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June 14, 2015

Setbacks and Reboots and Moving Forward

Okay folks I haven't written in a while but that's totally my fault.  Life has been kicking my butt with the amount of work I've been doing.  My hair I thought was taken care of since it was up but apparently the braids were too tight in places as there was some breakage.  Not so much that I'm distraught but more than I would like.  Some areas grew like weeds but that has created an uneven neckline so it will need to be trimmed on Wednesday when I go in.  My plan after a lot of conditioning and protein and the like yesterday is to relax tomorrow afternoon.  I might have waited longer but I'm still teaching and on Friday I'm flying out for another pinup photo shoot.I was going to rebraid my hair in a few weeks before I take off for my first real vacation in a month of Sundays (don't you love old southern woman speak) just so I didn't have to deal with it but was planning on box braids or larger individual braids instead of the micros.  It again didn't do as much damage as it could and my hair feels oddly thick even if it's not down to my butt lol.  There is quite a bit of new growth that I need to take care of as well so we'll see how that goes.  If I'm not loving the hair life post vacation and work conference then I'll take down the braids and do a massive chop of whatever isn't super straight.

With all the hair out I can step on the scale and have a more accurate reading.  Turns out I was about right about how much weight they were adding to the scale because as of this morning I am officially 51 pounds down since I started working with Elizabeth at FitOrbit.  I can't say what weight I was at when I took the original photos but I was in a size 18/20 or XXL or XXL in vintage clothing at the time.  Now I'm in 12s and 14s and no bigger than an XL in some of the vintage clothing designers I love.  I actually shed a bunch of clothing that I can't wear anymore and my closet looked sad until I hung up the vintage clothing and now it has its own little section in my wardrobe lol. 

I'm very excited about the vacation even though I'm slightly nervous about going alone.  However, I've vacationed in the US alone so this shouldn't be too much worse.  I'm paranoid at all times and overly cautious.  I've gotten some good travel advice and now can't wait to catch my plane and wake up in another country.  And I get to do it again a few weeks later for a conference but this one will be more locally out of the country, just crossing the northern border.  Oh oh and I got a research grant so I can move forward with the studies I wanted to do this summer.  Yeah for me.  So yeah the hair thing not so much fun BUT the rest of my life is going well.

When I get back from the photo shoot, tennis lessons start and I'm thrilled that I can take my ridiculous amount of tennis knowledge and make myself look totally incompetent while I work out.  I'll try to take a photo or short video to share my pain with all of you.  What's up in your world ladies and the occasional gent?

May 29, 2015

Fitness Friday: New Routine!

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I have been sporadic again I know.  So have my workout routines.  I don't think I've updated that number along the side in a minute.  Damn I should do that.  Anyway, as I mentioned in my last post my weight has been hovering in the almost 50 pounds last range for weeks.  Part of that due to stress and not hitting the gym as much as I could be it felt like I was plateauing a bit.  I mentioned it to my trainer and we are switching it all up.  Today was my first day of the rebooted routine and I LOVED it.  One or two moves I need to perfect and I need to get used to actually jogging instead of just walking briskly.  Tried it today and both impressed and disappointed myself.  I haven't run in a long time for more than a few seconds so improvement there but I actually made it through three cycles of my walk, jog, sprint cardio time before my body said no mas.  We're going to tweak a few things and head back at it.  I'm a happy girl who is excited to get back in sweat mode.  Yippee and I signed up for tennis lessons so hopefully that doesn't you know kill me or more aware of how limited my sports skills are lol.  How are you doing?

Fitness Friday

May 25, 2015

It's Been a Long, Shouldn't have left you...

...without a dope beat to step to, step to. 

Okay so you haven't had a substantive post from me in a while and I apologize for that.  End of one semester and almost immediate beginning of another one tends to make me MIA.  The braids are still holding up well.  I washed my hair finally about a week ago and lost another braid but again it was one that maybe shouldn't have been braided as there was very little hair in it.  My plan for the moment is to leave it in until June 13th or 14th depending on how many days I participate in the Relay for Life walk.  Because they aren't braided all the way to the end I doubt it will take as long as normal to take them down.  Actually now that I think about it they will come down on the 13th because I need to wash my hair really good along with a sure to be necessary massive detangle.  Sometime between the 15th and 17th I need to relax my hair because on the 19th I'm leaving for the weekend to do round two of my pinup photos.  I will be at least 40 pounds lighter but between the weather, my mood and inability to keep motivation for the gym I can't promise it will be 50 as I had hoped or even the 72 I was insane enough to shoot for in six months.  I am not about that life lol. 

Other than the few lost braids my hair is holding up well and I've enjoyed having my hair tucked away.  It has helped with the gym in the sense that I wasn't trying to depuff my hair every week but I feel like the sweat is pouring down my face when I go.  I've left the gym a few times and been like okay this is a hot mess lol.  My students and coworkers have loved them as well so I may put them back in closer to my vacation so I don't have to tinker with my hair at all while I'm out of the country. 

I've also started decluttering my house and have rid myself of a lot of clothes that just don't fit or that I have no desire to wear.  I'm still working on that though cause I have a lot of crap.  Then will come books and the like.  And I've been working on my green thumb.  I was very proud of my African violets like two weeks ago and then yeah they no like me no more.  Here are some photos of what is in the works on my dresser.

 African violet a few weeks ago lol

Money tree a few weeks ago

Money tree, calla bulb, calla lilies and repotted African violet

May 17, 2015

Product Review: Just Be Carefree!

This post is overdue but with the end of the semester and beginning of summer school (tomorrow) I've been a little tied up.  So as I'm mentioned to you before I sometimes get products for free from Influenster to review honestly.  It's a good gig and has introduced me to a few new products I love and wouldn't have known about otherwise.  Well, they sent me a sample of Carefree panty liners about six weeks ago which I can admit to being a little hesitant to try out.  I'm familiar with Carefree and they make good products but Always are my people lol.  When I received the box I have to say that hesitation grew.  The box was TINY which meant the product would likely be small as well.  Granted I'm on a weight loss kick but I kind of like having a liner that covers more than the dead center of my underwear which is why I have stuck with Always as they have an extra long liner that accommodates the rounder behind legion. 

This is the size of the liner when it's sealed--which hey is great because you can tuck it in your purse easily.  I was nervous to put it politely and that nervousness didn't diminish when I opened up the liner.

The next two photos are of the liner on it's on and next to my normal liners.

But I'm a trooper and after shaking my head in disbelief for a day or so I tried them out.  Due to the aforementioned weight loss they were an ok fit in my size 6 undies, not at all great in the size 7s.  They held up well over the course of the day and were kind of unobtrusive which I guess is the point of them.  I don't know if I like them enough to forgo the Always liners at least not in their current size and thickness.  A little more length and padding and this would be a great go to product.

May 16, 2015

Social Media Usage and Relationships

Howdy folks.  Just wanted to share a message from a friend who is looking for some help with her study.

I have restarted my research and have launched my first survey connected to one of my research interests--being connected online and how it impacts our offline relationships.  I am looking for participants who currently live in the US and who are over the age of 18.  The survey will take no more than 10 minutes to complete for most folks.  If interested please click the link below.

Thanks in advance.

Social Media Usage and Relationships

April 22, 2015

Major Updates: Slim Down & Tied Up

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So the hair post part of this update.  I am one week post heading towards two.  I was tired of trying to figure out what to do with my hair so I went ahead and got it braided up before I changed my mind again.  Now in every way that is recommended not to do I've nailed a lot of them on this braid pursuit depending on who you look to for advice.  I got my braids early post relaxer and they are on the small side but not crazy tiny.  On the upside it's not human hair (again depending on who you talk to) so it's holding the look better and isn't super heavy on my hair.  And other than a bit of itching I didn't have any headaches or pains post braiding.  Now it's hard to get adjusted all this hair when I'm doing minor things but the gym movement has been good so far.  Granted that's only been two workouts but I'm not doing the puffy hair pat down right now and that kinda rocks.  I got some more braid spray and some braid shampoo today and we're going to see if we can get to at least the two month mark with the braids.  I'm not against a potential touch up if needed.  If my hair enjoys it and feels healthier then I'll get them again before my big summer trip.  So my hair updates will be a little different for a while.  Here's a photo of the new do.

Now the other update that may be just as big or little as the case may be lol.  I have lost almost 50 pounds now.  I'm about a pound way from claiming that milestone and will probably do a dance of joy when it happens.  The biggest part of that is none of my clothes are fitting or were fitting so I had to finally go try on new clothes.  I grabbed jeans the next size down and realized it was too big.  Same thing with the tops I tried on.  After a moment of disbelief I realized I am in size 14 everything lol.  I finally took a photo of myself and yeah it's not the body I used to have at all.  Still happy and glad to be moving forward but yeah I haven't seen this body since probably the 90s.  Here's a photo of that as well.

How goes your pursuit of healthy hair and bodies ladies?

The Wash Day Experience

April 12, 2015

Honey Who?: Tackling my own Honey Do list

The last few days, well week, has been completely nuts.  Such is any week before my mother goes on vacation.  Three doctors visits, an EEG, blood work, about ten little shopping trips for things only my mother would ask for (like summer robes cause you always need a robe in the house no matter if it is going to be 90 degrees), and then a post EEG meltdown that required a day in bed and random outbursts that accused me of both making her fly out and then not allowing her to leave to go do what she wants.  As of this moment however she has been with relatives several hundred miles away for almost exactly 24 hours and I am on my own lol.  That means adjusting to random noises in the empty house that I don't pay attention to when she's here.  And remembering to prep less food cause it's just me to eat it.  Other than that though there's a lot else to catch you up on.

So after I got home I finally moved the dilapidated grill out for the trash man.  I'm not sure if I have to call the bulk guys for it cause it's seriously falling apart but I was tired of waiting for it to crash into pieces.  That also meant tossing the grill cover that was a mess as well.I came in and bagged up a ton of things that had been sitting on the floor and needed to be tossed.  I relaxed my hair and it's much better than last time (went up to super strength instead of normal) but I would like a stylist to handle it again.  I need a trim in the back but I am moving forward with getting my hair braided and will leave it up for at least four weeks.  If it times out well I can leave it up until right before the pinup shoot in June.  I'll take it down let it rest for a day and then probably relax it again.  Whether or not it goes back up into braids will depend on how much my hair hates that process.  Some moments are great.  The others my hair is like chick I'm going to itch you until you break down crying.   Having said that though I kinda want it tucked away when I leave for my bucket list trip in July.  I'm not hitting all my bucket list spots--honestly I'm just going to one place BUT trying to keep my relaxed hair cute in another country doesn't sound like fun for me.  Plus I have to leave the country again about a month after that for a conference.  That's just up to Canada but again lazy on a quick trip seems like the best option. 

Today I have graded everything for two classes and all but one item for another.  I had to stop though because they were making me want to drink heavily.  I just got through having my lunch and now I'm writing you.  In a bit I need to wash clothes.  And I still need to get some smaller jeans or more belts or both.  Tuesday I'm going back to the airport I think so that I can try to get into that nifty Pre Check program before my flights start.  I have two trips to make for business before that too but those will be drives.  Life is busy but I'm happy and I am back to losing weight yippee.

I relaxed with the Affirm Fiberguard relaxer again on super not normal this time.  I probably left it on longer than I should have .  The front came out a little bit better than the back but not dramatically so in all honesty.  Detangling was a breeze after a quick deep conditioning post relaxer wash out (with a protein treatment and normalizing [neutralizing] shampoo from Affirm then a shampoo and condition with my Moroccan Oil products) using the It's a 10 conditioning treatment.  Anyhoo here are the photos--one post detangling and one post relaxer.

How goes life around your way?

The Wash Day Experience

April 4, 2015

Saturday Summary of Fitness Friday

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So I've been light weight MIA the last few weeks.  After recovering from being sick I had a ton of stuff to do at work so the gym didn't happen.  I finally got off my lazy behind (ok not totally lazy) after my two week down time amounted to a two pound weight gain.  Given that has not happened prior to this month I'll take it but it made me unhappy.  This is my first week trying the tweaked workouts that Elizabeth gave me and they kicked my butt, Monday most of all because it was a lot of alternating weight work which takes a while for my brain to catch up to and process correctly.  Over the course of the week the weight has fallen off which means the gain was solely because my behind didn't go get my sweat on.  I was able to stick to my diet easily enough despite being sick so yeah even when I'm in maintenance mode I need to make the gym life my life otherwise I'll be packing the pounds back on.  Which leads to a different conversation.

My body is smaller than four months ago of course and it's reshaping a bit as well.  My clothes are also now too flipping big.  The sweaters are beginning to look like tents and the jeans just depend on the cut but there's more room in most of them around the waist than should be allowed.  No big deal right I'm sure I have some smaller ones here and turns out no I don't.  I've been in the same weight class as it were for so long that I have jeans that are bigger than my current size but not a single solitary pair smaller.  So I have got to start adding to the smaller girl collection just like with my workout gear and unmentionables.  This may be a TMI moment so skip it if you want but I've always enjoyed my breasts even if shopping for bras could feel like I was going bankrupt.  So I was a little apprehensive about going in for a new set because I was worried about how much I had shrunk.  I honestly had no idea I just knew my bras were not fitting well anymore.  I explain the situation to the fitter who measures me up and says yeah smaller band but no smaller cup.  That seemed unlikely but I tried on the new bra and it was like I had found a new friend.  I was also a little perplexed on the cup size not shifting but for the moment I'll take it.  I'm down two sizes in the panty range as well so now I have all of these oversized things in that arena as well.  I plan on donating the jeans and clothes that aren't too beat up.  Underwear I'll dump cause yeah no but can you donate gently worn bras?  The ones that I wore a lot are just going to have to be made into something else or dumped.

Last bit of information or update for today.  I have totally abandoned my Polar F7 watch.  It worked for like a nanosecond on Monday and then kept giving me the check the heart rate monitor error.  As I have gotten smaller the thing is just glitchy as hell.  My Fitbit is still on preorder so for the next month I'm just going to work out without all the tech you know like before when we didn't know those things existed or that we needed to track those things lol.  Ok I think I'm done rambling for now.  Gotta go update the sidebar. 

Anyway how goes your fitness goals?

P.S.  I keep saying I'm going to share one of my dinners and haven't done so.  So here is last night's very delicious dinner.  It's another meal from my trainer.  Mustard Salmon, brown rice and lemon roasted asparagus.

Fitness Friday