I Don't Ever Want to Play the Part of a Statistic on a Government Chart

(song: Invisible Sun/artist: The Police)

Good morning! Today is Memorial Day. Hubby is off work and I'm on my 30th day of my 41-day test-group extension. So far, we've had 10 sessions at Leandro's studio, and we'll have 6 more before our  final photoshoot and infomercial interview. So this means I ONLY HAVE 11 DAYS LEFT! Just 11 days of prepared meals, personal training and all the resources my heart desires. Come Monday, June 13, I'M ON MY OWN! And this gets me thinking, "What the hell am I going to do?!" Well guess what, I'm really not that freaked out. I mean, I was terrified as the end of April approached and I was facing life on my own, but this extension was exactly what I needed to ease into life on my own.

Now that we only see Leandro three times-a-week, I'm responsible for the other 4 days of the week. And I assure you, I am not sitting on my much-improved ass.

5.25.11 - my much-improved ass

My average week is:
Monday - One hour of cardio - either a 3.25 mile run in the park or a DVD, followed by weighted leg work at home. During my son's bath, I do Leandro's 18-minute ab workout DVD.
Tuesday - Leandro's studio. Ab DVD during toddler bathtime.
Wednesday - Leandro's studio. Ab DVD during toddler bathtime.
Thursday - Leandro's studio. Additional weighted leg work at home. Ab DVD during toddler bathtime.
Friday - One hour of cardio, followed by weighted leg work. Ab DVD at bathtime.
Saturday - 3.25 mile park run. Ab DVD.
Sunday - Move it Momma (bootcamp class) in the park OR one-hour Brazil Butt Lift DVD. Additional ab DVD and weighted leg work.

Catching my ab theme? During these last few days, I am religiously doing Leandro's "Tummy Tuck" DVD every day. I was doing it every other day, but during a workout last week, I inhaled just the right way and I saw the slightest hint of a developing six-pack. Seriously, it was just a hint, but that was just enough for me to kick it into high gear and push harder to burn the fat off those new muscles underneath. (Plus, Leandro told me to do the DVD every day and he knows I'll do anything he tells me to do.) Working out with an exposed midriff has proven to be very successful in helping me maintain core form and breathe properly. While I hate seeing the sagging skin during my plank exercises, I know that it's greatly improved my overall posture and is the reason my ab muscles are developing so quickly.

So it's safe to say I have a firm hold on my accountability outside of Leandro's studio. I'm still submitting weekly journals to Beachbody and Leandro, in which I document all of the work I do on my own. I also tell them about my food and any cheating. Speaking of which, I've been much  better about my nighttime snacking. It's SO hard to resist the urge to quietly pillage the snack cupboard after my son goes to bed, but I already know that I possess incredible willpower, so when that little voice says, "just a handful of chocolate animal crackers won't kill you", I tell it to shut up. Then I brush my teeth and stay out of the kitchen. Because that handful of chocolate animal crackers may only be 130 calories, but it's also 29 carbs and I know better than to delude myself into thinking that (a) I can stop at one serving and (b) calories are the only thing that matters. You can't have long-term success by only counting calories. If you aren't taking nutritional value - carbs, sugars, fiber, protein -  into account, you're not learning to live differently. You're simply losing weight temporarily. Anyone can lose weight by cutting calories. You only keep it off when you completely change your way of eating.

And in that vein, I decided to do a sweep of my pantry and fridge. Part of this process for me, has been educating myself about what I'm eating and what I'm feeding my family. Now that I have the cookbook published by the company that makes my meals, I'm shopping differently - like really reading labels - and not buying things with the idea that "my son can have this but I'll stay away from it". Why is it okay to give the sugary snacks to my son and not myself?  I bought several books about nutrition and am now making smarter choices when I shop.

I'm learning!
I'm not going to start making my son eat flax cakes, but I did decide to eliminate some of the higher sugar and carb content snacks we had in the pantry. For example, instead of the chocolate animal crackers, I bought these granola snacks which he loves and calls "gruh-ola cookies". They're low in sugar, high in hippie-esque grains and fiber, and meet his need for a sweet treat. When he asks for a treat, I offer sliced apples with honey-sweetened soy-nut butter or natural peanut butter - NO SUGAR or hydrogenated oil. He does love apple juice, but I've always diluted it with water so he doesn't get a sugar overload. He's getting 60/40 water to applejuice on average and doesn't really know the difference. On occasion he goes to a birthday party or a relative's house and gets high-octane juice, but he doesn't seem to notice the watered down version he gets at home. We're lucky to live in an era (and a city) of health-conscious parenting so it's easy to police what he's eating and drinking. Of course there will be the occasional cupcake or ice cream, but if it's occasional, it's a treat. if it's every day, IT'S A HABIT. And I'd rather he have a small portion real ice cream - with cream, sugar and milk, than a large portion of reduced fat, reduced calorie crap - with chemically altered mystery ingredients. Since he's a toddler, he's a picky eater, but he happily eats chicken, turkey meat and pork. He would live on ravioli and mac & cheese if he had a choice, but I've cut back on his pasta intake and increased his lean protein. Veggies are a tough sell for a little one, but I'll keep trying. In the meantime, he gets multi-vitamins daily.

Because I've had fresh meals made for me every day since February 23rd, I've become accustomed to small portions and frequent meals. I feel completely ready to go out into the "real world" and continue this way of healthy eating and living. I'm not afraid anymore! I have the tools I need to make the right choices for myself and for my family. During this extension, I've had "cheat meals" and even had a drink here and there. The difference is, I watch the portion of the meals, and I drink significantly less alcohol. I know what booze does to my body and I won't be controlled by urges or empty calories and sugar. I'll enjoy the meal and a glass or two of wine or beer, then I'll wake up the next day and get right back to the business of being healthy. I know I can do this.

I am loving my body these days, but will still have work to do on my thighs and abs when this test group ends. Because of years of  fat build-up on my thighs, I will have to continue my weighted leg work and cardio to combat some skin-sag due to rapid weightloss and to eliminate the remaining fat. The same goes for my belly. I've sort-of outgrown my skin and when I'm in a plank position, the skin on my stomach hangs down like...smooth, pink Silly Putty. It's not fat, it's skin...and it grosses me out. Don't get we wrong, it's not like it looks like a morbidly obese person that lost 400 pounds, but you can clearly see that some parts of my thighs are fat and some is sagging skin. When I'm wearing workout gear or regular clothes, you can't tell. But I know it's there and I want it gone! I've talked to Leandro endlessly and he believes - so that means I do too - that it will regain elasticity and become a part of the lean legs and abs I've dreamed of for so long. I KNOW I WILL ACHIEVE MY GOAL. I'm not worried about falling off the wagon and gaining my weight back or simply maintaining what I've already done. Maintenance only begins when I've reached my goal. And I'm so close...

I have a picture of my size 16 self on my refrigerator as a reminder of what I did to myself by abusing my body for so many years. For me, it's important to have that visual so I can congratulate myself on how far I've come. Some people like to delete all reminders of their fat past. Not me. I look at that fat girl every day, and think, "Never again." Then I start another great day of clean living. And it gets a little easier every day.

January 2009 -  Fat mommy sporting a size 16 at 193 pounds - NEVER AGAIN!

'cause Cheap is How I Feel

(song: 'cause Cheap is How I feel/Artist:Cowboy Junkies)

Last night I did something no one should on a Friday night - on Memorial Day weekend. I went to Target at Brooklyn's Atlantic Terminal station, the city's largest transit hub. Huge mistake. It was a colossal nightmare; People everywhere scrambling to buy God-knows-what for the three-day weekend. I only did this to myself because, suddenly Mother Nature decided to give us tropical weather, and it hit me that I have no summer clothes that fit! I know, I know...there are way worse problems, but my size 10 Land's End activity skorts from last year's summer "momdrobe" look ridiculous now. (As opposed to last year when they looked super stylish...) Since my family has an action packed outdoor weekend planned, I had to get some damn clothes. And I'm still not ready to invest a lot in new clothes because, let's face it, these thighs are shrinking, but they're still not "there" yet. So I left my son with hubby and decided to - as calmly as possible - brave the madness of Target on a Friday, at 5:00PM. 

Targhetto madness
I went into zen mode and made my way through the womens' clothing section, collecting every pair of of size 6 & 8 shorts that looked semi-decent. And then I stood on the three-mile-long fitting room line for what seemed like an eternity. I was also starving, which didn't help, but since I really had no other choice, I resisted the urge to get a giant pretzel at the in-store  snack bar. Finally making way to the front of the line with my 14 items, I entered my tiny fitting room with the allotted 6 items and began the dreaded trying-on stage. Why are shorts so SHORT!? Seriously, I've always hated shorts because of my ample thighs, so I usually wear skirts or skorts. Even with significantly less thigh fat, the shorts I tried on were so unflattering. Every bit of cellulite and fat seemed to flow right out of every pair. Ewww! I settled (and I do mean SETTLED) for a pair of white, size 8 Converse® shorts that will at least get me through the weekend. AT $25, they exceeded my budget, but were the only half-way decent shorts I found. I guess I do need to figure out what my summer mom-uniform is going to be. My legs are sort-of ready for shorts, but I need something longer than the hot-pants I tried on, and shorter than the uber-frumpy Merona® cargo capris that I tried, as they, combined with my newly shorter haircut, just screamed, I'M A MOM!

Don't do it moms!
Truthfully, I've always dreaded summer clothes shopping. Fat or thin, it's hard to feel cute when the humidity is at 100% and your shirt is nestled in the sweaty folds of your belly. Thankfully we'll be spending a lot of time near swimming pools and beaches, which means I'll get to wear a cover-up for much of the summer. As I do every year, I'll figure something out for the days I need real clothes. This year, I might actually pull off "cute"...

If You Don't Mind, I Will Beat on Your Behind

(song: What's the Matter Here/artist: 10,000 Maniacs) 
I'm adding the credit for my blog titles since I've gotten a lot of questions and feedback about my blog titles. Most of you have figured out that they're song lyrics. Some of you were naive enough to think I came up with them on my own. Bless yer hearts...

HI EVERYONE!! Have you missed me? Sorry for not blogging as regularly as I have in the past. We had a bit of nice weather here in New York, which means I can't justify leaving my sweet son in front of the the TV while I blog about my ass. And then we had back-to-back 5-day visits from my son's grandmothers. One of whom is the quintessential doting grandma that always arrives with tons of presents, never says no and gives my son every sugary nutrient-free snack he wants. The other, is my mom. They both stay in our office/man-cave, so my time at the computer is limited when we have guests. But now the Grandmas are gone, the crappy weather is back and I'm nestled at my desk, ready to tell you all about my experiences with Leandro in the final phase of the Brazil Butt Lift test group!

Wednesday 5.4.11 - Day 1 in The Butt Master's lair
This was the day that Leandro and I discussed the plan for the month and agreed that my thighs and abs are the most crucial areas of focus for the next 30 days. My extension partner Marissa* is there and we are pumped to get started and so excited we're "the chosen ones". Until we learn, there is yet another chosen one. Courtney* from the 8:30AM group is going to start training with us next week. Yay for Courtney, bleh for Marissa and me since Leandro's studio is tiny and only seems to have two of everything, but we smile and pretend it's not annoying.

Leandro, once again, tells us that he NEEDS TO SEE OUR BODIES. I heard his multiple times during the 9.5 week test group but was never willing to expose myself in a public setting. But now, it's just Leandro and his exclusive group of still-overweight-but-very-hardworking-and-had-amazing-results-in-the-first-two-months "winners", so I give the butt Master what he wants and I take off my damn shirt. Here you go Butt Master! Here's my flabby abs for you to see! Happy?! Marissa follows my lead and the two of us suck in our guts and get to work.

He starts us on a cardio warm-up - Marissa doing side shuffles on the treadmill, me doing jumping jacks on the trampoline while using 5-pound weights for a simultaneous shoulder press. This is my first experience watching my belly in the mirror while I exercise. It feels like day 1 of the test group. Every time I jumped, my belly fat rippled upward and practically made a boinging sound. 
 The good thing is, having to see my half-naked body, really makes me engage my abs and I am starting to see more definition as a result of this daily humiliation. So, while I hate the sight of my bouncing flesh, seeing it makes me work harder.

After 5 minutes, we switch stations and go for five more minutes. Then it's time to get serious.

First he puts each of us on the Cybex cable-weight machine for a series of tortuous thigh and butt work. (Because of our still-ample thighs, we learn that the Cybex series will be a part of our workout every day that we're with Leandro.) 

We started with the inner-thigh. 20 pounds for 50 reps.
Then we do the same weight and reps for the outer-thigh on the same leg.
Then we face the machine and do 40 reps at 30 pounds of straight-leg arabesques. (Sorry, couldn't find a picture.) Then we switch the weight to the other leg and repeat the series. My ass was throbbing after the arabesques! The good news is, we only have to do that series once. The bad news is, after we did it, we had to do traveling lunges with 25-pound dumbbells! I gasped and said I hadn't used more than the 15-pound dumbbells we used during the group class. Leandro smiled and said, "35s are coming honey!" Ay ay ay! 

We walked the length of the studio four times. My arms, hands and shoulders were shaking uncontrollably but I pushed hard and, thanks to my exposed belly, really used my core muscles to help maintain balance and form. I was dripping with sweat at this point. 

Then it was time for some light ankle weights for the side-lunge-knee-up series that we've done many times in the past. Those were followed by my favorite - the curtsy lunge. Then we got the mats out and put the super heavy weights on our ankles and got down to business with some leg lifts on the floor. This included inner and outer thigh lifts on our side: 15 double-count, 15 single-count, 30 pulsed. Straight leg lifts: 15 double-count, 15 single-count, 30 pulsed. Bent knee kick-backs: 15 double-count, 15 single-count, 30 pulsed. Marissa and I were moaning and sweating and so happy when it was over. Now that we can't hide among a group of 20+ people, we can't get away with half-assed form or prolonged water breaks. Thank God we only see Leandro three days a week! We're really going to need the recovery time....

5.12.11 - Extension day 3. Sweaty and bare-bellied..and really sucking it in...

*Names changed. Can't have these girls suing me when my blog gets published then optioned for a Lifetime movie...

Give Yourself Prudence, and Love Your Friends

Around the six-week point of the test group, I got an email from my friend Marie, congratulating me on my success thus far and asking me how my friends and family were reacting. At that point, the reactions were mostly positive, with the exception of one cousin that seemed incapable of saying anything - positive or negative - about the test group, my blog (which I know she reads) or my results. I explained to Marie that petty jealousy comes naturally to this particular relative so it really came as no surprise that she hadn't said anything. In fact, it's become quite comical that three months later, she hasn't uttered one word in my presence, even though everyone else in my family talks about it. Sadly, she comes from a long line of women that never congratulate each other so, in her case, I don't take it personally. 

Marie said that when she went through her own physical transformation a few years ago, she was met with a lot of hostility from people she had once considered friends. It got me thinking about a conversation I had with my beautiful, British friend Lynsey. She told me that while on a diet, a "frenemy" of hers made a snarky remark about her weight loss efforts. A back-handed compliment along the lines of "Look at you...having a go at losing weight..." You know those friends that patronize you when you start to feel good about yourself? The friends that love you when you're a little down, and will kick you if you dare try to get up. They need you to stay in your role as "dowdy, but pretty-enough friend". We all have these people in our lives. I'm slowly getting rid of mine...the ones I'm not related to at least.

A few weeks ago I went to a cocktail party/book signing for a writer friend of mine.  I don't see her very often, but we get along very well and our kids love each other. At the party, I encountered a group of women, whom I only see through the writer friend, but always enjoy being around. Friends-once-removed, if you will. Much to my surprise, they sort-of snubbed me. One of them very backhandedly complemented my success by saying "I'm impressed. I wish I had time to workout but my career makes it impossible for me to budget time for exercise." She really seemed to emphasize the word 'career' as a statement of her importance. Yeah, yeah I get it. You're super busy with your important career and I'm a vain and shallow housewife with too much free time. It wasn't as if I had entered the room by busting through a poster-size photo of myself before I lost weight.

I didn't even mention the test group! All I did was show up to support a friend. Minutes after the uber-busy career woman "congratulated" me, she gathered the other ladies and they huddled in a corner with their glasses of wine while I uncomfortably shuffled around alone, until the reading started. I felt like the new kid that no one plays with.

I had been warned by Marie and a few other fit friends that this would likely happen. Even though these women are not close friends, it was hurtful to be treated as an outcast. But here's the ironic twist: this is the same group of women that high-fived me when I first lost weight with Turbo Jam. They were (I thought) super impressed when I went from a size 16 to a size 12. Some of them even bought Turbo Jam! But when I went from a 12 to whatever size I am now, they were seemingly incapable of saying anything positive.  So it was totally okay for me to go from obese to frumpy, but not okay to ditch frumpy in favor of fit? I understand that my happiness touched the raw nerve of their insecurity and jealousy, but it still really hurt my feelings.

Frankly, I'd be super jealous if my friend got this amazing opportunity. I'd like to think I would take the honest route - as several of my true friends have - and say "I'm so jealous, but so happy for you!" (And girls, you can come to my house for booty workouts ANY time!) I certainly will think twice about the way I react to news that sparks my insecurity. If you can't be happy for someone you care about, what does that say about you? What is it you hate about yourself that makes you so angry when you see your friends happy? Why is it easier for you to hate others than to love yourself?
I've wasted a lot of years caring about the opinions of people that have never really been nice to me, or happy for me. And now I can honestly say, I don't give a damn what "those types" think of me. No one should apologize for being happy. I like me! I really really like me!!

Big Bottom, Drive Me Out of My Mind? How Could I Leave This Behind?

Today's title brought to you by Spinal Tap. (So mad at myself for not using that one 9 weeks ago...)

Oh my loyal readers, I am so sorry for the posting pause!  I have been busy with the various other things that occupy my life. You  know, I'm not just a woman trying to literally work her ass off. I'm a mom, a wife, a...oh that's pretty much it. But anyway...

I got my 60-day results (Which are really 65-day results, but who's counting?) and I'm pretty goddamn pleased with myself. So, in 65 days I lost:

  • 3" inches from my chest (bye bye boobs)
  • 3.5" inches from my waist
  • 4" inches from my waist at the belly button
  • 3.25" from my hipbone
  • 1.25 " from my left thigh
  • 1.5" from my right thigh
  • 1" inch from each arm
my butt lifted .5" (I'm sure this is a very scientific measurement)

I haven't really bought any new clothes except for a pair of running leggings that are a size 6 - woo hoo! But they're Lycra so let's not get too worked up. Yesterday I pulled an old size 8 dress out of my closet. It was a little roomy but not swallowing me, so I'm hovering in the 6/8 size range now.  Two years ago, I was a size 16! How freaking awesome is that?!

Now, you're probably thinking, "she must look amazing by now". And you're mostly right. I am extremely proud of my accomplishments and my current body exceeds the expectations I had when I walked into that audition on February 15. But (or should I say "butt"), if I've learned one thing from Leandro, it's DON'T SETTLE FOR LESS! Seriously, that's his tag line, his catchphrase, his schtick if you will. So even though I feel great and look a billion times better than I ever imagined, I see myself naked every day, and I know that I can be even better. And thankfully the Butt Master completely agrees! That's right, I GOT THE EXTENSION!!! I am officially in my bonus month of booty school! Now it feels like I'm a contestant in a fitness competition. I am in it to win it! 

Dare to dream
I had a pow wow with Leandro to discuss our plan of attack over the next month. We're focusing heavily on the stubborn thigh region, the flabby abs and my triceps. This battle won't be easy, but I will emerge victorious! I asked him about my abs. They are still quite...icky. I shed my tank top and really let him get in there and see what he's working with. He believes (and who am I to question fitness genius) that it's a combo of plain old fat and stretched skin from being very overweight and losing it faster than the skin could regain elasticity. He tells me he seen much worse, which is only mildly reassuring. I asked him how long, realistically, it might take for everything to fall into place, as it were. He replied simply, "Its gonna be gone in a month." I no longer doubt anything this insane man says, now that I'm a measly 6 pounds away from achieving the goal weight he set for me in February. If he believes it, I do too.

So the way this month will work is, I will go to Leandro's studio three-days-a-week for an hour-long session. I am partnered with another gal from my class. I didn't know her well during the group class, but she seemed nice and I'm extremely relieved that she has a similar body type so we can work together to achieve our goals. She's a little shorter than I am and a thousand times more graceful because she studied dance in her past life. I noticed her form in class and envied her grace during the curtsy lunges. 

The stakes are high because I feel pressure to get the most out of this bonus month as possible, but I am scared to death because I have accountability on the days I'm not with Leandro. YIKES! I'm still getting food - thank God! - so I don't have to worry about that yet, but I have to be faithful to working out on my "off days", and really watch my snack habit, which is at its worst after 7PM. Do not get me started on my raging sweet tooth...

Okay, there's more to the story, but I must go to bed. The weekend was long and involved a wee bit of "off program" food and drink, and I'm tired y'all. Now you know the good news, and the next phase of The Buttington Post has officially begun!

Thanks to all of my friends and family who have been so supportive and encouraging since I started this in February. It means so much to hear how proud you are. Especially in those moments when I feel like giving up. 

Return I Will, to Old Brazil

5.2.11 - The live workout taping

So today was the live taping of our group workout. It was the 8:30 girls and the 10:00 girls together, all dolled up in  bright colored, Brazilian inspired workout wear, per the instructions of the Butt Master's crew. We taped in a really nice loft space instead of our usual gym. I'm not actually sure if this will be part of a DVD or part of the infomercial. All I know is, I got to wear this super cute Lululemon tank top and have one more Butt Master group workout. It was all really fun and exciting, and kind of cool to see how the infomercial world works.
I'm in the way back, on the left in the blue top and black tights. Don't blink or you'll miss me.

When the World Is Running Down, You Make the Best of What's Still Around.

4.27-30.11 - The last workout and The 60-Day Photo shoot and life after Leandro

Part of the reason I have been absent from blogging, aside from legitimately being busy, is that I had a tough time accepting that the test group was over. My last class on Wednesday was so great and so sad for me. The energy in the room and intensity of the workout were both so high because of the finality of it all. It was an all-weight class, but I was sweating like it was non-stop cardio. When we finished our last set of abs at the end, I looked at the gorgeous blond Australian, whom I've come to know and really like over the course of this test group, and we both started crying. Equal parts sad and relieved that we wouldn't be coming in the next day for a brutal cardio workout. I hugged Leandro and thanked him for choosing me in February and for believing me in a way that I never have. I couldn't say goodbye to Jessica. I knew I'd see her the next day at my photo shoot, and I knew I couldn't talk to her without bursting into tears. She's made a hugely positive impact on my self-esteem and in my physical life. She's been my own personal cheerleader for the past 65 days and I will miss seeing her every day.

Leaving the gym for the last time, was terribly sad for me. I realize how much I love the routine of going to workout 5 days a week. It became like a job that I actually enjoyed. I won't miss the morning commute on the subway, but I will miss the workouts. And although I haven't made many friend in the class, (Not because I didn't want to, but more so that my home life is so different. Not a lot of time to socialize when you have to leave immediately following class to pick up your toddler at nursery school...) the group environment was key in making me push harder. Before this test group, I was content to exercise in the privacy of my home. Now, I need to be in a gym or a park, around other people with like-minded goals. I work harder when others are watching and I have more accountability. I like to pick a person and secretly compete with her or him so that I get the best workout. I'm driven...

Thursday: The first day of not going to the gym for Leandro's class...made me sad. After 48 group workouts at the gym, I felt so melancholy this morning. Like I had no purpose. But since I had my final photo shoot, I did at least get to see Jessica and a few of my fellow test subjects. The first thing to be done when I arrived was final measurements and weigh-in. I managed to lose half a pound since Tuesday's weigh-in, so my official 60-day weight is 143 pounds for a total weight-loss of 21 pounds! Not bad eh?

Day 1 - 164 lbs. & Day 35 - 149 lbs

Day 65 - 143 lbs and getting more toned by the day!

After Jessica weighed and measured me, I went to the wardrobe lady to don my Target bikini, then it was time to make my triumphant return to the rotating turntable! It's been 65 days since I had my humiliating rotisserie experience, and I can't wait to show the crew how far I've come. (Never mind how far I need to go, but I know there were some day-1 doubters in the room that will be surprised by my progress.) I am greeted by Marc, the director of the the turntable process. He's tall and looks like Sean Connery in the the movie "The Rock" - without the weapon, but he has the swagger of Jeff Bridges in "The Big Lebowski" - without the bottomless white Russian.

I admit, I have a bit of a crush on him so I'm a little awkward in his presence. And yeah, my husband does read my blog, but he's constantly telling that he's going to trade me in for a trophy wife some day, so he'll just have to deal with my declaration of fleeting admiration for the infomercial director. Maybe when my husband trades me in for a younger model, Marc would like a trophy wife...in her early to mid-40s. One man's trash...

So I take my place atop the rotating turntable and have my much-improved figure, filmed from every angle. It's still pretty mortifying, but less so than the first day. While I was being filmed on the turntable, Leandro walked into the studio. It was so wonderful to see him -  especially because I felt so sad about not being at the gym with my group. He looked so proud, which made me feel great. I felt simultaneous feelings of "Look what you helped me do!" and "I really hope that I get to keep working with you so I can be even better!" After the spinning portion ends, Marc the silver fox does a brief on-camera interview. He asked me a few questions about the program and how I feel about Leandro. I was so overwhelmed with emotions of happiness, excitement, fulfillment, pride...I told him that Leandro has changed my life for the better and I could never repay him for what he's done for me...and then I cried. And then I was dismissed. I changed back into my mom jeans and raced home to fetch my little boy. I left the studio feeling sad but looking forward to the live-taping of our group workout on Monday.

Friday was the first day in 65 days that I didn't go to a BBL-related class or appointment. I FEEL LOST. I feel like a little kid that got separated from the group on a field trip. I'm waiting for the teacher to find me so I can get back to my normal schedule. I wasn't prepared for how empty I would feel after this ended. I think it's a good sign that I would rather be exercising, but it's also a sign that I need to have a gym membership activated, group workouts/classes scheduled and my kitchen stocked with healthy foods so I don't feel like I'm in limbo like I do right now. Friday was also the last day of my daily meals. I felt so empty when I microwaved my rosemary chicken dinner, knowing it would be my last prepared meal from 5 Squares. We got the cookbook in our last delivery and I've vowed to start cooking from it right away.

Saturday started pretty good with my food choices; Protein shake for meal 1, egg white omelet for meal 2, chicken breast for meal 3...then I went to dinner with my husband. Here we are before we went out. God I make him look good right?

4.30.11 - Released into the wild and on my first post-test group outing with my hubby.
It was my first "off program" meal in 67 days (except for the birthday sushi in March) AND, my first drink(s). I gave up booze for the program and haven't had a drop to drink since February 20. Well, it was my anniversary and I celebrated as such. I had hoped to have no more than two glasses of wine - I failed. I had 1 cocktail, 3 glasses of wine and 2 glasses of champagne, spread over a time-frame of 5PM to 12AM. For dinner I ate an asparagus salad that was covered in a delicious dressing that I'm sure was not Leandro-approved. I had an equally delicious steak for dinner. I did NOT have dessert though. Does that count? Although the food was very rich, I ate smallish portions - left a lot on my plate. But the booze...killed me. I regret all those empty calories. I felt so crappy on Sunday. So I ate a bagel with lox spread for breakfast. Once you fall off the wagon, it's hard to drag your ass back onto it.And while my eating habits on Sunday weren't terrible after the bagel start, they weren't nearly as good as they have been with the ease of heating up fresh, healthy meals. I need to start cooking ASAP.

Okay, it's way past this mom's bedtime y'all. Tomorrow I'll tell you all about the live taping we did today. The final individual interviews are tomorrow and Wednesday. This is when we will privately be told our final measurement and given our "maintenance packages" and when they will reveal the winners of any and all prizes. I'm assuming they're doing this so they can film reactions to prizes. I'm still holding out hope for awesome news. It ain't over till the Butt Master says, "No more squats for you!"

Nighty night!

I Miss You

5.1.11 - Sunday

Hi blog fans. I'm still alive. I'll be brief...because I'm tired and it's my anniversary so I need to get back to my hubby ASAP. I promise to write more tomorrow...

We have a live taping tomorrow. This will either be marketed as a "bonus" live workout or an extra feature on one of the Brazil Butt Lift videos. Either way, I get one more workout with the Butt Master! Also, all measurements and weightloss numbers will be tallied so prizes will be announced. I CAN'T WAIT!!

Gotta go. You want a picture? Here I am 7 years ago, today. Happy as a I am right now.

Bye y'all.

May 1, 2004