Skip the Gym with Ya Boy

I think it was the beginning of the year. Knee deep in work (already) and feeling a truckload of guilt and actual sluggishness in general I decided to get back on track, again. Though I was ready physically my mind was playing tricks on me when it came to going to the gym. I was NOT ready to do that, because it required me to get up too early. I checked out my favorites on YouTube but wasn’t really feeling them either when I stumbled on this young fireball Millionaire Hoy @yaboymillhoy.

He came up in search all the time but I ignored it because so many of the titles included HIIT which given my back and joint situations I figured they would be out of reach. I was wrong. Just so happens that at the time I finally took the leap he was running a monthly challenge was for beginners so I dove in and loved it!

What I dig about ya boy:
Intensity – the workouts are challenging for all fitness levels. There are mods and previews of the next exercise in the mini box. Your heart will be pumping and you will sweat.
Variety – Millhoy is prolific he has close to 800 videos on his channel with new videos published every Sunday thru Friday. With a new challenge every month. So if you only wanted to workout with him you will not run out of things to do. He is also contributor to Sweat Stream Collab on YouTube.
Personality – y’all know how it goes. You pull up a YouTube workout that looks promising only to find the instructor to be gross i.e. voice irritating, too loud, obnoxious or just appear to be STANK in general. Well, he’s none of those. Now he talks non-stop, but never induces any side eye. He’s quite upbeat, lively and bearable even in the early morning, which is essential for grumpy old broads.
What he is not – a hulk smashing, weight dropping, cussing dude. If that’s your thing, cool, but he ain’t that dude.

So, if you feel like skipping the gym but still want to get it in, I highly recommend Millionaire Hoy. Check him out and subscribe if you dig him.

 

 

Changes

It’s Memorial Weekend and hot as a mug in the metro.  Last I wrote it was the dead of winter, well it was January anyway, not that cold here.  Nonetheless, it’s been a long time and I’m glad to be here, but MAN things have been hectic.

Health – is meh. Fitness is blah, weight is through the ROOF.  You see really since about September I have been WORKING.  At one stretch in the last months I was working four, yes FOUR jobs.  I had bidness to take care of, debts to settle and it was just required. Now I know certain folk are beasts of fitness and manage to balance the whole world on their shoulders while staying tip top (POTUS & FLOTUS I see you).  I’m not that good at scheduling nor motivated enough to try to do all the things.  An ole broad got to sleep sometimes.  So to maintain energy I sparingly worked out, sparingly practiced yoga and stayed afloat on a steady diet of milk duds, popcorn and Nutriblast juice.  Helluva a combination right?  Well after 4 jobs, 10 lbs and seemingly endless financial roadblocks this happened:

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Photos: MsThorns

YEAHHHHHH BOYYYEEEEEEEE, ye olde broad bought her very first house!  I’m in it now, it’s an absolute wreck and in spite of the inspection I have been getting stuff fixed non-stop, but… not sharing a wall with someone I don’t live with has been priceless. I didn’t know how much that was on my nerves until it wasn’t there. More importantly though I never thought it would happen, and it did.

The working has slowed, I walked today and it was nice and soon, I hope to exhale completely. In the mean time I leave you with this.  As long as you’re upright and above ground you have a chance to change your life.  Eight years ago, I was fragile AF, a middle aged divorcee starting over with NOTHING but problems, some of which I never thought I’d ever overcome, but I did. Wasn’t easy, sometimes it still isn’t but I kept it pushing, kept the faith and got some stories to tell.  I had to live through it to tell it and I’m thankful that I did.  You can too, whatever that thing is that you THINK you can’t over come, you can honey. It’s not too late.

Video: David Bowie

Wrap It Up

Welcome to 2016, I hope that your year thus far is as happy as it was when the clock struck 12 on January 1. After the indulgences of the holidays and maybe a respite from your fitness program you’re probably rip roaring to go and take off what you might have put on during the the festivities. Perhaps you did stay on track, didn’t pig out and stuck to your fitness program, if so good for you send some of that energy my way. I happen to be in the former group, having enjoyed plenty of food and wine between Thanksgiving and TODAY quite frankly I am now I’m ready to get it together.  However, I know who I am and jumping right into the eat right thing isn’t happening so I’m getting started by getting ye olde body moving again. The thing is, it seems that this body requires quite a bit more assistance than it used to. So, ladies and gentleman, I’d like to introduce you to the Abominable Exercise Woman.

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Rocking the latest in hurting joint fashions Abominable Exercise Woman models elbow sleeves to prevent the recurrence of tennis elbow and to aid with proper alignment in all those pushups and chaturangas, a knee brace for the arthritic knee and wrist wraps to prevent trauma that can cause the recurrence of the scary sounding but mostly harmless, ganglion cyst.  The injuries, the impending big 50 and this perimenopause/hormonal poundage got a sista HURTIN! However, I shall press on.  Two weeks in and I have actually had some improvement in my back, it’s not nearly as stiff and achy in the morning as previously experienced, so I’ll wrap up if that’s going to reduce the aches and pains. Hopefully I can lose some of this fine attire as my fitness level increases.

Now as always I ask, what about you? What wraps, contraptions, potions and concoctions do you use in order to work out? Do you use them all the time or only when you’re hurting? Let me know in the comments, on Twitter or on Google+.  Until next time see you in the living room, where I’ll be all wrapped up, but moving somehow.
Photos: MsThorns
Video: The Fabulous Thunderbirds

Eat Clean for What?

I see you all you little clean eaters, with your meal prep, tasty recipes, and pretty smoothies, I LOVE IT. I’ve been inspired by it. I said to myself, olde broad get your diet together, one cannot live by popcorn and milk duds alone so I did it.

Prepping wasn’t hard I’ve always done that. I chop every Sunday for salads, cooked meals and juices for the week. So I continued to do so. Getting junk out of my cabinets and fridge was easy as well, I ate it ALL. I work hard for the money I ain’t ’bout to throw out some perfectly good Tostitos. Having polished that off I was on my way.

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Week 1 – my head was hurting, I was having junk withdrawal, and was  HOOONNNGGRRRYYY and evil without my snacks but I persevered.
Week 2 – I weighed in and was back to where I was at the start of the summer.
Week 3 – 2 more pounds. Shouldn’t this be faster? Oh yeah I’m old and my schedule was getting crazy so the workouts slowed down.
Weeks 4-5 I’m bored and tired of eating like this. I stop weighing in.
Week 6 – I turned 49 ate ALL the things and have been eating ever since.

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In that 6 weeks, the net loss was three pounds. Needless to say with that amount of sacrifice I was sorely disappointed. So much so that I haven’t tried again since. However, it wasn’t all doom and gloom. Not a day during that time did I have digestive issues. I stopped rolling like a hot dog roller all night and slept well for the first time in foreverrrrrrr, and did not have a headache after that first week. Yet I titled this Eat Clean For What?

In spite of my perceived failure I was on to something. The focus on eating real food affected my quality of life in a positive way and that is very important as you get older. In fact eating whole unprocessed foods can:

  • Give you more energy
  • Improve cardiovascular health
  • Prevent cancer
  • Support mental health
    And…
  • Lose weight

Losing weight is really the cherry on top of that clean smoothie. I think those benefits plus those I’d experienced during my first attempt are well worth going for it again and I will, as soon as I finish this last bag of Lays.

So how about you? Are you a clean eater? How long have you been? What’s been your experience thus far? Let me know in the comments, on Twitter, or Google+. Until next time see you at the store, in the produce aisle of course.
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Photos: MsThorns

Just Say No

So I go to Walmart to get one thing and as is always the case and I came out with five. Creature of habit that I am I park in the same area and come in the same entrance. At this entrance they have produce on one side of the aisle and exercise apparel on the other. Those merchandisers are no dummies however, I AM because on EVERY trip I peruse the apparel. I mean you can’t be $15 for tights right?

On this most recent excursion I spot a purple jacket and tank, which are must haves, because PURPLE.  I  looked for some track pants but there were none to my liking. For some reason I looked down one of the racks and saw what I like to call “yoga booty shorts”. Thinking since I’m old and hot, ie. prone to a flash or five I’ll try them. They had my size so in the basket they went.

Woke up the next morning for some yoga and decided to give the booty shorts a test run. They were light and and fit nice or so I thought…

Downdog #1 I felt them creeping
Forward fold #2 I felt them twisting
Pyramid #3 I felt them bunching.

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By Svanasana time half my azz was out. I had to snatch that out wedgie before I could relax.

Now I’m not about to say I’m going to say no to the fitness apparel at the Mart. However I will say a hellnawl to those yoga booty shorts in the future…

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Unless they are money back guaranteed to not ride up in to the nether regions of my fanny.

What about you? Have you ever had a wardrobe malfunction with your fitness gear? Do tell in the comments and in all the usual places.

Until next time, see you on the mat where my hind parts will be fully covered.

Also: for more yoga follies check ye olde broad out on Instagram.
Photos: MsThorns

Giving Thanks

Shortly after the last post, my doctor released me into the wild and instead of going HAM as is my usual fashion, I took it slow. A couple of walks with some yoga.  Went back to the gym which was sorely missed to work on regaining my Queen of Treadmill title because its too freaking hot here to walk outside in the evening and I even hit the weights, machines of course and boy I got a lonnnnnnnnngggg way to go to get some strength back, even so I am THANKFUL.

I have explained to some and damn near shouted to others who don’t get it that a person who is use to moving can be in a bad way when they’re not.  Let me tell you I was SALTY as a mug during that time I was down. I was drinking all the haterade and was downright indignant watching folks running and biking and lifting and doing all things physical from the sideline.

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MsThorns

I was a sorry patient and a depressed one.  I knew sideline time wasn’t final, nevertheless it sucked.  During that sucky time, I learned that my ability to move should not be taken for granted. You think I would have learned it before but these time, well, was just different.

I count my blessings now.

I actually DO stop if I see bunnies and butterflies, I actually do listen for the sounds of birds and crickets, I actually do look at every flower and stay on the look out for Smokey and Yogi because it seems every summer there is some bear running around, usually in Sandy Springs but still I watch 🙂 I still work out my problems on the trail and EVERY time I have a little talk with Jesus because a lot of times, actually most times I need him to fix it.

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MsThorns

I’m thankful for this body I live in it and all of its perfect imperfections.  I’m thankful that it can move and that it serves me well in all that need and want to do. It’s the only one I’ve got and you best belief I want it to to keep moving.

What are you thankful for? What lessons have you learned on your journey.  Let me know in the comments and all the usual places.

Until next time, see you somewhere, I’ll be the one moving with a smile on my face.
 

Have ALL the Seats

Summer Summer Summertime means  freedom. We’re free from the bad weather and drudgery of trekking through snow and rain and days of gray skies to enjoy sunshine, blues skies and and all things green. Summer time is NEKKID time err at the least, much fewer clothes time and for health and fitness enthusiasts we are freed from the gym. Boot campers, runners, bikers,  tail chi and yoga practitioners all head outdoors to do things in fresh air instead of the feet and azz smell of the gym.  I especially looked forward to the summer of 2015 because I would NOT be training for Peachtree which means I could walk as much and as fast or slow as I want (yeah I’m still complying with the no running rule). I could stop and look at butterflies and squirrels and flowers and not worry about my time.  Yeah, this summer was going to be awesome, or so I thought.

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Thus far I’ve had to enjoy summer at a distance, you see ye olde broad’s body decided that it didn’t have the energy to do anything back in June because it has gone full tilt hormonal.  Things got bad enough that the doctor told me to have seat, i.e. refrain from any strenuous pursuits which resulted in my 195,675th hissyfit of the year. My dears, this is getting old.

She advised, I consented and am hopeful that the trip that necessitated this dreadful outfit will result in my health situation improving and permission to exercise.

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Getting old ain’t easy, getting old as a woman can provide some special challenges, but a good healthcare team, the good Lord, and of course yoga has made it bearable thus far. Hopefully soon I can join you kids outside again.

So what have you been doing this summer? Spending more time outside? Doing new and exciting things? Traveling?  Allow me to live vicariously through you and tell me about your summer in the comments.

Until next time, see you anywhere but the doctor’s office.
Photos: MsThorns
Video: DJ Jazzy Jeff and the Fresh Prince on Vevo

You’re Tingling Baby

I was at the end of my rope by the time I said this. I was at Kaiser again, getting yet another injury diagnosis. This is how it all went down.

A few weeks before that visit, I put my right elbow down on the armrest of my chair at work and came right off of it with an OWWWW! I thought maybe I hit something funny but it wasn’t a funny bone type feeling it was more like a knife. From that day on I couldn’t put that elbow down on anything. The Good Doctor (me) self-diagnosed it as “I must lean on that elbow too much, it will stop.” Thing is it didn’t stop. The weekend before the trip to the doctor I was washing dishes and started getting this tingling feeling in my right forearm and was like what is this? It was tingling after the dishes were complete, it was tingling the next morning then all hell broke lose in the Walmart parking lot.

I’m slinging bags in the trunk, closed it and my purse slipped off my right shoulder, I hoisted it back up my jacked grazed my elbow and I screamed. This was no tingling this a feeling like hot knives being stabbed right in my elbow, just from my JACKET grazing it. I knew I was in trouble and went to the doctor.

Doctor: weren’t you just in here a month ago? Didn’t I tell you…
Me: yeah that’s (previous ailment) okay it’s this elbow (describes pain, doctor shakes head, does a few strength tests, gives proper side-eye and look of disapproval)
Doctor: you have tennis elbow
Me: what??? I don’t play tennis.
Doctor: it doesn’t come just from playing tennis

She went on to describe how repetitive motion, poor form or overuse can cause it. She said “you’re doing to much, you cannot do EVERYTHING at the same time, you have to split it up” along with more side-eye and “you and your activities”. My regiment at the time was doing total body strength training two days a week , yoga every day, body weight training once a week and cardio. All but the cardio involved lifting and pushing weights or buy weight basically every day. . So yeah I was the captain of team DOING TOO MUCH. As for the remainder of the exam…

Doctor: you need to take a month off you can’t do anything on your hands
Me: what????? Well can I do this? (demos chaturanga on the exam table)
Doctor: NOOOOOOO! You can do cardio, legs and abs and anything that doesn’t involve you lifting or pushing anything with your arms. I was like:

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For one month there would be no P2180048_1024 and definitely no P2190288_1024.

These last two weeks I have walked sparingly, drowned my sorrows in 20150502_203727 and watched my belly shoot out so far that I can no longer see my toes without bending over. Another ongoing health issue escalated that landed me at the doctor again last week and by that time it was all too much for my head to bear. Restarting my yoga practice, no hands style has helped my mental situation. I have done one down dog per day the last few days, but that’s it as far has any pressure on my hands. Needless to say, a lot’s been going on.

I made light of the tingling sensation but it was a signal that stuff was wrong. Maybe you have had a sensation, an ache or a pain that lingered a little too long and have tried to ignore it. Don’t. The faster you high-tail it to a medical professional, the faster you can rehab and get back to your fitness pursuits.

Until next time see you at the gym where I will not be tingling but will be…

Photos: MsThorns; Video: LL Cool J

What Do I Do With That? Yoga Socks

By mid-March here in Georgia, winter is just about over. Sure, there are a few nippy days here and there but it’s more warm than cold, more rain and wind than snow and ice.  Though all of the cold stuff is pretty much behind, the effects of winter remain like pale skin and in my case ASHY skin. I’m dry, allergic and eczema prone anyway so I figured that what I was seeing was a case of overuse and dryness on my feet. I was dead wrong, my feet had been done in by:

MY YOGA MAT!!!!

You see I’d stopped cleaning it as much because my hands had begun slipping during practice and I assumed that all that cleaning rubbed off “the sticky”.  The result of that no cleaning schedule ended up on my feet, which meant yet another trip to the doctor and night and day use of:

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EEEEWWWWWWWW!!!!!! Mind you I’d never had this in my 48 years, neverrrrrrrr and I get it from a friggin yoga mat, my own mat at home? Well yes, it happens. Even though I wasn’t in a studio using a communal mat, I was rolling up my sweat and dirt everyday into the mat and that fungus just thrives on it.  I wasn’t about to stop practicing though and figured I’d resume my cleaning schedule after every yoga practice and get something to put on my feet.  Enter, yoga socks.  I decided on two different types: IMG_2032To find out how it went down check out the video below and until next time, see you on the yoga mat. Mine will be sanitized, deodorized and ready for action.

Photos/Video: MsThorns

Making the Cut

Not that cut but it certainly was an exciting weekend of golf at the Masters, with Tiger playing into Sunday young  Jordan Spieth busting all these records on his way to victory. I actually enjoyed watching this tournament, while doing a little busting of my own:

OUT OF MY CLOTHES!!!!

and not like the Hulk but more like this. You see in the space of one year and the onset of the big P, a sista has put on 8-10 pounds depending on what day it is.  I am distraught, dismayed and sometimes disgusted but not too disgusted because I had a big hunk of CAKE just yesterday.  Hence, the cut from my closet clothing that this new body can no longer fit.

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Since it’s warming up here I was redoing the closet, moving the the winter stuff over and the summer stuff up front.  I thought it might be a good idea that I should try on a few things that I had in that fit well last year but perhaps would be questionable this year and they were more than questionable.  I think I can no sit a plate of food on my butt and and maybe a salt shaker on my stomach.  Pulling thos dresses out had me all up in my FEELINGS.  Even though I now that weight gain and a whole bunch of other stuff can and in my case is happening during this time, the medical reasons weren’t enough to help me feel better.  What did help me feel better? Shaking it off the next day and putting in some treadmill work.  It was that or lay around and sulk which is actually easy for me as a person who has struggled with poor body image forever and ever amen.  The thing is, the loss of the dresses weren’t enough to get me out the door and to the gym.  What did? The desire to have a good quality of life in the long term. I don’t want any further diabetes complications, nor acceleration of spinal and other joint problems. I just want to live and live well, so I continue to work.  If the work means that maintaining this new body is the best that can be done and all my numbers look good, then I will learn in time to be satisfied with where I am.

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What about you ladies AND gents, how do you handle weight gain physically and mentally? Let me know in the comments or on any of these other platforms.

Until next time, see you at the MALL, where I’ll be buying something that doesn’t require sucking in or Spanx.

Photos: MsThorns