve been doing.

Health

When I started working from home, I swore I wasn’t going to sit on the couch and gain weight. But did you know that yoga pants are very forgiving? They are. And it wasn’t until I put jeans for the first time in … well, let’s just say it was a significant period of time … that I realized that those days of yoga pants were hiding the fact that I had gained a lot of weight. I did not feel good. So I started doing something about it:

– I got a partner. Since the end of February, my sister in law and I text each other EVERYTHING we eat. Everything. If I have three chips, I tell her. That accountability is an AMAZING deterrent for dipping my hand back into the bag of chips.

– I stopped drinking soda. I don’t even want to talk about it. I’m still mourning and it’s been 2 and a half months.

– I changed my diet. I cut out carbs and right now I’m on the 17 day diet, which has worked really well for me.

– I started running. I can now run a 10:50 mile, which I realize is laughable to some, but those three miles I run every other day make me feel like a rockstar.

– I started hot yoga. Let me tell you, Internet, I do not like to sweat. I would rather be cold than hot. I am not good at yoga. I thought for sure this would be a disaster. But I am completely, totally in love with hot yoga. The studio I go to uses a sequence very similar to Bikram yoga and it kicks my ass every time, but every time I leave there feeling like I can do ANYTHING. It also helps that I sweat out 1.5 – 2 pounds every time.

– I’ve lost 15 pounds. 15 more to go!

Work

I’ve got a few new, steady clients, which is awesome. I’m feeling more comfortable with putting myself out there and asking for what I’m worth. It’s the best job I’ve ever had and I feel so lucky that I had the support of my husband and the guts to do this.

Kids

I’ve tried really hard to be present with my kids. To play more, to plan fun activities, to try to have activities planned. I need to do better, but I have improved and I’m so glad I get to spend this extra time with them.

My Style

This is something I’ve been thinking about recently, as in the past 2 weeks. I am not a very stylish person. I know what I like when I see it, but putting it together is hard for me. If you read the internet at all, you’ve probably heard about Elizabeth’s “Wear Fewer T-Shirts” project. I cannot even express how much I looooove this idea. The aforementioned yoga pants are wonderfully comfortable, but they don’t really make me feel good.

Caleb’s BFF at daycare has one of those moms who always looks great. You know the ones – skinny, perfect hair, great outfit, etc. She just looks good. And she works full time and has two kids and she’s super nice and I basically have a mom crush. I don’t think I’m ever going to be like that, but I do want to try to look like I didn’t just roll out of bed. I don’t know how it’s going to go, but it’s going to start tomorrow when I take a hatchet to my closet. Goodwill is going to get a large delivery of Old Navy t-shirts that are never going to look right on me and clothes that I refuse to let go of because I’m convinced that someday it will work, even though it has never worked.

So that’s where I am. There are things I want to change, and I’m heading in the right direction. I’m proud of myself. And I promise this time, I really intend to write here again. I miss it.

What is going on with you, Internet?

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Bring It

8 Feb

10 days ago, Hubs and I started P90X. 10 days ago was the last time that my muscles didn’t ache. 10 days ago was the last time I didn’t have visions of Tony Horton’s muscles dancing in my head. 10 days ago was the last time I laid on my couch after the kids went to sleep and got lost in the goodies stored on my DVR.  After gobs of sweat, multiple incidents of near-vomiting, and many, many cuss words directed at the direction of my television, I’m still doing it. I’ve done Ab Ripper X (and yes, it is as nasty as it sounds) four times. I have jumped, lifted, pull-upped (not a word), push-upped (still not a word), done YogaX twice (FYI, yoga is NOT PEACEFUL), lunged, and stretched, everyday, for at least an hour a day for 10 days (Scratch that. I had one measly day off.) 
 
I know 10 days isn’t a long time for a fitness program. I know I’m not very far into it and there is plenty of time left in this 90 day program for me to give up. But for me, sticking with something as hard and mean and nasty as P90X for 10 days is huge. I am notorious for starting a diet or fitness routine and giving up after about day 3. Why is P90X different? I’m not sure. But I can tell you one thing. I.LOVE.IT. I look forward to our workouts. And after we’re done and I’m a hot, sweaty, painful mess, chugging my Gatorade Recovery drink, fighting my body’s desire to collapse, I feel great. I am not going to quit this. Not only do I want one of those kick-ass bodies the people on the DVDs have, but I want to feel good. Accomplished. I want to know that I pushed myself to do something difficult and actually followed through. I’m not so good at follow through.
 
Back in September and October, I was running almost everyday. Only for a half hour, but still. It was something. At the end of those days, when the laundry was still piled up and unfinished, the dishes overflowed the sink, and I’d had a horrible, unproductive day at work, I was okay with everything that was left undone. I had at least accomplished something. And I lost 10 pounds and felt awesome. But then it got cold and the holidays came and 4 gained pounds and gigantic feelings of inadequacy later, I was feeling pretty crummy, not only about my health, but I was disappointed that yet again, there was something I wanted but didn’t go after.
 
It’s truly been the story of my life. I don’t know if it comes from a lack of self-confidence or because being driven isn’t a natural part of my personality, but I’m just not good at believing in myself enough to do things that might be hard or that I might fail at. But something I’ve learned since I started on the depression medicine is that in order for me to continue to make improvements and feel good about myself, I have to challenge myself. My life is not going to become what I want it to be simply by wishing and hoping for it to change. I will only be happy with myself when I know that I have worked my butt off to change the things I’m unhappy with instead of just belly-aching about it.
 
This is all a very long, very drawn-out way for me to say that I’m trying to make some big changes in my life. In reality, I already have. I’ve gotten healthy mentally. My marriage is better than ever, my kids are unbelievably wonderful, and I am finally in a place to appreciate my family the way they deserve to be appreciated. P90X is my road to becoming healthy physically. I will stick with it. I will reach my fitness goals.
 
My next step is a bit more complicated, but it is so very important.
 
As I’ve mentioned before, I’m not happy with my job. I could go on for paragraphs and paragraphs about all the things that are wrong with it and why I hate it and why it sucks the life out of me. But none of it really matters. All that really matters is that it doesn’t make me happy. It doesn’t provide me with any kind of personal fulfillment and doesn’t pay me enough to compensate for the crap I put up with. I firmly believe that a job has to provide one of those things to be worth it and mine provides neither. It makes me crabby and stressed and me being unhappy for 45 hours a week isn’t good for me or my family.
 
So I’m making a change. It’s not going to be immediate. It’s going to be hard. It’s going to take time, effort, and I might fail. But with the support of my amazing husband, who has pretty much given me carte blanche to find something that makes me happy, and the help of a friend, who is amazing and who has already, just today, given me invaluable information, I think I can pull it off.  I’m excited. And hopeful. And a little scared. But mostly excited. Wish me luck!