Sunday, January 31, 2016

In Fine Form

Well, as of last Friday, I am down 10 pounds!


And as of this afternoon, I've reached another neat goal: I went to the gym every, single day this month.

The Queen of "I Can't Go to the Gym Because" Kingdom worked out 31 days in a row.
Those little stars beside each date indicate a workout...31 workouts in a row!
I'm feeling quite proud and happy tonight.

Having tooted my own horn a great deal, I must admit that tomorrow's weigh-in won't be pretty.

It's my lady time, and this weekend included a shindig at a local brewery, pizza, and a bowlful of ice cream tonight.

But that's okay.

Because life is always going to be this way. There will be special occasions, those evenings I just need to overindulge in sweets, or those days when I simply fall off the wagon.

What I'm going to keep up is my positive attitude.

I want to take care of and love this body the best that I can :)

Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Bon appétit!

My supper tonight was super bizarre.

I got home from the gym and let Clem outside.

She was feeling feisty tonight so we walked around the block a little longer than usual, followed by us returning inside so she could run and chase me up and down the apartment hall innumerable times.

I swear, sometimes she seems like a pup rather than a golden gal.

After my evening exercise routine with Clem, I opened the fridge and grabbed whatever I was craving.

Look at the odd assortment I ended up with!
Bacon. Broccolini (seasoned with balsamic vinegar!). Beets.

They all begin with the letter "B."

Seriously. Even down to the wine—Beaujolais Nouveau.

So essentially, I had a strange sort of alliteration feast tonight.

And that makes me quite happy.

Monday, January 25, 2016

My Kind of Guy

Tonight, I was having a stellar workout.

I scored a treadmill in front of a TV, and what should be playing on the Oxygen network? Sex and the City!
The LADIES!!! <3
A coworker saw what was playing and immediately hopped on the treadmill beside me.

"I'm so excited this is on right now!" I told her, deeming this comment important enough to remove my headphones and interrupt both of our workouts for. "It makes me so happy!"

She joyfully agreed, and the two of us power-walked in harmony over the next 45 minutes or so.

I was able to walk faster and at a higher incline...all because I was so excited to be watching a fun show! I can only imagine how many calories I was burning!

My walking buddy hopped off her treadmill shortly before the end of the second episode.

And a man hopped on.

Oh no! I thought. He is going to change the channel on me! That jerk! If I could count the times I've had to do my workout to ESPN...

The ball was totally in his court. The remote was closest to him, and hello, Sex and the City was playing as well as every woman-related commercial you can imagine. Vagisil. Pregnancy tests. It was like female overload discussing every remotely embarrassing female issue.

I mean, this was the Oxygen network and all.


Major, major kudos to this guy because for nearly 15 minutes, he ran at a smooth stride, not once letting on that he may be bored or even feeling awkward over my television show of choice.

Seriously. Not even a slight sideways glance. Nothing.

Apparently, chivalry is alive and well, and you can find it at the work gym.

Sunday, January 24, 2016

A Weight Update

This January, I vowed to eat healthier and exercise more often.

Real original, I know.

But guess what?

I've stuck with it.

(Insert shocked emoji face here.)

After 24 straight days of exercise (I haven't missed a workout yet!) and almost three weeks of better eating (I wasn't quite ready to say farewell to my favorite processed foods on January 1st), I'm down nearly 10 pounds!

(Insert another shocked emoji face here.)

The last time I lost a bunch of weight—five years ago, but who's counting?—I made sure to blog about my ups, down, frustrations...really, just all the thoughts and emotions that go along with this sort of journey.

And I'm so glad that I did. Because I cannot tell you how many times I've referenced those old posts this month, finding comfort and encouragement in my own words.

From now on, I'd like to have a sort of weekly update (on Leggings Love, I titled those posts "Wednesday Weigh-In," which is, again, not very original) so I'll have this adventure chronicled someplace safe.

I'd just journal about it, but my hand hurts when I write longer than, oh, five minutes or so.

So today, I'm introducing the first in a new series of posts.

They won't be called "Slender Sunday" or "Skinny Sunday." As tempting as these titles were (God, I'm a sucker for alliteration), this new weight-loss journey isn't about "Thinspiration" or "Nothing tastes as good as skinny feels."*

This is about learning to love my body and myself and making healthy decisions that are rooted in these positive thoughts.

I want to take better care of myself because I love and respect myself.

So sure, I'll delight in that number dropping on the scale. And yeah, there are moments I am going to really want to eat an entire pint of Häagen-Dazs and will be really peeved that I can't.

But ultimately, this quest is one that seeks a healthier, happier me.

So thank you for tuning in to the first edition of "In Fine Form."

Hope to see you next week! :)

*Pretty sure I can think of at least 10 things that do. And I'm not even trying hard.

Monday, January 18, 2016

Coffee, Classical Music, and Creative Writing

Well, I'm happy to report that the first week into my new routine was a success!

I set my alarm for 5am each morning and surprised myself by actually being able to roll out of bed (especially considering the temperatures around these parts lately...brrrrr!).

Making sure to set a timer and have my coffee brewing as I woke up was a huge help. So was being in bed by 10 o'clock.

I couldn't believe how productive that hour or so was each morning.

Sitting at my kitchen counter, sipping on a warm cup of coffee and listening to classical music (mainly piano melodies, my favorite), I was able to finish an entire chapter of my novel before Friday even came around.

Usually, a chapter takes me a few least!

What was even cooler was the change in my mood.

I would arrive at work feeling energized and happy—I mean, how could I not? I had started my day doing something I love and am passionate about.

I was also able to enjoy my evenings more fully since my mentality was: Jenna, you've been super productive today! Now, you get to relax. You've earned it! Pour a glass of wine and watch The Goldbergs, girlfriend!


Funny how much smoother things can run and all you can accomplish just by switching up your routine.

Sunday, January 10, 2016

A New Sort of Routine

I've been really beating myself up lately over the fact that I can never seem to find the time to write.

One of my 2016 resolutions was to stay in on Friday nights. I figured this recharge night would be the perfect time for me to work on my second novel.

But this past Friday evening? I was sound asleep by 8pm!

The work week had really wiped me out (I was struggling to keep my eyes open even while eating my supper!), but I was so angry with myself for wasting a perfectly good evening that could have been spent writing.

Of course, these feelings of frustration quickly turned into panic.

"I'm never going to finish my novel. I won't ever achieve this dream! I'm a failure," I told Clementine the next morning.

She looked back at me with her big, dark eyes, and I assume she was feeling very sorry for me.

So this week, I'm going to try something different.

Maybe setting aside evenings isn't the best game plan for me. I spend my entire workday reading and writing, so it makes sense why my brain is mush by the evening (and why I'd rather sit in front of Netflix and paint my nails).

Instead, I am going to get up one hour earlier and use that time to drink my coffee and work on my book.

My mind is definitely sharpest in the morning!

It isn't going to be easy waking up at 5:15, but it will be so worth it.

So onward and upward with this new routine!

Wednesday, January 6, 2016

Powerball Newbie

This evening, I was doing my power walk on the treadmill and watching the 5 o'clock news.

Technically, I was forced to watch ESPN for 41 minutes of my 60-minute workout, but once the sports dude left, I was able to snag his treadmill and change the channel to something (anything!) far more interesting.


The news informed me that the Ohio Powerball was up to $500 million.

Jeez Louise!

I texted Adam and my mom, instructing them both to buy tickets. Neither was as jazzed or excited as I had hoped them to be.

 "The Powerball is up to $500 million!" I told two coworkers in the locker room after my workout. "I'm going to stop and buy some tickets."
I was glad to see that they knew what I was talking about and were equally as enthused.

Much better.

So, a few minutes before my evening class, I stopped into a nearby Speedway.

"I'd like to buy Powerball tickets," I proclaimed to the cashier, an elderly man with worn skin, round glasses, and a glimmer in his eyes. "Um, how much are they?"

I mean, maybe they were $50! I didn't know! I had never done this before.

"Two dollars a piece."

"Whew," I sighed in relief. "I'll take five, please."

He printed out the five lines and held out his hand for my $10 payment.

I handed him my American Express card.

"What? Oh, no, no, no!" He shook his head. "You don't pay for lottery with credit card! Cash only!"

Panic set in. I had absolutely no cash! The lines were printed!

"There. You can use the ATM here," he said, pointing to a less-than-reliable looking machine next to the Mountain Dew.

So I took out cash. And paid a $2.50 service charge.

"What will you buy with your winnings?" The cashier asked me, as he gingerly handed me my lottery ticket. "You will quit your job?"

"Hmm...I don't know." How had I not given this any thought yet? I could be a millionaire in mere hours! "I like my job, though. I don't want to quit that."

He asked me what I did, and I told him. I said I loved to write.

"You are going to be a novelist one day," he said. "Publish big books."

I smiled, "I think so, too."

I may not wake up a $500 millionaire tomorrow morning, but I will always remember that cashier and the special sort of twinkle he had.

I am going to be a novelist someday. I am going to publish big books.

Tuesday, January 5, 2016

New Kicks

I've officially exercised five days in a row now!

One small step for man, one giant leap for Jennakind!

The only problem?

My gym shoes have lived a good and long life and are showing some serious wear. As in worn-down tread and even a hole in one shoe!

Basically, it was well past time to buy myself a new pair of shoes.

Last night, while drinking some fruity Argo tea, I instinctively navigated to the Nike website.

"Cute! Chic!" I thought, clicking through the various running shoes* and oohing over the fun designs. "I want them all!"

Until I saw the prices that is.

"That's okay! It's an investment," I rationalized.

I really want to save money for a house. Seriously.

That darn 2016 resolution glimmered to mind.


I knew I should do a little more research and at least try to find a better buy.

And guess what, bloggers?


Frugal Jenna bought two pairs of gym shoes for $90 total. Including tax and all!

I felt quite thrifty and smart. And excited about my new kicks.

What do you think?

Now I'm more ready than ever to keep up my gym challenge!

*Disclaimer: I do not run. I walk. But I suppose this just makes my feet ultra prepared.

Monday, January 4, 2016

The nerve!

This afternoon, I paid a visit to my doctor about some stomach pains I've been having.

I arrived just in time and was still filling out my paperwork when the nurse called my name.

A bit frazzled, I said, "Oh, but wait! I haven't finished my forms yet."

"That's okay, you can bring them along," she said kindly, shepherding me back.

I babbled on and followed along.

I was continuing to shuffle the clipboard and my gigantic Longchamp around when, to my horror, I realized what was happening.

We had stopped. And I was being weighed.
I felt the blood drain out of my face.

No, no, no!

I was wearing my giant, puffy coat! I had shoes on! I was still carrying around that dumb clipboard and holding my overstuffed purse!

I mean, and this was all just insult to my Christmas weight injury!

Unfortunately, the damage had been done.

And that number will sting my brain for days, weeks, and years to come.


I know a number is only a number.

But good gosh, I would have preferred not to have seen that one.

Sunday, January 3, 2016

Happy New Year!

As Adam sits on the family room floor taking apart the vacuum cleaner (pine needle incident), I am sitting at his antique desk, penning my 2016 resolutions.

I am really not opposed to being a cliché. Some clichés I quite like!

I am also sitting here with much shorter, much darker hair. I love it, and it makes me feel weird. All at once. Just as a new hairstyle should do.

The photo above is right after my appointment, when it was beautifully curled and styled. Basically, it's a sort of ombré/balayage look that will be easier for me to maintain. It was getting expensive keeping up with my highlights.


Onwards to my 2016 resolutions.

1. Appreciate what I have and where I'm at. I'm the absolute worst about living in the future. And while this sort of mindset can be a great motivator, it means I don't take appreciate the present. Which really isn't cool or healthy.
I already have this adorable sassy why do I troll Pinterest for Bernedoodle puppies?
2. Be more of a hermit. Weird, I know, but I'd like to set aside Friday evenings as my sort of "recharge" night. Whether that means reading a good book, doing some writing, or simply coloring, I believe a relaxing night in would serve my body, spirit, and bank account well.
3. Post less on social media. Gah, I'm the worst about this! I spend too much time take the perfect photo and too little time enjoying the moment. Classic millennial move.

4. Stop eating when I'm bored or just because something looks good. 

5. Get way more sleep. Also known as the "Turn off Netflix/close that book and go to bed! It's 1:30am" resolution.
This is my amazing bed! How am I not spending more time in it?!
6. Schedule regular appointments with my therapist. In addition to general anxiety, I have pretty awful existential anxiety. It's the existential anxiety that sends me into panic attacks and is the most crippling. I'm making my mental health a priority this year.

7. Begin seriously saving for a house. Noisy neighbors and creepy basement laundry areas are getting old.

8. See how many days in a row I can go to the gym (I'm at two right off to a good start, right?). I'm the Queen of "I Can't Go to the Gym Because..." Kingdom, and I need some sort of challenge to keep me going!

9. Be more helpful. You want to know something awful? Adam often makes us dinner and cleans up. This started when I was still in grad school and my evenings were spent either at class or doing schoolwork. But it's continued after, and I need to be better about stepping up and helping out. Having said all of that, how amazing is Adam?
Standard supper prepared by Adam.
Happy 2016! Here is hoping to a happy, healthy, exciting year full of all sorts of adventures!