Tuesday, May 24, 2011

My 10 week challenge

I've decided enough is enough, andrea. I'm tired of listening to myself talk and complain about how I look knowing that if I made a few changes here or there, I could probably be where I want to be.

Now don't get me wrong. I don't want to lose 40 pounds, nor do I need to. Most would argue I don't need to lose any weight, but it's not about the "you" out there, it's about me. I'm not happy with how I look, but I'm also no hating how I look. I know that I feel better if I were lighter. I've been there before. Remember that 10 day Master Cleanse? Yeah, I lost 10 pounds and I was amazed by how good I felt I looked. I even got from my family that I looked "too" skinny. But honestly, I felt good, I felt that I looked good and that's what mattered. For a precious month (before I started to gain the weight back) I didn't think about my weight. It was almost a non-issue and it was SO nice to have that weight off my chest...I suppose the pun is appropriate.

I've been trying to get back to that weight and I was getting there slowly but surely. Then I hurt my foot. Man, I can do A LOT of damage in six weeks of NOT working out. I mean, I've not gained 10 pounds, heck probably just about 6, but that's 6 pounds I had struggled to lose. Pounds don't come off as easily on me as it might on others.

I realized after training for my 10k that I like challenges...and training. I challenged myself with the Master Cleanse, and last summer, I challenged myself with going vegan for 2 weeks. This will be however, a 10 WEEK challenge. It's nothing crazy, it's just working out regularly, eating better, and cooking more. I'm wanting this routine to turn into a habit the way running had turned into a habit.

So these are the parameters: Starting Monday, memorial day I will:
* Work out daily, perhaps even twice a day (I don't have a job.)
* I will allow myself 1 savory and 1 sweet treat a week.
* I will allow myself 1-2 alcoholic beverages a week.
* I will try to cook at least twice a week for dinner, if not more.
* Cut out dairy and sugar. (Does agave count?)

My goals:
* I'd like to lose 10-15 pounds, but ideally one pound a week.
* Get stronger for dancing and running
* I'd like to eat between 1200-1400 calories, depending.
* Drink lots of water!

Overall Goals:
* Run another 10k this summer
* Run a half marathon next summer
* Run a marathon eventually (???)
* Cycle around the Gorge or something equally cool!

So that's my goal starting this Monday. I want it to be flexible enough and close enough to my reality to just work its way in. These are things I've wanted to do for a long time (cook more) so I just want to make sure I'm cooking the right things.

So any tips, advice, suggestions and RECIPES are totally welcome. You have a great bean salad recipe, let me know! You know how to make the most delicious oven baked chicken breast, please tell me!

This is me just kicking ME in the pants. No one can change my life but myself, so here I go!

Monday, May 23, 2011

For those who love Law and Order

I'm a huge crime show fan. My crime show of choice is Law and Order: SVU. I started watching it while homesick in Mexico the Fall after graduation. Howerver, about a year after back to back hours of rape, kidnapping and all crimes against woman and children, I grew a more than usually sensitive heart and stopped watching. A few years later, I'm back. I just love them, I'm not sure why. Perhaps its the mysery of solving a crime, of justice being served or just knowing that there are literally crazy people who think that kind of behavior is normal. I dunno.

So it all started at 3:00am Sunday night. We'll come back to that. (I'm going to be vague on the details just in case.) I wake up Sunday morning from a panic dream. It's not the first one this week, but this time I was late for a party and everyone was waiting for me and my cousin was in the shower so I couldn't get in. Yes, I know for some this is no big deal but for me...that's stressful! So fling off my blankets when I finally wake up and say to my self "Ugh, I'm done sleeping!" and get out of bed in a hurry. Suddenly, I realize I'm super dizzy and bounce around my room like a ping pong ball to the bathroom. "What is wrong with me?!" I ask myself!

After bathroom duties I hop back into bed where I decide to watch the season finale of Bones. OMG, don't get me STARTED on that!

Halfway through, my mom calls: "Nena, are you ok?" she says with concern. I'm slightly annoyed cuz um duh, of course I am. I only just saw you about 10 hours ago (I picked her up at the airport late the night before, then I went straight home to watch my boyfriend JT host SNL. What?) So she proceeds with the story:

I thought it was a dream, she says. In the middle of the night, my cell phone rang. When I listened to the voice mail, I heard someone say "Hi Ma...". I thought it was a dream. So, I was in the shower and I thought to myself, 'Wait a second, was that a dream?' So after the shower, I go to my room and look at my phone. It's not where I usually leave it at night (Mom and I are very systematic about our patterns.) and I saw there was a voice mail, so I check it and it sounds like a young girl...It sounded like you. So are you ok?!

I tell her yes. And finally when she's 100% I did NOT call her at 3:00am last night in the middle of the "freakin woods", she tells me more of the voice mail: "freakin woods", *"juan", "van with no windows" and she says it sounds like someone takes the phone away from her and that's the end of the voice mail.

I tell her we need to call the police and I know she won't do it. So I tell her I'm going to eat breakfast, take a shower and head over. I'm supposed to head over anyway for my nephew's award ceremony, so I don't want to go back and forth.

As I finish up bones and breakfast and am in the shower, panic sets in: what if this is time sensitive, what if she really was kidnapped and here I am, taking a shower. I freak out. I throw on my clothes, pack my make-up bag and rush out the door.

Upon entering my mom's house I listen to the voicemail. The gist of it is this girl is pregnant (!!!), she moved away with *Juan, who got her pregnant but now she's scared and she doesn't know what to do, she's in the middle of the "freakin woods" in *Mississippi, and she's scared and she doesn't know where *Juan is taking her and she's in a van with no windows not knowing where she's going. Then she says "just..." and the phone rustles and its over. I check the ID: unknown. I check the time: 3:00am exactly.

I call a friend who is a social worker and she advises me to call the non-emergency hotline. I do. The woman there is very sympathetic but says there isn't really much information to go on, but to call a state patrol agency in *Mississippi. I pick one that's open on weekends and talk to a woman there. She says the same thing, but tells me to call their Bureau of Investigation Monday.

Now, it's Monday and I call. The gentleman was very helpful. I gave him my mom's cell number, my cell number and he said that he'd look into some missing person's case. He said that if she is of age, there is nothing he can do, but if they find that she is underage, then they'd need to get the voice mail message. He said that if he didn't hear from me in a couple days, then to not worry. I said ok.

And that was that. Wow. I just hope, whatever it is, it turns out ok or to be nothing...Crazy crazy Sunday!

Note: * Means info has been changed.

Friday, May 13, 2011

Letting go

Ok, I know I'm getting ahead of myself. I always seem to do that regardless of what my rational brain says. I do it with job interviews and with dates.

You see, this last month I finally came to a conclusion about what direction I want to go in my life. There are two goals I have right now: write my parents' story and another one (ok, yeah I'm lame, but I'm going to keep that to myself for now.)

Both of them require me to get a full-time job and after almost a year of being unemployed, I am very ready to have some sort of schedule.

I've decided that I don't really care what kind of job I get as long as I enjoy it, enjoy the people and get benefits. This will entail me to take the classes I need to take for either my MFA (for my parents' book) or the other thing.

So that's where I'm at. I've also been looking at getting a couple part times, since I can't seem to get a full time.

However, I just interviewed for a job as a floater at a pretty prestigious animation studio. She insisted that no matter what, its getting my foot in the door and getting contacts. She said she likes to learn what other interests potential candidates have so that she can better place them. Things in my mind got turned upside down. This is not what I had in mind...but my mind, regardless, is racing with ideas and new opportunities. Even though it would mainly be reception (and the pay is MUCH BETTER than what I've seen out there for office jobs) I could potentially move and grow into another position.

I told her idea number two and how I'd like to be more involved in the art department and see what works. I told her organizing and coordination are my bread and butter but I'd really like to see and try out different departments. She seemed open to that and she seemed to like me. So basically, I would be in a pool of receptionists in case they need me to come in just for the day, or for a few weeks. I mean, it is something...its not what I had in mind, but its something.

I suppose my fear too is that I'd get comfortable and end up not pursuing idea #2 because I have *enough* money and I'm content...but I dunno. I just had this epiphany that perhaps coordination and producing is not what I want to do, perhaps being involved in the art process is? We shall see.

So basically, its good to have a plan, an idea, but at the same time, if opportunity knocks on my door in a different disguise, then perhaps I just need to let go and let opportunity wash over me...but it's scary. Uncertainty, plain and simple, is scary.