Deck the Halls with OW OW OW OW. . .

Because I work for a college, I get TWO WEEKS OFF AT CHRISTMAS!!!!!!!!

I Snoopy Dance every time I think of it.

Because 2 weeks off is AWESOME.

Because I am OFF, I have time to drive all the way to the Island to work out with Gabe!

Let me explain something to those of you who do not live in South Texas.

One of the nice things about living here is that everything is 30 minutes away.  We have virtually no traffic.

Having lived in Los Angeles, San Francisco and Phoenix, I can tell you that the short commute is awesome.

Until you live here a few years. 

Then you realize that everything important is only 5 minutes away.

Five minutes to church.

Five minutes to work.

Five minutes to the grocery store.

Five minutes to V-Fit.

So going ALL THE WAY to the Island feels far. Really, really far.  Hell, I pack a lunch to travel to the other side of the freeway.

Today I went to work out with Gabe.

Good ol’ Gabe.

Quiet, gentle Gabe.

First thing he makes me do?  Walk outs.  Then burpees.  Then more walkouts.  Then suicides, push ups, and more walkouts.  Oh yeah — they have this big rope.  I think it’s for mooring ships in hurricane force winds.  It’s about 5 inches thick.  I have to take one rope in each hand, squat, and then whip the rope as hard as I can.  So fun.  For about 30 seconds.  Then it’s pure agony.

Basically, Gabe hasn’t changed a bit.

I can’t wait to go to the Island tomorrow! 

Giving out my number. . . .

I have a new goal. 

Well, it’s actually about a month old, but I’ve been too chickenshit to write it on the blog.

See, with the Challenge over, I need something to keep me moving.

I need something to keep me progressing.

I worked out a whole year before this last challenge.  I saw some pretty good results.  Slowly but surely, the weight was coming off.  Six months after my last baby was born — June, 2008 –I went to the doctor and stepped on the scale.

It said X98.

I am going to pretend that you have no idea which integer the X represents.  I know that you know that it’s a whole number between 1 and 3, but you are too polite to notice.  Thanks.  I appreciate it.  You know how Kirstie Alley lost a bunch of weight after dancing with the stars and told everyone she was 105 when she was really more like 140?  I totally get that.

When I started working out with V Fit in July 2010 I was at X77. In 2 years, I dropped 21 lbs.

By the time the last challenge started, I was down to X59. In 1 year of working out harder than I ever have in my life, I was down 18 lbs.

More importantly, of course, I had dropped blood pressure significantly, stabilized my blood sugar and was no longer considered pre-diabetic. I was also very strong and people started telling me how great I looked.

To some people, 18 lbs sounds like a lot of weight.  For me, it was less than 10% of my total body weight. 

When we started 2011’s challenge, I wanted to have an impact.  I wanted to win dammit!

So I went to weightfuckingwatchers and worked out harder than before.

Ninety days after the challenge, I was at X44. I had lost 15 lbs.

Amazing the difference those annoying little 15 lbs made.

My clothes, which were getting baggy, simply did not fit anymore.  People who hadn’t seen me in a long time really noticed a difference.  One friend thought I lost 100 lbs.  He wasn’t trying to flatter me — he’s not that great a friend.

The fact is, since I’d seen him almost 4 years ago, I had lost 54 lbs.

But now the challenge is over. 

And I want to keep it up.

Not the weightfuckingwatchers part.  I’ll be honest — I quit WFW about a month after I started.  Because I hate it.  (Have I mentioned that before?).  I hated giving them $13 every week just so I could step on their fucking scales.  So I decided to step on my OWN fucking scale and pay myself $10.  I call it Date Watchers because when I meet my goal, we’re getting a babysitter.

I do like the concept of losing 15 lbs though.

I like it kinda a lot.

But the thing is, I don’t have a very public competition to motivate me.

Until now.

Here is the new goal:

By 2/1/12, I will be down to at least 229 by working out 5 or more times a week and eating at least 7 servings of fruits and vegetables a day.

I did it.  I said the number. 

Now everyone knows what I weigh.

I know you knew it already, but jeez.  Seeing it in writing, it looks so. . . .big.

Big in that 229 is still a big number. 

But 15 lbs is even bigger.   

Like a Virgin

If you’ve been reading my blog for any length of time, you know that I work out at V-Fit Studio.  You know that Gabe “The Silent Assassin” is my primary trainer and the studio is owned by Victor.

Handsome Victor.  Dreamy Victor. Victor the Giver

Vic the Basterd. 

Last week, Gabe wasn’t feeling well, so I did my workout with Vic.  Vic, true to form, came up with a deceptively simple workout, then made me do 10 sets.  With suicides in between.  TEN sets.

Gabe only makes me do 5.

What the hell, it was only for a day.  Besides, Victor is funny, and he flirts, and he laughs at all my jokes.  It didn’t hurt that bad. 

Then on Tuesday, Gabe is still not in, so Victor helps me again.  He gives me 10 lb weights and tells me what to do. 

I say “Actually, Gabe has me use 12 lbs on this one”.

Victor smiles and says “trust me”.

Uh oh.

Victor has an interesting new regimen. 

Low weight, high reps, no rest, many many many sets.

Many many MANY sets.

And no rest in between.


My arms are sore.  Not the pang of muscles pushed hard for a long time.  Not the sore that I get after Gabe puts me through my paces. 

My arms are sore as in I-have-never-worked-out-my-whole-life-and-I-think-I-overdid-it-my-first-time sore.  My muscles burned so much you could have lit a cigar with my shoulder. 

Haven’t I been working out for OVER A YEAR?

Haven’t I been doing things I could NEVER do before?  Like push ups from my toes, dips, walkouts and don’t forget the Around-the-Fucking-Worlds.  Haven’t I participated in TWELVE 5Ks?  Didn’t I just WIN the CHALLENGE??????????????

Apparently, all that is behind me.

It would be OK if it was just for a day or two, while Gabe is out.

Apparently, Gabe is going to open the new facility on the Island.

Gabe got promoted.


I mean, good for Gabe!  He deserves it!

So I get Victor.  Dreamy, Handsome, Sadistic Victor.

And I’m starting all over again.

Vic. And Gabe.  I know they are good looking, but DAMMIT!

My Intervention

After a killer-owie Leadership Workout on Saturday, a couple of fellow sufferers joined me for breakfast.

We spent much of the time gloating about how well we did on our stats that morning.  Victor did a mid-challenge weigh in.  As a group we lost over 50 lbs!  That’s as much as last year’s group did FOR THE WHOLE CHALLENGE! 

We’re a little excited about it.

Excited enough to go to breakfast.

Not excited enough to get french toast though.  My breakfast had spinach in it.  Yeah.  I still wanna win.

One of my companions complimented me on my journey.  She also gave to to me straight.

“You have to get rid of the skort”. 

The other girls nodded silently in agreement. 

“But I love my skort!  I can exercise without looking as if I’ve peed my pants!”

“I know”, she said gently.  “I know you like it.  But it doesn’t look good on you.  It’s time to let it go.”

I wanted to scream and cry and tell her she was wrong! wrong! wrong! wrong!  There is nothing wrong with the skort!  I can put it away anytime I want to.

But in my heart, I knew she was right.

The skort was a crutch.

How can I criticise other people’s unfortunate fashion choices if I am going to continue to wear the skort? 

I would be living a lie.

Thanks to my good friends Mary, Rachel & Megan, I got the courage I needed to put the skorts — all three of them — in the Goodwill bag.

Goodbye dear friend!  *Sniff!*

And thank you!

The skort saw me through tire tosses

Suicides.  And burpees.

70’s day

I’ll never forget the day we danced

Good Thing It’s Not About Looks. . .

Many people work out so they can look fitter, skinnier, prettier.

I have said all along that my goal is NOT about how I look, but how healthy I am.

What is important is good blood, fit joints and strength.

Not looks.

Good thing.  ‘Cause this ain’t pretty.

Dips.  I am balancing on one heel and dipping my fat ass then pulling it back up.  Couldn’t do these in High School.

Another year of AWESOME!


The Leadership Fitness Challenge is where it all started for me.  One of my biggest pet peeves is people who say “This changed my life!”.  So I am not going to say that.

I will say that this enriched my life.  With fitness, yes, but also with friends, challenges and new kinds of fun. 

This time, I am the leader for my College because our president has one of those schedules that makes you tired just to look at it.  He would do it, but I decided that I would be the leader this year because I KNOW I can make all the workouts and I really want to beat Spohn Hospital.  Not that I am competitive or anything.

I was looking at some shots from the very first LEADERSHIP FITNESS CHALLENGE.

This was after I fell off this damn thing but had to get up and pretend it didn’t hurt.  Becasue I was embarassed.

Let’s just say that I’ve come a long way.

Here’s to a new year of awesome!  And to beating Spohn Hospital!

The real reason why I love Victor. . ..

I’ve written about Vic before.

He owns V-Fit — the fitness studio where I work out.  The place where I was first able to do triceps curls and “real” push ups.  The place where I have been able to drop my blood pressure, blood sugar, and bra size.  The place where I have met wonderful friends who encourage me to try, fail and try again.

That’s not why I love Vic.

Vic assigned me to work out with Gabe.  Gentle, kind Gabe who doesn’t shout, doesn’t sneer and doesn’t take excuses.  We call Gabe the “Silent Assassin” because he very quietly kills you with his workouts.  I call him “Silent but Deadly”.  Seriously — he worked my back & shoulders two days ago.  I am still sore.  Did you know your armpits could hurt?  Despite the pain, Gabe has been a wonderful coach, mentor and friend.

That’s not why I love Vic.

Vic is slightly hot looking.  If you like guys with perfectly tone bodies, chiseled bone structure, shiny black hair and the deepest, dreamiest brown eyes since Greg Afuso.  And he’s mostly straight!  (Just kidding. He’s all the way straight.)  (He is pretty Metro though.  I love Metro guys!)  On more than one occasion, friends of mine have seen Victor and come to me drooling.  “HE is your trainer!  OMG I want to work out with you!”  Of course they never show up, the cowards.

That’s not why I love Vic.

It was yesterday that I realized exactly why I love him. 

Yesterday was the 5K I ran for June.  As you may know, I have run one 5K every month since October 2010.  Yesterday I finished my 9th.  Wow.  Nine.  That’s a lot. 

That’s not why I love Vic.

It was one of the most enjoyable 5K’s I’ve run.  It was at sunrise on the beach.  Sounds romantic, right?  Sunrise in June is the only time you can run without getting heat stroke.  But it was still pretty frigging hot.

I haven’t done a lot of running on the beach.  It’s more challenging that running on the road.  For one thing, you have to scoot around to find sand that’s not too soft.  We were kinda zig-zagging all over the place.  I am pretty sure we covered more than 3.1 miles.  Felt like 10. 

I was proud of myself becasue I ran the whole first half no problem.  At the turn around, I was running pretty close to the water.  By then my feet were sore and hot, but I still had more than a mile to go.  A wave came in and soaked my feet. 

I wasn’t happy to have my expensive shoes all wet, but lemme tell ya — that water felt GOOD!

I kept running in & out of the water, until my shoes got so waterlogged it was like running with 15 lb weights on my feet.  Gabe makes me run with 15 lbs weights on my feet, so I know what I am talking about.

It was the beach.  The water felt good.  My shoes were heavy.  I was going slow.

I figured “Fuggit — I’m taking my shoes off”.  So I did.

Running in bare feet in the soft South Texas surf felt WONDERFUL.

That’s not why I love Vic.

I love him because he put on this 5K to help the victims of the Mississippi Floods.

He raised $800.

I realized yesterday that Vic is always doing that.  He set up a scholarship for students to attend Del Mar College. He raised money for Tsunami victims.  He participated in Toys for Tots. He hosted a run for Metro Ministries.  He finds ways to raise money for those in need.

I love Vic because Vic is a giver.

He’s not rich yet.  He’s still building his business.  But he’s not waiting until he has “extra” money to give.  He gives now.    I met Vic when he donated his services for the Mayor’s Fitness Challenge last summer. The retail cost of that challenge was over $2000, just for me. We had 13 people in that challenge. Vic — who was just opening his business — essentially gave us $26,000.00.

So not only did Vic give me a safe and comfortable place to become my best physical self, he gave me and my community thousands of dollars. 

Vic’s business is growing.  He and Gabe are expanding into another location, they are increasing their clientele, and they are bringing new and exciting services to our community.  That’s not an accident.  The great sales and self-actualization guru Zig Ziglar said “You can have everything you want in life as long as you help other people get what they want in life.”  Vic is helping me get what I want in life.  I hope he earns MILLIONS.  Billions. 

In fact — if you live in South Texas, check out V-Fit.  Take a couple of classes.

You will love Vic too.

My very first day working out with Vic
Just one of many successes since I started working out with V-Fit

Here We Go Again . . .

Kirstie is working out hard with DWTS and she’s dropped a few dress sizes. 

Good for you Kirstie!

She says:  “. . . the other thing that’s really more significant to me — I mean, I love the whittling, I like being skinny — I’m really strong and really agile and it gave me a new life.”

How did it give you a new life K?

What exactly is different?  Your hair hasn’t changed.  (You love your highlights, don’t you?)

You’ve been skinny lots of times. 

Star Trek.
Look Who’s Talking
Parker Stevenson
Jenny Craig

You’ve been fat lots of times too:

Fat Actress
Veronica’s Closet
Post Parker Stevenson
Post Jenny Craig

The problem is, when you are fat, you behave as if you are somehow unworthy.  You kvetch to Star and People and whoever will talk to you about how “disgusting” you feel and how “ashamed” you are. 

Kirstie — YOU BANGED PARKER STEVENSON.  Do you know how many women would have LOVED to be in your shoes?  You have a life.  A really, really cool life.  You have a cool life when you are skinny and you have a cool life when you are fat. 

We love you both ways.

Now, in DWTS, you are working out and feeling great.  I am so happy for you.  But this is not the answer to your happy life!  If it is, you will be derailed at your first injury.  Then we have to look at more tabloid covers about how miserable you are.  Your happiness depends on you, not your dress size.

By all means, stay strong.  Stay agile.  But for God’s sake — KEEP YOUR LIFE.  (It’s ok to ditch the highlights tho.)


Scared Grasshopper

Remember when I started working out with Vic and I got kinda cocky and I’m all “I am going to run a 5K every month for a year!” ?

And I have *cough* “run” one 5 K a month since October 2010.

It’s been great!  I’ve had lots of fun, got lots of T-Shirts and have beat my best more than once. 

This month is different.

This month is the 36th Annual Beach to Bay relay marathon.

I heard you gasp.   Don’t worry — It’s a RELAY marathon.  I am not going to run it by myself. 

And that’s what scares me to DEATH. 

I am running with five other people.  Five awesome people.  Our team is called Victor’s Grasshoppers.  Isn’t that a stooopid name?  I couldn’t think of any other names.  I just kinda think of Victor as Master Po — only not blind.  And we are like David Carradine. . .without the auto-erotic asphyxiation.  We’re going to wear vivid green shirts.  And pink skorts.  Well, I am wearing a pink skort.  Don’t know about the other guys.

I’m running the shortest. . .I mean first leg. 

Fear #1: Five other, awesome people are going to have to make up time for me.

It is the largest relay marathon in the US.  NO OTHER PLACE in our country has a marathon relay this big. 

Fear #2: What if I am SO SLOW that my relay partner gives up and goes home?

It’s so big, we have to take a shuttle to the race.

Fear #3: What if I am so slow I miss the shuttle back home?

I am “running” the beach leg. 

Fear #4:  What if I am so slow that the Sexy Seniors running club kicks sand in my face as they pass me?

The beach leg is short, but it’s on sand.  So it’s challenging.

Fear #5: What if I am SO SLOW that the race is over by the time I pass the baton?

This Saturday, if you see a sweaty, sandy, slow, scared runner wearing a green T-Shirt and a pink skort — that will be me.

Nine (9) Months

I have been working out since July 10, 2010. 

That’s nine (9) months of Vic.  Nine (9) months of sweating.  Grunting.  Swearing.  Nine (9) months of making a fool out of myself and then running to my keyboard so I could tell you about it.

Nine (9) months ago, I couldn’t have carried  my 34 lb child almost a mile.  Saturday, I did just that — at the Naval Air Station Corpus Christi Airshow. 

Nine (9) months ago, I couldn’t buy a sports bra anywhere but the plus size section of Lane Bryant.  Yesterday I bought an XL off the rack at Kohl’s.  (Still can’t buy belts, but bras?  Oh yeah.  My girls are shrinking)

Nine (9) months ago, an afternoon of pruning trees would render me useless for three days.  Sunday, I didn’t even break a sweat.

Nine (9) months ago I didn’t know Vic.  Or Gabe.  Or Ricky (sigh).  Or Mary L or Laurie L or the Other Laurie or Maria or Dana or Dee-Ann or Jesse or Liz or Lee or Rene or Tim or any of the awesome people that are now my V-Fit friends.  That’s the best part.

I’m still fat.  I’m just not as fat as I was nine (9) months ago.  And I am a whole lot fitter.

Nine (9) months.