Manic…Tuesday?

Welp, I’m back on my meds again.  I had some left over from the last time I stopped taking them.  I’ve been feeling really anxious lately and have been noticing that I’m doing a lot more rituals.  I guess I can’t really call them rituals because I tend to make them up on the fly, whatever will ease the anxiety right at that moment.

I decided to go back on Zoloft again after I spent the majority of last week severely ill.  Actually, it all started right after I wrote about my moment of bliss.  I’m convinced that what started off as a little irritated stomach after a run turned into laying on the bathroom floor, too weak to call my parents to tell them I’m ok, was because of anxiety.

I wish I could say what has been making me so anxious but I don’t even know.  I mean, there are a few things, like possibly getting a new job, going through somewhat of a break-up, being overall confused about my life and where it’s going, but I didn’t think I was particularly stressed.  At least no more than I’ve been lately.  My body lets me know, though.  Always when it’s too late to do anything about it.

The worst thing is that I can no longer trust my body to not do this to me again.  There was a period in middle school when I would always work myself up over some event.  I would constantly think “Oh no!  Wouldn’t it be terrible if I was sick for that concert!?  I would disappoint so many people!”.  Well, guess what? Of course I made myself sick dwelling on that.  After many years of medication, therapy, and successful events where I came through completely healthy, I began to trust that I was over that.  I was over turning my mind against me.

But now, after these last two anxious-stomach episodes (my other one was pretty recent too) I can’t trust that I won’t do it to myself again.  I really don’t like being on medication.  I don’t feel like Zoloft really affects me negatively like others did, but I don’t like the idea of my personality not being 100% controlled by myself.  Hopefully I can teach myself to trust myself again (that’s a weird sentence to write!) and then I can get off of the meds again.

The medication also makes me feel really manic, at least when I’m starting it.  I noticed this the last time I started (which was my first time taking Zoloft).  My mind has been racing so much that I haven’t slept well in a couple days, and despite this I have plenty of energy during the day.  In fact, today at work I noticed that I was shaking my leg up and down while sitting at my desk.  It’s kind of like the high I get off of caffeine, except it lasts for days.  Now, don’t get jealous you caffeine fiends.  I don’t get a good high.  Luckily this side effect should go away soon.  At least it went away after about five days the first time.  Welp, off to bed I go!  I hope I can sleep tonight!

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Bliss

Ever have one of those moments when you feel like everything is just right?  Tonight I went for a walk as the sun was almost all the way down.  I was passing silhouettes of people on the street and even though we could barely make out each other’s features we still smiled at each other.  There was a slight breeze but the air was still warm, leftover from the heat of the day.  There is something so calm about Portland’s summer nights.  People are out, skipping down the street, playing their guitar at the food cart pod, but you can just feel a sense of peace and contentment.

On my way back down the hill that I happily climbed, I couldn’t help but break into a light jog.  It was pure enjoyment propelling down the hill, passing the old man who was watering his plants in the dark, and trotting past the beautiful tutor-style houses with gardens that are so beautifully manicured.  I couldn’t help but smile.  I closed my eyes for seconds at a time, feeling almost like I was flying.

Today, someone came back into my life at just the right time and told me things I really needed to hear.  I really do wonder if sometimes people come into our lives for a reason and it’s our own energies that do it.  (don’t worry, I won’t get all new-agey on you…yet)

It’s the moments like these that I love to relish.  They don’t last long enough.  Because soon you discover that running after eating a huge salad for dinner was not a good choice…but I won’t get into that and I’ll leave the story here.

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Fish Update

I had two bites of fish last week that my roommate cooked.  It wasn’t bad.  My stomach nor my conscience hurt, so that’s a plus.  I’m not too eager to eat it again but when the opportunity is right, it’ll happen.

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This is Nuts!

It’s a little scary how well I pull off the “crazy” face. What’s scarier is that I’m actually posting this picture.

 

As I sit here, at 10:39 at night, hard-boiled egg beside me, I think to myself: damn, I wish I ate meat.  I’ve been having this thought quite a bit lately as I’ve been out with friends, feeling hungry but not sure how to satisfy my talking tummy without eating yet another serving of nuts.  I’ve been eating a lot of nuts lately.  Go ahead, let your inner 12-year-old giggle.

I’m eating too many servings of nuts and the only other way I get a large amount of protein is from Greek yogurt (which I shouldn’t eat in the  evening because of the sugar qualities of milk) and eggs that I choke down.  Hence, the hard-boiled egg that now lay laptop-side.  I’m finding my body craving protein because of all the strength training I’m doing.  I’ve learned that some bodies are fueled better by carbs and some by protein.  Sadly, I think mine is protein.

So, I’ve come to the conclusion that I’m going to try to start eating meat again.  I think I’m going to just start with fish.  I still can’t handle the idea of consuming something with a nervous system…but at least fish have the least-developed nervous system out there, right?  I don’t know how I’m going to like it.  Back when I did eat meat, which was before third grade, I didn’t like fish one bit.  Maybe that was a “picky kid” thing though.  My roommate bought some tillapia and is going to cook it for me soon.  I’ll let you know how it goes.  In the meantime, I’m going to read up on what those magical vegan bodybuilders eat.  They must have some sort of black-market, underground protein pill or something.  That’s gotta be it.

On another note: I’m feeling a lot better today anxiety-wise.  I still don’t really know what that was all about but I really appreciate those friends who reached out to me.  You guys are awesome. 🙂

 

 

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OCD Day

I have an anxiety stomach ache today.  It’s the first one I can remember having in over two years.  I don’t really know what I’m so anxious about that would cause this, but it’s definitely here.

When I was in Elementary and Middle School I used to get stomach aches all the time.  It was a particular stomach ache that would involve really intense cramping about every five minutes which would cause me to roll on the floor in pain, crying.  As the day went on, the cramps would hit me closer and closer together.  (yes, like being in labor :p) I’ve learned over the years that the more calm I am after discovering the ache, the more mild my cramps will be.  Sometimes being distracted with friends does the trick of stopping it all together, but if it goes past a certain point there isn’t much I can do except to wait it out.

For years my family, doctor, and I thought I was eating something that was not agreeing with me.  I tried cutting out milk products, soy products, even products with certain chemicals in it (now I try not to eat any chemicals at all…but that was then).  Nothing helped.  I ended up losing a lot of weight in 7th grade because I was afraid to eat many things.  At the time I said it was because I was afraid of getting the excrutiating stomach aches, but in reality I was afraid of getting food poisoning from just about anything but pre-packaged food (because my biggest fear was throwing up).  This is how we discovered I had obsessive compulsive disorder.

I feel like I manage my OCD very well these days.  I’m not taking medication any longer and just yesterday I mentioned that I had OCD to my roommate in passing and she was completely surprised that I would ever have it.  Maybe that says something about the state of my room in the apartment? :p  But really, I hardly ever have overwhelming anxiety and sometimes my body will just surprise me out of nowhere with an anxious stomach.

I knew it as soon as I woke up this morning.  I tried to go into work, thinking that my anxiety was partly caused by an assignment at work that has been looming over me.  I knew that laying around the house avoiding the assignment wasn’t going to help, so I dragged myself to work, stayed for two hours, and had to come home.  There is only so much you can do when you’re bent over at your desk and worried that you won’t make it to the bathroom in time.

This evening I’m going to try to relax and confront any items that are causing me stress.  Though, really, I feel like nothing is blaring at me any more than usual.  I’ll just keep reminding myself that this is only temporary and that I will be back to normal life soon.  And for that I am very thankful.

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A Whirlwind of a Month

Adults really don’t teeter-totter as much as they should. It was great laughter therapy.

Dude.  It’s been a while.  There have been so many things going on in my life that I’ve intended to write about but I haven’t had a moment to rest in what feels like months.  I guess you could say I’ve been too busy “living in the now” to write about it.  So besides working and working out, this past month involved such adventures as: moving to a new apartment, randomly playing on a teeter-totter with friends at night, getting invited onto a French Canadian navy ship and karaoke-ing and dancing with some of the sailors, watching a friend get sawed out of handcuffs (It sounds more badass than it actually was.  It’s a good story.  Ask me sometime.), attending my first bachelor-ette party which involved a drag show and my first “male revue,” dancing with friends at clubs, getting tipsy at a cider festival where I approached  a man with an outrageous mustache, and dating.  Lots of dating.  I wish I could say that all of these activities were a result of me “living in the now” but that’s not entirely true.  I think I just tend to not turn down an invitation for an adventure.

This has taken a toll on me, though.

I have lost track of my goals, weight-wise a and life-wise.  I’ve also lost a lot of sleep.  But maybe all of these experiences I’ve been having are what life’s about.  I can’t help but feel completely lost, though, when I am constantly on the go.  Even the few rare hours that I have alone are filled with interactions with other people through facebook, text, and the online dating site that I’ve been using (I could write several  posts just on that subject).  When I was travelling in Europe I had my phone on airplane mode so that I wouldn’t get unnecessary charges and I could only use wi-fi when I found it.  It was hard at first but it began to feel really liberating after a while.  I began to really value my interactions with others and I actually had to plan a time a and a place that I was going to meet someone.  I had to follow-through.

Right before I started writing this post I disabled my online dating profile.  I’d still like to continue to date, but the distraction of always looking to see who is “checking me out” and “who’s a great match” has gotten to be too much.  I need to get back on track.  I want to look into going back to school and I definitely want to start pursuing another travelling adventure.  I can’t do these things when I don’t give myself time to think.

While from the outside it may look like what I have been up to this last month is living in the moment, but it was really quite the opposite.  I was having a great time but I think I’ve been too tired and busy to really even comprehend the fun I’ve been having. Don’t get me wrong, I’m going to continue to seek out new experiences, but I’m going to also make an effort to schedule some alone time and especially work on being comfortable with the time by myself.

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Aaaand, here’s another post.

Look! I got a haircut! It was a much-needed change. And yes, I love mascara.

Whoa, guys, whoa.  Guess what? I’m not perfect.  I know, it’s shocking.  (that was sarcasm…just so we’re clear)  Anyway, as you could probably tell if you’ve been reading my posts, I’ve been feeling pretty lost lately.  I find myself always thinking about the future and the past, and not very much about the present at all.  And that’s bad.  Because all we really have is the present.  To quote RENT: “There is no future, there is no past, I live this moment like it’s my last. [a few other thoughtful lines] No day but today.”  Whoops, I just let some nerd out.

Anyway, at the moment I have no idea how to live only in the present so I went to Powell’s books one day after work this week and picked up some guidance.  The first book I have started reading is “The Power of Now” by Eckhart Tolle.  I guess it’s a pretty widely known book and even Oprah has talked about it so it must be good……right? (more sarcasm)  Well, I’ve only read the first few chapters and it’s already blowing my mind away.  Quite literally, actually.  From what I’ve read so far, according to Tolle, the key to living completely peacefully in the present is to detach yourself from your mind.  Your mind is what is doing all of the thinking; talking to you in that little voice about lots of negative things and reminding you of the past and thinking about–usually worrying about–the future.

Tolle says the key to happiness and living in the now is to reach an enlightened state where you no longer use your mind to identify yourself and take on more of a “third party” perspective.  How do you do this?  Uh, good question.  It sounds difficult.  I haven’t read too much of the book yet but I’ll report back later.

In other news, I didn’t see my trainer either day this week due to…..uncontrollable sadness. There–I said it. But I have done a lot of walking and stayed clean on my diet.  Ok, I had a crouton, a fry, and a sip of hard cider tonight.  I’d call that pretty successful.  I can still feel my pants getting looser so that’s keeping me motivated to stay on track. Tomorrow I’m going on a hike with my friend Brian so that’ll be nice.  And very muddy. And I start sentences with “and” a lot even though it’s not proper.  And I must be in an odd mood because I did it again.  Aaaaand, I’m out.

Categories: Everyday Life, Personal Training, Positivity | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Putting on my big girl pants

No, the title of this post does not mean I am gaining weight, luckily.  It’s what my trainer mentioned to me when I used the “big girl barbell” the other day.  Some days, you need to just put on your big girl pants and get the job done.

This post is mostly a pep-talk for myself.  I had a very passionate pep talk written to myself when I was experiencing euphoria a little over a year ago after breaking up with my boyfriend (not because I was happy to lose him, but because I finally gained strength for myself) and after attending a women’s conference.  The timing of the conference was ideal.  Unfortunately, this pep talk I wrote to myself no longer exists after a fatal computer accident.  (The computer died, no humans were hurt, just so we’re clear.)

Anyway, it is times like this that I really wish I had this letter.  The letter basically told me that I can do whatever I put my mind to.  And this is true.  I just need to remind myself of it sometimes.

Today I am facing my biggest challenge so far.  Yes, I’ve travelled the UK solo when previously I was afraid of leaving the house, and yes, I got over my fear of vomiting, but today I need to actually face the fear of losing my first love.

I know I have already written about my ex and letting him go, and I’m sure my readers are tired of hearing about it, but I really need to do it now.  Apparently I didn’t believe it firmly enough when I said I needed to move on.  We had a long talk tonight and I truly do need to let him go.  It is not fair to him, his current relationship, or to me.  But how do I let go?  It’s way easier said than done.  It’s like one of those things where someone tells you”don’t look down” and the first thing you do is look down.  If I say “stop thinking about Ted” (I changed his name) then all I’m thinking about is Ted.  All day I have been saying to myself “Olga, let go.”  It makes me cry, which is not a good thing to be doing at work.  I do like the phrase “let go” though because it could apply to many things.  Letting go in general is a good thing.  Letting go of grudges, of stress, of exes… But I think I need to change my slogan to “Be the person you want to be.”  Somewhat ironically, Ted helped me come up with this slogan.

Right now I need to face the fact that my future is in my hands and he cannot be in that picture.  I am going to continue to grow and to push my boundaries, starting with facing the pain that’s associated with the fact that we will never be together.

I am so.very.tired.of being depressed.  I have lost that person that, despite her OCD, went to Europe alone and who was excited about all of the opportunities that awaited her.  I’m going to get her back.  I am strong.  I have accomplished so much, and I have much more to do.  I need to focus on myself and what I can do for the world.  I need to put on my big girl pants, firmly believe that I can accomplish whatever I put my mind to, and dream big.  Here I go.

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A Small Update

My new beautiful niece on the first day of her life!

As promised, here is a picture of my new niece.  Isn’t she beautiful!?  I mean, c’mon, how many newborns are this beautiful?  I’m not being biased…I don’t think….?

I feel like I have a lot to report but it’s so much that I don’t know where to start and have actually been kind of avoiding writing this post all day.  So, in order to actually sit down and write this, I told myself that I didn’t have to write everything.

Since this is partially a weight-loss blog, I’ll address how my training is going.  I think it’s going well!  My trainer took my measurements today so I can have a starting point but I feel like I’ve already made progress.  I can tell that when I put pants on they loosen up a lot sooner than they used to.  They’re not obviously too big yet, but I can feel a slight difference.  My trainer doesn’t really like scales, and neither do I.  We’re going to track my progress based on tape measurements, how my clothes are feeling, and improvements in my strength.  I’m already getting better at the “plank.”  Apparently my core needs a lot of work…..

My diet has been going really well too.  I really hate the word “diet” but it is the proper definition of the word: “The kinds of food that a person, animal, or community habitually eats.”  So, yeah, the diet is going well.  As I mentioned before, this seems way too easy, which kind of makes me nervous.  The goal of this diet, or way of eating, is to keep my blood sugar level as stable as possible, which means avoiding any high-carb foods and making sure I have a proper balance of proteins, fats, and carbs.  I’m finding that cutting out refined sugars has been really good for me and makes it so I don’t crave more sugar.  I’m really surprised by how I’m really not tempted to eat treats.  It’s been really relieving to not have to always be fighting my urges and to not constantly be feeling guilty about whatever I’m eating.  I’m still able to enjoy foods like nuts (which I wouldn’t really let myself eat before because of fat content) and I eat a lot of Greek yogurt, which I loooove.  I think my body is liking all of the protein I’ve been eating, too.  I’m pretty sure the reason I got to this size in first place was because I’ve been a vegetarian since 3rd grade and I’ve always replaced protein with carbs.  Well, this is a short post, but I’ll be back soon for more.  For now, it’s bedtime.  Work tomorrow!

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A Very Special Day

Today I got to watch my niece, Eva, be born.  Like, really watch.  I had a front row seat and it was amazing.  I’m so thankful that I was able to be there and that my sister was comfortable with me being there.  It was an experience I will never forget.  It truly is amazing what are bodies are capable of.

Speaking of which, I’ve been doing personal training! (Ooo, did you see that transition right there?  It was smooooth.  I’m sure this parenthetical clause makes it that much better.)  Yeah, I found a great personal trainer who seems to understand what I need and what I’m looking for.  I’ve started doing small group training with her twice a week while doing about three days of cardio on my own.  On top of that, I have started eating a special diet that includes only eating whole foods and only eating foods with a low glycemic index (so definitely no sugar and no grains except quinoa).  I’ve made  a huge effort to include protein in every meal, which is a big change from before.

The weird thing is, it’s all been going really well.  Yeah, I had a free piece of See’s candy today…but I wouldn’t call today a failure.  I’m not used to “diets” being so easy so I’m feeling wary that it’s not actually going to give me results.  I’m not used to not looking at calorie and fat content so I’m very paranoid that I’m going to check my measurements two weeks from now and find that I’ve actually gotten bigger!  It’s really sad that I feel like a diet has to nearly kill me in order for it to work, isn’t it?  I’ll be taking new measurements this week, hopefully tomorrow, and post them on here.  I’ll be interested to see if I’ve made any progress since the last time I took measurements, although I haven’t been seriously doing my new diet since about 4 days ago.

Side note: I am doing a lot better since my last post.  I am back to focusing on myself and my goals and not living in the past.  I still have moments of sadness, but I’m definitely functioning now.  I’ve also gotten amazing support from friends and family which has helped a ton.  Thank you to everyone!

Also: I will post a picture of my new niece once I get permission from her mom and dad. : )

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