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Advice My 30’s Self Would Give To My 20’s Self

January 29, 2016 2 comments

I often think about how awesome it would be if I were able to get advice from myself in the future. Future-me could tell present-day me that new job I  left my old, comfortable job for was a smart choice, or whether or not “planking” for pictures will stick around as a trend. (Do you guys remember planking? What hipster bullshit was that?)

In life, the only way to gain insight is to live through challenging situations that create character. But as an anxiety-prone person I just want to know:

Am I doing life right?

That being said, now that I’ve left my 20’s behind, survived them really, and I’ve reflected on some choices that if I had the ability I’d go back and advise about I would. Some serious, and some not.

I’d have a productive little chat with my sweet, dumb 20’s self:

1. Hey girl, just tell your friends you don’t like nightclubs

I cannot tell you how many mind-numbingly loud, smoky, dance floors you will be dragged across, but it will be a lot. There will be $20 vodka-crans, men with frosted tip hair and Ed Hardy clothing. My God the Ed Hardy. This isn’t your scene and you should just simply tell your friends that.

club

You’ll smile for pictures and dance but you’re faking it. You will witness a woman wearing an Ann Taylor pantsuit hump the face of her companion so hard she breaks his nose on stage at Opera Nightclub, and that will still not be the end of your night. Those girls you met while waiting in the bathroom line are not your new best friends. Go home, old soul.

2.Hey girl, if you have a good boss and job, appreciate how rare that is

There will be an opportunity for you to leave a good job, and a boss who had your best interest at heart, for one that is more exciting. You won’t fit the new company, and the company won’t fit you. You’ll be laid off and it will break your heart.

The injury of this time in your life will change you forever. You’ll doubt your abilities and you’ll flounder in self-hate, but you’ll recover. You will be ok. Know you are not alone in experiencing something like this as a young person, and remember you’re still valuable.

3. Hey girl, strangers should always be a little strange

If you meet someone and they instantly call you his or her best friend: that is a crazy person walk away. If you don’t, you’ll be at a dinner party where Crazy tells you they paid to have research done on you on the internet, and you’ll have to Irish goodbye the hell out of there.

82381-AW-HELL-NO-meme-Wonder-Woman-zaGp

4. Hey girl, be careful about the water in the Dominican Republic

This should go without saying ya idiot, but don’t brush your teeth with water from the sink. Things will happen to your digestive system, horrible things. It’ll eventually get so bad you’ll yell “Avenge me!” to your friends on the other side of the bathroom door. Bottled.Water.ONLY.

5. Hey girl, stop comparing yourself to others around you

You’re not on their path and their not on yours. Especially stop comparing your life to the “lives” you’re seeing on social media. That shit isn’t real. What’s real is you Comet scrubbing your bathtub while you listen to embarrassing music choices on your secret Cranberries Pandora station you hope no one knows about. That’s real and no one posts stuff like it, because everyone is curating a life online.

6. Hey girl, put aside money just for Bridesmaid dresses/duties/bachelorette penis straws

At this time in your life you’ll be a part of several weddings. It will be fun, and it will be costly. On average a bridesmaid today spends approximately $1,500-1,800 dollars per wedding*. That’s a lot of bones. In 2013, you will be in 7 different nuptials.

Learn to be more firm and say no sometimes. Yes, you will love the weddings and it’s the bride’s day, but she won’t have to live in a box because she’s broke after the wedding you will. Also no, you will never wear the dresses again.

7. Hey girl, write often, write more

Persue this because of the simple fact that it’s your favorite thing to do. See where it goes. Write even if it’s hypothetical advice to yourself.

8. Hey girl, don’t worry about being single

Dating in your 20’s is a tumultuous, boiling pit of trying to force things to work. Trust your gut, and don’t let being single or what label you think people affix to you because of that status means. If someone truly judges you because of it, they’re a dick. When you’re on a date and someone gives you a “No” feeling, you’re right. Do you own thing, and in time the right fella that it just works with will come along and you can’t control when that will happen. Stay open and positive. Be selfish about yourself because you can.

do-no-harm

9. Hey girl, try out meditation sooner

This is a tool you’ll scoff at, but it’ll help you to observe your thoughts and emotions and not be hijacked by them. Sitting on the sidelines of what’s going on in your head will put you at peace, and it’s not something you should put off. Maybe grab a kombucha after you’re done, ya hippy.

10. Hey girl, you’re ok

You’re doing fine, and you’re making mistakes. Your 20’s are a huge juxtaposition of major successes and failures. It’s a time of fun, pain, peace and chaos. Use it as a time to figure out what you’re about, and stop beating yourself up. Eat all the French fries your metabolism is so fast right now, and try to stop worrying so much you’re doing life right.

** Facts from USNews.com

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Pure Barre July Challenge: I did it. Mic drop.

August 8, 2015 Leave a comment

I did it. I finished all 20 thigh, seat and ab breaking classes. It wasn’t easy and the soreness was real. Throughout the month of July I actively avoided stairs so as not to inflict more pain. There were mornings when I’d wake up and my body was so tired that to get out of bed I’d lift myself out like this:

*This is all done in slow motion*

Lift neck

Push elbows back to lift upper body

Ok, gotta put my legs on the floor so just gonna

Pivot

Piiiiivot

Feet on the floor, alright!

As the month went on I noticed that while the classes were still intensely challenging, it didn’t take me nearly as long to recover afterwards as it had in the past. There were also classes I’d walk into having been my 4th or 5th in a row that turned out to be my best performances. It was shocking, but the saying is true, you’re stronger than you think. (Even when sometimes all you think about in class is tacos)

Flipping into a temporary moment of seriousness:

The reason I started going to Pure Barre was because I had injured my neck and I needed a challenging exercise that I could do that was low-impact. In fact, in the month of June I was going to physical therapy to get over the injury and was finally making forward progress after being in pain for nearly a year. Now that I’m nearly at 100% I fully understand and can appreciate that being able to exercise and push yourself is a privilege.  Healing from this made me aware of just how good I have it, and to always be grateful for a healthy body.

Barre

Q’s I’ve been asked about the challenge:

Would you do another Barre Challenge month?

‘Yes absolutely!’. The awesome part about a challenge like this is it really shows you that with a little planning you can really pack your schedule to meet your fitness needs no matter what.

Have you lost weight/noticed any body changes?

Yes and no. I’ve lost a lot of inches, but not weight. I lost an inch and a half off of my waist and hips just during the July challenge alone. So I can see how effective the exercise is. For other body changes, I’m a lot stronger now. I can do push-ups and the splits. Who would have thought that in my 30’s I’d be doing the splits? I can’t really show them off as a party trick anymore as most of the parties I now go to are baby related. Maybe I can break it out during a wine and cheese thing? I dunno.

Are you going to still go to Barre?

Yes, I did a butt breaking class this morning thank you. I need a barre buddy you wanna come?

Any advice for someone starting out new with Barre?

Just keep going to class. You’ll get better and stronger faster than you think. Also, don’t eat spicy foods before class. Just trust me on that one.

Shortly after my last class, an email from my studio went out congratulating all of the challenge winners and naming all of us. They also let us know that the prize for completing this challenge is a free intensive workshop class.

Looks like I’m just going to buy a Barre shirt and say that I won that shit.

To celebrate, I’m ending this with The Cars.

65 Thoughts I Had While In Barre Class

July 17, 2015 3 comments

{To the tune of Livin’ on a Prayer}

Ohhhhh I’m halfway thereee, Ohhh-Ohh tryna not look like a pear

I’ve finished half the Pure Barre July Challenge.

photo (11)

Last night was my 10th class, it was an 80’s themed class, and I was doing well in the challenge until Tuesday’s little battle sesh. I was slowly murdered by my Pure Barre instructor whilst wearing a side-pony and Ninja Turtles t-shirt.

I’ve compiled a list of 65 thoughts I had

  1. Class number 10: I’m going to crush this
  2. How does this place smell good even if it’s a gym?
  3. All this 80’s workout clothes doesn’t look too different than our normal gear wtf
  4. I like leg warmers I don’t care what anybody thinks
  5. Oh good my spot on the floor isn’t taken.
  6. I see a bunch of girls that I feel like I kind of know, but haven’t talked to in class
  7. We’re like battle buddies in here
  8. Oh shit, I stared at her too long. I’m so awkward
  9. Look.At.Cuticles
  10. Ok instructor is putting on her mic
  11. It’s go time
  12. Knee lifts alright not so bad
  13. Omigod I’m way more tired than I thought my muscles literally feel like bags of SAND
  14. 90 second plank time- just push through this shitty shitty temporary pain
  15. Got a compliment from the instructor. Banking it now.
  16. Hurtssss so much
  17. Already sweating. Looks like I’m just going to be gross right out of the gate
  18. Why do I feel so taxed already??
  19. Moving on to arms
  20. Hey I can see tiny biceps in the mirror
  21. I should just always hold my arms like this
  22. Shoulders are burning. Not a slow burn either, these mofos on are fireeeee
  23. These 2 pound weights feel like a 1000. They are tiny and all cute. Little shits
  24. Oh thank God, streeeeeetch
  25. To the barre ya’ll
  26. Thighs all day
  27. Look at me doing this thigh work like a BOSS
  28. Spoke to soon this is LITERALLY the most painful thing I’ve ever done
  29. Don’t break don’t break don’t break
  30. I broke form
  31. I’m back in, no one saw be cool be cool be cool
  32. Please say this is the final 10 reps PLEAAAASSSE
  33. THIS IS THE LONGEST 10 SECONDS EVER
  34. Moving on! What’s that? More thighs bish
  35. Is everyone else going through the inner turmoil that I am?
  36. Goddamn I want a taco
  37. And streeeeetch yasssss
  38. Omigod I’m doing the splits, haven’t been able to do this since I was 12
  39. I’m sweating so much I think all my fluid from inside is now outside
  40. Ok, girl next to me merely glowing. Not the Swamp Thing like me
  41. Seat work now
  42. I guess that’s what real ladies call butts
  43. I’m awesome at this, lifting and lifting
  44. Instructor corrected my form and this is now actually hard as hell
  45. Ass-is-going-to-pop-off
  46. Is everyone else looking at their butts in the mirror?
  47. Just me. Typical.
  48. Oh yes, this is the one where we lay on the floor
  49. “Go somewhere else in your mind” Instructor says—My mind is focused on the pain in my ass
  50. Excuse me “Pain in my seat”
  51. Hates it
  52. Streeeetch sweet mother of
  53. Grabbing a mat for some ab work yeaah
  54. Ok I’m calling this move the wind breaker, because your girl needs to fart
  55. This class is in very close quarters. Don’t fart don’t fart don’t fart
  56. My abs are shaking— from effort hopefully
  57. Say FINAL TEN PLEASE GOD
  58. Yassss queeeen cobra stretch
  59. I forgot the final sprint- I always forget it DAMMIT
  60. Just gotta get through this last floor bridge
  61. They are playing a remix of Berlin’s Take My Breath Away and the irony is not lost on me
  62. It looks like we’re all humping the air
  63. Seriously how is the instructor not laughing
  64. FINAL FUCKING STRETCHES
  65. Omigod I love this shit

Halfway there guys, let’s see if I can push it through to the end. Also, I stand by my love of leg warmers.

Pure Barre July Challenge: Classes 1-4

July 5, 2015 Leave a comment

SHP-PureBarre-2

So I’ve never done back to back days at Pure Barre before, and before starting this challenge I was really nervous about pushing myself without many breaks. Even after  6 months of classes under my belt, the classes can still be brutal, I’m still super sore the next day. In fact, the few days before signing up to do the challenge I indulged myself with a few days of total sloth just to get ready for it. Pizza.The Wire. Couch. Yes, please.

My first class I sauntered in all-sass, knowing the drill, and thought that I’d relatively breeze through what was about to happen to me. I was wrong, and was humbled by a thigh and seat breaking class that left me doubting I could finish the rest of the challenge. Sweat-soaked and defeated I slunk back to my car where I turned on the AC and thought about getting a consolatory Pinkberry.

The very next day was my first consecutive class, and I tip toed in feeling incredibly nervous that I would even be able to finish the class. I wondered, “Has anyone ever had to leave class to barf from exhaustion??” To stop myself from wondering if I’d be the first girl to befoul the Pure Potty (yes that’s what it is actually called, hilarious) I wanted to talk to an expert.  I struck up a conversation with the girl next to me who I knew was a long-time barre veteran who said “You definitely can do this, I find the classes are easier if you come more often.” Her encouragement made me feel awesome, but I didn’t know if my body would react in the way that hers did to this kind of punishment. I finished the class, and felt way better about my chances of completing this thing. The Barre veteran was right, somehow it is easier if you just keep going.

The morning of day 3 I woke up with what appeared to be hockey pucks in my legs instead of my calf muscles. When I walked I expected to hear the “ching….ching…ching…” of Old West style spurs on my heels as I hobbled into my bathroom. It’s not particularly painful, just weird.

Mexican-antique-spurs

What’s that noise? That’s some girls’ jacked up calves. Don’t worry John Wayne.

I’ve now pushed through classes 3 and 4, and there is a teeny, tiny glimmer of pride building up with each finished class.

Just warning you guys, there will be no living with me if I successfully complete this challenge.

Categories: Uncategorized

Pure Barre Challenge: This May Kill Me

June 27, 2015 Leave a comment

Guess who’s back? Back again. My blog’s back. Tell a friend.

This January I decided to do what everyone does, and GET IN SHAPE dammit! I’ve been a casual runner for years, but it was never anything that was super serious. Mostly I did it for the post-race free t-shirts baby! (And also I did it to be able to describe myself smugly as ‘a runner.’) I loved it, but I’ve had to take a temporary sabbatical from running because I’ve sustained a weird injury.

I’ve been healing from a periscapular strain on the fifth vertebrae of my neck. Which I got from throwing up. Seriously.  I wish it was a cooler story, but it was from a stomach virus. This bug was so intense I was sure that I’d be discovered dead on my bathroom floor. Some years-worn detective would probably have to let my parents and boyfriend know “In all my years I’ve never seen something so embarrassing” and then he’d flick out a half-smoked cigarette. (I’m just guessing at the details.)

During the course of this sickness I heaved so hard that I damaged my neck. I’m assured by my orthopedic doctor that this is more common than I think. I’m skeptical.  I’m pretty sure he’s lumping me in with his geriatric patients. He advised that I needed to find a low exercise intense workout that wouldn’t bother my neck, and this is where Pure Barre comes in.

SHP-PureBarre-2
My first class was January 9, 2015 and thus began my love affair. Pure Barre describes itself as “Utlizing the ballet barre to perform small isometric movements, it is a total body workout that targets your seat, tones your thighs and burns fat in record-breaking time.”  I would describe it as “Torture that you come to crave and is low impact on your joints. Perfect for you if you’ve somehow hurt yourself by barfing”

I’ve been at it for 6 months now, and I.CANNOT.STOP. Each class is insanely hard. During each class there is a time when I say to myself “I hate this” but somehow at the end of each class I have a moment where I AM BEYONCE.

This summer there is a challenge that my Pure Barre studio has put out that simply “Complete 20 classes in the month of July” I’m going to attempt this challenge. I will say I’m a bit concerned considering how sore I am after each class. I’m going to document my progress here, and keep you all along for the ride.  And guys, there is a free t-shirt at the end of this I can feel it.

They look so angry... please don't hurt me.

They look so angry… please don’t hurt me.

Found: A Note From My 6 Year Old Self

May 7, 2014 1 comment

So I found an old diary of mine the other day, and besides the rambling musings of little girl I also found this gem:
Alison
________________________________________________________________________
It reads:

This is a free contry
This is a free HOUSE
You are acting like you are the QUEEN!!!
But you are just a Big old BULLY!

Alison

P.S. I might run away
_________________________________________________________________________

I think this is a note I had written to my mom, being so incensed about something but had never actually worked up the cojones to give it to her as it still resided in my diary all these years.

I have thoughts on this first being:
burn

I don’t know what my mom had done, but I don’t think it would have ever warranted this much sass. No one got away with that much ‘tude in our house and lived to tell the tale.

Secondly, I like how I left in some wiggle room with the use of the word “might” in the post script. I knew even then, that me and my Strawberry Shortcake suitcase couldn’t get too far from the house without getting scared. I mean, the house was where the Teddy Grahams were, so I wanted to put in that caveat without losing any power from the threat of running away.

Glad I never gave it to her, what a little brat. Happy Mother’s Day ya’ll.

Arstidir: Punk Rock Angels of Death?

May 7, 2014 1 comment

I’ve recently happened upon this video of an Icelandic Group singing an 800 year old hymn. Apparently, they had just finished a concert and the video was taken late night in a German Train Station with them singing impromptu.

It’s possibly the most beautiful thing I’ve ever heard:

I couldn’t help but wonder though, if I had just gotten off of that train, I’m sure I would just assumed that I died.

Literally the thought would be “Oh wow that’s a beautiful, ethereal sound. Wait, WAIT am I dead? Like did I die on a train? Oh man I died in a train station and the angels greeting me are dressed like punk rockers WIERD.”

 

Also, did you see the guy still holding the beer while he sang?  The late-night style is strong here.

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