A Revival of Sorts

Well hello there! I do apologize for being MIA for the past few weeks – I haven’t been well mentally from having almost daily anxiety attacks which tend to last from 3 to 5 hours at a time.

In fact, I ruined our 6th anniversary … well, “ruined” isn’t perhaps the proper term, but I saw Dr. Jenkins on Friday the 20th, our anniversary date, and he switched me to Klonopin that very day … by the afternoon, I was high as a kite and slurring on my newfound Klonopin, and Luke quickly vetoed the idea of going out for sushi, as we had originally planned, because I was utterly out of it. Instead, we both thought it best to keep me in the apartment, and Luke ordered us Pizza Hut instead. Yes, we did hit up Fuddruckers the next day for a good bison burger, but I felt I basically ruined our anniversary, so boo. I’m lucky to have a man who loves me despite my struggles!

The switch to Klonopin has wrecked havoc on my sleep schedule to boot, but we’re keeping our fingers crossed that the med change will help my anxiety attacks. I literally have been waking up at 4:30 a.m. for my pill, so I’ve been attempting to make adjustments to the times I take my Klonopin. Right now I take it right when I get up and then around 6 in the evening. Jenkins will hopefully get me on a new sleeping medication tomorrow (he was out today).

Moving on – I’d like to have a “revival” of sorts with this blog since I’ve been away for so long. I’d like to keep moving forward with my health and my fitness as best I can – i.e. taking pictures of my meals and logging my exercise. I’ve gotten lax about my eating (I’m still around 135-137 lbs in spite of myself), and I haven’t felt like hitting the gym much recently either. I’d like to delve back into cutting, y’all, and doing weights often. My success story *definitely* looks like the diagram below, and I’ve been stuck in a loop and am ready to break free:I’d like to accomplish my goals, and I feel like blogging helps me keep my day straight (plus, let’s be honest, it’s a fun activity), so here we go!

Breakfast

This morning I made my version of steak and eggs – I baked some marinated deer tenderloin with a bit of BBQ sauce and topped it with two fried eggs. Mixed fruit on the side, coffee to drink. This breakfast was VERY filling, probably due to all of the protein. 🙂

After breakfast, I developed a nasty headache – I think it’s due to not sleeping well at all (I woke up again at 4:45). I took some ibuprofen and hoped for the best.

I kinda slunk around after that, trying to get rid of my headache. I rested my eyes and eventually took a shower (no makeup today or hair curling today, I just did a braid/bun).

Lunch

I wanted a salad for lunch, so I roasted some broccoli, cauliflower, and carrots and placed them on a bed of spinach. I added some Boar’s Head ham and mozzarella cheese with jalapeno ranch. Easy peasy lunch.

Snack #1

Around 2, I had a small honeycrisp apple with Tajin …

Workout

Today was leg day, and man oh man, my quads were on FIRE! I left the gym winded and wobbly. 😉 (Please forgive my no make up and crappy hair look, I just wasn’t feeling makeup today after my horrid sleep.) I lifted 260 lbs on the quad press, so I was pretty impressed with myself (usually I’m at 240).
Let me tell y’all, I felt AMAZING after working out, despite being wobbly and tired. It was wonderful getting a workout in. 🙂 I’ve missed it for the past week or so of not feeling well mentally, and I plan to really get back into it!

After our workout, I picked my car up from getting an oil change and inspection, and I CLEANED THAT SUCKER OUT and took it through a car wash. It was filthy!

Snack #2

Around 5, I needed a little something-something in my tummy, so I had some cucumber, cauliflower, and tomatoes with hummus and a bit of jalapeno ranch.

I also had a kombucha around 6.

Dinner

I made stuffed bell peppers earlier this week, so I had one for dinner tonight with extra salsa. Very tasty! I impressed myself. 😉

Alrighty, that’s what I got for tonight! Hope to see you soon!

~ Mandy 🙂

 

 

A Weight-y Issue

Howdy there! Long time, no post – I’ve been pretty scattered mentally lately, but I’d like to get back on track today. I’ve been a touch low and struggling with depression on most days, but I’m feeling a little better today, so I’ll try my hand at blogging.

I’d like to talk a little bit about coming to terms with my weight. I currently weigh about 138 lbs (according to the doctor’s office), and it’s not an easy number to come to terms with when I’m used to weighing 110-125 lbs.

Why is it so hard, I ask? I don’t know! I’ve gained a ton of muscle weight, and my muscle is dense, so of course it’s going to weigh more. It’s all MENTAL – my brain says that a higher weight = fat, but that’s simply not true. A higher weight can also = MUSCLE, and that’s what’s going on with me. Everyone who knows me says I look better than I have in my entire life, so I must be doing something right!

Plus I *know* that I’m not defined by a number anymore – it’s a rough cycle to break, but I’m slowly breaking it. Luke keeps our scale in his safe, so I can’t obsess about it like I used to, and I’m grateful that he put it away. I used to be disgustingly proud of my low weight, but now I’m PROUD of my 138 lbs because it means I’ve been working hard at weightlifting, eating well, and not giving into ED behaviors.

This morning Calliope was enjoying some vigorous scratches from Luke as he woke up for school.

Breakfast

I fried two eggs in Pam and nuked three slices of bacon and covered the eggs in  enchilada sauce and chilies. Blueberries (sans sugar) on the side. Coffee to drink.

Lunch

I roasted some Brussels sprouts, carrots, and broccoli with jalapeno ranch, balsamic, and hummus for lunch. Easy peasy.

Workout

Luke and I did arms today at the gym for about 45 minutes, and although I didn’t have him snap a pic, he did snap some of my arms to show his friend (I’m very vein-y). Proof that I did, in fact, work out today! 🙂

Snack

My first snack today was a 100 calorie protein yogurt with blueberries.

After Luke headed to work for the evening, I had a new-to-me kombucha from Natural Grocers …

… the verdict? VERY GOOD! I like this brand very much. 😉

The kitties decided that it would be a good time to nap this afternoon too! I wish I could nap – I’ve never been much of a napper, so I’m jealous of them!

I also had a taste of Boar’s Head ham and American cheese with some honey mustard.

Dinner

I roasted a nice big ol’ spaghetti squash, took a portion, and I sauteed it with spinach, mozzarella cheese, Classico vodka sauce, and topped it with half of a chicken breast and two pieces of crumbled bacon.

This picture isn’t very pretty, but damn, this was tasty!

Admittedly, blogging made me *feel better* by the end of the day. I think I’ll try to do it more often, although I know I’m not the most exciting read out there.

Until soon,

~ Mandy

In a Ho-Hum Mood

Howdy there! How are you doing today? My mood was rather blah today. I don’t know what was up – I had a restless sleep last night and woke up several times. The weather was cold too, and I know for a fact that my mood is affected by the weather. I do so much better on warm, sunny days, not so much on cooler ones. I can’t tell if I was a touch depressed or just simply ho-hum about life today … Luke said I wasn’t acting depressed, so I’m thinking I was just being BLAH. My mood did take a dip towards depression by evening, which is not great news. But nothing terrible happened in the bipolar department today.

Breakfast

To be honest, I wasn’t too hungry for breakfast this morning. 😦 I don’t know what was up, but I delayed it for as long as I could. I just ended up eating an Icelandic Skyr yogurt with half a banana. I love this yogurt (cheese? I learned on Bizarre Foods that skyr is technically a cheese because I’m a massive food geek), it has 15 grams of protein in a serving, which is amazing!

Lunch

Still feeling a bit blah and unimaginative, I made a completely uninspired lunch – I roasted some broccoli, cauliflower, Brussels sprouts, asparagus, and carrot with Lawry’s Seasoning, and I topped them with some jalapeno ranch and hummus.

This meal was meatless, but that’s okay – it was very filling to me. Sometimes I just gotta get my veggies in.

After lunch, Luke and I loaded up his truck with items to store in my mom’s attic, and we drove to my mom’s house to unload. Then we ran by Natural Grocers to meet Luke’s friend, Marc, and I wanted to check out some cacao powder for my coffee in the morning.

Here’s what I bought:

Snack

I had the rest of my banana with some PB and cinnamon.

Luke and Caprica were chilling this afternoon …

… and Calliope was resting on the Xbox while Persephone was rolling on the floor, wanting attention.

Workout

Despite my so-so mood, Luke and I did chest day – we worked out for about 40 minutes, and I impressed myself by doing 50 lbs on the chest press (I usually am at 40 lbs).

Post-Workout Snack

I wasn’t starving after working out, but I needed a little something-something to tide me over until dinner, so I cut up 1/2 of a cucumber, added salt, and placed it in some hummus with jalapeno ranch. Easy peasy.

I didn’t eat very much hummus or ranch on these – I served myself waaay to much ranch, but that’s okay, I’ll save it for another day.

Dinner

Luke was craving a steak today, but we decided to save money and go with hamburgers instead.

I started my dinner off at 6:30 with a portion of bagged Country Ranch salad from United … I just love bagged salads because they’re so easy!

By hamburger time at 7, however, my mood had dipped into a depression, and I began thinking about not having a hamburger to punish myself for a minor indiscretion pointed out by my husband (and why I became depressed). Restrictive thinking at it’s finest, y’all … whenever I feel that I’ve done something wrong, I immediately go down that route.

I eventually decided to eat my hamburger and topped it with American cheese, tomato, avocado, pickles, and BBQ sauce.

I also had a kombucha as an after dinner drink.

Alrighty, that’s my spiel for today. Tonight I’m working on self-care and self-preservation from this depression, which sucks, but it must be done. I have a feeling I’ll be going to bed early tonight.

Hope you’ve had a good day,

~ Mandy

Hello Facebook + Adventures in Dietary Cutting 3

Guten Tag, y’all! How are you guys doing today? 😉

I linked my blog to Facebook today … I don’t know how well it will be received by my friends and family, but I want to share my story, and share I will! If people don’t like my posts, they can just ignore them. 😉

I’m still on my cutting diet today, obviously, but I’m trying to branch out and eat a different variety of food instead of sticking to the same ol’ thing. I do like my eggs for breakfast though, so I doubt that’ll change anytime soon … I did buy some yogurt today, so I might try that for breakfast one morning to see if I like it.

Mood Update: I’m as stable as I could hope to be today, no depression and very minimal “zippy-ness” from the bipolar. I did become very tired around 5 o’clock for some reason, not depressed or anything like that, just tired after my workout. More on that below.

Disordered Eating Update: Y’all. MY BINGE AND PURGE URGES ARE COMPLETELY GONE. This is BEYOND thrilling! I’m doing so well with eating decent meals and not throwing up or restricting, and it’s delightful. I feel STRONGER than I ever have in my entire life.

I found this quotation on Facebook, and I just love it:

Yes, I have returned to myself after nearly 18 years of hell and am discovering myself in full bloom. 🙂

Breakfast

I needed a little something-something before my main breakfast around 6:30 a.m., so I had 1/2 C of cottage cheese with about 1/2 C of strawberries and a drizzle of honey.

Then I promptly went back to sleep for an hour! Wow, I never do that.

Around 9, I had an egg with salsa and two turkey sausage patties.

After running a few errands, I made lunch … I went to the store and acquired chicken breasts, so I was happy!

Lunch

I roasted Brussels sprouts, carrots, broccoli, and cauliflower with a little Lawry’s Seasoning and then I added the 5 oz of chicken with about a tbsp of BBQ sauce and baked it for 30 minutes. I added about a tbsp of ranch on the veg and enjoyed! (The chicken is hidden in the veggies in this pic!)

This was a higher calorie meal for me, but that’s okay. 🙂 It was very filling and tasty.

After eating lunch, I made Luke some deer enchiladas for his meals at work this week – it’s such an easy recipe, and I used some of Luke’s dad’s enchilada sauce and spices.

Workout

Luke and I did legs today for about 40 minutes … man, my legs were like JELLO after our workout. I was EXHAUSTED from it!

Post-Workout Snack

My snack today was pretty simple -half of a cucumber, a small carrot, and two slices of deer sausage with Whataburger jalapeno ranch dressing. YUM!

Luke had cereal and milk for his post-workout snack, and Caprica was on hand to help him finish it!

I also made some Yogi Tea Green Tea Blueberry Slim Life and put it in my Yeti with some stevia. Very tasty tea! I highly recommend it – it’s new to me, and it’s a delight.

Dinner

At 6 p.m. I simply wasn’t hungry, and that’s my typical dinner time. I think my snack held me over well. I spent my time instead sipping tea, cleaning up the apartment, and taking pictures of my sleepy kitt lits:

Eventually, around 6:45, I decided that a little salad sounded good.

I roasted a small yellow squash and a few asparagus spears, and once they were done, I heated up a small portion of the deer enchiladas and placed them on a bed of mixed greens with my roasted veg. I topped the veggies with a small smattering of jalapeno ranch and a little light sour cream and salsa for the enchiladas. I ended up eating dinner around 7.

I gotta say, those deer enchiladas turned out SO DAMN WELL – they’re spicy but not too hot, meaty, and are delicious with a little sour cream. I’m proud of myself. 😉

Now I’m off to vacuum the apartment and then to take a hot bath and chillax a bit. I *really* need to get back on that damn stair master … we shall see if I have it in me to do so tomorrow! Lifting weights is my favorite thing, but I need to get in some cardio that tones my butt and calves.

So here we go, Facebook World … if you’re new to my blog, hello! I hope you’ve enjoyed it.

Hope you’ve had a great day!

~ Mandy

 

 

 

 

Decorating + Spring Cleaning + A Crazy Good Workout

HELLO there! How are you doing today?! Luke and I have been spring cleaning our apartment like crazy this weekend – seriously, we have so much stuff to store in my mom’s attic now! We’re going to decorate a little bit more too – that’s my favorite part of this endeavor.

I’m also back at my cutting diet – I had an indulgent weekend, so I need to get back on track.

Breakfast

Breakfast was 2 eggs with turkey sausage and strawberries. Easy peasy. Coffee to drink!

After breakfast, I hit up TJ Maxx and Ross Dress for Less for a few decorative items.

I’d like to add some flowers or floral wreaths to these decorative items to liven things up, so I’ll hit Hobby Lobby another day. 🙂

Ok, this is where my day gets a touch dicey – I fell into a deep bipolar depression around 12:00, so I didn’t take a picture of my lunch (I was in bed for about an hour and just couldn’t shake the depression). I’ll share what I ate anyway through words, not pictures.

Lunch

I had 1 C of broccoli, 1 C of carrots, and 1 C of cauliflower roasted and topped with a small drizzle of ranch dressing along with about 1/2 C of cottage cheese, raspberries, and a drizzle of honey. Another easy peasy meal.

Depressed and moody, I made hot mint green tea to drink around 1:45.

Snack

Around 3, I had a sliced carrot with hummus, salsa, and some light ranch.

I received two packages from Free People in the mail soon after my snack, and I gleefully opened them and tried on my goodies – one top was far too large, so I’m sending it back, but the little dress was AMAZING!

I’m going to order it in another color because I love it so much AND it’s a great sale price – it’s a little short for a windy day (I live in the windiest city in the USA, damn it!), but it covers my bum, and I can wear shorts or leggings underneath it. I’m wearing an XS, and I’d say that this runs a little big, so petites will be sized out, boo!

Workout

Luke and I went to the gym and did arms for an hour, from about 4 to 5 p.m. I look constipated in all of the pics he took of me since I’m working hard, but I’ll share a few:

Hot damn, I had a GREAT pump after this workout and my mood changed to a more positive one! 🙂 I’m going to make it a point to do the dreaded stair master tomorrow and see if I can’t get my calves and my booty in better shape.

Post Workout Snack

I needed some PROTEIN after getting my pump on, so I had some Boar’s Head ham and American cheese with some honey mustard sauce for dipping. YUM! Perfect post-workout snack, if you ask me. I ate this around 5.

I also made Ginger Tea and put it in my Wonder Woman Yeti … I drink a lot of water and tea throughout the day, and ginger tea was delicious! I’d like to make my own ginger tea – Luke’s father showed me how to process fresh ginger into a potent beverage, and I need to make it here at home.

Wow, my arms and shoulders look AWESOME in this picture … I’m looking the best I’ve ever had.

Dinner

I roasted my portioned out cauliflower, broccoli, and carrots yet again (1 C each) and tossed in a few cherry tomatoes. I drizzled them with some ranch.

While my veggies roasted, I broke out my usual kombucha around 6:35.

I also had some deer sausage with honey mustard and BBQ for dipping. Easy peasy.

All in all, I had a pretty good day despite the depressive episode. I was very “high” after lifting weights and could barely type anything out because I had such a big pump going, which is always good.

Tonight Luke let me order three sale items from Free People – the Jane Printed Romper in black, the Cross Your Heart Muscle in Gray, and the Sweet Trip Smocked Tube Top in Wisteria. I hope these all fit well, and I’ll review them on here once I get them. 🙂

I also cleaned out my underwear and workout clothes drawers like a maniac – it feels SO GOOD to have things organized and de-cluttered. Huzzah!

Alrighty, that’s my spiel for today. It got a little long-winded, but hey, that’s just me.

Hope you’ve had a lovely day!

~ Mandy

On Gym Judgement

Hello there! How are you doing today? I was MANIC AF last night, and then I had a massive mood swing and became depressed. It was ROUGH. Being bipolar really sucks sometimes!

Breakfast

I wanted something comforting for breakfast as I had a hard night last night, and banana pumpkin oatmeal sounded amazing-balls. I made a batch and enjoyed it thoroughly! The PB and the granola toppings made it delish!

Workout #1

I did 35 minutes on the elliptical today and 15 minutes walking at 4.0 mph. All in all, a good workout (despite having to use the bathroom like 3 times during it). I snapped a pic of myself (forgive our dirty bathroom mirror, I’m totally on it!) after my workout to show how I look on a typical morning BEFORE my shower. Yes, I look a little tired and grungy, but that’s because I AM! 🙂

And this is what I look like AFTER I’m all cleaned up and dressed today:

I look so much better after I’ve put on my makeup and done my hair … but that’s the beauty of the gym – nobody cares what you look like because they’re busy focusing on themselves, not you. And you should focus on YOURSELF too! 🙂 “Gym judgement” be damned, it’s truly not something to worry about, if you ask my opinion.

Gym time is therapy time for me … the gym sees two versions of me during the day typically – I go in the morning to do cardio before my shower and makeup (I wear extra deodorant!), and then I go in the afternoons to weight lift with my hubby looking much more put together. But again, nobody cares what you look like at the gym! You’re just there to better yourself, nothing more, and it’s nobody’s business what you look like! I used to worry about “gym judgement” but now I don’t, and there’s no reason to do so!

Lunch

I was in a very veggie-mood today, so I roasted some red bell pepper, carrots, and Brussels sprouts with S+P, EVOO, and garlic powder for lunch. I also boiled three eggs and heated 4 slices of turkey bacon. I topped my mix with some honey mustard sauce.

Delicious and filling! Yum! (And the kitt lits were BADGERING ME the entire time I was eating …. they wanted butt-pets!)

Speaking of kitt lits, I forced Luke to pick up Persephone (who was sound asleep on the couch) and hold her so I could get a good picture of him and his muscles. 😉 I don’t take nearly enough pics of Luke, and I’d like to change that!

For reference, this is how my man used to look back in the day (he probably weighs about 140-145 lbs in this pic).

After lunch, I got out the scale and weighed myself – I’m at 133 lbs (with food and fluids in my belly), and I’m completely satisfied with that number. 😉

Workout #2

Luke and I hit the gym up again to do chest day – we stayed about 40 minutes before Luke had to head home to get ready for work, but we got a great workout in. I lifted 50 lbs on the chest machine below, and I was impressed with myself as I usually just do 40 lbs. I also did 15 lbs on a few of the cables (not too terribly many, as I tend to stay around 10 lbs, but hey, improvement is improvement).

Upon returning home, we noticed that snakey-poo Drogo was out and chilling on his log … he may be hungry again although we just fed him on Monday! I think we’ll get him another mouse tomorrow.

Snack

Around 4, I broke out a Synergy kombucha in Trilogy …

I also had some cucs with Hickory Smoked tuna and honey mustard. Easy peasy.

I also tried something new-to-me: Halo Top ice cream in chocolate chip cookie dough. I just had a small taste, but man oh man, it was GOOD! A definite keeper – a nice alternative to ice cream.

Dinner

I started dinner off with an opal apple, PB, cinnamon, and nutmeg. I was pretty snacky, after all, and needed a little something-something. This apple hit the spot and felt decadent with the PB and spices.

Later on, I baked a chicken breast with BBQ, some zucchini, broccoli, and asparagus, and I made a nice green salad with some quinoa and brown and red rice blend with flaxseed. I topped my salad with the veg and chicken and drizzled on some jalapeno ranch.

Ok y’all, this was a GIGANTIC dinner selection. Delicious, but gigantic. I probably shouldn’t have eaten it all, but I did!

Tomorrow I plan to resume my cutting adventures for sure – I took the day off today, which is fine, but if I want results, I need to stick with it! So cheers to that!

Hope you had a FABULOUS day! I’m just chilling now, cleaning up the apartment, and watching Josh Gates’ Destination Truth.

~ Mandy

World Bipolar Day + A Small Piece of My Story

Hello there! It’s WORLD BIPOLAR DAY (March 30th), and I’m writing a special post to commemorate it.

I’ve struggled with bipolar disorder for most of my life (despite being misdiagnosed with clinical depression around the age of 11), and it’s an important part of who I am. Now, being bipolar does *not* define me as a person. I am not a diagnosis. I do, however, live with my diagnosis and the issues that it brings daily. I’m somewhere in between being Bipolar I and Bipolar II, according to my psychiatrist. I’ve been psychotic. I’ve had periods of wild mania. I’ve been severely depressed for months at a time. I’ve had mixed episodes. I’ve been suicidal and have indulged in self-harm (especially during my teenage years).

Here’s a great overview of what it means to have the bipolar disorder diagnosis.

What exactly does being bipolar mean to me specifically? Well, it mainly means MOOD SWINGS – I’m talking daily ones which are rapid. I can go from happy-go-lucky and fine to severely depressed or manic in mere seconds, and it’s a booger of a disease to deal with, especially when nothing specific causes my depressions or mania, and they *simply happen.* It’s hard to explain how this makes a person like me feel … I often feel helpless and hopeless when those mood swings occur, and it’s frustrating because nothing in particular causes them except for my damn brain.

Everyone has mood swings from time to time, y’all. But bipolar mood swings are like a switch in your brain rapidly switches from HAPPY to DEPRESSED or from NORMAL to MANIC, usually all within the course of one day.

I began experiencing wild mood swings when I was about 10 years old. I was misdiagnosed by the well-meaning but highly ignorant family doctor and put on Celexa, which obviously didn’t help with the bipolar disorder. I went through middle school and high school on various cocktails of anti-depressants, no mood stabilizers in sight, and my moods raged terribly.

Finally, around age 20, I went to a different psychiatrist who properly diagnosed me as being bipolar, and we started experimenting with mood stabilizers. Let me tell ya, experimenting with meds and going through psychiatrists is hell on wheels. But sadly, it must be done to find the proper combination which works for the specific person. I’ve been on most psych meds that you can name, and I’ve been committed to the local “nuthouse” three times in my young life. It’s a constant struggle to remain stable ….

But my current and favorite doctor, Dr. Jenkins, who I began seeing in 2008, finally has me on a FANTASTIC combination of meds which keep me as stable as I could hope to be – Latuda (mood stabilizer and my SAVIOR med), Rexulti (anti-depressant), Trintellix (anti-depressant), Trazadone (sleep drug and anti-depressant), Gabapentin (anxiety drug), Xanax (anxiety drug), and Buspar (anxiety drug). Anxiety and bipolar disorder often go hand-in-hand, and I’m a prime example of that.

I’m a bit of an oddity by being bipolar and having struggled with an ED too – usually individuals with eating disorders are diagnosed as struggling with depression, not bipolar disorder (clearly there are exceptions, such as Marya Hornbacher; duh, I’m one of them too!). But bipolar disorder and ED’s play their sick game together well, sadly, and that’s something I’ve had to deal with in my young life too.

And that’s my spiel on being bipolar today. Again, it’s a DAILY struggle to stay stable, and it’s my full-time job in this life to try my best and remain as stable as I can. This is only a teeny part of my story and experiences … it’s hard to put it all into words, but I tried my best today. 🙂

~ Mandy