Thursday, October 25, 2018

The Fitness Diaries, Resumed

In June 2016, I was at my highest weight (when not pregnant) ever. I weighed 150 pounds. For reference, I'm 5'2" with shoes on, and this put my BMI at 27.4 (firmly overweight). I felt awful, had no energy, and didn't want to continue gaining weight. My IBS was rampant and I just felt helpless. That was how my life was. I felt like I had to try something. So I started counting calories and doing what had "worked" before. What I had done in 2013, and 2014, and then got pregnant and stopped doing.

In one year, I had lost 6 pounds. SIX. And I still had no energy, terrible IBS (like, as in I had no idea what foods would trigger sudden bouts of diarrhea, I was taking immodium several times a week). My skin was a mess and I was battling breakouts.

I started my Arbonne business in May 2017, and didn't really think about the nutrition side until about June. I started doing hormonally balanced protein shakes for breakfast (instead of cereal) and taking Digestion Plus. I did some research and cut out dairy, and suddenly not only was my skin clearer for the first time in YEARS, but I actually only needed immodium once every week or so. With those small changes, and some occasional exercise, I lost 3 pounds in just over 2 months. Not a lot, I know, but that's HALF of what I'd lost in the entire preceding year.

October 2017

In October of 2017, I bit the bullet and actually did the entire Arbonne 30 days to Healthy Living. I cut (in addition to the dairy that I'd already cut out) gluten, soy, corn, sugar, alcohol, and coffee. I stayed 100% committed. And that month, I lost two pounds. Slowly, but more rapidly than I'd been losing weight before. Most importantly, this actually helped me discover that gluten is a trigger for my IBS (and I did have blood tests done to rule out Celiac, given family history).

January 2018
I have continued to be gluten and dairy free in my diet, and have done the 30 days to Healthy Living several more times over the last year. I also added more regular exercise, specifically with Beach Body (I have a couple good friends who are coaches, and I love the variety of available workouts), and also working to close my diastasis recti (which will be its own post).

February 2018

As of today, October 25, 2018, I have lost 25 pounds since I began this journey. In the last year, I have lost 15 of those pounds. My stomach is no longer bloated, and I can actually feel good and not squished in my clothing. I feel healthy and amazing. (picture to come, I just need to actually take one, haha).

I'm mentally getting back to the point where I can start blogging again. I will probably discuss some of the reasons for my long hiatus at some point, but I don't know what the future holds.

Thursday, May 3, 2018

Grief, in Retrospect: It Pours On, or RIP Beagle Butt

This post has been a long time coming, mostly because it's been too raw to sit down and write.

On October 11, 2015, we said goodbye to MacGyver. He was struggling again, as bad as before. It sucked a lot but C and I decided that we couldn't make him suffer any longer. We had really, really hoped we'd have him for more time, but it turned out that we only gained 10 days. I spoiled the crap out of him those 10 days, lots of snuggles and treats and love, but I was not ready to say goodbye.

Looking at this, now... 2 1/2 years later.. still sad. Still deeply, achingly sad. But there's life beyond sadness. The dandelions are blooming again this spring, and we sigh and remember how MacGyver used to eat them like it was his job. He would get so annoyed that there were still so many to eat, so he'd take breaks and then go graze some more. He was a little asshole, but he was our little asshole and we loved him. The girls have stuffies that are beagles, and they are all named MacGyver. Even Little Cat C, who I don't think remembers him. Sadness is nostalgic now, but just part of life.

Friday, July 8, 2016

Finding the Light in the Darkness

Sometimes, the heartbreak of the world around me weighs down so heavily I feel tears waiting in the wings all day, and don't have the will to stop them.

This is one of those times.

The shooting in Orlando, killing and wounding so many. Out of fear. Out of hate.

Uproar over who uses which bathroom. Who really gives a fuck. As long as the person using the bathroom is neat about it and doesn't pee on the seat, flushes the toilet, and washes their hands, I really could not care less. 

The shooting in the airport in Istanbul. Again, out of fear. Out of hate.

The bombing in Baghdad. Killing hundreds. Again, out of hate. Who knows if it is hate driven by fear or by something else. Fear and hate are so closely linked, it's hard to say sometimes which came first. Most often we fear something and that fear becomes hate, and it can be taught.

Killings here, in the US, on a small scale. Men shot for being black by cops who... were afraid? Were filled with terror for everything else happening in the world? Were under too much stress? Who reverted to being scared little boys and fired..why?

Cops shot by snipers for being cops. For trying to serve and protect.

Can we just stop, humanity? Can we just take a step back and reach out to the man/woman next to us and acknowledge the human in them, while they acknowledge the same in us? Can we put aside our petty or not so petty differences and agree to disagree while we address more important things?

I don't know. I want to think humanity is inherently good, but I don't know anymore. I want my children to grow up in a world that has figured it's shit out. I want the adults to stop acting like spoiled and petulant children, and I want them to start acting like normal children. The kind that understand that kindness is paramount.

I'll be here. Under my blanket. Waiting for the heaviness to subside, hoping not to spend all day falling apart inside as I hear the collective heard of humanity crumbling. I'm going to look at rainbows and puppies and kitties and babies. I suggest you do the same. Find a little sunshine through the clouds and spread what light you can in the darkness. Pick out the constellations amidst the human chaos. Knit back what has been rent and torn.

I recognize the humanity in you.

Thursday, December 31, 2015

Goodbye and Good Riddance, 2015

I don't even know what to say about 2015. There have been two good things to come out of this year, and they both happened last January. LCC was born, and we bought a house. Otherwise (and including those things, I suppose) this has been the hardest year of my life. 11 years ago today we brought MacGyver the beagle into our home and he's not here any more. Because we haven't had enough shit happening in the last 6 months, since Thanksgiving we've had a falling out with our closest family members (which really sucks) and a car accident (yay more money spent on cars) and we've faced a deeply personal and sucky as shit medical decision. Dee spent a day in the ER getting evaluated for appendicitis the Friday before I left for a 3 days business trip (she's fine, by the way). Nevermind the mental health toll this has taken on me, which I have no fucking clue when I will have time to deal with it but whatever.

I'm really glad C has been my partner in this. We have a very strong marriage and we have survived. We have 3 healthy kids and one healthy dog.

Honestly I can't wait to say goodbye to 2015. I sincerely hope to never have a year this intensely shitty again.

Wednesday, December 2, 2015

Final Thankfuls, et cetera

Sometimes, life punches you in the guts. You're grateful for what you have (and lets just accept that yes, I am very thankful for the life I have, even if I didn't finish my daily thankfulness posts) but sometimes shit happens that makes you withdraw and appreciate that things could be worse. And while you acknowledge that they could be worse, that doesn't mean they don't really suck right now.

I will not be saying more about this. Suffice it to say that everyone is (mostly) okay, and even if and when we aren't, that is okay too. We're healing and on the right track. Things suck, but they will get better.

And on that note, when 2015 ends I hope the door hits it in the ass on the way out.

Monday, November 23, 2015

Thankful days 21, 22, and 23

I am thankful for surprise baby teeth.

I am thankful for wine.

And today, I am most thankful for Clorox wipes (specifically in the context of cleaning up midnight vomit. Oy. Kids, amIright?).

Friday, November 20, 2015

Thursday, November 19, 2015

Thankful, day 19

I am thankful for my job.

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Thankful, day 18

I am thankful that I got to spend so much nice quality time with my son the last couple nights while the girls were sleeping and C was working.

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

Thankful, day 17

I am thankful that we live in a stable place.

I see all this insanity about why our country (founded on the ideals of immigrants, escaping religious persecution, such as it is and was) should lock its doors against refugees from Syria. It breaks my heart. Why must people pretend that their fear is in the name of their god? Immigrants, refugees, are not terrorists, any more than the Protestants down the block are KKK members. Why do all the relief organizations seem to focus on faith and "godliness" when they could just focus on humanity? Why do we need to look to a god for the push to help? Why can't we just look in the mirror or at the pictures in the news and say "Dammit, I'm a person, you're a person, what can I do to help you, fellow human being?" rather than "NO! Why would you think about letting an ISIS member sleep on your couch?" (That is an actual comment I saw on a friend's Facebook status.)

This fearmongering has got to stop. I am happy and proud to live in a state that said "YES! COME HERE!" but at the same time, I am heartbroken that our state actually had to stand up and say something. I understand that the homeless and broken of our own nation need help too. But, though I hate to look at it this way, things aren't changing for them much. The refugees? They have left their homes and their countrymen and their neighbors. They have lost family members and friends. They are running scared in the hopes of finding safety. Every day for them is a new reality where they may not even speak the language and they rely 100% on the kindness of strangers to help them survive.

I guess what I am saying is that anyone crying out against letting refugees seek asylum here in the safety of our nation is GO LOOK IN A MIRROR. If there is a human being staring back at you, then help your fellow humans. They are not terrorists. They have already faced the fear of the unknown to escape the terror they know. Open your hearts, and if you can, open your homes. If you can't donate money, send positive prayers and love their way. Love your fellow humans. And FFS, Thanksgiving is next week. I cannot think of a more appropriate time of year to remember and celebrate the bond that joins ALL HUMANS in need than a time to give thanks for what we have and how we survived what we left behind.