Cubicle to Fit-ish

How a wimp becomes fit(ish)

Where I actually get better at things…

So, I didn’t want to go to boot camp last night.  I wanted to go to bed and read a silly magazine.  This is what happens every time I say or think that exercise will be my stress relief – I automatically become exhausted and don’t want to exercise anymore.

But, my guy told me to go (as he does every week) and I figured we’d be doing the punches and stuff, not the crazy circuits.  My guy and I call boot camp “kick kick, punch punch.”  And, it isn’t that the Muy Thai days are not a good workout, they are just not as exhausting as some of the circuits we do.  Thank god the teacher can’t see this because I would get my butt kicked doing eight billion punches and kicks to prove me wrong!

I was so wrong about last night, though.  We did the usual random circuits (20 push ups, 30 crunches, 40 squats X 3), but then we did a burpee contest.  Now, these are burpees without the push up, but they are not easy and we already do a ton of them in the warm up.  But, apparently, we had to do MORE.  The contest was:


Minute 1 = 1 burpee and then rest

Minute 2 = 2 burpees and then rest

Minute 3 = 3 burpees and then rest

And so on…

Your rest time keeps getting shorter and shorter and the burpees keep getting harder and harder.

I actually made it through 12 rounds (and 5 into the 13th) – I was shocked!  That is 1 + 2 + 3 + 4 + 5 + 6 + 7 + 8 + 9 + 10 + 11 + 12 + 5….


83 burpees!


That is INSANE!  I couldn’t even jump both feet back at the same time when I started.  And that is not counting the ones we did in the warm up.

On days when I don’t see progress, I’m going to remember this:

6 months ago, I could barely work out 2 times in a week.

Actually, I could barely work out at all!  All I did was walk on the treadmill.


Now, I work out at least 3 times a week and I can do 83 burpees in 13 minutes – progress does happen!

(no matter how slow it feels, sometimes)


October 12, 2011 Posted by | boot camp, kick kick punch punch, Who am I?, wimpy-ness | , , , | 2 Comments

I’m Such a No Right Now

I read a lot of health-related magazines.  At first, I think I used them as an excuse to continue being lazy; I may not actually exercise or eat right, but I sure as hell read a lot about it!  The more I read, though, the more intrigued I became about this world of food as energy and sneakers made specifically for running and exercise gear…

Now that I am on my way to becoming fit (or, fit-ish, haha), I re-read a lot of the magazines I’ve kept for inspiration.  Yes, I have slightly hoarding tendencies, but that’s another blog in and of itself.  I was looking at an old Fitness magazine and one phrase keeps sticking out at me:

 Be a Yes

I’m a wicked negative person.  I did not realize it as much when I was younger, but I see it so much more now.  My first gut reaction is always “no.”  My mind goes to the worst possible scenario for anything.  It is not a fun way to live.  I’ve spent so much time being down or afraid, that I’ve missed out on so many opportunities.  This all hit me the most in 2009 when my grandfather died from Alzheimer’s and my uncle died suddenly a few months after.  I wish I could say that these losses spurred me into this rosy, carpe diem world where I just go for it and live, live, live…

That isn’t how life works, though.  I spent a year being scared and half-assedly trying to be healthier (I’ll only eat HALF of this bag of cheezits for breakfast…  I’ll only have 3 slices of garlic bread…  I’ll exercise once a month…).  Then, I got sick and couldn’t eat or function for 6 months.  BIG eye opener.

And, THEN, I turned 33 last November.  30 didn’t hit me badly – my 20’s were awful and I’m glad they’re gone – but, I was 33 and a shell of what I used to be.  I used to be a theater person.  I used to have fun clothes and shoes and dye my hair and go to the movies and read awesome books…  I used to be fun and exciting.  Now, I’m 33 and I just go through the motions.

It infuriated me.  And, I didn’t want to complain about all of this for another year and do nothing.  I’m sick of my complaining (and so is my boyfriend!)…  So, I made a list of 33 things I want to do while I’m 33.  And 80% of them involved things I’m scared of, things I think I’m allergic to, and exercise (the rest involved movies and vacations, because, why not?!!).


#2: Do 10 pushups in a row

#5: Try three types of seafood

#14: Be comfortable on the elliptical (it makes me SO dizzy!)

#33: Run a 12 minute mile


But, really, what I want to do is BE A YES.  I don’t want to be a no anymore.  I want to have adventures and not just watch people having them on tv (even though, I do love my tv).  That is what this year is about for me and why I am just throwing myself off the exercise cliff.  I have no choice – the time has to be now.

I am also all about not judging my failures as harshly, as well, as my entire healthy self should not be brought down by one bad meal or one missed workout.  I did not make it to the gym this weekend, but I did a lot of life thinking which needed to be done.  A girl I work with was murdered on Friday, and I think it instigated a lot of this drama going on in my head.  She was only a couple of years older than me and left kids and a family. Life is so short and anything can happen.

Also, I have to decide if I am going to teach the fall semester at the community college I’ve been at as a part-time adjunct for last few years.  Part of me loves it and part of me dreads it.  It is a lot of work on top of a full time day job, but I love talking about books.  BUT, I had a creepy stalker situation and the whole thing is a huge source of anxiety for me now.  How do I choose?

Healthy Plan for the Week:

  • Monday: Plan dinners for the week and go to bed early
  • Tuesday: GYM!
  • Wednesday: Medicine ball workout
  • Thursday: BOOTCAMP!
  • Friday: Rest
  • Saturday: BOOTCAMP!
  • Sunday: Rest and plan dinners for the week

July 11, 2011 Posted by | 33 Things to do While I'm 33, Who am I?, wimpy-ness | Leave a comment

The Cereal Quitter I Wish I Was

I didn’t work out because

  • It all started when I cut my left pinky finger last Wednesday.  Well, not really…
  • It all started when we went on vacation at the end of March and I fell in love with IHOP Cinna-Stack french toast and just missed it so much that I couldn’t re-focus.  Well, not really…

I’m a serial quitter (as opposed to a cereal quitter, which would not be a bad thing for me, haha!); I am not even a dedicated quitter – I’ll quit the same thing over and over.  I’m also an excuse queen.  There is always a reason WHY.  I think I am sick of my own excuses though.

I cut my finger last week and, of course, it got infected.  I had all the plans in the world to go to bootcamp, so I went to urgent care to get some antibiotics.  The doctor, though, had other ideas and there was a procedure and bandages to be left on for 24 hours.  After judging the pain level I was in (it hurt MORE AFTER the procedure), my guy, my friend, and I all decided that bootcamp might not be the best place for me that night – and I wouldn’t get to go back until mid-July as they are on vacation for the first week.  Even with my self-surgery moment 12 hours into the 24, I was pretty down and sore.

I feel like this is a Choose Your Own Adventure gone wrong.

  • What I should have done is taken Thursday night off and gone to the gym on Saturday and Monday to work out and keep up my fitness during the holiday weekend.
  • What I decided to do was let my pinky be my excuse to quit all my good habits and proceeded to eat my way through the weekend while my pedometer wilted from inactivity.

If I continue on this path, my first bootcamp back is going to hurt like my first time did (oh, the muscle soreness…) and I have worked way too hard to go back to that.  So, I am re-directing my quitting/excuse energy into making a plan for the next two weeks and sticking to it:

  •  Run at the gym for 45 minutes this Wednesday and Saturday, and do the same next Tuesday.
  • Do my medicine ball DVD twice this week (Thursday and Sunday), and once next week (Wednesday).
  • Get my eating back under control (focus on whole foods and planned lunches and dinners) and work on not getting thrown off course

If I can do all of this, I am going to treat myself either to some new workout clothes (that actually fit me – I look like a fool sometimes at bootcamp trying to pull up my pants when doing burpees) or the Polar HRM I’ve been coveting since my birthday last November.

I am not the old me who would just give up.  I know I can do this.  I just need to do it!  Bring it on, July!!!

July 5, 2011 Posted by | boot camp, Running, wimpy-ness | 3 Comments

Making Out with Garlic Bread

So I have completely lost my good eating habits.  I did really well with WW online until March and I have been on a slow-mo fall into a pit of cheezits, diet coke, fig newtons, french fries, and all the yumminess I have been trying to not gorge on ever since.  It has been delicious, but I can see this landing me right back where I was LAST summer, and my whole healthy makeover was to become a fitter and happier me (not a yo-yo dieter making out with a loaf of bread).

I think this descent ties directly into the fact that I have not been going to the gym since I started the MMA Bootcamp.  At first, I thought bootcamp was going to be too much for me, so I rationalized stopping doing the gym so my body could adapt to the intense workouts.  However, I’ve noticed that when I am in pain from a really hard bootcamp session (like Saturday’s – um, ouch crazy medicine ball/burpee, squat push, bicycle crunch, jumping jack hot hell), exercising actually makes my muscles feel better.  I need to look more into cross-training, but I think since my classes on Thursday nights and Saturday mornings are so focused on strength training, I am going to do 2 days a week of cardio (treadmill, elliptical, or bike) to help with my endurance and keep my muscles warm.  I am hoping for Tuesdays and Sundays, which should be a good fit with my schedule right now.  Apparently bootcamp goes to 3 days a week after some promotion (YIKES), so I will have to re-evaluate my energy levels at that point.

I’m also making a meal plan for the week to try and pull myself together.  Being such a foodie, I rebel against planning out my meals, but I think getting into a better routine will allow me to make better choices.  I just need a moment away from everything to level set my appetite.  French fries and garlic bread are not a meal that will fuel me.  Soda makes me feel kind of sick.  Apple pie is not an every day lunch (well, it is for me.  That’s my problem, haha!).

I am sure my stress levels from my mom being hurt and my week long development program at work aren’t helping.  Getting back into my general swing of things (including some much needed sleep) should help me perk up, too…

June 20, 2011 Posted by | boot camp, Diet Coke, wimpy-ness | Leave a comment

The Class Wimp

I am getting so frustrated in class.  It seems like every time that we do a circuit, I can’t lift the 12lb weights like everyone else, or the stupid 20lb medicine ball is too heavy for me.  I understand that this is a process and that I am progressing at my own pace and all sorts of touchy feely mumbo jumbo about how this is my journey, but it is so annoying that I can’t do what everyone else can do.

I’m at that point where I either push through this and get through the 6 months, or I just give up and watch tv all summer.  I want to be that girl with will power and commitment, but I have eight billion excuses for everything.  But, as my mom said, I am going to class regularly and I am putting the work in.  Our first test is next week, I think, and maybe I’ll see some improvement and get in a better mood.

Diet Cokes Today: 4 and it’s only 3:30.  Ugh.

June 3, 2011 Posted by | boot camp, Diet Coke, wimpy-ness | Leave a comment

Where I’ve been and where I’m heading…

I’ve never been what you’d call active.  The last regular exercise that I did was when I was a semi-professional figure skater from the ages 3-8, and even that mostly involved laying on the ice after a fall.  And it never really bothered me.  I’m a proud nerd and I would much rather be watching my tv shows, a movie, or reading than moving, or, ick, sweating.

However, my lack of physical coordination and general wimpy-ness have become more pronounced now that I am in my early thirties.  Even as a theater major in undergrad, I leaned more towards the vocal and written aspects of theater and struggled when having to move.  I’m a klutz.  I walk into walls and trip while walking.  Even with my more physical jobs (cashiering can be hard work, especially at a big box tool depot), I was never all that strong.  I do it all wrong.  I lift with my back, I look down when I walk, and, for the longest time, I just didn’t care.

Until, that is, I got sick.  Three years ago, I had a really bad year.  I work in a cubicle, which was so much better than cashiering near an open door in the winter.  My mother got super sick, my grandfather died after a long illness, and my uncle died.  As I always have, I started to eat my feelings.  My day started with a diet coke and cheetoes, continued on to another diet coke with some cheezits and fig newtons, and ended with not 1, but 2 dinners (the McDonalds’ two cheeseburger meal I would eat by myself and the actual dinner I would eat with my boyfriend when he got home).

Mind you, I have ALWAYS eaten like a child and always been at a healthy weight, even as a full-fleged adult with a Master’s degree, a house, and a puppy (although, I do realize now that I was one of those “thin fat people” who have no muscle).  This time, though, my age had caught up with me and I packed on 40 pounds in a year.  We have no full length mirrors in the house, though, so I lived in denial, even as my pants became tighter and my shirts slightly inappropriate.

You would think that 2010 was the year that I stopped the madness, but, no.  It wasn’t to be.  After a scary and stressful semester at the community college I teach night classes at, I tried to change my ways.  I started a couch to 5K program.  I thought (REALLY, REALLY THOUGHT) about joining Weight Watchers… then, I got sick.  I spent the rest of 2010, and the first months of 2011, either with feet and ankles swollen to zombie like proportions, massive stinging hives all over my body, or throwing up literally everything I ate.

So I lost some weight by the time 2011 hit (almost 25 lbs), but I was still that same person, weak and scared with so many failures to my name.  Something in me, though, had changed.  I wanted to be healthier and fitter (or fit-ish) and STRONG.  So, once I was feeling closer to normal, I tried to go back to the gym and I joined Weight Watchers online.  BUT, I lost my will power for the gym quickly, and Weight Watchers only works if you don’t lie to yourself (I am so bad at tracking…).

Instead of falling down into the same horrible habits (a bad meal = a bad day = a bad week = a bad month = a bad year), I picked myself up and gave myself a strict talking to.  I can’t keep taking care of and worrying about everyone else; I need to fix me.  So I joined a boot camp mixed martial arts class for women 3 weeks ago and am restarting my eating lifestyle changes in a more manageable way for me.  I am hoping this blog will keep me motivated and honest, as well as be a record of the sad place I was (and am) at all the way to the better place that I can get to!

May 23, 2011 Posted by | back story, boot camp, sweating, wimpy-ness | Leave a comment