Tag Archives: change

Embrace who you are, rather than rail against it.

For as much as I have been working hard at learning to let go, to ‘roll’ with life a little more, and to be content with the here and now and not always go-go-go, do-do-do, goal-goal-goal…I realized something.

I need to embrace who I am, rather than rail against it.

Some of you have noted this to me in your comments, emails, and conversations ‘in real life,’ that there isn’t necessarily anything ‘wrong’ with these particularly type A traits I have, and while I *do* agree (I mean, hey, I do embrace my type A-ness pretty darn well, hehe), I can also see how these tendencies are stealing the joy out of every plan I make, every thing I do, every conversation I have, in some cases.

And that part needs to change. The joy-stealing part. The overplanning to a T of every cookout, gathering, errands, whatever it may be. I end up planning the shit out of it and at the same time, stealing the joy straight out from under it too (yes, errands make me happy…what of it lol).

But what does not need to change? Me. Overall.

My organization. My drive. My motivation. (Some) of my particular habits.

Because these things? They are who I am. And together with M? We mesh so well (usually. except when I deserve the ‘princess glass’ for being too uptight on any given evening!) – he balances me, I balance him. If we were both all type A crazy, we would likely back ourselves into a corner with overplanned-ness. If we were both type roll-with-it, we’d I don’t know…maybe I don’t want to know what that scenario would look like 😉

The point is – I am working on the areas that I *want* to change and tweak. But at the core of it, this is still always be who I am. And I need to stop apologizing for that (to myself, mostly) and just find ways to ease up on the habits and uptightness that makes me less than a joy to be around.

A little more roll, a little less…change?

This is me, embracing who I am, not railing against it.

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Throwbacks on comparison and number fixation.

After a most perfect weekend of unplanned-ness, good, quality time with M, and the downtime I’ve been craving (like whoa), I sit here somewhat amazed at a few things I realized about my habits and how they’ve changed.

In particular? Comparison and number fixation. 

These are two things that have dogged me big time in the past year, where I allowed comparing myself to others, including my sister Jess and to well, just about anyone, and my fixation on numbers (namely – the scale) to drag me down and lose sight of my achievements and progress.

There were two instances where I had an amazing a-ha moment that made me realize that I’ve come a lot farther than I really even realized. So, I call this a ‘throwback’ of sorts because I recall it being just about this time last year where I was neck-deep in a downward spiral of self negativity with relation to comparison and number fixation.

The first instance? Running.

At this point last year, I was struggling to embrace running, to love it as much as I proclaimed. To want to run another half marathon. And while I did run another half marathon last year, it was also that experience that made me realize that I am NOT a racer. But deep down? I was comparing myself to my sister. And her amazing PR. And wondering ‘why not me?’ WHY can’t I do it? Why is she better than me?

Fast forward to this weekend. My sister and brother in law ran a kick-ass half marathon…another PR. And I don’t think I could have been prouder if I tried. I was beaming when she texted me her finish. I was excited and proud to see all of the congratulatory tweets and Facebook posts. I reveled in it. And I didn’t feel an ounce of jealousy, frustration or ‘why not me?’ moments. In fact, I channeled her ‘run happy’ mantra on my own run that morning with M, as we spontaneously decided to find a new route. And ya know what? I ran happy.

Compare THAT to last year? I can’t even describe how happy that makes me. I’m not comparing anymore. I’ve released myself of it. And instead? I’m proud of her, and happily running my own way.

~~

The second instance? I decided to weigh myself this weekend, after not weighing myself since December. I honestly had no idea what the scale would say. Of course, I hoped it would be lower than when I weighed in December, but told myself to only do it if I knew I could handle what it said.

So, as I waited to teach my barre n9ne class on Sunday, I stepped on the scale. And looked down. At first, I was happy. It was below my goal weight of that December timeframe. But then my mind automatically started to want to compare. At first, I did. And then I brushed it off. And then I did it again. I started to fixate. But it was half-hearted. I didn’t WANT to compare, or fixate, or obsess. I taught my class, I channeled my frustration (and probably killed my clients, hehe, but hey, what’s a little extra sweat on a Sunday Funday?!). I looked in the mirror. In my brand-new Lululemon outfit that I couldn’t believe I was wearing. Crops I never thought I could rock. And I smiled. I felt good. The number started not to matter so much, or rather, I started to own that number, to be proud of it, and not lose sight of all that I’ve accomplished in the ‘year of barre n9ne’.

On my drive home, I thought about it some more. And I realized something that really drove it home for me. A proportional loss that made me realize that I had, indeed, worked so hard, accomplishing a number that I wanted to own, rather than ‘wish away’ into a lower, phantom number, I embraced it. 100%. 

And that, my friends, are two examples of harnessing two very almost-paralyzing habits – comparison and number fixation – and instead, embracing and celebrating the change, the progress, and the determination that I’ve worked so hard for. There’s no such thing as comparison…to anyone but yourself. 

This one needs zero explanation. Zero.

Spreading the barre n9ne passion!

If the epic surprise party wasn’t enough, this weekend also included the grand opening of the new barre n9ne studio, (which just so happens to be a mere 3 miles from where I live), an event we’d all been gearing up for excitedly for weeks. My sister Jess and I have been working hard behind the scenes, gathering some fantastic sponsors, including Zico, Coach’s Oats, popchips, Vita Coco, Chobani and Love Grown Foods’ Granola (see Jess’s post here with more details too!) and the day came off without a hitch.

But beyond that, I was so thrilled to be part of a team that cares so deeply about this studio, about its success and expansion, and the passion we all have for barre-style workouts, and not just *any* barre-style workout, but barre n9ne method, specifically. As Tanya introduced all of us, and our backgrounds, I just tried to capture the memory and sear it into my brain, because a year ago?

None of this even seemed fathomable.

It wasn’t even a thought in my mind. A year ago, I was unhappy in myself, my body, my self-image and distastrous ability to tear myself apart at the drop of a hat. But today? I don’t think I could be much happier than I am and I truly credit this journey with so much of that change and happiness. I’ve grown in so many ways, I’ve met incredible and inspiring people and seen equally incredible progress and ability in the clients of barre n9ne. And this next phase? Not only experiencing its growth but being instrumental in making it a success? Truly a blessing. 

Walking around and talking to prospective clients and new and longtime clients was an absolute joy. It was an adrenaline rush to hear the excitement in people’s voices, hearing our stories of the inagural 60-day challenge we won and have since helped carry forth into an epic success for so many others, hearing their compliments, saying things like “you can tell this stuff really works, the instructors really fit the image of lean and tone and fit!” You can’t pay someone to say that, ya know? It’s passion and truth. 

Beyond the demo classes (that were so fun to do together!), and the food, and the fun and fruity drinks, seeing the studio alive, and seeing how far this studio – and we – have come, was an incredible experience.  I cannot thank Tanya enough for taking a chance on us last April. Because ever since that day? I’ve not gone halfway and stopped. I’ve not ‘just’ gone for the field goal. There is no such thing as anything less than a touchdown. Go all the way.

~~

And now, some pictures. Enjoy! (and thank you to all of our sponsors!!)

The barre n9ne family of fabulous instructors (and our 'barre-tender' and bestie Steph!)
Jess and I in our super fabulous barre n9ne attire (oh, how I adore pink!)
Demo class #1 (for real, that upper body segment always kills me! Check out that game face!)
barre n9ne bag, anyone? 😉
demo class #2 (I think?)
The goods! Everyone LOVED all of the treats we had for them to take with them (and I loved it all too!)

PS: I taught my first 6 am class this morning and while it was a very small class, one of the very first women I talked to, a past client who had moved and was now much closer to this studio, came in for her first class in maybe a year. It was just incredible to see how happy she was to be back at it. What a way to start a Monday!!

A busy life is a good life?

Seriously, when did my life get so BUSY all of a sudden? 

I woke up today to some super exciting news: my schedule for the ‘soft launch’ opening week at barre n9ne’s SECOND location (which just so happens to be miraculously located 5 mins from where I live!) next week!!! And as I opened it up and saw that I am teaching three times next week (Woohoo!!), my mind started going into overdrive (a serious case of OATT, as my sister so geniously coined in her hilarious post the other day…seriously, we share the same brain, that is totally ME too!).

Here’s a little snippet of how my case of OATT went down:

OMG so exciting! Teaching three times next week *even though* I am traveling Tuesday-Thursday! That’s awesome.

(pause)

OMG, I am teaching three times next week *even though* I am traveling Tuesday-Thursday! When will I fit in *my own* workouts here AND while traveling?! 

I then proceeded to think through the days I teach (and calling those quasi-workouts since technically, since I am teaching, I am far less DOING and doing far more demonstrating, fixing form etc), and where I can fit in my runs and what I can feasibly fit in while I am in Chicago (luckily, I already have plans with this girl to hit up Flywheel for a spinning class! Woohoo!).

And then the real case of OATT fell into place…what about *after* that? I am going to have to rejigger all of my workouts completely (as did Jess, and I knew this was coming, but change is scary for this girl, mmk? Bear with me!) around what I teach (since I am not sure yet what classes I’ll teach after the soft launch, perhaps more, perhaps different days). And the realization that a) I will have to accept that I will be TAKING less classes and TEACHING more…and that’s more than okay. That’s exciting! As will teaching and taking classes 5 mins away, rather than an hour roundtrip.

Case of OATT #1 ceases there. Because truly, a busy life right now, for me, is a good life. Because what is making it busy is GOOD. It’s CHANGE. It’s CHALLENGE. It’s what I have been working so hard for.

Then crept in case of OATT #2. 

All the other stuff crammed in over the next few months. Here’s a little glimpse:

This weekend: teaching on Saturday (woohoo!), blogger brunch with a few lovelies (like Samantha, my sis and many others) on Sunday, followed by barre n9ne at 5:30 and dinner with aforementioned Samantha and sis. Kinda crammed, but digging it (not to mention M’s LAST class on Sunday where he puts the finishing touches on his paper!)

Next week: Aforementioned teaching at barre n9ne (woohoo again!), Tues evening-Thurs evening – Chicago! (and M presents his dissertation on Wednesday to his panel…I’ll be there in spirit and have a few surprises up my sleeve for him, pun intended!). Friday becomes my day of insanity…teaching, work, cleaning and prep for the surprise party on Saturday and covert operation to grocery shop and store food at my sister’s house so M doesn’t see it. Saturday: barre n9ne Andover grand opening 11-2! Then covert operation to finish all the food and goodies for the surprise party! Then…surprise party commences (if I don’t keel over by that point!!).

(next week ought to be uh…quite the week huh?!)

Weeks upcoming:

April 28: A few parties and such…this oughtta be a goodie 😉

May 6: Jess and Scott and Samantha’s half marathon in RI. Spectate.

May 8-10: Travel to Atlanta for the Digital Summit AND meet Lee and hopefully Tina!!!

May 12: M graduates!!! And we celebrate. M has requested an evening in Boston, hotel included. I can definitely oblige to that 😉

May 19: My sister JEN graduates!! And we celebrate 🙂 (and my brother in law Scott officially re-graduates for teaching…woohoo!)

May 21-24: Travel to Costa Mesa for work. Oy vei, third work trip in 6 weeks!

May 27: Memorial Day weekend and my sister’s always-epic party for my brother in law’s birthday.

How’s that for a snapshot in BUSY?! But…at the same time? A busy life, for me, right now, is a good life. There is a shitton going on, personally, professionally, and physically. The next 6 weeks are going to be a blur. I am going to need to harness my patience. I am going to need M’s support (as much as he needs mine in the next week or so!). And I am going to have to choose my battles and cut myself some slack when I need it. <–someone remind me to do this last part, mmk?!

So yeah..this is precisely what is swirling in my head…a world of busy, like whoa, but at the same time? I wouldn’t change it for the world. 

(again, someone remind me of that in a few weeks when I start to really feel it!).

**I hope you’ve enjoyed this little glimpse into my case(s) of OATT today…sometimes you just gotta lay it out blog-style to feel a little less chaotic and a little less unsettled. Game face ON.**

Letting go.

I have always struggled with this. Letting go. 

I think it’s been the root of my anxiety and overthinking ways (of the past!) and the inhibitor to growth and adjusting to change, in some capacity.

When I moved in with M in August, I started to let go a little bit. It took time, and it was frustrating, but I’ve let go of things like a spare dish in the sink, socks on the floor, whatever it may be, and have accepted that we are different people with different habits and allowing the house to not look as perfect as I’d like sometimes is perfectly okay. I used to get so anxious about it (moreso in my past apartment) in keeping it in tip top shape all the time and sticking to my once a week top to bottom cleaning, and while I do strive for a clean and tidy place now, I’ve realized that a few socks or papers laying on the table won’t kill me.

Learning to let go in this capacity has actually really helped me let go in other ways, too. Like with my routine and my workouts. I am better at adjusting my workouts to the conditions around me (as evidenced by last week’s workouts) and working out smarter, not harder, and the biggest one? Running. Letting go and not being so anxious or nervous prior to starting a run has done wonders for me.

For example, yesterday, M and I decided on a mid-day outdoor run. It was relatively mild (so I thought), and the route we chose would be solid, mostly downhill (so I thought). It ended up being a lot hillier on the way back than I remembered (funny how when you run the opposite way down a street, you never notice all those rolling hills…since they were subtly downhill the other way!), a lot windier, and colder (I didn’t wear my headband because I thought it was warm enough. Fail. Frozen ears). But instead of panicking or letting my breathing get out of control, we paced ourselves, slowed when we needed to and maintained a pretty steady pace. I don’t think I could or would have been able to do that before I started practicing this thing called ‘letting go.’

I have also learned that letting go means not comparing and not tearing myself down mentally, either. These will always be areas I need to work on, sometimes everyday, even, but instead of allowing fear to drive me or even competitiveness, to an extent, I am becoming more and more content with the me that I am, regardless of what others might think or assume about me, my relationship or my actions. That’s been huge for me.

The barre n9ne 60 day challenge has been, by far, one of the biggest tests for me in terms of letting go. It sounds like an oxymoron, in a sense, since this challenge has been all about focus, determination, dedication and being relatively strict with my eating and workout habits, but it has also meant throwing the rules out of the window and dedicating myself, mind, body and soul to this approach. It was really scary at first. It went against much of what I’d done in the past. But now? I can’t even fathom anything different. I can’t even fathom a better approach for me. One that works. From the eating habits and food log to the style of workout, to the combination with running that has been my special sauce. Letting go and not ‘going halfway and then stopping‘ has proved to me that dedication and hard work are, quite simply, all you need.

There are areas that I still have plenty of work to do in terms of letting go. A challenge coming up that I hope to be able to share with you soon (that is very, very exciting and I am bursting at the seams waiting to share it!) will be a true test of letting go. Of throwing some inhibitions out of the window and just going for it. I know I can do it, I just have to apply what I have learned and dedicate the time and focus to it.

This post literally came to me this morning as I was making my breakfast…and it’s actually given me a lot of food for thought in how I can apply this to all aspects of my life. Because letting go has been what has helped me change, grow and develop into who I am now. And I couldn’t be happier.