#100daysofHappy

Starting today.

I did this last summer, and I think I didn’t make it all the way through.  I want to focus on finding joy, so I’m resurrecting this project and going with 100 days of happy.  Each day, I’ll find something to be joyful about.  I’ll put it on my Instagram and Facebook.

I also want to write more, so I’m also considering #100daysofWriting and I want to make more art, so I’m also eyeballing #100daysofDoodles.  Ooo, #100daysofFitness!

This 100 days thing is catchy.

today. weight. workouts. vacations. dreams.

I’ve gained a little weight.  Not much, just 4 or 5 pounds, but when you’re on a weight loss journey, it’s disappointing to see any gains at all.  It’s my own fault (of course, how could it be anyone else’s?).  I’ve been using emotions as an excuse to binge out on chips (two nights ago), chipotle (three times in the last month), donuts (last week), and every day this week – candy and/or a cookie.  This is not a good type of gain.

Since my last IMPACT group ended, I’ve started trying to get back to the gym more consistently.  I didn’t perform my best in my last group.  I gained weight, I lost strength, I barely wanted to show up.  But I did show up, and that got me at least 2 workouts in a week, and I went to most weekend workouts, so I managed three.  But that’s a bare effort, and when I was there I sandbagged and didn’t really engage with anyone. I’m trying to fix that.  This week, I went on Tuesday, Thursday, and I’ll go today and tomorrow and Sunday.  Next week, I’ll go every day.  I’m also noticing that for the last three weeks or so, I run out of juice about halfway or three quarters of the way through my workout.  I get weak and sometimes light-headed.  I’m sure it’s due to the part where I’m not eating well.  But part of me dreads the idea that this can also be hormonal. I am 45, after all.

Finding my new routine is harder than I thought it would be.  I get up every morning at 5:30am, which is at least an hour earlier than before, and I basically just pull on shorts and a sweatshirt and hop in the car.  I pack my bags the night before, so I can leave by 6am.  My teeth get brushed, Oliver gets to pee and eat breakfast, and that’s it, I’m on the road.  I’m listening to Nerdist podcasts to pass the time while driving.  I shower in the locker room at work.

My after-work routine is all over the map.  Some days, I went home early. But then, I’m not comfortable at “home” really yet, not for extended hours, so I’d go window shopping or to the movies to pass time before going home. My roommates are such nice people, and I really do enjoy them. I’m just not used to always having people around, and it’s hard for me to relax. So mostly, I go home and take Oliver out a little, heat up something for dinner (or worse, pick something up on the way home) and then go to bed. I spend a lot of time in my bed.  I watch tv in bed.  I read in bed. I fart around on my phone in bed.

The other day, I wrote my cousin Kjersti and said, “hey, think if I come over there to live, we can find me a nice norwegian man to marry?” and I was only half kidding.  Then, I wrote her again and said maybe we should start with another trip over for a vacation, and we can take some road trips and see some new fjords, mountains, and coast-lines.  She likes that idea too.

I did this whole “roommates” thing to pay off my debt.  I’ve been living there a month, and I’d paid off the small credit card, and then Oliver had dental problems and I charged that card right back up again to pay for it.  So, a month in and I’ve got nothing to show for it.  Well, except I bought myself a new backpack and two new pair of shoes.  And I got to buy my shampoo and conditioner that I like so much, but wasn’t buying before because it’s a little pricier.

Which brings me to vacations and dreams.  Besides paying off my debt, I also want to save up and take a vacation.  A real vacation, with airplanes and hotels and rental cars and public transit and walking around exploring and eating food, and window shopping and seeing new places and people and cultures, and museums, and parks and, breathing. Just, breathing.  This feels like such a selfish thing to want to do. Like it shouldn’t be a priority at all, not with this much debt and the goal of paying it off.  Like I’m not supposed to want or do anything else until that’s done.  But I really need a getaway. I do. Yeah, that’s a “rich people” problem. I know there are people who could never afford it, who don’t even dream of it because it’s that far from possible… I know this is a self-indulgent desire.  But I still want it.  And I need it to be okay that I want it, and I need it to be okay that I do it.  Okay with who?  Who’s allowed to judge me for this?  No one.  No one is allowed to, and yet, I sit here in judgement of myself, comparing my circumstances to those I’ve imagined for other people.  Just shut up, Kim.  Shut up and go on your vacation, and enjoy it.  FOR PETE’S SAKE.

In June, I need to pay off that credit card again and then put it away. In a box, buried in my closet, so it doesn’t get used again. That’s the goal for June.

Goals for June:

  • Pay off the Visa
  • Take an overnight trip to Calistoga and have a mud bath
  • Workout with intention and energy 4-5 times per week
  • 1 Chipotle (per month, ongoing. can’t eliminate it, don’t want to, but I can make it a treat instead of a regular.)
  • no more buying candy, cookies, or chips. I get sour patch kids and popcorn at the movies, that’s IT.
  • write more, do more art

Maybe even get comfortable enough at my new place to hang out there, “at home”.

simplify

Things have got too complicated and too busy. I’m simplifying.

I’m going back to 4 meals a day, counting my calories, and eating what I like.  Quality. Protein.  Meal-prep.  No stress.

I’m not spending any money during the week.  Shopping on the weekends for food and necessities, and a little joy, but no unnecessary spending.

Focus on making payments to the credit cards.  Feel good about it.  The end.

Plan a trip. Pick a place, plan the trip, then go on the trip. Stop worrying about it.

Just stop worrying.

moved.

I moved in with Sarah & Ian. I’m here for anywhere from 1 month to 12 months.  The goal is to pay off all my credit card debt. Secondary goals are to also pay off my Fidelity loan (making me debt-free), and build some savings.

My room is on the first floor, next to the kitchen.  I also have use of the downstairs living room.  It’s a nice set up.

I was pretty stressed about all this before I actually physically moved.  I kept trying to talk myself down, to focus on all the positive aspects, but I was really being drawn down.  I shared a bit about it with my Impact group, but I think that was the wrong choice.  Some people said nothing, some people said nice and supportive things, and one person was kind of a dick about it. Said I was bringing her and the rest of the group down.  Started avoiding me.  That’s cool, I don’t need her as a friend, especially if that’s how she rolls.  I don’t have time for that, and I don’t want to go chasing down someone to change their opinions.

It occurred to me the other day, I’m living closer to Venture, Chip Ingram’s church. Maybe so close that I’ll try attending again, at least once.  I did like it there the few times I went.

What is it, what human characteristic is it, that as soon as something changes, we start thinking about “what’s next”?  I just moved in here two days ago, and I’ve already started thinking about what’s next.  Where will I go. What will I do.  Who will be with me or not with me?  I probably should settle down first. Finish unpacking.  Get comfortable.

But I can still keep dreaming:

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Noise

Filter out the noise. It’s so loud. Everyone has something to say, and I can’t even listen anymore because I can’t hear anyone. All I hear is noise. Today when I was out walking, I realized I haven’t actually listened, really listened, to someone in a long time. I’ve done the unthinkable. I’ve started filtering, pulling out bits and pieces, looking for the things that require my attention, instead of paying attention with my whole self. I don’t want to be that person. 

Besides that, I can’t hear my own self. 

My days are exercises in Being Busy and Having Things To Do. 

There’s so many people talking. And like me, they’re not listening either.

Everyone needs to be quiet. Listen. 

I need to be quiet and listen. 

Focus. On me. On my family. On God. 

Probably not in that order, but I have to start somewhere, I can’t hold out any longer. 

That’s it. 

I’m trying

Yesterday I was so stuck in my head – at the track – about the running.  I was a little anxious about it, and I texted with my coach, and he was full of tough love and encouraging, and I felt inspired.  When I got there, and we did the warm-up lap, I was so far behind, and all the judgements started happening inside my head.  About being too slow.  About not having kept up with my running over the winter.  About how I sucked.  And I tried to push all that out of my head and focus on just the work right in front of me.  My calves seized up, my achilles started to sting, and I walked the last corner of the lap, then stretched my calves.  Then we did some warmup exercises and those all went just fine.  Then we did some sprints, and that was ok too.  I was slowr than I wanted to be, but I could feel my body starting to loosen up and wake up, so I was still doing ok.

Let me pause here to say this: Yesterday was a hard day.  A lot of little meaningless things went poorly, and my vacation got unceremoniously dumped by the organizers, but it all sort of built on each other and around noon I stopped fighting against the crabby and just figured it was going to be a crabby day.  This was a mistake. I should have tried harder to keep a positive attitude.

Back at the track.  We did a timed lap, 400m.  I started to hear my coach in my head, telling me that if I failed it was because I let myself fail, because I was mentally beat.  I tried to not be.  I tried to sing positive songs in my head, and not focus on anyone else’s pace but my own and I tried to just keep running.  When the last person passed me, I got angry with myself and I went even slower and then I walked a little and then I finished, dead last.  FUCK. Of course I could have done better, right?  Why couldn’t I have?  What the hell is WRONG with me.  At this point, I’m pissed at myself and I pout.  And tell a friend to shut up when she tries to tough love me out of my funk. I tried to just stay quiet, hoping that my attitude wouldn’t affect anyone but you know that always fails.  So then I felt bad because I was being an ass, but I didn’t change my attitude, I just felt worse.

Then, we do a timed mile. I decided to not pay attention to anyone, at all, and just run my mile.  I wasn’t the last person for most of the mile, I was slower than I wanted to be, but I was consistent and persistent.  One of the other girls would run in spurts, and then walk.  She’d pass me, then slow up and walk, then pass me, then slow up and walk. It was frustrating me.  Someone else ran next to me, seemingly keeping my pace for like a half a lap, and then sped up just enough to be about 30 seconds ahead of me.  In the end, I finished last.  My mile was 13:32, and I was upset with myself but tried to not act like a pouty baby like I’d done before. I stretched with everyone, high-fived with everyone, and then when we did a set of walking lunges to finish up the workout, one of the other women lunged alongside me, giving a pep talk the whole time.  It was as clear to her as it is to me that my battle isn’t physical.  I wasn’t gassed.  I could’ve run longer, or faster.  My battle is mental.

My battle is always mental.

My coach asked me later, what’s it going to take to get me out of my head?  I wish I knew.  I hate this, so much.

it makes me feel like a failure, every time, even when my performance is perfectly acceptable.

I want to just love myself for who I am at any given moment, and not be so worried, and not get so angry with myself when I don’t meet some way-too-high expectations I set for myself. It’s like I set myself up to fail, over and over again. WTF.

I don’t want my teammates, my friends, or my coaches to give up on me.

I feel like I have to get this under control and figured out, or else they’ll be done with me.

Why do I always worry about people leaving me?  Add to this the part where I think my hormones are starting to run amuck, and well, some days, I’m a mess.  But some days I’m not, and I’m just fine (like today), and I need to focus on those and not the messy ones!

de-load week

The final week of Strength class, with next week being Test Week.  That’s when we do our 1 rep max test again and see what strength gains we’ve achieved.  I had three goals going into this class: get comfortable with the barbell (stop being afraid of it), focus on proper form (so I don’t hurt myself), and if possible, gain some strength and muscle and lose some body fat.  That last goal has three things wrapped up in it, but I’m happy with any of it. I already feel like I’ve achieved the first two goals.  I’m not afraid of the bar anymore, or of putting heavy weight on it.  And my form is much better.  The rest will take care of itself!

Box jumps, on the other hand.  Sigh.  I continue to be able to land a 12 or 14in jump, but anything higher and I freak out and can’t do it.  I’m getting closer though.

Pull-ups.  Some days I have to use three bands and some days only two.  I can tell you this though: I can hold myself up for longer periods now, and I don’t swing my body around as much.  It’s coming along.  I’ve given myself a year to get the pull-ups, so I think the thing to do is increase my practice time.

De-load week is all about lower weights and higher reps.  Last night was back squats and we did:

Warm up 

5 at 40% (70lbs)

5 at 45% (80)

5 at 50% (90)

5 at 55% (100)

Working Set

5 sets of 10 reps at 60% (105lbs)

That’s A LOT of squats and my bootie is sore today!

Then we did 3×20 pull-ups and 3×10 box jumps.

All that, and my calorie burn was something like 250 calories, because that’s all strength work and not cardio.  Sometimes it’s still difficult for me to accept that this 8 weeks was not about burning calories. It was about building muscle.  And if I did my job even half right, I’ve gained enough muscle that when I go back to regular classes in two weeks, my calorie burns should be higher, I’ll be burning more fat, and my weight loss will start again.  I can’t wait!

moving, soon

First let me say this: that last post was a big ‘ol whine fest for me.  I was having a moment.  It’s over.  It’s all good.

I’m moving soon. Beginning of May. My lease is up, the rent is increasing to an amount outside of my ability or desire to pay.  I have limited options, because I’m carrying too much debt and my monthly expenses are too high, and I seem to be in a never-ending cycle of debt.  I started thinking I’d take a year, or however long it takes to get out of credit card debt (at the very least), and put myself into a roommate situation.  Sarah and Ian offered me a room at their house.  I agreed, and with one or two details left to work out, that’s where I’ll move in May.

All the regular moving stress applies. Inventory, evaluation, clearing out, packing. Money. Moving truck. Movers. Moving date to schedule.

But there’s this other piece I haven’t been paying attention to, because I didn’t want to give it power.  Turns out, it had power all on it’s own and it’s been eating away at me and causing some stress.  Stress manifesting itself in tension headaches, being over-emotional about things that aren’t really that important, sleeplessness, general anxiety.  Lethargy.  Apathy.

The other day someone mentioned it might be the move causing these things.  And immediately, I knew they were right.

I’m doing the right thing – roommates, debt pay-off, timelines, budgets, planning.  It’s all going to pay off in the end.

But I’m about to be living with people. Not by myself. Not in my own space. Without my things. Without the anonymity and freedom I’m used to having.  Right now, no one knows if I binge watch Warehouse 13, or take too long to do my dishes, or walk around in a towel for an hour after my shower. I have all this freedom to just be myself in my own space, and I’ve not taken time to properly appreciate that until now, when it’s about to change.

There will be PEOPLE in the same house.  It’s THEIR house. Their things. Their space.  I’ll have a bedroom, and possibly a small living space in their dining room (which they don’t use, but walk through on their way around the house).  That’s good.  I mean, I’ll have my own space.  It’ll be smaller than I’m used to, and most of my things will be in storage.

I’m just nervous. And I’m mourning the loss of my current circumstances at the same time I don’t know exactly what to expect in my new ones.

They probably feel something similar.  Having a new person in their home.  Changing their own habits.  Having someone else’s dog in their home.

I’m afraid of being judged.  I’m afraid if they see me as just me, not the person who visits once a month to play games and have chats and then leave again, but me the person I am when I’m at home (or some version of that person, since it’ll be a transition)… they won’t approve.  I’m not even sure I’m afraid they won’t like me.  I think I’m afraid they’ll think I’m some bad kind of weird or annoying.

This, of course, brings up thoughts of my goals – one of which is to stop caring so much about what other people think.  Who cares if they think I’m annoying or weird?  Why should I care?  Am I somehow so terrible that I’d HAVE to change myself based on what they think?  NO.  I’m not.  I’m fine the way I am.  I’m awesome the way I am. I need to not worry about this, and I need to not beat myself up for worrying or not worrying.  It’s not that big a deal.  It’s just roommates.  People do it ALL the time.  People in far less favorable conditions than me.

I think though, that even though I know it’s no big deal, it’s going to be just fine, it’s only temporary, and it’s all a good thing – even with all that – I still think it’s ok to be a little apprehensive.  After all, this IS a big change.  I just need to not make it bigger than it really is.  I need to trust my own judgement, my own character, and trust them as friends who don’t mean anything other than to be generous.

I am so tired of thinking about food

I am so tired of thinking about food.  I’m tired of thinking about whether or not I’m getting enough protein, too many carbs.  About how I can’t have any cake at Pat’s retirement party because it’ll fuck up my macros, because I’ll gain like two pounds if I do, and YOU KNOW I WILL.  A single indiscretion makes my weight go way the hell up, by pounds at a time.  I’m tired of weighing myself every damn day so I can be sure to stay on track.  I’m tired of thinking about being on track.  I’m tired of being this person who can’t be spontaneous about food, and if I am, then I feel guilt and shame, and I just WAIT for someone to notice and call me out on it.  I’m tired of feeling bad about food.  I’m tired of it all.

Yes, I want to lose weight.

But GOD DAMMIT do I have to count every fucking calorie for the rest of my damn life?  Do I have to watch so freaking carefully ALL THE TIME?  Why?  Why is my metabolism so fucked up that I can’t just lose weight by counting calories and working out?  Or maybe it’s not my metabolism, maybe it’s just my brain.  Maybe my brain is what’s fucked up.  Yeah, that’s probably what it is.  So, that’s awesome. I love that my brain sabotages me at every damn turn.  AWESOME.

I like feeling fit. I like it very much. But I battle this inner demon, this damn thing that some might call depression and some might just call self-indulgent, too much thinking, to selfish, whatever the fuck.  This thing that lives inside me just constantly tells me I’m doing the wrong thing, and why bother, and I should just order a pizza and watch tv on my sofa.  Because wouldn’t that be nice?  It sure sounds nice.

But no. I’m going to meticulously count my calories and macros, and feel guilty about an apple because it’s too many carbs, until I can’t take it anymore and I binge out on that pizza, and add some cookies and chips to the pile because I might as well, since a whole pizza is way off plan anyway, might as well just screw it all.

And then wake up and feel guilty the next morning and spend two weeks trying to undo the damage I did in one night.

Welcome to my nightmare.

this is a tough transition.

I’m doing a whole lot of mental, emotional, psychological work on myself this year.  I’m trying really hard to change how I think about myself, and specifically how I think about myself “by default”.  For most of my life, I’ve questioned nearly everything.  I question and review all my conversations, I seek approval, I apologize too much.  I question my actions and my motives.  I think and re-consider my interactions with people.  I even go so far as to try to tailor my interactions with people so I can get approval, empathy, or some other type of response.  Instead of just being myself and letting my chips fall where they may.  Letting it be.  I force things.  I do this unconsciously.  I’m absolutely certain it stems from being bullied and not having many friends when I was a kid, from being in an abusive relationship, from having friends that encouraged me to do things I wouldn’t have otherwise done, but I did them because I wanted to have friends.  All this happened in my youth.  The only part of that history that should matter is that those were significant developmental years, and I formed some habits.  The rest of it doesn’t matter.  It was too long ago, and I’m a different person.  I don’t feel sorry for myself about it anymore.  (That is also a recent acknowledgement. I carried shame and guilt for most of my adult life.  That’s heavy baggage and hard to drop, but I really do believe I’ve done it.)

Now, I need to change my responses to situations, circumstances, and interactions.  I’m not needy anymore.  I’m not sad anymore.  I’m not ashamed anymore.  Those emotions may surface periodically, I am human after all, but I know that they are not WHO I AM, they are part of the tapestry that makes me ME, but they do not define me.

So, now, I’m hyper-aware and evaluating my actions under new criteria.  Yes, that means I’m still self-evaluating way too much.  That’s on the list of things to change, but for now, I’m trying to just at least recognize when I’ve said or done something that I don’t want to do anymore.  And I want this to become second nature.

I want to just BE MYSELF and be HAPPY about being myself.  It’s hard.  I think sometimes people get impatient with me.  Like I should have made this switch faster, and be done already.  Maybe that’s true.  But the reality is, I’m still working on it. Daily. Hourly. And I’m getting better.

I’m a dork.  Nerdy.  Sweet, kind, funny, open, trusting, suspicious, an excellent bullshit-detector, too perceptive for my own good, a bit modest, a bit socially awkward.  I have a big heart, but it’s a little protected so it might take me some time to show it to you.  I’m not up on all the pop culture, I don’t watch Game of Thrones, and I like Marvel movies.  I have a bit of an acerbic/dry/sarcastic sense of humor that sometimes people don’t understand.  But I’m funny, I promise you, I’m freaking hilarious 😉

I want so much to be a confident, self-loving, worthy person.  And I have to believe that I already am.  I ALREADY AM. I’m just learning to embrace it.  Please be patient with me.  I hope you don’t give up on me.  I want so much to make it through this transition and not lose friends over it. But if I do, then perhaps our season was over and I’ll be sad, but I will move on and be grateful for the time we had together.