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My excessive energy, extreme narcissism, and intense love of neon-colored spandex is both managed and fueled by my addiction to fitness. I push myself to extremes and I push other people's buttons. Obviously I needed my own blog.

Friday, September 14, 2018

2018 Quarterly Goal Update - Q2


April I made it to 8 CrossFit classes.
May I made it to 13 CrossFit classes.
June I made it to 13 CrossFit classes.
Quarter Total: 34
Total/Year Goal: 74/180


April I attended 3 Infinity Yoga classes and 1 Southern OM class.
May I attended 2 Yoga Works classes (Infinity Yoga's new name) and 1 Bottom Line Yoga class.
June I attended 1 Bikram Yoga Roslyn class.
Quarter Total: 8
Total/Year Goal: 16/50



Apirl I tucked 2 times.
June I tucked 1 time.
Quarter Total: 3
Total/Year Goal: 19/50



April I ran 2.4 miles.
May I ran 3.9 miles.
Quarter Total: 16.3
Total for Year: 17.6

Thursday, September 6, 2018

Major Life Changes

If you follow me on Instagram (@inshapeoutofmind), you might have seen that I have gone back to school. After some deep reflection, prayer, and encouragement from my parents, I decided that I needed to take the leap and go after something I have been secretly dreaming about for a while. I want to be a registered dietitian. By the grace of God, I got into Georgia State University's post baccalaureate program even though school was starting in less than a week. I have several prerequisite courses to take before I can apply to the master's degree coordinated program in dietetics. I left my job to focus on school, but am looking for part-time work, so if you know of opportunities, please let your girl know!



So I'm back in college. It's exciting and also scary. I'm learning so much and needing to relearn how to study. Coursework is a lot different 10 years later. The iPhone came out right before my senior year. It was both a phone AND an iPod! Mind blown! Now I use my iPhone to answer participation questions in class. My textbooks each have apps. It will read my textbook to me.

Remember that time I told you that I wanted to win the fat loss challenge and then I won? I believe that putting your thoughts and dreams out into the world help you to realize them. And so I share the following goals with you:

  1. Earn an A- or above in all of my prerequisite courses, which will be 3 semesters of chemistry, 2 semesters of human anatomy and physiology, precalculus, and principles of nutrition.
  2. Rock the shit out of the GRE with a 165 or above on both the verbal and quantitative sections and a 5 or above in the writing section.
  3. Get accepted into Georgia State University's Master of Science coordinated program in dietetics.
  4. Maintain an A average throughout the program.
  5. Intern at an Atlanta hospital working with patients with chronic diseases.
  6. Rock the shit out of the Registration Examination for Dietitians.
  7. Become employed at an Atlanta medical facility working with patients with chronic diseases.
  8. Establish my own practice working with clients who are interested in nutrition coaching with a focus on wellness in addition to weight loss or muscle gain. (Think a step above if it fits your macros. What about your micros?)
I look forward to blogging about my journey and building my knowledge so I have useful content to share with you. I am excited to be on this road to becoming a registered dietitian!

Wednesday, August 1, 2018

Weight Loss Wednesday 8.1.18

I won the Affinity Athletic Summer Shred Challenge! Honest to goodness, came in first place! I made some pretty good progress but I actually only lost about a pound between April 29, 2018 and July 22, 2018.

My before photos are below with my hair up. I took two sets - one neutral and one letting it all hang out. I weighed 152.2 that weekend.

These three photos were taken standing in a neutral position. I wasn't sticking my tummy out and I wasn't flexing. I took them with the auto setting on my iPhone.


I checked the rules of the challenge before taking these photos and we were allowed to make ourselves look as chunky as we wanted. I made sure to eat a lot the night before and reverse flex as much as possible. These are the photos I officially submitted as my before photos.


These are my after photos on July 22. The pilot took them for me. I am flexing. I weighed 151 lbs.


So what actually changed?

1. Body Fat: My body fat percentage lowered from 23.1% to 22.5%. I have increased muscle definition and my back fat has reduced. I learned it's pretty hard to manipulate a back fat photo no matter how hard you flex!

2. Training: I go to CrossFit four days a week. I usually workout for about two hours. I go to class, I do some physical therapy exercises, I do programming I get from my coach to work on my weaknesses, and I do the "extra piece" if I have the time. 

3. Diet: I initially lowered my calories from ~2,300 to ~1,600. Now I'm back up to ~1,900 - 2,000. My estimated maintenance calories are around 2,000 so I'd like to hang out here for a while to see if I can continue to recomp.

Sunday, June 24, 2018

5 Year CrossFit Anniversary Post 5

In honor of my 5 year CrossFit anniversary, this week I am sharing five things that have changed since I started. The fifth are my friends.

When I started CrossFit in 2013, I didn't know how to make friends. I was 26 years old and apparently never learned this essential skill, and apparently it was the root of 99% of my issues. I had some friends but for the life of me I can't figure out how or why they wanted to spend time with me. I was a real gem back then. Read: a huge pain in the ass and a loose cannon.


If you go back and read some of my first posts about CrossFit, I talk about being nervous about having to sit alone and be awkward until class started. It sounds a little stupid to me now, but it never occurred to me to walk up to anyone and just introduce myself. And that wasn't just at CrossFit. I confidently navigated work situations, but the whole meet people, decide you like each other, and then start hanging out thing was really out of my wheelhouse.

Friday, June 22, 2018

5 Year CrossFit Anniversary Post 4

In honor of my 5 year CrossFit anniversary, this week I am sharing five things that have changed since I started. The fourth is how I face my fears and tackle the unknown.

When I started CrossFit in 2013, I was dealing with some serious imposter syndrome. I felt like I was pretending to be successful at work (I was actually succeeding at work and worked really hard) and pretending to have my shit together personally (I was actually really struggling to keep it together). Feeling inadequate is still something I struggle with on a regular basis. My biggest fear, besides home invaders, is that people will figure out that I don't have it all together and that I'm a hot mess and decide that I can't do my job or take care of my dogs and take everything that I've worked for away. I am actually quite good at my job and I manage a team of 4 people, who regularly give me positive reviews as a boss. I am a fantastic and responsible dog mom. I know these things rationally but don't always believe them. I still wrestle with self-doubt but it used to be closer to self-loathing. I was just waiting for someone to realize that I was a terrible person who sucked at everything and for that someone to announce it to the world.

I've always been someone who has been uncomfortable with not being good at things. I used to hate to go to ice skating lessons because I didn't know how to do the cool or fancy things that other kids could do. I would try to distract the instructors with my charming conversation skills (I was 4) to avoid having to skate at all. I eventually quit. Years later, I decided I wanted to play ice hockey and the same feelings of inadequacy came flooding back. I eventually quit that too. I developed a tendency of intentionally avoiding new things because I was afraid I'd be bad at them.

That's a big reason I flip flopped on leaving Equinox and joining a CrossFit box. I was intrigued by CrossFit, but also scared of it. I wasn't afraid of getting hurt. I was afraid of not being good and being judged.

Tons of shit at CrossFit is scary. It was scary to walk into the gym for the first time, feeling overweight and out of shape. It was scary to be the newbie in a room full of strangers who could do so many things that I couldn't (yet). It was scary to try to climb a rope for the first time since elementary school. It was scary to take off my shirt at a place where many people have visible abs because what if they thought I looked gross. It was scary to be vulnerable and admit that I didn't know what to do and that I needed help. CrossFit was scary because it was filled with daily opportunities to face a fear and the unknown.

Honestly, the best thing I have ever done was just show up to the gym each day. I did what was asked of me. I trusted my coaches. I did things that scared the crap out of me because I wanted to be a part of CrossFit. That first year, I got really used to being uncomfortable.

Screenshot from a 2014 video of me climbing a rope at CFID

CrossFit forces you to get out of your comfort zone. That's why it's life changing. Climbing a rope was a big deal to me because it felt impossible for a long time. I'm not a big fan of heights and there's been some moments where I'm worried about falling, but I was most afraid of failing. In my head, I'm often still a fat kid who thinks she shouldn't be able to hold her own bodyweight up while dangling in the air. But I've learned to climb the 16 foot rope and I can do it several times in a workout. Sometimes, when I'm reaching up to touch the tape at the top of the rope, I almost can't believe that just 5 years ago I couldn't do this. CrossFit provides me with tangible proof that I am capable.


Screenshot from a 2014 video of me climbing a rope at CFID


The gym is the space where I can try new things and fail at them while I'm learning. There are things I'm really good at (doubleunders) and things I really suck at (handstand push-ups), but I had to let go of ego and put the work in to get good at those doubleunders. Sometimes I feel like a strong badass and totally have my ass handed to me during the same class.

CrossFit gives me the opportunity to build my confidence and be vulnerable every single day. It keeps me humble, it keeps me hungry. It let's me prove to myself that I am enough.

Thursday, June 21, 2018

5 Year CrossFit Anniversary Post 3

In honor of my 5 year CrossFit anniversary, this week I am sharing five things that have changed since I started. The third is how I spend my evenings.

When I started CrossFit in 2013, I spent a lot of time in bars. I was going out 5 or 6 nights a week. It wasn't unusual for me to work all day, go to happy hour at 7, go back to the office until 10:30 and then go straight to a bar on the UES. I was maintaining "regular status" at four different establishments. It's safe to say that I drank a lot.

I lived alone, I was in my twenties, and I was in New York. I wasn't the only person in those bars every night. CrossFit gave me something to look forward to in the afternoon and evenings. But I was definitely still going to happy hour either before or after class.

I moved to Georgia in May 2014 and I had no friends. The only people I knew in Atlanta were one girl with whom I went to college who seemed to like when I visited her but shut me out as soon as I moved down here, and my then-boyfriend's family. I was dating my boyfriend long distance. I had no social life. Suddenly I had a lot of time on my hands.

I was at the gym a lot. Since I worked from home, it was the only human interaction I had all day. I went to sleep pretty early because it's not like I had anyone keeping me up, matching me drink for drink. I've never been good at CrossFit, but during this 10 month period, I improved like crazy. I got my first handstand. All my lifts went up. I squatted 200#. It was a magical time.

In the fall of 2014, Eric and Brandon bought CrossFit Identity and brought over a lot of members from CrossFit Decatur. The majority of CFID's original membership were married with kids. A lot of the new members were single and into going out. I think the community has a nice blend of people in all stages of their lives, but I remember being pretty excited about the new demographic. On a side note, being a member at CFID has shown me that you can be happily married with three kids and still be the coolest couple ever, so my fears about marriage and children are largely unfounded.

My boyfriend and I broke up the following summer and I decided to make up for every single night I stayed in while we were together. I became a regular at some Atlanta bars. (You can see my smiling face on the back TV at Moe's and Joe's.) I made friends with the people at my apartment complex. I was back to going out regularly. I definitely woke up with a lot of hangovers, but my dogs kept me in check. And bars close a lot earlier in Atlanta than they do in New York.

Somewhere over the past year, I found more of a balance. I do enjoy going out and I am so thankful to have so many friends here in Atlanta, but I stay in most school nights. I rarely drink at all during the week. Having wine with dinner on a Tuesday just isn't my thing. I train at 5:30 AM two days a week and I need to get to bed early to be able to perform at that ungodly hour. I'm singlehandedly keeping the rosé industry operating Friday and Saturday, but I box it in.

CrossFit has given me an opportunity to socialize daily without alcohol. It has also given me the greatest group of friends to drink with. CrossFit can be contradictory.

Wednesday, June 20, 2018

5 Year CrossFit Anniversary Post 2

In honor of my 5 year CrossFit anniversary, this week I am sharing five things that have changed since I started. The second is how I eat.

When I started CrossFit in 2013, my diet left a lot to be desired. I ordered Chinese from Hunan Delight thirty-eight times that past year. THIRTY-EIGHT TIMES! (There was an intervention in 2012.) ConEdison contacted me every 6 months to inform me that the gas might not be working in my apartment because the stove had not been turned on during that period. There was a lot of skipping meals followed by epic binges.

One morning I woke up one Saturday hungover and didn't eat per usual, and I pinned myself under the lady bar. I realized the reason I always felt like garbage was because the majority of the calories I consumed came from alcohol and dumplings. I slowly started cleaning up my diet.

I followed a pretty common CrossFit diet trajectory. I decided to embrace the Paleo diet after dabbling in it in the past. I tried another Whole30. I remember coming home at around 11 PM after going to the 9:15 PM CrossFit class and being so damn tired that I would throw a bag of veggies into the microwave and just cover them in coconut oil. I'm not sure I ate protein besides bacon. Someone pointed out to me that cocaine is Paleo but oatmeal is not, and I started to question if it was really that bad to eat Greek yogurt. I switched to Primal and ate a lot of Kerrygold butter.

My diet got better when I reconnected with an old boyfriend who tracked everything he ate in MyFitnessPal like he would be executed if he didn't. I still followed a mostly Primal diet on weekdays but then we would binge eat all weekend. Nothing like two former fat kids in love and let loose in a Publix. We would strategize the cocktail hour at weddings to make sure we maximized our hors d'oeuvres intake. He would beeline for the bar and get drinks while I filled up two plates and found a table. Then we would alternate returning for our favorites while the other person held down the fort.

I tried to follow macros but was still very wary of carbs. I tried using a Paleo meal service but got discouraged when I realized the macro calculations were significantly off. I started prepping my own meals, which sounds like crazy talk to anyone who knew me while I lived in New York. I ended up hiring a macro coach and had some success with her. I'm not very compliant on weekends or when I travel, and it was only after I acknowledged and embraced that fact that I started to see real progress.

I learned that I could eat anything as long as it fit my macros. I went from being scared of carbs to putting Gatorade in my protein shake and eating Jolly Ranchers during workouts.

I tried reversing and a bulk, which left me a lot heavier than I would have liked but it taught me a lot about how I eat, what my triggers are, and what I can do to set myself up for success. After being able to make almost anything fit my macros, I realized I like eating whole foods, and I enjoy chicken and broccoli. I track from 7 PM to 6:59 PM so my dinner informs the remaining 24 hours. This switch has been the most helpful.

Right now I am using macros from Affinity Athletics Coach Delta and trying to be reasonable on weekends. To be honest, that usually means eating small amounts to offset the amount I drink in the pool. I prep almost all of my own foods when I'm home, but do eat out frequently because of my work travel. I will always make room for tacos. I still enjoy margaritas.

CrossFit has made me see that what I eat (or don't eat) has a direct impact on my performance in the gym. You really can't outtrain a shitty diet, abs really are made in the kitchen, and it's really hard to get bulky because I've tried.

This is just proof that I do sometimes use my oven:




Tuesday, June 19, 2018

5 Year CrossFit Anniversary Post 1

My 5 year CrossFit anniversary was Sunday. It was also Father's Day so I didn't want to steal my dad's thunder, but it felt like a momentous occasion. A lot has happened and changed in five years, and I credit all of the good things to my decision to start CrossFit.

I chose my CrossFit anniversary as the date I started CrossFit Essentials, basically the same on-ramp, foundations, 101 you took at your CrossFit, because it was the day I committed to being a member at CrossFit Hell's Kitchen. Earlier that month, I had convinced my friend and then-co-worker Selby to take me with him to a class. We did Nicole. I got stuck in a pull-up band hanging from the rig. Years before (in 2010), an old boyfriend took me to a soon-to-open aspiring CrossFit affiliate in Connecticut. None of the things I love about CrossFit (the community, barbells, lady wolfpacks of badass women) were there because it wasn't actually open yet and so I kept my Equinox membership for three more years. Sometimes I regret that, because what if my first CrossFit experience was awesome and I had started back in 2010? But I don't think I was ready for it yet. I needed to become an ultrarunner and continue to make terrible life decisions for a while.

Wednesday, May 30, 2018

Weight Loss Wednesday 5.30.18

I survived two days in a Ford Expedition with my parents, aunt, and uncle as we drove around Iowa and Missouri. And somehow I consumed my weight in Crunchy Cheetos but I came home at the same weight as when I left.

That's me shoved in the way back with all the luggage. Sadly that is a plastic pin full of fake floral arrangements and not a margarita maker.

Wednesday, May 23, 2018

Weight Loss Wednesday 5.23.18

We are back on the weight loss train folks.

May 23, 2018 Progress Photos




Weekly Average Weight: 151.6 lbs
Body Fat Percentage: 23.6%
Lean Body Mass: 115.9 lbs

Friday, May 4, 2018

A Thank You Letter to Greenville, SC

Dear Greenville,

Thank you for making my days a little bit brighter after a week that was awful personally and professionally. Thank you for welcoming me to your beautiful city and for letting me get outside in nature. Thank you for having good food and a kickass hot yoga studio. I will be back.

With love and gratitude,

Allie


Last Sunday I drove up to Greenville, SC from Atlanta because I was presenting at a conference. The week prior, I had to cancel yet another vacation, been forced to work on my days off, and my relationship hit the skids for what is probably for good this time. I have a stressful job because I like my job and enjoy solving problems. I don't want a stressful boyfriend because I don't like stressful boyfriends and the way he treats me has been my problem. A two and a half hour drive is a good time to do some self-reflection. I ended up listening to Barbell Shrugged instead. Is anyone else frustrated by the Shrugged Collective podcast channel? What if I only want to listen to certain podcasts? Can I filter for them? Or do I have to seriously sit their and add only Barbell Shrugged to my queue so I don't drive someone off the road trying to find the good stuff?

Here are some highlights from the trip.

Monday, April 16, 2018

I am Very Satisfied

I got back from visiting my parents' last night and for the very first time ever, I woke up the day after my trip weighing the exact same amount that I weighed the day I left for my trip. My parents take me to some really great restaurants and they pay for it all. I usually stuff myself like a person who doesn't know where their next meal is coming from. I eat until it hurts because this is my opportunity to eat THIS for FREE, and now that I live in Georgia it's nearly impossible to get (insert some New York food item that they might actually have in Georgia.) But for real though, you cannot get a legit ham egg and cheese in the state of Georgia and it pains me.

It was awesome having my mom take my progress photos this week for the challenge #potatoes

I'm a big fan of Alex Maclin. He was a co-host on Barbell Shrugged during this period when Mike Bledsoe, Doug Larson (who I love!), and Chris Moore temporarily passed the torch to some other guys. The way he describes things just speaks to me. Lucky for me he started posting articles. In his latest post for the Basic as F*ck Nutrition Eating Habits Series, he posted this infographic:

Alex Maclin's Infographic

I just stopped eating each meal at a level 3. I didn't try to track it or shove the protein portion of the meal down to hit some numbers. It was so freaking mind blowing.

Personally, I cannot eat that way every day because I wouldn't get enough protein, would undereat during the workweek, and start to bring back bad binge/restrict cycles. But hell fucking yeah, I think I just showed myself that I can handle vacations and other short periods of not tracking. Woohoo!

Saturday, April 7, 2018

2018 Quarterly Goal Update - Q1


January I made it to 15 CrossFit classes.
February I made it to 8 CrossFit classes.
March I made it to 17 CrossFit classes.
Quarter Total: 40
Total/Year Goal: 40/180


January I attended 1 Be Hot Yoga class.
February I attended 1 YogaPod Austin class.
March I attended 6 Infinity Yoga classes.
Quarter Total: 8
Total/Year Goal: 8/50



January I tucked 3 times.
February I tucked 11 times. There was a studio challenge.
March I tucked 2 times.
Quarter Total: 16
Total/Year Goal: 16/50



March I ran 11.3 miles.
Quarter Total: 11.3
Total for Year: 11.3



January I attended 2 SoulCycle classes.
Quarter Total: 2
Total for Year: 2

Tuesday, March 20, 2018

A Terrible Day

Today I had a terrible time at CrossFit. CrossFit is literally the only time in my entire day when someone isn't asking me to do something for or give something to them. I look forward to going usually. I recently committed to staying after class on Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday to complete the exit work programming, even if I don't like it because I want to be better at CrossFit. It's been difficult to reconcile that pretty much the entire gym got better in the past two years and I have gotten worse. Yes, I can look at my stressful job and my required work travel as justifications for why I am where I am now, but the straight truth is a lot of people worked their asses off practicing and I did not. I spent 8 minutes in the bottom of a handstand push-up last Saturday, not even remotely kipping off the ground, which shouldn't be surprising since I haven't attempted a HSPU since 2016. The last time I did them, I used two ab mats.

Which brings us to tonight. The extra work programming today was 10x10 unbroken handstand push-ups. I told myself last night and all day today that I had to stay and practice. So after the workout, even though I wanted to go home, I went and grabbed two ab mats and went to practice HSPUs by myself. Apparently we don't use two ab mats anymore, even for practice, which I learned when the coach stopped coaching the 6 PM class to ask me if I liked breaking ab mats. I don't think he meant to hurt my feelings, or at least I hope he didn't, but I was humiliated. I wasn't trying to break anything. I just wanted to work at something that I am really bad at in hopes that I could improve and not spend 8 minutes futilely attempting to handstand push-up next year. I felt so stupid, so fat, and so uncoordinated. When he told me to put the ab mats back, I choked back tears while I wiped them down. And then I walked to my car and cried. I ugly cried sitting in the parking lot for 10 minutes. I ugly cried all the way home. I ugly cried while I texted my friend Kayte. I'm actually ugly crying now.

I think I can usually take a joke. Maybe it's the constant feeling of failure at work, or being at home all alone all day, or not seeing my boyfriend for months, but I've just felt awful for a really long time. I didn't want to be a person who sneaks out of the gym to cry in the parking lot. CrossFit used to make me really happy, but lately it's just a reminder of things I can't do well anymore. My working sets for 80% back squats today was my old warm-up weight. It's humbling. It's also easy to walk out right after the workout instead of staying to work on things that I suck at, and so I guess I was particularly sensitive to these comments.

So of course I want to quit the gym and find somewhere else or something else to do, but I know that if this happened to someone else and that person asked my advice, I'd tell her to let herself cool down and just go back tomorrow and put her head down and get back to work. I guess the only thing I can do is put my head down and practice because otherwise the only person I am hurting is myself.

Here's a picture of my new Blender Bottle. I think it's pretty and it's about the only thing I've got going for myself today.

Friday, March 9, 2018

Exploring Yoga

One of my 2018 goals is to attend 50 yoga classes. I want to increase my flexibility and fix my janky shoulder. And I need to relax. I have had several trying months. My anxiety and stress reached an unbearable level to where my coping method has become to do nothing. Like actual nothing. Sit on the couch with the tv on to repeat television and reset my alarm over and over again telling myself just 30 more minutes nothing. I have decided to do more by committing to less.

I started the New Year with a few classes at Be Hot Yoga. It's bastardized Bikram but the only thing you can get in in-town Atlanta.


I've discovered that I like vinyasa, power, and flow classes. When I was in Austin last week I stopped by the newly opened Yoga Pod studio. It's located in Arboretum Crossing, which is apparently in/near/somewhat close to Far West Austin. I think means the bougie burbs. I liked the studio a lot.



I went to podFLOW2 taught by Bryce Valdez. "podFLOW 2 classes, set to music, are dynamic and accessible, offering more challenging postures and variations based on the fundamentals of the podFLOW1 classes. Teachers bring their own creative element to podFLOW 2, resulting in diverse and inspiring classes. Each class focuses on proper alignment techniques and safe and intelligent sequencing progressions." podFLOW2 wasn't super advanced. If you've attended a few yoga classes in your life, you could keep up.


Last night I tried Infinity Yoga in Old Fourth Ward, Atlanta. I live nearby, I've heard good things, and they have a $20 new client special. I went to Infinity Flow taught by Ashley Lorenzo. Infinity Flow is described as, "powerful dynamic flowing sequences with music! Many skill levels come to this class so many options are given, however knowledge of sun salutations and solid all around fitness is recommended for this class. Be prepared to sweat and have fun! Classroom temperature is WARM (between 82-87 degrees)." It was an advanced class. My body doesn't contort in those directions. But I had a good time and I'd go that class again.

Friday, January 26, 2018

Semi-Covert Food Scale Use

I regularly see people asking how to track food at restaurants if the nutrition information isn’t posted. They go all meltdown, forgetting that the nutrition information at chain restaurants isn’t 100% accurate anyway. You do not have to eat at Applebee’s unless you want to if you’re tracking macros. I eat out frequently because I travel so much for work. Sometimes I eyeball portions. Sometimes I will weigh one item and then multiply it. So for example, if I weigh a piece of pineapple at the breakfast buffet and it weighs 11 grams, I will take 6 pieces and log 66 grams. And sometimes I’m eating alone in a nearly empty restaurant and I put my food scale on the table because I give zero fucks.

It’s really about making the right decisions for your goals. If you eat out once a week, eyeball the portions. If you are dining with people who might be weirded out by your food scale, like clients, eyeball the portions. If it’s your birthday, you get infinity macros. But if it’s just you or you are with other macro-counters, break out the scale. I’ve seen people get really aggressive online about how carrying a food scale around with you is eating disorder behavior and you should only weigh food at home. Well Martha, I’m envious of your 9 – 5 PM job with your designated lunch hour, which you take in the break room equipped with a refrigerator and microwave. I see that you went away exactly 2 days in the past 52 weeks and that was to your sister’s house for Thanksgiving. Tell me more about how to live my life. Martha is a bitch and she can’t tell you how to reach your goals. If you become overly reliant on your travel food scale, give yourself a break. But if you would like to learn how I use mine in restaurants without looking like a total nutjob, I took photos last night.

What You Need:
1.       Menu
2.       Food scale
3.       Paper
4.       Writing utensil
5.       Food log like MyFitnessPal

Step 1: Review the menu for what you want to eat. I recently started tracking 7 PM to 7 AM, which has made choosing what to eat so much easier for dinner. Basically I start fresh at 7 PM allowing me the greatest amount of flexibility. If dining out, I either choose something similar to what I would make for myself, or whatever the restaurant or city is known for.

Last night I chose the honey baked salmon with vegetables and a dessert from the hotel restaurant menu. I make salmon for myself but I don't know how to honey bake it. I actually didn't realize that my selection came from a daily specials menu that included dessert. Normally I wouldn't order dessert unless I really wanted it but I like apple cobbler and I paid for it, so I ate it.

Wednesday, January 24, 2018

Weight Loss Wednesday 1.24.18

It's been over 7 months since my last Weight Loss Wednesday post and I've spent that time on a reverse diet. My goal during this period was to be compliant to my macros and gradually increase them. If I gained 0.6 lbs or less a week, the Avatar Nutrition would increase my macros. If I gained more or was non-compliant, the system would hold my macros steady. My macros have gone from 137 P 194 C 63 F to 118 P 305 C 101 F. It's been both fun and challenging. 

Photos from my last dunk test on January 6.

Thanks for taking these Florie!

I've much fluffier than I'd like to be but I'm thinking long-term goals.

Saturday, January 20, 2018

SoulCycle and Comfort Zones


I don't usually feel out of shape or nervous when I'm in a gym or fitness studio. I've been blogging about going to the gym and fitness studios for eight years. I've been showing up to them for six years before that. I'm pretty confident in my ability to do the movements or be able to laugh at myself as I learn how to do them. So I signed up for SoulCycle the other day because there's a studio literally down the street from the hotel in which I was staying. I put myself in the front row, because, you know, I'm in the top 3 on the leaderboard whenever I go to Flywheel. And I have been to SoulCycle twice before in 2013 and 2014. I felt prepared for class.

Oh how I was wrong.

I very quickly realized that whatever the people around me were doing, was not what I was doing. It was choreographed and it looked really cool to see them perform synchronously. And then there was me bopping around on the wrong beat. The lights are really dim. There's no monitor to help you gauge how to adjust the flywheel. At Flywheel they tell you to set it between 15-18, over 34, between 25-27 etc. Here, it was all 3 full turns on the bike! Three full turns from where? A flat road? An entirely-to-the left knob? I also learned pretty quickly that I skip a pedal beat each time I try to adjust the wheel, which apparently has never caused an issue in a spin class until I tried to keep up with this bunch.

I was embarrassed. I kept thinking that other people were thinking that I didn't belong in the first row. I was also wearing pants that didn't fit, so that didn't help me at all. You should try spandex on when you find it in your bedroom closet at your parents' house, especially if it still has the tags on it.

I survived the class. I want to add that everyone at SoulCycle NOMAD was very nice and helpful. No one told me I sucked or that I belonged on the bike in the back in the corner. I just felt like I belonged on the bike in the back in the corner. I went back to my hotel, took a shower, wrote two grant progress reports, and went to bed so I could wake up early to trudge to my professional development day ALL THE WAY IN THE FIDI in wintery mix. We stayed in a hotel by our office so people could safely wander home from the company party and still make it to the meeting at the office the next morning, which I was thankfully exempt from attending.

I, instead, returned to SoulCycle on Thursday morning with a mild hangover from the cheap ass wine I enjoyed at the aforementioned company party. You sign up for the specific bike that you want when you sign up for class. After Tuesday evening, I considered asking for another bike that was not front and center by the instructor. I fretted about it. I told myself I didn't deserve a bike in the front and that I would distract the other riders with my inability to do choreographed push-ups on multiple handlebars while following the beat of a song that I'm damn near positive would never play on Atlanta's 94.9 The Bull (which a is a pop country station with an affinity for Luke Brian that is often on in my car.) But I also considered that this was the 8 AM class and the hardcore really good people were probably already on their way to work and that maybe I should just tell my brain to shut the hell up and keep my bike.

I thought about my friend Jen. We met at the tennis court at sleep-away camp when I was 12 years old. My bunk was filled with cliquey bitches and I was sad that I didn't have any friends. Jen told me she would be my friend and told me there was an empty bed in her bunk. Her bunk was for the girls slightly older than me but she said she'd help me talk to the counselors and see if I could move in. I did that week. And I lived with that bunk for two summers after that. Jen is still a fantastic human being. She is a great wife and a great mother. Her kids are the kids you dream of having. They are thoughtful, moral, funny, and beautiful - just like their mom.

Jen started her fitness journey last year. She impresses me every day with her commitment. She looks great and she's trying new things. She recently tried a spin class. Apparently she's been hesitant to go even though the instructor kept telling her to try it. I told her she had to try it. What kind of person would I be if I told my friend that she had to go try spin class, but then I hid in the back corner because I was embarrassed that I wasn't the best person in the SoulCycle room? So I kept my bike, I asked for help setting it up because that thing looks nothing like what I'm used to, and I clipped in. And I did much fucking better than I did on Tuesday. I had a great time. I felt why people are obsessed with SoulCycle and call it a religious experience. I stepped out of my comfort zone and it felt really good.

Wednesday, January 10, 2018

Temporarily Homeless

A pipe froze and burst in my neighbor's apartment last week. After stubbornly insisting that I did not need to move into a different apartment and camping out on my couch, I have officially been displaced today as the contractor blocked off my bathroom to take down the ceiling. The dogs and I sought refuge at a dog-friendly hotel. Of course, we could have stayed in one of the dog-friendly hotels in midtown Atlanta, but instead I chose our hotel based on its proximity to my gym.

Frank and me enjoying our bouch = bed + couch.

The Red Roof Inn is most certainly a motel, but it's growing on me. The employees are courteous and helpful. This Superior King room is larger than my New York studio apartment. We ate delicious fajitas from Taqueria Los Rayos while watching Catfish. We even made friends with a nice girl named Kelsi while we were out for our bedtime walk. Things could definitely be worse.



I can't stop thinking about Gone Girl and that I might find some unsavory characters ready to kill me for my meager worldly possessions. It's probably going to be the shirtless guy with the long braided ponytail who keeps alternating between sitting in his pick-up truck directly outside of his motel room and giving me dirty looks as he walks back inside.

Guard dogs.

Frank apparently loves motel living. Daisy Mae, poor thing, keeps looking for her bed stairs. I'll have to pick them up from our place tomorrow.


Pray for us.

Monday, January 1, 2018

New Year, New Goals: 2018 Edition



It's a new year and I've got some new goals. One of my goals this year is to actually post my monthly goal update in a timely manner. My primary goal is to lower my stress and anxiety so that I can enjoy my life and stop grinding my teeth.


Fitness and Nutrition

WOD 180 times in 2018: My goal is to go to CrossFit an average of 15 times per month. I went to CrossFit 160 times in 2016 and 148 times in 2017. I want to push myself to reach what I think is an attainable goal.

Get flexible and go to yoga 50 times: A Baptiste yoga studio opened near my apartment and I'm looking forward to checking it out. I enjoy Bikram yoga as well and that's been helping my back feel better.

Go to Pure Barre 50 times: I really liked Pure Barre Inman Park when I checked it out in December. It's right down the hill from my apartment. They have a 7 AM class that I intend to go to a couple of times a week.

Repair my metabolism by spending 7 months in maintenance: I have been on a reverse diet since June and I increased my calories to 2,600 a day. Now I need to spend 7 months in maintenance so that my metabolism adjusts to these calories and my weight evens out. This will allow me to cut at higher calories. Thirty-four weeks at maintenance is going to be difficult mentally, but I am committed to following through on this process.


Wellness

I'm not giving myself specific goals for wellness but there are areas that I would like to improve.

Work between 9 AM and 5 PM unless there is a big project or extenuating circumstance. This is a big source of my stress. I enjoy the flexibility of working from home but I have had so much work these past two years that I feel a lot of stress and guilt if I'm not always working. I blocked out a schedule that structures my time more effectively. With the help of my new hires, I hope to have a 9 - 5 job one day.

Spend time in nature with my dogs. They like to hike. I like to hike. We should spend more time hiking.

Spend less money. I spend a lot of money on things I don't need like new gym clothes and restaurant dinners. I would like to reign in my spending a bit and increase my savings.
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