Just a Little Laughter

I've been told on numerous occasions that I laugh a lot.  Some would even say that I laugh too much.  Well, the fact of the matter is…..I can't help it.  As a kid I had it rough.  To be quite frank, I was ugly….frizzy hair, THICK glasses, ridiculously crooked teeth…ugly.  I was made fun of, my hair was pulled quite often, and the "strange" kid in the class always had a crush on me(which made me even more of an oddity-as seen below). 

Ugly Duckling 2Ugly Duckling 1

One day I decided that I would just laugh about it and make my own jokes in return…..it worked.  Even through all of this ugliness, I always had a ton of really great friends around me because I had the ability to laugh at anything and bring my friends into this laughter with me. The kids who teased me eventually stopped because they got bored with trying to make fun of the smile-less girl that broke into fits of laughter when they made jokes about her.  It could have also been when one of the boys in my class made fun of how big my teeth were and I quoted The Wolf from Little Red Riding Hood and then bit him. In any case….most people stopped with the making fun of me and even if they did, I laughed.

I laugh for any number of reasons….when something is genuinely funny, when something is disgusting, when I'm afraid or nervous or because of irony….ie, my car(or the car I used to have rather).  I had a day that my siblings were at my house with a few of my younger cousins and they cleaned my car until it was immaculate.  I really liked that car, it was a '91 Acura and it was cute.  My fiance drove to his sister's house and on the way back, the car was totaled.  I laughed.  The irony was too much for me(of course he emerged unscathed, and his niece and nephews were as well). In any case, my laughter is there because I like it.

I recently found an article that says laughter is good for your health.  This article says that researchers found that the act of laughing plays a role in fighting viruses, bacteria, cancer and heart disease as it helps to relieve stress which in turn lowers your risk for these diseases.  It's amazing what a little laughter can do!(apparently laughing makes you look better too-as seen here)

Laugh on! Laugh on!

Organizing body, mind, spirit….and my room

Lately I've found that I'm much more energetic than usual.  I don't mean I'm bouncing off of the walls or anything, but I'm not so lethargic when I leave work and I sleep better.  I wake up in the morning more rested than usual and I actually feel like doing things!

I've started truly organizing my space at home.  I have a once-upon-time-den that has been converted into my room.  It's the largest room in the house and I love it.  I found a way to organize it so that my living space is separate from my sleeping space.  Therefore, I don't see the television, computer, or even my stereo from my bed.  The idea was for me to make my sleeping are more serene and remove the "electrical interference".  Anyway, the area outside my serenity is a bit cluttered.  There are a few wires running back and forth and my daughter's play area is a little too close to them for my comfort.  I'm thinking I'm going to get some wire loom to hide them and make them less interesting to her or just move the whole thing again.  We'll see.

In any case, the point is that I'm not too exhausted to finally DO all of these things that I've planned to do for the past 2 months or so.  I've even gone through my little one's old clothes and donated or given away items that she can no longer fit….I still can't find anyone to give the bassinet to, I think I'll just call and have goodwill come and pick it up.  I still have a bit more to go, maybe I'll show you a picture or 2 of my successful wire management….once I get there.

What it Takes

After working at a diet company and living with a health nut, one would think that I would have already picked up on how to live a healthy lifestyle.  Apparently, it's not been so.  I have years of behaviors that I've been taught and couldn't break these bad habits.  Now it's been about a month, and I've changed my lifestyle incredibly.

For one, I've been planning all of my meals ahead of time so I'm not left stuffing whatever happens to be around into my mouth.  I've made it a point to have alternative meals around at all times. For example, when I go shopping for the week, I stow away a few items in the refrigerator at work so I have a backup plan for lunch.  For those days that I forget to bring my lunch with me, I'm short on change, or don't particularly like the menu that's been chosen for the day.

Also, I've cut back on my use of oils.  I don't use oil unless it's absolutely necessary. Then when I do use it, I watch the portions very carefully.  I've also been eating much more vegetables and fruit than I can ever remember.  I have a fruit or veggie with every meal.  Even the foods that I eat are more wholesome….like oatmeal.  I go for the old fashioned oatmeal instead of the instant with the flavors(those don't taste good to me anymore).

In addition to all of this, which I feel is making the biggest change for me, is consistent exercise.  I'm not skipping days or sleeping through my exercise urge.  I'm working out, and I'm actually beginning to enjoy it!

I have put this list together of the top 10 things I feel my change could not do without:

10. Dark Chocolate Squares- the best way to cure my chocolate cravings without going overboard
9. Mini-Stepper- I can get up and get going for thirty minutes to an hour on my stepper and love it
8. Pre-packaged frozen tilapia & salmon fillets- The EASIEST meal in the world when paired with #7
7. My George Foreman Grill- the best invention in the world, I've even gotten around to grilling sliced apples!
6. My "Fat" Jeans-  It's one of those- "You never know where you're going until you know where you've been"
5. Krystel– the girl loves to eat and wouldn't ask me to eat something that she wouldn't consume herself
4. Christina– she's gotten me off to a great start and I hope that we'll be doing more in the future
3. Jasmine- my daughter is key in this and my one and true motivation
2. Good Friends- It really helps to have people around that are willing to jump in front of a donut for you

and the NUMBER 1 thing my change could not do without(or help my change get started)

1. CableOrganizer.com– Why? Because I work there, and how many of your bosses would provide you with a personal trainer?

This takes a lot of dedication and I'm all for it.  I can't wait until next month when my numbers change even more and I can fit into my absolute favorite pair of jeans(a size 9/10).  I've got a long way to go, but I'm ready to progress.

Happy Days

Today was another workout day and the infamous weigh in…DUN
DUN DUN

I thought I’d gained weight for some reason, even though my
clothes are fitting much looser and I’ve dropped a whole size.  I have to say, I was terrified when I first
stepped on the scale or I figured it was another ½ pound.  Honestly I wouldn’t mind weighing the same
and wearing a 10 or even an 8, but it still becomes a bit frustrating when I’m
working my @$$ off and the scale doesn’t move. 
I’m grateful for the drop in sizes, but I’d like to see the scale move a
bit more.

So I weighed in AND got measured today.  Here are the results in comparison to last
month.

 

Date

 

 

5/22/2007

6/19/2007

Difference

Weight

178

173

5

Chest

40

39.75

0.25

Left
Triceps

14.25

13.75

0.5

Waist

32.5

31.75

0.75

Left
Thigh

26.5

25.25

1.25

Hips

43

42.5

0.5

WOOHOO!  I finally
lost more than half a pound.  Last week
I weighed in at 176.5lbs so I lost 3.5lbs this week….Oh my, oh my….

I am happy!

I’m bored!

I have to say that I’m really feeling and loving what’s
happening to my body.  I’ve dropped a
TRUE size.  I’m no longer wearing my
size 13/14 jeans that I’ve been in for what feels like forever.  I’m a 12… more like an 11 and a half, but
I’ll take it!

Even though I love my changes, I’m having some
difficulty.  I’m finding that I’m
getting bored with my foods.  I’m eating
great, not missing fried chicken or anything like that, but I’m getting tired
of eating cereal for breakfast because I can’t figure out what else to eat that
won’t be a huge jump in calories or sugar.

This is usually the part of my diets that go bad.  This is where I always begin to fail.  I’ve done this before…I gained 30lbs when I
moved out of my parent’s house about five years ago. I went from 165lbs to
195lbs.  I worked on this…. ate better,
exercised, lost the 30lbs, then got bored and stopped.  I somehow managed to maintain the 165 for
about a year after that. But I still failed.

This time, I’ve resolved not to fail.  I’ve worked for a diet company before, so I
know I can do this.  I’ve helped people
reach their goals and drop 50+ lbs, but I find it so hard to do the same for
myself.  Now I will help myself, this is
what I’ve done….

This morning for breakfast, I didn’t eat cereal or oatmeal
with fruit and milk.  Instead I did a
major substitution.  I was reading an
article in a children’s magazine about getting your children to eat oatmeal.  The suggestion was to add dry, whole grains
or oatmeal to yogurt.  Light bulb!  As a result, this morning, I made myself a
parfait.  I just did a few layers of
yogurt (which is a substitution for milk), with assorted berries, and dry
oats.  It was delicious!

During the day, I found other substitutions that I could
make.  Instead of a diet soda, I kinda
made my own….I had a Perrier water with one of those “one bottle” packets of
Crystal Light.  It’s like a really good
tasting diet fruit soda.

I can finish my mission and not die of boredom in the
process!

Difficult Weekends…. Question Answered

So….This weekend was another difficult one for me.  I had great food choices when I was at home,
but on the go meals and snacks were the worst. 
What I did manage to do was do some sort of activity for at least 30
minutes for every “bad” food I ate.  I
understand that it’s ok to have one cheat item, but having more than 2 is a
bust for your diet.

My main goal in working out was to make sure that I had
enough energy to keep up with my 1-1/2 yr old daughter. So far, so good!  My highlight for this weekend was at my
godsons’ birthday party. Yes, I know what you’re thinking….ANOTHER birthday
party!  I can’t help it, I have a tight
group of friends, about 6 of them, and they each have a minimum of 2
children.  In theory, this means 1 party
a month.  Once you factor in family
members, that raises to @3 parties per month. So anyway, at the party…..my
friend happens to have this wonderful little park just across the street from
her house.  Perfect!  All of the kids, including the biggest of
them all- me, were at the park running around. 
My daughter had a blast.  Most of
the party was spent with me chasing her around the park.  Then was raced down the slide, ran through
this little obstacle course-which got me sliding through tubes and crawling on
the ground, etc….  Then there was the
famed Monkey Bars.  A few of the older
kids at the party were there “hanging” around, so I decided to do the
same.  I used to do this all the time as
a  kid and did so up until shortly
before I became pregnant.  I found it
pretty easy to lift all 177lbs of me up, then swung my legs over the bars and
locked my feet into the bars in front of me. 
I DID IT!

Tiffani just hangin' aroundAshli Hangin'

It was pretty amazing to most of the kids around us at the
time, who of course couldn’t believe that this grown woman, nonetheless-a mom,
was hanging from the monkey bars.  My
friends, of course, expected this kind of thing from me, so surprise was not it
for them.  It was more like…..”Tiffani is
Back”.  I decided to make the most of
this hanging upside-down situation.  My
daughter was running in circles below me, obviously quite excited to be at the
park and to see mommy hanging this way. 
So we made a game of it.  I
picked her up and swung her back and forth a few times, then side to side.  After a while, it was time for me to get
down.  Once my feet were firmly planted
on the ground, my daughter and I kept up our game. Running all around the park,
through the tubes, up and over a “wall”, down the slide, up the slide, up the
twisty pole, down the twisty pole…

We spent a total of about 45 minutes to an hour running
around at this park.  By the time we went
home I felt like I’d just had a full workout. 
My arms, abs, and legs were throbbing. 
I have answered another very important question for myself: How do I
incorporate exercise into my lifestyle without taking away time from my
daughter? 

Work Out With The Devil and Her Daughter

Today was another workout day for us.  I should be excited, I should be
pumped!  I was not.  It was officially “day one” for me and I was
feeling exhausted.  I had not one bit of
energy and still hadn’t gotten the full “cramps” thing resolved.  Drinking massive amounts of water helped a
bit…..but it just wasn’t enough.

5pm- Workout Time. All day long I simply considered skipping
the workout for today and going home instead. 
I wouldn’t do it….I’m a trooper, I can do this.  Christina brought along an assistant trainer
for the day, aka- her daughter Gabby. 
Gabby is an adorable little 10-yr-old girl.  She’s an absolute sweetheart, but just as tough as her
mother. 

During our workout we did Military style pushups, sat on the
wall, hopped on one leg(then switched)ran backwards the length of our
warehouse, then ran forward the same length. 
The worst part of this was the walking lunges that we did up and down an
incline BEFORE all of that.  At this
point I swore I was seeing horns on Christina’s head.  Once we all got up front again the torture continued and little
flames were dancing around Christina’s head.


Even though I felt like Hell had opened up and
swallowed me, I kept it moving. I was relieved at 5:45(I had to leave early to
get my little one from daycare).  If I
had gone another 15 minutes today, I’m pretty sure that my breakfast, snack and
lunch would have been revealed to my coworkers in a most unpleasant way.  Today was difficult, but I’ll come back stronger
the next day.  “Day One” will NOT get
the best of me.  Now I’ll retire to my
bed….after I have a hot cup of tea and 2 maximum strength midol.