Follow my nerdy adventures of getting into shape and becoming a healthier pirate.

Saturday, October 8, 2016

A Fan Girl's Moment of Clarity : The Out of Body Work Out Experience

This is a late night ramble is brought to you by copious amounts of  Netflix and mid-afternoon coffee.

I am such a fan girl. I truly am. I geek out over almost everything that is near and dear to me. And lately, the near and dear has been Netflix’s stunning Defenders series. Daredevil. Jessica Jones. Now, Luke Cage and soon Iron Fist. I know the Punisher is not a part of the whole Defender troop but he’s getting his own series so I’m mentioning him. I prefer these superheroes. The ones in the grim and grit and truly getting an ass beaten. The Avengers are nice, but, they are a little too flashy for me.

I know what you’re wondering: where the hell am I going with this? How does a discussion about the B Team Marvel superheroes got to do with a fitness quest? Honestly…everything!

Here’s a hint into my head space. How I get through my work outs…I tell a stories to myself. I remove myself from reality. I know, sounds crazy (and I’m not denying that I may be a tiny bit loony tunes). But it works. Got zombies chasing you? Better run faster because they want your tasty brains. Hitching a ride with the Doctor? Hunting demons with the Winchesters? You see where I’m going with this.

Today, while freezing my backside off at bootcamp, I felt myself go to a different place. It was a subtle shift. We were doing back and forth sprints. My stride changed. It was longer, it was faster. I was no longer in Oklahoma City. I was in Hell’s Kitchen trying to keep up with the Punisher and Jessica Jones. It was an instant, but it was enough to make me feel like a total bad ass. It was a moment of clarity of a work out that I could not DREAM of doing six months ago. But there I was, acting like I was some super hero. It was all in my head. But it was what I needed to get me through the work out. If I didn’t complete sprints or the jumps or the gorilla walks or the burpies (burpies…ugh…) then I wouldn’t be able to keep up with The Punisher.

For some reason, my mind keeps going back to the Punisher. Not the Tom Jane Punisher. Netflix’s Daredevil Season Two Punisher. Which, can we step aside from my weird fitness motivations and talk about Punisher? Jon Bernthal (whose name I just learned. I was calling him Shane from Walking Dead) was refreshingly and unapologetically awful and wonderful all at once. He was Frank Castle. He was Punisher. Sure, he’s the classic archetypal anti-hero, but Jon Bernthal added emotion to the character without making him soft (like Tom Jane).


Fitness. Working out. Healthy shit.

I know most people focus on their breathing and form and all sorts of things when working out. Me? I can’t do that. I can’t be in my head space like that. Maybe  Maybe it’s the writer in me. I prefer to just let my mind drift, finding inspiration in my racing heart, pulse pounding, the smell of sweat and ragged breathing. Those things take me to the place where I can aspire to be…well…a superhero. But not a shiny ones. The ones who put in the work, the ones who are get busted up a little too easily. Why? Well, you don’t see Daredevil giving up…do you?

If you need some motivation let me say this to you: Never give up. Never surrender. And always Slay On Playa. I would assume that’s what Jessica Jones and Luke Cage would do anyway…

Thursday, September 1, 2016

Never Give Up; Never Surrender - Finding and Hanging on to Motivation

Motivation is such a fickle thing. It’s slippery and elusive. It requires effort to catch it. And once you do, you have to dig your fingers in so damn deep that sometimes it hurts.
I am the self-proclaimed queen of the land of Procrastination. I’ve seem to always have a “eh, lets wait till tomorrow,” or “tomorrow is going to be the better time to do that.” I did that all throughout my educational career. But then again, I wrote some of the best papers the night before. I mean, I did crank out an epic 15 page paper on The Red Badge of Courage by Stephen Crane that got a B+. What can I say, when it comes to writing, I work better under pressure. Which could be the reason why I love National Novel Writing Month in November and April. My motivation is to prove I can essentially write a novel in 30 days.
But can I do this whole under pressure thing with other aspects of my life? Because being under pressure helps focus my thoughts and say “let’s do this shit.” I suppose I could say that it has worked and helped me be motivated to try to be a healthier me.
Before we go into what keeps me motivated, let me give you my definition of “healthier.” It’s not to be skinny. I don’t think I could ever by truly skinny with my body frame. I’m short with a long torso and short legs and I am very boobalicious. So for me to be rail thin skinny, it’s not going to work for me. Like I mentioned in my last post where I celebrated losing 20 pounds, I want to be strong. I want to be fit. I don’t want to look like a walking death stick with boobs. No. I want to have health strong fit curves. Because all the best pin ups are voluptuous. That’s what I’m going for.
See? Right there. Motivation. I am motivated by my own wish to just be better. There’s Level one complete! Once you discover your reason why and know that you are doing this whole life update and upgrade for the you and no one else, you beat the boss and move on to level two!
What is level two? Well, level two is holding on to your motivation. You don’t want it to dissipate right off the back. How do I keep my motivation? Well, there’s a couple things I do.
I wear my stinky workout clothes
I like to hang with Ben and Jerry (my treadmill and elliptical) or other workout related stuff in the evening. So, when I get home, after I do the whole family dinner thing, I put on my work out clothes that are a little stinky. In my mind, I think, well, I already stink, might as well be a little smellier and then shower afterwards.
I crank my favorite jams
If you are a music lover like myself, then pick your favorite album that has an awesome beat and blast it. For me, when I’m on the treadmill, it’s Icon For Hire’s new album You Can’t Kill Us. Great driving bass and drums along with inspirational and powerful lyrics help my pound out my 30 minute run. When I’m at home doing my MadFit HIIT and Ab work out, it’s the Rock Workout playlist offered by Apple Music. Whatever fuels you to go forward and never look back…put it on and go.
Run like your life depends on it
Running/jogging is a good way to ease into exercising. So…why not pretend you’re running from a horde of zombies? Latch on to the Doctor’s hand while you flee from the Daleks…or Cybermen…or whatever baddie of the week. Or perhaps you before a chase with the Terminator? The last part of the run is always the hardest for me, so I place my imagination in the driver seat. Whatever it takes to get you through your workout. Your body might be doing all the physical stuff, but your mind is there working in tandem with you. When the body is begging to tap out and you are almost across the finish line, as long as you aren’t broken and bleeding, have your mind push you farther. You CAN do it. Because if you CAN’T…the zombies will eat your brain…
Surround yourself with POSITIVITY
                I’m not going to sit here at this keyboard and saying that changing your life is going to be easy. In fact, it’s not. It’s hard as hell. There are going to be people who are going knock you and spit in your eye. There are going to be people give you a side eye stare and try to Jedi Mind Trick you into failure. Find folks that will encourage you and push you forward. I have been so lucky with the people I have found in my life who are amazing. And if you can’t find a real live person? There are great forums and websites that can help you propel forward to upgrade your life. I highly recommend Nerd Fitness. They are so very positive and talk on a level that is relatable. Because I mean, who doesn’t love a World of Warcraft reference? Even if you are already in the midst of lovefest, totally check their site. My favorite article is Real-Life Role Playing: What is Your Profession? (click the Hyperlink. You won’t regret it.)
But out of ALL of these and MORE advice on how to stay motivated in your epic quest to be a more kick-ass you, the most important is this:
Now, I know this is hard to believe…but…you’re going to fuck up along the way. You’re going to stumble and you’re going to fall down and scrape your knee up. You might even get some busted knuckles along the way. BUT IT IS OKAY. If you want to hang tight to your motivation, you need to get back up. You need to show the world, the nay-sayers, and most importantly YOURSELF, that you are worth the fight for a better life. I fall down all the time. I have those moments where I let old habits in. But, I recognize it. I learn from it. And I become a better persona. Again, getting healthy is not about getting skinny. It’s about GETTING HEALTHY.  Before doing all this weight loss jazz, I loved myself. I loved all my flaws. Hell, I still do. I love the personal growth and inspiration that comes with change. And that is motivating.
Thank you so much for taking the time to read my words. I hope, is some way, they not only gave you a glimpse inside what makes me stay motivated, but also helps you find your own path to motivation. It doesn’t have to be just on getting healthy. It could be anything. Just like Big Barda told Wonder Woman when she was captured by Granny Goodness and the Furies: NEVER GIVE UP! NEVER SURRENDER!

Remember to always be yourself…unless you can be a pirate…then always be the pirate!
Until next time…

Friday, June 17, 2016

When A Nerd Decides to Get Fit: An Adventure Towards Being a Better Bad Ass

Let me preface this blog post with this bit: I am a terrible salesman. I am not trying to sell anyone anything. This is just me blabbing and yammering away about what inspires, motivates, and works for me. I am in no way a fitness guru. Beauty and books and writing? Yes. Full blown guru. Fitness and health? Mmmmm…not so much. So with that little disclaimer out of the way, let’s get on with me throwing words at your face.

 This post is about the moment I decided that I needed to be a little more Kick Ass. Because let's face, I'm already awesome...
For anyone who follows me on Facebook, I’ve been dropping little bits of info about working out and trying to be a better me. Why am I doing that? Well, it’s to keep me accountable. If I’m telling the whole world “Hey! Look at me! I’m working out!” and then I stop one day, people are going to question me about it.
But why the sudden need to work out and get healthy? Let me tell you what it’s NOT about. It’s not about confidence. Because, honestly, I got that in spades. Yes, I have points of not feeling confident, but that’s human nature. I love me. I love all my imperfections: my foul mouth and dark side that comes out when I write, my stretch marks and saggy boobs, my short torso and long legs…you see where this is going.
The one thing though that I didn’t feel was strong. I didn’t feel like I could keep up with my two sweet hellions who seem to have superhuman levels of energy. I want to be able to keep up with their craziness. But most of all, I want to be there for THEM. For a long time.
My mom and one of sisters starting their own weight loss journey was what set me on the path intially. My sister has lost like 20 lbs and my mom 30 lbs (at the time). They are doing Weight Watchers. And that’s cool. But…that didn’t work for me. It was too broad for me. Meetings and such things? Not for me.
Shortly after learning of their weight loss success, that’s when things click. One of the most wonderfully badass ladies I know, Jenn, pushed and tugged for me along into being her Accountabi-li-buddy. It’s better when you’re working out and dieting with someone who shares the same sense of humor and mind set. Honestly, everything kind of happened at once. Weight loss challenger? Check. Boot Camp on the weekends? Check. Treadmill? Check.

With my hand across my heart, I can say that a majority of my weight loss success is owed to the wonderful support of not only my husband and family, but Jenn and our coach/co-worker/buddy, Cody. Cody is someone who is encouraging, not a Judgey McJudgerson. “Can’t do a burpie? That’s cool, try it this way. Don’t worry, you’ll be able to do them soon.” A smile, a laugh, and kind words go far in my book. And, it’s not about getting buff. It’s about being HEALTHY. Having a HEATHLY lifestyle. You don’t HAVE to run every night. You don’t HAVE to do a boot camp. You can just simply walk. You can dance. You can do whatever you want, as a long as you start someone where and move forward.
My starting weight with this whole weight loss challenge thing was 229lb. Now, I’m 5’5” (on a good day). And though the weight was pretty even distributed, that’s still quite a bit on my husky frame. But, I don’t want to be rail thin because if I was, I would probably look like a Death. I want to be curvy because the best pins up and sexy pirates were buxom…and strong. Don’t forget that. I want to be healthy.
So how in the hell am I doing that? By doing a bit of a life style change.
I try to walk every day.
I try to jog/run three days a week.
I go to Boot Camp once a week
I do dance off's with my daughter (she's got made skills)

I make healthier food choices, which includes meal replacement shakes.
I stopped drinking soda. I haven’t had a Coke in almost two months!
      (But I do still drink coffee…that I cannot give up…EVER)
See? Simple things. Little things every days adding up to big piles of awesomeness.
With all these changes, you might wondering, “how much weight have you actually lost then? Huh?!” Well, I have lost around 20lbs. As you can see, I’ve already started to tackle the next 20lbs. Go me!
I have been pretty fortunate with meeting some incredible people through this journey and have the absolutely best friends/family support on this amazing adventure to becoming an upgraded version of myself. Like the Bionic Woman! Or a Cyberman! No. Not Cyberman. Those guys are bad news…
Like I said at the beginning, I’m a terrible salesman. Because, well, I don’t want to sell anyone anything. I want to inspire. As a writer, I create universes and worlds and people that I hope one day will be read inspire. Inspire what? Who knows. Depends on the story. But for this blog review, right now, I suppose what I’m trying to inspire is that you have one life, and you can do with it what you want. But the question is…do you want to feel helpless? Or do you want to feel strong and in charge?
For me? I’d prefer to feel strong and in charge…if only to flex my biceps and tell random folks that it’s ‘this way to the gun show.”
Thank you for taking time and reading the ramblings of the 30 something Nerd. Next blog post will come soon (hopefully…maybe next week…don’t know…depends on Life). I say this on my other blog, but I just want to remind you to always be yourself…unless you can be a pirate…then always be a PIRATE!!

Monday, December 1, 2014

EcoTools Brushes: Why Am I Just Now Using These Brushes?!

I feel like the title of this blog post is pretty self explanatory. For real? Why have I always passed by this brand of brushes?

Let me start with saying how I aquired these brushes. I got them as a gift from one cool cat named Terri. It was the Friday before I left on maternity leave. (Which, yes, I'm still on till January.) She said she saw on my Facebook where I wanted this Sonia Kashuk brush set, however, decided that the EcoTools brushes was the better option price wise. And to be honest, don't even know what the cost of those Sonia Kashuk brushes are. I just thought they were pretty. But, Terri, being awesome as she is, told me that she loves the EcoTools brushes and wanted to give me a set of her favorite brushes. My heart swelled with love for this lady. She's so dang cool. So thanks Terri for thinking of this second time to be mom.

And by the way, I love the brushes. Holy crap they are sooooo good!

The lovely Terri got me the EcoTools Fresh and Flawless five piece complextion set (see photo below that I took at work and then posted to Facebook like 10 minutes after getting them...). The brushes that come with the set:
1. Flat concealer brush
2. Buffing concealer brush
3. Precision foundation brush
4. Complexion brush
5. Full powder brush
They are small which makes them perfect for travel. Hell, I brought them with me to the hospital in my over night bag. Yes, I did my makeup before and after delivery. Girls gotta fell good about herself. I mean, I did push out a 9 lb 1oz little turkey. Anyways, off topic.

But for being small, they are awesome! I thought applying my foundation would take a while with these, but of course, they proved me wrong. The brushes I use the most is buffing concealer brush and the complexion blending brush. Both of these make blending concealer and foundation into my skin easy which means that I don't look like I'm wearing makeup. I think I might like these little brushes better than my Real Techniques beauty sponge thing. I know that's not what its called, but its name is way too long to remember.

Did I also mention that these brushes are cruelty free and they are super cute? No. Well, I just did.

If you have a makeup lover in your life who is looking for some new brushes, why not gift them these awesome brushes? You can get them at most drug stores and they won't make your wallet cry. They are amazing quality so, you are getting more than your money's worth.

Thanks again Terri for this very sweet gift. I'm one week into being a mother of two and I have to say, makeup has been my stress reliever. So mom's out there, remember, to take care of yourself. You work hard for your family. Spoil yourself in feeling pretty.

That's all I have now. Hopefully I'll be able to squeeze in another blog or two here soon. Now, I most go gather my new Little Dude and get him and the Mini Me ready for bed.

Remember, always be yourself...unless you're a pirate...then always be the pirate!!

Monday, September 29, 2014

Dita Von Teese: Burlesque Dancer, Entrepreneur, Advocate for Glamour, and Girl Crush

Yes. I got a girl crush. Actually, I have serveal girl crushes. But lets talk about one particular girl crush: Dita Von Teese. The one and only. There are many who immiate, but none that can meet the stature of this amazing woman.

Some of you are saying right now that she's just ripping off what Betty Page did back in the 1950s. And though I can see those points as valid, I do tend to disagree. Dita Von Teese seemed to bring back a resurgence of 1920-1930s glamour. Yes, I know. She is really only famouse do to her tantalizing and famous burlesque dance that includes her getting into a gigantic martini glass. And there was that short period of time she was married to Marilyn Manson, and I know we are still trying to wrap our minds around that one. She has posed in Playboy. She has made a living out of sensuality and sexuality. But, lets bet honest...she really has looked amazing doing it.

There's a quote from Me. Teese out that floating around the ol' internet:

"I advocate glamour. Every minute. Every day."

Or something along those lines. It honestly got me thinking when I first read that and knew who Dita Von Teese is, that makes total sense. Some people see makeup as a way to conceal or to hide. I don't feel that way. Its a way for a woman to feel empowered and a little glamorous every day of her life. There are days where I'll do a full face or makeup and there are says where all I got on my face is some moisterizer slathered on my face. But at some point in the day, makeup or no, I do something to make myself feel amazing. I don't put makeup on for others. I do it for myself. For me, my glamour moments are doing something a little special with my eye makeup, or wearing an awesome bold lip. But then again, doing a facial mask or doing my nails makes me feel glamorous as well. I am doing something for me and its makes me feel awesome.

I feel that's what Dita Von Teese look and style says. She does it for herself, she could really give two shits what you think, and she is making money at what she loves.

Side bar here: did you guys know she just released a line of maternity/nursing mom lingerie? Yes. Lingerie. Not underwear. Not bras and panties. This stuff is way too pretty to be anything other than lingerie. It is being sold through Destination Maternity and the line is called Von Follies. I will be getting some...that's for sure... for her look, you know, I love it. Its so simple yet (as stupid as it sounds), complex. You would think that red lipstick and black eyeliner is pretty idiot proof. But man can you screw it up. It takes a delicate hand to get that perfect wing liner and to remember to take your time putting on that perfect shade of red lipstick. Also, you can't use just any foundation. Its gotta be full coverage and matte. The checks have to have just the right amount of blush,  otherwise its hello blush-face. Oh...and the hair. That perfectly quafed raven black hair in perfect pin curls.

Some good red lipsticks I have in my collection is Milani's Color Statement lipstick in Red Label, Wet N' Wild Fergie Collection in Old School Glamour, Kat Von D's lipstick in Misfit (discontinued) and Avon's Totally Kissable lipstick in Racy Red. (I would do something fancy like insert a photo of said lipsticks, but I'm writing this with an app on my phone so yeah...its just bare bones right now.) The first three lipsticks seem a bit more true red and the Avon lipstick is more blue based. I can't do orange reds because they just don't flatter my skin ton.

As for the other things....well, work in progress really. I have a blush from mark by Avon called Charmed that might work. And, the eyeliner...well...I have yet to find a liquid liner that serves my needs. I have two...and the jury is still out on those. Foundation wise, I feel like I need something super full coverage and matte. I don't know of any drug store brand personally. One day I'm going to be fancy and go to Sephora to get color matched with Kay Von D's Lock It foundation. It has an awesome reputation of being super full covea and matte. That might be a treat yourself birthday present....maybe...
But as for the hair...well, as much as I would love to dye it black like I did in the good ol days of my 20s, I think I've tortured it enough. Maybe I'll learn the forgotten art of pin curls...

Dita Von Teese at 41 years old is someone I look at as a style icon. I love her look and her guts and her views on beauty.

So I leave this blog post with a picture of this lovely lady and hope you feel the need to sport some red lipstick from time to time. Because there's nothing wrong with a little glamour every day.

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Yet Another Blog...

So I have found myself lately with the need to do some more stream of conciousness and randon writing also known as blogging. I of course have my main blog where I review the hell out of books, but I thought...Self, what else can you talk about? Well, shit. Makeup of course! So here we are again. Attempting to keep up with two blogs. However, I feel that doing a beauty blog might be a little easier than doing a book review blog, and shouldn't be too hard with the up keep. This blog will be more stream of conciousness as I explore and share beauty things I have found and love. And, with baby #2 getting ready to pop out in November, I feel like it might be fun to find mom friendly, quick and easy tips for just feeling pretty.

After my first pregnancy, I didn't feel pretty. I was so worried about taking care of others, I forgot about myself. I was unhappy and stressed out all the time. But then, something clicked and I said I am totally worth more than what I'm doing to myself. So, I dived head long back into my love of makeup and I'm glad I did. I'm not hiding my imperfections, I'm enhancing what I already got. And by doing so, I feel confident and kind of kickass. And there's nothing more awesome than when a friend tells you how pretty you look or asks details about a beauty routine I do or comments on my lipstick of the day.

Some might think I'm vain for doing something as frivolous as a beauty blog and you know what, that's okay. Because as I see it, at least I'm being talked about. Here's to you who read this post. I appreciate you. And I ask that you keep coming back as I post more random stuff about beauty, inside and out.

Liked that last bit there? A bit cheese-tastic, but the truth none the less.

Thanks for reading. Until next time. Remember to always shine bright and never let anyone get you down!

(Hope you enjoy the meme. My friend from work tagged me in it on Facebook, saying I'm the only real person she knows that can pull off a smokey eye. I felt so loved!)