Friday, January 13, 2012

Composing Blogs While I Run

As is known, I get up very early in the morning to exercise.  Usually by 4:20 a.m. I am sitting on my sofa, cup of coffee in hand, watching the news and maybe browsing Facebook or Pinterest.

Around 4:40 I get up and proceed to do whatever strength and core exercises are on the agenda for the day.  This takes anywhere from 20 minutes to half an hour.  Once finished, I take my Garmin outside, start it and then come back in to gear up for my run.

These dark and cold mornings the gearing up requires ear muffs, head lamp, gloves, jacket, and reflective vest, one 6 oz. bottle of water tucked into pocket, phone and keys.  Phew!

Once I take off on my run and get into a rhythm, I often find myself reflecting and composing blogs while I’m running.  Lots of my Tuesday Ten tidbits come when I’m running.

On Tuesday morning when I was out, I found myself thinking about Marisa’s comment on my Shopping Extravaganza post.  In part she said, “…And I hope your friend picked the red dress - she looks amazing in that, too!”

As a reminder, here are a couple of shots of her in it:

The reason I started thinking about this is because Tiny Friend DID NOT pick the red dress.  Tall Friend and I tried every which way but loose to get her to choose it as she really did look spectacular.  But her personal demons got to her.  That woman is an adult onset athlete (Triathlete, Adventure Racer, Boxing) who has taken her body from a size 14 to a size 4! She’s petite (5’2”) and just has the cutest figure.  But do you know she thought the dress was too ‘form fitting’ and made her butt and abdomen look huge?  We couldn’t convince her otherwise, so we helped her find a different dress because after all when you’re going to be wearing a formal dress you do need to feel comfortable and she just wasn’t.

That whole shopping day was really a revelation to me as I shopped alongside these two beautiful women.  Tall friend?  She has Marilyn Monroe’s figure.  She is so gorgeous and curvaceous… and yet so hard on herself at the same time.  I kept telling her I wished I had her height and her curves.  Same with Tiny Friend whose petiteness and defined arms would make my day.  WHY OH WHY DO I HAVE TO BE SO MEDIUM?!

Because I know I can be so hard on myself as to make myself miserable when I shop,  I made them promise to be honest but not to let me whine and spiral down into self-hatred.  They promised and as I said before were fantastic shopping companions.  As I picked myself apart, they were realistic about what worked and didn’t with my figure and in the end, I got a great dress.

On Sunday, probably fueled by my great dress, I finally decided I needed to do as Mr. Helen suggested and get rid of some of the baggy things I’ve been wearing.  I have another co-worker who is in the midst of weight-loss – 80 pounds so far and wants to lose another 20ish.  I texted her and asked her what size she is wearing right now and when she texted me back, it was the size of most of my baggy stuff.  I asked her if she wanted a bag of clothes that were just a few months old and she excitedly said yes, please, and thank you I am desperate for clothes.

So I packaged up the baggy stuff and took it to work on Monday.  She emailed me and said she was excited to get home and try things on.  Later that evening she texted me and said almost everything fit and the couple of things that didn’t she’d be wearing in a few more pounds. 

This made me reflect during my Tuesday morning run how some people’s agony (me buying my freak-out size) is another person’s victory.  Which brought me full circle to thinking about my shopping friends and how hard they were on themselves and how silly to be that way.  There's a lesson in that for me, for sure.

After all that reflection and thinking about blogging this I went off to work and around 10:00, my co-worker came to my office to show off her 'new' outfit.  
My co-worker showing off how baggy clothes have become victory clothes,
how joy can be found in a previously painful blouse and pair of pants.

Whatever torture you are putting yourself though, stop it right now and learn to love yourself more.  Treat yourself just like you would treat a co-worker or the friends you shop with.


  1. First: now I know why I got a message on my FB reply so fast from you. 4.20 am? Here I am whining about getting up at 5.15 am. I won't do that anymore!

    Second: I do the same, i.e. thinking about things to post when I run or when I'm walking with Bella. I have 3 different posts in a week and every night I write down what I want to mention on my blog so I won't forget.

    It's so sweet that you gave those clothes to your co-worker and she was so happy with them. She looks happy too.

    I guess we all think that people with a great body have no self-doubt or aren't insecure about their body. Misunderstanding of the century I think. I love the quote, it's a good one to remember.

    Hang in there at work today Helen, just 2 more hours for me, and have a great weekend.

  2. "I kept telling her I wished I had her height and her curves."

    Are you not doing exactly the same thing as tiny friend?

    You look amazing, very nice curves and one can easily be very jealous of Mr. Helen :)

    I recently got rid of 5 big bags of clothes to good will and then had a work friend give me several pairs of jeans which are going to fit me soon.. made me happy :)

  3. I write great blog posts in my head when I'm riding my bike outside! And then I forget most if not all by the time I get home to my keyboard:(

  4. Thank you for some great thoughts that I am passing on to someone special.

  5. "Whatever torture you are putting yourself though, stop it right now and learn to love yourself more."

    Hmmmmmm...sounds familiar ;-)

    It's funny because I wrote a blog post yesterday (doing Ellen's Hateloss challenge) and it got me thinking about how it seems to only be easy to love ourselves *in response* to having lost weight. And that if we happened to regain weight, it would be harder. And then it dawned on me that the main reason I haven't regained weight is precisely because I practice self-acceptance!

  6. Very, very very good advice Helen! If you could can that way of thinking and sell it to women, you would be a gazillionaire. I try very hard to be like this (and yes, like the poster, I still want to change.) I think its working a bit. I haven't lost much yet, but seem to be more content with looking at my image in a mirror.

    Haha--I compose blogs while I am walking. But then I forget them by the time I get home. Maybe if I was running I'd get home faster and wouldn't forget?

  7. For some reason I thought you were a 5am riser...I guess I could do a 4am, if I could go back to bed around 8am, lol! I compose posts when I'm swimming, but like Debby, I usually can't remember them by the time I'm near a computer. And I'm SURE they were absolutely riveting, too!!! ;)

    So speaking of one who is guilty of hyperfocusing on flaws, I totally get where tiny friend was coming from...and also, the frustration of you and tall friend because you guys don't see what she's seeing. It's just hard to accept what seems so large in your mind, you know?

    Love your last line. Love it.

  8. We all do this. So hard not to critique ourselves much harder than we would anyone else (guilty as charged).

    Tiny friend also probably still sees her old self. It never really goes away when you lose weight.

    And -geez, early riser! I only get up at 4:20 if I have to pee! And then I lay there and decide if I can wait, especially when it is really cold LOL.

  9. Ugh. This touches close to home for me. I don't even want to go out with friends when I feel fat. Must stop that.
    You really get up early! When I get up that early to visit the potty I call that getting up in the middle of the night! Lol That's some serious dedication!

  10. I should have read this BEFORE I posted today. Almost made me want to take down my post. I really am in an "I hate my body mode". Hard to pull out of it once I'm in it. Usually backfires on me too. Instead of setting me on fire, it usually just depresses me. I'll have to work on this.

    4:20am. I got up at 4:19am. It was suppose to be 4:30am but I woke up before the alarm. At the gym by 5am, done with my workout by 6:20am. I love morning workouts. Great way to start the day.

    Have a great weekend Helen!

  11. I adore the "be okay" poster.

  12. Most excellent post, Helen! I love the poster, and hope you don't mind if I borrow it. It is SO perfect for where I am right now. All my brilliant blogging ideas come to me while I'm working. Ha. Seems like when I'm at my desk working, I can think of all kinds of things to write, and sites I want to visit. Then when I have a few minutes... I go blank. I'm with Kelly. 4:00 a.m. is the middle of the night. LOL.

  13. Sorry I'm a bit behind on blogs - just catching up! I love the message of this post and that quote. It's true we are so much harder on ourselves than we are on others. I agree that loving and accepting ourselves no matter what is the best thing we can do :)