Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Conversations with Mr. Trainer: Victory WILL be mine!

So Mr. Trainer went on vacay last week which meant that I didn’t have someone waiting for me 3 out of those 7 days to actually show up and work out. 

For the first time in NINE WHOLE MONTHS.  That's an accomplishment in itself and I'm grateful for it.

I was nervous…..like a totally irrational nervousness that I just wouldn’t go in at all.  Because NO ONE WOULD KNOW.  Absolutely no one.  Except for me. 

I’ve mentioned I’m a people pleaser……and I ain’t joking.

Now, I have gotten so much better at doing cardio on my “off” training days – but even if I don’t have training, he’s still there at the gym.  And he notices if he doesn’t see me show up on those “off” days. 

I need this accountability.  It’s the entire reason I hired a trainer in the first place…I’ll show up for other people….but hardly ever for myself.  This has been true in so many ways and in so many aspects of my life that I know it can’t all be fixed at once….but it is getting better.

It’s a character flaw that in the last year I recognize and remain very hyper-aware of….even when it sneaks up sometimes and flat pisses me off.  This is a very good thing that I can now recognize it, and though I don’t always self-correct, at least I’m getting better at acknowledging when I do or do not make choices that will better my life.

So last week began and I had a little talk with myself to just go the first day.  Just one day.  That was all I needed to worry about at that moment. 

So, I went….and it turns out his other clients were there too….and happened to walk by the elliptical with a wave or fist bump for me.  It was a camaraderie like “Hey!  We’re leaderless this week, but we’re doing the hard work anyway, for no one except for ourselves.”  I can honestly say I adore the little gym home I have.  It’s not the scary intimidating place I walked into 9 months ago – it’s now a safe haven….and I love that.

And I went in the next, then made it to 3, then to 4 and then all the sudden we’re back to Tuesday….my normal first training day of the week………..and when Mr. Trainer did the rundown of how things were?  “How’s the back?  What’s your body doing?  How’s the diet?  And, did you miss me?  I missed you!”

Me: “I missed you terribly, of course.  And I was terrified of being alone with just me for the first time in 9 months.  You know how scary it gets in my head without you there for me to purge on a regular basis….But you know what?”

Mr. Trainer:  “Oh yes, I do…..please tell me you did ok.  What is it?”

Me:  “That plateau I’ve been standing on for two months…..took a mother-loving deep dive into the hell it belongs…..down 4 pounds.  And THAT was me.  All me.  So give me your lunges, squats, and burpees…..whatever you can shove down your pie-hole sweet cheeks…..we’ve got this.”

And then we laughed and fist-bumped and hugged and did our most embarrassing touchdown dance.

Victory is so, so, sweet and as long as I continue to show up for me as much as I show up for others there’s nothing that can stop me.  Believe that.

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Unexpected Encounters in an Elevator

So, I’m completely exhausted.  I’ve been doing morning and evening workouts to hopefully jumpstart the weightloss again….I will say that after each one it does leave a sense of fantastic accomplishment and a spurt of energy…..but at the end of the day it also leaves me depleted – and I’m forever hungry – All.The.Time.  (And don’t start…..trust me….I’m stuffing my face with all the things I’m supposed to and upping the calories, promise.)

Anyways, tonight’s post is a reminder of why I’m doing this.  During tonight’s training session, Mr. Trainer and I seemed to always workout next to a very fit older gentleman that well……it was obvious he didn’t bat for my team.  He smiled a few times – and conversed a little with Mr. Trainer throughout.

After the workout, I was on the high and made it to the elevator with said other guy already in there with the door closing.  He quickly held the doors open so I could make it in.  Both of us, dripping with sweat – smelling fabulous, I’m sure – he said:

Fab guy: “Man, you never want to come here do you?  But, after you get it done you feel so great that you did it anyways.  The things we have to do to look good!”

Me: (Still out of breath) “Yep- well, I’m not at that part yet, but I really like the feeling great after.”

So, we exit the elevator and go through the glass doors of the sky rise….and I’m a few steps ahead of him and open the door to the next set of doors.  We then proceed to the stairway to the parking garage (I’ve been trained to take the stairs…..even when no one is looking, dang it.)  And, I open those doors with Fab guy trailing me.

Fab guy:  “You’re staying two steps ahead of me!  I’m supposed to open the doors…..my mama raised me right, you know.”

Me:  “Ha, I’m sorry, I guess my heart rate just hasn’t slowed down enough.”

Then we get to the bottom of the stairs to the next set of doors…..

Fab guy: “Stop now, let me do this.”  And he opens the door for me….

Me:  I smile…. “Well, thank you.  I’m MoFabulous by the way.”

Fab guy: “Mofabulous, it’s nice to meet you.  I’m Rick, you worked so hard out there tonight – I always snoop everywhere and only speak to people who I think are deemed worthy, so you know.”

Me:  “Ha, I hope so!  Thanks again….have a good week.”  And I then proceed to my car.

Rick: “Hey Mofabulous?   Wait a second.  I saw you several months ago and I think you’re wrong about the just feeling great part earlier……you are looking good too – those of our choices pay particular attention to these things (just don’t tell)….and if you FINALLY flash that smile every once in a while one might just reconsider if they want to switch sides.  Lord knows if I could – there are plenty of them in there I would choose from."

And, then – he left me right there.  Mouth gaping….then hysterically laughing.  Sent from up above, I tell you.  He managed to kick me in the behind while complimenting me at the same time.

Also……I now consider him my new best friend.

Progress people = WOOT! 

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Conversations with Mr. Trainer: Tonight I ran. It wasn't terrible.

Tonight was a doozy.  I know I’ve written before about how much you need to have a connection with your Personal Trainer if you have one, but I can’t seem to stress it enough.  If you want results, you need to hire one – man or woman – that you connect with and that can push you on levels you never even imagined.  Mr. Trainer knows the mental struggle that comes along with this journey.  I know I’m not the first he’s been through it with, but we’re also friends so he has an additional insight into the nutso psyche that I can exhibit.

I’ve made it SO FAR.  And I’m proud of how far I’ve come – but it’s hard to explain how scary it is to think of how much further I could go.  I know it seems weird to people, but that’s the only way I can explain it.  I’ve never been athletic or a “perfect” size.  I’ve just always been me – a klutz with a size….or two…or three….larger than everyone else.  It’s a comfort zone that you get used to – and can actually learn to be successful and “happy in.”   This is what I’m struggling to push through. I do not know this new person I'm trying to become.  I've never met her and it freaks me out.

Tonight, Mr. Trainer did some serious pushing for me.

So, we’ve been dealing with a pulled back muscle that occurred last week while doing deadlifts.  The last couple of sessions have been filled with a lot of stretching, foam rolling, and ridiculous yoga-like moves for all to witness the glory.  Seriously – it’s completely embarrassing, but it helps a lot.

This evening we began with about 15 minutes of stretching and not nearly as severe of pain that I had been experiencing when Mr. Trainer announced that I would probably hate him by then end of the night but it’s time we step it up….AGAIN.

We then proceed to go upstairs to the track:

Mr. Trainer: “When was the last time you ran?”

Me: “Ummmm…….pretty sure it was Jr. High gym class.  There was a mild sprint towards a hill a few weeks ago though….nevermind.”

Mr. Trainer: “Seriously?”

Me:  “Yes.  Serious.  Don’t do what I think you’re about to do.  Just don’t.  I’ll do millions of Burpees, plank push-ups, and squats if you just don’t say what I KNOW you are about to.”

Mr. Trainer: “Look princess – 9 months have led us to this and you’re more than ready for it.  Give me one lap – just one for now.  Do NOT start calculating in that brain of yours, you think entirely too much for just one person – just go.”

Side note:  Y’all…..the track of this gym has an open center……to the floor below.  So, at every angle….SOMEONE is watching the poor goob that is running/walking/lunging on the track above.  I do it too – when I’m downstairs, it gives me someone to feel sorry for that they are probably suffering more than me.  And, at this very moment in time I strongly considered telling him where to stick it and walking out.  That’s how deep the resentment to running goes.

Me:  “Can’t I just run some stairs, or do the stairmaster, anything else?”

Mr. Trainer:  (Grabs my shoulders and puts me square in front of him) “Look at me.  You’ve lost the equivalent amount of weight to about a 1st  - probably a 2nd grader.....60 pounds?  Please.  We’ve hit a wall.  You’ve reached a point to where everything left is the really good stuff and you will get there so help me.  It’s this – or us just enjoying each others company for 3 hours a week.  That, we can and do without you having to pay me for these sessions.  Suck it up and start running.”

Me:  “Well, you don’t have to be sassy about it.”

So, I ran and completed the first lap.  Wheezing and pretty sure I was going to die he then has the nerve to say:

Mr. Trainer: “Again, two laps this time……and shut it.  Just go.”

Now I’m wondering what bug crawled up his very toned behind and just hoping I make it without losing my lunch.  But I did it and the world did not end.

THEN……….he has the ever-loving gall to say:

Mr. Trainer: “One more time – 3 laps.”

And at this point, I’m just plain mad at him and seriously considering the conversation that I will surely have with his girlfriend on why she didn’t give him a hug that morning.

So, I make it through lap 1.  Ok, I’ve got this.  The end is nearing – just get me through the next.  As I finish lap 2 – I see Mr. Trainer standing with MJ and Blaine at the “finish” – they’re all just standing there with their usual smirky pretty selves and probably discussing how ridiculous the client looks running to absolutely nowhere and heaving like she should probably have an oxygen tank strapped to her……and so begins lap 3.
I make it about ¼ way through and I’m so absolutely done, I can’t take it.  I semi stumble and stop for just a second to catch my breath when I hear a yell from the other side…..

Mr. Trainer, MJ, and Blaine (it’s all coming from different places so not sure who said what): “Come on, princess – pick those feet up and MOVE.”  “One foot in front of the other.”  “You’ve got this.” 

I’m halfway home and rounding the last corner.  I can see Mr. Trainer and crew standing at the finish yelling like mad men.  I’m pretty sure my heart will give out in the last seconds like some dramatic movie and faintly recall what they might say at my funeral.

And I finish. 

I can’t even speak at this point and am wondering if hearts really do somehow beat out of chests…..and dear Lord where is the air I need to breathe?

Then MJ and Blaine slink off to wherever they go when they’re not training and Mr. Trainer gives me a high five, pats my back and says…..

“Now, are we going to finish this or what?”

And at that moment I knew he wasn’t speaking about the workout – he was speaking of what haunts me the most……am I going to finish this or just let myself be minimally proud of the halfway point to where I’ve made it. 

My reply?

“Damn, right we are.  Just watch me.”

Thursday, June 26, 2014

Conversations with Mr. Trainer: You never know how much you needed something until it's there

Growing up, there were certain things that came easy to me.

I was a better than average student, though not excellent, but I realized very quickly I could get pretty good grades without having to work too hard.  This was excellent news as I will (still to this day) go nuts if I’m told to sit in a room and study something just because someone else thinks it’s good for me. 

I began piano lessons the summer before second grade with a teacher that had a long waitlist to become one of her students.  So, when she had an opening and I was next on the list I began lessons with her……even when just 2 weeks prior, I had broken my wrist and was in a cast.  I learned about musical theory, was able to identify notes just by sound, and went on to study with her for close to 10 years where I won State Competitions every year except for 1.  That 1 was a fluke – and I was robbed, I tell you.

My parents let me take art classes during the summer and it was discovered that my oil painting wasn’t too shabby.  I remember doing the assigned painting of Victoria Falls on Saturday afternoon in a back room at Michaels and my mother took me to show it to my Grandparents.  And, I distinctly remember proudly showing it to my Granddaddy who met me at the door of their home and the look in his eyes when he saw it.  It was one of surprise and pure pleasure……and gave me so much excitement to see.

I was in band throughout middle school and high school.  Always trading out first chair week after week with two other girls who shall remain nameless.  (Ahem….you know who you are)  On one particular day, I was asked to do the chromatic scale on the Clarinet, and after I finished I remember the very difficult to please Band Director whom I suspected never really liked me because, well, I had an even bigger mouth back then, say, “Hmmm…..who knew those short stubby fingers could do something like that?”  I proceeded to give him my best smirk – which was my way of saying – “That’s right!  I know you like these other two better, and I’m fully aware I don’t have the hands of an excellent musician…… but I WILL rock this and show you where you can shove it.”

All of these things also add to the reason of why I’m also such a people pleaser.  I have a smart mouth, talk a big talk, but if I can make someone be proud of me….or force them to compliment me even when they don’t want to…..I still get giddy inside.

Now, I’m not telling you all this to brag or be boastful……..I’m telling you to show a stark contrast to how much of a struggle it is to conquer things that absolutely do not come naturally to me.

I was NEVER good at sports or anything having to do with athletic coordination.  I loathed gym class….even more hated dodgeball day…..and when it came to summer camp when most of the people were out during free rec time doing actual recreation?  NOPE.  Not me.  No way, no how.  (Luckily I had the sense to have like minded friends.)

So, tonight, when we had this episode of Conversations with Mr. Trainer……I couldn’t help but want to do a happy dance.  This new stage of my life is a LOT of hard work, failures, tiny wins, and pure determination that is hard to come by even on the best days.

 Mr. Trainer is always encouraging and never fails to miss an opportunity to do it, but we’ve also hit a point of frustration with this process, and he knows it’s part of the gig to be honest with me about it.  The dang scale has NOT MOVED a centimeter in a couple of months and we both have our opinions on why, but his are much simpler than mine of course.  And, while being an encourager and excellent coach – he doesn’t hand out superfluous compliments.  Which, with my Type AAA personality added with the need to please can be even more frustrating to say the least. 

So, he’s decided to change things up………A LOT.

A few months ago, he decided it would be fun to watch me do squats on a Bosu ball.  Don’t know what that is?  Take a look!

It’s a ball that when you flip it……..then stand on it……..it takes every ounce of your being to not fall of the dreaded thing, much less do a squat on it.

It was AWFUL.  He held on to me the entire time and it sucked eggs.  Truly.

Tonight – he decided it was high time to try it again.  And amazingly, I did about ¾ of them without having to hold on to him like my very life depended on it.

Mr. Trainer:  “Well, look at that.  Even I didn’t know it could be possible!”

Me: “Thanks so much for your faith you weasel.”

Mr. Trainer: “That’s what I’m here for.”

So, the evening continued and the deadlift portion of the program began.  I’ve mentioned before that I really do like deadlifts.   Man, they are ROUGH - but they strangely make you feel a little powerful….like my completely non-athletic body can actually be good at something.  But they are, for me, a TOTALLY, embarrassing thing to do in front of actual human beings.......your chest HAS to stick out to one end of the continent....and your butt to the other.  Ridiculous, I tell you.

Then the 3rd round began…and another trainer, Simon, whom we workout next to occasionally and I’m always surprised at his super sweet, gentlemanly manners when he speaks to me, entered. (It's a gym after all and there's LOADS of testosterone raging)

Mr. Trainer to Simon: “I’m so proud of Mofabulous – look at THAT.”

Simon: “Man, she has awesome form.  You must be a proud papa, huh?”

Mr. Trainer: “Well, let’s just say….she’s not the most coordinated of people in the gym.  But everytime I see her do this, she nails it and I’m always surprised.  It’s one of the best things she does. I have two clients that have worked out with me for years and I can’t get them to have even close to perfect deadlifts. It straight makes my day.”

Me: “Really?”

Mr. Trainer: “Yes.  Of course.  Now, go run some stairs – 3 up, 3 down - and we’ll do another rotation.”

So, for the first time in my 8 months (this time) of working out with Mr. Trainer…..I didn’t give one dramatic eye roll, not one bit of hesitation…..and ran those stairs like I was Rocky himself.

I hadn’t realized how much I needed that one bit of encouragement and recognition.  I suppose that makes me a person with a tad bit of an ego issue, but there it is, and this is all a process of recognizing what moves me and what I need to work on.

I can, and will, not only do this – but will finish it.  No matter how long that dang scale decides to ignore me.

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Conversations with Mr. Trainer: Who knew he could be an Executive coach??

So, I have a pretty big deal work meeting coming up this week.  

One, where for the first time in my entire career, I will have to be in front of the crowd instead of letting Bossman do the work.


I don’t do well with being in public.  One-on-one convos, I’m brilliant!  Tell me I need to plan a big deal event in under a week?  No problem, I’m your girl!  Put me in front of a bunch of people?  I clam up, turn bright red, and sweat in places I don’t even sweat while doing anything Mr. Trainer throws at me.  Everytime I think about it, I swear – I throw up a little and my blood pressure shoots to questionable levels.

I was also counseled by a perky blonde this morning that’s trying to coach me in public speaking that I should probably keep to unassuming clothes, jewelry, and flat soled shoes so as to look demure.  I have things I’d like to say in response to that, but shall keep that in my pocket for another time. 

So, in tonight’s training session, I relayed the turn of events to Mr. Trainer.  Being the ever so supportive guy he is, he replies:

Mr. Trainer:  “So, what’s the big deal?  You show up, you do the thing, you either get it or you don’t then you leave and come see me for another session that night.”

Me:  “YOU DON’T UNDERSTAND.  This is huge.  It makes me want to run away to Fiji and dig holes or something for a living.  Anything, but this.”

Mr. Trainer:  “Ok then, I get it.  Think about this way….do you remember when we first started training together?  We spent the first two months only working out upstairs near NO ONE.  Because it was quietly understood you weren’t ready to be in front of anyone and you had to find a little confidence first?”

Me:  “Oh yes, that I do remember.  Terrible.”

Mr. Trainer:  “Good – this is exactly the same.”

Me: “Huh?.....Um, no.”

So then I THOUGHT Mr. Trainer just moved on to something else.  He proceeded to bark orders and make me do nutty things, which most don’t really intimidate me anymore.

Now, I’m not sure if this is just because I have absolutely no shame left, or that I have found a little bit of confidence…..it’s a draw.  Anyways, I digress.

So, then we ended up in a small training room that is adjacent to the co-ed steam room, which I am fairly certain is never frequented by females….because, gross.

We’ve worked out there before and it hasn’t ever really bothered me because we usually go in there because the rest of the gym is super busy.  Tonight, that was the case as well.

But then, a few minutes into it, things got weird, y’all.  I mean, Grade A Super Weird.

A man – probably in his upwards 60’s decided to come out of the steam room to cool off and hang out by the half wall that separates the steam room “lobby” to the training room to chat it up with Mr. Trainer.  

Side note:  When they stand behind that half wall – they are shirtless with towels wrapped around their waist so it pretty much looks like they’re just naked traipsing around the locker room for all the world to see.

Mr. Trainer chats with him for a bit while I’m on a mat doing weird contortions and trying not to think about it.

Then the man stops talking and proceeds to watch the show.  Mr. Trainer wanted me to do the horrid step-ups…..that are at least half my height….while holding obnoxious size weights.  He was conscious of the weird silent guy so positioned me to where my back would be towards him.  It was a tricky call….chest forward or butt back?  Lesser of two evils.

So, I make it through most of them when the man goes back into the steam room….

Me:  “WHAT was that?”

Mr. Trainer:  “I dunno – he was being weird – I was trying to look out for you though to put you in a little less compromising spot.”

Me:  “Yeah, I noticed – thanks.”

Then a few minutes later……I’m on a mat doing the terrible, no good, very bad plank push-ups and ANOTHER guy pushing 70 comes out to watch the show.

My head is now on full blast.  WHAT IS THE DEAL?  I HATE THIS.  MAKE IT STOP.

So then the man FINALLY ventures back into the steam room.

Mr. Trainer: “Ok, that was weird too.  You just have to have tunnel vision…..focus on nothing else but what you came here for.  Congratulations…….you just made it through a tough workout, while sweating and shaking all kinds of bits in front of over-aged creepy guys.  Now, tell me why you can’t stand in front of a board room and speak?”

Me:  “Point taken.  Ok. You're right, ….I can do this.  I will do this.”

Mr. Trainer:  “Of course you can.  Now – my job here is done….go forth and shine.”

Me:  “Oh, stuff it.”

Then…..while walking towards the door Mr. Trainer decides to shout out….

Mr. Trainer:  “Hey Mofabulous?  Wear the heels.  I know it sounds sexist, because it is.  But…..cliches are there for a reason.  It couldn’t hurt.”

Me:  “So noted, good sir.”

Mr. Trainer: “Oh – and just in case things do go horribly wrong, can you make sure it’s videoed?  I’m in need for some new material.”

And that folks is how my “problems” are so carefully put into perspective.  The world will not end and the sky will not fall.  I’ll still have to show up to life after said meeting….I’ll still have to make it through another torture session on Thursday evening…..and I’ll still have to deal with Mr. Trainer’s sarcasm and creepy old guys from the steam room.

But, I’m so wearing the heels.  I’m still just a girl, you know.

Thursday, June 12, 2014

Conversations with Mr. Trainer: Sometimes it pays to be SHORT!

Things have been WAY too serious up in here so I thought I'd show a tidbit of some lighter things...they DO actually occur and I should probably talk about them more often, so here goes....

Contrary to popular belief.....I usually try not to complain about something new I’m being given because I’m trying very hard to give new things a shot without overthinking it…..and I do trust that Mr. Trainer would not have me do something that he didn’t believe I could actually do.  

But….tonight, I knew my body was telling me for whatever reason that it was done.  Completely.  

I should also note that about 5 minutes IN to the session Mr. Trainer received a text that he did not like.....and ended up punching a wall.....more than once.....and I've never seen this sweet-hearted, docile character like that......so we both didn't say much..........I love to talk - but I know when to not poke the bear.  So, most of our session was filled with intense counting and barking of orders.  

It was about 10 minutes until the hell was over and for some reason I was NOT seeing the light at the end of the tunnel as I usually see the 10 minutes left as a victory lap.  Everything hurt and was a struggle….so, I consider it my own little God Wink tonight that he fixed it without me:

Me:  “There’s no way I’m getting on that machine.  I’ve seen other girls do it and I imagine that all of these He-Man guys get such a kick out of it they talk about it for days.”

Mr. Trainer:  “Nope, you’re going to do it.  Shut your mouth for once.”

Me:  “Well, that’s no way to treat a lady….you should be ashamed.”

Mr. Trainer:  (Feeling very proud of himself, I’m sure.)  “Climb on Princess and just do it.”


Mr. Trainer:  "I call 'em like I see 'em"

Me:  "Ok, but this will not end well.”

So, I proceed to attempt it while glaring at him.  Something wasn’t right.

Mr. Trainer:  “What’s going on?  Why does it look like that?”

Me:  “I dunno – my knees keep slipping.  I’m TRYING to keep everything where you told me to.  Seriously, I'm not bluffing.”

Mr. Trainer then rattles around on the machine….looks at the adjustments….and even calls Blaine over to look too.  After much man muttering, Mr. Trainer looks at Blaine and says:

Mr. Trainer: “Well, CRAP.  She’s going to lord this over me now since I made her try it.”

Blaine:  "Your problem.  Not mine - she loves me so I have no worries."

Me:  “What are you talking about?”

Mr. Trainer:  “Well, it seems you’re just not tall enough for this ride.  Go ahead and gloat shorty.”

Me:  “Oh, thank GOD!..........SEE??  I just knew it wasn’t meant for me.”

Mr. Trainer:  “Oh, say your prayers later Princess.  I’ll consult with the Devil for our next session anyways.”

And the we looked at each other and laughed like loons.  Because we both needed it.  It's probably not as funny if you weren't there.....but it was like a balm to my spirit tonight and I'll take every giggle that it gave me........and I know Mr. Trainer did too.  

And THAT is how I know that the Big Man Upstairs is always looking out for me.

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Conversations with Mr. Trainer: Lessons learned

Ok, so this is one of those vague posts.  But, I made a promise to myself that I would document my journey with the whole truth.  It helps me.  It’s my inexpensive version of therapy.  And, I realize I probably sound like a broken record sometimes.  It’s my story though, so people just need to deal. 

Even the ugly times.  Always honest.  This one’s for me, because I’m sure at some point in the future I will need to be reminded of it.

Some names/pronouns (big word! Go me.) have been changed….because, well - again, this is my blog and others shouldn’t be punished for me having a big mouth.

This particular session was leg day.  I loathe leg day, mostly because Mr. Trainer makes me do step ups that are at least half my height (have I mentioned how vertically challenged I am?) with weights in obnoxious amounts at some point.  And somehow it’s always in front of a mirror so not only do I have to struggle to not pass out, I get to watch myself lumbering up and down while dripping inordinate amounts of sweat.  It’s not the pain that gets me as much as the mortification of what I am making other people witness.


When you have a trainer, that you also count as a friend, they tend to know a lot about you and what’s going on in your life. 

I began this session not saying much which I always somehow forget is a clear sign to Mr. Trainer that I’m thinking about something entirely too much because normally I talk  and overshare too much…..so the conversation began:

Mr. Trainer:  “So, have you talked to you-know-who?”

Me: “Nope.”

Mr. Trainer:  “Wait, were you nice last time you talked?”

Me:  “Yes, I was nice.  I CAN be nice.”

Mr. Trainer:  “Do you miss them?”

Me:  “What are you, Oprah?  Ok.  Yes, but I can’t do anything about it.  It is what it is.”

Mr. Trainer:  “Geez.  Sensitive much?”

So, things fell back into silence.  I huffed and puffed and even did Burpees without the usual eye rolls and complaining.  Clearly, things were serious.

Mr. Trainer: “Ok, just stop for a minute.”

Me: “What, what did I do?”

Mr. Trainer:  “You haven’t once told me to stick it somewhere tonight…..nor have I heard you tell me to shut it.  I’m going to need you to stop being nice – it’s freaking me out.”

Now, I don’t break down often.  And have managed to make it approximately 7 years in knowing Mr. Trainer without doing it in front of him.  I consider this an amazing feat, just so you know.  But tonight, I was momentarily possessed by something other than myself and could feel the anger just below the surface.  Which for me, unfortunately, means tears are not far behind.

Me: (In an artfully dramatic way, I’m sure.)  “What, exactly do you want from me?  You complain about me complaining.  You always refer to my eye rolls as epic.  And tonight, I haven’t done either.  Shouldn’t that be considered a GOOD THING???  I’m here, aren’t I???  I showed up, and I’m doing every stupid thing you’ve asked me to do.  What the HELL do you want?  It sucks.  All of it.  I HATE the step ups, I HATE the burpees, I HATE those damn push up plank things.  I HATE it.  And nothing’s happening.  The scale is not moving, but yet I’m here….day after day, feeling…and pretty much sure I’m looking like a complete idiot.  So if you could just LAY OFF for one night that’d be great.”

Mr. Trainer just stood there and listened.  Didn’t move a muscle.  And the few people that were in the tiny room with us deserted the field like WWIII was beginning.  Even Blaine who always likes to be around for any kind of drama.  Yep.  Things were serious.

And then it started.  The tears welling up and then the racking shoulder sobs that you just can’t seem to stop because it’s already too late.  And you feel like even more of an idiot because no matter how much your head is saying, “NO!  This can’t be happening!”  your heart and body just don’t seem to listen.

I had almost convinced myself to just run out the front door of the gym and pretend this never happened when Mr. Trainer proved yet again that his momma raised him right…..when he slowly walked over, put his arms around me, and softly said, “Stop it.  You are not the reason for someone else’s unhappiness.  You need to focus on you.  That’s it.  That’s your only responsibility.  Showing up here is showing up for yourself.  When you can finally get that concept through your thick skull, everything else….including the scale….will go in your favor.  STOP comparing yourself to everyone else.  There is only one MoFabulous, and she’s someone I’m happy to actually know and like a hell of a lot.”

Me: "Even when I'm completely acting nuts?"

Mr. Trainer: "Especially then."

I just nodded and then asked what’s next because clearly speaking was not in my favor.  So Mr. Trainer proceeded on like everything was like normal…..bless his sweet heart.

Intellectually, I understand the concept he was trying to convey.  But, the heart often has other ideas of how it should react.  And I’m slowly learning that this is a much bigger journey with a whole lot more to discover than just numbers on a scale.  It took 33 years to get me to here…..it will take more than just a few months to undo the ugly issues.

I’ll get there eventually.  I do believe in that, I really do…..it’s just sometimes I could really do without the tough lessons. 

Now………..on to the next, it has to end sometime, right??

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Conversation with Mr. Trainer: Baby steps

Ok dear readers….I do have lots of heavy stuff on the horizon and will get to them when it’s right for me.  (At least they’re heavy to me….and this is my blog so I’ll qualify what I want.)

So, tonight I began my second training session of the week very distracted, a little disappointed in life’s circumstances, and just willing myself to get through the next tortuous hour. 

Of course, like he always does, Mr. Trainer called me on it the second we began (maybe it's because we're friends....but sometimes I prefer to think he's just a friend to the devil and has a weird sixth sense when it comes to his clients) and encouraged me to focus, remember why I’m doing this, and reminded me that I deserve it.  I’ll spare you the details on that, because quite honestly even sometimes I, in fact, can find that even too syrupy sweet.  However, it’s the other times when I’m reminded of my strength – even just the physical – that I know I can make it through others.

A very short portion of a conversation……but a BIG reminder of why I’m doing this.

Tonight, while doing several different lifts – Mr. Trainer kept referring to the fact that he was a little taken aback that they were too easy.

Mr. Trainer:  “That last one was too light for you.  What do you think?”

Me:  “Well, we could try more.”

And then the next move………

Mr. Trainer: “Um…..that one needs to add more weight too.”

Me: “Ok, we can try it.”

This happened 3 more times with 3 different exercises.

Mr. Trainer: “ So………….exactly how long have you been holding out on me?”

Me: “Huh?”

Mr. Trainer:  “Mofabulous.  Try this weight.”

Me:  “Well, that’s ridiculous.  That’s NOTHING.”

Mr. Trainer: “Exactly.  We’ve just today more than doubled – close to tripled the weight you’ve started with IN EVERY EXERCISE and you’re breezing through this.  Why in the world do you still doubt yourself?  We CAN do this.  God, sometimes I wish I could just shake you into reality.”

I had a vague reaction of being proud of myself....but really just wanted to ball up and cry.  Why did that hit me like that?  Why am I always limiting myself?

And....those thoughts are so completely annoying....even to me.

I have no idea why that’s a common theme.  Sure, I have my suspicions…..but the why is difficult to comprehend – and face.  But, I saw a glimmer tonight of what I could be thanks to someone who’s not afraid of showing me – and I’m….Excited.Terrified.AndalittleHopeful…..about who that person could become. 

Let’s hope I have the faith and follow through with discovering Her. 

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Conversations with Mr. Trainer: He better be glad he's more than a pretty face

Soooo…….this happened.

You all remember the Red Shirt Basketball Guy, right???

Mr. Trainer is incredibly private with those that he doesn't know.  However, we share stories about our personal lives all the time.  The good - bad - funny.  We each know the 'characters' in our families but don't really know the names or much else.  He tells me loads – but doesn’t advertise it….and detests the fact that I talk about my issues publicly.  Quite simply – he just pretends I don’t ever write anything.  We’re comfortable in this illusion.  For now, at least.  (Because lets be honest…..I just can’t keep my trap shut.)

Tonight while exorcising my demons with Mr. Trainer, we ended up on an arm machine.  While making strange contorted faces praying desperately for rep 15 to come faster I realized…..with immense horror…..that ‘Red Shirt Basketball Guy’ was on the machine next to me.

Red Shirt Basketball Guy to Mr. Trainer:  “So, what’s mom cooking tonight?  I need a good meal.”

Mr. Trainer:  “How do I know, punk?  I’m an actual man that can take care of himself.”

Red Shirt Basketball Guy: “Psssshhhh.  Whatever.  I was just asking if mom was gonna be home.”

Me:  (Alarm bells start vaguely ringing in my head.)

Mr. Trainer:  “I dunno – you can call or just show up – so she’ll coddle you and pretend that you’re her favorite….because we all know I’m the shining win of the three.”

Red Shirt Basketball Guy:  “Oh…..(something that made me blush and embarrasses me to write…..)

So Red Shirt Basketball Guy stalks off….

I look at Mr. Trainer….horror still in my eyes……: “Is that????”  I just can’t even get the words out.

Mr. Trainer:  Sheepishly says…..”Oh yeah….have I not mentioned he’s my brother?”

Me:  “O.M.G.  I hate you so much right now.”

Mr. Trainer:  “What???  I told you I know him.”

And the kicker??  I've actually been properly introduced to his other brother.....why I have not been properly introduced to this one is beyond me.....and I'm pretty sure I'm going to need that explanation for part of a defense.

Mr. Trainer is now buried in some far off place it will take decades to find.  And I’m not even concerned about the consequences because I will for sure die of embarrassment tonight.


Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Conversations with....All the Trainers??

I swear.  Sometimes I wonder if I pay just for training sessions or comedic relief.  Because y’all.  Words can’t describe the hilarity that happened tonight.

So, the session started off in the ‘Tire and Battery Shop’ like Mr. Trainer calls it.  It’s a separate room off from the gym filled with most regular gym stuff added with a lot of Crossfit type stuff.

Mr. Trainer:  “So, I think we need to start working on heavy lifting.  Deadlifts.”

Me:  “Ok, whatever.”

For those of you that aren’t into the gym vocabulary, this is what I’m talking about…..
Of course it's not me...but so help me it will be someday!

It’s the thing that a lot of people are intimidated by.  They mostly see the very built guys wearing the weird belt and grunting over.

Mr. Trainer:  “But first, we’re going to do some stretches and kind of simulate it to get you used to it.”

So….he proceeds to show me what to do in his very serious teacher voice.

I figure it can’t be too hard so I go for it…..and find that it feels like I’ve had too much to drink as the balance is so not attractive.

Mr. Trainer:  “Ok – I realize you are….well, um…have more chest weight than I do, but try to control it and focus.”

Me: (Being that I have the humor of a teenage boy….Giggle.  And with No Shame.)

Mr. Trainer:  “Now, be serious.  Focus!”

Me:  “Sorry – it’s just that when you say those things, you blush so hard, and How in the world am I supposed to keep a straight face????”

Mr. Trainer: “ Gah.  Just. Do. It.”

So then he gets me to do the deadlifts.  And I swear, there are two things running through my head:

1)      You really have to be comfortable with the person teaching you this because your behind literally has to stick out so far….and your trainer has to physically position your body this way.  And, you have to stick your chest out like you’re waiting for whistles.  Side note:  It took everything in me not to bubble over with giggles.  Because.  WEIRD.  And he had the serious face because he’s for real about this stuff.

2)      You understand the douchebaggery that is so prevalent at gyms now.  You find yourself thinking, “Wow – this is cool.  I wonder what weight we can get up to!  I can now officially be considered a badass.”  It’s a problem.

So we continue with that and he keeps adding weight – I so rocked it and can’t wait for the next time.  See?  Douchebaggery.

Then halfway through, all of a sudden 3 other trainers that I’m familiar with enter all on their own and not with clients – just to do their own workout.  For most, this might be a dream come true.  However for me, I don’t see how, when I’m already sweating in places I’d rather not talk about , would I enjoy that audience. 

This situation brought on so many things …….including Mr. Trainer having to quietly apologize saying, “I swear I don’t claim them, I just need to be entertained over a few beers now and then.”  I know, Mr. Trainer….we all have those friends. 

And 6 of which………

1)      You’re not sure if they just don’t realize you’re there or if you’ve become such a fixture that they figure you witnessing their conversations is no problem.  (And they obviously have no idea I have a blog.) I heard things that would definitely make grown men blush.  And they all actually know my name, which brings me to #3…..WHY DO THEY KNOW MY NAME.  The anxiousness that this causes can not be truly explained.

2)      You realize that they all have an instinctive need to teach people when they inherently start to bark off orders to you while you’re doing strange things with weights and through the haze of all the prettiness around you, you forget who to listen to and start falling all over yourself…..because WHAT NORMAL PERSON COULD STAY STEADY THROUGH THAT.  And you forget to be too embarrassed because of said haze of prettiness.

3)      You will most definitely take mental notes on how the opposite sex thinks of girls and their dates.  Surely, I can use this as future ammunition.

4)      You hear quotes like “I’m pretty sure we just used each other.” And “Wait….was that Wednesday night or Friday night girl?.......along with a slew of other markers.” And you begin to wonder if you’ve ever been on a date with someone and been given a nickname.  TRUST ME….you only know if it’s a good or bad thing based on the nickname.

5)      You will appreciate Mr. Trainer so much more, but view a lot of people differently, when after the workout he explains what some of those nicknames mean.  I can’t ever unhear it, y’all.

6)      You wonder if some of these stories heard tonight could be put in a blog post without somehow being sued for breech of something years down the line.  Then you realize…..”Yep, I’ll just put them in a book some day and change the names.”

Have I mentioned lately how much I adore my gym and the characters that come with it??  Sometimes it’s the ONLY thing that gets me through, y’all.

Life.Is.Hilarious.  And, I should add....they really are a great group of sweet hearted guys....but let's be honest.....they're still guys.

Monday, May 5, 2014

Conversations with Mr. Trainer: The Non-Gym Edition

I’m not one to relax.  It’s not in my vocabulary.  I like to think I can, but have been reminded by a lot of folks that I just can’t do it.  If something happens….especially with someone I care about deeply, I WILL obsess about it until it’s resolved.  My obsession was nuts on this one, because it matters in many different ways.

So, for those of you that read my Saturday blog, this is the Part 1 (because there's always a part 2) edition response.  48 hours of silence and today, I get a phone call around 10am while at work.

The phone rings….

Me: (I see his name and my heart drops.  So….I immediately go shut my office door and the feeling of dread creeps up.) “Hello?”


Me: “Ummm….hey, (insert his name here.)”

Mr. Trainer:  “First: I’m not mad at you.  I figured you had stuff going on, so I let it be.  I’ll make you spill it later.”

Me:  “  Ok…. “

Mr. Trainer: “Yeah, I know you worry too much.  So I’m calling you this morning because I KNOW you’re worried about seeing me tomorrow night.  Now you don’t have to be weird.  You're welcome.”

Me:  “ Well, thankssoverymuch for letting me worry all weekend!  I even had a dream that you would never allow me to train with you again!”

Mr. Trainer:  “Geez.  Women.  Can’t live without them and can’t stop loving them.  Drama, much?  GAH.  So, are you ok?”

Me: “Hmmm…..well, I can say that I will be.”

Mr. Trainer:  “Well, good – because if not, I’d just have to come see you and give you a wedgie or something.”

Me:  “Gross.  Boys are disgusting.”

Mr.  Trainer: “Yes.  Yes, we are.   I shall see you tomorrow and we will dominate.  Cardio and smart eating today, right?  RIGHT?  We’ve got this!”

Me:  “Yeah…ok.  GOD.  Stop telling me what to do!”

Mr. Trainer: "Aaaannnnd, she's back."

And……………just like that all is right with the world again.  FACT:  The difference between men and women = We have feelings……….and they equate them to wedgies.

Lord, help me.

Sunday, May 4, 2014

Pretty Sure 'Big Sandy' was the clincher....

When you go through high school and college we tend to have a “group” of friends.  As life goes on and we have to start our adult lives some of those friendships taper off and you begin to meet new people through whatever avenue – jobs, family, hobbies, etc. 

And if you’re really lucky you keep those old friendships through all of the new stages of your life. 

I’m sure the first time we met it was probably through school.  We lived in the same town, grew up in the same school district.  But we really became friends through church. 

We can be complete opposites at times.  She’s super responsible – I suppose because when you’re a wife and a mom you have to be.  I’m not a wife or mom so responsibility can go by the wayside now and then.

She’s also one of the funniest people I know. 

On this, we have our strongest bond.  We both love to laugh and find things appropriate and not so appropriate so hilarious sometimes we just can’t take it.  There have been many a times where we’ve gone into fits of giggles when even the people we’re with have no idea what is going on.

She was my roommate at youth camp every summer during high school.  The stories we told late at night or the giggles that came with it or the story of “Big Sandy” that we made up when we found out an inmate from a mental hospital had escaped nearby were of legend.  We would wake up half terrified/half hoping he would be propped up on the roof outside our window because how cool of a story would that be?

We’ve been through life’s hardest times together too.  She’s the first person I called when after years of battling a brain tumor with my mom – life decided to be extra special and we found out she had breast cancer too.  I’ll never forget her words to me on that phone call:  “I’m so sorry.  I guess now we have to wear pink?”  Then we laughed.  Because we had always discussed how the “pink” cancer gets so much more attention than the others.  Life’s big joke was now on me….and she understood it perfectly.

I’ve seen her go through her hard times too.  How strong she was sitting on a waiting room floor all night while her husband was in a life-saving surgery.  How she never left his side in the months of recovery after.  How she continued to love him through it.  How they continue to make such a full life for themselves perhaps because of that night.

These experiences are why we both understand the need for dark humor – because sometimes you’re just all cried out and that’s all that is left.

I heard her son’s first cries when she called us in the hospital waiting room right after he was born.  I was witness to her and her husband giving him his first bath that night.  And, I adore that her daughter may look like her Daddy but has the precociousness of her Mother.

We know that even when life gets in the way and so busy that sometimes we forget the important things, that we can always circle back to our friendship for respite and things are exactly as we left them. 

For this, I am forever thankful.

Funny, beautiful, kind, hard-headed, has the strength of 10 thousand angels, and today she’s finally as old as I am.

I’ve decided I’d like to be her when I grow up.

Happy Birthday sweet friend – I love you!  

Saturday, May 3, 2014

Hills, and Grief, and Clouds........and Sunshine.

I just adore my neighborhood.   Made up of steep hills, towering trees, and large wooded lots…..It’s an old neighborhood of ranch houses all built in the 50’s.  Now, what a single girl, not yet 30, was thinking when she bought a large house for her and her 8 lb dog, I don’t quite remember, actually.  But I love it anyways.

There’s a terrifying steep hill on one of the streets that even when you take it in the car you sometimes wonder if you’re just going to slide slowly backwards.  On the occasional times that I walk in the neighborhood, I always purposely avoid it because 1) I’m just not that sure I wouldn’t die or injure myself somehow 2) I’d be mortified and never leave my house again if someone witnessed me going out like that.  It’s how my mind works.

It’s a fairly quiet neighborhood with the occasional welcome sounds from the neighborhood kids playing basketball, or street hockey, or riding their bikes.  Especially on days like today. 

Perfect weather here today in Dallas, Texas.  If you’ve ever lived here for any amount of time you know we can go from ice to 80 degrees all in a 24 hour period.

And for those of us that have lived our entire lives in this fair city, we KNOW when the jig is up.  THIS weekend is the one we have to cherish.  It’s the one where we should go do ALL THE THINGS we can outside because it’s our last bite of Spring weather….and we’ve barely even begun the season.  We KNOW that this is our last taste before things start to burn like hell-fire.  Where we put on that cute sundress and flip-flops and have the perfect make-up and hair and then we go outside and proceed to sweat in places we never knew we could.  The makeup runs, the hair explodes, and we completely forget how much we prayed for warmer weather during this last winter.

So, today was one of those last days to be enjoyed, yet mine started out like one of a depressing winter season.

I couldn’t bring myself to get out of bed.  Up at 5am with the mind just spinning all sorts of thoughts and bemoaning the fact that I had a 9am training session.

So I sent a text and canceled.  I let the dark win.

I’ve yet to receive a response from Mr. Trainer.  The silence is deafening.  And, I know he’s disappointed, but not nearly as much as me.

After falling back asleep off and on for a few more hours, I finally faced it.

I can feel it starting to happen again. 

The dark cloud of depression that starts to approach.  It’s a cloak that if you even begin to entertain the thought of wrapping yourself in it, it takes that one shot and grabs you by the throat.  And you never can really put your finger on what makes it appear.  It just does.

But, this time it was different.  You see, when you go through dark times like that – you rarely ever know you’re in it until it’s so out of control you can’t even put one foot in front of the other.  

This time it screamed at me.  A thousand sad thoughts, all in my voice of course, telling me how I’ll never change.  How I’ll never succeed at becoming healthy like I want.  How I’ll never figure out what I’m supposed to DO with this writing thing.  How I’ll never find someone that appreciates me just for what I am and not what I can give them. 

It was LOUD, and I heard it and recognized it.  Like an old lover, sometimes we run back because it’s familiar.  It’s what we know.  And that dark is not nearly as frightening as the one we don’t know.

THAT is the difference, this time.  I’ve come to know myself enough to listen to it.  And to know that the power to change it is all me and no one else.

It’s not Mr. Trainer’s responsibility to beg me to show up.  It’s not my friend’s responsibility to just know when I need to get out of my house.  It’s not my family’s responsibility to come rescue me.  Even IF every single person in this category would, it’s not on them.

The responsibility lies with me.  And I owe it to myself to show up for life.  To show up for who I WILL be, so help me.

These spurts of depression or thoughts of failure are kind of like marks in a grieving process.  Grief is dealt with in so many different ways and certainly never have set timelines. 

It may sound strange to some, but I think in all of this change for me I’m grieving.  Grieving for the loss of what I once was…..even if that Old Hag needs to get gone……it’s what I know.  It’s also grief for allowing so much time to be lost while being that person.  And fear for the unknown of what I have in front of me to get to the person I want to be. 

Again, there lies the difference.  I’m listening to my heart and doing something about it….and recognizing why this time.  The grieving process is not over.  And it won’t be the last time that ugly cloud tries to approach.  But, my heart is louder and my head is getting stronger.

So, I got out of bed, put one foot in front of the other.  Made some scrambled eggs…..cuz protein, protein, protein!  Put on some shoes and began to walk.

I needed air.  I needed this beautiful weather and our dear city’s last taste of Spring.  I needed to show up for myself.

So I walked.  Up and down those steep streets, dodging the neighborhood kids on their bikes, watching them laugh and fight over a basketball game, waving at the old man who sits on his porch all day.

And then came THE HILL.  I did what I always do and started to make a turn to avoid it, but then I stopped.

I could easily have gone the other way and still have accomplished what I came to do.  I got myself outside, I got some exercise, and I breathed the fresh air.  I certainly didn’t HAVE to take the hill to prove something.  There wouldn’t be anyone to see unless I did something monumentally stupid.  Because there’s always someone there when that happens.

So, why couldn’t I move?? 

Y’all, I have NO idea why.  Nor do I know what possessed me to start moving again.......in the direction of the hill.

So, Mofabulous, did you walk the hill or not?




Mofabulous: 1   Hills and Dark clouds: 0

Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Conversations with Mr. Trainer: He apparently thinks he's paid to play Matchmaker

So, I know that because of my posts most of you think that every session is all empowering and encouraging and stuff.  There are those….but, really the ones that get me through are the funny and normal conversations that happen.

Tonight, I happened to take the elevator up to the gym with a guy that I recognized comes to the gym regularly and the Front Desk guy, Jason.  Jason and I talk from time to time and he’s a very likeable, easy going guy so we proceeded to talk in the elevator.

Then the other guy said a few things to me that I honestly don’t really remembered.  I smiled, said a few benign things back and then proceeded to check things on my phone and carry on a short convo with Jason.
 So, we get off the elevator.  Regular gym guy proceeds ahead and I hear this from Jason:

Jason:  “So are you always a snob or is this just that kind of a day?”

Me:  “Huh?”

Jason:  “He was clearly trying to flirt with you and you acted like you were just too busy to notice.”

Me:  “ What?? He was NOT.  Really.  He was just making conversation in an elevator.”

Jason:  “ Ok, so you’re clueless then.  Good thing I like you.”

So then, I began my thrice weekly training session with Mr. Trainer and about halfway through while I’m doing some weird contortion on a mat….enter Jason.

Jason to Mr. Trainer:  “Your girl here was being hit on in the elevator earlier with the red shirt basketball guy and stuck up her nose at him.”

Mr. Trainer (while looking over at the basketball court):  “Him?  Really?  Mofabulous….were you being snooty?”

Me:  “ I WAS NOT.  And He was NOT flirting.”

Jason:  “Yep.  He was.  He even tried to make a joke.  Not a good one, but an ‘A’ for effort.”

Mr. Trainer:  “ Well, I’ll bring her back to reality.”  Jason then goes on his way.

Mr. Trainer:  “ You know, you’re not a snob.  Why were you being one?”

Me:  “ FOR THE LOVE OF ALL THAT IS HOLY.  He was NOT flirting.  He was just being nice.”

Mr. Trainer:  “Nope, if another guy picks up on it he definitely was.  You really didn’t notice?”

Me: “No, I just don’t ever assume that.  I’m used to being the ‘We Gotta Go Girl’  It’s what I know.”

Mr. Trainer:  “Huh?”

Me: “The ‘We Gotta Go Girl’.  You know, the sidekick of the really cute friend – and I have A LOT of them -  that gets hit on all the time.  The guy knows if he doesn’t keep the sidekick happy by conversation or drinks, he’s gonna lose his prospect because when the ‘We Gotta Go Girl’ says it’s time to go…..then they go.”

Mr. Trainer:  “Ok, I’ll give you that.  It IS a thing.  But, you’re telling me you don’t even know when someone is actually zeroed in on you?”

Me: “Nope.  It’s a rare thing, so I’m pretty much clueless on it.  ESPECIALLY 60 pounds ago.  I need a sign or something that spells it out.”

Mr. Trainer: “Ok.  I’ve decided I’m going to set you up with basketball guy, or someone else here.”

Me: “Oh no you will NOT!  I hate dating.  It’s too much like a job interview.  And everyone here is way too pretty.”

Mr. Trainer: “Pretty?”

Me: “Yes, Pretty.  I’m surrounded by beautiful men that most of them I have come to adore, but you’re all a little pretty to me.  And you KNOW how much of a klutz and awkward I am when I’m not nervous.  
Imagine how I am when I’m supposed to put on some kind of a date show and try to be normal.  I’ve been there.  So.Not.Cool.”

Mr. Trainer: “But it would be good for you!  You’re fun…..and funny…..and live an interesting life.  And you can be seriously cute even when you’re all frustrating and being ridiculous.”

Me: (While looking at him like he has 3 heads) “ First, I’ll say, I really wish I had the hots for you and didn’t love your girlfriend so much.  GOD, some people have all the luck.  Second….no.  I’m not looking for that drama.  I’ve got too much crazy just with me right now, I don’t need to add that.”

Mr. Trainer:  “Whatever.  I’ve now made it my personal mission to send you on a date and make you dread every second.  You need it.  Life is not the tidy scene you like to make it seem.”

Me:  “Just. STOP.”

Lord help me.  Seriously.  Because when that man gets an idea in his head – he doesn’t even think about the wrath that will come from it.  Have they created a wine delivery service yet?  Because, I’d do a million Burpees just to enjoy it.

And I will say, this is just one of the MANY things that come with this journey.  When you begin to feel strong and start to get a smidgen of your confidence back.  Things happen and people (guys) start to notice.  And it's weird.  And I'm trying to figure it out little by little.  Again.....Lord help me.  Seriously.

Thursday, April 24, 2014

They say....if it doesn't scare you, then your dreams aren't big enough. Well......ok then.

I remember years ago having fantasies about being a writer and running away to a secluded cabin somewhere because obviously writers are tortured souls that need complete solitude to hone their craft, right?

In my head it was a cottage in Ireland.

Set amongst the lush green hills it was tiny, but was all mine for those few months.  There was a flower garden to the side that I would pick from to keep in old glass bottles in each room.  A battered, but sturdy porch on which I would sit for hours writing the next bestseller whilst the birds chirped and the breeze blew.  And, of course, I would wave at the little old lady that would walk past said cottage at the same time every day to make her trek to the market.

As you do.

Then life happened and years went by and sometimes, if you don’t keep your focus on the things your heart whispers to you then time inevitably silences them.

And then life happens again and things start to go terribly wrong.  Somewhere, somehow, you made a wrong turn and didn’t realize it until it was almost too late, but because you were thrown a life preserver in the form of people or just the realization that you simply could not go on that way anymore you muster up a tiny bit of strength to find the right path again.

You find that the new path can still be heartbreaking because you’re more aware now than you’ve ever been about how things affect you and perhaps why you make the decisions you do. 

But, it’s also beautiful.  It’s a place that you discover all these new things in your world.  Things your mind or heart somehow refused for you to see before. 

You also find that the new path forces you to find an outlet for this new journey of yours.  For some it’s regular conversations with friends to vent or a new hobby or a $200 an hour therapist.   To each his own.

For me, it’s writing.  It’s my therapy.  I have ideas that rush in my head all the time.  Life is also just plain funny and sometimes you just need to share.  When I get a “post” in my head it drives me nuts until I get it out.  And sometimes I re-read it obsessively even after I’ve hit the publish button.  Others I don’t dare read again because it physically hurts to much.

Either way, every time I put something out there I feel like another tiny part of me has healed.  Another raw edge has smoothed out.

I want to write.

Those four words are faint whispers that have echoed in the far away corners of my heart for a very long time.  Longer than pretty much anyone knows.  And quite honestly it puts a lump in my throat so huge I have a very hard time understanding it.

I know what you’re thinking……”Um, pretty sure you’re writing now.”  Yeah, I get that.

You see, I went “away” to college for my Freshman year not having a clue of what I wanted to do.  Of who I was supposed to be.  Because of that, I was promptly sent home a year later because I just didn’t care.  (Had loads of fun though, but those are stories for another time.)  Why in the world am I going to school if I don’t know what I’m doing here? 

And then by fate, I found my current profession and spent my twenties exposed to things that people even decades into their career don’t get to experience. 

I’m grateful for my job and the experiences it brings me.  And damn good at it too.  Most days I even love it.

But then comes that whisper again.  And it’s getting louder.  And it completely terrifies me.

I have absolutely no idea what to do with it.  I mean, of course, I did what any smart person in this day and age would do and googled, “How to be a writer.”  Duh.  But that brought on a whole lot of stuff that’s hard to process.  I don’t do well with being told “what” to do.  If it feels like work I’m likely not to touch it.

So, what DOES this all mean? 

It means I’m still searching.  It may mean that all I’m meant to do is keep pouring my random thoughts into this blog to share with its 5.3 readers.  And I’m ok with that most of the time.  But the whispers keep coming.

All I know is I can’t ignore the whispers anymore even if they send my stomach into knots and my heart into palpitations and my soul into a gut-wrenching fear. 

Dramatic?  Maybe….but that’s how I imagine it would be written.

I have some ideas so I’m going to chew on them.  It’s just another lesson in life where I’m learning to enjoy the journey and not batter it with too many questions.  I’ll just have to see where it goes. 

Thanks for hanging in with me.

Oh…..and if you happen to have a tiny cottage in the middle-of-nowhere-Ireland to rent.  Keep it open for me, will ya?  I might just need a place to figure this out.

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Conversations with Mr. Trainer: It's not always Sunshine and Rainbows

So, the last month or so have been tough.  I’ve said before it’s all a mind game and that has been proving itself over and over to me lately.  I get incredibly frustrated with myself because I’ve come SO FAR!  Why in the world am I doubting that I can’t go all the way?

I read somewhere that success is not about flying forward.  It’s about moving forward, taking a few steps back, then making the choice to try, try, again.  I should probably tattoo that somewhere as a reminder, le sigh.

You see, I’ve felt defeated for some reason or another.  I have back issues and it’s been killing me lately.  I can’t make one single move without feeling it.  We’ve done massages, stretching, Chiropractors, and have made the foam roll my best friend even if when I do it the tears won’t stop due to the pain.  It’s frustrating to hurt so much because you start to think your body is failing you.  It is getting better though…..just not overnight.  It’s all a process. 

So, tonight….as Mr. Trainer does in his usual matter of fact no drama way, reminded me again.
He was having me do this thing on the treadmill.  It’s weird.  You’re kind of running, hopping?, skipping? Sideways.  I pretty much hate it.  I know it’s to get your heart rate up and do something or another….I don’t usually ask because I’m usually just hoping I don’t die while doing the things he makes me do. The tricky part is having enough coordination to switch sides without flying off said treadmill and becoming a famous youtube video.  So while I’m doing this he starts talking:

Mr. Trainer:  “Ok, We’re going to talk about this.”

Me: “Ok…..about what?”

Mr. Trainer:  “You’ve been all EMO and weird the last few sessions.  I’ve had to remind you to smile…..and it’s like pulling teeth to get you to talk.  And you CAN TALK, help us all.”

Me:  “Oh, I’m fine.  Just a lot on my mind.” 

Mr. Trainer:  “Fine.  Since you’re so full of information, I’ll ask……how’s the weight?”

Me:  “You probably shouldn’t ask me that.”

Mr. Trainer: “Nope – you know I don’t push if I REALLY see you can’t or won’t talk about it.  You know the rules.  We’re completely honest here.”

Me:  “  Are you sure you’re ready for the honest answer?”

Mr. Trainer:  “You’d have to do an awful lot for that.  Talk to me.”

Me: (Eye roll, of course.)  “  3 pounds.  GAINED.  It’s just that I’ve been trying to really enjoy life and get out of my house and do things.  I spent most of last year holed up in the house refusing to see or do anything.  So I’ve been having fun.  But….I’m so tired of hurting.  And WHAT IF I FAIL?  What if I go back to where I was before?  I’ve made this whole journey a THING.  People are watching.  I HATE disappointing people. “

Mr. Trainer: “Ok, out of the last month of feeling like this how many workouts have you missed?”

Me: “Two.”

Mr. Trainer:  “So you feel like S#@^, and you’re still here?  Only missing two in the last 30 days?  You’re showing up.  Whether it’s for me or not.  You’re here and doing everything I ask.  How many times do I have to tell you.  The WORK isn’t your problem.  It’s the confidence.  Once you finally get mostly over that it’s all gravy.  What in the world do I need to do to show you that you have got it in you to do this?  Forget about everyone else.  At the end of the day it’s you that you have to please.”

Me:  (Sigh)  “Just exactly that.  You get it.  I know.  Ok.  I guess I needed to just….I dunno.”

Mr. Trainer:  “Ok.  By the way……do you remember the first time I had you do this exercise?”

Me:  “Yeah – I’d rather not.”

Mr. Trainer:  “You held on to the treadmill….and my right arm the whole time like you’re life depended on it.  Had me turn it off to switch sides…..and then did the same for the other. This time?  You did it one-handed, double the speed, and carried on a whole conversation.”

Me:  “Huh.”

Mr.  Trainer:  “We’ve got this.  You will make it further than you ever imagined.  And I can’t wait to celebrate it with you.”

I don’t have many other words to say…..but I thank everyone on God’s green earth for cheering me on along the way.  I’m not ashamed to admit that I need it and listen to them when I don’t believe in myself.

So, I left tonight feeling encouraged.  Or empowered.  Or however Oprah would have you think it.  I have so got this you have no idea.  It will never be perfect.  But I have to believe it’s worth it.