No, I don’t want to buy your $5 per serving shake/meal replacement/smoothie/whatever you are selling.

Has anyone else noticed that everyone is becoming a representative of some sort of product lately? Skin care, food, kitchen supplies, make up, etc., but the most common thing I keep getting asked to buy and become a part of, is shakes. But the most common thing seems to be shakes and meal replacements, but for me, the answer is no. I get it, though. It is a REALLY tough economy right now and everyone is scrambling to find income and survive. And kudos to all the awesome people in my life that these things work for, who are on a journey of health and wellness and have created a business they love. But please understand, this is not for me. Here is why.

When I tell you I can’t afford it, I really can’t. When you say things like “you are worth the investment”, I appreciate it, and I know that that my health is important and worth a lot of effort an attention. But that doesn’t change my ability to afford it. I use my campus food bank, I budget like crazy, and there are still nights that I have gone to bed without dinner, simply because pay day was around the corner and I had no food because it all went to rent or another crucial bill. This is not the norm every night, though, so don’t worry. I still manage to eat healthy foods on a $100 or less budget per week, in Toronto, for two adult powerlifters with big appetites. We both have smoothies for breakfast that cost $1-2 per person. Mine packs about 40g protein, 10g fiber, 1 fruit, 1 vegetable, lots of fat and carbs, and an array of vitamins and minerals. Sometimes I even eat an orange or kiwi on the side which will up the vitamins and fiber too. These are dietary requirements that are specific to my needs, and meal replacements generally do not meet these needs. Also, I can’t have gluten, which is surprisingly in a lot of that stuff, and I choose not to eat much soy, because it is bad for, and aggravates, all of my weird bodily conditions.

When you say that if I join the business, it will help with my money problems, please understand that I am a full time university student with multiple part-time jobs that I enjoy- I barely have time to shower in a day, let alone participate in the constant social media presence involved in these things. I do enjoy social media, but not for posting every meal and workout I do in a day. And my part-time jobs are ones that are enhancing my life in some way, and I enjoy them.

When you say that I won’t have to step foot in the gym or cook dinners, because all workouts are done from home and dinners are a shake (for example), this does not sound appealing to me. I LOVE going to the gym and cooking. Mostly, I love eating home cooked meals. I do powerlifting, which requires a gym, unless you have your own gym, which would be incredible lol! When you say that I can get weights and modify the workouts to include them, the answer is no. I do powerlifting, it is not the same as getting some dumb bells and following a video.

So I ask that you understand that I have different interests than you, and that is ok. I am excited for you that have a business you love and are healthy and enjoy what you do. I also enjoy what I do, it just happens to be something different. I am so proud of you for working hard towards your health goals! I am also proud of myself. My goals are a little different, and that is also ok. I am looking to gain muscle mass and intense strength, which requires intense workouts at the gym and lots of calories consumed. Hence, low calorie shakes are not suited for me, and meals that cut calories are out of the question. My basal metabolic rate, which is just to maintain my body, muscle, organs, etc. at rest is a little over 1600 cal per day. Add in a workout that burns probably 700 cal AT LEAST, plus add in additional calories to create a surplus for muscle building…that is a lot of food.

So all in all, these shakes and meal replacements just do not suit my life, my goals, or my interests. They may suit yours, which again, is ok. Lets focus on encouraging one another to strive towards our goals, no matter what they are ūüôā

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Workout, Arena Fries, and Gratitude

I went to kickboxing for the first time since the spring. ¬†The drop-in group classes I go to don’t run from mid-May until September. They are on the campus of the Artist’s school, so no one is around to make it worth running the classes I guess. ¬†Wow. ¬†It was intense. ¬†But in a good way (not like that other class I posted about, haha). ¬†Normally, if I was doing weights, I would do it right before this class. ¬†I like to do weights with the Artist, it is just a fun thing to do together- and of course I like seeing him flex his muscles ūüėČ ¬†Occasionally, our schedules don’t match exactly, so I just do the weights after.

Big mistake.

I came home from kickboxing expecting to leave immediately for the gym. ¬†The Artist wasn’t home yet, and it was a little over an hour before he came home and we left. ¬†As you can imagine, waiting that long after intense kickboxing, was not a good idea. ¬†I crashed. ¬†If I used the momentum and went right away I would have been ok, but I didn’t, and was just exhausting. ¬†I thought, “I will just take it easy”. ¬†Ha! ¬†Even taking it easy made me feel like I could throw up. ¬†I have never felt so close to throwing up from exercise….ever. ¬†Actually, I very rarely feel even a hint of it.

So we lace up our shoes and head out. ¬†On the way there, I was thinking about parking…during weekdays meters are free after 6pm, and it was 6:30pm. ¬†However, there are limited spaces for that. ¬†Other parking is for permits only. ¬†We do not have a permit.

Me: Maybe all the meter spaces will be full, and we won’t be able to park, and just have to go home.

Artist: I hope that happens.

*We pull into the campus.

Artist: The spaces must be full, look at this, it is like a zoo in here.

Me: I don’t know, maybe they will all be open, with our luck.

Artist: They can’t be, I hope they’re not.

Me: (laughing)

Sure enough, there were 2 spaces open.  We park, and go in.  First stop- bench press.  By the way, the gym is packed, hot, sticky, and loud at this hour.  Ugh.

Me: (after 1 set) Soooo….home?

Artist: (laughing) Why are we here again?

Me: (laughing) I’m only half serious.

Artist: Lets just go home, and hit the drive-thru on the way.

Me: (laughing)

Artist: I will do one more set, but I may not be able to do 12 reps.

Me: Want me to spot you a little so you can do the full 12?

Artist: No, it’s not worth it. ¬†I just want to do this so I can go home and stuff my face.

Me: (laughing embarrassingly hard, people are staring)

We continue, and move through each exercise.  When we get home we have a protein shake, a shower, some dinner, and watch Arrested Development.

I am deliriously exhausted, so Buster is extra funny.

On the way home from the gym, the Artist was talking about how much he wants arena fries. ¬†For all of you from Creemore and the area, you know exactly what I am talking about. ¬†Fries from the Creemore arena are the best arena fries. ¬†Yes, other arenas have the crispy coated ones which are amazing, but all in all, I have always thought Creemore had the best fries. ¬†The Artist refers to arena fries as fries in the little box with the little wooden fork, with lots of ketchup from the big pump dispenser, and vinegar. ¬†I do not like ketchup, so for me, arena fries are with salt and vinegar, and of course the little box and wooden fork….or the skinny plastic red ones. ¬†There is also poutine. ¬†Creemore arena poutine is one of the best poutines. ¬†I love real cheese curds, but mozzarella is good too. ¬†What I am most picky about is that the gravy is “fake beef gravy”. ¬†Which means from a can or a powder, and not chicken gravy either. ¬†And of course, eaten with the little wooden fork. ¬†Now that I think of it, the Creemore arena has the best canteen ever. ¬†The best chicken fingers, fries, poutine, everything, are there. ¬†I always remember my parents working in there on Saturday mornings when I was skating, and making me a grilled cheese sandwich for breakfast- and paying for it ūüėČ ¬†And making it just the way I like it- white loaf of bread, plain butter, and 2 slices of Kraft singles. ¬†This is very specific, because I try to healthify it and choose cheaper items, such as garlic butter, whole wheat bread, “real” cheese or a blend of cheeses, etc. ¬†These options are all yummy, but sometimes, the mood just calls for the original.

So to any of my Creemore readers, if you have photos of “Creemore Arena Food”, I would love to have them to add to this post ūüôā

Now onto nice things we have done for eachother……I am making us dinner tonight, and helped the Artist get all of his errands done today (he hates doing paperwork stuff, making calls, etc…..but really, who actually likes it?). ¬†I went with him, helped him, and rubbed his back afterwards. ¬†The Artist told me how much he loves going through our photos because it makes him happy looking back on our lives, and how much fun we have together. ¬†We truly have had a great life together so far. ¬†When I told him I would make dinner for when he gets home, he said he never expects a dinner to be ready, so don’t worry if I don’t get to it, because I have my own things to do. ¬†And how he always appreciates me. ¬†When I am able, I do as much as I can in terms of cooking, cleaning, etc. especially when the Artist is super busy or has late classes. The fact that I never feel expected to do any of this, and always get showered with gratitude and affection afterwards, makes me not mind it all. ¬†And when I am super busy, in school, working or whatever, the Artist does the cooking and stuff.

So men, the secret to women is not to expect them to cook and clean, especially if they are home all day, because when they feel expected to do these things, it is a whole new ball game. ¬†This is how resentment is born. ¬†And it doesn’t matter whether or not you actually expect these things, if a woman feels expected to do certain things, then verbalize and show her that you don’t. ¬†And being appreciative of dinner, clean clothes, etc. and verbalizing this to them, makes all the difference. ¬†When the Artist takes 2 minutes to cuddle me from behind while I am cleaning up or doing dishes after dinner, whispers loving words and thank you’s in my ear, and we have a little 2 minute snuggle, it is so nice. ¬†Even though I know he appreciates it, hearing it, and him showing me his thankfulness, makes a big difference. ¬†I never feel like I am being taken for granted or expected to fulfil a certain role or duties. ¬†And even though he has a long night ahead of him writing a big assignment due in the morning, taking those 2 minutes to hug me from behind while I am cleaning up and tickle me or kiss me or whatever and thank me, makes a huge difference.

So, ladies, what do you think on this? ¬†I would love to hear comments ūüôā

The little things in life.

Happiness is contagious ‚̧