Wednesday, January 22, 2014

everything hurts and i'm dying

well, not quite. but there is a smidgen of truth to what my girl leslie knope has to say.

i've spent the past two weeks getting back into a healthy state of mind. since i am a firm believer in "baby steps," the first week was all about getting used to cooking and eating healthy food again. which was surprisingly painless - until i wanted to eat ALL OF THE FRENCH FRIES. but i didn't. though i do believe in one cheat meal/day per week because otherwise you will want something so much that you binge like crazy and feel more bloated than this blowfish:

surprised little sucker, isn't he?

so after i eased into that, it was time to go back to the dreaded gym and spend some time with my best frienemy, the treadmill.

personally, my biggest issue with the gym is actually getting there. once i'm in the building, i can usually find the strength to pound out a 45 minute to an hour workout, whether it be a zumba class (my fave) or on the treadmill (not my fave). i've been making it stick and holding myself to the commitment, even when all i wanted to do was to go home and sleep.

the results have been good so far, minus the fact that my body is not quite used to the pattern yet. and by that, i obviously mean that muscles i forgot i had hurt and i struggle to stay awake past 9pm. in fact, last night, i fell asleep on the couch at 8pm for the second week in a row. i also happened to have a glass of wine in my hand. and the noise it made when it fell is what woke me up (note: no wine glasses were harmed in the writing of this post nor in the sleeping on the couch.) 

i'm happy that i've made it through two weeks on my 52 week plan to a better betsy, but it has not come easy. and it will continue to not be easy. and it will probably make my muscles hurt even more. but at least i know now that i have some.

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

the weight of the matter

let me just say this to start: i never have been, and never will be "skinny."

okay, that feels good to get off my chest. though. if you know me, you probably already knew that fun fact.

anyway, the reason that i bring that up is because i did something controversial - for some - yesterday. i bought a new scale. and then this happened:
why is this controversial, do you ask? well, because a lot of people think that weight isn't what matters most. how you feel/look in your clothes/whatever your personal guidepost is what is important.  and to a degree, i agree. (ooh, rhyming!) however, i've learned that for me to be successful, i need to be accountable. and the best way to make sure i do it? by weighing in.

i have struggled with my weight my entire life. hell, i came out of the womb a hefty 10.1 lbs (sorry mom). i have been on and off diets for as long as i can remember. while always active - kickball in grade school, volleyball in high school, general life now - i still managed to always be a couple sizes bigger than the rest of the girls in the class. and for the most part, it didn't bother me much. but there were days where i wanted to shop at 5/7/9, and i have never in my life have i been a single digit size. nor will i ever be again. it's not in hand i was dealt. i get boobs and but for days instead, so i think it's an even trade.

i've done a couple of significant weight losses in my life: once in high school and once after college. the one in high school was mostly because i wanted to play collegiate volleyball and i needed to drop some weight to look more desirable to schools. it was the skinniest i have ever been in my "adult" life. realistically, it is not feasible for me to get down to that size again.

the one after college was different. after discovering the deliciousness in beer and all night pizza delivery in college, i put on all the weight i lost in high school - plus another truckload or so. i was living at home in south florida, working at a job i liked, but didn't love, in a city i didn't care for with only a couple of friends to hang out with. i threw myself into healthy eating and obsessive working out - and it worked. i dropped an olsen twin over the course of the year. and i looked great. but i wasn't happy.

shortly after, i realized my life goal of moving to nyc and life got better. i got a job in marketing at a magazine, i made amazing friends and have a city as my playground. there's always something to do here: a new bar, a new restaurant, a new show. i wanted to take everything in and i didn't want to miss out. and when you start making plans with people you care about, it becomes extremely easy to forget about going to the gym. when you're drinking until 3 in the morning, there's the requisite pizza before bed and greasy brunch in the morning. so in the 4 years i've been here, i've put back on a good chunk of what i discarded before i got here. and i'm finally ready to take it off - for good.

i was thinking back to those two key times and realized what was the factor in making it happen: weekly weigh-ins. every week at the same time (first thing in the morning right after you pee), in basically the same clothes (stark naked, obvi) on the same day, I would step on the scale, and write my number down in a book. and that book was the FUCKING LAW! sometimes i would even step on the scale daily, just to keep myself in check. it didn't count unless it was the official day, but it would remind me that every decision counts.

i've cried on a scale too many times to count, but i know that for me to make sure this sticks, it's what i have to do. i'm not a masochist or anything, but sometimes you have to hurt before you feel good. (wait, isn't that the masochist motto? oops.)  

since i'm a lady, i won't be weighing and telling, since that IS masochistic. instead i will be stepping onto the scale and into my new regimen. but first, i need to put neosporin on my paper cut.

Thursday, January 2, 2014

another year, another set of most likely impossible goals.

while i wish i could say that i'm not one of those nerd-bombers who takes the beginning of each year as the chance to make a resolution or two, despite the fact that 90% of the country don't manage to keep to these said goals. (note: i definitely made up that stat, but i bet it's true). but unfortunately, i do think that the new year is a chance for a new beginning. and every year, i think that i'll have different results. yet, normally, when people ask me how my resolution is going, i respond similar to mr. campbell.

looking back, my goals for the past few years have been basically the same thing: lose weight, be more adventurous, blah blah blah. and i haven't managed to do anything about it over the fast few years. this year has been kind of meh. it's not that i'm unhappy with my life, i have a lot of great things going for me, like amazing friends, a supportive family, a city i'm obsessed with and a super awesome cat.

i mean seriously, i have some great stuff going for me.

but i just feel like i could be happier and better at my life, you know? and since there is basically no one stopping me but me, i decided (again) that it's time to get back in order.

however, when i was thinking of how to "resolve" for this year, i realized how everyone fails. by setting one goal that is too hard to attain. so i've decided to take a different approach this year and hope that i get different results.

there are three basic dreams that i - and most people - want in life: health, wealth & happiness. now, if i set out to attain all three at once, i would fail faster than i chip my manicure (fast). so instead, i have decided that each month i'm going to work on small goals that can help me get to the macro (impressive word, i know) goal. but what's important is that i make sure i do it for the right reasons.

heisenberg knows what's up.
here's a little breakdown of what i'm looking for from each of the pillars:

health: i mean, this wouldn't be a betsy resolution if i didn't say that i wanted to lose some weight this year. because i do. but more importantly, i want to focus on living a healthy life, which includes eating better and getting some exercise - of course - but it also means that i want to put my health first. if you don't feel good, you're not happy. this past year i've struggled with a lingering allergy situation, some kind of asthma flare up and a lot more aches and pains than i think are normal for a 28-year old woman.  not to get all hippy dippy, but i do believe that some of these issues might be able to be cleared up with a regular routine as opposed to the chaos i have been living lately.

but that doesn't mean that i'm not going to use my healthcare that i pay my hard earned money for to check out the stuff that hangs out longer that than it should.

wealth: i wish i could just resolve for wealth and all of the sudden be blessed with an unlimited bank account. but that's not how it works. and while i am SUPER good at spending money, i'm terrible at saving it. which my parents love to point out. so this year, my goal is to learn to save and actually do it. create a budget and stick to it. put money in a savings account and not touch it. you know, basic life skills that i should have by now. so basically, i'm just going to become a normal, functioning adult who spends less than she makes in a month. groundbreaking, i know.

happiness: this one isn't as easy to pin down into a specific thing or goal to it. because one thing doesn't make you happy. it's a bunch of things all working together in harmony. or some bullshit like that. and while i do agree that attitude is a big part of happiness, it's also about finding things that bring you joy, even if it's just a simple cat image on the internet.

it's a kitten eating pancakes!
i'm heading into my last full year of my twenties and i don't want to have any regrets about things i wanted to do that i missed out on because i was scared or nervous of the repercussions. so i'm going to find things that bring me happiness and take advantage of them. whether it be springing for the (cheap) 10 minute massage at the nail salon, getting pink hair or even seeing a movie by myself because i can't possibly wait for another minute, i'm going to just do it and love every second of it.

and theoretically, the reason i'm telling all of you fictional readers this is that i'm going to come back at the end of each month and let you know what i did to work towards these goals, if i'm succeeding, failing or if i just straight up forgot about it. apparently accountability is what makes things real.

for january, my main goal is to cook more and eat out less, because it helps me get to ALL THREE GOALS. i know, crazy, right? but if i cook more, i save money from eating out. and if i make it, then i know what's going into it, and i can make sure i choose healthier options. and i actually love to cook, so it makes me happy to be in the kitchen.

since i'm sure your minds are completely blown right now, i'ma drop the mic and pick up a ladle to get myself a serving of the delicious chicken tortilla soup i made in my slow cooker yesterday while you crazies nursed your hangovers.

yep, 2014 is basically already my bitch.