train the trainer

by MrsFatass on August 21, 2016


It’s no secret I have had kind of a challenging year.

For about seven months I have been living with varying degrees of near-constant pain in my ass. And not the figurative my husband and kids are driving me nuts kind of pain in my ass, I mean literal honest to goodness I can’t sit I can’t stand I can’t think straight pain. In my ass.

If you’ve been reading here a while then you know that butt problems are kind of a fact of life for me. The beauty of pregnancy and childbirth has resulted not only in two amazing children, but also a whole group of visitors back there who make themselves known every now and again, usually leading up to some important trip or race or vacation or even just a long weekend where I am secretly in agony but can’t really share much about it because believe it or not, in real life there ARE topics that even I don’t bring up in most social situations. And having those issues treated here in this small town means that very often I’m lying on the examining table having my buttcheek lifted by somebody who will later turn up in a Zumba class, or answering two hundred and fifty seven questions about my poop that are being asked by someone I have partied with at an Ugly Prom. For real.

So, the bottom line is this: I had symptoms return, snowball, and eventually take over my life, make me frustrated, weepy and bleak. Even though I was going to work and taking care of my kids and getting them through basketball and play rehearsal and the end of school, even though I was walking the dogs and getting the laundry done and doing all of the things that I normally do, underneath it all I was in pain. A lot of pain.  And while I should have called the doctor, because I have had so many symptoms so many times, I did what many of us do when we have a recurring health issue, I pulled out the last bit of medicine that was prescribed the last time, and tried to handle things myself.

But it got worse.

And worse.

And one day I was crying and Googling and I found an article about butt problems, and in scanning the comments I realized that these? These were my people. Talking about the constant pain and the around the clock obsession with it, the fear of eating, the hours spent in the bathtub, the frustration with trying to make your spouse understand. And I realized that I wasn’t dealing with what I had dealt with before. Nope. The journey of my butt problems had progressed from THROMBOSED HEMMHOROID to FISSURE.

Yeah, I put that all in all caps.

A fissure is a tear in there where the poop comes out and basically if you eat, then you will eventually have to poop, and if you have to poop and you have a fissure then every time it passes through it basically scrapes across that tear and can make it worse, and your body wants to tense up because OH MY GOSH IT HURTS, and THAT can make it worse, and also once you have finally gotten through the actual going to the bathroom part, you also can experience this kind of spasm for hours afterward that is kind of like your whole colon flipping you a big giant bird for making it go through that whole painful pooping process in the first place, and it is just this never ending process of the before pain, the during pain, and the after pain. PLUS your bathroom ends up looking like a crime scene.

Can you see why people don’t talk about this?

Well. Once I realized that what was happening this time was different than what has happened in the past, I hightailed it to the doctor for yet another embarrassing appointment where I knew not one, but TWO of the nurses asking me questions about my poop and assisting with the examination. But whatever. By that point all I wanted was a cure. And that cure came in the form of a cream that helps increase the blood flow to the area (ummmm, REALLY? THAT’S how we cure this thing? MORE blood flow??) but I took it, and I also became the model patient in terms of hydration, fiber intake, and avoiding that which would make me constipated.

Oy.

And it took a few tries and the better part of the summer, but finally after many long months and many sitz baths, I have healed. Thank you jesus. As confirmed by a colonoscopy, the fissure has mended and though there is a referral to the surgeon for a consult on the other guys, my colon is healthy and happier than it has been in a very long time.

Now, if you can believe it, that whole saga was just exposition. This post? Is about yoga. Because, while it was the medicine that healed my body, my spirit got pretty banged up through all of this. I mean, I know that there are many people that go through way worse, but for me, this was the worst physical pain I have ever felt in my life, and somehow that got compounded by the fact that it was all about my booty. I guess because it seemed kind of taboo to talk about it, or because it carried some kind of shame, or maybe because it was constant and it made it hard for me to want to do pretty much anything, it really just made me depressed.

But I couldn’t just curl up in a sitz bath ball and hide away from life like I wanted to. I had to work. I had to move. I had to be positive and motivating and encouraging and happy.

And then I’d come home and be exhausted and moody and sad.

It was hard to want to work out and eat right and do all the things I coach others to do. I cancelled on two races I had trained for. I was short with my family. I got into a pretty negative headspace. And even as my body slowly began to feel better, I just wasn’t myself.

Then one morning at the park as I was picking up after a training group, one of my clients mentioned doing yoga with her husband the day before.  The words rolled around in my brain for an hour afterward.

It was like the sun coming out from behind the clouds.

By the end of the day I was a gym member once again.

In a few weeks, it will be the 8 year anniversary of moving to this town. I pouted for a good year once we got here; I didn’t want to pack up and leave my family and friends back home. It took a while to even want to open up and meet people, and once I did, it took a while to find the right people. One day something inside me steered my car into the parking lot of the Y, and in the packet of information I collected was a group fitness calendar.  Even before I did Zumba or Spin or any of the classes that led to where I am today as a trainer, I practiced yoga, first in college, later in a trendy Hot Yoga studio near my hometown, and then at this little family YMCA. Several years ago, attending these classes helped redefine my outlook. I could love it for being a fantastic workout, for the flexibility and endorphins, and because my practice was my own. I could make it as challenging or as gentle as I needed on any given day. It felt good.

Yoga gave me my smile back.

So I went back to that gym to get signed up again, and to grab a new calendar. There were some butterflies walking back in, after having worked there for a while, and then leaving to open Trio. But they flew away quickly. Within minutes I was greeted with a warm hug from a former coworker, and as we talked, several others came by to say hello and to catch up. Before I knew it, a half an hour had passed, full of laughs and talking with the folks who trained me long before I got up in front of a class myself. As we chatted, I shared a little bit about why I was back; that I had gone through some heath things that had basically stolen my personal motivation, and that if I was going to keep working both for myself AND for my clients, I needed to get my  happy back.

There wasn’t one person in the group who didn’t understand that in some way. It felt good to have that connection with others who do what I do, who could relate to feeling discouraged to do for themselves what they were paid to do for others.

Since that first day, I’ve gone in several times for class or to work out, and I am usually asked by someone if I’m going to teach Zumba again, or if the Y will let me bring BodyFlow or RIPPED or KNOCKOUT. While I appreciate the sentiment, my answer is always the same: my purpose for being back here is my own. I want to take some time to be the member, to be taught and trained, and to do things that will replenish the excitement and passion that became so depleted over the last few months.

It’s been a good thing, reconnecting. While there may be those who might not love that I’m working out there again, it’s okay. Everyone can choose their own experience, and mine has been wonderful. It has given me a lot of joy to catch up with people I used to see every day, to be invited to various classes, and to sweat and swear and try not to die alongside of folks who are happy to share their enthusiasm with me. We can let our personal challenges stifle us, or we can evolve, the choice is ours. I choose transformation.

At Trio, I would occasionally end a fitcamp session with a class called Train the Trainer; basically the clients would lead, and I’d be the one to DO it all. They enjoyed seeing me get my butt kicked, and I’d enjoy just getting to be the student again.

I am enjoying being the student again.

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our ordinary summer

by MrsFatass on August 8, 2016

To my precious Thing One and Thing Two,

It’s been a while since I’ve written you two a letter. I’ve missed some birthdays and some sweet conversations and there are so many moments of ours that I’ve wanted to preserve here and I just haven’t.

I haven’t taken the time. I haven’t made it a priority.

I’m sitting at my desk right now while you two are both laying on the couch with the dogs, sniffling and coughing your way through a cold. It’s a Diary of a Wimpy Kid, popcicle, oils in the diffuser, pajamas on all day kind of day and the two of you are players on the same team, enjoying the laziness and the freedom from any chores or responsibilities and the fact that I let you both eat ice cream out of the carton for breakfast on a Monday.

I’m not sure if you’ll remember this summer break being different than any others, or where it will rank on the list of favorite memories, but for me, this has been the best one yet. Not because of anything fancy, really. Quite the opposite. Life this summer has been ordinary. We needed some ordinary. I needed to reclaim ordinary of family life, without distraction, without always being on the receiving end of somebody else’s issues, without feeling like I was making it through each day but just barely. I was leaving too many things up to other people, to chance, to The Universe, to I don’t know who, too many things I was overlooking or justifying because I just couldn’t figure out how to get more hours out of the day, more clients through the door, more money in the bank, more whatever we needed more of.
And you two? Kind of paid the price.

I’d love to say I got off of my own rollercoaster, and that the lesson I learned about my priorities was my own, but it wasn’t. I was kind of forced into our ordinary summer. Getting fired didn’t take my WORK away, it didn’t take away my clients or my income. But it took a certain kind of pressure away. Getting fired gave me autonomy I didn’t have even when I owned the studio, because of overhead and payroll and partners and budgets. I was let go, and all of a sudden I knew I’d been given a chance that not many people are given; it was like I won the lottery and I wasn’t going to squander a moment of it. Getting fired gave me a shot at ordinary.

So. First? First, I took my family back.

It started with cable. We shut it off, turned in our boxes, and reclaimed control over what you both were watching. Between channel flipping, commercials, seeing things in other people’s homes that were inappropriate for your ages, we just felt the need for a media detox. This summer we have watched more family movies and played more games of checkers than it is even possible to count.


We also put you on lock down from summer camps. Our annual trip to Florida was not planned around Thing One’s basketball camp; rather all four of us went down together and had lazy days at the beach, played with cousins, went to the water park, and spent time with your grandparents. And our time back home was just that – our time. We took day trips to parks and went hiking, we filled the van full of kids and went to the movies, we read books and played pick up sticks and we ran our own basketball conditioning camp in the driveway. We went tubing on a lazy river, we stayed up late, waiting for it to cool off enough to walk the dogs, and we bought fireworks at the grocery store and had our own show in the driveway. I kept the two of you busy together. I have three big brothers and none of us are particularly close – but we also aren’t anywhere close in age and I didn’t have the same years and years of living in the same house with them that the two of you do. You two have five years left before one of you leaves for college; I want the two of you to have TOGETHER memories, and the foundation of a friendship that will last you well into adulthood.

I also gave you both lots of chores this summer. I took the excruciating time to teach you how to fold clothes and wash dishes and clean the bathroom. You know how to change over the laundry and start the machines. You know what kind of cleaner to use on the tub and in the toilet. You know when it’s time to feed the dogs and you know what day we put the bins to the curb. Thing One, you know how to install a door knob. Thing Two, you know how to make toast and sandwiches. Together we have caught up on many of the odds and ends, replacing light bulbs and changing drawer pulls and finally getting a coat of paint on things. You went through your own toys and clothes and put together bags of things to donate. Together, we took care of our home.

And your dad and I reclaimed the power of No. Sometimes to you (No, you may not have a phone Thing Two). (Thing One, if you won’t wear a helmet than you can’t have a bike) and sometimes to other parents (Thing One isn’t available to spend the weekend) (Thing Two isn’t allowed to go out of town without us just yet). I decided to stop worrying about what other moms might think and remember that I am the one who knows best how to parent you. I know that you, Thing Two, are emotional and sensitive, and telling you not to take something personally is like telling you not to be who you are. I know that there is someone that you miss, but I love that you are able to articulate why the friendship didn’t fit you anymore. I respect that you aren’t (yet) in any hurry to grow up, that you prefer the company of girls who, for the moment, are still content to be young, and silly, and innocent.

And you, Thing One, I know that you are ready for a little more independence. You have proven that you are responsible and that you make friends who are also good people. I always know you are safe and loved when you are across the street, but I have also gotten to know more of the basketball moms, and the pack of boys you roam the neighborhood with know that I’m going to tell them all to watch for cars and text their moms and to get home before dark. I know you love that I’ve taught you how to back the cars up in the driveway when you want to play ball, and I know that you love that I have taken you to an empty parking lot and begun teaching you to drive. Which is like our hilarious inside joke.


And I also know you liked it when I spent a week volunteering at your school, even though we kept things chill and played it cool when we saw each other in the hallway.

Maybe I am romanticizing an ordinary summer that, to you, was nothing special. But to me, it’s been everything. I don’t know how long it will last. One day it will be winter and my freedom will change and I may get busy and distracted again. There is a second whole bullet point to this post, and it’s that I also took control of the way I work, and it is entirely possible that very soon I’ll have to go back to something more ‘traditional.’ But my first thought when I wake up in the morning is to be thankful for the blessings. I have so many.

Thank you, Things, for a most wonderful, ordinary summer.


Love,
Mama

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by any other name

by MrsFatass on March 14, 2016

We had our first meeting at the gym, me, the Fitness Director, and the owner, and I made it through with minimal flopsweat. It was fun, actually, talking through my resume and hearing about somebody else’s business plans and vision. And I managed not to use the word fatass even once, not even when we were all acknowledging how potential clients choose their trainers for a variety of reasons, including that trainer’s appearance. My curves were not the elephant in the room as I initially feared. They, too, understood that my ass was an asset.

So a first interview led to a second, outside of the gym, where it was more of a getting to know the bigger picture about each other, sharing life experiences and pieces of our faith journeys and this time I was super nervous about eating in front of them because eating on a first date is always nerve wracking. Are they analyzing what I order? Can I drink diet soda? Do I talk with my mouth sort of full and risk spitting food? Do I have spinach in my teeth?

But once again I was put at ease when we said grace before our meal. Yep. Right there in Panera we prayed together and I’m a pray-er every single day, even though I don’t always do it before a meal in public, but so what, because this time? This time in that restaurant our grace put me at ease because they were showing me who they were in inviting me to be a part of it and it felt really good to be included in that moment.

I don’t know. It just did.

And we talked for an hour and I managed not to choke even once.

As we were wrapping up the conversation they shared with me the two “rules” they had that anyone who came to work in this gym needed to be aware of and willing to live by.

Number One: No drama. What? Really? No interpersonal issues or gossip or bitching or badmouthing? Just grown up people who care about their jobs coming together in a positive place to help people? Is that the hallelujah chorus I hear playing in the background? SIGN ME UP!

Number Two: No profanity.

Blink. Blink blink.

Well, damn. Cue the flopsweat.

So we shook on it and planned some more conversations and I excitedly got a Victory Fitness tee shirt and shaker bottle and began making plans for my drama free, profanity free journey across town.
It’s been a wonderful move. Even without the colorful language. I feel so thankful that these folks have trusted me to join this team of – as promised – grown ups who act like grown ups, who are smart and knowledgeable and who do their jobs in an environment that is absent of drama and negativity. And to appreciate that isn’t to say my previous workplace WAS filled with drama and negativity, but it’s to say that I am old enough and experienced enough to understand that this is a special thing that is to be protected. You know? And that type of mature and positive attitude, coupled with a facility that is bright and clean and state of the art pretty much means that I feel like I won the lottery.

Now, profanity jokes aside, I never felt like I HAD to change myself to fit into Victory. But I do feel like my move there is part of an evolution. I wasn’t going back to being an employee in the gyms I worked in before, but I also knew I wasn’t Trio anymore. And while in my heart I am always MrsFatass, I knew that I couldn’t have a business card on the Victory front desk with the word ass all over it. Even if I wanted to, it wasn’t respectful of the rule, and it just didn’t feel like the right move on my part either.

So, after playing around with a few word choices, I settled on FullFigureFit.

In the short term it was my new email address and the name of the Facebook group for clients, and then quietly late last week I transitioned my Instagram and Twitter, and today on my Facebook profile. It just makes sense to make this change across the board, right?

But as for the blog, for now it is still MrsFatass dot com. Partly because I wouldn’t even begin to know how to change it, and partly because I never really know exactly what to do with it anymore. I love having it here when I have the desire to write, but like with lots of you, I find it easier to have meaningful interactions in other places. So we’ll see.

For now, I invite you to follow FullFigureFit on Instagram or Twitter, and to ask to join our Facebook group FullFigureFit if you’re interested in what I’m up to as a trainer and diet coach.

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thirtyfive inches

by MrsFatass on February 26, 2016

ashley_graham-sports_illustratedBack in 2014, when I had to do a driveby spent 18 glorious hours in Savannah with my Fitbloggin’ family, I had the honor of cohosting a conversation with Steve titled “Fitblogger Tough Love”. We tackled the idea that the very thing that makes our tribe so awesome – our supportiveness, understanding, and positivity- could also be the thing that holds us back from accomplishing some of our health, weight or fitness goals. Because we know that no matter how many times we stumble and fall, we always have a place in this group to get back on the horse and start again. Where is the line between accountability and enabling? You know?

Well, that notion continues to roll around and evolve in my mind even two years later. I’m a weight loss blogger with no weight loss success story, but I’m also a health seeker with an ever growing list of badass accomplishments. I’m a diet coach/personal trainer who is also for all intents and purposes fat.  But I run and jump and box and lift and tri.

Well, this week the hot topic of conversation has been both about the “rookie bombshell” and Sports Illustrated plus size covergirl Ashley Graham’s bikini cover photo (general consensus: BOOM! You GO Ashley and Sports Illustrated), and the reaction of former minus-sized model Cheryl Tiegs, who says SI is glamorizing an unhealthy waist size physique (general consensus: BONK! You are what’s wrong with America, woman!)

And here’s the deal. I think Sports Illustrated did a pretty ballsy and cool thing with their approach to the swimsuit covers this year, featuring three women with very different body types and bringing light to the notion that beauty is widely defined and complex and shouldn’t be boiled down to a number.

I also wonder if Cheryl Tiegs is only half wrong.

Say WHAT? Um, MrsFatass, Cheryl Tiegs quoted Dr. Oz as the source to stick with on this matter. She sad SI was ‘glamorizing’ full figured models like that was a BAD thing. And she said that thing about having such a pretty face. Fat girls HATE that saying. Have you bumped your head? Why are you not ripping her a new one?

I know. I KNOW! She certainly said some stupid, misguided things. And I could spend the next hour writing about how many thin models smoke and drink diet coke and over train to stay skinny, and look up some statistics about models and eating disorders, and really it wouldn’t be hard to decimate her and lots of folks are out there are doing just that. And also I tend to think that maybe from a psychological point of view, on the inside she might be feeling some kind of way about the things SHE had to do in order to stay on top as a model back then, and the acceptance of a more REAL physique today could just stirring up something emotional in her. I don’t know. Maybe she really is just an idiot.

But…is there room in this conversation to recognize the fact that while there are many of us who are living a healthy life, even at our full figured size, there are many of us who are using this Beauty At Any Size as an excuse to be/stay/remain unhealthy?

That’s where it gets a little dicey.

I guess the first thing we would have to agree on is what defines healthy. Weight, blood pressure, cholesterol, blood sugar levels, thyroid – do we define health based on what a doctor tells us? Does the way we eat figure into that? Do we have to work out to be considered healthy? Be moderately active? Is it possible to be healthy and sedentary?

I know people who are thin who have horrible problems with blood pressure and cholesterol, and who cant walk up a flight of stairs. But according to Cheryl, their waist size would qualify them to be glamorized on the cover of a magazine. I know big people who can run circles around me. I know people who have great bloodwork results but whose diet is comprised of a steady stream of 350 calorie coffee drinks, vending machine chips and Girl Scout Cookies. And I know me.

I have gone to doctors for help because it truly seems like the more healthy behaviors I acquire, the more weight I gain. I don’t eat sweets. No sugar in my coffee, no donut, no Girl Scout Cookie time. I have eliminated countless foods that inflame or bloat. I manage my macros and I also count my calories and I am about 75% successful in eating whole, non-processed foods. I work out almost daily and my leisure time activities include ridiculous things like triathlon training. So I’m not sure how it’s possible that I am 30 pounds heavier today than I was in 2010 but I am, and the best I can get from a doctor is a prescription for Phentermine.

Yeah, no thanks.

And then, what makes somebody beautiful?

I don’t have an answer but I do know this: I wake up every day and wonder how I can get out of having to work out that day (I can’t. I actually WORK at a gym so there is absolutely no way to get out of it). I wake up every day and choose to whole unprocessed food because it makes me FEEL strong an energetic (and not just use my daily calorie allotment in just egg rolls and cheesecake if I’m going to be fat anyway). And I also know that my self-confidence does occasionally make me want to be lazy because lets face it – I’m hot – and at this point I don’t have bad knees or constant sciatica or a litany of “conditions” that many of my fellow women of stature have. So even at this size I can be happy and active and do basically anything I want to do so it’s up to me to actually go out and DO it. In my humble opinion, hustle is hot, laziness is not. (hashtag I can rhyme like Johnny Cochran).

Finally, we need to agree that while it is possible to be beautiful at any size, the opposite also holds true.

When we wrapped our conversation in Savanna it was on a very positive and encouraging note, suggesting the ways we could support one another and hold each other accountable, but nicely. And while I wasn’t looking to dismantle the love and support that is kind of the Fitbloggin’ hallmark, I’m still not quite sure we really had the tough conversation. And the reality is that there are people who will always find the reason not to follow through. There are people who will soak up the love and support of their fellow health seeking warriors, even as they drive past the gym in order to get home in time to meet the pizza delivery guy at the door. Because hey, tomorrow is another day, and today was long and I’m tired and work sucked and I don’t have time to work out…

Even so, I think it is awesome and amazing that Sports Illustrated is helping to highlight the fact that you don’t have to be a size zero to be beautiful. This air of acceptance of curves is a positive thing. And even if there are some who use this as a reason to be fat or unhealthy, let us not forget that there already IS a segment of our population who is unhealthy, overweight, and out of shape. Maybe? Some of those folks will feel more empowered and confident about doing something to impact their health if they feel less judged by their size, shape or physique right out of the gate. Maybe people who have a more positive self-image are more apt to do more positive things than someone who feels ugly.

And Cheryl may have a 35 inch waist (or smaller), but it does not make her beautiful.

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love and like

by MrsFatass on February 8, 2016

To my Doodlebug,

It’s time to sit down and acknowledge another year. And once again, the first words that come to mind are simply “I can’t believe how fast it’s gone by.” You’re a teenager now. And I can’t. I just can’t believe how fast it’s gone by. Even though I still see glimpses of the baby you were, more and more what I see are glimpses of the man you are becoming. As much as I love you, I’m so glad to be able to say I also really like you. I enjoy it so much when your guard is totally down and you’re just relaxed and funny and smart and thoughtful. You’ve always been a kid with a lot on your mind, and I appreciate it when you share those thoughts with me. I understand well your worries and anxieties, and I hope that it has at least occasionally comforted you that I share so many of the same ones. I hope it’s helpful that I get you.
Photo Dec 31, 6 00 02 PM
This was another big year for you, my sweet Thing One. Another year where it makes me both joyous and tearful to think about all of the different ways you’ve grown up. You even LOOK more grown up. Basketball season made you lean, and you can see the results of the daily workouts in your shoulders and your waist and your calves. I’m glad you’re so good about showers and deodorant because it’s totally time for you to be paying attention to those things. And that silly tooth that has made you so self-conscious is finally being pulled into place. I love your braces smile, and your shaggy hair, and the way you look when you have to dress up for away games. You look good in a tie and a belt.

Photo Jan 28, 7 44 42 AM

Girls like you too, and I suspect that first kiss is going to be happening sooner rather than later. You have a crush on your best girl friend, and I like her too. She’s clean and makeup free and wears jeans and converse. She’s always smiling when I see her and I think she looks like she’s comfortable in her own skin. She watched you play basketball this season too, and I’m happy that she cheers loudly. I know you like her, uh, shapeliness, and that’s totally okay by me that you like looking at pretty girls because I know that you are also a kind person. I know you’ll be nice to any girl you date. And we have talked at length about the importance of being respectful, of NOT doing the kiss and tell, and how different life is for a girl with a reputation than it is for a boy. You have also asked me about who pays when you go on a date, and we have practiced what you should do when you meet parents, from the handshake to the small talk. Because talking to adults is still something that is very hard for you to do.

Photo Jan 25, 5 53 06 PM
It was an important year for you in basketball, too.

For the very first time, you had to try out for your spot. You had to combat nerves and you had to open yourself up to the possibility of disappointment. All you wanted to do was survive the first round of cuts, which you did. And you survived the second round, too. The day you made the team was a huge high for the whole family! But this was the year you also learned that tryouts were just the beginning. Making the team didn’t guarantee you playing time. You rode the bench, and in the beginning it was heartbreaking. I honestly wasn’t sure which way this was going to go; would you roll your eyes and say forget this and head back to Upward? Or would you put your head down and work?

To say I’m proud of you just doesn’t do it justice.

Photo Feb 04, 6 00 46 PM
You worked hard. You put it all into practice. You got your hopes up every single game, and the first time Coach put you in, it didn’t even matter that it was for just a few seconds at the end, and it didn’t matter that you never got your hands on the ball. It didn’t matter. That first time being put in the game made you happy and it made you hungry for more.

And as the season progressed, so did your playing time. You earned it.

Photo Jan 28, 5 29 36 PM

We decided in the car on Friday that we were going to skip the part of teenager-hood where you and I don’t get along, where you roll your eyes at everything I say or where you stop wanting to hang out with me or be seen with me in public. We decided that we were always going to be just like us. Mother and son and friends and confidantes. I hope that’s true. Because I love you and because I like you. I like you so very much.

To my Doodlebug, my Thing One, my baby boy, my love. Happy Birthday.

Photo Feb 06, 2 38 41 PM

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Confident and Consistent

by MrsFatass on January 4, 2016

So if it’s true what they say, that what you do on New Year’s Day is what you’ll do all year, then I’ll be spending the year being super bad ass with really amazing women who are ALSO being super bad ass.

One of these women has a fear of water, one of these women is already wearing her bathing suit, and one of these women is pretty sure the hardest part of the whole event will be T1.

One of these women has a fear of water, one of these women is already wearing her bathing suit, and one of these women is pretty sure the hardest part of the whole event will be T1.

Okay, so on the ACTUAL New Year’s Day I was eating nachos and watching football, but I’m going to bend this saying around what it is I actually want to say. And what I want to say is that I am FINALLY a triathlete!

Didn't die!

Didn’t die!

My first Tri was supposed to be last October, but lo and behold a hurricane blew through these parts and our event was cancelled. So we had to hang on for the Indoor Tri sponsored by Lifetime Fitness. But it was good because it kept me training – at least minimally – through part of the off season and I walked into the gym MUCH more confident than I would have been at the event in October. I mean, I spend all day every day in a gym, and I’m on and off spin bikes and treadmills multiple times a week. I haven’t spent much time in the pool, but this event is based on TIME not DISTANCE and so I figured worst case scenario I could dog paddle or even walk in the pool for 10 minutes.

Turns out I had a great swim. NOT because it was a beautiful crawl, because it was anything but. It was a lot of breast stroke and quite a bit of backstroke because my start-of-the-race adrenaline turned my already shaky crawl into an I-can’t-find-my-breath mess and so I just let it go. But my goal was to keep moving for the entire time and I did. I moved for 300 yards and I’m totally happy with that. The bike was hilarious, first because we were a minute and a half late (turns out blowing off transition practice was a mistake) and second was because I was face to face with and absolute BEAST of a competitor who had a snarl, and who growled, and who was cycling at a rate of speed I didn’t think was possible in a spin studio. But I just laughed it off and kept my own goals in mind and I LOVE to cycle, so I just enjoyed the music and pedaled my way to 8 miles, which was my goal. And I can’t remember how far I went on the treadmill, somewhere just under a mile and a half I think. I jogged a little and walked a lot and again I just enjoyed myself and remembered that I didn’t register to COMPETE, I just registered to COMPLETE. And that’s what I did. I completed. I was super happy. I AM super happy.

I already have two more triathlons on the books (March and May) and my goal is to participate in one event a month from March through I don’t know when. September? October? Walks, runs, Triathlons, obstacle courses, whatever. Just one thing a month to keep me CONSISTENTLY training.

Ah, CONSISTENCY. The point of this post.

It’s the time of year that many of us resolve to do certain things, choose our anthem for the year, our battle cries and our mantras. The last few years I have chosen my words wisely, from “Do More Cardio” to “Remember Gratitude” to “Be Thankful”. And really, I’ve done a good job keeping them with me for the entire chosen year and beyond. I have two words this year also. 2016 will be the year of CONFIDENCE and CONSISTENCY.

Confidence, you ask? Um, MrsFatass, have you met you? I know, I know. I say live in your discomfort zone! Wear your bikini now! But to be completely honest, there have been a number of things that have happened the last year or so that have shaken up the fatass foundation, and I’m having to work a bit to recover the self confidence that I wore so proudly when I was encouraging you all to strut in a bikini. But I am. I did. I finally took a breath, straightened my big girl panties, and fixed some things in my life that weren’t working. And now I’m ready to do those things that will remind me to be confident. And hopefully we’ll do a lot of those things together, you and me.

And? I need to do those things CONSISTENTLY. I will be consistent in my efforts.

Efforts to what? You might be asking.

Efforts to everything. My effort to train, to be organized, to cook more, to drink diet soda less, to walk the dogs, and also? To write here. Once a week. 52 posts in 2016. Consistently. Whatever it is that I decide needs to be a thing will be a thing consistently. I will see it through.

Inconsistency has stalled my weight loss, allowed my house to be messier than I’d like, made my savings account emptier than it could be, and left a hundred posts half written in my head. And my excuse reason the last few years has always been The Business! The Business! The Business!

But I have made a big change in my life. And I am ready for more.

If you see me on a Friday, ask me if I've been to the pool yet. Fridays will CONSISTENTLY be my swim practice day!

If you see me on a Friday, ask me if I’ve been to the pool yet. Fridays will CONSISTENTLY be my swim practice day!

In 2016, I will rediscover my self-confidence, and I will be consistent in my efforts.

What are YOU going to do this year?

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life after

by MrsFatass on December 15, 2015

So, like any self-respecting obsessed business owner, making the decision to close the studio left a big hole in both my heart and identity. If I wasn’t half of trio (math!), who was I going to be?

I didn’t have the luxury of a long period of soul searching. I didn’t get to go away for a while in order to come back reinvented. I didn’t really even get a weekend to hide away under the covers and mope about the decision to close Trio Fitness. I needed to figure out the next step and I needed to figure it out fast.

But I had no idea where to start.

Attacking it with my business brain was a first resort. A RESUME! I must write a resume! A Google search of fitness resumes, a couple hours of scribbles and typing and editing and proofreading and BLAMMO! MrsFatass had a fitness resume.

No matter how hard I tried I couldn't squeeze all that awesome into one page.

No matter how hard I tried I couldn’t squeeze all that awesome into one page.

Next up, a cover letter. A cover letter! I’m a writer! I can write a letter!

Dear Sirs,
You will notice from my resume that I am a rock star group fitness instructor who just so happens to also have a fat ass and even though I know I shouldn’t make excuses for it because fit comes in all shapes and sizes, I sometimes become overwhelmed with insecurity because if I’m doing all the things I coach others to do, why am I still so dang, uh, curvy?
Also, I am the mother of two and wife of a Trophy Husband with a very demanding new job and I’ve worked for myself for years so I’m going to need autonomy and flexibility and I don’t ever want to miss a basketball game or a class party and also I need to be home when the kids get off the bus so I can fix them a healthy snack and hear about their day.
Can we make this happen, like, ASAP? Kthanks.
MrsFatass

That’s where my business brain coughed a very sick little cough and powered down for the day. No way was someone who didn’t already know me going to hire me to work in fitness.

So I began thinking about the things that I missed. Like, when the stresses of owning the business were beginning to snowball, what were the things I started letting go of?

  • Being present at home. I was always marketing, communicating, brainstorming, social media-ing. I was also working an early morning shift, a lunchtime shift, and an evening shift almost every weekday, which meant family time was squished, distracted, and sometimes just lost.
  • Being present at church. Sundays became the only day I didn’t teach a class, and often were the only day in a week where I didn’t have to perform a bunch of work related tasks so it became Pajama Day instead of being a time for worship.
  • Being present with my clients. Planning classes and learning new choreography was top of my priority list, but would get pushed down so far of the actual TO-DO list because of other things that I was often concentrating more on the choreo than the connection.

So. I woke up the next morning and I stayed in bed for a minute before hopping out to get ready for work. And? I prayed.

Please help me.

Then I grabbed my phone and my tennis ball and went to the bathroom as I do every morning to scroll facebook and roll my sore feet while I sit there because gosh darnit I am a MULTITASKER baby and I kid you not this was at the top of my feed:

Photo Dec 15, 9 15 21 AM

Blink. Blink Blink.

Now I knew who to write a letter to. And I knew that I could lay the insecurity down and just be me. I printed things up and licked the stamp and sent it on it’s way to the gym on the other side of town.

And waited.

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December 1, 2015

not on fighting the old

My very first post here was almost six years ago. Six years ago! Six years ago I was a full time stay at home mom, I still had a child in diapers, I had never uttered the word crapball, or taken a Zumba class, or eaten quinoa. And when I introduced myself, I led with […]

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August 19, 2015

we make the rockin’ world go ’round

A million moons ago I wrote a post called The Bikini Promise. Basically it was my ode to not waiting for perfect circumstances to do something you want to do. For me, it started with a bikini, and while I needed some platform sandals, lipstick and a wide brimmed floppy hat to carry off the […]

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July 29, 2015

tables

My friend sent me that meme yesterday and it’s been stuck in my head. It’s funny how quickly things can change. One minute you’re riding your beach cruiser through the neighborhood with the kids, the next minute you are being fitted for a road bike. One minute you are floating in the pool with a […]

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