None for me, thanks

A woman in my office today was making chit-chat during lunch. “What do you do here, how old are you, are you married, do you want to be, do you want kids?” She damn-near fell off the chair when I decidedly told her, “No, I don’t want children. I don’t like them.”

“Well, why not?” she asked, as if my gender means I am predisposed to the motherhood gene. I gathered my thoughts for a moment and told her “I’m just not sure that a future filled with diapers, late nights, PTA meetings, scraped knees, children’s homework, and play dates really appeal to me.” She promptly turned back to her iced tea and salad.

Does being a woman automatically make me a mother? I’m already a mother to a 2-year-old Maine Coon cat. Isn’t that enough? Later on, I started thinking about what might happen if my boyfriend and I do get our act together and settle down. I don’t know that I have the wife gene either. What if settling isn’t actually what I want? What if that’s just the lie I have been telling myself because it’s expected of me?

Even if the ring is never on the table, how do you know when you’re ready to trade in girlfriend for wife and mother?

 

Fitness Adventures: Week 1

This week I decided to re-launch my fitness initiatives. I am really making an effort to get healthier and find the less chubby girl inside of me. I’m not on a mission to become stick-thin. However, I would at least like to be able to buy smaller jeans by Christmas. My pants size has slowly increased over the last 5 years. I’ve been a size 20 since the end of high school, although I did not fully embrace and purchase the size until college, I have been a size 20 for a long time.

I came up with a game plan, and I’m going to take my time completely surrendering to this process – this life change. I’ve discovered that my heart rate spikes WAY too quickly too early on in a workout, and while I acknowledge that I should see a doctor, I really don’t like them so I will go when I am ready. For now, I have devised a plan to try and manage on my own. I wear my Fitbit religiously, and I am always monitoring the readings when I am walking, sitting around the house when I am about to fall asleep – steadily! Even if it isn’t the most accurate reading, at least I am paying attention. So, what did I do for my first week?

Goals:

Current Weight – 275        Goal Weight – 165

Current Cardio Fitness Score – 21-25 (Poor)     Goal Score – 31.2-35.9 (Fair)

Week 1:

Get to the gym at least 3 days a week and do (minimum) 10 minutes of cardio.

I have had a Black Card Planet Fitness membership for two years, and it’s the best $20 that I could ever spend. I love to go to different locations for my workout, and I can bring a guest – which typically means either my sister or my grandfather.

So far, I have been to 8 different Planet Fitness locations, between 2 states. During my time living in Connecticut, I was a member of the Amity location. It’s really spacious, clean, and the lockers are super modern and can fit much larger bags. While it did take some effort to get there, it was always worth the trip. I highly recommend this location to New Haven residents.

Inside New York City, I have taken quite the tour: Tribeca, 14th street, Chelsea, Canal Street, and Columbus Circle. Out of all of these, I would have to say that the one in Chelsea (27th street) is my favorite so far. It’s off-the-beaten-path it seems so it doesn’t have too much traffic when I am leaving work. The 35th street location is overcrowded and dangerous sometimes. How can I safely use the elliptical with muscle-bound men using the free weights right behind me or next to me? I can’t…so, I won’t. The Tribeca and Canal Street locations are excellent, but they are far from my current office. I only went to the 14th street location once, and I honestly can’t say I remember my experience so clearly nothing went horribly wrong. Same for Columbus Circle, although, I do remember that that location was impossible to get to from where the subway stops.

I am kind of addicted to making my body sweat as much as possible when I am working out because releasing those toxins really helps with my anxiety and depression, but they are bad for my heart it appears. Since discovering that my heart rate jumps so quickly, I have been conscientious about just how hard I push myself at the gym, and all I want to do is go faster. It turns out that the best way to improve my cardio fitness is by doing more cardio.  Oh, the irony!

My compromise, with myself, has been that I can keep using the Elliptical Machines (my second favorite type of cardio), BUT I have to actually use the settings and listen to the machine when it says I need to slow down. I also practice deep breathing while I am on there because I have learned that I am afraid to breathe? One night at the gym I noticed that I hesitate to let anyone see that I am breathing hard while working out. It’s bizarre, but that’s just where we are. Haha!

Re-fill the water bottle at least 3 times.

I have one of those fancy re-fillable water bottles (BPA free) from my undergrad years, and I love carrying it around with me. It’s a little more than 28 fluid ounces, and it’s absolutely perfect for me! I read on this chart somewhere once that based on my weight (275 lbs), I should be drinking 142 fluid ounces of water a day, but that just seems inaccurate. I think drinking the 84 fluid ounces a day will be just fine. Is that too much as well? What’s the right amount? Can anyone tell me?

Log everything that I eat into MyFitnessPal.

I absolutely swear by the app, MyFitnessPal. It keeps me honest, and I can even connect it to my Fitbit’s app, so everything is all synced up together. It’s so great, and I definitely recommend it to all who are looking for a great meal/workout tracking system. I say it keeps me honest because it feels like I am writing it into my diary. No one knows what I ate, except for me. The only judge I answer to is myself, and I can effectively see the breakdown of what I have eaten and how it affects my exercise.

Week 2 Previews

  • Planet Fitness (normal gym) cardio on Monday
  • Kickboxing – TBD, since I confused the date of my first lesson and now need to call to reschedule.
  • Drinking water always

In my eyes, week 1 was a major success! It takes about 21 days to fully embrace a new habit, but I think I did very well so far. I went to the gym on Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday. I drank 64 fluid ounces of water on Wednesday, and I have learned to embrace yogurt and granola (all healthy and natural, with some help from my momma!)

I’ll see you all next time! Feel free to leave comments, questions, and all helpful bits of fitness advice for a novice!