Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Quick update

Two weeks into my diet and I've lost 7 pounds.
Three weeks into my math class and I've aced all the quizzes and I'm now fairly confident that I could pass a middle school math class. Seventh grade, at least!
Almost four weeks into January and I'm actually not curled up in a corner waiting for the sun to come out.

So far I'm kicking 2016's butt. Go Wendy. :)

Thursday, January 21, 2016

The accidental pants

This is the story of how I accidentally bought pants and went on a walk, lol.

I went to Target last night. On my fitness kick I'm trying to get more steps in so Shawn and I went to Target and wandered around for a bit. While we were shopping I stopped to buy some yoga capris because I like to wear them around the house during the day. They're comfortable and I feel like I'm in my jammies, but I look like there is a possibility that I was exercising if someone comes to the door, lol.

So at Target I grabbed what I thought were black yoga Capri pants, but somehow I don't know if grabbed the wrong ones, or what, but that's not what I came home with. When I got home and pulled them out of the bag I realized that what I really bought was stretchy black legging running pants. Like  yoga pants, but sleek looking leggings with little reflective patches on the side so people can see you if you're jogging at night. They have zippers on the ankle and a zippered pocket in the back to hold your keys while you run. They look like serious exercise pants for people who do serious exercise.  I don't own pants like that. I don't really need pants like that. I walk on my dumb treadmill in my basement in my yoga capris that are only one step up from exercising in my pajamas.

But I put the new pants on to see what they felt like and suddenly I felt...exercise-y. Like I put the pants on and suddenly I looked like someone who might go running. I'm not gonna, but I looked like I might, lol.

This morning I had to walk Clarissa to the bus stop. I decided to put on my new exercise-y pants. And because I forgot to leave my fancy walking shoes in the basement by the treadmill the other day, they were in my bedroom and I put those on too. I looked like I was ready for some exercise.

So I walked Clarissa to the bus stop and got her off to school and I walked back home and as I was walking and feeling all exercise-y in my new exercise-y pants and my walking shoes, I figured, what the heck, maybe I should take a walk around the neighborhood. So I grabbed my phone, found a podcast that looked interesting, stuck in my headphones and went for a walk. I walked for a half hour, listening to the podcast, enjoying the neighborhood, getting some fresh air and it was a million times better than my crappy treadmill in the basement.

I came home feeling awesome! It turns out that some fresh air and a long walk was just what I needed.

So I'm keeping the accidental pants and I think I'm going to start going for a nice walk in the mornings instead of fighting the treadmill. Me and my accidental pants are going on an adventure together. :)

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Out of shape

I'm making big life changes right now. Losing weight, getting in shape and learning math is kind of kicking my butt right now.

Yesterday I spent the entire day learning math. I sat down at 9am to do my assignment and take a quiz and at 3 in the afternoon I was still at it. My kids were off school yesterday, so at one point I had Matthew in here tutoring me. He's 12.  You guys. I make it sound like I'm learning string theory over here for how hard I'm struggling with this, but it's literally middle school math. Yesterday Matthew tutored me on decimals, fractions, percentages and negative numbers. He's in 7th grade and he's super good at this stuff. But I was bad at it in 7th grade and I have avoided doing math of any sort for pretty much my entire adult life, so my brain is out of shape when it comes to numbers. It took me all afternoon yesterday to grasp converting a fraction into a decimal. I'm embarrassed to admit how much I struggle with even simple math.

I did eventually get it and I got a 100% on my weekly quiz, but it was not without struggle. I was mentally exhausted by the end of the day. I feel like I'm revisiting a lot of long repressed issues with math. I really stuggled with math as a kid. I never took a single math class growing up that wasn't extremely hard for me. And I had kind of forgotten what a struggle that was for me because it was so long ago, but being back in a math class is kind of bringing it all back. My brain just does not process numbers. I don't get math. I'm determined to do whatever I have to do to get through this class, but I'm hoping and praying that this is the last math class I have to take, because it's ridiculous how much of a struggle it is for me. I feel like a fairly intelligent person most of the time, but taking this math class is certainly knocking me down a few pegs, lol.

I'll get there. My family is supportive and I'm determined to learn, so one way or another I'll get though it. The best part of this is watching me kids be my cheerleader for the first time. I'm kind of a strict parent when it comes to school and we have high expectations of our kids. They're expected to work hard and I'm always there giving them pep talks and cheering them on. It was kind of funny yesterday when I was struggling and Josh sat down with me and talked me though it, exactly the same way that I have with him so many times. He reminded me that it's OK not to be perfect but that it's important to try your best. How many times have I said that to my kids? About a million. I kind of loved that he was putting it back on me. Knowing that it was time to practice what I preach helped me to keep going when I wanted to just drop the whole thing in the nearest trash can. It is OK not to be perfect, but I'm going to try my best.

So while I'm working out my out of shape brain, I'm also working on my body. We're about a week into the diet and things are going good. I've already lost five pounds and I'm back on the treadmill. I hate the treadmill. I would rather do just about anything (well, besides math) than get on that stupid thing. But I also want to be strong and healthy and right now that's what I have to do. Once it gets warmer I hope to get back out on my bike, but for now the treadmill is the best option. I always have to remind myself that I hate it when I'm doing it but I feel SO great when I'm done. I feel strong and accomplished and happy, and I like feeling that way. The fact that it's the middle of January when I would normally be curled up with a book waiting for the sun to come back out and instead I'm exercising and fighting my way through a math class makes me feel proud and accomplished. None of this is easy for me. Frankly, it's kind of embarassing how hard it is. But I'm doing it and I feel good. I mean, I hate it most of the time, but I feel accomplished. I feel strong and brave and capable, even though basically all I've managed to accomplish is pass a quiz on fractions and lose five pounds, lol. But those things are hard for me and I'm pushing through it. And I'm proud of me.

Thursday, January 14, 2016

Here we go again.

So, I'm on a health kick. Go ahead, I'll wait while you laugh. :)

Shawn's work is taking part in a city wide weight loss challenge that is sponsored by a hospital here. They put a team together and Shawn texted me from work a few weeks ago and asked if I wanted to be on their team. Do I WANT to? No, not particularly. Do I NEED to. Yes. So I'm doing it.

So basically people form teams and they go get officially weighed in at one of the participating businesses around town and then for the next five months we diet and exercises and we have to go weigh in again once a month and the team that loses the most weight by the first part of June wins money. And in the meantime they're offering free weeks at different gyms, free fitness classes, free nutrition classes and a bunch of other fun little incentives to keep the progress moving.

So we went last night and did our first weigh in. Ugh. That's all I have to say about that. Remember when I started riding my bike and running and I lost all that weight and I was so happy and then I crashed and burned? I'm still mad at myself for giving that up, and I dread starting over. I've tried to start over a few times and I just couldn't make a it stick.

But life has given me another opportunity to start over, so here I am. Will I be successful? I have no idea. I'm not even going to pretend that I'm super gung ho and ready to tackle this, but I am willing to give it a try. Just like going back to school, I'm going to take it one day at a time and do my best.

But one thing that is giving me motivation is a trip Shawn and I may be taking in June. Josh has his two big trips coming up. He's doing an American history tour of the East Coast at the beginning of June, and that trip ends in Washington DC and his France trip starts in DC four days later. So Shawn and I have been kicking around the idea of flying to DC to spend those four days with him and then getting him off on his France trip and then going to NYC for a few days. Shawn has never been do New York City and would love to see it and I have talked to my mentor (who lives in NYC) about the possibility of us meeting up for dinner while we're there, which I'm really excited about!

So we're tentitively planning a trip for June, which is right when this fitness challenge ends. It would kind of be a fun incentive for us to work really hard on diet and exercise for the next five months and then reward ourselves with a fun vacation. I'm still trying to decide if I can justify the expense when we have college tuition to pay for and some other things coming up this year, but I think it would be a fun adventure for us so I'm trying to budget and figure out the logistics and see if I can make it work. We would fly into DC, spend four days there with Josh, get him dropped off with his France group, take the train or the bus to NYC, spend a few days there and then fly home from there. I've been pricing flights and hotels and trying to figure it all out. I'm pretty sure it's going to happen, but I'm still researching it. It would be a fun weight loss incentive, and it would also be right before our 19th wedding anniversary, so it would be a fun little anniversary trip.

So that's what I'm working on right now. This is a terrible time for me to start my fitness goals, because it's January, and if you have followed my blog you know how much I hate January! We've reached the really bleak part of winter. It's cold, it's dark and it's grey. Trying to motivate myself to jump on the treadmill and eat right when I really just want to stay in bed and eat comfort food is a struggle for me. This would be easier if I was starting in the spring when the sun comes out and I'm a little more lively, but I'm going to give this a try. It helps that Shawn and I are doing it together. I texted him from the treadmill this morning and he cheered me on. Today has been a good diet and exercise day. I will strive for the same tomorrow.

So right now I'm taking a math class, I'm on a diet, I'm back on the treadmill and it's January. It's like the perfect storm of suckage, lol. That's pretty much a list of all the things I hate, all at once. But I'm hanging in there! I'm taking life one day at a time and I'll do my best. If I stick with it, things will be looking pretty good in a few months. I'll get there.

Tuesday, January 12, 2016

I would like to make an announcement...

...I just got 100% on my first math quiz. Go ahead, I'll wait while you all cheer for me. Lol

So I'm taking math this semester. I. Hate. Math. Hate it. I've hated it since I was a kid. I'm a reasonably intelligent person in every other area, but my brain just does not process numbers. I've struggled with every math class I've ever taken, and one of my biggest fears about going back to college was having to take math. I avoid math like the plague. I break out in a cold sweat if I have to figure out a tip at my hairdresser without a calculator. My brain doesn't like numbers. Like, literally I'm more terrified of taking this beginning math class than I am of writing a masters thesis. I will happily go to grad school, just don't make me take algebra.

This math class I'm taking is a reintroduction to math. Probably the easiest college math class you will ever find anywhere. Literally, our first assignment of the semester was a refresher on times tables. By the end of the semester we'll be doing algebra, but we're working up to that. So...yeah. It's not like I signed myself up for calculus.

But still, I have been dreading this math class. I wake up every morning this semester and my first through is "Crap. I have to do math today." From now until April I'm just going to be one big ball of math anxiety.

But I'm brave and I can do this, so I have enlisted my kids to tutor me, because fortunately they inherited Shawn's math brain and they actually love math. The whole family is all about helping mom pass a math class right now.

This morning I had to take a quiz. And you would laugh if you saw this quiz because it was ridiculously easy. But it's still numbers and numbers are not easy for me. Even easy math isn't easy for me. So I watched the video of the instructor explain it and I did the practice questions and I worked really hard on it all morning. And I took the quiz....and I got 100%! And I'm not going to lie, I cried. I mathed! All by myself! I'm not sure if I've ever gotten 100% on any math quiz ever in my life.

I texted Shawn at work to announce that I passed a math quiz. I'm making a blog post about how I passed a math quiz. Is it a thing to send out a press release about how I passed a math quiz?!

I passed a math quiz. I ACED a math quiz. Sure, it was barely middle school math and I should probably be embarrassed to even admit that I'm this proud of acing a quiz that any 12 year old in America could probably do in their sleep, but math is hard for me and I have spent my whole life convinced that I can't do it. And for this one week, this one day, I did it. And next week I'm going to work hard again and maybe I'll ace another one. I might actually make it through a math class without a nervous breakdown, lol.

I aced a math quiz. Go Wendy. :)