Beginnings, emotions, Fitness, goals, health, mental health

but then I stopped.

OLIVIA NEWTON-JOHN, Physical video, circa 1981-82

I’m writing this during the day. ON MY LUNCH BREAK. Yeah, I still can’t get over that. ūüôā

So this morning I did something that I wanted to write about. You want to know what it was? I didn’t go to the gym and I didn’t feel guilty about it.

At first glance that sentence probably doesn’t mean very much to you. So what? I didn’t go to the gym. I don’t go to the gym several days a week (rest days.) It is the second part of that sentence that makes me smile. I have all the excuses for wanting to sleep: it took me a little while to fall asleep last night, the cat woke me up sometime in the middle of the night yowling as he was chasing a bug (I had to get up and make sure George wasn’t dying or anything), there was a thunderstorm early this morning and it was lovely to sleep to…and when my weekly alarm went off at 4:30am I was sleeping so good that I just turned it right off and went back to sleep. Again, it’s the part AFTER I’m most proud of.

Usually when I make the decision to sleep in and miss a workout, it’s almost a moot point. I will lay there and beat myself up for giving in, for being weak, telling myself that this is why I’m fat, etc. I have very, very ugly self-talk early in the morning. And then I don’t end up benefiting from the extra sleep because I’m so mad at myself! And I didn’t do that today.

Don’t get me wrong, old habits are very hard to break. I started to let it all wash over me. I started thinking about my friends seeing my LACK of Apple Watch activity and thinking me lazy and fat, I thought “Sarah, this is only slowing your goals,” I thought the gym regulars and my workout partner would think me wishy-washy and uncommitted, I thought myself ugly. BUT THEN I STOPPED. I really can’t tell you how hard this was to do, but I did it. I stopped all the thoughts and I redirected them. And I went back to sleep.

Maybe I’m finally putting some parts and pieces of my old Psychology degree in place, and maybe I’m recalling some old tools from counseling I’ve had, but it is slowly working.

Do I still have those ugly thoughts? Yep. They’ve tried to creep up on my several times this morning. And I have to actively and forcibly stop them. After sitting here and unpacking it all (after I journaled it), I’m realizing that I have a lot of internal things to work out, but I also seem to have a big hangup of others judgement of me. And it’s not by their doing – it’s my own mind. I need to think some more on how to help me change that setting within myself. I shouldn’t be having these thoughts to begin with, much less fighting them 24/7. Baby steps.

In the end, that extra sleep was ah-mazing. It was well worth it. It makes me no less of a person because I didn’t get up and go to the gym this morning.

TODAY I LOVE: sleeping during a thunderstorm
SONG OF THE DAY: “The Place Where Lost Things Go” by Emily Blunt (from Mary Poppins Returns)

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Fitness, health

Black coffee and honesty

acs_0254-1One of my compromises with myself when I started this blog (in deference to my last one) was to be completely honest. You get the good and the bad, the ups and downs, the wins and the losses. Why be fake? Why try to trick everyone into believing that life is rosy all the time and every single goal I set, I reach?

Somewhere out there (if you don’t have this song in your head right now I don’t know you at all)…anyway, somewhere out there I’ve lost my focus and drive. For some reason the journey seems a lot more difficult this time around. And yes, I’m talking about weight loss. I think I’m always talking about weight loss. When you’re uncomfortable in your own skin (and your own jeans) it is always what you’re thinking about.

I keep finding excuses!

  • I’ve had a rough week, I deserve this treat.
  • PMS…give me all the things I’m craving.
  • Whew…I’ve got meetings all week. They’ll feed me. I don’t need to count.
  • I’m cold and I don’t feel that great. I should just eat what will make me happy.
  • I’m going home and nobody cooks like my mom and grandma. I don’t get home that much, I should enjoy it.

Anyone ever say some variation of those? I usually have really great discipline and can bypass all that stuff. Not this last month. Frankly, I’m scared to get on the scale for what it is going to tell me. I know I haven’t lost but I’m terrified to see if or how much I’ve gained. I’m failing at all my self-talk. I’m failing at saying NO.

I’m failing. And I want to leave it at that. Throw a fit. Say that I just can’t do it; the plan doesn’t work for me. I want to tell everyone how hard it is to be me. But guess what? That doesn’t help me either, it just makes me fail…more.

So I’m not going to do that. Because deep down I know these things:

  • I’m not failing at everything. Those are just lies that we tell ourselves.
  • If I fix my self-talk and start thinking about things on a decision-by-decision basis, I can choose to say no and make better choices. I can make choices that aren’t based on hormones, emotions, and circumstances.
  • I’m not failing at workouts (for the most part – I’ve had to miss a few.) I’m pushing myself and not giving in. I like getting stronger and seeing what new things my body can do.
  • It is going to be hard. It just is. I’m not in my 20’s anymore and things are just HARD. Recognize the challenge, say “game on”, and do it. Just do it.
  • Again – don’t look at weeks at a time. One decision, one good choice, one moment.
  • Plan better.

This post was for me. It was public self-talk and public accountability. We don’t always win. It’s so easy to fall down the social media rabbit hole of how all things are perfect. They aren’t. There is no quick fix. It isn’t easy. I haven’t won; I’ve lost this round. I let myself lose this round.

But that doesn’t mean I can’t win the next one.

New moment. New day. New week. New month. As the character President Jed Bartlet says in one of my favorite shows, “What’s next?”

TODAY I LOVE: finally finishing the “Downton Abby” series on BBC

SONG OF THE DAY: “Forever” by Mumford & Sons

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divorce, emotions, Fitness, goals, health

the calm and the storm

Flying over a thunderstorm outside of Dallas this past October

I think I’ve stared at the “Add title” part of this post for a good 20 minutes. I just finished writing a very mopey post about memories and pain. It’s still in my drafts but I’ll probably never post it. I’m sure everyone is tired of me mulling over my divorce and the never-ending tentacles of it’s reach in my life. It still just amazes me how I can go from moments of pure joy and happiness to watching one video of a concert we attended and I’m zapped back into sadness. It has to stop hurting at some point, right?

Anyway, I really just wanted to update you on my goals and such. I’m entering week 3. I can say without hesitation…it’s been hard. I’ve pushed myself in workouts (which is a good thing) and it’s made me so sore. Week 1 of my “diet” was hard but I was 100% perfect. Well…I fell off the wagon hard this weekend. I had cravings that I haven’t been able get rid of so I indulged them. The scale scolded me HARD this morning, but it was necessary. I’m in a much better place today. Overall I have lost and not gained any weight. I wish it was more, but this is for the long-haul, not in the day-to-day ups and downs.

Little wins and little falls…it is life and going to happen. It’s how I even out and recover that matters. It is not letting my “little fall” take me all the way to “I don’t care anymore.” And guess what? I still care. A lot. All of this matters.

So if you’ve had a weekend like I have, where you’ve celebrated birthdays and you’ve enjoyed some things outside of your norm…find your way back. And remember your “why.”

Now. I’m going to go watch something that makes me happy and not sad home videos on my phone.

TODAY I LOVE: Milk Makeup Kush Lip Balm

SONG OF THE DAY: “Girl” by Maren Morris

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Fitness, goals

tired and hungry and sore

Well, I think my title says it all. It fully encapsulates this week.

I started Phase II of my new year journey on Monday. I jumped in with both feet. Phase II included new programming at the gym (both strength and HIIT), calorie and macro guidelines based on my reading of Fat Loss Forever, and getting up early to do said gym workouts. After two weeks of the head and stomach flu, that 4:30am alarm is BRUTAL. So yeah, this week has been me on the struggle bus. BUT I HAVE DONE IT.

No cheats. I’ve stayed perfectly within my macros and calories. I haven’t missed a day of workouts. I just need to keep this up until it’s a habit and then it won’t be such a struggle. I’ve done it before and I know I can do it again.

Here are some things that are helping me this week:

  • I accidentally changed the setting on my bathroom scale to kilograms. I weigh every morning and then take an average for the week so see gain/loss. I didn’t mean to change it to kilograms but it’s been so much better for me emotionally! I’m much too lazy to remember the conversion to pounds that early in the morning so it’s awesome to weigh without all the guilt and shame of the pounds number. Why do we put so much pressure on ourselves? Sure, I still weigh a ton but in my mind it’s just a number when it is kilograms.
  • I’m a nerd. You know this. I created a lovely excel workbook that has all my BMR, TDEE, and macro calculations (based on the book mentioned above.) I also have calculations for all my weights and measurements so that it calculates my averages for me. I am also able to see trends.
  • You can eat a LOT of veggies for little calories.
  • I’m not always going to improve my lifts at the gym. But I’ve been complacent for far too long. I haven’t stopped working out in all this time but if I’m honest I’ve been “mailing it in.” Every day this week I’ve given myself a pep talk to challenge myself. Don’t just do it to do it; make those calories and muscles work. And it has paid off in soreness. ūüôā

I hope all of you are achieving your goals as well! One day at a time, friends. One moment at a time.

SONG OF THE DAY: “Rescue” by Lauren Daigle

TODAY I LOVE: my new pillow…makes a huge difference!

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Beginnings, divorce, emotions, Fitness, goals

2018…let it go (queue Elsa.)

I’m typing this post in the throws of a massive cold/flu/grossest junk EVER mess. ¬†Knowing that, it’s safe for me to say that 2018 can just keep on trucking right out the door. ¬†HOWEVER…this year was one I won’t forget: the good, the bad, and what’s to come…

Let’s start off with the bad and just get it out of the way. ¬†If I had to sum up the year in two words they would be stress and emotion. ¬†I had so much of both. ¬†The year started right off the bat with my first kitty baby, Callie, passing away. ¬†She lived with Ryan after we divorced but it was so sad to let her go. ¬†She was one more piece of my old life that disappeared. ¬†My ex-husband got remarried and that effected me more than I ever thought possible. ¬†It was the sense of loss all over again. ¬†I was knocked down again when I found out they are expecting a baby. ¬†I’m happy for them, I mean that sincerely, but it’s just….so weird. ¬†Onward…my cat got very, very sick (his bladder blocked and ruptured) and that was a stressful, time-consuming, and VERY costly months of recovery. ¬† I moved. ¬†It was a great move and I’m SO HAPPY I did it, but still. ¬†New place, new roommate, packing and unpacking…not fun, expensive, and stressful. ¬†Alright, now take all of that and add abnormally high work stress. ¬†Oh, and I gained back all the weight I lost in 2017. ¬†BAM! ¬†2018 in a nutshell.

If I left it at that you would think the year was total crap, right? ¬†It’s a good thing I had a lot of happies too. ¬†ūüôā

I hired a fantastic gal from Louisiana to work for me and she’s been phenomenal. ¬†With her help, we had an exceptional audit this month. ¬†I’m excited for the new projects we can tackle this coming year. ¬†I have a roommate! ¬†It’s been such a nice treat having someone to come home to and share life with everyday. ¬†We’ve went on on several girl trips this year; a hiking trip in Hot Springs, AR and a weekend jaunt to South Bend, IN and Mackinac Island, MI! ¬†I cannot tell you how much I loved Mackinac Island. ¬†It’s a must-see for anyone looking for a beautiful and unique place to visit. ¬†Lastly, one of my biggest happies, I spent 3 weeks in Kauai with my fella and his family. ¬†Whoa, what a HUGE blessing. ¬†I’m convinced there isn’t a more beautiful place on earth.

So.  2018 all wrapped up in two paragraphs.  Boiling down your year into small sentences is harder than you think.  Crazily enough, the year felt like it went that fast.  Two paragraphs worth.

What do I want for 2019? I don’t really like to do resolutions; I prefer goals. ¬†Kinda. ¬†Here are my hopes/goals for the year to come:

  • Consistency & Discipline. ¬†I let stress and emotion (see above) control a lot of my life this year. ¬†I let it control my actions. ¬†I let it control my mood. ¬†I let it control my health. ¬†I need to change that this year.
  • Intentionality with my Health. ¬†If I follow my goal above, my health will fall in line too. ¬†Diet, exercise, skincare, stress-management, and emotional well-being will all be better if I can be intentional, consistent, and disciplined with the tools I have to work with. ¬†I know what to do. ¬†I just need to do it.
  • Strengthen my faith. ¬†I don’t think I need to explain that one. ¬†ūüôā
  • Payoff at least one loan. ¬†Money is tight for me now as 2018 was a huge drain on EVERYTHING. ¬†I need to be budget focused and paying off one loan would be a great ¬†snowball for that.
  • Find my happy. ¬†Whatever that might be.
  • Beat (or at least make it to) the end of one video game. ¬†Ok, this one is silly, but still. ¬†I’ve gotta get to the end of at least one.

 

Let’s do this 2019.

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beauty, emotions, Fitness, health

really real reality

Shootout.jpg.e2ceda5e6854df2c8893abada78336abIf you’ve followed me for very long at all, I write a lot about my weight, exercise, diet, etc. ¬†I like these things. ¬†I like seeing progress and I hate admitting failure. ¬†However, like two sides to any coin you’re always going to have them both. ¬†Last year it was success upon success in my weight-loss and fitness journey. ¬†This year is a different story.

Life has happened to me in a big way this year. ¬†I was depressed for quite a long time and stressed even longer. ¬†Even so, I did the very best I could with my macro guidelines and I exercised way more than not. ¬†Still…no change. ¬†We’ve lowered calories, changed macros, changed again, added and added and added cardio…no change. ¬†I haven’t gained it all back, but I’ve gained this year. ¬†Many of my wins last year have been overturned. ¬†It’s hard not to say, “Sarah, if you just cut your calories more, you have to lost weight.” ¬†Um, yeah, no. ¬†I’ve done that. ¬†I can’t really cut anymore or my body will definitely freak out.

To say that it is defeating is the most gigantic understatement you can utter. ¬†I’m leaving for vacation in a few short weeks and this is NOT the shape I wanted to be in for it. ¬†My poor roommate has had to deal with my meltdowns this week especially as I’m trying to buy a dress for a wedding and purchase clothes for the beach.

WHY JUST WHY.

And sadly, the long and the short of it is this…we don’t know. ¬†Maybe my body is tired of dieting. ¬†Maybe my body has some weird hormone things (hello STRESS) that are hijacking all the good things I’m doing. ¬†Maybe I just need a reset and a change. ¬†Maybe I need rest. ¬†Who the hell knows.

So. ¬†Really real reality. ¬†I’m staring at my beach vacation straight in the eye. ¬†I’m many pounds heavier than I planned. ¬†In my mind it is kind of like one of those old outside-the-OK-corral standoffs. ¬†Wyatt Earp staring down his opponent (before he went crazy – important fact.) ¬†Am I going to let my perception of how I needed to be ruin my vacation? ¬† ¬†As much as it is a struggle to say – no. ¬†I’m not going to let it win.

I’m me. ¬†Despite the outside package and wrappings, I’m quite awesome. ¬† I can lift very heavy things and put them back down. ¬†I have great hair. ¬†My skincare routine is longer than some people’s showers and I love it. ¬† I can spout random music facts on a whim. ¬†I have a really awesome cat. ¬†The older I get I’m finding joy in being myself and surprising people who expect something different. ¬†I smile a lot and I like to make other people smile too. ¬†My fella loves me. ¬†I’m going to PARADISE.

When I wrap my head around all those great things, how can I let a stubborn body beat me? ¬†It is all in my PERCEPTION of me. ¬†And the great thing is…I can work on changing that. ¬†It might not change how my clothes fit or the number on the scale, but if I can find happiness in my happies until the tide turns, the coin flips, or my body decides to listen, well, that’s a big win. ¬†I’ll dip back into my college days, and all those psychology/counseling classes: ¬†I’m taking a mental picture and I’m reframing it so I see it differently.

If you’re in the same spot I am…take stock and reframe the shot. ¬†It is a by-the-minute battle, but if I can do it then you can too.

TODAY I LOVE: Peach & Lily.  I should just sign my paycheck over.

 

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Fitness, goals, health

self-portraits & sushi

I’ve been putting this post off. ¬†To be honest, based on my mood right now I probably shouldn’t be writing it either, but oh well. ¬†You’re getting a very honest and real Sarah today, folks. ¬†Hold onto your butts.

A little over a month ago I wrote a blog post about my goals for the next 30-days. ¬†I’m afraid to tell you I was unsuccessful with almost all of them. ¬†I was 100% on my macros and I followed my lifting program. ¬†But everything else? ¬†Nada. ¬†My weight didn’t move even an inch. ¬†After a year of success, followed by 30 days of diet and exercise compliance that resulted in NOTHING…yeah, kinda depressing.

Now, we’re changing up some things and the next two weeks in particular will be a very, very hard reset. ¬†Everything about me is out of whack and I’m not really sure why. ¬†So yes, there is a plan in place and we’ll figure this out. ¬†I will not feel this way forever. ¬†That is the only positive thing coming out of this blog post.

I’ve been taking this photography class in my free time. ¬†I’ve got several road trips on the docket for this year and I want to be on the top of my game remembering the gorgeous things I’m going to get to see and experience. ¬†One of the exercises I’m asked to complete in this class is daily self-portraits. ¬†No, I’m not talking about selfies. ¬†Ok, I guess they are sort of selfies but a lot more difficult to grab. ¬†I took my self-portraits today and decided to get a lot more of my body and not just my face. ¬†Let me give you a word of advice. ¬†When you’re already feeling REALLY down about your appearance, DON’T DO A SELF-PORTRAIT.

Despite how I’m sure this entire post is coming across, this is not a pity or a woe is me post. ¬†I’m just…down. ¬†I’ve had lots of ups. ¬†I’ve had so many ups that it’s hard to talk to you from the valley of the down.

Professionally I was brilliant this week. ¬†I turned my introvert switch off; I sparkled and shined and glowed in my role. ¬†It was very, very…up. ¬†And now I am not.

So tonight I’m watching old Grey’s Anatomy and eating sushi I bought at the grocery store earlier today. ¬† Earlier today I updated apps on my computer and I cleaned out the cabinet in my office. ¬†Maybe I’ll start a new book before bed. ¬†These are all happy things. ¬†So maybe I’m ending this post better than how it started. ¬†ūüôā

TODAY I LOVE: the smell of grapefruit essential oils being diffused

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