Saturday, December 17, 2016

Deadlift Day 12.16.16

Front Squat Singles - 1RM Testing
45x8
65x5
85x2
90x1
95x1
100x1
105x1
110x1
115x1
120x1



Deadlift with Trap bar - 1RM Testing
115x1
125x1
135x1
145x1
155x1
165x1
175x1




I'm pretty sure it was a 45 pound trap bar, I compared to a 45 lb plate and they weighed about the same :/


Conventional Deadlift
15x140x1 1 minute rests



Banded pull - Skipped, no bands yet

Seated leg curl
3x75x12

Seated Calf Raise
3x70x15

abs: 100 reps - ran out of time, will do tonight!

What I learned about myself today:

1. I'm stronger than I think
2. I'm a wimp about failing. I thought I would get to a point when I would legit fail, but I didn't (couldn't bring myself to?). Maybe I started too low. Ran out time. I have all the excuses in the book....

Decline Bench Day 12.15.16

Close grip decline bench
45x8
55x8
65x5
75x6
80x6


Over head press - 1RM Testing

45x5
55x3
65x1
70x1
2x75x1 (missed recording the first one!)




close grip cable pull down
75x12
2x80x12

rear delts (Bent over DB raise)
3x10'sx12

hammer curls
3x10'sx12

shrugs
50x12
2x60x12

Crunches
4x15

Air bike
2x20

Squat day, December 13, 2016

Back squat
45x8
55x8
65x5
75x3
85x1
6x105x2

Close stance
3x65x6
These were AWKWARD for m

Wide stance
2x55x6


Seated leg curl
60x12
2x75x12

Toe raise (seated calf raise)
90x12
2x70x15

Weighted crunch
3x8x15

Air bike
3x20 reps

Friday, December 16, 2016

Powerlifting

I can't fucking believe this country elected a pussy grabbing billionaire with Putin's hand up his ass.

I. Can't. Even.

So, instead, I hired a powerlifting coach to critique my form and help me get stronger.

Bench Day, December 11, 2016

Bench press
barx8 -didn't press record 
55x8
65x5
75x3
85x1
95x3 -failed 4th rep
95x2 - second rep barely came up and of course I wasn't recording 
85x8 for the 3rd set. 
50x3
55x3
60x3
65x3


Flat DB bench
10'sx35
2x20x35

Wide grip cable row
50x12
2x60x12

bent over side raise
3x10'sx12

hammer curls with dumbbells
10'sx12
12.5x12
10x12

Barbell Shrugs
30x12
2x50x12

Air bike
3x20

Ball pull-ins
2x15

Crunch
2x10

Stay tuned for more.

Wednesday, November 9, 2016

Dear Trump Voter (#NotMyPresident)

I feel I need to write one more post about the election, but I'm having trouble expressing all of my feelings. I cannot keep my mouth shut when so many are being bullied and threatened. Many of my so-called friends have insulted me in the most personal ways because I can't reconcile their choices with my own most closely held beliefs, which makes me question the validity of their friendship. What are these crazy beliefs? Here are a few:

That bullying isn't right.
That women are human and do not deserve to be assaulted.
That people should not be ridiculed for being less than model-attractive, overweight, or disabled.
That veterans, soldiers and families of fallen soldiers should be honored, not disparaged.
That people who fall into any minority group deserve as much respect as anyone else.
That parents should not make lewd comments about their children.
That billionaires should pay taxes.
That we should keep jobs in the US even if moving them offshore saves us money.
That threatening journalist's lives is wrong.
That suggesting the assassination of your opponent is wrong.
That plagiarism is wrong.
That seeking the truth is good.
That climate change is real and affects all of us.

Most of these are complete no-brainers to me - if I consider you a friend, I assumed you shared these basic human rights beliefs, regardless of political affiliation. However, Trump has shat on every single one of these beliefs and those who voted for him have condoned his behavior.

I did not ask who you voted for, you shared. I know of only one person who has given me a reason that wasn't in direct conflict with my values. This is why I don't feel I can be friends with you, Trump voter. Not because you're a Republican, or a conservative, but because your moral compass is in such conflict with my own. You may not have voted for him because of these things, maybe you voted for him despite these of these terrible things he has done and said. I don't know. However, I have never hidden my beliefs, and I trusted that you were good person, one who cares about other people, our country and our planet. You have violated my trust, and there is no true friendship without trust.

I'm sure you will continue to say hateful things about me, about women, about immigrants, about minorities, about how I'm a sore loser, and can't accept anyone that disagrees with me. We can agree to disagree, that's fine. This is a free country (for now) so you get to have your beliefs, and I am still allowed to have mine. You now have the President you deserve.

I will continue to grieve the loss of human decency in my beloved country. The country that my ancestors fought for in the American Revolutionary War. The country my other ancestors immigrated to in order to find a better life. Things will settle down, I will begin to post about non-political things again. But things will never be the same between us, and that's not my fault.

Tuesday, November 8, 2016

Today is the Day

This is a momentous day. Possibly the most important election of my life, past AND future. It is momentous just because we are THIS CLOSE to having a woman in the White House! But to counter that, we have her polar opposite running against her. A rude, loud, obnoxious bully who ridicules the disabled, preaches hate, incites violence, uses and discards women, and doesn't even have a shred of respect for this country or our democracy. This is truly a decision between love and hate, decency and deplorable, dare I say good and evil. What he embodies is not change, even though his supporters preach that constantly. He embodies everything that I associate with a dictator mixed with a schoolyard bully. When did we start to accept bullies again? He is the kid who would push down the disabled kid to steal his school money, the kid who put a mirror on his show to look up girls dresses (before he decided molesting them was better?), the kid who calls other children names.

Which brings me to my next point. There are people on Facebook who have called others immature for unfriending them because they did not share political beliefs. Not sharing political beliefs is one thing, but supporting someone this despicable without any understandable reason, That is someone I can no longer be friends with. It's not about intolerance of those who disagree with me, its about looking away when the bully attacks another child. It's about not standing up against the person who tells racist jokes, and it's about being idle when women are degraded right in front you. I cannot stand by and let that happen without saying something, and if that causes me to lose a "friend" then they're not a friend that shares my basic values, which is no loss at all in my mind.

Oh and I worked out yesterday but have been too busy to post it.

Butchered Mess of All Pro's Day 2

Supplements
Pre/Intra: 1 Scoops Champion Performance Amino Shooter Edge in Blue Raspberry and 3g Creatine Monohydrate
Post: 1 scoop Champion Performance Pure Whey Plus in Coffee

Warmup - Treadmill, foam roller, stretching, frog sit, paused goblet squats, arm circles of peace, wrist and forearm stretching

Bench Press
45 x 10
55 x 10
2 x 85 x 6

Had to do bench first because someone was alternating between an Olympic Bar Curl and an elevated pushup in the squat rack :eyeroll:

Back Squat
45 x 11


55 x 8


95 x 6


95 x 6 (tried a different camera angle)



Depth suffered today because of dude curling in the squat rack and my legs had a chance to get all tight again. I really thought this curling in the squat rack was mostly a funny joke and it didn't really happen often

Standing Calf Raise
145 x 9
155 x 10

Bent Over Barbell Row
30 x 10
50 x 8
2 x 90 x 6

Overhead Press
2 x 60 x 6

Romanian Deadlift
115 x 8
125 x 5

Assisted Pullup
2 x 160 x 5

Knee felt better after a weekend rest. Doesn't bother me at all when squatting, but I have to be careful when I stand and turn, pretty much doing anything. No crazy injury or anything, but it sometimes feels loose. Wrist also feels better, but instead of a true wrist pain, it is a grip pain. Feel it sometimes when I grip something or move my fingers a specific way, such as while scratching an itch. Likely a grip overuse thing. Straps will help. Maybe I can find room in my budget for versa grips. it didn't bother me much today, I tried hard to not have a death grip on things, as well as keep my wrists straight with my forearms.

Also, more half rep hilarity. One was a woman who I KNOW trains with the owner. I love him, think he's a great guy and all, but this is why I would not pay to train with him. I really wanted to say something, but I don't think it's my business. The owner should be saying something! Grrrrrrr.

Also, my gym might close Friday for Veterans day, which means I'll have to figure out a workout maybe Saturday? Crap though, I have to work late Saturday.

KonMari Method

Friday, November 4
Calories: 2387
Carbs: 177
Fat: 98
Protein: 144
Fiber: 30
Steps: 11,787
Activity: Extra Butchered All Pro's day 1, Dog walk
Saturday, November 5
Calories: 2173
Carbs: 155
Fat: 125
Protein: 73
Fiber: 24
Steps: 11,379
Activity: Dog walk, house cleaning

Sunday, November 6
Calories: 1884
Carbs: 124
Fat: 102
Protein: 135
Fiber: 20
Steps: 15,225
Activity: Dog walk, house cleaning
Weight: 183

To look at how I've been eating, you would think that I didn't care if I lost more weight or not.

Not really related to weight loss or working out, I have been reading this book: The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying: A Simple, Effective Way to Banish Clutter Forever by Marie Kondo. Apparently she has this cult-like following. The process feels very Japanese-Spiritual - As you declutter, you select what items to keep by how you feel when you touch them, i.e. does this item spark joy in your heart? When you discard something, whether it is because it does not spark joy or is beyond it's useful life, or whatever reason, you say thank you to the item for it's service to you before discarding it. She greets her home, and thanks her shoes, coat, etc. for their service daily. It's a little kooky, but apparently all this mumbo jumbo works for some people, so I'm willing to give it a shot. I am a packrat at heart so always looking for the magic fix to declutter my home. I'll probably talk more about this in the future, as this method seems hard for me to really embrace, but I did have a great moment this morning.

I wore this shirt to the gym.



I love this shirt. Why do I love it? Because it was a PR for me, and the shirt was very flattering (when I was at a runner's weight). When I went through my drawers yesterday, I kept the shirt because I believed it sparked joy (I'm still getting the hang of this touch something to see if it sparks joy or not thing). When I set out my gym clothes last night, I grabbed this shirt. Fast forward to this morning at the gym. It's slightly too small, rides up while I'm lifting, and has a gatorade dribble stain on the front. On top of all of that, it has a permanent stink to it that doesn't come out until I'm warmed up. All the febreeze and baking soda in the world hasn't been able to clear that up. :/

So after this morning's workout, I bid this shirt goodbye and thanked it for its service, remembering the countless runs it served me, of course recording it on the internet for posterity's sake. Because a photo on the internet does not clutter my house.

Friday, November 4, 2016

New Direction

It's no secret that my blog has been a bit stagnant. Sometimes you just don't want to write, ya know?

But some of my loveliest friends told me they would love to see me write about lifting, which is doable because I do a lot of it, and I already do a log on a fitness site. So I'm going to start sharing with you more.

First things first, I try to track and share my macros and weight daily, so here's this:

Thursday, November 3
Calories: 2056
Carbs: 101
Protein: 144
Fat: 108
Fiber: 41
Steps: 11,728
Activity: Dog walk
Weight: 185

As far as personal life goes, this is my last weekend off likely until June or July. I plan on enjoying it! Plus tonight will be last post work dog walk in daylight :sniffle: Damn winter.

I also lifted this morning:

Routine: Butchered Mess of All Pro's

Supplements
Pre/Intra: 1 Scoops Champion Performance Amino Shooter Edge in Blue Raspberry and 3g Creatine Monohydrate
Post: 1.5 scoops Champion Performance Pure Whey Plus in Coffee

Warmup - Treadmill, foam roller, stretching, frog sit, paused goblet squats, arm circles of peace, wrist and forearm stretching

Back Squat
45 x 8
55 x 8
85 x 8



95 x 5



Standing Calf Raise
2 x 145 x 10

Bench Press
45 x 10
55 x 8
2 x 85 x 5





 

Bent Over Barbell Row
30 x 8
50 x 8
80 x 6
90 x 5

Overhead Press
2 x 60 x 5

Romanian Deadlift
2 x 115 x 8

Assisted Pullup
160 x 5
160 x 4

So I'm massacring All Pros. Don't know that I want to do low reps on calves since they are strong and I'd prefer hypertrophy there. Can't really do low reps on Romanian Deadlifts yet (or increase the weight the way I should for low reps) since grip is not there yet. However, I'm totally stoked on low reps for squat bench, rows, overhead press and assisted pullups.

I have been noticing wrist pain the last couple workouts. Noticed it on bench Wednesday, and noticed it a lot today. I brought my grip in a little on bench and the pain was less there, but I still felt it a lot in my workout. I also felt some weird sensations in random joints/tendons. I think I'll finish this 2 week cycle and then do a deload leading into Thanksgiving, and then hit a new cycle and/or program right after Thanksgiving. That will coincide with my plan to maintain through the end of the year and maybe I'll see some good strength gains during the time of eating. :D

Anyway, hope whoever is actually still reading likes the new direction! Have a wonderful weekend!

Friday, September 23, 2016

MAFS Overreactions

One of my favorite junk TV reality shows right now is "Married at First Sight." I always root for the couples to stay together and think its really interesting how difficult marriage can be whether you choose the person you marry or not.

This season is annoying the fuck out of me though. I think Heather is being a spoiled brat pretty much because she wasn't completely honest with the experts. And now Lillian has pissed me off too.

Last week's episode has her being really weird, leaving without saying goodbye, and coming back from a doctor's appointment as a total wreck. What could be wrong, to cause her to cry for hours on end and refuse to get out of bed? I'm thinking she has cancer, is infertile, something major and serious. What horrible news did her doctor give her?

She has to have shoulder surgery.

Da Fuq?

Now, I get it. Having surgery is really disappointing. It's a big bummer. And maybe I'm judging her too harshly. But really? What. The. Fuck.

Try infertility. Try multiple IVF's. Try cancer. Try miscarriage. Try anything that might impact your life in a major way. Sure, I cried when my RE told me I had to stop running or doing any kind of exercise during my treatments and potential pregnancy, but I cried for a few minutes, and I was bummed for a few days, I complained a whole lot, but I didn't spend extra time in bed! For fuck's sake. If I were told I had to have shoulder surgery now, as I'm working really hard on getting stronger and losing weight, I would be bummed, but I don't think I would cry or wallow in bed. I don't know if she is a competitive athlete, but they don't even show her exercising on the show, so really what the fuck does she have to winge on and on about?

Fucking ridiculous. Some people have no clue how lucky they are.

Wednesday, September 21, 2016

The Mental Side of Fitness

I'm in such a good place right now.

Originally, I wanted to get to the low 160's by Halloween. Oh well, I'm okay that I won't get there. It would be nice to get to 175 or lower by Thanksgiving, which is totally doable, however, I'm not going to sacrifice my vacation or holidays to get there. I have such a better outlook on this journey now than I have in years past. I don't need to give up and eat all the things, but I don't stress out over going over my allotted calories either. I decide what I want, and it's no longer all or nothing with hard and fast rules.

Whatever weight I am at Thanksgiving is the weight I will work to maintain until January 1. I will work to lift heavy 3-4 times a week. I am not going to deny myself some of the holiday yummies, but I'm also not going to go crazy.  I am so amazed that I have gotten here. I wish more women could get to this place. This the most mentally healthy I have ever been regarding my weight and health, and this includes when I was 155 lbs and relatively thin.

Now of course I still have all kinds of pants that don't fit, but there's always next year ;)

Saturday, August 20, 2016

What Is Our World Coming To?

Seriously, to exist in this world, especially as a woman, is to have a thick skin. It doesn't help when you have a presidential candidate who is all about being mean - making fun of the disabled, saying horribly racist things, and basing his entire personality on being the most misogynistic person I have ever seen. The most shocking (and scary) thing about Trump running for President is the sheer masses of people who support him. That hit home for me, as I live in a blue state and are mostly surrounded by people I thought were reasonable and certainly not racist so I was under the (wrong) perception that our country had progressed a lot more than it apparently has.

Now I know this country is far more racist and sexist than I ever could imagine. I mean, I knew there were always going to be a few crazies out there, and I knew that the Religious Right want to take away my reproductive rights in the name of Jesus, but the sheer hatred I see now daily - on the news and social media mostly - is devastating.

Now, this is not new, I have been feeling like this for a while. But what brought it to top of mind this week that I felt I needed to write a blog? A silly YouTube by Meg Squats

Meg Squats is awesome. She's authentic, goofy and strong AF while still being a woman. I don't always watch her videos through to the end, because while powerlifting is cool to watch, I don't always need to watch her whole workout. I'm more interested in her candor about body image, crossfit, makeup, supplements, etc. This particular video is not her energetic self, and I didn't end up watching until the end so I don't know how the beach actually went (she was sick and it was making me feel so bad for her), but I did scroll down to the comments. Some were so disparaging, insulting and rude. It made me sad, not for her because she is a strong, tough woman that probably ran out of fucks to give a long time ago, but for society. That these people are the norm. The fucking "shamers" - no matter what you do, someone will try to shame you for it. It's fucking ridiculous. Apparently, that whole stone throwing thing went out the window with love thy neighbor and feed the poor, care for the sick, etc.

Yes, to put yourself out there on the internet, you have to have a thick skin. But you don't need to be strong or intelligent to type out rude and insulting comments on the Internet, and apparently the same goes for supporting Trump. Considering how behind we are socially, I don't know if I will live long enough to see a time when everyone is given the same opportunities despite race, sex, orientation, ability, socioeconomic status, etc.

Friday, August 19, 2016

On being happy


I'm finding with age comes wisdom. I had to get older to develop my IDGAF attitude. I had to step away to realize the energy I was putting towards a baby could be better spent in other ways. It's not always easy, but while I'm always looking for opportunity, I am also learning to be content with life as it stands. I have self-awareness and confidence I never had as a young girl, but I still struggle with loving myself when it comes to my appearance.

I can't imagine what it is like for girls today with more media than ever bombarding society with perfection. I am lucky enough to have grown up mostly without photoshop, no internet, so smartphones, limited television and media outlets, and certainly no social media, no comments from the peanut gallery of society either.

For me, 35 or so years ago, it felt simpler. I don't think I really started worrying about my appearance until I was about 9. I moved from my local school with kids who were in mostly my same socioeconomic level, and went to a magnet school with smart kids bussed in from all over the city. Interesting enough, most of these kids came from upper class neighborhoods (I still wonder if that was because they sought out the upper class kids for the program or if the lower income families just didn't have time to worry about learning) and all of a sudden I was being ridiculed for my clothes, my lunch, my haircut, etc. It's no wonder I started worrying about my appearance at a young age. I started to worry if my nose was too big, and if I had the right shoes or had capri sun and doritos in my lunch. Fortunately, I was thin at the time, so nobody could make fun of my weight.

We eventually moved to a different area, and when I started 7th grade, I was new with a clean slate. Since I was now more concerned with my appearance (and I had more control over my clothes) I fit in as well as anyone could. I was certainly not the most popular kid, but I was not an outcast. And yet, my confidence wavered. One day, in art class, we were cutting out magazine photos and I came across a Shape magazine. At that point, I became fairly obsessed with exercise and losing weight. I was practically my full height by 7th grade, and was creeping up to above 120 pounds. Oh the horror! I would count out my breakfast and my lunch to make sure I had only eaten 1000 calories before dinner because I decided that my family dinners couldn't be more than 500 calories and that would allow me to hit my goal of 1500 calories a day. Thank goodness I was not adept at counting calories at that time! I did aerobics in my bedroom, and ab exercises every day after school.

I already mentioned that I started lifting weights in high school, and I do remember not counting calories but going to the gym every day after school. I was not in any way, shape or form fat, but I wasn't really excited with my abs (I'm an apple shape for sure and carry most of my fat in my belly). I can remember trying to chase that 120 pounds for so long, thinking if I could get to 120 pounds, I would look great (and I could exercise racehorses, especially if I could get my weight even a few pounds lower). So much information on how to get fit and lose weight, as well as no comparisons for anyone my height. I remember 120 being the "ideal" weight - yeah, maybe for someone 5'5" with no muscle mass!

Fast forward over the years - higher weight, lower weight, higher, lower, higher. I never did get back to 120 pounds, thank goodness, but I still have not been happy. Fortunately, I never developed a serious eating disorder, but I do have a crap relationship with food. I could blame my body for a lot of things, including failing to get pregnant. But now I'm actually happy with my strong, incredible body. I do think some of it comes from age and accompanying wisdom, and it helps that I no longer have a single fuck to spare. I'm not 100% satisfied, I know I have a long way to go, but building muscle has helped my body image more than anything else, including being bombarded with "love your body" messages. Having real scientific information on how to eat and work out helps too - knowledge is power and I feel capable, which also helps.

I am now on a journey. The journey is most important because there is no finish line! When I get to a lower body fat, I won't be done - that is the time to lift heavy and try to build muscle. An athlete never stops trying to get better, and I don't want to stop either. And now that I have found happiness,  I have also found flexibility and freedom. As early as a a few months ago, I had set my time limit on getting to my "goal weight" at the end of October, but no later than the end of November. Well, shit happens, and I am not losing fast enough for any of that.

But in struggle, also comes opportunity. After my years of stupid dieting, I do not lose the way I probably should based on my activity and calories. I should probably spend some time looking for my maintenance calories, and at least giving myself a bit of a diet break. I am not willing to do that yet, however. I do want to give myself a chance to lose a bit more. I also don't want to be dieting over the holidays. I've always heard that maintenance is the best plan over the holidays, and I want to give that a shot. So, no matter what weight I am, I will start maintenance on Thanksgiving day, focusing on moderation, eating like a normal person (rather than a binger or a dieter), and continuing to count my calories and weighing daily to find my maintenance level. Because I've already found happiness in my strength, my confidence won't take a hit, and if anything, I will be able to hit weight loss better than ever in January because of my refreshed metabolism and any extra muscle mass I have been able to gain over those six weeks or so. I'm super happy and confident with this plan. Here's to future, as well as the present!

Thursday, August 18, 2016

New Look

Once again, I thought I needed a change. Even though I have moved away from being an infertility blogger and want to move away from being a childfree blogger, I can't bring myself to really remove those links from the right hand side of the screen. I'm going to guess those who read my blog now either already know me or they found me in a search, and my goal is to move further from that niche and just be a woman blogger with a side of fitness. Which means those links aren't relevant any longer.

I suppose I will start thinking about who and where I should link. As well as update bios, etc. So much work to do when you evolve.  All those people are still in my Feedly so I will still be keeping up with them.

Here's to new beginnings and fresh starts.

Wednesday, August 17, 2016

Dear Self: Please Always Remember This

You're a total and complete bad ass. And lifting made you that way.

My love affair with weights began a long time ago, in high school, on swim team. I grew up in a completely non-athletic home, and never even really knew about sports, running or even calisthenics, body building etc. So as a 15  year old high school sophomore who had joined the swim team, when they took us into the weight room for dry land training, I could barely lift a thing. Fortunately, one of the biggest reasons beginners progress so quickly is due to better muscle activation after a few sessions. I lifted in swim team, and then joined a gym after I left the team. I continued lifting off and on for years, but I then had a knee injury and quit cold turkey.

After that, I didn't consistently have a gym membership so I didn't consistently lift weights. I thought I was a "hard gainer" who didn't build muscle easily, but what I really had was an issue with training and eating, trying to do a haphazard lifting routine on a very low calorie diet.

When I really took weight loss seriously, I actually quit lifting. Why? Because I lost weight faster when I didn't lift. Um, yeah! That's all your muscle leaving your body! I hadn't quit my gym membership at that time, but I rarely, if ever, went into the weight room. I used the gym for the treadmill. I was running half marathons and training for my first full, and was successful at getting to a healthy weight, but I was no happy with how I looked. I was still skinny fat.

If you've read my blog for any length of time, you know I have adopted many diet schemes. Weight watchers, "Real Food." eating "clean," Whole 30, and many more. All gimmicks. Now I look back at all the ups and downs I've had over the years, many, many ups and downs in weight, and the one thing I didn't have was a solid lifting program or a reasonable diet. I'm not sure why this year was different.

I joined a gym and started by only doing cardio. Then I looked at my bookshelf with "The New Rules of Lifting for Women" a book I had bought 8 years ago, and said, what the heck, I might as well try. I finished that program and then got excited about starting a REAL, LIVE BODYBUILDING ROUTINE! So I've been lifting weights consistently for 7 months now, and my self esteem is through the roof.

I didn't try to lose weight at first, I didn't even count calories, and then I found IIFYM (If it fits your macros) and flexible dieting. It's like Weight Watchers but much more reasonable calorie wise, and puts some emphasis on where your calories are coming from. I take the most flexible approach, stay at or under my calories, and try to get a minimum of 1 gram of protein per pound of lean body mass, at least 50 grams of fat and the rest in whatever I feel like. I eat a lot of veggies, lean meat and fruit, but also allow myself to have pasta, cheese, tortilla chips, even wine. I don't beat myself up over anything - a missed workout, a lazy day, a day of going over my calories, or even going under my protein. It's only one day, and I get right back on the program then next day.

I am still nowhere near my goal weight, but I see muscle in my legs and arms. I can squat below parallel. I can deadlift 135 lbs. I'm starting to bench press and working towards doing a chin up. Weight loss has been slow, but instead of counting the pounds until I can eat fries, I have a moderate amount of fries if I want them. What I am doing is sustainable, and I don't feel deprived. I finally feel like this is a journey, and as long as I don't dwell on my chubby midsection, I feel hot AF.

And I owe all of this to lifting weights. I love being strong, and I hope I always remember that no matter how tight money is, I always make room for lifting one way or another.

Tuesday, August 9, 2016

2016 Goals

I did not do a resolutions post in January. In fact, I was sorely missing from this blog for several months right around that time. No bother, resolutions are fickle anyway. But, I have more than 4 months to accomplish things this year, and I am pretty determined to.

Weight Loss
Still going, not as fast as I would like, but I'll take what I can get. I am hoping that some of the slowness is due to gaining some muscle mass as I lose fat. I guess we'll see. Right now I'm in the upper 180's. I was hoping to be in the 160's before Thanksgiving. We'll see. Losing weight while prioritizing weight training is a new one for me so I'm not really sure where I will end up weight wise, I just know how I want to look. I'm also not depriving myself at all. There used to be a time when I would starve myself every weekday and then go hog wild on weekends, so of course my Friday morning weight would be far less than my Monday morning weight. I'm pretty consistent now, so my approach to food is definitely healthier.

Strength
I am currently running a lifting program that has me doing all basic lifts - squat, bench, bent over row, Romanian deadlift, overhead press, calf raise and assisted chin ups. My goal is to increase my strength by 25% by end of September, and then another 25% by the end of of the year. Those are fairly lofty goals, especially while eating in a deficit, but it gives me something to push for

Fitness
I do miss running, but I'm not interested in any long distance stuff right now. I haven't really run much since last year's LA Marathon. I am running through the Zombies, Run! C25K program, and should finish that by end of September. After that I want to just improve my 5K time. I would like to be 5K ready and possibly enter some races, even though there really aren't races in my little po dunk town.

Finances
Still working towards paying off debt. Hoping hub's business gets off the ground soon.

Home
I need to spend more time with home organization. The chaos is driving me nuts. I think I need to implement a daily to do list to try and get it under control without burning out.

Marriage
We have definitely fallen into a rut, and I'm not the nicest wife these days due to stress caused by his business not yet making any money. I'm going to make a concerted effort to be nicer.

Whew, that's enough goals for now.

Monday, August 8, 2016

101 Things Update

Well, 101 things in 1001 days didn't work out. It's been 2540 days and I did not finish.

But I have continued to accomplish some stuff, so yay.

During the first half of the year, I finished New Rules of Lifting 4 Women and now I am doing a classic weight training routine.

I've grown some tomatoes, and some peppers. Herbs were harder.

I still haven't been to Napa, but I did discover Calaveras and Amador county wine regions and they are lovely (as well as being much closer to me!)

We went to the Winchester Mystery House a few years ago, during a midnight tour.

Hubs is starting a new business!

I've been watching all kinds of plays with the local theatre groups being so accessible.

I've been so lacking in other areas, but have been able to do other things I never knew I wanted to do... such as visit one of the most haunted places in the US, AT NIGHT (Walker Ames House). I've also been to Bodie at night, THREE times! Drove up the coast with only my dogs as company, and I'm going to do it again. Celebrated Halloween and Christmas with my mom, even though we had to do both at the same time in early October. Cut down and then decorated my dream Christmas tree (easily twice as tall as me).

I do think about the person I was seven (holy crap, SEVEN?) years ago. I am not the same person now. Many of the items on my list aren't as important to the person I am today.

I think goals are important, so I will be sharing some new ones, as well as some plans. Goals and plans, plans and goals.

Saturday, July 16, 2016

We Are Not Alone

At this point in my journey, I no longer think as much about my infertility, my childlessness, or my miscarriage. I am mostly at peace and I enjoy my life, as it is, with the freedoms as well as the missed experiences. I accept my life as is and don't dwell too often on what's missing.

However, sometimes a situation comes along that brings you right back into the fold of of TTC. My friend revealed to a small group of us that she recently suffered a miscarriage. Of course, all the normal feelings accompany that. She is worried that she will never have children, she knows it wasn't her fault but still feels like she should have been able to do something. During this conversation, another older friend of ours mentioned that she had been trying but had not gotten pregnant. This started a whole conversation about miscarriage, infertility, treatments, and childless options.

First, I want to talk about my wonderful, courageous friend. She is obviously still hurting, as we all would be or have been in that situation. She is talking about it though because she felt so alone even though she knows that most have either had one or someone close to them has. We are not alone, but nobody talks about it which is why she has decided to speak up. I love her for this. Her mother went through menopause in her 30's so she is understandable worried that she will not get pregnant again or will continue to have miscarriages. Knowing what I know, I can't tell her not to worry or assure her she will be a mom or any of that nonsense that people who don't know like to say. I can tell her that I am sorry, that all her feelings are valid and she can always talk to me, anytime she needs me. I hope for her, that she will get pregnant again when she is ready and that pregnancy will give her a healthy little human. But if it doesn't, she knows she has someone who understands.

Now my next friend. She's older, although could be younger than me, I don't really know. She just got married last year and was open about them trying. I am so glad the conversation was started because I was able to give her a lot of information about testing, fertility treatments, etc. I don't know how long they have been trying, but I know she is over 35 so she should probably think about at least getting a semen analysis. It was probably a little overwhelming for her but she was asking questions so I know she wanted the information. Knowledge is power.

And now me. All the feels, for real, yo. I was able to get through it without too much sadness and very little crying. That sounds odd, but felt like a win for me. Most of my sadness was for my friend, because I still remember how the whole process felt. The desperation, the pain, the sadness, the guilt, the jealousy. All of it came right back, and I completely knew how my friend was feeling. On the other side, I felt a little bit of jealousy as well, because both of these women, while worried, are not completely hopeless like I am at this time. That hopelessness is a blessing and a curse. I know most of you understand that more than you would like to.

Ahh, life.

Wednesday, June 8, 2016

The Feels

Holy hell. I found myself an emotional wreck yesterday.

It likely started with me leaving my boys behind to go on a trip, and the fact that my period is due in the next couple of days.

Add to it that I didn't change (didn't even think to change!) my political party affiliation on my voter registration so when I voted, I didn't get to vote for the person I wanted to. I really felt like I let myself down there. I also remember a time when it didn't matter any longer, everyone got to vote for anyone. And I just now realized I could have written the person in. Isn't it strange how being upset about something causes your problem solving abilities to go right out the window?

So after all of this, I was going over my flight details with the hubs, and noticed that I was never assigned a seat on the longest leg (red eye!) of my flight.The flight I booked THREE MONTHS ago. Of course I tried to grab a seat online, and all that was left was middles. I called, and while very apologetic, there is nothing they can do for me until I'm at the airport. I'm pissed at the airline (I answered all those seat preference questions and I said "window, window, window," but I'm more pissed at myself because I missed such a key detail in travel plans. I have my fingers crossed that something window will open up because I plan to pop some sleeping pills and pass out for the duration. With any luck I'll be asleep before we even take off, and if I'm in some middle seat and the window person wakes me up because they have to pee, I may FLIP OUT.

Of course, I don't really consider how I'm feeling until I was watching bad reality TV, drinking wine and icing my knee, and all of a sudden I was overwhelmed with sobs. Fortunately, my only witness was one of the dogs.

All the feels. UGH.

Thursday, June 2, 2016

Gwynnie Bee Trial and Review



So one day, I was perusing Facebook and saw an ad for Gwynnie Bee, Plus Sized Clothing Rental. My first thought was "I'm not plus sized!" and then I realized I, in fact, am plus sized. And I actually have a need for nicer clothing but only once in a while. I work in a fairly casual environment, but once or twice a year, I attend an industry event which I need to dress up for (yes, business casual is dressing up for me). I absolutely hate buying clothes because 1. I have no fashion sense really 2. I have nowhere local to really go and shop and 3. I've not been at a weight I consider acceptable in at least two years. I have one of those conferences coming up and they offered a 30 day trial. I thought "This could work!"

About three weeks in advance of my conference, I went online to sign up and start picking clothes out. I wanted to make sure I had a chance to exchange items that I didn't like or wouldn't look good on me, didn't fit, etc. First thing I noticed - I really thought there would be more of a profile option, such as "put in your measurements and we'll tell you which size is best" kind of like Stitch Fix. Um, no. Nothing like that. It doesn't even keep your preferences in place, like only show me clothes that are available in size 14. Nope. So many times I would be looking at something, and then realize the smallest size they have is a 20. So you end up clicking around until you actually find something you might like and are lucky that they have a size chart AND carry the size you think you need. Yes, at least one of the labels didn't even have a size chart. The whole process was time consuming and tedious and felt like shopping except I didn't even have the ability to try anything on yet.

The next hurdle is that you have to add at least 25 items to your "closet" before they will even cue up your shipment. You can "prioritize" items, but that doesn't mean you have any control over what they send you. AND I had a pretty hard time picking 25 items. So many were nowhere near "my style." That could have been helpful because I don't really have "fashion" sense once you get past the classics, so it made me step outside of my comfort zone, but again, you have no choice what you get. If you have an event coming up that you need a certain type of outfit for, good luck. If there is something that you REALLY want to try, chances are you won't be able to.



A sample of my closet.
So, I added 25 items to my closet but it took them at least another 3 days to ship me anything, and then you have to give it 2-4 days for the postal service to deliver. This does not work for me, even when you can go online to let them know what you're sending back. I signed up on a Saturday, they shipped on Tuesday, and then because the following weekend was a holiday weekend, I didn't receive my shipment until the following Tuesday. That's NINE DAYS without my first shipment.

First thing Tuesday morning, I went to the post office to pick up my package so I could try everything on.and make an exchange if I needed to. Two out of the three dresses they decided to send were very, very similar. I understand that they aren't looking at my whole wish list and choosing different items to give you variety, but that was annoying. I mean, what are the chances? I liked them both, but liked one more than the other and would have liked to exchange it for something different. The third was too small despite ordering by the size chart. Now, If I had read all the reviews for that particular garment, I would have known to order a size or two larger, but when you're struggling to add enough clothes to your closet just to get them to ship anything to you, you might not have time to read everything. I know I sure didn't. So I notified them that morning of my return (supposedly so they could begin preparing my next shipment) AND got the package back to the post office the same day (Tuesday) for the morning pick up. I was nervous to send back the other dress because again, I have no idea if what they are sending to me will be appropriate for my conference. I hoped they would let me know what next item they are sending so I could decide if I wanted to try sending that dress back. Well, did not get that notification until today. Once I added the days in my head, even if I notified them today, I guarantee they won't ship until Monday, and then the next garment wouldn't arrive until after I leave for my conference. So I'm stuck with two dresses that are at least fraternal twin looking. Hopefully nobody looks at me and thinks I wore the same outfit two days in a row.

What I'll get to wear
I'm pretty disappointed with the whole experience. I joined on the 20th of May and my trial expires on June 19, but I didn't get a single garment until the last day of May. I don't have the option to wear anything and have still have something I could use for a specific event, which is the only reason I would continue my membership. Even if I wore clothes like this daily, using this service instead of purchasing clothes, it leaves you without new something to wear for days on end. I thought the whole point of renting clothes was so you could have the fun of new things to wear without actually having to own clothes. Not so much, unless you want to spring for the higher level and get a LOT of garments at once. Heck, three garments at a time is $100! And AT MOST, you're getting three garments a week, which is half the days you likely need to be dressed. However, reading a few more reviews, there was more than one person who mentioned trying something on and then sending it right back without wearing it. So that essentially reduces the number of garments you can actually wear, since it still takes 6 days to exchange things.

As much as I wanted this to work, it just isn't going to. I won't be continuing my membership.

Ok, now that I've given you my honest opinion, if you would like to try it, you can get 30 days free by using this link. That being said, since I'm not going to continue with them, I'm not going to get any benefit for using this link so don't feel obligated in the slightest.

Maybe if you live in a less remote area with USPS service more often than I get, it might work for you. Have you tried Gwynnie Bee or another rental service and had better luck?

Tuesday, May 24, 2016

I've Made a Decision

Since the Shape Scale still hasn't even announced a price or a launch date or anything, I have pre-ordered the Naked!



If you are interested and order with my referral link, you will get $50 off.

I can't wait until March!

Sunday, May 15, 2016

Weight Loss Mistakes I've made

I've been successful in the past, which means I haven't been successful overall. I hit a low weight with Weight Watchers but still wasn't happy with the way my body looked under all those clothes. I am determined to be happy with my body by the time hubs and I head out on our 10 year anniversary/vow renewal. I have turned over a new leaf and I am righting all the mistakes I have made. I had to take a hard look at myself and do what I was not willing to do.

1. I was looking for an easy/quick fix

Let me tell you, Weight Watchers seemed easy, at least in the one points program I did. Fruit cost points, vegetables did not until you hit a certain threshold and then they did. I knew the "theory" behind points and was able to work my program perfectly within those parameters. Since then, WW has changed the program at least twice and I was not successful on either of those plans, and I know why.

How I've changed this: Realizing there is no quick or easy when it comes to long term weight loss. I have figured out my TDEE (Total Daily Energy Expenditure) based on weekly planned exercise and I disconnected my FitBit from My Fitness Pal. I no longer give myself a pass to eat more on days I workout. I attempt to eat approximately the same number of calories a day, get a minimum amount of protein and fat, and then fill in the rest with whatever I want.

2. I wanted it to happen too fast

When I started trying to lose weight again, I would cut my calories drastically. My weight loss would start good, then fizzle out and then slow to a crawl. Often I was eating less than my BMR, which is the calories my body uses daily just to survive. This would suppress my metabolism, and create a vicious cycle.

How I've changed this: I try to eat about 20-25% less than my TDEE number for slower weight loss. This is actually a large deficit because I have a significant amount of fat to lose. For anyone lighter/closer to goal, I would recommend no more than 20%, and maybe even closer to 10%. 

3. I wasn't really counting

Yes, my first Weight Watchers plan was "counting" and the margin of error was small with the way it was set up. Plus of course they also put you on the lowest possible deficit. When fruits and vegetables started being completely "free" I no longer tracked them and therefore failed. When I would use My Fitness Pal to track, I still didn't track correctly - I never counted vegetables (um, they have calories too!) and I rarely weighed anything, preferring to eyeball my portions. This is wrong people. Chickens these days are on steroids or something. A chicken breast can be as heavy as 8-10 ounces!

How I've changed this: I now weigh everything I can, and in grams instead of ounces. The more accurate the better! I do not use volume measurements, except sometimes with vegetables. I don't always weigh my vegetables, BUT I still count them. The calories are low so I know the difference will be minor, but I make sure I still count them.

4. I put too much emphasis on the scale 

The focus on Weight Watchers (at least back then) was scale weight. If you gained or stayed the same, they would give you condolences. As much as I know in my brain that weight loss has little to do with how you look and feel, the losses were validating and a bit addictive. A week with no loss either pushed you to try harder (i.e. cut more points) or give up altogether.

How I've changed this: Weight loss doesn't always follow a true linear path. Sometimes you see no progress for weeks, and there are many reasons for it. I now do circumference measurements as well as caliper body fat measurements in addition to the scale. This helps keep me motivated even if the scale doesn't tell me what I want to hear. Eventually I will be fitting into smaller pants. Who cares how much you weigh if you're the size you want to be?

5. I gave up resistance training

See above! I found that when I lifted weight, my weight loss might stall. Now, we all know this is mostly water retention in muscles, and maybe a little bit of muscle gain, but neither of those is going to keep you fat. In fact, muscle mass makes you look better at a higher weight.

How I've changed this: I started lifting again! And not the way most women usually do or I have done in the past, I started doing heavy compound lifts like squats and deadlifts. I know I won't be building that much muscle while in a caloric defict, but those are the muscles that will give my body shape when the fat is gone. Don't be afraid of heavy weight!

6. I gave up or switched gears too quickly

When weight loss would stall, or I would be feeling discouraged, or I read about another diet "plan" or workout program, I would switch things up. I have diet and fitness ADD. Again, sometimes there are changes happening and you don't realize it right away.

How I've changed this: I'm forcing myself to stay on the same path for at least a month at a time. I have also promised myself that if I go three weeks without positive changes, THEN I'm allowed to make a small change. When that happens, my small change will be minor - maybe 100 calories less than what I shoot for now.

7. I had too many lapses

There are those times that you're on plan - eating perfectly, working out on schedule, etc. and times you are not on plan at all. When I was on Weight Watchers, I saved my weekly flex points for my "cheats" - sometimes I wouldn't even really count, I would just "use them" at one meal a week. That worked for a time, until it stopped working. I was eating more calories than my deficit for the entire week, which equals no weight loss.

How I've changed this: By working to hit a daily goal, I no longer have "cheat meals" which can quickly get out of control. I do incorporate anything and everything I want to eat. Sometimes, those indulgences push me over my goal, but because I'm tracking and practicing some restraint, they don't end up being so major that they negate an entire week of being on track.

8. I demanded perfection

I have a history of abandoning a goal when I don't meet my own expectations. I miss a workout in New Rules of Lifting for Women, and I have to start over. I have a little slice of cake at a birthday party so I might as well have pizza for dinner. On a related note, I used to deprive myself certain foods, promising myself that when I hit my goal, I would be able to eat them. Is it any wonder how I gained all the weight back?

How I've changed this: First of all, I'm cutting myself slack. I know, easier said than done. But I'm focusing on done is better than perfect, which isn't entirely accurate because being healthy is never "done" but I don't beat myself up for little slips, nor do I dwell on the effect those slips will have on my overall progress. Quitting does not help overall progress, so I just keep going.

Next, I found Flexible Dieting. As long as I hit protein and fat minimums and stay close to my calorie goal, I don't stress over what I eat. Of course it's easier to stay under my calories and hit protein and fat targets if I'm eating healthier, but I let myself have anything I want. This works better for me than even the IIFYM (if it fits your macros) plan, because I would go crazy trying to hit specific macro counts, and the more restrictive I have to be, the more I am likely to fall off the wagon. Funny thing, Flexible Dieting is pretty much like Weight Watchers except they focused on too low of fat and did not prioritize protein. And was too low in calories.

Anyway, I hope this helps someone! I have another weigh in tomorrow, but have lost 5.5 pounds in the first three weeks so must be doing something right.

Monday, April 25, 2016

2 Pounds Down

Where the eff is my water weight loss? I know I should be happy I lost at all, 2 pounds is as much as I could hope for. Just hoping that's mostly fat and not water weight because I'd really be screwed calorie wise. HAHAHAHA! But seriously, I should be happy I am so tall because I get calories. I feel bad for some of the smaller girls that have to cut so low. I also haven't really changed the way I eat, just tracking more closely and following macros.

I was thinking a lot about my why. What is my motivation? I'm sad to say that I'm currently only motivated by aesthetics (and getting a whole new wardrobe by being able to fit into clothes I haven't warn in years!), which really isn't the best motivation. I do want to get stronger, but I don't have any goals with that regard. I am healthy, I am active, I can walk and hike and my weight doesn't get in the way of my life. I just hate the way I look. That part might not be so healthy.

In the past, I've had another goal to work toward - when I lost the most weight in the past, I was training for a marathon. I'm not in a place where I am interested in that kind of training right now. I'm not really interested in powerlifting or Olympic lifting at this point - not that I won't in the future, but for one, I'm nowhere close to even lifting a competitive weight right now. This is where I can see why so many think they want to compete! The last thing I want to do is put myself on stage to have my body judged. I can't see any way that would help me with my body image! But I can see why so many think that should be their goal - because they have nothing else to work towards to stay motivated. Some sort of competition would be great, I just don't know what kind.

The biggest motivation I have right now is my 10 year anniversary in 17 months. The plan is to go to Mexico for our vow renewal. I would love to 1. Wear my dress again (30 pounds away) and 2. Look AMAZING in my dress, which I didn't really do the first time around. Plus, it's Mexico. It would be nice to actually take photos of the vacation and have wedding photos that I really like the way I look.



Saturday, April 23, 2016

Stupid Fitness Gadgets I Must Have

So, there's a race going on. A race to see who will come out with the first and/or best body imaging tool.

Naked 3D versus Shape Scale

The premise is just about the same for each but Naked has an easier to embed video and more information available.

 

Unfortunately Naked isn't shipping until March 2017 and nobody knows when the Shape Scale is coming out ::sob:: My ass needs this NOW!
 
 
 

Wednesday, April 20, 2016

Yup. Still a fat ass.

Hi! Remember me?

The best way to describe it is that I'm suffering from analysis paralysis. I do not want to cut my calories and fat to near starvation levels a la Weight Watchers but I'm also desperate to lose some weight. I'm not going to give up eating whole, natural foods, but at the same time, it's not sustainable forever 100% perfectly. I'm trying not to get overwhelmed with tracking. Sometimes it just seems so pointless with all the variables, but obviously, not tracking hasn't helped, since I put another 10 pounds of pure fat on over the winter.

I've been following the New Rules of Lifting for Women program since the beginning of the year with a nice increase in strength, but no change as far as weight or size is concerned. I just added 22 Minute Hard Corps to the plan as well. It's mostly cardio but I can use a quick daily cardio option to try and burn more calories. They claim results in the eight week program. Can't hurt, right?

I'm going to try to stick to a single calorie and macro goal on the daily. My fear is when we go out to eat/I have an event/etc. I'm going to go over my calories by too much. That's one of the reasons Weight Watchers worked so well for me - planned binges/cheats. I'm also not a fan of tracking vegetables, but I need to if I'm going to be counting calories so exactly... Counting calories and macros is a serious pain in the ass, but this is the ass you get when you don't have a stop mechanism and you don't track. What I wouldn't give to be one of those girls that naturally doesn't eat too much.

Thursday, February 25, 2016

Done

How many times will you threaten to leave? Just go. I can't be sad any longer. I'm ready to get on with my life. The roller coaster is exhausting.