Before Pictures

Taking before pictures has never bothered me. I mean, it is what it is, right?

You put on a brave face, find some decent lighting, and set the timer on your phone or take a mirror selfie. You have full control over who sees it and WHEN they see it. You also get to take as many pics as you need to before selecting the perfect “before”.

However, when you step into a room of strangers, a professional photographer, and nothing but a tiny bikini on under your sweat clothes. . .yeah, I sweated more in that 10min than I ever have during a workout!

For the challenge, it said that the judging is mainly based on pictures. So being the nerd that I am, I looked at the winners from past challenges. All of their before pictures were in two piece swimwear or active-wear.

I assumed that the other participants would be stripping down to their skivvies too. . .but NOOOOOOO. . .just me, my chubs and my tiny bikini lol

I consider myself a pretty confident person, but let me tell you, I wanted to throw up and get some cardio by running away! But I didn’t. I just said, well, I’m wearing a bikini so y’all get ready for all my glory!

I can only hope that my winter body and skin tone look nice against the black bikini and white background. Maybe the headline on the USA Today paper was engaging enough to draw everyone’s attention to the headline instead of my waistline.

Or. . .maybe everyone there was just like me. Too busy judging their own bodies to give a hoot about the glaringly white, chubby chick, sweating in the bikini.

Take a moment and think about the last time you were anxious about what others thought. Are you giving “them” and their thoughts of you more power than you give yourself? Do you let what MIGHT be going through a strangers mind stop you from experiencing something great?

I didn’t like the feeling of standing there, a foot away from a professional lens with all my razor bumps and super chubs, but I can guarantee I’m gonna like posing down in 12 weeks looking like a winner! (and hopefully with a tan!)201511_1122_aaaba_sm

 

 

Rice Cake with Peanut Budder

So things are going really well! I’ve been learning how to be flexible with my meal plan without going CRAZY. It’s been nice to “splurge” a little here and there 🙂 With the My Fitness Pal app, I can easily see why it’s worth it to just get a kids portion of a meal out, vs either not eating/going HAM on a bad decision!

Speaking of flexibility, I just spent the weekend with my sister. Did I load up my little Gladware containers and head up the mountain?? Nope!

I made up my mind that I was going to enjoy my weekend. .  within reason.

But guess what happened, my sister lovingly prepared meals and snacks for me because she had been reading my blog ❤

Even my 3yr old niece was on board with my changes and asked “Do you want some rice cake, with peanut budder?”

This. This is why it’s important to let folks know what’s going on in your life (disclaimer: don’t be that person that just non-stop salivates and obsesses over what they CAN’T have. . .😒)

I’ve also noticed that several coworkers have started cleaning up their diets and such! They’ll kinda check in with me and tell me what’s up.

PS, I have a FitBit now, so feel free to add me 💪💪💪

Break the Cycle

Sometimes you don’t realize that you are a part of a cycle. Sometimes you do, but you don’t know how to break it.

You worry that you will end up just like the people that hurt you. Wondering if you should even take certain opportunities for fear of royally screwing things up.

Guess what- the fact that you’re worried about it is a step in the right direction! You’ve ACKNOWLEDGED that you were hurt. You realize that you have been mistreated. Not wanting to cause misery for someone else is a good thing. However, if your fear is getting in the way of living your BEST life, then it’s time to break the cycle IN YOUR HEAD!

For me, it’s my physical appearance (see my Showgirl blog). It’s like no matter WHAT I look like, I get negative feedback. And for me, I’d rather those people in my life not feel threatened by me when I look good. . .that is until my breakthrough a few nights ago. I was telling my success partner that I know I can get in shape with abs and all the rest- I’ve DONE it before. But every time I’ve looked good, I get accused of forgetting where I’ve come from, being showy, and self-absorbed. Are those things true?? Pft- who knows. . .but I do know one thing, if those things are true, they’ve ALWAYS been there, not just because I look good. The same goes for when I’ve put on weight. The whole “are you pregnant”, you sure have gotten “healthy” and here comes chubby.

Because I’ve always been proud of who I am and consider myself to be a very caring and approachable person, I quickly realized that I would rather be a little chubby & deal with stupid remarks, than to look good and make people feel inferior.

Not any more. I will NOT let the voices of a few, trump the SUPPORT of the many. I want and DESERVE to look and feel my best. Self-sabotage is no longer an option. It is not productive, nor is it fair to the majority of people that look to me for inspiration. Haters will always hate. And if someone feels inferior because of me, then maybe they should take some time to get to KNOW me. . .because I’m the farthest thing from superior. . .just ask my friends ♥

Are you holding back in your life because of physical, verbal, emotional abuse? Are you ready to BREAK THE CYCLE??*kisses*

 

Holiday Haters

Here’s the deal folks. I’ve always loved holidays- whether they celebrated ME or not! Holidays aren’t meant to be selfish. . . they are a time of giving and recognizing someone else 🙂

Take Valentine’s day, for example. It is NOT about single’s awareness- it is about LOVE. Love comes in all forms. . .Look around for goodness sake!

Loving your pets: and more importantly recognizing that they love you back. . . UNCONDITIONALLY!
When was the last time a human gave you a hug and wanted to snuggle after you left them in the house for 12hrs with nothing but a puppy pad and your favorite shoes to chew on?

How about a roommate that would listen to your drunken whines and complaints about life, even though you haven’t emptied the litter box in DAYS. And don’t even get me started on what you look like in the morning! Trust me- we are all tough to look at. . .yet pets don’t seem to mind. You have a Valentine- do something special for THEM!

PhotoGrid_1392494375419
My Mom’s Widow Brunch this year!

Widows: yeah I’m going there. Because while you are freakin’ hating life and throwing a full blown pity party- complete with Facebook invites and a Pinterest board- someone else is remembering a loved one they HAD.

My mom has held a Valentine’s Day Brunch (see picture) for the local widows for as long as I remember. My sister and I (and

eventually the master swooner that is my brother!) would be the servers. We got to experience an amazing connectedness and selflessness with a group of people that actually have a reason to HATE Valentine’s Day- send someone that has lost a loved one a Valentine.

Yourself: this is what it really boils down to! Are you ready? It’s very simple: love yourself and you won’t expect it OR need it from someone else.

People that are at peace with who they are, accept their flaws, celebrate their strengths- don’t need the fanfare of any holiday! They can enjoy the happiness that others receive. Because they love themselves, they are COMFORTABLE loving others. When was the last time you reflected on yourself and thought, “You know what? I’m alright. . .I’ve gone through some crappy times, but I’m a darn good person and I love who I’m shaping up to be. I can be satisfied with myself and not steal joy from others because I know I’m complete-“

You don’t NEED anyone- people are just the icing on the cake ❤

In a nutshell!

I have clinical depression- I’m not ashamed of it, nor do I feel like it’s something that needs to come up in everyday conversation.

If you were hoping for a tear-jerker story about a “life-long struggle” you won’t find that here. I feel that only feeds the stigma.

IMG_20121116_165520

Truth is, natural remedies (yoga, religion, herbs, counseling etc. . .) can eliminate A LOT of mind-body issues. I’m so thankful that I tried to “cure” myself with these resources for many years because they have truly enhanced my life!

However, what those things cannot do is sort out a serious glitch in the system. Only modern science can. Good news? I know without a doubt I have clinical depression and that I’m not just popping a pill because a doctor told me to.

It’s taken a while to come out publicly with this for one reason: I refuse to be seen as a victim! Outside of this post, you won’t find me talking about it publicly.

My life is VICTORIOUS!! I’m sure that sharing details about my struggles would increase views and be a great read. . .but, nah- I don’t roll like that.

When people talk with me on a personal, private level and something that I’ve gone through/how I’ve dealt with it will be helpful- absolutely, I’ll share. Other than that, no need!

Blood Donation: What’s in it for you?

I see the looks as people pass by the bus or avoid eye contact when I ask “Could you make time to donate blood today?” I have wondered, how can I get people to understand the importance of blood donation. You may ask yourself, “What’s in it for me?” Well, nothing, really. Sometimes you might get a t-shirt, some decent snacks, and if you’re lucky, a movie ticket. But let’s be honest- those things aren’t THAT great. So why do people donate?

People donate blood because they understand that all it takes is a phone call, a knock on the door, or simply turning on the local news to completely change our lives and we are called to action. When that happens, people respond one of two ways: I wish I were eligible, or I wish I had donated when I was asked. Blood donation is about giving something extra that you have – anonymously – to a stranger in need. It’s knowing that when a community is called to action, you’ve already done your part on a regular basis to make sure that whatever the community needs- it’s there when they need it!

Next time you pass a center or walk by a bloodmobile ask yourself: have you done what you can for your community?

So what’s your story? Why do you donate? What’s in it for you. . .

Bloodmobile