Another Twitter connection, Carmen Staicer (@mttsm) had us with her six kids (ages 18 down to 7, yet she only looks about, oh, 32). Add in that she lost 80 pounds and is close to getting her black belt in Thai boxing, and we’d be close to building her a shrine if she didn’t seem so down to earth. Here, see what I mean…
Best recent run: Just 2 miles, but it was the first run that I’ve had in quite a while, thanks to snow/ice/asthma/wind/kids at home. It was really great just to be able to get out there and get some fresh air.
Six of one, half-dozen the other: Having six kids means that it’s never quiet, there’s always someone with a story or a struggle, and there’s never enough toilet paper/bread/milk/clean towels/hot water. It means tripling recipes that are in magazines just so you can have a shot at a leftover lunch the next day. It means feeling as if I go through the same stages over and over: As soon as I get one kid potty trained/sleeping through the night/driving, there’s another one (or three) right behind.
Where’d I leave that missing weight? I lost 80 pounds almost five years ago. I was motivated by several unkind remarks from family members and from schoolmates of my daughter. My husband had asked me several times, and I decided finally enough was enough. I made many small changes to my diet, in incremental stages, and didn’t attempt to do it all at once. I started out walking--in the beginning, I was unable to walk around the block without stopping for a rest on the curb. It took 18 months, but slow and steady wins the race. (She's turned lost weight into "found" money--she's now "Chief Mom" at Diets in Review.)
Getting Cross[Fit]: CrossFit is an amazing workout, but it’s not for the weak. I love it--I’d do it every day if I could. It’s tough for me to get to the classes, though, as it’s offered at my gym at 9:00. When I go to boxing class at noon, it can make for a congested and stress-filled day to get both of those scheduled. My instructor has been sick so we’ve been taking a break, but I hope to get it back very soon. It’s more empowering than just about anything else. We’ve been experimenting with Gym Jones workouts, which are similar to CrossFit.
Caffeine and me: Ahhh, coffee. I have an intense love for that first sip. I brew Vietnamese coffee with a teeny tiny pot, and it makes for a very strong cup. I only have one a day, but there is no possible way I could start each day off without it. It clears out the synapses and gets me moving, helping me to be just a bit more prepared for the day.
A black belt goes with everything: When I had reached my weight-loss goal, I was disenchanted about normal exercise and looked for something to do. I started to train capoeira and did that for about a year, but I’m not as flexible as I once was, and I found some of the moves too difficult. I switched to Muay Thai boxing, which was the other medium offered at my gym, and I’ve never looked back. It’s liberating and fulfilling to punch the stuffing out of a bag or pad; sparring teaches you how to remain calm in a stressful situation; and I can’t quite believe I’m four to six months away from my Black Belt. My Achilles heel is going to be the requisite 17-minute, 2-mile run. I’ve never been able to run that fast, and having a torn gastrocnemius two years ago means I’m even slower--but I’m determined. One way or another, I’ll get there.
Falling in love…with me: It’s a tough thing to do when you lose weight--you still see yourself as a fat woman. When I tore my calf muscle, I was on crutches in a cast and off my feet for four months. I gained some of my weight back. Seeing those extra pounds creeping back on makes
you feel like a failure. I am really dissatisfied with my body some days: I find myself obsessing I’m not as thin as I want or over having a little muffin top. On those days, I try to find something good about myself to focus on. It’s an ongoing journey, that’s for sure. I recently had some boudoir shots done; I wanted to be able to feel good about my body. Women’s bodies are absolutely amazing in that they do so much. We need to embrace that! I think it’s important for all of us to never compare our insides to other’s outsides: Everyone puts on a good front, and we really have no idea what is going on with them internally.
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