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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.

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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 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.

The Time I Accidentally Sexually Harassed a Personal Trainer

I’ve been on a workout kick lately. I usually have a pattern of realizing that summer around the corner in late spring and then go into beast mode. Beast mode being, I get on a treadmill and bro out in the mirror at my gym with the 10 pound pink weights. You know hard-core.

I go to a small gym that is across the street from my office, and it has regulars. If you go there enough you’ll recognize literally everyone who walks in. There aren’t strangers and everyone gives one another an obligatory chin nod when you walk in. The gym also has trainers who run their sessions there. My story has to do with one of them:

One seemingly innocuous evening a trainer, whose name I don’t know because we’re only at the chin-nod stage of our acquaintance, was finishing up a session. I was also finishing up making a fool of myself with a medicine ball on a mat. I was trying to do an ab workout, but I feel like what I was doing looked like a poor attempt at a rhythmic gymnastics routine. (There were far too many unintentional leg kicks and wriggling to look like I was doing anything athletic.)

Russia's Daria Dmitrieva competes using the ball in her individual all-around gymnastics qualification match at the Wembley Arena during the London 2012 Olympic Games

Yeah I totally looked like this.

As a note of description: the trainer in question is super nice, and looks like a young, non-mullet having John Stamos. I know that he isn’t everyone’s dream boat, but those people may not have been 90’s kids who religiously watched Full House. I mean HAVE MERCY!

So Stamos-doppleganger finished with his session and standing in front of some stacked cubbies everyone uses to store their stuff in while working out when I walked over. My cubby was underneath the one he was using and he had his back facing me while I awkwardly stood there waiting. He hadn’t noticed me, and I wasn’t sure how to let him know I needed to get to my stuff.  I opened my mouth and this bomb fell out:

“Hi excuse me, I just need to get to my cubby-”

*He moves out of the way*

“Oh yeah thanks I didn’t want to do a reach-around and…”

At that moment all time and space held its collective breath while all the blood in my brain raced to my feet. I think it did that out of self-preservation because the pain of processing the embarrassment coming my way was enough to take me to point break. I grabbed my stuff and walked to my car while looking at my phone like it had the answer to time travel in it to avoid eye contact.

i-dont-want-to-live-on-this-planet-anymore-11372-400x250

I was so embarrassed that I had to sit in my car and just stare while I thought about what I had just done to myself. Also during the drive home and for much of the night, right when I started to relax I thought of what would happen when I went to the gym again and saw Stamos trainer guy as I knew I would. Right when I was worrying about that the whole recent scene would pop up again and I’d hear myself say it “reach-around.” Like an ever-present ouroburos that was just hovering in the background of my thoughts, the cycle of hearing the moment would start head to tail any time I’d relax.

 

Yes, I have been back to the gym since the unintentional service offer. And yes it did take a pump up speech from me, to me, to get me back in there. Turns out it’s fine, and I’ve been doing my regular late-spring gym ratting in peace ever since. To Stamos the trainer guy’s credit, I didn’t hear a laugh from him or even feel a stare. I prayed that he didn’t hear me, but I know that was unlikely.

Thanks Uncle Jesse look-alike. You’re a pal.

t_1ad1a4cbb4ef49f7b30276d7920b8f55

So it’s been a while

April 24, 2014 Leave a comment

Hi ya’ll. I have been painfully neglecting my duties as an amateur/expert/goddess of blogging.

I have a lot of stories that I’m polishing now. Will post soon.

Topics include but are not limited to:

  • A baby shower that had a taxidermy theme and barrel of fire outside
  • Accidentally sexually harassing a trainer at my gym
  • Attempting to bake cinnamon bread and ending up with Gak. (Do you guys remember Gak from the 90’s?? That stuff was the shit!)

Love and kisses,
A

Car Flirting will F**king Kill You

August 6, 2012 2 comments

Disclaimer: If you are already a terrible driver or are newly licensed, the following tips are NOT intended for your use on the roadways. You would probably clip or kill someone like me and that would suck.

So I live in Atlanta (as the title of this blog asserts.)  Atlanta is known for its terrible traffic. Every year this city lands itself in the top ten for being the worst in congestion, and by and far I’d say that’s accurate. Although when I bring that up to anyone who lives in ANY other city, they will always argue how their city is the actually worst.  As if it’s some sort of traffic-penis measuring contest. Here’s a truth bomb: I don’t care about how you got stuck on the I 85 for 2 hours, I’m pissed you interrupted my story about how I thought I saw Jason Bateman sitting in traffic next to me . I suppose what this pissing contest indicates is that we live in a world where traffic and long commutes are more common than not.  They can be stressful and something must be done to alleviate this terrible dilemma we now find ourselves in.

This would have been an awesome story

Never fear, I have created a list of 5 techniques you can use in your own car to ease your traffic woes:

  1. The Somber Music Video

This particular technique works the best if it is raining, but it doesn’t have to be. The idea is to put on a serious or sad song and pretend like you’re in a music video whilst looking out your window. Hand gestures are particularly important, I like to take the back of my hand and slowly slide it down my driver’s side window for effect. If you can do this while sitting at a stoplight and staring directly at the person stopped next to you, extra points.

Suggested Songs:

Kiss From a Rose, Seal

Everybody Hurts, R.E.M.

Standing Outside a Broken Phone Booth, Primitive Radio Gods

*Any song by the Weepies*

Do not smile. It will kill this moment

2. The Celebrity Interview

In my city there are a number of morning radio shows to choose from. (I don’t suggest listening to one unless you are forced to by someone sitting in your car with a white hot cow brander pointed at your temple) I’ll say with the utmost certainty that the people who host these shows are the most obnoxious type of person you can encounter. There is one particular morning show here that is massively popular, and the people that host it are terrible garbage people who pander to their audience by spouting off opinions (most likely not theirs at all) that are meant to drum up shouting phone calls.  I want to kick them in their faces. However, they do get some good celebs on the show.

For this tip, all you have to do is answer the questions the morning DJ’s ask the celeb they have in studio. The more boring the celeb the better. Here’s an example of how this becomes fun:

Awful Morning DJ to Simon Cowell: So Simon, what are you up in your free time when X factor isn’t filming?

Your doctored Simon Cowell answer:  Well I’m trying to stage a comeback for roller blading, so I held an event in London last week called the Roller Balls. No one showed up except for Paula Abdul, so we decided to do whip-it’s in a dumpster nearby.

See, isn’t he much more interesting now? Suddenly, you have a new source of gossip!

Suggested boring celebs to answer for:

Gwenyth Paltrow

Tobey Maguire

January Jones

Spice it up people.

3.The Song Writer

With music becoming more homogenized these days, listening to new songs can become confusing. Are you listening to the same songs over and over again? Kind of.  The differences between modern day manufactured artists are minimal, so I say mix it up and put in your own flare with new song lyrics!

Example

My Version of Carly Rae Jensen’s, Call Me Maybe chorus:

Hey I just met you

And this is crazy

But the number you gave me at the bar didn’t work

So I followed you home

And climbed in your window

Wow. Who knew Carly was so fucked up?  I did. I knew she was.

Monster!

4. The Car Dancer

Here is where my disclaimer at the top really comes into play, because this tip requires the most movement.  This one is a dance. First you must select awesome tunes to shake your thang to.

The dance starts in your shoulders, to the beat: Up down Up down

Then get a chin nod going. (Beware of duckface so keep those lips in control)

Now is where it gets sexual. Throw an occasional belly roll in the mix. If you can’t do a belly roll just hump your seat, it basically looks the same.

There, now you’re having fun AND you’re burning calories! One thing though, do not dance with your right leg. You need it to push the accelerated and more importantly the brakes. Never forget this!

Suggested Dance music:

Good Vibrations, Marky Mark and the Funky Bunch

Loud Pipes, Ratatat

1940, The Submarines

*Anything song off of the original Jock Jams CD*

5. The Pale Thigh Driver

This final tip is only for use when you have an exceptionally terrible commute or road trip ahead of you.

Drive. Without. Pants.

That’s right, take off those britches/jeans/jeggings (weirdo) and get comfortable, it is going to be a long ride. The no-pants technique works because of all the extra sensation you get that you normally do not feel when you’re constricted to the social norm of lower body garments. It works best if you have a leather interior. Puttin’ skin on skin baby!

So there you have it, those are my tips for staying sane on the road. I’m not saying these tricks are the definitive way to keep yourself amused, but they certainly work for me.

I will leave you with one final nugget of car wisdom that I feel very passionate about. Do not car flirt.  By this I mean making eyes, blowing kisses, or air humping to other vehicles around you. I never condone this and don’t do it because of this:

I have a friend Polly* who is a serial car-flirter. I was riding in her car one day, and we were stopped next to a fellow in a rust bucket that looked like it was a Buick and Cadillac welded together. She turned to me and said, “Watch this” and proceeded to blow kisses and yell things like “Heeeey.” (She somehow made ‘Hey’ three syllables.)  This elicited an excited bunch of whistles and engine revving from the rust bucket driver who looked like Sling blade. I freaked the fuck out! Sure, in Polly’s mind this was all in fun, but that dude was probably a serial-killer-rapist-baby puncher. I knew he was going to kill us. He was going to follow us home and make a quilt with our hides. The car flirting continued on for what seemed like 30 minutes, I don’t really know I think I blacked out, and yes he did follow her car for 17 agonizing miles.

French Fried Pertaters

And then he killed Polly.

Ok no he didn’t, but don’t do that people. You’ll get yourself killed!

Also car flirting puts out a whore-y vibe from your car and no amount of sage burning gets rid of that.

Happy driving folks!

**Name changed to protect the insane

If you think of other somber songs, dancing songs, or celebs you want included tweet me @OdetoFunny

Tell Tail Signs of the Apocalpyse

July 23, 2012 1 comment

So there is a lot of hub-bub over this year being 2012, and the predictions of the End of the World. Most notably, the Ancient Mayan calendar explicitly dictates that the end of the world will come on December 21, 2012. The calendar moves in a mathematically linear format that coincide with the movement of the stars; ticking the ages by until it reaches this year.

Apocalypse fanatics now have a calendar to clench onto to tout their crazy, and this year is ripe for more weirdos to come out of the woodwork.  Remember that dude Harry Camping, the self- taught internet and radio preacher, who predicted that the world would end on May 21, 2011? Yes, there will be more of those.  Which really is just comedy writing itself.

Image

Sorry about that Har-bear, but at least you got to experience seeing The Avengers. Right?

I will say I am a complete skeptic on this whole issue.  I don’t think that the annihilation of the entire human race will come in one Michael Bay-esqe explosion.  I thoroughly am enjoying scoffing at people holding signs on the side walk screaming “Repent.”

 

 

Image

Look at this dillhole, probably ruining peoples’ days on their quiet way to Starbucks.

 I do, however, realize everything has a beginning and  an end, I just think it will be more organic and gradual than the fantastical musings of crazy people on the internet.

I am sure.

Or I was until I saw this.  I stumbled across this company and its goods recently, and its been haunting me ever since.

Image

What.The.Fuck.

The company Kigu creates tails for people to wear casually under “Smart sports jackets” out in everyday waking life. (You can check out the rest of their stuff at  www.kigu.co.uk but I will judge you for it) Now when I first encountered this I was mortified that it may be an American company, but no this organization is English, so this one is on you, United Kingdom.  Wearing tails is not a new thing. Children (at Halloween) and the Japanese rock them daily  (no disrespect but I do not understand their culture) . Surely,  however it must be a sign of the end of ages when this kind of couture is commonplace??!?

Here is the description for the “Fox Tail.”

The Fox Tail by TellTails is luxuriously bushy and soft to the touch. Ideal for distinguished gents and ladies alike, it really does look smashing under a smart jacket. Having said that, stick it on with a pair of jeans and a T-shirt and you’ll look pretty dapper too! It attaches to the body with a comfortable, elasticated waistband.

 It’s the end of the God damned world people.

Image

Admittedly this one is kind of fun, and I hate myself for writing that.

So I leave you all to absorb this realization.  I’ve got to work on a bucket list, and see if I can somehow manage to seduce my childhood crush Devon Sawa between now and December 21st.  Lunch sounds good too, I have got to stand up from my desk and office chair, my dinosaur tail is chaffing like crazy.

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