Cleaning day!

Every Sunday is cleaning day in the MegsFitness household. That, and, if I’m lucky, batch cooking day. Today, it could very well turn out to be neither if I’m not careful.

I had a ton of fun with my family yesterday. Lots of good food, conversation, and plenty of fresh air. This is the daughter of one of my cousins, but it pretty much represents my attitude too:

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Woo! Party!!

All that fresh air and excitement makes for a really sleepy megsyface. This blog brought to you by: procrastination.

Check list for the day:

Install doors in crawl spaces
Dispose of broken baby gates (thanks, Darwin)
Vacuum nursery play room
Change out guest bedding
Clean up office desk…

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*Maybe* get some menu planning done.

Oi. Better get started.

Independence, not indulgence day ;)

I got my big floppy hat and I’m ready for a day in the sun! We’re heading to Grandma’s house for a barbeque where I will have to battle the urge to eat massive quantities of brownies, cake, cookies, and creamy salads. After that, were off to a cruise along the river, and fireworks around 10.

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I had a good breakfast, and even a small protein based snack so that I’m not ravenous when we get to lunch.

I know that complete denial of all sweets will backfire on me, so I’m going for the “small tastes” strategy. ^_^

Happy independence day!

Bringing fitness back to MegsFitness

I’m a member of Nerd Fitness and have been using the Academy Facebook group for inspiration, motivation, camaraderie, advice, support, etc. for quite a few months now.

What’s cool is that I’ve even added a few new friends to my Facebook feed so that they can get sick of me even sooner ;) *waves at Ginny, Robin, and Rachel*

I’m still feeling the loss of the Weight Loss Warriors. The academy, though, and the ’round the clock support is priceless.

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One of the ‘rules’ of the Academy is “never two in a row.” I can usually use it as a mantra to keep things on an even keel. Today is a total wash, but I know tomorrow will start fresh and I’ll be able to make really healthy choices.  The biggest hurdle is going to be stopping eating when I’m full rather than mindlessly munching just because food is available. My strategy is to eat freggies, avoid sugar, and drink lots of water. When I’m no longer hungry, I’m going to get rid of my plate and eating utensils, and possibly even relocate to a different room. I’ll get plenty of exercise walking tomorrow, so I’m not worried about that.

I also want to post here more often, even if it’s just a shorter entry. I need to track my fitness over the next twelve months and I want to be proud of what I see.

End of a Chapter

I burned a bridge last night. This morning, I’m not happy about it, but I’m also not going to ever be the one to start rebuilding it. Because of the interconnectivity of the bridge I burnt with other friendship bridges, another one collapsed, and a couple more are smoldering.

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This metaphor isn’t going to last the whole way through this blog entry. Basically, there are a few things that have been, and probably always will be true about me:

1. As a water sign, I’m ruled by emotion.
2. I will drop even good friends like a hot coal if I’m burned. I’d rather have a select few true friends than a plethora of fair weather friends.
3. I call it like I see it.

These three added up yesterday and it ended up spelling the end of an era. Before I was “MegsFitness” on WordPress, I was MegsFitness on SparkPeople.

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Through Spark, I really got started in caring about my health, wellness, and fitness. I met a great group of like minded people there and we banded together as the Weight Loss Warriors.

With this group of inspiring women, I ran my first 5k. I completed the warrior dash. I started addressing my hang ups about food. And I realized that I didn’t have to wait until I was skinny to be happy.

There are a few success stories that sprang from that group. Women who set their mind and their money towards achieving their fitness goals and making it their sole mission in life. There are others who made family more of a priority. Others who focused on career first. It was a safe zone where we could, and did, talk about all of these facets of our lives.

And then there’s me.

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One of the success stories posted her own personal opinion to her own personal timeline yesterday. But it was so far from the ideals that we had held as warriors that I was appalled. With open eyes today, I see that it’s possible that she just may not have explained herself clearly. The fact of the matter, though, is that she had friends trying to explain on her behalf and not only did she not disagree, but she voted her agreement with the handy dandy ‘like’ button. The message that I was getting loud and clear was that if you’re still fat, it’s your own fault, and you should be ashamed of yourself.  There were caveats and qualifications–she’s not talking about people with a medical condition, or people who are currently in progress of losing weight–she’s only talking about people who are unhappy with their weight and refuse to do anything about it. Well, okay, but how can you tell whether someone has given up by LOOKING at them? That was the question that went unanswered the whole night. The article that was shared in order to illustrate this woman’s disgust was a blog on HuffPo about a woman’s realization that it’s more important for her to be making memories with her son than to constantly be ashamed of her body. Perhaps the unintended message on the WLWs part is that motherhood is no excuse for being fat. This was CERTAINLY the message this woman’s friends were touting.

Here’s the offending paragraph from Huffington Post:

“I vowed to myself, there in that kitschy water park, that I won’t ever sit on the sidelines again. I won’t deny a pool date because I don’t want to wear my bathing suit. I won’t skip the ice cream with my son when he begs me to eat one with him. I won’t enter calories on my phone. I will wear my bathing suit. And I will do it and remember you, the mom at the water park today — and the role model I must be for all my girls.”

And here is just some of the vitriolic response from someone who was supposed to understand:

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I went off on her. I called her out for being judgemental of a person based on looks. For not understanding that developing healthy relationships with family are more important than weight loss–but what I should’ve said is that they’re more important than burdening the next generation with the same self consciousness and shame that we had to overcome. Having one ice cream sandwich with your child on a hot summer day does not mean you’ve given up on fitness. I daresay it means you have a healthier relationship with food than someone who is constantly scrutinizing every morsel and tracking every calorie. That’s disordered eating, and it’s not healthy in the long run.

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But this blog isn’t about that discussion again. It’s about burning bridges. Of course the natural action from me was to unfriend this person and stop following their fitness page. The angry part of me also called her friends a  douche-canoe and a bitch, respectively.

Then I took it to the Weight Loss Warriors. I asked if we could have a vote on kicking her out. After all, this group was always saying how it’s safe to go to the gym because no one is judging you–and here this member of our ranks was obviously judging everyone who didn’t drop the weight like she did. I expected discussion, even agreement! But I was wrong, and that’s why a second bridge collapsed and even more are smoldering.

Some agreed with me and actually booted the member in question outright. Some completely disagreed with me. One even left the group in a rush of wtf. They wanted to keep the group whole and invite everyone back to talk, but the damage was already done for me.  I’m not going to associate with someone who says that motherhood is an excuse and deems that you’ve given up soley based on the fact that you don’t say no to a summer treat and you’re still overweight.

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I’m sad, this morning, about how it played out, and that I felt compelled to leave the group myself. They were such a huge part of my fitness journey and really making it into a lifestyle change. The good news is that I have the like-minded folks as friends on my page, and I still have the Nerd Fitness Academy behind me. I’ll be alright.

Spontaneous Spouse Survey

WITHOUT ANY prompting, ask your husband/boyfriend these questions and write down EXACTLY what he says (switch the pronouns as needed to do this with your significant other or spouse! Post a link to your results in the comments below)

1. What is something your wife/girlfriend always says to you? “Honeybear…”

2. What makes her happy? “Snuggles”

3. What makes her sad? “What’s the most obvi–I guess when a character in a show dies.”

(all the tears, all over again. T^T)

4. How does she make you laugh? “Being silly”

5. What was she like as a child? “Uh… from all accounts a pain in the butt.”

6. How old is she? “You are 28.” (me: “I’m 28 NOW or TURNING 28? *starts doing math*”  Jeff: *laughs and rolls his eyes because I can never remember my age this year* “you ARE 28, you are TURNING 29.” LOL)

7. How tall is she? “Um.. 5’8? 5’6? Somewhere around there.”  (5’6″)

8. What is her favourite thing to do? “I thought you already asked that? Number 2?” me: “No, that question was ‘what makes me happy,'” Jeff: *snort of laughter* “Aren’t they the same? Snuggle?”

9. What does she do when you’re not around?Imgur.”

10. If she becomes famous, what will it be for? *long pause* “Art.”

11. What is she really good at? (as Taz is walking on me and getting in the way) “Uh, working around your cat!”

Taz Face

12. What is she not very good at? (as Taz steps on the paper I’m using to jot down the answers and I’m ineffectively trying to shove him off while writing at the same time) “Working around your cat :P”

13. What does she do for a job? “What do you do for a job?  You yell at people. Usually indirectly.”

14. What is her favourite food? (no hesitation) “S’mores.”

15. What makes you proud of her? “Lots of things.  Success in your career, or really anything you try to achieve.”

16. If she were a character, who would she be? “Well that’s a broad question.  Fantasy, movie, book?  I dunno… That’s a tough one.. There’s a few on the end of my nose–tongue–whatever….I can’t think of any!  (pause) You’re very much not a one-dimensional character.  (longer pause.)  Uh. That ‘what’s a meow-meow’ girl, I guess.”

17. What do you and her do together? “Be unproductive, which may or may not include snuggling.”

18. How are you and her the same? “We’re married :P”

19. How are you and her different? “Boy and girl? Just kidding :) Um.. You’re more driven than I am for physical stuff.  I’m more driven for mental stuff.”

20. How do you know she loves you? “Just your behavior. It’s rare to not see you smiling, unless you’re crying or watching TV.”

21. What does she like most about you? “Clearly my humor and wit ;)”

22. Where is her favourite place to go? “Sculpture Garden.”

source: Quennell Rothschild & Partners

Legend of the Triceratops

Hello, blogosphere.

I was thinking back to the days when I used to blog all the time and I realized what was different –

– I didn’t have *much* of a social life

– I went out and did things to pass the time (biking, exercising, sight-seeing in the city, drawing)

– I wrote about the mundane happenings in my life in a ‘dear diary’ format. (now I do that on Facebook)

The cool thing about those days is that I actually connected with people on a more personal level and made genuine friends writing about life.

The down side is that my family didn’t really appreciate me writing about *their* lives in *my* journal—they wanted their privacy, after all.

Now that I’m an adult, and I’ve had things about my life spread through the family grapevine without my permission in the past, I kinda *get* that feeling.  Don’t tell a story that’s not yours to tell.

Unfortunately, that leaves me in a little bit of a writing rut.  There’s not much that I *do* any more, not that I feel worthy of blogging about.

I suppose this is my attempt to change that.  I’m going to go back to the dear-diary format, except that I’m going to respect the wishes of my family and friends.  That means you’ll see mundane stuff here, but I’m also going to write about my experiences that might resonate with you.

Entry 1: Legend of the Triceratops

So getting back on the fitness bandwagon, I’ve been more active in the Nerd Fitness Academy Facebook community.  The women in that group are inspiring at every level of fitness and it really motivates me to keep up.  It’s not unusual to see someone’s progress pictures put up and then to see a whole slew of comments reflecting on where the changes are observable to the third party.  They’re all positive.

When someone asks ‘what is it about this community that makes us so judgment free and welcoming?’ the resounding reply is that people are still judgy, but they check their attitude at the proverbial door.  ‘Not here,’ is the general consensus. I think that’s great, because little by little, I think it helps the women in our group to become less judgmental overall.  If you have enough practice putting your snark in check, eventually it becomes second nature.

Well, then someone who didn’t get the memo to check the snark at the door decided to comment on someone else’s progress photos. They weren’t outright attacking the person, but they were not exactly appreciative of the person’s decision to post progress pics in their undies.  Such remarks were made as “women shouldn’t lift,” and “have some class.” It wasn’t fair, and I think it stung a fair few of us to read her scathing retort.  It blew up, not because those two comments are wholly against the NF way of life, but because this person only had something to say when a woman who was not already fit decided to share her progress.

Another Rebel stepped in, though, and delivered one of the best rebuttals I’d ever read.

“WOMEN should do whatever the [expletive removed] they want to do, be it body building, bikini competitions, ballet, yoga, or anything else they want.  WOMEN should be proud of the body they have regardless of if it “looks like a mans” or looks like a [expletive removed] triceratops.

…Here, we love.  Each other, ourselves, the good, the bad, the big, the little, the round, the sharp, the muscle, the fat… We don’t judge, we don’t criticize, even if we don’t understand or believe the same as someone else, there is nothing but love.  I will tolerate ABSOLUTELY nothing besides love and respect in this group.  Join us or leave us.” – Ginny Mason

Since that post, the women of the Academy have been sending “Rawrs” of appreciation to each other, buying merchandise to support the cause thanks to a little pop-up shop that another Rebel made, and generally making better decisions because we’re all thinking “what would a triceratops do?”

It’s even permeated my home life and ‘being a triceratops’ is what me and Jeff have been using as words of encouragement for each other.

Jeff: I’m not doing too well

Jeff: [Explanation]

Me: Can you be a Triceratops?

I mean, like, screw what other people think, because you’re freaking awesome.

I know [detailed related to explanation]

You’ve done great things with your life, and you’re doing so much more.  You need to tell yourself that you’re a [expletive] Triceratops and trample anyone who says otherwise.

Another time, we were supposed to go to the store, but I had been wearing shorts around the house, even though I hadn’t shaved in about a week or so :P I told him that I’d need to change first and he said “No you don’t! Triceratops don’t care what other people think!”

LOL

It was absurd but so encouraging anyway.  Under guise of being a Triceratops, I’ve avoided some sweets, gone on more walks, and made it down to the gym more often than I probably would’ve without that fire.

It seems to be tapering down a little bit in the Academy, but I’m going to make a post later today about how I’m a Triceratops for going to the gym when I *really* didn’t want to.  RAWR, they’ll all say, and I’ll puff up my chest and nod in agreement—RAWR indeed.

A little sunshine, a little fresh air, a lot of happiness

Sunshine and fresh air can’t fix everything, but it can sure recharge your store of feel-good chemicals and put a brighter spin on things.

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Things at work are getting better, in the sense that things have returned to the status quo, until more news comes out.

Since the weather has improved so much, I’ve been making an effort to get outside and go for more walks.

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Winter in Minnesota is a time to hunker down and hibernate. The lack of Sun slows metabolism, increases melatonin, and generally causes the inhabitants to retreat into a quiet, somber ‘survival mode,’ until the sun decides to show itself again. 

As a sufferer of SAD I can honestly say that my mood has improved exponentially with the weather.

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Even the hubby notices.  I gravitate towards healthier foods–reveling in the fruits and vegetables of the season before I’m forced all too soon back to the dreary canned and frozen varieties of winter.

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This week we’ve been eating summer squash, zucchini, crimini mushrooms, and watermelon.  Today, I was able to have spinach and tomato diced into my omelet.

This afternoon, I was able to get out for a 1.34 mile walk in the sunshine (as tracked my Map My Fitness.

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I guess what this entire entry is trying to say is this: MegsFitness is back. Fresh food, fitness, motivation… It’s on, and it feels so good to be back!