Nov 15, 2014 - General    No Comments

Victoria’s Secret Thoughts

I have to speak out about this, it has been bugging me for the longest time, there is currently uproar about an ad. Yes, an advertisement. Victoria’s Secret posted an ad that said The Perfect “Body”; please note they put the word body in parenthesis. The reason being, they were talking about their lingerie line called Body by Victoria, I know this because I buy from that line.

Everyone blasted them saying oh you’re giving girls a self-esteem issue, number one, why are young girls looking at this, it is an ad aimed at adult women. B) It is their line; it was not a comment on women making themselves thinner. And lastly, really, with all of the things that are going on in this country this is what you choose to get upset about?

I find no fault in their advertisement, it did not make me want to binge and purge or become anorexic to fit into the body size of the ad. It did not make me want to slit my wrists because I am not that size and do not look like the women in the photo. It did remind me it is time to go in and get fitted for new bras, as I love that particular line they sell.

As an adult, if your self-esteem is so low that a simple ad makes you feel bad, you seriously need to seek help. Not sarcasm, not a joke, get some help, there are other things that need to make you lose sleep and feel bad. Children starving in our own country is one, a government that foists things upon the public that are not constitutional is another, these are just two things.

I am shocked that so much vitriol was thrown at Victoria’s Secret over this; did no one see the quotation marks? Does no one know about the different lines they carry and the names of them? This is like the time everyone was on the whole make Barbie fat bandwagon.

Everyone knows Victoria’s Secret models are thin, and busty and beautiful, and air brushed to the heavens in ads. They starve themselves for the runway show; they do whatever they have to do to maintain weight that is their choice in their chosen field of employment. Oh wait, what was the key word there, choice, these girls and women have made a choice, to be models. Not only models, but Victoria’s Secret models, that takes it to a whole new level because you will be modeling things that leave the majority of your body seen. Seen to be taken apart bit by bit by the public, and if these models were not flawless, heaven help them, because the backlash would be worse than the one for that simple ad.

People love to spew hate, and with the advent of the Internet, that hate is rampant due to the face that people believe they are anonymous. They spout whatever they can to get attention, it is insanity.

Leave the models alone, leave Victoria’s Secret alone, learn to read an ad, and leave Barbie alone. I for one, do not base my self-esteem on the images of others, if you are truly worried about your daughters, teach them to read, to think, to explore their world. That will give them self-esteem, self-awareness and a thought process that goes beyond the superficial.

Nov 14, 2014 - General    No Comments

Hello World, I’ve Missed You

Woke up to the best surprise, the last episode of Smallville, the one where Clark Kent flies and is in full Superman suit. Chloe reading the comic to her son and it ends with Clark opening his shirt getting ready to fly off to save the day. Full orchestra accompaniment. Greatness, it was a great ending to a great series, I have said it before, I’ll say it again, the CW just knows how to get DC heroes right. The writing, the casting, the directing all comes together in one beautiful show, they did it with Smallville and are now doing it with Arrow and Flash.

Well, I decided to give protein bars another try, this time Quest bars, thanks to my new friend Sallie Ann, who loaned me $2.50 to get one at Fitness Together, I tried the double chocolate one. Upon Vincent’s suggestion I microwaved it for a few seconds. Woweeee, I was ready to whoop it up! This bar rocks, it was a breakfast treat, I had it with my bulletproof coffee and thought I had literally died and gone to heaven. Combine this taste bonanza with a Friday off and well, you can imagine my euphoria.

I will be adding yoga to my routine on Wednesday, one night a week, and they have upped the cardio sessions. I will now be doing 45 minutes of cardio twice a week instead of 30 minutes. I seriously hope I survive, this past Thursday I literally thought Vincent was trying to do us in. Man oh man, that was a toughie, but I survived, I do believe we all did! So yay us!

I am still plugging along, learning to eat the right foods; the right combination of healthy fats, protein and carbs, it is an ongoing process. However, I am confident I will be able to conquer this thing that I have been battling since I was a child.

A date is fast approaching that I look forward to with happiness and joy and a little sadness. I can’t say what right now, I will afterwards, it is a joyous thing and I wish I could write about it now, however I am sworn to secrecy.

Well, I am done today folks, I am getting out of this chair, cleaning, then grocery shopping, then picking up my amazing granddaughter. Then family dinner, meatloaf tonight, with homemade gluten free bread, crescent rolls for the kids, mashed potatoes and salad. However for me, it will be meatloaf, plain potatoes with olive oil and salad. No bread, that is the devil, no devil on my plate, happy Friday everyone!

 

Nov 2, 2014 - General    No Comments

Bullet Proof Coffee

I love coffee, there, I’ve said it, everyone knows it, and all should know how unhappy I was during the thirty day cleanse. No dairy, no cream in my coffee, when I was able to add it back in, it made me sick. I was betrayed by the very thing I loved, what to do now was the big question.

The coconut creamer and the almond creamer just didn’t do it for me, then someone posted on Facebook about the bulletproof coffee. What is this I asked, I must know, well it is Kerrygold butter and something called MCT oil, however I don’t know what that is so left it out. I put the butter and the coffee in my bullet to blend it, the recipe said a blender, I am not getting that thing out when I have this on the counter. It was so amazingly good! The next go around I added honey and cinnamon, I will never look back, the best coffee I have ever had.

I highly recommend it, if you are a coffee lover and like the taste of the coffee without the flavored creamers, you will be a fan instantly.

Halloween was awesome, Tess went as Cleopatra and she was adorable, after she went out to get her candy she handed out mine. It was an easy family dinner, pizza, which I did not have, Gladys’ stories of her experience with pizza has me scared to try it.

Yesterday was glorious, I woke up to have my awesome coffee, got caught up on my DVR’d things and then Costco and grocery store. Last night of course was spent with Dr Who, an episode that left me breathless! I will not go on, in case anyone has not seen it, I don’t want to give anything away. Just know that it was a spectacular episode, can hardly wait for the season ender next week.

Today will be spent with Tess, shopping for her fall wardrobe, very excited about that! Love that little girl and getting to spend time with her, she is nothing short of amazing.

I hope everyone has a great week; I am still working out at Fitness Together and staying off of almost all dairy, exception being the Kerrygold in my coffee. Staying off of grains and sugars as well. I weigh in next week and will be measured again; I know it won’t be as dramatic as the first month, however I am sure it is a loss!

Oct 25, 2014 - General    No Comments

A Few Things

So, a couple of things this week are on my mind, first up is a tech support kind of issue. I know a lot of people are not as technically minded as I am, and mine is really a learned behavior, learned knowledge based on wanting a paycheck. As I have said before I am more nerdy than geeky, however I have a few tips for those who are less technically minded than those in tech support.

Number 1, when you call in and tell your tech support person that you cannot connect to the internet and they ask you what lights are light on the modem and what color are they, do not answer the top three. These lights are labeled, we understand if you might need to turn on a light and get a closer look. The lettering is small, however it is there, in the major telecommunications corporation I work for, we have no less than 7 modems floating around out there. The fronts are all different, please get your glasses, turn on a light and look the next time you are asked. This will save you and me some frustrated minutes; with me telling you I NEED you to read which ones are lit. Oh and please don’t forget the color of the lights, red or green, or blank. Remember red is bad, green is good.

B) If all devices in your home (i.e. laptop, tablet, smart phone) can connect to the internet except for one, the issue is on your side, not ours. You can do several things to see what is going on with the device, power cycling it is always a good start. Simply turn the thing off, wait ten seconds then turn it back on, if it does not connect and is not giving you an error, please contact the manufacturer of the device.

III) Take some time and learn about the devices in your home that connect to the Internet. Be it computers, tablets or even smart televisions, these are the things you own and it would behoove you to learn about them.

Next up is more of a personal note; I am having a hard time finding clothes that are appropriate for my age. I do not feel old, so I don’t want to dress old, however, I do know my limitations and do not want to dress too young either. This is a dilemma, what happens when you are in between ages? Not ready for housecoats, but too old for low rise jeans and belly shirts. I never wore those, but still, you get the point. I don’t really like stores like Chico’s and Coldwater Creek, to me those clothes are for older, however I am older. It’s a dilemma I tell ya; I don’t want to wear orthopedic shoes and polyester pants. I’m not ready to be old, dress old, walk old, ok I talk old, the whole in my day does come out of my mouth. But the other stuff I don’t want, ever, but I know it is an eventuality.

Oct 19, 2014 - General    No Comments

Sandi

I hate October, there, I’ve said it, October is not a great month, tomorrow marks 4 years without my friend Sandi.
I know I have talked about her before, but this year seems more poignant, with so many things happening that I want to tell her about. I still have her number in my phone, with her picture.
Yesterday, the Ladies that Lunch gathered, we told stories of Sandi and laughed, such a bitter sweet time. Everyone at the table was brought together by Sandi; she brought all of us there. I wonder if she knew, if she had an inkling of how much we would need each other after she had gone home.
Her beautiful mother was with us as well, even before Sandi left us, she was our surrogate mother. She is simply amazing and it is easy to see where Sandi got her awesomeness from, the apple really doesn’t fall far from the tree.
I still remember the last time I got to spend quality time with Sandi, it was at the Mary Kay Seminar in 2010, right before she passed away, I could tell that she was really sick even then. She tried to hide it, but her slight frame was even slighter, she seemed so frail, yet so strong. And there she was, standing straight and proud, she crossed the stage as the winner we all knew her to be.
A month and a half later she would be gone, we would all be left here, to miss her, to grieve and to carry on. Carry on we have, Wanda has become our new leader, we meet once a month, keeping the bond that Sandi created within us.
I will not leave you with sadness; I will leave you with a picture of her and myself, I love this picture of us.PICT0020 (2)
I miss you so much my friend, you were my mentor, my friend and my sister, all wrapped up in one little dynamo of a package.

Oct 15, 2014 - General    No Comments

What 30 Days Can Do

My first 30 days with Fitness Together is up, today as a matter of fact, and the question that comes to mind is: was it worth it?
It was, it was worth giving up processed sugar, grains and dairy for 30 days, I do miss real cream in my coffee, which I will be adding back in, not going to lie. But I don’t miss cheese as much as I thought I would, even though my diet was heavily dependent on dairy, it was not missed. I really didn’t miss bread or pasta because I really didn’t eat it that much before. I missed cereal, but that was out on two counts, sugar and grains, oh wait, three, milk.
At the end of thirty days I can do 10 pushups at a time, I can run around the building that houses Fitness Together with only having to stop once, when I first started I had to stop 4 to 5 times and it was a struggle to get around the building. I still don’t look good doing a burpee, I struggle with it, it’s not pretty, but I get it done, and they have this one exercise done with sliders called a mountain climber that I cannot do to save my life. I do a modified version, but I am working on doing the real thing.
I am finding good, fresh food to eat, I still crave sugar, especially when I go down the baking aisle in the store, I can smell the sugar. It’s literally torturous for me, however, I still crave diet coke and I have not had that in a year and a half, the addictions stay, the behavior changes.
I have lost 12 pounds so far and 10 inches, I am feeling better in my own skin, I don’t enjoy being overweight and out of shape. I don’t believe God wants us to live our lives like that, as it makes us sluggish both in body and in mind. We can’t fully achieve what He wants for us in that state; we have to be at our best. It is not easy; I will be the first to tell you, I have struggled through every one of these workout sessions. I have to stop halfway sometimes for a few seconds and gather myself and carry on. I am not the strongest in the classes, I am not the fastest, but I am getting there.
This place, Fitness Together, they don’t make you feel like a failure if you have to modify things at first to get through a workout. They do encourage you to power through and make it to the end; Gladys asked me if I had a favorite trainer. Well, I do, but I am not going to say who, they are all good, some are just stricter, which I need. Because trust me I can slack, which I do not want to do this time around.

Oct 11, 2014 - General    No Comments

Controversial Thoughts

My journey continues, I am down 12 pounds and almost 10 inches in three weeks, that is exciting to me!
I have so much to talk about and some things I have been forbidden to say online, so I shan’t, I shall move on to things I can discuss.
I think I have started a firestorm on Facebook, Adrian Peterson, we have all seen the photos and heard the story of how he took a switch to a four-year old. Everyone who is from the South has had this done to them, it is a fact, the media keeps saying it was a tree branch, it was not, it was a switch, repeat, not a tree branch. Let’s get that fact straight, I am not going to defend the actions, taking a switch to a 4-year-old and whaling on him or her is not the correct way to parent. However, let’s look at a few things, we do not know how long the 4-year-old had been misbehaving, and we don’t know how many times Adrian Peterson “got onto him” (another Southern thing), we don’t know what caused him to snap.
As a parent I can understand the final snap, it is the reaction to the snap that is important, his reaction was to do to his child what was done to him. Not that this is the correct reaction, however, if we have never been taught a different way, we do what we are taught.
Yes, he went overboard on that 4-year-old, but I do not believe he deserves felony charges, I believe he needs parenting classes, some supervised visitation until he completes the classes, then check ups to make sure the lessons were learned.
There is a woman in Pennsylvania that made her daughter eat cat liter and she is being charged with simple assault, I’m sorry, cat liter is way more extreme than a switch (once again, not a tree branch). This woman deserves felony charges, not simple assault charges, if Adrian Peterson were not famous, were not a football player, this would not be a felony.
I’m going to tell you this, my grandmother made her grandchildren go get their own switches, we kids thought the thinner ones would be the best ones. Don’t be fooled, those things stung worse than the bigger ones, I am not advocating what he did by this statement. I am simply letting you know I understand his upbringing, he was doing what he was taught.
Once again, not an excuse, but this is a man who was immersed in a sport that takes all of his concentration, he really didn’t know any better. Instead of prison time, why not get him some much-needed parenting classes, have him do some community service with abused children. He doesn’t deserve prison time for this, I have spoken to someone who went to school with him at OU, he says that Adrian Peterson is a really nice guy. A little dense, but truly nice, get this man some parenting classes, open his eyes to a better way of disciplining, allow him to rehabilitate without costing the taxpayers money.
The woman who made her child eat cat liter, I’ll gladly pay her prison stay.

Sep 28, 2014 - General    No Comments

Alert and Ready to Go

Here it is, two weeks down since I began with Fitness Together, since I cut out sugar, dairy and grains, two weeks in to a better me.
I feel better even after two weeks, I feel more awake, I walk into work at 6:00 AM ready to start the day, annoyingly awake and happy. I feel stronger already and I am down 7 pounds. I don’t know how many inches; we are going to do full measurements, weight and fat measurements at the one-month mark.
I have never looked forward to being measured in my entire life! How crazy is that?! I will tell you this, Friday I wore jeans that I could not even get into two weeks ago, that is my litmus, how my clothes fit.
I am eating better, no more junk food, sodas I gave up a long time ago, well over a year, no more Cheetos. I miss those, dark chocolate I can have, which is why I think I am sticking to this eating plan, if I can have chocolate once in a while I am good to go.
The new season has begun on television, and on the majority of my shows, it is a total wow factor, can hardly wait for Castle tomorrow night. I need to see how they are going to get out of this one, how will Rick have lived through the fireball that his car became.
Bones just about broke my heart; I will not go into details in case some people are catching up on their DVR viewing. S.H.I.E.L.D. did not disappoint, Joss was on point as usual, no surprise there. I have too many shows to name, so I will stop there, television is my hobby, that and reading, I could be happy living in a cave as long as I had television and books. Oh and the Internet, must have Internet.
There is so much going on in the world today, and rarely is it good, I am saddened by the reports of child slavery, of killings and the talk of war. If things keep going the way they are, I have to ask is WWIII inevitable? Will the U.S.A. be victorious as they were in the past? It seems everyone in power is really looking out for themselves, not the people they were sworn in to protect. This is a sad state of affairs indeed; hopefully we can all work together to change this woeful happening.
We should all be concerned with others before ourselves, always reaching out, even if it is with a kind word or smile. You never know what that will mean to the person you smile at, even a stranger. You could be the only human contact they have that day, so smile; it costs you nothing and could mean the world.
I know that is a simplistic way to look at things, I’m not stupid, I do not think a smile will save the world or stop a war. However, it starts with us, kindness and happiness is infectious, and for Christians you cannot share Christ with someone if you have been mean and nasty to them. Jesus fed the body then the mind, take care of physical needs and spiritual will follow.
Must go for now, have television to watch, checking out How to get away with Murder on demand, seeing if it deserves a spot on my DVR.

Sep 21, 2014 - General    No Comments

Cloud Coverage

One week down with no sugar, no dairy and no grains, so far so good, oh side note, coconut milk is gross. I do find it challenging finding enough to eat, to get in the calories that they want me to have. 1200 to 1500 a day. Dairy used to be a staple, cottage cheese, yogurt and well, cheese, not to mention whipping cream in my coffee. I really miss that, tried coconut milk in my coffee, literally thought I was going to die. I finally found some non-dairy, sugar-free creamer and it is ok, not fantastic, but better than the coconut milk.
I am muddling through the working out, I feel clumsy and clunky, but I am doing them! I am already starting to feel better, I know what sugar does to me, I always feel better when I eliminate processed sugar, no bloating, no tired feeling at the end of the day. It’s crazy how things that we have eaten all of our lived really effect our bodies. We don’t even realize it until we give it up.
Today I will be trying spaghetti squash; with organic, sugar free pasta sauce, this will be interesting. If it works out, then I will take leftovers for lunch tomorrow, I am getting tired of protein smoothies. I hate protein powder, no matter what else I put in it, banana, peanut butter or almond milk, nothing masks the taste.
A few weeks back when I picked up Tess from school, there were all these big, fluffy white clouds in the sky. I asked Tessa if she had noticed them and weren’t they pretty. The following is our conversation:

Me: Tess, did you see all of the pretty clouds?
Tessa: yes I did, God must be doing a lot of flying today.
Me: What?
Tessa: Gigi, you know that when God flies over us to check up on us He uses clouds to cover up.
Me: I forgot.

At that moment I look out of my window and I see a cloud in the perfect form of an Angel, I thought to myself, she’s right. God was doing a lot of flying that day; I will never look at clouds the same way again.
Children are amazing, they see things we have forgotten about as adults, things we take for granted are truly miracles in this world. Even something as simple as a big, fluffy white cloud.
I shall report back on the fitness journey, if you are thinking of making a change, Fitness Together is the place to do it. If you are like me and have yo-yoed your way through life then call them. I think they still have the Groupon; you can give them a try for a few weeks and see how you like it. After one week I am seeing a huge difference. Even people around me are remarking on it, my son and a couple of coworkers have said they can already see a difference.

Sep 13, 2014 - General    No Comments

My Journey Begins

Well, here I sit, doing it once again, going all in on a weight loss episode, only this time feels different. I have joined a place, Fitness Together, that works on the whole thing, physical activity as well as nutrition, I have been asked to give up diary, grains and sugar for a month. I am going to do it, I know when I give up sugar I feel better, I am less bloated, I feel less tired and am clearer headed. So for a month I shall give up these things and begin a work out regimen four times a week to begin with.
At the end of the month we shall see how I feel giving up those things, they said at that time we will add things back in. this way we can see if I have a food sensitivity, which makes sense.
I am going to miss cheese and milk the most, I give up sugar all the time, so that won’t kill me, plus I can still have honey in my coffee so I’m good there.
So, this weekend, before I start on Monday, I am eating popcorn, cheese and cereal, maybe some ice cream in there somewhere. I need to say goodbye properly to things I love, and I do so love cheese and popcorn.
Going over what I currently eat, I was told I am not eating enough, and really not enough of the good things. I would tend to agree with this, so I am going to be going on 1500 calories a day, which will be a challenge to get in for me.
I used to have energy, I could come home, do laundry, clean up a bit and stay up later, now I find I come home and just want to sit down. And I sit all day! There is no excuse for this. Fitness Together is owned by a husband and wife, Ray and Amy, Amy asked me if I was tired after eating a baked potato, because carbs tend to cause your body to wind down so it can digest them. I didn’t know how to answer because I am literally tired all of the time. I go to work and I come home, I rarely leave my home on the weekends, I just want to sleep, if I am not sleeping I am sitting.
Not a good way to live, there are times I don’t even feel like shopping, yes, I said shopping, and I love shopping. A lot.
After watching my friend Gladys, go through this amazing transformation over the past year, I decided to give her place a try. She, along with BBFF another friend, Vicki, have inspired me to take my life back, my health and my fitness. I am incredibly tired of being, well tired; it is time to wake up. The older I get the harder it will become; it will be a challenge as it is at my age.
50 is old to begin this intensive of a workout, however I am determined, I shall do it, and I shall do it for good this time. I need to live a really long time; I have so much to live for, my children, Tessa, friends who need me to give them advice well into my dotage. Ok the last part was made up, but it does make me smile to say it.
I, of course, shall take you all along with me while I suffer through the withdrawals and the pain of getting my muscles back. I come from incredibly strong people, physically as well as mentally; I have no doubt I will be channeling them and persevering.

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