It’s been a while since I’ve written but today, I feel inspired.
Do you ever feel like your partner or best friend is cheating on you when they try a new restaurant or food without you? Have you ever been reduced to “WHEN DID YOU EAT THERE?!” when they tell you, “oh yeah, that place is good.” Have you ever genuinely felt hurt, betrayed or just plain jealous when you find out he/she tried spaghetti squash/specialty hot dogs/ frozen hot chocolate etc. without you? I have. I’m feeling it right now.
Today, my husband snagged a day off from work since he has all sorts of extra vacation time he needs to use up by the end of the year. He’s out and about, having a day to himself while I’m at work and babycakes is at the sitter. Don’t judge, we try to tell our sitter well in advance if she won’t be getting paid a full week and since this was super last minute, we dropped babycakes off in the morning. Well, I’m over here
reading buzzfeed buried in work and he starts checking in to the movie theater on facebook and then he checks into Hot Doug’s, a place we’ve talked about visiting for years. Suddenly, I’m not even mad that he watched Thor without me (which I refer to as movie cheating, another subject for another time) or that he’s having the time of his life on his day off, I’m mad he is eating gourmet hot dogs without me. This may be a mixture of the uptick in my hormones lately or the fact that I’ve been dying for a day off for weeks and/or both but I suddenly feel like I’ve been cheated on. And although in real life, I realize it’s not actually adultery or even anything bad, I can’t help but feel a little slighted (sorry, boo). I’m slowly coming to my senses as we speak and also, I’ve been to many a restaurant or bar that my husband has yet to visit but for some crazy reason (probably his OFFSPRING I’M GROWING), I feel entitled to my jealousy.
Now, I know this is supposed to be a blog about my weight loss and health journey and, for the time being, about having a healthy pregnancy but dangit, a girl wants a fancy hot dog every once in a while too! We’ve been living barely a mile from this particular place for over a year now and on the one day I’m crazy jealous that I don’t have a day off, he goes and eats these two pieces of deliciosity:
At the end of the day, I will look back and laugh at myself for this because really, they’re just hot dogs. What’s really interesting to me, however, is the fact that for a moment I really genuinely felt hurt. What is that about? My husband gets to make the most out of his day off and hit up a restaurant we’ve been dying to try for years and I feel like he’s cheating on me? That’s nuts. Could be the baby hormones. Could be the huge influx of work I’ve had to do at my job these last few weeks. And it could also be my emotional eating creeping up on me.
In the past, eating something indulgent in secret or finishing off leftovers I knew everyone else would want somehow gave me a false sense of joy. On the flipside, finding an empty cookie plate or a wrapper of that thing I’ve been hoping to get my hands on all day genuinely made me feel sad, betrayed even. Well for a fleeting moment today, those feelings came back. I didn’t even know gourmet hot dogs would be on the menu today for one of us and now suddenly I’m mad I didn’t get to have them too? Come on Mariana, you’re better than that.
But you KNOW what I’m talking about. Food for many of us is enjoyable. It’s an experience and trying new foods and/or restaurants is an activity we may cherish with our partners, especially when you live in a place like Chicago where incredible restaurants pop up around you everyday. But it can also be this thing we can get really obsessive about pretty quickly. I’m already looking back on the last hour thinking really? All that for some hot dogs? But that’s the old me reacting to the fact that I missed out. I didn’t get a piece of the delicious pie. I don’t get the bragging rights he does. And those are the more unhealthy and dark sides to my relationship with food that have plagued me for years.
So mancakes, I have nothing but love for ya. No really, you’re the freakin’ love of my life. And I’m glad you got to enjoy your day off with a good movie and tasty eats
that I only hope give you heartburn. I’m already over it and I look forward to the next time we get to explore a new place together.
My, my…I’ve been busy! After a hiatus from running, I got 15K in this past week! Not that I recommend going about it that way because today is my first day of not being sore in about 5 days.
On Thursday, I remembered that I signed up for Not Fast Just Fabulous‘ Virtual 5K benefiting the Challenged Athletes Foundation, a non-profit that provides support, rehabilitation and access for athletes with physical challenges. So hit the gym for a lunch time run. It took me forever to finish, a symptom of my lack of keeping up with my running stamina. All I was hoping for was that I finished in under an hour and I did (in 56 minutes).
This was a pretty strong indicator of how my 10K would go on Saturday. Several months ago, a friend of mine proposed that we try out a 10K together. I was all for it until I took this little test that let me know I’d be completely wiped out for the next 3 months. And wiped out I was! I signed up for the Chicago’s Perfect 10K and within a week or so I was dealing with first trimester exhaustion and nausea and I set aside pretty much all fitness. I had gone into it with a 30 day plan to get my mileage and strength up but I could barely get out of bed for work most mornings, much less a run. Fortunately, these two races happened as soon I was feeling normal again but unlike my last pregnancy, I’m much bigger much sooner this time and I’ve just had to roll with it the best that I could.
So I finished this bad boy in under 2 hours (look at that! 2 of my 5K’s put together!) and I was hurtin’ for certain until yesterday afternoon. My nutritionist warned me that running while pregnant could be risky since my joints and ligaments are more malleable and more likely to be injured under a lot of pressure and strain. Boy, my hips were hurting by around mile 4.5 and by the end of Saturday night, my knee was throbbing and stiff. I’ve since then iced and heated everything plus rested and hydrated (and ate all the things too) and I feel like myself again!
I’m really glad I went through with these runs. I had a moment as I was nearing the finish line of my 10K on Saturday when I started to get really emotional. I thought about my last pregnancy, where I was in my life then and how I would have never in a million years considered doing something like this on a normal day, much less pregnant. I was near tears as I crossed the finish line and realized I just did something huge. I ran/walked 6.2 miles along the lake with the Chicago skyline in the background, one of my biggest fitness accomplishments to date at a time when I could have easily excused myself from such a challenge. Let’s just say, it took everything not to burst out in tears!
As for the race itself, I really enjoyed it! We started at Navy Pier and ran along the lake front path until we reached the museum campus and started the turn by running around Grant Park. Sadly, I took no pictures of the gorgeous Chicago scenery, I really couldn’t stop or I’d never start again! It was the perfect day for a race though, mid 50′s, no clouds in the sky, plenty of sunshine. It was wonderful! My only complaint is that the run back was along the lower lake front path and the cement was severely damaged making it a dangerous path for those that needed to stay to the right. I couldn’t really run along this part if I wanted to, I was too nervous I’d twist my ankle with my floppy ligaments and all. One thing I will say is that trying to run to the end of Navy Pier is like a mind game! You keep thinking you’re close and then there’s like a mile and a half left. You get to the first big ship that’s docked on the water along the pier and think, yeah! almost there! Crap! Half a mile left! So that part was pretty grueling but I probably would have felt that way no matter where I was running. I just reeeeally wanted to finish and this picture was that exact thought crossing my mind:
All in all, I’m really friggin’ proud of myself! Holy cow, I did a 10K! I did a 10K while pregnant! I think it’s safe to say I’ve arrived on the other side of “would never do it” to “challenge accepted!”. And now I’m a 10K finisher and I know I can only go up from here
Thanks to all of you who showed me some love for my announcement last week! It’s been really fun hearing how excited you are for me and my growing family. It’s been a fun ride thus far, my second trimester is upon me and besides my achy body and need for a little extra sleep most days I’m feeling good! My energy is back up and I’m making progress in wanting to get back into the fitness game.
Speaking of which, I’ve had a few things on my mind lately. As you know, this is my second pregnancy so I’ve been around the baby-building block before. I loved being pregnant the first time and I’m remembering why all over again now. It’s quite literally the coolest thing I have ever done in my entire life. I love the way my body changes to accommodate a little growing person , I don’t mind the stretch marks and the bloating and the overall discomfort even though I’m the first to complain when I get the chance. It’s all so fascinating to me, I feel like a science experiment in which my innards are rearranged, I grow temporary parts like a placenta and amniotic sac and my body produces and pumps twice the amount of blood than it does when I’m not pregnant. That, my friends, is really freakin’ cool.
Also on my mind? How I can do things differently this time. Last pregnancy, I had yet to adopt a healthier lifestyle and it was pretty much impossible to do since I was still in graduate school and working full-time. I was really just practicing the don’ts of pregnancy to keep my baby as healthy as possible (i.e. don’t drink alcohol, smoke, take unapproved meds, eat unpasteurized foods and raw meats/fish, etc.). Working out was not on the list nor a whole lot of clean eating. Those are things I’m working on including this time around because I really want to get back in the game as soon as I am able.
Along those same lines, I also witnessed the explosion over Maria Kang’s weird attempt at motivating people by reposting (cuz she originally posted it a year ago) her version of a “fitspiration” poster. Now, if you want to know my opinion, it’s this: Maria lives a lifestyle that is extremely conducive to staying on top of her fitness and for that I respect her for not using motherhood as a reason to stop exemplifying the industry for which she is a part of. What irks me about her attempt at “fitspiration” is that she stated in an interview that what she wanted the poster to say was this: “I wanted to say, ‘I know you think you don’t have time if you have kids. But if I can do it, you can do it, too.’. Man Maria, you should have just said that. Really, those words are far more inspiring and supportive in my opinion, it’s a bummer that it became this sensationalized fat-shaming/fit-shaming/mothers vs. mothers thing. Instead she chose the words “What’s your excuse?” which in any situation can be hurtful and shaming to some as opposed to her more supportive statements that would have probably been a better choice. But you know, people do things either to inspire or provoke and in some cases to attempt to do both. And in that, she succeeded. Nice job Maria.
On most days I have some legit excuses, on others, I don’t. Either way, I could care less about your conventionally hot post-baby bod, Maria, not all of us can ever look like that regardless of how many or how little babies we have or workouts we do. We just won’t, I’m good with it and if I were to choose someone to motivate me to let go of my excuses and just do the dang thing, I’ll pick someone who’s a little more conducive to my need for unconditional self-love and support while making me sweat something fierce. If you need an example, check out my Fitbloggin ’13 post about Patricia Moreno from IntenSati Fitness. But that’s me and I know many people, including a few of my friends, family and followers agree with Maria and if that gets you up and moving, I respect that and high-five you for it. Really, whatever works as long as it gets done, amiright?
Anyway, the point of all of this is to say I’m excited to have better outcomes after this baby makes his/her grand appearance. I’m already in much better shape, with cholesterol that’s 40 points lower (as of May 2013) than last time, no anemia detected in my blood work from 8 weeks ago and I’m already shopping for maternity clothes that are 2 sizes smaller than my last pregnancy. Check it:
So I guess you could say, I’m feeling pretty rock star about having this baby. I already know the hard work is paying off by how I feel this time around.
I have been DYING to write this post for WEEKS!
Yes! Casa Unfluff is having another baby! We are ecstatic and we can’t wait to meet Babycakes 2.0 (or baby dos as I like to call him/her) So. Here are the things that have been going on these last few months:
1. My last major workout project was training for the Pretty Muddy Run that occurred back in August. Right after that, the fatigue and nausea hit me pretty hard and I was down for the count for pretty much all of September. I went to the gym about twice a week until a few weeks ago when I stopped going altogether.
2. I never really had morning sickness with my daughter but this time around, I was nauseated for almost 3 weeks straight! I had to force feed myself most meals, ate mostly bland, processed things cuz fresh food grossed me out and although I usually have a terrible sense of smell, some days I could smell EVERYTHING all at once and it was awful.
3. I thought first trimester last time was exhausting but now that I have a toddler among other full time commitments, I would fall asleep on the couch after dinner everyday from about weeks 6-9 this time around and crawl into bed at least an hour earlier than usual most days.
4. I have had a terrible time staying motivated enough to keep working out! I’m so tired nowadays that the thought of running and/or getting sweaty repulses me. Yes, I know I can’t stop working out now and that it is in fact the best time to keep exercising. My energy levels are back on the rise lately and I have a 10K in 2 weeks I have to run so I’m well aware that I need to get my shit together. I have accepted the fact that I will do my best and FINISH the race but if I don’t run the whole thing, I am ok with that and I will add running a full 10K to my list of post-baby fitness goals for next year.
5. Things are so different now that I’m more fit! I feel so much stronger this time around and I look awesome! I do! I look like I’m glowing, I have more confidence in my body and even though I’m already showing (which everyone says happens after the first pregnancy), I don’t feel self-conscious nor am I scared about getting big and swollen like last time (well I will get big but I’m looking forward to it). My health stats are great, I’ve committed to fighting my anemia and my latest blood test proves that I am NOT anemic right now AND since the day I found out I was pregnant over 2 months ago, I have only gained 1.5 lbs (even though my eating hasn’t been as on point as usual).
Overall, this will be a different pregnancy because I’m a different person now. Last time, I had no energy ever because I didn’t have an established workout routine or good eating habits. And although last week’s hot wings and yesterday’s cheeseburger and chocolate sundae were my idea and me giving in to some cravings, I’ve already worked on compensating for those moments of giving-in by cutting out excess snacking and most of my boredom-related calories because I’m committed to not getting carried away this time. Also, like last time but earlier in this pregnancy, I’m getting fuller faster and I’m not pushing past that fullness like I used to as the old Mariana. I’m really trying hard to pay attention to how I’m feeling and the choices I am making lately. Some days have been bad (like really bad, almost all three meals bad) but most days are balanced out nicely and I’ve been mostly intuitive with my choices.
Additionally, I’ve joined a research study through my hospital called MomFit. I haven’t been chosen for the control group or intervention group yet but they will be tracking my health stats and if I’m chosen for the intervention group I’ll meet with a nutritionist and have a postpartum wellness coach! This is a study for women who are starting off their pregnancies overweight in an effort to learn what kind of interventions might help prevent excess pregnancy weight gain and healthier babies and mamas. I’m really excited about this! I went in today for initial screening and they have me wearing an activity tracker for the next 9 days. It’s not as cute as my fitbit flex though:
So that’s my big announcement and the reason why you haven’t heard much from me lately! It’s been not so easy keeping up with all the super Unfluff stuff and I’ve had to slow down and work on accepting that I’ll be putting on a little bit of weight again and have switched instead to wholesome eating and at least getting my 10K steps in as much as possible. On to Adventures in Pregnancy! I’m really excited about this next little chapter of our lives
That’s me blowin’ the dust off this blog. I know, I know. I got more content comin’ atcha in the next few weeks don’t worry. Shout out to those still reading this bad boy! You rock my socks.
So here are some things that are awesome right now:
1. My latest before and after picture showing about a 44 pound weight loss!
2. This meme that captures my fitness life right now in a digital nutshell
The countdown is on! I’m less than a month away from the Chicago’s Perfect 10 race! 6.2 glorious miles along Chicago lakefront starting at Navy Pier! I hope I can run the whole thing but if not, I’ll be happy just to finish. It’ll be my first spinny medal…”oooooo”…after that, I’m not sure what I’ll be doing next but I have a few ideas I’ll be happy to share once I knock this bad boy out of the way.
So those are a few of my awesome things right now. How about you? What’s your latest non-scale victory or overall plan for awesome?
Have I told you how much I love the blog A Black Girl’s Guide to Weight Loss? Erika Nicole Kendall kills it talking about everything under the sun from body image to race and culture, sex to weight loss, politics to media, class to fitness and clean eating. I came across this hugely profound post about Self-Compassion and Weight Loss. Wow. It really hit home. Check out a few of my favorite parts:
“The research suggests that giving ourselves a break and accepting our imperfections may be the first step toward better health. People who score high on tests of self-compassion have less depression and anxiety, and tend to be happier and more optimistic. Preliminary data suggest that self-compassion can even influence how much we eat and may help some people lose weight.”
And this too:
“I will admit, though, that I think there’s something missing from this entire conversation: people feel an inability to exercise restraint with food because, more often than not, they’re dealing with processed foods that alter their ability to “eat just one.” The fact that I couldn’t control myself when it came to certain foods was something that’d cause me to beat myself up a little bit, too. I can admit that.
See? That’s an example of self-compassion. My admitting that I wouldn’t have been able to control myself or lose my weight if I were still around processed foods? That’s me being compassionate to myself, being sympathetic to my shortcomings… instead of acting like my shortcomings don’t have to be acknowledged because some mystical mental power should exist to save me (and then calling myself an idiot, a loser and a failure for not being able to tap into it.)”
Whoa. Look at that! You see how profound this language is? Imagine instead of beating yourself up for something you ate or did/didn’t do, you have a real conversation with yourself about what went wrong, why it happened, forgiving yourself and moving on. Forgiving yourself and moving on. Much like you would with someone you love and truly care about. Imagine that, treating yourself the same way you treat and care for others. That is powerful and that can go a really long way.
I’ve been there, sometimes I go back to that place where I feel guilty and beat myself up. But then I think about where I am today compared to where I was before I started this journey and I realize that I’ve made it this far because I chose to practice self-compassion instead. I started making healthier choices because I finally started engaging in self-care. When I fall off the wagon, I’m realizing it’s because I switched over to practicing willpower and failing instead of self-compassion and feeling cared for.
Does make sense? I sure hope so!
Anywho, how about another blog shout out? Thanks to Brooke from Brooke Not On A Diet for hosting the Back To Basics Challenge in September. I practiced a few of Brooke’s basic rules to healthy living and weight loss and I felt great! To be honest, I only lost a pound this month after practicing Scale-Less September and weighing in for the first time this morning. It’s not much but I’m ok with it and this was certainly one of those “do what you can” months in which I spent at least 2 weeks fighting off feelings of yuckiness and fatigue due to some harsh allergies and an uptick in some of my vitamin deficiencies (super low Vitamin D and low in Iron). I started up my Vitamin D and Iron supplements a little over a week ago and those have helped bring my energy back up so it’s back to the gym I go! Yesterday I got in a 2 mile run on the treadmill and today I got in 30 minutes of walking at lunch. I’m hoping to get back the cardio group classes at lunch starting tomorrow. I’m glad to be getting back to it!
What are your goals for October?
Hey kids. I know I’ve been pretty MIA lately and I apologize. I have had a very busy and eventful social life lately that has kept me from being able to be alone with my thoughts about healthy living and eating these days. The truth is, it seems my immune system has decided to slow me down lately and I’ve had to take it easy this last week or so. It could be a combination of a cold and new allergens permeating my sinuses but I have had low energy and have needed to rest more than anything. So I’ve been listening to my body and taking her cues and taking it easy. My daily workouts last week were daily walks during my lunch hour and I did manage to get to the gym once and actually ran on the treadmill. Surprisingly, however, I didn’t feel as completely renewed and awesome as I usually do after a workout and that all led to my taking a sick day on Thursday when I woke up feeling horrible.
All of this is to say that I’m doing quite well despite feeling so icky lately. I’m not ignoring the signs my body is sending and today is actually the first day in quite a few where I can say I woke up feeling energized so I’m happy about that. Eating hasn’t been nutritionally great but I have noticed a few things this past week that are sure-fire signs that I’m a changed woman!
1. I don’t feel much like grazing throughout the day anymore: I used to be such a huge snacker but nowadays, I’ve been pretty content with 3 meals a day and nothing in between besides water or tea. That’s a huge change for me compared to where I was last year when I always felt like a bottomless pit without a good excuse to be (read: I wasn’t exercising). This leads me to my next observation:
2. I don’t get hung up on food anymore: Not every meal HAS to be this monumental event of colors, flavors and tastes. Sure, I would love it if every meal was like that but if I’m just having oatmeal today or a sandwich for lunch, I’m cool with it as long as my hunger is satiated and I can keep functioning normally. In other words, eating is no longer an emotional event for me. This. is. huge.
3. My mind has slowed its obsession over my weight: About a month or two ago, if you were to plug a projector into my brain, this is what you would probably see:
Side note: shout out to Google for the bizarre things you find when you type “weight loss” into google images…
I constantly thought about weight loss. My mind was a run on sentence of “Calories in, calories out. Need to work out. Did I pack enough vegetables? Did I eat enough fruit today? My daughter needs new shoes. Forgot to call the dentist. When will I run again? I hope I lost more weight this week. What will I do if I didn’t lose weight?” It was exhausting and at times, scary obsessive. I know that weight management and healthy eating is a lifestyle but when you’re in the process of losing a lot of weight before you go into maintenance mode, these thoughts are ever present and they can consume you. Now that I’ve opted for a simpler approach to get to my goals and also, I chose to practice Scale-Less September, I’m feeling less obsessed and more action-oriented. It’s like I’ve crossed over to another realm where I am actively making better choices because I enjoy them not just because I’m trying to lose weight.
So that’s where I’m at right now and I’m feeling pretty good about it. I am going to start getting back into the gym this week, especially since this week on Brooke Not On A Diet’s Back to Basics challenge, we are to focus on incorporating more exercise into our day. Perfect timing since I really need to get my rear in gear again! What are you going to challenge yourself to get back into this week? What have you observed has changed for you throughout your journey to a healthier life?