Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Not my normal schtick, but it's still me, I swears it.

I have to set aside talking about the size of my butt for just a minute (don't worry, we'll get back to ithat soon enough), because I just had a freaking LIFE CHANGING.... well... BUDGET CHANGING experience and I thought that yes, I have to share this with all the humans.

Husband and I have been Sprint customers since the dawn of time.  Because they were cheaper.  Because husband didn't want to lose the phone number he got when we were in college.  Because because because.

And our Sprint bill has gone up over time, (because that's how you thank long standing customers, I'm SURE) and we have now been paying $150 plus taxes and surcharges ($161 total) per month to use our two iPhone 4s's.  It felt ridiculous.  We need data plans for our jobs, but paying this much feels outrageous, doesn't it?  Like, how is this one thing that's getting continuously MORE EXPENSIVE to use?!  Isn't technology supposed to get cheaper over time?  Shouldn't competition somehow fix this ridiculous rise to make your cell phone bill look like a second freaking mortgage?  Save me, Capitalism!

And because the universe is a beautiful place, it turns out, that if you know where to look, there ARE other options.

We found Ting.  It uses Sprint service, and charges you for what you use, bumping you into slightly higher brackets based on your actual usage.  No overages.  No guesswork.  You just pay for what you use, and YES, you get to share your everything with all your devices.

So what does this mean for us?  For one, it means that we now have Ting services using the iPhones we have used for the past 2 years, and are still in great shape.  It means we don't have contracts, and since our contract was up this month anyway, it was a freebie.  (Though they do provide some fiduciary support for folks who need to get out of their current contracts.)

And most importantly, it means that instead of a $150 bill, based on our higher month's usage, we'll be paying about $45 a month.  Most months, lower than that.

Oh yeah, and when I called customer service to have them plug in Husband's parents as our refer-ers (we each get a $25 credit for that referral), a human answered the phone.  No service asking me to push 3 for help with my international wireless television service or push 7 if I'd rather speak in Cantonese (I would, thank you very much).  Just a super friendly guy from Toronto who says it's like, stupid cold there and he's crazy jealous of our 80 something degrees.  I almost died right there on the phone. I had no idea what to do.  I kept trying to shout account numbers and social security numbers and my mother's maiden name to see if that would direct me to the right Hold Time. I tried pushing a combination of numerals and pound signs until he had to ask me very politely to stop before he came to visit and take my phone away. Doncha know.*

So I'm sorry that I sound like an advertisement, but I like saving money (Lie. I LOOOVE saving money.) and when you find something great, it's good to share. I learned that once.

So here's a link if you wanna check it out for yourself.  And yeah, if you use that referral, we both get $25 bucks off and oooh how sweet that is.


And oh yeah. In advance, you are very welcome.

*That was a joke about Canada, eh.**
**So was that. Cuz he's from Canada. You get it.

Friday, March 21, 2014

GBA. DOMINATED. A month in review.


Woooooohoooooooo this has been a rough month.  30 straight days of exercises designed specifically to replace all my gooey gooness with rock solid muscles I'd never heard of before.  And folks, I freakin did it.

So to sum up, here's a list of today's fun-tivities:
70 Crunches
40 Boy Push-Ups
100 Leg Lifts
250 Squats

It's exciting to remember that, only 30 days ago, I could barely do 5 pushups.  30 days ago, I needed to take a break in the middle of my 25 leg lifts.  For serious, I can tell, I can SEE and FEEL the fact that I've built some amazing new muscles.  The top of my thighs feel like they were carved out of freakin MARBLE.  Sometimes I like to punch them to see how much they do not at all respond to getting punched.  But you can't punch my thighs.  That's not a meaningful measure for you.  So here's some facts and stuff about the last 30 days:

Distance lost around my:

Waist:  2.5 Inches
Belly:  2.5 Inches
Butt: 1.5 Inches
Thigh:  1 Inch
Upper Arm: 0.75 Inches

Weight Lost:

About 6 pounds

Another achievement unlocked: About a week and a half ago, I developed the ability to button my size 8 jeans without torturing either them or myself.  It's been very nice, learning to enjoy wearing jeans again.  I mean, those yoga pants (pictured below) have been pretty wonderful. Not complaining about the spectacular stretchy wonder of yoga pants.  But just the same, I definitely missed the jeans.

Now I'm not going to get all ridiculous and say that, in one month, I've gotten "bikini ready".  Goooosh no. Getting bikini ready would involve a great deal more weight loss and miracles.  But just the same, stuff happened.  More stuff than 6 pounds would lead you to believe.  Enough that, over the past few days, I've noticed.  Like, in the mirror.  And it's been good.

So, for the most dirty and honest review of the Guns Buns and Abs review, and for your viewing... just, viewing, here's me, day 1, day 30.

So, I'm loving my new muscles.  I'm loving feeling a bit more toned.  So even though these past 30 days have been TORTUROUS, I'm not ending.  Keep dieting.  Keep cardio-ing.  And keep doing these horrible muscle building activities until my "after" pictures would look smokin' hot in a bikini.

That's all for today folks, happy Friday!

Monday, March 10, 2014

Exercises. These things are important.

So I started this 30 day challenge to 1) Get super fit and hot and stuff, and 2) Review the exercise and tell you if it was crazy awesome or a crazy waste of time.

But I'm gonna go ahead and fail now.  Please.  Don't judge.  Just let me explain.

I'm not done.  Today I did day 19. I haven't missed a single rep, a single exercse, a single day.  I am a MAJOR Guns, Buns and Abs bad ass.  And I'm not ending.  I'll definitely finish the 30 days.  And I'll definitely continue doing these kinds of torturous exercises for horrible horrible days and weeks and months to come because A) Husband said a friendly thing about my derriere and it made me feel pretty oh so pretty, and B) I lost 1.75 inches from my waist in only 2 weeks of crunches, leg lifts, pushups, and squats.

So as of last Thursday, that's a total of 3.5 inches lost from my waist since January 1.  Done.  Poof.  Gonzo. Sayonara and vaya con Dios.  Just don't come back. 

Let's pause a moment and visualize 3.5 inches.  

Here ya go:

CAN YOU SEE THAT? And if anyone out there is thinking, "Sure, I can see it, BFD", to you I say IT IS A BIG FREAKING DEAL THANK YOU VERY MUCH. 3 1/2 inches is dramatic.  It means that over 10% of the distance around my waist is just, it's, well, it's just GONE!  And that, my friends, is nothing to sneeze at.

So, why am I quitting again?  Right.  I had a point.

Well, I'm losing inches.  That's for dang sure.  But for the first 2 weeks of  this plan, I lost zero pounds.  I know, I was probably eating between 1500-2000 calories instead of 1200.  I wasn't going to bed hungry.  And I wasn't doing any cardio.  I wanted to see what THIS exercise would do, all on its own.  And now I know:  It firms up muscles.  It helps your pants buckle, and it  helps those 3 1/2 inches leave your waist. It makes you strong, and it encourages your husband to say nice things about your butt.  But to lose pounds, it seems there's still no real trick.  Eat fewer calories. Burn more calories. And AAAARRRRRGGGGHH I definitely still need to lose pounds.

So I'm not so much quitting as I am... adding.  I'm adding in cardio. I'm going to bed hungry.  And sad.  And I think, I think, it's starting to work.  Well, I can button my jeans at least.  And the weight has begun to drop, albeit ever so slightly.

So there you have it, my sort of, half time, convoluted LOOKITSASQUIRREL! review of the Guns Buns and Abs exercise plan.  I'm getting better at all the things.  I also dread them all a little more each day.  But folks, if you're wondering if it's worth it, don't forget:
I took this picture with my toe.  Because I love you guys.  Also, I should totally invent photography yoga. I think there are uses.

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Happy belated March 1! Time for an update

Ow.  Exercising hurts like crazy.  But I think I'm getting better.  Gosh, I hope I'm getting better.

Today's work out:
60 Crunches
12 Pushups
130 Squats
85 Leg Lifts

There is no part of this anymore that doesn't hurt.  It's all horrible.  I started at 50 squats, and I used to be ok with that, and mostly okay with the crunches.  But today is day 13 of THE CHALLENGE, and, well, 130 squats.  That is more.  Everything is shaking and everything is hurting.  But it's okay, because I'm pretty sure it's like, a sexy kind of hurting.  So booyah.

Can I stop real quick and say that I haven't missed one single day since starting this challenge?  13  days straight, which means that some of those exercises have been done at 6am before getting ready  for work. I gotta say, Old Me is CRAZY impressed by Now Me.

I took my March 1 measurements and weight on March 1, but I decided to hoard them for a few days before sharing. Because I'm selfish. And, I suppose, unenthusiastic.

March 1 weigh in: 166.
Weight lost since February 1: 2 pounds
Weight lost since January 1: 10 pounds

Belly lost since February 1: 1 inch
Belly lost since January 1: 3 inches

Waist lost since February 1: 1.5 inches
Waist lost since January 1: 3.25 inches

It's progress.  The measurements make me happy, because you can SEE THOSE RIGHT IN YOUR FACE HOLES.  Even when the weight is dropping slowly, it's a reminder that when I'm skinny, I don't have to be a "fat skinny".  I'm gonna be "wear a bandana as a shirt skinny".  Or at the very least, "button my pants skinny".

Speaking of pants. I have been wearing my Size 8 jeans lately, and I think they look pretty good except for this tiny little thing, which is that I cannot button them.  No, that's not true.  I absolutely CAN button them, but I am an advocate for the ethical treatment of my favorite pair of jeans, and buttoning them almost certainly constitutes cruel and unusual punishment. So instead I do the rubber band trick that you're supposed to use when you're just a little bit pregnant, even though, of course, I am not just a little bit pregnant.  Free pass here: If anyone looks at me and THINKS I'm a little bit pregnant. I do not care.  I am not insulted.  I'll just blame my rubber band.

Happy belated March 1, Friends! Don't go too nuts with the green stuff this month. You're probably not Irish. And it just makes you look crazy.

Oh and  yes: I changed some things about the blog.  The weigh ins pages, and the design here.  I'm going for clean.  Sleek.  Sexy.  As minimalist in my page design as I intend to be in my pants size. HAAA. Okay. I'm done now.
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