About the double P

The Purple Penguin is a collection of my thoughts and possibly some writings. I tagged it with the adult content warning so I wouldn't have to worry about my language. If you are easily offended I would read with caution, I will probably end up saying something that will be taken the wrong way. Feel free to discuss or challenge my comments. I hope you enjoy your visit to The Purple Penguin!

Saturday, June 12, 2010

Fat girls can do it too!

I drug myself out of bed at eight on a Saturday morning to attend a special session my gym was having that they dubbed the "Cardio Party". It was 60 minutes of high impact aerobics and 30 minutes of an ab workout. It was so much fun! And believe it or not, I kept up really well with all the skinny folks in there! I was probably one of the heaviest woment there, if not the heaviest. The owner was one of the ladies running the workout and she said she was really proud of me for haning in there so well. Some of the jumpy moves were a little beyond me, but I stuck to their motto of the work out and "just kept moving"! I got my mom to come along with me, and when she looked close to wanting to give up, I would just give her a good natured picking on by asking her was she really going to let the fat girl run rings around her? :) I'm really proud of both of us for making it! I'm a fairly clutzy person, so the fact that I was getting the little routines down so well was a point of pride for me. It was a lot of fun, maybe I'll start taking more group classes now! See- fat girls CAN kick butt out there!

Wednesday, June 9, 2010


I took a test this morning for a position at my local airport to be a TSA screener. You know, those annoying people who run all your carry on bags through the x-ray machine. I felt awesome about the first part of the test, it majorily played to my strengths, and I flew through it. The second part, not so much. I didn't have much hope for it. So much to my surprise, I get home and there's an email with a contingent job offer. Which basically means that they are going to proceed further with the hiring process, not that I definitely have the job yet. Great news.

This morning, about an hour before I have to leave to take the test, my dad calls me and tells me that my stepmom's office is looking to hire someone in their mortgage fulfillment department. Sounds fancy, its basically data entry, which is along the lines of what I've really been looking for. He tells me I need to job on their website and fill out the application immediately, which I just manage to pull off before I had to leave. It got a little nerve wracking there at the end, but I just squeaked by.

Long story short, I return a message from my stepmom when I get home, and she told me that they have gotten the application from HR and they want me to come in and talk to them, and of course I have to do all the drug test stuff, but in her words, she's 99% sure the job is mine.

I want to be excited, and I am, but I'm also keeping my head level, because I've been this close before, only to not get an offer. I feel like I'm practically vibrating with anticipation. I've been out of work for seven months-the longest in my adult life. And of course, since I've been strongly recommended by my stepmom who has a sterling reputation at this company, there's also going to be the pressure to not mess up.

I'm not totally sure how my family actually percieves me, most of the time I think that they think I'm a walking joke who's not taking life seriously, but they've also never seen me at work. I don't care how menial the job I've done is, I've always worked hard and treated it with honesty, hard work, and respect. And I expressed this to my stepmom today. She really touched me, though, when she told me once I get through this and the job is actually mine, she would give me the money I need to go shopping and get a proper, well fitting business wardrobe. Apparently this department is more of the business side of business casual. This is a job my brother actually used to kick off his career at this same company, and he wore ties and jackets or sweaters everyday. And as much as we all hate the superficial-ness of it, a good appearance at work can do nothing but help you further your standing with the company.

Basically, this is the job I've wanted for a long, long time now. Its got normal hours, I can eventually go anywhere I want to from this position with hard work, and its got HEALTH INSURANCE, which I haven't had in probably five or six years at least. I want this so badly it hurts. The rest of this day is probably going to be the longest one in my life!! Which is why the title of this blog is what it is, it is how I am feeling right now. I'm so hopeful that I do indeed have this job, I'm scared its going to fall through, and I'm nervous about the interview tomorrow. I'm also very very excited for this opportunity. I'm also touched by some of the things my stepmom was saying to me, about how I've never really had a job that's given me the opportunity to grow and blossom, and that this is the chance that can make all the difference in my life to open up doors and allow me to come into my own. Yeah, I've been staving off tears all afternoon. I'll have myself a good cry when the job is in my hands.

Monday, June 7, 2010


I joined a 12 week summer program at my gym they dubbed The Biggest Loser Challenge. I'm on a team with my trainer and 16 other ladies. I'm really looking forward to it for several different reasons. The first being it gets me more personally involved in my work out experience by allowing me to make some friends there. So instead of going in, being in my own little mp3 player world and running back out, I'll actually have people there I know now. These are also people that will provide extra encouragement for those times I have when I'm just "not feeling it". I don't have too many of those, but its nice to have connections. I get a little lonely being at home alone all day, and still being alone when I go out to the gym.

The second reason I'm excited about this is just the plain old spirit of competetion. Competetion brings out the best in me sometimes, and it doesn't hurt that there's a cash prize at the end of this whole thing. Its fun to be a part of something that pushes you while still maintaining a good, positive attitude for all involved.

Another reason is that there are all kinds of special classes and seminars they've arranged just for those of us who are participating. I soak up new knowledge in general, but information about how my body works and uses the foods I give it are especially interesting to me since I've started this journey. The more I learn about it, the more empowered I feel. I feel such a passion for it I've event entertained thoughts about maybe going back to school for nutrition and becoming a dietition or a nutritionist or something along those lines.

I'm just excited to get to participate. After all, like I've said before, until I manage to cajole someone into hiring me, my job is to take care of myself better and get healthy! And its nice to have more support in doing so.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

The Jiggling Jogger Saga-Day One

Well.... today was.... interesting.... I only made it one of four interval cycles, and the speeds were a bit slower than program outlines, but I made the attempt, at least. The most important thing I learned from today: Do my elipitical machine AFTER I jog. I believe that might have been my fatal error. I'm seriously considering just reserving the elipitical for the days I don't jog, since my bit of paper recommends not doing the program everyday, rather, three days a week spaced out. I'll get the bugs ironed out. I adamently refuse to let this one bad go scare me off of giving this an honest attempt.

This is my rationale: If, on the elipitical, I can "run" a mile in a quarter in 10 minutes, I am perfectly capable of making the transition to the treadmill. I recognize there are vast differences between the two machines, but with this walk four minutes/run one, I should be able to make the switch.

So, just so I can see it in words in front of me, this means that my week at the gym should look like three days of jogging intervals interspersed with three days of my weight circuit and the elipitical. Sounds good to me. Its really not all that different from what I was already doing, I'm actually just trading in the stationary bike for a treadmill. The bike killed my knees!

In other jiggley news, I booked my next weigh and measure in with my trainer at the gym for next Tuesday! Now I'll get to see if my scale is lying to me, or if I really have lost weight this month!

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

The Fat Little Girl

The fat little girl is what I have started calling the "I don't care" mode I sometimes fall into. I'll be following a plan, and seeing some success with it and I just start sabotaging myself for no apparent reason. Its almost like I'm scared of achieving my goals. Stupid, I know, but I don't know why it happens. I guess the fat little girl in me is selfish, lazy and comfortable and wants to stay that way.

I bring this up because the fat little girl went into attack mode this past week. I'd been doing really well at the gym and gotten a little cocky because I wasn't really following a strict diet, or any sort of eating plan at all, really, and I had managed to drop eight pounds. So I just started plowing my way through whatever junk I could get my grubby little hands on. So of course I hop on the scale this morning and its telling me that all eight pounds are back. She also talked me out of going to the gym now, which I'm really regretting since I won't be able to go tomorrow, and probably Friday, as well. I also didn't push myself quite to where I wanted at the gym today. But I went, so I'll give myself that.

The strange thing about sabotaging myself, is I really enjoy eating healthy. When I'm really on a roll, I don't even crave the bad stuff. I keep my sugar levels balanced with fruit and carbs, so I don't have crashes that make me run to the fridge for junk, and I have tons of energy. I sleep better, and just in general feel better. When I'm dumping the junk in my system, I really can feel the difference. I'm sluggish and sleepy. I get headaches from sudden drops in my blood sugar. My tummy gets upset, and on and on.

So I'm definitely going to buckle back down on myself. I'm not going to be a zealot or anything like that, but I've got to stop letting the fat little girl win arguments, otherwise all the ass kicking I do to myself in the gym isn't going to make the slightest bit of difference. Besides, I'm really proud of myself when I accomplish my day to day objectives, which keeps me in plesant moods and makes it much nicer for Grady to be around me! And everyone else!

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Life, the Universe, and Everything

I haven't written in a while, which is a bad habit that tends to happen with journal type things that I start. I've never been able to keep one. I get wrapped up in life and just let it fall to the back of the to do pile, and before I know it, I've forgotten about it!

In some ways there's been a lot going on, and in others, nothing much at all.

I still haven't managed to find a job, even a cruddy retail job. So I'm still sitting around at home on my duff not accomplishing much. Lots of daytime TV watching and video game playing. Oh yeah, and cooking and cleaning. *YAWN* I know.

I've fallen away from FitDay a bit. FitDay is a website that I was using to keep track of calories and exercise to help me faciliate my weight loss. I was doing ok with. My favorite part of it was balancing my daily nutritional needs and seeing solely with food that it is possible to feed your body everything it needs and not have to have vitamins or supplements. I've really discovered a passion for doing things naturally. I've never been much of a pill taker, I just didn't think about it. But it makes me happy to know that I HAVE to have them. I've been thinking a lot about going back to school, maybe getting a new degree, and being a nutritionist is definitely something I've started looking into.

I deviate. I kind of fell out of the habit of FitDay when I was having so many problems finding exercise I could do at home that didn't piss off the gimpy ankle, espcecially in February when there was constantly snow on the ground. So I completely lost my momentum. I stopped posting on the forums and tracking my foods. Needless to say I not only gained back the four or five pounds that I had managed to lose, but I'd also hit an all time high in my weight. I'll discuss that in a few. I feel kind of guilty about just abandoning the whole thing, and I really need to get back into it so I can make sure that I'm covering my needs and not going hog wild on the calories.

My biggest thing is that I want to have a healthy relationship with food. I don't want to spend my entire life obsessing about what goes in my mouth. I think that's part of why I've taken a hiatus from FitDay. I felt like I was getting fanatical about it. I don't want to micromanage myself to the extent that I was getting. Its one thing to be conscience about what you're putting into yourself, its entirely another to plan my day down to the last little calorie and not have any flexibility. Life is about give and take. Balance. And I felt the OCD meter going way over into the deep end.

I think my most exciting devolpment is my mom's gift to me of spotting me the monthly fee for a gym until I'm working again. This happened two weeks ago. There's a very small chain (as in two locations) called Victory Lady Fitness here in Richmond. Its nice because its women only, and I'm totally not the fattest person there, so its very unintimidating to be there. And its quickly becomming my home away from home. I spend anywhere from one to two hours a day there. One of the other completely awesome things about this gym is they have trainers there that you can utilize at any time free of cost. In fact, your first couple of weeks you meet with your trainer about three times. And I love the girl they put me with. Her name is Caitlin and she's a few years younger than I am, but we hit it off right off the bat. I could totally be friends with her in the "real world". And she's never made me feel akward about my size and just exudes complete confidence that I can do anything in there. Even when I had to get on the scale- *EEK!!!* Which brings me to the point of my being at an all time high in weight. 348!!! Holy shit, how did that happen???? I don't feel that big. I don't feel like I look that big. I watch this show called Ruby sometimes, and she weighs 318 now, and she looks much much bigger than me. Its a strange feeling. Knowing I weight a number that huge. But I've really been giving it my all at the gym. And I LOVE it!! I guess I just had to get to the right place in my life. My parents couldn't force me to work out, no matter how many articles they shoved down my throat about the years I was shaving off my life being fat. I couldn't make myself eat right and work out, no matter how sick of being the fat girl I was. I had to be ready.

Now, I don't know how off my scale is from the one at the gym, but I got on mine this morning when I got back from exercising, and its down eight pounds- it says 340! That's so exciting. Once a month Caitlin will weigh me, and their scale does body fat, too, and measure me. I'm more exicted to see the body fat and inches numbers come down. I do a weight routine every other day, so I know my weight number will be a little funky for a bit because I'll be building muscle, but the measurements and my clothes will not lie!!

A cardio only day for me starts with a five minute walk on the treadmill to warm up, then stretching. Then I tackle the elipitical, which is good for me, because right now the gimpy foot can't take the impact of running on a treadmill right now. My secret goal is to one day be a runner. I think one of the biggest accomplishments I can have for myself is to one day get on that treadmill and run a mile without slowing down or stopping. Anyway. That elipitical is my nemesis. I could do about two minutes on it last week. I've been slowly increasing that number every three or four days, and today I hit five minutes!! And the thing told me that I went a half mile in that five minutes. That means I can run a half mile in five minutes- sweet! I know it would be harder on a treadmill, but I'll take that victory! Once I do my time on the elipitical I move over to the exercise bike for 25 minutes, giving me a full half hour of intense cardio. And I kick my own ass on that bike. It is the most under estimated piece of equipment in that place. I get an awesome workout on that thing! And on my weight days I have a weight circuit that I do in between stretching and cardio. Once I finish up I go back and do a second round of stretching.

I am just adoring every bit of my time at the gym. I get competetive with myself and try and up the ante, and I really feel like I'm accomplishing something everyday. Something I haven't felt in a while. I haven't been buckling down on my eating quite yet, but at the same time, the biggest thing I would really need to change is portion size at dinner. I'm hungry all the time now, I guess my body is adjusting to the new influx of exercise, so I kind of just eat when I'm hungry at this point. But never fear! Most of my daytime eating revolves around fruit, veg, yogurt and very healthy cereal.

I feel like until I have a job, my job is to take care of myself, and I want to do that job to the best of my ability!

Monday, January 11, 2010


So its basically been a month since I started on two sepatate ventures in my life. I signed up with a new temp agency, and I started changing my eating habits. I'd like to say there's been progress on both, but so far the best I can report is a little with one, and a possible maybe with the other.

First of all, the temp agency. This is the possible maybe. I talked to my rep today, there's been a big holdup with the background checking people, but she did report there were a couple of assignments that she'd like to try and get me on that start next week. Let's hope that appeases boyfriend tonight. We had a little bit of a blowout Saturday night about my lack of employment. He's right in some things, he really doesn't care what I'm doing, to him its a forgien concept to not have some source of income. So he's just pushing me to find something, anything. And I appreciate that money's getting tight. I'm not just sitting here thinking everything's roses and like I'm getting away with not having a job. Quite the contrary, I'm so stressed out its affecting everything, my sleep, certain schedules in my body, my level of bitchiness, my self esteem. Everything. What I can't make him understand is just how desperately I do not want to go back to retail. I don't look down on the profession, I'm not someone who thinks that if you're jockeying a cash register as an adult you're not trying hard enough. Its just not for me. I hate the hours, not having weekends, and in some cases holidays. The pay is shitty, the majority of customers even shittier. And my body simply can't handle it like it used to. It aggrevates my mystery ailment to the point where even after I get off my feet I'm still in agony. So I'm trying to avoid it like the plague itself. I have to call my rep first thing tomorrow and see what she's got for me. So that's my first hope, that she has some good news for me. If not, I guess here I come worst nightmare. In a lot of ways I feel like I'm getting ready to go to jail when I think about that possibility looming over my head. I'm just trying to stay positive and believe its all going to work out tomorrow. We're going to hope that if I believe hard enough all those positive vibes will affect the situation. My string of bad karma's got to end at some point, right?

My "diet" is the small changes part. I don't have my updated numbers, since tomorrow is measurement day. I don't really own a working scale, so I don't know how much weight I've lost. Last time I checked at a friend's house, it was about five pounds. So I measure myself every Tuesday, and I have the numerical evidence that I am losing some weight, even if the changes aren't obvious yet. I fill my tummy with lots of fresh fruits and veggies every day, and I'm trying to get better about exercise. My exercise today is running up and down three flights of stairs doing laundry! But I've seen anywhere from half an inch to and inch and a half come off of various parts of my body. With not double checking behind myself, I think the total to date is six or six and half inches. The hardest part is weekends, when we have no schedule, and the second is dinner. I try to make dinner as healthy as possible while still making something my very skinny boyfriend will enjoy. Most of the time that entails portion control on my part, adding veggies for myself separately that he won't eat and making him butter his veggies while I leave my plain. My two biggest guiding principles right now are calorie restriction and eating nutritionally balanced every day. I have found that I am quite capable of getting almost everything I need on a daily basis from my foods alone. And I'm excited to start working again so we can go to nicer grocery stores with have a much better selection of organic things.

I believe in making everything myself, and not relying on prepackaged diet foods. Sugar substitues are a thing of my past, and its not that whole "it causes cancer" crap that's been around for years now, its just learning what really does need sugar and what doesn't. The most valid thing I've read about sugar substitutes is that they can actually set you up for failure because they can potentially cause you to have a massive craving for the real thing, which leads to a binge. I have some concerns about diabetes, since it runs so rampantly, so I think I'll stick with the natural, complex sugars in fruit and fulfill my sweet needs that way. I'm surprised at how much of a happy camper I really am with all this change, and ninety percent of the time I don't feel like I'm being deprived of anything. Its nice. That would make my second hope that I'm strong enough to continue along this path to being a healthier person.

I will admit that I do very often right now feel overwhelmed and kind of depressed right now, mainly attributed to my job situation, but I battle everyday to face my life with hope and positive attitudes. I'm not overly successful with that, but  I try, and to me its better than just flat out giving in. I'm going to be a fighter with both gaining employment and losing weight. I don't want to just have big pretty statements, I want to make those statements a reality. Between the desire to make my situation better, action, and positive thinking, I should be able to accomplish these things. Or at least in the case of a job, do everything in my power to accomplish it, unfortunately, I can't really completely control that situation. And oh yes, there will be updates, so stay tuned!