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Posts Tagged ‘The Gym’

Dear Friends and Family:

It’s Jan. 2. People have already broken resolutions, or never made any to begin with.

I don’t usually make resolutions, as you know. If I decide to do something, I just do it. No need to wait until the new year.

This year, I’m declaring things I WON’T do:

  • Keep makeup I don’t wear. Coral lipstick is not for pale people like me, and frosty pink is for preteens.
  • Retain books on my Kindle I won’t read. “A Supposedly Fun Thing I’ll Never Do Again: Essays and Arguments” by David Foster Wallace is a supposedly fun read that is not. Byeeee!
  • Put up with less than I need/deserve/worked for, etc. I am not a “Welcome!” mat.
  • Save money. Yeah, I know I should, but let’s be honest: I won’t.

  • Stay home. I want to say “absof–kinlutely” to adventures near and far. Dream scenario: I get paid to write about it.
  • Continue procrastinating on my book. This is the year I finish it, write the proposal, and find an agent. If E.L. James can become rich and famous off her trash Twilight fan fiction work, so can I.
  • Lose more than just five more pounds. I’m calling that my “wine cushion.”
  • Stay in this place with the small kitchen. When it’s a pain to make things as fairly easy as Scotch eggs, it’s time to upgrade.

  • Ignore show suggestions from certain like-minded people. I resisted watching “Killing Eve.” I was stupid.
  • Let people try to make me feel even slightly embarrassed about my love of bad taxidermy. Those uptight people can shove it. My obsession is Hando approved.
  • Vote for Trump. Duh.
  • Stop writing blog posts at least twice a week. I’ve been keeping this pace since April, so I’m pretty proud of myself.

What are your anti-resolutions? Tell me in the comments.

Love and kisses,
Beth

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Dear Students,

I love many parts of my job, but I like teaching you the most. When the semester is over, I’m actually sad (not relieved as many academic types are).

Public Speaking may be my favorite course to teach for three reasons:

  1. I get to know you extremely well through the topics you choose.
  2. You show a large amount of growth in a short amount of time. Each of you improves.
  3. I end up learning plenty.

In fact, this semester, I learned about child labor in smartphone construction, conspiracy theories about Kurt Cobain’s death, the House of Chanel, Chris Jericho’s career, and why you should exercise 5-6 times a week for 30 minutes (as opposed to 3 times a week for an hour, which is my routine at the moment).

I’ve written about student evaluations before, but here’s a recap: It is a little scary for me. There’s always someone who hates me and/or the class. But then I get feedback like this, and it takes out the sting:

(And her heart grew three sizes that day.)

Remember that I’m here for you long after the class ends. Yes, you have to climb a few flights of stairs to see me, but I’m also just a quick email away.

Best wishes,
Dr. Beth

 

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Dear Beth D., my supportive health coach:

Now that I’ve reached my goal weight, we don’t chat very much. Just know that I’m not going to be satisfied until I lose six more pounds. That’s what it will take to get to the weight my driver’s license says I am.

I am satisfied with my progress, though.

Here are three recent events that filled me with glee and a sense of accomplishment.

1. Today I am wearing very special boots.

I’m not just channeling Scrooge McDuck. I’m bringing back Fall 2011. That’s when I bought these boots in Paris. They were aspirational boots as the tongue and laces didn’t quite cover my fat calves.

But I loved them, and I knew SOME DAY I would be able to wear them. Today is that day.

2. Eddie took Dominic clothes shopping because the kid has the nerve to keep growing. He did the requisite fashion show when he got home.

I especially liked one pair of jeans that he bought. I threatened to steal them.

Him: I know you’ve lost weight, but you can’t fit into my jeans.
Me: Wanna bet?
Him: Mama, they won’t fit you. They barely fit me.
Me: Let’s see.

I proceed to wriggle into his jeans. To my delight — and his consternation — they fit.

Me: See! Now say you were wrong.
Him: I’m not saying anything. I’m mad right now.
Me: Mad because you were wrong?
Him: Maybe.

I knew they would fit because of Event No. 3.

3. Usually Eddie and I do our laundry, and let the kids do their own. Sometimes to top off a load, I will grab some of their clothes. This leads to a rousing game of Whose Pants Are These?

These jeans belong to Dominic, Gideon and me. Can you guess which pair belongs to whom? The answer is at the bottom of this post.

I put on a pair of jeans I thought were mine, but were actually Dominic’s.

It was kind of a big deal for me.

Keep in mind I’ve carried around extra weight since I carried around Dominic.

The three events above would not have been possible without your support and encouragement.

I thank you (even if Dominic doesn’t).

Talk to you in six pounds,
A Lighter Beth

Whose Pants Are These?: (l to r) Mine, Dominic’s, Gideon’s

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Dear Readers:

Y’all know I love to have a post from a guest blogger. Today I have for your reading pleasure a post from Eddie. I dragged him to my Biddy Boot Camp. Here is his report.

Love,
Beth

Trying not to drown: My experience with Beth’s Biddies
By Eddie C.

Beth invited me to attend her pool aerobics class, and so I did. When we walked in, the grannies were already in the pool. We are not young, but were by far the youngest people there. Beth instructed me to get a waist thingy, and strap it on. (Note from Beth: He’s talking about an Aquajogger.)

I felt super self conscious because they were all staring at me. I think two people had worn my belt before as I had to make a major adjustment to the strap. I climbed into the pool, and the ladies were very welcoming. One lady in particular took an interest in me. She started giving me pointers:

If you push against the water as hard as you can, you will get a great workout. Trust me. My obese ex-husband tried this, and he was red and dying. He never came back!

My main thought was this:

If I’m dying, Beth better beat all these old bitches to my body to give me CPR. If I wake up, and it’s not her, I’m gonna be pissed!

The class begins, and I can best describe the movement as swirls and kicking. (Note from Beth: It’s just jogging.) I feel strange because I can’t seem to get the movements to look or feel smooth like everyone else in the class. The instructor looks at me, and I smile. She smiles back and says:

He’s giving me the courtesy smile.

Then I hear this:

Old Lady No. 1: He won’t be smiling for long!

Old Lady No. 2: Yeah! In about two minutes!

Damn! What happened to the sweet old ladies?! It was clear that there would be no friends in the pool; I was on my own. Not even Beth was making eye contact. (Note from Beth: Nope. I’m there to work, not socialize. You all know this.)

Things got heated up when we were instructed to touch our toes with our hands. I wanted to ask:

How the hell do we do that and stay afloat?

But without missing a beat, they all started doing it! Lucky for me, I had a secret weapon. I am 6’4” and could still touch the pool floor. Even with this super power, I could not even come close to doing it right. In fact, I was a rhythm-less freak. I could not sync my arms and my legs to save my life. I thought:

This must be the way white people feel when they try to dance salsa.

After what seemed like forever of “Let’s watch this big doofus try this,” the instructor announced that we had Tabata coming up next. I don’t know who this Tabata dude is, but he is not my friend! Plus, she started bringing out the foamy weight things, and I started to panic:

Crap! The burn is coming, and I just spent an hour trying to touch my toes gracefully!

The one thing in my favor was the water. No one could see me sweat.

Now, the way a Tabata works is you do 20 seconds on and 10 seconds off.

HOWEVER, if you are in the water, trying not to drown, there is no off time. So, you have to tread water instead of being still and “resting.”  How these ladies can do all these moves and never move from the spot, I have no freakin’ idea! I was all over the damn pool. I was all on top of folks. I would have to pause and use the floor to push myself back to my original spot. “I’m sorry! Excuse me!” is all I seemed to be saying the whole time.

At one point, I look over at Beth, and she was going so freakin’ fast. I was like:

How the hell is she going so damn fast without going head first into the water?!

I tried to match her, and I could not. She was doing a sprint, and I was well … not so much. At one point, it turned into a participants’ choice Tabata. I stuck to stay alive and afloat. I look over, and I promise you I wish I had my phone for video. The move that Beth chose is a familiar move to me but it’s called a parallette, and it’s done on the ground.

I was like WTF?! I have zero chance at that.

Finally, that part was over, and we put our weights on the edge of the pool. But that’s not all. The instructor gave us all a noodle: There was more burn to follow. We had to kick our legs back, get on top of the noodle with our arms (like a push-up) and press it down and up into the water one hundred billion times.

Next, circles with the noodle in the water and then reverse. At this point, I just closed my eyes. I couldn’t see a damn thing anyway, because the reverse circle dumps all the water in your face. You better figure out when to breathe.

I believe this is the point where most people drown.

We then had to straddle as if it were some kind of seahorse and paddle with our hands up all around the pool. (Note from Beth: He does not mean “paddle.” He means “bicycle.”)

I knew this had to be close to the end. Why? Suddenly as I was passing ladies on my paddling extravaganza, they became nice old ladies again.

Thanks for joining us.

Please, come back again.

Finally we put the noodles up on the edge and begin our stretches. I could not enjoy the stretch because all I could think about was peeing.

So my advice if you are going to join these warriors:

  1. Don’t think for one second that you are going to out-do them.
  2. Check your ego, or they will check it for you.
  3. Pee before you go.

Thank you to these wonderful, beautiful ladies for having me.

He lived, see?!

Pruney as he was.

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Dear Goat Yoga Lisa,

Thanks for asking about my progress with my biddy boot camp. The ladies have accepted me fully. So much so that I was actually sad last Friday when I was the only one there.

(The benefit of that was that I got a personal training session with taskmaster Christina. She blasted AC/DC, and made me work harder than I’ve ever worked in the pool.)

This past Friday, everyone was back and ready for action. My two favorites were there: June and Jamie.

June was the first to welcome me into the pack. She has advanced MS. She also is the cheeriest, most optimistic person. Definitely Glass Half Full. She makes me laugh every time we’re in the class together.

Jamie is her opposite. She’s Glass Half Empty, but I love her too. She also makes me laugh because she bitches about every single exercise.

And as it turns out, Enis (the Alpha Female) is quite nice.

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Not sure where Kim was Friday. She’s also nice, in a backhanded way.

I’ll give you an example of what I mean. Christina recommended I buy a special bathing suit because the chlorine kept destroying my cute ones.

Kim overheard:

“I got mine at Swim and Sweat. You and I probably wear the same size. Here, look at my tag!”

Her tag turned out to be in a place I wasn’t about to check out. So she said she’d email me.

To my surprise, she did. I was also surprised that I’m two sizes smaller than she is.

She closed with this line:

“You seemed long waisted like myself, and this suit was good for that.”

I’ve never in my life considered myself long waisted.

Eddie said it’s just because she couldn’t wear her glasses in the pool.

Still, she meant well and my new suit arrived this weekend.

The great thing about the Friday and Tuesday classes is that these ladies are here to WORK. Not like Sunday’s class. That’s the convo class.

So there you have it: an update on the pool ladies.

Now I want you to go to horse yoga, and report back.

Love you!
Beth

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Dear Body Fat:

I’m definitely in a period of change, ditching all that isn’t working for me. (Poor Adam.)

You were the first to go exactly a year ago. I don’t miss you at all. Sorry, not sorry.

You and I had an off-again, on-again relationship for years before I had the strength to shed you for good.

Without you, I’m a new person. I’m brave enough to share a bikini photo with the world (even though selecting “publish” on that post nearly made me barf).

I say “the world” because it’s a public post on the Internet. The true number is actually 720.

(Oof. That’s so many people online to have seen me in my bathing suit. Pardon me while I get sick in this trash can over here.)

People have noticed we’re not together anymore.

Just over a week ago, I had a chat with Disgruntled Danny, he of the pothole guest post, at a Jesse’s Divide event. (Yes, yet another mention of this band. Again, sorry, not sorry. They’re that good.)

This exchange happened early on in the convo:

Him, ever so British: May I ask you a personal question?

Me, completely American: Sure! Ask away!

Him: Where is the rest of you?

Along with breaking up with you, I’ve also broken up with all your best friends: self consciousness, anxiety, high cholesterol, all my large clothes and snoring.

I’m totally OK with that. You and your awful buddies drove me crazy.

Yes, I know you saw the things I ate while in England, including this:

Fish, chips and mushy peas? Sign me up!

But an occasional meal like that does not mean I’m welcoming you back into my life.

In fact, just the opposite. I’m now seeing plenty of the Gym. We’re very happy together. The Gym has friends like abs (haven’t seen them in SO LONG — see poster above), developed triceps, endorphins and workout soreness. They are all much cooler than your friends.

So stop trying to worm your way back into my life.

It’s over.

For real.

Regards,
Beth

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I’m about to do something I’ve never done. See below. (And I’m not sure why my hair looks gray on top. It’s not.)

Dear Ladies and Gentlemen on the Weight Struggle Bus:

I know your pain. I was with you in more than spirit a year ago. As a reminder, here’s a photo from Trish the Human’s wedding on Sept. 9 last year:

I cringe when I see that photo. I’m clearly trying — and failing — to hide behind Dominic.

Here’s a photo from a year earlier:

Notice the body language. (I’d say to notice the dark, slimming colors, but I wear black despite how much of me there is.)

I was MISERABLE. How to hide in photos was the least of my worries.

Bigger worries:

  • High cholesterol
  • Inability to give campus tours without getting out of breath (especially up one particular hill)
  • Ridiculous amount of self consciousness
  • Negative self talk
  • Wardrobe reduced by 80 percent
  • Snoring
  • Sleeping even less than I do now
  • Hot all the damn time

I’ve shared with you my turning point. It’s different for everyone, but let me say this about that:

It is NEVER going to get easier.

There is no magic pill.

Surgery can be a fix for some but still requires changes in eating habits.

You have to decide you are going to do something about your health. Then DO IT.

The program I chose worked for me*, but may not work for you.

Despite the fact that I’m married to someone in the CrossFit Cult (or maybe, actually, BECAUSE of that), I hate exercising. I lost almost 50 pounds by controlling what went in my piehole.

Now that I’ve lost the weight, I go to the gym three times a week for my Biddy Boot Camp.

I hit my goal weight in April, and I have maintained it with very little effort.

I FEEL GREAT!

That’s what I say to anyone who will listen. People not even living with me notice the difference.

To that end, I’m going to do something I’ve never, ever done — and never would have done if I hadn’t lost the weight: Publicly post a bikini pic. No filter. No cropping. No Photoshop.

Here we go.

I know I still have some work to do, but I feel more confident than I have in more than 15 years. I’m brave enough to take and share this photo, anyway.

And if this move inspires even ONE of you to make a change for your sake and for the sake of your family, then my nervousness at doing it will have been worth it.

If I can do it, you can too. I believe in you.

Love and all my best wishes for a healthier you,
Beth

 

* Eddie is now a coach in the program. Send me a message if you want me to hook you up.

 

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