In September of last year, I got sick. I’ve been sick ever since. I went to the doctor twice [once at school and once at home], got prescribed antibiotics twice, took the full amount of antibiotics, and… never got better. I’ve been congested for ten months and this past week I finally got an appointment with the ear, nose, and throat doctor.
After explaining my lingering congestion and misery, a CT scan of my head, and a very confused doctor on how I could have been this sick for this long and how antibiotics have yet to help, we still aren’t 100% positive on what is the matter with me.
One thing I know for sure: I am CONGESTED. Between the four pairs of sinuses that I have in my head, one single sinus was not completely filled with crap. My doctor showed me my CT and compared it to my mom’s [we thought we were having the same sinus problems… we were wrong] and the two are polar opposites.
My doctor declared that he could not give me a full diagnosis until my head had cleared up which will have to wait until Thanksgiving. He did, however, note that I have a partially deviated septum, which may be the cause for my inability to breathe out of my nose, I am a potential candidate for a sinuplasty [something us chronic sinusitis patients are told works miracles], and I was then prescribed three weeks of antibiotics and one week of steroids.
He then told me that when I return in November that one of two things would happen: he would be able to correctly diagnose my problem[s] because the lack of fluid in my sinuses would allow him to properly see inside my head, or, that I would be getting that sinuplasty whether I liked it or not so he could then 100% see what’s wrong inside of my head.
Well, I’m only on the third day of antibiotics and steroids and I already feel hundreds of times better. While I can’t breathe out of my nose yet, I can exhale out of my nose ad not need to blow my nose, I can breathe a lot better in general, I haven’t blown my nose in two days, and I have not felt out of breathe [something that’s been happening since I was in Spain] since the appointment.
Moral of the story today folks: when you get sinus infections every year [sometimes multiple times a year] and the most recent one doesn’t seem to go away, even with the help of many antibiotics, maybe you should schedule an ENT appointment sooner rather than later so your doc can get to the bottom of the issue ASAP.
Hi everyone + Happy August 1st! Today is the best day ever because CHAARG memberships are officially open!! I stayed up until 11 last night [I’m usually in bed by 9 since I wake up early] to get mine + something I’ve noticed is that some people are hesitant to buy a CHAARG membership // think CHAARG isn’t for them. So, from one ex-CHAARG skeptic to a current, here’s why you should join CHAARG [or at least give it a shot].
Flashback to last August when I got yet another notification from the Ohio University Class of 2020 facebook group from an organization trying to get more people to join. However, this org was different… it was CHAARG. CHAARG is a health + fitness organization that aims to liberate girls from the elliptical + show them that fitness can ++ should be fun by creating opportunities to help them ‘find their fit.’
I like working out, I thought, so I clicked on CHAARG’s website to dive deeper. Reading about Elisabeth [CHAARG’s founder] to Sarah Clem [the director of expansion], + the rest of CHAARG’s story I was sold. A group of like-minded women being fit, hanging out, + enjoying the college experience together is what everyone wants… right?
Well, I somehow ended up scrolling through the OU CHAARG hashtag on Instagram + immediately began feeling anxious. The girls in this hashtag did CrossFit, lifted in the boy’s section of the gym, had run marathons, + more + what had I done?? I did the stair stepper [when the elliptical got boring] + the gym machines with at home workout videos when I was too anxious to actually go to the gym.
What if I didn’t fit in with these girls? What if they hated me? What if I wasn’t ‘fit’ enough? About 100 more what if statements flooded my mind until I was so overwhelmed that I closed my computer. Maybe CHAARG wasn’t for me? I’d think it over, of course, + put it on my to-do list before I left for school “Buy CHAARG membership ?”
After going back to that same hashtag probably a dozen times, I caved about a week after school started + bought my first ever CHAARG membership. Once I received the Welcome Packet on the 1st of September my nerves really started to set in. Those what ifs started to hit me like a train again but I couldn’t back out. I paid $45 so I was going to be a member.
That next week was sample small groups [a small group meets once a week for the whole semester with the same group of people on the same day + time to workout, grab coffee, etc.] + I was terrified to go to one. So, naturally, I went to the last possible small group that I was free for. Friday morning at 8:15 am. The night before I texted that small group leader Rachel to let her know I’d be attending + we designated a spot in the gym to meet.
That next morning, bright + early I walked to the gym, probably shaking so hard people could’ve asked if I was cold in the late summer heat.
However, the second I stepped into the gym + saw Rachel [who was probs wearing avocado patterned leggings] I knew I was going to be okay. Rachel [+ everyone else in CHAARG] is so kind, caring, + so positive it’s hard to not love her. We did an arm workout
+ ran on the treadmill for a while as we talked about anything from school, CHAARG questions, family life, etc. until it was 915 + she had to get to class.
I went back to my room, showered, + forced myself to go to a ‘meet the exec’ event at Front Room Cafe an hour or so later to meet Leah + Megan, the then event coordinators. Once again, I was still nervous, much less nervous after I’d met Rachel, but nervous nonetheless. I walked into frontroom, + immediately noticed Leah from the OUCHAARG hashtag + walked over to her + the others at the table. Leah, Megan + I talked about the sameish things I talked about with Rachel: school, CHAARG, home, San Diego, etc. I told Leah that I had just come from Rachel’s sample small group + she said that Rachel had put in their groupme that she met the sweetest girl at her sample SG that morning [ME] + I almost fell on the floor from flattery if I’m being honest.
At this point, I was in CHAARG. That next Tuesday was the CHAARG Welcome Party [which I get to plan this year.. CRAZY] + guess what ?!? I was nervous as shit AGAIN! I walked into whatever building, into whatever room + sat down next to an actual human. I didn’t sit far in a corner + I didn’t make sure to leave TONS of space in between me + another person, but I sat next to a person.
That person happened to be Sydney, my now CHAARG bestie. Sydney + I also made small talk as usual and took the picture you see to your left. Ever since that night, Sydney + I have sat next to each other at every CHAARG event I’m forever grateful I stepped out of my comfort zone because I met her!
Now, as I share all of this + while it seems that all of my nerves were calmed… they weren’t. I went to every small group that semester except 1 [?] + every social that I didn’t have a class conflict for, yet I didn’t go to a single studio spotlight [we contact studios in our area to come + teach class for our members to help in finding their fit]. I was terrified I wasn’t fit enough to do System of Strength + Pound. That I still wouldn’t fit in + so… I never went. I made up the excuse that I had a class conflict or I would get my Eventbrite ticket + cancel it last minute [I didn’t know I wasn’t allowed to do that first semester… whoops].
My first semester, I applied to be CHAARG’s Treasurer [+ didn’t get it]. Naturally, I was pretty disheartened by it + I actually thought about not returning to CHAARG spring semester. I was angry that I hadn’t gotten the position + that I hadn’t gotten that life-changing or eye-opening CHAARG experience others had had… was CHAARG really not for me?
However, I knew I needed to try again. Just because CHAARG didn’t work out in my favor first semester didn’t mean I wasn’t going to give it another go. I bought my spring membership on Black Friday + made a promise to myself that I would go to EVERY SINGLE CHAARG event that I could because I was sad + upset that CHAARG wasn’t changing my life the way it changed everyone else’s + that’s just what I did.
Spring semester I realized one very crucial CHAARG fact that no one tells you: CHAARG can’t change your life if you don’t let it. I had to put in the effort with CHAARG in order to receive that life-changing experience in return
My first semester of OU sucked [I actually contemplated transferring again]. I only talked to my roommate, CHAARG girls but strictly at CHAARG events, + some work people. I didn’t eat. I only worked out during small group. I self-harmed time + time again for the first time in ages + I was all around not happy. It wasn’t OU’s fault but more so mine.
I was unhappy before OU so it’s no surprise I was still unhappy in Athens. I wanted CHAARG to change my life so dearly because I hated it but I wasn’t willing to put in the effort.
CHAARG changed my life 2nd semester because I made it do so. I went to every studio spotlight + found a love for Pound, Yoga + Zumba!! I went to every small group + social ++ I met so many kind + passionate people ++ I used CHAARG to my advantage so it did change my life.
I eat now. I workout now [for fun + not for a punishment]. I can walk in public without music or talking to someone on the phone. I can talk in front of people. But most importantly, I’m happy now.
CHAARG isn’t this scary thing that only people who do CrossFit or participate in bodybuilding comps can be in. CHAARG is a place for anyone + everyone who have a passion for mental, phyiscal + emotional fitness whether you’ve just started this journey today or 15 years ago.
Remember this: CHAARG can change your life, but only if you let it.
Happy Monday everyone! Friday was the last day of CHAARG’s summer fitness plan “CHAARG Bootycamp” and I had the opportunity to be involved with it this summer. I wanted to reflect on my experience in this fitplan as I gear up for another in October (which I get to help lead as an exec member) so why not do it here for the whole world to see?
I am and have always been very black or white. I either love you or can’t stand you (if I know you that is… if I don’t I can be indifferent), all in or all out, I work out every single day or not at all, etc. and that can be good and bad. With fitness plans, however, it’s usually pretty bad.
I’m not sure why I’m like this // how I can change this about me, but the day I take a day off (that isn’t already listed in the actual plan) I just stop with it completely. I feel like a failure even if I’m not (it’s one day, not every day haha) and can’t bring myself to get back in the swing of things.
I was doing SOOO good the first 2 weeks of the plan… and then I went to Ohio to visit some friends. While I was there I didn’t workout, I drank a lot, ate a lot, etc. and when I got home the last thing I wanted to do was workout, let alone make up the workouts I missed. So, I didn’t workout for a week-ish (seems pretty backward I know). Then I made up a few workouts, got overwhelmed, + took another break. I did, however, get back on track for the last week + did all 3 strength workouts but I still didn’t feel that great about not really finishing the fitplan, especially because I spent money on it.
I think this is mainly due to my planning, or lack thereof. The fitplan started the day after I returned from Florida so I didn’t really have time or energy to plan the next 6 weeks of my life when I had been in a car for 10 ish hours. I had one thing on my mind, sleep, and the last thing I wanted to think about was planning the next 6 weeks.
Due to this, I was off on the wrong foot to begin with and I did persevere through my unplanned workout routine for a week and a half but I desperately needed to and should have planned out my workouts. Until I have written down a time or carved it into my planner, nothing is going to happen and that’s exactly what I didn’t do. I knew this would happen and it did, so I can’t really be mad about it now. This is definitely my major takeaway from this fitplan going into my next. I need to spend a few hours of my life the days before the fitplan starts planning my workouts, my foods, etc. if I want to get it done. It’s not that fitplans don’t work // it’s that you don’t make yourself work + I know that in order to build muscle (I have the upper body strength of a newborn baby) I need to plan and stick to that plan to see the results I want.
I do want to share a positive thing about this fitplan! There was a 10 day meal plan included and it was so useful! I didn’t follow the meal plan but I did love trying new recipes that I’m definitely going to incorporate into my faily life!!
So, while this may seem like a “wow Alicia you suck” sort of post, it definitely helped me realize my faults + how I can improve them for the fall! I also will say that this week I am sort of starting fresh with these workouts and doing the ones I like the most so that I can say I did not waste my money!
Are you as black + white like me? Or is there gray area for you?
Hi everyone. It’s been over a year since I decided to make the transition from omnivore to vegetarian and about 2 months of being completely vegan.
Since I started cutting meat and dairy and any animal product in general out of life, I have definitely noticed changes in all aspects of myself. Since I get quite a few questions from people asking the benefits of going vegan, I decided to make depicting some of the things I have personally benefited from since making this life change.
I have more energy: Contrary to popular belief that going vegan makes you sluggish because of the lack of protein in your diet (eye roll) I have never had more energy. Prior to breaking my toe… I had been waking up at 5:40 each morning and going on an hour or so walk each day. It gave me a nice kick-start to my day and I sure as hell beat my mom and sister out of bed.
My skin has been clearer:I’m not saying that I have no pimples… because I’m a teenager who, with hormones, and forgetfulness, sometimes forgets to change her pillowcases every other week or wash her face after a workout, but I don’t break out as frequently or nearly as much as I did before going vegan.
I eat more but I weigh less:I used to count calories religiously as a younger teenager. I would still, despite my counting calories and vigorous fitness routines, not lose weight. Now, I eat a lot more (albeit I eat a lot more fruits, vegetables, and things to that nature) but I have lost weight/look slimmer with/without exercise.
I poop more:Bowel movements are never things people like to discuss but I mean, it’s sort of common sense. I eat more, thus the waste has to go somewhere. So… I poop more. I don’t really know if this is a benefit or anything but I feel it is good to know.
I have made friends: Since the vegan population is pretty slim, whenever someone mentions the term vegan or even vegetarian, every single plant-based person within a 5-mile radius comes running. I have met a ton of cool vegans who have not only helped me stay on track with veganism but have also passed some amazing recipes my way.
I am saving animals!: I love animals (I’m sure you all know I’m partial to goats and dogs). I love every animal ever. I also used to love goat’s milk. Why is it that I found it okay to abuse (I didn’t know I was abusing these goats at the time) one animal I love but have another animal I love cuddle next to me on the couch? After going vegan, I have saved so many animals (even though it doesn’t seem like it) by eating plant proteins, milking almonds and soy (that’s what my dad calls it) and by being cautious when buying clothes and beauty products. If that’s not reason enough, I don’t know what is.
There are so many more benefits and just random things (like the poop example) I have noticed since going vegan but I feel that these 6 are super important to share. If anyone is vegan or wants to go vegan please feel free to ask me more questions or let me know what you noticed after going plant-based!