My 25th Birthday

Celebrating my 25th with friends.

So, this weekend I turned 25 years old. For a hot minute I was not really looking forward to being 25 and every time I said it I added a fake whiny cry. It wasn’t after speaking with my friend, Evelyn (the one in blue) that it hit me that 25 is a great age. Maybe it’s the outlook she gave herself on this specific age or just her excitement on the fascination of being 25 years old, but regardless, it changed my perspective on it.

Last week I joined her and a friend for Happy Hour and with all the “25” talk I mentioned that I had read Jen’s post on being 26. It inspired me to make a list of my own. Her’s on things she looks forward to, but I want to do mine on things I want to do… 25 things to be exact.  There is no particular order, but I really can’t wait to get my list started. I haven’t had a sit down yet, but here are a few things that will for sure make my list: 1- complete a triathlon; 2- sky dive; and 3- run in just shorts and sports bra.

Now, on to the festivities of my birthday weekend. My actual birthday was Sunday but I celebrated it on Saturday. My sister gifted me the most beautiful and delicious cake. Here it is!

She brought it out exactly at midnight and it just made my night! For some reason this celebration was extra special. For the first time I felt no worries, no pressures, just lighthearted, free, and … young. I wish to feel this way every year. The people that care for me, that love me, and want the best for me where there (and then some). I had hoped to see a couple of specific faces, but in the end I didn’t want to spoil my night and decided not waste my energy on them.

I thought about what made me feel so happy and elated that day, which by the way I’m still feeling, and I believe it’s because I changed my outlook on age. I have found myself in what feels like borderline depression because I’ve yet to complete my bachelor’s degree, was still living in a rented room in what felt like still living at home, being single, losing focus on my weight-loss and fitness goals, and just dreading getting older and feeling like I’ve done nothing with my life. I know I will complete my degree program, I just have to be patient with life. I am on my own now and it feels great! I know things are not the greatest in my “love sphere” but I am managing better than I thought I would. I have regained most, if not all, my focus on my weight-loss and fitness journey because I remembered why I started. And I have to give myself more credit. I self-doubt, self-loath, and underestimate my abilities too often. I have to be proud of who I am, what I know, and what I do- after all, if I don’t, who will? And if someone tells me, I have to validate that with my own opinion of myself.

Too many people undervalue what they are, and overvalue what they’re not

Happy birthday to me! Happy 25th year to me! and Happy everything to me!

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Doing Things My Way and At My Own Pace

I was talking to my coworkers about some of my latest blog posts and about how I feel I’ve lost a bit of my focus. OK, not a little, but a little more than a little. I mentioned to them how I didn’t even start my 100 Push Ups challenge, didn’t keep up with my plank a day, and didn’t stick entirely to the no soda or sweetened drinks plan. In this post I talk about how I shouldn’t wait for the start of the week, or the start of the month to start something new. But i didn’t take my own advice because I told them that coming Monday I will definitely start anew and truly commit. In fun, but also in all seriousness, my coworker told me that I should read my own blog. That verbal shove, or whatever you want to call it, was what I needed- it’s what I need every now and then.

I pulled out my phone, opened up my 100 Push Ups app and had them spot me do my initial push up test. I completed 11 good form push ups. I personally think that’s bad ass! With those results I was placed in level 3.

with my work badge and everything!

Here’s what I’ve done in two days. Week 1 almost complete!

I am also happy to announce that I cycled yesterday and it was such a liberating ride. It gave me time to think, even though I was focused on keeping a some-what steady pace. I thought about the awesome way I feel after I complete a workout. There really is nothing like it. I woke up in the morning and felt sluggish, but remembering that I have to follow my own advice, I got ready and grabbed my bike. I headed out and immediately felt a surge of happiness and contentedness. This reminded me of all the times I didn’t want to go to the gym, the times I wanted to cancel on my trainer, the times I didn’t want to go running, and in general just all the times I didn’t want to do something and then did. Willing my mind to do something it didn’t for whatever reason- fear of failure, laziness, or simply just not caring- is truly a rush.

Here are my stats through my endomondo app. 9.47 miles in 43m:48s

Avg Speed
13.0 mph
Max Speed
16.6 mph
Calories
616 kcal
Altitude
636 ft / 729 ft

 

Oh, and I didn’t want to make dinner last night, but I did.

It looks kinda gross, but it was really tasty.

I’m wishing the best of luck to myself in all I do.

xx

Monica

Something New

I am about to embark on a new experience and it’s scaring the wits out of me. Today I am to pick up the keys to my first apartment in which I will be living in alone. One of my greatest fears in life is ending up alone, with no one to talk to, no one to fall asleep with, and just miserable. When I have too much time in my hands and these thoughts cloud my mind I retract and want to disappear. I realize then, as I am now, that this is where I fall off my tracks and wean on some weight. This weight gain leads to feelings of futility and self-loathing that I become a weight-loss martyr. My thoughts become so negative that I refute anyone who tries to tell me different and the only thing that seems to bring me back to my senses is reading about fitness, weight-loss, people’s before and after stories, other weight-loss/health journys, and some who have stood to defy the societal pressures of thinness and be happy about being fat.

I’ve envisaged my lack of crediting myself on how far I’ve come, but the fact that I want more and know that my body can do more prohibits me from accepting my hard work thus far. So, when I read blogs, articles, or watch videos on the subjects I mentioned above I get reinvigorated. I begin to believe in myself again and set myself a new goal. I mentally plan out a routine and include activities in which I believe will make me more of an athlete rather than just a workout bot. I envision myself doing laps in the gym pool, or riding miles and miles on my bike, or getting back on the running train, or having a strict boxing regimen. I see myself following workout routines but only as preparation for the run, the swim, the cycling- but something holds me. I don’t know what it is. I set a date: “I’ll start this coming Monday.” But then I ask myself why Monday? Why not today? I DON’T KNOW WHY NOT TODAY!!! And just like that I’m back at square one. I lose motivation, I lack willingness and I end up feeling like a loser.

If you are a friend that reads my blog you have entered a dark side of my being. Sometimes I have questioned my judgement in sharing this blog with you because the purpose of it was to be positive and share the good and the joy of my journey. However, in previous posts I’ve already shared my honesty in how doubtful I am of myself and how self-conscious I am about my body, so maybe this one comes as no surprise. In thinking about it, it’s not a bad thing. I guess it’s good to show how human I am, how some part of me is like everyone else- I struggle. I am not perfect. I mean c’mon, just last week I wrote about coming back with a bang. In retrospect, I think I needed to get a lot of frustration out that I was internalizing and a lot of stress about my move and financial difficulties and that’s why I did so great.

Today I have a meeting with my trainer. I don’t know how it’s gonna go. I don’t want to be whinny and I have to keep telling myself that I can do this. I can start my new attitude on any day of the week- Tuesday it is.

I’m Back With A Bang

I got back from my Miami/Madrid vacation on May 3oth and the experience has changed my life. This was not the first time I traveled to another state or to another country overseas, but it was the most significant; I’m going to consider this a milestone in my life.

To see some pictures click here.

Both cities were amazing and the purpose of travel were different and the same all in one- to have fun, party, celebrate, and explore a new culture. Needless to say, but I’ll say it, I wanted to stay longer. I wanted to immerse myself in every aspect of Madrid life; it even got me thinking about studying abroad. And one more piece of good news that came from this trip: it made me start looking for my own place and if all goes well I’ll be owning my first apartment keys on June 27th. The experience was liberating and it made me think about all the things I’m afraid of and question them. I don’t want to be afraid anymore and I want to live up to all the little inspirational quotes I have around my office- a constant reminder that I should not be complacent and to always seek adventures that will make me wiser and grow as a person.

Here is my favorite one:

Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn’t do than by the ones you did. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.

This will be my experience and mine alone and people that would like to join me are more than welcomed. I’ve been afraid for too long to go on my own and it’s about time I do. I’m expecting a  bumpy ride considering the changes I’ll have to endure and also bearing in mind that life likes to throw curve-balls because it isn’t fair.

Because this is a fitness blog (and I didn’t think this post would be including a long intro on my travels and life realizations) I wanted to let you guys know how I’m doing in the fitness realm. This week especially I felt and received the best feedback from my trainer. He thought I would be lacking on stamina after my vacation and that he’d work his way up again, but I proved to him that he can pick up right from where I left off. Plus, my birthday is coming up and I told him I want to strive to be feeling my best. With that in mind I’m going hard. SIDE BAR: I maintained my weight all through my vacation and it wasn’t even something I was thinking about. I have to thank the cities for being so pedestrian and the girls (my travel pack) for being so active.

Tuesdays are our boxing/mma days and after the workout he told me, “This is where I wanted you. I expected you to want to break but you didn’t and I’m proud.” Mondays and Thursdays he alternates between full body and weight lifting, but with this spurt of progress and his belief that I will remain consistent at this pace for a while until he ups the ante again, we’re doing full-body on Mondays and Thursdays with boxing/mma on Tuesdays.

Until next time,

LosingMonica

Self-Doubt

I meet with my personal trainer three times a week. He’s really a great guy and I enjoy working out to his routines and his pace (sometimes). During one of workouts last week I realized something about myself- I complain. I complain during my workouts and I thought about how annoying I might be. I kept these sentiments to myself and let them go. I met with him again yesterday evening and there I was, complaining, no, whining. I don’t know what I want to call it- I don’t think it was bitching because I was doing what he wanted me to.

Here’s an example: When we kick-box he has these arm pads that I kick. He tells me to do the pyramid. What that is is I kick once, get back to stance, kick twice, back to stance, kick three times, back to stance, kick twice, back to stance, and kick one last time. With a millisecond in between I switch legs and do the same thing. Easy enough? It should be. Well, here’s me: I’m about to the three kicks on one leg and I stop and say hold on- I need to catch my breath. He pushes me to keep going and I do. My last kick is always lame and we both know it. I put my hands on my waist and grunt and he’s telling me to keep going on my other leg. I do, but I keep making a fuss. He gives me about 45 seconds to one minute rest and we’re at it again; I’m at it again. Throughout different exercises I gripe, claiming I’m out of breath, which sometimes I’m not. I’m sure it’s frustrating, I know it’s frustrating.

Reflecting on my actions I want to know why I act this way. Is there something deeper to my whining? Am I really just afraid of something? I don’t know but here’s what I’m thinking. All my life, even now that I am 60lbs lighter and looking better than ever, I’ve been brooding over my body image and not giving myself enough credit for anything I do. Sometimes I look at my naked body in the mirror and I see the change but I don’t feel how I probably should. Maybe I can’t be 100% in something if I’m not feeling 100% myself. Can that be it? What if it’s attention I’m seeking? Is that selfish?All I know is that I need to shut up and keep up. I have another meeting tonight and it’s kick-boxing. GREAT! To my defense I do finish the workouts and I end strong on the last exercise so – what is it?

This needs to be my mantra!

This needs to be my mantra!

photo credit: http://www.pluginid.com/motivational-workout-quotes/

Emotional Relapse

Monday afternoon I received the official invitation from a high school friend to Miami (specifically South Beach). The trip is to celebrate her turning 25 and another high school friend’s bachelorette party. I’m genuinely excited since my best friend from high school who’s been living in Texas since graduating is going too. As a matter of fact, we’ve all been high school friends and it’ll be a great time to catch up in a way other than Facebook. Total number of girls going: 8

These girls are wonderful and sweet and I appreciate still being a part of their lives in the smallest ways- but I can’t help feeling like a third wheel around them. They have kept in touch with each other more than I have with them (four of them are bridesmaids), first of all. Secondly, I don’t take initiative in setting up outings because I feel like it’s too late to become more with them, and also, I’ve flaked on a couple invitations and they’ve probably had enough of that. However, I am looking forward to the experience but have this feeling that the reality is going to be different than what I want it to be. They have such great “group personalities” that I tend to fade into the background. I can sometimes feel myself burning to the core just imagining how I look to them: awkward, uncomfortable, bored, uninterested in what they’re saying, and maybe even conceited. I don’t know why it’s so hard for me to blend in with them. I’ve known who they are for so long, I know how they are, so why can’t I be myself with them? I’ve been told I’m great to be around once people get to know me (do I feel that they don’t know me?) and I do think I’m fun and funny and can be free and young, but what is it with me and being around these girls?

My excitement continued to fade once the fact that we’ll be in South Beach, where girls tend to be thin, fit, confident, in two piece bathing suits, sunk in. I Googled “south beach girls” in hopes to maybe see girls that look like me, but I was just bombarded with asses hanging out of thongs and pretty girls in white bathing suits. Can this really be the majority of people in South Beach? My body image perception is not the greatest. Probably every girl out there has something they wish they could change about their body- even the skinny girls or the fit girls. But, if you’re like me, who’s been called “the chunky one” all through middle and high school, well, there are more than a couple of things you’d wish to change about your body. These girls can’t wait to get into their two-piece and walk down the street with their big glasses and hats.  I’m dreading it.

I was telling all of this to my greatest confidant and she asked if all this was because I don’t get the attention they get. My answer was: I don’t mind hanging out with them as a girl group in general and doing things with them, but when the attention (the type guys provide) does come, it never comes to me. That makes me feel like crap. I am not out there seeking it or do things for that purpose, but it’s inevitable to feel in the dumps when it’s in your face (in this case, NOT in your face). I just told myself that I need to crank up my workouts and work on my midsection. Well, that hasn’t made me feel any better.

Last night I cried myself to sleep. Just thinking about it all stressed me and reminded me where I was a little over a year ago. I was insecure, dreadful, unhappy, and depressed. I feel like that’s where I am again. Even though this is how I see things maybe it’s not what they see. Maybe I’m just thinking too much about it right now and I shouldn’t worry about it until if any of it happens the way I’ve been thinking it has. I’m going to work on my confidence by not second guessing myself and going with my first gut instinct on things. I’m going to keep working toward my goal and make this trip my motivation to work harder.

When I Get Ready To Go Out

This is the type of woman I am when it comes to getting ready: last minute; wet hair; no makeup 99% of the time; frustrated.

I always decide last minute that I want to “do” my hair and put on some makeup. But, by the time I decide exactly what I’m going to wear, what hairstyle I want, and what makeup to use I only have 10 minutes to get to where I have to go. So my usual hair is pulled back in a ponytail or bun with the occasional faux hawk poof thing in the front. I want to change that and I have made some progress.

I am a huge fan of YouTube and it’s my go-to for almost everything. Someone, somewhere has already done what I want to do or learn and they are happy to share. I’ve learned quick makeup tips, easy wet-hair dos and approximate times for certain hairstyles.

Earlier today I came across a video of a girl defending herself against people (mostly girls) who ask her why she wears so much makeup. Blah blah blah, she went on and said that those people are people who don’t even wear makeup or have any experience with it. I came to the conclusion that she, like I’ve done a couple of times lately, wore makeup one day, looked stunning and gorgeous, and got so many nice compliments and loved them so much that she ended up valuing herself based on her appearance (I haven’t done that … Well makeup wise). Now, some people don’t even know what she really looks like- sad if you ask me.

I don’t want to be someone like her, or the many other girls who wear makeup every day or “too much”. Those girls seem to claim that they are not doing it for anyone but themselves. I think they seek perfection, flawlessness, and approval. I watched another girl on the same topic and she said it’s an art, and that it’s fun and colorful like girls should be (I’ll leave this thought simmer a bit longer). Regardless of how nice, pretty, and sexy I feel when I follow makeup tutorials to the “T” I also want to feel natural- even if it means that my olive skin is glowing in all its glory. I don’t want to make makeup my routine, but I will take all the knowledge I can get.

I don’t want to offend anyone who does do makeup everyday as one of my sisters does (one of the others always has mascara and eyeliner and the other is a blank canvas). How do you feel about makeup?

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^thats me all natural and whatnot.

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^thats me with makeup and some lashes :). You can still tell its me, right?