Category Archives: Project Old Pants

You spin me right round, baby.

I haven’t posted about this topic in a while, so I’ll give some quick background:

About, well, I guess it’s been almost a year now, I decided it was time for a change. I had never been really overweight (at my max, I was right at the tippy top of my target weight zone) but I was definitely, positively, for sure not what you would consider to be the pinnacle of health and fitness. I’d been able to eat what I wanted while maintaining a fairly normal weight – and it turns out that what I wanted to eat was a lot of french fries. Then, I started working at a desk all day and… things caught up with me.

I was unhappy, and unhealthy. But I’m proud to say that I’ve changed things. I started eating MUCH better – and as Stefaniedescribed, it was kind of an A-HA moment. Except that I think I had learned that eating healthy foods like fruit and vegetables were good for me by watching Big Bird sing about it. So it’s shouldn’t have been so surprising – but it was! So really, all this bullshit that people talk about like ‘lifestyle changes’ and ‘being good to yourself’ and ‘health being a habit’? Here’s a newsflash: It’s not really bullshit after all. Who knew?

So I’ve been chugging along down this path for a while now. By the end of last year, I had lost about 20 pounds. I fit into my old clothes – a lot of them are too big. Ideally, I’d like to be a little bit thinner, but if it’s not in the cards I guess that’d be OK, too.

The hardest part about this – dare I use the word – journey (oh, god, I hate that word and I can’t type it without laughing) has been exercise. I have never liked it. It has always been something I have suffered through. I had been working out mostly at home, because of an overwhelming (and kind of silly) fear of joining a gym and 1) being constantly embarrassed by how out of shape I was, 2) not knowing the etiquette and/or how to use the equipment, and 3) not being able to keep up with it and wasting my money and feeling the double-whammy of guilt and wasted funds.

Working out at home is kind of boring though. At least it got to be that way for me. I could get new DVD’s and look up routines to try, but there’s a limit to what I can do at home without investing in a ton of equipment that I don’t have room for. Also, I never pushed myself to work out very hard or very long. If 20 minutes into the DVD, dinner was ready and I was bored, the DVD was off. If I didn’t like an exercise or didn’t feel like doing it, skipping it was a piece of cake. But I was still hesitant to join a gym – until…

A girl at work got a 90 day free membership to a local (very expensive) gym. 90 days for free is pretty much un-heard of at any gym, especially this uber-snobby one. No one else wanted it, so she gave it to me. And I signed up for it. And I’ve been using it.

And you know what? The gym doesn’t suck. I actually really like it. Even more shocking – I really like the classes. I’ve been going to strength training on Monday nights, Spinning on Wednesday, sometimes Boot Camp on Thursdays, and spinning again on either Saturday or Sunday morning. It doesn’t feel like work, or torture, or anything like that. In shocking news (at least it shocked me), I actually LOVE spinning. I love that it is hard work, but it’s hard work that I don’t have to really think about – by that I mean that there’s no coreography or anything too complicated. It feels like a REAL work-out, but not like I am going to die halfway through the class. I think I may have finally found something I can stick with.

There’s no real point to this update. I eat fruit now! And vegetables! I go to a gym! Spinning is fun! That’s about it. I guess I didn’t need all of these words to say those things. But it’s kind of cool, actually, knowing that you can actually change your ways. Knowing that a few years spent on the couch doesn’t have to mean a lifetime spent on the couch.

Of course, I wrote this on a day that I had a giant plate of Mexican food for lunch. (News flash: liking fruits and vegetables doesn’t make cheese and fried things any less delicious!)

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Back

So…. I guess I kind of disappeared for a while there, huh. And during the month when I should have been posting every day! The horror!

I don’t have an entirely excellent reason why I was gone, but assuming that you care, it had something to do with work, and a kind of hugely important thing that got screwed up, and needing to fix it. Luckily, with the application of (a lot of my) time and (a lot of the company’s) money all is well and fixed and fine.

There’s also been some family stuff happening which has been, ahem, rather unpleasant, and so I wasn’t really feeling up to 1) being humorous (Wait – I’m humorous, right? I mean, I don’t want to assume and then have you think that I think I’m funny, when really I’m not funny at all. In my real life, I don’t consider myself to be all that funny, but I think some of the stuff on here is pretty funny. I mean, spaghetti! On a wall! It’s a riot!) and 2) delving into some of my life’s less flattering moments.

So there you have it.

But! But, I did have a lovely Thanksgiving, complete with lots of pie. And my Black Friday shopping endeavors were fairly successful. Don’t worry, I’m not one of those crazies who’s out at the mall at 5am. I rolled out of bed at 6:30, and with a few clicks of the mouse, I had my items and the stores had my dollars, and I was back in bed by 7:15. Success!

Among the items purchased was a GPS, and while I’m sorry to say that this purchase will likely result in a decrease of the number of embarrassing stories I have to tell in the future, I am convinced that it will also be a life-changing purchase. Because, you see, I have no sense of direction, and getting lost really stresses me out. Matt kind of has a sense of direction, but getting lost makes him curse a lot. And I don’t know about the areas that you live in, but around here Mapquest (or Google Maps, or whatever) sucks. Boston (and its surrounding suburbs) is a city made almost entirely of 18th century cow paths that someone decided to pave into roads, and with construction and the Big Dig, this all basically translates to: YOU AIN’T GOIN’ NOWHERE. At least without getting lost. Enter my new beloved GPS, which Santa brought for Matt and I as an early Christmas present.

In other news, do you want to know what else I did this weekend? I organized my closet, and went through all of my clothes, and I tried on all of my old clothes, and you know what? THEY FIT.

I’ve been waiting to talk about this, and while I realize that the week following the Great Pie Consumption of 2007 might not be the best time to do it, I want to talk about weight loss, and the fact that I, personally, have lost it. Weight, that is. The thing is, I know we’re all supposed to be happy with ourselves, and focused on being healthy and not the number on the tag, and media images and unhealthy habits and blah de blah blah blah, but the fact is, I was unhappy. Really, really unhappy. And for once in my life, I up and did something about it.

Sure I whined about it for a while first, as some readers might remember, but then at the end of August I started anew. I had lost about 10 pounds by the time I went to NJ to visit with Liz in mid-October, and as of right now I am only a tiny bit shy (it’s that damn pie) of being 20 pounds lighter than I was at the end of August. Sure, there are things that I still want to work on (Hello, triceps! And you stupid, stupid thighs!) but for the most part I am really happy, and I swear when I put on those old jeans (and I could both zip them AND breathe at the same time) there was the sound of angels singing. Because while I know, I KNOW, that it’s not about the number on the tag, and stores are making their clothes bigger to make women feel better about that stupid number, I don’t care, because SIZE SIX, BITCHES.

Ahem.

Anyway, as good as those jeans made me feel, I honestly do feel even better about being happy with myself, and accomplishing something, even something as trivial as reduction of the size of my ass. (I should get a medal. Or maybe a plaque.)

So now that I’m feeling all warm and fuzzy and small-assed (or you know, smallER-assed), let me go ahead and promise more stories of humiliation. I guess since I missed all those days of NaBloPoMo, I will just post the very best of the remaining stories for the next few days, finishing with the Queen Mother on Friday, or maybe sometime next week, depending on how many stories I have left. (You still want to hear the Queen Mother, don’t you?) Since I kind of kicked the whole theory of NaBloPoMo out the window, I guess it doesn’t matter if I actually tell the final tale on the last day of the month.

Also, wanna know something amazing? Or, rather, someONE? The fabulous Sherry has agreed to do a guest post with her very own embarrassing moment. Sherry is fabulous for many reasons: she likes board games, reading, and ice cream, which I personally think are some very good things to like. Also, her guest post is pretty darn good, so I look forward to sharing it with you.  I will be posting Sherry’s guest post on Thursday, so be sure to check back and see that I am not the only one who manages to do silly things sometimes!

That’s all for today, duckies. It’s good to be back!

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Filed under Family, Holidays, Life in New England, NaBloPoMo 2007, Project Old Pants, Retail Therapy

I can’t feel my legs… I HAVE NO LEGS!*

Last night I managed to complete, for the very first time, FOUR of my 10 minute kickboxing segments in a row. I did Basic Training, Arms and Shoulders Sculptor, Washboard Abs, and then, finally, I was able to actually complete the Legs segment. For some reason, I can never complete this one. It is really hard for me, and as proud as I am that I was able to complete it, today I can barely walk. Damn squats and plies.

Anyway, the pain in my legs is nothing compared the the vicious migraine that has wrapped its evil little fingers around the depths of my brain today. Hate. Bring on the drugs! Lots of them! Also, can someone please shut the lights off and STOP MAKING SO MUCH DAMN NOISE? Thanks.

(Random aside: To the person who found my blog by searching “how did pirates get scurvy”, it’s because they were on ships for a long time and didn’t get any fresh fruits or vegetables. Therefore, they got a Vitamin C deficiency, which is what scurvy is. But, you shouldn’t take my word for it, because I’m pretty sure your teacher isn’t going to accept my blog as a reference on whatever report it is that you’re writing. You should go to the Pirate Museum in Salem, Mass. Not that I am a big enough dork to have gone there. Um, more than once. No, sir.)

*Bonus points to anyone who knows what movie that’s from. I don’t even really like the movie but I love that line.

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Filed under Migraines Suck, Project Old Pants, Uncategorized

Project Old Pants Update

Are you sick of hearing about this yet? I try not to write about it too frequently but I really had to tell you about my latest discovery: 10 minute solution – kickbox bootcamp.

I was doing a program of pilates and running… except that the running was really not working for me. I wasn’t getting any better and I hated it so much that I knew it was not something I could stick with long term. So, I e-mailed Liz, who an exercise goddess, and asked for her recommendations. She thought kickboxing might be a good idea, and so I bought the 10 minute DVD and this one .

I started with the For Dummies one, because I thought it would be easier. It did have a helpful section that walked me through the different terms and steps – very helpful for someone like me who does not learn just by watching and copying. But I thought the overall workout was kind of… boring. Also, the For Dummies series apparently has all of these little ‘tips’ that pop up in the middle of the workout. Thanks, people – I know that it’s a good idea to drink water while working out. Oh – and it also had the longest warm-up in history. The first time I did the DVD and figured out that I was 10 minutes in and had just finished the warm-up, I was pretty pissed. Mostly because the warm-up had kicked my butt, but you know. Anyway – overall I was not impressed.

But! Then I tried the 10 minute solution DVD. Love! Love love love! It’s interesting, and not too hard, and I get a good workout. I actually look forward to doing this when I get home – and I have NEVER looked forward to exercise before. I can tell that I am building muscle, and while the number on the scale is about the same, I am starting to see a difference in how my clothes fit. I have more energy, and I sleep better, and overall I am just pleased as punch at how this is going.

Now I’m trying to step it up by really concentrating on eating better. It’s going surprisingly well. In the past, I’ve made excuses for eating – “I can eat those chips because I worked out today.” But now, I don’t even want the chips. I don’t want to ruin my hard work and I know that there are better things to eat.

I’m trying hard to remind myself that I am working on an overall lifestyle change. That my main goal is not just to fit into my old jeans, but to be healthy and to do something that I can keep up for the rest of my life. But, really, that’s a lie. I DO very much want to make a lifestyle change, but I also want to fit into my old clothes and weigh less. I guess I just need to keep reminding myself that these two will go hand in hand.

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Who needs witty titles when you’ve got flowers, trashy magazines, and pants that are too big?

This weekend was pretty gosh darn skippy. On Friday, I managed to get out of work at a decent hour, which would have been great by itself, but I also managed to finish a few major projects on Friday (including getting something out that would have cost us at least 40K had we missed our deadline). I’m that good.

On Saturday, I went to see my co-worker. She just had surgery to repair a torn ACL and so I brought her some trashy magazines and movies and we had fun hanging out while she was semi-drugged. I know that people have this type of surgery all the time, but even a “routine” surgery can be a big deal, I think. She’s stuck in this machine that moves her knee up and down, up and down all day (to keep her range of motion) and she is truly just stuck on the couch. The one time that she got up while I was there was such an ordeal that I was really glad that she had some trashy Cosmo and US Weekly to take her mind off this crap. I know she’ll get better soon and I can’t wait to have her back at work.

Matt and I were planing to go out for Cinco de Mayo on Saturday night, but once we both got home (he played golf with his Dad and brother on Saturday) we were so beat that we decided to just hang out with some TV and some wine. I think it was a good choice as neither of us was feeling like dealing with a crowded bar or crazy night. So we showed the TiVo some love and caught up on Gray’s Anatomy (so good, except for the stupid elevator voice) Heroes(Yikes! Sylar! Not dead! Future Hiro! Love this show!) and a lot of wine. Yum.

On Sunday, not only did Matt go grocery shopping (I gave him a list, of course) but he also did a list of stuff around the house, including… cleaning the bathroom. Also, he bought me flowers! Good boyfriend! All of this made me really happy because he is really making an effort not to leave house stuff to me. Whoever said that there’s nothing sexier than a man with a mop/broom/cleaning instrument of any kind was sooooo right.

And finally… my pants are too big! I can still wear them, but a belt is now a necessity on certain pairs rather than an accessory. I’ve been working really hard on exercising, and it looks like it is paying off a bit. There is actual muscle in my abs! (Under a layer of fat, of course, but still! Muscle!!) This may sound weird, but I swear it’s true: the number on the scale refused to budge, and now all of the sudden it is down about 4lbs. Is this normal? I guess maybe my body was just clinging to it, like a security blanket, and finally decided to let go. Anyway, I owe a big hug to my buddy Denise Austin, and a maybe kind of sort of half-nod to Cool Running (still hate, but uh, maybe a little less than before).

So. That’s what’s happening with me. How are you?

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Filed under Friends, My Sweet Babboo, Project Old Pants, Uncategorized

I think the best ab workout came from laughing at this.

So last night (and tonight! Am Champ!) I did both my regular pilates and the bonus “hips, thighs, and buttocks” workout. Halfway through the workout as we’re doing some kind of leg lift balance thingie, my new BFF Denise Austin says:

Make sure you’re really squeezing your buttocks as you do this. Because remember, if you don’t squeeze ’em, no one else will want to.

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Project Old Pants Update

Despite my lack of posting on this subject lately, I’m still working on it. I can’t say that I’ve experienced mind-blowing results, but I am proud of my progress and that is enough for now.

Diet-wise, I haven’t really changed much. I’m still trying to just make better choices and think about stuff before I chow it down. I’ve made some real progress in the area of portion-control, though. As I’ve mentioned, I tend to have some problems in that area. The biggest change that I’ve made is to constantly remind myself that if I’m still hungry, or if I get hungry later, I can go get more. There are days when I eat and find that I am still hungry half an hour later – but those are rare. More frequently, I find that while I would have eaten more if it had been on my plate, I am really quite full after a small amount and simply don’t need more.

The biggest progress I’ve made has been in the area of exercise. While I still contend that exercise sucks and I would really rather not do it… I guess I have to. I’ve started doing this running plan, as suggested by Janssen. Let me tell you my thoughts on running: It sucks hairy goat testicles. That is what I think in my head as I run. Because it really sucks. But it IS getting easier, and while it does suck, I also think it is a good plan for me because we have a treadmill, or I can run outside – basically it requires little in the way of equipment, coordination, or much else except for, uh, endurance and lung capacity. Which I seem to have little of but that will come in time, right?

I’ve also been doing a Pilates DVD, which I’ve roped Matt into doing with me, because if I’m going to look like a moron all contorted with my ass in the air in the middle of the living room, well, at least I’m not going to do it alone. Pilates sucks slightly less hairy goat testicles, mostly because holy crap I can actually see progress. It gets easier! Which is exactly the boost that I need to keep going. Also, nothing makes you feel like an exercise goddess like being so sore that to so much as sneeze sends you into a world of muscle pain. As perverse as it sounds, I love being sore because it is a constant reminder that I got off my ass and did something good for myself.

So, while I’m not fitting back into those old jeans quite yet, I am happy to be making progress and seeing a slightly smaller number on the scale. Although I still contend that anyone who claims to get a ‘runners high’ is seriously psychotic. Because running sucks hai… well, you get the idea.

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