Week 5: The Excuse Train

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Christ, I need to get my eyebrows done.

We are into Week 5!

Woo!

Last week, I hit the gym twice. Which is not something too exciting. Mike and I were going through some fun times with moving things around for his job so we were busy all last week and barely had a moment to breathe.

This week, I have hit the gym twice so far (taking today to do body weight exercises) and continue to rock Thursday as well as Friday, too.

I was talking to a friend this week about how they can’t find the willpower or motivation to go consecutively to workout. Let me tell you, friend.

If you think every single athlete in the world never misses a gym day, you are so incredibly wrong.

Remember, it’s okay if you miss. Don’t beat yourself up but don’t make it a habit. If you miss, just make the effort to go the next day. It takes 21 days to make a habit so you gotta keep on top of it and it’ll get easier, I promise. No one is perfect in any stretch. Just keep going!

Some tips for not missing the gym (Doesn’t work for everyone but if you want to try!):

  • Make it a meeting in your calendar. I live and die by my Planner and Google Calendar. If I see it, I know that it’s on my To-Do List.
  • Bargain with Yourself. Every day I go to the gym, I bargain with myself. I say, “If I go today, I’ll take off tomorrow.” I never take off tomorrow but I tell myself I will to motivate me.
  • Keep a Journal. When I really don’t want to go, I look back on my progress. I try to write in it here and there about what goals I achieved. How good I felt. It reminds me that going is better than not.
  • Count Down. I set a time specific to go the gym. I always go before rush so I don’t have to fight people for the machines. If I go at 2:00, I have a goal to get my day work done and housework so I can do it. “2 more hours. I am going to do laundry.” “One more hour. I got to start getting ready.” and then when it’s time, I have no distractions, work, or housework.
  • Singing Reminders. I am a terrible singer, but I have a song I sing when I am getting ready that is basically, “Go to the gym” over and over. I sing it when I put my clothes on, get in my car, and go. I am hearing it, saying it, experiencing it.
  • Rewards. I will admit I am not on top of this but when I remember, it helps. For every workout, I reward myself with $1. That way, when I get enough money and reap the benefits of working out, I can get a new workout item (clothes!).
  • Following Inspirational People on Instagram. While you may not be rockin’ Crossfit, I follow a few of their top athletes from Stacie Tovar to Julie Foucher (which is easy. She works out at my Cleveland Box). But, also, I have picked up some friends along the way. My friend Nicia is always rockin’ updates. When I am in a slump and I see that they have hit the gym, it sparks me to get moving.
  • Social Media Accountability. There was an article that a friend of mine posted that said those who post their workouts are sociopaths. Call me a sociopath, but it’s literally the most beneficial for me. I don’t post my workouts to say, “Look what I did” but instead, I post them to say, “I did this. I need to be held accountable.” I also sometimes will look back at it and go, “I didn’t want to go that day, but I did!”
  • Accountabilibuddy. My husband is mine (though he’s slid since changing jobs. But, that’ll change soon!) but sometimes I would check in with another CF’er and say, “Hey! I went to the gym today. When are you going next?” And you motivate each other that way. You don’t have to go to the same exact gym at the same exact time to have an accountabilibuddy.

You may even find your own way to motivate yourself. If it works, stick with it. You can do this. I know you can.

Week 3: Science!

So, got to the gym last week! Horray!

I have been really loving Planet Fitness if only because I get there, do my thing, and leave. It’s no fuss and I am loving it.

What I do need to invest in is a set of weights for home so that will be next paycheck. I considered a kettlebell but the 50# ones are insanely expensive so I am going to go with free weights instead.

This weekend, we had two of our friends visit from Madison, WI. It was an unhealthy eating experience, to say the least. But, I felt less guilty on Saturday when we walked 4 miles around the Field Museum

I always love museums. I don’t know why people don’t go more. Chicago actually has the entire month of February free for their museum circuit which is always a plus! I learned a lot and the Field Museum Tattoo Exhibit was definitely an awesome experience.

Bonus, one of our guests has a cousin who works in Public Relations so we got a sneak peak of the behind the scenes hallways, libraries, and science things!

Speaking of science, there’s an article going around my friends’ list currently and it is definitely one of my favorites. It shows a woman who did a ton of weightlifting, exercise, and eating healthy and how she is one pound difference from before to after.

Why am I against scales? Muscle weighs more than fat. This is not an opinion. It’s science. You may actually never meet your goal number especially if you’re doing weight training or lifting. 

This is probably the most normal situation, especially in Crossfit. The problem with scales is they are a tool, yes. But, I have too many friends who live by it. If you are gonna weigh yourself obsessively? Throw out your scale.

If you want to measure your weight loss, the best thing is a tape measure. If you cannot throw the scale away, I ask that you consider only weighing yourself once a week at the same time (I weigh myself every Monday at 2:00 PM at the gym because I don’t trust myself with a scale at home).

Above all, the most important advice I have learned through this is you have to love yourself, regardless of your weight and before you jump in, let me tell you why.

If I don’t love myself at my current weight, I won’t love myself at my goal weight. I am not here to tell you to stop working out or eating healthy. I want you to keep at it! But, remember – you’re the same person no matter how fit you are. 

I have a friend who has to be in a specific number. She’s fit, she looks great. However, if she gains one pound (even if it’s muscle), she freaks and goes on crash diets and works out until she’s so fatigued that she crashes.

Having a goal is awesome (mine is 70 lbs away!) but I have friends who live and die by a few pounds measured on a scale. You’ll kill yourself doing that. If you want to get healthier, I encourage you. If you want to hit a specific number and you can’t go above or under that number — you’re screwed, friend. 

Saying, “I would like to live a healthier lifestyle” is a good start. Saying, “I would like to look and feel healthier” is also good. Putting a number on that is going to crush you especially if you live and die by the scale. Pay more attention to how your clothes fit, how your run time gets better, or how you can lift heavier things. That’s progress. 

This week, I am going back to healthy eating and keeping up with my 3 times a week to the gym. Next blog? We make some new March goals!

Are you in a ditch, Meredith? Y/N

  • First and second week of January were dedicated to prepping for a huge convention in Milwaukee. We had a lot of things thrown at us (including, but not limited to – three of our staff members getting wicked sick) so it took me for quite the loop.
  • We have had visitors for three weekends in a row so constant cleaning.
  • Being a god damn activist. So, we are going to get a little political – so, hold onto your seats. After the election results, my entire heart and mind were confused, lost, and angry. So, I did what I learned I needed to do. Between throwing donations at Planned Parenthood and ACLU, calling my representatives every single day, I ran around collecting letters for marginalized friends, volunteering, creating artwork for #makeartnotwar, and making sure my marginalized friends feel as safe as I can make them every single day, and fighting fascism on the internet.
  • Feeling a little down? Anxiety, maybe? I have been completely sluggish (probably due to bad eating and lack of exercise) so we are gonna try this all over again.

Where does that leave our heroine?

Well, I talked to a health-nut friend of mine and I explained that I was hustling hard, eating healthy, and then December hit and I went downhill super quickly. I kept trying but I would slip.

She said, “You’re trying to do too much at once.”

And I always thought doing too much at once was a good thing. You get more done. When it comes to health? You can’t do this. People try to juggle 300 things from nothing and they end up failing because it’s too much. So, slow rolling back into routine and I’ll kick it up each month.

So, I am going to do resolutions/goals by month and not this long string of hopes and dreams that I can’t accomplish in a short period of time. So, revising my list for January, starting tomorrow:

  • 10k on my FitBit every single day, not just weekdays. This is pretty easy to accomplish.
  • Water intake has got to go back to a gallon. I have a nifty water bottle from Lesley and I just got to use it more.
  • Watching what I eat and recording it. Actually having meals and not skipping two to be starving at dinner.
  • Floor exercises in the morning and evening.
  • If I make it to Crossfit this month, great. If I don’t – I have to do an at home WOD.
  • Go back to accountability on Instagram.
  • Get 6-8 hours of sleep (This is the hardest thing to do but I am going to try)

Baby steps to get back into routine.

I gotta applaud Nicia who has fallen into a similar boat with me. It’s nice when you can read something and go, “You know what? Yeah. I feel you.” And it’s that level of closeness and understanding of sharing similar situations and knowing that you got each other to lean on. I know I can do this. I know Nicia can do this. I know we’re gonna kick ass together this year and I am really glad the internet brought us together. She’s rad AF.

Tomorrow, we start.

Good is not a thing you are, it’s a thing you do.

Get out there and vote, y’all! Tomorrow is the last day!

Onto fitness!

So, I have been doing the small meals every day and that seems to be going pretty well! Yesterday, however, I made the largest mistake.

We were out of food. This never ever happens. It was 12 midnight. We caved and got fast food. And mind you, not good fast food. McDonald’s. Which we gave up for seven years but it was the only thing open. Even with a grilled chicken salad, it still made me violently ill.

After being sick all morning, we vowed to never do that again. Never again have bare cabinets or just go to bed starving because why in the hell did we think this was a good idea.

I have had nothing to eat today because I am so sick from that. But, good news with gaining back my appetite. Mike is making green beans and pumpkin wheat ravioli tonight with a killer kale salad.

After we do the WOD. It doesn’t look terrible but y’all know how this goes. The easy looking ones are the literal worst.

This month at work, we have to have a coworker make a “morning workout routine” for us. I got Pauline, a yoga instructor. So she designed me a morning salutation workout. I am very excited to do it!

December, I am giving up alcohol. I want to see how drastic it affects my weight loss (I already know this answer). 

I am still training for Savage Race. Now with it being colder out, I gotta grab my cardio off the rower.

FitBit continues to go well. My sister is getting way more competitive and my friends are, too! It’s a good time every week.

And that’s about it for today, y’all.

From Flash to Ms. Marvel

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I would be lying if I said I have been rockin’ out these past few weeks.

With Carl out of communication, I had a long talk with Laura about what my next move would be. I gave it one last shot today and expressed my need for Carl to be my coach. If he says no? Then, I am on my own.

Justin let me read the first adventure of the new Ms. Marvel and I fell in love. So much so that I thought that I would change everything over to her. But, I waited. Now, more than ever this is the perfect time to get through it. Whether Carl chooses to be my Coach still or not, it’s time to really train to be a Superhero.

Ms. Marvel (specifically Kamala) wanted to be like Ms. Marvel and she got her wish. I always admire the superheroes that are ahead of me and strive to be like them. She’s quirky, she’s weird, and she can alter her physical form — which is what I am trying to do.

Next week? Macros and Crossfit with Pokemon Go and 10K steps in between.

 

Athlete Zero? More like Patient Zero.

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Last time we spoke, reader, I was about to journey on the road of quitting smoking.

Did I quit?

You bet I did. But, there was a very “fun” twist.

The stress I got from quitting forced me to get one of the worst stomach aches I have ever gone through. Five straight days of nausea, random nose bleeds, stomach pain (sometimes sharp), vomiting, and migraines. It came in waves, too. Half the day I felt super amazing and wonderful. The other half of the day I felt like I needed to go to the hospital.

The strangest part was when I went to Crossfit? I wasn’t sick. I didn’t get dizzy.

I was weaker, to be sure, but I didn’t feel like I was ill.

I went to the doctor on Friday and got some blood work done. The doctor was positive that I was getting sick from quitting smoking which I absolutely agreed with him. My blood work comes back tomorrow so we will see if there is anything odd. So far, my blood pressure has dropped below normal (due to quitting) and I might have a gluten intolerance though if I do it’ll be extremely minor. I’ll find out tomorrow for sure.

Also, they weighed me and I am 12 lbs down. I was so excited and the nurse was so confused when I said, “Oh yay! 12 down!” and threw my arms up in the air in the middle of the hallway. It was the best news I had gotten all week despite how gross I felt.

After my blood work, Mike took me out to lunch. We ran into my Head Coach who asked if we went to the gym on Friday. When we said we don’t usually go on Fridays, he convinced us to head over there. Again, I felt really good and sweat out a lot of the gross toxins that had been infecting me all week.

Today, I feel about 50% better. I am still a little dizzy when I stand and I am a little bit tired but I have cleaned the house and made a checklist of all my things I need to do. I have a busy week ahead but Crossfit is definitely on that list.

Here is to feeling better.

 

Quitting Smoking

I have tried to quit smoking twice now.

Did cold turkey once. Did vaping the second time. The second time, it stuck for three months and I dropped right back into it over a crazy drama filled explosion.

I talked to my friend Adam who told me of a book that his father read and once he put it down, he never touched another cigarette. Before I could order it, Adam mailed it to me.


If you wanna quit smoking, I highly recommend this book. It’s from an actual ex-smoker, not a doctor or someone to use scare tactics to get you to quit. Out of the 6 million quitters, he hasn’t been able to cure five people. This author also quit from smoking six packs a day which is way more than I do.

He’s realistic. He gets that quitting smoking is really difficult. But, he constantly asks one question:

Why do you smoke?

At first I was like, stress. It chills me out. To which, the next paragraph basically thwarted that idea. He stops a lot of tales from quitting makes you gain weight to all the reasons you smoke and how false it is. 

I needed to get this out not on social media but to my three readers here (hello three readers!)

The whole thing is mental. I just have to keep remembering that smoking doesn’t calm my stress. It gives me stress. Smoking isn’t cool. It’s disgusting.

Tomorrow is the day. You have to set a date for this. He encourages you to keep smoking till you finish the book (which I did) and then set a specific date in a low stress environment or where I would be tempted.

Today is my last day as I will be at a BBQ with friends who are smokers. 

I literally can’t run as hard at Crossfit. I hate the feeling. It ends tomorrow.