Grab a Bag

So yesterday I didn’t get a chance to blog. Okay, so I just didn’t.  Mainly because I was having a bad day and secondly after having a bad day I just wanted to go to sleep.  So let me tell you how this day had me about to grab my gym bag and no not to hit the gym but to swing.

Anyone who has ever been in a fight, when a girl grabs her bag that means she’s about to suit up to do some damage.  That was how I felt because I was all in my feelings.  All week I was super excited to see my doctor for my appointment. I was ready to see all the positive from a year ago.  Now it was positive until we got on the topic of my belly and this past surgery.  I guess because losing the weight isn’t an issue the issue is more the swelly belly.  I love when I wake up and I am all the way on.  Belly looking flat flat and my body looking good in my clothes.  UNTIL, the day I wake up and look like I was carrying a secret love child and then I am not feeling it.  Well during my appointment I was seen by a male student who I tried to explain how I felt and he gave me the most distant stare.  I was looking like really, engage, care, offer tips, do something but NOPE! He just stared at me like I had 3 breasts.

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Let’s back it up to earlier in the day I had to professionally tell someone off.  I consider myself to be queen of the go off but in certain arenas you have to behave accordingly. Well I did that until the other person went left and I had to bring them back to reality.  So I was still fuming from that interaction, the student doctor was blind and not getting it, and the night before I had gotten into an argument with my husband over trash.  Yes over a trash can-lawd save all the trash cans lids in our community Jesus! So at this point I am at take my earrings off mood.  So I did what any responsible adult would do, I just took a deep breath rolled my eyes at the student doctor, and waited for my doctor to come in.  As soon as she saw me she said what’s wrong.  I put my husband on hold, put the student doctor on hold, put the day on hold, and told her how I felt about all of this process since the surgery. I don’t think I had verbally talked about it until yesterday.  Yes I blogged about it and mostly on the physical stuff but now its been 3 months and a little over 2 on these hormone replacement therapy patches and I needed to let it out.  This was my chance.  This was the time.

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I told her the truth. I felt emotionally fine.  I didn’t feel like I had gotten out of control these days.  However there are some days when I will get a rash, or itch so bad that I want to peel my own skin off.  The swelly belly and having to be super extra careful of what I consume is a lot. I feel like there is an inward pressure from myself to get my belly back down and hope it stays down.  This is an ongoing battle that NO ONE told me about when I talked about the surgery.  She smiled and gave me a hug.  She explained about the belly swells is my body’s way of saying cut back.  Not just on what I eat, but what I am doing.  Cut back.  She said that I have artificial hormones that is making me feel emotional even though I think I am fine.  The belly is not permanent.  The weight is not an issue.  She let me know that I am still healing.  In my head, I should be over this by now.  However sadly I am not.  She also let me know that the hormones is the culprit for the belly and that is normal to go up and down for about a year.  A year I really was hoping that was a myth that I heard about before.  But nope its like having a baby they say come back to work in 6-8 weeks but it can take up to a year to get your life back under control.

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So the student said he didn’t see that it was troubling me. He based that on the fact that the scale showed the great weight loss from the year before.  I talked to him about different cues he can take even from a difficult patient like I had been.  I told him scale victories are awesome but I am also looking for off scale victories too.  I met with my grumpy intruder that I had to set straight and they apologized to me.  Reality is they were dumping their issues on me like I was attempting to do in the doctor’s office.  The difference between me and the doctor is that the doctor’s office was a safe place and on me that could get you a two piece and a biscuit and I ain’t talking food.

I had to go home, not pick up the kids and get myself together. I went into full busy mode and finally I was able to relax.  I was able to get it together. I’m still going to continue to do all the things I have been doing.  But I guess I will have to be a little less strict on myself and let myself heal through the belly swell, and eventually all things will come into place.  So if you see me in the streets and my belly is a little big just smile don’t worry the next time you see me it may or may have decided to do its thing.  Who knows!

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8 Weeks: Gym didn’t kill me

Well the day has been rainy and I really wanted to just relax on my lunch break and that’s code for read magazines and eat.  However when I looked at my calendar and thanked the Lord for allowing me to finally get to 8 weeks post surgery, I got super excited. Then I got really sad when I saw I have less than a month to get in shape for a 5k and a walk that I have in the same weekend in September.  I started to get anxiety as if I wouldn’t be ready in time.  I decided that instead of worrying about it, it was time to get in the gym.  So I did and I didn’t die.

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I really wanted to wait until next week but then I thought about my whole mantra I have lived by which is not to put it off.  So I tied my hair until a bun, put my sweat bands on and headed in the rain to the gym.  The whole time I wanted to make a turn and roll out but I kept going.  At first I was super intimidated.  I was like girl you ain’t ready, just work on something productive and you will feel just as good.  Then I thought about today being national failures day and I was like naw, I got to keep on going.  I got in the gym and stretched and then got to work.  Let me say that I have done some exercises towards the end of my surgery but its a whole other ball game when you’re in the gym.  I wanted to take things slow but the reality is that even when I took sports in high school slow doesn’t always motivate me so I played a game with each song to push myself and change the intervals while doing cardio.  Until tomorrow with a new song line up, I can’t wait to crush it again.

So all in all I have to say I hope that getting back into the swing of things will boost my energy.  I have noticed that every 2 day I have to go to bed before 9pm.  I can’t go much longer than two days before I feel like someone hit me with a car even with taking all of my vitamins.  So maybe that will change but 2 months later a few weeks taking them and I am no longer on go all the time.  My hormones have finally leveled out.  The night sweats have decreased and so has the hot flashes.  That is a blessing let me tell you.  I still carry my fan with me I refuse to be out here and not prepared that’s for sure.

A lot of the issues that I had prior to surgery has gone away.  I am super happy to feel like I am a healthy woman again.  Finding out that a lot of this needed to be corrected years ago has been hard as I pushed to have these things done but not by the right doctor who would listen.  So now with the right doctors in place, life has gotten so much easier.

So I look forward to a few things.  As the year is in its last quarter or very close to it, I have some fitness goals yet to work on.

  1. Maintain my weight
  2. Ability to choose the costume for Halloween I want.  Last year although cute, I felt like an over sized Mario Brothers (female version) with sausage arms.
  3. Not look like I am the mini turkey for Thanksgiving (won’t see my sausage arms in this year’s pics)
  4. Get to the New Years with an awesome little number (dress) even if I don’t go anywhere.  You know if my husband and I don’t go out I throw a mean family party. I’ll be the flyest in-house mom ever.
  5. To be able to look back on this year and know my goal for 2018 won’t be to lose any weight but to maintain it.  You know the years prior I would make a goal and never work at it, never achieve it, but it was a “goal” I had in the back of my mind since surely my body didn’t do the work to get there.

So ladies and gentleman thank you all for rocking out with me during this hysterectomy journey.  All of the ups and downs have all been worth this moment of clarity and health. Be vigilant about your health and complete your goals!

Stress Awareness: Physical Stress

Stress as we discussed last week starts sometimes in the mind.  Going on and on for so long and not getting your mental health in check can lead to physical stress.  Physical stress is when your body becomes very reactive to the negativity that you in or are around.

Let me share with you how bad physical stress can be.  When I was in college I was obviously under a lot of stress to make sure my grades were good, I was dating my boyfriend and through immaturity we were that couple you never want to invite because were always fighting, and I was trying keep my parents at bay to the decisions in my life I was making.  This lead to one day me having the worst chest pains I had ever had.  I thought I was having a heartache.  I get to the hospital where they run all types of tests on me only to be cleared as one of the most healthiest the doctors had ever seen.  I was having an anxiety attack.  The anxiety attack started to mimic physical pain that wasn’t there.  If you have ever experienced an anxiety attack you know what I mean.

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Another time I experienced physical pain was when after graduating from college I had started a new job working with troubled youth. I enjoyed them but I didn’t have the life balance thing down.  I was underpaid and overworked.  There’s just no way of sugar-coating it.  There were long hours and long nights, lack of hanging with friends and family and stress was an understatement.  I was having so much pain that it felt like my stomach was in the worst pain in my life.  It was so bad the pain was so convincing that the doctors took my appendix out.  It was determined after it was out that my appendix was just fine and not in harm’s way to erupt.  Both times there were many things that could have been done to elevate the stress but I never caught on until the pain in my body could no longer be explained.  I had allowed stress to make me sick on top of it taking over my mind and thought process.

 

 

One of the things that I am learning is that even in the worst of situations its best to take care of your body. Remember stress can kill.  Even if things start in your mind and filter in your body, it can kill.  Balancing your world in a world that doesn’t know how to balance takes quite a lot of practice.  So when you are finding that those headaches and stomach-ache are not letting up, its time to call your doctor.  They are equipped to run test to be sure that everything is okay.  If the test show no reason as to why you are sick than its time to make some changes.

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  1. Get Physical-how does that make sense?  Being physical allows you to declutter your mind and keep your body in check.  Who wouldn’t to look good while keeping your stress levels down?  It only takes 30 minutes of physical activity a few times a week to do your body some good.  What are you waiting for?
  2. Eating Right-this is a huge help to your physical body.  Eating right helps your body respond at the top of your game.  To eat right takes discipline.  It takes preparation and having a plan.  If you’re not on board for doing a health kick, I would recommend arm yourself.  Have better snacks at your desk.  Pack your lunch. When there is no plan you will eat whatever is there just because you don’t have food to eat.  Start your day with breakfast.  Even if you aren’t a breakfast person, eat a cereal bar or granola in the am and then eat what I call a breakfast snack.  I usually eat 6 small meals a day.  This makes sure I am not hungry and will not need to go to that fast food place.  When you eat better, are full, you essentially make better eating options.
  3. Vitamins-talk to your doctor before you start taking vitamins.  Do NOT take things from others that are not approved by your doctor.  Your doctor knows what you need and you want to make sure you are operating at your prime

So we all know that we have to take care of ourselves.  We know that health is wealth. So if you don’t want to be the person who is sick all the time and unhealthy the time is now. We will be exploring a few options to make your physical stress disappear that can be both fun but health worthy.

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Keep your Hands to Yourself

So today while out grabbing breakfast before work I see a man shove a woman.  I am livid. A man comes from the middle of no where and grabs this young man up and inside I am happy.  A lot of men do not step up in these days not because they believe a woman should be hit but because these young idiots out here stay strapped.  Back in the days of my dad and grandfathers, men stepped up.  Yes there were men hitting their women but men didn’t sit idle and allow this mess to continue.

Last weekend I went out with my husband and his friends.  I had a really good time despite my initial apprehension.  None the less as I was coming back from the bathroom a man approaches a woman and out of no where this man punches this woman square in her face.  I moved back initially because I wasn’t sure what this man was going to do.  A man came out of no where again and punched the unsuspecting man dead in his face.  I was like go head and get em.  I applauded that man.  He didn’t have to come to her rescue but again it should never be okay to hit a woman regardless of the situation.  On the flip of that I don’t agree with women hitting men neither.  I have seen countless videos on social media where women are balling their fist up and hitting these women but then dying when that man hits back.  I don’t think as a woman I could take on a man and just flat-out win.  It would take a lot of effort.  But I don’t run up on none either.

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This is the day where women are more and more at risk for such violence and it’s getting to the point where it don’t have to be from a domestic dispute.  I just read a story where a woman asked a man in the store if he knew how to bake a pie and he leaves and comes back and knocks her out.  No one in the store stepped up  They sat there and just watched and filmed the whole thing.  The video I am sure will be great evidence later, but how about rendering aid?  No?! Where do they do this mess?  Like I am really trying to find a reason and I am coming up blank.  Like I am the type of women that has way too many men that would stand up for me.  My husband, my dad, grandfather, just too many men that have been outstanding in my life to think that this is how you treat a woman.  It’s not.

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Ladies violence is wrong.  If you are in a situation where you think this is love, we got some talking to do.  I know it starts off as mental abuse first before they graduate to physical abuse. This is why I advocate for women to get their stuff together before you link up with someone.  Men need to do the same quiet as its kept. Some of the things that are in your past lies dormant until you link up with another person or have a child.  It’s important to be whole in your mind, body, and spirit.

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To the men that think this makes you a man, I am a woman and can’t tell you what it takes to be a man but in the eyes of women and most men this is definitely not a requirement. You are put here to protect women, all women.  Not to put your hands on them.  Do you realize that the woman you hit is someone’s daughter, mother, sister, etc?  What happens when you have a little girl and she’s watched you batter her mother?  She thinks its okay. I watched another video on social media where a man had an actual leash on a woman and paraded her through the block calling her a bitch.  She smiling thinking to herself I am sure that at least she got a man.  A man that walks you around calling you a bitch with a leash would have gotten his ass beat by my dad and thats real.  Matter of fact my dad might have gotten me too if I allowed it.  That is crazy.

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Walk away. Get some help. But it won’t be until you run up against another man that makes you accountable that you will see the error of your ways.  Or you must have that woman you beat get enough strength to realize she don’t need your sorry ass then the power you had on her will be gone too.  It’s easy to hit someone who isn’t a worthy opponent.  Please evaluate yourself.

What irks me is the men who don’t have the good sense God gave you.  Back in the day women were being beat and hiding behind black eyes,sunglasses, and makeup.  Now y’all bringing behind the scenes beatings to the street.  It don’t make no sense in this day of camera phones but what do I know. I am not advocating for you to take it back in the house either.  I am simply saying you have to be special kind of special to do it with witnesses.

Soul Cycle Survivor

Yes I said Soul Cycle survivor.  Even as my adrenaline has calmed down, I’m writing this blog on two very sore booty cheeks.  When I say sore everything  I really mean it.  Not a part of my body has been left untouched. I think they mean Soul Cycle to really mean they taking you to the ground and bringing it back.  Who knows, right?

When I walked in at the Ardmore location, I was immediately impressed and a bit intimidated.  There were people buzzing around getting signed in.  What I liked was the girls registering us was so used to it and spotted the unregistered and helped me along.  She explained what I was to expect and everything she said was true.

I went and found me a locker, grabbed my water, and put on my cycle shoes provided to me.  I felt great at this point.  Let me say the Ardmore location is beautiful.  Okay as I entered the room that was getting dark, one of the workers helped me right to my assigned seat.  The last time I was in an assigned seat was in elementary school.  The Soul worker helped me click my shoe into place.  You ever watch a prison movie when the doors slam and you hear that click? Yes that was me.  Take a second and visualize that with me.  The sound made me want to roll but to be honest if I wanted to I couldn’t figure out how to get them shoes off even after it was over.  There was no point of return, I was stuck.

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So if you ever seen a cycle class online when you see the cyclers in formation getting it? Well it’s just like that but what makes you get your life right in those moments is the energy of the instructor.  Shout out to Ryan as he came with his A game.  The music was another level today.  At the time when Jayz came on it felt like I too had channeled all that Hova had to get me to the next part of the workout.  Then I don’t know if it was because Beyonce is going to be in concert here in Philly or not but we went right into Bootylicious and it was on.

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That workout isn’t for punks but even if you we’re a newbie like me you don’t have to fret.  The bike was your archenemy for about 45 minutes of an  intense gut punching workout.  So I couldn’t ignore it even if I wanted to.  Now let me give you a few tips so you won’t be too much like a fish out of water like I was.

1. Arrive early.  Don’t do like me and arrive all fashionably late.  By the way I wasn’t trying to be late but that’s just how it worked out.  Also if you’re not on time they are starting with or without you but would prefer for you to be time.  Plus anxiety will set in.

2. Stretch before you come.  It helps to get your muscles ready.

3. Hydration is key.  The amount of sweat that you expel is enough to clean a little baby in a tub.  No joke.  Ryan had all kinds of sweat under his bike like the rest of us.  Hydrate almost a good solid 24 hours before class if you don’t you will regret it.  Had I not, someone would be picking me up off the floor after they wrangled me out my shoes.

4. Enjoy it.  Yes I wanted to throw up the deuces but we were all there together and working it out.  I didn’t know many in the room but by the end I felt like I had gotten everyone’s social security number, we we’re a family.  Family sticks together and we had fought little Ray-Ray a few times around the block today.

5. Try it at least once.  I know we as people don’t like to try new things but this is a must.  Its fun and if you are looking for a real workout, this is the one to be at.

6. There is a waiver.  Duh.  They don’t want you coming back talking about they responsible for your arm and legs actually failing off.

7. Know your limitations.  I kept moving even when I had to sit and just move my legs.  I had my left shoulder dislocated a few years back.  I’m aware of what will cause pain or further injury but I didn’t let it stop me.  If I could have found a way to use that same arm to detach my foot from that bike, I may have.  Shout out to Jon the brother of Alanda Cocoamommy blog she arranged this opportunity and he kept me grounded.

8. Go with at least one person you know.  I didn’t know Jon before but I knew he was good people and he pushed me when he saw me slacking.  It was even more fun because when I yelled out yes God he understood. I told you the workout was intense so I may have called out to a few angels to come and get me a few times. Judge me but do it after you take a class.

9. You will not be cute during the class. So leave the make up and tie down your natural, weaves, or frontals.  Yes I know you trying to scoop a cutie on bike 4, but you walking out worst than you came in.  Get cute after.  No one and I mean no one is looking at you when Ryan starts counting down.  Trust and believe.

10. Wear the right clothes. Ladies no your Vicky bra ain’t ready for spin class.  Let me repeat that Vicky needs to stay home.  Get you a good sports bra.  You should be working out with a good sports bra anyway.  So unless you got the new sports bra from Vicky, leave the lace and frills at home.  Dress like you came to work out not you came to take selfies.  You won’t have time to grab your water bottle barely let alone become the next Instagram model.  Trust me.

Overall I really enjoyed the class.  I definitely can cross this off of my list of workouts to try. I’ve been eyeing Soul
Cycle for quite some time.  Again I want to shout out Soul Cycle, their happy, pleasant staff, Alanda for setting this opportunity up, Jon for pushing me, and my little 45 minute villagers for taking the 1145 class today.

If you are interested in seeing what all of my hoopla was about come to

Soul Cycle
2 Coulter Ave
Ardmore, PA 19003

Oh and one more thing about the actual building.  It sits inside of the Ardmore shopping complex.  Parking is across the street and it’s free.  If you want to shower or clean yourself up like I did the facility is clean and very eye-catching.  You ever go to your girlfriend’s house and forget a few items? Soul Cycle is like being at your friend’s house.  In the shower area they had towels, face wash, body wash, shampoo, and conditioner in every shower area.  They also have recycled take home bags to put your wet soaked clothes in for a good wash when you get home.  I know there are plenty who get frazzled at showering at public places but trust me this was more like showering at a high-end hotel. I was more than pleasantly surprised with my germaphobic self.

Here is the link to their website: http://www.soul-cycle.com

You can select a class, and reserve a bicycle of your choice.

If and when you take one then let me know.  Until then Epsom salt, yogurt with granola, a wheel chair and some relaxation and down time are in my immediate future.