A Jewish Tradition

Before I begin, I want to take a minute to explain this blog entry.  The last couple of weeks have been pretty awful, and I really haven’t been up to writing about anything funny.  Yet, the more I thought about it, and the more time went by without me writing, the more upset I was with myself.   First of all, I felt like I would be letting down my followers, because obviously FGW is their only source of laughter, joy, and entertainment, and also because this is my outlet.  This is the place where I get to laugh at myself, speak freely about my life, explain to people why I am the way I am, and sometimes, on rare occasion, I talk about the serious stuff that happens in my life.

About a week and a half ago, I lost my Papa.  I would love to go into what he meant to me, and what I’ve been going through emotionally, but in reality, I’m writing this to get myself out of the funk I am in.  If I start writing about how sad I am, I will never get back to making anyone laugh, including myself.  Instead, I wanted to look at the happier side of things.  To do what I do best, and write about the (if you will) ‘funny’ parts of my experience with his passing.  To be honest, nothing is funny about this situation, but as I thought about what I wanted to write, I just thought about this one part of the Jewish tradition, that is still lingering with me.

So let’s begin.  It is tradition, when someone passes who was Jewish, that you bring something ‘sweet’ to the family.  You know, instead of flowers that you can look at, and enjoy, we prefer something to sweeten our day.  Coffee cake.  Cookies.  Candy.  Toffee.  Fudge. More candy.  Brownies.  Candied nuts.  Tiramisu.  More Candy.

You get the point.

After the funeral, it is tradition to sit Shiva.  This is a time when people come to visit the family, pay condolences, share stories, have a prayer service with the Rabbi, and… bring and eat sweets.

For four days straight, I was surrounded.  Every where I looked there was candy.  I wish I was kidding, and I also wish I had photographic proof, because it was THAT ridiculous.  I couldn’t turn my head 10 degrees without another bowl of candy being there, in front of me.  The dining room tables were covered in delicious treats.  If our days weren’t ‘sweetened’ by the treats surrounding us, then our blood sure was.  I’m serious.  And the fact that I have NO self control, made the situation even worse.  When I say that I couldn’t stop eating this shit, I’m not kidding.  ‘You’ve been watching what you eat for a long time now, you probably don’t even want that crap!’  Bullshit.  I. Ate. It. All.

Every day that went by, during Shiva, I ate more.  I lost all control.  After Shiva was over, you’d think I’d get back on track, but no.  Sugar is some addicting shit.  I have been craving sweet, ever since.  In my attempt to control myself, I have been eating sugar free popsicles, no sugar added fudgesicles… and FUCKING GELATO.

Now, I would like to turn this back to my Papa, for a moment.  During the time that he was sick, I noticed, more than ever, that he was a sucker for anything sweet.  I would watch him eat cookies before his soup for lunch, dig his hand into the (always full) bowl of M&Ms next to his chair, and choose the BIGGEST chocolate in the box when it was passed around the room.  I always knew he had a sweet tooth, and I knew that it trickled down through my family, but I really truly started to see where I got my own sugar addiction from.  My Papa.

I’ll never eat an M&M again, without thinking about him.


On a lighter note, I’d like you to take a moment and picture this scene in your heads:

My family is sitting in my Nana’s living room.  We are all gathered early for the first day of Shiva.  We have set the table, and made coffee.  The candy bowls are full, the coffee cake is cut.  One problem.  The freezer is full to the brim and ‘what if someone brings something that needs to be frozen?!’.  In true form of my family, there is only one logical solution.  Eat the ice cream.  I mean, the containers are taking up space, and we have to make room, so we might as well start eating it.  As I scoop a small amount of ‘Chocolate Peanut Butter You’re Going To Die’ in a bowl for myself (while listening to my family say, ‘ALLISON, WHAT ARE YOU DOING?!- As if they should be doing it either), I look around to see every adult, sitting in a chair, placed on the outside perimeter of the room, with a bowl and spoon.

Apparently, laughter isn’t the best medicine.  It’s sugar.


I love you, Papa.  Thanks for making my world, and my family, so amazingly sweet.




RGF.  Resting Gym Face.

Franz actually requested that I call this entry “Resting Gym Bitch Face”, but it didn’t seem to roll off the old tongue as easily.

I make dumb faces in all aspects of my life.  When I take pictures of myself, I make dumb faces.  When I see people do dumb shit out in public, I make dumb faces.  When I am listening to my friends/family/Franz speak, I make dumb faces.

So, it’s no secret that I would make dumb faces when I am at the gym.  Oh god there are so many reasons as to why I would be making faces… One of which being- I’m listening to Franz.  Like, when he tells me over and over again to STARE at him while he demonstrates an exercise, even though I can see him in the mirror I am looking at.  That definitely calls for a ‘face’.  When I am struggling to lift weights, I make a face.  A very clear, ‘WHYYYYY MEEEEEE’ face.  And please, have no doubt in your mind when I tell you, that my best faces are when I am resting between sets.  When I am struggling to catch my breath, and not die.  Those are the best ‘faces’.  That’s when Franz will laugh at me.

Franz will not only laugh at me, but will follow up his deep belly laugh with a comment about my face.  His head will be back, while he laughs uncontrollably, and holds his stomach.  When he catches his breath, he will look at me and say, ‘You look so dumb.  You’re faces are stupid.’

Do you know what that is?  Love.

Yup!  That’s love.  He knows that I can’t be mad about what he says, because he knows that I know all about my dumb faces.  I know I look stupid.  Sometimes, I even catch my own face in the mirror, and I laugh at myself.  It’s hard not to.  I look ridiculous.

With that being said- I need this shirt.IMG_1277

I Thought You’d Never Ask

On numerous occasions (FINE! Every time..) at the end of training sessions, I am so exhausted by the end, that I dramatically collapse on the VERY CLEAN AND OBVIOUSLY VERY COMFORTABLE floor of the gym.  Franz hates this.  First of all, I think (I know) it embarrasses him.  I just literally spaghetti legs straight to the floor… I guess it could be somewhat embarrassing for a trainer, but whatever.  Secondly, he’s grossed out that I have no problem laying on the floor, and normally, I would probably be grossed out too.  I mean, let’s be honest, they can clean that place all they want (and to their credit, they do keep it clean!), but it’s still a gym.  Dirty sneakers, sweat, spit… it’s inevitable that it’s everywhere, and on everything.  Gyms are gross.

Anyways, Franz is so used to seeing me collapse into a pile of death, that he doesn’t even say anything any more.  Instead, he let’s me lay there for a few minutes, heaving… usually mumbling some inaudible words, and then typically closing my eyes and wishing I was in pajamas.  At the end of my pity party, Franz will normally chivalrously extend his hand to me, and seamlessly pull me up to my feet, as if I am a rag doll.

So let me set the scene for you from last weeks ‘Lower Body Murder Day’.  Franz had basically made me do 2,762,046 squats, and 9,613,763 dead lifts.  No, I’m not exagerating.  My body was sore and weak, and my legs were jelly.  My mouth, however…. worked perfectly fine (between the heaving breaths).  As we walked over to ‘the green’, to where the death sled was sitting, I opened my unfiltered dumb mouth, and said, ‘Ugh!! Can’t you think of ANYTHING else for me to do?!  All you ever have me do are squats and pushing the fucking sled!! What do I pay you for?!’

Now, let me be clear.  I know what I pay him for.  He knows that I’m kidding when I say that shit.  I throw that specific comment out there on the regular, because I know how dumb he thinks I am when I say it, and it makes me laugh, inside.  Also, don’t you worry, because in turn, Franz has plenty of things he says that ‘get back at me’, for what I say to him.  It’s a very healthy, dysfunctional relationship.

Anyways, I mention my kind words of wisdom, and he responds by pulling a TRX rope from it’s home on the wall, tying it around the sled, and says ‘Of course I can think of new things for you to do!!  Today, you’re going to pull the sled… backwards.  And yes, I’ll be standing on it’.

I literally almost died on the spot.  I mean, part of me was like, ok, going backwards won’t be that bad.  I can do this.  My legs are strong, and I can handle pushing this man-beast while he takes a free ride across the gym.  As I reluctantly get into position to pull, my body reminds me just how weak I am at the moment.  I am so tired, and now I have to pull this meat head and a steel machine, down ‘the green’ and back again.

I start to pull on the handles at the end of the rope, and get some momentum.  By momentum, I mean, we were moving- but very, very slowly.  As I pulled backwards, my toes jammed into the front of my sneakers, my legs shook, my breath was severely shortened, and I complained- The. Whole. Time.

I got to the end of ‘the green’, and bent over, hands on knees, trying desperately to catch my breath.  For once in Franz’s life, he took my complaining seriously, and told me I didn’t have to pull the sled back, that this time, I could just push it.  Awe… so sweet. I can just push it now…’.

Again, I get myself into position, take a deep breath, give myself a pep talk, and start to push.  I’ll fast forward to when I got to the other end of the gym, and Franz hopped off of his throne atop the sled, and I collapsed to the floor.  Like usual, he allowed me to lay there for a moment, and suffer.  Then, Franz reaches his hand down towards me, and says so sweetly, ‘Would you take my hand….in training’

Then, without skipping a beat, as he lifted me from my death bed, he followed up his own proposal with, ‘I thought you’d never ask’.

I’ve never been more in… love?


If anyone knows me, or have read some of these blog entries, then they would know that I suffer from ADD.  I am (almost…good lord) 35, and it has taken me my whole life to find my own ways of doing things: To stay organized, to stay on task, to stay motivated, to stick with something.  In a previous post, I mentioned what it’s like to have ADD, in my world.  You can read about it here, Snow Days, ADD, and Anxiety.

This year, I stuck to it, for the most part.  I haven’t given up on training, or trying to be active.  I stuck to my guns, and didn’t eat pasta or rice AT ALL.  I gave up drinking all alcohol (except for the few tiny sips here and there to help taste test new craft brews…oh how I miss beer!).  Sure, I have my moments where I give into myself a little.  We don’t need to call it cheating, or slipping up, because in reality- this is life!! Shit happens!!  Birthdays, holidays, celebrations of all kinds… days when you just need something to make you feel better… we all have those.  You’re not cheating.  You’re living.  So, in 365 days, I have definitely allowed myself to ‘live’, but I have also given myself the opportunity to succeed, in ways I never thought I could.

Now, all of this is tacky, sentimental crap, is building up to something that seems so dumb, but to me: This. Is. Success.

For 365 days, for one whole year, I have tracked my food in the app “My Fitness Pal”.  Everything I eat.  Every recipe I ever came up with (BTW: If I post a recipe on here, you can search for it under the brand name “Allys Own” on MFP).  Every ounce of chicken I weighed, or grape I counted out, was tracked.  I had my times where it would have been too much to track, like I said before, it’s not a slip up.  I was aware that maybe I wasn’t doing the best eating, or I was out to a restaurant and it was easier to just track a well-educated rounded number of calories, vs. actual food items; But, this wasn’t habit.  Habit was entering food as I ate it.  Searching for nutrition facts online.  Creating recipes, and adding them into the app.  That was habit.

Secretly, deep down, I couldn’t wait for the moment the app told me that I had tracked for 365 days.  I literally wanted balloons to fly across the screen….but they didn’t.  I just got a quick update on my app that said, ‘you’ve tracked for 365 days’.  Well, that was disappointing- but none the less… I DID IT!!!  ADD be damned!!!! I stuck to something!

They say it takes 21 days to create a new habit.  I would like to adjust that for myself.  I’m pretty sure that maybe at the three month mark is when things become second nature, for me.  So, here’s to 365 more days of tracking.  Here’s to 365 more days of working hard for a better me.  Here’s to 365 more days of living my life, and letting funny shit happen, so I can keep writing about it.

Cheers! WUN!image1

…and no, I don’t want to be friends with you on MFP.  Find me somewhere else.  The only person who has access to seeing this crap is my nutritionist!! 😉


Franz always wants me to pay attention to what he says, and learn, so that ‘You can do this on your own, and you don’t always need me’.  Yeah ok, Franz.  As if I’d push myself half as hard as you push me.  As if I’d finish a set with as much determination, as I do with you.  I wouldn’t.

I have, however, tried to pay more attention to the things we do, the names of the exercises, and why they are good for my body.  At least I am trying to understand what each lift of a kettlebell, squat, pull-up, or sled push is doing for me.

The other day, on Upper Body Murder Day, Franz walks over to a resistance band that is tied to a steel pole.  He says, ‘Ok, this is new.  You’re going to do rows, like you normally do, except this time, you’re doing them fast.  Speed Rows.’  He says this while demonstrating what they should look like.

‘What’s the point?  What do speed rows do for me, besides make me look stupid while doing them?’ I ask. (Yes, I had to add the last part. It IS me, we’re talking about!)

‘You’ll see when you start doing them’, he replied.  Normally he would answer my question with a well thought out, thorough response as to what this work out is doing to my body, where I should feel the strain in my muscle, and just how many parts of my body I am working, while doing it.  Not this time, though. Not when I actually asked for an explanation.

I grab ahold of the band, and step back into position. Before I pull, Franz says, ‘Don’t let the band pull you back in’.  He was probably having flashbacks of my feet flailing about while trying to do pull-ups, using the same kind of resistance band.  Anyways, I start to pull the band in row formation, rapidly back toward my body.  It was definitely harder than it looked, and I definitely felt it, in my arms.  My core was feeling it too, because I was unknowingly keeping myself super tight to ‘engage my muscles’ (as Franz would say, usually while smacking my ‘abs’ to make sure they were tight).

I ask again, ‘So what is the point of doing it really fast?’

‘Because… it’s awesome.’ Franz replied.  Oh…. ok then.

So, the next time I am looking for a new work out routine, that I most certainly won’t do by myself at the gym, I’ll just look around for anything that looks ‘awesome’ to do.  Cool.


Snow Days, ADD, and Anxiety

First of all, Happy Freaking New Year my fellow FGWF (Fat Girl Wunning Fans- thanks Katie!)  I could say something like ‘New Year, New US’, or some seriously inspiring quote like these: But I won’t, because these are tacky, and … Continue reading