the next 30 days

I wish I could tell you that I started this year just killing my workouts and nailing my diet and never being lazy or tired or sick or inconsistent.  But that would be a lie.  With the exception of a couple of good weeks, 2018 has been a roiling boil of excuses and exceptions.  It is embarrassing.  Also infuriating.  I woke up this morning just straight up mad.

I don’t like that all my new smaller clothes are a tinge uncomfortable.  I don’t like that I have no energy because I haven’t been eating correctly.  I don’t like being scared to step on the scale.  And I REALLY don’t like feeling like a failure.  This is a really real confession that I hate to admit, but hey, it is what it is.  I hate that in my mind it feels like I’m giving all the doubters what they wanted to see all along.  “I knew she wouldn’t/couldn’t keep it up.”  *WOMP*  That statement is way too much to unpack in this post, but it’s definitely something I’m journaling about privately.  Homegirl has some issues.  I really hate that my mood and thoughts of myself tend to hinge on how comfortable I feel in my skin.

ANYWAY.  I had every intention of being 100% everything this week.  However due to a variety of reason that were out of my control, that didn’t happen.  So here’s what I’m telling you – I’ve made a pact with myself.  All this mess stops here.  I mean, I was perfect with diet and exercise for 8 WEEKS WITH A BROKEN ANKLE.  I can do this.

I love my Apple Watch.  I’m tied to it like I married the thing.  I love that it gives you little challenges to complete every now and again.  I am a sucker for pretty rewards.  (Yes, I was the girl in school who wanted alllllllll the gold stars by her name.  I like shiny things.)  So I’m creating a Sarah Challenge.

In just over 30 days I go to Dallas for a work convention.  There is a pretty good possibility I’m going to have to be fabulous in front of a whole lot of people.  I don’t want to feel like this when I need to be the epitome of self-confidence.  For the next 30 days I’m committing to myself to do the following:

  • Close all my 3 of my apple watch rings every day.
  • Lift/strength training 6 days a week (already do this when I’m consistent.)
  • Auxiliary Class (barre, TRX, yoga, etc.) 2 days a week
  • 100% on my macro levels.  No exceptions. No cheats.
  • Drop at least 5lbs of the fluff I gained over the holidays.  I didn’t handle the holidays and vacation appropriately.  I’ve learned my lesson.  Now I need to fix it.
  • Everyday identify something within me to feel confident about.

I can do this.  I’ve done it before and I’ll do it again.  I just need that line in the sand and the deadline to make it happen.  Once I can get in the groove I’ll be just fine.  No more excuses.  I just can’t do it anymore.

TODAY I LOVE: the entire Drunk Elephant skincare line.  GAME CHANGER.

Climbing again

It is Friday night and I’m sitting here on my sofa, having a cup of sleepy tea, and watching Grace & Frankie (again) on the TV. (Side note: I’m SO excited for Season 4 which comes out next week.) ANYWAY. I got off work this afternoon and came home and deep cleaned my living room. I tore down the Christmas tree and all the decorations. I moved all the furniture and vacuumed. I bought a lamp (also random.) All that to say, I’m super content in this spot, right this second. Which puts me in a good place to talk about something that I’m not happy about: my fitness.

A week before Christmas I messed up my back. It was AWFUL. I’m too embarrassed to say what I did, but it was a dumb thing and I’ve LEARNED MY LESSON. ANYWAY. I couldn’t bend my spine at all. I couldn’t even sit. I could only lay flat or be in terrible pain. So needless to say my workouts were not fabulous. And then I went home to my family for Christmas. And then I went to California for 2 weeks to be with my fella. My butt has not been in a gym for 3 WEEKS. It’s embarrassing. And I didn’t follow my macros over the holidays either. I wasn’t terrible, but I wasn’t perfect.

Confession: I’m absolutely terrified to step on the scale. (I’m not stepping on the scale until Monday morning, but still.).

I feel bloated and chunky and lumpy and likely 10 pounds heavier.

So that’s the bad news.

The good news? I can fix it. I can fix all of it. You know why? Because last year I learned how. I can’t tell you how much that reassures me that this is all going to be fine. This year when I’m looking at my fitness and health journey it is totally different than last year. It’s kind of like carving an ice sculpture. When you get started you have to take off a whole bunch of the bulk before you can even start to shape what you’re really trying to carve. 2017 was getting rid of the excess for me. In 2018 I get to sculpt something fantastic. Isn’t that wonderful!?

I admit, I don’t like that it feels I’m starting this year behind. But you know what? I had a great Christmas and New Years and California dreams. The rest let my back heal. I just…lived for a while. And I wouldn’t trade that for anything. Even if it does feel like I’m starting in a deficit. Whatever I’ve gained will come back off. I’ve proven I can do it.

So with that said…tomorrow I go back to the gym with my best girl. Good things to come.

TODAY I LOVE: my Filimin lantern

the post I wasn’t sure I’d ever get to write.

It’s Monday morning on Labor Day.  I’m sitting here on my sofa, having a cup of tea, planning my meals for the week, and gearing myself up to hit the gym.   This last month, especially the last week has been one of the most stressful I’ve had in a while.  Exactly four weeks ago I broke my ankle.  Last week I had an allergic reaction to a dye in a new vitamin I started taking and that turned into some really nasty urticarial welts in spots (don’t google that – so gross) all the while working an 80 hour week to respond to Hurricane Harvey.  I’m hopped up on so many steroids and antihistamines right now I should be resistant to just about everything.  It’s just been a lot of things and little rest.

The broken ankle really messed me up mentally.  I was having such great momentum and progress with my lifting and weightloss and I knew that was going to have to change.  I’m so, so blessed (and I can’t say this enough) with my best friend, who also happens to be my coach and encourager and sister by choice.  She’s brilliant and within hours already had me talked of the ledge and had alternative moves I could do for every single exercise.  I didn’t have to stop.  I’ve had to make lots of modifications.  I cannot tell you how much I’m ready to do cardio other than the stationary bike and row machine.

Back in January I set a goal to lose 30 pounds.  If I’m being entirely truthful, I didn’t think I’d be able to do it.  Why?  Because I’ve said that same goal for the last 2 years.  And I never happened.  This morning I stepped on the scale, as I do every morning, and I’ve officially lost 31.2 pounds.  It took me 7 and a half months but I did it.  That was 7.5 months of working my ass off, fixing my metabolism, losing fat and gaining muscle, getting my dietary calories UP not DOWN, and not giving up.   Looking back at my weight log, I lost 9lbs while with a broken ankle.  Crazy!!

Last week Ash asked me what my new goal is now that I was nearly to my current goal.  I’d already thought about it.  Now I want to get to my goal HEALTHY weight.  Which now, as of this morning, is about 9lbs away.

I’m really glad I got to write this post.  The words I’ve wanted to say for over two years.  Thank you to all of you who have been so encouraging.  Most especially my Ash.

TODAY I LOVE: I get to go buy new clothes for a good reason

Month 3 Update

If you follow me on twitter or instagram then you’ve already read these results, but it’s worth elaborating.  April was a challenge for me.

This past Saturday marked exactly 3 months to the day I began this new fitness journey.  In those 3 months I’ve lost 16.5 pounds and a total (whole body cumulative) of 21 inches. It’s un-freaking-believable.  If you’re just looking at total number of pounds, it’s really not that much over this length of time.  Back in the day when I would calorie restrict and go nutso on cardio I’d drop weight a lot faster.  But, as I’ve said all along, I’m trying to do it right this time.  Long term.  Lifestyle change.  No more yo-yo.

I really can’t get over the inches.  Yes, even that has slowed down this last month, but it’s still changing.  Muscle is my new drug.  And it is very addicting.

Admittedly, April was hard for me.  I had some traveling and I kinda put myself in cruise control far too many days.  I’ve set some attainable goals for May and I’m kind of excited to see what changes they bring in my 4-month update.  I’m ready to push myself again and be one step closer to that sexy summer confident body.

I’m ready to get stronger physically, mentally, and most of all emotionally.  Even as I write these great numbers I’m really struggling emotionally with some nasties right now.  I’m ready to work those things out too.

Work in progress is a good thing, on all fronts.  Who knows what the finished product will be?!

TODAY I LOVE: 80’s movie ballads (yep, singing at the top of my lungs)

exercise & travel

I used to think that traveling was great because that meant I didn’t have to workout.  Back in the day when I was running or training for a race, I *might* have a run just to explore a city but I NEVER sought out a gym.  However, when you’re serious about something, even if it’s just getting fit, you find a way to make it happen.

I just returned from my third trip since beginning my new health journey.  This time was different as I didn’t have access to the standard gym.  I had to use alternative means.  I would like to introduce you to The Tube.

71vgE9z+FwL._SX355_

This is a resistance tube that comes in varying strengths and sizes.  It’s small, fits in your suitcase, and can be made into an epic torture device for a great workout.  My best friend/trainer/all around favorite person introduced me to the tube many months ago when we were traveling together.  She had brought hers along in the event our hotel had a crummy gym.

I won’t say all, but MANY of your usual strength training lifts/maneuvers can be done with this unassuming little tube.  As such, I was able to get in all my workouts and lose little ground during my trip last week.  They were great workouts!

If you want it bad enough, you’ll make things happen.  For me, I want to keep seeing the gains that I’m getting to be come a better, fitter, healthier Sarah.

Keep the tube in mind if you need some alternative ideas for fitness and travel.

TODAY I LOVE: tacos.  I just really want to eat a taco right now.

let’s talk about muscle

I had the most eye-opening realization this past week and I have to share.  I’ll be honest – the whole concept of “muscle” has really been quite foreign to me most of my life.  And what I mean by muscle is actually TRYING to attain any kind of muscle growth/definition that was outside of the typical girl “I’m just toning up” mentality.

For the last 9 weeks I’ve been marching to the beat of a different drum, attempting to get my body to repair and change in a healthy and long-term sustainable manner.  I’ll talk about exactly what I’m doing in a different post at a later time.

Periodically over the last 3 years I’ve kept weight logs and measurement logs and stored them in my journal app on my phone.  Since I’ve begun this new way of life (and stuck with it), I take my weight every day.  That’s been something I’ve had to get used to, but honestly it doesn’t freak me out or depress me as once as it once did.  And the reason why is in my “eye-opening realization.”  🙂

In addition to weighing every day, I take new measurements every month.  Last week I took my two-month measurements.  Since beginning this journey I’ve dropped 11 pounds and 16 inches (total  full body.)  The number on the scale is still awful; I’ve got loads of weight to drop, but I’m losing FAT.  I was bored this past weekend so I was reading through my journal app for old entries and such and stumbled upon one of my measurement entries.  It was when I was at my lowest weight in a while, July 2015.  I was 20lbs lighter than what I am right now.  But get this – in the measurements I was only 4 INCHES different (total).  And yes, it was all in the butt and thighs (this girl has a ghetto booty.)  Can you believe that?!  Only 4 inches.

Inconceivable!  All that stuff people tell you about muscle being heavier BUT “slimmer” is so true.  I wouldn’t have believed it if the measurements hadn’t been my own.   If nothing else this whole exercise is teaching me that the number on the scale really truly isn’t the whole picture. (Some days it’s harder to remember that than others, like when it goes up, but hey, baby steps.)

Muscle for the win!

TODAY I LOVE: the sound of the rain on the roof.  We need the rain!