Archive for the 'As The Body Changes' Category

Hello Gorgeous!

 

This is the greeting on the home page of Physique 57.  When I started my on-again, off-again dalliance with Physique 57 three years ago these were just words on a screen.  Three years later and they’re finally having an impact.  It’s not the lovely ladies at Physique or my fantastic coach, Marie, at Equinox.  It’s me.  

I’m lucky.  Most of my life I’ve never had to worry about weight. But, these past few years have been an awakening for me … a knee injury or two can really throw things off track.  And getting back into the swing of things is not as easy as I’d like it to be. But, when I put my mind to something, I just work to make it happen (calorie counting, working out 4-5 times a week, drinking a ton of water, whatever it takes).

I’ve always been athletic in some way, shape or form.  As a kid I did all the typical things – tap, ballet, gymnastics, soccer, cheerleading (yes, this is a sport! Didn’t you see Bring It On?) and then I fell in love with competitive figure skating. From there I graduated to track and field (in the Fall I ran cross country and carb-loaded and then sprinted with the wind during the Spring) and then in college I became a part of Jane Fonda’s aerobic craze (I know, I’m dating myself here).  All the time running, on the road or on the treadmill plus weight-lifting was always a part of the workout routine.  

It clicked for me  a week ago Friday during the stretch segment of a Physique class when the teacher (I wish I could remember her name!) said that if you stretch for 5 minutes every day you burn 25 calories and at the end of the week that 25 minutes equals a glass of wine. Hello Gorgeous! I live to EAT.  I love good food and beverages, adult and otherwise.  The light bulb went off for me.  It was my Hello Gorgeous! moment.  Call me crazy, which I may very well be, but whatever gets you to the gym isn’t a bad thing (and getting there is half the battle) …. For me it’s food.  Some people say they really love to work out, they love the way they feel sweating and huffing and puffing and whatnot.  Happy for them.  Not me.  I’m conditioned to do it because I’ve done it my whole life (thank you mom for making sure we were physically active, truly – much appreciated). I don’t know why I did it then –sports were fun, quality time with my friends, sports honed my competitive edge and taught me about being a gracious winner and an even more gracious loser, all things that have served me well in life (yes, I am emblematic of Nike’s if you let her play campaign) ……. But now, for me, I work out so I can eat what I want. There. I said it.  Hello Gorgeous!

As The Body Changes :: Model Envy

 

I overate this past holiday season. And because I overate, I did not sleep well.  Which means that on more than one ocassion, I found myself wide awake at 3 am surfing the ‘net.  Truth be told, although sleep would have been welcome, it was nice to catch up on something of the things my hectic 4th quarter prevented me from doing … you know, reading books, magazines, perusing my favorite websites and blogs, etc.  One of my early morning discoveries was ASOS.  I knew ASOS existed.  For those of you who don’t know, ASOS stands for As Seen On Screen.  Yup, if you see someone on tv or in a movie wearing something and you must have it, ASOS is the online store for you.  In essence, it’s a global online clothing store that stocks some of the hottest designers and great knockoffs for the 16 year olds they cater to, see below for more explanation.

Anyways, I’ve linked to ASOS a million times from other sites and blogs and had a pretty good sense of the type of clothes they stocked.  Well, let’s just say I spent a good chunk of time on their sale page.  Great clothes and good sale prices, but I was shocked at how young and how SKINNY the models were.  I mean really?  Anyone that young and skinny cannot afford to pay for a $500 pair of leather jeggings on sale, right?  Then, I looked at the “About Us” page and was a little dismayed to discover that their target audience is fashion forward 16-34 year-olds. Really?  Don’t they know that 40 is the new 30?!?!!?  But, that did explain the stick thin models without an inch of curve.  That said, my late night online carousing did inspire me to re-commit myself to the gym and Physique 57. I’ll never be a skinny 16 year old again, nor do I want to be, but I do want to get back to my fighting weight and there’s no time like the present to put a plan into action.

As The Body Changes . . .

Age appropriate dressing . . . So, what exactly does this mean in this day and age?  I live in jeans and heels and  I am Une Femme d’Un Certain Age.  Should I be rockin’ my Ladies Who Lunch heels and dresses daily given my age and station in life?  Like some of you, I live in a city where youth is celebrated and 50 is the new 30.  If I need to look like a grown up, I certainly can and do.  However, my downtown jetset lifestyle doesn’t always require that I look anything other than hip and cool.  However, the other day my husband challenged me to embrace my age and dress the part.  I have neither accepted nor rejected his challenge.  I’m mulling it over.  What would this stylish septuagenarian advise?  What do you do?  Can someone tell your age by the clothes you wear?  I can tell you this much, when I’m her age – I want to be as fabulous as she is!

[photo courtesy of Advanced Style]

As The Body Changes . . .

On Monday I was in the airport trying to read the Departures screen and no matter how hard I squinted, things just weren’t coming into focus.  Once through TSA, I was in line to order food but I really couldn’t read the sign until I was up at the register and even then I was having a hard time.  Once I got my food and sat down it hit me.  I am Une Femme d’Un Certain Age and one of the perks! of this categorization is compromised eye-sight.  Fortunately for me, I learned about Warby Parker at the top of the year and am in possession of some very cool vintage-inspired frames.  Yes, I go to the eye doctor yearly and have had a prescription for nearsightedness since I was a teenager, but I didn’t really need to wear my glasses unless I was tired or driving at night.

What a difference a pair of glasses make! Yesterday I arrived at the airport armed with my glasses on and lo and behold I had no trouble reading anything.  No s*&# Sherlock, right?  Well, yes and no.  Vanity had to take a back seat this time.  So, if you too are a UFDCA and have been avoiding the obvious or if you are sensible and know you need glasses or contacts in order to be able to function but haven’t found frames that speak to your heart check out Warby Parker.  WP is a funky little online boutique offering vintage-inspired frames at the amazingly low price of $95.  Yup, $95 for the frame plus your prescription!

Buy eyeglasses online? Sure, why not?  You buy just about everything else online, right?  WP is the brainchild of four Wharton Business School graduates, who decided to step outside of the box.  You can upload your picture to their website and try frames on virtually or your can choose 5 pairs to try on in the privacy of your own home and they will send them to you for free.  They’ve got 27 frames handcrafted from cellulose acetate to choose from in 10 different colors like tortoise and amber.  Oh, and now they’ve got sunglasses too. Mabel is calling my name!  And the best part, aside from looking very hip and cool in your new frames, is that for each pair of glasses purchased, a pair is given to someone through WP’s “Buy A Pair, Give A Pair” program.  Life in focus is soooo much better!

[image courtesy of Warby Parker]

So Fresh & So Clean!

I survived the 3-Day BluePrint Cleanse!

Do I feel lighter? Yes, actually I do.  Was it worth it? Probably.  Would I do it again? Too soon to tell.  So what exactly is the BluePrint Cleanse and why did I do it? According to the website, the BluePrint Cleanse is “a user-friendly system of cleansing set up to be practical for all nutritional lifestyles, from the most austere of raw food acolytes to the burger-and-red-wine crowd looking to periodically offset the damages of their indulgence.” Right, let’s back up.  What exactly is a cleanse? You’ve heard of the Master Cleanse that folks like Beyonce have done, but what is it really?

According to wiseGeek, “[a] cleanse is a health regimen designed to remove toxins from the body. Some cleanses target the entire body, while other focus on specific organs such as the liver, kidneys, or skin. In most cases, a cleanse requires a temporary radical change of diet, although some cleanses are designed to help people transition to a healthier diet. Many proponents of natural health engage in regular body cleanses to improve their health and treat underlying medical issues. Cleanses are also used as a weight loss tool in some communities, while others engage in body cleanses as a spiritual activity.”

How It All Started

My friend Karla and her husband do a cleanse per quarter.  I know, some people just put us all to shame! We hung out with them this past Spring a few days after they’d completed their 2Q cleanse. They were happy, glowing and singing the virtues of the experience.  Did I mention, they do the BPC for 2 weeks!  Yes, two whole weeks with nothing but fruit  and vegetable juices . . . We were intrigued.  It’s been a wonderful year; we’ve eaten a lot of fantastic meals and have indulged in one too many cocktails. Plus, we were on our way to Italy where we knew we’d be eating lots and lots of really really good food that’s not necessairly really really good for you.  We expressed interest.  Joked that maybe we should do a cleanse when we get back from Italy. Lo and behold a few weeks later, our dear friends sent us a few BPC gift certificates.  We thanked them and went merrily to Italy where we ate and ate and ate some more. (I’m not even mentioning the amount of vino consumed on that trip!).

Upon our return, we decided to do the BPC.  I wanted to do the 1-Day cleanse to try it out.  My husband, TC, said if we’re going to do it, we should just do it.  So, we decided to up the ante and do the 3-Day cleanse. How to find 3 whole days with no travel or dinner plans to interrupt this tight juice regimen? Good question! Oh, and did I forget to mention that you have to prepare for about 4 days beforehand? Yup, the lovely ladies at BPC send you an email telling to it’s 4 days to BPC-Day and you should start to cut back on all the bad things you love — you know caffeine, sugar, meat and really try to maintain a raw diet consisting of fruits and vegetables.  Seriously??!? Come on.  Originally, we were going to do the cleanse over Fourth of July weekend and then better offers and common sense prevailed. From there, we took our gluttonus selves on to South Carolina where we did our best to eat our way through Charleston, Seabrook and Kiawah Islands.   Stomachs bulging and clothes not fitting quite right, we decided BPC was on and poppin’ in August.

The 4-Day prep beforehand?  We didn’t do so well. A good friend was visiting from LA and of course we had to go out to a really nice dinner to catch up!  And then the night before BPC-Day we had dinner plans with friends we truly enjoy, but rarely get to see.  We I tried to be good. I ate vegetarian that night and only had 1.5 cocktails and maybe a glass of wine (of course alcohol prior to the detox is a big NO-NO).  Well, I got violently ill and had to be spirited away from the restaurant. So, for the BPC start date was pushed back a day.

The Cleanse

My dear husband, while feeling a little wobbly, started the cleanse the next am.  He was chipper. “Juice number 1 is good!” he said.  I was up under the bed from a bad bout of food poisoning, so I smiled wanly and off he went to work with his BPC thermal pouch and Juices 2, 3 and 4.  Home he came grouchy, hungry and generally just out of sorts. I was vertical again (just barely) and was gingerly eating a salad.  He drank Juice number 5 and while it staved off the hunger, it wasn’t a satisfactory Friday night dinner.  One of his underlings told him he should’ve done the cleanse during the week so that he could keep his mind off of food while working. But we were following the guidelines on the BPC website which recommends that you do your first cleanse over a weekend.

I woke up feeling much better on Saturday, so I started the BPC that morning.  Juice number 1 was pretty good – it’s green, flavorful.  Not a latte and a bagel good, but I survived.  By Juice number 3 I didn’t care how good they were, I was HUNGRY!  I drank my juices like clockwork every 2 hours on Day 1. Suffice it to say, I was a HOT MESS on Day 1.  I don’t think it had so much to do with BPC as much as it had to do that I had not properly prepared (I basically had no food 2 days beforehand – violently ill on Thursday, remember?). Had to miss a dear friend’s dance performance and another friend’s karaoke birthday party Saturday night (I’m a ham, I love a good round of karaoke); I just took my pitiful hungry self to bed.  Sunday was better, I wasn’t as hungry but I was hungry.  I had visions of enchiladas, hamburgers and french fries dancing in my head! By Monday, I was just ready for the cleanse to be over. Especially since TC had finished on Sunday night.  I did workout on Monday and while I probably expelled more toxins than I ever have while working out, it was a good workout.  I didn’t feel weak from lack of sustenance. However, midnight couldn’t get here fast enough for me.

Post-Mortem?

I’m glad I did it.  I wanted to cheat, we were standing in the grocery store holding low sodium vegetable stock Sunday evening (BPC allows you to eat a few things if you absolutely must) but I felt like a wuss so I left it right on the shelf and went home and drank my good but unsatisfying juice.

I now know what everyone’s been raving about.  I honestly do feel lighter and I think I lost a few pounds which is never a bad thing for UFDCA. Just as you “ease” into the cleanse, you “ease” out of it. First day off of BCP, fruits.  Second day, veggies.  Third day, slowly add in those things you know you should do in moderation – caffeine, meat, spices, etc.  Interestingly, I wasn’t interested in eating all the foods I’d been craving once the cleanse was over.  Rather the opposite, the cleanse has inspired me to keep my cleaned out system somewhat clean.  Caffine was rotated back in immediately, but I have taken things slow and I’ve really been trying to think about what I eat and why.  I’ve been using a calorie counter, LoseIt, which forces me to pay attention to my daily caloric intake and keep myself honest.

So, what say you?  Would you do a 3-day cleanse?

Une Femme d’Un Certain Age

On Facebook the other day, a childhood friend posted that she was excited to see The Spinners in concert. Now, if you don’t know who The Spinners are you may not be Une Femme d’Un Certain Age.  But, if you love the song Rubber Band Man by The Spinners, nine times out of ten you are an UFDCA.  What I love about Michelle’s FB post is that she owned it – she put it right out there and said, “Indication that I’ve reached the phase of my life where I’m probably considered une femme d’un certain age— I’m SOOOO excited to see The Spinners in concert tonight!”

There’s been soooo much talk lately about 50 being the new 30 and 40 is the new 20 – it was just nice to see someone joyously state that she’s not 28 and she’s perfectly happy about her stage in life.  For those of you who are 28, ENJOY it!  There are things about being 28 that I miss dearly, but I love where I am right now. Yes, like Michelle, I am probably at the age where some consider me to be une femme d’un certain age.  I like to think that like her, I wear it well . . . but I do have moments in the dressing room where I have to ask myself if a particular outfit is appropriate for someone my age – ladies, just because you can rock it doesn’t mean you should …… Depending on how you look at it, living in New York can either make it easy to forget your age or be a constant reminder of it. I live in the world of the former (foolish though it may be) and truly believe that age is just a number; it’s all about your mindset.  Some of the hottest women on the planet are women of a certain age . . . Halle Berry, Sheryl Crow, Jennifer Anniston . . . um, need I say more? What say you?



[image courtesy of MakingThingsHappen]

As The Body Changes . . .

I used to call them blondies, but alas no more.  They’ve taken root and taken over. Initially, I vowed not to become a slave to hair color.  That worked for almost a year. I’d get my hair colored if I had an event coming up and wanted to brighten up my face a little bit.  Then a few months ago, reality sunk in.  Now for those of you who’ve been high-lighting and dying to achieve the perfect shade of natural blond, you know the commitment I’m talking about.  And for my friends in the 35 and over club, some of you know may know what I’m referring to as well.  It’s a war waged by Mother Nature herself.  I wanted to be one of those women with a thick head of beautiful silvery gray hair when my time came. Well, the time came a little sooner than I anticipated and I’m not ready!  So, I’ve succumbed.  What about you? I hate to admit it, but “To Dye or Not to Dye?” is no longer the question for me . . . What say you?

[image courtesy of L'Oreal]

As The Body Changes . . .

Thanks for the reminder Karl . . . I’ll keep this in mind the next time I get a hankerin’ for a fish sandwich and fries from Mickey D’s.

[photo courtesy of Skinnification]

As The Body Changes

I don’t know about you, but I’ve been lucky enough to have a pretty good relationship with most of my doctors. Maybe it’s because I’m the child of a physician or maybe it’s because I’m a little anal or, as my friend Karla would say, maybe it’s because I’m a nice person? Anyway . . . last week, after a routine visit to my internist, I was slapped into reality.  It made me question what I’ve been holding quite dear – Is 40 really the new 30? Dr. Glass, my internist, doesn’t seem to think so.  And after my quarterly visit to her office, the stark reality that “40 is the new 30″ is really just a slogan to make the vainglorious ok with their vanity hit home.  Yes, I admit it, I’m a tad bit vain.  And if you’re honest with yourself, you probably are too.

While I’m seemingly the picture of perfect health, Dr. Glass made it clear that if I continue to race through life the way I did when I was 25, I’m going to fall apart sooner rather than later.  Her wake-up call made one thing certain in my world – in order to do all the stuff I need to do to maintain the” 40 is the new 30″ thing, I’m going to have to get up a couple of hours earlier.

I love sleep.  I hate alarm clocks.  I’m a night person.  Ms. Mary Sunshine in the am? Wrong gal, not me (my husband can attest to that).  I’m gulity of sleeping to the last possible minute and then rushing around like a chicken with it’s head cut off in the morning trying to get to the gym, an appointment or even to my desk to get my day started.  Extra sleep means I skimp on things like eating a nutritious breakfast, taking my vitamins regularly or just simply easing into my day.  To add insult to injury, I’d just attended the Ladies Who Launch conference where there was a panel on this very topic called “Stamina for Success”. I listened, but I didn’t take their words and advice to heart. However, after a doctor’s appointment where I was told:

  • I stare at the computer screen too long and I’m drying my eyes out (drops were prescribed);
  • I type too much and am going to give myself arthritis if I don’t figure out a way to minimize my computer time;
  • I sit still in the same position for too long (see arthritis above);
  • I’ve worked through one too many lunches and it’s impacting my body’s hydration and nuturional balance;
  • My calorie burning workouts will lead to arthritis without proper stretching before and after; and
  • My inconsistent vitamin intake and lack of proper daily hydration will lead to a deterioration of my overall health in the long run -

I came to a decision. I’m going to have to do two things to get it together: go to bed at a decent hour and get an earlier start to my day.  I’ve done ok so far, but it’s only been 5 days. You gotta start somewhere, right? Do you think I should’ve told Dr. Glass about my addiction to 5 inch heels? I mean we’re close, but we’re not that close.

[image from cosmosmagazine]

As The Body Changes …

I had a mini-midlife crisis a few weeks ago.  My friend Shameeka, also known as The Broke Socialite, is kind enough to call these little trip-ups 1st world problems and she’s right.  But, when you’re in the middle of a crisis, no matter how ridiculous, it can take on monumental proportions.

My crisis arose when after 2 months of working out 4 to 5 times a week, I had not lost the weight I put on after being laid up for 3.5 months from a skiing accident.  Now normally, this wouldn’t be that big a deal, but none of my clothes were fitting properly.  Even worse, I was getting ready to take a great vacation to Hawaii (yes, I said at the outset this was a 1st world problem!) for a close friend’s black tie wedding.  I’d made progress, but to be honest I still have another 2 months or so at this pace to get back to where I was.  My friend Meghan kindly told me to stop beating myself up; she said, “Kalyn, you’re being too hard on yourself!  It took you 3.5 months to put the weight on and lose the toning, so it’d at least take that long to get back to where you were.”  Great logic.  I took her words to heart and let it go. Until.

Until, I got ready to start thinking about packing for my trip.  I’d bought a dress in Paris that I knew I’d need to slim down a bit for, but I just assumed my body would do what my mind wanted! Bad assumption, once you step one foot over that invisible line (age, pregnancy, illness, stress, happiness, injury, depression – there are all sorts of things that can cause weight gain or loss).  No big deal I thought, I have a number of black tie dresses, I’ll just shop in my closet!

So, I started shopping in my closet and trying dresses on the week before we left. None of my f@+#’ing dresses fit! Depressing. I was up until 4 am scouring the internet for dresses.  Although this is a dilemma I’ve often had the good fortune to help clients with, it’s not one I’ve ever found myself in before.  I’m not good in these situations.  So what did I do?  I called in a professional who guided me by the hand just the way I do with my own clients.  I’m not a last minute person, waiting until the last minute stresses me out; I’m usually very well planned out in advance (hence my purchase in Paris). The Stylist needed a Stylist?  Hey, a girl’s gotta do what a girl’s gotta do!  Needless to say, I found a beautiful dress, I felt like a million bucks in it and my husband loved it on me.

But, trust me there’s more to this story … Stay tuned for more As The Body Changes adventures.

Have you had an As The Body Changes adventure?  Do tell!

[image source unknown]