I travelled overseas just as the virus started to break out. This is my story thus far.
I know what you’re thinking. “Claire, why in the world are you talking about being fat in photos when your…
(Y'know what, this face was the exact moment my legs had stuck together and I wasn't moving anywhere from my spot on the ground, and the sweat behind my knee caps had just squelshed. Yeesh. Welcome to #RealTalk)
One of my most favourite things about being a teenager in the 2000's was the fact that I got to see emo bands come out with ridiculously long titled songs that made nearly no sense, but were somehow awesome. I actually managed to transfer this concept into a lot of my old poetry I used to write titles like; "This could have only been four words but is now a whole paragraph avoiding sweat: the novel"
Growing up - I was acutely aware that I sweated more than most people. Like - it was super gross, and is still, super fucking gross. I'm a plus size girl. I always have been. It's not like I can honestly sit here and write an article about sweat and glamify it, regardless if it's a perfectly natural thing or not.
The point though that it IS a perfect natural thing.
That doesn't stop it being hard though.
GOING BACK TO THE OLD SCHOOL DAYS
I know coming out of P.E. back in high school it was rough. Particularly after any class that featured that horrifying excuse of exercise called the BEEP test, (Yeah, you know the one. I had nightmares about it. Level one, one. bee bee beep) Finishing that class, I broke. I'm talking about full face red, wheezing, and sweat dripping down for days. Okay maybe not days. There's a thing called a shower which was readily available after school, but that was the thing yeah? In Australia, (or at least at my high school) whilst we had showers available, blow me down if anyone ever actually used them after sport. I have a list of things I'd tell my younger self. Advocating for time to allow the option to actually shower off is certainly one of them.
A NUMBER OF ISSUES
There's a number of issues with sweat. <br>Firstly, it smells. Yes, I know that technically it's meant to be that way. Apparently it comes from the idea that people with opposite genes find it attractive, and therefore will be more likely to have a better gene pool. Or something like that.
Let's be honest though, sweat and the smell is pre' gross. Especially when if and when it gets soaked into your clothes.
If you had P.E. first up on a day, and you were stuck in your clothes for the rest of it, Good luck to your parental figure for getting that stink out.
I know even in my current uniform that I have for work, I have to double wash my clothes just to be on the safe side, and even then, I'm wearing $7 kmart tops because I know eventually all these are going to be good for are the bin, which is a horrid waste of money and waste to the environment.
Then you get into the embarrassment piece. Who knows that you sweat? Who can see it? It's like when you're casually walking up a hill for the whole of two minutes and it looks like you've just run a half marathon, who's out there judging you? That feeling of being fearful of wearing anything light coloured to the gym, because you know that your sweat patches are going to be SUPER evident and don't want people to stare. Not to mention your whole entire wardrobe rivals archers closet with the amount of choices of black you have.
Do you know how much I'd LOVE to add my colour into my wardrobe? Seriously, there's only so much you can do with dark clothing, and we all know that I love white and pinks, but not so much the see through when wet factor.
Don't even get me STARTED on being called out on your sweaty problem. I'm aware that I'm gross. I feel gross. There is only so much spray I can put on before I start smelling like a perfume shop, (and actually I'll get to that in a moment) - but at my last job - I had FOUR different people approach me at different times telling me that they had complaints. I was mortified, and I legit bawled my eyes out. It was the most humiliating thing to ever happen. "Is your washing machine broken? Maybe there's some mold? Do you actually wash them...? Have you tried xyz product?" FUCKING YES I'VE TRIED EVERYTHING LEAVE ME ALONE IN MY OWN SOLITARY CONFINEMENT PLEASE AND THANKS.
Let's also not forget one of the worst things about sweat.
I'm talking about that AWFUL feeling of sweat under your boobs and butts. You know about that horrible chafe you get between your legs and you have to waddle for at least two days and sleep with a pillow between your legs because it hurts. I want to say I'm a stranger to all of this, but I'm not. Which sucks so freaking much because I'd love to be a sweat free type of gal.
Now, I don't want this post to be all up in the negatives.
So instead I wanted to quickly put some things up that maybe people didn't know - or are just things I've come across that I can appreciate.
1. Antiperspirants, deodorants, perfume, and body spray/mist - are not the same product.
Dove has a really quick and neat post here about some of the differences between antiperspirants and deodorants. If you can't be bothered clicking, here's a quick recap; Antiperspirants are designed to kick butt against sweat and odour, (especially when active), whereas deodorants do a good job when you're more chilled back and enjoying life in the slow lane. Perfumes, body spray and mist, on the other hand, are there to make you smell pretty. They do nothing for your sweaty butt.
So if you're at the supermarket and needing to choose between Lynx Africa and Illusions by Impulse, Lynx Africa is actually going to be more your friend. (Full disclosure, I was actually going to make fun of Africa here, but apparently it's a full antiperspirant so who knew?) Which I'm sure is just a shock to you as well. If you're finding that you're still being super sweaty, then there are MANY others out there with a stronger anti-sweat effect.
Talking about this, if you've read any of my posts recently, you'll know I've been raving about the My Shay product I've been using. Honestly - I love it to pieces. I still think I might need something a bit stronger, but compared to everything else I've tried over the years, it's been such a blessing in disguise. I particularly like the smell because it's just amazing, and Tara (the kickass lady who owns the company) has made them in super sensitive ranges too. Yay!
*I promise this isn't a sponsored post, I'm just really passionate about stuff that works for uncomfortable situations.
2. 3B CREAM
I've talked about this one before but 3B Cream has been a life saver on so many of my trips. I swear upon this stuff for anything to do with chafing. I legit went my whole last Darwin trip with ZERO rash, and I was sweating like mad. Could not rate it highly enough. It works great for your upper body, lower body - and absolutely between yo' thighs, too.
Another one (depending on the heat and your sweat level) that I've recommended in the past, is the dusting powder from Lush which I found smelt amazing, but again, sweated off pretty quickly in a Melbourne heatwave. I think if you were just wearing it again on a chill day, that you'd do a bit better.
3. CHAIR BUTT SWEAT IS A THING. AND IT'S OKAY.
The worst part of going to the gym I find, is the fact that whenever I'm on stationary equipment, (For example the leg press, or seated rows - or whatever,) I leave a butt sweat patch. (Okay, look, it's the motivation to go in the first place, but this is a close second,) It's pre' gross. Like, oh look. That's exactly where my butt was.
I also hate going out to dinner, or basically anywhere that has a plastic seat because trying to cover this up is horrible and awkward. I personally found taking a small thing of disinfectant wipes with me, and do a quick wipe over before I leave makes me feel a bit better. Generally you can pick some up that sit super well within a bag, and defo in a backpack. I'm a little less self conscious now. Generally I won't hide what I'm doing. If you're not quite there though, you can just say that you've spilled something from whatever you were eating and wipe it away that way.
Let's be honest though, it's NOT something to be ashamed about. Whilst not everyone has this issue - I reckon a whole bunch of us do and it's just a part of you that you've just gotta embrace and be like BAM. I'm being pro-active about it.
If you're an adult who has their skin routine down pat, first of all, I applaud you, and secondly - you'd hopefully know a bit more of how to do said routine than I do, however in a moment of being an adult, I placed moisturiser on my face before leaving the house. Low and behold, it was a total heatwave inside my car, and the moisturiser I'd so lovingly put on my face 10 minutes early obviously did not have time to soak - and had now re-surfaced and started running down my face, and more importantly to this story - IN. TO. MY. EYES. I was in the middle of town, in rush hour, driving nearly blind, crying more poor eye(?) out because it stung like hell. Nearly died that day.
Do not put moisturiser around your eyes before leaving the house if it's a hot day. This goes for any other time you know you're gonna sweat it out, before it sets properly into your skin.
This also goes for sunscreen, which has also happened too many times that I care to admit for.
SO TO WRAP UP
all my fellow sweaty people, you are not alone. I feel you. (From a distance, because let's be honest, you don't want anyone touching you when you feel like that.) Plus understand the frustration of trying 10000 different types of sprays and creams to assist. I get the humiliation you feel. I'm okay to talk about it - because if it makes one person feel less alone in the world - AMAZING. It's a natural thing. Like boogers and snot. Whilst it might be natural, it doesn't make it less gross. At least you know there are others out there.
I'd love to add more tips into the above for suggestions on how to combat sweat anxiety, or to embrace it (more or less) - so drop a comment in the comment box below!
Two posts in one day? Whoops! Here’s a catch up on some things that have happened this month ♥
Month two of the 366 day project ♥
IT'S THE FIFTEENTH OF JANUARY.
It almost feels like it was yesterday we were still writing 2019 - and yet we've now had FIFTEEN DAYS (or at least for those on my side of the world) to practice it. I actually can't believe how ridiculously quick it's been. I've already broken like 80% of my original resolutions that I wasn't officially committing to - but been able to commit to a few others.
I figured I haven't actually given a proper life update in a while so heck, why not now?
WEIGHT LOSS & DIET
Yeah, look I really wanted to be like BAM. I ROCKED INTO THE NEW YEAR. #NEWYEARNEWME but seriously, I spent from New Years day all through to about five days ago riddled with period pain, PMS and every hormone imbalance under the sun. I skipped my PT sessions for a whole week because I was too fucking tired and exhausted to get out of bed. I totally ate way too much Macca's and chocolate and just threw all my fucks away.
Now - I don't recommend this approach.
And I'm regretting this because again, we are fifteen days into this year and whilst we don't think on a daily basis that our decisions are doing much, if I'd been a champ for those two weeks I'd be much further on than not.
However, I also don't regret this because I know my body well enough to know that if I'd attempted to try and force it to do exercise and clean eating and whatever else, we would've reverted a million steps back.
The takeaway here is that I'm back gyming now, three times a week. I hit a PB on my leg press of 140kg after three years of not doing anything of the same sort so I'll take that as a win. I've also started back on my shakes and diet plan so I've got a bit of a goal which is what we want to see. I think I'll start trying to do a weekly update post on my food intake and also what I'm doing at the gym ♥
My countdown for Bali (which ho'shit, I haven't blogged on yet, watch this space) is coming up in like, less than 50 days. Which also means my birthday is less than 50 days so heck yeah - bring on 28! I've finally booked in my accommodation, and just finalising my activity list. I'm a bit frustrated as I had full intentions on doing Bali for under $1k for the whole week, which I'm 99% convinced is doable (And will be a challenge later in the year I think) - but, I figure screw it. It's again my birthday, and my first overseas trip in like four years, and I think I can afford to splash out a little.
I'm planning on seeing the Orangutans and Elephants (Yes to the mud bath - no to riding them) for my actual birthday which I'm RIDICULOUSLY excited over.
Still sussing out insurance and slightly skeptical that my flights are going to be fine as I'm going with my least favorite airline because they are unfortunately super cheap but I guess it's gonna be a watch this space.
LIFE IN GENERAL
It's going okay. To start the year off feeling so horrible and crappy, and not sticking to my diet plan for the first bit was a bit of a downer, especially since I was GO GO GO coming out of 2019. I feel like I'm all in all in a really good space and should have a bit of direction. The vlog is troubling me only because I don't know what in the world to talk about but oh well - that's something I guess will come in time.
So that's my year round up so far. How's your year going?
Let me know in the comments!
A 365 Photo a Day Project: Part One
Oh. My. Goodness.
How fast has 2019 just been? I swear it was only just like March and I just came back from my holiday in Melbourne. I think we can all agree that a lot of us told 2019 to come at us - and boy, didn't it just? I'm going to be completely honest and say I started 2019, pretty shittily. I had the worst 2018 Christmas (in fact, I didn't even see more than 10 minutes that day as I was so sick.) I was still terribly unwell NYE and had a super long flight back from Darwin to Hobart the following day (word of advice, don't fly whilst you're sick. It's a) not fun and b) totally not fair on other passengers. (Looking at you old guy who got me sick on the initial plane ride.)
I'll do up another post about my 2019 in review, because it really was a year of ups and downs, and I wanted this to be a bit more of an inspiration post rather than a #woeisme sort of things. I'm honestly totally one for new years resolutions, I hardly ever stick to them, but, I watched this cool little video on skillshare the other day and the premise was around "side quests" and how to get to your next goal. Now, the actual video itself I'd highly recommend watching - but one particular part mentions that you should write down your goals on a tiny piece of paper and keep it with you, and you'd eventually sort of manifest it into coming true. I've done this with a list before a couple of years back, and actually managed to tick off about 75% of the things I'd set out - so y'know what guys, fuck it. Let's set a goal of 20 things for 2020 that we can see me try to achieve over the year.
- Clear all outstanding debt
- Create a community for millennials to be able to connect together
- Get my first tattoo
- Save $9000 by November
- Try to de-clutter my room & storage unit
- Read (or re-read) 20 books and write reviews about them
- Focus on minimizing waste footprint
HEALTH & VANITY GOALS
- Hit a personal best for weight loss - (hit 70kgs) - then fine tune down to appx 60kg
- Gym/Exercise 3 times a week
- Do the splits
- Try seven new sports
- Fit into a size 8 by November for my friends wedding ♥
- Be able to dead lift 100kg
- Commit to 4 months of PT sessions
- Grow my hair another few inches and wear it down more often
- Set up four different photo shoots of progress goals (one for each season)
PHOTOGRAPHY & BLOG GOALS
- Continue my 365 day photo project
- Launch my re-branded photography line & Continue new creativity content monthly
- Collaborate with both national and international brands for content & guest post
- Earn 2k a month from blogging
- Learn how to film & edit video - and create YouTube content
- Post at least twice a week & schedule in advance
- Earn half of my savings from the first point in the list through photography gigs
- Somehow keep said savings and upgrade my camera to a 5D mk iv (or v as that should be out soon)
- Each month focus on a new area of photography or editing I haven't before (tilt shift, film, landscapes etc)
- Do a "Hello Stranger" project and photograph 100 random people
- Complete the "Vanity Project" of self reflection
- Grow twitter following to over 2k, same with instagram
TRAVEL & SOCIAL GOALS
- Plan/Organise a six to twelve month international trip
- Learn how to speak a second language
- Gain employment for a job overseas for a period of time
- Stay in a hostel
- Go out with someone new, in either my home town or internationally
- Show someone around Hobart as a tour guide
- Make new pen pals overseas
- Try to get out once a month to a social night
- Find new places in Tasmania to blog about
- Go on road trips with Wally once a month, and see if I can find some friends to come along
I'm totally sure there's meant to be more that I'm aiming for - but I think this seems like a pretty good list for now. What are you looking forward to trying to achieve for 2020? Let me know in the comments below <3
Do you remember when you were a little kid, and you'd try to stay up late to see if you could see Santa, but fail miserably and in the morning the cookies would be eaten, the carrots you left out were nibbled on and your stocking was filled with Santa gifts? Hopefully you do, those were the good ol' days. Christmas was absolutely magical. I loved counting down the days, getting the advent calendar out, decorating the tree.
When I got a bit older, (like circa my early 20's) - I hit a bit of a road bump. I was in an abusive relationship with my boyfriend at the time. My home relationship was non-existent. I didn't really celebrate Christmas for a number of years (that I can remember. Joys of depression and forced memory loss.) I was happy to work my retail and hospitality job because, why not, right?
But over the last few years I've tried to make a bit more of a conscious effort. I figured - why should Christmas lights and presents only be restricted to those with little kids and big families? So I bought this pretty cool Kmart tree, bought some fairy lights and a few decorations and put it up in my room.
Fast forward to today.
And I just feel, defeated.
I didn't think, even with everything that has happened over the past few years, that I'd ever sit in the statistic that looks at the numbers that are shared on social media for those doing it tough over Christmas. Realistically, I feel terrible for feeling so. There's really nothing stopping me from not having a great Christmas, but it's just the fact that it's been such an overwhelming year. I feel lonely that I don't have the people that I would normally expect to be here celebrating with me.
My Dad, bless his heart, gifted me some tickets to a cricket game coming up in a few weeks which I asked for, but added an extra ticket along so I could bring a friend. I had to withhold myself from breaking down is saying I realistically didn't have anyone else to come with me. Again, weighing up the idea that people I want to be with, have chosen not to be there.
I think that might actually be the worst part, when you're trying so hard to have a life and reach out to people who you think should be in your support network, and not have those people live up to the expectations in your head.
Today just feels like another day.
Another, rather long, and stressful day.
I'm grateful for the things I've received, but I'll be more grateful to put this holiday season behind me.
See, there's this thing that happens when you battle anxiety of depression. If you're lucky, you get better, and you go through days, weeks, months, and if you're amazingly lucky - years without relapsing back into that space.
I can't speak for everyone who has battled for mental health issues, nor could I ever expect to. But for me personally, knowing what I've been through, the hardest thing to have happen - is when you relapse. When you know that you've fought so fucking hard to get out of whatever hole you got into, that you spoke to your therapist and put all the action plans in place, you've been working on your health, you've done everything right and then BANG. You've reverted back into this slump that can quickly spiral out of control.
The word draining gets thrown around a bit - and it is. It's draining to have to have an ongoing battle with the voice in your head that tells you that you're trash. That what you're doing is not enough, and you're a failure. It's draining to battle with that voice and it's so, so loud, that you get to the point of pure frustration and desperation to just shut it up for a few moments.
It's hard when you try and explain to someone, that you're aware that your thoughts are irrational, and you're fully aware that most of the time they make no sense, and it's equally as hard to try and justify that whilst you're aware of this - that at this exact moment, that's it's very real to you, and you are struggling.
I'm not a person to shy away from speaking up to say I'm struggling. I am. I am not in a great headspace. I haven't slept properly for a week - I have continual nightmares. I saw a girl today, probably the same age as me, in hysterics at the bottom of the pathway of the Tasman Bridge, and as I called 000 to hopefully prevent something absolutely unimaginable from happening - it struck me that it wasn't unimaginable. I have known the feeling of wanting to be free of pain. Free from voices. Free from debt and the overwhelming amount of pressure on the world.
She's been on my mind all day, and that I hope she's okay, and it was just a bad day and she knows it gets better, because eventually it does. It might not seem it; there have been a lot of nights where I've refused to believe this statement myself, but it turns around.