Confession

165.8.

My current weight. I am putting it out there for all to see. I am not where I’d like to be. I gained 25 pounds since my celiac diagnosis. First, I was in denial. It was only 10 pounds. I’ll lose it easily. But it just kept coming. Then came anger. How the fuck did I gain all this weight? Fuck celiac disease. Yes, I kept blaming my celiac disease. Going gluten free can cause weight gain but I think mine was probably just the first 10-15 pounds. I put on those pounds pretty quickly after going gluten free. The other 10 pounds? I slowly packed those on.

I was depressed about having celiac and going gluten free. So I ate. I ate crappy gluten free baked goods because I could. I ate entire packages of Glutino cookies because they were better than my beloved Oreos.

But I think I have finally reached acceptance.

self confidence
Probably one of the last times I felt happy & confident in myself.

I know I gained the weight and I’m not happy with it. I know only I can change it. So I started. In July I focused on eating healthy. The past week or so I have been tracking my food. I redid my calorie and macro calculations and am working to hit those goals. Anyone know how I can reduce the number of carbs? I eat WAY too many carbs for being gluten free!

I am slowly trying to get active again. I am working towards my 10K steps per day and 10 plus minutes of stretching. I am slowly adding running back in. And by the end of August, I hope to start lifting weights again. I was feeling so much stress earlier this summer. Work was crazy. Running my own business on top of work and then trying to fit in workouts was making me crazy.

So I stopped.

Often we neglect our mental health, but it is just as important as our physical health. We need to make sure our mind is healthy. My anxiety was getting crazy high. I was starting into a downward spiral of depression. So I stepped back. I thought, what can I drop and/or refocus on? For me, it was working out and eating better. I couldn’t skip my job. We kinda need the money. I don’t want to give up my business. I am still trying to grow it to where I want it to be. So I stopped my workouts. I still took daily walks. I started making better food choices.

I started small and am building towards where I want to be.

What else happened when I gained all this weight? I lost my self-confidence. I want that back. I want to feel confident in everything I do. I want to feel good in my clothes. Right now all my clothes feel too tight or don’t sit well. Plus, I am wearing the same few pieces all the time. They are easy. I know they fit somewhat ok. It’s time to start utilizing everything in my closet. I want to wear skirts and heels. I want to put on makeup and feel pretty again.

I truly believe that sometimes you need to fake it until you make it. I know if I start dressing like I feel pretty or sexy, I will actually start feeling pretty and sexy again. My plan is to get in the shower just 5 minutes earlier. Five minutes should give me enough time to pick out a different outfit and put on some eye shadow and mascara. I can put on lipstick at work after I eat my breakfast.

How do you boost your self-confidence when you aren’t feeling 100%?

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Cleaning out my closet

Recently I made a rash decision and started cleaning out my closet

cleaning-out-my-closetI was struggling to get dressed quickly in the mornings for work. I was tired of not having clothes that went together. I was annoyed at clothes that were too small taking up space. I wanted a cohesive closet that would make getting dressed much easier. My style was too eclectic and nothing ever seemed to look right.

So clothes got tossed.

I didn’t even bother folding them neatly. I pulled them off the hanger and tossed them on the bedroom floor. I needed to do this. I wanted it done sooner rather than later.

What were my guidelines when deciding what stays and what goes? I had a few very simple ways to decide:

  • For the current season, if I haven’t worn it in three months.
  • For next season, if I didn’t wear it during last winter.
  • Anything that was too big, small, long or short.
  • Anything that was no longer my style.
  • Anything that was too sheer.
  • And anything that doesn’t go with my other clothes.

I made the conscious decision to move my style in one direction. I am drawn to rock n roll and boho styles. My wardrobe was becoming a mess of random pieces from genre. I decided I love the rock n roll style more and am paring down my wardrobe to those pieces. I saved a few boho pieces that fit in with a more rock n roll style but the rest were tossed. Now when I shop, I have a single style in mind and I know if I stick to my color palette and patterns that everything will go with each other.

I decided to get rid of anything that doesn’t fit right now. I am trying to lose weight but there is no guarantee I will (or how long it will take). It gets depressing looking at clothes that are too small just hanging in my closet. Also, items that are too big don’t do anything to make me look good so they had to go as well.  I want to look good in my clothes. I want to be confident when I walk down the street.

I want to be my bad ass self.

What will I do with all my old clothes? I will have Goodwill come and pick them up. Just because I no longer get joy from these pieces doesn’t mean someone else won’t.

I find that less clutter makes me happier and stress less. It is so much less stressful to be able to get dressed quickly and easily for work, which leaves a few more minutes to sleep or workout or just relax.

And being happier with my wardrobe makes me more confident.

Have you cleaned out your closet lately? If so, how do you decide what stays or goes?

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Earn those booty shorts

I have a problem.

I can’t stop buying workout clothes, gadgets, shoes, and gear. My dresser is exploding with compression shorts, tech t’s, and sports bras. My gear box is spilling out visors, headphones, and sunglasses. I am always going to want new gear so I needed to find a way to reign in my spending. I also thought it might be motivating to know I have to earn booty shorts and can’t just grab a cute pair when I’m at the Under Armour outlet.

I also thought this might be a good solution to get and keep me motivated to work out. I go through stages when I do really well, work out every day, and then I fall off the horse and completely stop working out.

I am trying to find some consistency.

At the beginning of this year, I started a reward program for myself. I decided for each yoga session and weight lifting session I would receive $1. For every mile I run I earn $1. For the first quarter, I gave myself $1 for each pound I lost but that became complicated if I lost .4 one week, gained .2 the next, then lost .6 the next. I dropped that when I started the second quarter.

I also was taking away $1 for every missed workout but decided not to do that for the month of June. It wasn’t really a deterrent for me. I still skipped my workout and justified it as “if I’m not working out I don’t need new clothes”. For June, I have just paid myself accordingly for each workout. I think it is best to just keep it as simple as possible.

I track it on a Google doc sheets. I have a tab for each quarter and track three months on each sheet. I have four columns for each month. The first is the day of the week, the next column is the date, then the amount, and finally a column for notes. In the notes, I indicate which workout I did or if it was a scheduled rest day. If I didn’t work out I may fill in the reason. Most recently I noted the days with high temperatures and high pollution advisory.

Here are screenshots of the spreadsheet I put together. It is not advanced or fancy but it does the job. I have them separated into weeks but now that I am not using my weight I could take the row out. I weigh myself on Sundays and left a gap to enter my weight. As you can see, I have spent some of the money. After I made the screenshots I moved the quarter 1 balance to quarter 2 and then subtracted the new headphones I bought.

I need to get in a few more workouts, my balance is down to $29!

Do you reward yourself for working out? How do you stay motivated?

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Find Your Confidence

Confidence: how do you find yours?

confidence
I felt confident this day because I was wearing a very “me” outfit & mascara.

Confidence can be a fickle thing. One day you feel on top of the world, the next you want to crawl under the covers and never come out. What do you do on those bad days? The days you feel like the worst person on Earth? When you feel stupid or fat or unworthy? How do you get back on top?

I have days where I have to “fake it until I make it”. The days you just have to slap a smile on your face and get through the day. But how does one work towards having self-confidence on more days than not? For me, I like to look good. I feel that presenting a good face helps build you up.

Confidence comes from within but I firmly believe you can help boost it from the outside. When my confidence is up, I wear different clothes, shoes and actually put on makeup. When it’s down, I put on comfy clothing, flats, and no makeup. My outside is matching my insides (and it isn’t always pretty lol).

You don’t have to be a fashionista or makeup artist either. Wear what you feel best in. If you prefer flats to heels, wear your favorite flats. If you only like lipstick, put on your favorite color. On your high confidence days, notice what you are wearing. Notice what you did (sometimes a hobby can give us a boost). Take note and when you have a bad day, put on that favorite outfit, swipe on some mascara and walk out the door with your head held high.

What tips do you have for when you need a confidence boost? Leave them in the comments.

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2016 Goals

I don’t usually make resolutions. We all make the same resolutions, lose weight, quit this, be a better person. We usually start out gung-ho and go all out. We join a gym. We buy something to help us quit that bad habit. We work out, balls to the wall, for a month or so. Then our drive starts to fade. We think I can skip it today. I will start again on Monday. Yet we never do. By March, our resolutions are a thing of the past. We revert to all our old ways. Nothing really changes.

This year I have made goals for myself. I tried to make them specific and achievable. I am not going to go out and just run a marathon or vow to never eat ice cream again. I looked at different areas of my life and came up with things I want to do, not ways I want to change. If I don’t hit these goals it doesn’t mean I’m a failure, just that I need to reflect and adjust accordingly for next time.

Fashion
Clean out closet and drawers
Donate items I don’t wear
Don’t buy anything new, unless it is a necessity (for example, dress pants for work may be a necessity but a new top isn’t)
Wear more of what is in my closet and accessorize!

Fitness
Run 500 miles
Start training for a marathon in Jan 2017
Complete New Rules of Lifting for Women
Do a second round of New Rules… or find similar program

Food
Have fruit and vegetable serving at each meal
Eat more vegetables (I tend to go fruit heavy)
As always, add more protein to each meal
Complete Don’t Eat it. Deal with it and work on stress eating

Fun
Read 55 books over the year
Read one business book each month
Read at least two books for fun each month
Try to read five books per month

Financial 
I want to work on my credit card debt. I plan to use the snowball method to pay down my bills.
I also want to save more money and spend less. I am planning to work on not buying anything I don’t need. If at the end of 2016 I have saved money and there is an item I want, I will purchase at that time.
Spend less on groceries. I used to be really good at this but have gotten away from it.

I don’t know if I will reach all these goals but I am going to try. I tried to make each goal achievable and measurable. I have ways to track most of the goals (spreadsheet, journals) and may come up with a way to track everything.

What are your goals for 2016 and how do you track your progress?

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Keyhole Top

Earlier this month I wore my plaid express shorts and a new top from Old Navy. I thought the outfit looked pretty good and decided to take some photos for the blog. I tried to use my fancy camera equipment, but I wasn’t able to quickly figure out how the reflector stand works. I will have to figure it out; the set did not come with much instruction.

I was also not happy with the full body shots. I think I need to work on my posing and modeling skills. I had to delete the full body ones; you will not get to see the shorts this time.

Lastly, I need a better space to take pictures in. The area in these shots  has too much going on. I previously used my backyard, but it is so boring and brown. Brown wall and brown dirt. I will think on this.

My shirt is from Old Navy. The necklace is H&M from like 10 years ago and I don’t recall where I got the bracelet, probably Kohls. Oh, and the shoes are from Target.

 

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(not) Leather and (not) Lace

Runs on Espresso originally started as a fashion blog called heelaholic. Over time, it evolved into so much more and I changed the name to Runs on Espresso to better capture what the blog represents. Today I wanted to take go back to my roots and bring you an outfit of the day.

I hope to bring back more fashion to the blog to go along with everything else I post. I have a lot of interests and I want to share them with you!

Please bear with me as I take all my own photos using a tripod and remote. I am a photographer, not a model. Also, I have to take the photos in an area with a plain wall, good lighting and enough distance to set up the tripod. In other words, I am limited so the setting is kind of boring.

I ordered this dress from Old Navy for like $10, yay for coupons! I figured even if I only wore it a few times I would get my money’s worth. I love that the front panel is leather-like as it adds a bit of edge to an otherwise plain black dress. I also like the stretch in the rest of the dress.

My heels are from Kohl’s; they are Rock & Republic. I love studs so I was originally attracted to the ankle straps. I also like these because the toe cap has a pattern rather than plain black.

I kept my accessories simple this day because I didn’t feel like going all out. I am wearing  a necklace and ring from Na Hoku, bought in Hawaii. I also have on a hair tie (because you never know when you will need one) and my Fitbit Surge (here is my review of the Surge as well).

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I am not a size 6

I was out and about on Sunday and decided to stop in The Gap. I wandered around but nothing really stood out to me except a pair of jean shorts. I decided to try them on and grabbed a size 10. 10 is safe I have a few pants in size 8 but my 10’s fit pretty well, not too tight and not too big. I figured it was a decent starting point.

I asked the sales woman for a size 8. I thought these would fit much better… no such luck. Although  you could no longer stuff a small child in the gap, it was still significant. I cursed my big butt and small waist and then debated if I should give up or try going down to a 6. A 6??

I ended up not trying the 6 on. I was afraid to go down yet another size. I couldn’t bring myself to be disappointed if they didn’t fit. I know it was either the cut or vanity sizing that made the 10 and 8 too large. I know I am not a 6. I am barely a size 8. If this is not a case of vanity sizing I don’t know what is. I still get nervous trying on an 8 because it is hit or miss. Either The Gap is using vanity sizing or every other store is producing much smaller sizes.

I am also noticing vanity sizing in tops. Over the years I have been in medium through extra-large, depending on the top. Lately it seems large is too big every time and a few mediums are getting to be big as well. I ordered some tops and dresses last weekend and was worried that the mediums might be too small in a couple of them. I was wrong. A few of them are borderline too big. I may need to start trying on small tops and I know I am not that tiny.

I am happy being an 8 and a medium. Maybe someday I will be a 6 and small but for now I am an 8 and medium. I am happy to be there and not ready for the disappointment of a size not fitting. I am just starting to accept I am a size 8. As far back I can remember I have been a 10-12 and large, granted I tended to confuse fitted with tight in my younger years. If I am honest with myself I am a size 8 as they fit but I still like my few size 10’s that are a bit loose.

 

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Writers Wanted

I am looking for writers for RunsOnEspresso. I am currently unable to keep up with the blog as I am working on another project. I am looking for someone (or a few someones) that can post at least once a week.

The blog focuses on food, fashion and fitness but there is also room for reviews of books and movies (or products or anything really) and things that fall into a lifestyle blog category.

If you are interested please email me at palegreenstars9@gmail.com to discuss the opportunity. If you know anyone who is interested please have them contact me.

The position would be completely voluntary as the blog does not earn money. I would retain ownership of the blog.

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Charming Charlie Spree

A few weekends ago a friend was in town. We ended up in Charming Charlie and each grabbed up a ton of accessories. Here are a few items I bought.

owl
This little guy was just too cute.

birds
I love the vintage look of these birds and the mixed metals.

leaf ring
This was the best picture of the ring I could get. It is a sparkly leaf design.

cuff
This cuff has an art deco feel to it. Better yet, clearance!

tiger ring 1 tiger ring 2
And I could not resist this tiger ring.

I couldn’t get the best pictures of some items and a few I could get nothing usable. I need to get a different camera lens to do close-ups of such small, detailed objects, such as the rings.

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