Tag Archives: health

Hello Beautifuls

Finals week has finally come. My life for the next week will be reduced to little more than eating and staring at textbooks. And, as always, more yoga. Since I last wrote I believe I’ve maintained a steady 4 days/week and I’m fairly proud of that! I’ve started incorporating sequences from my Yoga Sequencing book when I don’t have a full hour and a half to devote to my primary series. I know it’s totally allowed to take a shorter Ashtanga practice, but I like doing these sequences because they incorporate poses I don’t get to do in primary. I can definitely see a significant improvement in arm strength over the past few weeks, which is odd because I haven’t necessarily done anything extra for my upper body. I suppose I am just now seeing a few new developments that have come from gradual strength development. Either way, I’m not complaining.

I also ran ten miles over four days this week! I’m proud of myself for getting four days in at the gym this week on top of four days of yoga. I don’t know where all this free time came from but I am thankful for it! I don’t see myself having this much time to devote to exercise next week, so I will probably just look to getting my four days of yoga in. That is more than good enough for me. I have a bad habit of getting disappointed in myself when I find the motivation/time to exercise more than usual and then can’t keep it up, but I am working towards realizing that I am putting effort in to my health to feel good about myself, not to achieve any sort of “goal.” There are no hard and fast rules for when I have to exercise or how often. I just need to do what makes me happy and what I have time for.

As always, my life has changed a bit since my last post. I am quitting my new job (I know, what’s wrong with me?) and I’m working at my bank again. I am happy with this decision, although I feel bad for not being able to keep a job AGAIN. I know it’s best for my professional and financial life, but I’ll be on the job hunt again after spring semester starts.

Anyway, this entire post is just for procrastination. There is only so much studying one can do at one time.

On Balance and Taking up Space

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I promise one day my life is going to be free enough for me to resume blogging regularly. I have at least two partially written posts in my drafts and I’m currently writing this at work. My internship ends in two and a half weeks and I start school in a little under a month. If all goes well I won’t be working during the fall semester, so things should slow down shortly. And thank God for it. I love my job and I am so appreciative of the opportunity to get this experience so early on in my (inevitable) banking career, but spending my summer working 40 hour weeks, not to mention working out 6 days a week (meaning waking up at 5:30 am on weekdays), has WORN ME OUT. I’m tired. I’m cranky. I’m sure Sam is counting down the days I have left to work because I know his patience for my attitude recently is running thin.

Something else that is not at all positively contributing to my mood is my (slight) weight gain. Back in Greece I rarely ate out, I was doing cardio almost every day and I was smoking almost a pack of cigarettes a day. Since I’ve been home I’ve transitioned into (what I think is) a much better lifestyle. Unfortunately, we can’t cook where we live now, but I am making sure to eat regular amounts at regular times (most of the time), I’ve incorporated a lot of weight lifting into my workout routine and Sam and I are quitting smoking. As many times as I tell myself I’m doing good things for my body, I can’t help but freak out that it has caused me to gain a little bit of weight. We’re talking 2-3 pounds here, nothing major, but when you’re in a situation where you’ve spent years and years trying to get to a certain weight, when you finally get there (and have the motivation to stay there), a few pounds is everything. I know, I know, how many times have I said I’m going to stop worrying about my weight? It’s a process, guys. I’m trying.

I am having a lot of trouble balancing my responsibilities and my, well, me. I feel like I’m always either at work or being a girlfriend or a daughter. Working out just seems like something I have to do and not something that brings me any kind of happiness or accomplishment. In general, I just feel sort of uncomfortable with my current situation. I think a lot of it has to do with the fact that I’m not living in my own place. Right now I spend the majority of my time on one half of my bed in Sam’s room. I don’t have any of my own friends in Memphis. I feel like I’m taking up space I don’t belong in.

The more I write about this the more it is clear to me that I have to believe that I am a person who deserves to take up space. That’s what it all comes down to, isn’t it? Why else am I so determined to continue losing weight? What would losing five more pounds bring me? Another pant size down or inch less around my waist? What good will it do me more than focusing on being happy, healthy and STRONG? I don’t understand why I continuously base my worth over how much space I don’t take up. I’m sure that has so much more to do with my feeling out of place than my actual situation.

…Still, I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t excited about living in my own house in Oxford. 8 Days!

Saturday Special: My first homemade baked good!

Today is a great day, everyone, for more reasons than one. The first one being that I successfully made banana nut muffins from scratch… and they are so damn delicious.

 

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This is my happy face.

 

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I used this recipe, but subbed sugar substitute and half the butter for fresh greek yogurt and added walnuts. They’re still pretty calorie heavy, and having them in my room is going to be a serious challenge (because they are SO GOOD), but I’m so proud of myself for having these turn out edible, much less something I actually ENJOY. The baking gods were smiling down upon me today. I really had no idea what I was doing. Prior to this, I had only ever made cakes with cake mix, and even then I’d only done that a few times. This is an exciting thing, because I do love baked goods, and making them at home with healthier ingredients will make eating them much less of a pain for me. 

BUT WAIT, THERE’S MORE! My celebration does not stop there! This morning I got an email from a regional bank in my area saying I was accepted for a two-summer internship that comes with a scholarship! This summer, I will be working at a branch close to my home, and next summer I will be working in their headquarters. Plus, it’s PAID. And 40 hours/week. I feel like I can FINALLY relax and stop stressing out about my money situation. I am always able to work at my high school job during my breaks because the manager there absolutely adores me, but I would work at most 30 hours per week and a typical week would be more like 20-24 hours. At minimum wage. So, internship and massive amounts of major-related experience aside, I’m going to be making a ton more money with this internship than I would at that job. I am on top of the world today.

All things considered (my run yesterday and the subsequent death of my poor legs, the fact that I am basically done with all the schoolwork I have for the next week and a half, and the fact that I might have been slightly hungover), I took the day off. No workout, no tracking calories, no passing glance at ANYTHING school related. I’m even ordering delivery for dinner for the first time in over a month. Luckily, Sundays are my typical rest day so I’m just switching these two days this week, meaning I’m not actually “skipping” a workout. The food situation is a completely different story, but I really do not care. I know rewarding yourself with food is not the best thing to do, but, again, I do not care. I’m going to hop back on the wagon tomorrow and continue pushing ahead. I’ve earned it, and I’m not going to feel guilty at all about enjoying being absolutely useless for one day.

The Picture that Changed a Life

I am about to share a photo that I never wanted any one else to see. It is the picture that inspired me to gain control of my life and finally not be the “bigger girl” I have been since I can remember. This picture was taken a little over a year ago, on my 20th birthday, making this the longest and most successful weight-loss attempt I have ever undertaken. I have been “dieting” and “trying to lose weight” on and off since high school, but I am now well under my 9th grade weight at this point. If you recall from my last post, this picture also inspired a lot of self-hatred and body image issues, a lot of which I’m still struggling with today, but I am so much happier and healthier than I was when I took this photo and started my journey to be the best me I can be. 🙂 So, no more stalling.

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It’s not a very good picture in terms of being able to tell how much I actually weigh, so I don’t know why this particular photo caused me so much pain. I have several other photos of me around the same time that make my weight much more obvious, and while they obviously suck to see, none of them affect me as badly as this one does. I think my face is what really bothered me the most. Here I am over 175 pounds. I’m 5’7″, so this is a considerable amount over the “healthy” weight range for BMI. This picture is still really hard for me to look at, considering all the emotions it caused in the following months.

Anyway, this was meant to be a happy post, not a depressing one. I’m looking forward now, not back. Here is what I look like today (excuse the terrible bed-head and messy room):

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Today was actually a surprisingly good “body” day for me. My measurements are finally creeping downward again after quitting keto. This picture honestly took me back for a second because it’s one of only a few that I can look at and say “damn, girl, you go.” The last time I checked, I weighed 135, but I imagine that went up a little bit from water weight. I’m trying not to care, especially since my measurements continue to go down. Plus, let’s be real here, I look damn good.

I also had another accomplishment today- my first outside run! I’ve been scouring through youtube for exercise videos for the past few weeks because I don’t want to get bored of doing the same ones over and over, but today I decided to take it outside. I’ve always been nervous to do any sort of exercise around other people. Here it is especially hard because so many people like to run along the boardwalk and I am in no way as in shape as most of the people I see out there. Today I just had to remind myself that I would probably never see any of those people ever again and that it didn’t matter if I looked like an idiot. I was actually surprised at how much running I could actually do (although there was also a fair amount of walking). I ran almost five miles (since I don’t have 3G on my phone I had to rely on google maps to tell me the distance) and afterwards I stopped on the boardwalk to do a little yoga before heading back.

So, there’s a little bit of my weight loss story. Fitness is something I am hoping to make a serious, permanent part of my life, so hopefully this won’t be the last of what I have to say on the matter.

Bad Blogger

Okay, this is my blog. I can do what I want. But I did miss posting a meal last Saturday and being gone for so long as made me feel pretty guilty. So here I am with a short update.

I quit keto. I did it for about a month. I wasn’t necessarily sick of it or bored of the food (although I was certainly getting to that point), but I was developing some seriously obsessive behaviors with tracking my calories. I found myself pushing to eat below my calorie limit and feeling the need to go for long walks if I got close or went over slightly. I said no to hanging out with my friends because I was afraid of eating something I shouldn’t. In general, I was afraid of messing it up. When I first started losing weight over a year ago, I wasn’t exactly doing it in the best or safest way. I’ve come a LONG way since then and to see myself start to fear food and attach guilt to eating again was very, very scary. So I stopped. And I felt guilty at first for “quitting,” but I know if I’m going to be happy with my weight, it’s not going to be with fear of food or an obsession with tracking every calorie I consume. 

Keto did make me very aware of everything I was eating before I started it. The few times I did go out, the amount of times I had to say no to something I wouldn’t have prior to starting was amazing. Cappuccinos, donuts, the snacks that come with the coffee and beer… It was a lot. So I am thankful that I have this new awareness of all the little things that really do add up after a while. I’ve added in carbs again but I’m staying away from pasta and potatoes and limiting refined sugar. I know it’s going to be hard for me to find a sustainable, healthy relationship with food, but I know that relationship isn’t going to include a complete ban on unhealthy food. Knowing me, it would lead to me eating every chocolate bar and cake in sight. I’m just learning how to say “no” when I need to while realizing that one midnight bougatsa isn’t going to instantly make me gain 20 pounds overnight. And truthfully, I’m not a large girl. I need to learn how to not-gain weight more than I learn to lose it. I’ve still been exercising 6x/week and I definitely plan to maintain that, well, indefinitely. This isn’t going to be something I figure out over night, but I will figure it out.

Anyway, that’s where I am right now. I’m about to be VERY busy and VERY boring, and that will probably lead to a lack of blog posts, but I will be back this weekend, hopefully with something as delicious as ever. I’m thinking I’m going to try my hand at baking.