Friday, May 29, 2015

That's What I Get...

  I'm struggling right now.., I just got a "new" laptop at work, and I'm not loving it. It's basically a Tablet with a keyboard attached. Everything is so small. I can't... So this blog is shorter than usual. In the future, I'll plan better and save things through out the week... So here's what's going on...

Favorite Show:  The Bachelorette


    Seriously, can they get any more cracked out than this season of The Bachelorette? There is just so much "Kooky" going on right now!  For one, the season premiere started with two women competing over who was even going to get the chance to BE the Bachelorette, then the competition begun.  Kaitlyn (Right) was chosen over Brit, thank God (Left).  This season is shown to have so many twists and turns... one even including an alleged homosexual interest among the men (have you seen the articles re: JJ & Clint???) Then, this Bachelorette may be the first to actually admit to having sex on the show (well, off camera, while the show is in season).  I hope that the men treat her fairly, and if not, I hope she's willing to stand up for herself.   She is definitely not the first to do it, but she may be the first not to hide behind some kind of coy illusion of what may or may not have happened.  Stay tuned, this season is proving to have way more twists and turns than any other season.., Of course, this is The Bachelor/ette, and they're always ready to bamboozle us!


Favorite Song:  Falling in Love at a Coffee Shop by Landon Pigg


  I've heard this song before, but this was the first time I've ever heard the original, and I really liked it. I just think Landon Pigg h as such an unfortunate name, though...


Favorite Gripe:  I'd Rather be Fat...

 
  I would like to say that working out this week has been great. I would like to say that I went to the gym everyday, with determination, motivation, and excitement.  I cannot. I can say that I went to the gym everyday, but there were so many moments when I swear, I just rather be fat, lol.  I wish that switch would go off in my head... the switch that is moved by determination and drive... the switch that is motivated by trying to "achieve" this goal.  That's one of the major flaws in my life, I feel.  I'm not really a "goal setter".  This doesn't mean that I don't have goals, but it's just that usually they take no time to complete.  Most of the things I want, I make happen almost instantly.... so the fact that weight loss takes FOREVER is a bit of a foreign concept for me.  I wish I were motivated by the same things that motivate other people.  I am not.  Competition, comparing myself to others, what other people "think" is not much motivation for me.  So this week has sucked majorly.  But I'm proud of myself for pushing through and sucking it up and going to work out, anyway.  I know that "I'd rather be fat" is a lie that my inner voice is telling myself.  Hopefully I see more loss on this weekend's weigh in. That's the only motivator. It sucks to stay the same after working so hard. That is not motivating in itself. I did get my punishment for procrastinating so late, however... I was going to meet my family for "Family Night" and didn't want to be too late. Because I drug my feet, I had to work out at the Apartment Clubhouse... which is super tiny. It's about the size of a standard office (for 1 person) and they've crammed a tread mill, two ellipticals, a weight bench & a weight rack... , not only is that claustrophobic enough, add 5 men who all decided it was a good time to work out together...  hot bodies (and not in the visually appealing kind of way,,,) all huffing and puffing and blowing the gym down. It was so hard to breathe in there! It had me wishing I was actually at the gym, with open spaces, and fresher air. That's what I get though...,

That's it for this week... If I procrastinate any longer, I'll have to work out with the smelly sweaty men.  That's not a good day in the neighborhood! 

XO,
   Tiffani













Friday, May 15, 2015

Changes...

  I promise... this post isn't all gripes... but it's just some of the things that have been happening, this week.  Aaa... I'm so glad it's the weekend!

Favorite Site:  Sparkpeople.com

        Ok, I promise- I'm not going to become one of those annoying people where all they do is talk about going to the gym.  I'm not going to Oprah out on you, here-- but I did want to pass some information along. In the past (before being depressed for 4yrs) I used Sparkpeople.com to help  with my weight loss needs. I absolutely had a lot of fun losing weight on this site. I recently got back into it, and it's the best site around.  The BEST thing about it, is that it's absolutely FREE!! It has goals, rewards, social media, all kinds of trackers & progress report spreadsheets, recipes, meal plans helpful tips, videos, community support, articles, exercise videos, other videos, Spark Coaches, games,  prizes, blogs and EVEN actual estimated dates where you should be around your goal weight, according to any progress or pitfalls you may have... Like, In July 2015, you could go from this weight to another It's AWESOME! Everything in the world you could possibly need to lose weight the healthy way is on this site.  It may take awhile to get adjusted to all of the features of the site- but the reason it has so many, is so you can pick and choose what works for you. Losing weight is different for everyone. If you didn't read, my blog from last week (Attack of the Body Shamers) talked about just a small percentage (in my opinion) of people who are all headed for the same goal- but have different ways of doing it. This is an AWESOME site.  Check it out! 

Favorite Pain in the Butt:  Chub Rub 

   So one of the crappy things about starting a work out routine, regularly, again, is the reoccurring chub rub.  The lady above has probably never experienced this, but being a lady who's always had thick thighs, this is a common problem. After a few weeks, it goes away & you can resume running problem-free... but for the first couple of weeks, you start doing the cowboy stroll, as you try to press on towards your goals.  Right now, A&D Ointment is my friend. I just discovered that this is a new "invention" to help combat this problem (below). I called it the "Chubberband" but this company decided that Bandelettes was a much more feminine name. I wonder if they work...   This is actually a little low, for where I need them, but you know... it's a cute idea, lol.


Favorite Thing that Pissed me Off:  Fox CANCELLED Mindy!!


    They did it to me again!! One of THE BEST shows on Tv got cancelled. I absolutely love this show, and have no idea how they came to this decision. Apparently, Hulu has picked it up-- but it sucks, because I'm a girl who likes to watch television shows on her TELEVISION!! I don't get how a comedy show gets 3 (I think) awards, and still gets cancelled. It's not even in the same genre as something like Scandal or The Walking Dead. Not only did they quit one of my favorite shows, they cancelled it right after finding out that Mindy is Pregnant. This is not the first time they've messed with my Mindy. I hate it.  The season before last, they teased us. After waiting months for a new season, we were blessed with 3 episodes... 3 EPISODES! Now this??? It was just a funny show. So bummed about this cancellation.

Favorite Gripe:  Smartphones are Ruining Our Lives...

      I have a LOVE/HATE relationship with technology.  I found an article that spoke volumes to me you can check it out (here).  Don't get me wrong, I love the convenience & entertainment of technology... but what I'm NOT loving is how obsessed people are with it, now. I draw the line when it comes to when I'm actually spending time with people.  Some folks are so rude. I don't even think they realize how rude it is-- but one of my biggest pet peeves is when you're having a conversation with someone, and they just start scrolling their phone... If they're looking for something for you or in relationship to what you're talking about, that's totally different... but you wouldn't believe how many times people just start browsing their facebook or texting someone. It's serious FOMO (Fear of Missing Out). You can just look around in a crowded places... places where people used to talk to each other and get to know people. Men used to notice women... women used to notice men... People had higher self esteems & actually enjoyed spending times with friends and family, because every event they did didn't have to be broadcast-ed for social media.  Social media definitely has it's place- but it just makes me so sad and sick how it seems to be replacing relationships with actual people...who are standing in front of you...like right now... Take control of your devices, people- don't let your devices control you.  I just had to get a new phone, because my phone carrier made a mandatory upgrade, and the first thing I did was to go through and minimize all the ways I'm "connected" to others. Seriously- no one needs THAT much access to you...  So sad. Look at these pictures, and tell me what you think.  You tell me if we have a problem...

Favorite Song:  18 Wheeler by P!nk (Missundaztood
   
     I love this song! It's motivation for so many of the things I need to do!  Mainly to get my butt moving... This is a great CD, by the way. Another one of my favorites is Misery feat. Stephen Tyler.  I just know it was an honor for her to work with him- and likewise, he probably loved working with her.



Well, I have to get going.  I have things to do... places to run (in place, ha ha), and to just generally get the heck out of dodge! lol 

Comment, Subscribe, all that jazz! It's free! 

XO,
   Tiffani











Friday, May 8, 2015

Attack of the Body Shamers

     I'm so excited to share this blog entry with you! It's only going to have two topics because I got a little carried away on my Body Shamers segment.  I hope you feel enlightened, and do your best to be the best you! 

Favorite Tv Show:  Little People NY



     Please pay attention to this cab... it will be pretty useful.  I didn't think I'd really get into this show, but it's really interesting! I love to see into the lives and lifestyles of others, and this is one life I know very little about. I know people make jokes, because I'm only 5ft2, but Little People really have great stories to tell! 

   Last night's episode featured a little spitfire named Jordanna (3rd from the left), a frenemy named Misty (4th from the left) and a Drama Queen named Jason (not-pictured).  I was appalled at the behavior Jason exhibited last night. Jordanna offended him by telling him not to be a coward & embarrassing him in front of the group, when he mentioned he had changed his mind about moving out of his parents'.  I don't think that was her intention, but he was embarrassed, nonetheless. He had gathered Jordanna & Kristin (First from the right) together to sort of "soften the blow" when he was going to tell his parents he was moving out. Dude is 27yrs old, but due to his Filipino customs, 'children' don't move out until they're married. 

[Sidenote:]  I think the real issue,here, is that he's not ready to "come out" as gay. Even his close friends "aren't sure" what his sexual preference is [Really, Jason???] -- although I'm pretty sure they all assume he's gay.  If he won't come out, fine, I'll say it for him... Jason...honey... You're gay. So, you see why this "getting married (traditionally, I assume) would be a dilemma for him?  Even if he wasn't gay (which more than likely, he is) getting to know someone & having privacy as adults would be tough.  However, this is New York, and it's a lot more acceptable to live with your family or have roomates because of high rent.... Which brings us back to the gay thing... anyway- back to my story.

      Jason felt embarrassed that Jordanna told him not to be a coward and renege on moving out, after she & Kristin had to sit through this big emotional ordeal at his parents' house, regarding his moving out (but not coming out, lol).  Jordanna grew up with several (straight) brothers, so clearly this might have been the language she spoke to them, but it was obviously the wrong dialogue to have with Jason.  

       So, instead of confronting Jordanna about her words he tried to build an army against her.  At first, he tried Lila (second from Right) but Lila is a bit of a space cadet and really wasn't trying to take sides, when she had her own problems with Dawn (first on the left) and also with her sobriety.  Gathering no allies there, he decides to take another situation between Misty & Jordanna and feed off of Misty's jealousy.  So, he squanders every opportunity to talk to Jordanna like a man and instead, decides to gas Misty up, so that she's the one that goes off on Jordanna (because her own jealousy). 

    I despise people who cause problems because they can't face their own, which is exactly what Jason did. The entire episode he went around the group trying to gain co-signers against Jordanna, but because his petty little rift wasn't strong enough, compared to what they had going on, he took it upon himself to add fuel to an existing fire, rather to come out guns blazing on this own behalf.  Finally, though, Jason found his "Patsy" to forge the front lines and get the argument going. He started talking to her about all the opportunities she was going to lose out to Jordanna, and that this wouldn't be the last... and "Oh, she's also going to Paris! She stole your trip!" (Misty & Jordanna's dispute was over a Fashion Show) --  It was so clear to me what he was doing, and his actions screamed nothing but deplorable coward! Jealousy is an evil thing... 

Favorite Social Gripe:  Body Shaming



         I believe that body shaming has become such a terrible epidemic...however... it's not a new epidemic. Because of social media, it has become more hurtful & prevalent, but it is not new.  I'm sure some folks might be offended by things I'm going to talk about, but in 2015, who doesn't get offended? (That's another topic of discussion).  

       No- I don't approve or condone body shaming... however it irritates me so much when people all the sudden want to feel butt-hurt about it, now that some folks are actually saying [out loud *gasp!*] that they actually prefer curvy, thick or big people. Really? Oh, so you don't like it when people criticize your body or make assumptions about your lifestyle...oh....As if it hasn't happened daily for decades. I just think that they are just getting a tiny taste of what "curvy---thick--chubby--obese" people have gotten all their lives.. and you know what... Skinny people don't like it either!  I think, bottomline is body shaming sucks.  You see all the time when people ask this question:


"If it's not ok to Fat-shame, why is it ok to Skinny Shame???"

  The answer is, "Because people have not stopped fat shaming... " It's a "Chicken or the Egg" kind of thing we've got going on here. Both are wrong and both will continue as long as we're a self-absorbed society looking to gauge our personal self esteems based on how many people we think are beneath us. You'd think that the body shaming all together would decrease, as a result of folks finally getting a taste of their own medicine. But No. It just becomes an increasingly nasty debate (usually online) between folks who are considered overweight or waif-like & everyone else.  It's so petty, really.  And the realization I came to the other day, (while doing my second leg of my hour on the Elliptical...) is that, it's usually one main group of Gym Posers who actually are the main culprits in body shaming.  If they knew the real struggles about weight, maybe they wouldn't be so quick to judge or criticize.  I wrote about this in "Diary of a Phoenix" (My weight loss journal, that you'll never get your eyes one, lol) and I pegged it down to 4 types of folks:  



  The Gym Rat is the person who really gets how much hard work it is to stay fit or lose weight. These are the only people who actually LIKE to go to the gym, lol. People admire them. They probably were athletic in a past life. They know about Endorphins. They have had a Runner's High before.  These are folks who really have found their stride. They are inspirational, but don't look to them long term, especially if you haven't found your own stride, yet.  They're great motivators, but you really need to keep up with their routine, or get lost in the dust. They're not going to keep going back to pick you up, every time you feel like quitting. The determination is what you need to learn, from a gym rat.  Sometimes these folks fat shame- to feed their superiority complex, but most of them are too busy trying to stay fit than to fat-shame your journey. 




    Then, you have the Gym Hater (the group where I belong-- Wut up, GH! Represent, Represent!!!)... This group contains folks of all sizes who absolutely hate working out, or at best tolerate it, but would much rather be doing something else (or almost anything else)...however we go because it's a necessity. We are realists... we don't pretend that we love working out. We do it because we have to in order to obtain a certain goal.  We may have several "false starts",but we never actually give up. There are also a bunch of yo-yoers in this group, but the point is, we will always get up again when we fall down.  There might be a fat-shamer in the closet in this group, who hasn't come to terms with their own physicality... but in general, this group probably has the least amount of body shamers... unless it's skinny, then they might be skinny shamers out of pure jealousy... Like when, my co-worker eats nothing but fried foods, cheese, and junk, but still stays pretty svelte without working out.... *whoo whoo whoo* calm down, calm down...* Really, it's the hate of the gym talking, more than actual skinny-shaming, lol.





     The Gym Nemesis is the person who hasn't darkened the doorway of a gym (or worked out) in years...probably since they stopped requiring students to take "gym class".  These folks may or may not have been fat all their lives, but they've given up, somewhere. They may have obtained a husband, kids, money, friends, or even just decided to 'settle' for the way their lives are. They are living the dream and don't really care about losing weight because they feel they have it all, despite their size.  There are a lot of excuse makers in this group, as well. This group might have the most amount of actual Skinny-Shamers.  They might feel comfortable or content in their size, but still have a vendetta against  skinny or even 'Fit' people they feel need to be knocked down a peg or too... or tied to a stake in the grass, so they don't blow away... (ha ha-- Ok, fine... I'm not shaming, just joking).  




        The aforementioned "Gym Posers" are THE WORST, though... These folks are people who don't actually go to the gym, work out, or try to live a healthy life-- but feel they are justified in fat shaming people, or accuse others of skinny-shaming. These folks have hit the genetic lottery by never having to suffer through weight problems (either being too fat or too skinny). They are naturally thin or naturally "average".  They might go to the gym 2-4 times a month (not enough time for an actual effective plan for either weight loss or gain).  This person hides behind the fact that they don't really have to do the work, because they physically blend into society. They might even be more unhealthy than someone like, say, an overweight Gym Hater, who at least tries...These guys are the biggest hypocrites. They have no idea what it's like, yet feel they can judge and shame based on what they assume.

      I've never been "too skinny", but I can tell you that overweight folks usually have a story.  Their struggle is usually tied to some kind of emotional or mental block. For some, the extra weight becomes a barrier of some sort, between them and the world, especially if they've been sexually abused or molested in the past.  Especially if they've been verbally, emotionally, or physically abused... with any kind of abuse or trauma, in general.  The gym poser wants to point fingers at "fat people" and talk about all the 'cheeseburgers and fries they're eating and their lazyness that got them so fat', when a) they, themselves like to eat cheeseburgers and fries pretty frequently and do nothing besides happen to have a body that metabolizes it differently b) don't realize that type of behavior doesn't actually help. Gym Posers only look at the symptoms of a problem, not the actual problem. 

      I'm sure there are other Body Shamers from all categories... Gym Nemesis people who don't want to take responsibility for their physical state, or don't feel they should have to constantly defend it... or Gym Rat people who love working out who don't want to be criticized for their chosen lifestyle, because others are too lazy to keep up-- and are maybe just now realizing, "Hey, it does kind of suck to be told that you don't have the 'preferred' body type...

      Everyone wants to be accepted, period.  No one wants to be told that they aren't desirable (even if they aren't to you)  and have judgments made about their lives (that may or may not be true) when you don't personally know them or their struggle.  And out of anyone, the Gym Poser is the last person that has any right to speak on anything, because they haven't experienced the struggle and also haven't put in any work to maintain their figure. I'm so annoyed that people can't just be encouraging to others, in general. If a person could use meat on their bones, they probably try to compensate other ways... If they could lose weight, trust me, they probably beat themselves up about it more times a day than you might in a lifetime.  And in general... people just need to chill out. After all, you saying something nasty to someone about their weight or giving unsolicited advice might be thing that keeps them imprisoned for a long time.  


(Please Excuse Language)

      For me, it was extended relatives always talking about my weight, then when I finally did do something about it,  telling me [unsolicited] that I was "Slimming down, but not thin, yet"-- when I had worked really hard, at the time. I actually enjoyed working out, and really only had a few more pounds to go. But the problem was, I thought I looked great; I was working out all the time, and felt like I was really changing things. I actually did have the best figure I've ever had. Looking at the exact day, and knowing the  years since, that I've fought this battle, is staggering. 

     What he said may have been trivial, but at the time all I could hear was "you're not good enough, doesn't matter how hard or what kind of effort you've put in, you don't measure up to where I think you should be..."  I had lost 35-40lbs at the time, and it still "wasn't good enough"... I was in single digit clothes... "Still not good enough"... After that I developed a temporary eating disorder for a few months, until it was too painful, I didn't go that extra mile anymore. I was on dance team, which kept me "average"-- but Of course, feeling like a whale most of my life, I didn't even appreciate it then, because I didn't know how good I actually looked.  



(Here's a pic of me (blue striped shirt) of the day I was criticized... It's Blurry, because I couldn't scan it in, but it was me the most physically fit I had been in a long time... I didn't get to appreciate it, because I still felt huge. Sad...)

    I have a much thicker skin now, but at 14 or 15 yrs old, you don't really know how to deal with loved ones basically making you feel like you're not worthy to be loved by them, if you don't lose weight... and still at 34yrs old, it creeps up, because I haven't accomplished it, yet.  You get angry at the fact that now it has manifested into a problem & It's harder than it would've been had I been encouraged to keep going.  There's no reason to make things ten times harder for someone else.... especially if it's someone you say you love and ESPECIALLY if you don't even know that person... Words can be the most damaging weapon or the most strengthening tool...It's' all in how you use them. 

Ok- that's it! Comment Below, if you Like!! :)

Friday, May 1, 2015

What a Wicked Week!!!

   Welcome to the close of a Wicked fast week! So much to talk about! I'm so glad that I can share about what's been going on this week, with you fine folks! Check it out!

Favorite Activity:  Wicked 


   So, last night, my sister and I went to the Schuster Center to check out the Victoria Theatre's production of Wicked.  It was super fun & exciting! The Victoria Theatre Association always puts on an amazing show! They always get the costumes, special effects and makeup right!  The show itself was so interesting. I loved the story line! I always knew it had something to do with The Wizard of OZ being told from the Wicked Witch of the West's point of view, but never did I imagine that it would be so intricate and well written!  For starters, it's a truly different emotional ride than I thought I'd be on. I thought it was going to be this wicked witch telling a cheeky indulgent story about how "she was done wrong" and how everyone misunderstands her, etc, etc... What surprised me was that Wicked takes us back to a time far beyond twisters & Auntie Em. You meet Elphaba [later to be known as "The Wicked Witch of the West"] But not only that, you meet 'Galinda' [later to be "Glinda, the Good Witch of the North"] when they were students in college. This story is far more entertaining than I thought it was. Not only do you get to peer into the relationship the two witches had while they were younger, but you also get introductions to all of the Wizard of Oz characters, in the most fascinating ways! They kind of just sneak up on you, and after paying close attention to the dialogue, you realize, oh my goodness, that's the Cowardly Lion... Wait! He's gonna be the Tin Man! It's so amazing! The fact that the Victoria Theatre Association and Benjamin & Marian Schuster Center put on exquisite shows makes this show just as good as anything you'd see on Broadway!


     Another wickedly fun fact, Ashley Parker Angel played the part of Prince Fiyero! I realize that many of you guys are probably so young, you don't know who he is... Well, once upon a time, in a place called the Early 2000's, there was a little boy band called O-Town. O-Town was the band that was gleaned from a reality tv show called,  Making the Band with P.Diddy, Diddy, (Puffy) Sean Combs... whatever the dude is calling himself, these days...Ashley Parker Angel was like the Joey McIntyre of the group... from New Kids on the Block... What? Still not getting it?He was the Justin Timberlake of N'Sync!! Harry Styles,from One Direction??? Ok, now you're with me...
 O-Town released a total of 3 albums (2 of which, I don't know if anyone knew about), and pretty much faded into obscurity afterwards... never to be heard of again... until you see little emerald gems like band Hottie, Ashley Parker Angel on your local theatre stage!   It was awesome to see he's still doing his thing! 




Favorite Drink:  Wicked Witch Cocktail


   Malibu Coconut Rum, Midori Melon & Pineapple juice, topped with a bright red cherry makes the Citilites Restaurant a fun place to be on a Wicked night! It's a sweet tasting cocktail to enjoy before the show with friends and tasty tapas or appetizers! I loved the unique cuisine there, even if it was a bit on the pricier side. I had a couple of these with their Boursin Tenderloin Egg Rolls, which were tasty. They were two egg rolls of beef tenderloin, herbed  boursin cheese, Lemongrass, Horseradish cream and Jalapeno Jam. It was a great appetizer. The only critique I had was that it was $10 for the egg rolls, which weren't even that big. Had they added one more (2 half-rolls) it would've felt worth the money. 

Favorite Nostalgia:  Teen Girl Squad #4




   One of the really fun things that takes me back to my college days, is "Teen Girl Squad".  This was back when colleges had Computer Labs (do they still have those?) where you could do what you wanted in your free time or between classes.  I came across Homestarrunner.com, which had all these really cute & funny characters and cartoons. Teen Girl Squad cartoons were my favorite, because they stereotyped a group of girls in a social group, and they all made me laugh.I don't believe it's still around, but they always amused me. Watching some of these videos reminds me of some of the key jokes my friends and I used to laugh about! Check them out! They also have Strong Bad's Emails (because this was when email was HUGE) and other things to make you laugh! Youtube them & see what you find!

Favorite Soundtracks:  80's Movie Soundtrack Playlist

       One of the things I love doing is creating Musical playlists to listen to while I work.  Before I really got into the thick of my day a few days ago, I took one of those Pop Culture Quizzes on Facebook (How well do you know such in such movie?... How much of a fan are you?, etc...) This one was about 80's music in famous movies. I thought I could turn the answers into an eclectic group of tunes, and voila! Instant playlist! Of course I had to add a few of my own favorites. Trust me, there's plenty from Dirty Dancing, Breakfast Club and Flashdance! lol


Well, that does it! Time to go to the gym... Ugh... Fridays are like THE WORST days to go to the gym... Besides Mondays...Tuesdays... Wednesdays... Thursdays are ok... (lol) to go to the gym... But since my attitude adjustment a few weeks ago, my mindset has been better & although it's been easier to go... it's just never easy for me to want to go, especially since they have messed up Zumba at my Gym... *Sigh* Have a great weekend! Comment me! Subscribe!! :)

XO,
   Tiffani