Running Revelations

This morning, I hit the Town Lake Trail for an hour of deep breathing and talking to myself. It was wholly rejuvenating, and when I came home, I sautéed up a Hot Plate of collard greens, sweet potatoes, and chicken breast. While I ate, I scribbled in my journal: “Got the snakes out of my brain.”

In no particular order, here are my…

Running Revelations

The “Just Enough” Corollary
Experience has shown that for me, living as the Best Version of Myself works better than setting hard and fast goals for a particular time period. But this morning, I developed a corollary to that rule. For now, my mantra is going to be “just enough.” As I explain in my About Page, the crazier the workout, the more I enjoy it, and I love to tuck into big piles of food. But these days, I have to balance my crazy-ass workouts with lovely meanderings in the sun and chilling the F out at kundalini yoga. And that got me wondering: what if I did just enough of everything instead of aiming to go over the top? So this month, I’m trying it. Eating just enough. Training just enough. Sleeping just enough. Working just enough. I know it’s not revolutionary, but it might be evolutionary.

I love running by myself.
For the last two years or so, Dave and I have been reading books about being introverts, and it’s been illuminating. Because I talk a lot, and I generally like people, I’ve always assumed I fell on the extroverted side of life, but I’m finding more and more that I’m really an introvert that displays as an extrovert. This recognition has allowed me to let myself off the hook when I need to cocoon to recharge my personal batteries. I stay in my pjs and read all day, do my nails, watch Midsomer Murders… all without speaking to or engaging with other people. It is luxurious and restorative and 100% necessary. This morning I realized I need my solitary workouts, too. Don’t get me wrong: I cherish the times that Dave and I train together, but I at least once a week, I need to go solo, too. [Matt Madeiro had a nice piece recently on solitude.]

I can only play with the Zombies once a week.
On a related note, y’all know I’m crazy for the Zombies, Run! app, but this morning, I was in the mood to listen to music, and I noticed that without the zombie story playing in my head, I could hear myself think. By the time I’d circled the lake, I’d made some decisions, drafted a few blog posts in my noggin, and had a plan for the day mapped out.

Music sounds so freakin’ good.
Another “no duh, Mel” perhaps, but don’t you agree that there are some days that music just sounds even better than usual? For a full hour this morning, walked and ran on alternating songs. It was a great way to get lots of outdoor time without demolishing myself, and by letting my iPod control the intervals — songs provide a naturally-occurring 3- to 4-minute interval most of the time — I could forget about the clock and just go.

In case you’re curious, here’s my playlist for the morning. Running songs are in bold:

Blue Monday, New Order
My Disease, Bullets and Octane
Mr. Brightside, The Killers
Run Runaway, Slade
Going Blind, Bullets and Octane
2 of Hearts, Electric Valentine+Ultraviolet Sound (cover of Stacey Q)
Cruel to be Kind, Nick Lowe
Rock N Roll Jesus, Kid Rock (Bummer that this landed on a walk interval. Great running song!)
Blackeyed Blonde, Red Hot Chili Peppers
Fake It, Seether
I Was Made For Dancin’, Leif Garrett
Don’t Leave Me This Way, Communards
Nice, Duran Duran
Stronger, Kanye West

Yoga is one of the things I do, but it’s not who I am.
The yoga classes, swimming in the Caribbean, and walking on the beach last week during our yoga retreat were a gift. But I felt out of sorts a lot of the time. I just didn’t feel like myself in Mexico. I was hot, itchy, relaxed, but craving stimulation. I forced myself to stay off the internet, but I missed my real life. I missed the “fired up, talks a lot, swears like a sailor, likes to wear black” version of me. I craved the food I cook. I yearned to write blog posts. And I spent a lot of time daydreaming about Prague and the trips I want to take to Romania, Croatia, Ireland, Wales, and Hungary. I wanted to feel like myself — bookish, sometimes surly, often emotional, prone to black turtlenecks and black boots — rather than the person I felt like the yoga retreat expected: mellow, quiet, waiting to “be transformed.” It just didn’t feel right for me. Yes, I need the mental time out and connectedness of yoga a few times a week, but I don’t thrive in a perpetual time out — and yoga is a component in what I do… but I’m not a yogi.

I need to rediscover my inner Tura Satana.
Tura Satana was a bawdy, larger-than-life, B-movie actress who starred, most infamously, as Varla in Faster, Pussycat! Kill! Kill! I met her at a screening of the movie when I first moved to Austin in 2000. That was before I joined the Roller Derby, and I was enchanted by her big boobies and even bigger confidence. I aspired to be like that, to embrace the notion that little ol’ me could be a sexy bombshell if I decided that’s what I wanted to be. Fast forward a few years… I helped found the Texas Rollergirls flat track roller derby and created my skating persona Melicious. And once, for a photo shoot in 2006, I imitated Tura Satana’s style.

I’ve been working through some pretty major confidence and body image issues these last few months, and looking at these photos, I realized something really important. I was not thinner or leaner in these pics than I am now. The difference was my confidence. I believed I was sexy and strong and unstoppable. That was before my thyroid meltdown, before selling my soul to the corporate overlords for 4+ years, and before some other personal struggles that really shook my faith in myself and what I’m doing. I feel like the last two years have been about crawling out of a “personal worst” hole, and I’m grateful for the lessons I’ve learned while doing it — and proud of myself for accepting the learning. But it’s time for me to be a badass again.

Sometimes the clothes really do make the girl.
To that end, I’m cleaning out my closet to get rid of anything that doesn’t make me feel awesome — and you guys, that is a lot of stuff. Then I’m buying a few new badass-worthy pieces. I’m not sure what they’ll be yet, but I can tell you what they will not be. They will not be “appropriate for the office,” or floral or “cute.” They will not be “professional” and, in some cases, they may border on innappropriate. I am also very seriously considering giving myself fuchsia bangs again for the summer. Yeah, I know it’s “so 2006,” but I also don’t care. I gave up my Bettie Page bangs in a rainbow of colors when I signed the acceptance letter for my full-time gig with the corporate overlords, and I kinda want to act like an asshole teenager this summer

Being badass, one week at a time.
Dave and I are working on a plan for the Summer of Awesomeness 2012; full post on that coming soon because, really, I want you to have a Summer of Awesomeness, too. My previous Summer of Awesomeness was in 2008. That year, I signed up for a 12-week Spartan Challenge at CrossFit Central, and I committed to doing a sh*t-ton of training that summer. I went to class three times a week. I did extra workouts on my own. I learned to love running. I ate perfect Zone meals every time I ate. It was without a doubt the best summer of my life. I was lean, fit, tan, happy, and didn’t even mind that the temps were 90+ for months on end. But that was, again, before my thyroid decided it wanted to break up with me.

Because of my broke-ass thyroid, I can’t commit to a high-intensity, 12-week plan — but I can commit to having another great summer, one week at a time. This is new for me, this idea of being committed but flexible. I made a workout plan for the week that alternates hard days and recovery days, but that also includes lots of movement. If it doesn’t wear me out, then next week I’ll do what I really want to do… which is throw in a little metcon on Saturday before yoga.

Monday: walk/run (Done!)
Tuesday: strength training @ the craptastic; kundalini yoga
Wednesday: vinyasa yoga
Thursday: strength training @ the craptastic
Friday: Zombies, Run!
Saturday: hatha yoga
Sunday: walk around the lake

Whew! That is a lot of thinking for one 60-minute jaunt around the lake! But I feel ever-so-much-more centered now.

The biggest takeaway for me: Now that I’m out from under the corporate overlords jackboot, and I’m figuring out how I want my new life to unfold, I need to find a way to combine the “higher self” that I find in yoga with the boobalicious me I like to fancy myself to be.

Do you have a trick for getting back to the “real” you?

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  • APayne says:

    I think its great that you are open to new ways to be the best you. It takes balls to evaluate your life and ask yourself, “how can I make this better?”

    A little time always helps, as it gives you space between where you are now, where you were, where you want to be.

    I’ve come to accept that I have different needs at different times in my life. I try to not to compare my self “then” to “now” since there is no way to replicate the scenarios in one period of life with another.

    Striving to learn from mistakes, and always attempting to hone in on the real you is what keeps life exciting and challenging. At least for me it does since I have plenty of mistakes from which to draw lessons.

    So good luck on your honing! Don’t forget to be nice to yourself along the way. 🙂

    P.S. I came on your site to double check the EZ coconut curry recipe, and I couldn’t stay away from the blog fabulousness!

    • Mel says:

      I’m finding it really difficult these days to not compare my “now” to my “then” — and I know it’s not a good idea. “Comparison is the killer of joy.” But it’s hard.

      I was so delighted that when I turned 40, I was healthier and happier than I’d ever been — then just a few months later, the bottom fell out of my health, and it’s been annoying ever since.

      But as you can see, I’m working on it…

      Thanks for stopping by and sticking around!

  • Kathleen says:

    I just have to give you a big “hell yes” and an “amen” and a high-five.

    I feel like I’m CONSTANTLY having to give myself gut-checks like these. My trick for getting back to my “real” me is by watching the movie of my life. Am I living a narrative I’d want to watch? What story do I want to tell – even if it’s only to myself? And more importantly – what’s the soundtrack and coloring like?

  • Joy Dvorak says:

    Great post! I love how you took the time to get yourself centered and got your own expectations in check for the sake of improving yourself. Very inspiring and motivating…keep up the great work 🙂

  • Kristin says:

    I miss you and hope to run into you again soon!

  • Lynne says:

    Leif Garrett on your running playlist. ‘Nuff said.

  • Michelle says:

    I love this blog for so many reasons, but I think it sums up nicely how I feel regularly. Folks at my gym don’t get why I like to run. I often get asked, “can I come running with you so I can start to love it too?” That question always gets me all panicky. At the gym, I’m the outgoing approachable person good for a laugh or watching someone squat low enough, but I’m a closet introvert through and through. Running allows me to have that alone time I seriously need and find my inner balance. Great and wonderful things happen in my head when I run (must be all the fresh air) and I can pretty much solve the world’s problems with an hour of running (ok, maybe not, but what’s for dinner and logistical scheduling gets done efficiently). I’ve had some health problems this year that have really kicked my feet from under me and I’ve wanted to quit CrossFit, I wanted to quit training, and I wanted to just quit.
    So, thank you for the post. It helps to know there are folks out there who just like to run for just more than running a race.

    • Mel says:

      I’m so glad you can relate to my blog — thanks for letting me know! Good on you for knowing what you need and thanks heavens for our ability to run, no?

  • Emily says:

    So much great stuff here. I usually run with a group, and when I do go on solo runs I always remember how much I like them … For just this reason! Also, when you said you’ve been reading about introversion, I assume you’ve read Quiet by Susan Cain, but if you haven’t, you definitely should. I have been recommending that book to everyone i know who has even the slightest introverted tendency!

  • Marcy says:

    I love that you’re always sharing your ‘journey’ with us – as cliche as that sounds. None of us has it figured out and there isn’t one right answer even for one person. We just keep refining and tinkering and trying to be our best selves every day.

    I still haven’t found a cool local yoga class so I’ve been meditating at home, but I’m totally following you on the rest.

    I need quiet time to think, time to be by myself to do creative things and listen to my music loud. I am also in the process of getting rid of clothes that don’t make me feel awesome while I whip up a few new skirts, dresses, and flirty tops.

    One thing I’m working on that you aren’t is making new friends. I thought of myself as an introvert but it turns out I just didn’t fit it. I love people and I go a little crazy if I don’t get to go out and socialize, so I’m needing to find more activities where I can meet people.

    • Mel says:

      That’s great that you’re actively working on cultivating new friendships. I have to remind myself to reach out to my friends because my introverted nature kind of compels me to curl up with books probably more often than I should!

      My husband Dave was on a mission a few years ago to make some new friends. He joined a book club, and has really loved it.

  • Maggie says:

    You know what, to get back to my real self, I lost the attitude. For me, trying to fit into boxes I didn’t like made me surly and bitter towards the people who liked those boxes. When I stopped judging others, I was able to embrace the genuine me and well, I don’t fit in any boxes.

    I’m the girl riding around on my horse in a boobalicious (thanks for the word) shirt listening to my ipod grinning like the cheshire cat. I’m the gal at the that brought 12 bikinis to the beach and has perfect hair and make up…. that is out boogie boarding. I eat and cook amazing paleo/primal meals and dig into ice cream. My exercise is whatever I feel like doing. I wear ridiculous platform shoes.

    No one else is like me, and I don’t mind. I love my type A competitive running friends. My sit at the spa friends, and my serious equestrian friends. But I am not them. I’m happiest being me. I’m not threatened by them, I don’t feel left behind by them. I think its cool that they get up at 5am to go run…. or sleep til noon then workout their credit cards. They don’t effect me.

    Soooooo… wear your new inappropriate clothes to Yoga and rockonwith your bad self. Embrace you- eccentricity is sexy!

    • Mel says:

      “When I stopped judging others, I was able to embrace the genuine me and well, I don’t fit in any boxes.”

      Love that. Right on.

      Ever since reading Brene Brown’s book, I’ve been trying to be compassionate and grateful — and that helps a lot.

  • Brittany says:


    I love this post! You are wise and patient and kind to yourself – being along for the ride on your ever-evolving journey is awesome.

    I walk like you run. I’ve been doing my best to get in at least 30 minutes of walking a day (but preferably an hour) no matter where I am – at work, at home, in a new city – and it’s made a world of difference in my disposition and happiness. I just recently realized that when my feet start moving, my mind becomes both activated and yet somehow freed to think and explore whatever it wants, which is bad-ass!

    Secondly, I think you should absolutely watch Moonrise Kingdom ASAP. It’s my favorite Wes Anderson film yet. You will love Suzy: she’s a moody 12-year-old who wears turquoise eyeliner and packs a suitcase full of mystery novels (and a kitten) on a camping trip. Check it out!

    Thanks for sharing your self with us on this blog. You are inspiring and wonderful.

    • Mel says:

      We’re going to see Moonrise Kingdom this weekend… can’t wait!

      Thank you so much for your sweet words; really appreciate it.

  • Melissa M says:

    This post made me really happy, for a couple of reasons. For one, you seem to be really happy with your plan to attack the summer in a new way, and that’s awesome. Secondly, and more selfishly, I felt like I could really relate to all this. I’ve had a hard time “getting my mind right” in general lately and have realized I need to start taking care of myself better mentally. (Physically I do ok.) Spending time along just hanging out, and also constructively thinking about life stuff, is important to that end.

    I would LOVE it if you got some feisty dye in those raven tresses. I just got some magenta/pink streaks woven into my reddish brown hair, and they are pretty fabulous! A friend of mine with long blonde hair got the ends dyed in pink and purple ombre… totally fantastic. I love it when women older than teenagers have fun hair.

    • Mel says:

      I’m making myself excited about the summer through sheer force of will 🙂

      But I have to admit, I’m kinda of excited to do my pink bangs again!

  • Katherine says:

    Love this post, too. Favorite line: “…and I kinda want to act like an asshole teenager this summer.” I am also an introvert who presents as an extrovert. I’m both, but boy do I need that alone time! It has been hard to come by lately as my husband was temporarily out of work for a few months and home, my 15-year-old just got out of school for the summer and my 27-year-old son dropped by for a week and it turned into three. He and his debris is everywhere — and the harmonic balance in the house is WAY off.

    I am listening to myself because what I’m hearing lately is telling me important information. I wrote a piece for a bigger publication and hated it. I worked on my novel, and jumped for joy. I have been doing some fitness competitions, and I haven’t loved them. I go to CrossFit, and jump for joy. The information is there if I listen to it, and it’s not clogged by hormones or sugar. Still working on some of that. And that’s OK.

    • Mel says:

      I love everything about this comment!

      And I feel you on this: “I wrote a piece for a bigger publication and hated it. I worked on my novel, and jumped for joy.”

      Every time I write a piece for someone else, I swear I’m not going to do it again because I don’t enjoy it as much as writing for my blog.

  • Linda Mallery says:

    When your health dictates some of what you do it complicates life. Hang in there, enjoying your post, hope you get back to Prague. My daughter enjoyed having you there, lots of fun photos, Crossfit Praha!

    take care

    • Mel says:

      “When your health dictates some of what you do it complicates life.” Thank you for that reminder! It’s been three years since my surgery, but I’m still getting used to the idea that things just don’t work like they used to.

  • Alisa Cochrane says:

    I’m slowly working my plan to get out from under the boot of state government as a poorly paid worker in an office with no windows! This post is inspirational and gives me hope that there will be an end to my madness one day!

  • sarah k. says:


    And the hair, the hair! You should do it again. I would worship you from afar.

    • Mel says:

      I’m doing it! And I’ll take interim pics and blog it so you can see how stupid I look with part of my hair wrapped in foil.

  • Tom R. says:

    I like this, especially the “just enough” concept. Do what you want and what your body says is right. We should all be so smart. Here’s hoping for a post or two a week about what Machine Gun Kelly is up to…

    Go kick a little ass (but only when you feel like kicking ass).

  • Cary says:

    Yay for Midsomer Murders!

  • Meghann says:

    I just *heart* you so much. Smooches and smashes, Meghann (once upon a time aka Anne Surly)

  • barb says:

    mel – another great post! Can you give a list of some of the books about introverts you’ve been reading? Midsommer murders are one of my tonics too. Have you watched the Dick Francis mysteries? – the good british one from the 70s, not the funky one that Ian McShane did as a precursor to Lovejoy.

  • Bethany says:

    Mel, I love this post! You are a true beauty both in boobalicious and non-boobalicious flavors! 😉

    Now you’ve got me thinking about ways to connect to my old, pre-mom self. Going out and hearing good music or having a great, sweaty night of dancing seem to do the trick, I should book a sitter and a date for one of these soon!

  • Lydia says:

    “I’m really an introvert that displays as an extrovert.”


    Also, I would love to go shopping with you. Le Sigh.

    Story time! I missed two weeks of CrossFit because of a Hashimoto’s flareup (boo). Last night was my first night back in the box, and there was only one other person in attendance for the 4:30 WOD. We introduced ourselves and she was nervous because she’d missed a month. I confessed to missing two weeks because of illness, and said we’d struggle through together. When she asked about what illness, I sorta hedged and said “Oh, I have a little autoimmune disease.” She squinted at me and said “Me, too. I have Hashimoto’s.”

    OMG NEW BFF SQUEE!!! We were so excited to meet a fellow Hashi-sufferer in person–and at CrossFit!

    So Mel, THANK YOU AGAIN for talking up CrossFit. Without your recommendations, I never would’ve given it a try. You are awesome. And you look all sorts of hot in those photos, there. Can’t wait to see the results of an updated photoshoot!

    • Mel says:

      Oh, yay! I’m so glad that you two found each other. That is AWESOME!

      And I’m so proud of you for taking the leap of faith and trying CrossFit. It’s all you, sweet pea.

      Updated photo shoot when my bangs are pink again!

  • kimberly says:

    the fuschia bangs are hot. ’nuff said. oh, and the boobies. wish i had ’em.

    • Mel says:

      Ya know, the boobies are fun sometimes, but not so great other times. I wish I could dial them up and down. Like… running, not so fun. CrossFit WODs, kind of annoying. Sexy dress, glad to have ’em.

      They should be optional.

  • AustinGirl says:

    1) I adore you. Thank you for this amazing blog and being such a great example for those of us who are out of our twenties but still bad asses. (and long may we reign, amen.)
    2) PLEASE get cool colors put in your hair! Not only does it look great on you, but those of us who can’t do that, will be able to dye our hair vicariously through you.
    3)Getting to the “real” me is something that I work on pretty actively. I’m happiest with messy hair, lots of jewelry and a funky skirt. I have a LOUD laugh and I love to swear. When I find myself getting tripped up by what I “should” be doing as a wife/employee/32 year old, I check to see if I “must” be doing that thing, or if it’s some remnant of other people’s expectations. If it doesn’t matter to me, doesn’t bother my husband or mess with my job, then game on. Much like learning to love your body, learning to love the real you, is a process.

  • Wow, this was great! Part of why I want to start my own business is the corporate overlord problem. Even though I do blue collar work, they “suggest” that tattoos get covered and hair is “approrpiate.” It’s dumb.

    On another note, my sister called me not long ago with a similar clothes story to yours. She’s been slowly pulling stuff outta her closet that is what other people have liked for her and not what she liked. She’s been really happy doing it. Every time we talk she mentions more things that she’s ditched and how she, too, has been getting some more “borderline inappropriate” clothes. I don’t like seeing my sister that way, but damn is she happy.

  • gogo says:

    I am in for the closet clean out!! That white cardigan that I bought to cover my tattoos in the office is going bye bye…I’m 40 and can still wear all black in the summer if I want to!

    • Mel says:

      YAY! All black in the summer. Me, too! I just ordered a bunch of new tops, and they’re all black or dark gray. WHATEVER! That’s what I like.

  • Kelly R. says:

    The timing of this blog post is impeccable. I am on the last day of a week-long vacation from life. After countless workouts where I was downright pissed every time I put on my Converse and having a meltdown where I completely lost my sh*t in a team meeting with my well-mannered Corporate Overlords, I decided I needed a break.

    I took a week where I made no commitments to friends or family or workouts. I also pushed back on work commitments that were not pressing. I’m not curing cancer here folks, so does this really HAVE to be done right now? I took the week to find my way back to my happy path.

    Here is what I did: got massages, cooked (lots of new recipes from Well Fed were brought out this week!), shopped, spring cleaning, planted flowers, enjoyed my patio, mani/pedi, read food blogs and just loved life.

    Here is what I learned: sometimes I need a break before I break. Life gets to be a bit much and I need to slow down when my body (and brain) tell me to rest. Life isn’t about the number of times I get to the gym or how fast I ride my bike. It isn’t about eating ice cream (well, only sometimes!) or beating my coworker out for a project that will mean working 60+ hours a week. Life is about what I do to stay happy and fulfilled. Today happiness is working from home while making meat & spinach muffins and cold cucumber noodles. I can’t wait to see what tomorrow will bring!

    • Mel says:

      Good for you, Kelly! This “sometimes I need a break before I break” is such a valuable thing to recognize. Sounds like your week of taking care of yourself was restorative. Right on!

  • Lindsay says:

    Mel, you are the BOMB. I love your humor and honest transparency. I’m right with you on so much of this…an introvert who daily masquerades as an extrovert, got some stinkin thyroid issues (trying 5/3/1 instead of my oh-how-I-love-thee Crossfit WODS), working through the body image stuff, and the list goes on. This post was a great reminder to me. This is where I am today (it’s a pretty good place, mind you!), but this is not where I will stay. And that’s part of the fun. Thanks for sharing your running revelations with us!
    PS: I sport a pixie cut with fuchsia (formerly purple, then blue) bangs. I support the funky hair color decision 🙂

    • Mel says:

      I really feel like 5/3/1 is saving my sanity since I can’t do CrossFit WODs right now, either. It’s just the right combo of really hard with sensible, right?!

      YAY, we’re sisters in solidarity with funny-colored bangs. I was wondering last night if I could do them fuchsia and orange somehow. Hmm….

  • DJDeeJay says:

    Realizing I was an introvert was one of the best things I could ever learn about myself. It’s such a misunderstood term. It’s not “shy” or “anti-social” or anything like that. Introverts can love being around people, we just also happen to find it tiring and need alone time to recuperate.

    Anyway, love this blog, find you totally inspiring, and now I need to scrutinize my closet for my best kick-ass clothes.

    Thank you so much for sharing so much of yourself.

  • JAM (@imjustamirror) says:

    Fuchsia bangs, yes. Maybe a few streaks in your pony tail to match. I WISH I could do the same, but given my current employment, I’ve settled for some subversive spectacles instead.

    I really relate to everything you’re saying here, particularly with regard to the extroverted introvert paradigm. I’m outgoing, social, yeah. But, really, what makes me THRIVE is having something for myself–sometimes some things really are all about me, and that’s OK. The trick, for me, is taking that energy and channeling it in to things that aren’t self-defeating–something I didn’t really have a grasp on when I was younger.

    I love your plan for the summer, especially throwing out the stuff in your closet that doesn’t make you feel awesome. My mom always told me: dress for the job (life) you want, not the job (life) you have. Wise woman.

    • Mel says:

      Oooh… maybe I’ll do some streaks underneath in the back so you can see them when I toss my head (with attitude) and wear my hair in a pony.

      I’m amazed at how many of us are really introverts but are kind of forced to hang with the extroverts. Interesting stuff.

  • Kelli in Cali says:

    I read your book and discovered your blog about a week ago and just want to say; I love, love, love your writing style and find you very inspiring.

    • Mel says:

      Hi, Kelli! So glad you found me. Thank you for taking the time to let me know you’re part of the crew ’round here. YAY!

      And thank you for your sweet words about my writing. That makes me ridiculously happy.

  • Tricia says:

    Loved today’s post.

    A) Totally dye the bangs! Those were so cute on you. I cannot pull it off, so I will live vicariously though you.

    B) Inappropriate-for-work clothes rock! I love flaunting the girls a bit every now and again. 🙂

    C) I’m loving the concept of Summer of Awesomeness. Just what I need I think. I’ve got a lot of un-awesome going on right now. I’ll start plotting mine now.

    • Mel says:

      A) I’m doing it soon!
      B) YAY!
      C) Do it! We have a big ol’ calendar going, and it’s turning into something really fun.

  • Monique says:

    Hi Melissa,

    I’ve never commented before, but I follow your blog (quietly), and love that your cookbook is now part of my recipe arsenal.

    But I had to stop stalking and comment on this entry, because it was so beautiful, and many of the topics really resonated with me. I just wanted to say that I’m grateful that you share your journey with us, because it always inspires me to think about my own in a new way.

    Lastly, you look totally hot in those photos! You should so rock those bangs again, because they’re killer.

    • Mel says:

      I’m so glad you commented — thank you! I’m thrilled that you like Well Fed… and I’m glad to share my struggles. We really are all in this together, figuring it out a little bit at a time.

      I’m definitely doing my bangs sometime in the next week. YAY!

  • Summer of Awesomeness. I want one! What a great, great post.

    • Mel says:

      Our Summer of Awesomeness plan is slowly coming together with movies, a J.Lo. concert (!), workouts, a fancy dinner for our annviversary… I really hate summer, but damn it! I’m going to enjoy it this year 🙂

  • De23 says:

    I’m very late to this party, but I just wanted to say I love this post and the concept of the Summer of Awesomeness. After school and all I’m now enjoying my CrossFit box, doing some reading and watching TV (I am loving watching reruns of The A-Team, and not I’m embarrassed to say it!). And I’m really loving this song by Jill Scott, “Golden.” To me it’s the song version of your post.

    • Mel says:

      Summer of Awesomeness is a pretty fun idea — and the best part if you can start ANY TIME. YAY!

      Thanks for the Jill Scott song!

  • tirzahrene says:

    I’m catching up on my blogs after a month of not being home, and this post was great. I don’t have answers for myself, but I’ll have a couple days on the train to do some serious thinking about what I need to do. I’m going to school full-time and working nearly full-time and I just saw my boyfriend off to Japan for a three-year posting and I’m about to have to take my hair back to brownish after I’ve been so happy for the last year with pink, purple, blue, turquoise, etc…. I’m dreading this, and I refuse to feel that way about my life. So thanks for a starting point for thinking!

    • Mel says:

      WOW! You’re in a big transition… exciting. What an opportunity to decide what’s next!

      Maybe you’ll LOVE your new hair. Let us know!

      • tirzahrene says:

        Thank you for the reminder that this is an opportunity! I’m trying to cultivate that mindset but I’m still spinning my wheels in the depths of a pout more often than not. It’s okay, I’ve got two more months of summer and sunshine to climb on top of things again.

        • Mel says:

          Oh! I wholeheartedly endorse some serious pouting along with the figuring out steps. Embracing the pout is a key step in moving forward. Hugs to you!

          • tirzahrene says:

            In brighter news, I just learned that you can color hair temporarily with chalk pastels. Life’s looking better already – and thanks for the hugs!