A journey in words...

Welcome to my journey in words! A story about health, exercise, weight loss, food addiction, humor, size discrimination, sarcasm, social commentary and all the rest that’s rattling around inside my head...

I now twit, er... or tweet. Anyway, you can follow me on twitter @Aeon1202

Monday, December 24, 2012

Merry Christmas!

As my husband pointed out to me last night, I've been doing a lousy job of blogging lately.  My attendance to my blog accurately reflects my attendance to my health: when one is neglected it's an indicator that the other is suffering as well.  It all started with Thanksgiving and has been going strong now through Christmas.

It's true, it's been a hard semester and difficult to fit in anything else between work and a homework avalanche - I don't mean that as an excuse, just a reason.

So, starting on Wednesday I'm attacking this with renewed dedication and determination.  I was up to five excercise sessions per week and I need to get back there fast.

As for today though - I would simply like to wish everyone a very Merry and blessed Christmas and a very Happy and healthy New Year!  Thank you for reading!

Friday, December 7, 2012

Inspiration of the Day

Not gonna lie, this made me cry like a baby.

Dallas Page's article on Arthur as is appears on You Tube:

"Arthur Boorman was a disabled veteran of the Gulf War for 15 years, and was told by his doctors that he would never be able to walk on his own, ever again.

He stumbled upon an article about Diamond Dallas Page doing Yoga and decided to give it a try -- he couldn't do traditional, higher impact exercise, so he tried DDP YOGA and sent an email to Dallas telling him his story.

Dallas was so moved by his story, he began emailing and speaking on the phone with Arthur throughout his journey - he encouraged Arthur to keep going and to believe that anything was possible. Even though doctors told him walking would never happen, Arthur was persistent. He fell many times, but kept going.

Arthur was getting stronger rapidly, and he was losing weight at an incredible rate! Because of DDP's specialized workout, he gained tremendous balance and flexibility -- which gave him hope that maybe someday, he'd be able to walk again.

His story is proof, that we cannot place limits on what we are capable of doing, because we often do not know our own potential. Neither Arthur, nor Dallas knew what he would go on to accomplish, but this video speaks for itself. In less than a year, Arthur completely transformed his life. If only he had known what he was capable of, 15 years earlier.

Do not waste any time thinking you are stuck - you can take control over your life, and change it faster than you might think.

Hopefully this story can inspire you to follow your dreams - whatever they may be.
Anything is Possible!"

Arthur's story is highlighted from the beginning, in the upcoming documentary, INSPIRED: The Movie. http://www.inspiredthemovie.com

Thanks to my friend Liz who guided me to the article that made me find this!

Sunday, December 2, 2012

Present For Me

It can be really hard to like ourselves.  Men and women alike are bombarded daily with images and expectations that are impossible to live up to without abundant free time to devote to body sculpting, lucky genetics, or easy access to photshop.  Men are told they’re not allowed to be sexy unless they’re a sports hero or an underwear model, women are told they’re forever inadequate to this or that glossy image on the cover of a magazine.  It’s an ugly jungle out there with no exceptions.

So I think it’s important to do little things for ourselves that simply make us feel good.

Today is my birthday – this was my birthday present to me:

The cartilage (helix) piercing is the new one, I already had the other three.  I love jewelry, and I particularly love piercings.  I don’t like getting them precisely, although in a weird way the process makes me feel a tiny bit macho.  I like them because each one opens up a new realm of jewelry that’s available to me because I was willing to endure the pain it took to put it there.  I know I’m not done yet, and the next one will be a reward to myself for the next twenty pounds successfully shed, and located somewhere on my face – I just haven’t made up my mind as to precisely where.

For me, loving my body is easier with just a tiny bit more bling.  It’s a way of saying to myself, hey – you’re not perfect, but you work hard and you deserve a sparkly little crystal ball on your birthday anyway.

Note: Big thanks to Jen at Tattoo Galaxy who does all of my piercings.  She’s really good at this stuff.  By the time your brain manages to register an “ouch!” she’s already done.

Saturday, December 1, 2012

The Dao of Diet

A person’s diet (and by diet I simply mean what food they chose to eat, not the word as it refers to weight loss) is a bit like their religion.

It’s personal, it means a lot to us.  Some of us want to prosthelytize our diet to others and for some of us it’s an intensely personal thing we want to keep to ourselves.  Some of us obsess over ours weekly, daily, hourly or by the minute and some people don’t really give it much thought.

My husband for example, wants to be healthy and enjoys a wide variety of foods.  When he gets hungry, he eats.  Sometimes that’s sushi, sometimes vegetables and chicken, sometimes it’s a cheese steak, sometimes a plate of cheesy nachos at 11PM before bed.  Some days he goes into a feeding frenzy and noms down quantities of food that boggle my mind, and some days he forgets to eat for half the day.  Generally speaking, he gets hungry and if he notices it, he eats – for him it’s a simple thing.  He does not stress about it or spare a moment’s thought to whether this bite of food will wind up on his ass for eternity because he does not have to.  His body efficiently uses and processes what he eats and according to doctors his weight has been within the perfect range for his height for his entire life.

Obviously this is not the experience for most people, though I believe the condition in which he lives is slightly more common in men than women – probably something to do with the metabolic activity of muscle mass and women having a biological need to store fat where men do not.

Regardless of what your personal diet may be, whether it’s the simple hunger = food style of my husband or an agonized analysis of every bite like mine – if you choose to share your diet with others, there is going to be somebody criticizing you.  The moment you find a food product you are thrilled about and attempt to tell somebody about it, they will probably respond by telling you it has too much and/or too little salt/sugar/fat/fructose/lycopene/enzymes/calcium/fiber/lack-of-fiber/potassium/meat/no-meat/etc. etc. etc. on and on ad infinitum.

Whatever you are eating, if you share it with people, you can and will find someone telling you it’s a bad idea.  I once had someone tell me I was fat because I frequently eat instant oatmeal for breakfast.  I once had someone tell me they gained weight because they ate six grapes that week.  I am not making this stuff up.

I have been told that nuts, olive oil and avocadoes can all be eaten in as vast quantities as I like because although they are packed with fat, its vegetable fat and thus I won’t gain weight from it.  I have been told that I should never eat more than a few grams of ANY kind of fat per day if I ever want to be slender.  I have been told that I should never let a single bite of white cane sugar or white flour pass my lips – ever.  It is poison.  If I eat any of it ever I am consigning myself to a life of obesity, diabetes and sugar/wheat addiction deliberately induced in me by the FDA who just wants to sell product at the expense of my health.  I have been told that I eat too much fruit and I should stop, because the natural sugar (fructose) that it contains is very bad for me.  I have been told to eat more protein because it will make me feel full longer, I have been told that any and all animal protein is the devil’s ambrosia which is clogging my arteries and strangling my heart.  I have been told that the human animal is NOT in fact an omnivore and we were never meant to eat the flesh of other beasts.  I have been told that fish oil is the cure for all ills, I have been told that the mercury in fish is going to put me in an early grave.  I have met people who literally live on iceberg lettuce with no dressing and nonfat yogurt every day for lunch, I have been told that eating iceberg lettuce is a waste of time because it contains no nutrition.  I have met skinny people who are skinny because they eat two fast food chicken nuggets at lunch time and are full.  I have to live with society in general still thinking that those people are healthier than me – because what you look like is all that counts.  I have been told that no matter what else I eat, I’m never ever going to lose any weight if I don’t STOP EATING ALL SALT!  THIS INSTANT!

I willingly open myself up to this.  I’m a health blogger and I’m obsessed with learning about nutrition.  I bring up the topic with people because I am curious about what they do.  Sometimes I just get excited about something and want to share.

Nothing, and I mean nothing, will take the wind out of your sails faster than sharing an aspect of nutrition you’re excited about and having someone slap it down as flat out wrong.  So before you get excited and share, use some caution.

Personally I have decided that only one thing is absolutely true: the right thing for you will be unique to you.  If it works for you, don’t let anyone tell you it’s wrong.  You have to experiment and try new things to find it.  I can’t say as I’ve absolutely found mine because I’m still fat.  Maybe I’m simply meant to discover that my size and my health are not interlinked and that my body already looks the way it should when I’m healthy, I don’t know.  Because I do not like the way fat looks on me, that idea is a very difficult and bitter pill for me to swallow.

I’m just imploring people to tread lightly.  And on the flipside, if someone is happy about something and sharing it with you, try not to dismiss it – they may be offering you one of the puzzle pieces that you actually do need to find the dietary living style that’s right for you, and for your completely unique body.

Friday, November 30, 2012

I May Be Gleeked Out

I admit it.  I’ve been a big fan of Glee since about the second episode of season one, but I may be getting close to my stopping point now.

Last season saw the graduation of most of the original class.  Despite thinking that I would miss them, I was excited to see if the show could survive a rotation to new cast members and their new stories.  I’m particularly a big fan of Samuel Larsen and Damian Mcginty (the first winners of the Glee project) and I was looking forward to seeing them featured in greater proportion.

So when this season began I was surprised to see a branched off storyline involving two of the graduated characters (Kurt and Rachael) in New York city, but since they were two characters I loved, I was pleased as well.

My pleasant surprise turned to dismay however, when instead of developing existing characters, the writers began to pile on new ones like a ravenous guy at a buffet overfilling his plate.  To make matters worse, the new ones who are receiving most of the air time, are incredibly boring.

Marley (who I referred to for a long time as “hat girl” because I couldn’t remember her name) is basically Bella from Twilight.  She’s unspeakably gorgeous and all the guys desperately want and fight over her, but she spends all her time in total, self-absorbed contemplation of her own inadequacies anyway.  But it’s okay that she’s vapid and shallow, because she’s so sweet.

I desperately want her to go away.

I’m slightly more interested in her evil counterpart Kitty, but mostly because she’s vaguely funny and fun to hate.  She still lacks the depth and bite that Santana or Quinn had.  Quinn was another character I thought was desperately under-utilized anyway and consistently portrayed in a horrible light, I frequently wondered if the actress who played her didn’t go home and sock the crap out of her pillow every week in frustration.

There’s a Puck-replacement character (his apparently secret little bother?  Um… okay) who is again only vaguely interesting.  They’ve also inserted the most current winner of the Glee project who manages to be about as intriguing as a slice of white bread.  I have no idea what his character’s name is because I fast forward through his dialogue.

And that’s it.  The overstuffed, bloated scripts are managing to give air time to basically these four, extremely boring new characters as well as some to Kurt and Rachael in NYC.  Everyone else is set dressing.

Samuel, my favorite actor on the show, can be glimpsed on occasion trying way too hard to be noticed in the back of group scenes or song numbers, and Damian is just gone this season without a trace.

Yes, there are still good things.  Yes it’s interesting that they added an overweight character in Marley’s mom – however, it would be lovely to see an overweight character whose allowed to have a single conversation that isn’t completely about her weight.  As with all other characters in media of that size, she’s not a character, she’s a fat character.  Every story in which she appears is about nothing but the size of her body.  And as always, for me, that’s just not good enough anymore.

Yes the Kurt and Rachael in NYC storyline is interesting and good, and Kate Hudson as the addition of an evil dance instructor is outright amazing.  Sarah Jessica Parker as Kurt’s boss at Vogue isn’t half bad either.

But overall it’s just too much.  Way too much going on to really focus on anything, way too much stupid camp, and way too much mean spirited humor.

Isn’t one of the main themes of Glee supposed to be that it’s not okay to bully anyone?  Yes, absolutely, unless they’re Christian in which case – enjoy!  I’m mostly referring to the persistent desire on the part of the writers to find the characters with the worst behavior possible and slap that label on them so that everyone can point, laugh and say, “look how awful they are!”  If they were doing that to any other religious group, well – heck there’s no point in speculating because they wouldn’t do that to any other religious group.  This has always been the case (I’ve even blogged about it before) but it’s actually managed to get worse this season.

This week’s past episode was vaguely enjoyable, and I realized pretty early into it that was because it was the Thanksgiving episode and most of the original cast was there bringing back their old magic.  Next week though they’ll mostly be gone again, leaving us with Hat-Girl, Puck-Jr, Danny Zuko and Faux-Quinn.

And I’m just not interested anymore.

I desperately tried to send feedback to the writers of the show, but after searching (and searching, and searching) could find no way to do that.  They seem to have a deep aversion to feedback from fans.

So I’m putting my disappointment in the only spot I can – here on my blog.

I’m sad and I miss my Glee.