Tag Archives: switches

Accountability in my pants

Hey, remember that time I was going to blog about making monthly changes in my life as a way to chronicle the lead up to the end of the world?

Shut up.

So things haven’t gone the way I initially had hoped, that is clear, but as I look back over the last 4 (!?!) months, they really haven’t been a total wash. To be honest, the only part that hasn’t worked out in this blogging experiment is, well, the blogging.

I have managed to maintain regular gym attendance; I have been eating healthier, and above all, I am a lot happier than I was when I set out on this quest. True, I’ve made some mistakes. Ok, I’ve made A LOT of mistakes, and I’m nowhere near as settled with the first three life switches as I had anticipated, but I am able to see where I exactly went careening into a ditch of failure, and much like Aaliyah, I have the desire to dust myself off and try again (wait, she’s….oh).

Here’s the thing, in order for this blog to even come close to accomplishing my drunken schemes, I obviously need to post more than once a month. I am going to need to actually chronicle the changes I have been making, and not just post a quarterly, “could we start again, please” check in.

Sigh. In order to do this, I am going to have to do something I didn’t want; something that is against my very nature.

I am going to have to keep…a schedule.

(Blood curdling scream)

As horrifying as it sounds to my, “all clocks should be taken out back and shot” sensibilities, the only way I am going to save this project from becoming just another pathetic, abandoned web-relic, is by creating a routine. I am going to have to stick to that routine, and as an added flame under my ass, I am going to have to disclose said routine. That way, all four of you bitches know what to expect, and you can call my lame ass out when you don’t get it.

So here it goes. I had originally set out to accomplish 12 life switches; one for each month left on earth before the dinosaurs come back and kill everyone except for Kirk Cameron and the founding family of the Westboro Baptist Church. In my mind (and on paper, even) I had all 12 of these worked out well before I hit “publish” on my first post. Obviously, we are 4 months in, so some modifications had to be made.

Moving forward, here is my plan. Much like the opinions of a certain presumptive presidential hopeful,

this plan is “etched” permanently in the paramagnetic particles of a baby boomer’s childhood toy.

Remaining Life Switches

April 19th until May 9th: Study and implement a more minimalist practice and lifestyle.

May 10th until May 31st:  21 Day detox. Why 21 days? Fuck you, that’s why.

Truth be told, I’ve done some pre-research (presearch?) on this, and after combing through several detox plans, the one I opted for seemed like it would least likely lead me to kill my entire family and everyone within a 30 mile radius. Take a moment to check it out. Who knows, you may want to take the journey with me!

I’ll also be taking the time to study vegan cooking and practice recipes to add to my repertoire.

June: Using what I learned in May about vegan cooking, put together an entire meal plan for the month. Additionally, build off of April’s minimalism by spending no money. Seek out free entertainment, drink at home with friends, catch up on reading and time with family.

July: Working off of June, continue to build and maintain my relationships with my chosen family. Celebrate my 6th year of marriage by having lots of sex (I’m sure y’all are going to LOVE reading about that!)

 August: Take the last month of summer to reconnect with my childhood through my daughter, commune with nature. Limit time indoors and online. Slow down.

 September: While my husband and daughter head back to school, my education will come from reading at least one book a week.

 October: As if turning 33 wasn’t scary enough, I am going to use this month to constantly push my limits, step out of my comfort zone, and maybe even perform again.

 November: To prepare for the holidays, another detox is in order. This one however will involve working on my mental toxins as well as my physical body.

 December: Most people turn to religion at the end of their life, so with 21 days remaining until the zombie apocalypse, I am going to use this time to explore and experience various religions.

Ta-da. 8 ½ months of self-discovery and change all laid out for you to scrutinize.

Now, for the posting schedule, that is going to change SLIGHTLY each month. What won’t change is the amount of posts or which days. The topics however, will obviously change depending on the month’s switch. Regardless of the topic, you can expect a post from me on Monday, Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday.

For example, for the remaining 3 hours in April, I will adhere to the following schedule*:

 Monday: A recap of the weekend and where my adventures in minimalism took me.

Wednesday: What I am learning; thoughts and feelings about minimalist literature, blogs, etc.

Thursday: Mid-week minimalism; some minimalist action I took that day.

Friday: Free for all; check in on other switches I have turned on, random posts about life, or photos of drag queens.

There you have it, a solid framework sure to catapult this blog into an almost mediocre success. All of the pieces are laid out for me, now I just have to actually follow through.

Piece of cake.

No really, shut up.

*Obviously this will begin full-force next week, since it’s already, you know…Thursday.


The February of it All.

STOP MOCKING ME, calendar.

I hate February. I hate that it’s (usually) cold. I hate that it’s dark. I hate that no one can pronounce it correctly and that I feel like a freak when I do (it’s FebRUary, not FebUary, OK, bitches?)

Mostly, I hate the sense of utter despair that the month usually signifies. (I also hate that I dropped the “H” word like eleventy-billion times in this first paragraph. As a proponent of social justice and mom who constantly says, “That’s a strong word,” I need to check myself.)

Seriously though, FebRUary is cruel bitch. She tests your limits, and most of us don’t even have a number 2 pencil.

At this point in the year, we should be well on our way to being the change we saw at the bottom of our flute of Taittinger on 12/31. Our bad habits are bad memories, and our fitter, stronger, happier, more productive (robotic-sounding) selves are…fitter, stronger, happ…you get the point.

Damn you, italics and your emPHAsis of doom.

Yes, if we’ve all stuck to our resolutions up to this point, we should be over the 30-day hump and enjoying the fruits of our labor. Actions that seemed almost impossible only a month ago should be becoming second nature. Life is indeed going our way, and the best part about it…it’s ONLY FebRUary.

Wait. Only FebRUary!?! You mean I have to keep this ish up for the next 10 months!?!

Fuck me running…I’m tired of running!

Burnout.

Burning out is very possible in the month of FebRUary. See, everything was new in January. It was a challenge to be met, an adventure to behold. It was exciting and you were determined to NOT be one of those pathetic people who gave up on their resolution 2 weeks into the New Year.

When FebRUary first rolled around, you felt accomplished, maybe a little self-satisfied. YOU went to the gym almost every morning and saw people slowly start to drop off. YOU haven’t had one cigarette, even after you lost your job/significant other/home/best friend/cat. YOU haven’t had any sugar. YOU have been getting at least 8 hours of sleep a night. YOU have refrained from killing since the end of last year.

Get over yourself.

YOU are golden. You so got this.

Until you realize that you don’t.

January was the honeymoon…FebRUary is the marriage. The long, day-to-day, monotonous, Nathan Lane crooning “Is That All There Is” in his most nasally, Jewiest of voices, “RESTOFYOURLIFE” kind of marriage.

It’s the recognition of that awesome thing you’ve been doing, well it’s still kind of cool, but you have to keep doing it…all the time.

In FebRUary, shit gets real. Most people won’t survive. They won’t completely give up, though. No, it will be a slow death throughout the short month.

Excuses will be made.

Poor decisions will become more regular.

Soon old habits will rear their ugly head, and the progress of January will fade faster than Nathan Lane’s appeal as a performer (it’s all I got right now).

Yup...that's all there is.

It doesn’t have to be like this. Like any marriage, the trick is to keep it fresh.

Bring a friend into the picture (wait, what?) You know…to workout with.

Change up your routine. Try something new.

Above all, recognize that perfect is an absolute that only airbrushing and anorexia can attain. Mistakes will happen, but they don’t have to be the death of your success.

Like most marital missteps, they can leave you feeling stronger, more connected, and back on the road to blissville.  (Pause to wipe the vomit from my keyboard.)

So as this short month rages on, don’t let the daunting prospect of having to keep your new life switches turned on indefinitely let you down. Continue to take things one day at a time (ba, ba, da, da) and it will be March before you know it, Ann Romano.

You have NO IDEA who this is, do you?

Long. Cold. March.

Meanwhile, how am I doing with my life switches? Ha. That’ll be the topic for my next post, “WHY THE FUCK DID I THINK IT WAS A GOOD IDEA TO CHRONICLE A YEARS WORTH OF RESOLUTIONS ON THE WORLD WIDE FUCKING WEB, and other assorted tales.”

Stay tuned. If anything, it’s guaranteed to make you feel good about your own pathetic existence!

You’re welcome.

 

 

 


The Oracle of Denim

As the calendar creeps slowly toward the middle of the first month of the year, it’s time to get serious about these resolutions. The end of the world is nigh, bitches, no time to dawdle.

Before we begin, I actually want to say a little something about the word “resolutions.” I generally hate the term. I don’t know (nor do I want to take the time to research) when it became necessary to cast a dark shadow over your New Year’s Eve drunk with the idea that come the following morning YOU MUST CHANGE YOUR LIFE.

Don’t get me wrong, I understand the symbolism. “New Year…New You.” The concept was just made for marketing gym memberships and Jenny Craig dinners. What most of us fail to recognize is that every day we are fortunate enough to open our eyes, we are offered the opportunity for change. It’s just a question of turning on our desire to do so.

Therefore, going forward I won’t be referring to my 12 changes as “resolutions,” or “commitments,” “promises,” “pledges” or friggin “intentions.”

I will be referring to the changes I am making as “switches.” To me, making a change can be as easy as illuminating a room…you just have to flip a switch to turn on the light.

One simple action is all that it takes (how is that for some new agey, self-help bullshit!?!)

My first “life switch” is to get back into the gym schedule I was rocking when my body didn’t feel like a pair of opaque tights filled with warm pudding.

At my height I was doing at least 5 hours of serious cardio a week, plus 2 to 3 strength-training sessions at 45 minutes, and rounding out the insanity with roughly 3 yoga or pilates sessions a week.

A week.

Then I quit my job and no longer had the luxury of spending eleventy billion dollars to feel inadequate and unattractive in a room full of metal, machinery, finance douchebags, and the communication majors who love them. For quite sometime I was able to stay somewhat in shape by working out in my apartment and running through town.

The spiral of shame began when I started graduate school. My days were no longer my own. Eating healthy, if at all, became a problem for me. My home workouts ended when my family and I moved into an apartment the size of an elephant’s taint, and I was usually too exhausted or busy to run on the weekends.

I gained and lost the same 5 pounds for a good year. Then all of a sudden the losing stopped following the gaining.

This became apparent when I dug out a pair of Michael Kors jeans that I’ve had for a few years now. I bought them when I first started getting serious about fitness.

I lurved them.

The denim was quality. They were the perfect dark wash. They sat just right on my waist, and the boot cut made my legs look great.

They also had the initials, MY initials, MK etched on the ass…how cool is that!?!

I used these jeans as a barometer for my success. If they were loose, it was time to celebrate. Fit? It may be time to throw in an extra cardio session. For the longest time I relegated these jeans to the bottom of my denim pile because they were way too loose to be worn.

When I pulled them out recently…they were snug.

MICHAEL KORS WHY HATH THOU FORSAKEN ME!?!

Oh, who am I kidding. CHIPOTLE, WHY HATH THOU FORSAKEN ME!?!

It was clear that my wavering between hyper-busy grad student, and depressed puddle of ooze living for her next trip to Pinkberry had its toll.

The fact that I’m not in my 20’s anymore doesn’t help either.

Oh to have the wisdom I lacked when those jeans were collecting dust. I was so hypercritical of myself then. All of the work I put into being healthy and here I am starting from a big ol’ flubbery scratch.

In the past I’ve been fortunate enough to have my body respond to exercise without much change to my  diet. I mean I was in the best shape of my life at a time that Tuesday wasn’t Tuesday if it didn’t include 4 glasses of Pinot Noir and a shared plate of nachos (DON’T JUDGE ME.)

Now that my life is much less motivated by Happy Hour (yes, in reverence it deserves to be capitalized), I am hoping that getting back into a regular workout routine will be the impetus for the overall change I wish to see in my body.

This doesn’t mean that I am going to continue to let my diet go to shit and hope that I can just sweat it off on the Stairmaster, but everyone needs to start somewhere, and I figure that physical activity is a damn good place to start.

Saturday will be the end of my first full week of new gymness, so expect a rundown of just what my plan of action is, how I am doing, and what my next steps will be.

(HINT: If you don’t see an entry by Sunday, I probably keeled over and died.)

In the mean time, if you’re looking to get back into, or start, your own fitness regimen, go for it! Remember, one simple action is all that it takes. So, turn off the interwebs and take a walk in this gloriously mild weather that is in no way thanks to climate change at all. It may just be habit forming.