#RoadTo27 Day 3 – Be You.

I guess this is kinda turning into a “things I’ve learned” series…Lord knows I’ve sure as hell learned a LOT over the last year.

This morning I woke up reluctantly after a rough nights sleep knowing I had to get ready to go to a second interview. You could say I was less than excited. Not because I don’t want the job, I actually really love the company and hope I land it, but because I wasn’t in the mood to get “girled up” and impress anyone today.

Then it hit me…I don’t have to.

I took the time for my first interview to make sure my hair was perfect, my makeup was flawless, my jeans were starched and pressed and my shirt was really nice. I mean, it’s important to present yourself well, right?

Today, however, I took a different approach. Knowing the available position had been narrowed down to myself and one other lady, I had an “all or nothing” attitude. If they don’t like me for plain ole me, they don’t want to hire me…because I’m not that starched jeans and red lip girl all the time. If my personality, attributes and experience don’t get me the job, but red lips will, well…I don’t want it anyway.

I took about 15 minutes to enjoy getting ready the way I would for any normal date night or something to that effect. Fixed my hair so it didn’t look so much like a disheveled hay bale, brightened my eyes a bit and made my eyelashes visible…nothing spectacular. I threw on the only pair of “non-work” jeans I had, a tank..and a neon pink and black button up shirt.

I laughed to myself when I looked in the mirror; I felt just exactly like me. That’s a good feeling. With my confidence high I strolled to the interview.

3

I was early, as usual. This gave me a few minutes to visit with one of the fellas before the other showed up. It was in this small talk that I learned something about myself…

It wasn’t the pressed jeans and put together look that got me that second interview..it was my handshake.

When he said to me “So, you used to work on a ranch? That tells me a lot about your work ethic.” …it made me smile. I take a lot of pride in those years of loping ponies and long hours with the greatest West Texas cowboy I know, and I learned a lot.

“Yes sir.” I said..and I noticed an ornery looking grin about him.

Then he said, “You know what really impressed me about you?” …puzzled, I shook my head, and that’s when he said “Your handshake.”

Now I was the one with the ornery grin! When someone compliments something that is relevant to my character, I can’t usually contain myself. Of course I gave him a thank you, but he went on to say “It’s not often you get a handshake like that, it’s respectable.”

I was seriously speechless.

The second fella showed up and we proceeded to visit about what they’d require, my ability to do those things not originally discussed, etc….near the end of our chat a man walked into the office. He seemed important, sure enough …it was their CPA. I stood and shook his hand when they introduced us. Mr.CPA looked down at the fellas doing my interview like “Whoa, really?” …I just smiled as I sat back down.

Driving home I reflected on this. I had never thought about those little things. Those little signs of respect and sincerity that set me apart…the confidence I exude when introducing myself that makes me memorable. I know that I’m silly and quirky and funny and a bit odd, but I now know that those aren’t the qualities that stand out.

It’s my genuine being…it’s ME, as an individual. It’s my manners, it’s the way I was raised…it’s the fact that I’m different. It’s the fact that I respect people as individuals.

I’m pretty proud of that.

So, even if I don’t land this job…I know that in the last year of soul searching I’ve done something right. I’ve stayed true to my most genuine self. The woman who has never met a stranger, who respects everyone and who would do just about anything to put a smile on a face.

4

Seriously, anything.

Stay true to who you are. Be YOU.

xoxo

OkieGirl

 

 

#RoadTo27 Day 2 – Change

Yesterday was day one of the newest DragonFit bootcamp round. I decided I was gong to fully commit this round, no half assing. I posted in our sisterhood group that I was going to do the “Mile For Time” challenge mentioned in our emails, and that I was going to crush my fastest mile. When I woke up this morning I had one thing on my mind – beating that time. I went to sleep thinking about it, I woke up thinking about it…I was going to do it.

I stretched and reached for my phone to check the time and the first thing I saw was a text from a girlfriend that said;

“Why am I afraid of change?!?!”

I sat there, phone in hand, trying to think of just what to tell her…

Because it’s scary! That’s why!!

What if you fail? What if you can’t do it? What if you lose friends? What if people mock you? What if…

…what if you succeed?

Over the last year I’ve made more changes than I can actually really wrap my head around. Small things like shaving off half my hair…and huge things like leaving my toxic marriage.

They were all scary, and they all caused exponential self growth. I’ve grown accustom to change, and I really like it – but it’s still very scary. I like it because I always grow and learn about myself, even if the change wasn’t necessarily “good”.

So, here’s my advice on change.

  • Embrace it, embrace the HELL out of it. It’s gonna be scary, but it’s going to be worth it.
  • Figure out what part of it is actually scaring you – for me, it’s often the fear of success.
  • Understand that every time you walk through a new door you’re going to lose people. Also understand that is perfectly okay. Most people we meet are just for certain phases of our lives, the ones who are meant to follow through each door will remain.
  • If there is someone who doesn’t support your change, they are NOT your tribe and you do not need them.
  • Seek positive energy and surround yourself with people who have similar goals and ambitions. It wasn’t until I did this that I really started to succeed.
  • Don’t worry about the thoughts of others. This is particularly true for lifestyle changes. When I started lifting like crazy and packing on muscle, I lost a lot of “friends” …that was my choice. No one get’s to decide what my body should look like but me!
  • LAUGH. When you hit a speed bump or completely screw up, laugh about it. Realize you’re human, find the light and just move forward.
  • Don’t be afraid to ask for help.Ever.
  • Find some consistency. Even if it doesn’t seem consistent, as long as you’re pushing towards your goals…you’re going to make the change permanent.
  • Don’t be afraid of failure. Failure is just in your head, there really are no failures…only lessons. Find the lesson and push forward. Readjust if you must, but keep moving towards the goal.
  • Get out of your own head. Don’t overthink it, just do it.

I think my last bit of advice on making change is this…

ALWAYS believe in yourself…and when you don’t, do it anyway.

I didn’t believe in myself when I stepped foot out to go on that run this morning. I knew there was NO way I was going to beat that time of 13:31…but I went out, and tried my damndest anyway.

I crushed it, by the way…by over 2 minutes.

You don’t always have to believe in yourself to create change, you just have to fight through the fear.

After all, on the other side of fear lies freedom.

14

xoxo

OkieGirl

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Just Start.

How To Start Your Health Journey

  1. MORE WATER – At least 3 liters a day, aim for a gallon
  2. CUT OUT THE POP – no soda, no sugary drinks, no Gatorade, no liquid CRAP.
  3. FORGET THE DIET – Get the idea of “going on a diet” out of your head and focus on creating a sustainable way of eating for life – not just for now.
  4. NO MORE “FAST & PROCESSED” – Skip the fast food and anything in a box. Keep to the outside aisles of your grocery store and as close to whole, real and natural foods as possible. 5 ingredients or less is a good rule of thumb.
  5. DON’T OVER COMPLICATE – Seriously, it’s not that hard. Food is fuel, use it as such. Eat when you’re hungry and stop when you’re full.
  6. LEARN WHEN YOU’RE FULL – Don’t drink with your meal. Before is fine, but stop when you start eating. When you get thirsty (more thirsty than hungry, that is) get a drink and STOP eating. This will retrain your brain to understand the difference in thirst and hunger.
  7. FORGET WHAT YOU “KNOW” – If you wake up in the morning, every single morning, and are NEVER hungry…don’t feel like you have to eat because “breakfast is the most important meal of the day” …breakfast has no time – it’s simply when you “break your fast”. If you’re not hungry until 10am or even 1pm …eat then. Your body is efficient and it’s telling you what it needs – LISTEN!
  8. LISTEN TO YOUR BODY – If you get tired after eating bread, stop. If you feel amazing after eating bacon, eat more. We all use fat and carbohydrates differently as fuel – some burn carbs better and some burn fat. Get in tune and figure out what your body likes.
  9. CARBS AREN’T THE DEVIL – Believe it or not, you need carbs to function. Choose them wisely and stop stressing, they aren’t going to kill you.
  10. REMOVE THE EMOTION – There should be no emotion attached to eating. It is not for celebrating, it is not a reward, it is simply fuel for your body. FOOD IS FUEL. Repeat that until you understand it. FOOD.IS.FUEL…nothing else.
  11. NO GUILT – NEVER feel guilty about eating something. If you want it, eat it! Enjoy it and move on. Don’t beat yourself up or even refer to those special goody meals as cheats – remember, food is just fuel…as long as you’re using race fuel about 80% of the time, that 20% of the time you use 87 octane pump gas isn’t going to hurt you. ENJOY your life.

The first step is simply trying. You will have hiccups, you will get confused and overwhelmed and begin to overthink…and when you do, go back to step 1 and KEEP trying until you find that sweet spot.

xoxo

OkieGirl

d4360c863b2dcd0c09ba167279bf3753

Hunt The Switch.

Of all the struggles that come with self discovery and the journey to health and self love the hardest for me has been SEEING the changes on the outside.

I can feel the internal changes, point out the lifestyle changes, SHOW you the physical changes…but until just recently when I would look in the mirror I would see the same girl that I was a year ago; and I’m just not her anymore.

I know that I have lost 5 jean sizes, I KNOW that my measurements are consistently decreasing, I know that I am adding muscle in all the places that I want it to be…but I couldn’t see it.

No matter HOW hard I tried, no matter how many progress photos I compared…looking in the mirror would disappoint me EVERY single time.

There was a defining moment shortly after I had hit my 35″ waist goal that I remember very vividly…and I went home that night and just saw myself differently.

I don’t know what flipped the switch, and I wish I could figure it out…because finally seeing yourself the way the world sees you is really liberating. Being able to be proud and KNOW how you look – its incredible. Finally seeing on the outside what I feel on the inside is so new, and so exciting…and a little bit scary too.

Why scary? Because I know I will go through this struggle time and time again…I will have to hunt for that vision over and over with every step of the journey. BUT – that’s okay, because now that my mind is in the place it needs to be, I think I can overcome any obstacle that steps in my way.

Once you change your mindset things begin to come easier. Once you learn to LOVE yourself no matter what and don’t let anything define you…it all beings to make sense.

Until then, embrace the chaos and imperfections and hunt for the thing that flips your switch. Don’t base your vision of yourself off of that of another…find the true you and ROCK that shit.

xoxo

OkieGirl

 

 

Live Fit & Healthy.

As I was sitting on my bed last night writing down some goals and working on a new 21 day transformation program I’ll be doing…a lot of things occurred to me.

  • I’m sure not where I thought I’d be when I turned 26.
    • In some ways I’m proud of that, in others I’ve let myself down.
  • Making changes isn’t easy, but even small changes lead to big results with enough time.
  • I can’t do this on my own.
  • My life depends on this change.

Now that I’ve figured that out, I should be good to go right?

Right…that’s what I’ve said 1,000 times. I’ve “started” to get fit and healthy 1,000 times…I don’t even think I’m exaggerating!

But, this time I did one thing different.

I asked for help, for someone to join me…not just anyone though; my rock, my best friend, my everyday hero, my love, my biggest supporter…my husband.

You see, he’s never let me fail when I asked him for help.

He’s always pushed and supported me in ANY endeavor I’ve ever attempted (and believe me, there have been a LOT of them)….he has stood right beside me through every trial, every success and every failure!

I decided a few days before my 26th birthday that I wanted this year to be different. I don’t want to turn 27 next October, 11th and think…damn, I let another year get away! I want to look back and think “Look at all the incredible things we did this year!” I want to get healthy, the healthiest I have ever been…and I want to inspire others to do the same. I want to take adventures, and risks, and do things that scare me. I want to spend as much time as I can in nature, and learning new things. I want to hunt, and fish, and play in the mud any chance I get…and I want to take every tiny step I can to get a little bit closer to my ultimate goal.

I think as young people we need to realize that our health must come first. Our bodies deserve to run at peak levels. They deserve to be fueled with preservative and hormone free foods that actually benefit our well-being.

You don’t put fake gas in your car when you want it to run it’s best, now do you? So why would you put fake food in your body and expect premium results?

I think we over complicate things. We all want that “quick fix” …but no one really gives a damn about their health. Sit back and think about all the SHIT you’re putting into your body before you use another quick fix product…and then ask yourself why you’re overweight and unhealthy.

You do realize it’s YOUR fault, right? You are the one responsible for your body and taking care of it. The time to start giving a damn is now. Clean up your diet, cut out gluten and processed JUNK, stop drinking chemical concoctions (all of these lead to inflammation in the gut and body – by the way), eat single ingredient foods…get an accountability partner …and MOVE YOUR ASS!! I guarantee you things will begin to change.

That’s not just a note to you, it’s a note to me as well.

I plan on blogging throughout this venture…to share with you our ups and downs, and our progress in health, fitness and life.

I’ll try and share my favorite recipes and things that make it all easier (and cheaper) for us to live fit & healthy…after all, this is a lifestyle change not a quick fix.

Stay motivated, my friends…

xoxo

OkieGirl

If All Else Fails, Go Squat.

Today started out okay…I was a little tired but other than that felt pretty good. I got to work and everything was gravy, and out of nowhere I just had a breakdown. I’m talking like body shaking, heart racing, fingers tingling fighting back tears type breakdown. I have never felt so out of control…and it was scary.

I struggled through my work and left at noon. I knew I had to do something to get through this overbearing anxiety, so I headed to my squat rack. I just kept squatting and adding weight, over and over and over. I added more weight than I have ever squatted before (double what I have ever done, actually)…afterwards I felt SO good. I was beaming with pride because I had squatted 140 pounds 13 times after probably 100 (or more) lower weight squats. I was sweaty, exhausted and relieved. I had won. 

I came inside, fixed a good lunch and relaxed. I was scrolling through Instagram looking through my favorite fitness pages when I INSTANTLY started picking apart my body in my head. My accomplishments had disappeared and I forgot about how crazy awesome my legs looked after my squat sesh. 

What. The. Hell. 

At what point in my life did I become not good enough? At what point did I lose pride in who I am and my body? It was only today that I realized…I AM one of those fit girls. I am SO strong…not because I have always worked out, but because I have always worked. The beginning of my fitness journey is some peoples middle. I am lifting more at the VERY beginning than some people ever will. I’m not trying to brag, but am just trying to make a point.

We must not compare ourselves to others!!!

You are your own person, and you must stay true to that. Sure, you should find people to look up to and get inspired by…but choose people who are also beautiful on the inside. Choose someone who inspires you to be a better PERSON, not just have a better body. Find women who are confident for the right reasons, and ones who put of a vibe that makes you feel good. 

I know it’s hard not to feel like you’re good enough – I PROMISE , I do! BUT, you are! You are perfect, amazing and uniquely you.

Stay true, do you and be you – unapologetically! 

…and if all else fails, squat it out! 

XoXo

OkieGirl 
Following are some of my favorite Instagram accounts of truly beautiful and inspirational women, feel free to share those who inspire you! 

  • @breilly728
  • @dreamerdragon
  • @iamdragonfit 
  • @danalinnbailey
  • @yogibuffcakes 
  • @jojo_green7
  • @kberezowski
  • @sunshinesjourney
  • @healthyhooper 
  • @evanchilds 
  • @emonfre 

I am sure there are some I’m forgetting! 

Finding The Light.

Among all the hate and history lessons floating around the internet – I thought I would share a story of pain, struggle and hope.

**If you are a close friend or our family – please don’t be offended that I didn’t call and tell you. Please don’t take it personally that you didn’t know before I shared it here. I’m not usually one to share something so personal to begin with – but feel like I should say what countless others are afraid to. I love you all and hope you understand that you’re very important to me…but sometimes I just have to write it out.**

Almost 7 years ago standing around a bon fire I met the love of my life. It was one of those almost instant things…those things you just know. From that night on we didn’t spend much time apart. I think it wasn’t until we had been together for almost 6 months and moved into a house of our own that I said, “You know – you never ACTUALLY asked me out!”  So then, of course – he did!

Sometime into our relationship we had the “kids” talk, because…that’s just something you need to do if you plan on spending FOREVER with someone. He already has two wonderful boys, and I have never really had that “burning desire” to reproduce – so we shared some common ground on not really wanting one of our own. For anyone who knows me – this is to no surprise, I’m just not the momma type… and I personally think that’s okay.

WELL – flash forward like 5 years after that conversation to the day I had to tell my husband that I was late…and, understandably he was confused because I’m never late for anything! I was really late…and I already knew what the little urine covered stick was going to tell me.

PREGNANT

Big bold terrifying letters! I cried, he looked at me like I was crazy, I laughed because I was terrified – still looking at me like I was crazy….then we sat in silence on the couch.

The next day was better…I downloaded an ap on my phone, did all the weird Chinese gender calendar things, found some really good vitamins and really started taking care of my body. In the few short weeks I got to experience being pregnant a lot of things happened.

I found an entirely new love for my husband.

I found an entirely new love for myself and my health.

I found my vulnerable side, and touched base with my strong side.

And I got REALLY in tune with my body.

It was a Friday – just another day at work, hiding being 7 weeks pregnant, I was walking to the back to get some water (and to pee for the 400th time) and I felt a weird pop down there in lady-ville. I remember texting my best friend and telling her “I just felt a bubble pop or something-what is happening?!” She reassured me that I’m just crazy and that it was probably just my body moving something around – bodies do weird things when they’re growing a bean!

As I thought about the pop…my heart began to sink. Two days before, my symptoms had seemingly disappeared – but I let google assure me that it was natural for them to come and go so early.

I tried to keep my mind clear of negative thoughts and go about my day; I guess that worked until I got home.

I let the dog out of her kennel and had to pee AGAIN (probably time 783 for the day) when I noticed some spotting. It wasn’t the color that you can just ignore, either. I broke down there on the toilet, with only the dog home at the time to comfort me. Even though having a child was never in our plan, we had grown to accept the idea and even get excited about it. It was our new reality and I had grown quite fond of the blob in my belly, and the idea of a little red headed me running amuck.

I pulled myself together and called my husband to tell him things weren’t looking good. I tried to hold on to some hope that it was just another weird pregnancy symptom – but in my heart, I knew better.

We had plans on this night – a few friends were coming over to help us get started on our deck! Mikel and I had to go into the home improvement store to get a few last minute items…and when he was in the store, that’s when it started.

I’m a tough girl, I don’t cry…and you can rarely tell if I’m in pain. By the time he got back into the truck – I had a face full of tears and was curled up into a ball. When he asked what was wrong all I could muster was, “It hurts…it hurts a LOT.”

He wanted to take me to the ER, he wanted to cancel our deck plans…and I wouldn’t let him.

The pain came in waves – I guess technically contractions. With each set of cramps came another mass of blood and tissue. This lasted for about 5 hours…happening about every 15-20 minutes. I didn’t go lay in bed and wait it out, I didn’t lay there and cry and pity myself, I walked around outside (this actually helped with the pain, sitting was unbearable), I helped with the deck, I entertained our company…and I held tight to my husband any chance I got.

WHY did I do that…I guess because that was my way of coping at the time; my way of creating a normal amongst the very much not-normal.

I’m very lucky that my body is tough and very efficient – after the 5 excruciating hours, the rest was pretty pain free. For this, I am thankful.

I had an ultrasound the following Monday morning to confirm what I already knew and to make sure that it was all complete. I couldn’t have asked for a better and more caring and comforting nurse…she was so positive and reassuring. My body had done a good job of clearing everything out and there was no need for medical assistance of any kind.

Thank you, body, for taking care of me even though I have abused you plenty of times.

For a few days, I was sad…but wouldn’t allow myself to fall into a depression. I searched each and every day for a positive outcome, and NEVER blamed myself for the loss of our little peanut.

I guess I’m a believer in divine intervention – and that there is a reason for everything. I’m a person that is full of hope and can find the light in the darkest situation.

I know many of you reading this just can’t imagine doing that – but I promise, there is hope…and there IS a reason for everything.

Though all the emotional and physical pains, some amazing things have come for me.

I have never felt closer to my husband or more emotionally connected to him.

I have never cared more about taking care of my body and getting healthy.

I have never cherished my own life and how incredibly short it truly is.

I have never been more clear about my purpose in life, until now.

I have never felt stronger or more empowered…until now, but to me the most positive thing that has come from this is an unimaginable change in my body.

I haven’t had a single twinge of endometriosis pain since our loss.

Sure, it may be superficial and sound selfish – but where I had no hope for ever being pain free and living a normal life, NOW I do, I can, I AM!!

I’m all around a better person for this loss – and my marriage is stronger than ever.

I think every situation allows for the opportunity to get bound up in the negative and let it consume you – but those same opportunities allow for positive and life altering changes, if you choose to see them.

It’s so easy to blame yourself, it’s so easy to fall into a dark place and retreat into a depression. It’s so easy to push away from those who love you and want to help you…and it’s SO hard to stay optimistic about such a painful event…BUT, each is a choice.

I choose happy. I choose to use this event in my life to help others.

I choose to grow as a person, a wife, and a step-mother.

I choose to treat every day as a blessing.

I choose to share this story with you because, it’s real…it’s life…it happens to 1 in 4 women, and some of them just don’t know what to do.

If you are one of them just remember this;

There is nothing wrong with you.

There is nothing wrong with grieving.

There is also nothing wrong with searching for the light and making the best of a tragic situation.

There is NOTHING wrong with doing and dealing the way YOU want and not the way society proclaims you should.

This is your life, your body and your experience…make of it what you will!

My heart goes out to each and every person who has suffered from a loss of any kind, and I urge you to TRY and find some positive in the darkest situations.

“Babies lost in the womb were NEVER touched by fear, they were NEVER cold, NEVER hungry, NEVER alone and importantly they ALWAYS knew love.” – Z Clark – Coates

Have hope and stay true to who you are.

xoxo

OkieGirl

mc2