I believe in manicures. I believe in overdressing. I believe in primping at leisure and wearing lipstick. I believe in pink. I believe happy girls are the prettiest girls. I believe that tomorrow is another day, and... I believe in miracles. ~Audrey Hepburn
So tonight, after work, I was finally peer pressured into facing my irrational fear of sculpt head-on. I know what you're thinking. What is so scary about sculpt? And to be honest, I'm not entirely sure. What I do know is that I have heard so many horror stories, and while I am an active person, I am so very afraid of living one of those horror stories firsthand.
Sure, I run and crossfit on a regular basis. I dabble in yoga and barre. But sculpt, the masochistic combination of flow and weights and cardio and dance all jam-packed into one sixty-minute class, makes me stomach churn.
But as I will try (almost) anything once, I committed to go. I tried to back out. I packed three outfits. I nervously peed ever ten minutes. I had sweaty armpits. I felt barfy. But I went.
The studio was like 900 degrees. And crowded. And I was surrounded by my coworkers, all who sculpt on the regular. I was terrified.
the 5lb weights were merely for show
Jessie, who I can only describe as a masochistic, dancing machine, super hottie, took us through 60 of the brutal-est yoga-esque minutes in my life. Fast feet. High knees. KICK KICK KICK. Crescent...deeper, deeper, deeper....HOLD. Chatarunga. Repeat. Push up. Plank. Mountain Climbers. FASTER. Slower. Hold. FML. My muscles cried, my coordination was tested, I desperately tried to breathe and keep up. It was like a cracked out dance party with weights. And somehow, she made it look good. Real good.
The thing of it is, I feel like I am dying during these types of classes. My breathe is short, my shoulders hurt, my quads quiver, and I generally feel miserable. But somehow, the day after, I'm never sore (at least not from barre). In the moment, I cannot push through. I cannot seem to hold things quite deep enough for quite long enough, and I bail on the weights from time to time. I know...get comfortable with being uncomfortable. I get it, but cannot seem to do it.
Did I barf? Nope. Would I go back? Maybe. Will this be my sweat of choice? No.
As my luck would have it, I woke up sick the day I had to fly to Boston. Sore throat, stuffy nose, foggy head, yuck. Not that I was going to let that put a damper on my trip, especially when god invented DayQuil.
Two uneventful flights later, I was rendezvous-ing with my other Ragnarly peeps and headed to the startline hotel for some NyQuil and sleep.
Today after our meetings and race prep, we headed into Boston to check out a few of the sights.
I can only assume that when it Boston, you are automatically a Red Sox fan.
The closest I'll ever get to the Boston marathon finishing line...
Dinner and early to bed wrap up my day as I have an early morning, and a long day, tomorrow.
A year ago today we put the final odds and ends into the moving truck and said goodbye to our lives in Madison.
I remember all too well saying goodbye to my bestfriend and crying for the first hour of the drive. I remember feeling ready to leave Madison, but not feeling like Minneapolis was the right move. I remember wishing we could turn around and cancel the entire move. I remember people telling me how many amazing opportunities there would be for me in Minneapolis, and how great the city is. I remember the relief of knowing that we would never have to see our terrible realtor after closing.
I wish I could say that so far this adventure has been amazing, but it hasn't. I'm still looking for the right job, I'm still getting lost everywhere I go, I'm still trying to make friends, I'm still trying to accept the fact that this is my home.
Yes, there are things I like about Minneapolis. Taking the lightrail downtown. Running to the Minnehaha Falls. Sushi at Wakame. Tangletown Crossfit. But I would not hesitate for a minute to pack it all up and move.
Maybe someday this city will feel like home, but it doesn't yet.
In this day and age, I think we can all agree that there is an incredible amount of pressure on women to look a certain way.
You skin should be effortlessly flawless.
You waist should be small, your curves should be ample (and perky!).
Your legs should be long and lean, and there should most certainly be a gap between your thighs.
Your hair should glisten.
You should never smell bad. Or sweat.
The list goes on and on.
It's not easy to be woman when ever actress, model, and "reality tv" star, seems to role out of bed runway ready. But what kills me, is how the average woman interacts and treats other women.
Yesterday at work I had the pleasure of helping a guest who was shopping for a friend. A friend I quickly learned had just had a baby. Fitted clothing were not an option because she didn't want her friend to feel self conscious about her new, post-baby, body. She reiterated to me that her friend had just had a baby, only this time she said:
"She just had a baby...so she looks like you, you know?"
No actually, I don't know. But I was too stunned to do much more than smile and nod. And then I proceeded to try on the clothing she had chosen so that she could see what the clothing would like like on a post-baby body.
Lest there be any confusion, no, I have not recently (or ever) had a baby. I have no delusions of being thin. I'm curvy, I always have been. Given the day, I might even have a bit lot of the dreaded muffin top peeking out of my waistband.
Yes, I know I could stand to lose a few pounds. Yes, I know I could stand to clean up my diet a bit. Yes, I know I so far from society's ideal woman we might not even be from the same society. But I work out (a lot). And I work every day at making better food choices. And I do my damnedest to thumb my nose at the unrealistic expectations of society.
But what kills me, is why one woman would say something like that to another woman. Shouldn't we all be on the same team, working to build one another up, not tear one another down? Do we not realize the impact of our words and the hurt that they can cause? Why do we not work on building one another up rather than take any chance to tear each other down.
I challenge all the ladies out there to say something sincere and kind to another woman tomorrow. And the day after that. And every day after that. Take a moment to compliment their amazing shoes, their great shirt, the sparkle of the ring, their hard work at the gym/studio/box, their "Madonna arms." As a society we need to work on building each other up.
Be kind to one another, because society and media is hard enough for all of us.
And if this is what a post-baby body looks like, what's the big deal?!
Remember last October when I was cautiously excited to take on a new career? It was an industry I knew and love, products I was familiar with, but a new spin on things. I was taking on the sales side of things versus marketing. And I was taking it on with a rep group that seemed incredibly excited to have me. Full disclosure. W and I both knew of this rep group. We had worked competitively with them in the same industry for over a decade. They did not have a good reputation, nor were they well liked. But seeing as I had be looking for a career in Minneapolis since before we made the move, I decided to give it a try. You can't believe everything you hear, right? Turns out, the rumors weren't true. The reality was much, much worse. My second week on the job, my boss, one of the principles of the group, told me I was full figured and too big to fit in our lines (not true, I was a L), followed by stating that at his age he can say whatever the hell he wants. He also told me that seem week that he wasn't sure I was going to work out. Seeing as he had been in the office less than 3 days with me since I started, I wasn't sure what this was based on, but I was determined to prove him wrong. A few weeks later I headed on my first business trip with the group, to LA for the fall '14 preview with one of our brands (the very same trip where I developed Trigeminal Neuralgia). Things seemed to go well, despite the searing pain in my face. The next week I totaled my car. Which was far from awesome, but was made infinitely worse by my boss telling me that I need a car and that not having one is reason to let me go.A week later we had another sit down where we discussed whether or not I was able to handle the stress of the job. The stress of the job? Yes, that I could handle. The stress of a boss telling me I was fat every other week, a totaled car, a nerve disorder, and another threat of being fired? That was maybe a bit much. But I begged and pleaded for him to give me an opportunity to do the job and prove that I was a valuable part of the group. Did I mention the time he told me that I was a "big girl" like the purchaser he was trying to send samples to, but where she was muscular and worked out, I was just big? That moment was not just shared with me and my boss, but with two of my office mates. I'd like to think we bonded over that moment.
It had already occurred to me that taking this job was obviously a very, very bad decision. That I had unknowingly put myself in a very unhealthy and unhappy situation. But I felt it was in my best interest to dig deep and hang in there until I could get my resume out there. The office closes for the holidays, so I took the opportunity to work from home and study up for the upcoming shows and events. I came back to work energized, knowing that my ability to work an event was solid. Set up and take down? Piece of cake! I was confident that I would turn things around that week. And things went well, other than the fact my boss ominous hovering over me literally gave me an anxiety attack one of the days. Or so I thought. I came in bright an early the following Monday, ready to send out my follow up emails and confirm my appointments for the next week...only to find my boss sitting in my office waiting to let me go. Things just weren't working out for him. He thinks the world of me, and would be happy to write a glowing letter of rec for me. Blah, blah, blah. I managed to gracefully pack up my desk and leave the building without telling him where he could put his letter of rec. I've had a few days now to think things over. I wish things could have ended on my terms, but I know it was for the best. The environment was hostile and unhealthy. Saying it wasn't a good fit is an incredible understatement. All I can do now is learn from the situation, and move on. As my girl Kelly would say...
So if you know of an amazing marketing or events opportunity for a hardworking, passionate, creative, gal in the Twin Cities let me know! Bonus points if it's in the outdoor or cycling industry!!