There may have been a clog up in my email subscription doohicky…so if you didn’t get the announcement, or if you get two, please accept my apologies.
The fabulous Dreadful Girl is giving one of her handcrafted tampon/pad cozies to one lucky Hot Mess Princess reader! For details on how to enter the raffle, please go to this post on my blog:
Hot Mess Princess
Aunt Flo. The Curse. The Crimson Wave. Riding the Cotton Pony. That time of the month. Or, as we call it here in Hot Mess Princess land “The 7 Dwarfs of the Menstrual Apocalypse”. Y’all have been listening to me complain about my uterine terrors since I started this blog…it’s time you got something for it.
The first time I saw these amazingly hysterical “INdiscreet” pad & tampon cozies on Pinterest, I laughed my ass off. Created by crafty blogger Marigold Haske (aka Dreadful Girl), they’re the perfect combination of crafty and funny.
Aren’t these adorable? More sayings can be found in her Etsy shop.
These beautifully handcrafted, adorable cozies are in high demand…and now you can have your own because Dreadful Girl is graciously giving one of these away to a lucky Hot Mess Princess reader!
The winner will be able to choose from an available assortment of colors, fonts, and sayings that Marigold will tell you all about during the “OMG I can’t believe I won this awesome cozy!” portion of the raffle. :-)
If you don’t win, take heart. Marigold is uploading more inventory to her Etsy shop at 10 am PST today – so you should be able to snag one for yourself either way. In fact, Hot Mess Princess readers get a special discount. Enter coupon code HMP15 to get 15% off your order.
Entering the raffle is easy. Simply follow Dreadful Girl on any of the social media sites listed below (your choice…just click and go!) and comment here by 10 am PST on Tuesday, February 5th, 2013 to tell us which is your favorite saying. That’s it!
Limit one entry per person, so don’t get all crazy. Shipping is free to US and Canadian residents. If you live outside the US/Canada, you’re still welcome to enter the raffle – but you’ll need to pay $5 shipping. (Shipping upgrades and insurance can also be purchased by anyone who’s interested.)
The winner will be chosen by random.org and announced here on my blog on Tuesday, February 5th by midnight CST. Once all the excited squealing is done, the winner should use the Contact Me tab above to send me their contact info so that I can pass it along.
Now…what are you waiting for? Go follow/like Marigold on your choice of these social media sites:
Google Friend Connect (on the sidebar of her blog)
Don’t forget to comment here and tell us which saying is your favorite!
I have a red one that says “oh bloody hell” and it’s totally awesome. You can’t have mine.
Sometimes I forget to be grateful for what I have. There are days when it feels like I’m in constant battle against “the grass is always greener syndrome”. Someone’s always luckier than me, prettier than me, has more money than me. Thinner than me. Hell, that’s most of the world.
I’m ashamed of how often I forget to be grateful. I’m luckier than so many others.
Remember back in the day when Oprah had her “Ah-hah!” moment and finally lost all her weight? I remember sitting in a restaurant with one of my girlfriends talk’in shit about poor Oprah. While we chomped on what was easily a day’s worth of calories, we lamented about how easy it would be lose our weight if we had Oprah’s enormous wealth.
“Yeah, if I could afford to hire someone to follow me around all day I’d hit my goal weight too,” my friend said. “She has a personal chef, a personal trainer, a personal assistant…she doesn’t have to do shit for herself.”
Our solution to the problem? Order dessert…because we poor girls, who had to work for a living and struggled so unfairly to lose weight, deserved it. We weren’t really struggling though. Well, I can only speak for me. I started all my diets on Monday back then, after a “last night on earth” eating binge on Sunday night. By Thursday night I was usually so starved and bored that I was calling for pizza delivery. For years, I did the same thing over and over again, failing every time and then whined to myself about it over a pint of mint chip while I watched The Biggest Loser.
It wasn’t until just over a year ago, when I was on the verge of lap band surgery, that I realized the bulk of my struggle was a bunch of bullshit that I was feeding myself. Well, the diet industry was feeding it to me as well – but I was the one swallowing it. Just weeks before my planned lap band surgery, I decided to experiment with a sort of imaginary lap band…and I found something unexpected: gratitude.
My imaginary lap band experiment opened my eyes. I didn’t miss all the processed crap I had been eating when I went without it. Instead, I missed the healthy foods that I enjoy cooking for myself. It surprised me quite a bit…and was the catalyst that caused me to cancel my surgery and do this on my own.
Here we are again, just over a year later, with my food demons in check…and now I’m going after exercise. Just a few weeks into the process of making exercise a consistent habit, I’m putting an enormous amount of thought into every aspect of it. Why do I hate it? What do I hate about it? How can I change that? What roadblocks are in my way? How do I get rid of them? This may seem like a lot of over thinking to some of you, but this is exactly what I did with health eating last year and it worked like a charm. Examine every rock, every stone, every pebble.
This year it’s not my healthy, delicious recipes I’m grateful for. Well, I’m still grateful for all that. With my focus on exercise this year, my relentless over thinking is making me grateful for the fact that I already have everything I need in order to move more. I hate gyms – but I’m grateful for the treadmill in my bedroom that makes gym memberships unnecessary. I’ve always had foot problems that can create issues for me, even when I was thin…but I have strong legs and no serious handicaps that keep me from exercising consistently.
And then there’s the path…
This is the entrance to a 6.10 mile long bike/walking trail in my neighborhood. I only have to walk two neighborhood streets behind my house to get here. The trail connects to other parks with other walking trails as well, providing just over 20 miles of room for me to stretch my legs. If I turn right, I’ll hit the dog park and a few other parks and trails. The bulk of the trail lies to my left. I have no idea what’s down there…but I plan to find out.
This post is the beginning of a series of blog posts I’ll be making as I discover what waits for me on the path ahead…on this trail and in my head as I try to fight some pretty serious mental demons about exercise. Four weeks into my new challenge of making exercise a consistent habit and I’m still resisting myself at every turn.
That’s fine. If that’s how my subconscious wants to play it, I can’t control it – but I can control what I do about it. So I will use the legs that I’m so grateful for to propel me down the path ahead whether my subconscious likes it or not…just like I made myself stand in the kitchen last year and actually cook instead of hitting the drive-thru. At first it was hard, but I avoided fad diets and absolute thinking. Gentle persistence turned into willingness…which turned into habit…and before I knew it my whole way of thinking about food was changed for good.
As I write this and I think about the fact that I’m going to go down this path whether I want to or not, I’m afraid. I know it isn’t real fear. There’s nothing to be afraid of down this path. (Well, at least not until spring when the bugs come back.) But, as I’ll explain in more detail later, there are mental demons at the heart of this that I haven’t confronted in over 20 years. When I think about the crap I’m going to have to claw through this year in order to change my life, last year seems like a total breeze.
It doesn’t matter in the end. It has to be done…because I want it done. I may not be particularly courageous, but I am stubborn.
And so down the path I go…
As I announced on my Facebook fan page recently, I am going inactive on Fitocracy. Here’s why…
Although a worthwhile and arguably kick-ass idea, Fitocracy appears to be 90% iron pumping triathlon winning fitness ninjas and 10% fitness newbies. I may revisit my decision in the future, but after careful consideration and a few experiences that made me shake my head…I’m done for now. To those of you who followed me there and enthusiastically participated in our group challenges, I wholeheartedly apologize if I have disappointed you. I love you all dearly and I truly appreciate your support as I go through this process of attaining the healthy lifestyle I’m striving for.
Please allow me to offer the following evidence as I state my case…
Exhibit A: Naked people. While impressive, keep your naked ass off my computer – especially if I’m cruising for quests and challenges at work. People do post naked pictures of their expertly, if not overly sculpted physiques. I’m just not into that. At all.
Exhibit B: Fitocrats hitting on Fitocrats. Ya know…I’d go to the gym if I wanted to see that. Save the “Let’s get together for a romantic dinner of Muscle Milk” for someplace where the rest of us don’t have to watch.
Exhibit C: Speaking in tongues. You know that feeling when you take your car to the mechanic and they check it out, then walk up to you with what looks like a grease covered apple wedger and say “Your squinky squank’s got malnagging boogle parts in it and they’ve all gotta be replaced”? You just stand there and blink, wondering what the hell they just said, right? Check out this actual update that showed up on my feed one day:
This has been driving me crazy all day. I read a t-nation post about avoiding Britany Spears syndrome, thick waist from isolating abs and obliques all day every day. He recommends a female, wanting to lose weight, carb cycle with a (c/p/f) 60/30/10, 10/30/60 split with high fat days are lifting days (ish) and the carb day is a rest day (4 day cycle). I have been doing a lean gains recomp for 6 weeks and have had good results. I want to start a cut but now I’m questioning my macros.
I must have read it 5 times, all the while wondering to myself how many Power Bars a person has to eat to get that jacked up. I can’t relate. I don’t want to relate. I don’t want to live in a world where “Britany Spears Syndrome” is a real affliction…so piss off!
Further, very soon after I became a “Fitocracy Hero” (thanks to all of you joining me there and winning me that extra badge) I was sorry to see several seasoned members
posting whining about the fact that so many new people would be joining at the start of the new year…which was made even worse because Dr. Oz had decided to endorse Fitocracy. There was a lot of snobbery and eye-rolling going on at the prospect of having to deal with new members – something I thought was kind of shitty, for lack of a better term.
I don’t begrudge the Fitocrats their place on the internet and I completely applaud them for doing what they love to do, but I have to be around people I can relate to…and I can’t relate to them. I’m sorry if you’re disappointed…and I hope you forgive me. If it helps, I’m mentally wishing each of you to win a million hundred dollars and a lap dance from Hugh Jackman.
I’ll be back by Sunday to tell you all about The Path. I hope that sounds mysteriously awesome…because it’s supposed to.
Hey y’all -
I’ve got about four different blog posts going right now and I can already see the writing on the wall: none of them are coming easy. The writing process is a lot like giving birth for me (or at least what I’ve heard about giving birth). There’s a lot of pushing and sweating and, in the end, a big mess and a lot of crying. Hopefully when I’m done, though, I have a new bundle of joy…er, words…to post for you. I’ve been pushing on this one for days. Either I post it tonight or I’ll be looking for an epidural and a rubber donut to sit on tomorrow.
I got a very sweet email from a reader the other day that really made me smile. She was highly complimentary about my little blog. Honestly, I truly consider it an honor when you write to me to tell me your personal stories. We’re all in this together, right? We’re all fighting the same battles.
This reader was asking me in particular why the “pounds lost” ticker on the right has been at 44 pounds for quite a while without moving…because watching that ticker go down is very motivating for her. Like so of my loyal readers who follow my blog (and I love every single one of you!), she’s inspired by my story and enjoys the motivation she gets from it. It made me realize that I haven’t spoken much about my trips to the scale and my weight loss since I began my goal of moving more in 2013.
This wonderful reader gives me more credit than I deserve, even supposing that I’ve continued to lose weight and am keeping it a secret until I can announce that I’ve lost 100 pounds with much fanfare and merriment. I would never do that to you, I promise. We’re in this together – and my purpose in writing this blog is to lay it all out on the line in honest form. I believe it’s only in honest, raw form that we really succeed. Anyone who tries to hand it to you all neatly packaged and heavily marketed is selling you something. And if they’re selling you something, you can’t trust them. They’re making money off your misery, kids. That’s why you don’t see any ads for weight loss surgery or acai berry gel or the HCG diet here. I’m not going to be part of the problem.
I’m going to give you my progress report but I have mixed feelings about talking about it – not because I have bad news, but because I’ve grown tired of the predictable response I get from anyone I speak to about my progress right now. Let me give you an example of a recent conversation I had with a nice enough person who seems to only be interested in instant solutions. For the sake of abbreviation and anonymity, we’ll call her Clueless.
Clueless: So how’s the weight loss going?
HMP: Fine, thanks!
Clueless: How much weight have you lost so far?
HMP: 44 pounds.
Clueless: Oh, good for you! What was it before? I haven’t talked to you since way before Christmas.
HMP: 45 pounds.
Clueless gets a puzzled look.
HMP: I lost 45 pounds, then I gained 7 back. I’ve lost 6 of those…so the total is 44 pounds.
Clueless: Oh, what’s wrong?
HMP: (with a slightly patronizing smile) Nothing’s wrong.
Clueless: Well, 44 pounds is great. How long did that take you?
HMP: A year.
Clueless frowns with much disappointment.
HMP: (resisting the urge to throw something at Clueless) I feel successful and that’s all that matters. I’ve lost 44 pounds and kept it off all this time. I’ve never done that before. We fatties consider that a big deal.
Clueless instantly realizes she’s disappointed that I lost weight and feels embarrassed. Desperate to change the subject, she says “So who do you like on The Biggest Loser this season?”
HMP: I don’t watch it. That isn’t real life or a responsible way to take care of yourself.
Clueless made some more small talk and walked away…most likely chalking my 44 pounds up to failure. Probably feeling sorry for me in some way because she thinks I haven’t figured it out yet. Well, I haven’t figured it all out yet…but I’m well on my way.
I experienced something very similar last year when it first became noticeable that I was losing weight. People were elated for me. They would come up to me excitedly asking how much I’d lost, how long it took me. Since I’d lost a significant amount of weight in a short amount of time, they were all ears. Next came the question how did you do it?
HMP: Well, I gave up sugar and processed foods first. Then I gave up diet soda and fast food. It’s been amazing.
Clueless: What diet is that?
HMP: It’s not a diet. I eat grilled chicken, raw spinach, grilled turkey burgers. Apples. Greek yogurt. I eat healthy.
Clueless gives a disappointed look. No pills, no shakes. No magic sprinkles to shake on my food. Nope, just hard work and life changes. It’s not so sexy to some people who don’t want to hear the truth.
I’m not comparing any of you guys to Clueless, believe me. Y’all are like me. You’ve been around the block enough and you understand how the game works. You’re tired and ready for a solution that works for you…and when you find someone like me with a big mouth who puts all her big butt frustrations on the internet, you feel like you found your long lost sister. :-) I feel the same way about you every time I get an email or a Facebook message. We understand each other’s trials, tribulations, and frustrations in a way that our slim & trim friends never will.
I wish I could tell you I’ve secretly been losing weight so that I can surprise you with a big number, but that’s not the case. The truth is that the ticker is right. It’s holding at 44 pounds…and it’s not going to budge again until I make exercise a consistent habit. That’s how my body works. Yours may be different – but mine gets to a point where it says “Okay, I’ve lost enough…if you want to look awesome you’re going to have to work with me a lot more.”
I know someone who’s very physically active. He’s an avid mountain biker. Very athletic. He has a serious problem with food temptations. Too much beer. Too many yummies. But the exercise part? He’s got that down pat. I’m exactly the opposite. My food is in check. My exercise needs help.
That’s why I bought a Fitbit. That’s why I tried Fitocracy. 2013 is all about moving. It’s all about getting going and battling all my old exercise demons. By the end of the year, I plan to be an absolute badass.
My goal is no longer about keeping a stranglehold on my food intake and keeping temptation at bay. I’ve got that down. My goals are now about moving more, finding a form of exercise that I enjoy, and pounding out some of the stress in my life with running shoes and treadmills and nature trails. Eventually, I will get back on the scale on a regular basis. I do that because I enjoy it, not because I’m obsessing or feel like I have to. However, to get on the scale in the beginning of all this…when the shortest walk feels like a major, painful effort… is suicide. All it will do is make it seem like the scale isn’t moving fast enough for all the hard work I’m doing…and I’ll quit. I don’t want to pull at that thread.
Some of you have asked me what motivates me. Obviously, it’s not The Biggest Loser if you’ve read my posts about my experience with them. One of the things that inspires me most is People magazine’s “Half Their Size” issue. The before and after photos of the people who’ve lost so much weight are incredibly inspiring to me. I dream of how I’ll feel as I’m posing for my “after” picture. That’s what motivates me. So when I see someone disappointed that I’ve lost 44 pounds in a year…or when I don’t tell them that I put miracle sprinkles on a hamburger and lost a size in a month…it’s ok. It’s really ok. I close my eyes and I think of the day I’m posing for my “after” picture. It will happen.
The instant gratification that society is trying to slap on us isn’t real. Contestants on The Biggest Loser use asparagus binges and deprive themselves of water before weigh-in day in order to hit the big numbers. Shakeology, HCG, and all these scam diets are just people making money off of those of us who struggle with our weight. If any of these things really worked, we would all be slim already and obesity wouldn’t be such a raging problem. But they don’t work. Not for us, anyway. They work for the diet industry…because we’re putting billions of dollars in their pockets every year. Well, not me. I’m done.
So 44 pounds in a year. It’s not sexy and shiny. It’s not all wrapped up in a pretty package. I’m not showing you how quick and easy it is. It’s work. I have many, many more pounds to follow…and I just need to move a little farther down the path. I’ve already started moving more. I’m about to increase my goal again. In fact, you’re about to see me start getting really physically active…and I hope to inspire you to do the same.
I’m proud of my 44 pounds. Incredibly proud. I feel like they’re my badge of honor for fighting the food demons last year. There will be many more badges of honor this year as I battle my exercise demons. I promise to share it with you here. For whatever reason, I’m called to put my personal experience out here for the world to see.
So here I am, world. This is me. This is my life before the “after” picture. This is the work that’s been done and the work that needs to be done. This is the blood, the sweat, and the tears of it. This is what it takes to get to the day when at last you take your “after” picture.