Monday, November 28, 2011

Exercise is a pain in the neck. Literally.

So, my 100 pushups was temporarily put on hold this weekend as I nursed a sore neck. I don't know if it's the pushups or maybe I just slept wrong, but oh man it hurts! (Oh, and a word to the wise...don't take Flexerill before going to church. I didn't realize it was a muscle relaxer. I learned quickly that it is.)

My last shot at the pushups was to do 50. And I S-T-R-U-G-G-L-E-D. I got about halfway through them and had to resort to the wimpy girly kind. So, I'm going to do week three over again until I can do them all. I WILL accomplish this. Even if it takes me a few tries!

Thursday, November 17, 2011

My friend Stephanie told me that if she ever thought I was getting fat, then she'd let me know by offering to split lunch with me when we go out.

This was right after we split lunch at Cocina Superior. Hmmm...

I know she was joking, but it got me thinking. Do any of us really have that solid person in our lives who will actually tell us the truth about ourselves. And even more than we REALLY want to know the truth? (Cue Jack Nicholson.)

Very few outfits get put on this body of mine that I don't immediately go to my husband and ask "Do I look fat in this?" His standard response: "No, you don't look fat. You don't look like an Oompa Loompa. You don't have big legs. You don't have muffin top. Your boobs don't look too big. And you can't see any cellulite." Poor guy. He has to remember the right answers to all of the specific questions that I guess I've asked him at some point. Notice I said "the right answers." Because what in the world would I do if one day he just up and said, "Yep, babe. Hate to tell you this, but you look like a whale in that." ???? Would I curl up and cry like a baby? Would I lash out? ("WELL WHO ASKED YOU?!?") Why do I even ask these questions? I don't want to know the truth for real. All it boils down to is that I see these problem areas with myself, and I just want someone to tell me that they are NOT problem areas at all and that I'm just perfect. Basically...just lie to me so we can walk out the door on time. :)

My workouts are going okay. I'm not finding as much time to get in my full 30 minutes these days. We are heading out of town this weekend for my cousins wedding, and I've been busy in the evenings this week trying to get everything washed, ironed and packed. But I am still keeping up with the 100 pushups, and I just added the 200 squats app to the mix. I LOVE it! And speaking of pushups and squats, here is a new workout plan to try out from my friend Keri!

Using only squats, pushups and a jog in place, complete the following movements:
1. Jog in place for 1 minute, perform 10 squats, 10 pushups and then jog in place for 1 minute.
2. Stretch the legs.
3. Perform 15 squats, 15 squat jumps (leaving the ground), 15 pushups
4. Jog in place for 1 minute, perform 10 squats, 10 pushups and then jog in place for 1 minute.
5. Perform 20 squat pulses, 20 frog hops (leaving the ground), 20 tricep pushups or pressups.
6. Jog in place for 1 minute, perform 10 squats, 10 pushups and then jog in place for 1 minute.
7. Perform 15 squats, 15 squat jumps (leaving the ground), 15 pushups.
8. Jog in place for 1 minute, perform 10 squats, 10 pushups and then jog in place for 1 minute.
9. Perform 20 squat pulses, 20 frog hops, 20 tricep pushups.
10. Stretch.


Monday, November 14, 2011

Happiness is...

...waking up to God's new mercies each day.

...holding your baby at 1am because he is coughing too much to sleep. Sitting up on the couch while he lays on your chest and sleeps so good that he starts to snore a little.

...watching your daughter blow you a kiss when you take her to school and cherishing the moment because it (like all of them) is fleeting.

...raking leaves on a beautiful Sunday with your husband and not really saying much but just working together on something.

...the smell of something yummy cooking in the kitchen. out closets and generally ridding your life of clutter.

...finding a new outfit that makes you feel skinny.

...celebrating with someone when they get married and watching them glow with excitement over the anticipation of "their day."

...being asked to be your best friend's baby's godmother.

...getting covered up with stuffed animals and having your children run and jump on you. (a bit painful at times, but their laughter makes it all worth it.)

...saying prayers with your kids.

...seeing the number of pushups go up on your phone app and actually being able to meet the challenge!

...sitting with your girlfriends late at night and laughing over something that you've probably already laughed at 1000 times before, but it still seems funny.

...snuggling under a blanket when it starts to get chilly outside.

...a great pair of pajama pants.

...hearing good news...ANY good news...if you see how happy the person is that it's happening to.

I didn't want you guys to think that I was entirely cynical. :)

Thursday, November 10, 2011

I'm convinced that Anna's brain wakes up five minutes before her body does each morning.

Have you ever seen this lady on the packaging for baby monitors?

At first glance, this seems like a perfectly lovely mom, sitting with her computer...probably facebooking...and enjoying some alone time while her baby naps. You know what's wrong with it? (I mean besides the fact that Mom looks like she's already had a shower, is completely dressed and is sitting in a clean room.) That monitor is lit up all the way! That baby is screaming it's head off, and there sits Mom...smiling the creepiest kind of smile, when she should be a crumpled mess, collapsed in front of the couch, elbows on knees, hands grabbing hair and screaming, "Why won't that child stop crying?!?" I like to think the fact that I'm still crazy enough to completely lose it at any given moment means that I haven't drifted off into that scary, catatonic mom world that we all are one child tantrum away from. You know the one I'm talking about. I'm talking about the one that allows you to smile and have a conversation with another person while your child goes crazy in a public place, screaming like a nut, jumping on furniture and yanking you by the arm (MOMMY! MOMMY! MOMMY!!) But you've gone to the other place. The place that allows you to completely block those sounds and never miss a beat in your conversation. I am not that mom.

So much of being a parent is mental toughness. Don't get me wrong...chasing a toddler around all day is physically demanding, but the mental game can be the one that gets me the most. When things don't go the way they should, I tend to lose it. But I think that's okay. It means that I know in my heart that things should be a little rosier than they are at that very moment. I can see the difference in my current reality and a place with more peace. And the difference in the two makes me snap. I'm okay with my tantrums. Really.

Lately, Anna has been asking the weirdest questions first thing in the morning. "How long is an hour?" Well, it's as long as your dance class. Do you think that's a long time? "No." Well, that's how long an hour is. "Then how long is 'a while'?" I DON'T KNOW! DON'T ASK ME THE HARD QUESTIONS BEFORE I'VE HAD MY CAFFEINE! But it's like that all the time now. And she's old enough to sort of reason through things too. It's not like when she was 3 and would ask me what words meant: "What's a republican?" (Yes, she asked me that. How do you explain that to a three-year-old?) She's always known big words, even as a very young toddler, and trying to dumb down the answers to a kid who tells you that "voting is our civic duty" was really tough. But now...Oh now. The constant "but why"s that follow everything, and the need to logically figure it all out. And the worst is when she outsmarts me!

Anna: "Mommy, how many bones are in my hand?"
Me: "Alot. Lots of bones make up the inside of your hand."
Anna: "What if I didn't have any bones in my hand?"
Me: "Then your hand would be this soft mushy mess that you couldn't use."
Anna: "Do fiction characters have bones in their hands?"
(She's obsessed with fiction vs. nonfiction books right now.)
Me: "Sure."
(She thinks for a second.)
Anna: "No, they don't. Because they aren't real people."

Geez! Is she right? I guess they don't. Score one for the 5-year-old. Oh yeah...and this conversation took place at 6:45am. Gone are the days when I could give her an answer, and she would just believe me because hey...I'm mommy. I know everything, right? Now, she needs logical answers in order to accept the world around her, and brain is finding it hard to go between her world and Alex's in a split second. With Alex, it's just about words...any words. He points to an object, and I tell him. Couch. Light. Book. Ball. Cow. Triangle. I could tell him that a chair is a boat, and he would just accept it. Love that trusting kid. And I can't help but wonder if he will be as inquisitive as Anna. You know they say all children are different, so will he need to be as logical as her? I don't know. It will be interesting to see. Just as long as I don't end up smiling that creepy blank smile at either one of them when they ask me those tough questions. That's when we know there's real trouble.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

" you want to do your exercises?" No, kid! Leave me alone!

So, Anna is now my personal trainer. The kid LOVES to workout with me. She thinks the jumping jacks are fun. The lunges are fun. The pushups are fun. Clearly, she's insane. But I'm glad to have a workout buddy and a little bit of encouragement. I think it's good that she sees me working out too. I mean...maybe she'll take something away from all of this, and I'll inspire her to lead a healthier life than I've lead. I think so much of how we live our adult lives is how we saw our parents live theirs. So, I've found yet another reason to start being a little healthier. And she has no idea that I totally blame her and Alex for what's happened to my body. Don't get me wrong, their sweet smiles can brighten any day, but then I look at how my belly button is nowhere close to where God originally placed it...and I get a little peeved. So, now she's trying to whip me back into shape. How's that for irony?! Of course I jest. (Sort of...)

Keri's workout was a killer! I'm already looking forward to (dreading) doing it again. And this just in...doing a plank with your kids around turns into a fun game for them. They treat you like some sort of suspension bridge and crawl back and forth underneath you. And you are stuck there trying not to collapse on top of them, crushing them with all of your weight. So, yet another way kids change your life. They force you into planks WAY longer than you could have ever held without them. That's a plus!

The water thing seems to be doing it's job too. Of course, I go to the bathroom like a pregnant lady (about once every 15 seconds), but I did notice that my "skinny" jeans fit a little better this morning than they ever have before. And I like to think perhaps it's because I've been drinking so much water lately. If water helps shave off a little of the old muffin top, then pass me another glass...and get out of my way when I'm headed to the potty!

100 pushups update: that is going well, but I have to say, each time I complete a day and it tells me how many I'm going to do the next day, I get a little scared!! Needless to say...the rest breaks they give you in between groups of pushups are super nice. I find it hard to believe that I'll ever be able to do 100 pushups in a row without stopping, but I'm actually enjoying the challenge of building up to it!

So, that's it for now. Sorry for not posting in a few days. As I suspected...this blogging thing is tough! It's hard to find the time to sit down and collect my thoughts and put them in some sort of order. Clearly by this post, I still haven't mastered that second part at all.

Happy planking, everyone!

Friday, November 4, 2011

A body in motion stays in motion. A body at rest can potentially gain 3 pounds in 3 months...

...or something like that.

Thursdays are really long days for me. Anna has dance class on those nights, and last night we didn't get home until about 7:30. I came in, inhaled my dinner and then helped get the kids ready for bed. Afterwards, I was too darn tired to do anything. So...failure #1: I didn't work out yesterday. Hey, I said I would be honest! So, I'm going to have to make that up this weekend, and it seems that my friend, Keri, has just the solution. Keri is a personal trainer at Hoover Fitness (check her out if you are looking for an awesome trainer), and she sent me a workout last night that I think may very well kill me. I'll share her devilish plan with you:

20 jumping jacks

10 push ups

Walking lunges

Repeat 3 times

Jump rope 1 minute

10 power jacks (slow squat jumps)

3 sets of stairs

Wall sit for 30 seconds

10 squat w/ alternating forward kicks when coming up out if the squat

Repeat all this 3 times

Upright row for 15

Overhead triceps-15

Repeat 3 times

Shoulder press-15

Bicep curl-15

Repeat 3 times

Front raises-15

Lateral raises-15

Repeat 3 times

20/20/20 plank center, right, left (each 20 seconds change positions) for 2 minutes total

25 alternating oblique crunches (normal crunch reaching elbow to opposite knee then switching sides)

30 sec. V-sit rope climb (lean back, scoop belly, feet up and reaching up like climbing rope)

15 double crunch

20/20/20 plank again

My favorite part of the email was when she said "Good luck and have fun. This might take longer than 30 minutes." Oh, Keri, Keri, Keri...

But I'm gonna do it. This will be my Saturday workout. Someone may have to fashion some sort of rope and pulley system to lift my arms and body so I can cheer during the Bama game. Roll Tide!

Thursday, November 3, 2011

My friend David once asked me, "What color is the sky in your world?"

Unless you've ever lived with me, gone on a long road trip with me or seen me sing karaoke or Proud Mary at a friend's wedding or work function (so sorry to all of you whose special days I may have ruined), then you might not REALLY know me. But for those of you who have, then you are laughing at David's question because you know why he asked me that. It's because I'm weird, y'all. I do all sorts of weird voices, dances, impressions. At any given moment, I might break out into song. My close college friends have heard me make up some crazy ones, and those who used to go on youth choir tours with me are probably still haunted by my many self-created characters. (And let's not even talk about the permanent damage I'm probably doing to my own children.) I like to have fun. I like to laugh, and I like to make other people laugh. I am immature. I am goofy. I can be a bit polarizing to some. I can be alot to digest. But I will be real with you.

A few weeks ago, I discovered green tea in our kitchen at work. Now, I've read about the benefits of drinking green tea:

helps fight cancer and heart disease
helps lower cholesterol
burns fat (YEA!)
prevents diabetes and stroke
staves off dementia
great antioxidant (so are red wine and dark chocolate...MUCH more fun.)

I figured that I would give it a shot. I've tried it in the past and really hated it, but this was actually the beginning of my "health" experiment. So, I forced myself to drink it. It wasn't all that bad. This particular brand had a great smell and flavor, and hey...with enough sugar, you can make anything taste better. :) The next day, I went back for another cup and forced myself to drink it again. The same with the next day and the next until, low and behold, I actually started to like the stuff. I actually looked forward to my warm cup of antioxidant goodness each afternoon.

Then I moved on to a NEW experiment. What if I replaced my morning diet coke with green tea? GASP! I usually have a small cup of diet coke at home when I'm getting ready in the mornings and then have another can of it when I get to work. THAT would be the one I would replace. I mean...lets' not get crazy, people. I can't give up caffeine altogether. So, I did. Once again, after a few days, I actually looked forward to getting to work to make my hot cup of tea! (And I was even able to lessen the sugar.)

This is my these early days, I'm trying to force myself to do little healthy things to see if after a few weeks, they become habits. And if weight loss or dropping a dress size is a by-product of all of that, then that would be great! But it's not the goal. I once heard someone say that a slightly overweight person who works out and eats well can be healthier than a thin person who is blessed with a high metabolism who never exercises and eats horribly. (And yes...the rest of us hate you, Naturally Skinny Person.) So, there you have it. After three blog posts, I think I finally figured it all out. WHEW! Wow...I'm like that chick who you just can't break up with because she needs to keep talking about it and wanting to know "WHY??" I'll shut up now.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

My sister once told me that it all goes downhill after 35, so for the next four months I'm going to get geared up for my downward spiral.

I've been toying with the idea of starting a blog for a little while now, and when I mentioned it on Facebook, I got an overwhelming response of posts, emails and people at my office telling me to go for it. So, I'm taking your advice to start one and will of course blame you all if this crashes and burns. I'm not really sure where this blog will go, but one of my main focuses will be trying to make some healthy life changes before my 35th birthday (four months from today). And I figured...if I blog about it, then maybe I'll be held accountable for it.
Please keep in mind...I am not a health guru nor do I ever intend to be one. I am not a registered dietician or a personal trainer. I don't really even know what is truly healthy. (Did they ever make a decision on eggs?) So, please don't follow my lead at all. In fact...just stop reading now. SEE! I knew I would fail!

I am merely a person who wants to make little changes and sort of document my progress, and we'll see what happens after 4 months of it. I'm sort of like a blogging science experiment. Perhaps I'll grow mold. Who knows? But I am NOT setting a weight-loss goal. I believe in my clothes...not scales. And I am NOT going on a diet. Everyone is on a's either a good one or a bad one. And I'm NOT joining a gym. I have two kids, a husband, a full-time job and very little disposable income. I have an elliptical machine at home, an exercise ball, hand weights, resistance bands, a yoga mat and a few videos. And seriously...I sorta feel thinner just knowing that it's all here. Knowing is half the battle, right? (I really hate exercising. You will learn this about me soon enough.)

Anyway...That's it. Let's see how this goes. OH! And you will also probably see posts about my kids because they are too cute and funny not to talk about.