Does anyone remember when I began to think about being healthier and what not? I’m not exactly sure when, but it was a few months ago. I was going to discuss something srs today but eh, it’s been a long day, and quite frankly, ceebs right now. So I’m going to discuss something slightly (more like entirely) out of character, health. Like, exercise and diet type health. Because, you know, before I got started, I was completely lost and hey, I most definitely would not call myself an expert, far FAR from it. As far as you could get in fact, however, if I can assist anyone to start doing something, well… that’s pretty good I’d say.
I started the change, hmm, probably like 2 and a half months ago now. It’s a slow process, that is for sure, especially if you’re literally starting from the beginning, like I did. I was extremely unfit. I never ever exercised, like ever. I find it immensely boring unfortunately, I really do wish I enjoyed it, it would make this whole thing a lot easier. For the last 11 or so weeks I have exercised every single day, and I have completely changed my eating habits. I no longer eat any white pasta, rice, bread (unless it’s a special occasion, like my birthday this Saturday) and I avoid potatoes and all the other main carbs. I’ve eaten pasta maybe three times, it was brown and a much smaller serving than I would usually eat. I still eat quite a lot, I can’t help it, I’ve always had a big appetite, but I eat very differently. For instance, for lunch, I used to eat a large bowl of white pasta or a bowl of white rice with curry and I always ate a shit load of cheese. Now I would eat a bowl of salad with some feta cheese and a piece of mock (vegetarian) chicken breast, or something like that. Considering I absolutely LOVE pasta and rice, the change wasn’t exactly that easy, but the longer you do it for, the less tempted you feel and I’ve learnt to enjoy vegetables a lot more. There is so much you can do with vegetables, it’s quite amazing.
I guess you have to find some sort of motivation to stick to a complete lifestyle change. For me it was mainly two things. One, I’ve always hated my body, well maybe not always. I didn’t really care as a child, but since about the age of 13, I just haven’t been happy with my appearance, ever. I’m only 5’0, carrying the extra weight and looking flabby when I saw myself in the mirror made me feel so stumpy. I just hated it and I’m still not entirely happy. I know this is probably more of a psychological issue, because I’m the smallest I’ve ever been at the moment, and I’m still not really satisfied. More so because I would like to look more toned I guess, but that takes a lot of hard work, which I realise and am willing to do work on now. Secondly, and perhaps most importantly, I wanted to be healthier and fitter. I think the second reason is why I stuck to my plan this time. I mean, I’ve hated my body for nine years now, and every single time I tried to do something about it, I gave up. I really wanted to be healthy this time though, I’m becoming a lot more conscious about what I put inside my body these days. Now when I look at cakes and sweets, I think twice about actually eating them. I think about what was used to create these products and whether I actually want that stuff inside of me. Considering I have hypochondria, the cause of my horrible long episode of anxiety from August 2011 till May this year, I thought trying to be healthier might help my mind feel more at ease about how vulnerable my body really is to illness. It does help, for me at least.
In terms of exercise, at the start, I started with 40 sit ups, 40 lunges, 40 squats and 15 minutes on a bike machine per day. I did that for about 2 weeks, then I moved up to 20 minutes on the bike. After 2 more weeks of that, I would do 80 sit ups, 40 lunges, 40 squats, 10 push ups and 30 minutes on the bike machine, every day. After about 4-5 weeks of this, I decided it was time to finally start jogging. So last week, my dad and I started jogging. I’ve been about 4 times now, in the days in between or when I can’t, I go back to my bike machine routine. My dad and I go out for about 30 – 40 minutes each time. Today, I jogged for 10 minutes straight without stopping I would still definitely consider myself a beginner, so I obviously can’t jog the full 30 minutes yet, I power walk in between sets of jogging. Jogging for a full half an hour is probably going to take a while, but at least I’m trying right?
It’s a little difficult to avoid carbs when you’re a vegetarian, but it’s not impossible! You just have to be creative, I’ve realised that you don’t need carbs, especially white pasta and rice. Besides, there are carbs in carrots and most vegetables and fruit, so I know I receive enough energy. I use a lot of Quorn products, they’re quite good I also eat a lot of lentils, chickpeas and so many different vegetables. My boyfriend and I also discovered a few other things during this food adventure. Below are a few of my favourites.
The sesame snaps are delicious, they are not the most low calorie snack you could eat, but man, I love them. Plus, considering I used to eat a massive triple chocolate muffin like every single day when I was 17, I figure this is a pretty decent replacement for my usual chocolate fix. Sometimes, I really do want to eat actual chocolate though, and the Atkins Endulge bar is great I wouldn’t recommend eating it every single day, but it’s pretty decent. It’s not as good as Cadbury or anything, but for a healthier alternative, it’s pretty decent. I hear dark chocolate is great for you too, but I can not stomach the taste, ew >.< Yoplait’s forme vanilla yogurt is the best yogurt I have ever had. Which is pretty amusing, because most people note that it’s good for a healthy alternative, but not as nice. I disagree, I actually prefer this to the variety with more calories. I really like it. However, I grew up with a horrible selection of food. My mum was a terrible cook, and I was pretty much raised on meals consisting of plain rice, plain over cooked soggy pasta (no sauce), grilled un seasoned meat that was cooked for so long that it felt incredibly stiffed, fast food and frozen meals. As a result, I don’t mind eating food without a shit load of flavour. Vanilla yogurt is actually my favourite. I hate the extra stuff. Lastly, the Quorn mince, is excellent! It’s low in fat and carbs and very high in protein. I use this product so often because you can do so much to it. Sometimes I just fry it with onion and a few vegetables. My ethnicity is Greek, so there are a lot of meals I can still enjoy thanks to the Quorn mince, like Keftedes (yuuuuuum) and Gemistes aka Stuffed Vegetables. In fact, I made them myself for the first time tonight.
Usually these are full of rice and meat mince. I decided to stuff them with the Quorn mince, brown onions, carrots, capsicum, celery, spring onions, asparagus and cauliflower. I added my favourite type of tomato sauce, and damn… do they taste good! I can’t wait to eat them tomorrow. ANYHOW, SORRY TO BORE YOU ALL WITH MY DULL FOOD AND EXERCISE TALK. I’LL MOVE ON TO THE STYLE SHIT NOW.
After I did this to my hair about a month ago, my boyfriend and I went and wondered around Myer. Because hanging out in department stores is fun sometimes. I was trying on hats, and we were told off for taking photographs. Way to ruin our fun Myer! NO WONDER YOUR SALES ARE SO LOW.
I also decided to try a cocktail or the first time in mah life. It was uuh, bigger than my freaking head! I didn’t really like it to be honest, the only alcoholic drink I’ve ever tasted and enjoyed is Smirnoff Ice Red, and guess what? It’s packed with sugar of course. Ha. Good thing I drink very rarely.
Don’t know wassup with my expression here. These are the first pair of jeans I have willingly bought and wanted to wear for YEARS like, 5 or 6 years? I sold them on e-bay though, they were a little big for me. It’s cool though, I replaced them with an awesome pair of Unif leopard print high waisted skinny pants, I’m also planning to purchase a pair of Motel leopard print jeans, the print on them is a lot nicer than the print on the jeans I’m wearing in the image above this paragraph. Alright, 1535 words, I’m going to shut up now.
Sorry about the four day post delay. I feel like I’ve been apologising about the post delays every single time I update the blog lately. Is it even a requirement that I apologise? I have this bad habit with apologising too often, even in instances when it isn’t socially mandatory, I think people find it irritating. I’ve just been working so much more lately, so everything I usually do is being crammed and squashed, so everything is being neglected. I haven’t been able to pay much attention to blog related things, which sucks. I have all these ideas and plans but I just never seem to find time to actually execute these ideas. Anyway, this is all boring talk for you, I’m sure. It’s dull conversation for me too.
Recently, I’ve been thinking, as you do, and something stuck to me. Why is effortless style so ‘trendy’? Why is the appearance of looking effortless so desirable to some people? Occasionally, when I have the time, I assign a lot of time into getting ready, sometimes, I change my clothes three times before I feel confident with the combination clothing that is covering my body. Most of my favourite outfits have had a lot of effort put into them. Ever seen a photography shoot with unbelievable styled outfits? That’s effort. Awesome runway outfits? The vision of a stylist and a fashion designer, again, a lot of effort is invested in those looks.
I feel like, during our lives, we’re told to strive for the best. In terms of school work, our jobs, our hobbies, our interests, whatever! Most of us work so hard at the various activities we’re interested in. So why is ‘effortless’ looking style so popular? Perhaps the attraction is the idea of looking stylish without aspiring to.
I don’t know, personally, I like outfits that appear as if the wearer actually tried to uniquely express themselves, what’s wrong with openly and obviously caring about your appearance? Many of us are proud to care about the appearance of our rooms, our cars, our iPhones (well, I don’t have one) even, but why is caring about the way we look a bad thing? Any thoughts? Do you like ‘effortless’ style?
I decided to alter my hair and see what it would look like multicoloured, I’ve wanted pink hair since I was 13 but have never been brave enough to actually go through with this particular want. If only my hair was thicker and stronger.
A few months ago I wanted to start a zine, and I got a little bit of interest but most people never ended up sending me anything, so that never happened. It’s alright though, I have a few other plans to get to anyway. I did have the chance to interview two lovely ladies, and I don’t want to waste their well thought out answers, so I decided to publish them on the blog. The first one I’m sharing is by the charming Meagan. I’ve been following Meagan’s blog for a while now. I adore her mature, almost enchanting style, with clothes and words. I really admire the way Meagan writes on her blog, all the words fit together so well, always complimenting the mood of her outfits perfectly. I could tell Meagan was a special one from reading her blog, but after reading the answers to the questions I asked, I gained a whole new level of respect for her. This woman is amazing. I’m sure you will all agree.
WHAT IS YOUR FAVOURITE THING ABOUT BLOGGING?
The wonderful people that i’ve been privileged enough to meet. Nothing about blogging is as enjoyable as making with other like-minded, creative, strong feminist women.
DO YOU EVER FEEL PRESSURED, IN ANY WAY, BY THE FASHION ‘BLOGGING WORLD’?
Of course! You’d have to have the steeliest backbone ever to not feel at least some pressure, and who has that? Most the pressure I feel comes from the fact that I’m older, and most bloggers are very young. Also I’m not super skinny or tall, and while I passionately believe in body politics that accepts all body types as part of the human experience, I can’t help but feel a tiny bit pressued by the slithe little creatures that populate the blogosphere. It’s something I struggle to reconcile with myself, and I’ve gotten better about it, but it’s there.
YOU HONESTLY HAVE INCREDIBLE STYLE, I’VE NOTICED THAT RECENTLY, YOU SEEM TO HAVE THIS DESIRE TO LOOK ETHEREAL. DO YOU HAVE ANY MAJOR FASHION OR STYLE INFLUENCES, WHETHER THEY BE INDIVIDUALS OR OBJECTS, OR ANYTHING ELSE?
I do? thanks! I personally don’t think my style is anything major, but it makes me happy and that’s what matters! I’m very inspired by music; I enjoy capturing the moods of music I’m listening to. shoegaze and dreampop are my primary source of inspiration. that style of music is heavily distorted and otherworldy with whispery vocals and transcendential moods. It’s music that is meant to envelop and cradle you, and create worlds that are not like this one, where your mind can can lose itself in a wall of sound. I try to express that with hazy prints and interesting textures. I’m slowly getting away from wearing all black and am excited to see my style evolving.
SPEAKING OF ETHEREAL, IT’S DEFINED IN THE DICTIONARY, AS BEING SOMETHING HIGHLY DELICATE, ALMOST TOO PERFECT FOR THIS WORLD. HOW DO YOU INTERPRET THIS MEANING, WHAT DOES DRESSING IN AN ETHEREAL WAY MEAN TO YOU?
Ohhh, interesting question! I like the idea of that space between sleep and wakefulness… maybe that place is a void of your innermost desires, or when you close your eyes and see swirling colors and project your thoughts onto those colors, maybe it’s a place that exists only a cocteau twins song (see: lazy calm on their album victorialand), but I like going to that place. I’m a very practical, hard-nosed person in my day-to-day life, so going to that place in my thoughts and outfits makes the most sense to me.
I’VE HEARD YOU TALK ABOUT YOUR NEGATIVE THOUGHTS ABOUT OUR CONSUMERIST SOCIETY IN VIDEOS YOU’VE POSTED ON YOUR BLOG PREVIOUSLY, YOU ALSO OCCASIONALLY BRING IT UP IN YOUR POSTS. BEING SOMEONE WHO IS SO OBVIOUSLY INTERESTED IN SELF EXPRESSION THROUGH STYLE, DO YOU EVER FEEL BAD, OR A SENSE OF GUILT, WHEN PURCHASING CLOTHES?
No and yes.
I was forced out of my home when I was 17 and was completely financially indepedent at a very early age. My parents never help pay my rent or bills, never bought me groceries, never covered the cost of any practical expenditures. As a result, I spent my late teens and most of my twenties living in absolute poverty. It’s hard to be completely self-sufficient at the age of 17! I went hungry. I lived in squalid conditions simply because the rent was cheap. I stayed in an absusive relationship for way, way too long because my ex tended to my basic needs as a way to keep me from leaving him. Today, I have a great job that makes me very happy and pays me enough to buy things I need, and things I want every now and then. but It took a LONG time to get here, and it took many hungry nights and tearful days.
When I feel a twinge of guilt for spending my money on something expensive, I understand that it conflicts with my morals, but I also recognize that it’s a symbol of how far I’ve come. (Magnet’s note: I found this very inspirational, good on you Meagan!)
I REALLY LIKE SOME OF YOUR MUSICAL TASTES, DO YOU REMEMBER WHO THE FIRST ARTIST YOU FELL IN LOVE WITH WAS?
Sure do! Wilco, specifically the album yankee hotel foxtrot, when I was a senior in high school. I was obsessed with beck at the time, and a friend handed me the CD saying “oh it’s twerpy, kind of like beck. you’ll love it.” and I did. and I still do! and I credit that album with ingiting my love for music. (Haha, I had a phase of being obsessed with Beck too!)
ARE YOU INTERESTED IN EVER WORKING IN THE FASHION INDUSTRY, OR WOULD YOU RATHER ENJOY IT AS AN ‘OUTSIDER’?
Probably not! though I’ve learned that life has a funny habit of throwing you curveballs when you lease expect it. For now I am very happy working in low-income housing and making a difference in my community. Realistically though, I don’t have a college degree, and if a fashion job with a good salary/benefits presented itself to me, I’d probably take the job, if for no other reason than for more financial security.
YOU LIVE IN CHICAGO, WHAT’S THE GENERAL STYLE SCENE LIKE OVER THERE? DO YOU THINK YOU’LL EVER RELOCATE IN THE FUTURE?
Boring. Chicago is still the midwest, so people here are more conservative and follow the stereotypical midwestern ethos of “not causing a fuss”. I get gawked at a lot in public. I’d like to move to NYC, not for fashion reasons, but because my two closest friends live there and i miss them dearly.
LASTLY, IF SOMEONE HANDED YOU A MILLION DOLLARS IN CASH, RIGHT NOW, WHAT WOULD YOU DO?
Move to NYC. Buy a tiny condo. Quit my job and go back to school to get my bachelor’s degree. Donate/invest in affordable housing for low-income families and organizations that combat homelessness.
Thank you so much for answering all my questions Meagan! Hopefully you all found her answers as enjoyable to read as I did. To finish this post off, I’ll add one image of an outfit I wore, seeing as this isn’t really about me. I don’t know how I feel about this dress, I really loved the idea of it, but on… I’m not sure about the hole thing at the top. What should I do? Sell it, or turn the bottom half into a skirt? Help me decide!
All the photos used for the gif and images of Meagan were taken from her blog
My usually boring life felt like it took a dramatic turn for a few days. My boyfriend surprised me and booked an apartment in the city for for three nights. That was nice, we ate out, made good food, and watched the big bang theory amongst other things. Waking up and being in the city felt good. I would love to to live in the city so much, too bad it’s expensive and I don’t have the money
At the end of it all, we found ourselves at a train station waiting for a train that would take us closer to his house. There was a man standing on the platform on our side, who appeared to be on some sort of mind altering substance. He looked completely out of it, randomly walking around in a small area around him. As he stumbled from left to right, he would frequently fall and struggle to get back up, it was clear that this guy wasn’t behaving normally. Some idiotic bogan on the platform opposite, began yelling at him. Shouting things like, “what are ya doing ya farkin junkie?! you don’t deserve to be alive ya piece of shit” Now, while I don’t exactly have all that much respect for ‘junkies’ I would never start verbally attacking someone for no reason, especially if they appeared to be in a difficult state. Besides, we shouldn’t just judge people like that, there was no certainty that this man was a heroin user.
The man continued to behave in this unusual way, and the stupid bogan continued yelling out like a moron. A few minutes later, the man fell down again, however this time, he didn’t try to get back up. His body began to violently shake, while foam was slowly leaving his mouth. He was having a seizure. What I witnessed next appalled me. The bogan continued yelling at him, despite knowing what was happening, he even yelled out, “KICK HIM WHILE HE’S DOWN”. I mean, really? What the fuck is wrong with some people? So, that douche bag was yelling out horrible things and everyone else was just standing there, staring, some in disbelief, some people had grins on their faces… I don’t know WHY. I couldn’t believe what I was seeing, so I quickly grabbed my phone from my pocket and called an Ambulance. Even the people work work at the station didn’t react so quickly, the Metro lady was just standing there on the other side, staring at the shaking man, with an expression that simultaneously appeared horrified and confused. I told her I was calling the ambulance and she nodded her head. By the time I actually got through to someone (I was surprised at how long this took) the man was conscious and trying to get back up. Once he did, he seemed to be quite troubled and began walking around, in a strange motion, he was walking towards the end of the platform and almost fell on to the train tracks quite a few times.
The other person that works at the station had to run by his side to shield him from falling on to that tracks, especially because a train was now approaching. The Metro employee signalled desperately at the oncoming train, trying to stop it. Luckily the driver saw him and stopped literally right before the platform begins. The train waited there until the man could be calmed down. Meanwhile, I was on the phone, being asked if this man was diabetic, if he had heart problems. I told the nurse I had absolutely no idea, I didn’t know him. I had to hand my phone over to the Metro officer and wait until somebody arrived, for some reason, the Police came. My boyfriend and I were quite delayed because of this, but I wasn’t annoyed. I hope that if one day I’m by myself and happen to have some sort of medical emergency, a stranger calls an ambulance for me too.
Yesterday at work, I was answering a customer’s question and during the conversation, she informed me that her sister’s boyfriend had recently died. I felt shocked and saddened for her. I was watching the photos print out and noticed that this guy looked fairly young. I asked the girl’s mother how old he was and she told me he was 29 and killed himself. I can’t even imagine what his poor girlfriend must be going through Don’t take the people or person you love for granted, be nice to them and listen to them. You never know what is around the corner.
Later I noticed that two people were being escorted to the back of the store by all the managers and two security guards. The police were called. Criminals were lurking around the store and tried to steal a whole bunch of stuff. I’d never witnessed anything like that happen before.
I love this dress but I’m not sure how I feel about this outfit… hmm. I think I’m going to have the dress altered a little. I’m becoming a freaking perfectionist about the way clothes fit on me, it’s expensive. However, I’ve tamed my shopaholic ways recently and I’m forcing myself to save at least a certain amount each week. It’s going well. If anybody cared to know… which I doubt, haha.
Thanks to all the new people who have been ‘liking’ Dark Vice on Facebook! I should really post more on that page, but I’m not sure what to post exactly. Any ideas or suggestions?