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She’s A Beauty! And She’s a Runner!

Mirna Fat Girl Running
Mirna Valerio – Inspiration!! Beauty Incarnate!

She’s a beast too. I dare you to run like this woman does. This made me feel so good this week. There are so many ghastly things in the world right now. There are so many people fighting, judging, killing and hating. There are people struggling for all kinds of reasons. This sweet woman though, she won my heart, my awe, my respect and my gratitude. I would love to thank her for putting beautiful vibes and great energy into the Continue reading “She’s A Beauty! And She’s a Runner!”

My Lats, My Lats, My Lats… Oh RATS!

secretFinally did an upper body workout yesterday. I can barely lift my arms to type. I love to feel sore, in a sick sort of way. It feels like I’ve done something. Hooray! However, driving might be an issue. Goodness me, though, seriously my lats? I hardly Continue reading “My Lats, My Lats, My Lats… Oh RATS!”

How Can This Possibly Work?

I started Body For Life today. I just want cookies. That is all.

Okay, no, it’s not all. I went to the gym yesterday to test the knee on the weights. I need to lift a LOT of weight on this program. I want to load that sled up with 45s and go. So, I got on the sled, and hubby said, “try it with no weight first.” I gave him a look. “Just to test it.” Really? Do I look like a wee delicate flower? Fine. I lifted,expletive and as I came down to 90° and started back in the other direction with “NO WEIGHT” it hurt. I decided that it just needed to warm up. I did a few more, “It hurts, doesn’t it?” Dammit. Yes, yes Continue reading “How Can This Possibly Work?”

Yoooo-Hooooo I’m Still Here, So’s My Monkey

A friend politely pointed out this week, and last week too, so I’ll take the hint, that I haven’t actually written a post since April. Uh… what? I have no idea what the heck she’s talking about. I write at least 2 posts a day; I admit, I write them in my head. I have so many excuses. Wanna hear them? What is it with humans and excuses anyway? My monkey is still right here. In fact, he grew a bit in the interim. F’ing fleabag. I’ve got excuses for that too, wanna hear them?

I’m busy. I’m hungry. I’m tired. I’m carefree, or careless? I don’t give a flying *ck. I’m still tired. Did I mention hungry, no wait, hangry? I’m happy. Lots of squirrel activity, for sure. Not just in the yard either… my brain has been hyperactive. So, yeah, I know these are lame. Sad. But, all are true, and none are true. Nothing stays the same for long. I can use one of the above excuses for about two seconds and then BAM, I’ve got another one.

La La La
La La La

There are some cool new things. I’ve started (gulp) voice lessons for one. Yes, that’s gonna require a full post all to itself. Suffice it to say, I love to sing… to myself. Well, to my hubs, who admits he’s tone deaf and that music just goes in one ear and out the other. (SQUIRREL, once on a long car trip, I was asleep. I awoke to find that my hubs was listening to music in Spanish. I mentioned that I was impressed that he could enjoy Spanish music, he looked at me quizzically, tilted his head and in his wee Irish accent smiled and said, “Och, so it is.”) So singing to him is like singing to the air. I sang all the time to my babies. They’re not babies anymore and they tend to shush me now. They used to love it. Anyway, my dad is a great singer. He’s got a lovely voice, always has. Music has been a big part of my life, and well, someday I’ll write the post I’ve already written (like a thousand times in my head) about music and how much joy it brings me. How we used to sit on the big ranch porch with aunts and uncles, cousins and guitars and sing and sing. I know a bunch of awesome old folk songs, and old country. I’ve got a few new things in my bag too! You know… progress and all that.

And even though when I say the words out loud, “I’m a bit shy” people tend to burst into raucous laughter spontaneously, it’s definitely a true statement. Well, about singing anyway. So, there’s that. I’ve even gone and “performed” with other students at a local cafe. We had a band! (A wee check off the old bucket list). I almost died of fright and embarrassment, but that’s another post entirely. So now, I’ve got a keyboard (thank you Craigslist), an amp, microphone, mic stand, guitar and a knack for driving my kids nuts with it all. I love to run into the living room, grab the mic and tell them to “Get UP!!!” or sometimes I even sing things like, “Hey, Hey, Hey, please feed the dogs. They’re hungry little hogs…” or whatever happens to come out, with me, you just never know!

My oldest son is home from college and we’ve started guitar lessons. Yep. I’ve got funny little callouses on myguitar finger tips. It feels weird to type. (Hey, put that up in my excuse paragraph… that’s a good one!) It’s not taking up that much time since I’m not a good practicer, but you know. I need to know how to chord so I can take my guitar on my women’s trip to Costa Rica in January for the evening bonfires and sing alongs. Oh, yeah!! My friend is leading Wellness Adventures to Costa Rica. You should totally check it out and consider one. I’ll be live blogging/posting/social media-ing the whole time. You’ll hear a lot about that one, so stay tuned.

To be fair, I have been writing a lot, but you know, real jobs. I’ve been writing lots of professional bios for a real estate company here. It’s been surprisingly fun and I’ve met some people that I just adore. They don’t realize they’ve got such great stories!

So, well, that’s just part of what’s going on. I’m back on the wagon with my eating. Sigh. 30 pound monkey’s gotta go. Ha! Maybe I should write a weight loss song. Oh hell, I’ve already done that in my head too. Okay, fine. My goal is to start blogging again. Here, and on Friday For Good… and AdVerb Creative. Do me a favor and check them out. If I’m not doing it. Ping me. Help me. I need to write. I’ve missed it. I’ve missed you too.

Taking A Bacon Break

baconYes, I’m braking for bacon! I’ve been on this Ideal Protein diet and I’ve done well! I love the way I feel eating low carb. However, the routine has grown stale. I’ve taken a leave of absence from my lovely coach and my IP way of life. I’m trying on the Low Carb, High Fat diet that so many people are having success with. Okay, it’s a glorified Adkins type diet, I admit, but well, my family really seems to like this one. My dad and brothers have had good success while on this. Have I mentioned I’m built like a football player? (grin) I’m just lucky that way. I like muscle, and it likes me. (so does fat, though… who am I kidding?)

Yesterday was my first day, and I’m trying to keep my carb intake under 30. It wasn’t hard. I’m eating bacon. “I’m a bacon-aterian”, as my son once announced when he was about 4. I’m taking that idea, and I’m running with it. I mean, for gosh sakes, who wouldn’t want to be a bacon-aterian.

The hardest part though, is getting over my fear of fat. No, I’m not scared of myself, but I’m sort of balking (okay I ate about 8 pieces of bacon yesterday) but in my head, I’m balking at ingesting fat. It seems so counter-intuitive. I will go have my blood work done soon just to be sure I’m not absolutely freaking my numbers out. The research says my numbers will get better, but well, (*blush*) they’re already good! Except that blasted scale number, that one’s still bad.

Anyone out there on a LCHF stint? Can you please chime in here? Tell me how great you’re doing with full fat cream, lots of butter and sour cream by the spoonful… please?

Being Good This Week… (Squirrel!!)

My Ideal Protein coach is desperately trying to get me back on track. I’ve got 8 pounds of the 10 T-giving to

Promising to BE GOOD!
Promising to BE GOOD!

Christmas pounds I gained, left to lose. Sigh. So, she snapped a photo of me in her office, eating a protein bar and actually writing it down. I admit, writing it down helps. So, I started out being good. You know what they say about “good intentions” and the road to hell and all that? So, my intentions are there. Really! I’ve written everything down, and guess what? Yep, that furry little animal with the fluffy tail, and/or the shiny something that caught my eye, well, yes, that distraction happened! It was a good distraction though. Does that count as part of my “being good” this week?

slainte!
slainte!

Our 8th wedding anniversary happened! That’s a fine and very good thing. We celebrated a day early, you know, to reminisce about the lovely rehearsal dinner in Costa Rica with our friends and family.

Yes, we went out to celebrate our rehearsal dinner. Why not? It was a lovely night 8 years ago! So, away we went, braving the madness that is South By Southwest happening right now in our town, to this meal at the Four Seasons. This particular celebratory meal, included a starter, drinks, main course, a couple of sides (one of them was a vegetable, in my defense. Brussels Sprouts… flash fried, but a veggie nonetheless) and a tower of doughnuts, piping hot with special sauce and ice cream. They also brought a plate of bon bons on the house with “Happy Anniversary” scripted in chocolate down the plate. I indulged, okay, over-indulged and enjoyed my favorite company, my lovely hubs. The food was not spectacular despite it’s spectacularly stupid price, and we both were underwhelmed. However, the company was perfect.

Then, on the anniversary of our actual wedding day, we decided to head out again. We are worth a two night binge. We are! This time, we were not disappointed with our local fare at Jack Allen’s kitchen. We started at the bar for our hour wait, where we met a lovely couple from Santa Cruz, California. While we were chatting, I realized that the hubby and I had picked out my engagement ring in Santa Cruz over 11 years ago! How serendipitous was that? They were about to celebrate their 48th anniversary, and I loved her still strong New York accent when she said, “Before you know it, you’ll be celebrating 48 too!” I’ll be well into my 80s by then, and I have no doubt, we’ll be celebrating then too!

Our meal was less than 1/3 the price of our rehearsal meal the night before and about a thousand times better. I exaggerate not. The steak was perfection, the salmon delicious and the drinks and dessert, well worth eating. The company was still the best part of the meal, but we learned our lesson. The Four Season’s just can’t keep up with native Austin cuisine. Lesson learned! So, though my good intentions got lost in my good times, my heart is full and happy. Belly too. Besides, who wouldn’t want to celebrate our beautiful Costa Rican beach wedding / jungle reception again and again.

Magical Costa Rican Wedding. Definitely worth celebrating over and over!!
Magical Costa Rican Wedding. Definitely worth celebrating over and over!!

I’m a lucky, lucky girl. My diet can restart now.

Good Is Good

so goodSo often, I find myself smacking these keys when I’m feeling feisty. Sometimes, I mean feisty in a bad way. I write when I’m frustrated, mad at myself, mad at the world, or just feeling tired of the battle. Today, I’m definitely feisty, but it’s all good! It’s sunny, 60 degrees and beautiful! I’m not mad! I lost a pound, I gained a pound of muscle, lost an inch or two and all that Monkey business. In total, I’m 30 something pounds lighter than I was last June. I feel pretty, and happy. I’m not there yet. That’s what this blog’s about, and so much of the time it’s a struggle. Today though, good is good.

Recently, I’ve kicked up my volunteerism a notch. I’ve joined a group called Impact Austin, a group of philanthropic women who give 5 very large grants to non-profits every year. I’ve accepted a position on a Board of Directors for a charity that serves kids and suddenly, I’m so happy! I’m busy as all get out, but it feels so good to do good. It always does, but man, when you hit your forties (or at least when I hit my 40s) I started to question what kind of differences I was making in the world. My day job is business development. I am paid to build relationships and so it’s kinda perfect for me. It’s natural and easy, and luckily for me, genuine. However, am I changing the world? Am I making a difference? Okay, okay, I know that yes, I definitely make a difference to the people I work with and the clients I call on. I’ll never forget the “I love to see you walk in our door. You are always such a ray of sunshine!” compliment thrown my way one day as I walked in and had a good laugh with a client. Those moments are gifts, but really, I can’t see that the world is a hugely different place because my clients saw my sunshiney face that day.

This other stuff though, it has made me feel so fulfilled, energetic and worthwhile. I feel like I’ve grown into my own, quite suddenly. My life has taken on a sense of purpose that seems slightly different, slightly more elevated, slightly more, well, better. Good. Life is good.

And good is good.

One Thing

If There's One Thing You Could Do...
One Thing. Every Day.

At a class the other day, if you can call it that, it was more a sales pitch about why you should spend $800 on their class, they did ask a really good question. What is the one thing that you could do every day in your business that would make a big difference if you actually did it daily? My brain answered it quickly for my day-job business, but then I immediately thought of my wee writing business. My one thing? Write every day. Maybe that means getting out of bed, and going directly to my computer. I could get a good hour in before my day job if I’d get up when I’m supposed to. I could do that. I will do that. I will write for an hour every day.

So, what might help me stay motivated when it comes to this damned monkey? I’ve found through experience, like my whole entire life’s experience, that I’m not good at goals. I’m just not great at setting a goal that takes awhile to reach. My ADD just whisks me, my emotions and my ambition/interest right away from those goals like the wind, more like a Cat 5 hurricane. My brain goes so fast, a goal I set last week (like to lose 50 pounds by whatever date) just gets left in the dust. Even when I’ve written it down, it becomes a memory quickly as if I formed that thought (and what a stupid thought it was) a thousand years ago. I’m better with short term goals, and immediate gratification. I’ve noticed that when I get on my scale every morning, my monkey is in my subconscious, under the attention deficit radar, and I tend to be a better eater the whole day through. There’s my one thing! When I come in to my computer, I’ll just stand up on that scale and face the music. I did it this morning. Let’s hope I don’t have a <squirrel> moment…

And, I liked having a fitbit, but mine was recalled. I’ve been waiting for the Apple Watch, but I’m thinking I want to have some serious reminder and motivation on my wrist again, or instant gratification? It’s not like my knee will let me go 10,000 steps right now, but don’t you think it’ll have that yellow ribbon on the finger effect? It might remind me to do my strength stuff on my knee daily. Or is that just an excuse to spend money?

SquirrelMoment…And there went my squirrel! I almost forgot to hit post because I was over on the REI website checking out the Fitbits! Some things never change. Now, hit Publish!

Battered, Bruised and Befuddled

The joy of hitting tennis balls has worn off (kinda) and the angst has returned. My knee is angry again. I hit for about 30 minutes on Sunday and not even an hour on Monday. As a result, my PT (befuddled as she is at my continued pain) battered the hell out of my quad and my scar tissue on my knee when I showed her where the pain was… and I mean battered, raked and pretty much tore it up. That was, by far and away, the most painful PT session I’ve had. That skinny (adorable, though) girl has strong fingers and I’ve got a leg full of bruises to prove it. She didn’t stop there either, I had quite a mess where the hamstrings and the adductors and other things I’m either mispronouncing or making up all come together at the inside area of my knee. And the fire went up the back of the leg and hamstrings too! And then there’s the scar, the little innocent looking half inch line. It was a mess and a colossal ball of fire. Think about someone taking an ice pick, a long rusty one, and jabbing it into your knee. No, not just jabbing straight in, consider the fact that they’re starting just above your knee, on the inside and stabbing longways to poke out the bottom of the same side. Yes, that picture just about does it. Now do that over and over again for a good 40 minutes, making a new stab hole with each stroke. Yes, I was brutalized! (Glad you could join me on that little fantastical foray of pain; the joys of a vivid imagination never cease.) Brutal!

Today, though the tissue is bruised and sore, it all seems to be moving better. I was told to do nothing on the knee for 24 hours, then start working on strengthening the quad (think wall sits, and static strength) which will help my hammies take a break. They’re pulling more than their weight right now to compensate.

…And speaking of weight. (squirrel!)Squirrel Close with Corn  I’ve not lost my Holiday 10 (none of it to be precise), and my monkey is now about 33 pounds. What’s even more discouraging is that when I recalculate my goal weight based on body fat percentage (here’s how to calculate) I’ve got an extra 10 to lose now. The reason is simply muscle atrophy. I had more muscle back when I started this journey. What I’m hoping is that I can rebuild what I’ve lost and maybe my goal will remain the same. No doubt I’ve lost a bunch of core muscles, as well as upper body because I’ve not done a ding-dang-thang for six months. Man, I just want to go back to bed now.

My team matches start in a couple of weeks. I’m going to have to play doubles! That’s fine! I’m good with that, because it’s fun and it’s tennis! Pain, schmain, this sh*t is getting old.

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