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Women Are Sharing What It’s Been Like To Experience Quarantine Weight Gain And It’s Pretty Encouraging

No lie, if you haven’t had your weight fluctuate in quarantine, you’re a lone wolf.

Days spent alone, and at home with a fridge will undoubtedly lead to some strange eating habits. After all comfort food recipes and bread-making trends are on the rise. God knows the liquor stores are doing better than most storefronts in our current economy. The “Quarantine 15” is real.

Fortunately, women on Reddit are being open and honest about how they’re dealing with their bodies in quarantine.

From weight gain to weight loss it’s all here.

Check out some of the most relatable experiences below.

“Personal trainer here. I can tell you that we on the other side are feeling the exact same thing. All of my friends that are trainers have put on weight during the pandemic. We are all stressed and afraid of losing our jobs. (Nyc based). Not too mention we were supposed to be the ones saying let’s keep training and being fit. We all hit a wall in April and essentially ate our feelings. No shame. I told many clients that your only job right now is to survive the pandemic. If that includes cookies then by all means. If you deal with anyone in the industry that said otherwise, they are straight up lying to you. Compassion is the name of the game. I myself put in 16lbs and am slowing trying to take it off because I’m not a fan of being squishy. I actually got off of Instagram for a while because of all the shame of not working out and eating well during a pandemic. Don’t let them fool you! We are all having a hard time and weight gain is perfectly normal for such high stress times!

Edit- omg I didn’t think this would be so popular! I’m saddened by the amount of people who have had to deal with so much shame during a pandemic! I hope that everyone sees we are indeed all in the same boat! Please go easy on yourselves. Lots of virtual hugs guys!” –mfsbiwti

“Same. I am a Personal Trainer myself and after years of exercising consistently, this is the first time I stopped for a few months. It has shattered my mental health, I put on weight, just not feeling like myself. I lost clients and my job due to covid, unfortunately. I am just now getting back into working out and boy, is it tough. Before I was on a 6 day split each week, never missed a day, now I’m lucky if I go 3 days a week. Losing my job and clients also pushed me to go get out of the game for a bit and go back to school… I feel this though. It is okay to not prioritize a consistent routine when we are essentially in survival mode with everything going on. Although, this doesnt mean to not be mindful of your health – its just that there are some other obvious priorities in the world right now.”- psyched622

“Thank you for mentioning surviving the pandemic. Although we want to stay healthy for survival, our nature is to try to keep/gain weight to survive. We are under a lot of stress and our bodies are responding the way they know how to respond. This is all a very natural response, therefore there is no shame in it. And to try to override our nature during a very stressful time is just going to make the stress soooo much worse. If you need a piece of chocolate to help relax, do it, because you can lose the weight later in the long run you’ll be better for it keeping your sanity now.”-Becbanama

“I have gained a little bit of weight (few pounds) but I have also been finding a lot of joy in cooking nice meals and this has actually reduced a lot of stress for me. I think we all need to give ourselves a bit of a break – this is probably the most stressful experience many of us will go through collectively in our lives!”- Ambry

“Not well to be honest. I put on the pants I planned to wear to my tiny Thanksgiving event and they were a bit tight. It for sure sent me into a tailspin. So I am cleaning up my diet by adding more protein, more veggies, and less (not eliminating) refined carbs and sugar like candy. I’m also trying to get in 30 min of exercise, usually walking or a YouTube class, in a few days a week. I’m trying to be gentle with myself. I cleared my Instagram feed of “fitspo,” shopping accounts that have teeny tiny models, and filled it with art and design accounts.” –noshitnancydrew

“I can’t even count my calories rn, and for me it’s a huge deal (for sure I got issues lol). But rn I’m just like fuck everything, there’s a pandemic going on and I don’t fucking care. So yep I’m just eating desserts, fried food and other unhealthy stuff. But seriously, good for those who are getting their exercise, in times like these, let’s just all survive, even if we gain couple of kg. And rn I think I’ve got corona, and I’m just stressed about the test.”-mrinalini3

“I gained most of my weight (20 lb) before COVID when I was sick, I started dropping it during COVID and gained some back and dropped and gained some back and dropped. Right now I’m down maybe 8 lbs.

  1. I have to believe that regardless I look good. Even when the clothes don’t fit. Even when I’m bigger than others. I try to find the positive in my appearance than the negative. I have to retrain my eye and my thinking. I look at what I like over what I dislike.
  2. The scale lies. I stick with measurements if I go with anything. But I try to always go back to No. 1. Even when I don’t like the numbers, find what I do like.
  3. If your weight weighs on you too much, it doesn’t matter what you weigh, it will never be enough.
  4. Crash diets will fail you. Anything extreme will fail you. If you want to make changes, focus on No. 1 and on habits you can do consistently; things you like and appreciate because of how you feel.
  5. Confidence is more attractive than anything else.
  6. Social media lies.
  7. Everyone is in the same boat. Everyone struggles with weight and their appearance. Be kind to each other.”- catricya

“I 100% agree with all of this, but especially #1 and #3. I know I’ve gained weight during this pandemic (with a weigh in during a doctors visit to prove it) and one thing I had to ask myself was am I unhappy with how I look or with the actual number? My clothes may be a little noticeably tighter but I don’t look much different than I did before the pandemic. In reality, the changes have been marginal despite the immense amount of stress I’ve found myself under during this time and the fact that a little weight gain might be the only lasting affect of this pandemic on my body has made me really thankful.” –DisasterWarning96

“I’ve had to convince myself exercise is non-negotiable just like taking out the trash.

That being said, I’m quite lazy and quarantine is rough so I set my exercise goals fairly low. I have an Apple Watch so it calculates my average exercise minutes over the past 90 days. I try to do at least the average number of minutes every day, but preferably 1 minute more than that. I’ll do more if I’m feeling extra motivated. At the beginning of quarantine, my average was like 8 minutes. Now I’m up to 23, but because I’ve been increasing the time little by little it barely seems like I’ve increased it.

The average also helps me not feel like I need to beat myself up for missing a day. At the same time, for the first time in my life I feel like I can understand the people who say they feel weird when they don’t work out, so I try not to miss more than one day.” –HarmlessHeffalump

“I’ve gained a few and lost a few during lockdown. I started couchto5k in May and after running 5km in 45 mins I gave up on running because…well I just don’t wanna! Since then I have gradually built this up to trying to walk 5-10km a day. Sometimes during these walks I’ll jog for 30 secs and then walk again if I’ve had too much coffee lol. I’ve maybe lost a couple pounds but I’m doing it more to get out of the house and for my mental health. I feel much better mentally when I get out and move everyday. 1-2 days not leaving the house makes me feel depressed.”- MissEssquire

“As an anorexic, I’ve been on a rollercoaster. I’ve gained weight (on purpose mainly). I can’t be bothered to go into how it’s effected me as you can probably guess. Anyway this is what’s helped me

  1. get rid of clothes that don’t fit. It will just make you sad. If you can afford it thrift or buy some clothes that actually fit.
  2. don’t weigh yourself. So what if you’ve gained 4kg if you can’t see it? If you know you’ve gained weight you’ll look for the extra fat is that makes sense
  3. think positive thoughts about your body. Beauty is so much more than being a certain weight
  4. don’t body check, think about your body, or analyse it in the mirror. All you need is a quick glance in the morning. The more you stare the more fault you’ll find

This is what’s helped me, I think I probably suffer from body dysmorphia but hope this helps some of you.” – nebbyyyx

“I’ve gained 35 lbs in quarantine despite a 6x a week exercise routine, and last week finally woke up to falling back into old compulsive habits with using food for comfort/entertainment. I previously lost 220 lbs because I let this get really, really out of control. I realized I’m on that trajectory and it’s time to snap out of it before I lose all that hard work.

I have been working with my therapist on intuitive eating principles, and I’m doing great at eating whatever I want within my dietary restrictions (health reasons.) So, that’s halfway there…

But I have been eating a lot of snacks between meals when I’m not hungry and ordering calorie dense delivery food – to avoid feelings, to cheer me up, etc. It’s really easy to overlook how much that impacts my weight when it feels so comforting. So my focus has been become letting myself eat whatever my body wants, but only when I am truly physically hungry. And to use other coping skills.

I’ve lost 5 lbs already. Gonna try to stay focused on following my body’s hunger signals.”-awholedamngarden

“I’m a therapist. We are in uncharted territory here…all of us. Just be kind to yourself. If that means burying yourself in a tub of cookie dough, go for it. If it means working out, awesome. If it means slamming IV drugs…please don’t do that…get some help. Most of us are in survival mode and have been for months and there is no end in sight. Comparing yourself to others is a slippery slope. Drink more water, try to get good sleep, reach out for help when you need it, and be kind to yourself. I’m rooting for all of you!!

Edit: obligatory thank you for the awards, they are very kind and I am glad my words may have helped or made some of you feel less alone.”- katat25

“Not well. I wore my jeans one day when it was cold and they were tight. I haven’t worn jeans again in weeks. Mostly because it’s been warm enough to wear shorts but when it’s cool I wear sweatpants. I also don’t go anywhere so I have no desire or need to wear jeans around the house or to get drive thru.

I had a pretty bad spiral one night that really scared me. I haven’t had any suicidal ideation in like six or seven years so to suddenly think that it’d be better for me to just die than live with having gained weight was startling. It’s still haunting me a little bit. I’ve always used food to cope with depression and anxiety and being locked up in my apartment dealing with mounting school stress is not leading to me eating healthy. Salads don’t have the same comforting feeling as bean burritos.

I want to find a therapist but I just moved to a new city on top of COVID so I’m struggling with where to go from here.”- uraniumstingray

“In the past seven months I have:

  • gained half a stone
  • then lost it again
  • then gained it again
  • then lost it again
  • now I’ve gained it again

I’m just being kind to myself. I think the biggest reason I keep gaining it, is that when I bake, I’m then home all day with no one to share with (boyfriend follows a keto diet. Normally I would have taken some baking into the office to share) and there’s a tray of brownies in the kitchen and if I don’t eat them within three days, they’ll go bad. So of course, I eat them all.

I’ve just made a rule for myself that when I’ve put on the half a stone, I have to stop baking. If the cycle of losing it and gaining it again continues for however long lock down does, well, it could be worse.

I’m a recovered anorexic, so for about the last decade, I’ve had this half a stone buffer that I allow myself. It generally stops me from weighing myself obsessively. I aim to be at the lower end of the half a stone, but I ‘allow myself’ to go up to the higher end of the half a stone which means I don’t have to obbsess over what I eat or what I weigh because I have a buffer in place. When I hit the buffer, then I’ll do something about it. When there isn’t a pandemic, I usually hit the top end once a year and then go back down to the lower end. So, bouncing up and down four times in one year is…somewhat drastic. But again, it could be worse.” –TheRecklessOne

“Not very well tbh. On one hand I am baking and cooking every day, singing and trying new stuff, and I feel like Snowwhite. I have a lemon cake on the table waiting for me right now, and life is good.

On the other hand, guilty is burning a hole of anxiety in my chest. I looked at myself while passing next to a mirror and I felt so very bad. It would take a hell of workouts to be back as last year, and I dread the moment.”- Arywar

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This Artist Has Been Breaking Barriers As A Non-Traditional Mariachi

Entertainment

This Artist Has Been Breaking Barriers As A Non-Traditional Mariachi

Courtesy of Timothy Pollard

On a recent episode of ABC’s game show To Tell The Truth, three celebrity panelists were tasked to uncover the identity of a real mariachi singer.

Each contender embodied “non-traditional” attributes of mariachi culture either through physical appearance or language barriers, leaving the panelists stumped.

When it came time for the big reveal, with a humble smile 53-year-old Timoteo “El Charro Negro” stood up wowing everyone. Marveled by his talents, Timoteo was asked to perform unveiling his smooth baritone voice.

While not a household name in the U.S., his career spans over 25 years thriving on the catharsis of music.

Timoteo “El Charro Negro” performing “Chiquilla Linda” on Dante Night Show in 2017.

Originally from Dallas, Texas, Timoteo, born Timothy Pollard, moved to Long Beach, California with his family when he was eight years old. The move to California exposed Pollard to Latin culture, as the only Black family in a Mexican neighborhood.

As a child, he recalled watching Cantinflas because he reminded him of comedian Jerry Lewis, but musically he “got exposed to the legends by chance.”

“I was bombarded by all the 1960s, ’70s, and ’50s ranchera music,” Timoteo recalls to mitú.

The unequivocal passion mariachi artists like Javier Solis and Vicente Fernandez possessed heavily resonated with him.

“[The neighbors] always played nostalgic music, oldies but goodies, and that’s one thing I noticed about Mexicans,” Timoteo says. “They can be in their 20s but because they’ve grown up listening to the oldies it’s still very dear to them. That’s how they party.”

For as long as he can remember, Pollard “was born with the genetic disposition to love music,” knowing that his future would align with the arts.

After hearing Vicente Fernandez sing “Lástima Que Seas Ajena,” an awakening occurred in Pollard. While genres like hip-hop and rap were on the rise, Pollard’s passion for ranchera music grew. It was a moment when he realized that this genre best suited his big voice.

Enamored, Pollard began to pursue a career as a Spanish-language vocalist.

El Charro Negro
Photo courtesy of Timothy Pollard.

At 28, Timoteo began learning Spanish by listening and singing along to those artists he adored in his youth.

“When I decided that I wanted to be a mariachi, I didn’t think it was fair to exploit the culture and not understand the language,” he says. “If I’m going to sing, I need to be able to communicate with my audience and engage with them. I need to understand what I’m saying because it was about honor and respect.”

Pollard began performing local gigs after picking up the language in a matter of months. He soon attracted the attention of “Big Boy” Radio that adorned him the name Timoteo “El Charro Negro.”

Embellishing his sound to highlight his Black heritage, Pollard included African instruments like congas and bongos in his orchestra. Faintly putting his own spin on a niche genre, Pollard avoided over-saturating the genre’s sound early in his career.

Embraced by his community as a beloved mariachi, “El Charro Negro” still encountered race-related obstacles as a Black man in the genre.

“There are those [in the industry] who are not in the least bit thrilled to this day. They won’t answer my phone calls, my emails, my text messages I’ve sent,” he says. “The public at large hasn’t a problem with it, but a lot of the time it’s those at the helm of decision making who want to keep [the genre] exclusively Mexican.”

“El Charro Negro” persisted, slowly attracting fans worldwide while promoting a message of harmony through his music.

In 2007, 12 years into his career, Pollard received a golden ticket opportunity.

El Charro Negro
Pollard (left) seen with legendary Mexican artist Vicente Fernandez (right) in 2007. Photo courtesy of Timothy Pollard.

In a by-chance encounter with a stagehand working on Fernandez’s tour, Pollard was offered the chance to perform onstage. The singer was skeptical that the offer was legit. After all, what are the chances?

The next day Pollard went to his day job at the time and said, “a voice in my head, which I believe was God said, ‘wear your blue velvet traje tonight.'”

That evening Pollard went to a sold-out Stockton Area where he met his idol. As he walked on the stage, Pollard recalls Fernandez insisting that he use his personal mic and band to perform “De Que Manera Te Olvido.”

“[Fernandez] said he did not even want to join me,” he recollects about the show. “He just was kind and generous enough to let me sing that song on his stage with his audience.”

The crowd applauded thunderously, which for Pollard was a sign of good things to come.

El Charro Negro
Timoteo “El Charro Negro” with Don Francisco on Don Francisco Presenta in 2011. Photo courtesy of Timothy Pollard.

In 2010, he released his debut album “Me Regalo Contigo.” In perfect Spanish, Pollard sings with great conviction replicating the soft tones of old-school boleros.

Unraveling the rollercoaster of relationships, heart-wrenchingly beautiful ballads like “Me Regalo Contigo” and “Celos” are his most streamed songs. One hidden gem that has caught the listener’s attention is “El Medio Morir.”

As soon as the track begins it is unlike the others. Timoteo delivers a ’90s R&B love ballad in Spanish, singing with gumption as his riffs and belts encapsulate his unique sound and story.

Having appeared on shows like Sabado Gigante, Don Francisco Presenta, and Caso Cerrado in 2011, Timoteo’s career prospered.

Timoteo hasn’t released an album since 2010 but he keeps his passion alive. The singer has continued to perform, even during the Covid pandemic. He has high hopes for future success and original releases, choosing to not slow down from his destined musical journey.

“If God is with me, who can be against me? It may not happen in a quick period of time, but God will make my enemies my footstool,” he said.

“I’ve continued to be successful and do some of the things I want to do; maybe not in a particular way or in particular events, but I live in a very happy and fulfilled existence.”

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Exclusive: Luis Fonsi Talks Working with Rauw Alejandro, Christina Aguilera, and Demi Lovato

Entertainment

Exclusive: Luis Fonsi Talks Working with Rauw Alejandro, Christina Aguilera, and Demi Lovato

UNIVERSAL MUSIC LATIN

Luis Fonsi is kicking off 2021 with a new single. The Puerto Rican superstar premiered the music video for “Vacío” on Feb. 18 featuring rising Boricua singer Rauw Alejandro. The guys put a new spin on the classic “A Puro Dolor” by Son By Four.

Luis Fonsi throws it back to his románticas.

“I called Omar Alfanno, the writer of ‘A Puro Dolo,’ who is a dear friend,” Fonsi tells Latido Music. “I told him what my idea was [with ‘Vacío’] and he loved it. He gave me his blessing, so I wrote a new song around a few of those lines from ‘A Puro Dolor’ to bring back that nostalgia of those old romantic tunes that have been a part of my career as well. It’s a fresh production. It sounds like today, but it has that DNA of a true, old-school ballad.”

The world got to know Luis Fonsi through his global smash hit “Despacito” with Daddy Yankee in 2017. The remix with Canadian pop star Justin Bieber took the song to new heights. That was a big moment in Fonsi’s music career that spans over 20 years.

There’s more to Fonsi than “Despacito.”

Fonsi released his first album, the fittingly-titled Comenzaré, in 1998. While he was on the come-up, he got the opportunity of a lifetime to feature on Christina Aguilera’s debut Latin album Mi Reflejo in 2000. The two collaborated on “Si No Te Hubiera Conocido.” Luis Fonsi scored multiple Billboard Hot Latin Songs No. 1s in the years that followed and one of the biggest hits was “No Me Doy Por Vencido” in 2008. That was his career-defining romantic ballad.

“Despacito” remains the second most-viewed music video on YouTube with over 7.2 billion views. The hits did not stop there. Later in 2017, he teamed up with Demi Lovato for “Échame La Culpa,” which sits impressively with over 2 billion views.

He’s also appearing on The Voice next month.

Not only is Fonsi working on his new album, but also he’s giving advice to music hopefuls for the new season of The Voice that’s premiering on March 1. Kelly Clarkson tapped him as her Battle Advisor. In an exclusive interview, Fonsi talked with us about “Vacío,” The Voice, and a few of his greatest hits.

What was the experience like to work with Rauw Alejandro for “Vacío”?

Rauw is cool. He’s got that fresh sound. Great artist. Very talented. Amazing onstage. He’s got that great tone and delivery. I thought he had the perfect voice to fit with my voice in this song. We had talked about working together for awhile and I thought that this was the perfect song. He really is such a star. What he’s done in the last couple of years has been amazing. I love what he brought to the table on this song.

Now I want to go through some of your greatest hits. Do you remember working with Christina Aguilera for her Spanish album?

How could you not remember working with her? She’s amazing. That was awhile back. That was like 1999 or something like that. We were both starting out and she was putting out her first Spanish album. I got to sing a beautiful ballad called “Si No Te Hubiera Conocido.” I got to work with her in the studio and see her sing in front of the mic, which was awesome. She’s great. One of the best voices out there still to this day.

What’s one of your favorite memories of “No Me Doy Por Vencido”?

“No Me Doy Por Vencido” is one of the biggest songs in my career. I think it’s tough to narrow it down just to one memory. I think in general the message of the song is what sticks with me. The song started out as a love song, but it turned into an anthem of hope. We’ve used the song for different important events and campaigns. To me, that song has such a powerful message. It’s bigger than just a love song. It’s bringing hope to people. It’s about not giving up. To be able to kind of give [people] hope through a song is a lot more powerful than I would’ve ever imagined. It’s a very special song.

I feel the message is very relevant to the COVID-19 pandemic we’re living through.

Oh yeah! I wrote that song a long time ago with Claudia Brant, and during the first or second month of the lockdown when we were all stuck at home, we did a virtual writing session and we rewrote “No Me Doy Por Vencido.” Changing the lyrics, kind of adjusting them to this situation that we’re living now. I haven’t recorded it. I’ll do something with it eventually. It’s really cool. It still talks about love. It talks about reuniting. Like the light at the end of the tunnel. It has the hope and love backbone, but it has to do a lot with what we’re going through now.

What do you think of the impact “Despacito” made on the industry?

It’s a blessing to be a part of something so big. Again, it’s just another song. We write these songs and the moment you write them, you don’t really know what’s going to happen with them. Or sometimes you run into these surprises like “Despacito” where it becomes a global phenomenon. It goes No. 1 in places where Spanish songs had never been played. I’m proud. I’m blessed. I’m grateful to have worked with amazing people like Daddy Yankee. Like Justin Bieber for the remix and everyone else involved in the song. My co-writer Erika Ender. The producers Mauricio Rengifo and Andrés Torres. It was really a team effort and it’s a song that obviously changed my career forever.

What was the experience like to work with Demi Lovato on “Echáme La Culpa”?

She’s awesome! One of the coolest recording sessions I’ve ever been a part of. She really wanted to sing in Spanish and she was so excited. We did the song in Spanish and English, but it was like she was more excited about the Spanish version. And she nailed it! She nailed it from the beginning. There was really not much for me to say to her. I probably corrected her once or twice in the pronunciation, but she came prepared and she brought it. She’s an amazing, amazing, amazing vocalist.

You’re going to be a battle advisor on The Voice. What was the experience like to work with Kelly Clarkson?

She’s awesome. What you see is what you get. She’s honest. She’s funny. She’s talented. She’s humble and she’s been very supportive of my career. She invited me to her show and it speaks a lot that she wanted me to be a part of her team as a Battle Advisor for the new season. She supports Latin music and I’m grateful for that. She’s everything you hope she would be. She’s the real deal, a true star, and just one of the coolest people on this planet.

What can we expect from you in 2021?

A lot of new music. Obviously, everything starts today with “Vacío.” This is literally the beginning of what this new album will be. I’ve done nothing but write and record during the last 10 months, so I have a bunch of songs. Great collaborations coming up. I really think the album will be out probably [in the] third or fourth quarter this year. The songs are there and I’m really eager for everybody to hear them.

Read: We Finally Have A Spanish-Language Song As The Most Streamed Song Of All Time

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