I want to pump me up.

You guys!!! I joined a gym. Can you believe it??

Yep, I had an appointment at Gold’s Gym last night and signed right up. I probably shouldn’t have committed to a 2-year contract, bu oh well.

But that’s not all. Not only did I sign up for the gym last night, but I WORKED OUT THIS MORNING. Well, I walked on the treadmill for 30 minutes. In the Cardio Theater. They play movies while you work out in the dark!

So I braved the 30-degree weather this morning (hey, that’s RIDICULOUSLY COLD for a Florida girl) and went to the gym at 5:30. It was awesome.

And I’m going back tonight for a sit-down session with a personal trainer who will get me going on an exercise regiment.

My  goals?

For now, I just want to build up my fitness level. I’m kind of pitiful. For that, I can do the treadmill and perhaps some of the group exercise classes.

I’d also like to work on toning some muscles. My metabolism needs a serious boost. (Because how is it that I’m eating only 800 calories a day and not losing weight?!)

And eventually, I really would like to get in some yoga-type stuff. I want to be lean, and stretchy, and strong!

This gastric bypass is my chance. My chance to NOT fight this same weight for the next twenty (or thirty, or forty) years. I don’t care if my weight drops fast or slow, but IT WILL COME OFF. I’ll be pounding the gym to make sure it happens.

Nekkid

Y’all, I’m doing something I haven’t done in years. I’m wearing a skirt. A skirt that falls just below the knee. A skirt that puffs up and out with every little gust of wind. A skirt that shows my calves. I feel so nekkid!

But I also feel incredibly lady-like. I think I might even be prancing a little.

So what inspired the skirt-wearing? Well, I was cleaning out my closet for the 50th time in the last year, and I decided to try this skirt on. It was too small when I ordered it for Easter 3 years ago, and I tried it on a million times, and tried pairing it with a looser shirt so the tightness wouldn’t show, etc. It never fit.

Well, I tried it on this weekend and it nearly fell off. The thing won’t last another 5 pounds.  So I had to wear it now or never.

And so I twirl. Calves showing and all.

New Church, perhaps?

Lee is recovering well from his hernia operation. I have to say, it’s really, really great spending this much time with him! We usually have pretty difference schedules: I’m off on weekends, but he usually works (retail, you know?).

Spending the weekend together has been nothing short of blissful. I love this man, and I love spending time with him when he’s relaxed. He was so relaxed, in fact, that he suggested we go try a new church on Sunday.

Now we’ve been going to Northland for a while, although we haven’t officially joined since our last church split about 3 years ago. Northland works for us–they have like a billion different service times, so we’re able to switch it up depending on what works for us that week: Saturday night? sure! Monday night? Sure! Sunday? Do we prefer 8, 10, 5, or 7? Which city? Online? It’s incredible.

But, needless to say, we don’t feel “connected.” Christian music has been the one constant in our lives, substituting for the encouragement and conviction we would normally get from a church family.

So this week, we tried FBC Eustis, which is only a few miles from our house. I’m the first to admit, I’m not in a hurry to re-join a Baptist church. I’m not denominationally inclined. I think Jesus is what matters… period. Not when or how you were baptized, or any of the other nuances that have split into denominations. And honestly, I long for a church that’s a whole lot more open-minded and welcoming to ALL kinds of folks than the crowd a Southern Baptist church typically draws.

That said, I loved this church.

  1. The first thing I saw was a greeter with a sign that said “flash your lights if you’re a first-time visitor!” Now that was fun! He directed us to visitor parking, which was full.
  2. Visitor parking was full. That’s always good.
  3. Normal parking was full. Even better.
  4. I saw old people! Young people! Kids! White people! Latino people! Black people!!! Keep in mind, we live in a very old, ultra-white area (at least for what I’m used to here in Florida). And churches are said to be the most segregated part of society these days. And we’re an interracial couple. This matters to me, and when I saw some semblance of diversity, my little heart leaped for joy!
  5. When we walked in, someone warned us not to go in the first door. If we did, we’d be walking right into the front of the sanctuary. You know, first-time visitors REALY appreciate that kind of information!
  6. The music was hoppin’.
  7. The pastor’s hot. Woops! I didn’t mean that. I mean “he’s on fire for the Lord.” Ahem. And he’s young. Like 40’s, and his message was relevant and interesting. I couldn’t take my eyes off… wait, I mean, I couldn’t help but listen intently.
  8. The choir! It was awesome! And it was HALF MEN! Like literally fifty percent. Nice
  9. They have a school. Not that it’s necessarily a big plus or anything, but I like that.
  10. Attendance from last week was like 500 in small groups and 750 in worship. Our last church declined when everybody was going to Sunday School but not regular service, so I’m glad people are coming to church!
  11. They do lunches in the school cafeteria after services. Isn’t that cute? It’s all fellowship-y!

So, needless to say, I’d like to go back and try it a second time. Lee liked it too, but he’s not as enthusiastic about it as I am. I’m praying God will keep leading us there if He’d like it to be our new church home.

Things that make you go hmmmm…

At the chiropractor’s office this morning, I noticed a sign that said:

Your body doesn’t need help. It just needs less interference.

It’s a simple statement, but one that hit me like a ton of bricks. My body doesn’t need the newest, most improved supplement that’s sure to make me live longer, lose weight, and Be Beautiful. I don’t need açaí berry juice or organic steel-cut oatmeal or super-pure fish oil pills.

I just need less interference. From unhealthy, empty crap like crackers (GUILTY!). Like all the stuff that used to knock me off balance and keep me from feeling clear and full of energy.

The secret isn’t buying something new and miraculous to put in my body. It’s just keeping the crappy stuff, the interference, OUT!

Preparing for the Flab

So I had it penciled in on my Franklin Covey planner that I needed to call my insurance company and ask about skin removal coverage.

I don’t have procedure codes, I don’t have a ton of medical information. So, like a dummy, I basically just asked, “um, hi, can you send me the policy bulletins on skin removal after gastric bypass?”

The girl couldn’t really answer my question because it isn’t explicit in my policy. She looked up my bariatric benefits and said that my policy does include pre-op and and post-op care (duh) as well as reconstructive surgery. Well now that’s good news.

I asked about the panniculectomy since it seems to be covered most often, and she read the policy to me. Something about having to be documented in the medical record that there’s rashing and chafing that it reoccurs over time. So I see a million visits to my dermatologist or primary doctor in my future.

What I really know I’ll need is a brachioplasty. My arms already look like they belong on somebody three times my age, and it’s only getting worse.

Anyhow, the girl said it would be wise to talk to my doctor, get procedure codes, and call back. What I’ll actually do is research procedure codes on the internet, and then call them back once the new benefit year starts April 1st. I’ll consider this Cosmetic Surgery Plan of Attack part I. Other elements of the plan:

  • contribute as much as I can to pre-tax medical savings accounts for what won’t be covered
  • exercise and lotion. exercise and lotion. exercise and lotion.
  • vitamins and water. vitamins and water. vitamins and water.

And so if I start planning for this now, perhaps I won’t have to wait quite 10 years for approval once I’m done losing weight! (which feels like it may be never, by the way. I am losing so S L O W L Y!!!)

One of those days

Today has been Rough with a capital “R.” I don’t know why, but my emotions are all over the place!

Professionally, I feel like a total loser. The short version of the story is this: I advised a student who thought he was graduating this semester with his wife. He received confirmation from academic records that was the case.

Then, through a quality control process, someone discovered some of his transfer credits had been entered twice. Now, as this guy’s academic advisor, I did not enter those credits, but I certainly should have caught the error. (and, by the way, he should have too). I prayed about it all weekend, and then called him this morning to let him know what happened and that he’s actually EIGHT CLASSES away from finishing his degree.

The student is devastated. He’s going to lose his job because he won’t be able to get his teaching certificate during the timetable his employer requires. He’s not going to get to walk at graduation with his wife. His family members have already purchased plane tickets, and it’s just a stinking mess.

I know this isn’t entirely my fault. But I also know that I should have caught this problem months ago. It’s really humbling to make such a huge, stupid oversight. I just feel horrible.

The student’s mother called me and literally yelled at me while I listened and cried for a half hour (see? My emotions are wacky!)

I trust God to provide for the student. To protect his job. To protect our University’s reputation. To be BIG in this mess.

I’m here to HELP students. I truly hate failing at that.

One Month Out

One month down. 21 pounds gone.  I need to post pictures!

I feel fantastic. Full of healthy foods and vitamins and minerals and energy.

G-tube comes out next Wednesday, and then I’ll really feel like I’m on my way!