On Good Friday of this year, Mr. Narwhal, MOH Cass, her boyfriend, and I had a crazy eventful day. We somehow managed to get ourselves four tickets for a 500 ticket secret exclusive Mumford and Sons concert.
The concert had one rule. No cell phones or cameras allowed. As someone who has spent too much time at a concert trying to record a song (that I never watch!), or taking a ton of photos that all look the same, I now try to only take a few pictures and put my phone away to be present at concerts. You never quite enjoy the experience as much looking through a lens. Not being allowed a phone or camera added a whole other level of presence to a concert, and that night was truly one of the best musical experiences of my life. It was my third Mumford concert, and while each has been incredibly special, this one had another layer captured by the experience of real presence.
Our wedding is still seven months away, but you better believe I’ve already gotten a fitness plan going. I’m not one to crash diet or cleanse (the cabbage soup diet was a huge fail for me), so it is slow and steady all the way! I actually started this regime March 1st as part of my bikini-prep program. I’ve renamed it Wedding Weight Loss, but the truth is that I’m not really trying to lose a ton of weight. My goal was to lose a little fat and then really work to build up some lean muscle. My main goal is to “tighten” (as they say in Knocked Up). Once I pick my dress I’ll know what body parts to focus my weight training on (arms, shoulders, back, waist, depending on what my dress shows), but that’s not for a while. Until then, here is what I’m doing.
One of Mr. S’s hobbies is fitness and making bigger muscles. He loves his gym time and all the science behind “getting swole.” We have an area designated in the kitchen for all his protein powders and pre/post-workout potions. Me? I like cheese. I mean, I’m a regular at the gym but I’ll only do what I enjoy. Zumba is my absolute favorite. I love to dance and Zumba classes have filled the void that college club-hopping left behind.
I jokingly asked Mr. S for a picture for this post. He took me very seriously.
As I alluded to in my previous post, yoga has been helping me shed some extra grad-school pounds before the wedding. I’ve been saying for a while, a year maybe, that it was time to get into shape for the wedding. I had a plan of starting early, being in great shape, and just staying in good shape for the wedding, rather than trying to drop a bunch of weight just before the wedding. Of course, life got in the way, I started a new, more stressful job, and I had a brutal semester of school that caused me to pretty much live at school and work for the entire fall semester.
By the end of that semester, my stress-and-convenience eating was out of control, and to boot, I had been too busy to make my yoga classes more often than not. I was a mess, and I felt awful. I was at my heaviest point of life, which wouldn’t bother me if I wasn’t so out of shape, but I was unnecessarily heavy.
That was pretty much how I felt. Sorry for the awkward toe pic—I don’t like feet. / Image via livescience
As someone who lives a high-stress life, between the stresses I put on myself (grad school, part-time job), and the stresses that can’t really be avoided (stressful full-time job), coping with stress is a major issue that impacts your mental and physical well-being. I’ve always lived a pretty busy life, and my jobs have pretty much all been stressful, so it’s something I have just grown accustomed to. As you can imagine, though, adding wedding planning to the mix is a whooooole lotta crazy. One way I’ve dealt with this, as you already know, is by having a long engagement to spread the stress out and make it more manageable.
And since I’m sure you’re wondering, “What’s the other major coping mechanism that you use for stress management, Miss P?”
When I had narrowed my wedding-dress choice down to two top contenders, I took turns wearing each in front of a floor length mirror in the front of the shop (so I could see what they looked like in a more natural setting than the dressing room). As I was standing there, trying to decide if the dress I had on was the one I would wear when I walked down the aisle, my mom came over. I thought she might be coming over to tell me how beautiful I looked or to show me that the dress brought her to tears.
That’s not what happened. Instead, she walked over, put her hands on my shoulder, and pulled them back so I would stand up straighter. Apparently, I had been slouching.
Ninety percent of my work is done on the computer, which means I’m sitting at a desk at least 40 hours a week. After my mom pointed out my posture, I started noticing that I spend most of my day kind of hunched over my keyboard. There are definitely health problems that can come from this new habit, but I’m also worried about something more short term—my wedding day.
Plus size. Big boned. Big and beautiful. Curvy. Fluffy.
Yeah, I could fall into all of the above categories. And not that I’m ashamed of it, I just wish I wasn’t so fluffy. It’s not like my size just started to be on the larger side. As Mr. PB nicely put it not too long ago, I will always have my cheeks. I mean, they’ve been with me for quite some time now.
Pretty sure I was sleeping because all of the pink made me nauseous. / Personal photo
About five years ago I was determined to have cupcakes for my birthday. But I couldn’t find them anywhere in Mexico City (now they are all over the place). So I decided to bake them myself.
The day I baked for the first time
I enjoyed baking so much that I decided to start baking for friends and family. Soon, people I didn’t know were asking me to bake for them, and I did. And so, my new business began. With my new career path also came some uninvited guests: a huge carb addiction, sleepless nights, and lots of pounds!
So remember all that hard work I put into ensuring I a) fit into my wedding dress with room to spare and b) had killer arms for the wedding photos? After nine months of meticulous calorie counting (portion control was key since there was no way I was giving up carbs, sweets, and wine) and a few months of P90X, I had the wedding body I always dreamed of having.
And then, leftover wedding cake and cupcakes happened. And the summertime happened. With the wedding over and my goal achieved, I totally fell off the “staying fit” wagon.
It’s the curse of the inevitable Newlywed 15! OK, not so much a curse, but in my case it was more about not having a specific goal after the wedding and therefore losing the motivation to maintain a healthy lifestyle. And the honeymoon didn’t help—I probably gained about five pounds just on that trip alone (granted, we were gone for almost four weeks, but still!).