About Me

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Formerly fat stay-at-home mom - turned fitness enthusiast and workout infomercial test-subject. Ive lost 60 pounds since 2009. My blog tells you how I did it and what I'm doing to keep it off. I hope you'll be inspired and have a laugh or two...

Thursday, February 16, 2017

I Keep Crawling Back To You

(song: Crawling Back To You/artist: Tom Petty) 

REJOICE! For I have seen Leandro! Almost five years to  the date of my first day in his test group, we reunited for a small group workout at his new studio. When Leandro sent a text message inviting me to come to class on Valentine's Day, my knee-jerk reply to him was, "I've gained so much weight, I hate for you to see me." But of course, I went. Leandro knows about the back surgery and my dad's death so he understands that fitness has been neither a priority nor a possibility for the past yearish. But once you've been a poster child for the The Butt Master's program, you're gonna feel a smidge self-concious when it all goes due south.

With Leandro and Gloria. Sweaty, already sore, so happy.

Walking into his studio and seeing him for the first time in almost two years was so joyful.  His sweet and welcoming smile was a  beautiful reminder of all the good in my life. We spent a few minutes hugging and catching up then we reviewed some modifications I would make in class. Leandro understands the neuropathy of and nuance of back surgery recovery and nerve damage so I felt very safe in his class. I pushed myself harder than he pushed me (Which was not the case when he was torturing me during the test group, m'kay?).

Oh my God, it was hard as hell, but it felt so good to be in his class again! And even though I weighed 20 pounds more than the 5 other women in the class (seriously, my left thigh was bigger than the perfectly sculpted butt in front of me), it didn't matter. It was the happiest I've felt in months. 

During the test group, Leandro had "sexy Thursday" classes, which involved us dressing up in Brazilian carnival-inspired outfits and dancing most of the class. The first time we did this, I literally cried. I was so self-conscious and uncoordinated, and I hated my body in every way. Five years and a lot of life experience later, I dance with the reckless abandon of a punch drunk toddler. Pure joy, and no fucks to give.  

Thursday, January 19, 2017

It Has Been Quite A Year

(song: Aperture/artist: Sleeping At Last)

It's a new year, y'all! Thank sweet Baby Jesus, 2016 is OVER!

I don't know who created this, but I love that person.

I rang in 2016 on a cane, then later in the year, my dad died. So, yeah, it pretty much sucked. I'm still dealing with all of that. Suffice it to say, I'm still sad and I still cry at least once a day (usually for less than 30 seconds, but occasionally the wave hits hard and it's a long, ugly-face cry), and I still struggle with my anger. I've got great support, and I'll get there. My feet are much better but I still have numbness in my shins and mild foot-drop in my right foot so my physical therapist advised against any running until I'm not a risk to myself. I've got great support, and I'll get there.

My goal for the new year is simply to keep getting better. Keep doing my physical therapy, stay in psychotherapy, eat healthy, exercise, be a good person/wife/mom, be patient...keep getting better. That seems like a good place to start, right? Oh, and I want to write more, eat less, lose weight, learn guitar, sing more, run again...but that's it!
But hey, despite all the sad shit that happened in 2016,  a lot of good came out of it. The trips to Georgia during my dad's illness afforded me the opportunity to strengthen and renew relationships. The experience healed a lot of lingering childhood angst.  The past year would have been impossible without the support of my southern sisters (and mamas), or their northern counterparts. I learned I have really good people. My affiliation with Achilles brought incredible new friendships into my life.

Jan 3 with my beloved Achilles Brooklyn family at NASDAQ's closing bell. An extraordinary start to the new year.

I joined a grief support group. I rediscovered the reason I moved NYC - I saw plays, concerts and dance performances. I participated in a race with a group of women I had never met in person. I participated in races even though I couldn't run. I learned to appreciate just being able to move. I learned to appreciate the little things. I listened, I talked, I laughed a lot.  

I don't know how 2017 will end for me, but I sure am happy with the way it's starting. My focus is forward and positive. One step at a time. 

A cane in January, a race on Thanksgiving. Not bad for almost a year. (Color scheme purely coincidental.)

Monday, November 7, 2016

So Ripe And Ready To Diminish And Deride

(song: Borderlines/artist: Joni Mitchell)

A few months ago a parenting acquaintance, let's call him Warren, asked for a favor. I was not able to help him out as I was in Georgia visiting my very sick father. Warren was pissed I could not fulfill his needs, so he did the mature thing and confronted me in a public space. As he walked towards me, all puffed up like a gamecock entering the ring, he said, "You said you could help me out, now you can't?!" His physical approach and his tone were so upsetting that I did the mature thing and started to cry. Like a fragile flower, I cowered, said something along the lines of "I'm so sorry. It's been such a tough time. I...." When he saw the tears, he responded with, "You are such a fucking drama queen".  And though the setting and the timing were terrible, it was these words - such a fucking drama queen - that hurt the most. I was so mad at myself for apologizing. I APOLOGIZED! I was so angry that I didn't stand up for myself. I allowed that bully to use intimidation and shame to diminish my feelings.

So I did what any good drama queen would do; I told all of my friends, my therapist, strangers on social media, most of my family, my cleaning lady...okay, not her, but you get the point. Because that's how this fucking drama queen deals with her hurt feelings. I told the story to a group of online friends (all women, of course) and asked them what being a drama queen meant to them.

Responses ranged from sassy quips like:
 " I believe the approved and appropriate riposte is “Fuck you!" "
 "Own who you are and tell him to fuck himself."
 "Next time somebody calls you that, stand up, and take a bow."  

I wish I had the moxie to channel my inner Designing Women.

To the more analytical:

"He totally crossed the line when he added the F word to his name-calling. Men frequently cannot deal with emotion, period. I find they get very uncomfortable when women are actually expressing their feelings." 

"...think about whether the person who is attacking isn't really just defending. Think about what you can meet with compassion instead of defensiveness. If you are secure in whether you are emoting too much or too little or your right to be a human being who sometimes goes too far in one or the other direction, it gets easier not to become reactive under such an accusation."
I agree with these too.  I do sometimes emote too much. There's nothing wrong with that.  The challenge for me is to be secure in my humanness, own my behavior, and not feel I have to apologize for being me. Warren behaved that way because my emotions made him uncomfortable. I am not excusing his caveman-like behavior, but understanding it is the key to not allowing it to negatively effect me. Railing against the Warrens of the world solves nothing. We need to change the narrative. In a perfect world, we would teach our children - girls AND boys -  the value of "letting it out" and help them find the right balance between emotional control and expression. Simple understanding. This is the first step in eliminating the culture of shame on both sides of the emotional spectrum. 

This seemed like a good place for an obvious graphic.