Saturday, June 30, 2012

What I am Trying to do

This week I was lucky enough to get to have a yoga lesson with Olivia and dinner afterwards. I love Olivia and I have missed her so much. She lives in Boston and when she has been in NYC our schedules have just not jibed.

Tuesday night the planets aligned and I got my yoga on. It felt amazing to get a good stretch in. I also have been having such body negative thoughts lately that yoga was a good thing. The timing was good. Olivia also shares a similar interest in body image, what shapes it, what causes the struggles all that stuff. We often talk about it. I think we agree that when you don't just want to say super syrupy things to yourself like you're perfect and beautiful and it doesn't work for us. What is the in between then? I talked about this with Marisa as well and she mentioned that I am hyper focusing on my body much like I use food to not think about something else. Hmmmm...this does ring a bit true. I have some thoughts on what I might be avoiding. You know the whole what am I doing with my life thing...but Olivia and I were talking and she said something I thought was brilliant. She said when I look in the mirror I make myself see something positive, I make myself see someone who is thin. For the record Olivia is thin so this would not be an unrealistic sight to see. I 100% understand why she might not.

I started noticing post-surgery I got REALLY critical of myself. Maybe the timing was coincidental maybe not. I just know I started to get really harsh and mean to myself. I think a lot of women are guilty of saying if I could just have this, I would be happy. I know I have. I used to say if my arms were fixed I would be happy. If I did not have the wings I would be content and ask nothing else. What bullshit. Complete, total and utter BS. No one thing is ever going to fix it. I started criticizing my arm pit fat, I started grabbing anything I could and giving a big ughhhhhh over it. Uhm, hey Anna what's up? Why the not just crappy attitude but really hyper critical one? Bodies are not perfect. There is no such thing. I get this yet when I am not sure what to focus on, or how to deal with something I start making the pursuit of physical perfection my focus. I mean I am totally focused on that while making late night english muffins with butter spray and jelly. That's helpful. 

I am learning though if you choose to be you are never done. Your body is never perfect. You may never love each and every thing about it. That is okay. I give myself permission to not love it all, but I do have to not be mean to it. I do not however give myself permission to take out my fears, stresses and frustrations on it. I am choosing to see something positive in the mirror. I am choosing to see I am not perfect, never will be, and that is okay. In saying all that when I got ready to work out with Egon today this morning I thought well looky here I like what I see so I snapped a pic for when I don't. I may not be the size I want, the weight, or have the svelte arm pits I desire but I look strong, healthy, and ready to go work out. I am a-okay with that. 

it's boxing time 

Friday, June 29, 2012

When You Actually Care About McDonald's

I would not usually be so excited about a McDonald's commercial but my friend's band is the music in it!! Amazing! I am still about 12 years old with these sort of things. I wanna get all Buddy in Elf and yell I know him!

Tyler's the best, their band Earthy Babes is delightful, and if you wanna purchase le music it's on itunes, amazon, and the site below.

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Get it Together

Do you ever just wanna smack yourself and yell get it together woman? I do. Today is one of those days. I couldn't sleep last night and today I am a total mess. Geez louise Precious Flower, one night of poor sleeping and it all falls apart?

Of course this would coincide nicely with my entire body hurting from increased work outs, a planet that has settled on to my chin, really weird hair days, a tax payment (it physically hurt me to write that check) and just general grumpiness. I am not firing on all cylinders that is for sure and it's just past noon. Great.

I'm just going to hunker down and pray I can get through today without some sort of cataclysmic error, and have a tiny bit of energy for the gym tonight. All I am asking from you Thursday, please hear me.

Thursday, June 21, 2012

A Petite Bootcamp

I had my first training session with Egon last night and was pretty pleased with how my strength has stayed intact. That being said I tried to throw my arms up in an exercise we normally do and almost passed out. The arms still do not wish to do that.

I was talking to him about my current frustrations. Feeling self pressured about not being where I want to be yet, and having a hard time defining what live-able healthy is for me are the two big ones. I think a big thing I am struggling with is on some level I thought the arm surgery was going to change my life. I know that sounds a little nuts, and at first post surgery I seriously thought I could take over the world or at least a petite country. Now the euphoria is fading and I am seeing I am still me. I am still the same person, same problems, same struggles, just now without my wings. The instant confidence boost is no longer. If anything I feel worse then before and as big as when I started this whole weight loss process. It's been a weird body dysmorphic head trip.

The wings removal had always symbolized the end to me. When I could do that this process was over. The hardest truth I still struggle to face is it is never over. I look to events, weddings, vacations, holidays as motivators to stay on track. I set milestones, when I get to this size, get this done, or whatever, but what I still try to escape accepting is I have signed up for this the rest of my life. Being healthy is a day to day commitment. It is doing what is a healthy choice for yourself every single day in many areas of life. I get one down, going to be bed earlier or exercising regularly just for another to struggle and slide down in importance. I have still not learned how to juggle in a long term fashion.

All that being said and these realizations swirling around Egon proposed shaking things up. He said how about I write you a program to help you get as buff as you can for this wedding. I appreciated the offer and the help. He said it's 24 days, you can do it, and it might help with some of the mental stuff because I explained how much I was cracking under this self pressure to lose weight quickly. He wants me at the gym every day, doing some strength training on my own, eating cleanly and drinking only one day a week. All of that is pretty reasonable. He said obviously if you need a rest day take it, but my preference would be activity every day. He said it's just for the remaining 24 days it's not for your life, that would never be realistic or healthy long term. He also wanted no drinking at all but I balked at that explaining if you forbid it I will want it. If you allow it I will probably choose not to have it. He agreed to that and modified the plan.

I liked how he said this is a jump start and quick fix to some of what you have going on to prevent self sabotage and I am not suggesting it's how you should be living. Do I love the idea of working out every day? Not really. Do I love the idea of having something healthy to help me feel stronger when I do not and help me prioritize myself and what I want when feeling a little shaky about that? Absolutely. I would rather be at the gym, or going to bed early to get to the gym, and investing in myself then avoiding the issue at happy hour.

I want to use this time to see if avoiding alcohol and food helps me sort through some of the emotional swirl that I am currently unable to articulate. Clearing out some of the suppressors might help me with whatever still fuels and drives this stuff. Anytime I take some of that away I gain clarity. I need more clarity right now and that certainly can not be found with food or booze. That much I do have sorted out.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

24 Days

It's amazing how fast weddings sneak up. My friend Katie got engaged last 4th of July and her wedding is now in 24 days! Oh lordy am I excited but now it's so close and real. Now is when I am starting a strict regiment of applying self tanner religiously to avoid a ghostly palor, up'ing my gym time, and keeping the eating clean. I would love to put some outrageous goals out there, but lets be real I will put them out there just to rebel against them.

What is important to me and worth focusing on is a wedding is one day but the photos last a lifetime and feeling confident will be my best beauty tip. It does not matter how much weight I lose beforehand,  how tan I get or if I made it to the gym a million times or a bajillion. What matters is my best friend will be a married lady in 24 days and I can not wait for that. The rest is just a good way to make myself nuts and not focus on what's important. It's her day and I am there to help make it special not the be the spectacle.

Monday, June 18, 2012

When Little met Little

This weekend zoomed by in a blur. A delightful blur but one all the same. 

Friday I had a lady date with my friend Jen at the this place Public. Yowsa the food was good. Grilled scallops, mushroom tortellini with kale and black garlic sauce, delicious Pimm's cocktails with lychee, sticky toffee pudding, and rhubarb cobbler, for the record we split the desserts. Two desserts for two people is not much of a split is it now. The portions were the perfect size, but a dude would probably complain making it a great lady date spot. I made a wise decision post lady date and despite being invited out by a friend afterwards I went home. This was smart for multiple reasons, but the main ones are it preserved self respect, and minimized vodka consumption. I felt like I had this great time with Jen, and I needed to be up early the next day isn't that enough? Why go chase a questionable dude. Yes, the Friday night offer was a questionable dude. One who told me he thought he would be the perfect guy for me in 10 years. I am still not 100% clear on what that means, or who says that. He does and I guess that's all I need to know.  

Saturday caught up with my dear friend James in the park, then met Kimberly/Juice for mani's. We were pleased to have less paws more hands, seriously I was contemplating requesting cuticle skin graft. We tried to revive Juice from a late night with some Mexican and then cruised Urban Outfitters. I tried on a bunch of stuff that I swear felt like I was competing in a competition to see just how bad you can make yourself look in clothing...Not good, but I was pleased my wallet was safe. We wandered in the west village and then went to this bar Orient Express. Funnily enough the 29 year old lawyer had wanted to take me there, but it was closed the day we went out. I was happy to be there with Juice. I discovered my new favorite cocktail, a Danube. It's vodka, lime, and cucumber soda. Cucumber soda! I can't.

Sunday it was up and early and by early I mean 12:45pm because I left my phone on silent which keeps your alarm from working...whoops. I had a very important date with a 10 month old I adore. She loves dogs, and furry things in general so I brought Dumplin' over for a play date. Little meeting little was amazing. I could watch a chubby cheeked 10 month old react to a pup all day long. Dunplin loved the attention, the walk in the park, and the being carried by mom. She was still tired today. I rushed home from Brooklyn for a date with Gentleman #1. We saw Moonrise Kingdom which I hugely suggest, but I am also a Wes Anderson lover.

Ugh, so I am pretty sure it's a wrap for Gentlman #1. He is really great and I am very fond of him but I think we're meant to be friends. He's lovely but I just don't feel as excited about him as I would like to be. We're supposed to see each other tomorrow, we'll see what happens. I just have this sense that I am talking myself into it more than anything else. Not fair to either party but thems the chips sometimes.

P.S. I made this last week, it started airing in Times Square this week. 

This to. Bummer the center screen was out of commission.

Delicious Danube, forgot it also has fresh mint.

Excited Littles.

Hand flappings of joy and baby animal print leggings. I wanna steal her. 

Healthy vs. Social

There's a lot I am good at, but one thing I just can not seem to fully work out how to do is to consistently take good care of myself. I am just not so good at this. Post surgery it was easy. I felt pressured recovering and not working out to eat really healthy and take good care of myself. When it comes to just day to day life I am not great at it. It seems like without something else to focus on I am not great at consistently putting my own care first, and prioritized. I am not sure why this is, but have a feeling I am not going to really get where I want to go without working it out.

What I have been struggling with is keeping myself and my goals a priority and boredom eating. There's been way too many mindless nibbles here and there and it's showing. My clothes feel a little tight, I feel a little gross and just not feeling great about my body and my choices. For now I am focusing on it not spiraling. I feel bad already therefore let me do more to really make this feeling crappy really worth my while. So far so good at not heaping on more or beating myself up.

Last week I succeeded in being more accountable and present. I food journaled and I checked in. Where I was not loving things was I went out a lot. Wednesday through Saturday I had social obligations which is lots-o-fun and should not be off the schedule but I was a little worried about how it would impact me. I made healthier choices eating out, and I monitored my alcohol. I try to drink 2 times a week though and ended up drinking 4 times. Is it the end of the world? No. Does it impact my weight loss goals? Probably and that is a problem.

This week I have two social obligations on deck so I am going to focus on keeping my eating and drinking on track. I also need to be getting to the gym more often. I definitely have summer fever and just want to be out and about with friends but need to keep reminding myself that healthy goals and a social life are not mutually exclusive. I just need to figure out how to find a balance that takes both healthy and social me into account.

Sunday, June 10, 2012

How Does it Feel?

Remember D'Angelo? His abs in the "How Does it Feel" music video are tough to forget. I am a fan of his and was sad to hear of his decline. He recently has popped back on to the radar. He's lost weight, is making music again and generally cleaned up his act. Why am I talking about him? Well a he did an interview with Amy Wallace recently in GQ discussing the 11 years since that video came out.

Homeboy had a breakdown cause in part from being objectified. He discusses how the impact of that video and feeling like a piece of meat sent him down a horrible path. I do not doubt this, but as Lindy West points out in Jezebel's discussion of the article, that D'angelo being subjected to the objectification and scrutiny every one faces her whole life leading him into insanity is interesting. Yes it is. Very.

Objectification is never a good thing. I see it in myself sometimes walking down the street seeing a good looking guy and thinking nothing about who he is, but solely about what he looks like. My heart does not bleed for D'angelo. I think there was more at play that fueled a massive weight gain and cocaine fueled 11 year binge but it does make me wonder in general the role objectification has on some of our more self destructive behaviors.

I know for me the more male attention I get the more I struggle not to put weight back on. I am not 100% sure why I want to keep a heavy coat of weight on but part of me does. It's more a mental thing now then something I act on, but the impulse is there. While some people have the appearance of being more okay with offering up their appearance only I call shenanigans. It reminds me of a girl I went to high school with. She was beautiful. Absolutely without a doubt beautiful, and had a fabulous figure to match. Guys chased her, and she was pretty open sexually at a young age. We were talking about it once when we were about 15 and she said, "well it's not like the want to know me, I'd rather just give them what they want have some fun and then have them leave me alone." To do this day this statement still makes me a little sad. It's way too jaded for a 15 year old, and even at 15 I thought it was, at 31 I find it even more sad because she was not wrong necessarily. She was young, and did not know how to protect herself, and seek what she deserved and was being honest about how she saw things. She's married now, a talented playwright, and expecting a baby boy so she figured a thing out or two and that makes me happy for her and for anyone who spent a lot of time being told their value was their appearance.

Lola Versus

A quick note to say NYC'ers and LA'ers if you are looking for a movie to see please, please, please go see Lola Versus. My friend Daryl directed it and it's great. I am not just saying that because Daryl's also a delight.

Saturday, June 9, 2012

I Don't Wanna

I really don't want to work out today. I want to laze around as feral cheryl and stay in my jammies until I have to get ready for a birthday party but I am going to do it. I am going to work out because:

1. I will feel better.
2. I will have more fun tonight not feeling guilty about a skipped work out.
3. I am in a wedding in about a month and want to feel confident and good about myself and working out reinforces this.
4. I like how I look in spandex. A lot.
5. When I feel icky a good sweat helps.
6. My friend Lauren just sent her new summer mix and I can't wait to listen to it. It will be good workout music.
7. Tacos for my friend's birthday dinner will taste better knowing I burned some calories.

All that being said I should probably suit up.

Thursday, June 7, 2012

It Would Appear That I Am Now Old

Nashville was amazing. I am not going to lie 13 girls being in the same place + alcohol + bachelorette shenanigans had me worried. I thought for sure there was going to be some sort of meltdown. There were no meltdowns. There was however, a lot of cupcakes, booze, and southern food. I gained 4 pounds. FOUR! That is a surplus of 14,000 calories. Gross. I still feel a little exhausted and gross. I do however think some of it was from salt. I know, I know I say that every time I have a large weight gain but generally it has been true.

We started off Friday with a prosecco toast and a cupcake followed by a pulled pork lunch. Amazing. It was so great to get to hang with everyone in installments on Friday as the girls arrived. It's funny sometimes when you meet a good friend's friends. We are all very different but it makes absolute sense why we are close friends of Katie's. We're all a little kooky in our own ways, a lot of fun, and love Katie. We had all the right things to get along. Friday night we headed off to the Grand Ole Opry saw some country music. It was really cool because they broadcast a radio show at the same time. There was a 91 year old sparkly pocket cowboy who performed that I seriously need to find to carry with me always. He was adorable. After that off to dinner with more drinks. At this point after waking up at 5am most of us were toast. I look over at Katie at one point and her hair was all crazy, and I said come here let me fix you, she turns to me with the resignation of a little kid and says, please fix me, please. There was talk of another bar stop, and after party, something but Katie begged me to help get her to the hotel and into bed. I was zonked and happy to comply.

Saturday we were off to brunch. Most people started drinking there. I am not a good day drinker so I stayed away. We wondered around Nashville, tried on cowboy boots, stopped for an afternoon drink and to listen to some music and then happy hour. I seriously do not know how these girls do it. I just can not drink like that anymore, and I am not sure I ever could. Part of me is jealous and a little relieved. It's nice to be comfortable in your own limits and like nope not gonna do it. We headed back to the hotel to nap. Yes, to nap and then it was off again. We ate at this amazing restaurant. I had way too much sweet tea vodka and pimento cheese, and then out to music row. The bride to be was tuckered out and hella drunk by 1am so we went back to the hotel.

Sunday night was a parade of zombies to brunch and around Nashville. We looked like a good time had been had, but thankfully we were done and off to our homes. I had a great time and it was interesting being around all these smart, attractive, interesting girls and not feeling anxiety ridden. I had some concerns but overall I was just excited to get to know them. I did have some negative feelings about being one of the biggest girls and I think that contributed to my weekend of excess. I sort of was like well I'm already the biggest might as well do it up. In talking through this with Marisa she pointed out, that attitude while being triggered by a them only hurts me. I am learning I have new issues to work through that I will elaborate another time when it's clearer in my head. I am still mulling things over.

Monday I was a zombie and I felt bad because Gentleman #1 from ages ago invited me out. I just could not do it, plus I had a client dinner. I saw him Tuesday night and he's a real delight to be around. He's interesting, smart, funny, and I just feel sort of grounded in his company. He ended up coming over making me dinner, and we stayed up until 3am. So this week Monday and Wednesday have been zombie days. I got to work on that...

Prosecco Lounging

Sequinned pocket cowboy.

Had this not been $90 some friend of mine's kid would be in it. 

Oh my Nashville aren't you forward. 

Lots of lady chatter. 

I passed on these but went with a bolo with the petite chapeau. 

The bride to be in some finery and excited by cheap beano.
Seriously this was bought at the Dollar General and made her weekend. 

We clean up pretty good despite day drinking.