When I Grow Up…

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You can always tell how I feel in the AM based on my level of make up, whether my hair is done just right, or even the shoes that I wear. Today was one of those days… very little make up, jeans and tennies, and my hair was (at best) brushed. Just was not into Tuesday – and no amount of coffee was going to change that.
Then it happened. My lunch with Jenn.
We opted for the Garden Table since they have vegan meals there. I was super happy about that because the atmosphere there is always open and easy.
As we started talking about the current events in our lives, our conversation took a serious turn. I would almost call it the “What I want to be when I grow up” conversation. We discussed the whys and what fors of our lives and where and how we wanted to get there…. She shared with me the arguments she has with herself and I told her about mine. With ZERO sarcasm, I can say it really was a wonderful time.

Heart to heart
Now that I am back at work (shhh… don’t tell that I typing this and not working, but I HAD to get this pen to paper so to speak), I have had a chance to breath it all in.
This journey of #becomingabetterme has basically been my WHY. When I started the healthy living, exercise, and self-discovery path, I knew I wanted to share with others the good, the bad, and the ugly of what it takes to be a better Heather, but I wanted to show the world that if I could do it, anyone could. How is that a WHY, you might ask – well to me its simple… I want to be a positive light in someone else’s life. I want to show the world that it is possible to achieve your goals – even if it takes a life time, and I want to show the world that this ol’ dog learned some tricks, and will continue to do so!
It is not every day that you get to have a heart to heart with a dear friend, and even more that you don’t get to have a conversation that makes you think seriously about who you are to the core.


I know that I am not perfect, I know that I never will be – but I am happy with myself. I still have a ways go, but I am #becomingabetterme and I am learning a little more each day about the Heather I want to be.
Thank you Jenn for reminding me to look at the reasons in life, and I look forward to seeing your perspective, as we continue on this journey of life and #becomingabetterme(s).

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End of 2017 – So, I am a Procrastinator

23167755_10214107506502267_2724069446111979931_nIf I had to rank 2017 on my “Top years of my life” I would say it was not in the Top 10… Not the Top 20 even. 2017 was really a rough year for me. Especially on the heels of 2016, which happened to be freaking amazing. Do not get me wrong, there were good times, I am not saying it was all bad, but it was very challenging and there were several changes.

You already know about the cruise (highlight), Kokomo experience (low), job change (highlight and scary experience), but you dont know about is the way the year ended… including how I ended the Log Blog – Making the Miles Count. The last post was in September, so Oct – Dec are a mystery to you…. did I make it to my 500 Miles in 2017?! Short answer: YES I DID!

October was a very “walkie” month for me as I spent a lot of time with vendors walking my properties and getting quotes, so I got in roughly 65 miles that month. Then November we decided we were going to start looking for a bigger house so we started heavy duty packing, purging, and cleaning – racked up 80 miles that month. (I believe most of those steps were to and from the trash can as I purged WAY more than my hubs expected!) Then December – another crazy month! With the Christmas season we had a tree to fill so there was a lot of mall walking, and still more cleaning, and then once our house was on the market – we had to find something to do during showings, so those hours we window shopped a lot.  Grand total of miles for Dec was 68 miles.

So for my Log Blog – I succeed. I am proud of that.

What I am not proud of is how in all of the chaos and I let ME get away from me. The person who goes to the gym to release the stress, the person who take a challenge head on (even if I talk about how I dont want to do it and am scared, I still move forward), and the me who learned what it felt like to healthy and happy at the same time and not allow myself to eat my feelings… that girl got lost in 2017.

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I guess as I sit here and reflect on what all happened at the end of 2017, I have to give myself a bit of a truth biscuit to chew on… maybe a glass of water so I dont choke on the crumbs, because although I did fall back a few steps (and gained back a few more lbs than I wanted to), I did make it HERE. To the new house, still at (and loving) the new job, with new adventures in front of me. Not only that, but I am back at the gym at least 2 times a week. I am seriously thinking about finding a new Mr T… or maybe this time I will go with a Mrs T? A trainer with a different perspective on exercise, someone to learn more from – or even to build on what my 1st Mr T taught me.  Who knows, I am unpredictable after all 🙂

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I guess to sum up my 2017 – not my finest year… but hey, just like on the spartan course, there are hills and there are valleys… I consider 2017 a hill… a muddy, slopped, rocky, and never ending hill… I just need to look at 2018 as the slide down the other side and continue on this journey of #becomingabetterme and make this year what I want of it!

 

Truth Seekers…

I know, I know I have not posted in awhile… I am sorry. I have about 3 other posts waiting for me to finish. Including my Hello November and Hello December as well as a year end recap and an in between about a really good friend of mine. I promise, I will get them out really soon… but right now I want to talk about Truth Seekers.

Before I start this post, I feel it is important to mention I do not think I am a fitness expert or a dietitian extraordinaire, but what I can say is I am someone who has been there. Someone who has asked the questions and learned from doing. That is why I feel the need to share my experiences for those who might currently be in the shoes I wore at the beginning of this journey.

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Most recently I got an email about how a friend felt like they “failed” at CrossFit. First, my opinion is if you can handle 5 mins of CrossFit you are SOOO not a failure! You might be crazy, but a failure – you are not!

My words to my friend were simple:

Who cares if you didnt finish the full work out? If the answer is anyone but YOU then your answer is wrong. You are not in competition with anyone but yourself, therefore no other opinion should matter.

When you do CrossFit, do you do more each time you go? If the answer is YES, then you know in your heart you are on the right path.

I went on to say: If you dont see improvement, then start a journal. If this week’s CrossFit routine is 100 box jumps and 200 jumping jacks and 100 burpees (etc with the crazy work out routine) and this time you did 10 box jumps and 20 jumping jacks and 1 burpee then great. Next week when you do 15 box jumps, 40 jumping jacks and 2 burpees… well, you improved! You just bested your best.. and next week you will best your best’s best! 🙂

My friend was happy with that answer… because it was the truth and they needed to hear that.

When I started the journey of#becomingabetterme I was a truth seeker. I thought at first, I was looking for approval or acknowledgement of my small accomplishment, and maybe to start I was, but ultimately I wanted someone to point out that I was really moving forward… and this is me telling you, friend, you are moving forward. You are doing great. Just keep on moving and when it is your turn to help another Truth Seeker, just remember your journey and how you felt in this moment.

Friends Make Adventures Even Better

 

Once in awhile I will go through my Facebook pictures and look at everything I have done over the course of the last few years and as I did that tonight it dawned on me that I have one hellova support group and adventure team!

It amazes me how different of a person I am now. Sure, I went on vacations with my family, or did some sporting events with the kids, or even an occasional meal with a friend, but I wasn’t a social butterfly. **I think I have made mention to this in a past blog.

Anywho, over the past couple of years I have lived by the motto “nothing cool happens within your comfort zone” and I have truly embraced that.

To be fair, some of my adventures have been non-physical, but they are adventures none the less. When you spend an evening revealing your inner most fears, or sharing stories of your past that still haunt you and bring tears to your eyes – that is still personal growth… and what is personal growth if not an adventure into a new and better you???

Since hanging with these gals I have gone to a Masquerade Ball for Halloween, gone swimming at the drop of a hat, spent a weekend in Florida just because,  been front row at a Joan Jett concert, bunked up for a week long work trip, walked two miles in a Wonder Woman costume, hiked Turkey Run, hiked Plainfield parks, had numerous laughs, numerous meals, and numerous heart to hearts.

These girls brought me out of the comfort zone in their own little way, and I hope some day I can help them the way they have helped me. I have seen several times in my life where females look down, and put down their fellow women. What is the point? What is actually gained by that? The answer is simple – NOTHING.  These ladies need to be celebrated, so that is what I am doing.  This blog is about the good, the bad, and the ugly of #becomingabetterme and maybe sometimes I don’t praise those around me enough… especially when they are the ones who inspire me to do more, and continue on this journey. So here’s to you – Angel, Kait, Jennifer, Jami, and MiMi (ok, Mindi) – Cheers! Love you all, and look forward to so many many more adventures!

I Don’t Know!

FullSizeR (3)Have I mentioned my job change lately?  Yeah, I believe I have… and with all new jobs, there is always a learning curve, but tonight was WAAYYY different.

Let me start by saying, I have been in housing for 10 years, and in those 10 years have just constantly added to my knowledge base.

Tax Credit, got it. HOME, got it. AHP, got it. Section 8, got it. CoC, got it. HUDVash, got it. I have just taken each section and built on it.  Never at any point did I ever feel like I was completely learning something new. Just built further on what I already knew.

Now that I am in a totally different arena within the housing industry I am reminded what it is like to not be 100% aware of what I am doing, and this is territory I am not used to!

I do not mean to sound conceited, I promise! I just remember rules and am good with detail, and as I have said since I found myself in housing, “Housing is either in your blood or its not… and it is in mine!”

Tonight had me way out of my comfort zone. I was seriously at a loss. This branch of housing has a lot to do with legal jargon and understanding of bylaws, covenants, and voting quorums. Every question for the first 20 mins, and then every 5 mins for the rest of the 2 hour meeting was about the legal side of things.

I had to step back, recognize my shortcoming, and ask for help… and thank goodness I had something with me that could handle what was being thrown at us.

As I have spent several of those 10 years training and assisting others, I have received compliments like, “I hope I know as much about housing as you do at some point.” Or, “Ask Heather-pedia, she knows housing!” and I really never thought anything of it, until I looked at my coworker tonight and thought, “I cant wait until I get to that point.”

I know this isn’t my traditional style post, but I do kind of have a moral to this story… I felt so out of my element, but it is ok to not know. It is ok to ask for help. It is ok to have a new knowledge goal – just like a physical goal. It is just one step in #becomingabetterme, and I will continue to exercise my brain and one day I will reach that goal too!

Hello May, June, July, and August – Making the Miles Count MORE! (Log Blog)

I am not going to sit here and bore you with the details of why I have gone off the grid for the last few months, but I will say I think I am back.

I can say that with the craziness of the old job (yes, I said old job – and I will get into that here shortly), and starting at a new place (again I will go into that too), I have not really logged every mile like I was. I can say with 100% certainty that I made my goal! I promise.

Here are the basic breakdowns and why I know I did it:

MAY – I was still in Kokomo. Yes, Kokomo. Like living away from home to get the community up there leased. I was walking the building at least 3 times a day and there were three flights, two wings, and 64 apartments… so at the end of the day (which was sometimes not over until 10pm), I would look at my Garmin and see 3+ miles. This was my life Monday – Friday and then home on the weekend. So even if I did NOTHING on the weekend I was still looking at minimum of 15 miles a work week… and we all know I don’t do NOTHING. Even going to Walmart requires walking so “no steps on the weekend” was an impossibility. Lets just call it basic math… 3miles/day times 5days/week times 4weeks/month (3x5x4) equals 60 miles. See GOAL!

JUNE – June was a busy month. Not only was I still kind of in Kokomo, but my daughter graduated high school, we moved our main office, my birth month, my daughter’s open house, and I know I am missing something… but I can get my point across with this. As I stated, I was still in Kokomo training the woman who would be the manager there, not only giving her the tours, but still showing and renting apartments there. I will say that I didn’t walk as much once I started  training, but I can say, there were 2 miles a days every day I was there. I had to squeeze in Kats grad and the open house… the shopping for that put me at a total of 6 miles over the two shopping days. Then coming back to Indy and trying to get things packed and ready for the move, I had a few days in there I racked up 5 miles. Crazy I know, but true. As a matter of fact I worked on my birthday to get the main move done and between that Friday and Saturday I had 9 miles in. Now I know I am throwing small numbers at you, but those numbers add up. So for simple math sake, lets say I only did 2 miles every day… 2miles per day times 30 days in June equals another 60 miles. GOAL AGAIN.

JULY – I am not going to pretend I have an specific dates that give me more miles than the norm, but I did manage to stop working 60-75 hours a week and get back to a more regular schedule and get in some gym time. As I put in my notice for the 28th o f July as my last day with Partners, I did get to do a little more than just work and sleep, so I am just going to say 1.75 miles a day for 31 days = 54.25 miles…  I added an extra .25 miles per day because the new office put the bathroom WAAAY at the other end of the hall so there was a lot of walking after drinking my 2 cups of coffee and my big bottles of water everyday. So I am still claiming  goal.

So here we are in August… Aug 1 was the start of my new job. This I can do a little more mathing to get to my numbers (I know the month isn’t over, but I can still average it all out in the end. To start I didn’t get a parking pass on day one… or even day 10 for that matter, so by day three I was looking to see exactly how far from the lot I had to park in to the office door it really was…. over .41 miles. yeah… so walked from my car to the office and then back  – A MINIMUM of .82 miles a day. Yeah, damn near a mile a day just to and from the office! Then on day 14 I got my pass. It knocked down my miles from .41 to .28… so still a half mile from car to door. Then you add in GenCon (glorious glorious GenCon) HOLY COW! In 3.5 days of this gaming extravaganza we racked up more than 18 miles! So, math – 18 plus (gonna say 2 miles per day – minus the GenCon days) two miles times 31 days minus 3.5 days = 2×27.5+18 = 73 miles for the month. GOAL ACHEIVED.

As I head into another month and continue on the journey of  #becomingabetterme and continuing to learn more about housing – just in a different form, I know I am on the right path and September will prove to be another successful month. Just wait and see faithful readers. I got this.

When Life Gives You Lemons… or However That Goes

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I do not know exactly how this is going to turn out because honestly, I have so many things swimming in my head that I do not know where to begin.

After stepping off of the boat from the cruise I found out that everything at work had gone HAYWIRE. I am not going to go into any details, but trust me, it was not good.

When you are the Director of Property Operations, and a property isn’t operating, its up to you to deal with it… whether I liked it or not, it was the only option, I was going to be going to Kokomo (an hour and a half away from my house) to handle the problem.

I wont bore you with compliance details or info on what Low Income Housing Tax Credit is, but since that is the core of my job, I had to take care of it because losing money at a nonprofit is not an option.

Going into the property knowing I had less than 20 days to get an specific number of residents was a heavy load to carry. I knew that I would be able to get the applications –  it was just the processing and the moving in that I was concerned about. Sure 20 days seems like a long time, but when you only have nine days to sign the leases, the 20 is cut down rather quickly. Truly, sincerely, legitimately scared I was not going to be able to make it happen. I do not think I have ever been so stressed in my life and being away from home, in a strange town just added to it.IMG_3327

Since my blog always has something about gym therapy or working out the stress with exercise, I feel like I should add that in as well. Working from 8am until 10pm some days left little time to sweat out my emotions, until I realized how many stairs there were in the building. At the end of a rough day (again sometimes at 10pm) I would put on my tennies and just walk the stairs. Over the course of 13 business days I was at the property I would get in over 3 miles a day. I wish my Garmin counted the actual flights of stairs, rather than just plan steps taken, because I know I went up and down those things at least 50 times! It was not enough to work out the stress, but it did take the edge off.

Going back to the problem I was facing: how was I going to accomplish this goal???? What the EPH was I going to do?!?!

The answer turned out to be – JUST DO IT! More than that, do IT – and then some. FullSizeR

Now, instead of being behind and worrying about whether we could make it all happen, I am ahead of the game. Still have a long way to go, still have to be away from my family, but trying to do right by the people we serve, make a difference in the community, and support my organization.

Is it hard, hell yes its hard! Have I cried, hell yes I have! Will I break down again? I am sure of it… but I am not a quitter and failure is not an option.

Feeling Like A Monday

StressI have been debating on writing this one for awhile now, but I promised I would be honest about the good, bad, and the ugly of this journey, and for the last few months I have been in the middle of the ugly.

When I wrote a couple of months ago, I mentioned my job morphing and it continued to do so… I am now titled: Director of Property Operations… and I love it. My struggle, however is the stress… I have been putting in roughly 60 hours a week and still being so far behind I can’t see the light at the end of the tunnel.

This is when I take a minute, step back and regroup. You know that one way I do this is via the gym, but I also use music to get me through.

Yesterday on my way home from work I was playing vehicle karaoke – don’t judge me – and listening to my husband (Jon Bon Jovi) and this song came on…

I know that it is just a song, but sometimes singing at the top of my lungs and remembering that I don’t have to keep it together all of the time…. and right now I do not. I am so far from together it isn’t even funny. So until I get myself back on track this is what I am going with the idea that Someday I will be Saturday night.

Happy Blogiversary

I started this blog one year ago today and I am so proud of myself and what I have accomplished!

Although 2016 was not completely as I had hoped, I have been putting in some thought as to what I wanted to get out of 2017 and I have a list.

First:  I decided I that I am going to do the 50 miles a month challenge. That is 600 miles in a year! With that, I can say “I will walk 500 miles…” Hehe, sorry, I love that song.  Anyway, to do this, it will require me to log my daily steps/miles – which I plan to do in a Log Blog  – stay tuned!

Second: I will sign up and do some random 5ks with my teammates and of course my bestie – Angel again. 2016 had me doing a few virtual runs, but I really need to be out there with the group making this happen. Accountability and all of that.

Third: September is the Nashville Spartan Sprint, and I going to make this happen! Angel, Chris, and Tim are with me… and I hope to meet a few out of town Spartans as well! (Joe, Scott, Ashley – if you are reading this, I am so stoked! Hanging with you guys will make being a Spartan even more real!)

Finally: To continue to be work through my hashtag … I want to be a better me, all of the way around. Lots of things changed over the last year and I know it has tested my patience and even my strength, but I got this… moving forward I will continue #becomingabetterme13173596_10208974174892185_3840443906967224278_o

 

 

 

I Can’t Unsee That

A good friend and I were having a nice conversation today. We talk daily, so we are always sharing things we have seen. Somewhere in our conversation he pops off with a “Hey, did you see the article about the Playboy Playmate body shaming a woman at the gym?”  I had not seen or heard about it, so he sent me the link. Before I read it, I was a little annoyed, thinking that someone was getting shamed AT THE GYM, stupid – but then, I read the article. I WAS LIVID!

(To start I will say it was posted on TMZ, so feel free to give it a read for yourself)

The long and short of the story is this Playmate, Dani Mathers, is at the gym, in the “locker room” and took a picture of a naked gym goer taking a shower and body shaming her on social media. Her Mean Girl antics have got her into some seriously hot water (and I personally vote for jail time), but the kicker is her public apology that basically said, “I am not sorry I am a b*tch and meant what I said, I am sorry I got caught saying it out loud!”

After talking telling my friend I read the article, and finished practicing my swear words, we changed the tone of the chatter. We talked about the big what if…

What if that were me??  I have been going to the gym for about two(ish) years now, and am past the initial ‘everyone is watching me’ feeling that I had at the beginning of my visits… but what if I wasn’t… what if someone actually shamed me in my first visit… WHERE WOULD I BE??

The answer to that is sadly simple, I would be exactly where I was two plus years ago, unhappy, overweight, and unhealthy. Those thoughts alone make me tear up. More than that, I would not be where I am. I know that sounds like a “duh” statement, but there is so much involved in that. I would not have met my new friends (and family) on my Cornfed team. I would not have had enough self confidence to go on adventures without a responsible adult to be my security blanket. I would never had the belief in myself to finish – not one, but tw0 – Spartan races. I would not have been able to better myself enough to become a trusted and respected coworker to my team. Above and beyond all of these things, I would not have found myself. Yes, I found me. I am now the person I knew I could be… or at least am pointed in the direction of becoming that better person I am striving to be.

It scares me to think I would lose my sanctuary. I use the gym as my outlet for daily stress, I go and walk my negative thoughts away, I lift away the ugliness that I see going on in the world, and come out stronger and lighter. I need that.

What Dani Mathers did to that poor woman is the lowest of low, and I only hope that it does not turn her off from #becomingabetterher … and take away whatever it is that the gym does for her. I hope that she has the inner strength to give Dani the middle finger and go right back to doing her thang, and doing it her way!

When I thought about writing this post I was so mad, I was worried that I would just use this as a rant, and I finish up (I am still mad, don’t think for a second I am not) it shows me how lucky I am to go to a gym where everyone is friendly. Thank you for being awesome, AnyTime.

Keep it classy, Dani Mathers… hope orange is your new black!