Holy Moly!!!

Posted: January 4, 2013 in Uncategorized

Wow and welcome to the Reddit community!  You’ve all made my blog numbers soar!  I hope Greg didn’t disappoint you with his post!  I had no idea he was going to use my journey on his favorite website, actually I was wondering for quite some time on December 30 what in the wHaT was going on with my viewership being off the charts!?!?!  I was so upset with him, and then I was kind of excited!  Everyone loves a good train wreck I suppose.  I hope you continue to read and please let me know if there is anything you’d like to see.

“Yesterday is gone. Tomorrow has not yet come. We have only today. Let us begin.” –Mother Teresa

Today is Friday, January 4, 2013.  Can you believe it?  Where in the world do the years go?  When you look at a day being 24 hours, or 1440 minutes, or 86,400 seconds it seems long until you live it.  I remember how long summers seemed growing up as a child.  Riding bicycles, going to little league games, playing in the pool, Tracy Brown and I running to her Grams house for lunch just in time to watch Days of our Lives.

“Time is a game played beautifully by children.” – Heraclitus

Most of the time I couldn’t wait for summer to end to get back to school; I would get so bored by the end of those 90 days.  Three months always seem like eternity in the most awkward years of your life.  When I was 16 I got a part time job at Redner’s Warehouse Markets as a cashier, gosh that summer flew by.  I recall telling friends that I couldn’t go out late or I’d have to miss the hike up Bear Pride (our local mountain ;) because I didn’t get off until 4.  Even then, being young and carefree, I could feel my youth and precious moments swiftly passing me by.   I learned responsibility and made some money but I don’t think I fully grasped just how precious time really was as a teen.  When we came back for senior year of high school everyone talked about vacations and parties, I looked back on moments with Judy (the woman next to me at the checkout) and Mike (the stock-boy) no regrets just lessons learned.  I worked all though college and every summer home, sometimes two jobs back to back, I wish someone would have held me down and said, “You’re going to work for the rest of your life, enjoy your youth while you still have it.” Personally now, I consider work the worst time sucker.  Most of us work 8 hours a day, but when you think about shift work or alternative work schedules or having multiple jobs some folks work anywhere from 10-14 hours a day.  We have to start doing things we love or making time for things we love doing. 

“Time is an equal opportunity employer. Each human being has exactly the same number of hours and minutes every day. Rich people can’t buy more hours. Scientists can’t invent new minutes. And you can’t save time to spend it on another day. Even so, time is amazingly fair and forgiving. No matter how much time you’ve wasted in the past, you still have an entire tomorrow.” –Denis Waitley

2013 is the year of the Water Snake or if you are like me and enjoy a sexier name, the year of the Junior Dragon!  According to Chinese wisdom this year paves the way for all things possible (love that.)

I want to make 2013 my healthiest year yet!  I don’t want to make a resolution and honestly I’d like to try a goal-less year.  If you know me well, you know this is not going to be easy but I’m committed to making good decisions and spending a year enjoying life.  I’d like to see my family more than twice this year, I’d like to hang out with my girlfriends to catch up on life, I want to eat healthy and workout because it’s good for me.  My main priority will be Zumba in the New Year and to become a better BodyPump instructor.  I want to create at least 6 new Spinning routines and recruit 3 people to the gym.  Mostly, I want to give back.  January is going to be the month I lay out 2013 desires not goals.  I’m going to post workouts, photos, meals, moments and happiness.  I want to be honest about me, the good and the bad.  I want people to know that everyone has ups and downs; life isn’t the smiles we see on Facebook or the months leading up to a reunion.  Join me, write down your desires for 2013!  Check back with them monthly, see how far you’ve come or what more you need to do!

“For what it’s worth: it’s never too late or, in my case, too early to be whoever you want to be. There’s no time limit, stop whenever you want. You can change or stay the same, there are no rules to this thing. We can make the best or the worst of it. I hope you make the best of it. And I hope you see things that startle you. I hope you feel things you never felt before. I hope you meet people with a different point of view. I hope you live a life you’re proud of. If you find that you’re not, I hope you have the courage to start all over again.” – Eric Roth, the Curious Case of Benjamin Button screenplay

xoxo,

Jess

Why is it so hard?

Posted: December 19, 2012 in Uncategorized

“Hard is trying to rebuild yourself, piece by piece, with no instruction book, and no clue as to where all the important bits are supposed to go.”
― Nick Hornby, A Long Way Down

Hard is what happens after, it wasn’t running the marathon or training for the bodybuilding competition.  It happened after the 6 months of running, it happened after the 5 months of strict exercising and dieting.  I stopped, I accomplished my goals and I stopped.  I am a monogamous goal achiever.  I don’t know who else I can be; I don’t know what crazy goal I can set next.  Trust me I am looking all over the place to find something to fill the void.   I feel like a shadow of my former self when I’m not focusing on a target.  I’m lost and unsure of myself.  I run out of things to talk about.  If I’m not 110% engrossed in something I feel boring, like why would anyone care what I have to say about my mundane life that consists of working, eating, teaching and sleeping?

Hard was not knowing what to write.  That’s why you haven’t heard from me in so long.  Why would you care to know what I’m doing when I’m not doing a darn thing?  I went to the doctor to try and explain this feeling of exhaustion, the stomach bloat, the weight gain, the inability to catch my breath after a moderately tough workout.  They took blood, I find out the results on Friday.  My biggest fear is for them to say, “You look fine, blood work is clean.”  The reason I fear health?   I’m in my own head; I would almost rather have a serious problem to explain the devastation I’m feeling inside instead of knowing it’s just me.  It’s like I’ve already given up on myself.

Hard is wishing I would have known what this was going to be like, feel like.  The after.  The ‘after the glory’… I wonder if this is what football players feel at the end of a winning season.  After the trophies and the rings and the photos, after all of their friends and family stop fearing for their health and wellbeing?  I wonder if they have this sense of longing.  In bodybuilding they say that you may be off season, but you are always in training.  The push for me was so hard for so long the simple thought of training again exhausts me.  Even though I know I can do it, I just don’t want to.

Hard is having a new plan and not following it.  I have a new diet (lifestyle) to follow, a new instruction book to review and worship, and I’m working at it but the desire isn’t there.  I’ve lost my luster.  It may be the holidays and the fact that I have priorities I need to handle in my personal life, I’m not sure.  Currently I feel I’m just living my life, not working to better it.  I don’t know how to make this void go away.  I would love to say, well, I’m going to do another competition in April.  But quite honestly that wouldn’t be possible considering the state of mind and physique I’m currently in.  I wouldn’t have enough time to start over.  Ugh, did you just hear that omission?  Start over, I would need another 5 months to get back in that amazing shape, I only have 4… *shaking my head with tears in my eyes*…

Hard is forgetting why I started.  I remember beginning my program the first time.  Two of my wonderful, amazing friends, Lauren and Amber came to visit in DC.  We had drinks and sweets.  I knew I had to start that weekend or very close to it.  I knew that one slip meant starting over.  I had fun but then got right to it and never looked back until the trophy was in my grips.  I’ve had ‘fun’ for 2 months now and I’ve never been more miserable.  Between the tummy troubles and the poking and prodding I do daily to my hips and thighs, it can’t be healthy.  I’ve never been someone to find comfort with food, but I’ve become one.  I’ve learned that even if you are eating healthy clean food, if you eat too much of it, you will expand.  Like a mantra in my mind I keep saying there must be a happy medium, the strange thing is, I don’t remember when I hit my happy point or a medium… I remember being proud of my progress but the process was so fast at the end, leaner and leaner, stronger and stronger, as I look back at the photos I’m trying to remember when I was content, when I was satisfied.  I don’t know if I ever had that chat with myself, if I ever said, ‘even if I don’t win, this is a wonderful ride, look what I’ve accomplished.’  Maybe I should have.  Maybe if I would have been proud of myself and not always trying to get bigger and faster and leaner I would have taken just a moment to enjoy the person I was becoming and how much I was learning.

So I digress.   I’ve decided to write one nice thing to myself everyday starting today.  I have a dimple, it is cute. ;)  It’s the best I can do…. It’s superficial but it will do.  Want to join me?  Give yourself and compliment and let me know!  You’ll make me smile and show my dimple!  Maybe if we all do it, it won’t be quite as hard.

Xoxo,

Jess

After the curtain falls…

Posted: November 29, 2012 in Uncategorized

Since childhood I’ve always been in the spotlight.  Whether it was pageants or theatre, cheer leading or parades you could say I was born on stage.  I remember (through photos) my first baby contest crawling out of my dad’s arms and into my mothers.  I won, Terry Whalen came in second :)  There were Schuylkill Mall prettiest baby contests; dance lessons leading to the Poconos and trophies, singing sessions with Mrs. Stagawalt for choir concerts…  My life is and always has been about performing.  It’s always been about being pretty and winning, striving for excellence without getting dirty or God forbid a black and blue (gasp).

Quick side note: Have any of you ever seen me try and play a sport?  It’s awful (I use a lot of emphasis on the word TRY.)  I have no, absolutely NO skills.  I can’t swing a bat or hit a volley ball and I’m not so great on a team.  Personally I think all of these things/skills are learned at a young age when you a) have no fear of injury and b) brain is a sponge.  Sometimes I daydream of what my life would be like if I was that child in tee ball instead of getting fitted for a white ball gown in a children’s size 6.  What if I was the girl with lots of potential running up and down the basketball court rather than curling my eyelashes and sleeping in hair rollers?  I consider the difference of learning how to win by working together in a team versus practicing my 2 minute routine for the millionth time.  All these little decisions children never actually make for themselves shape the adults we become.

In my pre-teen years theatre became my life, oh how I adored the stage.  The main reason I gave up pageants was my love of drama.  I’ll never forget that day in church when Amanda Gill and I met Kim Laird (co-theatre director,) something was alive in me from the moment Kim mentioned the stage.  Immediately after joining the Rainbow’s End it dawned on me that I met a family that consisted of two of the most influential people, outside of my parents, that I will ever meet and a group of young-ins that were my siblings.  We did everything together, skits and plays long hours that centered on anything from Abbott and Costello to Midsummer Night’s Dream.  I could be anyone; Lucille Ball, or the villain, a dragon or its slayer.  Frankly, the absolute best decision of my life was that AMAZING little group and the two directors that whipped us into shape Kim and Rob.  Here is where I learned how to play, that imagination is endless, I learned empathy and collaboration, how to problem solve from a different point of view.  I was taught how to relax and pretend, how to trust, rehearse and perform (without always smiling at the camera.)  Bonus I still got to wear make-up!!!  These skills were and are invaluable; coordination, concentration and balance gave way to juggling and painting, I learned a great appreciation for the Arts and got to participate in Arts Festivals all over the states and Canada.   In those years hard work and dedication paid off and those two skills can never be taken away from me, neither can the love that I felt from those two wonderful people.

Both Pageants and Theatre prepared me for my challenges, from death and disappointment to divorce and devastation.  They have paved the way to a strong base before I sprint full force into crazy and fall amongst lessons learned.

In adulthood I’ve always appreciated my upbringing.  It made me a great interviewer, wonderful public speaker, and comfortable in front of a crowd or camera.  I learned my strengths and weaknesses; that I have good communication skills and confidence, I can handle pressure, stress and frustration… the list does go on and on.  It made me love hair and make-up, two of my biggest passions today; I can French braid my own hair, use every hair plug-in appliance like a pro and when it comes to make-up, my baby, the only thing I could spend hours on and then take it all off and start over for a completely different look all day long… seriously, my full time dream job LOVE LoVe love.

These are skills I now easily use as a business development analyst, personal trainer, group exercise instructor, fiancé, daughter, sister and friend.  But then there is the dark side… Sometimes I beat myself up over the little things.  This is the side I don’t like to talk about, the one that is hidden behind the smile.

It’s easy to say that I am driven and committed to goals and personal growth.  But what I believe will always be my biggest battle; I’m my own worst critic and constantly striving for unattainable recognition.  I can remember posting photos of thin beautiful woman on my walls in high school and college, writing hateful things to myself in my journal, making posters to hang on my fridge.  Going for runs while not eating carbs and hating my legs.  Body image and approval from others has always been my focus, it’s always been in the forefront of my mind.  Every goal and every desire I have is for what I believe will get me to the holy grail of happiness.  When will it be enough, when will I have enough part time jobs, enough money, enough clothing, enough friends?  When will I feel overwhelmingly happy?  I thought it was the marathon, then the figure competition.  But the desire is still there.  Will it be after my marriage?  Maybe it will occur after the birth of my first child?  When will I no longer literally beat myself up for something that isn’t about the goal at all, but a much deeper desire for something missing?

For as much as I am fortunate and trust me I know I have a great life, I have a void.  There is a missing link, an overwhelming need for love and affection.  Whether it’s shown to me though praise or warmth doesn’t seem to matter, deep down in the ugly parts no one wants to discuss I’m lost always searching.

In this fulfillment search I’ve learned how to recognize others and express how proud I am of their accomplishments.   As a parent I’m going to over-tell my children how proud I am, I don’t think we hear it enough growing up or as adults (I know I didn’t.)  My spinning class would tell you that I always say how proud Mama (Me) is of them.

All of this could just be hormones.  Since the competition I’ve been a mess.  Between the weight gain and obscure body image, my night sweats and heart rate’s inability to regulate it’s been a rough few weeks.  I’ve come to this simple conclusion: My past has molded me into the woman I am today and truthfully, I like me.  I feel like a strong, independent, smart and supportive woman.  What more could I ask of myself?

xoxo,

Jess

Winning photos!

Posted: November 29, 2012 in Uncategorized

The final product!

WWAW Halupkies!

Posted: November 5, 2012 in Uncategorized

Well hello there!

What a wonderful weekend!  We had a great time at Spinning Nation and then an after party at our place.  There was enough food to feed 3 times the amount of guests but then again, no one went home hungry either.

On Sunday we were feeling a bit gluttonous from over eating and (the 15 bottles of wine we went though) over drinking so we had a nice walk around the market and I had an overwhelming desire for comfort food.  I realized it was time for Halupkies!  We were walking past so many wonderful heads of cabbage, I couldn’t resist.  Now prior to my eating healthy routine the halupkies I love and have grown up with have sauerkraut and bacon inside and that wasn’t going to end this overindulgence weekend oh a high so there I was staring at my Joy of Cooking cookbook.  I couldn’t have been happier with the result!!!  They turned out super yummy and well seasoned!

Halupkies (adapted from the Joy of Cooking)

2 lbs ground turkey (you can use beef or chicken)

1 Head green cabbage (about 2 lbs)

2 large eggs

1/4 cup almond flour/meal

3/4 cup minute brown rice

1 cup water

1 large carrot, grated

1 large stalk celery, finely chopped

1 sweet onion, finely chopped

3 cloves garlic, minced

1/2 TBSP black pepper

1 TBSP basil

1 TBSP parsley

Sauce:

Remainder of cabbage

1/2 onion

1 TBSP coconut oil

1/2 cup White Wine

1 can fire roasted tomatoes

28 oz jar of pasta sauce (or make your own sauce)

Instructions:

Bring 4 quarts of water to a rolling boil in a stockpot.  Add 1 1/2 TBSP of salt (this is the only place I added salt)

Cut out the core with a small, sharp knife, then drop cored side down into the water.  Boil for 5 to 10 minutes (I boiled for 10 minutes and it was a bit too long, my leaves were soft and hard to work with without poking holes in the cabbage,) then remove from the pot and carefully remove the softened outer leaves.

While the cabbage is boiling prepare the mixture.  In a large bowl combine ground meat, eggs, almond flour/meal, uncooked brown rice, water, carrot, celery, onion, garlic and spices.  Mix but do not over mix.  Don’t forget to preheat your oven to 350 degrees.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Remove one leaf at a time and trim off enough of the center rib of each leaf to make the leaf supple enough to roll (I made a little V.)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Wrap the meat mixture about 1/3 cup in each leaf as shown, folding the sides first.  Remember to wrap the mixture loosely, as the rice will expand in cooking.  Repeat with all the leaves until the mixture is gone about 20 Halupkies (if you would like to make less, I would have no idea why you would want to do such a thing, but should you, just 1/2 the recipe.)  Place seam side down in a roasting pan ( I used some Pam on the bottom so they didn’t stick.)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Place seam side down in a roasting pan ( I used some Pam on the bottom so they didn’t stick.)

 

 

 

Start your sauce: Chop the remaining center cabbage or any left over leaves (about 1 cup) and 1/2 of an onion.  Heat 1 TBSP of coconut oil in a large skillet and saute the cabbage and the onion for about 6- 8 minutes until tender and golden brown.  Add 1/2 cup white wine and simmer for about 5 minutes.  Add fire roasted tomatoes and jar of pasta sauce, continue to simmer 5 more minutes.  Pour mixture on top of Halupkies.  FYI your mixture will have more sauce then these photos.  I added the jar of pasta sauce after I took the photos… if not you would have seen a sea of red on the top of the roasting pan and nothing else!

 

 

 

Place the lid on the roasting pan and put the Halupkies into the 350 degree oven for 1.5 hours basting every 30 minutes or so.  Enjoy!

xoxo,

Jess

What We Ate Weekend!

Posted: November 1, 2012 in Uncategorized

Hi everyone!

Greg and I are still trying to get back to some sort of normal, back into a routine that makes sense for our super busy lives.  The good news is… I have stopped eating nothing but sugar!!!  I realized when I was running yesterday and felt like everything on my body was jiggling and I couldn’t breathe and I had shine splints that the red velvet cupcakes, blueberry muffins and bacon, cheddar, scallion biscuits were NOT WORTH IT (well maybe the biscuits because those were to die for, but I didn’t need to eat all 3!)  So as of Tuesday, sugar and processed goodies are out of my diet again for awhile until I can learn to enjoy simple pleasures.  The high I get from exercise is way better than the sugar high I got from the Reese’s peanut butter cup that had me reaching for the sweet potato biscuit that I couldn’t eat without a homemade pop tart… I’m not saying I will never enjoy a brownie again, because that would be a lie; but I’m not going to kill myself slowly with things I used to be able to savor in moderation.  Did everyone notice that I didn’t go near cheesecake?  I once wrote and many of you know that I would NEVER, EVER consider cheesecake a mistake.  I didn’t even think about it on my week off.  Totally forced myself to forget the word cheesecake and the decadence of it’s deliciousness.  I truly believe that had an entire cheesecake been before me, I would have lost all control * I admit I had very little, but seriously, a whole cheesecake, I would have eaten the sh*t out of that *… come to think of it… those would have been some awesome photos to post! ;)

But anyway, back to my new idea!!!  Because of Sandy I wasn’t able to update you on this splendid mental breakthrough for the blog.  I want to start doing recipes, some that I love, some that failed but mostly just simple delicious dishes that are not only easy but also quite good for you!

This weekend one of my besties had a Halloween party.  She (Lynn) was going to have all kinds of good food for us (beef, cheese, dips, sushi and WINE)  but I wanted to participate and bring a salad too.  Greg and I went to Eastern Market (something we do almost every weekend) and picked up some fresh veggies, wonderful greens and a light bulb went off!  An autumn salad I saw one afternoon I was on the step mill… it looked delicious and I love lentils!!!!!   This is my version of that salad, it’s almost identical but I didn’t use as much EVOO and took away the salt.  Just so you know, it got rave reviews at the party!  I also doubled the recipe so we’d have some left overs for the week.  Enjoy!  And let me know what you think about WWAW (What We Ate Weekend.)

Roasted Autumn Vegetables: (Recipe adapted from Daphne Oz’s Roasted Autumn Vegetables on The Chew)

  • 4 small carrots (halved lengthwise)
  • 3 shallots (halved)
  • 1 butternut squash (halved and seeded and then cut in 1/2-inch slices)
  • 1/2 pound brussels sprouts (halved)
  • 4 cloves garlic
  • 4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1/2 cup dried black lentils (rinsed)
  • 1/2 onion (studded with 4 cloves)
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1.5 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
  • 1/2 tablespoon dijon mustard
  • 1/2 pound arugula
  • 2 Celery Stalks (thinly sliced)
  • 1 Lemon (zest and juice)
  • 1/3 Parmigiano (to garnish)

Instructions:

1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees

2. In a large bowl, combine the carrots, shallots, squash, brussels sprouts, and garlic (keep the garlic whole, it will make the last step easier.) Drizzle 2 tablespoons of the olive oil and season with salt and pepper, toss to coat. Pour vegetables onto a sheet tray (I used my roasting pan and lid) and roast in the oven for 30 minutes, tossing once, halfway through.

Fresh black pepper on top!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

3. Meanwhile, prepare the lentils by putting them into a small saucepan and covering with water by 2 inches. Add the onion (when dicing the onion use large chunks, you’ll have to pull them out of the lentils and discard them)  and bay leaf. Bring to a boil, then simmer covered for 20 minutes or until tender. Drain and discard the onion and bay leaf, season with salt and pepper, and set aside.  (Currently I don’t use any salt in my recipes.  I lost all taste for it, personally I didn’t think this recipe needed it.)

4. Once the vegetables are finished roasting, remove the garlic. Peel and mash the garlic in a medium bowl, combine with the remaining 2 tablespoons of olive oil, apple cider vinegar, and dijon mustard and whisk into a vinaigrette. Toss the lentils with the vinaigrette, fold in the arugula leaves.  In a large bowl, combine roasted vegetables with fresh celery ( I didn’t slice the celery, honestly it was taking too long so I broke out my peeler and just shaved away at the stalk, total time saver and it worked perfectly,) lemon juice and zest.

Try to keep the garlic on top so you can fish it out.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

5. Serve dressed lentils over the roasted vegetables .  Garnish with Parmigiano.

Yummy

Normal.

Posted: October 25, 2012 in Uncategorized

That is quite a simple word.  Everyone has some sort of normal in their lives.  We sleep on the same side of the bed, wake up around the same time every day, choose to eat or skip breakfast (fyi, you should NEVER skip breakfast), drive or take public transit to work… you get the idea.

Well my normal has been shifted.  I no longer need to wake up at the butt crack of dawn and do an endless hour of cardio, it’s not acceptable for me to eat chicken breast, egg whites and oatmeal for breakfast. Eating a snack at at 11:30 seems silly, my lunch, should it be the same chicken and broccoli with rice?  Do I eat out with my co-workers?  Should I have that pumpkin spiced latte I’ve been dreaming of?  What about the cupcakes that everyone brought in for me?  How about the yogurt express that my boss wants to buy? What should I do at my lunch time workout?  How do I burn 1000 or more calories in one hour vs. three?  Do I stay late and lift?  What should I focus on?!?!?!?!  AHHHHHH!!!!!

So all in all, I am a mess.  A complete and total mess.  I have no idea what I’m doing.  I feel like I am spiraling out of control…

REWIND…

Saturday was wonderful!  I did so well in my competition!  I got 1st place in the figure debut division, 2nd place in figure novice division and 3rd place in figure open division.

My goal this whole time was to win the debut division.  I wanted to beat all of the ladies that were new to this; debut meant this was every woman’s first competition!  I killed it! J  Yay me!

The other two divisions were a tossup.  I was excited to place as high as I did, the novice category was for all the women who have never won 1st and open was for all of the ladies in the competition.  I wasn’t going to sign up for that category but I’m sure glad I did!  All of the ladies did so well, I met some awesome women!  The overall winner was an inspiration!  Her transformation and muscle development were nothing short of a miracle!  I’m in awe of her, I know how hard she worked and her dedication to this goal, gosh, her muscles… AMAZEBALLS… she rocked!  Can you tell I had a bit of a girl crush?!?!?!

To all of my family and friends that came out (Greg, Jeremy, Shara, my big brother Michael, my sister in law Shannon, my niece Macie, my dad, my very good friends Lynn, Susan and Steph with her new and wonderful boyfriend and two of my nearest and dearest Jill and O, Milton from Golds came and also Jen a fellow competitor that is competing this weekend!  Good luck Jen!  I also want to give a shout out to all of you that wished me luck on Facebook, my blog and though text messages and emails the outpouring of love was more than I ever dreamed.  My final shout out goes to Damon for the totally rocking mix he put together, everyone loved my ‘Vogue’!!!)  It was a very long day, and I appreciated everyone sitting though the 112 or so competitors for my 54 second routine!  We finished up around 11 PM, got back into DC around 12, I washed my suit, showered my super tanned body and hopped into bed just in time to get about 5 hours of sleep before waking for the Army 10 miler.  At mile 5 I realized I could get a PR and then slapped myself (literally) and slowed down… no need to push my luck.  I hadn’t had a full glass of water since the Wednesday before the competition…  silly girl.

FAST FORWARD…

After the race is when my sense of ‘Normal’ went on a downward spiral.  We went to a little restaurant that I love in NW, Dupont Italian Kitchen fondly referred to as “DIKs” for my spaghetti and meatballs.  Well, I started with a Margarita then went to tomato, basil, mozzarella bread.  My spaghetti was delicious, washing it down with another margarita followed by dessert, which I ate all of except for one bite… Tiramisu.   A couple friends stopped by and I had another margarita where I openly admitted to forgetting what a ‘fun’ drunk I am… oh goodness.  After lunch (yes, all that was lunch) I went to get a giant yogurt with raspberries, peanut butter cup and dark chocolate chips as the toppers.  I fell fast asleep on the ride home and then slept another 3 hours once we got there.  I can’t even remember what I ate for dinner.  I think it was my left over spaghetti, a meat patty I had left over from the week before and a chocolate chip muffin with a glass of milk; I also ate a chocolate chip cookie somewhere during the day because it was missing when I woke up on Monday…. Suspect!

Bloody Monday.  What a disaster.  I knew Greg and I were doing a date night, gosh, we hadn’t had one of those in FOREVER!!!  I started the day well with oatmeal but as soon as I got to work I had a protein bar, cookie, apple… the rest is a blur… at night we went to a delicious restaurant where I had salad, soup, pasta, spinach, about 4 loaves of bread soaked in olive oil and a giant porterhouse steak.  Dessert was more Tiramisu, a chocolate cake and a latte.  When we got home I had 8 Oreo cookies with another glass of milk.  I don’t want to talk about it…

Tuesday was the nail in the coffin… it was my wake up call, it had to be… I think I would have exploded.  Tuesday scared the crap out of me, not kidding.  I woke up had oatmeal, came into work and had a pumpkin spiced latte.  A girlfriend bought me a brownie cheesecake cupcake that I devoured with a glass of milk.  Food trucks for lunch with a cookie.  Another co-worker wanted to buy me a coffee so yep you guessed it, another pumpkin spiced latte with yep, another whole cupcake and why not, another glass of milk.  My boss took me out for frozen yogurt right before I left for home… ugh.  I was feeling so sick.  Before this mess I call my eating life I hadn’t had a taste of dairy in 5 months!!!!!!!!  I have no idea what I was thinking but I could barely move.  Then I went home and had about 3 blocks of cheese where I ate them on top of this delicious bread from a little place on 8th street.  AND A BOTTLE OF WINE.

FOOD COMA!  On Wednesday I was so sick to my stomach I had to call in sick.  I truly was sick.  I was also so mad at myself.  I feel like I haven’t honored all of my hard work or any of my training.  A mess, the scale did not lie.  In exactly 4 days I gained 10 pounds!!!!!

So yesterday I got my crap together.  I figured out a new plan, it’s a lot like my old plan where I ease things back in just like I took them away.  I am going back to eating the same way I did 12 weeks out from the competition.  It’s normal calories including fats, carbs and proteins; but at least I know I can stick to that.  The saddest part for me is that I never was a sweets person.  I never really liked them and now I can’t be trusted around them.

I’m telling you all this because I want you to know the truth.  You deserve the truth; you deserve to know that the state I was in was not a ‘normal’ state.  I was very deprived, my body and mind were not in the right place for life back to ‘normal.’  Thank goodness for my classes last night and also my class tonight.  Thank goodness for my friends and family and their continued support.  I know I need to stay active.  I’ve been working out again and that totally helps!  Today was a success.  I cheated only a little but I did it with rice cakes and almond butter!  I’m going to try to lay off the milk for a bit because I think I had enough in 3 days to last about 6 months of ‘normal’ dairy eating.

I hope you don’t mind, I’d like to keep the blog going.  It’s really good for me to get this stuff out.  My new goal is to stay strong and just take this new post contest prep process, one day (meal) at a time!  I hope this post hasn’t disappointed all/any of you, I know you were so proud, I promise to pull myself together!

xoxo,

Jess