Tuesday, December 30, 2014

2014 - A Year in Review

Hard to believe, but this is the last Tuesday weigh in of 2014, and sadly I didn't end the year on a "loser" note.  I gained back another pound this week, making for a 3.2 gain since my low weight on December 16th.  I guess I'm lucky it's not more with the way we've been eating/drinking, or as I so eloquently put it to my husband last night "it's been a sleigh ride into Hell since my birthday."  I credit the fact that despite everything else, I've kept up with my long walks almost daily.  I am trying to just survive these waning days of December when everyone seems determined to shove alcohol or a dessert into my face.  I really wanted to dry out this week until NYE in anticipation of our really special bottle of champagne, but we went to see our friend's new baby last night, and they poured us a glass of wine pretty much when we walked in the door.  I did limit it to one glass because most pinot noirs and my stomach are not a good combo.  I am actually really over drinking, but won't have a problem rallying for champagne tomorrow night.  ;)

I am so very close to my step goal, but it's pretty exhausting.  I pretty much have to get 13,300 steps today and tomorrow in order to hit it.  I took a long walk (4.5 or 5 miles, I accidentally shut my Garmin off so I am not entirely sure!) in the super bitter cold today and was still only at 11,000ish by the time I was done, so I'll have lots of pacing to do in the house today!

We are having a quiet little New Year's Eve here at the house.  Last year we had a super kick ass time with my brother-in-law and his girlfriend in Los Angeles, but opted for an at home NYE this year.  Those are always nice, just being in your jammies and being able to indulge without worrying.  I don't like being out on nights like that anyway, where you know everyone and his brother is drunk driving.  I'm going to get a Dungeness crab since they are in season now and also make shrimp ceviche, so that will actually be pretty healthy!  I'm also making garlic monkey bread, which will NOT be healthy.  ;)  I'm going to make a traditional New Year's lunch with greens, Hoppin' John and cornbread and my aunt/uncle will join us.  It's pretty cold this week, so I'm pretty excited at the thought of a warm bowl of black eyed peas.

Since I will likely not post anything tomorrow because I'll be mad busy, which means this will be my last 2014 post, I thought I'd do a little "year in review".  2014 was not a prolific year for me for me when it came to races or fitness, it was really more of a year with a ton of strife, major life changes and a lot of soul searching.  2015 is going to be a little more of the same (hopefully minus the strife!) since I will be figuring out career options and seeing where all of that takes me.  I just wanted to look back on 2014 and highlight some things that happened.

1.  I ran the Louisiana Half Marathon in January

At the beginning of the year when I was on sabbatical, I planned to go down to Louisiana for 2 weeks to visit my family.  I thought it might be fun to do a race while I was down there, and ended up choosing this one.  This was a somewhat last minute decision but ended up being one of my favorite races that I've ever done.  The course was super awesome, it was really well organized and the spectators were great.  I can't recommend it enough if you can get down there.  But the biggest surprise of all came 2 days before the race when my big brother surprised me and told me that he had signed up and would be running with me!  It was his first race ever, so I was very proud of him for deciding to run it with me since I don't know that the organized races are his thing.  Of course he actually runs all the time and is very fit, so his chubby baby sister slowed him down, but we had a super awesome time filled with a lot of laughs and good conversation during the race.

If you care to read more details, you can read my race recap here.

2.  I ran the Heartbreaker Half in February

I honestly almost forgot that I ran this race, although I shouldn't have because it was memorable on many levels.  It was freaking cold that day, I was plagued by a d-bag fighting couple the entire time, and there were no potties on the course yet I somehow managed to PR.  Sadly Eric was out of town and I didn't have anyone there to see me do it!  I did have a great sushi lunch with my aunt/uncle, plus I decided to be gauche and wear my medal (or as my husband refers to it, "the bling of accomplishment") into a liquor store.  My recap for that race is here.

3.  In April we celebrated one year of Molly joining our family

I can't believe we've had this crazy lady for a whole year!  She has actually become a very sweet girl since we adopted her despite being a little standoffish at first.  It's fun to see the changes in her, fun to have our little routines and even more fun to see how happy she is in our home.  And if you were wondering what kind of people throw birthday parties for their dogs, well...us.  We're those people.

4.  There were tons of professional changes this year

The year actually started off with my poor hubby getting laid off by our company, which made me equal parts relieved and furious.  Luckily he found a new job that is the polar opposite of where we were, and he has a great manager and work environment.  It truly is such a blessing and I am so happy that he finally found the work environment that he deserves.  I finally took the plunge and quit in June after finally having my fill of my health and life being compromised for 9 years.  It's been wonderful and scary all at the same time, (I do miss seeing so many of my coworkers) but the much needed break has put me in the healthiest state I've ever been in.  I am incredibly lucky to be in a position where I could take the time to focus on myself, I know a lot of people don't get that luxury.  If you've been reading this blog for awhile, you know how much the job drained me and sucked the life out of me, so I feel like a whole new person both physically and mentally.  It will be time to go back to the career drawing board in 2015, but I'm ready to face that with confidence.

5.  I ran the Halloweenathon 5k in October

This race was interesting because it was the first one I did since the Heartbreaker in February.  I don't know that it was my fave of all time due to the course, but it was good to get back out there, and of course to add another medal to my count.  ;)  Y'all know how much I love my medals.  You can read my race recap here.

6.  I finally got it together

A lot of it is due to the luxury of having a break from normal commitments and pressures, but I really feel like I turned a huge corner in October with my philosophy on health and fitness.  No more fad programs.  No eliminating foods.  No more guilt.  No more little horseshit excuses.  No more doubting my abilities.  No more selling myself short.  Just make things fun, make things doable, and make myself consistent.  That is probably the theme for 2015...consistency.  The end of 2014 has been great, and I know that next year will be even better.  Instead of saying "I HOPE I can get healthier and slimmer next year", I KNOW I can do it, and I can totally envision getting lighter and lighter, and all of the things that I will accomplish during that process.  I know at some point I will be able to slip on a pair of "normal" jeans next year.  I know I will have more muscle tone and be stronger.  There is no hoping or maybe about it.

Anyway that's really been about it for 2014.  I hope you all have a safe and happy New Year.  If you're indulging in grown up drinks make sure you have a sober driver.  Don't make any Taco Bell runs at midnight.  Make sure you have plenty of water and healthy lunch/breakfast options available when you stumble out of bed on January 1.  Most importantly, be ready to kick ass when you put up your 2015 calendar.  Let's make 2015 THE year.  :)

Sunday, December 28, 2014

January Goals

As this month winds down and we officially look towards 2015, I decided that it was time to finalize my January goal list.  December has been a playground of debauchery, and it's been fun, but I am ready to get back to normal and focus on some new goals.

Overall my goal is to continue dropping pounds (hopefully even hit the 100s?), but moreover to really work on toning up and gaining muscle definition.  I liked what I was seeing with my plank and wall sit challenges, until you know, I stopped doing them lol.  I also want to get back into my good habits with water consumption and being super accurate about tracking in My Fitness Pal.  Both of those have really fallen to the wayside, though I have tracked enough in MFP to keep up with my tracking streak.  But it has definitely not been accurate and complete, because it really got to the point this month that I don't even want to know.  But again, that's got to come to an end because it's not going to get me to where I want to be.

So my workout stuff that I picked is crazy.  I made a nice neat little calendar that has the daily exercises I have to do, and even just looking at it makes me think I should be committed for even coming up with all this craziness.  But at the same time I know I can do it, and I picked things that can be easily split up into various circuits throughout the day, so it's not like it has to be done all at once.  I also have to start training for the Shamrock Run Half Marathon, so I have a very loose running schedule that I put together for myself.  I am honestly not too worried about my pace or any of that stuff anymore, I just want to be physically in good shape and to try to finish in like 3 hours.  With all of that said,  here are all of my January workout goals:

Workout Goals:

The most difficult goal almost will be my step goal.  Anyone who wears a FitBit or Jawbone will tell you that it's tough getting in enough steps a day, so trying to go for 375,000 steps is nuts.  I figured that I will be doing longer runs though, so I might as well make my goal tough and try my best to hit it.

I also have a handful of non-workout related goals:

Non-Fitness Goals:

  • 8 glasses of water per day 
  • Accurate MFP tracking
  • Visit dentist/lady doctor
  • Clean out green room

So I know those last two may be strange, but I feel are important goals for the month.  I have not been to the dentist in a shamefully long time (3 years?), and haven't been to a lady doctor for even longer.  I know, it's bad.  I really hate going to doctors, any doctor really.  My husband can attest that I basically have to be dying before I will step foot in a doctor's office.  But, I really need to get my teeth cleaned, and I need to get lady checkups, so I just have to bite the bullet and do it.  I ain't getting any younger.

If you're like "WTF is a green room", it's our name for our guest bedroom because you guessed it, the walls are painted hunter green.  (It's also been affectionately called "the scary room" on occasion depending how much crap we randomly shove in there.)  I really got inspired to declutter our house at the beginning of this year, really got going and accomplished a lot throughout the house, and then kind of ran out of gas.  I got about halfway done with decluttering the green room and just stopped.  I want to finish cleaning it out and making the room nice.  I also want to repaint it a more neutral color since it's a tiny room, and that dark green was a poor choice on my part.  Painting will have to wait for February goals though!  ;)

Have you guys started thinking about your January goals yet?  What do you want to achieve in both your health and personal lives?  Just remember, no goal is too small!

Saturday, December 27, 2014

Post Christmas

I just wanted to write a quick post to let y'all know I hadn't fallen over dead!

Christmas Eve was crazy since I spent most of the day cooking things to take over to my aunt's house, squeezing in a 2 mile walk, and then doing some prep for our Christmas day dinner.  I was super bummed out because my new-sh Christmas tradition of making pans of cinnamon rolls for Christmas morning for both us and my aunt was a bit of a fail.  I think the yeast I used may not have been viable because the dough wouldn't rise at all, but I just didn't have time to make another batch of dough.  I thought they were super gummy and nasty, but of course my aunt/Eric were nice and said they were good.  I used the Pioneer Woman recipe and I was not impressed, so I think I'll be finding another one for next year!  Anyway after all of that we got cleaned up and went over to my aunt's house to do dinner and go to their church service.  As always my aunt and I were super mature because she pointed out this teenage boy who purposely has a mullet (a hipster type who I'm sure is doing it ironically), and I said that he looked like MacGruber.  She didn't know who that was, so of course I had to pull up a picture on my smart phone right before the service started.


I am going to back up to earlier in the day to show you a picture from our walk on Christmas Eve.  We decided to dress Molly up in her Santa hat/beard to walk her around in, along with some jingle bells.  She was totally pissy about it, but it was worth it to see the smiles on people's faces.  A lot of people came up to hug her or take pictures of her, and once she started getting attention then she didn't seem to mind her outfit so much!

Christmas day was pretty awesome other than the bunk cinnamon rolls.  We did coffee, opened the few gifts we had, made a round of phone calls to family and then started all of our traditional Christmas day TV watching:  Claymation Christmas, SNL's Best of Eddie Murphy, and then Eddie Murphy's Delirious.  In between all of that I fixed and we consumed our prime rib dinner, which was pretty stellar.

Oh and this also happened.

We just had to torture her one last time.  It's my duty as a dog owner.  We're lucky that she's a pretty good sport.

I can't believe that we're a few days away from 2015.  Where did this year go?  Not to sound like my dad, but I feel like time is blowing past me so quickly the older I get.

In full disclosure, all of the eating and fitness goals I had have gone to hell in a handbasket the last 2 weeks.  My 310,000 steps goal for December is still attainable, though barely, so I'm going to really strive to hit that.  I'm pretty confident I can hit it.  The 30 day challenge stuff is definitely a bust, and I might even restart the plank/wall sit challenges for January on top of my other goals.  We'll have to see, it will be a lot to do!  And I am actually looking forward to things calming down and me eating a damn salad!

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Christmas Eve Eve

I thought I was going to have more time to put together a more thoughtful post, but I am running around like a wild woman doing food prep so that I won't be running around like a wild woman tomorrow or on Christmas day!  I'm not going to lie, our Christmas Day meal is not healthy in any way.  I'm making homemade cinnamon rolls for breakfast as well as the sausage cheese balls that are a traditional breakfast in my family.  Our Christmas dinner will be prime rib, which I salivate over and think about all year long, and it's not exactly the healthiest cut of meat, but so worth it.  I'm making Yorkshire puddings with it, and if you don't know what that is, it's basically dough baked in meat drippings.  We are having a salad as the third thing, so at least we'll get fiber in.  ;)  Eric requested my Bailey's Irish Cream cake for dessert, and I cannot refuse my long suffering husband on Christmas of all days!

Speaking of spousey things, I wanted to acknowledge that today is a very special day because it's the 8 year anniversary of my husband and I getting engaged.  It almost didn't happen due to his flight getting cancelled (we were long distance dating at the time) due to really insane storms that year.  He rented a car with three strangers and drove to Portland from Seattle that night just so he could make it in.  And fun fact, my car broke down the very same day when I made what I thought was going to be a 5 minute trip to the bank with my dog Wicket.  Yep, in my pajamas, with no harness for the "girls", with a line of cars behind me, my POS Jetta broke down right there in the bank drive through.  So embarrassing on every level, although Wicket thought it was the greatest thing to ever happen because the bank people kept coming out and giving her biscuits while we waited for a tow truck.  Anyway, we rented a car the next day, he popped the question, and of course I said yes.  This was right after:

I'd do it all over again in a heartbeat honey, except the whole embarrassing white trash, braless incident at the bank.  That definitely needs a do over.

I did get in a 2 mile walk today with Molly, although my hip flexor is screaming at me today after my run yesterday.  I've been at this running thing 3-4 years now, and you'd think I'd learn by now that I should stretch after a run.  Sigh.  It's slightly better this afternoon, but didn't feel fun this morning!

Tonight we're going to see The Nutcracker, and I am very excited!  I love getting dressed up and going to the ballet.  And then after that it's a sprint to Christmas.  I can't believe it's here!  I will try to write tomorrow if I can, although it's going to be pretty busy.  I've got lots of goodies to make, but I am going to try to sneak in a walk or run in between the madness.

If I don't manage to fit in a post tomorrow, I hope everyone has a really wonderful Christmas filled with friends, family and a lot of laughs and memories.  XOXO!!

Monday, December 22, 2014

Bye Bye Blackbird

I don't mean to start this post off on a bummer note, but I wanted to mention how sad I am at the passing of Joe Cocker today.  You guys know how nerdy I get about music, and I would just be remiss to not mention him.  I have a thing for really raspy, gravelly voices (Tom Waits, Screaming Jay Hawkins, etc), and Joe's voice was one of my absolute favorites.  I am probably one of the biggest Beatles fans alive, but I'm going to throw this out there...Joe's cover of "With A Little Help From My Friends" is better than the original Beatles song.  It just is.  Music makes the world a better place, but today the world is slightly darker from losing this great man.  It just really freaking sucks, cancer is a stupid asshole that always has to take down good folks.  Anyway, rest in peace Joe.  Heaven's choir is getting one heck of a member today.

Today was a little bit better and I was a bit more at myself.  Molly and I did our new little routine, which was a mile walk with her, then her getting to chill outin the car while I was running a mile, then a repeat.  I totally wish I'd started doing this sooner, although I honestly wasn't feeling running there for a bit.  I've enjoyed it a bit more since my birthday run last week and feel like I'm in so much better shape than I've ever been.  I am probably 20 to 25 pounds lighter than I was when I did my marathon,  plus I have more leg/core strength from doing strength training, so running feels so much different!   Today was the first time in a very long time that I was able to get into a rhythm, and my splits were almost dead even (they were both 12:17-ish), and my breathing felt great.  It gives me a little more confidence going into training for the Shamrock Run Half next month, and I'm excited at the prospect of getting lighter and seeing what that does for my running.

Food was better today, although my sweet, wonderful mother-in-law sent a box of her homemade candy that she sends us every Christmas, and I am just dying to get into it!  I technically have the calories for it, but I was trying to stay away from it tonight.  Luckily she didn't send a ton of it, because her two tone fudge is the best and I would totally destroy the entire batch if I could!  I wasn't very hungry this morning and just ate one of our Harry & David pears for breakfast.  Once I got home  from my walk/run I made myself a turkey wrap with arugula and tomatoes, then an apple with peanut butter.  Dinner was barbecued pork chops, roasted broccoli and roasted potatoes. All pretty healthy stuff, so I may sneak a square of that fudge anyway.  ;)

It's been interesting since I linked my UP band with my MFP account, although it's just one more thing that UP can bitch at me about.  Now it gives each of my meals a "score", which is kind of annoying so I mostly ignore it.  It does add extra calories that I can eat to my macros, especially if I get 10,000 or more steps, but I still try to stay within 1,400 calories a day if I can.

That's really about all I had for now.  I would have posted a Christmas song  tonight, but I wanted to post one of my favorite Joe Cocker songs instead.  Hope everyone enjoys.

Sunday, December 21, 2014

Lazy Sunday

So today has been a lot like this....

At least that picture was taken in the car after we'd finished up a 2 mile walk for Molly and a one mile run for me, but other than that today has been pretty darn lazy.  Eric and I are exhausted after this weekend, there is just a lot going on and everyone wanting to get together with us.  We ended up going to Kachka AGAIN last night with some friends who had never been there and were really wanting to try it.  I certainly will never turn down Kachka!

Today I just haven't felt well, I feel like I have been fighting some kind of weird cold for the last month or something.  Last night I coughed up phlegm that had blood in it (sorry, I know that's gross), but it's the kind of thing that happens when my sinuses are infected.  Then all day today I've been phlegmy.  I'm just so exhausted, but I wanted to get out and do a walk today just so I didn't feel like an absolute loser.  We've been eating so much lately and I haven't "earned" any of that deliciousness with proper workouts.  After I came back home though I collapsed on the couch and have watched football all day, though that hasn't made me feel any better.  The Saints took a total crap, although that's honestly like a mercy killing at this point since I wasn't wanting to watch them blow the playoffs!  As I'm typing this the Bills just lost to the lowly Raiders of all teams, so there go both of my football teams for playoffs.  Blah.

Not really much else to report, other than next week is going to be a bit busy with Christmas insanity.  I am going to have to really hustle to hit my step goal for December, so I'm going to really hop to it tomorrow and Tuesday, since Wednesday/Thursday will be questionable as far as me getting steps in with all the Christmas hoo ha going on.  I've pretty much crapped out on the 30 day challenge stuff this week, but I am just going to pick up on it tomorrow and finish the month out strong.

Christmas Advent Day 21 - "Blue Christmas" by Tom Keifer

Another metal version of a classic, courtesy of the lead singer of Cinderella.  ;)


Friday, December 19, 2014

The Long December

Sorry that I have slacked on the blogging this week, we've just been super busy and I wasn't exactly setting the world on fire with my eating or exercising.  We've also been dealing with a health issue with Molly.  Long story short, she's had this weird condition since we adopted her and we're not sure what it is.  She has what we call "spells" where she will make up from a dead sleep and be completely frightened and disoriented.  Her pupils are dilated, her muscles get really tense, and she paces the house and touches the walls with her nose as if she's trying to orient herself to where she is.  Sometimes she seems to not know who we are.  She also acts frightened of doing things like jumping up on the couch, going up stairs or stepping down into the backyard as though she has no depth perception.  We've had a million tests run on the dog and no one can really figure it out.  The vet thought she had diagnosed it as a high blood pressure thing, so she is on medication.  It helped initially but she still gets these spells every 4-6 months, has them a few nights (they only happen at night), and then they just as mysteriously stop and she won't have them for another 4 months.  Short of spending thousands of dollars that we don't have doing brain scans/tests, I don't know that we're ever going to know exactly what is going on.  The only thing that helps is to force her to stay on her bed next to one of us on the couch, and hold/pet her until she comes out of it.  Sometimes it's 10 minutes, sometimes it's an hour.  Anyways, that has been going on since my birthday (the last time was in May), so it's stressed me out a bit.  I haven't been sleeping well because I worry that she's having a spell in the middle of the night and is down here alone and scared, so I've been jumping awake at 4:30 come down and check on her.

I'll be honest, I'm kind of ready for December to move along.  I feel terrible even saying it because usually it's my favorite month, but we've been so busy that I'm just kind of ready to slow down.  Every time I turn around there's somewhere we've got to be, usually with a ton of food and alcohol at the destination.  I've gotten to where booze is kind of a burden.  Or as my grandmother would say, "I love it, but it doesn't love me."  Every time I drink lately I sleep terribly, have nightmares, and feel dehydrated and awful the next day.  Even if I make a point to drink enough water before and during, I still wake up with a headache and feel parched.  I think a lot of it is a frequency of which we're drinking.  It's just how December rolls, we start off with Ale Fest, my birthday is in the middle of the month and then we get invited to a million parties and get togethers in between.  When I have a glass of wine or a beer a couple times a month it's not an issue, but this 2-3 times a week business sucks.  I also notice my body looks more puffy.  We are going to a party tonight but I think I'm going to lay off the drinking.

I've been awful about drinking water and have definitely slacked off on my food and exercise.  I've been doing lots of dumb stuff like eating breakfast super late (or not at all), which makes me so hungry for the rest of the day, and then I just eat crap.  And of course I haven't been hitting the exercise very hard, which also somehow makes me hungrier!  Not drinking enough water also really affects my hunger levels.  I've been eating more at a 20/80 healthy/splurge ratio than at an 80/20 the way I should be.  I am still tracking all of my food and am on a 68 day streak, but I'm sure I've missed items this week so I don't know that the tracking has been accurate.

On a positive note, I did get up and at em and do a 4 mile walk today, and I've also figured out a solution on how I can take Molly with me and still get in a longer distance.  I've struggled with this the last few months, because Molly simply can't go longer than 2 miles and she's slow as hell, yet I could (and should) probably walk 10 miles.  I feel guilty if I don't take her with me, plus she's a total brat for the rest of the day if she doesn't get a walk, but she honestly kind of holds me back.  On my birthday I walked with her a mile, put her in the car and ran a mile, then got her out of the car and walked a half mile with her, then put her back in the car and ran my last mile.  It worked out perfectly because that way she got to have a walk and I still got to achieve my goal.  This morning I had to give her this month's dose of heartworm preventative, which always makes her tired and a little "off", but she was still insisting on going with me.  Straight away I could tell she wasn't enjoying the walk at all and wasn't feeling good.  We had done about a mile and a half when she just straight up stopped walking and was looking up at me very pitifully, so I took her back to the car.  I walked another mile loop, and when I passed by the car she looked anxious, so I got her back out.  The 20 minute break seemed to have been what she needed, because she was a lot more energetic, so I took her on another mile loop.  She was definitely pooped after that, so I put her back in the car and did a little more walking until I'd reached 4 miles.  I'm pretty happy that I've found a solution that will allow me to do more distance, or at least until the weather is warmer since I won't want to leave her in the car when it's hot.

I also linked my UP band with MFP last night just to see if it makes a difference in my calorie numbers, and if the steps I'm getting in are the reason I'm losing as much weight as I'm losing per week.  Again, not complaining, I guess I've been reluctant to overestimate how many calories I burn, so it will be interesting to see what happens now that these two devices can "talk" to each other.  MFP says that I've burned 300 calories already today with my steps, so we'll see!

Musical Advent Day 19 - "Little Saint Nick" by The Beach Boys

I know I've skipped a few days on this, but I'm making up for it with one of my top 5 favorite Christmas songs of all time.  I am one of those people who is gaga about The Beach Boys, so I can't get enough of this song.  Speaking of Beach Boys, does anyone remember that episode of Full House that had The Beach Boys on it, and Uncle Jesse sings with them?  Hot.  Anyways.  Here you go.

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Thirty Five

So I didn't want to make too much hoo-hah about this, but today is my 35th birthday.  It's been a truly awesome day and I feel super blessed with all the wonderful people I have in my life.  I honestly still consider myself like 16 years old in my head (and totally act 12), so turning 35 doesn't bother me really, in fact it doesn't even seem possible!  Instead of writing a bunch of blatibly blah about the day, I though I'd post pictures of all the good things that happened today.

1.  I got tickets to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Induction in April!  The process went super smoothly, and was stress free!  Cleveland here I come!

2.  I went on a 3.5 run walk/run this morning in honor of turning 35.  My sweet Molly girl did 1.5 miles of it with me.  My feet feel great and I actually really enjoyed my run this time.

3.  My husband got me one of my favorite desserts in the entire world, a Chocolate Salty Dog Cake!

4.  We went to see the final Hobbit movie!  The last Lord of the Rings opened on my birthday 11 (?) years ago, and now the last Hobbit movie is opening today.  I feel like I would be breaking some kind of nerd law if I didn't go!  It was pretty good!

5.  Then I came home to snuggle Molly to console her over the trauma of us being gone a couple of hours.

6.  And now I'm off to snuggle my husband for being amazing and helping me have such a great day!

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Rock Hall Class of 2015

Guys are you prepared to nerd out with me for a second?  The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame 2015 class was announced this morning and I am SO excited!!!  The official class is:

-Green Day
-Bill Withers
-Stevie Ray Vaughan & Double Trouble
-Joan Jett & the Blackhearts
-The Paul Butterfield Blues Band
-Lou Reed

I am really excited about this class with the exception of Green Day, who honestly shouldn't be anywhere near the word "punk" when you compare them to real punk bands like Black Flag, but I digress.  The big excitement/sigh of relief for me is SRV, who is one of the greatest musicians EVER, and Joan Jett.  A lot of people forget about Joan being in The Runaways, which talk about a pioneering band.  Always amazing to see a female rocker get her due in the boys club.  Bill Withers makes me happy too.  I am not anti-Lou Reed per say (even though I don't get the rabidness about him), but he is already in with Velvet Underground so I kind of feel like he's taking precious ballot space from other people.  Ah well, nothing to be done about it now.  Ringo Starr is also getting in with some other award they are giving out, which makes me so happy!!  I adore Ringo, and it was criminal that one of the Beatles wasn't already in the Rock Hall!  I am glad they are putting the Paul Butterfield Blues Band so that the nomination committee can quit having a huge boner about them and putting them on the ballot EVERY year.

Tomorrow is going to be intense because the tickets for the ceremony go on sale, and I will be in charge of buying them.  Me attempting to buy concert tickets is always...interesting, and usually no one wants to be in a 5 mile radius of me when that's happening.  My anxiety gets to be at an all time high and there are sometimes tears involved, especially when Ticketmaster is thrown in the mix as it will be tomorrow.  Let's all cross our fingers that the fates will be nice to me tomorrow so that I can snag a couple tickets to this thing.

Okay, thank you for indulging me again, although you're going to have yet another post tomorrow about me trying to buy tickets to the ceremony.  ;)

To continue the exciting news for the day, I hopped on the scale this morning and lost 2.6 pounds and was down to 211.6!  Obviously I am happy, but I am trying to figure out what's up.  I think I may be underestimating how many calories I burn.  I actually don't enter my Stomach Formula or any of the plank/wall sit stuff into MFP, but I highly doubt that stuff is causing a ton of calorie burn.  I do take a moderate amount of steps per day, but my Jawbone really overestimates calorie burn, so I don't think that's it.  Clearly something is off because I know I am eating plenty of calories.  I guess I'm not terribly worried about it since I feel good and have plenty of energy, so it's not like I'm undereating and weak, I guess I'm just concerned about losing too much weight too fast.

Today is going to be a bit crazy again, I have a haircut, have to make a couple of casseroles, and then we have to jump on the freeway to go have dinner at a friend's house.  I'm actually going to wrap this up so that I can get to stepping on all the things I need to do!

Musical Advent Day 16 - "Little Drummer Boy" by Joan Jett

In honor of the beautiful and talented Joan Jett finally getting her due and being inducted into the Rock Hall, here's her cover of "Little Drummer Boy".

Monday, December 15, 2014

Doctor Freeze

Yesterday was on point for me and I feel like I am totally back on track.  I really do think the shopping frustration last week and my TOM hormones just made me lose my mind for the week.  Freaking hormones man, I looked in the mirror this morning and my stomach was so flat (well, flat for me) and my face looked slim again.  My mind feels calm and focused again, and I don't feel crazy.  Well at least until next month at the same time.  ;)

Speaking of next month,  I started putting together my fitness goals for January.  I like the idea of doing stuff for 30 days and going on to the next thing and continuing to mix things up.  I wanted to go ahead and put some thought into what I wanted to do and accomplish.  I think I picked some good things, a squat challenge, a plank with a leg lift challenge and dumbbell challenge.  I'm also going to start adding running to the mix because I realized that I have the Shamrock Half in March!  It's like oh yeah, guess I should train for that.  I didn't use an official training plan, I just put together some mileage that sounds right to me.  I'm pretty excited about everything I put together, I really like the results I'm getting from adding even a tiny bit of strength training to my routine, so I really want to do more.  I also like that I've figured out tons of options to where 1) I will never have to enter a gym again and 2) won't have an excuse in the summer since I now have routines that can be done indoors!

I also spent some time yesterday researching ideas for freezer meals.  One of my goals for the rest of this month and next is to really put some effort into making a lot of frozen meals and stashing them in our drop freezer.  I did a little bit of that when I was on my sabbatical at the beginning of the year and it really did make life easier, or at least it did until I ran out of meals lol.  I will admit that Pinterest has been pretty helpful in getting ideas for freezer meals, in fact I found a great site that has ideas for crockpot recipes where you assemble all of the ingredients in bags, freeze them, and then just dump them in the crockpot whenever you intend to cook it!  I spent all day today putting together the meals and stashing them in the freezer.  I did take a break to eat lunch and watch Bold and the Beautiful educational programming, but other than that I was a busy bee!  All the ladies on these sites were bragging that it took them only 2 hours to assemble the meals, but it took me closer to 4 hours.  Admittedly I started out with a messy kitchen and didn't organize myself before I started, which is what took me so long to put all the bags together.  I also did a variety of recipes, but I'm sure if I'd focused on 1 or 2 recipes it would have been faster.  Next time I'm going to do the shopping and vegetable prep one day and then assembly the next day.

Stack o' Meals
Used a pitcher to put the bags in when filling so they didn't tip over.
I am super proud of how many meals I was able to make though, I ended up making 13 bags of a variety of meals!  Definitely made me feel like I'd accomplished something today.  Each bag is 4-6 servings, so that is a crapload of dinners!  And all I'll have to do is pick a bag and dump it in my slow cooker, which sounds really lovely to me.  I was pleasantly surprised when I was entering the recipes in My Fitness Pal yesterday, all of the meals ranged from 250-430ish calories a serving.  That's really pretty good.  Most of them have a lot of vegetables and grains in them, so they're pretty healthy.  This is the site I used (link here) if you are interested.  I know a lot of us are busy folks, but if you have a couple of hours to invest this is definitely worth it. I'm going to make some more meals tomorrow, so I'll have to keep you posted on what else I make!

Due to the meal factory I had going, I wasn't able to squeeze in Richard today (that sounded awful).  I did 7,300 steps so far just from being in the kitchen all day!  I'm taking a little bit of a breather and then am going to do my challenge stuff and my Stomach Formula.  And then I may collapse into a coma, because I am SO tired lol.

Today's Activities:

90 second plank
150 second wall sit (these are starting to majorly suck)
Stomach Formula Day 1

Today's Menu:

Breakfast:  Berry and cranberry protein smoothie
Lunch:  Pimento cheese, Dr. Kracker flatbread, pear
Dinner:  Cabbage casserole (Runs For Cookies recipe) and Rice
Snack:  Popcorn with nutritional yeast

Musical Advent Day 15 - "God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen/We Three Kings" by Barenaked Ladies

So I really love Barenaked Ladies, and I love both of those Christmas songs, so having them meshed together in a trio of amazingness is really more than anyone could ask for.  What I do not love is that Sarah McLachlan is in the track, not because I think she has a bad voice, but because she will forever be the lady who brought us the 45 minute really sad "Arms of the Angel" ASPCA commercial.  I mean seriously, I have pulled muscles diving for the remote to change the channel  whenever that thing comes on it because makes me so upset.  I love animals more than people 97% of the time, and I'm all for helping homeless and abused animals but good lord.  Anyway, this is a really great track and at least there are no sad, shivering animals on the video, so enjoy.

Sunday, December 14, 2014

Over It

I feel so much better mentally this morning, despite getting a horrible night's sleep!  I woke up feeling more like my determined self (or at least the self that's been around since October) and did two very important things.  I weighed myself to see where I was at, and I also decided to just get the f**k over myself.  Wallowing and being sad about looking fat, and then eating or drinking too much to make myself feel "better" is just going to make me lose progress.  It does seem ridiculous to be sad about looking fat and then do something that's going to MAKE me fat instead of going the opposite direction and working on continuing to slim down.  Clearly I have done well with that so far, so I just have to keep doing what I was doing, and eventually I'll look the way I want.  Eating isn't going to make these godforsaken boobs or my stomach go away, but eating right and exercising will.  So I guess that's that.  I may avoid shopping for maybe another 10-15 pounds or so, I honestly feel that's what put me in such a state in the first place.

I was expecting the worst when I stepped on the scale this morning, but I am only up a little bit from where I was last week.  I think it was important to see that I haven't done some sort of long term damage, and to realize that if I just right course ASAP that I will be at my weight from last week or may even be slightly down by Tuesday.  This is probably the quickest I have ever course corrected, it usually takes me months!  I am trying to find these small points of pride where I can

One thing I've continued in all of this mess are my 30 day challenges, so at least I am on track for completing those for December.  I've not done my Stomach Formula stuff since Wednesday, and I am just going to reboot the program tomorrow.  I'm also going to incorporate my aerobics and yoga back into my routine and make that priority.  I am happy to report that my foot is at about 98%, so I am eager to get back to doing the exercises that make me happy, especially since that will help me burn more calories, which means I get to eat more snacks.  ;)  I am going to try to run 3.5 miles on Wednesday, so we'll see how that goes.  It will be the first time I've run since early November.  I'm slightly lighter now and have better leg/core strength, so maybe I won't hate it as much?

We had a really lovely evening yesterday.  My uncle is in a singing group and they performed yesterday at a church, so we went to catch the first performance before going out to dinner.  My aunt of course was there, along with my uncle's parents.  The performances were good, and my uncle even had a solo.  I'm not sure that I'd ever heard him sing a solo, so hearing him was great!  He did a beautiful job.  There was one sort of comedic aspect, this really elderly lady in the back of the church kept talking in between songs when it was super quiet and reverent, and my aunt and I were seriously about to die.  This lady had no filter or volume control, a song would end, there would be a 2 second silence and then you'd hear loud things like "I've had this Norwegian sing stuck in my head all week!" or "I really didn't sleep that well last night."  Whoever was with her kept shushing her, but this lady was not going to be shushed.  It got to where we anticipated her random statements between songs, and my aunt and I would jab each other in the ribs and try our best to not laugh because we are super mature.  It's the type of old lady I want to be, where you can just lay it out there and not give two hoots.  Between the talking memaw and the Christmas music, I felt cheered up by the time we left and headed out to Kachka.

Kachka was lovely yet again and all of the food we had last night was great.  The food there is actually relatively healthy due to all the vegetables, so all of our appetizer type stuff was pretty good for us.  We got boiled eggs stuffed with beets and walnuts (sounds weird but they were good!), peppers stuffed with ground walnuts, the pickled vegetable plate and the pelmeni (dumplings with beef/veal).  We wanted a little more food so we split the chicken kiev.  Not healthy in the least, but it was so tasty!  It came with this really nice buckwheat pilaf type stuff that had hazelnuts in it.  Afterwards we got dessert and I had a Russian black currant tea.  I got the same thing I always get which are the sirniki, a cheese pancake that typically has sour cream and lingonberries on top.  I was slightly disappointed because they swapped the lingonberries for pomegranate seeds, which I don't care for really and they certainly don't taste as good as lingonberries.  The tea was heavenly though!  Kachka is run by a married couple and they are both totally awesome and very involved in everything. When we sat down the husband brought us tiny glasses of Russian champagne and wished me a happy birthday (it's not till Wednesday for the record, but we decided to just do all the main celebrating over the weekend).  Super classy and a nice touch.  Then when they brought me my dessert they had put a little candle on it.  Afterwards the owner guy stopped by the table and told me he was honored to be part of my special day, etc. Of course I'd had a ton of vodka by then so I totally fangirled him and babbled on about how much I loved Kachka!  They are so nice though, seriously.  Ultimately a huge thanks to my hubby for such a nice evening.  :)

Christmas Advent Day 14 - "Santa Claus Wants Some Lovin'" by Albert King

Just thought I'd interject some cool into the day with a blues Christmas song.  :)

Saturday, December 13, 2014


I am so stoked for tonight because we're going to one of my favorite restaurants in the world, Kachka.  If any of you ever make it out to Portland and are adventurous about food, then you must go.  It is very, very Russian and some of the best food I've ever had.  I love when you go into a restaurant, immediately forget what city you're in and feel transported into another place.  Whenever we go into Kachka (which I think this will only be the 4th time?), I feel like I pulled a Hogwarts and entered some secret door that took me into the Soviet Union.  I don't know why I am so fascinated by Russian culture or where that came from, but I have been for most of my life.  I'd really love to go there although I know that might be an intense thing, but for now Kachka is the next best thing.  I'll have to post tons of pictures tomorrow.

We've been taking it pretty easy today, although we did take Molly for a 2 mile walk and I did my wall sit challenge, which was the only challenge on the calendar for today.  I've really continued to struggle mentally with body image this week, and today was no different.  I tried on pretty much every shirt in my closet this afternoon to put together a suitable outfit, and every time I looked in the mirror I thought my anxiety was going to go through the roof.  It's difficult to explain the inner monologue, but it usually goes something like this:  "Oh Jesus, look at this, now I look pregnant.  Maybe if I put on this shirt...no, now my boobs look disgusting and huge.  Maybe these pants will balance it out...no now everyone can see how gross my stomach is."  So on and so forth.  That has been my battle all week, getting dressed is like literally going to war with myself.  It's confusing to feel so positive and confident one week, but then feel so awful the next especially when there is no "reason".  It's completely mental/hormonal.  I gave into it last night and ate a ton of food from this great Greek place by our house and drank a couple glasses of wine.  Because you know, drinking a depressant always helps being depressed right?  

I am still proud of myself for tracking all of the crappy food I ate (I literally accidentally typed "hate" instead of ate at first...freudian slip much?) in MFP.  I don't know why out of all the other good habits I dropped this week why I feel so determined to continue tracking and keep my now 62 day streak going.  But at least I kept it and am still seeing the honest truth of how bad it's been.  I do feel like I am somewhat pulling out of this funk and can just get back into tomorrow.  I am going to enjoy Kachka tonight and then wake up with my head on straight tomorrow and quit wallowing.

To end on a silly note, Eric and I were kvetching the other night that we never get any type of gift basket stuff, even though we send a ton of it as gifts.  I know, it's the stupid first world problem stuff that we married people sometimes kvetch about.  Anyways we finally decided to just order a gift basket for ourselves lol.  We ordered a thing of the fancy pants Royal Riviera pears from Harry and David because they were having a sale plus a free shipping deal, and just got them in yesterday.

I usually don't go gaga for pears, but I have to say these are awesome!  They are super sweet and floral.  I had one for breakfast this morning and really enjoyed it.  At least I know what it's like to get something from Harry and David now.  ;)

Christmas Advent Day 13 - "Run Run Rudolph" by Chuck Berry

Chuck Berry is one of my favorite artists EVER!  Nothing really more to say than that.

Friday, December 12, 2014

In The Dark

So yesterday I had a lovely post written up, was going to put some finishing touches on it in the evening and then post it after dinner.  Then zap, we had no power.

So our weather people tend to be a bunch of ninnies who like to quiver and freak out at the least little thing.  It's almost embarrassing how afraid they are of snow, to the point where they will preempt TV for hours and all stand around in a perfectly dry area reporting about how it MAY snow.  If we had an event like the one in Buffalo where it snowed 7 feet, I honestly don't know what the hell they or the residents of Portland would do.  Anyway, the weather people were flipping out that we were going to get a terrible windstorm, that it was going to be the storm of the century, and to basically just take a cyanide pill because none of us were going to make it out alive anyways.  (Okay, I made that last part up, but you get my drift.)  I took the reports with a grain of salt since their track record of being accurate isn't the greatest, and since it was pretty with blue sky all day yesterday.  As afternoon rolled in, the wind suddenly started picking up and all hell broke loose!  Luckily Eric was able to make it home from work just as it really got bad, apparently the roads got super nasty in our area with a ton of downed trees and that kind of thing.  We were remarking on our good luck and I was putting a pan of ginger cookies in the oven when bam, the power went out.

Nothing will bring your unpreparedness to attention like a power outage.  I realized my phone was close to dead, that I had thrown out most of our candles and that we only have one flashlight.  We were luckier than a lot of my friends, I had been reheating our dinner all day in the crockpot (pot roast with pepperocini peppers) when the power went out so at least we had a hot dinner even though I wasn't able to make rice to go with it!

After going through roughly a million hurricane induced evenings like this growing up as a kid in Louisiana, having the lights out was annoying but not the end of the world.  We lit the 2 stubby candles we had, played blackjack and drank wine for most of the evening.  We also pulled out this battery operated/hand cranked radio that my father-in-law gave us when we first got married.  At the time we laughed about it, but it is actually pretty neat!  It even has a USB in the back so that you can charge your phone.  We tried to find news about the weather, but eventually gave up and just found a station with the NFL game and listened to that while we played cards.  It wasn't all an old timey evening, I did use some of my phone's battery power to tweet our power company to report the outage, and they tweeted me back that they had us already reported.  Ah the internet.  :)

On a kind of bummer note, but just for the sake of honesty, I've not had that great of a week for food/fitness.  I've discovered what I've really known for years, that exercise is the key to success for me and that without it everything falls by the wayside.  I took things easy this week to try to heal my foot, which thankfully has gotten better, but it's had worse repercussions than the actual foot injury.  I've not only felt very depressed, but I've not eaten well at all.  Not that I'm a doctor, but I honestly believe that exercise causes such a lift in my mood and elevates whatever good chemicals are floating around in the body that I don't feel the need to snack or binge.  I'm content eating one treat or extra thing and then can go on my way.  When I'm not exercising I fall and fall fast.  I made treats for Eric's office yesterday, one of the things being ginger cookies.  I love ginger cookies and had a few leftover here at the house today.  A month ago I would have been fine having those in the house, have done all my exercise routines for the day and have looked forward to earning ONE cookie with a hot cup of tea after dinner.  Today I scarfed a ton of them down for lunch, even though consuming that much sugar made me feel gross.

My foot is definitely less painful, so I'm just going to go back to doing a ton of exercise every day.  With my 30 day challenges and the foot thing, I've backed off my aerobics stuff, but I'm going to go back to making those priority.

Musical Advent Day 12 - "Rock You Hard This Christmas" by The Dan Band

I really debated about posting this song.  Nothing about it is right.  It's super inappropriate in every way, but of course it's exactly the reason I love it.  I can't go a single Christmas without listening to it at least 5 times.  This version of the video I posted is bleeped, but I still wouldn't blast it at work.  If language or crudeness offends you, I ask that you 1) forgive me and 2) don't listen to the song.

So if you are a fan of the movie Old School, you will recognize the Dan Band as the wedding band who sings "Total Eclipse of the Heart".  I think they were at the end of the first Hangover movie too, as wedding singers.  I fell in love with them in Old School, and realized they are an actual band who tours, singing traditionally female pop songs with dirty words thrown in.  I have the sophistication and humor of a 12 year old boy, so of course I love it.  One of the first things Eric and I went to after he moved up here was to a Dan Band concert, and I seriously laughed so hard that I had a headache afterwards.

Anyway, if you also have a super inapprope sense of humor, I think you'll like this.

Wednesday, December 10, 2014


To start off, huge thanks to the person who commented yesterday saying that they were surprised when I listed my weight because I already look like I'm in the 100s!  Definitely made me feel good to read that because I was still having all kinds of anxiety last night about feeling like I look no different than I did 2 years ago.  That is not true, but even this morning I was looking at pictures from last night and feeling like I look the same, aka fat.  So yes, I am tall (5 foot 8), and yes I am very strategic about how I take pictures of myself, not that I allow many of myself to be taken.  If there is an illusion that I look smaller than the weight I posted yesterday, that's why.  There are very few full length pics of me because I am extremely self conscious about how top heavy I am, so I mostly take selfies.

With all that said, I did take a full length photo of my blasted outfit from last night:

I felt cute until I got my picture taken, I feel like my middle looks so roly poly and I don't even want to get into how badly I want a reduction.  I know I sound crazy, but it's just what happens to me during my TOM, it makes my brain crazy and makes me feel insanely fat and like nothing fits right.  I felt like 245 pounds again when I saw these pics even though that's obviously not the case.  I literally had to put a picture of me at 245 next to this picture for my brain to acknowledge that yes, I am thinner.  At least next week I'll be back to feeling thinner again.  I'm not trying to fish for compliments or any of that crap, just trying to keep it all real with the body image stuff.

The party was fun for the most part, it's a little nerve wracking to go to a party where you basically only know your spouse!  I get nervous and shy in front of strangers, plus I wanted to make a good impression since we were at the CEO's house!  Everyone from Eric's office is super nice though and very friendly.  We did get the "so are you guys having kids" question, which always gets my hackles up a bit.  I know people mean well, they're not doing it to be jerks. I just kind of wish people could find another question to ask married people because it's kind of cliche, and plus you never know what someone's situation is.  We're choosing to not have kids, but someone could very well be struggling with wanting them but not being able to have them.  Anyway.  I'm sure we always throw people with our, "no we have a dog" answer lol.  Considering she does things like cough out an entire throatful of kibble she's choking on because she eats too fast, and almost does it on your new party shoes, it's similar enough to children.  After that Eric's buddy at work showed up, so the 3 of us hid in a corner and talked about sci fi movies for the rest of the party.

The food situation was interesting, the CEO had the party catered so there was actual food along with appetizer type stuff.  I took tiny portions of everything because I am also very nervous about eating in front of a bunch of people like that.  I took a salmon cake, grilled asparagus, a tiny bit of pasta alfredo, a bit of salad and a piece of bread.  It was all pretty decent (could have done without the salmon cake frankly), but I didn't feel like I got enough food.  We did park ourselves in front of the dessert bar and sampled a few things.  There was one thing that reminded me of homemade heavenly hash candy, it was super tasty.  I also had 2 small glasses of white wine.  I kind of wish I hadn't had my peanut butter snack again yesterday, I went over my calories by like 300.  I hope my foot heals soon so that I can get back to doing multiple workouts a day so that I can eat more without stressing about it!!

My challenge stuff is still going well, although those wall sits are starting to get brutal!  There are no rest days on those, so the seconds go up by 10 every single day.  Today will be a minute and 40 seconds, not looking forward to that!  The planks are getting more intense, I'm up to 60 seconds now and definitely shaking.  I do love that my core is so much stronger, I can feel how much better my form is than in years past when I didn't do any ab work at all.  That Richard, improving my life all the time.

Musical Advent Day 10 - "Let It Snow" by Dean Martin

I am a huge Rat Pack fan, but Dean Martin is by far my favorite "rat".  Super complicated guy in real life, but I love his voice and there is a playfulness to his music that is so endearing.  This one is one of my favorites.

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Attention Shoppers

So it happened again, and I'm not sure how.  I stepped on the scale and had lost weight this morning.  I literally weighed myself 3 times because I was like, no way did this happen.  But it did.  I lost 1.8 pounds.  I am trying to figure out if I'm lucky, or if I'm struggling with mental crap where I've convinced myself that no way in all get out could I continue to be successful.  I guess I am so worried about failing or being complacent that I'm always doing that to myself, but seriously it does blow my mind that I had that big of a loss.  Maybe I am overestimating my calories?  The one thing I'm doing that I never have really done in the past is the strength training, which apparently seems to be working for me!  I guess I won't look a gift horse in the mouth.

I know I've not really put my actual weight numbers out there for these weigh ins, mostly because it makes me want to hyperventilate since people I know read this blog.  But screw it I guess, I'm going to start putting the actual numbers out there.  It's not like it's a secret that I'm a big girl, everyone knows what I look like, but at least I'm less of a big girl.  When I rebooted myself in earnest on October 13, I weighed 227.6 pounds.  As of today I weigh 214.2.  So I guess that's out there now and we can all get on with our lives.  That's a loss of 13.4 pounds since October.  I am also well past the weight I was always "stuck" at, which was 218, which has been really huge for my confidence.  Another 15 pounds will put me in the 100's, which is pretty exciting.

So I'm about to launch into a post about clothes shopping.  If there are any male readers, you can hop off the post, it won't hurt my feelings.

Yesterday I did something you should NEVER do when you are hungry and when you are beginning your TOM, and that's go shopping.  Seriously ladies, don't do that.  It all began simply enough, Macy's was having a sale and I also got coupons in the paper that would have gotten me additional savings.  I am really not confident about that green sweater that I bought the other day, I just feel like it shows every lump and fat roll even though it's an XL.  Eric's work Christmas party is tonight and I want to look put together and classy, not like Kim Kardashian trying to squeeze the fatness into a shirt the size of a sausage casing.  So I was like hey, I could get a nice top to go with those black pants, yada yada.  I also needed shoes to go with the pants since I don't own heels anymore.  I ended up going around lunchtime, which was not good, but I honestly thought I wasn't going to be long.  Long story short, I was at Macy's for over an hour and came out empty handed.  So I have big "assets" to begin with, and with my TOM I'm extra puffy.  When you combine that with the fact that designers only make shirts for girls with no rack, let's just say my shopping experience had me so angry by the end that I just left.  I'm not even kidding, I don't get it, all you see in the media are women with huge boobs and it's all anyone can talk about, so why are shirts ONLY made for women with tiny boobs?  And I'm not putting down anyone with small boobs, trust me, I would trade places with you in a heart beat and then maybe I could find a freaking shirt once in awhile.

Then I went to Kohl's and had another irritating trip, though at least I came out with one top even though I'm not totally in love with it and might return it.  It's white, which I don't know is the best color for me since I have the grace of Godzilla stomping through Japan, so there may be danger of me spilling something on it before I'm even out of the door.  It's a pretty top, but it's almost too big, and I don't need things that are on the verge of not fitting.   I did get shoes, though that's another whole battle.  Dress shoes seem to come in two styles these days:  $2 hooker or sensible grandmother.  When I hurt my foot a few years ago I stopped wearing high heels with tiny pointed toes and went to minimalist shoes.  Not only can I not tolerate a lot of the styles now, but when I went to minimalist shoes with wider toe boxes, my feet went from a size 9 to a 10, sometimes a 10.5.  It's frightening that I was crunching my feet that much over the years.  My jaw was dropping at some of the heel heights yesterday.  I mean, are ladies prancing around in 6 inch heels the width of a kabob skewer?  I guess they must be.  Have fun with your hammer toes and bad ankles when you get to be 50, is what I say.  Finding a pair on cute ankle booties that had a modest, wide heel was like trying to find a unicorn.

Today I went to Ross because we need new sheets for the bed, but instead came out with a red blazer, a cute top that I'm totally wearing tonight, AND a brand new bra for less than I paid at Kohl's yesterday for one top and a pair of shoes.  So suck on that Kohl's, seriously.  The top I got is sort of silky and black/maroon with this super itchy beading at the neckline, but hey it fits and it's cute.  It looks really good with my matador pants.  It's just what I was looking for, a top that showed that yes I've lost weight, but also manage to not show too much (aka my still present fat rolls).  And ladies I ask you, is there anything more wonderful than a new bra?  It's like getting temporary surgery that only cost me $12.  I'm going to be sashaying around like Mae West tonight.  I'll have Eric take a picture of me so you can see the outfit that caused all of this strife, lol.

I have been debating about how to eat today since we don't know what kind of food is going to be at the party.  It's like, do I eat super light all day so that I can safely indulge tonight (but potentially be super hungry and over eat), or do I just eat normally so that I am full and only eat a little at the party?  I decided to eat normally, although that didn't leave me many calories to play with for the party.  If I go over a little it's not the end of the world.  After lunch today I ate some PB mixed with chocolate chips as a snack, which I kind of regret because I guess that was a pretty hefty calorie snack, and it depleted my calorie macros.  Ah well.

Musical Advent Day 9 - "Christmas Vacation" by Mavis Staples

So, it's a fact, but National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation is the best Christmas movie ever made.  I will fight anyone who says otherwise.  Actually let's not fight, let's drink egg nog from some moose punch glasses and listen to this awesome song from the beginning credits of Christmas Vacation instead.  It's a genuinely good song because Mavis Staples is the shit ("Respect Yourself" by The Staples Singers is everything), but whenever I hear this song I am filled with complete joy.  It just reminds me of how my family is obsessed with this movie.  We quote it at all times of the year, we watch it every year (sadly everyone in their respective states now), and it will always be our favorite Christmas movie as a family.

Monday, December 8, 2014

Best (and Worst) Foot Forward

I had to start off with this picture of Molly from this morning.  While generally she's a handful and the complete opposite of our last dog, she is so sweet in the mornings.  Of course she's only half awake, but I'll take what I can get.  She loves those Momma chin scratches.

After a very over indulgent weekend I've got to get back into a better head space.  I feel like this weekend was worse than Thanksgiving because we ate horribly and I wasn't able to get in as much activity other than my challenges.  I've also been really awful about drinking water, I know I'm not getting nearly enough.  That is definitely a priority for this week.  Oh and my stupid TOM tapped me on the shoulder yesterday and was like, "Hi, um, just thought I'd show up and bloat your stomach for roughly a week.  Is that cool?"  I honestly don't know what my weigh in is going to be like tomorrow.

So in other news, I decided to stop doing the burpee challenge, and it's not because I hate them and am wussing out, although I really do hate them!  I've had an issue with my foot for the last couple of weeks that honestly didn't alarm me at first since my feet generally always feel questionable.  I'm used to random aches and pains, which is why I didn't even bother to mention it before.  But 2 weeks ago I started getting this "hmm this seriously doesn't feel right" pain at the top left of my left foot.  Since I have no idea what the proper name is for anything, I just took a picture of my foot with my pointing to where it hurts.  Because you know, you needed that.

So, the pain is on the edge of the foot, right where I'm pointing.  It's a sharp pain that feels more bone related than tendon related.  I really noticed how bad it was getting after doing our long walks, and Zumba was also pretty painful due to the jumps.  If I put weight on that side of the foot or press the spot hard it definitely hurts, and even when there isn't weight on it, I'm aware that it feels off.  I am going to give it a week to see if it gets better, and then I guess I have no choice but to get an x-ray to see if it's a stress fracture, which is unfortunately what it sounds like just from what I've read.  As for what caused it, I think my shoes were partially to blame since they were weak and worn down.  I also was very stupid and there were a lot of times I did my Richard tapes or Zumba in bare feet, which is a huge no no.  The only reason I did is because I was doing the aerobics on carpet, and my shoes would cause this weird dragging sensation that was hurting my knees.  In bare feet I don't get that sensation, but I may have caused a worse problem.  My whole point in telling you this drawn out story is that while walking and all that makes that foot hurt, the burpees make it feel excruciating.  I think a lot of it is that push off that you do from plank to squatting, and then of course the jump at the end.  Every time I do burpees I can barely walk afterwards my foot hurts so bad.  It's honestly just not worth it, and I can revisit the burpee challenge in the New Year.

The foot thing is causing anxiety because I really love my walks, and of course Molly loves the walks, and I don't really want to stop doing them.  I'm also not going to be able to hit my step goal for the month if I don't do my walks, so I don't really know what to do.  I'm also really sad because I wanted to do a 3.5 mile run next week in honor of my birthday, but I don't know if that's going to happen.  We'll see I guess.

Speaking of feet, I did forget to tell you guys about my Cyber Monday present to myself, a new pair of New Balance Minimus shoes.  My faithful pair of teal Minimus shoes that carried me through many training runs, a couple of half marathons and my marathon will now be retired as just a pair of kick around shoes.  The picture on the top right of that collage is the tread on my current shoes, vs my brand new pair on the left.  No wonder I have foot issues lol. They had a screaming deal on them, and I got a $110 pair for $79, plus free shipping!  I really love them although I know my aunt will say "Um, LSU colors!!" first thing.  (I went to SLU but their colors are green/gold, which is unfortunately the same color of the douchey Oregon Ducks so those colors are tainted now.)  My shoes came in over the weekend, and I am pretty excited to wear them (and honestly hope they help my foot).

Today's Activities:

30 Day Challenges (45 second plank, 80 second wall sit)
40 minute walk
SF Day 8

Today's Menu:

Breakfast:  Oat bran and an orange
Lunch:  Hummus, Laughing cow cheese, Dr. Kracker flatbread
Dinner: Chicken soup with Israeli cous cous

Musical Advent Day 8 - "Frosty the Snowman" by The Ronettes

Three things about Phil Spector are true:  1) He's batshit crazy, 2) his wigs defy logic and 3) he brought us some of the best music in existence.  Case in point, the Ronettes.  Ronnie Spector always manages to sing with such vulnerability and it's so endearing.  Much like Darlene Love, she's a goddess, that's just really all there is to say about it.

Sunday, December 7, 2014


Well, our behavior at the Ale Fest yesterday ended up being a solid B minus, although I still really felt like garbage at the end of the evening.  I suppose the bonus is that I didn't feel like garbage this morning, which is a definite improvement over other years!  My issue honestly wasn't the beer, it was food!

I was very proud of myself, I not only stuck to tasting only the beers on my planned list, but I dumped a taste that didn't blow me away, AND I didn't taste my 10th beer on the list because I recognized that I'd simply had enough.  How I managed to have a moment of clarity when I was full of alcohol holiday spirit is beyond me, but as I was sipping my 8th taster I was like you know, I'm over it.  I gave my last 2 beer tickets to Eric and was done.  Never have I dumped a taste just for being mediocre, I usually only dump if they're super nasty.  And never have I not used all my tickets, in fact I usually buy more!  There have been years we easily tasted 15 to 20 beers.  We also didn't buy any full glasses of beer this year, another first.  So those are all very positive behavior changes that I can be proud of.

The food thing started out good.  Eric and I split a wedge of a muffaletta sandwich from this place called Bunk Sandwiches.  I was pretty skeptical that they would make a decent muffaletta being that it's a Louisiana thing, but it was almost spot on.  The sandwich literally almost made me homesick it was so good, their olive salad was frighteningly on point.  Then we got a bag of roasted cinnamon almonds to split, and even shared some with some strangers around us.  So, 1/8th of a muffaletta and probably a half cup of cinnamon almonds, not the definition of health, but not as bad as past years.  Where we went astray was once we left.  I was feeling pretty fried and ready to get on the train to go home, but Eric was hungry and wanted to go to this French bistro around the corner to eat.  My mistake was that I wasn't hungry, but decided to eat anyway since I thought it would help soak up some of the beer.  Not a good plan.  For some reason they were running brunch (it was almost 4 pm!), and everything on the menu was super heavy.  I was surprised since they usually have salads or just smaller plates you can get, but there was nothing light.  I got the opposite of all that, which was an eggs Benedict.  Such a bad idea, it was so rich and greasy on top of all the rich beer, I was only able to finish half of it.  So, huge mistake #1, eating again.  Mistake #2 was immediately coming home and going to sleep at 5 pm, although my body really wasn't going to give me an option on that.  I woke up at 6:30 pm not knowing who I was, where I was and also kind of wishing someone would shoot me in the face.  I seriously felt so sick that commercials for food made me feel like throwing up.  I drank a ton of water and refused to eat any kind of dinner.  I honestly don't know that I could have kept it down if I'd tried.

As awful as all of that was, I really didn't feel that bad when I woke up today, it's almost like I experienced all the hangover type stuff last night.  I know that doesn't sound very impressive or fun, but in past years the day after the Ale Fest was always a lost day filled with regrets, horrible headaches, dehydration and self loathing lol.  Waking up without feeling all of that was definitely an improvement.

Next year I am going to further improve my Ale Fest game by only drinking half of my tastes unless they are super delicious.  There were really 4 beers out of the 8 that I tasted that were super memorable and worth drinking the whole taste.  The other 4 were good, but I could have dumped the rest of the tastes on those 4 without feeling super bummed about it.  I also realized this year that we need to have a food plan in place if one of us wants to go to a second location, and already have a place picked out that has better options.  I honestly think having that second meal really messed me up, I am just not able to handle several rich meals in a row like that anymore.  All good learning curves for next year!

Today has been spent drinking a ton of water and going Christmas tree shopping!  We picked out a monstrous 7 foot Grand Fir that was comically difficult to wrestle in and out of the car.  Despite it being the size of a linebacker from the Steelers, it is really pretty and smells heavenly!  It's always so much fun to get our special ornaments out and put them up.  We've managed to gather up a collection over the years.  I got a special ornament made last year with a picture of Natasha (her nickname was Tootie) as a surprise for Eric.  It's definitely dear to us and we gave her a place of honor right at the top/middle of the tree.

I was definitely happy with the tree once we got it done, although it's so huge that Eric had to switch places with Molly on the couch because he couldn't see the TV from his normal side!

I know my choices for our Christmas Musical Advent series have been pretty wild so far, but for Day 7 I'm going super traditional.  Since this was the last of my Christmas decorating, I thought "It's Beginning To Look A Lot Like Christmas" by Johnny Mathis was appropriate.  :)