Marie Kondo That Sh*t

Who doesn’t want to be more organized? Have their space be controlled and not control you? Who doesn’t want to start the new year off on a better foot that isn’t in mess?

With New Year’s right around the corner, and a possible out of state move looming over my horizons; ‘cleaning up’ is a huge elephant sitting, not in my room but, on my chest!

I’m a clean individual, not the most organized-but I am definitely clean. I don’t leave dirty dishes with standing water in the sink, I mop on a regular basis, clean my fridge out, bathroom etc. But my downfall is organization (and if you ask my mom, its also that my clothes magically reproduce into multiple pieces.)

I was hitting the Pinterest boards and YouTube one day and stumbled upon Marie Kondo and her method of cleaning up. To be honest, you’d have to be living under a rock if you haven’t heard about this method (my own hubby sent me an article one day that he had even found! And he usually deep dives into This Old House articles on how to rewire a home.) And after my own experience, I highly recommend that whatever aspect of your life needs it – MARIE KONDO THAT SHIT! #KonMari

The Method:

I’m going to give you a brief, Jessica version of how I broke down this method but, I am going to link here a more in depth article that helped me!

So, she breaks down de-cluttering and organizing into 5 categories and you need to start with the first and go through the list. Its 1) clothing, 2) books, 3) papers, 4) komono (miscellaneous), and 5) sentimental items. You break it down to donate, keep, and throw out and you do two things: ask yourself if this sparks joy and thank the item for its service to you. Its weird at first, I will admit that-but trust me, it helps!

The list of categories also makes decision making faster and more efficient; by starting with objects such as clothes (which to most would be easy to get rid of) aids you to when you get to sentimental items. The idea that you start to understand that objects themselves are not the memories you keep and that you can keep those memories in your heart and not necessarily in your closet.

I laughed, and I cried…I cried a lot and writing about it now has me giggling. It’s a very freeing experience; you realize you’ve been carrying around a lot of crap and weight throughout life that you don’t need! There was an overwhelming relief that I felt just when I got rid of my clothes!! Let alone papers and books!

I didn’t follow the rules to a T-like folding my clothes the way she does. But, for the most part-starting the New Year with a little more physical and heart space-felt so damn good.

Give it a try…Zen yourself. Again, I wouldn’t suggest it if I hadn’t tried it and actually benefited from it. (Like no bullshit-I can’t get my husband to fold exactly like her and then when I try to do it, I just lose interest…)

Never any artful bullshit and forever yours,

Jess

10 Easy Things You Can Do Now for Self-Care

Legit…a photo of me being a stressed out introvert needing to recharge…

“Pardon my french, but Cameron is so tight, that if you stuck a piece of coal up his ass, and twisted, in two weeks you’d have a diamond.” – Ferris Bueller

If you’re anything like me, I’m like this 80% of normal times, but during the holidays-100% of the time. Between running errands, gift shopping on a budget, holiday parties, cooking, cleaning, wrapping like Buddy the Elf, acting like you are Buddy the Elf for friends and family….you’ll have diamonds coming out of your ass too! As much as I need those diamonds, I imagine its painful, so I’m attempting to nip this in the bud.

And just like the health and beauty magazines, the Good Morning America Show (or my fav Kelly and Ryan) and every blog out there, I’m going to tell you as well: self care is IMPORTANT! And, if you’re like me, I have some issues figuring out what exactly self-care is to me (I mean, I eat right and workout-like what more can I do?!) A lot more and its easy.

Here’s my 10 ways for you to get in some self care (starting now!):

  1. Take a 20 minute soak in the bath-put on some music (I listen to a background noise maker that legit puts you in Loki’s room while he writes and you sit by the fire *cue drooling*), throw in some epsom salt and a little bit of baking soda and you’re set. I love and suggest Dr. Teals Lavender Epsom salt and soak found here.
  2. Use towels right from the dryer. Like, who doesn’t like the smell and feel of fresh linens from the dryer- the Downy soft bear had it right bouncing around on those fluffy fresh sheets.
  3. Enjoy a cup of your favorite coffee or tea ~ bonus when you use the sound mixer of background noises and find yourself drinking coffee with the Avengers in Stark Tower (yeah-my nerd is showing. Find the mix here )
  4. Take time to journal all your thoughts. Even if they don’t make sense, nothing flows, grammar is wrong-you just write. It’s how you feel and there’s no wrong way to feel.
  5. Curl up with a good book. I get it, not everybody has the time-well make time! Set a timer for 20 minutes if you have! And one day, I’ll start a book club because its a secret passion of mine and I’ve been trying to read 3 books ea month.
  6. Treat yo self! Like Donna Meager from Parks and Rec~she knows where its at! Get yourself a mani and pedi!
  7. Cozy sweater time! Or even better, fuzzy socks! Get comfy, get warm, and get cozy so you can relax a bit. Two of my fav found here and here.
  8. Call up an old friend. There’s something comforting and personal in an actual conversation that isn’t through text or emails. And my old friend, she’s amazing and completely gets me. I always feel better when I’m validated, understood and connect with my human.
  9. Do a craft. There’s a fun, easy and surprisingly calming YouTube to try here . Just make something and have fun doing it! Use glitter too-that always helps.
  10. Make your space smell good. I have some favorite candles or you can burn incense, bake cookies (heaven knows that smells amazing!)

The whole point of self care, is doing something-anything-for yourself. The introvert in me needs to recharge and it’s honestly a healthy and key habit to have!

Just try it-especially the towel one.

No artful bullshit, and forever your introvert,

Jess

Gym Life

Taking a step back from health issues, I wanted to kind of spot light my gym life.

I like to call myself an ‘in-between’ athlete. I love CrossFit, but it tends to not like me and I can only afford a commercial gym membership. I was a bodybuilder but, due to being burnt out and health issues, I’m no longer doing that. I’ve found a hybrid program, but even that got frustrating because of limitations in a commercial gym.

What did I do?

I went back to my personal training roots and started programming for myself again. It’s a mix of functional and bodybuilding style workouts, I’m in and out in an hour (I used to live at the gym, and I ain’t got time for that) and I’m really just focusing on my health. Some days, I do a high intensity interval workout from home, most days I try to get in the gym, and some days I don’t make it at all (like last week-it was a no-go!) I’m here to say, that it is all ok; as long as you aren’t a member of the USA gymnastics team-you don’t need to feel guilty about how you fitness.

I train people online and lead a fitness lifestyle that is wayyyyy less candid than this blog: @Fitness_Funsized on Instagram). I do like to think I have a sense of humor that I share on there (and here) and inspire others…so my goals besides keep this blog alive, is to also share more workouts and grow my online training business. I honestly love helping others see what they can’t see in themselves and restoring or giving them confidence! I know how hard it can be, so, if I can help it makes me feel pretty good.

Honest talk-I quit/lost my job, wasn’t paid, decided to get back into owning a business, blog and generally take on the world all on Thanksgiving weekend. And this time of year, I”M AT MY WORST MENTALLY. I feel like I’m constantly battling the good fight of balancing holiday time between two families that live hours apart and doing whats best for me, all while staying on or under (yeah right) budget.

Sound familiar?

Having said that, I’m creating a 12 Days of Christmas Workout Program…”program” said loosely because, I just want to share and post a workout of the day for the 12 days before Christmas. The holidays are hard, and every blog post and article written by People and Time Magazine, will be on you about ‘Self Care” and “Self Love.” And yes-I will be on that trend too because I believe it wholeheartedly and this will be my contribution (and kind of a way I’m helping myself, no matter who follows).

Blog post laid bare: I’m trying to get back into the gym and get healthy, and if you want-come along with me and do some fun workouts and lets get through the holidays together!

No artful bullshit and forever yours,

Jess

PS still working on that sign off

Feeling Grinchy?

I don’t know about you, but the holidays (starting in Thanksgiving and ending in New Year’s) makes me a little…Grinchy.

I want to LOVE the holidays. I really do! As of late, and as I have begun to think about starting a family, I want to be a Who in Whoville and not the Grinch. Unfortunately, the Who in me hasn’t been able to surface for a long time.

Money issues, holiday planning, budget, family…those are just a few things that really get me. Christmas just seems more and more commercialized and money driven-‘get the man in your life this gadget $$$’ or ‘treat her to what she deserves $$’ buy this, buy that and prove your ‘love.’ Just doesn’t appeal to me.

Also, blending families. My family wants me to do this, his family wants us to do that-there just never seems to be enough time and one side always seems hurt. I have a lot of issues with control-and sometimes I feel like I get manipulated into things I don’t want to do and its a form of control. What a Grinch thing to think!!

So, this year I figured I really needed to do something different:

  1. Working out. I’m sticking to my workout plan and I’m not going to feel guilty for it. It’s for everyone’s own good anyways. Check my Instagram @Fitness_Funsized and follow along on the 12 Days of Christmas workouts for some quick, sweat inducing and endorphin releasing lifts!
  2. $$$ Spreadsheet $$$ with a budget in mind. I know what I need to spend, how much i have to spend, then I write who I spend for and what they are getting (with check marks on when they are done-cause who doesn’t love a good list with check marks?!) I’m usually wrenched with guilt when I last minute shop for my own family and fall short compared to my s/o’s family. Being organized and writing it down, holds me accountable.
  3. I won’t feel guilty for not meeting others expectations of gifts. I’ve asked around what people would like; if it fits the budget and it’s available-boom! easy. But, I won’t feel guilty for giving you a gift card to Amazon so that I know my money given to you is going towards something you really want.
  4. I’m an introvert and I’m going to take allotted time to recharge in between family get-togethers and food. (I did try this and it back fired for Thanksgiving-but, I didn’t communicate that to my s/o and was my fault.)
  5. This goes with #4 but, I can’t feel guilty about said time to recharge. It’s apart of my self-care and I’ll save that for another post on what all you can do for self care but, a 20 minute soak in the tub is high on that list!

I also plan to get my ass in my car and see all the lights on the mansions in a nearby neighborhood because that just sounds magical. I promise to not steal the lights, trees, and who-hash.

No artful bullshit and forever yours,

Jess

The Thyroidiest Thyroid

Hundreds of women out there suffer from hypo/hyper-thyroid problems, most don’t even know that they are! And no, you’re not likely to die from it, which may be why we don’t hear a whole lot about it. Or maybe we don’t hear too much about it because the current trend on Instagram in ‘Explants’ or SADD for the holidays.

Let me just say: Those are both legit things that happen to women and that I think other women need to know about.

Let me also say, knowing that some women will fight tooth and nail about their implants and I’m not touching that fight-I just want to put it out there I just think this topic is ‘on-trend’ and out there way too much on an overly sexed social forum. If you got em’ flaunt em’ and if you don’t want-take em’ out, whatever is your jam, its serious and I undertsand and you are validated.

Whew-now that I’ve covered my ass like all good introverts that really don’t like rocking the boat:

I have a hypothyroid, which means its not working. I won’t die from it (I’m not including thyroid cancer, y’all because that is a whole other thing), but it makes my life really hard at times. Let’s take a second to dissect the thyroid and what it really does:

Your thyroid is a butterfly-shaped gland in the front of the neck and it produces hormones that control the speed of your metabolism. It’s the system that helps the body use energy. Now anything that disrupts this system (hormone levels too high or too low) can create a wide range of symptoms.

And let me tell you, they range so much that normally you just think “man, I have a cold” or “I just need to catch up on sleep” or “I should lay off the donuts” (which, never-carbs are life!). Jokes aside, and yes donuts in moderation; symptoms can be a pain to decipher, which is why most people have no clue they have anything wrong.

The Symptoms: (Just a Few)

Hypo: enlarged thyroid, fatigue, feeling cold (all the time), lethargy, hair loss, rapid weight gain, slow heart rate, brittle nails, dry skin, high cholesterol, sexual dysfunction, irritability, irregular uterine bleeding.

Hyper: excessive sweating, unexpected weight loss, rapid heart beat, excessive hunger, nervousness and mood swings, heat intolerance, hair loss, diarrhea, insomnia, puffy eyes, irregular menstruation.

I’ve battled it for a long time, I first noticed around 24/25 that I was really having some mood issues and depression. I think this was around the time my mom was diagnosed (and later my aunt-her sister, and my grandma-her mother, also have). Fighting the genetic fight, I remember asking my doctor if it was at all a possibility. Long story short, it was my chiropractor who said “You may be in the ‘normal range’ but looking at your results, your on the lower end. You need to stay on top of it.”

Fast forward, I’m 32 and just now getting back on top of it.

I did it the wrong way too. I was bodybuilding (another post/another long ass story) and taking T3, and feeling phenomenal. I also rocked some great abs at age 28-30 and continued to take an non-prescribed T3/T4 (the hormones your thyroid needs to be making) and thought I was doing a damn god job at ‘staying on it.’

Boy, was I wrong.

I’m heading back to the lady doc today to try and square things away and also getting an appointment with a primary care (its been a while for that too *cough* 6 years). And before you judge, I was in the fitness industry, bodybuilding, eating clean, never getting sick (besides an annoying Ohio based sinus infection every year) and really over all, healthy!

This post-narrowed down and stripped bare: I wasn’t on top of my health. I’m not perfect. Looking good, doesn’t mean you are good. I’m hoping I put this out into the world and someone can connect to this story, tell me I’m not alone and that they too deal with all this obnoxious health crap. (Because I warned you, I wouldn’t be bs-ing my posts on ANY of this stuff).

I’ll keep you posted on the thyroid front-share what I learn and hopefully share the journey of healing what I I didn’t break-but didn’t help either.

Now, how do I sign off….

No artful bullshit,

Jess

The Year of the Introvert

Clever girl.

Don’t think that starting a blog in December of 2019 called, “The Year of the Introvert” isn’t lost on me.

I could definitely take this month to publish all my thoughts (lifestyle and health related, of course) and stop in January 2020 and pat myself on the back for achieving the year statement. Though clever, that’s not my intentions.

My name is Jess, I’ve started a website before (failed), a blog (failed), a company (failed), and many more ‘things’ the past two years and I’m here to finally talk about them. I’m not perfect, and I don’t want to post the bs that people post saying “I lost 5 lbs in 5 days and here’s how” or “my wardrobe under 25$” or “make $1000 from home doing nothing!”

I want to use this format, which-being an introvert and a INFJ (Meyers-Briggs test, look it up if you haven’t!) is my best format of expressing myself, to give you a bit of insight and maybe some inspiration, hopefully some laughs and a no bs blog on lifestyle and health.

I’ve been in the fitness industry since college (I’m 32 so I’ll let you do the math) and I’ve seen every trend, done every sport, tried every gadget and if I haven’t, I probably know some people that have. And in the lifestyle department-well, I’m new to it. So, as I learn, I’m hoping you can learn right along with me.

We know the health side (I’ll be opening up more about my own health-wins and struggles) later. But, lifestyle?? What the hell is that? Well its a sneak peek of my everyday life and interests that can range from cleaning, design, crafts, workouts, my dog Gus Gus (who is the best and I can’t wait to share him a little), my marriage, relationshits (yes I spelled that right) and relationships.

So, come along on the journey! And yes, it will be interesting to say the least and fingers crossed, it lasts more then a year!