It’s my Big Writing Weekend, so I shouldn’t be blogging right now. In fact, I feel like I’m cheating on Hot Mess Hubby by doing this…because the Big Writing Weekend was his idea and my blog wasn’t what he was talking about.
I was born a writer. As early as I can remember, my teachers were calling my Mom to say “This kid’s a writer…please encourage it.” In fact, writing is what I turned to as a young woman when I finally quit dance and left The King.
There were no blogs back then. I wrote fiction. It gave me the freedom to explore what life would be like as someone else. I created characters who were all the wonderful things I thought I was not. Sometimes I created characters who were fictional representations of people I didn’t like…and I brought vengeance upon them. It’s wonderful therapy. And it’s cheap. And I can’t go to jail for throwing someone in front of an imaginary train.
Hot Mess Hubby is my biggest fan. Back before there was a blog, back before we were even dating…back when we were just pals…he would ask to read anything I wrote. He even enjoyed handing me weird writing challenges on the spot. I rose to every challenge, of course – including the time he challenged me to write a poem about his “turd bobb’in dog”. I wish I was making that up, but it’s true.
In fact, I made the mistake of telling Hot Mess Hubby about one particular Thanksgiving weekend when I was on my way home from the store and I was struck with an idea for a story. I went home and started writing…and four days later, I had 55,000 words. He’s never forgotten that story – and that’s lead to this “Big Writing Weekend” of mine.
I took Friday off of work and I’m off Monday for Memorial Day. The goal was to lock myself in our guest room and just start banging on the keys until creativity started to come out. The problem is that it’s been awhile since I’d tapped into my creativity in any meaningful way and I’m sort of…constipated.
Writing my blog is very different from writing fiction. This blog isn’t creative writing. To me, this blog is like we’re all pals in a coffee shop and I’m chatting away. Fiction is much harder – especially after so many years away from it. My gears are rusty. As I write this, I’ve only written 1,000 words since Friday morning. I knew I’d be slow and clunky at first, but that’s just sad!
I’m sure it’ll get better. Eventually.
In other news, my gym experience is going well. I’m going to write a whole post about it, but I’m proud to say that I made the right decision in choosing which gym to join and how to go about it. It probably sounds incredibly wimpy, but I’m up to 10 – 14 minutes on the elliptical trainer right now. My strategy isn’t focused so much on increasing my time as it is going every day. Every single day. I’m building a habit.
Also, I went in for a haircut this week and ended up donating my hair to Locks of Love. It’s much shorter than I planned, but I asked the stylist to show me how much she would have to take…and I decided that it was more important to sacrifice a little vanity and let my hair go to good use. It seemed a bigger crime to let my long hair go in the trash can when it could help make hair pieces for chronically ill children. So I let her hack it all off. I guess that’s one way to lose 10 inches, right?
Finally, I’m being terrorized…by the state bird of Texas. A family of Mockingbirds has nested somewhere in my yard or my neighbor’s yard – and the babies are learning to fly. I love animals and I enjoy watching birds, so this is technically a minor inconvenience – but I’m convinced that all my neighbors think I’m crazy because I’m forced to run from the front door to the car and vice versa.
Mommy and Daddy Mockingbird are quite protective of their babies…one of which waddled across my front lawn yesterday. Adorable…but the parents are dive-bombing me and everyone who walks close to our home or my neighbor’s home. When they’re not trying to kick my ass, I’m quite entertained by the show they put on as I watch safely from the living room windows. Don’t mess with Texas…and that includes our state bird.
I’ll be back soon with a full progress report from the gym. For now, it’s back to whatever this fiction thing is that I’m writing. I don’t know if it’s a short story or a book…right now I just need to unclog the pipes. Wish me luck!
When it comes to Pinterest, this is one Hot Mess pinner with seasoned experience – so I’m going to totally overshare, as is the grand tradition here at Hot Mess Princess. First, though, I have to pay a little homage to the pin I created that went quasi-viral…and that was the pin for my Motivation Marbles. Losing your marbles has never been this awesome.
Now, as for what I’ve pinned from others and actually tried? Here are the goodies I’ve found on Pinterest that have made the biggest impression on me:
Pinbusting’s shower scrubby thing - I have one in each shower and they work great. I highly recommend it, but if you’re married to a cave man like me you’ll need to constantly check to make sure he hasn’t knocked it down and left it to drain all over the shower floor. I love Hot Mess Hubby, but sometimes he makes me pro-nuclear.
Once Upon a Pedestal’s polka-dot cake - Yes, I made it. I bought the pans. I had to rewrite the directions in order because her blog post kind of skipped around a little and I’m super anal…and I decided to make a chocolate cake with mint flavored green polka dots. The results? Yummy!
Ramblings from the Sunshine State’s garlic butter bites – Okay, let me see how to put this eloquently….
Foodgasm! Seriously. Hands pounding on the table, moaning like a high-paid hooker…it’ll be like the deli scene from “When Harry Met Sally” if you make these.
I make them when my girlfriends come over. Multiple foodgasms! I don’t even need to say anymore. They’re easy to make and your house will smell gorgeous. They’re not healthy, though, so wear your stretchy pants…and workout the next day.
Smitten Kitchen’s crispy potato roast – Fail! Smells like potato heaven when it’s cooking, tastes like potato ass when it’s done. And yes, I followed the directions! I was sorely disappointed by this one. I’m amazed I wasn’t arrested for crimes against potatoes by the food police.
Dreadful Girl’s INdiscreet tampon cozies – I love my tampon cozy so much that I went back to her Etsy shop and bought one of her tissue cozies. Cramps still suck, but at least I get a giggle when I have to reach for a tampon…or have a booger.
And those, my friends, are the pins I chose to share with you today. Do you have pins to share? Comment here and tell me all about ‘em.
I’m back. I’ve survived another visit to the creepy podiatrist…and I am cast-free. Thank you!
Dr. Creepy has decided that I don’t have to wear the soft cast on my foot for the final week of my healing process – as long as I promise not to walk on it a lot. Or tap dance. I agree. I never want to wear that clicky, wobbly, Velcro monstrosity again.
So congratulations, me, on making it through my sixth stress fracture. Surely there’s some kind of badge or medal for this.
Now that I’m cast-free, I’m walk’in on the wild side. For the past several weeks, I’ve been deep in thought over whether I should join a gym. I hate gyms, really. Remember my last gym experience? Yeah, it’s not for me – but neither are stress fractures. I need to get my hands on (err, feet actually) a very low…or almost no…impact means of working out. That means one of three options: recumbent bike, swimming pool, or elliptical trainer.
The few remaining shreds of dignity that I have left require me to shun the recumbent bike. SHUN IT!! If you’ve ever been or are currently obese or (my favorite) morbidly obese, you probably already know what I’m talking about. For those of you who aren’t, I’ll be happy to explain.
Picture this: you lumber your obese body into the gym and sit down on the recumbent bike. You put your feet on the pedals in front of you and start to pedal. What happens? Your legs are pumping at the pedals – which is a very good thing – but the tops of your thighs are also bumping up against all that glorious fat on your mid-section. Oh, yes, it’s awesome – especially for girls with big boobs like me – because every pump of my legs sends my gut jiggling up, causing my boobs to ricochet off my gut and clock me under the chin. Cha-POW!!! So glamorous at the gym. And they wonder why more fat people don’t go.
I can’t do it. I just can’t do it. The recumbent bike is a self-esteem suck fest. You should have seen the look on my face when Hot Mess Hubby wanted to buy me a regular non-stationary recumbent bike so that we could ride bikes together on the path behind our house. He doesn’t understand the world of a fat person, certainly. I got all squeaky and Dr. Seuss on him.
I will not ride it at the gym, I will not ride it drinking gin, I will not ride it on the path, and shut up now or feel my wrath!
I’m actually serious. I’ve never had gin. And, obviously, I’m not a very good poet.
So the recumbent belly-boob-bounce house is out.
What’s next…swimming pool? Are you on drugs? No. Just no. Even if they let me wear shorts and a t-shirt in the pool. No. Even if I could wear a turtleneck and jeans in the pool. No.
That leaves the elliptical machine. And, since Hot Mess Hubby & I are on a Hot Mess Budget, that means the gym. There’s no way around it…we simply can’t afford to buy an expensive piece of gym equipment for the house.
The elliptical trainer and I have a bittersweet history. If you’ve ever been on one, you probably know what I mean. They kick me right in the booty. The first time I ever tried one, I was regularly walking 45 minutes a day at a pretty good clip and considered myself quite the badass for it. Got on the elliptical…lasted 9 minutes, after which I was huffing and puffing like, well…a fat girl.
Granted, the elliptical trainer makes you work much harder than regular walking. That’s a plus. I just wish it didn’t have to humble me in the process. But when it comes to low impact, this is the most logical choice for me. Makes me work harder, isn’t as hard on my feet. Win-win.
I finally decided on Lady of America fitness clubs. It’s the best decision for me. It’s on the way home from work. In fact, it’s on the street I drive down to get to my house…so I have no excuse not to go. If I go home first, I’ll be too distracted by all of life’s other crap. I have a plan that works for me: I change clothes at work so I’m ready to go to the gym. I drive home. I pull into the gym parking lot and go work out. Then I go home and take care of everything else.
The only thing that would make this more perfect is if I was a naturally fit person who didn’t need to workout…but apparently God thought this would be much more fun. :-)
So how am I doing? How long can I last on the elliptical? I’ll tell you very soon. For now, tell me how you solve your fitness problems. What challenges do you face and how do you overcome them?
When you share you help yourself, but you’re also helping others who will read your comments and identify with your struggles. So give it your best shot. I’m listening!
The absolute best body scrub ever…I use it in the shower after the gym. Just smelling the stuff makes me relaxed and less angry that I have to work off all this weight.
If you’re a regular participant on my Facebook fan page, you probably remember a day not too long ago when a Hot Mess Princess fan named Sarah thrilled us all with the news that she’d finally hit the 100 pounds lost milestone. Badass!
Many of us had a lot of fun patting Sarah on the back that day. It was like a ticker-tape parade on my Facebook fan page. With unicorns…and rainbows…and free kittens for everyone. Whenever one of my readers has a big announcement like that, I always try to share it because I know the power of the almighty “atta-girl”. I’m betting you do too. That moment when you know you’ve kicked major ass and you shout it to the heavens and share it with everyone you know…and everyone you know is happy and excited for you.
Yeah, that moment.
I’ve had a few. I’m sure you have too. We will all have them again…and again…as long as we keep pushing forward.
In a moment of pure genius (I don’t like to brag, but…) I got in touch with Sarah and asked if she would let me interview her for my blog. I’m a big believer in the fact that we all have to stick together. We have to lift each other up. In my case, that’ll take about five of you…but we all need a little help once in a while.
Seriously, though, we can do this. We can do this. Each and every one of us. And we don’t need special pills or diets. We don’t need to shake special crap on our food or buy thigh-master, butt-blaster exercise gadgets or start on a Monday. We need persistence and patience. We need to be as gentle and loving with ourselves as we are with our best friends. We need to realize that there is no quick fix that’s going to get us healthy…and we need to know in our hearts that we are worth all this trouble.
Sarah’s success is walk’in talk’in evidence of what is waiting for each of us just a little farther down the road. All we have to do is persevere one more second, one more minute, one more hour…one baby step at a time. So have faith in yourself, grab a cuppa, and read on.
HMP: How much have you lost?
Sarah: I’ve lost 104 lbs!!!
HMP: Wow…congrats! How long did that take you?
Sarah: I started seriously trying to lose weight right before Thanksgiving in 2011. So close to a year and a half.
HMP: Are you at your goal weight?
Sarah: I wish! lol. I still have another 82lbs to go.
HMP: What was the hard part of the process?
Sarah: Staying focused, keeping my sweet tooth in check, and learning to check my emotions.
HMP: What are your daily challenges and how do keep them under control?
Sarah: I still struggle controlling my eating habits. I have a bad habit of being an emotional eater. I suffer from Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) It impacts my life greatly. It can cause me to be very emotional and eat without thinking. To keep my emotional eating under control when I reach for food, healthy or not, I ask myself what are you feeling right now? I will sometimes write down my feelings so I can see I’m not hungry I’m dealing with this other issue. Whether its feeling depressed because something triggered me or anxious. I made a plan to work past my emotional eating and work on my mental well-being as well.
HMP: What was your proudest non-scale victory?
Sarah: When I could look at myself in the mirror naked. I know – gross, right? But when I was at my heaviest I couldn’t look at myself without wanting to cry. I was 326 pounds. I would turn my back to the mirror when getting ready to shower. Now I can look at myself and see the changes that are happening.
HMP: Do you have a support system at home?
Sarah: I have my two best friends. One close by and another a few hours away, they both keep me going when I struggle. Michelle walks with me and celebrates my victories no matter if it’s one pound or ten pounds. Andrew sends me supportive messages and reminds me only I can make the choice to change my body.
HMP: What is the hardest part of an average day for you…and why?
Sarah: When I’m winding down for the night, there is nothing I like more than ice cream before bed. I know have it once a month when I go out with Michelle. we walk for two hours then I get a small cone.
HMP: Ice cream, huh? We may be related. Did you ever back slide and gain weight back?
Sarah: I’ve gained back here and there. The most I’ve put back on was 10 lbs.
HMP: What did you do about it when you gained it back?
Sarah: To be honest at first I cried. I was distraught. Then I realize I made the choices that lead to me gaining the weight back. I worked hard to get it off and if I want to keep it off I had to keep working at it.
HMP: How is your life different now from the life you had at your top weight?
Sarah: I have more energy. I’m happier. I’m working toward being self-confident. I eat more fruits and veggies. I cut out soda all together. I don’t snack on a bag of peanut butter cups a few times a week.
HMP: What is your next goal? How will you get there?
Sarah: My next goal is to be at or under 200lbs by the start of the New Year. I’ve started some light weight training coupled with lots of cardio. My cardio includes walking and dancing like an idiot with my kids (best cardio ever!)
HMP: What is the one piece of wisdom you think your fellow Hot Mess’ers should take away from this article?
Sarah: That everyone has struggles. Everyone has highs and low. No one can change your body but you!
HMP: Is there anything else…any really great tidbit of advice that you’d like to share?
Sarah: Don’t change your body to be skinny. Change to be healthy. Don’t change for someone else. This journey is all about you! Taking care of you! Loving you! You’re not dieting, you’re making a life style change. Don’t deny yourself the one brownie you would really like to eat. Moderation is the key. Eat a brownie, not the pan. The road is different for all of us but we are all united to change our way of living so we can enjoy life to the fullest!! Whether you want to lose the last 5 lbs or have just begun your journey, know that you have taken the first step (and kicked its ass) by deciding its time to work on you. Again this is YOUR journey. I will cheer you on in spirit the whole way! Keep up the hard work!
I’m pretty sure I speak for everyone (except maybe that bunghole from Abercrombie & Fitch, but more on that later) when I say congratulations, Sarah…your success and bad-assedry are an inspiration to us all.
Let’s have a group hug with Sarah in the middle. She deserves it – and the rest of us could probably use a good squeeze as well. Comment here to post messages of praise and awe for Sarah…or questions. I’m sure she’d love to hear from her fellow Hot Mess’ers. Oh, and if you’re reading this via email, please note that if you reply to the email you’re reading it does not post here to the blog. Please click through to the blog and post a comment so Sarah hears you loud and clear.
I’ve had a lot of decisions to make over the past ten days or so. The biggest one looming over me right now is whether to walk in the Buffalo Boogie 5K.
I’ve talked about it with the Hot Mess Hubby and I’ve talked about it with my podiatrist and the overwhelming evidence says that walking in this 5K, whether it’s in regular shoes or a shoe and this horrible soft cast, is an incredibly bad idea.
Similarly, I am not going to rent a wheelchair to let others push me down the route. For several reasons. First, because this was about me accomplishing something special…and I’m not doing that if someone else is pushing me and I’m sitting on my ass. Second, this 5K is on a nature trail. A dirt trail. No way and I rolling a wheelchair on that.
I appreciate the support from Brenda and from Crystal, who signed up to walk with me. I’m incredibly touched by your support and friendship – and I’m deeply sorry that I won’t be able to walk in the 5K. But you get to decide what happens next.
If you don’t want to walk at all, I will reimburse you for your $18 entry fees.
If you do still want to walk, I will go to the event and cheer you on. I’ve already called the event coordinators to ensure that I don’t have to walk fair in this clumpy thing in order to get to the finish line. They’ll make special arrangements to let me park closer to the event if I go.
I will go and I will cheer…for you, my Hot Mess Sistahs. Just let me know what you want me to do. Refund or walk? No judging on my end. I’m the one who’s foot messed it up.
I feel absolutely terrible that it’s come to this. I hope you can find it in your hearts to forgive me. Even in this brace, I can’t walk a 5K with a stress fracture. It’s too painful.
I’m very sorry. Feel free to comment here and let me have it. I’ll listen.