Run, Forrest, Run!

Forrest felt like running…and so do I.

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I want to walk out the front door in the morning with my pumped up kicks on…iPod fully-loaded…bounding with energy. I want to walk out the door and run. Run for hours. Run for miles. And so I begin.

Since I seem to do everything by the ‘go big or go home’ philosophy, I have opted to not just begin running, but to train for a half marathon.

Me…run 13.1 miles?! I know you’re laughing. Trust me. I’m laughing too. Thinking about me having the ability to run more than 50 yards about makes me want to crawl under the covers and hide.  Then again…so did the thought of losing weight when I started all of this, and look how far I’ve come on that front?!  See?! 55 pounds and counting!

Running is not natural for me. It doesn’t feel natural and I guarantee it doesn’t look natural. The earth shakes on its axis when I run. My brain jiggles in my skull when I run. I look more awkward trying to jog than Shaquille O’Neal would look doing ballet.

But it is my mission. It has been my goal since the beginning. One of my life-long dreams is to run a half marathon. And I’m going to do it.

And the training officially started Monday.  Thanks to a running coach I had a few years ago, I have a 29 week program that will take me from barely being able to run from my bedroom to the bathroom, to running 13.1 miles.

There is no turning back now…I’ve put it out there for the world (ok not the world, but my faithful followers) to see.  As of August 4, 2012 this girl will be half marathon ready!

And while we’re talking about Forrest…

I watched it last weekend for probably the 3000th time, and a few of the lines I’d heard a zillion times before stuck with me a little more than normal.

Forrest’s momma told him he wasn’t different. Told him he was just like everybody else. Despite the fact that his back was as crooked as a politician or his IQ was less than 75, he was taught to believe he was no different. He didn’t let his physical or mental limitations stop him from doing what he thought was right. He put himself out there with little to no regard of his obvious uniqueness. He was comfortable with what he was. His self-confidence came naturally, despite a number of reasons that any average person might retreat to avoid rejection or humiliation.

So I started thinking about my own self-image. I’ve let my chubbiness be my disability. I have let it trick me into believing that I am neither normal nor good enough. I could have had all the confidence in the world but I didn’t. I let society convince me that because I was overweight, I was inferior.

I am making progress in my belief in myself, but I am still struggling in believing that I’m good enough when compared to others. I somehow have convinced myself that I am inferior to every single woman on the planet who weighs less than me. That personality and wit and brains could not possibly be as good in me as they are in someone skinnier and more attractive than I am.  In a restaurant I will secretly think in my head, “No one is paying you any attention because there are plenty of women in here much thinner than you are.”  I honestly believe that a girl with no teeth, no education and no sense of humor is better than me because she’s a size 2 and I’m a 14?! Seriously? That sounds even more stupid to type.

Where did I pick up this notion that skinnier women are better? Who sent me the memo that all men care about is a woman’s dress size?

When will I genuinely trust that I am an incredible catch? That there is no better than me?…Who I am now the same person I was 55 pounds ago. I am no more intelligent, no more funny, no more charismatic now than I was then. Being 4 sizes smaller hasn’t made me finally desirable, it’s just fine-tuned what was already awesome.

I don’t want to compare myself to anyone else anymore. I want to be proud of me and everything that I am and everything that I offer. I am so close to being there…so close to believing in myself 100%.

No more running from my own self confidence… I’ve had enough beating myself up for one lifetime. The only running this girl will be doing is 13.1 miles toward the finish line!

On your mark, get set…Go!

“The image of myself which I try to create in my own mind in order that I may love myself is very different from the image which I try to create in the minds of others in order that they may love me.” ~ W.H. Auden

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You Might Be Gluten-Free If…..

Jeff Foxworthy did his redneck style. I do mine GF-style. Minds out of the gutter people!

I’m in a cheesy mood tonight…Not that it has anything to do with the amazing queso fresco I just ingested – but in a dorky, witty, joking mood. Perhaps it’s because it’s Monday…perhaps it’s because the new job has me a little frazzled, but regardless, you’re the lucky one that gets to enjoy light-heartedness this evening…

So without further ado ….You Might Be Gluten-Free If….

…your bar tab went up exponentially when you had to stop drinking beer and start drinking liquor.

…you keep at least 5 kinds of flour in the house and none of them start with ‘W’.

…you can’t eat at a buffet.

…the smell of freshly baked pizza makes you on the verge of postal.

…Five Guys sees you coming and instantly changes their gloves.

…you get stomach cramps walking through the bread aisle.

…you question your ‘Southern card’ since you can’t remember what fried chicken tastes like.

…you’ve ever deliberately slammed your shopping cart into the Wheat Thins display in a fit of rage.

…you spend more time reading ingredients than actually eating the food.

…your happiest moment this year was discovering GF bagels at the grocery store.

…someone could rob you with just a club sandwich and Doritos.

…you’ll hug people with a nasty cough but keep someone eating a cookie at an arm’s length or farther.

…you’re considering converting to the Aztec religion, so people will accept your corn-worshipping ways.

…you pack your own toaster to go on vacations.

…you have written “CONTAMINATED” on containers of cream cheese.

…you’ve considered strangling friends/relatives who say “It can’t hurt if you only eat a little, can it?”

…you can find hidden gluten on food labels in the blink of an eye and some people around you couldn’t find it if they had a magnifying glass, a dictionary and a Ph.D.

…you burn your toast and eat it anyway because those two tiny pieces of bread cost $1.50.

…during the holidays, visions of guar gum dance in your head.

…you are afraid of spices and in restaurants, ask for your food “naked.”

…people think you’re on a low-carb diet.

…you’ve ever asked for a bunless burger and been looked at like you have 3 heads.

…you kiss your date before dinner instead of after.

…you write a GF blog!

…you’re feeling better than you EVER have in your life and still losing weight! Go me!!!

 

 

Still chipping away at the pudge. And I do not miss it at all!!

I’m going to work on updating my ‘Goals’ page sometime this week – but wanted to let you know the two new ones that I have set for myself in the meantime.

1)      To lose an additional 50 lbs by my sister’s wedding. Wedding is May 19, 2012…that amounts to about 10 lbs a month. Completely attainable goal – although I’m a little off this week – my next goal should help me get there with more certainty…

2)      To start working out. The scary thing is that I really am itching to get active. I’m imagining myself doing physical things and yearning to get a good aerobic sweat in. I’ve never wanted to sweat before so I’m a little shocked that I feel guilty about not doing anything at this point.

Now that eating better is second nature, I can focus on my other arch nemesis: moving my behind. I certainly need to work on toning and firming up. Nothing sexy about excess jiggle. And there will certainly not be anything sexy about loose skin if I manage to lose (I’m sorry…WHEN I LOSE) 100 pounds. I commit to you, loyal followers, that by the time I post a blog next week, I will have started my workout regimen.

 

Before I sign off this week – I want to mention something I mentioned last week…There’s only one day left and the way it stood a few days ago, it will take an absolute miracle (or divine intervention) for me to come out on top…but I need votes! Please go to http://jovialfoods.com/blog/7362654553-2/ and vote for #13 (If mine is your favorite) and help send me on the GF/culinary trip of a lifetime. (See last week’s post for more details.)

I really appreciate all of you that have voted for me thus far and helped to spread the word. Voting ends tomorrow (12/20) at midnight and results will be announced on the 22nd. Keep your fingers crossed that the next time you hear from me, I’ll have to add renewing my passport to my to-do list! What an amazing Christmas present that would be!

 

I hope that each of you has a Merry Christmas…may Santa bring you everything you’ve asked for and more!

“Faith is believing that the outcome will be what it should be, no matter what it is.”  ~Colette Baron-Reid

Would You Rather…

Happy Monday! Get ready…this is a good one!

Here are the 100 Things I’d rather do than gain my weight back…..

  1. Lick a mile of asphalt
  2. Tape grapefruit halves to my knees and wear them around for a month
  3. Begin each day listening to an hour-long audio of Snooki explaining why Sarah Palin is right on the money
  4. Swallow a 9V battery
  5. Play strip poker with all my aunts and uncles
  6. Flush my credit card down the toilet
  7. Have my portrait taken at Walmart
  8. Get sprayed in the face with Easy-Off oven cleaner
  9. Forever believe that stepping on a crack would actually break my mother’s back
  10. Be either person in this conversation: “Hey, whatcha doing tonight?” “Boozin’.”
  11. Develop an irrational fear of Chapstick
  12. Drive a Duke blue minivan
  13. Go see the world’s most boring opera
  14. Fish
  15. Go see the world’s most exciting opera
  16. Have all my sentences mysteriously start ending with the phrase “Boy, howdy”
  17. Get kicked in the head by a donkey
  18. Be pen pals with a death row inmate
  19. Know only 75 words
  20. Start speaking like James Earl Jones
  21. Always have to answer the phone: “Yello”
  22. Develop a taste for cilantro
  23. Wear a “Home of the Whopper” belt buckle to a job interview
  24. Eat (GF) pancakes with no syrup or silverware
  25. French kiss a buffalo
  26. Constantly forget the words to the “Happy Birthday” song
  27. Have a 4-hour conversation with Keanu Reeves about guacamole
  28. Ski topless
  29. Get a tattoo of Popeye giving Bluto a lap-dance
  30. Eat a slice of real bread – and pay the Celiac-y consequences
  31. Drink cold hot chocolate with no marshmallows
  32. Make out with Rick Flair
  33. Have all my teeth yanked and replaced with gummi teeth   
  34. Listen to Barry Manilow singing Snoop Dogg’s greatest hits
  35. Give myself hourly wedgies for a month
  36. Be the designated driver at an Oktoberfest party
  37. Drink warm milk straight from the cow
  38. Get a tetanus shot in the forehead
  39. Listen to my dad tell a story about losing his virginity
  40. Wear a thong made of steel wool
  41. Clean a men’s public restroom with my toothbrush
  42. Watch a reality TV show about the making of a reality TV show
  43. Be a telemarketer for a year
  44. Pick up every piece of a Costco-sized bag of rice after a spill– one kernel at a time
  45. Take LSD and watch open-heart surgery on the Discovery Channel
  46. Eat a kitty sandwich at a PETA convention
  47. Spend a Saturday afternoon at Wal-Mart
  48. Cough up my own liver
  49. Carry a giant bag of bark wherever I go
  50. Think that I’m speaking Spanish when I’m really speaking gibberish
  51. Watch old people dance
  52. Go back to dial-up internet connection
  53. Wear Victoria’s Secret PINK brand sweatpants
  54. Vacuum my eyeballs with a Shop-Vac
  55. Get a full-body massage from Roseanne Barr
  56. Wear a Speedo to church
  57. Have my colonoscopy broadcast on network TV
  58. Be stuck in an elevator with a troupe of flatulent mimes
  59. Randomly call numbers from the phone book and demand “Who dis?!”
  60. Wax off 85% of my hair
  61. Do a 10,000 piece puzzle of a dozen polar bears break-dancing in a blizzard
  62. Put a sticky note on every object in my house, identifying its purpose
  63. Watch sausage and/or babies get made
  64. Wear Elton John glasses for three months
  65. Ask Tom Cruise about Scientology
  66. Glue my mailbox shut 
  67. Run barefoot across a construction site
  68. Watch nuns knit
  69. Repeatedly bang my knee on coffee table
  70. Create a flag that will represent my own nation
  71. Go to a toy store and try to purchase a Monopoly game using Monopoly money
  72. Go to Vegas and boycott drinking and gambling
  73. Pour boiling water up my nose
  74. Invent a new language consisting only of variations in the tone of armpit farts
  75. Develop an allergy to mittens
  76. Whenever I meet someone, announce that I’m the one who coined the phrase “coin the phrase”
  77. Sleep wearing a fur unitard and ice skates
  78. Tell Paula Deen she’s banned from using butter
  79. Go through a car wash with my windows rolled down
  80. Fit Rush Limbaugh for assless chaps
  81. Drink water out of toilet in Mexico City
  82. Call 4-11 and shout “Oh my God! He’s trying to kill me!”
  83. Pierce my lady parts
  84. Inadvertently be the cause of Coca-Cola going out of business
  85. Be a Pro Bowling Tour groupie
  86. After getting my drink on, wake up in a jail cell in a foreign country wearing a wedding dress that doesn’t belong to me
  87. Lose my CareBear
  88. Eat Coco’s dog food
  89. Drive with my seat scooted all the way up
  90. Go to Dollyworld
  91. Live in one of those houses where everything’s slanted
  92. Have the navigational system in my car start talking in an Aussie accent
  93. Super Glue a gerbil to my forehead
  94. Inherit the national debt
  95. Take a job as a change-maker in a video arcade
  96. Be glow-in-the-dark for six months
  97. Eat a plate of abalone, haggis, chitlins and head cheese
  98. Milk a cat
  99. Eat less and exercise more
  100. Write a list of 100 things I’d rather do than gain the weight

What a week! After a stomach virus (which I would have thought was a strange gluten conspiracy if it weren’t for the fever) – and I didn’t lose that much.

And I’m going to apologize ahead of time…but I need to vent this week.  I’ve managed to find some pretty decent substitutes for gluten-heavy items. Crackers are an easy substitute, broth has been and easy switch – but damn…after over a month I am dying for some good starchy goodness.

Sitting around celebrating Father’s Day yesterday, my amazing soon-to-be brother-in-law (holy hyphen that was a quite a sentence!) and I were talking about food. He’s quite the food connoisseur, which I love. A man that understands the beauty of the pork belly like I do….Mmmm!  (Sidenote: That ‘mmmm’ was in reference to the pork belly, not the man. Not that he isn’t handsome…he’s just already reserved by my little sister.)

Sorry, I digress….Ok, so we were sitting and talking about food…he brought up Price’s Chicken in Charlotte. If you’ve never been there, it is worth a trip around the world. My great grandmother (God rest her soul) had nothing on this fried chicken. It’s the stuff dreams are made of.  And I can’t have it anymore.  Not only can’t I have it anymore, but as a girl tipping the scale at over 200 pounds, I shouldn’t even be considering fried chicken. Nonetheless, I’d kill a man for the opportunity to sink my teeth into that greasy, crunchy piece of poultry euphoria.  So there’s one thing I miss.

Another thing…Nilla Wafers. Why? Duh…I live in NC and what do we eat for dessert in the South? Banana Pudding.  Once again, my culinary whiz aunt made the most delicious looking tray of BP for dessert last night. I was tempted…so freaking tempted to just lick the spoon. Alright, I lie. I wanted to stick my face in the entire tray but it was, as it should be, filled with Nilla Wafers. There was part of my Cool Whip-loving self that almost took the bait last night, but I would have been too sick to function for a few days.  Speaking of being sick…needing some gastric relief last week, what settles your stomach? Saltines. Sesame seed crackers on an upset tummy = FAIL.

I want some Carolina Treet BBQ sauce (stupid wheat flour as an ingredient), some lo mein, an authentic meatball, an everything bagel, gnocchi, a flipping beer!!

Not sure why this seems to be getting harder and not easier. I’m slowly finding some good replacements (Elizabeth’s Pizza has a great crust but I’m unsure of prep caution)…my sister made some great fresh spring rolls (sans cilantro just for me!)…but there is still so far to go with some of these “Celiac Friendly” foods out there. Get with it food industry! No one likes to eat cardboard! At least I hope not…and if they do, I’m sure there’s a rehab for that.

And…deep breath.

Thank you for allowing me to bitch for a minute.

Hope you all have a fabulous (and tantrum-free) rest of your week!

“A diet is the penalty we pay for exceeding the feed limit.”  ~Author Unknown

Box Office Flop

Happy first week of June! My favorite month of the year…official start of summer. My birthday month. End of the fiscal year. Beach weather. My birthday month. 🙂

I had the displeasure of making a video of myself this week. Ugh…talk about a buzz kill. Video may have killed the radio star but it also killed my confidence.  (Hope to be able to share the reason for the video with you soon…don’t want to jinx myself.)

I have always had this weird quirk about my personality when it comes to people embarrassing themselves…often when they don’t mean to – but I cannot muster up enough courage to watch it…especially if I don’t know the person.  (I know – that’s so backwards.)  During American Idol I have to turn my head away from the television when someone sings – good or bad. During talent shows I have to hide my face I’m so anxious for the person auditioning. I don’t know what it is…it’s like I can feel their nerves. Sometimes I wonder if I’m more nervous than the person standing up there belting out a horrendous rendition of “I Believe I Can Fly”!

With that being said – when I have to watch myself on film, like I did this weekend, then forget it. I wanted to bury my head in the sand. I thought I had issues with myself in still shots…haha – you have no idea how bad it is in motion.  Voice doesn’t sound normal…and my appearance….Well – camera is not currently doing me any favors! Certainly wasn’t sitting there watching it play back thinking: “Damn, I’d shag me.”

Oh well…that’s what I’m here for, right?! To make baby steps to get to the point where I look amazing on screen…should I have the opportunity to get back on camera that is. Keep your fingers crossed!!! (Wink wink.)

So the scale….oh the scale. Four months in….and apparently we’re carrying the “baby step” theme right on through to the scale numbers. Down just a skosh…

Sorry – looks like I took this picture in dense fog…216.4 is the official number.

So glad that I picked the hottest week of my life to decide to set a goal to “start” working out….went for a walk a few days. No, wait…I didn’t walk for a few days – I went for a few walks….whatever – you get the point!  But this heat is craziness. I was sweating just thinking about walking outside and standing in the sun.

I did decide to bust out a little Shakeweight action this week….I can only imagine what that would have looked like on camera. I’m sure it would have been America’s Funniest Home Videos worthy. While it does look like the stupidest, most ignorant piece of exercise equipment on the market (2nd only to the Thighmaster of course) – I’m baffled to report that it actually works. (There’s a great how-to video on YouTube if you need it. Although the motion is pretty self explanatory.) And my torso is extremely sore.

Hold on…I just said my torso is sore…this is for arms…Ok, so very clearly I am doing it wrong. But it’s moving something around in there. Or just twisting it weird. Wow…I’ve always known I was uncoordinated…but too uncoordinated for a dumbbell you jiggle?! Only me!! 🙂

Week was relatively uneventful otherwise…Gluten is staying where it belongs…OUT of my digestive system. And I’ve had some great recipes again since the last post.  Alex at Natty’s outdid himself again…Fried Green Tomato (coated in cornstarch for a GF girl like me), topped with jalapeño pimento cheese, black eyed pea relish and a shrimp.  Delicious! This tasty morsel, ladies and gentleman, warranted a bigger mama slap than the pork belly!!

Love how this has started to turn into a GF food blog…oh well – at least I’m not gaining! So, Alex…and any other chef/cook that wants to make me their GF guinea pig – I welcome the challenge!!!  Bon appetit!

“A diet is the penalty we pay for exceeding the feed limit.”  ~Author Unknown

More Really Bad Advice…

I’ve decided I’ve got to get really hard core about working out starting this week. Energy level has been a problem previously, but I’m feeling extremely guilty about NOT doing anything physical…which I guess is a good sign. In the meantime, please allow me the opportunity to get just a bit of silliness out of my system before I shift it back into high gear…

  • Keep a canister of helium near your scale and take in a big lungful before you weigh in.
  • If you must eat fudge, be sure and wash it down with a Diet Coke.
  • They couldn’t call them “Apple Jacks” if they didn’t have real apples in them, dumbass.
  • It doesn’t matter if you do one pushup or one hundred, so I always just do one.
  • A homemade licorice headband is stylish and can help you keep your energy up during a workout.
  • Marshmallows are mostly air. Air has no calories, so eat as many as you want!
  • If you insist, most waiters and waitresses will give you a “wild guess” at how many calories are in various entrees.
  • When adding up the calories from the frozen yogurt with sprinkles and frozen cookie dough you just ordered, don’t forget to subtract the calories of all the toppings you could have ordered but didn’t from the total.
  • Baked Cheetos are pretty good, especially if you give ‘em a whirl in a Fry Daddy.
  • One time this guy was jogging and he dropped dead; I’m not saying you shouldn’t jog… I’m just sayin’…
  • Tight pants are in this season.
  • To make a healthy banana split, substitute banana for the ice cream and ice cream for the banana (note: I’m still in the test phase, so I’m not absolutely sure this one’s good to go yet).
  • If you take the recyclables down to the street on time, you win “immunity” and are allowed to skip one weigh-in.
  • Drink lots and lots of water, or if you don’t have ready access to water, milkshakes.
  • If you’re going to go through the fast food drive-thru no matter what, at least get some exercise by going through on a unicycle.
  • Keep some snacks on a shelf close to your scale so you can scarf them down immediately after weighing in.

Officially hit 30 pounds lost!!!! Wahoo!

Was curious what that amounted to in terms of other objects…30 pounds is the equivalent of an average 2 year old…a microwave…240 eggs…4 gallons of water…10 pairs of cowboy boots…54 cans of Coke…5430 pennies! I can’t imagine what it would be like to have that many pennies “added back on.” It’s definitely a good visual to keep in mind to keep me focused on moving in the correct direction.

As far as my new life with Celiac – I’ve turned into one of those obnoxious people at the grocery store that studies each and every food label for minutes at a time…the girl that picks up the same food from 4 different manufacturers to find the safe one. 10 minute trips to the store have turned into 2 hour trips. Gluten-free foods are NOT all created equally! The taste of some of these things would lead even a person with no taste buds to jump off a bridge! Do they not test this stuff before they ship it out?!

While I’m a champ when it comes to grocery shopping or cooking at home, I’m still struggling with trust when it comes to eating out. Can’t someone just open of a completely gluten-free restaurant?! It would make me must less anxiety-ridden! Cross-contamination is my worst enemy!!

I’ve been gluten free (aside from a few unintentional glutenings) for almost a month now. Oh what a difference 30 days makes!! Feeling more and more amazing each day…now there are NO excuses for not being active!! Here we go…

“An active mind cannot exist in an inactive body.” ~ General George S. Patton