Sunday, April 28, 2013

Slammin' By Summer.

Holla back, bloggies! Where ya crazies been all my life? Or really, where have I been for the past month?

Working my fucking ass off, quite literally.

Remember we talked about that whole going to the gym thing, New Year's resolutions, blah blah? Yeah. I wasn't really thinking it was going to work this time, because I go through those phases of going all the time, and then mehhh... I have other things to do. No. This time? This time is different. Other than my 3-week hiatus from having the flu, I have been at the gym 4-5 days a week, EVERY. WEEK. What is happening to my life.

I will tell you what happened. My friends, god love them, decided a few months ago they would start tracking. "Tracking. Pfft. I don't do that." I scoffed. Weekly weigh-ins. "Pfft. I don't even own a scale. That number? Means nothing to me." Yeah. About that. You know when everyone starts doing something and it seems kinda silly and you don't really want to be involved, and then one day, it just hits you that it's a good idea and you should probably do it? Because now it's your idea? (No? Am I the only one this happens to? It's not a good idea unless it's my idea.) Well. That happened. And #SlamminBySummer was born. (That's our hashtag on Instagram - @helenthefabulous if you want to follow me there!)

So I decided I'd give it a shot, not really expecting this time to be any different, because I eat pretty healthy for the most part and I'm... "moderately" active. And?

I. Love. It.

So much so that I've been going to the friggin gym at 5:10am, 3 days a week. That's AM, people.

 I'm tracking calories using MyFitnessPal (Helenthefabulous if you use MFP!) which is a really great little app - they literally have close to every food, ever, and you can "friend" your friends and it helps keep you accountable. Thankfully, most of my girls right now are on a fitness kick, so we are all using each other as competition  motivation. "Oh, those bitches are working out twice today? Psh, then I'M working out twice today!"

I have also found this great little "fit community" on Instagram - I've got some new friends that I've "met" via Mama Laughlin's IG feed, and they all blog and are seriously motivating, plus it's cool to see what works for other people, and what kind of fun toys they buy to go along with their workout gear.

Speaking of, I bought my first heart rate monitor last week. (I also bought a scale.) (And protein powder.) (Who. Am I.) I originally went with the Fitbit Zip, which was adorable, but after doing some research (yeah, after I bought it, genius) I realized it was mostly just guessing how many calories I was burning because it doesn't come with a chest strap. A lot of the girls I follow use a Polar HRM, so I went with the FT4 model - I really just want the calorie count, and I'm not enough of a runner that I need a GPS/distance counter. 

I was a little iffy about wearing the chest strap, but once it's on you don't even notice it. And that's really the only way you're going to get an accurate calorie count - the Stairmaster is always anywhere from 30-50 calories under what the Polar says. The instructions say you're supposed to wet the rubber part of the band before you put it on - um. I'm not sure why, and actually remembering to do that has been a bitch, but it seems to work fine without doing that. However. If you are a sweaty beast like me ("I have sweaty! I'm not teasing!") you will need to wash this band every few times you use it. I rinse it after every gym sesh, but it needs to be legit WASHED probably every three. Because gross.

Next on my wishlist is new sneakers but I'm not in dire need yet, but I'm going to go get legit fitted, because in the off-chance I do decide to go running (which DOES happen, sometimes) I'd prefer my knee to not be all fucky when I'm done. I love my baller Pumas but they are NOT running shoes.

So, I mentioned in my last post about before-bikini pictures? I am going to bite the bullet and put a picture of me in a bikini, on the INTERWEBZ. Technically, two pictures.

There is a noticeable, but not huge, difference in these two - first was in January, just for shits, and the second one was about 2-3 weeks ago - I had barely started tracking though, so I'm about 5 pounds down from that. And I think closer to 9 or 10 since I started working out this year, but since I didn't own a scale until recently, I'm not really sure. But let me tell you, I feel fan-fucking-tastic lately. "Working out will make you feel so much better, about everything!" I used to roll my eyes. No sir, it is true.

Also true.  

So if you want to start feeling better, get thee ass to a gym. Or a greenway. Or whatever. And find some friends to do it with you, because those wenches WILL hold you accountable - even if they don't come right out and say it. My friends and I are KILLING it for the month of April, as far as workouts go. 

Also, I know I did a whole post here on this - but another way to make yourself feel better? Go get your damn boobs fitted. This has nothing to do with my working out, but I have never been more in love with my boobs than I have been the past few months. BECAUSE MY DANG BRA FITS. You are welcome.

This week's manicure:
Essie's Bachelorette Bash, Ulta's Snow White

Sunday, April 7, 2013

Life Recap

Hey guys? Remember me? Yeah. Terrible blogger, I know. And the weather is getting nicer so I can pretty much guarantee that these entries won't be coming any more frequently than they are right now. So sorry. Patio drinks to be drank and pools to be tanned by. You know how it is.

Topics At The Random: aaaaaand go!

So March flew by. I was spoiled by all of my friends/family as far as birthday gifts go - including these amazing Prabal Gurung For Target shoes from Nicole:

I have embraced color into my wardrobe, finally:

Top: Gap, final sale, $12.97. Jeggings: Gap, final sale, $14.97
Oh yeah. Speaking of Gap. Gave my notice, so I'm done working there - need my weekends for aforementioned patio drinking and pool days. Plus it got to the point where I was spending more than I was making, at a store I wouldn't normally shop at, but since I was working there, I could justify it. No. No more.

Katrina came to visit over our birthday weekend, and we did a whole hell of a lot of nothing. I am slowly teaching my Sister Wives the Art of Being Lazy - they're sort of getting it. We ate a lot, shopped a little bit, but mostly just hung out. (This is what you should be prepared for if you ever come visit me: Eating. That's it. "What do you do when people come to visit you?" "Eat and shop." And don't leave my Birkdale Bubble, if we can help it.)

We also went and got tattoos to celebrate turning 27 (TWENTY. SEVEN. What.):

Sureeeeee did!
I'll probably end up incorporating this into a 1/4 sleeve on that arm but only once I can afford to plan a trip to Florida to visit Leon & Court at Brave Soul Cocoa Beach - trying out anyone new for actual art makes me sweaty with anxiety.

After our weekend, I came down with the flu. And I'm not talking that 24-hour, sleep it off flu. I woke up on Sunday, thought I had a hangover (after 4 drinks spanning 5 hours? no.) - then realized I've never had a hangover where my hair and my skin hurt. I proceeded to sleep pretty consistently through Wednesday, sweating my fever out at night, all the while seriously thinking I was on Death's Doorstep. Sore throat, skin that ached constantly, no appetite, tired, headache, cough. The kicker came when I finally convinced myself to go to the kitchen to make a smoothie, since I hadn't really eaten anything - and woke up, flat on the floor, with my knee gushing blood since I cut it on the edge of the dishwasher on the way down. OH HAY KITCHEN FLOOR, YOU FEEL SO GOOD AGAINST MY FLU-RIDDEN BODAYYYY. Very, very thankful for my person, Alexis, coming to save me from myself and take me to UrgentCare where the doctor put me on house arrest through the weekend. Hey built up PTO at work? SEE YA.

So. I'll be getting a flu shot next year, and every year after that, because I have literally never been sicker in my entire life. Ever.

Somehow, I've become addicted to going to the gym. And I'm slowly but surely noticing results. Katrina Gabby and I are on a Slammin' By Summer campaign, so I'm doing two Group Power classes (its sort of a bootcamp class but its all done with the step and a bar with different weights on it for different exercises) and 3-4 days a week of cardio. Mostly the Stairmaster - I'm up to 50 minutes at level 5-6 (the flu derailed me for a few weeks but I'm almost back to normal on that). After the first few weeks of normal gym-going, I was ravenous. I mean, Hungry Horrors every damn day. So I've been supplementing with a protein shake after my workouts, which really seems to be helping. (Optimum Nutrition Double Chocolate? Hi. I have to remind myself on the days that I don't work out, that I don't need to make one. Because it's delicious. Also, invest in a Magic Bullet if you don't have one. Katrina sent me one and holy MOLY it's my new favorite appliance.)

Not showing before/afters yet, but here's a sneak!
Also. No More Dating. I just cannot do it. The last one tried to explain to me what halftime was:

Me: Oh yeah I'm way into football and hockey, but not big on basketball.
Him: Well they play two halves, and right now is halftime. So they'll take a break, and come back out and play another half.

Uhhh. Yeah. I just explained to you that I DO follow sports, just not basketball. I know what halftime is, dick.