What is a "bottom line"???

According to Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia, there are numerous "bottom lines"...a biweekly alternative newspaper at the University of California Santa Barbara, the running scores and news for ESPN (the ticker at the bottom of the screen); net income (revenue minus costs and expenses); music venue in New York City's Greenwich Village; a World Wrestling Entertainment syndicated television show; catch phrase of Stone Cold Steve Austin and John Vespa; a publishing company...and my backside!!!!

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

For Entertainment Only...

Okay--it's Tuesday afternoon, I am getting ready to change my clothes and hit the pavement.  Was doing some final checking of email and ran across this...from the DoesThisBlogMakeUsLookFat.com.  I hope that this will give you a chuckle or two...

Ingredients for the Perfect Fitness Pal

1. Slightly larger butt than you.

2. No schedule conflicts so when you want to exercise she's available.

3. Has free passes to the local gym, fun fitness classes, Starbucks.

4. Sense of Humor

5. Gets that she's not the "trainer" and if you have a cramp you have a cramp.

6. Some days she'll let you know you're "perfect" at your current weight.

7. Some days she'll talk about her recent weight loss - which inspires yours as well.

8. Some days she'll agree - let's just use those Starbucks coupons and forget the workout.

9. She'll be disappointed if you can't work out - which makes you find the time.

10. She's not a complainer.

11. Her workout clothes don't match and consist of a BIG SHIRT and gross leggings - like yours.

12. She's Bob from Biggest Loser.

I would have to say that my ideal list order would look a bit different...but have included some comments here...

First on the list would have to be a sense of humor.  I cannot always laugh at myself...so I would need someone who would do this..and allow me to find the humor in the way I use a machine or how ridiculous I might look in Zumba class.  The fact that she's not a complainer will be a huge plus, too...because goodness knows I can complain with the best of the best.  (And this could be the primary reason that she will need aforementioned sense of humor--to keep from pushing me into oncoming traffic!).

Secondly, it would have to be the Bob comment...if I dare had Jillian, I would probably have to resort to some sort of violence at some point (like when she jumped on my back, for example!).  However, I doubt that Bob would wear some gross workout attire...hmmmm....And I am pretty sure that Bob wouldn't allow me to bypass any workouts...for Starbucks or any other excuse.  Maybe #12 on the list is not my #2...

All in all, this list is all inclusive with what my ideal workout partner would be like...and I think that we can all relate.  However, since I have yet to meet her (at least "her" that is geographically desirable and conducive to my workouts), I will just have to depend on me...Hopefully I can dig deep to find that sense of humor...

Hope you had a great Tuesday!!!

Monday, July 19, 2010

Life is Good!!!

You know, too often (really too often in my case) , I get bogged down in my own family,  work, or self-created drama. I realize this and even as I am having a moment (or ten), I am aware. I become too wrapped up in my own life and every little thing that is bothersome or is causing me worry and anxiety…is really small stuff…not even worth a blip on the cosmic radar screen, really. I have a job, a house, and family that loves and supports me. I have read too many stories out here in Blogland of real tragedies, real mishaps, real life…that have brought me to tears and may me realize that I am one of “those” people…too caught up in my own drama to take note and smell the roses and be thankful for what I have vs. the Have Nots. So for any of you that have read my blog and found it to be a whiney, self-absorbed piece of junk (and you are still here), I apologize. I can’t promise that I won’t digress and move back toward that line of thinking—but I hope that you will help me keep it all in check.

Last week (not going to make any excuses…I was a slacker!) was not one of my best weeks. However, in the interest of full disclosure and needing to hold myself accountable for all of my actions, it’s in the books. As someone’s blog read (and I apologize if you are reading this now…and I cannot give you due credit), there are no excuses! I cannot think of any…except that one night I was not feeling well…really, really severe migraine headache (okay, well, we know that exercise creates endorphins, and I would have likely felt better and at least earned some self platitudes, if I would have worked out). I didn’t. The scale was none too friendly this week, either. Another pound…in the wrong direction! Dang it! Again, I accept total responsibility. So, I am going to make the following goals (along with my plan of action to help get there!) for myself this week…

  •  Bring my lunch at least three times this week (no less eating out!!!)
    •  I have stocked up on frozen meal
    •  I have bread for sandwiches, if needed
  • Exercise must be a priority…this should be number 1, most likely!!!
    • Bring workout clothes to work so that I can change and hit the pavement before going home. I find that it’s way too easy to go home, eat dinner, and then hit the sofa…without doing what I know should be done!!
    • I will work out three times before Thursday!!!! (Sidenote: We are leaving for Kentucky on Thursday evening for a weekend at HullabaLOU in Louisville…I am excited (live music is a love of mine...all kinds of music, but at these particular shows, I will get to see Bon Jovi, Kenny Chesney, Dierks Bentley, and Jason Aldean) and know if nothing else I will sweat, sweat, sweat...
  • Posting here
    • No excuses!!! No excuses!!! No excuses!!
    • I get on the computer and read my entertainment news, and read all of the blogs I follow, I can certainly provide something…anything!
However for some good news about the past week…I did get in contact with a professor from  Previous Academic Institution and found out that should when I pass the CPA exam, gain my 2000 hours under another Certified Public Accountant, I will only need six more upper level accounting courses to gain my licensure. Why is this good news? Because I thought that I was either going to have to apply to Graduate School (which actually scares the dickens out of me on all levels…monetarily (it would cost almost as much as my entire undergraduate degree), professionally (when would I have time to complete the coursework?)…talk about pressure! Anyway, turns out that the ambiguous language from the Secretary of State’s website was not all that mysterious…I just need two more 3-hour upper level Accounting courses…WOO-HOO!!!

Saturday, some of the gals (We call ourselves "The Gang") and me went for an all girls boating adventure. It was an adventure (weather was not exactly the most cooperative, but there was still fun to be found on the lake...heck if there's no fun around, we make our own!)!  I will be the first to admit that I had little to no faith in our ability to complete it (the normal Boatmaster was at National Guard drill)…but we (Okay, really one gang member did it--the rest of us just did what she told us) did it! (Okay, I did nothing except sit on the boat and get into the water)…but our fearless Captainess of the vessel (The AquaHolic--I love the name.  Fearless Captainess came up with the name about four years ago, but was only recently reassured that it was a most terrific name for a boat that is on the water virtually every weekend!!!!) was awesome!!! She navigated everything from getting the boat out of the garage, hitched to the truck, into the water, drove us around on the lake, and then out of the water, on the trailer, hitched back to the truck, and home again! She’s who I want to be when I grow up…oh yeah, she knows how to drive a stick shift, too!!! I have included pics of us me at the lake (gasp! in a swimsuit no less!!!!  I didn't include the other gals to protect their identity, since I knew if I asked to use their swimsuit photos I would be told a resounding #?*! no (you insert the expletive of choice))…not our my most beautiful moment…but we always have a camera around to capture a good laugh! (And hopefully Bud Light will pay some endorsement money!)

I also met Tammy (from From Fat to Fab ) for lunch on Sunday. I went through my closets (yes, you read that correctly—I have clothes in every closet in our house…that translates into lots and lots of clothing…too much really!) and passed along some of my (hope to be) left behind treasures. I have made a promise to myself (okay, this was just today…but I passed it along to Tammy, and hopefully she will help me out and hold me accountable)that whenever I buy anything new, I must get rid of one item (one in, one out). I hope to accomplish two things—1) Make my husband happy that there is closet space for something besides my wardrobe…I don’t know, a jacket or a coat, or something that might belong to him not belong to me; and 2) Pass along some real gems (or what I think they are, anyway) to someone else. So, the first bagful (and it was a Glad trashbag full--not because it was trash--but because that was the biggest bag I could find...) was handed off to Tammy on Sunday. I learned that out of the bag, she did get a few things…but she also paid it forward.

So, while it was not my best week of record...it certainly was still okay.  I hope will do much better this week...

Remember--"What lies behind us and what lies before us are tiny matters compared to what lies within us"--Ralph Waldo Emerson

Make everyday count!

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Hard work does pay off...

Sorry about the delay in getting this next post out and about...but the past week has been all about some hard work.

My parents always told us (me and my sister) growing up that if you want something...you earn it.  And when you are younger, it's all about  money.  I realize that they did this to help teach us fiscal responsibility and pride in personal ownership.  One of my youngest memories is going to the bank with my Mom and opening a savings account.  I would proudly put my allowance ($2 a week) into that savings account and was amazed and shocked when I had saved over $100.  When I got my first job at McDonald's, I earned something like $3.75 an hour to basically be the janitor of the store.  I was only 15, so I couldn't actually do something like handle money or bag orders.  But it was all good--it was all about me and those paychecks that I would so proudly take to the bank on a weekly basis.   Once I turned 16, I got a better paying job (what? say it isn't so!) at Six Flags in the Admissions department.  Now, Six Flags is a seasonal employer, so no overtime is paid.  I would proudly work 40, 50, and on rare occasions 60 hours a week for my paycheck there...and loved, loved, loved that job!  (Sidenote:  I must have--because I continued working there all through high school and into my freshman year of college...I drove home every weekend to go to work at Six Flags!  How crazy is that?).  I tell you all of that to help demonstrate that I am not adverse, allergic, afraid (or any other word that starts with an "a") of hard work...I guess you can say that it's kind of second nature for me.

Not that you asked for a resume of my past employers...but I thought that I should share that I do not come from an independently wealthy family or have any false sense of entitlement.  I believe that in order to value the things that are most important--you to have to earn them.  I know that for the person that I am today, I have earned many badges and paid many dues.  And I think that probably all of the most valuable, prized lessons I have learned have been through sheer work and determination.

For example, Wonderful Husband often tells me that he wishes that we would have met years before we did.  However, I know me...and know that had I met him at any point before I was ready, I would not appreciate the man that he is.  I would have likely overlooked him entirely, because I was not ready to work for the relationship.   See, I truly believe that everything happens for a reason and that I had to go through a phase called, "starter" marriage (see, some folks buy "Starter Homes" as their first home...well, I had a "starter" marriage...a complete debacle which is another whole post for another time!).  Suffice it to say, "SM" was one of the most tragic mistakes of my life--but it was a life lesson that I had to learn on my own...no one could tell me (I knew best at age 27!)...no one could lend me advice (I loved him!)...and certainly no one could bail me out of the financial ruin and mental devastation that I experienced six months into it (Thankfully Mom and Dad didn't tell me "I knew it!").  But with hard work (and more than my share of frogs (not that I kissed them!), I found my Prince...and he's truly one of a kind.  He's my biggest supporter, my sounding board, my personal chef, and most of all, the most rational and understanding person I know (If you don't want an honest answer, you had better not ask the question!).  I love him more and more as each day passes.  

The same applies to weight loss, for me, too.  I think that I have to work hard for each and every victory (on the scale and otherwise) to be able to appreciate where I have come from.  I do get bogged down with the scale (I am obsessed...I weigh each and every day!) and often feel depressed or upset when I don't see instant results.  I almost feel like if I work  hard today, then the scale had better show it tomorrow!  And this just isn't always the case for me.   Case in point, the scale actually reflected a .5 lb. gain last week.  However, my clothes are fitting a bit differently due to all of the walking that I had been doing (since the Peachtree I haven't quite been on the wagon yet...but there's tomorrow!).  People at work have noticed...friends that have seen pictures have noticed...so I know that my hard work is paying off...just not the jackpot winnings that I would like...but a small payout is nothing to be shunned.  After all it's all about the journey--and goodness knows, this is no sprint!!!  I am committed to this process (that is obviously lasting a little bit longer than I would like...because I am all about instant gratification).

Anyway...to recap this past week...
  • The scale showed a .5 lb. gain.  I am hopeful that this will be gone this week...there's still four days 'til the next official weigh in at Weight Watchers
  • I did drink lots and lots of water...but there's always room for improvement there, as well.
  • I only walked two nights last week...so hopefully there will be much room for improvement there, too.
My goals for this week...
  • Post a loss...no matter how small, a loss is a loss...
  • Continue with the water.  I need to find my large water bottle and take it to work with me (it's 32 oz., so I have to walk to the cooler a few less times to get maximum hydration)
  • Need to step up the exercise...I did walk quite a bit at Lake Winnepesaukah (went to see my favorite, Chris Young perform not once, but twice...picture below); not to mention the heat and humidity!  So, I will say work out three times before Saturday's weigh in (that would be Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday!)

  • Do more frequent postings on here...No excuses!!!
Until next time...keep on keeping on!

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Two Roads...

"Two roads diverged in a yellow wood,
And sorry I could not travel both
And be one traveler, long I stood..."
That's how one of my favorite poems of all times begins...and I know this because I had to memorize it back in the ninth grade (thank you, Ms. McDaniel...for it's one of the lessons that I most reference, even today...). I am sure that you know it...but it helps me to type it here. The poem, "The Road Not Taken" by Robert Frost.

 This is kind of me...kind of where I am.  There are many decisions that I have to make---and for anyone who knows me, this does not come easily or naturally.  I tend to overthink, overanalyze, and will absolutely, positively, second guess most every decision I make.  The only decision that I can think of that I readily made with wreckless abandon was when Wonderful Husband proposed to me.  (Yes, I was in shock...but I said YES! almost immediately).  Any and every other decision causes me to waiver, lose sleep over, and totally second guess myself.  Trust me, while in college, I could know the material inside and out--but left to my own devices on a multiple choice test, I would talk myself out of a correct answer most of the time.  I guess some may call that yielding to pressure, lack of self confidence, lack of (true) knowledge...whatever it is, it terrifies me to think that I will make a wrong choice.  How idiotic is that?  Most choices are not life altering decisions--choosing what to wear to work (ultimately with nearly three closets full of clothes, this is a daily chore when getting ready for work), what to have for dinner (problem is usually averted because Wonderful Husband cooks dinner just about every night), what route to take to work, which lane at the grocery store...the meaningless (little) decisions are endless.  So what is one to do when confronted with a potentially life altering decision???  (Avoidance...think about it another day...).

So, let me think about the most recent decisions I have made...
  1. The decision to start back on a healthy eating plan.  This was easy enough...I know that I feel way better when eating and exercising the way that I should.  I tend to gain confidence when someone notices something positive in me.
  2. The decision to make a potential commitment to (hopefully definitely) change my career path.  Since most don't know me, my journey to complete my undergraduate business degree was a long (and I like to think distinguished one...albeit costly).   So, when I graduated, the last thing I wanted to do was pursue a post-graduate degree or put in the work to a CPA designation.   Well, I am almost 100% convinced that I need to do something to better myself...and this is for me.  Not necessarily more money (per se) but for personal professional satisfaction.  I am still completing research which includes a call to the Secretary of State's office tomorrow that will help solidify my course of action.
  3. The decision to start this blog.  I have been reading many blogs as of late...each one brings its own unique take and information.  While I don't profess to know each and every one you as my new BFF--I feel like we share a sort of connection.  I am so happy that I finally took the time to start this adventure (and therapy session).  I have a newfound appreciation for all of you that post each and every day...Wow!  I just don't know how you do it...but am willing to learn.
  4. The decision to sign up for another 10K...on Labor Day (US 10K Classic).   This one will be another challenge...and while it's big, the turnout won't be nearly as big as Peachtree Road Race was.  I have done this event...2 years ago.  But by signing up for this today--will help ensure that I continue on my exercise plan.  (It's on the calendar in pen...because active.com does not refund registration fees!).  I did pay extra for the time chip...so this will allow me to work to trim time off of my previous 10K, which is all that I really aspire to do.
Well, those are four decisions that I have made recently...some a bit more serious and have a bit more impact to my life as I know it now...but all in all I hope that these decisions are the right ones--if not, then I will just have to make another decision...So, if you want to know the entire poem (well worth the read, I promise)...you should go and look it up online...the best lines (which happens to be the end)...
"Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference."
Hoping that this week is still great for you...Until next time...

Monday, July 5, 2010

Another week--another half pound...

Well, the beginning of July began with a half pound gone, a total of 22 miles walked (for the week...including completing the Peachtree Road Race; a 10K in Atlanta, if you are not familiar), and lots of fireworks, food, family and friends. 

To start, let me say that I have been a paying member of Weight Watchers since April of 2008.  And when I am active, the plan is the best one that I have found.  My biggest obstacle--me, myself and I.  When I am on plan, I am on it 100%.  When I am off of it--well, I am equally dedicated.  Obviously, I am an all or nothing kind of gal.

I have recently re-dedicated and re-focused all attention to the plan.  In addition to Weight Watchers, I have started actively tracking all things on www.sparkpeople.com.  I think that it's good for me to see another perspective on how things work.  And since I have a near and dear friend who lost over 100 lbs. by watching her intake (low carbs, limited sugar), I thought this "fresh" approach might help me.   Anyway...since I have been diligently on plan, I have lost a total of 4 lbs. (that's over two weeks).  I am happy with that loss--and can only hope that the trend continues.

Secondly, all of the walking...it's been reassuring to see that there is a direct correlation to weight loss and exercise.  Well, duh...I guess that I knew that...(a lesson that I have learned way more than once).  Anyway--this was reaffirmation for me.   And with my Garmin heart rate monitor, I get the super satisfaction (when walking outside--not inside on the treadmill) of being able to download the information and see instantaneously the fruits of my labor.  And I have busted it over the past month or so...knowing that I had the 10K coming up on July 4th.  Anyway...more activity, hopefully more weight loss...(FINGERS CROSSED)...

That takes us to the Peachtree Road Race, yesterday.  This was my second year participating.  Let me explain this to you...there are approximately 55,000 folks participating.  Yep, it's a massive event.  But all things considered, it is super organized.   We had a group of six of us participating.  Unfortunately, we were not all in the same start wave (the first runners were off at 7:30), my start time was at 8:42 (so, yes, there were already people meeting us at my mile 2 with their coveted Peachtree Road Race t-shirts and swag bags in hand).  However, for all of the other races (numerous 5Ks, 2 other 10Ks, and a half-marathon), there is nothing like the atmosphere of this one.  People (supporters, neighbors, family????) line all 6.2 miles to cheer, yell, holler (and is some instances provide adult beverages to those that need/want them).  There's music blaring, bands playing the chosen patriotic anthems, confetti flying, sprinklers spraying...everything.  It's the most fun I have ever had walking 6.2 miles.  And to beat all, I finished beating last year's time by 5 minutes.  (Okay, so it was the winning 27:52 time that won the race...but it was a personal best for a 10K).  This is my only goal...to attempt to beat my previous 10K time...so it was a success all the way around.  Plus, I was there to celebrate with other Chicas that completed this milestone.  And did I mention the t-shirt?  Well, there's a pic pre-race picture (above) and post-race (below) with THE t-shirt... Again, I cannot wait until next year's race!!!!

Post race festivities included good food, good times, and not-so good smells.  I didn't take anything to change into...so had only my trophy tee to put on...which I did.  Luckily no one at the cookout mentioned my horrific body decaying ripe smell.  However, upon my return home, my husband promptly encouraged that I take a shower...quickly.  

Then, today I met a new friend for lunch...What a great experience that was.  It was my favorite cuisine--Mexican with a new favorite person of mine!  Who would have thought the Internet could lead to what I hope is a long lasting friendship?!?!?!?  (Nevermind that the world wide web was the catalyst that allowed me to meet my husband.  I am not sure why I doubt the technological advances of the world...Nothing should surprise me!).  Anyway...she's also the reason that this post is being made...her encouragement and my deciding that I would "just do it"...Here we are!

Here's to a great weekend...and an even greater week!