Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Who am I?!?

In blogging land, there are a number of ways to get yourself more notoriety, in order to trap more readers.  For all of those Mommy-Bloggers out there, there are actual Mommy forums, and Mommy networks,  and . . . I don't know, lots of stuff.  The same is true for Weight Loss blogging.  It seems strange, right, that blogging about being over weight, or losing weighting, or trying and failing to lose weight is it's own internet niche market, but it's true.  There are hundreds upon hundreds of people out there writing about the size of their waists and hoping you will be interested to read about it.

Every now and again I get bit by this same bug, and do something to try to bring a little more attention here.  So I decided to join a WL blog network.  I joined a site, submitted my URL and banner for approval and. . . and I received this email the following day:

Thanks much for your interest in Writing Healthy. However, I'm only looking to add personal blogs that share individual weight loss stories.

Owner, Writing Healthy

Huh??  So. . . I haven't been sharing my individual weight loss story with you all over the past 6 months.  My mistake.  Instead I've been, I've been,  gosh.  I just don't know what the heck I've been doing.  
This probably sounds ridiculous, but it did get me thinking.  What is this blog about?  What's my 'point' here?  And then, well, why the heck do I keep on writing?

Cuz if it's not a weight loss blog, it's probably mostly not an anything blog, which is okay, a few people seem interested, but I probably WON'T be getting hundreds of readers and enough ad-clicks that I can quit my job at age 28.  SUPER bummed about that.

Here is where I stopped writing and remembered that, in fact, this is not my first nothing-blogsperience.  I wrote on Xanga from August of 2005 to December of 2008, apparently. http://ashtothed.xanga.com/  The wonderful thing about the internet is that things don't ever seem to disappear. My first job out of college (wretched experience), my first year of marriage, Allie going into heat for her first (and last) time, it's all still out there. Fascinating.

So there's an update on my introspection (blog-trospection?).  And this is appropriate, since this is NOT a weight loss blog, but I have NOT lost any weight this week.  I'm okay with that, mostly because I'm distracted by the fact that Shane and I are going away today on a a crazy romantic 5 year anniversary get away, and not showing our faces around here again until Friday.  Oh, and to top it off, we've got a 3 1/2 hour drive today, and I'm really in the mood to play Encore.  

Have a wonderful week, my dear and faithful readers, as I will be enjoying the beach.  And eating too much.  And trying out my new swimsuit in the hot tub that sits in our private patio.  That's right.  That feeling you're having right now?  It's called jealousy.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Shopping R0x0rs!

Today I had a break between clients thanks to Star Testing (this will be the only positive thing I ever have to say about Star Testing, so enjoy it) and I had the chance to run by a couple of stores.  First, I went to Payless and, while I'm disappointed that as their shoes get cuter, they also seem to get more expensive,  I also picked out like, a BUNCH that I want.  And they currently ARE running a BOGO sale, which will last through the 16th.  That does not give me much time.  I'm currently weighing in around 146.5, so I've got to shed that last pound point five in the next five days if I want to fully reap the rewards of my weight loss.  Can she do it?!?  YES SHE CAN!!!! Picking out shoes is apparently a super strong motivation for me to keep on my diet and work out extra hard.

Oh, and then, I went to Target and amongst the few things I had to pick up for my clients, I decided to buy myself a cheap ($8) pair of sunglasses, as mine are lost and summer is here and the sun will fry my retinas up like ________ (That's where you can insert something witty and metaphorical.  I can't think of anything, and I think it's time you start participating more here.)  However, BONUS:  The already cheap glasses were on an extra awesome sale, meaning I got these:
For $2.48!!!  So this is what it looks like when you're winning...
And when you're both winning and like, RIDICULOUSLY sexy.  Although that might be a more masculine sexy pose.... not sure what a feminine sexy pose would be, except that it would probably use more boobies.  

Alrighty folks, as you may be able to tell from my excessive use of the tank top, it's time for me to go run a buncha miles.  Here I come, 145 with my new shoes on!!

The best of times and worst of times

Finally got my hands on my mom's SD card, so I officially have some photographic evidence of my 1/2 marathon.  So for your viewing pleasure, this post will serve to outline some of the best and worst of this activity called running.

So to begin with, the best-

Starting line:  Spoiler alert- the guy with the 1 on his chest, in the light blue shorts wins it all.  And he's in his 50's.  I'm impressed.

Nearing the end of the race, about 12.5 miles in and just heading back into the park.  Thumbs up for the camera, because I'm cool like that, squinting because I forgot my sunglasses. And, you know, it was really sunny.
 Not moving fast, but at the same time, not standing still.  
 In your face, Mommy
 Super awesome participation medal-  Woot!!
 My beautiful and supportive family

And now for the worst-

This stuff is from last night. An unexpected negative aspect of running outside is the speed at which your body hits the ground after you catch your foot on some poorly laid asphalt.
 Oh, and the older, browner bruise is not from the fall.  That's from about a week ago, when I shut my knee in the car door.  At the moment I have a total of 8 visible bruises from my knees to my feet.  Not sure where most of them are from, and I'm starting to get concerned...
Also, this really hurts.  It hurts to move my knee, even a little.  Not meaning to complain, and not looking for sympathy, but my daughter doesn't care, and I have no one else to tell.  I wish I was a cat, and had whiskers to tell me "You can't fit here" and "Watch out you're too close to that thing", because whatever internal sense that humans have that keep them from bumping and bruising their way through life, well, I don't think I have one.

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Photoshopping, and why it's hard to be a real live human.

For my 27th birthday, my husband gave me Photoshop.  I'm going to choose to believe that this had more to do with my interest in picture taking and editing, and less to do with my personal need to be photoshopped.  It's a blast.  I love learning to "clean up" images, from simple stuff like adjusting color and brightness, to more complex, such as removing unwanted items from my pictures.

Now I'm not expert, but I have learned some helpful, and dangerously tempting tricks.  For example:
Here's me and Shane from our honeymoon, looking just like we looked after spending a day snorkeling and sunning on a Mexican beach.
Now, here we are again, but without some of the boat junk.  Oh, also my arm is thinner, stomach flattened, wonky hairline adjusted, and chest, let's say, enhanced.

It's not magazine quality work, of course.  But just the same, we live in a day and age where I, a total photshop newb, can make myself lose 20, maybe 30 pounds with a few mouse clicks.  I'm fascinated by this, but also totally disturbed.  IT SHOULD NOT BE THIS EASY TO LOOK SO MUCH BETTER JUST BECAUSE I OWN A COMPUTER AND SOME PERSONAL-USE QUALITY SOFTWARE. 

It has become PAINFULLY tempting to do this to all of my pictures.  It feels wrong, it feels dishonest, and just the same, wouldn't you?  Oye.  Oh, and it's also a good reminder not to believe anything you see.  Especially if you saw that thing on the internet.


You know that moment when you're at a pool, the moment where you've gone as far as you can go while wearing clothes or a towel, and it's time to shed the outer layer and make a break for the water?  Part of you wants to drop the towel and sprint for the partial covering of  water, but the other part of you knows that running causes jiggle, and you're hit with that horrible catch-22:  If you run, people will get to see you for a shorter amount of time, but what they see will be much, much worse.  If you walk slowly, you can keep additional movement to a minimum, but allow everyone a nice long view of your thunder-thighs.  Anyway, this is the moment I keep in mind when trying on bathing suits.  Will this suit reduce or enhance the pain of that moment?  How many body parts will my hands need to obscure while wearing this suit?  If the water's cold, will the suit make me want to risk hypothermia just to hide my exposed backside?  These are the questions we need to ask ourselves.

Anyway, it took hours, and a couple of stores, and shopping in a way where it was in no way fun for me at all, but success has been had, and I am now the owner of a shiny new bathing suit!

I'm not going to show you a picture of me trying on my new suit, I know, you're disappointed, but life is about overcoming disappointment, so I'm sure you'll be okay.  However, here it is on a model:

Here is a complaint I have.  I feel comfortable saying now that I am a fully confirmed size 6.  Different brands, different stores, size 6 on the snug side, but size 8 is rather loose.  Oh, and I can now fit in my size 4 capris that I bought in college and haven't been able to wear in 6 years.  I really don't know why I still have them, but that's another issue. But there it is.  I said it, I'll stand behind it.  I am now a size 6.

Why is it, then, that for the most part, I need a size 10 or large bathing suit bottom???  Technically, the bottom is on the looser side, but the medium felt like I was trying to squeeze myself into sausage tubing and it wasn't going well.  I don't think this is fair.  It seems bathing suits in general are surprised by the girth of my thighs in a way that jeans are not.  Or maybe I'm just more comfortable if the suit is a little big rather than a little small.  Either way.  I'm a small/medium top and a medium/large bottom.

Back to my purchase:  It definitely isn't what I think of when I think "bathing suit".  It's loose, lots of material, and honestly, the top feels completely comfortable as a shirt.  I chose this one because I decided that, if society is going more conservative bathing suit wise, I should run with that.  And also, I really feel comfortable in this suit. I feel about as not-self conscious as I have ever felt while wearing swimwear.  Hopefully this will significantly minimize the discomfort of that most terrifying of all bathing suit moments.  Now if only I can remember to keep my legs fake tanned and shaved, I may survive this swimsuit season!!

Friday, May 13, 2011

Bathing suit season.

Bathing suit season.  Ugh.  HATEHATEHATEHATEHATE.  I haven't gone bathing suit shopping in about 3 years (again, HATEHATEHATEHATE), so I find myself in a place where every one I own is either too big, falling to pieces, or just looks absolutely, body-morphingly-weird on me now.  But summer is approaching, and we're going on our little vacation in a week and a half, and well, I thought it might be time for a new swim suit.

This is the only bathing suit picture I've ever allowed to be seen by anyone ever.  I think it works for me because 1) I'm really tan.  Tan looks skinnier.  And I think the bright white suit even enhances the tan-ness.  2) The picture shows enough to say, "this is me in a bathing suit" while I'm still subtly covering the worst of my belly, and my thighs are completely out of scene.  And 3)  Well, it was my honeymoon. We were snorkeling in Mexico.  Just an awesome day, that I don't mind reliving from time to time.

Now, the bright side is that I currently way a good 5+ pounds less than I did in that picture.  My arm is definitely thicker in this picture than it currently is on my body.  The down sides are that I am now frighteningly pasty everywhere except for my shoulders, and that I've had a kid.  Stretch marks, sagginess.  A general recomposition of the lower abdomen and, for some inexplicable reason, the butt.

It is for this reason that I'm taking a little bit more time and consideration in the choosing of my next bathing suit.  What to wear, what to wear?

First answer, of course, is a one piece.  Why not?  They are the suit made for pale saggy bellies.  Lots of coverage... ish.  Because apparently, my torso is a bit long and my chest a bit high for every one piece I've ever tried on.  Every moment I spend in a one piece has felt like I'm a mere second suddenly and accidentally exposing myself to the masses.  Plus, there's the whole issue with completely undressing to use the restroom that I'm not a fan of.

So one piece is probably out.  And what's society's answer to that?  Why, the tankini of course!  a two piece with nearly the coverage of a one piece!  Who woulda thunk!  It's EXACTLY what they recommend to a lady trying to "cover up a little extra tummy", and for good reason.  I definitely carry all MY extra belly weight up near my rib cage, and not in the lower abdomen, the ONE PLACE most tankinis still show off.  News flash, tankini-inventors:  You're solution to belly fat seems to have been to HIGHLIGHT THE BELLY FAT.  What I need is a reverse tankini: a regular bikini top and bottoms that come up to the bottom of my rib cage.  Now THAT would work for me.

I've considered giving the swim-dress a try, we'll see.  Mostly that feels more like an inappropriately skimpy outfit than a bathing suit, but typically speaking, I'm willing to try anything that they recommend for Plus Sized ladies.  

How is this a swimsuit and not a terrifyingly revealing skanky-club dress?

Last option?  Well, I guess it would be find something I feel comfortable in, one piece, two piece, or twenty eight piece, and just rock it.  Because confidence is sexy, right?  Confidence looks exactly like rock hard abs?  

So off I go later today, store hopping some bathing suit departments.  Hopefully it won't be as terrifying as I'm pretty sure it will be.  Hopefully I can remember that it will look better when I add a little tan-in-a-can.  Hopefully...

Oh boy.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Momma needs a new pair of shoes!

In general I'm not terribly big "shoe" person.  Even in my chubbiest of days, when most women stop shopping for other clothes and channel their fashion obsessions toward extravagant accessories, giant purses, and showy footwear, I continued to find myself schlepping down the size 8 1/2 aisle at Payless.  I typically own one pair of black heels that I wear to work 90-something percent of the time, and then maybe a pair of boots.  Besides that, my collection consists mainly of tennis shoes and flip flops.  I'm doing a little better at the moment, with a pair of shiny silver stilettos courtesy of my brother's wedding last August, and a dark brown pair of pumps that I can wear on days when walking isn't a big requirement; I bought them a month after having my daughter, and my feet were still all Hobbit-y, so now they're a full size too big and tend to slip off every third step or so.  It's a little annoying sure, but entertaining if you think of transportation as a game, and those shoes as Expert Level.

Those of you who know me, or have seen me, or have actually looked at those pictures I post will notice that I'm not what you might call a "fashionista".  This past week I wore a skirt to church that I believe was purchased in 1999.  Maybe 2000, not sure.  Definitely during high school.  And I'm cool with that, is the thing.  My current claim to fashion fame is my one pair of skinny jeans, and the fact that, scouts honor, I have NEVER worn them anywhere with tennis shoes.  I'm pretty sure that this is mostly a fashion faux pax, only acceptable on 12 year old girls and boys with Fallout Boy haircuts.

Anyway, the story here is that I broke another shoe.  This is a side effect of wearing the same cheap pair of shoes every single day for over a year: I lose all of my shoes the same way.  All of a sudden, I start to sound like a horse with one, and then eventually two shoes as those little rubber bits on the tip of the heel wear down, then apparently fall off completely.  Out of nowhere, I find myself walking on the tips of screws, which is not as scary as it sounds, stilettos themselves are fine preparation for this balancing act.

Right.  So for the time being, I'm a one shoed horse.  I expect the other rubber tip will slip soon, the second one never lasts more than a week or so after the first.  I've decided it's time for this year's first trip to Payless!  But there's a catch this time around:  My shoes will be my reward for getting below 145.  Cuz hey, I need a little extra motivation to lose more weight, and I need shoes.  It's a situation made in heaven.  And hey, it I'm extra good, I'll go a little crazy and try to hit one of these BOGO sales, and get a little something extra, maybe Espadrilles.  Oh the possibilities!!

Sunday, May 8, 2011

It's Momma Day!

Mother's day is here, and although my own child is completely unaware of this event, (yep, she has a tendency to be a little selfish like that), I've been thinking some about the day.  Honestly, I kind of think celebrating motherhood on a day like this is a little weird.  It's like, take every positive emotion you've ever experienced for the women in your life and channel it into beautiful poetry, cheesy hallmark products, and, of course, corsages.  Because nothing says "thanks for wiping my bottom all those years" like a flower pinned to your clothes.

Generally speaking, I wouldn't consider myself a terribly sentimental person.  (Go ahead, be shocked here.)  Of course I have my moments, a lot of the blame here goes to my kid, as she is most certainly responsible for quadrupling the frequency of these.  But truthfully, things like those flowery framed statements "Always kiss me goodnight" or "Home is where your heart bursts out in feeling with mushy perfect beautiful family lovey-loveiness that would make the Brady Bunch feel like the Manson family", well, let's just say there's a lot of eye rolling and dry-heaving involved there.  Oh, and those Facebook status things, "repost this if you are or love or know or met once at a party a '24/7' mom", oye.  I think I'm getting a migraine.

The truth is, as an aspect of my lack of sentimentality, I also have a tendency to not view many things through rose colored glasses.  There's no perfect person, so there's perfect family, perfect relationship, and despite what all the marketing leads you to believe ::Gasp:: no perfect mom.

Now, I love my mom.  I think she did a pretty great job.  We have a strong relationship, we've gone through things, we've learned, we've both done good, and we've both made some mistakes.  And I LOVE being a mom.  And just like my own mom, I think I'm doing okay, I'm learning, I do some things well, and I make mistakes.  Contrary to those viral facebook posts and every Mother's Day card I've ever seen (oh GOSH you have no idea how I hate those cards and there blatant and pathetic attempts at tear-jerking) I've never met a perfect mom, and I'm not going to be a perfect mom. I'm going to do my very best, and then I'll pay the therapy bill to clean up whatever messes I make.  But the point is, I'm going to be humble enough to accept that I will (and have) made those messes.  I'm going to work hard to be a good mom, but I'm not going to assume that motherhood is somehow magical or miraculous and use it to elevate myself to some sort of glowing sainthood.

Of course, that's not to say I'm going to turn down a little extra attention and pampering from the hubs.  I've cleaned up enough poop out of places where poop was never meant to be already.  There's just no way I'd deny an excuse to take a day off.

Happy Motherhood y'all!

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Why I'm going to get a divorce.

This morning I weighed in around 146.5.  Not a ton of weight loss for this past month, but I'd been back up in the 148-151 range a lot lately, so I can't say I was disappointed.  Until I spoke with my husband.  Who apparently weighed 145 this morning.  Seriously?  SERIOUSLY??? So, I guess that's 44.5 pounds for me, and in the same time span, 10 pounds for Shane.  Stupid stupid skinny man.  And that's why we're gonna get a divorce.  Probably.  One day.  Then I'm gonna marry some big tubby dude, so that I can ALWAYS weigh less than my husband.  And life will be awesome.

Shane weighed like, 125, maybe 130 "after a big meal" when we met.  Shane is a twig person.  I weighed a healthy....ish 160 when we met.  I am not as much a twig person.  And although shortly after that I lost a bunch of weight, and Shane has been hanging out between 150 and 160 for the entirety of our marriage, it seems he'll always be the twig person here.  However, I have a feeling that there's something a bit more insidious going on here.

When I got down near the 160, and approached Shane's weight, I told him that once I weighed less than him, he'd have to carry me lots of places.  That's what married couples do, right?

But here's the thing.  Shane doesn't want to carry me places.  I guess he's thinking that, if he's going to have to do that, he'd rather me weigh 130 rather than 155, so for no apparent reason, and by no apparent means, he keeps losing weight.  Jerkface.  Maybe I'll have to sneak attack jump on him and break his little chicken legs.

Monday, May 2, 2011

Neurotic moment of the day

I have been singing in praise team lately, which has been a lot of fun for me.  I'm loving learning the CORRECT harmonies to a lot of my favorite songs, and getting to spend more time hanging out with awesome folks from church.  I sang again yesterday, and noticed that I have a tendency to slap my hand against my thigh with the beat, or with what I perceive to be the beat, or just spastically throughout a song. So having noticed this, today I had to try it at home, attempting to flex my leg muscles no more, no less than I would while on stage, to see how much this motion caused my thighs to jiggle.

This has been your neurotic moment of the day.  Join us tomorrow for: Summer's coming, and so are sleeveless shirts.  Time to never stop flexing those biceps!

P.S.-- Not too much.  Pleasantly surprised.  Probably only the first couple rows MAX could have noticed the chub-ripples.
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