I Did It!

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

After many months of long study days, thousands of practice questions, and more sitting than I ever wish to do again in my life, I AM DONE WITH BOARDS. (at least until Step 2).

Some people have been asking HOW I prepared for boards but I'm going to hold off on that until I know how well I did. I would hate to give out poor advice! I will say that my school provided us with a program that we were required to complete. Lots of pros and cons to this that I'll be happy to discuss in the future. I also supplemented with UWorld, USMLERx and COMQUEST question banks and Pathoma. My ultimate point of reference was the med school bible aka First Aid. 

I have NO CLUE how things went yesterday. COMLEX is known for being very vague. There were a ton of questions where I was able to narrow it down to two answers. Praying that I made the right choices! Throughout the test I just felt so strange, not sure how else to describe it. The exam didn't feel like any of the practice I had done.  

Another issue of note. It was originally my plan to take both the MD boards (USMLE) and DO boards (COMLEX) but I eventually settled on just taking COMLEX. I wasn't confident enough that I could hit my USMLE goal and I didn't want to risk performing below average. Better to focus all my energy on doing as well on COMLEX as possible, than risk having two low scores. I hope I won't regret it! Honestly though, after taking one 8 hour exam I'm not sure where I would find the mental strength to take another. 

So...now we wait. I'm trying to resist the temptation to look up the answers to things or dwell on what I could have done better. It's over. Board scores are a pretty important portion of my future residency application and obviously I need to pass them to graduate! At this point there is nothing else I can do so I'm just gonna celebrate and enjoy life!

The next few weeks are going to be so FUN! This weekend one of my very best friends from med school is getting married in Louisville! After that we are going to Cincinnati for a few days before boarding a plane to SEATTLE! Ahhhh I'm so excited! 

We didn't get to go on a honeymoon after the wedding last year so we're taking our belated honeymoon/anniversary trip now. Why Seattle? Why not? We aren't really big beach vacation people so we decided to check out somewhere different. Our goal is to visit all the Major League Baseball parks - two years ago we went to Atlanta and now we'll check another off our list. 

After Seattle, I have hospital orientation and on July 6th I start my third year rotations. Life is flying by and I'm another step closer to becoming a doctor!

Also, don't forget that Weigh In Wednesday has been passed down to Winter @ No Drama Little Mama so go check that out and link up! As for me? I've been maintaining my Whole30 weight loss and slowly chipping away at my goals. The last week has been hit or miss with my workouts but I'm looking forward to the study-free life.

Saying Good-Bye to WIW

Wednesday, June 3, 2015

Pretty Strong Medicine

Hey!  Let's just right in to some news...today will be my last week hosting Weigh In Wednesday.

This link-up has changed a lot in the two years that I've been involved with it! We've had people linking up since day one (way before I started!) and lots of new faces that have become awesome supporters and friends.

My decision to give up hosting duties comes largely from the uncertainties of my future clinical rotation schedule. My participation in the link-up has been spotty at times during my pre-clinical years of med school so I can only imagine what things will be like when I'm taking call overnight and working a crazy schedule. I don't want to continue to put a half effort here when someone with more enthusiasm for the project would do much better than me!

My life has changed a lot since first starting this blog and joining the link-up. When I graduated college, I was the worst shape of my life. Bloated, puffy, sick looking. As I faced adulthood and life after college, I was so insecure and lacking any sort of confidence.  I spent the year after college gaining clinical experience, applying to medical school, and struggling to gain control over my life.

Slowly, through the help of this link-up and the many friends I've made along the way, something finally stuck. After years of yo-yo dieting, self-hatred, disordered eating, and crazy methods, I started to embrace moderation and self-efficacy that comes along with setting realistic goals and chipping away at them.

In the past two years, I've successfully lost nearly 50 pounds (so close!), ran 2 half marathons, and several 5K & 10Ks. I've started lifting weights and discovered Crossfit. I've embraced a "real food" approach to eating - one with healthy fats, complex carbs, protein, and tons of nutrients! (You can read my first WIW here). More than that, I've gotten engaged, married, moved to a new city, completed two years of medical school, and accomplished more than I ever thought possible.

With all these wonderful accomplishments to look back on, I know that I'm not done yet. From a health perspective, weight still needs to be lost. Races still need to be run. Weights still need to be lifted. Yoga poses need to be held (I tried...). I have a career to begin and a family to start (not yet!). I'm not done here but I need a chance to share it with you all on my own terms.

Weight is no longer the singular focus in my life. It actually means very little to me compared to how well I sleep or how high my energy is for the day. Food isn't just comfort or a security blanket for me anymore - it's fuel to power through my workouts and study sessions. Workouts aren't just something I do to lose weight now. I workout to feel ALIVE and strong. More often than not, my workouts are my favorite part of the day! Most days, I wake up ready to tackle the day. I'm starting to feel the confidence that being about to back squat over 200 lbs brings. I feel powerful knowing that two years ago, I never thought I could run a mile, let alone 13! I feel strong knowing that I can make healthier choices but also enjoy life at the same time.

With all that said I will continue to link up with you all, just not as a host. I'm ready to continue my journey on my own and share other aspects of my life besides weight. I will of course update you when I reach the next milestones of my journey. And since we know I'm not the most consistent blogging, please come follow me over on Instagram  (@prettystrongmed) or Twitter since that's where I do most of my updating these days!

Winter will continue to host the link-up from now on so make sure you check her out over at No Drama, Little Mama. I suspect she will be looking for a couple co-hosts to help her so shoot her an email if you are interested!