Sunday, January 22, 2012

Like this blog? Then please come follow me at Half The Girl. I will never delete this blog as I always want access to the journal of my journey from the very beginning, but all updates on my progress, as well as recipes and other fun stuff, can be found on the new blog. Hope to see you all there!

Sunday, January 8, 2012

An Open Letter to....Me.

Hey there kiddo! How's it going? I just wanted to check in with you before we get too far into 2012. If there is one theme for this year I really want you to remember and grab hold of, it's that this is the year you make yourself a priority. I mean TRULY make yourself a priority. You have your own goals and dreams that are important to you. You know you've worked hard at them (most of the time), but you so quickly sacrifice your needs and wants to help others. Don't get me wrong, helping others is who you are, it's part of what defines you. But you all too often let it take priority. And all too often you see that when it's time for you to look for some support it's not always easy to find. You've always been something of a rock for others, so maybe they just don't see you as needing from others. Regardless, you have to rely on yourself. So rather than be disappointed in the shortcomings of others, take care of your needs and you know they'll be met, right? I'm really proud of you for signing up for that new exercise group without worrying about how it would effect your availability. I know you believe in yourself, kiddo, so I know you're going to get to your goal. I would love for that to happen this year, but just remember this is about the journey, not about the destination. You'll get there right exactly at the right time. The longer it takes, the more I believe you are making all these changes truly for life. Give yourself a little grace once in a while, will ya? You are a great person. You're a great friend to many people. You have a big heart. Sometimes having a heart that big makes it an easy target, but you have to stop thinking everything is your fault. It never was when you were a kid, you just made an easy target then, too. Really, the bottom line is it's okay to love yourself. It's okay to be exactly who you are. Continue to expect a lot from yourself because you DO have the capacity to deliver. Just take things one day at a time, moment by moment.

Sunday, January 1, 2012

Happy New Year!

2011 is history. Unchangeable. Done. Over. Finito. 2012 is here, and with it a chance for change, growth and, well, kicking ass. It's my year, and I'm living this one for ME. I've been thinking quite a lot about what living for me should look like. It's a work in progress, but this is my personal prescription for 2012. --First and foremost: be more mindful, more present. This one is going to be a big challenge for a died in the wool over-thinker. "Let it come. Let it Be. Let it Go." This is SO not my nature. But I truly feel learning to be more mindful will make me a happier person. --Push Back. This is a direct instruction from my therapist. Push. Back. Stop taking it from the people in your life without pushing it back. Believe it or not, this is going to take practice in mindfulness. Because generally I push it down instead of out, and it festers. No more. That's a spirit killer right there. --Embrace who I am. Yeah, again, this is a terrible area for me. But I want to own who I am. Flaws and all. And be proud of it. And if I'm an inspiration along the way, I'm just going to go with it! --Balance. I need balance in a lot of areas. Mainly my over-training tendencies. And beating myself up when I don't work out too much. And feeling like I owe everybody an explanation. --Change. Simply summed up, some things need to change. I need a new perspective, new attitude, new habits. 2012 is the year to make it happen. (At least until the world ends!)

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Goodbye, 2011. Hello the rest of my life.

Well, 2011 is sure not the year I had hoped or imagined it would be. Last year at this time I thought 2011 was going to be a great year for me. I was going to have the opportunity to work as a personal trainer! I had big ideas to start a blog that would help reach and inspire people. Certainly I was going to be much closer to my weight loss goal. But none of those things happened. 2011 denied my dream to work as a trainer (at least for the foreseeable future). That led to my changing gyms which resulted in losing a huge chunk of my support system. One of my oldest friends (and at that time my roommate) went off the deep end and disappeared. It was almost a week before we were relieved to find out he wasn't dead. That was a week I hope I never come close to reliving again. Ever. I lost three dear friends. I got two of them back. The third is a lost cause, which is heartbreaking. My mother has been struggling with some things and that's been hard to watch. And I am no closer to my goal weight than I was a year ago. That's the reader's digest version of my year. There were some things to be proud of, to be sure. I attempted my first 5k. I finished the Warrior Dash. I pushed myself out of my comfort zone physically over and over this year. And while I'm not any closer to my goal weight, I'm not any farther, either. And after this year, that is saying A LOT. I need to take a little more credit for that, really. So as 2011 comes to an end, I am looking forward, not looking back. As much as I would love to change almost everything about this year, I can't. All I can do is reframe, refocus and redefine my dreams. Ever onward.

Saturday, November 19, 2011

I came. I saw. I was a warrior!

I'm too tired to write much (and there's an ice pack waiting for my knee... But here's some fun proof that I did it and got nice and dirty! It was a blast! And off all the obstacles, the only one I couldn't conquer was purely because of a mental thing...I tackled everything else! Thanks to Karen for suggesting (making?) this!

Friday, November 18, 2011

Failure isn't just not an option, it's not even a possibility!

It's finally here! Tomorrow at 10:00am I'll take off on the Warrior Dash. A three mile obstacle course. Of course I really want to do well and dominate at every obstacle. Chances are pretty good that I won't. But no matter what happens, I can't fail. As long as I'm pushing myself and giving it all the determination I have, I just can't fail. Because I showed up. Because I no longer will be satisfied with assuming I can't do things or I should wait to try. Because I have the heart and soul to aspire for so much more. I have the desire to push myself beyond what's comfortable and safe. It's easy to do that when you know you just can't fail. Just because you showed up.

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Allowing 5 minutes for self doubt, then onward!

A week from right now it will be all over. The Warrior Dash. I've been so pumped for this, I can't believe it's six short days away! Except for the day I signed up, today was the first day I doubted myself. I looked at the course and they've added some obstacles that will definitely be challenging. For a brief moment I felt a little panic, and thought maybe this was a bad idea. But I was able to shut that voice up pretty quickly. I am not running this race for time, style or finesse. I'm running this race for sheer fun and to see what I CAN do, not get hung up on what I can't. If I can't complete an obstacle, oh well! It's only going to eliminate me from collecting a first place prize. That wasn't going to happen regardless! I am making this promise to myself right now: You get five minutes of self-doubt on race morning. And then it's balls out, go hard, push myself harder than I think is possible. I will leave NOTHING at the start line. Nothing. It's about time I start realizing challenges are about facing them head on and not judging yourself on your performance.

Sunday, November 6, 2011

This is who I am!

I feel a strange sense of peace and balance. It might even be happiness and contentment. I can't even explain exactly why. Certainly finding an amazing therapist has been a huge part of it. And actually embracing what he says is certainly helpful! I don't have all the things in my life lined up perfectly that I'd like to have, but I'm happy, right now. I believe in myself. I really am starting to feel like I am becoming the person I was supposed to be all along. I don't know how to elaborate on that really. So I won't. This is who I am. And I love it!

Sunday, October 23, 2011

October 23 is the start of a new phase!

The phase is High Gear. Your challenge, should you accept it, is to park your bad attitude, your excuses, your "poor me", your self-doubt and wavering confidence at the curb. Right next to the trash cans so the trash guys will pick them up and haul them off. No room for any of that in this phase. High Gear is about pushing past all of that. I CAN do it. And here are my specific goals. I will: --Be proud of every effort I make, every day. I will tell myself every day that I'm awesome. And that my awesomeness doesn't come at the expense of anybody else. We can all be awesome. --live today for today, and make the most of it. I will wake up every day ready to take on the world with vigor AND a smile. I won't worry about tomorrow. I will not ponder yesterday unless I can learn from it. --take on challenges. --stop thinking people doubt me. If they do, let em. Either way, I care about what I think of my abilities. --stop putting myself down. That's going to be a hard habit to break, but I will do my best. (On my honor, I will try --- yeah, I was a Girl Scout!) --not waste a single day. I will live every day as a gift and treat it with the respect it deserves. --not hold a place of anger in my heart for people who hurt me. I don't have room for those people or that poison in my heart. I need the room to expand my cardiovascular capacity anyway. :) --not assume I can't do something until I've tried and proven I can't. And even then I will just use that as a measure from which to improve. --KICK SOME ASS! Anybody with me?

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Out with the old, in with the new...

Or something like that. The last few weeks have been a good time for me to examine a lot of things, including my goals, etc. I'm not saying it's not still ultimately a goal to be an employed personal trainer some day, but I think right now that's just not what I'm supposed to be focusing on. I never did much with the site, for a number of reasons. So I'm going to put that on ice for now. Instead, I'm going to focus on a more personal version of the basic concept. Ultimately my passion is to help people see that they can achieve whatever they want to, if they are willing to work hard enough and believe in themselves. I think a more personal approach may be a better way, but not as personal as this blog is---my personal yet very public diary! So I'm starting a blog at Very much a work in it's infancy at the moment, but the good news is that I'm excited again! I forgot what that felt like! It's pretty awesome!

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Do you believe you deserve to be happy, thin and healthy?

I had that question posed to me within the first 10 minutes or so of my first counseling session. I had to answer honestly (or what would be the point, right?) I told him up until the last couple of weeks, I was convinced I must not deserve to be happy. I could manage getting thin and healthy, but it just seemed like happy wasn't going to happen. And I was starting to accept it. Good thing I finally had a hard epiphany that it was a complete load of crap. I deserve happiness just as much as you do. We all do. And it's all up to me. Well, not your happiness. :) And it may sound like I'm repeating myself, and I probably am, but if we don't believe we have the inalienable right to be happy, then we're going to look for ways to find unhappiness. I'm too old to for that. I WANT to be happy. After deciding that, I've had a couple of really great weeks in my little world. ANd at the scale. Go figure!!

Friday, October 7, 2011

Pick Me! Pick Me!!

Help a girl out, will ya!? My recipe is one of the five finalists picked for a little contest over on the Gold's Gym Facebook page. The winner will be decided by the most "likes". Please go over and "like" my recipe for dirty quinoa!
Ginny's Dirty Quinoa

Sunday, October 2, 2011

47 Days until.....

The Warrior Dash!
I can't wait! I made a comment on Facebook that one day I'd like to do something like the Tough Mudder. Not nearly ready for that (for starters, it's a ten mile course!) My former trainer saw that and suggested we do the Warrior Dash. At first I thought I should wait---I surely wasn't capable of that. But the more I thought about it, the more I thought, why not? I can run 5k now. The obstacles don't look completely undoable for me. And bottom line, I figured, was it's a race where you're playing in the mud, so shouldn't I just have fun with it and try the best I can? Who cares if I can't do it fast or gracefully! So I went straight home and signed up. And you know what? I was excited about something for the first time in months and months and months. And months. I was smiling! The first thing to pull me out of this prolonged funk was having a goal, something to challenge myself with. And I've thrown myself into it head first. Well, really feet first. :)
This, boys and girls, is what crazy Aunt Ginny can't wait to do:

Friday, September 30, 2011

I'm standing in my own way. Again. I hate it when that happens.

I had really thought my next blog would be about the exciting thing I'm doing in exactly 49 days. But, that'll have to wait. (Sorry for the tease! Promise I'll talk about that soon.) In the meantime, you should probably go get a snack and get comfortable. It's time for me to come clean.

I've made no progress so far this year at the scale to speak of.  I've undoubtedly toned up and increased my overall fitness, but the weight loss stalled.  And this time it's not the dreaded plateau. It's me. I've been standing in my way.  I've been subtly sabotaging myself.  Not by sneaking in pints of Ben and Jerry's or midnight trips to the McDonald's drive-thru. No, by tearing my whatever smidgen of self-esteem and sense of self-worth I'd managed to claim for myself into hundred's of little pieces and tossing them into the wind.  Okay, perhaps that imagery is not very subtle.  But that's pretty much what I did.  I've blamed it all on the disappointments and 'emotional' upheavals that lined up like waves stacked on the horizon. Those events, etc have been quite real and quite distressing. But I let them determine how I felt about MYSELF. Not the events or relationships. MYSELF.

One of my biggest issues is that I've always looked for validation from external sources. I have not been able to sustain any kind of validation that comes from myself, to myself.  And to make it even worse, I yearn for external validation, but then promptly dismiss it when it comes along.  The bottom line, that I finally need to face head-on, is that my self-esteem has been broken for SO long I am really incapable of fixing it on my own.  And I'll be honest, I sometimes worry that it's so screwed up it's beyond fixing.  But I have to try.
I have to. I have proven to myself that I'm not afraid of hard work or a challenge. I expect this process to be both.  I have fleetingly considered getting back into therapy over the last couple of years, but I didn't. I stood in my own way. And I've spent a good portion of the last couple of years living so far below my potential level of happiness.  I don't think I wanted to see that I was doing it to myself. But it's time to deal with all of the "it's". The it's I know and the it's I don't.    And oddly (or not), as soon as I started the process to find a compatible therapist and schedule the appointment, I felt emotionally better than I have in months and months.

Everybody has their kryptonite. I'm just tired of mine

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Sometimes I forget....

Sometimes I forget I'm not the same person I was five years ago. Ten years ago. Or more accurately, I forget that I don't have to be. This year has been rough. This week almost did me in. I let the actions of one person send me running back to the old me. It started with a jar of Nutella and a spoon. A few days later that turned into Xanax and tequila. And a lot of self pity. I didn't want to feel anything. Not the frustration of a year that's been one disappointment or challenge after another. Not the self-loathing for not having accomplished anything this year. Not the constant reminder from the "experts" that I am, as of yet, not a success. Not the anger and hurt over repeatedly being treated so hurtfully and disrespectuflly by somebody I held in high regard. And while I'd love to trade in any one of those things and not HAVE to feel any of it, it's what I have. It is what it is. So, I can go back to the old me. Or not. I can turn all of this into drive and passion to not let anything, anyone, any organization take away from me what I've worked so, so hard for. I'm better than that. My sister in law reminded me of something. "Courage cries, too". I can be sad, and I can be hurt, but I can still be courageous. I can still push on for the things and the people that mean the most to me. And cry if I have to. So she may have taken a few days off, but the badass will be back at 5am tomorrow morning. Do not get in her way.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Stronger Than....

There's a major national gym that has an ad campaign based on a pretty simple series of statements. (Okay, it's Gold's Gym, which happens to be my new home base for working out.) You may have seen it on billboards, or my t-shirts.

Stronger than yesterday
Stronger than excuses
Stronger than ordinary

How much do I love that? A ton! Why? Because I can personally identify strongly with every one of those statements.

Stronger than ordinary? You better believe it. I'm not talking about brute strength. I'm talking about mental strength. Yes, I will admit (and it's pretty obvious by now, isn't it?) that I have some mental obstacles. But what makes me stronger than ordinary? I won't just give up because of them. It reminds of me something my friend said about his daughter a couple of days ago. She's just over one. He was laughing about how if something was in her way, she just found a way to climb over it. It didn't occur to her to stop the direction she was going because something was in between where she was and where she wanted to be. (I hope you never lose that drive, MollyMad!) I'm not giving up or giving in just because of an obstacle or two. Or five. Maybe I can't go straight over or through the obstacle. Maybe I have to go around. Or maybe I need a push from below. And it may not be right away that I figure out how to deal with the obstacle. But I will. And as far as sticking with losing weight and becoming healthy? You better believe that makes me stronger than ordinary.

Stronger than excuses? Not on my watch. From the very beginning I made a deal with myself--no BS excuses. It's too easy to find excuses. I figured out what my "go-to" excuses were pretty early on and figured out how to eliminate them from having an opportunity to be a problem, at least for the most part. And I think excuses tend to give the power of ownership of our choices away. Actually my difficulty these days is giving myself grace to skip a workout once in a while!

Stronger than yesterday? Yes. Stronger than yesterday, last week, last year, ten years ago. But not as strong as tomorrow. Every day is a chance to be stronger. Every challenge is a chance to learn about myself, how resilient I am, how much I'm willing to work for what I want. I'm up for the task.

So thanks, Gold's. Not just for giving me a new comfort zone for my workouts, but for a brilliant ad campaign. I approve!

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Shaking the dust off the blog.

So far, 2011 has, in a word, sucked. Really sucked. I had some high hopes going into this year, but things didn't work out the way I'd hoped. And then the hits just kept on coming. For the last few weeks I've been in a pretty terrible funk. 2011 was shaping up to be the year the broke me. But I just looked at the calendar. It's not over. I have a quarter of the year left to feel like my life hasn't turned out to be a huge waste of space. And yeah, that's pretty much how I've been feeling.

As far as the weight loss has gone this year, it's been slow. I still work out ALL the time and I do the best I can with the food choices. I haven't by any stretch stopped my efforts, despite my absence from my blog. I've just simply felt like I have nothing to say. At least nothing that's worth anybody's attention.

In retrospect, I think I went into 2011 giving myself FAR too much credit for accomplishments I've made. But, the universe has a way of taking care of that. I can't tell you how many times my legs have been figuratively knocked out from under me in the past 9 months. So I'm taking my time getting back up. Any grasp I ever had at self esteem or (heaven forbid) confidence has always been tenuous and fragile. So I'm going to get back up slowly and quietly. But I am getting back up.


Friday, April 29, 2011

My buns are ready...mostly...

In less than 48 hours I will have finished my first attempt to jog a 5K. As long as my piriformis muscle cooperates, I think I can do it. But, the flare up of the piriformis from hell a couple of weeks ago has forced me to accept that I may not be able to run the whole thing. More importantly, that if I can't, it's NOT a failure. Even if I can't for reasons not associated with pain. The failure would be letting my anxiety about it all getting the best of me and refusing to try. And unless I wake up with an indication from my back suggesting I shouldn't, I WILL TRY.

I don't know if it's true or not, but I think my unchecked anxiety feeds into the incredible pressure I put on myself for everything. Or at least it fuels my tendency to view things from the 'worst case' perspective. But, I've come to grips with that, too, and it's no longer going to be unchecked anxiety.

As much as I wish many of the events of this year could have gone drastically differently, I'm learning. From all of them.

I'm ready to make the second half of 2011 my time to shine!

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Asking for, really, I'm asking.

It's been a bit of a year already. I'm still trudging through. But I feel a little lost in the desert. I want to see the forest, but all I see are trees. Great big trees.
I don't feel like I have much to be proud of. I really had pinned my hopes on the pending 5k, but my back decided to flare up, so it's questionable if I'll even get to try.

I'm putting myself "out there" as a certified personal trainer by working with Hershey's Moderation Nation (also the same day as the 5k!) But I just feel a little down about things. Okay, a lot down. I'm trying to muddle through it, work on the website, get back in the game despite feeling inept at all of it.

And, I have gained about six pounds. That's just unacceptable to me. I need help.
I don't know exactly what I'm asking for, though. Just help.

Monday, March 21, 2011

Oh yeah, I have a blog!

I got an email alert that I had a new comment, from a new follower. For a moment I thought, 'oh yeah, I have a blog'. I really didn't forget.

The truth is, emotionally I had a setback. All because the training gig didn't work out. And, as it turns out, it really had nothing to do with me. It had everything to do with the business practices of a few people. I'll do my best to keep that to myself. But I will say that although it wasn't about me, the way they handled it was infuriating. But, as it turns out, that's how they handle everything. And sadly, the gym that I cared so much about and wanted so much to "give back" to other members, is a shell of what it once was. It's all very sad to me.

At any rate, in my mind, becoming a working personal trainer was what would make me "legit". It's what would validate my success. At least to me. So when it didn't happen, I really struggled (even more than usual) to think of myself as a success. So I have don't nothing with my website. I've just been trudging along.

The good news is, I'm to the point where I can call my 'BS' on myself. I've lost 177lbs. I am not going to allow one disappointment to make me feel like I have nothing to say or share.

I'm not fully back to "take on the world" status, but I'm getting there. One step at a time. I'm content to believe that everything happens how it's supposed to, and it the time it's supposed to happen. For whatever reason, I'm not supposed to be a trainer right now. And I'm okay with that.

I did take another step out of the comfort zone by signing up for a 5k. I've done them before, but walking. This time, I hope to run the whole thing. Well, run slowly, but run. Unfortunately, I've got a lot riding on this in terms of my mental well being, but I'm pretty sure that I can do it physically. It's my tendency to cave in on myself mentally that will be the huge obstacle.

Doing it "alone" is terrifying. But I've found a way to bring some of my biggest supporters along with music. Maybe I should make my own t-shirt and have some of them sign it?

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

The Fortune Cookie That Keeps on Giving....

A few posts ago I mentioned a fortune cookie fortune I received. At the time it really was perfect. So I stuck it in the back of my iPhone case and every once in a while I look at it.
It said: You don't need to know where you're going to know you're headed in the right direction.

That is so true for me. It's been an interesting week. A trying week. And now, more than ever, I believe two things to be true.
1) You don't need to know where you're going to know you're headed in the right direction.
2) Everything happens exactly as it's supposed to.

This could be a long blog. Go grab a drink.

Okay, long story short. Well, part of it. Despite what I was told by the owner of the gym where I am a member and where I auditioned/interviewed to work as a trainer, which was that I'd start in January, I'm not starting. And I may never start. Why? I have no idea. The only answer I can get from anybody is at some point in the future I can re-audition. Awesome.

I took this hard. VERY hard. Why? I think there are many reasons. As somebody who has a hard time giving herself any credit for accomplishing anything, actually working as a trainer was going to be how I really believed I had accomplished something.

Another reason is that this whole process took a lot of me pushing through everything I have ever believed about myself. It was not an easy thing to do. As a result, I put in a lot of myself emotionally. Probably 90% of myself. To feel like it was all working out, only to have the rug pulled out from under me was tough.

So I've spent much of the last week crying, or trying not to start crying, moping around, berating myself, wondering what this was all for. Was this some sick joke?

I pulled the case off my iphone a couple of days ago and looked at that fortune. It was shouting at me. YOU DO NOT HAVE TO KNOW WHERE YOU'RE GOING TO KNOW YOU'RE HEADED IN THE RIGHT DIRECTION.

I started to think about the possibilities of training other places. That concept is unnerving. And while I still truly believe a snowball has a better chance in hell than I have of getting a training position at my current weight, the bigger issue is my imprisonment in my comfort zone. After everything that's happened with the gym, forcing me to consider other options, I really started to own up to the fact that, while I get a perfectly good workout at my current gym, it IS my comfort zone. And maybe, just maybe, part of this whole fiasco with the training position there has helped open my eyes to the idea that it's time to venture out of the comfort zone. If I don't, I'm at a huge risk of stagnating. And I don't want to do that.

One of my friends commented recently on my tendency to "cave in on myself". Another friend asked me to not use this disappointment as an opportunity to put my walls back up. They are both right. Part of my comfort zone is to cave in on myself, largely by lots and lots of negative things I say to and about myself. It's easier for me (in a twisted logic) to run myself into the ground mentally first, before anybody else can do it, because when they do, it'll hurt less. And throwing up walls is definitely an uncomfortable comfort zone. People can't hurt you when you shut them out.

But I have worked so hard to try and change those things. And I don't want to go back to the completely caved in person I used to be. Or the girl whose walls were really much more like a nuclear bomb shelter. I'm going to fight myself to not do that again.

Tonight I took a class at a new MMA fitness center. I've always wanted to MMA. kick boxing, that kind of thing. But it was just one more thing I figured I would do "eventually". When I was thinner. Or fitter. Or my hair was a different color.
But I took the free class. And then signed up for a membership. Why wait? It will help me become thinner and fitter. Not a whole lot of help with changing my hair color, though. I'm taking away from this experience several things. One of those is to let this adversity be an opportunity to challenge myself. So I did.

So as disappointed as I still am, I believe everything happens exactly the way it's supposed to, as long as I take something away from my experiences, even the bad ones, that will help me become a better person.

Saturday, December 18, 2010

A slow realiztion....with no clear solution.

If you've never been afflicted with low self-esteem and all that comes with it and can't relate to those of us who have, you should probably stop reading now. And should you chose to keep reading, I can assure you the last thing I need to hear as the solution is "just don't think like that." Because trust me, it's not so easy.

Let me back up a half-step. I've been working really hard on the self-esteem thing. It's very much a three steps forward, two steps back process for me. Lately, though, it's more like three steps back. No, take two more. Maybe another one. Mostly because I have this tiny little problem of basing my sense of worth on the words and actions of others. Oh, but not the positive words and actions. I can dismiss those with lightning speed.

As a result, I have been searching for validation lately that never seems to come. Even though plenty of friends try to validate me, it doesn't matter. (My brain tells me that of course they'd say what they think I want to hear, so it doesn't really matter when they say it."

The problem is that I cannot validate myself. (Insert "duh" here, should it be an obvious thing to you.) I realize now that is, in fact, the problem. And a problem for which I have no immediate solution. I don't know how to convince myself.

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Hello,'s been too long.

I gotta admit, one of the biggest irritations for me is when people tell say 'don't feel that way'. I really want to reply with "Screw you. I AM entitled to feel however I damn well please, whether or not it's rational, reasonable or acceptable."

I've had a mixed bag of a week. On the bright side, my running is coming along, at least on the treadmill. And that doesn't really count. Have some work to do to get ready for the Christmas Mile with my nephews. (Oh, the back story. So yeah, since I've been fat pretty much forever, I've never run for any length of time. So I thought I'd give it a try. Then my back went out. Now my back is on the mend and I've been trying this running thing. I want to run my first full mile, without stopping, with my nephews Eric and Nick when I go home for Christmas. Granted, a mile is no big deal. Well, let me rephrase. To everybody else it's no big deal. To me, it's a big deal. I'm still a pretty big girl, after all.)

The only other highlight of the week was attending the grand opening of a retail space for my BFF Jessica's business. It's her dream. Watching her dream happen has been very much my privilege. If you want the best chocolately goodness to exist in reality, check out

The rest of my week? My own dream seems to be slipping away. Long story short, I am now completely unable to get any confirmation about starting as a part time trainer at my gym in January as previously discussed with the owner. I'm not being told it's changed. I'm being told NOTHING. And I have a very bad feeling about that. And before you tell me that's not the only gym in town, let me just say, I know that. I'm not stupid. I also know that at present (present being an obese middle aged woman), a snowball would indeed have a better chance in Hell. Let's just all be real and on the same page with that. Please.

So it makes me question myself, my new website, my whole purpose. As my friend Jessica says, I tend to cave in on myself. Yeah, that's true. I do that, and then I bounce back. But right now, I'm worn down. I really feel like I have little emotional energy. Basically I have NO emotional energy. I don't know how to find the recharge. And tomorrow, for reasons of optimism I don't fully understand, I'm going to have a friend help me film an 'about me' video blog for the new website. And the one thing I need is energy.

I just feel lost, alone and adrift.

Oh but hey...fruit is now free.

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Voice from the fortune cookie....

Last Sunday I had dinner with my mother at Pei Wei. Of course you have to read your fortune, even if you don't eat the cookie! Boy did that fortune come at the right time.
"You don't have to know where you're going to be headed in the right direction."

That may sound like a generic fortune, but in the time that the idea of a website/facebook presence, etc has been brewing in my head, I've been plagued by thoughts of how to do it, what exactly to do, where do I start, etc. I've decided those thoughts are the result of three main things. 1)I'm not a techie. At all. I have lots of ideas, and limited knowledge on how to make them real. Or virtual. :)

2) I'm a planner. It's a good and bad trait to have. I like to know what's going to happen and when. I don't fly by the seat of my pants very well. So the thought of going into this endeavor with sort of 'obtuse' ideas is a little unnerving for me.

3) Doing this confirms the huge changes in my life, in a public way, however big or small the audience. The idea of that brings that girl who controlled me (you know, the girl who felt worthless, hopeless and helpless) screaming from the recesses of my brain, challenging who I think I am that I have any business with this kind of thing.

Although excited with the possibilities, I spent week of overwhelming doubt about my abilities, direction and purpose. To the point where I felt a little bit paralyzed. On Friday a book fell into my hands that literally laid out a road map for exactly what I'd like to do. I did not buy this book. I wasn't searching for this book. Somebody else determined I should have this book, and strangely I don't even think they realize exactly how perfectly it fits my plan. Chalk that one up to fate. And smart friends. Then came Sunday's fortune. "You don't have to know where you're going to be headed in the right direction."

To me, that said "Just start. It will fall into place. Don't stay still. Just start the momentum."

As scary as that is, I can look back at when I start Weight Watchers. I had absolutely NO CLUE that Saturday that I would end up here: a certified personal trainer, a person who enjoys pushing herself physically, a person who has changed her very core beliefs about herself. I just thought I'd try to lose some weight! But here I am!

And here I go. One step at a time!

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Any Body Can. Anybody can.

My simple A B C's of fitness?
And so can anybody. Any body and anybody, no matter where we are starting from, or how far we have to go, can do it. But sometimes it's scary and sometimes we think we're too (insert your adjective here) to do it. For me it was thinking I was too fat. For some people it's too old. Too busy.

I pushed myself out of that comfort zone with help, a lot of help, from several people. If I can pay that forward to one other person, I'll be happy as a clam. To that end, it looks like I'll start as an actual personal trainer in January. I'm still a little floored by all of this! I told a friend today that this is my passion. (To which I was told I my passion makes me obligated by The Universe to share it and guide others!) I don't see it as an obligation at all!! Even though I sometimes get overwhelmed with self doubt, I really think I have A LOT to offer to people who are looking for that help and encouragement.

So, I would also like to announce that I have purchased a domain. Don't go there now because nothing is there. I'm still trying to figure the content and technical stuff out. If I decide to have a training business outside a gym setting, it will be called Any Body Can Fitness. So that's my website!

In the meantime, you can look for me on Facebook. Just search for Any Body Can Fitness!

Monday, November 8, 2010

What do they want me to say?

If I met somebody for the first time, somebody who knew absolutely nothing about me, and they griped about weight loss/exercise/dieting I'd probably smile, nod my head and not offer up much of a response.

But when I hear this kind of thing, more than once, from people who know me, who know I've lost probably more than they weigh, what do they REALLY want from me?

Do they just want to vent about it? Because I'm not sure I'm the person to do that with. Do they really think I'm going to put my arm around them and say "yeah, it's terrible that you're unhappy with your weight right now. I'm sure all those unhealthy choices have nothing to do with it!"

Do they want me to confirm that their excuses are perfectly valid? I'm not sure I'm the person for that, either. I would like to think I'm living proof that if you WANT to do something, you can do it. Excuses, as I like to say, are just opportunities to be creative. Love to help find solutions. Not so in love with listening to the excuses and nodding my head.

Really, want do they want? Because I have a strict rule about not offering unsolicited advice. But when people bring this stuff up, to ME, what are they expecting I'm going to say?

I honestly get confused by this. I tend to believe that it's a veiled attempt to ask for help without really asking for it. I don't know what to do.

Saturday, November 6, 2010

In the end, you're still you...

I'll admit dander is up. So I'm going to vent.

Somebody, anybody, please tell me how tearing down another person can make you truly, TRULY feel better about yourself? If you can convince me that it's possible, then I'll shut up. Because I don't think it is.

If you are so insecure or unhappy with yourself that you deflect the attention to your shortcomings by a) making another person feel badly about themselves or b) point out and hound them for what truly may be their own 'flaws', you've succeeded in only one thing. Tearing somebody down. You have done NOTHING to accept and/or address the things about yourself that make you unhappy. Period. Convince me otherwise. Please. I don't think you can.

So to make this topic relevant to this blog, let me tell you why I'm so ticked off. If you read this and feel any self-conviction, I'm only half apologizing for that. Actually, I'm not apologizing at all. Suck it up.

There is a person I know from the gym. Truly what you would call a fitness badass. I aspire to be in the kind of shape she is in. I don't aspire to feel like that entitles me to judge what other people do. Case in point: posting on Facebook about how horrible it was for people to use the elevator when it was "only" two flights of stairs. Which of course was followed up with a comment by somebody else referring to these people as fatties.

First off, she didn't say whether they were thin or not. The assumption was that they were fat. What difference does it make? Well, the assumption by the original poster AND the follow up poster were that the choice to take the elevator was solely a product of laziness. (And all lazy people are fat and all fat people are lazy. Right? Yes, my tongue is planted firmly in my cheek. OF COURSE NOT.)

Maybe the person taking the elevator just had knee surgery. Maybe they have a heart condition. Maybe they were just tired and take the stairs every other time. Maybe...wait. WHO CARES? What does it do for them to belittle others? It does not make them ANY MORE FIT. It does not do a DAMN THING to further their pursuit of the perfect body.

Runners who point out that other people were "just walking" (and yes, that's a quote) will not be able to run faster or longer if those who are "just walking" sit in a recliner or run a marathon in record time.

The bottom line is, you are still who you are, no matter what. And if you're not happy with it, tearing anybody else down won't fix it.

And taking this in a slightly different direction, comments like that make me cringe because I know from FIRST-HAND, PERSONAL EXPERIENCE what it's like to feel like if you walk into a gym, or go anywhere there are people working out who don't know what it's like to be fat walking into to a gym and thinking they are judging you. So what happens? You don't go. You feel worse about yourself, and the cycle continues.

Really, I should thank her. I want her to know that comments like that just fuel my fire. My fire to make people feel empowered to do what they never thought they could do. "Just walking" is pretty damn impressive for some of us.

Saturday, October 30, 2010

My Split Personality

Some days I think I can take on the world.
Other days I think I should just stay in bed indefinitely.

Some days I think I have a lot of valuable things to say and share with people that just might help them, even a little.
Other days I think there is no reason in the world anybody should or would listen to me.

Some days I feel like I've been double-dipped in a teflon coating, and nothing anybody says can get me down.
Other days I'm pretty sure there was a hidden meaning in the way he said "hello".

Some days I look in the mirror, smile, and think "you're a little bit cute".
Other days I look in the mirror and look away again as quickly as possible.

Some days I wonder why more people don't think I'm a success?
Other days I can't stand it when people say I inspire them.

Some days I think I'm a real badass for all that I've accomplished.
Other days I remind myself just how much more the "gym girls" can do.

Some days I can't wait for the future and how different it will be.
Other days I fear the future won't be any different than the present.

But every day, I refuse to give up.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

What's my secret?

In the last week two people, at the gym no less, have stopped to ask me what my secret is. Im not entirely sure how to answer that without being a smart ass. I have no secret. Really. I don't take special weight loss pills. I don't eat only grapefruit one day a week. Oh, but here's a secret: I do eat after 6pm. Oh, here's another one: I eat carbs. Yup. Sometimes even refined sugar type carbs. Oh the HORROR!!

I say people have to find what works for them. (I'll save the Weight Watchers "It's not a diet, it's a lifestyle" lecture--although I'm pretty adamant about that concept being the best approach.) And what works for me is pretty much the "KISS" approach. Keep it simple, stupid. Simple for me is the basics: make healthy food choices most of the time. Be aware of what I'm actually eating. Exercise. That is my secret. Oh, and forgive my trespasses. That's a secret learned the hard way.

So now that my secrets are out of the bag, here's a list of products I will consider endorsing, though I'm pretty sure I won't get the same kind of deal Jared has with Subway and I'll have to keep my day job:

--apples (but only Pink Lady...I have my standards!)
--my feet/hand/legs/arms
--music (I'd gladly take an endorsement deal with Eminem or Foo Fighters)

You get the picture.

On a corporate level there are a tiny select few.
--Speir Fitness (But I'd do that for free!)
--Weight Watchers, if and only if, I could sit down with the CEO and convince him that corporately Weight Watcher's view of success is pretty lame. Im not really sure I could endorse a company that canonizes a certain accomplishment and until such time as you achieve that, they really seem to not consider you successful. But that's another post altogether.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Making progress?

It was about five years ago that, having hit rock bottom, I somehow found my way out of a life spent largely in bed, unable to function in any kind of meaningful way.
I made the comment to my friend the other day that I wasn't sure why I bothered. One innocent statement several weeks ago sent me into a tailspin. It wasn't meant to be hurtful, but it was something that made me start to take stock of my life. That took about three minutes. It made me realize just how much of a NON-impact I have on even the small corner of the world I inhabit. And yes, it's depressing. I have many acquaintances. I have very few real friends. I don't have a career, I have a job. I have a nice home, though people are quick to point out it's in an undesirable location. When I suggest my life has no purpose, the only thing people come back with is the weight loss. Hey, I'm proud of myself in that regard, but if my life's worth is summed up the fact that I'm less fat than I used to be, it pretty much proves most of my life has been a giant waste.

Back home there were three of us in our office who had the same birthday. Well, three that became friends. Julieanne, Elison and me. Elison passed away a few years ago from breast cancer. So when birthday time rolls around I think about her. And this year I have asked myself "why Elison? Why not me?" Elison had a family. Sons who needed her and loved her. She had an impact on lives. I don't. Why am I still here, not making any difference in the lives of anybody, and she's gone? It's a tough question to answer for myself.

Tomorrow is Elison's birthday. If you read this, please wear something pink for her.