It’s Day 5 of 7 Days of Sanity…and, it’s true, I’m not wearing pants.
Calm down. Think rationally. Of course I’m not going to go running around my office completely uncovered. But this morning I didn’t slip on the typical frumpy, dumpy fat girl pants that I usually have to wear to work. And, no, for Heaven’s sake…I’m not wearing a skirt or a dress. Cankles, hello!
This morning, I put on (and zipped) the first pair of jeans I’ve worn in 2 years.
Our office is closed tomorrow for Good Friday, so today is our last day before the weekend. Fridays are always jeans day at the office. I don’t have a pair of size 32 jeans and I have refused to buy any because I have a whole bunch of size 30 clothes in my closet just waiting for me. As such, I’ve never worn jeans at this job. Unlike most offices, we don’t get to participate in Jeans Day unless we donate $5 for the designated charity for that week. Every Friday is kind of like a nagging little reminder that I’m a big fat fatty…because someone comes through the department to check and see who’s wearing jeans and who has to pay up. And…every Friday…I say “I’m not wearing jeans.” And every Friday, there’s this tiny little voice that reminds me that I’m not wearing jeans because I can’t fit into the ones in my closet. It’s something that makes me fight to stay positive. I tell that little voice to shut up…and I remind myself that I’m working on it.
Sure, I could have gone out to buy bigger jeans, but I have adamantly refused to buy bigger clothes for myself and I’m sticking to it. I’ve burned that bridge. In fact, I’ll show you what I did with my last pair of size 32 jeans…tomorrow. It’s pretty funny.
But today…I am incredibly proud to be the girl who’s lost 32 pounds and is wearing size 30 jeans at work. 32 marbles have gone plink, plink, plink in the jar. 187 marbles are waiting to be moved. And they will move. It’s all in my power.
I’ll leave you guys with this for today: me in my jeans at work. Still a big fat girl, I know…but working on it every day and moving forward no matter how hard my personal demons try to throw me off course. I’ve got this.
Today, I am a Hot Mess Bad Ass.
Hey, peeps! How are your 7 Days of Sanity going?
The scale stood firmly at 351 Monday morning (and also this morning), but that is a very good thing and I’ll tell you why in just a minute. Prepare yourselves for something dreadful and horrible…something unheard of in the Hot Mess world. Sunday, the Hot Mess Hubby took me to the movies…and I had movie theater popcorn! GASP!!!
I knew we were going to the movies, so I had a light breakfast. The movie started at 10:45 am. I planned to eat popcorn. It’s just one of the most inhumane things in the world to expect me to walk into a movie theater and not have popcorn. I should tell you that, although I’m a movie buff, I married a guy who thinks it is absolute torture to sit still in a dark theatre for an hour and a half…so I go to the movies about once a year. In fact, the last movie he took me to see was Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Part II…and only because I threatened to kill him if he didn’t. So if eat movie theater popcorn once a year…big deal, really. And yes…it had butter on it. Perfectly popped, partially hydrogenated evil in a box. And I ate it. And it was gooood.
We saw “The Hunger Games”, which I originally thought was a tell-all documentary about the diet industry. Katniss Everdeen and the wild game diet. Peeta, aka the Boy with the Bread…really, c’mon. A cute guy with carbs? How can I resist that??
Okay, I’m kidding…I knew what it was about. I’ve read all 3 books.
But back to my popcorn…
Like I said, I had a light breakfast with a chaser of movie theater popcorn at 10:45 am…and I didn’t even begin to feel hungry until 5 pm that night. I made a grilled turkey burger and some baked, seasoned fries and that was it. The next morning I got up and got on the scale…351. Good boy, Mr. Scale…good boy!
I was a little afraid that my partially hydrogenated tryst was going to make the scale flinch a little bit, but it didn’t. I win!! I worked out on the treadmill for 30 minutes on Sunday and 31 minutes on Monday. Tonight will be 32 minutes. Tomorrow will be 33. I’m going to work my way up to 45 minutes consistently this month. Next month, I’ll shoot for 60 minutes. Time to get serious about this exercise thing.
How’s everyone doing? Time to check in!!
Last week was National #2 Pencil Day. I meant to post this on the actual day, March 30th, but I was solely focused on my goal of hitting 349 by the end of the month and I completely lost track…sorry!!
Pencils are a far cry from my usual talk about scales, treadmills, and evil snack cakes, but the #2 pencil is actually very near and dear to my heart. In fact, I once tried to sharpen my regular ‘ol #2 pencil at work and nearly broke down when I was informed that we didn’t have a pencil sharpener! The receptionist/former stripper who was in charge of ordering our supplies would only order automatic pencils. I nearly freaked. Maybe that’s why I don’t miss working there.
I remember when automatic pencils came out and they were all the rage. I didn’t see it. I still don’t see it. And yes, I realize this is the digital age and pencils aren’t exactly a hot topic. I’m actually a bit of a techno junkie. I love technology – but when it comes to how I get my lead on, mechanical pencils just don’t do it for me.
I am a plain, regular, #2 pencil kind of girl. I usually write with a pen, but there are times – usually when the muses have left me and I’m searching for inspiration – when I must put pencil to paper. Getting back to basics helps me clear my head and get the creativity going again.
When I’m feeling particularly uninspired, writing with a pencil takes me back to simpler times. Nothing helps me gain clarity faster than the feeling of a #2 pencil, sharpened by hand, as it moves over paper. It takes me back to the days of elementary school, where I sat like a perfect little lady in Miss Vanderkam’s 4th grade class. I remember vividly the unbridled thrill I would get as she handed out what we called “story paper”. The front 3/4 was blank paper, the bottom 1/4 was that widely lined paper we all remember so well…which also continued on the back. This is the paper on which we were asked to create our masterpieces of literature.
As the math geeks groaned in horror, I was already pulling my beloved box of 64 crayons from my desk. That blank paper might have been intimidating to some, but to me it was a playground where I could do or be anything I wanted to.
I scratched out the story with my #2 pencil and then set about bringing it to life with my faithful box of crayons. There was never a day when I didn’t know what story to write on that paper. The creativity just switched on as soon as the paper landed in front of me. There was a world of inspiration in my 8 year old heart. Those blank pages brought me nothing but joy – and that is when the writer in me was born.
I wish I could talk to Ms. Vanderkam just one more time and tell her how very much I appreciate everything she did for me. I remember when she called a special parent-teacher conference with my mother and me. I thought perhaps I might be in trouble for daydreaming too much or for using the wrong shade of gray when I drew stormy clouds. I sat in the empty classroom next to my mother and watched my teacher show her story after story after story that I’d written with my #2 pencil – all masterpieces in her eyes.
I sat there, relieved that the reason for the conference wasn’t because I had unwittingly committed some kind of 4th grade fingerpaint faux pas, and listened like the good girl I was. They talked about how important it was to encourage me to write and be creative and I remember thinking how cool it was that there was something I was good at besides dressing my Barbie in color coordinating outfits (with handbags to match, thank you!). I walked out of the classroom with my mom and she hugged me as we walked to the car. It’s the first memory I have of feeling really proud of myself.
Over the years to come, I would use countless #2 pencils to pass notes to my girlfriends, take math tests (yuck), and even to write my first book – which I started in 7th grade and carried around in an orange folder discreetly marked “TOP SECRET” in big, black marker.
Today I live a decidedly more “grown up” life – and I occasionally get mired down in a world of grown-up concerns: politics, career, our finances, Hot Mess Hubby’s uncanny knack for getting food in the flatware drawer. Still today, so many years after I sat in Miss Vanderkam’s class, I know I can find a little simplicity and a lot of inspiration alive and well…and waiting for me at the tip of a #2 pencil.
Melissa Doug Storytelling Paper Pad (8.5″x11″)
A big, heartfelt thank you to the truly gifted educators out there who make children a priority each and every day. You give us all a foundation to build on for the rest of our lives.
Hello, my peeps!
True to my word, I’m starting another 7 Days of Sanity Challenge today.
Since December 15th, I’ve been building healthier habits and kicking a little ass…and I’ve dropped 30 pounds in 3 months with just old fashioned common sense. I’ve been losing about 10 pounds a month. Not bad for a fat girl, eh?
As you know, I missed my goal of hitting 349 by March 31st…by a dinky 2 pounds. My inner perfectionist is still cringing about it. However, the only way out is through for me…so onward I go, because I ultimately have faith that if I keep going forward I will hit my goal – and I’ll hit it faster if I increase my physical activity level, yes? Yes!!
That being said, those of you who are regular readers (and I love you for that!) know how I feel about the fitness gurus out there and all their ridiculous “fitspeak.”
Obviously, obese people aren’t avid exercisers…or we wouldn’t be obese, would we? No. Honestly, I think anyone who wants to develop a real healthy habit of exercising regularly should approach the task methodically. I don’t believe in jumping into something with the “no pain, no gain” mentality – especially if you can use any of the following words to describe it: brutal, shred, turbo, or…you guessed it…insanity.
I’m sure there are a lot of people out there who will disagree with me, but I know myself better than any of those people…and this I know for sure: I will not be successful starting a real habit if I cause myself so much pain that I’m waddling around like a truck stop hooker after a convoy rolls through town. I want to encourage myself to get more cardio and live a healthier lifestyle – and if I can’t lift my legs out of bed in the morning without screaming, well…that’s not going to give me any incentive to do it again.
Pain like that is going to do is send me straight for the couch, never to bend at the waist again. (Understand, I’m not talking about the normal discomfort that can come from using muscles you’re not used to working…I’m talking about going from completely sedentary to 90 minutes of extreme cardio insanity tap dance Zumba ninja moves and then limping in to work on crutches Monday morning.)
Enough with the extreme turbo insanity shred…BULLSHIT.
7 Days of Sanity is about starting a good, solid, healthy habit (or reinforcing something you’ve already started). Let’s be normal. I don’t want to be insane (some of my friends would argue that that ship has already sailed). I was used to no exercise in the beginning. Lately, I’ve exercised sporadically. Now it’s time to really dig in and make this a consistent habit. Here are my goals for this challenge:
Starting today, I will walk on my treadmill every day for at least 30 minutes. I will rest on the 8th day.
It’s so much simpler when there aren’t all kinds of rules, stipulations, and other crap to remember isn’t it? 7 days, 30 minutes a day…that’s it. I’m hoping to repeat this pattern twice more before the 7 Dwarfs of the Apocalypse come back and get me all bloated and crampy again.
What healthy habit would you like to start or reinforce? It doesn’t have to be exercise. Are you ready to join me for 7 Days of Sanity? It’s enough to help build a habit, but it’s not so daunting that it seems impossible. We can do 7 days, right? I know I can. Who’s with me?
Post a comment here if you’re joining the 7 Days of Sanity Challenge. Tell us what you’re going to focus on and how you’re going to do it. We’ll cheer each other on right here.
7 Days. We got this. Who’s with me?
My first scale non-victory today…I didn’t hit my goal of 349.
I kind of felt like that would be the case after waiting a week and a half for my new walking shoes to come in, immediately followed by a visit from the 7 Dwarfs of the Apocalypse. I know exactly what I need: another 7 Days of Sanity to kick off the next leg of my Battle of the Butt.
After the 7 Dwarfs of the Apocalypse departed on Monday, I got on the scale and it was hanging faithfully at 354 – so I felt good that all the water gain was gone. And this morning the scale is reading 351. 3 pounds is not a bad haul for 6 days!
I’m confident that I’ll be able to get to 349 by next week now that I’m working out again. And I’m going to have to push it a little extra hard in April if I’m going to make 339 by the end of the month. Those are my goals for the next month. Pretty big goals!
You know what this means, right? The first leg of 7 Days of Sanity starts TOMORROW! Who’s with me?
From Sunday, April 1 to Saturday, April 7 I will workout every single day for 30 minutes…and rest on the 8th. Then I’ll pick it up again…and so on. I will get there – and I’m sure it’ll be sooner than later.
There is a tiny little voice in my head right now that’s trying to beat me up for not hitting 349…and I just keep telling her to shut the hell up. If I listen to that voice, I’ll start giving up. Failure won’t be far behind. From the moment I started this, my plan of attack has always been to handle self-doubt, set backs, and self-loathing by running full steam ahead towards my goal. Years of drowning my sorrows in Little Debbies and pizza have shown me that the road behind me leads to nothing but pain and embarrassment.
Feel like a failure or not, it’s up to me. I’m not a failure. 30 pounds lost in 3 1/2 months is effing bad ass. :-) 349 will be mine soon enough.
Tomorrow I wake up and start the sanity. I also think I’m ready to try working out in the mornings again. For a time, I was too grumpy in the mornings…but now I think it might be good to start my mornings with something extremely positive…so I’m going to try that again. After all, what the hell do I have to be grumpy about?
I’ll tell you what: it felt really good to move some marbles this morning. Really good.